Mars Attacks

As you may already know, the BBC are doing a full series, Edwardian adaptation of H.G Wells classic The War of the Worlds.

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You can find a full report here:
http://www.denofgeek.com/uk/tv/the-war-of-the-worlds/56640/the-war-of-the-worlds-first-look-at-new-bbc-adaptation
Of course we published a genre pack for this some time ago, which you can find at the bottom of this page:
https://theministryofgentlemanlywarfare.wordpress.com/in-her-majestys-name/

 

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For King & Parliament!

I have always had a fascination with the English Civil War, having had a brief flirtation with a reenactment group back in the day (the 80’s), and being in love with 17th century history in general. So when this was announced I was all ears…

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If you are thinking the cover looks familiar, it is because we share a layout artist – Millsy from Cobalt Peak Design.

‘For King and Parliament’ is a simple set of wargames rules for the Civil Wars in England (and Scotland and Ireland) of the mid-Seventeenth Century.

Written by our good friend Simon Miller, and ECW afficionado Andrew Brentnall, they use mechanisms that will be immediately familiar to players of the popular ‘To the Strongest!’ ancient and medieval rules.

Simon, and his Companions, have been seen at shows the length and breadth of the land putting on ‘To the Strongest!’ demo games that are famous for being 20+’ long and featuring thousands of 28mm pikemen. Yet the game only take 2-3 hours at most (with stops for tea and scones along the way).

This year we can expect less pike, but many more gorgeous banners, as they take to the shows once more, but with the forces of the honorable Parliament or the dastardly Tyrant Charles. I, for one, am really looking forwards to seeing them.

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Did I say less pike? Hey, look at the banners!

You can find Simon’s blog, with many more details here:
https://bigredbat.blogspot.co.uk/2018/03/for-king-and-parliament-is-in-shop.html?spref=fb

 

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Salute 2018 – our stand location

This year we are right at the back opposite Britannia Miniatures, and not far from the seating area.

Salute 2018 Stand Location

We shall be running at least two Thud & Blunder participation games as well as displaying the rest of our games and welcoming back Mark Byng with his updated IHMN Boardgame.

Please drop by to say hello, have a chat or a game and, if you should feel so inclined, drop off some cake 🙂

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The Ministry’s show schedule 2018

Anyone bringing Craig cake will be made a member of the ministry’s Legion d’Honneur.

The show season is about to really kick-off, so we thought that we would share our current schedule with you;

* Fiasco is still to confirm, but the rest are on.

This year we shall be touring with between one and three different Thud & Blunder tables for your delight and delectation. Most games take 30-40 minutes, which includes teaching you all the rules you need to know, and are for two players. We regularly have players as young as eight beating their parental units into the dust.

IHMN Gothic at Barrage 2017

We are always happy to take time and chat with you players, tell you about upcoming publications, and even settle rules queries (though all statements by me have to be ratified by my Principle Private Secretary – i.e. Charles).

If there is an important show that we are missing please let us know. It may not be too late to fit it in.

We hope to see you, and our band of regulars, at one of these shows this year.

Note that Dave and his stalwart Coggers shall also be at a lot of shows running IHMN and other splendid games. His stripped down IHMN games are a joy to behold, so keep an eye out for him under the COGS banner :D.

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A Blood Eagle AAR from Anatoli’s Games Room

One of our many players, Alexander, has blogged a splendid battle report, which we would like to share with you. You can find it here:
http://anatolisgameroom.blogspot.co.uk/2018/02/forest-denizens-raiding-viking-hamlet.html

Here is a little taste of it:

anatoli 1

Now that folks, is a Troll!

“Caroline and I played two games of Blood Eagle yesterday, it was the first time I’ve properly played the rules. Blood Eagle is a skirmish game that lends itself well for campaign gaming, and it features a bunch of folklore/fantasy elements as well.

“It did however not feature the exact type of profiles that I needed for trolls and goblins so I had to make my own unit profiles using the excellent unit and item creator within the game. I think I nailed the stats for the forest dwelling creatures quite well, and they were pretty balanced with the tweaked Viking villagers and champion we used for our 250pts game.”

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Zombini is coming!!

Being the report of a battle between and betwixt Charles and my good self.

Mechanics

  1. The Setting

The pleasant little town of Bramlinghame.

  1. The time

About eleven of the clock on a Wednesday, market day.

  1. The Scenario

A simple seize the objectives game. Five counters each marked on the bottom with a loot value: 0, 0, 5, 10 & 15 points.

These were mixed up and placed across the middle of the town, equidistant from the two warbands

  1. The Purpose

The purpose of the game was to playtest an encounter between a magic-heavy warband and one with very little magic.

To this end, Charles brought out his Necromancer, the Great Zombini and I deployed my brave City Watch.

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The picturesque little town of Bramlinghame

“Zombini is coming!”

For a moment, everything stopped in the marketplace as the news sank in. Zombini the mad! Zombini the necromancer! Then chaos, as every living soul deserted the streets and barricaded themselves into the houses, shops and inns.

Well, not every living soul. Gertcha, the witch’s cat, was unperturbed and remained to complete his morning ablutions.

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The Market Square is deserted, all but for Gertcha, the Witches’ cat

Down at the Watchhouse, a breathless urchin relayed the news and Captain Quentin Querolous assembled his men. Pugh snr, Pugh jnr, Sgt McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble, and Grubb all stood in a neat line across the yard.

Dibble and Grubb had brought Gnipper and Gnasher, their mastiffs, from the Watch Kennels.

The venerable Father Ted soon joined them, shaking not from fear, but delirium tremens. The Watch had a limited budget and often had to take what they could get in terms of magical support.

Despite his condition, Father Ted had divined that the wicked Zombini was after three small chests of magical powders. Three small chests in a market full of such merchandise. Perhaps the noble Watch would have time to deny Zombini his prize.

On the edge of town Zombini stood waiting for the streets to clear. Beside him were his adept Kid Davver and novice Cemetery Sid. He threw a hand full of small bones onto the ground and a few moments later three loyal skeletons clawed their way up through the earth. Abel and Bravo were armed with swords and boards, but Chopper had a fearsome, if rusty, great axe.

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The Great Zombini and his minions!

The game began with Zombini and his cadaverous company approaching from the north-west, down Back Lane, avoiding the High Street and market square.

Capt. Querolous split his men into three groups and approached from the south with all due speed. Dibble and Grubb, with Gnipper and Gnasher, came up Back Lane on the left. Sgt McGrew took the Pughs up the right along Penny Lane, and the Captain, accompanied by Father Ted and Cuthbert, marched brazenly along the High Street to reassure the populace.

It became apparent that Zombini was playing a cautious game, so Dibble and Grubb unleashed the hounds, who dashed forwards to discomfort Zombini and Kid Davver. Charles did seem a little surprised at the incredible speed of the Mastiffs who, at a full run, can cover 18″.

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Unleash the Hounds!!

 

Zombini sent Abel, Bravo and Chopper forwards to engage Dibble and Grubb, while peppering them with fire bolts, spectral darts and fireballs. It must be said that Charles die-rolling during this period was abysmal and required several dice to be expelled from his service (and across the kitchen). The last die he chose, wisely decided to play ball.

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Dem bones, dem bones, dem dry bones!

On the High Street, all was quiet, and Querolous lumbered forwards at his full speed of 6″, his men easily keeping pace with him. While in Penny Lane the Pughs sprinted forwards and seized a small chest, only to find that it only contained fine pipeweed, not magical powders. Sergeant McGrew was summoned to join his Captain on the High Street leaving the Pughs to their own devices…

 

Over the next few turns Dibble and Grubb managed to find two chests (only one with magical powders in) but then succumbed to magical and skeletal attacks, Grubb having spent at least two turns on fire. Gnipper and Gnasher kept the Necromancers back, but failed to drag them down as ordered.

By the time The Captain and his trusty sergeant reached the scene, having plodded through the marketplace, all that was left to greet them were Abel, Bravo and Chopper. By this time, Dibble had been turned into ‘ZomDibble’ by Zombini and was heading north carrying a chest, which Zombini had acquired by using Teleport to snatch it from my fallen guardsmen.  Zombini had also successfully cast Beastmaster and turned Gnasher into his own loyal doggo. The Captain had sent the much quicker Cuthbert up the High Street to outflank the necromancers.

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Charles targeting yet another fireball! You will note from the counter that Grubb was already aflame at this point. The poker counter is a chest (the contents of which is marked upon the bottom in pencil).

While this was all going on I had completely forgotten about the Pughs. A tall building actually shielded them from my view and all the events on my left flank had distracted me. I can only assume that they had been sampling the pipeweed in the chest they had found (and ignored the second chest only yards from their position).

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“Have you got your pipe Dad?”

In the next couple of turns the Captain showed his mettle, despatched the remaining skeletons and weathered a veritable storm of magical firepower. Father Ted was felled by a magically-targeted fireball from Kid Davver, without ever really using any of his own powers in anger. The Pughs got their act together and seized the third chest, but then got caught by Zombini who teleported in to relieve them of their loot. Pugh Jr was felled, and only the intervention of the noble Captain, kept Pugh Sr heading for the Watchhouse. ZomDibble managed to get a chest off the northern edge of the board and back to Zombini’s secret lair.

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The Battel of Fishmonger’s Alley. Note Father Ted, lying down on the job. To the rear ZomDibble, chest in tow, was beginning his eternal service to he new lord – Zombini.

The Sergeant and Gnipper made a nuisance of themselves, and kept Kid Davver and Cemetery Sid busy on Back Lane. The Sergeant did make a last minute attempt to get back to support his Captain, but to no avail.

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“Listen up son, are you going to come quietly, or sliced up like salami?”

The game ended with me winning the initiative and running Pugh Sr off the table carrying two small chests. This was due, in no small part, to Querolous and Zombini fighting each other to the death. Successful post-game survival checks ensured that both of them will live to fight again.

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Fighting to the last! Songs will be sung to Pugh Sr’s courage (and loot transporting ability).

Conclusions

Despite Charles’ warband having total magic superiority, and casting more spells than a witches’ convention, the game was still fairly well balanced.

Charles lost none of his junior spell-casters during the game and did send one of my watchmen off the board, as a zombie, carrying his loot, but I managed to pin him down enough to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat on the very last turn.

The mastiffs, in particular, proved their worth. Their speed and tenacity allowed my men to close on the objectives and keep the spell-casters at longer ranges. You will be seeing them again (I have three of them).

At one point I had two men knocked down, two others on fire, and it looked like Charles was going to romp home. But courage (i.e. great pluck rolls), and perseverance won out in the end.

Teleport is a very nasty spell…

Acknowledgements

All the buildings were Dave Graffam paper ones. I just love the textures and details he puts into them.

The board was the one you would have seen at shows being used for the IHMN Gothic participation game.

My City Watch was recruited from the Reaper Bones collection, and yes, I am going to replace the bendy plastic spears with metal ones. Captain Querolous is an Essex miniatures Knight from the 1980s. I painted them all myself, I shall blame no other.

Charles figures are all certified antiques from his vast collection. Kudos to anyone who can name them and their manufacturer’s.

More play test reports will be featured here in the coming weeks, as we smooth out the wrinkles, and weed out the game breakers. Please feel free to ask questions about the game.

 

Posted in Battle Reports, Thud & Blunder | 6 Comments

I hear the sound… of distant drums!

We began play-testing Thud & Blunder last autumn, when Charles invited Duncan, Billy and myself to Castle Murton.
As you can see from the photos that accompany this piece, we set up a small walled town in the Castle’s Orangery.

The Town Gate
Most of the buildings are Dave Graffan’s splendid print and build card ones, and the scatter terrain is a merry mix of commercial and scratchbuilt stuff from my collection.
At the core of Thud & Blunder you will find the rules we developed for Blood Eagle. Quite a few changes have been made to allow us to use the full panoply of High Medieval warfare, and include all the fantasy people want.

A secret meeting
When the game is complete, which we estimate to be in the Autumn(-ish), you will be presented with a toolkit that will allow you to deploy your warbands/retinues in the streets of packed towns and cities, the ruins of ancient empires, in taverns and alleyways, underground in crypts, catacombs and magnificent dungeons, at sea, in the air and across the high wilderlands.

The Market from above
We will be including the widest range of warbands/retinues of any book we have so far published. In addition will be a an incredible toolkit that will allow you to create your own unique forces, and develop them and their characters to become legends.

Market day 3
The advantages of this approach mean that you can either play it straight out of the book, or try your luck in Llankhmar, Waterdeep, Kings Landing, Zamora and Minas Tirith.
So, until it is complete we shall be sharing design notes, warbands and battle reports here on the blog and announcing each on in our FB pages and other fora.
Feel free to comment and share your ideas. Tell us what just have to include, and we shall respond with what we can 🙂

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