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Honor Badges / Ranks (Mark of Chaos/Event) questions...

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Honor Badges / Ranks (Mark of Chaos/Event) questions...

Postby Kurgan » Wednesday January 26th, 2022 1:36am

So, I'm still waiting on my order of Space Crusade and in the meantime trying to learn the rules from the scans I've found online (similar to how I did with Battle Masters... by the time the box finally arrived I felt confident in it; though that game felt a lot simpler than Space Crusade!).

I get it that in the Missions (which form a campaign), the space marine players score points (per squad) based on monsters they kill, and achieving primary and secondary objectives. They lose points when their members get killed (and the Alien player gets points for those kills). They can retreat out the docking claw they came in (similar to the heroes in HeroQuest retreating down the spiral staircase), but at the cost of the mission. Still, as long as the Commander himself doesn't die, they get to keep their points earned (if he dies it resets). Though I see if they do really lousy, it says the Commander sacrifices himself in battle and it resets anyway, so you still have to get a certain threshold in order to advance.

Am I understanding so far? Okay, so by getting a high enough score, each player can earn 1-3 "honor badges" per mission. Winning the mission automatically ranks them up. Each new rank (up to rank #4) gives them one extra Order card (start at 1).

But they can also store up their "honor badges" to get more Equipment cards. So four honor badges would equal 8 equipment cards. But they can also use four honor badges to cash in and go up a rank. When you do this, do you lose the "equipment" you had... meaning at the next rank you'd be back to being able to use 4 cards (instead of 8)?

I presume something similar is happening for the Alien player, who has the Marks of Chaos system with his ranks.

I haven't even really studied the Eldar system, but I see it has two different versions, one with the "10 eldar" squad and the "5 eldar squad." I see that in that expansion the Eldar (5 member squad) works together with the three Space Marine squads against the Alien player (who gets to draw two Event piles in that one).

I suppose it is all working towards a new level of complexity, but this is different than I thought... at first I thought the Alien was drawing event cards all the time, much like the Evil Wizard deck, but it's really based on rank. And the reinforcements are his equivalent of equipment.

The other question I have is... okay I can imagine that there are many chances for the space marines to fail, or at least for their commander to get killed, meaning the Alien player might score enough points and "win the campaign." But is it also true that the space marines could effectively rank up to the point where they would "win the campaign" with still more missions left to go? (that is there are 12 missions, but if I am calculating it correctly, they could "win" by mission 7, assuming there are enough points to win). I guess the monkey wrench would be that if there are multiple space marine players, they are splitting up the possible points. There may not be enough monsters to kill to let everyone rank up, unless they are purposely letting one group get all the points, though how they would do this I'm not sure. Most encounters seem to be resolved within one or two dice rolls... not quite as quickly as the battles in Battle Masters, but pretty quick compared to HeroQuest from what I've seen.

I haven't even gotten into Mission Dreadnought, but since this one isn't part of the set I'm getting, I have been less inclined to focus on learning it.

Still, curious to hear if I'm understanding the way most people played this game, and what are the strengths and weaknesses of this system vs. homebrew ways to play.

The more I study this game (and Warhammer 40k) the more I see its influence on video gamer franchises like Doom, Unreal Tournament and Halo (even if in turn it was inspired by the likes of Dune, Terminator and Aliens, plus comics and novels) and how Warhammer Fantasy and 40K can be compared to the later video games Warcraft and Starcraft. Good stories tend to inspire the best games, and the same themes can inspire games of different types.


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Re: Honor Badges / Ranks (Mark of Chaos/Event) questions...

Postby Gold Bearer » Wednesday January 26th, 2022 11:19am

Yea. Your starting rank gives you one order card and no honour badges gives you four equipment cards. For each honour badge (you can have up to four) you get one extra equipment card and there's eight cards so four honour badges gives you all of them.

For each rank after the first you get one extra order card. You get one, two or three honour badges depending on how many points you ended up with after a mission, for a bad porformance you get stripped of any honour badges you have. You get promoted by winning a mission (scoring the most points and reaching the required minimum score to win that mission) and/or by trading in four honour badges.

If you've just traded honour badges for a promotion then you don't have any so go back to four equipment cards. It doesn't matter if you max out, the winner is the one with the highest rank or most honour badges if they're the same rank at the end of the campaign. There's four ranks after the first one but only four order cards so the last rank doesn't do anything and you can't trade honour badges to reach it.

You can max out after the fourth mission. If you win the first one you go up one rank and have three honour badges and then winning the second one takes you to the third rank with four honour badges which you can trade in to reach the fourth rank. After the third mission you can be the highest rank.

The alien player has reinforcements in every mission (the amount depends on the mission and how many players there are) and draws one event card each turn. Being promoed allows you to hold on to an event card without playing it, getting another promotion allows you to hold on to up to two event cards at a time, etc. The marks of chas allow you to add to the reinforcement pool at the start of the mission.
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Re: Honor Badges / Ranks (Mark of Chaos/Event) questions...

Postby Kurgan » Tuesday February 22nd, 2022 7:01pm

Interesting, so it seems there would be two long term goals... "play all the missions" or "just get the highest rank first." I suppose old players could drop out and new players join in, mid series to try to get there. I suppose if you're having fun, why wouldn't you want to keep playing the last 8 missions (plus 4 more from dreadnought expansion, I could see starting over with the Eldar expansion to rank that group up).


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