Its been a while since our last post but the time has not been wasted. The ‘first draft’ of the dark age skirmish rules are now in a playable state and hopefully readers will be able to down load from this blog.
So what have we learned so far?
Well, the plan for some something short and snappy for an evenings game when you aren’t really in the mood for the intensity of a full on battle seemed to work; our last session lasted around 2 hours including chit chat and rules discussion for the next iteration and a definite result was achieved.
The desire for a character building mechanism (points system) that limited the size of the band and gave a bit of investment in the characters was more successful than I hoped and has the potential for some deeper characterisation I think. The possibility of being able to add to a characters ability following a successful raid came up during play and so one task is to have a look at how some of the ‘pulp’ games go about this and see if there are any possibilities to work in.
The play sequence was a bit of a departure for the group with everyone dicing for the right to choose the order of play for that bound but once everyone got used to it the game really moved along and players had to think about where they wanted to be in the sequence.
Having morale for the band and morale for a warrior worked well enough for the games and could stay as is but I’m sure there is a missing ingredient there I just haven’t found yet.
The shooting achieved the objective of being fairly ineffective which was good and after a couple of sessions we all knew what was worth working out and what was not. I think I need to work on reducing the factors but……
Movement was simple as planned although having ho penalty for running did mean you could run forever and have no ill affects – to be remedied! The movement of NPC’s has been assumed for now, mainly because I didn’t want to get bogged down on how fast a cow moves compared to a pig but needs must I guess so another task for the next draft.
Combat. This worked well. Having the warrior have his shield smashed, then his armour reduced before finally taking wounds made the melee’s last a bit longer than ‘one minute your wounded the next minute your dead’ and it did make players think about who they were going to take on.
So what next?
Well for now were going to play with the rules as is and if any of you give the rules a go then please post a comment or tweet us. We did have the thought that the base rules could be used as an armature for building onto for other periods where the hand to hand is the thing – classic medieval and crusades were discussed and I was thinking TYW mercenary bands (who’s seen the film ‘The Last Valley’, one of Michael Caine’s best and full of scenarios), maybe a bit of fantasy? but I don’t think we have enough background knowledge to attempt this with skill.
Anyway, enough for now. We’ll be at Partizan if you want to chat. Oh, yes, a quick play sheet might be useful!