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Sunday, 31 January 2021

Ghosts of Projects Past #3

 One month into this year 2021 and nothing really to show for it, though I am slowly clearing a few bits off the painting table, those figures that have been hanging around for months (years?), gathering dust.. As such, I thought I'd unearth something from the past to fill a bit of space on the blog.

I've recently been reading a tome entitled Hawk and Moor. It's a rather entertaining read about the appearance of Dungeons and Dragons (the beast that spawned a thousand RPGs); this reminded me that a while back (2019, remember, a time before the pox...?) I had thrown together, and was experimenting with, a little skirmish game using the D&D combat method. Gary Gygax, co-creator of D&D, had himself been interested in representing a single figure as one person in tabletop wargames and had featured such combat in Chainmail, the medieval rules co-authored with Jeff Perren. I wanted something a bit simpler that could be on just a single page. Gygax et al had played their medieval games using Elastolin figures, so my first try was with larger figures too.



A pair of Russian made (?) "Knights" fought a couple of Orcs (played by Dark Alliance Trolls) in the initial trial. The pics aren't great as it was a bit of a dark day.

One of the ideas I wanted to use was to have character figures (Heros) who would have better statistics than the average chap and who could gain "experience" in an RPG kind of way, improving their performance perhaps...

As the rules were based on D&D they do call for multi-sided (funny) dice, though I guess most people have some of these. I called my rules Chainmailesque as I liked the name but it doesn't really reflect the Chainmail rules. The game is on a grid (needless to say) but could easily be played using normal measurements. I never got any further with it than the following. Perhaps I'll have another go at some point...

The Illustration was "borrowed" from the 3rd edition of Chainmail that included the Fantasy supplement which in turn led to Dave Arneson and Gary Gygax penning D&D.



Incidentally, I named these two Keeper Bernard and Keeper Simeon, though I'm not sure what they kept; certainly not the Peace by the look of them.









20 comments:

  1. Those figures look great, and some great ideas.
    I stumbled upon a game called 'index card rpg' which seems to boil D&D down to its basics (yet again) but also adds a lot of good advice for rpg gaming.

    I also thought though, it had some great skirmish ideas.
    There is a free edition on drivethrurpg - it uses a banana as a measuring aid... what's not to like!

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  2. A banana! - good if you need to shoot round a corner
    I'll need to look up index-card-rpg

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    1. I've a few docs for it Jack. Email me at ducdegobin (at) gmail (dot) com and I can send through.

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  3. Nice looking rules sir,I reckon my newly painted dark age stuff combined with a heroquest board would be the perfect to try them out.

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    1. Thanks mate. You'll have to do a bit more work with them but it's a beginning!

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  4. Great figures and rules hope we see more.

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    1. Thanks! I've been painting a few 25mm "medieval" type figures so I may try these rules again with them

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  5. Your Russian knights look great. I like how you painted them. Where did you find the miniatures?

    Your rules looks very interesting. Maybe you find the time to develop them one day? Cheers, Karl

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    1. Thanks Karl. I bought them some years back on Ebay - they are made by Tehnolog and it's possible to get them on Amazon also. They do some good Fantasy figures - great for your boys!

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    2. That's a good idea. Are they 54mm miniatures? Hard or soft plastic?

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    3. Karl they are approx. 54mm and made of a medium density plastic (not hard and brittle but not too soft either!)
      Hope that helps

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    4. Thanks a lot! That sounds very good.

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  6. I really like the iodea of doing DnD (or any fantasy skirmish/adventure0 gamein 54mm !
    There are a host of figure manufacturers (mostly unknown) out there and I've come across the Russian figures before - they do many fantasy types !
    Figure manufactures, to my amazement, seemed to have ocvered just about every period and genre imaginable, in 54mm. I'm sure there are probably many DnD style rules out there as DdeG found - 've always said there's nothing Ido that's really original, soemone somewhere will have already done it!

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    1. Cheers Joe. You're quite right, there's nothing new. Even Gygax's Fantasy rules were preceded by others (see Jon Peterson's blog post here http://playingattheworld.blogspot.com/2016/01/a-precursor-to-chainmail-fantasy.html )

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  7. Playing on a grid keeps it in the tradition of DnD combat as typically played so maybe less like Chainmail but more like its descendent? I think the key for a game like this, is, even with advancement for lesser characters, to keep the hit points low. Two figures slugging it out round after round makes for fun theater of the mind, but not much is happening with the miniatures.

    Your pictures have me reminded me,too, that I've been meaning to get my 54mm figures out onto the table with The Quests of Brin the Barbarian.

    Cheers!

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    1. Good point John - in the test fight illustrated, the heavily armoured opponents did spend a lot of time bashing away at each other. I also tried with very lightly armoured figures (in 1/72nd scale) and had a much quicker game which was more rewarding, though less dramatic to look at!

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  9. The miniatures look amazing, and I must look into that Hawk and Moor thing ...I'm always interested in the history of D&D.

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