Saturday, August 6, 2011

Teddy Bear Wars: Battle of Sugar Town

Lady Emma Cuddlestone-Smythe

This afternoon, my daughter, Lady Emma Cuddlestone-Smythe and I (Lord Paddington Bear) decided to test our military prowess on the kitchen table. To the victor would go the M&Ms.

"You're going down Bear!" said Lady Emma.

"We shall see Your Highness, we shall see" was the only retort that I could think of.

Lord Paddington Bear, AKA Beldar Conehead.

So I set the kitchen table with some terrain, including a couple of huts made by Gundt (the model maker, not the plush toy maker of bears), a few trees and some road sections in the manner shown below:

The field of battle, showing the Blue Bear Army of Lady EC-S at the lower left end of the table and the Pink Bear Army of Lord PB at the top right corner. Sugar Town Village lies in the middle of the table.

Those of you with a keen eye and an Old School way of thinking will immediately recognize this as the Bear version of the Sawmill Village scenario. Both armies enter the table in one of the corners and advance towards the village in the middle of the field. The village contains much needed supplies and vittles (in this case, M&M candies). The objective was to capture the most M&Ms and defeat the opponent in battle.

I offered Lady Emma the choice of armies, and she selected the Blue Bear force (24 figures) and I took command of the Pink Bear force by default. We rolled a D6 each turn to see who would move first and then another D6 to see who would get the first fire. The rest of the rules were very simple. Bears could walk 8" or run 12". You could run for up to two consecutive turns, but if you do so twice, then your bears would have to remain stationary for one turn to recover their breath. Shooting was done at a range of up to 12" (requiring a 5 or 6 on a D6, or 4, 5 or 6 at short range of 6" or less). Saving rolls were allowed for any bear that was "put to sleep" if the unit commander rolled a natural six on one D6 per injured bear. Any melees would be done on a figure to figure contact with each player rolling a D6 (with a +1 pip for a leader) and the higher die roll winning the individual combat.

Lady Emma marshals here Blue Bear army and marchs them down the road towards Sugar Town, in search of snacks.

Both forces march toward Sugar Town looking for snacks.

Uh oh! The veteran Pink Bears get caught in column by the Blue Bears, who have smartly deployed into line. Our rules allow two ranks to fire and Lady Emma won the first fire initiative with a higher die roll.

Things are off to a bad start for Lord Paddington Bear's Pink Army after the first firing of the game.

Lady Emma secures the first of the M&Ms in the game as one company of 12 bears fights in the streets while the second company of 12 bears searches for the snacks, er supplies in the village.

Our first melee in the garden of one of the homes in Sugar Town. Care to guess who won?

The remnants of the Pink Bear force hole up in one of the houses, which happened to be filled with M&Ms. This attracted nearly every Blue Bear on the table as they stormed the house and attempted to break down the door. The Pink Bears held the door for two turns before succumbing to the Blue Bears.

The Pink Bear army surrenders and is accorded honors of war. They march smartly out of Sugar Town between rows of Blue Bears.

The Loser: Lord Paddington Bear.

The Victor (yet again): Lady Emma Cuddlestone-Smythe.

The Spoils of Victory. Each side placed any captured M&Ms into their own ramikin. The side with the most M&Ms at the end won the game. You can see that it was a very lop-sided victory in favor of the Blue Bear Army.

Well, it was a total rout of the Pink Bear Army by the Blue Bear Army. Each side started the game with 24 bears, divided into two companies of 12 bears. At the end of the game, the Pink Bears had 4 alive, 7 captured and 13 "sleeping". In contrast, the Blue Bears only had 4 bears "sleeping" at the end. The Pink Bears secured only 4 M&Ms and the rest of the package was rounded up by the Blue Bears.

Now some of you might think Lord Paddington Bear let Lady Emma Cuddlestone-Smythe win, and you would be far from right. She won nearly all of the first fire initiatives on each turn -- my die rolling wasn't very good -- and I got clobbered in the garden melee and the break in of the supply house.

I am looking forward to avenging this loss in a rematch very soon. Stay tuned for further battles in the legendary Teddy Bear Wars.


  1. Reich Duke Wilhelm has envested Lady Emma into the Military Order of the Golden Crown for her great victory over the pink bear army...

  2. A most enjoyable post to read- well done Lady Emma!

  3. As I posted on EvE, my sincere congratulations to Lady Emma for her overwhelming victory!

    As someone whose email "nick" is "bluebearjeff", I am completely convinced that the proper teddy bear army won.

    A courteous loser would provide the links to the accounts of the other Teddy Bear Wars actions in order to demonstrate that Lady Emma's victory was no fluke, but just a continuation of her string of victories.

    Finally I am most delighted to see that Lady Emma has recovered from her health scare of some months back . . . and hope that we will see her take the field of M&Ms again soon.

    -- Jeff

  4. Jeff: good idea about providing the links to the other Bear Battles. I will work on that tomorrow.

  5. Absolutely charming!
    So lucky you are to have an enthusiastic 'opponent' / partner in gaming at home.
    And it's a pleasure to see Lady Emma smiling and in peak form again!

  6. Great write up!

    My daughter has been eyeing the Teddy Bear figures from Eureka for some time now.

  7. Seeing the 'dead' pink Bears all in a row was heart-rending :-)

    Excellent stuff

  8. Congratulations to Lady Emma!
    Best regards

  9. All those teddy bears dead. There must have been fluff everywhere!

  10. What a great battle! Brilliantly entertaing and M&Ms are so much more worth the struggle than any of that silly treasure stuff!

  11. Well done Fritz. A delightful report and it is indeed good to see your daughter so happy. Huzzahs for the Lady Emma

  12. Outstanding!! I always love these postings with the bear armies!

    You are a fortunate man indeed - except when it comes to capturing M&Ms....

    All the best!


  13. What a wonderful way to fill an afternoon!

    Felicitations to Lady Emma and consolations to Lord Paddington.

    Your efforts and sharing have brought many smiles around the world!

  14. Oooo, M&Ms sound really good right about now! Looks like you two had lots of fun.

    Best Regards,


  15. I'll echo the previous comments. Congrats to the Lady Cuddlestone-Smythe and here's to her continued good health! And condolences to Lord Paddington Bear (probably wound up covered in marmelade). Excellent hats, too, especially the tricorne.
    I always find these reoprts to be rather heartwarming. May there be many more!
    (Ah, the field of Mars never sounded sweeter!)

  16. Excellent report. I've been waiting to hear of such a battle. Congratulations!

  17. Clearly, the Pink Bears need to invest in new technology, going from popguns to suction cups!

    The Teddy Bear Wars are always fun to read about!

  18. Congratulations to Lady Cuddlestone-Smythe!

    I look forward to staging the same kind of game with my daughter when she gets just a bit older. Hmmm, time to start making funny hats for us to wear...

    Thank you for sharing your report!

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    Joel Houston

  20. "To the victor goes the M&Ms of war..." For Lady Cuddlestone-Smythe Victory is truly sweet! Excellent fun.

  21. It probably didn't help the Pink Bears to get caught in column like that at the entrance to the town.

    Emma's generalship reminds me of how the great Frederick won the battle at Rossbach, almost the same way.

  22. I'd come across these models (teddy bears)before, but always wondered, why would you? But I guess if you are a wargamer and have a daughter you like to get interested in daddy's hobby - its the perfect way! M&Ms would certainly help too ;-) Well Done. (my own daughter is still too young even for this trick I think!)

  23. Charming report Monsieur. Please give my compliments and best wishes to M. de Cuddlestone-Smythe.
    Lady Diana Pettygree

  24. Very entertaining, great to see your daughter enjoying the hobby, well done.