Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Fallcon 20 (21-23 September 2007) - Part One

Just back from my trip to Calgary and Fallcon 20 . I headed out to Calgary on Thursday and stayed at my friend John’s (Cheers mate!). Thursday evening I tried out BattleLore with John and utterly crushed him (following rule #1 of teaching someone a new game – let the noob win thereby ensuring they will want to play again instead of immediately giving up hope – Cheers again!).

Friday I we wandered downtown to the Sentry Box and ran into Gary there. I swear every other time I go there I run into someone I know…. Anyway after spending way too much money and making a few more stops it was off to Fallcon!

Wouldn’t you know it - I forgot my camera. Which is really too bad because Friday night’s game – much like John Carter last year The game was visually stunning! Loads of very well painted figures and expertly crafted terrain. It was beautiful. Unfortunately that’s about all it had going for it…. Also just like John Carter last year the rules were really loose and widely open to interpretation and so rulings had to constantly be made on the spot and then changed when the clever rules lawyers found a new and clever way to exploit each one…. Turns took forever… Ah well, I could go on, but what’s the point. Another game, which could have been a whole lot of fun, ruined by a clever and argumentative rules lawyer bent on crushing all others…

Next morning….

For Saturday morning I had signed up for De Bellis Antiquitatis: Rome! I was a little worried about this. Those Calgary guys take their DBA seriously. The last DBA tournament I played in at Fallcon had been slightly less than fun (mostly due to the same rules lawyer from Friday night….). I had absolutely nothing to worry about, however, as everyone I played with was a lot of fun. I lost. I lost BIG TIME! Zero out of three, I’m not sure I even took out a single enemy stand in the entire tournament…. But I had a pile of fun just the same!

I’m not all that familiar with the Roman era. Most of my DBA experience has been Vikings, Saxons and Normans. I played Early Germans. In my third round the Germans played against Libyans… in Libya… not sure why they would be there, but they were so thoroughly thrashed they decided not to try again for nearly 2000 years! The Libyans were expertly played by Paul Hannah from Seattle – mostly warbands versus psiloi in a pile of bad going terrain. I had NO IDEA how to deal with that. It was all over so fast I never even got to take any pictures….

So here’s a couple of pictures of the first couple rounds…

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

My first round opponent was an old friend from Saskatoon, Cory Loshney. Here are the Marian Romans (I think…) he fielded. Most armies were provided by Sean Devitt (the fellow that ran the event). I do believe this was one of Sean’s.

Here are the Early Germans I played. Also, I believe, painted by Sean.

The Romans and the Germans mix it up.


I was crushed. If I recall correctly Cory killed five stands…. And maybe my general… oh well…

So fast was my first round I had a chance to wander around and check out some of the other games. Here is John, center of the picture, playing a large multi-player game of Roborally.

So great big 15mm ACW game that was going on next to the DBA tournament.

Mustangs and Messerschmitts?

The next round was against another Early German army. (Like that wasn’t going to be just a big shoving match…). Here’s the really exciting bit – my opponent, pictured above, is none other than Doug Hamm (you know… writer of Larry Leadhead?! How cool is THAT!?).

Doug brought his own army. Like all the armies present they were beautiful! As expected it was a big shoving match until one of my warbands tripped while being shoved back and then Doug’s Germans rolled up the line.

Some more of the DBA guys playing. In the immediate foreground are Sean Devitt (right – moderator of the tournament) and Gary Chappell (also from Saskatoon – who, if you are a regular reader you have no doubt seen elsewhere on this blog…).

In the end my pal Cory was proclaimed Caesar! HUZZAH! ALL HAIL CORY: CONQUEROR OF THE EMPIRE!

Next up was Victory at Sea. On the left is Don – my team mate who played the Bismark and the Koln – and on the right is Brent who played the British ships – the Hood, York, Nelson, and Leander. I had two Italian ships Trento and Littorio.

There are my ships. I think the one in the foreground is the Littorio.

(L to R) The Leander, Trento, and Nelson. (I think …).

The Littorio hammering on the Nelson. I think in the end I sunk the Nelson. Another fellow joined Brent later in the game. I think they got the Koln but the Bismark thrashed the Hood and the York and that got us into round two.

I ended up playing Don in round two. He had an American Cruiser and Destroyer, and I had a Japanese Cruiser and Destroyer. Above are my two ships. I totally don’t remember any of their names.

We swung high-speed circles around each other. Eventually I got in a couple good hits and sunk the American cruiser and the destroyer decided that discretion was the better part of valour and made for Hawaii.

Apparently in the other second round game they totally wrecked each other. A couple were sunk and all were crippled. As we didn’t have time for a third round and I got away with both both my ships more or less in tact (barely!) I was declared the winnah! Yay for me.

Next up: Part Two – Savage Worlds Saturday Night!

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