So, the last post I put up was 4 months ago saying about how I was back and the blog would pick up again and all that. As you can tell that went really well! But fear not intrepid space battle fans, this time we really are hoping to be back!
After my last post I had to go into intense GW mode to get a 2000 point Iron Warrior army put together for the Heresy Weekender back in February and since then I’ve been in a mix of hobby slump and slowly working through the Iron Warriors. However, on June 25-26 Jon “Eternal Ocean” Gregory from my regular gaming group is planning on running a campaign weekend for the 6 people in the group. This has spurred the entire group back into FSA in a big way (Dan “August Doumerc” Smith has been going nuts trying to nudge us all to finish our fleets).
Campaigns have always been my weakness when it comes to hobby. The idea of doing a narrative weekend of gaming, developing a set of strong characters and caring about what happens to them and the fleet over a series of linked games is just the biggest slice of games imaginable. As such the chance to do one for FSA is putting models on my painting station once more!
I’ll try to keep you updated as we get closer to the Campaign itself with pictures of the various fleets and snippets from the other players so you can keep track of the build up.
Just a heads up that SG are offering a fantastic deal this weekend with half price mega sets! These sets are the ones that give you one of everything in a particular fleet at a standard discount of 20% off but this weekend only that is increase to a mighty 50% discount. You could pick up an entire fleet with every option for about £130! And if you buy one you also get the chance to buy all 3 hardback rulebooks at half price too.
So, if you are looking at getting into the game but been sat on the fence, or if you’re a current collector who is in need of a new fleet to play check it out here. It also applies to the Dystopian Wars equivalents in case you fancied expanding into another Spartan product.
Alas pay day isn’t for another week for me as I’ve been eyeing up expanding my Terrans and possibly starting Directorate (I have a problem, I know) or I would definitely be picking one of them up.
For those less financially constrained get in there and pick up some new toys, you’ve earned it!*
Until next time…
*ITSZ not responsible for excessive unpainted model syndrome, any and all purchases are the responsibility of the reader. 😛
We followed the co-ordinates given by Bilitas towards the Laurel System, in search of the boy Draykon Rense. We had assumed the Aquan foe had captured him, for they would not be foolish enough to let such a treasured prize slip.
Upon nearing our destination we were met by an Aquan fleet blockading our route. These ships did not meet the profile descriptions for the fleet we were expecting, and so Admiral Doumerc delivered a vox-comms message to request an audience with the Admiral of The Endless Wave, knowing that said ship was not present and hoping that bloodshed could be spared to allow our passing. Their response was silence.
The majority of our vessels assumed the ‘Mailed Fist’ formation while Sentinel Squadron probed from our starboard flank. The Aquans would not engage in a straight fight, instead working their way towards us under the cover of asteroid fields and gas clouds. They had chosen the battlefield that would suit them most and nullify our armaments. Admiral Doumerc regarded this as “a shrewd tactic”, one that he recognised and “admired”.
While we hurt our enemy it was The Legion d’Honneur who felt the most pain. The Terquai ships, allied with the Aqauns, proved formidable, our weapons for the most part unable to breach their armoured flanks. Never before had I seen such a fusillade unleashed as that which destroyed the Colossus in one terrible broadside; a ship of legend from the Age of Liberation, lost in an instant.
It appeared as though the loss of Colossus informed Admiral Doumerc’s decision to order a fleet-wide Fold Space Withdrawal, though it was plain to see that for many of our sister vessels it was too late. It was now imperative that The Ogre, the relic and beacon of hope that it is, escape while it’s crew still drew breath. The drives finished charging and we jumped, just as the logistics section of the bridge was destroyed with a vicious attack from the enemy flagship which would have surely sealed our fate. Admiral Doumerc was seriously injured in the attack, his lower left arm crushed by a console uprooted by the impact. We evacuated all crew from the bridge while the Hazard Team combated the fire.
We had managed to escape with The Ogre barely intact, but without any knowledge of where we had emerged and no idea as to the fate of the rest of the fleet. We drifted for days in this region of space toward what we could see as the nearest star system. The logistical servers were damaged beyond repair and all we could do was to continuously relay our distress beacons across all frequencies; Dindrenzi, Zenian, even resorting to Commonwealth frequencies. When we were finally alerted to an incoming signal it was with a feeling of trepidation, but by the grace of Dramos it became apparent that we found ourselves in the Ba’Kash-controlled Iaris System.
The Ba’Kash had sent scouts and salvage crews to the site of the battle with the Aquans. It became apparent that our enemy had left as soon as they had disabled all of our remaining ships, seemingly too preoccupied (or otherwise gracious in victory) so that they did not take prisoners nor undertake any barbaric deeds of execution. The rest of the fleet had transmitted beacons not only for rescue but also to find the whereabouts of The Ogre, fearful that it had not survived the fold space transit, where upon the Ba’Kash learning of our arrival had responded with affirmation and set about the rescue operation.
The Ogre was eventually rejoined with what remained of The Legion d’Honneur, where they moored in Ba’Kash shipyards for 10 months to undergo extensive repairs and refits. The Colossus was, as feared, completely destroyed, the catastrophic explosion taking Captain Sarrut and all her crew in an instant. We mourned their losses and for those of Boar, Sentinel and August Squadrons who had not returned. Admiral Doumerc issued a requisition order for all nearby Corsican fleets to send crew, ships and munitions to replenish what we had lost and bring us back to fighting strength. A response came from Commodore Losier of the Corsican 9th Storm Zone Fleet, who while currently engaged with Terrans in the Olympus Cluster understood the gravity of ensuring The Ogre had a full complement of accompanying ships. Again, his actions for the glory of our people is duly noted.
Our fleet had barely left the docks of Iaris before we were at battle stations once more. We were met by Sorylians, suspected to be Outriders for we believed them to have been gathering intelligence on the Ba’Kash territory, led by a ship on record as the Equinox Transcendent. Multiple incoming vox-comms alerts chimed, no doubt the fleet Captains requesting the order to engage and enact vengeance for what had befallen us 10 months previous, yet Admiral Doumerc once more offered a peaceful resolution to the enemy. Yet once more, the reply was silence.
Boar Squadron did great damage to the enemy flagship which The Bane of Tyrants duly finished off, while The Ogre viciously unleashed it’s newly forged weapons batteries to devastating effect across the field. The day was ours with minimal casualties, the Admiral’s strategy falling into place perfectly and leaving only one enemy ship operational; to return to it’s masters bearing the news and scars of defeat. With a great cheer of vented fury from all aboard The Ogre’s bridge, Admiral Doumerc opened the comms channels to address his fleet with the following message:
“Soldiers; there is not much more to say than that you have all acted with great courage and shown your strength of arms. It has been a relief for us all to avenge the losses we sustained and to right the wrongs of our humbling defeat, and today I am thankful to say that I have fought with you. Today, the Legion has regained it’s honour.”
A status report has been sent to Fleet Marshall Bilitas. For now, we set course to join forces with Commodore Losier and the 9th in the Olympus Cluster.
Guest Article written by Dan (August Doumerc on the forums)
Fantastic narrative wrap up of the results of August’s first two games of FSA! 1-1 is hardly a bad way to start an admiral’s career; pretty sure I was 0-5 until my first win….
Hoping to get a few more guest articles up from the likes of Eternal Ocean and Tibberg over the next few weeks detailing their exploits in the Firestorm Universe!
Alex over at Fleet Signal recently put up the latest images of the Air Helices for all the major races in Planetfall and they are something special! I’m a Dindrenzi fanboy but I really, REALLY like these new models!
Welcome to the next instalment from ITSZ. Today I’ve got a battle report for you all from this weekend past where the might of the Dindrenzi Federation takes on the Sorylian Collective. In one of the opening acts of aggression in the latest Zenian thrust into Kurak space the Dindrenzi have sent the 913th P.N.D. “Earthbreakers” under the command of Fleet Marshal Beta Draykon Rense (more on both the fleet and the commander at a later date) to lead the charge in the northern end of the Storm Zone, on the border of the Aquan Sebrutan, an area reinforced by not only Terrans, but the Sorylians and Aquans as well. Prior to any assault on a station or way point, the League and her allies first had to smash aside a considerable number of Kurak patrols and defence fleets guarding the border of the Storm Zone. In Draykon’s hatred of the Terrans, he had pursued one of the new Tyrant Class battleships into Sorylian defended space where it had joined up with a Sorylian battle fleet…
913th P.N.D. “Earthbreakers”
DNS Pride of Dramos (Praetorian Class Battleship and Flagship of Draykon Rense)
Remove Ablative Plating
High Energy Kinetics
Split Fire Gun Racks
5x Assault Shuttles
The Sisters of Sorrow; DNS Vengeance and DNS Mournful (Cataphract Class Battlecruisers)
-1 Turn Limit
High Energy Kinetics
Hurricane Squadron; DNS Hurricane, DNS Tempestuous Rage, DNS Storm’s Wrath (Secutor Class Cruiser Squadron)
Tempest Squadron; DNS Furious Tempest, DNS Steel Blizzard, DNS Iron Storm (Secutor Class Cruiser Squadron)
Canis Squadron; DNS Canis, DNS Hound, DNS Lupus
Jackel Squadron; DNS Jackel, DNS Anubis, DNS Osiris
Aquila Squadron; DNS Aquila, DNS Erne, DNS Opvic
TACs: Eye of Rense, Burn Thrusters, Perfect Timing
Sorylian and Terran Battle Fleet
Tyrant Class Battleship
+2 Point Defence
3 Interceptor Wings
Xiphos Class Carrier
2 Kontos Class Escorts
Unknown wings (they didn’t get a chance to launch…)
Hasta Class Battlecruiser
2 Reaper Class Frigates
Kopis Class Heavy Cruiser Squadron w/ 3 Ships
Reaper Class Frigate Squadron w/ 5 Ships
5 Plumbata Class Corvettes
TACs: Unknown, Admiral died quite quickly…
I lost the roll to decide table edges but won the roll for deployment, opting to deploy second. I then declared all 3 of my frigate squadrons in reserve, forcing Chris to put down 3 squadrons before I placed a ship and managed to counter deploy a large number of his ships. I know that Chris uses the scout rule but it only applies to one ship so I could assume that most of his ships would be where they started. At the end of the deployment the Sisters of Sorrow and Tempest Squadron deployed on my far left flank while the Pride and Hurricane Squadron deployed on the far right, setting up a pincer move.
Chris deployed his carrier on my mid-left behind the planet, his Battlecruiser squadron on the mid-right behind the first clump of asteroids while his Heavy Cruisers, Frigates and Corvettes deployed on the far right behind the second clump of asteroids. Initially, the Tyrant deployed in the middle, between the planet and central asteroid field as a bait to me before Chris used his scout move to shunt it to the far left into the gas cloud.
Draykon Rense observed the Kurak battle line, saw the trap of the Tyrant laid out ahead of him and responded in kind, taking the initiative and leading the charge. “Earthbreakers, engage the enemy. Fleet attack pattern Gamma-Epsilon-Omega,” his fist clenched unconsciously. “No Surrender. No Submission. No Terran Tyranny. Dindrenzi Forever,” he growled.
The Sisters opened the hostilities, moving up and drawing a bead at optimum range to the Sorylian Carrier. Today’s battle order called for beheading the beast before mopping up the remnants. Unleashing their twin rail guns in a pair of combined shots of devastating power, their slugs punching huge rents into the skin of the carrier, starting numerous fires and taking out the shield controls on the ship. The Tyrant responded in kind, emerging from hiding in the gas cloud and opening up with everything, striking DNS Vengeance across the nose venting a huge section into space, taking many unfortunate crew with it.
Rense, spotting the Tyrant’s signature reappear on the scopes as it moved from hiding, set the Pride’s engines to slow burn and moved to engage the Battlecruiser anchoring the centre of the line. Despite the considerable power of her main armament the shots bounced off the reinforced hull. Almost as an act of spite the twin torpedo salvoes targeted the Corvettes, the first skimming past the pack while the second slammed into one a midships and rent it apart. The Battlecruiser, rattled, but unscathed, from the assault she just withstood, brought her guns to bear on the Pride but the shots bounced equally harmlessly from her hull.
Tempest Squadron moved up in support of the Sisters, taking cover in the gas cloud ahead of them, now that the Tyrant had revealed herself she would be punished for it. Unleashing all fire as a synchronised chorus, the rail gun slugs slammed deep into the Tyrant’s hull, disabling her nearest weapon systems, their torpedoes launched a split second after but were shot down or slowed to nothing by the Tyrant’s defences and SRS cover.
The Sorylian Frigates engaged their drives to their maximum, skimming effortlessly around the asteroid field and into the flank of the Pride. A broadside rippled from each ship, munitions thundering across the void to rip superficial armour plating from the Pride, dealing minor damage even as Hurricane Squadron moved to intercept. Their kinetics aimed squarely at the Battlecruiser, shattering the front armour and decoratives but dealing no serious internal damage. Even as their slugs crossed the black their gun racks pivoted to respond to the assault of the frigates, shattering one completely from prow to stern.
The Corvettes swung around to engage the Praetorian at high speed, firing at full but to no effect while supported by the Heavy Cruisers who, at a considerably greater level of firepower, cored through the outer plating of the Pride and into the core systems, starting a fire in a secondary compartment.
The Sisters once again shattered the peace of the void, unleashing another twin salvo at the Admiral’s carrier, though unnecessarily. The first shot tore through the front plating of the carrier, finding a weakened seam in the front bulk head it struck the ammunition reserves buried deeply in the hull and igniting. The Carrier, with the Fleet’s Admiral aboard, was turned into a burning wreck of twisted metal; orbiting the very planet she was using for cover and beginning her downward death spiral into the planet itself.
The slowly expanding debris field that was their admiral’s flagship clearly invigorated the Sorylians. The Heavy Cruiser squadron continued to hammer the Praetorian, starting another fire, just as the last had been put out and causing considerable structural damage. The Pride rocked heavily, lashing out with all her guns but with only the gun racks showing any sign of being effective, ripping another frigate asunder.
Even as the Praetorian was taking heavy damage, Canis Squadron sped into the battle zone on the flank behind the Tyrant, aligning their guns as they had practised time again to bring down large prey, dealing only superficial damage to the aft of the Terran ship but no doubt confusing the crew and captain! Even as Canis began the encirclement of Kurakians the Sorylian Frigates continued their assault against the Pride but to no avail. Seeing the arrival of Canis as a trigger for action Tempest stormed from the gas cloud, but with the space born material causing chaos with their equipment their shots staggered rather than launching in their usual coherence. Even so, their aim was true. The first two shots tore armour plating from its mount while the third struck deep into the superstructure, taking out the shield controls.
Reeling from this onslaught the Tyrant struck back at Tempest Squadron but with the reduced level of fire power she now possessed her shots rang ineffective from their thick armour plates.
Hurricane Squadron recognised the danger that the Heavy Cruisers posed to the right flank, if they weren’t dealt with they could deal untold damage to the ships there. The kinetic weaponry fired as one, two slugs slamming deep into the hull of the lead element crippling her badly even as the gun racks tracked another Corvette and blew her from the black. Their torpedoes sped across the gap between the ships and exploded heavily against the outer plating of the Heavy Cruiser at the end of the line.
The enemy Battlecruiser yet again fired at the Pride, dealing further minor damage… but it was adding up fast…
The fires on the Pride continued to burn, raging from deck to deck. She was listing badly and Draykon knew it. “Seal the bridge, all unnecessary crew to the evac-pods then purge the decks. I can control her from here if I must. Fight on my brothers and sisters. Hurricane Squadron, survivors heading your way – I’m taking her into the teeth of the storm to buy you some time.”
The time spent organising the life rafts handed the Sorylians an opportunity. One they seized with relish. The squadron of Heavy Cruisers swept in, opening up at the now crippled Pride of Dramos, taking out further gun turrets and rail gun alignment magnets, reducing the power of her offensive capabilities still further. Draykon stood at his command console, the bridge crew sealed away from the vacuum outside, his ships crew either dead, escaped or within the sealed Assault Shuttles that lay waiting in her hanger for her final assault run.
He now gave them the all clear, the shuttles flying from the hanger as one aimed at the nearest Heavy Cruiser, knocking out the point defence and leaving her open to further assaults and torpedoes. The severely depleted rail gun rang out a final shot at the Battlecruiser, stripping yet more external plating while the remaining gun racks pattered ineffectively from the hulls of the Heavy Cruisers and the torpedoes were shot down despite the reduced point defence of the squadrons. As a final last ditch effort the remaining Marines on board the Pride sped towards the rearmost Heavy Cruiser and forced a decompression breach in her hull. Draykon knew it was a one way trip but the men went willingly, the fires of Dramos burned in their hearts as brightly as his own.
Listing badly, the Pride of Dramos made an easy target for the enemy Battlecruiser. Having crawled forwards to her optimum range, the lightly damaged warship unleashed everything she had at the Praetorian. The munitions tore deep into the Pride’s hull, dealing massive damage and shutting off all primary systems. The broken hull turning in the void, dark and alone.
The Sisters saw the bright flash from the right flank. Noting the demise of the Pride, they swung their guns through almost 90 degrees in their haste to get to their Admiral’s attacker. Their captains were far from rookies however, dropping a sizeable minefield just to the fore of the Tyrant ready should she choose to take advantage of the exposed engines of the Cataphractii. Yet, despite the superlative skill with which the ships were handled the shots glanced harmlessly from the armoured skin of the enemy ship.
The captain of the Tyrant saw the opportunity to fire into the exposed engines of the Dindrenzi Battlecruisers, blazing his engines to bring her remaining guns around. However, this was just what the Dindrenzian mines use as an activation. The ship’s motion pulling the mines to her hull before they detonated thunderously, reducing the once proud battleship to nothing more than a smoking wreck.
Even as the Sorylian fleet began to crumble with the Dindrenzi ships beginning to surround them on all sides, a further thorn appeared. Jackel Squadon shunted into the battlefield, deep in the Sorylian lines. The Battlecruiser had already moved out of arc but the enemy frigates lay in clear line of sight. Each ship picked a target, firing independently for maximum effect. The first ship blew an opponent apart in a single shot, while the second two crippled the remaining two until the torpedo volley finished them off. The deaths of the frigates galvanised the Corvettes into action, opening with a full broadside onto the unto now undamaged Hurricane Squadron, their shots doing little more than scratch the paint.
Hurricane squadron swung around the Corvettes and the remaining Heavy Cruisers, whose depleted numbers were starting to show. Even as they did so they dropped a sweep of mines across the prow of all the squadrons. Bringing their kinetics around to the enemy Battlecruiser even as the gun racks dealt the final blow to one of the Heavy Cruisers. Alas, the mass driver shots rebounded harmlessly from the durable enemy capital ship.
Tempest Squadron were considerably less effectual, spitefully taking shots at the remaining escorts from the Admiral’s Carrier group but the small ships evaded damage while Canis Squadron dealt superficial damage to the pair of them.
Captain Darga Fuegon of the DNS Vengeance took up the mantle of command with the Pride having gone dark during the battle. Issuing an order of extreme prejudice against the Sorylian remnants the ships closed the net, the two sides of the pincer closing tight around what little remained of the fleet. In short order the Dindrenzi fleet brought their combined guns around and unleashed all possible firepower against the Sorylians. The mines detonating amongst the Heavy Cruisers and Corvettes and even as the surviving ships attempted to flee they ran into the combined fire lanes of the Sisters of Sorrow, releasing a small portion of their never ending grief against the Kurakians. Whatever fire power that was able to be spared was aimed at the Battlecruiser, the venerable ship taking hit after hit with stubborn pride but finally succumbing to the damage, but not before dealing a fatal blow to the DNS Tempestuous Rage. The field was littered with Sorylian wrecks. Barring the two damaged escorts from the Carrier group not a Kurak ship moved in the battle zone. The fight was done. The Dindrenzi had triumphed.
Draykon sat in his command throne aboard the Pride of Rense; or what was left of it. He flipped absently through a book on military tactics he had started recently and not gotten around to finishing. The bridge crew were similarly engaged in menial tasks, keeping themselves occupied until a rescue could be enacted. The Pride had fallen. She was broken open and burnt; but she would rise again. Like the winged motif of the Dindrenzian Navy she would fly once more. The Sisters of Sorrow drew up to the bridge, extending docking clamps to either side of the enclosed capsule holding the only survivors of the battleships crew still aboard.
The airlocks on the side of the bridge opened and Draykon strode through the tunnel. Nodding briefly to Captain Fuego on the otherside before calling back over his shoulder to have the ship towed to the nearest dock and to be rebuilt. Exactly as it was… the conquest of the Storm Zone awaited and he would not be denied his revenge.
Final Score: 15 to -8 Dindrenzi Victory
The 913th had lost two ships in the course of the battle, the Pride and the Tempestuous Rage both reduced to wrecks. The Pride would be repaired but there was little enough left of the Rage to be rebuilt, what little there was would be reclaimed for material to build a new Secutor Class. The Sorylian fleet, however, had been reduced to two fleeing Kontos Class Escorts and so much burning metal. A win by anybody’s standards.
A long post but hopefully you enjoyed the narrative! Leave a comment below on what you think worked well and what didn’t and I’ll try and improve for the next one!