Saturday, February 16, 2019

Ronin and Tribal

I dropped in on Bruce Tuesday night for some samurai gaming. hH had made some new foam-core and paper terrain to go along with the minis he painted.


First up, we tried Ronin from Osprey. This is a skirmish game with 5-12 minis per side. The objective was to control the bridge. Set up offered some opportunity for fun, with the attacker influencing defending figure positions (can't recall exact details).


Basic game is initiative, move/shoot, melee, and morale/administrivia. The combat mechanics offer some interesting ideas (shifting initiative, some pre-planning of attacks and defense through action selection, the opportunity to trade number of attacks for more effective attacks).

Combat is fixed combat factors (different calculation for attacker and defender) plus die rolls with difference equating to damage. The mods on the QRS were initially fiddly but, after a few rounds, they were memorized so that issue dropped away.


Our game saw the defenders picked apart and things coming down to a fight between two samurai on the bridge. It was pretty dramatic!

Then we switched systems to Tribal where two teams compete to gain the most honour points. You get honour for combat, kills, and victory point captures. This creates a meta-game that drives tabletop strategy.

Typical turn sequence is initiative then alternating moves with combat resolved as contact happens. The interesting mechanic is that it is all done with playing cards. Each unit is assigned a card at the beginning from a randomly drawn hand. If the unit combats that turn, the assigned card is the first card played in combat (so you need to think about where contact is going to be that turn).


Assuming the unit survives the first card comparison, then players can play cards from randomly drawn combat hands (black is attack and red and defence) with card value determining winner (no dice in combat).

This sounds clunky but creates an interesting microgame of hard decisions in combat that was quite engaging (especially as units got ground down and there were fewer cards to choose from).

Overall, I enjoyed Tribal more than Ronin, but both were fun and fine games. I think we tied in Tribal when we tallied honour points at the end (again, recollection is shaky--it was fun though).

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Sand troopers and heroes

A few more Star Wars figures were finished up this week.


First up are four sand troopers from an expansion. Two got sand bases and two got indoor bases.


There were also two heroes on rubble bases. A tech lady and a dude with a big gun.


Painting was to the images on the cards.


Up next: More figures, including some Gamorrean guards and some Storm troopers with jet packs (?).

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Guilds of Cadwallon and BSG

We had five guys out at the club this week, braving a nasty cold spell (-30C) to play two games (store and streets were deserted).


Terry brought out the Guilds of Cadwallon, a worker placement game. I was leery at first (many worker placement board games require too much mental effort for me) but enjoyed myself so much that I forgot to take pictures! I would definitely play again.

Mechanics are basically place workers to capture tiles which have intrinsic point value plus may contribute to your secret mission (more points). We played two rounds--probably needs to be three rounds. To everyone's surprise (including mine), I won. Yay, dumb luck.


Chen then hosted a game of Battlestar Galactica: Starship Battles. The game looks a lot like X-Wing but I thought the basic mechanics were more akin to Wings of War. We played the base rules (cinematic flight) but the game allows for Newtonian flight (i.e., facing does not equal direction of travel). Above are most of the components you need to play.


We played two raiders versus two vipers (ignore the hex grid--not used for game). Vipers turn better; raiders are tougher. Hey, where's my wing man, Taylor!?!?!?


Oh, there he is. Hurry up, dude!


Mechanics are simultaneous plotting by selecting maneuver cards and speed, then movement, then combat. Combat by dice roll (minor mods for range), damage by chit draw.

The maneuver cards are a touch clunky (i.e., too many cards in hand to select among, not enough room on board to place them in the tight dog fights caused by short shooting ranges). But no mechanic is perfect and they do allow for a booster option and G-limits in the basic game and seem to have extra info for the advance flight game.


Our game saw the vipers out maneuver the raiders. But the raiders managed to kill a viper and then it became a nasty knife fight (raiders can fly backwards?!!?) followed by the last viper cutting and running (successfully).


Secret damage chit draws was interesting. I took two hits early on and was suddenly 11/14 damage. Chen took eight (EIGHT!) chits and was 14/16 damage ("DIE ALREADY!"). I don't think Terry took any hits (the Force is strong in this one). I'd try this again to see if the Newtonian flight mechanics are workable.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Tusken Raiders!

So I'm about half way through the Imperial Assault commission I took on and I just opened one of the Tatooine expansions. I'm struggling a touch with the heavy storm troopers (did a step out of sequence so now correcting that).


The Tusken Raiders, however, were very nice figures to paint. Great, dynamic poses, and easy to paint: white primer, wash of British uniform brown, detailing, magic dip, and matte sealer.


The hardest part I found was getting a good picture!


My camera kept washing out the tones or having too shallow a depth of field. Anyhow, these look better in person but I think the photos are okay.


Up next: Maybe some gaming at the club and then some more Imperial Assault.

Saturday, February 2, 2019

End of the Cloud City expansion

So I finished off the figures from the Cloud City expansion for Imperial Assault that I'm doing.


There were three more of the guards, but this time on a rubble base. There were also three Ugnaults.


I see that I need to spend a bit more time cleaning up their bases with some black paint (weird how that jumps out in a photo and is invisible when I looked at the figure).


There were also a pair of heroes. I was pretty happy with how the wet-on-wet bending worked with these guys (that is a total crap-shoot, I find).


Up next: Sand people!

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Shapeshifters, Cloud City Guards and pulp vehicles

A job lot of stuff rolled off the production line this week. First up are some more Imperial Assault expansion pack figures for this commission.


These four figures are shape-shifters from the Clone Wars movie. I don't really recall this film, but what I do remember (from playing Lego Wii Star Wars with the kid) is these shapeshifters have something to do with how Kenobi gets to the Boba Fett factory with the weird long-necked ladies.


Beyond the skin colour (green-yellow), there is no canonical look for these figures, so I went with bright and varied clothes and on two different bases. Apparently they can shape-shift their clothes as well so who knows what they might actually wear when going out to the bar or getting groceries.


I'm pretty happy with the faces (above)--this seems to match the images I could find. Then onto the Cloud City pack with some of the guards.


I'm pretty happy with these guys. Simple uniform, simple bases, nicely brought out with some washes.


I have more of these guys plus some ugnaughts and heroes drying before moving onto a Tatooine expansion. To break things up, I painted a few HO-scale vehicles I picked up at a flea market to populate the streets of Gotham.


This die-cast school bus had a crazy Monopoly tie-in paint job (???) so I had to start again. Good enough (my Gotham layout is pretty gritty) and it fits in with the HO-scale stuff I have.


I also picked up an low-rider car. It is a touch too big scale-wise but I'm not that fussy.


Next up is more Star Wars plus maybe some additional resin and 3-D printed terrain for Gotham.

Saturday, January 26, 2019

More Heart of the Empire figures

I finished a few more figures from the Heart of the Empire expansion for Imperial Assault.


This week, I have two sentry droids on the rubble basing.


They are backed up by some form of chicken-walker.


Up next: More Imperial Assault figures: Some shape-shifters and then maybe some guards from the Cloud City expansion.