A couple fresh new players this week, and Brad brought his terrain along, so it was a nice big chaotic learning game.
We were running 60 can teams, so with new players it was pretty much a guarantee we wouldn’t finish, but lots of cars means lots of interactions, and that’s always a good thing when you’re learning (whereas finishing and somebody winning is a whole lot less useful).
We got off to a gloriously messy start. The three cars on the road in the front line got off to a decent start, but the yellow truck had to get off the shoulder and that threw everybody else off.
I managed to position the Cougar decently in the first phase and lined up a Slip Away opportunity for gear 2. The Cougar (silver) bumped the GTX (green), which put the GTX comfortably in the lead. As a performance car with only armour and smoke, I wanted him way ahead before the rest of the pack hit gate 1.
The GTX was doing well at this point, but the Cougar and my Manx (the first buggy way in the back) got pretty bogged down in that starting pileup. I was able to keep them in good shape, but they were moving pretty slow. Some I tend to soft up early and fast, that meant a lot of swerves, veers, and evades.
More cars started to get free of the pack around this point, so I made plans to leave the track and cut across the very busy centre of the table with the GTX. This would mean some risky high gear maneuvering.
The Cougar and the Manx were getting ready to break free of the mess at this point, but a wipeout for the Manx left it spinning into the path of the Cougar, slowing them both down again.
We started to spread out a bit more as the gear phases outstripped some of the vehicles. It also gave me the chance to get the Cougar back in the game.
The jeep with the big gun opted to take the long safe route along the track instead of following the GTX through the middle. This meant my GTX would approach it head-on, and my smoke would be useless. My Cougar suddenly needed to get its machine guns into play.
The Cougar was able to land several hits over the next couple phases, and the jeep became our second casualty just before it rounded the corner and escaped.
And that’s pretty much where we ended this particular learning game. A couple vehicles trashed, and the rest of them spread all over the place. Good fun.
I think we wrapped up our ‘Darker Horizons’-style campaign the other night. This Capture the Flag scenario was our 4th of an intended 5 events, but I’m significantly ahead at this point and I think we’re going to call it rather than dragging it out. Three of us for this one, with Dave fielding a truck and a couple cars (one might be performance?) and Steve throwing down a couple performance cars and a buggy. I had 3 cars, two of which were performance.
I spent the cans earned last month putting a turret-mounted harpoon onto my basic car, which wasn’t necessarily a good call, but was certainly weird. Led to a lot of confusing situations. What gear is a car in if I’m hauling it backwards into my rear end? What happens after it’s hit my own side and still has remaining uncancelled hits (does it keep going in a slingshot effect)?
In our previous game, that basic car with nothing but extra armour was a real champion, but the harpoon did a lot of damage to him. By the time I was close enough to use it, the odds were pretty good that I’d drag somebody right into me. Also, we had a *lot* of explosive barrels in the field, so I caught myself in a lot of explosions as well. I think he had 1 point of hull left at the game’s conclusion, out of 12. Most of that was harpoon related. Definitely effective, though, in terms of ‘redirecting traffic flow’. Certainly kept a few cars away from flags, while my other cars got mean.
In terms of maneuvering, I got off to a rough start. A lot of terrain in my immediate vicinity coupled with some overly aggressive shifting on my part put me at risk of some early wipeouts, so I ended up making a lot of weird lateral moves that didn’t cover much ground. I managed to stay on the right side of 6 hazards, but it meant I wasn’t going to be the first one to any flag; I was going to have to *take* one.
My Corvette spent much of the game trading shots and blows with Dave’s vehicles on my right flank while my Mazda got itself mixed up with Steve’s cars.
Once Steve’s cars were out of the way, I just had to beat Dave’s damaged performance car (it was on this side of the arena after being slingshot across the field in the second phase) to the flash and get out of Dodge.
After snagging the flag/crate, I put the pedal to the metal and rocketed back across the arena with a series of gentle turns and long straights, careening into my edge during the sixth gear phase of our final turn (we were playing at a local shop, so had some time constraints). We all had a good time, but I think our next session will just be a one off race. I know Dave wants to try putting a war rig together, so maybe we’ll look into that. As for me, I need to find a sturdier anchor for my harpoon.
Well, we continued our Forgotten Pacts campaign last week, and it was *insane*.
Three of us again (Chris and I, plus Alex joined us for his first game of Frostgrave!), so we settled from the corners.
Three of us meant 9 treasures, so the board started with 9 barbarian berserkers. Every dead berserker spawned two more, and they started to add up fast. My warband killed about 10, and while Chris and Alex were less overwhelmed by barbarians than I was, they still took out a few each. Never mind appropriately armed miniatures, I had to use almost the entire bestiary I’d brought with me (we had boars and dogs counting as barbarian berserkers by the end).
Katie the Wolf was trying to get into this watchtower (there was a treasure on the top floor) when fresh barbarians started spawning on the nearby board edge. It was probably the most ‘popular’ spawning edge by a significant margin, and it meant she never made it to the tower door. She did manage to stem the tide for a few turns, though, and was responsible for about half the berserkers taken out by my warband.
My early game is often about sending a few fast soldiers to grab the treasures nearest my opponents. Playing this scenario again, I’d probably worry less about grabbing those treasures and instead focus on getting to those in the middle of the board. I definitely underestimated how quickly the berserkers would pile up (9 to start plus 16-18 double respawns means over 40 barbarian berserkers even *without* random occurrences), and I’d be pretty wary of those board edges in the future; every barbarian you take out near a spawn edge has basically a 50/50 chance of putting another one right on you.
Oh, and I lost another dog.