I have only played 100 point games and this is about 3 models if you play ISC to maybe 5 or 6 is playing Bamakas, Convoy or the Jokers. Each player a pool of Strategy Points (SP) that you can use to power abilities, bid to be the first player or play a tactical card. The number of SP becomes more important during the end game and its quite exciting bidding for that crucial turn when you want to go first and trying to keep enough SP for a tactical card or abilities. SP pool is determined from the sum of PSI of the units.
Activation of the units alternates but can be interrupted by a faster fighter (higher SPD). This is one of the best bits I think, as you can alter your opponents well thought out plans by interrupting then and becoming the active player. Of course this goes on to no more interrupts occur and the model then activates. So it pays to have a high SPD model just to do this. You can also pass and this helps the "out activated player" from always going last. BTW every model moves 10cm (not stated on card) and some have extra bonus such as the Carmin Hadakauma Gallop gives it +5cm joins for movement actions.
Every model gets 3 Action Points (AP) to use and I use a number dice (D6 with number not dots) behind each player. Easy to manage as you don't have a lot of models and it good to be able to see how may AP a model has left, especially if you are going to move into close combat.
- Movement costs (1 AP and can be done 3 times) so a model could move 30cm.
- Charge (2 AP and once per round) is a 10cm move into BTB
- Attack (1 AP and twice per round) either melee or range attack
Thats it! Very simple and works. Makes for a very quick game.
Attacks are what the game is all about and are a bit more complicated. The cool bit is the reaction options you have. You can , if you have AP left and I would normally try and keep at least 1unless I was certain that I wound not have to dodge or respond.
- Attempt to Dodge using your SPD to cancel successful hits. Another advantage to high SPD
- Attempt a response, essentially you get to have a hack first and then attacker get his turn if he is still alive. This is very cool as you both roll and add to your CBT
- You need to hit first using CBT and modifiers for terrain etc
- Then you do a STR roll to see if you wounded him
There are other rules for blasts etc but are very simple. So overall attacks are easy to manage and provide many options for the defender. Lots of fun.
One of the most important bits is the location roll. On the card below each limb has a dice symbol beside it. So if wounded the Grey Daimyo I would roll a D6 to see which limb. When I read this for the first time I thought - blah. Its s dumb idea. But after playing lots of games it works a treat and it is exciting to have a random roll for location. Key point is that you can modify the location roll using successful hits so if you had 3 hits and rolled a 2 (Arm) for location. You could use one hit to modify location to a 1 and cause 2 wounds or use two hits to modify location to a 3 or 4. Also remember that if you lose all wounds on a limb your dead!
Also some models have an adjusted skill rating depending on wounds. So if Ashton gets wounded 4 times in the Arm his CBT drops from 6 to 4 (value in red and dots turn red). The ISC models tend not to have red values so they always use the original skill rating until they die. There are some models that get better if they are wounded.
There are also conditions that can apply to a model such as Burn, Fear, Poison, Rage and Slowdown. I won't go into these but they provide extra tactical options for players.
There are other rules that add to the experience such as Territory rules, Infestation (NPC that roam the battlefield) and climatic conditions. Throw in the tactical and mission cards (some are specific to each faction) to provide plenty of variety (can be download from Taban) and you have the complete package.
I think that this is a great game that you will enjoy it. Its quick, provides many tactical choices and the models are just fantastic. Give it a go.