Thursday, April 30

Guild Ball Demo Game


The club members at the Chelmsford Bunker have been watching Guild Ball develop from its infancy as Mat Hart (one of the designers) is a club member and the lead writer for the rulebook is Sherwin Matthews our club president.  I see Mat on my train journey some mornings so we've spent a few commutes chatting about gaming and how Guild Ball has been going.  So it was really nice at Salute last weekend to see the long queues of people at the Guild Ball stand buying the teams and rulebook.  Mat was a bit overwhelmed by this as it's been a dream of his to produce a game and now it's actually happened.  I bought a rulebook and a full Butchers team as Mat recommend them to me.

This weekend, there is a small wargames show in Norwich called Diceni and the Bunker guys will be running demo games of Guild Ball for Cymbeline Games (run by my buddy Tom).  Both Sherwin and another buddy called Darren will be running demos and it seems that Mat is going along to help as well.  Darren offered me a demo game to get me up to speed with the rules and also to help him remember the rules ready for Sunday.

It was a small starter set game of Butchers vs Fishermen - three players a side. For the demo game, players taken off the field don't come back and we played to a six point total instead of twelve.

I got the hang of the basics really quickly thanks to Darren's help - and even though I concentrated on doing what the Butchers did best (hurting people...) I could see how the tactics and interaction between the team mates can come into play. Angel managed a cunning tackle on Ox and broke away to score giving Darren a four point advantage. I then concentrated on hacking away and Boiler managed to take out Shark to get two points back. I sent Brisket to retrieve the ball and dashed away from Siren to head towards the Fishermen goal but Siren tackled her and stole it again! Oh no! It was at that point I'd had enough (as they say). Ox, Boiler and Brisket sharpened their cleavers and advanced on the remaining Fishermen players. A flurry of blows and some vivid sprays of blood later, both Angel and Siren were sliced and diced and the Butchers had won 6-4.

I really enjoyed the game.  The mechanics of it work really well and even on this simple scale it was tactical.  I am looking forward to getting my models painted and trying a full sized match.

If you want to have a look at Guild Ball for yourself, have a look at their website www.guildball.com - you can download the rulebook for free, download the counters and even paper dollies so you can play without buying miniatures.  I'm sure you would want to though as the miniatures are just fantastic in style, detail and quality.