Bruce hosted our annual Remembrance Day game this past weekend, inaugurating his new gaming room and table. To accommodate Andy, me, Chen, Richard, Scott and Terry, Bruce retreaded an old game (Pony Ways), cleaning up the mechanics and using a variant of Lion Rampant for the combat mechanics.
The setting is the old west, with the players assuming the roll of the US Cavalry trying to keep the settlers safe. Each turn, a card is drawn that triggers a random event (mostly raiding war bands but also stage coaches, wagon trains, cattle drives, banditos, etc) that the players must manage. The game is scored based on points and at the beginning of each turn, the players play the game (e.g. one war bands) before taking their turns. The game ran 30 turns.
Early on, the mining camp as sacked by some locals and the miners forced to flee.
The eventually joined up with Richard's troops which had convinced some settlers to accompany them back to the safety of the fort.
Sergeant Something-or-other arrived but succumbed to bad dice rolls before using his special power to help the players.
Richard's force was harassed by war bands as it moved across the table. Then the railroad arrived (major points of the rail crew survives long enough to get the railway to town).
Andy moved his cavalry up to provide a rearguard for Richard's wagon train. This was a short-lived effort to stem the tide of war bands and Andy was left unit-less for awhile thereafter.
The chuckwagon made it town (triggering a gun fight that I wasn't paying attention to) but then it had to ride to the church to figure out its exist point. Of course it was ambushed getting through the pass.
I managed to bring in some more settlers to the fort to up our victory point total. At this point, it felt like we had the game in hand. And then the war drums stopped and there was a huge surge of war bands all entering the table at once.
Must of the rest of the game looked like this as the locals overwhelmed unit after unit, grinding down our overall score.
We spent a lot of time replenishing our troops in the fort and sallying out to try and save what we could.
At one point, the Hole in the Wall game arrived, chased by a posse. They ran through a seemingly endless horde of war bands. Richard was trying desperately to get a cattle drive moving, but faced a slaw of problems, including raids. Terry's troop and my own raiders were over come by Indians while Scott continued an amazing run of luck, losing only one man and shooting us out of trouble repeatedly.
In the end, we scored a -6 result (hard to know what that means--Bruce is still calibrating the game), which looked like a loss. Overall, a fun, co-op game with lots of figures and terrain. I wonder what the effect of moving the fort from the end of the short side of the board to the middle of the long side of the board (on the side) would be?