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Assault on Hoth: The Empire Strikes Back» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Baycon 2009: Part I (Quest for an Avatar) rss

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Peter Clinch
United Kingdom
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OK - so here’s the deal, being open & honest I’d like to buy an Avatar.
So I thought I would write a session/review of the 31 games I played between 16th-19th April ...otherwise known as BayCon 2009 (no, not the one in USA or Canada). I know it been a long time comin', but here goes...

For those who have never been; for a Geek- it’s like a chocoholic being given the keys to Willy Wonka’s!! The numbers of games played, the variety and the friendly people make it an awesome convention. For 4 days the organisers and participants take over the Exeter Court Hotel, there are games being played in all the rooms and even in the bar. And I nearly forgot to mention the excellent games library with over hundreds of games, many old some new, a lot of classics and some you’ve never heard of- hats off to the committee.

Anyway here goes the chain of reports..
Having arrived at lunch time on Thurs, our colleagues (who were keen enough to stay Weeds night) were already in the middle of their 3rd game [Castle for All Seasons]. So, Fatboy & I decided we needed to get underway. Having a boot full of games, I thought it would be easier to grab one from the huge library (especially as we’d help carry it in). On top of a box was Assault on Hoth- 2 player, simple to learn, done deal!
Giving Fatboy the choice, he chose Imperial . So I was Luke and his trusty Rebels. The given is driven by 2 decks. The Action deck- which determines which units will move and/or fire when, and the Events deck- which throws in curve balls plus acts as the ‘timer’.

For the Imperial commander there are; Walkers (AT-AT’s), Snowtroopers and AT-ST’s and for the Rebels Snowspeeders, Infantry and Laser turrets. Each has a firepower value (# of dice rolled) and a defence rating (# of hits required to damage or kill). The dice are cute, with 2 light sabre symbols, 2 Darth Vader’s and 2 blanks (giving both players 33% chance equally). The Walker & Snowspeeders can take more than 1 hit, and so each has a data display along his board edge. The aim for the Imperials is to blow up the base before the 5th Transport escapes- these are shuffled into the event deck and one card is revealed each turn, so it builds up the tension.
All units have the same movement points (i.e. 5) but this is modified by terrain. The clever bit is that the faster moving units have more cards in the action deck therefore more movement points in total- clever huh?
So the Walkers started their seemingly unstoppable advance towards the base. Walkers carry the Snowtroopers into battle, are the hardest to hit and have the most damage. The rebels do have a handy network of tunnels allowing them to move around the battlefield quickly, deploying where required- accept the lasers which are static. Best think about where you want these before setting up, I should have put mine in the rough to increase their toughness – doh!
The Walkers were choosing to move rather than fire when give the chance, in order to advance more rapidly. What didn’t help the Rebels was the fact that the first Event card out was another Walker!! Luckily the next was a ‘hotshot pilot’ rather than give the bonus to Luke (who is secretly piloting a Speeder) I gave it the #3- thinking he was likely to become a target.
Having lost a few snow plodders (light & heavy inf.) my speeders were getting into position, for a harpoon. This neat manoeuvre brings down a Walker if successful, though it’s not that easy. You have to be in the right place at the right time. Anyway I did bring one down with the crew on board (woo-hoo!). But the Imperials had progressed up to the Power Grid and destroyed it, making it easier to destroy the bases defence.
Snowtroopers bailed out of the remaining Walkers and a pitched battle ensued. Luckily we managed to kill most of the Imperial units and our own losses were replaced by Reinforcements. With only 3 transports away, and 2 Walkers left (and one was crippled) one of them managed to get within point blank range- and blew the base up!!! It was never like that in the film ;-(
All in all a fun game, simple to learn and quick to play. The theme and atmosphere matched the film very well. Congrats to Fatboy 1-nil

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