GAMING NEWS: ASL Day! (19 February 2007)
With the flu I've suffered the past few weeks I haven't been able to keep up the blog as well as I'd like to. A few weeks ago, I was able to get together with my friend Charley at his buddy Roger's place and have an ASL Day. It was a good day, and ASL (Advanced Squad Leader) is one of those "cult classic" games that is always a blast to pull out.
Charley can be an intense guy, but don't be fooled.
He's really a "teddy bear" behind the "Ted Kazynski" stare.
Now, Roger can be quite the funny man.
His jokes made me chuckle several times during the day.
ASL is best known as being a rules-heavy game. It was developed over a number of years as a hex & chit game, meaning that the game is based around chits (small square cardboard playing pieces) moving around on a hexagonal map. It has had so many expansions that you practically need a PhD to really master the game. Despite all the rules, the game can be really fun to play with the right group of friends... and this game was fun with the right group of friends.
The briefing sheet for the scenario we played "The Sons of Galilee."
It lists all the of the units involved as well as a few rules and a historical precis.
The game started off with the Syrian invading forces entering from the Southern (bottom) and Eastern (bottom right) ends of the map.
Note that almost all of the forces are covered with question marks since all of the units were as of yet unidentified at this point in the game.
Charley knows that I have a keen interest in the Arab-Israeli conflict so he agreed to play a scenario from the Genesis '48 expansion, which replicates the 1948 Israeli War for Independence. We played a scenario near the beginning of the war in which a Syrian invading force of French and British-built armored cars supported by infantry attempts to overrun an Israeli Kibbutz (village settlement) in the North. Charley played the Israeli defenders and I (Maksim) played the Syrian invaders. Roger moderated and refereed the game as well as cracking jokes all day long.
At this point in the game, you can see that the Syrian armored cars have surrounded Israeli positions as well as the Kibbutz outskirts.
And this last game shot is near the end, Charley's Israelis are clustered in the center of the Kibbutz with Syrians surrounding them.
I (Maksim) won as the Syrian player although, to be very fair to poor Charley, the dice weren't treating him well. We still all had a good time. Roger acted as moderator and offered advice at several points in the game to me since I hadn't played ASL in a LONG time. We all went out to a nice lunch afterwards. Roger is also quite the hobby craftsman as well. I took several shots of some of his fine hobby work.
Roger had several work benches, but this is one in a typical state of disarray.
This is a very interesting diorama piece that Roger built of a 1/285 or 6mm scale science-fiction robot, a "Mad Cat" battlemech from the very popular Battletech background.
This is a beautifully done 54mm "Christmas Sophie" from Reaper Miniatures.
It's still in an early stage of painting.
Roger also build plastic model kits including this excellent AFV (Armored Fighting Vehicle), one of many he had displayed.
I want to thank Roger for hosting and Charley for playing ASL with me. Many thanks, guys!
Have a great Monday!
You can find all of the photos I took from the session here: