Battle Report: Operation Black Box

Finally a battle report! The elapsed time since my last game session here is criminally long, and well overdue for some new content. So I wrangled together a few posses, grabbed a pal, dug up an old childhood F-14 Tomcat airplane model, and set out to play some Dinosaur Cowboys v2.6!

Also some of the inspiration for one of the posses comes from the Defense of the Ancients computer game. In other words the moba Dota 2, which just had a huge 7.0 patch update. The largest tournament for professional e-sport players of Dota 2 has a prize pool of $20 million plus. So yeah, players of that game should recognize some familiar names and roles, like Vanguard the tanky leader, or Desolator the ranged sniper.

Also I realize I mix up my past and present tense when I write these. I really don’t mean too, but it’s such an ingrained bad habit I have trouble breaking. I think it’s because I writing the session report after the fact, so I tend to the past tense, but sometimes think of new information and use the present tense. Hopefully it doesn’t throw you off too much.

Rumors have started of a strange new allegiance in the wasteland: Ascendants. Some sort of sky people…old tech scientists drifting down from on high…power and concepts beyond Dusters and even Neotechnoist reasoning. Word of an artifact spreads to eager ears in the noble, wealthy circles in the city of Hope. Some kind of aerial war machine was found. Records were searched in secret, and a highly specialized and trained commando squad was dispatched to recover a “black box” from this old tech airplane.


But the commando squad was not quite as airtight and flawless as their Neotechnoist hirelings would like. One of the members, fearing the corrupting influence of old tech, went rogue and started trying to raise a posse to fight off the commando squad, destroy the black box, and stop any war machine from being recreated.

dc-operation-black-box-0019The central feature of the table was the crashed and decaying F-14 Tomcat. I used a bunch of trailing rocks to make a slide/crash zone and hopefully give some sense of weight to the plane. The pilot was likely heading for the softer jungle at the edge of the table, but fell short and crashed into a solid stone hill. Otherwise an old corral/pen containing barrels and a sabertooth skeleton, a few hills and the usual trees, and the table was set.

A simple “Edge” deployment would be used, along the long table edges, to really start close to the airplane.

A turn limit was set: 6 turns, with a situational 7th if either the black box or engine parts were still in play at the end of the 6th turn.

dc-operation-black-box-0016For this game Secret Objectives would be used. Specifically the Delta Commando Squad had to “Smash & Grab” the black box and engine pieces from the airplane. The Eastwood Rovers had to “Demolish” the same pair of objectives. And there was a main public Objective of “Capture” with the F-14 Tomcat being the contested objective.

dc-operation-black-box-0024The black box and engine parts were represented by pieces of actual computer RAM, which looked pretty neat and fit well! They would have DEF 2 and HP 10.

As for Features a few “Weapon Emplacements” were used as part of the airplane. Specifically a Flare Gun (represented by the black minigun on the model), and a pair of Wagon Blazer equivalents (basically flamethrowers) which originated from the missiles hanging under the swing wings.

Posse: Delta Commando Squad – 130 IP, $1,700 ND, 4 traits – PDFSaloon
I busted out some old, old figures for this posse. Like high school era Plague Marines from Warhammer 40,000. One of the few times I tried to do a consistent, matching color scheme. I also used my new-ish Dilophosaurus toy dinosaur, made famous as the “spitter” from Jurassic Park.

As mentioned above the intent was the mirror some of the functionality from Dota 2 items into Dinosaur Cowboy characters. Starting with Vanguard (a shield in the computer game) who is represented here by DEF 3, HP 14, and the Thick Skin trait (a one time boost of +2 DEF). Next up was Bloodthorn, a midrange damage dealer with a Volcanic Pistol and Coil Gun for utility. Then the sniper Desolator who has a Twin Rifle, but the miniature has a massive lascannon haha. And finally Skull Basher, a melee monster with a Claw Axe and one of my favorite close combat traits: Onslaught (+4 Attacks instead of +1 on Charge). The Dilophosaurus was bought as a Raptor, in this case named Iron Talon, who is Feral but has no traits.

The strategy and plan was to rush and capture an objective and hurry it off the table with Skull Basher. Sort of a trade off since he ideally wants to be moving forward into melee, not away from the violence. But he’s also significantly faster than the rest of the human members. Otherwise the rest would setup a perimeter, rain down fire, and let the dinosaur distract and hold off the enemy.

Posse: Eastwood Rovers – 130 IP, $1,700 ND, 4 traits – PDFSaloon
dc-operation-black-box-0004I think this is the debut of one of my new-ish (notice a trend?) miniature that looks vaguely like Clint Eastwood from his spaghetti westerns. I mean not as much as another mini I have, but certainly a generic looking cowboy fellow. I had painted a “fan the hammer glove” on his hand, to help grip the hammer. Otherwise the miniatures should look familiar, except maybe the defector Plague Marine. He was actually from an old, old game I wrote called “Twilight” (yes, before the movies), which is why he’s customized for an RPG and on a hex base.

Also yes I know the posse picture above is washed out. I didn’t have much luck, but the rest of the photos are spot on, thankfully.

Anyway to celebrate the newly painted miniature the rest of the posse is somewhat Eastwood themed. The leader is named Pale Rider and has a massive Ranch Blaster, with the usual plan of using Fan the Hammer weapon ability then the Speed Reload trait to be ready to rock. Alexander Keith is my recurring bartender character, and a paintjob I love. He had the mighty Streetsweeper Shotgun and the dicey, but potentially life saving trait Inspire. Sister Sara is the medic, because I really like the healer type traits like Doctor. D12 times two is a lot of potential healing. Powder Monkey was a funny case, since he looks like a Savage but is actually a Neotechnoist. So a reversal of the usual “going native” empire soldier, and is instead a naturalized wildman trying to meld with the upper classes. And finally the defector from the Delta Commando Squad was represented by Dominator (from the Dota 2 “Helm of the Dominator”). He had a Cutlass but likely not enough Defense or Hitpoints to reach combat with it. The dinosaur was a Fin, one of Papo’s better sculpts (which is saying a lot considering their high quality!) who is named after a less popular Eastwood movie: Eiger.

The plan is simple: shoot objectives. Pale Rider will be the main attacker in that case. Sister Sara will move forward with Keith, Powder Monkey, and Dominator, and try to keep them all healthy. Eiger will likely shield Dominator, or try to get into close combat as a team.

Turn 1
The Delta Commando Squad setup first, opting for the right side, or east, or kitchen-ward, haha. They were able to deploy Skull Basher far enough forward that he could reach the black box objective on the first turn. On the opposite edge the Eastwood Rovers set up in a fairly tight formation, since there were no explosive weapons to fear.

The first turn more or less nullified the Secret Objectives, which was kind of funny. Pale Rider and Alexander Keith were able to destroy the engine parts objective on their side of the table. And Skull Basher grabbed the black box on the other.

In terms of shooting at living things Powder Monkey managed a lucky hit on Iron Talon that caused Panic. The dinosaur had edged forward around the hill, but still presented a fairly big target. Iron Talon attempted a far 5″ Charge against Eiger, but failed and was a bit exposed. From on top of the hill Desolator hit Alexander Keith for 6 damage. The bartender then failed his Bravery Test and would be Fleeing. The Commando sniper had a fairly good view of the battlefield, but the F-14 Tomcat did a good job of blocking line of sight for some of the approach.


Turn 2
This turn the dinosaurs met in combat. For all the thematic dinosaur training and discpline, and both player’s idea of using the dinosaur to distract human enemies, the beasts still went right for each other and started tearing in. Iron Talon succeeded at his much closer 1″ Charge, hitting Eiger quite handily. Bloodthorn mounted the tall hill the F-14 Tomcat had crashed into, and fired down at Eiger. The Fin dinosaur took a pounding and was quickly down to 6 HP.


Meanwhile Skull Basher rushed the black box towards the table edge, as was the Delta Commando Squad secret objective. Vanguard mounted the plane, trying to draw a bead on an Eastwood Rover. The leader trusted in his DEF 3 to keep him safe in the mean time.

Sister Sara did her medical duty and healed Alexander Keith back to full Hitpoints, thanks to her Doctor trait and Small IRP. Keith had fallen back from Fleeing. The pair were a bit away from the plane, under the wing of which Dominator advanced to try to avoid shots from Desolator.


Turn 3
Both dinosaurs were in rough shape after being the focus of various attacks. Dominator rushed out from under the plane wing, used his Berserker trait for +2 Attacks, and managed a Charge against Iron Talon. The Cutlass did solid work, hitting for 9 damage, which left the surprised Iron Talon with a mere 1 Hitpoint. The dinosaur Panicked at this.


dc-operation-black-box-0073Unfortunately for the Delta Commando Squad player, Iron Talon had a 1A-5D claw, Eiger had 6 Hitpoints, but because Iron Talon had 1 Panic he suffered -1 Damage. Amazingly though the attack was a Critical hit, resulting in exactly 6 damage, so Iron Talon killed Eiger. But Sister Sara was quick to finish up Iron Talon, similarly killing the wounded beast.

At this point Skull Basher successfully captured the black box objective by bringing it to the table edge. Hooray for them!

On the deadly hilltop, Powder Monkey hit Bloodthorn quite hard, making the commando Flee. In return Pale Rider takes a tiny shot from Vanguard, who then ducks off the exposed top of the airplane.


Turn 4
dc-operation-black-box-0094So far Dominator has been called a defector. But from the Delta Commando Squad point of view, he’s a stone cold traitor. The voodoo of dice agreed, as Bloodthorn lined up a pretty tough shot from his elevated perch. Then proceeded to 1-shot Dominator with an amazing roll. He hit for 10 damage, and Dominator only had 8 HP. So that was a surprising turn of events.

Unfortunately for Bloodthorn this was also his doom, as Powder Monkey returned fire and avenged Dominator’s death by killing the enemy commando. So far Powder Monkey’s Bronto Gun hasn’t been hugely needed, as he’s shooting DEF 0 or 1 targets.

Meanwhile Pale Rider hugs the rear fin of the airplane, and not to be outdone, returns the 1-shot by outright killing Desolator. There was some concern for the Eastwood Rover player whether they’d ever be able to safely advance under the sniper fire of Desolator. But a solid roll with a Ranch Blaster sorted that problem out right quick.

In response to the unspoken leader-to-leader challenge, Vanguard boldly stepped onto the top of the airplane. He activated the Thick Skin trait, which gives +2 Defense until the start of his next activation. So total DEF 5…wow. Call the Bronto Gun pronto!

As if to demonstrate how feebly the enemy shots will be, Alexander Keith climbs up the airplane wing and tries to hit Vanguard with his Streetsweeper Shotgun…on a 13+. Needless to say he doesn’t have much luck with 2 Attacks.



Turn 5
The Delta Commando Squad started the turn with just Vanguard and Skull Basher left, whereas Eastwood Rovers still had four survivors.

The use of Thick Skin by Vanguard was interesting, since as mentioned the trait stays in effect until the start of his next Activation. Which means he wants to delay activating as long as possible, to tank as many shots as he can.

The turn starts well in that regard as the Eastwood Rovers win initiative and have to activate first. Powder Monkey moves to the edge of the stone hill and tries his Bronto Gun, needing a mere 8+ to hit. No luck, a miss!

Pale Rider sees the armored beast of Vanguard, and decides to switch targets to Skull Basher instead. He moves to Short Distance, grips his Ranch Blaster, and uses Fan the Hammer for a brutal 6 damage hit that makes Skull Basher Flee.


Vanguard is still trying to hold his activation, so Skull Basher runs away due to Fleeing, then tries to Hustle back. Certainly not the most effective posse member due to spending half the game herding an objective, then getting shot in the face when it’s time to chop things.

The Eastwood Rovers win the next initiative, so Vanguard gets possibly the best value out of Thick Skin ever as he maintained it through 4 enemy activations. However Alexander Keith and Sister Sara are focused and on a mission to roll some hot dice. Keith hits for 7 damage, even though he needs 11+, and this makes Vanguard Flee. Then Sister Sara hits for another 7 damage (at 10+ to hit) which outright kills Vanguard! And to add insult to injury Skull Basher fails his Bravery Test for having his leader taken out of action and is Fleeing.

Turn 6
At this point the game was pretty much over, but the Eastwood Rovers player wanted to get a bit showy in how they kill Skull Basher. First they won initiative, and moved Alexander Keith to the Flare Gun mounted on the F-14 Tomcat. The intent was to get the Illuminate effect on Skull Basher, applying a -2 DEF penalty to make the rest of the posse hit a lot easier. But instead Keith got a Critical hit on the Flare Gun attack, resulting in 4 damage which killed Skull Basher!

So a win for Eastwood Rovers by both objective and posse wipe!


Quite an interesting game. The F-14 Tomcat made a great centerpiece with lots of nooks and crannies to block line of sight in. The game certainly spiralled out of control for the Delta Commando Squad player. Pretty rough having Skull Basher moving the objective for a lot of it. And of course the luck of Keith and Sara both hitting such unlikely, highly damaging shots on Vanguard. Just goes to show as intimidating as high Defense is, eventually weight of fire can bring the target down.

Anyway hopefully you enjoyed the battle report! And maybe the black box will make another plot appearance in a future session…

Battle Report: Coastal Raid of New Iberia

the-bayouIn the year 2285 the small Louisiana town of New Iberia is now coastal property, thanks to the floods after Eruption Day. The location is far enough east to avoid the wasteland temperatures of the desert, and surprisingly wealthy from pelt hunting of rare bayou dinosaurs. A ragtag group of ex-sailors and dino hunters have established themselves as the Coastal Defense Force. Their leader is Ronan Cioni, a descendant of the Cioni family who were the original post-Eruption reclaimers of the town.
Although their wealth is not advertised in a flashy or grandiose way, one eager and angry man knows all about it. Dash Cioni, the only brother of Ronan, was exiled from the Coastal Defense Force and the town of New Iberia after a messy situation deep in the swamp that resulted in the death of a travelling merchant and his family. The details are hazy and rumors are whispered behind Ronan’s back about the split.
But now Dash wants revenge, and he has used the promise of New Iberia’s riches to lure Captain Pellham and his Murkfoul Raiders, a rough band of pirates and poachers.

Table Setup
I decided for this battle to use my new naval ocean looking cloth from Sails of Glory to represent the watery swamp along the outer coast of New Iberia. I used the underside of this very same cloth for my last Christmas battle report. The downside is my camera gets a bit confused and tries to balance the colors to a yellow/orange tinge, which you’ll see in the pictures. Just think of it as the gross, unbearable humidity of the southeastern USA coast.

For the table setup I went with an open ocean on one edge, where the Murkfoul Raiders would have their small sailing ship. Then inland from that a series of shoals and sandy beaches. I setup an old iron cannon on a high cliff surrounded by sandbags, which ended up looking great. Then the rest of the map is scattered islands, old ruins, a mishmash of bridges, and eventually the Coastal Defense Force “clubhouse” that is a rundown, swampy looking shack.

I decided to start this battle after the Murkfoul Raiders had left their ship and successful taken the cliffside cannon. Meanwhile the Coastal Defense Force would be responding and further out from their bayou shack. This meant a slightly modified Deep Corner deploy, in that each posse could deploy up to HALF the table width. Which made for some immediate, deadly fights.
For Features the water is Populated Water (2A-2D CTN 7 attack if you end in it). This wouldn’t affect dinosaurs who are used to living in the swamp environment, but would somewhat dissuade characters from entering the depths.
To balance this and still allow mobility I did a houserule that if you could move from island to island (across the water) you could basically “jump” and ignore the Difficult Terrain. This meant all the middle islands were easily traversable as you could hop from landmass to landmass.
For Objective I considered something fancy, but went with a straight up Shoot Out (aka kill ’em all). There is a Turn Limit of 5 for this battle.

The first thing you might notice with the two posses are they have a lot of money, to the tune of $3,000 each. The reason for this is to play the rarely utilized “top tier” dinosaurs of Titan and Longneck. The Titan would be represented by the old crocodile toy I bought for the Battle to Seattle campaign, and the Longneck would be the Papo Brachiosaurus from the same campaign.
I can imagine the Titan crocodile swimming alongside the Murkfoul Raiders skiff, then bursting from the depths to bite an enemy in half. Similarly the Longneck would be at home in the swampy terrain, with it’s long legs carrying passengers clear of the muck.

Posse: Coastal Defense Force (310 IP, $3,000)
Get the PDF Roster or View in the Saloon
DC-Coastal-Battle-0011As mentioned this posse is lead by Ronan Cioni. I wanted to get the “pelt hunter” feel so I went with my newish scale cloak wearing pistol and warhorn guy, in this case a Carbine and Totem.
Ronan’s two closest friends also happen to be brothers, just ones who are on better terms than Ronan and Dash. Arnold Bridgers is a sniper who is very far from his Neotechnoist home. In his travels south Arnold discovered a bit of a medical leaning, so he has Triage. The Try Again trait he also has fits pretty well with the “all or nothing” 1 Attack rifle. Luke Bridgers is the opposite of a sniper, preferring an Enforcer Shotgun and a bit more toughness. I could see the two of them having a storied past from their ~1,700 mile trek from New Haven. Also a note on miniatures, I LOVE the old Space Marine Scout sniper that I used for Arnold, he reminds me of a Ghost from Starcraft, and I’d really like to get and paint a new one. I can’t strip the old one because it has so many memories (playing cards on the shoulder because I was obsessed with 58th Wild Cards in Space Above and Beyond, kill markers on the gun barrel cause that was 1990s cool, bright green nightvision because what other color would I ever do, cliche camouflage cloak, etc.).
The next member is an old timer named Donato the Blue who is the one true sailor, having built and used his own ships for decades. His nickname is from his love of the ocean. He uses a decommissioned Rotary Rifle found in an abandoned silo, and keeps a Clark Airgun handy to push foes away if they get too close to him and the gun.
The final member is Ali Paek, an ambitious youngster from New Iberia with plenty to prove. He wields a hand-me-down Ultra Repeater and tends to be the happiest and most motivational of the group, thus the Get In There! trait.
For the dinosaur the Coastal Defense Force got a Longneck, rightly named Queen of Iberia. I could see this gentle beast covered in streamers and flowers while parading down main street. She’d be fiercely loyal and have many years of experience hunting smaller dinosaurs as part of the New Iberia pelt trade.

Posse: Murkfoul Raiders (310 IP, $3,000)
Get the PDF Roster or View in the Saloon
The Murkfoul Raiders have a loose ship crew feel to them with various named ranks. Captain Pellham is the natural leader with a Rustler Revolver (a suitable pirate/bandit-y gun), and wears extremely sturdy armor as a sign of his station.
First Mate Quinn is older than the Captain, but still loyal and happy with his lot in life. He mirrors the Captain by using a powerful Stampede Pistol. Somehow after years raiding and pillaging and living in muck and swamps Quinn hasn’t died yet, so the Lucky trait fit well. Speed Reload seemed like a neat story point in the sense of a quiet, unsuspecting old man who can rapidly load a gun out of reflex from some past military service.
Quartermaster Hank is potentially more loyal to his Laserbow 80, lovingly named “Starfire” from some sci-fi book he found as a child. Hank is the prime poacher in the group, preferring to use Attack – Surprise and a single arrowbolt to kill a foe in one shot.
Officer Russell is a disgraced serviceman who is dour and unhappy as he drifts from one depressing raid to another. He uses a Superior Bronto Gun, wears a dark, grumpy cape and big Witch Hunter style hat.
The final member is Dash Cioni, who motivated the Murkfoul Raiders in the first place to attack New Iberia. Unlike his brother Dash focuses on melee with an aptly named Feudbreaker. He’s ripped the Harpoon Gun from the Murkfoul ship and plans to skewer the first enemy he sees. His combination of traits is set to work WONDERFULLY in the swamp, as cliffs will be no problem to climb, especially in combination with his faster-than-a-dinosaur base Speed of 8″.
And as mentioned the dinosaur is a Titan named The Deep One (very Cthulhu vibe), carrying a swarm of ravenous young on it’s back as it waits to feast on entire villages after the Murkfoul Raiders attack.

Game Summary
Instead of turn-by-turn notes I wanted to highlight some fun parts and then show a bunch of pictures.

  • Like a cheesy horror movie the upbeat and hopeful whippersnapper died first. In this case Ali Paek got charged by The Deep One on the first turn and died in a single hit. Thematic as heck, but sad to be Ali!
  • Donato the Blue then had an ongoing battle against both The Deep One and Dash Cioni. Dash failed a 2″ Charge up a cliff, which was hilarious. Even more so when Dash was STILL trying to be greedy and Charge (1A-9D Feudbreaker to 2A is so tempting) and failed AGAIN. Basically Donato survived an extra turn or two thanks to Dash’s ineptitude. Eventually Donato did get cornered in melee with The Deep One and couldn’t use any of his guns (minimum on Rotary, and Push wouldn’t work on a dino in melee), so he tried to escape combat and died to a Snap Attack. Donato did at least mow down Dash first.
  • The middle of the map was a bit of a positional shoot out, with Ronan doing his best to fight there while still supporting his right flank. He was against a mix of Quartermaster Hank and Officer Russell (who also split his attention until The Deep One had the situation near the shack under control).
  • Quartermaster Hank missed his Attack – Surprise shot that could have done 12 damage, and died soon after from Ronan’s Carbine.
  • Since the big dinosaurs had deployed on opposite sides of the table they didn’t end up in a massive fight. Instead they did huge damage to the lowly humans. Both were more or less ignored for return fire and took less than 10 damage apiece.
  • Arnold Bridgers the sniper was the most sniper-y sniper I’ve seen in a while. He stayed planted on top of the hill he deployed to and consistently hit his Lever-Action shots. Near the end as The Deep One closed in (after killing the entire left flank) Arnold even busted out his shotgun. By that point BOTH his guns ended up needing a Reload, but that was right at the turn limit so he survived.
  • Luke Bridgers had less luck than his brother, taking an early shot from Captain Pellham and then scrambling the rest of the game to reload, heal, and survive. He didn’t get to use his Enforcer Shotgun to it’s full potential unfortunately, as the Murkfoul Raiders had such a commanding position to assault on the right flank.
  • Captain Pellham was fearless the whole game, moving forward TOWARDS a Longneck dinosaur to secure the kill on Luke Bridgers, then Fleeing melee after getting Trampled by the dino, only to heal using his Small IRP and survive a whole extra turn. Him Fleeing was especially beneficial as the Rustler Revolver has a minimum range of 1…always keep a way to shoot people in melee! Eventually the Captain was sniped by Arnold though as revenge for the death of his brother.
  • First Mate Quinn had the best use of Lucky I’ve ever seen, although he still did eventually go down. After being engaged by the Longneck the Quartermaster managed to turn a 1-hit kill into surviving with 1 Hitpoint thanks to Lucky. Quinn even managed to Flee and keep away well enough to survive (with 1 HP) until the end of the game.
  • As for the “special weapons”, the Harpoon Gun of Dash was never used (sadly), and Ronan’s Totem was but failed to hit enough to trigger Terrify. The Rotary Rifle (in combination with Attack – Dire) did a terrific job of consistent damage though. The Bronto Gun, even with the post-BTS-campaign nerfs, was excellent as always, especially in these higher level battles with more Defense.
  • The Populated Water resulted in the only damage Officer Russell suffered. The underwater dinosaurs also tried to bite Dash Cioni (after he failed to Charge up the cliff) but didn’t manage to hit him. Jumping between islands work wonderfully and meant the middle saw lots of movement and action.


In the end the turn limit was reached before a decisive victory either way. The Coastal Defense Force was down to Arnold Bridgers (unwounded but with two empty guns) and the Queen of Iberia with 27/37 HP. The Murkfoul Raiders had First Mate Quinn on 1 Hitpoint, Officer Russell with 7 HP, and The Deep One relatively untouched at 28/32 HP.
So a technical win to the Murkfoul Raiders for having more survivors, or really to Quinn for escaping death that whole time. I think given another turn or two Arnold would have been eaten, Quinn would have been shot, and the dinosaurs would have ended up duking it out. That would have been an interesting fight, especially since both still had their Attack – Inspire left (they could eat/stomp a character with it and recover HP) and the Longneck’s lower damage profile was balanced by her Big Game Hunter trait.
Regardless the Murkfoul Raiders broke through the Coastal Defense Force just enough to grab a bit of loot and damage the clubhouse shack, but certainly not enough of a rout to completely pillage New Iberia.

Anyway the game was lots of fun and I liked the varied terrain and background story (amazing how much a little story adds to the tenseness and excitement of a situation). I had these posses built over the holidays and meant to play back-to-back with my Christmas report, but didn’t find the time. So I’m glad I got to the battle report pretty soon after.

v2.6 rules are feeling terrific, no glaring changes that I want to do. I might have finally tweaked and modified the game to it’s final state?! What does that mean for this blog? Well…an exciting announcement soon will shed some light on that.

Quick recap of my weekend games

I played two games of Dinosaur Cowboys this past weekend with my friends, which were a lot of fun. Then we went on to play some local video games like Blizzard’s Heroes of the Storm for a gross amount of hours, but at least we got some tabletop gaming in too. As a point of interest the two friends involved were the same guys from the “Four Player Madness” report almost exactly 3 years ago. Back then we used wooden tokens and the v1.2 rules, whereas now we had nice jungle terrain, plastic tokens, and the upcoming v2.6 rules to play with.
We used the desert looking table with a standard 8″ Edge deployment along the long table edges. There were a few different posses (built around the upcoming v2.6 rules):

DC-Friend-Rematch-0002The first game had a raised jungle ruin surrounded by crates. Whoever had more entities on top of the hill by the end of turn 6 (with a possible turn 7) would win. There was also a nearby wagon that had a cannon in the back, facing the hill, and the weapon could be used by an adjacent character with the stats of 2A-7D, 20″ distance.
The posses involved were the Horizon Unimatics Company (me) agains the Nashkel Miners (my friend). There was a lot of positioning and clever range band usage this match. Eventually the Thickskull ended up in melee in the middle against the T-Rex (you can imagine how that went). Although Horizon got the first kill, they had a lot of damage spread around their own posse and eventually the focus fire started enough to kill almost everyone off. Having a person sitting by the wagon cannon the whole game didn’t help the situation in the middle (which really acted more like a deterrent than anything, since I think the cannon was fired only once or twice).
In the end the Nashkel Miners were able to win, both by kills and by objective.

DC-Friend-Rematch-0001The second game we lowered the raised ruin section and replaced it with a patch of crates. The objective this time was to collect a smattering of dinosaur eggs, although the focus ended up being more on killing each other.
This time the Deseret Raiders faced the Nashkel Miners. There was a lot of nervous ducking behind hills and almost getting pot shots at each other, but eventually the Nashkel Miners rushed their T-Rex forward to force the issue. The Deseret Raiders tried to respond (and if they had hit with the Riot Grenades the game might have gone differently), but eventually the T-Rex got stuck in, tore the Deseret leader apart, and eventually brought down the enemy Horned dinosaur as well. There was a lot of damage spread across the Nashkel posse, but not as many kills, and eventually the Deseret Raiders surrendered when they had a single entity left.

As I played with friends there weren’t as many pictures, just the few scattered through this text.

Battle Report: Thermopolis Outpost Raid with Lego!

Boom, it happened, I finally sat down and played Dinosaur Cowboys with Lego Minifigs like I’ve been meaning too since September (jeez has it been that long?!?!). I’ve had all these Lego buildings sitting around just waiting to go. So last week I set everything up, scrounged up enough vaguely weaponized Lego pieces, wrote two full 5 man + 1 dino posses, and played (using v2.5 of the rules). Of course the town used here is different than the one I took pictures of in September, obviously because I’m not going to leave the first town setup for ~6 months haha. I have a few Lego fences and trees that also made an appearance in addition to my normal terrain.

I focused on playing, not taking notes, but I’ll recall the general story from memory as much as I can.

Location, Terrain, Objective, Deployment
First of all the location is Thermopolis, Wyoming, which is fairly close to the Old Faithful geyser (and subsequent volcano) as well as the heart of the Neotechnoist empire: Haven, inside The Wall.
So I thought I’d do a bit of a narrative reversal, where Neotechnoist colonists have expanded to the outpost, outside The Wall. And then Duster locals see this as an enroachment and raid the outpost to try to drive everyone off.
Side Note: Funny how Neotechnoists are “colonists” when Dusters would be “settlers” or “pioneers”, and I call it an “output” instead of “town” or “hamlet”. Just the language that fits each Allegiance.
Panoramic view of the town from the road and horizontally (note the various vehicles are non-functional). The jungle area with the ruined motorcycle and semi-truck I saw as a kind of rusted junkyard. Then a cool little dinocart (no in-game effect), and a view of the jail building.

So Thermopolis Outpost would be the center of the conflict, with the “Good Ol Raiders” being a posse of Dusters doing the attacking, and the “Thermopolis Outpost Residents” defending. The Dusters would try to steal food crates in the hope of shutting down the town and driving everyone out, while the Neotechnoists would try to hold onto their supplies.

DC-Lego-Battle-011To achieve this I used a custom mix of the Objectives of “Capture” and “Smash and Grab”. There would be 5 food crates (pictured right) scattered around the table, each could be picked up in the Action Phase (and would be dropped on death). Whoever had the most food crates in their possession, or the most entities within 4″ of crates, at the end of Turn 6 would be the winner. To add another element I made the jail building an objective, since it represented a place of strength for the Neotechnoists, so again whoever had more entities within 4″ at the end would get the same value as 2 food crates.

To continue with the slightly custom rules, I decided to do a “Diagonal” deployment, which mean each posse could deploy in a table half made by drawing a line from corner to corner. This deployment will actually become official in v2.6 of the rules (more on that release later) in place of the current overly complex and overly pop-culture-y “Clever Girl”. Basically this:

And to add to the Lego flavor I will be using yellow 2×2 Lego blocks to mark Moved & Acted instead of my usual tokens. If the Lego block is right side up (bumpy part up) then they Moved & Acted, if it’s flipped then they just Acted without moving. This also highlights that I REALLY need to rebuy my Litko tokens to say “Moved” instead of “Move”…bah grammar mistakes!
Similarly I “based” each Minifig with a color coded 2×2 block to help them stand up.

Posse – Good Ol Raiders – 150 IP, $1,500 ND, 4 Traits – DOWNLOAD PDF or View in Saloon
We’re back to the classic text-names-on-posse-image era. Terrific looking group! No real plan or structure to the design, just picking a bunch of neat weapons and stuff that matches the Lego. Both Posses went for a cheap Dinosaur, and the classic approach of Neotechnoists taking herbivores (Runner) and others taking carnivores (Ripper). Also a lot of the names are not the most serious thing of all time…so a perfect fit for playing an already silly themed game with silly Lego :) You can hopefully tell I tried to put in some thought to the character of each Minifig, such as the “grumpy old man” Leader in Old Anderson. Similarly the rough bandit looking Gogocha and his “Lucky” trait since he seems like he’d survive rough patches. It’s a bit hard to see but Cool Kid has sunglasses on his face, and obviously a hip hat, and the “Inspiring Shot” trait to match his big ego. One Handed Bernard is one of my favorites, since obviously he’s missing a hand (pulled him outta the Lego box like that), but has clearly been scarred by the experience and now wears a helmet everywhere and carries only a shield to desperately protect himself from further harm (and in the game is the only one in the posse who wears Armor).

Posse – Thermopolis Outpost Residents – 150 IP, $1,500 ND, 4 Traits – DOWNLOAD PDF or View in Saloon
Again no real plan, sort of just went with weapons that seemed to fit the character of each Minifig. Usual smattering of traits, and only a few noticeably lower Hitpoint members compared to the Duster posse. And the “SP” for the Leader Drapkin and his wife Antoinette I decided off the cuff to mean “Sergeant Primary”, which sounds like a very Neotechnoist outpost kinda rank. And yes, Mr. The Plague is a Hackers (1995) movie reference. Similarly Hank “Mars” is because that Lego chestpiece used to be the Mars faction back in the 90s. Similarly Frosty is from the ice faction. In true Neotechnoist fashion almost everyone is wearing a sci-fi helmet. I also made the Leader look more supporty (and have traits to match) by having a walkie-talkie and a “stick of command” (which is a Variable Pulse Rifle in the game, but I imagine it as sending out shocking waves or pulses from the stick).

Starting Ugly!
So everyone deployed, with the Neotechnoists taking the “north” half of the Diagonal deployment, and the Dusters opposite that in the south. I think the Diagonal was a perfect choice for this terrain setup, because a lot of people could start right in the town in buildings, instead of having to trudge forward. I actually could see the Dusters coming into town peacefully, walking around a bit, and then BLAM just starting to shoot and sow chaos.
Here’s a bunch of pictures of how everyone setup:
Clearly some initial setup right by objectives with the intent to secure a food crate early on. Also with the Diagonal there were a lot of nearby enemies which should make the first turn intense (spoiler alert: it did! :) ).

Turn 1 – Let’s Lego Party!
The Neotechnoists managed to get the first Initiative, so Frosty moved back to the safe cover of a hill and bonus support of Hank Mars. Bernard shifted forward behind a wall, likely figuring to hop the hill next turn and attack.

On the opposite end of the table the Neotechnoist Leader Drapkin, astride his Runner mount “Eggy”, grabbed a food crate and moved far into town, behind the cover of a building. But guess who was waaaaaiting for him behind the building? Keel Greenpants and his massively oversized gun!

Back to the west side and the “duel at the hills”, the Duster dinosaur crept forward and tried to Charge 3″ into Frosty. Which meant of course that I ended up rolling a 2 for distance and failing to reach combat. Nearby behind the jail building, Cool Kid did a bit better and made his Charge (funnily enough ended up being 3″ distance as well) and started Scything ol’ Frosty. Those chainsaw thingies look hugely menacing. Also ironic because the Lego set they came from was the same ice stuff as Frosty is built from.

Meanwhile in the center of the town a duel was emerging between Gogocha for the Dusters and Antoinette for the Neotechnoists. What was really interesting is both had non-traditional weapons of a Laserbow 60 and Big Blasterbow respectively. Should be a good one! Antoinette didn’t want to be the first to leave Cover so the food crate right outside sat untouched for now. This shootout makes me REALLY want to build some roofless (or removable roof) buildings for traditional 28mm miniatures.

Turn 2 – Outpost Firefight
This turn started with the first death of the game, and that was thanks to Cool Kid slashing Frosty down. Thanks to the deployment melee was quite viable this match. Since Cool Kid uses his Action to attack and take Frosty out, he could still Move right into his next target: Hank Mars
But Mr. The Plague, after grabbing a food crate last turn, had walked down from his hilltop perch and now had a clear shot at Cool Kid. He managed to hit and force a Bravery Test from Cool Kid, which he failed (the punk!). Bernard, having heard the muffled screams from the other side of the hill, and remembering his own horrible dismemberment, climbed up and fired down into Hank Mars.

Meanwhile in the middle of the town the Neotechnoist Leader moved in. First he motivated his Antoinette with the “Get Up” trait, which restored her from 2 HP to 7 HP (that Laserbow 60 hurt). Then he fired at Gogocha to even the odds. But Keel Greenpants was still nearby, having fired and dropped back down from the building rooftop (otherwise he’d have a Shot in the Back at Drapkin). After grabbing a food crate the Duster Leader Old Anderson was slowly truddling his way to the fight, and actually was barely in range this turn to fire at the Neotechnoist Drapkin or his mount.
(Apologies for the wacky spacing and sizing on the images, I’m just lazily doing WordPress Medium size so horizontal vs vertical clearly doesn’t match)

And finally the Duster dinosaur Tangy Fangy, a Ripper, figured that One Handed Bernard had Hank Mars handled (bad pun). But Mr. The Plague would keep raining fire down from a distance, so that’s who Tangy Fangy moved to engage instead.

Turn 3 – Wait Weren’t There Objectives?
Speaking of One Handed Bernard, guess who opted to Activate first after the Dusters won Initiative? “Say Hank Mars, what’re your Hitpoints at? Hmm, ever been hit by a 3GJ Auto Shotgun at Short Distance?”
After killing Hank Mars, Bernard was very close to a food crate (somewhat stained with melted Lego Minifig).

On the other side Eggy wasn’t looking so good, nor was his passenger Drapkin (who had taken the brunt of the Duster fire). But wanting to protect Mr. The Plague, the pair rode forward and unleashed on the Duster Ripper dinosaur. First Drapkin shot, then Mr. The Plague fired his backup 1GJ Pump Shotgun, and suddenly Tangy Fangy the dinosaur had two Panic tokens and a sliver of health.

But like a well trained bloodhound, Keel Greenpants was still hot on the trail. From beneath the reins of the dinocart he took an almost-out-of-range shot at Mr. The Plague and brought down the sharpshooter.

Back in the middle, Antoinette was wounded and alone. She had backed herself into a corner of the building (thankfully without windows), which meant Gogocha and Old Anderson had to advance out of cover to try to eventually reach her. Gogocha could still reach a fence at least (and look awesome behind it).

Here’s the state of the table at the end of this turn:

Turn 4 & 5 – The Noose Closes
First of all the Neotechnoist Leader Drapkin continued his western run and ended up in the junkyard, hoping to have one turn without getting shot. At this point he had basically traversed the long side of the table.
Also I thought I’d mention the awesome orange semi-truck is actually from a new Lego set (whereas everything else I have is from my childhood). My wife bought a pair of 3-in-1 Creator sets recently as something fun to do, so this one is from the Sunset Speeder box. Being a fan of Euro Truck Simulator 2 a semi was obviously what I’d keep the set as (the other option being a convertible sports car and an F1 racer car).

Knowing that her turns were numbered, Antoinette decided to risk a shot at Gogocha, which meant leaving the safety of her building corner. The “Get Up!” heal from Drapkin meant she likely wouldn’t get one-shot killed at least.
The shot paid off, as Gogocha needed a Bravery Test and failed, so he’d be Fleeing.
Her husband was in an even more precarious position as One Handed Bernard, the seemingly unstoppable shield wielding, helmet wearing, disabled man fired super accurately at Drapkin.

As expected, the much shot Drapkin finally died. With his death a ripple of panic spread through the tattered remains of the posse (which at this point was Antoinette and Eggy the dinosaur). Antoinette actually failed her Bravery Test (necessary when a Leader is taken out of action), which is super important because she’s in a building. In the case of a Fleeing character NOT being able to move their full distance, they are Stunned instead. So basically she couldn’t run backwards through the wall, so she’d lose her Action instead. More or less a death sentence, and also a lucky save for Gogocha who would have died after another shot.

Turn 6 – Where Do We Stand?
With fewer entities left alive the turns were just flying by.

Keel Greenpants focused on taking out the Eggy dinosaur, who was trying to snatch up as many food crates as possible to try to win-by-objective. Unluckily for Keel, he missed his shot AND had to Reload.

Meanwhile Gogocha, confident in Old Anderson to finish off the Stunned Antoinette, moved backwards to secure the jail.

Old Anderson was also confident in Old Anderson (even if he’s a bit senile and talks in the third person), so he strode into the building and shot point blank at Antoinette. To add insult to injury he actually did “Fan the Hammer”, so +2 Attacks AND Antoinette would be 2″ Pushed. Since she had backed into the corner (again) this would result in additional damage. Even with all that Old Anderson still barely managed to kill her, but a kill is a kill.
(Actually this was a slight rules error on my behalf, and perhaps something I should clarify in the rules text. You take 1 damage per 1″ Pushed, BUT that’s if you actually go that distance. If you’re backed up against a wall you don’t take the damage. Which meant Antoinette technically should have lived. She wasn’t carrying crates so the overall game outcome would have been the same though.)

Feebly Eggy moved to the nearest food crate (dropped a while back when Mr. The Plague died).

In total the Neotechnoist “Thermopolis Outpost Residents” had 2 food crates (thanks Eggy!). But with the jail firmly in Duster hands, plus 2 crates on Old Anderson and 1 on One Handed Bernard (how fitting), the Duster “Good Ol Raiders” won the day! So in the words of a Duster: “Go hide inside your Wall, ya sissy Volkies! This here is our land!”

Anyway hopefully you enjoyed the report and visuals. I certainly had fun using Lego Minifigs and terrain. I think the flexibility of building and arming your Minifigs really helps for a “what you see is what you get” match to your posse. Also it’s a terrific gateway for kids to wargaming, since 28mm minis can be a bit intimidating (especially with the owner fussing over fingerprints or damage to their little pewter soldiers).

I think this match also highlighted that objectives need to DO something immediately beneficial during a standalone game, since otherwise everyone just rushes for them in the last turn and focuses on killing the enemy the rest of the time. I mention this same issue in the rules themselves, and recommend applying a Feature bonus. So I probably should have made it that you could re-roll 1 Attack die per food crate you’re carrying, or maybe re-roll Bravery Tests, or just use a normal Feature like “Ammo Container”.

Battle Report: Birthday Bash

I had a pair of fun games of Dinosaur Cowboys around my birthday. The first was with my gaming group and the second was having my parents try the game.

First Match – Friends
DC-Birthday-Bash-Friends-0001The first match was a 4 person team game with 2 people per team. Each team had one new player, who got a melee based posse, and then another player who had taken part in the Battle to Seattle campaign.

We used a simple Edge deployment, and the objective was basically “Smash and Grab” but with 5 objectives (dinosaur eggs in this case) spread evenly across the table. Having a dinosaur egg in your possession meant you could re-roll 1 die per carrier activation. The game was set to last 6 turns with a possible extra 7 turn on a D12 roll of 7+ at the end of the 6th turn (which we ended up having). And finally the building in the middle was set to collapse one activation into turn 5 (which the players didn’t know in advance).

The posses involved were…
Team 1: Sundance Stompers and Sassy Slashers (new player)
Team 2: Death Snakes and Path of Rage (new player)

The game went well, Team 2 pushed forward early with their dinosaur and Path of Rage posse, and held back on their left flank with the Death Snakes. Team 1 had the Sundance Stompers in reserve on their right flank, and the Sassy Slashers were fairly outnumbered for the first bit of the game. In the end both teams had 2 eggs each, but the Sassy Slashers were able to dive their dinosaur into the garden to get the last egg. The dinosaur died, but the Sundance Stompers leader was right nearby to pick it up and run far enough out of range. So in the end 3 eggs and the victory for Team 1.
Since I was playing with friends I didn’t take a zillion photos, but the one above should give you an idea of how the table was setup.

Everyone seemed to enjoy the game, although one new player would have liked to roll more dice (like the fistfuls in Warhammer 40,000), so I’ll have to stick to 6 attack and up weapons for him in the future, haha.

Second Match – Family
This game was a couple of days later but I used a very similar table setup. I swapped the Mordheim inn building for my new resin structure (still need to paint it), and also a hill on the side for my old aquarium terrain that looks like an Indiana Jones ruin.


Anyway like I said this game was between my parents, who haven’t really ever played a wargame. So I left out a few rules, mostly around Traits and Dinosaur Panic, and I didn’t list all the weapon special abilities until they were relevant. They both seemd to take to the rules well and enjoy the game. I took a few more pictures during a break.

The two posses were: Sarge’s Lost Platoon vs Meadowlarks

DC-Birthday-Bash-Family-15The setup was similar for this game, using the Edge deploy, but a single Capture objective instead of the Smash and Grab approach from the previous game. So whoever had the most living entities within the resin ruin or garden (anything inside the fences) at the end of turn 6 would win. No special rules or cases otherwise.

Both posses defensively manuevered for the first couple of turns, but eventually the Meadowlarks dinosaur leapt forward with a Charge into Jim Baker. The Lost Platoon decided to focus all fire on the Fin dinosaur, who was eventually brought down after a full turn and a bit of shooting. But Jim Baker had died as the first casualty. Inside the building Preacher Pike from the Meadowlarks was the first person in, but he was charged by the enemy Raptor and slowly brought down to 1 Hitpoint.
Near the end of the game the Meadowlarks were able to bring Alizzar and Sarah Love into the building, which meant they had 3 entities inside. The Lost Platoon moved The Red Stinger from his sniper perch on a far hill a bit too late, and he wasn’t able to reach the building in time. Their leader Sarge was also inside the building, but outnumbered and unable to kill enough targets. So in the end the Meadowlarks won!
The Lost Platoon was close though, as Preacher Pike had 1 HP left, and Samurai Jack (the Meadowlark leader) had 4 HP left, so one good shot on the leader could have made everyone in the ruin Flee away. But that was not to be.

Lots of fun all around, and nice to get some new people to try out the game.

From here I’ll be focusing on getting v2.6 of the rules done (again I’ll post details about that in the future), and maybe painting a few miniatures (although I need to rework my painting table so it’s more comfortable, right now I’m way too hunched over).

Battle Report: The Mountie Chase of Samurai Jack

Cavalier_townWell this week is my 30th birthday (gulp) so what better way to celebrate than a battle report? I mean, there are definitely better ways than tediously formatting text and images, but you know what I mean :)

So the motivation for playing a game was simple: I had 3 new miniatures, I had new fences, and I love Dinosaur Cowboys.

Of course a little narrative goes a long way for giving a greater meaning to the conflict. So I took my usual approach of choosing a random small town in the USA, thinking about the posses involved and their motivation, and making a simple backstory from that.

First of all, the place: Cavalier, North Dakota. You can see it on Google Maps here, and they actually have a nice little quaint town website. Apologies if that sounded condescending, I actually really like the traffic cam of their main street, looks like a nice mellow place. The town actually reminds me of the recent Arnie movie The Last Stand (I don’t care what the critics say, I enjoyed it). Plus, simply put, the name of the town is awesome.

The Villains
DC-Cavalier-Border-Battle-0017Obviously my new samurai-with-a-shotgun mini would be used. He looked like a bandit and highway robber straight up, especially when I dubbed him “Samurai Jack”. I could see him living up in Canada (the border of which Cavalier is very close to), hiding out in the wasteland of ashes, and raiding across into what’s left of the States.
But who was Samurai Jack? Just a dude with an awesome name and a yin yang on his chest? Probably. But I figured anyone crazy (and lonely?) to live alone in a desolate, ruined, ash covered country wouldn’t like human contact much. So his only other non-dinosaur Posse member would be a robotic servant (yeah yeah I know I don’t account much for robots and androids in the backstory of the game) named Sir Javier. And to truly strike fear in his victims Samurai Jack would need an intimidating dinosaur, so T-Rex obviously.
For armament and customization I knew Samurai Jack would need a shotgun (to match the mini), and the top tier 4GJ Auto Shotgun fit well. A backup 100kW Peacemaker would give him some range (16″) until he could get to 9″ and unload with the shotgun. And even though he wouldn’t have any improvement to CTN a Short Sword was necessary for flavor and to match the mini. Then some really good armor (Mesh Armor), buncha Hitpoints, and RTN improvements. No traits for Jack though, he doesn’t need gimmicks to raid caravans.
Sir Javier was purely meant as a support type character. I gave him a Variable Pulse Rifle because it’s nice and versatile, and Boom Grenades because you never know when you’re gonna need grenades. I think of him like a robotic butler for Samurai Jack, haha. Anyway his traits really supported his supporty-ness with “Get Up” and “Retreat”.
Finally the T-Rex, “Red Dragon”, who got the “Sprint” trait. What that meant was if Sir Javier used “Retreat” on the T-Rex who also used “Sprint” the dino would be hauling it 13″ + 6″ for a run, so a 19″ threat range ignoring Difficult Terrain. Kapow!
I called the posse “Jack’s Highway Terrors”, and you can download the PDF of it here: Jack’s Highway Terrors – Roster.

The Story
For every villain there is a hero, and in this case Francis Fitzgerald (named after a real Mountie of course) would wrangle in Samurai Jack.
Obviously the borders are a little looser in the year 2285, so Francis would actually be a lawman modelled after the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police, with officers called Mounties for short). But he lived in the US, in Cavalier, as part of the “perimeter force”. Samurai Jack had been a constant, uncatchable thorn to the town, and finally after a farm was burned to the ground Francis had enough.
Pooling almost all the resources of the town, Francis hired a Neotechnoist sharpshooter, took his second in command Sergeant Kolden, fired up the old cop car (well, Thickskull dinosaur) named Herschel, and headed north to bring Jack to justice.
Of course as most stories are, this one would be told from the “heroes” side.

The Heroes
DC-Cavalier-Border-Battle-0022So as I said, the leader of this posse is Francis Fitzgerald, and he’ll be represented by the new red jacket wearing Mountie mini. The pistol I painted just SCREAMS Volcanic (mainly because it has a glowing orange energy chamber), so a 400kW Volcanic Pistol would do. Yes yes I know Volcanic pistols were lever-action and have nothing to do with actual volcanoes or lava, but this isn’t 1887. Francis seemed like the type of guy who could shoot the dots off a playing card at 100 yards, so “Knee Shot” and 6 RTN would be his specialty.
Next up was Sergeant Kolden, the only other Mountie in the area. I was considering just calling him Deputee or Corporal, but I could also see Francis feeling bad for “the kid”, and wanting to give him a better title and higher standing. Maybe it also helps Kolden stomach the fact that his day-to-day is saving Raptors from trees and he hasn’t had a raise in two years. Kolden would be represented by my classic Ghengis Khan / Russian looking guy.
Finally the hired Neotechnoist, a by-the-book, tight lipped sharpshooter dubbed Winter Council. The name suited the mini I had in mind, since I used the newly painted Necromunda Van Saar with his “sparkling Crest blue” armor. His stats were as by-the-book as his attitude, with 6 RTN and a 200kW Twin-Rifle. “Piercing Shot” as a trait seemed like a good pick, since he’s a sharpshooter after all.
Herschel would be a Thickskull, because I somewhat associate civilized towns and “good guys” with non-carnivorous dinosaurs. Maybe because they seem a bit softer or something? He got “Bonus Speed” to round out his Hustle distance.
So with that the Cavalier Perimeter Force was created. Grab the PDF here: Cavalier Perimeter Force – Roster.

The Setting
New fencessssssssssss! *laser show and pumping music*

And a nice little 3’x4′ chunk of land. Considering Samurai Jack has “Highway” in his posse name, a road down the middle seemed fitting (and the fences fit so perfectly against it). Then the usual smattering of terrain, plus some of the real world fossils I used in my last report.
And yeah, I played the game solo. Which always sounds a bit sad to be playing with toy dinosaurs and rolling dice alone, haha. But I actually enjoy it quite a bit, as I get a chance to play whenever I want, without any rule arguments or stress. And on the flipside by the time this post goes live I will have had a nice team game of Dinosaur Cowboys with my gaming group of four other people (two of who have never played it before, always exciting).

I didn’t take detailed notes for this game, so I’ll do a broad play-by-play from memory and pictures, like I did for the last battle report.

Deployment and Objective
The setup was nice and standard: Edge deploy (on the long 4′ edges) and play until one Posse is wiped out. Sometimes a nice old fashioned extermination is great, especially when there is enough of a backstory to add flavor.

The Perimeter Force deployed in tight formation, with the hope of using the tall hill in front of them to shoot down into the road as the enemies advanced. Herschel the dinosaur would likely end up a distraction and method of stalling the enemy approach. Meanwhile on the opposite flank across the road Kolden waited, hoping to swing in from the side as the enemy approached. So basically, lots of “do something deadly when Jack gets here”.
The Highway Terrors went for an opposite approach with Samurai Jack deployed far to their left flank, and Javier and the T-Rex on the right. The hope was to jump the T-Rex right into threatening range, while Javier hung back as support and Jack moved up to get into shotgun range (and minimums of Winter Council’s rifle).

Samurai Jack is Found, Attack!
The Highway Terrors won first initiative, and Red Dragon the T-Rex was off to the races. Like I said base Speed + Retreat trait from Sir Javier + Sprint trait from the T-Rex himself meant he could Move and Hustle a total of 21″ (while ignoring all Difficult Terrain, as dinosaurs do). So basically a big green missile with teeth instead of explosives. You can see how awesome the dive was:
And also how Red Dragon would pretty much catch Sergeant Kolden no matter where he went.

But the T-Rex was now unsupported and alone with a huge gap to the rest of the posse. And across the road trouble waited:

I mean, still, it’s a 2 Defense beast with 24 Hitpoints and a 1A-8D attack:
(And yeah the framed picture on the wall is totally the Dinosaur Cowboys cover art)

DC-Cavalier-Border-Battle-0060The Perimeter Force responded by moving over Herschel to hopefully tie up the T-Rex (and also likely become a light dinner in the process). Sergeant Kolden edged as far back across the road as possible. Then the three humans poured everything they had into the T-Rex, but the titan still stood. Meanwhile the rest of the Highway Terrors advanced without problem, since the good guys had bigger (literally) problems to worry about.

Time to Eat
As expected the T-Rex tore into the Perimeter Force. Herschel tried to ram the side of the T-Rex, and more shots were put into the beast, but none of it compared to the amazing bite attack Red Dragon got:

In case you aren’t familiar with the mechanics of the game (although I assume every reader has read every battle report for 5 years), the T-Rex succeeded at a Charge to reach Sergeant Kolden. This meant he got +1 Attack, so his 1 Attack, 8 Damage chomp became 2A-8D. He then hit with both dice, AND got a Critical on one, for a total of 11 damage. Guess how many Hitpoints Sergeant Kolden had? 10…so…hooray one shot kill!
DC-Cavalier-Border-Battle-0071(Also I like the far left image so much I’ll likely use it somewhere in the upcoming 2.6 version of the rules)

However at this point Red Dragon the T-Rex was a mess. I think he had ~10 Hitpoints left. But Sir Javier had the “Get Up” trait, which restores 5 Hitpoints to an ally in 8″. Since Red Dragon had jumped so far ahead the initial measurement was just a scratch out of range. Thankfully Sir Javier could angle his move differently, and since the measurement is to the closest point on the ally (which in the case of a big T-Rex adds a few inches), Javier was eventually able to use Get Up on the T-Rex and heal some Hitpoints.

At the end of the turn the board looked like this:

Fall of the Dragon
Even with Sir Javier healing the T-Rex, the sustained fire of 2-3 members of the Perimeter Force, plus the slamming attacks of Herschel the dinosaur, meant the T-Rex died almost immediately this turn.

Samurai Jack was getting quite close to the action now, and ducked behind a massive fossil left in the middle of the road. After the T-Rex had fallen Francis the Mountie moved back behind the tall hill to block line of sight to the Highway Terrors. Similarly Herschel had cut across the road and into Cover, with the hope of swinging around and taking out Javier. As for Javier himself he stood behind one of the new fences and hoped to get a shot or two on the Thickskull dinosaur before it pummelled him.

Tensions Mount
Samurai Jack was behind the big fossil, Francis and Winter Council were likewise behind a tall hill, which meant the game settled into an uneasy tension of “who will pop out first!”. Because if Jack rushed forward he’d take two shots from the waiting Perimeter Force members. Likewise if one of the good guys hopped up the hill they’d get a shotgun to the face.
Meanwhile Sir Javier and Herschel had basically started their own deadly game on the other side of the road. Herschel needed to reach Javier, obviously, but with the versatility of the Variable Pulse Rifle (it has “Power Settings” which allow it to change the configuration of Attacks and Damage from say 5A-1D to 3A-3D) Javier could likely hit the dinosaur wherever he went.

The next turn the tension ended and blood was spilled. Herschel managed to Charge Sir Javier and do quite a number on him. But this also exposed the dinosaur to Samurai Jack, who could simply pivot in place and pour fire into the Thickskull, all the while remaining safe behind his fossil from the rest of the Perimeter Force.
(You can see in the right picture how invisible Jack was from the position of Francis and Winter Council, even if they had climbed the hill)

Standing Alone
The Perimeter Force managed to get the first Activation, which meant Herschel could attack Sir Javier again and destroy the poor robot. After that Herschel could still move (so nice to have rules that allow you to attack then move, instead of being forced to move and attack in a set order) so he went into close combat with Samurai Jack, in the hopes of doing a bit of damage, holding the villain in place, and potentially letting the rest of the good guys get into a spot to kill Jack.

Keep in mind Samurai Jack has a 4GJ Auto Shotgun, which gets the “Open Choke” special ability of +1 Attack at Short Distance. So Jack was firing at 5A-4D on Herschel, who had already taken a bite from the T-Rex and a pair of shots from Sir Javier. So when Samurai Jack held down the trigger the Thickskull just evaporated into a pool of superheated plasma (Fallout 2 style! :) ).
Which meant Samurai Jack was now alone against two enemies: Francis and Winter Council. The pair had used Herschel’s attack as a distraction to climb the tall hill in front of them, so they now bore down on Jack and waited for him to move from behind the rock.
The following turn Francis actually moved down from the hill to the other side of the fossil. Again the tension returned in what amounted to a standoff. Who would move first from their unassailable cover?! I could also imagine Francis yelling out “Throw down your gun, we have you surrounded, come out with your hands up” and other such cliches. I love it when the game ends up playing out the natural progression of the backstory.

The Final Firefight
Samurai Jack had killed dozens of people and raided and pillaged his way across the north. He wasn’t scared of an 8 Hitpoint Neotechnoist in a blue jump suit! So Samurai Jack broke the stalemate and edged around the fossil and simply UNLOADED into Winter Council.
And the Neotechnoist folded like a book. In other words, Samurai Jack 1-shot killed Winter Council.

And so the battle came down to the classic protagonist vs antagonist match up. But the firefight wasn’t in the favor of the good guys this time! Francis could hit Jack on 10+, or 9+ if he managed to get into Short Distance, using a simple 5A-4D weapon. Whereas Samurai Jack was hitting back on 8+ (7+ at Short Distance) with a 4A-4D weapon (or 5A if he could again get to Short Distance). And Francis only had 12 Hitpoints while Jack had 14.
Having his whole Perimeter Force wiped out, and now facing the terror of the highways, outskilled and outgunned, Francis wasn’t in the best situation.
(Keep in mind these are actual gameplay photos, not posed. So the game literally came down to a dual in the street between the main hero and villain)

Then an amazing miracle happened to save Francis’ life. He rolled AWESOME:

Oh 9+ at Short Distance you say? Let me hit you 4/5 times for 8 damage says Francis! Samurai Jack did the complete opposite and actually had to Reload his Auto Shotgun (that’s why he has the Reload token in the second picture).
And if the first shot from Francis seemed good, look at that second one! Hit 5/5 with a Critical Hit for a total of 10 damage!

So on that cold morning on an empty street north of Cavalier, the lone Mountie Francis Fitzgerald found and dueled the notorious Samurai Jack and was victorious. Time to take the villain back to Cavalier to pay for his crimes!

So Fun
That was fun! I said it above as well, but I’ll re-iterate it here (in case you just scroll through the pretty pictures, which is fair :) ). I really love it when game mechanics and the flow of a battle end up exactly how you hoped they would. In this case the backstory was a classic matchup of cop vs robber (more or less), and to come down to a duel in the street was too perfect. I remember one of my Windy River campaign games having a similar outcome, where I had setup a caravan raid (using the Line deploy) and it felt exactly like the frantic, chaotic mess getting attacked while spread out in the jungle would be.
I always take such gameplay-fits-narrative (or supports the narrative, however you want to word it) as a good sign for the state of the rules. I also am happy that, at the end of the day, I wrote and developed Dinosaur Cowboys to be the game I want to play. Sure I like suggestions and feedback, and enjoy hearing of other people playing the game, or showing to to friends, or whatever. But in the end my goal was to design my own favorite game, and so far it’s worked wonderfully. I mean, it took ~5 years of on-and-off work, but still!

Battle Report: Get to the Flapper!

ChoppaFirst of all, how has it been over 6 months since my last post?! Well, after the Battle to Seattle campaign and v2.5 release I took a bit of a breather from Dinosaur Cowboys. Then before you know it Christmas came around. And then here we are in 2015. Like I mentioned in my last post my wife and I had a kid, so that’s also been a big factor. Also getting into the computer game Euro Truck Simulator 2 (of all games?!) and back into Awesomenauts also took some time. Regardless my apologies for the lack of posts here.

But I finaaaaally took the time to sit down and play Dinosaur Cowboys yesterday, which I’ve been meaning to do for quite a while. I used a single 3’x4′ board covered with a lot of terrain, as well as some real-life fossils that I collected when I was a teenager. The Flapper area was designed to look like a small landing pad/airport with crates and a wagon nearby.

There aren’t a ton of pictures or notes because I ended up playing with my wife, so there was less time to catalog every turn.

Deployment and Objective
First of all for the sake of simplicity no Features were used. The Objective was “Escort”, where a Civilian has to basically traverse the board and escape. The Deployment was “Layered” to give the impression of fighting through a series of enemy lines (with the unspoken exception that the Civilian would be deployed in the further region from their escape area).
To add a bit of narrative flavor I figured the Civilian is an Archaeologist who found a rare fossil in South Dakota. Before he could return to the nearest city with his find the Black Hill Raiders descended on him and took him prisoner. Now the Raiders are trying to move him to a Flapper (aka the Arnold Schwarzenegger “Get to the chopper Flapper!”) to escape the area, return to their hideout, and ransom the fossil (and Civilian) to the highest bidder. Local homesteaders the Birkshire Family get wind of this plot and assemble to stop the kidnapping. So a fun little twist on what’s normally “good guys escorting through bad guys”. Remember that Flappers are Pterodactyl replacements for airplanes in Dinosaur Cowboys.

Now the posses involved might sound familiar, and that’s because they are pulled directly from the 9-page Quickdraw Rules. Both posses have $1,000 and 100 IP, so pretty standard. The Black Hill Raiders use a Raptor and focus on melee, so the Layered deployment really helped them. The Birkshire Family have quite a few powerful guns like an Ultra Repeater, 500kW Walker Revolver (when explained to my wife she said “That seems like it does a lot of hits”), etc. So the match up should be interesting. I played the Raiders and my wife played the Birkshire Family.

You can get the PDFs here:

Setup and A Few Pictures
The game lasted 5 turns.
The Layered deploy REALLY made a mess of everything. There were some possible “Shot in the Back” moments right from the get-go, due to later groups ending up behind enemies.

For the Black Hill Raiders, Betty One-Eye (Necromunda Escher Juve figure) and The Blade (Dark Sun Mul figure) deployed far to the north of the Flapper, with their Civilian nearby. The plan is to use the mix of melee and firepower to escort the Civilian and distract enemies as they went. Opposite them from the Birkshire Family is Brother Jerrid (preacher figure) and the trusty Ducky mount Drake.
The final deployment zone belonging to the Black Hill Raiders consisted of Maynard Dereus, the shotgun wielding leader (Necromunda Ratskin Shaman figure). Behind him is Malice, the Raptor dinosaur. I had wanted to use the Papo “alternate” paint scheme for this dinosaur, but I think it got bent in the storage bin as it wasn’t standing up properly.
And the last deployment zone for the Birkshire Family, which included the Flapper, had Mama Hanna (Warhammer 40,000 Schaeffer’s Last Chancers figure) with her Ultra Repeater on a hill, and nearby Papa Jonas (bartender figure) blocking the east flank.

Here you can see a few views of the deployment:
From left to right: View from the southern Flapper end of the table, focus on the middle deployment zones, high level view looking west (you can see how everyone ended up pretty much on one flank).

I can’t speak for the Birkshire Family, but I know my plan with the Black Hill Raiders was to split my enemies up. So the Raptor would move south towards the Flapper zone to lock down and distract foes there (classic dinosaur move really), while Maynard would flank into the northern split of Birkshire Family. The Civilian would Hustle every turn in a desperate attempt to stay in cover and not get killed.

Here are a few more pictures of deployment, since like I said once the dice started rolling the photos stopped coming.
On the left you can see the northern deploy, with the Civilian visible (he’s the Prospector looking fellow in the blue hat). Notice how close the Ducky is…could get ugly right away.
On the right is the Flapper “end zone”, with a few supply crates and a nearby wagon. For the purposes of this game the Flapper and wagon dinosaur are just scenery and not something you interact with.

If you’re into fossils, well, here are some zoomed in shots of a few. They make great, thematic terrain pieces, just a bit drab in color (maybe they need a gloss spray). In general they vary from nice cover pieces to full on line-of-sight blocking hunks o’ rock.

And finally some cinematic shots, first of the Black Hill Raiders leader Maynard overlooking the battlefield from his perch. Then a shot of Mama Hanna awaiting her foes in the Flapper area.
DC-Flapper-Escape-0019After Action Report
As for the game itself, Birkshire started by Charging the Ducky into melee with Betty One-Eye, thankfully avoiding the Civilian for now. The Blade counter-Charged into Brother Jerrid, who was nearby on the hill. Of course he then promptly got blasted backwards when Brother Jerrid did “Fan the Hammer” with his 500kW Walker Revolver, followed by a Speed Reload. Maynard had a terrific Saber weapon, so in the interest of utilizing that as soon as possible he climbed down the cliff and moved towards the Ducky. Meanwhile the Civilian ran forward as much as possible. On the backline the Raptor moved towards Papa Jonas but couldn’t quite reach him and didn’t want to risk a Charge. Mama Hanna fired at the Raptor to begin whittling down his Hitpoints.

Turn 2 saw the start of some long dinosaur combats. The Ducky did consistent, but LOW damage to Betty One-Eye, while she alternated between pistol fire and using her Flail depending on what the best odds were. Meanwhile the Raptor Charged at Papa Jonas, but ended up missing nearly all of his 1A-5D attacks through the course of the game. The fact that Mama Hanna used “Get Up!” on Papa Jonas meant he survived the initial Charge and then stayed in combat to futilely try to use his Scattergun.
First blood went to The Blade, who Charged in again and managed to kill Brother Jerrid before being shot down by Mama Hanna in turn. A worthwhile trade as the Civilian had a nearly unobstructed run to the Flapper now, with just Mama Hanna standing in the way.

Turn 3 was much of the same, with the Civilian taking a shot from Mama Hanna. But his substantial 14 HP pool meant more than a few Ultra Repeater hits would be needed. Eventually Maynard Charged into the back of the Ducky, and the pain started…like really, really started. The Saber hits at 3A-6D, with +1 Attack on Charge, so you can imagine how long the Ducky lasted. He basically never cleared Panic and took 11 HP of damage on the first Charge. Unfortunately the Black Hills Raider player (me, haha) didn’t use the “Berserker” Trait for a glorious 6A-6D attack (which likely would have one-shot the Ducky, combined with the existing damage from Betty One-Eye).

Turn 4 saw the Raptor and Papa again fail to hit each other. Papa unfortunately needed a Reload on his pistol fairly early on in the fight, otherwise he could do more reliably done damage that way instead of a risky 1A-5D Scattergun shot hitting on 8+. Luckily the Raptor is hitting on 8+ as well. The Civilian is within a turn of the Flapper now, but took another shot from Mama Hanna on the way and is down to 5 HP. As expected the Ducky didn’t last another turn against Maynard’s wrath, freeing up the two Black Hill characters to move towards the Flapper area.

Turn 5 wrapped up some of the attacks. After killing the Ducky last turn, Maynard had moved south, and this turn could move again and Charge at Mama Hanna. The successful Charge dropped her like a sack of bricks. This left Papa Jonas alive, and the Civilian one Activation away from the Flapper. Summoning his courage the Birkshire leader left combat with the Raptor (who failed to Snap Attack, which would have killed Papa), and angled his line of fire to get one last shot on the Civilian.
Annnnnnd promptly missed! Because he is the Leader he can’t “Yeehaw!” himself, so with that, the Civilian activated, moved to the Flapper, and the game was over. Victory to the Black Hill Raiders!
Here you can see the final, desperate shot of Papa Jonas as the Civilian rounds the hill towards the Flapper.

What’s Next?
Great fun all around! With deployment and rules explaining the game still only took about an hour. As you know I’m so happy with the state of the Dinosaur Cowboy rules. I do have some very minor tweaks (this is literally one of my TODO items: – Fix capitalization in Quickdraw rules for “100kw” instead of “kW”), but otherwise it’s all good.
I won’t make any promises of getting another game in on this table, or doing the Lego town I mentioned in my last post. Instead I’ll just say hopefully I talk to you again soon!

Battle Report: Fight for Flaming Gorge

Encounter Overview
Flaming-Gorge-sceneryIt’s been a long while since a non-Windy River campaign report. But enough factors compounded that made me want to run a standalone game of Dinosaur Cowboys. First of all I just finished one of my 3’x4′ boards, of which I’ll eventually have two that join together to give me 6’x4′ of playing space, or two side-by-side games. I also bought the new Papo Dimetrodon (“Fin” in this game) and Papo Carnotaurus (could be a bunch, but I ran it as a Raptor to match the Fin cost). I finished painting up my Prospector from a while back, and hadn’t used my painted Bartender mini in a game yet. And finally I got some great looking pre-painted crates from Pegasus Hobbies (not the prettiest website, but certainly the prettiest crates!) that match my older pre-painted barrels.
So yeah, time to sit down with some beef jerky, turn on some music, and play some Dinosaur Cowboys. In this case the nearly complete v2.1 that will be released soon.

The backdrop I used for the game was the Flaming Gorge area in southern Wyoming. There was plenty of water around the area, and it is close enough to the volcano and Neotechnoist city that I could see them sending an expedition to determine if the water could be a useful supply to them. And of course there would already be old pioneer Dusters there who are quick to defend (what they see) any intrusion on their land.

DC-Fight-for-Flaming-Gorge-0033aPosse: Flaming Gorge Explorers PDF roster / Saloon link
The Neotechnoist gang of three, who also had the Fin dinosaur (seemed a bit friendlier than the Carnotaurus, even though Dimetrodon was technically a carnivore). Pretty simple gang since there was only $1,200 and 120 IP to work with. High Defense all around and lots of nice weapons like Auto Shotguns.
For Traits I decided to try something fun, which was to buff out Corey, who had the Scattergun. Since it’s an Explosion weapon I figured Rapid Fire and Strain Weapon would go well together, to give him a 3A-5D attack, +2 damage to initial target, and 5 damage to all nearby targets.
Like I said, pretty “by the books” Neotechnoists.

Posse: Flaming Gorge Explorers by Carlo (0/120 IP, 0/1200 ND, 0/3 Traits)

Aura (Neotechnoist Leader)
DEF 2, RTN 7, CTN 8, BTN 7, SPD 4, HP 10, Eagle Eye.
Auto Shotgun, Quilted Armor, Small IRP.

Ace Floren (Neotechnoist)
DEF 2, RTN 6, CTN 8, BTN 8, SPD 4, HP 10.
High Burst Rifle, Cloth Armor.

Corey Jervey (Neotechnoist)
DEF 2, RTN 6, CTN 8, BTN 8, SPD 4, HP 10, Rapid Fire, Strain Weapon.
Scattergun, 80kW Six-Shooter, Padded Armor, Small IRP.

Blazeback (Untrained Fin Dinosaur)
DEF 2, DIS 6, CTN 7, PANIC D6, SPD 5, HP 17.

DC-Fight-for-Flaming-Gorge-0010aPosse: Flaming Gorge Pioneers PDF roster / Saloon link
This would be the Duster posse that is homesteading at Flaming Gorge. Again I went for a pretty standard spread of characters. The Prospector Leader mostly went melee / close focused. I wanted to try out the “Doctor” Trait some more so I gave their priest, Father Claude, two Small IRPs. They got the Carnotaurus dinosaur (as a Raptor) who I gave Inspiring Shot since that’s a great (if situational) HP recovery mechanism.
It’s always a tough call to go with 3 or 4 initial members, especially in a non-campaign game. But I figured 4 less well equipped and trained members was a better fit for the Dusters, and three specialized members were better for the Neotechnoists.

Posse: Flaming Gorge Pioneers by Carlo (2/120 IP, 0/1200 ND, 0/3 Traits)

Prospector Wippert (Duster Leader)
DEF 2, RTN 8, CTN 6, BTN 7, SPD 3, HP 12, Berserker.
Club, 80kW Six-Shooter, Cloth Armor.

Chieko Barman (Bandit)
DEF 0, RTN 6, CTN 8, BTN 8, SPD 4, HP 10.
Light Repeater.

Winterberg (Duster)
DEF 0, RTN 7, CTN 8, BTN 8, SPD 4, HP 10.

Father Claude (Duster)
DEF 1, RTN 7, CTN 8, BTN 8, SPD 3, HP 11, Doctor.
Double Barrel Shotgun, Small IRP, Small IRP.

Gorgon (Feral Raptor Dinosaur)
DEF 1, DIS 5, CTN 6, PANIC D6, SPD 6, HP 18, Inspiring Shot.

New Table and Crates
First of all, the new boaaaaaaaaard! Oh wait, it’s actually hard to photograph on it’s own because of the glare, haha.
The board is 4’x3′ particle board, which is heavy and stable so overhanging from the table isn’t a big deal. I was originally going to go with MDF but it’s super heavy, sometimes bows, and over-absorbs liquids. I drilled some wooden dowels onto one side so that I can securely join this board with the other half. Then I put the board down on a black non-slip mat.
As for painting there is a nice mottling effect from three colors of spray paint. I started with a base layer of dark green, then did some lighter highlights with a brighter green, and then finished the coloring off with a gentle dusting of brown to give it some dirt patches.
After that I spray painted my wooden edging a bright blue (the can said “Lagoon” which was appealing). The wooden edging is just pre-fabricated textured wood from a craft store. I glued the painted strips around the edges to protect the interior particles. Then I gave everything a solid double spray of protective clear coating. The board was ready to go!

The other newness are the pre-painted crates I got. I actually had to do a bit of touch up on them since the sharp corners tended to chip paint. After I touched up the corners I gave them a protective coat as well to prevent the problem in the future (hopefully). They’re a great size though, in scale with my existing barrels, and perfect for a wild west theme.

Deployment, Objective, Features
Now back to the game.

Since Flaming Gorge has a bunch of water, and that was a central focus to this encounter, I used my textured road pieces to represent the river. Yes, I’ll eventually get some simple blue cloth so it at least LOOKS like water :)
The river used two new Features from the upcoming v2.1: “Strong Current Water” and “Populated Water”. From the rulebook:
Strong Current Water: For every 1″ of Movement within the water, the entity is placed 2″ towards the nearest table edge.
Populated Water: Upon entering or Activating within the water, make a 2A­2D, CTN 7 attack against the entity from all the vicious dinosaurs lurking under the surface.
In other words a fast flowing river full of biting dinosaurs.

The alleviate the danger of crossing the river I used the crates and barrels like a bridge. The idea was they would be Difficult Terrain to climb up, but once on them you could cross at a normal pace. But then to make the crossing just as dangerous (in hindsight…perhaps TOO dangerous) I made the barrels have the Exploding feature (another new one from v2.1). Again from the rulebook:
Exploding Container: Can be attacked with statistics of 0 Defense and 4 HP. When taken Out of Action apply a D6″ Explosion that does 5 damage, and then remove this container from the table.

To make sure everyone was forced to suffer through this horrible river and deadly bridge, I put an objective marker on each crate bridge, for a total of 3, and made the overall Objective “Capture”.

For Deployment the type “Deep Edge” was used, going from the short table edges. This meant both sides would have a forward scout ahead of the rest of their Posse. I figured this fit with the theme since the Neotechnoists would be road wary and the Dusters might be out patrolling their land.

In this case the Duster Pioneers used Winterberg as their scout. The Neotechnoist Explorers used Aura as their scout. Also Prospector Wippert and Father Claude started mounted on Gorgon the Raptor.

The Dusters got the south side (nearest me) and the Neotechnoists got the opposite north side (near the skeleton). I really need to start putting a compass on my pictures.

Game Start
I tried to keep some notes, but not as much as usual since I mainly wanted to enjoy my new scenery, minis, toys, and rules. And enjoy it I did:

Turn 1
As usual the first turn was basically “oh no I deployed like this but the enemy deployed like this, time to react!”. So mostly people just shuffled around and generally forward.
Gorgon stopped a bit short of the water since he couldn’t quite make it across with a Hustle. That would have meant TWO attacks from the Populated River, since he’d suffer one for entering and one for Activating inside (next Turn).
Winterberg crossed the far right bridge to try to get his Laserbow into range, and also lock down an objective.
On the other side Aura almost had a shot at Winterberg, but would have had to aggressively move forward to get in range. Instead he played it safe and moved behind the cover of a tree.
In general I tried to less cover this time to force some shots in the open, for a change of pace.

Turn 2
And so the bloodbath begins.
The Neotechnoists won Initiative and Corey moved as far ahead as possible to barely be in range of the barrel by Winterberg. When I had moved Winterberg I actually forgot about the Exploding barrels, so he ended up awkwardly close to a dangerous barrel. Corey managed to hit the barrel which exploded glorious, doing 5 damage to Winterberg who failed his Bravery Test and was Fleeing. Normally this is just a minor setback, except Winterberg would be Fleeing backwards into a river full of hungry dinosaurs!
Meanwhile Gorgon aggressively moves across the river, but takes an unlucky Critical from the Populated River Feature for a total of 4 damage. This would be a theme for the poor dinosaur. The reason he moved up so recklessly was to get Father Claude (who was a passenger) adjacent to Winterberg. At that point Claude could use a Small IRP (plus his Doctor Trait) to heal Winterberg back to full HP.
When moving Aura I almost forgot about the OTHER river feature of Strong Current. He was trying to move to cross the river, compared to the crate bridge (after seeing the hazardous barrels explode), but then I realized the Strong Current would just push him into the barrels anyway. And even if he did get across he’s outranged by Chieko Barman. So instead Aura cut across towards Winterberg and the dinosaur to try to help there.
At this point Winterberg Fled backwards, into the river, taking 3 additional damage and getting pushed almost off the table!

Turn 3
Forward they surge!
Gorgon starts by crossing the second river, taking another 3 damage in the process (ouch!). The intent was to flank the Neotechnoist dinosaur as well as Corey and eventually Aura. Unfortunately Father Claude had some bad luck shooting. He tried to use Both Barrels against Corey at a 10+, but missed with everything. The Prospector Leader riding nearby used his Yeehaw! ability but Claude STILL missed. So much for the opening shot.
In return Corey moves to Short Distance, uses both his Rapid Fire AND Strain Weapon Trait, and then blasts Gorgon. He hit for a Crit plus one, which with the Strain Weapon Trait resulted in 10 damage to Gorgon! Just as deadly was the Explosion ability of his weapon, which did a further 5 damage (each!) to the passengers. Explosion weapons are the bane of heavily loaded Dinosaurs, since all the passengers get hit when the mount does. To top it all off Father Claude is now Fleeing, which means he’ll steer Gorgon BACK across the river.
Before the river dinosaurs can gobble up Gorgon, Aura decides to try to finish off the clump of enemies. He moves forward to shoot the Prospector at 9+, misses ALL his shots, AND needs to Reload. Dangit Auto Shotgun :(
Meanwhile Ace moves to Long Distance against the Barman, hits easily for 5 damage, and makes him Flee.
And finally Blazeback tries to Charge to finish off Gorgon, but fails by a measly 1″. The lucky Gorgon dinosaur survived for another turn…but just barely.

Turn 4
The Dusters are in a precarious position at this point. Their main push from the mounted Dinosaurs has basically crumbled. Even their long range support (Barman) is now Fleeing. And Winterberg is basically feeding himself to the river dinosaurs after having to cross it so many times.
The Neotechnoists win the first Initiative, which is brutal for the Dusters since they’ll get another shot at Gorgon before it can escape. And who better than Corey. He moves slightly around the side, this time shooting at Father Claude. He hits and kills Claude for 6 damage, and the Explosion also kills Gorgon (from the 5 damage) and leaves the Prospector Leader at 2 HP! I think the MVP for the Neotechnoists this game is: Explosion guns vs mounted dinosaurs!
Desperate to get revenge, Prospector Wippert moves next. He activates Berserker, Charges successfully at Corey, and hits him for 6 damage with his Club (well, Shovel :) ), which makes Corey Flee.
But there is plenty of support nearby, as Blazeback moves forward and bites Prospector Wippert in half. Seeing their Leader die makes BOTH the remaining Dusters Flee.
Winterberg is next, and after Fleeing backwards he shoots desperately at Blazeback, needing an 11+. A lucky 1 Attack Critical hits for a total of 7 damage. But it’s a mere shadow compared to the stomping the rest of the Duster posse received.

At this point the game was pretty much over, and with only 1 Turn until the Objective turn limit I decided to call the game in favor of the Neotechnoists. Talk about rebuffing a charge!

Game 2 Rematch!
Since the first game was so quick, and the night was so young, I decided to keep the terrain, rework the Features and Deployment, and have another game!

This time the Barrels AREN’T Exploding, and do nothing but provide Cover as normal.

The crates are fancier and use the Sturdy Container and Ammo Container Features new to v2.1:
Ammo Container: Adjacent characters can ignore a roll that necessitates a Reload.
Sturdy Container: Adjacent characters can attack with a ranged weapon with a +1 Attack bonus.
So in other words really good for ranged characters!

The water also got a change, to become a Noxious Stagnant river:
Stagnant Water: +1 Defense to any entity attacked within the water.
Noxious Water: Upon exiting the water the entity is Stunned.
So basically nice and defensive if you’re in the river, but a bit tricky to leave the river. I like combining Features like this.

For the Objective I kept the same objective markers and “Capture” Objective.

The deployment used was “Deep Corner”, from the long table edges. Because both Posses could deploy up to the middle, and because the crates and river combination were so awesome (basically +1 Defense, +1 Attack, no Reload) the middle ended up being a cluster of ranged characters eager to use the features.

I took basically no notes, aside from writing down that the game ran for 7 Turns. Here are all the pictures, then a brief recap from memory:
Basically the Dusters played it a bit safer this game, trying to use the crates to snipe and not overcommitting early on. They did try to attack the crate “stronghold” the Neotechnoists had in the middle of the river, which went okay but also had a high casualty rate for the Dusters. The Neotechnoists couldn’t really effectively commit their dinosaur or Corey, which helped the Dusters survive longer. The combination of +2 DEF AND the +1 DEF from the river made shots hard for the Dusters though. In the end the game came down to some cat and mouse (thus why it went to 7 Turns) between Barman vs Ace and Blazeback. Ace basically sat back and let the dinosaur do the work though, since she was outranged by Barman (Heavy Repeater 14″ vs Light Repeater 16″). Barman desperately tried to take down the barely wounded Fin dinosaur, but a bad pair of shots meant the dinosaur reached melee. Then a bad loss of Initiative meant the dinosaur could KEEP in melee even after Barman Fled backwards.
In the end Ace survived with full HP, and Blazeback at a mere 3 HP. If the last Initiative roll had gone better, or even if Barman had been a bit luckier in his earlier shots, he probably could have brought down the dinosaur, and then maybe outranged Ace for the win.
But that’s not how it turned out, and the Neotechnoists took the game 2 rematch as well!

Battle Report: Halloween at the Old Bunker

Halloween Supplement
Get the Dinosaur Cowboys Halloween Supplement here, which will allow you to pit your cowboys against a few deadly variants of Undead! Happy Halloween!

Encounter Overview
This game was really fun and light hearted to play. I set out my spookiest terrain yesterday night, grabbed a bundle of plastic figures from Zombies!!!, put my Undead brainstorming ideas to paper, and rocked a Halloween special event.
Why the human posse were by the old Bunker doesn’t matter. They could have been looting scrap or old world artifacts, just passing through, or investigating the strange reports of shambling creatures. Regardless the living dead started to spill from the old Bunker. Their goal was clear: get inside and destroy the point of origin (which turned out to be a trapdoor).
I started the game with the Halloween Hunters deployed in a rough circle by a giant pumpkin. Barrels scattered from blast impacts acted as a crude shelter, and a rusty Cannon emplacement was nearby. The Bunker was in sight, but a seemingly endless supply of Undead rose to block their advance.

Posse Deployment: Deploy first within 10″ of Pumpkin
Undead Deployment: D6+4 Pioneers and D3 Savages start within 6″ of the Bunker on a random side. This ended up being 10 Pioneers and 2 Savages. Each Undead rolled a D4 on Spawning for the direction from the Bunker they started at, with 1=north, 2=east, 3=south, 4=west

Cannon Emplacement: Action Phase to fire. 12″ range, 1A-12D Fireline
Bunker: Objective Trapdoor had 4 HP. Entering the building blasted the entity through a portal and to a random start point (either north or south) inside the Bunker

Variant Rules: Dual Wield
Special Rules: Halloween Supplement: Double Tap (Shotguns have 1D6″ Knockback), Fear of Death (never take BRV or DIS, rise as Juggernaught if killed), I Will Survive (+2 HP to all), Planning (do not roll Initiative to Activate, just alternate Posse/Undead each Turn)

Table Setup
Terribly shaky or washed out images of the table. My camera really didn’t appreciate a dark cloth mat instead of the usual grass or sand look:

Posse: Halloween Hunters: 120 IP, 2150 ND, 3 Traits
I built this posse entirely based on the coolest and most suiting figures. Plus it was a perfect chance to get my new latest two figures onto the table. How suitable is a Priest and a character from Zombieland for this scenario, right?! I basically started picking fun weapons and gear and worrying about the cost later, which is why I ended up with such a high Neodollar value.
First of all was Ronald Gin. Gin is a funny last name. He was my Priest figure, so instantly his shotgun pistol became a Sawed Off Shotgun. I gave him a Hunting Knife and Cloth Armor and called it a day.
His daughter is Alson the Red, and again I tried to match the figure. So she got a Heavy Pistol and Boom Grenades (since the figure has a big pack of grenades on her hip). Plus she seemed like the motivational sort, so voila I assigned her the “Get Up!” Trait.
Then Carl “Coyote” Sternah, my Zombieland figure. Dual Stub Pistols (I realized I don’t have machine gun pistols :( ) were an obvious choice, especially with the Dual Wield variant rule being used. He looked like the Bandit-y type.
Vladizlov and Trista Camus are old classic figures to me, since I’ve used them for everything from post apocalyptic to zombie hunting (see, they are veterans in the field) to my very first Dinosaur Cowboy battle report! Vlad got his usual Assault Rifle, but also a pack of Riot Grenades to represent the demolition pack his figure has. Trista got her usual 400kW Lever-Action Rifle and a backup six-shooter. Bandit for Vlad, Neotechnoist for Trista (poor Trista never gets above 12 HP).
For a dinosaur I chose my favorite one: Ankylosaurus, or in this case “Armored”. He’d be named Mace Mate, and hopefully could stand up to some clawing Undead hands pretty well with his AR 4.
In terms of IP expenditures I went pretty basic. Some -1 RMC here and there, a few extra HP, some faster movement, etc. Nothing too wild and thus why I was fine with only 120 IP.
Here is the result (note that this is before the “I Will Survive” special rule took effect, so they all gained an extra +2 HP beyond what you see):

Ronald Gin (Duster Leader)
MV 3, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 7, BRV 7, HP 12, Escape. Sawed Off Shotgun, Hunting Knife, Cloth Armor, Small IRP.

Carl "Coyote" Sternah (Bandit)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 8, HP 8. Stub Pistol, Stub Pistol.

Vladizlov (Bandit)
MV 5, AR 0, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 8, HP 8, Knee Shot. Assault Rifle, Riot Grenades, Axe.

Trista Camus (Neotechnoist)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 6. 400kW Lever-Action Rifle, 80kW Six-Shooter.

Alson the Red (Duster)
MV 3, AR 0, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 10, Get Up!. Heavy Pistol, Boom Grenades, Shank.

Mace Mate (Untrained Armored Dinosaur)
MV 3, PMV D4, AR 4, MMC 7, DIS 5, HP 20.

The Undead Menace
Here are the details on how the Undead played, as well as a picture showing who is who (and yes, that is a 2nd edition Warhammer 40,000 Plague Marine). The only difference in statistics between my game and the Halloween Supplement is my Juggernaughts only had D8 Dark Power.

Special Rules
Dark Power
– Roll when hit
– Roll >= incoming damage = Stunned and Stopped
– Roll < incoming damage = killed
– Cannot use Dark Power when Stunned or Stopped
– Ignore Difficult Terrain
– Never take Bravery Test
Shambling Horde
– When being attack never benefit from the Movement penalty
– Can’t Run
– Can Charge

Undead Pioneer
MV 5, MMC 5
Melee 2A-5D (Slowed on hit)
D6 Dark Power

Undead Cowboy
MV 4, RMC 7
Range 3A-2D (range 12″)
D6 Dark Power

Undead Savage
MV 6, MMC 5
Melee 4A-1D
D6 Dark Power

Undead Juggernaught
MV 4, MMC 5
Melee 1A-7D (1D6″ Knockback on hit)
D12 Dark Power

(Left) The mass of Undead waiting to be used plus an early version of the Halloween Supplement
(Right) A cool ruined vehicle left on the table from years and years ago

Blurry Deployment
Curse you camera!

(Left) The Halloween Hunters deployment. Gin on the Cannon, Trista in the back, Vlad in the middle, Coyote and Alson on the frontline, and Mace ready to distract up top
(Middle) The initial Undead sprawled around the Bunker, 10 Pioneers and 2 Savages! Some were already in range of the posse
(Right) The Cannon actually looks really cool up close, and in focus

Fright Night Begins!
T1: Having seen the shambling Undead arise from the Bunker the various members of the posse grit their teeth and await the onslaught. These are no amateur dinohands though, and four Pioneers drop from the combined fire of everything but Gin (who was out of range). Of those kills only a single Pioneer even got to roll their Dark Power (which they failed), since the rest of the damage was far above 6. Coyote especially impressed me, as he would the rest of the match, with a powerful opening salvo of two Criticals and two high hits.
After dropping their targets everyone moved forward…well, except for Gin. He hung back on the Cannon, just in case a quick retreat was needed. Mace Mate lumbered forward, his slow 4″ Run getting him ever closer to crushing Undead flesh.
Undead: +1 Pioneer, deploys west

T2: The firing continues in earnest. Coyote and Vlad kill a Savage each, easing some of the pressure of impending melee. Alson and Trista keep up without any problem, both killing a Pioneer. Gin feels left out so he leaves the Cannon emplacement and Runs forward. Mace continues his Run, stopping just past a wall.
Undead: +4 Pioneer, 3 deploy north, 1 deploys east

T3: Seeing the advancing horde of Undead Pioneers so foolishly clumped together Alson knew her best course of action. Grabbing a heavy Boom Grenade from her belt she flipped the ignition switch and threw it into the center of the crowd of walking dead.

BOOM! The grenades live up to their name as 4 Pioneers are shredded. Coyote looks on, jealously, then sets his own weapons to work. Along with Vlad and Trista they kill 3 Pioneers total. Gin and Mace continue their trek forward, both Running to keep up with the rest of the posse. The rest of the Halloween Hunters just shift their position slightly, with Alson moving north and Trista edging forward closer to cover. Vlad boldly moves towards to the cleared Bunker door, hoping to get inside and put a permanent end to the Undead horde.
Undead: +1 Juggernaught, deploys south

(Left) The first Juggernaught arrives
(Right) Vlad is almost to the front door

T4: The ground shakes as Mace finally reaches a witless Pioneer. Spinning furiously the Armored dinosaur smashes the Undead into pulp. Guns roar around him as Gin shotguns another Pioneer, while Alson edges into the cover of the rocks and downs a third Pioneer. Coyote levels both Stub Pistols and riddles the lone Juggernaught full of holes for 8 damage. Trista takes some time to reposition, Running forward to get into her optimal range.

Meanwhile Vlad finally reaches the Bunker door and enters. Instantly he is blasted by cold and disoriented, and when his vision clears he’s deep in an underground complex, appearing from the south entrance.
Undead: At this point the Undead in the Bunker were Spawned with three rolls on the Undead Generation Chart. The result was 9 Pioneers and 3 Savages, who were deployed throughout the tunnels.

In addition since the Bunker was breached the Undead started Spawning frantically. Now the Undead got TWO rolls on the Undead Generation Chart at the end of each Turn, instead of just one. This resulted in +4 Pioneers (2 deploy east, 1 deploys north, 1 deploys south) and +1 Juggernaught (deploys east).

Meanwhile the situation outside…

T5: Alson suddenly feels overly exposed, even in the cover of half a fence and a pile of rocks. She misses her shot on the nearest Pioneer and decides to move backwards. Gin on the other hand bravely moves forward, killing the only Juggernaught on his way towards the Bunker (7 damage vs a 4 Dark Power roll). Trista and Coyote both earn their pay, with the woman killing a Pioneer to the right and the man killing a Pioneer to the south. Mace continues his advance forward, killing the last Pioneer east of the bunker (4 damage vs Dark Power 2 roll). The Bunker door is clear once more, and Gin is very close to entering it.
Inside the bunker Vlad knows his situation is desperate. He’s not wounded yet, but the stench of death surrounds him. Easily, almost casually, he kills the first Pioneer in a long row of Undead, and advances around the corner to face the remaining horde.

Undead: The Pioneer nearest to Vlad growls and slashes dirty fingernails at the Bandit. The attack hits for 7 damage, which leaves Vlad with a deadly wound at 3 HP. The Spawn is +1 Cowboy, deploys west and +5 Pioneers, 2 deploy south, and 1 to each other direction.

T6: Gin continues his march forward, ending up right outside the Bunker door. Next Turn he can enter the sordid pit of death. On the way he kills another Pioneer, but empties his Sawed Off Shotgun in the process and needs to Reload! Coyote and Trista continue to methodically murder the already-dead, almost if they were competing for number of kills. Each bag a Pioneer this Turn.
Seeing the effectiveness of her last Boom Grenade and know the Undead tended to bunch up, Alson focuses on Reloading her grenade. Mace is much less reserved, Charging around the corner of the Bunker (since he can’t fit in the door) and trampling the first Pioneer he sees.
Inside the Bunker, Vlad kills the Pioneer that just wounded him and continues to advance. He knows the next foe may be his killer.
Undead: As the Pioneers on the surface advance, the Cowboy rounds the corner and fires his rusty revolver at the first warm target he sees: Coyote. The shot is true and the human takes 4 damage. The Savage facing Vlad easily hits him for 3 damage, which kills the poor soul. The Bunker remains in Undead hands. The Spawn roll was +4 Pioneers, 1 deploying in each direction, and the second Spawn roll was nothing.

(Left) Mace Mate continues to hold his own against the horde of Undead streaming from the bunker.
(Right) The mighty Vlad falls to the blade of a Savage

T7: Shaken by the horrible screams emanating from the Bunker, Trista fluffs her shot and misses the Pioneer in front of Gin (with 3 attacks on 7+ no less). Alson moves closer to Short range and kills the very same Pioneer, keeping her father safe and providing a clear route into the Bunker. Coyote and Mace kill one Pioneer apiece, with Mace’s method being a bit more brutal and gory compared to bullets.
Unwavering in his dedication to sunder the Undead home, Gin enters the Bunker. The entry portal puts him opposite where Vlad died, so he appears in the northern corridor. The leader hasn’t had time to Reload his shotgun so he draws his Hunting Knife and severs the head of the first Savage he sees. His eyes widen in horror though as the Savage merely falls rolling to the ground, hurt and stunned but certainly still thrashing (5 damage vs a Dark Power roll of 5!).

Undead: Even with multiple pairs of claws scratching at Mace’s hide, the Undead fail to hit him at all. The Undead Cowboy is luckier and strikes Coyote for another 3 damage. The first Spawn roll is nothing, but the second is a big improvement with +6 Pioneers (3 deploy north, 2 deploy south, 1 deploys west).

T8: Seeing Coyote pouring blood from two bullet holes, Alson desperately cheers him on with “Get Up!”. Her inspiring words restore 5 HP to the Bandit, and he’s now back to 8 HP. Ignoring the pain he focuses on the Cowboy while the Undead fumbles with his pistol. A loud crack echoes across the blackened land and the Cowboy falls dead(er). Trista regains her composure and shoots a Pioneer who was getting close enough to rush Alson and Coyote, but a lucky Dark Power roll saves the Undead (5 damage vs 6 Dark Power roll). Mace continues his relentless assault on the Undead, his strong muscles and heavy tail never tiring. Another Pioneer falls to his attack.
Inside the Bunker, Gin stabs down at the writhing, headless form of the Savage and kills it. He advances forward to face the next Undead menace.
Undead: Three Pioneers scratch, claw, and stab at Mace, but only one hits for 7 damage. The Pioneer in the Bunker facing Gin misses the dauntless Priest. And with the worse luck for the forces of darkness BOTH Spawn rolls result in nothing!

Both Spawn rolls come up with a 1-2 result of Nothing!

T9: The Turn starts encouragingly with Mace slaying another Undead Pioneer. Trista tries to support the mighty dinosaur by firing at one of his adversaries, but she misses the long range shot.
The spotlight again settles on Alson as she heaves another Boom Grenade at the closest clump of Pioneers. With a perfect roll of 12 on the single attack this…

…turns to this…

Seeing an opening Coyote nods to Alson and Runs through the nearby Bunker door. The entry portal is fickle and the Bandit winds up opposite Gin in the southern corridor. The leader hears his comrade’s feet clattering on the metal floor, and is inspired to stab another Pioneer to death, followed by a slight advance to the next Undead.

Undead: The Undead start strong with a Pioneer hitting Mace for 6 damage, and an underground Undead hitting Gin for 7 damage. The nearest Savage rounds the tunnel corner and lashes out at Coyote for 3 damage. The rest of the Undead in the Bunker shamble forward, eagerly awaiting their turn to rip warm flesh apart. This lucky streak of damage turns to frustration as BOTH Spawn rolls come up with nothing (again!).

(Left) The deadly fight in the Bunker continues, but the Undead numbers are dwindling
(Right) Another terribly unlucky set of Spawn rolls!

T10: Wanting to stand by her father in the fight against evil, Alson Reloads her Boom Grenade and moves towards the Bunker door. Covering her from the cover of a wood blockade, Trista kills the Pioneer blocking the young girl’s path. To the north of the Bunker the Armored dinosaurs tears another Pioneer in half, leaving only a single Undead creature facing him.
Underground in the Bunker both men kill another Undead, with Coyote getting a Savage and Gin getting a Pioneer. Both of them advance another square towards the trapdoor objective, but many Undead still block the way.

Undead: The Bunker forces perform well for mindless minions, with one Pioneer hitting Gin for 6 damage and on the opposite end of the Bunker another Pioneer kills Coyote! One of the Spawn rolls is nothing, but the other is +6 Pioneers (3 deploy north, 2 deploy south, 1 deploys east).

T11: Trista continues to cover Alson, taking aim and killing the recently risen Undead blocking Alson’s path to the Bunker. Alson sees her chance and dives through the entryway. The portal is finally on humanity’s side and she arrives behind Gin in the northern section. Immediately she makes her presence felt by shooting the nearest Pioneer with her Heavy Pistol. The shot hits for 5 damage but the Dark Power roll is 6, so the Undead Pioneer merely drops to the ground. Taking advantage of the opening Gin sheathes his knife and Reloads his Sawed Off Shotgun.
Above ground, the dinosaur wearily misses his attack on the nearest Pioneer.
Undead: One of the many Pioneers clumping around Mace hits the dinosaur for 7 more damage. Mace Mate is down to 2 HP from a towering 22 at the start of the game. All the Undead in the Bunker shift closer to the humans. The Spawn rolls result in +1 Savage (deploys south) and nothing.

T12: Lowering his freshly reloaded shotgun into the face of the knocked down Pioneer, Gin puts the sorry excuse for a life form out of it’s misery. He quickly steps back from the junction after hearing Alson’s hurried command over his shoulder. Just as he gets clear a spinning grenade flies over his shoulder. Alson has thrown another Boom Grenade, this time aiming for the t-intersection. The grenade looks to be sailing short (roll of 4 to hit) but Gin gleefully shouts “Yeehaw!” and the path ends up being true. The re-roll is an 11 and the Boom Grenade decimates the 4 Undead clumped around the intersection. Only 1 Pioneer remains in the Bunker, blocking the path to the trapdoor.

Above ground Trista kills another Savage at long range, while Mace fails to hit any of the four Pioneers around him.
Undead: With a horrible gurgling sound Mace finally drops to the ground, dead. Pioneers crawl all over the falling body, tearing chunks of dinoflesh from the corpse. The first Pioneer had hit for 5 damage which finished off the dinosaur. In total 6 Pioneers mindlessly shuffle towards Trista, who is all alone on the surface now. The Spawn roll results in +4 Pioneers (2 deploy south, 1 deploys east, 1 deploys west).

T13: The lone Pioneer standing between the survivors of the posse and the Bunker trapdoor is cut in half by Gin’s shotgun blast. He moves as far forward as he can, eager to finish his task and destroy the origin of the Undead. Alson Runs to right behind Gin. Above ground Trista kills another Pioneer and starts falling back to the Cannon emplacement. The powerful weapon can send a massive shot rolling right through the ranks of the advancing horde. And it truly is a horde, with at least a dozen Pioneers chasing Trista.

Undead: Massive Spawn roll of +10 Pioneers (deployed evenly on each side)

T14: Trista Runs and leaps over the old sandbags and grabs the elevation wheel of the Cannon, ready to put it to deadly use until the final Undead creature has been slain. In the Bunker, Gin lines up the most important shot of his life. The Sawed Off Shotgun masterfully blasts the trapdoor for 7 damage, destroying the feeble hinges and dropping the iron gate on the dark tunnel below. The new west is safe…for now…

Battle Report: Hills and Passes

Encounter Overview
Background: I had two goals when I setup this game: use a lot of hills, and use my new cacti models. So I placed terrain and road sections to make the table look like an abandoned stretch of dusty highway. Think “The Loneliest Road in America” Highway 50 in Nevada as it cuts through a pass.
There were some secondary goals around this game as well. I wanted to try a couple Variant Rules, since normally I play vanilla Dinosaur Cowboys. I also wanted to use higher IP and ND values to make more powerful posses.
The posses I ended up with are a travelling group of performers, artists, and vagabonds named Maudlin Travelling Band. They would be wandering the road scavenging for supplies and looking for towns to entertain. The other posse was the exact opposite, a tough gang of bandits and raiders who generally go to towns to kill and steal. They were called, aptly enough, The Dirty Dogs.
This battle report was using the v1.3 rules, so Neotechnoists got a bit of a buff with their new Allegiance benefit.
Also I’ve tried trimming down the level of detail I go into for each turn. So no more specifics on who rolled what, instead I’ll try to give a general summary of each turn. One of these days I’d really like to get a battle report map going.

Posse Resources: Each posse had 2,000 Neodollars and 200 Improvement Points and 6 Traits to allocate.
Variant Rules: Dual Wield and Last Man Standing.
Special Rules: +1 MV if a move starts on the road. This bonus applies for BOTH Standard Move and Running or Charging, so it’s possible to get +2 MV just by Standard Move + Run on your turn.

Posse: Maudlin Travelling Band: 1/2000 IP, 0/2000 ND, 6/6 Traits
I figured the Maudlin Travelling Band would hail from an imaginary small town called Maudlin, and be lead by a father and daughter. They would be general survivors and drifters so the Bandit allegiance worked best. Along the way they picked up Thurn, a Duster, who is a rougher cattle hand who grew tired of life on the ranch and now is training up his gimmicks and tricks for the road. Markus is another Duster, and happens to be in love with Ozie. Her father Gerg pretends to not notice, but there is definitely friction as a result. The Savage Wildgrass is sort of a novelty item in some smaller, backwater towns, so he completes the troupe. And Tarnation is their Ripper dinosaur, because what travelling act wouldn’t have a dinosaur?!
Now that I had some general background I needed to fill in their stats and equipment. With $2,000 and 200 IP there was plenty of high end gear to go around. Ozie got a Handcannon (terrific short range pistol) and Kaboom Grenades, mainly since I don’t use grenades nearly enough. Gerg was the melee man with a Twin Lance, and he would start the game mounted on Tarnation to complete the “knight in the wild west” image he portrays on stage. Thurn and Markus got a pretty standard set of gear with some pistols and a Light Repeater. It’s hard to not match Wildgrass’ classic Necromunda figure so I had to give him a Double Barrel Shotgun. A Flail completed his gear, and the Savage Allegiance movement boost meant he could try to advance alongside Gerg and Tarnation.
I was aiming for a denied flank setup. Markus would hold down one side of the road alone, since his gun had good range. The other side would have everyone else in a big clump. Ozie and Thurn would try to advance together since their weapons had similar range. Wildgrass would parallel Gerg but also provide some melee support in the middle if needed. He could leverage the road to boost his speed to try to pace Tarnation. And Gerg would go for the long side flank, rushing ahead on Tarnation as fast as possible to shut down any backline shooters.

Ozie Tumaneng (Bandit Leader)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 5, MMC 8, BRV 7, HP 12, Speed Reload, Bonus RMC. Kaboom Grenades, Handcannon, Small IRP.

Gerg Tumaneng (Bandit)
MV 5, AR 2, RMC 8, MMC 7, BRV 6, HP 12, Inspiring Shot. 80kW Six-Shooter, Twin Lance, Wood Armor.

Thurn (Duster)
MV 3, AR 0, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 15, Bonus HP. Heavy Pistol, 100kW Six-Shooter.

Markus (Duster)
MV 3, AR 1, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 12, Go For the Eyes. Light Repeater, Small IRP.

Wildgrass (Savage)
MV 5, AR 2, RMC 8, MMC 7, BRV 6, HP 10, Get Up!. Double Barrel Shotgun, Flail, Wood Armor.

Tarnation (Untrained Ripper Dinosaur)
MV 7, PMV D8, AR 0, MMC 7, DIS 5, HP 12.

Posse: The Dirty Dogs: 3/200 IP, 0/2000 ND, 6/6 Traits
I opted for a big, expensive dinosaur at the core of the posse. Something about the King (T-Rex) dinosaur always seems perfect for a marauding gang of raiders. I can just imagine the fear it would strike into villagers and mere peasants. So yeah, Kalgin the King dinosaur was chosen. A slew of Traits helped ensure he could survive the long trek across the table. I hesitated mounting anyone on him since his towering height makes a rider an easy target.
Anyways in terms of backstory for the human members I went with the tried and true “corrupted Neotechnoists”. Ruger and Ximenez would both be fallen Neotechnoists, perhaps dabbling in drug running and other nefarious pursuits. Two silent henchmen completed the posse, in this case Falcon Hand (sounds like a cheesy 80s super villain) who was a Duster, and The Gray Shadow who was a sniper Bandit.
In terms of gear a crude Assault Rifle seemed perfect for Ruger. It matched the figure very well and I like the juxtaposition (woa getting fancy) of an advanced civilization still using gunpowder based firearms. Ximenez went for a Sawed Off Shotgun to continue the “brutal weapons” trend.
Since one of the Variant Rules we’re using is Dual Wielding (+1A when using 2 small weapons of the same type) and Falcon Hand’s figure had two pistols, I decided he’d naturally have two 200kW Six-Shooters, hitting at 5A-2D. The Gray Shadow got a Twin Rifle for sniping and a simple 80kW Six-Shooter sidearm for enemies inside the minimum range. The “Both Barrels” feature of the Twin Rifle is nice, especially for early shots to make enemies dive for cover. A few Traits and some scraps of armor completed the posse.
My strategy was simple and mostly dictated by the terrain. The road looked to be a death zone of crossfire and no cover, so I’d split my force and advance through the hills on either side. Kalgin, Ximenez, and Falcon Hand would go on one side since they were slightly shorter ranged and could support the dinosaur well. Ruger and The Gray Shadow would be on the other. I figured Ruger might eventually cross the road while The Gray Shadow hung back in support, but we’ll see. Hopefully Kalgin could make it to melee and tear up some foes.

Ruger (Neotechnoist Leader)
MV 4, AR 3, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 7, HP 10, Neck Shot. Assault Rifle, Clay Armor, Medium IRP.

Ximenez (Neotechnoist)
MV 4, AR 2, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 12. Sawed Off Shotgun, 80kW Six-Shooter, Cloth Armor, Medium IRP.

Falcon Hand (Duster)
MV 4, AR 3, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 10, Inspiring Shot. 200kW Six-Shooter, 200kW Six-Shooter, Bone Armor, Medium IRP.

The Gray Shadow (Bandit)
MV 4, AR 1, RMC 5, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 10, Try Again. 200kW Twin Rifle, 80kW Six-Shooter.

Kalgin (Feral King Dinosaur)
MV 6, PMV D6, AR 2, MMC 4, DIS 8, HP 27, Bonus HP, Runner, Turtle.

The Table and Deployment

Deployment: Up to 8″ from the narrow table edge. The Dirty Dogs deployed first towards the kitchen (left side of the table) followed by Maudlin Travelling Band on the right.

The Dirty Dogs: Looking from my table edge Kalgin is to the right opposite Markus. Falcon Hand and Ximenez beside, with Ruger and The Gray Shadow to the left.
Maudlin Travelling Band: Looking from my table edge Markus is on the left all alone. Everyone else is piled on the hill to the right. Gerg started mounted on Tarnation.

Turn 1 – Forward, March!
As usual Turn 1 was fairly simple with everyone advancing and re-positioning after the deployment. No guns were in range yet but soon would be. Some folks Ran, some just walked. The only real surprises were Wildgrass moving onto the road behind a pile of rocks and a cactus. Ruger matched him except couldn’t find any cover, and didn’t quite make it to the cracked pavement. Gerg and Tarnation flanked to their right, and Kalgin ran along his right, both trying to stay in the cover of the hills. The road would be faster, but good luck blocking line of sight on that highway of death.

Turn 2 – Open Fire!
Kalgin powered ahead, his long strides and useful Runner trait bringing him closer and closer to Markus. Seeing this Wildgrass continued down across the road and into some rubble to bring some fire (and his flail) onto Kalgin. Ozie dropped from the hill and followed in Wildgrass’ footsteps, basically swinging the Maudlin Travelling Band’s focus from their right flank to their left. Thurn continued up the hilltop, cresting and giving him a commanding view of the upcoming firefight. Gerg also continued his flank, reaching the valley between the hill his friends occupied and the menacing mound manned by The Gray Shadow. Ruger and Ximenez simply marched up the road, confident in the lacking range of their enemies. Falcon Hand started hand-over-hand climbing the towering hill in front of him, hoping to get a shot on Gerg or Tarnation.
With a shouted command and eager pointing, Ruger ordered The Gray Shadow to open fire on Gerg. His Twin Rifle blasted the approaching enemy for 4 damage. Markus’ weapon chattered to life as bolts of energy peppered the T-Rexes hide. Kalgin took 3 damage from the assault and Markus repositioned himself higher up the hill, trying to get out of reach of the incoming dinosaur.

Turn 3 – This Way and That Way
The Dirty Dogs won the first Activation, and immediately rushed Kalgin towards Wildgrass. The mighty dinosaurs fell just short by an inch or so from getting into melee. Markus uses his “Go For the Eyes” trait and unloads point blank onto Kalgin for 8 damage, which adds a Panic token. The fire continues to pour into the dinosaur, this time Ozie with her Handcannon. Her shot goes wide and she has to Reload, but activates Yeehaw! to allow a re-roll. The shot still misses but isn’t a 1, so at least she doesn’t have to Reload anymore.
Across the field The Gray Shadow uses the “Both Barrels” feature of his rifle on Gerg, since the mounted dinosaur is rapidly approaching. The hit is deadly and does 8 damage to Gerg which kills him! The downside of unloading his gun in one massive blast is The Gray Shadow now needs to Reload. Ruger continues up the road, finally getting into range of a foe. He fires at the exposed form of Wildgrass and hits for a measly 2 damage. Wildgrass keeps his attention locked on the T-Rex, and uses “Both Barrels” of his shotgun for a brutal 8 damage. This adds another Panic token, so Kalgin certainly won’t be rushing anywhere soon. The final attack is from Thurn who blasts Ruger through a tree for 4 damage.
Quite the turn!

Turn 4 – Torn to Shreds
Markus starts the turn with another powerful shot at Kalgin, this time hitting for 6 from his mountainous perch. The dinosaur responds by trying to reach Ozie. The Panic Movement roll is 3″, so the T-Rex has to settle for Running to reach Ozie. It activates the Turtle trait which should spare him for another turn.
Ximenez moves directly up the middle of the road, firing shell after shell into Wildgrass as he advances. The Savage is hit for 7 damage but doesn’t Flee. Instead he moves into melee with Kalgin, but his wildly swinging Flail misses the hunkered down dinosaur.
Seeing his sniper pressed by the Ripper, Ruger spins and fires at Tarnation, hitting for 7 damage which adds a Panic token.
Ozie holsters her Handcannon and grabs a Kaboom Grenade. Flipping the switch she hurls the massive bomb at Ximenez. The weapon connects and hits the poor Neotechnoist for 8 damage. The big Explosion (4″ radius) showers the nearby Kalgin with hot shrapnel for an additional 7 damage. A terrific attack since the radius damage didn’t have to roll against Kalgin’s impressive Armor (due to the Turtle Trait). After all this Ximenez fails his Bravery test and is Fleeing, naturally.
Seeing the enemy starting to break Thurn keeps the pressure on. He fires at Ximenez and hits for 6 damage which kills the man just as he is about to run away. Return fire echoes from the distant hill as The Gray Shadow unloads into Tarnation with his revolver, hitting for 4 damage which brings the Ripper down to 1 HP left! The dinosaur slowly chugs forward and almost reaches the devastating sniper.

Turn 5 – Down With Dinosaurs
This turned out to be a deadly turn for any non-humans on the board. Wildgrass started the butchering by smashing Kalgin with his Flail for 5 damage, which killed the limping beast. The Gray Shadow responded in kind by firing his Six-Shooter into Tarnation again, doing 2 damage which killed the Ripper. Unlike the Flail though his revolver needed to Reload after the fusillade of shots. The Gray Shadow was now holding two empty weapons.
The grand shootout in the middle continued, and now without the dinosaurs it had become a straight up street fight. Markus fired at Falcon Hand from the edge of the cliff, hitting for 4 damage. Falcon Hand moved forward and returned fire hitting Markus for 7 damage which caused the upstart to Flee.
Ruger continued pumping shots into Wildgrass until the Savage was dead. Thurn tried to bring down the enemy leader but missed all his shots against Ruger. Ozie had more luck. Using her Speed Reload trait to quickly grab another grenade she lobbed the ticking bomb at Ruger, hitting him for 6 damage which killed the leader. This caused both Falcon Hand and The Gray Shadow to Flee.

At this point with two wounded and Fleeing humans left against three enemies, The Dirty Dogs resigned the field. End of game with a Maudlin Travelling Band victory!

After Action Report
The Dirty Dogs: So like true “dogs” we ran from the fight with our tails between our legs. Losing Kalgin right at the start of Turn 5 really sealed the deal. He didn’t even get to snap anyone in half :( At least their dinosaur was equally futile. Deploying along the narrow table edges so the melee folks have EXTRA far to run sure hurts sometimes. Anyways having both my survivors Flee after Ruger bit the dust soon after really hurt a ton. I maybe could have done some damage with The Gray Shadow as the enemy approached to kill him, but with all the hills and only a few inches of range superiority that advantage wouldn’t have lasted long. Still a terrific game!

Maudlin Travelling Band: Victory through surrender, my favorite kind for my hippie travellin’ gang. The game went pretty well overall, although half of it was just pouring fire into Kalgin, staying out of his reach, and hoping for the best. My flank to The Gray Shadow didn’t work quite as well as I hoped, although it did succeed in locking him down and emptying both his weapons. Some great surviving (aka luck) by Wildgrass in the middle. Ozie was a champ with her Kaboom Grenade trick to start the focus fire that killed Ximenez. All in all no one stood out as too weak or useless to me, aside from maybe Thurn who could have been a bit more focused and a bit less committed to his high ground position.

Complete Turn Log
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Battle Report: Cabin Raid

Encounter Overview
For this game I wanted to build a scenario around the table I setup, which included new barrels, a cabin, and the first use of my new Litko tokens (pictured to the right. They turned out great!). But specifically the focus would be the new wooden cabin I had bought and spraypainted. And of course what better use for a cabin than a raid or siege! I took a note of Ruby Ridge and Waco Texas and specifically the movie Arlington Road which drew heavily from both. To that end I wanted a group of Neotechnoists to assault a Duster farmstead.
Now I just needed a motivation for such a raid. In the Victorian era a popular idea was that of “going native”, where some troops or citizens might discard their duties to join the local population or take part in local traditions. Since the Neotechnoist/Wall idea are slightly influenced by Victorian era Britain I thought I could craft a story around this idea.
To that end Private Verhust was created. He’s a lifelong Neotechnoist sent to check on the possibility of weapon stockpiling by the Macreegin family. He instead finds a warm and welcoming household representing a life he never had (orphan childhood). Instead of completing his duties Verhust decides to stay with the Macreegin family.
After learning he didn’t return from his patrol and assigned weapons confiscation, the local Neotechnoist station at Rexburg, Idaho sends a small scouting party. The scouting party finds Verhust but mistakes his optional stay with the family for confinement. After returning with the incorrect information the 52nd Rexburg Platoon is assembled and sent to the cabin to “rescue” Verhust.
This game was quite fun to play as a bit of backstory and some special rules really added to the excitement and tension of the match. First of all the Posses involved were the 52nd Rexburg Platoon (pdf) and the Macreegin Family (pdf). As you can see I opted for higher IP and ND values for a change of pace.
Unfortunately I must have been out of practice with battle reports because I forgot to take a picture of each assembled posse!
This game session used the v1.2 version of the Dinosaur Cowboys rules.

The Scenario

The table is setup around the central cabin, which is raised on a slight hill and fortified with barrels, sandbags, and barb wire. Private Verhust got wind of the platoons mobilization and warned the family. He also offered to flee, but the Macreegin’s would have nothing of it, and instead dug their heels in to help fight for Verhust.
In the interest of keeping the game from degenerating into a flat out “charge forward assault”, I decided that Papa Jonas (father of the Macreegin family) would be out foraging and hunting on the family dinosaur (named Bluepatch). At the start of each Turn the family would roll a D12, and on a roll of 8+ papa and the dino would return from a random table edge.
The rest of the family would deploy either inside the cabin or on the hill, but not any further out. The platoon would deploy from the south edge (facing the cabin door) and advance along the brick lined walkway and surrounding vegetation.

As a twist I used old Advanced Heroquest game tiles to represent the interior of the cabin (since the roof of the model doesn’t come off), which allows for a new dimension to the game. As you can see from the picture I mirrored the outside of the cabin, so the door and both windows are marked. I didn’t have much interior furniture but I did put a table along the edge as a sort of barricade, and a chest in the corner for flair. The game tile I used is 10 squares by 5 squares, and I played as if each square was 1 inch to help ease managing movement inside the cabin.

Posse: 52nd Rexburg Platoon: 1/150 IP, 0/1500 ND, 4/4 Traits
My general idea for this posse is a high tech, hard hitting, military based unit. I knew I’d be assaulting a cabin, so some of my weapon choices reflected that. I also knew I didn’t want to involve a dinosaur as having characters only would give the posse a unique feel. Plus the savings would give me tons of money for weapons! Everyone would be the Neotechnoist allegiance, of course.
First of all I made my leader, Captain Toma. I based his equipment choices mostly on his figure, and ended up with a 200kW Six-Shooter and Long Sword. A few stat improvements here and there and he is set to go.
Scatterman is my next character, and he is built around the lethal Auto Shotgun. It has pretty good range (for a shotgun) and terrific stopping power with 4A-5D. I figured he’d take some heavy fire so I gave him the “Lucky” trait which would force an enemy to re-roll their attack.
Tenpas Terako is my sniper, so I could keep him at a lower Hitpoint amount. He’d find a hill or tree with a good field of view of the main cabin door and then try to pick anyone off who poked their head up from behind a window. Because he had the Twin Rifle (which can use the “Both Barrels” special ability) I gave him the “Speed Reload” trait to quickly get back in the game.
These first three characters had figures that looked armored, so I gave them all +1 AR at 10 IP each. But I also wanted some “lighter”, conscript style troops. Maybe friends of Private Verhust, or just angry citizens.
So I created Corporal Grove and Homer. Grove choose the solid Heavy Repeater and would be a second wave behind Toma and Scatterman. Homer had two weapons with the Explosion special property; a Blunderbuss and Kaboom Grenades. These can be devastating weapons as anyone within 2″ of the initial hit take the Damage of the weapon (in this case 5 and 7 respectively). In a cramped cabin they seemed like the perfect weapon. With the “Speed Reload” trait Homer would be able to throw two grenades in rapid succession without taking an Action Phase to reload.
My general plan is to move Toma and Scatterman forward on one flank, with Homer on the other. They would hopefully pace each other and reach the cabin at the same time. Grove would hang back a bit behind Homer and could readjust his position to any changes on the battlefield. And Tenpas Terako would sit just at long range and snipe at the cabin’s occupants.

Captain Toma (Neotechnoist Leader)
MV 4, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 7, HP 13, Bonus HP I. 200kW Six-Shooter, Long Sword.

Scatterman (Neotechnoist)
MV 4, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 10, Lucky. Auto Shotgun, Small IRP.

Tenpas Terako (Neotechnoist)
MV 3, AR 1, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 8, Speed Reload. 200kW Twin-Rifle.

Corporal Grove (Neotechnoist)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 5, HP 8. Heavy Repeater, Small IRP.

Homer (Neotechnoist)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 12, Speed Reload. Kaboom Grenades, Blunderbuss, Small IRP.

Posse: Macreegin Family: 1/150 IP, 0/1500 ND, 4/4 Traits
The important idea I needed to keep in mind when building the Macreegin Family is to make them realistic. I wanted a basic nuclear Duster family with pretty simply farmer weapons. They would have a friendly, herbivore dinosaur that is used for heavy lifting around the farm. Besides Private Verhust they would all be the Duster allegiance.
The family is made up of four members: Papa Jonas, Mama Hanna, Sis Shiela, and Brother Jerrid. I tried to think of a distinct personality for each as I find that helps inspire certain playstyles once the game starts.
In this case Papa Jonas is a simple, quiet man. Slow to anger, fine with hard work and long days, but generally not enthused or passionate about anything. He has a 200kW Six-Shooter which was a hand-me-down from his own father. I gave him the “Crippling Shot” trait since it seemed like something a hunter might use to bring down larger game. At time of deploy he’d be off the table on the dinosaur.
Mama Hanna is the definition of a “mama bear”, in the sense that she is fiercely protective of her children and home. To reflect this she has terrific RMC (6) from hours training with the family 400kW Lever-Action Rifle. The rifle comes from Brother Jerrid, and according to him he earned it wrangling Triceratops down south. In truth he stole it in Arizona before running back home to avoid the law. Regardless it is a powerful weapon. Mama Hanna also has a basic 80kW Six-Shooter in case enemies get inside her minimum range. She also has the “Get Up!” trait since I could see her motivating her children to continue the fight.
Sis Shiela is quite the popular lady around town, but isn’t much for guns or fighting, so she has a basic Derringer that seemed like a suitable weapon. She looks up to her Mama a lot and would probably deploy close by.
Brother Jerrid is a hot head with a short temper, and therefore has trouble relating to his Papa. He carries the epitome of farmer weapons: a Double Barrel Shotgun. In his view the world steps all over his family and a person has to take what they want to be successful, so the “Underdog Shot” trait is perfect. Brother Jerrid looks up to Private Verhust, even though they are a similar age, and often corners Verhust and makes him retell stories of inside The Wall.
The last character is Private Verhust, a basic Neotechnoist citizen who has a Light Pistol instead of the traditional Duster revolver. Since he has some training I thought the “Retreat!” trait is perfect, as I could see him taking control of the situation once the lasers start flying.
And finally there is Bluepatch, a Thickskull dinosaur named by Sis Shiela when she was very young. The dinosaur is extremely loyal but has slowed down mentally with age.
My plan is to have Mama Hanna and Sis Shiela inside the cabin, alternating being visible at the window after shooting. Brother Jerrid and Private Verhust would situate themselves outside in cover and hopefully slow the Neotechnoist advance before retreating inside. When Papa Jonas and Bluepatch appear I’ll just have to see what table edge they get and act accordingly. I think “charge into the enemy flank” will be the strategy I end up with for them.

Papa Jonas (Duster Leader)
MV 3, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 7, HP 14, Crippling Shot. 200kW Six-Shooter.

Mama Hanna (Duster)
MV 3, AR 1, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 11, Get Up! 400kW Lever-Action Rifle, 80kW Six-Shooter.

Sis Shiela (Duster)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 10. Derringer.

Brother Jerrid (Duster)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 12, Underdog Shot. Double Barrel Shotgun.

Private Verhust (Neotechnoist)
MV 4, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 10, Retreat! Light Pistol.

Bluepatch (Untrained Thickskull Dinosaur)
MV 8, PMV D8, AR 1, MMC 6, DIS 6, HP 21

Rexburg: Captain Toma on the right flank with Scatterman directly behind him and Homer to the right across a hill. Tenpas Terako on the left flank in an elevated shooting position with Captain Grove slightly forward on the ground below him.

Family: Mama Hanna and Sis Shiela inside the cabin, with Mama at the left (west) window. Brother Jerrid behind the west bundle of barrels opposite Private Verhust. Papa Jonas and Bluepatch off table foraging and hunting.

Turn 1 – Opening Shots
Macreegin Family deployed first, as per the scenario. Papa Jonas does not roll to appear until Turn 2+.
1a. Family wins Activation
Family: Going first in a new turn is great for getting the drop on enemies. Once targets have started moving around that +1 Miss Chance can add up, plus it’s easier for people to get into cover. Mama Hanna had a few good shots available with her impressive 21″ range, but she settled on trying to bring down Corporal Grove. Firing at long range she hits for 7 damage, which causes Corporal Grove to Flee. Hooray a chance to use my new tokens right off the bat. After her great shot Mama moves out of the window and into the corner of the cabin, which will keep her free from return fire for a turn.
Rexburg: Having a Fleeing character isn’t the best start, but at least it looks like Corporal Grove has enough ground to retreat to that he won’t be Stunned instead. Anyways I won’t waste an early Activation on him regardless. I thought I’d return the sniping favor and use Tenpas against Brother Jerrid. Tenpas had to move to the edge of his cliff to get his target right in long range. With some lucky rolling I hit with 4 Attacks (1 of which was a Critical Hit) for a total of 7 damage. How’s that for tit-for-tat! As an added bonus Brother Jerrid doesn’t Flee so he won’t get a free push back towards the cabin.
1b. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: Nice, right back to me. Those steady Neotechnoists holding onto the initiative like that. I wanted to keep the pressure on the defenders and hopefully drive them into the cabin so I could take my time surrounding it and destroying the occupants. I moved Homer 2″ closer to the cabin to get the traitorous Private Verhust into long range. Homer had hoped to rescue Verhust, but the Private is clearly allied with the Dusters and must be exterminated. Homer fired his Blunderbuss needing a 9+ to hit, but missed Verhust. He’s safe for now…
Family: I could tell Private Verhust was going to be a hot target, so I backed him off from his forward position to try to get a bit of range on the enemy. Drawing a bead with his Light Pistol the Private fired at Captain Toma but misses.
1c. Family wins Activation
Family: Having nearly died Brother Jerrid was in no mood for heroics. Plus Mama Hanna was screaming at him from inside the cabin to get inside. So he Ran towards the cabin door, and nearly made it into the interior but just fell short. At this point I’m wishing Mama Hanna hadn’t Activated already since she could have used “Get Up!” on Brother Jerrid, as that is the only source of HP restoration the Macreegin Family has.
Rexburg: Captain Toma took offense at Private Verhust’s fire, so he stepped forward and blasted his six-shooter back at the man. I edged Captain Toma to his left to get behind the brick wall and shield him a bit from shots from the cabin. Unfortunately he missed the long range shot at Private Verhust.
1d. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: My foe only had one more Activation to go so I had to handle both of my characters this Activation. That meant Scatterman and Corporal Grove. Simple enough though; Scatterman Ran forward to in front of the Captain, and Corporal Grove Fled backwards and then Ran behind the tall hill that Tenpas is on. I wanted to bring Scatterman closer to the cabin to get his deadly shotgun into play. And cowering with Grove was a necessity after that big shot from Mama. I figured I could either ease him around the flank (west side of the hill) or, if the Macreegin’s switch targets, just go back to his original path of advance.
Family: Sis Shiela was still at the east window and had a good view of the advancing Neotechnoists. She decided to fire at the closest one, who is Scatterman. With some lucky rolling Shiela hit once for 4 damage. I thought a bit about ducking her into the cabin corner (similar to what Mama Hanna did) but decided against it. Since we’re at the end of the Turn I might get an early Activation and be able to fire with her and then move out of sight. So Sis Shiela stayed at the window.

Turn 2 – The First Death
Papa Jonas rolled his D12 to try to come back from foraging but failed to get an 8+, so he won’t appear this Turn.
2a. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: I was happy to get the first Activation for this turn as it meant I can try to kill Brother Jerrid before he reaches the inside of the cabin. The best man for the job was Tenpas Terako, as 5A and 6 RMC against an unmoving target was my kind of shot. First I had to have Tenpas climb down his hill to keep Brother Jerrid in range. Then just to be safe I decided to use the “Both Barrels” feature of his Twin Rifle which would give me +2 Attacks. Now I was rolling 7 Attacks at 7+ to hit. The dice weren’t hugely with me and I only hit 2 times (1 was a Critical) for 5 damage. It’s still exactly enough to kill Brother Jerrid though! Tenpas would have to Reload from using the special ability, but that should be easy with his Speed Reload trait.
Family: Hearing her son shot down outside, Mama instantly reacts. She moves back into the window and blazes away at Tenpas. Her shots were a little too wild though and she misses all of them. So much for sweet revenge.

2b. Family wins Activation
Family: Another Activation and another chance to get revenge. Private Verhust had liked Brother Jerrid’s eagerness to hear stories of inside The Wall, so he also wanted revenge. But in his case it was blind revenge, so all he did was shoot at Scatterman. Some bad rolling meant I missed all the shots AND had to Reload. I finished up by moving Private Verhust towards the cabin door, but still right behind the nice tree outside.
Rexburg: Time for Scatterman to show the traitor what real shooting is. I moved Scatterman his full 4″ forward which put Private Verhust into long range. The massive Auto Shotgun barked to life and hit 2 times (1 was a Critical) but also a 1 was rolled so a Reload will be needed. Captain Toma is right by Scatterman though so he uses “Yeehaw!” to let Scatterman re-roll his Reload roll of a 1. The re-roll is still a miss but at least his Auto Shotgun will be ready for next turn. Anyways in total Scatterman did 7 damage (8 – 1 for Cover) to Private Verhust, who is now Fleeing.
After this Homer also moved to put Private Verhust into range, and firing at 10+ on his single Blunderbuss attack. Amazing Homer hits and does 5 damage which kills Private Verhust! The traitor is dead, and although the 52nd Rexburg Platoon are sad to kill one of their own they can’t have soldiers deserting and abandoning their missions. (Note: I’m not sure how Homer got to Activate right after Scatterman did but that’s what my notes say happened, so…yeah)
2c. Family wins Activation
Family: Sis Shiela was still at the window and had survived unscathed, although she saw the withering firepower cut down Private Verhust right before her eyes. She snaps off a shot at Scatterman, hoping to repeat her luck last Turn, but unfortunately misses. The death of Verhust fresh in her mind she eagerly ducks out of sight into the corner of the cabin.
Rexburg: I still have some maneuvering to do, so Captain Toma Ran forward and just reached the edge of the hill the cabin is on. Soon his brutal Long Sword will come to grips with the Duster family inside. Corporal Grove headed east from behind the hill and applied his Small IRP to recover +3 HP, bringing his total back to 6 HP.

Turn 3 – Papa is Back
Papa rolled his D12 and got a 12, so he was back to the homestead with a vengeance. After rolling a random table edge he ended up on the west side, and chooses to line up directly with Tenpas and Corporal Grove.
3a. Family wins Activation
Family: Hooray Papa and Bluepatch are back. They’ll be angry to see what has happened to the family so far. Although I was eager to move them, I thought shooting with Mama was more important, especially since I could move her out of sight afterwards and spare the full fury of the Neotechnoist return fire. So Mama Hanna funneled all her anger at Scatterman and lined up a shot at medium range. She fires and hits for 2, but Scatterman uses the “Lucky” Trait to force a re-roll. The re-roll is even better with 2 hits (but 1 is a Critical, so 3 hits total!) for 7 damage which kills Scatterman! Finally some blood on their side. After this Mama moves out of the window and back into the cabin. Instead of going to the south west (bottom left) corner she heads to the north west (top left) corner, furthest from the door and with a good line of sight at anyone entering the home.
Rexburg: Tenpas heard the roar of the angry Thickskull and quickly spun to see Papa and Bluepatch rustling out of the jungle. Using Speed Reload he quickly pushed new batteries into the Twin Rifle and took aim at Papa Jonas. Tenpas hit 3 times for 6 damage (5 + 1 for Elevation). Due to Papa Jonas’ massive HP pool he didn’t even need to make a Bravery Test for such high damage.
3b. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: My left flank of Tenpas and Corporal Grove would be a good buffer between the raging dinosaur and the main attack on the cabin. I committed to that idea by moving Corporal Grove to the smaller hill below Tenpas and shooting at Papa Jonas. Grove rolled well and hit for 3 damage, which definitely means Papa Jonas is being whittled down.
Family: Time to get Bluepatch into the thick of melee. His impressive 8″ Movement definitely helps! I moved Bluepatch (with Papa Jonas mounted) directly towards Tenpas and Grove, and then I tried to Charge with him into melee. Bluepatch was clearly mad as heck since he rolled a 6 on the D6 Charge distance, which brought him into close combat with BOTH Tenpas and Grove. That’s handy! His fury having run its course, Bluepatch was only able to hit Grove for 2 damage.

3c. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: The appearance of Papa Jonas was inevitable, and I didn’t want it to stall my main advance to the cabin. So Homer didn’t even glance to the left, instead he just blindly Ran forward towards the cabin, reaching the edge of the fence. Captain Toma hesitated a bit more, as I knew the Long Sword would help a lot against the dinosaur. But I could imagine Mama Hanna shooting my Leader to pieces as he marched towards the dinosaur, so instead I kept my eye on the prize of the ol’ cabin. I Ran Captain Toma directly forward and he could reach behind the tree right outside the cabin door. With some good Charge rolling I should be able to reach Sis next turn.
Family: Sis Shiela can hear the heavy footsteps on the porch, and knew that the Neotechnoists were closing in. She took a deep breath and moved back to the window and unloaded on the Captain at short range. Her desperate blaze missed entirely and in fact she even needs to Reload after some extra bad rolling.

Turn 4 – Knock Knock!
4a. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: Getting the first Activation was key since it means I can (hopefully!) get the Captain into melee with Sis Shiela and start avoiding those shots from Mama Hanna. I moved Captain Toma to the cabin door and measured the Charge distance, which was 3″.

I rolled my Charge attempt and made the distance! Captain Toma lunged into the cabin, sped around the corner, and swung his heavy Long Sword at Sis Shiela. I managed to hit 2 times for 6 damage, which was enough pain to cause Shiela to Flee.
Family: Now the bad men really are knockin’ down my door. Mama Hanna saw her daughter embroiled in melee with Captain Toma and was furious. Mama uses her “Get Up!” trait on Sis Shiela to heal +5 HP which brings her daughter back to 9 HP. Then she fires at Captain Toma with her Lever-Action Rifle (still not quite at minimum range) and hits 1 time for 5 damage. Mama Hanna stays where she is in the corner, waiting for more intruders.

4b. Family wins Activation
Family: Time to see what is happening on the outside of the cabin. Papa Jonas was in the middle of close combat with Tenpas and Corporal Grove. I figured that I could empty his gun into one of them and let Bluepatch do the attacking afterwards without bothering to Reload. To that end Papa Jonas uses his “Crippling Shot” trait and also “Fan the Hammer” on his six-shooter. His target is Corporal Grove. I rolled really well and hit 4 times for 6 damage which kills Corporal Grove! Of course I have to mark Papa Jonas with a Reload token since he just fanned his entire cylinder of laser blasts in one go.
Rexburg: After the Captain’s daring charge Homer is lagging behind a bit, but I don’t want to risk lobbing a grenade through the window since it would hit the Captain as well as Sis Shiela. So instead Homer Run’s up the cabin hill with the intention of closing in on Mama Hanna and shutting down her powerful rifle.
4c. Family wins Activation
Family: My last Activation was Sis Shiela, who was Fleeing. This brought up an interesting rules question though, as a direct line backwards from the nearest enemy (Captain Toma) would run her into the cabin wall. She was 2″ from the cabin wall but needed to Flee 4″, and as the rules state for Impossible to Flee: “…or any other situation where Fleeing is impossible…, they are Stunned instead”. So Sis Shiela is Stunned and can’t do anything but move. Of course she doesn’t want to do that an provoke a Snap Attack from the Captain, so she just stays where she is.
Rexburg: Tenpas is in a rough situation. Bluepatch is right in his face and well inside the minimum range of his Twin Rifle. I don’t have a secondary weapon for Tenpas, and as much fun as punching the dinosaur seems I think I’ll move him instead. I move Tenpas out of melee with Bluepatch which means the dinosaur can make a Snap Attack. He does and hits 4 times (2 of which were Criticals!) for 7 damage. Ouch, that was unexpected. Tenpas doesn’t Flee at least, and he is now outside of the minimum range and can shoot normally. With Corporal Grove dead I don’t expect Tenpas to be in the game much longer, so I use “Both Barrels” while I can against Papa Jonas. I hit 2 times (1 was a Critical) for 5 damage which kills Papa Jonas! Now to face down a Thickskull dinosaur alone. Oh and everyone managed to pass their Bravery Tests for having a Leader die. Alas.

Turn 5 – Mess in the Cabin
5a. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: Although Captain Toma is in melee, he also isn’t that great with his Long Sword (8 MMC) compared to just shooting (7 MMC + 1 for In Melee penalty). So I figured he’d sheathe the sword and unload his pistol from the hip. Captain Toma uses “Fan the Hammer” against Sis Shiela and hits 2 times (1 was a Critical) for 5 damage, which makes Sis Shiela Flee again!
Note: I forgot the 2″ Knockback on Fan the Hammer (again!) which would have knocked Shiela out of melee.
Family: Mama Hanna is still eagerly trying to kill the Captain that is hurting her daughter, so she fires again at an 8+ to hit. Her 1 hit was a Critical which totals 6 damage. Captain Toma grits his teeth and doesn’t Flee though.
5b. Family wins Activation
Family: Bluepatch wants to hurt the man who killed his rider and master, so the dinosaur hungrily moves up the hill and back into melee with Tenpas. I didn’t want to risk a Charge at this point so I just settled for flat out moving in to combat. Anyways Bluepatch bit and rammed well and hit 3 times for 4 damage which kills Tenpas. Now only the Captain and Homer remain.
I had to finish my other Activation which was Sis Shiela. She’s again in a rough situation where Fleeing is impossible so she is Stunned again and chooses to stay where she is.
Rexburg: Time to get some grenades going! Homer moves closer to the cabin door and into line of sight with Mama Hanna and chucks a Kaboom Grenade at her. The grenade bounces around inside but fails to hit the intended target. Homer has to Reload the Kaboom Grenades (aka grab another one from his vest), but that should be easily achieved with his Speed Reload Trait next turn.

Turn 6 – Cat and Mouse in the Cabin
6a. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: My first priority is killing Sis Shiela and getting Captain Toma into melee with Mama Hanna. He holsters the drained and empty pistol and draws his Long Sword to swing at Sis Shiela. Captain Toma manages to hit 1 time for 5 damage which finally kills the youngest Macreegin. After this I moved the Captain directly behind the table that separates him from Mama Hanna. Most importantly he is now inside the minimum range of her rifle, so she’ll have to use the less powerful revolver.

Family: Mama Hanna is blind with rage after seeing the crumpled body of her daughter drop to the floor. She draws her 80kW Six-Shooter (too bad it isn’t more wattage so I could Fan the Hammer with it!) and fires at Captain Toma at short range, hitting him 2 times for 2 damage which kills the Captain! The last survivor of the Neotechnoists (Homer) passes his Bravery Test for having a dead Leader.
6b. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: I want to avoid the dinosaur as much as possible, so I move Homer into the cabin. I plop him down behind the table (woo hoo cover) and use Speed Reload to get his Kaboom Grenades ready to throw again. I fail to hit Mama Hanna again though!
Family: With all his enemies taken out of action outside, Bluepatch Runs towards the cabin and the remaining commotion in the house.

Turn 7 – Quick and the Dead
7a. Rexburg wins Activation
Rexburg: Simple turn this time. Homer shoots his Blunderbuss at Mama Hanna at short range and finally hits for 6 damage. Mama Hanna doesn’t Flee though. Then I move Homer to the opposite edge of the cabins table, just inside minimum range for Mama Hanna.
Family: Back to the six-shooter it seems. Mama Hanna fires at Homer with the pistol and hits for 1 damage, but the Cover of the table negates the damage. Bluepatch continues his Run towards the cabin door.

Turn 8 – Behind You!
8a. Family wins Activation
Family: Mama Hanna sees an opportunity to get the drop on her opponent. Homer is busy facing the corner, but she sprints past him and snaps off a shot at his back! Because Mama Hanna is behind Homer she gets the Surprise Hit rules, which means a Critical Hit happens on 10+ instead of 12+. And this is exactly what she needed as her 1 hit was a roll of 10, which totals 2 damage. Unfortunately her other rolls had a 1 in it so she needs to Reload. Outside Bluepatch gets to the door but can’t fit inside. He starts slamming his thick skull against the frame though.
Rexburg: Yelping at the pain in his back Homer spins and unleashes the Blunderbuss on Mama Hanna, but fails to hit.

Turn 9 – Something is Outside…
9a. Family wins Activation
Family: Mama Hanna continued her move away from Homer and is able to get outside the minimum range of her rifle. Just in time too since her pistol is empty! I rolled terribly though and missed with all my attacks. Bluepatch continued his assault of the cabin doorframe, hoping to snap enough timbers to widen an entry.
Rexburg: Jamming another handful of shrapnel into his Blunderbuss, Homer fires the crude weapon at Mama Hanna. The shot blasts through her torso for 6 damage which kills the mother of the Macreegin family.

At this point the game concluded. We hadn’t decided on rules for dinosaurs getting into the cabin, so we weren’t sure if Bluepatch would be able to reach Homer. I think that Homer would likely throw a grenade and it would scare of Bluepatch, since no humans were around to direct the dinosaur. All in all both players decided it was a draw.

After Action Report
Well the game was a draw, but only thanks to the cabin walls keeping Homer safe from Bluepatch. In a straight up fight, at their remaining Hitpoints and armament, I think everyone agreed Bluepatch would probably win. But the safety of the cabin certainly is a factor, as is the fact that the Thickskull dinosaur was on his own and may have been easily frightened away by the grenades.
The Litko tokens I had made were really great and lent a very professional feel to the game. I do have one regret and that was making a set with the text “Move & Acted” on it instead of “Moved & Acted” (both past tense). Minor grammatical error but now that I’m noticed it I can’t unsee it, haha. But yeah the different colors and shapes worked well for easily seeing status on a character, and upgraded the game from the real homebrew feel my old wooden tokens gave.
Anyways a bit from each player:

Rexburg: I think I played that about as well as I could have hoped. Assaulting a dug in, fortified enemy is never easy. Having Papa Jonas and the dinosaur deployed later in the game was both a blessing and a curse. One the one hand I didn’t have to worry about him right away, but also couldn’t start to whittle down the bigger dinosaur Hitpoint pool. Plus he sure deployed a lot closer compared to having to march across the whole field…I mean getting into melee with two of my troops in his first Activation was impressive. Also my mistake for keeping Tenpas and Grove so close together.
Captain Toma was my MVP I think. He survived the march up to the cabin, he tore inside and caused havoc, and generally did exactly what I hoped he would. Homer was a bit of a let down due to constant misses with his grenades and Blunderbuss, but he redeemed himself by killing Mama at the end. And being the only surviving member of the posse, of course.

Family: Well I guess this is my punishment for housing a Neotechnoist soldier who should still be on active duty. I had a rough start with the early loss of Brother Jerrid and Private Verhust, but I think I was able to get some momentum back, and the later game appearance of Papa sure helped. My weapons felt a little futile compared to the Neotechnoist raiders, but then again I had a full posse WITH a dinosaur whereas they just had humans and a bunch of fancy equipment.
Having Sis Shiela stuck in combat like that was a bit frustrating, but I didn’t want to risk a Snap Attack by breaking free. Either way Captain Toma died, but it took a lot more firepower than I would have liked. An enclosed space like that is tough for Fleeing though, but also pretty fun to bust out the old Advanced Heroquest tiles.
When Private Verhust recovers I might have to kick him out of the Macreegin homestead though…

Rule Questions
A couple of questions came up during the game around v1.2 of the rules. Here is a Q/A approach to those issues as well as the changes that have been taken in the upcoming v1.3 to fix or clarify them:
Q: Can Snap Attacks be performed in melee with a ranged weapon?
A: No. The rules have been clarified to say “…any opponent with a melee weapon…”

Q: Can an entity change Facing after winning a melee? If not what Facing should it have?
A: No, an entity must keep their current Facing. The rules don’t explicitly say what to do, but the Facing section does say it can only be changed in the Maneuver Phase and once decided it remains set. So completing a melee (Action Phase) would keep the same Facing until the next Manuever Phase when the entity could change their Facing as desired.

Q: Also on the topic of Facing can an entity that just Activated shoot a way it isn’t Facing and then move, or does it have to move/change Facing first?
A: The entity must use their Manuever Phase to change Facing (and do any movement they like) before shooting, since otherwise the target isn’t in their arc.

Q: Fleeing when inside the cabin where the Fleeing entity only has 2″ of space but needs to move 4″ backward. What happens?
A: This is covered under the “Impossible to Flee” section of the rulebook, which states “…or any other situation where Fleeing is impossible…, they are Stunned instead…”. So the entity would be Stunned if they can’t Flee normally.

Complete Turn Log
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Battle Report: Four Player Madness

Encounter Overview and Posses
Well the four player game yesterday went really well and was tons of fun. I had previously shown the table layout, but it looked even more prehistoric once my friend brought over some extra jungle trees. This was using the v1.2 rules (especially the dinosaur changes) and we played from 8:30pm or so until 10:45pm, mainly thanks to the usual socializing and time spent considering moves.
Everyone chose Posses and we rolled for setup position. The Posses involved were Hope’s Wardens in the top left, The Death Snakes (but with a Terror instead of a King) in the top right by the cabin, Drylands United Cattle Company (but with a Ripper instead of a Runner) in the bottom left (played by me), and Tribe of the Blood Pact in the bottom right. We all setup within 4″ of our deploy location, and the locations were evenly spaced from each other.

The two objectives were a Laser Tower (middle left) with 5A-1D and a max range of 19″, and a Cannon (middle right) with 1A-5D 2″ Explosion and a min range of 4″ and max range of 14″. Whoever had the most characters (dinosaurs didn’t count) within 6″ of either weapon could fire it as their Action Phase. Multiple people could fire it, and if the number of characters was tied both teams could fire it. The Cannon ended up getting a ton of use (but not a ton of hits…) whereas the left side mostly had better equipped characters shooting at each other. Also whoever “captured” more objectives would technically win the game by the end. Really though the weapons were placed to try to stop people from hunkering down and avoiding combat.

Skirmish Pictures
Here are a slew of pictures from the game!:

General Recap
Anyways the Drylands Posse split their forces with their dinosaur and Dallas going left, and Quidel and Trista going right. Hope’s Warden kept Glowstar with his Autoshotgun mounted on their Ducky dinosaur and they flanked to meet Drylands dinosaur, while the other members edged towards the gun. The Death Snakes held back their sniper Ice and sent everyone else forward, tending to shoot the Cannon more than their actual guns. Their dinosaur got into melee combat early on with Tribe of the Blood Pact. Speaking of the Tribe of the Blood Pact posse they focused mostly on the Death Snakes, except for sending their Pike armed Illit’taex member left to meet up with the Spear armed Quidel in a fight to the death.
Eventually the Hope’s Wardens player had to head home a bit early (after killing the Drylands dinosaur and losing one of their own number). So we just removed their forces. Then the game became more of a “pick on Tribe of the Blood Pact’s freaking brutal Armored dinosaur”. Basically just pouring fire from Ice and Trista into the Armored dinosaur until it dropped dead.
After Tribe of the Blood Pact was eliminated we called the game. Quidel for Drylands was technically the closest to the turret, but The Death Snakes might have had Drylands if the fight went on. They hadn’t been hurt at all (besides losing their dinosaur) and were in pretty good shape still. Trista and Dallas for Drylands were fine, but Quidel was down to 2 HP so it likely would have ended as a 3vs2 fight, and perhaps eventual victory for The Death Snakes.

The game was lots of fun and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. The rotating activation still worked well with 4 players, as did the bonus +4 HP (+2 HP per player beyond two) since it meant characters could actually reach combat and fight a bit.

The Question of the “Armored” Dinosaur
So as with the last battle using the Armored dinosaur, the feeling came up of “Is 4 AR too powerful?”. There were two characters in the whole match with RMC 6, and even then it was base 10+ to hit. Throw on In Melee and Moved penalties and you’re needing 12s to hit. On top of that the Armored dinosaur was the Feral Breed so his HP was at +2, with an additional +4 for the four player game. But even with all of that the dinosaur wasn’t smashingly effective. Sure the 3A-3D attack hurt a bit and it locked down a few people in melee, but not any more so than the Terror (or even the Ducky).
As it stands (with v1.2) the Armored statistics have been nerfed and look like:

Armored (Large Herbivore): MV 3, PMV D4, AR 4, MMC 7, DIS 5, HP 22, 3A-3D, $500

I want to avoid the Armored being the best and only choice for the $500 dinosaurs, and at the same time I don’t want to nerf it so badly that no one will ever use it. As a ponderously slow tank it is terrific, since it draws (and survives) a lot of fire, slowly wanders around the field, and generally just distracts the enemy from the rest of your team.
But at the same time it’s a bit…dull to fight against? Missing with most of your shots is terribly annoying and frustrating, and moods rapidly change from “Wow he’s a tough one!” to “Ugh won’t he just die already?”.
If I drop the DIS from 5 to 4 the dinosaur is basically stuck going D4″ an Activation because it will be fairly easy to Panic. I could raise the price slightly, especially when you consider an AR 4 suit for humans is $500 on it’s own. I might end up doing that, and also creating or changing a carnivore dinosaur to be in the $600 range as well.

Anyways that was the only real question to come out of the game. That and trying to indicate special abilities of a weapon somewhere on the Posse roster. I might just put a star (*) beside weapons that do something cool, and then that will hint to players to check the rulebook for what feature it has. I had thought about adding a “Special Ability” column to the weapon statline, but there really isn’t space (plus I don’t want to touch the sheet after this much time).

Battle Report: Across the Street

Encounter Overview
Well this battle report took a while to get written up. The game took place back near the end of December, but I was tired of formatting these and hassling with the pictures so I let them sit for a while. Anyways it’s here now! The match was quite a bit of fun because of how much the central road changed the flow of combat.

I stuck to the smaller table, this time using a 3 foot square of terrain with 5″ deployment zones in the wilderness opposite the central road. I put up some blocking terrain near the middle to help give a “trench” feel of one posse having to charge out of cover and across the big gap.
The deadly posses involved were The Sunset Riders, which used a dedicated mounted member on a super fast Plains Runner (MV 12). The other posse were The Death Snakes, a smaller but extensively equipped posse with a deadly assassin leader. Who would win?

Note on images, all of them are clickable and will open the image at the full size. Apologies for any blurriness, my old camera is still having some issues.

Posse: The Death Snakes: 1/100 IP, 0/1000 ND, 2/3 Traits (not sure what happened there!)
My goal for the posse was to have a team of hard hitting, vicious combatants who could fight on their own. No weak links here. The Neotechnoist Leader named Ice (reminiscing of the TV show Gladiators) exemplified this with good AR and HP, deadly RMC, and a terrific 400kW Lever-Action rifle for sniping. I gave him the Knee Shot trait since enemies will undoubtedly move, and the +3 Damage from it would mean at least 8 damage if the rifle hit, and upwards of 10 before factoring in criticals. That’s good news for single shotting some basic enemies. Next up was Kallas who used a Double Barrel Shotgun and the Speed Reload trait to hopefully fire Both Barrels in a row with deadly effect. He’d be a bit shorter range, but again AR 1 and HP 12 should see him across the street. Jordana was next (you can thank the TV show Chuck for that one, since it had Jordana Brewster on it for a bit). I gave her a heavy 300kW Six-Shooter, which does a respectable 4A-3D and would be deadly if she used Fan the Hammer. Similar stats for her as Kallas, since I had IP to spare with only 3 humans. My dinosaur choice was made simply because I hadn’t tried the Allosaurus out in combat yet, and it’s such a dynamic toy that I wanted to give it a shot. So I made a Plains King Dinosaur named Klahr, who continued the “deadly weapon” idea with his 1A-7D Bite.
For strategy I imagined Kallas riding Klahr to bring his shotgun into combat faster. Jordana would head up the center, and Ice would snipe from the side. I didn’t expect Jordana to hold the entire enemy force by herself, but if I could focus fire all my attacks on a single target I had lots of confidence I would make one enemy drop per turn.

Ice (Neotechnoist Leader)
MV 4, AR 1, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 7, HP 10, Knee Shot I. 400kW Lever-Action Rifle.

Kallas (Duster)
MV 3, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 12, Speed Reload. Double Barrel Shotgun, Whiskey Drop.

Jordana (Duster)
MV 3, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 5, HP 12. 300kW Six-Shooter, Whiskey Drop.

Klahr (Plains King Dinosaur)
MV 6, PMV D6, AR 2, MMC 6, DIS 7, HP 24.

Posse: The Sunset Riders: 1/100 IP, 0/1000 ND, 3/3 Traits
The focus of my posse was a lightning fast dinosaur with a deadly close combat rider, then a basic sniper leader and two cheap members that would form a simple firebase. First up was “Old Jim”, my Neotechnoist Leader who uses a deadly 400kW Lever-Action rifle. I also gave him the Rapid Fire trait to help make sure that 4D from the rifle lands on target. With an RMC of 6 he’d basically hang to one side and shoot at enemies crossing the road. Next up was my dinosaur and rider, named Limefly (after an old fast Battletech mech) and The Man in Black respectively. I tried a new approach of reducing the rider’s Movement to 1, which gave me some bonus IP to play with but would also mean he’d never dismount the dinosaur. Let’s just hope the ride never gets shot out from under him! I beefed up his HP and gave him a Motor Blade which is a nice versatile close combat weapon. His goal would be to hang on the flank opposite Old Jim and counter charge anyone coming across the road. Then came the twins, who were cheap members with cheap 100kW Six-Shooters. They’d bulk up the center and either defensively hold ground or advance across the road, depending on how the enemies looked. I used ancient Warhammer 40,000 Sisters of Battle figures for them, and then had tons of trouble remembering who was who once the bullets starting flying, haha.

Old Jim (Neotechnoist Leader)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 7, HP 8, Rapid Fire I. 400kW Lever-Action Rifle, Small IRP.

The Man in Black (Duster)
MV 1, AR 1, RMC 8, MMC 6, BRV 6, HP 13, Bonus HP I. Motor Blade.

Cardella (Bandit)
MV 4, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 10. 100kW Six-Shooter

Kina (Bandit)
MV 4, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 5, HP 10. 100kW Six-Shooter

Limefly (Plains Runner Dinosaur)
MV 12, PMV D10, AR 0, MMC 9, DIS 4, HP 10, Bonus MV I.

For the roll off to decide table edges The Sunset Riders got the right side (west) and The Death Snakes got the left side (east). The Death Snakes had to setup first. As mentioned the deployment zone was 5″ from each table edge. There was no objective for the game, since the street would inspire enough strategy without artificial goals.

Death: My setup didn’t have a lot of depth or trickery to it, so I wasn’t worried about going first. As planned I put Jordana right in the middle behind the tall, line of sight blocking hill. She’d either advance with Klahr or summit the hill and provide covering fire. Speaking of Klahr I put Kallas on his back and the two of them were slightly north of Jordana, just beside the tall hill. They would be my spearhead, and what better weapon to break the enemy lines than a shotgun? Heck if it’s savage enough to make World War 1 Germans protest about it, it’s probably still fine for rushing an enemy position. Finally Ice hung out on the right side, just to provide some support for that flank in case The Sunset Riders aimed that way. His long range would mean basically full coverage of the street.

Sunset: Seeing a fresh, unhurt and unhurried force arrayed before me is always intimidating. Luckily I outnumbered The Death Snakes, but they sure sounded better equipped. First of all I placed Old Jim, and I decided to put him to the north (my right flank), since I honestly didn’t want to get into a shooting match with Ice (he had better AR and HP). Plus I could start laying down a withering hail of fire against Klahr, since I figured the dinosaur would be quick to advance. Unlike my little Limefly he couldn’t hide behind any hill on the board, so I imagine he’d be deep into the road in no time. Anyways then the twins were put in front of the thin, tall hill slightly back from the main hill adjacent to the road. Sorry for the poor description, but I thought it was necessary since the pictures don’t have much context. I put the Man in Black and Limefly behind that same thin hill, since I wanted to hop him cover to cover and then hopefully charge a flank or counter charge Klahr.

Turn 1 – Snipers and Streets
1a. Death wins Activation
Death: I wanted to get my simple, no brainer moves out of the way and save Ice until the end to react to the enemy if necessary. So I just bumped Jordana 3″ forward to the base of the stepping hill in front of her. She was still blocked from line of sight, but I could move her up soon if necessary.
Sunset: I matched The Death Snakes opening move by pushing Kina forward to the base of my own tall hill that was adjacent to the road. Looks like they might get into a shooting match soon, but I was outmatched by two hundred kilowatts of six-shooter firepower.
1b. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: Cardella mirrored Kina’s move and placed herself at the base of the same hill. Two 100kW Six-Shooters against Jordana’s single 300kW revolver should be interesting.
Death: Time to move in the spearhead forward! Kallas spurred his mount Klahr forward behind the tall hill. It provided some cover from the middle of The Sunset Rider’s forces, but Old Jim had a pretty clear shot (unfortunately). Not much I can do to prevent that with such a massive dinosaur.
1c. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: I have two Activations left since I outnumbered the enemy 2:1. First of all I had the Man in Black move Limefly 12″ forward to the cover of the second large hill, right beside the twins. He was in a perfect position to charge Klahr if needed. Then I had Old Jim duck into cover and fire at 10+ at Klahr. His 3A weapon paid off and I hit with 1 critical for 6 damage. Not bad for a ranging shot!
Death: Unlike Old Jim and his cowardly, hiding posse, I didn’t have range to anyone with Ice. I moved him forward and behind a tree on his same hill, hoping to close the gap a bit.

Turn 2 – Snipers and Shuffling
2a. Death wins Activation
Death: First of all I continued my slow advance with Jordana. She stepped up the slope leading to the tall hill, but didn’t summit yet as that would require a Run. I didn’t want to Run her into the open and not get a shot off. Instead I figured she’d safely wait in cover and move and shoot next turn.
Sunset: I was a bit worried that Cardella would be outranged by Ice if the flank came to a shootout, so I moved her to the right to add some extra cover between the two.
2b. Death wins Activation
Death: Klahr was shot already, so I wanted to get him across the road as soon as possible. No more skulking behind cover. I Ran him directly forward, with only a crater and some open turf between him and a tasty meal of Cardella.
Sunset: I wanted to keep Old Jim firing at Klahr. I moved him to the right up a slight hill, which afforded a tiny scrap of cover, but more importantly put Klahr into medium range. I shot and again got 1 critical hit for 6 more damage. Still not enough to Panic Klahr, but hey, he’s down to half HP already!
2c. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: I had a tough choice to make in terms of what Limefly would do. He could try to hold off Klahr in close combat, or try to swing around and reach Ice in close combat. I decided the twins and Old Jim’s firepower could handle Klahr, so I moved Limefly to the left so that he was behind cover at the southern tip of the hill. Next turn he will be able to Run a massive 12+6″ and reach Ice in melee! I finished my turn by moving Kina to the base of the tall hill, since she had to climb up the stepping stone along the way. I was at medium range of Klahr, so I snapped off a shot. Another lucky roll with 1 critical for 3 measly damage.
Death: Klahr was getting pounded, but hopefully could survive another turn and reach the relative safety of melee. Plus Kallas was safe so far, and certainly wouldn’t have survived the trip across the street, so Klahr is serving his purpose. Anyways with Ice I could just barely see Limefly’s head peaking out from behind the hill. The dinosaur was small, but not THAT small. Ice only needed 8+ to hit (so nice when the target doesn’t have Armor), so I decided to activate Knee Shot to hopefully pour on some more damage. I hit with 1 critical for a total of 9 damage, which put Limefly down to 1 HP and caused him to Panic (slowing his massive 12″ Movement to D10!). If only I had hit with just one more attack I could have killed the dinosaur and effectively stranded The Man in Black. As it stands I don’t think the pair will be effective in rushing Ice anytime soon.

Turn 3 – Fangs and Terror
3a. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: Phew I lucked out winning Activation, since it meant I could have Limefly dive for cover before Ice got another shot off. I rolled for Limefly’s PMV and got a 2! So he basically went from 12″ MV to 2″ :( Anyways I shuffled him around until I was sure Ice couldn’t see him, or move to see him. The Panic was cleared after this, but I didn’t know what to do with the gravely wounded dinosaur now.
Death: With the cowardly Limefly burrowing even further behind the hill I left Ice for now and focused on getting Klahr into melee before he had to weather another round of fire. I moved him directly forward towards Cardella, then rolled to Charge the 3″ to reach her. I rolled enough movement and could reach Cardella, and Klahr viciously went to work on her, hitting with his 1 attack for 8 damage. Cardella passed her Bravery test, goodness knows how!
3b. Death wins Activation
Death: It was time for Jordana to stop hiding and start contributing. She moved into the open on top of the tall hill and fired at 9+ at Kina. The kick from her gun must have been too much as not a single shot hit!
Sunset: Kina couldn’t handle Jordana (and maybe Ice, depending on how he moved) alone, so she ducked back down the hill to the stepping stone. This put her into a Crossfire with Klahr, who was also at short range. She grabbed her revolver and held the trigger and Fanned the Hammer, which gave her a total of 6+2 attacks (thanks Crossfire!) at 9+. She only hit 3 times for a total of 4 damage. The upside is it knocked Khalr 2″ backwards (well, sideways), although he was still in melee with Cardella. Kina will need to Reload though since Fan the Hammer empties the gun (plus I rolled a 1, so it was worth Fanning the Hammer!).
3c. Death wins Activation
Death: Hmm if Klahr can hold out a bit longer he should be able to gobble up Cardella and then lock down Old Jim. I’d love to get Ice in to support, but was waffling on compromising his position or over-extending. As much as I hated to do it, I left Ice where he was, out of range.
Sunset: With Ice far out of range and Jordana blocked from the main fighting by a lot of terrain, I was in a pretty good position to continue my focus fire on Klahr. Cardella was part of the Crossfire against Klahr, and she didn’t have long to live. I decided to Fan the Hammer with her as well. She hit 3 times (2 of which were criticals!) for a total of 6 damage. More importantly the ability has Knockback 2″, so Klahr got pushed out of melee with her! I mean, I guess he could re-Charge next turn, but at least it removes the Melee penalty for Old Jim. Speaking of which the leader moved into a fresh Crossfire position with Klahr, at medium range. I decided to use Rapid Fire for a total of 7 Attacks. And then…I missed with all of them! I could have put down the dinosaur, but Old Jim had a bad case of the shakes or something!

Turn 4 – Titans and Reloads
4a. Death wins Activation
Death: I knew Klahr didn’t have much time left, so I handled him first. Instead of Charging I took a longer move route into combat with Cardella to get out of the numerous Crossfires. Then of course I had to miss with his attack on Cardella. At least it was just 1 Attack compared to Old Jim’s 7 that he missed, haha.
Sunset: Old Jim continued to pour fire into Klahr. He wasn’t in a Crossfire this time, but he still hit twice for 6 damage. Getting close to bringing down the dinosaur now.
4b. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: I wanted to save Limefly as my trump card, so I got a few housekeeping issues out of the way with this activation. Namely Reloading with Kina, who stayed where she was.
Death: Seeing the swirling melee and mess of laser blasts Jordana Ran down her hill to close the gap, and be a bit less exposed to future return fire.
4c. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: I had Cardella Reload, yep yep. Then The Man in Black swung Limefly into Klahr’s flank (man oh man 12″ is a long distance and really allows some surprises as opponents often underestimate the reach). Swinging his Motor Blade the rider hit 3 times (2 of which were criticals!) for a big 8 damage, which kills Klahr!
Death: Well that was bound to happen eventually, so I can’t say I’m surprised. In fact I was really impressed with Klahr’s survivability in general. After the first two critical hits when he crossed the street I was nervous, but he really soaked up those Crossfires and still got a hit in there. Plus Kallas is alive and well and at optimum shotgun range! Anyways I moved Ice to the edge of the hill, since he was starting to get a bit of a denied flank going on. Plus with Limefly moved over there wasn’t much that could hurt Ice (yet!).

Turn 5 – Shotguns and Fear
5a. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: Well with Klahr dead I had a new problem: Kallas! There’d be two barrels of hot plasma blasting all over the place pretty soon. Cardella was in melee with him, just because of where he dismounted, so she fired first. Bad rolling though, as I missed with everything and rolled a 1, so she’d have to Reload!
Death: I didn’t expect Kallas to last long that close to so many enemy troops, so he got busy killin’. I used Both Barrels at medium range against Old Jim, rolling 4 Attacks. Kallas hit with 3 (2 of which were criticals) for a massive 10 damage, which killed Old Jim outright! Now that’s an entrance. The Man in Black and Kina both Flee as a result of their Leader being killed.
5b. Death wins Activation
Death: Jordana continued to march across the street, firing as she went. She shot at medium range at 10+, trying to hit Cardella for the kill. Luck was with Jordana as she got 2 hits (1 of which was a critical) for 6 damage, which kills Cardella!
Sunset: Well, that was a terrible turn of events. Cardella was bound to die, but to have Old Jim EXPLODE to unexpectedly definitely hurt. Anyways Limefly had to Flee since his rider was a mess, so he headed very far from anything important. I wanted to keep him in cover at least, so I Ran him behind a large hill in the hopes of surviving another turn.
5c. Death wins Activation
Death: Unlike Old Jim, Ice was still alive, but he certainly wasn’t doing much. What started as not wanting to over-extend has now become a definite lack of shooting from him. To this end I Ran him towards the combat, trying to get into range for a few deadly potshots.
Sunset: Kina had to Flee after seeing Old Jim die, so she headed away from Kallas up a large hill. I fired at medium range at Kallas, his shotgun still smoking, but only hit once on 8+ for 2 damage.

Turn 6 – Firing and Revenge
6a. Death wins Activation
Death: Well it’s time to use Kallas’ trick. He activated Speed Reload to bring his Double Barrel Shotgun back online, then moved over to sight in on Limefly. The shot was at long range but he only needed an 8+ on 4 Attacks to kill. Kallas missed them all! I was really hoping for a double kill with him.
Sunset: Kina backed down the hill to get out of line of sight from Jordana and Ice, then fired at medium range against Kallas, hitting 2 times for 3 damage. I miss the bonuses of Crossfire and Fan the Hammer, haha.
6b. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: After barely surviving Kallas’ attack The Man in Black wanted to put an end to the deadly shotgun threat. He swung Limefly around and moved into melee with Kallas, hitting 3 times (1 was a critical) for 7 damage, which kills Kallas! Revenge, woo hoo.
Death: That was abrupt…perhaps not quite as abrupt as Old Jim, but still I expected at least another turn from Kallas. Anyways Jordana edged around the nearest crater and fired long range at Limefly. She missed with two 1s (haha). Ice was nearby so he used Yeehaw! to allow a single re-roll, which turned into a critical for a total of 5 damage against Limefly! The dinosaur crumpled to the ground. Jordana would still need to Reload due to her other bad roll of 1. Finally Ice could shoot (for once!) at close to his maximum range (21″ in this case) at 9+ against the now unmounted Man in Black, hitting once for 5 damage.

Turn 7 – Cat and Mouse
7a. Sunset wins Activation
Sunset: With most of the big movers and shakers dead the game would tend towards cleanup at this point. The Man in Black was slow as heck now that he was dismounted, but still feebly Ran 2″ towards the nearest hill.
Death: Ice advanced his full 4″ and gets Man in Black in his sights, shooting at long range at 9+. He missed all his shots, which was just delaying the kill on his incredibly slow opponent.
7b. Death wins Activation
Death: Jordana also moved forward which put the Man in Black in long range for her pistol. She outdid Ice in her shooting though, hitting 2 times (1 was a critical) for 5 damage, which had been reduced a bit because the Man in Black was in a scrap of cover.
Sunset: Kina spun around the edge of the cliff to shoot short range at Jordana. I didn’t want to have her needing to reload from using Fan the Hammer, so I stuck with a normal attack. It didn’t matter anyways as I missed with everything.

Turn 8 – Cleanup and Kills
8a. Death wins Activation
Death: Ice continued his barrage against the Man in Black, again at long range. He had better luck this time with 2 hits (1 of which was a critical) for a total of 7 damage, which kills Man in Black. Only Kina remains!
Sunset: Well there isn’t much left of my shattered posse. Kina and her trusty 100kw Six-Shooter might not do much, but hopefully they can at least kill Jordana. I fired at short range against Jordana, hitting once for 2 damage. After this Kina moved up the tall hill into the cover of the tree, since a commanding position might help a bit.
Death: Jordana spun and fired at short range against Kina, hitting 2 times for 4 damage as the vegetation absorbed some of the shot. Jordana moved to the bottom of the hill but didn’t have enough Movement to reach the top…yet.

Turn 9 – Not Over Yet
9a. Death wins Activation
Death: Calmly Ice lifted his rifle to kill Kina, needing only a 7+ to hit. Maybe the wind changed, or maybe a solar flare interfered with his vision, but he missed with everything! Looks like this is going to overtime, haha. Next Jordana Ran up the tall hill to be face to face with Kina, although not quite in melee combat.
Sunset: Intent on showing the cocky Jordana what happened to the last person at short range, Kina Fanned the Hammer for 4 hits (1 of which was a critical) for 6 damage, which causes Jordana to Flee! Kina moved back down the hill to deny Ice his shot.
NOTE: I forgot about the 2″ Knockback with Fan the Hammer, which would have sent Jordana sailing off the cliff

This is a textbook case of old vs new paintjob. I must have been 16 when I painted Kina (left) whereas I just painted Jordana (right).

Turn 10 – Stunning and Surviving
10a. Death wins Activation
Death: Jordana is Fleeing, but is technically too slow to Flee backwards down the tall hill. The hill is 2″ high so she’d need MV 4, but she only has 3. So instead she is Stunned! She decides to just stay where she is. Kina had ducked behind the hill so Ice no longer had a shot. He Ran forward to try to get into line of sight.
Sunset: Kina is a real trooper, and I wish with all my heart she had Old Jim’s 400kW rifle instead of her measly pistol! Anyways she needs to Reload, but instead of doing that Kina moves up the tall hill into melee with Jordana! She uses the Natural Weapon “Push”, which hits for 1 damage, and ALSO applies a 2″ Knockback that sends Jordana off the cliff! She takes a further 2 damage from the fall and is down to 1 HP. The downside is Kina is all alone in Ice’s line of sight now.

Turn 11 – Gotcha!
11a. Sunset wins Activation (with a roll of 11 to 1!)
Sunset: Winning Activation is great since it means I can (hopefully) get into cover. I moved Kina back down the hill and Reloaded her revolver.
Death: I moved Jordana forward to the base of the hill and had her take her Whiskey Drop, which recovered 2 HP so she’s at 3 HP. Ice moves around the hill into line of sight with Kina…no hiding from the inevitable! He fires and hits 2 times for 6 damage, which finally kills Kina!

After Action Report
Death: Pulled out a victory! That was such a tense back and forth battle. When Klahr died I’ll admit I had my doubts, but then Kallas swung it back by killing Old Jim, and subsequently dying soon after in melee with Limefly, but then his killer died, and so on. Definitely could have gone either way at a lot of points. During the game I felt that I didn’t use Ice nearly enough. I was too nervous to move him closer, but as soon as Old Jim was dead I could have been owning the long distances. Instead I had to spend (waste!) turns running him forward. Otherwise everything worked okay. Klahr did well in bringing Kallas into combat, and doing a bit of damage to boot. It’s always a toss up between being the aggressor and just playing defensive. I did take more fire than I would have just sitting in my “hill bunker” as The Sunset Riders did, but at the same time I got to dictate the flow of the game whereas my opponent just had to react to my moves. Anyways all in all I felt the Posse did a solid job, and the high cost weapons paid off very well. I can only imagine what would have happened if Kina didn’t have a cheap knockaround gun but a REAL weapon.

Sunset: Ugh how could I forget the 2″ Knockback on Kina’s Fan the Hammer against Jordana near the end there?! Not saying that was my biggest mistake, but it certainly is the freshest. I think wimping out with Limefly hurt me. He did okay in the backlines once Klahr arrived, but that was more due to The Death Snakes inability to kill Limefly than my own tactical genius. If I had committed him earlier I might have slowed Klahr before he (and Kallas!) really reached my lines. I guess I can’t be too much to blame since he Fled after taking a shot from Ice, so I had to react to that. Anyways everyone did okay. I would have liked Old Jim to survive longer, but who could have foreseen that much damage at once? I’m waffling on whether the twins were a worthwhile investment, since their 100kW Six-Shooters were hitting reliably (and Fan the Hammer + Crossfire rocked!) but they didn’t do a ton of damage, and certainly seemed like an easy “threat” to ignore.

Complete Turn Log
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Fan Battle Report: Keep to the Left

I have a terrific fan battle report here from Ross on the Post Apocalyptic Wargames Forum. He has a ton of awesome ruined terrain which I showed a bit of before. Anyways on to his writeup and pictures of “Keep to the Left”:

The Claynation Syndicate (me) – Jefferson, Eustas, Toppy, Megs, in front of Fluffy

Lords of the Wasteland (her) – George, Frances, Buckley, Don, in front of Spot

The Lords of the Wasteland call out to the Claynation Syndicate, telling them to get off the road.

The Syndicate’s response is in the negative and contained words not repeatable here.

The Syndicate march forward menacingly.

The Lords break formation and approach, Spot rushes towards Fluffy intent on a big meal!

Spot charges in taking a big chunk from Fluffy. From cover of ruined and rusted cars Megs unloads his shotgun critically hitting the T-Rex for 15pts of damage.
George shoots at long range and misses while Frances criticaly hits Toppy for a whole 2pts of damage!
Fluffy bumps Spot for 6pts of damage.

Fluffy and Spot score wounds on each other while Megs unloads his shotgun into Spot, again criticaly hitting it, this time finishing it off!!
Frances barely scratches Fluffy while Eustas steps forward Fanning the Hammer killing Frances. Beside him Jefferson Fans the Hammer at Don only clipping him for minimum damage. Toppy makes the trio of Syndicate men but only fires normaly at Don, clipping him once and jamming his weapon in the process.
The leader of the Lords steps in with murderous intentions Fanning the Hammer critically hitting and killing Toppy.

Buckley shoots at Fluffy at long range but can’t get past the wounded dino’s armour.
Megs pegs George for 10pts of damage causing him to break while Don Fans the Hammer at Eustas missing. The others hop from foot to foot busily reloading.

Fluffy charges Buckley, Buckley receives 6pts of damage from the Onslaught.
Smuggly, Megs walks upto Don, and from point blank range… misses! Calmly standing there amid the hail of bullets, Don Fans the Hammer at Megs blowing him away. Jefferson walks forward Fanning the Hammer shooting George in the back taking him out.
Eustas wildliy Fans the Hammer at Don for a small amount of damage.

Buckley fires at Fluffy but just jams his gun as Fluffy bounds forward again to minimumly wound Buckley.
The other all hastily reload their weapons.

Jefferson activates first, shooting and killing Don.
In an act of defiance, Buckley punches Fluffy in the nose critically hitting for 2pts of damage.
Stunned by the hit on the nose Fluffy manages to miss with his attackes.
From the side, Eustas picks off Buckley finishing the fight.

Many thanks to Ross for trying the game out. He had two questions afterwards that I thought I’d re-post here:

Q: With the Move RMC penaltity, does the model count as having moved if its movement was the last round or the current round?
A: The Move RMC penalty should only apply in the CURRENT turn. The idea was it forces a person to choose their Activations wisely, since you can “get the drop” on a tough target and Activate before it moves and have an easier time hitting it.

Q: Charging, is the charge range 1d6″ or Movement + 1d6″?
A: For Charging you can perform a normal Move in your Movement Phase, then the Charge itself in the Action Phase. The Charge is just D6″, so you were playing it correctly. Remember you can only Charge from 2-6″ away, so it’s meant to be a gamble and tradeoff of risking not reaching combat or getting the bonus Attack.

Battle Report: Fight for the Cannon

Encounter Overview
I had a ton of fun playing this game because of the smaller table and central objective. I used a 35″ by 35″ section of my table with a 5″ deployment zone, so there wasn’t a “long” side like when I play 4x3ft. This made melee deadlier and also meant everyone could get stuck in early on. To add to the chaos I put a Cannon in the middle of the table as an objective. This report used v1.1 of the rules, so it was all the latest and greatest.
The two posses involved were Hope’s Wardens and Tribe of the Blood Pact. I originally created them for the v0.91 rules, so you can see some of the thought behind the posses in an earlier post. Both posses ended up with 3 members and 1 dinosaur even after the update to v1.1, and mostly just had better equipment with some of the extra money from recruiting the first Member for free.

Note on images, all of them are clickable and will open the image at the full 1280×960 size. Apologies for any blurriness, I think my old camera is having issues focusing.

The Cannon
The smallest objective and totally change the feel of a game session, and adding a Cannon into the middle of the map certainly proved this. The little metal Cannon figure is actually from San Juan off Puerto Rico, and I bought it at an old Spanish fort down there on my cruise holiday. Dinosaur Cowboys is always on my mind and it was the perfect size for the game, so I’m happy with how it looked in this game.
Bit of a tangent here, but plain “capture the flag” objectives can be tough in skirmish games. For one thing you don’t have a lot of troops to throw at the objective, and certainly can’t hope to spread thin and cover multiple objectives. And with a single objective and no turn limit the question comes up of “Why even go for the objective?” since it might be easier to hold back and kill the enemy.
To alleviate this concern I think that objectives should do something beneficial. In Guild Wars MMORPG capturing the flag gives you a +10% boost to stats, for example, so that’s a huge motivation to go for it.
In this game the Cannon could actually be controlled and fired if a human was close to it. Basically whoever had the most humans (dinosaurs don’t count) within 4″ of the Cannon could spend the Action Phase of any of those humans (max of 1 per Turn) to fire the Cannon. It has similar stats to a Field Gun, except the damage is less crazy since these were fresh Posses.

The Cannon: 1A-5D 2″ Explosion, range 1-6/7-15/16-21, no Reload

Posse: Hope’s Wardens: 3/110 IP, 10/1000 ND, 3/3 Traits
My posse representing a high tech Neotechnoist party that is new to the world outside The Wall. They were well equipped and had plenty of Armor to compensate for their low HP. Generally good shooting scores would help. The one limiting factor was range, as the furthest weapon as Limeskull with 16″ max on his Light Repeater. I figured Nedevan and Red Dove would advance together, then dismount and try to cause disarray by getting into melee with separate targets. Limeskull’s purpose was to grab cover up high (for the elevation bonus) and fire forever. Glowstar would be midrange support, probably moving a step or two behind Red Dove.

Limeskull (Neotechnoist Leader)
MV 5, AR 2, RMC 7, MMC 8, BRV 7, HP 10. Light Repeater, Padded Armor.

Red Dove (Bandit)
MV 4, AR 1, RMC 7, MMC 7, BRV 6, HP 9, Whirlwind. 100kW Six-Shooter, Motor Blade.

Glowstar (Neotechnoist)
MV 4, AR 2, RMC 6, MMC 8, BRV 6, HP 8, Neck Shot. Auto Shotgun, Padded Armor.

Nedevan (Trained Ducky Dinosaur)
MV 6, PMV D6, AR 0, MMC 7, DIS 4, HP 18, Bonus HP I.

Posse: Tribe of the Blood Pact: 0/110 IP, 0/1000 ND, 3/3 Traits
The idea of this posse was to get into melee and make things ugly for the enemy. Everyone had high Movement and a ton of Hitpoints which would facilitate them living long enough to reach close combat. The inexpensive melee weapons and low cost ranged options meant I could go for a higher priced Armored dinosaur, which is ridiculously terrific at low IP since it’s AR 4 is very tough for people to hit. Having a ton of HP meant The Crimson Terror could soak up a bunch of damage too. I figured he’d remain unmounted, although if anyone was going to ride the dinosaur it would be Sendar as she had the lowest MV. Otherwise the posse would stick together and advance using as much cover as possible, and most likely sacrifice shooting to Run each turn.

Bloodscar (Savage Leader)
MV 6, AR 2, RMC 9, MMC 7, BRV 7, HP 13, Retreat! I. Pickaxe, 100kW Six-Shooter, Quilted Armor.

Illit'taex (Savage)
MV 5, AR 1, RMC 9, MMC 7, BRV 5, HP 13, Bonus HP I. Pike, 80kW Six-Shooter.

Sendar (Duster)
MV 4, AR 0, RMC 8, MMC 7, BRV 6, HP 12. Staff, 80kW Six-Shooter, Small IRP.

The Crimson Terror (Feral Armored Dinosaur)
MV 4, PMV D4, AR 4, MMC 7, DIS 4, HP 28, Runner.

In the roll off for table edge Hope’s Wardens got the west side (towards the kitchen) and Tribe of the Blood Pact got the east side. Hope’s Wardens had to setup first. Each posse could deploy up to 5″ from their respective table edge.

Hope: Setting up first is always rough as you don’t get to see what the enemy is planning. Looking at the terrain I tried to anticipate how Blood would deploy. I knew the tall terrain near the south would be tempting, so I positioned Limeskull opposite it near the high hill with a tree. This would give him a bit of cover but more importantly force melee combatants to waste Movement trying to climb the hill. It also left me at long range of the central Cannon, so I could provide supporting fire. Let’s just hope Blood doesn’t go for a denied flank and deploy way in the north out of my range.
I mounted Glowstar and Red Dove on Nedevan and plopped him in the middle. The fast MV 6 (9″ effective Run) would put him very close to the Cannon early on, so I could hopefully dominate any incoming groups.

Blood: I had a bunch of deadly warriors at my disposable, and enough terrain that I figured most of them could reach the combat alive. I knew they’d be faster on foot so I left The Crimson Terror unmounted and put him in the northern corner behind a hill. Even with the Runner trait he was ponderously slow (7″ effective Run), but he had a ton of HP and super high Armor so I hoped to hold the middle with him until the rest of my melee group could work their way through cover. Advancing directly across the open would mean his slow speed would balance with the faster humans who would be dodging hill to hill.
I put all my human members in a clump in the south. No one could get to the Cannon in the first Turn so I was safe keeping them clustered. I planned to flank one of them (probably Illit’taex) towards Limeskull on the hill. Bloodscar and Sendar would approach the middle and hopefully control the Cannon to bombard anything left alive, or at least contest it from Glowstar and Red Dove enough to prevent them firing.

Turn 1 – To the Cannon!
1a. Blood wins Activation
Blood: Since two of Hope’s members were mounted they technically only had 2 entities to Activate, so I outnumbered them 2:1 and needed to Activate two of my figures as a result. I decided The Crimson Terror would Run 7″ directly towards the Cannon, as planned. Bloodscar also Ran (9″) forward, but didn’t expose himself to Limeskull and stayed behind the tall hill. Blocking line of sight is such a lifesaver for a melee focused group such as mine.
Hope: I wanted to keep Limeskull in reserve until the rest of the enemy posse had moved, so I activated Nedevan and Ran him forward. His massive 9″ Run meant I would be a the Cannon next turn, which was great.
1b. Blood wins Activation
Blood: Time to Run some more. Illit’taex Ran in a straight line west, and would be in the cover of the hills approaching Limeskull soon. Sendar followed Bloodscar’s approach with a Run.
Hope: Limeskull was out of range and out of sight of everyone so he Ran up the tall hill he had deployed by, which gave him a commanding view of the field.

Turn 2 – Enemy Sighted
2a. Blood wins Activation (again!)
Blood: Time to keep on moving up. I Ran Illit’taex down the flank of Limeskull. Next turn he’d make the deadly approach across the open terrain, but hopefully I could distract Limeskull with more tempting targets until Illit’taex was closer. Sendar also Ran, but couldn’t quite make it out of line of sight. Unfortunately she was inside the long range of Limeskull, but maybe the modifiers would save her.
Hope: Tribe of the Blood Pact had made a bit of a mistake in leaving Sendar exposed, but I didn’t need to waste an early activation to take advantage of it. Instead I had Red Dove and Glowstar dismount Nedevan, which used all of their Action Phases. It left them all with a Movement Phase though, so both humans moved right up to the Cannon (close enough to fire it now!) while Ducky headed south towards Sendar, hoping to slow down her and Bloodscar before they reached the center.
2b. Hope wins Activation (for once)
Hope: Time to start the shootin’. Limeskull lined up on the distant Sendar who was basically at maximum range. She was in Cover (-1 Damage) but Limeskull was at a high Elevation (+1 Damage), so no mods from that. He managed to hit 4 times, one of which was a Critical. In total he did 6 damage and Sendar failed her Bravery Test and is Fleeing.
Blood: Sendar will have to waste some time Fleeing backwards and then moving right back in, so that’ll be annoying. I snapped off a shot with Bloodscar at the Ducky dinosaur, but I missed on 10+. Bloodscar moved forward and behind a tree, hoping to survive any early activations next turn. Finally The Crimson Terror moved closer to the Cannon and Glowstar and Red Dove. They were quite far away but I figured I might be able to reach them with a Charge. Unfortunately I failed the roll (needed 5+) so The Crimson Terror stayed where he was.

Turn 3 – Into the Barbwire
3a. Hope wins Activation
Hope: Hmm kind of a tough call who to activate first. On the one hand I could shoot with Limeskull at Sendar again before she Flees and maybe even kill her. But The Crimson Terror is going to get into melee range and it’d be great to shoot him before the -1 Melee modifier (plus he hasn’t Moved yet, so that’s another -1 avoided), since his AR 4 is enough of a problem already. In the end I decided to shoot at The Crimson Terror as it’s not like Sendar won’t be a target again in the future. To that end Glowstar aimed his Auto Shotgun at 9+, hitting 3 times for 8 damage, but unfortunately also rolling a 1 and requiring a Reload. A Panic token was added to The Crimson Terror from the damage, which should slow him down a bit. Glowstar then moved back outside the barbwire (which was counted as Difficult Terrain) but was sure to still be within 4″ of the Cannon.
Blood: Now that The Crimson Terror had Panic on him I wasn’t convinced of his ability to reach melee. Plus he could handle Red Dove’s firing if it came to that. So I left the dinosaur as is and instead moved Bloodscar into the barbwire cage. He Charged 4″ into melee with Red Dove, then savagely hit with both attacks with a double roll of 11 for a total of 8 damage. Red Dove is down to 1 HP and failed his Bravery Test and is Fleeing. Too bad I couldn’t finish the job!
3b. Blood wins Activation
Blood: Time to keep the hits rolling. I rolled for The Crimson Terror’s Panic Movement (D4 in his case) and unfortunately got a 1. So after moving and Running through the barbwire he was still 1″ short of melee with Red Dove, but at least close enough to deny a Charge. Glowstar having to Reload would mean The Crimson Terror would be a bit safer for another turn until he could get into combat.
Hope: I aimed to counter the increasing melee presence in the middle. Since Sendar was less of a threat I decided to swing Nedevan around and move into melee with Bloodscar. I hit 1 time for 3 damage. Not a ton, but Nedevan’s big pool of HP should keep the Savage Leader busy for a while.

3c. Hope wins Activation
Hope: When I look at the middle I see a giant clump of enemy just BEGGING for a cannonball. Red Dove was thankfully Fleeing which meant I could easily escape combat with Bloodscar. I fled him backwards, then fired the Cannon at Bloodscar! Yar! I hit him for 6 damage and the 2″ Explosion clipped The Crimson Terror for 5 damage, and unfortunately also Nedevan for the same. Like a true coward Bloodscar is Fleeing, and both dinosaurs have a Panic token added.
Blood: Well that was ugly, but at least Red Dove hit their Ducky dinosaur with some friendly fire. Bloodscar has seen better days though. Anyways I Fled Sendar away from the closest enemy (Nedevan), then she turned and shot at the dinosaur, hitting 3 times (with 2 Criticals!) for 5 damage, which added a Panic token to Ducky.
3d. Hope wins Activation (by one!)
Hope: Limeskull had no chance to hit The Crimson Terror at such long range, but Bloodscar was perfectly placed to get shot. I needed an 11+ to hit but managed to hit once (6A is so nice) for 3 damage (thanks Elevation!), which put Bloodscar down to 1 HP!
Blood: I finished the turn by moving Illit’taex along his hillside flank. After a big Run he was at the base of Limeskull’s hill. If he could weather downward fire for a turn I could get into melee with the Neotechnoist Leader.

Turn 4 – Roar of the Cannon
4a. Blood wins Activation
Blood: Bloodscar was in a tenuous position with 1 HP and enemy guns all around. There wasn’t any cover nearby, so I decided to make some! Bloodscar used his Retreat! Trait to move The Crimson Terror 4″ into melee with Red Dove (who only had 1 HP), but also angled the dinosaurs body to try to block line of sight to Limeskull. After that Bloodscar Fled away from Nedevan, then Ran back in behind the hill that was The Crimson Terror.

Hope: I guess Bloodscar didn’t learn his lesson that I have no problem using the Cannon on my own people if it benefits me…I guess that’s more of a Savage thing than a Neotechnoist, but I guess it could be a cold calculated call which might fit the technologically advanced people well. Regardless I fired the Cannon with Glowstar at The Crimson Terror at 10+ to hit. I was just within 12″ of Limeskull in case I needed the Yeehaw! re-roll, but thankfully the shot hit without aid. The Crimson Terror took 6 damage, and both Red Dove and Bloodscar took 5 damage from the 2″ Explosion, which killed them both! After their leader was slain Illit’taex and Sendar BOTH failed their Bravery Tests and were Fleeing, hah! Glowstar finished his epic turn by moving away from The Crimson Terror towards Nedevan.
4b. Hope wins Activation
Hope: Having Illit’taex Fleeing gives Limeskull a bit of breathing space, but I knew the persistent bugger would be back soon. So I moved Limeskull to the edge of the cliff and fired down at Illit’taex, hitting for 4 (one of which as a Critical) for 7 damage. He still has 6 HP left though, unfortunately.
Blood: The Crimson Terror still has two Panic tokens, so I had to roll for his PMV again. I lucked out and got a 4, so I was able to move and then Charge 2″ into melee with Glowstar. I rolled well and hit for 5 damage, but Glowstar managed to pass his Bravery Test. After recovering his wits the dinosaur still had 1 Panic token left.
4c. Blood wins Activation
Blood: Time to move my last two entities for the turn. Most of it would be Fleeing after Bloodscar’s untimely death. Illit’taex Fled back, almost to the table edge in fact, and then reversed and Ran towards Limeskull’s hill. If he managed to survive another turn I’d get into melee with the leader. Then Sendar also Fled away, but used her Action Phase to apply the Small IRP for +2 HP (could have been a better roll, alas).
Hope: By getting into melee with Glowstar it turned out The Crimson Terror was also in combat with Nedevan. The Ducky turned and tried to smash the dinosaur with it’s crest, but missed both attacks on a rather challenging 11+.

Turn 5 – Cleanup Crew
5a. Hope wins Activation
Hope: My ideal plan for this activation was to use Glowstar’s Neck Shot Trait on The Crimson Terror, which would have given +4 damage and meant I could possibly kill the dinosaur. But Glowstar still hadn’t had a chance to Reload from way back, so his Auto Shotgun was pretty much useless. I didn’t want to risk a Cannon shot directly into the crowd again since it’d hit Glowstar himself and the Ducky. So instead, with luck, I could get the bullet sink of Illit’taex out of the way. Limeskull aimed down the cliff again and fired, but only hit 3/6 times for 5 damage, which left Illit’taex with 1 HP! Plus he passed his Bravery Test, which meant he might be able to reach Limeskull and dish out some hurt with that Pike.
Blood: The Crimson Terror lived up to his name by stomping and goring Glowstar, who was unluckily stuck between two towering dinosaurs. I hit for 5 damage which killed the human. Also I got to remove my last Panic token…not that it mattered since it looked like a straight up brawl to the death between the dinosaurs.
5b. Blood wins Activation
Blood: Yeesh Illit’taex is really running on fumes. I moved him to the base of Limeskull’s cliff, but failed to Charge the measly 4″ needed to reach the Leader. So much for my awesome flank. Anyways after that failure I moved Sendar closer to the center and fired at Nedevan. She didn’t let me down with 2 hits (1 of which was a Critical) for 3 damage. I really wish she had something besides an 80kw Six-Shooter as 0D is painfully useless. Anyways Nedevan is down to 5 HP at least!
Hope: The titan brawl continued in the middle, but Nedevan again failed to do anything to the Armored enemy. Having a base MMC of 7 against AR 4 is really painful, especially with only 2 Attacks.

Turn 6 – Last Man Standing
6a. Hope wins Activation
Hope: Illit’taex has snuck behind Limeskull enough that I had to waste my Movement Phase turning around to face him. I unleashed another salvo, expecting a kill, but terrible dice meant NOTHING hit and Illit’taex survived!
Blood: Illit’taex was able to survive with 1 HP against 6 point blank Attacks, probably by praying to some Savage pagan god. Eagerly he moved up the hill and stabbed at Limeskull, but after ALL that running and dodging and pain he only hit 1 time for 4 damage!
6b. Hope wins Activation (again)
Hope: Looks like that hill is bad luck for both of us or something. Anyways speaking of bad luck Nedevan failed to hit The Crimson Terror again (what is that, three times in a row?). Yep, short activation.
Blood: The Crimson Terror really was dawdling too long with that simple herbivore. Somehow I missed all attacks even though I only needed 7+ (rolled a terrible 6, 6, and 4). So it’s up to the humans to carry the team. Sendar moved in behind the hill and Charged 2″ into Ducky’s flank, hitting a solid 4 out of 4 times for 8 damage which totally killed Nedevan. That’s how it’s done.

Turn 7 – Desperate Cat and Mouse (Dino and Human?)
7a. Hope wins Activation. Only Limeskull remains against Illit’taex, Sendar, and The Crimson Terror
Hope: Eh could be a tough one. The good news is I rolled better than absolute GARBAGE (aka last turn) so Limeskull was able to easily kill Illit’taex. I was afraid that Sendar might hop on the uncontested Cannon and outrange my feeble Light Repeater, so I dropped Limeskull down out of line of sight behind the tall hill.
Blood: A dinosaur and villainous vixen against a wounded Neotechnoist Leader? I think I can win this one! I Ran both Sendar and The Crimson Terror towards Limeskull’s hiding place. He’d be out of options very soon.

Turn 8 – Gonna Take You With Me
8a. Hope wins Activation (by one)
Hope: Definitely hanging by a thread here. I moved Limeskull back down the hill and to medium range with Sendar. Too bad I shot terribly and only hit for 3 damage with him! Better than no hits I guess, but still I had kind of hoped he’d finish her off and then maybe survive the dinosaur somehow.
Blood: Sendar returned fire after moving to her medium range, but missed all the shots on a 10+. The Crimson Terror did what dinosaurs do best, and that is Ran forward towards his prey. The noose was closing.

Turn 9 – Bring Her Down
9a. Hope wins Activation (again!)
Hope: I think winning initiative has saved me so far, but The Crimson Terror can basically reach melee regardless of where I go. Ugh I should have stayed on the tall hill but I got so caught in thinking I could outrun the inevitable. Anyways since I was already trapped I just moved Limeskull into line of sight of Sendar and fired. Again I rolled badly and only did another 3 damage, which left her with 2 HP. That was actually the 2 HP the Small IRP had healed earlier, so there ya go.
Blood: Again Sendar returned fire, but this time hit with 1 Critical for 2 damage, but also rolled a 1 and needs to Reload! Good thing her Staff doesn’t need ammo…Oh and of course The Crimson Terror moved into melee with Limeskull.

Turn 10 – All Over
10a. Blood wins Activation
Blood: If dinosaurs could speak I’m sure The Crimson Terror would quip something like “Hey Limeskull, check this out!” before dealing 6 damage. I guess I’ll just have to settle for hitting 3 of 3 times and killing Limeskull, which wins me the game!

After Action Report
Hope: You know I honestly though I had this one in the bag. I guess I underestimated The Crimson Terror’s survivability, and also got a little over committed with Glowstar and Red Dove in the middle. Oh and my total inability to kill Sendar at the end was kind of annoying. But I also was able to deny Tribe of the Blood Pact access to the Cannon for basically the entire game, and ALMOST killed all their humans. I’d say I was a little overequipped, especially Red Dove who didn’t get to use much of anything the whole game. Having high AR helped as it meant more misses and less damage, although it’s a tough call whether high AR is better than high HP. But yeah, very close game and I just wish I had played the end a bit differently (like going back up the tall hill instead of taking to the ground). And I don’t want to be petty but the slightly smaller table really didn’t help matters, as it meant my turns of free shooting on the melee based posse was cut down by 12″ or so.

Blood: Ah the delicious taste of victory. It always feels extra satisfying to win with a bunch of Savages armed with polearms, especially against high tech Neotechnoists. My most valuable asset was definitely The Crimson Terror, his AR 4 is pretty tough to crack with 100 IP and the related RMCs. Bloodscar did pretty well in the middle, although he took a lot of firepower and died earlier than I would have liked. Sendar was terrible at the start but redeemed herself by only missing a single shot all game (with base RMC too!) and by finishing off Nedevan. Illit’taex was great in theory, but yeah, that was a loooooooong haul to Limeskull, and he sort of let me down when I got to grips by only hitting once. Oh well, I still won and plundered.

Complete Turn Log
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