Thursday 25 August 2011

Muskets and Mohawks 2 Progress Report

Burrovian Lights skirmish with Krautian Dwarves

Street Fighting Rabbits
Just a quick note today.

Have been looking over Muskets and Mohawks 2. Thought it was "done" but on re-inspection the state of THW rules has progressed.

M & M 2 is therefore being tweaked to match.

Do not be frightened by the photos. M & M 2 will be a historical game covering skirmishes in the French and Indian War as well as the American Revolution. I just like to play test with my Flintloque figures.
So far as rules updates are concerned:

  • "In Sight" is being instituted. 
  • Bows have been toned down by not having them inflict "Knock Down" results.
  • Canon and mine rules are being re-visited.
  • Canoe rules are being re-visited.
  • An addition of a point blank range is being considered.
Apologies for the delay but a better game will be the result.


Wednesday 24 August 2011

What's inside War Without End

Here's the back cover with more info:

Coming Soon! - War Without End


War Without End: What Is It?

NUTS! War Without End (WWE) is a supplement for the game NUTS! Europe 1944 by Two Hour Wargames. A copy of that rule set, as well as gaming implements and miniatures, are required to play. Here's what's included:
·         Some actual technology history.
·         Fantastic technologies.
·         Weird Science unit and vehicle lists.
·         Special or expanded rules.
·         General rules on creating your own Weird Science campaigns.
·         Sample scenarios that may be fought head-to-head with players taking opposing sides, cooperatively against the game or solo as either side.

Saturday 20 August 2011

5150: New Beginnings - NEW In Sight Reaction Test - Colonials

5150: New Beginnings introduces a new  interactive In Sight procedure that combines firing with charging and greatly speeds up yet smooths play.
Here's the new 5150: New Beginnings In Sight applied to the Colonial period. In this report a band of bandits run into a group of Italian Askaris.

Sunday 14 August 2011

5150: New Beginnings AAR - Mr. Bad Example

Word on the streets of NHC is there's a Grath running a large organization. Not only is it strange that there's a Grath in charge, rumor has it he's unlike any other. he displays emotions like anger, which is not a good thing. Here's the AAR.

Saturday 13 August 2011

IGOUGO versus the THW System

Here's an excerpt from 5150: New Beginnings that explains the difference between traditional games and the THW reaction System. As you can see with the Reaction System players are always involved in the game. We use individual figures in the example to make it easier to follow but the mechanics apply to groups and squads as well.

Traditional Games

Traditional games use a turn sequence known as “IGO, UGO”. This means that I move my figures, fire weapons, we do some melee and maybe you do a morale test or two.
THW uses what is called the Reaction System. In THW games your side activates and you move part of your force. That triggers a reaction from parts of my force. I immediately react and this may cause you to react in kind. Here’s an example of both systems using one figure on each side.


Our figures start on opposite sides of a building and cannot see each other, also known as out of sight of each other.
·         It’s my turn and I move first.
·         I move my figure around the corner and see your figure.
·         I shoot at your figure.
·         You either get hit or not.
·         If you get hit I see how bad the damage is.
·         If you don’t get hit maybe you take a morale test or maybe you don't.  
·         Now it’s your turn.
·         If you stay where you are you shoot at me.
·         You either hit me or not.
·         If you get a hit you see how bad the damage is.
·         If you don’t get a hit maybe I take a morale test or maybe I don’t. 
·         Now it’s my turn again.
The big thing is I get to move and shoot at you and you can’t do anything about it. 

THW Reaction System

Now let's go through the same scenario using the Reaction System. Our figures start on opposite sides of a building and cannot see each other, also known as out of sight of each other.
·         I activate and move first.
·         I move my figure around the corner and your figure can see me.
·         You get a chance to react to me.
·         Maybe you shoot at me.
·         Maybe you don’t.
·         If you do shoot at me either you hit me or you miss.
·         If you hit me you see how bad the damage is.
·         But if you miss me I get a chance to react back.
·         Maybe I shoot back.
·         Maybe I duck back for cover.
·         Or maybe I run away.
·         We continue to fire back and forth until either one of us gets hit, runs out of ammo, ducks back behind cover, or runs away.
·         When all my actions and all reactions that they have caused are finished, it’s your turn.
The big thing is you immediately get to react to what I do, during my turn, just like in real life.
There are a variety of Reaction Tests in 5150: New Beginnings but don’t let that discourage you. You’ll be using only two of them 95% of the time. After a few turns you’ll have them memorized and will rarely refer to the rules. It’s that simple.

5150: New Beginnings - Explaining the NEW In Sight Reaction Test

5150: New Beginnings is the new, soon to be released, sci-fi immersion game from Two Hour Wargames. As the game deals with each player having a small number of figures or characters comprising their group, and getting into more detail, this allows THW to return to its roots. Individual Reaction Tests for individual figures.
In the original In Sight Reaction Test found in Six Gun Sound and Chain Reaction, AKA Guns and Girls, each figure, whether active or inactive, would take the In Sight Test. As players wanted a way to play bigger games with more figures the system would break down. To remedy this we made two changes.
1 - All of the Reaction Tests would be taken by the group with one set of d6 being rolled and applied to each individual in the group taking the test.
2 - Only the inactive player would take the In Sight Test.
While this did and still does work well for games where a large number of figures and many groups are used, it took away the grittier personal feel of the original Chain Reaction game. As 5150: Star Army handles military games and large groups the companion book, 5150: New Beginnings, by its focus on more detailed smaller groups required a more personal touch.
So, we've returned to but tweaked the old ways. 
1 - All Reaction Tests, except the Cohesion Test borrowed from 5150: Star Army, are taken individually.
2 - The In Sight Test is taken by all figures that qualify for the test, i.e. have a Line of Sight to an enemy.
For this to work we had to trim the number of dice rolls that would be needed. This was done by a new Ranged Combat Damage Table where damage is reduced to one 2d6 roll based on weapon Impact. While it may look different it stays true to the math used in the current THW damage tables. This is important. It's still the same result just a different way to get there!
And the other way is the new procedure for In Sight and sequence of firing.
To make this easier to understand we've decided to release this detailed but simple example of how it works. So let's get started!


Two Gangers are on the street. Two SWAT Team members are around the corner. Both groups are out of sight of each other. 
Gangers: Both Gangers are Rep 4 and armed with Assault Rifles
SWAT Team members: Both Team members are Rep 5 and armed with BA Submachine Guns.

The two Gangers are on the street.

The same situation as seen from above. The two SWAT members are on the other side of the building. Neither side can see each other.

SWAT activates and one team member steps into view. This immediately triggers an In Sight Test for both sides. In this picture we see the SWAT member come into sight.

Here's the situation from above. Note that the second SWAT member is still out of sight.

Before the In Sight Test is taken the group triggering the test is allowed to move all of their figures up to 2" if desired. The first SWAT member moves further into the open and the second now moves up to the wall, will count cover, and can see and be seen,

Here's the situation from above with all figures now having LOS to targets. They all will now take the In Sight Test.

Now that all the figures in the triggering group that wanted to have moved up to 2" the In Sight Test is taken by all figures that have LOS to an enemy. Note that if desired the SWAT team member could have moved back out of sight! However in this case all four figures will take the test.
The first step in the new In Sight is all shooters declare their targets. Easy rule is that shooters will target the closest figure and a figure cannot be targeted by more than one shooter until all figures have been targeted.
Stars may choose their targets.
Each figure then starts with 1d6 per point of Rep that it has. This means:
·         SWAT Team members will start with 5d6.
·         Gangers will start with 4d6.
Modifiers to the In Sight Test are simple and easy to remember.
·         If the tester is active it subtracts 1d6.
·         If the target is in cover or concealment the tester subtracts 1d6. Note that in some situations, as in our example, some targets may be in cover and some may not. When this occurs one d6 of a different color is designated to count against the target not in cover.  
In 5150: New Beginnings there are a few more modifiers due to Physical, Chemical and Blended Enhancements as well as Aliens but normally only these two apply.
Back to our example:
·         The SWAT members have targeted the Gangers closest to them and both roll 4d6.
·         The Gangers target the figure closest to them so the Ganger shooting at the SWAT member in the open rolls 4d6 while the one targeting the figure in cover rolls 3d6.
·         All count the number of successes scored, a result of 1, 2 or 3, and lay one d6 with the appropriate number of successes face up.

Black SWAT member has scored 3 successes and will fire first. Red Ganger will fire next as he scored 2 successes while Blue SWAT and Yellow Ganger will fire simultaneously as they both scored 1 success. Any figure scoring zero successes would not be allowed to fire this round!

Here's the situation from above. Note that the d6 reflect the order of fire from highest to lowest with ties firing at the same time! No successes means no dice which mean no firing this round.

Black SWAT fires first and scores a hit on Red Ganger. Red Ganger is knocked down, his d6 picked up as he now cannot fire. Note that damage is NOT rolled for nor is a Received Fire Test taken!

Black SWAT has his d6 removed as he has finished firing. Both Yellow Ganger and Blue SWAT now fire. Blue SWAT misses and Yellow Ganger scores a hit.

Blue SWAT is knocked down. His d6 is removed. If he hadn’t fired he would not be able to fire. Note that damage is NOT rolled for nor is a Received Fire Test taken!

Yellow Ganger has his d6 removed.
As all firing from the first round of In Sight has been resolved damage is now rolled. Red Ganger is out of the fight and blue SWAT is stunned. 

After all fire has been resolved and damage allocated each figure takes their reaction tests. In this case both figures have to take the Man Down and Received Fire Tests. Each figure rolls one set of dice and they are applied to every test that must be taken. When more than one test is taken the worse result is counted. So for example if one test had a carry On result and the other a Duck back result the figure would Duck Back.

Note that Fire and Return Fire on the old Received Fire Test has been replaced with Carry On. Each figure scored a result of Carry On. If desired the active SWAT member could duck back as he still has active movement left. But as he does not choose to do so this means that all qualifying figures roll another round of In Sight. Note that subsequent In Sight Tests will keep the modifiers from the first test. 

·         Red Ganger starts with 4d6 but will subtract 1d6 due to the target being in cover. He rolls 3d6 and scores 2 successes. A d6 reflecting this is placed next to the figure.
·         Blue SWAT starts with 5d6 but subtracts 1d6 for being active. He rolls 4d6 and scores 3 successes. A d6 reflecting this is placed next to the figure. Blue will fire first as he scored more successes.

Blue SWAT fires first and score a hit. Red Ganger is knocked down and his d6 removed. He cannot fire.

Blue SWAT has his d6 removed and damage is rolled. Red Ganger is obviously dead.

Bottom line, net-net, using this procedure results in less dice rolling and plays much faster once you get the hang of it.

Sunday 7 August 2011

5150: New Beginnings AAR - Razor's Edge

Turf Wars

This is a solo play test of 5150: New Beginnings. The scenario pits two rival Gangs against each other. The first Gang is a Razor Gang while the second is a Basic (human) Gang looking to bump off the Razor. Both gangs are on war footing so armed with automatic weapons.
The Encounter takes place in a Lower Income section of New Hope City Late at night. The street is empty as a lone vehicle comes to a stop half way down the street...

 The Razor Gang leaves their vehicle and post a lookout.

Turn 1

Four members of the Rasta Gang quietly enter the street. Moving fast they catch the lookout unawares. A blow to the head quickly dispatches the unaware Hishen (Rep 3 AR). Pausing for a minute they wait to see if they were heard.

Turn 2
Jimmy (Rep 5 AR), the Rasta Leader sends Big T (Rep 4 AR) to the edge of the house setting him up with a clear shot down the driveway. If anyone tries to leave through the back door its Big T's job to stop them.
Quietly Jimmy picks the lock (Challenge test). Opening the door slowly he motions to Tony (Rep 4 Shot Gun) and Clarence (Rep 4 BASMG) to follow.

 This picture show the Rasta guys entering the building, still on the tabletop.

A Hishen (Rep 3 SMG) and Grath (Rep 4 BA SMG) step out the back door and into Big T's line of sight. Green moves into 5 and sight. Big T and the Grath fire at same time. The Hishen is cut down and goes out of the fight. Big T is hit and goes down as well. 
The PEF inside and on the building grid turns into two figures that are placed on the tabletop as they exit the building.
The Grath takes two rounds in the chest but is unfazed.
The gunfire is heard all along the street and Jimmy realizes that the cops may be alerted so they have to move fast.

Turn 3

Moving quickly the Grath re-enters the house. "Check the house," the Razor says to the two remaining Hishen. The two hastily move to carry out the order. Using the doorway as cover they move into the kitchen and into sight of the three Rasta guys.

 The Rasta guys and the Grath are placed on the building grid as the action goes inside.
The open floor plan provides a clear line of sight between both sides. A hail of murderous gunfire leaves Tony and the two Hishen dead.
  The action stays indoors. Once the PEFs are resolved normal LOS and shooting rules apply. The long open floor plan is murder.

Turn 4
Listening for sirens but hearing none Jimmy and Clarence move forward into the dining room. Suddenly the Grath pops into the kitchen and the three exchange fire.
In New Beginnings figures inside buildings count as in cover (if stationary) or concealed (if moving). This not only provides protection but also cuts down reaction time in the new In Sight Test where both sides roll against each other.

Even thought the fire is ineffectual the Rasta guys duck back down either side of the hallway. Jimmy has unloaded his clip and must reload.
Clarence pops back out and he and the Grath exchange fire again. Clarence takes two hits and goes down, unconscious and out of the fight.
Jimmy reloads and wonders what to do.
 In New Beginnings both sides take the In Sight at the same time so there's a chance that the fire can alternate between sides depending upon the individual figure's score. Those that get hit cannot fire when it's there turn so the importacne of making every round count cannot be stressed enough.
Turn 5  
Still no sirens to be heard and in this neighborhood that's no surprise.
The Grath has Jimmy pinned and tells the Razor. The Razor exits the garage and heads towards the front of the house. She figures to climb in through the bedroom window and get behind Jimmy.
This tactic came solely from the game mechanics. It had devastating results.
Except Jimmy has had enough. He can’t make it to the front door without the Grath seeing him but maybe he can make it out of a window. Jimmy ducks into the bedroom behind him.

Turn 6

Still no sirens heard.
Jimmy runs to the window, opens it up and sees the Razor looking at him on the other side. Jimmy's gun goes up but is no match for the Razor who can fire her Mental Blast with a thought. Jimmy's brain fries as he drops to the ground Stunned.
The Razor climbs into the window and calls for the Grath.

So ends another game with me losing.


It was a fun and tense game with the battle going back and forth. I played the Rasta guys and learned the hard way, again, that Graths are tough characters to deal with. Yes a head shot can take them out but that involves some luck. My best chance was with Jimmy who had three shots at the Grath. If I could have rolled a six, the total of eleven with his Rep, would have allowed for a hit to the visible body part of my choice. And that would have been the head. Instead I rolled snake eyes, out of ammo and Clarence went hero on me.
Playing the Rastas all I knew ahead of time was that it was a Razor Gang. They were deployed as per the PEF rules inside the house and when they left through the back door I was as surprised as anyone. Luckily I had Big T watching the back door. Unfortunately he ran into the Grath.

New Beginnings leans on the new Building Rules found in I, Zombie. by allowing the players to fully use their existing buildings the games can have more action in a smaller space. The one foot square building grid can be placed right on the table and I use free floor tile samples from Home Depot. Here's a free download of the rules as use in I, Zombie.

Monday 1 August 2011

5150 New Beginnings AAR: COPS: Raid on the Plasteel Pony

Left to Right: Red Heine, Southside Johnny, Jerry Mander outside the Plasteen Pony
This post is also available on M C Monkey-Dew's Games blog
This is a solo game played using the current incarnation of 5150: New Beginnings, soon to be released by Two Hour Wargames. I've set this game in the Space Rangers universe and in this game I will be taking the role of the Judges of the Titan Rangers. The system will handle the baddies and anyone else who might happen by.

Southside Johnny is the leader of a street gang; The Asbury Nukes. The Nukes have declared their neighborhood a no go zone for Judges.You have to give them credit for moxie that's for sure. Mind you their neighborhood is one of the most run down and crime ridden in the city.

Needless to say, such a claim cannot go undisputed and four Judges are moving in for an early morning raid on the gang's hangout and HQ, The Plasteel Pony.
Initial Deployment
The Rangers strike force deployed in two groups. Judges Baen and Esqueza would enter the table from the right, throw a couple of flash bangs through the front window and then enter the building from the front. Judges Stone and Phillipi would enter from the left, break in through the rear side door, throwing flash bangs as they did so. That was the plan anyway.

Stealthy Approach
"Lucky" Starr
Gang member "Lucky" Starr was on duty as lookout atop the building. Fortunately he was not very alert and the Judges initial approach was undetected.

Unfortunately Lucky made the Judges before they reached their jump off points and screamed the alarm.

Judge Baen bellowed a demand for surrender as the Judges drew their weapons.

In response, Lucky promptly leaped off his perch and made a run for it.

Lucky lived up to his name as his flight was in a direction my approach had left uncovered.
Meanwhile the Judges moved into position to implement my cunning plan...

Only to find that the Nukes had been tipped off and we had fallen into their even more cunning trap!

Johnny, Jerry, Alice, and Brainz all popped up from behind the parapet on the roof guns blazing...well except for Brainz as he doesn't pack heat.

The In Sight test showed that Johnny would fire first, then Judges Baen and Stone, followed by Jerry and Alice, with Judge Esqueza firing last. Judge Phillipi was not involved in this action as he was out of sight covering the rear side door.

 Southside Johhny shot Judge Stone in the head, killing him instantly while Judge Baen did the same to Jerry Mander.

Esqueza and Alice both fired but scored no hits.

In the following reaction tests, Alice ducked back behind the parapet while Brainz fled the scene following Lucky's path.

This left Judges Baen and Esqueza facing off against Southside for another round of In Sight tests.

Judge Baen hit Southside in the gun arm. The resulting pain was too much for that hard character and he dropped out of the fight clutching his arm. Judge Baen sent Esqueza to check on Stone.

 Baen also radioed Phillipi to coordinate with him in preparation for entering the Plasteel Pony.

At that moment Red burst out of the side door gun drawn, right in front of Judge Phillipi. In the exchange of fire that ensued, Red was killed by a shot to the chest.
The Judges burst into the building.
Up on the roof, Alice considered her options...
...and decided she wanted to go out   in a blaze of  Glory!  
She quickly made her way back down into the building...
...while the Judges conducted a room by room search of the premises.
Suddenly Alice and Judge Phillipi were face to face and muzzle to muzzle. Alice was quicker and aimed true. Her bullet hit Phillipi square in the chest. 
Phillipi's life was saved by his armor but never the less he was out of action for the rest of the game.

Making her way towards the side door, Alice next ran into Judge Esqueza.
This time it was the Judge who got the upper hand. Alice was hit in the leg and blacked out briefly. When she recovered she found herself cuffed with the Judges working to staunch the blood flowing from her wound.

Lucky and Brainz are still at large. However with the deaths of Mander and Heine, and with Southside and Alice safely in custody the gang has been shattered.

The city mourns the loss of Judge Stone. He will be avenged.
Another fun one. Had a brown trousers moment when things went pear shaped and we were ambushed.  Judge Baen's coolness and leadership proved decisive.  Ed tells me the  rules are just about set in stone and the game played very smoothly. As this game shows the game need not be limited to the Gaea Prime background. With a little imagination it can be used in any sci fi/near future setting.