My gaming group has been playing GURPS Fantasy for a while, and then had a hiatus around Christmas (this was a bad year to schedule a game on Wednesday nights!) The regular GM is on a much deserved vacation, so it we went back to a session of Mecha Against the Giants.
Technical Difficulties SolvedFor once, everyone was pretty much on time and didn't have any technical difficulties. There was a bit of weirdness since one player was waiting for a pizza and wouldn't hear the door if he had his new noise cancelling headphones on, but we solved that by using text chat for twenty minutes or so. After his pizza arrived, we moved on to voice chat.
Vanquishing GiantsWe finished up the second half of Isentor Bridge. It was pretty straightforward: the players had mostly figured out that small and normal giants weren't a threat, and focused on the big giants.
The small giants have a problem that they're slower and weaker than the mechs, and that the mechs can trivially kill them by slamming into them. The small giants want to surround a mech and smash it from behind, but it's trivial for a mech to move around or through any attempt to be surrounded, or shoot multiple giants at point blank range if absolutely necessary. The giants can't even safely slam the mechs, because the damage disparity is too great: the giants are knocked unconscious and the mechs rarely take damage. Which is fine, because this means the players feel awesome as they smash their puny foes.
The big giants are more of a threat, but so far they've been outnumbered by the mechs and easily killed. Soon, the set pieces are going to feature many strong and massive giants, and things will be much more difficult for the mech pilots.
Actual tactics for this fight were pretty straightforward: two pilots finished off the last of the wounded giants in the south, while the other two pilots charged up the center and ran over anything that got in their way.
There were a couple of notable moments, as usual:
- One of the large giants managed to grab one of the mechs, which caused a quick discussion about how Technical Grappling works when dealing with ST75 SM+2 combatants. I'd planned to have Douglas Cole on hand to answer those questions, but that didn't work out. We muddled through.
- A large giant made an all-out great axe attack on a mech, missing narrowly. The pilot responded by head-butting the giant with a telegraphed all-out attack. Fortunately, the giant had already been badly wounded by an anti-tank rocket, and the headbut was enough to knock him out.
- The gunslinger wanted to shoot a medium sized giant that was standing behind two small giants. There was a bit of bitching and moaning about cover penalties before I pointed out that, per Campaigns p 408, he could just shoot through the giants at a minor penalty. The pilot had plenty of APDS ammo, and gave it a try. End result: two excessively dead small giants, and one dead medium giant with an APDS shell dippling his back armor. I predict that there will be more shooting of clustered giants, just because it's hilarious.
- The relatively unskilled but lucky lieutenant drove through a couple of giants, bouncing over their bodies at high speeds and almost going off the road and into the grass. All this meant multiple control rolls at some penalties, and the player rolled an 11 or less on three dice about 4 times in a row. The odds of that happening aren't especially high, but what the heck, the lieutenant really is lucky.