Tabletop RPG Podcast and Roleplaying Resources

Category: Wargames (Page 1 of 5)

Top Skirmish Wargames for RPG Players

I’ve been on the hunt for a ‘B’ game to have handy when my normal RPG game session doesn’t have enough players for quorum, or if the GM is having a bad day and isn’t feeling like running a game. Some of us aren’t that hip on board games (me included), and wargames seem like a nice option. 

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Neil Thomas Rules for Black Powder Era Napoleonics Wargames

I’m not sure if or when I’ll get into Black Powder era wargaming, but it’s always interested me (mainly because of my love of the Horatio Hornblower books which fed my interest in the Napoleonic wars).

Napoleonic WargamingAnyway, was doing research for a friend on different rules systems for Napoleonics wargames, since I’ve always loved the simplicity of Neil Thomas’s One Hour Wargame rules. It turns out he has FOUR different sets of rules that could be used for Napoleonic wargaming. Those are (listed from least complex rules to most complex rules):

A quick Google search will give you lots of discussion on these rules systems (for example, this one).

There’s a fairly active Yahoo group for all the Neil Thomas games here that has lots of resources, house rules, and discussion on this topic.

One day when I have more free time I’d love to give these rules more attention 🙂

Using 3/4″ Magnetic Bases for 15mm Miniatures

I’m musing over basing standards for 15mm miniatures for my future Traveller games, and I think I’m going to standardize on 3/4″ (20mm) flexible magnets for basing. I’ve been using 1/2″ flexible magnets on my bases since that works well for the Traveller maps I’ve been printing out (which have 0.5″ squares).

Magnetic bases are cool since you can transport them on metal surfaces like magnetic white boards or cookie tins. It also gives you the ability to base on magnets before you start painting and prime and paint the minis while sticking the minis on metal surfaces (removing the need to use sticky tack or other method).

[From the blog]

Magnetic minis in a metal tin for transport.

You can buy 3/4″ bases here.

1/2″ has proved problematic in that they won’t stand up as well on textured terrain, and some minis (such as some of the Fallout minis Mason is using) simply don’t fit on 1/2″.

My goal is to build out a few platoons of minis for Player Character and NPCs so that you can quickly move into ground combat with 25-80 minis on the table and play out meaningful, tactical combat in an hour or less. I’d like to construct a platoon like you see on the Broken Stars and Burning Ships blog.

Photo from the 'Broken Stars and Burning Ships' blog

Photo from the ‘Broken Stars and Burning Ships’ blog

One thing I love about 15mm is the speed of painting. I painted up 10 Varstcheen bug NPCs for my last Traveller game in about 1 hour. That’s 6 minutes a mini — about 10x faster than painting the same figures in 28mm.

Also, 15mm is much cheaper and lets you do things like vehicles without breaking the bank. See this blog post on what $85 will buy you in 15mm!

Other reference art for my future platoons is below.

$85 worth of minis From the blog.

[From the blog]

A platoon of minis from the blog.

[From the blog]

Nice red color scheme from the blog

Wargame: The Battle for the Crystals

We took the Grimdark Beta rules from for a spin last Saturday, adding in a few house-ruled Fantasy special rules from One Page Rules Age of Fantasy game. We built out two 2,500 point armies.

We had a human army (7 units with a total of 70 models, with a total of 70 attacks) fighting a monster army (6 units with a total of 35 models, with a total of 60 attacks). That’s a total of 105 models and 130 attack rolls each round!

I timed how long it took. Not counting time to select our armies and set up the terrain, it took 10 minutes to take turns deploying our units. Each round took 40 minutes.

The goal was to end the fourth round with control of the most objectives out of four total objectives. Due to an RPG game we were running later that night, we decided the 3rd round would be our last. The Monsters won, but partly this was due to the player running the humans having a different understanding of the Charge rules. I’ll be posting on the One Page Rules forums to get clarity on that for next game.

My estimate is that next time we played, assuming our armies were already select and terrain was ready to place, that it would take about 20 minutes for setup, 40 minutes per round, and for 4 rounds that would be a 180 minute game (3 hours).

It was a fun time; I look forward to playing again!

Byzantine & Viking Army

Byzantine & Viking Army

The orc, gnoll, giant, ape-men forces

The orc, gnoll, giant, ape-men forces

Crystal cache objective

Crystal cache objective

The armies

The armies

Using Activation Markers from Litko

Using Activation Markers from Litko

Final Round: Capturing the Crystal

Final Round: Capturing the Crystal

Check out a full set of photos from the game.

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