One does not simply walk into…

It all started in a rainy day in Shire. An idea that walking through the marshes, getting boots wet and to suffer all sorts of discomfort would actually be not quite an adventure that little hobbits should undertake. Unawares, the Evil eye watched carefully every step our little party took around the Northern regions and lakeside towns – quite pretty now that Smaug has been long gone.

What we thought, instead of suffering all the nasty hardships, to take a biscuits and afternoon tea at the pleasant lakeside town, and enjoy the legendary Darwen hospitality in the Erebor instead. Well, never really went that far, but idea was good, and far better than meddling with the temperamental nature of the southern folks.

They wished for war, let them have it!

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Starting the journey at Rivendel, Evil, gotten more wise rised troops in northern forts.

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A lot more.

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And while doing that, left the doors of Mordor unguarded.

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More armies were called to reinforce Moria…

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And our Grand Tour continues, on the left, famous mount Doom.

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… And then, at the moment of ultimate victory. Any other result would have given Good Folks of West a victory. The Dice Gods show their deep distain to my strategy, again! 😀

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So close, so far. Rivendel, well, they got what the snobbish Elves ever wished for.

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Armies of Oblivion

AoO.pngI’ve waited this for a while – in fact, years since I missed the ziplock edition entirely. Because of some odd reason I did not feel like paying $350 or more for the module. Thanks to the glacial release speed of MMP (this is not a complaint, rather statement of fact), Armies of Oblivion is finally here, and what a box of goodies that is (albeit, too bad the Sturm Tiger was dropped – not because there would have been any use for it, but because it is such a fun thing). That said, it does not mean that Armies of Oblivion would be for everyone. Certainly not. Some scenarios are fairly long, and fairly complex – and some are just not interesting for many people.

If you like obscure things, and especially which include interesting situations, poor troops and less used hardware. Axis minors, Italians, Chinese? Armies of Oblivion is Perfect choice.

In my opinion ASL late war tanks and vehicles make things less interesting because the hit/kill ratio becomes rather high. Playing cat and mouse with tanks is interesting up to point, but then I think armored cars are more interesting than late war tanks – especially some lumbering fortresses where mobility is sacrificed for theoretical increased chance of survival. Therefore, some truly obscure and weird designs make life interesting, those you can find from the French, Italian, Japanese, Allied and Axis minors.

Can’t wait to get Armies of Oblivion to the table.

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Deluxe afternoon

We had an opportunity to play a scenario from WO18, Deluxe scenario Dew of Death which pitted Japanese against Chinese, a run through situation spiced up with poison gas. Chinese 1st class troops have certain disadvantages even without the harassing poison gas.

Terrain has very limited cover since all forests are brush. Buildings are clustered such a way that they can be subject to the poison FFE rather easily.  Because of the 1MC FFE, defense needs to be spread out. Chinese have broken morale of 6, so any hope to have them recovered once they lose it is very unlikely.

Japanese do not have much time, and they have to exit a lot of troops, so if Chinese can make Japanese to pay for every step, however lightly, they will not make it. Hence, I planned to take advantage of every single 1.5FP shot I could muster if I would benefit from FFMO.

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Initial placement, very, very distributed.

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FFE lands on the worst possible place, in the middle. It killed my MMG and blocked LOS from the other MMG. It was pure luck. Japanese entered all over the edge but progress was slowish. I tried to maintain my concealment as long as practicable not wasting shots against + hindrance TEM.

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Chinese casualties are mounting and retreating to orchard. Japanese got their mortar in place and smoke started to fly about. I managed to stop the advance on the hills but on the left Japanese got through.

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That meant they got through until a Chinese Hero appeared! It the moment of despair when Chinese LMG managed to pin the DC squad. Japanese entered in close combat, not realizing that Japanese undoing was waiting in the cloud of smoke.. 

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Japanese were ambushed in the building by Chinese lead by 9-1 HtH. That pretty much ended the Japanese game because my opponent would have been really hard pressed to get all of the remaining troops unharmed off the board.

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Game weekend – War of The Ring

We had an opportunity to play four player game of War of the ring. Preluded with a bit of a movie marathon, we got the game to the table. Six hours later, after many twists and turns it turned out that the Evil(tm) won by military conquest. Some rules were played a bit wrong but we got pretty good overall feel of the system. It has the potential to grow very popular, however I must fix the figure issue. It is really, really bad for the game flow. Poor, poor design choice.

As evil, we started out a bit confused and slowish. Did not really allocate too much for the hunt, and also did not get a whole lot of results before fellowship was already in Lorien. However, we did get everybody on a war footing, and some armies hired and attacking. Wormtongue was doing what he did best and kept Rohan at bay for a time, but then what really helped us was the fact that the To Be Slaved Humanity only got two rolls of Will of the West (which clearly made a political statement of the west apparent to everyone), one of which was cancelled. Because the West did not wish to see Saruman defeated, I put up as much fun with him as I could.

Meant Armies, Death and Deceit 😀

Mostly what the TBSH did well was dying. In great many numbers. It was with great regret we had to inform the ring bearers about their ultimate failure at the entrance to the Mount Doom. So much bloodshed could have been avoided, would those greedy buggers given the preciou… Ahem, ring to us voluntarily.

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Yep, they really do not fit. No way. Army boxes? Used, and they do not fit there either.

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It is a small step for the man.

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But a huge leap for the Orkinity.

This said, many thanks for excellent company!


Posted in AAR, Boardgames, Fantasy | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Game Weekend II – Blast from the past

Very seldom do we get on a table so visually appealing, and fantastically executed game as Age of Napoleon. By no means it is very grande scale, but what it does, it really does well indeed. Five hours, full scenario, some rules references and lunch in between. Dramatic movements, and balancing on the edge of a kife until the very last die roll. Fortunes of war crashing on us like waves of a storm. Very seldom there is such a dramatic events going back and forth, and constant pressing uncertainty. Indeed it is much of what I like.

Now I actually wonder why has this game relegated to the shelf. It is just very good, light grand strategy game which actually gets completed once started.

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French never quite made it to Russia

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Spain in Flames!

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A second coming of Austria

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EnterFrench losses mounting  – mostly from Non-Russian Attrition

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Austria in Flames. They too got enough of the iron yoke of French

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Resistance is futile! Suddenly Britain was left alone to defeat France. Cowards!

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You’d think we’d not dare?

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Yes we did!

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Oops. No, you don’t!

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That’s it then. 

A the end Coalition could not make France to surrender, and France could not get necessary territories secured so the war would have continued if not the political pressure to force peace.

We opted to use random draw for the armies, and that was indeed very good idea. We are not supposed to optimize. We are supposed to fight with what we have.

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Pax Romana, Wars of the Diadochi pt. 2

Our fantastic little Wars of the Diadochi with Pax Romana continues in leisure pace. This time we saw the Great Alliance, A Third War of Syria, a Fall of Greece under the rule of Philip V, Dissolution of the Pergamun alliance, the rise of Egypt under Ptolemaios and the 1st Battle of the Nations where vast German hordes pushed onwards towards Greece, dislodging Philip V in the eve of the crisis. A deed that was to cost dearly.

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East Coalition army stacking up and preparing to assault Greece mainland.

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Egypt invades Greece as a result of the Great Alliance

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Greece enticed in two front war.

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Greece suffered heavily on the onslaught but it may be that this only reinforces the East if we, as the remaining of the Diadochi fail to muster forces against him. Indeed we are living a most turbulent of times.

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Greece has a new enemy at the gates, the Rome.

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Rise of the German Nations…

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Behold the might of Greece!

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What do you mean, everyone, sir? I mean E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E!!!

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Acquisition – Prussians on a march

I’ve planned this for a long time, to enroll more troops for the Prussians. Now, I am almost done the painting of the Landwehr battalions, total of 10 of them, 48 figures each. Now it is time for these guys…

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This is the test batch of the reservists, the second largest contingent in my Prussian army besides of Landwehr. I think they are joy to paint actually and now that the weather is turning, I think there will be time to do that too. While at that, there is also largish number of French to to, and also some ah, so evil cossacks. It’s been a long time since I got these, so I’d need to make an inventory again…

Anyway, off to the painting table. There is scenario in the works for these troops…

Posted in Drums and Shakos Large Battles, Painting | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments