Sunday, February 17, 2013

Fuson-Con II: A Day of GASLIGHT and LSNC Gaming

Yesterday, Saturday 2.17, Buck Surdu, Dave Wood, Duncan Adams, and I went up to Gettysburg, PA for Fuson-Con II. Fuson-Con is a small day of gaming hosted by Sam Fuson and Kathy Toft at their farm just outside of Gettysburg. We went up to run some games, and Sam invited a bunch of his friends over to play. It was a great day of gaming and good food.  Sam and Kathy are great hosts.  Sam had two ping-pong tables set up in his downstairs, so we could run two games at the same time. There was about 16 folks there to play.
(As usual, click on any photo to see it larger)

A view of the table before the action. The Germans are at the far end, the fort is in the middle, and the expedition troops and tractor are on the closer end of the table

The first game I ran, was an old favorite GASLIGHT scenario of mine: Victoria Hawks and the Lost Roman Colony.  This game features Our Heroine, Victoria, and some of her friends, on an African expedition in the 1880's, and they have just stumbled upon a lost colony of Romans deep in the African jungles.   At the same time, a treacherous Roman Priestess from the colony has alerted a nearby German colonial garrison that there is a lot of treasure in the Romans' fort, so the Germans set out to take the treasure.
The German forces move out.  Krieghosen in the foreground, and the walkers in the distance.
The Germans have two Sea Battalion units, two Natives units, two steam walkers armed with gatlings, and four "Krieghosen" armored suits.  Victoria and friends have a unit of British expedition troops, three Roman units, a steam-tractor with gatling and a small cannon, and the Romans' secret weapon: six giant gorillas.  There's just something about a scenario with Giant Gorillas vs Germans that is a crowd pleaser. :-)
The battle rages. In the foreground, a giant gorilla, with some help from the expedition troops, takes on  a unit of natives, while another gorilla goes after one of the Krieghosen attacking the wall.

The game began with the Germans advancing along their entire front.  They need to move the Krieghosen armored suits, which are equipped with powered circular saw attachments on one of the hands, up to the Roman fort in order to cut a hole in the timber walls.  It's their only means of accessing the inside of the fort.
  On turn two, the giant gorillas arrive from the jungle along the table edge.  These are the Roman side's best chance of battling all the German vehicles.
The giant gorillas battle the steam walkers and a unit of Germans. One gorilla has fallen, and is being encircled by German troops
     The Germans did really well, on their vehicles' Sustain rolls, and it looked like they were going to be unstoppable in their advance to the walls.   The British steam tractor, however, had trouble all game rolling it's Starts and Sustains, and spent most of the game stuck behind the fort, as the tractor's commander tried to find the operators manual.
A gorilla bashes a steam walker causing an internal explosion in the engine compartment. The walker's commander, bottle in hand, climbs nonchalantly from the wreckage.
     Eventually the German vehicles began to fail their Sustains and their advance towards the wall slowed, just as the Apes reached them.  Four of the apes went after the two German steam walkers, and the other two moved to intercept the Krieghosen moving towards the wall.  Fierce battles developed as the apes tried to bash the walkers on one side of the fort, and the natives attacked one of the apes on the other side.  A couple of the apes fell down (rolling a 20 on a Scuffle roll in melee) and were quickly swarmed and dispatched. 
Circle of carnage.  By games end this gorilla, with some help from the expedition troops, had chewed through two native units. Meanwhile, in the background, the Expedition's steam tractor finally moves up into the fight.
 In the end, the apes took their toll, with both German walkers out of commission, and the Sea Battalion companies so badly battered,  and natives decimated, that even if the Krieghosen troopers were able to cut a hole (which they were just about to do), there would be no chance of fighting the fresh Roman troopers in the fort and winning.   So the game was declared a victory for Victoria and her Roman compatriots.
    While I was running my game, Dave Wood was running a game of Fate of Battle (Look, Sarge, No Charts: Napoleonics) using his collection of 25mm figures.  Sadly, I didn't get a chance to get away from my game to take any pictures.
    Both of the morning games ended around 1:00 PM, and we took a break for lunch, as the second games of the day were set up.  For the afternoon session I ran a John Carter of Mars by GASLIGHT game, and Buck Surdu did a Look, Sarge, No  Charts: WWII game with Poles vs Germans in 1939.
A view of the table at the beginning of the game.
     My John Carter game was a multi-sided scenario, where every player had a pair of objectives to achieve during the game.  Some factions were friendly to others, some were neutral, and some were enemies.  All the players were not quite sure what the objectives were of the players around them, and whether they may be friend of foe. 
Thark leader (red robes) vs Thark leader (blue robe).  Two clans of Tharks battle it out.
Everyone set about achieving their goals, and the carnage soon began to mount. Unfortunately John Carter was killed in an early round of melee, so his faction's ability to help Dejah was seriously hampered.
A view of the action in the center of the table
     The overall plot, was John Carter trying to free Dejah Thoris from a group of Hill Martians who had captured here.  The Hill Martians with Dejah were attempting to transfer her to another group of Hill martians coming from the other side of the table.  And other factions were trying to either kill rivals, or John Carter, or get Dejah for themselves.  It was a fun free for all!
The slumbering White Ape is awoken! My games seemed to have a monkey theme this time. :-)

  This was a scenario that I had put together just for this con, so I wasn't sure how the balance would work out.  For that reason, I brought along a cave for a White Ape to appear from, in case one side proved to have too heavy an advantage.  This happened, with one of the Hill Martian players easily marching towards their compatriot to get Dejah, and the other Hill Martian player, the one with Dejah, easily overcoming an attack by a group of Tharks (four-armed green Martians) and moving towards the rendevous. So, as the transfer was going down, as GM I placed the White Ape in play, to the groans of all the players.  Sadly though, he rolled lousy moves numbers, (we were using the optional 6+d6 movement rates) so barely got far from his cave before the game ended.
A big melee develops as two rival groups of Red Martians battle each other, and a unit of Hill Martians joins in the fray.
    In the end one of the Thark players and one of the Hill Martian players had each achieved both of their objectives, so were declared tied for the winner.  A great time was had by all.
A unit of Red Martians moves up in an attempt to rescue Dejah

The transfer goes down. The Hill Martian leader with Dejah Thoris prepares to hand her off to the approaching Hill Martian leader.

  Meanwhile, Buck was doing his WWII game, and since my game ended before his, I was able to go over and take some photos.  The Germans were attacking a force of Poles and trying to capture a couple towns; but with some really bad dice rolling, the German attack bogged down, and by game's end the Poles were actually counter attacking.  Nonetheless, all seemed to be having a good time.
A view of the WWII table with Poles vs Germans

Germans attempt to assault a Polish held woods.

A Polish player indicates a German force she is attempting to spot.
  It was a great day of gaming, and we are already looking forward to the next time we can get up and run some more games. A big thanks go out to Sam and Kathy and the great group of games we had.

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