Thursday, 10 March 2016

Tactica 2016 Review (2) - Our games

Don't miss part one with the splendid tables all the other clubs brought: Here.

Finally here are some pictures of the games we brought to Hamburg. Firstly a 28mm Napoleonic skirmish I had the pleasure to contribute some humble work and secondly the wonderful Squigghopper Dungeon our club fellow Georg designed and operated.

Let's go to Egypt to begin with. It was a skirmish game scenario my friend Bernhard designed. It was set in spring 1801 during the French campaign in Egypt and Syria. Here are his very own words heralding in the story:

It’s spring of 1801. Napoleon has left Egypt a long time ago. British troops have landed successfully and are marching on Kairo.

First skirmishes are taking place near Rahmanieh on the left bank of the Nile between the British expeditionary force, supported by Ottoman troops. In a coup-de-main the French occupy the small town of Disuq on the opposite river bank. The British react swiftly and strongly. With a tenfold superiority they attack the French. But what is the real objective of this fight off the main battle site? This skirmish scenario will give an adventurous answer.

Our table... Nearly completely set up for the game.
To set the stage we employed roughly 250 figures, two rowing boats, a couple of wonderful exciting terrain pieces and a bunch of palm trees, shrubbery and scenic bits like chests, bags and such. By far most of the stuff came from Bernhard's wonderful collection, but some other club fellows and me were able to contribute some small parts as well. Thus Holger made the terrain mats, Georg helped with the terrain board and I gladly added the market stand that Santa brought (look here) me as well as my unit of British tars (featured here and here).

Just in time for the start of the show some French gathered in and around Disuq:
French light infantry conquered the buildings of Disuq.
But the citizens kept following their usual daily routine.
Meanwhile the French setup two guns. One in the village centre and one at the banks of River Nile.
Reinforcements on their way.
Colonel Tulip leading his men from camel's back.
But on the other side of the table the British and their Ottoman allies prepared to launch an attack against their French opponents:
By land some British grenadiers, lights and line infantry.
And by sea... Sailors and marines.
All events well documented by Napoleon's favourite painter.
During the two days of Tactica we played the game a couple of times. All games went differently and I chose some mixed pictures from the games:
British troops landing and storming the village.
But French dromedary mounted infantry is reinforcing their fellows.
Albanians and Ottoman light horse storming the outskirts of Disuq.
Forward the Light Brigade! Charge for the guns he said !
Finally British marines are cleaning the alleys of Disuq.
To run the scenario we used a very interesting and well-working Napoleonic version of 'Lion Rampant'. It's called 'Lion and Eagle' although we used to call it 'Dromedary Rampant' due to the French mounted infantry dominating the field. Anyway it's a very handy and easy ruleset for skirmish games. Of course no simulation at all but a wonderful solution for splendid beer and pretzel games among friends. The Napoleonic variant will be covered in one of the upcoming issues of 'Wargames Illustrated'. We had their kind permission to give the rules another play test.#

During the two days of the show we managed to play the game three times with different groups. Firstly on Saturday morning we were able to play the game ourselves for the first time. A nice fellow from Skandinavia named Thomas joined our bunch and we had a good time:
Thomas, Bernhard, Holger and Heinz watching the dice...
Later that day a nice trio from Nottingham showed up and we had another wonderful game. Yours truly had the great pleasure to take the fourth seat and get another chance to beat up the French occupants. This time taking the hat of the Ottoman leader.
Bernhard describing the scenario to us four. Somehow the froggs Michael and Ally look slightly more attentive...
My British ally Alan and me discussing the plan.
Colonel Aly trying to discover why his troops are so defiant.
On Sunday then our Finish friend Theemu who visit us the last two years in Hamburg as well and a trio from Berlin who we knew before as well showed up and I had the great pleasure to run the scenario for them:
Teemu, Karl and Jörg... Their fellow unfortunately hidden.
Besides that our club was lucky enough to bring another game to Tactica. As last year Georg boxed his funny Squigghopper dungeon and prepared a funny and exciting game:
Georg and Holger setting up the course.
The game is based on some rules that were published in Games Workshop's magazine 'White Dwarf' ages ago. But in the meantime he developed a lot of special rules for his dungeon. All very easy and perfect for a funny, non-serious game. We played it on one of our yearly annual closure meetings and it was fun beyond comparison.
The dungeon... Made mostly of Hirt Arts castings and Styrofome by Georg in person.
The contenders.
As you might expect the visitors discovered were quickly how much fun this game is and how fast a game passes. Thus Georg was uncredibly busy all the time with running race after race.
The dungeon was sorrounded all the time.
Finally that's it. We had a wonderful time in Hamburg and enjoyed the show so much. For me in person it was the best Tactica although the two before were awesome as well. The chaps from Hamburg set up such a wonderful and familiar atmosphere and brought us two splendid days. It was wonderful to meet new people and old friends there and share some great time. Of course most German clubs went to Hamburg but there were some chaps from England, Skandinavia and all around the world as well. A perfect occasion to meet those people who are too far away all over the year. Many thanks to Wayne, Alan, Michael, Aly, Theemu, Nick, the Berlin trio, Elmar, Mirco, Dave, Willie and all the others for showing up and making our day.

And to the Tactica team:
So many thanks for organising the show each and every year ! Honestly Tactica 2017 is rock solid in my schedule!


  1. Cracking looking game Stefan, looked and sounded like you had a blast!

  2. Good job.
    Nice pictures,
    magnificent buildings and battle scenes
    and, above all, a fine, a little less known war-topic

  3. Absolutely wonderful Stefan, the table looks brilliant; d you got to play with the Perry brothers, what a fabulous event.

  4. Wow, you game you guys ran looks fantastic. Very cool getting in a game with the Perry brothers! Glad you had fun.

  5. Splendid pictures, looks like a wonderful event!

    1. Yes, really some great time with great hobby fellows from near and far.

  6. Wow, those are two cracking looking games!

  7. Great looking game, and getting to play it with Allen and Michael... well there is a "bucket list" item, if I have ever seen one.

  8. Stunning eye candy Stefan! I can only describe that as inspirational mate!

    1. Many thanks, Millsy.
      The table was indeed a wonderful creation mostly of Bernhard.

  9. What a marvellous spectacle you guys created!


  10. Great looking games on show! Your Egyptian terrain and miniature really do look amazing! Don't know what it is with camel mounted Napoleonics, but they somehow really always look eye catching. And it seems you managed to get my clubmate Teemu to play a game as well :)

    1. Teemu has been a recurring guest and player at our table at least at Tactica 2014, 2015 and 2016.

  11. Thanks for the wonderful game! I had the pleasure to play the French treasure hunters Sunday afternoon. Cheers, Karl

    1. It was great to meat you and play with you again, Karl!

    2. Karl we should open a new Blog : The well known trio from Berlin :)

  12. Saw your Egypt board a lot in the reports from Tactica and it always stood out to me. Never knew it was yours, although i should have expected it!

  13. What an awesome table !! Oo

    You're very lucky : playing with the Perry Bros themselves !! ^^

    Thanks for sharing ^^


    1. Yes, it was indeed a great game with those chaps.

  14. It was a blast to finally meet you Stefan! Your table was a blast. So full of little details.