View Full Version : BBDBA- How long does a game last?
I've never been lucky enough to actually play a proper Big Battle DBA game yet, though I have played a couple games of double-sized DBA. I am just wondering if anyone who has experience with BBDBA could tell me how long a game of it typically lasts?
Also, does anyone ever play with each command being under the control of a different player? (i.e, there are 6 players, 3 a side.) Does this work well, or badly?
02-19-2004, 11:33 AM
I've never been lucky enough to actually play a proper Big Battle DBA game yet, though I have played a couple games of double-sized DBA. I am just wondering if anyone who has experience with BBDBA could tell me how long a game of it typically lasts?There are a number of variables in answering the question. One is the player's knowledge of the regular rules and the BBDBA rules. Of course, the speed of the players also has an effect. Having said all that, there is no reason why a game would go longer than 90 minutes.
Also, does anyone ever play with each command being under the control of a different player? (i.e, there are 6 players, 3 a side.) Does this work well, or badly?We play this way. It works pretty well. However, it does seem as if in every game, you wind up either playing three "seperate" DBA battles or one of the players gets hung out to dry and never really gets into the game. In addition, the more players involved, the longer the game takes.
On the plus side, the social side of the game is usually pretty good.
02-19-2004, 12:20 PM
If you ignore the time involved in deployment and setup (which is much longer than in DBA), a game will usually be over between an hour and an hour and a half. Terrain takes a little longer in Big Battle than regular DBA; deployment often takes a lot longer because there are lots of strategic things to consider (as well as being triple the number of elements). Call it between 15 and 30 minutes for that stuff. So my estimate of game length is 1.5 to 2 hours, with some games going another half-hour longer than that.
I often play "doubles" games, where two players play one side. This works better than "triples" games (one command per person). In Big Battle commands are not usually all the same size and often not the same pip dice (one always gets high dice, for example, and one always gets low dice, unless you have two allies). This is cool, and interesting in terms of the battle, but means that one command often gets a tactical role (refused flank or blocking force) that is fairly static, with a low pip dice every turn. If you have three players, the player who plays that command may never see action, and certainly won't have the pips to seek it out himself. That can be frustrating to that one player.
As Basil says, though, the social side of the game is a lot of fun. If you've got a fun group, Big Battle Doubles is very enjoyable.
02-20-2004, 07:06 AM
I've played BBDBA doubles and quads (4 commands, 4 players per side). Doubles is nippy enough to get two games into a longish evening and with 25mm figures on a 4' x 8' table was a blast. With 4 players per side it was incredibly slow.
If you are used to DBM, then the lack of march moves can make a difference when fighting with heavy foot armies - it can take a long while to bring someone to combat if they're determined to stay out of your way. So army choice and player style also makes a difference.
02-20-2004, 10:47 AM
One quick clarification -- when I said "doubles" I meant two players playing three commands (a normal Big Battle Game, with two players). This allows you to allocate commands to people so that everyone gets something interesting to do, not like what you get sometimes when three players play one command each.
02-20-2004, 10:57 AM
Yes, that's what I meant by 'doubles' too. It works well - much better than the one player-one command model, and the one player-one-command-4 commands per side game was an experiment which failed.
02-21-2004, 08:15 AM
This is also a great way to bring in a new player.
Give the new player a command of his/her own and help or advise to some extent (for example depending on his/her level of skill point out some advantages or disadvantages of particular moves).
I have found this to be a very good way of introducing wargamers who do not play DBA into the game.
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