Gladys and the Daisy Patrol see it through! Snow Forts gaming Scenarios

Here in more detail is a write up of the first Scouting Wide Games scenario for the tabletop: Snow Forts.

Terrain?

I don’t have snowy terrain but I do have lots of Merit plastic pine trees to make a landscape for Close Little Wars. Taping some kitchen towel on the portable hex board whitened things up as I don’t at this stage want to start painting my hexboard white.

The great thing about kitchen towel is the patterning.

A quick snow fort or two was patched together from polystyrene tile, PVA glue and cocktail sticks to peg it together.

Below: Members of red-scarved Bull Patrol and blue-scarved Owl Patrol toss a coin to see who gets to attack the Girl Scouts of Daisy Patrol in the Snow Fort.

Time: somewhere around 1908 to 1910.

In the Snow Fort, five feisty Girl Scout members of the Daisy Patrol are busy finishing the ramparts and snow windows, along with piling up ammunition – snow balls!

They are led by Gladys the Patrol Leader (Patrol No. 1 inscribed on her base) in dark blue. Gladys has a Marksman scout badge, giving her +1 on a d6 dice roll when shooting.

Dark haired Ethel, Patrol no. 2, First Class Girl scout.

Red haired ‘Ginger’, Patrol no. 3, Second Class girl scout

Agnes, Patrol no. 4, is a Tenderfoot and not even in full uniform. Blue scarf.

Brunette Daisy, Patrol no. 7, Second Class Girl Scout.

Opposing them in the distance are two scout patrols: Red ‘Bull’ Patrol and Blue ‘Owl’ Patrol.

Red scarved Bull Patrol win the coin toss for who gets to assault the snow fort. Back at HQ tent camp in the NW corner of the Wide game terrain, local Boy Scout Master Robert and Girl Scout mistress Agnes agree that two patrols assaulting the snow fort at a time may outnumber the girls too much. The Blue scarved Owl Patrol of Boy Scouts wait on the outskirts to watch the Wide Game.

Red Scarved ‘Bull’ Boy Scout Patrol are made up of eight Boy Scouts:

Patrol Leader George (No.1)

John, First Class Scout (Patrol No. 2)

Jack, First Class Scout (Patrol No.3)

Alan, Tenderfoot (Patrol no. 4)

Samuel, First Class Scout (Patrol No. 5)

Peter, Second Class Scout (Patrol No. 6)

Paul, Second Class Scout (Patrol No. 7)

Ernest, Second Class Scout (Patrol. No. 8) with Marksman Badge

Note: Daisy Patrol are named after the founder of the Girls Scouts of America, Juliette Gordon ‘Daisy’ Low.

L to R: Daisy Patrol: Ethel, Ginger (red hair), young Agnes blue scarf, Daisy, Gladys in dark blue.

Rules Recap

Each of the Defenders in a snow fort requires three Snowball hits before their ‘life’ is lost. A life can only be restored by travelling back to HQ. An attacker’s life is lost through a single snowball hit, restored again back at HQ. Movement is half Normal pace due to snow, measured with half a lolly stick. Moving up one hill level takes half a move.

Range for firing:

Close range one of lollystick, hits require 4,5 or 6 on a d6. No savings throws.

Medium range: two lollysticks requires a 5 or 6 to hit.

Long range: three lollysticks, requires a 6 to hit.

IGOYUGO – roll d6 at each turn start to see who moves first, then other side moves, first side fires first, other side fires second. No melee phase exist in this first Snow Forts scenario.

Chapter / Turn 1 – IGOYUGO

Daisy Patrol move first – they are busy building up their snow fort and have run up their Daisy Patrol flag. They make themselves busy building up snow walls and preparing stores of snowball ammunition as the Boys of Bull Patrol advance.

Coloured lolly sticks show close, medium and long range. Yellow dice for Daisy Patrol, red for Bull.

I rolled a dice to see from which area of the hex game board the Boy Scouts of Bull Patrol would move off the edge of the board from. D6 for 1-2 left, 3-4 centre and 5-6 right. They move in from the right edge, SE of the snow fort.

Firing: Neither Patrol were in Snowball range yet.

Gladys and Agnes (right) look down at the advancing Bull Patrol.

Chapter / Turn 2

The Girl Scouts of Daisy Patrol carry on building up their snow fort walls as the Boy Scouts of Bull Patrol advance from the SE.

As the Boys advance, I rolled a d6 to see if the Patrol of 8 boys stay in column together as a group (d6 1-3) or split into two groups (d6 4-6). They split into two.

Coming into range: half a lolly stick for the movement range, half normal pace due to snow.

The Daisies fire first. At this early stage only Patrol Leader Gladys the Marksman (d6 +1) is in range. She throws a long shot which misses, even with the +1 it doesn’t make the required 6 for a long distance hit.

The Boys of Bull Patrol’s eye view of the Daisies in the Snow Fort

Several of the Bull Patrol are in long range – Ernest (No.8 the marksman) and John (No. 2) both aim but miss. No hits but snowballs thudding to and throw should liven things up.

End of Chapter / Turn 2 – No ‘lives’ lost.

Chapter / Turn 3

The Boys of Bull Patrol move first, splitting into two groups. D6 was rolled to see if they will split into four pairs (1-3) or remain in groups of four (4-6).

Three of the five Girls of Daisy Patrol move towards the front of the Snow Fort for a better and wider aim, leaving two covering the back and sides.

The Boys of Bull Patrol fire first, six are in long range including Ernest (Marksman badge +1). He is given a coloured dice to pick his Snowball out. Two long distance hits of Snowballs on Gladys and Daisy, recorded on the hit charts in my notebook.

Daisy Patrol return fire with snowballs but score no hits.

Line of sight through the trees was checked where needed using my Flying Tiger / Tiger stores periscope, upside down.

End of Chapter / Turn 3 – first hits.

Chapter / Turn 4

Bulls move closer to the Snow Fort, still in fours, one four to the South East and one four to the East.

Most of the Patrol are now in medium to long range, aiming snowballs at the leading Girl Scouts in the Snow Fort. George the Patrol Leader lands a direct hit on Daisy, her second hit. One more hit on a defender like Daisy will mean her ‘life’ is lost and she must return to HQ to be restored to life.

However a single hit on an attacker takes their life – Daisy in return lands a hit on George the Patrol Leader and he is turned round to head bank to HQ. A gem marker is placed next to him.

Gladys with her +1 Marksman badge lands a snowball hit on John (No.2) and he too is turned round to head back to HQ, a gem marker at his side.

Should losing the Patrol Leader trigger a morale test? D6 1-3 run morale test, d6 4-6 carry on regardless (which is what they do).

End of Chapter Turn 4 – George and John, Two lives lost from Bull Patrol.

Chapter / Turn 5

The six remaining Bull Patrol boys move closer, some now into close range. All the Daisy Patrol girls move round to the Fort’s sides for better shots, leaving the back of the Fort unwatched.

All the snowballs of the Bull Patrol boys miss their targets.

Ginger and Daisy both aim at Alan – Gladys lands a direct hit on Alan. Another ‘life’ lost for Bull Patrol.

Gladys with her Marksman badge misses a hit on Jack.

Agnes and Ethel aim at Ernest and Samuel – both land direct hits.

Chapter / Turn 5 End – Three more members of Bull Patrol (Alan, Ernest and Samuel are turned round in the direction of HQ and gem markers added to their bases.

Chapter \ Turn Six

The Daisies do not move, whilst the three remaining Boy Scouts head closer towards the Snow Fort – Paul SE, Peter SSE and Jack E of the fort.

Three of the Daisy Patrol are now within close range, Ginger and Ethel are still in medium range. Ginger at the back of the group is doing blind unaimed lobs over the other Girl Scouts’ heads! Only Gladys lands a direct hit on Alan who is turned to head for HQ.

The last two Bull Patrol Boy Scouts return fire – Jack lands a hit on Patrol Leader Gladys (her second – one more hit and her ‘life’ is lost). Paul aims and hits young Agnes with a snow ball at close range.

An older scout from another Patrol with a black neck scarf can be seen in the distance keeping watch as an Umpire, Scouts Honour and fair play being important in Wide Games.

Chapter / Turn 7

As six Boy Scouts of the Bull Patrol head back to HQ to have their ‘lives’ restored, Jack and Paul move into close range. Paul – Moving up a level of the snow fort takes half a move. Jack is on the steep edge of the fort where the snow levels or ledges are too narrow to move up.

The Daisies fire first at close range. Ethel and Agnes both aim at Paul and Ethel’s Snowball strikes home. Paul is turned round to head for HQ, again he is marked by a clear gem at the base.

Only one boy scout, Jack, remains. Gladys the Patrol Leader with her Marksman badge takes careful aim at close range (hit on four, five or six) and lets loose her Snowball. She misses! Daisy aims a direct shot and Ginger an unaimed lob minus one on the six over the girls heads. Both Daisy and Ginger land successful hits on Jack.

A cheer goes up from all the Girls of Daisy Patrol! Victory!

The Daisies have successfully defended the Snow Fort and seen off all attackers. They give three cheers for the defeated Boy Scout Patrol, who return the three cheers.

Life and Game lost, Paul (left) and Jack head back to HQ.

Young Agnes (left) and Ginger finish off a ‘Snow Scout’ of their defeated enemies, complete with hat and scout staff.

All of the victors of Daisy Patrol and the defeated Bull Patrol meet up with their leaders back at the trek cart at HQ camp for hot chocolate and biscuits.

Post Script and Play Test Notes

Coloured dice help in deciding d6 rolls and IGOYUGO at the start of each turn – red for Red scarved Bull Patrol, blue for Owl Patrol, yellow dice for Daisy Patrol or blue for Agnes or Gladys the Patrol Leader etc.

From Scouting for Boys, Wide Games section (1907/8)

This Wide Game of Snow Forts was deliberately written by Baden Powell as an unbalanced scenario, the fewer number of defenders behind cover requiring more hits each to be killed. Siberian Man Hunt takes three hits to take down the fugitive.

Altering the number of hits on defenders required to take their life, say from three hits to two hits, would have changed the game, knocking out Daisy and Patrol Leader Gladys earlier in the Wide Game.

Adding the second Blue Owl Patrol attacking the Snow Fort at the same time, possibly from a different direction, would alter the game as well. Defenders would be too heavily outnumbered.

There is little use for movement for the defenders at the start or throughout. Maybe the defending patrol could start scattered around and head to the Snow Fort or have to add Lego blocks each move. However, not moving defenders much usefully speeds up the initial stages of the game.

A name chart and hit list helps to keep track.

How can extra RPG character elements be added, beyond Marksmanship?

Putting the HQ camp off the hex board would create a little more game space.

Trees really do disrupt aim and line of sight, so using the reversed Lionel Tarr periscope does help. I also used a thin plastic rod as a shooting stick.

In a future scenario, I will need to clarify rules for capturing and escorting prisoners (taking two scouts to guard them) back to HQ. Snowball fights in Open Country would need to be worked out, one hit takes the ‘life’ of the opponent in Open Country.

Would melee (quarter staves) ever crop up to capture a fort or base?

Overall, a short, fast and enjoyable game either played solo or possible for two or more players, clubs etc.

Future Scenarios

I would like to rerun this using both patrols attacking and a full patrol of eight scouts defending the Snow Fort.

I also am working on a Snow Forts variant where supplies of chocolate are running low in the Fort. A foraging party of two or more must leave to pick up supplies from HQ then return with them, all the while at risk from snowball attack or capture by hostile patrols. Meanwhile the Snow Fort must be held or defended by the rest of this Patrol. Out in the open, the foraging party of the defending Patrol would lose a ‘life’ if hit by (one or) two Snowballs.

Hope you enjoyed the game report – if you try the rules or Snow Fort scenario out, let me know what you think.

Blog posted by Mark, Man of TIN on 11/12 October 2019.

4 thoughts on “Gladys and the Daisy Patrol see it through! Snow Forts gaming Scenarios”

  1. I enjoyed this report! Looks like a lot of (good clean) fun. I also read one of the Wide Games manuals you posted links to. This seems a very fruitful source of games.

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    1. Thanks – I’m glad you enjoyed it too. I was half tempted to write it up as a Wizard / Gem / Boys Own or Girls Own Paper Magazine style ‘wizard’, ‘topping’ adventure. It would have lost the games mechanics element.
      I think there are lots more promising scenarios in the Wide Games handbook including Flag Raiding, the Traitors Letter, motor bandits, etc. I look forwards to marking up / mocking up some of the map scenarios on cloth. Lots of ideas … good clean Snowball fun, straight out of the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts of America (and Britain) handbooks. I can see this as a library game.

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  2. As far as rpg elements go you could add a buff or penalty to movement, scouts in better shape move further? Not that it would help the defenders all that much and would probably take away the ease and simplicity of lolly stick movement. I was also wondering if you could add a snowball production element? Assuming one a snowball is thrown some time is required to make another? Firing on alternate turns or having someone at the back making all the snowballs and feeding them forwards so some scouts can throw every turn?

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    1. Thanks – All these sound interesting ways to add complexity to the simple game or variants.
      Firing on alternate moves etc. is an interesting one although IGOYUGO gives the time to restock.
      RPG – Alan Gruber has also thought variable movement sticks as well or maybe mini scout poles – variable fitness is interesting. Again a d6 factor for the character card etc. There is also Scouts Pace (not suitable in snow and ice) where they half walk, half run to get their quicker and less out of breath. This would work – walk, then Scouts Pace – on alternate moves?
      On other Wide games, alternative range weapons are used – whiting rag balls, tennis balls and blunt headed wooden darts – often with restriction on the number carried or available.

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