February 25, 2013

First test miniature for Classical Indians.

So here is the first few pics of one of my elephant bases for my new Classical Indian force.  The Army is already almost half done. (I'm certainly getting sick of painting archers!!!

As you can see the model isn't based and there are still a few extra levels of detail i want to add to the miniature before i consider it finished but i think its a good approximation of the picture from one of my earlier posts.

Keen to here what you think. Also I'm really struggling to work out a fitting basing scheme for this army so if anyone has any ideas let me know.

February 21, 2013

Small games of Field of Glory (or how to get people playing FOG)

Today I wanted to touch on the subject of getting people to join in and play FOG. As I’ve stated before (at least I think I have) FOG is a wonderfully simple game hidden under a rather heavy looking set of rules. Fog 2.0 has cleaned things up a little but the game itself still looks complicated to the new player.
On top of this when you set up two 800 point armies (Which I always stop and think how awesome they look) your new player is faced with looking at these large armies and working out just how much he will have to buy and paint to get into the game. For many players a full 800 point FOG army is a monster
undertaking, easily 150 miniatures or more. Whether you collect and play in 28mm or 15mm the cost is not inconsiderable (certainly easier on the wallet for 15mm, but 28mm plastics are making the more common ancient armies far easier to do in 28mm).

Just recently (well over the last 6 months) I’ve been working on a way to make the game of FOG easier to get into and play for a beginner with the aim being that the new player will eventually build their army up to a fully fledged 800 point force. This is hardly a new concept – this was always the goal for us back in the day when I worked in Games Workshop Retail stores. The concept is play with smaller forces and less terrain on a smaller table – in essence you are getting a cut down version of the main game.

The format I’ve been using which has proved to be very successful so far is:

- 400 point forces.
- Only one general and it must be a troop commander rather than an inspired commander or force commander.
- Army minimums still apply. So you must observe minimum BG size and compulsory units. (So far I haven’t found a single army that doesn’t fit within 400 points. If you find one let me know.
- Battles are played on a 4 foot x 3 foot playing area.
- Terrain is limited to compulsory choices and 1-2 pieces of terrain per player with the standard terrain placement rules.

Under this format a standard army is 5-8 battle groups on average and the playing time of a game is usually under 2 hours (often far less than this). This makes this format fast and fun to play and perfect for evening gaming after work when you can’t afford to stay up into the early hours of the morning because of work the next day. The painting side of these smaller forces is far easier as well as the battle groups are often only 4 bases or 6 bases each in size (although we did have one game where the Gaul player took 2 battle groups of 12 Gaul’s as the solid centre of his force!).

Thanks to this format I’ve slowly converted all my regular gaming buddies into playing FOG and we are slowly working our way towards all having 800 points with some talk of second armies in the not too distant future.

Id love to here what others are doing to get their friends into Fields of Glory.

February 18, 2013

Battlecry 2013 FOG tournament results.

Well that was a great weekend! (Apart from losing my Internet connection for two days which made Blogging during the event impossible.

The thing I've always liked about tournaments is the fact that you get to play against new armies and hopefully a different group of guys than you regularly play against. In the FOG tournament we had 3 players from outside of Auckland and another player from Auckland that we hadn't met before. (He’s now been invited to join the South Auckland club and my regular gaming group as well so hopefully he will want to hang out with me, Rob and the other lads.)

I was still feeling a bit crook over the weekend from my stomach bug earlier in the week but i didn't let that ruin the weekend for me in any way. 

Arthur and Kevin had the initial games all set up so none of us local lads had to play each other in the first round which was great. My first opponent was Scott – who i believe was from Hamilton.  He had the Western Han Chinese army.  Id never played against a Chinese army so it was an interesting education in run away crossbow cavalry and surprisingly tough heavy weapon – it was a slightly frustrating game for me as all i could do for the most part was chase his horse back towards the edge of the table. Scott was a great opponent though and deserved the win. I was happy that i managed to get 6 points out of the game cause for a while there it was looking like a down-trousers moment!

- My line up after turn one with Scott just beginning to advance his on formidable line.

- Another shot from my side of the board. Here you can see some of my new Enclosed fields and a pair of open fields.

- My javelin men getting ready to take the high ground.

- A few turns later those same javelin men giving up the hill to superior opposition.

- Almost all my army has forced it’s way into Scott's Deployment zone.

The second game of day one was against Arthur and his Anglo Normans.  I have played Arthur many times as he is a member of the South Auckland club.  Two weeks ago our armies had played against each other and he had totally mauled me and ill be honest i was looking for revenge. Arthur is a very skilled FOG player and I've very rarely beaten him in our past games so to be honest i wasn't rating my chances.    However it seamed that the dice gods were with me and in one turn i managed to break 5 of his Battle groups which gave me the game. Needless to say i was pleased but felt bad for Arthur as its always stink when the dice are really against you. Still a win is a win Smile

- some of my Battle groups after a series of charges.

- 2 of my Chariot units about to go up against 3 Battle groups of Knights!

- This pic shows just how empty the table was of terrain (Not good for Arthurs Defensive Spear.

- Several turns later my wall of pointy sticks gets close to its prey (Chariots and Knights fight it out.

- A turn later my line hits all those defensive spear. the dice are my # of hits. (Note Arthur didn't get a single hit back on me) All 4 of his engaged battle groups drop a grade. The melee phase was no kinder too him.

- Beginning of the final turn of the game, 3 Battle groups running here and two on the far side that you can see in the pic and i was ready to charge him in the flank.  It really was the crowning moment of the whole weekend for me.

Day two started out with me playing against Stephen who i believe is down in Christchurch.  He was running a Khmer army (Ancient Cambodians) with some Thai allies.  All i can say about Stephens force (apart from how nice it looked on the table) was soooooooooooooo many Elephants! 14 in total!!!!!  Elephants are mincing machines against chariots but for some reason (ill blame it on still feeling sick) i stupidly and purposely set up my chariots against his Elephants.  Needless to say about 2 minutes into the game i realised what id done and knew short of miracle dice  i was going to lose the game very badly.  My dice weren't wonderful and just under two hours into the game my turn was about to start and i looked up at Stephen and asked him if he wanted to continue playing for the next two hours while i tried to get at least 2 points or would he be happy to take the out and out win as i was happy to score no points for this round and watch the other lads games.  As Stephen was from out of town i would have kept playing for the rest of the game if he has wanted to but Stephen being the gentleman he was took the win and let me off the hook from playing what would have been a very painful and long 2 hours where i was very likely not to score any points.

- My wall of Offensive spear and chariots.

- A couple of pics of some of Stephens beautifully painted Khmer (Top) and Thai’s (bottom).

I'm note sure why but i don't seam to have any other pics from this game – they would have shown pieces of chariots being jumped on by hoards of wild Elephants!!!!!!

In this 2 hour break i got to walk around the hall and watch some games of x-wing, played a couple of demo games of Relics (more of this later), see Garth and Richards Infinity demos that they were running and peruse the Bring and buy areas and the Stalls that were filled with board games, infinity miniatures , cards and all sorts of collectables.  Its during this time that my camera ran out of charge so unfortunately i have no photos of all the cool goings on’s. (Hopefully rob was able to take a pile of pics). 

My 4th and final game of the weekend was against Christopher with an army I'm extremely fond of (and used to using)– Later Carthaginians.  It is a true shame my camera had died as Christopher's army was absolutely wonderful! All his figures were from Corvus Belli which have a very small range of 15mm figs but they are truly special and worth every penny.  Next time i see Christopher ill get some photos of his army for you all to look at.

Christopher had only just started playing FOG and had only one game under his belt before the tournament which meant i was the 5th person he had ever played against. He was a great player and put up a hell of a fight and the game came close to timing out. The game was extremely bloody – i lost 9 points (4 Battle groups broken and one fragmented) out of my 13 but managed to do 16 points to Christopher's force which had a break point of 15! I’m looking forward to playing more games against Christopher. I definitely see a rematch in the works.

When Kevin e-mails out the final results ill post them up for anyone who wants to see how the breakdown went.

All in all the tournament was excellent and the event as a whole was very good. I'm looking forward to next year as its been decided (through a vote of the players at the end of the tournament) to go to a smaller sized format and more games. 600 points on 5x3 tables. I will always build my armies to 800 points but I’m happy the comp is changing. 4 large games is fun but 6 games will be more interesting i think.

February 15, 2013

Night before the tournament.

Well that week went by pretty fast (Didn't help i was crook as for a couple of days and didn't manage to go to work or do any terrain modelling.

Still I finished a couple of enclosed fields and a coastline as well as a vineyard so my terrain is looking a lot better. (ill take some pics next week once the tournament is over.  All i have let to do is pack everything away into the car and I'm ready for my 8am start.

I’m charging up my batteries for my camera so hopefully id do some in between games pic taking and do a bit of a write up of the tournament and the event as a whole.

wish me luck (I suspect I'm going to need it) Smile

February 08, 2013

7 Days and Counting!

Battlecry 2013 is on in 7 days. For those not in the know (and if your not in NZ why would you) is the only competition in the top of the north Island that runs a FOG tournament. I generally find traveling down the line to other comps either too expensive or too hard to organise around work and family. In past years work has also got in the way of me being able to participate at Battlecry but not this year!

Finally the army which i built and painted over a year and a half ago will get to see the light of day on a tournament table. Finally the Kyreanian Greeks will test their Heavy Chariots and Phalanx’s against different types of armies than what they are used to playing.

Battlecry 2013

The event for FOG is small (only 8 players) but is growing and with my help getting some new lads into the game. I'm hoping next year for the comp to be at least 12 players or more which is a good number for a to get.

One of the issues FOG has is that it is a slower game to play. A full 800 point game really needs 3 odd hours to knock out and at least 15-20 minutes for rolling for terrain and set up. (these are important parts of the game and there is a level of strategy involved).  This more than anything else puts people off FOG. However if you give it the time it deserves it is a wonderful game.  It is however not great for a tournament as the number of rounds you can play in a day is limited.  I've been pushing for the tournament to be only 600 points for the last couple of years and i think for BC 2014 Kevin (the FOG event organiser at the South Auckland club) may try it out.  At 600 points you can fit in an extra game in each day and as the points are lower Armies as smaller meaning less painting which makes it easier for newer players to give it a go.  As an owner of 5 800pt forces i can say that much as i love painting them they are a pile of work!.

On Thursday we were sent out the list of who would be playing who in the first round and what armies were in the comp. as you can see I'm up against a Western Han Chinese force. (Should be interesting!!)


I see a few Elephant armies in there – and why not at 3 attack dice on impact they sure do hit harder these days.

For anyone who cares here is my list for the weekend:


now all i have to do is finish up all of my new terrain before next Saturday and I'm set.

February 02, 2013

2013 and Field of Glory

Well the post title says it all. 2013 is going to be what I will call the year of Field of Glory gaming.

Last Month Slithering released Field of Glory 2.0 in a proper physical book format.  Months earlier (Mid 2012 they had originally announced that the new version would be digital only (and worse yet only on Apple and PC, not Android). Public outcry followed and so they finally realized that they were being silly trying to push a digital only format and at the end of December released a Print on Demand copy of the rules.  My copy of these rules arrived a couple of weeks ago in the post and since then I’ve pumped out 7 games of various sizes and am finally getting the hang of the changes – all of which I’ve decided are the best (Even though 2 of my armies suffered a little due to the changes in the POA rules for better armour rules.

Just lately I’ve been consolidating my model collections and have been selling of some Flames of war armies as well as some War machine and Hordes and other odd bits and pieces.  This isn’t because I don’t like the games (certainly not the case for Flames of war) but I do find myself with far too many models that I just don’t get to use. Rather than having them take up space in figure cases I’ve decided that if I’m not playing at least one game with it every few months it needs to find a new home where it will get used as was intended.  This also clears the way for new armies and projects that I’ve wanted to get and start for several years now.   The projects I’m referring to will be revealed in future posts but the first one is a new FOG army that I’ve had in a box for a whole year now - “Classical Indians”.

- this picture is what inspired my army.

The Classical Indian army is one I’ve always liked the look of and wanted to paint up. I like Elephants and the list allows for lots of them (12 in total).  When my friend Jason went out and brought a Macedonian army I decided it was time to get the Indians as a nice themed army to counter his wall of spiky death.   I was very keen, I placed my order with old glory received it – thought my oh my that’s a lot of bowmen!!! And then got very, very busy with work and as a project it just kept slipping back further and further down the list of things to start working on. (This is sadly something that happens far too often – hence the clean out.)  
Now fast forward to 2 weeks ago on the day of arrival of my copy of FOG 2.0.  Having a read through I discovered two things MF bow got better with their second rank of shooting in Impact and Elephants now have 3 dice each at impact instead of 2.  “Wow” I thought to myself Elephant/Bow armies just got a lot better.  Then I remembered that I had just such army sitting in a box. With work projects finally out of the way I can start working on the force.  Last week I managed to clean up and assemble 12 Elephants and crew and 4 battle groups of bowmen. (it’s obviously much bigger than this but it’s a good amount to start working on.) This week I’ve managed to get paint onto models and have the Elephants in a half finished state and am just starting on the skin for the bowmen. Pictures to follow once I get my camera set up.

Wow no posting for two months and then suddenly a whole page.!!!