Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Ed on All the King's Men at MCon15

Another MCon has come and gone. Ray was able to attend this year and we headed up to Austin on Friday afternoon. Friday's shopping and gaming was slow, with no real "Ooo!" moments. Saturday went much better. Maybe too much better!

We participated in Steve Miller's "Battle of Miller's Crossing" on Saturday morning. This was a hypothetical AWI game using All The King's Men rules and 54mm figures from Ken Cliffe, proprietor of the like-named company. To sum it all up: brilliant!!

Another view of Steve Miller's game (and Ed's studious attentiveness to the rules brief)
The rules were simple and fun. Ray and I were running the games ourselves by the second turn. They use a deteriorating "resolve" mechanism that forces the player to make decisions on how to use his dwindling resources. All of which is fed by an ingenious use of colored dice and markers. And while the game uses cards to activate units, there really wasn't any "dead time" for either of us.

We had 9 American and 7 British units and completed the game in just over an hour.  Then we set up again with a couple extra units. Mark R. sat in as the British while Ray ran the game and taught the rules. Again, we finished quickly-about 75 minutes.

The rules are fun and interactive. We got "stuck in" quickly and reached a decision. How often does that happen in today's games? ATKM appears to have filled the spot that LPE used to hold: visually appealing, quick, tense, and FUN!

ATKM and its figures have won us over. Ray and I were planning an AWI game for MCon 2013 anyway. Now we have our rules. What about figures?

Although we had already begun collecting 28s (Ray especially so!) we have not painted any yet. So we have decided to go 54mm. The figures look good even with relatively basic paint jobs and painted on "dip."

Ray bought a British "Army in a Box" and the boxed set of Queen's Rangers. That gives him 4 infantry units, 2 light infantry, a gun battery, a cavalry unit, and two generals. Later, he added a box of plastic woodland Indians.

I only bought an American "Army in a Box" with 2 infantry, 1 light infantry, 1 gun battery and one general. Later I will decide on what to buy for the other half. Plus we both bought the rules, terrain, dice, and markers.

Mike G. enjoyed the game, too. When he saw me buying Americans and knowing Ray will be in Georgia, Mike bought a British army.

Ray and I spent the rest of the weekend reading, re-reading, and discussing the rules and the game.

Sunday morning was the flea market. One table was insufficient to hold what I had brought! But I was able to clear enough from the flea market that just about covered my ATKM purchases and MCon fees.

Once we got back to San Antonio, Ray and I continued our new obsession with ATKM. We found another set of playing cards to use with our games on Amazon. We downloaded the free version of the rules. And then we started a blog to document our progress.

All in all, MCon started out slow. I was even considering that it might be our last one. But ATKM not only saved the convention, it reinvigorated us to dive into a new project for next year.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for all your support, guys! Your enthusiasm is infectious.