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"WW1 Trench Raid Game in 54mm" Topic

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Nick Stern Supporting Member of TMP22 Jul 2018 4:47 p.m. PST

Inspired by this TMP post: TMP link I thought why not give it a try in my new favorite scale? All you need are a handful of figures and trench terrain. You could even use a trench diagram on paper. The rules are very simple, beer and pretzels, but they still offer some exciting moments of hand-to-hand combat and the ability for a figure to grab a tossed grenade and throw it back. We were able to play two games during our club meeting and each played very differently.









The miniatures are all plastic AIP aside from two metal German Stormtroops from Old Northwest Trading Company.
The trench sections are by Atheron Scenics, available on eBay

Gone Fishing23 Jul 2018 5:57 a.m. PST

That really is marvelous, Nick. Love the terrain, the paint jobs (the German helmets especially) and of course the scale – but then we've shared our mutual love of 54s before! Right then, off to check on those scenics!

Thank you for sharing!


Gone Fishing23 Jul 2018 6:29 a.m. PST

Well, back from e-bay and several slugs of something bracing to calm my shaking hands. How have I missed that company? As someone who hates to prep and paint scenery they could be a Godsend.

Does anyone know if pickelhaubes and the British field caps – ie early war kit – would work for any trench warfare? I prefer the early look for some reason. Both Irregular and AIP have attractive offerings, I see…

Nick, would it be too much trouble to send me a copy of those rules? Some serious pondering going on here…

Ceterman23 Jul 2018 7:14 a.m. PST

GREAT GAME, Nick! I REALLY like these very simple, yet elegant "rules"! Really just 2 or 3 pages. Your terrain is very cool also!
Gone Fishing, I had a very kind TMPer take pics of the rules & send them to me. So I could send them to you if ya like. BUT there is ONE typo in them. You have 3 different "SKILL NUMBERS" Initiative, Shooting & Fighting. The Higher the better. In the (general) rules they state you need to roll your number or lower, which makes perfect sense. In the paragraph for shooting though, it states you need to roll your NUMBER OR HIGHER. Which absolutely contradicts EVERYTHING! So when you play them, just make sure when you shoot, like everything else, you hit if you roll your (sometimes modified) Number or LOWER! Send me your email & I'll get them to you asap. May be a day or so. I'm at work & I have a lot of work to do when I get home today also!

Ceterman23 Jul 2018 7:17 a.m. PST

And YES! These would work perfectly for Early War figs as well. No difference at all that I can see… well except for no sub-machineguns.

Nick Stern Supporting Member of TMP23 Jul 2018 9:02 a.m. PST

Sorry, that should be ATHERTON Scenics. Here's a sample auction

Ceterman23 Jul 2018 9:36 a.m. PST

I copied & pasted what you wrote & found them anyway, Nick! Did you catch the typo in the rules too?

Vimy Ridge23 Jul 2018 9:51 a.m. PST


Nick Stern Supporting Member of TMP23 Jul 2018 1:02 p.m. PST

Caterman, we had to stop the game to discuss the shooting rules. I decided to just drop the automatic weapon modifier before we started the game, but I can see how it would work with the lower dice roll to hit. IIRC, after some discussion we talked ourselves into going with the high roll being better. I hate the inconsistency of having to roll high in some instance, but low in others. I am going to try out the game later this week using my favorite western shootout rules: Fistful of Lead for everything except the grenade rules, which I love. Some players thought that the activation by individual cards was more suited to a solo game and robbed them of their agency. In Fistful of Lead you are dealt as many cards as figures you run and then the cards are activated in a specific order, but you determine which figure gets to activate in which order so you can be a little more strategic. I'll keep the end of turn card and probably keep the joker for that extra move during the turn.

Ceterman23 Jul 2018 1:43 p.m. PST

Nick, If you look REAL close at the rules it says in the VERY beginning,(discussing all of the numbers, Initiative, Shooting & Fighting) it says "The Higher the Better". The shooting number(being a high Number)is what you need to roll or LOWER to Hit a target. Only when you get to that little paragraph about actual "Shooting" does the typo come in and it says "you need to roll your Hit number or HIGHER"! That would mean, IF you had a figure with a Shooting number of say, 5 (remember, the Higher the better) well then you ONLY hit on a 5 or 6! BAD. But if you realize that there is a typo & it should say, "you need to roll your Hit number or LOWER well then a "5" means you Hit on a 1-5. Now THAT makes sense. As for the "automatic weapon modifier" being a minus, we struggled with that also. But in the end, I, we think it "MAY" mean, you are spraying bullets around, not really aiming. AND you DO get many more chances to hit which kinda cancels out that -1. I "think". Without that -1 on the automatic weapons, they might be too overpowering. We all really liked the card system. No one thought it robbed anyone of anything. With the commander & Joker cards, I think that is just enough extra moves to spread around. Too MUCH control is way too unrealistic, IMHO. I thought, except for that ONE DAMN TYPO, which could not have come at a more ridiculous place, it was a very, very good little set of Trench rules. As did the other 4 guys. We are gonna try to play again in 2 weeks. This time though we are gonna use about 10 Raiders armed with the usual Trench Fighting weapons against about 20 Regulars. Ya know basic infantry, not being as ballsy as the guys sent on the raid! The 1st game we used figures that were published in the game, already made up. Raiders against raiders. So we'll see what happens…

Gone Fishing23 Jul 2018 1:45 p.m. PST

Peter, I'll take you up on the offer, if it's not too much trouble. Nick has been kind enough to send them already, but it never hurts to have a backup! And glad to hear the early war kit wouldn't be too anachronistic in the trenches…

We've actually been in contact before I'm the chap who sent you the Pony Wars rules: machaselton AT sbcglobal DOT net
Thank you!

Nick, I'm also a big fan of A Fistful of Lead. A great set of rules that can lead to some highly dramatic situations, though the solo possibilities with the WI set has its attractions also. If you can, please post pics and let us know how things go with the tweaked rules!

Nick Stern Supporting Member of TMP23 Jul 2018 2:37 p.m. PST

Caterman, we forgot to use the officer giving orders to a subordinate within sight rule. Actually, we started the game with five British on watch in the trench, including a sergeant, and five "asleep" in the bunker who took an action to activate once the alarm sounded. This seemed like a real disadvantage for the defenders in the beginning, but in both games, the British came back and grenaded the Germans out of the trench. Some other thoughts: I gave both sides the same number of grenades, but I spread the grenades out among the British, while the Germans had four designated Grenadiers. This gave the British a big advantage, even with only one or two grenades per soldier. Also, I gave each side one LMG and they were useless in the game due to the restriction of an LMG not being able to move and fire. I think next game I'll ditch the LMGs in favor more riflemen. The German Bergman SMG was highly effective, as it should be. Next time I'll give the Germans two if they're attacking. Have you watched the recent WW1 film Journey's End? In that film the British execute a trench raid to take a prisoner. They send out two officers with revolvers, a sergeant and nine other ranks. They lose one officer and half their men, but they get the prisoner. I think might try that scenario next time. I definitely haven't given up on the rules as written, I am just curious to see how they compare to FfoL.

Ceterman23 Jul 2018 4:00 p.m. PST

Daryl, Sent in 3 emails! Enjoy!

Ceterman23 Jul 2018 4:29 p.m. PST

Nick, I had forgotten about that film! I need to see it! I can tell you from so much reading the attackers should have more grenades & the Brits used designated "bombers" as where the Germans issued more grenades to all their troops, especially raiders. So that should help. And yes, LMG's were not really used in raids. Way too heavy! I think with the rule changes, ie playing them w/o the typo, that should help! Very cool stuff here!

Jozis Tin Man15 Sep 2018 8:54 a.m. PST

Wow, I have just seen this (I am behind the curve) and this looks GREAT!!! Thank you for sharing.

uglyfatbloke23 Oct 2018 4:39 a.m. PST

Brilliant! We love 54mm WW2, but sadly we think we will have to sell off our (Crossfire) collection as it looks like we will be moving to a smaller house.

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