This past Saturday a bunch of the guys got together for a test drive of some of the missions and concepts behind NOVAcalypse; if you've been following along with the blog, you're familiar with it, but I'll do a brief summary.
NOVAcalypse is the "cool down period" for Friday and Saturday. A giant, interlinked event under the overall command of some pretty big name people in the 40k world (I can't talk about this quite yet), with kegs of beer lining the giant circle of tables, giant warmachines battling it out at the center across a replica DC National Mall, random hand-out prizes and a laid back atmosphere. It'll be 1500 points per player, 2-man teams, with clubs being able to "enter" together with their club leader as a sub-commander, etc. We're working through a ton of the details, but it should be fun ... this is going to be a big planning year for us.
We'll probably have a "club competition" across the breadth of the Open Convention next year, and NOVAcalypse will be a big part of the net score for that.
The teams and players and lists were basically as follows for this weekend's games ...
Team "Adepticon" - Overall Remote Commander: Matthias (Adepticon TO) - Imperial Faction
Synopsis - Marines with Inquisition Support Landing on a Tau-Converted Imperial World
Team 1 - Dark Angels (Autolas preds, dreadnaught, deathwing termies, tac squads in rhinos) + Imperial Guard (trips demolishers, 6 chimeras with meltavets, company command and lord commissar)
Team 2 - Sisters of Battle (Immo Spam w/ 2 Exorcists) + Sisters of Battle (Fluffier w/ penitents, arco-flagellants, seraphim, but still some basic melta sissies in rhinos)
Team 3 - Space Wolves (trips plasmabacks with dual tricked twolf lords with lone wolves and trips vindicators) + Blood Angels (trips ac/hb baals with trips autolas preds with libby, priest and 4 MSU asm rhino squads)
Team "WarGamesCon" - Overall Remote Commander: JWolf (WGC TO) - Planetary Faction
Synopsis - Tau field commander with converted IG allies (was supposed to be dual Tau, last minute drop/change) readies the defense, while the forces of the orks and chaos grow restless with the impending war
Team 4 - Tau (Railguns, Hammerhead + Misplas crisis team/hq + fire warriors + kroot) + Imperial Guard (5 Meltavets + Melta CCS all in Chimeras + 3 Vendettas + platoon command flamers + 2 IG squads)
Team 5 - CSM (Dameon Green's well-known and GW-site-published LED-lit 1ksons ... oblits + defilers + winged princes + greater daemon + dreadnaughts + csm in rhinos) + Khornate Daemons (Rushputin's well-painted Khornate Demons army ... 2 winged khornate princes, 2 bloodthirsters, various other khorney things) ... This was a 3 dreadnaught 7 monstrous creature combined army
Team 6 - CSM (Berserkers + Kharne + Oblits + Land Raider w/ LC Terms) + Orks (rookie Ork in the AM, veteran Ork in the PM, both kan/buggy/trukk/bwag KFF spam lists)
If you'll use this as a reference, it covers the Sectors/Missions, etc.
You'll make sense of the results.
First, assignments for Round 1
Matthias assigned teams as follows:
Team 1 to Sector 2
Team 2 to Sector 1 w/ the Supreme Commander's Oversight token
Team 3 to Sector 3 w/ the Vital Mission Assignment token
JWolf assigned teams as follows:
Team 4 to Sector 1 w/ the Supreme Commander's Oversight *AND* Vital Mission Assignment tokens
Team 5 to Sector 2
Team 6 to Sector 3
Team 2 splits with Team 4 barely, 1:1 ... Team 2 got pounded at range all game with little ability to retort, and realized it early enough to focus fire on the Objective capturing troops of Team 4, while using suicides and move shens to keep an objective or two of its own in backfield, winning the objective component of the Sector despite losing most of its VP
Team 1 gets tabled by Team 5, not having appropriate solutions for 7 flying monstrous creatures and tons of close combat Khorne gribblies; 2:0 in favor of Team 5
Team 3 nearly tables Team 6, scoring both objectives and winning it 2:0
Round 1 Results - 3 Missions : 3 Missions, tie game
Next round, based upon the results, Matthias assignments are ...
Team 1 to Sector 4
Team 2 to Sector 6, Supreme Commander's Oversight
Team 3 to Sector 5, Vital Mission Assignment
JWolf assignments are ...
Team 4 to Sector 4, Both Tokens again (which proved very powerful, and will probably be changed to not allow doubling up)
Team 5 to Sector 5
Team 6 to Sector 6
Team 4 Brutalizes Team 1 when the Dark Angels player fails a critical multicharge through difficult terrain with 1 terminator squad while the other mishaps off a 12" scatter and is destroyed. The Tau proceeds to annihilate the DA's last combat threat at point blank range in the City before turning massed railguns and missile pods to the open field in order to tag-team the Imperial Guard player of Team 1. Basically a tabling. 2:0 for WarGamesCon
Close fought game where Team 3 secures a guaranteed win on the flag planting mission early by planting flags en masse with Lone Wolves in terminator armor with stormshields, and the Daemons player gets the wrong wave in, half of which scatters into the teeth of Team 3's guns. Team 5 fights furiously for the tie by holding mass troops at the center and flinging monsters at Team 3's tank wall, but by the end of the game Team 3 is barely able to contest the center and pull it out 2:0 ... Sector 6 started AFTER these two games finished, with the overall day tied 5:5
The "late" game, out on the deck with everyone hanging out smokin ceegars, drinkin' whiskey and beer, and bullshitting the night away. This game came down largely to clever management of the Missions, but each team managed one "correctly." Team 2 chose to outflank their Elite Spies, and this turned out to be their downfall, as Team 6 pounced on and ganked them when they arrived, avoiding letting any unit be close enough. Meanwhile, Team 5 flung its Orks as the side that could not be scored for VP at the SoB line, hoping to score plenty of VP kills off the Sisters player that could be scored (the one with the repentia/etc.). Unfortunately, Team 5 also left too much of its CSM army visible, and lost several high value units ... including its land raider to an Exorcist that substituted a "6" from Supreme Commander's Oversight to glance it, and another 6 from Supreme Commander's Oversight (the player had rolled 2 6's) to kill it due to AP1.
Highlight of Game 6 was when the Ork player and the Khorne CSM player drove numerous units right up the gut through the "courtyard" in the center of the capital, up to behind the wall on the SoB side (see pictures), and the Sisters players rolled a couple Immos up to the wall, and the Penitent Engines leaped up on the wall. After some well placed Exorcist shots blew up two trukks and a CSM rhino, they proceeded to bathe the open area in heavy flamerage, nuking a bunch of orks and berzerkers. The battle actually ended up going pretty pear shaped for the Sisters players, but they were able to "block" a lot of their score-able VP away from Team 6, while killing enough of Team 6's score-able VP to secure that mission. Team 6 did manage to get its spies into the ranks of the enemy, ensuring a split.
So, while this probably won't be possible over a sample size of up to 50 teams that we plan for NOVAcalypse, for this test drive Adepticon tied WarGamesCon 6 missions to 6
Final score, 6:6
Learned a lot; the missions were almost all well received and worked well; some tweaks to be made to the way objectives are placed and scored, and to the wording of some of the missions, etc; we need to figure out about 3 more overall tokens (like the supreme commander's oversight and the vital mission assignment), but it was agreed that they shouldn't be doubled up, and that their potency would be diluted somewhat when only 5 are available per commander across ~25+ tables. Lots of work to do refining this idea, but a good fun start.