Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Cavemen, Nazis and Saucers Oh My!

We had our local convention last weekend, Conquest Sac, at which I ran a couple of games.


First off was Pulp Action Library's Caveman game, a very fun, quick & simple game about prehistoric warfare. The things that sold me on this game were:
  • Players actually threw "rocks" at the other players (not the figures) to see if they hit with their missiles.
  • Combat is determined by rounds of Rock, Paper, Scissor (originally Cavemen played Rock, Rock, Rock, but that lacked the sophistication to provide a suitable resolution for the wargame rules).
  • The only "dice" used in the game are flat rocks with red goo on one side & black goo on the other. Red is good, black is bad, since it's better to be red than dead.
  • The players are expected to actually dance & chant to get the favor of the Gods (GM), & only communicate in grunts & hand gestures.

3 people played the game. I called them Lar, Atouk & Gog since they couldn't talk. This is the board laid out. Each tribe of cavemen came in from one of the corners, with the objective of getting food.

The food is a family of mammoths, with a saber tooth tiger stalking them in the bushes.

A few pictures of the different tribes.

They are the Tim Mee 1/48 scale plastic cavemen that you can still get on Amazon.

& these are the tools of the game: magic yellow totems used by the tribe's shaman, "rocks" for throwing made out of foam, & cave "dice". The caveman on the right is the shaman since his blonde hair is obviously magical.

The tribe converge on the Mammoth family...

The Mammoths scattered, but the cavemen quickly realized ganging up on the Mammoths is the way to go.

One tribe killed & drug off the saber tooth tiger, but another tribe finally killed one of the Mammoths, winning the game.

Eat Hitler

The 2nd game was another by Pulp Action Library, Eat Hitler. In 1945, Hitler & his senior staff try to travel back to 1939 to do it right the 2nd time. But they have a faulty ocillation overthruster & instead travel back to the Jurassic era (which looks strangely like the Paleolithic era where the Cavemen live).

In the game, you play dinosaurs trying to get through the crunchy Nazi shell to the soft chewy Hitler center. There are dinos from T Rex down to Raptors & Pterodactyls. The players also move the Nazis & herbivore dinosaurs to either get them in the way of the other players, or move them out of the way of their own dinos.

We had players from 6 yrs old, on up, & all had fun.

First on the officer buffet was Himmler with all the Raptors joining in.

The Pterodactyls gobbled up a trooper before confronting Hitler. But once they finally grabbed him to take him back to their aerie, the Raptor player used his Nazi activation to shoot the Pterodactyl & make him drop Hitler.

Then the Allosaurus gobbled Hitler up before the other 2 could move again.

You can barely see Hitler throwing his Heil Nazi gang sign before greasing the Allosaurus' gullet.

& here is the final count for the Pterodactyl's larder to feed their young.

The Allosaurus won since he ate both Hitler & Goering, & immediately went to the Dinosaur Emergency Room with severe stomach pains.

DUST Rumble in the Jungle

The final game was a joint effort by my local club. I was one of the assistant GMs & helped a bit on the terrain.

We played a big game of DUST Warfare simplified for the convention. For those not familiar with the DUST family of Weird World War 2 games, it's the 1950s & WW2 is still going, but with alien and advanced technology. The game includes rocket jump packs, zombies & gorilla troops, plus a variety of walkers.

Our game centered around an alien flying saucer that crashed into the African jungle (& there also happened to be dinosaurs in the area).

The saucer was built by one of our club members. He used 2 plastic snow saucers, & put flickering LED tea lights the smoke to make it look like it was on fire.

He even put bits & pieces inside the saucer to make it look completely alien.

Allied rocket troops fight with Axis gorillas over control of the saucer, with the rest of the troops try to pick up the alien debris scattered behind the crash.

We ran 2 games for 10 players each & both went well. We'll be running the game again at Kublacon & Pacificon if you're interested in trying it.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Wooden Wars: The Medieval Way

During a boring Sunday afternoon, my daugther suggested we play the new Wooden Wars game that my friend Tom developed. It's similar to HG Wells' Little Wars. Tom is producting Napoleonic and Victorian Colonial laser etched wooden figure flats to go along with the rules through his Skull & Crown company.

My daughter & I both have these beautiful figures, but haven't put them together yet. So instead, we decided to use some Britian Ltd's Deetail medieval figures I'd gotten her for Christmas. We split up the figures evenly, 5 cavalry & 9 infantry each, & set aside the Dragon figure for special use later. Here is the opposing general with her forces arrayed.

Movement is done in Baton lengths, with infantry moving 1 Baton or firing & cavalry moving 1 Baton & firing, or 2 Batons with no fire. The Batons we used are from the Wooden Wars range.

Wooden Wars is geared towards Horse & Musket armies, tossing rubber balls when firing to knock down the opposing figures. But since we were playing with Medieval figures, we just pretended the cavalry & infantry were really good with thrown spears. Each unit can toss 1 rubber ball at the enemy & any figures it knocks down are removed as casaulties. Here I am lining up my shot, but the enemy is correctly unconcerned. My 1st 3 balls bounced well over the heads of her infantry.

The Dragon figure actually has pull-back & go wheels on it. So we decided we could each use the Dragon once, & any figure it touches is removed. Here is the Dragon as it cuts a wide swath through my cavalry, removing 3 of the 5 figures.

My cavalry made a desparate charge against my daugther's untouched unit of infantry, but 2 mounted knights against 9 men-at-arms went pretty much as you'd expect it. Here is the Dragon guarding my mounting pile of dead, after adding my last 2 knights.

I released my Dragon in hopes of holding off a cavalry charge, but the Dragon only took out 2 knights.

The rest of the cavalry charged in & took out all but one of my infantry.

My remaining figure boldly stood his ground, firing rubber balls to little effect, as my daughter's infantry marched across the field of battle & finally cut him down.

It was a very fun game & my daughter was very excited about beating me. It also introduced her to the concepts of measuring figure movement, making fire vs move choices, & rolling dice for combat resolution (used in melee). Hopefully once we put together our Wooden Wars Napoleonic armies, she'll be even more interested in playing.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Church of the ???

A few posts ago, I showed a church I had scratch built for Stange Aeons. I have now pretty much completed painting it up.

Instead of a steeple to hold some sort of emblem, I'm planning on painting a symbol on the wooden planks across the apex of the roof. I just haven't decided what to paint yet.

I know I was a bit heavy handed with the brown wash under the windows on this side.

Yep, that's the back of a building.

The mossy stuff on the roof & growing up the building is Underbrush from Woodland Scenics. Mason from Lead Adventure Forums used it on one of his buildings as ivy growth & I really liked it. It's a great way to make small growth in corners & around buildings.

The inside turned out a lot yellower than I intended, I was trying for a pine look. The side walls are plastic sheet, & the brush marks left in the paint ended up making it look a little like wood grain after I applied a brown wash.

Father Edmund can get a little messy some times.

& a quick shot of the steps down to the larder.

The interior dimensions of the building are pretty small, so I don't expect to do any actual gaming inside the church. But I'm very happy with how it come out, being my 1st attempt at a major scratch building project. I'm thinking there still needs to be some sort of symbol or mystic circle on the floor or wall behind the altar to finish the whole thing off.

I must say Skrapwelder helped out a lot. He gave me the resin roof & a lot of advice during the whole process.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Queen Victoria's Robot Wars

I've posted before about my very talented friend Tom & his new Wooden Wars venture. He recently ran a Kickstater to help him buy a laser cutter & has started making large scale wooden figure flats. You can find his ongoing efforts at his Skull and Crown blog.

His intial efforts were to make Napoleonic soldiers, but he quickly expanded into Victorian colonials of the science fiction variety. I have just completed painting up the human infantry that were the backers rewards for his Kickstarter.

Here are the 4 regular infantry I have, all armed with the latest Tesla rifles.

Unfortunately because I dont know how to properly use my camera phone, I either use no flash & get slightly blurry pictures that show the colors correctly...

...or I use the flash & get pictures in focus that are over exposed & make the colors look too light.

Here are the Steel Dragoons, mounted on mechanical dinosaur-like mounts.

The dragoons carry the carbine version of the Tesla rifle.

Here are the mounts with a slight customization. The large wrenchs actually came being held in a hand. I trimmed them down to fit "under" the saddle, since I figure the Dragoons won't always have mechanics around, so would need to be able to fix their own mounts.

& finally, the artillery crew for the Tesla Cannons. One of the nice things about these figures is that they come with many different arm options. I used an extra carbine arm from the Steel Dragoons to make the artillery guard figure on the left.

The pistol arm & holster from the crewman sprue allowed the the crewman figure to be changed into an officer.

You might wonder what the shiny dot in the middle of the crewman’s pith helmet is. It’s a rare earth magnet that I added.

& here is the result. The officer & artillery guard are generic enough to be used in regular infantry units. But obviously with all the ionized air surrounding the Tesla Cannons, the crew would need to wear breathing apparatuses. So I wanted the gasmask to be removable.
Unfortunately, the nicely formed disc isn’t on the other figures’ helmets, so it wouldn’t be as easy to put magnets on them. But you could definitely use the magnets to allow for arm swap outs.

They were lots of fun to paint & without meaning to, I ended up painting them up in a French Napoleonic color scheme.