Sunday, September 20, 2015

Gaming at the Columbia River Maritime Museum

Earlier this year Lloyd Bowler, from Astoria Oregon, had proposed a game day at the Columbia River Maritime Museum.The idea was to have something along the lines of the NHMGS Game Days at the Museum of Flight (here is a report from our 2014 game day) in Seattle. But since it was the first year and there are fewer gamers near Astoria, it would start a little smaller.

The event date was set for Sunday, September 6. I had an event with my veterans group on Saturday in Portland, so it was relatively easy for my wife and I to go to Portland, spend the night in Astoria, and for me to attend the game day on Sunday.
Here are a few photos from the event.
The information table with some figures and rules
There were two gaming tables and an information table at the event. The museum is very nice (although I didn't get a chance to go through all the exhibits) and provided the tables in a good space with lots of passer-by traffic.
Wings of Glory setup
One of the tables had the Wings of Glory WWI game going on part of the table and other other part had a display of ACW figures.
Explaining the hobby and showing some of the Civil War figures
I was over at the other table most of the day, playing in a Battle of Memphis game using the Steam and Sail Navies rules. I like these rules, but it has been a little while since I played, so it took a few turns to get up to speed. 
Battle of Memphis, squadrons closing with each other
I was on the Confederate side, running a couple sidewheel gunboat rams. My plan was to sneak around the Union rear and then use my speed to hit them from the flanks. Unfortunately for my plan, the Union forces were disorganized early on when one of their ships ran aground on sandbar in the in middle of the river. The caused them to turn directly into my ships and I had to go head-to-head with a could City class ironclads. Luckily for me, I survived the pass-by broadsides and got one of my ships in position to ram the Union ram Switzerland.
CSS Bragg rams Switzerland
We had to wrap up the battle shortly after my successful ram. Both sides had taken some damage and the battle was really still up in the air, but I felt pretty good that I was the only one to sink an enemy ship.
In the afternoon, I joined in the Thunderboats hydroplane racing game (another game I haven't played for a while). Most of the racers were new to the game, so I had a slight advantage once I remembered how to play the game. I had a bad starting position, but about half-way through the first lap I decided to push my luck and was able to get in front of the pack.
My boat takes the lead in the first lap
After that, some good die rolling kept me in front for the win.

It was a fun time at the museum and it is always interesting to share a bit about the hobby with the general public, most of whom had never heard about wargaming.

Thanks to Lloyd and the Astoria crew for putting together the event.