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Sherman maneuvers his infantry into position

How To Start a Flames Of War League
Part One
by Nathan Howard

Earlier this year a couple members of the Fort Collins War Party tried Flames Of War for the first time after our friendly local game store picked up a few copies of the Open Fire starter set.

Learn more about the Open Fire Starter Set here...

Left: Sherman maneuvers his infantry into position.

As so many gamers before us, we were instantly hooked. Over the next three months our armies grew and so too did the interest of other club members. We decided that an escalation league with three, four-week stages would be the perfect way to get started. We would begin at the 600 point level and progress to 1000 points in stage two. Finally, in stage three, we would expand to 1500 point games and finish the league by hosting a local tournament.

Right: Terrain building; from start to finish.
Terrain building; from start to finish
All the hard work put into the terrain pays off Knowing that preparation is the key to a great event we sat down and talked through how we wanted to organise the league. With so many cool things that we could do it was important to make sure that we focused and didn’t try to take on too much. Once we had reduced the scope of the league to a manageable level we put together a packet that described the purpose, schedule and structure of the league. It also included clarification of the terrain rules relevant to our collection and the missions that we would be using, as well as game record sheets to turn into the organisers. 

Left: All the hard work put into the terrain pays off.
The scoring system was set up to encourage participation in all aspect of the hobby and allowed participants to earn points for playing games, running demo games for new players, painting their armies and helping to build terrain. With the help of our friendly local game store and Battlefront Miniatures we were even able to put together a small prize pool for each stage to reward the efforts of our players and help them prepare for the next stage.

Right: Painting up some German Pioneers for the next stage.
Painting up some German Pioneers for the next stage
Kyle's Fully painted (and deadly) Tankovy Batalon

With only a couple of weeks to go before the league started we realised that we would need a lot more terrain. We spent some time reading through a few of the excellent terrain threads on the Flames Of War forums and decided on making plenty of fields, forests, roads and hedges to create the feel of Western Europe. Over the course of a couple terrain making parties we were able to build and paint enough terrain to cover three small tables, perfect for 600 point games.

Check out the Terrain Modelling section of the forum here...

Left: Kyle's Fully painted (and deadly) Tankovy Batalon.

With all the preparation out of the way we were excited to start playing some games! The first stage of the league was fast and furious with over 100 games played by the 12 participants.

We expanded our terrain collection to adequately cover four full sized tables and now have eight participants with fully painted 600 point armies, and the rest are not far behind.

Right: James contemplates his next move.
James contemplates his next move
American Riflemen cautiously approach a Panzer on the ridge At the conclusion of the first stage we gave out awards for Favorite Opponent, Best Appearance, Highest League Standing, Most Games Played, and Best Effort, Worst Luck. Stage two promises a whole new level of game play with everyone bringing new units, strategies and tactics to the table.

Check out part two of this series here for tips on building out your army and results from our first Total War game....

Left: American Riflemen cautiously approach a Panzer on the ridge.

~ Nathan.

Last Updated On Thursday, February 10, 2011 by Blake at Battlefront