A quick update. …

Sorry it’s been a quiet month on Tales From The Mancave….the girls have been excitedly preparing for Christmas and I’ve been kept busy with shopping, wrapping, chopping, cooking and playing games that sadly aren’t the kind I’d usually post about. So I’m going to give a quick update to keep your all advised of what’s been going down.  Let’s keep this simple. ….

I managed to grab three Star Trek Attack Wing Reinforcement Blind Booster Bricks for the forthcoming Temporal Cold War OP Series. I’ll be trying to post about each vessel and stick some pictures up as soon as I can.

Sticking with a space theme I’ll move next onto Star Wars.  I managed to grab a viewing of The Force Awakens on opening day and was like a child in a sweetshop with Daddy’s credit card!  Lol. Gaming wise I managed to pick up the last remaining ship I required to complete my Star Wars X-Wing collection. …the Tantive 4. Now onto Wave 8.  Being a massive Imperial fan I also wanted to get my dirty hands on the impressive Gozanti class Imperial Assault Carrier to swell the ranks of my Imperial Fleet.  I grabbed one for a very good deal of £39.67 (including P&P) from boardgameprices.co.uk which I was very happy about!

Sticking with Star Wars Christmas was very kind to me and I managed to get a whole heap of Star Wars Imperial Assault goodies from my girls.  I received Dengar to add to my wretched hive of scum in IG-88 & Boba Fett. I’m aiming to put together the whole line up of Bounty Hunters from The Empire Strikes Back. …so I need 4-Lom, Zuckuss and Bossk.  Then I’ll have then go toe to toe with my other games worth of hunters….the Predators from Prodos’ AvP.  I also got a copy of the latest expansion for SW:IA Return to Hoth. Finally I was given a load of Villain and Ally packs to build my SW:IA forces; – a Royal Guard Champion,  Kayn Samos, Chewbacca, Han Solo, R2-D2 & C-3PO and Princess Leia. So I can now assemble the whole gang from the films.  Happy gamer!

I did post a while ago about me returning to the Judge Dredd fold at NAGA to have some games with Brent Jay and Co. Well I was watching some very good deals on EBay and add luck would have it I did manage to scoop up the whole lot for a very decent price of £37 (including P&P). I ended up winning auctions for gangs for Judge Cals Personal Retinue, Justice Dept. Mega City Judges and Specialist Judges. So they’ll go onto the gaming table for use at some point in January against Brent.

The Hairy Gamers (me and Tris) took a little road trip to Dragonmeet in London during December to collect our AvP Wave 2 pledges and boy was there a whole load to struggle through a busy convention with.  I now have 3x Alien Warriors, 2x Alien Queens, 2x Royal Guards, 2x Alien Crushers, 2x Predaliens, 2x Alien Eggs, 2x Berserker Predators, 2x Predator HellHounds, 2x USCM Powerloaders and 1x each set of Dice (USCM, Aliens & Predators). I also bought an extra two boxes of Alien Warriors from Asylum Wargames Online Shop for a great price of £10 each. You can grab some too by visiting them on http://asylumwargaming.tictail.com/ . These guys have great deals on all sorts of goodies residual if you’re interested in Macrocosm or AvP.

This takes me neatly onto Macrocosm. Despite the awesome Chris Nicholls being very busy with his adventure into fatherhood for the second time he managed to go above and beyond to send out my Macrocosm Malignancy pledge.  Once the chaos of Christmas has subdued I’ll try to take some pictures and post more about this! Thanks Chris.  If you too are interested in Macrocosm then you can find more details on the website at http://www.macrocosm.co.uk/

Whilst we were on our road trip I managed to teach Tris the rules for The Devils Run and we even managed to grab a couple of demo games on the stand the Word Forge Games team were using.  Both of us are mad keen for this game and with any luck I’ll be able to help Mark Rapson with some more play testing and reviewing of the game in the build up to shipping.  With so many ideas for this game, with me posting regular bat-reps and reviews and with Mad Max Fury Road available on Blu-Ray and DVD it was inevitable that others would be drawn into the TDR:R666 game. Recently Tris and I expanded the Hairy Gamers family by inviting Gareth Mosley and James Hall to join our ranks. Both have the R666 bug and are busy trash-bashing and scheming for when R666 drops.  James has been busy using any and all HotWheels and Matchbox cars he can get his busy hands on to bash together some cars to use.  I myself am waiting until my pledge drops to see what gaps I have in my collection before getting too busy with trash-bashing. My ideas are mainly for scenery and game tiles based on British Roads rather than the American ones in the game.

Guildball now. ….as some of my regular readers will recall I play in a local Guildhall league at Black Dragon Games in Hinckley. Sadlt this has not been going to we’ll for my Fishermen who have lost their opening two encounters against Craigs Mort-Union team (12-8) & Andy T’s murderous Butchers (12-4). This week I have a double header of games planned against David Mustin and Mark Southerd in store on Tuesday so watch this space for that.  I’ve gone in half’s on a Union Starter with David to get me a copy of Avarisse and Greede to add to my Union Starter of Blackheath, Decimate and Gutter. I also added a Harry “The Hat” Hallahan to my Union line-up this month as well as hopefully getting the miniatures I’m owed by Jay Finnegan in the form of Fangtooth and Hemlocke. At some point I’ll have to grab me a copy of Coin,  the Union Mascot, so I can play Union too. I’ll do a “Gaming on a Budget” post later to cover my Guildball activities.  Having seen a couple of demo’s at Dragonmeet and spoken to one of the brains behind Guildball, Rich, Hairy Gamer Tris had also picked up a great deal on a Masons team for Guildball so we’ll probably throw down at some point even if it’s just to teach him the rules.

Lastly im going to talk about Frostgrave. Not the game or any bat-reps or warband stuff but mostly terrain.  I managed to grab myself two of the old Games Workshop Mighty Fortress plastic kits from EBay as a starter for my planned scenery. I wanted to build the walls of Felstadt. I also picked up 84 Lemax Snow Covered Wintery Pine Trees, a Garden of Morr kit from GW and some rather large Amera plastic moulded kits for their F204 Large Hill Top Ruin (Fantasy Realms page) & Z236 Corner Ruined Building  (Future Zone page). You can take a closer look at thier range on the link below;-


Once I get the chance to do anything with any of the above I’ll post something.

Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year to you all!

Testing The Devils Run:Route 666

Once again, last night, Mark Rapson, of Word Forge Games, and I threw down and tested some more scenarios from WFG’s forthcoming Kickstarter The Devils Run:Route 666.

Last week we tested the first of the Brit Attack Muggy scenarios where a fleet/swarm/bunch of Brit Attack Muggys attacked a convoy of Hauls Angels vehicles to cripple and steal an objective from one of them.  This week saw us complete the Muggy scenarios with the follow-up “Blew The Bloody Doors Off!”.  This scenario saw the remaining Brit Attack Muggys (we lost poor departed Ronald RIP to a long dive off a bridge into a river….may he rest in peace) of Michael, Charlie, Keith and Bill attempt to escape with their hard captured booty through a tunnel and off the end of the 5th tile.  As long as Charlie made it off I would win.  The plan was simple….keep those Hauls Angels off Charlie whilst he made a run for it.

Charlie could not be the target of ranged attacks if he was within 1-2 squares of any other Muggy, Michael added +2 to all other Muggy Evade rolls if within 1-2 of another Muggy, Keith was more difficult to hit as he adds +2 to all BS tests against him and Bill allows all Muggys ahead of him to re-roll a single failed Ballistic Skill (BS) dice per turn.  Knowing what my boys could do I set out my stall.  Bill would bring up the rear using his twin linked minigun turret to fire behind and keep anyone approaching off the Muggy’s sixes whilst improving everyone elses attacks.  I didn’t expect to attack much as the majority of my Muggys can only fire directly ahead although they can be all fitted with the turret.  Charlie would be central with Keith and Michael sat either side stopping the Hauls Angels from swiping him.  Seems simple innit?

The game started and it seemed to be going to plan.  Again the Brit Attack Minis were every bit as good as I (a huge Mini fanboy) had hoped and they do not disappoint.  Charlie was untouchable as he kept another mini close at all times.  This meant that Marks Hauls Angels would target the other minis first.  Bill was the first to fall but the aim of this scenario was not for me to escape with all my cars…..just Charlie.  He was my priority so the other guys could be sacrificed if necessary.  Bill went down first.

Keith was targetted next but despite Mark doing everything he could to side swipe him off the road Keith rolled an amazing Armour roll of 2 or less on a d10 no less that 3 times in a row to reduce the damage from one of Marks cars to a single Chassis Point (CP)!!!  Keither even had the lowest Armour (A) of any of the Muggys and couldnt rely on Ronalds Armour (A) re-roll as he was brown bread guv!

I was using the intervening terrain to weave and evade the slower Hauls Angels vehicles.  I wasnt affected by rough ground nor did I pay a penalty for moving diagonally which meant I kept my speed up and simple blasted off down the board hiding behind rough ground to slow Marks relentless assault.

Keith evaded and escaped the clutches of Hauls Angels with superior speed and maneuverability eventually catching up with Charlie and acting as his wingman as they escaped through the tunnel to freedom!

Victory to Brit Attack again!

With plenty of time left we setup another new scenario involving Justice chasing down some of the Laws Haulage gang.  Justice are a primarily female led gang inspired by the teachings of St Michael and Justice.  Over time their methods have become more brutal and they really do have some nasty and neat tricks to tackle the enemy.  I had thier Leader, Cadence on a bike armed with a Harpoon called “The Gatherer” which not only removes Chassis Points (CP) but also Armour (A) when it hits thus making the defensive capabilities of the target even worse.  A very nasty weapon indeed and this would become important as she had a mission to track and catch the lead Laws Haulage vehicle.  No other member of Justice could attack it.  To help he in this she had a special rule meaning any Laws haulage vehicle had to take a target priority test before they could used a ranged attack against her.  If they failed they could not target her.

I also had two junior members of the Justice gang and an Executioner.  This badass Valkyrie nutcase wields a huge sword and can really put the hurt on if she gets close doing 4 Damage per hit!!!

Collectively all my Judges could completely remove a vehicle from the game if they took off more than 50% of the remaining Chassis Points (CP) in a single turn so high damage weapons start that ball rolling and supporting Judges can then remove 2 or 3 hits and completely take out the vehicle.  This is a great mechanic for the weaker bikers of Justice.

First round saw the Executioner strip 4 hits off a Laws haulage biker before a lower judge  finished them off.  Cadence tore some armour off her target and reduced his overall Chassis Points.  My remaining two bikes ganged up on Marks second bike and took it down reducing it to a smouldering wreck on the road.  Next turn the Executioner did her thing again lopping the head off the passenger on the Laws Haulage Trike armed with a Flamer.  This was good as I hugely fear that trike mounted flamer.  You get no defence against it.

With one vehicle completely removed and two smouldering wreck blocking the road Mark decided to make a run for it and race away hoping to lose Cadence.

A lucky recovery/repair roll (roll 3 d6 and if 2 are gained your downed vehicle is back and can move its Minimum Move (MM), if 3 are gained I.E. a 666, then the vehicle is back and can take actions normally) brought Marks trike back into the game.  He slammed on the brakes hoping to smash into the Executioner but she evaded leaving him to be left for dust behind.

Rather than give the trike a free shot at the Executioner I too slammed on my brakes and moved behind him to attempt an attack using that devastating sword.  This would leave me vulnerable to being left behind as the game progressed.*

*As vehicles move forwards the last tile is moved from the back and adds to the “rolling road” effect so essentially the road is always changing.  This means any vehicle left on the rearmost tile when it moves is lost permanently and left behind.

When Marks target car moved off the third tile both the Laws haulage trike and my Executioner were left behind and lost.  It wasn’t an issue as she had accounted for 3 casualties and couldn’t actually target Marks car….only Cadence could.  She was only a few squares back sitting in his blindspot and stopping him from slamming on his brakes and taking her out.  My remaining two bikers sat just behind as wingmen now that the Executioner was gone and Mark had no other vehicles remaining.

Slowly but surely each hit from Cadences Harpoon stripped more Chassis Points (CP) and Armour (A) from the Laws Haulage car until with one final killing (Critical no less!) blow she took him out.

Victory for my Justice as Cadence and the Executioner proved what psychopathic badass Valkyries on bikes they were and wrecked everything in sight.

We decided that perhaps the bikes were too fragile because had Mark successfully achieved a swipe or ram on my bikes they would almost certainly have been destroyed or in a very bad way.  We also determined that the Executioners sword whilst fun was ridiculous and simply did too much damage if it hit.  We tweaked some numbers and ran some math and Mark took away some new stats to test another day.  i think the Justice will appeal to anyone who likes “the Eldar” way of doing business.  Hit hard, hit fast but dont be built for attrition.  You know you’ve taken a hit off them but if you get into good positions and can target them you will kill them.  I await further Justice expansions to see what effects they have.  they work well as a team and there are some truly tasty buffs between them.  I think Mark is 100% right that the Executioner is unaffected by some of the rules that buff Judges otherwise she’d be a little OP.  As it was she needed a tweak or it was simply too powerful.

Onwards and upwards for Mark, Word Forge Games and my other project The Hairy Gamers as we all head to Dragonmeet in London at the weekend to either exhibit our games or loiter and make nuisances of ourselves.  Hairy Gamer Tris and I will be at the WFG stand at some point to take in some demo time.  Come say “Hi” to us and the WFG Guys.

The Devils Run:Route 666

Some of you may know that I occasionally get tempted by a Kickstarter here and there……..well I backer one earlier this year which Ive mentioned a few times, The Devils Run:Route 666 by Word Forge Games.  Its very Mad Max in its style and inspired by older games such as Car Wars and Carmageddon and Dark Future.  I’ve been itching to give it a go and luckily on Tuesday night I managed to get out to Leamington Games Club to meet with one of the brains behind Word Forge Games, Mark Rapson.

The idea was that we’d have a run through of WFG’s recent successful Kickstarter for The Devils Run:Route 666.

I’d had a quick flick through the rules and had a vague idea how the game should work. There’s no better way to learn a game than through playing and I hadn’t pushed any miniatures around in anger so I was keen to give it a go.

We setup using the miniatures in the core game with me playing Laws Haulage and Mark taking control of The Hauls Angels. The scenario was straight from the rules with or respective gangs racing to grab an objective/token.

Each gang had a car sized miniature, a bike and a trike/buggy with each having its own abilities and benefits. The Law Gang had a twin minigun buggy whilst the Angels had a flamer equipped trike.

Having won initiative I opted to setup first placing my fastest vehicle ahead to race off and grab the objective. My buggy sat out on the flank where the rougher terrain didn’t affect its movement. The car came up the rear to hamper Marks gang.

The mechanics are deceptively simple and within one round I had them down and was quite happy with how things worked. The game is refreshingly easy to learn and really makes me glad I backed at an early stage as my decision to do so was validated within moments of playing.

The game time isn’t too long and setup isn’t a laborious activity making this game a perfect tabletop game. The ease with which rules are learnt and shown means anyone can get into the game in an evening and still allow plenty of time for a couple of games.

Having narrowly lost my intro game Mark offered me the chance to help playtest a scenario involving the Brit Attack gang and their Mini’s.

My Brit Attack gang consisted of all five named Mini Drivers. Michael, Ronald, Bill, Charles and Keith and their fleet of Minis were to attack a convoy of Marks gangs vehicles and destroy a target vehicle.

Mark gave me a Mini to take away as a thank you and it is an amazing miniature. I’m looking forward you assembling him and slapping some paint on him at some point. It’s a little smaller than a Matchbox or Hotwheels scaled vehicle as my attached picture shows but not detrimentally so. It’s the actual wheelbase of the mini that is key in TDR:R666 rather than the size of the car. A Mini or “Muggy” should be roughly 35mm by 35mm.

My Minis were quick, nippy, evasive and worked well as a team. They are everything I hoped they would be and more and I’m so glad I backed the Brit Attack. I’m looking forward to future games testing out the other Brit Attack models such as Cab Croozers, Lord Hood and the Beefeaters. I also backed The Hunters and shall look forward to testing them out too.

For TDR:R666 backers you will not be disappointed in this. Mark and Co really have developped a great world to play in and have some great plans for future expansions. You may even recognise some of the White Van Drivers for Brit Attack when they get released!

The game is slick, has beautifully manufactured miniatures, a simple elegant ruleset with some flavorful and characterful models and characters in game. If you enjoyed Dark Future or Car Wars you will love this game. The scope for personalisation and modifications to you gang is almost endless and will provide you with years of gaming for very little outlay.


The Devils Run: Route 666 – on the road with Mark Rapson

That Mark Rapson fella, one of the brains behind the recently funded The Devils Run:Route 666 Kickstarter run by Word Forge Games, has kindly taken the Tales From The Mancave interview test.  We chewed the fat about the The Devils Run, Word Forge Games, where the ideas come from and how it feels to be in the final furlong of his Kickstarter.  Plus he rather kindly brought a little sneaky peek at an exclusive render for the Brit Attack Beefeaters which you will see later.  With no further ado I give you that interview in all its unedited glory.
Mark Rapson of Word Forge Games

Mark Rapson of Word Forge Games


<JM> Today I’m chatting with Mark Rapson, one of the masterminds behind Word Forge Games, part of the team that will shortly be bringing us the successfully completed Kickstarter for The Devils Run:Route 666.
Thanks for taking the time to answer some questions Mark.  I know you’re entering a very busy time for Word Forge Games and you want to get the Kickstarter delivered so I wont take too much of your time.  I really do appreciate you taking this time out.
<Mark> No problem Jason! It’s great to talk about the project.
<JM> So shall we begin with a nice easy one?  Would you like to introduce yourself and tell us all a little bit about you and your gaming background?  Where did it all start for you?
<Mark> Well gaming started for me when I was about 13 years old. My best friend’s mum asked my mum whether I liked toy soldiers as he had just been given a load of them and she thought we might like to play. Fortunately my mother said yes and the following weekend Stephen, my friend came round to my house with a boot full of papermache and chicken wire painted boards and lots of lead. This was not what I (or my mother) expected as we were all set for the plastic army men of WW2 grey Germans and green Brits. It all went from there..
<JM> Now Word Forge Games, who exactly are they?  Is there team of people working behind the scenes? How did it come about?  Was it something you had always wanted to pursue or did it fall into place in a very natural “right place, right time” kind of way?
<Mark> Word Forge Games is a group of very creative chaps that I pulled together for WFG’s first project Guardians of Eden (more on this later). Firstly there is our art director, Dominik Kasprzycki. I first met Dom when I was commissioning art for Warzone Resurrection for Prodos games. We work very well together and we generally align very well on a vision, it works really well. Next we have Rich Howkins, who I have now known for probably nearly 10 years. Rich and I work closely on the missions, we often bounce ideas around for hours and many of the unique ideas within DR are down to Rich. Paul Rist i brought in because he has a very complimentary experience to mine when it comes to gaming experience. He is an RPGer, and again for Guardians this is a likely route. Paul also helps us source a lot of the things we need. And finally there’s Matthew Edgeworth. Like Richard, I met him at our local gaming club, he at the time was completing his PhD at Warwick, which gave us something to talk about initially (as I had previously done the same). He was keen to help with Warzone Resurrection when I was developing the HOTSS and Imperial book, So I asked him to write. What I got back was sublime. So there’s the WZR ownership. We obviously have a number of other people helping us, such as Marc Langworthy of RedScar publishing, Paul Summerhayes, Tom Haswell, Kraig Koranda and Przemek Kozłowski, to name but a few, which have all contributed massively.
<JM> Was The Devils Run:Route 666 the first project WFG had tackled collectively or was it one of number of ideas bubbling around at the conception of WFG?
<Mark> See, I said see below! Guardians of Eden was our inception project, and is still in our plans. But when the idea of DR came along, it was so much bigger and had so much more potential, it eclipsed the GoE project. Also importantly, GoE is a big and novel concept, it doesn’t hook with anything else out there, whereas DR does. Hence DR became our first project. We have also licenced a couple of projects, the first of which is from the infamous Youtuber Andy Ransome (Andy 2D6). This will be our next KS. We have a number of other things in the pipeline too. Watch this space.
<JM> So you ran a Kickstarter to fund TDR:R666 launched in May this year and was successfully funded within 16 hours?  You must have been absolutely amazed and delighted with the reception the game received and the support of the backers from the get go?
<Mark> Yes we were. At the point of launch I just wanted to get the game out there, but it has taken a life of its own, and seems to really have captured the imagination of a number of people. I always wanted it to be a community project and it truely has been.
<JM> To finally achieve over £42000 worth of funding which is around 850% and around 500 backers did you ever imagine the game would be as popular as it appears to have been?
<Mark> To be honest no. I was hoping for £20 to 25k. But this is beyond all expectation, we are locking down the pledges now and a significant number of people have up-pledged, meaning we can expand on a number of our initial ideas.
<JM> As someone who has survived the horror of running a Kickstarter looking back did you find any of the pitfalls or mistakes others have made in the past?  What were the biggest dangers to TDR:R666 from a Kickstarter perspective?
<Mark> Well I am actually a veteran of 3 KS. I also handled the Kickstarters for Warzone Resurrection and AvP too. And as you can probably imagine I have learnt a lot from both. But for the first time, with DR, I was in the driving seat for the project, that is daunting. I have tried to learn from my mistakes in the earlier KS and as is often said, the wise man also learns from the mistakes and master-steps of others. I thank the Prodos team for all the post-KS the learning experience.
<JM> Now you’re almost in the final furlong is Kickstarter something you’d use again to run future projects for WFG?
<Mark> Yes we would. Cheekz will be a KS, and our future plans at the moment do not exclude KS involvement.
<JM>  As we both know Kickstarters can be massive successes but they can also be terrible failures.  As such I’m often asked by friends if they should invest in Kickstarter X or Kickstarter Y but my only experience of it as funding medium is at a customer level so my advice is always in the form of a friendly warning “Only invest what you can afford to lose and you can always pledge at the £1 level to get on board and increase it later”.  What advice would you, with you Project Initiator hat on, give to potential Kickstarter backers?
<Mark> I think the first thing to remember is that there are 2 types of KS. Firstly the big boys, the serial KS companies that may often make $M a time. There you are basically pre-ordering. The entire KS is preplanned, its gonna happen, the extras were preplanned etc. Then there is the KS where the community is being asked ‘Do you want this game to exist? And if so please help.’ DR would not be a thing if it wasn’t for KS. And a lot of these other games wouldn’t be either. As a gamer, if I want to see a game happen, I will pledge, but I will pledge for that reason, not because I want a crap-tonne of freebies. Pledging at a £1/$1 for these sort of games, doesn’t drive them to succeed. One also has to remember with these sort of games, that the individuals behind them are often new to the entire manufacturing process and or they may be let down. They often don’t benefit from the economy of scales. So they will often massively under-estimate the time to finished product. Add to that that some will overperform. Remember it difficult to predict the timescales for a small project that does X, but if it does X+50% or +1000%, then the pressure is on and the timelines can be well off.
But to conclude, my advice is if you want a game to happen pledge what you can to make it be so. Consider it a donation, but hope for the rewards you have been offered.
<JM> So for those less familiar with TDR:R666 and those who havent been following other posts I’ve made about it via my Blog “Tales From The Mancave” and on The Hairy Gamers Facebook page about it would you care to explain exactly what TDR:R666 actually is?
<Mark> Devil’s Run is a vehicular battle game involving Bikes, Trikes, Buggies and Cars. Set in a very near future post-apocalyptic America. The basic game is a pick up and play board game which is expanded significantly via an advanced rule set to a campaign based game with many more types of vehicles. People have said it reminds them of The Xwing miniature game crossed with Dark Future and Thunder Road with a big dollop of Necromunda/GorkaMorka.
<JM> 20mm eh?  After getting involved with this game I joined a number of groups on Facebook and found a plethora of games using all sorts of scales.  Did you ever consider going with a more popular scale in terms of the hobby or availability such as 28mm or even 1:32 (to use Scalextric cars and components)?  What was the driving rationale behind that decision?
<Mark> Economy of size was one reason. If we had moved to 28mm or above the models would have increased in cost (and hence price) significantly. (we also wouldn’t have been able to do Warrigs or big trukks). The second was that we really wanted to allow people to convert and use their toy cars. I’m a converter at heart and there is nothing better from my point of view than taking a model and converting it to something new. Its the nearest I am gonna get to being a sculptor.
<JM> So really whilst the game itself has beautiful components not actually having every miniature or any at all is not a limiting factor as you can easily use Matchbox or Hot Wheels toy cars and mod them?
<Mark> Thats it!
<JM> I’ve personally struggled to find reliable sources of 20mm scale weapons for my cars and even more so with people, passengers and gang members, especially outside of the US.  Thankfully, WFG are creating some add-on packs that contain a decent number of correctly scaled parts to add to your gangs vehicles.  Was it always you plan to go with the modding and model making side of things over a full and all encompassing range of miniatures?
<Mark> Yes. I think both is very important and hence we will support both forms of model creation for as long as we exist.
<JM> Maybe we think too alike but I recall divulging all my secrets to you about making a Brit Gang at UKGE 2015, then it got unlocked!  Yes I’m still looking for that Double Decker London Bus War-rig!  You’ve been really receptive towards fan-made fiction and models.  Some of the modded cars backers have been making have even made it into the game.  Thats a nice touch……was it always your intention to give the backers so much influence over content and look?
<Mark> Yes in one extent. We included a peldge level where people could get a model made (and art etc). But what we didn’t expect was that people would really get into it. A large chunk of these backers clubbed together to start their own faction (the Hunters) and then others really added a great back story which we in turn incorporated into the bigger picture. We then have a team of volunteer writers which with us have produced over a 100,000 words of prose. For a board game this is unheard of. But it just goes to show that when one hits a vein of creation it can affect a lot of people.
I remember our discussion well. As you were talking I remember ticking off in my head all of our ideas as you said then yourself. The only one we hadn’t thought of was the white van driver, and to be honest I wasn’t to keen on that idea at first. Then when Marc was writing up our ideas for the BritAttack he said…I’ve had an idea and added ‘The Chalkies’, based on the white van driver. Just goes to show you can’t keep a good idea down! When we release the fluff for the BritAttack you should really read that bit, there is a little in there for you!
<JM> I’m completely biased but I think the Brit Attack and the Hunters are the best minis in this game.  Of all the models currently rendered or produced which really stand out for you in terms of evoking the feeling you wanted to give in TDR:R666?  Whats your favourite so far?
<Mark> Great question..when it comes to envoking the core feel of the game it has to be the Haul’s Angel car and the Law Buggy. They represent the first two factions so well. As far as favourite model it does change almost as frequently as a render is completed, but I think Cadence and the Skinners Trukk. Both of these are so specific to DR. Ive not seen anything like them else where and both initiated their faction.
<JM> Which gang will be the gang you take to the road with when the time comes?  No fence-sitting now!  Back a dog in the fight!  Who’re your go-to guys?
<Mark> BritAttack, I really love their aesthetic and background.
<JM> Its the same for me!  I love the way they’re put together and the nods to the 60’s and the Mod’s and The Italian Job (in the Muggy’s).  Speaking of which you’ve brought me and the rest of the TDR:R666 community a lovely little exclusive.  We have the final render for the Brit Attack Beefeater revealed.  Where we only had card art previously we can now see the render for the model in all its glory.  Ready Mark?  Dum-da-da-dum-da-da-daaaaaaaaa! *insert fanfare*
Beefeater Render Reveal

Beefeater Render Reveal

<JM> The miniatures themselves really are stunning, who have WFG been using to produce them?  Drop some names for all those talented sculptors, renderers and casting houses that are bringing us this world.  Where else may we have seen the work of these guys and girls?  Why did you go with them over other options out there in the industry?
<Mark> We have 3 groups. Firstly the amazing Irek (who people will know as the man behind a lot of the Prodos miniatures), then the Clockwork Goblins guys, who are behind nearly everything good coming out of the UK gaming industry and finally a new team to the industry, which our Dom discovered.
<JM> We’ve all heard scare stories about or even been involved with Kickstarters that have suffered issues when it came to time to ship and distribute.  Was this in the back of your mind when building your Kickstarter?  Do you have contingency plans in place to ensure backers receive their goodies in a timely fashion?  Who do WFG use for all their shipping?
<Mark> When it comes to the actual shipping we have a logistics company in plan AND we will have offered a pick up for free option. But one of the key things we did was ensure that the postage was collected after the Kickstarter, which meant we couldn’t spend it up front, but also so it could reflect better the cost (as the KS couldn’t take a cut from it).
<JM> So once the Kickstarter is fully fulfilled are there any plans to keep expanding the range for TDR:R666?  What does the future of the game hold?
<Mark> Yes we have big plans for expansion with new factions, starting with the Jets. We are also in various stages with connected games, but I think its fair to say, if one really wants to immerse themself in a post-apocalyptic world then Devil’s Run will be the way to do it!
<JM> And retail?  Will you expect this game to be available via webstores and FLGS after the Kickstarter?  What kind of interest have WFG had from the wider industry about stocking and distributing this game?
,Mark> We have been focusing on our KS pledgers to date. But yes FLGS and our own website will all be pushed.
<JM> That covers the future of TDR:R666 but what next for WFG?  Do you have other irons in the fire?  What other ideas are you currently discussing at WFG HQ and what can we expect to see in the future?
<Mark> We teaser trailer-ed very recently ‘Cheekz’, a cheeky little game from Andy Ransome, where hamster battle to win the coveted ‘Roundest Cheeks’ trophy…its a lot of fun!
<JM> Thanks again Mark for all your time today.  In the final stages of a kickstarter you must be tearing your hair out chasing up people for their locked pledges.  I know I’ve had people messaging me asking what they should get…..its like I’m some kind of TDR:R666 Pledge Puppet Master or something.  I wont keep you much longer I promise…..do you have a final message for all the TDR:R666 backers out there?
<Mark> Well just thank you! And we hope the end result really exceeds everyone’s expectation…because that’s the aim!

Crowdfunding – why gamble with your money?

As some of you may know I have backed the odd Kickstarter project in the past and even an Indiegogo project.  These are crowdfunded projects which rely on backers to take an estimated gamble to make them happen.  But what exactly is crowdfunding and most importantly how does it work?

Kickstarter and Indiegogo Logos

Kickstarter and Indiegogo Logos

Crowdfunding is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising monetary contributions from a large number of people, typically via the internet.  Crowdfunding is a form of alternative finance, which has emerged outside of the traditional financial system.

The crowdfunding model is based on three types of actors: the project creator who proposes an idea and/or project to be funded; backers, individuals or groups who support the idea; and a moderating organization (the “platform”) that brings the parties together to launch the idea.  Moderating organizations include Kickstarter, FundAnything, ICrowdFund and Indiegogo.

In 2013, the crowdfunding industry raised over $5.1 billion worldwide.

Kickstarter is one of a number of crowdfunding platforms for gathering money from the public, which circumvents traditional avenues of investment.  Project creators choose a deadline and a minimum funding goal. If the goal is not met by the deadline, no funds are collected, a kind of assurance contract. Money pledged by donors is collected using Amazon Payments. The platform is open to backers from anywhere in the world and to creators from the US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, The Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Spain, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Belgium, Luxembourg and Switzerland.

There is no guarantee that people who post projects on Kickstarter will deliver on their projects, use the money to implement their projects, or that the completed projects will meet backers’ expectations. Kickstarter advises backers to use their own judgment on supporting a project. They also warn project leaders that they could be liable for legal damages from backers for failure to deliver on promises. Projects might also fail even after a successful fundraising campaign when creators underestimate the total costs required or technical difficulties to be overcome.

Indiegogo users/project creators can create a page for their funding campaign, set up an account with PayPal, make a list of “perks” for different levels of investment, then create a social media–based publicity effort. Users publicize the projects themselves—through Facebook, Twitter and similar platforms. The site levies a 4% fee for successful campaigns. For campaigns that fail to raise their target amount, users have the option of either refunding all money to their contributors at no charge or keeping all money raised minus a 9% fee. Unlike similar sites such as Kickstarter, Indiegogo disburses the funds immediately, when the contributions are collected through the user’s PayPal accounts. Indiegogo also offers direct credit card payment acceptance through their own portal. Those funds are disbursed up to two weeks after the conclusion of a campaign.

So why would anyone in their right mind risk their money to use a crowdfunding website to back a project?  Well there are perks to be had.   Backers usually buy into a project using a “pledge”.  A pledge can grant access to restricted or limited edition products and more usually reduced prices on the final product being backed.  As money is raised “stretch goals” are achieved and more options are made available and more freebies on each pledge awarded.  Occasionally early backers can get favourable treatment by getting access to things even later backers cannot receive.

My experience of Crowdfunding is mainly in the gaming and terrain spheres.  Some of the big games companies such as Corvus Belli (Infinity), Mophidius (Mutant Chronicles), Mantic Games (Warpath), Battlesystems (Sci-Fi, Dungeon and Post-APoc Cardboard Terrain) and PRODOS (Warzone Resurrection and AvP:The Hunt Begins) have all used Kickstarter to generate funds to get a project going.  Some of these could have run projects without Kickstarter and use the service as a glorified pre-order service.  I’ll be honest….I’ve had a mixed bag when it comes to the results of Kickstarters Ive backed.  Some have been unmitigated successes and others have been a little questionable or badly managed, leading to delays and negativity.

Recently I’ve backed two Kickstarters run by friends of friends with good reputable backgrounds based off thier times in other companies…..The Devils Run:Route 666 by Mark Rapson (ex-PRODOS Games Ltd) of Word Forge Games and Macrocosm:The Next Races by Chris Nicholls (ex-Tor Gaming) of Macrocosm.

The Devils Run:Route 666




The Devil’s Run: Route 666 is a fast-moving and hard-hitting vehicular combat board game (for 2-6 players) set in a post-apocalyptic America.  Each player runs a gang of cars, trikes, trucks and characters racing on post-apocalyptic Americas highways to beat each other to resources and objectives.  Its very much a boardgame/wargame version of Mad Max

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Macrocosm:The Next Races




Macrocosm is a 28mm Sci-Fi Skirmish game set in a future galaxy of excitement, rayguns, weird aliens and wonder.
Players take on the role of a group of adventurers and explorers, represented by a group of miniatures, where they play out scenarios and campaigns to determine the fate of the colonies and to further the glory of their chosen faction… and of course… to have fun!

11057996_592002130937842_3277183606329605281_o 11200888_567005240104198_8623304036347784640_n 11234911_556142771190445_4744575749679868397_n 11705191_567005256770863_1304851289890827576_n 12006602_592002127604509_1019495816729746330_o 12031481_592001777604544_3271796485604615148_o 12045592_592001937604528_5791250302159400284_o Malignancy £50 KS Pledge

I’m very happy that both projects have met their funding limits and are now fully funded so I can look forward to the goodies arriving through the door soon.  I need to select the extras my pledge credit bought in TDR:R666.  I’m due about £125 worth of goodies and think I’m going to buy into the Brit Attack Gang and maybe The Hunters.

I also really need to get my sh*t together and sort out my Macrocosm pledge and any extras I want to buy.  I backed the Malignancy and really really like the models offered in that range.  I think I will increase my pledge and buy more stuff.

In truth not a single project I’ve backed has failed to become funded and despite the negativity surrounding one of the projects I backed I’ve actually been treat very well by PRODOS and have had things delivered exactly as originally indicated,  Sure Im still waiting for Wave 2 but so are the vast majority of backers regardless of location or Backer number.  Im happy enough that AvP will fulfil as promised and I’ll receive what I pledged for.

So….what do I think about crowdfunding?  Well its a gamble, you could lose your money but for some truly awesome products I’m willing to take that risk.  Ive had mixed luck and you could argue I should quit whilst Im ahead but as an entry into a new game its always worth pledging £1 to become a backer.  I can always increase my pledge at a later date.  All I ask from Project Creators is that you talk to us, the Backers.  Yes its your vision but you haven’t spent the money to make it happen.  We are Customers and without us you have a failed crowdfunded project.  I can absorb a delay or even a change but you MUST MUST MUST give us the information we need to back and continue to back your projects.  If you expect a leap of faith you have to give us something to believe in.  Talk to us and keep us engaged and involved.  Your future in directly linked to the success of your games………it is a symbiotic relationship between Backer and Project Creator.  We are no bottomless pocketed cash cows to be milked as and when it suits you….we deserve better.

My final piece of advice is as follows and directed to Backers….if you cannot afford to lose the money do not Back the project.  No matter the success of a project your money can dissappear off into the sunset and I would advise checking out the company or people involved before you commit.  Worst case is pledge £1 to get involved and then upgrade the pledge later if necessary.

The Devils Run: Route 666 Kickstarter by Word Forge Games

As part of the Hairy Gamers on Facebook I get to see a lot of Kickstarters for various games made my friends and companies and if Im honest I very rarely ever commit to these unless they truly interest me.  Recent investments include the Battlesystems Sci-Fi Terrain and PRODOS AvP:The Hunt Begins, one of which has been delivered and the other is in the final stages of delivery following approval by Fox.  Im happy with both.  I like Kickstarter as a mechanism for funding projects and its good that backers can receive exclusive content and artwork etc that your average joe-gamer buying via retail wont receive as a thank you for backing the project.  Kickstarter works.

Recently a game appeared that made me sit back and take notice, and I’ll tell you all why.  As a younger gamer I played Games Workshops Gorkamorka and Necromunda.  I also played a Steve Jackson game called Car Wars.  It used cardboard vehicles and had a rather complicated rules system.  Some small part of me wished I could combine all three into one awesome game using customisable miniatures involving gangs attacking eachother on the road in a post apocalyptic world…..a bit like Mad Max.  Nothing ever really filled that void for me as a gamer….until recently.

GW's Gorkamorka.

GW’s Gorkamorka.

Gorkamorka contents.

Gorkamorka contents.

GW's Necromunda.

GW’s Necromunda.

Necromunda contents.

Necromunda contents.

Steve Jackson Games Car Wars.

Steve Jackson Games Car Wars.

Steve Jackson Games Car Wars contents.

Steve Jackson Games Car Wars contents.

Via the rather excellent friend of the Hairy Gamers, Mark Rapson, I became aware of a new game about to hit Kickstarter.  It was perfectly timed given the reboot to the Mad Max franchise and the success of Sons of Anarchy.  It had everything I had been waiting for…..cars, guns, gangs, combat, crazy post-apocalyptic characters all in one neat package and even better the miniatures would be produced by PRODOS a company well known for its resin miniatures and excellent customer service.  Seemed like everything was in place was a successful Kickstarter.  The product?  Well its The Devil’s Run: Route 666 by Word Forge Games.

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The Devil’s Run: Route 666 is a 2, or more, player family game of post-apocalyptical mechanical carnage set in the near future; a dark and barbaric place, where World War 3 has seen the demise of the USA and Russia. Twenty years after the war, those that have survived must fight for everything. Post-apocalyptic North America is a feudal land run by numerous gangs, the most powerful of which control the interstates and rush to win control of the aid-drops (ADs) delivered by the new superpowers; the SRI (Super-Republic of India), the UCE (United Countries of Europe) and Brazilia (formerly South America). Each player controls a gang of ramshackle vehicles and their characterful drivers as they race across the remains of America to lay claim to the aid drops and the riches they contain. Each gang will do whatever it takes to get to the drops first…murder, death, kill, race, win!


Its a 20mm (1:72 scale) vehicular combat game based on the major interstates of a post-apocalyptic former USA.  You build a gang and fight for control of the roads running your rivals off the road and destroying their bikes, trikes, pick-ups and buggies as you strive to become the most dominant gang.  The game utilises resin miniatures and dice to create a customisable combat game.

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There is a Facebook group dedicated to this game, if you’re interested I suggest that a good starting point!


You can also find a growing community dedicated to custom models and updates and spit-ballin’ ideas for The Devils Run on Facebook too:-


There’s also a YouTube video giving some background behind the game, the look and feel of the product and showing some of the awesome characterful artwork for this game:-


Go take a look!  Get involved and make a pledge!  I have!

#borntobewild #highwaytohell