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a pursuit of fruitless endeavors and endless refinements

Category: 6×6 gaming challenge 2017 (Page 1 of 3)

Walking Dead COMIC Wednesday: Solo City

It’s been awhile but my Comic Wednesday is back with another issue of The Real Adventures of Rick and Glenn!  This time, we go back to Atlanta to explore the old stomping grounds of Rick and Glenn in another scenario from the Days Gone Bye expansion.

Chapter 4: City Slicker

If you missed the previous issue, you can find it it my Comics link in the top menu.

Dropzone Commander: Bringing Tanks to an Infantry fight.

A couple weeks back, I was able to get in another game of Dropzone Commander at Funtastic Games‘ Dropzone Commander monthly get together.  This time, my friend and I went to a 999 point Skirmish battle.

I don’t recall the name of the scenario but it featured a reinforced bunker in the center that was used to house an objective marker and two downed UCM Bear transports to use as focal points.  I decided to go thematic with an Allied Resistance force who was trying to recover the wounded UCM soldiers and get the last bits of intel reports from the bunker.  My friend had his Scourge force coming in to sweep out the area.

We both knew that this game was going to center around that bunker.  The grey pieces on the side were the only entrance points to the structure.

I actually messed this game up by starting on the wrong corner of the map.  We decided to let it play as we were already through the first round before we realized the mistake.  My Lifthawk trundled in to get as close as possible to the bunker.

Followed by the rest of my forces: a duo of Cyclone Helicopters, a Thunderstorm commander craft, some Anti-Air units (Gun Wagons and Gun Technicals) in their Kraken hovercrafts, and some Attack ATVs and Freeriders to take up the rear.

My friend brought in his Scourge Prowlers to stalk the side of a building with car debris as cover.  Then he drove on a whole division of tanks from the board edge two sets of Anti-Air Reapers and two sets of Anti-Tank Hunters.

By the start of round 2, he was able to get one group of Warriors into the bunker at the cost of their light transport.  That transport thought it was going to be a badass and stay “to the deck” but must have clipped the bunker taking off as it spun out and crashed to the ground.

My Kraken launched a bunch of Gun Technicals to take down more light aerial transports but only got one.  The Prowlers came in to respond, one even trying to take a leak on my shiny Gun Technical.

Bastard.

The Scourge are able to get a second group of infantry into the Bunker as I drop all three of my infantry groups inside.  I definitely have the numbers to hold out in there but we’ll see if the Scourge can find the objective next turn and get out before the battle gets too pitched.

Round 3 starts with the infantry battle and I wipe all the Scourge clean down to one lonely Warrior on one final infantry stand. I send my APC’s around the side and ‘nade that last stand but it totally fails.

My Cyclones get in on the action after seeing the Scourge Anti-Tanks come around and shred my Thunderstorm command unit.  I can’t have those Hunters running free so my Cyclones go full out and wipe out three tanks.  At this point, each Hunter unit is down to one tank.  My Cyclones fall quickly to the Scourge Reapers but it was worth it.

And I get a lucky Objective find and get an infantry group out of there and head home.

Meanwhile my Freeriders have been hopping building to building until they got over the far focal point, where they will camp it out.  The Scourge only have a Reaper to try to claim that focal so I’ve locked that one in.

My Attack ATVs try uselessly to weaken the Scourge Reapers but get taken down instead.

My objective is still trying to make it home while I repair my Thunderstorm and keep my Gun Wagons covered, waiting for the Scourge Overseer to try to come out and make it’s final push for the focal point.

The Overseer comes out but shrugs off most of my Gun Wagon hits.  It won’t take the focal point so my side has this one secure.

I run my remaining APC over to the far side focal point as insurance and take this one at the end of the game as well.

Finally, my Lifthawk makes it to my starting zone and takes the objective home.  The final result for this one were firmly in the hands of the Resistance. I got some really lucky rolls in the mid-to-late game that took out a few key Scourge tanks but I think the biggest thing was being able to overwhelm them with my infantry. With only one objective, this swung the game pretty well in my favor and starting in the wrong corner next to a focal point didn’t hurt either.

Time-lapsed Game Session

I got in another game of Championship Formula Racing, this time the human drivers outnumbered the Historical AI ones.  While it was likely too “artsy” for a good session report, I really liked my “simulator” session.  This time, however, I opted for a more traditional approach. We also messed around with recording the game in a time-lapsed format, which is linking after the main report.

Since this game was the first for a few players, we started with a warm-up test of a few rounds to get us through a couple of the track turns so that everyone could get a feel for how they wanted to set up their cars.

After the test, we made up our cars and decided to add in an AI driver to tighten the board a little more.  I put out an easier Historical driver, Jochen Rindt, and just like my last report, he was using the Front A strategy. We opt for a nice 2 lap race on Monte Carlo.

Jochen ended up out bidding all of us for poll position and soon the race was on.  By the time we got to the first turn, Jochen (black Lotus 77)  had the lead and we stacked in line behind.

We continued to give chase while Jochen kept aggressively spending wear to push ahead.

At this point, I’m in second (red Ferrari 312T) and I feel like I can keep pace with Rindt even with him spending wear tokens like he has an unlimited supply.  My friends (orange March 761 and blue Tyrell P34) had other plans.

Colton in the Orange March 761 pushes past me on the tight no.3 curve even though I try to block him out.  It eats up wear on both cars but he is able to make it.

Reese in the blue Tyrell P34 uses the opportunity to push his car a bit and not follow the line while I end up playing conservative.  Jochen breaks away from us.

I’m out maneuvered again and take up the sad rear in just a few of the opening curves while Jochen wastes no time pushing well past us.

I end up out of that last curve way too slow and watch as everyone else shows me how to race this game.  Niki Lauda would not be pleased.

Jochen clears the first lap of two laps and I’m able to make up a little lost ground but mainly on my friends.  Jochen’s car isn’t really built for the straights though so the game tightens up a little as we get into the first curve again.

We still don’t quite have the hang of it and Jochen is off again leaving us behind.  I am finally able to do some good by pushing both my acceleration and topspeed beyond their max and end up one behind Colton’s orange March 761.

Jochen, however, has really overspent his resources maintaining this lead and is forced to play very conservative. This allows us to close the gap on the tighter 2, 3, and 4 curves.

Colton is low on wear as well and tries to push through curve 5 but ends in a spin.

Colton is still able to maintain his footing and Jochen’s conservative demeanor doesn’t allow him to capitalize on the misfortune. I still can figure out this damned curve and end up way in the back again and can only watch as my friends charge a waning Jochen.

As they battle, Reese takes a spin trying push through the next curve.

This allows me to catch up while Colton tries to take on the unstoppable Rindt. The two lead cars battle the final curve…

…only to see Rindt push too hard on inside line and spin out. I don’t think I played that AI strategy correctly but had Jochen played conservative, he would surely lose against Colton’s faster car.  We have our first lead change of the race!

Colton clears the line while Reese and Jochen leave me the slightest sliver of a chance to take that center line and possibly take second play overall.  It was a long shot as I’d need to push through that final curve, then push my acceleration and topspeed to outpace Reese. I ended up spinning out in the curve instead.  Had I played conservative, I likely could have beat Jochen but definitely wouldn’t have beaten Reese.

As it was, Reese easily takes second and Rindt limps into third place.   The game worked out very well and was a lot of fun.  We debated later about how much time the Historical driver takes and whether we could have a 6 car race with 3 AI and 3 humans.  I initially thought the AI drivers would be faster but I think they turn out to be slower than humans since the player has to make their turn then consult all the AI rules that govern its current turn.

I think the AI system is fantastic, especially for solo games but I wonder if they are too complex to use as filler cars in a timely fashion.  I might experiment a little on “dumbed down” Historical racers to see if they can be run without a strategy card (or if anything, an overly simple one) just to expedite their turn and focus back to the actual players.  I wouldn’t use that for solo play but I think there is merit to this simplification when using them to only fill out a few extra roster spots.


Also, as promised, here was the full time-lapse of our 2 lap Monte Carlo race.


Last but not least, I ordered another set of cars from Shapeways, this time from the 1957 era. I had a chance to prime them:

…and work on some base colors.

Championship Formula Racing: Historical Drivers test

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Tiny Racers

I recently spent some time painting up something besides my black and white Walking Dead collection (shocking, I know).  I talked earlier about receiving Championship Formula Racing (CFR) and my 1976 F1 cars from Shapeways and I decided to start painting them up.

Before I get into that though, I also picked up a game I’ve had my eye on for a while now. This game also deals with racing but of a completely different era: Chariot Race by Eagle-Gryphon Games.

Chariot Race is a light game of, well, chariot racing and while the components are a bit lacking with standee chariots and flimsy player boards, the game seemed fun and can work as a nice filler or evening-ender.

The standees just weren’t doing it so I found out about Irregular Miniatures, a UK-based miniature producer and found this awesome little 6mm chariot racers.  Not only were they a great fit but Irregular Miniatures offers painting services at very reasonable prices so I jumped at the chance to not have to try to paint up these super small minis.

Ian and his team did a great job and I’m glad I finally have the game to show off his great work.

Back to my own painting, I had some fun getting back into color painting and started working on my 1976 series F1 cars.  I’m using ideas from some of the stock photos of these cars as well as BGG User, Ghost95, for his excellent work on these models.

I haven’t done any numbering yet so they aren’t technically finished for me but they are basically done. My game of CFR has enough components for 8 drivers/bots so I’ll probably do another five cars to complete my set and work up more cars if more driver decks are released for the game.

Damn these guys are tiny though. Those are standard 3.5 inch construction nails those cars are mounted on and the aren’t even as wide as the nail head.  Going this small does mean that the crappy craft store acrylics I use really show their limitations, especially when photographed from so close but I’m happy with the start of these.

And they look great on the track as well.


I was also able to throw Santorini down onto the table this weekend before we got into some heavier games.

I went 1 for 3 in a quick set of two player games (no God powers).  I don’t think I’ve developed any sort of rhythm with this game yet but I plan on putting it to the table as often as I can to get a better feel for the game.  Sadly, Inis and Rum & Bones: Second Tide didn’t hold as well as I’d hoped and Santorini was the highlight of the evening.

 

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