I've got nothing to show you, toy wise, so I thought I'd sprout a bit of verbal diarrhoea at you instead. Sit still, while I fling this in your general direction!
I've been on the hunt, unconsciously and/or consciously, for the perfect rule system all of my gaming life I reckon. The wargames that I've come across in the past (that I've liked enough to want to play that is) have only ever catered to one game mechanic really well, while failing, or butchering the rest. And while I've not found the perfect system yet, I've been more than happy enough just playing with the closest to perfect system instead. I can't be the only one who thinks this way. Or am I? Maybe I am? Read on if you want to learn more about my possibly solo delusion.
My main problem with rule systems (to date) is that there are generally two types. Ones that have a whole a huge tome that you have to plough through to know how to play the game, lots of tables, stats and other game critical information spread throughout. But the tabletop only ever contains the "playing material" i.e. the minis, terrain etcetera. An example of this would be RT or WFB. The second type, on the other hand, is almost the complete opposite. A paper thin rulebook, with straight forward rules, and maybe a small reference sheet. But the tabletop is covered in a shit tonne of counters, as well as the minis! Just to keep track of everything i.e. Stargrunts II.
And while enjoy playing the above mentioned wargames, their less than ideal. Their just missing a few key elements that would making them the perfect game system for me i.e. no counters on the table & intuitive rules.
Pulp Alley is one rule system I tried a few years ago that promised to address some of the problems I mentioned. The weapons and combat mechanics had been simplified, in a good way, but the rest? Not so much;
I'm not a fan of their card system as it replaces much of the skill element I like in a game with too much randomness instead. Card systems are fine if they introduce "some" randomness to a game, but not when they play a critical role in deciding the outcome of the game. If my input is not really having any meaningful impact upon what's transpiring, then what's the point in playing? Might as well be playing Snake & Ladders.
The objective locations are a little meh :( It's nigh impossible to come up with unique objective locations every single game, so they just end up becoming same same.
The almost impossible chance of killing head honchos is pretty annoying too. And yes, before you say it, I know it's a game of pulp, but it just ends up feeling like your efforts are pretty useless sometimes. The big guys manage to elude death time after time, head shot after head shot.....bloody infuriating!
So, where am I now then? In my search for the ultimate system, my holy grail of gaming? Well, I've given up on finding it in print that's for sure. So I'm in the process of melding/shoehorning what I think are the best elements, in my limited experience, of what I've played into one system. I'm erring more with Stargrunts II to tell you the truth. It has an ace dice system that takes care of many different mechanics i.e. ranges, troop quality, injuries, cover etcetera.....it's quite snazzy really! But it's proving to be quite a difficult task to coming up with a way of separating the squad element of the game into that of an individual character system instead. More work required :(
Well, that's enough rambling from Mr Papafakis for now. I've got a lot of other gaming related projects that require my immediate attention. Till next time brothers :)