GTM #221 - Tripods & Triplanes: Wings of Glory meets the War of the Worlds
by Ares games



March, 1918. The Great Powers are exhausted by years of war But, after a meteor shower hits the woods of Alsace, the Great War is going to turn into a WAR OF THE WORLDS. At the crack of dawn, three gigantic fighting-machines of shining metal appear out of the trees striding on three legs and start burning villages and houses with beams of lethal heat-rays, clouds of pestilential black smoke trailing behind them.

A monstrous invasion from another world threatens mankind… Within a few hours, a truce is hurriedly signed between the warring nations and, against the advancing Martian tripods, the most modern war machines of Earth are dispatched: airplanes, manned by the most gallant and skilled warriors of the invaded planet!

It’s time to take off with Wings of Glory – Tripods & Triplanes, a new setting for Wings of Glory which adds a new twist to the best-selling aerial combat tabletop game. The WW1 historical setting is turned upside down by the crossover with H.G. Wells' novel "The War of the Worlds", and what should be the year the war ends, 1918, becomes the “Year of the Invasion”. The WW1 knights of the air battle against colossal fighting machines. Players will take control of an awesome Martian Tripod, set upon bringing death and destruction on our planet, or fly on the most advanced flying machines created by Mankind at the time.

Tripods & Triplanes is a stand-alone game, fully compatible with the WW1 Wings of Glory game line. The rules and gameplay of Tripods & Triplanes are an extension of the Wings of Glory rules system. The Starter Set features one Tripod model and one Nieuport 16 airplane model, fully assembled and painted, with special gaming bases, maneuver and damage cards, rulers, counters, markers and tokens, a rulebook and a scenario booklet. The game will also present Tripod Packs, expansion packs featuring a miniature, a deck of maneuver cards, counters, and a tripod reference card, to allow players to field more alien machines in their battles.

Two different generations of Martian Tripods land on Earth, in two waves of invasion. The first wave sees the appearance of the Mk.I “Locust”, armed with lethal black smoke launchers, an effective heat-ray, and with an excellent combination of speed and armor, and Mk.II “Scarab”, the most fearful embodiment of the alien technology of the Martians in the first wave of invasion with its powerful heat-ray and nearly-indestructible armored shell. The second wave presents the agile and deadly Mk.III “Squid”, one of the most lethal weapons of the Martian invaders, and the Mk.IV “Cuttlefish”, the ultimate weapon of the invaders with powerful energy shields, long-range heat ray, and multiple black smoke launchers. These four tripods release in Tripods Packs together with the Starter Set.

Tripods & Tripods Gameplay

In Tripods & Triplanes, players control one or more miniatures, to engage their opponents in battles putting the knights of the air against the gigantic fighting machines sent by the Martians to invade Earth.

In Wings of Glory, players choose and play simultaneously maneuver cards to decide the actions of the airplane they control, with different decks of maneuver cards for different planes to represent their movement capabilities. Similarly, in Tripods & Triplanes, each Tripod has a unique maneuver deck which includes different types of cards. Unlike airplanes, Tripods can move (normally, or running) or use stationary maneuvers (to stand still or to reverse), to do special actions. The Martian player can choose among five different actions - Fire Heat Ray, Fire Black Smoke, Change facing, Recharge and Destroy Objective.

Tripods are terrifying opponents for the Earthlings, but sometimes they are clumsy, because of the strong Earth gravity, and they may topple if they do an illegal maneuver, clash against another Tripod, or receive critical damage.

Energy is a critical issue for a Martian player. Each Tripod has a number of Martian Energy tokens equal to its Energy rating, and players must use it wisely, as Tripods need power to fire and to use their armored hood empowered with electric field.

Combat is also similar to Wings of Glory, but with new twists. The Tripod may be protected by energy shields, as indicated on its base, and if the attack comes through a shield, it will only lose some energy, but if an airplane can shoot where the Tripod has no shields, then it can seriously damage the Martian machine with its rockets or machine guns.

In addition to the Heat Ray, another weapon tripods have is the deadly Black Smoke, a lethal cloud which can hit one or more airplanes or can float on the battleground until one airplane enters the cloud…

The mechanics of Tripods & Triplanes will be familiar and easy to learn for Wings of Glory players, but this new set also represent a great starting point for players new to Ares’ popular WW1 Airplane miniature game, thanks to the beautiful miniatures, original setting, and science-fiction theme.