Yet another old game draft I wrote at some point, resurrected from beyond the digital grave. Like all the best board games, this one has never been played.INVASION OF THE STAR MONKEYS
“They came from beyond space — with cruelty beyond measure!”
The Trucklip All-Mind had been monitoring the planet since the Trinity atomic blast; its automated scout craft waiting patiently for an ambassador from the sentient and atom-wielding citizens of earth.
When the chimpanzee Enos blasted off atop an Atlas 5 rocket in 1961, no one could have imagined the ultimate outcome. The Trucklip scout touched the chimp’s mind and discovered a hideous nightmare of torture, fear, and slavery. Somehow Enos had escaped, but after two short orbits he fell back to earth — into the cruel hands of his oppressors.
The scout dutifully reported what it had found in the mind of Enos. It wasn’t the first time a peaceful race of starry-eyed technocrats had been enslaved by ignorant brutes, not by a long shot. The Trucklip All-Mind was in agreement — Enos and his brethren had harnessed the atom and were reaching for the stars. They were pleading for help, and the Trucklip would provide it.
From the scout’s subtle sensors, they had Enos’ complete genetic code. Suitably modified, augmented, and trained clones were produced. The Star Monkeys were born.
In 2119, the first flotilla of Chimpstars appeared beyond the Oort cloud. Earth’s pitiful defenses were no match for the Star Monkeys, whose sophisticaed technology was a gift of the unthinkably brilliant Trucklip. They moved slowly but methodically, broadcasting their intention to eradicate the human slavemasters wherever they might be found. The Chimpstar armada set its ultimate sights on earth, and the final liberation of the monkeys.
Name Cost Dice User Notes
Scout 1 1 Human Double movement
Fighter Wing 1 +1 Human No jump, adds die after attack
Carrier 1 1 Human Carries fighters
Cruiser 2 2 Human
Dreadnaught 3 3 Human
Battleglobe 4 4 Human
Trucklip Probe2 1 Monkey Can nova bomb planets
Pinwheel 2 3 Monkey
Chimpstar 3 4 Monkey
Humans have an eclectic range of vessels, but they are individually more expensive. Star Monkeys are limited in variety, but what they have is effective and cheap.
Scouts are fast but pitifully weak. They can be used to hold resource-bearing planets and moons, and to harry the Star Monkey fleets. They can also be sacrificed to give Human forces a tactical advantage in combat.
Carriers exist simply to move fighters around. Each can hold one or two Fighter units. If forced to fight, Carriers are as weak as scouts. Protect your carriers!
Fighters cannot be individually engaged. They can be used to add a die to any attack in their zone, after the dice for that attack have been rolled. This can be incredibly valuable, but only one Fighter wing can engage an enemy at a time. If Fighters have no carrier to return to in any zone except earth, they are destroyed.
Cruisers and Dreadnaughts are the primary combat ships of the Human navy. They are expensive and undergunned in comparison to Star Monkey units.
Battleglobes are the best war machines humanity can muster — equal to the Chimpstar but slightly more expensive.
STAR MONKEY UNITS
Trucklip Probes are similar to Human scouts, although not as fast. Their primary purpose is to nova bomb settlements to deprive Humans of resources. At the end of any turn in which a Trucklip Probe is in a planetary zone unopposed, it may nova bomb the resource and remove it from play permanently.
Pinwheels are efficient combat ships, as potent as a Human dreadnaught but as cheap as a Cruiser.
Chimpstars are the ships of the line, the most terrible and awe-inspiring vessels in the invasion armada. They are an equal to Human battleglobes but slightly cheaper.
Space zones have no resource value to the Human player, but some Planetary zones do:
Planetary Zone Value
STARTING THE GAME
Arrange the four pieces of the board randomly, with the sun in the center.
The Human player decides on the point total of his initial forces. Whatever number he chooses, the Star Monkey player has three times as many points to spend. For a shorter game that favors the Humans, choose a low point total. For a longer, more strategic game that favors the Star Monkeys, pick a high point total. A good, balanced point total is 20 for the Humans.
The Human player may place his units in any combination in any Planetary zones. Fighters, unless based on Terra, must be accompanied by a Carrier. The Star Monkey player places his units in any combination in zones at the edge of the map.
At the beginning of each turn, the Human player collects a number of points equal to the point values of all the Planetary zones he controls (13 at the start of hostilities). These can be used to buy new units, which start in the Terra planetary zone. The Human player recieves a planetary zone’s point or points if it has not been nova bombed and a Human unit was the last to visit the zone. Thus, the Human player will receive no points for a zone that the Star Monkeys pass through until one of his units visits.
Any number of units may occupy a single zone, and any or all units can be moved during a turn. The Star Monkey player moves Chimpstars first. When all Chimpstars have moved, the Human player moves any Battleglobes. Then the Star Monkey player moves the rest of his units (Trucklip Probes and Pinwheels), and finally, the Human player moves the rest of his units.
Enemy units cannot end a turn in the same zone. After all movement has been completed, warships will fight until all the forces from one side or the other retreat or are eliminated.
The attacker (the player who first moved a unit into a zone already occupied by an opposing unit) chooses a ship for the initial battle. The defender may choose any ship in the zone to fight it. Line these two up and set them aside. The defender now chooses a unit and the attacker matches it. Continue back and forth until every unit is matched (If the fight is uneven, there will be extras on one side).
In each match-up, roll the number of dice indicated by the attack score of the vessel. The highest roll wins (unless fighters are involved) and the low rolling vessel is destroyed. On a tie, both vessels are destroyed.
At the end of every round, before new match-ups aremade, any vessel can retreat one zone in the direction of the nearest friendly units, or in the direction from which it entered the zone. This movement does not count against it, it is effectively free.
EXAMPLE OF COMBAT
Round one: 2 Pinwheels and a Chimpstar move into a zone containing a Scout, Carrier, Dreadnaught, Fighter Wing, and Battleglobe.
The attacker offers his Chimpstar, and the defender matches it with his Scout (a sacrifice that frees up his Battleglobe)
The defender offers his Dreadnaught, which is matched with a Pinwheel (an even fight).
The attacker offers his other Pinwheel, which is paired with the Battleglobe (defender’s advantage). Rolls are in parentheses:
Chimpstar (10) , Scout (6) = Scout destroyed.
Pinwheel (7), Dreadnaught (7) = Both ordinarily destroyed, but Human player uses his Fighter, which rolls a 1, making the total 8. Pinwheel destroyed.
Pinwheel (15), Battleglobe (16) = Pinwheel destroyed.
Round two: Star Monkey player has a single Chimpstar left and can either retreat or offer it up for attack. He chooses to attack, and it is matched with the Battleglobe and Fighter.
Chimpstar (16), Battleglobe and Fighter (11+3) = Battleglobe destroyed.
Round three: Carrier and Fighter retreat. Chimpstar attacks Dreadnaught.
Chimpstar (19), Dreadnaught (6) = Dreadnaught destroyed.
Star Monkeys win the zone but lose two Pinwheels in the process.
STAR MONKEY STRATEGY
The Human player can replace lost units, a luxury not available to the you. It is therefore crucial for the Star Monkeys to occupy and, preferably, nova bomb Human outposts rapidly. Nova bombing frees up ships that would have to guard the zone against a Human reoccupation. Since you can win without occupying Terra, it is possible to ignore it entirely. But it is a tempting target, because occupying it automatically ends the game. Obviously, it will be well defended — and if you retreat, new units will spring up to replace the ones you destroyed.
Several stragies are open to the Human player. Since the Star Monkeys have no reinforcements, a war of attrition will usually end in your favor — but this will take careful planning, since Terra begins outnumbered three to one. While it is probably impossible to defend all your resource-rich planetary zones, you may be able to use the speed of your Scouts to steal some back if they are left ungarrisoned. Hitting enemy Trucklip Probes early in the game may save your precious resources from getting nova bombed.
The Star Monkeys win if they acquire at least seven points by physically occupying or nova bombing Planetary zones. They automatically win if they take Terra.
The Humans win if they destroy the Star Monkey armada, or if the Star Monkey player concedes defeat.