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Monday, May 16, 2016

Bolt Action - May the Horch be with You, Tournament Recap

By Tristan

May the Horch be with you...

A couple weeks back, (the 7th of May to be exact) the Bolt Action Alliance, in conjunction with House of War (HoW) and War and Peace Games ran the second Melbourne based Bolt Action event for the year. It was a 1000 point event running generic platoons with no hard restrictions as we were running the BAA season 3 format.

I stood up early on in the year to take on TO duties and run this beast. Having never had any experience running an event like this I didn't know what to expect and this article will try and summarise the roller-coaster I went through.

Right from the outset I had a great support and help from other members of the community, which I believe is key to a great event. Garratt, Rob and Anf all helped out with tables, format and the general organisation but the big shout out goes to Dennis Berwick who flew in from Tasmania on a twin prop aircraft with two stunning tables of terrain ready to go! With this caliber of backup we couldn't fail!

Early on, the lists I received were in the spirit of the game and in the end every list I got was in theme yet competitive. Anf and I discussed early in the year about changing our venue from Games Lab in the centre of Melbourne to HoW in Melbourne's eastern suburbs. I reached out to HoW and found them to be receptive, friendly and the venue was the best I've ever seen! The date was then locked and the wait for the day began.

We decided (on Rob's suggestion) to split the field into Axis and Allies and have generals deploy players to tables with missions assigned specifically to each table. This idea was borrowed from the Down Order and worked a treat on the day. The players arrived early to find "some of the best tables seen at a Melbourne event so far" and began checking out what was on offer. Generals quickly deployed their forces and round 1 was off to a flying start.

Given that we had a good number of new players in attendance I was very surprised to find that I was called on very little to officiate on any rules. Instead players were laughing and having fun right from the word go. With 14 players in total coming, we had 7 games being fought over some incredible tables and after 2 1/2 hours the dust slowly settled and the Axis has squeaked out a very narrow win.

Points for each battle were awarded,

15 points for a win
10 points for a draw
5 points for a loss

And then a point each for the following minor objectives,

Keep you highest ranked officer alive
Kill your enemies highest ranked officer
Keep your most expensive unit alive
Kill your enemies most expensive unit
Get your troops into the enemy deployment zone

The Axis had won the first round by a single point! It was a result that was indicative of the level of fun and enjoyment everyone was having. The Allies decided to keep their general (much to Rob's relief) and round 2 kicked off after a good lunch break.

Round 2 saw a few of the newer players really test out their armies as they were beginning to feel more comfortable with the force in front of them. Again I was quite surprised that players got through their games quickly and with little fuss. When round 2 was over I tallied the score and it seemed that Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt had rallied the troops and pushed them toward victory over the vicious Hun. The victory was decisive with the Allies trouncing the Axis by 12 points.

After a break and much beard stroking the Axis huddled in their corner and came out swinging in round 3. Hitler must have been threatening his men with commands on the Eastern front as the Axis again took the fight to the plucky Allies and landed another close victory for the fascists. Was it enough though? Despite winning 2 out of the 3 rounds, the Allied victory in the second round was enough to put the Allies too far in front for the Axis to catch up. The day belonged to the Allies but the real winners were the players.

I'd like to thank Eureka Miniatures, Mad Bob Miniatures, Rubicon Models, War and Peace Games and especially House of War. Without the generous and kind support from these outstanding companies, I don't believe that Horch would have been the success that it was. I'm a big proponent of supporting companies that support our community and these companies are at the top of that list!

Round 3 of the Victorian Bolt Action League will be held in August and I believe that Rob will be running that one. Thanks to everyone who made it down and helped contribute to a sensational and successful event. Enjoy these snaps of the games in progress.

See you all soon!

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