The details of our involvement at Auscon are now available through the Auscon site. Hope to see you there!
If any miniatures game were to tempt our dedicated board gamers away from their first choice game, it would be the steampunk awesomeness that is Dystopian Wars. From UK outfit Spartan Games, Dystopian Wars is a naval combat game played using finely detailed resin miniatures.
The game takes place in an alternative turn-of-the-century world transformed by arcane technologies. In typical 19th Century brinkmanship, the great powers of the world find themselves engaged in a stand-off, waiting for someone to blink.
Forces are easy to bring to the table, thanks to the excellent fleet box sets, which give you all the models you need to learn to play and experience some tense naval combat with air support. The models are all single part resin (metal for larger bombers) with turrets that can be simply dropped into place.
The differences between the factions make the game especially interesting. The guns of Britannia are deadly at close range, while the Prussians excel at sending their tesla-gun armed troops to capture damaged enemy vessels. The Americans and Japanese both use rockets to attack at long range, while the American John Henry robot keeps the skies clear of enemy aircraft, the Japanese mecha squid prowls the surface, waiting for its moment. The Covenant of Antarctica (where all the mad scientists live!) brings ever more bizarre weaponry to bear.
Dystopian Wars is fairly straightforward to learn, and the rulebook provides all the turning templates and counters you need to guide your ships into the fray, and keep track of any damage they suffer. Expect to play for 2-4 hours, depending on the size of your fleet, and the number of times you need to pause and refresh your knowledge of a particular rule (a summary card makes this easier during game play). Five fleets are available now, as discussed above. Four more are expected to follow over the next yet – France, Russia, the Ottoman Empire, and Italy. Look out for a table or two at club meetings!
Since Magic: The Gathering was released back in 1993, there have been a lot of card innovations. Many of our Grand Melee players stopped buying the new cards a while ago. Others are still avid collectors and some are just starting out.
One aspect has remained constant throughout all the design upheavals and new card faces – the back of the card.
Not any more!
The forthcoming set, Innistrad, will have cards with two faces and no back. Mainly to allow for a night/day transformation of some creatures from human to werewolf and back again. The details are on the Wizards website. My first reaction on the werewolves is that they look interesting, but on the Grand Melee table they will be flipping up and down so often it might not be worth the bother. The other two-faced cards look promising however.
Will this destroy Magic forever? I seem to have heard that before…
If you’ve been wondering what games makes up our massive club library, you can now find the complete list at our Games Tab. I am sure your favorites are on there.
Here are the placings and overall scores for the 29 players in our Warhammer tournament at Winter Legends 2011.
6–Jamie Payne……..High Elves…..125
7–Heath Moritz…….Dark Elves…..124
9= Jonathan Peterson..Brettonian…..120
11-Ian Hunt………..High Elves…..116
12-Luke Van Kuyke…..Dwarfs………113
18-Jamie Shirlaw……Orcs & Gobs….106
20-Clinton Dowling….High Elves…..104
21-Stepen Randall…..Wood Elves…..102
22-Graham Marsall…..Orcs & Gobs….100
25-Adam Norris……..Tomb Kings……89
26-Dylon Hopkins……Dark Elves……88
29-Byron Lowrie…….Orcs & Gobs…..83
Congratulations everyone on a great tournament, and special thanks to LXG Club President Eddie Crompton for putting on the event!
This isn’t usually the kind of site for book reviews, but then Reality is Broken is not the usual type of book. Written by Jane McGonigal, veteran game designer (computer games), she takes on the thesis that games are a powerful motivator and also a tool for humans to experience reality have fun. As she quotes in the book, “the opposite of play isn’t work, it’s depression.”
Ms McGonigal spends most of the book looking at how ‘normal’ activities (work, school, etc) do not give the same fulfilment as game playing does, and takes a serious look at ways in which games and game-like structures can be incorporated into those activities to make them more intellectually and emotionally rewarding.
Her background is computer games, though many of the examples she cites (levelling up, achievements, experience and attribute points) and apply equally to the board games, card games and miniatures games we play at LXG.
If you’ve ever wondered how to bring more games into your life, this book is a useful and thought-provoking read. The LXG committee is also thinking more in this direction, so watch this space!
Another year, another Winter Legends tourney to remember. Our Warhammer tourney had a good player turnout, increasing numbers from past Legends events, which was good to see. Prize sponsors War Puppy turned up with a small stall to sell board games, miniatures, and modelling supplies, a very good move!
Haig McLusky was the overall winner of the Warhammer event – well done Haig!
Other place-getters were:
2nd: Matthew Kelly
3rd Dan Smart
Best Sport: Adam Norris
Best Presented: Ian Hunt
Around the hall, other games were being played, including Magic: The Gathering, Twilight Imperium, Memoir 44, Power Grid, Smallworld, Dominion, Settlers of Catan, Ad Astra, and Dystopian Wars. The ‘build your own tourney’ scores are still being tallied, winner will be announced here once we know who they are!
Some of you will already be familiar with trade website ICV2. Every quarter they report on sales through the distributor-retailer channel in the US. The latest report summary is available now and makes for interesting reading.
Board games and card games increased in sales, and this in a climate where comic sales are falling quite badly. The big rise in game sales is coming from deckbuilding games such as Dominion and Thunderstone. Interesting coincidence as those two games have been especially popular with club members over the past few months!
In the board games section perennial club favourites Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride and Carcassonne were top sellers, though Puerto Rico didn’t make the top ten. In miniatures War Machine sat second to the Warhammer 40,000 behemoth, though it’s War Machine that is getting all the attention these days from our miniatures players. Warhammer Fantasy was third in that category.
The best selling games across each category were:
Collectible Card Games: Magic the Gathering
Card Games: Dominion
Board Games: Settlers of Catan
Miniatures: Warhammer 40,000
You can find Magic, Dominion and Settlers in our club library, while we have terrain suitable for your games of Warhammer 40,000.
Winter Legends is coming up this Saturday and Sunday 20 & 21 August, so get ready for two days of gaming!
We have a Warhammer tournament running both days, alongside our freeform boardgame tournament. As the club is open both days for the Warhammer tournament, the 300+ boardgames will be available to use on those days too. We have plenty of room for board games and card games so if you can come on both days, don’t be shy!
The August Grand Melee round will be held on Sunday as usual, starting around 2.30.
The second Auscon event will be held in Brisbane in October this year. There is a focus on cosplay and RPG events that weren’t present in May, but wargames and other events will still be included. You can see the current schedule here.
A couple of interesting new releases came across my screen over the past few weeks, many that should be of interest to LXG members.
First up are the new Terraclips terrain packs from WorldWorksGames. These have been co-branded with miniatures games Malifaux, but the sets look versatile enough to add depth (and height!) to any miniatures-based game.
There’s a video review by Beasts of War here: http://www.beastsofwar.com/fantasy-wargaming/terraclips/
Alos on miniatures-based games, new fantasy board game Chaostle was previewed in the US recently and has been favourable received. Here’s it’s page on BoardGameGeek: http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/3627/chaostle
With over 300 games in our club library, you’d think we have enough. But no, we have never had enough!