The mission was No Retreat, where the defender has to hold two objectives with only half of their force against the full might of the attacker, and hope for timely reserves. James won(?) the roll to be the attacker. We also had a high chance of sandstorms so I expected short range mayhem for this game. The defender wins if, after Turn 4 or thereafter, there is no attacking unit across the center of the board or at the end of Turn 8. The attacker wins by seizing an objective.
Turn 1: Sandstorm! I set up my defenders, holding Nikolai and a Matrioshka in ambush. All other units are in reserve.
James' troops set up on one flank.
I quickly get reserves as James advances.
Nikolai springs his ambush from behind the palm trees, but fails to kill the rightmost Mao, leaving it with one damage point.
MGs from Nikolai's walker savage the nearest unit of SSU infantry. Note that ALL of my reinforcements made it onto the board on turn one.
Turn 2: Storm continues. James gets initiative and pops off a shot at my Matrioshka through the storm, but fails to hit and//or the shots bounce off cover..
I fire on the Mao with Nikolai, hitting twice. The sandstorm absorbs a shot, and James rolls for 5 points of damage resilience...
...can you say 5 saves?
James' other Mao advances, mauling some poorly placed men of mine in the front woods. What was I thinking?
However a long shot from my Matrioshka eliminates the damaged Mao!
James advances infantry to threaten my other flank.
Turns 3-4: Storm continues. James fires on and eliminates some of my mercs with Red Guards.
But the angry ladies lay into the Red Guards with grenade launchers, killing 4!
More Red Guards advance, and eliminate my infantry in the palm grove.
My Matrioshka peeks around the corner, wiping out the Red Guards with MG fire...
and hitting the remaining Mao for 4 damage. It's alive!
The Mao advances, failing to damage my Mao, but felling a Heavy behind the wall with MG fire.
My Mao fires back, and completely misses James' Mao despite 3 sustained fire (re-rolled) shots! The MGS do hit a few of his troops, however.
I advance the Saboteurs to try demo charges on the crippled Mao..but they miss! James is in the game as he is over the line at the end of Turn 4. But not much is left in his army.
Turn 5: I roll initiative and Nikolai finally blows the Mao sky-high, hosing down James' remaining infantry for good measure.
We call the game, with James' remaining troops retreating full speed for the nearest
Conclusion: I won the game, with a rather commanding 79-7 kill point score. This scenario is very hard on the attacker, especially as I got all my reinforcements on turn one and was able to win the AFV battle.
Tournament result: With two victories and a draw, I was the first place finisher in Dust Battlefield! Bryan, my second round SSU opponent, and Bob an Axis player, tied for 2nd place. I am not going to lie...I had some great luck in this tournament. I made some great saves against Richard's Axis, got a clutch replacement vehicle against Bryan, and won the roll to defend in the final scenario versus James, all big breaks for me. Dust is a very fast and brutal game, and the vehicles were key on this terrain which was (naturally for the desert) quite open. Whoever won the vehicle battle was likely to win the scenario. I was very lucky to tie Bryan, who had been winning the attrition war and had me on the back foot until I got the replacement tank. Thanks to all my great opponents and especially to fantastic TO Patrick D., who provided all the terrain and ran the event very smoothly.
To celebrate my tourney win, I bought this gorgeous pre-painted little number, the Red Ace!
copyright Dust Studio Limited 2015
OTHER STUFF: I took a bunch of shots of the other things I saw. Sadly none of the other tournaments because I was playing at the same time they were. Here are some of my better pictures of the day.
Patrick D's fantastic Axis army...which I did not get to play against!! Next time, gadget, next time!
I played a pick-up game against Joe M. on this gorgeous table on Sunday.
Got an early kill on his command vehicle.
Then lost a walker!
My brand-new Red Ace unleashes a barrage of rockets.
Then she got shot down...by the damned PanzerPrinz!!
He also smoked my other Matrioshka! I lost that game hard!!!
I met a very nice lady girl cosplaying DeeDee, the Dust Devils International mascot. Yes, she has a boyfriend.
Thee was also a HUGE participation game called "The Thing" where we all had to meet objectives while our forces slowly became corrupted by an alien influence
James and I lined up to shoot the hell out of Patrick D. Which we did.
Later James turned into a Thing and blew up my tank! Good times.
DUST Pinball anyone?
Bottom line: The Dust community is alive and well. This is especially so thanks to the dedicated efforts of people like Rick I., Patrick D., Greg W. and the Dust team themselves. I had a fantastic time and was happy to spend a weekend playing one of my favorite games in one of my favorite settings. Winning some things was just icing on the cake for me. I did buy a few new toys which need painting now. Watch this space for more Dust action!