Houston Beer and Pretzel Wargaming

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Blink and It's Gone - Year Six in Review

Posted by Andy on April 28, 2016 at 12:20 AM Comments comments (0)

WOW!  Where did the last year go?


Here it is late April again and, for once, despite having a slow year at writing after-action reports, I find myself actually catching up and knuckling down and writing a recap on time!  I must not be feeling well.


Really, has it been a year already?  Our first full year at the Black Labrador, where we've played in the bar area, the Churchill Room, and Cezannes, and transitioned from meeting on the fourth Monday of every month to the first?


Our attendance this past year has pretty much stayed even, with the occasional new face here and there, continuing to allow us to run one multiplayer game that can cater to as few as two players or as many as eight or more if need be.


This past tear we revisited our annual themes - VSF, modern day Elbonia, zombies - turned back the clock to medieval Japan and leapt ahead to a galaxy far far away.  All the while enjoying each other's company, downing a few beers, and playing it simple, fast, and fun.


So before you blink again and another year passes, you'd better read through the summary of what we got up to over the last twelve months, and take note of what's ahead in the next few.  


If you live in Houston, or plan to visit Houston, why not look us up and come out for a game.  We can always use another wargamer, beer drinker, and friend!


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April 2015 - The Battle for Emden 2085


April saw us kick off our sixth year as a club with a long-in-coming return to OGRE.  Ed hosted and brought all his many metal toys and used them with modified Deluxe OGRE rules to portray a North American Combine Attack against an OGRE assembly plant in Emden.


Simple terrain mixed with simple rules for a fast and fun experience, as the lead Combine forces reached half way down the length of a 12' table but couldn't quite reach their strategic targets before time ran out.


We didn't see a detailed after action, but more photos are here.




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May 2015 - Star Wars X-Wing


To celebrate "May the Fourth Be With You" on May 4th, we ran our third installment of the X-Wing miniatures game, Point of No Return campaign game, centered on the CR90 Correllian Corvette expansion pack.


Rob hosted and we played the Satellite Uplink mission, which turned into a fight of attrition.  The CR-90 was stationary, making it easier for the Imperial pilots, who were able to score a victory.  In the process they took Wedge out of the last installment in the campaign and paved the way for the minefield mission, to be played later this year.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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June 2015 - Return to Elbonia


June brought us back to our favorite imagi-nation, modern Elbonia.  Home of Presdident Robert Wubaqui.  I hosted a game simulating an armored infantry clash along the Elbonian/Garlamistani border, which would later precipitate the Three Week War between those two nations.


We used the Fields of Fire modern warfare rules published by Proving Ground Games, which are designed for 1:285 microarmor and more of a tank centric rule system.  For this game we used 15mm moderns and since everyone likes to play with their own toys, I let them field what they had, within limits.


We experienced what often happens at some of our game nights, too many of us, including myself, were unfamiliar with the rules, which made this slightly complicated set of rules difficult to play simply and quickly, making the whole experience less than total fun.  As evidenced by us not getting through more than a few turns of the game. 


The night was so underwhelming for me that I didn't even write an after action report, although lots of photos were taken and I'm not giving up on these modern battalion/company level rules just yet.  I have too many lovely 15mm T-80 and M1 tanks to paint and have invested in socket bases to allow my 15mm individually based modern infantry to be grouped into teams/squads.


More photos are here.




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July 2015 - Formula 1 Returns to Houston!


Brian ran another successful play test of his Two Hour Wargames rules for car racing, which have now been finished and published as "Win or Go Home!"


Unfortunately, at time of writing, I didn't have access to any photos or notes from that game night.  I didn't attend it myself.  If Brian has anything he wants to add I'll update this blog article for the record.




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August 2015 - Guadeloupe, December 1809


In August we returned to a Beer & Pretzel favorite with Sails of Glory.  Using a bit of creative license and the shore terrain that comes with the game, I fashioned a cove and Daniel, Barry, Dan, and I had fun recreating a bit of Caribbean action.


Over the course of the year, in 1809, British Royal Navy squadrons had isolated and defeated the French Caribbean colonies one by one, until by the autumn Guadeloupe was the only colony remaining in French hands. Cut off from the rest of the world by British blockade squadrons that intercepted all ships coming to or from the island, Guadeloupe was in a desperate situation, facing economic collapse, food shortages and social upheaval, as well as the impending threat of British invasion. In an effort to reinforce and resupply the colony, the French government sent four frigates to the West Indies in November 1809 under Commodore François Roquebert. Two of the ships were only lightly armed, their cannon removed to make room for supplies and troops. Two others were at full strength, ordered to protect the storeships on their journey from the British forces operating off both the French and Guadeloupe coasts.


The French ships were caught in a small cove along the south coast if Guadaloupe and our game tried to simulate a what-if, had the two fully armed French ships not have abandoned their lesser armed charges, as was the case historically.  The French didn't fare well in this one, as expected.


Unfortunately, I never got around to writing an after action for this game, but more photos are here.




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September 2015 - A Matter of Honor, Samurai Style

 


There is always a girl...


Homare was a beautiful country girl, whose parents' untimely death left her in her uncle's care. As war ravaged Japan, many a man was interested in her well being.


The powerful Hatamoto, Houjou Matsui, wanted her for his bride.  Her uncle, the famed sensei Akiyoshi, believed she was still too young and too naive to belong to any man.  Her heart, however, belonged to the bandit, Chikao Kagayama.  Which one of these men would overcome the others?  Which one would do the honorable thing?


Well, in September, Daniel, Barry, Joe and I found out as I hosted a game of Osprey's Ronin, with 28mm minis from North Star Miniatures.  in the process we were able to preview and play test the game and scenario I would later run quite successfully at Texas BROADSIDE! 2015.


No after-action was ever written but more photos are here.




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October 2015 - Hot Spot in Elbonia


Fright month returned with a vengeance as Rob ran a GASLIGHT zombie game the week of Texas BROADSIDE!   While attendance was light, those who played had a great time in modern Elbonia where an Elbonian gang controlled small village sees an SAS team drive in looking for gas, at the same time a Virtucon team with Dr. Evil at the helm wants to get out of Dodge.


Once the players realized that shooting made noise and noise attracted zombies, they began to scuffle rather than shoot,  There was initially some hiding in vehicles, then when the SAS and Virtucon realized the vehicles weren't an option, the SAS called for a helo EVAC.


Once the Chinook touched down the SAS survivors made a break for the chopper.  RPG in hand, a gang member thought he could take out the helo but his rocket jammed.  The SAS waited for Virtucon to board just as the RPG gunner cleared for another shot.  Fortunately for those on the Chinook, it took off before the ganger activated next and the zombies got the unlucky RPG gunner in the end.


A scuffle aboard the Chinook between the healthy and the newly zombified put a dramatic ending to a fun filled zombie night.

 

The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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November 2015 - No Game


Daniel had planned to host a scenario based around Crete's Prison Valley, using his recently designed Brigade level rules, but apparently attendance was minimal so the game didn't make.


Hopefully we'll see it on the calendar for 2016.




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December 2015 - Jungle Fever


Continuing our Christmas game tradition, Rob ran a Bolt Action game set on New Britain in December 1943 during the Battle of Cape Gloucester, known in Marine history as The Green Inferno.


The scenario was adapted from the experience of a diversionary landing at Green Beach by 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines. The landings on New Britain were unopposed and the airfield at Cape Gloucester was taken easily, but sizeable Japanese forces were elusive to find and pin down in the dense jungle. Terrain described on maps as damp flat was actually swampy dense jungle making for miserable conditions to move, survive, and fight in.


On the heels of withdrawing Marines, the Japanese moved aggressivly towards the beach and wasted little time in brining their tank up the beach to engage the approaching landing craft.  One landing craft offloaded a 37mm AT gun to engage the tank, but didn't do more than put some pin markers on it.  In return the tank immobilized the LCM.  The AT gun crew was wiped out by the sword wielding Japanese command squad, who subsequently suffered at the hands of the LCM's gunners.


An LCVP swept in to pick up surviving Marines that had reached the beach but a pair of Japanese snipers popped up and harassed the squad and managed to kill the Marine lieutenant in command.  


In the end, a half squad of Marines were all that were able to escape on the LCVP, which later recovered the crew who swam off the LCM, despite having the boat's driver being sniped at and having to evade continuous tank fire..


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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January 2016 - Out of Africa


VSF gaming, in the form of Aeronef and In Her Majesty's Name mostly, has been a regular staple of this club since the beginning.  In January I launched the first of three linked games to bring us back to our imagi-nations and alternative history setting of 1895.


Following close on the heels of the epic Battle of West Africa, fought in March 2015, elements of the British Mediterranean Aeronef Squadron, rumored to be in possession of stolen ancient Elbonian artifacts, perhaps dating back to the rule of the Pharoah Wubaqhamun himself, made a hasty exit from African skies, in an effort to reach the relative safety of British-friendlier territory.


The British commander (Stephen) was given the choice of three egress routes, Rock, Paper, and Scissors.  The other players were asked to divide their available vessels up between these three routes, so they were poised to intercept the British as a ragtag collection of "hostile" coastal patrols tasked with shadowing the British or slowing their passage.


Rob, as our resident French player, chose not to send French ships to patrol the Paper route.  That happened to be just the route Stephen selected.  Rob ended up replacing Stephen as British commander on the night, while Steve H. was there commanding both Italians and Austro-Hungarians while Kurt fielded his Turks.


In the end the British were able to sneak the ancient relics they'd stolen south, off the table, and away from Africa.  Their destination?  The perceived safety of Gibraltar.


For the night we play tested Rottenlead's new "Imperial Skies" rules, a promising update and improvement on Aeronef and designed to use all the same Brigade Model ships we all own.

 

The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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February 2016 - Trouble on the Rocks


 

In March 1895, the Conservators of the British Museum had been the first to reach the inner sanctum of the Temple of Wubakhamun, at bir Ra'ben'Hud, beatng a rival French adventuring company and slipping past the local servants of Wubakhamun and their allied Yahu tribesman.


What the British brought back with them should never have been allowed to be taken from its crypt, but the month before, a number of rival aero craft commanders were unable to stop the British from leaving Africa with their trinkets.  


February saw me host the second of our 2016 VSF games in the linked scenario arc, this time using Osprey's In Her Majesty's Name and 28mm figures largely from Reaper and North Star.  The British had brought the African relics they'd removed to the relative safety of Saint Bernard's Hospital, partially for security and partially  because the man in charge wanted to begin studying them.  The fabled Staff of Wubakhamun was of particular interest.


The Staff was actually of interest to several other parties, as four Adventuring Companies descended on the hospital and its British Colonial Infantry defenders and the Conservators of the British Museum.  After fightng through the 28mm halls and rooms of my foam core hospital, against the Prussian Assault Korps, Lord Curr's Crew, the Servants of Wubakhamun, and others, the French sponsored Family La'Strange, under the command of Daniel, were victorious, spiriting away the Staff and setting us up for the third and final chapter of this trilogy, played in April. 


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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March 2016 - Star Wars Armada


March saw Rob host a learning game of Star Wars Armada, with some of our regulars as well as a couple of new faces.  I missed this month so haven't had a chance to play, but from what I've heard everyone had a good time.


We don't have a formal after action for this game but more photos are here.




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What's Ahead?


Thanks for hanging in and reading down this far.  If you haven't blinked too many times, or closed your eyes completely, you'll now get a brief glimpse of some of what we have planned this year.


In May Rob hosts a game of Dead Man's Hand, the unique card driven western game.  It seems from the emails that have been flying around that many of our active gamers have a fair number of painted western figures, and not a few 28mm western era period buildings.  I'm looking forward to bringing out my Foundry gunfighters and two 4Ground buildings.


In June we celebrate Rob's birthday month with our annual visit to modern Elbonia.  I'm again going to risk trying a new rule set, but have found I really like the wargame rules that Osprey has been publishing.  Reading through their new Black Ops, I see a real cool game that can be used to play out conventional as well as stealth modern skirmish battles.  I'm really looking forward to playing this one.  So much so that I am going to use June to launch a three-game campaign that will continue in August and complete at Texas BROADSIDE! 2016 in October.


We're again looking to run some wargames inside, and as a public service, to the Houston Museum of Natural Science.  Last year we had great success running demonstration games of Osprey's Ronin, in front of their visiting Samural exhibit, on two separate occasions.  In late 2014 we did the same with naval wargaming for the visiting USS TEXAS exhibit.  This year we plan to tie into one of the permanent exhibits, the Hall of the Americas, and feature wargames involvng the struggles of the Plains Indians,  In the future we also want to look at the wars of the Ancient Egyptians, to give us a second annual option that can tie into another of the Museum's permanent exhibits.


The weekend of October 7-9 sees the return of Texas BROADSIDE! 2016.  :Last year we were able to donate to the Battleship Texas Foundation the greatest single sum to-date, a check for $1000.  Thanks to the generosity and hard work of our many volunteer GMs and the many wargamers who came out to play and experience the weekend on Mighty T.


This year we expect to do even better, with the return of our vendor, more promised air conditioned gaming space, and further incentives to our volunteer GMs.  So please mark your calendars now and plan to attend our sixth annual USS TEXAS based wargaming event,


The calendar is still open for many of the other months this year, so if you have the desire to host your favorite multiplayer wargame, historic or otherwise, please contact me and we'll get your game on our calendar.


Thanks again for reading to the end, I hope to see many of you in the year to come, and until next year's review, always keep at least one eye open in a gun fight, preferably the eye you use to sight down the barrel.

The Fifth Year in Review

Posted by Andy on July 16, 2015 at 1:55 AM Comments comments (0)

Here I sit with some rare free time on my hands, in between a three week summer family vacation and the next two weeks of business travel.


(At least that's when I first started this.  Now, as I write the last sentence and proofread this article, it has been five weeks since I began this piece.  Wow!!...)


Thinking about annual events like family summer vacatiions, and my company's international user's conference I'm attending next week, it strikes me that I'm a little overdue for another annual event - the crafting of another year-in-review for our illustrious, tight knit, and evolving wargame club.


This is, of course, not just any yearly recap.  It's a recap for our club's fifth year.  From humble beginnings in the back room of Asgard, to the darkened panelled retreat that was the Stag's Head's Oak Room - we now, five years on, find ourselves in new wargaming quarters - the lighter, more upscale, and earlier-closing Black Labrador Pub.  


So what games did we play this year, between March 2014 and April 2015 inclusive?  Here's a look back, for those of you who are curious, and revel in the annual recap.


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April 2014 - Violent Encounter in the Atlantic - Aeronef/Aquanef


Retold from the perspective of a lost chapter, now rediscovered, from Jules Verne's "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea", the battle between British and French Aeronef and Aquanef forces was played out in April last year.  In commemoration of our fourth birthday as a club.


I hosted this experimental game, using Wessex Games' as yet unpublished Aquanef rules, together with a number of scratch built Victorian era submersibles, including a model of Nautilus herself.


The situation was a follow on to the previous downing and subsequent sinking of the RMS MAJESTIC, mid-Atlantic, and saw the British discover the remains of MAJESTIC before French forces were able to reach her.  Giving Britain that much of the edge in the European war that was certain to come.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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May 2014 - March 1795 - The Battle of Cape Noli


May would have seen John Terry hosting the Battle of Cape Noli, a Napoleonic era sea battle between the British and French, off the coast of Genoa.


Unfortunately, and tragically, the world lost John way too early.  We take this opportunity to honor the memory of our wargaming colleague and friend, John, and wish his surviving wife and family all the best.




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June 2014 - HUNG Out to Drive in Elbonia - Modified AK-47


Chaos reigned supreme again, in modern strife torn Elbonia, as Rob brought us modified AK-47 skirmish, for this, our annual tribute to the birthday of Elbonian President Robert Wubaqi.


Between the Elbonian National Guard protecting Route 1, UN forces protecting a World Food Programme humanitarian delivery to nearby Uonga, elements of the Hollywood animal protection movement, PETARD, seeking to protect Elbonian wildlife, and bikers from the Haitian Underground (HUNG), striving to make a "deal" in the area, all the wargaming particpants had a great time.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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July 2014 - Point of No Return - X-Wing


In July we brought out one of our favorite quick and easy games to play.  Rob hosted X-Wing and we played the first scenario in the CR90 Corvette campaign, using Rob's recently acquired model.


Barry, Joe, Andy, and Dan took the Imperials, whose mission was to cripple the corvette, while Andrew and Rob divided up the corvette's fore/aft section and managed its systems.


In the end, it was a close-run thing, but the corvette managed to survive till the game ended without suffering crippling damage, leading to a Rebel victory.


We also enjoyed bottles of Saint Arnold Bishop's Barrel #7


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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August 2014 - Recollections and Regrets - Convoy


No less than seven wargaming sessions, played intermittently over the span of four years, between June 10th, 2010 and August 25th, 2014. is ALL it took to complete our recreation of British convoy HG-84. :)


HG-84 took ten actual days to go from Gibraltar to Liverpool, and certainly suffered some loss to the u-boats of wolfpack Endrass.  Our replay using 1:6000 scale minis and Mal Wright's Convoy tactical rules, with convoy events generated using Mal's Deadly Waters supplement, saw many more merchants sunk.


The disparity between history and our simulation, in terms of convoy losses, can largely be attributed to bad luck on the event generation, misinterpretations of the rules regarding how many u-boats should be thrown at a convoy at once, and the players learning the system and the tactics of WWII undersea warfare.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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September 2014 - Stake Through the Heart - CY6! Jet Age


Brian returned us to the skies over Asia, with a return to Check You 6! : Jet Age.


The Pakistani attempt to take control of the disputed Kashmir region, Operation Grand Slam, began with an attack by 12th Division (Infantry) into the Chamb sector.  In danger of losing the strategic position, which would isolate southwest Kashmir, the Indian Army made a desperate request for air support.  Six hours later, and only after approval by the Indian Ministry of Defense, the first fighters were on their way to attack Pakistani positions in the failing light of the day.


Lasting only three turns, the game was over so fast there was never a blog report written or photos taken.  The rapid demise of the Indians saw to that.




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October 2014 - World War Z: Elbonia - Ambush Z


October has become our traditional month to try something with zombies in it.  The year before it had been the rather simple Zombies board game.  In October 2014, trying to capitialize on the wealth of modern US infantry I had, and native African regular and irregular troops, I decided to acquire zombie figures from Rebel minis and paint them up.


We tried a return to Force on Force (aka Ambush Alley, aka Ambush Z) to play out a scene from the popular movie of the time, World War Z.  In a city in Elbonia, overrun by zombies, could US forces defend the fortified wall against an ever growing zombie horde?  Could the "uninfected" locals make it to safety behind said wall?  Would the wall's defenders let them in?


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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November 2014 - Wings Over Europe - Wings of War


November has become another month of tradition in these parts.  Given Veteran's Day (aka Remembrance Day, aka Armistice Day), we often turn to another simple game to setup and play, Wings of War.


Brian, Chris, Stephen, and I were in attendance and we each dropped down a pair of planes from my collection and flew and fought until there was a clear winning side.


Brian and I flew the Germans while Chris and Stephen flew the Allies. In the end, the Germans held the field, and pretty handidly won the battle, with the loss or departure of all the Allied planes, and no loss (but plenty of damage) to the Germans.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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December 2014 - Elsenborn Ridge - Battlegroup


Christmas time means it's also Battle of the Bulge time.  Last year I hosted the game and decided to use a new set of rules, Battlegroup (Battlegroup Kursk, Battlegroup Overlord, etc), published by the Plastic Soldier Company, and written by Iron Fist (Warwick Kinrade).


We used Battlefront 15mm figures in this platoon/company level game, featuring my snowy ridge terrain with a town below.  American forces were dug in on the ridge and German Fallschirmjager and armor attempted to storm the ridge.


A number of lessons were painfully learned and the Axis forces never came close, but since the Christmas ale and holiday cheer was flowing freely, no one really minded. :D


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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January 2015 - Gentlemen, Start Your Engines!


In January, seven gamers turned out to help Brian test a new set of auto racing rules he is writing for Two Hour Wargames.


The game uses your standard Hot Wheel scale cars and a virtual track mechanism, meaning the cars don't move around a physical track, but instead, the cars change position relative to each other.


Brian learned much about his design, about teaching rules to new players, and about the trials and tribulations of playtesting a design in progress.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




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February 2015 - South France, 1944 - Brigadier General Commands


Daniel has run some great and very original wargames in the past, always based on a historical situation.  This past February was no exception, when he brought out for the first time his 1:285 scale WWII microarmor and taught us all the rules he's been working on, Brigadier General Commands.


Set in the south of France, following the Dragoon assault,  it featured the Allied armies (US and French) attacking towards a major highway, with the aim of cutting a major line of German communication and transit.


Daniel has continued working on the rules, taking into account what he has learned from this and other playtests.  We look forward to continuing the battle in the future.


More photos are here.




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March 2015 - A Harrowing Adventure - Aeronef

 

March saw our fifth birthday celebrated with beer, good company, and our favorite VSF wargame, Aeronef!!


With tensions escalating between Britain and France, over the earlier Majestic Incident, conflict in the colonial regions of the world, where territorial tensions are high at the best of times, led to a head to head battle between British and French Aeronef fleets over the deserts of French West Africa.


Italian, Austro-Hungarian, and Turkish fleets were also in evidence in the region, each with its own agenda, as it was observed that valuable landmarks were in the area, including an ancient temple to Wubakhamun and an R-matter extraction complex.


The full blog post is on the way and more photos are here.




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What's Coming in the Next Few Months?


Since March we've experienced a move to a new location, with the closing of Stag's Head.  The Black :Labrador brings us some new challenges, but it remains a centrally located place with good food and beer and plenty of well-lit space.


April saw Ed entertain us with another OGRE game.  May the 4th brought us another chapter in the CR90 X-Wing campaign.  In June we celebrated President Wubaqi's birthday in style along the Elbonian-Garlamistani border.  For July Brian returned us to the racetrack for another playtest of his game design.  Finally, August saw us bring out Sails of Glory and recreate a Napoleonic engagement along the south coast of Guadeloupe.


Coming up the rest of this year we have my Ronin game, for up to six players, which I'm running at BROADSIDE! but plan to playtest this month.  In October we are destined to return to a zombie theme, but no one has yet volunteered to run the game.  November, likewise, should bring us another bout of Wings of War.  Perhaps this year I'll get around to painting my three metal Gotha bombers.  To round out the year, on Monday, December 7th, Rob brings us a Pacific jungle romp with Bolt Action, taking us away from our seasonal love for the Ardennes.


We’ve also got the following wargame conventions to look forward to:


Texas BROADSIDE! 2015, USS TEXAS, October 9-11, 2015

MillenniumCon 18, Round Rock, November 6-8, 2015


That about wraps it up for another year,  See you all around the game table and, remember, keep it simple, fast, and fun!

The Fourth Year Passes in Review

Posted by Andy on July 25, 2014 at 6:25 PM Comments comments (2)

TEN-HUT!!!!


Here we are, then, another year in the life of Houston Beer and Pretzel Wargaming. While my annual recap may be real late this year, at least it’s not “never”.

 

We’ve had a good wargaming year, only missing one game night as a club (although those who attended that night still enjoyed each other’s company and the food and beverage on offer). We also enjoyed no less than four different GMs hosting games (five were it not for Houston public transportation). As always, a huge thanks to Rob, Brian, and Chris for helping me out by sharing in the GM load.

 

Unfortunately, we weren’t as good, collectively, at posting after-action reports for our games (and I'm the biggest culprit), but I would have to say that the ones that did get posted make for pretty fun reading. We also enjoyed some cracking photos again this year, thanks to our official but unofficial club photographer, Andrew.

 

A few other numbers for you to think about.


4 – The number of years we’ve been meeting.

63 – The number of members currently registered on this site.

88 – The number of blog posts, including this one.

128 – The number of megabytes of photos, blogs, and other goodness on the site.

 

Here is it then, the recap of the year that was, April 2013 to March of 2014.

 


April 2013 - Dual of Iron – Aeronef – by Andy


We kicked off our fourth year in style, returning to our roots, by way of Aeronef. This time by throwing in Wessex Games’ rules for Land Ironclads, using scratch built steam driven ground machines that posed the main forces of an enraged America, landing on the Austro-Hungarian Caribbean island of Neu Wien, in enforcement of the Monroe Doctrine.


Alas, Admiral Cussler’s supporting Amercian Aeronef fleet failed to arrive overhead in support of the US invasion force, leaving the Austrian land defenses and Aeronef fleet and their English allies able to keep the Americans and nearby French Aeronef forces at bay.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.

 



May 2013 - Six Day War in the Air - CY6! Jet Age – by Rob


Rob brought us back to familiar skies as we jetted across the Sinai for some more Six Day War action. This time eight Israeli jets were sent in on a supposed milk run, against Egyptian ground targets, only to learn the hard way that the MIG defenders weren’t messing around.


Israeli planes fell early and often, to Egyptian pilots and AAA. The early demise of ace Israeli pilot Giora, to a head-on shot by a green Egyptian, was enough to shake everyone up. The lopsided victory point results (an Egyptian landslide) coupled with Andrew’s first foray as our star photographer, made for one of our best and most memorable wargame outings.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.




June 2013 - The Great Royal Elbonian Lion Hunt – Force on Force – by Andy


Then came June, hot, hot June. Rob’s birthday month and what has become our second annual theme night of the year. It was our return to Elbonia and the lands, women, and wild life of General President Robert Wubaqi.


This time President Wubaqi hosted an invitation-only lion safari, in the protected confines of his own private reserve. You can better believe it wasn’t just lions being hunted that day, as motorcycles, jeeps, and armored cars raced across the desert in pursuit of mane and each other, and helicopters whirled overhead. The crazed lions weren’t defenseless, mauling a few hunters in the process.


We were again treated to the fantastic photographic work of Andrew and those of us who were there still recount with fondness the whole over-the-top, tongue-in-cheek, absurdity of the whole affair.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.

 



July 2013 - Bag the East Front Hun – Bag the Hun – by Brian


July brought with it more heat and, at Stag’s Head, more air-to-air action, as we turned our attention to the skies of the East Front in WWII. Without the benefits of a detailed after-action post, I’ll let some of our photographs from that night do the talking.


More photos are here.


 


 



August 2013 - Hill 400 – Bolt Action – by Andy


Bolt Action has grown in popularity, replacing Flames of War in my own wargaming stable when it comes to WWII infantry and tank action. In August I ran my Hill 400 (Bergstein) semi-historic scenario, to playtest it for October’s Texas BROADSIDE! I also ran this scenario at Heat of Battle VII.


It featured the actions of elements of the 2nd Ranger Battalion, famous for its storming of Pointe du Hoc, but this time they were storming up Hill 400 in the Hurtgen Forest. Specifically, the Rangers were ordered to take a hill that overlooked the Ruhr valley and, from the hill’s vantage point, would have afforded US forces a view of the German build up for Wacht am Rhein.


We had a great time with the scenario and the challenges of charging up a hill against well dug in defenders, and this led to several tweaks to the scenario that were later put to good use in replaying this game two more times.


More photos are here.

 


 




September 2013 - Guadalcanal Jungle Patrol – Bolt Action – by Rob


In September we returned to Bolt Action, but this time Rob took us to the jungles of Guadalcanal, as his reinforced US marine patrol ran up against a relatively equal number of Japanese soldiers.


Again, we were playtesting this scenario for use at Texas BROADSIDE! and Rob’s unique use of “moving” terrain and “displacing” infantry made it suspenseful and hard to make plans in the dense and unforgiving jungles. A good simulation of the unknown and the fog of jungle warfare.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.

 



October 2013 - Zombies!! - by Rob


In a nod to the season and a departure from the seriousness of gritty warfare, we turned to the latest craze, and a fitting one for October, the zombie apocalypse.


Keeping it light and easy, Rob had recently invested in the Zombies!! board/miniature game and brought that along. Thus, we were able to get a couple of games in and enjoy a more relaxed, humorous, or was that humerus, evening.


More photos are here.


 



 



November 2013 - Holding Pointe du Hoc – IABSM – by Chris


Second in our “guest” GMs for the year, and ironically the second outing of the year for the boys from the 2nd Ranger Battalion, Chris brought in his own 15mm WWII infantry forces and we used Two Fat Lardies’ I Ain’t Been Shot Mum to simulate the US defense of Pointe du Hoc, from a determined counterattack launched by nearby German forces. Again, we’ll let the pictures do the telling, but I generally recall that in this and other playing’s of Chris’ scenario it seemed the Germans always had the tougher time of it.


More photos are here.

 







December 2013 - Grieving Over Blown Bridges – Bolt Action – by Andy


Another in our theme nights, and our third session of Bolt Action in the year, we enjoyed a festive holiday party playing yet another engagement set in the snows of Belgium during the Battle of the Bulge.


This time the scenario was set during that iconic scene in The Battle of the Bulge, when Skorzeny’s disguised commandos are caught out near a bridge, and a firefight with US armored troops and Peiper’s tanks ensues.


The results were predictable as the German Panthers made for the far table edge, to keep the offensive rolling, while the Americans just tried to survive and kill what they could of the German menace.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.

 


 

January 2014 - Crisis in the Kashmir – CY6! Jet Age - by Brian


For January, the club took part in the India-Pakistan War of 1965, thanks to the Crisis in Kashmir scenario book for CY6 Jet age, and Brian’s jets.


The scenario was entitled, “Breaking the Sabre,” and recreated a fighter sweep by Folland Gnats of the Indian Air Force (IAF) against missile-carrying F-86 Sabres and F-104 Starfighters of the Pakistani Air Force (PAF).


The game turned into a twisting fur ball almost immediately, and any idea of aircraft staying in pairs for maneuver went right out the window. Even though the PAF Sabres had Sidewinder missiles, none were fired during the game.


The final score was close, 14 IAF victory points to 13 PAF victory points.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.

 


 

February 2014 - Sails of Glory – by Andy


Kickstarter has sucked many of my funds away over the last few years. Most of my investments have been great ones, but occasionally I’ve gotten burned. Sails of Glory, designed and published by the guys who brought us Wings of Glory and Wings of War, is one of my most successful Kickstarter investments.


We brought this system out and fought a large battle between six British and seven French ships. The scenario itself was just a line up, sail close, and fire type of affair, and we were bold in using the more advanced rules, which we didn’t find all too difficult.


Everyone had a great time learning the rules and bringing each other to battle and we’ll surely see this one on the table again in 2014-2015.


The full blog post is here and more photos are here.



 

 

March 2014 – No Game


Unfortunately, we had several of the regular guys show up to play in March but our GM was stuck struggling with Houston public transportation. We look forward to John’s wind and sail wargame and will find a way to reschedule it for later this year or early next year.


Sometimes we have a GM but not enough players and occasionally we have enough players but no GM. Life happens and our hobby sometimes suffers for it.

 


What’s Ahead?


We’re already a quarter of the way into our 5th year, having come back to VSF (Aeronef) and Elbonia (modified AK-47) for two theme nights. Unfortunately, we’ve also managed to strike out one month, but still had some guys at the pub to share some food and drink and great discussion.


Coming up in the next few months we have X-Wing this month (this coming Monday in fact), a long-awaited return to the Atlantic and the painfully slow progress of British convoy HG-84 (using Mal Wright’s Convoy tactical rules), and in October we’ll return to an undead theme, with Force on Force and its variant Ambush Z. I’ll also return as GM in December with another multiplayer Bolt Action game set in 1944, this time exploring the action along Elsenborn ridge.


September and November remain unclaimed, so if you want to be a guest GM, why not step up for one of those months, or early 2015?


We’ve also got the following wargame conventions to look forward to:


Heat of Battle VIII, NOLA, August 8-10, 2014

Texas BROADSIDE! 2014, USS TEXAS, October 10-12, 2014

MillenniumCon 17, Round Rock, November 7-9, 2014


That’s it for this year. Happy wargaming and beer enjoying, boys.


AT-EASE, GENTLEMEN!!

 

Third Time's the Charm

Posted by Andy on May 17, 2013 at 1:00 AM Comments comments (1)

That's right, all you wargamers and beer aficionados out there, its our third annual year-in-review. We've recently celebrated the third anniversary of what Rob first conceived of three years ago, back when we started meeting occasionally in Asgard's back room, to drink beer and play a multiplayer, simple, fast, and fun wargame, and have a good laugh or three while doing it.


Some of our 2012/2013 gaming has been light hearted, some has been more serious. We've explored the what-ifs of managing a modern urban and industrial crisis, the frozen fjords of WWII Norway, tongue-firmly-in-cheek modern war-torn Africa, and a fair bit of far future science fiction gaming as well, plus a whole lot more.


So here it is, a brief recap of what we played over the last 12 months, with links to the full after-action reports and photos if you are interested in seeing more.


April 2012 - We're Not in Good Shape Anymore


Stephen provided us a rare treat back in April.  A chance to use a model of a real Texas port and surrounding industrial and residential areas, to run through the kinds of exercises real emergency management and homeland security officials run through.  Stephen created some threats and disasters, provided the players (who had each assumed  typical roles) limited intelligence and an evolving situation, and watched with glee as we muddled and mangled our way through, unwittingly, in trying to deal with the challenges and always insufficient resources and information at hand.  Not to mention the politicing and finger pointing.  All good fun.




The full blog post is here and more photos are here.


May 2012 - First Battle of Narvik


In May Daniel treated us to an operational recreation of the first battle of Narvik, when the British Admiralty sent a destroyer flotilla and small invasion force to recapture Narvik.  Without benefit of having read up on the real battle, those of us commanding the British ships weren't fully informed as to what to expect.  A German U-Boat and a mix of international shipping later, not to mention stronger German naval forces than expected, didn't result in too much success for us Brits.  Still, quite a bit of German shipping was hit and sunk or damaged in Narvik's harbor.




The full blog post is here and more photos are here.


June 2012 - Return to Elbonia


In June I brought the group back to fictitious modern-day west Africa, with Force on Force, where a very public meeting in the cosatal town of  Kamsar, between Elbonian President Wubaqi and officials from B'Eano and the US engineering firm Bellihurton, quickly led to bloodshed.  Quick thinking by Daniel Wubaqi, son of the President and commander of the Elbonian Army unit securing the coastal town of Kamsar, saved the day, in fiery and explosive fashion.  Needless to say new enemies and new friends were made in the streets of this Elbonian town.  We'll continue the tradition of celebratng Rob's birthday every June with an ongoing story arc in his adopted "home country".




The full blog post is here and here and more photos are here.


July 2012 - WWII Wings Over The Desert

 

Eagles flew over the sand in Check Your Six! action, hosted by Rob and Sandy, but no after-action report was ever filed, funny enough. Shame on you Robert!.




More photos can be found here.


August 2012 - They Have Another Plan


Having gone to Millenniumcon in the Fall of 2011, Rob came back with a new passion, and a lighter wallet.  Battlestar Galactica.  With he and Sandy launching a new "subsidiary" (Space Junk), what better way to advertize their new products than by running a game for a bunch of friends.  I'm personally sorry I missed this one, but it looked and sounded like a lot of fun,  While Galactica bit the big fiery dust ball in space, that gorgeous Commander Cain and her Pegasus are still out there...and so are the Cylons... 




The full blog post is here and more photos are here.


September 2012 - No Game


While Labor Day and other obstacles prevented us from gaming in September, our second annual convention, Texas BROADSIDE! 2012, did take place over a three day period aboard USS TEXAS in early October, and it was very successful!




More photos of the convention are here.


October 2012 - See What You Can Do, R2


Rob returned us to a science fiction theme when he brought out another recently acquired game, the new Star Wars space combat miniature game.  Simple, fast, and fun pretty much sums this one up and it makes another great Beer and Pretzels style game.  Rob and a couple of others spent the evening playing through two pretty basic games, but in so doing learned the rules well which paved the way for what happened in January...




The full blog post is here.


November 2012 - HG-84 Keeps Sailing (and Sinking)


Begun by me way back in May 2010, the saga of  British convoy HG-84, which historically sailed from Gibraltar to Liverpool way back in May 1942, has been an ongoing campaign, featuring six sessions now over the last few years as the convoy makes its way across the eastern Atlantic.  Episode six of this adventure was held this past November, using a slightly tweaked version of Mal Wright's Convoy tactical rules.  The u-boats of wolf pack Endrass continued to plague the convoy, as they sent MV EMPIRE CONRAD to the bottom and a sailing accident claimed the life of MV SHETLAND too.




The full blog post is here and more photos are here.


December 2012 - Buchholz Station


Another recurrng theme during the year is to hold a winter battle in... wait for it... winter!  That theme was revisited in December as we continued to move through the early hours and days of the Battle of the Bulge.  This year I hosted a recreation of the action around Buchholz Station, when German volksgrenadiers unexpectedly encountered some breakfast eating GIs and all hell broke loose.  This action seemed to center around killing or protecting a single M3 halftrack.  We used the increasingly popular Bolt Action rules to play this game, in 28mm, and the whole Christmas party was very well attended.




The full blog post is here and more photos are here.


January 2013 - Deposit Confirmed


In January Rob brought us back to a galaxy far far away.  Apparently short on Imperial Credits, Boba Fett was on a mission to deliver valuable intelligence to Imperial authorities in exchange for a huge payout.  In this Star Wars miniatures battle, Boba chose the oddest of places to make this transaction, the edge ot a remote asteroid field.  Needless to say, asteroids and TIE fighters don't really mix, however in this case apparently the Force was truly with the Dark Side as the Imperial players well and truly bested the Rebels.  No doubt we'll see plenty more Star Wars action in 2013, now that a certain Correlion transport, TIE interceptors, and TIE bombers have been released as new toys.




The full blog post is here and more photos are here.


February 2013 - Operation Menace


Daniel brought us back to the taffeta with a recreation of the 1940 battle for Dakar.  Using his own rules to guide us, we were presented with a British force of warships and support ships with orders to call for and then accept the surrender of the French fleet in the North African port of Dakar.  A rather proud French commander was going to have none of it.  With some British envoys held prisoner and the subsequent Brtish reprisal air strikes on the harbor only serving to embolden the French, the game pretty much followed historic lines with the British being unsuccessful in being able to carry out their orders and, in the end, sailing away pretty much unsatisfied.




The full blog post is here and more photos are here.


March 2013 - Rome is Not Burning


We followed a trip to WWII Africa in February with a visit to Rome in the far future in March.  Ogre miniatures is a system we visited in the first few months of our club's existence, so revisitng the system was long overdue.   This time it was Ed, who in his debut as club GM ran a futuristic battle, of ogreish proportions, which saw the Vatican Guard in action, defending the Eternal City against Combine aggresion.  After much carnage and a little bit of glory, the game was called a Pan European victory, for despite an absence of white smoke from the Vatican chimney, it was clear that Rome was safe for yet another day.  




The full blog post is here and more photos are here.


What's On The Horizon?


So there you have it.  Another year in the proverbial can, with new faces as well as old.  What do we have to look forward to?  Here is what's coming up in the next few months...

 

  • This month Rob brings us back to the Sinai, to pick up where we left off in some desert jet action with Check Your Six!: Jet Age.
  • In June we celebrate Rob's birthday with a return to Wubaqi's Africa.  A little Force on Force that will get the lion's share of attention at Stag's Head.
  • In July Brian will return, after a year's absence as a GM, to run our first Bag the Hun game, as we return to the air for some East Front dogfight action.
  • In August HG-84 will return for episode seven.  Maybe the convoy will get lucky this time, but I kind of doubt it...
  • In September, rather than book the space for the end of the month, I have reserved the Oak Room for September 16th, the eve or Operation Market-Garden.  I'll be hosting a recreation of the fight for the Arnhem bridge, using Flames of War.
  • The weekend of October 4-6 sees us running Texas BROADSIDE! 2013.  I invite you all to consider serving as a GM or attending as a gamer, to support our ongoing annual fund raising efforts, to help preserve Mighty T.  We also have a late October game night planned but currently do not have a particular game scheduled.
  • In November we have an open game night as well, with no particular game planned as of yet.
  • To wrap up the year, we'll return to Belgium and I'll use Bolt Action to recreate the work of Skorzeny's GI disguised commandos in the Battle of the Bulge.
Where you see an open game night on our calender, please consider stepping up and running a game.  You know what we are all about.  It's your call when it comes to what game you want to run, so long as it follows out three basic tenets.  So remember, always try and keep it:



Simple!

Fast!

and Fun!

Happy 2nd Birthday HB&P!! (2011/2012)

Posted by Andy on April 22, 2012 at 11:25 PM Comments comments (0)

With April comes showers (we've sure seen our fair share), fools (unfortunately I've seen a few of them show up from time to time as well) and...wait for it...another complete year in the wargaming, beer drinking, simple, fast, and fun life of our little group!!

So here, to commemorate the moment, on the eve of Joe's and Stephen's little adventure simulating the fighting of a different kind of life threatening encounter, I bring you our annual summary of all things beer and wargaming, since this time last year!

April 2011

April was a treat with two, not one, but two meetings! First Rob arranged a special get together at the Head to run a second playtest of missions from CY6! Jet Age's new book, Star & Pyramid. The featured Six Day War battle witnessed the Israeli Air Force running a strike against the Egyptian airfield at Al Thamada. Led by the astute Israeli pilot Dan Sever, the Israeli's pulled out a 17-4 win, downing several Egyptians and hitting the airfield for the loss of only one Israeli plane. More details here.

Also in April I announced my initial plan to run our first annual wargame event/convention in Houston. Texas BROADSIDE 2011! At that stage in its development it was just an idea and, as we'll see later in this look back, it turned out pretty well for a first effort.

April saw a second game event with Chris K. successfully running his Civil War gunboat action. The naval battle of Fort Pillow (the engagement at Plum Point Bend) saw Barry and I minding our own business as able Union sailors, engaging in a little mortar practice along the river. When along came those scallywag Jablonski boys with their overamped paddleweelers and done took us by s'prise!! They prooved that underhanded sailing and then running off as they'd done did could get the better of us Yanks. Just remember, ya'll, twas the North that won the War!! More details here.

May

In May, Rob brought us back over the sands of the Sinai for yet another Jet Age playtest. This time Egyptian MIG-21s were on the hunt for IDF ground targets. A couple of Israeli Mirages and some AAA sites were the only defense for the IDF grunts. I managed to draw first blood by downing one of Barry's MIGs but he returned the favor late in the game. The rest of the details can be found here but the end result was a big win for the Egyptians who hit their targets and, while loosing a couple of planes, shot down a few Israelis as well.

May was another double whammy month as I ran another chapter in the journey of Eastern Atlantic convoy HG-84. Using Mal Wright's rules we gathered to see the GARDENIA investigate, damage, and then loose beneath the waves an Italian sub (the LEONARDO DA VINCI) that had been detected at range using HF/DF. Two days later, after several warnings from the Admiralty of a growing u-boat threat in the convoy's path, HG-84 encountered a lone u-boat (U-178 ) and sustained the loss of the merchants THURSO, KITCHENER, and EMPIRE MOON. A much more detailed log report can be found here.

June

On June 23rd I hosted my first game of Osprey's Force on Force. Four players fought it out with my 15mm modern US infantry and insurgents over a 3' x 3' area of North African buildings, set to simulate the narrow streets of Fallujah.

The US side struggled to make it across this stretch of town and reach their objectives as we all struggled to learn the rules together. It was truly an education, both in the deadliness of modern warfare and the intricacies of the rules. We came away with many examples of where we got some rules wrong and I'll be hosting another small game of this before my big Force on Force Wubaqi battle in June. Read more about those few blocks of hell here.

July

In July, Brian led us in a game of Charlie Don’t Surf from TooFat Lardies. The scenario was a simple one, and taken straight from the Surf’s Up scenario book. A company of US troops were under orders to enter a village, search for food and weapons caches and destroy any enemy forces found. However, as so often happens in TooFat Lardies rules (and real life), while the orders were simple their execution was anything but.

Compounded early by a downed US helicopter, the American mission changed rapidly from a search and destroy to a failed rescue operation on the choppers crew, as the VC had other ideas. Check out the rumble in the jungle here.

August

Brian hosted in back to back months by returning in August to run a unique playtest of his Kiss Me Hardy game for Texas BROADSIDE! 2011. Set during the War of 1812, a small US force of ships is searching through the fog banks for the infamous Jamaica Convoy. What it finds is a mixture of swirling nothingness, valuable merchants, and a number of British warships in escort. The game was really a compeition between the American captains to plunder more from the convoy than their compatriots could.

Brian received some very valuable feedback from the playtest and adjusted his event the following month on the TEXAS accordingly, from what I heard all for the best. To learn more about why a stern chase can be a long and tedious chase, look here.

September

My vision of a wargame convention in Houston finally saw fruition with the successful completion of Texas BROADSIDE! 2011, aboard our very own battlewagon, USS TEXAS (BB-35). I believe we were able to meet the four main goals I had at the beginning of this project:

  • Educate the visiting public in military history, using wargaming as an interactive medium.
  • Entertain local and regional wargamers by enabling them to play in a unique, original, and historically fitting environment.
  • Grow the historical wargaming hobby in Houston.
  • Raise interest, attention, and funds to contribute, albeit modestly, to the ongoing maintenance and restoration of TEXAS.

We enjoyed the company of 50+ gamers aboard ship, some who dared the heat to play and sleep aboard overnight, and managed to contribute over $1000 to the TEXAS through ticket sales and auctioning off of Mal Wright's painting, "Into the Storm".

More details can be found here.

October

Unfortunately, no event was run in October, as I was away and Rob had to cancel his planned G.A.S.L.I.G.H.T. game at the last minute.

November

Likewise, we skipped the November meeting as it fell on Thanksgiving.

December

The paucity of gaming over October and November apparently was good for club attendance as when we returned to action on December 19th, for our commemoration of the Battle of the Bulge, we had the largest turn out of gamers yet, with nine guys stopping by to play or observe.

On offer was a recreation of the Battle of Lanzerath Ridge, using 2nd Edition Flames of War rules, with models provided by Rob and I. A reinforced US I&R platoon tried to slow down first some Fallschirmjaeger and then the vaunted SS as they tried to push north across the ridge towards Bucholtz Station. The action was tense and came to a conclusion with the SS tanks nearing their objective but being challenged by a few remaining Shermans. Had the game played out to completion it was pretty clear that the Germans had a victory at hand. Check out the details here.

January

In addition to seeing in the new year with a change from 4th Thursdays of the month to 4th Mondays of the month, the year-to-year roll over proved a good time for building the membership of our group as the core group of gamers began to increase with new faces appearing from month to month. Two of those new guys were Stephen and Joe and they combined to give us a different flavor of WWII naval gaming in the new year, with their Axis & Alllies Naval Miniatures version of the Battle of Calabria.

The haphazard Italian formations did the best they could to close on the British, but given the parallel battle lines it proved a bit of a challenge to catch the Limeys. In the end the Italians lost 12 vessels to the British loss of 15, a bloody affair. Not least of which lost was the HMS WARSPITE, riddled by no less than five Italian torpedoes. Check out the full report here.

February

Our friend Phong returned for a visit and with Rob's help they hosted a Vietnam Wild Weasel mission for CY6! Jet Age as a special event at the Head. F-105 Thuds armed with Shrikes and bombs ingressed low with a pair of Iron Hand Phantoms. Another pair of Phantoms flew MigCAP. Their attacks against the SAM sites were less than effective, as was the return missile fire from the ground. In the end, AAA fire and the actions of three MiG-17s and a MiG-21 brought down one Thud and one Phantom before the rest escaped the battle area. Jet over here to get the whole story.

Our normal meeting the following week brought convoy HG-84 back to the waters of the Atlantic. Mid way along its northbound journey between Gibraltar and Liverpool, the stillness of the night of June 14th, 1942 was shattered by the attack of no less than four u-boats. U-437 commanded by Kapitan John began the action rather ineffectually, but did manage later to sink Cdr Walker in HMS STORK. U-575 under Kapitan Stephen joined the fray, sinking SS EGYPTIAN before being driven below and damaged to a point where the boat later had to be returned to Brest for repair. U-134 with Kapitan Eric at the helm then arrived on the scene and was rewarded with the sinking of the lone tanker in the convoy, the Norwegian vessel SLEMDAL. Finally, U-552 under Kapitan Chris arrived last but found himself woefully out of position to harm the convoy further, so continued shadowing the convoy and reporting its position to BdU. Sail here to scope out even more details.

March

Finally, this review of our second year of existence comes around to the happenings of just last month. Having witnessed a couple of very well attended game nights since the end of last year, I had prepared, with Rob's input, quite the exciting multiplayer adventure in the Victorian era skies over the Caribbean. Using our house modifications to Wessex Games' Aeronef rules, the adentures of the growing Austro-Hungarian presence in the Caribbean played out. In this little adventure HRH Prince George of Britain was paying the Austro-Hungarian island of New Vienna a diplomatic visit, escorted by British Aero forces, while the US fleet observed from a far and civilian traffic, including the White Star liner RMS MAJESTIC, plied the air currents. So float on over here to learn more.

What's Next

With that wrapping up our summary of the last 12 months of gaming, what are some of the things we can look forward to in the next 12 months?

  • May brings us Daniel's recreation of the First Battle of Narvik, one week earlier than usual to avoid Memorial Day Monday. Daniel will be teaching us his own rules.
  • June is Rob's birthday and thus the beginnings of our new tradition of celebrating it with a return to the mayhem that is modern Elbonian Africa, using Force on Force this time.
  • July, August, and September remain currently unscheduled, but are open for playtesting games in preparation for Heat of Battle VI (August 12-14) or Texas BROADSIDE! 2012.
  • Which brings us to Texas BROADSIDE! 2012, now scheduled aboard the USS TEXAS for the weekend of October 6/7. It is early times for the planning of this event but we anticipate broadening its scope, by opening it up to all WWII wargaming (land, sea, and air) and also lengthening it to include Friday, Oct. 5th.

All exciting stuff and all destined to make the third year for this club as exciting as the previous two. Hope you can join us!!

 

A Year in Review

Posted by Andy on April 19, 2011 at 12:40 AM Comments comments (3)

While Rob wraps up our special April 2011 bonus meeting, slinging Egyptians and Israelis against each other over the desert (an evening of CY6! Jet Age playtesting I'm sorry I missed), I sit here in a California hotel room mulling over the first year of our proud little beer drinking, war gaming, fast playing life. Realizing that in March we celebrated our first "birthday".

In the interests of a little recap of the year, here is what we managed to play...

March 11, 2010 saw our inaugural meeting at Asgard on the second Tuesday of that month playing a massive game of Aeronef, jointly hosted by Rob and Sandy, in the great battle over the German/Austro-Hungarian anchorage of Pearl Hafen.

At our April 2010 meeting Rob brought us his first game of modern missile boats in Lights Out off Baltim. The Israelis took the brunt of the damage as their missiles were unnaturally unlucky.

In May I hosted a grand experiment by mixing Aeronef and OGRE, As the centuries long conflict over the Caribbean continued, with the armored might of the late 21st century at hand, a sudden time/space anomaly (those damn Victorian Age Germans again) results in the sudden appearance of an Aeronef battleship...

In June I introduced the ongoing adventures of HG 84 using Mal Wright's Convoy Deadly Waters submarine warfare rules. This convoy set off from Gibraltar to Liverpool and gradually we are going to play out its event driven journey as it travels for 10 days and nights on its fateful route.

In July Phong ran Victor Charlie, a Vietnam skirmish game using his own rules. Budweiser and Saigon beer added to the atmosphere and all enjoyed the full featured but easy to play rules. The VC forces won a victory despite the US scoring mucho VP. Their downfall... leaving too many bodies behind.

In August we had a small turnout at Asgard and so Rob ran a game of Axis & Allies D-Day. While Omaha was a meat grinder the other beaches went better and St. Lo fell by game end.

In September we skipped a meeting. The reasons are best left unmentioned... :-)

In October Rob ran Bulldogs Away as the Syrians and Israelis mixed it up again. This time it was the Yom Kippur War and the firefight was short, bloody, and deadly due to some accurate gunfire.

In November we celebrated Veteran's Day at our new meeting location, the Stag's Head Pub, where we flew some canvas eagles using Wings of War. We tried a new bomber mission and we all learned some valuable lessons on how to run AND play such a game at the Pub.

In December I ran a continuation of HG 84 as she sailed on towards Liverpool. A Condor and several u-boats continued to set upon her and several more of her ships were sunk, including one valuable escort.

In January I ran a Rising Storm playtest, using the still unpublished campaign and revised tactical rules written by Mal Wright. With a small group of players it was a good test of the game I would later run at OwlCon.

In February I brought out Wings of War at the last minute to replace a postponed game and the Brits got the better of the Huns in a swirling dogfight between four erstwhile pilots.

So Happy Birthday BAP!! Here is to another happy year of wargaming, beer drinking, and general good times!