Thursday, 29 July 2021
Monday, 26 July 2021
As part of their fundraising activities to raise money for disabled facilities at their new venue, Bristol Independent Gaming ran a 'Demo Day' yesterday to introduce local gamers to a plethora of new games and systems. I was "volunteered" to run some games of Futbowel...
For those of you unfamiliar with the game it is a fantasy football one but, unlike others, actually involves the kicking of a ball with a foot and not holding an egg with your hands (sometimes in armour). The first edition came out in 2007 and featured Orc 'civilian' futbowel teams. 2016 saw a second edition arrive set in the Panzerfäuste world and inspired by the WWI Christmas Truce games, games played between Orcs and Dwarves in No Man's Land.
The second edition rules are a complete re-write and a completely playing card driven game. Consequently it moves along a cracking pace, can be pretty random and on occasion quite brutal with moving players sometimes blown up by unexploded bombs and others executed by firing squad for committing bad fouls.
I managed to get through four games yesterday and a lot of fun was had, all being pretty close won affairs with the odd goal in it. Nine players were shot for fouling their opponents and three Dwarves blown up by UXB's. It was interesting that the female gamers had a better grasp of tactics, passing the ball and moving miniatures up to support, whilst most of the men would charge one player down the pitch in the hope of scoring a solo goal. You can guess which approach was more successful! :D
The teams were the old Hysterical Games figures, 3D printed especially for the game and painted up by me last week.
I am hoping the game and figures will be available for purchase again very soon as it is a lot of fun and an ideal beer & pretzels game, made even better if consuming alcohol whilst playing!
Saturday, 24 July 2021
Thursday, 22 July 2021
After my initial Sharp Practice games using the attack column against Andy I began to ponder how having two attack columns would work... I have pencilled out an 85 point list but it does seem a bit light on the command front, however tonight Andy and I are planning to play a 110 point doubles game against Phil and Jenny so I had the excuse to paint up some more Perry Miniatures Kingdom of Italy Fucilieri.
I added one more group to my unit of three Fucilieri 4° Fanteria di Linea giving me a nice attack column of four groups in campaign dress...
With half a thought towards other projects I could use my KOI troops for (who said Black Powder?!) I decided that 36 fusiliers for the 4th Line was enough and decided to paint my next two groups up as Fucilieri of the 5° Fanteria di Linea who have red facings and green collars.Coscritti Fucilieri 4° Fanteria di Linea and quickly repainted the facings to match the 5° Fanteria di Linea so I have a slightly neater attack column of the 5th Line.
Monday, 19 July 2021
Although you were only supposed to pick five games that made you the gamer that you are today I couldn't help but pick a sixth for an 'honourable mention'...
Sunday, 18 July 2021
It might seem a bit egotistical to pick a game that I wrote as one of my five but honestly it's not a case of me massaging my big head! :D
The idea of historo-fantasy was not new when Flintloque came around, there had been an excellent article in Games Review Monthly magazine that extrapolated the Warhammer world into the Malburian period using the recently released Citadel Marlburian figures as Elves and Empire with 40K Grots having green stuff tricorns added. That idea was filed away in the back of my head as a "one day" possible project but I was surprised when (doing miniatures reviews for Games Master International) a small parcel turned up from Alternative Armies which comprised of an Orc in a Napoleonic British uniform and a Dwarf in a Prussian Landwehr one.
A quick phone call to (then) Alternative Armies proprietor Mac led to me writing up a set of rules (oddly based on Iron Cow its genesis coming from Battles with Micro-tanks) using the 20 year old percentile firing system! For a couple of years Flintloque burned brightly and grew a fervent fanbase. Unfortunately economic pressures saw the company sold on (and later on again) and whilst Flintloque and Alternative Armies technically still exist it is not what it was for that brief moment in the mid-nineties.
Given the derivative nature of its rules I am not including Flintloque because of the rules system, even though it oddly enough worked well and made for a fun skirmish game. No, it is the combination of fantasy and historical elements in the background which has influenced much of my hobby time since 1995 and my strange fascination in dressing Orcs and Dwarves up in historical military uniforms from through the ages...
Saturday, 17 July 2021
From fantasy it was a small step to boldly go into SF wargaming though after playing one game of Warhammer 40,000 I wasn't impressed with the rules although I bought far too many 40K figures! :D Simon and I did have a traditional annual pre-Xmas game of the GW/FASA Star Trek III: Starship Combat Game but whilst we liked the background the game itself didn't inspire repeated play. It was not until 1991 that I discovered a small A5 photocopied set of spaceship combat rules that within one year was re-released as an A4 second edition with a full colour cover...
Friday, 16 July 2021
Like every other wargamer who loved reading The Lord of the Rings the release of Warhammer by Citadel Miniatures in 1983 was an exciting event however it was the release of the 2nd edition a year later that had a bigger impact on me and my gaming...
Focussing more on the mass battle and less on the role-playing (as in the first edition) I loved playing Warhammer in the mid-eighties. It was huge fun, you rolled lots of dice and there were no constraints on what you toys you could or could not play with.
With Graham moving out of the area, Warhammer replaced WW2 for Simon and myself with him amassing a Dwarf army based around the wonderful Fantasy Tribe Dwarves and me a Goblinoid one using the Fantasy Tribe Orcs and Goblins, plus the original Citadel Lord of the Rings line. There were no points based army lists, no restrictions on what you could use. You bought something, you painted it, you played with it. End of.
The contrast with the complexity of historical rules at this time could not be more marked and whilst I bought WRG and Newbury Ancients rules to see if I could play a more "grown up" LoTR type game with them I never bothered.
The incorporation of Citadel into GW and the move to the more prescriptive 3rd edition and the 'Beano' annual books saw me drift away from the game but I still have the figures and I still have my 2nd edition box so maybe one day...
Thursday, 15 July 2021
If I had to name just one set of rules that made me the wargamer I am today it most probably would have to be these, not that I expect many people have heard of them or played them...
Wednesday, 14 July 2021
There's an interesting little chain message going around wargamers on Twitter at the moment were, if you are tagged, you list the five games that made you the gamer you are today and tag five other gamers. A bit of fun but it did get me thinking and the old brain cells reminiscing. As you are limited by the number of characters on Twitter I thought I'd post a little more about my choices here...
I can't remember where I picked up this book but it was during my teenage reading frenzy of any book I could get on the subject of wargaming. I do vaguely remember my first wargame against my friend Andy on the floor of my living room using my HO/OO collection of Airfix figures and ROCO tanks and vehicles using (IIRC) some rules from a Donald Featherstone book. That however was a bit of a failure and never repeated and it was Operation Warboard which really launched me into wargaming with me painting up US and German forces and covering a table in railway terrain (including some wonderful plastic one piece hedges) for the first meeting of the Clevedon Comprehensive School Wargames Club in 1980.
Whilst the after school club soon folded due to industrial action by the teachers (seeing them not supporting after school activities) it was really here that my wargames journey began!
Sunday, 4 July 2021
My fourth and final battle of the En Avant II event was against Jim who'd come up from Kent for a weekend of Sharp Practising. In this scenario Jim's British were tasked with escorting Lieutenant Lightswiche of the Royal Engineers ensuring he was able to repair a prototype heliograph in a monks tower overlooking the Valley of the Tres Cojones. My Italians were ordered to stop him!