Sunday, December 19, 2010

Episode 44: And the Winner Is...

This week saw the end of T2HS's Contest 2010 wherein we offered a chance to win a lovely print by well-known ASL artist Ken Smith. And the winner is . . . Whit Richardson!. The drawing was random, but Whit was heavily favored to win thanks to his nine -- NINE! -- submissions on our T2HS voice mail. You'll hear one of his entries here and we'll be playing other contestant's offerings over the next few shows. Congratulations, Whit! The first runner-up, Michael Decker, get's our second place prize, but since we already ate the last can of Who-hash, we'll have to come up with something else.

Also today we answer the question posed by Germans the world over, "Vas is in das box?" by happily revealing a new(er) offering from Bounding Fire Productions, "High Ground 2". It's big. It's beautiful. It's got MAPS. Its hills are alive with the sound of gun fire. Thank you, Sam Tyson of BFP for sending us this lovely pack for evaluation. Dave is holding on to it, but Jeff has visitation rights.

And since we are always so well organized over here at T2HS Studios, we also have a nice interview with the aforementioned Bounding Fire Productions, Mr. Sam Tyson. We caught up with Sam at ASLOK. Always a pleasure.

We also cover some listener mail (keep those letters coming!) and Dave goes all Grinchy in a Box Art Review that will shock you. Here's a little hint -- stink, Stank, STUNK!

This episode aches to be taken home by someone who will love it. For sure this delightful dalliance shouldn't end up on the Island of Misfit T2HS Episodes.

Dig it!

4:14 - Listener mail
14:30 - Contest 2010 results
22:30 - Box Art Review
28:45 - What's in the Box
41:30 - Interview with Sam Tyson

ASL Open 2011 in Chicago
Bounding Fire Productions
Ian Daglish
Infinity Journal
Udo Grebe Gamedesign
The C4 Corner Cutter

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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Episode 43: Perry Tales

OPENING: We open this show with a comedy bit, as usual, but this one was submitted to us by listener, John Haughey. We perform it (badly!) here for your pleasure. Thank you, John, for the script. (Booking agents need not call.)

GAME RULES: Time for a little quiz show on the Advance Phase and stacking.  Back to some basics found at the beginning of that giant tome known as the ASL Rulebook.  Great listening for beginners and even those who think they know it all. Like, just how many SMC's are allowed in that hex with those three squads?

ASLOK 2010: One of the interview gems we snatched at ASLOK was with, the one and only, Perry Cocke.  Listen in as Perry sez a few things about ASL, it's past, it's present, and it's future.

CONTEST 2010: We have a few submissions, but can sure use some more.  Don't miss out on an opportunity to own an original Ken Smith print or the 2nd and 3rd place prizes.

16:00 - Letters
13:00 - Contest information
16:00 - Quiz Show
53:00 - Interview with Perry Cocke
1:39:15  Total Running Time

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Friday, November 5, 2010

Episode 42: ASLOK 2010 After Action Report

ASLOK 2010: What a wild and entertaining trip to ASL Oktoberfest! Listen in with Dave, Jeff and Bob Holmstrom as they debrief after an exciting weekend of marvels and mayhem. There were thrills (ASL), chills (Zombie Games), and interviews galore. Sit back and enjoy the discussion followed by an interview with ASLOK's commander-in-chief, Bret Hildebran.

CONTEST 2010: What could be better than all that ASL goodness? Well, how about a contest to win a signed, limited edition print by historical artist Ken Smith. That's right, Ken Smith who has, among other things, created the cover art for a number of ASL Journals, has donated one of his art prints ("Kollaa Holds" shown at right) to us and we're going to give it away to some lucky T2HS listener! Here's how to enter:
  1. Call our T2HS voice mail at 641-715-3900, extension 218209
  2. State your name clearly at the start of your message.
  3. Leave us a voice message telling us why you love Advanced Squad Leader OR how you describe ASL to people who have never heard of it. OR any other ASL topic is OK, too! Please limit messages to under a minute.
  4. Then, send an email to with "CONTEST 2010" in the Subject line. In the email, include your name as you stated it on your voice message.
  5. You may enter more than once. Each voice message (with followup email) you enter will earn you one entry in the drawing. No spamming, please.
  6. Messages will NOT be judged for content so don't be shy. But you must leave a message to be entered in the drawing.
  7. On December 15th 2010 we will randomly draw names from entrants to decide the winners. This drawing will appear on a later episode of The 2 Half-Squads.
  8. The winners will be notified immediately by email.
  9. All prizes will be shipped within a day or two, hopefully to arrive before December 25, 2010.
First prize is the signed, limited edition print "Kollaa Holds" by Ken Smith. Second and third prizes are yet to be determined by The 2 Half-Squads.

Voice messages become the property of The 2 Half-Squads and may be played on or incorporated into the show.

We look forward to hearing from you. Good luck!

01:00 - ASLOK After Action Report
49:00 - Brett Hildebran Interview

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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Episode 41: The Art of War

One of the joys of the ASL hobby is collecting and owning the stuff -- the boxes, the scenarios, the journals -- and part of the joy of the stuff is the art that covers it. Would it be safe to say we all get some deep-seated joy when looking at a shelf full of beautifully illustrated gaming boxes? Don't we all like to occasionally lay out our bounty on a table or the floor so we can gaze at all that beautiful war art? You don't do that? Really? We do.

Our guest today is artist, historian, teacher, Ken Smith. Ken created the art gracing the covers of a number of ASL Journals and the soon-to-be-published (we hope) Hakkaa Päälle! Don't miss this fascinating glimpse into a very interesting and often over-looked aspect of the gaming hobby in general and ASL in particular. Then be sure to check out Ken's web site and blog to see his other excellent work, learn more about his craft and perhaps purchase one of his beautiful limited edition prints.

05:00 - Letters
28:20 - Great Plexiglass idea for starter boards and overlays.
31:40 - recently played scenarios
35:00 - Book Review -- The Ghost Mountain Boys
41:00 - interview with Ken Smith

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Monday, September 6, 2010

Episode 40: Effective Shelling

Well, we've reached fabulous 40 with this episode, and we've never felt better. In fact, we're more invigorated than ever about a certain combat simulation game called Advance Squad Leader and have lots of plans for future shows. Thanks for being with us!

In this episode, we air an interview we did some months ago with Pete Shelling. We managed to grab Pete between games at the ASL Open in Chicago. We know you'll enjoy hearing from this very familiar name in ASL-dom.

We also open "the box" and discuss MMP's Blood Reef: Tarawa -- Gamers Guide. Dave enlightens us all with a stunning Box Art Review. And of course, we sit and banter in a most relaxed, enjoyable and engrossing way about Advanced Squad Leader. Gosh, it's good to hear our voices. We hope you'll agree!

14:00 - Scenario Report
29:30 - What's In The Box
41:30 - Box Art Review
52:00 - Interveiw with Pete Shelling


ASL OKtoberfest 2010
Banzai!! Magazine from the Texas ASL Group
Desperation Morale web site
ROAR web site
MMP's Blood Reef: Tarawa -- Players Guide
Games Plus

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Sunday, August 8, 2010

Episode 39: Go With the Flow

OBA example setup
In Episode 37 we presented an introduction to Off Board Artillery (OBA) use in ASL. For years the only way to learn OBA was to slog through several pages of complex rules. But then along came the OBA Player Aid, an ingenious and easy to use flow chart that makes OBA as easy as rowing your boat gently down the stream. Well, almost. If you've never used OBA for fear it was too complicated, join us as we Go With the Flow and judge for yourself.

With ASL Oktoberfest looming on the horizon, we thought this would be a good time to air our interview with ASLOK's commander-in-chief, Bret Hildebran. Be nice to Bret or he'll see you get room 1408.

We also read some listener mail, have an impromptu book report, and in general babble endlessly about -- what else -- our favorite game in the world.

Listen Now:
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ASL Module Dependency Chart
Texas ASL group's fabulous Sticky errata (look for "sticky errata" files.)
From Italy, one man's Tarawa AAR Be sure to check out the whole site. Bello!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Newbie-Do #2: Over Open Sights

If you've never played Advanced Squad Leader before, or if you are just getting started, you're going to like this episode. Today we do a thorough play-by-play of a starter kit scenario, taking you through each move and its applicable rule so you can setup and follow along. We discuss the strategy (or lack thereof!) and outcome of each move in each phase.

For this installment of Newbie-do, we turn to Starter Kit 2's scenario, "Over Open Sights" (S12), the first scenario in the set to use GUNS. Jeff takes the American side against the Germans played by our guest, Mike Lembke, and Dave acts as neutral commentator and referee. Our complete setup is listed in the table below. You'll want to have board X, American and German orders of battle and the Starter Kit 2 rules handy.

ASL Starter Kit 2 is available (as of this writing) at the Multiman Publishing web site or through Amazon (see below). Alternatively, you could setup with VASL.

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2-3-6 C MMG G3
4-4-7 D LMG A6
2-3-6 B
4-4-7 G
ART 155 A CA J3/K4 K3
4-4-7 H
2-2-7 C
4-6-7 A
ART 105 B CA N3/O4 O3
4-6-7 B
2-2-7 B
4-4-7 E LMG F10
2-3-6 D MTR 60 R3
2-3-7 A
ART 105 A CA T5/U5 T4
2-3-7 B
2-2-7 A
4-4-7 F MMG G10
2-3-6 A
4-6-7 C
5-4-6 B
4-6-7 D
5-4-6 A
4-6-7 E LMG I10

2-3-7 D MTR 50 GG9

2-3-7 C

4-4-7 A

4-4-7 B

4-4-7 C


Monday, July 12, 2010

Episode 38: Odds and Ends and a PAASL of Trouble

This episode includes our regular features plus some special odds and ends. There is also some discussion of the scenarios played. We review the Armored Force Field Manual from 1942 as well as Hampton Sides' Ghost Soldiers, a history report about Maurice Britt, and a mention of The Pritzker Military Library and it's podcasts.

We finish with an insider's listen to one meeting of our local game club, the PAASL (Palatine Area Advanced Squad Leaders). You might be inspired to start your own club and get some rookies playing ASL. CHECK IT OUT!

4:00 Listener Mail
28:00 Book Review
39:00 A discussion of telling ASL stories
52:00 History Report
59:00 PAASL "The Sounds of the Game"
Total 1:25

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Scenarios based on movies

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Episode 37: The ABC's of OBA

Summer's almost here and that means rockets' red glare and bombs bursting in air. It's the perfect time to start our summer study of Offboard Artillery, aka OBA. Fasten your seat belts for a heck of a ride as we blast off for the FFE blast area. Normally hats are not allowed in class, but for this you might want to wear your helmet!

We also take a look at Le Franc Tireur's From the Cellar 3, and MMP's A Decade of War. Then proceed to a review of Over the Battlefield: Operation Bluecoat followed by more high culture with a Box Art Review of Kampfguppe Peiper I & II. INCOMING!!!


3:30 Favorite Scenarios
11:00 What's in the Box?
31:00 Book Review: "Ghost Soldiers" & "Operation Bluecoat"
40:00 Box Art Review
47:00 OBA Rules part one
Total 1:27

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Episode 36: Bungle in the Blood and Jungle!

Honestly, there is nothing bungling about this amazing Bounding Fire Productions product, we just liked the Jethro Tull reference. Join us as we ravenously tear into this massive king of the jungle.

Follow that with an interview with BFP's very own Sam Tyson for some talk about blood, jungle, and lots of other topics.

Then, in keeping with the Pacific theme we offer a review of HBO's "The Pacific", a book review and more.

3:30 Website changes
5:00 What's in the Box
30:00 Charles S. Roberts Awards
31:30 Book Review
37:00 Movie Review
51:00 Interview with Sam Tyson

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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Episode 35: ASL Open 2010

In a classic scenario of suburban warfare, grognards from around the globe engage in a brutal hand-to-dice struggle for supremacy. It's the ASL Open 2010. We were there live covering all the exciting action.

04:00 Interview with Jeff DeYoung
14:00 Interview with David Goldman
30:00 Interview with Jim Burris
50:00 What's In The Box? -- ASL Journal 8
Total running time: 1:25:00

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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Episode 34: Wholly Smoke

The topic was too big to fit into one episode -- especially with all our rambling and chit-chat -- so this episode is, again, wholly devoted to the subject of smoke. In particular, Dave covers "big" smoke.

2:00 - Listener Mail
12:00 - What's in the Box
38:00 - Smoke Rules
56:20 - Smoke Tutorial part 2

Listen Now:

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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Episode 33: Smoke 'em If You Got 'em

Somebody’s blowing smoke and we think it’s us! In this episode we take a look at infantry smoke usage and tactics, then follow up with a short tutorial segment on the same. They say smoking is bad for your health, but this kind might just save the lives of your cardboard troopers.

We also present a product review of Le Franc Tireur #12 (revisited) and a first look at LFT issue #10, which is all about the Spanish Blue Division. Fantastic stuff!

If you don't know much about smoke rules, you'll want to immerse yourself in this one. Just don't inhale.

(2:30) - Letters
(16:30) - What’s In The Box?
(29:00) - Smoke Part 1
(1:07:00) - First-hand Smoke (a tutorial)
Total running time 1:31:00

St. Louis ASL Tournament 2010
Naval Wargaming near Milwaukee, WI

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Tutorial Photos









Saturday, March 6, 2010

ASL Extra # 11: Hart Attack

Dinner and a movie with your significant other is nice, but what would you say to a game of ASL and a movie? Awesome, huh? If you have a hard time selling the idea to your life mate, don't despair. You can live vicariously through us. Today we present, for your enjoyment, the classic World War II film, Sahara, starring Humphrey Bogart, followed by an after action report of an analogous desert scenario from the ASLUG, "Hart Attack".

It's date night for grognards.

Thanks. We had fun, too. No need to send flowers, though.

t2hs_extra11_1_thumb t2hs_extra11_2_thumb
t2hs_extra11_3_thumb t2hs_extra11_4_thumb

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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Episode 32: View from The Hill

This was a big night for us in the broadcast foxhole. We've had some wonderful interviews in the past, but tonight was something special. This time we had the very great pleasure of speaking with Mr. John Hill. Yes, THE John Hill, from whose fertile imagination sprang Squad Leader. It was an honor to have this war gaming icon donate an hour of time to sit and talk with us about our favorite of his many splendid contributions to the hobby.

Just think of how different our lives might be if not for this giant of the gaming community. Why, if it weren't for John Hill we might all be playing Candyland.

(0:00) - Intro
(11:00) - Listener Mail
(16:30) - Interview with John Hill
Total running time: 1:17

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Monday, February 15, 2010

ASL Extra #10: Red Don

It has been a while since our last Extra and it feels good to offer this one up for your approval. This scenario is from Few Returned: ASL Action Pack 3's "Red Don". It looked like it would be fun to play -- and it was! Mimicking the Chicago weather, it was a cold and windy dawning as Jeff's Russians attacked across a frozen river with Dave's Italians set to stop the onslaught and defend the heights.

So come on in and learn a few tips about how to play ASL.....or is that how NOT to play ASL?

Listen now with streaming audio

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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Episode 31: Tables for 2

It's been just over a year since Rich Spilky joined us in Episode 14: The Spilky Way, and released to the world seven excellent ASL player aid tables which he had been working on for some time. Well, the Rich is back, and this time he's unleashing nine more fabulous player aids that are sure to help speed up your play, bring light to dim recesses of The Rules, and in general improve the quality of your life. Is that promising too much? Well, take a look at Rich's work and let us know what you think. It's "Tables for 2" . . . no reservations required.

You can download all 16 of Rich's tables below
  • to download in Adobe pdf format, click here.
  • to download as a Microsoft Windows compiled help file, click here. (Thanks to T2HS listener, Paul Suderman, for his very nice work on this.)

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  • (2:00) Listener mail
  • (17:00) Report from Rich on the New York State ASL Championship
  • (26:00) What's in the Box? A nice surprise from Le Franc Tireur
  • (51:00) Tables for 2 -- Tables of riches from Rich Spilky
  • Total running time: 1:41
Pictures from the Albany tourny
Winter War tournament in Champaign, IL

This episode of The 2 Half-Squads was made possible by:
The C4 Corner Cutter
Le Franc Tireur
and by listener donations. Thanks for your support!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Episode 30: All That Chas

What better way to start the new year then by getting acquainted with a new friend? Today we welcome Multiman Publishing's Chas Argent to the show. Though Chas joined MMP as a full time employee just recently, he is a well known spirit in the ASL realm. His love of the game along with his organizational skills, commitment, and attention to detail can only bode well for Advanced Squad Leader. Is this the re-dawning of the Age of ASL?

We're happy to have an hour of Chas time today to pick his brain about our favorite topic. This interview was recorded using Skype, which has great audio quality, but we didn't have the video running so there's no peek into his office, unfortunately. Dang! It would be like looking into Santa's workshop -- only BETTER.

Dig it!

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