After Action Report: Noble Armada

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steelbrok
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby steelbrok » Mon Jul 01, 2013 8:15 am

Lots of Boom, not to mention crash, board and battle. Full report once family trip is over.
steelbrok
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby steelbrok » Mon Jul 01, 2013 10:04 pm

Enter the Vuldrok

The next scenario was planned as both an immediate follow up to the last battle and another on the back foot engagement.

Initial forces were easy, they were based on the forces left at the end of the previous engagement.

Soviet
“Don” Reaper, no damage 120 points
Nightwing, down to 17 damage, weapons critical 1 160 points
“Molotov” Tupok’ta destroyer, down to 12 damage, criticals: engines 1, weapons 1, shields 2 200 points

Royal Navy
“Scott” Wayfarer class explorer, damage 5, critical: shields 1 50 points
“Livingstone” Wayfarer, no damage 50 points
“Nelson” Sawfly command frigate, no damage 150 points
“Prince of Hanover” Griffin class destroyer, no damage 220 points
“Invincible” Malcolm class carrier, down to 8 damage, criticals: shields 1, engines 1 150 points

Now if I’d started the engagement with the ships in their current state I think it’s fair to say the Soviets wouldn’t have lasted long, so I declared all damage repaired, troops and fighters brought back up to strength during the interval between the battles. Because I’m still trying to get galliots to be useful I reinforced the Soviets with the Lucretzia class “Koniev” 120 points

This gave the RN 640 points (including 4 Kestrels and 4 Fitzhugh fighters)
The Soviets 600 points. Given earlier battle I expected the RN/Hawkwood force to have the advantage.

In the scenario the Soviets are rendezvousing with their new Vuldrok allies. I just lined up the box set and decided to roll a dice for each ship at the beginning of turn three. Every ship whose dice rolled a six would enter the battle.

The terrain was again scanty, just a few scattered asteroid fields.

The soviet set up had the Reaper in an asteroid field. It actually stayed there for the entire battle. (All Stop special action every turn)
The Nightwing and the galliot were in close company. The idea being that between them they covered a wider sweep and thus had a better chance of getting an effective boarding action to work.

In turn 1 the Tupok’ta destroyer doesn’t have the range to hit anything with its slug guns although its EM guns take down the Griffin’s shields.

The RN concentrate their fire on the Tupok’ta, a tough nut. The kestrels head for the galliot/Nightwing pair.

The Soviet reaper takes out a kestrel.

Turn 2.

The kestrels make attack runs on the galliot, another of them is taken out by the reaper.
The Tupok’ta is again unable to engage any targets with its guns. The Sawfly crosses its T (an ultimately poor decision). The galliot is battered and the missiles of the Malcolm, Sawfly and Griffin are steadily chipping away at the Tupok’ta, The galliot, reaper and Nightwing cause significant damage to the Malcolm carrier.

Turn 3
One Vuldrok destroyer and two light frigates enter the fray. They actually give the Fitzhugh fighters something to do (no shields so the fighters line up ahead and astern for repeated straffing). They do add a mass of slug guns to the battle.

The Tupok’ta boards the Sawfly command frigate. The Nightwing boards the Griffin destroyer. Each fires on the ship that boarded the other.
The Malcolms shields are knocked down by a combination of the Tupok’ta’s EM guns and reaper and galliot lasers. After receiving multiple slug gun barrages the Malocolm goes boom.

Turn 4
The Griffin and Sawfly continue to fire on each others’ boarders but are rapidly losing the fighting onboard.
The explorers Scott and Livingstone make a run for it but Scott is destroyed. The Soviets and Vuldrok only have fighters left to fire at (no point in blowing up ships you’re about to capture!) and most are destroyed this turn.

The ‘Livingstone’ escapes with Admiral Donal ap-Arthur’s last message:
“Tell them we’re facing a whole new war”


OK, big change around here. Even if the Vuldrok hadn’t arrived the RN would hace lost their destroyer and command frigate. They were in retrospect the more dispersed force and that told when the boarding actions started and ships couldn’t support one another.
The reaper simply stayed in an asteroid field for the entire battle using it’s port/forward/starboard/turret lasers to pick off fighters and knock down shields was very effective.
locarno24
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby locarno24 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:20 pm

no shields so the fighters line up ahead and astern for repeated straffing
I'm not sure if that's the case or not; some playtest versions of the Vuldrok Armoured trait made them immune to Weak weapons. Check the final version.
Understand that I'm not advocating violence.
I'm just saying that it's highly effective and I strongly recommend using it.
steelbrok
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby steelbrok » Mon Jul 08, 2013 2:00 pm

I don't see that on my pdf, will have to check book to see in any difference in there.
miggel
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby miggel » Mon Jul 08, 2013 3:42 pm

It's still there. Last sentence in the Armour Rules. Kinda hidden for such an important rule.

"Weak weapons cannot affect a Vuldrok ship."
steelbrok
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby steelbrok » Mon Jul 08, 2013 9:17 pm

I stand corrected! Thanks

The idea of loading up a carrier with free Fitzhugh fighters just died!
locarno24
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby locarno24 » Tue Jul 09, 2013 6:28 am

There's a reason they're free! :)

Essentially, Noble Armada fighters are the best form of defence against enemy bombers and assault shuttles but that's the limit of their tactical use. If you can burn out an enemy's shields, then repeated strafing runs can hurt - but don't rely on that.

If anything, it's more of use for Hazat fleets, since they'll have had to burn out an enemy's shields to hit them with meson tubes, so if the fighters aren't busy protecting the roderigos, they might as well put a few shots into the target ship at the same time.

But yes, that rule is pretty deliberate - essentially the Vuldrok neither have, nor care much about, fighters. It does leave them relatively vulnerable to bombers, though, especially since they have no shields - meson tube-carrying fighters, or the really fat-arsed bombers (like the Mumit) can cause them some serious conniptions.
Understand that I'm not advocating violence.
I'm just saying that it's highly effective and I strongly recommend using it.
steelbrok
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby steelbrok » Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:26 am

Assassination

The Royal Navy are under pressure. Although they have won most of the battles they have taken losses (including an entire fleet in the last engagement). And now a new enemy, the Vuldrok have entered the war. They decide to send a delegation to Covenant to ask for Church aid against the Soviet/Vuldrok alliance. High ranking bishops will travel on board the destroyer “Lord of the Isles” too. A Church frigate accompanies the RN force. News of the mission is leaked to the Soviets, probably by the New Oxford spy ring.

The Soviet/Vuldrok objective is to destroy the delegation. We have an Assassination scenario.

The fleets:

Royal Navy (Hawkwood)

Lord of the Isles, Griffin class destroyer, 220 points
Rodney, Sawfly class command frigate, 150 points
Fisher, Sawfly class command frigate, 150 points
Swindon, Hornet class frigate, 100 points
Southampton, Hornet class frigate, 100 points

Church

James, Rack class frigate, 100 points

Total 820 points, 6 ships

Soviet
Don, Reaper class raider, 60 points
Poland, Mantis class frigate, 100 points
Moldavia, Mantis class frigate, 100 points

Vuldrok
Green Dragon, Langskip class destroyer, 200 points
Blue Drake Darraor class light frigate, 75 points
White Drake Darraor class light frigate, 75 points
Black Reaver, Frolijr class galliot, 120 points
Blue Worm, Myrkwyrm class explorer, 40 points
Green Worm, Myrkwyrm class explorer, 40 points

Total 810 points, 9 ships

Some thoughts on the Vuldrok fleet.
The galliot is the best boarding orientated ship I’ve seen so far. 2 x 90 degree turns. Fast, Agile, hardly any guns! Yes, I see this as good. A player can’t get distracted by trying to get into a firing position. All it does is uses its manoeuvrability to close on the enemy and board them.

The Soviet /Vuldrok plan is to use the Soviet ships to knock down shields and then fling lots of metal at the Griffin destroyer. The Vuldrok galliot and light frigates will focus on boarding actions. Having 9 ships against the RN’s 6 they will always have a ship moving last. This should be the galliot which can then pick a target and rely on troops to overwhelm it. Ideally one of the Sawfly’s should be the target as they are tougher to take down with guns but the galliot’s captain won’t be too choosy, just as long as he boards something as quickly as possible.

The RN (Hawkwood) fleet need to keep their distance from the Vuldrok boarders. They will use their missiles to try and knock out the Soviet (Decados) shielded ships.
The RN ships are all speed 12, the Church frigate is speed 8. It may be necessary to leave this one behind with potential diplomatic consequences.

Being armed with lasers instead of blaster will be a bonus against the Vuldrok as the Precise trait will offset their armour to some degree (and being Accurate too will increase the number of hits to start with).


Terrain is generated randomly from Excel spreadsheet giving:

1 Open Space 2 Open Space 3 Open Space 4 Open Space
5 Open Space 6 Open Space 7 Asteroid Field 9 8 Open Space
9 Dust Cloud 10 Open Space 11 Open Space 12 Open Space
13 Open Space 14 Open Space 15 Dust Cloud 16Asteroid Belt10
17 Open Space 18 Open Space 19 Open Space 20 Open Space
21 Open Space 22 Open Space 23 Open Space 24 Open Space


The RN/Church fleet deploy in the centre-right of the board (areas 11 and 15) heading to the left hand (short) edge. The two Hornet frigates are slightly to the rear to enable them to attempt counter boarding actions.

The Soviet/Vuldrok force deploys in areas 2 and 6.

The Soviet Mantis frigates are to the front of the Sov/Vuldrok fleet as they are slower. The Reaper class raider starts in the dust cloud in area 9, ahead of the RN fleet.
steelbrok
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby steelbrok » Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:28 am

The battle

Turn 1.
The RN try to move forward and to their left to keep open the distance between themselves and the enemy. The Soviets and Vuldrok power forward. A Vuldrok light frigate attempts to grapple a sawfly and fails. The two RN Hornets Prepare to Grapple this light frigate in turn. The first one fails its roll and the second aborts its attempt.

The Vuldrok galliot and the two Myrkwyrms are unable to reach any RN ships to grapple. They had been to the rear of their fleet. I had wrongly positioned them there to be protected by the gunned ships. This simply meant they couldn’t engage while still having to move within range of the RN’s guns.

Recognising the danger of the Vuldrok galliot the RN focus their fire on it and cripple it. All the RN’s missiles however are launched at one of the Mantis frigates (the “Moldavia”.

The Soviets and Vuldrok concentrate all the fire they can on the RN’s Griffin destroyer.

Turn 2
A Vuldrok light frigate grapples a Sawfly. Both Myrkwyrms fail their grappling attempts.

The Langskip maintains a broadside position against the RN’s Griffin.

All RN missiles continue to target one of the Soviet Mantis frigates (the Moldavia).

Turn 3.
The Vuldrok are poorly positioned for firing this turn, only the Langskip and one light frigate can engage. However this light frigate inflicts 7 points of damage on the Hornet “Southampton”. Those slug guns can rock!

The other light frigate successfully grapples one of the Sawfly frigates (the “Fisher”) but is destroyed by the Griffin destroyer “Lord of the Isles” during the fire phase.

The Sawfly and Hornet frigates concentrate their fire on the other light frigate and it blows up.

The Mantis frigate “Moldavia” is now crippled by the ongoing missile barrage.

Turn4.
Although crippled the Vuldrok galliot manages to grapple and board the Church’s Rack frigate. They wipe out the Church troops in two boarding phases.

Both Myrkwyrms grapple the Sawfly “Rodney” but both are destroyed before the boarding phase commences.

The Langskip destroyer blows up the Griffin, accomplishing the Soviet/Vuldrok mission. The Rack frigate takes 8 damage from the resulting blast.

The “Southampton” (Hornet) destroys the Mantis “Moldavia”.

Turn 5.
The remaining Vuldrok light frigate is destroyed.
The “Fisher” (Sawfly) destroys the Vuldrok galliot.

The now Vuldrok crewed Rack frigate boards the Sawfly frigate “Rodney” but the two Hornets are able to counter board

Turn 6.
The Soviets and Vuldrok begin to withdraw. The “Poland” (Mantis frigate) is crippled and runs adrift. The remaining Vuldrok boarders abandon the “Rodney” and withdraw to the captured Rack frigate “James”.

Final status
Royal Navy (Hawkwood)

Lord of the Isles, Griffin class destroyer, 220 points - destroyed
Rodney, Sawfly class command frigate, 150 points – no damage!
Fisher, Sawfly class command frigate, 150 points – 12 damage, reactor, weapons and shields all critical 1
Swindon, Hornet class frigate, 100 points – 15 damage, troops 2.
Southampton, Hornet class frigate, 100 points – 11 damage, shields critical 1

Church

James, Rack class frigate, 100 points - captured

Total 820 points, 6 ships

Soviet
Don, Reaper class raider, 60 points – no damage
Poland, Mantis class frigate, 100 points – 0 damage, running adrift
Moldavia, Mantis class frigate, 100 points - destroyed

Vuldrok
Green Dragon, Langskip class destroyer, 200 points – 25 damage
Blue Drake Darraor class light frigate, 75 points - destroyed
White Drake Darraor class light frigate, 75 points - destroyed
Black Reaver, Frolijr class galliot, 120 points - destroyed
Blue Worm, Myrkwyrm class explorer, 40 points - destroyed
Green Worm, Myrkwyrm class explorer, 40 points - destroyed

So the RN have 500 points of ships remaining on the table, the Soviets and Vuldrok 360 (including the captured Rack).

Victory points are 250 to the RN, 210 to the Soviets/Vuldrok plus 100 for their successful assassination of the Lord off the Isles.

A fun game. The vuldrok galliot was poorly positioned but given that it became the main target of the RN in the first part of the battle this probably didn’t make too much difference. The Vuldok armour rules did protect them somewhat but against a Hawkwood fleet using Precise lasers this is less of an advantage. It will be interesting to pit them against a blaster armed fleet. Could the Griffin destroyer have been saved? Probably yes but only by concentrating fire on the Langskip and thus allowing the Vuldrok galliot and light frigates free reign to board the frigates.
steelbrok
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Re: After Action Report: Noble Armada

Postby steelbrok » Fri Mar 14, 2014 1:21 pm

The Cochin Incident

This set the French space force (represented by Hazat units) against some Vuldrok raiders.

The Vuldrok force was one Langskip destroyer and two Darroar light frigates. Total 350 points

The French/Hazat had one Trafalgar class carrier, the “Villeneuve” with 6 Dagger fighters (simply because I have them as part of the Villenuves’s standard load out, they took no part in the battle) and 6 Immortal boarding shuttles. Total 350 points

The French are defending the planet Cochin and deployed in orbit.
The Vuldrok enter at the other end of the board and initially the planet is between the two forces.

Initially the Trafalgar was able to manoeuvre to fire on the approaching Vuldork ships. As nearly all Vuldrok firepower is in the port and starboard arcs they had to move carefully to bring fire to bear and yet not make approaching the Trafalgar difficult.

I had plans to try and swarm one of the light frigates with the Immortal boarding shuttles. That plan did not survive contact with the enemy! Nor did many of the boarding shuttles.

Their speed is only 8 and until the Vuldrok ships were trying to position them selves to board the Trafalgar, the boarding shuttles just couldn’t close on the faster Vuldrok ships. Naturally the vuldrok fired anything they could at the big Trafalgar carrier but whenever a weapon couldn’t engage the carrier but could engage an Immortal…only 2 Immortals survived.

The French/Hazat had a run of good luck with imitative rolls and were usually able to force a Vuldrok ship to move first and then turn to engage it even though the Trafalgar only has one 45 degree turn.
At one point both light frigates were positioned to board the Trafalgar. One failed to grapple, the other was itself boarded by the remaining two boarding shuttles and was then destroyed by fire from the Trafalgar before the boarding phase began.

At the end of the game both light frigates had been blown up and the Langskip destroyer was running adrift. The Trafalgar was reduced from 42 to 19 damage with several critical hits.

Cochin is secure but only just.

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