Thursday, 4 June 2015

[6mm Science Fiction] Imperial Marine Battalion Combat Team Part 1

Followers of my Modeling and Painting log will be aware that I have been steadily plugging away at my 6mm Science Fiction forces. The goal is for me to be able to field ground forces for my Traveller campaign.

Imperial Heavy and Medium Tanks and Imperial Marine Company
I have pretty much completed my Imperial Marine and Imperial Army forces as per a rough TO&E I had worked up for the Imperial Marines and the Imperial Unified Army, have made progress on the Geithurian Republic and Huiha Esoyatre forces, and have made a start on the Kalar-Wi, Vargr and the Ssra'Ka Aissr - a  Reptilian race.

And, after a lot of consideration, I'm looking at using Dirtside II from Ground Zero Games for my basic army building and for combat rules, with bits of 5150 Battalion Commander from Two Hour Wargames for set-up and solo play.

The basic premise I have been following is that all forces used off-world in my Traveller campaign range from Tech Level 12 to Tech Level 15. All vehicles are Grav vehicles and troops are equipped with either Combat Armour (from Tech Level 12) or Battledress (Tech Level 15) - what Dirtside II classifies as Powered Armour - though TL15 troops can also have Combat Armour.
Imperial Marine Company (red Body Armour) with
Imperial Unified Army Company in the background
Imperial armoured units favour energy weapons (plasma and fusion guns in Traveller and Direct Fire Fusion Guns - DFFG - in Dirtside II). These design limitations posed a bit of a challenge under the Dirtside II vehicle design rules and resulted in a few compromises that I hadn't anticipated. To reflect their access to higher technology, I designed my Imperial vehicles with two Levels of Stealth, which makes them harder to hit in combat.

Having painted up a reasonable number of infantry stands, tanks and other vehicles, I began to get a feel for how a Battalion Combat Team might look on the table, and with some vehicles and basic units constructed as per the rules, I then began to play around with organisations to work out what "sized" game I might get from the units I had created. I just could not envision what sort of bang I was going to get for my buck.
Imperial Unified Army Company and Armour
I wanted to create an optimum TO&E to show what I might expect, points-wise, from a unit at full strength. Now, I know that some folks loath army points, believing that scenarios and TO&Es should drive game play. Having never played Dirtside II, I had no real idea of the relationship between various sized units and the technology that they could deploy. If a Marine unit, for example, is so effective, it might be prudent to deploy a company rather than a battalion, as the other companies of the battalion might be deployed usefully elsewhere. Points wise, the effectiveness of the Marine Company should be reflected in its points cost - you might only be able to afford the points for a company, but that company might be able to successfully stand off a battalion of "lesser troops" in a straight up fight.

After some preliminary tinkering, I created an Imperial Heavy and Medium Tank, a Command APC, a general purpose APC and an ADC (Air Defence) vehicle for my Marine Force.

Next: Marine Vehicles and TO&Es