Monday, 5 September 2016

The Battle of Tribola 147 BC at Hereward wargames show

Made my first trip to the Hereward show in Peterborough yesterday, putting on a To The Strongest! game with James Morris and Simon Miller, along with Matt and Doug. 
James devised a scenario based upon the named action, where a column of Romans impetuously followed their Lusitanian foe into a valley where they were properly ambushed. I supplied the Romans, Simon is the author of these rather spiffing rules, and James brought his lovely Spanish army and all of the scenery - including the rather special mountain that was, of course, Keren in a previous life.

View from the mountainside

The Spanish start to realise that the Romans aren't running away!

Simon doing the wargamers point

Simon explaining finer points of the rules

All in all a very successful day. I didn't actually play - mostly hovering about chatting with punters and helping the gamers who joined in.

We all expected the scenario to pretty much lead to a Roman squishing, but the first game went on for ages and actually very nearly turned into a Roman victory as Tim (I think) , took grave offence at the audacity of these Iberians, and went on the offensive, not trying to withdraw his army at all, but rather crush the Lusitanians in toe-to-toe combat!
The Romans get offensive!

In the afternoon, a rather smaller engagement was played, using the leading legions , and I believe this went a little more to plan, with Matt being assisted by a young lady who took the glory.

I had a bit of a look around the show but didn't buy anything. (apart from a bacon cob!) It's noticeable how many smaller games there are these days - lots of 'big skirmishy' type of things - not that that's a bad thing - people seemed to be having a lot of fun over both halls, and many games were still in full swing as the traders were packing up after 4 o'clock.

Having picked up Sharp Practice 2 this year, I've yet to have a game, and I'm starting to work out the best way to do it. (I'd really like to collect stuff for the 'Maximillian adventure' but cost is a limiting factor).

A few crappy pictures from around the show..

This was actually a very loud and fun game, doesn't look like it here does it?


I was just thinking.. 'Could I use Sharp Practice' for Mars? And Yes, yes you can.

A real masterpiece this one - Benfleet

Now that's what 'Saga' should look like!

A few more pictures just didn't come out very well, but there were some other nice looking games on display.

Thursday, 25 August 2016

Roman in the Gloamin'...

Strewth it's been  long while!! Quite a few reasons.. kind of lost my mojo and there have been some pretty big family issues to deal with. I have been able to keep up a little with some rail modelling, painting the odd figure (finally got my fourth Italian Ala painted up).. but haven't had a game in months. Until this week...

The mounted Lusitanian flank apply pressure

James Morris was in touch recently and I've signed up for putting on a Romans in Spain game at the Hereward show in a couple of weeks, with Simon Miller (we'll be using his 'To The Strongest! rules) and Matt Moran.

Simon has tweaked the Roman infantry rules, or at least, provided an alternative, to try to counter the frailty of the small legion units, and to reflect some recent thinking in "Slingshot", the journal of the Society of Ancients. The Hastatii and Principes join to form a standard unit and have some special rules that allow them to swap places, bolstering the saves and re-arming the pila.

I was keen to try the new rules out, and just to have a refresher really, as I'd rather be fairly au fait once punters turn up at Hereward and ask what we're doing!

Anyhoo.. the other evening I drove over to James' house and we spent the evening playing a very enjoyable 155 point game with my Romans vs his Lusitanians, and of course, chatting generally about gaming, history, figures and basing, and ideas for the upcoming demo game.

James setting up the Lusitanians (Romans opposite) note the attractive cloth with subtle grid

I won't provide a battle report, as James has done a cracking job of that over on the Lead Adventure forum, along with some nice photos of the game in action.

See here:

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Miss the Kidd! WW2 Pacific Participation game at Hammerhead

Never been to Hammerhead before.. But when Quint asked if I fancied 'Helping' with his fun 'Miss the Kidd' game, I was more than happy to come along.

Hammerhead is all participation, getting punters to play lots of games - so lots of ingenuity on show.. nobody wants to spend 3 hours looking up charts in this environment.

Our games hosted 2 to 5 players mostly - they took the part of AA gunners on the Kidd, trying to stop waves of Japanese planes  - players plotted their fire by placing flak markers on the table, predicting a hex and height band before we moved the flights randomly. Most games lasted about 15 minutes and as well as trying to stop the Japanese planes, the players were in competition with each other to score the most hits.

Pleased to say that most of the winners were youngsters - I'd say under 10 years old, and were very happy, not only with winning, but the badges that Quint had made up as prizes too!

I didn't get any good pictures of the game in full flow, as I was busy pushing planes around.. but a random selection, and a few random ones from around the floor too..

(PS strangest thing, the only thing I bought all day was two cups of tea! A good thing, but a little boring!)

James Morris' WW1 Fortress


Wings of Glory

Trevor's Cape Wars game

Saturday, 2 January 2016

The Battle of Kolin

Steve M organised a big bash for our New Year game at the Polly..a refight of the Battle of Kolin, using his own cast and painted traditional semi-flat Seven Years War figures as described over on his blog.. today the Prussians were commanded by Greg, Trev and Rich, whilst Quint and myself took the Austrians, assisted by the Austrian umpire (Steve).. we were using 'King of the Battlefield' rules, with which most of us were fairly unfamiliar.. we were assured that they were fast and bloody.. as it turned out, a lot more saving of hits than is apparently the norm took place.

I won't go into too much detail as I'm knackered (!) , but it was a great game, lots of fun and always a pleasure to take part in a big one like this... just wanted to get some pictures up.

Steve took lots with his camera, so hopefully he'll have them posted soon. As ever I was using my phone, so not so great pictures, but hopefully capture a feel of it here..

Not sure who won.. that was down to classic wargamers debate in the end, as the Prussians were still pushing on the ridge, but the Austrians still had a large uncommitted reserve. I suspect that Frederick's actual defeat may have been repeated had we played on to the evening!

Greg and Trev decide on tactics, much to Quint's amusement

The huge cavalry melee on the Prussian left about to start

And the ArchDuke is still tickled..

The Austrian centre

Austrian cavalry feeling rather misplaced

French, er Austrian, er Spanish... our side anyway!

The Austrian left flank brace for successive cavalry charges

Austrian right, reserves moving up

Prussians put pressure on the ridge, but are challenged by Cuirassiers

The Prussian centre

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Albamorious ventures into the frozen city.. Frostgrave action!

On Tuesday James made a trip over to the Polly and we had a very enjoyable game of Frostgrave. Only my second go at it after the recent club night, and I was bringing a Level 0 warband.. Albamorious the Sigilist, up against his rather more experienced level 8 warband based on 'Slaine'. (Witch)

James was very chivalrous and didn't completely wipe out my band, although I suspect that would have been quite possible.. perhaps only the odd natural 20 would have made a difference. As it was, my warband had a good blooding and got away with a couple of treasures.

Helga bravely hiding in the shadows


I do enjoy games that give you a narrative, and Frostgrave does deliver that.. in our game highlights included a Ranger being irritated by 'Furious Quill' for a turn, then shaking it off and placing an arrow between the eyes of Ulfric, the apprentice who had cast it! Around the ranger, James' bear was swatting off zombies and our foot soldiers were laying into each other.

Demon hot on the chase!
The highlight story of the game involved a demon that James' apprentice had released, chasing down one of my child thieves who was perched on a pillar with a treasure. Albamorious cast a 'wall' spell to delay it's progress, the boy managed to jump into an adjacent window, with the demon hot on his heels.. Albamorious cast another wall directly infront of the demon, and as it turned on him, tickled it with another Furious Quill before dispatching it with a blow from his staff! (The child, meanwhile, got away with his treasure). 

Stay back!

Great fun. 

Albamorious finally stops the demon
Unfortunately my phone pictures aren't great. Really must remember to take my camera to the club!

On a side note.. elsewhere in the room.. haven't seen one of these used for a while. (obviously just for deployment - they did talk to each other!)