Sunday, 6 February 2005

Pestilence game pics

Just a quick heads up that there are now pictures up of the Te Wapen game [reported here earlier]( You can find them [here](

The innocent public is forewarned that we ourselves feature in some of these pics.


  1. Looks like a fun game! Nice pictures, nice figs (where did you get the elephants from?), too bad about the ugly players...
    I guess there must be a sound reason for it, but why do you use squares instead of hexes?

  2. Rudi,
    I'll let Phil tackle this in more detail (his squares, his elephants :) ), but in short: the elephants are plastic toys, and the staggered squares are a 'topological equivalent' of hexes. It seems. :)

  3. The elephants are high-quality plastic toys. I think they're from Schleich, a famous German manufacturer of plastic farm and jungle animals (and smurfs!). In Belgium, you can buy them as most specialized toy stores (Christiansen, De Krokodil).
    Why squares instead of hexes? They are easier to draw and measure, but this was only before I realized I could use Hoegaarden beer-mats for templates!
    In any case, it doesn't matter that much. A grid of squares, in which each other row is displaced half a square, gives exactly the same connections as a hex-grid. TO put it mathematically, they are topologically equivalent!
    The only difference is the tracing of line of sight. If you connect the centre-points of 2 squares, this line might intersect with a different set of squares than the corresponding hexes in the hexgrid. But then, I do not consider this a particular problem, since also in a hexgrid, the hexes intersected by a line-of-sight can be very counter-intuitive, or just a little corner cut-away. Squares just give you a few different idiosynchrasies, but playability is almost the same.

  4. Thanks for the info, guys!
    I've just finished the "beta" version of my colonial Battle Cry variant (we'll use 28mm figs). My main problem was that BC is based on the battlefield being divided in 3 sections, which is OK for ACW or WWII (M44), but slightly problematic for Darkest Africa or straight colonial with inbalanced forces(many native units, much fewer imperialists, so if you have to spread the latter over 3 sections...).
    I therefor scrapped the sections and color coded the units instead (red, blue and green). The cards now read: (e.g.) "move 2 red units" instead of "move 2 units on the left flank". I also replaced the symbols on the dice, using firepower instead of targets (infantry, cavalry, artillerie). The dice markings are: flag (retreat), shield (failure to hit), musketball, mini�ll and Martini-Henry bullet.
    The idea is that when firing a musket (or bow) you only score a hit with the musket ball, but with an obsolete rifle you hit with both the musket ball and the mini�ll and the most modern guns available hit with all 3 symbols (don't worry, saving throws and even return fire (1 die) are also in the running...
    I also added a deck of "event" cards for the Darkest Africa variant (lions, rhinos etc popping up). We'll have to playtest, of course, to see if anything needs to be finetuned...

  5. Oops, I forgot:
    "The dice markings are: flag (retreat), shield (failure to hit), musketball, mini�ll and Martini-Henry bullet" and crossed swords (hit for all weapontypes).

  6. Rudi,
    this sounds very interesting. How are you planning on making the dice? Attack an existing die with a Dremel or use tiny stickers or something?

  7. Interesting comments!
    For my fantasy rules, I did away with the symbols on the dice, but just used numbers. Thus, a unit might be hit at a score of '5+', or '4+', or '6+'. This works a bit better in fantasy, since it's more difficult to label everything as either infantry or cavalry or artillery. It could be done, of course, but using numbers gave the little extra flexibility. Also, natural rolls of '1's indicate retreat results.
    For the cards, the same problem arose (left, middle right flank). We now use an ordinary card deck, and only one card is being drawn at a time. The card color determines what army can move units, and the number indicates whether you can move 1, 2 or 3 units (2-10: 1 unit, J-Q-K: 2 units, Ace: 3 units). This means we do not have a player hand right now, as in normal Battlecry.
    Also, we do not have 'special action' cards. For the moment, I opted not to, because many fantasy units have special abilities as it is. Thus, the 'special moves' are transferred from the cards to the units, and the cards become very standard.
    I consider the cards as used in BC/M44 and the move/combat system as 2 different things. One is an activation mechanism (what units can you move in your turn?), and the other the system that prescribes how units, once activated, can act on the battlefield. In our system so far, I stick very closely to the move/combat system (with special abilities for units added), but the activation system is musch simplified.
    One of the things I want to try in a future playtest is to experiment with the activation sequence a bit, maybe along the lines of what Rudi suggested above.
    If anyone's interested in reading the current draft of 'Te Wapen', please let me know, and I'll send you the rules as a pdf file.

  8. to Robartes: you should know me better... I've already got the dice! I strated out with these blanks:
    and stickers do the rest!
    To Phil: I (partially at least) disagree with your statement that cards and move/combat in BC and M44 are not interlinked. I've done some wild experimenting with both games and their rules, but always had to return to steering as close as possible to Richard Borg's initial concept. Anyway, no matter you look at it, it's a great system giving us both (and many others) a great time and great ideas!
    One of my better (wargame...) investments last year was the purchase of an HP color-laserprinter; I admit with the sole purpose of being able to print gaming cards of at least the same quality as they come with the games!
    So far we've only been playing 15mm BC (a campaign is being run at TSA) and playtested the 15mm WW2 based on M44 (we're still painting the armies...). But now we can also start playing colonials (armies available in 28mm at TSA)! the 15mm BC games take 1 - 2 hours max; great for a clubnight and suspense is guaranteed to the very last minute.
    And, yes, a PDF file of Te Wapen would be most welcomed by my mailbox...
    If you're planning to be in Gentbrugge, please let me know; I'll burn the rules on a CD - it's not very practical to mail all the cards.

  9. Well, anyway:
    go to this site:
    Then type "Koplow - Bag of 12 Blank 6-sided Cube Dice" in the search window; you'll find what I bought...