Saturday, January 24, 2015

Another turn of Die Fighting II

Managed another turn today with ongoing solo game.
Quite a lot of Cavalry combat due to multiple Cavalry Action cards being turned.
As I play I am noting an overall streamlining of the game system compared to original DF.
Several 'chrome' type rules have gone such as Blown Cavalry, and indeed Skirmisher rules these are replaced by entries on the Period Templates or the use of the Black Dice and therefore less of a rules overhead to remember.
Cannot find a firm definition of how units count for "supporting both flanks" (think it was discussed on Repique Rules forum ?) or if or how multiple unit melees occur and one or two rules/concepts take a couple of readings to sink in but otherwise so far have always found an answer on the 'Quick Sheet', the PDF or the Period rules.
Really liking the ability to restock Resource Dice per Command and the CinCs ability to 'share' his hoard of Resources which is a key Command aspect in the game.
The card phasing system works well with the unknown factor of which cards are in the Discard pile each turn. 
I enjoyed the old DF variants for card phasing but this is again an easier system to play and yet still evokes a good game narrative.
So far so good will be interesting to see how the Infantry clash goes.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Die Fighting II using Seven Years War kit

Trying out the new version of Die Fighting by Bob Jones in solo venture using my Seven Years War Prussians and Russians.
I used Warfare In Age Of Reason to roll up a tabletop and used the dice values of units from original Die Fighting to generate a couple of reasonably equal forces but with Prussians attacking as such.
Rolled for Leader qualities but stuck with generic values for units (ie Elites are Crack, Line are Average, etc).
I used Bobs suggested x 3 initial dice per command (instead of x2) to generate Resource dice.
The new card system is very nice (I thought I might miss the more varied system of DF but no) with a maximum of 6 phases per turn out of a basic 8 card deck (I placed some of the solo type cards into Russian deck).
This works well to generate usual Bob Jones turn chaos !! my favourite method of gaming especially when going solo.
Already this has seen the Russian Cavalry Brigade on their right get the drop on opposing Prussian mounted.
However they failed to cause any damage and indeed lost (albeit narrowly) the initial Melee Combats.
Artillery has only just got targets and Prussian Infantry are advancing steadily.
The moving and combat systems are essentially the same as in original DF with a few tweaks to the Dice Templates outcomes with main one being addition of 'Black dice'.
These are 'awarded' if a melee lost badly and are rolled as a minus total (this was late optional rule in DF) but can be rallied off.
All the usual re-rolls of lowest and multiples dice, extra 'Free' dice, Command dice are present from original rules still based on varying troop quality and tactical circumstances.
Also now a loss of 13+ dice results in a destroyed unit rather than just a costly Rout, I like this as DF felt a bit bloodless at times.

Biggest and most welcome change is the generation of Resource Dice.
In DF this was based on unit values to generate an overall army total but in DFII it is now based on Commander quality.
Each Commander generates his own pool of dice with the CinC having a 'bucket' he can distribute to other commands at start or during game.
Also on the Restore card (Known as 4R card) the Commanders get to roll to regenerate used dice.
This I really like as in DF the resource dice seemed to dwindle rapidly especially when attacking whereas now they can be restored and indeed Inert Brigades can accumulate a good old stock.
Will be interesting to see how this pans out over course of full game which I hope to complete over next few evenings or so.

Only real downside for me is the PDF style rules (combined with a nice video presentation) as I would still prefer a good old style printed set, but that is just the old curmudgeon in me !!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Yet more Combat Commander played

Played another three scenarios of this addictive game with my Dad.
Scenarios were re-plays of scenarios 2, 3 + 4 from CC:E.
Excellent games again with me winning the first fairly easily and my Dad the next two but with both going right to the wire.
Tense exciting stuff despite having played these before (although when first got game and it seems ages ago).
Intention is to play through the CC:E scenarios (already done all the CC:Med) then onto Stalingrad and Normandy again.

Only managed to take pics of last two games as so engrossed in first game I forgot !


Saturday, January 17, 2015

Shako II French vs Russians 1813

Played a game with Shako II rules today versus Stephen at my gaff. 
We used a points system off the Shako web site which worked well
I fielded 2 Infantry Divisions of Young Guard and a Regular Infantry Division backed up by a Guard Cavalry Division and a Regular Division with 4 Batteries of guns. 
The Russians had 4 Infantry Divisions and 2 Cavalry Divisions with 6 Gun Batteries. 
French were attackers so I got 2 mire Regular units.
Really like the orders system and all the systems work well.
Melee is a decisive as the loser always 'falls back' which is essentially in broken status with only a single chance to rally otherwise removed from game.
Great game and we are inspired to try them again (although Die Fighting 2 still needs an outing)

Monday, January 12, 2015

Turning Point Stalingrad played and some AFVs painted (yesyou heard correctly paint applied !!!)

Managed to play a live game of this classic title with my Dad last evening. Great stuff with Russians hanging on to riverbank aided by a couple of short days for the Germans.
Love these area/zone games as lots of anguishing decisions to make as to where to take an action against a ticking clock.
Stalingrad has an added twist in that units which are involved in combat can be Disrupted for 1 - 4 days !! This means a good deal of planning required to plan each days actions especially for the German player (Russian more reactive).
The map board (mounted) is a joy to the eyes and so many evocative locations thereon.
The counter are old school compared to modern games but perfectly functional and good large size.
The rule book is comprehensive but boy is it badly laid out with important rules 'hidden' in blocks of text or in an unexpected section.
Game ended after first week with Germans coming up short of the 7 VP required (tournament scenario) achieving only 5.
I have tried this on Vassal but as ever so much better in live and tactile environment as I tend to miss things on biggish maps in Vassal at times.
Good time had with an older title from the late great Avalon Hill stable.

Also managed over course of past few weeks to paint (gasp ! shock !!) up several 15mm AFVs that have been languishing unloved.
Just need some decals/numbers applied.
I had planned a game of Battlegroup Overlord but sadly work got in the way again.
Note these are sitting on a newly acquired gaming mat which is quite nice being of a 'tea towel' type material.
Needs a good ironing and maybe the white edging hidden underneath otherwise good to go.