Matakishi's Tea House

A simple little site...

Alien Insects? nooo, just marsh gas. Trust me.

This is a report of our latest game in my 'Alien Invasion' set. Previously we had tried out the rules for U.N.I.T. against Daleks, now it was the turn of the Men in Black against the Spugs. We played two games, the second was a better game for the players but wasn't as photogenic so the first encounter is the one that gets the full treatment. There's a summary of the second game at the end so you can compare the two. Both the MiB and Spug players were much better prepared for the second encounter and everything was far more direct and brutal.

here's the set up. The Spugs are mining rare Earth minerals using a tin mine that they've taken over.

The Spugs have two Attack Squads and a Recon Squad guarding the mine.

The MiB arrive at the edge of a nearby village to investigate. The MiB deploy five pairs of Operatives and will receive a Clean up Squad during the game (maybe).

The MiB send two pairs of Operatives on a cautious advance, there are Spug holes all over the map showing that the vile insects have been busy here. The Operatives seal the holes they find with explosives. Suddenly there is a rumbling and a shaking beneath their feet and the hideous head of a Burrower worm breaks through the surface between the two groups. A swarm of accompanying Spugs erupt around it, spilling out of the new tunnel in a particularly unsettling way.

The Spug technician sends his Hellmites towards one group of humans whilst the main body of the Attack Squad open a devastating fire on the other. The Hellmites explode as they get to grips with the first pair of MiB, killing themselves and the humans instantly. The second pair of Operatives don't stand a chance and are swept away in a blaze of gunfire. The strange insects disappear into the ground as suddenly as they appeared, following the huge Burrower worm that precedes them.
All is not lost for the humans however, the remains of the dead Hellmites can be recovered and used to increase the MiB's knowledge which in turn increases the efficiency and deadliness of their weapons.

Just as the MiB successfully upgrade their weapons the promised Clean up Squad arrives and begins to deploy forward towards the last Spug position.

Once again the cautious advance of  the MiB is interupted by a Spug Attack Squad appearing next to them. But, before the Insects can open fire, the supporting Clean up Squad devastates them with some  withering fire. All the Spugs explode and crack apart as the alien weapons of the MiB tear into them. None survive. The pair of unlucky Operatives are killed in the exchange also.

Only the Hellmites emerge from the carnage and launch themselves at the humans. Unable to explode without their controller they attack with tooth and claw. They don't last long. The remains of the Spugs and the Burrower worm are taken for analysis. Once again the information adds to the effectiveness of the MiB weapons.

While the MiB are investigating the remains of their fallen hive-mates the Spug Recon Squad makes a quick advance towards the village and begins to trade shots with the Clean up Squad in a building. The humans begin to take casualties despite the protection of their cover.

Seeing the Spugs occupied, a pair of Operatives speed down the road towards the mine. If they can shut it down the Spugs will be thwarted in their plans to exploit our precious natural resources.

As the car screeches into the mining compound the ground near it bubbles and churns as a Burrower worm struggles to the surface.

It's compliment of Spug soldiers swarm around it and begin to fire on the MiB car.

The MiB in the vehicle return the fire with their recently enhanced weapons and slaughter most of the insects in seconds. Fearing that the end is imminent, the Recon Squad heads back at full speed to help their comrades.

Unable to do much damage to the car or its occupants the Recon Spugs turn their attention to the nearby fuel tank which explodes almost instantly, wrecking the vehicle and killing the humans inside it.

The tide has turned. The MiB left in the village are caught unawares by the returning Recon Squad who mow them down without a thought.
The mysterious Spug work deep underground continues unabated......

A word of explanation....

The Spugs are fast, very fast and can travel unopposed underground. They're relatively tough because of their natural armour and operate in large groups that can deliver some fairly devastating firepower. Their hive mind allows them to combine fire in multiple moves.
The MiB are weak to begin with, their weapons are unreliable, using a random number of dice to shoot each time they're used. They can't combine fire either. However, once they kill an alien species they can begin to make research rolls with the remains which, if successful, increase the firepower of their weapons. Fighting against the Spugs who have three different types of aliens in their force, Spugs, Mites and Burrowers, the MiB have the potential although it will be rare, to each dish out 20D6 of damage when they fire. It only takes 9 points to kill a Spug so they become truely formidable enemies if they survive long enough.

In the second game the MiB sent a car straight for the mine. It was attacked at the entrance by a Spug Attack Squad. The Spugs killed the operatives but took casualties from the supporting MiB who were in the village buildings overlooking the action. The MiB upgraded their weapons and launched a second vehicle down the edge of the table. This was attacked from below again and again the supporting fire from the buildings inflicted casualties on the Spugs. Massive casualties in fact which left the mine undefended and allowed two Operatives to close it down.

The Players

Once again I'd like to thank my play testers for their valuable input. They are, from left to right, Mark, Giro, Kevin and Colin. Thanks chaps!