Wargames

AT-43 — Advanced Rules Available for Download

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The free PDF of the AT-43 Advanced Rules is now available for download.

The file is 37 pages long. The French version is 42 pages long but the disparity only seems to be from a difference in language and not content. The file only has the core rules of the game but includes the table of contents of the full rulebook. The full rules will be over 126 pages long and the free PDF includes pages 46-77 of those. So missing from the free PDF are: The histories of the UNA, Therians, Red Blok, and Karmans; Recruiting and Training; Let’s Play; Using the Terrain; and various appendices.

I have only had a chance to look quickly through the rules so far. But from what I have seen they look very interesting and only reinforce my regard for the game. Hopefully I can get some games in soon to put them to the real test.

This download was a very nice gesture by Rackham. Players will now be able to decide for themselves if they wish to purchase the printed rulebook or even if the game is worth pursuing at all. It would be nice if more game companies did this sort of thing.

[See our AT-43 Rules review.]

AT-43 – The First Expansions

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The first three expansions for AT-43, the Steel Troopers Unit Box, the Storm Golems Unit Box, and the Accessory Expansion Set 2, are now available. The latest Cry Havoc!, issue 12, is also out.

The Steel Troopers come six to a box along with the appropriate unit cards. With the ST set you get four troopers, a sergeant, a missile launcher, and six option heads with triple-lens helmet. The painting quality is higher than that of the Operation Damocles set and does indeed match the comparison pictures provided on the AT-43 site except that most of the figures suffer from an overly heavy, white dry brushing (and a white over spray) that obscures a lot of the underling color. This is not horrible and could be easily touched up. The paint quality does vary from box to box and figure to figure so if you buy them in a store be sure to look through all the boxes and choose which ones you like best. Read the rest of this entry »

The Best Games Not Yet Published, 2007

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With the New Year upon us we thought it might be interesting to present the games we are most anxiously awaiting in 2007. There is no guarantee any of these will be published in 2007, nor that they will be any good if they are, but we are ever hopeful. Read the rest of this entry »

Test of Battle — Initial Impressions

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Test of BattleCommand Decision – Test of Battle, essentially CD4, was released in late 2006 by Frank Chadwick and Glenn Kidd. Command Decision is a WW2 miniature rules set using platoon stands to represent battalion level battles. CD has been around for 20 years now so we think it qualifies as one of the classic sets of wargame rules available.

The ToB website has a nice summary of the game and a description of what has changed from previous versions for players of the older titles; so we will not spend much time re-covering those topics. But we do think readers might find our initial impressions of the game useful. We want to stress that we have not played any games with ToB yet. The following comments are only from an unwrapping and initial reading of the rules. Read the rest of this entry »

A Tsunami of Naval Warfare Games

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The past year or so, especially the past few months, has seen a huge wave of new naval warfare games. First we have two card games, Phalanx Games’Naval Battles’ is a great WW2 game of naval combat and covers carrier combat as well as submarines. Secondly is Decision Games’ second title from their ‘Lightening War’ series, ‘Midway’. Neither game is a simulation by any stretch but both are fun, fast playing and have a nice naval feel to them.

Omega Games redid two older naval games and released them as new titles. There is the WW1 ‘Line of Battle’ and the WW2 ‘Battleship.’ Both titles focus on combat between capital ships but also include smaller vessels as squadrons. Read the rest of this entry »

Burger’s Ship Viewer

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I stumbled upon this site and thought it was worth posting about. This fellow has created an online database of ship statistics for Mongoose Publishing’sVictory at Sea’ and ‘Babylon 5: A Call to Arms’ games. You can view and print ship cards for both games. Very useful and very well done.

http://www4.webng.com/chburger/

AT-43 Tips and Tactics

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White Stars vs TheriansBelow are some general tips and tactics for playing AT-43. Obviously there are exceptions for any situation but these are some good points to keep in mind.

General Tips

  • Activation Cards: When laying out your activation cards keep in mind what forces are in the most danger. Also think about what unit your opponent is most likely to activate first.
  • Leadership: Activating at the right time can mean the difference between victory and defeat. Use your Leadership Points to help with activation rolls or to change your unit activation order.
  • Remember your options: Unlike other games, in AT-43 a unit can attack and move, move attack, attack and assault, and rush. Heavy weapons can attack a different target.
  • Protect your heavy weapons: Because hits are taken in order by distance keep your heavy weapons in the middle of your squads. If you feel the rear is safe keep them in the back. Because range is determined from the squad leader you are not penalized for position.

Tips for White Stars

  • Watch your range: White Star Laser Rifles are roughly better than Therian Nano Blasters from range 5 and over. Your odds are roughly even under range 5. This assumes you have more in number to help offset their re-roll advantage. Beware of using a small advantage in numbers up close as you may pay for that in an assault. Use range to your advantage. Shoot and back away.
  • The Missile Launcher is range independent. With the Lock rule you can fire your Missile Launcher even through friendly units and you’ll mostly be firing at Striders anyway so that’s another good reason to keep it back. If you know there will be no enemy Striders put it up front to soak up hits.
  • The Fire Toad is best at close range and can even auto-hit/kill many targets (or almost) at range 4 and closer.
  • Be afraid of the Sonic Gun! It has a high rate of fire and hit stats equal to your Laser Rifle.
  • Stay out of close combats. Unless you have much greater numbers you’ll lose.
  • Fire Toad: Remember it has two weapons. It can fire one, move, and fire the other. It can also fire each one at a different target. You can re-roll your impact.
  • Space: When fighting on the room map remember the Wraith Golgoth can’t enter certain rooms or move from one side of the map to the other because of its size. Your Fire Toads are much less restricted.
  • Tips for Therians

    • Watch your range: Your forces are much better at close range and remember the Nano Blaster gets a re-roll for impact. The Sonic Gun and Medium Sonic Cannon get better the closer you are.
    • Close Combat: Your forces are much better in close combat. Remember you can shoot, move, and assault in the same turn. Remember you can close assault the Fire Toad.
    • The Wraith Golgoth: Is the best unit in the Operation Damocles set. It is fast, great at close range, and has a good long range weapon. It also has staying power with 5 hits. The White Stars’ Steel Troopers cannot hurt it with their laser rifles or in close combat. Beware of the missile launcher.
    • Speed: Speed is your friend. Your units are faster than the White Star equivalents. Use this to your advantage to close or get out of trouble.
    • Space: When fighting on the room map remember the Wraith Golgoth can’t enter certain rooms or move from one side of the map to the other because of its size. The White Stars’ Fire Toads are much less restricted.

    AT-43 — Initial Impressions

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    Rackham’s AT-43 Operation Damocles Initiation Set is now available. www.at-43.com
    AT-43
    The Box: The box itself is impressive. The top cover lifts open so you can see everything in the box while it’s on the shelf — Nice touch. It could easily double as a storage container for the game but it is slightly space inefficient, but one could use that space to hold other items. The included container terrain piece can also double as a real storage container for items. The miniatures, although slightly larger, fit fine in Games Workshop miniature cases and similar transport. Read the rest of this entry »