Friday afternoon saw me at my FLGS The Hobbit Hole picking up some supplies. Whilst there I caved and got Jonathan (the store owner) to give me a demo of the newly released miniatures/war game Tanks: Panther vs Sherman.
Basically Tanks uses a cut down version of the Wings of Glory/X-Wing system. It uses just a single movement arrow that can be used in any direction, in stead of the multitude the others use.
In our demo game I was Brad Pitt in Fury and a n other tank, while Jonathan played Rommel in the Panther. Apparently according to the scenario we were recreating an infamous tank skirmish by a heroic German tank commander. Which apparently was more Nazi propaganda than reality.
Anyway I tried to distract the panther with one Sherman while trying to attack with the other. The panther took out one of my Sherman tanks. I liked that the destroyed tank stayed on the playing field turning into more cover to be used. The destroyed tank also gets a dying last attack. In this case it didn't do much.
Our tank battle came down to close quarter trading shots. I had inflicted some damage to the panther, and the dice liking me more than Jonathan (only just) allowed me to survive repeated shots. But eventually the panther got through and delivered a killing shot. With my dying last gasp shot I delivered two critical hits that also destroyed the panther. The game was a draw.
Tanks is £18 of the realm. Which gets you everything you need for two people to play. You can buy more tanks for the game at £7 each.
When you compare this to oh say X-Wing, yes it's cheaper. However for that extra in X-Wing I get some nice painted models, that I don't have to cut off sprews, assemble and then paint.
I'm not sure who this is aimed at. None war/miniature gamers? If so then the whole cutting, gluing and painting is a major no no in my opinion. It's definitely a big minus for me. If it's aimed at the war/miniature gamers then I can't help feel that this is too light for them.
I think that the demo playmat the shop has should come with the game. Or at least be available as an addon for around a tenner.
The rules are very simplified. Especially the movement side. They have got rid of the simultaneous revealing of movement with the dials. Which gives an advantage to the player driving the panther, because the Sherman's move first, attack second. Thus the panther can move taking into account the actions of the Sherman. So to snatch the draw I feel was good. I also feel this is a weakness of the over simplification.
There are already addition tanks you can buy, plus there will be organised play support, play mats, etc.
Tanks is enjoyable, quick to pick up, however for me the models and having to build them is a turn off.
At the weekly Friday evening gaming at The Angel Inn this week it was super awesome.
The evening started off with a game of Love Letter Batman which my friend James and I introduced the barmaid/landlords partner. James took an early three point lead, before I heroically came back to get the win. Our second game saw Jonathan join us. James and I took a couple of early points but the game ended up being a battle between Jonathan and the barmaid. Jonathan held on and threatened to win, but in the end the barmaid won.
The end of the game was perfectly timed with the arrival of a new club member, but friend of Jonathan's Jeff.
Our next game was a four player game of King of New York. James committed suicide trying to brave it out in Manhattan so that he could get home to his luxurious bachelor pad. He had an early start in the morning to try and get a limited edition Clash vinyl record from the local HMV.
In the end it came down to Jeff and me trading blows, with the advantage firmly in my court. An advantage I wasn't going to give away, giving me the win.
Our next game of the evening was the totally under the radar game, that deserves its place in the sun, Bohemian Villages. After a run through of the rules for Jeff, the three of us (that's Jonathan, myself and Jeff) started placing our meeples in the villages.
Jonathan stormed to a new personal best score and comfortable win of 66 points, while I claimed second with a score that just missed equally my own personal best by one point. One point that I could have had if I hadn't forgotten to take it near the start of the game. Jeff got a very respectable score of 36 points for his first time playing.
Our final game of the evening was a new favourite The Great Heartland Hauling Co. The usual blocking of locations took place as people moved onto a location you wanted to go to. In the end it all came down to who could do that final bit of business to push them to the forty points needed to signal the end of the game. Which just happened to be Jonathan this game. After final tallying of scores Jonathan took the first place honours, closely followed by Jeff, with me hanging out in last place. Between first and last place the point difference was five whole points.
We had a great evening gaming. Don't forget anyone can turn up to play. So if you are at a lose end why not come along?