Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Shameless Plug!

OK, yes, a shameless plug for Council Fires 2011.

For those of you who don't know yet, Council Fires has been resurrected and is taking place on October 1 at the Cambridge Newfoundland Club. You can see all the details here and follow us on Facebook here.

We now have eight vendors for your shopping pleasure, a full breadth of games and, of course, Vidal's smiling face as you walk in the door. For the astoundingly low price of $10.00 CAD (that would be $10.11 USD for our American cousins) you get a full day of gaming and emptying your wallet. 

And I'd be happy to concoct excuses for your wife/girlfriend/boyfriend/significant other to explain the dip in your bank balance and/or your unexplained absence.

Remember, Playing with Toy Soldiers is Really Just Playing with Toy Soldiers.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Imagination Game and campaign thoughts

I hosted a small ImagiNation game last weekend to give my Gourmandie troops a chance to stretch their legs. My friend John came by to partake of the toy soldier goodness. I decided to take Field of Battle out for a spin, something I hadn't done in a long time. If you look back through the Napoleonic posts on this blog, you'll see that I really gamed the hell out of these rules. My compatriots at MIGS and I played at least 100 games using Field of Battle and a couple of campaigns.  But once I sold off my Napoleonic and War of 1812 collections, coupled with so much FoB gaming, I decided to take a step away from the rules. The game Sunday reminded me why I like these rules so much. They give quick results in the normal Piquet fashion, with lots of uncertainty and drama.

The good news is that my Gourmandie army was able to fight its first battle without a defeat. Now, I'm not saying I won...but a draw is at least not a defeat! Check out the pics below for a short synopsis of the game.
The forces of Gourmandie deploy for battle under the watchful eye of le Marquis de Fromage. Ordered to the border with Andalonia in order to face incursions by the army of Don Pedro, the intrepid Marquis has thought to be bold and make the first move. He has moved his small force to the town of San Miguel, a known Andalonian base, to try and draw out Don Pedro's army into a precipitate assault.

Don Pedro encourages his men to attack the brash move by Gourmandie. And yes, they do bear a remarkable resemblance to another of my collections...suspend your disbelief.

The first Andalonian units begin their assault on the Gourmandie line. Le Marquis' plan is coming together...really!

 Andalonian lancers await the chance to pounce!

 Les Grenadiers a Cheval Boursin move to support the artillery of the Gourmandie line.
While I haven't been too active on the painting front, I have been gaming and thinking and planning. One focus of late has been campaigning. This internal conversation was sparked by a recent external conversation with Daniel about his and his brother's prospects after graduation from RMC. Both will be posted about the country (or deployed abroad) and our chances of gaming together will be severely limited. To keep in gaming contact, I thought it would be interesting to play a campaign with them but there would be some significant challenges. We couldn't count on getting together to play out the tactical battles so the ability to solo game the battles or play them out with friends in our respective vicinities would be necessary. Fortunately, when Daniel, Michael and I build collections, we usually build both (or multiple) sides or factions. Unfortunately, we don't build the same collections. So, we could find ourselves in a situation where Michael is posted in New Brunswick with his 1/285 WWII and Modern collections (oh, and his spaceship fleets), Daniel is in Manitoba with his 28m WWI collection (and maybe a new 28mm Thirty Years War collection?), and I'm here in Ontario with 28mm Carlist Wars, 28mm WWII, and 28mm Imagination. What to do? It's clear we couldn't play a conventional campaign, such as WWII or horse and musket.We need a system that allows us to play a map campaign and fight the tactical battles in whatever genre, scale, or historical context we have available and choose at the time. So one battle initiated by Michael may be fought out by him and his local gaming group using 1/285 WWII and another battle initiated by Daniel may be solo-gamed by him using 28mm TYW.  Bizarre? Perhaps, but the campaign system itself needs to be generic enough to accommodate different tactical battle possibilities. Perhaps a point system to translate from campaign map to any of the specific tactical rule sets? Or maybe only worrying about ensuring proper ratios between forces fighting a battle need be considered? The interesting thing to consider is how each campaign participant may look at the exercise. If the map and campaign system is handled properly, one player could see it as a WWII campaign, another as a horse and musket campaign. It wouldn't matter much really, I don't think, just a matter of perspective. Anyway, things to ponder...