Race Against Time… and the Odds

Last weekend it was time for another game of Wandering Star! We decided to play the ‘Race Against Time’ scenario, where five objectives are on the table and winner is whoever has achieved more of them after eight turns. I set up the table to represent a wilderness, with lots of difficult terrain and hills and woods blocking line of sight. This, as you will see, saved the day for me.

When we rolled for force composition, I was very happy to finally get a squad of RAPTS, my special forces. The figures are Chuhuac from Loud Ninja Games and every nerd’s secret dream come true – who doesn’t wish for dinosaurs with lasers!

Unfortunately, my happy grin faded fast when K. rolled two sixes in a row, according her a Kh’Lrion tank (from the Darkest Star Games Kickstarter), the most powerful vehicle in our game. As I didn’t have any anti-tank-weapons, I had no means whatsoever to stop that beast! At least I had some luck when we rolled for special events and a group of locals joined my force.

Set up.
Set up.

Set up saw the locals on my far left flank, keen to defend their settlement from the evil TCO forces, while my RAPTS were on my far right. I had the idea of using them to get to the objective on the far right as fast as possible and then try to stop K. getting there. My right flank Quar had the same plan, while my Auxies and the left Quar were very keen on keeping as far away from that nasty tank as possible.

Don't mess with us!
Don’t mess with us!

K. advanced with her Brunt and some Pasiphaeans on the right flank, covered by the tank. I kept out of its LOS and managed to get to both of the right objectives. After securing them, I headed back into cover and went on ‘Overwatch’, intent on preventing K. from achieving them.

A motley crew of locals rush forward.
A motley crew of locals rushes forward.

Meanwhile, on my left flank, my troops slowly advanced from cover to cover. The locals made a racket and fired wildly with their Blaster Pistols without hitting anything. At all. For the whole game. So much for enthusiastic volunteers. Undisturbed, the Pasiphaeans secured the objective located at the settlement.

Quar defend the objective.
Quar defend the objective.

On my right flank, K.’s Pasiphaeans were challenging my Quar, while her Brunt were charging right at the RAPTS. To my disappointment, the RAPTS’s fire was utterly inefficient – no doubt they were shocked being charged by gigantic anthropomorphic rhinos. The Brunt had a good run this game, dealing with the RAPTS without any problems and even succeeding in an intelligence test and securing one objective.

Brunt having a bright day.
Brunt having a bright day.

Up until now, I had managed to deny K.’s tank any target. She kept her vehicle rather stationary, covering her left flank and one objective that I really wanted to get… so I sent in the Quar. The poor brave Quar moseyed over to the strange alien flower and got into the LOS of the tanks cannon.

Quar heroics, futile again.
Quar heroics, futile again.

They stood no change against the barrage and I will spare you an image of the aftermath…

The game’s eight turns were now coming to an end. I had managed to secure 3 objectives, but K., who had rolled over my right flank, had 4, so she was the winner!

This was a very instructive game. First, it proved how important terrain set up can be: The terrain was very difficult for vehicles, offering only limited lines of sight and having many areas that were impassable to the tank. K. could have used it a bit more mobile, but there weren’t that many places she could have gone. And having it stationary and covering the flower made sure I wouldn’t get this objective. Secondly, the game also showed that, at least with the right terrain, even set ups that look extremely unbalanced on paper work well and are still exciting the play. Being up against the most powerful vehicle in the game without any chance of harming it was definitely an interesting challenge. My guys did ok, if I say so myself, even if I was disappointed by the RAPTS’s performance – next time, I expect the dinos to make mincemeat out of those puny mammals!

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