The battle near Caddo Lake continues. The 36ths Division 71st Brigade has been badly battered, with one regiment in rout, the other trapped against the waters edge. But the division has depth, and a has organized a counterattack with the 143rd Regiment supported by two, as yet uncommitted tank brigades. Also, advanced forces from the army of Saint Louis are swooping in behind the Martian in a classic pincer move.
When trying to design the scenario I have to think about it. I regard the value of the LIC as 1500 points, this is based on building a simulator and running 10,000 battles for the results, and the balance point for the LIC was between 7 and 8 assault tripods. I was looking forward to the Overseer as a counterbalance to that, and in essence, it did.
When the Overseer first hit the table last Feb, in what was later called "The Great Metcalf Turkey Shoot", (see philsmartianfront.blogspot.com/2019/04/the-great-metcalf-gap-turkey-shoot.html) I was asked what I was going to do about it. I said I was going to ignore it. It's an environmental effect that I can do nothing about. If I kill 9 units of Martians, then it will retreat. And that is how the game went. It fired it's sun gun on turn one, destroyed a tower and the Flame Tank, then spent turn 2 recharging. Then the Humans won the game at the top of the third.
This game, Garth learned from that debacle and just used the Overseer's 3 heat rays per turn to good effect. While the "New Orleans" scored zero hits due to range and bad die rolls on turns 1 and 2, it looked like a non-starter as well.
I would to see all the big toys we have hit the table some day, just for the sake of the photographs, but I can't balance the scenarios with two LIC's on one side (3000 points) against 15 Assault Tripods on the other, which would be in a solid line of 60 inches of a standard 72 inch board. Leaving no gaps to account for those detonation cascades. You might as well just leave the figures at home and just roll dice.
So, yes, the big boys do over dominate the board. As much as I like to see them, and my "Nell" was last seen almost 3 years ago, the goal is to create an interesting game, that all the players can enjoy.
Part of the problem is also we tend to have 6 players on a 6 food board. Alas, the tyranny of the standard 4x8 sheet of plywood . That is really the first consideration of any scenario.
As Scott noted, well done. I too find the LIC and the Overseer a bit of a problem in game balance. Perhaps we should consider starting the game with one or both of these in it with damaged units. Limited ammo for the big gun on the LIC, maybe a missing arm with heat ray, one or two less drone units should help a bit. How to point these might be an issue, but, just wing the balance to make a fair game. Though I love the units in question, I see limited play value. Of the two, I'd prefer the LIC over the Overseer - but, either will dominate a game with other forces. Perhaps a lone Overseer vs a full force or a lone LIC stranded due to lack of full for a more balanced scenario. Not to mention the wonderful BEF version with that mortar! Finally, the cost of the figures might be an issue as well. In any case, it will be a long time before either of this units hit my painting bench. Sad, but, true.
I had a whole string of limitations on the Land Ironclad in my Fort Edmonton series, just to keep the point value at 750 Nell Special Rules:
The Canadian-American Alliance has been strained by the Canadian acquisition, either found or stolen, depending on your point of view, of the Landship, “Nell”, otherwise known as “The Spirit of Detroit”, as the Americans have named it.
The Americans have been putting pressure on Canada to get “The Spirit of Detroit” back, as such there are numerous rules governing its use.
The Americans have refused to provide the 12”, 7” and 5” shells for “Nell”’s guns. Britain has made shipments of ammunition of all these calibers, but it has yet to reach the Western Canada.
When each of these calibers makes a “to hit” roll that is exactly “1”, that gun is out of ammo. For the 5” guns, this applies only to the turret in question. That turret is out of ammo for the next turn, but is restocked by shifting rounds from other turrets.
A gun that is out of ammo may still be target and fire blanks, to try to fool the Martian that it is still functioning.
Nell needs more coal than all the rest of the 2nd Squadron combined, as such, measures have been taken to conserve coal.
Nell is deployed next to the coaling station. Nell needs to remain there until turn 4 to be fully coaled.
If a heat ray misses Nell, (I.E. A “to hit” roll of 1 or a 2) the coaling station is hit instead, exploding, causing 5 +4 hits to Nell and everyone else within 6”. Units at a range of 6.1 to 12” suffer 3 +2 hits instead.
Nell is running on one boiler out of four, it takes time to stoke up the remaining boilers. As such she moves only 1” on turn 1, 2” on turn 2 and 3” on turn 3.
If not fully coaled, roll a D10 each time Nell moves, or uses the Steam Defense. On a 1, the coal bunkers are empty, and Nell can only move 1” a turn thereafter.
The proper crew for the Landship is considerable and Nell hasn’t been fully crewed with trained personnel.
Due to minimal crew available for damage control, all hits on the Damage Chart 6+ are considered critical hits towards the 5 critical hits required for Nell to be considered destroyed.
If a critical gun hit is made, roll the die to determine which gun is hit. The Martians may reroll that die if they see fit. The reroll must be kept.
Some of the manpower to crew Nell was taken from infantry units.
Infantry and Machine Gun unit only gets one additional hidden movement counter instead of two.
Japanese telephones work pretty much like ours, except the person on the other end can't understand you.