Saturday, February 24, 2024

Crimean Cossacks

As I slowly work my way through the last of Crimean figures, I finished off some 28mm Foundry Cossacks with lances. Nice models.

I experimented some with building up washes to get a nice dark colour that did not absorb all of the light. These turned out okay.

I wonder if the lances need pendants? The command group was nice enough.

Up next: Russian Hussar lancers, some 28mm colonial warriors, and some random Batman villains are all in various stages of painting. 

Saturday, February 17, 2024

Fistful of Lead Batman, Game 3

So, picking up the storyline in this series of linked scenarios, the Joker had destroyed enough of Gotham's communication infrastructure that he was able to kidnap Commission Gordon! Unfortunately, during the dust-up, Joker was seriously injured and had to sit out a game, as did Green Arrow. 

I wanted to see how well the game played with four players as well as use some of my outdoorsy terrain so the scenario is that the Joker's gang has to get Commissioner Gordon from the far corner of the table to the near corner, and then into the Joker's liar. This requires going through Gotham woods, which is bisected by a stream and a marsh. Harlequin and various gangsters start with Commission Gordon. For support, a team of four specialists marches out of the Joker's Lair.

Batman is back from his rest break and comes on the table from the right side with three beat cops. More cops can join him on a die roll at the end of each turn. On the left side of the table, Black Lightening and Batgirl enter. They can be joined by Robin and Black Canary on a die roll. I played each side with a separate hand of cards.

Turn 1 sees mostly movement on the far side of the board, as Harlequin grabs Commission Gordon and hauls ass. Penguin, Catwoman, Riddler, and Poison Ivy advance, only to run into Batman. A Batarang takes Poison Ivy out on the first turn!

Turn 2 sees Riddler try to confuse Batman and fail, only to get hit twice by batarangs and pick up two shock markers for the trouble. This effectively suppressed the Riddler. There was more frantic movement on the far side of the table as Batgirl and Black Lightening tried to control the ford over the stream.

Turn 3 saw reinforcements begin arriving for Batman and a huge bunch of melees. Catwoman took a beating at the hands of a bunch of cops before Penguin waded in with his umbrella sword and thinned the cops out. Riddler got further suppressed.

Meanwhile, back on the far side, Black Lightening and Batgirl turn to face a bunch of gangsters while Harlequin sneaks past them with the Commissioner. Robin arrives on the far edge of the board.

Turn 4 was rough for Team Joker. Penguin called in some thugs for help but was promptly KOed by Batman in melee. Riddler and Catwoman are also so beat up as to be useless.

Mid-board, Batgirl took out some thugs only to be gunned down by some gangsters. Harlequin snuck across the river into some willows with the Commissioner, and Black Lightening left Batgirl to follow Harlequin.

Turn 5 saw Harlequin sprint across some open ground before Black Lightening could react and got the Commissioner into some trees. Black Lightening blasted her and ended up shocking her and Commissioner Gordon! Catwoman routed, Riddler got KOed, and Batman rushed into the melee. A beat cop ran to try and block Harlequin's exit. On the far side of the Board, Robin got wounded and Black Canary finally arrived.

Turn 6 saw Harlequin get within inches of the board edge, slowed by the shock she'd picked up. The beat cop plowed into her and KOed her, rescuing Commissioner Gordon!

Batman, maybe still suffering from his past wounds, got beat in melee and was wounded.

And, in the middle of the board, Black Canary took out a mob boss while Robin ran out of batarangs. Black Lightening also ran out of juice, but the fight had largely gone out of the remaining mobsters and they bolted.

At the end of the game, Team Bats scored 10 points (for a total of 17 so far) while Team Joker picked up 4 points (for a total of 14 so far). Both teams had a lot of figures injured who will need to test to see if they are available for the last fight, deep inside Joker's lair (giving me a chance to haul out my dungeon terrain).

Overall, the game played fine with four players (perhaps even more interesting because the action shifted back and forth and more special cards came up). Batman might be a touch too powerful with his shooting and I wonder if the damage done by batarangs need to be downgraded to shock only?

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Fistful of Lead Batman, Game 2

Alright, so when we last left our heroes, the Joker and his gang had robbed a bank, making off with a bunch of loot to financs who knows what scheme. In the process, Batman, Joker, and Harlequin had all been injured enough to have to roll for adverse outcomes at the end of the game (this is a part of the Fistful of Lead campaign rules).

Joker and Harlequin were both fine and available for this game. Batman, though was out for a game, suffered a permanent wound reduction of 1, and slowed movement! So, for the second game, I pulled together four specialists (the B team) to contest Joker, Harlequin, and a bunch of goon. The baddies were busy around the Gotham stockyards, destroying phone booths to cripple Gotham's PD's ability to respond to their evil plan. 

Teams got points for phones booths destroyed/saved at the end of the game plus points for leaders and specialists knocked out. Gotham phone booths are built tough and could be destroyed by melee or bombs, fight with 1d10, and take three wounds. Baddies deployed first, coming in along the right side of board, Team Bats can come in from either side road but opted to all come in on the far side, giving Harlequin an easy run at one phone booth but thickening up the defences of the other two.

Turn 1 saw mostly movement-to-contact stuff. Batgirl and Robin slipped up the far side of the board to confront Joker. Black Lightening moved to protect the phone booth, and Green Arrow took up a sniper position on top of a tractor trailer. 

On turn 2, Joker got the jump and popped out from behind a dumpster to unload his submachine gun at Batgirl! She managed to dance away but took a shaken marker. She and Robin then retaliated with a barrage of Batarangs, knocking Joker out of the game!

Meanwhile, out of the street, Joker's enforcer KOed the first phone booth and a bunch of punks blocked Black Lightning's path to the enforcer. Green Arrow did nothing useful. This would be a theme and in stark contrast to his big role last game.

Black Lightening made quick work of the punks in his way. Out of frame, Harlequin and her goons got closer to their phone booth.

On turn 3, Green Arrow saw the far side of the board was under control and leapt up on a building to take Harlequin under fire. She threw a bomb and blew up the second phone booth on her first try! Back on the far side of the board, there was some inconsequential fisticuffs and redeployment to protect the last phone booth.

Turn four saw Green Arrow wound Harlequin who replied ineffective and ran out of bombs.

A brave punk managed to lock up Black Lightening and the Joker's enforcer rushed towards the last phone booth. Robin missed with his last Batarang while Batgirl lagged behind the fight with her shaken marker.

Turn 5 opened with Harlequin machine gunning Green Arrow and taking him out of action! Her goons then ran towards the last phone booth.

On the far side, the enforcer rushed back to KO Black Lightening! Robin jumped down and into combat (and bad match-up for him, even with some extra card help) and traded wounds with the Enforcer.

Turn six saw Robin knock out the Enforcer. Harlequin rushed to the phone booth, but Batgirl knocked out a punk and then Bataranged Harly out of the game!

At this point, it was Batgirl and Robin against three punks. Batgirl ran out of Batrangs and the punks gave them a turn's trouble. But, eventually, they were able to knock two punks out and drive the third off. 

At the end of the game, Team Bats picked up 6 victory points (giving them a total of 7) but will need to roll for the fates of Black Lightening and Green Arrow. Team Joker got 6 points as well (for a total of 10). They'll need to roll agains for the Joker and Harlequin. I'm not nothing to role of regular characters. They are generic enough to just be replaced from game to game.

I'm pretty sure this game system could easily take four players. I played both this and the last game in about 60 minutes each. I may try the next game with two sets of teams on each side. Probably an outdoor adventure for a change of pace (and to get some different terrain on the table).

Saturday, February 3, 2024

Fistful of Lead Batman

A month or so back, Bruce introduced me to Fistful of Lead, a quickly set of rules for the old west. We had a very good time with the rules and I wondered if they could be adapted to low-powered superheroes. I finally got around to buying the core rule book as a pdf from Wiley Games and then pointed out some character cards (I tried to upload them, but blogger freaked out).

I use the bank robbery scenario in the book and pointed up two five-person teams. The Joker had Harlequin, some regulars, some grunts and also picked up two more regulars as a result of a team trait. He had to get five bags of loot off the far table edge. 

Opposing him were Batman and Green Arrow and some Gotham cops. These teams were pretty balanced and included a leader, a specialist, and some regulars. I adapt the jumping rules to allow leaping and climbing for the leaders and specialists that approximated what happens in comic books and away I went.

Turn One saw the Joker try to overload one side of the board while sending Harlequin to tie up Batman on the other. Green Arrow managed to wing one of the bad guys as he ran along the top of the building with a bag of dosh.

Meanwhile, down on the street, a bunch of grunts tangled with a beat cop who knocked one out. Melee is very bloody and high stakes.

Batman swooped off the water tower and then threw a beatarang at Harlequin, KOing her (pretty lucky shot, although Batman is a bad-ass character).

On turn two, the street fight continued and the Joker ran out, hoping to slip past. Green Arrow took him out with a single shot! I figured the game was over for the bad guys with both of their big players out.

Meanwhile here comes Bats through the park to bail Gotham's finest out of a brawl they were losing.

On turn three, Bats jumps in and attempts to melee three baddies.

He immediately gets his ass handed to him and is down. Suddenly, things are looking better for team Joker.

One turn four, one of Joker's henchman recovers automatically, jumps up, empties a Thompson drum into a patrol sergeant, and then scarpers with two bags of loot towards the board edge. There was no way for the good guys to catch him so Batman concentrated on bottling up the remaining baddies and hope to grind-out a 3-2 win.

Meanwhile, back on the ranch, Batman recovered while Gotham coppers kick the hell out of the Joker's street punks. Over on the far right side of the board, a shocked gangster has two bags of loot and Green Arrow misses an easy shot. The gangster decides to just run for it.

On turn five, the gangster barrels out of the alley, KOs a beat cop (!), and then gets into a foot race with Batman, Both are pretty beat up, so it is slow going. Green Arrow moves to get a better angle.

Green Arrow misses, the gangster fends off a wounded Batman, and then ducks into an alley.

The game ends with him out running Batman and Team Joker getting off the table with four of the five bags of loot. I still need to roll what happened to all the casualties.

Overall, this worked well. The game was done in an hour (so you could play two games in a night easily) even with me learning the rules and having to look stuff up. Things were dramatic. The board was  bit big at 4x4 feet. But the game could also have easily accommodated two more players (each playing a team of specialists (e.g., Robin, Batgirl, Black Lightening, and Black Canary).