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Why it is better to have 5 friends than 5000 
Report from the 2nd Flames Of War Tournament held in Vršac,  Serbia on 7th and 8th October 2017.

In a way, I can say that this was actually the third tournament. But let start from the beginning. We have a small but very dedicated FoW community in Serbia. It is my misfortune that almost all of the FoW gamers live some 50 miles away in Belgrade while I live in Vršac. I have a family and there is no way I could travel to Belgrade every weekend to play FoW. Where and how could I find a friend to play with? Since I work in the secondary school as a school teacher I have decided to talk to our school manager and ask him to allow me to establish a hobby club for the pupils of our school. He excitedly accepted this idea, and told me that I could use one of the classrooms when there are no lessons there, to organize our meetings. 

Now that I had his approval, I invited five of my closest FoW friends to make a small six-man tournament in our school to introduce all my interested pupils to the hobby and show them what games of FoW look like. My friends brought all the scenery with them since I had none. This mini tournament was held in October 2015. About a dozen pupils attended and some of them wanted to start playing FoW. Great! 

Why it is better to have 5 friends than €5000

I gathered some pupils, yet I realized that I had nothing else – except for my Soviet army, of course (I play Tankovy). Asking for money from pupils or school administration in order to buy terrain, books, models, paints, glue etc. was out of the question, which is why I once again turned to my friends. There were in all honesty more than five of them who offered help and not only from Serbia but Croatia as well. I have started to receive models and books as a present “for your kids” or offer to buy them at symbolic prices. 

The following year, we had two fully painted armies, Soviet and German, three tables worth of scenery, and I three fledging players (my pupils) that could of play FoW with no assistance. Many more pupils took part in scenery building and tank painting during the year. I consider this a major success. 

To celebrate this success and to try to involve the new generation of pupils (unfortunately, the best guys have finished the school and moved to other cities to continue their education) I have made a first “real” two day, tournament in Vršac on 27th and 28th August 2016. There were 14 participants at the tournament (12 from Serbia and 2 from Croatia). The additional scenery was brought from Grenadier Games, official Battlefront distributor in Serbia, and the tournament turned out to be a quite successful. Not only did we have a great time playing the games, we spent the entire weekend together, visiting all the beautiful sites our town has to offer.

Why it is better to have 5 friends than €5000

During 2017 we made some British forces for WWII, a Soviet force for Teem Yankee, Arabs for Arab/Israeli war; we built five pieces of scenery and all that on a school teachers’ salary and a little help from my friends (as well as a lot of patience and tolerance from my dear wife and kids!) Again, there were some fifteen pupils that wanted to give our hobby a go and two of them capable of playing on their own.

…and now a bit more about the tournament itself…

This year, I decided that beginning of the October would be the best time for the tournament to be held. Holydays have long since passed, we started our hobby club at school in October and our town was liberated during WWII on October 2nd 1944 by the Red Army and Yugoslav partisans.

This time we had 22 participants from four countries (Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, and Romania). For most of us it was the first tournament using V4. Plenty of things where new, and we wanted to try all of them to see how they work now. We used Battle Plans Cards (Attack, Manoeuvre and Defend) to decide what mission to play; new Lessons from the Front, new Early War point calculation (redundant teams). We have used Big points, Small points, and Number of killed platoons for deciding who won. Generally, a couple of people that think that V4 rules are much better than V3; a couple just hate V4 and will play tournaments only because of their friends if at all; and large majority that will play FoW regardless of the rules just for joy of playing FoW and hanging out with friends. The thing with Battle Plans Cards seemed complicated at first but proved to make things more variable without complicating the game. 

Why it is better to have 5 friends than €5000

The large majority of army lists where infantry companies (in my opinion, people feel more “safe” with dug in infantry with all this new stuff going on) and only a couple of mechanized or tank companies. The game proved to be much faster since many players have finished their games in 2 hours (there was a three-hour limit for a single game) and only up to three out of eleven tables needed additional ten to fifteen minutes. One notable exception could be playing the Rearguard mission that maybe should not be played at the tournament.

Winners Circle:

The winner of the tournament was Bojan Šmidling from Serbia.

Why it is better to have 5 friends than €5000
Why it is better to have 5 friends than €5000

The best painted army award was won by Tomislav Boroša from Croatia.

Laurentiu Rusen Nicolae from Romania was voted to be the favourite opponent.

Why it is better to have 5 friends than €5000

I would also extend special gratitude to Predrag Pribićević and Grenadier Games from Serbia for helping us with the organisation.

We had tons of fun playing the games and socializing in the evenings. We received a lot of positive feedback about the tournament. See you all next year at our Mid War singles tournament, Vršac, Serbia, beginning of October 2018 with even better and more supported event!

~ Dušan Kostić

Why it is better to have 5 friends than €5000

Why it is better to have 5 friends than €5000

Last Updated On Wednesday, October 18, 2017 by Chris at Battlefront