Thursday 17 May 2018

Maximillian 34 (Kind of Review)

Each to their own. And As I have been banging on about Dieselpunk for more than a year you might guess (correctly) that this is my cup of tea!

Ok what do you get? A full colour, soft back, stapled rule set 54 pages in all. 

Production: I would say a lot of time, effort and energy has gone into the production values of this set of rules. Which is not to say they are well padded with junk, however there are a lot of Photos and a lot of things that could easily have been condensed. (More of this later). The booklet when you pick it up feels of good quality and is a pleasure to flick though. Being stapled is not a bad thing it allows the pages to be turned very easily with no fear of it falling apart in your hands. Overall I do like the production, it is so much better than many rule books as it feels as if the whole thing was a passion project and not started just to take money from the gamer. Good Quality throughout the book.

Pictures: I am an old school wargamer who grew up on Table top Games rules. As such I like the whole thing to be about the rules. It is after all what I am paying for. As you can see to the right there is a lot of "wasted" space. The Contents and the introduction could quite easily be put o one page on the inside cover. and not 2 pages in. These are VERY Minor gripes though. The Pics of the minis are good and the minis well painted and overall the layout is fine. It has a nice mix of 1930's pics (mostly associated with either war or racing, seriously what else did we expect) Pics of minis, diagrams and film poster(for modern films set in the 1930's or 1930's style adverts. Overall the pictures do add to the rules But as they an take up 1/2 a page (or in the pages above 1/3rd of a page) I do wonder if they may have been better on the internet or just reduced in size. Again only a minor gripe as they are all relevant and do add some flavour to the rules booklet.

Mechanics: Yep how does it play? The answer is that the rules are simple. I mean that comment to be positive. They are so much easier than Car wars by Steve Jackson. Players are allowed to premeasure and are not forced to make abstract judgements about corners or distances. There is even a nice rule suggestion that anyone taking this too far buys the other players a drink. I am guessing NOT a Cup of water! Most of the mechanics revolve around a player rolling 2 different coloured d6, with more or less D6 depending on circumstances. With only 5's and 6's counting simply add the positive dice and take away the negative dice to determine a result. As most wargamers have D6 in a variety of colours this is not much of a hardship. So all moving and shooting mechanics are very simple and logical and straight forward. mechanics for shooting and moving are similar but not the same. Which lends to consistency and logic and not having to learn 2 different mechanics to complete a game turn. Again overall the mechanics are good , sound, quick the learn and logical. Range for example is for every FULL 12" you add one negative dice.
 So 0-12" no dice added, 12+"-24" a negative dice added, 24+"-36" two negative dice are added to the dice roll (and so on ever 12" an extra die is added). Like I said Simple and effective an straight forward. So Simple logical and straight forward that it is easy to explain as a show game for participation purposes!

There is a section on Building the cars to play the game ( NOT a section on Model making but all the starts needed and there are not too many.)
A couple of weapons have been left out, no smokescreens for example, but no silly weapons have been included either. |So a very healthy 1930's feel is maintained.

Overall the mechanics are very sound.

 Background: There is no Background. This maybe to include more options, So "Back of Beyond" Very British Civil war" "A Right Bloody mess!" (I think that is what they call the Australian Civil war (fictional before anyone questions the notion)), "Crimson Skies" (but on the ground) or your own dystopian alternative history are all playable. Just remember the 1930's and you can't go far wrong. I personally like background in these types of games. to me it is more useful and interesting than pictures, but each to tier own.

Negatives: There is in my opinion too much wasted space.  Take the double page spread above and to the right. If the publisher and games designer feels this is absolutely essential to the rules (you  may guess that I do not)Putting it all on a single page should be quite sufficient, not a page for each vehicle. I do realise that the publisher does try to make the page numbers devisable by 4 but as there are more than 4 pages of "Fluff" I feel it could be reduced.

Conclusion: I will admit to being bias towards this period so please be aware of that before I sum up. The rules are clear enough for a dyslexic (I am one) to understand. They are not complex and they are (to me at least) logical. The main drawback is the lack of vehicles that are available without conversion and model making. I know at my club if the rules take off there will be some "GOD AWEFUL!" contraptions . I guess at many other clubs as well. Therefore I have 3 choices. 1) Make everything myself. (this is currently my favourite option). 2) make players stick to the official Eureka miniatures (I know this will be limiting) or 3) just put up with it (he types through gritted teeth).
Overall I am impressed and look forward to getting some vehicles done and up and running.

Thanks for reading al this. If you have any questions more than happy to answer them. If no questions comment as you choose or choose not to comment. I am happy either way.

Take care, have fun and paint/game if you can.

Wednesday 16 May 2018

Blurry Photo time!

Yeah when I took these it was dark and they just did not come out as well as I hoped. Still never mind you can at least get the idea.

Two more Zvezda tanks. First u is the Panzer 38T.

The model kit was simple as they all have been so far, and straight-forward in that is you tried really hard you could put it together badly. That would however require a concerted effort, as itgoes together the correct way without difficulty.

German tank commander Otto Carius, did command one before progressing as the war went on to a Jadg Tiger (when captured by the Americans). Commander Carius is also reputed to have 150 "Kills" which makes him Germanys equal 2nd rated Tank ace. (Michael Wittman is either 4th or 5th depending on what you read.) Either way you look at it for the time it was used the Panzer 38T was still an impressive tank well up with it's contemporaries. In What a tanker this is one of the tanks I aspire to progressing to. fast and with a good gun the 38T was in its day a vey good tank.

And Tank 2. Well a Tank Destroyer, a STUG III, Based on the Panzer 3 chassis it was armed with a short 75 at the beginning of the war. This was still a very good gun but in mid or late war they needed more power and penetration so a longer 75mm gun was used. In game terms it has a LOW PROFILE so an extra acquisition dice is needed to acquire it. being a Tank destroyer it may also change one of its dice to a Aim dice which can make it very flexible. It also has very good armour so in early war great crew survivability. The main draw back is no turret so quite often you have to move in order to get sufficient options in aim. But as shown in the last game this is a lesser consideration as long as you have other tanks running interference. If we stick to early war I would hope after 15 or more kills to swap in to one of these as they can be quite deadly. Not a starting tank in the game at all but one to aspire towards.

As with all the Zvezda kits (so far tried) it goes together easily and is just about impossible to get wrong UNLESS you deliberately try to. So with almost no flash it is easy to recommend the 2 kits.

The last 2 pics are of them bother side by side. This clearly shows both the height and width of the 2 models. However both are very welcome in my collection as they were a joy to put together

That's it for today. I plan to finish reading the Maximillian 34 rules and review them next time. So with luck see you Friday and until then remember to dream big as it does not cost you any more!

Sunday 13 May 2018

Yesterday atthe club

My Tank
A Panzer 2
I was having a 5H1T day yesterday, everything I tried went wrong. And then I got to the wargames club. and things went right (at least until I left). Ahh the joy of a decent hobby.

I was going to play Matt at Aeronef, but I broke 2 models looking for the fleet and dropped a box of figures. So I phoned Matt and he was "Don't worry we can do something else!" We did do something else, we both Joined a game of "What a Tanker!" which was run by Graham.  This time it started with me and Graham as the Germans and Dick (aka Richard) and Matt playing the British.

The map from
my seat.
 Both the British were in A-13 Crusiers which I had used last game so I knew they were an OK  tank for the period I was in as already mentioned a Panzer 2 while Graham had a Panzer 35 T which is (game wise) exactly the same stats as the Cruisers. So it was even on points.

The map was a little more open than last time and having almost no armour and a little pop pop cannon I was going to be reliant on using any and all cover I could! (Gulp)

Das Hero Panzer(yeah right)

Dick Tank

Grahams Tank

Matt's tank

As Dick shot at me and missed. I was suffering
from cruelty to small tanks Syndrome.
Yes I ran away and tried to put a hill  between us.
It did not work and he shot at me again.
and again missed

Matt went hull down and Graham  started shooting at him

Richard felt confident and pushed forward determined
to persecute a small and weaker tank

But My tank had teeth.
I was able to circle around and By using the Building
as a covering piece of terrain
get behind him and fire into his weakest parts.

Despite being hull down Matt takes enough hits to drive him back
 and then destroy him.

Graham takes cover from the 2 new British tanks

Richard tries again to be needlessly cruel to small and cute  small tanks
 and pushes forward . Trapping me behind the building

Matt's Second tank dies easily on the next turn
having only been on the table 1 turn

The cruelty to small tanks continues and Richard sets me on fire.
Seriously guys there needs to be a law against cruelty to small tanks

The game did not end here 2 more people joined in. And now I took charge of a panserjaeger 1. (the weakest of all Tank hunters). Naff armour but a good gun for the period.
And I turned it around. even if I took no pics. Graham lost his tank and brought on a second 35T. Kev joined the Germans in a Panzer 3 and Tim joined the Brits in another A13 cruiser tank.
After a while the game ended.  and the battle field was strewn with tank wrecks. Some German but more British. The only survivors were Matts Bailed out crew on one kill. Grahams crew on no kills and my crew on 4 kills.
I know that next time we play they will all target me especially if I am in a Tank Destroyer. Not just for revenge, although I am sure that will be a factor, but as much to stop me becoming an ace tanker and getting an advantage or two. The rotters. (I am sure I would do the same though so I can't really complain). Either that or they will all start to take German panzerjaeger 1's so do not buy any more Graham.
That's it for now. As no pics you are free to believe I did not do so much damage and I will not blame you even to me it seems far fetched and unlikely! (And I was there, in front of witnesses)
Enjoy the day. Play if you get the chance and dream if you can't play
All the best Clint