It was during this time that the Covenant War Fleet Tiberius appeared near Ammassalik without warning, in the wake of a mighty storm. Their incredible ships and curious weapons drew the attention of every merchant, mercenary and spy for ten thousand leagues - what were the notoriously isolationist Covenant of Antarctica doing this far north? They gave no explanation and answered no hails, but began scouring the sea between Greenland and Iceland for something, all eyes cast to the bottom of the ocean. In addition, they began unloading and constructing grand pylons and strange, glowing orbs in an area of open water beyond the eastern coast of Greenland.
Such suspicious activity, violating the Prussian and Danish territorial waters in the middle of a World War, could not be tolerated, and the Kingdom of Denmark despatched a small fleet to investigate, and if needed, attack the upstart interlopers. In the waters beyond the western shore of Iceland, Patrol Fleet Knarr came across an element of the Covenant fleet, a small flotilla negotiating an ice floe journeying south.
Battle would be joined amid the icebergs..."
- Echoes of Greenland - Encounter At Hellissandur
Naval Battles of 1872
A new fleet and a new opponent for the latest Battle Report, my friend Goth Craig has decided to give Dystopian Wars a go, and after a couple of small practise games, we're ready for something a little bit more substantial! 1000pts per side, on a 4x4 table, nice and simple.
This is an introductory game as much as anything, but I would be doing Craig a disservice to say I held back and let him have the win! Honestly it was a close fought game, and some of the dice rolling (for both of us) was ridiculous. Overall we had a good time, and I think it was a nice introduction for him. He's certainly interested in playing again, which was the real intention.
We did not pick any Field Objectives, as I imagined a straight skirmish would be fine for a practise game like this. The board was set with a central island and some drifting icebergs, nothing too complicated, with the Danish fleet moving on around the rocks while the Covenant fleet deployed down the centre, between two icebergs.
|War Fleet Tiberius|
The Covenant of Antarctica
One Aristotle-class Battleship
Two Fresnel-class Gunships
Three Plato-class Light Cruisers
Two Squadrons of three Plutarch-class Heavy Destroyers
One Squadron of four Diogenes-class Frigates
One Squadron of four Thales-class Corvettes
Two Squadrons of five Dive Bomber Drones
|Patrol Fleet Knarr, 1st Squadron out of Frederikshavn|
The Kingdom of Denmark
One Raggnarok-class Pocket Battleship with Shield Generator
Three Skaggerrak-class Gunships - one with UPG Generator and two with Raised Turrets
Three Sigurd-class Cruisers
Two Squadrons of four Korsor-class Mine Layer Corvettes
Two Fafnir-class Light Sky Fortresses with Tesla Generator and each carrying one squadron of four Fighter Planes
Three Squadrons of four Dive Bombers
|The Covenant of Antarctica deployment, with the Plutarch-class Heavy Destroyers dominating the centre|
|A force of Corvettes and Frigates sneak around the flank, hidden behind the icebergs|
|The Kingdom of Denmark deployment, with the island holding the centre|
|Cruisers and Mine Layers hold the other side of the island|
|As both fleets close on one another, the Heavy Destroyers and Gunships come under fire from the Danish turrets, suffering light damage|
|The Heavy Destroyers concentrate their fire on the Mine Layers, while the Energy Turrets of the Fresnel-class Gunships damage one of the Light Sky Fortresses|
|The Aristotle-class Battleship enters the fray, Particle Accelerator demolishing one of the Mine Layers while the Energy Turrets finish off the damaged Fafnir-class Light Sky Fortress|
|The Danish attempt to damage the Battleship, but are thwarted by powerful Shields|
|The Raggnarok-class Pocket Battleship is ineffective at this range|
|The Covenant Frigates and Corvettes continues their infiltration|
|The Covenant of Antarctica are holding back, waiting for their flanking squadrons to appear and keeping the Danish ships at arms length|
|A closer view of the damage suffered by the Covenant, even as a Danish mine explodes and destroys two of their Mine Layers|
|The Heavy Destroyers are forced into the path of another mine, and all three suffer damage from the explosion - none are destroyed, however|
|With powerful broadsides and turret fire, the Heavy Destroyers sink the damaged Gunship|
|The undamaged Sigurd-class Cruisers enter the fray|
|Their turrets finish a Heavy Destroyer and cause further damage to the other two|
|The second squadron of Heavy Destroyers engage the Gunship squadron, smashing another|
|A wide shot of the carnage caused by the two squadrons of Plutarch-class Heavy Destroyers|
|The Thales-class Corvettes cautiously advance, wary of the mines blocking their path. Their turrets ignite the magazine of the nearest Sigurd-class Cruiser, destroying it utterly and smashing the ships next to it - a brutal explosion!|
|Two Frigates skirt around the iceberg and send a volley of torpedoes into one of the surviving Cruisers, sinking it too|
|At this point the time was up and the game called - a brutal victory for the Covenant of Antarctica!|
|With only four ships still operational and some scattered tiny flyers, the Kingdom of Denmark have been outdone by the powerful technologies of the Covenant of Antarctica|
The game ended at that poitn due to time constraints, but looking at the Victory Points things had definitely fallen in the Covenant's favour - Craig had scored 670 Victory Points while the Kingdom of Denmark had only managed 235 Victory Points. A decisive victory for the Covenant!
Had the game continued, the Kingdom of Denmark may have managed to damage or destroy a few more of the Heavy Destroyers and may have even finished off the crippled Aristotle, but this would rely on some good rolls on my part!
CONCLUSIONS AND LEARNING POINTS
The Covenant of Antarctica proved their value at long range, especially the Fresnel-class Gunships! The Heavy Destroyers were probably his MVPs though, soaking up so much damage and throwing out some serious firepower with their turrets and broadsides. Overall, all of their squadrons achieved something worthwhile, while the Kingdom of Denmark suffered from some poor dice rolls and bad positioning.
My own playstyle with the Kingdom was pretty poor - I should have used the terrain to shield myself more, and Linked a few turrets where I had taken the risk to spread out my fire - not a good idea against Shield Generators with Inventive Scientists! Rules-wise the Kingdom work in a manner virtually unchanged from last edition. In future games, however, I am looking forward to supplementing their squadrons with some Lend-Lease Prussian ships, like the Emperor, Konigsberg and Stolz.
Losing the Fafnir-class Light Sky Fortresses so early in the game was bad form, especially with their two turrets each. Their tiny flyer squadrons were also not used, as they were placed too far away from the Covenant fleet. If we had reached three turns they would have made their mark, but that was too late.
The mine placement seemed like a good idea at the time, but again Craig held back with his fleet and I got greedy, placing them too far forward and too early where they would be relatively ineffective. Losing most of the Mine Layers before they could drop their mines was also a blow.
Particle Accelerators are mean! Anything that can strike more than one ship at once is always a psychological nightmare, regardless of true effectiveness.
Overall a bloody but informative game, always a lot of fun playing against Craig even when his long-range ships make a mess of my decidedly short-range fleet! Looking forward to the next, bigger game.
"...Patrol Group Knarr was smashed at Hellissandur and the Covenant of Antarctica continued their mysterious activities, generating huge energy readings that could be picked up across the globe. The Danes may have been the first Nation to react to this potential threat, but they would not be the last, and the Covenant now faced scrutiny from all of the Great Powers of the Northern Hemisphere..."
Thanks for reading,