STAW Scenario – Fleet Grinder

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  • #22410
    Profile photo of Andy R
    Andy R
    Participant

      The Fleet Grinder

      This is a multiplayer scenario for STAW. I wanted a game you could play with three players without doing a 2v1 game or a three way game where one player stays unengaged for a while and then clears up. I wrote the Battlefest Scenario but that is more cantered around a single ship in a mass dogfight. The Fleet Grinder shares some elements but allows you to use many ships at once. This means cards such as Gowron (6), Clarke Tyrel, and Mirok (who have little use in Battlefest) can be used. I needed a way to stop the game degenerating into a 3 way joust where the “lets you and him fight” strategy works too well. Fleet Grinder feeds in one ship per player on every other turn until all are engaged. It also feeds them in at random locations. It really mixes things up and prevents castling and avoiding combat.

      Number of players
      The scenario was designed as a good way to play those awkward three player games. You can use it with two players or four. Five or six players may get a bit crowded but give it a try, maybe using the smaller point value option in the variations section.

      Play Area
      3’x3’ table for small to medium games
      4’x4’ table for large games of 5 or more players.

      Place 6 objective tokens spread out around the map used as random entry points. They are numbered 1-6 and 1D6 used to determine which one.
      Add some terrain such as asteroids, wreckage and maybe a planet.

      Game Length
      The game continues until there is a last ship standing. The three player standard game will take 2-3 hours. If you are short of time then playing on the smaller 3×3 table will naturally intensify combat and speed things along.

      Forces
      Each player has a 200 point fleet with the standard fleet design rules for squadrons, unique cards, 50 point cap etc. Purity is up to your group but we usually play faction pure or ship pure. Resources and admirals may be used.

      We have played using 4 x 50 point killer ships and fleets containing more balanced 5 or 6 ship builds and it works fine with games lasting 12-15 turns. I’m not sure how fleets of 8-12 tiny ships would fair. Would they suffer or would they benefit from lots of ships safe in reserve until late in the game? It would certainly take a while to play so for the standard scenario I’ll limit players to taking a maximum of 8 units including no more than one squadron of fighters.

      Setup
      Players each randomly pick one of their ships. Examine the captain skill for each of these and deploy them on a random unoccupied objective token in the usual initiative order with any desired facing. The other ships are kept in reserve and will arrive later in the game.

      Gameplay
      The game begins in a multiplayer free for all with no alliances and plenty of backstabbing. At the beginning of turn 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13 and even 15 each player must bring on one random ship from those remaining of their fleet held in reserve. Once all your ships are on the table you get no further reinforcements. Reserve ships deploy on random unoccupied objective tokens with any facing and are deployed in usual initiative order. Newly placed ships may fight normally as soon as they arrive. All ships set movement dials after seeing where all reserves arrive that turn. If a player finds he has no ships left on the table but has some in reserve he waits for the reserves as normal but may choose which of his reserve ships comes on at the beginning of the next odd numbered turn.

      Victory
      The game continues until there is only one player remaining with ships alive on the table and no other players have ships still in reserve. Last man standing determines the winner. Everyone else gets a position inversely related to the order they were knocked out.

      Variations
      Swarm fleets: Relax the limitation of 8 ships and only one squadron.
      Smaller fleets: Each player selects 150, 130 or 120 point fleets.
      Assassin: Players get a bonus if they kill a particular unit. Before the game begins, each player secretly writes down the one unit he wishes to assassinate from among the other players forces. E.g. captain Tyrel on the Voyager. If their forces scored the last damage point on that target ship they may immediately repair 2 shields or hull (not critical hits) on one of their ships in play. If the target ship was killed by a different player or an accident (running off map, into asteroids etc.) then you must immediately suffer 2 damage on one of your own ships in play.
      Multi Assassin: as above but each player writes down one target from each enemy players forces. E.g. In a 3 player game the Romulan player writes down Tyrel on the Voyager and Gowron on the Koraga.

      #22415
      Profile photo of Andy Alexander
      Andy Alexander
      Participant

        sounds interesting. If it’s run on a Sat morning I should be able to attend. I’d have to leave around 2pm.

        Also I have the DS9 model which could be used as terrain, or maybe an attack/defend the station variant? The gradual reinforcements mechanic could work well for that.

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