Second playtest of my new Sci-fi rules.

Work continues on my new rules, I spent most of two days getting all the weapons, troops and vehicles sorted and pointed up so now it was time to point up some troops and see how they work.

I now have about forty weapons for infantry, vehicles, tanks, fliers and support units, so I thought that I would have a simple mix of weapons noting too crazy, but hopefully enough variety to make things interesting.

I also have about ten infantry units including assault troops, armoured infantry etc. etc. and droids and robots.. I wanted droids on the battlefield!!

And then I have about eighteen vehicles including bikes, transports and tanks… oh and walkers and big mechs!! No big mechs this time but I will have some walkers.

All these have had all their stats and points done, now it is playtest, playtest and playtest.

So for this playtest I used the new points system to put together two 1,500 point forces, this was mainly to see what sort of force I could get for 1,500 points…. mmm well that didn’t go well ☹️

The formular I had used for the weapons points made things a bit silly, a basic ten-man squad with basic weapons came to nearly 600 points!! That was no good so I went back to the drawing board and started to change some of the maths.

So after a slight jiggling around of points and some changing of some of the maths the points came down to around 360 points for the same ten-man unit, this was just a basic light infantry unit with basic weapons and one squad support weapon.

For this game I was using five-man squads all with one support weapon each, so each squad was about 182 points.

One side had droids and three APC’s and one heavy tank, the other side went for more medium tanks, I wanted the sides to be a little weighted towards tanks while the other was weighted towards troops and their support.

There has been unrest on a small colony planet in the Omicron system, the main ruling council on Omicron Major has requested help from United Earth Federation because a tyrannical land baron on the small planet has taken control of the small military force there and is demanding that the planet be given independence from Omicron Major.
The UEF sent in a task force to squash the rebel military and to take control back from the land baron, but the rebels were prepared and they were afraid of the UEF force.

The two forces have met by a small processing facility on the hot and dusty little planet…

So after the basic set up both sides started to move towards each other, there was one or two long distance shots but neither side was being very accurate at the moment.

Turn two saw the yellow force ( Rebel troops ) get the early advantage and activated all its tanks hoping to finish this battle quickly, but the first shots they made just bounced off the white forces tank ( UEF troops )

The crew of the UEF tank didn’t let the enemy shots worry them at all they calmly took aim and saw the round from the railgun easily punch through the tough armour of the Rebel tank closest to it.

The other two Rebel tanks fired their main guns at two of the enemy APC’s one shot bounced off the sloping front armour of the APC, but the other one took some damage, not a great turn for the Rebels.

Three of the UEF droids scuttled forward and opened up on the closest Rebel tank pouring shot after shot into the tank and only managed to get a little light damage, even though it was only a medium tank it’s armour was still tough.

The second three droids moved forward and poured a similar amount of shots into the same tank and again only managed a small amount of damage.

Wow!! That was a huge number of shots from those two units of droids, if they had hit a unit of infantry there really wouldn’t have been much left of them, but the tank just shrugged the shots off, it only lost two points of damage!

The support weapons on both sides were not great so far in this battle, none had found their targets, even the rockets fired from one of the UEF APCs just bounced harmlessly off one of the Rebel tanks.

Turn three and well at last some of the rockets were actually hitting their targets and doing some damage, the UEF tank added its shots to the rockets and one of the Rebel tanks was now in bad trouble, it needed to think about getting out of the line of fire or it would soon be out of this battle.

The two units of walkers met by the edge of the complex and the UEF walkers hit the Rebel walkers really hard destroying one and badly damaging the other.

The droids took some damage from the Rebel armoured infantry advancing on them, but returned fire and took out one of the armoured Rebels.

The UEF forces mortar and the Rebel forces rocket launcher were having no luck at all in this battle, neither one of them has managed to do any damage at all so far, the mortar did manage to hit one of the Rebel tanks but the shell failed to penetrate the tanks armour.

Turn four saw one of the Rebel tanks reverse away from the enemy as it had taken a ton of hits and wasn’t staying around to be destroyed.

The walkers continued to blast away at each other!! This saw the second Rebel walker destroyed, then the UEF walkers turn the rest of their weapons on an enemy infantry unit and killed them all.

One unit of droids was hit by a ton of fire, when the smoke cleared all what was left of the droids was scattered all over the ground.

Another Rebel tank on the left of the table was hit by several units and took a load more damage, this tank was now in real trouble, having more tanks in the Rebel force hasn’t really helped against the sheer number of shots coming from the UEF force.

Turn five and well two Rebel tanks are destroyed from massed firing from the walkers and the two APC’s, but things don’t go all the UEF forces way as they lose one of those APC’s and the rest of the droids.

The Rebel force are in trouble as their last tank is badly damaged and the officer and one squad of infantry in the centre have no real support so things could go badly for them next turn.

Both forces have ten units left on the table but the UEF force still has their tank and it is undamaged.

Turn six and the two remaining UEF walkers closed the gap between them and the Rebel APC sitting behind the palm trees, their guns ripped the lightly armoured vehicle apart!!

Every shot fired at the last Rebel tank bounced off its armour, somehow it had survived another turn.

The Rebel support weapon on the hill took out one more of the UEF walkers with some silly long-range shooting!!

The commander of the Rebel force took hits and was now on his own and he was wounded, he decided to call a retreat and headed for safety.

Well that was great fun, I was worried with the Rebel force having the three tanks and a few support weapons and APC’s it looked on paper to be a better / stronger force, but in the battle it was the “lots” of shots that really made the difference.

The droids were fantastic with their chain-guns although they were weak at penetrating the enemy armour, but the number of shots gave them an edge in the battle.

The indirect support didn’t really add enough to the battle for my liking but I think that may have been more to do with my bad dice rolling than anything else, I will have to wait and see how they work in future playtests.

The UEF tank had a more powerful gun than the Rebel tanks and of course it’s armour was tougher and it really showed in the battle, although to be fair I did have some really bad luck with the dice when shooting with the Rebel tanks, they did miss a lot of the time and when they did hit they didn’t manage to penetrate the thick armour.

Very soon I am going to have to design one or two templates or find a way of put them together and having just the one like my other games, as you can see from the pictures of the game I was using the dice to show hits on the units, this is because I haven’t done any datacards for the units yet either, hey its still early days I will get these done eventually.

I did notice a couple of things during the battle that I need to fix now, but that is what playtesting is all about, play the game – find any problems – and fix them 🤔

One of the issues was that I need to add some rules for transports carrying troops and being destroyed, it never happened during this game but it could have and I hadn’t thought about it, so that will be fixed fairly easily.

The other things was I noticed when pointing up the forces for this game was that I hadn’t set out any restrictions for what weapons can be added to an infantry squad, things like number of squad weapons they can have ( heavy or special weapons ) I have put in restrictions for all the vehicles so working stuff out for infantry should be easy.

I also think that I need to add some rules about unit sizes, I didn’t have any issues with these two forces but I did see there could be some issues with some units in the game, those droids were really good in the battle and three in the unit was about right, any more than three for these combat droid’s would be crazy.

Even with the couple of issues I saw this was a good fun game with very little problems, each turn seemed to go by fairly quickly, certainly no longer than many other games I have played and much quicker than some others!

I had a total of twenty-seven units on the table with twelve in the UEF force and fifteen in the Rebel force, not a bad size game.

I know that these two forces were of a similar tech level again, but when playtesting you need to make sure that the basic stuff works before you start to throw in some weird and whacky lists, like units with spears against tanks!!!

Playtesting, playtesting and then more playtesting, lots of games for me 😉

Please follow and like us:


  1. Vic

    Hi Mac – that sounds like it was a lot of fun!

    How are you handling the weapon vs armour part for the tanks? I get the idea from the read through above that the tanks accumulate damage points over time until BOOM! time … which is a bit like the way Gruntz does things.

    Based on my reading of tank crews & their conflicts (Yay, George Forty – that guy really loved his tank books!) I might have been inclined to give the tanks an armour rating (front/side/rear) based on a score of 0-20, and given the tank weapons a ‘penetration bonus’ of +1/+2/+3/+4 etc then roll 1d20 and add the weapons penetration bonus – if the total is equal to or less than the armour rating = no effect (shot bounces off, gets ablated etc).
    If the total exceeds the armour rating by 1-5 tank takes that in damage + 1 automatic critical hit (keep simple … or dont bother), if the total exceeds the armour rating by 6+ tank, he go BOOM!

    And should any vehicle carrying passengers get KO’d roll 1d20 for each passenger/crew – on a 11+ the escape the wreck unharmed, on a 0-10 they’re toast!

    • Mac

      Hi Vic,

      As I like “simple” in my games I have done the tanks / vehicles / walkers / everything basically the same as the Last Drifters and the way those rules handle armour.
      Armour has a value when hit you roll to penetrate and add the Penetration Value of the weapon, if you equal or beat the Armour Value then you get a hit, natural 20 is a critical hit.

      Transport is now done so that if the vehicle is carrying troops etc when destroyed they have a chance of getting out sort of Ok so on a 11+ like you suggest above, but if the vehicle is destroyed by damage from a critical result then they are all dead!!!!
      The vehicle exploded and no one survives, harsh I know but it will make things more interesting.

      I have seen rules before using something similar to Gruntz it can be ok but for now I am going with the above method… if things don’t work out right then I will definitely look at other ways to handle Armour and Weapons Penetration.


  2. Bill

    Hi Mac,

    Sure miss our days up in your game room! Wish I was around to help playtest.

    Say “hi” to the rest of the Warlords for me.


    • Mac

      Hi Bill,

      I also miss our games mate, they were always good fun, lots of great banter and bad dice rolls!! 😉

      There are lots of new members in the club now mate, but I will mention you to the few old timers that are still there.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *