Nordic Weasel Games

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Laserstorm 2nd edition released

Jason has been busy at work updating LaserStorm to a 2nd edition, similar to the work he did on Clash on the Fringe revised edition. That means not only adding new features like solo tools and air units, but also a full colour rulebook with diagrams and lavish miniatures photography. 

If you are not familiar with LaserStorm, it is a set of combat rules for 6mm (as well as related scales) science fiction ground combat, allowing huge armies to be put on the table. Included are build systems (two of them in fact), a scenario generator, map based campaign rules and a host of ready to play units that can be used as is. 

The rules are available at 

Gothic Horror Skirmish. A taster

One of the projects I have been working on, and which is closing a releasable state, is "Gothic Horror Skirmish". 

This is just a working title and I am not sure what the actual title will be.

You can probably guess what the topic is, though I should clarify that it will be more Edwardian than Victorian (though the weapon selections can work fine for 1880s/1890s settings too). The aim is a pre WW1 vibe with squads consisting of your pick of adventurers, soldiers, criminals and various classic horror monsters.

This will be primarily a squad versus squad game with a collection of scenarios. There will be rules for solo mechanics, but this is not a campaign or adventure type game, at least not at first. Rather this is the sort of thing for people who enjoy building and painting up squads of cool figures. You can still do that solo, but it is also going to be well suited for playing with a friend or in a small club setting where you might already have a bunch of figures sitting around that can be used. 

The plan is for the initial release to feature 6 character types, 8 monster types, 3 types of magic and 6 scenarios. 

I am not sure of the expected page count yet, but the plan is for the game to be on the slimmer side. Not everything has to be a massive tome after all. 

Over time the game will be expanded with more material. The thinking is small (and cheap) expansion packs with new creatures, spells and scenarios so you can have something new to play with every couple of months. 

Interview with Ash from GMG

I did an interview with Ash from Guerilla Miniature Games and you can check it out here:


We discussed a number of topics relating to creating games and working as a writer.

History Dad. How building armies work

Post number 2:

Today I am gonna chat a bit about building an army works. 

The historical option

First and foremost you can of course just pick some units that fits your scenario, We have also included 4 historical overviews of what late-war infantry platoons looked like and those are usable basically straight out of the gate. 

The standard game size is the "reinforced platoon" which usually means 3 sections or squads of infantry and a few items in support like a tank, an armoured car or a couple of heavy weapons. Tabletop gamers like to get a few toys on the table after all.

This is also a pretty good size of game to collect and paint for. A force of say 35 infantry, a machine gun team, a tank and an armoured car is not gonna set you back a fortune to buy and you can get them done over a weekend (in 15mm anyways). 

Another advantage here is that if you already have troops done up for games like Arc of Fire, Rate of Fire, Bolt Action or Chain of Command you can just use your armies right as they are. 

(Some folks may have armies based on team bases with 2-4 figures per base. I will add something to the book to address that, but for now you will have to improvise a bit here). 

General army building

If you want some guidelines for building a generic force, we include a sort of "catch all platoon build" system. 

This is pretty simple and is intended for pick-up games and for cases where you may not have accurate platoon information available but would still like to get a game going. Basically you build a platoon of 3 or 4 combat units, then take up to 2 units of support. For example if you agree to play a tank heavy game, your platoon might be 3 tanks and then you bring along 2 squads of infantry in support. 

For large games, 3 or 4 platoons of the same type (infantry or tank) count as a company allowing 1 additional support unit per platoon.

Once again, this sort of approach is really intended more for quick games or when you just are coming up short on what a Hungarian reserve infantry division should be organised like. 

The points system

Whenever you discuss points systems, people tend to get funny about it. However including it means people can use it or not, whereas leaving it out means I am making that choice for you. Part of my approach with History Dad was exactly to let you make the decision. 

The points system is pretty straight forward: Pick the quality and morale rating for a unit, add any special conditions like engineers or a forward observer, add the cost of any weapons that are not just pistols or bolt action rifles and voila, you are done. A standard soldier with a rifle comes out to 10 points. The absolute worst soldier possible (Green quality, Morale 6+) is a pretty paltry 3 points while the most hardened (Veteran, 2+ Morale) sits at 18 points. 

Vehicles use a simple formula to determine their points cost. The vehicle profiles in the book all have their costs pre-calculated for you but I wanted to give people the formula so you can modify the provided vehicles or make your own. 

The pre-built British platoon comes to 433 points. If I add in a Sherman I'd be at 643 points. 

Two light off-map guns (3" mortars f.x.) is another 160 points bringing us to 803 points. A good aiming point to start will be somewhere between 500 and 1000 points. This of course does depend on what style of game you want. You might agree to use only infantry and armoured cars for example or you may flip things around and mostly play as a tank game. 

Rolling dice

If all of this is not your cup of tea, I also included options to roll up both random platoons and random support units. These tools are provided for you to do with what you want. If you play solo, you might build your own platoon but randomly generate the opposition. Or you may take a random support unit with you each mission.

In a pick up game, you may start with an infantry platoon each and randomly decide on the support or you might even roll up your own forces at the start of a campaign. Of course random units are not likely to be even. Its entirely possible you get heavy tanks and I don't get any such thing. Use this as a springboard to make an interesting scenario. You can always start with the random force and then give a small number of points or unit slots to "tidy things up". 

History Dad. Core mechanics examples

It is a little too early for any battle reports to exist yet, so I wanted to give people a quick walkthrough of the core mechanics of how the turn sequence works, how units work, how to shoot at infantry and how to shoot at tanks.

A future post will talk about armies and how they are built.

This is just an overview, think of it like the crash course you might get before playing the game at a convention.

Turn sequence:

The turn sequence is how each game turn is organised. Basically it tells us who goes when. In a normal game you roll a die: 1-3 the Axis player goes first, 4-6 the Allied player goes first. The player selected by the roll picks a leader to activate. If it is a squad leader or tank leader, they activate their unit. So their squad or vehicle can take actions normally. 

If it is an officer, they can activate two units within 8" and line of sight. Senior NCO's can activate a single unit within 4". 

So for example when it is my turn to go, I may pick my platoon leader and then two of the infantry squads in the platoon. Once each of those units have moved and fired, the other player goes. When they have gone, play reverts to me and I might pick a tank on the other side of the table and so forth.

Having leaders in place and near their troops means more flexibility in activating, representing the officer or senior sergeant shouting at the grunts to get moving. Each unit goes once per turn. 

What can a unit do?

When a unit is selected to act, it can move OR fire if it is Green quality (the lowest grade). These units are not really capable of "fire and move" tactics so it is one or the other. If you have a lot of Green units try to have some squads provide covering fire while other squads advance. 

Experienced quality units can move and then fire, while Veterans can move before or after firing. 

There are a bunch of other options like trying to find concealed enemies, engineering etc. but we are keeping it basic here.

Shooting at the other guys

Being a wargame we will usually want to shoot at the opposing army. 

Veteran infantry can split their fire over two targets, Experienced and Green troops must pick a single target (and remember Greens don't shoot if they moved). 

Combat is intentionally pretty straight forward. Each weapon grants a number of firepower dice. These are added up with the hit roll depending on the position of the target. You need 4+ to hit in the open and 6's in cover. Infantry are a bit better at attacking targets in cover if they are within 6" (where they hit on a 5+) to account for grenades and so forth. 

The key "clever bit" is that hit resolution is delayed. Let's say I score 6 hits when I fire on some Germans. I mark 6 hits on the German squad. Once the Germans are activated next, we then roll 6 dice to see how many of those hits were casualties (fifty/fifty odds here) and remove the number of figures who got hit. This means neither of us know what is exactly happening right then. If I have a great turn of shooting and put 10 hits on you, I can probably worry less about that unit now since on average they will have taken 5 losses. But they may have only lost 1 or 2 or the entire squad may be gone. I can keep pouring fire into them or I can switch targets and hope it doesn't come back to haunt me. 

Morale is in the form of suppression checks: If you shoot at a unit and score any hits, they may be suppressed. They get a D6 roll against their morale score to avoid this, otherwise when they activate next they receive half the firepower dice and are limited in their ability to move freely. Suppression lasts until they have activated next, so if you are advancing on a position, you have to keep hitting them with fire. Units with very good morale scores are difficult to suppress, so keep hitting them. 

Officers can assist units nearby in recovering. It can be quite helpful to station a senior NCO next to a machine gun team for example to keep them firing. 

Shooting at tanks

Alright that was the crunchies, what about tanks?

Tanks receive a number of shots based on the crew in the turret. A proper 3 person turret (gunner, loader, commander) can fire twice per turn when halted and once on the move (firing from a short halt really) while a 2 person turret (where the commander has to load) you only get one shot and must be halted. This really stings when playing for example early T34. 

Assuming we hit the target, I roll two dice at the same time. One is for Luck and is either unlucky (on a 1) or lucky (on a 6). Unlucky shots always bounce off and lucky ones get 1.5 times the penetration. The second is a hit location roll. We just use a single table for ease here with hits assigned to the hull, turret or tracks. 

There is not a separate penetration roll (though an option is included if you prefer this). By default we compare the gun rating to the armour value which tells you if the hit was minor, major or massive and then you roll on the appropriate damage table for the effect.

Lets say my Sherman scored a hit on a Panzer IV hull. The gun rating of 10 exceeds the hull armour of 8, so I get a major penetration. A D6 roll on the damage table results in a 4: Silent.

The tank is seemingly dead, but on their next activation, they have a fifty/fifty chance of returning to action or actually being dead. As with infantry neither of us will know just yet. 

Other results can include immobilisation, burning or a catastrophic ammunition explosion. 

That's mostly it!

I hope that gives you a feel for the basics of combat. I have intentionally kept the infantry combat quite simple to make it easy to memorise, as well as being pretty tangible (making it easy to convert scenarios or real life information into the game). 

Tank combat is a little more detailed because tank fans would be disappointed if you didn't have chances of knocking out the tracks or scoring a lucky hit. Having slightly more detailed tank rules means that the game can also be "flipped" so the core of your force is a tank platoon with some infantry in support. 

The New Era (tm)

Today I want to talk about the new era of Nordic Weasel Games.

That sounds very dramatic and potentially a little ominous so let me quickly reassure that everything is just fine. This is all good news.

As those of you who have been with me for a long time know, NWG has published a lot of games in the past with a pretty active release schedule for games and expansion material. I also used to maintain a number of “live” titles which received regular updates and additions. 

With the cooperation with Modiphius, things slowed down quite a lot to focus on those games (and a few secret projects). This is not going anywhere, but it is time to refocus and get back up to speed. 

This means a slate of new games I am working on including some pretty exciting things and updates to a select couple of old titles. Some of these projects are RPG’s, some are miniatures games, some are..well, you will have to wait and see. 

As we release these games, I am also going to get back in the swing of having regular update and expansion schedules. The idea is to time game updates (errata, clarifications etc.) roughly monthly and then release expansions at regular intervals. Some of this will depend on the exact title, reception and so forth of course.

I also want to clarify that these will not all strictly be solo campaign games. There will be a variety, though I do intend to keep an eye on solo players going forward of course. 

Additionally I will be expanding a bit with my wife picking up some editing and proof reading duties as we slowly turn NWG into a proper family business. Hopefully this also means more miniatures photography in the games and other such advantages.  

History Dad is live!

History Dad World War 2 is now live. You can grab it at if you just want to get straight into the business. Otherwise read on:

Welcome to the front!

History Dad: The Second World War is a set of miniatures wargame rules for you: 

Whether you are an old hand or brand new to historical wargaming we have you covered with everything you could need to play out exciting battles in the greatest conflict of human history:

*A straight forward game system with minimal use of dice modifiers. You can focus on outflanking the enemy tanks and suppressing their troops, instead of trying to memorise a lot of numbers.

*A game that is friendly to being played whatever way you want to. Whether you want to create historical scenarios, play pick up games with army lists, play campaign games, play with friends or solo, it is all provided for. 

*Easy to adapt both historical encounters as well as scenarios from other skirmish games.

The rules are aimed at the platoon level with a typical force having 20-40 infantry and whatever supporting units you like such as a tank or two. You could potentially play quite large games but we suggest starting out smaller. 

All figures are based individually with each figure representing exactly one soldier. 

You may have questions at this point:

Who are the creators?

This is a straight up Nordic Weasel Games production so the writing and design is all Ivan Sørensen, with editing and proof reading assistance by Traci Morrissette (making this the first family project for NWG).

What are the basic mechanics?

Alternating activations with officers being able to activate multiple units, straight forward combat with delayed resolution, a bit more detail for vehicles (where lucky shots and hit locations make an appearance), suppression, concealed units and so forth. As a bonus both close assault and indirect fire rules do not require a correspondence course to understand.

What are some clever bits from the rules?

Casualty resolution is delayed so you don’t know how effective your fire was until the unit goes next. This applies to tanks as well which will often go “silent” when hit and you will have to decide if you give them another round or pick another target.

What all is included?

The “scenario rules” include mechanics for things like engineering and stealth missions, there are 7 scenarios to play, platoon information for the four “big” late-war powers (US, UK, German, Soviet), stats for 25 mid and late war vehicles, tables for rolling random forces, campaign rules, a points system (with the formula documented so you can set up your own vehicles quite easily) and solo play guidelines. 

What scale I can play in? 

Any you like! As long as the figures are based individually you are good to go.

Practically speaking you will probably be using figures from 15mm and upwards. 

Can I use an army built for another skirmish game?

Absolutely. Again, as long as they are individually based you are fine.

What if I don’t know anything about World War 2?

Do not fear! The rule book contains a host of explanations of various concepts of war and every chapter features War Explainers to help you understand what is going on and how the rules relate (or differ) from real, historical combat.

Will there be updates?

Yes. As is always the case when a game is released it turns out that there’s a typo that escaped detection, a rule that could be explained better or a scenario that needs tweaking. There will be updates forthcoming on a regular schedule.

For this reason we do suggest that you wait a few days to print out your copy. 

Will there be more scenarios or expansions?

We are already discussing scenario books covering Poland 39 and Norway 40 in greater detail.

Will there be other conflicts covered?

Great War (1914-1918) will almost certainly be covered though possibly as a stand alone book. If there is interest and sales are sufficient, I would like to cover Korea later as well. 

What exactly is a History Dad?

A History Dad lives within many of us. They find tanks and artillery guns cool, they think a lot about the Ardennes and they probably have “Never was so much owed by so many to so few” as their email signature message. In short, it is a short hand for someone who always had a fascination with and interest in the war but who perhaps never quite took the step into painting model soldiers and playing battles. Perhaps it all looked a bit intimidating. Perhaps they wanted to be able to finish the game in time to get the grill going.

Well, this is their time. Whether they are a mom, dad, sibling or just an interested party, the spirit of the History Dad is alive and well.

More insight into the process

One of the things that is changing this year is to give you guys a bit more of insights into what I am working on at any given time, particularly when it comes to experiments and ideas.

For now, this will probably be mainly on Patreon but the plan is that each month you'll get to see a "snapshot" of what a project looks like at the moment. These snapshots may be playable or not, it just depends.

The value to you is that you get to have a sneak peek into upcoming things, but you can also help out by letting me know if you find a particular snapshot exciting. If it is playable (or reasonably so) you can of course also test things out and get feedback in at the early stages.

If you are newer here, bear in mind that not every project is a solo game and not every solo game is a warband game :) 

With that folks at any Patreon tier can have a look today and see a snap shot of a tentatively titled "gothic horror" game. 

Leipzig 007 and 008

I realised I forgot to post on the blog about update 007 so today is a two for one, unless you already checked your Wargame Vault account.

These last two updates bring in Follow On missions (a mission you complete successfully has a chance of spawning a follow on mission, which uses a different objective table) and Patrol missions (missions where the enemy is deployed using "blip" markers that can move erratically and spawn additional enemies. Since some objectives require fighting the enemy and some do not, this should create some interesting moments in trying to figure out the best path forward.

The blip spawn rates on the resolution tables may require tweaking to dial in the difficulty. 

If you are confused about what "Leipzig" is, other than a fun vacation destination, it is a take on the "Five Parsecs" type of engine but for historical games set in the black powder era available here 

At present the rulebook is 25 pages so its still early days but new features are being added pretty regularly now. This is a great opportunity to experience the early days of a ruleset and help shape the way forward as things that are bare bones now (like character advancement) will get fleshed out more in the future. 

One of the things I have missed doing is this level of "living system" development where things can get updated and feedback can come in, in a lively manner, so I am enjoying doing this. 

V3 Renegade Scout. Aka the future

So I have wanted to do an update to Renegade Scout for a while, but the question of what to do has been bothering me for a long time.

"Unified Space" based skirmish gaming is getting a little crowded and the original goal of providing essentially an alternate rule set for old school 40K has been achieved. 

I think there is still room in the indie gaming space for a stat-heavy scifi wargame with an emphasis on points driven games, but which is more open ended than the big commercial offerings. 

The plan I have in mind for a third edition of Renegade Scout is essentially this:

A: Make a few rationalisations of the game rules to slim things down just a tiny bit. It'll still be a pretty detailed game, but try to shift some of that detail towards having more tactical options and less stat fiddling. This may break compatibility with 40K or it may not. 

There's also some obvious clunk that could use tidying up like hand to hand combat. 

B: Move the focus away from the Unified Space setting and instead towards more of a "build your own" scifi approach with more open-ended and generic troops. Im thinking maybe a trait system to allow building your own alien troops, as well as the possibility of working with figure manufacturers to provide stats for specific figures they own.

C: The original game won't disappear. It'll continue existing as a legacy game for the original purpose: Act as an alternative / hypothetical evolution of the original Rogue Trader. This means the folks who do use the rules with their old 40K armies are still able to do so. 

D: Continue work on making the game easier to use, both in unit building but also in having more ready to go scenarios you can plug your armies into. 

What do you think about this plan? Excited? Outraged? Strangely hankering for a burrito? Let me know.