Thanks to getting out and about in the local gaming shop I found a new gaming buddy who lives about 100m from our building. We've been playing a few games of 40k since we live so close and last night we managed to get together again and thrown down for some Dreadfleet fun.
I didn't introduce all of the rules because it would have been a steep learning curve so for this game, we ignored the wind changes, the random fate card effects and some of the shooting modifiers. Instead we went with a fairly basic kill-em-all battle setup with the islands placed in the middle.
My buddy and his wife decided to take the bad guys and I got to play the good guys for once. As you can see, I'm not finished with the painting but slowly the set is starting to come together and look better.
The funky seascape map hung over the edge of the table but we still had most of the playing area to work with.
Who does not like to play boardgames with CAKE?
The Heldenhammer (good flagship) and the Blood Reaver (bad flagship) got into a close range broadside match. Sadly the Heldenhammer ended up with too much damage to keep going as it was battered by almost the entire Dreadfleet over a couple of turns. As my wounded captain tried frantically to issue enough repair orders, we were dealing with a collapsed gun deck (reducing broadsides), a dead first mate (reducing command rolls), two fires on board, a hole below the waterline, dead crew, smashed sails and a battered hull. In the end, it was just too much for the proud vessel and it slipped below the waves.
The last gasp of the game. After much fighting and mayhem in the middle and ships sinking left and right, the plucky dwarves, having slowly made their way to the battleground managed to shoot the Blood Reaver, board, kill the captain in a duel, win the boarding action, push off and shoot again to sink the enemy flagship, then ended up in a distant gunnery duel against the ghost ship, Shadewraith. Despite the difficulty in hitting their ghostly foe (you need a 6+ at any range) the dwarves had more guns and more armour to hold on for the final victory. My first ever win in Dreadfleet :-)
I know this game got a really bad rap when it came out and, while I'm not saying that it rewrites the book on quality games, it is fun to play. If you have a friend who has a set or find it on sale (some shops still stock it), then give it a go and I think you will enjoy it. I tend to think of it as more of a board game than a wargame but either way it goes down well with me. I like the variety of painting the different models too so there is a thumbs up on the that front as well.
All the best