Soviet Last Stand – 600pts – Surrounded – Soviet v Germany

My brother came round today for a game of Bolt Action, which I realised the other week I hadn’t ever shown him. I pointed some Operation Barbarossa lists, set up the field, and we cranked some Sabaton as the battle began.

Forces

Soviet (all inexperienced)

1st Lieutenant with one staff

Rifle squad with AT grenades

Three LMG squads with 12 men and LMG

Maxim MMG

82mm medium mortar

AT rifle team

45mm 1937obr AT gun

T-26B

German (regular, expect where marked)

2nd Lieutenant with one staff (veteran)

Two Heer squads (one eight man, one seven man, NCO with SMG in both)

Heer pioneer squad (six men, flamethrower, veteran)

Sdkfz 221/1 “Hanomag” half track

Panzer III J

Table and Mission

I rolled Surrounded for the mission. I took the Soviets and would be the defender. Half my force needed to be deployed within 12” of the centre of the table, half Lee’s force would be the first wave with the other half in reserve.

Order of Battle

I chose to deploy my mortar on the hill, AT gun at the base of the hill, an LMG squad forward of centre behind the fence, Maxim in the most central house, and my Lieutenant behind the same house.

The preparatory bombardment came down, with a pin for the LMG squad, two apiece for the Lieutenant and mortar, but a direct hit with one casualty to go with the two pins on the AT gun. The Maxim escaped harm. Then the battle commenced.

06 - Soviet setup

Germany pulled the first dice and Lee brought on the Panzer III. It took a shot at the AT gun with its main gun, hitting, and blowing apart the rest of the crew. First blood on the very first order dice. I rallied my Lieutenant and cleared his pins, but my LMG squad decided they wanted to be down. My Maxim repositioned to the rear centre building.

One of the Heer squads entered the field in the centre, and shot at but missed my LMG squad. My mortar returned fire, passing its order test, scoring that lucky six to hit, blowing apart four Heer troops and adding a couple of additional pins. They barely passed their morale check, but were very much weakened. The final unit to enter the field was the other Heer, which skirted the hill on the German left.

Turn two and the Soviet were up first. My mortar once again passed its order test, clearing the last pin, dropped another shell on the Heer in the centre, blowing apart three of the remaining four. The NCO as all that was left, but didn’t fancy his chances and quit the field. It was good I got that action in with my mortar though, because the Panzer III followed up its first turn to fire on the mortar and take it out easily.

17 - T2 Panzer III

The rest of the turn involved units moving on to the field, for the Soviets at least. Both the halftrack and the German command team botched their order tests and failed to materialise. Unfortunately, so did my AT rifle. I kept my rifle squad down, but brought one LMG squad on the far left, and the other moved into the forested hill. Meanwhile my T-26B showed up on the left to cover that flank, moving up behind the church. Finally, the second Heer squad moved up and took some shots at my LMG squad on the far right, killing a man.

Turn three and the Soviets were up first. My LMG squad on the right advanced and opened up on the Heer opposite, killing three. The Maxim went into ambush, the command team hanging with him. My men in the forest Advanced slowly. The Heer tried to advance but failed their order test, while the halftrack showed up on the German far left and put some shots into the LMG squad, killing another man.

In the centre, the Panzer III trundled up and opened up on the LMG squad behind the fence. Half the squad was blown apart, but they hung in there. I probably should have remembered to respond by going down, which is where they stayed when they tried to rally. I brought my rifle squad with AT grenades on the right side, but my AT rifle still refused to respond to orders to deploy. Finally, the German command came on behind the Panzer while my T-26B trundled up on the left.

Turn four and I again scored the first dice. I decided to take a risk and try take out the Panzer III. It did not pay off. Not only did I miss my shot, the Panzer III knocked my T-26B out, while mowing down more Soviet infantry with its hull MG.

24 - T4 T26B

I ran my rifle squad up the road, heading towards the Panzer III. Meanwhile, my LMG squad on the right finished off the Heer, while the halftrack trundled up, spraying them with machine gun fire. The pioneers then jumped out and added rifle fire to the mix. Despite scoring hits with both units, Lee failed to score any kills.

22 - T4 Soviet right

The LMG squad on the hill advanced again to reach the centre of the forest and tried shooting the pioneers, but failed. My Maxim remained in ambush, which was probably a bad idea, with my commander hanging nearby. The German command moved up, using the Panzer for cover.

23 - T4 Panzer III

Turn five and I thought I was in luck when I pulled the first dice and went to fire on the pioneers with my LMG squad. They had other ideas though and when they scored a FUBAR on their order test, they proceeded to open fire on the rifle squad right next to them (which was just barely within 12” of the pioneer squad). Luckily with their two pins along with light cover and being inexperienced they couldn’t hit the backside of a barn. Their failure was pretty bad though. It went from bad to worse when the pioneers went next, moved up, and saw off the rifle squad with a torrent of flame, mixed with rifle fire, which the squad very much did not want to stick around for.

29 - T5 Soviet right

Worse then went to even worse when the Panzer moved up, fired on the squad on the hill, and stacked on the pins. This forced them to rally (which they did). The German command moved up and took out another Soviet infantryman in the centre, leaving two. In response they charged the command squad, like true heroes. Unfortunately heroes they were not to be, rolling a one and a three for damage. They were promptly bayonetted by the veteran officer and his staff.

With the Maxim and Soviet command again being Very Inactive, the AT rifle finally showed up. I ran it into position for a side armour shot on the Panzer III and crossed my fingers for the first dice.

27 - T5 AT Rifle finally arrives

Nope. Turn six and Germany, sensing victory was near, seized the initiative. The Panzer turned to face the house the Maxim was in, and put an HE shell through the window, followed by a hail of machinegun fire, after which only corpses remained inside. With the front armour of the Panzer now showing, the AT rifle was neutered. I decided to go for a shot on the German command, but missed it. They tried likewise on the AT rifle, but also missed.

33 - T6 Middle.jpg

Meanwhile the pioneers and halftrack opened up on the LMG squad on the far right. But despite the hail of bullets and torrent of flame, five men still stood, and were keen to hang in there. The squad on the hill tried for some shots, but failed. Before finally my Very Pinned LMG squad decided it best to stay down than give assaulting the pioneers ago.

Although we did roll a turn seven, there was no way the Soviets could even bring the battle to an inconclusive result, and so operations ceased. A victory for Germany!

Aftermath

We had a lot of fun. I really like that the battle see-sawed, with the early game very much looking quite positive for the Soviets. The Panzer III was MVP though, and really cleaned up. I made some poor choices with my Maxim and T-26B, but the fourth turn order dice and FUBARed order test really hurt me too.

Lee really enjoyed the game, and loved the simplicity of the core elements of the system. No doubt we will play again in the future!

British Paras v Soviet Guards – 750pts – Key Positions

I finally was able to organise a game of Bolt Action last Wednesday, my first in over 12 months and my first in 2nd Edition. This write up has also been slightly delayed due to a lack of internet.

Forces

Soviet (Me) – All regular except the free rifle squad

1st Lieutenant and one staff

Guards squad, eight men with LMG

Guards squad, seven men with LMB

Guards squad, eight men all with SMGs

Rifle squad (free)

Zis-3 Divisional Gun

ISU-152

 

British (Andrew) – All veteran

1st Lieutenant and one staff (SMGs)

Para squad, ten men with LMG and some SMGs

Para squad, ten men with LMG and some SMGs

Light mortar team

Medium mortar team

6pdr AT gun

Tetrarch light tank (The Little Tank that Could)

Battlefield and Mission

The mission rolled was Key Positions. A total of seven objectives were rolled, with me placing the first one.

They were placed as follows: both ridges, the church, the barn, the wooded hill, the centre most house, and on the painted road leading off the short table edge (so the one near the wooded hill and village).

05 - Down the road.jpg

Order of Battle

I won the roll off to choose a side, and took the one with the wheat fields and wooded hill on the basis that four objectives were closer to that side (although further away from the table edge than the three on the other side). The first turn involved moving all out forces on. It was a stack of red dice to begin with, but I ended with the last dice which was Very Good.

I ran the eight man Guards squad on the right flank; seven man towards the barn; rifle squad straight up the middle and into the wheat field; SMG Guards squad up in between the seven man Guards squad and the rifle squad; HQ behind the rifle squad; and Zis3 behind the SMG squad.

In response, Andrew moved the 6pdr on his right/my left flank (in the village, with sights down the road); Tetrarch behind the house near the road heading off the long side, HQ behind the centre most house, medium mortar in the centre, first para squad behind the trees near the ridge on his side, second paras just to his right of the ridge, and light mortar on the left.

The ISU-152 was the last unit to trundle onto the field, rolling on via the road and lining up a shot on the second para squad. I rolled a six to hit, hitting four but only killing three, and then rolled six pins! Glory to the ISU-152!

Turn two and the paras got the jump. The second para squad went first, passing their order test (being stubborn, the pins weren’t an issue for them taking morale tests) and running out of sight of the ISU-152 behind the ridge. The first para squad then went down, as the medium mortar attempted to range in on my rifle squad, but failed. I ran my seven man Guards squad into the barn before the light mortar moved up but still drew range just short of my Guards on my right. Said guards were up next and ran into the church.

In the centre, I ran my rifle squad and SMG Guards straight forward, the Zis3 trundling up behind them. The 6pdr took a shot at the barn, but missed (we didn’t realise this shot shouldn’t have incurred hard cover negatives, can’t remember what the roll was, so it may have still missed – it wasn’t high). The British HQ moved into the centre house, but were just out of range on the rifle squad. The Tetrarch, however, did not have such issues and moved up and put heat on the rifle squad, killing two. They rolled for Green and I rolled a one! This resulting in an extra three pins!

10 - Soviets advance in fields

My HQ moved up through the field they were in before the ISU-152 was again the last to make a move, trundling up and setting its sights on the medium mortar. And I rolled a six to hit again. I was only able to kill two of the mortar crew, but I again rolled six pins!

Turn three and the paras again got the jump. The medium mortar tried once more to range in on the rifle squad, but failed, while the Tetrarch shifted up and sprayed the SMG squad with MMG fire, scoring only one hit and failing to kill! The British HQ went into ambush, anticipating a move from the SMG Guards. Next I opened fire from the church on the light mortar squad, taking it out. First blood to the Soviets! I then advanced my Guards squad out the barn and shot at the 6pdr, killing one man. The first para squad ran to Andrew’s left flank, fleeing the terror of the ISU-152, before I successfully rallied the rifle squad! A total of three pins were removed (one for the successful order test, and two from the rally).

My SMG Guards went in on the British HQ, who opened fire with their SMGs. They scored three hits and no kills! Andrew’s dice were sorely against him. I shot back with my SMGs, killing the Lieutenant’s staffer. Next up was the Zis3 and on examination, the Tetrarch had mot moved quite enough to get out of its arc and in short order it was reduced to the Little Tank that Couldn’t when my shot hit, and very thoroughly blew it up.

16 - Little Tank that Couldn't

17 - Zis3 Sights

At some point the 6pdr fired on the Guards who’d left the barn, hitting, killing two, and scoring an additional two pins.

19 - 6pdr

The last two dice and the second para squad was first to move. They shifted up and sprayed the church will bullets, but with all their pins (now down to four), they couldn’t land a hit. And finally, the ISU-152. It shifted up, pivoted to face the second para squad. Once again, I hit with a six. Five paras were caught in the blast but three ones meant I only killed two. Then came the pin roll. Six. The second para squad were set to 10 pins, which broke them and the squad fled.

At this point that meant the ISU-152 had rolled a six to hit each time it fired, had only killed 7/12 infantry struck, but inflicted maximum pins each time. The British paras were suitably terrified.

Turn four and things were Not Good for the British. I scored the first dice this time and moved by SMG Guards right up to the centre house and poured on the lead on the British lieutenant, but failed to kill him. I then move my Guards near the barn. They passed their order test and shifted closer to the objective, shooting at the 6pdr ineffectually along the way. The medium mortar again tried to range the rifle squad (who I kept down), but failed.

The British lieutenant was again unable to kill a Guard, while the 6pdr continued to actually do things, blowing apart another two Guards on the left and again adding two extra pins. I put my Guards in the church on ambush, and my HQ down, but kept pulling red dice. The Zis3 fired over the down rifle squad at the centre house, but missed (again, a mistake). The ISU-152 was next, shifted up, fired at the repositioned para squad. Another six to hit, half the squad blown apart, and another six pins. Finally the remaining para squad ran back towards the centre.

23 - ISU 152

Turn five and the game was all but over. I tried to move the Guards on my left, but they decided staying down was a better idea. The ISU-152 trundled up, fired at the mortar, five to hit, and finally ended its existence. The rifle squad ran towards the barn, giving the Zis3 at the centre house, hitting, and finally killing the British lieutenant.

The battle being over, Andrew sent the paras into a suicide charge on the SMG squad. Four of them were shot before they made it in, before the last failed to kill a man and was beaten down. Finally the 6pdr took a long shot on the exposed ISU-152 and missed. I spent the rest of my dice shifting units around to secure objectives.

At the start of turn six, we declared the battle over. A very decisive victory to the Soviets.

Aftermath

Andrew rued not putting the Tetrarch in reserve. He needed it to move on after knowing where the ISU-152 was to knock it out. He also noted he should have run more, and smaller infantry squads (for example, he could have run two seven man squads and one six man para squad). The dice were very much in my favour though. The ISU-152 rolled 6, 6, 6, 6, 5 on its rolls to hit, killing 12/17 targets, and applying 24 pins (noting that it didn’t need to roll for pins when it killed the medium mortar).

This being my first game of 2nd Edition (I don’t even own the book yet), and Andrew also being fairly new, we certainly made some mistakes (particularly, as noted, firing HE at buildings), but we had a lot of fun, and a lot of laughs. He’s away soon, but when he’s back, expect to see more Bolt Action after-action reports, and some SAGA to boot!

 

Guild Ball – Fish (Shark) v Brewers (Tapper)

This is the second game my brother and I played last weekend. We switched teams so I could show him how to Fish.

Line-Up

Me: Greyscales, Siren, Shark (cpt), Salt (msct), Jac, Angel

Lee: Vet Spigot, Stave, Scum (msct), Tapper, Hooper, Friday

Match Report

Lee won the roll off and elected to receive. I kicked with Shark, joggin him right up the middle and putting the ball about 3” over the halfway line. Stave went first, sprinted up and snapped the ball, and dropped it behind him at the end of the sprint. He then threw a barrel at Shark, pushing him back and knocking him down.

13 - Kick off

The majority of the rest of the turn was players repositioning. I shifted Jac, Salt, and Greyscales into position to receive a Lured Stave, courtesy of Siren. But when Tapper charged Jac and put him into the ground, I decided instead to use Seduce on Tapper to get him to attack Stave. The reason for this was that Stave blocked a charge on Jac from Hooper. I also only needed a single momentum to get Shark back on his feet. Meanwhile, Scum had snapped the ball, and Friday headed to my right near the tree, Scum tagging along with the ball but just short of getting cover.

With my one momentum from using Tapper to knock down Stave, I got Shark to his feet. He charged Stave, wrapped and was able to use Tidal Surge and a 1” dodge to shift 5” around, passing through Hooper and on to the other side of Tapper. Another attack and dodges put Shark into melee with Scum, but he wasn’t going to be able to tackle, dodge out, and have range on goal. I tackled the ball and then scored a couple of dodges to generate momentum.

14 - T2

I won the roll off for turn two and Shark went first. He attacked Scum five times, generating five momentum, then jogged up to the goal and nailed it. Me 4 v Lee 0. I used Run the Pitch to dodge Shark closer to the goal. Lee put the ball in on the right, next to the tree but out of snap range of Scum and Friday. Stave then used momentum to stand back up, hit Ramming Speed to push back Jac and Salt as he moved, and went to knock down Siren. Except that two attacks totalling 12 dice failed to net him a single 5. I repositioned Greyscales, before Tapper went in on Angel (Jac having stood back up and healed last turn). Angel was knocked down and took a beating, but I repositioned to Jac to cut off a charge from Scum and save her.

Friday sprinted, collecting the ball and passing to Hooper, who took a momentous dodge towards Shark (hoping to avoid a Seduce from Siren. Unfortunately, unbeknownst to Lee, I had the plot card Good Mark, giving Siren’s Seduce +2” range. I was able to shift her around Stave, hit Seduce, use Hooper to pass to Shark, then bonus time a snap shot to score a second goal. Me 8 v Lee 0. The ball came back in with Spigot, who moved on Greyscales, managing to knock him down and generate some momentum. Scum went in on Jac and did some damage, while Angel stood back up and was healed at some point.

Turn three and Lee got first turn. Spigot got some momentum from Greyscales, sprinted and nailed a goal. Me 8 v Lee 4. I kicked the ball back in on the left and used Salt to collect it, and then drop it off near Greyscales (him being knocked down still). I forgot about Friday though, and she was able to nab the ball and kick to space near the tree on the left. I used Shark to generate a bunch of momentum from Hooper and knock him down too. Tapper wailed on Jac, getting up Commanding Aura, before I used Siren to Seduce Tapper into attacking Scum, putting him to half health. A fully loaded Scum then went at Jac, but fell just one point short of getting a Take Out with the first attack, allowing me to Counter Attack, taking the cat down to one health.

Scum finished Jac off and went in on Angel next, but she also Counter Attacked and was able to do the last damage to Take Out Scum. Me 9 v Lee 6. I stood Greyscales up and used him to collect the ball. Hooper had a go at Shark, but the dice continued to be against Lee and he netted nothing.

18 - Final turn

Turn four and I won the roll off. Greyscales went in on Friday, generated three momentum, passed to Shark, who then too a Bonus Timed Snapshot to win the game. Me 13 v Lee 6.

19 - Tap in to win

Aftermath

Lee felt this game went better than the first and preferred the play style of the Brewers. He noted that I played much more aggressively than he did. I was also able to split his players up and avoid a gang of Brewers roaming around, beating me into the ground. He had some very bad luck though: Stave not being able to do anything to Siren, Hooper doing likewise on Shark, and he wasn’t to know I had Good Mark which allowed me to pull off the second goal.

 

Guild Ball – Brewers (Tapper) V Fish (Shark)

The first of two games I played against my brother this weekend.

Line-Up

Me: Vet Spigot, Stave, Scum (msct), Tapper, Hooper, Friday

Lee: Greyscales, Siren, Shark (cpt), Salt (msct), Jac, Angel

Match Report

Lee won the roll off and elected to kick with Salt (I did recommend Shark), who put the ball on the right near the crates.

03 - Kick off

Friday used Shadow Like and a sprint to collect the ball and pass to Tapper. Greyscales moved up before Stave sprinted and threw a barrel behind Greyscales, knocking him forward. Lee moved Jac up, and then I went in on Greyscales with Tapper by first passing to Scum, using a momentous dodge to move up, then charging. I hit Commanding Aura and put some serious hurt in, I also hit my heroic and gave two influence to Hooper.

I think Angel shifted up at this point, before Hooper charged in and finished Greyscales off. Me 2 v Lee 0. Shark activated and went in on Tapper. He was unable to hit Tidal Surge though and just spent his influence generating momentum and dodging around, trying to get closer to Scum. Obviously I wasn’t going to let this happen, and moved Scum into cover of the tree on the left. The final moves were Siren and Spigot moving up the field.

04 - t2

Turn two and Lee won the roll off. Unfortunately the dice were not in his favour after that. He tidal surged past Tapper and Hooper, scored a momentous dodge off Stave, but then couldn’t get a single 5, let alone two, to tackle the ball off Scum. His last attack likewise failed. I got Scum out of trouble with Shadow Like, then made sure to move more than 4” away from Shark. Siren came in and seduced Scum to pass to her, before she passed to Greyscales (who had come back on near her).

05 - Centre scrum

I used Stave to knock Shark down and do some damage before Jac went in on Friday, but failed to do anything. The rest of the turn for the Fish involved repositioning from Greyscales and Angel (who lurked at the back, Lee just didn’t want to play aggressive) and Salt was around somewhere. For me, Shadow Liked Friday out of trouble, charged Shark and got Dirty Knives off and some small damage. Tapper turned on Shark, got Commanding Aura up and did some damage to boot. His activation finished with his heroic, again giving influence to Hooper who came in and finished off Shark with ease. I then played Man Marking for +2 influence next turn. Me 4 v Lee 0

I won the roll off easily and put Tapper into Siren straight away, knocking her down and hitting Commanding Aura, but only doing 5 damage. I used Sic ‘Em to charge Scum into Shark who’d come back on the left side, but only did minor damage. And Spigot moved up and engaged Siren, who he took out but couldn’t quite dodge around enough to get to Shark. Me 6 v Lee 0

Meanwhile Jac engaged Hooper but failed to do anything good, Greyscales and Angel moved up, Salt darted around where ever. Hooper and Stave together knocked Jac down and put the boot in, leaving him on five health.

Turn four and I had two take outs waiting. I started by using Tapper to take out Shark, Me 8 v Lee 0. Angel then activated, sprinted forward, Super Shot, and kicked a goal, after which Lee played Knee Slider to reposition Angel away from Hooper and Stave. Me 8 v Lee 4

11 - Angel scores

I kicked the ball back in on the left and then used Hooper to finish Jac off easily, Me 10 v Lee 4. Greyscales then activated and went in on Stave. He used push dodges to move Stave along with him, before hitting Where’d He Go? on his final attack and dodging across to grab the ball. Stave retaliated by throwing a barrel at him. The knock down ball scatter was favourable to me and sent it straight towards Spigot, only millimetres from snapping to him.

Lee didn’t have much left he could do. A reposition from Salt, but Spigot was then up and grabbed the ball, sprinted up, and used his heroic to make a kick without spending influence to nail the winning goal. Me 14 v Lee 4

12 - Winning goal

Aftermath

This was only Lee’s first real game. He found constantly being knocked down frustrating and felt like he couldn’t deal with my scrum game. I pointed out that he needed to play much more aggressively and attack hard, using his longer melee range and dodges to skirt my players and run amok.

Guild Ball – Brewers (Tapper) v Fish (Shark)

With a full team painted, I decided to play my Brewers last night. Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures.

Line-Up

Me: Friday, Stave, Scum (msct), Tapper (cpt), Hooper, Vet Spigot

Ely: Greyscales, Jac, Shark (cpt), Salt (msct), Siren, Angel

Match Report

Ely won the roll off and elected to kick, using Shark to put the ball on the left in front Friday. I assigned two influence each to Friday and Stave, four Tapper, three Hooper, and one Vet Spigot. This allocation was my first mistake.

Friday grabbed the ball and passed back to Scum, but missed the kick. Scum was able to nab the ball in a scatter which Ely forced me to reroll with Match Fixing. Shark then activated and did Shark things. He charged Scum, tackled the ball, used Guy and Strings on Stave and pushed him around, bounced off Tapper, shot and scored, then momentous dodged near Friday. Me 0 v Ely 4. I activated Stave, played Good Mark, and used his two influence to throw a barrel next to Shark, pushing him passed Friday and knocking him down. Greyscales shifted up, then so did Scum who used Shadow Like then jogged around Shark, keeping in melee range, to block an escape back to Ely’s side of the pitch.

Siren Lured Tapper, but he still had plenty of range to charge Shark, hitting Commanding Aura and Marked Target (so Hooper would have charge range on Shark), before dishing out some pain (10 damage in two attacks I think). Jac shifted up and Ely cleared conditions on Shark to stand him back up. Hooper charged in and Ely used Defensive Stance and Counter Attack. Hooper was able to put him back on the ground, but failed to do the damage to take him out (Shark was left with 3hp). Salt moved up before Vet Spigot (who had the ball from when I kicked it back in) sprinted up to the fast ground on the right. I went a little too far though and Angel was able to charge me and get a momentous push dodge.

Although I was up on momentum, the dice were against me and Ely won the roll off. I went with four Vet Spigot, two Friday, three Tapper, and two Scum. This allocation was also a mistake. Shark forfeited his movement and got up. Hit his legendary and promptly dodged his way out of the scrum with a succession of attacks. In hindsight, I probably should have taken the chance with a counter attack from Hooper on the first attack to try knock Shark back down. Even then though, Ely would have generated one momentum from that attack and been able to stand right back up. After dodging clear of everything, Shark healed 4 (so he was now on 7). For my first activation, I went with Friday and hit Dirty Knives on Shark. This choice was also a mistake because Siren Seduced the ball of Vet Spigot and then passed to Salt. Tapper put up Commanding Aura, then hit his heroic to give two influence to Scum (this was an error, Scum has a max of 3). Angel then ran up into a snapshot position, before Scum charged Shark who put up Defensive Stance and Counter Attacked. I was only able to do two damage after a terrible roll, and then Shark’s counter attacked dodged him away. The only other interesting thing to occur this turn was Vet Spigot charging Angel, who also hit Defensive Stance and Counter Attack, failing to do anything, but Angel getting a dodge.

I lost the roll off again, and the turn began with Greyscales grabbing the ball (dropped by Salt) and moving up into tap in range. He hit Stave for some momentum before hitting the goal easily. Me 0 v Ely 8. I took a risk with the kick back in and ended up landing it with Angel. This forced me to activate Vet Spigot first, who took two attacks to tackle the ball back off Angel and couldn’t do anything else. Ely repositioned Jac to engage tapper and Hooper, followed by a Scum charge on Shark. A charge that fell one damage short of taking him out, followed by a second attack that scored nothing. That summed up the game pretty well. Shark went in and generated some momentum from Friday and Tapper. Tapper shifted across and laid the smack down on Jac, knocking him down, getting up Commanding Aura, and doing a total of 10 damage (and that was after Tough Hide). But the end of the game was nigh. Siren seduced Vet Spigot who passed to Angel, who then made the Snap Shot to end the game. Me 0 v Ely 12.

Aftermath

Well I learnt a lot about Brewers. The low movement and lack of abilities to repositions hurts big time. But it didn’t help I made endless mistakes. I realised afterwards that my allocation in first turn should have shifted two from Hooper and added one to Friday and Stave. This allocation would then allow me to make use of Tapper’s heroic to top Hooper’s influence up. This would have opened up my options, allowing Friday to use Dirty Knives as well as passing, or Stave to sprint and throw a barrel. In fact, even just opening with Stave and using a barrel to push Shark away perhaps would have been a better choice. He would have been knocked down, Ely would have no momentum and a hard time getting any, so a fully loaded Shark would likely be able to do little more than waste his movement standing up, Tidal Surge, and then nothing.

In the second turn I should have ignored Shark after he had activated and used Vet Spigot to score a goal. Even though the ball would have come back in to Ely, it likely would have been the better choice. I also should have only given Tapper two influence. I knew Ely was going to use Caught in a Net with Shark, so there was no point to giving him four influence. An extra two on Friday would have allowed her to use Dirty Knives and move in to attack Shark. Or two on Stave to use a barrel.

As for the last turn, well there wasn’t much avoid the outcome. Though better rolling would have taken out Shark, forcing someone else to generate the momentum for Ely’s snap shot.

The other big mistake throughout the whole game was constantly forgetting Shadow Like on Friday and Scum, and Unpredictable Movement on Scum (which might have been able to prevent Shark’s first turn goal, or even just keep him closer to my goal and easier to smack down.

Fish are a tough match up for Brewers though I think, especially when you’re playing your first game with them against someone who is very familiar with Fish. I’ve at least one, hopefully two, matches lined up against my brother tomorrow (1 July 2017) though, so hopefully I can use what I’ve learnt and play a better game (his inexperience should also put us on a more equal footing).

 

Guild Ball – Fish (Shark) V Union (Blackheart)

No game last week because I was busy, but this week it was a match against Dave playing Union. I was pretty tired, so details are a tad hazy.

Line-up

Me: Greyscales, Siren, Salt (msct), Shark (cpt), Jac, Angel

Dave: Snakeskin, Harry, Blackheart (cpt), Rage, Coin (msct), Avarisse & Greede

Match Report

I won the roll off and elected to kick with Siren. The ball ended up on the right hand side of the pitch, scattering towards the Union line. Usual influence assigned: one a piece Greyscales, Jac, and Angel, six Shark, four Siren.

01 - Lineup.jpg

I’m a bit hazy on the first turn, but ultimately Greyscales, Jac, and Angel all shifted up. Avarisse & Greede, Rage, and Coin all did likewise. The ball was picked up and made its way to Blackheart, never snapping to anyone (Coin missed the pass to Blackheart anyway). Blackheart was able to snap the ball in his activation, pass to Harry and take a Momentous Dodge, Shadowlike, jog into combat with Siren and take her out while she was still fully loaded. Me 0 V Dave 4 and four influence down the drain. I moved Salt into melee with Blackheart before sprinting Shark in, but could only generate some momentum and knock Blackheart down – no pinball to get to Snakeskin through Harry who had the ball.

The highlights of turn two were Rage taken Shark down from full with a single influence and loads of Rage – again, Shark was fully loaded. Me 0 v Dave 4. Blackheart was passed the ball and he shifted up, but the ball was tackled back off him by Greyscales who dropped the ball away from him. Avarisse & Greede came in, and Greede was able to collect the ball and pass to Blackheart. Blackheart then went in on an Icy Sponge’d Siren, taking her out for the second time, and scoring with ease. Me 0 V Dave 10. I kicked in way up to the right and managed to scatter the ball to Angel.

Turn three and it was pretty obvious the game was over, but I wanted to at least get some points on the board so we played it out. Harry tried to take down Greyscales, but poor dice kept him alive. Angel then activated, sprinted, Nimble (why not?), Supershot, and kicked a screamer from tap in range. Me 4 V Dave 10. Finally, Rage went in on Greyscales and finished him off handily. Match over, Me 4 V Dave 12

05 - Endgame.jpg

Aftermath

Mistakes a plenty this game. Siren probably wasn’t the one to kick off with, or I should of kept her out of danger. I feel I got unlucky with Rage, but sending Shark into the centre was probably a dumb idea. Greyscales probably should have held onto the ball at the end of Turn 2, and I should’ve given Siren three influence for Seduce in Turn 2 too. Hopefully next week I’ll be able to put on a better showing and have a closer game.

 

 

Guild Ball – Fish (Shark) V Fish (Corsair)

I ended up playing X-Wing last week, so there was no game, but this week it was back to Guild Ball.

Line Up

Me: Greyscales, Siren, Salt (msct), Shark (cpt), Jac, Angel

Elly: Sakana, Hag, Veteran Siren, Corsair (cpt), Tentacles (msct), Greyscales

Match Report

I won the roll off and elected to kick. Siren was my kick off choice again and put the ball just over the line to the right. Influence went four to Siren, six Shark, and one a piece Angel, Greyscales, and Jac. I forget Elly’s allocations, but Corsair received a full stack.

1 - Kick off.jpg

Elly’s Greyscales went first, moving up and taking the ball, before passing back to Vet Siren and hitting decoy. I moved Siren up, hit seduce on Vet Siren, took a momentous dodge off the successful pass and passed the ball back to Jac. Hag activated, moved up, and hit her legendary to dodge Elly’s team up. Jac then moved up and passed to Angel. Corsair was next and he charged into Siren. I went defensive stance, but it didn’t do much. Siren was knocked down and stomped into the ground with ease in the following attacks. Me 0 v Elly 2. Angel moved up into cover and passed back to Shark. Veteran Siren then moved into the middle of Hag, Corsair, and Tentacles (who she brought along) and put up dread gaze.

I then went to make my Shark play, but no direction looked good. I ended up trying to go through Corsair, who counterattacked and tackled the ball off me. I was able to get it back, but by this point had spent four influence and there was no way to get through to take a shot. I attacked again for more momentum, then passed to Angel who used a momentous dodge to move up. The final moves were pretty dull, with Sakana and my Greyscales moving up but otherwise doing nothing exciting.

I won the roll off for turn two thanks to having more momentum and went first. Siren came back on in front my goal and I assigned six to Shark, four Angel, two Greyscales, and one to Jac. Corsair again received a full stack, plus some to Elly’s Greyscales, Vet Siren, Hag, and Sakana. I activated Angel, charged Tentacles, hit a momentous push dodge that I was able to use to neuter Tentacles counter attack, then hit Super Shot and kicked through Greyscales in melee range, nailing my first goal. Me 4 v Elly 2. I played Knee Slider off it and dodged Angel up and into tap in range of the goal for Snap Shot purposes. Elly played Super Fan to put the ball on Vet Siren, then moved Corsair into Shark, bringing Tentacles along with him. Shark was knocked down and pummelled – ending with on 3 hp left. But 3 hp was more than enough. I used momentum to stand up, jogged around Corsair (keeping Tentacles in melee range). At this point I should have used my legendary, instead I hit Tidal surge into Vet Siren and Greyscales then used my legendary – which fell just short of Sakana (I knew it’d be the case, that’s why I intended to use it before Tidal Surge but forgot). I tackled the ball off Vet Siren, attacked again for a momentous 1” dodge, then shot and scored my second. Me 8 v Elly 2.

2 - end T2

I think the ball came back in and snapped to Hag. Elly then activated his Greyscales and went in on Shark, but poor rolls meant he still couldn’t finish him off. I moved Jac into Corsair and brought Salt along too, and a bad roll netted me one momentum. Elly turned Vet Siren who went in on Shark and finished him off. Me 8 v Elly 4. I moved Greyscales up into Sakana, but failed to do much and had Sakana dodge out of reach in response. I used my last influence on him to Where’d He Go? up further. Hag then got the ball to Sakana, I shifted Siren up a bit, before Sakana jogged up and made an easy shot on goal. Me 8 v Elly 8. I put the ball back in far up on the left – in a great spot for both my Greyscales and Hag (with Shark to run on too) and the game was on.

Elly won the roll off and elected to go first. Sakana received a couple and Corsair the critical amount of four. Meanwhile I jogged Shark on the left side onto fast ground. Influence went six Shark, four Greyscales, one Angel, and three Siren. Hag was up first and dodged around to the ball and then kicked it off the pitch – which I did not see coming. The ball scattered back in and snapped to Corsair. I knew what to do and activated Siren, who successfully Seduced Corsair to pass to Greyscales, who took a momentous dodge to the left. Corsair was next and moved out of melee with Salt and Jac, taking two damage for his trouble. He tried to hit Rough Seas on Greyscales, but failed. He then hit a Drag on Greyscales, but he was out of influence and unable to try take the ball off me. Elly also had no momentum. Greyscales attacked twice for two momentous dodges, hit Where’d He Go?, jogged up into tap in range, and bonus timed to nail just not a goal, but a Screamer. Me 12 v Elly 8.

Aftermath

My two mistakes for the game were not taking a momentous dodge with Shark after receiving the pass in the first turn (which probably turned out for the best because it allowed for a two goal turn two), and forgetting to hit my legendary at Tentacles (which would have ranged Sakana and might have prevented Elly’s goal – it may not have though). Going into the last turn I knew I was in the better position. Elly was always going to need two activations to score, while I had both Shark and Greyscales around the ball and a momentum to start off with. Had Corsair received five or even six influence, things would have been different. Chances are he’d take the ball from Greyscales, then I’d need to spend two attacks just to get it back (in addition to perhaps needing one momentum to stand up or forfeiting my move). It was a close game though, could have gone either way, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

 

 

Something Different – American Civil War Union Infantry

You might recall a mate and I went halves on Perry Miniature’s Battle in a Box American Civil War deal.

Union Infantry

Having done so much Guild Ball stuff recently, I decided I’d finally get around to basing my first unit of Union American Civil War infantry. I painted them up about September or October last year, and they’ve just been sitting on my desk waiting for me to finishing basing them.

01 - Union Inf

So I finally did.

02 - Union inf2

There’s not really much to say about them. The flag was grabbed off the net and doubled up for folding purposes. I printed two pages of 8 a page, so I should be set for Union flags for ever.

03 - Union inf 3

I’ll have to motivate myself to get the rest done at some point. I’m annoyed that I lost one of my cannons though – crew is all there, but the gun (which I know I assembled because it was infuriating) has gone AWOL.

I might see about doing some other random things to break up the deluge of Guild Ball – like finally finishing my ISU-152. I’m hoping for a game of Bolt Action sometime next month too. And maybe SAGA. It’d be awesome if I could get both in. I really need more historical fans round my area…

 

Guild Ball – Fish (Shark) V Hunters (Theron)

Weekly Thursday game, Fish (Shark) v Hunters (Theron)

Line-up

Me: Greyscales, Salt (msct), Siren, Shark (cpt), Jac, Angel

Campbell (of Double Dodge): Jaecar, Theron (cpt), Vet Hearne, Zerola, Chaska, Fahad (msct)

Match Report

Cam won the roll off and elected to receive. I decided to kick off with Siren, the ball landing about 2” over the half way line on the right in front Chaska and Fahad.

1 - Kick off

I went with four influence for Siren, six Shark, and one a piece for the rest of the team. All the Hunters were assigned influence, but I forget the allocations. Fahad went first, moving up to pick up the ball and back to the deployment line to drop it off. I then moved up Jac into cover on the right. Vet Hearne charged Siren, knocking her down and doing 1 damage. I moved Salt up into Vet Hearne, before Zerola had Chaska jogging up the pitch setting up a possible charge on Siren, but also great pinball for Shark. I decided to take the opportunity and charged Vet Hearne, triggered Tidal Surge into Chaska, then a momentous dodge, then another off Zerola to pick up the ball, a third to bounce back for an uncontested shot, then nailed my first goal. Me 4 v Cam 0. I threw down Knee Slider and moved Shark back to block off the Chaska charge route to Siren. Cam used Superfan to put the ball with Jaecar.

Unfortunately this put me in a position where Theron could charge Shark, and he did so. Theron knocked Shark around, applying a snare and pushing him around for Chaska. Greyscales moved next, jogging up and hitting Where’d He Go? to engage Vet Hearne. Jaecar made his move, throwing out a trap near Greyscales and jogging up, leaving the ball on the deployment line. I decided to stand up Siren, forfeiting her movement, and used her to generate three momentum. Chaska then laid into Shark, knocking him down and reducing him to 10hp. My final move was to sprint Angel up to within 4” of Shark.

Cam was up one momentum on me, and subsequently won the roll off and elected to go first. I forget the allocations, but Theron received a full six and Fahad two. I went with four Greyscales, Jac, and Angel, and three on Siren. Fahad was up first, charging into Shark, taking him out in two attacks easily and dodging around to engage Angel. Me 4 v Cam 2. Cam also played Man Marking for an extra two influence. He also triggered the linked activation with Zerola, who grabbed the ball and jogged off to the back right, taking the ball out of range for me to grab this turn.  I decided to charge Jac into Chaska, knocking him down and pushing him about. Jaecar then sprinted around Greyscales, taking a parting blow and some damage, before laying into Siren, who was left on 3hp and knocked down.

3 - Part way T2.jpg

I wasn’t sure what to do next, but figured this wasn’t going to be my turn so I best set myself up for next. I activated Angel and struck out at Fahad, missing everything on my first attack. My second attack was all hits however and I hit momentous double dodge, then sprinted just short of Zerola (not wanting to trigger Unpredictable Movement) and activated Nimble. Theron went next, finishing off Siren and turning on Jac who was snared and took minor damage. Me 4 v Cam 4.

I ran Salt around Vet Hearne to trigger the trap next to Greyscales before Vet Hearne moved in to join the gang up on Jac, who took a little more damage. Greyscales made his way up the pitch into cover on the left, clearing conditions on Jac but discarding his last influence. Finally, Chaska stood up and used Boom Box twice (from a blessing) to knock Jac back a total of 8”.

Cam was well ahead in momentum and was first up again. I brought Shark back on the right side and Siren in front my goal. Influence for me went six to Shark, four Angel, two Greyscales, one Jac and Siren. Chaska was up first, charging Jac and pushing him back two, before hitting Boombox and sending him off the table. Me 4 v Cam 6. I was ok with this play however because it allowed Angel to sprint around Zerola into Tap In range, grabbing the ball on the way, Super Shot, then easily score goal number two. Me 8 v Cam 6. The ball came back in into space between Greyscales, Jaecar, and the scrum to the right. Scatter was favourable to me and put Greyscales in a goal scoring position. This forced Cam to activate Vet Hearne to grab the ball and pass to Jaecar – which he missed. His original scatter would have allowed Jaecar to snap the ball, but I played Match Fixing and instead it ended up heading the same direction, but much further, snapping to Fahad instead.

4 - End game

With eyes on the prize I activated Shark. He charged Fahad who went defensive stance. I scored a momentous dodge, second attack netted the tackle, two more attacks (one Fahad, one Chaska) for another two momentous dodges, hit his legendary (in the event my dice went bad), then a clear pass to Angel, who then nailed a bonus timed snap shot (with Super Shot this was a six dice kick needing two 3s) to score goal number three. Match over, Me 12 v Cam 6.

Aftermath

Kicking off with Siren is something I’ve wanted to try for a while now. I think I shouldn’t have sent her up as far, but it turned out ok. I possibly should have used Knee Slider to get Shark back more, but that would have meant saying goodbye to Siren turn one. The scrum in the middle was a real mire for me, but after Shark and Siren were taken out in turn two, it allowed me to spread everyone out and cover all sides of the pitch, while Cam was roving around in a pack. Cam’s shanked pass to Jaecar was a real boon to me, but even he’d nailed it, chances are he’d be looking at a goal and a take out (Siren again0, with the ball coming back in for Shark to pick up and score with. So tough spot all round for him.

Finally, Jac getting knocked off the pitch was pretty cool too. I like it when things get knocked off the pitch, even my own.

I’m hoping to teach the basics of Guild Ball to my youngest brother this weekend, then next Thursday I’ll be back at it again for another match. Till then!

 

 

Guild Ball – Fish (Shark) v Union (Blackheart)

Game from the other Thursday that I hadn’t got around to posting up, Fish v Union. Unfortunately there was no game last week (18 May 2017), but I’ll aim to get this week’s game up more promptly after the fact.

Line-up

Me: Greyscales, Salt (msct), Siren, Shark (cpt), Jac, Angel

Darryl (of Nerdvana Games): Mist, Blackheart, Coin, Snakeskin, Avarisse & Greede, Decimate.

Match Report

I won the roll off and elected to receive. Snakeskin kicked off and scored a poor scatter, so Darryl re-rolled and scored a worse scatter, putting the ball a bit in front of Salt. I went with six influence for Shark, four for Angel, and one a piece for everyone else. Salt activated first, collected the ball and passed to Siren. This was a big mistake, because Snakeskin then activated, charged Siren, tackled the ball, threw up clone, and dodged, then scored. Me 0 v Darryl 4. Snakeskin then repositioned into cover.

6 - Kickoff.jpg

Ikicked the ball back in just in front Siren and used her to collect and pass to Shark. Decimate then moved up the pitch. Shark then put Quick Foot on Angel, used Tidal Surge on her, then moved up and passed to Angel, who took a momentous dodge 4” up. Coin threw up a token and jogged around a bit, nothing exciting, before Angel made her play. She sprinted up the right side of the pitch, hit Nimble, Supershot, and kicked on goal with five dice. And missed. The ball failed to scatter passed the goal, allowing Blackheart to collect and pass it back and forth between himself and Avarisse. Or he would have, had Avarisse not failed his kick, scattering the ball into space near the centre of the pitch.

7 - right side.jpg

Things were not going well and I could tell this was going to be a quick game, but there had to be something cool I could do. And you better believe there was. Snakeskin was a little over the goal line. I activated Jac, hit Ramming Speed, jogged him into Snakeskin to push her back towards the board edge, then used Jac’s heroic (for the first time ever). A further 4” push put her off the board and Taken Out. Me 2 v Darryl 4.

Next came Avarisse & Greede who powered up the pitch. Greede lept off Avarisse and worked his way through Siren with the ball. He couldn’t get out of both Siren and Jac’s range, but even with the -1 kick for being in Jac’s melee range he easily scored. Me 2 v Darryl 8. The ball came in and Greyscales collected it, before Mist made his way up the pitch.

8 - end T1.jpg

Turn two and I won the roll off and, stupidly, decided to go second. I forgot Mist had 2” melee. Also tackle on the first column. Also that Greyscales has 17” goal threat range. The influence assignment really doesn’t matter. Mist went first, charged Greyscales, nabbed the ball and dodged, and made an easy shot on goal. Match over, Me 2 v Darryl 12.

9 - end of game

Aftermath

It was a very quick game in which I made several mistakes. Passing to Siren: poor choice. Not going first in the second turn: another poor choice. Angel failing a 5 dice kick: the worst luck. I certainly didn’t bring my A game to the table, so hopefully I can be more focused this week!