The X Wings and Y Wing keep coming straight at Achilles, intent on launching their torpedoes. The X Wings slow to 3 cycles to keep in formation with the Y Wings and to remain outside of the range of Achilles’s anti-aircraft batteries. The Y Wing’s maintain their velocity of 4 cycles.
The newly arrived X Wings accelerate to 4 cycles and move to engage the front of the fleet.
The Hishen Corvette, now identified as Scipion, accelerates to 2 cycles and moves straight toward the fleet.
The Hishen Destroyer, identified as Formidable, begins to accelerate, moves dead ahead and turns to port.
Jackie commands in a calming voice, “The fleet is to maintain course and speed. All fighters move up to attack speed and engage the enemy small craft. Ready the Raptors for launch.”
“Fire long range beam batteries at the Hishen Destroyer Formidable as they bear,” Jackie commands.
Flashes of light erupt across the sky as Ajax and Achilles open fire.
Achilles’ shot is accurate and hits the ship. The beam weapon punches through the light phase shield of the Destroyer and damages it’s thrusters.
Ajax’s shot is close and impacts near the hull of Formidable. The phase shields shimmer from the impact of the fire as they collapse for 2 rounds.
With the enemy in arc of his weapons but his guns out of range, Old Sarge pushes open the safety cap over the missile fire control button and fires a Fire and Forge missile at the closest X Wing. This projectile detaches from the Viper and rockets towards it’s target. The X Wing pilot jinks to the left and the right and avoids the missile and he loses formation as he is pushed 1 cycle to aspect 2 and is turned 60 degrees to the starboard but he evades the missile.
Apollo and Da Gobbo fire another two Fire and Forget missiles at the same pilot. He throws his X Wing around in a desperate attempt to evade the deadly warheads. His craft is moves violently being forced 2 cycles to aspect 6 and spun another 60 degrees to starboard from the force of the action. Shrapnel from one of the missiles hits the cockpit and the pilot is knocked unconscious. His ship sideslips 4 cycles to port.
With their fire resolved, the captains and pilots of the Star Navy brace for the return fire of their enemy.
I thought I’d write up some quick notes on the game to explain a few features of 5150 Fighter Command and the game so far.
The more observant readers might have noticed that in the last graphic that the change of position and aspect of the X Wing wasn’t effected in the picture. That’s because I took the picture a couple of days ago and at the moment I’m not near the game table, which has been left set up. When I get back to the table I’ll make the changes as appropriate.
The move sequence is quite different from other Two Hour Wargames and it is as such:
- The side which has the lower activation score moves first followed by the side with the higher activation score. This enables the side with the higher activation to get into a better firing position. There is no shooting or any other actions during this part of the round just moving.
- Then, for the ships which are active this round, their actions are resolved in the order of their activation score. This means that those that moved second get to fire/use their active actions first, followed by those that moved first and are active (and thus those that moved first fire second and those that moved second first first). Those that aren’t active can only react.
This really puts the player, especially fighter pilots, at the mercy of the activation die. But this is where Ed’s mad genius again kicks in. When the pilots get to 5 inches (or cycles as I’ve referred to them in the battle report) they enter visual range and they start to dog fight (all guns have a range of 5 inches or less but missiles have a longer range as we just saw in the battle report). This breaks up the sequence considerably as individual pilots take in sight tests and act and react to each other. Now we haven’t seen this yet but it’ll happen pretty soon given the proximity of the pilots.
Some folks may have noticed that Old Sarge fired a missile after he afterburned. That is a unique feature of the Star Navy as they have better equipment. The Hishen’s can’t do this and so it might be a bit of a tactic for the Navy boys to exploit moving forward (I only really discovered this tactical advantage by accident during the game play).
In 5150 Fighter Command the action and re-action tests are quite easy to remember (compared to All Things Zombie) and the game plays quite quickly. It may appear that it’s taking me a long time to play the game but that’s more a function how long it takes me to pull together the graphics and write up the battle report. If I wasn’t posting the battle on the net, I’d probably finish the game in less than 2 hours but writing it up, pulling together the graphics and checking the rules (as this is my first game) is taking me about an hour or two for just one turn. It’ll get quicker as I go along and the battles will be resolved faster as I get more experience but for the moment I’m quite enjoying the pace and watching the battle evolve.