Monday 30 May 2016

Horizon Wars: Intel retrieval

While the NIJA had started their offensive on Churchill III with the partially successful raid on a USS outpost, the USS had not been idle.

Special forces units had been sent into imperial controlled cities and starports, in an attempt to unearth any intel on the troop dispositions and relative strenghts of the imperials on and around the Churchill system.

Most had reported back with little to no success, a few even had to shoot their way out. But now a report had come in from team mike, who had managed to get ahold of some classified reports. Having broken in to a government building turned local Imperial command post in the town of New Cairo, the Mike unit had uncovered intel that might help USS high command.

But they had been discovered.

The call for immediate reinforcement and retrieval of the intel went out as soon as the sitrep came in.
Unfortunately the Imperials maintain air superiority in the region, and any relief will have to come on the ground..

New Cairo

The USS relief-force, along with a light artillery unit not yet on the field, arrives on the outskirts of town.

The special forces unit Mike, trapped in the imperial command post.

The Imperial forces have set up a perimiter outside the building. A local commander arrives just as the would-be rescuers do.

A better picture of the USS units, captured by Imperial recon drones.

 The Imperial commander is not one to sit idle, he charges his mech into the open square and release a deadly hail of shells and rockets.

Bloodied, but still alive, the USS special forces make their way out the back of the building, trying to cut off the line of sight to the enemy.

They can hear the heavy footfalls of the mech making it's way towards them.

The attack helicopter lent to the commander for this operation swoops through the town, hunting the Mike unit.
Behind a skyscraper they finally catch up, and release a withering storm of fire.

The special forces unit is now almost completely unable to retailate due to the damage sustained to their equipment. but they only have to reach their frendlies..
 --But hot on the tail of the chopper is one of the light tanks!

It swings around the other corner, firing it's weapons almost point blank.

The superior training of the special forces is all that saves them. but how long can they endure this sort of punishment?

Realizing the need to block the advance of the enemy mech, the lone USS heavy cavalry charges into the intersection.

Placing round after round into the lumbering machine, the tank manages to deal some significant damage to both locomotion and weapons systems. But it's far from destroyed yet.
With time running out for team Mike, the USS CHQ makes a bold move, advancing into the thick of the enemy, firing at the light cavalry as he goes. As he gets close enough, the special forces unit starts uploading the stolen intel into his battle computer, distributing it into the tactical net of all in-range units.
The light USS mech moves up to support it's commander, adding stabbing beams of coherent light to the attacks. The Imperial light cavalry is starting to look worse for wear as more and more attacks strike home.  

In a bold move, a heavy infantry unit charges the USS tank. Preoccupied with dueling the mech, the crew doesn't see the enemy until the last moment, and that's a bit too late! The explosions of anti-tank charges ravage the cavalry element, taking it out of commission!

The start of the 2nd turn.

 In an attempt to protect the infantry long enough to finish the upload, the USS CHQ swings his mech around, and fires on the light cavalry infront of him. The heavy guns at such short range rupures the fusion plant, and the unit is gone in a brilliant implosion.

The second light tank manages to get around the commander despite his efforts. Somehow they manage to miss their target as the mike unit drops to the ground.

The special forces finally run out of luck, as the infantry in the building across picks their prone forms off. The intel transfer is interrupted as the equipment is shot to pieces, but a big part of it's already in the USS tac-net.
With the rescue a failiure and the intel only partially retrieved, the USS starts falling back. 
A red snout shoots out into view as the Imperial CHQ mech peeks out behind the building to take a shot at the retreating commander, but only manages to scratch paint.

Fire from the light artillery brings the last Imperial light tank down, as shells rips it into ever smaller pieces.

With only the severly depleted chopper left to pursue them, the USS forces looks to be in the clear..

..Untill a AT-rocket crosses the distance between the USS command mech and nearby building!
The Imperial heavy infantry took careful aim before letting their weapons fly, and the explosions rocking the mech is severe enough to force the pilot to eject from his mech!
The chopper does a last strafing run against the artillery before disengaging, but does no real damage.

Having fallen back far enough to outdistance any would-be pursuers, the USS fall back to safety.

Things are looking grim indeed for the USS, first a marginal but costly victory defending their outpost and now at least partially failed rescue attempt. The intel they did manage to download from team Mike might just be the sort of thing they need to turn the tables on the NIJA.

But the Imperial high command have plans of their own, and are not likely to sit idly by while their enemy plots..

A good game that turned out nothing like I imagined it would! Initially I was afraid that the SF unit would clear the table unharmed too easily, but as it turns out I maybe I should have let the USS start with the initiative the first round instead of rolling for it. You learn as long as you live I suppose!

I hope you've enjoyed it, I keep coming up with new scenarios at least once a week, so the next fight shouldn't be very far off!

Til next time. 

Saturday 21 May 2016

Finally! My first game of Horizon wars

Earlier this week the powers that be finally got the local post office to deliver my copy of Horizon Wars.
Needless to say, I've spent the week prepping for my first game and so here we are!

With border skirmishes and general saber-ratteling increasing between the USS and the NIJA, the former decided to increase their presence in the border systems.

The Churchill system, planet Churchill III.

This newly re-staffed USS outpost is about to be attacked. In an effort to probe enemy defences as well as to screen a larger offensive, the NIJA scout company was ordered to divert some assets for this mission.

The Imperial attackers, two P2 mechs, the left one being the CHQ, along with light and heavy cavalry and a unit of mobile infantry.  The hope of the imperial high command is to destroy the outposts fusion generator, in addition to learning enemy strenghts in the area.

The USS base defenders, a P3 marauder mecha, two units of light foot, a heavy cavalry element and a P2 CHQ mech.

As one of the imperial mechs comes in to view, the base alarms are tripped. Before long a firefight is raging between the heavy particle cannons of the USS marauder and the imperial mech, backed up by the heavy cavalry.

Both mechs receive light damage to their mobility, but are still very much in the fight.

Digging in at the guard tower, USS alpha squad manages to damage the imperial heavy cavalry's tracks.

Imperial mobile infantry is quick to retaliate, but their dug in opponents are unfazed by their attack.

 Adamant to keep the attackers out of the base, the USS commander moves up to block the entrance and lends his fire to that of the heavy mech. Concentrating their fire, the imperial commanders mech and the light cavalry unit inflict several telling wounds on the enemy commander. Armour comes off the armoured behemoth in big chunks, exposing critical systems. But he is still in the fight..
End of the first turn. Both sides have savaged eachothers mechs, but so far the USS is giving better than they get.

 Stealing a page from the attackers playbook, both USS mechs concentrate their fire on the imperial commander, even as the other mech launches barrages of rockets into the USS CHQ.

The volume of fire, and ferocity of the Marauders particle cannons, is too fierce for the imperial CHQ.

With a deafening bang, the mech crashes to the ground, even as it's internal magazines erupt.

Even as the commander falls, his troops focus their fire on his target. Determined to avenge him, cavalry and the remaining mech rain explosive death on the CHQ.

His wounds beginning to tell, the USS commander tries to momentarily stave off critical systems failiure, but just as he gets some motive function back, a shell from the enemy cavalry element rips through a opening in the armour. The metal giant crumples, like a puppet with it's strings cut!
With the way into the base at least partially open, the imperials light hovertank guns the engines and makes it inside the base and into the relative safety of a quonset, out of the line of fire from the towers. The crews celebration is cut short however, when the heavy cavalry element catches up to them. AT rounds and machinegun fire tears at the armour of the light tank, denting the steel plates and ripping gashes in the armoured skirt.

 Following the path opened by the tank, imperial mobile infantry is not far behind. As they enter the gates they come face to face with the heavy mech.
As they are inside his reach, they fire without suffering any in return. Dented armour and chipped paint is their only reward.
They'd not counted on the enemy soldiers in the towers being able to fire at them with much efficiency, an error they realized far too late. Before they could speed past the gates, they are gunned down!

Knowing that the mission is almost lost, the imperial heavy cavalry charges through the gates, firing shell after shell at the generator at the far end of the base.

 The USS foot follow the now unsupported tank into the open, throwing grenades and firing AT rockets.
Tracks shatter, armour ruptures and the tank skid to a halt, but the crew keeps firing round after round at the generator with zelous efficiency.

The Imperial light cavalry limps towards the generator, adding it's fire to the other tank's, heedless of the damage it's sustaining from it's enemies.

Still dueling with the marauder, the remaining imperial mech can see the writing on the wall. His comrades zealous devotion to the mission will not be in vain he wows, but he must report to his superiors, while his machine can still get out under it's own steam.

The generator is still functional, but it's damaged and those of his comrades that survived will be ransomed. The battle might be lost, but the war is far from over..

A victory for the USS, albeit a costly one. One mech out of action and another severly damaged. Worse still is the damage to the fusion generator. But they have prisoners, and the enemy mech might at least be stripped for parts. Hopefully this will make command realize the precarious situation they face in the border worlds...

My first game was a blast! Some tactical blunders and less than optimal choices aside, it was a good first outing. I've already started looking at more scenarioes for clashes between the USS and the NIJA, and a few other parties as well :)

I hope you've liked it, more and better things to follow!

Til next time!