News from the Front #2 – Firestorm Armada, 1200pts Dindrenzi versus Terrans

Hi folks, time for another Firestorm Armada battle report, mostly because I’ve already posted this on the Spartan Games forums – this time with a few pictures.

If you remember from my first FSA report I needed to give my friend, Ray, a rematch. We’ve had a game since then but it was contentious as to who had the better win. Unfortunately I didn’t take notes so I’ve not got anything to write-up, but the point of contention was that I was trouncing him and I took a risk with a waypoint objective for some more shooting. Ray saw the opening, took it and blocked my ships with his, fulfilling the scenario victory conditions. He says it was a bad way to win and that I have the moral victory, but I know he won fair and square.

But onto this particular rematch. Ray and I wanted to try different things with out fleets so we decided upon a straight up 1200pt shoot-em-up. He had changed his fleet around to include an Aegis squadron and ran his battlecruisers as a pair. I, however, wanted to try the Rense System Navy allies and took a squadron of very expensive destroyers.

The random rolls for the battlefield resulted in the board being split down the middle width with 2 asteroid fields and a third on Ray’s left side. Winning the setup roll-off, Ray had successfully baited me into focusing on his blob-fest on the empty side of the board. This being his Aegis squadron, cruisers, battlecruisers, battleships and frigates. Facing off against this I had 2 heavy cruiser squadrons and my new destroyers. Everything else (his light cruisers and frigates, my battleship and frigates) went on the denser side of the board.

News from the Front #2 – Firestorm Armada, 1200pts Dindrenzi versus Terrans
A friend took this nice view from the position of my battleship.
News from the Front #2 – Firestorm Armada, 1200pts Dindrenzi versus Terrans
The blob versus heavy cruisers. The keen eyed among you will see that 1/3 of my models are technically light cruisers, however I love the model so much I use them as my normal cruisers… and I also don’t own 6 heavy cruisers… one day soon though!

Turn 1’s balance tipped slightly in my favour as I was managing to score some good critical hits across Ray’s fleet and managed to destroy a light cruiser and an Aegis. This particular event put his Aegis’ out of coherency and in reforming them he exposed his cruisers from the shield bubble. Ray did managed to kill a heavy cruiser and frigate, but there was very little damage spread elsewhere. Thanks to his experience playing short ranged fleets in Dystopian Wars, Ray knows to weather the Turn 1 and 2 barrage, so he was very patient and (somewhat) unphased.

At the start of Turn 2 I made sure to take advantage of Ray’s exposed cruisers. They were still fairly tough but at least their shields weren’t saving on a 3+. Annoyingly it didn’t quite go to plan and I got the sense that my dice luck was packing its bags. Ray struck out against my heavy cruisers and panicked me with a Point Defence Offline critical hit when I also had inbound torpedoes. However, the only remaining heavy cruiser in the squadron saved its sister ship with its own point defence, clearly showing off a close bond. I got a bit of a break when I crit’d a battlecruiser and teleported it backwards out of command range, but Ray piled on the hurt regardless. Between his other battlecrusier and Aegis’, he managed to kill a heavy cruiser (the one that had previously been saved) and damage another. The rest of my fleet did very little and even my battleship couldn’t touch a light cruiser. The Terran battleship, however, got snake-eyes after crit’ing a heavy cruiser, and although it survived it was left with a gaping hole in the side of its hull. A wonderful closing shot to the Turn, even if it did hurt like buggery.

Turn 3 and my dice luck was out the door. With Ray getting into optimum range, my fleet crumbled. His now reformed battlecruisers killed and messed up some heavy cruisers, and between his cruisers and Aegis reduced me to a pair of separate heavy cruisers and a slightly damaged destroyer. My fleets response to all of this was very little. My battleship decided that instead of hitting anything it would look very menacing, and only my destroyers got lucky when they killed the damaged battlecruiser.

I called it at the end of the turn as it was clear to me there was no way I was going to be able to turn the battle around. Ray had won a very convincing Minor Victory. My biggest mistake was my deployment, but lesson learned hopefully.

I also decided to call Ray’s light cruisers the “nope squadron” since after Turn 1 they refused to suffer damage… as well as hit anything.

A good game, albeit frustrating considering my deployment faff. I quite liked the Rense System destroyers but they’re very pricey. More practice and I’ll understand how to use them.

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