Wednesday, 15 June 2011


Hey ho!

Following the Blackpowder game the other day, I was left with a number of questions, so I asked on the club forum and raised the points of interest to me.

Regular readers will know my dislike of forums and the reply I recieved was pretty much standard forum behaviour.

I was told it was 'umpire privilege!'.

Now rather than go through my questions, and point to historical inaccuracy of a number of misreadings that were 'umpire privelege!' I have found myself pondering a slightly different question. Namely why in wargaming is it so often impossible to ask questions?

I have read the Blackpowder rules maybe six or ten times, but like any set of rules it is impossible to fully assimilate the words on the page to the abstract of the game without playing. Reading and rereading is fine, except it is pretty much human nature that you end up reading the same rules over and over again, and completely missing other rules. Add to this that you often completely forget rules - though when you look at the page you think you remember the rule because you have read the page before.

One way of dealing with this is to debrief after the game.

And in truth a couple of the questions I had were due to 'umpire privilege' extending to not actually explaining certain design decisions/special rules either prior to or during the game. Which left myself and one of my team mates - who was also trying to learn the rules - scratching our heads, looking through the rule book and wondering what the heck was going on.

Still on the positive side I now know the relevant rules - and having found these out I am more of an admirer of the rules set due to the mechanics and game decisions taken by Rick Priestley when writing the rules.

I just don't understand the reluctance to enter into discussion.

Hey ho!


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