Friday, April 8, 2011

The "Training Game" -- Some Thoughts

My goodness, how did a month go by since my last post? I'll have to blame "real life" issues like another gout attack. Indeed, I'm trying to fight another one off as I type . . . I just seem to like the wrong kinds of food, I guess . . . *sigh*.

However, I've done some thinking about a "training game" before starting my Afristan Campaign. Since none of the players that I've lined up have ever played "The Sword and the Flame", I figure that it would be a good idea to introduce them to the basics in a "training game.

I'll set it up for two British players and two Pathan players . . . those being the only natives that I currently have painted . . . yes, I need to schedule a painting day once my latest order of figures from Great Endeavors arrives with Dervishes and Zulus.

One British player will have been on a foot patrol when they came across some civilians who need rescue from a large number of Pathans. This force will consiste of:
  • 1 senior Lt. (on foot) in command of the following troops:
  • 1 platoon of 20 Sepoys with British Lt and native NCO
  • 1 ten-man squad of British soldiers with NCO
  • small group of carbine-armed civilians (no leader)
  • some wounded civilians
They will be "pinned down" (general situation, not the game "pinned" mechanic) in and around a pair of small buildings.

Word having reached a nearby foort, there will be second British "rescue" force consisting of the following:
  • 1 senior Lt. (on foot) in command of the following troops:
  • 1 platoon of 20 Sepoys with British Lt and native NCO
  • 1 ten-man squad of British soldiers with NCO
  • 1 ten-man squad of Gurkhas with NCO
  • 1 civilian (armed with carbine)
  • 6 mules with three muleteers armed only with melee weapons
I will keep the number of Pathans a mystery for the time being . . . but they include units armed with jezails, with rifles and with only melee weapons. The mounted civilian who managed to reach the fort said that he thought that there were probably "a couple of hundred tribesmen" . . . but he's a civilian, what does he know?

I've deliberately not included mounted troops, gatling guns or artillery (unless the Pathans have some of these) because I want the players to only have to concentrate on the basic mechanics.

By the way, the Pathan players will each have their own long-edge half of the table. The relief force will enter on the short-side table end farthest from the "pinned" force. Table is 5' x 11' and will have a variety of terrain. The Pathans will record their deployments of any "hidden" units . . . those firing on either British force must, of course, be placed on the table top.

My current thought is to allow both British forces to "move" one unit each on any red card; and both Pathan forces to "move" one unit each on any black card. However, for shooting, I think I'll assign a suit to each player . . . although once one player has fired all of his units, his suit will also belong to his fellow for the remaining firing.

Of course, some (or all) of this may change . . . but for now, this is what I'm thinking of.

-- Jeff


  1. It sounds a very promising scenario, Jeff. I'm looking forward to an AAR and your thoughts.

  2. pretty straight forward, looking forward to doing either the paint day or the tabtletop!

  3. May 29 : looking to organize the game day.