Monday, 6 February 2012

Rogue Trader

Even though they are marines this picture is still awesome!
It’s Rogue Trader’s 25th anniversary. It’s been a decade or two between games. I had the hardcover book back in year 7. It cost $50, which was a lot at the time. I’m guessing I bought it myself but maybe my parents forked over the cash. If they did I am sure they regret it. My dad would cleverly call it Wham Bangers instead of Warhammer but I guess all in all my parents thought the hobby was harmless. Sure it would nix any chance I'd have of getting a date but there were worse things a teenager could be doing.

Iron Bonce the squat merc.
I hate this guy.
I would pour through the books and magazines trying to find the coolest things that would let me win. Vortex grenades, dreadnought suits, high level psionics would all be carefully added to my army list and the points meticulously calculated.

Army wise I really hated Space Marines. I think I did this just to be different. I guess hating the most popular army made me edgey and cool, at least in my own hormone addled mind. I bought blisters of all kinds of models with my paper round money. Orks, Eldar, mercenaries (including the squat with the rotating hand cannon) and old school Tyranids I’d settle on Imperial guard and Orks and take my badly painted armies to the local tournament at Melbourne Uni High. In those hallowed educational halls older folk would slaughter my troops with rorty crap like Harelquin’s hiding in ectoplasmic mist and whole armies comprising of just terminators with cyclone missle launchers.

Who's idea was it to give space marines cover?
Lately I've had a hankering for all things Citadel, 80’s Citadel. So me and a buddy from primary school, who I dragged into this miniature madness, got out Rogue Trader and had a game. Historically I won these battles as I was the only one who bothered to read the rules. As everyone depended on me to play the game I could conveniently forget rules that would disadvantage me. I was also a competitive kid so I’d argue lots if it looked like I was in danger of losing. I was crap to play against but somehow my friends would still rock up and play. I guess the models and the world were compelling enough to put up with my nonsense.

Thinning the herd.
So on Sunday we held a ‘Battle for the farm’ straight from the pages of Rogue Trader. The terrain consisted of boxes. A robot took the place of a damaged generator. My Tyranids were Ork proxies and plastic bags indicated where an orchard lay. Early on the Orks learnt to spread out lest they succumb to plasma missiles. I swore to kill the missile launcher punk as quickly as I could, but alas by the end of the game only two marines were slain and the missile launcher operator was not among them. The one time I got a wound on him his wretched power armour saved.

Deploy on the pizza box.
Heading for cover far too late.
At one point well after the game looked over, the sole remaining ork squad along with Hruk the Ork back up boss, hid out in the orchard only for my buddy to use rules against me! Or cruel reversal of childhood fortunes. Some rule said he could fire at models that were hidden as long as he did so with area effect weapons. And so the ork’s refuge turned into a roiling plasma orchard with the final two survivors making a mad dash for freedom, routing off the board. The Orks were smashed in an embarrassing display. Fortunately the Ork leader had called in reinforcements before he was sniped by the space marine commander. Only two marines would escape the field before an overwhelming amount of orks arrived.

Now I have a difficult decision. Do I being to build a small squad of Rogue Trader era models or do I continue to build my mini chaos warband. Hmm, after looking at those pictures perhaps I should invest in some terrain.


  1. why yes - two grown men spending quality time bonding over a game involving their little men does sound a bit...

  2. yeah rocket launcher dude!!!!

    me thinks some realistic scenery is required next time :)


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