by Rick Priestley
Published by Warlord Games Ltd. 2011
Hard Cover 192pp
Cdn$47.00 (30 pounds)
I've been waiting for these rules since I first caught wind of them last year. After much anxiety, they finally arrived in my mail box the day before Canada Post went on strike for the summer. I've been reading them this past week in between work and painting and had an old friend over for a first run through last night.
Like Black Powder, they are straightforward and intended for big armies and a convivial atmosphere. You can add more grit and detail as you grow in comfort with the basic rules, but the basic rules still give a fun game.
My friend and I don't get to see each other much so the game kept pausing for a lot of catching up, in addition to the expected leafing through the rules but we still played to a result in 4 hours.
The hand to hand combat is more detailed than in Black Powder (as explained by Rick Priestley here), and there are some differences in break tests and stamina levels. A nice change in Hail Caesar is if a unit takes a catastrophic number of hits (double it's stamina) then it is immediately destroyed without a break test.
|Lusitanians boil out of the woods!|
|Finally getting to grips!|
|The Crisis! Dice under casualties mark multiple hits.|
- very attractive production values
- flexible basing
- gives a fast game
- players are encouraged to adapt rules as they choose
- can handle big armies
- price (although I have it discounted in my store for $30 Cdn!)
- the flexibility leaves loopholes (but that's only a worry if you've got a rules lawyer in your midst)
- there might be issues with the binding after heavy use, but the rules are straightforward enough you shouldn't have to use the book after a few games
- some of the pictures aren't quite up to the standards set in Black Powder (but that's a minor quibble)
|The Bitterness of Defeat!|