Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Worminators....the final act!

Round eight of Worminators! 

Both teams have a single worm remaining and the Interactive Combat Wormery has taken a pounding. The game starts with Death worm and the round system has now ended, replaced with a simple IGO-UGO system.

Twenty third move. Death fires his team's second Homing Missile at Screw You but, the weapon failed to make the final turn and crashed short of the target. More mess but no damage; Screw You's turn.



Twenty fourth move. Another Bazooka round from Screw You carves it's way under Death worm. Death worm's turn.



Twenty fifth move. Clearly concerned by the increasingly powerful tremors coming from the ground beneath him, Death worm decides to find somewhere else to stand. He makes his way westwards to the full extent of his available move. Screw You worm's go!

Bugger....another missing pic! Look, the worm wiggled his way to the left by about six inches...

Twenty sixth move. Right, another Screw You Bazooka round takes out another chunk out of the terrain. Soon there will be little for Death worm to stand on!



Twenty seventh move. Death worm fires a Homing Missile at Screw You but it fails to make the final turn! Screw You, go again little dude!



Twenty eighth move. Screw You continues his dastardly mission to get at Death worm from below, carving his way ever closer to the surface! Death worm's turn.

 


Twenty ninth move. Death worm nonchalantly saunters away from the noise....Screw You's turn.



Thirtieth move. Screw You launches his last Homing Missile, it passes the narrow gap (just) before making the first turn towards the target (again, just). A second turn is required and the missile only just makes it by one die pip! However, it does make all the required turn tests and hits Death worm head on, the explosion throws Death worm into the air and down onto lower terrain causing more damage. In total, Death worm receives 61 points of damage giving him a grand total of 101 damage points and killing him. The resulting death throw explosion drops the tombstone further down, leaving it on the edge of the wormery. 


GAME OVER - TEAM Drew Bader WINS!!! 

Congratulations Drew, well played. And well played too team Andrew Massoura, it was a close run thing. 

So there you go, experiment over. It worked, I found a few things to tweek and the players had a good time. The picture sizes and detail have been a bit of a problem when it comes to showing an on-line game to the public and players alike, they could also do with some annotation to. How much more fun would it be to see the path of the sheep?? 

I wonder what else this system would work for?



Saturday, 23 August 2014

4Ground Terraced houses

A while ago, the club bought four of the 28mm pre-painted MDF buildings from 4Ground. We all liked the look of them, the fact that you cam take them apart floor by floor for easy use, that they are so light but strong, that they don't need painting.......They do need putting together though and a silly bugger to volunteer to do that turned out to be me.
Sigh.

Any road up, I spent some time working on them and thought I would share some thoughts. Firstly, they do look good once complete. The pic below shows them in mid game (WW1 action using Bolt Action rules) and whilst they could do with a fence or two to mark out gardens and stuff they work well. However, note the oddly placed chimneys, the fact that the first chimney is the wrong shape compared to the others. These are slight clues to the mental trauma that constructing these buildings can inflict.



The main issue is the rather unhelpful instruction sheet. Often, very often, the step-by-step picture guide supplied with the buildings is not your friend. It is not that unusual to find the picture you need next is instead a copy of a picture from further down the line; in one Case that pic was used three times! I spent quite a while looking at what I had made and trying to see where I had gone so badly wrong, until I discovered the whole 'wrong picture' thing. You see, the buildings are equally quite clever and complicated. There are separate pieces for inner and outer faces of most walls and, depending upon which building you are working on, single thickness walls for some areas too. You need to continuously orient yourself and the building when working on internal walls before you end up with an impossible mess. It can be all too easy to get the left hand wall confused with the right and then only discover that error when the important internal walls refuse to fit properly. By that time, of course, the glue is very unforgiving and the correction process is akin to open heart surgery...albeit without the saucy looking nurse and overly dramatic music. I would also suggest that the builder of such buildings would do well to have apile of clothes pegs at hand. These are very important for holding together the two piece wall sections whilst they dry. The use of ruber bands is shown in the guide pictures for some jobs but the pegs turned out to be a real asset, the more the better, in fact.

Other things, such as the stair-cases, have the most vague pictures and even vaguer instructions based on a single line of text between rows of pictures for other stages. The chimneys are a mini Chinese puzzle in themselves with no apparent logic until you sort of fall over the answer in a Krypton Factor-esque personal challenge. Oh, and it is rather easy to get the doors upside down, break off some of the more fiddly bits like door handles and inner wall lugs etc. But then, look at what you can end up with after all that effort....



....cool eh?! Even with the annoying errors that you can end up with, the buildings look great and are very detailed. The first building took me ages to complete, mainly as I had to spend so much time taking things apart again or decipher the cryptic clues. But, after that experience, you will have become quite adept by the next one and that is much easier. Remember, though, that each of the buildings is slightly different and you still need to keep an eye on your progress. Take a look at a few of the inside shots of the finished pieces.









In all I have to say that I do highly recommend these 4Ground buildings, they are worth the effort and represent good value for money. The row of houses we have here can be added to by buying more of the centre buildings, of which their are two types mainly based around colour (I think). I am certainly very happy to take a look at the other modern (20th Century) buildings they do now I have seen these and expand our useful collection....especially now that I have completed my apprenticeship!

Friday, 22 August 2014

Worminators...the next few moves.

Following the last post, where the idea for the Play-by-Facebook and Worminators were introduced, I have been encouraged to continue the game report. I must add that one of the problems I have had in running the game is me correctly interpreting the orders given by the players. There are no fixed distances or obvious landmarks that one might find in more traditional game and so the communication aspect is very important. This is a trial game, of course, and so such points are very helpful. Importantly, the two players and several observers seem to be enjoying the game so I think I am on the right track. I have also noted one or two issues with the rules that I now need to tweek, nothing major but, certainly things that will help game flow.

Anyhoo, lets get back to the action. We return to the start of round four. Taxes worm has been killed giving Team Drew Bader an advantage over Team Andrew Massoura......

ROUND FOUR

Twelfth move. A Supply Crate arrives! Oh my, oh my, oh my! What can I say? Clearly upset by the death of his compatriot, Taxes, Death worm took some revenge by attacking Inigo Montoya worm and causing a massive 61 points of damage! Death abseiled down next to Inigo, jumped over him and...simply shoved him westward. Inigo fell from the edge, taking 14 damage points from the fall, and landed on the mine. This exploded causing 35 points more and pushed Inigo far enough for him to fall into the small cavern next to Screw You...causing 12 more points of damage! Very impressive and not a little embarrassing for Inigo!  It is now Screw You's turn.




Thirteenth move. Screw You fires his Homing Missile at Death before moving as far west as he was able. The missile flew through the small opening at the top of the small cavern. It then attempted to make a right turn to hit Death but, it proved too tight a manoeuvre and it crashed into the roof of the large cavern. Oops. It is now Inigo's turn




Fourteenth move. Inigo Montoya worm moves east, jumping over the odd crater on the way. From his new position he fires a Bazooka into the area below Death worm slightly undershooting the target. The medium damage template didn't touch Death worm but he certainly felt the earth move! Ok, new round! Inigo starts this fifth round, this could be pivotal...





ROUND FIVE

Fifteenth move. Inigo places himself under Death worms position and again fires a Bazooka into the terrain beneath Deaths feet....long slithering body...whatever...the blast catches Death and throws him into the air where he flies back to earth with a bump! The blast and terrible fall inflict 41 points of damage on Death and leaves him on the floor of the large cavern. Inigo also used the remainder of his move allowance to get back to the wall of the cavern. Meanwhile, a second supply crate has arrived, this time at the top of the Wormery, section 2. It is now Screw You's turn.




Sixteenth move. Ooooooo! Unlucky Screw You. Screw You moves eastward to a better position and tries to throw a Banana Bomb at Death worm but, it fails to clear the narrow gap and instead lands in the corner of the small cavern. The four bomblets leap about but all stay away from Screw You, who looked more than a little worried as the explosions were a little close for comfort! No self inflicted injuries though, phew. It is now Death worm's turn.




Seventeenth move. Death worm, no doubt shaken by the violent actions of team Drew Bader, teleports out of the danger zone and onto the second supply crate at the very top of the Wormery terrain. Death worm is now the proud owner of an Exploding Sheep! Round six - Screw You worm goes first this round.



ROUND SIX

Eighteenth move. Screw You worm teleports to the remaining supply crate and gets.......20 points of health!! Screw You now has just 16 damage points...could be a life saver. Death worm is up next.




Nineteenth move. Death worm fires a homing missile at Screw You worm which has to negotiate a tight turn to reach it's target. The missile hits Screw You square-on and takes out a chunk of the Interactive Combat Wormery too! Screw You worm is injured by the missile and the resulting fall taking 46 points of damage. The recorded damage for each worm is: Death = 41 points, Screw You= 62 points, Inigo Montoya = 75 points. Inigo Montoya worm to go next and close this round!




Twentieth move. Inigo end s the round by firing a Bazooka round I to the terrain below Death worm. It takes out a chunk of Wormery but that's it. Death worm's turn.





ROUND SEVEN

Twenty first move. RELEASE THE SHEEP! Death worm let loose the first sheep of the game from the right hand edge of the large floaty bit. The sheep dropped onto the tiny block but couldn't reach the adjacent terrain piece, instead it fell to the bottom of the cavern before completingg it's forward move which took it into the wall behind Inigo worm and bounced back. The rules allow the player to detonate his sheep at any time 'after the initial launch distance' and so the independent adjudicator (not me btw) did the following. 

The entire sheep move was played out and the most advantageous point noted. The adjudicator detonated the sheep at that point. The huge explosion caused 43 points of damage to Inigo Montoya worm, killing him instantly. 

It is now Screw You worms turn, can he exact revenge?

Note the toombstone just visible beneath the explosion

Twenty second move. Slowly, slowly, catchy monkey...Screw You continues the work of under-mining Death worm!



And so we prepare to start round eight! Another worm has been killed leaving just one worm in each team. The Interactive Combat Wormery is getting a pounding, chunks being ripped out every move, but the game progresses well. Photographing  the action is a little tricky given the scale of the individual worms; I feel something is lost here. The name labels are all well and good but...well, maybe I need to work on this bit. That said, any more work to pictures would make the execution of this game a lot harder and slower. I think the beauty of the game by facebook is the relative speed, which suits a game like Worminators. More action to come of course!!!

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Worminators!....a Play-by-Facebook trial.

I have been suffering from a major case of Wargame Doldrums. The run up to and execution of Broadside left me in a real depresion where little if any wargame stuff happened at all for at least two months. I have had the odd quiet patch before, we all have I am sure, but this has been something very different; no interest, no spark, no direction....all very worrying and quite depressing. With the club Open Day (September 27th btw) edging ever closer I knew I had to do something to get myself moving again but nothing worked. I even promised myself something new and shiny for a Donnybrook project but, if I am honest, I really couldn't be bothered. I know, weird eh?

Anyway, this depression draged on until I had a chat with my mate Clint. He was chatting about playing a wargame by Blog, a modern version of play-by-mail, using my Blood, Bilge & Iron Balls rules. This, at last, seemed to get through to my shut down mind and got a few wargamey brain cells firing.....at last. Take a look at Clint's blog game, its early days but oozes promise http://clint-anythingbutaone.blogspot.co.uk/

I wondered if there was something that I could do in a similar vein, without appearing to steal his idea, and had one of the first wargame based light bulb moments I have had since before Broadside. A good while ago I wrote a set of rules for MJ Figures and their range of Worms, designed to play table top versions of the old PC and Playstation (etc) game. I could run a game at home for up to eight players although, I soon realised, given the turn based nature of the game (one worm moves and shoots at a time) it would be be a pain for the players to have to wait so long between turns. So, to speed it all up and keep it bubbling I would run the game as a play-by-facebook version! I started small using two teams of two worms with one player per team, Drew and Andrew form the club. This, as with Clint's game, would actually be a test of theory; it could all go horribly wrong. What appears below is the first three rounds of the game, further rounds will appear as further blog entries so as to not clog up your day with a long winded blog post! The text and pictures are taken directly from the Facebook posts so you get to see the game unfold. blow by blow.
(The game board, or 'Interactive Combat Wormery', is a 600mm wide polystyrene board. As worms dig or shoot the polystyrene is removed and so the game board changes turn by turn.)


The game begins!

Okie Dokie! Things are all set here at Worminator HQ and we now await word from the two players that they have read the rules and are ready to go.
The Interactive Combat Wormery has been prepared and the two teams of two highly trained Warrior Worms have been randomly placed. The first picture should show you, the viewer and players, the initial set up.
Team Andrew comprises worms 'Death' and 'Taxes'. Team Drew comprises worms 'Screw You' and 'Inigo Montoya Worm'. Each worm will be activated randomly once per round.

note the shape...see how it changes turn by turn
NEW RULE UPDATE - I have allowed each worm an abseil wire that will allow them to lower themselves, reasonably safely, down to lower levels. This option can be taken as part of the normal move distance and it is not a separate action like combat. Please note that you cannot use this to climb up things, only down.
The problem you will have of course is being unable to measure distances accurately so there may be a bit of a drop at the end of a downward climb! This could be enough to end your move so be careful!!

ROUND ONE

First move. Screw You Worm moved east to the edge of the small cavern and used his trusty pickaxe to cut out a 45' tunnel. He used the full cut allowance too and has ended his turn at the end of the tunnel by the new opening into the larger cavern above. NEXT WORM - TAXES.






 













Second move. Taxes inches forward and fires a bazooka at Screw You. The fired round was a slight over-shoot but caught the enemy in the blast causing 24 points of damage and pushing Screw You 4cm back down the tunnel. Once the smoke dies away you will notice a new hole in the interactive Combat Wormery.



Third Move. Ka-blam! More blood spilt as Death throws a hand grenade at extreme range...the 20cm range of grenades allows for the perpendicular drop found here. The grenade only just passed the narrow gap between the small floaty bit and the sticky up bit and dropped, neatly, onto poor Inigo Montoya Worm. The damage was fairly light though, 14 points, so Inigo will have plenty of time to plot his revenge! In fact, it is Inigo Montoya Worm's go now! That's lucky, Inigo, its your turn now.



Fourth move, the last of this initial turn! Inigo Montoya Worm moved to the west as far as he was able given the steep angle of the terrain. He then took a leaf from Screw You and used his pickxe to tunnel west at 45' for 10cm. He now sits at the top of the newly excavated tunnel....waiting.... Note the small crater where Inigo was at the start of the move; and so the landscape of the Interactive Combat Wormery changes.

 


ROUND TWO

Fifth move. Death dropped a Banana Bomb into the crater above Inigo Montoya Worms head! This weapon deployed four bomblets that bounced around randomly from the initial impact spot, these tore a large chunk out of the crater as three bomblets fell close together but, none of them actually touched Inigo! Miraculously, he survived unscathed with no damage....and now it is Inigo's move!



Sixth move. Inigo Montoya Worm jumped over a minor terrain obstacle and moved west to get a clear shot at Taxes Worm. Choosing the chaingun option, Inigo let rip at long range but managed, just, to hit the target! Taxes took 39 points of damage before Inigo used his remaining move allowance to retreat a little to a possibly safer distance. It is now Screw You worms turn. 



Seventh move. Screw You worm moved west, using his jump option to maximise distance, to reach the supply crate and gain some dynamite! This cam be used by either of Team Drew Bader worms. Overjoyed by his find Screw You fired wildly into the air to celebrate it is now Taxes turn!

 Alan Abbey's photo.

Eighth move. Taxes drops the Banana Bomb straight onto Screw You! The initial blast inflicts 12 points of damage but the other three bomblets spread far and wide missing Screw You completely although, he is probably now deaf and the Interactive Combat Wormery is taking a pounding in places! But, I am cleaning as I go so still no stingy smack on the back of my legs yet notice too that a mine has been introduced to a random location so no touchy touchy...of course it might be a proximity mine.....



So, we start round three and it is Inigo Montoya Worm to go first.

ROUND THREE

Ninth move. Turn three gets off to a blistering start as Inigo moves, blasts Taxes with a Chaingun and inflicts a massive 46 points of damage! He then slides off to the right of the iffie stick (inter-fibre friction fastening integral extender stick). Taxes Worm has now taken a total of 85 points of damage but team Drew Bader has used up two of their three Chainguns. Death worm is next to play.



Tenth move. Death worm throws a grenade at Inigo but narrowly misses so inflicts no damage! Screw You worm to play next. (sorry, no picture...I have no idea why....I hate my life.... ) 

Eleventh move. Screw You has the first kill!! His Homing Missile successfully negotiated a narrow gap and a tight turn to fall just short of the target, Taxes worm. The blast was more than enough though, it caused a fatal 32 points of damage and hurled the still twitching corpse up the hill where a tombstone marks the spot. 

 



With the death of Taxes worm the round ends as it would have been his move next. The fourth round begins with the twelfth move but that will be another blog post....assuming you want to hear about it, of course :)

I hope that this ramble has been of interest, even if it is only the idea of running a play-by-Facebook game. It has proved to be a lot of fun so far, even for me, and the wife is still happy as I have kept the bits of polystyrene off the floor....no stingy smack on the back of the legs for me......yet....

Monday, 12 May 2014

Broadside 2014 ready to go!

 That's it, that is the last piece of the puzzle in place, Broadside 2014 is ready to go (all bar the last shouty bits of course)! It has been one hell of a ride but once we get to this point it all starts looking very real.

I hope that these lists will excite you, there are some very cool names on board and I think 2014 is really going to be our year! Despite losing the small hall we have managed to keep Broadside at the same size as before with the number of games and traders we have. This is of course thanks to the brilliant clubs all getting behind the new game competitions and taking the small 6x5 tables. Take a look at the plan and let me know what you think. Keeping the space between traders and around the games tables is important to us, visitors comment on how much they like the openness of Broadside.

There is still a lot to do behind the scenes but that is always the way and I am working day and night to tie those loose ends. But, for now, a great milestone is passed!


T1 - Adler Miniatures
T2 - Armourfast
T3 - Brigade Models
T4 - Redoubt enterprises
T5 - David Lanchester Books
T6 - Fenris Games
T7 - Ainsty Castings
T8 - Cymbeline Games
T9 - Tablescape
T10 - Harfields Military Figures
T11 - ToleHaven
T12 - Realistic Modelling
T13 - Early War Miniatures
T14 - Shellhole Scenics
T15 - Col. Bills.com
T16 - Lesley's Bits Box
T17 - WargamesNkits
T18 - 7th Heaven Games
T19 - Monarch Millitary Books
T20 - SHQ Miniatures
T21 - Polly Oliver Castings
T22 - Red Knight Wargames
T23 - Wargames Emporium
T24 - Always Darkk
T25 - Warmill
T26 - Andy's Models
T27 - Royal British Legion
T28 - Wargames Foundry
T29 - Warlord Games
T30 - WW1 display by Historical Research Group of Sittingbourne
T31 - Pilum Painting
T32 - Gladius Game Arts
T33 - Essex Miniatures
T34 - Sphere Products
T35 - Wargame Solutions
T36 - PE2 Collectables
T37 - East Street Games
T38 - Engine Shed Toys

G1 - Gravesend Wargamers Club
G2 - Maidstone Wargames Society
G3 - Posties Rejects
G4 - Whitstable Wargames Club
G5 - Deal Wargames Club
G6 - Skirmish Group
G7 - Shepway Wargames Club
G8 - The Gamers Hub
G9 - Southend Wargames Club
G10 - Hornchurch Wargames Club
G11 - Friday Night FireFight Club
G12 - Gravesend Gamers Guild
G13 - South East Essex Milliatry Society
G14 - Medway wargames Society
G15 - East Grinsted Gamers
G16 - Rainham Wargames Club
CTK (Crush The Kaiser) Wargaming will also be providing a demonstration game using their WW1 rule set but are not part of the club competition.

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA  HA HA HA HA HA
. . . .
. . .
. .
.
. .
. . .
HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

Why do I put myself through this each year? Following the phone call I have just ended my wife has told me that I am not allowed to organise another Broadside. I think she found the fifteen minuets of dangerously hysterical laughter followed by another ten of sobbing too much to handle.

I now know why the ad did not go into the Miniature Wargames issue this month! After not receiving the call I was promised by young Alex, she who organises the advertising, I decided to chase her and see what was going on. Her phone was answered by another who was a little reserved once I explained the situation and passed me onto a higher manager. I explained to this third party all that had gone on (or hadn't) and she promised to get back to me too. I decided to call Henry Hyde himself, a passing acquaintance who loves Blood Bilge and Iron Balls BTW, and raise the issue with him.

It seems that lovely Alex did not raise the invoice for the ad despite her emails to me and so the ad was never passed along. Alex has also left her job and started another elsewhere so is unavailable for comment or summary execution. I know. This is the point at which the worrying laughter started.....I can still hear it you know, just there, on the edge of my senses...can you hear that?

Henry is now dealing with this personally and I have again sent him details and ads. I am sure things can be helped along via the web etc. In fact, Henry has just posted the ad onto the Wargames Illustrated facebook page. This will be a great help and go some way to filling the gap. Many thanks Henry! :) I knew I could rely on you! :)

Following this I have just confirmed that the ad in Wargames Illustrated is alive and well and in the shops today. Isn't that nice....I can still hear that laughing you know....its a sort of orange colour.....anyway. All I need to do now is fill one final stand and we are done-skie! Other than all of the other bits and bobs and stuff that still needs to be done of course.

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

Friday, 25 April 2014

Let down by Miniature Wargames


Bloody Miniature Wargames!

Organising a wargame show is bloody tricky at the best of times, always something to do or a metaphorical fire to put out. It is made all the bloody harder when 'Miniature Wargames Magazine' fails to publish the Broadside 2014 advert I placed!!!!!

This is not the first time we have been let down by the magazines and so I am extra careful to ensure everything happens in the right order at the right time. I even make a point of calling the relevant person to check things are okay. Imagine my disappointment of reading through the latest issue of Miniature Wargames...sent to me because I am running an ad, not because I subscribe, only to find a complete lack of sodding advert despite the promises!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This sort of thing is deadly for an event such as Broadside, we are still only in our fourth year and so advertising is a major issue. I can only hope that the one in the other mag goes through now....although I will now call them too to make damn sure!

Can I call on all of you to do what you can in helping to spread the Broadside word? All you bloggers and club members, Facebook users etc. please pass on the news and help make sure that we do not loose a single visitor. Thank you in advance for the help.