Battlefleet Gothic; Tabletop Mission Profiles.

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.

Battles.

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
  • Convoy.

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.

  • Exterminatus!
  • Surprise Attack
  • Planetary Attack
  • Escalating Engagement
  • Fleet Engagement
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Cruiser Clash

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 Bait

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.

The Raiders

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)

Surprise Attack

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.

Blockade Run

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.)

The Battles!

Convoy

Convoy is also fairly different to what those of you who never played tabletop would be familiar. (Ok, completely different, only the fact transports are in it is the same.)

In my personal experience, it was also the absolutely least played mission type outside of a campaign. And you'll see why in a second. You see.

Convoy has a metric f**kload of custom rules of its own. The defenders forces consist of 100 points of ships per 2 transports which may be deployed in a maximum of 1 squadron per pair of transports in the convoy.

With me? Ok. That's the easy part.

The Attackers... are generated randomly. The attacker would roll 1d3 rolls of a 1d6, plus one per extra pair of transport ships. (So if there were 8 transports and the 1d3 result was a 3, the attacker would roll 6d6.)

The possibilities?
One deadfall torpedo or attack craft cluster.
Two deadfall torpedo or attack craft clusters.
Three deadfall torpedo or attack craft clusters.
A squadron of escort ships worth up to 100 points.
A squadron of escort ships worth up to 150 points.
One capital ship worth up to 200 points.

(So assuming the basic scenario, if the attacker rolled a 3 on the d3 and 3 sixes, the defender, with his 100 points, would be facing 600 points worth of attacker. Of course, worst case scenario for the attacker is that he ends up with only three deadfall torpedoes or attack craft clusters, so no ships at all.)

Going lengthwise the attacker would then place unidentified contact markers alone the long edges of the the board up to 45cm from it. (With a minimum of 30m apart from each other.) Then the defender rolls to see which short edge they come in from and have to make their way to the other side to escape...

And THEN there is the complex rules governing revealing the contact markers and so on.

As absurd as BFG:A's convoy missions can be, at least they weren't this mess.

Planetary Assault

This mission is, in my opinion, vastly more enjoyable than BFG:A's version. BFG:A's just feels like a little orbital artillery mission, and it is.

In Planetary assault, the fleets were of equal size, with an extra d6x10 points of planetary defences for every 500 points of their fleet. While the attacker got to take two free transports for every 500 points of his fleet.

Towards one table edge the planet would be placed, and the defenders set up either in patrol, or in high orbit within the planets gravity. For each defending ship or squadron on patrol a dice would be rolled, on a 1-3 the attacker would place the squadron, on a 4-6 the defender would. (The defender always decides the facing of the ships)

The defender would then set up their fleet within 15cm of the short table edge furthest from the planet.

There was also a second table called the "low orbit" table. On this table, one short edge represented the surface. The attackers job was to get as much as he could within 30cm of the planet surface table edge for as long as possible. During which he would bombard with ships and drop troops with transports. If the attacker managed to get 10 points of strikes on the surface (bombardment or troop drops) they automatically won.

Escalating Engagement

This was one of the most fun game modes, each fleet, built to the same points limit, was split up into 5 divisions. At the start of the battle, each player has only one division on the tabletop. The others arrive later as reinforcements. But the division marker you choose is chosen randomly.

(As such 'evenly split' divisions were best if possible.)

At the end of the turn, a player would take a contact marker and put it on the board edge at least 60cm from any enemy marker. And if allied ships were within 30cm of the board edge, the marker had to be placed near them.

At the beginning of a turn the player could attempt to bring in reinforcements, rolling for their contact markers already in place. Slow ships would take longer to arrive and a markers speed is based on its slowest ship.

The battle lasts until either one fleet disengages or is destroyed.

Escalating Engagements were always a great deal of fun, in part because of the uncertainty behind the mission. Your main divisions Gothic class cruiser is undergunned for taking on the enemy Hades class Heavy Cruiser and he just pulled a Grand Cruiser on the board. Are you going to get the roll you need to bring on your division you put an Emperor class Battleship and Mars class Battlecruiser in to save the day, or can you just write off that ship?

Exterminatus

Exterminatus is similar to Planetary Assault in the same way that a bus is similar to a road train. If either hits you it's gonna hurt, but the road train isn't going to leave much of anything afterwards.

One thing to note is that in an Exterminatus! mission, the baseline for it is already a thousand points, and you will have to pick a ship cruiser sized or larger and sacrifice their prow weaponry in exchange for an Armageddon Weapon which can only be used against the planet (aka: Low orbit board.)

Instead of the 'patrol' rules from Planetary Assault, instead the defending fleet is ready, mostly, in his case, for every 500 points in the defenders fleet they are on patrol and not present on the board at all

The attackers job is to get their Exterminator (or exterminators, or active Blackstone) within 45cm of the planet on the low orbit table then roll a 4+ to... well...
Do this

Meanwhile the defenders job is explicitly to kill the Exterminator ships (or Blackstone) as reinforcements arrive to help do that. Hopefully before it is too late.

Fleet Engagement

This mission is basically similar to what Cruiser Clash is now with one real change. The players would pick a choice of deployment formation (Sphere, Wedge or Cross) and their choices would be compared to a chart which would determine the deployment zone layout and even facing of ships at the start. (A result for "B" deployment will result in both fleets being arrayed broadside to one another going in opposite directions. A result for "C" deployment meanwhile would have one side going 'down' the board through the centre while the opposition was going the other way, but flanking on both sides.)

So. Basically cruiser clash with fancy deployment zones.

And that is the Battles from the core rulebook. I'm sure most people would agree with me in saying "f&^k the tabletop version of convoy with a rusty chainsword coated in ork drool regurgitated up by a particularly nasty nurgling."

In my opinion however, the rest of the missions (bar Fleet Engagement which we sort of already have) are all doable to some degree and would make a nice bit of variety.

@kadaeux Thanks for compiling all of that. I've never read any of the TT rules or missions. I look forward to you finishing the list of missions 😜. I noticed they are all variants of 40k missions from various editions, so I understand what is going on in each.

I hope Tindalos comes up with a way, or should I say puts effort into giving us a good mix of Deployment types. Deployment types are in my opinion at the core of what can make each mission feel unique.

They desperately need someone intimate with BFG TT missions to advise them on varying deployments. The same deployment for each of the missions in BFGA1 helped make the game feel repetitive.

last edited by Bellumvinco

@bellumvinco said in Battlefleet Gothic; Tabletop Mission Profiles.:

@kadaeux Thanks for compiling all of that. I've never read any of the TT rules or missions. I look forward to you finishing the list of missions 😜. I noticed they are all variants of 40k missions from various editions, so I understood what was going on in each.

I hope Tindalos comes up with a way, or should I say puts effort into giving us a good mix of Deployment types. Deployment types are at the core of what can make each mission feel unique.

They desperately need someone intimate with BFG TT missions to advise them on varying deployments. The same deployment for each of the missions in BFGA1 helped make the game feel repetitive.

Thanks Bellumvinco, and I agree. I will at a later point get screenshots of the deployment profiles from the rules and edit them into the profiles above. And while I will include all the mission types I can find from my files, some of them will basically be edits of existing ones.

(Eg: In Armada, the first two Ork scenarios are modified Convoy and The Bait scenarios.)

I WILL also include the Scenario notes for various races outside of the Core rulebook where presented.

For example:

"Convoy; Tyranids don't have convoys, being a void-dwelling race. They make good attackers though."

The book also notes that they are never the attackers in Exterminatus, though they often end up as the defenders. Additionally, while I don't remember any of the Necron Specifics, due to the point limit on cruiser clash they could not, in fact, field any cruisers (the scythe is 275).

@nemesor-xanxas said in Battlefleet Gothic; Tabletop Mission Profiles.:

The book also notes that they are never the attackers in Exterminatus, though they often end up as the defenders. Additionally, while I don't remember any of the Necron Specifics, due to the point limit on cruiser clash they could not, in fact, field any cruisers (the scythe is 275).

Incorrect. (well you're right on the points cost :p ) the Necrons could participate in Cruiser Clash as Light Cruisers are in fact still cruisers, and the Shroud is only 155 points :p

But the core rulebook eldar could not play Cruiser Clash as their fleets lacked light cruisers, and the core books cruisers for Eldar cost 210 and 250 points each. Though once Armada came out they could play it due to the Aurora and Solaris.

However, the Dark Eldar never could, only having one type of Cruiser that had a base-line cost of 210 points.

@kadaeux Well, I wasn't really counting CL. Speaking of the Druhkari, did they ever get any actual support for their fleets? Everyone else got a ship or two from the magazine but I never saw any for them.

@nemesor-xanxas said in Battlefleet Gothic; Tabletop Mission Profiles.:

@kadaeux Well, I wasn't really counting CL. Speaking of the Druhkari, did they ever get any actual support for their fleets? Everyone else got a ship or two from the magazine but I never saw any for them.

Nope nothing. They got their Torture Cruiser and an escort. Even Forgeworld never bothered with them. 😞

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