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"DBMM tournament at Cold Wars" Topic

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02 Jan 2017 9:58 a.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

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lou cardinale Inactive Member02 Dec 2012 6:16 a.m. PST

I am trying to find out if there would be any interest in playing in a DBMM tournament at Cold Wars. Anyone interested, please respond here. We have a group of players in New Jersey, but I would need players from other states to also participate.

I am stunned by the lack of support or interest in these rules, as I believe they are clearly superior, as well as more exciting to play then both DBM or FoG.

LorenzoMele02 Dec 2012 7:06 a.m. PST

Hi Lou
if you need it, I can host a page with relevant information about the DBMM event.

lou cardinale Inactive Member02 Dec 2012 7:45 a.m. PST

Lorenzo, I have visited Tagmata quite often and am very impressed. your site was one of the main reasons I got back into playing DBMM and with the release of DBMM 2, Phil Barker has clearly listened to us gamers and has made some exceptional and significant changes to the rules, and all for the better. IMO.

If this venture does get off the ground, I will request your assistance with broadcasting the event.

Thanks again, Lou

goragrad02 Dec 2012 2:28 p.m. PST

Haven't made it to the club for a while (working out of state), but when DBMM came out it was tried and was not felt to be better.

Don't know if there has been any trial of V2, but they did have a run at DBAv3.0 and it got good reviews.

FOG seems to have been rather a bust as well.

lou cardinale Inactive Member02 Dec 2012 3:11 p.m. PST

To be honest, I don't know how different DBMM 2 is from the original version, but I do know from what I have read, the rules are a lot more clear and Barker seems to have addressed many of the issues that drove a lot of us away from DBM. I just happen to like what I have read a lot.
We will be playing this week, fighting Polybian Romans against Later Carthaginains, which is a straight up slugfest between two historical opponents.

Also, there is a lot of support on the DBMM Yahoo website and even much more on Tagmata, which is loaded with battle reports, army lists, tactics, etc.

I have decided that I will run a DBMM tournament at Cold Wars, next March at Lancaster, Pa and hopefully, word will get out and we will get a good turnout. Those that have been playing DBM and FoG should really give these rules a chance, as they appear to be quite good. IMHO.


Khusrau03 Dec 2012 12:41 a.m. PST

Good luck with that Lou, and in case of desperation, there is always DBMM2 at Cancon for the 'Worlds' titles in January…

If there is anything we can do to help, just drop a line to the organiser. Cheers

lou cardinale Inactive Member03 Dec 2012 4:12 a.m. PST

I appreciate the help and I wish I could take the trip to join you guys. I have already contacted the proper individuals to run the DBMM event at Cold Wars, so I am on my way to organising the tournament and looking forward to it. I'm hoping that word gets out and that we have a good showing of players.

TodCreasey Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2012 6:21 a.m. PST

Yes I would play as would likely 2-3 more people from our club.

I usually play the 15mm DBM doubles but now we play DBMM in preference to it so I would much rather play DBMM.

When are you thinking of running it? For those of us who run games we need to have them in Dec 15 so knowing what day to ask for would be a big help.

lou cardinale Inactive Member03 Dec 2012 6:42 a.m. PST

I will be running the event on the Saturday of Cold Wars. Everyone would play two games, starting around 10:00am and the second game starting around 3:00pm. Each game running 4 hours, with a one hour break in between games. For the first time, we will only play two games, so that players can play in other events in the evening.

What area of the US do you guys play?

aynsley683 Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2012 9:53 a.m. PST

Good luck with your MM event at Cold Wars but I know of no one that plays it here in northern VA. or Pittsburgh where alot of our players come down from. I think MM was tried when it came out and not to get into who thinks what is better, no one here liked it.
We still play just plain old DBM 3.2 , the format is flexible, play as many or as few games as you want, arrange your own opponants and times, best 4 scores count towards any wood plaque thingy if you are into those. You are encouraged to play other higher scoring players to keep it fair etc. it lets you go shopping, do something else or as one guy puts it play DBM 'till everyone goes to bed.
At the last few con's at Lancaster or H'con this year we equaled the FOG players for amount of bodies playing.

lou cardinale Inactive Member03 Dec 2012 10:04 a.m. PST

I completely understand what you're saying. However, I really gave DBMM 2 a good look and reaed and reread the rules and to me, they offer everything I have been looking for in a competitve format. Skirmishers no longer stop formed battle groups from marching and if they can, will move right into combat from the march.

However, the beauty is we all get to play what we want. I'm just hoping you guys give it a try, as I truely believe that many FoG and DBM players will eventually realise that DBMM offers a lot. IMHO.

TodCreasey Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2012 2:35 p.m. PST

Lou we are in Ottawa Canada. I'll let the lads know. How many points are you thinking? The 4 hour format is one of things a couple of our guys have burned out on.

lou cardinale Inactive Member03 Dec 2012 11:18 p.m. PST

We will be fighting with 400 point armies and I agree, 4 hour games can burn you out, so that is why there will only be two games played. We will finish by 7:00pm the latest.

lou cardinale Inactive Member04 Dec 2012 8:21 p.m. PST

Our group played the first game of DBMM 2 and aside from having to constantly confirm that we were applying the modifiers correctly, the game went well. The Polybian Romans defeated the Later Carthaginians.

The Legions are very tough and with a quick kill of our Spear and Warband units on a Roman turn, the end was hastened. I commanded the Carthaginian Cavalry division on the left and because of the rust in how I applied the PiP's, I was not able to break my opponent before our center collapsed.

A good game and I must say a lot cleaner then DBM plays. We will be fighting Sassanids against Palmyrans next.

Thomas Thomas Supporting Member of TMP05 Dec 2012 10:25 a.m. PST

As one of the DBMM2 playtesters (I played a public demo game against Phil Barker at Historicon), I glad to see people are now recognizing its a big improvement over DBMM1.

I was disappointed that I could not convince Phil to make even more improvements in DBMM2.0 (amazingly many playtesters keep pushing for still more complexity), but he did listen to many of our ideas though we were certainly in the minority.

Not sure I can make Cold Wars but would love to play in a DBMM tournament at Historicon (which my family makes every year). I was an avid DBM player until 3.0 appeared.

We are currently working on DBA3.0 which has taken some of DBMM's best features (and left out lots that are not needed).

Glad to see interest in DBMM is picking up (FOG has disappeared in our area leaving losts of figures sitting on shelves).


George R Inactive Member06 Dec 2012 5:52 a.m. PST

there are 2 of us from Mtl who play DBMM, planning to go to CW this year.
TomT and the 2 of us played some games in 2009 at CW, but people were still enamored with Fog then so our planned tournament didn't get very far…
We've played since the first development version went up on Phil's site.

lou cardinale Inactive Member06 Dec 2012 8:40 a.m. PST

George, it is offical, there will be a DBMM tournament at Cold Wars. I will run it, but I'll play if we have an odd number of players as well. We will just play two games, each of four hours, with a 30 minute break in between games.
This will not be the intensive tournament, but more a get to know the rules and meet other players kind of event. There will be two or three of us from New Jersey and we are
looking forward to meeting you guys.

lou cardinale Inactive Member11 Dec 2012 5:48 a.m. PST


Tomorrow night we will be playing DBMM 2, 15mm Polybian Romans vs. Seleucids, using 400 point armies, on a 6' x 4' table, with two players per side. We are all FoG players, but had played DBM prior to that. This will be our second DBMM 2 game and am really looking forward to playing.

I will give an after action report.

Personal logo Bobgnar Supporting Member of TMP12 Dec 2012 6:39 p.m. PST

Why is it only now that there are plans for DBMM at a NASAMW convention? The rules have been around for some time.

lou cardinale Inactive Member12 Dec 2012 9:18 p.m. PST

Truthfully< i have been waiting for someone else to run the event. No had come forward, so I decided to do it myself. What I don't understand is there hasn't been a ground swell od support for DBMM, yet, the support for DBM has continued.

George R Inactive Member15 Dec 2012 8:36 a.m. PST

Tom Thomas, myself, and Stephane Barry played at Cold wars 2009. Others dropped out at the last minute so our "tournament" was on the small side;-(

lou cardinale Inactive Member20 Dec 2012 2:09 p.m. PST

Just to remind everyone interested, the details of the DBMM tournament for Cold Wars in now available in the tournaments section of the HMGS Cold Wars PEL.

If anyone has any questions, please feel free to email me at

Thanks, Lou

lou cardinale Inactive Member29 Dec 2012 8:44 p.m. PST


Last night, My friend, Mike and I played a 240 point game of DBMM 2, with mike using his Hunnic Army against my Sassanid Persian Army. Since this is considered a mini-game, We played on a 4' x 3' table, with the terrain pieces being smaller and you get to choose fewer of them as well.

The Huns were the attackers and since they were going to be an all mounted army and mostly of light cavalry,Lh(S), I decided as the defender, to take a lot of terrain and try to shorten the width of the table even further. I chose two Marshes, which luckily were placed on my left and a gentle hill and enclosed field, were placed on my base edge on the right, so I really got the terrain.

With that said, I am still struggling with composing my commands with the right mix of troop types, as when I had to set up, my commands were not the right mix for the terrain deployed on the table.

I also continue to deploy poorly and always string out my army to cover as much space, which doesn't give me a reserve or second rank of units/stands, which is what happened last night. I deployed first, which I did across the battlefield, between the terrain features. Mike deployed his Huns next and very smartly, deployed them all against one of my flank divisions.

My army was divided into three divisions, with the two wing divisions composed of 5 x Cv(S), 4 x Lh(F) and 2 x PsO). The center division had 3 x El(O), 1 x Ax(S),
7 x Hd(O) and 4 x Ps(O) all three general were Cv(S). my baggage camp was deployed behind my center.

Mike's army was deployed in two divisions, One division had 17 x Lh(S) and the other 15 x Lh(S), as well as 3 x Cv(O). Both his generals were Cv(O) and his baggage was deployed behind his left most division, where he was going to attack.

We made a mistake, as The Huns moved first, but I should have gotten the first bound, as I set up first. Any way, Mike attacked against my right most division with two groups of Lh(S), each of 6 x stands against my 4 x Lh(F) and another group 5 x Lh(S) against my Cv(S). Right away, I realized that I had clearly made a mistake with my setup and had to little on that flank to oppose him. In my turn, I tried to move more stands to that flank, but as he had pinned all my stands from my right wing, it was very difficult to do much about his advantage.

His next turn, he hit my right with a lot of his Lh(S) and he destroyed two of my Lh(F), which are no match for his SUPERIOR light cavalry. he also attacked straight up against my heavy cavalry,(Cv(S) and he held his own, only losing one stand of Lh(S) and destroying one of my Cv(S). In DBMM, Superior Lh can attack heavy cavalry and win, which is one of the things I like best about DBMM, so an army like Huns and Mongols are very effective, if used properly.

My main attack was with my left flank division, as well as the elephants in the center, but with average PiP dice, coupled with the Huns staying back with hsi right most division, my progress was slow and it was apparent that the battle was going to be decided on my right/his left, which it was.

On the next Hunnic turn, mike continued to attack with his left most division, but was less successful, getting poor attack dice, as well as low PiP dice. This allowed me on my next turn, getting good PiP dice, to attack with both my Cv(S) and Lh(F) against his Lh(S), with me killing two of his Lh(S) and he killed one of my Cv(S) stands. During the next Hunnic turn, Mike continued his attacks with both sides losing several stands, creating a situation where both his large left division and my right division going DISHEARTENED.

For those of you not familiar with that term, in DBMM, it is represented when more then 25% of stands, in a division are lost and is reflected by all stands becoming SHAKEN. Shaken stands cost extra PiP's to move, as well as suffering a -1 in combat. Generals and Elite units in those divisions DO NOT become DISHEARTENED. My Cv(S) are Elite, so ignore the effects of Shaken, so most of my units were able to carry on.

During the next turn, both our wings were one stand away from becoming DEMORALIZED, which is reached when over 33% casualties are suffered in that division. Mike attacked with several Lh(S) and had a combat where he hit one of my units, both in front and on the flank, which is termed "flanked". If his factor is just one point above mine, I am destroyed. In the ensuing combat, I rolled a 4 and he rolled a 1, forcing his two stands to retreat. On my next turn, I flanked his stand and won the melee and destroyed his stand, thereby, demoralizing his division.

At that point, over 50% of the stands in his army had either been destroyed or were in a broken division, thereby, breaking the Hunnic Army. That was the game, which I must say, was the most enjoyable game I have played in a while.

Winning really didn't have much to do with that, as the game played out so well and these rules both reflect what I FEEL an ancients battle should look like, as well as play. IMHO.

I know we probably made several mistakes, but that will change as we play more games. The bottom line is that the DBMM rules give a good feel of how an army moves, struggles to move and fights. in most ancients rules, all units can just move about as they choose, but that is not the case in DBMM, which is what I like about the rules.

The Huns are a very dangerous opponent, as they are fast and being Lh(S), are able to attack most opposing armies, so a l;ot of care needs to be taken when fighting against them. The Sassanid Persians are also good, but are required to take a lot of Heavy Cavalry, Cv(S),(20 stands)at 9 pts per, so their options for a lot of other stuff is limited. However, they can have up to 6 elephants, 8 x lt cav, and a mix of infantry, including a number of stands of Horde,Hd(O), which are cheap and can increase the size of your army. however, that can be very vulnerable to good infantry and cavalry, so must be deployed and moved very carefully.

That's it for now,


Personal logo Bobgnar Supporting Member of TMP13 Mar 2013 9:36 a.m. PST

How did the tournament go at cold wars? Was there good turnout.. Let us know what happened.

aynsley683 Supporting Member of TMP13 Mar 2013 10:04 a.m. PST

I was playing down at the DBM end of the tables where we had 17 players but I saw the MM crowd had 2 games in the am then only one in the afternoon.

Thomas Thomas Supporting Member of TMP13 Mar 2013 11:15 a.m. PST

Can we reprise at Historicon?

I'm definatly coming to H-con (normally can't make Cold Wars…)

I've been playing lots of DBA3.0 but would love to dust off old DBM armies and get back onto the field.

Locally FOG is dead so lots of figures sitting on selves.


aynsley683 Supporting Member of TMP13 Mar 2013 1:15 p.m. PST

When you say you want to reprise at H'con are you refering to dusting off the DBM armies for M or MM?
As for DBM we had games going on at H'con, again more numbers than FOG but the new venue isn't overly popular, noise levels and it is just that little too far for our usualy Ohio and Canada lot (where most of our players come from), being the first year may of put some off also maybes not south enough to entice the southerners to come up(?), then the less said about the last 2 miles of 95 getting there the better.

lou cardinale Inactive Member17 Mar 2013 7:37 a.m. PST

We had four players playing DBMM at Cold Wars. We did seem to recruit two others and there should be players from Canada at the next tournament.

Quite frankly, I am perplexed, as DBMM is clearly a more complete and enjoyable game then DBM, yet the DBM players are resolute about playing the DBM rules.

Having played DBM for over ten years, I have a good understanding of those rules, so when I tried DBMM2, I was stunned at how much Phil Barker enhanced the flow of the game. However, some players will complain that the sequence is tedious. I felt the same way, until I finally understood the rules, now the rules seem to play much better and easier.

Our group in New Jersey is now over a dozen DBMM players, playing both in 15mm and 28mm. With that said, most of our players don't like to play in tournaments, so we will not get the convention turnout that we get at our hobby shop.

I had a great time at Cold Wars and it was good playing in a convention tournament again. Hopefully, the next convention we will have a bigger event.

Lou Cardinale

IanB3406 Inactive Member17 Mar 2013 11:30 a.m. PST

DBM 3.2 is a pretty good game without the complications of dbmm which in my opinion don't add anything to the game. I tried dbmm and I think played the first ever dbmm at historicon….which was a pick up game. I was not Impressed with version 1 of the game.

. I play fog as I have opponents. There is NO dbm or dbmm in Dallas…so that's that---You seem to have a driving force in NJ for dbmm, but if someone was driving dbm 3.2 would the club be playing it instead?

aynsley683 Supporting Member of TMP17 Mar 2013 1:51 p.m. PST

Lou Cardinale,
Like yourself I am also quite frankly perplexed
as to why someone likes MM V2, I don't like the added chrome and keeping track of who's bound it is for what stuff etc. :-) .
Actually Lou I never really try and get into who likes what, why or even try and say which is better for whatever reason, it all comes down to we all like playing with our toy soliders and who is playing what locally for opponants.
Like yourself we got some more players to come back to DBM as well as well as 2 completely new players to wargaming. Most of us don't like the tournement play either hence we keep it simple. Play as many or few games as you want best 4 scored person gets a little plaque but I can honestly say we just play for fun and if we happen to win even better.
As I have offen said we now play armies that we want to rather than what will do well at an open tournement hence I have used Roman-British, Post-Mongol Samurai amd even Makkan, all of which do horribly in open comps normally but they were fun to play 'cause I have always wanted to.
Good luck with MM at your little club Lou but we tried it here and no one wants to play it again hence we have FOG and DBM at our club in DC. .

Mechanical Inactive Member18 Mar 2013 4:04 a.m. PST

Lou – sorry I missed it. Cold Wars always comes at the wrong point in the budget season.

lou cardinale Inactive Member18 Mar 2013 5:26 a.m. PST

Ansley, you are correct and I apoligize for my comments, as it was not meant as a lecture. Remember, this is all our own opinions and it's enjoyable that we can use this forum to communicate and share knowledge, as well as ideas.

When I first tried DBMM 1st ed, I felt the same way as you did. I'm not sure why I picked up DBMM2, as I had no inclination as to how the rules were, compared to 1st ed.

There were several corrections, as well as clarifications, but the more I read, the more I liked what Phil Barker is allowing us to represent, right from deciding the attackers, through the placement of terrain, then on to the game play.

I will agree that these rules are, in a way, a modified DBM, but with much more detail. Some refer to this as chrome. I beg to differ.

That's the beauty of gaming.


aynsley683 Supporting Member of TMP18 Mar 2013 9:14 a.m. PST

I actually like some ideas from both MM and FOG, I like the terrain placement in FOG and the idea of the can't recoil bit in MM as well as a few others in both but not enough for me to like either game better than DBM at the moment.
Are you going to try again for Historicon or just keep it to Cold Wars and Fall Inn? I am not sure about the Historicon venue really, as it is very close for me but it is just that one extra hour too far for most of our players from Ohio and Canada etc. (besides the noise levels). So numbers for DBM will most likely be down there as opposed to Lancaster but we still had more than FOG did all H'con weekend last year.

Thomas Thomas Supporting Member of TMP18 Mar 2013 2:36 p.m. PST


No I meant DBMM. Until DBM3.0 appeared I had always assumed that I'd be playing DBM on my death bed – but than came 3.0, killed the game for me and the large body of players in my area. Messy with the grading (formally one of the best features of the system) goes down as one of the greatest mistakes in gaming.

As for DBMM, version 1.0 was not very good. Poorly playtested and developed. We spent a long time on 2.0 which is vastly improved. No I could not convince Phil to remove every excess of 1.0 but at least clarity improved so you could understand it even if you didn't like it.

Out of this an older and wiser Phil has emerged and produced a truly great version of DBA (3.0 this time a good omen).

Lou if you can convince your non-tournament types to appear and play in always more laid back 28mm, I might get my wife out of retirement for some non-compitive tournament. She was an avid DBM player until 3.0 showed up.

Hope to see you at Historicon.


lou cardinale Inactive Member18 Mar 2013 7:14 p.m. PST

Tom, sorry to say, I will not be attending Historicon. However, I will try to be at Fall In and hopefully, run a DBMM event.

One of the things I like a lot with DBMM, is that the battle can go very quickly, particularly, if you set up incorrectly and your opponent knows how to exploit.

We have had games end within 90 minutes and the game just feels right. I don't know how else to explain it.


Thomas Thomas Supporting Member of TMP26 Mar 2013 1:24 p.m. PST

Sorry can't make Fall In (can only travel when school is out).

Is anyone interested in a DBMM event at Historicon?

I'll be running lots of DBA 3.0, but could break away for a one day event.


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