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Nashcon 2017 Demo Recap (pic-heavy)

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I'd like to start off with a big "THANK YOU!" to CAVBOSS for all the goodies to give away and the slick, color advertising booklets for CAV.  They made it really easy to show people where to go for more information, see the model pricing (everyone marveled at how affordable it was to make an army!), and get a copy of the quick-start rules.  On top of that, it was great to be able to say that a force construction program, status markers, data cards, errata, etc. were all available for free from the game's main site.  This is a huge plus, in my opinion.


Many thanks to Troy (squatwarlord) for setting everything up with Nashcon and to Hugh for creating the excellent terrain & command bunker!  Everyone had to deal with my novice painting skills and truly random dice.


The demo was set as a Rach force engaging a Terran bunker installation on Hellspire.  As most of us had never run a demo before, we started off small, with a CAV squad on each side, no faction doctrines or CP.  Each player handled two CAV a piece.




The Terrans had a TVP and firepower edge, which would become a big problem with the Rach force being split on separate sides of the map.




Despite the valiant efforts of the Rach Kahn to ECM the daylights out of the Terran Talon II, the Terran Starhawks forced the Rach Gnomic into hiding.  




The Terran Falcon acted as a Sentry, allowing the Starhawks to pull an about-face, crest the center hill and focus-fire the Rach Dictators into oblivion one by one.  The game ended with a decisive victory for the defending Terrans.


For round 2, we added a squad of tanks to each side - 2x Despots & 2x Malefactors for the Rach, 2x Wolves & 2x Dingoes for the Terrans.  This leveled the TVP field and added some interesting behaviors (read: berserker Malefactors).  We added some new players and Hugh joined in the action for his first game of CAV:SO as well.




Squads kept themselves much more coherent this round, but the Rach Gnomic took a beating at the start of the match when it was caught as the only visible target.  That meant it would be late to the carnage party...




The Rach wasted no time focusing fire on one of the Starhawks, exacting harsh vengeance on the Terrans for daring to draw first blood (the aforementioned Gnomic that nearly bit the dust on the first activation of the game).  The exchange of fire after that was fierce and quite brutal.









<insert minor break for lunch>


The Rach became quite bloodthirsty after the pause in the action.  The Terrans faught valiantly (particularly the Falcon), but it couldn't stop the Rach Dictators and Despots.  And everyone learned the joy (and terror) that is a Malefactor's overdriven PBG at point blank range...






The Rach claimed an overwhelming victory, leaving (mostly) Terran wreckage in their wake:




For the final round of the day, we flipped the script and moved the terrain around a bit to see what happens when the Terrans attack a Rach installation.  We introduced command points and faction doctrines, with the Terrans choosing Air Superiority (free gunship assaults each round), and the Rach taking Children of the Storm (+2 MV, -1 Armor, extra +1 at point-blank range).  We split the forces into 4 2-model squads due to the high player count.  I forgot to take a pic of the setup.  Oops.


The Terrans attempted a guarded assault, hoping to draw the Rach in one-by-one into a heavy crossfire.  This could have worked, were it not for insanely good rolls for the Rach (lots of crits).  Despite frequently burning out their PBGs for one round, the Malefactors consistently struck for 4 damage (ouch!).





The Malefactors kept the Starhawks busy enough for the Dictators to close, turning the battle into a close-range scrum.  It should be noted here that the Malefactor and Wolf machine guns were responsible for multiple (3, I believe) kill shots.  You don't need a high DV against hard targets if you roll a 10+ at point blank range with a heavily damaged target...





I didn't grab any extra pictures of the game after that point.  The fighting was brutal for both sides, leading me to introduce everyone to the Regroup action as the Rach tried to seize the EW advantage - the Terran Talon II had been killed, but the Kahn was left squad-less.  In the end, we called it draw with a couple of CAV and tanks left on each side.


It should probably be noted that despite taking a pounding from multiple heavy hits from the Dictators and multiple guided missile hits, as well as being "piloted" by different players, the Terran Talon II never failed a pilot check or suppression roll the entire day.  Not a one.  Nerves of steel for Terran recon pilots, I suppose.  :)


Thanks to everyone who played and chatted about the game.  We had a blast!  The Nashcon organizers seemed quite happy to have some sci-fi action in the sea of historical games.  So maybe we'll do this again next year with Adon vs Ritterlich?


I'll close with hastily taken pictures of each side's forces.  If I ever figure out how to black-wash and decorate a base properly, I promise to finish these off.




-Grom (Chris)


PS - Gary (who played in the first round demo), if you happen to spot this - PM me, I forgot to grab your contact info!





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Good job Chris, But the Talon never died, it was a Starhawk that was the first to die on the Terrian side. I was going to run up and kick the tank with the Talon, but you showed me how ineffective that would be with a light recon cav, and so I just shot it up. I will note that Chris had forgot that one of the Malefactors had burned out his main gun due to overdrive. So my Starhawk may have still lived. But we didnt remember till well after the fact. 

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Well written summary. Had a great time running the demonstrations. I think the first demo might not have been so one sided had we not allowed the players to mix up the original squads but the setup did favor the Terrans.  I don't think anything would have made up for their combination of lucky dice rolls and card flips though. 

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