My blog about my wargaming activities. I collect a lot of 15mm miniatures for the American War of Independence and so collect a lot of rules for this period. I started miniatures with Napoleonics, so I have a number of armies in 6mm and 15mm figures for skirmishing. I have15mm WW II figures that I use for Flames of War, Memoir '44, and someday, Poor Bloody Infantry. Finally there is my on-again, off-again relationship with paper soldiers that I sometimes write about.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Oinking good fun

Jim brought by some Dark Ages troops and we played a Pig Wars scenario. I thought I had played them before, but the more I think about it, the more I realize it was just described to me. So this was my chance to try them out.

The scenario was some (20) poor, untrained peasant villagers defending themselves against (20) battle-hardened, armored Viking raiders. [gulp] Good thing the villagers built a wall! Still, I thought the villagers were as good as dead, but I was willing to give it a go.

The village basically had one log gate and the rules were such that the gate could be dismantled, but it made the warriors attempting it vulnerable (had to put down weapon and shield) AND two of them had to succeed. I put my villager with a miner's pick in front of it, along with an experienced club man and waited.

The Vikings attacked the gates and walls and the villagers got a string of good rolls, killing Viking after Viking attempting to dismantle the gate. The Vikings at the walls weren't much better. Almost all of them fell in a string of Villager moves. Eventually the Vikings had to morale check and passed.

The crack in the defense came when the Viking chief got into combat (Elite, Full Armor, Sword) and killed my villager defending the corner of the wall. This allowed the Vikings to leap over the wall. Next thing I know there are three inside the wall and I am dying when beaten by 1 PIP. I was sure the game was over.

But, the villagers got their card, counter-attacked and slaughtered a Viking (while losing two of their own), requiring both sides check morale. The villagers get a modified 6, forcing the weakest to run for the hills (literally). The Vikings, on the other hand, get a '2' and the force routs! (Well, the leader is standing there blustering at his cowardly warriors, but he leaves to track them down.)

In the end the Vikings lost 10 men, 4 of which were fully armored. (He did NOT have good die rolls.) The villagers lost four militia and two trained men.

Rules Summary

Jim prefers the dice method instead of using cards for casualty resolution (he has some conversion chart), but it altered the odds of success just a bit! Basically it made Fully Armored warriors much harder to kill, and all of the villagers counted as Fully Armored as long as they were fighting from behind the wall, so...

The rules are pretty simple. Like The Sword and the Flame you use cards to determine which side goes next with a unit. As we each had only one unit, it basically determined who went next. I think we did this wrong though, as I believe you are supposed to make cards for your units and use those, not use playing cards. So, using that method you could end up moving twice in a row, but never three times in a row.

Combat is also simple. Each side draws a card and adds that to a weapon value, combat value, and tactical modifiers. The weapon value is generally a 1 or 2, the combat value is 0 through 3, and there aren't many tactical modifiers, although there are some that we missed. The problem was we were using a D6 instead of a card value so our base number was 1 through 6 while a card's number is 1 through 13. So, if you have to beat your opponent by 4, it is much harder to do with a D6 than with a card!

All in all it looks like an interesting, quick game, but like Jim said, you would probably be bored with a steady diet of it. It feels very similar to Songs of Blades and Heroes, but with a guaranteed activation system, which is no fun. I'll probably get my own figures for this, but play SBH.

By the way, I am hoping to put on a test game of Flying Lead using my Heroscape hexes soon. FL is basically the SBH rules for modern period. I have been collecting quite a few 28mm WW II and I am anxious to try a bigger game. Maybe I will put on such a game for a convention once I work out an interesting scenario.

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Huachuca City, Arizona, United States
I am 50 yrs old now. I bought a house in Huachuca City, AZ (although I have a townhouse in Houston, TX and a small home in Tucson, AZ) working on a contract for "the next two years" that is going on five years now. To while away the hours I like to wargame -- with wooden, lead, and sometimes paper miniatures -- usually solo. Although I am a 'rules junkie', I almost always use rules of my own (I like to build upon others' ideas, but it seems like there is always something "missing" or "wrong").