Thursday 27 August 2015

Interplanetary News and Rumours

Yes, this is a third post about the Interplanetary event. This may seem like a lot, but it was an incredibly packed weekend so there might even be a fourth showcasing the new HQ building, but I'm awaiting go-ahead to publish some of the pictures.

I've held off doing a post about the seminar that was held on the Saturday evening because I assumed (hoped) that someone had snapped better pictures of it all than I had, or at least had paid more attention with their notes! As that seems not to be the case, I'll present the seminar as I recall it.

Apologies for the potato-quality pictures. The projection screen was set right at the back of the stage and my poor old camera was struggling to take passable images with that much zoom. I didn't even have a tripod to help stabilise.

Also, sorry if some of this is commonly known from Gencon or other seminars. I haven't kept much up to date so there may be repeated info.

Showing how the 3d models are built around a human 'core' to ensure realistic proportions.
First up, an answer to a long-outstanding rules query. Just what on Paradiso is an Aerocam?

The answer is that it counts, for all intents and purposes, as a 360 Visor. Expect additional functionality to be added with the re-release of campaign/Spec Ops rules which may be in Human Sphere N3 (HSN3). This was confirmed in a Q&A session with Gutier so is about as official as it gets for now.

Bashi Bazouks concept art.

Right, so first up we have the Bashi Bazouk redesign. No new weapon options here, although I had forgotten that a Combi Rifle was even available for them.

Holoprojector rules are apparently significantly overhauled in HSN3 so I can imagine this unit showing up more often in the future depending on exactly what happens.

Khwarijs concept art.

We were also showed the Khwarijs redesign. It is confirmed that they will be linkable with Tarik Mansuri in the Caliphate sectorial.

They have a Heavy Rocket Launcher on their concept art, which is definitely new. I'm excited for our linkable, super-jumping HRL super soldiers with Doctor Plus support!

The Caliphate sectorial will also contain more units under the theme of 'super soldiers', Expect lots of genetic engineering and the like.

Avicena concept art.

Avicena render.

Avicena render.

I'm pretty sure this one is common knowledge by now, but we were shown the redesign for Avicenna. I think the model looks awesome but I'm not looking forward to pinning the hair into place.

Dactly Doctor concept art.

Dactyl Doctor render.

Steel Phalanx received yet more releases, this time in the form of the Dactyl Doctor. I'm actually quite pleased with this model as a I think the Engineer looks too similar to the Chandra in terms of pose, equipment and stature. The Doctor looks sufficiently different from anything else in the faction.

Achilles Hoplite Armour concept art.

Yeah, this is the one that got me excited. Achilles in Hoplite armour. We were given a few minutes to ask questions about his profile, but not much extra info was spoiled.
  • He will be ARM6.
  • He will be able to form Fireteams.
  • He will (probably) not have ODD.
  • He will not be armed with a Heavy Shotgun.
  • He will not be replacing the previous Achilles. Both will be in faction just like Joan or Sun Tze.
Bostria was a little coy about the linking thing, originally acting like he wasn't sure and then nodding vigorously with a great big grin.  Make of that what you will. 

Of course, this raises the question of who he can form Fireteams with. The most obvious suggestion is that Steel Phalanx will get a new 'Hoplite' unit to go with their latest hero. My hopes are certainly high for another frontline-combat fireteam.

Also, I have a strong suspicion that there will be Nanoscreens involved somewhere. This isn't based on any rumours, just on it being such a perfect fit thematically!

Kosuil Assault Pioneers concept art.

Kosuil Assault Pioneers render.

The new Tohaa Kosuil Assault Pioneers with K1 Combi Rifle and Mines will be a welcome addition to the Tohaa forces, if for no other reason than it helps them complete Lifeblood! They will be able to form Fireteams as well.

While we're on the subject of Tohaa, there will be an alternative Armand next year with different arms and possibly a different head.

Kerail Preceptors concept art.

Kerail Preceptors are another new weapon and are armed with the (presumably fearsome) Pulzar weapon. No word on what this weapon does or whether these guys can be in triads or not though.

They are however required in order to field Symbiobugs. This is in the same way that Hackers are required in order to field Remotes.

Mutan Symbiobugs concept art.

Surda Symbiobugs concept art.

The Tohaa battlecats, previously rumoured to be S2 are now supposedly being a whopping S5 - that's Antipode-sized!

They are able to activate independently of the Kerail on the battlefield in the same way as most Remotes can in normal factions. Bostria was being a little bit coy about this though so it might change in time for release.

Not much to say here other than Croc Men still exist, they are being redesigned and they are part of Varuna.

Note the turquoise trim which is indicative of the Varuna sectorial. This sectorial will also include Fusiliers, Kamau and a semi-intelligent alien unit as well which are considered to be native to Varuna.

Uhlan concept art.

Tikbalangs concept art.

Yeah, now we're getting to some big stuff. TAGs always generate excitement and the long awaited Stingray series is no exception. As expected these are going to be similar in size to Geckos (S6) and it was suggested that they might be released in a double-pack (one Tikbalang and one Uhlan) in the same way that Geckos are.

Oh yeah, and Toni Macayana is going the way of the Caskuda and her profile will cease to exist. No news apart from that, but I wouldn't be surprised if the Tikbalangs got a bit of an overhaul as part of this change. Currently they were seen as unusable due to being overshadowed by Toni, but I'm curious to see what people will make of them going forwards.

This is likely to divide the community somewhat, but seems an obvious decision based on the fact that Toni basically made the Tikbalangs obsolete and she didn't have a model anyway.

Seraph render.

Yeah, more PanO TAG goodness. The Seraph looks incredibly badass and is going to be pretty large. It's officially been divorced from the Stingray series and is going to weigh in at a sizable Silhouette 7.

It's also been confirmed that the 'wings' do not imply any in-game functionality. Definitely no Airborne Deployment here and probably no Super Jump or similar either.

It will be available in a box with its Auxbot later this year. It will not be getting the two-TAG-in-a-box treatment.

Current and future Fireteam icons.

Probably not new to many of you, but an exciting bit of confirmation for me at least. There will be a new 'Duo' Fireteam skill in HSN3. I have no idea what the effects of Fireteaming two models would be - possibly the order savings alone could be enough - and no knowledge of which factions it'll be available to either.

You may also notice the conspicuous absence of anything in the bottom left slot. Apparently there was another Fireteam type in the works but it isn't ready to announce at the moment. In fact it might never be released depending on how testing goes, but it's intriguing to think what it might have been. Six man fireteams perhaps?

EVO Hackers.

Again, not new to many of you, but there were changes to EVO  announced. They will now be Hackers outright rather than just Repeaters with some funky rules. Presumably they will be self-fulfilling the obligation to take a Hacker in order to use Remotes.

The programs they have available are:

  • Shield 1- U Turn
  • Shield 1 - Exorcism
  • Shield 2 - Breakwater
  • Gadget 1 - Fairy Dust
  • Gadget 1 - Coordinated Jump
  • Gadget 1 - Lockpicker
  • Gadget 2 - Assisted Fire
  • Gadget 2 - Enhanced Reactions
  • Upgrade - Caleidoscope (sic)
  • Upgrade - Overclock
  • Upgrade - Reboot
  • Upgrade - Teampro

Killer Hacking Devices

More Hacking Device goodness. This time showcasing the new Killer Hacking Device, a variant specifically designed to cause damage to other hackers. I believe Ninjas and Interventors were mentioned by name as wielding them and that if a unit was given a Killer Hacking Device then it would be in addition to any profiles they have currently.

Importantly, these are going to be cheap and will count as Specialists.

  • Sword 2 - Trinity
  • Sword 2 - Redrum (apparently none of the Spanish play-testers understood this reference!)
  • Sword 2 - Skullbuster
  • Upgrade - Cybermask
  • Upgrade (CA) - Maestro
As  you can see from the list, Combined Army will be getting EVO Hackers for the first time!  

Yeah, new faction hype!

Seodron Batroids will be Antipode sized (S5), no confirmation whether they will be TAGs or REMs though. My money is on a bulky 2 STR Remote.

The Red Fury weapon is a weapon a bit like a Spitfire. Expect mid-range and high Burst.

Overdron Batroids will be full on TAG sized (S7) if my notes aren't lying and a Plasma Sniper Rifle seems like a sufficiently destructive weapon!

There were a few other titbits of information to come out too:
  • Human Sphere N3 is expected to arrive late this year but will not be ITS legal until the 2016 season. The 2015 season will stick with the current rules.
  • Halqa, Kamau, MRRF and Shasvastii are not going to be updated in HSN3 but will be included in Acheron Falls. They will remain legal in all respects until that book arrives.
  • More army packs are likely on the way - potentially another release for Gencon next year.
  • Hector is rumoured to finally be arriving in Steel Phalanx in HSN3.
  • The new Maghariba Guard is also supposedly going to be showing up next year. Expect a suitable influx of Haqq players when it does!
  • There will be no significant overhaul to the ITS ranking system for the 2016 season. Don't expect anything approaching Elo to arrive in the foreseeable future.
  • The website will have a proper unit catalogue set up which will be filterable by a variety of options e.g. searching for PanO specialists. The flavour text which went AWOL as part of the website changes will also be making a comeback.

Well, that's all my notes on the seminar. Have at it rumour-hunters!


  1. Thank you!!!

    Looking forward HSN3 and all SP goodness it advances... Hoplites, Achilles v2, Hector, Dactyls linkables?

    1. It's going to be a good year or so for Steel Phalanx players! I know I'm looking forward to the sectorial being shaken up a bit.