J. R. Tracy
We had nine gamers Tuesday night for wargaming, cardgaming, and gladiatorial combat.
David was interested in trying Nathan's VCS Salerno, so I took the Germans against his Allied invasion force. He blew me off the beaches without breaking a sweat (though I gacked a rule and bugged out of a couple positions a turn early). I headed for the hills and reconstituted my two 16th Panzer regiments to better hold the key road junctions, while bringing some Panzergrenadiers up from the south to threaten the American beachhead. Unfortunately, my counterattacks were met by the fury of the Royal Navy and I limped back toward high ground. By the time we called it, the German lines were coalescing and I had the edge in upcoming reinforcements, but Herr Fuchs was threatening to break out onto the Foggia map. From this point it looked like a contest between him exploiting off the beach head and my threatening his lines of supply.
Herr Fuchs pushes inland
On the next table, Scott and Steven whipped through four games of Netrunner. The first two were very tight, extended contests, while the next two were very quick knockouts. Both players enjoyed it - Scott has already weighed in with his thoughts on factioning but I'm curious to hear what Steven thinks.
Netrunner from low earth orbit
Dutch and Bill decided to commemorate Sharpsburg/Antietem with a couple fast-playing games. First they fired up the scenario from Battle Cry, with Bill taking the blue bellies. He hammered away at Burnside's Bridge to no avail, and eventually succumbed.
Burnside's Bridge - Battle Cry
They then pulled the venerable SPI Blue & Gray off the shelf, and played the same sides. This time Bill made better headway but Dutch's rebels were able to retain the town of Sharpsburg while hammering Bill's point units in a double pincer. The Union casualties and the Sharpsburg VPs were enough to generate another Confederate victory. Good fast playing fun.
Burnside's Bridge - Blue & Gray
150 years ago today - ish
Dr. Rob, GorGor, and Sean tried Sean's Spartacus: Blood and Treachery, the gladiator school game we played a few weeks ago. Rob drew Spartacus himself but it wasn't enough to stay in the running down the stretch. The game came down to a tie between GorGor and Sean, broken by a match between GorGor's Crixus and Sean's seven foot tall Theokoles. Theokoles was the stronger fighter, but Crixus used his speed edge to hamstring the giant and finally drop him, bringing honor and victory to the House of Pleva. This is a definite hit, a nice balance of intrigue and tactical combat.
House Batiatus throws down
We wrapped up with a five-handed game of the black box edition of Glory to Rome, using the Republic rules recommended for new players. Sean and Scott had an epic battle for the lead, with both deploying buildings with powerful effects. Sean, for instance, was able to play multiple role cards when leading or following, which allowed him to throw up buildings with alarming speed. Meanwhile, I was lazily floating down GtR River in an innertube, contemplating the clouds and occasionally playing a card in a feeble attempt to keep up. Between the new format, the new colors, and the new buildings, I just wasn't in the same county as the rest of the table. When we ran out the deck, Scott had 18 coins to 17 for Sean and 16 for GorGor, but Sean also had a Statue completed for another three points, giving him the win. I like the new buildings and find the new art attractive but less functional than the original; the playmats also fall short in my opinion. I didn't care for the resource-rich, 'easy play' (two roles for a wildcard) Republic version so I'd like to try the Imperial game next time out.