Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Space Hulk – Game One - Beachhead

Having finished the Terminators last week, Finnegan and I sat down last Friday to finally PLAY a game of Space Hulk!


We played the Beachhead Scenario – the first one in the mission book. I played the Marines and Finnegan played the Genestealers. My victory conditions were to have at least 7 (of 10) surviving marines and no Genestealers in any of the rooms at the end of the game. The game lasted 12 turns. The Genestealers victory conditions was to kill more than 5 Terminators. If either of these conditions were not met, it was a draw…


The Marines had 10 Marine Terminators divided into two squads each with a Sergeant (one with a Power Sword and Stormbolter, the other with a Thunder Hammer and Storm Shield) and a heavy weapon (Assault Cannon or Heavy Flamer) the rest of the marines were armed with Stormbolters and Powerfists.

The Genestealers started with 10 blips? (2 in each room?) on the table and got an additional blips each turn from turn 4 to 10? I should have made note of this stuff before sitting down to hammer out this game report. Each blip represented 1-3 Genestealers.


Finnegan setting up and explainifying the rules to me.

All set up and ready to play – my Marines are loaded up into Boarding Torpedoes. One would arrive on the first turn, the other on the second, both in random locations.

There was the occasional rule-looking-up, but not much – it’s a pretty tight, simple, streamlined game.

Torpedo One arrives! The Terminators attempt to debus! They go pretty slow and it’s cramped quarters, so they don’t even all make it off the boarding torpedo on their first move.

Genestealers don’t wait! I’m not sure why they only moved this far…? The had six actions, they could have gotten in contact with the sergeant there… I think Finnegan was being clever and sat four spaces away so I’d have to use all his action points just to get to them and then have to spend command points to actually attack. He COULD have moved up, but then wouldn’t have had any actions to attack me and then Thunder Hammer Sergeant would have as many actions as he liked to hammer on the Genestealers… Also,  it was really cramped quarters and not easy to maneuver the Terminators around in there and I couldn’t shoot past any marines.

Second Turn – Second Boarding Torpedo arrives!

The game was pretty intense. The marine player has limited time to conduct his (or her) turn – this hourglass kept track of things. This is why I didn’t end up taking more detailed notes about how each turn went down – as I might have liked to for this first report. I guess I could have taken notes AFTER my turn was over… next time…

The Genestealers attack! BOOM! Two Terminators dead by the end of Turn Two! Things were NOT looking good!!

Finished off that first wave and cleared out the first room…

Sergeant waits by the door. Terminator with autocannon goes on overwatch to cover his back.

The Genestealers attack!

BZZZZZZZZZZZZT! Sustained fire from the autocannon wipes them out!

With the hall cleared of threats, the sergeant opened the door to face a line-up of Genestealers.

Unfortunately, the Sergeant died in this encounter leaving me with only seven marines… If I lost one more, I could not win the game. If I didn’t clear the rooms, though, I also would not win the game… Luckily at this point most of the initial blips had been cleared and Finnegan was just receiving one reinforcement per turn…

Elsewhere, Terminator with the Heavy Flamer lights up a passage roasting a couple more Genestealers.

Three of their number down, the marines press forward.

Rooms are cleared… but more blips are moving up!

Expecting trouble, the marines wait on overwatch. Though I did need to press forward to clear the rooms, Finnegan did also need to kill three more terminators for him to win.

Here they come!

The Assault Cannon took care of these…

More blips approaching from the flanks.

On the other flanks the Marines were pressing forward. If I got close enough to the Genestealer entry points, Finnegan would no longer be able to deploy from them. I got close enough to three (out of four) of them just in time for Finnegan to remind me that there were no more reinforcements coming out for the rest of the game. DOH!!!

In comes the attack – My marine was on overwatch – but his Stormbolter jammed!!!

He miraculously survived the onslaught, briefly, staggered back, cleared his jam and readied for the next attack.

Down he went. The Marine behind him finished off the Genestealer, but then HIS storm bolter jammed as the next Genestealer hurtled down the corridor!

That’s four down… I could not win this game! The best I could hope for was a draw, and for that I needed to prevent any further deaths….

Luckily there was only one or two turns left at this point and my heavy flamer still had a few bursts left in it, so I used it for area denial – filling the corridor with flame that prevented the Genestealers from moving through it.

Phew! What a nailbiter! Brought it to an less-than-satisfying draw…

Genestealers seem pretty bad-ass in this game. Regular terminator marines stormbolters seem pretty weak - and vulnerable. It was the assault cannon that really carried the day.

I had hoped to get in more games over the long weekend, but we ended up doing other things. We’d also hoped to get in a game today while The Girl was over at my folks doing stuff with Grandma today… but we ended up watching a movie and I got some painting done – the bases for the Space Marine doors – and some other stuff.

We are hoping to get in a game tomorrow afternoon! We may  play the same scenario, but switch things up and play the other side.

Coming Soon to Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Probably a game report of Space Hulk Game Two.

Later in the week some pics of some of the Kill Team terrain I’ve been working on, or reports of our first Kill Team games… No real NEED to finish up the new terrain – I have LOADS of totally useable terrain!


  1. Fun sounding game! Genestealers seem pretty tough,or Terminators aren't as tough as I thought they were?
    Best Iain

    1. They're definitely different in Space Hulk than they are in regular 40K. We kind of figured maybe they were taking into consideration the extremely cramped quarters that the action is taking place in...? I think they're trying to replicate the original Space Hulk. I didn't play a lot of the original Space Hulk, but I do remember Genestealers being bad ass and all fit the missions being really hard! If the Terminators were like they are in regular 40K it would be a bit of a cake walk - or you'd need a LOT more Genestealers.

    2. I remember ages ago trying out the original Space Hulk and finding it SUPER hard for the Termies. So one day a friend and I decided to replicate it in Rogue Trader (2nd Ed?) by cutting up some cardboard to make hallways and rooms and so on. We replicated the blip system and all! But if you think the assault cannon is powerful here, try it with following fire rules - oy.

    3. Mmmmmm... Following fire...

    4. yeah I'm pretty sure things would go differently played with the regular 40K rules.

      A pure strain Genestealer in 40K these days is M8", WS 3+, S4, T4, W1, A3, Sv5+ and their "rending claws" are S-User, AP-1, D1 - a Terminator on the other hand is M5, WS3+, BS3+, S4, T4, W2, A2, Sv2+, the Stormbolter is Rapidfire2, S4, AP0, D2, and the power fist is Sx2, AP-3, and Dd3! So for shooting, On an average round of shooting - at short range 4 shots, hitting 2/3 of the time, is going to be 2.6 hits per turn - S4 vs T4 means 1.3 wounds and a Sv or 5+ for the Genestealer means a terminator shooting at a genestealer at close range (<12") is going to cause .85 wounds on average - so 85% of the time they will kill a genestealer... In Space Hulk get to throw two dice each time they fire, but generally only hit on 6s (unless you have enough actions to fire multiple times, then they hit of 5s)... on overwatch it's the same but they ONLY hit on 6s, and the stormbolter will jam if you roll doubles (requiring an action to unjam!) They do, however, get to take a shot for ever action a Genestealer spends while in it's line-of-fire while it's on overwatch (as long as it doesn't jam). To many permutations for me to figure out, with my level of mathematical understanding, the likelihood of a Terminator killing a Genestealer per turn, given that they have limited action points that are used for both moving and shooting, but I feel it is generally less likely - often the terminators use up all their action points just trying to Maneuver and don't even get to take a shot on their turn.

      In close combat, however, is where things get really crazy. A Genestealer gets 3 attacks in 40K and will, on average, hit with 2 of them (with their WS3+), and wound with one (S4 vs T4 = wound on 4+)... but then the Terminator has that 2+ save.... The rending claws are AP-1 so the Terminator generally saves on a 3+ AND they have TWO wounds - so on an average turn a Genestealer will cause 1/3 of a wound... killing 1/6 of a Terminator... (they do have a special rule that if you roll a 6 on a wound roll, they get AP-4... so slightly more than 1/6, let's round that up to a kill 20% of the time?)... A Terminator on the other hand has 2 attacks, they are WS3+, but are -1 to hit with their powerfists, so, on average, they will hit with one of those attacks. The Strength is User x2 (so, 8!) which doubles the Genestealers Toughness so they wound on 2+ (83% of the time) and it has an AP of -3 completely negating the Genestealers Sv... it also does d3 wounds, which doesn't really even matter, because the Genestealers only have one... so a terminator, in 40K, will KILL a Genestealer 83% of the time...? Four times more likely than a Genestealer...

      In Space Hulk, in close combat a Genestealer gets 3 dice and an average Terminator gets ONE. Roll dice the highest roll wins and kills their opponent!? Someone with a better grasp on statistics could probably figure out the exact percent likelihood of either killing each other... but 3 die to one... The Genestealer is more likely to win!

      This isn't a complaint, mind you. If Terminators were as effective in Space Hulk as they are in 40K, Space Hulk would probably be a pretty boring game... It feels like more of a challenge the way it is.

  2. This is awesome! I’m inspired to get mine finished and game on!

  3. Great report. I don't know about "extra notes", the narrative was tight and objectives were clear. It read like a very tense nailbiter of a game.

    1. Cheers!

      We just played another game - same scenario, but switched sides. This time the Genestealers won in three turns - taking out six marines! While a small part of it may be because I was paying attention in the last game and saw what advantages and disadvantages the Genestealers and Marines had, I also simply had some really lucky dice rolls and some key moments coupled with some really bad dice rolls for the marines at the same time...

  4. SO cool! Great stuff guys. Such a classic game...

    1. Thanks Greg! We played three more yesterday afternoon. hopefully I'll get a chance to post some pics tonight. One of the scenarios was right out of the first edition game - I didn't play a lot of it, but I DO remember the "Suicide Mission!"