Monday, September 25, 2017

Fallcon 2017

Following my annual tradition, I went to Fallcon in Calgary this past weekend.
This year, Fallcon was moved to a different venue, the SAIT campus, from the original Commonwealth Centre location. The new place caused some issues, mainly with parking, since the SAIT parking lot was less convenient and cost money compared to the original. It didn't seem to reduce attendance though.

Friday night, I ran an expanded version of my Imperial Skies game with 4 players.
I painted up some of Brigade Models' excellent small scale scenery as British industrial buildings on Mars. They were targets for attacking German aether ships.

Here, the German players entered the map in two groups, making straight for their targets.

The British player (we had one player show up at the start and another join in later) initially positioned his ships to take advantage of their broadsides, and they sat around waiting for their opponents.
As the Germans came closer, both British players sent their destroyers forward to harass their opponents and kept the bigger ships back.

This resulted in British destroyer casualties as the first blood of the game.

As the game went on, treachery! A band of Irish adventurers staged an attack on the British rear area with their ship, the Fenian Ram. However, the British revealed their own hidden forts protecting the factories. At this point though, we ran out of time, and the game was called. I probably need to reduce the size of the scenario, especially with 4 new players playing it.

The Forge, a Western Martial Arts group in Calgary staged sword-fighting demos at Fallcon, something I hadn't seen there before. It turned out one of the guys in the group was the host at the bed and breakfast where I stayed, and he trained with the same WMA instructor that I did when I was practicing swordsmanship. Small world! I'm glad that WMA/HEMA (Historical European Martial Arts) is becoming more widespread and better known.

I was quite sick Friday night and Saturday morning, and I missed some events. However, I did feel better later that day and went to the auction. At the auction, they presented awards for amateur game design, and members of the 501st Imperial Legion in Calgary showed up to provide some atmosphere!

On Sunday, I joined a game of Chain of Command run by Stu from Calgary. This is a Too Fat Lardies ruleset used for 15mm WWII games.

I really liked the interesting although very abstract initial reconnaissance mechanic, where the two sides placed markers to control and limit each other's deployment. Here our side (the Germans) managed to sneak into the town at the centre of the table.

From that point on, since the Germans had a deployment location in town with a lot of heavy cover, they were well protected against any British attack and were able to play aggressively.

Here, the Germans on the right attacked the British position near their side of the board. This ended up being the decisive part of the game. Despite heavy casualties, the Germans overran the British position, and the game was called. The game had interesting mechanics, although some of it felt a little clunky and unnecessary.

This year, I had a great time again, despite being sick for a part of it. We'll see if the SAIT location will be used again next year.


  1. So my biggest beef with the Commonwealth site was the lighting. It looks like this venue was much brighter which is good for evening / night games

  2. Yes, this was in the gym, and it was pretty brightly lit.

  3. Pretty much my only problem with SAIT is the parking. You're not right there, there was a bit of a walk (not that I couldn't use a walk. Or ten.).

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