Monday, June 5, 2017


Once again, Robert (aka, "Robbie"), organized a gaming weekend at a small conference facility associated with his workplace in Vermont. As with the previous "Robbie Con" held in September, this gathering included miniatures gamers from our club as well as good friends from Robbie's board gaming circle. It ran from Friday night through Sunday morning.  This gaming "retreat" is just the sort of thing that I as a young gamer always imagined that I and my pals would be able to do as adult gamers--too bad we had to bypass "adult" and become "old" gamers to realize it (well, youth is wasted on the young, anyway). 

One interesting feature of this particular gathering was that we had three Roberts in attendance: Robert (aka "Robbie" our host); Robert (aka "Bob O" in this report), whom you may recall as Von Bob from the Danish Delight, Battle of Dybbol report; and Robert ("the Dutchman"), a stalwart from Robbie's gaming circle. Thus, it was very much a Robert ("Robbie") Con (sorry, couldn't help myself). 

I'm squeezing in this report in between returning from Robbie Con and preparing to depart on a business trip for the rest of the week. Thus, I haven't had the time to produce the usual graphic embellishments.  It will be a more stripped-down "normal" report.  As usual, in the below, you may clix pix for BIG PIX.

I arrived on Friday evening, and was involved in three miniatures games over the course of Friday and Saturday (a 28mm Ancients, a 15mm Napoleonics, and an X-Wing).  I also played in one collaborative war/card game (Grizzled), which was ably moderated by Robert the Dutchman. 

Unfortunately, I didn't get any shots of the Grizzled game, but we eventually completed a sequence without winding up among the Honored Dead of the Great War. Thanks to Robert the Dutchman for guiding us through No Man's Land!

Bob O setting the scene for his Gauls vs Romans game.
The Friday night game was Ancients using group member Ralph's Hannibal at the Gates rules system. The game was ably prepared and hosted by Bob O using his extensive and superb 28mm Romans and Gauls. In the above, you can see rules author Ralph (center of the picture) keeping a watchful eye on Bob as he explains his rules.  
Bob's superb Gauls and Romans.
This game would be a head-on slugfest...
 ...pitting the discipline and training of a smaller Roman force against a wall of charging Gauls...

...I was among the Romans. In the end, it "came down to the Triarri" (the battle line shown immediately above left and right), who wheeled into the hole that had been torn in the Roman line just in time to turn back the threat. The Roman army morale was getting dire, but the the Gauls cracked first. A near run thing and a great game (a quiet march through the Teutoburger Wald is scheduled to help the traumatized legionnaires recuperate).  Next up was 15mm Napoleonics...
Robert (Robbie) sets the scene for his Battle of Lutzen, 1813, game...
...the game was played using Robert's Napoleonic rules (a work in progress that allows you to play large battles, very workable and well received thus far).  The scenario replicated surprise by having the allies start within striking distance of the forward French line. My Prussian command in the center (above right) at start is set up and poised to storm the town at the pivot in the French line, which would be stoutly held by AJ who was commanding the French center...

...above left, Charlie looking down the intended axis of advance of his French Guard. The French plan was for the Guard to come in and hit the depleted Prussians in the center. The gauntlet of Bob O's Russians on the allied right, however, would prove to be too much for the French Guard to run and arrive in shape to take on the Prussians (thankfully!).  Top right, Mike C's Russians and Prussians were engaged in heavy fighting for the town on the French right/center.  Eventually, the town would fall to the Allies. Farther out on the Allied left, the Russians were getting mauled, paying the price for keeping the French right from influencing the action in the center...

...where (above), my Prussians, eventually managed to take both town squares and fend off a last gasp French counterattack. Much reduced by the hard fighting, the Prussians would start shifting to face the onslaught of the French Guard from the right, who would (thankfully) not arrive thanks to Bob O's Russians.  Another hard pounding and near run thing, this game was called at that point with advantage to the allies.  Next we were transported to a Galaxy Far Away... an X-Wing affair hosted by Ralph. Yes, that same fellow who authored the earlier- mentioned ancients rules: such range!

Given the table configuration and the number of players, Ralph came up with an innovative plan to use two circular tables (dubbed the "infinity table" given the figure 8 outline). Where the two table discs touched they were "joined" by a wormhole, signified by the orange and yellow spinner from my unplayed Nuclear War retro card game (visible in the picture below).  If a ship exited one table at the wormhole, we placed the spinner in the center of the other table and gave it a spin. The ship arrived at the indicated point on the perimeter of the new table.  This worked out well (and proved irresistible: people just had to run ships through the wormhole to see where they would come out).  

Ralph Putting Down his X-Wing Game on the "Infinity Table"

On the far table, Mike and Bob O beat up on the lone Rebel Charlie, who was still gamely putting up a fight with a ship or two at the end (AJ managed to shoot a ship from our table over to him).
On our table, Rebels AJ (of AJ's Wargaming Blog) and myself chased Imperial Ralph around, chipping away at his force.  Ralph skillfully evaded and counterpunched against the odds until Mike's ships started coming through the wormhole to reinforce him.  Ultimately, the Force was with the Empire this day, and the Rebels would have to break off to fight another day. Normally, I'm not a fan of aerial or naval games where you plot movement for individual craft,  but the mechanics in this system managed to elegantly sidestep my usual frustrations.  Since this was the last game in the series, I was running out of steam and was also distracted by playing, so I didn't get any pictures of the action....
...however, fellow blogger AJ (above), of AJ's Wargaming Blog , was in residence, and will very likely have a few shots of interest from this and the other games, one of which ran on Friday afternoon before I arrived: something to watch for.
Robert, Our Gracious Host and Organizer: Many Thanks!


  1. Good report out, Ed! Hard to beat spending a weekend with a group of like minded guys.

  2. Love to see those games Ed. The thick bases and the effect you get en masse are real eye candy.

  3. Geez, you guys have a lot of conventions out East!

    I had to smile about all the Roberts...about a month ago I was playing in a game where we had 8 players and of those 8 we had 5 Mikes!


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