Sunday, November 20, 2016

No Brain Wargame no Cure for a Funk

     I have been in a funk for over a month now. Projects started remain unfinished. I wanted to work more on how to use the wooden tiles in my wargames to activate units. However, once again I couldn't decide what figures or period to use. In the end I decided on a No Brain Wargame at its' simplest, two armies armed only with spears on a chessboard. Each army started with 5- 4 man units. There was one tile for each unit, along with the odd tile to stop the turn.  At first the game progressed well. However, as the armies came together, it seemed that one army was getting to move more than the other before the "stop" tile came up. Now one good thing about playing solo games is you can change the rules during the game. I decided to remove the "stop" tile, so every army could move 5 times in a turn.  As the game went on I also decide to let units move more than once per turn, another unit sacrificing its' movement.  It was an ok game. In the no brain game individual figures retreat. On a square game board, the figures become spread out. With a hex board, retreating figures can fall back toward each other and form ad hoc units. I decided to try another game using the rules mentioned above on a hexed field.

     The second game once again was just "ok".  In this game each army got a commander who could add himself to a unit, increasing their strength.  At first this game seemed to be going in a good direction. However, after a while I would put the "general" figure with a unit and then move it three or more times in a turn; other units just sat not moving. The game was finished, but it was a disappointment.

    Post game there are several things for me to think about. First of all, even in a No Brain Wargame there should be at least two different weapons class in each army, be it archers and spearmen or riflemen and artillery. Just having one class of soldiers makes it strictly a game of who gets to roll first slug fest.  Also, if a unit gets to move an additional time in a turn, it should be limited to moving twice in one turn. Another possibly is each unit moves each turn, with a bonus tile for each army giving them an additional move per turn.

   While these games haven't snapped me out of my funk, they have given me some food for thought and have me wanting to play out another game to try the changes mentioned, so they weren't a complete waste of time. The games also got me to dig out my copies of "Practical Wargamer" magazines and I spent an enjoyable evening reading articles instead of sitting in front of my computer.
The two armies after their first moves.  One reason I wanted to play this game was to use the Peter Laing figures on the right; it was the first time I've used them.  The pictures will not be a blow by blow of the battles.  They will show a couple of the problems that arose in the games.

Two blue soldiers are forced to retreat.

The two who just retreated then move to their right to form a three man unit, that then attacks the soldier to their front; with no result.

This picture demonstrates a unit moving twice in a turn. The first attack forces one blue soldier to retreat. The second attack on the blue unit to its' right has no success.

The next two pictures shows a double move by the blue unit. Its' first attack kills one red soldier and forces another to retreat off the board. 

The blue unit then falls back one square and attacks the unit to its' left, killing another red soldier and making the other retreat.

The end of the battle; the blue wins the victory.

the second battle pits the Peter Laing Ottomans vs....

.....the Peter Laing Persians.

In this picture an Ottoman unit with the general, has caused one Persian to retreat. The Persian figure retreating is the general.

The Turks attack the same unit, this time causing two Persians to retreat and killing another. The Turks then advance into the vacated hex.

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