Sunday, 31 July 2016

Last Era Expansion 5 - Sea Elves!

The Fifth expansion pack for Last Era provides the following features:

Background information on the Sea-Elves.

New rules for using the units in the pack and a new type of demoralizing missile fire available to all armies.

The Storm the beaches mission objective.

Two new battle conditions to test your troops under.

The Sea-Elf army list, providing 3 new warbands and 2 individual figures:

*Sea-Elf Marines are hard-hitting infantry with excellent morale.

*Sea-Elf Raiders are adaptable skirmishers, capable of harassing enemy troops with missile fire.

*The Sea-Elf Vanguard provides closely ranked spearmen, trained to fight in formation.

*To aid your new troops, employ the Sea-Elf Warsinger, a new spellcaster capable of rallying troops or granting extra actions to nearly figures or the Sea-Elf Tactician, a new sergeant-type figure to help reinforce a melee.

As always, Last Era expansion packs are intended to be bite-sized, providing fun new gaming ideas for the cost of a candy bar.

Quick update. Last Era.

The Elven Thorn-Guard warband will not fight alongside Orc and Forsaken troops.

This update will be official in 1.09 but with the new expansion on the way, you may as well bring it in now.

Other units that can potentially include elves are not as discerning. You may theorize about that as you see fit :)

Friday, 29 July 2016

Last Era 1.08

Last Era has been updated with two new terrain types: Tangled terrain (perfect for jungles) and Treacherous (suitable for anything that could kill troops moving through).

This brings the rules up to version 1.08.

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Blast Pistol expansion 6

The sixth expansion pack for Blast Pistol adds the following new features:

Background info on Fringe weapons technology.

Optional rules for vehicle critical hits and weapon malfunctions.

A new "tank hunt" mission type, focused on destroying (or preserving) your Big models.

Two new battle conditions, allowing you to fight in a field of unstable, exploding crystals or with the two sides trading preparatory fire before the battle begins.

Five new units to provide you with fire support:
*K'Erin Tank Hunters allowing your alien warriors the use of a 4 "man" squad with a pair of fusion lances.
*Unity ATGM Teams providing highly accurate long-range fire against point targets.
*Morkian Mortar Teams shelling the enemy with their old-fashioned 55mm mortar.
*Soulless Gun Carriers , a bipedal Soulless combat module armed with a Gauss machine gun.
*Finally, Synapse Tech is proud to introduce their MK 9B Gun Droid, toting a heavy, repeating small arm and a multiple-launch rocket pod, perfect for infantry support or light vehicle attack.

Monday, 25 July 2016

Blast Pistol 1.08

Today's update adds the structure/building rules to Blast Pistol as well as adding a variant of the Claymore tank.

The Spatha features lower Toughness but slightly higher Movement Speed.
The main gun has slightly less punch but does not suffer an accuracy penalty when firing frag shells.

It's intended as a good middle ground (and about 20 points cheaper) for infantry support, while being able to hold its own against enemy armour if need be.

Sunday, 24 July 2016

Last Era - Why aren't weapons consistent?

A question that has arisen is - why aren't weapons consistent in Last Era?

In other words, two units can both have spears but function in different ways.

The reason is two-fold: First, a term like "spear" can encompass an awful lot of different things.
A group of dispersed skirmishers with short hunting spears and a group of densely packed troops with pikes are not at all the same thing, and I don't think their equipment would function in a universal fashion either.

Secondly, and more importantly though, Last Era is essentially character-driven.
"Character" in this case meaning the personality and flavour of our armies, rather than Lord Buttercup of Nowhere.

Each unit represents a particular aspect of the world they exist in, both through flavour text, special abilities and their troop profile.

This means that weapons are often reflected in other ways, such as a unit special rule, the basic Combat Skill of the unit or even its Toughness (if its able to help keep enemies at bay for example).

* * * * *

It also helps reduce the number of things a player must keep track of.
Last Era is a fairly simple game mechanically, but it does rely on unit special rules to spice things up.

Typically, a unit only has one special rule but on a battle field of 5 units on each side, that's 10 potential rules to remember.
If the weapons themselves add another rule on top of that, we're at 20 rules, exceptions or special cases. That's a lot to manage for a game billed at being quick and pick-up friendly.

Lastly, in many ways, it is not a significant question because units are armed in a specific manner, which seems to befit a more historical approach.
If you buy a warband of Illiryan infantry, they're armed with a certain weapon.
If there was an option to buy them with bows, they'd be Illiryan Archers or some other such unit instead.

Real-life medieval infantry could not be re-equipped on the fly, and I think good fantasy must maintain an element of medieval realism to remain believable.

Agree? Disagree? Let me know but either way, those are the justifications.

Saturday, 23 July 2016

The schedule! (and the next Powder&Bayonet expansion)

You may have noticed that there's a bit of a routine setting in.

Essentially, for the Living Games series, I have a schedule set up.
Each day involves either a blog post, an update or an expansion pack, spread across the different game systems, ensuring a steady progression of options and additions.

Today would be the Powder&Bayonet expansion but I am going to hold off just a touch longer, as Nate may have the second Foreign Legion pack in the works.

Appreciate your patience!

Friday, 22 July 2016

Powder&Bayonet 1.03 goes live

Structure rules added to P&B, along with two new options, one that makes morale checks a bit less frequent and a highly recommended "critical hit" rule for hand to hand fighting.

Go grab the new file from your download page in the Vault.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Blast Pistol expansion 2 unit overview

Today, I figured we'd do a bit of an overview of the units in the second Blast Pistol expansion.

This one is the mercenary special and all the new squads are professionals that operate under contract.
This means they aren't that gung ho, refusing to advance on the enemy when they are Rattled.
On the flipside, they can regroup for 1 action, which makes regrouping a viable option in hte middle of an engagement.

This helps give them a little bit of a more deliberate pacing on the battlefield.

Black Dragons
These guys are the "generic" mercenary outfit, armed for tactical roles and with good stats.
Their high toughness score suggests body armour. In my mind, I had many of the figures from GZG in mind but use whatever high-tech looking infantry you can think of.

On the tabletop, they are dependable, solid troops and a good alternative to Unity infantry for a baseline squad.
They lack anti-tank capability but the plasma rifle is very effective against "heavy infantry" types and can bother lighter vehicles if you get lucky.

Rage Lizards
Space fantasy is always popular and this unit is a good place for those figures.
Swords, shotguns and a high proportion of alien critters in their ranks, they are also well suited to conversion work and maybe a more ragtag appearance.

Profile-wise, they have decent speed even if a Toughness of 5 means they have to be a bit more cautious.
This emphasizes their use in boarding actions where they can advance in tight corners, without taking undue amounts of fire.
Do note that at +2, they will be outmatched by some melee troops, and consider using your shotguns to soften things up before getting stuck in.
A viable option is to engage in close range fire fights, using the power blades to fend off an enemy assault.

The limitation that they will not fight alongside precursors is a way of establishing a bit of universe-flavour.

Blood Storm
Another unit suitable for most any mid or high-tech infantry figures.
I prefer these to be a bit on the rougher side with large, obviously-imposing weapons. 28mm players may consider old Warzone figures.

They are decent close combat troops, especially against weaker enemies (which fits their reputation) though they are better suited to a mid-range firefight.
The heavy machine gun packs a significant amount of punch and allows them to see off enemy forces very well.

Bounty hunters
I must admit, old Necromunda figures were on my mind when designing this, but any "character" model works.
My own figures rely on a lot of old Laserburn guys for this sort of thing.

A big part of Blast Pistol is letting players build their own scenario through victory conditions, battle conditions and now by including particular models in an army.
The award for the bounty hunter isn't huge but then again, sometimes a game is decided by 10 points or less.

M32 Scout car
A generic armoured car that can be represented by a suitable figure.
Armoured cars aren't the most common scifi vehicle out there, so consider converting or repainting a ww2 or modern day design instead.

Many ww2 armoured car designs look pretty futuristic, especially if you jazz them up a little bit.

On the table top, the autocannon is useful against things like droids and big monsters but even small arms fire will put the vehicle at risk.
Use it cautiously in a stand-off role, taking advantage of the high movement speed to reposition yourself with only limited amounts of incoming fire.

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

A bit of a vacation and a Price of a Mile update

I am back from vacation so updates will resume at the normal pace.

Today saw the first update to Price of a Mile (also being a test bed for the building/structure rules that will go in the remaining games later on).

Tomorrow will be the first expansion for Price of a Mile.
Unless something drastic happens, it is 1914 focused.

Thursday, 14 July 2016

Powder & Bayonet - Section leadership

As written, the rules tend to ignore the question of low level leadership.
This was done for two reasons:

One, its simpler, because it lets us avoid most questions of tracking who gets hit by what.

Two, the role of low level leadership was mainly in dressing the ranks, ensuring everyone was doing what they were supposed to and herding stragglers back into the firing line, rather than dazzling displays of individual initiative.

Players who want a greater role to be played may opt for this option.
If you try it out, email me and let me know if you liked it and it'll be considered for a future update.

Section leadership
Each section must have one figure marked as their leader.

While the leader is alive, add +1 to all Morale test rolls.

Whenever a casualty is taken, roll 1D10 for each.
If a 1 is rolled, the leader was one of the casualties.

This causes the loss of the Morale bonus and the ensuing Morale test must be taken at -1.

Last Era expansion 4 - Monsters!

The fourth expansion pack for Last Era is all about monsters, adding 7 new monstrous creatures to the game along with background info on monster taming and origins and 2 new optional rules (Bonding monsters to a hero and monsters going berserk).

The new monsters are:

*Giant lizards, slow but tough.

*Hell drakes, an acid-spewing dragonkin.

*War bears, for when you just need a hug.

*The humanoid beast lord (great for minotaur minis)

*Battle Striders, a variant of the golem.

*Gargoyles, for all your rooftop needs.

*And the Water prowler for those of you who are afraid of the water.

As always, expansion packs are intended to be bite-sized gaming entertainment.

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Last Era 1.07 is here

Its update-day for Last Era and today you get no rules changes but 3 new units:

The War Champion is a non-hero individual fighter with decent stats and rerolls of combat dice in certain circumstances.

A new unit of highly skilled elven spearmen for a refined touch.

And if you like monsters,try out the griffon. Jump around the battle field, break faces and eat them.

Go get the new file :)

Monday, 11 July 2016

Price of a Mile. Battle of the Frontiers

In the future, there will be campaign-specific expansion for Price of a Mile, but for now, lets take a look at using the core rules to set up historical encounters.

The so-called Battles of the frontiers were a series of intense battles in August 1914, as the French struck into the occupied regions of Alsace and Lorraine as well as pushing towards German-occupied Belgium.

This was a terrible slaughter for the French army, incurring massive losses though the actions in Belgium did succeed in slowing the German onslaught somewhat.

The Enthusiastic recruit troop type is custom made for French troops in 1914. They move a little quicker and can shake off rattled status provided they're advancing on the enemy, while the lower Toughness score represents a general lack of fieldcraft.

For their German counterparts, I tend to rate them as a mix of regular grunts and fresh recruits depending on the forces in question, leaning towards the former.

Pick any individuals you like for your forces.
Personally, I don't tend to use War Heroes in the frontiers and Sharp Shooters aren't in vogue yet.
A mix of hardened sergeants (old gnarly prussians or french with some experience in the colonies) platoon officers and loyal corporals is perfect.

The only heavy weapons you are likely to find is the odd heavy machine gun.
At this stage of the war, machine guns were rather rare, with only 2 guns authorized per French battalion and malfunctions may reduce that even further.

A battle with purely riflemen can get a bit dull though, and we're looking for flavour, rather than solid simulation so feel free to support your platoon/company with a machine gun crew.

A better choice is to set up the French with a field gun while the Germans get a machine gun. This is a fun way of capturing some period flavour very easily and provides a good, asymmetrical battle.

The country has lots of hills and farmland. You can easily press your ww2 france terrain pieces into service. The area around the Argonnes is obviously heavily forested which can make for a tense battle.
Consider extending battles in dense terrain by another turn, as it will take a little longer to get to grips with each other.

Sunday, 10 July 2016

Blast Pistol expansion 5. The horde!

The fifth expansion pack for Blast Pistol introduces the dreaded Horde to the game:

An army of implacable foes from beyond the galaxy, turning the bodies of the dead into monstrous troopers and fighting with a fanatical zeal.

This expansion provides:

*Background information on the Horde.

*Rules allowing Horde troops to adapt their ability scores between battles.

*A new mission and two new battle conditions, all perfect for desperate stands.

Five new units:

The Horde trooper, devoted to their dark lords.

Slithering prowlers, overrunning your defensive lines with their razor claws.

Squads of infected, raised from the battle field to shamble towards the enemy.

Harbingers of the Horde, inspiring their corrupted minions to great feats.

And finally the dread colossus,a towering war beast ripping and tearing through the enemy line.

Blast Pistol expansions are intended to be bite-sized: A collection of new gaming bits for the price of a candy bar.

Saturday, 9 July 2016

Rules clarification

Applicable to all "Living Games" titles:

If a squad is split up in multiple elements, the single largest element is the "parent" and is not penalized.
If they are equal size, pick one at your leisure.

This may shift with each activation.

Examples, all from a squad of 6.

One group of 4, one group of 2. The group of 2 gets the penalty.

One group of 3, one group of 3. Pick which get the penalty.

One group of 4, two groups of 1 each. Both the small groups get the penalty.

Friday, 8 July 2016

Blast Pistol 1.07 is live

Small one this time:

*Another paragraph of background text.

*The explanation of how to set up scenarios is a little more elaborate now.

*One new individual figure added (The Unity Agent, granting a morale boost to friendly Unity troops and a penalty to enemy ones, traitors that they are!)

Go grab the download.

Thursday, 7 July 2016

French Foreign Legion for Powder&Bayonet

Fancy a trip to the scorching desert where only misery and death awaits?
Now you can, with Nathaniel Weber's help.
Expansion A for Powder&Bayonet contains a new scenario, special rules, 2 battle conditions and Legion/Berber army lists for your enjoyment.

As usual, just a dollar.
Buy here

Monday, 4 July 2016

Last Era Expansion A available. A??

With a one day delay, the promised Last Era expansion is available.
Why is it labelled A instead of 4?

Because it is the first expansion written by a guest writer, in this case the phenomenal Nathaniel Weber of "A Sergeant's War" fame.

This expansion delves into the ancient Saurian race, detailing 6 new units, new background information, a new scenario to play as well as a battle condition to go along with it.

Whether you want to battle it out for Crown Fragments, try to formulate a battle while your troops risk being trapped in time or simply want some primordial brutality, this will have you covered.

As usual, expansion packs are a single US dollar. This one clocks in at 7 pages.

Rules clarification. Morale and individuals.

Why do individual figures have a Morale score?
Isn't Morale checks limited to squads/warbands/sections?

No, they're not. It's just that the conventional method of forcing a morale check (a unit taking casualties) only applies to squads/warbands/sections.

Other rule effects can force a morale check and those apply to individual figures and big guys/models just as well as they do to squads.

Additionally, if playing in Man to Man mode, you will find that all figures can have morale checks forced by casualties.

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Blast Pistol expansion 4. Campaigns!

If you have been wanting a more detailed campaign system for Blast Pistol, check out expansion 4 here (yes, the url says 3, I goofed up when typing).

This is a "territory" style campaign the likes of which used to be popular in warhammer circles.
You start with a small army and a selection of territories that permit bigger forces to  be played.

As you fight battles, you will work your way up to a total of 10 territories, permitting rather sizeable armies to be fielded.

The campaign structure is intended to allow groups to arrange games with as little difficulty as possible.
Each player can play as often or as little as they like and there's three options included for multiplayer battles (2vs2 (or any other number), free for all and one player providing military aid to an outgunned player).


Powder&Bayonet 1.02 is live

Going forward, I'll compile these into a single post instead of being silly. I blame a lack of caffeine and donuts this morning.

The updates to P&B (and J) mirror those of the other two titles: Man to man mode, underdog bonus and a few other tweaks.

Last Era 1.06 is live

The updates here mainly mirror Blast Pistol (If I ever do a space-fantasy game, I suppose I can just shuffle the pages together and call it Blast Era)

Tweaks to victory conditions in the default pick-up scenario, man-to-man mode and several other little improvements.

Also a one page short story for your enjoyment, thankfully not written by yours truly :-)

Blast Pistol 1.06 is live

Version 1.06 is here bringing you:

*A new squad type (star wars-style battle droids) as a reward for exceeding 100 sales of the game.

*Victory conditions now include a small bonus for holding important terrain features.

*Bonus experience points for winning the game.

*Optional "man to man" mode for small games.

*Clarification of the Prospector unit ability.

*Underdog bonus if two players have uneven points totals.

Thank you for all your support and keep your eyes peeled for the weekend :-)