Wednesday, 19 January 2022

Vampires and Weeping Angels-Welcome to Garvaldian Venice

 Wednesday 5th January 

Sleepy Venice 

E di Nuovo.

A non playing boat.

                         Rather than waste a beautiful set up,El Presidente for life decided to run another IHMN game based in Venice,this time with three players venturing into town looking for several loot counters.I would say loot counters very loosely as the contents of these counters were either weeping angels,vampires or deed bodies!Welcome to Garvaldian Venice.

Coming under the allure of a vampire.

“What the f**k”in Italian.

Run ashore.

Colin’s Ragazzi.

            Tonight’s three teams consisted of the Regia Marina(Italian sailors)who were under my watchful eye.,The company of St Mark(which consisted of Corte Maltese and a few of his female cohorts)guess who had control of them?and a very young Mussolini and his early Fascisti followers,in the hands of our Andrew.Well at least they were Italian rather than last week’s Chinese and Egyptians.

“Oh hello there!”

The Fascisti frolic.

And find a deed body.

          Tonight’s game was a bit curtailed due to an extra long pizza break and early work commitments the following day.As usual the game started off with everybody heading for the nearest loot counters and on my first turn one of my sailors climbed to the top of the nearest building and surveyed the loot counter situated on the veranda only to find out that it was a weeping angel.Not good.For once the angel was not up to the task as for when the sailor charged into combat a struggle ensued which for once went the sailor’s way as although they grappled for a few turns the angel couldn’t defeat him.

Il Duce discovers a vampire.

Divide and conquer.

Shot in the back.

          My tactics like last week were for to split my force in two and hopefully conquer so therefore my Teniente and a few matelots broke off from the main group whose object was to overcome Corte Maltese and his minions.Corte Maltese decided to head for the loot which was lying in the bandstand,he promptly arrived,turned the counter and lo and behold he came face to face with a vampire.This vampire proceeded to mesmorise and and after coming under its spell proceeded to take a pot shot at one of the sisters of the orphanage and although he didn’t do any damage I bet it p’d her off.

Nothing to see here-yet!

Doing what the vampire tells you.

                           My lads decided not to mess about and quickly started taking potshots at Andrew’s Fascisti but alas no hits.Andrew returned the compliment and although didn’t hit any of my men crossing the bridge he took  a shot at the fracas that was going on between the sailor and the weeping angel and lo and behold he hit the weeping angel killing it in the process.That got my sailor out of a very sticky situation to which he took full advantage and legged it.

Slugging it out.

It’s amazing who you meet on a gondola.

            El Presidente meanwhile didn’t take care of his vampire problem and of course it came back to bite him on the bum figuratively speaking for in the next phase it hit him with another mesmerising spell making him once again take a pot shot at one of his accompanying sisters.He really does know how to pee a woman off.

Waiting for Romeo.

                   Andrew’s next fortune cookie for want of better words was the appearance of a vampire which although was a hindrance didn’t take him long to do away with leaving him the opportunity of splitting his forces so that he could deal with my incursion across the bridge.Andrew sent his minions across the bridge for a set too with my matelots but my rum infused lads held their own and the Fascisti began to fade away.The rest of my squad made for the centre of Venice disturbing yet another Weeping Angel on the way making them stop and take care of this usurper which was going to take most of the remainder of the evening.

Il Duce urges them on.

                   Colin’s other girls were making their way around the canals trying to avoid the other two warring gangs whilst they hunt for other loot tokens,usually deed bodies giving them more victory points.This was going well for Colin until he came across a Weeping Angel biding its time on a gondola looking for €80 to pay the gondolier(that comes from personal speaking by the way).This turned into a bout of fisticuffs when two of Colin’s sisters decided to take the angel on.

About to be three in a boat .

Boots to the fore.

                 The curtailed game was coming to an end with most of the points going Andrew’s way even although my lads were dumping their gang members into the canal.A great game as always with once again another take on this fabulous Venetian scenery.Many thanks to El Presidente for putting the game on and I’d imagine the scenery will be used for other games.

             See You All When I See You.

          This has been a Garvald Film Studios Production!



Monday, 3 January 2022

2021’s Last Tsunami-Venetian Style.

Wednesday 29th December 

Still singing.

Venice before the Tsunami.


           The last game of an eventful 2021 found us back at the Garvald Film Studios for an exciting romp involving Chinese Tongs and the Servants of Ra racing each other to embark on the boat that was going to save them from the ensuing Tsunami which was about to make Venice even more waterlogged.This was an In Her Majesty’s Name scenario that I had plucked out of the new rule book as I thought it looked interesting and boy was I going to find that out at the end as once again I hadn’t read the victory conditions correctly.The conditions stated that once six people were on the boat,it cast off and the game was over but I didn’t click that it meant any six persons meaning although at the end El Presidente had four and I had two it still meant end of game-bummer! 

The Servants of Ra nervously looking over their shoulders.

Single file in twos.

The hoped for refuge.

             . My plan was to rush to the boat with the Dragon Lady and some of her retinue whilst her  second in command and a few lackeys would hold off the opposing cultist minions hoping they would be heading for the safety of the boat before the Tsunami struck.This set the scene for a big stramash on one of Venice’s bridges before both sides remnants headed for the escape boat. I drew first blood with a snapshot from one of my musket armed Boxer sending one of the cultists into Venice’s dirty canals.


The bad guys converge.

The Bridge Brawl.

             This just drew the ire of the Ra’s cultists as they swarmed over the canal bridge and surrounded my poor Chinese lads who were fighting for their lives even before the Tsunami struck. The Tsunami was a random generated event which was diced for after every movement phase working on a D10-2 which was okay to start as El Presidente rolled a one meaning the wave was working itself up to a frenzy  before swamping Venice and all the participants .

Dragging their heals behind the Dragon Lady.

Said Dragon Lady.

The first arrival.

Servants of Ra are not far behind.

          Our main participants were racing each other down opposite sides of the canal hoping to board the boat/submarine which was going to guarantee their safety-maybe!The two ladies could be seen given each other the finger as they headed for the mooring before their eye makeup ran.Their entourages were close behind them.

Facing off!

We didn’t have a marker to represent the Tsunami so you have to imagine the gondola surfing on the crest of it!

The entranced Dragon Lady spars with the Dragon Warrior.

                  The entourage finally arrived at the docking pier with their girls to the forefront and before we could have a pleasant chick fight Professor Abir had cast a Zone of Shadows spell on my Dragon Lady which lo and behold she couldn’t defend herself against. The result of this spell had her scrapping with her faithful Dragon Warrior who was just a few paces behind her.Luckily nothing bad came off the fight.After she recovered from the spell,she just gave herself a shake and headed back towards the submarine seeking revenge..

“Wait for me!”in Chinese.

“Everyman for himself!”

                Meanwhile back at the bridge Master Wu-jen was dispatching with aplomb all insunder but alas my lackeys were dwindling rapidly probably as they were all keeping one eye on the oncoming tidal wave.After one last skirmish the remaining combatants decided to place safety before valour and disengaged from each other before legging it towards safety.

“Cast off!”

“And their off!”

              Back at the pier it was setting itself up for one last battle as everyone was desperate to get on to the boat and in the ensuing scrap my Dragon Lady came up against Akhenaton,head cook and bottle washer of the Servants of Ra and I’m sorry to say came of second best and was last seen being dumped into the canal.Boo Hiss!

Survival of the slimiest.

       It was at this point El Presidente informed me that there were now six persons on the boat therefore he could cast off even although the six persons were from a different sides.Bummer,one should read the victory conditions with a bit more concentration.Game set and match to El Presidente as all my gang were still spread out all over Venice and although I had a couple of figures on the Submarine my strewn dead bodies meant that the Servants of Ra had won the day but revenge will be swift.

The “Tsunami “reaches the bridge-luckily everybody had legged it.

         A great game to finish off a weird gaming year which had a few ups but a lot of downs mainly due to lack of understanding of the ever changing rules and regulations laid down to us by our so called dithering political masters.

       I wish you all a Guid and hopefully prosperous New Year and hopefully we’ll see you for a gab at one of the game shows the Gothenburg Gamers intend to attend starting with Hammerhead at Newark in March.

              See You All When I See You!

         This has been a Garvald Film Studios Production.


Sunday, 14 November 2021

One Never Learns!

 Wednesday 10th November 

Seven Years War Sci Fi!

              We all trapesed out to the Dacha of Comrade Gilchristi for a rip roaring game of Seven Years War involving a skirmish between Prussian and British forces and the French usurpers backed up by some Irish hangers on.The game was preceded by an excellent lunch at the local carvery and it was great just to be gaming on one of Bill’s great set ups.I am not usually a lover of these big battle games but once in a while it goes down a treat.

The field of battle.

My forces gather 

Dave’s Irish.

      As I mentioned it was a set too between the Allied forces of Prussians and British and the bad guys of the French alliance. I was subordinate to El Presidente who as well as being overall commander took the British force under his wing whilst I in my usual Teutonic guise guided the Prussians to their usual storming success.Trouble is El Presidente didn’t follow in my footsteps.Mr Ray took charge of the French opposite me leaving Dave O’Brien in charge of the remainder including Irish mercenaries.The objectives were possession of both a river bridge over the Lippe and the nearby road junction.Comrade Bill was adjudicator and doyenne of the rules and we were reminded of this every time we got the rules wrong(which I did quite a lot).

El Pesidente’s British infantry.

Colin’s colourful Hussars about to trample over his light infantry.

My Jägers polishing their rifles.

Colin’s alter ego the Duke of Marlborough.

            The game commenced and the usual gameplay commenced and with my usual aplomb I decided to move my dragoons as far as I could towards Mr Ray’s Hussars hoping to clear them from the field but my dice rolling at its best had me straight into an engagement.Ah what the heck it was better than the last time I played Black Powder and ended up charging into an empty field.This confrontation went very well with Mr Ray’s Hussars heading for an early bath with the first dice rolls. One unit down a s******d to go.

Colin moves up but who’s that on his flank!

My Junge finally get moving.

Colin’s objective.

Crotch shot of Dave looking smug.

                  My infantry meanwhile were enjoying a late breakfast as they couldn’t be bothered moving.I couldn’t repeat my earlier low dice rolls and for a couple of turns they proved rather stubborn and refused to budge which  was great considering my dragoon’s had charged halfway up the battlefield without any support.    Meanwhile on the other side of the field El Preidente’s forces were having the same type of breakfast as mine as they seem to have two speeds -slow and full stop.This led straight into the hands of Mr O’Brien as he didn’t hang about in getting to grips with Colin’s slow moving army.
Looking for more sabre fodder.

“Get intae them!”

Wee bit oota sequence.

Taking the hits.

     I finally got the remainder of my wing moving with the Prussian grenadiers given the chance to redeem themselves by clearing out the village and my Cuirassiers given the objective of clearing away the French infantry and carrying the day to an early finish.Well that wasn’t going to happen for as soon as the cuirassiers came in to contact with the infantry they exchanged handbags and decided to retire.The norm for the day.My infantry were slowly making their way forward towards  their objective but as soon as they reached the outskirts of the village they were repulsed on the first attack sending the front unit into a slight retiral.

Colin about to get shafted.

Covering the flank.

 Meanwhile my previous victorious cavalry were regrouping ready for the onslaught from Mr Ray’s own cuirassiers.My plan was to use my hussars as sacrificial lambs in order to protect my central attack.This they did keeping the bad guys at bay until my better cavalry could win against the French infantry and concentrate on the marauding enemy cavalry.This was proving a bit of a sticking point as Mr Ray had finally deployed some artillery and this was proving to be a thorn in my cavalry’s side.Time to see if my jaegers could prove their worth.

Colin about to concede.

Definitely capitulating.

   The battle on the other side of the table was not going well for El Presidente as his garishly coloured Hussars had came of second best in a duel with Dave’s cuirassiers leaving his very slow moving infantry at the mercy of Dave’s said cavalry.This was to prove pivotal in the battle as Colin’s infantry and artillery seem to be disappearing with ease meaning this battle was going to be heading for a victory for the French and their allies as I couldn’t make any real head against the entrenched infantry as Mr Ray kept on rolling good dice rolls.He must have had Angus’s dodgy dice.My Hussars had eventually headed for the hills and before my better cavalry could wheel to deal with Mr Ray’s interlopers and my jägers had  dealt with the artillery the full time whistle had blown as the game was set to bog down and also some of us had early work starts the following day.

My hussars have done their bit.

End play.

                   It was a great day out and a great game played in the usual bitchy way but like any good rugby game everyone was all pals at the Palais at the end. I loved playing with all these very colourful units and I’m glad I didn’t have to paint them all.

           My thanks to Bill for putting on a excellent game and providing all the units although I don’t think he painted any of them.I am led to believe this weeks game will see me defending the honour of Sicily against the invading imperialistic American hordes.

                     See You All When I See You!

           This has been a Garvald Outside Broadcast Film Presentation.