Felonmarming is what a felonmarmer does.

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Bugs in the Reactor AAR

I ran the Bugs in the Reactor scenario from Tomorrow's War on Saturday. I controlled the small colonist security force, Rob was in charge of the Legionnaire Force and Euan was the Alien commander.

As the aliens were counted as Irregulars they seemed to have all the disadvantages of not ever being able to win initiative without the usual benefits so I added a reinforcement option to the scenario - at the end of every turn the aliens could reclaim 1D6 killed aliens and when enough had been reclaimed for a group of 5 they would come on from a random hot spot, there was one in each quarter of the table and one positioned by the alien commander numbered 1 to 5. The alien commander would roll to see which point the reinforcements would arrive, on a roll of 6 the commander could chose which point to enter the table from.

To account for most of the buildings being ruins we said an earthquake had just happened (caused by Bugs tunnelling under the reactor) and the legionnaires were on there way to rescue the colonists from the ruins when they got reports of something far worse occurring.

In addition a media team were present in the area and we would allocate extra points to either side for any action in that sides favour occurring within 6" of the team. At the end of the turn we would roll to see which side could move the media team.

If anyone wants the squad record cards they are here in Open Office format.

Table Setup
The West Side of the Battlefield
The East side of the Battlefield
The Security Force set up first within the residential area facing the reactor complex with two small teams and a converted tractor vehicle mounting a gauss machine gun. The aliens then set up in the reactor complex, lurking amongst the buildings and landscaping. Then the colonists were placed, 30 of them, in the residential area - the two sides taking turns to place each one.

Looking East along the main road
Building 1
Reactor Complex Car Park
Reactor Cooling Pond
Reactor Buildings
The Culvert
The west end of the table
Building 1
Turn 1

The legionnaire force comes on table from the southern road and move up ignoring the cries for help from the citizens hiding in the farm buildings. The security forces fall back into Buildings 2 and 3 to escort the colonists hiding there to safety. The patrol vehicle goes on overwatch coving the approaches from the reactor.

The aliens burst across the road attacking the colonists outside of Building 1 (who flee), the colonists standing around waiting to be interviewed by the media team and towards the hill overlooking the road junction. The alien King (or Queen) rushed forward from behind the Power Plant building catching the security forces by surprise who fail to zap him(or her) with the patrol vehicles gauss cannon. The media team catch it all on camera giving the aliens a bonus victory point. The colonists in the open flee into the Wooded Park.

Turn 2

The legionnaires move up to Building 3 and the hill overlooking the road junctions where they engage the aliens crossing the road. The aliens in the open are engaged by a legionnaire fireteam outside of Building 3 killing 3 of the group, all recorded by the media team for a bonus point to the humans. Meanwhile one of the security teams leaves Building 3 with a bunch of the colonists. The other team is busy collecting the colonists from the two floors of Building 2.

The aliens burst into Building 1 and engaged the colonists hiding inside in close combat, the colonists managed to hold them off for a round of fighting before going down. The carnage was picked up by the media team giving the aliens another bonus victory point.

Turn 3

 The legionnaires fully occupy Building 3 and set up overwatch teams on the roof all the while fighting off alien attacks from across the road. The aliens manage to enter the building and overpower one of the fire teams. Meanwhile the legionnaire team on the hill manage to hold off repeated attacks from the road. The security team leave Building 2 with some more colonists, and lead them to the scared colonists milling about by the Wooded Park. Meanwhile the media team decide to go and investigate the munching sounds coming from Building 1.

Turn 4

The legionnaire manage to rescue their comrades in Building 3, killing the last alien inside the building before it could eat anyone else.  The security team move on to the Farm Buildings picking up more colonists while the patrol vehicle moves off to cover the first group of colonists heading for the starport.

The King and Queen aliens attempt to move from behind the Reactor to the hill adjacent to it, The King (or Queen) gets past without the overwatch team on the roof of Building 3 reacting, but the Queen (or King) following on gets caught in the open and killed. 

The aliens in Building 1 attempt to charge the journalists but fail, confused by their approach ("I see you're being eaten alive by these hideous aliens, tell me, how do you feel?"). The media team come to their senses eventually and move away into Building 2.

Turn 5

 The evacuation continues, Building 3 becoming a strongpoint covering the road junctions and the front of the reactor complex with multiple teams on overwatch on the roof. The aliens follow the media team to Building 2 and finally overcome their camera shyness and eat them. They also finish off the colonists hiding in the Wooded Park.

Turn 6

More attacks on Building 3 are halted by concentrated fire from the overwatch teams. The security team moves on from the Farm Buildings. There are escorting so many colonists now I make a ruling that they need to make a Troop Quality roll if they wish to move quicker than walking (which they then fail to make until the last turn).

Turn 7

One of the aliens attacking Building 3 seems unstoppable and managed to gain entrance killing one of the legionnaires before finally being defeated.

Turn 8

The rabble continues their slow progression across the table, the patrol vehicle taking up position on the hill overlooking the junction where it engages, with limited success, a group of alien reinforcements moving towards the culvert in an attempt to cut off the colonists retreat.

Turn 9

The colonists reach the stream and take their time crossing. The vehicle moves to cover the culvert. The aliens hiding in the culvert decide not to charge (luckily as the patrol vehicle cannot fire on the same turn it moved).
Turn 10

The legionnaires fall back from Building 3 closely pursued by the aliens. The patrol vehicle goes on overwatch covering the culvert and the colonists finally manage to get off table.

Turn 11

The legionnaires continue to fall back, pursued by the aliens who are now lacking conviction as they realise that most of their food source has got away.

Turn 12

One of the final actions as a legionnaire team holds off alien charges as they get trapped behind the alien forces as the rest of the detachment moves to the departure point.


The game was an overwhelming victory for the humans in terms of points with most of the colonists getting away along with the majority of the security and legionnaire forces.

The aliens were hampered by poor reinforcement rolls, both in the numbers arriving (although by the end of the game they had recovered most of their losses) and in the location they arrived. They also failed to charge a number of times against the odds.

The vehicle failed to make much of an impression in terms of casualties but may have put off the aliens from attacking.

I've got some issues with the rules - the reaction system works well, but the morale system doesn't seem to work particularly well. Also the rules suffer from being hard to read, not helped by me mis-remembering where on the page tables were as I flipped through the book over and over (I was remembering where the table was in the Force on Force rule book instead). The index too needs some work, every page where the subject is mentioned is listed along with the main one where the rules are - the main page reference should be emboldened to help find the rules you are looking for.


  1. As the hapless Alien Overbrain I was hampered by my initial deployment. I placed most of my guys too far back. They should have been moving forward in a solid inhuman wave attack rather than attacking piecemeal. They way they might have had a chance to overwhelm the security forces.

    I also didn't realise that I could have embedded my big alien monsters in squads making them more useful.

    I had some piss-poor die rolling, but then so did my opponents, so I guess it all balanced out in the end.

    Finally, when we were tidying away the terrain, I found a forlorn squad of aliens forgotten in one of the rearmost buildings. I'd put them there because I thought that the security forces would be sweeping through the complex looking for survivors (that'll teach me to pay more attention to the mission objectives).

    All in all, it was a fun game, though hampered by the rules. I'd like another go at it, now I've got a clearer understanding the mission and the vagaries of the rules.

  2. great battle report. We just played a similar scenario ourselves today using the Tomorrow's War rules. Our Aliens weren't anywhere near as effective, but it was still a good, fun game.

  3. How have I managed ti miss this blog?!!!!!

  4. Er, that's TO miss this blog......