Fantastic tabletop Battle of Hoth


Cool. I think many of those is from the old WotC Minis game.

Hoth is my favorite fantasy battle field from when I was a kid. I prayed to God to get 5 feet of snow so I could make snow trench.

Looking forward to playing Battlefront when it comes out.

Should everything be crowded into such a small space?

Aside from the cost and storage issues, that’s one thing that bugs me about miniatures. I think to do that properly you’d need 5mm-6mm scale.


Huh, I didn’t know that the four-footed guys were supposed to be so much larger in scale than the biped things.

True fact: when I saw TESB in the theater, I laughed when I saw the biped vehicle; I thought it was a visual gag meaning that one of the four-footers had its gotten its rear half blown off, and here was its front half stumbling around. (I was like seven or something.)

How do you game this? Militarily speaking, the ground campaign of the Defense of Hoth was a total failure. They didn’t slow down the fall of the base by a single second.

What about something like CastAR and have the “workspace” modelled in augmented reality, with the right proportions and zoomable?

Well, they blew up a few AT-ATs, which presumably had a squad or two of Snowtroopers (I refuse to go to Wookieepedia, where someone has almost certainly figured out the numbers). If there were more ground troops, I suppose they could have gotten to the Falcon before it was able to evacuate…

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When I played a Assault on Hoth, the Rebels “win” by evacuating the transports.

You can’t defeat the invasion force. You can only escape.


What I’ve never understood (aside from the obvious ‘narrative causality’ reasons) is why there was a ground campaign at all.

Yes, the rebels have a shield that prevents orbital bombardment; but (as their use of low altitude aircraft and the empire’s use of very, very, tall armored vehicles suggests) the shield clearly doesn’t extend all the way to the ground.

TIE fighters and bombers are supposed to be atmosphere capable(if not necessarily brilliant at it), and Star Destroyers carry 72 (fighter/bomber ratio varies) each. Given the almost nonexistent close anti-air capabilities of the rebel base, the imperial strike craft should have been able to destroy the reactor, bomb and strafe the transports on the ground, as well as any other ground targets that presented themselves, and engage the fleeing transports before they got far enough away from the planet to make a hyperspace jump(since, unlike the capital ships, they are far too small to be targeted by the ground based ion cannon).

The imperial ground forces did roll over the rebel base easily enough, as was to be expected; but the empire more or less entirely failed to prevent the escape of the relevant rebels (sucks to be the redshirts who weren’t princess-saving enough to get to be fighter jocks; but nobody ever said the rebellion was about a more egalitarian galaxy…); which is pretty pathetic in light of the resources at their disposal. A strike craft deployment(or even a slightly more aggressive combined-arms operation using shuttles to drop troops directly onto the rebel loading areas) could have ensured a near-total wipeout. Rebel strike craft were hyperdrive capable, so a few pilots might have made it out, if they decided to run; but destruction of all the transports and the deaths of all core personnel either in the transports or on the surface? Definitely.

From the perspective of being a good movie the ground attack was quite sensible; but Lord Vader should be deeply, deeply, ashamed of himself for such a tactical blunder.

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It’s unclear what forces the rebels had. Obviously, they had prepared the base to hold out, with the snowspeeders and the heavy weapons, but they were surprised by the strength of the Imperial fleet. But how could they be surprised by that, since they know the Empire has the resources for entire death stars?

Anyway, I don’t think it would have been better Imperial strategy to send in the TIEs. The fighters and interceptors were designed for space combat. The bombers were probably capable of ground attack, but if they have to manuever through one of a few ground-level gaps, they will be vulnerable to rebel cannons and could be outfought by the snowspeeders.


But nothing the Rebels did on the ground slowed the attacking Imperials. They came right through at AT-AT walking pace. If the Rebels has zero speeders and zero ground troops and zero heavy lightshow generators and zero poorly constructed shallow trenches, they would have evacuated exact the same number of transports.

Yeah, the entire Star Wars universe doesn’t make sense if you think about it. It’s a world with laser guns, but the most powerful personal weapon is a sword. Shield block lasers, but not matter, and yet no one mounts a Gatling gun…err heavy repeating slug thrower?.. to either shoot the shield generators or just shoot the target. Even the simplest robots are sentient, and yet $0.50 voice chips are comparatively rare.

Even General Veers’s line, doesn’t make sense, “the shield will be down in moments. You may start your landing.” And yet he landed, why couldn’t everyone just land where he did?

I saw ESB in the theaters too. People laughed at the AT-ST in my theater too. I didn’t understand why. In face, i never did understand until just now.

Wasn’t it all Ozzel’s fault?

Vader wanted to sneak into the system slowly and undetected, so the shield wouldn’t be up and they could have bombarded from space?

The rebels are alerted to our presence. Admiral Ozzel came out of lightspeed too close to the system. Prepare your troops for a surface attack.

Yeah, Lucas’ knowledge of military technology and tactics came from a few movies and nothing else. This lack of knowledge means even if he saw a decent movie he didn’t really get it. For example, the Hoth scene has the trappings of a WWI attack, but it didn’t have wire (or the space equivalent), defense in depth, reinforcement, counterattack, combined arms, and other vital concepts.

I guess Vader wanted to personally capture Leia for some reason and not just nuke it all once the shield was down. Maybe everyone did land where he landed - we don’t know that the troops invading the base came from the walkers. It’s kind of fuzzy because Star Wars makes a habit of following big characters and not showing us the battle (who won the Battle of Coruscant in Revenge of the Sith? No one in the movie cares at all about losses or retreats or anything tactical or strategic - just the status of the generals.) I get that what most movie viewers want, but it means there isn’t any substance to hang a game on and now we are back to the original theme of the conversation.

It could be fun to reimagine Star Wars as a slightly different series, more realistic, with actually realistic battles and tactics. (The outcomes can be kept the same, e.g. by manipulating available intel or actual battlefield forces or just plain luck.)


Yeah, but Ozzel was convinced that that was the tactic of surprise. Shouldn’t knowing that be trivial? I don’t understand the concept of the mistake.

It could be even more than that - with cheap and plentiful AI’s, battles could be weird and wonderful. Something beyond our understanding.

But Lucas was making films for people who grew up on Dambusters and 633 Squadron and so he just made that with lasers.



Also, Star Wars fan film, “I.M.P.S. The Relentless”: