Sunday, 10 April 2011

A Decision

Those of you who drop by occasionally will have spotted I dont post on RPG related matters very frequently or often.Its been over 12 months since I DM'd a D&D style RPG commenting occasionally is the extent of my involvement with D&D

The reasons for my decision are twofold -

At present a fair chunk of my leisure time is taken with running a Call of Cthulhu pbem with as fine a bunch of people as you could wish to RPG with, which more than provides my RPG "fix".

They cover our doings on their respective blogs - Daddy Grognard and Dungeonmum

I'm not one for regurgitation of others posts and ideas.

The other reason is I consider my "main" hobby to be the collection and painting of wargames minis - now I've actually got a ruleset I enjoy using this has skyrocketed over recent months as I've started work on building up the three fantasy armies I've got - Dark Elves, Undead and Orcs and Goblins.

I'm proposing to start a new blog where I can post occasionally on the above as there are always works in progress as well as the odd battle report.

I can also promote AoA while I'm about it.

To those few of you who have follwed my infrequent mutterings

Thanks and you're more than welcome on my new one - the more the merrier.

Dont use online dice rollers for life threatening rolls is my parting word of advice............B-)

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Lets see what you would have won!

That catchphrase from the old UK gameshow Bullseye sprang to mind when I sat down to type this for reasons which may or may not become apparent below.

Slightly ahead of schedule I've taken on the mantle of Keeper in our Call of Cthulhu PbEm from my pal Daddy Grognard - in itself a hard act to follow.

One of the good things about this type of game is as Keeper you can sit down with a premise - in my case an A5 notebook full of notes, NPCs and general ideas for the Investigators to discover, meet and explore and let them write the story themselves.

This has worked fine with the three players I've got apart from when dice rolls involving a secure dice roller have become involved...........had I as Keeper stuck to the results of the "dodecahedrons of fate" they'd be looking as bemused as the contestants on Bullseye who live in Birmingham and didnt win the boat...........or in game terms had a convivial chat at supper and gone home to their beds

Monday, 28 February 2011

Armies of Arcana - Second Impressions

This was our first battle with the AoA rules and in hindsight we got some of it wrong. We used the rules as published in the rulebook, not the playtest package from the AoA forum because I've not got to printing it out yet.

We decided to play till someone had to take an army break test as in the attrition scenario - 30% army losses

AoA action occurs in several simultaneous phases - none of the IGO-UGO of the "other game" - whoever wins initiative gets to choose whether to move first or second because a lot more emphasis is put on being in the right place and so forth


c2400 pts Dark Elves

15 Spearmen + Champ (with Unit)
12 Repeater Crossbowmen
15 Swordsmen + Champ (with Unit)
7 Witch Elf Berserkers
5 Med cavalry with lances
1 Mounted Sorceress
1 Assassin
1 Mounted Dreadlord ( the General)

Dark Elves are costly per figure but have a good all round stats

My mate:
c2400 pts Dark Age Humans/Hairy Barbarians

1 Great Hero with cavalry Bodyguard
8 Berserkers
8 Skirmishers
9 Cavalry with javelin
20 warriors with great axe
12 archers
40 assorted standard warriors
1 hero + 8 bodyguards (hero bought with unit)
1 Wiseman/Shaman

He didnt purchase the Sheildwall upgrade in his point costs so his guys were very lightly armoured.
The game took a while because we did a fair bit of consulting the rulebook it being our first game, though we have been playing each other for years.

Turns 1-2 was mostly movement and shadowing apart from the repeater crossbowmen mowing down anything moving around the central choke point in the middle of the table

Turns 3-4 were far more brutal!

The Barbarian Cheiftain and cavalry bodyguard had come barrelling down one side of the table (my right) in an attempt to engage my lancers but didnt quite make it.....the lancers being cunning Dark Elves dont do full frontal assaults and moved to a flanking position which unleashed the witch elves on the cavalry, effectively pinning them and causing a couple of casualties on the horsemen.

Turn 4 saw the Witch elves kebabbed by the cavalry, leaving one left, but the lancers had flanked them causing enough damage to break the Great Hero and bodyguard.
A missile battle occured between the Barbarian Archers who had made it into the wood, causing enough damage to make the DE Repeater Crossbowmen take a morale check in the morale phase not before another volley caused the barbarian archers to break and run for it.

The DE Spears moved into the central choke point where the berserkers threw themselves on the spears - the Shaman cast a fog cloud on the general area, which the spearmen stoically endured because I forgot to move them - taking no eldritch hits because they saved

I was starting to get a bit twitchy by now because there was a lot coming the left side of the table against my swordsmen and sorceress, who cast Frost Blades on the Swordsmen - this was enough to deter the cavalry they were facing off against from engaging.

Turns 5-6

The great hero and bodyguard fled followed by the remaining frothing berserker who caused a wound on the Great Hero!
The repeater crossbowmen did their thing again (something was said about emplaced Gatling guns)

The Spearmen wiped out the remaining berserks and enaged the Minor Hero and retinue. The Assassin infiltrated in the wood (ie cover)
(This caused a debate as to whether the Wiseman could drop a Freezing Fog on her head because she was now in play, but hadnt done anything, nor could she technically be seen. The way I understand inflitrators working is they cant be seen till they've done something) .She was however within missile range of the Shaman and darted him for one wound
The scrap in the middle continued with the Shaman casting explosive shards on my spearmen - who had by now taken a fair few casulaties and needed to break. The Shaman was assassinated with a further dart from the Assassin for two wounds.

The Hero and bodyguard rallied and slaughtered the remaining witch elf berserker who was technically to their front (sparking another debate could a mixed unit of 1 berserker and 5 lancers engage from the front)
We decided not so the Barbarian cavalry got flanked again by the lancers, who did slightly better this time, the barbarians causing enough to make them check morale.

At which point I'd machinegunned with repeater crossbow fire or otherwise done away with 30% of his points value, leading to an Army Check which failed, so the Dark Elves were victorious.

Next game is in a months time - in all I consider it £20 well spent for the rules and missiles are VERY effective.

I'm going to take a unit of longbows next time to see if it makes a difference. 1/2 rate of fire but longer range

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Armies of Arcana - first impressions

My Armies of Arcana Rulebook arrived this week.

So what?

This - I have a love/hate relationship with GW as some of you know and never really "got" Warhammer in any of its incarnations..........yes I've got/previously owned/read the rules! B-)

AoA is a Fantasy Wargame Ruleset which I was completely unaware of till the other week till I read Sir Larkins battle report on his blog

Things I like:

Cost £20 + P&P for which you get...........(I got mine from Caliver Books)

Complete Rules in an easily comprehensible rulebook (Colour)

Army lists (all the usual suspects from the "other game" with the exception of The Empire and a whole section on Monstrous Creatures you can have as allies) so no extortion in the shape of an Army book.

No superpowered heroes with souped up magical items (stuff like that is figured into the stats already and looking at it makes very little difference)

Mechanics are d6 based and fairly easy to get the idea of, with clear examples given

You can use whatever figures you can get your mitts on from whichever manufacturer you choose without worrying about them being "legal".

Theres even a formula to build your army to your preference depending on the figures you've got which works on a points system

No constraints on army composition apart from 60% troops and 40% elites/characters/monster allies.

Minimal "fluff" and padding - most of which is pictures of well painted Reaper and Gamezone figures.............even GW minis make an appearance.

Wizards arent all- powerful and have to generate/focus power during the game to be able to cast spells, they are also costly

Things I didnt like:

Hogmen - I really dont see the point of them.........B-)

Second Impressions will follow when I've used them in earnest, the proofs in the pudding as they say!

Monday, 10 January 2011

One for the miniature painters

Please feel free to vote in the poll opposite.

This is a debate which crops up between me and my best mate whenever beer and "little men" are involved.

It took me ages to get round to the idea of the "cool multi part plastic kit" a certain well known manufacturer is increasingly releasing.

They're even doing Grey Knights in plastic next year - who'd have thought it?!

Anyway which do you good people prefer or dont you care either way? B-)

Belated Welcome

Very shoddy of me again I know..........

A belated welcome to Paladin in Citadel

and Blighty Waaaagh Boys

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

New Year, New Projects - Targets

2011 has heralded a new painting project - which I'm fired up about - mostly because the minis look pretty damn good even unpainted.

I dislike Warhammer and its restrictive army lists and codices and thanks to Sir Larkins (again) for bringing Armies of Arcana to my attention.

I also quite like to use other manufacturers minis in my armies.........

So gibbering, staggering and drooling on the sidelines are:

1 unit of GW Grave Guard (I like these that much I might get another box) - plan to put together this week

1 lot of GW Ghouls - in box

Stackloads of skeletons - severely lacking in archers though (recommendations welcomed) of which

5 painted thus far - a mere 33 to assemble........

A corpse cart (above) - I like this as well but it might bit of overkill if I got two!

Zombies...........Brains..........20 in box

Black Knights with Wight King (who I've decided is the Big Boss) - six of thus far- mostly painted

Necromancer on Undead Troll (to go with the corpse cart and zombies, naturally)