TL;DR : A wargame to play on an airline tray table…jump down to the pictures if you don’t need the background…
Last weekend was a good one for gaming. There was a meeting of the HAWKs on Friday night. I played in a WWI 1914 battle with Duncan Adam’s collection of 28mm WWI miniatures using the Square Bashing rules for a gridded game.
On Saturday I drove down to the Washington area to play some games with my sons. We had a couple of rounds of DBA in an ongoing tournament of most of our existing 1/72 scale armies, followed by a 19th century imagi-nations game using Norman’s Proxia armies and Neil Thomas’s rules from his book Wargaming Nineteenth Century Europe 1815-1878. He noted that this was our fifth game with these rules, so I am starting to have a grasp of what my forces should be trying to do. We played scenario 41, “The Dominant Hill” from C.S. Grant’s Scenarios for Wargames (a.k.a. The Green Book).
On Sunday, one of the other HAWKs members hosted a monthly Saga day at Critical Hit Games in Abingdon, Maryland, so I took my pair of freshly painted Normans to try them out along with the rest of my Norman warband. (It needs another batch of cavalry and enough archers to fill out a batch to really shine, I think … )
Four sets of rules in three days is almost a convention level of play, so I felt that the month had gotten off to a very good start.
However, that’s not really the topic of today’s post. In the usual convoluted way in which the Muses work, two weeks ago I was reading the Nordic Weasel Games Discord discussions, and conversation turned to Demon Ship, a hot new game from Black Site Studios. It doesn’t really look like anything that would be to my taste, but it was noted that one of its features is that it has a small enough footprint to be playable on an airline tray table. I like miniaturized things in general (hence this hobby), so I search the web to find out what the dimensions of a tray table might be. (About 15” by 10”, by the way…) The algorithms decided that I must really want a kid’s folding tray table play organizer. While I had’t realized that such a thing even existed, it did seem like it might be a good idea for keeping miniatures and dice contained, were one actually to wish to play a miniatures game in flight. There followed a rapid group brainstorming session, and one of the other posters suggested that I look at the 3x3 variants of Bob Cordery’s Portable Wargame. Bingo! That mapped neatly onto a set of 3” squares with a reserve zone at either end. I figured that I could use my existing 6mm DBA/Hordes of the Things troops based on 40mm frontages. I promptly ordered the organizer and the two Portable Wargaming Compendia, all of which arrived over the weekend while I was playing other games.
When I got back from the Saga game I started getting things organized, starting (naturally…) with the organizer:
I dug into my scenery supplies and came up with a piece of sage felt, already somewhat mottled by spray paint, in the approved HAWKs manner. I cut a piece to size, and marked off the grid: