Infinitively Infinite

2022 Top 10 Solo Skirmish Games #10!

#10 STARGRAVE


The first game on the countdown is Stargrave. I’ve played it twice. Once to learn the rules and another time to actually go after the bounty.


If you know Frostgrave, you’ll know Stargrave. It’s basically Frostgrave with a sci-fi skin and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. One thing that prevented me from playing Frostgrave was the solo rules seemed to be a subset of the full game, like it was a different game, whereas Stargrave (with maybe the game designer having more experience due to the pandemic lockdowns and isolation) has more robust solo rules and even solo campaigns and that works better for me.


The game has different activation levels and allows for some uncertainty as to who will go first, which is nice. It uses d20s with all the swinginess that implies. It has the requisite magic spells psychic powers for you to toss around. 


In game play, I found the enemy AI seemed a little wonky and sent the minions into doing some odd things, so the AI rules are more like what d’you call ‘em… suggestions.


The complications worked well to spice up the missions. Without it, I could’ve finished one mission by turn 2. However because I had to bring back physical proof of the bounty (Colin Preek’s head) it took longer as I had to go in, cut off the head and get off the table. Very enjoyable.


With all that said, I’m not sure about the longevity of Stargrave as a solo tabletop skirmish game. It definitely works as a PvP game, but for solo, the main (free) rules has your captain and crew going after wanted criminals. I’m sure dedicated players can tweak the rules to break out of this box.


The other part is, to get access to more solo scenarios/missions, you need to get the expansions. Whether that’s worth it is really up to the individual, hence why Stargrave is #10 on the list.


HONOURABLE MENTIONS


Battlespace. 


I know, I know. This marks the THIRD year in a row this game is an Honourable Mention. Not good. One of my gaming resolutions for 2023 is: Get this to the table by February!


Battlespace is a solo-only modern warfare game, and it was recently pointed out to me some of the mechanics bears striking similarities to Sellswords & Spellbringers where you draw cards when you fail an activation roll, enemies are spawned randomly and you roll to beat the enemy’s Danger Level.


It uses d20s and you don’t roll dice for the OpFor. It’s assumed their attack is a success, you roll to see if you avoid the attack, needing to beat the enemy’s Danger Level.


Hope to report on this game in my blog next year. (I plan to buy some STLs and get them printed so I have no excuse to not play any more.)

Comments