Thursday, April 12, 2018

Tricks of the Trade - The Chaos Campaign II

The newly formed Green Hippo Rangers, an organization of mismatched freedom fighters and desperadoes disguised as a mercenary command, ran into early problems with their independent resistance against the Word Of Blake. How does a loose confederation of militias, rebels, and special forces operators fight against an enemy with cyborgs, ships, battlemechs and other force multipliers?

Unfairly, of course.

The ComStar special forces immediately recognized they could not train the other constituent elements of the Rangers to their own standards, so they instead focused on shaping a strategy around what said elements were capable of. As mentioned previously, these ComStar peacekeepers were unusually competent. Plus, with the resources available to a special forces unit as well as a (admittedly small) planetary government and its opposition, some...underhanded cross-discipline tactics became available.

For instance, the ComStar unit had electromagnetic stealth cloaks, which effectively hid squads of power armor from detection by all but the most sophisticated of mech sensors. The rebels were adept at trap building, and the Llamrei II militia had an engineer team. A cloak that could hide power armor could just as effectively hide a pitfall trap or demolition charge. And a pitfall trap of sufficient size can hamstring a battlemech just as well as it will a human. Likewise, a demo charge that can fell a bridge will prove more than adequate to disable most combat vehicles.

In a short time, this particular stretch of the Chaos March became an 'unlucky' posting for members of the Word Of Blake Armed Forces. And while their early, painless, successes netted the Rangers a good haul of salvageable equipment, as well as much needed funds from the sale of said equipment, it also marked them as a target of interest to more...sinister elements of the opposition.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Green Hippo Rangers - The Chaos Campaign I

Hey all. Just working to outline the history of the 'mercenary' unit I am going to be creating for the Hot Spots Chaos campaign I plan to run in the near future. I put mercenary in quotes there because while the Green Hippos are technically a Merc outfit, I feel like the story I am shaping for them makes them a sort of quasi-planetary-militia type force on long term contract to a non-aligned local government, or something like that. I forget how the chaos campaign actually starts, so bear with me as I smooth out the bumps.

In any event...

The Green Hippo Rangers

The Green Hippo Rangers are a peculiar sort of amalgamation of irregular local insurgents and ComStar peacekeeping forces. The story of how they came about is long and tumultuous, but can be summed up briefly (and potentially non-profanely) as 'Stuff' Happens. 

In early 3067, in the local cluster surrounding Terra, there was an inhabited moon of no real political or military significance named Llamrei II. Until, of course, a Blakist instigated uprising against the local governance instigated a cry of help to ComStar. ComStar, always eager to have a near eye view to their wayward brothers on Terra, dispatched a 'peacekeeping' force of unusually competent special forces and power armored infantry to intervene. When the late unpleasantness began issuing from Terra, the local rebels, loyalists, and ComStar forces were caught unprepared, abandoned, and forgotten by all interested parties, and left to see to their own defenses, as it were.

In all fairness, there was little ComStar or the great houses could do to retrieve the ComStar unit in the early chaos, but when you are knee deep in Blakist cyborgs and atrocities, fairness is probably the last thing on your mind. So, the unusually competent peacekeepers came to an unusual solution. They struck a deal with the local government and the rebels, and as one, defeated the Blakist forces attacking Llamrei II.

Such a reprieve could only be temporary, and the coalition force knew it. So they painted new logos on their equipment, a green hippo. This is claimed to be a highly obscure reference regarding the name of the moon itself, though no one can confirm it as such. Posing as a mercenary command, they struck a deal with a passing civilian Jumpship fleeing rimward from the horror of Terra, and headed outsystem.

Since the escape, the Green Hippo Rangers have struck a series of minor defense contracts with non-aligned governments in the Chaos March, typically clashing with Blakist support units or the militaries of Puppet Regimes. While not professing any loyalty to ComStar or any of their previous allegiances, none of the Rangers forgets what exactly put them in this position, and who the real enemy is.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Setbacks and Setforwards. Of Minor Personal Tragedies and Big Ideas.

Okay guys. Some of my projects have now been back burnered and entirely dropped. I've been promising more R.E.D.I. adventures, and I still plan to deliver on those, but they've been pushed back as I simply don't have the time or energy to really jump on it.

The Adventures of Captain Crunch have been, if not dropped entirely, then burnered even further back than R.E.D.I. Sad to say, it's not my first, nor likely my last big project idea that really never got off the ground. I never even got around to making a model of the brave Captain.

Jousting Tournament? Completely Dropped. Wish it wasn't the case, but there was so little interest in this, it was dropped in all but name already. Now I've just come out and said it.

So what's been going on with me here to cause all of this consternation? Well. In short version, my wife's glasses broke last weekend. No biggie, we were planning on getting her to the eye doctor soon anyway, this just made the timetable shorter, and more stressful. Expense. The next day, the water heater broke. Expense. When we got that fixed, my wife muttered the fateful words "well, I hope nothing goes wrong with the car."

It's her fault really.

Next day, the brakes went out on the car. Expense. I have remedies for some of these in the long term, the problem is they all hit us in the short term. So I am broke, stressed out, and in general exhausted and in no mood to game, write, or interact verbally with human beings.

So what am I planning on the hobby front? Well, there's one thing I have been meaning to do for a long time, and that's the Chaos Eternal campaign tracks from the BattleTech Hot Spots sourcebooks. Now that I have completed the collection recently, I was thinking of going back through, creating a mercenary company, and really going all of the way through the series.

The neat thing about these campaigns, is that instead of a fixed enemy compsition, the enemy is based on a multiplier of the forces the player brings to the table. This means if I bring only infantry and power armor, the enemy will only have infantry and power armor, or maybe light vehicles. I always thought that was a nice touch.

I still have to decide what rules I want to use to actually run the campaign (not limiting myself to BTech), maybe BattleTroops, maybe something esoteric. This is a neat little thought exercise in its own right. We'll see what shakes loose. I'll try to make updates on the progress of this campaign as I make decisions on how I want to proceed.

Wish me luck guys.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Jurassic World Evolution - First Person Dino Tycoon?

So, I have been following this rather lightly since it was announced at E3 or whatever. I like dinosaurs, I like video games. A Jurassic Park video game has the potential to be very exciting business for me.

On the other hand, a lot of dinosaur games are the worst form of drivel.

So now that actual gameplay demos are out of Jurassic World Evolution, it seems like the game is shaping up to be a kind of hybrid between a park management or 'tycoon' game, and a first person game where you can take control of your RTS style units to tranq and transport the specimens yourself.

I don't know if that's the whole game, or if there's more hidden below the surface, but for now, it's intriguing enough on its own merits. Also, amusingly, Jeff Goldblum is reprising his role as Ian Malcolm. Fun times.

In all honesty, however, I was hoping for a first person shooter/survival game. There's not enough dino stuff in that genre that is good, or recent, or either.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Still Sick, But Coming Back To Life

Well, ladies and gentleman, inanimate objects of indeterminate gender. I'm still not feeling tippy-top. Sorry for the unintended gap in regularly scheduled posting. See, the Dr had me go back to work, then my symptoms worsened and varied, then they had me out again, then I had a bunch of tests, then I got more medications, then they had me go back to work again...

Really, it was a rough week.

But anyway, I seem to be coming out ahead of this thing at long last. As many of you know, I was intending to have the forces of REDI combat the army of gingerbread men as the earlier poll decided. Also, the Metal Gear Survive adventures are about ready to be kicked off, as the Captain's name has been decided (Crunch, for those of you who missed it. I blame, and love, you guys!). Expect to see more material on this front shortly.

I should, in all honesty, have been able to churn some of this stuff out already, but in the case of REDI, it takes a bit of setup, and with how sick I was, just wasn't feeling it. I also have to decide what kind of terrain I want this battle to take place in. I would love to make a snowy, North Pole type of setup, but I'm not sure how to pull that off.

In the case of Captain Crunch, I need to actually make a figure of her, as well as decide how I want to make enemies for her to combat. I was thinking of seriously just using random minifigure bodies and putting a transparent red block on the neck instead of a head. Voila, instant wanderers.

Let me know what you think.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Cool Stuff My Daughter Drew - Agent 1

It's sometimes easy to forget, what with how much I get wrapped up in my own projects, how talented the other members of my family are. In this instance my daughter, the Bunny Fett. Here she's drawn Agent 1. I presume that's a character from Splatoon. She knows a lot more about that than I do, but didn't see fit to explain it to me.

She's so funny.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

10 Years Of All Things Fett - Big Plans & How I Ruin Them

Hey all, Counterfett here. On this day, ten years ago, my beautiful wife Makoace, started this blog for posting for one of her online job ideas, which sadly never panned out. At some point, later that year, my website stopped working, and friend of the blog Mario! recommended I use blogger instead, as it was easier to use and saved better. So the wife and I switched usernames, and I became THE Counterfett. Ironically, the old website is still live, and works better now probably than it did back then, but that's a story for another time.

In any event, this is a big landmark for me, and fills me with equal pride and sadness. Pride, for sticking with a project this long, even if it has veered around with course and interest changes a bit over the years. Sadness because of the drop in traffic and loss of friends that came along with that. Several of my good online colleagues have 'gone dark' over the past few years, and with no "IRL" way to check upp on them, their fate is a mystery. I hope they are all doing well!

Now, with all that out of the way, I had planned to have a big writeup of a solo game to post today. I was going to run and photograph the forces of REDI vs the Evil Gingerbread men that I promised a month or two ago when that big poll ended. However, my wretched luck got in the way. I got sick in the middle of last week. The doctor classed it as a upper respiratory infection (ie a cold), and cleared me to return to work after one day out. The day I spent back at work was horrible and agonizing, and when I returned home, my wife made me call again.

Well, it's still an upper respiratory infection, just a much more serious one. They pulled me from work for a few more days, and I am currently in the middle of a Makoace enforced quarantine. This means, sadly, I am bored, deprived of socialization, and not able to do a heck of a lot for myself. So, sadly, the grand tale of REDI vs the Gingerbread Men will have to be told another day.

I hope, in its place, you have enjoyed a look back at the banners I have put together for the place over the blog's lifetime. I used to change them a lot. I've had the current one up since 2011, because it seemed to fit the character of the blog quite well. It's been a fun run, guys. If you go all the way back with me, thank you for sticking with me. If you're a new friend, thanks for stopping by, and I hope I will make the forthcoming adventures as worthy of your time as the past ones have been for me.