January 29th saw me take on Neal in our first game of Hybrid. Neither of us had played the game before, so it was a slow start as we worked through the nuances of the (poorly translated) rules.
First off, Neal decided to play the Alchemists of Dirz, so I ended up playing the Griffins. For Neal’s 5 figures (maximum) and 6 ranks, he chose the Aberration (Rank 3), two Clones (Rank 1), and two Pests of Flesh (Rank 0, 2 of which counts as a Rank 1). For the Griffins’ 5 figures (maximum) and 5 ranks, I chose a Seneschal (Rank 2), plus three Purifiers (Rank 1). We played the initial scenario which was just a simple last one standing wins game with no objectives. There were 4 event counters placed on map and included one trap.
The game started with the Griffins moving from their start area and making their way down the main corridor towards the Dirz lab. The Alchemists, in the mean time, lead the charge to repel the invaders by sending the Pests first, followed by the Clones, and the Aberration bringing up the rear. Both sides made contact in the second round, with the Seneschal seeing a Pest of Flesh and firing upon it, but the shot missed. The Pest activated and promptly charged the Seneschal and sacrificed itself and inflicting one point of damage to the Seneschal. A Purifier moved up and took a shot at a Clone, but that shot missed as well. The second Pest of Flesh charged the Seneschal and again sacrificed itself to inflict the second hit on the Seneschal (who was down to 2 of his original 4 hit points). A second Purifier moved up and took a shot at a Clone and successfully inflicted a hit. The Clone fired back but missed. The last Purifier moved up to support the Seneschal and occupied an Event counter, activating it. The counter was the lone trap, but the Purifier avoided injury by making his Natural Roll. The Aberration took the last activation for the round, advanced upon the Seneschal and promptly knocked him out of the game with a single hit.
In the next two rounds, the two Purifiers concentrated their fire on the Aberration, taking him out of the contest while the Clones engaged the third Purifier taking him out of the game. With the gaming being down to two on two, Neal played a Birth Tank Army Card and put a new Pest of Flesh into play, which was promptly directed to wound a Purifier. He then concentrated his two Clones on one wounded Purifier while the other tried to assist by firing into the melee. In desperation, the wounded Purifier ran to a small room to activate the third event counter, but the card provided no benefit for the current situation and the pursuing Clones finished the job. Outnumbered 2 to 1 and having poor luck on the rolls, the last Purifier succumbed to the Clones and the Alchemists succeeded in defending their lab.
Some quick comments about the game (i.e. lessons learned):
1. The rules state that Event Cards labeled “Interruption” must be played immediately upon drawing them, but the one Event card I drew that was “Interruption” was actually written up as to be played in response to an action. I wonder if the translation in the book is incorrect.
2. I should have used the Seneschal in a support role and not lead with him. He was, by far, my strongest character and I probably lost the game as a result of losing him so quickly, especially considering one of the firing modes allows you to shoot into a melee without a lot of difficulty.
3. The lab tile has a visual depiction of floor tiles which looks good, but makes it hard to tell when the game spaces are….
4. The Action Cards, Event Cards, and Army Cards didn’t seem to have a huge impact on the game.
I’d rate the game an 8 at this point.
You did pretty well, if you try it again give it a go with 6 ranks per side it's a fairer match. The Seneschal can make good use of his combined attacks in melee so it's not a bad idea him leading from the front. Skilled fire also helps versus Pests.
If you have any problems check out the English forum on the official Rackham website.
There are some mistakes in the later scenarios that can mess up gameplay so do check out the errata.