Sunday, 3 June 2012

Muskets and Tomahawks - First Game

This was our first game at the Gloucester club a couple of weeks ago. I umpired a 500 point aside French Indian Wars game between two mixed forces. We rolled up for the objectives and the British got defend which meant they had to keep the French away from the settlement and that a third of their units started off table. The French got engagement which required them to destroy two thirds of the enemy force.
Settlements are key features of M and T and are required elements of all table tops. They are placed first and the rest of the terrain follows in any manner agreeable to the players. The game benefits from plenty of cover.
The turns are card driven. On the turn of say the French Indians card, all French Indian unts receive 1 action with which they can either move, shoot or reload. Regulars have less cards than Indians and Irregulars in the deck but get 2 actions when they do come up.
When figures fire black powder weapons they are marked with cotton wool or similar so that you know they have to reload.
These British Rangers spent pretty much the whole game hiding in this field. This allowed me to tease Mark incessantly but also allowed Mark to complete an Officer's side plot. I love this simple device which gives extra character to Officer figures who are very important individuals in M and T. The Ranger Officer in this case would complete his side plot if he fulfilled an oath made to the Ranger unit that he would get them through the battle. In game trms this meant the unit had to survive with less than 50% casualties. Completing the side plot for your officer can make a defeat into a draw and so on. Officers can also be given talents which are abilities which can be bought at additional points cost.
Units like the Canadian Militia above have a faster move rate so are allowed to spread out more than regulars.
Regular Infantry benefit from the Firing Line trait. It restricts their arc of fire but allows them to give a more effective volley and the opportunity to give a bayonet charge which causes reaction tests in their opponents.
Indians are in smaller groups and tend to be ok until they are shot at. They do a lot of running around (here through my pumpkin patch!). Indians and some irregular troops carry one shot thrown weapons which can be used once per turn as a free shoot action attack before a move action. Useful for softening up a charge target.
The game was a draw on objectives, but Mark's skulking Ranger Officer gave the British a win. A very enjoyable, simple set of rules which the players picked up within the first turn. Easy to use army lists are provided to cover the period of the French Indian Wars through to the War of Independence. There are rules for canoes, hidden movement, setting fire to buildings, weather and civilians, none of which featured in this game. I really recommend them for large scale skirmishing in North America in the 18th Century.

4 comments:

  1. This is fantastic, Matt. Thanks for posting this with the descriptions and explanations. I look forward to more reports and photos.

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  2. Nice review and report. the pictures are good and the table look great

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  3. Sounds like it was a fun game, and the figures and table look great. But British Rangers spending the battle in hiding? Oh, the shame and dishonor of it! :)

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  4. Haven't the rules yet, but what a great, concise and informative game write up. You really explained some of the things I've read about online. Thanks! Dean

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