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SoN 04 - Lost Battalion 04 AAR

Ville E
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Time to fight again!
Enter the Darkness
As the Rangers fight their way through every inch of the cave, they discover the prisoners and the captured Ariane Dubois. Will they have enough time and guts to rescue them?

The mission for Rangers: Run through the cave, get any unit to the prison at the end of the opposite side. Do it in 8 rounds.
Extra: Discover the secret passage behind the waterfall (reward: Rangers can use secret passage in scenario 9).

The mission for Deep Ones: Don't let the Rangers win. Again.
Extra: Don't let the Rangers find the secret entrance (reward: Rangers cannot use the passage in scenario 9).

Note: Points are 180/205 (depending if Bob survived scenario 1) for the Rangers and 155/200 for D.O. (depending if you use and count the extra scout tile). Considering the Rangers have to break on through to the other side, I would maybe prefer a little bit more advantage to the Rangers. Off the top of my head this scenario seems great for the scouts. They could really use their move and fire to keep the Rangers mobile. Maybe if I play again someday I'll try that! Please give your thoughts on how your game went and what you think about the balance! Also, I refuse to just sit and block the narrow corridors with D.O. I make subpar moves to keep the game interesting.
Also, I really dropped the ball reading the scenario. I didn't let the Rangers start inside the cave even though they won the last scenario.

No picture for the deployment. I was really excited to try the shaman Th'Pyeh, so I deployed him with scouts and hunters.

Turn 1:
"Forward men!", Carter yelled at the cave entrance. There was an eerie silence emanating from the cave. You could almost hear the unholy heart of the cave beating it's sinister rhythm. Recon team took the lead with Father Ted behind them. Doc and Bob held the rear with the fire team. Inside the cave Deep Ones shuffled into positions, hunters taking the waterway shortcut, the scouts and the shaman taking the tunnel.

The first turn was purely running around for both sides. I deployed the idol and had an extra card next turn (getting a total of 3 fire on the moves in 3 turns!).

Turn 2:
"Keep moving.", Carter's soft command echoed in the tunnels. Not yelling anymore in the oppressive atmosphere of the cave. "Movement sir, 50 feet or so straight ahead. Unidentified target." reported the recon team as they took a sharp turn and jogged down the tunnel trying to find the prisoners. Ordering to fire at will, Carter glanced behind him to check on his team. He raised his gun, being pretty sure he glimpsed something in the cave entrance moving towards them.
Sure enough, the large Deep One they'd seen before rose from the water. Axe in hand and murder in his eyes, it lunged at Bob. "You again.", mumbled Bob, biting on his cigar. Sidestepping the axe easily, he planted a boot right between the Deep One's legs. He didn't know if they had cojones, but he sure hoped they did. Carter let his gun do the talking, driving the beast back into the river where it came from. He heard shots from outside the cave; the fire team was locked in combat with the enemy. They would have to take care of themselves, he thought grimly. Everyone knew the risks involved in a rescue mission.
Inside the cave, the recon team saw heads peaking around the corners of the cave walls. Nothing they could really shoot at, but the enemy was only a dozen feet away!

Oh boy! I brought Garth and hunters from behind the Rangers, thinking they would have to slow down to take care of the scary melee units. Well, starting with Garth losing to Bob in cc and the hunters being humiliated by the fire team outside, my plan didn't work so great. I'm pretty sure I was at +2 against Bobby, but damn my sister's dice are HOT. I guess this is the fate of the bad guys
I still don't want to just bog down the game, but I have to be careful with the rest of my troops!

From gallery of CthulhuStoleXmas
Starting the 3rd turn.

Turn 3:
"Hold your ground men, for God is with us!" bellowed Father Ted, seeing the recon team assaulted by the unholy fish-men. Bolstered by his faith, the recon team managed to keep the fish-men at bay. Shooting their rifles and counter charging, they managed to kill all but few who ran away. Taking a moment to admire Father Ted's bravery who advanced past them, the recon team didn't see that the enemy had swam behind them and learned their mistake when they felt knives and spears driving into their backs. Bob, who was running towards them also took a nick from a spear thrown his way. Father Ted started to call his God for reassurance, but found himself vomiting water instead. What is this foul sorcery? Instead of fear, Ted felt anger.

Woo, I think I won a 1st or 2nd assault here when I got rid of the recon team. I'm not sure if the hunters managed to kill the fire team outside the cave at this point or was it later, since that mattered very little. I had great fun spamming the Drowning on the Rangers. Totally not worth it, but fun! Oh well, time to retreat!

From gallery of CthulhuStoleXmas
Start of turn 4.

Turn 4:
Things had turned, not a whole lot of fish-men to be seen. Ted charged forward, fueled by his righterous anger. He branded the forehead of the fish-priest with his Elder Sign. He would have preferred a cross, but he doubted the effect would be as great. Forcing the vile creature to retreat, Ted heard it hiss orders while scampering away, indicating there was still more fighting to come.

Lost the assault to Ted. Retreated and used a card which let me move again in the supply phase, getting far away from those Elder Signs. Yuck! I actually made a mistake, I didn't notice Th'Pyeh's move drops from 3 to 2 when he is wounded, and accidetally moved a total 6 instead of 4. Not a huge mistake but mistake anyway. Brought the scouts from the rivers to try and salvage the situation. We had agreed beforehand that we'd check the game state at turn 4 and depending on who was doing better we'd decide if I'd bring them in or not. I definitely needed them!

From gallery of CthulhuStoleXmas
Mid-round of turn 5. Things are so heated I forgot to took a picture (and several others).
Turn 5 and 6:
"Drive them back to hell where they came from!", bellowed Ted while charging zealously towards the fish-men. With hatred in his heart, he overzealously ran after the shaman, leaving his friends way back behind him. Realizing his mistake when he faced a handful of spear-armed fish-men alone. Too late to turn back, he charged them brandishing his Elder Sign high. Even though they flinched and kept back, he couldn't make them rout or manage to do any damage. The advantage of suprise gone, Ted caught a spear in the shoulder and was jumped by fish-man, tearing into his chest. He heard the clamor of gunshots just before losing consciousness.
Carter darted behind Ted, forcing the nearby fish-men out of hiding. Bob smiled, finally having something to shoot in this damned dark stinkhole. He let loose his pistols and obliterated all fish-men he could see. The shaman, seeing Ted go down, gathered his courage and advanced once more. Being so focused on hexing his enemies he forgot to secure the prisoners.

To be honest, the details are a bit fuzzy here. I lost a turn here somewhere, managing to hold for one turn. In the end what happened was I lost 2 of the 3 scouts, Rangers lost Ted (making him the second casualty I got).

Turn 7 & 8:
"Flank around, I'll distract them.", yelled Carter to the support team. He and Doc kept the Deep Ones busy, shooting and feinting retreat. The ploy worked, hooting and hissing the fish-men were taken by bloodlust and tried to throw spears at the closest enemy. Leaving the support team to sneak in behind the pillar to free the prisoners.

After turn 7 I noticed my mistake. Being so eager to stop Carter and Doc, I totally left a way for the support team to move in from the rear and take the objective. I had theoretical chance to slow them enough with Drowning, but the Rangers had the special command card, which allowed them to move before I took my first action. Well played and deserved victory for the Rangers (especially since they started outside the cave :|
As a consolation prize, I managed to keep the Rangers away from the waterfall.


There's some funkiness, probably due to Compendium / original rules. The biggest thing was Father Ted having the Elder Signs. Mythos Fighter doesn't stack anymore (I think it did when they made the scenario).
-Because FT has Mythos Fighter +2 and the Elder Sign gives MF +2, the result is RAW that you have to spend 2 to get +4. Or rather all 3 to get +6 (since you don't do anything with just 1). If I play again, I have to change it to something else. Grenades could be useful in this scenario. We played it so it just stacked, so one token gave +2. It was pretty brutal when he assaulted, but since there's only 3 I thought it was fine. IMO the Faith power was more of a nuisance.

Another thing is the scenario layout. Theorycrafting it would seem that the best move for D.O. would be to park their units in a line behind a corner. Forcing the Rangers to form an assault train. Carter being the best unit out of the box (+4 assault) and being on par with the hunters, it seems pretty risky just assaulting. Father Ted could break that defence with his Elder Sign, but only probably only once automatically (especially if you don't let MF stack).

All in all it was surprisingly interesting scenario, especially if you try to be proactive with the D.O. and not passively sit back.

The next one is played already. Just have to take the time to write it up (hopefully with a less fuzzy memory!)...
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Subscribe sub options Fri Apr 30, 2021 2:17 pm
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