Grimdark Future Firefight
On a chilly Saturday evening we retreated into Eric’s Gaming room (aka the well furnished boiler room) and ran a three player One Page Rules game of Grimdark Future Firefight. As is our custom, we play on the war-torn planet Tropica IV.
We agreed to play a 300 points game going over 4 turns.
Eric would field his slimy and sneaky Alien Hives. Build for speed and melee, they are equipped with poisonous claws and nasty teeth. Thus they check all the boxes for your token alien threat.
Olivier deployed his Human Defense Force (HDF), essentially built around high quality specialists. With a quality roll of 2+ for their respective weapons, they are a force to be reckoned with.
I fielded on my own HDF, but I relied more on numbers than quality, i.e. infantry squads and storm troopers. My goal was to stay alive as long as possible, using the poor sods as meat shields.
The hive was confused. In recent weeks it pushed its reach closer and closer to the primate nest. The mindless drones felt the urgency within the hive to press on and on. Procreation was upon the hive and it needed the primate flesh to gestate the hive’s young.
But when the hive finally found the primate nest, the mammals were in disarray. The air wasn’t filled with the stench of panic caused by the hives arrival. Instead, the primates were fighting among themselves. The scouting drones told of primates in dark shells fighting primates in clear shells next to one of their crude stone paths.
But time was of the essence. The larvae in the eggs were screaming to the hive… they need breeding bags!
We played Grimdark Future Firefight on a 4×3 table and tried to figure out a (more or less) fair 3-player deployment.
Eventually we defined two corner deployment zones (Northwest and Southwest) and the entire opposite edge (East) for the third player. Half the board was covered with only jungle terrain, while the other half was covered with ruins, jungle and other obstacles. We made sure to limit line of sight as much as possible. A road with unbroken LOS separated both halves.
Finally, we set up 5 objective markers, according to standard OPR rules.
In order to spice up the game, we defined objectives according to faction.
Both HDF warbands had to claim a maximum of objective markers. Each marker would grant 1 victory point (VP) at the end.
– Alien Hive-objectives
The Alien hive had a different (and slightly disgusting) agenda: they aim to implant alien eggs into the HDF soldiers on the field: per 2 killed HDF soldiers Eric would gain 1 VP.
Into the fray
I was fortunate enough to win the initiative roll and could go first. Starting in the southwestern corner, I made my infantry squads rush between the patches of jungle towards the closest objective marker. Worried by Olivier’s specialists, I made sure to have one squad secure my right flank. Unsure how my opponents would act, I decided to keep two storm trooper in reserve.
Olivier started on the eastern edge and decided to mass his men close to my table edge. He moved them cautiously, yet swiftly through the ruins, making sure my sniper had no line of fire to any of his merry men.
Eric, starting in the northwestern corner, rushed his aliens towards both my and Olivier’s men. Unfamiliar with the Alien Hive stats, the speed of those mindless creatures took me a little bit by surprise. He kept his 3 swarms in reserve for whatever dark design he had in mind.
In the second turn, Eric surprised us human players by immediately engaging into close combat and shredding through my lines. He effectively took the squad that was securing my right flank. Luckily for Olivier, his troops were more resilient, and the dice gods saved his men.
I decided to grasp the moment. Since the alien rushed forward at incredible speed, Eric’s rear flank was unprotected. Thus I dropped both my storm trooper close by and using the jungle as cover.
Being of better quality they instantly managed to take out some critters.
Olivier was facing the other half of the alien onslaught and used his Flamer-specialist (“burn it with fire”) to fend off Eric’s advance.
On my left flank, Olivier advanced his own infantry squad and a specialist with a grenade launcher.
Just before the endgame, it looked sombre for both HDF troops: Olivier managed to keep his troops alive but at the cost of momentum. Eric spawned his 3 swarms close to his lines hindering his advance and cutting him off from the central objective marker.
I made good use of the terrain and pressed my soldiers through the jungle, using their cover to protect them from enemy fire and claws.
The tide turned in the last round. I pushed my troops further towards the closest objective markers as well as the central one. My HDF desperately held their respective objectives and managed to fend off the ravenous aliens.
Olivier took out some more aliens and captured both the eastern objectives.
Luckily for me, Eric’s swarms blocked Olivier’s HDF, handing me the upper hand on my fellow human player.
At the end of the game, most aliens were either dead or scattered all over the battlefield. However, Eric’s aliens managed to snatch several humans for their disgusting designs.
Olivier held the entire eastern part of the battlefield, and most of his men were in good shape. My own troops sat tight on their objectives, battered but breathing.
Eric : 7 humans -> 3 VP
Olivier: 2 objectives -> 2 VP
Me : 3 objectives -> 3 VP
If we had played out a fifth turn in Grimdark Future Firefight, Olivier could have secured at least one more objective marker, since he outgunned me and Eric was not really a threat any more.
But him being a good sportsman, we called it a draw and celebrated not losing with a toast to the dice gods.
Welcome our new member: Olivier! To more Grimdark Future Firefight!