Sunday, July 28, 2019

SPQR - Rule review and first thoughts

A little behind on postings, last weekend saw the first run through of the newly released offering from Warlord SPQR, it's Ancients warband sized game. 
Having just sold my copy of Warhammer Ancient Battles it did very much remind me of these rules, with a traditional approach of IGUG rather than Warlords Bolt Action random dice picks.


The rule book is in the style of many of the Warlord offerings with plenty of eye candy and a bunch of scenarios for each faction.
The rules seem simple enough but you will need a bucket of d6 for example in the Warband attack on the Roman legion the German's rolled over 50 dice.... Good job the defenders had over 40 defence dice to counter the assault.


You don't get many Romans for the points on offer we played with 870 points aside which give the  Romans two heroes, a unit of Legionaries, an archer unit and six Numidian light horse. The Germans also had two heroes, three units of warriors, one of slingers and another of archers. 


We played the scenario "Fall of Heroes" which saw the Romans surrounded with the Germans hordes looking to kill the Roman leader.


I chanced my arm and threw my legion at the one side of barbarian hordes hoping to break them before they could bring all their forces to bear.


I tend not to be a fan of rule sets that churns through so many figures in a single round. I prefer rules that give my painted heroes more table time. If it takes over 15 hours to paint a unit of warriors I would rather see them on the table back in the carry case in less than 10 minutes.
Could it be that rules of this nature are a simply a vehicle to drive figure sales?
Having thrown that grenade time to move on....


The Roman legion having swept aside the first warband, the archers were caught by the charging warband and were wiped out to a man.


A few rounds later the Roman hero is down to his last few men, but so to are the German attackers in the final round the leader of the Roman lost his final wound and the game was over.

A fun rule set easy to pick up with optional rules for Greeks, Persians, Macedonians, Caeserian and Imperial Romans and their numerous enemies, if you are a fan of GW offerings and this is your first step into historical gaming I can see people liking these rules, but I like to see my toys on the table that little bit longer.

11 comments:

  1. Interesting overview! Thank you!

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  2. It does seem a bit of a 'wham, bam, thankyou mam' game. Also an awful lot of die to roll for relatively few figures... I'll be sticking with SAGA or Lion Rampant variants for my Ancients gaming.

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    1. A little bit Steve, as a say the paint to figure to game ratio was not for me.
      Cheers
      Stu

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  3. Yeah I lost interest when you said fifty dice stu! I really dislike rule sets that use multitudes of dice.....I don't even really like saving throws....it's my opinion they are simply a mechanism employed by rule writers to give both players something to do....if you hit on 4 5 or 6 then save on 5 or 6 , you could just say the aggressor needs 5 or 6 for a hit in the first place!

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    1. Good point when seasoned players like the majority of our club run out of dice you know something is up.
      Cheers

      Stu

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  4. Interesting - that's the first write up of the rules that I have read. I did wonder if they were going to be a bit basic in an attempt to get kids into wargaming. Sounds a bit worse than that! I think I'll stick to 'Hail Caesar' (I thought there was enough dice chucking in those rules!).

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    1. I am all for bringing new players in especially if they cross over but the number of dice rolls did seem excessive.
      Cheers
      Stu

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  5. Very interesting and tempting! Thank you for the review.

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  6. Do you know of any other skirmish games of this period that you would suggest being better? Before I get sucked into the endless versions that will come soon thank you

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