Vanguard (Bill): 5 Samaritans, Reaver, Grenadier, Morgan Vade.
Strain (Brian): Brimstone, 3 Quasimodos, 6 Revenants
Once we set up the Board we rolled for deployment, and I won and set up first. As soon as we had deployed, however, a slew of questions occurred to us. The Vanguard objective was to bring 4 civilians to the train tile. The Strain needed to infect 6 civilians and bring them all "within 2 squares of one another." Without clarification it would not be possible to play the game. I will list our questions and the solutions we came up with.
- How are civilian counters infected? The rules state any attack automatically hits and kills them. So if that's the case the only way the Strain can infect them is with nano counters, it would seem. Solution: We played that Strain could infect civvies with CC attacks that cause infection.
- How exactly must the Strain arrange the civilians in order to win? "Within two squares of one another" is rather vague. Solution: We played that as long as a chain of civvies exited where each one was within 2 squares of another, this would qualify. Otherwise they would have to occupy a discrete 3 x 2 square area.
- Can the Vanguard just kill 4 of the 9 civvies to create a situation where the Strain can only hope for a tie? That is, if they kill 5 the Strain cannot infect 6, but the Vanguard could still theoretically ave 4. Solution: We played that civvies could not be attacked other than to infect them as above to prevent this kind of game-y result.
It was frustrating to see another scenario that was not clear enough as written to play off the shelf, but we figured out some quick patches which seemed to make the game work for us.
On turn one the Strain advance rapidly to tile 2, and infect 1 civvie on Tile 1.
The Vanguard advance on turn one full speed to get to tile 2, reasoning that the game will be decided by the 4 civvies there.
On turn 2, the Strain infect 5 more civvie models, for a total of 6 infected civvies. They set up a fiorward defense of tile 2 with the three Quasimodos and the Brimstone ready to react.
Here's tile 2 before the Vanguard assault
On Turn 2 the Vanguard storm the breach. An overload shot takes down a Quasimodo and a Singularity Grenade hits the second Quasi.
On turn 3 the Strain move 4 civvies toward a game-winning formation. The two front Samaritans take a Vitirifier blast to the face. Then the Brimstone steps over and unleashes a Braced beamflare, damaging and corroding three more.
I apologize as in the excitement of the last few turns I forgot to take more pictures. On turn 4, the Strain activate 4 civilians and move them into formation. A Revenant finishes off the corroded Samaritan who tried to save the civvie. A braced and beamflare-d shot from the Brimstone hits Vade, who saves himself with his displacement field, still getting corroded. Another Samaritan is caught in the blast and corroded. Five of the six necessary infected civvies are in formation and waiting for their last friend to join them.
On Vanguard turn 4 the Reaver focuses and fires 6 Rock n' Roll shots, liquidating the Brimstone on the fourth shot. A Samaritan ganks another Revenant, and the Grenadier wounds the Revenant closest to the disputed civvie but fails to kill it.
On turn 5 the Strain move a Revenant to draw the sole reflex shot the Vanguard have. The other Revenant who is on fire but not dead moves adjacent to and activates the civvie to send it toward the rest of the group. Another civvie is activated by the last Revenant and now all the 6 infected civvies are within 2 spaces of each other as we defined it in the beginning. This fulfills the condition for Strain victory.
Vanguard losses: 4 Samaritans
Strain losses: 3 Quasimodos, 1 Brimstone, 2 Revenants
Thoughts: This was an interesting scenario but felt less flexible than Scenario 7. It is less subtle than it might seem, however as there is going to be a scrum in the middle if the Strain aren't going to win a blowout. The center tile is where all the action is at. The Strain can get in a position to have 6 models infected by the end of Turn 2. So the Vanguard have to get in there and take at least one civvie away from them ASAP. I think if the Vanguard can get to Tile 1 then they must have already killed most or all of the Strain. There is really no need for them to spend activations moving the civvies on tile 1 until they have beaten the Strain in combat.
One more to go and we will have finally finished the Outbreak campaign!