Darth Maul’s Rockin’ New Years Eve Celebration

A long shot of the table early in the game.

The gaming group to which I belong, the Harford Area Weekly Kriegspielers (HAWKs), celebrated New Years Eve as we have done every New Year since 2009.  A large contingent came to my house for a couple of miniatures games, a toast to the new year, and an early culmination of events.  This year, the first game used the recently-released Star Wars supplement to Combat Patrol(TM): WWII.  The Imperial forces attacked a Rebel installation from two directions.  The Imperial goal was to cause as much destruction as possible.  This included destroying moisture vaporators, buildings, and gun emplacements.  They couldn’t merely blow them up from a distance, they had to put someone next to them with a thermal detonator.

Another long shot of the table.

The Rebels forces included a platoon with a heavy weapon squad, some Wookies, some Sand People, and some heroes (Han, Leia, Luke, and Chewbacca).  The Imperial forces included two infantry platoons, to AT-STs, an AT-AT, and some speeders.  The AT-AT was GM controlled (by me) and had the mission of driving up to the installation, dropping some “commandos” inside, and then blowing up the pallets of ammunition in the middle of the installation.

A view of the Rebel installation.

At first it looked like the Imperial forces would easily get the upper hand as the Rebel gun turrets got some early out of ammunition results, and the HE effect of the medium blaster cannons on the AT-ST’s negating much of the Rebel cover in the first line of defense.

Stormtroopers advance with the support of their speeders.

Some of Duncan’s Rebel infantry fired on the speeder carrying a Stormtrooper squad, stunning a couple of troopers and forcing them to dismount.  This meant that they now had a long walk across the open to get to the installation.

The HE fire is taking its toll on the Rebels.
The AT-AT advances! It’s objective was to get close to the installation and release some “commandos” who were inside. Then it was supposed to try to blow up the ammunition on the pallets in the center of the installation.

I controlled the AT-AT as a sort of play balance.  If the Imperial forces were getting spanked, I could unleash the heavy blaster cannons.  (After the game, I realized that the black base on the AT-AT comes off with four screws, so it won’t spoil the aesthetics in future games.)  The Rebels had a few anti-tank type weapons: the four turrets and some shoulder-fired rocket launchers.  They fired several shots at the AT-AT and the AT-STs, but they were unable to score penetrating hits.

Rebels defending a gun turret. Apparently it has been firing at the Stormtroopers so much that its barrel is beginning to bend.

In Combat Patrol(TM), when units are on high ground like these Rebels, they get the “foxhole” cover protection.  In Combat Patrol, when a figure scores a hit on an area occupied by troops, you draw the next card from the Action Deck to determine which figure was hit and how severely.  This card also has some cover icons.  If the icon appears for the cover occupied by the randomly determined figure, the figure is stunned instead of wounded or incapacitated.  This made defending the high, rocky cliffs very effective for the Rebels.

A view of the interior of the installation.

The Imperial forces never got very close to the installation, so many of the defenders were maneuvered out of the scintillation to delay the enemy.

The Sand People made it difficult for some of the Stormtroopers to advance as they were caught in the open between the cliff and the Wookies defending the gray bunker.

After a couple of turns, Chris’ Sand People aligned with the Rebels, revealed themselves atop the rocky cliff and began sniping at Geoff’s Stormtroopers, slowing them down.  In this picture you can see a gray bunker.  The bunker and the gun turret were both objectives worth blowing up, but they were defended by Wookies.  Although the Wookies had few blasters, they acquitted themselves well in hand-to-hand combat with the Stormtroopers.

The Rebel defense of the town.
Sand People unexpectedly arrive in support of the Rebels.
The fight around the Rebel building intensifies.

Stormtroopers worked their way around a building to assault the Rebels.  The Rebel’s on the hillsides really slowed down this group of Stormtroopers, making it difficult for them to achieve their objectives.

Stormtroopers and Captain Palmer (a.k.a. Phasma) advance toward the Rebel gun turrets.

Both sides seemed to have a good time.  In the end, it was a Rebel Victory.  They still held five of their moisture vaporators, and the Rebels held seven.  Also, one for he Sith supporting the Stormtroopers and Captain Palmer (Phasma) were knocked out, while none of the Rebel heroes were Incapacitated.

Rebels defending a moisture vaporator begin to take HE fire from the AT-STs.
Stormtroopers advance!
Stormtroopers advance around a building. (Building by Imperial Terrain)

A high point in the game was when Princess Leia ran out and planted a thermal detonator on the leg of my AT-AT.  It blew up, receiving a penetrating hit, that caused the leg to collapse and the machine to topple.  The “commandos” escaped, but they were stunned, and Leia missed being crushed by the falling AT-AT.  Then the commandos who were supposed to have been dropped inside the installation fought against rebels between the fallen AT-AT and the installation gateway.

Stormtrooper AT-AT taken down by Princess Leia and a thermal detonator.

It was a very fun game that involved 16 players.  The game ran from 1600-2030 with a short break for dinner.  I think it is a testament to the rules that you can play a game this large and still finish in a reasonable amount of time.