Boarding parties

Who uses boarding parties? For those that do, are you conducting H&R raids or are you trying to take the ship or a little of both? How do you like boarding actions in your game?

Also, if you assign guards, what do you normally guard and how many BP do you normally assign to this duty as opposed to sending over?


I occasionally use H&R raids. Usually I'm aiming at power systems (particularly warp). The theory there is that this:
A) Slows down the other guy, giving me the initiative
B) Starves his weapons, preventing damage to me or allowing my seekers to hit
There are corner cases. If in an anchor, I might go for that tractor. If looking to capture, I might H&R some control spaces before making the dive with troops. If he's only got a couple of weapon systems left, I might hit one of those.

Usually I will guard systems in a tournament situation, but not so much in patrol battles. I usually put a guard around each warp engine (to keep him from doing what I would do) and on the last tractor I will hit (to keep him from cheesing his way out of an anchor.)

Space Marines!

As noted, I mostly play tournament games these days. In tournament play, I see BP hit and run raids used by either me or my opponent not that often, but once and a while--I'll guess maybe, like, 25%-33% of games see someone try some hit and run raids? They tend to be purely opportunistic; I don't know that anyone regularly goes into a game planning on H+R raids being a big part of their game plan. Usually, late in a game, when things are gnarly, they are a shot in the dark. Once and a while, someone will try a desperation "H+R the tractor that is holding me!" move right before getting killed.

I always assign guards in tournament games, using up all the BPs that can't get on transporters in one turn (so, like, 9/12 on the Gorn or 7-8/12 on the Kzinti).

In non tournament play, I have certainly used BPs in games in the past, but usually in scenarios that leveraged BPs (land guys on a planet; try and capture a freighter; etc.). When we were playing a lot of playtest Y era games in the early-mid 90's, we used BPs and the advanced BP combat rules (with the ship diagrams and taking over specific sections, etc.), 'cause in Y era battles, you spend a lot of time with down shields and not many weapons to fire through them, with slow ships that are listing and taking on vacuum, so sending over BPs was always something that could happen.

What to target...

One of the CL tactics articles suggested targeting hull boxes for H&R raids. The justification was that more important systems and weapons are likely to be guarded which reduces the chance of success dramatically. However, who guards the hull? Taking out more hull boxes will then allow an alpha strike or Mizia sniping to get into more valuable columns on the DAC quicker. Especially helpful if the ship has already been previously damaged and the hull boxes have already been reduced and you want to knock out the last one or two and then Mizia. Could net a more valuable system/weapon.

Same for things like labs and probes depending on the ship and what those boxes are protecting. It would pay to take a moment and look at the DAC prior to launching a H&R raid to see if maybe there is some non-essential protecting something critical.

Thought it was an interesting tip.

My other car is a D7 Battlecruiser