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Star Trek: Attack Wing» Forums » Variants

Subject: Three Round Mini-Campaigns- The Mizar Campaign rss

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William Boykin
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I'm a great believer in the premise that all naval games, whatever the genre, only truly shine in the context of a campaign. Only in gaming do you see captains willing to risk their commands to kill one more enemy ship, even if it means the loss of the last ship in the sector. As Alfred Mahan argued in 'The Influence of Sea Power Upon History', the ability to maintain even a 'force in being' is necessary if facing a superior opponent. Therefore, no naval commander, even in the Star Trek universe, is likely to want to 'risk everything' in order to win one scenario.

What this means is that I think that naval games, and Star Trek: Attack Wing in specific, are better if the games that are played are done in the context of a campaign- three or more linked scenarios where losing ships early on matters. I experimented with this a couple of weeks ago with the following format, and figured that I'd share with the rest of you.

The Mizar Campaign- Campaign Rules

Both sides (in this case, Federation vs. Klingons) receive 250 total points to build up their fleets. The first scenario is to be fought at 75 points, the second scenario at 125, and the last one at 200 points- or whatever one has left. Captains assigned to ship cannot be moved to different ships between battles, but otherwise, secondary weapons, crew cards and tech upgrades can be shifted around.

When a ship is destroyed in any battle, a 'saving throw' is made to see if the ship's captain and crew upgrades survives. This is done by throwing ONE attack die for the entire Captain and crew complement, and comparing the result to the scenario special rules listed. If they die, the cards are removed from play, along with the ship model. If they live, they are available to be reassigned in later scenarios. A captain whose ship is destroyed can replace a lower skilled captain if that side choses- but once reassigned, can not be shifted again unless replaced by yet another 'higher ranked' officer. Secondary weapon upgrade cards are never removed from the game, even if their ships were destroyed, but tech upgrades are removed permanently if their ships are lost. (The idea is that secondary weapons are much more common pieces of equipment, while tech upgrades are kit which haven't become 'standard issue'- and the loss of a prototype means that in the course of the campaign, they couldn't be replaced.)

Finally, in order to encourage players to consider 'breaking contact' and running for home, 'friendly table edges' are considered to not just be the entire side that they start on, but also out to the 'halfway line' along the sides of the battlefield. In other words, leave a table edge on your side of the table, you're in or heading towards friendly space. Any other table edge is enemy space- leaving along those edges means that ship is considered to be lost.


Scenario One: Civil War on Mizar.
Mizar is a planet in the Neutral Zone, with two competing political factions favoring alliance with either the Federation or the Klingon Empire. Recent political strife has resulted in the outbreak of civil war, and both the Federation and the Klingon Empire have decided to intervene with weapons and other support.

Both players have 10 turns in order to transport boarding parties and armaments to the planet surface in order to help their 'side' in the ongoing conflict. Both sides build their squadron to a 75 point limit. An M class planet is placed in the center of the board. Both players have available the action-

ACTION: If the ship is within range 1 or 2 of the planet, the ship may lower shields and place one mission token on the planet.

If a ship was destroyed while within range 1 or 2 of the planet, the player could roll one attack die- if it came up battlestations, a hit, or a crit, the crew was able to get to the planet safely, and from there, back to their side. Otherwise, they were all dead. If the ship was NOT within range 1 or 2 of the planet, they would die on the roll of a blank or a battlestation.

Victory:
If one side has more mission tokens on the planet than their opponent at the end of turn 10, that side wins a Minor Victory.

If one side destroyed more points in ships than the other side, that side won a Minor Victory. Note, points counted do not include tech, secondary weapons, crew or captains.

If one side accomplishes both of these results by turn 10, they win a Major Victory. If both sides win a Minor Victory, the result is a Draw.

If the scenario is a draw, then refight scenario 1, but at 125 points. Otherwise, go to scenario 2

Scenario 2: Ambush!

With the outbreak of hostilities due to the Mizar Incident, the losing faction is now fighting a rearguard action in order to prevent the intruding force from further entering Federation/Klingon space. The defending player has thus decided to launch an ambush against the enemy forces attempting to interdict their supply lines in an isolated asteroid field.

This scenario is played at 125 points. The winner of scenario 1 is the Intruder player; the loser, the Defender.

The defender keeps off to the side 1 Planet token (a large Ceres style asteroid), and 4 Objective tokens flipped to the Asteroid side.

Both sides set up as per the normal scenario rules, but the defender gets to place all of the terrain on their side of the board AFTER both sides finished placing all ships on the table. The terrain can be placed anywhere out to the middle of the table, but no part of any terrain piece can extend across the middle line.

Since this battle is in Defender's space, any ship destroyed may save their captain and crew complement by rolling 1 attack die, and on any result save blank that crew and captain make it home. Due to the Intruder operating in enemy space, any ship destroyed saves their captain and crew only on a roll of a hit or crit- battlestation or blank means all hands are lost.

Victory-
The Intruder player wins a minor victory if they have at least 1 ship on the enemy half of the table at the end of Turn 10.

The Defending player wins a minor victory if there are NO Intruder ships on their half of the table.

The player who destroys the most value of enemy ships (again, ship values only- not crew, captain or upgrades) wins a Minor victory.

If both players win a Minor Victory, the result is a draw. If a player can win both Minor conditions, the result is a Major victory.

If the result is a draw, or the Defender wins a Minor or Major Victory, go to Scenario Three.

If the Intruder wins a Minor or Major victory, go to scenario Four.

Scenario Three: The Second Battle of Mizar

Having driven the Enemy forces back into the neutral zone, both sides make a push to secure Mizar before peace talks fix the borders. In a desperate attempt to create a new 'status quo' for the negotiation table, both sides move to secure Mizar space.

Set up an M class planet in the center of the table. This scenario is fought at 200 points- or whatever they have left.

Crews and Captains are lost as per scenario 1.

Victory:
Whichever side has the most amount of ships in Mizar orbit (defined as being within range 1 or 2) by the end of turn 10, wins a minor victory. Note, this is not points, but SHIPS.

Whichever side destroys the most amount of points of ships wins a minor victory, as per the previous scenarios.

Finally, if one side can completely destroy ALL of the enemy ships (note, leaving the table on a friendly side is not considered to be destroyed, while leaving on an enemy table edge IS), that side wins a Decisive victory.

Scenario 4: Raid on enemy starbase.

As the defending power retreats, they regroup and make a stand at a key world bristling with defenses. The Intruding player has a chance to, in one stroke, change the balance of power along the Neutral Zone!

The scenario is fought at 200 points- or whatever is left. The defender, if they do not have enough ships, may buy instead either the Space Station from the NegVahr scenario card, or the OWP's. However, the points for these are taken out of their 200 point budget.

The M class planet is placed in the center of the Defender's half of the table. The station is placed anywhere in orbit around the planet as the defender sees fit, so long as it is MORE than range one and less than range 2. The OWP's are placed as per the scenario card.

Victory:
The Intruder wins a Minor Victory if they are able to destroy any orbiting Stations or all of the OWP's by the end of Turn 10.

The side with the most amount of ships in order around the planet (within range 2) wins a Minor Victory.

If either side is able to completely destroy the entire enemy force, they win a Decisive Victory. Note, leaving along a friendly edge does not count as destroyed, while leaving along an enemy edge does.

Campaign Victory:

For every minor victory: 1pt.
For every majory victory: 2pts.
For every Decisive victory: 4 pts.

Subtract both sides total victory points from each other.

1-2 point difference: Minor Victory.
3-4 point difference: Major Victory.
5+ points: Decisive Victory.

I ran this even with 6 people, playing different commands over one day. Playing all three scenarios took about 4-5 hours, including explaining the rules for some new people between games. Overall, I liked how it played, for it gave some interesting decisions, especially early on, about pulling ships and commanders off the table in order to have them later on for the decisive battles at the end.

For the record, the game I ran went like this:

Scenario 1: Fed Minor Victory
Scenario 2: Klingon Major Victory
Scenario 3: Fed Major Victory

Result was 3 Fed points - 2 Klingon points = Federation Minor victory.

Please, feel free to comment and tell your own stories. I think that there is a lot of room more of this type of 'mini-campaign', and I'd like to see other people's ideas or scenarios.

Darilian

Edited to clean up some things.
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Read the rulebook, plan for all contingencies, and…read the rulebook again.
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Re: Three Round Mini-Campaigns
Great variant idea, Dar'. I love the idea that decisions and results from earlier battles influence the later ones. This makes forces built around a particular ship, tech, or character more precarious. Since if the lynch-pin holding the build is lost, it hurts even more. It should lead to more well-rounded builds where the loss of a ship or two can be balanced out with stuff waiting in reserve.

And why should the fun stop the Mizar campaign? Why not link up three or four of the scenarios we have (and will be getting) into min-campaigns of their own?
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Big Dogg Rulzz
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Sorry Darillian but I have to poke a few holes in your scenarios, not that they wouldn't make great games but not truly living up to the Star Trek Lore.

The first problem I have is Scenario 1 The Mizer's Civil War. The Mizar people have started a civil war about joining the Federation or the Klingon Empire. Fine . The Klingon's of course would run supplies and lend troops to support their side in the war but the Federations Prime Directive would prevent any direct support to the Mizerions except for maybe humanitarian supplies. The most they could do militarily would be to blockade the plant and prevent any outside influence that way. Even if the Federation and Klingon's are at war with each other I still doubt the Federation would get involved with a civil war on a unaligned world.

If you think my idea is full of crap just say so and I'll stop other wise I have some ideas that might help.

Thanks, TJ
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Allen Gould
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I like the idea - I think I'll have to dig out the old Star Fleet Battles campaigns and see if they can be adapted. (Use Nor in place of starbases?)
 
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Dan Lenson
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I love it, and I'm already thinking of trying it with my friends.

One question though: Cards that need to be discarded to use (e.g. TNG O'Brien), are they then gone for the rest of the campaign, or does this simply represent how these cards are "once per game" use only?
 
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William Boykin
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danlenson wrote:
I love it, and I'm already thinking of trying it with my friends.

One question though: Cards that need to be discarded to use (e.g. TNG O'Brien), are they then gone for the rest of the campaign, or does this simply represent how these cards are "once per game" use only?


I would rule that 'discard after playing' cards would regenerate between battles.

Darilian
 
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