Archive for the ‘Scenarios’ Category

On New Editions and 21st Century Changes

Posted: April 22, 2017 by Lord Commander Militant of the Imperial Guard in Events, News, Rules, Scenarios
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And so it begins…

Games Workshop has announced the 8th edition of 40k. Unsurprisingly it draws somewhat on their experiences with their (eventually) successful experiences re-booting Fantasy Battle into Age of Sigmar.

And, of course, a lot of people are losing their minds, preparing to rage-quit etc. etc.

One of the first things I did was read their FAQ on the new edition to get some kind of idea what they were going to do. The second thing I did was think on what this could mean – for our events, for the hobby, for my own efforts etc. The third thing I did was to call Christian – the fellow with whom I run Astro.

So – what does this mean?

Well, let’s take a (capsule) look at what GW has said. The game will be changing. This is a major rules changes that necessitates old Codex books going by the wayside. So – very strong game changes not just ‘tweaks’. GW is also breaking the hobby out into ‘Free Play’ (throw models down and shoot stuff – much like the old unbound, I expect), ‘Narrative play’ (build your forces in themes and campaigns from the 40k universe) and what amounts to Competitive or Tournament play.

I don’t expect Free Play to amount to much. By and large players like some structure. This might be okay for teaching folks, but I wouldn’t expect to see much more of it than that.

Competitive/Tournament style play – this is interesting stuff. GW is taking back the competitive scene from outsiders such as the ETC and ITC crowds. They will have their own lists designed for competitive play, likely limit over the top combos etc. This is very much going to change that side of the hobby. I expect a lot of the ‘broken’ stuff to get taken out. Those playing versus play are likely going to have to really learn how to play their armies. Broken combos will get fixed lickety split. Many very good tourney players will welcome this as it will really emphasize skill. – That is – if it turns out this way. This one – the execution is going to be very important. However GW has promised to look to the community for changes and feedback. It may take them time to get it right – but I think their hearts and minds are in the right place. They will get there – and the hobby will benefit from it.

For Astro, of course, well we’ve always been about Narrative play even while we put the aegis of a ‘tournament’ over it. From the very first Astro the crazy scenarios and the fact that people didn’t all play the same scenario meant that the ‘tourney’ style play we did was a very different experience from more conventional events. I think, at first, even we ourselves didn’t realize how much. Yet a lot of people embraced our vision.

For us – the organizers of Astronomi-con – we have a really unique opportunity. Christian and I are going to go ‘back to the drawing board’ with Astro. We are going to carefully outline our philosophies and, in the light of an entirely new system – we are going to create from Astro – which began as a ‘v3’ tournament long ago – an entirely new creation focused on narrative play, enjoyable times and crazy fun. We will still support our core philosophies of keeping everything above board and out front, crazy fun narrative story based scenarios and having people play armies which are as evocative of the 41st Millennium as we can manage. Within those bounds – we are going to do our best to create something new, cool, and hopefully totally unique – and fun as heck out of the new edition.

Change need not be a bad thing. With all change comes opportunity and this one looks to have a great deal of wonderful opportunity for event organizers like ourselves who have long had a hard time balancing the narrative and competitive aspects of play. With them neatly separated by the rules set, we can focus on what we do best and really try to create new adventures, battles, and wars in the 41st millennium.

Welcome to the New Age. Cadia has fallen. Biel Tan broken. A Primarch has risen and daemon princes stalk the stars. We’re going to take that stage, dress it up and bring your armies to it!

Objective Markers

Posted: July 5, 2016 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Events, Hobby, News, Scenarios
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TheImperiumBesieged

As part of The Imperium Besieged, players will be required to bring two objective markers which will be used in all of the scenarios.

These objective markers should be on bases between 40mm and 60mm in size.  Players are encouraged to create objectives which are thematic in nature and suit the army being played.

We hope to offer an award for Best Objectives at the event, which would be voted on by the players.

Astronomi-con Toronto 2015 – Registration Now Open!

Posted: May 8, 2015 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Events, Hobby, News, Rules, Scenarios, Terrain
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Registration for this year’s Astronomi-con Toronto event is now open!

We have been debating the exact format of this year’s tournament for the past couple of weeks and have decided to go with a more traditional format which excludes Lords of War.

There are a few updates to the website which are still underway, so expect a few changes over the next little while, but we wanted to get registration open to allow everyone to get signed up and allow us to prepare for the event.

We would like to add some more sponsors to support this year’s event, by providing terrain, prizes, or both.  If you or your organization are interested in being a sponsor, please contact the organizers.

We look forward to seeing you this summer!

v7 Update: Scenarios & Warlord Traits

Posted: June 23, 2014 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Events, News, Rules, Scenarios
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As part of  the changes brought by the new edition of the game, we have seen fit to revise the tournament format as follows:

Scenarios will once again feature a Primary and Secondary Objective format. With a Win-Draw-Loss component based on the Primary Objective, awarding 9-5-1 Victory Points respectively.  Secondary Objectives will be unique for each scenario and award up to 6 VP for each scenario.  So, players can score between 1-15 Battle Points for each scenario they play.

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We have updated the way Warlord Traits are handled, lifting previously banned Warlord Traits.

Warlord Traits that provide a Victory Points bonus will be allowed, and any Victory Points gained by these Warlord Traits will be combined with other Secondary Objectives.  In these situations players can only ever score up to the scenario’s maximum allowance for Secondary Objectives.

Other special rules that generate or deny Victory Points for a player’s army will be handled on a case by case basis and will be covered in the FAQ section of the website.

First Blood Part II

Posted: June 19, 2014 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Hobby, Rules, Scenarios, Tactica, Uncategorized
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In the first part of this article I covered the more obvious points about the First Blood Secondary Objective in the Eternal War and the Maelstrom of War missions.

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Some deeper topics I will cover here in Part II include the influences that First Blood has had on army design, scenario design, and competitive play.

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First Blood

Posted: June 19, 2014 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Rules, Scenarios, Tactica
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First Blood was first introduced as a secondary objective for the Eternal War missions in sixth edition and remains a staple in seventh edition book missions.

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first blood
n
1. (Military) the first killing or wounding in a fight or war.
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Tactical Objectives

Posted: May 28, 2014 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Expansions, Hobby, Rules, Scenarios
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The new edition of Warhammer 40,000 includes a new set of missions titled Maelstrom Of War. These missions use the new Tactical Objectives which create a more dynamic set of victory conditions.  These Tactical Objectives appear in the rulebook as a set of tables, but Games Workshop also has released these in a handy card format.

If you’re like me, you want your Tactical Objective cards to last a long time (at least two years, right?!) so keeping them protected and in good shape is going to be a consideration.   Thankfully, they come packaged in a nice robust case.  This keeps them safe and sound between games, but during games the cards are going to be handled and shuffled countless times leading to wear and tear.

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A New Edition Of 40k

Posted: May 26, 2014 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Events, Expansions, Hobby, News, Rules, Scenarios
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Seventh edition is upon us, and as with all of the previous edition changes, Astronomi-con will once again evolve.

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We will be reviewing the new edition and updating our tournament format and scenarios to take advantage of all of the new options and rules.  For those that have attended our events over the years, these sorts of transitions have not had a huge impact on our players, and we expect the feel of the event to be much the same.

In the coming days, we will be reviewing the ruleset, and determining what changes to the format will be required.  As we decide on specific tournament changes, we will announce them here and on our mailing list and social media to reach as many of you as possible.

We welcome insights and opinions from our alumni regarding the new edition and encourage our alumni to share their ideas on our mailing list or social media and discuss the new edition.

Transitioning the event to a new edition is something we’ve done already three times in the past, so players should not be concerned about how a new edition might impact the tournament.

We’ll have more to share with you all very soon!

Astronomi-con Scenarios – A Beginner’s Guide

Posted: March 7, 2014 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Events, Hobby, Scenarios, Tactica, Terrain

For players new to Astronomi-con one of the biggest adjustments is the diversity of scenarios and the concept that every player will have a different mix of scenarios to play over the course of the tournament.

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Why do we do it this way?  There are more than a few answers to this question.

Theme: First and foremost, I feel that we want scenarios to work with the terrain they are played on. This helps a great deal with immersive story-telling, and allows us to be creative when doing scenario design. Of course, we have a large number of ‘generic’ scenarios which are not dependant on terrain, so this leads us to another facet of the answer.

Diversity:  Having a wide range of styles of scenarios is also an important part of why we have a different scenario on each table. Some armies are good at one type of mission and can be really challenged when faced with a scenario that isn’t “what the army can do”. This forces players to stretch.  Whether in the form of designing more well-rounded armies, or getting players to expand their abilities as a general, a wide range of scenarios makes things more challenging.

Competitive Balance:  We often say that a player will likely encounter one scenario that is ideal for their army, four scenarios that they have a fighting chance, and one scenario where they will be extremely challenged. Of course, it doesn’t always turn out that way, but we’ve found that it is generally how it goes.  As such, it is very rare that a player manages to win all of their games – which we think is a good thing.

Player Experience:  With a different scenario on each table, each player will almost always have a unique group of scenarios that they play when compared to their peers. This certainly makes for a more diverse player experience each time they participate in one of our events as events in different cities will have different scenarios, as well as from year to year locally.

So, for those new to Astronomi-con and its diversity of scenarios, what should a new player look to do to get familiar with Astronomi-con’s style of mission?  The answer of course is to play some!   We’ve made a large number of missions available for players to download and enjoy.

Some suggestions for those new to Astronomi-con:

Astronomi-con Army Design

Posted: March 6, 2014 by The Master of the Adeptus Administratum in Events, Hobby, Scenarios, Tactica

MR_Astro_Fists_Logo_240x226Over the years and editions we have seen all kinds of armies take on the challenge that Astronomi-con presents with its varied scenarios, terrain, and the tournament format itself.  As an organizer, I thought I would share some insights into what I feel armies need to rise to the occasion.

Scoring Units.   Certainly there is no big surprise here.   Scoring units are essential for securing static objectives and holding table quarters.  Most armies will have at least three or more scoring units.  These units are generally the backbone of an army, and will serve you well at Astronomi-con.

Mobility.  Many scenarios involve not only moving to secure objectives, but also getting to various locations on the battlefield.   Transports, Bikes, Cavalry and Jump Infantry are the most common type of mobile unit, but this role can also be covered by deep striking units, outflankers, and infiltrators to help ensure you get to the parts of the battlefield where units are needed most.  Consider investing in things like dozer blades to overcome the inevitable difficult terrain which you may encounter.  This can also present you with some tactical advantages to keep your opponent off-balance.

Warlord Trait.  With the ability to select your own Warlord trait, players have unprecedented ability to build a strategy around their Warlord trait, or use it as a means to shore up a perceived weakness in the force, or for scenarios which your army may be perceived as at a disadvantage.

Flexibility.  Having different types of units in your force can give you the edge not only from a composition score standpoint, but also on the tabletop.  Being able to get more out of your units can result in a decided Victory Point advantage in the long run.  At 1500 points, armies simply cannot take all of the units they could possibly want, so some real tough decisions need to be made – and as such units that can get more than one job done often become the new heroes of the battle.

In closing, I feel that it is important to select a force that can challenge not only your opponents, but yourself as well.  In the wide range of possible scenarios you will face at Astronomi-con, a force that can adapt and overcome will be far more satisfying to play with – and against.