I'v been looking for a set of sci-fi skirmish rules for a while; I have a Space Marine force painted up, but I can't seem to get into the 40K rules.
After reading a few reviews, I decided to give Blast Pistol a try. Coincidentally, fg's Rogue Stars arrived soon after we decided to play a game of Blast Pistol, so we tried both sets of rules on Monday.
For the Blast Pistol game I used my marines (3 squads of Unity Banner Troops) and fg used the Imperial Guards he got on a trade (3 squads of Colonial Militia, 1 Unity Infantry squad, and a Unity Agent). The mission was simply to take and secure the shed in the middle of the table.
|Shootout in Shantytown!|
|'And they shall know no fear."|
|How did that crate take his weight?|
Fg and I picked two pre-generated crews from the rulebook. Fg took a squad of police, while I picked an ex-military character with a few droids, but tweaked the stats to make her a close-combat expert.
The game is more detailed and complicated, with detailed stats and traits for each of the figures, so instead of fielding around 20 figures each, we were using only 5 figures each this game.
The scenario involved fg's crew trying to reach a vehicle on the opposite table edge from his deployment zone, and my crew trying to stop them.
|The cops soften the opposition with a hail of fire.|
The use of d20 produces rather wild results, and fg's crew leader was killed by the first shot from my droid early in the game, so we decided to re-roll that and carry on instead of restarting the game. Then the big droid on my side got one-shotted. The cops kept up a steady pressure and crept up on my position. Things were looking grim for my side.
Then looking at my leader's traits, I decided to take a gamble. Using her Fast trait, she dashed out of cover, double-moved to the enemy leader, and using her Weapon Master 2 advantage cut her down in two rounds of combat, and then dashed back into cover again. The sudden reversal of fortune caused one cop to flee off the table, and the remainder were no match for my leader when they got close enough to the vehicle.
The two games are of course very different. Blast Pistol is closer to the 40K style of game where the winning strategy seems to be bringing weapons to bear, while Rogue Stars has characters so detailed that it can actually serve as a set of combat rules for a role-playing game - the number of factions, types of weapons, armour and gear, and the number of traits you can assign to characters makes this look like a game that will reward the player who invests time and effort in the creation and development of his crew.
I can see myself reaching for Blast Pistol when I want to put a few dozen figures onto the table and fight a platoon-level action, and I can also see myself taking a crew through a campaign of Rogue Stars.