Friday, 21 May 2021

OGAM A Real Game! Hephaestus vs Ares

End of May 21. UK is starting to come out of lockdown, but the Indian variations are

starting to grow. I'm double vax'd Tony has 1.

So everything back at my place rather than an enclosed space with mostly unjabbed.

Only 16 months. Shit.

Last time I went through how I designed games. Here's the cut-down playsheets.

Useful to tick off figures. Some games we have both each.

I'm still having problems with formatting, please ignore.

Ares Q2 C5 

Group fighter, cannot be outnumbered.

Combat master, every activation can be used for a separate attack. 

Hammering blow.Roll 1, enemy free hack. 6 +2.

Shapeshift Boar Q2 C4 

Forester, no reduction for moving through woods.

Long move, 

Dashing, attacks in the same activation, without requiring a second activation.

Poison. For every casualty caused, roll a D6,  If 5,6 another casualty.


3x Amazon Princess, Q3 C3 Mounted, Long, Shoot Short, good shot. 

2x Amazon Chariot Heroes Q3 C3 Armoured, Mounted 


4 Amazon Noble Javelin Q4 C2   Armoured,  Greedy,   Shoot Short 

2x 8 Amazon Spear Q4 C2, Greedy 

4 Amazon maiden bow Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot medium

22 Amazon maiden javelin Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot short 

4 Amazon maiden cavalry Mounted, Fast, javelin Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot short 

Hephaestus Q2 C4 

Short move, 

Smithy. Gives Armoured trait to a Legend on deployment.


Tauroi Khalkeoi (bronze bull) Q3 C4   Armoured,   

Artificial,  no morale, no invocations.

Big, +1 combat +1 shot at. 

Combat master every activation can be used for a separate attack. 


Talos the bronze giant Q3 C4 
Armoured,  Artificial, 
Huge, +1 combat +1 shot at.  No cover bonus.
Hammering blow.  Roll 1, enemy free hack. 6 +2.

Perseus Q3 C3 
Stealth, if next to cover, cannot be shot at legend or mortal.
Ambusher ambush bonus +2

Pegasus Q3 C3 Flying,  Long move, 
Carrier, 1 action to pick up, automatic dismount at end.

Hero Q3 C3 @ 60


8 Automata Q4 C2   Artificial 

8 Armoured Heroes Q4 C3 
Steadfast +1 morale
Greedy. Q test if destroys enemy, fails lose 1 action next activation.

16 (2x8) Spear Q4 C2, Greedy 

8 Javelin, Q4 C1 Greedy, Shooter short

The game. No plan survives contact. Somewhere in the last year my 2 D6 boxes got- gone. Hasty plea. Sorted. Deep breath.

OGAM setup is a mini game. For once we added scenery. We diced - and I won. Hephaestus was attacking Ares. Crom. The way it works, the defender places first unit and then the attacker. Anywhere, as long as it's less than a medium away from an enemy. That means no plan survives contact with the enemy. Tony started with Ares - usually we leave gods till last. Sneaky move to gain the hill. But I messed his deployment plan up by sticking the bull so far forward. My left/Ares right was pretty well matched. The enclosure is the ideal location for my javelins to stay safe and pray a lot. The intention of those cavalry is obvious.

I moved Perseus using Pegasus, intending to break the other flank with an end run followed by spearmen. That didn't work or happen.

Tony did a typical Ares move, sending him into the spearmen, intending to isolate my javelins. I had 2 god-killers. Send in Talos, but alas! I got 2 activations, getting in contact but not fighting.

Rats. Send in the bull. I'd sent it up hill to hit the Amazons, now it careers towards Ares!

Ares gets a good go, leaves contact with Talos and strikes him down. Then the bull.

That leaves the central hill defended by remaining javelins & 4 heavy javelin plus a hero.  I sent the Automata in.

I expected to lose them, but they don't take morale tests, cannot invoke.
They ground through the maidens, pushing them back and contacting the rest.
Now, if I could only get my left flank to advance!

I thought I'd give it a try - better to hit a stronger god when you can have a plus.  Didn't work, my usual dice rolls-.

Dead god means a mass morale roll.  I saved all my surviving legends, but lost all mortals except the one unit Ares has stomped on! 

Positions when Hephaestus falls:

What I loss!

Tony decided on a change of tack, turning Ares into boar mode and then charges uphill into my Automata.

The spear was left to the chariot mounted Hero.  

Incoming!  Airborn,   Airmobile.  I'd underestimated Pegasus, seeing it as a carrier.  But it's a hard hitter that can choose where it will hit.  A Huey with door guns.  Down it comes on the chariot hero, crump! 

Hephaestus gets in tight. If they go- it's really over-.

 Ares has pushed the Automata down the hill, giving him a height advantage +1.  Not looking good!

A desperate bid.  Bite that ass!  In boar form, Ares can be outnumbered.  There are 5 Automata left.  Pegasus counts as 4, Ares as 8.  +1.  Pegasus has the height, +1.

Another dead god!

The archers pose a threat to Pegasus, so a charge.  They push him back.

Risen once again Ares takes his revenge on Pegasus.

Meanstwhile.  On the other flank the maiden javelin finally advance.

Perseus thunders down from upon high.  A draw- the Amazons lose 1 and Perseus makes a successful Q roll and tuns dead to a knockdown.  That doesn't help, they swarm him and he's dead.  Never underestimate cheap troops with pointy sticks.

The other hero falls to the Amazon Princess.  That's all my legends gone.

Well there we have it.  We made a few mistakes, had to look up stuff we wouldn't have back when.

More soon! 

Set up & pre set up pics.

I started painting these 3 hours before we started--.

Did a whole load of these,  I used irregular trays (lazily, as they were there)  for more regular troops.  I quite like the look, but I will retrofit some of my older.  You'll note that I put shrubbery on the trays rather than the figure bases.  First use of Museum Miniatures Z range nudes.

Sunday, 16 May 2021

Of Gods And Mortals. How we play breakdown - First game back in the world!

Last of the Shape Of Things To Come posts.  
Bit of an Modus Operandi 
sort of thing.

This is an adult game.  It takes planning and thought with the eye to combined ops.  

There's 3 bits:  Gods, Heroes and Mortals.

Gods do things.  In combat they count as 8 mortals.  When mortals pray, they get more actions.  When they are banished, it's the mortals that can bring them back with their heartfelt incantations of "Oh Ye God, we're all going to die!"  On the scales, big powerful gods cost more, so less points for your others.  It's all in the balance.

I'm hoping to play this game as a sort of series, so there are several options, we've never tried multi player options.  Plus, it will see my older Museum Miniatures replaced with the new, amazing, Z sculptures, new movement bases and some repainting:

Straight 2 player but high point Ares vs Hephaestus.

Kingmaker 3 person game. As above, but with 1,000 point Aphrodite "doing a Stafford" on one flank.  I'm thinking that she deploys (fully or 1 at a time?) first.  She can (dice off) attempt to grab any initiative or reaction.

War!  4 person game.  We've never tried this before.  Ares and Aphrodite vs Hephaestus and 
Athena.  IF this works it's on to Egypt -.

Both sides dice for initiative.  Winner starts deployment followed by opponent, then other side.  Play follows same pattern.  

Best to employ the "Cool Hand Luke" method, rather than waiting, if next player will not impact on the first, keep the pace up.  

Reactions, suggest that the nearest enemy in line of sight gets the go. 

Let's look at Ares.  Costs 376.
Quality 2, usual for a god.  You need 2 different sets of coloured dice.  The 3 normal.  If you roll 2 1's  the initiative passes to your opponent as normal.  Any 1 fail can be taken as a reaction by your opposite number.  The second set of 3 are for units giving up reaction for prayer.

Combat 5, so hits like a proverbial.  Now there's some "apps".
Group fighter means that he cannot be outnumbered.
Combat master allows every activation can be used for a separate attack.  Let's say he's fighting 1 legend & 6 mortals.  He has 5 available.  He does a +2 on the Hero, and +2 on the mortals to reduce them before 4.  That leaves 1 action, so he can either move or clobber someone again. 
Hammering blow. Not your easiest weapon, so a six adds +1, but a 1 does same for your opponent who gets under the swing.

He also has the option to Shapeshift into a Boar Q2 C4 He loses & gains abilities:
Forester allows no reduction for moving through woods.
Long move, normal move is a Medium so each activation used is longer.
Dashing he attacks in the same activation, without requiring a second activation.
Poison. For every casualty caused, roll a D6,  If 5,6 another casualty.

Legends.  You can have between 1-5.  Each counts as 4 mortals in combat.  The rules state that they cannot use more than one third of the total points.  For this reason they're the "centre of the seesaw".  The cost of the god is set, although a few can have "add ons".  I'm going for about 1,500 points.  More points the more activations the god can get from more mortals.

Going back to Ares, I've 480 worth of Legends.  480x3=  1,440 as my new target.  480+376 = 856 of our 1,440 target.  That leaves 584 for mortals.

I have one major bee in me bonnet about the Greek list.  All the heroes are bronze age.  All human mortals are later hoplites.  A bit like playing WW1 with redcoats and muskets.  The real - heroes cannot be armoured and mounted.  Um. no.  That's a chap in & around a chariot.
I've listed the main use of mortals, which is to "pump up" your god.  This gives gods & legends the task of cutting them down.  Such is religion.  I note most 28mm players concentrate on the better grade of mortal, your Spartans and Berserkers.  That's great, they might last a bit longer.  But for "bang for your bucks"  you cannot beat the bollock naked chap with a rock or pointy throwing stick. In our very first game a large unit of rock throwing (small) cyclops took out Hades.  Then they had a long ding-dong battle with a hydra.

Having the most costly god sorted out, I use the legend maximum and for the rest.  

Quick note on Greedy.   These were head hunters, body and/or kit claimers.  All this takes time. Greedy requires a Q test if destroys enemy, if it fails lose 1 action next activation.  This has the benefits of adding a cultural behavior and reducing points.

Here's the lists:

Ares Q2 C5 Group fighter, Combat master, Hammering blow.
Shapeshift Boar Q2 C4 Forester, Long move, Dashing, Poison. 376.

3x Amazon Princess, Q3 C3 mounted, Long, Shoot Short, good shot. @ 102 =306
2x Amazon Chariot Heroes Q3 C3 Armoured, mounted @ 87 = 174

Mortals  (choices)

4 Amazon Noble Javelin Q4 C2 Armoured, Greedy, Shoot Short @20 = 80
2x 8 Amazon Spear Q4 C2, Greedy @ 12 = 192
Amazon maiden bow Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot medium @ 10 = 40
22 Amazon maiden javelin Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot short @ 8 = 180
4 Amazon maiden cavalry Mounted, Fast, javelin Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot short @ 23 = 92

Design philosophy. Ares was worshiped in many places.  I could use Achilles, Myrmidons and his chariots.  As I know he likes them, I've given him/Tony Amazons.
Ares 376
Legends 480
Mortals 584 
Total 1,440

Hephaestus Q2 C4 Short move, 
Smithy. Gives Armoured trait to a Legend on deployment.

Tauroi Khalkeoi (bronze bull) Q3 C4 Armoured, Artificial, Big, Combat master. @ 118
Artificial no morale, no invocations.

Talos the bronze giant Q3 C4 Armoured, Artificial, Huge, Hammering blow. @ 120
Hammering blow roll 1, enemy free hack. 6 +2.

Perseus Q3 C3 Invisibility helm Stealth, Ambusher @ 72

Pegasus Q3 C3 Flying, Long move, Carrier, Unique @ 102

Hero Q3 C3 @ 60

Automata Q4 C2 Artificial 17x 8 = 136

8 Armoured Heroes Q4 C3 Armoured, Steadfast, Greedy @ 27 =216
Steadfast +1 morale
Greedy. Q test if destroys enemy, fails lose 1 action next activation.

16 (2x8) Spear Q4 C2, Greedy @ 12 = 192

8 Javelin, Q4 C1 Greedy, Shooter short, @ 8 = 64

Design philosophy. Hephaestus is well able to construct his own heroes.  Many heroes have benefited from his kit.  As most heroes are kings or princes, the rest of his mortals represent their city retinues.

Hephaestus 212
Legends 472   
Mortals 756
Total 1,440 

Kingmaker Aphrodite. 

Aphrodite Q2 C3 Transfix, Love conquers, Breathtaking beauty 272


Minotaur Q3 C3 Mounted, Armoured, Dashing, Labyrinth =118

2x Chariot Heroes Q3 C3 Armoured, mounted 87 = 174


8 City state infantry Q4 C2,Dash, Javelin Shoot short. 22 = 176
8 City state infantry Q4 C2 Shoot(M) Good shot @ 23 = 184

2x5 City state infantry javelin or sling Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot short @ 8 = 80

Design philosophy. Aphrodite comes from Crete, so here are Cretan troops.  She may be cheap, but has some interesting powers.  Not so good fighting other gods, she can walk through mortals and most legends with ease.  Her mortals can give her the 3 extra dice allowing her to a +3 hit.

God  272
Legend 292
Mortals 440

Total 1,004

War!  Going Bang! (Well) - Splat! - Pow! - String!

For convenience I'm going to stick with the same maximums.

Apthrodite gets another 436 points of which 188 can be Legends.  Harpies may seem an odd choice, but they are another denizen of Crete.

2x Harpy Q3 C2 Flying @ 60 =120  

Bit of a no brainer to up the javelin/slingers  12 x 8 =  96

10 bow Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot medium @ 10 = 100

Charioteer Heroes Q4 C2  Armoured, Mounted Javelin Shoot short. @ 30 =120 

Extra legends  120
Extra mortals  316

Total 436  + 1,004 above = 1,440

Just a reminder it's Ares and Apthrodite vs Hephaestus and Athena.

Athena Q2 C4 288
Lightning (Thanks, Dad!) 
Shapeshift Owl, Q2 C3 Long move, Flying

Odysseus Q2 C2 Armoured, Free disengage, @ 72

Theseus Q3 C3 Armoured @ 40
Ariadne Q3 C1 @24 (if within 1 long of Theseus, he's immune to Labrynth) 

2 Chariot heroes, Q3 C3 Armored, Mounted 87 = 174

4x8 Early tower shield spear (CO) Q4 C2, Greedy @ 12.= 256

16 Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot medium @ 10 = 160

16 x Javelin or slingers Q4 C1 Greedy, shoot short @ 8 = 128

4 Charioteer Heroes Q4 C2  Armoured, Mounted Javelin Shoot short. @ 30 =120 

Design philosophy.  Athena.  Ares may be the god of war, but Athena is the goddess of strategy.  A mass of mortals means she's always charged up.

God  288
Legend 310    
Mortals 842

Total 1,440

Thursday, 13 May 2021

Nostalgia. Not 15mm. Participation game.

Clearing out me shed bit I found this box unopened since when?  Early 80's.  You're a regular reader, so you know my sense of, um, humour.

Let me take you right back:

No internet.

No digital photographs, so we just didn't take pics.

No superglue, only proper araldite.  (still together after decades!)

No hobby paints other than Humbrol enamels.  Only artist acrylics.  Well if there were any, not near us and they would have been far too pricey.  That at least, has not changed.

Weymouth show, run by the famed Martin of Peter Pig fame)  was our "other" local show, the older being at Henry Harbins skool in Poole. Participation games encouraged and we always tried to do something different.

Battletech was THE big SF wargame.

There were many small "indie" RPG's and skirmish games out there.

One of these was called Nuns With Guns.  No, I cannot find it either.  GZG did the figures.  It was all in the best possible taste.  One feature was the Battle Mech War Bot.  These had been the latest in military technology until someone pointed out what a stupid concept they were and relegation to the army surplus store loomed.

There was upon the town of Dorchester a department store called Goulds.  With the rise of some godawful company someone decided to add miniatures.  We soon learned not to buy anything until it was reduced by 33% 'cos nobody bought them.  Thus it came to pass that some Star Wars walkers were reduced.  A pack of  ping pong balls and our Battle Mech Warbots were born.  Some plastic Daleks and a Davros and we were set.  A few bits of scenery to make the obligatory Dalek control room.

The show, the game I don't remember.  I was with my 2 mates-more-like-family, Paul "Weasele"  Jackson and David (Young, as he was the youngest of the 7ish Daves in the British Plate Armoured Society) Thomas.  Paul- disappeared.  Dave moved to China with his Dad. 

I DO remember that we had a small table near the Official Battle Tech club one.  To say that were were not - appreciated by them.  In those days they were as - well, by comparison  they make the modern on-trend latest release anorak seem almost capable of forming a meaningful adult relationship.

Here's the box contents!