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Monday, February 27, 2017

Flames of War: Version 4 for Early/Late War, Rules Preview

Now that we have taken care of all of the Mid-War releases for Version 4, it is now time to turn our attention to something I am excited for, which is the EW/LW update to V4. For those who have been following my coverage may be thinking, what a hypocrite, he blasted MW V4, let likes it for EW/LW. First of all I do think we have two related but vastly different games here, and I feel after you have taken time to compare the two, and perhaps play them you will see the difference as well. Despite my praise I do feel gamers will have some issues with some of the concepts that have changed from Version 3. This article is the first of a series that will cover the V4 EW/LW rules, the next article will cover the Special and National Rules from this book and from the Special Rules book.
The new rules come in two books; the first are the core rules which comes out to 109 pages and is a standalone set of rules not a translation of the V3 rules for V4, so you do not have to keep referring back to V3. The other book, which covers Special Rules and Warriors is not a standalone book, and serves to translate, amend, and update the info from all of the previous EW/LW intelligence briefs to V4, so you will need to refer back to the original book.

Both books will be given to you free if you present a copy of the V3 book, and even that simple statement has led to many questions of the forums. So why have two books for the V4 rules? It goes back to what I stated above, they are different games now. All of the rules that dealt with things like warrior teams, pioneers, flame throwers, etc. are not out of the MW version of the game, so why have it the rules since they are no longer applicable. Also, the deep and interesting lists, with their unique special rules are unchanged and are no long comparable to the mid war game. Another big difference between the two is that MW will have a different point scale and use cards for players to keep track of their forces vice using lists.

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Friday, February 24, 2017

Bolt Action - Cancon 2017 Photo Dump

Not too long ago, we had a Bolt Action packed weekend at Cancon, Australia's biggest wargaming convention.  There was a Friday K47 event and then the main BA event over Saturday and Sunday with 56 players, the latest event in Australia to date. Headed by master TO, Peter West, who was backed up by deputy TO, Patch of the BAA, everyone managed to enjoy an amazing event that ran like clockwork. 
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The Portal's World at War Tournament - December 10th 2016

So I begin by apologizing to Chris Kadish and My friend Karl, as well as the folks over at CT Valley Gamers for not getting this typed up sooner.  My laptop died a horrible death right after this tournament and then I waited for its replacement to arrive well into the new year.  After that, I had to chaperone 20 kids into NYC for a 4 day field trip....bottom line, this AAR dropped down on my list of priorities.  Moving forward however, I expect I will be a lot faster with these reports.  Since my new computer doesn't randomly shut down and erase all I was working on.

Without Further ado....

The Portal in Manchester CT, has played host to a few FOW tournaments over the course of the past year.  and I've been lucky enough to attend two of them.  Chris Kadish, TO organizer and man about town, helped put this one together.  A doubles tournament with 2000 pts per team, and some restrictions on combinations. (no fortified companies for example) drew in quite a few teams.  Due to some friction over criteria for lists, a few teams from up North had to drop (when their ride decided against going.)  But we still wound up with 6 teams, and 12 players, which was more than enough to have fun moving our toys around the table.

Below, Chris, wondering why I am taking this picture.

Below: Some photos of the tournament area and some of the folks setting up.

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Thursday, February 23, 2017

Behind Enemy Lines Episode 33

Download the episode here
Dan, Damian and Greg are back for 2017! And you know what, why change a winning formula right?! If it ain't broke....

So, in part 1 we're looking at all the latest news and products from the gaming world for you to get excited about.

Part 2 is all about our local club and all the goings on there. We also look at the first tournament of the year for us, DanCon IV!

And finally, Part 3 sees (hears?) Greg asking the other two a few questions about what they're excited for in 2017.

We're back and its good to be a gamer!

Want to join the conversation? Please sound off in the comments below, or let us know on our forum!
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Flames of War, V4 Rules, Reviewed and Spoiled

This is the third and final preview for Battlefront’s Version 4 Mid-War book releases. In the Why We Fight Podcast, we devoted 3 long episodes on the changes found in the Early and Late war rules for V4. After reading through the advanced copy of the MW rules, they are somewhat different than what we have previously covered for the EW/LW rules. The core mechanics seem to be the same as the EW/LW versions, however I noticed a few things that are not in the MW rules. Warriors seem to have been taken out of the game, the card system plays a bigger role than I expected in MW, and the new rules seem to have simplified the game in a way it didn’t in EW and LW. What we have here is a set of rules that really only address the forces from Desert Rats and Afrika Korps and is not a rule book that covers the other forces that are planned to come out later for Mid-War; such as the US, Soviets, Italians, and East Front Germans. So before you flip out, let me detail what this book has and some of the differences I found with the EW/LW draft we reviewed. I will also high light what is now missing from the game.

You can look at the tables of contents for both books, but that really does not get to the differences in the two sets of rules.
You will notice that Aircraft has its own section the EW/LW, while in MW the rules for airplanes is woven into the rules which is something many players will like. Special units like Snipers, Flame teams/tanks, Pioneers/Engineers and Armored Trains (did they have any in MW?) are not in the core rules. I started to wonder if these rules only pertained to the first two books, Afrika Korps and Desert Rats since the book only has the national special rules for those nations. However I do not think this is case. Maybe the special units will appear in the upcoming books when they add new forces, we will have to wait and see.

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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Bolt Action - My British Expeditionary Force, A Run Through the Ranks

Howdy folks, I have been gathering and painting my British Expeditionary Force for Bolt Action for some time now, and it is finally in a game ready position to write about. I will cover off on why I chose to play a BEF force, what units I intend to take to the table and where I sourced the miniatures from.

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Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Desert Rats for V4 Previewed and Spoliled

The British 7th Armored Division, known as the Desert Rats must be a favorite of someone at Battlefront because these guys pop up in so many books. And now, the first Mid-War Version 4 Allied army book follows this trend. It really shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, like the Monty Beret, few things make us think of the war in western desert more than the Desert Rats. So, in the aptly named book of the same name, players are given the opportunity to build a formation that features the tanks used by the 7th during the war in the North African desert.

What is in store for us in Desert Rats? Players have the option of fielding 4 formations in this book; a heavy tank formation featuring the Grant tank, two cruiser tank units that feature either the Honey or Crusader tank, and of course an infantry formation that represents the 7th AD’s motor rifle brigade. The formations available in DR represent a huge reduction from the variety of units that were previously available in the V2/3 North Africa books. However, this book only covers the 7AD and perhaps follow on books will cover the other units involved the desert war. One omission that I noticed is that the Sherman tank is missing from the lists - a fact  some “rat lovers” may gripe at. Rumor has it that Battlefront is going to include them in a later release. So until then your fights vs. the Afrika Korps will have to be without the iconic M4.

OK, let’s take a look at the formations.

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Monday, February 20, 2017

Afrika Korps for V4 Previewed and Spoiled

Welcome to V4! With the first two mid-war books now upon us (or nearly so) it’s time for some good ole’ spoilers and thoughts from your WWPD team.

First up, we’re taking a look at Afrika Corps, the German V4 book covering the fight in North Africa.

This book, and it’s counter part Desert Rats, are supposed to show us how the implementation for V4 will work. Unlike Early and Late-War Battlefront is waving a magic version wand and changing everything all at once.

The books also give us great insight into what future books built entirely for V4 may look like. We already know that US and Italian forces are coming by the early summer with the Eastern front due to arrive before the fall. We also heard rumors that the Pacific and the Far East will be added in late 2017 or early next year.

Let me make one thing clear, I am not writing this article on the core V4 rules, which I really like, but on the one of the two books that are supposed to replace the old North Africa book. Afrika Korps covers the German forces from the 1942-1943 campaign against the British 8th Army. When I first glanced at Afrika Korps I was struck by how light it was on lists, and those lists were even lighter as far as options.

To get some perspective, let’s look at the Africa Company infantry list from the older V3 North Africa book; it has a lot of neat options at the company level:

Drilling down to the platoon level, once again you have so many options, which fits in with the Kampfgruppe style organization this unit found itself having to cobble together during the Western Desert campaign.

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Friday, February 17, 2017

Watch on the Rhine - Blackmoon Games, Lebanon, NH 1700LW

Hosted by Joey Laderoute and Jeff Mayo and taking place in Lebanon NH at  Black Moon Games, this would wind up being one of my last V3 tournaments before V4 comes out in March.

I brought up some of my terrain (I can proudly say I have two tables worth.) that's not Eric "Tarzan"  Lauterbach levels of terrain...but everyone needs to start somewhere.  Some shots of the setup before things get going.

This 1700 pt tournament was so well attended we wound up with an impressive wait list.  20 players from all over attended.  I decided to come up the night before, and stay in a hotel, then left from the store and headed back down to my Home in Danbury that night.  The whole thing was well run, the store was a fun place and the owner was a very generous and friendly guy.  If there are people looking for some gaming space and product, I highly recommend it.

Some shots of the store...

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Bolt Action - Ghost Army Podcast Episode 22

Ghost Army Podcast: Episode 22

In this episode of the Ghost Army Podcast, Patch, Bryan and Anf talk about their action-packed weekend at Cancon, how their lists went and what they saw at the event, the first major Australian event for Bolt Action V2.  In the second half of the episode, they have on Mark, the author of the new Battle of the Bulge campaign book being released by Warlord and delve into the making of the book itself.

Find this episode in your friendly neighbourhood iTunes store or HERE.

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