Tuesday, December 15, 2009
As with everything regarding the Empire of the Sun and Flame, it is difficult to generalize regarding either the Regular Army regiments or the formations of "samurai" collected by the various daimyos. More or less any collection of figures in whatever arrangement pleases the player can be thrown onto the table.
Samurai Battalion -- Every daimyo raised one battalion of samurai which consisted of between 3 and 7 companies mixed and matched from the following assortment.
Headquarters -- 1xCommand Stand (s2), 1x81mm mortar stand, 2xTrucks OR horses
Mounted -- 1xRifle Stand (mounted)
Motorcycle -- 1xRifle Stand (motorcycle)
Light Tank -- 1-2 Light Tanks
Tank -- 1xMedium or Heavy Tank
Artillery Battery -- 1x75mm howitzer, with truck or limber
Motorized -- 1xRifle Stand, 1xTruck
Anti-tank Battery -- 1x37mm gun, 1xTruck
Machine Gun Battery -- 2xHMG stands, and either 2 trucks, or two wagons. Frequently the HMGs were mounted on the wagons as per WWII Russian practice
Infantry Regiment -- These were better regulated, but poorly led, as aggressive officers drifted to the Samurai formations with better pay and higher social regard. While the Romans found the Imperial infantry tenacious and quite capable at the tactical level, the lack of any permanent formation above the regimental level, appointment of political generals based on loyalty and birth, and the lack of support assets crippled them dramatically.
Headquarters -- 1xCommand Stand (s2)
3-4 Rifle Battalions -- 1xCommand Stand (s1), 3xRifle Stands, 1x60mm mortar, 1xMMG Stand
Mortar Battery -- 1x81mm mortar, 1xTruck
Artillery Battery -- 1xFOO stand (mounted), 1x105mm howitzer, 1x37mm AT gun, 2xTruck
Engineer Company -- 1xEngineer Stand, 1xDump Truck
Scout Company -- 1xRifle Stand (bicycle mounted)
Monday, December 14, 2009
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Welcome back to the hills and forests of Fromage III. The Limburgers, those feisty rulers of the poor, embattled world are at it again. They nearly wiped out their own population once a few years back. Then they exported their brand of insanity to the planet Käse and were barely repelled. Now they're facing civil war at home after the recent death of the family patriarch and his final words "to the strongest...".
The UNSC has by this point completely given up hope of ever bringing sanity and peace to this sector. They've tried negotiation. They've tried threats. They've tried embargoes. Now, they're trying money. The UN has paid a number of different private military contractors to give it another try. Foreign forces have once again landed on Fromage III, and for a brief moment it looked like peace and reason might prevail. The Limburger kin stopped fighting each other - but only to arrange their traditional reaction to foreign meddling: blockade.
The mercenary troops have been cut off, and in an attempt to divide and conquer, the Limburgers have allowed a few supplies to reach the area. The starving troops have to grab what they can as quickly as possible. For the beleagured foreign mercs it looked like things couldn't get much worse. Then the Limburgers unleashed their secret weapon: The Media.
Some veteran Con Queso players might remember the last time Media turned up to interfere. Mike Hudak went on a rampage, tossing caution (and victory conditions) to the winds, with the single goal of wiping out ace reporter Brun Hilda and her trusty sidekicks. Well, Mike, you missed. Or maybe GNN cloned her. Or the Limburgers did it. Whatever. The important thing is that she's back. And she's annoyed. And she wants the story... Suitably protected - maybe with orbital bombardment this time.
In a bold move, the local insurgent group, the Tanoose Freedom League (TFL) has taken to the offensive in an attempt to seize control of the local starport. Join in on the fun as Mercenaries, Vilisan Troops, TFL and elements of the Gram Mechanized Battalion fight over a shanty town in the shadow of the local starport.
"Sponsored by TravellerCon, Traveller "
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
The "Deutsches AFRIKAKORPS" (not as in the improperly written form of Afrika Korps on some search engines and via online encyclopedias or the even more incorrect Africa Corp or Africa Corps) was the original and more famous name for the German Sperrverband or "Blocking Force" sent to Libya in February of 1941 during the North African Campaign of World War II. The famous force, with the short-lived name called the AFRIKAKORPS, became a major German contribution to Panzer Army Africa - Panzerarmee Afrika which evolved into the German-Italian Panzer Army - Deutsch-Italienische Panzerarmee and then to Army Group Africa - Heeresgruppe Afrika.
"The end was near." — Voices from the Zombie War
The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of thirty million souls to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet. He recorded the testimony of men, women, and sometimes children who came face-to-face with the living, or at least the undead, hell of that dreadful time. World War Z is the result. Never before have we had access to a document that so powerfully conveys the depth of fear and horror, and also the ineradicable spirit of resistance, that gripped human society through the plague years.
Ranging from the now infamous village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, where the epidemiological trail began with the twelve-year-old Patient Zero, to the unnamed northern forests where untold numbers sought a terrible and temporary refuge in the cold, to the United States of Southern Africa, where the Redeker Plan provided hope for humanity at an unspeakable price, to the west-of-the-Rockies redoubt where the North American tide finally started to turn, this invaluable chronicle reflects the full scope and duration of the Zombie War.
Most of all, the book captures with haunting immediacy the human dimension of this epochal event. Facing the often raw and vivid nature of these personal accounts requires a degree of courage on the part of the reader, but the effort is invaluable because, as Mr. Brooks says in his introduction, "By excluding the human factor, aren't we risking the kind of personal detachment from history that may, heaven forbid, lead us one day to repeat it? And in the end, isn't the human factor the only true difference between us and the enemy we now refer to as 'the living dead'?"
Note: Some of the numerical and factual material contained in this edition was previously published under the auspices of the United Nations Postwar Commission.
Eyewitness reports from the first truly global war
"I found 'Patient Zero' behind the locked door of an abandoned apartment across town. . . . His wrists and feet were bound with plastic packing twine. Although he'd rubbed off the skin around his bonds, there was no blood. There was also no blood on his other wounds. . . . He was writhing like an animal; a gag muffled his growls. At first the villagers tried to hold me back. They warned me not to touch him, that he was 'cursed.' I shrugged them off and reached for my mask and gloves. The boy's skin was . . . cold and gray . . . I could find neither his heartbeat nor his pulse." —Dr. Kwang Jingshu, Greater Chongqing, United Federation of China
"'Shock and Awe'? Perfect name. . . . But what if the enemy can't be shocked and awed? Not just won't, but biologically can't! That's what happened that day outside New York City, that's the failure that almost lost us the whole damn war. The fact that we couldn't shock and awe Zack boomeranged right back in our faces and actually allowed Zack to shock and awe us! They're not afraid! No matter what we do, no matter how many we kill, they will never, ever be afraid!" —Todd Wainio, former U.S. Army infantryman and veteran of the Battle of Yonkers
"Two hundred million zombies. Who can even visualize that type of number, let alone combat it? . . . For the first time in history, we faced an enemy that was actively waging total war. They had no limits of endurance. They would never negotiate, never surrender. They would fight until the very end because, unlike us, every single one of them, every second of every day, was devoted to consuming all life on Earth." —General Travis D'Ambrosia, Supreme Allied Commander, Europe
Monday, December 7, 2009
While the Legions have traditionally been the bulwark against attack, and provide the slogging brute force necessary to crack defensive lines, much of the glory and prestige goes to the Cavalry and the Marines, the two branches traditionally used to crack through weak points in enemy lines and engage in the sweeping maneuver where the superior training and leadership of the Republic's forces can achieve victory at the lowest cost, or at least that's what the doctrine says.
Cavalry Turma (Brigade)
Headquarters – Command(s3 mounted), Signals van
2xCavalry Bandons – Command (s1 mounted), 4xCavalry stands (s3, mounted), 1x81mm mortar (s3, mounted), mounted FOO stand (s1), 1xHMG stand (mounted)
Motorized Bandon - Command (s1), 1xFOO stand (s1), 45mm AT gun (s3), HMG (s3), ATR (s2), 81mm mortar (s3), 3xRifle stands (s3), 4 trucks
Armored Century – Light Tank or Tankette
Artillery Cohort – 2x105mm howitzer, 2xtruck
Engineer Century – Engineer stand with flamethrower, truck
NOTE: In many Cavalry Brigades, between 1 company and a full Bandon of cavalry had been converted to motorcycle usage. In some Brigades, 1 of the motorized battalion's rifle companies was motorcycle mounted instead of trucked.
Headquarters – 1xCommand Stand (s2), 1xFAC stand (s2)
3xRifle Cohorts – 1xCommand Stand (s1), 4xRifle stands, 1xHMG stand, 1x81mm mortar stand, 1xFOO stand (s1)
Engineer Century – Engineer stand with flamethrowers, Truck
Artillery Cohort – 2x75mm Howitzers, 1x45mm AT gun, 3xTrucks
In the past generation, the Cavalry's dominance has been challenged by armored and mechanized forces, but in the initial phase of the Great Central War, no agreed-upon doctrine had been created for these forces, nor had standardization of vehicle types really been settled. Republican armored battalions went into combat with a mixed bag of armored vehicles, and only combat would sort out which designs were winners and which were not.
Later Republican armored units, armored doctrine, and armored vehicles would be guided by the lessons learned painfully by these first formations.
Headquarters – Command stand (s3), truck, signals van
3xMechanized Bandon – Command Stand (s1), 3xRifle Stands with integral ATR (s3), 45mm AT gun (s3), 81mm mortar (s3), 4xtrucks
Armored Bandon – Command Stand (s1), 3xLight tanks, 2xMedium Tanks, 81mm mortar, Rifle Stand, 3 trucks
Artillery Cohort – 2x105mm howitzer, 2xtruck
Engineer Century — Engineer stand with flamethrower (s3), truck
Independent Armored Bandon - These bandons varied wildly in precise organization. The organization given is a typical one, reflecting the prewar authorized strength of the 2nd Armored Bandon, one of two assigned to the Scholae Exerciti, a formation composed of two cavalry turmae, two mechanized turmae, a motorized artillery brigade, and two armored bandons, which spearheaded the initial attack into the Empire of the Sun and Flame after a series of 'border incidents'.
Headquarters Command stand (s1), truck, medium tank
1xHeavy Tank Companies – Heavy Tank
1xMedium Tank Company - Medium Tank
2xLight Tank Companies – Light Tank
Support Company – 81mm mortar, truck
Infantry Company – Rifle stand (s3), Truck
A Wing And A Prayer is a total conversion for the
Homeworld 2 engine, moving the action from space
combat to early twentieth century aerial battles
between a variety of fictional aircraft and airships,
ranging from scout fighters up to ironclad super
Zeppelins. Drawing on the style of games like
"Crimson Skies", and "The Hunt For The Red
Baron" and books like "Jack Black and the Ship
of Thieves" A Wing And A Prayer will thrust the
player into the gold age of flight, as the German
Imperial Airforce and the British Royal Flying
Corps decide the future of the countries far below,
and attempt to uncover why the Kaisers ultimate
in an Arctic storm.
The bowl of the sky was lavender with the dying night.
On this morning, the morning of eighteen October 1896,
It is a world much like our own, except that the Great War
ended in 1916. As the Powers recoiled, exhausted, from the
tragedies of Verdun and the Sommes, Woodrow Wilson was
able to negotiate an Armistice that returned Europe to its
pre-War borders. (For this accomplishment, he was honored
with the Nobel Prize, though this was later tarnished by the
failure of his long-sought League of Nations.) With the forcing
ground of military need removed, aircraft development took
a different path from the one it followed in our world, and
effort that might have been wasted on developing glamorous
but impractical aeroplanes was spent perfecting the far more
capable airships. As the 1920's drew to a close, the world was
peaceful and prosperous, linked by fleets of mighty lighter-
than-air vessels from many nations.
Friday, December 4, 2009
As stated in NQM if the town is captured, then anyone who cannot
find a space in another friendly box is captured by the enemy. Captured
vehicles may be used; captured men cannot. The way this will work
is items captured will be used in the next game but must be in
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Consensus: Star Trek reignites a classic franchise with action,
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Headquarters –Command stand (s3), Signals van (S3)
HQ - Command (s2), 45mm AT gun (s3), 75mm pack howitzer (s2), 81mm (s3), Engineer stand with flamethrower (s3), mounted FOO stand (s1)
3xCohorts - Command (s1), 3xRifle Stands (s3), MMG (s3), HMG (s3), ATR (s2) 81mmmortar (s3)
2xRegiments (1 horse drawn, 1 motorized)
Regiment Command stand (s2), Signals Van, 3xFOO (s1), 3xJeeps
2xLight battalions – 1x75mm, truck or limber
1xMedium battalion – 1x105mm, truck or limber
Cavalry Battalion – Command stand (s1, mounted) 3xRecce Stands (s3, mounted), 1x81mm mortar (s3)
Engineer Battalion – 1xCommand stand (s1) 3xEngineer stands with flamethrowers (s3), 3xTrucks
Anti-tank battalion -- 3x45mm, 3xtrucks
Anti-aircraft battalion -- 3xAAMG, 3xtrucks
Culturally, most of these regions were very similar, having a strict caste system overseen by a hereditary caste, although a merit- and education-based bureaucracy organized on almost Confucian lines provided a means for social mobility for the best of the lower classes. Warfare was stylized and dominated by mounted nobles and their retainers, the mass of the populace being largely unarmed by law and custom, with the exception of certain tenacious hill peoples who provided light-armed infantrymen in lieu of taxes.
Religion is a variation of Zoroastrianism along with a strong ancestor cult and a bushido-like warrior code for the aristocrats.
The Toyahota Shogunate was ushered in with mass armies equipped with rifle-muskets with conical rounds, socket bayonets, and standardized field artillery. However, in order to coopt the various noble houses, after unification the regular infantry was reduced and de-emphasized in favor of the noble muster of horse and the provision for nobles to maintain and command their own infantry regiments or battalions. This system persisted until the beginning of the Great Central War, when its weaknesses were made blatantly obvious by a series of disasters opposing the Swordpoint invasion of the Empire.
Friday, November 27, 2009
The original groups dropped off were a mix of Romans and Gauls scooped up indiscriminately from the middle of a clash between isolated units during Caesar’s conquest of Gaul. The Roman culture and organization was greatly superior, and the fact that the next group deposited was a cohort from the 2nd century Legio XV Apollinarius, scooped up along with native wives from what is today Uzbekistan reinforced the cultural dominance.
Byzantine line troopers and a handful of Hunnic mercenaries from Justinian’s expedition to Northern Africa that were believed lost at sea also were deposited in the same area, and as they were recognizably Roman and Latin-speaking, they were easily assimilated. The same could not be said for the Apache tribe deposited shortly thereafter, who remain a recognizable cultural minority to this day.
There were several more occasions where Byzantines of progressively later eras were deposited, then a gap of several hundred years, followed by the deposition of a group of Greeks of the 1919-1922 war with Turkey, cut off and surrounded by Turks, who remember only a bright light and awakening on a beach.
Politically, the structure of the Republic owes much to the Republic. Senators elect a pair of Consuls, who however remain Consul for Life. Unfortunately, the politics within the Senate are so vicious and violent that over ¾ of the Consuls die violently. Succession crises are fairly common.
Prior to the Great Central War, Swordpoint forces were a mix of heavy infantry units and cavalry in the Expeditionary Forces, questionable home defense forces, and a powerful Navy with ground forces of its own.
Friday, November 20, 2009
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009