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"New Kickstarter Old West Minis Ruleset " Topic

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Bryce Whitacre Inactive Member28 Oct 2012 10:46 a.m. PST

We just launched a kickstarter for an old west miniatures ruleset called coffins and tombstones.

I figured I'd post here since there's a bunch of old west minis fans like myself. If you have any questions just ask! Thanks for taking a look.

solosam Inactive Member29 Oct 2012 4:24 a.m. PST

My biggest question is, how is this different from competing products? Why should I invest in your game, as opposed to something like Blackwater Gulch, which gives away the rulebook PDF for free and uses commonly available dice? You'll get more backers if you can explain how your product is superior.

-Solo Sam

richarDISNEY29 Oct 2012 8:49 a.m. PST

Well, it seems that a lot of folks like to have 'different' dice for their games (just look at most Fantasy Flight games).

As for the 'advantages', you might want to put that in an update on 'why' your game is better…

Personal logo mmitchell Sponsoring Member of TMP29 Oct 2012 9:44 a.m. PST

I definitely want to know more about it. Best of luck, guys!

Terrement Supporting Member of TMP29 Oct 2012 9:50 a.m. PST

I'm a big fan of THW Six Gun Sound Blaze of Glory, but also play and like Gutshot and TRWNN.

Tried LotOW by GW and have since traded it away.

Have other rule sets collecting dust, more or less, such as Cowboy Wars.

I'm a guy who has favorite rule sets but still will buy another / try another if it has something to offer. So, like the folks above have asked, what does your rule set offer that distinguishes it? And specifically for me (though applicable to others here as well) how well does it play solo?


@Solo Sam

Can't PM you, have some additional info that might be of interest on Doc. If interested shoot me an email at parusj at saic dot com


enginer230 Inactive Member29 Oct 2012 7:06 p.m. PST

Hey everyone, this is Kirby from Fearlight Games. I'd be happy to answer any questions that I can about Coffins and Tombstones!
First, I'll try to answer the differences question with a quick overview of the dice and the system.

The Spectrum System uses the icons on the dice for comparing successes rather than trying to hit a target number, and both players are rolling dice and interacting- rather than one active player just rolling dice against the other person. That was one of the thoughts on the comparison of successes instead of target numbers. Keep it simple and fun.

I won't say that other systems aren't good- we just wanted a rules light game that was fun to play and didn't require a lot of calculating numbers or preparation. Just grab a posse and play. About as complex as the system gets is when a character is in long range, they add a defense die, or if they hit the dirt as a reaction to an attack they can add a defense die.

Attacking has more to it in that the attacker can take different attitudes and roll different dice with more chances of success or criticals. Actually, the Kickstarter update I posted today talks about this. You can see some of the dice and the examples at:

One of my favorite things with the system is that the different settings can play together. What I mean is that Coffins and Tombstones is our western. If someone wanted to, they could play cowboys vs. one of the other factions from another setting. We are currently playtesting a victorian horror setting and writing for a fantasy setting. We've discussed and have ideas started for several others.

One more and I'll see what other questions that you might have about the game or system.

Another big difference is leveling up after a shootout. Your posse gains experience- if they survive the shootout and you can spend that to increase abilities, skills, buy equipment, and of course increase attributes. Most characters in the book have 2 or 3 points in any of their attributes. If you're playing in a long enough campaign, you can max an attribute out at 5. There are pages of special abilities to make a cowpoke more deadly, sneaky, better at Brawlin' or Shootin', and we cover adding Skills to a cowpoke in the event that you find a cowpoke is doing a lot of climbing or swimming. All of these add to the Bounty value of the posse, and we have handicap rules in case a very experienced posse squares off against a bunch of greenhorns…

That's a couple of differences with Coffins and Tombstones. What other questions do you have and can I help answer them? Or what things do you like or not like about the games you are currently playing?

Thank you for your interest in Coffins and Tombstones!

Terrement Supporting Member of TMP30 Oct 2012 7:03 a.m. PST

Thanks Kirby!

Just a few other quick questions off the top of my head, and I'm sure more will follow:

1. Just a shootout game? More involved? Campaign design? (your comments above makes it sound like just a shootout game).

2. Min/Max/Normal size for the posse? Number of posses it can comfortably handle in a game?

3. Size of board to play a typical 28mm game?

4. Time to resolve a typical 28mm game?

5. Mounted rules? (shooting from a horse / at a mounted character / in pursuit)

6. Building/structure rules? (hiding out, fights indoors, robbing banks)

7. Amount of bookkeeping? (for example, some games have you count ammo, others assume you reload as yo can but run out on a roll of X)

8. Vehicle rules? Stage coaches? Trains? (need 'em for many typical scenarios)

9. Level of detail? (some games differentiate among a Colt .45, a Scofield .45 and a Walker .44, while others just have light and heavy handguns lumping all of them together based on the concept that there is a difference between a .22 and a .45, but little practical difference between what a .22 and .32 would do and between what a .44 and a .45 will do). Not claiming either approach is better, just looking for the feel of the game.

10. By-standers?

11. Animals (horses in general, cattle, dogs, etc.)

I'll reload while you have a chance to chew on those, and best of luck!


Bryce Whitacre Inactive Member30 Oct 2012 9:31 a.m. PST

I see kirby chimed in. Let's see if I can help!

1. It's campaign based. Each shootout has special win considerations. If your cowpokes survive they earn XP and can level up and play again! There's a handicap system in place for when a posse of a value of say 800 meets a posse of say 675 bounty. The lessor faction gets some temporary "bounty" to make things fair.

2. Four to ten member posses as a general rule. You can play with less than 4, but the rules allow you to restart a posse if you have less than 4 cowpokes on your posse.

3. We like to use a 6 x 4 area with our 25mm minis. 4x4 works well too and we use that often when running a league.

4. 60-90 minutes is typical play. There are concessions rules when you are getting your butt handed to you so you don't have a total massacre of your faction in league play.

5. Yes. There are mounted rules.

6. Yes. There are building rules, although I would describe them as more beer and pretzel than hard core simulation rules. For instance you can stagger cowpokes through windows and doorways, and downstairs, and off rooftops.

7. You always have enough ammo. You do need to keep track of what's in your weapon to take an action to reload.

8. The first expansion we talked about was Trains! You'll be able to fight in and on trains. Stage Coach rules are in the core book.

9. Level of weapon detail is pistol, shotgun, knife, etc… We wanted a game that appeals to all gamers (and of every age) and specifically to blend in with our planned future settings. This game is a hollywood style of shootouts, not uber realistic simulation of detail.

10. Some of our scenarios have by-standers in them. What's really cool is you can hire townsfolk to work for your faction. They provide a in-game benefit without taking up a posse slot. For instance you can hire a saloon gal. She lets you remove a stunned condition from one cowpoke per shootout.

11. There's a scenario with cattle, and there's a faction with a dog.

There's also a nice article that went live today about the game:

Terrement Supporting Member of TMP30 Oct 2012 12:26 p.m. PST

Thanks for the quick response. Already have more rules than I need but that has never stopped me before. grin


Bryce Whitacre Inactive Member30 Oct 2012 2:59 p.m. PST

For me personally I like it because you can have whole leagues and campaigns where the guys on your posse get better over time. Still there's always that coffin die result that everyone is looking for to put down your star cowpoke.

Bryce Whitacre Inactive Member05 Dec 2012 11:09 a.m. PST

Hey Gang,

We probably aren't going to get to the 10K to outsource our dice but even if the game doesn't fund through kickstarter, everyone that backed it is getting a free PDF of the rules.

TurnStyle05 Dec 2012 4:45 p.m. PST

I normally love special dice…but that looks like a LOT of special dice. Are they easy to keep track of?

Only other thing I see is the need for a better artist. The artwork is quaint…but to generate interest, you'd do well to hire a legit artist.

Nothing grabs me (initially) like a great cover, etc. I wish you luck. I'm making an Old West rules set, but it's just for me and buds, so I admire that you're trying to make money doing it!

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