Sunday, 26 November 2017

Norm is spending my money again.....

or is he?

I have been thinking about Xmas and what exciting things I might like to buy for myself (sorry Santa!). Norm has just reviewed the latest version of the LnL Tactical Starter Kit. Like his review of Tank on Tank from LnL, which finally switched me on to the very interesting aspects of that tactical system, I have finally been convinced that LnL Tactical is something I should try out. 

I played Squad Leader in the dim and distant but avoided ASL and also Combat Commander and most of the other tactical games. I have always had my eye on LnL because I'm interested in their Mogadishu game and their Libya expansion. Norm's review has convinced me to take a closer look.

The starter kit has been free in the US (only paying postage). It has been in some of the one-line shops for less than a tenner but a little trawl today produced none in stock anywhere. I have checked Wargames Vault for a PnP version and, to my surprise, realised I had already downloaded the two starter sets that now comprise the latest printed version. These are on Wargames Vault for £0, a real bargain for a couple of decent little games. I just need some time to set them up and play them!

A few other things have popped up recently (ooer Matron!) which may be of interest:

  • Dadi and Piombo the Italian publishers of Impulse and Basic Impulse have just released a small game version called Basic Battles. This is an adaptation of Basic Impetus for periods from the ECW to Colonial Wars. It is on Wargames Vault for £0. Grab a copy now!!!! Who needs Black Friday!
  • High Flying Dice Games have got something interesting in development, a small game on the Fulda Gap called Land of Confusion. Nuff said (thoughts of Wurzburg and the Fulda Gap game).
  • Real Time Wargames, the rather unusual (quirky?) rules producers, now have a game on the Italian Renaissance. It uses squares and includes a campaign. It is £25 but looks very, very interesting. 
  • The magazine Counter Fact has released a solo game on the current real world ISIS problem in Libya. I have read some reviews of this and it looks like a good solo system. Wargames Vault for $14.95.
  • Last but not least, Lou Coatney had released another free PnP game on NW Europe this time it is Market Garden (Eagle Attack). One for a rainy afternoon perhaps, very printer friendly!
Lots to be getting on with then! Next jobs are finishing Ground Zero and starting a new project on Kursk to be called Steel, Steel, Steel! This will be small, area based and probably solo with the player taking charge of the 4th Panzer Armee. Such fun.

Friday, 17 November 2017

Unboxing: Operation Icarus from Tiny Battle Publishing

A quick update after a long week at work. First up I have come across this unboxing video for Icarus. It is a very attractive game and I'm really pleased with how it has turned out. It is available through Wargames Vault as a PnP.

Second up, is that I have tracked down Dave Kershaw's designer diary on BGG for Albuera which is under development for White Dog games. Well worth a look.

I have had another idea for a game but that is for a longer post in the near future!

Sunday, 22 October 2017

A bit of an update.....

and another interesting list?

Well, I have more work than I can shake a stick at just now so progress on projects has been very limited. I have, however, been keeping my hand in and maintaining a keen interest in new stuff.

Albuera: I have been lucky enough to have the chance to do a bit of play testing on Dave Kershaw's new game (which will be out shortly through White Dog). A great area game with some really unique features and fantastic artwork. This will be available as a PnP so you can get it pretty easily. Highly recommended. His designer diary is hidden on BGG so I'll include a link when I can find it.

Donetsk: I have recently obtained a copy of Yaah! Magazine issue 9 with a really interesting modern tactical game. Well worth having a look at and a really challenging battle.

Rifles in the Ardennes (RITA): Tiny Battles have come up with a surprise game by Gottardo Zancani the guy that did Space Infantry. This game, otherwise known as RITA, is a solitaire infantry game with tanks etc. It looks really intriguing and is on my list for Xmas. It is on Wargames Vault for a very reasonable $12.   

Modern warfare: My current interest in modern warfare continues unabated. I recently bought an interesting book, The Defence of Jisr al-Doreaa, in the style of Duffers Drift concerned with US counter-insurgency tactics in Iraq. It is not quite written with the aplomb of Duffers but is nevertheless very enlightening. The book includes Duffers Drift and is well worth while getting for that. However, I have now found the text on the interweb and you can read it here. This link also includes additional training material including videos.  

Also, the US has just revisited it's guidance on war fighting in the light of changes in the modern world. The latest versions of FM-03 and ADP-03 Operations are on the internet. 

HE effectiveness against tanks: Norm has written an interesting blog post about how rules reflect the effectiveness of artillery against tanks. I think this discussion shows how good Norm's Tigers at Minsk are in representing WW2 tactical battles. Nice!

Small games on hex grids: A couple of other blog posts have caught my eye. First, Man of Tin has been using Don Featherstone's Close Little Wars rules on a hex grid. Very atmospheric. Also, on the Projects and Procrastination there is another adaptation of Close Wars for colonial skirmish on a grid. The games look very much like the pictures of Joseph Morschausers gridded games.    

It's never too early for an Xmas book list! Following some discussions with Duc de Gobin, I have become interested in the possibility of using GZ for Vietnam. So, my book list begins with Flashing Saber: Three Years in Vietnam by Matthew Brennan a veteran of the 1st Air Cav which I hope will have plenty of scenario material. I have also been reading some blog posts by Daniel A. Sjursen on The Nation and others. An erudite individual with extensive experience in Iraq. His book, Ghost Riders of Baghdad: Soldiers, Civilians, and the Myth of the Surge, is also on my list. Funnily enough, the Ghost Riders were another cavalry reconnaissance outfit. 

Well, that's it for now, back to work!

Sunday, 10 September 2017

GZ: Update

I have uploaded the next working version of GZ. This includes rules for sniper units. As you might guess from the picture above, the next section is breaching.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

GZ: Snipers...

filling in the gaps!

I'm starting to make progress with filling in some of the gaps in the current version of the rules. Next up is the sniper section. I'll update the rules page shortly.

As an aside, I'm pleased that the game I have been working on as developer for Tiny Battles (Operation Icarus) has now been released. A really nice game that produces great narrative. Well worth a look! As my first developer gig this was pretty tough and a real learning curve. No wonder my 6 x 6 challenge is behind schedule!

Sunday, 3 September 2017

GZ Vietnam.......

search and destroy!

Just to draw your attention to Duc de Gobin's brilliant use of the draft GZ rules for a Vietnam scenario. I'm always really happy when people try the rules I produce especially when it looks fantastic as well!

Saturday, 2 September 2017

GZ: Coalition forces....

half way there!

One of the nice things about GZ is that you need very few forces to have a good game. I'm looking at around 8 units per side plus a leader. Each unit is one fire team, one specialist team (HMG, ATGW, JTAC etc) or one vehicle. Above is one leader, one HMG team (ok its cheating, there are two M60 gunners which will do in my book), and one vehicle.

Here are two fire teams (working from the bottom up), HMG team, Leader, vehicle, and, lastly, an ATGW team. 

The troops are Esci US troops (a bit Cold War but they will do for me), the HMMWV is Matchbox and the rest is paper and Fab Foam.

For Coalition forces you probably just need one box of modern US infantry (Caesar make several) and for the OPFOR, one box of militia (again Caesar make two types).  

I have nearly finished painting up my US infantry and have undercoated the bad guys. I have also stocked up on Matchbox style HMMWVs including UN and Police vehicles. In the wings I have 3 M113s (Airfix) and a Revell Abrams (which was on sale for £2.99). I'm also working on an Mi-24 (1/144) to be my generic close air support.

I'm using 3D card buildings from Junior General as well as their trees and elephant grass!

Next step will be to play test through a series of training scenarios which I will post about here. I'm really pleased, this is quite exciting!