I started playing the first scenario, Retaking Vierville, from the ASL Starter Kit 1 using VASL last night. VASL is an ASL branded repacking of the VASSAL code that already has the vmod file for ASL included. I am working through the scenario using a walk-through posted on BGG by Eddy del Rio. Its a good way to go over the rules in an in-game manner to reinforce what you have read. Eddy has also posted a walk-through for several other Starter Kit scenarios.

Retaking Vierville

Using VASL for this, at least on the Mac, is really a bit more work than it needs to be. Mostly because the already nasty VASSAL/VASL UI appears to have some bugs on the Mac that mean that you need to almost constantly resize windows after they re-open. The app appears to forget its own default window sizes turning your game windows into an unusable mess.

Not helpful

Since the point of that counter area is to place counters on the map it seems a bit odd that it would resize itself so large and then stop you from being able to place them. Thankfully you can edit your preferences to split everything up into multiple windows which helps alleviate some of the UI issues.

There are still some draw issues which mean that many of the ASKSK1 scenario setup files put counters and text outside the bounds of the board area on the Mac. Zooming in and out will solve this but its still a bit of a PITA. I haven’t used VASSAL/VASL under Windows so I am not sure how much of this is a general issue with the app or a Mac-specific problem.

While it is a bit more difficult to play out a game this way it does have the benefit of being able to be done on the couch while I hang out with Michelle so in the end its probably a better alternative :-)