Several times the topic of missions has come up, and thanks to my expansive knowledge (aka: PDF files with the details) I thought maybe I'd compile a list of the mission types from the tabletop, and discuss what people think, should Tindalos include them, or at least some form of them. (As some of them are more specific scenarios.)
And so, first of all I'll begin with the core rulebook scenarios. Of which there were ten. The Scenarios were broken up into 2 classifications.
Raids, as the name might clue one in were smaller scale battles, often with reasonably restricted possibilities. The following Raids were in the core rulebook.
- Cruiser Clash
- The Bait
- The Raiders
- Blockade Run
Battles were larger affairs, frequently with much larger fleets. They were, predictably, for longer or more involved games. The following Battles were in the core rulebook.
- Surprise Attack
- Planetary Attack
- Escalating Engagement
- Fleet Engagement
This is the mission type most familiar to us all in basic concept. In truth it really has no massive differences to the mission we all know. The only significant difference was that, Cruiser Clash had a very specific limitation. No ship could be over 185 points, and each players fleet consisted of between one and four cruisers with both sides having the same amount.
No other ship type was permitted, and the point limitation (again, core rulebook) meant that Carriers and Nova Cannons were off the board with the sole exception of the Orks with the Terror Ship.
The players chose between attacker and defender, rolled for it, however you like.
*The Pursuing Forces (Attacker) selected up to 500 points of ships.
*The Pursued Forces (Defender) selected one ship or squadron worth 250 points initially, with up to 500 points of reinforcements.
Already you can see what will become a recurring theme in these analyses. The Scenarios are frequently and deliberately asymmetrical engagements.
In this case, the Pursued player would set up their initial ship or squadron in the centre of the board facing one of the 'short edges' with the pursuing player deploying their fleet more than 60cm behind it. Reinforcements arrive from the opposite table edge.
During this match, the goal of the pursuer is basically to try and kill the bait, and reinforcements. The defender meanwhile could deploy their entire reinforcement fleet on turn one. However they would gain bonuses to where their ships could deploy by waiting. (The longer they waited, the further along the long-edge they could deploy their reinforcements.)
The game would continue until one fleet disengaged or is destroyed.
Another asymmetrical scenario. The players would both agree on a points limit for the raid (note, 750 is the maximum Raids were optimised for.) The Defender would be permitted to spend up to the total agreed upon, while the attacker could spend up to half that.
The 'gimmick' in this is deployment. The defender must set up their forces at least 30cm from any table edge and each ship or squadron had to be deployed at least 20cm from one another with all ships and squadrons facing the same table edge.
Meanwhile, on turn one, the entire attackign fleet moves onto the table from any edge and place the attacker chooses, for the first d6 turns the defender would suffer a -1 leadership penalty to represent their reduced state of alert.
The Raiders is also characterised by a time limit of either eight turns or until one fleet disengages, whichever happens first.
This mission is one I feel would be a strong and interesting contender for inclusion into Battlefleet Gothic Armada 2. The asymmetrical nature of it is bought at the cost of an surprised defender and the short nature of the mission means that an attacker may be able to withdraw with most of their forces intact. (HA! Fat Chance)
Both players fleets are bought to an equal points value, with the defender getting extra points to spend on planetary defences. The defender would pick 1D3 of ships or squadrons to be on full alert. The alert defenders could be placed anywhere at least 30cm from a table edge. The rest of the defending fleet is still on standby. Standby ships and squadrons had to be deployed within 15cm of the planet the mission was based around. These ships had to be abeam to the planet (broadside for you planet humpers)
The attackers fleet moves on to the table edge of their choice in the first turn, getting the jump. Ships or squadrons on standby cannot move, fire or launch ordnance. They can brace and repair critical damage, turrets and shields work normally.
But to go on alert status (and join the defence) they have to first pass a leadership test.
Again, the games lasts until one fleet disengages or is destroyed.
Though it'd be interesting and fun, I don't see this sort of mission making it into the game, as the tabletop game included planets at a smaller scale and included limited orbital mechanics for things like a slingshot.
This is a great departure from the 'blockade run' we know. The attacker, once more, gets only half the fleet points of the defender. However, the defenders fleet is forced to deploy in three distinct quadrants. They may face any direction in it, and be placed anywhere within it so long as its at least 60cm from the attackers table edge.
The attacker then deploys within 15cm of their own table edge. Their job, while they can try the killy route, their job is entirely to get their ships off of the other table edge. And doing so is the best way to deny the defenders victory points. This mission is also characterised by a heavy time limit, the defender has only six turns to stop the enemy, who also has only six turns to effect their escape.
As you can see, the basic raids are all pretty individualised and have their own draws and fails. For example, an Ork defender against an Eldar player in Blockade run is going to be a futile effort for the Ork whose only effective options are to either hope the Eldar player is an idiot or for the sun to be on their own board edge, forcing the Eldar players to 'tack' across the map instead of booming and zooming across it.
(If the sun was on one of the side edges of the table the Ork player may as well just conceed there and then.)