The latest Dropzone Commander book, Reconquest Phase 2, came out a couple weeks back and I was able to get my copy the other night. In celebration, a group of friends threw down a four player, 1000 pt army mash up. Brian hosted and put together the scenario “Survey and Control.”
We were rusty so we weren’t able to complete the full game but it was looking really tight so it would have been interesting to see how the final rounds would play out. Not many new units were on the board since we’re still assembling and painting but I was able to throw in my newest additions to my Resistance family.
The Battle Buses are not that new as I’ve featured them in my Gen Con prep posts but the Kraken transport is a new one and this game marked the first time I was able to put the full unit into action. It was a little slow for the large 6′ x 4′ map and I used the infantry inside for intel gathering but it was nice to see how I should field them.
One interesting thing that came out of last night’s game was Brian’s recommendation to have the rulebooks cut and spiral bound. After flipping back and forth through the (now) three different rulebooks, having them spiral bound and able to lay flat made a lot of sense. Today I decided to try it out and had FedEx Office cut the binding. I was about to just have them separately bind each book but then I started to think about some alternatives.
I thought I could just have all three bound into one massive book but the size seemed too unwieldy. Then I hit upon the idea that I should split the pages into two books, one with all the rules and units, and the other one with all the fluff and story. I couldn’t burn an hour at the FedEx Office store assembling my books so I took them home and started working from there. In the process, I started to realize that I could also rearrange the contents a bit to help organize things better. It would have been easiest to just rip the fluff out and then put the book information together and call it done but it wasn’t that much more work to actually pull all the relevant sections together from each book and keep them together as coherent chapters.
This turned out very well as I now have all the rules across all three books in the same place, all the scenarios in one section, all the units, etc. This makes the material a lot easier to find. The indices and contents were of minimal value in the original books (sad when publishers don’t realize the value of strong indices) so that was no major loss and the organization here is much easier anyway. I’ll still likely add tabs to call out the important divisions or frequently referenced rules but for now, this was a great little rulebook pimp.
All this binding reminded me that I wanted to do something with Flick em Up! as well. This great dexterity game comes with a rule book and scenario book and has 2 expansions, each with their own rules/scenario book. The books are multi-lingual (containing multiple languages in one single document) which makes them quite thick.
Since space is a premium in the game box, I decided to rip out the other languages in the document and have them rebound to only contain the English content. This made the final manuals about a third the size of the originals. The spiral binding hampers the size reduction but I’m sure I can position the manuals so that the spiral is on a side that has room for it. The reduction of the bulk of the middle area of manual is the real gain.
Most game manuals I have don’t need this kind of treatment as most game manuals are Saddle Stitched and will lie flat as needed. Miniature game manuals are usually too large/thick for that binding technique so the next option is Perfect Binding which groups the pages into sections, uses an adhesive to keep them together, and then wraps it all with a thicker/heavier print around the content as a cover. It’s a strong binding option but the manuals won’t lay flat, making it annoying to keep references open. Flick em Up has this style as well, likely because the higher page count due to the multi-lingual approach.
Since the option for the consumer to cut and spiral bind these manual is cheap and easy (assuming you have access to a print shop), I don’t see a reason to not do this for most games that have Perfect Binding manuals. Also, if interested, you can learn more about different binding options from this great UK binding site: Student Bookbinding
I’ll leave you with my next fun little painting job, my Resistance “Prime.”