12 April 2012

"G" is for...

G.A.S.L.I.G.H.T.
or, Glorious Adventures in Science Loosely Involving Generally Historical Times

G.A.S.L.I.G.H.T. Compendium (Cover)

   G.A.S.L.I.G.H.T. is a set of rules first published way back in 2001. The authors, John "Buck" Surdu and Chris Palmer, created a very generic set of 'framework' type miniatures rules for skirmish style games, where each player controls only a few individual figures, classified as either "Main Characters" or "Extras". These rules also allow for the creation of fantastic devices and vehicles. A point value system was created for Battles by G.A.S.L.I.G.H.T., which helps in creating scenarios. Unit activation is random, determined by a card draw. Combat resolution is generally very simple - and the Extras die in droves! (Redshirts not included with rules - you have to paint them on yourself!)

   The popularity of the original rules led to several sequels, including Battles by G.A.S.L.I.G.H.T. (for larger scale battles), To Be Continued by GASLIGHT (for more pulp adventure), and Adventures and Expeditions by GASLIGHT. Last year, a new compendium, including new rules for large scale fleet actions was released as well.

   One of the things I like most about the game is the ease with which you can modify it to fit exactly what you want to do. For example, they had no rules for automatons. So I made some up, no muss, no fuss. (You can find those rules in The Aethergraph, Vol. 1, Issue 1). Want big tough creatures like dinosaurs? No problem. Give them a Save, or Wound Points. Done. The rules are really very flexible, which is a huge plus for me. They also work equally well for 25 or 15mm figures.

   This is my go-to rules set for VSF, unless I am doing really big battles, for which I use When the Navy Walked and 6mm figures. I have played several other sets, including The Sword and the Flame, Martian Empires, and Valor, Steel and Flesh. And I always go back to GASLIGHT.

4 comments:

Elderac said...

Although I have yet to play my first GASLIGHT game, I have been reading the rules and really like the versatility.

I especially appreciate the point system introduced in Battles by GASLIGHT.

This is a great series and I look forward to the rest of the alphabet.

Consider adding some additional items that start with day's letter at the end of each entry, such as Africa, Boiler, Coal, Dirigable, Earth, Forced Draft, Gears, etc. While I agree with your choices, and have had fun anticipating the next day's choice, it would be interesting to see what other words begin with the same letter.

Thanks for a wonderful series. Anyone interested in VSF should check it out.

Mark "Geo" Gelinas

J Womack, Esq. said...

Mark,

Thanks for your kind words.

Regarding your idea of additional items which start with the same letter, I was planning on doing a "Son of A to Z" or something similar, to at least briefly go over some of the other ideas I had for each letter which for whatever reason were not chosen for that day's "official" entry. Most letters have several.

Elderac said...

If I may ask, I am curious as to what GASLIGHT values you assign to the various Martian units you have. (I don't have any Venusian units, yet, but reading your blog has opened my eyes to new possibilities.)

Do you assign a shoot value to troops that are not armed with a missile weapon?

I noticed that Battles does not have a unit cost modifier for Green or Crack troops (unless I overlooked it). Do you modify unit values for this?

I only have the basic book and Battles. If the Compendium is more comprehensive, I may need to get that.

If you have answered these questions, directly or indirectly in a post, pointing me in that direction would suffice.

I have a lot of back posts to read still.


Mark "Geo" Gelinas

J Womack, Esq. said...

To answer your points, Mark:

1) I do usually assign a Shoot value to non-missile troops. I use it for things like spotting ambushes, etc.

2) I don't recall ever seeing a modifier for troop quality. Usually I just have regulars, but I think if you kept the numbers of such units even for each side (say, a unit of Crack troops for each), it wouldn't be a problem.