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  #1477  
Old January 24th, 2023, 12:27 PM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

Planning For The Fourth AOA Session: Wed. Jan. 25

This introduction is being written the day before Game Day. Taeblewalker had to drop out, and then Sherman Davies dropped in today; so we should still have 3 Players. I've free built a new version of the AOA Mirror Map --based on the Haslab Vanguard Edition Offering Display Photo once again--for that number of Scapers. I've also left enough space to add a 4th Player if I need to do that. I'd just add another Start Zone and another wall section or two if someone else is able to attend.

The main difference is that I'm adding 4 more but smaller wall sections to the three from the first 2 Player map, near or around the 3rd Players starting side. So there will now be 7 sections in total. The central pond is based on exact hexes from photos of the last game, but its upside down now from its original position between the two main original wall sections. Hopefully we will have some new pictures to show you after the game(s).

If I play 600 Points of the Kyries, as I plan to do just to try them out once, I think I'll introduce a Scenario Rule just for this game that will not allow them to fly over any Glamoured Wall section that turns out to be Illusory. (Guess they are repelled by their strong magic). That should balance out their all being Fliers to some degree. On the other hand, it won't completely devalue the cost paid for their Flying ability for each of them, which wouldn't really be fair to them. They will also get the advantage of flying over or onto other slowing terrain like water, foliage, and hills.

Since the total of all 7 of Anitar's custom Kyrie cards is 725, and Misaerx
costs 130, the easiest way to form a Kyrie army with six out of the seven in use is to just leave her out. The resulting Chas Kyrie Army would be:

Xiamura 120
Mielki 110
Kilkorax 105
Qhryion 100
Loviatek 90
Glinerva 70

Total: 595

These are mostly support pieces, with various types of passive Auras (like Raelin). But two seem to have good offensive powers, so we'll see what I can do with them.

***

Its game day morning! I'm wondering how my old pals Sherman Davies and Kolakoski will react to using some many new cards that have only been partly playtested, if at all. Taeblewalker and Thrasher Darkrai enjoyed them their first time out. Magic Gama and Benjy have not been available in the last six weeks or so to try them out yet. While we four core members all do our own customs, and I've introduced many supers from individual designers, putting so many army cards on the table at once that have not been fully put through their paces is really unprecedented for us.

As noted before, the "Revealed" AOA cards were described as still drafts, and Anitar has said nothing about testing her own cards. Neither have my own been used yet, except for our three sessions of AOA recently (Wing commander Zed Nesbitt and The SOTM Heroes). I don't want to get into tweaking the cards for now. No one else on the site has proposed forming a committee to do so. (There is the new ACES Commitee, which will evaluate new C3V cards to see if they are compatible with the AOA cards, looking forward to them being blended together, see here):
https://www.heroscapers.com/communit...ad.php?t=61761

But this NYCG4 project is a special case . Reviving AOA and taking it from its condition during the initial offering period called for radical measures to forge ahead. Now we'll see where we're at. I've been assuming we'll move into the next stage of playing them with other cards if they prove out, which they generally have so far. But it will be up to the other guys as well about how we proceed.

I've done "reconstruction" work on historical miniatures and both historical and nonhistorical scenarios for many years, and also Greek and Norse mythology, respectively in original radio dramas and live storytelling. Trying to go back and recreate the work of previous creators while doing justice to them is a challenge for sure. And playing hundreds of board games is also an exercise in trying to fully bring into being the visions of their designers into full realization as well.

While we will move to the next stage, since two of them are already considering building armies with AOA and older cards, their ultimate fate is not in my hands alone. However, our usual rule is that the monthly Game Master gets to set the scenario and rules for each game. I certainly plan to include AOA for a while in my own monthly games every four months, and in the extra second AOA sessions I'm running myself.

Last edited by chas; January 25th, 2023 at 07:58 AM.
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  #1478  
Old January 26th, 2023, 07:55 AM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

AOA Emphasis On Faction Synergy

When Heroscape first came out, one of the things that surprised me was how much of the synergy between various Army Cards was cross Factional. A Faction being those units loyal to a particular General. I had expected more of it, as some of it is, to be within a Faction. With the rationale that a team of Scape characters--called an "army" but really a smaller tactical team--would have practiced together to use its special powers as a team, I thought about playing a game--I think I tried it out once--which allowed characters to expand their bonding abilities beyond particular personality or other types to all members of their army/team. I thought it would allow for interesting army building, back when there were far fewer C3V customs available.

[B]One of the things that strikes you when you look at the new AOA army cards if how much of their synergy is in fact for fellow Faction members.
You see it in all five new Factions. An exception is Anitar's Kyrie customs. I just tried them out for the first time as an army themselves, which didn't work well, because in the spirit of Raelin, most have "Auras" or powers meant to interact with other nonKyrie types. In keeping her customs close to a Raelin model, which makes sense for them, they are however the exception to the rule! And of course their loyalty is to almost all different Generals. so they can boost up any Faction in their own ways.

So one of the reason I've temporarily limited AOA armies to all AOA Faction compositions in our first four specifically AOA sessions (except for Evil Raelin's allies in two solitaire games) with the first eight 600 point armies I created upthread that we've been mostly using for the last couple of months, was for our players to get a feel for the cards, which notably included these Faction synergies. Now going forward, most of us have experienced this.

Currently Sherman Davies has said AOA will not be used in his game next month for February, but Kolakoski's March scenario will allow them. In fact, he says he's already built two armies which will combine AOA units with other Classics and Customs. And I know Thrasher Darkrai, out most active new member, has thought along these lines as well. So going forward I expect to see combo armies using these synergies, perhaps augmented by a Kyrie now and again!
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  #1479  
Old January 26th, 2023, 08:37 AM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

*Well pardners, we all had us a big shoot up yesterday, with two games of AOA. Yep, big doin's here at The Game Palace! There'll be photos and further information a-comin, but here's generally how it all went down in a Three Player Scape Extravaganza. *

The NYCG4 AOA Proxy Play Project Continues! We got a chance to learn a lot more about how the AOA cards worked, I revised the language a bit on my Zed Nesbitt custom, and reedited a sentence to the rules for Illusory Walls, which SD and K. both liked. We stayed in the same player positions for both games: Me at Map West (the new section added), Sherman Davies at Map South, and Kolakoski at Map North. Based on Thrasher Darkrai's photos of our last game on another free built map, I even laid out the central pond exactly, although I inadvertently turned it upside down.

Game One:

Chas: The Six Kyrie Army noted two posts upthread; their first appearance on the table. Thanks for the customs, Anitar!
Sherman Davies: Dawnraider Army #1
Kolakoski: Clockwork Army #2 (Win)

The other two players advanced toward each other on the far Eastern Flank, which left me out of the action for the first half of the ten turn game. They had already figured out that my Kyrie army would move slowly, especially if I kept to my playing style of keeping most of my army together in our games. Eventually I got a chance to get half of my army behind SD's main wall section. Since the other had taken casualties fighting and didn't want my slow advance to in effect allow me a "turtling" win, they then teamed up against me. Having evacuated the area where I had advanced, some of SD's Pirates returned to fight me. Instead of fighting on a larger hill outside his wall section, I fought him on a smaller two hex hill inside his wall. It was difficult to use the Kyrie as an army since they had so many Auras and other passive powers, but I did a creditable job. By the time toward the end we turned against K., who now had a point superiority, I was too far away to go after him, so we called the game, so we'd have time for a second one, as we usually play.

I learned a number of things about some AOA cards that I hadn't realized the first time I'd played them. Up to this point I'd put most of my energy into providing the physical wherewithall to play AOA rather than studying the cards, leaving that to the game experience with them. So the others, especially SD who I was more often engaged with, taught me the hard way!


Game Two:

Chas: The Brood (Win)
Sherman Davies: Clockwork Army #1
Kolakoski: Dawnraider Army #2

After a short dinner break bringing food up from the deli downstairs (where the staff knows us well), we played a more satisfying game with all three of us in the action from the beginning. This time I moved towards K. direction, but SD attacked me, so I peeled off half the army to go after him. He drubbed me due to his good playing and bad luck on my part. I was unable to hurt his Zed Nesbitt (my own custom!) who was defending on a Hill. Although K. said he dreaded my army--I'd warned them about Queen Maladrix The Conqueror, and of course there was talk about her previously on the site and the Avalon Hill play session where she infected and killed off a Bear Hero).

Then, counting up the points as we do once or twice per game to see who is actually ahead, we made a typical cease fire treaty against K. I healed most of the wounds on my Oathsworn Phalanx, and moved ahead with the Queen and her Festering Honor Guard. Although my Queen had taken two wounds from SD, I could hardly wait to infect some of K.'s four heroes.

But it was not to be. Stuck in the center in the pond when SD announced the end of our pact rather suddenly, he took out my Phalanx! My Queen took the chance of two Leaving Engagement Attacks, (which I take more often than some, but only at special moments) she got on the causeway bisecting the pond, and fought both other players at once with her double attack. She and a last Honor Guard survived a long time there. But when the Queen killed off some squaddies and finally reached a Pirate Hero, I killed him before I could infect him. Oh, well! I gloomily figured my game was over, having only the Dragoon left (untouched) and that one Honor Guard. Sherman thought I still had a chance. I didn't, but of course tried to play it out.

The endgame was very dramatic for me. I moved to Dragoon up to chase his last melee Bear around his wall, but suddenly two Ordo Borealis leaped out from behind the wall, which this game I hadn't checked visually. But although my Dragoon never got his Order Marker moving power, he did so well in regular attacks that he took them both out! Then, deciding not to turtle, even though I'll do it occasionally if it guarantees me a win, I brought the Dragoon out to face and take out his last melee squaddie! Since we were playing full card scoring, that hurt him badly. On the other hand, although I'd never made it to the Eastern area where Zed Nesbit had been fighting with K.s forces, K. had taken him out.

As the game drew to a close, I noticed that not only was my Guard still alive with his card's points, being a lesser target while others fought by him, and surviving several attacks that did go against him with great defensive rolls, but I actually also had a final Oathsworn Legionnaire that I hadn't bothered to activate with an Order Marker. The proxy for the Guards were Fyorlag Spiders, but for the Legionnaires they were small black plastic ants who blended right into the dark green hill and green bush he was on or next to. This put me way ahead on points. Given the final board situation, the guys granted me the win around Turn 9.

No one was more surprised by my win then I was. And since I managed to lose with the Brood badly against Thrasher Darkrai last time, I felt good that I'd won with that army this time around. Fear the Brood!


***

Sherman Davies took some photos to show the differences in the second incarnation of the AOA Mirror Map, and some action pictures of the games in progress. I look forward to seeing them, and adding some additional commentary. SD has to change the date for his February game, and we'll be setting a new one for his game.

Kolakoski was a little down about having to return from his vacation in beautiful and warm Jamaica, so we gave him a session to enjoy. He says he's got two combo armies in mind for his March game, which will include for the first time combo armies of AOA with previous Classic and Custom army cards.

Last edited by chas; January 29th, 2023 at 06:29 AM.
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  #1480  
Old January 26th, 2023, 09:48 AM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

Illusory Wall Rules 2.0
By Chas

This is a Scenario Rule, to be used in a particular game or not.

1. Wall Sections placed during map building may be Unglamored (Normal) Walls, marked as such by a White Marker. They may include all other castle features (see below), but not be connected to Glamoured Walls. A Glamoured Wall Section connected by a doorway is one section. A Glamoured Wall section with a break, even if it is visually continuing the same wall in position and direction, is considered to be two separate Wall Sections; each of which requires its own D20 roll.

2. Wall Sections placed during map building may be Glamoured Walls. These may include doorways with or without doors, but not include any other castle features such as Caps (therefore no figures can land on them), Battlements, Wallwalks, Ladders, or any Custom Pieces. Glamoured Walls act as Normal Walls until their D20 roll is made. Glamoured Wall Sections must be free standing; they may not connect to Unglamoured (Normal) Walls marked as such.

3. When a figures comes adjacent to a Glamoured Wall, it may roll a D20:

If the number rolled is Even, the Wall Section remains a Normal Wall for the rest of the game. Mark it with a Blue Marker.

If the number rolled is Odd, the Wall Section is an Illusory Wall for the rest of the game. Mark it with a Red Marker. An Illusory Wall blocks Line of Sight, but may be moved through. Count the space that the Wall takes up when moving through it.

4. After the D20 roll, which may only be made for one Wall Section in a figure's turn, that figure ends its turn, and can take no further actions. If the figure was a Squad figure, the other figures in its Squad make take their turns, if they have not already done so.

Last edited by chas; January 26th, 2023 at 03:28 PM.
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  #1481  
Old January 28th, 2023, 07:59 PM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

And now, for something completely different...even more new cards!

I've been so busy with AOA, that my pals had to tell me about the new set of C3V Heroes now appearing on the Home Page. And there are a couple of new SOVs I haven't noticed either. All of these 7 cards are now printed out, and ready if anyone wants to use them in Sherman Davies' game, now rescheduled for Sat. Feb. 4. And since AOAs will not be allowed for this game, it puts them even more in the spotlight.

I wonder which will appear on the table soon!

Last edited by chas; January 29th, 2023 at 02:39 AM.
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  #1482  
Old January 29th, 2023, 01:56 AM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

I want Kalagrith!!!

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  #1483  
Old January 29th, 2023, 02:46 AM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

I don't think I have a Golden Dragon figure. Feel free to buy one! I do have a two space based three headed silver one though. And various other extra dragons.

You mentioned her on your last visit. I wonder if more than one Kalagrith will show up on the table for the same game. We almost never duplicate a figure at the same time. But I do recall a rare instance of three Agent Carrs showing up at the same time! Mine was the last one left standing.

One of Anitar's Kyrie customs which I just used for the first time had a similar but weaker attack power to the new dragon's, only moving a maximum of 4 hexes instead of 7 for the special flying attack.
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  #1484  
Old January 29th, 2023, 08:36 AM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

Our February scenario will be a team game, with two teams and three players per team. Armies for this game will be up to 600 points and 26 spaces. All official and VC units are allowed, but not Age of Annihilation units. The map will be Alkali Lake Dam. There will be three glyphs (no special powers) evenly distributed along the length of the water. Except for Round One, the first team to either eliminate the opposing team or occupy all three glyphs at the end of a round wins the game. If no team has done either of these by the end of Round Ten, it's a draw.

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  #1485  
Old January 29th, 2023, 10:47 AM
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Re: The New York City Gang Of Four

Sherman has now clarified that this is a new version of his very cool dam map--we've used older ones in previous games. Also, that the Glyphs will be in the water, not on shore! He's also bringing a few armies for anyone who wants to use them instead of building his own. Although I've made one of my own, I'm going to check them out too, especially if we have time for a second game, as we usually do. Those Glyphs being in the water will certainly affect army building considerations for this scenario, although mine already took that possibility in mind.

Kolakoski has also made his army, and sent it to me. I now build his armies, since he moved into a smaller apartment on his Secret Island Base, and divested himself of his physical components. Luckily, I bought from him many of the customs he likes to use the most.

Chas just printed out the army cards for the newest C3G pack on the Home page, and also a couple of the SOVs he didn't do yet. All will be now available for this game and those to come. What a guy.
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