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War of the Pig!

PostPosted: Sat Jan 27, 2018 8:36 pm
by Herkybird
Pig Wars, to you! - A venerable set of rules with a loyal following!

Phil (Norman D Landings) - brought it and some of his lovely figures down to the club, and we had a bash!

The write up is on my blog at this link:



Re: War of the Pig!

PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2018 10:52 am
by BaronVonWreckedoften
Nice write up - although that's not quite how Norman told it on another forum. But then he was (a) very drunk by that time, and (b) becoming concerned at the non-recapture of French monkeys who may, or may not, be related to others he has experimented on (and not always in a way that advances what most of us would think of as science).

Re: War of the Pig!

PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2018 10:18 pm
by Norman D. Landings
Oi! I resemble that remark!
I was actually still woozy from Friday when we played. I know, it does me no credit.

Anyhow, second game:

Before Herky hit the trail, we got him to redeploy the defenders.
So second time around, they were better positioned to mount a solid defence.
The use of face-down counters (which, remind me, I have to get back to you in 2/52 time!) meant that Lawrence & I didn’t know exactly who was where.
Default rules for the defenders: archers/slingers will withhold fire til medium range (8”) and foot will form shieldwall when approached - preferably against a fence if possible.
To compensate for the Viking’s reduced numbers from three to two warbands, I lowered the quality rating of the defending spear men from “2 stripe” to one.
(PW uses ‘stripes’ - as in a stripe painted on the back of the base - as shorthand for quality rating. ‘1 Stripe’ = peasant/militia/rookie. A single hit will kill these chumps.)
We changed the objective somewhat, too - instead of looking for loot, this time we were after slaves.
This would change our choice of deployment. Our tactics in the first raid were to keep the defenders busy to gain time for our men to search the buildings uninterrupted. This time, we needed to ‘herd’ the villagers, spreading out to cut off possible escape routes, and trying to cut them off from the defender’s positions. If they fled to defended positions, we’d have to fight to get them.
We also reconfigured our warbands - both selecting far fewer armoured men than before - chasers, not sluggers.

Everything went well to start with - I sent my huscarl and his armoured men to lead away the spear men who opposed my approach, while sneaking unarmoured men through the back door of the inn. Elsewhere, I sent a bunch of hooligans to pile-on what turned out to be a single cowherd.

Lawrence advanced in extended line across the whole village. Some of his hairy villains split off to grab up a group of playing children who made a break for the woods. One scamp almost made it, but a hand on the scruff of his neck yanked him back at the last moment.
That’s when the wheels came off - Lawrence’s men closed on the first hut, to find it defended - but defended only by unarmoured peasantry! (The hut’s owner took the opportunity to hide inside and bar the door - note well, this’ll crop up later!)
I’ll have this lot, thought Lawrence, and charged in with the intention to subdue rather than slay.
Turns out the peasants had other ideas, though - they had no compunction about striking to kill, and although Lawrence’s Vikings were better troops, their lack of armour left them vulnerable. After the initial clash, two peasants lay cudgelled - but two Vikings lay slain! “To heck with the blunt end” yelled Lawrence’s huscarl - “Pointy ends authorized!”
Belatedly, the fight started to turn in the raider’s favour.

At the other end of the village, my huscarl and his armoured bondi had won the fight against the Norman spearmen. The lone Norman survivor fled from the inn’s yard out to the front of the building - where he met a gaggle of panicked civilians running from the unengaged end of Lawrence’s line. The lone spearman stepped up and shepherded them into the inn.
Which, you may recall, was chock-a-block with my grinning Viking thralls!
We ruled that - at any sign of a struggle within - those still outside would become aware of the danger and flee elsewhere.
But with a very lucky string of rolls, I bagged each hapless chump first go as they ran inside.

Meanwhile, my group leader had caught up with the Norman spearman and charged him mano y mano.
This is a very bad habit of mine - I have repeatedly wasted my PW leader by getting him involved in pointless melees which dragged on round after round. Also, this Norman had ‘Hero In The Making’ written all over him.
For once, I needn’t have worried. My huscarl split him from pate to chops at the first blow!

Back at the far end of Lawrence’s line, his Vikings were making very heavy weather of breaking into the hut! Eventually, two enterprising raiders chopped through the thatch and dragged the cowering peasant into captivity.

One major building remained unsearched - but it was guarded by two defender markers. Both of us decided it could be too big a bite to swallow, and we started to pull our men out, driving our captives along.
Just as we did - the dice rolled a double and the vengeful Norman lord showed up!
His knights thundered into the village as the last of Lawrence’s thralls, delayed by their struggle with the 11th century’s Hide & Seek champion, disappeared into the forest.

Success all round after a comedy of errors - but Lawrence’s casualties would rob the raid of any glory on our return to Scandinavia!

Re: War of the Pig!

PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 9:37 am
by ochoin
The figures are indeed, lovely.

I don't know 'Pig Wars'. Are you conversant with Saga? How do they compare?


Re: War of the Pig!

PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:17 am
by Norman D. Landings
PW is a very generic game - the polar opposite of Saga, which is based around each faction having very distinct special rules.

PW has straightforward, bulletproof mechanics. Card driven combat - Highest card wins, bonuses ‘Max Out’ at +3. (So if you have a ‘2-stripe’ figure charging into combat, downhill, with weapon advantage.... don’t worry your pretty little head about it. Just stop counting at three.)
VPs are given for looting, and there are charts for how much can be carried, how to herd livestock, etc.
Forced are based on a 20-Man warband: 3-stripe leader (who gets VPs for single combat), 2-stripe huscarls/knights/whatever, 1-stripe rank-&-file. Mounted figures count double, no more than half your force in full armour.
None of the force selection is set in stone, and basically comes down to gentleman’s agreement.
It works for any period where chainmail is top of the armour tree. Plate would require bumping the Stacked bonus maximum to +4 and deciding what value card saves against missile fire - not undoable if you wanted to.
Larger battles are handled by using multiple 20-Man ‘regiments’, and assuming all troops in the unit are armed & armoured the same. (There’s an example scenario for Hastings using this system.)
I like them a lot.

Re: War of the Pig!

PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:16 pm
by ochoin
Thanks for that Norm.
At the risk of being tedious, we do a mega-game at a local Train & Hobby Show every year. This year's effort is the Mahdist Wars.
It's all pretty well under control except....our terrain-guy "might" be needed in the US at the time of the Show. There's ways around this but essentially, it's a logistical nightmare.

I'm trying to plan ahead. So, it occurred to me we could more directly involve the decidedly non-wargame audience, most of whom have never heard of miniature wargaming.
We do SAGA but PW's sounds as if it might be better to use if the alternate to the above is to set up 4 skirmish games & try to get the punters to play.
We have the figures. We have the terrain. Certainly not the spectacle we usually try to serve up but not without merit.

Certainly sounds like I should look into them further. And I see you can download the rules from the Wargames Vault for a small fee.


Re: War of the Pig!

PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 8:01 pm
by paintinglittlesods
Pig Wars is fun

It is on wargame vault for USD 12

Re: War of the Pig!

PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:50 pm
by Herkybird
Thanks for the write up on the second game I missed, I wondered how it had gone!