Thursday, 14 April 2016

Getting The Ball Rolling

Every great, mediocre and poor story has to start somewhere, and mine (whichever of the three it turns out to be) was with my Morts facing off against my buddy Mike's Engineers, in a 3v3 demo game using the starter boxes. Join me for an 80's montage of  my first couple of months of play, complete with a theme tune which is required to be played on repeat whilst you read this article!

For my first outing I expected a quick 30 min intro, followed by a slightly more tactical follow up game in the same evening. Our match ending up taking a whopping two and a half hours, and ended 8-12 to the Cogs! On reflection we probably would have gotten more out of the game by playing to only six, hindsight and that. I was also thoroughly enjoying kicking Salvo around the pitch, like a kid on the street with a discarded can.

The next chapter in my emerging saga took place the following week against my same mechanical opponent, but this time it was 6 v 6, and I was ready! Well, I say that, I'm going to presume I was ready; I don't remember this match at all, and have no idea who won or what happened. The only thing I do remember is that like the 3v3 it took a long while, and the finesse required to play this game well was starting to become apparent.

For me, reflecting back now, these two games highlighted just how difficult Guild Ball can be to learn without a guiding hand, and only your knowledge of the rulebook and a few You Tube videos to watch. They were still fun, don't get me wrong, but for a game with only two objectives (score or stomp) it has a whole lot of book keeping and moving pieces! I'll be coming back to this in the future, and giving my opinion on how best to begin your foray into Guild Ball when I am little more experienced in the game.

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Kicking Off

Kraken, displaying my burning desire
for Guild Ball
For a long time I've been looking for a second game, for a little minx of a mistress with which to spend every other weekend cheating on the game I'm married too, for a game and system which is different enough to my number one, and cheeky enough to keep my interest keen. The 'ball and chain' game in question is Dropzone Commander, a 10mm hard sci-fi and incredibly tactical wargame (for those interested, check out my other blog Orbital Bombardment), and sometimes I feel like I truly am in a relationship with it. Over the last two years I have played the game pretty much every week, as well as attending and hosting tournaments and helping play test with Hawk Wargames.

But all I've had over this period is Dropzone, and after a while every move and play becomes a little similar. Any game replayed over and over again, much like a delicious cake which has been left out over night, becomes stale, no matter how good it was at first. Imagine hanging out with your friends every night. That's right, those mouthy scroungers. Every. Single. Night. You get the idea.

My group have flirted with alternative games, perhaps even dated a few, but nothing ever got too serious. I went on a few dates with Infinity, but found I didn't have the time to invest to get to know it seriously enough. A serious contender for my heart was Bushido, but this game has a serious gambling addiction (the combat mechanics), and that just isn't for me.

There was a system which had caught my eye though, and every time I found myself wanting to flip a table at Dad-wing, or partake in a massive strop as I lose a model to a roll of two dice in Bushido, the thought of it was lingering in the back of my mind; Guildball.