Wednesday 6 August 2014

Once more in Iskandria...

As a bit of a change from the usual fayre, we were looking for a game for last weeks club night and Kev had asked me if I had anything in mind and having recently come across the Urban War rules, this jumped to mind, so we decided on that. Dave K was also looking for a game for the evening so we had a three way drop down game just playing to break point, last man standing.

Kev was as his usual, plumped for Gladiators;

4 Secutors
2 Retiari
1 Decurion
2 Pit Beasts
1 Greater Pit Beast
1 Myrmillio
1 Exo Suit
and 1 Taurian Howitzer

Dave being the man he is stumped up for Viridians;

4 Marine's
1 Marine Sergeant
2 Special Forces
1 Sniper
2 Shock Marine's
1 HMG Team

I, being the underhanded tyranical/imperialist/dictorial peacekeeper that I am, went for VASA as usual;

5 Peacekeepers
1 Peacekeeper Sergeant
1 Archangel
1 Archangel Sergeant
2 Oni Class Battle Suits (Allies)

With a good amount of terrain on the board and the teams equally spaced, the word was Go! and with the first initiative going to Kev and with his first shot of his Howitzer landing right in the middle of my Peacekeepers, I was not chuffed, loosing the Peacekeeper Sergeant on the first roll of the dice.

Now, after lots of slagging and general comments to the fact that 'what do gladiator's do with a howitzer in an arena' and ' no it's not a mortar, it's a howitzer' it came to the fact that Kev had fielded his howitzer in the last couple of games but no one had noticed, such was it's un-erring in-accuracy. Not this game it seemed. And so it proved.

The game then resolved itself into Dave's Viridians bunching up and slowly sidling round to face the on-coming Gladiators while keeping each other in sight for support. Kev with slightly more numbers split his force with the shooty types taking cover and watching the advance of the VASA while lobbing the odd howitzer shell in my direction, while the bulk of his close combat (most) troops advanced quickly on the Viridians.

I meanwhile fanned out (trying to avoid incoming artillery and tried to get as many guns to bear on the Gladiators in my sector while menacing towards the Viridians with the Battlesuits.

The Viridians did pop up pretty early on in the direction of the VASA with their sniper climbing up the landing pad and emerging on the roof for a vantage point and promptly took a pot shot at the advancing Battle suits but to no effect, but the rest of their troops were occupied with the Gladiators slowly moving round to meet them.

The battle suits in reply sent a hail of depleted uranium rounds from their Autoguns and the second suit nailed the sniper.

A second Peacekeeper soon followed the Sergeant being atomised by artillery but the encroaching Peacekeepers and Archangels started to worry the Gladiators as they fanned out and started to get a good number of shots onto a small number of defenders.

The combat between the Viridians and the Gladiators began to hot up with both sides feeding in more and more but the Viridians began to get the upper hand with the Gladiators slowly getting the worst of the fight.

The Gladiators began to feel the pinch and trying to fight two fronts, began to look dodgy, rapidly approaching their break point with loses mounting from the Hand to Hand Combat with the Viridian's and one going down to fire from the Peacekeepers, quickly followed by one cut down by one of the Arch Angels.

In a make or break attempt to pull out something, Kev targetted his own Greater Pit Beast which was surrounded by five or so Viridians (and was probably soon going to go down with that number of opponents against it) with his howitzer.

Once again, he was spot on target, and though his pit beast did take a wound he managed to take out four of the Viridians with the blast in one go, evening things up more than a little.

An Archangel hops over the field to take up position where the sniper was and dispite Cal2 and three shots, failed to hit the now distant Viridians. The angel was soon cut down by return fire finding neon signage insufficient cover.

The second Archangel falls to return fire from the Gladiators ensconced under the pipefarm but the accompanying Peacekeepers cut down the Gladiator responsible in return. Quickly followed by another from the advancing Battlesuits.

The lead Battlesuit then charged into the fray and the lone gladiator didn't stand for long and another of Kev's troops was down. This being followed by the demise to gun fire of the Big Beast, bringing Kev to break point and the subsequent check was failed and the Gladiators legged it.

A lone Peacekeeper on the bridge thinks he's safe miles from anyone...
This then left both the VASA and the Viridians a distance apart and both within one casualty of break point.

Dave consolidated his remaining troops at the far corner of the field and I began an advance trying to keep to cover.

Dave then spotted the lone Peacekeeper advancing across the walkway and at maximum range of three feet away and bearly visible, the HMG team opened up and cut the unsuspected Peacekeeper down. The break point was duly checked and two ones on two D10 obviously meant the galaxy's finest had had enough too, and victory went to the novice Urban War player, Dave, who in his own words muttered the proverbial "beginners luck". Not so, well played by all.

An absolute smashing game (as the spur of the moment one's often are) and the game even drew a spectating crowd for some of the more spectacular moments (or the swearing got too loud).

A good show all round and perhaps a taste of things to come in the forth coming Necromunda campaign. Here's hoping.

You can see another view of the game and some more (better) photo's over on Kev's blog at Double Six Required

Sunday 3 August 2014

Claymore '14

Saturday and another annual trip through to the east for Claymore '14.

The day was torrential rain for the most part so a bit damp for everyone and coupled with the last day of the Games with events in both Edinburgh and Glasgow, the traffic was nasty.

But coming the back way we avoided the worst of the traffic and got stuck in to the day.

The venue was pretty busy for the early part of the day but I thought the numbers were down and only around 11:30 -12:30 seemed like it's usual busy self, though perhaps a SESWC bod can advise on the numbers being up or down on the day, but perhaps people just weren't staying as long at the venue as usual.

I thought the number of traders was up and things here did seem busier with a number of choke points due to proximity of stalls but not any problem here, just gave you pause for looking at the stock on offer though again speaking to traders, trade was constant but not very busy for most. I do think the day (weather and traffic) reduced the numbers through the door a fair bit.

I did notice that there were a number of tables for club games unoccupied, maybe half a dozen tops which I think were victims of the traffic mayhem. It was unfortunate that most of these were allocated space in the same hall which made this area look a bit forlorn. There were a couple of the clubs which didn't get to set up until well into the morning again delayed because of the extra traffic.

On the up side, there were several new traders with a variety of stock and plenty to browse and plan future purchases and the variety of games on offer was also still good.

A few of the gaming highlights;

League of Augsburg

Dave Imrie's 1400's tussle


Bloodbowl & Dungeonbowl

Durham's 54mm Waterloo

Kirriemuirs' Macedonians vs Thracians

Falkirk's Indian Mutiny

Gripping Beasts Saga PP

Iron Brigade (I think)

Another enjoyable day out all told (despite the crappy weather) after being fed and watered, chewing the fat with friends and catching up with bods from afar with a few modest purchases and acquisitions including some Claymore Castings highlanders, some more Ainsty casting paraphernalia and a couple of bits and bobs from Mutineer Miniatures, so happy on that front too.

Also bumped into some guys who have resurrected the club I was a member of thirty years ago, the Clydesdale Wargames Club so may pay them a visit to see old friends of yore which was all a bonus.
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