Mark Croft of October Wargames has spent his 4th article reflecting on some of the rules along with a look at a recent battle which great images showing various turns!
By Mark Croft
Having been playing Antares for 4 months now we have started to play with some of the scenarios in the rule book beyond the war gaming staple of line up opposite and shoot each other. This was great while learning the basic rules. I did find that my Ghar had a bit of an advantage as no one was entirely sure how to deal with the RES 12 and adaptable weapons, the outcasts however were often easily dealt with!
As we added more terrain and terrain rules this got a lot harder for me, people learnt assault suits don’t do well in getting into terrain and can’t shoot less than 10” so it became a fine balancing act of risky charges (failing with AG 3 usually) and hovering at weapon range. This made the later games much more challenging for me and a bit easier for my opponents.
The very first scenario I played was against Brett, we rolled for a random scenario, but at this point hadn’t appreciated that there were both Matched and Narrative scenarios. As a result we played Narrative scenario 4: Bridge Head. Brett defended with his concord and I attacked with my Ghar.
I got off to a good start destroying the X launcher in turn one, but it soon went downhill with me failing my reserve rolls and Brett bringing his in without a problem. This let Brett concentrate his firepower and start adding pins to units. A lucky shot and a failed reactor save later the Ghar were looking rather thin on the ground. Coupled with the assault squad failing to charge the enemy (an order test failure rather than an agility test) and it was all over for me, Brett emerged victorious. A very enjoyable scenario with the only changes being the defender being more central to the board so a lot closer to begin with and rolling for reserves. Simple changes that lead to a very different game.
The second scenario I played was against Ben Rubery our 5th player (an existing Antares player who had no opponents at the club until he told us to apply for the Initiative programme). He brought an army I had been dreading to fight, Rebel Ghar! Immune to their first pin and with a whopping 11 order dice in 500pts my 4 die were greatly outnumbered. The amount of firepower the dish out means I’ll be rolling 10’s for my suits sooner rather than later. Not a game I thought I would win.
We rolled Scenario and got number 5: Return to Base camp. Ben chose to defend. He activated his command squad and was able to use everything in his deployment zone straight away! I survived somehow and attacked with amped up squads opening fire and by the end of the first turn the creeper was dead from concentrated fire. Turn two only one of bens units appeared, and due to the scenario randomly picking where you come onto the board it was far away from the action giving me more time to take the rebels apart, this time it was the command squad and some extra pins on the black guard. Turn 3 still no reserves for Ben and at this point I was able to destroy the rest of the units in base camp (except the Tectorists!). By the end of the game Ben had been able to bring his whole force on but not in a way they could support each other or where he needed them, the rebels were destroyed, although the highlight for me was killing a squad of Tectorists which has to been the hardest thing I’ve ever done with each model needing to be specifically targeted!
A very enjoyable scenario and one that made a seemingly impossible game a lot easier, definitely a favourite for me, though with the unfortunate side effect of me know wanting a Rebel force!
The final scenario played was number 4: Hold the line, a defend and attack mission with the attacker needing to take over 3 defended locations, I played Artur whose Boromites decided to defend, with high command and even higher res in cover this favoured them. Artur had a mixture of Mag support and shooting squads as well as some Lavamites which could be used to counterattack with a nasty punch. He sensibly spread out occupying all three positions, where as I deployed my fore together allowing me to concentrate on a single point and then (if my play worked) move onto the next target.
This generally worked; a very successful sonic bombardment and the terrain hampered his Mag support from being able to fully fire and some lucky rolls from disruption ammo certainly helped pile on the pins. I lost my outcasts (so what) to a Lavamite brood which was then crushed in the open by my assault squad.
My assault squad went to further heroics scoring a lucky shot with each shot from their gouger guns against a mass compactor work gang, who then failed each save resulting in a break test which they did heroically pass removing the pin they were given! At least they were forced down.
By the end of the game I had taken two of the positions from Artur (mainly due to Tectorists rushing in to claim them) netting me the victory.
Again another fun scenario and something different to a pitched battle, I’m certainly looking forward to trying the rest out and at bigger point sizes.
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