Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Structures for Zombieville

From last year, here are a couple of structures my brother and I are working on for his Zombieville table. 
As you can see in these before pictures, this church started out as a Christmas village decoration. 
Paint the snow green, touch up the stained glass windows, and you've got a building that isn't quite as seasonal, and can be used in a game with 28mm figures.
There's also this three-level parking garage from an MDF kit. As the top two floors are removable, this structure should make for some interesting battles.
We haven't actually playtested my brother's scenario yet, but the game will certainly have plenty of scenery to interact with.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Mag Con report

A couple of weeks ago I took my brother and my niece to Mag Con, a gaming convention that serves as a fundraiser for one of the schools in New Caney. My brother was anxious to introduce his daughter to gaming, and I knew just the event to draw her in: Circus Maximus!
There were four of us old guys playing, along with my niece. Of course my brother and I tried to kill each other in this game, and the other two veteran gamers did the same.
But while we were all intent on knocking each other out of the race, the girl kept her eyes on the prize and ended up coming in first place in her first game at her first convention.
I knew another game she would like: Steve Jackson's Munchkin. They were demoing the Marvel version of the game, so it had some superheroes that she was familiar with, and the gameplay was simple for her and my brother to pick up. There were a total of six players, and while we all tried to stab each other in the back, my niece again won the game.
Some other games I saw but didn't play included this Lego whaling scenario, which I had seen at Millenniumcon. It looks like fun, and I will have to try it this fall if it's on the MillCon schedule.
There was also a Walking Dead game, but no one was playing when I shot this photo. Looks good, anyway. By this time, we had to go, but not before my brother--who went into the game thinking he would hate it--bought a copy of Munchkin. He and my niece had a good time, and I hope this means we have a new gamer.
As a bonus, the next morning my brother and I played a quick game of Ogre: Objective 218, an Ogre-themed card game. A nice way to wind down a weekend of gaming.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Frostgraving for fun and profit

My wizard and her warband came out with a good haul from last week's Frostgrave scenario. We played the Ghoul King scenario in our Lich Lord campaign.
We started out sealed underground with the Ghoul King on his throne in the center of the chamber. While my wizard and her apprentice led the soldiers toward some nearby treasure, Stout joined the warband's two shooters, Bowman and Quarrel, to go distract the undead monarch.
This plan turned out incredibly better than I expected, with the archer rolling a natural 20 to kill the Ghoul King where as he sat, leaving the treasures near his throne open for the taking.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

What's a spaceship game doing on here?

Last week my Frostgrave group took a break from that game and allowed me to run a scenario for Galactic Knights instead. The players were new, so I kept the premise simple: A couple of Terran squadrons surprised a pair of Avarian carriers trying to fly past a planet in order to make another hyperspace jump.
John took the Terran white squadron of a galactic battlecruiser (Big Mo) and two stellar cruisers (Curley and Larry). I took the red squadron, with the galactic battlecruiser Aggravated Assault and the stellar cruisers Offensive Contact and Probation Violation.
Wayne and Yosef each took a galactic attack carrier, the Raptor and the Soarglide respectively. Sorry for the blurry picture, but it's all I got. The flattops' goal was to make it to the other end of the board. The Terrans' goal was to stop them.
The carriers immediately launched all their fighters, making an impressive sight as they soared past the planet.
To the left of the world, you can barely make out my battlecruiser's own fighter wings, trying to avoid the enemy attack craft so they could shoot at the carriers.
The fighters from both carriers converged on the cruiser Offensive Contact. Even with AA support from its sister ship and help from the battlecruisers' interceptors, the Terran vessel took way too much damage to survive. And our sides attack fighters didn't do much to the enemy.
The only positive to my stellar cruiser becoming a rapidly expanding ball of plasma was the fact that all those enemy fighters had to return to their motherships to refuel and rearm. Unfortunately for the attack craft from the Raptor, my side managed to destroy a few of that carrier's hanger/launcher systems, forcing some squadrons to land on the Soarglide and a couple of unlucky flights to circle until they had an open hanger.
Meanwhile, the carriers accelerated as the other ships closed into particle beam range. The Terrans concentrated their fire on the Raptor, taking out weapons and hangers before a beam tore into the carrier's jump drive, stranding it in the star system without faster-than-light capability. Now that we knew one of the ships wasn't going anywhere, we started to shoot up the other one as we drifted closer.
Our shots did pretty much only superficial damage to the up-till-now pristine Soarglide. At this point, the carriers were going to drift off the left edge of the map on the next turn, while the white squadron was headed off the bottom edge (with my two remaining red ships slowing down as the wreckage from the Offensive Contact drifted leisurely away from the battle).
We called the game a draw--one carrier escaped off the map, but its sister ship would be captured without a working hyperdrive, and one interdictor was destroyed, with negligible damage to the rest. Fun game, and they definitely want to play again.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

HotT night bonus material

Here are some other Hordes of the Things and DBA armies I saw at the HotT game night last week. Note that these are all 15mm scale (40mm base width) as opposed to my preferred 25/28mm (60mm base width). First, here's a battle between orcs and elves (with eagle allies). I think these are actually 10mm figures, maybe Warmaster.
Next, we have a fight with orcs and goblins from contemporary fantasy gaming on one side and Asag and the Stone Allies from Sumerian myth on the other.
Here's a closeup of the demon Asag (in the back) and his army of enchanted stones.
And here's a detail shot of the greenskins.
Finally, there was a game of DBA going on as well, Indians vs. Selucids (I think).
Some great detailing on the chariots and elephant.
Anyone else played Hordes of the Things or De Bellis Antiquitatus lately, or working on an army?

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

HotT night at the game store

I found out that some of the locals who play Hail Caesar also play De Bellis Antiquitatus and its fantasy offshoot, Hordes of the Things. When I heard that DBA and HotT were on the agenda last week at Dragon's Lair, I brought some of my 28mm armies to run a game.
My opponent, John, recently purchased the rulebook and had made up his own army in 15mm scale. To show him the game at 28mm scale, I played my Nightmare Legion army and gave him Surtr and the Sons of Muspel. We rolled to see who would be the defender, and it was the fire giants with their volcano stronghold.
It was a low-key game, as I tried to demonstrate how the various units moved and interacted. I even got to show him how my Lurkers element (skeleton rising from the grave) works, as I deployed it against his Beasts (raging wildfire) when they entered the woods. It was a quick demo, however, as the wildfire doubled the undead's roll, incinerating the Lurker.
He also learned how Artillery and Shooters work (not very effectively in my case), and then his beast contacted the Artillery and reduced it to ashes as well.
My Magician general, the necromancer, did manage to force one Behemoth to flee, but the rest of the fire army, including Warbands, kept coming.
Finally, his Warbands broke my Spears, meaning he had destroyed over half my army for the victory.
It was fun playing Hordes of the Things again, and even more fun using my two oldest and favorite armies. There were other gamers playing HotT as well, and I hope to have more such games on a regular basis.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Starfleet Wars eBay find

You may be thinking, "What's he doing, blogging about a spaceship game after all this time?" but I haven't abandoned that aspect of my hobby. And on that note, I have to share my latest eBay score.
In addition to the Starfleet Wars rules and expansion booklet, both in great condition, I received a laminated quick reference sheet. It also came with the original envelope and a pad of starship record sheets. In the days long before home computer printers, or even easy access to a photocopier, these record sheets were a necessary game component.
This auction lot also came with a promotional pamphlet for SfW on glossy paper. While the front duplicates the rulebook cover image and the back lists the range of castings at the time the game was released, it's the inside of this sheet that's remarkable. ...
 

... A full-color photograph of the minis that existed at publication, painted in classic 1970s graphic style.
While this image is floating around the internet, it's cool to have a copy of the original publication, and in such great condition. I think I will put it in a frame and hang it on the wall of my game room.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Frostgrave in the House (of Longreach)

The exploration (or is that exploitation?) of the Frozen City continues. In our most recent Lich Lord campaign game, we entered The House of Longreach--an ancient mansion with magical doorways.
Unfortunately, those doors were hard for my wizard and her crew to get working. While the portals are supposed to transfer characters to the treasure room, or to other doorways on the battlefield, Quarell, my crossbowman, stepped through one door and got teleported out of the game.
It was a good crowd, though: Four of us longtime players paired off to play the Longreach scenario on separate boards, while another veteran, Jon, introduced a new player to Frostgrave on a third setup.
Unfortunately, most of my characters ended up taking damage from the malfunctioning dimensional portals. My opponent, Wes, was more fortunate, and had a couple of characters zap on over next to my apprentice.
Meanwhile, my two treasure hunters (Frick and Frack, members in good standing of the Guild of Condotierre, Linkboys, Roustabouts, and Stevedores, Marlinko chapter) managed to cart a couple of treasures off the board. Nice, but I was hoping for more valuable loot from the vault.