Tuesday, October 29, 2013


I do not know of a crisis being fun but the yearly Crisis convention event from organizer Tin Soldiers of Antwerp sure is a lot of fun. Aimed mainly at miniature wargamers, Crisis in my humble opinion is the best convention on the European continent.

At Crisis there are a lot of traders selling their goodies and showing much of the new stuff on the market. It will be a gathering of very many miniature wargamers (most traders are themselves too). A lot of them are demonstrating games but most of them are buying all kinds of wannahaves, participate in one or more of the many demogames or just are busy chatting with other enthousiastics and sellers.

I am very much looking forward to this fantastic miniature wargames event! Will meet a lot of hobby friends there and sure will be extending my collection with new acquisitions that day! Furthermore I will take some pictures of the hobby related eye candy and place them in an upcoming blog article.

CRISIS 2013 will be held on Saturday November 2nd at the Hangar 29 Waagnatie, Rijnkaai 150 in Antwerp Belgium. Doors will be open from 10 AM to 5 PM. Entry fee is 10 Euro's and Parking is Free!  

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Fantastic Fantasy (Part 2)

Last time I told a bit about the Warhammer Fantasy game I played and about one I observed for a while. In this part I will start by reporting on my second engagement of the day. This second battle was versus those heraldic Bretonnians bringing back good old Knighthood and Chivalry into Warhammer Fantasy battles.

Dice rolls decided the kind of scenario and the different scenery items we used as well as who would start our game. This honour fell upon the Bretonnians but their vows committed them to start praying first. My Orcs now took initiative, yelling " let 'um pray fur bash by choppa" and after a few minor but noisy internal squabbles they eagerly advanced straight on towards the nearest enemy troops.
Now in my humble opinion the real strength of the Bretonnian army lies in their units of mounted Knights. These guys are almost unstoppable and with their multiple save abillities prove very tuff nuts to crack. We had a lot of combat going on and the fight went from one side having the advantage swinging over to the other side being on top. Gigantic rocks fired by stone throwers crushed many a units' rank and file. On one flank of the battlefield combat consisted of firing hails of arrows on each other, sometimes to no avail but with deadly effect in other turns.
On our battlefield lay an enchanted river and when a unit crossed it risked being cooked to the bone by boiling water. In fact this terrain piece split our field of glory in two seperate fighting areas. The struggle between my greenskins and their knightly opponents was a very close call. In the end however it were the Bretonnians that came out victorious! My Orc Big Boss wandered off in shame due to yet another battle lost.
This was my final action with the greenskin Waaagh I brought along for the Fantasy battleday. It also meant that I had time left to visit a few battles held by some of the other players present. I observed two different engagements of the Wood Elve army that I had previously encountered. These Elves first took on a Chaos Warrior force followed by combat against yet another greenskin Waaagh, this time consisting mainly out of Savage Orcs. The cunning wood fellows were utterly beaten by the might of the Chaos Warriors but the outcome of the clash versus those powerful Savage Orcs was in their favour again.

I really had a most wonderful time playing miniature wargames. For me it was several months ago that I practiced a few Warhammer Fantasy battles, and those were based on the 7th edition rules. The ones of last Sunday followed the 8th edition rulesset. I lost both of my engagements but the one feeling that prevails is that I had a great hobby experience with other Fantastic Fantasy enthusiastics.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Fantastic Fantasy (Part 1)

Last Sunday I had the pleasure of playing a couple of Warhammer Fantasy battles. There were several players so some battle scenario's with different armies went on simultaniously. I had an all Orc army, that is with just enough gobbo's to man two big shoota's (a rock lobber and a spear chukka).

My first engagement was with or better against a Wood Elve force. Though small in numbers this forest loving warriors proved more than a match for my greenskins. Because I did not play the 8th edition for quite a while I found myself catching breath for adequate rule knowledge. Luckely for me there was enough support from my fellow players so after some time I managed to catch-up and overcame this problem.

The real problem during my first game was me being unable to cope with those fine characteristics of the Wood Elve army. First there was the swiftness of their cavalry units that made my greenskins look like clumsy mobs ... uh ... like real Orcs, that is!? The biggest problem for me was the might of both Treemen, with one of them being the extra strong enemy general. These creatures bashed and stomped my precious orc units to pieces. They even directed complete forests against my already battered units. And so my first battle of the day became a real massacre! Worst of all was that I lend out a box of dice to my opponent and these dice worked almost magical for him.

After this firm beating I had some time for a breather and took the opportunity to visit a nearby table where a campaign battle was on between brave Empire troops on one side and fearsome Cult of Slaanesh warriors on the other.

The Slaanesh player suprised one Empire flank and overran it. The Empire troops had a though time holding off the numerous enemy attacks. One of those lead to the taking of a battletower by Witch Elves. Girls on Top was their motto!

Than I had to prepare for yet another engagement. This time heraldic Bretonnians were on the menu. I will continue my report in part 2 of this Fantastic Fantasy article.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Let's play Black Powder Napoleonics

This week my youngest son and I played a Black Powder game. It was a Napoleonic scenario, set in Russia 1812. We named it the The Battle of Staminovska.

We did not have all that much experience with the game system, but were confident that the rules wouldn't cause too much problems. In order to play our game we used the basic Black Powder rules, the advanced rules that you can find in both Albion Triumphant supplements and even a few house rules. Because of the smaller size of our table we adjusted all ranges to 50% except the Command range (remained at 12"). Our goals were primary to have a nice game and secundary to learn and test the Black Powder system.
Fortunately we could also use roster sheets from Army Builders' latest BP additions.

The battle started with the French advancing on both Staminovska and the nearby birch wood. The Russians prepared for defense, with the bulk of their troops also focusing on the birch wood and a small part in the village. The French army possessed more infantry and cavalry but the Russians had more (and better) guns, including two light Licornes. In 1812 the Russian artillery incorporated special smoothbore Field Howitzers called Licornes (or Unicorns). Licornes had a longer barrel and a much flatter trajectory than common smoothbore Field Howitzers. Therefore they had a somewhat longer range and were more accurate.We applied a special house rule for the use of those fine artillery pieces.

It was in the second turn that both parties really clashed. Fierce fighting took place in and around the birch wood and some French light infantry troops managed to occupy the village border. Both army commanders send their heavy cavalry in the space between Staminovska village and the birch wood. A clash between two line dragoon regiments followed.

In the end the Russian cavalrymen won the engagement, but with heavy losses (2 down on stamina and the unit being disordered / red dice showing amount of casualties and black dice indicating disorder). The French were far from beaten and so the fight went on.

We split our game in two parts. The first was done during the afternoon and the second late in the evening (all pictures are taken during the first part). Not much changed in the second part and we both decided to call it a draw (we did not want Russian winter to surprise us).

It was around midnight when we ended our Napoleonic Black Powder battle. Afterwards we held a short evaluation of the game. We did not apply all rules as they were intended. One cannot expect too much of a first tester. However the overall feeling was very good indeed and it tasted for more, much more (we drank a tasty Belgian beer as well). Black Powder now surely is on our play list!


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Pirates on Land, Pirates in Town

On proposal of a good friend and brother-in-law, we had a couple of games based on those magnificant Legends of the High Seas rules published by Warhammer Historical.

Being pirate and priveteer crews the quest for loot and liquer normally takes place on sea. But our scenario brought them on land, in a small town, near a ruined missionary house and even in the jungle.

The crews soon became quite dispersed and being seperated from each other they fought small mostly individual battles with a lust for loot in their excited eyes. Many brave crewman perished and only the strongest made it through. Finally these survivors had a showdown in the dense jungle, near the old temple.

Captain Badeye Burt the Buccaneer then entered this temple and went for that one golden-yellow price only to find out that it was the monkey that went bananas!

In the end all seemed lost and even in the dark some lonely crew members wandered through that treacherous jungle in search for both captain and fruitcake monkey.

We players had a very good time with this Legends of the High Seas scenario. For us it became certain that there will be much more pirate games in the near future. So hoist the colours!