One of the main problems I have with European games is that I have stacks of the things without English rules. This is annoying when the games look interesting (like Lieber Bairisch Sterben) but doubly so when I know there are English rules out there somewhere (eg Die Tour). Not only that, but some of the translations I have are pretty diabolical (eg Schickeria) and even fewer have translations of the strategy notes so I am also looking for better versions of existing sets all the time.
The idea behind the rules bank is to provide, initially for the cost of an SAE, photocopied English rules to anyone who needs a set. I figure that if there is a central resource to store and distribute rules (ie, yours truly) it will be useful to people like myself who actually want to play these games as well as look at them. Needless to say, I will also benefit from the service by getting access to the rules I need.
At the moment, to save work, I am not listing which rules I do have access to. Basically, I hope I have rules for most of the games currently available in the UK. If I haven't got the set you are after, and there must be several that I don't have, I will do my best to track down a set for you. If all else fails, I will add your request to the enclosed wants list for the next issue. There is no reason that this shouldn't also apply to old English game rules that you may be missing (I am looking for a copy of Subbuteo Angling for instance - seriously).
I am hoping that everyone who receives Sumo 1 (particularly Mark Green, Brian Walker, Eamon Bloomfield, companies such as Hexagames and gamers with contacts abroad) will read the attached wants list and send me copies of any English rules they already have. This should, I hope, clear most of the shortfall. The next step will be tougher as I assume we will have to rely on translations of specific games.
I know this is a long shot but if anyone feels able to do one or more translations from German or French (they are often just a page or two), please let me know so that I can co-ordinate efforts. I don't expect a massive surge of support here, it must be said. I am personally going to try and make the effort to do some of the French stuff (Thalassa to start with) but my French language ability is only 'extremely rusty' and that is a charitable summary. My German is worse, but I will try to tackle Mr. Moneymaker and possibly Coup and Ascot real soon now.
Just out of interest, my priority wish list is: Lieber Bairisch Sterben, Coup, Die Tour, Chalet, Vermogensbildung, American Goldrush, Thalassa, Wohnprojekt, Automobile fur die Welt, Mittelsturmer and Oil fur uns Alle.
Right, that's it. Corny as it sounds, this venture is mainly dependent on the readers - I can only do so much cajoling. So, if you have any of the English rules on the list, please send them to me as soon as possible and let me know if you need any rules copied. Simply tell me the title and publisher of the game, enclose an SAE and I will see what I can do. As long as I'm not away from a photcopier you should get return of post service. Well, alright, within a week then.
Sumo - Mike Siggins