Friday, February 19, 2016

How do AAR? Help!

Ok, so I've been building and collecting 6mm scifi for a couple of years now, I've got a large collection of minis and a ton of terrain( and a whole lot more planned) but for the last year or so I have not played a single game.
There are various reasons for this, but mainly it boils down to lack of opponents and weird workhours making it dificult to go to game club evenings. To remedy this I've been looking at solo rules and I would like to start a little mini campaign to try various things out.
Now to keep myself motivated I thought I would post some AAR's of my games here on the blog. Turns out I suck at AAR's.
When things started heating up I totally forgot to take notes and the few pictures I took were not much to look at afterwards and did not really jogg my memory about what was hapening when I took them.
So I turn to you guys,
If you do an AAR, how do you document your games, do you take turn by turn notes and pictures or just the highlights. Do you write it down, use a recording device...
All tips and advice welcome.

To give you an idea of the kind of games I intend to play I'll show you the setup of the first game.
Here's a shot of the board
The attackers (my team)
The defenders( solo engine driven OPFORCE)
The mission is to place satchel charges on each of the four base gun turrets and blow them up so that allied forces are free to move in.(8 turn limit)
Rules will be Gruntz with card activation and some aditional solo rules borrowed from THW, USEME and others.
This mission (and the terrain for it ) was inspired by the VOTOMS Pailsen files manga episodes 3 & 4.
If you like mecha check them out here


  1. Sounds like a fun game. I have done a few AAR and my process varies from game to game.

    For multi-player games, I tend to take pictures here and there and maybe take a few notes during the game, but mostly I just try to write a brief summary at the end of the game.

    For solo games, I tend to take more pictures at turn end and lots more notes. When I don't have another person waiting on me, then I'm not rushed and can think about this a little better.

    Ultimately, I don't think that AAR reports need to be 100% accurate. Sometimes I will write them from the perspective of a combatant and what they see and hear afterwards can be very skewed.

    Just my 2 cents.

    1. Thats actually a very good point, before I know how I'm going to do them I should decide what kind of story I want them to tell.
      I think the charracter driven narrative appeals more to me than a blow by blow dry report and will probably be a whole lot more achievable for me to ;-)
      Thank you,
      you've already given me much to think about.

  2. Real life AAR follow a formula, Google is your friend but if you come up empty email me.

    1. I should have remembered my good friend Google, will do thanks.

  3. I can only speak for myself, but I usually take quite a few pictures and use the best ones for the AAR. The rest help me remember in what order things happened!
    Character-driven narrative have worked best for me in all but the biggest games, feels more engaging to me anyway. Hope that helps!

    As a massive Votoms fan I must just say I love your setup BTW, that base is boss :)

    1. Thanks Alexander, it's because of your exelent CotF series that I became interested in maybe doing some AARs myself.
      I actually made that military base as I was watching the Pailsen files, it's one of my favourite terrain pieces even though I usually prefer more modular terrain.

  4. I usually take more pictures than notes, with special care for events like first contact, loss of a leader (or other pivotal unit), objective reached etc. Then after the game I pick the ones that look good and do an overall narrative of the game. At times I do a turn-by-turn report (especially when it is part of a review post and I want to illustrate how some rules play out) but generally, I think it is a lot of work and -- possibly due to my writing -- gets boring to read.

    1. Thanks for chipping in. I think thats probably what I'll end up doing, take lots of pictures, focus on important events and try to turn it into an engaging story afterwards. Still thinking about using somekind of voice recorder as I suck at notes (both taking and deciphering afterwards)