BattleTech - The Board Game of Armored Combat

BattleTech Game Systems => Strategic Combat => Topic started by: Dahmin_Toran on 11 April 2021, 02:53:15

Title: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: Dahmin_Toran on 11 April 2021, 02:53:15
Here are my thoughts on the Strategic Battleforce (SBF), in short, I like it. If you like Alpha Strike and big epic battles, I think you can get into it as well. In terms of battles, it was huge. The Kurita forces (my friend Alexander) brought two battalions of mechs plus a regiment of vehicles. The Steiner forces (me) brought a full regiment of mechs reinforced by two battalions of vehicles. We played on a double-sided map, so it was a brutal fight.
Here are some things I liked about SBF. I liked how you can build it up from Alpha Strike. I like how you can create any force you want and scale it up to SBF or even Abstract Combat System levels. I understand why the Skills, TMM, and Movement are averaged for each Formation. It is easy to roll attacks and apply them to the target. Although a little finicky, I like the Engagement Control rules too. It creates the feel of two units jockeying for control and can recreate the combat with up to four companies of troops in a single mapsheet with only three dice rolls.
I created the units from the sample units from Campaign Operations. I liked how each House’s units had their own flavor. The Combine units tended to be more mobile (more JUMP) while the Lyran units had slightly more firepower. The Combine player used that to his advantage to slip his units around my flanks. We were playing a Breakthrough scenario, and he won 23 VP over my 18 VP. I liked how you can use Engagement Control rolls for blocking and pinning maneuvers.
A lot of the rules are a bit wordy, and I had to read it a few times over to get the gist of them. But I think we were able to play in the spirit of the game. There was a lot to try to get a hold of like Engagement Rolls and Morale. I believe the Interstellar Operations books could do for a revision.
In the end I hope that SBF and even the Abstract Combat System could do for a little more love.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: FenderSaxbey on 11 April 2021, 03:09:27
Wholeheartedly agree. I've been on a bit of an SBF tear lately and appreciate your thoughts. It's a fun way to play out massive engagements with (almost) the ease of Alpha Strike. Out of curiosity, what did you use for unit counters? I've played around with some custom chits but getting them to print with any sort of readability has been a challenge. I've also taken to using the Alpha Strike custom card generator on the MUL to make cards instead of the regular long sheet which I find more helpful for tracking damage and status.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: Dahmin_Toran on 11 April 2021, 03:15:55
Oh wow that is awesome. I wish I was that talented.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: FenderSaxbey on 11 April 2021, 03:17:44
LOL, I fumbled for hours in the GIMP to get it to where it is. It still prints like poop at a usable size for the tabletop.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: Dahmin_Toran on 11 April 2021, 03:20:44
I just used minis and the long forms.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: FenderSaxbey on 11 April 2021, 04:03:49
I just used minis and the long forms.

Sweet, thanks!
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: Alexander Knight on 11 April 2021, 05:50:53
Dahmin, the Tukayyid Supplemental pdf has SBF values for Comstar and the Clans that you can easily plug in and use.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: Dahmin_Toran on 12 April 2021, 17:52:33
Dahmin, the Tukayyid Supplemental pdf has SBF values for Comstar and the Clans that you can easily plug in and use.

I just noticed those! Excellent. Now we just need 3050 SBF values.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: Vic_Vic on 19 June 2021, 05:48:27
I wish this system was better supported, although I liked seeing scenarios for this in Battle of Tukkayid. I love the scale, but as you say, some rules could be better worded. I feel that you need specific objectives in a scenario to enjoy the game better. Time constraints, exiting a border map, and the like, so you can fully use the zone of control movement rules. If the scenario is simply an "eliminate the enemy" it can devolve in a slugfest.
For counters, I created them with powerpoint and put some stats on them (Skill level, tactics, movement, TMM). I printed them as 3cmx3cm.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: nckestrel on 19 June 2021, 07:03:56
The existence of the SBF in the Tukayyid Supplemental was almost entirely due to Alexander Knight doing all the stat conversion work and writing the building force rules and his persistence in pushing for SBF to be included.
Title: Re: My thoughts on Strategic Battleforce
Post by: FenderSaxbey on 20 June 2021, 01:03:03
The existence of the SBF in the Tukayyid Supplemental was almost entirely due to Alexander Knight doing all the stat conversion work and writing the building force rules and his persistence in pushing for SBF to be included.

The hero we need. Many thanks to Alexander.