Chrome Hammer Cyberpunk Skirmish Game

I've had the rules for Chrome Hammer (from Nordic Weasel Games) for quite a while now, and the reviews of the newly published Chrome Hammer Ascension (a take on Shadowrun, cyber magic and all) pushed me to finally get this to the table.

I tried vanilla Chrome Hammer as the latest version has some solo rules (but not the same as the solo-only Chrome Hammer Ascension) as I thought it'd be slightly easier and I also don't have the required 6th World minis... Troll hackers? Dwarf Faces? Elf cyber mages? Sigh. I have to search for them and get them 3D printed.

So I set up the table and looked at the Virus Upload mission where your gang of punks need to upload a virus into the corporation's servers so they can hack into the bank accounts to siphon off some sweet bitcoin. You have an objective server, two data terminals you can hack into for rewards, and 2 loot crates for sweet, sweet loot.

I rolled a random corporation (Citi-Cash!) which was finance related, giving me 13 points to buy corporation units with and I bought 6 units. And here's where I ran into the first snag. Turns out I'm only supposed to have 5 units. And the first 4 guards I spawn after my punks move is free. I couldn't find any of this info explicitly mentioned in the rulebook. (I think. I'll have to read it. Again.)

The next one was reinforcement spawn points. Again, nowhere is it explicitly mentioned they spawn in the same areas where the initial first 4 spawn, as those are "free" guards. I mean, one can INFER, of course, but...

(Big thanks to the game's designer who promptly answered all my [dumb] questions on the game's Discord channel).

Then I played the game. Or tried to. I quickly learned it's a game of stealth stealth stealth all the way. Your punks start in stealth mode... and can quickly lose it in a variety of ways. And each point of stealth you lose gives the corporation the points it needs to bring in those reinforcements.

And it's also a bad idea to shoot at the corporation units. Sometimes you may have no choice. But it's better to avoid it as units have reasonably high health (7HP) and you can only do an average of 3-4 damage per attack. Of which you can only make one when it's your punks' turn. Hmmm.

In my first game, the guard spawned... right on top of my punks! On the first turn! Bad idea. I was too gung-ho. 


In my 2nd game, I tried running for the computer terminal objective and try NOT to shoot at the guards... and the guards and reinforcements still homed in on me. On a 3x3 table... they move really fast!

To be fair, part of the issue was I was using a map with had a huge road running right through the center as I was planning on using the same setup for my Judge Dredd game later on. (Yeah, I actually played Judge Dredd AFTER I played this, although the Dredd batrep got uploaded first).

Bad idea. Chrome Hammer seems to need Infinity levels of blocking terrain and vertical heights. Wide open spaces are a no-no.

I knew after even 2 turns (over 2 games) that I was on a losing proposition. I needed to rethink my punks' Edges (skills) and re-do the table layout.

I'll play Chrome Hammer again in a week or two. As soon as I get my 3-mission Judge Dredd mini campaign out of the way. I've already played the first mission here.

I'm now painting the minis I need to use for Judge Dredd and I'll be all set to play in... say... 2-3 days' time? (Said the prime miniatures-painting-procrastinator with full confidence). Either that or I'll just play with primed-white minis.

Then it's back to the neon-bright world of Chrome Hammer's cyberpunks!