Ridere, ludere, hoc est vivere.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

HistoriCon 2012: Borg Attack

Thursday afternoon at HistoriCon 2012 saw me in command of Star Fleet's task force at Wolf 359, assigned to stop the approaching Borg cube that threatened Earth.  The task force consisted of approximately twenty capital ships and perhaps ten interceptors.  The fleet focused nearly all firepower on the Borg propulsion systems to slow its progress toward Earth.  The Borg destroyed a number of Excelsior-class and other major starships with its torpedo missiles and did considerably damage to the fleet with beam weapons and collisions, but our unrelenting focus on propulsion turned out to be successful, as we rendered the cube dead-in-space outside weapon range from Earth.

Photo courtesy of Mister Nizz
Used by permission
The game was sufficiently short that we had time to repeat the scenario twice, with slightly different Star Fleet orders of battle for each case.  The Borg reached Earth without significantly slowing down in the second run, and destroyed the entire defending fleet in the third run.  (The last Star Fleet commander to go "down" with his ship was my friend Doug M.'s nine-year-old son, who put up a good fight but was no match for the Collective.)  We were all assimilated.

Game Master (GM) Steven Johnson had set up a table of head-turning visual impact, using a black felt table cover divided into large hexagons with a number of planets and asteroids as obstacles to movement.  The starship models were WizKids Star Trek HeroClix: Tactics miniatures.  The Borg cube appeared to be a scratch-built cube that was huge relative to the ship models.  The rules were based almost completely on the boardgame Ogre (designer Steve Jackson, various artists, publisher Steve Jackson Games), except that the combat system was identical to that of HeroScape.  The result was a classic Ogre situation - everybody trying to stop the big bad guy by plunking away at it and doing damage while suffering tremendous casualties in the face of superior weaponry.  It was a fun game, with some light tactical considerations and a lot of dice-rolling (as is typical of attrition combat systems).  


  1. Paul, you really should have been there to play Steven's "Starship Troopers" games. They were awesome.

  2. Oh, I just remembered that when Steven was briefing the rules to the game, he said something that was my quote of the day: "You don't look old enough to remember Ogre."

  3. Steve Johnson is very local to the convention center and kinda sorta local to me. He used to run games at the GAME PARLOR years ago with a club he created called the Empire Club-- you constructed giant landship style steampunk tanks and fought each other in matches. He's a great guy and a very clever and creative designer. I was very happy to see him-- he inspired me to finish and run MY conversion of the OLYMPICA microgame that has been on a back shelf for a while.

  4. That sounds very cool. Yes, I really enjoyed Steve's style; he made Wolf 359 a lot of fun and very accessible to anyone who walked up to the table.

    I used to be a weekly regular at Game Parlor playing De Bellis Antiquitatis myself. I still show up there after work for the occasional boardgame (and plan to be there Wednesday, in fact).

  5. And thanks for the use of the photo!