Saturday, July 1, 2017

Finnish Suomi KP SMG

While visiting family in Thomaston, ME we stopped into the Knox Masion museum. As luck would have it they were also having a display of weapons, titled 'Muskets to Machine Guns'. The gun collection contained a decent amount of WWII vintage guns, particularly Japanese and American. For me the jewel of the collection was the Finnish Suomi KP SMG. I've included photos of it including one of the card telling more about the weapon. Of note is the beautiful wood used for the stock.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Mid-Week Board Gaming

Scott, Josh and Mike stopped by last Thursday for an evening of board gaming. The game this night was Tiny Epic Galaxies. Although the box is small, the game is quite dynamic with plenty of inter-player interaction. I had a lot of fun even though I was last place both games. I'm looking forward to playing it again - highly recommended.

We're getting the band back together again. The four of us used to game regularly every Friday evening for several years, but life, children, careers, got in the way. Now that life is settling down for most of us we're looking to make this a more regular thing.

Monday, June 19, 2017

June 2017 Northern Conspiracy Game Night

Last Friday I ran a game of Iron Cross at our club's game night. This was a revised version of my 'Race for the Radar' scenario that I ran in February. The OBs were tuned and reduced to three players per side. Both sides got the hang of the rules quickly and played well. The hero of the game was definitely Art's SdKfz 222 armored car. That unit took out a Sherman, a Stuart and a Vickers MG team. Art was also the 'rally-master' CinC rallying several German units from the brink of elimination with great company morale checks.

Charlie ran an Austria vs Bavarian napoleonic game with his rules, Napoleon's Rules of War.

Peter ran a game of "800 Fighting Englishmen" (Large Scale Sword and Flame). Scenario was based on Khartoum.

More great photos and an excellent write-up of Charlie's game can be found on Ed's blog here.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Robbie-Con 2017

This past weekend a bunch of us drove up to the green mountains of Vermont for a weekend of gaming with our friend Robert (pictured left in the blue shirt). Robert rents out a function space and a bunch of his friends travel up for a weekend of food, miniature and board games.

Bob and I arrived before the others, so I broke out Age of War, a game that travels with me wherever I go in my RV. It's a fun quick filler game of dice rolling with a Samurai conquest theme. Everyone led at one point in this game with me eventually stealing the win with a quick grab of a 2nd monopoly. I'm mentioning it here because from there on I was on the other side of the coin.

After a nice dinner we played a game of Hannibal at the Gates 2nd edition hosted by Bob using his beautiful Roman and Gaul armies. This was a close-fought game with the Romans pulling out a win at the end. During the fight I thought it was going poorly for the Gauls, but in the end the units lost showed it was much closer. The other Gaul players did much better than I did in this one.

The Roman players - ready to show the Gauls how things are. All photos show Bob's beautiful new fur table cover.

Saturday Morning Robert put on a French vs. Allied game using his Napoleonic rules which are in development. To the left my opponent for the game was Ed of Ed M's Wargames Meanderings blog. You can read his post about the weekend on his blog here.

I had an advance 'forlorn hope' command caught unaware by the allies. My job was to hold until relieved. All in all I lasted a while before finally being dispatched by both Ed's Prussian guard and Mike's light cavalry who flanked me and attacked me from the rear.  The French guard, never made it to my aid - stopped in its tracks by a Russian massed battery supported by Bob's infantry. Fun game and Robert's rules are really shaping up to be fun and getting more refined with each game.

The final game for me for the weekend was Ralph's X-wing 'wormhole' extravaganza. We had more people than table space so on the fly Charlie and Mike came up with a fun idea - put two round tables together and put a wormhole where they join. Ships that crossed the wormhole entered the other table on a randomly selected edge position.

This was a fun learning game for me only being my second game. Ralph held out well with his Imperial strikers vs. Ed and I, but on the other Table Charlie got out matched by Bob's Tie Fighter swarm and Mike's advanced Tie Fighters.

I had a long drive home in my RV so I left after dinner, but the rest of the guys played a final game of The Grizzled after I left.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Special Board Game Session

I've had a loss in the family recently and my good friends Mike, Scott and Josh decided to come up to play some board games and visit. There was pizza, margaritas and root beer floats to help make the evening even better. Since it was a week night we chose two shorter games. We started off with a co-operative game, Dungeon Fighter. This is a fun beer-and-pretzels game of throwing dice onto a board, sometimes with unusual requirements, like doing it blind, or over the shoulder. The game came down to the last turn with the last roll only needing to hit the board. Mike, who had been fantastic all night blowing dice off his hand for extra damage, took the 'easy' shot of a normal roll......which didn't make it to the board! We all die! AIIEIEEEEEEEEEEeeeee...... Still very close to a win and good silly fun.

The second game was a more traditional competitive game, Explorers of the North Sea. A Viking themed ocean exploration game, this game to me is Carcassone, fixed and with more fun. Scott schooled us all with a 'collect all the livestock' strategy and judicious island control. I ended up a distant second with a less focused approach.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Electronic Brigadier at Huzzah! 2017

This past Saturday, I hosted a game using Electronic Brigadier at Huzzah! 2017. The scenario was my Bemis Heights scenario, Gates Attacks! My previous play test report for the scenario can be found here.

I had several players return from previous EB convention games and a few new players. Everyone took to the rules and tablets quickly and seemed to have a fun time. The scenario was a close-fought affair with both sides losing units during the game. In the end, although the Americans were doing well, the British kept control of the redoubts and held the field for a marginal British victory.

The American commanders discuss their battle plan before the first turn.

The British commanders recording on the tablets while the Americans take their first turn.

Additional in-game photos below.

Final results at the end of the battle:

British Army
  • Army cohesion: 64.6%
  • Total Casualties: 577 / 4920 (11.7%)
  • 2 units dispersed
  • 1 routed units
  • 2 shaken units

  • Honors to: 104 - Rangers and Marksmen
American Army
  • Army cohesion: 66.1%
  • Total Casualties: 640 / 6800 (9.4%)
  • 1 units dispersed
  • 2 routed units
  • 1 shaken units

  • Honors to: 224 - 2nd New York

During the morning session I was also able to sneak out and get two photos of Earl's game. Apologies to Phil, as the photos I took of his game came out too blurry. 

Friday, May 12, 2017

Battle of Dybboll, 28 May, 1849

My friend Ed M. from Ed M's Wargames Meanderings Blog and fellow Northern Conspirator, invited several of us to his home last Friday to play test his game for he's hosting at this month's club game night. The game was a post-Napoleonic scenario from the 1st Schleswig-Holstein War (1848/49). Ed thinks this conflict is much more interesting for wargamers than the more well known and popular 2nd Schleswig-Holstein War due to the former having many more 'fair fights'. This scenario represented the Battle of Dybbol, 28 May, 1849 which featured Danish and Prussian forces in a back-and-forth battle over several days. The scenario represents the final phase of the conflict. For a more detailed report of the battle with additional annotated photographs, I cannot more highly recommend you read Ed's report over on his blog.

The figures, all painted by Ed recently for his upcoming 'Chocolate Box Wars' project were beautiful, and masterfully selected from many different lines from several manufacturers. I'm very much looking forward to more games with these figures and Ed's Chocolate Box Wars rules.

Bob and Ralph were on the attack as the Prussians, with George and I defending a line of three towns with the Danes. George's plan was for us to defend our right flank as heavily as possible as that's where we expected the main attack. Even with shifting right, Ralph and Bob did a great job of wearing both of our commands down eventually securing two of the three towns with the third sure to fall very soon when George and I capitulated. Well played by Bob and Ralph.

More eye candy below of the game in progress. Thanks to Ed for hosting such a fun and pretty game.