The New Zealand Wargaming National Convention (NatCon) is being hosted this year by the Hutt (Valley) Wargaming Club at St Patrick’s College in Silverstream, Upper Hutt. Veterans of previous Hutt Club conventions will be familiar with this hall. As usual the even runs over Easter, which this year is relatively early (29-31 March), and registrations are $50 up until the 25 January, after which they are $75 (all registrations and entries after this date are subject to the consent & discretion of the convention organiser and/or tournament umpire).
There will be a traditional convention dinner on the Sunday night (in Trentham, Upper Hutt), with a cost of $25. Currently there are 9 Tournaments available, and these are:
Come along and attend BattleCry, Auckland’s largest all-round weekend gaming convention. On hand will be all manner of roleplaying, wargaming, cardgaming, and live-action tournaments and events, as well as a collection of stalls and displays of gaming materials. We welcome all comers, from experienced gamers to those of you out there that are merely curious as to what it is all about.
Entry into the venue is free, and we will have a number of likewise free events and demonstration games to keep you entertained during your time at BattleCry. If you are however interested in taking part in one or more of the tournaments being held over the weekend, there is a cost and we encourage you to pre-register and pay as early as possible to ensure a place, with prizes on hand for all such tournaments. Tournaments include:
While I was unable to attend NapCon several other New Zealand Lasalle players did – and one of them (Lintman) has provided some great photos of the event on his blog – Two large multi-player games were staged, Day 1 saw a loose recreation of Waterloo, and Day 2 a refight of Vitoria. Check out more great Lasalle stuff at Lintman’s Blog, especially his magnificent Calpe Miniatures Prussians…
Check out this fantastic looking Pirate Convention Game Sixteen Miniatures on a Lead Man’s Chest… which features some lovely terrain, ships, and figures at Fist Full of Seamen. This game was run at the Recruits Convention in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, USA, the weekend of 9-11 September 2011 by Cody Dillon, Steve Hobbs, and C.S.Christian – See Sixteen Miniatures on a Lead Man’s Chest… for more details.
John Lander’s group once again put on an impressive 1/35th scale Crossfire game in the UK – The Oosterbeek Cauldron (1st British Airborne Division in Market Garden, September 1944) – and you can see more photos at the Wargames Society Forum (scroll down to images 314 to 317). John’s Crossfire demo games & his models are fairly well known in the UK, and have previously been featured in Wargames Illustrated Magazine (issues 221 & 222 from March & April 2006) with Operation Goodwood.
I previously posted accounts of the 3 TSATF Colonial Games with images that we played at Auckland’s BattleCry 2011 Convention – As mentioned Gerry & Carolyn Webb of Castaway Arts were there and they also took photos of the games – so here’s an additional gallery of a selection of their photos of the games…
Having successfully returned to their base (game 2) Valentine Baker Pasha’s forces weren’t able to rest – a delayed communiqué arrived advising a steamer was coming down the Nile to rendezvous with them at the village of al-Ġardaqaḧ as-Sūdān and it included more civilians! Baker Pasha would have to assemble another, reasonably strong column, and rapidly march the 2 days across the desert to the Nile, through the territory teeming with Dervishes, to reach the village in anticipation of the steamer’s arrival.
Game 3 – The Scenario
An Anglo-Egyptian column is marching to a Nile Fishing Village to rendezvous with an expected Paddle-Steamer Gunboat. The Gunboat has vital supplies (in this case civilians needing escort to a safe location as well as critical supplies of ammunition and such that have escaped the Mahdists in the South) so it’s essential the column reaches the village on the agreed day.
Following the disastrous battle of the expedition to locate the missing European Civilians (TSATF at BattleCry 2011 ), Baker Pasha and a handful of survivors had managed to evade the victorious Dervishes and rejoin the balance of the local Anglo-Egyptian forces. With the entire countryside now up in arms and no hope of a second attempt to locate the civilians Baker pulled his remaining force from its isolated position and immediately began a rapid withdrawal to their regional capital and barracks town, hotly pursued by the Dervish forces.
Game 2 – The Scenario
An Anglo-Egyptian column is withdrawing from hostile Dervish territory, closely pursued by enemy forces.
February regularly sees the BattleCry Convention in Auckland, one of the larger NZ Wargaming events that is usually well run and encompasses more than just miniatures gaming (i.e. board gaming, card gaming, LARPing, etc). This year Gerry & Carolyn Webb of Castaway Arts (from Cairns, Queensland, Australia) decided to attend with a trade stand and some TSATF (The Sword And The Flame) demo games – as I’m a big TSATF fan I organised with Gerry to help him with the games, and provide all the troops and terrain – thereby saving Gerry & Carolyn having to cart their own from across the Tasman! The games were run as Public Participation & Demonstration games; although the former is a fairly rare concept in New Zealand so not overly familiar to many local gamers. However general interest was high, Gerry & Carolyn got some reasonable interest in their Figures & TSATF Rulebooks, and the games attracted reasonable attention and we even had some brief participation by 1 or 2 people. The following is a summary and photos of the games played over the 2 days…
Gerry Webb of Castaway Arts (in Australia) will be at the BattleCry 2011 Convention, here in Auckland on the 19-20 February, with his ranges of Figures and running some The Sword And The Flame participation demonstration games. And I’ll there with Gerry giving him a hand with the games. If you are in Auckland that weekend and interested in Colonials, or just Wargaming in general, pop along for a look at Auckland’s largest regular annual convention (expected to have over 300 gamers participating) at the ASB Stadium in Kohimarama – full details are at the BattleCry website.
If anyone ever needed inspiration to game the Sudan, most especially with the Perry’s range of figures then this is it – Frank & Björn have absolutely set an amazing benchmark for figure painting & terrain – the image here is but a low resolution version of just one of the many images. Make sure you check out their stunning (and ongoing) thread at the Lead Adventure Forum – there are images on every page of the thread and new images periodically added…
If you haven’t seen this thread previously it’s well worth a look, it may leave you breathless…
Well what a weekend – we had had two really intense full on challenging battles, one rather frustrating indecisive game, and one very decisive win. As with previous BattleCry events games were generally played in good spirits and the environment was great. The new venue at the ASB Basketball Stadium was fantastic and I look forward to future events being there… Once again Philip and Andrew had the ‘most ancient’ army present, and special thanks to Battleline Miniatures for the competition prizes.
One interesting result of the competition was only one team achieved more than 1 win – that was Ivan & Dickie with the Portuguese who got 3 (albeit costly) wins out of 4 games, their fourth game being an advantageous draw. We were next best with the one 25-0 decisive win and 2 advantageous draws, followed by Philip & Andrew (Kushites) with one 25-0 decisive win and a losing draw.
Sunday afternoon saw us facing the Kushite Egyptians of Philip Abela and Andrew Hunter. For deployment we placed two very large open fields and 2 roads to try and restrict their terrain placement (see the green & brown areas in the photos below) and force them to deploy in the open. However they were able to get two patches of scrub into their deployment zone and consequently corner sat with their force crammed into less than half the width of the table on the Kushan right. They also had a command off-table which we expected to flank march on on the Kushan right (see photo below) to support that deployment. The Kushite’s also pulled out a Guides Stratagem (again) and placed a hidden track through the scrub on the Kushan extreme right.
Sunday Morning saw us facing Andrew “Benny” Bennetts and Al “the Spartan” Donald, running Hannibal’s army from Zama, complete with Hannibal as the Brilliant C-in-C. Cam and I switched roles for the second day, and I’d command 2 fighting Commands and he just 1 plus the baggage. Faced with the Carthaginians mass of Expendable Elephants we were a bit gun shy and we basically had our worst game of the tournament – being both indecisive, excessively complicated in our plan, and overly cautious (although Cam may argue the last game was definitely our worst). Terrain had come down very conventionally with nothing affecting the game other than a convenient piece of scrub in the Carthaginian deployment area (see below).
For our afternoon challenge we were assigned Ivan Truong and Richard “Uncle Dickie” Foster, and their dastardly Medieval Portuguese. Personally I have bad memories of the latter army from back home in Christchurch in the early nineties (playing DBM 1.1 & 2.0), and my 15mm Minoans & Early Mycenaeans getting regular drubbings by it from Corbon Loughnan! Anyway Campbell and I were a bit concerned by this army, I was actually of the opinion of being prepared to risk our Kn(X) Cataphracts against the Irr Kn(O) but Campbell wasn’t so keen as we would be fighting at a disadvantage due to being graded ‘I’ (inferior) against them. In the end we took a cautious approach and decided to try and pin them in place with our Chionites and hold back our Heavy Kn(X) and Elephants for when we could be confident of a decisive strike where we’d have an advantage – after all this could end up being an ideal opportunity to use a “Feigned Flight” stratagem too…