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The Blood Deserts of Auros IX
Intro <> 2 Player Rules <> Multiplayer Rules <> Alternate Scenario <> Battle Summaries

The Blood Deserts of Auros IX: Multiplayer Rules
The Blood Deserts of Auros IX Campaign is designed for two players, one using Space Marines, the other using Orks. However, Auros IX is a large, untamed planet not far from the Maelstrom, a dangerous area of space similar to the infamous Eye of Terror. It is quite conceivable that other armies could get involved in the fighting.

What armies could get involved? Any army. The High Lords of Terra want Auros IX, with its rich mineral wealth, for the Imperium: they may deem it wise to send several armies of Space Marines, Imperial Guard, and Sisters of Battle to ensure victory. On Auros IX, they are sure to face hordes of native Orks as well as Orks from other systems (including Speed Freeks). The nearby Maelstrom is home to Chaos Space Marines and Dark Eldar: these villains need little incentive to strike. Tyranids have been sighted near the Maelstrom--perhaps they will descend to feed. The Eldar may play the mon-keigh against each other to weaken their hold on the system--or to prevent them from unwittingly releasing any Necrons that may lie buried beneath the rocky soil.

How these rules differ
The rules that follow are my suggestions for allowing multiple players to participate in the Auros IX campaign. The biggest change is the removal of what I call the volleyball system of determining missions. In volleyball, you can't score unless you're serving the ball; to get the ball, you have to break your opponent's serve. 

Similarly, in the two player rules for Auros IX, the winner of a game takes the initiative, decides what mission the next game will be (one, of course, that will, if he wins, allow him to claim an objective), and is the attacker in the next game. The defender tries to defeat the attacker to retake the initiative and force a game where he can claim one of his objectives. 

Attempting to carry over that system into a multi-player campaign would be tedious and needlessly complex--if not impossible. In my opinion, the beauty of the Auros IX campaign is in its simplicity and narrative elements. The parameters for including multiple players strive to maintain that simplicity while allowing the participants to create an engaging story.

Winning the campaign: The two-player version is a direct, head-to-head confrontation between two mighty forces: as my friend Pat and I are playing, it is his Ork horde, led by the wily Sho-T BigHed, ruler of the planet, versus my Fighting Tigers. The winner will conquer the other army with strength and skill.

The multiplayer version is more of a last-man-standing affair. Several factions contend on the surface of Auros IX: some are there to claim its wealth, some are there to prey on those who would try to take the planet. The army that eventually wins the campaign need not face all the others on the battlefield: there are plenty of foes to go around. The winning army will not so much conquer as they will survive. 

The two player version requires the winner to achieve five specific objectives and to replay games (if necessary) to achieve those objectives. The multi-player version requires each player to play five games and to keep a running total of the victory points they score in each game. The player with the highest victory point total after five games wins the campaign--and Auros IX!

Parameters for multiple players
Remember, this is a friendly competition, a means to fight some battles and string them along into a coherent narrative. I haven't playtested these suggestions, nor are they written in stone. Feel free to adjust these guidelines as you see fit. 

If a question comes up, use common sense to figure it out. For example, would Marines ever ally with Orks? Probably not, but maybe they would against an especially large Tyranid swarm that had both of their armies surrounded ("Dis li'l scrap ain't over, Cap'n High-n-Mighty. Soon as we get done squishin' dem bugeyes, us an' yer Marine boys are gonna pick up where we left off!").

Keep it friendly and be willing to compromise!

Space Marines and Orks: To preserve the flavor of the campaign, at least one player should use Space Marines and at least one should use Orks. Given the popularity of these armies, this shouldn't be a problem.

2000 point minimum: To reflect the large scale of the conflict, I recommend battles of at least 2000 points per player. Players are also encouraged to change their army lists (within the Force Organization guidelines) from battle to battle as they see fit. 

Number of Battles: Each player will play five games. 

Opponents: Players choose their opponents for each battle. Except for Marines and Orks (see below), each player is allowed to fight whomever they choose as many times as they choose (within the five-game limit of the campaign). Thus, it's perfectly acceptable for Don (Dark Eldar) to play three games against Charles (Chaos), one game against Tim (Tyranids), and one game against Mike (Marines). Or he could just play all five games against Tim (if both of them are willing).

Each Marine player must fight at least two battles against Orks, and vice versa (after all, the campaign is centered around Marines invading an Ork planet). If there is more than one Ork player, a Marine player need not, if he prefer, play each of them: it's perfectly acceptable for him to just play both required games against the same Ork opponent. 

Alliances/Internecine fighting: Within reason (and so long as point values are equal and all participants agree), players are free to ally their forces with other players'. It would perfectly acceptable, for example, for an Imperial Guard army (2000 points) and a Space Marine army (2000) to team up against a very large Ork horde (4000 points) or against a smaller Ork army (3000 points) and a Chaos Marine force (1000 points).

Conversely, it is also acceptable for players nominally "on the same side" (for example, forces of the Imperium) to battle each other for control of the planet. The High Lords of Terra want Auros IX and will reward whatever faction (Space Wolves, Dark Angels, Imperial Guard, Sisters of Battle, etc.) brings it to them. While the High Lords would certainly prefer that Imperial forces not fight each other, such is their desire for the planet's riches that they are willing to overlook the methods used to gain it….

Mission Objectives: At the start of each battle, before any units have been deployed, each player may, if they desire, choose an objective (from the list below) for their forces. If the player manages to achieve the objective, he gains the bonus victory points. No objective may be attempted more than once during the campaign (each player is on his honor about this) and if an objective is to be used, the other player must be told about it before any units have been deployed.

The objectives are:

Decapitation Triple victory points for each HQ unit killed/wiped out (Note that characters are not really "killed" but assumed to be so severely wounded that they are out of action for the rest of the game. They may return to the campaign in the next game).
Overrun +200 victory points for every undamaged vehicle or unit of infantry, bikes, or cavalry with more than half its original number of models in the opponent's deployment zone at the end of the game. 

+100 points for each damaged vehicle or unit with less than half its original models in the opponent's deployment zone.

Take and Hold Nominate an object, figure, vehicle, or terrain feature (the smaller, the better) and place it in the center of the table. At the end of the game, the player who controls the objective gains 200 victory points. If both players have chosen Take and Hold as their objective, then the player who has claimed the objective gains 300 victory points.

To control the objective, a player must have the closest unit to the objective at the end of the game. Immobilized vehicles or units of infantry, bikes, or cavalry  with more than 50% casualties cannot control the objective.

Take Prisoners Enemy prisoners are needed: perhaps for interrogation, perhaps as slave labor, perhaps for their equipment and supplies, perhaps for purposes so foul they cannot be named. Every figure defeated in close combat is worth 3 additional victory points (4 victory points each if the captors are Dark Eldar). 
Silence Enemy Guns +100 points for every enemy Heavy Support unit destroyed.

Mission Scenario for Multiple Players
The two player version of the Auros IX Campaign allows for many missions to be run; for simplicity, the multiplayer version uses one, described below. Each player will compete in five games using the mission below and will keep track of how many Victory Points they win in each game. The player with the most Victory Points after five games is the winner: their army has defeated or outlasted all competitors and has conquered Auros IX. 

Both sides pick forces from the Standard Force Organization chart, to an agreed points value (2000+ points recommended).

1 HQ
1 more HQ
2 Troops
4 more Troops
3 Elites
3 Fast Attack
3 Heavy Support

Set up the terrain using any mutually agreeable method.

Auros IX and all its mineral wealth will soon be yours—as soon as you eliminate those who would usurp your rightful claim. Engage the enemy and destroy them. Show no mercy.

Scenario Special Rules
Each game uses the Deep Strike, Infiltrators, Random Game Length, and Victory Points scenario special rules. If both players agree, other special rules (Night Fighting, etc.) may be added.

1. Both players roll a die; the winner gets to choose which of the long board edges will be his deployment zone. Units may be deployed up to 12" onto the board. The opponent gets the opposite board edge.

2. Both players roll a die; the loser deploys one of his units first. The other player then deploys one of his units. The players alternate deploying in this way until their entire armies are on the table. 

Deployment zones

3. No unit may be deployed within 24" of the enemy. The players must deploy their units in the following order: Heavy Support first, followed by Troops, Elites, HQ, and finally Fast Attack units.

4. If either side has any troops which can Infiltrate then they may deploy these units after all other units have been placed. They may be placed anywhere on the battlefield which is 18" or more from an enemy unit. If both sides have Infiltrators, roll a die: the winner may choose whether to deploy his Infiltrators before or after enemy Infiltrators.

5. Both players roll a die; the winner may choose whether to go first or second.

Mission Objective
Both armies are attempting to wipe out the other while minimizing their own losses. Players may announce a mission objective before any units are deployed; achieving the objective will result in bonus victory points. 


Game Length
The game lasts for a variable number of turns.

Line of Retreat
Troops which are forced to fall back will do so towards the long board edge of their deployment zone, using the normal Fall Back rules.

The Blood Deserts of Auros IX
Intro <> 2 Player Rules <> Multiplayer Rules <> Alternate Scenario <> Battle Summaries

Related Pages
Fighting Tigers Glossary and Pronunciation Guide

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© Copyright Patrick Eibel and Kenton Kilgore, January 2000


Fighting Tigers:
Codex <> Tactics <> Gallery <> Allies and Enemies <> Tales of the Tigers

Other Pages:
Main <> What's New <> Site Index <> The Tiger Roars <> Themed Army Ideas
Events and Battle Reports <> Campaigns <> Terrain <> FAQ <> Beyond the Jungle