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Hive and the Flame Game at Diecon

First things first. I should never try and run a different scenario at two back to back conventions! Last weekend was British attacking the Hive at Origins.

Teddy, his bugler and standard bearer-Bully!

 

This weekend was Teddy Roosevelt defending the San Juan Mission from bugs. This was during the Second Hive War and in HQC canon this is the event that sets Teddy on the road to the White House. To make things a bit more simple I only put ground units out on the table.  The Table was set with Adventure Terrain trees and a bit of Armourcast River. The center piece was Blue Moon’s Alamo. This is a show stopping piece, even though mine isn’t completely painted yet it still looks fabulous on the table.  It also takes up a lot of table space and limits the options of placement.

Blue Moon's Excellent Alamo

 

This gives an idea of just how big the model is on the table

 

The mission was defended by a mix of TVAG Rough Riders and Old Glory Boxer Rebellion minis. I had ordered the TVAG artillery and Rought Riders and Rough Rider booster set. The TVAG figures mesh well with the Old Glory but the artillery doesn’t. The Old Glory 3.2 inch and the TVAG ones are not nearly the same size. The Old Glory guns are much smaller and have finer detail. They appear to be on American Civil War era carriages though. The Sims Dudley dynamite guns are great through.

The battery of Sims Dudley weapons

 

With the oversized 3.2 incher though I turned a prblem to my advantage and they were now 7 inch siege howitzers. I also kit bashed up a pair of 2 pdr Hotchkiss mountain guns by taking a pair of the Old Glory Nordenfeldt carriages with Confederate William’s gun tubes.  In total the Humans has about one hundred riflemen, 3 seven inch howitzers, five 3,2 inch guns, a pair of Sims Dudley’s, a pair of 2 pdrs, a pom pom, two gatling guns and a Hotchkiss Rotating Cannon. They also had four Colt Potato Diggers and three Heavy Bomb Throwers.

TVAG 3.2 inch guns being used as 7 inch siege howitzers

The bugs started off with three units of Major Crushers as their scouting force. This would be backed up by a large number of other warriors as things went along, including a number of major shooters.

 

Bug scouts on the advance

The Bugs started off on the far end of the table. The three seige howitzers began firing, as they had plenty of range. The three scouting groups took enough fire as they made their way up the board to lose their drones and two of the groups became torpid while one ran amok. This slowed his scout force down and prevented them from making contact. The shooters came up while the scouts were milling about and although they took some casualties they began to inflict them as well.

The environment becomes target rich

By now the main force of Bugs was headed up table. The previously confident humans began to change their minds. No matter how much fire they put down table the bugs kept coming. In an effort to increase their fire power the Rough Riders tried to move guns from the unengaged sides. In doing so they lost control of one weapon bringing it down a ramp and it was destroyed.

3.2 inch gun runs wild down the ramp from its firing position and is destroyed

Under increasingly heavy fire the bug swarms kept up their advance. It seemed that whenever a bug group would be wiped out another would take its place on the horizon (which was exactly what was happening!). The humans didn’t get any such aid. Each time a bug shooter caused a casualty there was not one to fill the gap.

The bug swarms get closer and closer

The bugs marched closer and closer. The Bug player was clever and used his drones to bring the uncontrolled warriors into the advancing swarms. This swelled their numbers and made for tremendously terrifying attack groups. The artillery and finally rifles and machine weapons continued to take their toll. Drones were often casualties. A huge swarm approached the mission chapel building. Just before the warriors scaled the walls their last drone was killed. With a unit this large it was almost a guarantee that the unit would run amok. Only on a seventeen or eighteen would the unit become torpid. The bug player rolled a seventeen! Instead of a ravenous horde of insanely angry warriors swarming over the ruined church walls the creatures lost intrest and wandered aimlessly away. The church was saved, if only for one turn.

The Bugs advance to contact!

Carnage in the ravelin

 

Other swarms headed for the lower walls of the ravelin and the pallisade. The troops manning the stockade wall held for one turn and then broke and ran leaving the Gatlin gun behind. Those in the ravelin defending the gate were made of sterner stuff and held on fighting the bugs all the way up to their gun muzzles and then in hand to bug combat. They held for three turns before being wiped out completely. This allowed the troops on the walls behind them to pull back into the parade ground and form a defensive line. The bugs finally killed the last wounded in the ravelin and broke through the gate.

They are coming through!

The human troops had evacuated the wall just in time as a unit of bugs surged over it.

And not only through the gate but over the wall as well

While this was going on the other groups of bugs made it over teh pallisade between the church and the wall with the gate. They backed the human soldiers up again the wall and rolled forward. In desperation the Rough Riders fired their heavy artillery and bomb throwers into the swarm mere feet from the soldiers. Three turns the bugs surged forward and three times the American artillery and infantry stopped them. The bug dead piled up in front of the deperate soldiers.

Dead bugs carpet the courtyard before the church doors

The brave crew of the Gatling gun atop the curch platform wasn’t so luck. All but one was killed by the flug projectiles of the shooters and then finally a unit of bugs was able to climb the wall. One of them was killed in hand to hand combat with the last gunner but he was finally killed

The humans lose a desperate struggle on the church gun platform

And that was when we ran out of time! We’d been at it for almost eight hours. I lost count of the number of folks that rolled dice, let alone those who stopped to watch.From the post game comments it appeared that the players had a very good time. I’d also like to thank Chris at Game Nite who was retailing for me. I sent a few people over to his very nice booth and they bought a few copies of various Aerolyth Enterpises’ products which I duly signed.