Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Adeptus-B

Actual Tank-Based Campaigns...?

54 posts in this topic

No one seems to have mentioned Sven Hassel here. Legion of the Damned, Wheels of Terror and so on are all about a tank crew full of interesting characters having "adventures" in the grim darkness of the second world war. His books have been my greatest inspiration for OW in general.

 

Imagine playing a group of penal legionnaires with a tank all their own, sneaking away from the main force to go rob a bank - in a leman russ.

Brother Anselm likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That is why I donot allow for Support specialists as PC's.

I want to run OW, not a collage of strange characters.

I'm going to risk this, even though I shouldn't, and hope that this doesn't turn into an argument, but have you played Deathwatch, and do you disallow specialists there, too? Chaplains, Librarians, and the like are only HQ, so they don't often run with "regular" Space Marines, either. A beatstick HQ Ind Char CAN attach himself to the Tac Squad, but probably won't, and then the IG equivalents are the same ability. Most SM armies don't field "________-in-training" Libbies, Chaps, Apothecaries, or senior Techmarines, just like IG doesn't train fledgling Psykers, Priests, or Commies.

 

And now I'm done, so yay ;) If I were playing, and my GM said NO Psyker...er SPECIALISTS, I could still certainly come up with several ideas to play, if not my preferred option (special snowflake syndrome-patient), and Hammer's advanced options, such as Commander and MoO are both very nice, so it does work; it just sort of feels like a limited 40K game without them, especially when the others, each as thinking it follows fluff it doesn't, seems to have a decent integration of specialists. maybe have to stick to Rogue Trader, where EVERYONE is a special snowflake. ;)

 

****

 

If I were playing a dedicated Tank campaign, I'd fail; even there I'd try to have a split of them, the tank, and some other transport vehicle, so some people are outside the Leman, but still able to keep up, maybe in a Tauros, with bikes, or Rough Riders, so some infantry is able to guard their steel behemoth, and have something to do, while not all being one of twoish character types. Not saying it's right, or even easily doable, but I'd hate to have a party wedged into a Punisher, just shooting bad guys with a PGC.

velocity83 likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For the record, Radwraith made some very useful suggestions about using tanks in a different thread. Check out the 12th post in this thread.

 

-And thanks for the heads-up about Sven Hassel, Magellan. I'll definitely look those books up!

Edited by Adeptus-B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the shout out Adeptus-B!  Glad it helped!

 

As to not allowing specialists? I don't think I'd go THAT far! I just don't think I'd want one crewing the tank! Especially a MBT like the Leman russ! It would certainly make sense for a Commissar to ride along in some games, (preferably in a tank with an odd-numbered crew like a Chimera!) and I would say the Tank based game is one of the few places that a Tech priest would have a regular roll! (In an odd sort of way he kinda replaces the medic!) The thing is, An Enginseer loses a lot of his efficacy while trapped inside a tank. He certainly can't repair much of anything from there! If my game were going to feature an Engineseer, I would leave him outside the tank! I would hope that he would be the odd player in the game. (IE; If I were running a game with the above mentioned Leman Russ, I would hope for 4 players so one could run the tech priest.)I would of course compensate the player with some neat toys (Powered armor comes to mind!) and generally speaking, Bad guys aren't going to target the clanky little red flag when there are tanks flinging death and mayhem all over the place! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A Commissar could easily replace a Tank Commander.

BYE

Sure, but in game terms a Commisar has no comrade. I realise that this is hardly a deal breaker, it just forces the Gm to do a little more work. I would assign a faceless and relatively non-productive NPC as the loader, (No comrade abilities). but that's just me!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whether you need the Comrade or not depends on the layout of the tank. You need two PC's for the turret, and one Comrade to act as loader (so that can be a Commissar + Operator w/Comrade... and I'd imagine that there aren't many players out there who want to play the turret's loader). Then the driver is another Operator, and that gives them another Comrade who care fire the front gun when the driver is doing other things. If there are no sponsons, and that does happen, then you don't need anyone else. And if there are sponsons, then that's one more person who can control any of the two sponsons and the front gun, and another comrade to control whatever that final crewman isn't.

BYE

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you go by Shield of Humanity's rules for Ogryn/Ratling World characters, you could make an armoured regiment crewed by abhumans. Really silly, but it depends on how serious you want your 40K I guess.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whether you need the Comrade or not depends on the layout of the tank. You need two PC's for the turret, and one Comrade to act as loader (so that can be a Commissar + Operator w/Comrade... and I'd imagine that there aren't many players out there who want to play the turret's loader). Then the driver is another Operator, and that gives them another Comrade who care fire the front gun when the driver is doing other things. If there are no sponsons, and that does happen, then you don't need anyone else. And if there are sponsons, then that's one more person who can control any of the two sponsons and the front gun, and another comrade to control whatever that final crewman isn't.

BYE

???...Maybe I'm not reading your post correctly! Commander/Commissar + Main turret gunner in turret. Driver + loader(Comrade) in hull. Sponson gunner + Sponson gunner(Comrade) in sponsons. Is that what you're trying to say? If so, sure, that could work. It just means you drop one comrade! I didn't mean it couldn't be done! I was actually defending the idea that specialists would have a place in the game! My normal layout for a tank crew is very similar but an actual tank commander (Typically an operator or Sergeant) is in that role and his comrade serves as loader. Main gunner is PC while sponson gunner is comrade. Driver is operator while comrade is other sponson gunner.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Whether you need the Comrade or not depends on the layout of the tank. You need two PC's for the turret, and one Comrade to act as loader (so that can be a Commissar + Operator w/Comrade... and I'd imagine that there aren't many players out there who want to play the turret's loader). Then the driver is another Operator, and that gives them another Comrade who care fire the front gun when the driver is doing other things. If there are no sponsons, and that does happen, then you don't need anyone else. And if there are sponsons, then that's one more person who can control any of the two sponsons and the front gun, and another comrade to control whatever that final crewman isn't.

 

???...Maybe I'm not reading your post correctly! Commander/Commissar + Main turret gunner in turret. Driver + loader(Comrade) in hull. Sponson gunner + Sponson gunner(Comrade) in sponsons. Is that what you're trying to say? If so, sure, that could work. It just means you drop one comrade! I didn't mean it couldn't be done! I was actually defending the idea that specialists would have a place in the game! My normal layout for a tank crew is very similar but an actual tank commander (Typically an operator or Sergeant) is in that role and his comrade serves as loader. Main gunner is PC while sponson gunner is comrade. Driver is operator while comrade is other sponson gunner.  

 

If you are going with no sponsons and a Commissar as Commander, then three players would be ideal: Operator (Driver)+Comrade (Lascannon gunner), Heavy Gunner (battlecannon)+Comrade (loader), and Commissar (commander)- who doesn't come with a Comrade. If you swap out the Commissar for a Sergeant, rather than dumping his Comrade you could have him be the tank's Vox operator (a role that a Comrade will have to do 'double-duty' on in my proposed build).

 

That said, it seems like losing sponsons would really reduce the fun of tank combat.

Edited by Adeptus-B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

If you are going with no sponsons and a Commissar as Commander, then three players would be ideal: Operator (Driver)+Comrade (Lascannon gunner), Heavy Gunner (battlecannon)+Comrade (loader), and Commissar (commander)- who doesn't come with a Comrade. If you swap out the Commissar for a Sergeant, rather than dumping his Comrade you could have him be the tank's Vox operator (a role that a Comrade will have to do 'double-duty' on in my proposed build).

 

That said, it seems like losing sponsons would really reduce the fun of tank combat.

 

Exactly!  :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We started, but didn't get far - more due to availability than anything. The players were the crew of a Vanquisher attached to a tank company and reporting up to the captain. (making them veteran-ish specialists, hence occasionally detached as fire support, ambushers, artillery spotters, etc).

 

It was a four-player team. 

  • Tank Commander - Sergeant
  • Driver - Operator, Sponson Gunner Comrade on Port Heavy Bolter
  • Lascannon Gunner - Operator, Sponson Gunner Comrade on Starboard Heavy Bolter
  • Turret Gunner - Heavy Gunner, Loader Comrade

It worked pretty well. The sergeant didn't have a comrade to direct but was busy directing everyone else plus manning the pintle heavy stubber, so it all worked out fine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It worked pretty well. The sergeant didn't have a comrade to direct but was busy directing everyone else plus manning the pintle heavy stubber, so it all worked out fine.

 

Cool. How many tank combats did you play out? And did your players enjoy their roles within tank combat, limitations and all?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We started, but didn't get far - more due to availability than anything. The players were the crew of a Vanquisher attached to a tank company and reporting up to the captain. (making them veteran-ish specialists, hence occasionally detached as fire support, ambushers, artillery spotters, etc).

 

It was a four-player team. 

  • Tank Commander - Sergeant
  • Driver - Operator, Sponson Gunner Comrade on Port Heavy Bolter
  • Lascannon Gunner - Operator, Sponson Gunner Comrade on Starboard Heavy Bolter
  • Turret Gunner - Heavy Gunner, Loader Comrade

It worked pretty well. The sergeant didn't have a comrade to direct but was busy directing everyone else plus manning the pintle heavy stubber, so it all worked out fine.

Nice! Did you by chance use the combat guidelines I posted earlier? I'm curious to see if it worked for you!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No one seems to have mentioned Sven Hassel here. Legion of the Damned, Wheels of Terror and so on are all about a tank crew full of interesting characters having "adventures" in the grim darkness of the second world war. His books have been my greatest inspiration for OW in general.

 

Imagine playing a group of penal legionnaires with a tank all their own, sneaking away from the main force to go rob a bank - in a leman russ.

Isn't that just Kelly's Heroes in space?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

FWs lengthy dissection of the Leman Russ has it as follows, and this is what we did:

 

Commander, gunner, driver, loader.  (no sponsons, we used armor skirts)

 

Driver controls the hull armament, gunner and loader the main armament, commander fights the tank and also serves as vox operator.

 

For those who do not understand what 'fights the tank' means, the commander is the only member of the crew with a clear field of view in combat and issues orders to the rest of the crew to keep from getting blown up.  This is very important in general, but particularly street fighting against orks as the party withdrew toward the Temple of the Emperor Ascendant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

It worked pretty well. The sergeant didn't have a comrade to direct but was busy directing everyone else plus manning the pintle heavy stubber, so it all worked out fine.

 

Cool. How many tank combats did you play out? And did your players enjoy their roles within tank combat, limitations and all?

 

 

Quite a few. We played the Against the Savages mission, which worked out well - disembarking from the transport, trekking off to the refinery (they picked up the stormtroopers and had them play tank-riders, so they had someone to man the wall defences when they got there), taking the refinery and defending it.

 

We played an adapted form of the 'behind enemy lines' mission from the GM's kit, too - mostly because I wanted to do The Beast in 40k.

 

It seemed to go fairly well. The Sponson gunners are arguably more important, because the attack forces always include both battlewagons and buggies and infantry, which the heavy gunner can't effectively engage. Taking a vanquisher specifically stops him having the "anti-everything gun" and makes those heavy bolters vital for keeping you alive.

 

Also, tended to make them fight in the open every so often. Orky antitank mines are lethally powerful and blatantly obvious - but can be crept through by infantry - so sometimes they need to advance on foot to reach an objective.

 

Plus we had one big massed battle. About a dozen tanks plus one super-heavy bulling its way through the middle of the fight.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps as a little bit of inspiration I'll leave this here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q94n3eWOWXM

 

I also advise to consider a combined arms situation between regiments from the same world.  For instance the IA Forgeworld series does depict the Death Korp as primarily siege regiments, however they also had armored and mechanized regiments as well.

I suggest this purely as taking steps toward understanding how a tank based campaign could work by simply phasing it into the game.  SO in this instance a few Player Characters might be from a mechanized Cadian regiment fighting along side PCs from a DKoK Tank regiment.  This can allow you to still incorporate all elements of the game and allow a glimpse into what problems may have to be trouble shot and if the group will actually enjoy being a purely tank based group.  

Of course this all depends on the size of the group in the first place :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

FWs lengthy dissection of the Leman Russ has it as follows--

 

Which specific Forge World book has the 'lengthy dissection of the Leman Russ'? Imperial Armour, I'm guessing? If so, which volume?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Which specific Forge World book has the 'lengthy dissection of the Leman Russ'? Imperial Armour, I'm guessing? If so, which volume?

Volume 1 covers ig. The crew roles are on pages 34-35 IIRC in 2nd Edition.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You could have 2-3 operators (dependent on vehicle) manning the tank and that's it. Just make it fluff that one one is the Sergeant or commander. 

 

1 PC driver, comrade hull mount.

2 PC Commander/ pintle mount,Comrade Main gunner/loader. 

3 PC Sponson 1, Comrade sponson 2. 

 

Mix and match for personal preference. Any medical needs would be taken care of by NPC's post contact. Repair taken care of by PCs and NPC Mechanicus.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But would players enjoy that, with only one 'character class' allowed? Like I said earlier, RPGs depend on variety to hold players' interest. -And how would you like to be the 'lucky' player stuck being 'Right Sponson Gunner'...?

 

The point of this thread isn't to find the rock-bottom minimum that a tank-based campaign can squeak by with; its to find fun options that will hold players' interest for long-term campaign gaming.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0