Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Long Weekend Games

This past weekend was the Thanksgiving Day long weekend in Canada. I'd hoped to get a bunch of gaming in - mostly play testing for the games I'm running at ToonCon this next weekend. I did get a few games in, but not nearly as many as I'd hoped. I was pretty tired - all this past week or so I've been feeling like I've been on the cusp of coming down with a cold - sore throat, general tiredness, but it never full developed into one...? Also there was a lot of other stuff going on, not the least of which was Amanda packing and trying to get ready for a trip Monday morning (she had to get up at 3:30am and leave the house at 4am to catch a 6am flight to Toronto for the first leg of her journey!).

Kill Team

We started off the weekend with a four-player game of Kill Team on Friday night. I'd hoped to play Kill Team every evening all weekend (Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday) but only ended up getting games in on Friday and Saturday...


Bruce joined us for the evening and I ran a four-player game for Him, Amanda, Finnegan and The Girl. I used scenario I though might work well for the four-player learn-to-play game at ToonCon this Saturday. Bruce played Genestealers (he has his own Tyranids, but couldn't find them, but I was happy to lend him my own - so I could see how they'd play), Amanda played her Drukhari (which I will be borrowing and also using for the Kill Team game at ToonCon), but neither of the kids were interested in trying out the new Heretic Astartes Team...  They wanted to play with their own Orks and Aeldari...

Deployment. The Scenario was "Recover Intelligence". Each player had a triangular shaped deployment zone entered on one of the sides of the board.

I do like the four-player board. There's a bit more space to move around, but can still be crossed quickly enough...

Genestealers all set up and ready to go.

Finnegan's Orks all ready to go...

The Drukhari thirsting for blood...

The Carftworld Aeldari... ready to do... whatever it is that they do...?

Starting round one. There was basically five objective markers on the table; one in the centre and on between each players deployment zones. Players collected victory points each turn based on which objectives they controlled - for controlling the objective markers closest to their own deployment zone they got one point each, for controlling the one in the centre they received three, for the two that were on the opposite side of the table near the opposing players deployment zones they received two each.

The Asuryani (Craftworld Eldar) and Drukhari clash over the objective bordering their deployment zones.

The Orks, Drukhari and Genestealers all went straight for that objective in the middle of the board.

The Asuryani played a little more cautiously...

Genestealers facing a firing line of Aeldari Guardians.

Orks and Genestealers fighting over the Objective Marker between their deployment zones.

Eldar rangers taking shots at the Drukhari. I think they took took out the Kabalite with the Dark Lance...

Orks and Genestealers thin themselves out in the fight phase before the Drukhari even get there.

I think the Orks held the central objective marker at the end of the first turn.

Round Two - win go the Drukhari and the second wave of Genestealers.

More fighting in the middle of the Kill Zone.

One Drukhari taking on two Burnas and a regular Ork boy... I think she might have survived the round and taken out at least one of the Burnas.

Tired of being shot at, The Genestealers charge the Aeldari firing line. One died in a hail of monofilament shuriken overwatch fire. The second one successfully charged in.

More of the fighting in the middle of the table.

I think we got to the end of round two (or was it three...?) and had to call it.

Bruce had not played and hasn't picked up the rules and so I had a chance to practice explaining all of them... at that point I realized there is NO WAY I'm going to get through a 4-player game in the two-hour time slot my game is allotted on Saturday. I'm not sure I'd even get through a two player game in that time with having to explain the rules to any new players... Uggggghhhh...

Previously I've usually run my miniature games on the Saturday evening and took up two time slots. Often, however, when I've run skirmishy games (like Ambush Z or Song of Blades and Heroes) the game took less than two hours... let along the four it was slotted for...

When I said I'd run Kill Team, I don't think it was even out yet and so I was based my plan to run it in one slot on Saturday afternoon on my experience running those games and the games of Shadow War: Armageddon I played earlier this year... though, now that I think about it, all those games of Shadow War: Armageddon were two-player games, and almost all of those were with people the that had played some sort of Warhammer-type game before and so were familiar at least with the basic concepts...

The basic rules for Kill Team aren't THAT difficult to explain (not as simple as, say, Song of Blades and Heroes, but still not too bad)... but there are SO MANY special rules and exceptions for each of the forces... let alone trying to explain all the command points and tactics cards - the basic tactics cards are tricky enough, but then there are all the tactic cards for the different specialists... and then there's all the cards for the different factions!? I though briefly about leaving them out entirely, but they seem like they are such an essential part of the game these days...

I'm kind of hoping, at this point, that I'll at least be able to explain most of the rules, quickly, and get playing the game and get through at least ONE round (maybe two...?) to give everyone a taste for the rules...

The nice thing about the scenario is that victory points are awarded every turn, so even if we do only get through ONE round, there will be some victory points awarded - which will hopefully make the players feel like maybe they accomplished SOMETHING in the two hours!?


On Saturday evening, Amanda and I played a two-player game of Kill Team.

I played the Genestealers - I wanted to try them out for myself and familiarize myself with their abilities and tactics... and I thought it might be a quicker game than taking the Horde of Chaos.

Round One: I had the initiative and surged forward, grabbing the central objective marker and the two on the flanks of my deployment zone.

Amanda starting off her movement phase.

She wasn't about to just let me HAVE that objective!

Genestealers eyeing up their prey on the left flank. That prey kept shooting at them, though...

Round Two: the Genestealers and Drukhari mixing it up on my left flank.

Savage fighting going on in the centre and right flank as well.

Both units were whittled down to next to nothing... The Drukhari Team actually BROKE on Round Two! But they managed to keep going until the end of Round Four when the game ended and they won - having collected the most victory points throughout the game... But at that point I think we each had three left on the table - out of nine for me, ten for her. I think a few of hers still on the table also had flesh wounds...

Amanda still hasn't gotten her head entirely around all the abilities of her Drukhari - even though this was her third game with them. The first Round was quite slow, but the last couple went a lot quicker. partly because there was less figures on the table... but also partly because she was starting to catch on...

I'm really looking forward to maybe starting a little campaign after the dust has settled after ToonCon and Amanda gets home... The game had lots of possibilities and I'm excited about playing games with a bit more narrative...

Railways of the World 

I also got in two games of Railways of the world on Saturday and Sunday. Both were with the family, but on Saturday Brent joined us.

The first game, on Saturday, Finnegan just rocked it. He started in New England - unopposed - and just raked in the cash building short lines and delivering loads and loads of goods. He took ONE BOND in the entire game and ended with $50,000+ cash - though not QUITE enough to gain his bonus points for Moses Taylor (The Girls had $1-2000 more than him!?). I on the other hand was dead last and had taken out 21 bonds by the end of the game... I DID manage to get my six bonus points for playing J.P. Morgan and having the most links! I didn't get a picture of the Saturday game, however.

Starting the game on Sunday. Everybody pondering their Rail Barons and considering where to start, with the fresh experience of yesterday's game on their brain.

This one I started in the Northeast, building a one link line from New York to Philadelphia. And started delivering stuff right away. Finnegan has the same idea building from Philadelphia to Baltimore on his first move. He built the Boston to Washington Link, but I built New York to Chicago, Baltimore to Toledo, AND New York to Kansas City!?

I think this may have been my best game EVER - and certainly the first time I've won in a LONG TIME.

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I finished up the Adeptus Mechanicus Kill Team this evening and will probably have pics up of those tomorrow. Though I also picked up a box of Sicarians, I was mostly concentrating on getting the Skitarii Rangers and Vanguard that came in the core box - the team I will be bringing to ToonCon. I did finish up one Sicarian Infiltrator, the rest will have to wait until after ToonCon.

After the Ad Mech pics, I probably won't be posting again until the ToonCon report(s) on the weekend.


  1. Not that I've played any GW game (let alone Kill Team), but maybe just pick out one or two key special rules (ones that distinguish a faction from the others) and use those ones. Ignore the others unless the players have some experience already.

    For example, when I play Chain of Command, I usually ignore the national characteristics when I'm putting on a game for a convention. They're nice but they're chrome that doesn't really show off the goodness of the game. As they only apply to a specific side, it means that I don't have to say "Ignore this" to the other side. It keeps things simpler.

    1. I tried to think of a way to simplify it and the only way to do it would be to leave off the tactics cards... ignoring special rules wouldn't really work as it's those special rules that gives certain troops an advantage - and thus worth more points - and without them, they would be outclassed and outnumbered.

      I'll probably give them the option of leaving off the tactics cards... but the tactic cards are one of the main things that really makes this different from all previous version...?

    2. Yes, that sounds like the right approach. I probably wouldn't even give them the option about the tactics cards unless they've already played, but you know the game system so....

  2. Teams look great and the scenery is awesome! Seriously it works really well,good luck with the game at the con.
    Best Iain

  3. Oh, I hate those flights where you have to leave before the crack of dawn. I worry too much about oversleeping, so I sleep badly at best.

    The Kill Team/Zone games look great! I think if I was in a game at a con and the game runner told me ahead of time that you likely wouldn't be able to finish the game, but should at least get a good idea of how it plays and how fun it is, then I'd be okay with that. Better than being told a game will only take x amount of time and find out it takes much longer.

    1. Yeah, it is billed as a "learn to play" - so hopefully we at least get through one turn so they can at least get a sense of how the games works. I'd be ecstatic if we could get though TWO turns, especially if the second turn took half the time, so they could get a sense that while a learning game does take a long time, once you actually know what you're doing it goes much, MUCH quicker!