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Gaming, Painting & Modelling Hobby Blog

Gaming, Painting & Modelling Hobby Blog
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Gaming, Painting & Modelling Hobby Blog

This area of the website is my hobby blog, it contains articles about games that I have enjoyed playing together with paining and model making articles.


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Whiteout - Satellite Recovery mission

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On Friday night Doug, John and I got together for first playtest game of Richard Humbles 'Whiteout' Arctic survival rules.

Whiteout is a solo / co-operative play game of small team missions set in the Arctic Wastes where the environment is at least as big a threat as the opposition. A team normally contains 3-5 characters. Stats for common character types such as soldier, sniper, explorer are provided along with rules for generating your own unique characters with abilities and traits that you have chosen.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

As this was the first game we had played, we decided to use the standard character types provided with the rules. My character was the explorer. His character card is shown below.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

The character card has a box at each corner which represents what they can hold in their hands or carry in a rucksack. My character had the 'Pack Rat' trait so could carry an extra item in his rucksack. The team was also allowed to take two small, man hauled sledges. Each of these could carry 4 additional items. My explorer started the game with a Magnum, Knife First Aid Kit, Tent and Provisions. With hindsight, we should have taken far more provisions with us, as out on the ice things can go wrong and you can be holed up in a location for several days and without enough provisions morale & sanity soon start dropping.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

The game makes use of three decks of cards for maximum replay value of the scenarios. These are the terrain, encounter and equipment decks. At the start of the game the explorers start on a single tile (either 10" or 12" square), when they cross the tile edge onto a new one the top card from the terrain deck is flipped and that type of terrain is laid out. The explorer is moved 1" onto the tile and the top card from the encounter deck is flipped. The first tile we moved into contained the wreck of a crashed aircraft. This could have provided shelter for 2 and a piece of equipment but would have triggered a close encounter if we had explored it. As we had just started out and had taken all the equipment we could carry we decided to skirt around it.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

After crossing an expanse of open ice where we encountered a local dog sledge team, we moved on to discover an isolated hut. This looked like it could provide warmth and shelter until a polar bear lumbered into site from behind the hut’s steps.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

The polar bear was dispatched with a number of shots from the team’s rifle and assault rifle before it could charge us. This provided 3 units of provisions which we proceeded to trade with the scientists that we found inside the hut for some local knowledge. This revealed three unexplored tile locations, including a handy vantage point.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

Moving out from the scientist’s hut, we were ambushed by a lightly armed patrol of enemy soldiers. A fierce firefight broke out, which we eventually won. Unfortunately, my character took a serious wound in the exchange and slipped into unconsciousness.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

My comrades dragged me back into the explorer’s hut and we decided to hunker down there for the night. Despite the team’s best efforts to help me by spending provisions, I failed my night-time endurance check and failed to make it to morning.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

As we were in a hut full of scientists, we decided that I could play one of those as a player character for the rest of the game.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

Fate was however stacked against us. There are only 2 light patrol cards in the encounter deck, but when we moved out of the tile the next morning the second patrol arrived, and another firefight broke out. This time there were no fatalities on our side, but we took wounds and the psychological trauma of killing would take its toll when it came to the next nights sanity checks.

Whiteout Arctic Scenario

The following night saw us all weakened by the days exertions, when we were ready to move out the next morning we discovered that the satellite we had been sent to recover was in the next tile, but it had landed with in the enemies camp. The decision that we were all to weakened to attempt that encounter was unanimous, so reluctantly we admitted that 'Whiteout' had beaten us this time around.

However, the game had been a lot of fun, and we are very much looking forward to playing it some more.

Richard Humble's 'Whiteout' together with the Arctic Miniatures, vehicles, terrain and scenery are currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign that completes at 09:00 BST Monday 15th July.

Click here to take a look at the Whiteout Kickstarter campaign

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Pulp Alley: Arctic Horror

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A couple of weeks ago Lewis & I got together and played a couple of great games of Pulp Alley (using the 2nd edition rules).

As we are curruntly running a kickstarter 'Whiteout' that features miniatures, vehicles and terrain for gaming in the polar regions,, we decided that was where our Pulp Alley game should be set.

A cargo steamer The Reliant', chartered to carry some highly classified scientific equipment attempted to take a short cut through the 'North West Passage' before the pack ice closed up for the season. Unfortunately luck was not with the crew and the ice came earllier than expected and gripped 'The Reliant' in its chilling grip. Variouse competing scientific institutions have sent teams out onto the pack ice to retrieve it's cargo and today Dr Freinrich and Professor Yarlson have a rendevous with destiny onboard 'The Reliant'

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

We set up 3' square of Terra-Former modular terrain that included a Tramp Steamer trapped in pack ice as a center piece. The two areas of thin ice are dangerous terrain, so a peril must be overcome if moving over 6" on them. Rolling for scenario events I rolled up 'limited visability' so there must be a 'Whiteout' which limits shooting to 12" and Lewis rolled up and additional perilous area. This is represented by the four wolves at the side of the ship. We also decided that as it was so icy, climbing aboard was 'Perilous' and that the inside of the ship counted as cover and dangerous terrain as it was icy underfoot and there would be lots of cargo and furniture to provide cover.

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

We placed four minor plot points to represent clues, (tent, abandoned rucksac, and two supply markers). One of these clues had to be solved before attempting the major plot point (the scientific equipment).

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

I deployed my Sidekick, the harmless Assistant Walters' with a couple of Allies for protection on the mess deck of The Reliant. Lewis had taken a gang which he deployed on the Foredeck.

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

John Schmidt had been equipped with a long burst so he took up a covering position behind the mess deck forward door.

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

My leader, Dr Freinrich had early success, finding a clue inside the explorers tent. Lewis sent one of his Allies, Dawson over to try to slow him down.

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

Meanwhile, out on the ice pack, Lewis' sidekick Karl Johanson who was investigating the abandoned rucsack was horrified to run into the Yeti Boss (Level 3 Horror).

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

His leader, Professor Yarlson rushed to his assistance and managed to push it back to give Johanson a chance to escape.

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

Unfortunately the combination of the intense cold of the ice, the howls of the wolves  and the ghastly apparition to his front, quiet unhinged him and he spent the next few turns rushing around in a 'Blind Panic'.

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

Eventually Dr Freinrich makes it to 'The Reliant'

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

Pulp Alley Arctic Scenario

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Pulp Alley: Ski Pursuit

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A couple of weeks ago my son, Lewis came over to stay for a couple of days. We are both huge Pulp Alley fans, so of course planned to play a couple of new scenarios while we were together. I had just received the painted display miniatures back from the very talented Jon Atter for our new Ski Pursuit miniatures which are part of our Whiteout kickstarter which is running at the moment. The Ski Pursuit pack is based on one of my favourite Bond movies, 'The Spy Who Loved Me' which opens with some corny one liners and a high adrenaline ski chase.

 

 

 

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

We flipped a coin to see which league we would play. I got 'Bond' who is a single miniature 'Extraordinary Character; League. This is a new concept in the 2nd Edition Pulp Alley rules, you pay 5 points for the character and then can spend your remaining 5 points on either supporting characters or in this case on additional skills.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

The KGB Assassins League was formed of four characters with the league perks 'Well Armed' and 'Tenacious'.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

As usual for Pulp Alley the game was played on a 3' square table. Bond starts at one corner and to win needs to exit from the opposite corner (this is the major plot point). Four minor plot points were placed on the table, these represent places that Bond can perform a stunt (turn, fire weapon and do a backward flip etc.). Only Bond can attempt plot points. At the end of the game the KGB earn all plot points that have not been taken.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

Lewis deployed 3 assasins at the top of the slope and the fourth at the bottom.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

Bond gets off to a good start and heads to the first stunt location which he performs with style.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

The assasins move into position and a fierce firefight breaks out, Bond returns fire and the first assasin bites the dust.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

A fortune card allows Bond to deploy an unseen ally in contact with the enemy. This was a nice characterful touch, the ally took one of the assassins down but his comrade turns, shoots and takes him down.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

Bond breaks away, and heads down the slope.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

One of the assassins barges into Bond (fights a brawl), although Bond is good the multiple combat actions soon build up.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

Bond makes excellent progress on the second last turn he even has time to do another stunt (resolve a minor plot point) and only has six inches to travel in the last turn to exit the table, picking up the major plot point.

Pulp Alley Spy WHo Loved Me Scenario

However, Lewis and his KGB agents pull out all the stops and throw everything they have against him and he does not quiet make it. Bond takes two of the assassins down with him but does not recover. The KGB has one agent left on their skis at the end of the game, so Bond is taken prisoner!

We were unsure how this game would play. Would it be unbalanced with an 'Extraordinary Character', or would it be dull with just one character to activate? We did not need to worry, as usual with Pulp Alley, the balance was spot on, we both had a really enjoyable game, it was very exciting, and the game could have easily gone both ways right up to the last turn.  Bond had gained two minor plot points which meant the KGB had the major and two minor plot points for a convincing win.

Links:

Click here to take a look at the new 'Ski Pursuit Miniatures' in our Kickstarter Campaign.

Click here to check out the Pulp Alley games system

 

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Terra-Forming the Land of the Elf King

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The July 2019 issue of Wargames Illustrated contains a five-page article that I wrote about one of last year’s terrain building projects, building a demo board for Lucid Eye's Red Book of the Elf King miniatures game. Red Book of the Elf King (RBEK) is a game that really caught my attention and we have had a whole lot of fun playing the game within my gaming group and at shows. The rules were written by Rick Priestley (who also wrote Warhammer, WH40K, Bolt Action, Warmaster, Black Powder, Hail Caesar and many more). There do seem to be new fantasy skirmish rules every month but RBEK is refreshingly different. Set during an Elvish Civil War most forces are Elven (although supplements introduce Mortals & Trolls), each faction fields a leader (Thane) and 3-6 units of 3 figures (Companions).

Red Book of the Elf King Terrain Project

As Sally 4th is the official show stockist for Lucid Eye we wanted to build a great looking, easily transportable game to take to shows.

Red Book of the Elf King Terrain Project

The 4' square gaming area is constructed using Terra-Formers, a modular terrain system built using kits that build 1' square and 2' square terrain tiles with a wide range of profiles for rivers, streams, cliffs, hills, roads etc. and a design that incorporates strong rare earth magnets to hold the tiles together to align features perfectly and prevent in-game drift.

Red Book of the Elf King Terrain Project

The article in Wargames Illustrated details the build, step by step in great detail and is a useful guide for anyone else embarking on a modular terrain project.

Some of the features that I included were a waterfall cascading into a rock pool. The water in the pool is poured embedding resin, the waterfall is formed over a strip of clear plastic and ripples are formed from silicon sealer.

Red Book of the Elf King Terrain Project

The 2' square board features some wooded areas and a rocky depression. Rocks are formed from cast plaster of Paris, cast in Woodland Scenic moulds and sculpting using a reinforced plaster material called 'Sculptamould'.

Red Book of the Elf King Terrain Project

I like to build as many features as possible on 1' square tiles, as I have found that this offers the maximum flexibility for rearranging to make different layouts, however I decided to build a 1'x2' stream section as I wanted the stream to naturally flow around a rocky outcrop. The 2' x 1' tile was built by combining sides from both a 1' square and a 2' square tile.

Red Book of the Elf King Terrain Project

Trees are mounted singly on 40mm diameter bases and rings were built into the groundwork to hold the tree bases so that they blend in with the landscape.

Red Book of the Elf King Terrain Project

In the Sally 4th bridges range we have a nice lattice work bridge (in two widths) that I felt complemented the setting, so this was included with an indentation in the groundwork for a natural looking placement.

Red Book of the Elf King Terrain Project

I thought it would be nice to include a cave, maybe the home of a cave bear or lion. The cave is built using a standard corner hill Terra-Former module. The front face has an opening carved away from the polystyrene before the front is built up with plaster rock castings and Sculptamould.

Links for further information:

Terra-Former Photo Gallery - lots more photos of modular terrain for RBEK and all sorts of other games.

Terra-Former How To Videos - Videos showing you step by step how to build modular terrain boards

Terra-Formers - main catalogue page

Red Book of the Elf King - rules & miniatures

Lattice work bridge kits

Clear Perspex bases - because someone always asks about the bases we use to help the miniatures blend in with the landscape!

 

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The Wobbly Goblin Tavern - The ultimate bar room brawl location!

The Wobbly Goblin Tavern... a terrain project for D&D and fantasy skirmish games such as Saga Age of Magic, Thud & Blunder, Otherworld, Badgers & Burrows and Lord of the Rings.

This blog is going to chart the development of The Tavern and its surrounding enviroment. The tavern and accesories are all 3D printed. They are going to be set into modular terrain tiles, (Sally 4th Terra-Formers) and landscaped in with laser engraved cobblestones and other scenic effects.

A couple of years ago I backed Hobgoblin 3D's Kickstarter for the Wobbly Goblin Tavern. Their Kickstarter was the deal of the century £15 for the files to make a 3D Tavern of immense proportions (well at least 20" long). The Kickstarter took a long, long time to deliver but the results were certainly worth waiting for. The tavern has been designed as a snap together kit with hundreds of pieces and an instruction manual that runs to 107 pages. I have glued my model together with superglue and once it has been painted it will be embedded into a 2' square Terra-Former tile.

3d Printed Wobbly Goblin Tavern Terrain

I am planning tohave the Inn and the initial tile completed by the end on June 2019. After that I will expand the lgaming area to 3'x3' with the inclusion of outbuildings including stables and barn and some gardens and a courtyard area.

These first four photos show the ground floor which has been completed and base coated with household emulsion. I use Sandtex exterior masonry paint (Bitter Chocolate) as an undercoat and primer on all terrain projects. The floor and stone course has then been undercoated with 'Granite Grey' matt household emulsion.

3d Printed Wobbly Goblin Tavern Terrain

I could not resist trying out my existing bar room furniture and fittings for size. These are a real mixture of frre 3D objects from Thingiverse, old metal and resin castings that I have had knocking around for years and some plastic pieces from board games such as Dungeon Saga and Conan!

3d Printed Wobbly Goblin Tavern Terrain

The ground floor of the tavern has a very large common room area with a significant fireplace and chimney at one end. There is plenty of room for a bar in the centre and more tables at the far end. There is a seperate room on the ground floor, which I am going to use as the guest room for the 'posh' visitors who can afford to pay for a bed for the night rather than a blanket in front of the fire..

3d Printed Wobbly Goblin Tavern Terrain

On the first floor is the accomodation for the Inn keeper, family and servants. I'll cover that and the roof sections in next weeks update.

Update 14th June 2019 - Roof & Out Buildings Printed - Layout Decided

Tavern for D&D Fantasy Skirmish

Today is a huge milestone, as I have finally finished 3D printing and assembling the roof sections. Each of the 3 roof sections have 64 seperate tile sections which are suspended on a framework of 'A' frames in a very similar way to a real roof. This completes the build of the Inn itself, it just all needs to be painted. The wooden plank sectrions on the ground floor have been painted and have had two levels of drybrushing applied to bring out the texture of the wood. Hopefully you can see the difference between the staircase that has been painted and the first floor wood work which has just been undercoated.

Tavern for D&D Fantasy Skirmish

Here's a look at the first floor accomodation with the roof off. I love the wooden veranda. I can see all sorts of swashbuckling swordplay going on along it!

Tavern for D&D Fantasy Skirmish

I also decided that an Inn was going to need stabling for customers horses, so a did a bit of searching on the Internet and found this rather nice design for medieval / fantasy stables. The 3D design files are from Infinite Dimensions. It was not a company that I had heard off, but as the design file was in the region of £11 I thought that I would give it a go, and I am very pleased with the results. There are doors to go in the openings at the front, however the sides are open as well, so I get the feeling that horses would just wander out. I am therfore planning to add individual stalls and hay and water provision by hand to complete the equine provision.

Tavern for D&D Fantasy Skirmish

If you've got stabling then you are also going to need some storage for hay, straw, oats etc. The thatched store room as also from Infinite Dimensions. When I brought it I noticed that it was a bit to big for my 6" wide print bed. I scales each piece down to 92% of original size. I think it is still plenty big enough and looks in scale with the other buildings and 28mm miniatures.

Tavern for D&D Fantasy Skirmish

I do rather like the design of the store house. It has a lot of gaming potential. The thatched roof section lifts off to reveal a second floor / attic.

Tavern for D&D Fantasy Skirmish

The first floor has a staircase going up to the second floor / attic and a door to an exterior platform which would be ideal for loading / unloading from wagons. The ground floor has some nice clutter designed in as part of the single piece and the external staircase leading up to the first floor.

Tavern for D&D Fantasy Skirmish

I have decided that their will be a cobbled courtyard between the Inn and the outbuildings to tie them all together. To build this I have designed and laser cut / engraved some 1" square, 1" x 2" and 2" square cobbled sections. These have nice deep etching between the cobbles, so I am hoping that once they are embedded in the terrain boards and painted up they will blend well with the 3D printed elements. I could off course have 3D printed some 'Dungeon Tile' to use, but that would have added a couple of extra weeks of 3D printing time. The engraved tiles are not on website, but if anyone else needs them for a project, give me a shout and I'll see what I can do!

I have also decided on the final configeration on modular terrain tiles. The Inn will be 3' x 3' with it's out buildings. The main building is goiing to be set into a 2' x 2; Terra-Former Tile with a road running in front off it. The 2' tile will be edged to the right and at the back by five 1' x 1;' plain Terra-Former Tiles. Four of the 1' square Terra Former Tiles are going to have cobble stone sections embedded in them and the last is going to be left plain to have the Inns vegetable garden and Orchard moddeled on to it.

 

I'm hoping to get some more work done on this hobby project over the weekend, so check back next week for updates, or better still, sign up to our newsletter!

Links:

Terra-Former Terrain Gallery

Terra-Former Videos

 

 

 

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Pulp Alley: Albedo Away Team Mission

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Last Sunday (12th May 2019) Yorkshire was blessed with sunshine and light winds so we took the opportunity to take our gaming gear and set it up on the patio to top up the vitamin D while rolling some dice and having fun.

These circumstances do not occur that often, so we need to make the most of them.

 

 

I was joined by Mike Wilson and Doug Wright for another great game of Pulp Alley, using the new 2nd edition rules.

Doug and I are seasoned Pulp Alley veterans. It was the first time that Mike had played, although he had brough and read the rules last year.

Albedo Pulp Alley

The scenario was set in the world of Albedo, so each league was made up of Anthropomorphic Genetically Engineered Life Forms (or critters) for short. Since the critters developed memory and self awareness there society has been fixated on finding answers to the fundamental philosophical questions: Who are we? Why are we here? Who made us? For what purpose? This has been the catalyst for Albedo society’s quest for the stars. In this game three 'away teams' from competing factions have made planet fall on the planet Diazgon III to investigate a strange edifice from a departed civilisation, as sensors reveal that the most advanced life forms are primitive and aggressive Simians.

Albedo Pulp Alley

In Pulp Alley terms, the scenario played was 'Treasure Hunt'. Minor plot points were placed on the table to represent clues to how to unlock the doors to the mysterious tower where the ancient artifact was located. These were 6" in from the table and 6" away from other plot points.

Albedo Pulp Alley

The major plot point would be placed by the player whose character was the first to solve a minor plot point. To fit in with our story line, we decided that the Major Plot Point must be placed somewhere within the tower.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Scattered deployment was used to set up our Leagues on the table. Starting with the 'Director' each player takes turns placing one figure anywhere on the table (as long as they are at least 6" away from a plot point or enemy figure).

Albedo Pulp Alley

We decided that the large jungle areas, the rocky paths up the cliffs and the inside of the building were dangerous terrain which meant that they only became perilous if you ran (moved more than 6") through them. The patches of carniverous plants and the piranha infested river was perilous terrain, whatever speed you travelled through it!

Albedo Pulp Alley

The critters were surprised to find their investigations hampered by a tribe of belligerent simians. Although in the Albedo universe there are 165 species of genetically modified critters none of them are based on monkey’s apes or pigs. A little known piece of Albedo trivia!. The simians were played as wandering perilous areas. At the end of each turn a D8 was rolled to determine direction and distance for eacj model to be moved. If a character moved into or activated within a small blast template centrered on the model they had to pass a random peril.

Albedo Pulp Alley

My Otter heavy league comprised of Leader Kao Kazo, two Sidekicks Arka Chanlu and a cat character Felras Lacal and lastly another female otter ally called Aka Bowinmi. At the start of the game my league split with Felras heading to investigate a clue near the foot of the cliff and Kao and Arka heading for a clue at the front door of the tower. Not quiet sure what Aka is doing, but she seems to be attracting a lot of incoming fire from the other leagues.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Aka goes down, but she takes her assailant with her.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Felras turns away from the clue that he was investigating to return fire against the lappine who had opened up against him. Felras does not like to be disturbed. He uses his quick shot ability, sprays and prays with 5D6 and his prayers are answered. Bunny hits tyhe dust (and rolls down the cliff dramatically).

Albedo Pulp Alley

Meanwhile, the main action is going on at the front of the mysterious alian structure. Kao is struggling with the clue, he manages to get it half figures out. Arka moves up to help and to protect his back at Erma and some of her buddies are also trying to muscle in on the action.

Albedo Pulp Alley

At the far corner of the table, down by the piranha infested river Mikes Leader Charha (beret wearing fox) has discovered a clue and prepares to fend off a Simian attack. Dougs leader Zhdibo, unfortunately has got stuck in the Piranha infested river thanks to some mean Fortune Card play from Mike.

Albedo Pulp Alley

The action hots up outside the main doorway. As all of Mikes League (bar the leader, Charha) attempt to stop Kao from completing the clue.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Charha is assailed from all sides. Doug sends some of the supporting cast up to give covering fire to his leader as he battles with the piranha fish.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Felras had an unlucky moment... not only was the clue he had spent so long trying to solve a 'Red Herring', but Zhibo made it out of the river, joined forces with one of his followers Zhbo to gun down Felras in a hail of gunfire.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Felras pulled his act together and headed for the cliff where the new clue had appeared, taking out Zhbo for good measure.

Albedo Pulp Alley

However, before he could solve it Dougs Leader Zhdibo shot him in the back.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Meanwhile back at the tower, Kao had solved the clue, unlocked the door and ran up the stairs passing the perils on the way. The major plot point was in sight!

Albedo Pulp Alley

The closing scenes provided some unexpected twists. Mikes leader, Charnha proved to be a bit of a Ninja. pulling off a climb up the wall of the tower and squeeze through the window that stretched over two turns with accompanying perils. Charha was then blocking the route around the balcony to the plot point, so Kao was oblidged to leap across the gap. This peril was passed. A sniper also took a few shots at him before he eventually solved the puzzle to claim the major plot point, on the last activation of the last turn of the game!

Albedo Pulp Alley

Down at the entrance Arkha had been bravely defending his back for turn after turn, but was eventually felled im melee by the brutish Dean.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Here are the character cards for our Leagues. The top one is my League, led by Kao Kazo the Otter. The next League is Doug's led by a feline EDF officer, Zhdibo.

Albedo Pulp Alley

Mike's League led by the foxy ninja Charnha and co-starring the iconic Erma and Toki.

Albedo Pulp Alley

The character cards are all pre-generated Pulp Alley character cards. I took photographs of the miniatures, printed them and cut them up and then before we started the game, we drafted our leagues in a similar way that you would draught in a collectable card game. We started with leaders and went round the table in a clockwise direction taking it in turns to select a leader from the deck. We then draughted sidekicks going back around the table in an anti-clockwise direction until all the sidekick characters had been selected. This worked very well. As usual Pulp Alley provided a fun and exciting afternoons entertainment, with everything to play for right down to the last activations of the last turn.

 

Links for further information:

Pulp Alley Rules

All of the miniatures are from the Albedo Miniatures range.

The terrain boards are built using theTerra-Former modular terrain system.

Miniatures are based on Sally 4th clear bases.

The library / tower is 3D printed from a design available from Printable Scenery.

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Albedo ACP Participation Game Partizan 2019

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Last friday we had a playtest of our Albedo ACP164 participation game that we are putting on at Partizan next weekend, (Sunday 19th May).

We are very lucky as the game is being run by Mike Wilson who has written the ACP164 Source Book and Campaign Supplement. Mike has recently returned to the UK after living in Australia for the last 35 years, Mike has spent the last week staying with us which has given us the opportunity to get a wide range of games played.

 

Our Partizan game is called Block Wars. The action takes place within the confines of a single 'Hab Block' Each faction controls a single floor and are looking to increase their turf.

Albedo Block Wars Partizan 2019

Their are 3 methods of teavelling between floors, and they each have their own perils.

Albedo Block Wars Partizan 2019

Firstly, there is the main stairwell, unfortunately this is normally well guarded by some trigger happy critter, waiting to get a reaction shot off as soon as you are half way down the stairs.

Albedo Block Wars Partizan 2019

The second option is the fire escape at the side of the building.

Albedo Block Wars Partizan 2019

The third and most entertaining option is using a line with a grappling iron to either absail down to a lower level, or climb paw over paw to a higher level, and then leap over the balcony to melee who ever is in the reception party at a bit of a disadvantage.

Albedo Block Wars Partizan 2019

Victory points are awarded for territory held, territory gained and eliminating the enemy characters who are equiped with the sinister suitcases.

Albedo Block Wars Partizan 2019

We played the game through twice. As it is a participation game at a show, the plan is to play for an hour and then count up the victory points. The colored tokens represent rooms controlled by a particular faction. Mike, Doug and I had a great game and really enjoyed the scenario and look forward to sharing it with any one who is at Partizan on Sunday.

Full details of the Albedo ACP164 miniatures range can be found by clicking here.

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The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th's Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

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The Recapture of Umbar, Fourth Age of Middle-Earth

A wargame using the fourth (‘One Rule Book’) version of Games Workshop’s Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle Game, depicting an imagination of the seizing back of the Corsair port of Umbar from the last remaining forces of the dark lord Sauron’s army.

King Aragorn, Elessar, sovereign of the Reunited Kingdom of Gondor and Arnor, leads a mighty host southwards. Riding with him are his friends and allies from all the fair races of Middle-Earth – Elves, led by Prince Legolas of Ithilien; Dwarves, led by Prince Gimli of Aglarond; his kinsman and loyal Prince Imrahil of Dol Amroth; King Eomer of Rohan, and two diminutive but brave Hobbits of the Shire, Knights of Rohan and Gondor. Borne by land and sea, the host has besieged the walled city-port of Umbar and prepared an escalade from the water and against the outer walls. Inside the city, the galley slaves – some of whom hail from the very lands now marching to liberate them – stand ready to rise up against their oppressors.

Facing them are the dregs of Mordor, the remnants of Harad and Rhun, the surviving Corsairs. Even trolls and half-trolls, their loyalty firm through dark magicks and habit, defend this last bastion of darkness. The Sultan of Umbar, the Fleet Lord of the Corsairs and other fell Men are torn between the desire to flee by sea to a new lair or to hold firm and fight, leaving behind tears in the camps of their enemies and songs of their great stand.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

It was early in the Fourth Age, when the free and newly-liberated peoples of Middle-Earth set out to reclaim lands long lost to the forces of the dark lord Sauron. One such domain was the port of Umbar, far to the south of Gondor, that had once been a thriving possession of the mighty kingdom of men. As the realm faded, so evil crept in and for long has Umbar been a port rules by bandits and pirates. The infamous Corsairs have ravaged Gondor’s coastline  for centuries until their demise at Pelargir in the last days of the Third Age but now the port is but a last desperate refuge for the minions of Sauron as they await their fate.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

Nemesis approaches in the form of Aragorn, King Elessar, ruler of the reunited kingdom of Arnor and Gondor, come to bring this former jewel into the kingdom once more. Riding with him is King Eomer, ruler of Rohan and staunch friend and ally. Lending their support are Prince Legolas of Ithilien and Prince Gimli of Aglarond, once more competing in martial competition. A combined assault on the fortified port has been planned, with boats full of warriors crashing through the harbour entrance and a formal escalade over the city walls at the same time. A third front is planned with the revolt of galley slaves from their compound in the ruined Old City, still recognisable as Gondorian architecture amongst the sandstone dwellings of the Corsairs, aided by Swan Knights from Dol Amroth breaching the compound walls.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

The defenders are a rag-tag bunch – survivors of the battles for Minas Tirith and Cair Andros, refugees from Mordor, bodyguards for fat sultans who sent others to do their bidding. With the troops having nowhere to run they prepare to sell their lives dearly, while rich merchants ready a large ship to break the blockade and flee.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

The game started with ramps crashing down on the city walls and troops pouring onto the battlements. At the same time the fleet of boats made its way into the harbour. Two boats contained Dwarves, the speed of the rowers compensating for their short legs. Elves manned another craft, Legolas standing proud in the bow with his longbow and confident of outscoring Gimli, who needed a box to see over the hull! The final craft contained Aragorn himself, leading from the front as ever. No fool, his boat had a large crossbow in the bows to clear a path. Across the siege tower ramps Rohirrim and more Elves surged forward, with the gates breached by a mighty ram and ladders permitting more access to the walls.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

The port was ever ready for a counter-attack, with high walls around the city and stretching out into the harbour. Orcs crewed Siege Bows in the towers, able to shoot massive bolts into man or vessel alike. Half Trolls and elite Haradrim warriors awaited the invasion on the jetties while Easterlings stiffened the line with their heavy armour and long spears. Ominously the dock managers had released cave and Mordor trolls from their usual duties of loading ships. With some clad in armour these brutes also awaited the forces of Light.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

One Dwarves craft turned aside in order to clear the long breakwater but the other three vessels raced for the jetties. Prince Imrahil led his knights into the city, fending off rapidly-mobilising defenders but the ill-equipped galley slaves struggled against shieldwalls of Easterlings. Cave trolls guarded the shattered gates while heroes from Rohan and Ithilien strove to force them back. There were archers in profusion, with the Elves having accuracy and punch while Evil had the mighty Siege bows and poisoned tips. Those troops not engaged in hand-to-hand combat exchanged missiles and thinned the ranks of the reserves.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

As is often the case, siege ladders proved more dangerous to those ascending than the defenders but progress was made from the ramp of the tower. The Dwarves were the first ashore and ran into the half-trolls with their multiple attacks and great strength. Gimli was soon beset but he loved being outnumbered. He was losing his combat score against Legolas when the latter was specifically-targeted by a visiting young general who disliked Elven princelings and shot everything he had at him! Fare well, Prince of the Woodland Realm.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

The fiefdom troops continued to beat back all opposition, even as the slaves were pegged back, and Evil started to pull back deeper into the city. The surviving Elves intercepted the merchant ship before it could escape and cleared the main wharf of Corsairs. A vicious battle for the narrow bridge was won by Elrond’s sons but at a cost in time. Aragorn won his fights but the jetty was so congested that again progress was slow. The sun set and the battle ended with an inconclusive result on both walls and jetties, but the incursion of Prince Imrahil and the greater prowess of the great Heroes of the West would surely have prevailed.

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

Lord of the Rings SBG The Siege of Umbar Sally 4th Participation Game at Hammerhead 2018

Links for further details:

Terrain is built using 12" square modular terrain boards using kits from Sally 4thTerra-Former Range

The Sultans Palace & surrounding Souks are from Exotic Locations Range

The Middle Eastern Style Buildings are from Outremer Range

Click here for Harbour Jetties, Platforms & Arched Bridges

Siege Towers, Battering Rams & Siege Ladders from Sally 4th Siege Range

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Seven Days to the River Rhine a first game

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Yesterday (28th April 2019), Doug and I had our first game of 'Seven Days to the River Rhine' the new 'Cold War gone Hot' ruleset published by Great Escape Games. Both Doug and I had played 1980's Cold War games before wusing Cold War Commander, WRG and Cold War Commander rules amongst others so we had the miniatures and the terrain all ready to go. Seven Days to the River Rhine (7DTRR) is a battlegroup level set of rules. A model vehicle represents a single vehicle and a stand of infantry represents a section of infantry or a support weapon such as Milan or a Mortar.

We played using 6mm miniatures, I think they are from Heroics & Ross, from several decades ago. We played on a 6' x 6' gaming area. I like 6mm scale for Cold War gaming as I feel it gives a good representation of troop density and ranges.

seven days to the river rhine scenario

My cold war miniatures are mounted on 40mm square bases. Each bases has a 10mm x 40mm info strip on it that gives the type of unit, weapon and armour stats, breakpoint and morale values. I find that this helps to make the units stand out,. This is quiet important with small models that are camoflaged to blend in with the surrounding terrain. The bases is also used as reference point for the direction that unit is facing and arcs and flanks.

seven days to the river rhine scenario

The mission was quiet ambitious for an introductory game. 2 QUEENS Battlegroup were tasked with holding the two towns (top left). To achieve this mission they fielded 2 Platoons (6 bases) of Infantry, 1 Troop of Chieftan 5 (3 x MBT), 2 x Milan Posts, 2 x Stricker & 1 x Scorpion from Brigade Recce.

seven days to the river rhine scenario

3 Guards Motor Rifle Regiment had a primary objective of capturing the towns with a follow on objective of capturing the road exit points. To achieve this they deployed a Motor Rifle Company (10 x Infantry mounted in BTR70) and a Tank Company (10 x T72A) with a Platoon on Regt Recce (3 x BRDM).

seven days to the river rhine scenario

2 QUEENS Battlegroup OC located his command post in main town. Armoured element deployed at front edge of woods. Infantry and Milan posts dug in around edges of wood and built up areas across the Battlegroups frontage.

seven days to the river rhine scenario

One of the key strengths of 7DTTRR is its command pool / activation mechanism. Each fighting element in your force (apart from attach helicopters) gives you a command point. Both sides role off for initiative. The winner goes first. You spend a command point to activate a unit or to perform a morale check. The first activation of a unit happens automatically. You can attempt to activate a unit multiple times, but for each subsequent activation the unit needs to roll more than the number of command tokens already allocated to that unit. In this case, the Chieftan to the left would need 3+ and the one on the right 2+ on a D6 to activate. Once you declare an activation, your opponent can spend a command token to attempt to interupt. There chance to do this is dependent what they are reacting to and how many tokens they have. This is rolled on a D6. a 6 is always a success and also makes you the active player.

In order to be able to play the game I made myself a set of NATO & WARPACT Command and hidden deployment tokens, which I have added to our tokens & templates page in case anyone else is interested in them.

seven days to the river rhine scenario

3 GUARDS MRR advanced on 3 axis with a platoon of tanks in lead followed by infantry in APC's. This attack is looking stalled. First two T72's are destroyed and the 3rd has two morale markers on it. When you fire against an enemy target you roll to hit. This is based on quality of unit and tactical modifiers. If you hit you inflict a morale marker automatically as long as your weapon was capable of penetrating armor. You then roll a D10 and add your weapons penetration value. If your score is equal to armor the target gains maximum number of morale tokens, if it exceeds armor value the vehicle is destroyed.

seven days to the river rhine scenario

On 2 QUEENS left flank heavy casualties are sustained by the relentless Soviet attack.

seven days to the river rhine scenario

3 GUARDS MRR also suffer casualties, particularly when caught in the flank by a well sighted Milan detachment sighed on the spur of the hill.

seven days to the river rhine scenario

Our first game ended with a marginal British win. The Soviet attack had suffered heavy losses and had not entered there primary objective.

Both Doug and I are looking forward to playing more of this game in the future. Our first game was pretty slow as there was a lot of rules reading, discussing and checking stats. The key part of the game is deciding when and how to spend your limited supply of command points to most influence the battle, and speed with this will come through playing the game.

Links:

Seven Days to the River Rhine Rules

NATO & Warsaw Pact Command & Hidden Deployment Tokens.

 

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Pulp Alley - Vice Alley Western Campaign episode 2

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Race Against Time

Click here to download a PDF of the Pulp Alley Character Cards for these Leagues

For the 2nd game in our Vice Alley Old West campaign we moved out of town to a small mining settlement down by the creek.

It was a race against time, following a tip off that illegal moonshine was being distilled down by the creek my vigalante leage were determined to gather enough evidence to close the operation down. It looked like they had arrived at just the right time as a large wagon was being unloaded in the centre of the settlement. T o gather sufficient evidence my leader Marshall 'Leather' Durham needed to overcome three sets of perils and challenges. My league was made up of four sidekicks, so Marshall Durham was nominated to act as the leader for this game.

 

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

Four minor plot points were deployed around the table more than 12" away from other plot points. These included a nervous youth a fiesty old woman, a mysterious envelope and a leather bound journal.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

The settlement was home to a number of critters that provided some movable dangers. These included snakes, geese and dogs. Each random plot point moved D8" in a random direction each turn.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

The Marshall starts a careful investigation of the wagon and its contents while Wilson 'WIld Hog' Hurley, Ralph 'Wild Boy' Hicks, Bernard 'Glory' Barnes and a young fellow who said he was handy with a 6 gun that they picked up in a bar, fan out to provide a defensive perimeter.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

Once the lead started flying, the young lad from the bar was the first to take a slug. 'Aint it always the way, that the nameless minions die young!

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

Hicks heads off towards the creek to have a word with the nervous youth, who seems to have attracted the attentions of a snake of truely epic proportions.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

The flock of geese head towards 'Wild Hog' Hurley, while the Marshall is struggling to make much progress on evidence collection. This is a tough assignment for a league made up of sidekicks without a leader level character.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

Down at the creek, Hicks is in good form, after beating the giant asp into submission he turns his attentions on the nervous youth who is all to happy to tell him everything he knows.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

Dougs criminal syndicate closes in, a fierce gunfight develops and his henchmen approach the wise old women (with the blunderbus) in the hope of some extra information.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

Despite using the tethered horses as cover, Hurley goes down in a blaze of glory.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

... and as if the assignment was not hard enough already both the gianst snake and the flock of geese are unexplainably drawn to the Marshall, the wagon and the clues.

Pulp Alley Western Gunfight

Six turns came and went and unfortunately the vigalantes failed to gather the evidence that they needed.One victory point was gained for solving the 'nervous youth' plot point, bringing there influence / reputation up to five.

However, as always Pulp Alley was a great game to play, however badly you do, it is always a lot of fun and it works very well in a western setting.

Links for further details:

The terrain boards are all made using Sally 4th Terra-Formers. These are 12" modular terrain tile kits with a wide range of profiles for hills, streams, roads and many more features together with strong rare earth magnets embedded in the sides to hold them firmly together. Click here for more information on Terra-Former terrain.

Pulp Alley is a set of skirmish rules that can be used for encounters between 2-30 figures per side in any enviroment from the stone age to the space age. Click here to find out about Pulp Alley.

Artizan have a great range of 28mm Western miniatures. Click here to take a look.

 

 

 

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