Category Archives: Boardgames

Colonial Diplomacy – SAD Campaign Turn 2

the delayed 1872 turn results are now available.  I believe that I’ve captured the turn orders correctly, but if you spot any serious mistakes place let me know before Saturday.

I believe that everyone captured at least one additional supply area, though some acquired somewhat more.  Would you all please sen me the unit type (army or navy) and the location where the new units will start from by the end of Saturday if possible.


Russia +1 (Seoul)

France +2 (Canton & Bangkok)

Ottoman +1 (Persia)

Dutch +2 (New Guinea & Sarawak)

Japan +1 (Formosa)

China +1 (Mongolia & Assam, but lost Canton)

Britain +5(Sudan & Karachi & Bengal & Kashmir & Malaya)

Colonial Diplomacy – SAD Campaign Turn 3

There were a smattering of conflicts as the empires met in South East Asia.  China, France, and Britain all testing the others resolve along the Chinese borders.  Elsewhere Britain continued to paint the map pink (or dark blue in this game).

Elsewhere we saw France move into the Philippines and Russia managed to secure Fusan and mobilised in Central Asia.  The Ottomans moved back in to secure Shiraz and advanced into Romania.

If you see any errors please let me know and I’ll endeavour to correct them Friday.  I hope to have the map updated Friday as well.

Turn due;

17th December (turn 4 1876) – Supply turn

28th December (turn 5 1878)

Remember that next turn will have a ‘Military Adjustment Phase’ (supply point) at the end of the turn.  Please remember that you only gain control of new areas for 1874/1876 if you hold them with units at the end of 1876. (see 8.2 Control of Colonies)

Results update edit to reflect Japan fleet bounce back from Yellow Sea

Colonial Diplomacy – SAD Campaign Turn 1

1870 saw the opening moves of the war in the Orient.  Most players have sought to capture the many neutral supply points around the map, though France has decided that going on the offensive from the outset is the way to go with the capture of Canton from the Chinese.

Most player orders were successful with the exception of the British and Dutch fleets bouncing from the Java Sea.

If you see any mistakes on my behalf please let me know so that I can make the appropriate corrections before the next turn.

Many thanks to everyone getting your turns back to me ready for Monday.  I appreciate that there were many teething problems, but that is only to be expected.  I intend to provide ‘interpretive’ support for your orders for the next turn, so hopefully I’ll catch the funny moves again.

The next turn is 1872, and is a supply turn.  This means that any new supply points which you have captured AND HOLD at the end of this turn will enable you to build new units.  Please read section 8.0 the Military Unit Adjustment Phase for the rules but the main points to be aware of are that for each point you hold on the map you can support one military unit.  If you hold more points than you have units on the board then you may build additional units (conversely if you hold less then you will have to remove units).  New units can only be built on your original starting points, and remember that any region can only ever hold one piece, so even if you are allowed to build units, you won’t be able to if all of your starting points are occupied.

Hopefully I’ll have a map ready soon, but in the meantime here are the player orders and results.

Colonial Diplomacy – SAD Campaign

The date is 1870 and an ominous thunder is heard in the East.
To all Colonial Empires. The game will kick off tomorrow, with the first turn order submissions being due by Monday (3rd October) evening. Hopefully this will give Dan enough time to settle in…
As this is the first time of playing for many of you I am happy to accept both long hand orders as well as the normal game short hand. Please try and avoid any ambiguities, and always be specific about who and where you are providing support to. I will endeavour to be helpful.
The special rules for the Trans Siberian Railway and the Suez Canal are in play for this game.
If you have any questions please let me know. 

Kickstarter Update – New Wargames and Boardgames outlook

This is just a round up of some of the wargames and game stuff on Kickstarter which caught my attention this week.


Spartan Games: Universal Modular Wargames Terrain

On the wargames front there is a new terrain system from Spartan Games (of Dystopian Wars fame).  This is a modular scenery system using plastic bases and up-rights which have printed card inserts slotted in to make the floors and walls (and doorways etc.)  The designs cover a variety of themes including medieval, sci-fi, modern,  and a ‘woodeny’ western/mine theme.  Prices don’t looks like they will break the bank.  Coupled with resin and acrylic upgrades as well as the ability to stack these units into multi-level features looks like this will offer a wide modular system.  My reservations were the look of the modular up-rights but Spartan seem to be responding to this feedback and the final solutions will be a lot more discrete and aesthetically pleasing.  My other concern was the amount of time it would take to set up the terrain for an evening  club game.  If you have appropriate storage I suppose most of the set-up could be prepared in advance.  Worth a look with basic sets really starting at £50 for 3′ by 3′ and £70 for 4′ by 4′.


Space Cadets Away Missions

This is a miniature heavy retro sci-fi game with the players taking on the role of ships crew exploring space. The game has a starting entry of $60 which also seems to cover worldwide shipping as well.

From the Kickstarter page;

Space Cadets: Away Missions is a cooperative, scenario-based, tactical action game set in the Golden Age of science fiction. In this game, the third standalone title in the Space Cadets franchise of cooperative/team space-themed games from Stronghold Games, players take on the roles of adventurous human spacemen (“Rocketeers”) who explore UFOs, acquire alien technology and fight hordes of hostile extraterrestrials.’


Don’t Turn Your Back

This is a worker placement/deck building card game based in the Don’t Rest Your Head roleplaying game world.  Anticipate a cost of $70 ($40 for the game and $30 postage!)  there is also an ink-intensive Pn’P for $10.

This looks to be a very intriguing game and the Print and Play may be worth a look if you live outside the USA.


Among the Stars: Revival

This is an expansion game for the previously successful ‘Among the Stars’ game.  Whilst the funding arrangements do allow you to get the original game for $140 (along with a host of expansions and stretch goals) you can play the Revival expansion as a stand-alone game and only need to find $40.  Being European the postage is already included which is always a pleasant surprise given the horrific uplift which the US projects usually apply to their postage to the UK.

From the Kickstarter page

Players use a card drafting mechanism, select location cards, place them on their station, and score victory points according to where in the station they place them. Construction lasts 4 rounds and the player with the most points in the end wins the game.

The rules can be taught in less than 5 minutes and each game lasts approximately 30 minutes.


The Great War

This is a a new venture by The Plastic Soldier Company along with Richard Borg to produce a World War One boardgame based upon the Memoir’44 game engine (also see Battle Cry – ACW, Commands and Colors Ancients, Command and Colors Napoleonics, and possibly Battle Lore).  The game should be sound as it’s been tried and tested in multiple formats already, and the figures will be coming from The Plastic Soldier Company so the components should be of a high standard.

Funding really starts at around £60 for the game (you can fund a host of T-Shirts and miniatures for less).  The stretch goals don’t look particularly sexy and I’m unsure how the £60 fares against what the final commercial price will be but worth a look all the same.



Revisiting some old homemade board games – part 2

I keep revisiting the notes which I’ve made over the years to make sure that I’ve captured the various theme aspects which I wanted to reflect as well as to try and ensure that any rule mechanism used sits well with the theme.  We’ve all played games where a mechanism is used within a game which doesn’t seem to make much sense in the light of the theme being played.  How successful I am in this respect remains to be seen.

My base premise is a mini-wargame driven by a high level worker placement mechanism.  The game should handle 4 players well, but cater for between 3 to 6 and reach a successful conclusion in about 90 minutes.  I want the game to give the players sufficient decision points to feel as if they are playing the game (as opposed to being driven along by the game and having little input) and at the same time I want it to be fun – which is fairly fundamental.  I have played many games

Revisiting some old homemade board games – part 1

I suppose every wargamer has some rules in them, and every boardgames has a boardgames in them as well.

I’ve started reworking some old Mega City One Block War games I put aside a few years ago.  I’m working on a game where each person controls a block during the Block Mania incident and looking to cause as much damage on the other blocks before the judges intervene.

I appreciate that there is a game which covers this theme which came out over 25 years ago called Block Mania (with its expansion Mega Mania).  However this game has been long out of print, and when played took quite a long time to play especially with three or more players.  I wanted a game which had the same theme but was a different game which was a lot shorter (target 1.5 hours for 4 players), was fun without being overly complicated and had a lot of replayability.

I want the board to be able to fit easily on a 3 foot wide table, so have been playing with a playing area of 2 foot square though may extend it slightly to 2 foot by 3 foot (60cm by 90cm).  This way there will be space for the inevitable drinks as well as clutter for cards, rules etc. on a small kitchen table.

I was also looking for a modular system for the board to cater to the re-playability aspect.  This could be addressed in a multiple of ways;

  • simply have a double sided board
  • 4 large double-sided boards (approx 1 foot/30cm square)
  • free moving hexes (4 inches across)
  • multiple smaller squares (approx 4 inches square or 10cm)
  • Deck of cards for locations which are drawn from the deck to create the map.

Currently I’m playing around with the 4 inch square solution as it’s relatively easy to manufacture.

I also wanted the game to have various elements from the Judge Dredd stories, especially if they were relevant to the Block Mania theme.  To this end I looked at including;

  • City Def,
  • Gangs
  • Fatties
  • Judges

No doubt some will stay and new ones may be added.

I’m using a fairly basic worker placement mechanism to drive the core mechanics for each player with event cards causing the mayhem at a higher common level.

The danger of these type games where there is so much thematic ‘history’ available is to try to include everything into the one game.