ArcMissions = Fun, frustrating, challenging, quirky, memorable…
Having played more than 90 battles across more than 15 Arc40K’s I’d suggest that all these words describe what it’s like at times to play an ArcMission.
Thankfully fun is by far the most common feeling. When the dust settles and the scores are tallied, the mission can often be the factor that helps make the time spent playing immensely better for you and your opponent.
At an Arc40k weekend don’t expect to come and play the latest centrally designed, out of the book, dare I say vanilla, mission. No! Arc40k has a rich tradition of being outside the box, putting a twist in the tail, weaving humor and sometimes quirky game rules into almost every battle.
In some cases the Objectives create their own narrative. So even though everyone is playing match play games. Some of the battles between some of the participants become amazing stories of heroic actions and last ditch stands that create the victory. Many Arc40k veterans have war stories they can recount from past game in previous events.
Across the years Arc40k has created a legacy of challenging games. I’ve a certificate for Mission Design back in 2008… So I get that it’s not easy to create something that will engage and challenge all the players at an event to battle hard and have fun playing each other and the mission.
But there are great memories to be earned thanks to the design of the objectives for games played at Arc40k.
It’s easy to recall Missions like BioWeapon - where you have to transport explodable bombs across the open expanse of no man’s land. Protecting the objective every step of the way in the hope of safely entering your opponents deployment zone. Detonating them in time to score some points. Meanwhile you’re trying to stop and hopefully blow up those of your opponent. It’s a crazy challenging mission.
Or Xfiles* where a Primary Objective is secretly handed to each player in an envelope before the game begins… It’s not until the end of the game that each player reveals to their opponent which of the 5 potential objectives they were actually playing! Fakes and feints, misdirection and secret agendas are all part of the strategy of play. It increases the challenge and fun to make your opponent really think hard about which Objective you are actually trying to achieve.
Then there’s Pitch Black*. OMG it was a blessing and a curse! As the sun starts to set from turn 2 cutting out visibility and causing havoc as it slowly crept across the table, one quarter at a time. Units not in vehicles or in cover were assaulted by the night itself. Yet the battle raged on in what remained of the bright other parts of the table top. It’s definitely a classic Arc40k mission.
There’s too many great missions played across so many great Arc40k weekends to talk about here - in fact there’s 144 in total, that were played across 8,154 games, and completed over the course of 22 events.
But I’m sure those who played will remember the likes of POW, Red Vs Blue, Killing in the Name of, Meat Grinder, and many others.
However, probably the signature mission, first unleashed upon the event participants during the time of darkness when records no longer exist, to find itself reimagined, as well as replayed and copied many times by other events seeking to imitate what is the most memorable ArcMission of all time - ThunderHawk Down.
This mission concluded a number of epic Arc40k weekends. If you haven’t heard about Thunderhawk Down it’s a mission where the objective both players will be fighting over starts off the board. It then randomly arrives - sometimes not until the last turns, to come down burning a path across the table.
It’s total devastation as those trying to anticipate the drop site can be bombarded by falling debris and smashed to pieces if they stand upon the ultimate crash site.
Oh and the downed Thunderhawk instantly becomes the end game objective to take and hold.
Suffice to say that many a memory was forged for a load of early event attendees who were privileged to play this crazy, mad, enjoyably fun, mission.
Many a Long Fanged veteran of Arc40k can reminisce - I was there the day we played ThunderHawk Down for the first time… were where you?
“In true Arc40k tradition missions are revealed at the event. Each mission has a different Primary objective and Secondary objective.
All players then choose 2 secondary objectives from the Grand Tournament mission book or their Codex. The player with the most Victory Points at the end of the game is the winner.”
What missions will be unleashed on the players for 2023? There’s a lot to be decided before the event. So there will be a lot more to do before missions are looked at by the team.
But if you want a taste of what may be in store then check out our Results pages - you’ll need to sign up (it’s free) to access this part of the site - there’s a collection of missions from across the years. Download the PDFs and try them for yourself.
*Our records show that Xfile and Pitch Black were first played in 2006