This is not a test

I like skirmish style gaming and yet recently I haven’t managed a lot at this level. There always seems to be more games, genres and miniatures than I have time or opponents. Particularly opponents.

I play the games I do because I can get games in these systems. Recently this means Bolt Action and 40K. I enjoy both of these games however I like the challenge, and often the speed, of smaller games. So, I was pleased to hear some friends were starting a campaign using This is Not a Test

Marshall

The Marshall

I had not heard of the system where bands, teams or tribes battle it out in a post-apocalypse USA, but it has at least three things to recommend it. While there are specific minis, you can just use anything you have (the rules are pretty flexible). The rules are actually pretty good (with some nice distinct elements). I will get to play regular games.

Outrider with a sniper rifle

Outrider with a sniper rifle

So far I’ve played just one game, with a borrowed war band. The activation mechanism is similar to the Songs of … family of rules, where you try to activate models one at a time, but failure passes initiative to your opponent. Not quite IGYGO, and not completely random. The other main differences are wandering monsters are a feature (not unique, but done without too much paperwork).  The rules also seem to balance shooting and melee – in a terrain heavy table and depending on the mission – neither style of war band is an automatic win. I’m sure there is detail I’ve missed in my single read of the rules and single game, but the basics all seem to be there.

I have looked at my miniatures collection and chosen a small band based on  the law enforcement faction. Ultimately I will build a war band, but this will get me going.

african01

Specialist with LMG

I’m yet to create a proper background, but for now we have the A-47 Highway Patrol, willing to keep the road open and safe for travellers and locals, for a price.

african02

Officers: the masked gunmen who make up most of the troop; 4 or 5 will probably make up points

There is one more figure, a warden who is a sort of second in command. I don’t have a photo for this model on hand. In fact, I might make the 2iC a bit of a close combat bruiser. I’ll have to have a look for a suitable model.

This is a very shooty war band but I think will go OK and has the strong merit of not needing any painting and is a chance to use some models that haven’t seen much use.

Have you played TNT?

D.

Late Christmas

My golly gosh! What a busy and rather fabulous couple weeks for gaming here at the Republic of Northcote.

A Stug III ordered from Black Tree Design one lazy day between Christmas and New Year arrived in the post. While the kit took three attempts plus some green stuff to assemble, I got it base coated this morning and it looks OK.  My Germans will be pleased that some reinforcements are on the way.

Then there is Arc.  That needs a whole post for itself but will need to wait until my head stops spinning. It was a great weekend of gaming. Six good games against six great opponents, amidst the mayhem of 150 other gamers doing the same.
(Five losses, but you can’t have everything.)

The forces of chaos were not totally at a loss over the weekend because WATT – on our 9th attempt – won the Saturday night Apocalypse game known as the Golden Fez.
A twitter run down can be found here (For those who don’t know me, I’m the homeless looking guy holding the fez; the one on the left, not the homeless looking guy on the right.)

Arc is such a blast I arranged a day off work to recover. And I’m glad I did, because a Kickstarter from Empress Miniatures arrived today: a platoon of modern Chinese PLA. These are really very nice miniatures and I’m looking forward to get them on the table against some of my Eureka moderns. Another blog post waiting to be written.

I’m off to bed now. I need a lie down after all this excitement. Oh, and I have to read the Fate Core rules that Gaming Guy put me on to.

Photos and detail will follow in the next week or three
(painting desk and work permitting).

D.