Saturday, 28 June 2014

Rouge Trader 28mm - Shootout at Sourbridge

Another day, another Imperial proclamation.

Mhorrghan, Captain of the House Guard cleared his throat ready to address the crowd that clustered around the foot of the raised platform he and his detachment occupied. Weather-wise it was a typical day down at the bottom of the arcology near the great iron bridge that spanned the long-lost, flooded lower levels of Hive Termitius - the ancient Sourbridge. A continual drizzle fell from the rusty heights above and splattered brown tidemarks on Mhorrghan's olive green greatcoat. The stench of the The Sourbridge remained eternal - a mix of diesel fumes, fecal matter and balti pie.

This won't go down well, thought Mhorrghan to himself. By Decree of the House of Huriatat taxes were up on Soylent (all flavours/colours), Lho-Sticks, and brown ale, and the curfew was being extended to sectors 13 through 17 following a spate of thrill-kills and happy slapping, and the vandalising of the 200 metre tall bronze statue of Count Huriatat himself - an incident that had been seen a giant erect penis painted on the statue's forehead in day-glo yellow paint.

"Citizen-serfs of Termitius Hive. By Decree of the House of-"

There was one crack and sizzle, the distinctive sound of a lasgun being fired.

Mhorrghan had just enough time to recognise the las blast before the blinding white pain erupted in his right hip and he was flung to the cold, hard surface of the rusty floorplates. There was screaming from below, the sound of panicked flight and then more of the crack-sizzle as the men of the detachment fired wildly in all directions.

As he slipped into unconsciousness he heard the sound of a trooper desperately radioing on the Commvox for urgent backup.


Jhonndil Injer lowered the lasgun and cursed himself. That old knife wound in his hand playing up again - spasmed and jostled the barrel as he pulled the trigger. The hated Guard Captain was now out of sight between an length of pig iron walling.

He turned his grotesquely over-muscled body towards the waiting gangers of the Typtun Taliban hive-gang.

"Get him!" he spat. "Don't let the Housedogs recover him. We'll have his decapitation live on all vid-channels before the day is out!"

Another of our "play to make a story" Rouge Trader games. Phil as GM and chief toy-provider. The terrain is all from Mantic's Deadzone range which makes for good Necromunda proxy stuff. The forces of House Huriatat are Copplestone "Neo Sovs" and the Typtun Taliban are old Necromunda "Goliaths". You'll notice a monochrome theme to this week's AAR (or as it is sometimes known "grey").

This might be a satire upon the limited horizons and limited palette of the typical hive-dweller of of the bleak, grimdark future where there is only war, it might be a deliberate stylistic choice and nod towards German expressionist cinema of the 1930s, a veiled dig at the hordes of modern 40K players who think that a single coat of Chaos Black spraypaint constitutes "painted" figures, or might it be that Jason only had access to a black-and-white laser printer when printing out the street tiles to go on his baseboard and that Phil's plastic terrain is only at the primer spraycan stage.

The upended figure is Captain Mhorrghan "bleeding out" having been shot in the tangley. House troops panicking.

My command - that's just six gangers with assorted firearms and no armour, and a man with Heavy Stubber. We are not in list-picking mode here.

Note how pasty-skinned they are. This is because while not busy Rouge Trading, they run a secret underground shop selling Magic cards somewhere in an isolated, out of the way area of the hive. In keeping with the hipster nature of the area they neither advertise nor even bother with a sign pointing to their basement location. You've probably never heard of it. (In-jokes? Yes, we have them).

Finney's lot on the right flank. By their distinctive orange skin these can be identified as the members of the Typtun Taliban who live in Jo E'essecks hab-block - the Umpa-Lumpa chapterhouse.

House Huritat troops rushing to the rescue. Note that in the full spirit of 1987 vintage Rouge Trader, the headless figure of Dicky chose to attend the proceedings in a retro Birmingham City top. He later stabbed a Luton Town supporter on the Intercity train home.

This tunnel over the railway line (some form of coaling or watering station I guess. What do Dark Millennium trains run on anyway? Probably the crystallised essence of the crushed dreams of the quintillions of Imperial subjects, or just the rendered-down bodyfat of ginger babies drowned in a bucket at birth) which later provided a lot of cover for my gangers in Wild West "richochet" style.

Aerial shot from the passing Inquisitorial spyplane, I Know What You Did Last Wednesday (When You Thought No-one Was Watching You Dirty Fecker). Dicky's troops are using the alleyway as a field of fire, Jason's troops are hugging the chest-height ferrocrete walls and Mhorrghan is still bleeding everywhere.

Dicky had a Heavy Stubber. It fired one burst. It didn't wound so he didn't get to use the Following Fire rule which basically states that if you wound you can fire again at same target or another within 4" and keep going until you miss or fail to wound. And then he got shot and died.

Aunt Sally, gang "heavy". I had a Heavy Stubber. It fired one burst. It didn't hit so I didn't get to use the Following Fire rule which basically states that if you wound you can fire again at same target or another within 4" and keep going until you miss or fail to wound. And then he got shot and died.

Finney gets up on a rooftop across the street from the position where House Huriatat troops are defending the fallen officer. Finney later attempted to jump off into the street but this shit the bed as he rolled some 1s and two of his steroid-abusers died on the way down. I think either their shinbones couldn't take the impact of all that muscle landing on them and splintered when they hit the pavement, or their disco tits overbalanced them such that they landed head-first.

Shit. I hadn't noticed this. This remarkable LOS was being laughed about in the gangers turn and ended up being one of the few shots throughout the game that wasn't hampered by cover. I could have fired back but chose not to as I hadn't noticed it of my own accord and was only aware of it because it caused much amusement. So I roleplayed "my character wouldn't know that" and green mohawk chap fired at somebody else and didn't shoot back until he'd been shot at and missed.


Here he is drawing a bead on that Muscle Mary. Who is he anyway? Trooper Lee? Peart? Lifeson? Emerson? Lake? Palmer? Wakeman? Brock? Fripp? Gilmour? Waters? Anderson? Who cares, I fucking hate prog anyway.

Mid-game overview. My lads are in cover on the left side of the board and starting to whittle down the house troops that were originally heading towards the rooftop where the injured officer was.

Finney's heroic descent to ground level via the lamppost isn't going too well. See above.

Probably the closest in game equivalent to Jhonndil Injer's vantage point from the Sourbridge Book Depository (also functions as a combined incinerator and memory hole). House troops ready to defend the fallen Captain and await back-up.

It didn't end that well for them. In fact hidden from view in this shot is a Juve with a laspistol who calmly plugged three house troops on three consecutive turns from a range of about 4" and didn't receive a single scratch from lasgun fire coming back at it. (+2 for laspistol fire up to 8" probably helped here).

After most people were dead (helped by ignoring the unit coherency rules and ignoring morale) there were only two players left in the game and I declined to pursue the retreating troops. The survivors were dragging the wounded man at half rate and managed to retreat from view around a corner. It might have been possible to outflank them but with three players now out of stuff to command I felt that it didn't justify dragging out the end of the game.

And here's the thing that amazed me. We got about two hours gaming (i.e. not long enough to outstay it's welcome) with less than 30 figures on the board for five players, and with only two (crap) support weapons and everyone else with popguns and the house troops wearing paper mache bulletproof vests.

1 comment:

  1. Those printout street plans look the business, I'll have to give them a try.