Sunday, January 7, 2018

Preparing for Dragon Rampant

The first game in my 2018 Six Game Challenge will be Dragon Rampant.

I purchased this a while back and have read through it. While there are many aspects that I like, overall it seemed like too much of a hassle to convert to my preferred gaming style. What factors are problematic for me?

Individually-Based Figures
The rules seem geared for 25/28mm figures, each individually based. I prefer micro-figures so individual basing is not possible. One can get around this by using a lot of markers or keeping a roster and checking off casualties.

Buckets of Dice
A foot unit will roll 12 D6s when it attacks. I don't even know if I have 12 D6s! I toyed with the idea of reducing the number of dice, but think it might break the game.

Table Size
The rules don't specify a required table size, but the author does recommend a 4 ft x 6 ft table. My table is not that big! In fact, I would like to use my portable wargame kit, which features a diminutive 8 inch x 10 inch board.

The first two objections are not really a problem for my initial experiment. I can scrounge up enough dice and use a roster. My biggest problem is with the table size - I need to scale down. But how?

I actually started with the units themselves. DR recommends mounting infantry figures on 20-25mm bases. Let's use 25mm, which is approximately 1 inch. If we have our figures in 2 ranks, an infantry unit will have a frontage of 6 inches. My bases are 1 inch wide. So that is a 1/6 ratio.
Correction - my bases are 20mm wide, which would be 1/6 for 20mm bases. I initially did the math wrong because my assumption about base size was incorrect

At a 1/6 ratio, what is our table size? A 4 x 6' table would scale down to 8 x 12". That's pretty close to my 8x10" board.

Next we have to scale down movement and missile ranges. Missiles are easy; they have a range of 6, 12, or 18", which scale down to 1, 2, or 3 inches.

Movement becomes more difficult, however, because they are not in 6" increments. Some troop types move 8 or 10", which leaves me dealing with fractional inches. What if I measure in centimeters instead? Well, at 1/6, 8" becomes 3.4 cm and 10" becomes 4.2 cm. Seems a bit fiddly.

I did some more number crunching and eventually tried out a 1/5 ratio. Here are the conversions:

6" becomes 3cm
8" becomes 4cm (actually 4.1 but close enough. The rest are similarly rounded)
10" becomes 5cm
12" becomes 6cm
18" becomes 9cm

At 1/5, my board equates to 40 x 50", which is slightly smaller than recommended but still reasonable.

So it looks like 1/5 will work.

1 comment:

  1. I've played DR with 40mm frontage HOTT elements constituting a unit, and cm as the move distances, so it can be scaled down.

    But you're right - the combat system relies on those buckets of dice. I can't see that you can scale that down without fundamentally altering the whole game.