There are two parts of this AAR. A short story I write is in normal font, and actual report from the game is in italics.
The purpose is to test Imperial 100 points deck, which you can find here
The game is played on the large map, with all races, random cults, rare resources and specials, 5 points starting tile, 275 points decks.
Imperial Palace was a thing of beauty and awe. First time visitors, coming from huge, empty spaces of wastelands, always stopped in the main open square and looked around like children in cathedral. Wearing rags and protective armor welded, or even riveted from random parts they could find, they looked like they came from a different world, and truly they did.
The palace was a huge complex of buildings. There were greenhouses on the outstrips, to produce food, all kinds of factories, laboratories, barracks, and multiple offices to coordinate the flow of resources. Everybody has his place and task, and despite visible achievements there was still a lot of work to do.
Somewhere here lived the Emperor, but nobody have seen him for many years. It was a protection from assassination attempts, a lot of those has happened before. It's not, that nobody has heard him – everybody has his Mobile Communication device, and Emperor sometimes talked even with technicians at the bottom of the hierarchy. Few individuals, who knew history a bit felt odd about this – Imperial Palace made for people to use, and Emperor hidden somewhere in the cellar, or other equally fun place.
People around were not of any help for strangers. Technicians, clerks and soldiers, species extinct decades ago along with the rest of civilization, hurried in different directions, obviously alive and busy. Wearing tidy uniforms with their formation symbols they brimmed with kind of self confidence you got, when you’re fed, washed up, rested, and you know it will be so tomorrow. And above all, when you do something important. Not just for you, but for your children, for your friends, for your specie. They rarely talked about that, but they all feeled like this.
And that is, why newcomers felt so lost. But not that particular newcomer. She was medium height and slim, looked even something frail, but only for naive observer. Her moves was light and graceful, like steps of the dancer, but the only dance she has ever danced was a dance of death. The look on her baby face was saying: you made yourself comfortable, didn’t you?
Well, that’s at least what I thought it was saying, and it made me smile. She probably has seen this, when I approached, so she greeted me appropriately:
- Wipe that pervert smile out of your face. Who are you?
- I’m Zig Zac…
- Are you kidding me? What kind of name it is?
- It’s an identification name, easier than my true name. Just call me Zac.
- Ok, nevermind. So who are you?
- I’m Emperor’s Field Assistant.
- I’m Emperor’s eyes, let’s say.
- You consider yourself big fish, hah?
- Not really. Emperor receives hundreds of pages of reports everyday. What I see and hear is not always so significant. Come, I will lead you to dormitory, and we will think about your assigment.
- You think I’m going somewhere with you?
- Well, you did come here, and if you want to stay here you must do some work for the Empire.
- There is not such a place I can’t enter, if I want to. Or leave, for that matter.
- So what’s to worry? And we can use that talent. There is a school here, they teach special operations. Entering locked places among other things. It will suit you. By the way, what is your name? I must type it to your MobCom for identification purposes, you know.
- Valentine Kusanagi – she said reluctantly – and what is your real name?
- Szczepan Stachura.
- Geez, it’s nice you don’t require everybody to spell it.
- Yeah. I’m a nice type of guy. You’ll see.I’ ve started in the unusual way for me, placing my stronghold in the nearest place to the center of map. I will have easy way to get to both sides of map, but The Fist for example may crush me outright.
This is my starting position
No Industrial Center early, so I played a Leopard, and spotted independent outpost, the Trident submarine. A little too much luck in the beginning, but it could change, so I decided I will keep playing.
I took submarine in second turn, and played another Leopard, than sent them in the opposite directions. In the center (north from my HQ) there were three independent stacks. As it turned out it there was two independent facilities in the north, and also resources: energy and technology. On the left side of map Leopards stumbled upon Mutants. I killed their hero, and they kicked my sorry ass in return, then I caught their recon heading towards my HQ. Nothing special here.
- Hello commander. I’ve heard you will lead the first army of Empire to the wastelands. I was sent by the Emperor to inspect it.
- Doesn’t Emperor already know everything? He issued the orders, didn’t he?
- He is curious about your personal impressions with this new armor design, Leopard.
- It has some advantages. Just two men in crew…
- Just two?
- A driver, and weapon operator. As you see, the turret is just an armored gun, operator is sitting in the hull. It has low profile because of that, and is small overall, reasonably fast, has a scanning equipment, so is good for patrolling duties…
- And fight?
- With this armament we can take some critters in a heroic battle. Or outriders. Is Emperor expecting us to fight with this?
- Actually no…
- So I thought. We see anything bigger, we turn this fish can back and push the pedal all the way to the metal. Understood?
- Yes, commander.
- What is it?
- Good luck.I played Kost, as he was my only field commander, gave him EO + Cheetah + Leopard, and sent him to wipe up independents, and collect resources. As I also played IC turn 8; I had every resource beside humans, and it started really slow me down. My HQ was defended by the Leopard, Trident Submarine wasn’t defended at all.
On the right side I killed Critters, and then complete silence from that side, which infact gave me creeps. I was thinking up a scenario with massive stack heading toward my headquarter, and could do nothing about it.
It was not, that massive stack couldn’t came from the Mutants – if only they knew, where my HQ is. And with their stealthed heroes that was only a matter of time.
- Good morning, colonel Kost. I’ve come to personally deliver you an act of promotion to rank of general, signed by the Emperor. From this moment you are a member of Army General Staff, and you are included into Emperor’s reserve of field commanders. Do you accept the promotion?
- Yes, I do.
- Good, because you are the only field commander we have.
- Is it so?
- You’re the only one Emperor thinks is competent for now. He is impressed by your skill in maneuver warfare.
- I’m glad. And what does he think about my infantry design?
- He surely appreciates the name. Emperor’s Own. But he is not so susceptible for flattery. What’s so special about this formation?
- Actually it’s simple infantry. They have basic armor, which gives them some defence. What’s exceptional is their offensive training. The morale of new recruits is great, they are fanatic about the idea of Empire. So they attack much better. I also trained them in the risky way of massive attack. It will always bring us heavy casualties, but is also nearly unstoppable.
- I’m not sure, if I like the idea.
- I don’t like it either. I hope I will never order such attack. Nevertheless, it’s war.
- The next Staff meeting is in an hour. Shall…
- Hello, I am colonel Burwell Puller, and I made a new design of PBA forces. It will change the art of war entirely. If you just give me a minute, I am sure I will convince you abot that.
- Of course colonel, that’s my job – I replied, beacause this guy was really big, wore powered armor, and clearly wouldn't take "no" for an answer. Kost smiled and said:
- I shall go, must prepare myself.
- Please stay for a moment, I want to hear your opinion.
- Oh, his opinion will be negative. He’s is a proponent of his own formation, can’t praise my project, can he? This way I would be the first to the general rank.
I was quite impressed by the Kost's poker face, but only then I noticed strange Puller’s backpack.
- And this is?
- This is the core idea. This device makes possible an air assault. No more trench warfare, no more wading in the mud, surprise attacks easy to conduct! Cutting of enemy supplies, beating his artillery without the necessity of breaking through front line, and much more! So many possibilities to explore!
- OK. How does it work?
- Oh, it’s very easy. You start jet engine with this button… – and saying that Puller shoot himself straight in the sky. That was unexpected.
- The design needs some work, and he doesn’t have funds – said Kost.
That was unexpected, too.
- Oh. So you do like that design?
- It has its advantages, what Puller said was right. Yet it would take exactly 5 percent of our industrial capacity to design and produce powered armor and workable jet backpacks just for one unit. And single unit can’t do anything.
- I see. Thank you for your opinion, I won’t keep you anymore. Just one question: Vladimir Kost, is it Russian name?
- There’s only one nation left. Human nation.
To be continued, I think.