A little while back I did a piece about expanding your gang within the Batman Miniature Game. This week, I’m going to take my own advice and play with some classic villains – Penguin, Catwoman and Mr Freeze (plus four assorted penguin goons) – against Gotham’s newest flock: The Court of Owls.
The Court has the advantage of being one of only two completely self-contained crews in the game (the other being Watchmen, who we’ll come up against next time). With five models coming in at under £40, they’re an interesting way into BMG and for a novice, they have the advantage that, whilst they lack cheap disposable characters, they are more durable as a whole than most, Also, it’s worth mentioning that many of their special rules are duplicated duplicated across characters.
By comparison, my Penguin crew comes in at costing closer to £60 (granted, there are models that I’m not using). On the other hand, the Court will only work with the Court, so for now at least there’s no real room for expansion (Watchmen, incidentally, are subject to exactly the same restriction).
We had a fun, balanced game in which we both made several errors (both in terms of tactics and rules), and still it felt truly cinematic throughout. I learned that Catwoman is fast but fragile, and that Mr Freeze is tough but not able to withstand a pummeling from the Gotham Butcher. My opponent learned not to underestimate a basic, cheap guy with an axe, let alone one with a shock baton or an assault rifle.
We set up a city board with a mix of my terrain, his TT stuff and other odds and ends.
Particularly wonderful to use the tower as a sniper position.
We ended up having an almighty bust-up in the middle of the board. Butcher was exposed, so Freeze tried to toss an ice grenade and missed, getting battered for his trouble.
Despite some terrible shooting, my cheap Penguin with an axe was able to take him down to the brink. The various Owls were potent, but the penguins were surprisingly durable. All in all, it was the cut and thrust of a dynamic issue – gritty gang warfare, Gotham style.
So objectively, how is the game, now I’ve played a few? Well, it’s definitely a lot of fun but it does have its flaws: slight niggles in the translation from the Spanish, occasionally tricky to find things in the rulebook, and the fact that the stat card layout could be clearer. In spite of these issues however, it feels… right. It really does make you feel like you’re playing in Bob Kane and Bill Finger’s magnificent sandbox.
Next time, I’ll be up against the Watchmen, and I’m going to play the cheapest (in actual cash terms) list I can, to see if you can do Batman on a budget.
Oh, and if that’s not all, we have a special giveaway for December. Every like, comment, share, retweet or other social media interaction will be tallied and plugged into a random number generator, with the winner grabbing themselves a Knight Models figure of the Batbrat himself, Damian Wayne!