Saturday, April 20, 2024

BAMS Launch – v0.1

Welcome to the first Bromad Academy Mission System (BAMS) release notes! If you’re wondering what BAMS is or want more information on our Bakunin thirst trap Professor Calaveras, have a look at the landing page below!

For the launch of BAMS, we were aligned to the Late Night Wargames show as the announcement vehicle, so things aren’t 100% complete yet, especially the mission pack. We are pretty confident in our rules patches though, and definitely encourage testing and feedback.

Rules Patches

For this initial release, we set a hard cutoff at three rules patches. The selection of these patches over potential others should not be interpreted as commentary on the relative severity of the issues being addressed. Let’s get into each of them now:

Reinforcements as Intended

It’s no secret that Corvus Belli’s launch of the Reinforcements rules was polarizing. We’re of the opinion that the original designer intent of allowing reinforcement and non-reinforcement lists to be played against one another is great, so we’re adding that back in with these rules:

The quick summary is you can just straight up play reinforcements versus non-reinforcement lists. To model the original “Commlink tax,” we are capping the main section of the reinforcement lists at 240 points and 4.5 SWC with the normal 100 point/2 SWC reinforcement group.

We chose this patch because it opens up an entirely new game mode for people that enjoy it while letting those that don’t necessarily like it that much to still get games in. There are definite balance and game pacing concerns to look into, but giving players a consistent way to try out a new game mode will help us get data. Plus it’s fun, and that’s the point!

Guided BS

Guided missiles are an important part of the game. They grant some much-needed teeth to a repeater network in the reactive turn, give you lateral play options against hard AROs, and in general just offer a tool for use during the game. Guided missiles are also one of the least interactive mechanics in a game that promises “It’s always your turn!” They are also responsible for many anecdotes of newer or even veteran players just straight up leaving the game because of negative play experiences.

Setting up a guided attack isn’t cheap, it involves a non-trivial amount of resource expenditure, so it was important for us to not just straight up negate the benefits. Still, we had to provide the defending player some counter-play options, which are detailed here:

The quick summary is the primary target of the guided attack may now Reset (U-Turn) in ARO as a face to face at WIP -3 (due to Targeted, maybe more if more states are applied). If the Reset wins, you don’t get splatted and clear Targeted. It’s quite possible that more changes will be necessary, or that this one is too strong/too weak. We simply don’t know, and we need your help to playtest!

Natural Born Warrior

Finally, we’re changing Natural Born Warrior to just subtract 2 from your Martial Arts level. This way models like Shinobu and Mushashi aren’t just totally nerfed, as they’d still be MA3, but models that are MA1 or MA2 still have their Martial Arts canceled. Full details here:

It’s not a solution for the significant proliferation of NBW across profiles, but it does at least give us the opportunity to soften the impact of a rule that many find irritating.

Mission Pack

For the mission pack, we are in a weird position. We ran out of time to fully populate the 15-20ish missions we were targeting for the initial release, simply because we ran out of time before the Late Night Wargames show announcing BAMS. We’ll continue to populate the mission list out as we go before we officially mark BAMS v0.1 as “stable,” but we do have a few missions ready to play (and some have even been playtested!).

You’ll note that many of the missions were written by a particular set of people. This is not because we think those missions are better or worse than other community written missions. It is entirely because we have access to them and got consent from the authors to publish them on very short notice. We’ll introduce a more formal way to submit missions for inclusion in future versions of BAMS as our development process matures.

Here’s a list of the missions we’ve got so far at time of writing:

  • Resilience Operations Variants
  • Black Spot – Each player chooses some of opponent’s models to kill, get points for doing so.
  • Blockade Runner – Get your HVT to opponent’s DZ through some TR Mk12 turrets!
  • Critical Mass – Tug of war on a beacon that turns into an HVT on turn 3!
  • Holographic Havoc – I heard you like Holoechoes!
  • Last Resort – Unmasking with Impersonators (Biometric visor now relevant!)
  • Radiation Leak – The armory is an open reactor core! Asymmetric scoring hijinks ensue!

And that’s it! We’ll be releasing more information soon as time allows. Happy gaming!

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