You may have noticed that I’m kind of obsessed with Combat Commander right now.
Patrick Pence, of Patrick’s Tactics and Tutorials Youtube fame, runs a Combat Commander ladder on Boardgame Geek where players play one scenario a month against others on the ladder.
Essentially, it’s a ranking system and you (usually) play the player that’s above you or below you on the ladder.
After playing some PBEM games with Michal from the Boardgame Chronicle, I decided to join the Ladder and get some real-time games in against multiple opponents.
My first game was last night, and it was a hell of a lot of fun! Steve C from the ladder volunteered to play against me since the guy I would normally play couldn’t play this month.
This month’s scenario was called Sonnenwende, a struggle between German troops and Soviet troops in the streets of Berlin in 1945.
I was assigned the Germans and Steve the Soviets.
The Soviets have a ton of Assault troops and SMG troops as well as flamethrowers and satchel charges designed to take out bunkers. They also have powerful artillery.
The Germans have elite SS troops as well as conscripts, as well as a couple of heavy machine guns, a number of bunkers and trenches, wire and mines that will fortify the defense of the main building (Objective 5 in the north of the map).
Here’s the initial setup.
One bunker behind all that wire in the north, and then one each in the street in the south covering crossroads. There are also trenches in and next to the objective building too.Read More
Another amazing write-up by Michal of our continuing series of Combat Commander games. In this one, I am trying to make it across the board with the Germans standing in my way. I’m not the most aggressive player, but I ended up having to take some chances and it ended up working out!
A narrow win, and another great game. Again, thanks, Michal, for writing these up and for introducing me to this world!
I also encourage you to go to his blog and read up on his other wargaming goodness.
Our campaign with Dave continues. Combat Commander Europe – Base Game – all scenarios played consecutively, one by one, using Play be Email Method. Actually, this is Discord for files exchange and quick consultations whenever there is some question / uncertainty. Today I am presenting scenario number five – #5 Cold Front. As always, let me invite you to picture-rich session report!
Other Combat Commander camping with Dave:#1 Fat Lipki#2 Hedgroves and Hand Grenades#3 Bonfire of the NKVD#4 Closed for Renovation
Cold Frontis kind of attacker (USSR, Dave) vs defender (Germans, Michal) type of scenario. This time it is very cold – end of December 1941 – to the extent that no fortifications of any type can be placed during the game (which hinders defender a lot). Soviet forces just got influx of Siberian troops and are executing another counter-offensive. They are all equipped…
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April was not a good month of gaming for me.
In March, I played a bunch of live games on Boardgame Arena to really pad my stats and it was a lot of fun.
In April, however, I didn’t even really do that.
I did play 7 games, though, including revisiting some games that I haven’t played in ages.
The BGA edition of Alhambra, for example, is exquisite! But I first played that about 8 years ago, so it’s not a New to Me game.
Same goes for Tokaido and Sushi Go, which also have very good implementations there.
I do plan on doing something more in May, mainly because my fellow Cult of the New to Me members are starting to give me a bit of the side-eye.
But then I point out that I’m the one that’s paying the rent for Cult Headquarters, and they back off.
However, I then bring out cookies because I’m a benevolent cult leader.
Anyway, this is the first post in almost two weeks so let’s get to it!
Without further adieu (all of my adieu became T-Rex food anyway, and that was certainly a blow to the self-esteem), here we go!Read More
A rare double post for me (and that makes 6 this week!).
Also a rare Friday night post.
But I couldn’t hold my excitement until Monday.
I just read the GMT Games April Update and my eyes almost bugged out.
Combat Commander: Europe is on the P500 list for a 5th reprint!
Those who follow me on Twitter know that this game is my latest obsession.
So much so that I’ve bought all of the scenario packs (knowing that they will eventually be useful and may go out of print in the meantime) as well as Combat Commander: Pacific. I’ve also put myself on the P500 for the other two expansions, Combat Commander: Mediterranean and Combat Commander: Resistance.
The only thing that was missing was the base game.
And now it’s not.
Here’s the set up for our latest scenario, Bessarabian Nights, where the Soviets (me) have to set up randomly all over the map and then the Germans have to set up in a line of contiguous hexes.
The designer of the game, Chad Jensen, sadly died a little while ago and I think GMT has said that they will be keeping this game in print to some extent, so I’m hoping that it won’t have to reach the 500 order level before it actually goes into production.
I was the 4th one on the order list and we’re already up to 8. Let’s hope it moves quickly, or GMT decides to put it into production anyway.
What a great way to celebrate a Friday!
I hope you have a good weekend.
Edit: You can catch the replay of the stream here. They confirm that tokens will be replacing minis. It will also contain the Undead & Aberrations expansion in the box. I hope that expansions will just be just cards so that even those who own the first edition will be able to get the expansions. I hope that there are expansions in general!
Also the game will be produced in 7 languages, which is pretty cool and a sign (hopefully) that Gale Force 9 will be backing this game in the future. Which may mean more expansions?
Finally, it sounds like it will be coming out this Summer, which is great news!
Original post below.
There hasn’t been a formal announcement of this, but one of my favourite games (Top 5!), Tyrants of the Underdark, is going to be getting a 2nd edition issued by Gale Force 9 games later this year. (Gale Force 9 has mentioned it in passing and they’re already talking about the 2nd edition, but they haven’t actually issued a press release announcing this)
Designed by Peter Lee, Rodney Thompson and Andrew Veen, this 2016 combination deck-builder/area control game has long had issues with things like the colour palette (who thought dark purple and black would be a good two colours for player pieces?) and general retail cost for what you get in the game.
I’m posting this today because the AwSHUX online convention starts today, and tomorrow morning Gale Force 9 will be showcasing the new 2nd edition of this wonderful game!
I’ve heard various things based on pictures from various retailers where you can pre-order the game. Apparently it will include the Abberations & Undead expansion. It will have tokens instead of plastic miniatures.
Gale Force 9 has confirmed none of this, but I’m assuming Saturday morning’s stream will be telling us a lot more about it.
I’ve heard that it will be coming out in December, but again, no confirmation has been given about that. It’s up for pre-order at some web sites, though, so it definitely seems like it’s a thing!
Since I already own the game and its expansion, I’m not sure if I would be actually buying the game. I love what I have.
It will depend on how much has actually changed.
What I’m hoping for is that this release will become popular enough so that even more expansions will be coming out. It really needs more variety in the decks (though I haven’t played it enough to actually go through all of the combinations).
Will they be changing the card backs? I hope not. That would mean that any new expansions would have to be bought alongside the 2nd edition because they won’t match the first edition.
However, if making things tokens rather than miniatures brings the price point down, I’m all in favour of that. Hopefully that will mean that more people are attracted to the game.
I bought it on a deep discount, so I had no problem with the price.
However, one of the big knocks against the game when it first came out was the price compared to what you actually get in the game.
The fact that the 2nd edition will also include the expansion just adds more value to it.
Even if I don’t end up buying it (do I really need another version of it?), I will be shouting about this game from the roof tops because I think it’s a wonderful game that everybody should try out.
It also sounds like it will be a straight reprint (other than component changes, obviously) rather than incorporating rules changes or anything like that. I don’t recall there being any real rules issues that would require changing, so I’m 100% behind that as well.
Whatever it takes to get this game back into the mainstream.
Hell, it’s my #2 game of all time! (though it may have fallen slightly, it’s still in the top 4).
I encourage you to check out the AwSHUX stream tomorrow and see what you think.
If this game starts to become more popular, that would be awesome.
Are you a fan of the game? Or have you been on the sidelines due to the graphic design or price or something else?
Let me know in the comments.
It was originally supposed to be coming in early 2021 (or maybe even late 2020), but Spiralburst wants to get this right so they have pushed back the launch date.
They were even hoping to get it done for April 2021, but in an email from yesterday, they announced that it wasn’t going to happen then either.
However, it’s not all bad news.
From the email:
“We’ve made a ton of progress on the app since December and are close to a release-ready state. We were targeting April for this, but we still need a couple more months to add some finishing touches. Beta testers have been giving us incredible feedback, and we want to take this extra time to address all of it. We want to make sure we’re providing you with the best possible experience on day 1.”
I can certainly support that kind of dedication. You don’t want to release a crap game just because you announced a release date.
Too many video game developers used to do that (though now they aren’t afraid to push announced dates back).
In the meantime, the email also provided some pretty cool screen shots.
I haven’t played the game on the table yet, but I’m anxiously awaiting my chance to give it a try when it’s available.Read More
You may recall, if you’ve been reading this blog for a while (so, you know, a couple of you), that I have recently re-immersed myself in Upper Deck’s Marvel Legendary.
So much so that I did a post on what’s supposedly coming in 2021 for expansions and for some reason that post has taken off as far as hits go.
Anyway, yesterday a graphic was released that showed a little bit of what’s coming in the upcoming Annihilation expansion that has been delayed many times this year. It was originally coming in February (I think) and now it’s “when it comes out, it will be out.”
I don’t know if there were delays due to the production errors for the Realm of Kings expansion or if there’s some other issue.
Anyway, it’s nice to see some hint of the new Fantastic Four expansion. For years, they couldn’t do anything Fantastic Four related because of licensing issues. They still can’t combine the Fantastic Four with other parts of the Marvel universe, but there’s enough content to be able to do a standalone expansion.
That, and there’s enough in Legendary to be able to combine things without actually combining them! Just because you can’t specifically reference other expansions doesn’t mean you can’t make the Heroes mesh well with other Heroes in the franchise.
If you know what I mean.
What’s coming in Annihilation?
These three cards reveal a few things.
First, this Fantastic Four expansion will include the entire team as one Hero faction (as opposed to the individual Heroes that are in the Fantastic Four expansion). The Thing card shown here is part of the “Fantastic Four United” Hero faction. It still has a 4 cost, which means it will mesh well with the Thing’s Hero group from the earlier expansion.
It also shows that the “Focus” keyword will be returning. This will allow you to use Recruit in order to do whatever the Focus effect is.
In addition to “Fantastic Four United” Hero faction, there are the Heralds of Galactus which obviously includes Silver Surfer. Will it include others (who usually aren’t as heroic as the Surfer is in the comics)? Who knows?
Finally, Annihilus will be one of the two Masterminds. We can’t really tell what his keyword is (something to do with “Mass,” but it’s hard to read). However, its Master Strike is pretty potent.
It reveals the top card of the Villain deck. If it’s a Bystander, he captures it. If it’s a villain, that villain enters the city, moves forward a space (pushing anything in front of it) and then does any Ambush effect.
Fans of Legendary have been anxiously awaiting this expansion and the fact that it keeps getting pushed back has been frustrating.
It looks like Annihilation has finally been set to appear this Summer. It does mean that we’re probably not going to get all of the expansions that were promised in the original post.
COVID sucks, don’t it?
Not sure if that’s the reason. Upper Deck hasn’t been forthcoming as far as that goes.
Now that I’m caught up with every expansion that I want, it will be nice to be buying these as they come out instead of spending a bunch of money catching up.
And I can’t wait for this one!
It’s good to see the Fantastic Four coming back to the Legendary franchise.
What do you think of this one? And are you looking forward to it as much as I am?
Let me know in the comments.
Here’s another Combat Commander: Europe session report written by my friend Michal. I’ve been really enjoying these scenarios and I have almost become obsessed with this game.
Like a good deal, Michal knows how to feed my needs where that is concerned.
This is Scenario #4 and it’s a doozy! With some really bad luck on my side (though Michal took advantage of all that brilliantly, so I’m not claiming that I lost because of luck).
Hope you enjoy!
When you said A you should say B – the saying goes. Our Combat Commander Base Game campaign with Dave continues. We just recently tackled scenario #4 Closed for Renovation. The possibility to exchange files via Discord and communicate there speeds up any type of PBEM game. Needed interruptions – likeopportunity fireorhidden mines/wire – can be quickly handled. Also, we play purely for fun, not always monitoring each and every step of opponent; I am really glad that I had some contribution to getting hooked Dave to that fantastic title!
Other Combat Commander camping with Dave:#1 FatLipki#2 Hedgroves and HandGrenades#3 Bonfire of theNKVD
Closed for Renovation provides another interesting challenge between attacker (US, Michal) and defender (GER, Dave). That again means different number of cards – 6 for me, 4 for Dave – and many more actions for…
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I realize that it’s been almost 2 weeks since I’ve done a post, and really it has been at least 2 weeks since I’ve written one (the April 5 post was probably typed out on April 2).
I know I’ve been really affected by this COVID thing and the inability to play a lot of games live. My wife will play some games with me, but she’s not a gamer so the more complicated games are pretty much a no-go until I get to a game day again.
I’ve also been affected by something else that maybe I shouldn’t be, but it’s affected me more than it might affect some people.
Over the last 2-3 weeks, we’ve been getting organized to set up our wills.
Now that I own a condo, it’s pretty important to do prepare for the inevitable (though I hope the inevitable is 30-50 years away). It’s good to make sure our wishes are known not just in case one of us dies, but also in case one of us is incapacitated.
I know this is an important thing to do. I’m happy that we finally got it done (that and other “end of life” stuff).
But thinking about it for the last couple of weeks has been really draining. It’s hard to picture one of us dying, even if it is (hopefully) 30-40 years in the future.
And the fact that we had to do the initial stuff and then meet to sign things over a couple of weeks meant that my mood has been pretty morose over that time period.
I don’t like to think about me, or us, dying, but when you’re doing wills, you kind of have to think about that. What will happen if I die? What will happen if she dies? Or, perish the thought, what will happen if we both do?
During this time, while we’ve been doing the worksheet to give the notary public the information he needs, I’ve had all of this on my mind and I’ve had this mental wall. I’ve just been thinking about the worst that can happen.
And I haven’t been in the mood to write.
I’ve had a few things come up that I thought “hey, this might be cool to write about.” I’ve also received a review code for a Steam board game that I do want to learn and write about.
But my mind has been in one place, and it’s not been in a place that’s conducive to writing.
I have started many posts over the last couple of weeks.
There’s the next entry in the Top 300 BGG list (the most current one is here).
There’s a review of Speakeasy Blues, which my wife helped me play enough games to do a review for.
There are a few others that aren’t quantifiable.
I also have a review code copy of Asmodee Digital’s Game of Thrones digital adaptation that I really need to do a review for but I just haven’t been in a good mental space to try and learn the game.
I have a few other posts started, but each time I try, it just sits there open and then I close it again and play some Slay the Spire. That game is so easy to play and space off for.
Of course, there are other things going on as well. COVID has brought a halt to any in-person gaming except for my wife (which, while she is willing to play anything that I want, I’m not going to subject her to the heavy-duty stuff) but I have been enjoying some of the online gaming sphere (especially Boardgame Arena, which has been adding a ton of games to try) and I’ve joined some communities where we are trying a bunch of Boardgame Arena asynchronous games online to try out a new game.
That has been a great things from this pandemic.
But I want to play face to face. I want to play with my game group.
I have bought so many games during this pandemic, and I think often about how much I probably shouldn’t have. But my outlet for “new to me” games is gone because my cronies who have bring new games to game day are gone right now. I can’t even count how much money I’ve spent on new games.
But it’s made me happy during this time, and I guess that’s the main thing. Trying to stay mentally healthy during this time is very important.
And if buying new games helps with that, I don’t feel bad about it.
But this post is mainly about this blog.
And maybe, now that the stuff about our will is done, I may feel up to posting again.
I hope so.
I hope next week will have a couple of posts. Maybe a review? Maybe some news post (which always seems to jump start me). Maybe something else.
I hope you’ve been keeping well during this difficult time.
Let me know how you’ve been coping in the comments below.
It’s funny. I just touted my anniversary last month and talked about how I’ve been doing with the the blog. And then, shortly after that, I go silent.
Not a good thing.
But I hope to do better.
How are you doing?