Ghar transport and combat vehicles are based on walker designs, vehicles that use legs to pick their way over awkward battlefields. Though largely Cumbersome (pick up a pin on a failed Ag test over difficult terrain), they elevate the Ghar to heights above the heads of most opponents.
Most crawlers all use the same chassis and most of the same bodywork, that of a Ghar heavy crawler, and most use Scourer cannon as their basic armament. Fartok had his rebel engineers combine Ghar crawler technology with scavenged mag weapons to produce the Battle Group 9 (BG9) Attack Crawler, but also had his engineers trawl through salvaged crawler parts to merge them with plasma reactors and Algoryn skimmers to produce the ‘creeper‘.
The relatively open crew positions on the Ghar creepers and crawlers means that pilots, commanders and gunners can fight in hand-to-hand using their plasma grenades, though the vehicle cannot initiate an assault.
To Ghar, the shells of Algoryn skimmers are made of materials that are strange, quite unlike the familiar onion-like layers of metals and composites used to make the bodies of Ghar equipment. These weird materials do have the benefit of being exceptionally lightweight and strong even without the benefit of powerful magnetic shields so they can be adapted to take the weight of Ghar technology and power strange hybrids. Nonetheless, Fartok’s technicians paired salvaged skimmers with Ghar plasma reactors and mechanical crawler legs to produce a vehicle large enough for two crew, a driver and gunner.
The basic creeper is a MOD 2 vehicle with a scavenged mag light support, thought his can be replaced with a scavenged mag cannon. It is slightly faster than other walkers and more agile (Ag 5) but is lightly protected, having a Res of 11.
Ghar Command Crawler
The most important Ghar leaders direct their forces from multi-legged Command Crawlers, the Ghar crawler design intended to allow its Commander to direct battlefield operations from behind the safety of the vehicle’s heavy metallic armoured shells and ancillary magnetic shielding that protects the open crew compartments.
Ghar communications are not as effective as most Antarean systems. This is partly due to the waves of radiation that spill from volatile plasma reactors, and partly because of all the random fractures in space-time generated by Ghar disruptor weaponry. This means that Ghar command crawlers have to get close to the fighting to be able to function, and by necessity they have to be capable of looking after themselves. Nonetheless, the boosted communications is of particular use for High Commanders where the equipment boosts their Co to 10.
Force Commander crawlers receive the Ace special rule, and the High Commander’s crawler Ace 2 (there can only be one High Commander). This helps reduce the effects of Damage Chart rolls and reflects the commander’s skill at choosing good, defensive ground. Of course, with the High Commander’s 20″ Command and hero radius, the command crawler is likely to be in the thick of the most critical action.
Heavy Scourer Crawler
The Ghar Heavy Scourer Crawler is, in effect,a Ghar Command crawler but without the command instrumentation. It is tough (Res 13), and a fearsome weapon mount fielding two scourer cannon.
Ghar Bombardment Crawler
Packing the heavy disruptor bomber in place of a command position, the Bombardment Crawler is a fearsome machine as it also carries two scourer cannon: any shot from this walker can guarantee no one walks away unscathed! Using their standard crawler design the Ghar have created a variant of crawler that rains the heaviest, ground-based disruptor shells down onto their adversaries. It is still Res 13, M5, but is not very agile (Ag 3).
Disruptors are all bomblike shells, which release a powerful quantum gravity blast when they explode (Blast D10×SV2 hits on the heavy disruptor). This tears apart physical matter, wreaking havoc with sophisticated nanobased technologies, and creates residual spacial distortion that can often render battleﬁelds uninhabitable for years. Only the Ghar are reckless or ignorant enough to tamper with the physical cohesiveness of the universe in this way. Using such experimental weaponry has its risks, but the Ghar do what they need to ensure victory.
On the table, it’s best to set up the Bombardment Crawler where it can see as far as possible. Whilst this may mean it is exposed, it is fairly tough so can withstand some punishment. It helps to have a munitions scutter nearby to keep the disruptor weapon loaded.
A key advantage is that each weapon system is mounted separately and all can fire various sizes of disruptor bombs. At its theoretical worst, with Fire orders the crawler can engage as many as six targets in a single turn (3 weapon systems * 2 activations), dishing out up to 12 pins as it does so! This means the crawler often attracts a great deal of enemy fire.
BG9 Attack Crawler
One of the modifications made by Fartok’s Outcast Rebels was to add a crew position and one of a number of weapons to the front of the general crawler and replaced burnt-out scourers with mag weapons. As ever, the experiments on quad mag repeaters were a disaster (treat the models as mag light support), but the scavenged mag cannon and MLS proved as useful as they were on the creeper.
[Note: Like many ex-Rebel Outcast items, the store may still show this as a Rebel Outcast vehicle rather than a Battlegroup Nine vehicles]