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Subject: Rafik vs Wasp - tutorial game rss

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David Murray
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Rafik vs Wasp – training game.

I have recently downloaded and printed out the tutorial kit for AV:T and have been learning the game system. In short I have really enjoyed the process and play moves along at a brisk pace. So far the process has been pretty smooth, the game is really far easier to play than it can initially appear. After working through the tutorials and enjoying the game enough to order a copy I have been playing a few practice games using the tutorial rules.

Here is a battle report using the two ships from the tutorial kit - the Wasp and the Rafik (I will be using the Mk2 - corrected Mk1).

The tutorial kit has (understandably) only part of the complete game rules, but there is still plenty to be getting on with and it is a great way of trying out the game. As I am using the tutorial ruleset some of the full game rules are unavailable. I used only beam weapons. The damage allocation rules are not included so in the replay the first to cause 50 points of internal damage won the duel. The tutorial rules have limited vertical thrust rules and so each ship was limited to a maximum angle of 30 degrees from the plane of the map. Rolls are also not available.

The Rafik and the Wasp began stationary 25 hexes apart, level with the map plane. Below is the Wasp looking across to the Rafik.



What you are about to read was great fun to play and is a demonstration on how not to pilot a ship in AV:T! At various points in the battle I could almost feel the contempt from my bridge crew as I fumbled around the galaxy, they must have wondered how on earth did I get to command a spaceship?

The battle begun with the Wasp holding position waiting to see which way the Rafik turned. The Rafik turned to its left and angled up 30 degrees and engaged full thrust. The Wasp responded in the next segment, turned, and adjusted its angle towards the Rafik's probable future position and engaged full thrust.

Below is the view from the Wasp over towards the Rafik. The Rafik had begun to climb from the map plane. The Wasp waited to see which way the Rafik turned before following and so has not yet left the plane of the map. No thrust breaks yet but vectors were beginning to build...



Below the SSD’s at end of turn 1 (I noticed I had forgotten to circle the symbols that were below the amber band on the AVID – i.e. the rear of both ships).



Turn 2 and both ships kept the engines burning throughout the turn. Both ships were still rising and despite the Wasp having the more powerful drive it looked as though the Rafik had done enough to keep out of the Wasp's kill zone (at least for now). The ships looked set to for a spiral battle. The closest point during the turn was at range 14, a little too far for both the Wasp’s 4SRLS and the Rafik’s 3MRLS.



Turn 3. The use of the end of turn markers is really helpful in understanding what is going on. (note as both ships were climbing I removed excess height markers and kept their relative positions the same).



The biggest threat to both ships was a large alien that prowled around the area…



By impulse 4 the Rafik realized it was not going to get a closer shot this turn and fired four of its 3MRLS at the Wasp. The lasers hit just to the port of the nose, armor and soak rolls reduced damage taken to just 4 points.

Below shows the point when the fire was taken.



By turn 3 both ships had spun round and engaged engines to change their vectors. At the end of the turn the Rafik turned on its reactors to begin recharging its batteries.

Positions at the end of turn 3 (I removed excess height markers again and maintained relative height difference).



Turn 4 and both ships had engaged engines and were correcting vectors for another fly past. The Rafik took a shot in impulse 3 just as it was about to move outside range 13. The Rafik powered 4 of its MRLS but this time hit against the weaker skin of the Wasp's port armor. Poor soak rolls saw the Wasp take another 12 internals (total internals now 16). The Rafik now only had 1 battery remaining but was quickly moving away from the Wasp.

Below are the positions when the shot was taken.



End of turn 4. The Wasp, closest in the picture, had nearly cancelled out its vectors and was turning to pursue the Rafik. The Rafik had slowed but was still moving quite rapidly away, needing time to recharge its depleted batteries.



End of turn 5. Both ships have cancelled out their thrust which was moving them apart and have begun to close on each other again.

View from the Wasp with the Rafik in the distance.



End of turn 6. Both ships were now closing on each other. The Rafik’s batteries were back up to 22 so its reactors were switched off. The Rafik looks like it can yet again keep out of the kill range of the Wasp. The Wasp is having great difficulty getting the Rafik into range - the Wasp had burnt nearly half of its limited supply of fuel and had yet to take a shot…

The Wasp and its SSD.



Turn 7. Five impulses in and the Rafik gracefully drifted into range 10 of the Wasp. The Wasp was pivoting and running its engines on maximum trying to get closer to the Rafik, however in doing so has exposed its weaker starboard armor. The Rafik unloaded all its 3MRLS at the out of position Wasp. Armor and soak rolls reduce the damage taken to 25. This puts the total damage taken by the Wasp to 51 and so the Wasp extended its external radiators and surrendered...

Below positions when the final shot was taken…
The Wasp caught in an ill timed pivot.



The Rafik with its enemy centerlined.



Summary

A good learning experience. The game took about 2 hours to play which I guess would shorten with experience. A plus point is that at no time did I need to consult the rules – the game really is that intuitive. As soon as the full game arrives I will try this again using the damage rules and kinetic weapons. I am a little unsure how to play the Wasp, it has awesome fire power but needs to close to use it effectively.

A 1-1 battle does not really give the 3D engine of the game enough opportunities to show what it can do - next I will try a 2-1 battle and really get some crazy vectors going...
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M St
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Nice AAR, and a cute alien.
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Ethan McKinney
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On play time, keep in mind that each game turn is divided into eight segments, each with maneuvering decisions, movement, firing, power generation, and so forth. Seven turns in two hours works out to about 17 minutes per turn, or a little over two minutes per segment! That's pretty fast, especially given that this was a first game. Your mileage may vary.

The red and green "tilt blocks" that David is using are paper fold-ups that are included in the tutorial download for print-and-play. They look a lot better than I thought! (I've only printed them in grayscale for testing.)

I believe that David used the Rafik Mk. 1, which has the higher thrust. No other difference.

While the Rafik is at "point blank" at range 10, the Wasp needs to be at range 6 for maximum firepower. On the other hand, the Wasp can do about twice as much damage as the Rafik can at that range. That much damage makes the Rafik's limited armor pretty much irrelevant.

The Wasp's tactics tend toward the brute force: keep you nose pointed at the enemy and thrust to spiral in, not too fast, not too slow.

By turn 3, both ships were going really fast: too fast for most purposes.


(David, go through your post and edit the image tags so that they read "[ImageID=XXXXXXX original]." That way they show up at a useful size, instead of being postage stamps. The default BGG behavior isn't very useful ...

What did you use for the altitude blocks?
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David Murray
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Thanks Marcus and Ethan.

Ethan, I am learning as I go along, in my previous game the Rafik did not move quickly enough and so the Wasp just zeroed in and zapped it. The speed that was built was a sort of standoff as once the Rafik started burning its engines the Wasp followed trying to close the gap. More subtle vector tactics are required, although it worked out OK for the more agile Rafik in the end (you are right the Rafik was the mk1. I keep thinking that newer is better).

Curious to know if experienced players favour one of these ships in a duel - as my understanding of the game increases this looks like a tough fight for the Wasp - of course it is highly likely (and probable) I am missing something significant and off course when the real game arrives there will be other options.

The blocks are called 'multilink' in the UK, they are used to help teach young children to count - I have a box full of them. Not sure if I will continue to use them but for now they help me visualise the battle more easily.

Thanks for the tip on the images - I will go back and do that
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David Murray
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As for the speed of play I was not using anything tricky like kinetic weapons (I am very interested in reading about those...). The tutorials were great and writing vectors and targeting beams weapons is really straightforward. I did not have to allocate damage. Of the eight impulses each turn only a couple really needed changes to happen, when there is just acceleration and movement thinks zip along. I could have taken longer working out my tactics but at the moment I am in 'flying by the seat of my pants' mode.
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David Murray
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Thanks Ethan - looks much better.
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Ethan McKinney
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TrotskyTrotsky wrote:
The tutorial rules have limited vertical thrust rules and so each ship was limited to a maximum angle of 30 degrees from the plane of the map. Rolls are also not available.


Quick explanation: vertical (straight up or down) gets thrust exactly as if the ship was horizontal, but puts the points in the + or - box. Pretty obvious in play.

60 degree elevation just reverses the horizontal and vertical thrust that you'd get at 30 degrees. For example, it the thrust table shows 2 "horizontal" and 1 "vertical" thrust for a segment, you take 1 in your horizontal facing and 2 in + or -.

The explanation in the rules is slightly more detailed, but the fundamentals are consistent.
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David Murray
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Thanks for the explanation Ethan - I sort of guessed as much - hopefully the full game should be with me in a day or two. Can't wait to get to grips with the rail gun rules...
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Keiron
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Would I be correct in thinking that the super black map sheet does not come in the boxed game?
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Bwian, just
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Kappa_ap wrote:
Would I be correct in thinking that the super black map sheet does not come in the boxed game?

Correct. In fact, none of the components shown come in the boxed game: the OP printed out the tutorial materials and used them. That said, the maps and elevation blocks were the only things that looked very different than the official components. The released tilt blocks are made of plastic, rather than paper, but TrotskyTrotsky made the paper ones look pretty good.
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David Murray
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Thanks Wehwease.

The map is an old SFB Megahex map.
 
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Keiron
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I'm on the fence about Attack Vector: Tactical (AVT); I have Birds of Prey (BOP) and while it doesn't come out as much as I'd like it is one of favourite games.

AVT seems to have enough differences to provide a different gaming experience, and perhaps might complement BOP in some ways, but the sky blue maps bother me. If Ad Astra had one in the box like the ones in your photos I'd possibly place an order tomorrow.

Can you buy the SFB map anywhere i.e. separate from SFB itself?

Also, where did you order your copy of AVT from David? if you don't mind me asking?
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David Murray
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Hi Keiron, not sure the Megahex is still available, might find a copy on eBay. I am quite interested in Deluxe Space maps by ADB (the SFB company). Those are in panels and hard mounted so you can move the panels as the battle develops.

If you are not sure about the game then try out the free tutorial it should give you a good feel for the game...

I couldn't find a Europeon shop with the game in stock so ordered mine from Noble Knight games in the US - had to pay £12 customs though. Shame you don't live closer I could show you the game.

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Kris Miller
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Check out Chessex at chessex.com

They might still sell the white hex on black mats. I have one I prefer for space combat boardgames. (I just wish they had made a 4'x8' "MegaMat" in that color.

Cheers,
Kris
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Ken Burnside
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We sell a felt map with 1.5" hexes and the A-F rosette in the center.
 
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Dave Terhune
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This is a blatant example of frivolous geek gold spending.
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I spent 100 geek gold and all I got was this lousy overtext.
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SpaceGamer wrote:
We sell a felt map with 1.5" hexes and the A-F rosette in the center.

I have one. I can confirm that it's very pretty.
 
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