Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Warcon 2013

This year's Warcon (held in Tampere, Finland) was a treat as always. I managed to keep playing through the weekend with only minimal downtime and tried quite a few new wargames.

Sword of Rome

Sword of Rome is GMT's card driven strategy boardgame set in the Camillan period of Rome (I think). It puts the Romans, Gauls, Phoenicians, Samnites, Syracusans and Carthaginians on the board to solve their disputes with some dice rolling and maneouvering.

We played a four player game. I got the Gauls.

After some successful campaigning (looting the countryside that is) the Gauls threaten Rome herself. Brennus besieges Rome but is unable to make her surrender.
I neglect to protect my rear and the transalpine Gauls invade. The support of my home cities crumble and disaster is near.
With sage advice from an experienced player, I stab the Phoenicians in the back, claiming enough victories to resume control of my home territories.

In the end, the Phoenicians were totally wiped out and Rome was barely hanging on. After learning a valuable lesson on protecting my rear, I went on to grab a tiebreaker victory from the Greeks.

 Commands & Colors: Napoleonics

A quick filler game of C&C:N to finish friday. I don't remember the scenario but my brits and portuguese troops were soundly beaten.

Labyrinth: The War on Terror 2001 - ?

GMT's Successor to Twilight Struggle, Labyrinth is a card driven game where the United States attempts to stem the rising Islamist extremism in the Middle East and Europe.
I was a first timer playing versus someone who had played the game some times before, so I picked US because I thought it would be easier to play for the first time.

My opponent's opening play was to dump all terrorist cells in Afghanistan on the first round. He explained to me that the move was pretty much the best one could do in the game at this point. I responded by putting some boots on the ground and by overthrowing the Islamist regime.
My opponent then spread his cells to the neighboring Pakistan managing to overthrown the local government. I retaliated again by sending troops, but unfortunately not before the Islamists had helped themselves to the Pakistani nuclear arsenal!
The results were predictable. With a few moves I was unable to stop he moved his terrorist cells through Europe to the United States and blew up a nuke there. Game Over.
The game felt somewhat confusing and after the brief game I still don't have an idea on how to play or stop the terrorist infiltrators. I think I'll need a game or two more to wrap my head around the game.


Maria is Histogame's game set in the Austrian War of Succession in the 1700's. It is the successor of Friedrich and I have played it a few times now. It is one of the better three player wargames out there but not exactly balanced. Prussia wins often, France sometimes and Austria rarely. I was teaching the game to two new players so I naturally picked Austria.

After a traditional slugfest between Austria and France, the Austrians are left with little to pit against Frederick the Great.
The surprise comes from the French front, however as the Pragmatic army defeats the French and bring the game to a conclusion before the Prussians get a chance. This I've never seen before (although both Prussia and the Pragmatics are played by the same player)

Black Powder ACW

My first game of Black Powder and for me the main event of Warcon. We played the battle for the Wheatfield (Gettysburg) on a regimental level and fun was had by all. I'll write up a dedicated post on the game itself as it deserves it's own entry.

Epic Armageddon

My return to the grim darkness of the 41st millenium is in 6mm. A fellow gamer who has participated in some of my ACW games was happy to show me the ropes.

The Dark Angels and the Tyranids fight over a city on a not so grim and dark green planet.
The Marines capture a block while the Tyranids quicly capture most of the city.
*Scuttle Scuttle*
The buildings provide a good firebase

The tyranids charge the marine positions and reach melee range but are ultimately driven back.

The Marines take the city.

My opponent had put a bit more effort in his models than I had.

The game felt good and I decided then and there to expand my marines to a proper tournament sized army. I'm sure my opponent pulled some of his punches to spare the newbie so the next game won't be quite as easy.

Pax Baltica

I was interested to try this out. Another GMT game, Pax Baltica is a block wargame where two players play through the twilight era of Sweden as a great world power.

On the first turn the Swedes invade Estonia. This proves to be a mistake as the Russians are in range to counterattack and drinve them back into the sea.

Swedish armies are quick to raise but it takes time to get them across the Baltic sea. All invasion attempts are blocked.

The Russians can now spare some troops and invade my real life hometown in Finland.

The Swedish wise up and attempt a new invasion into the German territories, but Saxony has already gained too much strength and are more than a match for the Swedes.

The final battle ends with the Swedish king left alone on the field with one point as the attackers are forced to retreat. We call it a game at this point.

Either my opponent should have made a different opening play, we played the rules wrong or the rules are broken because it was next to impossible for the Swedes to gain a beachhead in the Baltics or in Germany. It's a fresh scenario though, not many GNW games around.

Commands & Colors: Ancients

I had just enough time left on Sunday to play a game of C&C:A. We played the battle of Marathon from the Greek expansion.

Opening setup. I got to play the Greeks.

With two consecutive "Order line" commands, I made simultaneous contact to the Persian line with all my troops.

The Persians line falters.

I add insult to injury with a card that allows me to hit with every unit adjacent to the enemy.

The Persian made a good comeback and only lost 6-5.

So, there it was, another thoroughly enjoyable con with lots of games to play. I'll end with some snaps from games I did not participate in.

Space Empires 4X
Red Winter
Europe Engulfed
Veli Veljeä Vastaan, a prototype wargame of the Finnish Civil War.
Europe Engulfed, some 11 hours later.
Sword of Rome was really popular this year.
Nuklear Winter something something.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting selection of games. Looks fun. I like that there were mini and board games there.
    Thanks for sharing the pics.