6 February 2019

Roman RISK - First three days

The project I've been working on for a long time is off the ground. And it's a huge success with the kids at my school. All Roman RISK posts here.

For three days they been fighting a civil war, after the assassination of Caesar. The game has been running contentiously  from around 0830 in the morning to 1335, each day. Kids hanging out in there breaks, after school and as soon as the doors open in the morning.

It's been pretty hard to snap any photos, because I'm constantly running the gaming.

Been wanting to write up each day - but I've been hammered after hours of constantly having kids yelling in my face. Eager to play - it's great to tiring.

Various kids from the eight different teams will come, be set in line for a turn and make on off three options:

  • Move troops in their territory or move ships
  • Attack a territory with units from neighboring areas
  • Buy units or upgrades
This way when doing battles between multiple factions, they have to think about strategy. As they'll be last in line after moving troops, ready to attack later - leaving them vulnerable for opponents to bring in reinforcements or counter attack. 

The teams are following a single workshop for an entire day. And my great colleagues have made eight different workshops. We have: Roman history, gladiator food, perspective drawing of roman buildings, mosaics, roman math and numbers, graphic novels (of roman historic episodes or culture), puppet theater film. 

The kids are then award between 100-200 Denali depending effort, team work, made assignments etc pr day. 

Points are awarded for 
- 1 pr territory (land and sea)
- 2 pr important (laurel marked) territory ¨
- 5 for Rome (also giving 5 denarii three times a day)
- 2 pr temple build
- 1 pr senator bribed
- 2-4 for controlling an entire province (there's 13). Provinces also provide their points in bonus denarii three times a day. 

In the lead
A each break (two pr day) and at the end of the day, I've counted the points. Put them on a board for all to see. The teams have gone up and down. Making alliances to tip the leading team from the top post. Then to fall on each other afterwards, making constant shifting in placement. 

We've seen many different tactics. Some teams really on temples, senators and well defended territories. Some teams gain points from rapid expansion, going for easy territories. Some have gone for dominance at sea. And some have worked towards securing provinces.

The board at the beginning. All unclaimed territories were guarded between 1-3 barbarians (rolling d6 in fights). Two point territories and Rome were guarded by Praetorians (rolling d8 in fights). 

All the well painted boardgame pieces before the game got going. I've since added another 10 cataphracts and 25 legionaries to each team (only base coated in team colors).

 The Pyramids and Library of Alexandria (two point territories) guarded by Praetorians at the start of the game.

The end of Tuesday saw the black team (Cleopatra) in the lead with nearly 50 points. Running a rapid expansion war, the had lots of territories and controlled three provinces. Stretching from Cyrenica over Syria and all the way to the black sea.

The white team (Brutus) being in second place. Having secure Dacia and taking control of Rome (which was first conquered by orange (Cassius)).

Today saw a complete shift in placement. White (Brutus) started by getting battered in the north by Black (Cleopatra). Cleopatra having made alliances with many teams - but non wanted them to win and all broke them. Weakened, the white team (Brutus) saw themselves attacked by green (Marcus Antonius) and blue (Cicero). Both team wanting easy territories for themselves - been in the middle with points.

Orange (Cassius) beat black (Cleopatra) from Asia minor and is controlling the eastern part of the empire and the important ancient wonders there.

The grey team (Octavian) launched a fleet filled with troops. Tipping black (Cleopatra) from first place. Invading an ill defended Cyrenica and threatening Egypt itself. Forcing them to retreat and go on the defence. 

Meanwhile the yellow team (Lepidus) have secured all Spain and the three provinces there. 

So Wednesday saw grey (Octavian) and (Lepidus) fighting for first place at the Pillars of Hercules (Gibraltar). If one team could disrupt the other they would secure first place. Yellow being depended on points from controlling the province Baetica. Grey (Octavian) being depending on points from controlling all Mauretania. 

Red team (Pompeius Sextus) used these wars to secure all the middle of Africa. Numidia and Africa Proconsularis. 

Also interesting is the white (Brutus) being cut in half (controlling Italy and Rome) and the far easy of Dacia. But both green (Marcus Antoinus) and blue (Cicero) is massing troops to invade Italy and take Rome. 

It's been the best day yet. Lots of kids having found tactics, learned the game, planning and making ready for two more days of fighting. 

Video of Wednesday - beware the sound. 

31 January 2019

Roman RISK: The last pieces

I've been frantically washing, priming, painting, basing lots of resin pieces cast and donated by  Ramshackle Games. Also I finally got around to taking photos, that's gonna be used as part of the rules.

Check out all Roman Risk blogs here.

Photos are also going up on posters, for the kids to see what to pay for units, their attack and defence - and so on.

I didn't take photos of everything lined up because there's so bloody many pieces.

Really looking forward to get gaming now.

Legatus: General. Each team can buy up to 2 of these.

The testudo is a great little resin model cast and sculpted by Ramshackle Games. In the game it counts and fights as a regular Legionnaire. It's simply counter to show that many troops are on the same territory. We'll put a piece of cardboard next to it, showing have many troops it is.

The onager catapult is sculpted in 1:72 scale like the soldiers used in the game. I've base coated them in three different browns, giving a bit of difference in color on the map. Painted in no team color, to allow them to be used by any teams.

Catapults are not often used by themselves, as they have poor defence.

The quinquereme is the largest warship of the era. It's an expensive unit in the game, can transport many troops and fight well. Also painted in various browm, with interchangeable sails - to show team colors.

The liburnian is a smaller warship. Cheaper, less carrying capacity - but a good way to control water areas for points.

A small section of the huge amount of ships cast by Ramshackle. Both ship types are sculpted by Admiralty Miniatures.

I've painted up three sets of barbarians to put on the territories from the start. NPC enemies the teams need to conquer before fighting each other. I've also used difference browns for base coating these models.

Regular infantry.

Cataphract heavy cavalry for the teams.

Resin temple. Primed them white, letting a bit of the grey show through. This is a territory upgrade that will make the territory worth more points. Sculpted by Ramshackle Games.

Forts are another territory upgrade. They will make infantry models defend with a d8 instead of a d6 - making territories much more difficult to conquer.

Base coated with different browns and painted the tents with difference nuances of broken white.

Praetorian guards. NPC enemies occupying the two point territories at the game start. The defend with a d8, making the harder to kill.

Senators can be bought by the teams. They are worth a single point and can be moved around on the board. Idea is teams can also get many points by focusing on a small area, but plenty of temples and senators instead.

21 January 2019

Last Days: Three Player Game

We've played our first three player game of Last Days. The game played very well with three players, though it was of cause a bit slower. We did the game with a few modifications:
There's the aggressor and defender as normally in the phases. And a neutral, going second in each round.

You were not allowed to flee the battlefield with supplies, you had to leave with the model. This to not 'cheat out' on players still fighting on the map.

The game was once again between two semi experienced everyday hero groups and a trained group. The new player got 30 points more to build the starting list from. We used a bunch of my walking dead miniatures for the professional team.

The board
We set up a dense city center on a 3'x3' board. Using lots of terrain from my modern terrain collection. We devided the edge in 8 1'x1' areas for setup. We rolled off and then decided entry points based in that order.

Some supplies we're inside buildings. We added a few extra supplies and zombies because we were an extra player.

My team decided to enter the board in a tight group, trying to stay out of sight of both enemies. I have to models with the scavenger skill and the goal was for these to get some supplies. Another goal was to keep theader safe, to buy a new survivor for the group. 

The killer dog Toto and Duncan Atkins who found a riot gear armor at the prison earlier in the campaign. A very dangerous combination. We build a new model for Duncan after he found the cool gear.

An overrun blockade in the center of town.

This old lady zombie turned out almost impossible to kill during the game. Annoying first Bai Wu's team and then my own.

The traffic cones are bloody cool. Found a handful at a second hand store, with some other toys.

Frederick Lewis drew first blood. The professionals - acting like that - had a job to scavenge supplies. And that was all they planned. But then Frederick shot one of the pros and a hell broke loose.

Carla - with a vengeance! Also build a new model for my nurse (same head) as she's found a lot of cool gear and is a veteran now.

The entire team of Bai Wu advancing towards the gas station in the middle, exchanging shots with the professionals also charging the station.

I was terrified of the potential invincible Duncan Atkins and his riot gear armor. So it was a priority for my group to take him out, as soon as possible - we were heading for the same supply counter.

With some heavy noise making fire, he was quickly taken out of action.

Blam blam blam!

Before going down Duncan got a few shots in at Carla but she survived.

All the gunfire draws in a zombie, who's right a Dorothy's throat. The girl was about to climb a fire escape to a roof with supplies.

My leader Wade is hugging the walls and staying in cover, I needed him to be safe. He tried to support his team, but the lone zombie was hard to hit. With lots of knockback, it took Wade several turns of shots, walking backwards and reloading to bring it down.

A good Samaritan from the professional group, used to work at a free clinic, got swamped by noise drawn zombies from the start. He managed to hold out for the entire - but didn't do anything else than being bugged down by horror tests. 

The leader of the professional team is a cop sergeant and a kid has joined the group as well. All characters are from a hard part of town, ghetto like blocks. We make stories for all our characters in the game.

Firefighter Sam is great at getting around, he super fast with 8AP and he have a skill for extra movement as well. He's also good in a fight. So it's always a give and take, when should he leave the board with supplies.

The professionals on their side of the gas station. The Abraham character (a sarge in game) threw himself through the window to get some supplies on the inside. We made the broken glass cause noise.

Dorothy breaks away from the zombie and tries to climb to safety on a dumbster.

Having fought out a fire fight with another team, it's time to face all the zombies that have been drawn in from all the gun fire noise.

A professional have climbed a ladder to the roof of the gas station. An excellent firing position and there's supplies on the roof.

The hardcore old lady walker, causing trouble through the entire game.

After the firefight have left me the winner and Bai Wus companions withdraw, it's time to get the loot.

The professionals are about ready to extract, having caused enough retaliation damage to the people who drew first blood. But there's a lot of zombies to work through in order to get out.

Father Job taking cover by a police car. The priest had a good game and blasted down lots of zombies with his trusty shotgun.

The resilience of the good doctor was stunning, round after round surviving the horde. Even when a young cheerleader was taken down next to him, he kept fighting hard.

John former S.W.A.T. went on a mission across the board to get supplies from the school bus - after Bai Wu's crew bailed. I actually forgot about him for a few rounds - just standing there behind the bus. He got the supplies though and made it out.

The extraction of the professionals was very hard fought, but a decent amount made it out - and the remaining group members weren't hurt. But the group was forced to post all reaming members on guard duty at their refuge.

Another very good game of Last Days. The game works well with three players, and that's nice to know. Looking forward to the next game.