Apologies for the length of this post, but just too much awesomeness to be short! Well, another epic BattleTech fight for the history books! Two actually! We had a full compliment of MechWarriors - 16 players split between two tables with two Steiner and two Marik Lances! The scenario was a rescue/abduction mission during the height of the 4th Succession War. Takashi Kurita had demanded that Janos Marik open up another front to take some of the pressure off his beleaguered Draconis Combine. What he got was Operation Dagger. Intended to destroy isolated Steiner units and cut off the Lyran Commonwealth’s corridor to Terra, the Free Worlds League sent strike forces over the border to attack vulnerable targets. One of those was the planet Wyatt. The Lyrans however, were tipped off about the attack and were able to effect a retreat from the system before the Marik forces could trap them. In the evacuation, however, the last to attempt departure was the rulers of Wyatt, Baron Roark and his family. By the time their Fortress class dropship Divine Right boosted for space the 5th Regulan Hussars had already made planetfall. The dropship was intercepted by Marik aerospace assets and forced down, crashlanding in the badlands. A distress call was immediately sent out to the 11th Lyran Guards, who were still in system and diverted a Lance to rescue the noble family. However, Marik forces were also on the way, with a 5th Regulan Hussars Lance eager to capture the Baron. Both sides arrived at the downed Fortress at about the same time. The Steiner and Marik BattleMech Lances disembarked from their dropships, each with armored personnel carriers to transport the noble family, and raced across the badlands to the Divine Right, both units seeking to win for their Successor House the political advantage that custody of the legitimate Wyatt ruling family would bring. The battles on the two tables were amazing! On Table A Marik fielded an Orion, Shadow Hawk, Hatchetman (captured) and a Spider. Steiner had a Stalker, Thunderbolt, Assassin and Wasp. From the get-go LRM pot shots were taken by both sides and the lighter 'Mechs and APCs raced to the downed dropship while the mediums and heavies engaged each other along the way. The Stalker and Orion fought a devastating stand and deliver battle that left the Stalker in scattered tiny bits (from a opportunity shot fired by the SHD-2H that hit LRM ammo) and the Orion on it side with a cored engine. The Thunderbolt ended the uneven battle with the Shadow Hawk with a karmic ammo hit of its own, destroying the 'Hawk. The Hatchetman, Assassin, Spider and Wasp dueled around the dropship wreck, with the APCs from both sides trying valiantly, but futilely, to take into custody the Baron and his family and get away. The Hatchman took hit after hit but remained in the fight, but never managed to land a blow with its deadly hatchet. At about 12:30AM we called the game, assessing victory to be Steiner's as the Thunderbolt moved to enter the fray with the lighter 'Mechs! On Table B we had the honor of having Loren L. Coleman of Catalyst Game Labs as a player! Here the Marik BattleMechs were an Awesome, Marauder, Enforcer and Stinger and the Steiner Lance a Zeus, Warhammer, Centurion and Commando. The battle played out similar to what occurred at Table A, with the lighter 'Mechs and APCs converging on the Fortress and the Awesome and Zeus facing off. In this duel the Awesome took a hit to the sensors, the gyro and then was felled, giving Steiner again the victory. In the end, everyone had a great time and it was any side's win until the end. Very grateful thanks goes out to Iron Wind Metals for the incredibly generous and AMAZING prizes that were given to all the talented MechWarriors who fought! See ya all next year!