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Introduction to All the King's Men

This past Thursday, I met up with Ed and Johnny for an intro game of All the King's Men. This is a fairly new game that can be played with 28mm figs or with the gorgeous 54mm figs.

My impressions of ATKM.. It's a fun, quick game with some simple mechanics. Ed taught the game to me and Johnny Rod in just a few minutes. The game is played with movement trays and usually 12 individuals to one tray.  Each tray is a single unit.  Every unit has a status of green, yellow, red, or tapped. This is to symbolize how tired the unit has become and it also indicates how well it can perform an attack and defend.

Each army has one or more commanders who can give one order. If a unit is given an order, it executes the order and then moves down one status level, (ex. green to yellow). Each unit has twelve hits and routs after losing half it's hits.  A standard deck of cards is used to determine which commander can act (red or black suite) and face cards (J, K, Q, A) results in some special actions.

We played a simple game from the "Seven Years War". I had a coalition of Saxon and Dutch forces, while Johnny had a mix of Prussia and Hanover. We both had one unit each of skirmishers, two cavalry units, two light artillery, and four infantry each. The first turn took about an hour to resolve as we were both trying to learn the game and figure out tactics. I rushed my cav out too early and Johnny was able to take advantage of the better positions on the map. I sent in the skirmishers up the center of the map, where they were destroyed whilst defending a low wall. At the end of the first turn it looked like Johnny would wrap the game up. but on the second turn we were moving very quickly and make decisions easily. I got infantry on the flank of one of his units across a plowed field. After that, the dice got hot and Johnny took a lot of casualties. The game was decided on the very last action when JR took a bad gamble by charging his cavalry into a fresh group of Dutch infantry. He lost the cav unit which brought him to 50% of his forces and ended the game.

Ed will be running a demonstration game of ATKM at the upcoming ChimaeraCon.



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