Even though I’ve owned the rules for BattleTech’s Chaos Campaign system for years, I’ve never actually played a campaign with them. I’ve decided to change that, so I’m going to be starting a Planetary Assault campaign using the rules and scenarios from Chaos Campaign: Succession Wars.
If you’re not familiar with them, the Chaos Campaign system is a set of abstract campaign rules for BattleTech. Rather than tracking C-Bills, maintenance and repair times, etc., you instead use abstract Warchest and Support Points to track your units resources, pay for repairs, and make purchases. The Chaos Campaign: Succession Wars pdf is a free version of the campaign system.
For my campaign, a company from the Capellan Confederation’s St. Ives Lancers is attacking Glentworth in the Federated Suns during the late 3rd Succession War. A company of the Capellan March Militia will be defending the planet. For this campaign, the St. Ives Lancers will be the “player force” while the Capellan March Militia will fill the “OpFor” role.
I am also going to be making a couple of small changes from the baseline rules. First, I’m going to roll for random skill levels for the MechWarriors just because I’d like more variety amongst them. The starting forces will roll as veterans while MechWarriors purchased during the campaign will be regular. Second, I’ll be playing with the optional ’Mech quirk rules to try to make different designs feel a bit more distinctive.
In addition to trying out the Chaos Campaign system, I’m going to take the opportunity to try out a lot of faction-specific variants rather than using the baseline designs. In addition to trying out new designs, this means that there will be very little overlap in specific variants between the two forces even though my current miniature collection means that there will be a lot of ’Mechs that show up on both sides of the battle.
St. Ives Lancers
Commanding Officer: Commander Qiao Long
Campaign Role: Attacker
Warchest: 1,000 WP
Qiao’s Command Lance
- Commander Qiao Long (3/3), Awesome AWS-8V
- Oksana (4/4), Warhammer WHM-6L
- Dimitri (4/3), Archer ARC-2R
- Bei (2/3), Thunderbolt TDR-5S
Commander Long’s lance is built to serve as a heavy force capable of engaging at all ranges. Her Awesome, Dimitri’s Archer, and Bei’s Thunderbolt all carry long-range missiles capable of indirect fire. For direct fire, the lance has three particle cannons and two large lasers distributed amongst them. Then Oksana’s Warhammer packs a considerable close-quarters punch with short-range missiles and medium lasers. This flexibility allows the Commander to move her lance wherever is necessary for a given battle.
Yulia’s Battle Lance
- Subcommander Yulia Aslanov (2/4), Marauder MAD-3L
- Giselle (3/4), Catapult CPLT-C4
- Yun (2/3), Wolverine WVR-6R
- Huan (4/5), Griffin GRF-1N
Like Commander Long’s lance, Subcommander Aslanov’s lance is a threat at all ranges but it is composed of somewhat lighter ’Mechs. The Subcommander’s Marauder can act as a long-range sniper, but is still a threat up close thanks to its large and medium lasers. Giselle’s Catapult and Huan’s Griffin perform best when they can keep their distance, while Yun’s Wolverine operates best close to the enemy.
Catherine’s Recon Lance
- Subcommander Catherine Fong (3/4), Phoenix Hawk PXH-1
- Ping (4/3), Wasp WSP-1L
- Li (4/3), Stinger STG-3G
- Alexander (3/5), Locust LCT-1V
Subcommander Fong’s lance acts as the eyes and ears for the company. They can use their high speed to scout out the area around the landing zone, and then find weak spots in the enemy’s defenses that the rest of the company can move to exploit. Alexander’s Locust lacks the jump capability of the rest of the lance, but makes up for it with a higher max speed on the ground.
Capellan March Militia
Commanding Officer: Captain Charlotte Henderson
Campaign Role: Defender
Warchest: 1,000 WP
Charlotte’s Battle Lance
- Captain Charlotte Henderson (4/3), BattleMaster BLR-1D
- Jessica (3/4), Warhammer WHM-6D
- Jude (2/3), Rifleman RFL-3N
- Deepak (2/4), Wolverine WVR-6D
Captain Henderson’s lance favors close quarters brawling. While her BattleMaster, Jessica’s Warhammer, and Deepak’s Wolverine can engage at longer ranges with particle cannons and autocannons, they are at their best when they can close in to add their medium lasers to their firepower. Jude’s Rifleman on the other hand is best suited to stay at range and provide direct fire support to his lancemates.
Clementine’s Fire Lance
- Leftenant Clementine Lee (2/4), Marauder MAD-3D
- Edward (2/5), Archer ARC-2R
- Jack (3/5), Valkyrie VLK-QA
- Chang (3/5), Valkyrie VLK-QF
Leftenant Lee’s lance is optimized for long-range fire support. Edward’s Archer and both Valkyries can use their long-range missiles to engage from outside of enemy range and from out-of-sight. As needed, the Valkyries can use their maneuverability to serve as spotters and then quickly move back out of sight before retaliation. Then the Leftenant’s Marauder serves as a bodyguard for the rest of her lance. Its particle cannons and large laser are usually enough to discourage enemies from pushing their luck.
René’s Cavalry Lance
- Leftenant René Gagneux (3/3), Phoenix Hawk PXH-1D
- Peter (4/4), Shadow Hawk SHD-2D
- Eliza (2/4), Wasp WSP-1D
- Trevor (2/4), Stinger STG-3R
Leftenant Gagneux’s lance is the company’s strike unit. Their lighter ’Mechs can use their maneuverability to hunt down lighter targets or make hit-and-run attacks to disrupt heavier enemy formations.