Many points on a distant moon… A Horizon Wars battle report

Summer break is officially over, thus it is time for humanities favorite past time … WAR… but on a smaller scale. So we brought war to the stars and went for an Horizon Wars battle.

Robey Jenkins hard Science-Fiction skirmish game is easy accessible and quick to learn, allowing fast paced games.
But since we didn’t give it a shot in a while, we had to reread some finer details of the game. Also… we might have overestimated the game size when we settled on 28 points per side…. in all honesty, we just wanted to dust of our miniature tanks and mechs and put them all on the table… *cough cough*

Setting

In a not so distant future, renewed conflict arises between the Star Alliance and the Imperial Commonwealth. In their wish, to expand their influence, both regional powers cast their eye yet again on the once peaceful Tropico-System.
Having learned that the Commonwealth aims to establish a base on the mineral rich moon M-79-22, the Star Alliance decided that they won’t have that kind of nonsense and claimed the moon for themselves. The Commonwealth on their side decided to ignore any alliance claims, protests or other Alliance communication and proceeded to build a giant shield generator near a thermic vent on M-79-22’s northern hemisphere. This would be the centre of all future operation on M-79-22.

Scenario

We imagined a scenario where one player had to defend two strategic points, while the other one had to claim at least one of them in order to win this miniature battle of Horizon Wars. Failing to do so means victory for the defender.
The Commonwealth (played by my good self) had to defend the shield generator, installed between some lava pits, and the shield generator control facility, built on a ridge.
The Star Alliance forces (played by Eric) had to capture them.

Setup

A large scale battle of Horizon Wars is set up.
The terrain for Horizon Wars is set up. The generator gives a gentle hum while the engineers in the control facility have little idea, that the Star Alliance is about to come for them.

The Commonwealth had three setup points.
A relief column, made out of several armored cavalry (AC) whould advance to the table centre.
Several mechas and heavy infantry would guard the control facility, while the generator was defended by light and heavy infantry supported by a tank and a small mech.

Another battle of Horizon Wars

The Star Alliance had initiative and rushed from the northern table corner towards the centre.

Initial deployment of Star Alliance in Horizon Wars.

They amassed all their strength at one point, clearly aiming to capture the generator and chase away the seemingly week defenders.
ED210, the Alliance’s premier battlemech, however moved slowly toward the controll facility. Thus the Commonwealth defenders were forced to hold their positions and could not support their allies next to the generator.
The Alliance AC slowly move towards the lava fields, as the Commonwealth infantry open fire at them. Little match for the Alliance heavy cavalry, the infrantymen have to hope their own AC will arrive in time.

Large scale battle of Horizon Wars
The defenders at the generator are besieged by the main bulk of the Alliances AC.

Air strike (gone horribly wrong)

While the light infantry fought bravely against the Alliance AC, a Commonwealth Scarab-mech walked up to the frontline. Pinacle of mecha-technology, the nimble four legged mech was a serious threat to the Alliance light ACs.
Then came one of the most tense moments of the engagement.
Out of nowhere, an Alliance strike fighter bore down on the mech and unleashed heavy hell on it, damaging it badly. Destroying the mech, would mean taking out the only Commonwealth asset, able to stall the Alliance advance and allow the relief column to close in.
A nearby lone infantry platoon, took their chance and opened fire on the low flying plane and managed to down it with a very lucky shot (two natural 12s on D12es causing two crits). The Alliance commander could only watch its prized fighter jet blow up as it crashed next to its former prey.

Meanwhile and less glorius… the defenders of the control station repositioned themselves and await the attack that never comes.

The drop

Being in a very tight spot, the Alliance commander goes all-in and sends his airborne transport right in to the heart of the fight. If it could drop of its payload close enough to the generator, the infantry it carried could rush for the generator and claim it.
The Commonwealth victory was in serious jeopardy.
The transporter dropped two infantry platoons that instantly made for the generator… not one of them would reach their goal, as every Commonwealth element in the vicinity opend fire upon them.

In this game of Horizon Wars two warring factions try to get the supremacy of a distant moon.

Having lost their infantry and being unable to breach the enemy lines, the Star Alliance decided to retreat. Better to live and to fight another day, than to fight now and die.

The engagement ended with a very close victory for the Imperial Commonwealth. By sheer luck of the divine dice, the Alliance infantry was taken out. Otherwise this battle in Horizon Wars would have been lost.

Epilogue

Failing to capture the generator installations meant that the Star Alliance handed M-79-22 to the Imperial Commonwealth on a platter.
Over the coming weeks and months, the Commonwealth built several fortified positions. But what worried the Star Alliances intelligence service the most, were the large airfields and improvised star ports built by the Commonwealth into the very rocks of the moon. It could mean only one thing… the Imperial Commonwealth Navy was heading full thrust towards the Tropico System.

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