|The life of a Veritech pilot in the Robotech universe.|
Last night we played Robotech in 1/200 scale, using a slightly modified version of the Lord of the Rings rules system from GW (yes - we use those rules for everything, even futuristic mecha combat, right Brian?). The game, hosted by Dallas, was a chance to do a practice run on the scenario I will be running at PrairieCon
in Brandon this weekend. Here is a report with some photos of the game.
|The alien ranks.|
|The stoic Destroids await their fate.|
The scenario is set on Mars. SDF-1 has landed at the abandoned Mars base to try and pick up supplies, and has become trapped by "gravity mines" while the Zentraedi lead an ambush. In this game, a group of RDF mecha are trying to hold the attacking aliens back.
The Zentraedi have 8 turns to knock out the five Destroids AND get at least five of their battle pods to exit the far side of the table. The Zentraedi start the game with 16 pods, including one ace pilot in an Officer's Pod, three light missile pods and one heavy missile pod.
The RDF detachment has five destroids - three "Raidar X" variants, one "Excalibur" variant and one "Gladiator" variant. The destroids are supported by a pair of VF-1A Veritech fighters that will enter the game on turn two.
Dallas and Dave V. took command of the Zentraedi, while Brian and Mike F. played the RDF side. The Zentraedi would start the game with priority in turn one, and after that both sides would roll a D6 to determine priority.
|Zentraedi Commander leads the way.|
|VF-1As arrive in figher mode.|
|Alien pods advance through the base.|
The modifications I use for the LOTR rules engine allow the mecha to be whittled away by the fire of the various weapons - although in some cases (like the cannon-fodder battle pods) the "whittling" doesn't take long. But in "close combat", any damage scored immediately destroyed the opposing mecha. The "close combat" is not intended actually represent blows landed by the arms/feet of the mecha, so much as a point blank hit by one of the various hugely destructive weapon systems used by either side. It also gives the Zentraedi players an incentive to swarm the opponents, as they did in the animated series, as opposed to approaching the matter as a complicated gun fight.
|What could go wrong?|
|No problem - we've got this under control.|
The game was a real blast. The Destroids fell back in the face of the overwhelming alien numbers, trying to use their firepower for as long as possible. The VF-1A fighters made a decent entrance, and shot up some aliens, before Mike opted to use them as a means to hold up the Zentraedi Officer's pod, which was a tough and hard-hitting customer thanks to its ace pilot.
|All together now...|
|The VT pilots give the "Guardian" mode a try as they engage the Zentraedi's ace Commander.|
The Zentraedi lost four pods on the approach as both sides traded shots, while one of the Raidar X's went down to alien shooting. In one sequence Brian managed to use the heavy particle beam cannons of the Excalibur to blow away two alien pods, one right after the other.
|The Destroids are swarmed by the Zentraedi assault.|
Once the Destroids' backs were to the wall, the game got very, very interesting as the close fighting began. Mike's Veritech fighters did very well against the ace Zentraedi Officer, but he was too much for them in the end, particularly as extra Zentraedi pods showed up to finish off the brave (but, keeping with the spirit of the series, expendable) VT pilots.
|The Zentraedi Commander finishes off the last Veritech pilot.|
|The Gladiator is swarmed under by Zentraedi pods.|
|Raidar X - not long for this world...|
Dave and Dallas swarmed the thin line of surviving Destroids, peppering them with fire and hammering them in round after round of close assaults. The Destroids held out bravely, repelling assault after assault. Gradually the last two Raidar Xs and the Gladiator were destroyed. Only the heavily armed Excalibur remained. Dallas and Dave realized victory was in their grasp - they sent five pods off the table to meet the first part of the victory condition, and set in with two turns remaining to destroy the surviving destroid.
|Never tell him the odds!|
|Brian's "6" holds off the Zentraedi!|
Brian, however, lived up to his "never tell me the odds" billing, and the Excalibur incredibly managed to hold out!
|No worries for this Destroid...|
|Victorious Excalibur stares down the enemy!|
Final result was a partial win for the Zentraedi, and a big-time promotion for that Excalibur pilot!
A very dramatic ending for an outstanding game. Everyone really played in the spirit of the sides they were representing, and it made for a very good battle. Thanks to everyone who came out to play, and a big thanks to Dallas for hosting. We'll see everyone in Brandon this weekend!