Thursday, November 06, 2008

Of wolves and lambs

My regular gaming partner and me met today for another wargames session. This day's theme was the French-Indian War (1754-1763, if you've not heard of it before). And although we are normally into larger skirmish games for this setting (using the excellent "This Very Ground" rules from Iron Ivan Games), I insisted on starting a campaign with Rattrap's "Among the Warparties", a supplement for their "Gloire" ruleset. What I like about this system are many, many things, but foremost it is its call for creativity: You can tell fantastic stories with a minimal amount of figures, terrain and gaming time. So there's room enough to concentrate on details.

One of those details are so called encounter markers, i.e. objectives or events a model triggers if moved in contact. Here's the selection I've made for today's game with a certain mysterious Indian/Wilderness theme:

Note: These markers represent places that catch your interest, so I thought there'd be also room for giant mushrooms. ;) Graves, firepit and rocks are homemade, totem by Conquest Miniatures, musket by Redoubt Enterprises and mushrooms by Wargames Foundry.

Secondly, I sketched two linked scenarios as a starter for our campaign. Halloween seems to continue to have an effect since I went for a slight horror story, heavily inspired by "Le Pacte des Loups", a very fine movie. Therefore a scary beast should roam the wilderness, and I already had a fitting miniature on my mind (and my lead pile). That's the result:

Master & Minion?

Back view

It's GW's Wild Warg Chieftain from their LotR-range. Simply got to get that model, a great sculpt; think by Perrys again. I've remodeled the victim's mail hauberk to 'universalize' the model's look (less fantasy/Medieval).
The accompanying chap is a Jesuit priest/missionary from Conquest Miniatures. He made his first appearance in the second scenario and might play an important role later in the enrolling campaign.

Finally, three action shots from our games. Sorry, had no time for a full report; if someone is interested I could give a quick summary of the events.

Mani is spotted by British rangers as he dashes forward to keep on tracks of the beast. (Figures by Conquest, watchtower and tent by Rusus.)

Blessings for Sergent St. Pole as he secures the surroundings of the mission house.

Gregoire, Chevalier de Fronsac faces an unexpected enemy.


Andrew said...

Very terrain and models! I've been meaning to get into the FIW for a while. I grew up in upstate NY. The dioramas at Fort Ticonderoga are what inspired me to collect toy soldiers! I have some Dixon rangers, Indians and French, but I have only painted two models: Robert Rogers and the Marquis de Montcalm.

Among the Warparties/Gloire sounds very interesting. I rarely wargame, but I somehow still collect all these rulebooks.

I saw Botherhood of the Wolf too. I was very disappointed at the inaccuracy of the Huron's costume, but that's the film industry for ya.

Andrew said...

Whoops. I meant to say, "Very nice terrain and models!"

Sire Godefroy said...

Hi andrew,

glad you like 'em. The FIW is an interesting conflict, for me mainly because it has all those spiffy uniforms of the 18th century, but also a decent amount of skirmish actions. The European theatre of the Seven Years' War lacks that a bit (however, my interest in the period started there as it's closely connected with local history around here).
Sometime in the future - perhaps when journeys to the US become less restrictive for Europeans again - I'll visit the East Coast.

If you're interested in the Gloire rules, check Rattrap's site - there's a demo version ready for download, which has all you need for a trial game.

And, yes, you're right about the needless inaccuracies in the movie - but after all, it was a (pseudo)historical action movie with a great background store. I had read about it before. And, after all: it was French, and I'm frankly Francophil. ;)

PS: A late "thanks" for your comment on my other blog - Google did a decent job! :)


Andrew said...

I agree, I especially like the French uniforms and flags. The fusion of European / Indian dress and weaponry is also very interesting.

You must visit NY state. There are many FIW sites in a relatively small area. Fort Ticonderoga and Fort William Henry have been rebuilt as museums. You can see the ruins of Crown Point, and Nouvelle France is only a train ride away. Much of the wilderness of New York looks as it did 200 years ago. The Adirondack Mountains are especially beautiful. Perhaps our new government will make it easier for you to visit.

But, for now I will envy your ancient Roman sites and museums, while you envy my FIW locations.

A biento!

Sire Godefroy said...

that's a deal! Although I have to visit our Ancient sites here in Europe first myself. Roman history is another affair of my heart - and you shall see some Roman miniatures here soon. ;)


PS: Yes, you did! Congrats.

cianty said...

Very inspiring scenery and set-up! I enjoyed looking at these pics a lot. Thanks for sharing!

Giles said...

Awesome. I particularly like the markers - very inventive.

Best wishes



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