My good, old friend John just put some new music up on bandcamp. As far as I know, he hasn’t made music in a while (no for public consumption at least), but this is fantastic stuff. Please listen and download…
We set out with the following ideas in mind for our game:
- It should be small scale (as in size of battle, not size of miniatures), with only a squad or two on each side for each game.
- It should not be winnable at the army building stage through combinations of killer units.
- It should be scenario based.
- It should be winnable through tactical skill, but there should be a significant random element to contend with.
- It doesn’t need to be balanced, as war very seldom is (either in SF or real life), and as it is scenario based, any ideas about balance can come in at the scenario design stage.
So the basic concepts that the rest of the game is built on are:
- Each model represents one person/entity.
- Each person/entity is the member of a squad, but this does not dictate anything about their behaviour (the squad don’t all have to take the same actions as each other, or stay together). Remaining together will give benefits to the squad, mostly morale-based.
- Each ‘side’ takes it in turns to move all of their models, and this will possibly be split into phases (if it ain’t broke, don’t fix) but the order in which players move is determined in each turn. This means that you might go last in one turn, but first in the next.
- We will not have complex, point based army lists for factions or races. Instead, models can be ‘skinned’ with various layers (e.g. race, squad, individual), giving different benefits or hindrances.
- The level of training that a model has will also be important to their abilities to do certain things.
- The results of damaging a model will be determined by a race/faction specific damage table.
My friend Chris and I run our school’s wagames club. We have a reasonable regular attendance of kids playing mostly 40k, and we both have a small 40k force to use in games against them. We are both, however, starting to find that system a little bit horrible to play. Our vision for the club is to help the kids actually learn from the game they are playing -getting them to think about strategies and planning ahead. This is very hard to do with 40k, as the system lends itself much more to just creating the best list possible and killing as many of the enemy as you can (even with an objective game, this normally ends up being the best thing to do). We have tried making them play scenarios or think about things in a different way, but it is not going well so we’ve decided to abandon the system entirely.
Our solution is to create several ‘participation’ style games that we can run for the kids, requiring no prior knowledge of the rules on their part (rules knowledge is also a massive problem among the kids of today, partly fuelled by the inept running of games at our local GW), but that force them to make tactical decisions. We looked around for a while for new sets of rules but they all came out as too expensive or too experimental, and neither of us could really stomach the idea of learning a whole new set, so we’ve decided to write our own rules, meaning that we can make them exactly how we want them.
I’m going to blog about this as we go along, sharing the different ideas that we’ve come up with as we go along. We don’t intend on selling this in any way, and even if we did we probably wouldn’t be able to as we’ve ‘borrowed’ a fair few mechanics from other games already. Wherever we have done this, I will credit where we got the idea from and point you in the direction of those games.
I just tested this beer after about a week in the fermenter. It’s down to 1019 from 1040, leaving about 3-5 points to go (target is 14 but I’ll settle for 16). I reckon I’ll leave it in the fermenter for another week, partly out of convenience and partly to try and get as much sediment as possible to settle out before kegging it.
Check out this awesomeness that is Henry Ireland’s latest triumph…