Shelved Games

The previous posts have been about what has not yet been played yet and what is currently being played. This last post on the subject is the rather long list of some of those games that have been shelved and relegated to the Loft Full Of Lead. Some of which are simply earlier versions of a game that was superseded by a newer, but not always improved version.

Rogue Trader (1987)
This is what got me into table top wargames. I loved the setting, I loved the pointy nosed Space Marines and the original Orks were brilliant. I still have the original Orks, loads of the little green devils, and quite a few of the classic dustbin dreadnoughts. First generation Orks were much smaller than todays “heroic” scale models, the box of Space Ork Raiders from this period would look tiny next to Orks from the current era.

We had plenty of variation in the forces we played, one of the guys in our gaming group had a great collection of Squats.

There were two great expansion books that were released, Slaves To Darkness came out around 1988 and was followed by The Lost And The Damned in 1990.

These two books introduced loads of Chaos background and the origins of the Great Heresy.

After the Chaos books came Ere We Go and Freebooterz. These were expansions for the Orks which suited me just fine. All sorts of Ork Clans were introduced, loads of new rules and an oasis of background.

The model sculpts from this period were excellent, loads of character and with a great sense of humour. When Weirdboyz started to appear, they were utterly insane, some with pointy hats, some as a combo model with two Minderz to the keep the Weirdboy in check.

One of the best things about being an Ork player was that you could custom build anything, especially vehicles. Take any vehicle chassis and chop the hell out of it to make it into something Orky, with plenty of spikes…and guns. It was also a good idea to paint it red as every Ork knows that red ones go faster.

All the early edition books take pride of place on my book self and I still like to flick through them now and then, I still have thoughts of resurrecting the ancient Orks and getting them back into a game sometime.

Blood Bowl Second Edition (1988)
The first edition was the cardboard pitch with cutout figures, which I did not really know much about. When the second edition came out with the grey polystyrene pitch version, I was hooked. A good game, but I have to say, third edition did improve on it.

Adeptus Titanicus (1988) and Space Marine (1989)
The game that went on to become Epic 40K used a ridiculous number of counters to record Titan damage if I remember right, but the game itself was enjoyable as you had the chance to field massive armies of Titans, vehicles and infantry.

Space Hulk First Edition (1989)
The original Space Hulk was and still is a great game. The hordes of Genestealers that came in the box formed the backbone of a Warhammer 40K force as well.

Advanced Space Crusade (1990)
I was less impressed with Advanced Space Crusade, the Space Marine Scouts were not very good models, but the Tyranids made up for them.

The floorplans are good and really should get used in another game sometime.

Warhammer Fantasy Battle Fourth Edition (1992)
When the box set of Warhammer Fantasy Battle came out with the subsequent Arcane Magic box, that was when I first properly started gaming fantasy. I have fond memories of that time.

Warhammer 40K Second Edition (1993)
I enjoyed second edition, I got to expand my Ork collection somewhat, lots more vehicles, more dreadnoughts. It introduced data cards for vehicles and wargear cards for infantry and vehicles.

Man O’War (1993)
When Man O’War was released, I liked the idea of trying a game at another scale and something that was not land based. Although it was quite fun, there were lots of counters (as usual) to track ship damage.

Warzone First Edition (1995)
I finally managed to move onto something non-Game$ Work$hop. Warzone introduced some new armies and a new way to play games with new rules, for a start using D20’s to resolve combats rather than the ubiquitous D6.

I had two main forces, the Imperial and the Brotherhood.

I did buy some Dark Legion and Capitol, but never really finished them off, they ended up being used in other games in the coming years. In 2014, Warzone Resurrection was released and my Dark Legion were resurrected once again.

Warzone Second Edition (1998)
A rewrite of the Warzone rules did change quite a lot but it did keep the alternate unit activation mechanics which made it so different from the Game$ Work$shop games systems. Second edition also saw a huge reworking of the model range and the quality of the scuplts really improved.

Target Games seemed to be doing really well and from what I cam make out, they broke themselves by trying to fund a computer game.

My Brotherhood force became the core of a Grey Knights army many years later. My Imperial get used in my own No Limits rules.

Warhammer 40K Third Edition (1998)
Third edition simplified a lot of the rules and removed lots of tables and charts. I guess it was this version that first started the beginning of the end for my love affair with 40K. I actually liked the earlier versions of 40K much more with their utterly insane Mad Boy Mania’s and Dreadnought Mobz.

Vor (1999)
This was a great sci-fi game produced by FASA (of Battletech fame) but imploded when FASA went out of business. This was a great shame, the game had huge potential as it allowed the creation of custom forces, basically being able to use any models from any range in a single sci-fi setting.

Dark Age (2002)
After Vor came Dark Age, a game inspired by the artwork of Brom and created by many of the die-hard fans of Vor. I got involved in some playtesting and built up a sizeable force of Drayri which were really nice models. But with few opponents in my part of the world, it faded away here.

Warmachine (2003)
I got into this right at the very start and bought into the plain cardboard box version of the starter sets before the packaging ever got fancy. I picked up Khador, nice big red walking machines.

In the long run, I found there were too many individual rules in this game for me so gradually stopped playing. I hardly noticed the release of the Mark II rules or indeed Hordes, although the models do continue to be of superb quality.

Hybrid (2003)
Rackham released a dungeon type board game in 2003, Hybrid. As with other Rackham games, it was beautifully produced, great artwork, the floorplans were exceptionally well detailed. The games only ever really featured two factions, the Griffon versus the Dirz. It was a shame other races from the Confrontation world never made it into the game before Rackham ceased to be.

Babylon 5 – A Call To Arms (2004)
This was may space fleet fix. I went for the Shadows, easy to paint. Game was okay, it was popular for a while.

Warhammer 40K Fourth Edition (2004)
Another incarnation of the cash cow. I bought it because lots of people played and it was easy to get a game, but I was not that keen.

I think I skipped fifth edition.

Legends Of The Old West (2004)
Another small scale skirmish game we tried was Legends Of The Old West from the Warhammer Historical range. We only needed a small gang of models each to get into it which did not take long to paint up.

It is another nice little game, but yet another that struggles to find regular playing time. It will not be surprising to find out that there are more unpainted western models in the Loft Full Of Lead.

Flames Of War Second Edition (2006)
Second edition came out not too long after I had actually started playing first edition, which was a bit annoying. However, in a first for the gaming world, as far as I know, Battlefront released a free upgrade of the rules. I have a fully finished and painted US Armoured Infantry Company, which I was actually very pleased with, but I just don’t get on with the rules. It is obviously as very popular game, by far the most succesful of the World War II 15mm games (I reckon Bolt Action has 28mm covered).

I have an unpainted German Company and I can’t see myself painting them.

Secrets Of The Third Reich (2008)
Westwinds Secrets Of The Third Reich is an alternative World War II game, set in 1947 in a world where the war never ended and new weapons have been invented.

I started with an Axis army that featured loads of zombies. The range of walking tanks was something a bit new and there was also the option of creating custom walker profiles, which of course I did with a particularly large plastic kit that got modified a bit.

The game itself is good, but infantry  have a habit of getting slaughtered very quickly. We found a lot of our game descended into battles between powerful vehicles.

Legends Of The High Seas (2008)
With all the pirate models I had been collecting, we tried this game out a few times. The campaign rules looked promising and it does have rules for using large ships.

There are also plenty of character profiles listed in the book to go with the standard crusty and very salty sea dogs.

Tomorrows War (2011)
Tried this a few times but found it a bit unbalanced, if the tech level of the two forces fighting it out is too far apart, then it is horribly one sided.

The idea is there, using any models in a modern or future setting, but it did not seem well laid out and we did struggle to get a smooth game played.

Warhammer 40K Sixth Edition (2012)
I wish I had skipped sixth edition. I updated my Blood Angels and re-re-converted my Grey Knights. Really did not like the rules.

So after all that lot, I think I just need to buy less new games and stick to what I already have.

Yeah, right…

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Paused Games

After my “currently playing” and “too many” games posts, I was working on a shelved games post, but could not bring myself to include these two games in that category. So I have created a new category of “paused” games, these are games that may have not been played in the last twelve months, but I still count as among my favourite games

orc-jackal-tracker2Confrontation Third Edition
Probably my favourite game of the last ten years, so why don’t I play it more often?

Joken and I had been keeping it alive up until about a year ago, but several other new games muscled in to our limited gaming time and Confrontation was one that suffered.

devourer-huntsman2Confrontation was (is) a superb skirmish game from Rackham that was popular up until 2010 when the company imploded. We still lament its passing. The figures were some of the best I have ever seen.

My first army were the Devourers, giant wolf type bipeds with some scary weapons and attitude. I dabbled with the Griffon and then got into the Orcs in a big way. I also had a large Tir-Na-Bor Dwarf army that remained unpainted for ages until we started Frostgrave recently.

To make matters worse, I also bought a load of Cadwallon models from eBay with the intention of getting a new faction painted and into play. It may be more likely that they end up seeing action as another Frostgrave faction.

There is still an unpainted Goblin warband in the Loft Full Of Lead, they have been up there so long, I can’t even remember what is in the box. I don’t think there are any more factions lurking up there…

Blood Bowl – Third Edition (Living Rulebook)
In my opinion, the best Game$ Work$hop game. I will be going back to this, it is just a question of time. I have played in and run a few leagues over the years and it never gets old.

Not sure how many teams I have, but apart from standard Human, Orc, Dark Elf and Undead teams, I have put together some more unusual teams including using unofficial rules such as for the Snotlings, which quite frankly were rubbish, but amusing.

Currently Playing

My previous post went on about how many rule books I have that I have not tried yet, but fortunately there is a reasonably healthy list of games that do get played on a regular or a least semi-regular basis.

I have limited those listed here to games played in the last twelve months or so. Anything else should really fall into the shelved category.

frostgravecover

One of the biggest releases recently has been Frostgrave, a single book with an (optional) supporting range of models, which is actually unusual for an Osprey book.

This is one of those rule books that was purchased and then tried quite quickly. One of the advantages of Frostgrave is that one can use just about any fantasy figures, so with 25 years worth of stuff in the Loft Full Of Lead, it would have been a sad day if I could not muster a ten man warband. Apart from my dislike of the ranged combat rules, it just seems way to difficult to hit anything, it is a nice game with a simple campaign system.

dusttacticsWhen the original Dust Tactics box was released, I bought it for GB£60 if I remember correctly. At that stage I was moderately interested in Dust but must more interested in the four Mechs in the box. I tried out the Dust Tactics rules a few times but on the whole was not converted, I would rather play a game on a scenery base table rather than a tile based table.

What I did like was the proper tabletop wargame Dust Warfare that came out shortly after. This used more traditional tabletop wargames rules.

As if that was not enough, Dust Studios then release Dust Tactics 2.0 which included another tabletop variant called Dust Battlefield. I have not tried the revised Tactics rules, but have played the Battlefield version, which is brutal.

bushidoGTC Studios is another small company that deserve plenty of support. Their fantasy Samurai Bushido rules use an excellent opposed dice roll combat system which is quite different to anything else I have played. It adds an extra element to the phase, rather than just one player rolling to hit and then damage. I have four factions in total, but two favourites, The Savage Wave and the Cult Of Yurei. The other two, The Ito and The Prefecture get used much less.

empireofthedeadWestwinds Empire Of The Dead is a very simple game, with plenty of factions but not restricted to their own model range. I was able to drop in loads of Lead Adventure models and various other makes to put together several gangs, especially a Gentleman Club as they are quite generic.

Being able to plunder my Fantasy Vampire Counts army was very useful, including the black coach and some nice character Vampires.

Many years ago, Warzone, both the first and second editions was my staple sci-fi game. It is what replaced 40K and really opened my eyes to the world outside of Game$ Work$hop. Unfortunately, the publisher Target Games stretched themselves too thin and they imploded.

warzone-resurrection-logoFast forward to 2014 and Prodos have acquired the rights and produced Warzone Resurrection, effectively a third edition for those with a long memory. They kicked off the reboot with a Kickstarter campaign that generated a fair some of cash and a late product delivery. I resisted that Kickstarter, my thoughts were that I already have piles of figures in the Loft Full Of Lead and would eventually get the rule book if any other gaming colleagues decided to jump in at a later stage, which Joken did, buying into the Capitol.

AgeOfSigmarAge Of Sigmar is the controversial reboot of Warhammer Fantasy Battle. I bailed out of Warhammer Fantasy Battle a long time ago as it just was not fun any more. My fantasy fix was fulfilled by my No Quarter rules with their Siege and Naval Battles supplements.

When Game$ Work$hop released the free rules and army lists, sorry, I meant Warscrolls, then it seemed like a good idea to give it a go. There was none of this rushing out to but the accompanying box set with its Blood Angel Sigmarines, it was more a case of seeing what we already have that fits the army lists. So having a played a couple of games of Empire versus Undead, I think we can say that it is very simplistic but a good chance to play a massive game for the spectacle and a good laugh.

afistfullofkungfuA Fist Full Of Kung Fu is a new release from Osprey. It is a reasonably simple set of rules that tries to recreate a movie confrontation. Once again, it is possible to use various models to fulfill each sides gang, so I have quite a mixture from all sorts of places, some of which I don’t even know where they came from.

One of the nice features of Fist Full Of Kung Fu is the ability to “find stuff” during the game, like a gun or the makings of a Molotov Cocktail or “break stuff” causing something unpleasant to happen to an opponent. Generally good fun.

untitledAT-43 may be defunct, but myself and Joken still dig it out and have a game even now and then. We usually get a truly massive game in around Christmas just to see how much we can get on a table.

Towards the end of 2014, I bought a Cogs army from various sellers on Ebay, but the Karman are still my favourite. Some gamers have created an AT-43 crossover army list for Dust, which I will have to try against Mr Steinberg.

Rivet_Wars_BoxRivet Wars is what I class as a board game, so the models will not get painted unless I find myself with so much time on my hands I have nothing else to do. Retired maybe…

This is great game when I can’t make up my mind what else to do. Just unbox and play. The rules are very simple and its great fun. The models are excellent and a change from the usual 28mm scale I game with.

DystopianWarsLogoFor something a bit different, we have a 1/1200th scale ship combat games Dystopian Wars. This is another of those games that comes out now and then. There has been a few changes to the rules, but we are sticking to the “modified” version of the original book, which is not as confusing as it sounds. I have one fleet, it is all painted, which is something of a rarity and I don’t have plan to get another fleet.

boltactionOne would think that Osprey Publishing is taking over at the Loft Full Of Lead, Bolt Action is a joint venture from Osprey and Warlord Games.

I like this game as the random nature of unit activation adds an extra suspense each time a player draws a dice. My main army is my US Army, which to be fair is mostly Westwind Secrets Of The Third Reich models.

arcadiaquestboxArcadia Quest is another Kickstarter purchase that I got to see is the kids would be interested in a board game of this genre. The chibi style models caught their interest and we have started a once a week after school games night where we get to explore the city and chop up the bad guys. It does take a while to set up as there are loads of counters and cards.

adventuretimecardwarsAnother game for the kids, but which I secretly enjoy, is Card Wars, a card based on the characters of the Adventure Time cartoon series. It actually seems to play a lot like Magic The Gathering if I remember right. It is mad and silly but where else do you get a chance to “floop the pig”.

The final three I am listing here are games that I have written myself going back to 2001.

NoQuarterNo Quarter was written because I had given up on Warhammer Fantasy Battle and still wanted to use my models for something. It has expanded over the years to include a few supplements for Siege and Naval Battles. I actually still have plans to simplify it a bit more and introduce a two action mechanic as used in Steam Wars.

nolimitsNext came No Limits around 2006 which used the same mechanics as No Quarter but designed for sci-fi games. This was my chance to get all of my old Space Marine, Ork, Warzone, Dark Age and Vor models back on the table. I would still like to expand on it some more, but there is never the time. I also bought a few unusual armies form independent businesses such as The Spugs and the Hydrissians to name two.

steam-wars1The latest effort is Steam Wars, which regular readers will have seen in some recent posts, it pits steampunk forces against each other but with a hint of late fantasy.

Too Many Unplayed Games…

Mr Steinberg made the point the other day that are too many games vying for our attention. This is indeed true. The problem is that we keep buying even more new rules and adding to the pile…

Osprey Publishing keep on popping out nice little rulesets for different periods and genres that seem like a good idea to try out.

A conversation sort of goes like this;

roguestars“Seen that new set of rules coming out next month, [insert book name here] looks interesting and you only need ten figures to get stuck in.”

“I have some of those from [insert a model range here] that I don’t use any more.”

“…and I have always wanted to get some of these [insert independent model company here] figures just because they are great sculpts and would look brilliant painted.”

..and so on.

The end result is that new rule books are constantly acquired and in some cases a game is arranged to try them out. But in quite a few cases, the rules end up on a shelf as other even newer shiny toys distract an honest wargamer with limited gaming time, but who can always find a few pounds sterling to spend on a discounted book.

Since reorganising my book shelves, I have grouped all the unplayed rules into one section, which takes up more space than one would like.

onthesevenseasOn The Seven Seas is an Osprey pirate game that grabbed my attention, I was particularly interested in the rules for sailing ships at 28mm scale as I appear to have a small fleet of large ships.

Fighting boarding actions has always been a game scenario I have wanted to play out. In the end, I just built my own ships and wrote my own rules using the core of my No Quarter game and coming up with a Naval Battles supplement.

Of course it is not only Osprey who are banging out new rules to tempt us, there are plenty of books from other publishers on my bookshelf that have been sitting there for a while in some cases. However Osprey books do have a habit of being very reasonably priced as well as being about as regular as a monthly magazine.

cutlass

I’m not sure when it was released, probably quite a few years ago as I have had models from the Black Scorpion pirate range crewing my ships for quite some time, but I bought Cutlass earlier this year to add to the pirate games on my book shelf, which as a period by itself seems to have more than its fair share of rule books. Cutlass is a set of rules by Gav Thorpe, once of Game$ Work$hop fame, or infamy depending on your view. Personally speaking, anyone who can make a living at their hobby is doing very well indeed.

fightingsail

Fighting Sail is a game at yet another scale, about 1/1200 (or even 1/2400) which allows whole fleets of sailing ships to do battle. I think the plan here is for us to use the Pirates of the Spanish Main cardboard ships from Wizkids that were common a few years ago. I’m sure I have a few around somewhere in the Loft Full Of Lead. Apparently, if I am short a ship or two, then Mr Steinberg can apparently provide an entire fleet. For both sides. And a friend.

freebootersfate

I don’t think I will be playing Freebooters Fate as the game uses profile cards for specific models. Much as though the Freebooters Fate models are very nice, they are quite expensive and I already have plenty of generic pirate, navy and swashbuckling models.

So in total, I currently have four pirate or ship based rule books sitting on the shelf which fall into the unplayed category. That is just the pirate rules.

RelicKnightsOne of the Kickstarters I went in for ages ago was Relic Knights, an anime style small scale game with some really nicely designed figures. However, as it was so late delivering, the guys at my local games club had lost interest and moved on to other even newer things.

Anyway, I have finally started to put together some of the Black Diamond models as I think they could be used as Special Forces models in other games. But with luck, I will actually get a game using the Relic Knights rules as well.

DropzoneCommanderNot since the days of Game$ Work$hop’$ Epic have I played a games around the 1/300th scale. Dropship Commander looked very tempting, but having bought the rule book, I resisted, as on reflection, an army of these lovely models would be quite expensive and take an awful lot of painting.

The other problem is that I don’t have a great deal of appropriately scaled scenery. Apart from my really old polystyrene Epic buildings and some slightly less old cardboard Epic buildings,  I would be relying on the smallest trees in my terrain collection and some hills.

I am still tempted by gaming at 1/300th scale, ages ago I bought a small army of Brigade Games tanks, APC’s and some Germy infantry. They are sort of painted, but not actually found a set of rules, or an opponent to try them out.

kampfgruppenormandyKampfgruppe Normandy was an impulse buy several years ago at Salute I think. Basically, Game$ Work$hop were selling off piles of these books for £5 each. Lets face it, at that price what is not to like. Of course the problem is actually getting to play the game. I have plenty of World War II models and lots of appropriate terrain, just not the get up and go to get up and play. I guess the main problem is that Kampfgruppe Normandy is competing with Bolt Action which is a WWII game that has plenty of players, support, new rules and a large range of models.

The next three on the new and unplayed shelf are all Osprey books.

inhermajestysnameIn Her Majesty’s Name is another in the steampunk genre. With the plethora of appropriate models being painted around here over the last year or so, another set of rules seemed like a good idea, but with Empire Of The Dead and my very own Steam Wars, I’m sure when will get around to it. There is even a supplement available but I am definitely not getting that until I at least give the core book a go. How hard can it be?

roninGoing back a few years, I was at Salute with Joken and he really fancied trying out a small scale Samurai game. We bought some Samurai models with a view to painting them up and perhaps downloading a freebie set of pdf rules. It was not long after Salute that we discovered Bushido and were sucked into the world of fantasy Samurai. As it turned out, the Bushido guys were all ex-Confrontation players and that sat very well indeed with us. But not one to pass yet another rule book to read, I bought Ronin as a possible alternative.

blackopsThe most recent acquisition is the Black Ops book. This is indeed one of those games that tempts me because of all the fantastic models out there waiting to be bought and painted. For Black Ops I thought the Black Scorpion modern US Marines would have been perfect, but they seem to have disappeared from the Black Scorpion web site. But don’t panic, Hasslefree have a load of modern soldiers perfect for the job. With all the other projects on the go, perhaps by Salute next year I will be ready to buy some.

stargrunt2EDIT: I did forget one, I bought Stargrunt II at a show years ago as I have so many figures from different ranges and this may have been a way to get them all into a game.

I think that is the new and unplayed list, although it does not include a board game or two that languishes in the Loft Full Of Lead. There could be more that have been unplayed for so long that I have forgotten about them.

Drop Pod

As my steampunk Prussians have their tunneling machine for launching surprise attacks from below, I thought my Regency army should have the ability to strike from above. This retro drop pod came from Urban Constructs.
droppod1
It is quite heavy and definitely needed the legs pinning to the passenger compartment. The casting is a bit raw in places, but if I can get some serious re-entry burn effect going on them it should turn out okay. Then again, as this is steampunk, it is more likely to have been dropped from an airship…
droppod2
I will have to get in touch with them before the next show and see if I can get some extra legs for a couple of ideas I have.

Meridian Kickstarter Delivers

My Meridian Miniatures Kickstarter delivered today, another pile of lead to be painted.
meridianKS
This is a great addition to Andrew May’s steampunk range and should be on his Meridian Miniatures website in the not to distant future.
newinfantry
The militia models will make a good alternative unit for army, I also reckon they will be really good as a crew for Empire Of The Dead. It will also make a nice change to not paint them all in the same uniform, the militia can be painted in a wide range of colours.
meridiankickstarter
The existing army is expanding at quite a rate, I really must not buy anything else…
Meridian10