Friday, 2 December 2022

Two Games of Xenos Rampant

I wasn't going to buy Xenos Rampant. I like Dan Mersey's rules  - I own most of them (with the exception of the Pikes one) and always enjoy playing them. But I don't really play Sci-Fi games, so this wasn't on my list. And then it came out, and it looked nice and I tried to order it with a free frame from Northstar but my card had some sort of fit so I couldn't, so that was that but the seed was planted and I found it on the Hive for a good price. The Hive, unlike Amazon, supports local bookshops and pays taxes, so you should probably buy books from them if you're shopping online.

Anyway I bought the rules thinking it might give me a chance to get the 40K toys out. I have zero interest in learning a new version of 40K and certainly no will to keep up with the endless rules buying and updates but I do kind of like the models, and I do have quite a few painted.

Martin and Matt were both up for giving the game a go, so I threw down a table and statted up a couple of forces.

Apologies for the picture quality - these are all phone snaps.

The board was a 4x4 (as recommended by the rules) jungle board. We decided most of the jungle pieces were impassable (you can't move the plants and there's no room for model bases) but some bits (where the terrain is moveable) were rough ground and soft cover. None of the jubgle blocked line of sight, but it did up the armour for troops on the other side of it.

The Orks had three units of Sluggas (Berserk Infantry) one of Shootas (Light Infantry plus a heavy weapon) and some Nobs (reduced model count Heavy Infantry, Close Combat)

You don't get many Marines in 24 points. There were two units of Elites, one with Armour Piercing and one Close Combat. The CC unit had an "Inspiring Leader" - the Emperor's Champion. The Scouts were Veteran recon infantry. We all agreed this didn't quite feel right for Marine Scouts, but I didn't have time/inclination to work out a better match.

We thought the spiker plants should probably have some sort of exploding/poisonous rule, but we had enough on with mastering the basics,

The Orks razzed forwards.

While the Marines held a line.

The Scouts were a bit sneaky.

Some good shooting by the Shootas thinned the combat squad a bit (6s count a 2 hits if you have a heavy weapon) and then the Sluggas went in. But were no match for Marines.

The EC, his dander properly up went toe to toe with the Nobz and did for them as well.

With the tactical squad easily forcing the Ork boys to wild charge them in a defended position, pretty soon the Waaagh was a wimper and the field belonged to the Astartes.

All over in fairly short order we had another go. I replaced two of the Slugga Squads with a Combat oriented dreadnought - mostly for giggles and partly to see how walkers worked.

Klankenstein and the Shootas bought the pain to the Emperor's Champion.

And they then stumbled toward the tactical squad.

There followed a fair bit of to-and-fro with neither side much able to hurt the other.

With the rest of the Marines fled, but unable to turf the survivors from their defended jungle we called a halt to the game.

This was good fun - Xenos (like all the Rampant games) plays fast and furious. The Free Moves in this one add some tactical grist to the mill and this was very much a learning experience so there's clearly tactics and whatnot to work out.
Great to get the old 40K toys on the table and Matt and Martin both seemed to enjoy it.
I think we'll be playing again.


  1. Nice looking games. Would this work for Star Wars Legion?

    1. Absolutely it would. There's even a suggested list or two at the back of the book for Rebel types and Imperial types

  2. Have just got my copy, very nice-looking book and I hope to get around to reading it this weekend as it looks promising.

  3. Looking forward to picking up a copy of the rules