I have been settling in to my new gaming room rather nicely over the past couple of weeks and it’s given me the opportunity to spend some time playing more games, including a fair amount of solo play and games designing.
I have been adapting the basic rules ideas from Richard Borg’s excellent Commands & Colors series (specifically Memoir ’44), combined with the dice mechanics from Space Crusade to create a Warhammer 40,000 version, allowing me to get more use out of my Epic 40k minis.
Battle for Macharius Bridge
The eastern agri-plantations, a million square hectares of rural plains dotted with farmsteads and small imperial settlements who managed the production of triffidicus plant oil, became a major muster point for the ork invaders.
An armour detachment of Iron Eagles space marines conducted a lighting counter-attack at the vital crossing point of the Macharius bridge, hoping to bottle up the alien masses.
This scenario was generated randomly using the Fog of War and terrain-generation rules from the Epic 40,000 Battles book.
The result was the Macharius bridge battlefield, pitching a full ork cult of speed army attempting cross the Grendoilor river whilst a slightly depleted space marine armour detachment with titan support, sought to hold the western bank.
Birds-eye view of the battlefield and initial deployments. On the left and right flanks, there are Take & Hold objectives and on the bridge a Cleanse objective (these are the space marine objectives). The orks must reduce the space marines to 50% of their starting strength.
Using the Commands & Colours system, I set a command card limit for each army. The orks had a hand of 5 cards and the space marines received a hand of 6 cards. Each army took a turn to play a command card and then act upon the orders given.
I took command of the space marines and used a solo playing aid, created by someone on board game geek website, for the ork orders. Three cards were chosen for the orks in ascending order of first, second and third best options and then a dice roll decided which command card was enacted.
I took some photos during the battle to illustrate the basic movement and combat mechanics.
The first ork command card was a probe in the centre, allowing two units in the centre section to activate. They made a full move forward to secure the bridge.
In response, the space marines gave an assault right order, allowing all the units on the right flank to deploy on one of their take and hold objectives.
Later on, the space marines issued orders for three units on the right flank. They moved forward and prepared to open fire on the ork nobs holding the administratum building overlooking the Macharius bridge.
Warhound titan ‘Kessler’ of the legio Hydra Cordatiss opened fire, rolling 6 heavy weapons dice. The total score was 6. The basic armour of the ork nobs was 2 + the building bonus of 2, giving a total of 4. The result was 2 wounds, wiping-out the ork unit (as they had already taken some casualties from the land speeder and terminator fire)
The battle progressed with major success for the space marines who deployed on their Take & Hold objectives on either flank, whilst warhound titan ‘Kessler’ sprinted across the bridge and cleared their Cleanse objective of green skins.
For their part, the orks struggled to deploy their greater numbers to make an attack on the bridge. The tributary river and reservoir effectively split the ork deployment and created a choke point, which caused them issues with manoeuvring for the whole battle.
All in all it was a very interesting and fun game, there were several tweaks to unit stats throughout (including reducing the strength for a warhound titan, as ‘Kessler‘ went on to run amok amongst the ork deployment zone)
I am thinking of using the ‘cross-fire’ rules from The Great War version created by the Plastic Soldier Company, which allows units to combine their shooting dice. This will hopefully allow weaker units to ‘gang-up’ on stronger ones.