Home Forums Ancients To Ur is Human a review

This topic contains 15 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by Trebian Trebian 3 weeks ago.

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  • #126227

    OB
    Participant

    This week I got a copy of To Ur is Human a new set of rules for warfare in ancient Sumeria.  I’m quite taken by them not least because the contain an interesting new mechanism.  Anyhow I decided to review them on my blog.  If you are interested in Sumerian warfare and a new take on the same do have a read.  As it happens my primary interest in the period is in Late Bronze Age warfare and I think these rules are easily and entertainingly adaptable for that.  In short they look like fun.

    If it’s of interest here’s the link.

    https://youdonotknowthenorth.blogspot.com

    OB
    http://withob.blogspot.co.uk/

    #126228
    Mike
    Mike
    Keymaster

    How many squares would a typical battlefield be?

    I am trying to gauge things like how far light infantry move in a turn, how far archers fire and as such how many turns infantry will be shot at before they close, and how much of the battlefield that is a proportion of.

    #126229

    OB
    Participant

    The minimum you could play it on is 4ftx3ft and then upwards.  It assumes 6” squares.

    Heavies move 1 square plus another if charging

    lights 1+1 if no heavies in the square adjacent to target square.

    Mediums ditto heavies but cannot charge heavies

    Carts 1+1 and up to +4 on top when charging depending on dice roll.

    Ranged weapons:

    Javelins adjacent square

    Slings 2 squares

    Bows 3 squares.

    I’m pretty taken by it though I’ve yet to play it.  The author’s blog is called Wargaming for Grown Up’s.  I’m sure he would very happily answer more detailed questions.

     

    OB
    http://withob.blogspot.co.uk/

    #126237

    Steve Johnson
    Participant

    I’ll be playing with 10mm and you can easily play on smaller grids, subject to base sizes of course.

    #126238
    Mike Headden
    Mike Headden
    Participant

    I posted my thoughts on “To Ur Is Human” on the Pendraken forum, here

    http://www.pendrakenforum.co.uk/index.php/topic,19147.msg288968.html

    For anyone who’s interested and hasn’t seen it.

    A very useful response to my posts from the author, in the same thread.

    Growing old is mandatory, growing up is entirely optional!

    #126242

    zippyfusenet
    Participant

    Thanks for the post OB, I read your blog and the rules look interesting. I intend to read through Graham Evans’ blog and order a copy.

    You'll shoot your eye out, kid!

    #126257

    OB
    Participant

    Cheers Zippy.  It’s got me painting a couple more squadrons of chariots.  I might finally finish painting my Hittites.

    OB
    http://withob.blogspot.co.uk/

    #126263
    Trebian
    Trebian
    Participant

    Thanks to OB for starting the thread. Yes, this is the author here, more than willing to answer questions and give support where needed. What OB says above and in the review on his blog is accurate, and I can’t disagree with Mike H’s comments on the Pendraken forum (although I have explained myself in more detail, as he says, but i’m still mystified as to one of the other forum users responses). There’s more on development of the game, plus battle reports, over on the blog: https://wargaming4grownups.blogspot.com/  . The stuff is scattered over about 5 years, but it should all be labelled “Sumerian” or “To Ur is Human”.

    The rules can only be bought on-line via Amazon. They’re only £5, and are available worldwide. I’m often at shows in the midlands area, probably starting with Alumwell next year, the Milton Keynes Camapign, the two Partizans, and Hereward. I’m expecting to be at Joy of Six as well. You’ll usually find me with the Northamptonshire Battlefields Society/Society of Ancients stand. It is likely I’ll have copies with me, but you’ll have to ask as they aren’t a publication from either of those groups, so they’ll be under the table, so to speak. Bring your own brown paper bag.

    Trebian

    #126737

    OB
    Participant

    My initial thoughts on using To Ur for the Late Bronze Age are now on my blog.  I’ve not tried any of them out on the table top yet.  If you are interested in how the Sea Peoples wrought havoc or how chariot warriors were armed there might be something there for you.

    https://youdonotknowthenorth.blogspot.com

    OB
    http://withob.blogspot.co.uk/

    #126753
    Trebian
    Trebian
    Participant

    The suggestions look workable to me, and fit in with how I see late bronze age chariot warfare. Will be intrigued to read how they work out in practice.

    #126789
    Geof Downton
    Geof Downton
    Participant

    Thanks, OB, for bringing these rules to my attention. My copy has now arrived, and I’ve read through (but not played) them.

    It seems they’ll suit my purpose, in that I wanted rules where armies run away rather than are cut to pieces.

    I’m intending to use them for a bit later than you,  early Iron Age Israel/Judah, before the Assyrians turned up, so thanks also for your proposed additions, which I’ll be happy to annexe!

    One who puts on his armour should not boast like one who takes it off.
    Ahab, King of Israel; 1 Kings 20:11

    #126806
    Trebian
    Trebian
    Participant

    Early Iron Age now? Well, I hadn’t really thought about that, either. You might want to alter the “to hit” scores a bit, depending on what you think the troop classifications I’ve got map on to those you need. I don’t have a classification for warband/medium troops with javelins, but it should be straight forward enough to graft the LI missile rules on to them. My aim was to write very specific rules so I could keep it simple, and as I’ve said elsewhere they may work for some other periods, but come with no warranty (same for my suggestions in this post https://wargaming4grownups.blogspot.com/2019/11/to-ur-elsewhere.html ) as I simply haven’t done even a single game playtesting. I’m nervous about anyone thinking that they can use these straight for something they weren’t intended for, then start a thread that goes “These are rubbish because my Phillistine Goliath figure isn’t covered”, but at the same time excited by the possibilities other people are seeing.

    #126820
    Geof Downton
    Geof Downton
    Participant

    Thanks, Trebian, for your comments. My interests lie very specifically in the Bible, particularly the period of David, and as such the intimidation of  “my God is better than your lower-case god” is perhaps more important than what kind of pointy stick people are trying to kill each other with. As for Goliath, he simply confers a, let’s say, +1 advantage in the fear test, so I think you covered him well enough!

    I agree with your quest for simple, specific rules, and I think yours are more suited to my needs than certain ancients rules that try to cover everything from -3000 to +1485!

    One who puts on his armour should not boast like one who takes it off.
    Ahab, King of Israel; 1 Kings 20:11

    #126828
    Trebian
    Trebian
    Participant

    You might want to create a Lugal-like “Champion” who increases a units combat rolls. Fiddle with the fear test modifiers with great care. If you add factors directly to the Test itself you may create units that can never lose a Fear Test or never win one. The biggest modifier in the Fear Test is +2 for rolling most dice in combat. You want to ensure that the combat modifiers you give get that +2 to the right side. That table may not look much, but I did a lot of work on the numbers in the bands and the modifiers to ensure there are no certainties either way.

    Let us know how it goes.

    #126832
    Geof Downton
    Geof Downton
    Participant

    Thanks again, the “champion” idea is a good’un. I’ll fiddle, and post the outcome in a new thread, I’ve invaded this one quite enough already!

    One who puts on his armour should not boast like one who takes it off.
    Ahab, King of Israel; 1 Kings 20:11

    #126843
    Trebian
    Trebian
    Participant

    That’s the Gilgamesh idea I never used. Nothing wasted here.

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