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Historicon 2017 – Saturday

Posted on July 16th, 2017 under . Posted by

Sometimes you join a participation wargame and its not quite what you’d hope for. Tons of downtime, unclear goals and rules, fiddly minutia that leaves you feeling every minute of a four hour run time.

But then there are other games that are just magic. Check out photos and a report from my Historicon experience after the jump, in which I lucked into not one but two of those killer games that leave me counting the days to the next convention.


The Vendor Hall

I started the day by hitting the vendor hall. I had a shopping list of bits and pieces I needed to pick up, and my gaming buddy Chris (a Blood and Plunder fanatic) had a number of items he requested I bring back to him. Unable to attend the HGMS cons due to work obligations, he asked me to take some photos of the vendor hall as well to get a better sense of what it was like. Since I shared with him, I figure it would be rude not to share with you as well.

The vendor hall had the usual array of sellers in attendance peddling figures, terrain, games, and peripheral wares associated with wargaming. I chatted with a rep from Shapeways and got some ideas for future projects, spent too much money on things not on my shopping list, and ran into a line of figures I was surprised to see.

They’re Back

The Martians have returned! I picked up some starter boxes during the initial launch a few years ago, but after Architects of War folded I resigned myself to eBaying the few figures I had. Luckily I’m pretty lazy and never got around to it, giving All Quiet on the Martian Front a chance to be acquired by another company and go back into production. I might finally need to get my tripods painted and on the table.

Firelock Games

I had to stop by the Firelock Games booth to check out the new wooden corvette, and to try out their demo table.

Chris Tunez gave my son a run down of the rules in which I learned we’d been playing a number of rules just slightly wrong. Oops! Glad I was able to clear up some misconceptions though!

Other Bits

Wargaming specific lighting effects? I thought I’d have to raid the model railroad shop, but maybe this will work for some projects I have in mind.

“Why is that castle wearing a sombrero?” – my wife.

Old Glory buildings perfect for some Spanish colonies

Games!

Despite only being at the con for about a day, I felt like I was able to play a lot. I got to try a number of demos in the vendor hall (great for getting a taste of different rules systems), scoped out a number of great looking set ups in the main hall, and joined a Shatterlands game (a pretty unique individual skirmish game with randomized character profile cards that include lottery-style scratch of damage trackers!)

Shatterlands character card with scratch off damage trackers
Steampunk/Renaissance game. Lots of airships! 

I got a closer look at the awesome pirate board set up. Fantastic! So many little details, clear “zones” (village, fort, mysterious river, etc.) that made it feel like a real place.

The fort with baggage train

A road snaked its way from the fort to this village.

The village with workers unloading goods.

Beyond the village was a church and other buildings farther into the jungles.
Beyond the church were the wilds with this mysterious river.

Defensive position and rope bridges
I had to strain to get a pic of the dice boxes. They were nestled into the terrain and hard to pick out from the terrain on first glance.

Vine encrusted temples and states with intimidating skulls posted nearby.
Also check out the large plant that dominates the center of the photo. Its just a houseplant sitting on the floor abutting the corner of the table, but added a visual backdrop that enhanced the ambience and provided a sight block to the snack area beyond.

Commando raid with dock security trying to stop them. The yellow circles are pools of light beneath street lamps for this night time battle. I thought that was a neat touch.

Awful Green Things From Outerspace board. In the dark room the lighting worked into the terrain was impressive (but my camera has lightened the whole photo). Talked to some players who ran through it during two different sessions so it sounds like it was fun!

Huge WWII game on table with teddy bear cloth fields covering every inch. So cool.

Allies advancing lengthwise down the 16 foot board along the train tracks.

Axis defending this town that commanded the heights at the end of the board.
All Quiet on the Martian Front battles in the main hall.

I checked in several times Saturday, and either this was a monster game that lasted all day, or there were AQoTMF games being played back to back.

Good to see the alien greeblies back on the table.

SOCOM and Sorcery

I signed up for a spot in Miles Reidy’s WW2 vs Egyptian Fantasy in a pulp three way battle that did not disappoint.

My son and I ran a Fallschirmjäger team with armored car support. Axis and Allies set up on opposite ends of a 16 foot board, our objective to capture Professor Akbar (who took shelter in the catacombs beneath a pyramid in the center of the table)

Our paratrooper ready to move out

The locals weren’t happy to see us.

We initially skirmished with Arab cavalry and sharpshooters lurking in the hills. As we drew closer to the pyramid though, it’s sorcerous influence summoned nefarious supernatural guardians in the best pulp manner.

Our tank was forced to deal with a monstrous troll like guardian.

Our other Axis teams cut their way through hyena-like gnolls and managed to break their way through the hills in pursuit of the Professor.

On the other side of the board the Allies were struggling to deal with a huge dragon (shown here chomping his way through one unlucky bloke.)

As teams entered the catacombs they moved to a different table representing the “dungeons”. The daring Allies sent a squad into the pyramid, rappelled down into the central temple, fought off the mummies and captured the Professor and were hoisted topside again.

The Axis poured on fire, nearly knocking out the escaping jeep with Professor aboard, but the heroic Allies raced away. A cinematic end to a great game!

It was an awesome game; my son and I had a blast. I consistently recommend Miles’ games to friends, regardless of the genre. They are always fun.

Agent Carter

I managed to snag a spot in Ivor Evans pulpy “Agent Carter” game, based on the exploits of the WW2 Marvel special agent and her nemesis The Red Skull.

I spoke with Ivor a bit about the game and he mentioned he hadn’t quite finished up the table and we’d only be able to play on half of it this year (with plans to complete it to play the other half in a future con). He’s far too modest, as this table was a joy to play on.

Check this out.

Look at all this rubble. Great!

The town square which felt like an organic town rather than  a cluster of buildings plopped on the table. 

Lamp posts, hedges, furniture blasted from the ruins and laying in the rubble strewn streets.

Ivor ran this with the Pulp Alley rules (new to me, but pretty quick to pick up and lots of little bits of strategy to them). I ran Doctor Zola, the bug eyed weird scientist from Captain America who turns into a computer in Captain America 2 (comics!). My teammate ran The Red Skull (awesome!) and we were supported by a cadre of Hydra minions.

We were opposed by Peggy Carter, Tony Stark’s dad and a variety of other heroic sidekicks. Various artifacts littered the battlefield, including Captain America’s shield.

The Red Skull preparing to race towards an artifact hidden at the far end of the battlefield. Doctor Zola and his goons would concentrate on the objectives in the center of the table.

Taking cover behind some boxes, my goons traded fire with the heroes.

The Red Skull approaches the ruined church, the supposed resting place for an object of mystical power.

Egads! Disturbing the church ruins summoned a horde of scarabs that poured from the town’s wishing well (“I wish this well wasn’t full of scarabs.”)

The Red Skull confronts the church artifact’s mysterious protector!

It was a great game. Hydra did very well, claiming three of the artifacts by turn 6. We confidently continued to echange fire with the good guys, but two of our Hyrda goons were wounded in the battle and had to make health rolls to survive. On the last rolls of the game both of our minions bled out, dropping their artifacts and giving wins to Agent Carter and her team! Crazy, hilarious, awesome and so evocative of a pulpy Marvel flick!

Wrap Up

We had a great time, my son is eager to sign up for Fall In, but it’s a bit bittersweet with this being the last year at Fredericksburg. We are not looking forward to the Host for the next Historicon. I know the HGMS Board is in a tough spot regarding financing the conventions, but I fear the Host is only going to exacerbate the shrinking attendance rather than fix it.

For now though I’m home with sacks of goodies to keep me busy for the next few months, and lots of ideas from seeing and playing in so many inventive and thrilling games.

Historicon 2017 – Saturday

Posted on July 16th, 2017 under . Posted by

Sometimes you join a participation wargame and its not quite what you’d hope for. Tons of downtime, unclear goals and rules, fiddly minutia that leaves you feeling every minute of a four hour run time.

But then there are other games that are just magic. Check out photos and a report from my Historicon experience after the jump, in which I lucked into not one but two of those killer games that leave me counting the days to the next convention.


The Vendor Hall

I started the day by hitting the vendor hall. I had a shopping list of bits and pieces I needed to pick up, and my gaming buddy Chris (a Blood and Plunder fanatic) had a number of items he requested I bring back to him. Unable to attend the HGMS cons due to work obligations, he asked me to take some photos of the vendor hall as well to get a better sense of what it was like. Since I shared with him, I figure it would be rude not to share with you as well.

The vendor hall had the usual array of sellers in attendance peddling figures, terrain, games, and peripheral wares associated with wargaming. I chatted with a rep from Shapeways and got some ideas for future projects, spent too much money on things not on my shopping list, and ran into a line of figures I was surprised to see.

They’re Back

The Martians have returned! I picked up some starter boxes during the initial launch a few years ago, but after Architects of War folded I resigned myself to eBaying the few figures I had. Luckily I’m pretty lazy and never got around to it, giving All Quiet on the Martian Front a chance to be acquired by another company and go back into production. I might finally need to get my tripods painted and on the table.

Firelock Games

I had to stop by the Firelock Games booth to check out the new wooden corvette, and to try out their demo table.

Chris Tunez gave my son a run down of the rules in which I learned we’d been playing a number of rules just slightly wrong. Oops! Glad I was able to clear up some misconceptions though!

Other Bits

Wargaming specific lighting effects? I thought I’d have to raid the model railroad shop, but maybe this will work for some projects I have in mind.

“Why is that castle wearing a sombrero?” – my wife.

Old Glory buildings perfect for some Spanish colonies

Games!

Despite only being at the con for about a day, I felt like I was able to play a lot. I got to try a number of demos in the vendor hall (great for getting a taste of different rules systems), scoped out a number of great looking set ups in the main hall, and joined a Shatterlands game (a pretty unique individual skirmish game with randomized character profile cards that include lottery-style scratch of damage trackers!)

Shatterlands character card with scratch off damage trackers
Steampunk/Renaissance game. Lots of airships! 

I got a closer look at the awesome pirate board set up. Fantastic! So many little details, clear “zones” (village, fort, mysterious river, etc.) that made it feel like a real place.

The fort with baggage train

A road snaked its way from the fort to this village.

The village with workers unloading goods.

Beyond the village was a church and other buildings farther into the jungles.
Beyond the church were the wilds with this mysterious river.

Defensive position and rope bridges
I had to strain to get a pic of the dice boxes. They were nestled into the terrain and hard to pick out from the terrain on first glance.

Vine encrusted temples and states with intimidating skulls posted nearby.
Also check out the large plant that dominates the center of the photo. Its just a houseplant sitting on the floor abutting the corner of the table, but added a visual backdrop that enhanced the ambience and provided a sight block to the snack area beyond.

Commando raid with dock security trying to stop them. The yellow circles are pools of light beneath street lamps for this night time battle. I thought that was a neat touch.

Awful Green Things From Outerspace board. In the dark room the lighting worked into the terrain was impressive (but my camera has lightened the whole photo). Talked to some players who ran through it during two different sessions so it sounds like it was fun!

Huge WWII game on table with teddy bear cloth fields covering every inch. So cool.

Allies advancing lengthwise down the 16 foot board along the train tracks.

Axis defending this town that commanded the heights at the end of the board.
All Quiet on the Martian Front battles in the main hall.

I checked in several times Saturday, and either this was a monster game that lasted all day, or there were AQoTMF games being played back to back.

Good to see the alien greeblies back on the table.

SOCOM and Sorcery

I signed up for a spot in Miles Reidy’s WW2 vs Egyptian Fantasy in a pulp three way battle that did not disappoint.

My son and I ran a Fallschirmjäger team with armored car support. Axis and Allies set up on opposite ends of a 16 foot board, our objective to capture Professor Akbar (who took shelter in the catacombs beneath a pyramid in the center of the table)

Our paratrooper ready to move out

The locals weren’t happy to see us.

We initially skirmished with Arab cavalry and sharpshooters lurking in the hills. As we drew closer to the pyramid though, it’s sorcerous influence summoned nefarious supernatural guardians in the best pulp manner.

Our tank was forced to deal with a monstrous troll like guardian.

Our other Axis teams cut their way through hyena-like gnolls and managed to break their way through the hills in pursuit of the Professor.

On the other side of the board the Allies were struggling to deal with a huge dragon (shown here chomping his way through one unlucky bloke.)

As teams entered the catacombs they moved to a different table representing the “dungeons”. The daring Allies sent a squad into the pyramid, rappelled down into the central temple, fought off the mummies and captured the Professor and were hoisted topside again.

The Axis poured on fire, nearly knocking out the escaping jeep with Professor aboard, but the heroic Allies raced away. A cinematic end to a great game!

It was an awesome game; my son and I had a blast. I consistently recommend Miles’ games to friends, regardless of the genre. They are always fun.

Agent Carter

I managed to snag a spot in Ivor Evans pulpy “Agent Carter” game, based on the exploits of the WW2 Marvel special agent and her nemesis The Red Skull.

I spoke with Ivor a bit about the game and he mentioned he hadn’t quite finished up the table and we’d only be able to play on half of it this year (with plans to complete it to play the other half in a future con). He’s far too modest, as this table was a joy to play on.

Check this out.

Look at all this rubble. Great!

The town square which felt like an organic town rather than  a cluster of buildings plopped on the table. 

Lamp posts, hedges, furniture blasted from the ruins and laying in the rubble strewn streets.

Ivor ran this with the Pulp Alley rules (new to me, but pretty quick to pick up and lots of little bits of strategy to them). I ran Doctor Zola, the bug eyed weird scientist from Captain America who turns into a computer in Captain America 2 (comics!). My teammate ran The Red Skull (awesome!) and we were supported by a cadre of Hydra minions.

We were opposed by Peggy Carter, Tony Stark’s dad and a variety of other heroic sidekicks. Various artifacts littered the battlefield, including Captain America’s shield.

The Red Skull preparing to race towards an artifact hidden at the far end of the battlefield. Doctor Zola and his goons would concentrate on the objectives in the center of the table.

Taking cover behind some boxes, my goons traded fire with the heroes.

The Red Skull approaches the ruined church, the supposed resting place for an object of mystical power.

Egads! Disturbing the church ruins summoned a horde of scarabs that poured from the town’s wishing well (“I wish this well wasn’t full of scarabs.”)

The Red Skull confronts the church artifact’s mysterious protector!

It was a great game. Hydra did very well, claiming three of the artifacts by turn 6. We confidently continued to echange fire with the good guys, but two of our Hyrda goons were wounded in the battle and had to make health rolls to survive. On the last rolls of the game both of our minions bled out, dropping their artifacts and giving wins to Agent Carter and her team! Crazy, hilarious, awesome and so evocative of a pulpy Marvel flick!

Wrap Up

We had a great time, my son is eager to sign up for Fall In, but it’s a bit bittersweet with this being the last year at Fredericksburg. We are not looking forward to the Host for the next Historicon. I know the HGMS Board is in a tough spot regarding financing the conventions, but I fear the Host is only going to exacerbate the shrinking attendance rather than fix it.

For now though I’m home with sacks of goodies to keep me busy for the next few months, and lots of ideas from seeing and playing in so many inventive and thrilling games.

Historicon 2017 – Friday

Posted on July 15th, 2017 under . Posted by

I finished up some work after lunch, packed the family in the car and crept down 95 to Historicon, arriving just before registration closed. Despite my late arrival, I managed to snag a spot in a game and check out some of the great looking games nearb…

Historicon 2017 – Friday

Posted on July 15th, 2017 under . Posted by

I finished up some work after lunch, packed the family in the car and crept down 95 to Historicon, arriving just before registration closed. Despite my late arrival, I managed to snag a spot in a game and check out some of the great looking games nearb…

Deathguard modifications & progress so far

Posted on July 10th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

Assembled my 4th (of 5) Deathguard Tactical Squads last night making a few simple modifications along the way. Also took stock of my painting progress from the last 3 weeks and its looking good. Taking a break for a week or two now as School Holidays …

Poxwalkers & 3rd Deathguard Tactical Squad complete

Posted on July 9th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

Making steady progress on my various sets of Dark Imperium Deathguard.  Took a small break from the Marines and had a go at the first lot of Poxwalkers.  As with the Marines they’re amazingly detailed models that really fit together well and …

WIP – 3rd Deathguard Tactical Squad & Poxwalkers

Posted on July 7th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

Nearly finished my 3rd (out of 5) Deathguard Tactical Squads this time with some slight modifications to various models in the unit.  Basically I swapped a few arms around, chopped off some of the weird extra bells & bugs GW seem to love so mu…

Death Guard Tactical Squad #2, Lord of Contagion & Noxious Blightbringer

Posted on June 29th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Starting to smash out my Dark Imperium Death Guard.  2nd Tactical squad finished along with a Lord of Contagion and my first Noxious Blightbringer.   The Blightbringer models are actually pretty cool and look better as Psykers than the Plague…

Death Guard Tactical Squad #2, Lord of Contagion & Noxious Blightbringer

Posted on June 29th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Starting to smash out my Dark Imperium Death Guard.  2nd Tactical squad finished along with a Lord of Contagion and my first Noxious Blightbringer.   The Blightbringer models are actually pretty cool and look better as Psykers than the Plague…

Death Guard Tactical Squad

Posted on June 26th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Going with Death Guard from the new Dark Imperium, swapped my Primaris for another lot and acquired a 3rd so have a fairly sizeable collection of them to get painted now.  Beautiful models, frustrating at times as you keep finding details you’ve m…

Death Guard Tactical Squad

Posted on June 26th, 2017 under , , , , . Posted by

Going with Death Guard from the new Dark Imperium, swapped my Primaris for another lot and acquired a 3rd so have a fairly sizeable collection of them to get painted now.  Beautiful models, frustrating at times as you keep finding details you’ve m…

Blood and Plunder: First Thoughts

Posted on June 20th, 2017 under . Posted by

With my jungles finished, my lanceros painted and my Spanish dwellings ready to be raided, one of my usual gaming buddies Chris and I finally got some of our forces from the Blood and Plunder kickstarter on the table.Being our first game we stumbled th…

Blood and Plunder: First Thoughts

Posted on June 20th, 2017 under . Posted by

With my jungles finished, my lanceros painted and my Spanish dwellings ready to be raided, one of my usual gaming buddies Chris and I finally got some of our forces from the Blood and Plunder kickstarter on the table.Being our first game we stumbled th…

Maelstrom 40k – Round 1 Draw

Posted on June 4th, 2017 under Posted by

8th Ed pre-orders went live this weekend, next weekend is Maelstrom the last 7th Ed 40k tournament to be played here in New Zealand and the week after is when we get all of our 8th Ed 40k stuff so its an exciting time geek wise. Turns out a lot of peop…

Maelstrom 40k – Round 1 Draw

Posted on June 4th, 2017 under Posted by

8th Ed pre-orders went live this weekend, next weekend is Maelstrom the last 7th Ed 40k tournament to be played here in New Zealand and the week after is when we get all of our 8th Ed 40k stuff so its an exciting time geek wise. Turns out a lot of peop…

8th Ed 40k Harlequin rules leaks

Posted on June 2nd, 2017 under , , . Posted by

Unofficially I might have been scanning a PDF copy of new 8th Ed 40k indexes focusing on the Harlequins and there are some very interesting changes to what is turning into my favourite army to paint and play.Points changesSkyweavers slightly cheaper.Tr…

8th Ed 40k Harlequin rules leaks

Posted on June 2nd, 2017 under , , . Posted by

Unofficially I might have been scanning a PDF copy of new 8th Ed 40k indexes focusing on the Harlequins and there are some very interesting changes to what is turning into my favourite army to paint and play.Points changesSkyweavers slightly cheaper.Tr…

Making Jungle Terrain

Posted on June 1st, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

My game group is eager to get started on some Caribbean pirate action with Blood and Plunder, but we’re sorely lacking in appropriate terrain. We assembled some Spanish style resin buildings, but the pine trees, oaks and other temperate vegetation I ha…

Making Jungle Terrain

Posted on June 1st, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

My game group is eager to get started on some Caribbean pirate action with Blood and Plunder, but we’re sorely lacking in appropriate terrain. We assembled some Spanish style resin buildings, but the pine trees, oaks and other temperate vegetation I ha…

Final 7th Ed 40k Tournament ever….

Posted on May 29th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

The weekend after next June 10th/11th marks the last ever 7th Edition 40k tournament here in New Zealand, Maelstrom, and possibly the last time I ever to get run a Soulbursting Reborn Warhost before the new stuff hits the shelves.  Had completely …

Final 7th Ed 40k Tournament ever….

Posted on May 29th, 2017 under , , , . Posted by

The weekend after next June 10th/11th marks the last ever 7th Edition 40k tournament here in New Zealand, Maelstrom, and possibly the last time I ever to get run a Soulbursting Reborn Warhost before the new stuff hits the shelves.  Had completely …

First attempt at Age of Sigmar

Posted on May 13th, 2017 under , , . Posted by

Well I got the General’s handbook and printed out the Compendiums which allowed me to construct a couple of small 500pt(ish) armies based around my WH40k Daemons and ex-WHFB Ogres or Gutbusters as they’re called now.  Played 3 quick games in the e…

First attempt at Age of Sigmar

Posted on May 13th, 2017 under , , . Posted by

Well I got the General’s handbook and printed out the Compendiums which allowed me to construct a couple of small 500pt(ish) armies based around my WH40k Daemons and ex-WHFB Ogres or Gutbusters as they’re called now.  Played 3 quick games in the e…

Drinking the cool aid with AoS

Posted on May 8th, 2017 under Posted by

Think I’ve gotten over my bitterness with the demise of 8th Ed WHFB… got this today

Drinking the cool aid with AoS

Posted on May 8th, 2017 under Posted by

Think I’ve gotten over my bitterness with the demise of 8th Ed WHFB… got this today