Friday, November 29, 2013

23rd/24th November, Glasgow ...


GLASGOW ARMATI

Unfortunately I didn't manage to get up to Glasgow til later than planned, and missed Caliban's big Friday night tactica game - I bought into that idea where you get your car serviced before a long trip ... and trust them to finish it on time ...

The good news is that the Glasgow collective have found a new venue ... and it is ideal (adequate free parking, decent rooms and breakfast, a spacious conference suite for our games with modern coffee facilities - and a bar that stays open at night til the last man drops*): good find - Glasgow Campanile** at the SECC.

I only drove round the block 3 times to get the last bit right (which solo driving in Glasgow also isn't too bad).

(scenes from the 2013 Armati Calcutta Cup ...) ..

So after a Friday night that just consisted of beers and snacks with the usual suspects, it was into the Armati fest and Round One: the Calcutta Cup ...

Like many events, you can't play your clubmates/home nation in the first round - this has been achieved for the Glasgow event by configuring the first round as, more or less, Scotland and chums vs England and chums (the chumming being decided by the organisers to get broadly balanced teams) - it counts for the weekend but has its own little trophy, too ...


And here we all are celebrating our victory in bouncing footballer style, teasing tartan and pirate bandanna***

David H joined the English to make us Anglo/Irish (but needs must) and he ended up on the winning side :) ... I contributed a lucky win to the cause so everyone can smile.  In the early years they used to call this the Bannockburn round ... but we scotched that years ago so now it is the Calcutta Cup.

The format is preset (loosely) historical scenarios all provided by the hosts (who also provide implements, markers, dice etc.****) ... preset tables diced for before each round, then the players dice for which army.

There is an army list/scenario notes for both players, plus a deployment screen, and, love it or loath it, each 'board' is a game mat with deployment zones marked out.

I played Crusader vs Mamluk (Crusader), Roman vs Pontic (Roman), Burgundian vs French (Burgundian), Late Roman vs Hun (Roman) and Saitic Egyptian vs Achaemenid Persian (Egyptian).  

That's a fantastic mix of what ancient and medieval wargaming has to offer, so well done to the organisers.

Here are some pics:

(Late Roman)

(a 'Bennett Box' marshaling up against a Pontic battleline mostly of Imitation Legionaries)

(Burgundian Ordonnance)

(Egyptian chariots bundling over a gentle hill to take on the Persians)

Splendid figures all round as I'm sure you will agree.

I got 3 wins out of the 5 games, which is enough to keep me happy - and finished just in the top half.  Mostly my win/loss went with the normal outcome of the scenario I played (yes they are balanced ... and yes, the outcomes do show a pattern) ...

On the other hand, I was disappointed to become embroiled in a rules dispute in game 4 and left not happy about either the issue or the outcome.   Hopefully the host club will be prompted to look at how they play the game and fix some problems.  Most of the 'new' formation arrangements are 'gamey' in their intent: they are also illegal, so it is down to the umpires to know the rules and fix it: and frankly, if they don't know the rules, they should rule _against innovations that are not 'clearly' permitted.  It was like being beamed back into the bad old 80s for a while.

Enough of that.


The weekend finished in good spirit with Meth picking up the trophies and the rest of us various 'gifts' that made us feel silly but welcome.  I will edit in some more detail when it becomes available.

There followed some Armati-moot chat about next year (which will follow the same pattern as this year) ... Bournemouth - London - Paris - Derby - Glasgow (with the usual chat about Britcon - maybe/maybe not).

Suffice to say, the next event is in Bournemouth (March 1st/2nd 2014; Venue: Hotel Royale, Bournemouth): it also follows the 'all provided' formula and has an airport so international visitors would be really welcome.   Email me.

Happy Christmas from the Armati League ... Wargamer and Recon still to come for SoA Shows North!

*which isn't that late these days, but that's a different blog I think! 
** not my first Campanile hotel but easily the best so far ...
***that's a bandanna Bruce is brandishing, not a trophy from Friday night (whatever they tell you!!)
****so players only need bring themselves, plus a set of rules if they intend to refer to them - which, with Armati, isn't usually necessary ...

7 comments:

Caliban said...

Cheers, Phil, it's a shame we didn't get more of a chance to chat. Well done in getting back home in record time, though!

Paul

Simon Miller said...

Golly you do get around, Phil! Sounds like a lot of fun.

Prufrock said...

Sounds like a good day, bar the rule disagreement! Must give Armati another go at some stage.

Cheers,
Aaron

SoA Shows North said...

Thanks for taking the trouble to comment everyone :) ...

Paul, it was the first Sunday trip the entire length of the M6 not to have a single stoppage. Saturday, it can happen, but a November Sunday? Never before ...

Simon ... Glasgow is worth the trip! (but, shh, don't tell everyone ... after a thousand years of rivalry, we have to keep up appearances) ...

Aaron ... the rules spat did surprise me (I thought those days were gone) - but I think one has to be honest about these things. Most of the people you meet through tournaments are fine friends, indeed ... but the format remains problematic in some respects.

The last UK show of the season, pretty much, is Pudsey (Recon) in a week ... then it all goes quiet for a welcome couple of months. Perversely, I'll be using the break to do some travelling (!) .. catching up with family over the holidays ... and trying to progress a 'chariot racing' idea ...

Phil

Simon Miller said...

There is nothing worse than a rules spat. :-(

I've no shows planned until Salute, which seems far, far away, right now.

Stuart Campbell said...

A trifle confused by the claim of gamey rules being played in game 4, as you played me and there was no mention at the time. As you won and won well even more confused, thought we had played in good spirits and in the traditional manner.

Stuart

SoA Shows North said...

I completely agree, Stuart ... our game was Game 5! Certainly so as I list them in the summary earlier.

No question I agree with your take and apologize if you read my comment and were surprised.

No - not that game, not that player.

The gamey formations comment was not limited to the particular dispute that arose in the Huns v Late Romans game (I had that as my Game Four) although that was part of the problem: I also don't believe my opponent set out to gain an unfair advantage ... just if umpires don't oblige players to stick to the well trodden path accepted as fair and reasonable by both sides, eventually the game will become skewed away from the game the authors intended and approved.

As for me winning our game 'well', I think I got it by one combat result and only just.

It was a good game and I look forward to us playing again. Bournemouth, maybe ...

Phil