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Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Bretwalda - WAB Age of Arthur Gaming Day, Peterborough 25.11.12

On Sunday, Peterborough Wargames Club hosted the Age of Arthur gaming day 'Bretwalda'. We had players from as far afield as Nottingham, Halifax and Folkestone, as well as a few from Yaxley and some from the club. There were 14 players in all and I MC'd the day (we had one chap pull out at the last, so I was unable to play, which was actually something of a blessing as I was knackered from playing gig with my band the night before and it allowed me to organise, score and support with queries.)

Our premise was simple:

1. Factions: This lends an element of team play to proceedings. With 14 players, it was 2 factions of 7. One faction represented the Britons under Vortigern, ably supported by Frank and Saxon allies. The other was the Saxon faction under Hengest who were trying to steal the British land.
2. Cardboard silver and gold crowns: Each faction leader wore a crown to denote their sovereignty. This added to the general fun and, as neither leader was 'usurped' during the day, they wore them all day...even to the pub at lunchtime...ahem....
3. A Map of Britannia. This was purely to aid the scoring system - there was no complex map movement. Each player owned a kingdom within their faction area. Each kingdom had 3 coloured pins representing provinces. If they lost a battle 'mightily', they surrendered a province to the enemy faction.
4. Chocolate Coins and cardboard treasure boxes: Representing faction wealth. If a player lost a battle in a close run defeat, he surrendered one gold coin from his faction's purse to the opposing faction
5. Doubles Games Pitched Battles in Round 1: Helps players who don't know each other to get involved and start talking - a great ice-breaker (learned from Scrivs' and Tom's game days...thanks chaps!) Obviously with 14 players, we needed a singles game too, so we set the kings against each other!
6. Scenarios: Games that actually meant something! We used some from the supplement, plus two written by Mike Whitaker and myself and one written by James Morris for an event I went to when Age of Arthur was first released. We allowed the kings to allocate their forces to the games in round 2 and 3.

Though I say so myself, it all worked rather well!!

Pics from Round 1 below...

The Map before we started
A view down the tables: Vortigern's crew on the left and Hengest on the right as you  look at it
Hengest (Phil M) in 'Warlord' mode
Dan's Romano Brits (well...actually my models) and Tony's Saxons line up against Andy's and Tom's Saxons
Grahame and Dave with the Franks (right) against Carl and Andy Mac with Saxons
Rival Kings face off...Vortigern (Scrivs, left) and Hengest (Phil, right)
Andy Mac dicing off in combat against Dave's Franks
Mike and Stephen survey the Romano-British/Welsh alliance facing them 
Battle is joined!!
The Crunch!!!
Pics from Round 2 below....

Dan and Tom in the Scouting clash - "we wants the hill and the pretty little hovel..."
Hengest (Phil) takes on Tony at the battle of Badon
Vortigern (Scrivs) takes on Mike in the woods of Cat Coit Celidon
Dave's Franks take on Stephen's Saxons in the cattle Raid (note Stephen's 'ghost' Duguth...)
Grahame's Franks take on Andy's Saxons trying to loot a wagon train with pilgrims near Wansford
Reuben tries to winkle Carl's Saxons out of the watchtower
Andrew's Romano-Brits defend Chester against Andy Mac's Saxons with the aid of some praying monks who add 2D6 'oracles' to his combat resolutions..if Andy Mac kills the Monks before the oracles are used up, they go to the Saxons

The map at the end of Round 2. Vortigern is gaining the upper hand...
Pics From Round 3 Below...

Andy Mac takes on Scrivs in the scouting clash
Grahame's Franks prepare to take Mt Badon from Mike
Dave's Franks take on Carl's Saxons in Cat Coit Celidon
Reuben's Welsh take on Andy's Saxons in the cattle raid
Andrew's Romano-Brits successfully defend the watchtower from Tom's Saxons
Stephen defends Chester against Tony in Saxon-on-Saxon action
Dan's Romano British take on Hengest's Saxons at Wansford
The map at the end: Victory to Vortigern!

So, the Vortigern faction won by virtue of taking more Saxon land, despite a heroic last ditch attempt from Hengest to rally his men to deeds of herosim...

The overall title of 'Bretwalda' couldn't have been harder-fought, as Scrivs (Vortigern), Phil (Hengest and Andrew Beer were all in first place with 9 scoring points (an ingeniously simple system) Overall victory went to Andrew because he won 3 mighty victories, whereas both Scrivs and Phil won two, but managed to kill an enemy general or two on the way...

Overall, most people seemed to have a lot of fun, which is the only way I measure success in these things! I would like to thank Tom and Scrivs whose own events at Eye of The Storm in the past year provided inspiration for us to have a go, to all at the club, but especially Mike, Grahame and Reuben for sterling organisational help and to all of the players who travelled from near and far to play toy soldiers with us. Here's to next year (I'm already plotting some ideas...)

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

I won a Liebster award!!

Courtesy of the very kind 'Headologist' I have received the above accolade. Here is what he wrote:

"For Dark Ages wargaming galore, some great battle reports and possibly the most gorgeously coverted and painted Welsh and British Kingdoms miniatures there are - a great inspiration for my Spears of Mawdryn - check out Andy's blog."

Thank you very much indeed, sir! You are very kind.
I was also listed in the top 5 of Mr Mike 'Trouble At T'Mill' Whitaker (of whom, more later...) for which I am also very grateful.

I'm always genuinely pleased when my humble efforts are appreciated!

So, given that I have been awarded the accolade, I pass on to you the rules for these awards...

1. Copy and paste the award on your blog linking it to the blogger who has given it you.

2. Pass the award to your top 5 favorite blogs with less than 200 followers by leaving a comment on one of there posts to notify them that they have won the award and listing them on your own blog.

3. Sit back and bask in the warm fuzzy feeling that comes with knowing you have made someone's day!

4. There is no obligation to pass this onto someone else but its nice if you take the time to do so.

I may struggle with time to put comments on all these to notify them (see bottom of post for why I'm a bit busy), they are...

My favourite 5 blogs (in no particular order):

Trouble At T' Mill My club-mate, fellow Age of Arthur and Dux Brit enthusiast and all-round fabulous chap Mike, whose sheer variety of post topics gains him the award. There is always something of interest on Mike's blog with so many fine details and he does write some rather cool narrative reports for our Dux Brit campaign!!

Tom's Toy Soldiers Tom gains the award for some of the most humorously entertaining battle reports you'll ever read. I always have a good chuckle when reading Tom's reports and recommend that you check 'em out if you haven't already done so, especially his WAB and Saga reports. If you aren't smiling afterwards, I'll be very surprised!!!

The Leutnant's Diary If you think I paint good Dark Age stuff, visit this blog for some truly epic freehand weathered shield designs and overall mastery of the brush whatever he is painting. Absolutely staggering stuff!!!

The Wargames Table Matt and I have followed each other's blogs for ages. He paints cool stuff and makes cool scenery. He's also well into War & Conquest, which, although I have never played, is clearly a rather fabulous alternative to WAB if you are sick of that particular game or are weeping at its demise and want a similar (but different enough) type of gaming experience.

Dr Phil Hendry's Blog  Ok, technically, this isn't a blogspot blog, but I have to mention it because this man has revolutionised my approach to painting. He has proved to me that the Army Painter dip is NOT just a load of stinky, sticky gloop, but is actually a superb painting tool. So much so that I now paint pretty much everything using it as I have completed nearly all my 'top drawer first choice show off my layer painting skill' armies and am now onto my 'get them looking good for the table and reduce the lead mountain' armies. Interestingly, since following Dr Hendry and adapting his technique to my own style, I have managed to strike just the right balance between 'decent painting speed' and 'models that look real nice'. If you remain unconvinced, check out Dr Phil's 3rd century Romans and Sassanids and be amazed!!! Also check out my FIW Native Americans and WW1 Brits to see how I have adapted Dr Hendry's technique...

So, there we are. Well done to all the above. There are LOADS of other great ones but the 5 above are my most frequently-visited...

Right...back to the painting table, as I have 25 more trees to base before our mega Age of Arthur WAB day on Sunday.

Toodle Pip!