Monday, 18 March 2019

First Epic Star Wars X-Wing Game

Imperial Raider in all its glory.
We were away for the weekend, visiting Brighton to see friends and the Godchildren. The trip down was windy, but we managed to get there without being blown off the road. On Sunday we got to play a game of X-Wing.

Second turn: everyone has moved into range And Dylan's chose his mum's Falcon as his target.

This was the first time  the huge ship rules any of us have played with a large ship. Fortunately, Dylan is a sharp cookie and did all the hard work of explaining how his Imperial Raider flew and fired.

We played one of the scenarios from the Imperial Raider mission book where the Imperial force had to destroy some debris that the Rebel Alliance were trying to salvage.

Chloe's TIE Interceptor is about to be hammered by the two T65 X-wings flown by her dad.

We divided into two teams. Our two Godchildren commanding the Imperial forces. Dylan took the Imperial Raider; and Chloe flew Darth Vader in an Imperial Advanced TIE fighter, and took a TIE Interceptor as her second ship. A total of 159 points.

Myself, Susan, Alix and Ian were playing the rebels. I flew Poe Dameron in a T70 X-wing; Susan chose a B-wing piloted by Ten Numb; Ian took two T65 X-wings, one Red squadron pilot, the other Wedge Antilles who rocks; and Alix flew Han in the Falcon. No upgrades for a total of 160 points.

There was a lot of dodging as the Imperial Raider swung towards the X-wings.

Turn one and the Imperial Raider moved forward, and we rebels advance cautiously as we had didn't want to feel the full might of the huge ship when it fired on us.

Dylan swiped the two X-wings off the board, and now all the rebel players were trying not to be in its path.

The game got very deadly real quick when the full implication of being rammed meant instant obliteration of the small rebel fighters. Things were starting to look pretty grim for the four adults, with Alix's Falcon losing all of its shields and taking hull damage.

It's big and manoeuvres like a barge.

At one point, Dylan looked like he would accidentally fly the Imperial Raider off the table, but he adroitly managed to swing around after batting the two X-wings. However, it did mean that the surviving rebels were able to get into his rear arc.

The swarming begins, the little ships like remora around a shark.

The big ship swung around to then start targeting the debris, but the accumulative damage had started to tell.

The Falcon is flying with half its hull points gone, but so is the Imperial Raider.

Then in a last round of manoeuvring saw the Imperial Raider go down as it turned towards its next goal. This was a very close game as all the rebel ships were hanging in by a thread and if any had been unlucky when rolling the evade dice then the Imperial forces would've have won.

The fall of the Imperial Raider as the remaining rebels avoiding Darth Vader and deliver the coup de grace.

Showing the  cards that are reversed when each half of the big ship is rendered ineffective and when both halves are gone, only then is the ship destroyed.

Tuesday, 5 March 2019

Longbow Making Course

Pip Bickerstaffe master bowyer.

We went away at the weekend to sunny Birkenhead, well the sun came out in the daytime, but mostly it was wet and windy. Not that this mattered much as we were indoors learning how to make a longbow.

Demonstration of how to shape the stave.

One might consider this course to be one-to-one scale wargaming, if making historical weapons of war to shoot arrows with is your thing.

There were three other people on the bow making course course with me and Susan. It wasn't all work, we had lunch too.

Ben Lamb, Susan, and Karen.

To be clear, when I say make, I mean Pip Bickerstaffe prepared staves for us to shape. He was helped by Ben Lamb who will be taking over the business when Pip retires. They both worked hard to help us make the best bow we could.

Pip demonstrating how to apply the leather grip; Rob, Karen, and Susan watch closely.

On the Sunday, after we'd finished making our bows, there was some coaching on how to draw them and loose arrows at targets. Pip is very much of the school that shooting a longbow is learning a martial art.

We both came away with lovely longbows, which due to the preparation by Pip and Ben look as good as anything one might buy. Now all we have to do is go shooting.

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Birthday Acquisitions


The X-Wing meme of – Mistakes Were Made – seems almost applicable here, except that this was no unforeseen splurge, but rather a birthday acquisition. The U-wing is a very pretty craft from Rogue One that I think has all the attributes that made the X-wing so iconic.

Ghost of course, is from the cartoon series Rebels, which like The Clone Wars has added more to story than some of the prequel and sequel films in the Star Wars franchise.

Either way, I like the ships and I'm looking forward to playing a game of X-Wing at some point with these two models, and trying out some of the special rules that go with them.

Sunday, 17 February 2019

Heavy Gear Blitz Rules


I've only managed to play Heavy Gear a couple of times. The main obstacle is that when it comes to mecha games, BattleTech is the 800lbs gorilla in the room.

Therefore I have to pitch Heavy Gear to BattleTech players as an alternative to playing classic or Alpha Strike. And, any Heavy Gear game I run has to also compete with other games like Star Wars X-Wing, which feel more modern from their play sequences.

Anyway, the discussion is over on the Dream Pod 9 forum. If you play Heavy Gear or have an interest in mecha games, then check it out.

Monday, 11 February 2019

Newten Town WIP: Weathering

Anyway, after a lot of faffing I got around to working on Newten. All that's left to do now is put down some grass flock and it will be finished. Yeah, I know "all" is a very diminutive word to describe an indefinite amount of effort required. Like the word soon.

So when I say finished, what I mean is mostly finished, as I'll probably want to do some graffiti and add some clutter, like debris, but mostly finished. I'll keep telling myself that, it's good for the morale of the troops. Ha!

And here's a birds eye view. See what I mean about needing some more clutter?


Tuesday, 5 February 2019

Four Dogs WIP

And here's an update on my progress with getting my Dog combat armour suit squad moved along. Still a little ways to go before I can call these done.

This may not look like much progress, but I changed some details on the models: removing the machine gun on the arm and replacing it with  a better part, and also shortening the barrel of the autocannon on two of the models, which required touching up the paintwork.

On the left is Sergeant Tachikoma's Dog, set up as running light, ready to lead her squad on the into the interior of the White Mountain for the Search And Rescue mission.

The three models on the right represent part of a squad from the support platoon that also featured in my novel Bad Dog, seen here "loaded for bear."
In 2071, Sergeant Tachikoma leads a Marine combat armor squad. She knows the Corps never promised her a rose garden, only the chance to fight for her country. Now, she faces her greatest challenge, two terrifying alien pillars that trapped her into reliving the same day again. The day she dies. Today, she needs every ounce of courage to save her people from annihilation.