Sunday, February 10, 2013

Run

Figures: Rackham 28mm
Rules:Tomorrows War
GM: Jerry Acord


Well its about time I got a game in. After fighting a cold off and on for 4 weeks and missing several game opportunities I finally got to play. I hosted a game at my place so my good friend Jerry could playtest a game for an upcoming ECC convention in New York. He scaled the game down to a 6' x 4' board, initially it was designed for 5' x 8". Since he has to haul everything for a 3 to 4 hour drive north he downsized.

The game set up is simple. The Red Blok forces start off hidden in buildings and must try to escape off of the board edge. Points are awarded for each unit leaving the table. The power armor troops are the most valuable and must be exited for the Red Blok player to win. Some infantry and anti tank teams can be sacrificed but additional troops must also leave to boost up the point total.

The UNA forces start off of the board. Their infantry attack is supported by 2 walking bad ass tanks known as Firetoads. These are killers and a formidable presence on the field. The UNA also have jump troops able to ignore terrain features and can fast move (fly) up to 16 inches.

Since the Red Blok start off hidden they can attempt to ambush the advancing UNA or retreat. The UNA are given the initiative and enter on the forst turn. After the first turn each side will roll initiative as per the rules. In our game the UNA kept the initiative the entire game and the RED BLOK used noninitiative moves to run away and firing only when necessary. The Red Blok players must remember the victory conditions...GET OFF OF THE BOARD!

The UNA takes the initiative and advances into the buildings and structures. The Red Blok remains hidden and decides to have the Power Armor units run while the infantry covers their movement. In the first turn the UNA advanced with little opposition. I have a unit of infantry open fire which starts at a roadblock and is not hidden. I sacrifice them to slow down the UNA juggernaut.

As the UNA advance their firepower does severe damage. My ATR team had a great shot at a Fire Toad walking tank but missed. My poor roll caused their untimely death. In the follow up attack te UNA also knocked out most of the power armor infantry of one fire team. A bad start for Red Blok. On the first aid roll the Power armor regained most of the unit. The UNA kept the initiative through the game and the Red Blok reacted by moving back and using regualr infantry in defensible positions to give cover fire.

The Red Block was able to fall back during reaction movement in every turn. We tried not to engage in a round of fire to avoid UNA fire power superiority. Once a heavy casualty is scored on a figure in the unit movement is restricted and morale can suffer. Off board artillery strikes from medium mortars by the Red Blok did take out a fire toad. The Red Blok did not use smoke as it did little good and used an activation. I stuck to running away every chance I got.

In the end we managed to get some power armor and regular infantry off of the board so the Red Blok score 16 points. The UNA took out some power armor and infantry team scoring 5 point. It was a Red Blok victory. The game seemed to be balanced when we added the hidden starting positions for the Red Blok. This game lasted about 3 hours and we got in about 6 turns. In another playtest we had the UNA come on the board and they killed off most of the Red Blok in 2 turns, not a fun game for a convention. Thank goodness for playtesting. Now its off to New York to the ECC convention. Good luck Jerry.



2 UNA fire teams

UNA fire team close up...they were touched up but come pre-painted

Walking Tanks a.k.a. Fire Toads...we only used 2 of the 3

UNA right flank

The UNA left flank

Center of the board

Red Blok Power Armor

ATR team in the back

Power armor with infantry support...they start hidden

UNA forces advance from the left side

=
Red Blok forces wait from the barricades...my spped bump

Power Armor and ATR team Casualties

A Fire Toad approaches

A Power Armor team makes it to the trees.

Jump troops move up on the left flank

The red Blok takes the brunt of the firefight

Red Block units take cover

The Fire Toad is taken out by artillery strike

The jump troops moved quick and did stop some power armor from getting away.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Russian Command 1812

I ordered several Perry figures from The Warstore and received the shipment very quickly. Neal is great to do business with and I was surprised at the prompt service.

So far this month I painted a unit of Russian Jagers and the Russian general staff of the 1812 campaign. I finished my 9th infantry unit as well. Basically I block painted and used lighter shades to hi-lite the basic colors. Then I used Army painter dark tone for the dip process. I did not dip the figures directly but did brush it on.

 The figures in the pictures below are all Perry. I am not a professional painter and would never claim to be an expert. I really like the results and the painting time was reduced greatly. I am very happy with the result which is all that really matters.


Perry's General staff

Russian Command bases

I did order 8 guns and crews from Old Glory to build up my army. I am looking forward to painting and dipping in the future. The Rebel minis are next up on the painting table as I need a break from Napoleonics. Burning out is always a concern and I need a change.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

The Raid that Wasn't

Rules: Muskets and Tomahawks
Scale 25-28mm
Figures: Galloping Major and Conquest

This is my second game of M&T and I am now inspired to do a game using these rules. My order for some Blue Moon AWI figures was just placed. We placed the terrain and then rolled to see what game we were playing. The British are defending and the French are raiding and must set as many buildings on fire as possible. I am playing the French with Jim F while Jerry and Joe D. are playing the British. I took the 3 Indian units and a unit of Coureur des bois (Rifles) while Jim F took the French Irregulars. Jerry took the Rangers and militia while Joe D took Militia, Provincials and Indians. Each side had about 550 pts.

Set up - French enter from the top across the stream...yikes.
We set up and started quickly. The French advanced and tried to get across the stream as fast as possible, we did not stop to fire as we wanted to close quickly.  Unfortunately the militia beat us to the crossing.and began firing before we were across.

Indians dash across the stream
 The first unit of Indians closest to the militia was shot down. I thought I would sacrifice one unit to get the others across but it was not to be. The cards favored the British.
Joe D and Jerry.... nice scalps ...they will look nice hanging on a belt
 The French irregulars fared better as they advanced across the stream and made it into the woods. The British forces were holding back closer to the buildings.


French irregulars make it
 British fire erupted from the block house and fence line. a few French did fall dead into the stream.


Fire from the block house

The British await
 Meanwhile the Rangers have fun picking off a lot of native troops. I figure I just need to close in but I got repulsed and took more fire. The Native troops did not stand a chance.

Taking fire from the woods
 I did get a few figures on the flank but the British milita cards came up first. My best chance to close was now gone. The Rangers charged my Indians and I did account well but could not win as I was outnumbered. Finally my Coureur des bois had a target to shoot at and their rifles took out some of the victorious Rangers who fell back.

Indians move to flank
 Meanwhile the French irregulars slowly advanced . One unit held back by the stream while the rest did an end around move using the woods as cover.

French still moving up
 The British militia in the center moved to cover the block house as the french advanced from the stream. Shots are fired but the woods gives excellent cover and few if any casualties are taken by the irregulars.

British move to support the blockhouse
 As tfor the Indians they are wiped out. The melee and musket fire destroyed their numbers. I just couldn't get the cards to fall or the dice to help. It was a bad day for the nation.

The trail of dead....with a few Rangers mixed in.
 Meanwhile on the left, the French irregulars pour fire into the British from the woods. British casualties mount as the faint of heart fall back. The Provincials have now entered and move up to support the wavering militia.

The British right flank is in trouble.

Above view from the ever present drone
 The firing on the British right intensifies units can not reload fast enough. The French make progressand begin the push. At this point my only unit of Coureurs was moving to support in the center. They were slowed by reloading the rifles which takes 2 actions! It made a difference.

Everybody Fire!
A unit of French did make it to the block house to set it on fire, but it was too little too late. We had nothing left to follow up the success. We lost well over half the French and the British had most of their units left in good order. We called the game. In the 2 games I played the attackers were gunned down rather quickly. The lesson I learned is that you need to decide where you are going to attack and overload that side with a lot of units. A broad front attack is easily beaten; at least in the 2 games I played. We finished in under 3 hours which is good for us who were tired after working all day. I ould love to do an AWI game in the future and plan to run a game at Cold Wars 2014. I have a new project!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Army Shade Dark Tone Results

I rarely use dip when painting figures. I did buy some dark tone at the last convention I attended. I was not sure if I should have bought the medium tone or the dark tone. I did get the dark for reasons unknown. My son took advantage of the Rebel Minis sale (20% off) and bought the Kurgan and Earth Force Marines. He wants to use the dip method to speed up the painting process. Before we dip new figures I thought a test on some extra figures should be done. (Actually he just walked through the door from work with the box of figures he ordered, accompanied by a big grin). Thanks for great service Rebel minis!

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The figures had the dip applied with a Q-tip with the excess removed to avoid the figure becoming too dark. I then applied dull coat from a spray can to knock the shine down. I was afraid the dark tone would be too dark but I like the result.

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I was sure I would need to go over the figure again. I did not need to as long as I removed some of the excess dip. I also avoioded using darker colors. The blue on the figure on the left is a very light blue that was darkened by the dip. I painted one of the cuffs a medium blue and the result was a darker blue.

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The photo of the Russian grenadier is hard to see. The medium green came out very dark and I should have removed more dip. I purposely left the excess on the figure to see what would happen. Well that's the story on dark tone. Apply with a brush or Q-tip and remove some of the excess; then hit the figure with dull coat. I am thinking of getting some Minwax Polyshade Tudor Black. I think there is a lighter shading effect.






Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year - 2013 Goals

Well the world didn't end so another year of gaming lies ahead. I have a list of things I would like to accomplish in 2013 like most other people. I hate the term "resolutions" as I like to work toward something so I use the word "goal" instead.

My goals and plans for 2013 are:

1. Get in better shape. This isn't really a gaming goal but it does affect gaming. I always eat snacks while gaming and I need to ease up. I lost a lot of weight in 2012 and I want to keep going. It is always harder to work out the next morning after eating (over eating) snacks during a game night. I am always tempted to skip the work out and pick up the paint brush. I do have more energy for gaming since I started working out so it is a Win/Win.

2. Finish up my 25/28mm 1812 Russians. I still need artillery, cavalry and a few more infantry units. I ordered the Perry Russian high command pack from the Warstore last night. This is a difficult goal as I am really tired of painting Russians. if I move on to something else I will never finish the forces I need. There is only one problem, when do you really ever finish a range? Completing a range has never been truly defined by anyone.

3.  Terrain Boards. I would like to complete some terrain boards for 25mm gaming. I do get tired of the old cloth. I would like to try Gesso on insulation boards to see what I can do. The boards would be for 25mm Napoleonic gaming in Russia but wil lproably have multiple uses. The problem would be storage, but I need to work that out with the wife. I am moving her sewing room up to the duaghte's old bedroom.

4. Buy some support figures for the 25/28mm Napoleonics I want to fill the battlefield with things other than combat troops. Ammo wagons, civilians, field forge. mule train or apothecary wagon from Perry would be good. It is pricey but it really rounds out a collection. I would like to purchase a little each month from the Warstore.

5. Collect 25mm Old Glory Napoleonic Bavarians. I would like to play the 1st battle of Polotsk. Bavarians and supporting French taking on the Russians. it just appeals to me, I don't know why.

6. Start collecting 10mm Seven years war figures. I have the OOB for

Leuthen and Lobositz. I would like to start the collection after i get my Napoleonic collection in order. Preferably after the Bavarians are done.

Obstacles - Of course there are obstacles to my goals. I just need to figure out how to overcome them.

The first is the financial obstacle as 25's and 28's are more expensive than other ranges, even with an OG discount. How do you over come this...legally? If I buy a little each month it won't be so bad. Besides it keeps the back log down.

The second is that I am like any other gamer/collector; I have trouble staying on task. I am easily distracted by new figure ranges that look really nice. My son just notified me that he bought  some 15mm scifi figures from Rebel, so the distraction has already begun. I don't know how to overcome this obstacle as it is a hazard that come with the hobby.

The third is the lack of time.  I have little time to paint or play as life has a way of getting in the way. The summer is the worst of all as yard work and chores steal hobby time.How do you overcome something like this? I plan to let the house fall apart this year.

Well there it is, it will be interesting to look back from December to see what i actually accomplish. What are your 2013 goals? 

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Stargate Playtest

Figures: 25mm Westwind and Phoenix
Rules: FUBAR
GM: Jim Carpenter

GAME 1 - Something Wicked This Way Comes
Our group has not played FUBAR before so we playtested 2 games. The first game involved 2 SG teams travelling to a distant planet previously unknown. Kyle and I each take a team. We read the one page rules and give it a try. Jim is running the opposing force and waited 5 years to get this game going.

SG1 and SG7 travelled through the gate and arrive in a brilliant flash of light. The teams descend the stairs.Oneal calls for a comms check, all seems ok. 



SGate 002
The Stargate

The teams have come to a river. The area is very quiet and no sounds of life can be heard. Oneal calls for SG7 to go right and check out the rock formation.



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SG7

They see several figures shambling toward them. The teams prepare themselves for the unknown. The figures look odd in their movement as they steadily advance.




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SG1 with all the characters

Rustling can be heard in the distance. The first signs of life have been found. Soon the droning of groans and growls can be heard . "Sir I think this was a bad idea.....this is a dead planet." Oneal ponders and ecides to protect the Stargate and calls "We'll hold the line here SG7, its our only way home so we must protect the perimeter!....Over!"

Each squad has a person with a pistol, SMGs, and AR and grenades. The range of the pistol is 8", the SMG is 16", the AR is 24" so you need to be close to attack.


SGate 005
Teal'c prepares a welcome....nice figure.

The teams prepare to fire from opposite sides of the ford. "Weapons are hot, prepare to fire!"

"Click"

"Roger SG1...weapons hot....pick you targets"

We used zombies to get the game mechanics down. This allowed us to move squads about the field with little interference. The zombies were organized into groups and given Veteran status. Every hit was a potential casualty as we ignored suppressions for the horde. Zombies were given a save of 4+ for every hit on them as they are more difficult to bring down..


We also debated giving them the ability to move 6" without the need for activation. Hidden zombies would automatically activate when a figure moves within 6 inches.



SGate 006
Groups of dead inhabitants emerge.
 Before the horde can make it to the river the steady sound of automatic weapons fire begins the grisly talley.

The squads fire across the river and start dropping the dead as they reach the far banks. Continuous fire stacks up the bodies quickly as we gave the zombies a save of 6. This was too high as no saves were made in the initial contact. We changed the save to a 4+.

SGate 007
The crossing

As the last of the horde closed in they were dropped quickly by accurate fire. Oneill calls, "Cease fire, Cease fire.....We got them all....Lets get out of here!

This was a very quick game. The zombies did not last long and the game ended in about 45 minutes. The dead piled up in the river from the weapons fire. Allowing the 4+ save gave the dead a better survival but there was just too much fire power from the 2 squads who fired and moved back. We soon called the game due to lack of balance.

GAME 2 -The Jewel of Denial



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Phoenix figures and a Mayan from some other company Jim can't remember because he is getting old.
 I broke out my terrain that could be used with Jim's temple. We were glad to see how well the rock formations went with the temple. The Jaffar are from Phoenix and the Goa'uld is a mystery. They have light armor allowing a save of 5+, not great but better than most.


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The temple and the shiny rock
 The ancient temple houses a relic which is the objective of the SG teams and the DIA. Who will win the day?

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The jewel is on the altar and needs to be captured to win.
 A view from the stargate shows the temple in the background. This will be the entry point of both SG teams. The Goa'uld and the Jaffar


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A view from the Stargate to the temple

The SG team appears and can see the temple. It seems like a short distance but you need to activate to move, which is not a sure thing.

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With a flash the teams arrive


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Dramatic pose



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The view of the battle field
 The plan is for SG7 to go right while SG1 goes left. I win the initiative and activate SG7. They go through first and look for an ambush. I consider SG7 the red shirts of the game, my canon fodder if you will. The heroes of SG1 will then move in after all the hard work is done and take the glory.


SGate 029
The Goa'uld, he is not a system lord yet, but the night is young
 Ok the plan goes awry on turn 1. SG7 appears and has to move to the right to take cover in the woods. SG1 fails to activate so they will be late to the party. SG7 advances deeper on the next activation and decides to work their way around the woods to the temple unseen.

On turn 2 SG1 arrives and must take cover quickly as a squad of Jaffar advance with their boom sticks. A firefight erupts and the Jaffar take casualties.


SGate 030
SG1 is in cover and can not be seen.

SG1 gets suppressed in the process and continues to take fire. They shake off the suppression on the following turn and fire killing more Jaffar.



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SG1 is suppressed
 With SG1 suppressed and SG7 flanking the field another group of humans arrive. Its the DIA and they want the same objective. The DIA manage to gun down another squad of Jaffar and then negotiate the stream. The trade shots with the Goa'uld blocking the entrance and he is suppressed. SG7 takes the opportunity on a won intiative to gun down a heavy weapon outpost and dash to the temple.


SGate 032
The DIA show up and they are looking for the jewel as well.
 The sprint is a 12" move and the team is not eligable to fire. Sg7 wins the move and just beats the DIA in a foot race to the temple. With guns drawn the DIA and SG7 stare each other down. A classic standoff as Oneill and the other overpaid members of SG1 are nowhere to be seen.


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A sprint to the stone.


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The DIA arrive...too late?

The leader of each team faces off in a brawl to decide the fate of the mission. The DIA sens out a hulking figure to take up the challenge. SG7 sends out their babe to beat some sense into the hulking brute. The combat was won in the first roll as the SG7 chic goes for the nads and takes out the man ape from the DIA.

Nobody saw that coming. Game over.



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Leaders face off....the Goa'uld lies there like a slug....his only defense.

RECAP
The rules are fun and I will play them again with any modern/sci-fi game. The rules are free which is also great. I would use teams of 3 or 4 figures as rolling 12 dice seems like a lot in one attack. The short weapons range means you should have a terrain heavy board. Zombies are fun in these rules too but they should save on a 4+ to make it more challenging. We all had a blast and the rules are quick to learn. We did miss some details but it doesn't matter. A fun couple of games.