Wednesday, October 30, 2013

5150 Space Combat

Bruce hosted a game of 5150 (by Two Hour Wargames) last night wherein the brave defenders of Earth (below) had to hold off an invasion force. Alas, the Earthling's commander appears to have been selected for his good looks, rather than his tactical abilities..

The invasion force was of higher class, but lower quality, ships and the basically steamrollered the defenders. Things started badly when I launched my fighters prematurely. Bruce then cleaned out most of my fighters and missile ships before they got in range. The subsequent gunfire was a bit one-sided.

A neat mechanic for moving asteroids and nebula. And towards the end we started to see some interesting things with the damage tables (ships losing morale and bugging out). But it was a lot of dice rolling. Overall, a decent game but Full Thrust is more engaging--more complex movement decisions and slicker combat mechanics. Below you can see the Earthlings fleeing to regroup.

Up next: Some 1/72 Indians elephants are almost finished basing. And I have a rush job on some 15mm  Panthers for a FoW tourney next weekend! Plus we have club on Tuesday night.

Monday, October 28, 2013


A snowy weekend found me back at the painting bench with more Riel Rebellion types underway. I added some firepower for our American cousins with three cannons (a fourth awaits basing). These are figures from an old game.

Apologies for the still-soft photos. I'm getting better with my borrowed camera but it is a tricky thing to manipulate. Below are some samples of the 28 additional Canadians I painted. Most I painted as NWMP but I did a couple of units in khaki. These could be green militia units sent as reinforcements (different uniforms means easier differentiation on the table).

Up next: I have a game scheduled with Bruce tomorrow night. On the painting bench are some 1/72-scale Indian elephants that I hope to finish tonight. Following them are 48 foot troops to flesh out the rest of the Indian army. Then maybe some ancient Germans.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Europe Engulfed

Bruce picked up a copy of GMT's Europe Engulfed recently and he put on the Barbarosa scenario last night. We managed to get through one year of the war and come to conclusion in about 2 hours.

Above is pretty close to the set-up (Germans have advanced in the north, I think). The most innovative mechanic are the "break through" chits you can buy, which basically allow you to break the rules in many instances. For example, if you win a combat, you play a break through chit and move again (and again and again).

The Germans had a lot of trouble in the south--I just could not roll worth crap for the first 90 minutes! It did tie up a lot of his divisions though. And my dice came around right at the gates of Moscow.

Bruce also used the national conscription mechanic to massively build up his troops and eventually he built a stable front (below). Most German blocks are off board in the picture below (to facilitate winter rebuilding!). Bruce likely should have counter attacked but chose to build instead--a hard call on the first time through the game.

Come spring, I then punched through to Moscow in the north and Stalingrad in the south using focused Panzer attacks. Bruce still held Leningrad but that was just a matter of time so we called it. he might have been able to come back, but the industrial damage liked permanently shifted the momentum.

Overall, a pretty slick game. Basically you play a national leader, moving armies. The mechanics require you to manage divisions, which is a bit more detail than I like, but I'm likely odd-man out on that preference. Playing the entire game (east, west and south) would be a multi-day undertaking, I think. It would also be slow as you need to fiddle with rebuilding divisions and rolling buckets and buckets of dice (although there is a 3d6 combat option).

But the effort might well be worth it. Bruce indicates there are lots of political rules to script the war some and retain the historical nature of the conflict. Meh? I dunno. I can't see spending that kind of time these days when I could just play Axis and Allies or something online. But I'd certainly give this another whirl--maybe playing the western scenario.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

New 1/72-scale Indians

Awhile back, Dave and I did a "my junk for your junk" trade and I ended up with a mix of 1/72-scale Indians and Celts. The Indians are HaT and looked intriguing enough that I picked up a few more boxes on clearance to flesh out a CCA battle and then bolster some successor armies.

There were seven foot (I see a bowman snuck into this picture). Knowing nothing about ancient Indians, I guessed at a lot of stuff. There were also four bowmen (most below) and enough extras for a command base. The banner is kind of lame--I just didn't have the energy to be creative.

There were two chariots. I'm pretty unimpressed with my work on these. They'll do, and all, but not my best work. Just kind of uninspiring. This happens!

The cavalry turned out better. I am using the guys holding umbrella as standard bearers--I may change this if I get a second wind. The parasols make no sense--I just needed a quick way to denote some commanders.

The cavalry had nice animation. Apologies for the soft photos (still struggling with the new camera) but I managed to get a sharp picture below. Nice sculpts!

Up next: Some 1/72-scale reinforcements for the NWMP are primed and awaiting paint. Then maybe some more Indians. Bruce has also offered to run a game of Europe Engulfed on Tuesday.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

EWG Club Night October 15

We had 10 guys out at the club last night with three games running. I hosted Scott in a NWMP game using the For Honor and Glory rules (DBA activation and CCA-style movement and combat). The scenario was that a NWMP patrol was ambushed on the way to Fort Whoop-Up by some locals.

As the locals were of the hit-and-fade, they needed some big hitters to even out the odds so look who decided to cross the border to help out. tsk, tsk.

We played three games, with the NWMP supply convoy winning twice and the indians/cavalry team winning once. You can see a lone gatling gun trying to pick off some fellows (wisely) hiding in the woods. The rules seemed to work s now I'll paint up a few troops and maybe think through a more historical scenario.

It took awhile to master the use of the indians, but Scott eventually managed to win with them by throwing out a pair of pincers, splitting my force and then using hit better activation to whittle down my units through volume of fire. Below you can see one attempt at flanking in the foreground.

Dan and Neil played a game of Battlelore.

Dave hosted Andy, Bruce and Jonathan in a game of Memoir '44 (it was a hex-themed night apparently).

 And Terry hosted Gord and Chen in a game of Zombicide.

Up next: I have some 1/72-scale ancient Indian cavalry and chariots that are block painted. Now onto the detailing! Maybe this weekend if the weather turns sour.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

1/72 NWMP Gatling, Crew and Command

On Tuesday I'm putting on a NWMP game at the club so I've needed to push a few more troops through the basing process. This is one fourth of a box of HaT 1/72 Gatling Guns (the rest are done--no point repeating the same images). From what I can tell, four Gatling guns are likely more than in the entire campaign, but what the heck.

I've mounted two of the crew separately and two as a command base. Apologies for the fuzzy pictures. My camera has died and I'm using my daughter's camera. Still some things to figure out with the various functions and lighting to get crisp shots!

Up next: The club is Tuesday night and (as soon as it warms up outside) I will be spray priming some 1/72 ancient Indian cavalry and chariots (and a few foot) I picked up in a trade with Dave. I think these are all HaT figures and they assembled quite nicely. Wow, spears thin enough to actually fit through the hole in the ring hand--what will manufacturers think of next (I'm talking to you Strelets).

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

October 1 club night

We had six  guys out on a cold and rainy Tuesday for club night. Scott brought out a game of CCA that pitted the Spartans (orange) against the Greeks (blue). We played three times with the Spartans achieving a historical victory each time.

Truly the scenario favours them. The Greeks have mostly light troops and their strategy has to be one of shoot, fall back and pick off while the Spartans lumber forward with slow troops and a poor deployment. But I think you'd be hard pressed to win with the Greeks unless you were really lucky.

Dave hosted Chris, Terry and Andy in a game of Sings of Blades and Heros, Tolkien style. A Balin's Tomb grab the treasure kind of scrap between his newly painted dwarves and goblins. The mechanics looks pretty slick (I've always liked Ganesh's die rolling system) and I left before it was decided who would indeed take what dose of a popular pre-menstrual symptom drug.

Up next: I have some 1/72-scale gatling guns and crews underway. After than, perhaps some more 1/72 ancients? I see GMT is promising to ship the reprints of CCA Expansions 2 and 3 mid-winter so I need to finish out the armies.