No Prayer For The Dying by Steve Blease

Issue: 18
System: Iron Cow
Publisher: Wessex Games

No Prayer For The Dying
The Kra'Vak in Iron Cow
by Steve Blease


One of the most interesting introductions to the Full Thrust universe was the first alien race encountered by humanity - the Kra'Vak. Warlike in the extreme, their spaceships cause fear in the hearts of the most hardened human admiral. Given their impact in space (and the fact that CMDesigns make some lovely Kra'Vak AFVs now available from Ground Zero Games as part of the Future Wars range), I had to introduce them into Iron Cow.

Taking the technology levels of the Kra'Vak spaceships compared to human vessels as a basis, the following rules and stats will allow you to introduce the Kra'Vak into Iron Cow, very easilly. As with their spaceships, Kra'Vak AFVs are quite fast and noticeably more powerful than even the best human weapons systems, but there are weaknesses to Kra'Vak forces which a good general should be able to find (you just have to hope that the Kra'Vak general hasn't compensated for them!).


By their very nature Kra'Vak troops are extremely beligerent, a factor that can work to their disadvantage in a battle. The Kra'Vak general only has half the HQ APCs available to him that a human player normally has and this will limit his ability to control his troops. His major problem is that units NOT issued with an order will not automatically remain static awaiting activation, but will make a full Advance move towards the enemy, regardless of the battlefield situation. They can only be stopped by successfully issuing the unit with a Static or Cautious Advance order. A unit issued with an Advance order can move between 55% to 100% of their move distance as normal. A unit advancing of its own volation must move a minimum 75% of its move distance.

Further a Kra'Vak unit that has been following a Static or Cautious Advance order for three consecutive moves must be issued with fresh orders or they will automatically check to see if their nature gets the better of them and they revert to full Advance status. To check this they must roll lower than their morale factor on a D10. The result in the D10 is modified by adding to the score the number of turns since the unit was last issued orders.

Morale and Initiative:

Kra'Vak troops are very good and have a Morale Factor of + 6 and an Initiative Facor of + 6. All other modifiers and rules are as standard.

Unit Organisation:

The basic Kra'Vak Asault Force is organised along the following lines:

  • One HQ Unit consisting of two Ki'Ca MBTs, two Ki'Va AAA and two Tu'Ha HQ APCs
  • Three Tank Platoons each consisting of one Tu'Ha Command APC and three sections of MBTs, two of three Ha'Iv MBTs and one of three Ki'Ca MBTs
  • One Mechanised Infantry Platoon consisting of one Tu'Ha Command APC and three sections consisting of three Tu'Ha APCs each carrying an infantry squad
  • One VTOL Platoon consisting of a Ki'Va Command VTOL with three sections each of one Ki'Ta VTOL and two Ki'Va VTOLs

Statistic Tables:

Nationality: The Kra'Vak
Type Speed
Ranges (mm)   %/Penetration Defence Factor AA Factor CMD Model GZG Model
Ha'Iv Light Grav Tank30080/1870/1660/1450/1235/1020/8161062FWAT-1DF-K01
Ki'Ca Heavy Grav Tank24080/2470/2260/2050/1840/1620/14221482FWAT-2DF-K02
Ki'Vas AAA Grav Tank24080/2065/1845/1425/1010/8-221482FWAT-3DF-K03
Tu'Ha APC32080/1660/1445/1225/1010/8-14842FWAI-1DF-K04
Ki'Ta Attack VTOL50080/2465/2250/2040/1825/1610/141684-FWAF-1DF-K05
Ki'Iv Scout VTOL62580/1660/1445/1220/105/8-1462-FWAF-2DF-K06
Infantry Squad10080/1260/1040/815/4--2223-DSM-134

Model Availability:

CMDesigns do a small range of Kra'Vak vehicles which I've supplied stats for. Whether Paul intends to develop the line further is anyones guess, but it is one that has been very quiet for a long time now so its seems unlikely. However as CMD are prepared to sell bits and pieces of models, there is nothing to stop you buying hulls and creating some other AFVs. For intantry I used the Games Workshop Epic Eldar which, although they look nothing like the GZG 25mm Kra'Vak, they do look nice with the vehilces and are sufficiently alien looking ( you could of course use Orks which look more Kra'Vak like in stature and appearance, but it's up to you...).
(Ground Zero Games now produce both tanks and infantry for the Kra'Vak in 6mm.)

Random Thoughts:

As stated above the Kra'Vak is a very powerful adversary but not an unbeatable one. In a slugfest in open country they are pretty much top dogs, but with pleanty of terrain on the table and utilising the ambush rules along with the fact that the Kra'Vak have no artillery, the balance can be addressed, just watch out for sneak VTOL attacks on your HQ and/or artillery... Airstrikes are also a useful option, but ensure you come in on a Fast Attack when there is a Ki'Vass AAA Tank in the target zone.

No Prayer For The Dying
(the Defence of Calhendra IV 2185 AD):

Situation: a sparsely populated NSL frontiersworld, Calhendra IV has been invested by alien Kra'Vak forces as they smash humanties best efforts to resist them following the violent first contact. With only Völksgrenadier forces and the remnants of a small Dutch mercenary unit, the situation looks bleak for the human forces, but they are determined to resist long enough to allow the successful evacuation of the civilian population.

Attackers: the Kra'Vak player has a standard Kra'Vak Assault Force (detailed above) at his disposal and will enter the table from the east. He has to cross the table as swiftly as possible destroying or routing all enemy forces on the board.

Defenders: the Human player has the following forces at his disposal:

  • NSL 685th Völksgrenadier Brigade (reduced) (Morale +4)
    • One HQ Unit (one Ludendorff MBT & four Von der Goltz HQ APCs)
    • One Tank Section (one Von der Goltz Command APC & three Ludendorff MBTs)
    • Two Mechanised Infantry Platoon (each of one Command Von der Goltz APC & two sections of two Militia Infantry squads and twoVon der Goltz APCs)
    • One Artillery Battery
    • One VTOL Section (three Galland VTOLs)
  • 3/16th Van Kliestmann Armoured Brigade (detached elements) (Morale +5)
    • One HQ Unit (two Ares MBTs & two BMP-30 PA HQ APCs)
    • One Tank Platoon (one Command BMP-30 PA APC & fourSections of three Ares MBTs)
    • One Mechanised Infantry Platoon (one Command BMP-30 PA APC & three sections of two BMP-30 PA APC with two squads of infantry each)

The human player must resist the alien advance for eight plus D4 moves and then make an orderly withdrawl of any remaining forces from the board to win the game. He may use the ambush rules as per the rulebook and has one airstrike at his disposal that he can call on...

Ed Note: Iron Cow is a 6mm (Epic) SF Armour rules system produced by Wessex Games and was reviewed in Ragnarok 19. A revised edition, Iron Cow 2103AD, was reviewed in Ragnaraok 39. For further details regarding price and availability, send an SSAE to Wessex Games, 4 Old Acre Road, Whitchurch, Bristol, BS14 0HN.