A busy few days: Recon show, Necromunda, The Great War and Wargames magazines.

Last weekend I, with Paul, flew the flag for Pennine Megagames by taking the demo version of ‘Harrying of the North’; it is a simple map movement and battle board participation game.

20171202_141443

The Normans have to hoover up supplies whilst Saxons under Edgar the Etheling try to stop them. It is mainly to show off the combat mechanisms I plan to use in the future megagame. Be honest about it, whilst the game works, it take too long for what would be available in a megagame turn so it needs streamlining more. However, with Fall Blau on the horizon I am devoting my energies into that. I plan to take a demo version of it to the Hammerhead show at Newark and possibly Chillcon in Sheffield. Pleasingly the paper figures that I cut out seemed to be very popular with the punters at Pudsey. Given how little time they took to construct I’m really pleased with how they turned out.

A couple of posts ago I mentioned that my sense of nostalgia had been tweaked by Games Workshop’s reissue of Necromunda. Well my friend Jonathon has a copy so I popped round to have a game.

20171205_151742

Having got such fond memories of the original and gaming in my teenage years I was hoping that it lived up to the hype.

I quickly came up with a Goliath gang and got on with it, I’m pretty sure a few of the subtleties of the rules were missed but it was good to get a feel of the new version.

20171205_153517

The production quality is outstanding, as it should be for such a company, and the new figures are miniature works of art. My choices for the gang weren’t ideal and as the Escher were so very good at ranged combat I took heavy casualties until I got into close combat. Still it was a learning experience and I know what I’d do differently next time.

20171205_162255

I’m really tempted to get the game- sadly running out of space means I may not. I’d love to make a detailed vertical board for it but the question is where to put it… I guess I really should sort out my shed. It may be the impetus I need. Either way I may start with a Goliath gang of my own for a starter; it shouldn’t be too hard to find space for ten figures.

I also played a quick game of PSC’s The Great War with Evan. Given the kickstarter I mentioned has been funded it was good to get it on the table again. The scenario we chose to play was based on the famous action of a tank named ‘Fray Bentos’ at Passchendaele:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/world-war-one/10358335/WW1-The-siege-of-Fray-Bentos-at-the-Battle-of-Passchendaele.html

20171205_202137

My Germans, despite getting off to a good start, failed to achieve much. Aggressive infantry backed up by the immobile but still shooting tank completely outclassed me. Another game I’ll do better at next time….

I also picked up two of the three big wargaming magazines, it is not something I often do but they both had articles that looked interesting, the differences between the two are quite marked though.

20171208_215433

Wargames Illustrated has by far the better production but the depth of the articles left something to be desired: the Russo-Japanese one, whilst featuring some lovely photos was a bit shallow so to speak. The campaign on the fighting in Prussia in WW2 was interesting but could have done with some better editing. Great eye candy though but little in I’d refer back to later beyond the campaign.

Miniature Wargames has undergone a few changed from when I used to buy it; it looks far more professional now. It always had the best articles in but was often let down by poor photos. Under new owners and editorship that has changed. The reason I bought the magazine was that it featured an article on the Warsaw battle 1944 by Jim Webster, he is much under rated as a games writer in my opinion. I’ve always found his writing to be worth the price of admission alone. His ideas on gaming urban warfare are no exception and something I’ll try out on my own table top soon hopefully.

 

Cheers,

 

Pete.

 

 

 

Advertisements

Trench Raiding- a new project perhaps.

On Tuesday Evan and I had game session of PSC’s The Great War, its a cracking game and always fun to play. It did lead to a conversation over a cup of tea post- game about gaming WW1 in general, this lead to us both wanting to do some trench raiding. Obviously the biggest requirement for trench raiding is a trench system itself and this is the usual stumbling block for me as I’ve not more room for major terrain projects. Whilst in an ideal world I’d invest in a set of the great vac- formed trench systems from Early War miniatures link . I then remembered seeing a blog post on a Russo Japanese War trench raid here and thought that it looked like a decent solution. The trench tiles can be foundĀ here . I printed out a couple of pieces; one full size which would be fine for 28mm (I am tempted as there some very nice 28mm ranges but again there is a storage issue) and a couple scaled down a bit for 20mm, these last two I mounted in my usual vinyl tile and clear sticky backed plastic style.

20170824_120153

I grabbed a couple of 20mm figures from the shed (UFM’s RAR as it happens and I think it looks spot on.

I’ll put in an order with Frontline Wargaming for some suitable WW1 figures link : Brit, French, German trench raiders as well as bombers, some basic riflemen to act as opposition and possibly some mortars to act as objectives for the raids.

It should be a fairly cheap project and also make a game that it good to while a way a spare hour or so too.

 

Cheers,

 

Pete.

TANKS! The Kickstarter has arrived.

I mentioned some months ago that the first expansion for Richard Borg’s Great War had been kickstarted by Plastic Soldier Company, well today it finally arrived. I say finally but I wasn’t bothered by the delays, the backers were kept informed all the way through so I wouldn’t want it thought that I was moaning.

IMG_6609

For a very reasonable price I got 13 1/100th tanks and 2 artillery pieces to play an extra 20 scenarios. The box comes with all the extra rules needed as well as a few extra terrain tiles too.

IMG_6610

The prepainted tanks are lovely- lots of Mark IVs (male, female and beute), 2 A7Vs and 3 Whippets. I am trying to resist the temptation to paint the tracks and add a litlle weathering though.

IMG_6611

Given how much I (and everyone I’ve played with) have enjoyed the base game I can’t wait to get started with this.

 

Cheers,

 

Pete.

The Great War- Kickstarter boardgame arrival.

Today my copy of Richard Borg’s new boardgame arrived.

IMG_6308

I backed the kickstarter and am really pleased that it arrived in the time frame stated. The game came with the stretch goals that formed part of the funding campaign- namely an extra two scenarios, plastic artillery pieces and white metal command figures.

IMG_6309

I haven’t had the time to have a proper look in the box but all the parts seem to be a decent quality and plenty of figures too. As they are in 15mm I’m tempted to swap them out for 20mm versions so they match the rest of my collection (and flog the 15s) though this may well depend if Plastic Soldier Company upscale the sprues as they have done with their other releases.

Either way I’m looking forward to giving the game a go- hopefully it will be easy enough for younger members of the family to play it too.

IMG_6310

Cheers,

Pete.

More WW1 tanks.

I’m still collecting 20mm WW1 tank kits with no real purpose in mind other than I like it, though I often consider some sort of Plan 1919, the ideas were there for the genesis of modern mechanized warfare but (fortunately) the war ended before they had to be implemented.

These two are from Early War Minitures: http://earlywarminiatures.com/

IMG_6062

We have a Mark V female which made its debut at the Battle of Hamel and a Mark IX supply/ personnel carrier tank, a few were finished by the time of the armistice but did not any service.

IMG_6060

IMG_6061

The last Mark IX can be found in the Bovington Tank Museum.

I did find this short video of a Mark IX being used for amphibious trials post- armistice.

Cheers,

Pete.

‘The Price of Victory’- Somme Megagame, Royal Armouries, Leeds.

Last Saturday I, along with Brian, Chris and Evan went over to the Royal Armouries for another megagame. This time it was was designed by Dave Boundy and was based on the opening part of the Somme Battle (or is it better considered a campaign- discuss below I guess). The players were split into pairs mainly commanding Corps, though 3-4 Corps were controlled by a pair of players acting at the Army level, 2 Armies for the Brits 1 for the Germans. Brian and I were in charge of III Corps, whilst Chris and Evan were further South from us. After a bit of planning , a player from each Corps went to the main map to play out the move, much like a standard board game.

Pre game organization, sorting out counters and delineating Corps/Army boundries.

Pre game organization, sorting out counters and delineating Corps/Army boundries.

More of the same but looking up the table, it was in a 'L' shape with Brian and I playing at the corner.

More of the same but looking up the table, it was in a ‘L’ shape with Brian and I playing at the corner.

The Army commanders just had this small map to work from, they had to imaging that they were in a Chateau themselves.

The Army commanders just had this small map to work from, they had to imaging that they were in a Chateau themselves.

Our initial starting forces, counters were mostly Brigades, the small blocks representing artillery targets- these were reduced in number as the day went on.

Our initial starting forces, counters were mostly Brigades, the small blocks representing artillery targets- these were reduced in number as the day went on.

Over the top lads, attempting to break into the German first line.

Over the top lads, attempting to break into the German first line.

At this point in the game our Army had got through to the second line of the German's defences but the other Army hadn't been as successful (it had taken some very heavy casualties in the opening stages. As a result during a lull the Germans had dug an additional line of trenches conntecting the two offering up an awkward position to attavk, right on the Army boundary too (just to add to the difficulties).

At this point in the game our Army had got through to the second line of the German’s defences but the other Army hadn’t been as successful (it had taken some very heavy casualties in the opening stages. As a result during a lull the Germans had dug an additional line of trenches conntecting the two offering up an awkward position to attavk, right on the Army boundary too (just to add to the difficulties).

Another view of the Army map, they weren't allowed to visit the main table but only had to rely on the reports for the various Corps. A difference in definition between the two Armies didn't help matters much either.

Another view of the Army map, they weren’t allowed to visit the main table but only had to rely on the reports for the various Corps. A difference in definition between the two Armies didn’t help matters much either.

At the end of the game- just about to reach the Second (by now heavily reinforced) line of trenches. So near but so far.

At the end of the game- just about to reach the Second (by now heavily reinforced) line of trenches. So near but so far.

One thing that gave the game a WW1 flavour and made it a rather (realistically?) frustrating experience was the need to keep a continuous line linking all of the Brigade, this meant the any local success had to be abandoned for the most part and and isolated pockets couldn’t be bypassed. This meant that, in practical terms, that everyone had to do well or else we were all pushed back to where we had come from. From that you can see how different the tactics of the Stosstruppen.

On a slightly critical note the planning level at Corps level seemed a bit redundant, I never did any given we were playing face to face. Still it was a good day, the gamers there are always a good crowd and it was nice to put another name to a ‘Universe’ face.

Next one is in October and it is Classical Greece- I’m threatening to go in costume too.

http://www.megagame-makers.org.uk/

Cheers,

Pete.