Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Iron Stars

I picked up a game (download PDF's) called Iron Stars.

It is a Victorian Era space opera tabletop wargaming. I have an affinity for Victorian Era gaming. It was a time when the world was still mostly unexplored and great names were being made in history. Now throw in Science Fiction on top of it with Ethereal Flyers that travel between the Earth and Mars. So Jules Verne's vision of "From The Earth To The Moon" comes alive.

The role playing game SPACE:1889 was a wonderful game by defunk Games Designer's Workshop. They also produced Sky Galleons of Mars (a table top game of flying ships on Mars). It was truly incredible and I still have my copy. (And I have to give a plug to Noise Monster's Production of 4 radio shows (on CD) based on SPACE:1889!)

Iron Stars brings Majestic 12 Games vision of World History and incorporating the HG Wells "War of the Worlds" aftermath and subsequent knowledge of "offworlders" in a great little game.

The book is laid out very well and the rules are easy to understand. The rules are easy to understand and flow well. The reference cards for the ships are well laid out and easy to understand. With just a few reads of the rules and some quick ship vs ship combat I no longer needed to review the rulebook.

Each book comes with Card Stock ships (basically triangles with the picture of the ships on them). Since the book is a PDF, you can print as many ships as you need to create the types of fleets that you want for the fleets laid out in the books.

The only drawback to the game is it is based on d10. And the ONLY reason I consider that a drawback is that if someone not familiar with wargaming in general would not have d10's on hand. Having the game based on a d6 would have opened it up to a broader audience. Of course this is an extremely minute drawback. Games requiring other die types have been around for decades. So access to such dice should be quite easy.

I highly recommend it. (I also have the two supplements and I highly recommend those too).