A New Species of Miniature Game
There’s a new species of miniature game in town, and it’s taking Board Game Barrister by storm!
I used to play Warhammer, and boy did I love it. My brother and I would spend entire days assembling our armies and trying to wipe one another off the board. Then we’d save up our allowance until we could afford that one unit that would finally trump the other guy’s army once and for all. Until he did the same two weeks later… Ahh memories.
Now, instead of an allowance, I have student loans and monthly rent. And instead of entire days to spare, I have a job and an apartment to take care of. Sadly, Warhammer feels less viable than it once did.
Thankfully for me, this new wave of easy-start, small-scale minis games that began a few years back has reinvigorated my love for the genre. Games like Star Wars: X-Wing, Batman Miniatures Game, TANKS, Guild Ball and numerous others. Not only are these games easy to learn, but rather than large armies, players build small squads around their own playstyle. Meaning there is considerably less buy-in required before a player can sit down and start, well… playing. Overall, they’re just less demanding.
Is this still the same genre as games like Warhammer? I think it is. In a large-scale minis game, you’re usually selecting units or squads that you want to bring to each particular match-up. I’m fighting a swarm of Tyranids? I’d better leave the armor piercing units at home and bring LOTS of explosives. These new games follow the same logic, except now I’m bringing a rugby player who’s tougher to knock down, because I know the Brewer’s Guild is particularly keen on tripping folks…
There is another aspect of minis gaming that I hadn’t realized I missed: Assembly and painting. This part isn’t for everyone; crouching over an inch-tall model for hours of super glue and meticulous painting doesn’t always sound particularly fun – not even to me. But when you open a box and find a colorless assortment of parts and limbs that you’re then invited to make your own. That’s when things get interesting. I get to decide which version of Joker my mini will resemble, what my Guild colors will be, what my squadron’s mark is. Without this central component of miniature gaming, I don’t think I’d be halfway as attached to my minis and how they fare on the field of battle.
I hope you’ll stop into our weekly events for these games and give them a try. Our “Champions” are always happy to show new players the ropes – especially in budding new communities like the ones these games are building.
Star Wars: X-Wing
At the forefront of this movement is Star Wars: X-Wing. Inviting players into a galaxy far, far away, this games simulates dogfights in space between the star fighters featured in the Star Wars movies and TV series.
Rather than a fleet, players assemble a small “squad” of fighters, selecting pilots like Luke Skywalker, Wedge Antilles, Darth Vader and Poe Dameron for each. From there, maneuvers are assigned to each ship, which they’ll carry out prior to rolling dice and trying to blow one another up.
Our current X-Wing groups meet Thursday nights at Bayshore, and Wednesday and Saturday at Greenfield.
I am Your Father’s Day Special Event: Try the game out for the first time, and get a special promotional in-game card for attending!
In the Batman Miniatures Game, each player controls a band of characters led by one of Gotham’s biggest names, including Joker, Batman, Commissioner Gordon, Two Face, Scarecrow, Green Arrow and more. Duke it out in combat, or focus on your objectives to further your agenda on the streets.
We have a Batman Miniatures event every other Tuesday at Bayshore. All experience levels are welcome; you can bring a crew of your own, or stop in to give the game a try!
Select from among nine guilds (Fishermen, Masons, Brewers, etc) and assemble a team of six players, including a mascot! Then start the brawl and attempt to win by scoring goals – or by roughing up your opponents until they give up. The game’s creators have put as much thought and creativity into the art, story and theme of the game as they have the rule set – and you really feel that added color when you play.
Our Guild Ball group currently meets on Tuesday night. Stop in and take a try at the pitch.
TANKS is fast and furious, do-or-die. In half an hour, you can pick your tanks and crew, upgrade them to your specifications, defeat your enemy (or die trying), and be ready for the rematch!
Tuesday TANKS event coming soon! Stay tuned!