Sunday 5 February 2023

This is Not a Test - What's in the Box?

Mission nine for the Flores Minor Ranger Corps saw them still in the Northern Green Zone, attempting to recover rumoured salvageables from a long-abandoned settlement. Across from them, Andrew's mutants had regrouped and were there for the same salvage. Four counters, marked 2, 3, 4 and 5, were placed along the centre line of the table. The values were hidden from both players, only to be revealed at the end. It cost 1AP to pick up each box or crate of salvage. At the end of the game the players would find out the value of their salvage, getting that many victory points, and 5x the value of recovered barter script. 

The table consisted of lots of hard cover ruins and crates, soft cover (but not line of sight blocking) patches of rough scrub, and line of sight blocking trees. On the FMRC side (bottom of the photo), Hotshot was on the hill on the left, Sarge in the scrub in the middle, and Doc and Heavy on the hill on the right. Most of the crew were in two loose groups either side of Sarge, but Point II used tunnels discovered after the last mission to deploy forward, in the lee of one of the buildings on the right and within arm's reach of the right-most loot box.

And then the blood bath began. Right off the bat, the muties seized the initiative. A mutant rookie - Mr Shootyman - turned his mini-gun on Hotshot with the result that Hotshot earned an appearance fee for his briefest ever showing. Shortly after, another lucky shot - let's call it luck to soften the blow - took out Buckshot.

On the opposite flank, the mutant slave girl/psychic infiltrate the mind of Point (in cover and sooo close to the first booty box), and having rolled a 1 for his morale, he promptly ran away. Doc and Heavy eyed up Harold - one of the veteran mutants - out in the open and decided it was time for revenge.

With what has become predictable results. Heavy missed, and Doc jammed. Not sure whether it's time to sell his sniper rifle, or bin my dice...

In the centre, the two mutant rookies, Grom and Mr Shootyman had taken up position behind cover, but in full view of Sarge, sitting in the scrub. Mr Shootyman took a hit and made no further appearances in the skirmish. I wasn't even fast enough to take his photo before he was removed from the table.

Back over on the left, having lost both Hotshot and Buckshot, the two tame hillfolk went on the offensive, only to be headed off by Beep-boop and Mr Horny. in the ensuing hustle of gun shots and melee, only two remained standing. The mighty Frygga, lady-hillfolk and fearsome warrior with a pointy stick managed to survive all attacks and take down both mutant and depend-o'-bot to grab the treasure. Ogg then dashed off to the right where the nearest loot box was being approached by the mutant's dogbomination.

I'll admit Ogg didn't last long in that melee, but he occupied a space in the action long enough for Pup, the FMRC's K9 to secure a second box of goodies. The kills were mounting up across the table. Demo II was dropped, as was Snake-Eyes III. The psychic put visions of dread into Doc's head which compelled him to critically fail his morale roll too and flee the table, while Heavy simply failed his (repeatedly) leading to him running up and down a hill as he scarpered, regained his courage and then scarpering again.

Trench, the mutant with a grenade launcher, ran out of ammo and decided to run after Frygga, but the lady legged it like hillfolk carrying a box of loot. In the centre, the mutant dog, still snarling over the motionless body of Ogg, became a target for everyone in line of sight (including the newly recruited FMRC BT29.2 depend-o'-bot).

The dogbomination finally fell to his wounds, and with that the mutants bottled. The FMRC remained in play to grab all the loot, winning the scenario and bagging 70BS along the way. However, the game was a very near run thing with both warbands losing 8 of their 12 members over the course of the fight. 

The Mutants got off to a great start and I had some miserable rolls, but I do suspect the terrain favoured my hyper-shooty crew - unintentionally of course. There was loads of cover, but much of it was low enough to reveal the upper third of the hulking mutants allowing the various crack shots among the FMRC to fire away at them. When we engage in shanty towns and urban industrial complexes, the various alleyways provide a lot more line-of-sight blocking cover.

In the post-match phase, Andrew lost two dead and his depend-o-bot captured. His mutants are now down to just three original members and a bunch of rookies or near rookies. 

Among the FMRC, Ogg survived but was pretty banged up. Demo II died of wounds received. A new K9 handler will be recruited and given the callsign Demo III in his honour. Point discovered a mysterious creeping plant but when he went to take samples, he was luck to escape with his life! 

After selling the captured Beep-boop for scrap, the FMRC earned enough BS to pay upkeep, recruit Demo III, and a further officer and outrider. They are now riding what I can only assume is the crest of a wave, fielding 14 members with a warband rating of 928!


  1. Mark from Thailand6 February 2023 at 08:04

    Good to see the FMRC is having some success at last. I hope the Hillfolj will - some ti e soon - report back for PDEE duty.

    1. Indeed, I hope Ogg and Frygga will get back into the wilderness sometime soon. After all, they have a tasty new woolly rhino to hunt!