Sunday, 25 September 2011

Tomorrow's War today!

Tomorrow's War Review Part one
I kindly received a copy of Tomorrow’s War from Joseph McCullough (Osprey Joe) at Osprey Publishing after i replied to his call for a review of this new set of rules that he put out on ‘The Miniatures Page’.

The main reason for my interest in these rules, aside from all the hype and ‘preview’ stuff that has been shown on ‘Drop Ship Horizon’ was that I wanted to get back into hard sci-fi and introduce my two boys in to the wider world of sci-fi gaming. Sure they have played Fling Lead and MDRG but to them sci-fi is 40K. All is not lost!
What I intend to do is bring you a review of Tomorrow’s War in bite size chunks as we learn the rules and play games, hopefully giving you a better, deeper review than normal. One of the main aspects I will be evaluating of these rule are how easy are they for the younger generation to pick up and understand? If my two boys get it then the whole team at Ambush Alley Games and Osprey have done their job above and beyond, in my humble opinion.

Below is the first of several reviews, read on and enjoy!
To look at Tomorrow’s War is a little bit strange, why you may ask? Well the size of the book is odd, it’s not A4 and not A5 but somewhere in-between, I am guessing is it a weird American size. Now I am not saying this is a bad thing, quite the contrary it is a good size, it wil not take up loads of room on the gaming table where most rule books end up during play. It is hard backed with pages that stay open on the page you want them to stay open on, again a plus. I hate having rule books which just don’t stay flat.

The main winner for me is the cover art, it is fantastic and gives a real sense near future combat, it reminds me of a consol game like HALO, Gears of War.
This art work is scattered through the whole book and all of it is great. My eldest had a look at the book and he was blown away by the entire thing. I couldn’t believe his enthusiasm for it, he loved the whole packaging and he said it looked like all the best X-Box games rolled into one. He even asked when we can play, which is unusual as he is at that ‘playing games with dad’ is slightly un-cool.

Luckily I do have quite a few 15mm force made by GZG, which I never really got to use. However I can now.

Talking of GZG, Jon Tuffley has written the introduction, which i think is a really nice touch as these rules so remind me of Star Grunt, yes the original Star Grunt rules, not the second edition which most people talk about.

So far, and that is all within a day and an evening, I have read the first 32 pages, which I guess is the ‘fluff’ of Tomorrow’s War. Optional to use but I have enjoyed reading it and it reminded me of the Tuffley Verse, Hammer Slammers, Dorsai books and Jefferson’s War all rolled into one.

I have skimmed over the basic rules and found them really well written with really excellent examples showing multiple ‘what if’s’ answers to a particular situation.

The main thing that strikes me about these rules is they look like they will be easy to use solo and as a team game. My boys love ‘team’ games just like playing on the same side on the X-Box on HALO. Typically ‘us’ against the horde!

The rules also look like they cove most things a sci-fi gamer needs including ‘gigantic vehicles’, air support assets, off board artillery and a campaign to get you started. However one of the most interesting aspects of these rules i do like the look of is the ‘combat stress’ and morale section. I feel these rules give a more realistic slant to the game. I am looking forward to investigating these rules as we get into the game.
The rules also cover aliens in the form of ‘Crusties’ which are very ‘district 9’ prawns! Very cool indeed.
I think that is a winner for me from the outset, my imagination is fired up with loads of ‘brush fire’ war type scenarios but there is still more to come in terms of reviews. The next instalment will cover the main rules and hopefully a small AAR showing the game mechanics in action. This will be a nice acid test to see if the rules are user friendly and can be understood by the younger generation.

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