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A Fistfull of Miniatures Basic Game (second edition)» Forums » Reviews

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f s
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i do not own or know the old Fistfull.. rules, so i cannot compare.

the rues are available as a purchase pdf-download, run about 40 pages, of which about 10 sides are the actual rules and the rest is the point system, scenarios and a few (pretty bland)army lists.

first of all: this could be a good set of rules, simple, effective, straight forward. more precisely it could develop to be one.

the book states that nearly any basing system can be used, provided both sides are based similiar. however, the system is based on stands, a number of which make up one unit. its 4+ stands a unit and 4 stands is quite brittle. the number of minis per base is unimportant. the game would work with the popular De Bellis... style of basing and also the Warhammer style single figure basing. similiar systems will work as well.

you will need about 30 - 60 "stands" a side, which translates into about 100 to 300 minis a side, depending on your basing system (its really hard to figure this out and less is possible, if you use, for example, single based minis)

a big table is necessary. even vanilla infantry moves a whopping 8", so its not hard to see that at least 4' by 6' are in order, even for small battles. bigger would be better.
if you use small bases (=stands) you probably could measure in centimeters, not inches, and thus cut down on tablespace.

units are placed in formation (line or column), affecting movement and combat values.

units basically are classed by being heavy or light, by being infantry, cavalry or chariots and by their weapons. they also have a morale/traning grading.

for combat (both ranged and close) it uses a casualty sheet and modifieres and only an averaged die as the luck momentum, so combat is quite predictable.
the rules on how to handle melees involving multiple units are a bit sketchy, as are other parts of the rules. it can all be solved with a bit of comon sense and gentlemanliness (hah!), but will not satisfy the rules lawyer types.

combat is very bloody and games wil be quick. i think 1 to 2 hours should normally be enough.

morale is based on how many stands are left in the unit, so smaller units crumble quickly.

the point system allows you to build all kinds of vanilla units, if they are infantry, cavalry, chariots or artillery.

wagenburg, elephants, flyers, magic, special abilities etc. are left out.

i think in its current form the rules are not very useful, as what you can actually play with them is very restricted.
they are useless for fantasy battles, as they are now. they might work for dark age and the like, were troop types are not overly varied.

i am staying tuned for the expansion books.
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Lance McMillan
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Lakebay
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Nice review. However, you've gotta remember that the original AFFOM rules were thrown together over the course of a weekend for a gang of buddies in the Chicago area to play out "one final giant battle, with everybody's minis on the table" before several of them moved away after graduating from university. It was never intended to be the authoritative be-all/end-all of miniatures rules, just a quick-and-dirty system to accomodate large numbers of figures on the gaming table for a quick game. In that vein I think AFFOM succeeded fairly well, but the 2nd Edition seems to be trying to shift the rules towards more serious/accurate wargaming (i.e. more simulation oriented, rather than just "fun"), which stretches the limits of the game.
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f s
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interesting information, thank you.

however, i cannot realy see how that changes the point that the 2nd edition basic rules as published ommit too much to be really useful. for ancients they would really need elephants and maybe a rule for fanatics and the like.
for dark age they lack something like shieldwall.
for everything involving gunpowder they lack.. ..gunpowder
for fantasy they lack everything.

so, what are they really good for at the moment?

however, much of this was covered in the "1st edition" and its supplement. the rules could be very good if only this additional stuff was made available for the 2nd ed. and maybe even enhanced a bit.

it is in its current state that they are nearly useless, but a great future might still come upon us.
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Brett Bernstein
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Hello. These are the basic rules for beginners and those who just want quick battles. Some features were left out because the game would no longer be basic in design. Those rules will be covered in the advanced and fantasy books. In the meantime, you can add elephants with this document:
http://www.pigames.net/collaborative/index.php?action=read&p...

Also, the game is not much different from the original, just more simplified and consistent. The omission of the fantasy suggestions is pretty much the only cut - since they add a lot of complexity.

The advanced rules will focus on abilities for each unit rather than lumping them into pre-determined specifics.

Thank you.
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