Horizon Wars: Zero Dark - The Heist

Back to Horizon Wars: Zero Dark again. Mission 2: The Heist. (Mission 1 is here).

Mission: The information gleaned from the captured data node is partial, thanks to a purge trap initiated by the host AI. However, your EWOps are able to determine that VOM is particularly interested in the offices of a particular bank: not an ebank, either, but one of the old-school types with a secure vault and underground safety deposit rooms.

Mission Command informs you that VOM already has forces on site at this ebank, but not in high numbers. However, they have detected a major movement of forces which they think is heading to reinforce. Once they get there, it will be impossible to beat VOM to the punch. Your team must get past the enemy perimeter, enter the bank, break into the vault and escape before the VOM forces arrive.


With that background briefing, the team moved in. They probably had the best of all worlds. No bogeys nearby. All bogeys scattered all over the place. So they took turns sneaking out of LOS of the only bogey in sight: an Elite in the far corner of the table edge.

Then Snake went to work taking out the bogeys in the path to the first objective: the security console. The only slight scare was when a bogey synthetic got close enough to take a shot at him. Needed a 15 and got a 18 on 2d12's dice. Dang. Thankfully he had a Support token to negate the shot. He passed his Stress test and fired back at the hapless bogey. Another one down!

After he cleared the way, Ghost (the EWOp) went in and easily hacked the security console to gain access to the vault. Lo and behold! It was right in the middle of the team’s position! Seriously, this could not have been a more perfect mission! Good intel.

The rest of the mission was anti-climatic to say the least. The surviving bogeys were too far away to be effective. Those that wandered too close were taken out by Snake. He even managed to use his explosive shot (grenade launcher?) to take out the Boss bogey and a nearby Grunt. That of course alerted the surviving bogeys* but it was moot. There were only two left and soon it was one. That one was all the way at the other end of the table.

Ghost sneaked back to the vault and opened it with ease, rolling 5 dice to get 15... twice. After that, everyone exited through the vault which was also the exfil point. The last one out was Deadeye, who stayed back to take out the last remaining bogeys to get the No Witnesses bonus. (Not an easy task because the Elite bogey had 2 Support tokens on him!) He then ran off before anything bad could happen.

Mission accomplished!

* Even though it’s not in the rules, I figured no matter how sneaky you are, a big boom like that will definitely alert everyone in the vicinity.

AAR: the mission started out all suspenseful... then fell a bit flat. It was TOO easy after hacking the security console. But then I’d taken so much time getting there in the first place I probably would have lost if the vault was anywhere else.

This game deserves my #1 ranking for my 2020 Solo Skirmish Game countdown. The fact you have so much freedom to do stuff is refreshing. Very Infinity-like without the complexity. With only 4 members in the team, each has a role to play. Deadeye (aka Shooty Killer) remains an MVP, reliably taking out most bogeys. The EWOp I was moaning about last game was now an MVP, hacking consoles and vaults with ease. The Sapper and sneaky melee guy had a quiet game. But who knows what the third and final mission will bring? 

[EDIT: MAJOR ERROR! Thanks to some folks on BGG, I discovered I'd been doing my bogey setup all wrong! The bogeys actually deploy in a restricted 1'x1' space centered around the Objective! Oy vey. 😖)