We played the Escalating Engagement scenario which requires 1/3 of the opposing forces, including all big ships to be in reserve to start with. My battleship, the ShadeMaker, and Xelocian Frigates started in reserve, whereas the Terran battleship Ajax and the Hawker carrier Joshua Schultz were Z's only two reserve elements.
Our deployment zones
The filthy Terran oppressors.
Early on, the Terran destroyers smack one of my cruisers. The opposing fleets generally begin a clockwise rotation.
I turned my Sulans toward the Terrans. Apparently they were content to play the long-ranged game so I thought it wise to rush them as quickly as a squadron of Tarakian cruisers can rush anything. You can see that the destroyers' nukes have caused some real grief for me early on.
A frigate succumbs to a massive torpedo volley as a cruiser takes a pounding from the gravity weapons of Bullock Squadron.
The Tarkian fleet seizes the initiative, closing again with the Terrans and accounting for one of the Hermes cruisers. Their torpedoes overwhelm another frigate. The asteroids will hopefully help the Sulans keep their noses clean.
That worked well! The Terrans target the nearest Sulan but don't make an impression. I think the frigates' torpedoes managed to knock the last hull point off my most damaged cruiser about this time too, because it isn't in any further photos.
The Terquai cruisers smash a Hermes from a long way off. Corrosive torpedoes cause a decompression!
Again, my Sulans close and cause havoc. A double-crit on an undamaged cruiser eliminate it. Their torpedo volley against the damaged cruiser is ineffective. You can also see that the Terran battleship has finally arrived! Uh Oh! The Tarakian cruisers may have over-played their hand.
The Terquai cruisers approach the destroyers, damaging one with their fore energy beams.
The end of turn four sees the last Terran cruiser succumb to the corrosive effects of the Terquai torpedoes.
The Terrans take the initiative but the Ajax has a poor performance, only killing one of Bullock Squadron's ships. My Tarakians fail their command roll and become disordered, but still manage to destroy the last two frigates! You can see the Joshua Schultz has just arrived as well.
I lose a Tarl as the squadron tries to shortcut its way through an asteroid field, desperately trying to get into the battle before it ends. They still manage to thump one of the destroyers.
Staring down two awfully big cannons, the Sulans wreak havoc before the lights go out. They smash the Schultz with their gravity weapons.
Another blasted asteroid takes out a Tarakian frigate. Are you kidding me? 50% of my casualties to this point are from poor driving. At least the rest of the squadron finishes off one of the destroyers. Finally.
Z's man of the match.
The carrier breaks it off in one of the cruisers. Cyberweapons knock out the PD so the bombers can pounce unopposed. Boom goes the dynamite.
Not to be outdone, the battleship targets the last of the cruisers, wrecking it. The Sulans are finally gone.
The game ended after turn 6. Here is the final positioning. My Alliance fleet had won, 4-2. You can see my poor, slow battleship inching its way forward. I was pushing it to get a grav slingshot off the planetoid...
That was a mighty fun battle, and much different from the last outing. My cruisers were impressive, handling a quarter of the tabletop by themselves. They were in big trouble once the big guys arrived, but by then it was too late to matter much. I was concerned that I'd gotten too aggressive early, and maybe I did, but I still had a large reserve component left to contend with the remains of the Terran fleet, so it worked out well.
We're having fun with FSA and are both looking forward to another game. Good Gaming!