Annual General Meeting Saturday 13 April 2002

after action report


Well, contrary to expectations, there was a fine turnout on the day, with 19 members present for for the AGM (Happy 21st Birthday!), not to mention a fine variety of games.  To prove it, the following photo was taken, those not wearing their HKSW shirts being relegated to the back row.



Apologies to James who missed out on the photo opportunity.


The minutes of the AGM are to be found here.


We bid a fond farewell to Adrian, Matt and Denny, all of whom shortly  will or have already moved overseas.  Adrian to Shanghai, Matt to Australia and Denny to Canada.  Come back and visit when you can.


The great turnout for the AGM gave us the opportunity to stage a DBM/DBA competition.  The theme was “Biblical” using DBM Book One armies so Philippe, Jeff, Dieter, Dave, Chris L, Chris B and Peter girded up their loins in a standard cup/plate knockout format.  Although we were playing for prizes of Early Imperial Roman DBA armies generously donated by Adrian , the general aim of the afternoon was to have as much fun as possible smiting thine opponents and doing bad Charlton Heston and Victor Mature impressions.


The game setup worked well and combined elements of DBA, (12 element armies, small, 30” square, playing areas,) and DBM, (rules and points cost,) to give us the best of both worlds. The games were played between equal points, historically matched opponents as follows: “Let My People Go”- Saitic Egyptians vs Later Hebrew, “Like A Wolf At The Fold”- Assyrians vs Babylonians, “The Plains And The Hills”- Thessalians vs Thracians, “The Lions Of The Desert”-Midianites vs Syrian Settlers, “Stallions and Kings”- Scythians vs Medes, and “Democracy and Divine Right”- Athenians vs Persians.

In the first round Jeff took out Phil, David defeated Dieter, and Peter smited Chris B. Chris L drew the bye.  Phil beat Dieter in the semis of the plate whilst Chris B drew the bye this time. Thus Phil and Chris B clashed in the plate finals somewhere in Northern Greece as Thessalians and Thracians clashed leaving Phil master of all he surveyed.  In the cup Jeff beat Dave and Chris L triumphed over Peter.  The final saw Jeff descend on Chris like a wolf at the fold and put all comers to flight.


So over the four hours everyone got three games, lots of loins were girded and enemies smited, many libations were made to the gods and a jolly good time was had by all.  Everyone looked spiffy in their Society T-shirts and now that the idea of a dress code has taken off the organizers are considering making loin cloths compulsory too next time!


The visual highlight of the day was without doubt the Stalingrad game played by Michael and Richard, which was a first play test of Easy Eight’s Battleground World War II rules.  The terrain which was designed  to look like Stalingrad , was mostly made by John Jenkins, with some from Michael.  The figures used were all from Black Tree Designs (the old ICON/Harlequin manufacturer) and their 28mm WWII range of Russians and Germans.  The scenario played was just a simple meeting engagement. 


The Easy Eight rules are designed as skirmish rules and can be used for a variety of figure scales on a one to one unit scale.  The rules use a 20 sided dice as standard, have a turn based sequence and use a random initiative system (only if you remember to bring a pack of cards!). 


The turn sequence has five phases:


1.      Mark Special Fire Modes – pinning fire, ambush, etc.

2.      Rally Phase

3.      Squad Morale

4.      Artillery Phase

5.      Actions


Phases 1 – 4 are simultaneous, but the Actions Phase, which is the heart of the system where the figures move, fire and die, is where the random initiative comes into play.  Each figure receives two actions in this phase (unless wounded or otherwise incapacitated) so that a figure may move twice, move and fire, or, fire and move.


The shooty bit requires a sighting check before you can fire, which should help to avoid most arguments on line of sight.  The effects from a hit range from simply making the figure itself take a moral check up to blowing the figure to bits and making the ones next to it take a moral check.  In the game one of the tough Russian NKVD was fired upon, ran away to hide and next turn became a craven coward!


Since re-reading the rules it is apparent that lot of mistakes were made, and that further play testing will be necessary before Michael and Richard can say that they have fully understood them.  One criticism of the rules so far is that there is a lot of paperwork and tables to go through and slows down the action, hopefully this will get better as we play more.  They can definitely see some quick play laminated chart sets or cheat sheets on the horizon! 


Paul and John tried out the well known rules 'Warfare in the Age Of Reason', in preparation for a French and Indian War game to be held in the next few months. It is hoped to stage that classic encounter between Montcalm and Wolfe, The Battle of Quebec 1759, on the Plains of Abraham .
They decided to set up a simple game with the figures already available to us with an emphasis on the linear tactics of the period.  Both sides had roughly 6 regiments each.

Since they would not be using The Jersey Blues or any of the militia regiments for the main battle it was decided to use them in the trial game.  Paul as British commander had 2 militia regiments, 1 Provincial Line regiment, 1 Regular line Regiment, 1 Medium artillery and a regiment of Rangers.  John, commanding the French, had 4 Regular line Regiments, 1 Militia Regiment, 1 light artillery, and an unit of Indians.

The French with superiority in Regular troops felt that the day would be theirs, bolstering their confidence for the upcoming big fight!  French confidence saw them maintain their tradition of inviting the British to open fire first.  Unfortunately this led to the French artillery failing a morale test and deciding to 'leg it', (which is why they probably will not turn up for the
Quebec battle!).  This was a bad start, from which the French never recovered.  With the unshakable Rangers holding the right flank, and the British Militia in a determined mood (standing their ground even after their Battalion commander had run away injured) it wasn't long before the French lines were broken, ( and confidence shaken for the upcoming fight).

The Warfare in the Age of Reason rules got a thumbs up (especially from Paul!), the charts and game systems were fairly simple and quick once we had gotten used to them.  A further reading of the rules will iron out some of the queries and questions that came up and both look forward to another trial game soon.


Last but not least, Franklyn, Ludovic, Chris Mackreth and Andrzej played the second edition of History of the World.  The game, which is designed for 6 players was only play with 4, James unfortunately having to disappear for a few hours due to work commitments.  The game worked well despite the reduced numbers.  After trailing in last position from turns 2 to 5, Andrzej made a miraculous comeback in the last 2 moves and carried the day; which is only to be expected as its his game!


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