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Those of you who read my last Q13 AAR will know that I am currently playing “king of the ring” with my new sci-fi factory complex. Last game, the Felids defeated the Hauk, so now it was their turn to defend, with their opponents being the Aphids: frog-like beings from Zombiesmith.

My opponents were Dave and John, who were on a strict time limit which actually nicely suited the type of game we were playing: they would play the Aphid attackers, and would have almost exactly 2½ hours to reduce my position.

Opposing Sides

My Felid defenders consisted of a platoon of Prideguard veterans supported by three laser-cannon teams and a platoon of mortars on motor-carriages.

They also had a Whiskers reconnaissance drone to help them spot the incoming frogs, and a section of normal Felid infantry as a backstop.

This was not a very big force at all.

The Aphids, on the other hand, had a plethora of men…well, frogs. To begin, they had a three-platoon company of Aphid grunts supported by a section of mortars.

In support, they had a platoon of three small sections of grav bikes; a platoon of veteran scouts; and a two-section platoon of Aphids in armoured battlesuits.

A bit lacking in artillery, so on top of all the above, they could call in air support from a Tadpole bomber: a lovely model from one of the Spartan Games spaceship lines.

This was easily a five-to-one ratio to the Felid force opposing them.

As before, the terrain consisted of the factory complex on a raised platform surrounded by an alien landscape.

For those of you unfamiliar with Q13, the units are activated by pulling the poker chips you can see from a bag; and the blue pieces of card are Blinds, under which units lurk until spotted.

The Game

The Aphids began the game cautiously,moving Blinds up each side of the factory and only sending the Grav Bike Platoon into main complex itself.

As my Whiskers Reconnaissance Drone was having a bad day (there must have been something in the atmosphere: I didn’t make a successful roll all day) I decided to deploy my fixed defensive positions asap. This was to aid spotting and avoid the chip bag getting flooded with Aphid chips.

My forward gun (the one on the right, above) managed to catch an Aphid platoon as it scrambled up onto the factory platform, and hammered them badly, but then came under attack itself as a couple of sections of Grav Bikes boosted them up onto the same level.

My forward laser cannon disappeared, but I did manage to catch the Grav Bikes with fire from a laser cannon I had at the top of the tall tower: not a rate of exchange that I could afford to keep up.

Meanwhile, the final section of Grave Bikes had shot forward and was approaching the gantry where my main force was held. There were only six of the froggies in this section, so I send a squad of Prideguard forward to into melee: surely ten veteran Felids would make short work of the amphibians.

Apparently not.

My Prideguard squad was sent hurtling backwards, five of their number not returning.

Prideguard about to hit the Grav Bikes (below)

Worse, the Aphid Battlesuit platoon had found the accelerator button, and were coming around the corner towards my mortar carriages. Things were not going well!

All was not lost, however: by now I had his Scouts pinned down under the base of the big tower, and had already driven one section to flee.

Unfortunately I had forgotten about the Aphid air support. In swept a Tadpole bomber, and dropped a bomb right on top of the last cannon in the back gantry.

Although the bomb didn’t do a huge amount of damage, it did Pin or Suppress all my units in the blast radius, giving the Aphids time to get properly under cover.

I was now in danger of being swamped, no pun intended, with frogs coming at me from all directions.

Endgame

The Aphid Battlesuits had, by now, dealt with my one non-Prideguard squad, and were busy pulling bits off the mortar carriages. They weren’t doing this very well, but it was only a matter of time before the mortars were destroyed.

Aphid infantry had also got up onto the main gantry: they were everywhere!

At this point I surrendered: better to live and fight another day than be wiped out by green skinned throat-breathers!

It had been a good battle, and I had knocked out about a third of the Aphid force but, in the end, there were just too many of them for my Felids to deal with.

The key moment was probably losing the Close Combat with the Grav Bikes. Shouldn’t have happened and was a result of a bit of cat-like over-confidence. Should have just shot them to pieces from distance!

Well done to John and Dave, froggy commanders both, and next time it will be the Aphids defending.

Robert Avery