Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Chain of Command at Gothcon XXXIX

I went to Gothcon during the Easter holiday with my gaming buddies Thomas, Laffe and Koen, playing participation-games of Big Chain of Command (Big CoC, written by Rich Clarke of Too Fat Lardies) and a fun time we had.
The following is a short description of what we did and some pictures. I let them tell the most of the stories.
One of the jump-off points
...and another
We started with coffee at my place on Thursday after lunch and off we went in heavily dented rental car. We arrived rather late in the evening, checked in at the hotel and went to sleep.
A real-life sunset over the North African walled compound
Friday saw us browsing the vendors and gaming halls and setting up the table for our first participation game, starting at 1400 hours and continued into the evening. Four players, each commanding a platoon.
Saturday saw two more Big CoC games and an evening/night game of ordinary CoC with two players commanding a platoon each.
German platoons have a much higher firepower but the British ones have the 2” mortar that showed its power time and time again in the following battles. A shootout between two squads will probably give a German win but the smoke-grenades from the 2” mortar gave crucial cover.
We changed the available cover a bit between games to try to encourage movement and manoeuvres as the games tended to become static with both sides trying to hug the few pieces of cover there were.
Victory seemed to go the side that actually tried to manoeuvre into favourable positions and in the final fight we threw in more AFV:s and anti-tank assets as we really wanted to see Thomas’ on-fire marker in action.
Burn baby, burn!
We were very satisfied when something finally caught fire.
Gott im Himmel. Engländer!
A great ending of the final game.
Sunday saw some frantic last-minute shopping (I bought the board-game Tsuro – great game!) and then a long trip back to Stockholm.
In summary: We were satisfied after an exhaustive weekend playing with Rich’s Big CoC…

Welcome new followers:
James Cotgrave - no blog that I could find
Wardy-la who’s got a bunch of blogs, for example Gjallarhorn - Viking/Saxon/Dark Age campaign, A Project too Far – WWII and Chain of Command and “By the orders of the Great White Queen” – colonial and darkest Africa wargaming. Well worth a look.
Pedro Lopez with blogs Pedro Lopes – his comics and drawings, and Warriors from the Danish Wasteland – wargaming in the Dark Ages, Old West and in an post-apocalyptic world – newly started and shows a lot of promise. Niiiiice!
Fellow Swede Hobbyworker with Hobbyworker blog – all about painting and modelling historical miniatures. Great blog!

Thursday, 16 April 2015

More Pulp Alley action on the Tibetian Plateau - AAR

We had another go at Pulp Alley at the club this Monday and my intention was to try out my own league, Corpo di Spedizione Santa Sede starring Sister Innocenza, Monsignore Cadaverica and some proxy models for those not ready for the table yet. I was successful in packing the minis and I actually got them to the club in time. But the paper with the league stats on were still on my painting table. Curses were heard in the club…
We were back on the Tibetian Plateau trying to save the world. I teamed up with another club member and we played my hero-team from last game - the Archaeologists led by the great hero Montana Smith. Fighting for the good of humanity and enlightenment!
The opposition:
The Independent Phrenoligists that we met last time. Evil, I say!
The Brits. Don’t let their looks deceive you. They attacked us totally unprovoked. Really evil.
The Belgian pommes frites eaters. They tried to take the artefact that rightfully belonged to us. Unspeakably evil!
We played one of the basic scenarios from the Pulp Alley rules book, The Lost Keys, where there are four minor plot points spread across the board and one major plot point, an artefact, in the middle. 
 A captive with some important information was the plot point closest to where we set up
Some arcane manuscripts became the target for the Brits.
The Phrenologists set their eyes on a case filled with things crucial to their success.
Hidden in the cargo on top of the car was hidden another crate filled with goodies. This crate was like a magnet for both Phrenologists  and Belgians
You had to unlock one of the minor plot points to be able to unlock the major one.
The major plot point, an Idol, was hidden in the baggage on one of the yaks in the caravan that had stopped to rest in the middle of the road.
Players then took turns deploying one league member a time.
The Phrenologists started in the village on the far left. Archeologists spread around the truck front left. Belgians in the walled compound far right and the Brits front right.
On the first turn each league tried to reach one or more plot-points and some shots were fired. One of our boys was hurt but he managed to take hold of himself in the end of the turn and stayed in the fight.
All leagues but the Belgians unlocked a minor plot point during the second turn but in the process a Shoggoth was released among the Phrenologists (should suit them well, they are evil after all). 
The plot point on the car between the Belgians and the Phrenologists was contended and no one succeeded in unlocking it.
Now fighting started in earnest.
The car was the centre of a bloody battle between Phrenologists and Belgians. It saw firefights and close combat between a sledgehammer wielding Belgian madwoman and the dreaded Nurse Sigrid.
The Belgians finally managed to unlock their minor plot point and in the process let lose a Hound of Tindalos.
The Shoggoth was slain by those blood-thirsty Phrenologist.
Ha, we finally got that golf-club-wielding mad Scot!
The frantic race for the artefact was now on.
One league after the other made a rush for it and that in turn prompted everyone else on the board to shoot at them.
Our heroes trying to protect was is rightfully theirs.
Character after character fell for well-aimed shots, well placed Perils or close combat. The area around that poor yak turned red with blood (We all thought the yak got one between the eyes early on, as it didn’t run away. How wrong we were...)
Meanwhile the Hound went berserk.
Finally, with just two rounds left our heroes did a last dash for the idol. All members of the team still standing tried to find the small artefact in the jumble of cheap trade items in the baggage on the immobile yak.
All the while the other leagues behaved like the cowards they were and shoot down our heroes in cold blood. From behind! (I’m looking at you, Doctor Kopfgelände! There will be consequences...) The Hound of Tindalos set its sight on our poor heroes. It was looking grim indeed.
Our friends failed to find the treasure and one by one they fell or were thwarted by every last Peril card that anyone around the table could find. Very unjust and not sporting at all.
In the end the yak, having played dead, bolted and ran off with the priceless artefact, making us all look rather foolish. The game was over and every league went back to their camps, licking their wounds.
A very tight match and as usual both nail-bitingly thrilling and hilarious. Great fun!
Until next time! Stay tuned for another thrilling adventure with the Miniatures Man J

Finally we started to discuss how to manage a Pulp Alley campaign. The intention is to play the Perilous Island campaign with every player having one league. It is still in the planning phase and you will see more of it here soon.
Back to the painting table now and the rest of the minis for my league, appropriate vehicles for my heroes, some boats, ships and jungle terrain for the campaign and other useful stuff. Oh, and Dust, a couple of fantasy figures, Gothcon and whatnot.