Archive for September, 2012

Magister Militum in Canino 2012

A lot of events in these days. So I am behind schedule with my reports. Be patient! This is a brief report about the tenth DBA tournament in Rome, organised by me and my Legio Palatina chaps. Well, the first note is that it wasn’t in Rome but in Canino, a town north of Rome where Narciso lives. The municipal authorities gave us a room and the place is peaceful and a little bucolic.

We went to Canino the day before to find room, tables and seats. We had some troubles, changed three times the place, competed with local Red Cross (!) for tables and seats, but we found what was necessary at last. We bought bottles of prime quality olive oil to give free to participants, and some cheese directly from producers to bring with us at home. And in the meantime we tested our armies at Narciso’s home together with a new entry: Gabriele. Here you can see Diego while he is doing what he likes more: teaching strategy.

The day after, the tournament day, he had 13 participants, an odd number, so I sacrificed myself and I didn’t play. I brushed up the DBA rules only to act as umpire and not as a player and my army fought only in the tests.

While we were playing with little toys, another child was playing with a computer. Bigger children played 4 games, 1 hour and a quarter long, two in the morning and two in the afternoon. The lists were based on the late Roman era.

We were inside a local small museum about archaeological finds in the area, precisely from a destroyed medieval castle and from Vulci, an Etruscan (Roman, later) city in that neighbourhood. More photos than material objects, but the museum is still growing with new donations. While the tournament was playing some people give them 3 coins and a fibula they incidentally found in the garden, 2000 years old things. We have got a lot of history in our country… Here in the photo the president of the Gruppo Archeologico Romano, the Canino section, owners of the rooms.

The lunch moment. Well, two hours are not properly a “moment”, but restaurateurs are a bit slow and it was a little demanding an à la carte three-course meal with side dishes, pizza as bread, wine and coffee. Burp! Sorry…

Our heroes, our duces, got together to elect the magister militum! A beautiful day with challenging rules and great people.


My arena

Exactly two years ago I started this blog. Now I have published 237 posts, that is one post every 3 days! A heavy duty!!! When I began this thing I didn’t know precisely what to write and if I can run it for so long. Well, now I think that I have still a lot of things to say. My only regret is that my English language isn’t perfect… but I have to live with it!

Well, this is my arena. Made by my friend Pippo and painted by my father. Pippo gave me the arena during the Agliana convention. It is made by cardboard and railway modelling bricked strip, glue, scotch-tape. All is designed to be placed inside a box for laptops to be transportable. After only (!) 5 months I found the time to finish off it. You can see on this post its initial colours. I painted the engraved stones with my magic wash black mix (polish plus black acrylic ink) on the grey surface and the result is great. For the ground I used a sand paint and my magic wash chestnut mix thinned with water, but the final impression was ugly, as a flat yellow surface covered with litres of dried blood! To give a more delicate appearance I painted several layers of thinned sand paint. Better than before but I think that could resemble more a pizza with dried mozzarella over tomato sauce than a reddish brown ground mixed to sand. Next time I have to give a better look to the ground. Yes, there will be a next time, another arena…


Rufina 2012: my games

More on Rufina convention. This time some photos and words on the game that I played.

Because it was the 8th of September, the day that remind us the escape of king and government during the war, leaving the State and the Army without orders, we played a game with Operation Squad WW2 rules. The setting was pretty basic and a little scratch. We wanted to reproduce a fight of Italians versus Germans. The firsts were desperately trying to save themselves and the Country while Italy was collapsed as nation, the latter were invading the territory while were only a few in a foreign place where their former comrades switched sides for the Allies but without knowing it!

We made some mistakes because it was the fist time we play with these rules. My friend Pippo of Pippo’s Blog fame, fought with a fallschrimjager squad even if he wore a t-shirt with a commie red star on the national flag and the writing “always partisans”! I had got standard Italian troops instead.

After a lot of promises, I organised a demo of my Ferrum et Gloria for Pippo. He wanted to try these rules and in the future he will run a full playtest for me, based on the written text, to understand if all is clear. I hope he will play an entire campaign to tweak the system points and the added rules. Bad lucky dices for me this time, so the test was not so valid to state the full potential of the rules. But Pippo liked it.

Here you can see my new arena, made by Pippo and painted by my father under my direction. Small, portable, elliptical.

Sunday an Anticamente tournament was held in Rufina. The first time with my 10mm Roman legion. And I wore my tourist t-shirt with a big “SPQR”, a real statement of Roman creed! Last time I played with these rules it was almost a year ago. So I had only a lot of good dice result to survive to enemy armies. However I know something about this game: I reached the forth place on eight participants. I had to leave early due to distance, and a fake photo was taken while I receive the cup for the third place because maybe I could reach that place in case a player would lost more pieces. Now I haven’t got the cup but only a photo. Yes, but together with my friend Fabio.


Rufina 2012: the convention

Along the Arno river, north of Firenze, among the Tuscany hills, there is a small town (Rufina) with a villa where a convention was held the 8th-9th of September weekend. It called people from the centre of Italy because of the position of the town. An opportunity to meet hardcore gamers like us.

It was the most beautiful place that we ever used for a convention. We had got so much space that we wasted it. We had got the main building and two other little edifices, and below there were a huge wine cellar with a wine museum (!) and a tavern. Those surroundings are famous for wine and a vineyard is in the garden. They served us free food the first day too. The weather was good and a little hot.

During those days three tournaments was held (Anticamente, Armati, Shako II), some demo tables was presented and almost ten vendors were in the place with their stands.

A Saga scenario was present with its Viking raiders. I never played it but I think it is a really good game. With some inspired Ganesha style rules among the others.

A very large bi-dimensional wargame was setted in the basement. It represent the WWII Russian front from Moscow to Stalingrad. You cannot do it at home. Some memorabilia was showed in the cabinets.

Stacked cardboard counters. A lot of. There were huge fights on the Russian front. Motherland versus Fatherland.

Breitenfeld 1631 mega-game! Swedish vs Imperials played with almost 1200 miniatures (I have not counted them) in the 28mm scale on floor area of 16 square meters. They used an Armati Advanced tweaked version.

It is weird to watch 28mm miniatures and found them so similar to 6mm ones. And a little crammed to manoeuvre. Too big to play?

The overall view is really impressive. The largest bases ever done I suppose.


Magister Militum is here

Every year my club organises a DBA tournament for our annual Italian DBA championship dedicated to Dionigi Ioghà, its creator. This one is the tenth year (!) and the theme of the event is the late Roman age, with lists renamed as the armies of the provincial duces (generals). Who win will be nominated Magister Militum (field marshal). I have chose the Dux Armeniae army, Sunday I will know how my forces fight on the battleground.

If you want to know more on this scenario you can go to the mini-website that I created for the event:

Now we are in a new wargame season, the 2012 autumn campaign, so I am very busy and a lot of events are scheduled in the next two months. So you have to wait for my reportage. Coming soon in my wargamer life, coming soon on this blog!


8 Settembre 1943

Today we remember a day of infamy for our Country, when our king and all our govern people fled from Rome towards the Allies in the south to save themselves, leaving Italy without a head during the war. They suddenly changed side in the war without thinking about the consequences, leaving the State and the Army without orders, causing the occupation of Germans and the civil war. They started the war without adequate preparation and later they claimed to accuse Mussolini for that as they weren’t part of that system too, rebuilding a virginity fighting together with our former enemies. Perpetual shame on them, parasites of society and thieves with blood-spattered hands!

Today I am in Rufina, near Florence, for a two days convention. I will speak about it in the next posts. Among other things we will try a WWII ruleset to play a game about angry Germans versus lost Italian regular Army.


This is not a souvenir

During a walk in the city centre I saw this thing in a souvenir shop around Piazza Navona. There is a new wave of this kind of shops, sometime they obliterate ancient and more rustic places, or real shops not created for hordes of tourist zombies. A lot of Chinese or South Asians are among vendors, and this is a new trend. Traditional souvenir vendors were Hebrew, because this was considered as an indecorous job, so it was reserved to pariah of society.

Back to the arena. Think about a game setted inside this arena. If you want a Colosseum here you have got a real one. Well, a real one at the actual form, because now it is so ruined, in ancient times it had another form. But who care, so it is more peculiar.

I didn’t ask the price. It could be outrageous, I suppose. It is a souvenir, isn’t it? For very rich people. But if you think about some prices for resin buildings for wargames, or worse to train modelling, we are rich people who spent a lot of money on silly things.

To stop this thought, I believe that I haven’t the space for this thing in my house. So I can’t afford it. I wonder on who will buy it.


Mad Daleks

Tonight the new Dr Who season 33 (!) will be aired. And to start with a bang we will have a bunch of mad (!) Daleks on rampage: “Asylum of the Daleks”. Well, “asylum” is something different from “invasion”, “masterplan”, “victory”, “revelation”, “return”, “resurrection”,… To celebrate the event I’m thinking to buy some Daleks for my collection. I have some Renegade Daleks and Imperial Daleks in 28mm scale, but now I’m looking for something bigger. Sad fact: this is the last season with the cute Amy Pond (Karen Gillan) but will be presented Clara Oswin (Jenna-Louise Coleman), a new cute companion. But Amy is the cutest companion ever.