Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Tale of Four Gamers: The Bloggers are Back In Town!

As I mentioned at the end of my last post, I expect to run a Tale for some old friends in the new year... guys, here are the rules I have adapted from my last one, have a read and let me know what you think. I'd like to think it encourages all aspects of the hobby, and hopefully isn't too gruelling a schedule, whilst allowing a fair degree of flexibility.

The participating blogs are, I assume...

Ginge. Here. This blog.

It's currently looking like we'll have two well aligned teams from the mutterings about who is taking an interest in what., although games can be played against any body, not just a participant - two of the competitors live far away, would be unfair to demand they play only within the group. We'll assume our little warbands are on a journey, they may not meet till near the journeys end for the climatic final battle...

Anyway, the rules... (apologies for the messy layout it didn't copy across from my google doc so well...)

Phase 1 will be from the 1st to the 28th of January. From 29th Jan to 11th February will be "catch up phase 1" Each 4 week challenge phase will have a separate late period phase where people can still earn points if they finish overrunning projects within the second deadline. I used to have this be part of the next phase but people could end up getting snowed under with it eating into the next phases time, so they would abandon it to concentrate on the new stuff.

If you have finished on time, you can use this period to try your hand at something else or to do prep work for the next phase, or even make a start if you so wish. The plan is to be fairly flexible with the time - if it's completed by a deadline, it scores. Doesn't matter if you started a few days early while waiting for Bob to catch up with last months workload...

Phase 2 will be 12th Feb to 11th Mar, late period to 24th.
Phase 3 will be 25th March to 21st April, late period to 5th May
Phase 4 will be 6th May to 2nd June, late period to 16th June.

At which point the project ends and we count up score.

During each phase the following points will be available.

Painting 500 points of stuff - 5 points
Getting a game in with your stuff - 5 points
Writing a narrative about your stuff - 5 points
Publishing a Blogpost detailing any or all of the above - 1 point

If you complete any of the first three in the late period, it is worth 3 points. The blogpost points don’t have a late score I’m afraid, as it isn’t worth it. If you do not complete a part, it scores 0.

I would recommend that in the first phase people stick to combat patrol style lists (just because if you're planning to get a game in this may be your best way) and I would also suggest introducing at least one character of some sort in order to begin your narrative... although if your terminator lord won't be in a combat patrol, hey use a squad sergeant as the guy and in your narrative, advance time between one phase and the next to give your character a promotion and a new model. Easy!

There will be some other points available over the course of the challenge, although these can be scored at any time you see fit as long as it is before the end.

Paint a set of objective markers. 1pt each, up to six.

In your narrative, make reference to real world events. I have previously given the example of Bonfire Night and the fireworks in an early Tale of Four Gamers, I am happy to mention this as this one takes place nowhere near November, so you can't steal that one! There are five points available for doing this, and you can score it up to twice... I like a few references to real life, but we are writing fiction here, not the nine o'clock news...

In your narrative, make reference to battles you have fought how they turned out. Nothing can develop the character of an army like grudges and trophies! 5 points available for this, again available up to twice, as while it adds interest we aren't Dwarves, we don't want just a list of grudges...

Finally, I plan to have a big battle finale involving all participants, date TBD although late June Early July is looking a strong possibility. If you guys would fancy taking a trip to Warhammer World to make a special occasion of it I’m all up for that too, we have plenty time to plan ahead. Obviously it will be painted models only. If by the time we get this game in you have managed to complete everything you pledged to complete over the course of the challenge (doesn’t matter on time, late, technically “never” completed… if it’s done by game day, you earn a bonus 10 points.

The eagle eyed among you will have spotted that gives a maximum possible score of 100, and yes the points costing for some of the bonus points might have ever so slightly been influenced with that in mind.

As this means technically we could end up with a draw, I shall have the same finale rules as last time - secret objectives, with the winning player on the winning team being crowned the overall champion if such a thing matters by that point… quite frankly, i hope us all having fully painted armies will make this last bit rather academic.



  1. Your rules are in black on a black background.

    I've spotted your deliberate mistake and claim my prize !

  2. Fuck... I'll edit that when I get home :P

    The typeface was different, teach me a lesson for not pressing preview :P

  3. I like the rules, and they're simple too which is always nice!

    As it's been so long since I've done anything like this, feel free to ignore my next thought... is 6 weeks per phase a tad long? Would 5 weeks be better, with 4 weeks normal and then 1 week the catch up? Or in past experience is the 6 week phases optimal?

    Regarding list composition:

    Are we saying that throughout this Tale that our armies must be Battle Forged (which I like btw!)?

    Also, is the Phase 1 Combat Patrol rule mandatory? Or can we, say, just create a Patrol detachment containing whatever we wish, as long as it is Battle Forged and no more than 500pts. Btw I'm assuming here that when you said combat patrol that you meant the combat patrol restrictions seen in previous editions.

    Anywho, I love how these rules cover all aspects of the hobby so well.

    1. Regarding the time - in my experience, the one week to catch up has almost never been achieved. Two weeks gives a good chance to catch up, or to do prep work on your next batch, paint something not tale related for a change, or simply put down the paintbrush for a week and read a book. I personally would be happy to do four weeks with an overlapping late period, but that's me, I've always been a speed painter. I set it slower for those who have more time commitments than I do, such as spouses and children.

      I hadn't thought that they needed to be battleforged but if everyone likes that idea we can incorporate it. The combat patrol wasn't a hard rule (the rules don't exist anymore anyway) more a guideline that there's no point painting a knight phase one, as then no one will play you. So you may score an easy 5 painting points but you'll miss out on 5 gaming points because no one will play a 500 point game against a knight.

      But yes, I like your battleforged suggestion, we'll see what Rich and Ken think of it...

    2. You make some good points regarding phase length. I reckon by phase 3 there may be signs of fatigue, so a week off after finishing some models early could prove invaluable to being able to maintain momentum. Not to mention those working around juves/younglings/spawn/progeny.

      I thought of another idea around list building... what about being able to add models to units from previous phases? E.g. you only had enough points to get 7 marines down in phase 1, then in phase 2 you have enough points to bring it up to 10 marines.

      Or would that be risking adding too many rules/over complicating things?

    3. We've often worked by the current paint list rather than worrying about what has come before... so if I did ten ork boys month one then ten ork boyz month two there is nothing to stop me running that as one squad of 20... I suppose if I did a Nob in each squad I may have an issue but assuming I dodged that particular bullet...

      We'll go with squads per month. If you ever want to paint more than 500 points in a given month, you can do (benching those spare guys during 500 point level games) If You wish to paint a few extra guys to expand a squad, no problem. But if those guys aren't enough to count as some sort of squad on their own, then we don't need to include them.

  4. Ok, that sounds a lot simpler then. Paint what you want, as long as it is at least 500pts!

    I'm currently having tons of fun thinking of a first 500pt list for various Imperium armies. So many options :D

    1. Thinking about it, the reason I didn't include set guidelines about what units you needed to do in the challenge this is mostly drawn from, is because some people wanted to add to existing armies. If they'd already done all their tactical marines, it'd be harsh to demand they paint more just to satisfy my challenge. So I said paint what you want... BUT do bear in mind that gaming is part of the challenge. So the guy that painted a knight in the first phase, he easily scored his painting points. He missed out on the narrative and gaming points because a) no one would play combat patrol against a knight and b) his narrative arc of his knight being sat in a warehouse waiting to be called to battle would be kinda boring to read...

  5. Replies
    1. I thought your chant would be Rot, rot, rot...

      Personally I'm thinking Yes We Can may be something of a theme for my guys, as a young idealistic politician with his heart set on changing the system is drawn to the ways of Tzeentch...