Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Ronin among The Cherry Blossoms...

The Easter Weekend moved our regular Sunday night game to Monday.  And if that was not upheaval enough, the Major announced that he would be supplying both the rules and all the figures for the game!  All I had to do would be to set up a small table with a slight Japanese theme.  Luckily the cherry blossoms are out so that solved one part of the table...

The ruleset that The Major brought over turned out to be Ronin from Osprey.  Which was great because I have been very curious about these rules and had almost ordered them twice.  But it was the figs that stole the show!  The Major had recently won a bunch of painted 1/35 scale Samurai, Ashigaru and retainers from ebay and was eager to show them off.  And they are fabulous!   So toylike and wonderful.  They are a little smaller than Britains toy soldiers, roughly about the size of Lego Mini-figs.  But what pleasure holding and moving them!  (I had sudden mad thoughts of selling my collection of 25/28s in order to plunge and stay in the land of 1/35!)  Anyway, enough blather...

  The local Daimyo had approved the petition of two Buntais of Bushi to settle their dispute in his courtyard under his watchful gaze.

The Major's Buntai.

The Private's Buntai.

To keep everything simple as we broke in these new rules, we both used the Bushi list and had the same force:  one Bushou, one Hatamoto, three Samurai, two Ashigaru with bows and three other Ashigaru.

The Buntais meet.

First blood!

Combat is very cool, and at times, very tense and exciting.  Each player has a set number of combat counters and secretly allocates whether they will be used for Defence or Attack or any combination of the two.

There are four different categories of wounds:  Stun, Light, Grievous and Critical.  Each affects the performance of the warriors in different ways.

The Major takes me out!!!

But my Buntai bravely and resolutely carries on.  "Honour!  Revenge!"

The marker beside the Samurai shows that he is suffering from a Grievous wound, which greatly reduces his combat effectiveness.

The machine that was the Major's Bushou!

"No, no, no.  You can't come in here!"

The spiral counters are Stun markers.  With the heady scent of all the Giant Fallen Cherry Blossoms, everyone was getting a little giddy.  (Or was it the Sapporo?)

My Last Samurai (Tom) finally gets the drop on the Major's Bushou and takes him down!   "Rear attacks are not shameful." Toms tells himself.

My Oni roar in approval!

At that, we stop.  Ronin proved to be a very enjoyable game.  I look forward to playing it again and trying out the various Attributes and Abilities that are available. 

Now to watch some Kurosawa!


  1. What a great game and wonderful figures.Very tempting to get some Samurai, but have been dithering between 40mm or 54mm (or even 25mm Dixon bods).

    1. Thanks, Springinsfeld! Although the Dixons are very nice, I'm in such a large scale frame of mind these days that I throw in a vote for 54mm, if I may. And Springinsfeld I really love those 54mm ECW regiments you have been putting together!

  2. Wonderful looking game ! Knowing you and your taste for proper manner, I'm nearly sure you guys performed a sonkyo before and after the battle and that you meditated in seiza to gain the blessing of Featherstone-sama.

    The Sakura petals are just the extra cherry on the cake (uhuhu).

    1. Thank you, Mr. ALMan! And of course! I wonder if the creaking of our knees were heard over the Atlantic?

      And Mr.ALMan, thank you for your kind words about this blog on the oldhammer forum! I was happily poking around there the other day when I noticed it. But oh, now all I'm thinking about is Cherry Cake. In the shape of a dwarf...

    2. I'm not going to lie here, first attempt was a total failure. I made moulds of what I had under hand (running GS patriarch and an old inquisitor) and tried to make chocolate recasts...
      Let's say I'm far more skilled with milliput and green stuff than with chocolate... first battle is an utter failure but the war is not over... I'll let you know about the progress.

    3. Hey, Mr. ALMan, I just am seeing this right now.

      I admire your skill with green stuff and such, and I have the utmost faith that one day very soon you will succeed most amazingly in chocolate! I'm excited to see, and perhaps, taste the results! Maybe starting with a chocolate Nurgle Greater Demon might be the first way forward?