Tuesday, 8 January 2008

BAR has arrived!

BAR came in the post today (incredibly swift international service from Bill Protz! Thanks!) and was waiting for me when I arrived home from work. Grand Duchess Judith was hovering about when I opened it, and made me a cup of tea to drink while I read through it and discussed various construction issues regarding the extension to our castle. A remarkable lady, to be just a few weeks away from the birth of our firstborn and yet still be so calm and accepting of my crazy hobby.

I have several dozen papers to mark so I didn't spend too long with BAR, but my initial impressions are very positive. The author's writing style is very inclusive, and soon had me persuaded that pretty much whatever I did with his rules was a good idea. I particularly liked the way he persuaded me to start small for now and aim to grow bigger later - on p.7 those pairings of small battalions painted with both regimental and colonel's colours struck me as a neat solution for flexibility. I had no idea that the idea of sitting down to design these uniforms was going to appeal to me so much!

Overall I get the impresion that BAR is very flexible (good news to me, who does not yet really know what he wants to achieve), and also is a very interesting set of rules. I find this very welcome, as there is nothing quite like being interested and motivated to really read and get into a rulebook. I also like the fact that the rules constantly remind me to alter anything about them according to my own personal preferences and/or available equipment. As a previously cardboard-only wargamer who predominantly played monolithic rules such as Advanced Squad Leader, I am experiencing a great feeling of liberation with BAR!

I have had some great advice from lots of you out there too, which I thank you for. I think that at some point I shall probably buy and paint some Spencer Smith miniatures, but I'll hold fire for now and spend a while thinking about my beloved nations and their histories, then designing their uniforms and unit regalia, before I finally take the plunge and put the brush to the metal.


Stokes Schwartz said...

These planning/development stages are indeed one of the hidden joys of the hobby. Enjoy!

Best Regards,


Snickering Corpses said...

Congratulations on receiving your copy of BAR, and also on the pending addition to your family. My best wishes and prayers for a healthy birth for mom and child.

I've only played one game of BAR myself, but found it handled things really well. I used it with 7-10 man battalions, and found it handled everything quite nicely. My only caveat was that it doesn't take long to reach that 50% stage where morale tests begin if you're only using 7 figures. ;) However, I had one battalion manage to pass two or three successive turns of morale check despite having taken over 50% casualties.

Bluebear Jeff said...

If I might offer a suggestion, you might want to read the following post:


I think that it has some pretty good ideas in it for planning an army . . . and I say that even though I wrote it.

Have fun.

-- Jeff

tradgardmastare said...

Do you teach - if so what?
Glad you liked the rules- you can have a fun game with a small number of figs - and solo too! Enjoy the process of uniform /unit/character design . Its one of the most fun parts of the hobby. Enjoy!