Space Crusade: Solo Rules

I love Space Crusade! As a child, it introduced me to the universe of Warhammer 40,000 and made me fall in love with the entire concept of “space marines versus alien monsters”. The only problem is, as I’ve got older, not a lot of people are interested in playing it. Indeed, the game itself has become rather obscure compared to the likes of Space Hulk or Hero Quest.

I decided a couple of years ago that it would be interesting to see if the game could be played solo. Unlike Hero Quest, there were no real “spoilers” at risk; in Hero Quest, the Evil Wizard player – as well as controlling all the monsters – must know all the quest details and only reveals them to the players as the quest progresses, while Space Crusade’s Alien Player only really controls the aliens and chooses what and where to deploy them. So, I set out to see if I could create an “artificial intelligence” version of the Alien Player which would govern everything a human one would need to do. This wouldn’t just make the game playable solo, but allow it to be played with three Marine Players versus the AI, or even entirely as a co-op game with the Marines working together instead of competing against each other. What follows is the result of my solo experiments…

 

SPACE CRUSADE SOLO RULES

In addition to the original game box contents, you will also need 2 six-sided dice, 2 twelve-sided dice (preferably different colours), and 1 four-sided die. All should be available at any game stores or in roleplaying sets.

 

BOARD SCANNING & BLIP PLACEMENT

Whenever a board is scanned, roll 2d6+4 and place this many Blips on that board.

When the last board section is scanned, all remaining Blips must be placed (do not roll).

Place each Blip by rolling 1d12 twice (or 2d12 of different colours) for each Blip. The first roll is for the “row” and the second is for the “column” of the board section (each board section is 12×12 squares). Square “1-1” is always the upper left most square as per the Mission layout diagram orientation.

If two Blips are to be placed in the same square, reroll or place one in an adjacent square if possible.

Blips may never be placed in front of a Docking Claw (airlock door) in a way that blocks Marines from exiting on their first turn.

Blips are selected and placed at random; do not look at them as they are placed.

Blips remain face down until a Player enters line of sight of them, then they are revealed.

 

BLIP MOVEMENT

Blips do not move if they are surrounded by unbroken walls and unopened doors.

Blips in corridors or with an open door between them and the Marines move 5 spaces towards the nearest Marine each turn.

 

ALIEN MOVEMENT & ATTACKING

On the Alien turn, roll 1D6 for each Alien on the board to determine movement:

Roll Result
1-3 Alien moves closer to nearest Marine.
4-5 Alien moves away from nearest Marine.
6 Alien stays where it is.

Aliens that have no Shooting dice (such as Genestealers) do not roll; they always move closer to the nearest Marine.

After moving, the Alien then attacks if possible. If adjacent to a Marine, they use Close Combat. If within line of sight but not adjacent, they use Ranged Combat, if possible. If they cannot attack, they do nothing else.

When an Alien fires at a Marine with a normal weapon (e.g. Bolter or Boltgun), they always shoot at the closest Marine within line of sight.

 

ALIEN ATTACK PRIORITY

Aliens always attack the nearest Marine when shooting, unless their weapon would mean this causes them to get caught in the blast (e.g. they are using a Missile Launcher); in such a case, they attack the next closest.

When Marines are the same distance away, Aliens attack heavy weapon Marines first, then bolter Marines, then Commanders.

If an Alien is carrying a heavy weapon that allows them to hit multiple Marines, they always make a shot that hits the highest number of Marines.

 

ALIEN REINFORCEMENTS

At the end of each Alien turn, determine if you should place any Reinforcements or not, and if so, what type, using one of the following two cases:

Case 1: There is at least one Blip or Alien model on any board at the end of the Alien turn.

  • Roll 2d6 on the table below:
Roll Result
2-5 None
6-8 1d6 Green
9-10 1d6 Blue
11 1d6 Black
12 1d6 Purple*

If you ever roll a type of Reinforcement that is omitted from the current Mission (e.g. “All Green” and a Black reinforcement is rolled), or if there are no remaining reinforcement tokens of the type specified, ignore the roll. Ignored rolls mean no Reinforcements that turn.

Case 2: There are no Blips or Alien models on the board at the end of the Alien turn.

  • Six random Reinforcements are placed.
  • Determine each reinforcement type by rolling 1d6 on the following table:
Roll Result
1-2 Green
3-4 Blue
5 Black
6 Purple*

If there are no remaining Reinforcements of the type rolled, or that type is omitted from the current Mission, shift the result “down” one (e.g. “Blue” becomes “Black”, “Purple” becomes “Green”, etc.).

 

ALIEN DICE RE-ROLLS

When the Alien player is permitted to re-roll a combat die for any reason, use the following guide to determine if they do so:

  1. First, any Red Die “0” result is re-rolled.
  2. Second, any White Die “0” result is re-rolled.
  3. Third, any Red Die “1” result is re-rolled (unless the “1” is enough to score a hit).

If none of the above apply, no re-roll is made.

 

ALIEN DREADNOUGHT WEAPONS

When an Alien Dreadnought is placed on the board, roll to 1d6 determine what weapons it is armed with, according to its type.

Dreadnought Weapon Table (Base Set):

Roll Result
1-2 Assault Cannon
3-4 Missile Launcher
5-6 Plasma Gun

Dreadnought Weapon Table (Mission Dreadnought):

Roll Result
1 Assault Cannon
2 Missile Launcher
3 Plasma Gun
4 Las-Cannon
5 Fusion Gun
6 Conversion Beamer

Roll for each “hardpoint” on the Dreadnought model being placed; i.e. roll twice for a two-weapon model Dreadnought, and roll four times for a four-weapon model Dreadnought.

If a heavy weapon rolled is already in use, shift the roll result “down” one (e.g. 2 becomes 3, 6 becomes 1, etc).

 

ALIEN DREADNOUGHT LIFE POINTS

Alien Dreadnoughts that lose a Life Point lose their heavy weapons by rolling 1D4 on the table below, where “left” and “right” refers to the Dreadnought’s left and right sides when pointed away from you.

Dreadnought Hit Table (2-Weapon Model):

Roll Result
1-2 Remove left weapon
3-4 Remove right weapon

Dreadnought Hit Table (4-Weapon Model):

Roll Result
1 Remove top left weapon
2 Remove bottom left weapon
3 Remove top right weapon
4 Remove bottom right weapon

If a weapon is already removed, shift the roll result “up” one (e.g. 2 becomes 1, 1 becomes 4, etc).

 

MARINE WEAPON MALFUNCTIONS

When an Event card or Mission text allows the Alien player to pick a Marine with a Heavy Weapon who is “out of ammo” or suffers a “malfunction”, roll 1d12 to determine which Marine’s weapon is affected.

Weapon Malfunction Table (Base Set):

Roll Result
1-3 Assault Cannon
4-6 Missile Launcher
7-9 Plasma Gun
10-12 Combi-Weapon (Commander)

Weapon Malfunction Table (Mission Dreadnaught):

Roll Result
1 Assault Cannon
2 Missile Launcher
3 Plasma Gun
4-5 Las-Cannon
6-7 Fusion Gun
8-9 Conversion Beamer
10-11 Tarantula
12 Combi-Weapon (Commander)

Weapon Malfunction Table (All Weapons):

Roll Result
1 Assault Cannon
2 Missile Launcher
3 Plasma Gun
4 Las-Cannon
5 Fusion Gun
6 Conversion Beamer
7 Tarantula
8 Combi-Weapon (Commander)
9 Flamer
10 Melta-Gun
11 Heavy Bolter
12 Heavy Flamer

Any Marine carrying the rolled weapon type must replace that weapon with a Bolter. If no Marines are carrying the Weapon Type rolled, re-roll.

 

OPTIONAL: ALIEN CHAOS MARINE HEAVY WEAPONS

When a Chaos Heavy Weapon Marine is placed on the board, roll to 1d6 determine which heavy weapon it is armed with.

Chaos Marine Heavy Weapon Table:

Roll Result
1-2 Assault Cannon
3-4 Missile Launcher
5-6 Plasma Gun

 

OPTIONAL: ALIEN CHAOS MARINE COMMANDER WEAPONS

When a Chaos Marine Commander is placed on the board, roll to 1d6 determine what weapons it is armed with.

Chaos Marine Commander Weapon Table:

Roll Result
1-2 Bolt Pistol & Power Axe
3-4 Heavy Bolter
5-6 Power Fist & Power Sword

 

*Note: Any references to a “Purple” Reinforcement type are for my own custom-made (Genestealer/Tyranid) blips and reinforcement tokens. Ignore these if you are using the default blips and reinforcements.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s