Category Archives: Science Fiction

Posts Infinity by Corvus Belli, and about Stargrunt II, Dirtside II, and Full Thrust II by Ground Zero Games.

Links: Ground Zero Games

The collected links from the old-format site for Dirtside II, Stargrunt II and Full Thrust, all from Ground Zero Games.

In need of weeding and there’s probably some duplicates! Updated 9 June 2011. If you have updated or new links to suggest, please contact us!

Dirtside 2 & General GZG Links

Stargrunt II

  • is the best SG2 website going. Lots of information, photos and other stuff, and still growing!
  • Alan Goodall’s HyperBear SG2 Pages has SG2 scenarios and photos, and the Bugs Don’t Surf Phalon Rules (beta release).
  • Laserlight’s has a variety of SG2 information, including TO&Es, and a nice layout.
  • Germ Warfare is an entertainingly different wargames site, with DS2 information & very cool 6mm & 25mm paper buildings to download.
  • The Firing Line is Brendan Robertson’s FT/SG2 site, with some information on the OUDF (Australia/NZ/South Pacific islands in the GZGverse.)
  • John Atkinson’s Nea Rhomaioi Empire pages – force compositions & vehicles for his own addition to the background of DS2/SG2/FT.
  • Stargrunt 40k has a conversion scheme for using GW 40k forces in SGII.
  • Agis Neugebauer has amazing galleries of his own miniature painting, including FT ships.
  • Etranger: The Militaries of 2300AD has dozens of descriptions and TO&Es of futuristic militaries. Designed for the 2300AD universe, but full of useful information for any SF gamer.
  • World Rank Insignia – just in case you want to go completely insane and paint rank badges on your 25mm or 15mm figures! Actually, this is an extremely well done site.

Full Thrust Links:

  • StarRanger – Starship Combat News — an excellent site for all sorts of space games, both miniatures and boardgames.
  • — still one of the best FT pages out there. Home of the FT FAQ.
  • Starship Jockey is Jerry Han’s excellent FT site.
  • is the homepage of the Traveller Power Projection group, who are using FT as the basis for a new Traveller-universe starship game. PP: Escort & PP: Fleet are both out now.
  • BITS UK Ltd (British Isles Traveller Support) are the publishers of Power Projection.
  • The GZGPedia is a player-driven project to flesh out the GZG universe.
  • The Unofficial Full Thrust WWWpage is Mark Siefert’s excellent & long-running FT site, with lots of resources & links available.
  • Beware the Beast of Aaarrggghh is Beth Fulton’s very nice gaming site – great FT starship pictures in her gallery. (Currently offline. Got a link?)
  • The Firing Line is Brendan Robertson’s FT/SG2 site, with some information on the OUDF (Australia/NZ/South Pacific islands in the GZGverse.)
  • NIFT – Noam Izenberg’s Full Thrust contains the FT Weapons & Defences Archive, and his New Isreali background, among other great resources.
  • Germ Warfare is an entertainingly different wargames site, with FT and DS2 information & house rules.
  • Laserlight’s Homepage has some ship designs, homebrew background information, and other stuff, with a nice looking layout.
  • Roger West’s GZG Pages has some FTFB ship designs, house rules, and a good links list.
  • Spinward Stars has FT fonts and play-aid graphics available.
  • Agis’ Miniatures Page has some incredibly well-painted minis, including FT ships.
  • The Starship Graveyard Scenario has been used as an FT convention game; it uses lots of recognizable science fiction vessels to get new people interested.
  • Tom’s Spaceship Miniatures & Game Lists

The Woods Tomorrow: Dangerous Flora in SG2

“If you go into the woods tomorrow,
You’re in for a HUGE surprise…”

In early April 2002 there was a very good discussion of alien, generally hostile plants on GZG-L. I thought the results were too good to just languish in the archives, so I’ve collected and HTMLed the emails. Original credit goes to the authors of the emails; all I’ve done is collect them here and do some very minor editing – spellchecking & HTML formating only.

These ideas range from fully-fledged ready to roll house rules to suggestions that suitably nasty minded GMs could incorporate into their own ideas! Have fun with them; I know I’ve been given several good – sorry, very nasty – ideas. But my local SG2 players read this site too, so no more from me…

Brian Bell started with:

I have been thinking of how to make the plant life more alien in a SG2 game. One option is Beth’s Triffids ( But I was looking to add flavor to an otherwise normal game of Stargrunt (rather than make the flora the major opponent). Some ideas that I have been toying with are:

Tar-Baby Plant:
The Tar-Baby Plant exudes a sticky sap that serves two purposes. First it
sticks to large animals which subsequently pollinate other Tar-Baby Plants.
Second, it traps insects, avians, and other small animals which it digests
to supplement the nutrients from the soil. Game Effect: Soldiers moving into contact with Tar-Baby Plant is given a suppression marker.

The Scare-Me-Not trees are very delicate. They extend long wispy strands into the atmosphere to harvest the multitude of gnats and bacteria prevalent in the planet’s atmosphere. However, these strands are a favorite of the local fauna. To protect themselves, the Scare-Me-Not trees pull in these strands whenever it senses movement. Game Effect: When a soldier moves within 2″ of a Scare-Me-Not tree replace the tree with a few small sticks (as it pulls in its foliage). The sticks provide no cover. This also gives away the position of the soldier.

Herd Bushes:
The Herd Bushes move around an area searching for nutrients and insect
nests. They tend to break up the ground which provides areas for other
plants to exploit. This effect is very slow, but noticeable over a period of
days. Game Effect: The Herd Bushes do not move fast enough to be modeled in a game. However, they do move enough that paths are almost impossible to keep clear, so satellite photos of an area are often incorrect (the photo shows a clearing, but it is choked with bushes.) Often runways and other “improved areas” fall to the Herd Bushes.

Nervous Nettle:
This bush has two defenses. First, it is full of sharp nettles. Animals
often look for easier food. Second, emits a pheromone that causes uneasyness in most warmblooded creatures (including humans). Game Effect: A unit with a soldier within 2″ of a Nervous Nettle plant, will panic if it fails any morale or confidence test. The unit may test again on subsequent activations (out of the effect of the NN plant) at TL:0, and if it passes regains the confidence level it had before testing under the influence of the NN.

This plant has the strange behavior of changing its color when touched. It
is thought that this is a byproduct of a chemical change the plant produces to make it taste bad to animals. Game Effect: When a soldier comes into contact with a Chromoplant, replace it with a plant of another color. Opponents observing should notice the change in color. This is bad for snipers trying to use hidden movement.

Karl Heinz added:

Kindling Grass:This grass grows, and produces a seed pod. It then dries itself out (dieing in the process), but leaving a very flammable chemical on the surface of the plant. The grass catches fire easily (heat from the sun, lightning, etc.). The heat of the fire ignites chemicals in the seed pod shooting the seeds high into the air to be deposited by winds upto miles away. Game Effect: Almost any fire action (shooting, artillery, etc.) will set the grass alight. Soldiers, vehicles with Chemical Fueled Engines (CFEs), ammo caches, etc. may be effected by the fires (use rules on p. 57 of Stargrunt).

Smoke Trees:
The wood of these trees does not splinter when hit, rather the section
hit disintegrates into fine dust. If the plants are shot at with
explosives, the effect is similar to smoke grenades.

Faraday Trees:
As a defence against being eaten, the plants have incorporated a fine
network of metallic fiber into their bark. Main efffect in game terms
is that it conducts electricity, enhancing ECM levels around the

Tanglefoot Wood:When the plant’s wood is damaged, the damaged part falls apart into long tangly fibers. Explosives produce an area that is difficult to move across.

Glass trees:
The tree’s wood is quite transparent, so it’s possible to discern
shapes behind the trunk (think of a thick glass or water column). Poor
visual cover, but as solid as any normal wood.

Lake Grass:
Vegetation that floats on ponds and looks like solid ground. Unable to
carry men (or just vehicles over a given weight ?) Effect depends on
the depth of the ponds.

DAWGIE added:

As a veteran of both the book and movie version of The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham and The Monster From Earth’s End by Murray Leinster, I have used mobile plants in my sci-fi games for many years. (also some less well known UK and American 1950s sci-fi epics involving
mobile plant horrors or alien /human mutations) since there were no Triffid or TMFEE models available , and my modeling
skills (then ) were not up to making my own, I bought and used el cheapo
plastic cacti from bakery supply stores (both the short flat leafed
version and the tall finger shaped versions-cannot remember the proper
names). Generally, Triffids/TMFEE were mobile carnivourous plants, caused
terror, moved slowly (in the case of TMFEE only during hours of
darkness) could sense their prey within a fixed range (6″), were very
tough and hard to kill (multiple hits, high armor value), were
vulnerable to fire, and very hard to “see” with the MARK I EYEBALL and
non-specific sensor scans, and reproduced rapidly where there was a good food supply.

The Triffid had a ranged attack and a close combat attack. both poisonous.

TMFEE had a close combat attack only, and this too was poisonous.
solitary hunter or packs of carnivores on the prowl. TMFEE will eat each

Other favorite boogery plants featured in my games were immobile
carnivores similar to the Venus flytraps or Audrey II (from The Little Shop of Horrors-both versions). This is one of my favorite really
stupid movies-especially V2 in which Audrey II became a rock star! I even bought 4 or 5 lead models (now OOP) of Audrey II made by Lance and Laser Miniatures, and have placed them on nicely terrained bases, among my other sci-fi terrain , for years. LOL, in just about every game appearance, Audrey II manages to eat one or two incautious soldiers! Solitary (usually) but can grow in clusters (colonies).

Here are some of my other plant boogers:

The Bag-Beast: (from book by John Brunner). This carnivore is immobile
and always lives near a body of water. It is very hard to detect with
the MARK I EYEBALL or sensors. The beast uses water pumped from the
nearby source to work with its own secretions to disolve a victim
within minutes of the unfortunate falling into the beast’s camouflaged
but open gut! Solitary.

Archer Bush: (from Men, Martians and Machines by Eric Frank Russel).
Immobile; fires flights of “clothyard arrows” at any warm blooded
critter or moving critter that gets too close to it! Poisoned and
barbed “arrows”, range 12 “. Solitary. I just had minor braindeath and cannot remember the details of the
very obnoxious tree from the same book.

Black Water: this horror appears as a pool of black water in jungle
areas. it is always surrounded by thick vegetation and trees., but is a
large immobile carnivourous plant that has several inches or a foot of
water floating on top of a fast acting digestive juices! penetrate the
water layer to get a drink, and meet the fast acting and poisonous
digestive acids! From Redliners by David Drake.

Sticky Trees & Logs: Another immobile horror that can be a standing
tree or as a tree or a rotting log. Anything that comes in contact with
it is IMMEDIATELY stuck to same, and is unable to break free. The
tree/logs then secrets digestive acids that disolve the unfortunate!
from Redliners by David Drake.

Spike Grass: From a story by CC Macapp in Worlds Of IF magazine way
back in the early 60s. Apears as “normal” grass up to 12″ tall until it
is trod upon by the unwary. WHEN TROD UPON, the grass reacts as if it
were punji-stakes, able to penetrate most foot wear and unprotected legs
or other parts of the anatomy that comes into contact with it. Once the
victim is impaled, barbs engage the flesh making removal almost
impossible (as well as escape!), and poisons enter the victim’s
bloodstream. Solitary patches, any size up to 12″x 12″

Flying Carpet: I do not know who to credit for this mobile monstrosity, but it
was in either Worlds of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Amazing,
Astounding or Analog way back in the late 50s or early 60s. This is a
flying, mossy looking plant carnivore that either lies on the ground
or hangs from tree limbs waiting for its dinner. The mossy surface is
chameleon like, and the carpet is A LOT TOUGHER than it looks. Fire is
the most effective weapon to use against them. The carpet envelopes
its prey, sting ing he/she/it with thousands of paralyzing and
poisonous barbs. The carpet then eats the prey by disolving he/she/it
with digestive acids. Solitary hunter, but, with ample food supply
can be found in large packs. Fly up to 12″. Close combat attack only.

Sunflowers: Plants that can use sunlight to create heat rays. This
nasty is from the Ringworld by Larry Niven, but I am not able to
remember the details about it right now. It was immobile and grew in
small , large, or huge patches, able to project those heat rays in 360
horizontal or 180s vertical fields of fire.

There are others but this ought to be enough to provide some ideas
for the GM to use on those who venture in the alien wilderness today!

John Crimmins added:

LISA: Would a rose by any other name not smell as sweet?

BART: Not if you called it a stench blossom.

Stenchblossoms are lovely plants, truly: renowned throughout the galaxy for their
lovely hues
and delicate structures…as well as for their nearly lethal funk. It’s an incredible
combining the worst qualities of rotting meat, spoiled cheese, and burning plastic,
and it is
fully capable of knocking a buzzard off a dung heap at a distance of 200 yards. Game effect: Any squad within 3″ of a stenchblossom grove gains a Supression
marker at the beginning of their activation. This will happen every turn that the
squad is subjected to the awful smell. Troops wearing sealed gear may be
immune to the effects of the stenchblossom: GM’s call.

The Land Anemone has a thick trunk surrounded by long, trailing fronds. These
fronds, which appear slightly furry when examined closely, are actually coated
with thousands of tiny needles…needles which will easily break off and imbed
themselves in anything that touches the fronds. The resulting wounds are too
tiny to be noticed, but the poison that they contain is *highly* irritating,
causing the victim to feel as though his skin is actually burning. Land anemone
wounds are rarely fatal; a cheap and effective antitoxin is readily available.
They remain, however, highly annoying. Game effect: whenever a figure comes into contact with a land anemone grove,
he suffers an automatic attack with d8 firepower and d4 impact. If a hit is scored,
treat the victim as Wounded until he can receive medical attention.

As a side note, let me recommend Wayne Barlowe’s Expedition: Being an
Account in Words and Artwork of the 2358 A.D. Voyage to Darwin IV
. It’s an
incredibly detailed look at a very alien ecology, and includes a lot of things that
could be adapted for gaming purposes. And man, the art is fantastic. And of course, there’s always the Shrieker fungus, straight out of D&D: an
oversized mushroom that produces a high pitched screech when approached too closely. Make a nice low-tech security fence, wouldn’t it?

Flak Magnet added:

During a briefing before going to Haiti (or was it Panama?), we were
informed that there were trees with seed-pods that would “explode” if
disturbed… After the seed-pods were “ripe” they dry out and internal fibers would
shorten, compressing the pulp at the center. while anaerobic
decomposition would release gases from the pulp which were trapped by
the fibers (and a membrane, I guess) so that eventually, either some
disturbance would cause them to burst or they’d just pop on their own. The force of the scattered seeds was enough to embed them into bare skin
if you happened to be within 10 feet of an exploding pod.

To xeno-ficate that type of tree: Make the released gases pyrotechnic-ally reactive with oxygen (something
that wasn’t an issue until we terra-formed the planet, meddling
eartlings) or maybe even nasty enough to qualify as a chemical agent. Make the seed-pods “launch” themselves by some kind of tensioned fibers
that are arranged in the stalk when the tree is disturbed/damaged. Symbiotic relationship with beetles that eat the decaying pulp and wind
up with seeds stuck to their bodies, the beetles survive the bursting
(sans fire) and burrow into the victim.

Another concept applying the stored-energy or tensioned fibers is
Twitch Trees. Plants with a relatively supple trunk that has fibers
running up and down it’s lenght as well as in bundles crossing it in
diagonals. When “attacked” the tree uses the energy stored in the
fibers to whip it’s trunk down and smack the offending critter that’s
gnawing on it’s bark. This could be made nasty if it had thorns/sticky sap and a carnivorous
nature. Though only harmful to infantry. If a heavy bulbous top was
added, (for storing water/etc) it could also prove disruptive to light
gev’s or over vehicles.

“B Lin” added:

…Perhaps a nasty type of Carnivorous Bamboo that is insidious. If a unit stays more than two turns inside a CB grove, it sends out tiny hair-like shoots covered in neuro-toxin. If they contact exposed flesh, the victim is paralyzed. The bamboo then grows a “feeder shoot” that is hollow which it injects into the victim then releases enzymes to turn the victim into fertilizer goo which then soaks into the ground and into the roots.

Any comments, additions, new ideas or similar, drop them on the GZG-L mailing list!

Kra’Vak House Rules in Stargrunt II


By David D. Taylor

Kra’Vak Design Doctrine: The Kra’Vak use a doctrine of a 4 soldier element unit known as a claw. Most fists consist of 2 claws and a commander, with specialist elements consisting of only one claw and commander. The basic Kra’Vak force is based on a fist of two four man claws with a leader. The second claw can function independently as detached units while the Fist Overseer remains with the first claw giving the platoon a very flexible force. It is a matter of pride with most arms that the first combat fist is made up of the oldest and most experienced warriors (veterans). Normally the Last fist is made up of the inexperienced, new recruits (greens). This same convention is used by all platoons with the difference that the power armour and scout recruits have proven themselves in the combat platoon and the lowest rating will be regular with the first squad being elite. The rest of the squads will be veteran.

The standard ground combat arm consists of the command fist, six combat fists, and two augmented weapons fists. It will also have a sniper and a Sia’Na as an independent figure. The Sia’Na will attach themselves to the command fist. Both the standard power armour arm and standard scout arm consist of the command fist and four combat fists. The standard power armour is classed as fast and heavy. The scout arm also is trained to act as forward observers for artillery strikes. They will always have enough Kr’Gak riding beasts attached for every member of the arm. They are trained to fight both from the back of the Kr’Gak and dismounted as dragoons.

It is not uncommon for a combat arm to be mechanized with the addition of 9 Tu’Ha light ICVs. The movement rate of the power armour precludes the need for transport in the combat arena, and the stealth benefits of the Kr’Gak would be undermined by having vehicles attached to them. There may also be one or two Ha’Iv main battle tanks and as much as a fist of Sia’Kol Infantry Walker infantry walkers.

The basic rifle for the Kra’Vak foot soldier is the Ra’Sak gauss rifle. This weapon is configured to fire shot bursts of up to four 4-mm sabots at very high velocity. The limit is to prevent a soldier in the grips of Ro’Kah from emptying the weapon in a single uncontrolled burst. In game terms it is a firepower 2 impact D12 weapon.

The Da’Sak Gauss Machine Gun is a larger, fully automatic weapon firing an 8mm armour piercing sabot. It is often used with a giro-stabilized frame. It is a support firepower D10 impact D12 weapon.

The Va’Sak gauss tank killer is the standard anti-armour weapon. It consists of 3 fixed barrels and a fourth sabot in a chamber in the center of the weapon that is cycled into the first chamber after it is fired. The sabot is a 40mm ferrous iron jacketed spent uranium armour piercing shell with a shaped charge behind it to drive it further into the target upon impact. In game terms it as a 4 shot IAVR firepower D10 impact D12* weapon. While the weapon cannot be reloaded on the battlefield it is not considered disposable and is carried with the soldier for as long as is possible. For long term deployments extra, loaded Va’Saks can be carried in the Tu’Ha and can be exchanged by spending an action in contact with the ICV.

The general sniper rifle in use is the Ki’Sak. It is a single shot gauss rifle firing a 25mm armour-piercing sabot. Support firepower D10 impact D12

Independent Characters

Sia’Na: The presence of a Sia’Na on the battlefield can have a calming effect to all the forces on the field. Like a command unit a Sia’Na can pass his activation on to other units. Like a command unit his one activation will give the next unit two actions. The limitations is that they can only be used to take a morale check or pass on down the line. A failed check in this action will not negatively affect the squad’s morale. The normal morale check will still risk lowering the morale as per the normal rules. The squad can improve its morale 2 levels by passing both tests. It is possible to have more then one Sia’Na attached to a platoon for special operations. Because of the rarity of the Sia’Na it is all but unheard of to have one attached to each fist. To do so for one Arm would use more then half the available Sia’Nas for the entire body.

Sniper: The sniper is always an Elite. The need for them to work alone, close to or behind, the enemy lines requires they have the greatest possible control over Ro’Kah.

Confidence Levels:

At Confident (CO) a unit may make any actions that are normally available to it.

At STEADY (ST) they are unable to transfer actions.

At SHAKEN (SH) a unit may not enter cover or retreat from an enemy unless it passes a REACTION TEST.

At BROKEN (BR) a unit must use one of its actions to advance towards the nearest enemy. They may not go into position. If they are fired upon they we immediately drop to routed.

At ROUTED (RO) the unit must use both its actions to attempt to close assault the nearest enemy unit. If they fail both reactions tests passed from a Sia’Na they will close assault the nearest unit regardless if it’s friend or foe. If the Sia’Na that transferred the action is within close assault range they will assault that unit even if there is one closer.

Kra’Vak Physiology

Zha’Vak has a very thin ozone layer, as a result the Kra’Vak are much less susceptible to radiation then humans. The low level radiation from spent uranium munitions as well as low level dirty nukes do not have any major effect on them.

The Kra’Vak Physiology is somewhat redundant. With the exception of the brain they have at least 2 organs to perform every task. This mixed with a dermis that is on average two to three times tougher then a human’s and you have a very tough creature. Even though they wear Partial Light armour they are considered Full-Suit Light armour (D8).

The Kra’Vak hip and knee joint does not allow it to sit in what humans would consider a comfortable position. In their resting state they crouch. The seating in all vehicles is similar to a high performance motorcycle with the addition of a padded plate to rest their chest on. There are also braces on the calf and the small of the back to hold them in place during zero-g or rough maneuvering.

Progression of Command Levels:

  • Team = Claw
  • Squad = Fist
  • Platoon = Arm
  • Company = Body
  • Battalion = War Family
  • Regiment = War Clan

Basic Ground Combat Arm: (Normal Troops on Foot: movement 6)
Command Fist: (9 men at full strength)

  • Arm Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
    • First Claw
      • Claw Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Communications Specialist with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
    • Second Claw
      • Claw Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Da’Sak Gauss Machine Gunner

The command Fist has a sniper with a Ki’Sak gauss sniper rifle and a Sia’Na with Ra’Sak gauss rifle attached.

Basic Combat Fist: (9 men at full strength)

  • Fist Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
    • First Claw
      • Claw Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Da’Sak Gauss Machine Gunner
    • Second Claw
      • Claw Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Va’Sak Gauss Tank Killer

Augmented Weapons Fist: (9 men at full strength)

  • Fist Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
    • First Claw
      • Claw Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Da’Sak Gauss Machine Gunner \
      • Da’Sak Gauss Machine Gunner
      • Da’Sak Gauss Machine Gunner
    • Second Claw
      • Claw Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Va’Sak Gauss Tank Killer
      • Va’Sak Gauss Tank Killer
      • Va’Sak Gauss Tank Killer

Power armour Arm (Fast Power armour: Movement 12)
Command Fist: (5 men at full strength)

  • Arm Overseer
    • Claw
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with MLP and with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Communications Specialist with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Da’Sak Gauss Machine Gunner

Powered Combat Fist: (5 men at full strength)

  • Fist Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
    • Claw
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with MLP and with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Da’Sak Gauss Machine Gunner

Scout Arm (Very Light Troops: Movement 8)
Command Fist: (5 men at full strength)

  • Arm Overseer with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
    • Claw
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Communications Specialist with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
    • Five Kr’Gak Riding Beasts Attached (Movement 10)

Scout Combat Fist: (5 men at full strength)

  • Fist Overseer
    • Claw
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
      • Rifleman with Ra’Sak gauss rifle
    • Five Kr’Gak Riding Beasts Attached

Kra’Vak Vehicles:
The basic design doctrine is very simple; vehicles are designed to fit a specific role as well as possible. The idea is to mix different specialized vehicles to best meet any eventuality. A commander can achieve great renowned by coming up with unusual ways to combine resource to accent the unit’s strengths and overcome its limits.
Sia’Kol Infantry Walker
The Sia’Kol is unusual in that it is a 6 legged walker. It is usually meant to fill the place of the Tu’HA for the Power armoured fists. It is also the only vehicle in common use that is not GRAV based. (I use a Reaper CAV scorpion figure)
Class 1 Vehicle, Infantry Walker Mobility, Armour Value 1, 1x Class 2 Gauss Cannon in Fixed Mount, Gauss Machine Gun (SAW)
Tu’Ha light ICV
This is the standard workhorse of the Kra’Vak mechanized infantry. It is meant to support the disembarked infantry agents other foot soldiers and has a very limited anti-vehicle capability. The 10-man capacity allows for the addition of a sniper or other Independent Character. If there is no 10th soldier then the space can be used to carry 2 extra Va’Sak Gauss Tank Killers. The Va’Sak soldier must spend an action in contact with the back of the vehicle with the vehicle stopped to swap weapons.
Class 3 Vehicle, Armour Value 3, Grav Mobility, 10 Units of Infantry Transport, 2x Class 1 Gauss Cannon in Turret Mount
Ha’Iv main battle tanks
This is the most common Kra’Vak vehicle seen on the battlefield. It is a very capable tank mounting a very large main gun. It suffers in that it does not have the flexibility to adapt to changes in the battlefield that some human designs have. This can be seen as a limit with most of the Kra’Vak vehicles.
Class 3 Vehicle, Armour Value 3, Grav Mobility, 1x Class 5 Gauss Cannon in Turret Mount

Stargrunt II Xenomorphs (Aliens aliens!)

‘We Believe A Xenomorph May Be Involved…’

Rules for Ripley’s Nightmares in Stargrunt II.
Written by Brian Burger, June 2001

The aliens of the ‘Alien’ movie series are many people’s favourite nasty bugs; this is an attempt to portray them in Ground Zero Games’ Stargrunt II.

General: The aliens are best played by a referee, with players taking the roles of terrorized colonists and/or hapless Marines. To get the right feel, the playing area should be very tight, either the corridors and ducts of a base or building, or a heavily urbanized zone; any playing area should have lots of hiding places, nooks and crannies for slavering alien beasties to hide in.

The Xenomorphs: These seem to come in a variety of forms, probably representing different maturity levels of the organism.

  • Small Hunters: Probably immature forms of the Hunter xenomorph. Movement 8″ or d8x2/Armour d6/Close Assault d8.
  • Hunters: Larger, faster, more dangerous mature forms of xenomorph. Move 10″ or d10x2/Armour d8/Close Assault d10.
  • Queens: Very large, incredibly dangerous breeding form, rarely seen (thankfully). Move 10″ or d10x2/Armour d12/CA d12x2.
  • ‘Facehuggers’: The larval, active breeding form of the xenomorph, given their unofficial name for their habit of attaching to victim’s faces before inserting an egg down the victim’s throat. Facehuggers die after inserting this egg, and gestation time is unknown at this time. If the facehugger’s ‘CA’ roll succeeds, one member of the target squad is hugged, and is counted as untreated wounded. Move Special/Armour n/a/CA d12.

Special Morale: Aliens always count as Elite 1 for all leadership checks; note that the CA die is usually different, which is not usual SG2 practice. Further, aliens count as High Mission Motivation at all times, and when an alien squad is activated they get one free Clear Suppression roll, in addition to the usual two actions.

In Close Assault, zenomorphs count as 3x their own numbers for determining Confidence Checks. Queens always cause checks at +2, regardless of the numbers involved.

If zenomorphs loose 50% or more of their unit in one attack, they will fall back as soon as they are able.

Extra Morale Rules for Humans:

Panic: Zenomorphs cause Panic checks when first seen by Untrained, Green and Regular troops; if Panic is caused it is treated a bit differently from regular Panic, as follows: if a unit Panics when confronted or attacked by xenomorphs, it will flee, not instantly freeze. The unit will make one Combat Move back along the route it has been following, or directly away from the oncoming xenomorph unit. After this panicked movement, the squad will freeze in place, and be subject to all the usual Panic rules as laid out in the SG2 rules. Note that this check will take place during a CA run by xenomorphs, if that is the first sighting; this may make it impossible for the squad to make it’s usual rolls to stand and receive the assault.

New/Adapted Morale & Reaction Tests:

  • squad attacked unsuccessfully by facehugger: Threat +1
  • squad attacked successfully by facehugger: Threat +2
  • first sighting/attack by xenomorphs, including facehuggers: Panic Check for Untrained, Green & Reg squads.
  • All other checks in SG2 apply.

Have fun, and remember… “It’s a bug hunt.”

Copyright Brian Burger, 2001.

If you want more information on the movies, thank the IMDB: Alien (1979)Aliens (1986)Alien3 (1992)Alien: Resurrection (1997). There are persistant rumours about “Alien 5”, but nothing concrete yet, as far as I know.

Dirtside II House Rules

A group of us here in Victoria, BC, Canada who play Dirtside II regularly. Individually & collectively, we’ve come up with some house rules to modify parts of DS2 to our liking. Feel free to use our rules if you like them, and if you’ve got house rules that you want to see posted, contact me.

House Rules: Cascading MoraleOverwatchHull Down & CoverArtillery Spotter DronesHidden Deployment & Observation Posts.

Cascading Morale

(for DS2 & SG2)
Continue reading Dirtside II House Rules

Stargrunt II House Rules 2

Industrial Accidents in Stargrunt II

The Dangers of Firefights Near Explosive, Hazardous, Poisonous or Flammable Materials!
Written by Brian Burger, June 2001.

If a squad’s target during a fire action is sheltering on or behind, or within 3″ of any designated structure, consult the following tables immediately after the squad’s fire die have been rolled:

On a MISS, fire is too scattered to have any effect.

On a MINOR hit to the target squad, roll d10: 1-5 No Further Effect, 6 Vapour Leak, 7-9 Fire, 10 Explosion.

On a MAJOR hit to the target squad, roll d10: 1-3 No Further Effect, 4 Vapour Leak, 5-8 Fire, 9-10 Explosion.

If you have deliberately targeted the structure, roll as if it was a building, then add +1 to any Effects rolls.
If you have hit the structure with a heavy weapon, add +1 for every TWO IMPACT DIE rolled. (or each x2 multiplier used)

Vapour Leak: The shot releases noxious or corrosive gasses into the air, which form a cloud downwind for d6″. Any infantry squads or open vehicles caught in or passing through the cloud take a d8 attack vs their armour; fully armoured & sealed vehicles treat it as a non-penetrating impact. The cloud dissipates at the end of the turn it formed in.

Fire: A fire starts on and/or around the structure, treated exactly like the Fire rules in SG2’s Optional Rules section. However, there is the risk of further Explosions. Every turn, roll a d10 for each fire on the table. On a 1, the fire is extinguished; on a 10, there is an explosion. See below.

Explosion: Treat exactly as a Medium GP artillery shell impacting on the point of the structure nearest the firing unit.

Comments: These rules probably shouldn’t be used for every SGII scenario, but for certain ones taking place in densely industrial settings they should be considered. Making players actually pay attention to what’s downrange when they’re blazing away adds a strong element of tension to smaller scenari

Stargrunt II House Rules, Part I

Semi-Autonomous Combat System (SACS)

Fixed (sentry guns a la ‘Aliens’ movie) or Mobile (mini-tanks a la ‘X-Com’ computer game). (F-SACS or M-SACS)

Target as Size 1 point targets for both Fixed & Mobile.

Design:Fixed and Mobile SACS can mount any TWO SAW-type weapons, or any ONE of the following: any Class 1 heavy weapon, GMS/L or GMS/H.

Firing is as normal for vehicle-mounted weapons. Most SACSs will be SUP or EHN systems. SAW-mounting SACSs will roll Quality as VET (d10) plus one Support die per SAW. E.g. a twin Gauss SAW SACS will roll 3 d10s.

M-SACSs can be any Mobility type. Tracked and Grav are the two most commonly used Mobilities.

SACSs of both types have d10 Armour. F-SACS can be armoured up to d12 Armour; they can also be designed to retract into bunkers. While deployed in firing position, such F-SACS have either d10 or d12 Armour depending on design; when retracted, they are protected by the armour of the bunker housing them, but cannot fire. It takes 1 action to extend or retract such an F-SACS system.

SACSs do not get the usual ‘free’ SAW of other vehicles, only the weapons specified in their design.

Command & Control: SACSs are independent units, forming ‘squads’ of one or possibly two units. SACSs do not have Confidence levels, nor do they take Suppression markers from fire. SACSs can be activated during the regular turn sequence if desired, or left to engage targets on their own. For other applicable rolls, SACS are Leader 1s, and should be given any color 1 chit for recordkeeping.

M-SACS on independent activation can move half their regular movement (6″ or d12) with one or both of their actions.

SACS on independent free fire will fire at the END of all other activations.

ALL SACS WILL ALWAYS ENGAGE THE NEAREST TARGET TO THEM, modified by the following rules, and if two targets are at equal range, use the following rules. If two identical targets are at identical ranges, determine target randomly.

  • SAW-equipped SACS will target infantry over light (Size 1 and 2) vehicles, and those over larger vehicles.
  • Gun-equipped SACS (those with Size 1 weapons) will engage light vehicles and infantry equally (random roll if needed), and those over larger vehicles.
  • GMS equipped SACS will engage larger vehicles over lighter ones. They are incapable of engaging infantry, and will not do so.

There is one last way to activate SACS: as part of an infantry squad’s activation, with the SACS acting as a squad SAW. Both the infantry & the SAC System have to have LOS to the same target. The squad takes a Communication action as it’s first, then a Firing action. If the Comm roll is passed, the SACS adds it’s Support die to the squad’s fire, and both are then finished as usual. (The Reorg action represents the squad leader’s communications with the SACS AI system, and sharing of targeting information)

Limited Ammunition: Man-portable F-SACSs could have limited ammunition available in some scenarios. How limited depends on referee’s decision – I’d say four to six chits, each of which is one Firing action. As a carrying load, I’d say such an F-SACS would be an Encumbering load for three or four troopers.

Building-mounted F-SACSs or regular M-SACSs wouldn’t normally have ammo limits, save maybe for GMS units. If GMS/P equipped M-SACSs are used, they can only mount 1 GMS/P, but ignore or increase ammo limits.

Models: There are a couple of 25mm Sentry Guns, and otherwise they’d be good scratch-building or kitbashing projects. For a mobile system I’d be inclined to start with a largish 6mm tank chassis , and replace the turret – I’d think more of these systems would be open-mount type things, for weight saving.

John Crimmins wrote:
There was a pack of true 25mm Sentry Guns produced by Leading Edge Games. Not bad figures, but kinda drab. They do not look much like the ones from the movie. Grenadier/Scotia/etc. produced some Resin SGuns for the Kryomek line. These look more like permanent installations than anything else, but they are VERY nice indeed. And just last week, I saw a pack of SGuns for White Wolf’s “Trinity” line. Excellent sculpting, though they may be a bit big for some–they are 28mm scale. I’m certainly going to get a few packs, though, for use with my Grenadier “Future Warriors”. Lastly, didn’t GZG produce some mobile SGuns? I have at least one of them–a Gatling Gun mounted on a small hover chassis–and I seem to remember a GMS version, as well.

It sounds like 15mm Stargrunters are out of luck for the moment – it’s scratchbuilding or go without for us. Fortunately, I like scratchbuilding and kitbashing, so I’m modifying a spare 6mm grav MBT chassis into a single-SAW mounting M-SACS. I’m also going to get ahold of some larger grav or tracked tank hulls and make slightly larger M-SACS. Scratchbuilding F-SACS (sentry guns) will take a bit longer – some open-mount sentry guns first, then later bunker-mounted emplaced guns when I finally get started on buildings.

Brian Burger (thanks to GZG-L members as well)

Mounted Troops in Stargrunt II

Wayne Pollerd

In the following rules these term should be taken as:

  • Mounted infantry should be taken to mean an infantry squad riding small, unarmed one man vehicles, used mainly to enhance the moblity of the unit. This can include things like motor bikes, grav powered bikes or even jet skis.
  • Dismounted infantry is a mounted infantry squad that has gotten off their bikes.

Being mounted on a bike gives mounted infantry a basic move of 12 and a combat move of D12 x 2. The mobility type of the bike (ie. Grav powered, high-mobility wheeled, etc) is used to determines the effects of terrain on the movement of a mounted infantry squad. In the case of grav powered bikes, the power plant is not powerful enough to allow them to use high mode movement or popup attacks. (This keeps the production costs down). When encumbered mounted infantry squads have a mobility of 10 and a combat move of D10 x 2.

Dismounted infantry use the mobility and terrain modifications to movement of normal infantry and when encumbered are effected as per normal infantry.

Mounted infantry squads can make full use of available cover but the mobility type of their bikes will will often limit the type of terrain they can enter. Mounted infantry squads can not go into position. Dismounted infantry follow the same rules for cover and terrain restrictions as regular infantry and if they go into position are assumed to have moved their bikes into covered positions as well (ie laid them on the ground).

Due to the restrictive nature of powered armour, only troopers wearing non powered armour can be mounted on bikes. The norm is to wear partial light armour.

Mounted infantry can dismount during a reorganise action. The advantage of this is that when dismounted they no longer have a range restriction on their weapons and they can also use any IAVRs they may be carrying (See Fire Procedure below). Unless you form a detached element the entire squad has to be either dismounted or mounted. While dismounted the squad is treated like a normal infantry squad which allows them to leave their bikes and move into buildings and other terrain that may have been impassible to them while mounted. To remount, the dismounted squad must be move so that all the dismounted figures and the bike models are within a 6″ diameter circle and then they need to perform a reorganise action.

A dismounted infantry squad can move their bikes while on foot by the simply pushing them and should be considered encumbered for movement purposes while doing so. It takes one figure to move a single bike. Enemy squads can also move unattended bikes in the same manner, though they will have to deal with any guards first. If the dismounted infantry push their bikes into terrain that would normally be prohibited because of the movement type of the bikes, they can not mount their bikes again until they leave this terrain.

Shooting at mounted infantry: A mounted infantry squad is considered a size 1, dispersed target. The fact that they are mounted on small one man vehicles does not make them point targets. Hence when you shoot at a mounted infantry squad you use the standard fire procedure for firing at a normall infantry squad. This includes heavy weapons only getting an impact dice of a D8.

Shooting at dismounted infantry: When shooting at dismounted infantry use the normal fire procedure for shooting at a normal infantry squad and ignore the bike models. If a dismounted squad takes casualties that result in the death of a trooper, his bike will be left behind for latter salvage (assuming their side wins the battle). See MOVING CASUALTIES for more details. While dismounted, a mounted infantry squad is effected by all combat results as if they were a normal infantry squad.

Shooting at bike models: If a mounted infantry unit dismounts and then moves away from their bikes there is a possibility that the opposing player will want to shoot at the bike models. I would suggest that the bike models should not be considered a valid target but if you must shoot them, then treat each bike as an individual point target with armour 0 (D6). This means it will take a number of separate fire actions to destroy all the bikes and this is time you should really have been using to deal with the dismounted riders instead.

Mounted infantry shooting:
Due to the need to concentrate on manoeuvring their bikes across the battle field the mounted infantry do not have a lot of time to aim at distant targets. In fact a lot of their fire is just pointing their weapons in the general direction of the enemy and letting rip with a burst of fire, making it inaccurate at anything over close range. Hence mounted infantry weapons can only be fired at close range (within one range band). Due to the need to use one hand to steer and the fact that anything other than small arms is too cumbersome to carry and use on a bike, mounted infantry can only be armed with infantry small arms (No heavy weapons or support weapons). Theone exception to this is that mounted infantry may carry IAVRs strapped to their bikes but the IAVRs can only be fired when dismounted.

When a mounted infantry unit first receives incoming fire the troopers will do one of two things. If the fire is light and inaccurate the normal response is to hunch down low and gun the bike’s engine so as to quickly remove themselves from the fire zone. If the troopers judge the fire to de too dangerous to continue they will instantly bring their bikes to a sudden halt and quickly take cover on the ground, normally behind their recently vacated bikes. This has become know, rather affectionately amongst mounted infantry units, as a ‘crash dismount’. On the other hand normal leg infantry call it ‘cowering in the dirt and hugging your bike like a long lost sweetheart’ but everything depends on your point of view. A crash dismount is not meant to be a new action just a nice descriptive term for the result of failing the reaction test.

To see what your mounted infantry squads reaction to incoming fire is you should make a reaction test with a threat level based on the number ofsuppression counters it has. The threat level is +2 for the first counter and +4 for the second counter. If a mounted infantry squad gets a third counter they automatically perform a crash dismount with no reaction test being made. If a mounted infantry squad suffers a casualty from incoming fire they will also perform an automatic crash dismount again without a reaction test being made.

If a mounted infantry squad passes the reaction test to stay mounted they can continue to perform movement and leadership actions while affected by a suppression counter but no fire actions. They can also perofrm a reorganise action if they are in cover. Suppression counters can be removed as normal. A dismounted infantry squad and one that has performed a crash dismount are affected by suppression counters like a normal infantry squad and cannot remount until all its suppression counters have been removed.

A mounted infantry squad can only perform a close assault action if it currently has no suppression counters. See CLOSE COMBAT for more information about mounted infantry performing a close assault.

Suppression information about mounted infantry performing a close assault:
Suppression counters effect a mounted infantry squads ability to perform final defensive fire during a close assault in exactly the same way as they effect normal infantry and final defencive fire is the only way a mounted infantry squad can perform a fire action while affected by a suppression.

Casualties are determined for mounted infantry squads in the same manner as when firing at a normal infantry squad (ie. the fire needs to be fully effective and the firer needs to beat the armour dice of the trooper with his impact dice). If you get a kill result in it is assumed that you have hit and penetrated the fuel tank / engine compartment resulting in a spectacular explosion and crash that kills any riders. If you get a wounded result it is assumed that you have damaged the bike causing it to crash and in the resulting crash the rider is also wounded.

Treatment & Movement of Casualties:
During a reorganise action it is assumed that the squad members attempt to treat any casualties as well as attempting to repair damaged bikes. Roll a D6 for administering to the wounded as usual. If the roll results in a full recovery it is assumed that the squad members also manage to get his bike back into running condition. Any other result on the treatment dice means that the bike has been damaged beyond the ability of hasty field repairs to fix.

Moving Casualties:
Untreated casualties: When a mounted infantry squad moves with untreated casualties, it is assumed that two of the wounded troopers squad mates are holding the casualty onto his bike and moving the bike and rider along with the unit. This means it takes two squad members to move a single untreated casualty. The unit is considered to be encumbered when moving casualties.

Treated casualties: When a mounted infantry squad moves with treated casualties it is assumedthat the treated casualty is carried on the back of a fellow squad members bike. Hence it takes only one squad member to move a single casualty. The unit is also considered to be encumbered when moving treated casualties.


A mounted infantry squad can initiate and be the target of a close assault action like a normal infantry squad. If the mounted infantry squad is the attacker they get a ONE DICE SHIFT up for the first round of close combat, this die shift does not apply when they are the defender and is in addition to any other die shifts that they qualify for under as normal (ie. Cover, close assault weapons etc.).

If a close assault action continues past a single round of combat it is assumed that the mounted infantry has dismounted and if they are subsequently forced to withdraw from the combat they will abandon their bikes when they fall back. If they win the combat they will not pursue the enemy for this would mean abandoning their bikes also. If the combat is resolved in a single round the mounted infantry are assumed to still be mounted and can hence pursue the retreating enemy provided they pass therequired reaction test. This means that follow through attacks can only be carried out by mounted infantry if they defeat their opponents in a single round.

If a mounted infantry squad is the target of a close assault action, passes the confidence test to receive the charge and is still mounted and able to perform movement actions (ie. They have previously passed the reaction test for not doing a crash dismount. See SUPPRESSION above for details) the player can chose to have them withdraw even if they have suppression counters. If the mounted infantry is dismounted then they should follow the normal rules which in that case the suppression counter would stop them from withdrawing.

Mounted infantry who suffer the effects of final defensive fire while performing a close assault are affected in exactly the same manner as a normal infantry squad. If they suffer a casualty from final defensive fire they will not perform a crash dismount until after they have fallen back.

If involved in a close assault action, as either the target or attacker while dismounted, a mounted infantry squad should be treated like a normal infantry squad and receive the normal die shifts.

Wayne P