Thursday, 17 September 2015

Battle Report - Dead Mans Hand

Hell Folks,

So we finally got around to some Old West gaming. Serge's brother Carlo was up for a visit and joined us, since I was the only one that had the rules I decided to just run things and take pictures. Serge had the Law and Carlo the Outlaws.

We went for the Fist Full of Models scene, at least I think that is what it was called. Anyway as usual it is composed of 3 short games called scenes. I will do my best with the report, but it's allot harder to keep 3 games straight in you head it turns out.

Scene 1: Ambush

Game one of our mini-campaign is ambush. There is a plan afoot and murder in the air in the town. One deputy walks around to check out a suspicious  stagecoach parked in the middle of the street with no horses, while 2 of his buddies are having dinner at the bar. Meanwhile a group of Outlaws are ready to Ambush him.

You can see the deputy by the stage coach, and some Outlaws behind the boxes and barrels. Both sides get 3 regular dudes and the objective is for the Outlaws to kill 2 lawmen without taking any losses or run out the clock. They need to make space for their plan.

Here we are at the end of the little game, turn 2 I think. Dead Mans Hand has you deal cards to all your models to determine who acts in what order. They also have some neat special abilities and you get some in your hand to play as well. The law men tried to fall back with the guy by the stage coach and bring up the guys from the bar. A few shots went of with no great effect on turn 1, and 2 of the Outlaws are up behind the stage coach. I think what happened is that the Outlaw with a shotgun moved out to put the hammer to the poor deputy, but the deputy decided to fire back and got lucky. At point blank this makes the shots simultaneous and the result was both getting shot! But this meant a loss for the Outlaws So Serge gets 2 extra cards in ha for game 2.

Scene 2: Heist

The second game is the Heist where the Outlaws reveal their dastardly plan to rub the uh Hardware Store, lots of money in their. I guess the coach was meant to be a get away but something got messed up.

So this one is a full sized game with 21 points per side. The Outlaws start off with 3  guys in the Hardware Store robbing the joint, 2 standing guard outside, and one guy who had a rifle on the roof of the bar keeping an eye on things. The Law men also have 6 guys all spread out, and one of them has to be int he bar having breakfast. They are surprised by the robbery, so only get to place 3 initiative cards in the first round. The Outlaws are trying to run off down the main street with the loot, and the game ends when either side losses 3 people.

In turn one the Outlaws mostly ran out of the store umping out the windows and running for it. But the Lawmen played a card when the last one went to move that had the teller fire a shot at him. This missed but it forced the outlaw to spend his turn gunning down the teller so he got left behind. The rest moved south, but an annoying Chinese labor man was a bit in the way. The Law moved over a deputy with a shot gun to intercept, and the chap having his breakfast head the rifle shot, so he climbed up through the hatch to get him and save his buddies. Finally the Sheriff ran down by the stage coach to see what was up. Mostly moving here so no real lead flying.

Now everything kind of went pear shaped from there. The guy with the rifle tried to climb down the building to get away, but that deptuy shot him dead. The Outlaw with a shot gun moved up and tried to put an end to the deputy in the way, but all he did was murder the Chinese guy in the way, but the plucky red shirted varmit got lucky and killed the deputy anyway. The Sheriff got in a shot out with the Gunslinger with 2 guns, and was not so lucky so he went down in a blaze of glory. In revenge the Marshall ran out and put some fire on the gunslinger doing a pin or to. But the Outlaw boss decided killing Lawmen was more then the counting cash, so he came up and put some fire on the Marshal. Now seeing a could time for a bit of a scuffle the last Varmint decided it was time for a fist fight and ran in a clocked the Marshal putting him out. They way hand to hand works is you both roll a d10 and add a few modifiers and the looser takes the difference in pins. They can take 3-5 pins before being out of action, so it can be pretty deadly, kind of a John Wayne punch I guess.

So with 3 lawmen now down, the Outlaws could make off with their ill gotten gains.

Scene 3: Showdown

With things spiraling out of control in town, the final scene is a big showdown between the Law and the Outlaws to settle things for good. in this game both sides deploy their gangs one model at a time kind of as they see fit, but all withing 10cm of someone, and only one can be on high ground.

The Outlaws set up in a line running from the gallows down into the Hardware store, while the Sheriff and his men surrounded them mostly on the gallows end. The Outlaw with a rifle set up on the gallows, but somehow the Sheriff was right behind him!

So it would seem that the Law ended up setting off their own ambush this time, I guess as the bad guys went back for some more loot. This game just goes until one side is eliminated or fails a big Nerve test, which you have to take after loosing half your guys, both sides had 6.

I gave a shot of the initial set up with all the initiative cards in play. It is a bit more clutter then I would like, but they are a great way of showing who goes when and keeping track of who already went.

So we are heading for a giant shoot out, right from the very start, and to make matters worse the Outlaws cheated to play the black joker. The Outlaw gang has an ability that lets them swap a card in their hand for an initiative card once once per game. Or maybe the joker was in game 2 I forget.

So yeah turn one tons of fire fights bullets everywhere. In the end a deputy and a townsmen where down, along with one outlaw. The Outlaw boss shifted from the hard ware store to under the gallows, but all he did was shoot up the post that deputy was behind. No other really significant action, but 2 Law down so they are a bit worried. Carlo had some hot dice so his bullets made for allot of dead people.

Round two things continued much the same, it went a bit better for the Law this time. The Sherrif moved up and took care of the rifle guy, meanwhile everyone else traded bullets.When the dust settled both sides had lost half of their men so had to make a big Nerve test. But with both bosses still around this was easily passed by both sides. But the Outlaw boss was left with 3 pins, so a bit of a precarious position.

With only a few models left things were not so deadly. But the Law played a card which prevented the Outlaw boss from using the recover action to remove his pins, and he had one of the first cards. This left him a bit stuck and not able to do to much. Then the Sheriff moved up to the edge of the gallows and gunned him down. He didn't get enough for an outright kill but got 1 pin and Nerve test or a second pin. He then played a card which made this an auto fail! So the Outlaw boss had 5 pins now which put him out of action and heading to the slammer. This left the Gunslinger in charge, but he decided the game was up and they took off, leaving the Law as the final victor.

Personally I really enjoyed these rules. They are quite simple and fast to pick up, but the cards give you a good bit of options to mess around with, plus the 2 special abilities for the gangs. I also am a fan of the 3 small scenes making up one game. This is a neat period so I am sure you will be seeing more of it!



  1. I thought that it was a great little game. Really easy to pick up. Mike did a great job on the models and the terrain was also well done. Thanks for the game.

  2. Great looking table...sorry I couldn't make it...can't wait to see the next installment.

  3. What a splendid and most impressive table! Gorgeous...