I got together with my family yesterday to celebrate several of our birthdays. I received some of the old RAFM Call of Cthulu figures, and a really cool tin litho rocket that my sister found in Spain. My parents got me some sets of figures I’ve been wanting for a long time.
FASA makes the coolest palaces and locations from the Flash Gordon comic trips for gaming: http://www.hangar18fasa.com/flash_gordon_42.html The space ships are a little more than an inch long. If you check out the Web page, you’ll see that there are several. My parents got me the complete set of locations.
A couple of years ago, I got my hands on a bunch of plastic space ships that were meant to be markers for a board game based on the 1970’s Buck Rogers television show. The ships are about the same size. I think these all will mix well with the War Rocket figures I’ve been painting as well. I can’t wait to get started on them, but that will have to wait until after Historicon.
As Candy and the kids are in Florida with her mom this weekend, I had a relaxing Fathers’ Day of painting. Actually, I fiddled on the computer and took naps on and off until noon. Then I got up and began to paint.
Sergeant Major Miniatures has a set of figures called “The Crew,” which are the crew from Firefly. Since I have my figure for Historicon all painted, I decided to paint these today for fun.
In high school I used to run a Traveller game loosely based on Alien and The Awful Green Things from Outer Space. The alien creature on the ship went through several stages of metamorphsis. In each stage, the alien was more or less susceptible to different types of weapons. In The Awful Green Things, you randomly determine the kinds of damage that cans of zgwortz, ray pistols, etc. do to the aliens. This works the same way; however, the players have to figure it out again each time the alien changes.
I’ll do this as a game for a HAWKs night, but if it is even half as fun as my high school game, I’ll take it to a convention. Of course, instead of using Traveller, I’ll use G.A.S.L.I.G.H.T.
The second game we played at FusonCon was the fourth installment of my Duke Morrison “story arc.”
I have run episode three several times. The “consensus” outcome of these several iterations was that part of Professor Naninni’s anti-gravity ray device was stolen and his daughter Gianna Naninni captured by the Venusians and their minions. In episode four, Duke Morrison and his buddies have traced the daughter and the equipment to a small Middle Eastern town in the desert.
The laboratory was on the second story of one of the buildings where Dr. Zillion was attempting to get the device working. Gianna was being “interviewed” on the second floor of another building. Finally, the safe in which the Venusians hold the money they use to pay their gangster minions is in a third building. These locations were unknown to the good guys. The bad guys were deployed within the town. Most of the good guys came from outside the town, on the other side of the wall, across broken ground.
There was a wrinkle for the Venusians. The gangsters decided that instead of working for the money that the Venusians doled out to them in small doses, that they could just steal the safe with all the money. A secondary objective for the gangsters, therefore, was to find and steal the safe.
Getting wind that an attack was imminent, the Venusians deployed on the rooftops. From that vantage they could see the advancing good guys. Now in previous instances of Duke Morrison games, the Venusians, with their Shoot number of 7, have done little damage. I was therefore surprised — and worried — when the Venusians began picking off “Boats” Morgan and his sailors. Boats and his team never reached the wall.
GASLIGHT, however, has a way of evening things out over time.
Meanwhile, Duke and a couple of his men raced to the wall of the town, where the found a conveniently-placed ladder. There were several entry points along the wall, but Duke determined to scale the wall to approach from an unexpected path.
At about the same time, Crash Corrigan and his rocket commandos landed on the roof of one of the buildings. After a quick melee with some female Venusians — which Crash and his folks may well have enjoyed, given the shapeliness of the average Venusian female’s figure — they rushed downstairs. During the melee, a Venusian woman threw one of the rocket men over the lip of the building. When he hit the ground, his rocket pack exploded, damaging the Model T that another group of Venusians had just gotten started.
Crash lost his two troopers in the roof scuffle, but he found Dr. Zillion inside the building, deeply involved in his experiments to recreate Professor Naninni’s anti-gravity ray. Crash dispatched the traitorous Dr. Zillion by throwing him into the machinery. He was incinerated, but so was Crash.
It was about this time that it seemed everyone who tried to fire jammed their weapons, including a Venusian woman who melted herself when her ray rifle exploded.
As the battle was raging at the town wall and inside Zillion’s lab, some of the thugs found and stole the safe. They didn’t want to take time to open it, so four of them carried it to a waiting Model T. The Venusians meanwhile suspected the gangsters were not being forthright and after several attempts melted the engine of the car. “Wrench” web had scaled the wall. Seeing the gangsters getting ready to drive off, he leapt on top of the car, fell through the canvass, killed the driver, threw him out the windshield, and then followed him out the broken window. The gangsters then became desperate to get the money, so they set a grenade near the safe and ran. The grenade didn’t blow up the safe, but it made a mess of the upholstery.
Some Turkish constabulary arrived to restore order. Earlier in the game, Brooks’ minions (minions of Torpedo Brooks) had stolen the gasoline truck from the small airstrip. They had been driving around the town, enjoying the Spring weather, just looking for a target for a dastardly and nefarious act. Just as the turks had eliminated Ugati (Zillion’s sidekick) and Wrench Web was on the verge of finding Gianna Naninni, Brooks ran his truck at the Turkish squad. He ran over a Turkish soldier and left from the vehicle just before it crashed into the wall and exploded, killing two more Turks.
While all this was going on, Duke Morrison had been run over and shot by another group of Venusian, then dragged into a building. Morrison’s loyal troops attempted to rescue him. They were aided by an errant shot from a Venusian female, which missed one of Morrison’s soldiers and hit one of he Venusians guarding Morrison’s limp body.
At this point, I judged the game has hit its culminating point. Morrison had been captured. Boats was knocked out. Crash Corrigan was hiding. Most of the Venusians were dead. I called the game a minor Venusians victory. They retained Gianna Naninni as a hostage and captured Duke Morrison, but their lab and Dr. Zillion had been destroyed.
Since my wife and kids are out of town for a few days visiting her mom, I went to War Horse Farm for “FusonCon,” a gaming day with some of the folks from the Frederick, MD, and Gettysburg area. We played Chris’ Look, Sarge, WWII game in the morning and a Pulp, GASLIGHT game in the afternoon.
The scenario involves two German infantry battalions crossing a river in rafts in Russia 1941, while an armored battalion and a recon battalion cross at a small bridge and a ford. The bridge so rickety that only one platoon can cross per activation. When the game starts, one company of tanks is already across. The Russians are trying to stop the Germans from seizing the town and three surrounding hills. Chris has run this game several times, but in this iteration, the Germans came closest to meeting their objectives.
All the players had a good time. There was a lot of maneuver. Nearly all the players were new, many recruited by Sam from his unit.
The Russian infantry battalion that started on the board pushed forward to delay the Germans while they awaited the arrival or a Russian tank battalion and an infantry battalion.
The German infantry pushed across the river with little difficulty. The Russian infantry guarding the crossing initially inflicted a number of casualties on the Germans, but eventually numbers — and artillery — prevailed. The infantry then pushed steadily forward. One battalion was heavily engaged on one of the surrounding hills with a reinforcing Russian infantry battalion, while the other German battalion mopped up the initial Russian defenders and moved toward the town.
By this time the town was fully occupied by armored cars and Russian tanks, but there was no Russian infantry in the town.
The German armor pushed up the road toward the town. The lost several platoons from an anti-tank gun and a bunker had blunted the German advance. The Russians also had some infantry in the woods along the road. At this point the German armored battalion command left the road, pushed through a wheat field and moved to the outskirts of the town. Neither side had any infantry near the town, so the fight became a slugging match between tanks. The town only provided modest cover, since it was only made of wooden structures.
When we quit, the Germans were on the outskirts of the town — in fact they had one platoon of halftracks in the town. They were battling the Russians for control of one of the surrounding hills and were poised to assault a second one. It was time to quit and start the second game, but with another half hour of play, I think the Germans would have won.
You never use an umbrella because the rain will be over in five minutes.
A good parking place has nothing to do with distance from the store, but everything to do with shade.
You can tell the difference between fire ant bites and mosquito bites.
Anything under 70 degrees is chilly.
You’ve driven through Yeehaw Junction.
You know that… no other grocery store can compare to Winn Dixie.
You know that anything under a Category 3 just isn’t worth waking up for.
You dread love bug season.
You are on a first name basis with the Hurricane list. They aren’t Hurricane Charley or Hurricane Frances. You know them as Andrew, Charley, Frances, Ivan, Jeanne, Wilma, Irene, Cheryl, Rita, Mary, Alison.
You know what a snowbird is and when they’ll leave!
You think a six-foot alligator is actually pretty average.
‘Down South’ means Key West .
Flip-flops are everyday wear.
Shoes are for business meetings and church, but you HAVE worn flip flops to church before.
You have a drawer full of bathing suits, and one sweatshirt.
You get annoyed at the tourists who feed seagulls.
A mountain is any hill 100 feet above sea level.
You know the four seasons really are: Hurricane season, love bug season, tourist season and summer.
You’ve hosted a hurricane party.
You can pronounce Okeechobee, Kissimmee, Withlacoochee, Thonotosassa and Micanopy.
You understand why it’s better to have a friend with a boat, than have a boat yourself.
You were 25 when you first met someone who couldn’t swim.
You’ve worn shorts and used the A/C on Christmas and New Years.
Today, we celebrate the 237th birthday of our Army.
For 237 years, our Soldiers, Civilians and Families have been the strength of our Nation in peace and at war.
Today, America’s Army is engaged in nearly 150 countries around the world, on 6 of 7 continents, with over 94,000 Soldiers deployed today and 94,000 forward stationed. Our Nation depends on its Army to defend the shores of our homeland, defeat enemy forces abroad, and help with recovery efforts in the wake of natural disasters.
We have the best equipped, best trained, and best led Army in history because of the 1.1 million professional Soldiers who serve in the Active Army, Army National Guard and Army Reserve, as well as the dedicated service of our Army Civilians. It is our Army’s competence, adaptability, moral character, and resolute commitment that defines us as professionals and guarantees our long-standing sacred trust with the American people.
I’m proud of your accomplishments, your sacrifice, and your selfless dedication to our Army and to the Nation. Today, on its 237th birthday, we honor our Army and the remarkable men and women, past and present, who have embraced our Nation’s call to service. Army Strong!
Raymond T. Odierno
General, 38th Chief of Staff
United States Army
The Strength of our Nation is our Army
The Strength of our Army is our Soldiers
The Strength of our Soldiers is our Families
This is what makes us “Army Strong!”
The HAWKs have been working on a zombie club project. Many of us have painted zombies. Our next phase is to build a shopping mall. Each of us will create one or two stores which will be assembled into a mall. I’m making a clothing store and a gaming store. Inside the gaming store are going to be some gamers when the zombies attack. Most are from Victory Force.
These two are from Victory Force. The game in the Charlie Brown shirt is from a Reaper miniatures pack, called “geeks.”
These two figures are part of that same Reaper “geeks” pack.
These a part of the gamers from Victory Force.
These old timers are also from Victory Force. While not “gamers,” these are going to be useful in the mall.
While waiting for colors to dry, I also worked on these 10mm Eureka beast men, including a couple bases of skirmishers. These are for Look, Sarge, No Charts: Fantasy, Ancients, and Mediaeval.
The Third Doctor in hand-to-whisk combat with a Dalek. He had invented something that stunned the Daleks and set their Save roll to 2.
In addition to my Captain America GASLIGHT game, I also ran a Dr. Who game at Origins. WARNING: If you are a Doctor Who purist, you may be offended by this scenario! I combined many of my favorite characters to create a scenario that was fun, interesting, and exciting.
Other than Christopher Eccelston, my favorite doctor is John Pertwee, the Third Doctor. My favorite companion is Elizabeth Shaw, a professor and scientist who only grudgingly gets involved with UNIT and the Doctor. I like her becuase — aside from tremendous legs — she can go toe-to-toe with the doctor and actually contributes to the solution of his dilemmas. So far, so good, but I also added K-9 and Romana I (from the Fourth Doctor), because I like them. How dare I?!
The scenario was based on the Pertwee series, The Green Death, but I used Elizabeth Shaw instead of the largely useless Jo Grant. In this scenario, Global Chemicals, whose head has been hypnotized by the BOSS (a computer) has created mutant worms through the polution they create from their new process. As the scenario begins, Global Chemicals guards must keep everyone away from the worms — they are trying to avoid scandal. The home guard, led by Lieutenant Lethbridge-Stewart is trying to destroy the worms, because they are dangerous. The Doctor, Romana, and Elizabeth are trying to protect this new life form. Meanwhile, townspeople are protesting outside the gates of Global Chemicals; so the guards are bludgeoning them, dragging them through the gate, and letting BOSS hypnotize them. By the end of the game, the BOSS and the Global Chemicals guards had a sizable force of “zombies” that they used as human shields as they blazed away at the home guardsmen. As the scenario unfolded, however, it was discovered that the worms poop Jethric, which we know from The Ribos Operation, is a very rare and valuable substance. At that moment, Sontarans and Daleks landed to capture some Jethrick-producting worms. Objectives changed; now the Doctor and his friends began working with the home guard to destroy the worms, rather than letting them fall into the hands of the evil Sontarans or Daleks.
In this picture you can see the Sontaran drop ships as well as the Global Chemicals compound.
The changing objectives worked well, because the players didn’t seem to mind. At this point, Romana, the Doctor, and Liz were busy trying to invent things to help fight off the two sets of invaders. Lieutent Lethbridge -Stewart mistakenly identified the Sontarans as “Jerry Paratroopers” and led a hell-for-leather assault on them, backed up by a Churchill tank. By the end of the game, Stewart was unconcious, the tank was knocked out, and most of his men were killed. There was even a brief exchange between the Daleks and the Sontarans, resulting in half the Sontarns failing morale, dragging a bit of Jethrick into a shuttle, and blasting off for orbit.
Romana invented a force field, which was fortunate. She had been attacked and bitten by one of the radioactive worms and only had a few turns to make it to the TARDIS or she would die. The force field allowed her to slip past the Daleks and make it to the TARDIS in time to save herself — just in the nick of time. The Doctor invented a device that reduced the Daleks’ Scuffle number to 2. This was handy, because Liz invented a device that gave her a Save Roll Modifier of +5 against Daleks. While K-9 was busy trying to kill worms, the Doctor and Liz teamed up to defeat two Daleks in hand-to-whisk combat.
A wide veiw of the table prior to the action commencing
The game was fun, and the players were fun — particularly the player who controlled Lethbridge-Stewart. Sometimes players have fun, but they aren’t fun to GM. For this game, I had a great group who really seemed to enjoy the game. Interestingly, there was someone in the game (six of six who pre-registered for the game showed up) who wasn’t at all familiar with the stories, but he seemed to have fun as well.
The fate of those who mix Doctors with the wrong companions in their games — Exterminate! Exterminate!
Both Friday and Saturday nights we went back to our rooms at the end of the nigth and watched a couple of Tom Baker Doctor Who episodes.
I ran a Captain America game using GASLIGHT at Origins 2012. Chris, Dave, Greg, and I wanted to attend Origins, because none of us had been in many years. We have a lot of awareness of our rules on the East Coast and the West Coast, but not in the middle of the country. We wanted to hawk our wares at Origins.
I ran a Dr. Who game, which typically I forgot to photograph. I ran two LSNC: Napoleonic Wars games. Finally, Saturday night I ran my Captain America game.
The scenario involved Captain America at the head of the howling commandos leading a raid to blow up some experimental equipment and collect some secrets.
The commandos were trying to destroy an experimental flying saucer, three experimental tanks, and two flying wings. The commandos cut through the fence line to get into compound. They cut to ribbons the first Germans squad that tried to stand in their way. The second German squad, however, took cover in some woods and blazed away at the Americans. The Americans decided to close into hand-to-hand combat, which was a mistake, since the Americans had much better Shoot numbers. While the melee was going on, a squad of commandos managed to blow up the flying saucer and both flying wings. They finally broke through the German squad and dashed for a building which contained one of the secrets (the Americans didn’t know where the secrets were hidden). At the other end of the table a team of commandos blew up one of the tanks.
When the game ended, the Americans had 17 points, had captured the Red Skull, and had knocked the Germans were down to about 50% strength. The Germans had killed 15 Americans, so the game was a minor American victory. The Americans had lost many of the characters from the Captain America comic books in the multi-turn melee near the flying wings.
In the end, I think all the players had a good time.
Origins was interesting and fun, but there were very few miniatures games and even fewer historical games. Lots of cards, role playing, live action role playing, and general board games. The theory of wandering girls in chain mail bikinis sounds good; in practice almost none of them could pull it off. I only saw one all weekend who was in the least bit attractive — a cave girl with a spear. Most weighed more than a horse, and many were using the convention as an excuse to wander about with their boobs largely exposed. There were several male costumes, like “steampunk” Santa, a Han Solo, and some Dr. Who lookalikes, that were interesting. Next year, I think we’ll try to attend Nashcon. Our plan is to hit the big three HMGS East conventions, Barrage, and one “other” convention each year.