Monday, 7 March 2011

VOR - The Maelstrom

Anyone remember VOR - The Maelstrom?

Prior to Starship Troopers is was the Wargame I played the most (outside of Work, I was working for GW at the time).

VOR was a science fiction wargame, set in the 22nd century - Earth had been sucked into a Black Hole - somehow surviving it found all sorts of weird races and environments in there. 

VOR was the Maelstrom's name - it was actually an intelligent entity. It was sort of a Bermuda Triangle/Sargasso Sea in space - leading to a pocket universe. Within this "space" were all sorts of wierd and wonderful races.

The Union
The North American Union is the unification of all North American nations, they possess advanced technology and superior tactics. The Union are the "norms" of the Game.

Resurgent communist Russian forces, with crude but powerful weapons and mutated animals. The Neo-Soviet Empire cares for the nation as a whole and not any one citizen. It employs chemical and radiation weapons at will. The "human wave" tactic is the most common strategy used.

The Growlers are primate-like monsters directed by the pack's collective packmind, strong and adaptable, and the main enemies of the Zykhee. With four main breeds.

The razorback breed inhabits areas of high metallic ore concentrations. Their spines and teeth are heavily imbedded with metal on a genetic level..

The bluefangs inhabit any lush jungle or forest they can find. As ambush hunters they will sit and wait for prey, but tend to graze their area as well, making them bloated by the sheer volume of food taken in.

These growlers have actually used heat to release the energy of their food rather than chemical reactions. They inhabit areas of volcanic activity and have the ability to spit lava.

The most intelligent of growlers, the Whitetusks are the best coordinated of all the breeds. Identified by their white fur and large tusks coming from their heads they make up the smallest of the growler breeds.

There are rules for mixed breed "tribes" and of course your own Growler breeds are possible using the Custom Force rules (more on the Custom Force rules later).

Vaguely humanoid aliens with advanced technology, powerful melee weapons and spiritual abilities. Alien Ninja/Jedi basically.

The Shard are a race of lifeforms who have transcended physical form and have become pure energy. Upon entering the Maelstrom they found the need to encase said energy/essence in crystalline forms. Vaguely humanoid in shape, the Shard have an extreme hatred for 'carbons' (carbon-based lifeforms), and stop at nothing to wipe them out. I really like the Shard, they remind me of the Vorlons from Babylon 5.

The Pharon are a dead race. Formerly mummified, similar to the mummies of Ancient Egypt the strange energies of the Maelstrom have reanimated them. They attack other races for their life-giving fluids and parts. The Pharon often reanimate their enemies to serve as slaves until such time as the slaves fall apart. AWESOME army, I had to wait a while for these to come out - then the game ended way before the really interesting stuff came out (such as the Slayer suits). I'm STILL working on my Pharons LoL!

The Mashers are very primitive creatures, yet they can 'mash' (meld) with technology. They are a race of scavengers, and bear a physical similarity to Neandertals. The Mashers didnt have an Army List - though there is now a Sneak Peek over at the official VOR 2.0 Forums. There are two Masher miniatures available over at Iron Wind Metals.

These solid creatures wear power armour. They are actually two creatures - a mindless host and an intelligent parasite, who enslave and conquer worlds. Again, no official Army list - there are only 3 different Miniatures available for the Golem (over at Iron Wind Metals) - a Prototype, a "Pounder", and a Slaver.

The Ceru are a race of blue, gnomish beings who were enslaved by the Golem, but broke free when the Golem's homeworld (where the Ceru happened to be at the time) got sucked into the Maelstrom. They specialize in vehicles and are constantly on the move. Nothing beyond some interesting ideas and artwork was ever done for the Ceru - its a shame, they are really interesting. Little Blue Bikers that they are.

Vor was published by FASA in 1999, but was discontinued when FASA closed its doors in 2001. You could USE ANY MINIATURES with it, because there were custom force rules built into the ruleset.

I have a REALLY diverse Collection - AE-WWII, Pulp City, Starship Troopers - but with a little effort, ALL is possible in Vor - The Maelstrom. I've played games where Mobile Infantry face off against Necron Raiders, and hoards of Rocket Men face of against Chaos Marines. 

THE ONLY real problem with VOR was within the custom force rules themselves - they math was a Little out.

The Force Structure, Unit Creation Rules, and other such options stay the same. Only the Points costs need to be amended.

This unfortunately, will mean the points costs being worked out (sometimes) as a fraction of a point (I’ve kept it as % to make it easier) with the final number being rounded off.

Cost to increase/decrease 1 point
MP (Move Points)
+/- 2.25 Points
CC (Close Combat)
+/- 0.55 Points
RC (Ranged Combat)
+/- 1.10 Points
POW (Power)
+/- ?? Points
BOD (Body)
+/- ?? Points
BRN (Brains)
+/- ?? Points
GUT (Guts)
+/- ?? Points
LIF (Life Force)
+/- ?? Points
AR (Armour Rating)
+/- ?? Points

Using the custom force builder in the book it comes to - 23 points for the Stats, 17 points for the Pitbul (and the MP's are wrong), & 12 Points for the Pug Pistol = 52 Points which is roughly half (well, divide by 1.86)

The Books and Miniatures are still available quite Cheaply, I suggest you check VOR out - you won't be dissapointed.

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