Blog discription

What will you find here? Ramblings from an aging gamer-miniature painter. When I first started out in this hobby computers were in their infancy and finding other gamers could only be done by going to conventions or as in my case bumping into somebody who happened to see me reading "Panzer Leader" on the school bus. Look how far we have come! The internet has allowed our small community to be able to connect on a level I never dreamed of when I was but a small lad. What I do hope you will find here is something interesting from one wargamer/miniature painter to another. I paint miniatures somewhat decently, so I will be posting some pictures of my work, and perhaps a review or two of games and/or miniatures. Most of all this is just about having fun and anything I post here is meant to be for that reason.

Monday, May 4, 2015

2nd annual Saga pilgrimage

It's amazing how little one can get done hobby wise when one's Wife is on vacation. Though I must admit it was rather fun spending time with her and away from the hobby as sometimes that can seem like a chore. Now I am back to it so on with the story.

Last week my very good friend Skip and I got together for our 2nd annual Saga extravaganza weekend of gaming. Skip lives down in northern Georgia and I in southern Michigan so it's about an 11 hour car drive difference. Last year we met up in Lexington Kentucky, but this year my pal drove an extra hour north and we met up in Cincinnati. Well actually it was Erlanger Kentucky which is just a tad south of Cincinnati. Unlike my good friend who drives alone, I am fortunate enough to have my own personal chauffeur in my Wife. Actually she enjoys driving and going anywhere as long as it gets her out of the house. A toy soldier painting/playing man can not tell you what an added bonus this is to a hobbyist.

Since our last meeting I have painted up exactly one more Army (Warband), while my friend turned up the heat and added five more. He brought all seven of his Armies with him, so we would have no shortage of options. 

We both arrived Friday evening safe and sound at our destination and met up for dinner and a nice chat about what we would do the next day. I was also presented with a very cool surprise from Skip. He had purchased some figures from a fellow who thought they were Vikings and they turned out to be Saxons. Since Skip has Saxons already he touched them up and presented them to me as a gift. Did I mention Skip is the coolest man on the planet? Well he is!

Our plan was to try and get three Saga games in on game day which may not sound like a lot, but we aren't as young as we once were and sitting on your butts all day can be pretty tiring;) We decided to play "Clash of Warlords" for all our scenarios as we wanted to hack and slash and not do anything fancy shcmancy (after having driven 11 hours to meet) using 6 point warbands.

Saturdays first game began with my Franks (700 AD) against Skip's Moors. I was excited about facing off with this Army except my buddy thought it would be cool to sneak in a few Naffata dudes which made several of his units unable to take advantage of his battle board. I was freaked out at first, not having faced these interesting ancient day flame thrower units before, but by the end of the game I learned not to fear them. This of course after I lost because I thought I needed to sweep them from the field with a massed Frankish Cavalry charge leaving them exposed to his counter attack handing him the victory points on a platter for his first win.
The above pictures are of the Frank/Moor setup. We used a tan table cloth to represent a more arid climate, and a few other pieces, the only thing we didn't have were trees. Unfortunately those got left in Georgia , but it did not take away the fun we were having, with the added bonus we didn't have to move any out of the way either;)

In our second game we went with the Franks again, but this time against Skips Byzantines. Both these battle boards are ones that need playing a bit to figure out what there full capabilities are and how to use their abilities in combinations. This would be my third battle ever with the Franks but I felt I was starting to see the light of day with how to work their battle board. So I believe I had the advantage over Skip as this would be his first time using the Byzantines. In this battle I was more patient and I danced around a little bit to get into a good position and have my units supporting each other. Skip probably could have won this game had he also exercised more patience in maneuvering his foot units to attack my foot using what I think are some pretty cool abilities for his infantry. Instead he took his Cavalry on a long march around my flank. It was like slow motion as I had plenty of time to set up a proper greeting for him and like in my first game, Skip found out what it was like to charge in and have no support and get counter attacked and wiped off the field. This pretty much ended the second confrontation.
The above pictures are of the Frank vs Byzantine setup at the start.

By the time our third game arrived we were both getting a little tired and decided to do only a 4 point battle. The added bonus is Skip will be heading to Nash Con to do a tourney where they are allowing you to enter 6 points, but only use 4 of those points. So you can change your army a bit knowing what Army you will face next, but not it's composition.

Before we set up to play we worked out a trade for my Anglo Danes. I have played them exclusively this last year against my home base opponent and have grown tired of them. Plus they didn't really fit my style of play. Skip was happy enough to do the trade, though I believe he did it more out of kindness to me then to get the Danes. I ended up trading for his Welsh and was so happy to get them that our next game I used them. Skip decided to use the Danes as well!

The game was an absolute blast. I had the most fun of the entire day. The Welsh board was cool and playing with only 4 points, I feel, is a bit more challenging.

The game ended up being a cliff hanger and came down to turn 5. I was a few points ahead in the game and Skip knew it and needed to do something about it. He pulled off a calculated maneuver that brought him face to face with my Warlord. If he could kill my Warlord he would win! To get to my Warlord he used side by side with what was left of his 2 figure Huscarl unit and blew through my Warriors though I reduced his Huscarl unit down to 1 figure. Both our armies where battered and he charged into my Warlord with one figure able to support his warlord. This way he could absorb two hits without losing his Warlord, while I had no support and could only absorb one hit. I had a good roll and caused 3 hits against his Warlord, while he caused 2 hits to me. Both of us only needed one save to win the day! Skip rolled first and not a single five or six appeared! It looked like he was doomed to defeat! That is until I rolled... not a single five or six. Both our Warlords crumpled to the ground and the game was over with a draw.
The above scene right before turn 5. In our excitement I forgot to take shots of what we did not know would be the climatic end!

It was a glorious day and we went out to celebrate the way veteran warriors only know how to and that was for some brewskis and steak dinners!

Until next year my friend!




  1. Sounds like you had a great time! Must admit that Clash of Warlords is probably my favourite scenario as well.

    1. Yes I did Lee, it was a blast, and Clash of Warlords keeps it nice and simple. It's all about the shield wall, none of the nonsense trying to capture a tree sort of stuff;)

  2. What a grand time it was! Good friends, good food and lots of Saga. Looking forward to the 3rd annual event!

    1. This time you have to stay at the Hotel of my choosing Mr. so start saving up your pennies;)

  3. Wargaming the way it should be done! Nice.

    1. Aaron! Nice of you to drop by and have a read. It was worth the trip just to see my pal, and we got to push toy soldiers around as a bonus! Can't beat that.... well maybe a date with Stevie Nicks, she is soooo dreamy;)