Monday, July 18, 2011

Big BOB Multiplayer game.....

This weekend we played out a large scale Back of Beyond game set in 1920 in Manchuria, Mongolia and the short lived Far East Republic in eastern Siberia.
This was a Colin Jack special with multiple players, hidden objectives, special events and lots of back stabbing.

Dai-Li Sun newsreel crew - bringing us Dave O'Briens view of the news...
There were 8 factions in the game as follows.
Red 1 - Bill Gilchrist (Mikhail Frunze). Objective establish Soviet power in the Far East.
Red 2 - Hugh Wilson ( Alexander Krasnoshchyokov). Objective to establish a Far Eastern Republic - his empire actually shrank!
White 1 - Martin Gibson (Semenov). Objective to amass as much money as possible.
White 2 - Dave Paterson (Mad Baron Ungern-Sternberg). Objective to establish a new Mongol empire.
Chinese - Dave O’Brien (Chiang Tso-Lin). Objective to re-capture Urga from Mongols.
Czech - Kevan Gunn (Jan Syrovy). Objective to control all stations and exit troops via Vladivostok.
Anglo-American - Ray and Isaac Neal (Gen W Graves). Objective assist Czechs to reach Vladivostok.
Japanese - Colin Jack (Gen Mitsue). Objective control as many resources as possible.

Chita - base of the eventual White 1 winners

Most factions had 3 units and 1 support weapon. Czechs had 2 units and 2 support weapons.
All started in a town which comprised 2 buildings and railway station. Anglo-American & Japanese shared Vladivostock which had 4 buildings and station.
Every 5 turns was a game day and revenue was collected from buildings and stations currently held and Resources held (mines, docks, farms). Revenue could be held or spent on reinforcements.
Czechs had no start town but held the Imperial Gold Reserve which gave them same income as a town.

Final victory assessed on basis of control of buildings, value of unused cash, and 2 specials - control of Tsar & family; control of Gold Reserve.

The tactical part of the game was played using Chris Peers’ Contemptible Little Armies rules. Simple and enjoyable rules - but as I discovered you can use units very quickly.

Mad baron rides down Chinese bandits - a crafty special event

How the game played
On the western side of the table in the area of Irkutsk and Chita my Red forces met disaster at the hands of both White players supported by the Czechs who reduced them down to a single holdout in Irkutsk. They were saved by support from Moscow - my thanks to the umpire - and by the Mad baron becoming engaged in a full scale war with the Chinese.
The Czechs only took one building in the game the church in Irkutsk and discovered the Tsar and his family hiding in the loft. Strangely they had been missed by the entire Red Army! The Czechs did have one bit of bad luck when they were attacked by 2 Yetis - who’s hides the Czechs sold to the Smithsonian collection

Dave Paterson - The Mad Baron - ponders his strategy...
On the east side of the table the Japanese and Anglo- Americans came to an agreement to divide Vladivostock and fought the Reds of the Far East Republic. An apparently limitless stream of US and UK units were thrown into a long campaign around the coal mine which eventually fell to them.

The Chinese after flirting with action against the Reds moved to attack the Mongols and even had the support of the only aircraft to appear over the table as a special event. It was eventually driven to the ground by a sandstorm! The Chinese did at the end of the game get to attack the yurts of Urga but were held back by the Mongolian militia. The Japanese in the last day of the campaign tried a coup in Vladivostosk but were fought to a stalemate by the Anglo-Americans and agreed an armistice.
Chinese airpower swoops on the Mongol hordes
The Czechs did get to all the way Vladivostock with the Tsar and his treasure but that was not enough to swing the result to them. The game was won decisively by Martin Gibson as White 1 based in Chita who played a quiet game except for attacking the Reds in Irkutsk and shooting a few Chinese and steadily secretly collected a huge amount of money. The least successful players were the 2 Reds. With extra support from Moscow I came in last just holding 2 buildings in Irkutsk. Hugh Wilson as Red 2 based in Khabarovsk was worn down by the constant attacks from Vladivostock whilst also engaging in a war with the Whites of Chita and the Chinese.

Despite my disasters it was fun! Here is the link to the Flickr photostream with all the photos from the game.

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