Hunting aliens… A Stars & Lasers battle

( This is a play though of a new scenario I have been working on, I still need to sort out all of the details but there is enough to at least get a game from it )

The United Earth Federation has seen an increase in attacks on their colonies and ships out by the Corillous Sectors, the reports coming in are of a Reformer force in the area so the UEF have sent out a force to deal with these deadly aliens.

They have sent into the area a force including a battleship supported by several light cruisers and frigates, part of this force is escorting a small convoy of much needed supplies to one of the outlying planets in the system, this convoy has been attacked by the aliens.

So can the rest of the UEF force get to the convoy in time to save it and destroy the Reformers before they get the raw material that they need to make more ships…

The forces involved in the initial attack are as follows –

Reformers –

Core-Mind Hive Battleship with Meta-Disruptor

2 x light cruisers with Meta-Disruptors

3 x Splinter ‘Hammers’

3 x Splinter ‘Darts’

UEF convoy –

Light Cruiser

3 x frigates

4 x heavy freighters

The rest of the UEF force –

Battleship with railgun turret

Light cruiser

2 x frigates

The two main forces set up at opposite ends of the table ready for the first turn, the UEF reinforcements need to roll any double on 2D6 at the end of each turn starting at the end of turn two, once a double is rolled they will arrive in the centre of one random table edge at the beginning of the next turn ( with my dice rolling that could be bad, they may never turn up! )

This is the initial set-up with the convoy on the left and the Reformers on the right
The convoy with its escorts of one light cruiser and three frigates
The reserves waiting to arrive, one battleship, one light cruiser and two frigates
The Reformers with the Core-Mind Battleship, two light cruisers and bombers, plus the six Splinters ( Hammers and Darts )

The UEF must attempt to either get at least half of the convoy off the opposite end of the table or destroy the Reformer fleet to achieve a minor victory or achieve both to gain a major victory.

The Reformers must attempt to destroy as many of the ships as they can in this battle, because their drones need to dismantle the UEF ships for their raw materials, this is what they need to build more ships for the Hive.

The Reformers get full points for any ship that they destroy and need 600 points for a minor victory or they must destroy at least two freighters for a minor victory or achieve both for a major victory.

Turn one saw the Reformers using the Splinters high speed to try and close the gap between them and the convoy.

The frigates supporting the convoy fired off a few missiles hoping to slow them down a little.

The heavy freighters just powered forward using their huge engines to try and get to safety as quick as possible.

Only one of the UEF missiles managed to get through and hit one of the Darts causing some light damage, the UEF need to do better than that if they wish to stop these aliens.

Turn two, and the Darts move in to attack the lead freighter, but they only manage to do some light damage, the UEF light cruiser moves up to give the freighter some support and manages to strip the shields off of two of the Reformer ships and put some light damage into the small alien ships.

The third Dart moves in and hits the defenseless freighter but only manages to put two points of damage into the ships hull…

Two of the UEF frigates turn sharply around and attack the Darts from behind hoping to take advantage of the close range attacks, but sadly the little alien ships are harder to hit than they had hoped, both frigates only managed light damage on one of the alien ships.

The lead freighter could do nothing else other than power on towards the alien ships and hope that he could punch a way through to safety, one of the Reformer light cruisers moves forward and fires off its Meta-Disruptor hitting the freighter engines taking all of its thrusters off line until they can be repaired, the second Reformer light cruiser moves into position to fire its own Meta-Disruptor and manages to hit the freighters engines again destroying them totally, the freighter is going nowhere now!!

The Core-Mind Battleship moves slowly forward and fires its own Meta-Disruptor at the closest UEF frigate and again hits the ships engines, taking them out until they can be repaired.

Turn three… ( oh dear my dice are keeping to their normal low standards, I failed all of the shield and repair rolls for the UEF force and passed all of the Reformer ones!! )

Now that the leading freighters engines are destroyed the hive mind turned the two Reformer missiles away and they headed off towards new targets, two more freighters!

One group of alien bombers swooped towards one of the UEF frigates and they tore the ship apart with their missiles, the frigate did manage to take out one of the bombers as they came close.

Double three!!! And the UEF remaining ships arrive, things are about to get really interesting ( I did not expect to roll a double on my first try, I thought I would be waiting ages for these ships to turn up )

The UEF battleship turned and headed straight for the Core-Mind battleship to see if they could end this quickly, on the way past it fires off a full broadside into the nearest Hammer ship and is satisfied to see his ships lasers rip through the small ships hull.

He then orders all forward weapons to target the big alien battleship and pleased to see his railgun punch a hole through the big ships hull.

One Reformer light cruisers move to protect the big hive ship and fired off its Meta-Disruptors at the UEF battleship hitting the battleships engines!! the other moved to attack the newly arrive UEF light cruiser, but it only managed to strip away the cruisers shields.

Two of the Darts used their speed to get in behind a UEF frigate and destroy it with a couple of missiles and concentrated micro-pulse laser fire.

One of the Hammers rams into a UEF frigate and managed to put some damage on the bigger ship but destroyed one of its micro-pulse lasers in the process!

The Escorting UEF light cruiser moves in fires everything it has at two Reformer targets, a Hammer ship and a light cruiser, the Hammer is split in two by the light cruisers lasers and the Reformer light cruiser sees huge explosions on board from as the UEF lasers lance into her hull ( the Reformer light cruiser is down to its last point of damage after receiving a huge internal explosion from a critical hit 😀 )

The Core-mind battleship gets into position to fire at the UEF battleship with its Meta-Disruptor and only manages to hit non-essential systems, but it does then manage to put two fresh holes in a UEF light cruisers hull…

Turn four and the engineers on board the UEF battleship have failed to get the ships engines back up and running, so the ship can only move straight forward at its current speed, they also didn’t get its shields back up either, that’s not good!!

The Reformer bombers swoop in on the UEF battleship but only three manage to get through the supporting PDS fire, but they still manage to rip huge holes in the big ships hull.

One of the UEF light cruisers moves around to hit the Reformer battleship from point blank range, but the big ships PDS takes out the spread of missiles and all the light cruiser manages to do is some more light damage.

One of the Reformer light cruisers turns and chases the escaping freighter, hitting it with everything it had but didn’t manage to stop it.

The Reformer battleship manages to squeeze through a small gap and positions itself perfectly to do huge amounts of damage on the UEF ships… it ripped huge holes in the rear of the UEF battleship and did the same to one of the UEF frigates, but just could hit the fast escaping freighter so as a last attempt the Core-Mind ship sent three missiles off to chase the freighter.

One of the UEF light cruisers moves forward and hits a Reformer light cruiser at point blank range destroying the alien ship.

The Core-Mind called to one of its Splinter Darts to come and repair some of its damage, the small ship weaved its way between all the UEF ships and smashed in the big Reformer ship, as soon as the ships made contact the small ship broke down into small spider like drones which skittered all over the big ship repairing the hull damage as they went.

Turn five… ( well some interesting dice rolling for repairs and shields, all of the Reformer drones failed to get their shields back up, and the UEF battleships engineers failed to get its engines back up and running! )

The Reformer bombers moved in and attacked the UEF battleship and managed to hit the big ship doing loads of damage, but the ship just wouldn’t die!

An alien light cruiser moves after the escaping freighter hoping to finally stop the big ship, but even after hitting it with everything it had the big freighter still kept going, but the cruiser did get some satisfaction as it took out one of the UEF frigates that was close by.

The Core-Mind battleship turns slowly around and brings it full broadside of micro-pulse lasers and causes huge explosions inside the UEF battleship ripping it apart!!

Turn six and the last of the Reformer bombers streaks off after the escaping freighter and goes in for a bombing run and the freighter explodes before it reaches safety…

The alien light cruiser that was chasing the freighter turns away from the dead ship and brings its guns to bear on another freighter, its Meta-Disruptor hits but does not disrupt any major systems.

The remaining UEF light cruiser moves up to point blank range of the Reformer battleship and hits it with all it can and manages to shake the Core-Mind losing contact with the ships systems for a short while.

That may have put the big ship out of this battle for just long enough to let the UEF ships escape…

The two remaining heavy freighters trying to weave their way through all the ships

Turn seven and the big alien battleship turns right around and fires its Mega-Disruptor into the rear of the closest freighter taking down the ships PDS systems, and then the big ship opens up a full broadside into a small UEF frigate, the ship never stood a chance, another ship that isn’t going to escape this battle!

Both freighters moved as fast as they could towards the edge of the table and safety, both ships were now within 5” of the edge so would both be off next turn if they can survive.

The remaining UEF light cruiser moves to put itself between the freighters and the alien battleship.

One of the Hammers makes one final ram into the rear of a freighter causing both ships to explode!!!!

The Reformer light cruiser pulls around as quickly as it can to bring its Meta-Disruptor to bear on the last freighter and manages to take down the ships shields.

But this was not enough to stop the ship moving off at the start of the next turn, the remaining UEF ships decided that it would be a good time to FTL out and that was the end of the battle… ouch! that was painful, only the two light cruisers and one heavy freighter survived the battle.

Well it was getting late so I gave the Reformers their major victory and ended the game, they probably could have taken out one more light cruiser in the turn but it didn’t make much difference to the battle, I will play this scenario a few more times to see if it works correctly, the UEF do need to be able to win sometimes!

That was a fun but hard fought battle, the Reformers are really hard to stop if they get some good dice rolls and manage to keep the Core-Mind Battleship alive, that big ship was still only at half damage at the end of the game and that was even with it failing to reinstate its shields for four turns. It also had a few Splinter ships left to help repair it if needed.

The main mistake I made during this battle was that I should have concentrated all my attacks on the Splinter Darts and Hammers to stop the big ship repairing, doing that may have given the UEF more of a chance.

Oh well the Reformers have plenty of raw material after this battle to build more ships, so I think the next battle might be a lot bigger!!

( I know that smoke / fire on spaceships looks a little silly, but it was the only way I could tell which ships were destroyed and were ready to be taken apart by the Reformer drones, these also made for hazards that the remaining ships had to fly around, I normally remove all destroyed ships in my games but wanted to show the wrecked ships in this battle )

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