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  • Well folks, I've been running around like crazy the past few days, and since last week's round-up was well-received (and allowed me to get a lot of my gaming thoughts and opinions crammed into one article), I thought I would follow suit this week with some more not-quite-ready-for review discussions about stuff I've played recently.  Next week--The Big Yomi Review, I promise.

  •  

    Tonight my friends I am pleased to announce a special guest writer for this very special Dice Temple post — the acclaimed Dr. Emmett Brown. So please, sit back, relax, and enjoy this one of a chance opportunity. As one of the greatest minds of our time, a specialist in the bending of space and time, analyzes one exciting game: Legacy Gears Of Time. Without further adieu…..Dr. Emmett Brown.

    -DiceTemple Andrew

    p.s. There is a Delorean with its lights on in the parking lot.


    Good evening all. Tonight we will be traversing through the malleable dimension known as time. Together, exploring each age, we will marvel as other ‘time-travelers,’ as they are colloquially known, compete to adjust and influence the lineage of technology itself to their own personal gain. These Antiquitects play a dangerous game, but the rewards are great, for an eternal Legacy awaits.

    In this competition Antiquitects will use several actions to achieve greatness. The first and foremost strategy to do so involves “establishing” technologies along the timeline (represented by segments on the board in the case of Legacy). This involves traveling to different segments of time, and paying through discards to place a technology from the Antiquitects hand in that segment. The catch however lies in that many technologies have prerequisites that must exist previously on the timeline to gain the Antiquitect legacy (legacy is scored as points at the end of each of the four rounds of play that make up the game). And so these time-travelers will be desperately trying to both establish advanced technologies as well as their basic predecessors. 

    This goal is complicated by two main factors. The first is fate cards, which are few in number but very powerful. They can undermine opponents, allow for more than the allotted number of technologies to be established in a given time segment, or do any number of other advantageous things. The second complicated factor is the use of player’s influence. As the rounds of Legacy progress, each player will gain more and more influence cubes which they may place on their or opponents technologies to take control of them. When done strategically, this can tip the scales quite heavily.

    All in all Legacy: Gears of Time is a fascinated competition, even to myself as one who has time-traveled as much as the next Antiquitect. It is a fun, medium weight way to spend an hour or two, and the thrill of molding time never does lose its luster (and neither will the board or card art in this game). So if you would, join me Emmett — yes please call me Emmett — and we will travel to experiences in realms you have never dreamed. Thank you for sitting through my lecture today. Happy Traveling.

    Sincerely,

    Dr. Emmett Brown

    ————-

    Thanks a ton to Floodgate Games for sending me a copy of this great game! Readers, check out Legacy, as well as its new expansion on Kickstarter - Legacy: Forbidden Machines. Check out the link below!

    Legacy: Forbidden Machines

    —————

    Game Designer: Ben Harkins

    Artists: Shamas Demoret, Steve Maggart

    Publisher: Floodgate Games

    Year: 2012

    ----------

    Thanks for reading Dice Temple! More reviews at dicetemple.tumblr.com. Questions, concerns, and review inquiries can be sent to maloney_andrew_t(at)yahoo.com.

  • Sealed I don't rightly KNOWhow many of YOU here had been "offended" with the direct exclusion for anything of YOURS at BGG, nor if you were to care about this matter in the least or at ALL, whilst myself had figured upon a 'solution' for such. I'm quite *tricksy* that 'way' eh?
    Wink
  • space_hulk1.jpg
  • Squad Leader

    I recently traded away my A Game Of Thrones game and expansions. Although I enjoyed playing it, it only saw the light of day twice and my copy of A Storm of Swords sat unpunched for over a year.

    I love gaming but my family doesn't, so rather than trying to convince them to play UNO unsuccessfully (the only game my youngest wants to play) I decided that I wanted to do more solo gaming.

    A fellow gamer told me about his enjoyment of Squad Leader, over a game of Combat Commander.   Not having a regular opponent to play CC against, my desire to learn more about WWII wargaming and the fact that I could do this solo made SL a perfect fit in my collection. 

    It seems like a pretty deep system, but I look forward to playing something new.

    In another thread our fellow F:ATtie Thaadd mentioned that she's doing a blog in which she is to upload at least 1 photo everyday for 100 days.  I made a comment to Mikoyan about not having my own blog and Thadd busted me by reminding me that The Fort has it's very own blog sections (duh! I forgot I had two entries already.) She then challenged me to take 100 game photos. I thought...."what the hell".

     To be realistic, I doubt I'm gonna do 1 a day but I'll try to do it at least once per week with a short write-up of some sort. I'm not promising anything spectacular but maybe, just maybe I can give you all a little glimpse into my world of gaming.

     

  • In another thread our fellow F:ATtie Thaadd mentioned that she's doing a blog in which she is to upload at least 1 photo everyday for 100 days.  I made a comment to Mikoyan about not having my own blog and Thadd busted me by reminding me that The Fort has it's very own blog sections (duh! I forgot I had two entries already.) She then challenged me to take 100 game photos. I thought...."what the hell".  So here I am  with my first entry. 

     To be realistic, I doubt I'm gonna do 1 a day but I'll try to do it at least once per week with a short write-up of some sort. I'm not promising anything spectacular but maybe, just  maybe I can give you all a little glimpse into my world of gaming.

     #1

     

    Simulated to represent the previous evening's winning move.

     

    I played Napoleon's Triumph for the first time with my Geekbuddy  Ramito  on Friday night.  It was pretty much back and forth with Ramito (the Alllies) wearing me down into the third last turn of the Dec.2 scenario.

    I was down to my last morale point (as the French), with the Allies up 4 points.  On my turn as a last ditch attempt I made an attack by road with my 2 strength cavalry into the south of Buntowitz. The Allies revealed a two strength infantry unit which promptly retreated (losing 1 strength) to the east of Buntowitz. Knowing I could run those bastards down I continued the attack. Unfortunately for the Allies they had all three of their units in that locale blocking different approaches. My attack  eliminated the Inf. and caused losses from each of the three infantry units in their  approaches to reduce the Allies' morale from 3 to  -1 for the victory. It was fucking sweet!

    Even though it took about 3.5 hours, if we had the time I would have set-up, switched sides and had another go. This game is that fucking good. Brain-burner ? Mmm....sure, but I was buzzing from what had been happening during that entire session.

    It would be a crime not to do this again. Soon.

  • In another thread our fellow F:ATtie Thaadd mentioned that she's doing a blog in which she is to upload at least 1 photo everyday for 100 days.  I made a comment to Mikoyan about not having my own blog and Thadd busted me by reminding me that The Fort has it's very own blog sections (duh! I forgot I had two entries already.) She then challenged me to take 100 game photos. I thought...."what the hell".

     To be realistic, I doubt I'm gonna do 1 a day but I'll try to do it at least once per week with a short write-up of some sort. I'm not promising anything spectacular but maybe, just  maybe I can give you all a little glimpse into my world of gaming.

    My usual nightly habit. I'll play a couple games before heading to bed. It helps to fill in the gaps of PBEM games.  I'm kinda hooked on it.

  •  In another thread our fellow F:ATtie Thaadd mentioned that she's doing a blog in which she is to upload at least 1 photo everyday for 100 days.  I made a comment to Mikoyan about not having my own blog and Thadd busted me by reminding me that The Fort has it's very own blog sections (duh! I forgot I had two entries already.) She then challenged me to take 100 game photos. I thought...."what the hell".

     To be realistic, I doubt I'm gonna do 1 a day but I'll try to do it at least once per week with a short write-up of some sort. I'm not promising anything spectacular but maybe, just maybe I can give you all a little glimpse into my world of gaming.

    Rulebooks

    Alright I don't give a fuck what anyone says but I have a binder of rules I downloaded and printed out for various games I have a high interest in purchasing.  And yes I will read one (or two) of these before going to bed or if I have time while eating breakfast.

    I use to have a wicker basket that I would put these print outs in until the bin began to overflow. So I thought by putting them in a binder it not only reduces the mess (to my wife's relief)  but it also forces me to be selective in what I keep. For example after I bought BSG and Combat Commander, I recycled their printed-out counterparts. 

    That being said I still have the rules for games I already own like Dune and Titan. Titan, mainly because I play a lot online and I like to have an accessible reference close at hand and Dune 'cuz it also has Starbase Jeff's FAQS, that I like to read now and again.

    There are also rules for games that I'm still deciding on, ( Clash Of Monarchs and Successors, I'm lookin' at you)! 

    Current rules for:

    Hannibal: Rome vs Carthage ( the first 10 +page game manual I ever read.) Plus a strategy card list (OWN)

    Commands & Colors: Ancients...er just cause (OWN)

    Antiquity: The theme, unforgiving, unique gameplay and graphic design fascinate me. (LIKE TO OWN)

    Space Junk: An okay space collection PnP Euro.

    Clash of Monarchs: Can't seem to get into it (THINKING ABOUT IT)

    Successors: I love the various victory conditions for this Ancient CDG. (LIKE TO OWN)

    Red Star Rising:First foray into a more complex non-CDG WW2 wargame.  (THINKING ABOUT IT)

    Titan: Already mentioned why.

    Bonaparte at Marengo: The first game that made me aware of the brilliant game designer Bowen Simmons. The closest thing to ever owning the game. (LOVE TO OWN)

    Twilight Struggle:Reference to if I play online again (hint hint Space Ghost) (OWN)

    Origins: Another fucking crazy ass design that I'd love to try but I know it would never hit the table with my current group. ( LOVE TO OWN)

    And last but maybe least:

    Pandemic:Would love to play this with the family but I don't think it's gonna fly.(THINKING ABOUT IT)

    Missing in Action> Here I Stand: Currently in my gym bag as I'm playing an online game with some F:ATties.

    There you go. What's on your shelf or in your satchel? I know I'm not the only one.

     

  • In another thread our fellow F:ATtie Thaadd mentioned that she's doing a blog in which she is to upload at least 1 photo everyday for 100 days.  I made a comment to Mikoyan about not having my own blog and Thadd busted me by reminding me that The Fort has it's very own blog sections (duh! I forgot I had two entries already.) She then challenged me to take 100 game photos. I thought...."what the hell".

     To be realistic, I doubt I'm gonna do 1 a day but I'll try to do it at least once per week with a short write-up of some sort. I'm not promising anything spectacular but maybe, just maybe I can give you all a little glimpse into my world of gaming.

    Awhile ago I saw a gorgeous dice tower on BGG. Up until that point I kinda felt "meh" about them, too many fantasy, dragon, lego, ASL, medieval castle-themed towers for my liking. I really didn't see the point of having one when a box lid could do the trick.  I also thought why would you want this gaming accessory to draw focus away from your game (I'm a visual person, so some things come down to aesthetics for me)? 

    But, all that changed when I saw pics of a sleek, "sophisticated" and cleanly designed monochromatic tower. It was beautiful. When I found out that it was made from scratch I  set about to make one of my own.

    My gaming table is 3'11" by 2'6"  so when I play Warriors of God or C&C: Ancients, I have just enough room for my game, it's components & not much else including the box lid. After building it,  I was more than thrilled to be able to throw dice on the table, to not worry about a cumbersome box lid or sending games pieces flying all over the board.

    I love it. I've used it for everything from Titan to Star Wars: Queens Gambit to Warriors of God. Best of all it actually looks good with any game I play ( did I mention that I was a visual....nevermind).

    There are some ATers who frown upon them..cough... cough... mattthrower... cough,,, cough, but really, what better homage can we pay to our beloved dice than to build our very own Glorious Chamber of Randomness, in their honour.

    TOWER POWER BABY!!!!.

    Oh yeah, here's my tower in and out of action:

     

  • n another thread our fellow F:ATtie Thaadd mentioned that she's doing a blog in which she is to upload at least 1 photo everyday for 100 days.  I made a comment to Mikoyan about not having my own blog and Thadd busted me by reminding me that The Fort has it's very own blog sections (duh! I forgot I had two entries already.) She then challenged me to take 100 game photos. I thought...."what the hell".

     To be realistic, I doubt I'm gonna do 1 a day but I'll try to do it at least once per week with a short write-up of some sort. I'm not promising anything spectacular but maybe, just maybe I can give you all a little glimpse into my world of gaming.

     

    Going through my game closet recently I came across the Battleship game I got as an X-Mas gift back when I was about 7 or 8 years old. My kids laughed when they saw the ship chart I "skilfully" drew.

    All I can say is, " Suck it UniversalHead!" :P

    customizationI

     

  • A screen shot of F:AT's current in forum game of Battlestar Galactica. Ken B has been an awesome moderator and the guys are a blast to play with.

    In another thread our fellow F:ATtie Thaadd mentioned that she's doing a blog in which she is to upload at least 1 photo everyday for 100 days.  I made a comment to Mikoyan about not having my own blog and Thadd busted me by reminding me that The Fort has it's very own blog sections (duh! I forgot I had two entries already.) She then challenged me to take 100 game photos. I thought...."what the hell".

     To be realistic, I doubt I'm gonna do 1 a day but I'll try to do it at least once per week with a short write-up of some sort. I'm not promising anything spectacular but maybe, just maybe I can give you all a little glimpse into my world of gaming.

     

  •  

    I played Marvel Heroes for the first time on Friday night and had a fucking blast!  This was THE ultimate superhero board gaming experience I've ever had. It felt like I was truly in the world that Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Chris Claremont etc. etc. had built.

    From what I understood before going in, was that the rulebook is  a bit of a nightmare. Fortunately the person who brought MH had prepared himself quite well for the challenge, aided with a flowchart and his keen ability for teaching games (thanks Keith!).

    Keith: Marvel Knights

    Nancy: The Fantastic Four

    Mark: The Avengers

    Me: The Xmen

    Highlights of the game:

    The Wizard after destroying Dr. Strange (w/ support from Daredevil) rushed back to his dingy apartment where he tweeted the rest of his C-list cohorts.

    Pyro having read the Wizard's tweet refused to back down from a fight with Captain America, & The Hulk. After incinerating Cap & dodging Hulk's "Smash" (0 hits on five dice) Pyro scorched then outwitted the Hulk ( 2/3 KOs).  Pyro, feeling cocky, reached for his cellphone to text Hydro-Man about his almost certain victory over the Avengers, when the smouldering Green Goliath loomed above Pyro, raised both gigantic fists in the air and smashed Pyro into pulp. "HULK SMASH!"

    The game ended with the Xmen taking the win for 21 pts, The MKs at 18pts the FF at 14 pts and the Avengers a distant 9 pts.

    I loved it! And to top it off, I never used Wolvie once as Jean Grey kicked sweet ass all over the place. I would play this again at the drop of a hat, it was that good.

    "Nuff said!

     

    In another thread our fellow F:ATtie Thaadd mentioned that she's doing a blog in which she is to upload at least 1 photo everyday for 100 days.  I made a comment to Mikoyan about not having my own blog and Thadd busted me by reminding me that The Fort has it's very own blog sections (duh! I forgot I had two entries already.) She then challenged me to take 100 game photos. I thought...."what the hell".

    To be realistic, I doubt I'm gonna do 1 a day but I'll try to do it at least once per week with a short write-up of some sort. I'm not promising anything spectacular but maybe, just maybe I can give you all a little glimpse into my world of gaming.

  • Shinnen Omedeto! (Happy New Year!)

    I hope all my friends in F:AT land had a safe and great New Year's Day.  I spent the day mostly loafing about at home.  Started working on a PnP called House of Horrors.  About mid-day was when I decided I'd had enough of puttering around and decided to draft out my 101-1001.

    It’s a little project that I spotted on an LJ community several years ago.  Basically, you do 101 things in 1001 days.  Some of them are relatively easy, some of them I know for a fact that I probably won't even get to finish.  Regardless, I wanted to try.

    Here is my list, in no particular order or priority:

    1.    Pay off Wells Fargo
    2.    Establish financial safety net
    3.    Paint house exterior
    4.    Learn Mandarin
    5.    Brush up on my Japanese (get fluent again)
    6.    Visit Hong Kong with family during Chinese New Year
    7.    Paint Warhammer 40k Imperial Guard army completely
    8.    Paint Warhammer 40k Eldar army completely
    9.    Get my weight down to 188 lbs.
    10.    Pass the Army fitness test
    11.    Replay Fallout 2
    12.    Arrange wife to see orthodontist
    13.    Remodel garage into game room
    14.    Get a Pachinko machine
    15.    Repaint interior of house
    16.    Help JoAnn with painting the kitchen
    17.    Plant vegetable garden
    18.    Construct a Neverwinter Nights module
    19.    New furniture for den
    20.    Reupholster Gramma's chair
    21.    Finish “To Be Human” and give it to Trish
    22.    Set up Noah's college fund
    23.    Get life insurance
    24.    Visit Chicago with family
    25.    Visit Seattle with family
    26.    Visit Boston with family
    27.    Ride an Amtrak train
    28.    Write will
    29.    Get Quiz & Dragons
    30.    Replace kitchen sink
    31.    Finish Icewind Dale II
    32.    Replace back door
    33.    Finish Devil May Cry
    34.    Finish Paraworld
    35.    Repaint raised portion of garage floor
    36.    Fix cracked pavement
    37.    Replace front door knob
    38.    Surprise JoAnn
    39.    Check credit report
    40.    Teach Noah to ride his bike without training wheels
    41.    Clear out bedroom closet
    42.    Clear out office closet
    43.    Frame Feng Shui poster
    44.    Frame Pipa
    45.    Replace wire screen on microwave cart
    46.    Clear out library
    47.    Get Soulstorm
    48.    Get new PC
    49.    Get laptop for JoAnn
    50.    Take down birdhouse and put up new one
    51.    Get new suit
    52.    Renew passport
    53.    Get Noah a passport
    54.    Landscape front yard
    55.    Stain fence
    56.    Bike ride on the St. Tammany trace with family
    57.    Watch the entire Slayers  series
    58.    Complete Cowboy Bebop collection
    59.    Complete DMC:TAS collection
    60.    Teach Noah to swim
    61.    Arrange to have German Wehrmacht Army officer's sabre to be put on loan with D-Day museum
    62.    Learn to draw 63.    Finish GOMCO game review
    64.    Finish Farseerreview
    65.    Finish PnP of Dead of Night
    66.    Finish PnP arena for The Hunt
    67.    Get rid of CDs I don't listen to anymore
    68.    Dance with JoAnn to our song
    69.    Take JoAnn on romantic trip
    70.    Finish Crone World session report
    71.    Finish Murder City session report
    72.    Help Noah graduate from being a Bear Scout
    73.    Clear out attic
    74.    Replace missing pieces to my games (D&D board game, American Dream, etc.)
    75.    Finish writing WDC Rules Omnibus
    76.    Feng Shui-ify Monster Hunter International universe to have my friends play
    77.    Convince my players to try Justifiers(again).
    78.    Convince my players to play Living Steel
    79.    Clear out the clutter in the house
    80.    Get a new weed eater
    81.    Rearrange the garage
    82.    See The Avengers with my son
    83.    See The Hobbit with the family
    84.    Finish Bauhaus Bunker paper mini terrain
    85.    Finish Imperial Bridge Head paper mini terrain
    86.    Finish Brotherhood cathedral paper mini terrain
    87.    Finish Brotherhood expansion
    88.    Get minis for Brotherhood expansion
    89.    Get a Dark Cults set for Brandy
    90.    Get the NWN Omnibus collection
    91.    Build a Cubmobile
    92.    Teach Noah the 1-12 multiplication tables
    93.    Paint Nin-Gonostminiatures
    94.    Write a game review for Tai-Pan
    95.    Write a game review for Whirlwind
    96.    Finish writing Pigeon
    97.    Finish writing Offworld
    98.    Finish creating the Demnogonis Sourcebook
    99.    Create Semai Sourcebook
    100.    Finish Genesis Rising
    101.    S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat



    And the finish date is 9-28-14.  Starting this weekend... Wish me luck.

  • Quite the storm expected here in the Mid-Atlantic Region, and I intend to stay up late this evening both to keep the driveway clear and to revel in the sheer volume of white due to land on us.  I'll drop in with the occasional measurement as the next 36 hours play out.

    S.

     

  •  

    So I walk into the Strategy Gaming session that my buddy Tim runs with the local middle and high schoolers.  Usually I'm in the mix for the entire day but I've been catching up on about a hundred jobs around the house and yard and needed to let my son make the trip on his own this time.  But I finished up at home around 3 and headed
    over early, only to find twelve kids all in on one big-ass game of Age of Empires!  He had put four tables together in a big rectangle and had two copies of the game fully used in one single game.  I just walked in and smiled and shook my head.

  •  

    In 1979 I was fifteen years old and fifteen miles away when Three Mile Island had a "malfunction."  At first the news was interesting and we watched carefully as the day progressed.  Then the news got big, it went national, and everything changed in town.  Dial tone took ten seconds to appear on the phone.  Schools let out early.  Local channels went on 24-hour news coverage at a time when that was unheard of and the new Governor Dick Thornburg was on the air for days at a time with some guy named "Dr. Denton," a rare bird that could actually describe how a nuclear reactor worked to us normal people.  In 1987 Doctor Harold Denton would be the key-note speaker at my graduation from Penn State.  In the following six days most people in the Harrisburg area knew how a three-stage cooling PWR reactor worked, and what had gone wrong in Unit 2.  The education was detailed and immersive.  It was the only subject worth considering.

    President Jimmy Carter, first in his class at the Naval Academy with a degree in Nuclear Engineering came on scene because surely he thought (God bless him) the best thing a President could do with his time in a crisis was get in the way of the people trying to handle the problem and offer his technical advice.

    One of the things we were educated on was the escalation stages that would occur in the event things would spiral out of control.  We were blessed to see the mark stay next to the lowest stage -- shut down as much as possible and cool cool cool.  Though Unit 2 was never able to fully seat the zirconium control rods that interfere with fission they were closed enough to suppress the reaction.  Unit 2 slowly shut down and once the Pressure Ordinance Release Valve issue was understood the engineers were in a position to slowly regain control and shut down the reaction completely.  Unit 2 never reopened and cleanup is still not fully complete.  But no one died from TMI.  The contingency plans functioned as designed.  Catastrophe was halted a long way down on the escalation list.

    This weekend I was sitting in CiCi's Pizza visiting with my extended family in Virginia.  My Ma and both my sisters were there, as was one of my brothers-in-law who had lived across the river in Mechanicsburg at the time of TMI.  The TV announced that they were dumping seawater into Fukushima and all of us exhaled in exasperation.  That had been on the list of escalation stages, well up the chart and all of us understood what the others in the restaurant did not -- it was an indication that the engineers had lost.  Fukushima was a runaway.  It would do what it wanted; containment was being surrendered in a desperate attempt to gain control through brute force.

    This evening I watched on the evening news as they listed the different issues present, 4 reactors out of control and their associated cool-off tanks that are boiling away their water.  This is truly a catastrophic turn of events.  Once broken away from its control structures the uranium will do as it pleases.  Little Boy contained 140 pounds of fuel.  You can fit that in a gym bag.  These reactors and their cooling tanks would fill a fast food restaurant corner to corner in all three dimensions.

    Japan truly has had a very bad day today, likely the worst in its incredibly long, storied history.  If any culture on this Earth can overcome this kind of adversity surely this is it, and when all is said and done Japan will certainly survive.  But it will be changed.  I believe all of us will be changed as well.

    S.

     

  • I love this game. 

    It is practically the essence of pure unadulterated beat em up, wrapped in a odd wargamey look, but with funky dice, the best new combat system in years, and some nifty event cards. 

    Bits:

    A very wide hard map of northern US and Canada. Cards on linen stock, a few tokens, and about 15 custom dice in 5 colors. And your troops are cubes. It is a pure dyed-in-the-wool AT DOAM game with cubes. 

    In practice, I'm not minding the cubes. There is only one troop type per faction, and they end up being much easier to deal with the having to stand up the plastic figures. You just drag them along in little groups and never are stuck between trying to stand them up again or leaving piles of plastic bits in a space. We've seen some large roving armies of 15 troops, and the board is practically covered in them at the start. 

    Basic rules:

    The game has perhaps 4 pages of rules, and really begs for exactly 5 players. They are divided into two teams (American Regulars, the crappy American Militia, the crappy Canadian Militia, Brits, and Indians.)

    The object resembles the very abstract Battleline. Take more of their key points than they've taken of yours. This takes between 3 and 8 round, and ends when one team has played all of their "Truce" Cards. 

    During a round, turns are done in random order (I've always adored this mechanic, not enough games use it.) by drawing from a bag. A player plays one movement card and optional special nifty cards. The movement cards specify a number of armies to move a number of spaces. 

    An army is as many of your guys and allies in a space you want to move. 

    Combat: Sweet, Sweet Combat

    Each player has 2-3 custom dice, which are different for each faction. Roll one die per unit to a maximum of 2 or 3. There are three results:

    1. Kill one enemy

    2. Optional retreat one unit to let it fight another day

    3. RUN AWAY!!! Your own unit is demoralized and leaves the map to reform at the muster point along with reinforcements on your next turn

    There is so much good here in such a simple system. The limit on number of dice thrown mean that you want mixed groups. And the tendency of the Militia troops to run away means you want to take hits with them, but still want to keep some around in case they can do something useful. And the optional retreat means that you may want to start leaving a longer battle if you think you might lose, because you cannot just move everything back. 

    In practice, you could almost start the game from what you've just read. There are some details, and a bit of chrome here and there, but only a handful of extra rules. 

    Actually playing:

    1812 reminds me a lot of the style of Memoir '44 Overlord scenarios. The team dynamic is definitely present, and the fact that the game encourages mixed groups in combat reinforces this quite nicely. 

    And while the game can totally be played at the pitchers of beer and pretzels level, there are some actual wargamey choices. It helps to play to your special cards, as each faction has their own tiny deck with unique specials and movement card mixes. 

    Downsides:

    First of all, it jumps up and down and screams for 5. With fewer players, all factions still go, so someone has to take multiple factions. It isn't a complex stretch to see two people playing, but they miss out of the social and team aspect. 3-4 seem a little silly 

    I also wonder about balance. It seems like everything is stacked against the Americans. They only get 2 turns to the Canadians 3 each round. They get reinforcements further from the main line of battle, and they start with more troops away from the border. The Canadians start with a definite advantage, but seems to drop over time as the Americans bring more troops to bear. 

    The really wide battleline and the card variability is going to keep games from being too predictable. Perhaps I'm just not sure how to approach the American position yet. Or the crappy American Militia always keep running away. Really, the white guys are absolutely awful in an almost hysterical fashion.  

    Summary:

    It is just such a fun game that probably appeals less to Grognards than to people who like to roll dice. The die system is great, and the game plays in 30-120 minutes. So far, my 3 plays have felt relatively different. 

    I'm not sure I'd want to play a whole series of these, as there is a slightly abstract nature here that would require some hefty reworking to make it feel different. Still, I'd really want to at least look at anything else they do with it, and I'm now wondering why the heck I haven't played Conflict of Heroes. It's awesome, isn't it?

     

  • So I went over to The Grid, which is where my game group meets, to try and buy 1D3. I like to buy stuff at The Grid, since they let us play there, and are super nice, but they mostly sell CCG and D&D stuff there, so pretty much I just buy dice and card sleeves, and junk like that there. They keep all their stuff behind a counter, which is kind of a pain, but makes sense, so I had to wait for someone to help me.

    Jamie, who doesn't even work there, but is there so much he is like staff, asks me what I need. I tell him I need a D3. More than one if he has it. He looks at me like I'm a little soft in the head. So I tell him I just want a 6 sided die with 1-1-2-2-3-3. I know they are made. So he says I should just use a D6 and divide by two. No DUH! 

    Nothing against Jamie, BTW. He is an awesome guy. He also has a really cute baby, that he brings in sometimes. She just sleeps in her little car seat through all the gaming noise.  The fact that is a cool for gamer parents to bring in their babies is a testament to how socially well adjusted most of the regulars are. Not to mention how clean and and well kept the place is. Although I am tempted to take a rag and Lysol to the bathroom. The bathroom itself is clean, but the light switch and door  edges are almost black from finger prints. It's kind of gross, but it is also the kind of thing that guys don't seem to notice.

    So anyway, no luck on the D3. And yes, Jamie is right, I can use a D6 and divide by 2. It's what I have been doing. The thing is that I have too many games, where you have to do this. On a 1 or 2, X happens, on a 3 or a 4 Y happens, etc. It's just that I never play any game often enough to remember these little details. So we'll start playing, and then someone will ask, "How does reinforcements work again?" or whatever. Then we have to stop and look it up.  I'm thinking that if I throw a D3 into the box, when I see it, I'll think, "What's this for?" And then I'll remember, "Oh, yeah, that's the reinforcements die."  Also, no math and fewer brain farts. Like when your supposed to get 2 dollars if you roll a 3 or a 4, but when you see the 3, you just think 3. Honestly, a D3 only costs like 30 cents. I wish game publishers would just throw one in and raise the game price by a buck. It could even be a different color than the other dice, so it looks special. But I'm an anti-demographic who notices finger prints on doors, and doesn't mind paying a bit more for convenience. Raising a game price by a buck would no doubt provoke riots and boycotts.

    So I'm still hunting for my elusive D3.

  • The winners of the 2008 IGA has been announced by the International Gamers Awards committee a.k.a. a bunch of really white dudes . Seriously, it looks like the reunion of the St. John's Prep chess club.

    And Frank, what is this? Your head shot from the program for your high school production of "Godspell"?

     

    BTW, they like Agricola and 1960: The Making of the President. Congrats to Zev and Z-man Games. I hope this means that Z-man makes piles of money to bank roll more games like Shadow Hunters and Tales of the Arabian Nights.