Saturday, December 29, 2012

Kickstarters Out and Pulp Alley

We have been really busy stamping and mailing everyone's kickstarter contributions out and you all should see them by the second week of the new year.  If for some reason you do not get your kickstarter package in the mail by then please contact me and I will make all haste to ensure you do get it.

We do not have the cousins sculpted yet and the third and fourth books are scheduled for next year.


In other gaming news Pulp Alley has been released!  This is a game featuring two-fisted combat that I had the honor of helping write and edit.  Check it out.  Who knows, maybe there'll be an expansion for ICFBTS using the PA rulesystem!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Lord of the Rings - WarEngine Style

Yesterday, I got to catch up with my good friend Ray Becker at his house.  We spent the entire day playing games, watching Lord of the Rings - Fellowship of the Ring (Extended Cut) and talking about gaming.  It was a blast!  He also gave me a chance to pick up some Todd McFarlane Dragons I had sold him that he was no longer using and we're working on a deal for the stargate stuff which I am currently borrowing back. Anyway want to come play Stargate miniatures at my house Sunday?

We spent about an hour catching up which I very much enjoyed because Ray is like a brother to me and I do not get a chance to see him often enough.  After a bit of chatting it was time for the gaming to begin!  Now I have always really liked Warengine ever since I was introduced to the system by Ray. This is the Shockforce game engine that was created by programmer Aaron Overton.  The system is an easy build system that can quite literally be used for any type of skirmish and with some slight modification to the game could easily be used for massed combat.

To give you some idea of the genres I have used for Warengine - Pulp (Glogo Island by Banana Tyrant), Vietnam, Modern, Cold War, Colonial Africa, Colonial Sudan, Aliens, Predators, Starwars, Lord of the Rings, Cthulhu, Zombies.  Ray has also used the system for Shockforce (it's original design), Starship Troopers, Civil War, 40K, Warhammer and generic fantasy.  The system really is that versatile   Now with the versatility comes some sticking points such as a maximum of five dice can be kept and a maximum of ten dice may be rolled.  The system is very simple, however, and I have grown to care more for simple systems than the more complex ones.

Our game was a recreation of the Mines of Moria scenario from The Fellowship movie.  Ray has perfected this scenario he runs at conventions and over the years I have been lucky to have played it several times.  I got the Fellowship (Gandalf the Gray, Strider, Pippin, Merry, Frodo, Gimli and Sam) and he took the goblins/orcs a goblin leader and he brought a cave troll.  The way Ray runs it is that he gives the goblin player 2d6 goblins per turn until he runs out of goblins.  He moves them in as a unit each turn until the room is filled with goblins and the Cave Troll.  The first round had only three goblins enter such is the fickle fate of dice. My Fellowship quickly took care of the goblins but not before they picked on my poor hobbitses.

The second round had more goblins enter the fight and I used Gandalf to cast spells of blinding light and searing light that hampered the goblins defenses and boosted my attacks.  The goblins were outmatched but they managed to take down Pippin. The second round ended with Boromir (how could I forget Boromir   taking down a bunch of goblins who were harassing my hobbits.

The third round I lost initiative and had to move first so I did the same trick with Gandalf and the cave troll entered. Ray and I talked about how the troll ran from person to person in the movie and we decided to give it slippery. Legolas also seriously wounded the cave troll above his hero point total (in the game characters have hero points which they can use to increase their die roll after the fact to save their bacon) but the troll was doomed.  I thought this was a sad case and told Ray to give the Troll the slippery edge (which means no attacks of opportunity against him when he moves out of combat) and to give him four wounds. This made the cave troll a beast and he rampaged through Legolas then Borimir to Gimli (who never moved off the tomb) and then finally to Merry sending Merry to meet Pippin.  Legolas and Borimir both took the cave troll down to one hit remaining using their final held action and it was up to the hobbits to pelt the cave troll with stones.

The final round had Stryder charges the cave troll and using his four attacks with his sword he slaughtered the beast.  Legolas took out five goblins by himself but was felled by goblin archers (Legolas taken out by bow fire??!?!) when I rolled a four on my save against an eight attack (such is the fickle finger of dice fate).  The final game ended with a Fellowship victory but sadly Saruman forces were never destroyed because Merry and Pippin never met Treebeard.

We then watched Lord of the Rings and played Blood Bowl on the X Box.

Next Thursday afternoon we will be playing a bigger battle of Lord of the Rings at my house and maybe something else using the Warengine rules.  Come on by if you are in the neighborhood!

"They brought a cave troll!"

Cave troll attacks the Fellowship

Stryder defeats the troll

Legolas felled by goblin archers

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Super Quick Post - Pirates Ship

Merry Christmas! A really quick super fast post today.  One of the presents I got my son was the Pirates of the Caribbean Black Pearl.  Now any PoTC affectionado knows that this is the main ship of the first movie (and subsequent movies).  It is the infamous ship of Capt Jack Sparrow.  What struck me as interesting as I opened the box for my son was the size of the ship.  An added benefit was that the ship already comes rigged and has a flat bottom useful for pushing across the carpet (or game table) :)

This got me to quickly thinking about what I could do to slightly modify it for use in 28mm games.  As some of you may know we are working on a pirate ship game called Blackflags that literally spans time of sea faring piracy.  These ships would make quick and cheap alternatives to purchasing model kits for the playtesting of the game. I plan on picking a few of these ships up before the end of the season if they are still on sale!  I hope you had a great one! I am off to play pirates with my son!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Microarmor Saturday

Saturday December 15th I hosted a very large game of microarmor at my house.  As I was hosting I thought it only proper to go ahead and setup the table in advance for the game.  I have always been a fan of terrain, after all how many battles were really fought in an empty field?  Do you really think that those ACW and AWI battlefields you visit were filled with only flowers?  Most of them were filled with shrubs, trees and maybe even buildings!  The place where someone choses to fight is as important as how they chose to fight.  All that to say that I setup a table using my GeoHex terrain as a European country hilly stretch complete with sleepy villages.

The group was large – Chris, Sgt. John Burford (LRRPs in Action and LRRPs Team Leader author fame), Mick, Andy, Pop and myself.  Although I was hosting the game the specifics for the first game were established by Chris and since neither Mick nor Andy had shown up we decided to play without them. 

The first scenario had my pop and me against Chris and John.  I played a Canadian Striker battalion made up of tows and .25mm cannons while dad played with my US Marine LAV and Track division also mostly tows and .25mm cannons.  We were up against Chris’ Striker division and John’s FFL and VBER French.  The game was played using infantry AFVs with a ton of infantry.

The first turn we all took cover in the woods and on hills and as Chris approached my position by the villiage it became apparent that we would be in a stalemate.  The highlight of the game was dad’s charge of the light brigade which ended in disaster for all except one Track as it made it to the nearby villiage to unload its crew of infantry which then started harassing John’s main line up on the hill with tows and other small arms.

The second game (when Mick and Andy arrived) was setup by Mick.  We all got companies of MBTs. Mick and I got M1 Tusks, Chris played with Leopard IIs and Andy played with T80s.  The game was over after a few turns and I was able to hold my own against Mick, taking him out before Chris wiped the table with both Andy and me from his position on the hill.  We played the second game with a simpler set of rules for firing that I really liked.

Most of the day we spent chatting and we could probably have gotten more gaming in but it was still a lot of fun with a great bunch of guys.  Next time I hope to get a little more gaming in than we did this time. to follow...

Friday, December 14, 2012

Dragonlance - The Challange

The heroes have saved Palanthas and have been named as heroes of the realm and knighted as Sir or Lady.  The party was presented with various dragon eggs.  The dragons were supernaturally enhanced to age to young adult within a few short months.  Six months later, the party has a large lodge with its own airship dock, the airship has been upgraded to include a dragon aviary, chapel and workshop and the dragons have bonded to the party. Now we are playing dragonlance steampunk!

This episode on a routine patrol, Shevane, the Silver dragon of Telane spotted two airships flying black flags. Within about twenty minutes the airships had used their tellurian drives to avoid the notice of Palanthas airship patrols.  An ensuing battle with the party and dragons, airships, priman demon bats with tiefling riders and a short skirmish ending in a challenge from Lord Umbrage Darkenfate and his adult red dragon Banedriver - Maurlanth.  The party now prepares to begin attacking the outlying dragonrider patrols of Icereach in anticipation of the upcoming battle at the Gulf of Lost Souls...

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Al Qadim - Game One

The Al Qadim game is off to a great start. We played the first session last Tuesday on a caravan heading from Kara Tur to Gana led by Master Woo.  The party started off either as members if the silk caravan guard or as merchants with the caravan (the choice was different for each player).

I broke the session into four distinct sections.  The first was roleplaying of the party as they moved with the caravan, the second an encounter with ashworm babies at an oasis, the third an ambush in a rocky pass and the fourth evening meal and challange by a Mamaluk.

The best line of the night was Eric when he said as Hassem after shooting at the sand where it moved and it started charging him "My arrow, she come back to me."

Overall everyone played in character and we had a great time.

Battle with Ashworms - The party had to use their skills and their combat abilities in the soft sand.

Mysterous Travelers at Oasis - They never did figure out the strangers angle.

Cave Scorpion gets mauled by giant claw on crit fumble using pf cards.

Roleplaying camp

The Sha'ir turning the sand to glass

The fight with the Mamauk who didn't want to follow the damned genie bloodsthe followed by exile of their surviving member to be traced down by the loregiver priest and just when I thought she was trying to kill him she gives him water skins.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Mission... We Don't Need No Stinkin Mission

Saturday I ran a game of It Came From Beyond the Still using our new miniature line figures from the Hatfields, Blobs and Grays. Initially, I had given everyone missions but the players had their own agendas as I was soon to learn.

I will give you the missions and a brief overview of what took place just so that this is as complete as I can make it, as admittedly I cannot remember everything that took place last weekend. The players were as follows: Eric – Hatfields, Dad –McCoys, Mel – Blobs, Susan – Grays, Me – Revenuers.

The mission that I selected for the game was a combination of Moonshiners All Night and A Midsummer’s Night Skinnydip, both from the second book. The aliens had a joint mission to capture as much DNA as they could and to steal the stills from the hillbillies. The hillbillies had a joint mission to be the first to collect three ingredients for their still to make shine. Separately, each player had their own mission as well with the McCoys trying to find the long lost bones of Confederate General McCoy buried in the graveyard of the Hatfields, the Hatfields trying to find a bottle of shine that they knew the McCoys had stolen, the Grays trying to refuel their spaceship with shine and the Blobs driving in on a garbage truck to steal the trash of the hillbillies. Lastly, Suzy McCoy and Ed Hatfield were making out in the apple orchard and needed to safely return to their respective clans. This scenario called for special rules in that the couple would not shoot at one another or attacks one another and would defend the other if they were fired upon.

Well the missions went out the window right from the start with Mel trying to sneak around Dad’s perimeter and the Hatfields “Having none of that!” blasting at them from round one! The Grays began to probe the local wildlife to mixed success (in this scenario the wildlife fought back) and the McCoys began collecting ingredients for their still. This round pretty much went by the slowest with me explaining the rules to everyone. It seems most people are used to a roll to hit, roll to wound type game and the fact that my game requires only one roll seemed to throw them a bit I think.

The next few rounds had sirens blaring in the distance with the hillbillies warned that revenuers were nearby arresting shiners. The Blobs continued to take on the McCoys with one blob attacking Drunk Bob and sending him running for the chicken coup. Grandpa McCoy came out guns a blazing but shot mostly the woodpile where the blobs were hiding. The garbage driven by blobs truck continued to roll into the area heading straight toward the McCoys house! The Grays started to engage the McCoys blasting at them with green stuff but the McCoys jumped in a truck and sped toward the Grays granting them much deserved rest as the truck slammed into several causing them to take dirt naps. The giant robot meanwhile engaged a grizzly bear and a mountain lion. Meanwhile, the couple snuck to the edge of the orchard and noticed revenuers sneaking around in their car – so Ed decided to shoot at them.

The shooting drew the attention of the McCoys who ganged up on the revenuers and welcomed them with shotgun and rifle blasts of their own. Sheriff McCroy responded with his boys opening up on the McCoys before driving straight into the woods into the cougar. Only to be hit by the heat ray of the gray. For special reasons I decided that this heat ray completely disintegrated the revenuers (car and people in all) so great was the roll made by Susan. This defeated the revenuers and ended the game.

Highlights of the game:
· Cousin Darryl Hatfield tried to hotwire the UFO only to find it was out of gas (Shucks!)
· The McCoys vs. Revenuers
· The Heatray taking out the Revenuers in one shot
· Neuron having a cow following him around after he successfully probed it
· Ma Hatfield and her cleaver versus Neuron using her wiles to get the alien enticed
· Neuron using his telepathy to scare the heck out of Hatfields
· Grays running around probing things!
· Redneck jokes
- Blobs adding new addition to McCoys house!

The last few rounds had everyone engaging everyone else in a bloody stalemate. The Grays won with six of their five DNA samples collected with the McCoys right in second place behind for sheer meaness. Great fun was had by all.