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"Stargrunt battle report plus pics!" Topic


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Stinger Six29 Jun 2008 9:34 p.m. PST

I finally managed to get a game of Stargrunt going, which I have been wanting to try for quite some time. My opponent, Jonathan, and I played the first scenario in the main rulebook (Recon in Force) using infantry squads only to keep things simple while we learned the game. I was using my Pig Iron Heavy Infantry, and Jonathan was using a set of the old FASA Vor Union minis (which I was very impressed by I must add).

After a quick explanation of the rules, we set up. The scenario allows for hidden set up with dummy counters in the mix for both sides. Then once you've put all the counters down, you take away three from your opponent (without looking at what they are) and if any units are drawn, they aren't available for the game.

After this draw two of my squads wouldn't be in this fight, leaving me with my HQ squad and a leadership 3 squad. Urgh! Jonathan wound up not losing any of his units to this draw.

As far as our troop lists, because of what minis Jonathan had available, he had fewer troops than I did, with 6 per squad as opposed to my 8. Our troop quality was Veteran for me and Regular for Jonathan. His troops had better armor (d8 to my d6) and I had slightly better weapons (FP3 to his FP2).

Jonathan set up mostly on the right flank of his side of the table, starting behind a hill. I spread my unit more across the middle. The table had a gulley between some hills and woods running across the center from right to left.

Our objectives were to ID the enemy units, shoot them up as much as possible, and minimize our own casualties.

The turns passed quickly, and I lost count of how many we played. What I can say is that they went pretty quickly. not counting any time I spent with my face in the rulebook looking things up.

At the start of the game, Jonathan used an Observe action to spot a hidden unit counter in some woods which turned out to be a dummy. Then he moved into the woods in the center of his side of the table.

I activated my HQ squad, moved it behind some rocks on the hill it was on and went In Position. The HQ squad stayed there for the rest of the game.

link

As the game developed and more squads were revealed, the rest of Jonathan's platoon moved up the hill on his right, while my remaining squad moved forward behind a wall on my right.

link

By this point the shooting had begun, with Jonathan's teams in the woods and on the hill firing at my HQ squad. With hard cover and the benefit of being In Position, the fire, heavy though it was, only managed to put one Suppression marker on the Legion HQ. When Jonathan tried to move his HQ squad into the woods, my HQ squad opened fire, scoring a kill on his radioman and wounding his sniper (we weren't playing with the detailed sniper rules at this point, just counting them as support weapons in the squads). He later managed to get the HQ squad behind the woods and out of LOS, and gave 1st aid to the wounded sniper.

link

Both Jonathan and I began using our platoon commanders' ability to transfer activations to our squads. Jonathan kept the fire on my hilltop position hot but the combination of range, cover, and in Position die shifts, and some unhelpful rolls for Jonathan, kept my HQ squad fighting. They were usually able to shake off any Suppression markers and only took one KIA during the game.

With two enemy squads on my left, and one in front, I figured I needed to do something bold. With a Transfer activation from the platoon leader, my 3rd squad ran across the sunken road and onto the rocky hill. Once they moved into position, they were able to combine their fire with that of the HQ squad to lay multiple Suppression markers on the German units in the woods.

Jonathan kept shooting at my HQ squad, but again, bad dice for him and die shifts in my favor for cover and In Position kept me going there.

link

With the German squad in the woods under double suppression, and out of LOS from other enemy units, I decided to charge my 3rd squad into close combat. Reaction rolls were made and I went in and Jonathan's troops stood their ground. In the fighting that followed, the Legionnaires wounded two and KO'd two of the Grenadiers, forcing the survivors out of the woods.

I now found myself rather far forward of my starting positions and Jonathan's troops were quite close and in numbers. Jonathan regrouped his shattered squad, bringing the survivors together into his HQ squad. I then began to withdraw, 3rd squad taking two of Grenadiers along with them as prisoners.

link

link

There were a couple more turns before Jonathan decided to concede. We figured he could have dumped even more fire on my HQ squad and probably pinned or caused a few more casualties before I managed to retreat 3rd squad off the board.

I had a good time playing this and Jonathan said he enjoyed it too. I really like the way Stargrunt makes the actions of the unit the primary focus and doesn't rely on individual heroes waving swords around in a high-tech firefight. I like the way it doesn't use points, and doesn't require balanced sides to make a good game. Good tactics, good troops, and a bit of luck (and yes, decent gear) are what takes you to victory.

I like the activation and command system, and it's fun trying to allocate commands and actions to best effect. I also like the way the tactics come together – suppression by fire and movement by squads really mirrors actual tactics more than a lot of rulesets I've seen. And I enjoy the way it is scenario based

I know we made some rules goofs. I pulled my 3rd squad back carrying along two of the wounded grenadiers as prisoners when I should have grabbed the KO'd guys (whom we actually allowed to escape from the aftermath of the assault). I still need to get my head fully around the casualty determination mechanics – it's not hard but it involves just a bit of calculation that caused me to stumble up a couple of times. And I need to look at the activation mechanics a bit more closely.

But, all in all, it was a good, fun first game, and it gave Jonathan and I a good introduction to the Stargrunt game.

I'm really looking forward to playing again, maybe a sniper hunt scenario or some sort of game involving troops waiting for the dropship to come in and pick them with their wounded before a much larger enemy force overruns the LZ.

Stargrunt! Hoo-ah!

Rassilon29 Jun 2008 9:44 p.m. PST

Love the AAR! Thanks so much!

Adrian

mattblackgod29 Jun 2008 10:14 p.m. PST

Cool – thanks for sharing. I should dust off my copy of SG2.

wolvermonkey29 Jun 2008 11:46 p.m. PST

Cool batrep thanks. And the pics were cool too. Always wanted to try this game. Maybe one day…………..

thabear29 Jun 2008 11:55 p.m. PST

Ive only ever played one game of Stargrunt although i have two platoons painted up of the fantastic 25mm GZG figures . Is there anywhere online that discusses Stargrunt and the game ? i havent had much luck getting anyone to play in my local group , but id like to try again after reading that AAR , thanks and well done .
cheers tom

Grey Ronin30 Jun 2008 1:39 a.m. PST

Tom, you need to look at stargrunt.ca/main.htm

an excellent site by Tom and Adrian, two stalwarts from the GZG list.

nazrat30 Jun 2008 6:06 a.m. PST

This is a fairly active SG II and Full Thrust Yahoo Group that you might enjoy… link

Top Gun Ace30 Jun 2008 10:11 p.m. PST

Excellent report.

Thanks for sharing.

I will have to get some figs painted up, and give it a try…..

Only Warlock01 Jul 2008 3:28 p.m. PST

SGII is still the best Squad level sci-fi skirmish game out. Best of all it's now FREE from GZG as a download!

Stinger Six01 Jul 2008 3:33 p.m. PST

I think I took away a couple of points on game play from this battle.

1. Fire and maneuver – I'm sure there are other systems out there that do this, but SGII is my first experience with a minis ruleset that really encourages it. Placing enemy units under fire, pinning them, then moving in for a close assault is how you do it.

2. Command – The way my HQ squad operated just felt right. At least one action per activation went towards activating a different squad and getting them going. I also enjoy having to make successful Communication rolls to get this done. It wasn't a High Powered Hero charging forward, it was a guy who was simply coordinating things and telling the other squads where to go and what to do.

3. Troop Quality – Wow, so important! From everything to laying down fire, movement, morale, all of it. SGII really puts this front and center. It's the core of the game.

I haven't played enough to know all the intricacies and faults of the game, but I'm really liking it so far.

Top Gun Ace01 Jul 2008 11:04 p.m. PST

Is there a decent reference sheet to provide a quick overview on how to get started?

I bought this years ago, and never played it, since the up and down die changes, various weapons capabilities, number of dice to use in different situations, and other modifiers just make it appear a bit daunting to get started with.

I imagine it isn't as bad as all that, once you know how to play, but getting started on your own from scratch, with so many choices and issues is a bit confusing, especially when you can have varying numbers of troops in a squad, plus support weapons, different weapons' effectiveness, etc.

For example, the rules state the defender rolls two dice during firing combat, and the attacker gets at least two dice, plus more for support weapons. That's pretty straight-forward, but then right after that it says the defender rolls ONE die, which is apparently the range die. So what happened to the other defender die, and what is it used for?

Why do you need to roll a die for the defender for range (it seems to me that should be a fixed modifier reducing the effectiveness of the attack, as should be the effectiveness of the attack on the defenders' armor once hits occur, but apparently that is not the case)?

Any clarification, or other info would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Rob

Stinger Six02 Jul 2008 10:56 a.m. PST

That's a pretty clumsy goof in the rules, eh? No doubt they could use a good cleanup and reorganization. But to clarify, the defender only rolls one die.

As for rolling a die for the range, all I can say is, it works. I like the fire combat resolution in the game.

Hyperbear's Stargrunt site has some good info, including official errata.

link

Top Gun Ace02 Jul 2008 1:31 p.m. PST

Thanks for the link to the errata, and other stuff.

That is very helpful.


Best regards,

Rob

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