Scenario 13: Cat and Mouse
Equipped with three frontline Clan Omnimechs, the Dragon Claws returned to LAW city seeking revenge. Within the city’s sprawling industrial district, they found the remnants of the Clan Smoke Jaguar hunting cadre. Making no attempts at further subterfuge, the elite Draconis warriors engaged with their long range weapons, initiating a brutal battle.
In this battle the forces of the Draconis Combine were represented by a Hellbringer A, Stormcrow B and a Kit Fox B. All of the Mechs had received some damage during the previous battle, but would still benefit from the increased range and damage output that Clan weapons afford.
The Smoke Jaguar force consisted of a Shadow Cat A and a Cauldron Born Primary. The Shadow Cat A received 30 points of damage in 5 damage randomly assigned lots, to represent scars from the previous battle with Takashi. Likewise, the Cauldron Born started with 40 points of damage, including a 5 point hit to the head…
Cauldron Born Primary
The battle started with the Jaguars inside the city. The Draconis Mechs moved onto the mapsheet from the Rolling Hills end and manoeuvred to engage with their ER Large Lasers and Ultra Autocannons. During the first round of shooting Wade lined up quite a few shots but missed with everything. In return, the Shadow Cat A stripped armour of the Stormcrow with its own ER Large Lasers. The Cauldron Born targeted the much lighter Kit Fox in the hope of reducing the odds. A gauss rifle and medium laser hit put the Kit Fox in danger of being holed the next turn.
In response, Wade changed his tactics rapidly, aided by a much needed initiative win. The Kitfox moved to block my Cauldron Born sacrificially, leaving the Shadow Cat vulnerable. The Stormcrow charged within physical attack range of the Shadow Cat and unleashed its heavy autocannon and blistering laser arrays, dealing heavy damage. During the physical attack phase, both Mechs attempted kick attacks, which both missed. Both Mechwarriors failed their piloting skill rolls causing the Mechs to fall and take damage.
Bwah ha ha! Slapstick!!
My Shadow Cat lost its arm in the fall, whilst Wade’s Stormcrow took critical damage to its torso, sustaining two engine hits. Predictably, my Cauldron Born mauled the Kitfox, causing three engine hits and claiming the first kill of the night.
Kit Fox B = little guy with a big gun
The next few turns saw my Cauldron Born stalking the Hellbringer, which had found a place in cover to launch long range missile salvoes with impunity. The Stormcrow and Shadow Cat returned to their feet and blasted away at each other, though my little cat was seriously outgunned.
In the last turn the Stormcrow fired everything, jacking its heat scale all the way up to 28 in an attempt to annihilate the Shadow Cat and destroy the Stormcrow in the process, achieving the honourable death the Mechwarrior so craved (well, worth an extra 10 VP anyway…). Unfortunately, the Shadow Cat survived and had a golden opportunity to destroy the larger Mech in the return fire, but missed (curses, so much was hanging on that one shot!). The Hellbringer stepped out of its cover and lined up shots against both my Mechs, hitting with both fusillades. The LRM 20 caused enough engine damage to finish off my Shadow Cat, whilst an ER Large laser shot decapitated my Cauldron Born, thanks to the random hit it took before the battle (CURSES!).
Hellbringer A taking heads
Incredible! What a finish to the last Classic Battletech game of the campaign. Wade’s Dragon Claws have their revenge but are still alive to feel the shame of their previous failure. They would be on the hunt for a beautiful death in the final Alpha Strike game. When we counted up the victory points, the Draconis force had scored 60 points for kills but lost 20 of that due to surviving the battle, putting them on 40 VP for the game. The kill I scored lowered that to 10 VP; a minor victory for the Draconis Combine. If the Stormcrow had failed any one of three ammunition explosion rolls, due to the intense heat build-up it had intentionally been subjected to, it would have been a different result. The campaign standings are now +50 VP, which pushes Wade into the zone of a decisive victory. I will need to pull of something spectacular in the Alpha Strike finale to claw back some glory.
See you across the table,