Home Forums Sci Fi General Sci-Fi Rogue Stars

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  • #53871
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    Just received my Rogue Stars Nickstarter order! I suppose people in the UK will have received their parcels last week already, but I’m still excited to have mine.

    The rulebook is on par with the Frostgrave books in terms of production values: a fair deal of artwork (character concepts in this case) and an adequate number of photos of painted miniatures with good-looking terrain/scenery. All presented in the usual, “clean” Osprey Wargames style of layout and design. Haven’t begun to familiarise myself with the rules themselves (authored by the well-respected Andrea Sfiligoi of Songs of Blades and Heroes fame) yet, but they look fun, geared toward scenario-based gameplay with custom-built characters but also points costs to enable pick-up games.

    The figures (22 of them counting the limited edition figure that only comes with the Nickstarter and the 5 extra figures released separately) are as expected, the usual North Star sculpting style and quality, which for me is a very good thing. I really do like the North Star sculptors’ stable a lot. Apparently Mike Owen and Mark Copplestone made these particular figures. My favourite figure is the elderly female space pirate (called a “guildmistress” in the book), she reminds me of the sky pirate matriarch from Castle in the Sky.

    Anyone else feeling excited about the release of this game? It’s perfect for rogue-oriented sci-fi/sci-fantasy skirmish/adventure gaming in the vein of Star Wars, Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain Harlock, etc.

    #53898
    Dan Rayner
    Participant

    Yes, I picked this up too, as I’m interested to see how it compares to Starport Scum and Void Pirates. I haven’t had a chance to do more than flip through the book so far, so I’m not sure how it’s going to play.  It’s a very nicely produced book but it looks like there are a lot of modifiers involved in combat and long lists of traits to remember for characters.

    Have you played it yet?

    #53900
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    I’m sure I won’t have a chance to play it for a long time, truth is I’ve been completely in painting, modelling and rules-reading mode for several years by now (and anyway, I only received the book and figures today). Silly though it may sound, part of my motivation for wanting rulebooks with high production values is absorbing inspiration for my own painting and modelling efforts. Seeing the photos and artwork in the Rogue Stars rulebook makes me itch to paint more sci-fi figures and make more sci-fi terrain.

    I’ll definitely want to compare Rogue Stars to Starport Scum and/or Clash on the Fringe (presently I only have CotF, I’m not really clear on how Starport Scum is different or which of the two is closer in concept to Rogue Stars). Thanks for pointing out Void Pirates, I wasn’t aware of it but now I’m interested in that, too.

    It strikes me that Rogue Stars is being released with perfect timing. A similarly-themed Star Wars film has just hit cinemas (rogues, rebels… close enough), and hype is building up for the second Guardians of the Galaxy film and the Valerian & Laureline film coming next year. To say nothing of the expectations that have already begun building up for the 2018 Han Solo prequel Star Wars film. Now is the time to be collecting and gaming with roguish spacefaring adventurers.

    #53911
    Thuseld
    Participant

    I have been following it but did not take the plunge. I didn’t really want more figures to lie around remaining unpainted. Do you think it would work with 6mm?

    As for Starport Scum and CotF, I have to say that I find Starport Scum easier to just quickly set up a game and get miniatures on the table. I haven’t played CotF yet precisely because it looks like I am going to have to put some time in creating characters and adding points up, whereas with Scum I can just throw in a bunch of cannon fodder and make up a character with whatever rules I feel like they should have.

    #53951
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    I’ve been looking at the rules more closely, and it’s turned out to be a considerably more granular, nitty-gritty, RPG-lite kind of ruleset than I had expected, much like Dan said. For instance: all figures have wound locations (torso, legs, arms, head) with different wound effects; there are a lot of combat modifers (nearly 50 in all, counting both ranged combat and melee modifiers); a lot of weapons and armour types with various special rules; figures can perform multiple actions per turn and there are a lot of actions available to perform, many of them quite granular (to give you one of the more extreme examples, priming a grenade is one action, throwing it is another); there are several character states (wounded, stressed, pinned, knocked prone, weapon dropped, etc) that require keeping track of; and a LOT of character traits such as skills, weapon upgrades and cybernetic enhancements.

    There are some other interesting aspects to the rules. There’s what appears to be a very dynamic action/reaction system that involves “gambling” with your initiative to perform as many actions as possible without losing that initiative to the other player. As yet I have no idea how well this plays – no way to know until I’ve had a few games in (which probably won’t be soon). The mission generation system looks fun, but it’s the sort of thing that’s been done often before: You roll on one table for mission type, another table for location, and a third table for complicating circumstances. Or you just select without rolling, because obviously most players won’t have the available terrain for all location types. The faction and character building rules look fun as well, or at least, the process of building factions and characters looks fun in and of itself (if potentially time-consuming), although what with all the character traits and tactical disciplines (the latter being traits that apply to the entire faction) gameplay itself may become rather complex.

    It seems that in a typical game, every figure is a unique character. Similarly, every faction has a theme of its own, such as Bounty Hunters, Star Cops, Merchants, Psionics (the Force is strong with these ones… ) and so on. The rules say a faction must be 4-6 characters, so unless house rules are used, it’s not the sort of game where there’s much in the way of “cannon fodder” or “mooks”. I might want to modify that last bit, myself. At least there’s some sort of provisions in there for making some characters be “worth more” than others, so they don’t all have to be equally capable.

    Overall, I’d say that Rogue Stars is even more granular than the old Rattrap Productions rulesets (.45 Adventure, Gloire, Fantastic Worlds and Broadsword Adventures) that I used to play a lot, and those were plenty granular. Definitely not a ruleset for everyone. For my part, I’m going to hang in there and give it a try – as I said, it’s not my first time playing complex RPG-lite games like this. I probably won’t go all in for it, though. There are times when I’ll want to use the same figures for a simpler, quicker game, and for that I’ll turn to other rulesets written with the same general theme in mind, like Clash on the Fringe, Starport Scum, 5150 or possibly Void Pirates depending on what that turns out to be like.

    #53952
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    Do you think it would work with 6mm?

    I don’t see why not, with the possible caveat that the game does use counters for Stressed, Pinned, Wounded and possibly a few other, more uncommon conditions. You’d need small enough counters, or to devise an alternative way of keeping track of these conditions off-table.

    In 28mm, Rogue Stars in meant to be played on a 3′ x 3′ table. So in 6mm, you could have as little as 20 x 20 cm, measuring distances in half-centimeters instead of inches.

    #53955
    Noel
    Participant

    Is this game focused entirely on combat?

    #53975
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    Is this game focused entirely on combat?

    Hmm… I suppose not, in the sense that the majority of missions have objectives that aren’t directly about combat (eg search for loot, carry contraband across the table, rescue a prisoner, reach safety, sabotage stuff, repair stuff, operate a computer terminal, etc) but then of course it could easily be argued that these are just devices to make combat flow in different ways than they would in a straight-up deathmatch, as opposed to actually precluding combat. Then again on the other hand, by that token there wouldn’t be many miniatures games in existence that aren’t focused entirely on combat.

    Some of the locations and scenario complications can also hamper combat to a limited extent (eg the encounter is aboard a spaceship so all ranged attacks that miss cause collateral damage with dangerous side effects, or two characters on opposing sides have a secret connection so they don’t want to kill each other, or EMP is causing equipment malfunctions, etc).

    There is a campaign system, so that can give you something to do in between missions. But there isn’t much to it besides checking for deaths and injuries and spending Experience Points gained in previous games to upgrade characters.

    #53981
    Noel
    Participant

    Thanks, that’s helpful.

    As long as there are objectives to achieve, then it may be something I want to check out.

    #54798
    The Gray Ghost
    Participant

    I’m only interested in the miniatures and have heard the figures are a bit hit and miss, what do you think

    Beware The Gray Ghost

    #54823
    Rhoderic
    Participant

    I’m only interested in the miniatures and have heard the figures are a bit hit and miss, what do you think

    In regard to sculpting and casting quality they’re all fine as far as I’ve noticed, the usual North Star standard. As for aesthetic, a couple of them might be a tad uninspired or lacking in sublimeness, but that’s the sort of thing one can judge for oneself from photos before buying. The weakest of the lot is probably “Big Bot”, the miniature version of the robot on the rulebook cover. Mechanical designs might not be Mike Owen’s strong suite. I’ve never to my knowledge seen anything mechanical sculpted by Owen before.

    One should keep in mind that most of the figures are based on artwork from the book (interestingly enough by a Swedish artist I was aware of since before). It’s quite cartoonish so Owen and Copplestone have had to relate to that. They’ve toned down the cartoonishness a bit, but not all the way, so you get some very ham-fisted brutes, slender-torsoed women, and so on.

    #55138
    ian pillay
    Participant

    I have ordered this title still waiting for Amazon to post it to me. Looks interesting and Osprey books are really nice and don’t break the bank.

    As for playing in 6mm. Everything can be played in 6mm. Just as Angel Barracks 🙂

    Tally-Ho!

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