Thursday, 30 June 2016

Mordheim Season 3 - The Witch Wood

Last week saw the second game in the club Mordheim Campaign Season 3 with the warbands following the victors of game 1, Kev's Undead, into the Drakwald Forest  south of Dalberz in search of the lair of the Witch, the remains of which the Undead had recovered.

Things begin to stir in the woods

Once again we had a full house with Andy L with his reconstituted Witch Hunter's, Ian's Dwarf Ranger's, Andy W with his Skaven, Dave K and his Marienburger's, Kev and his Undead and my own Protectorate of Sigmar.



The table was laid out with the ubiquitous woods, hills and ruins, with Witch's lair in the centre guarded by some token skeletons. This is where the target of the proceedings was laid with a treasure chest of goodies to be had, and there were a smattering of other treasure tokens around the board for upping the cash haul for everyone. The woods were also crawling with dryads, who weren't happy about the unwelcome intrusion of lots of adventuring warbands.


The Marienburgers kicked off proceedings and began a cautious circuit to their left, screened by the woods and a hefty hill and began to close on the the Protectorate right flank. The Protectorate for their part advanced straight down the middle throwing out the Huntsman and his hounds towards the objective and screened their left with their Archers and Crusader Spearmen. The Archers did get an early lucky shot off as they advanced and pinned a Skaven before they had a chance to move.


The skaven, who were a bit cornered between the Protectorate and the Witch Hunters spread their forces a bit more and keeping an eye on the WH's with half their force, spread out towards the centre and the Witch Hunters followed suit and advanced enmasse towards the Skaven at first in cover behind another hill.


The Dwarf Rangers started their slow and inexorable advance straight towards the centre and the Undead shambled towards the centre too but they strayed slightly with an eye on picking up a treasure token or two.

The blood and guts started next as the NPC activation happening at the end of each round, with the Dryads, who if within 8" of a figure would immediately attack (or random move 5" if not) and one of their number immediately launched into combat with the nearest Protectorate, one of the Acolytes who managed to survive the onslaught for now.

Things began to heat up quite quickly from the second round with the Marienburger's continuing their advance round the hill towards the Protectorate, hindered slightly by one of their number suffering the effects of stupidity. The Protectorate moved towards the objective and started lobbing arrows at anyone they could see and eventually taking out one of the skeletons guarding the treasure but despite all the PoS hero's joining in the fight with the Dryad which had attacked the Acolyte, they only managed to take one wound from the beast but it in turn managed to remove the Acolyte.

Protectorate defend against the Skaven and Dryads
The Skaven spread out and moved towards the goal and the Protectorate while playing a delaying action on the Witch Hunters who had sent their warhounds forward over the hill but some Giant Rats summoned at the beginning of the game did sterling service while fighting the dogs. The Rest of the WH's followed their hounds over the hill and joined the fray.

The Dwarf Rangers continued their slow and steady advance and began to fire off the odd shot at anyone that could be seen and took out another of the skeletons and one of the Protectorate Hounds with long shots which did indeed work.

The Undead continued their advance too while picking up a treasure token on the way, slowly heading straight for the objective.

Undead shamble forward while looking for treasure
Skaven hinding in the woods fight the WHs and PoS
Once again the Dryads move proved to be pretty decisive and obviously they were not taking the intrusion into their domain kindly. The one already in combat now removed the Protectorate Warrior Priest Leader from the fight. Another had a brief tussle with the Dwarves but proved relatively easy meat to the axes and the other moved menacingly towards the Marienburger's and Undead.


WHs charge over the hill into the Skaven

Marienburgers playing it cagey, advance behind cover
en-masse
The next round saw the demise of the Protectorate looming as the Skaven charged out of their cover and several laid into the PoS hirelings and took out the Huntsman (and grabbed the loot he had just picked up) and one of the Crusaders while the fight on the hill heated up as the Witch Hunters ganged up on the delaying Skaven and though they put up a good fight eventually went down.

Birds eye view - mid-game
The Dwarves began to close on the objective and started to look pretty dangerous as there wasn't really anyone close by to slow them down.

The Undead continued as fast as they could go towards the objective but had failed to notice a lurking Dryad nearby who would surprise them and jump out and took out a Dreg. The other Dryads combats continued and one of their number made a bee line (randomly) straight towards the Mariewnburger's.

The Marienburg Merc's calmly peppered the interveneing Dryad with arrows and took the second of their number out without pause for breath and promptly proceeded to take a long shot and removed another of the Protectorate hirelings out who promptly failed their rout test and bolted from the Woods in fright. One band down.

The Skaven move into the space freed from the PoS

The Giant Rats hold up the WHs

Look! No Protectorate.

Skaven and Witch Hunters fight it out
The Skaven continued their advance west which was now towards the Marienburger's but were now being hunted by the Witch Hunters who were fairly well unscathed.

The Dwarves now came into their own and engaged the remaining skelton in the ruins and a wandering Dryad and a fight now broke out there with the skeleton not lasting long.

The Vampire from the Undead now jumped into the offending Dryad and a tussle over two or three rounds proceeded but though the Vampire managed to knock the Dryad down he didn't get the kill.

The Undead sent out their beasties and they now took the fight to the Dwarves as they clambered through the ruins to try and claim the treasure.





The Skaven being chased down by the WH hounds turn to face their adverseries and with several isolated fights going on in the woods managed to take out the offending dogs but also lost a couple in the process. The Witch Hunter continued their chase now heading for the Marienburgers as well as the Skaven and the Marienburgers in turn were being to emerge from their cover round and over the hill emboldened by their recent successes.


The Skaven on the run from the Witch Hunters
Dwarves battle the Undead Hounds for the Treasure Chest 


The Dwarves taking out the Dryad in the Ruins and after a brief but telling fight laid low the Undead Hounds for only one loss in turn now managed to seize the treasure and the Undead continue their shuffle but their Lord locked in combat with a stubborn Dryad is otherwise occupied.

The Skaven are the next to be surprised by the Dryads as the one which had damaged the Protectorate jumped on the Skaven sorcerer and attendant, who had sneaked into the outskirts of the ruins to try and pick up a treasure token near the boundary while the others were otherwise occupied, and promptly put the sorcer on the deck.

The Marienburger's then adding insult to injury dropped another of the Skaven horde with some more ranged fire and it was the Skaven's turn to fail their rout test and leave the field.

The Witch Hunters now advanced on the Marienburger's but with the Marienburgers beginning to form a firing line on the hill and starting to lob shots in their direction and the rogue Dryad also added to their woe's.

The Marienburgers form line against the advancing WH's
while the Undead assault the Dwarf position but bounce
The Undead failing to make a dent in the Dwarf lines and having lost four or five of their number also bolted from the scene annoyingly as the Vampire was close to dealing with the pesky Dryad he had fought and finally managed to drop but not kill so was robbed that consolation.

Another round saw the Witch Hunters falling foul of the Dryad menace and some telling shots from the Marienburger's decided that caution was the best policy and beat a retreat to save further losses.

The Marienburger's try and close the gap on the Dwarves
With only the Marienburger's left to halt the Dwarves from stealing away the treasure, Dave tried to slow their progress down and a race was on for the Mercenaries to try and catch or slow the Dwarves as they retreated off the table with the loot.


End game - the Marienburger's pursuit
Two or three rounds of moving as quickly as possible while alternate lobbed shots were fired but the Dwarves slow and steady pace proved inexorable with the Marienburger's getting waylaid by one of the surviving though bloodied Dryads which made a bit of a mess of the Mercenaries for their trouble. In the end the Marienburger's were just to far from the Dwarves to start and were unable to meaningfully stop their march.

Another eventful game and the victory this time going to the Dwarves and their increased number. Their toughness meaning that their opponents were learning to give them a wide berth so are beginning to look like the band to beat already.

Ian having won, picked up some intel along with some meaty treasure, and picked the target of the next game which was to head further into the Woods and more treasure and the lair of another of the Witches Coven, rather than going back to Dalberz and aid the citizens from another attack from Allex the Necromancers minions. Which pretty much keeps within the character of his band, go for the cash.

Losses were fairly light all round with the exception of the Protectorate however, who lost their Captain, the Warrior Priest and his replacement was the Acolyte who had gone down with him, and who managed to loose an arm. That should be interesting for the Protectorate.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Celtos Standard Bearer

This is just a random figure post, but I suppose most of them are for me. This figure is from the Celtos range, Gael Warrior with Standard.





The figure has been languishing in my painting queue half finished for quite a while and on a whim, I decided the other day to finish her off as it were.











A simple enough figure, but as with most of the range, quite pleasing on the eye.





Having completed this one, I might actually get round to painting the other thirty or so companion figures that I have still languishing in my lead pile. Maybe.

Monday, 6 June 2016

Terrain Boards Continued - Side 2


Following on from the previous installment on the Terrain Boards experiment, I have now completed the reverse side of the boards, which strangely was the instigation of the project but I ended up doing this last.


As reported last time I was using the Heroic Maps 'Frost Ruins' tile set which was available fairly cheaply through the usual download sites and I had printed out the 50 or so pdf sheets on to card and then cut the individual sheets out roughly and then proceeded to trim each sheet to match its neighbours. Starting in the bottom right corner and sheet no 50 (for no real reason as it didn't seem to matter which corner to start.


As I have mentioned before this tile set includes a reasonable (and luckily consistent) overlap on each sheet, so to make sure each sheet matched its neighbour before gluing I had to check the alignment of each sheet prior to cutting. Most of the time this was pretty easy as most of the sheets have a paved 'grid' as part of the design so this was easy to follow for cutting but the occasional sheet had to be aligned with its partners and cut lines marked to suit.

Once trimmed to size, each sheet was glued to the mdf base board using spray adhesive.

The exercise was pretty laborious but otherwise pretty easily accomplished, and once all the sheets were glued the two 4' x 2' boards were separated by the skillful use of a very sharp knife. The boards then had a run of black tape run around the edge to protect the exposed card edge from future damage.


As the tile set produces a 53" x 53" finished area, there was a cards width at one end spare and a half length cards worth trimmed from the top giving a reasonable amount of 'spare' feature. This spare material will be used to decorate some polystyrene blocks to produce some raised base area's for a bit of vertical interest to the terrain layouts available, always nice for a skirmish layout. I'll post on how these turn out once completed soon.











Again, as with side 1, the experiment can be deemed a success in that the whole exercise has produced two usable base terrain layouts but with a fair expenditure in time and hasn't produced an exceptional saving in cash, so for the difference, next time I would probably go with the bought gaming mat option.

My next venture into gaming boards is going to be in the realm of modular terrain boards , a terrain project I have been itching to do for quite some time. More on that hopefully soon.

Monday, 30 May 2016

Warhammer 8th; Empire vs Chaos


A bit of a change for last weeks club game, with Ian and myself at a loose end and looking for a game I had proposed a game of Warhammer as I hadn't played WHFB in an age, well approximately three years, and had been toying with the idea of having a game of 6th edition. 6th Ed. being where I had enjoyed the game the most, and also because I had had most success with a roughly 50/50 success rate. (post 6th Ed I don't think I'd won a game).

As things turned out, neither myself or Ian could put our hands on the 6th Ed rules or Army books so we ended up playing 8th Edition instead.

We both threw together a 2000pt army and had at it with Ian getting the initiative and rocketed his forces on his left flank across the table.

Chaos goes first and romps across the field
The Empire followed suit and launched their forces towards the oncoming Chaos troops with their left flank circling wide to counter the Marauder cavalry circling there.

Ian launched his Khorne Berserker types at the centre of the Empire line and was met by a like number of Empire Flaggellants who true to type immolated half their own number and the other half got cut down without as much as a waving of a flail. The regiment of Swordsmen with Wizard in tow promptly failed a panic test and re-roll and fled from the field without as much as a wave good bye.

The Empire Knights with General commanding moved in to plug the gap. Meanwhile the Empire Pistoliers took the Marauder cavalry to bits  and the Chaos Knights took a while and circled round the far flank.

The wheel begins to turn as the lines begin to flip 90 degs

The Chaos horde approaches

Things began to get a bit more interesting from here on, with the Berserker types tackling the Empire Greatswords with Battle Standard and getting cut to shrebbins and the large unit of Chaos Warriors and a Chaos Spawn got locked into combat with the Empire Knights and the Knights got the better of the combat and took out the Chaos Spawn. The Pistoliers saw off the last of the Marauder Cavalry who as a last ditch attempt to slow the tide charged into the Greatswords and got cut to bits but stopped the Greatswords from joining the fight with the Chaos Warriors. The Regiment of Halberdiers with a Warrior Priest in the ranks charged into the large unit of Beastmen and this saw the Beasties breaking and running for the hills though they did rally and edge back into the fight. The Empie Cannon now also played its role and began to snipe at the unit of Chaos Ogres who had run over the Hundgunner detachment and were beginning to circle round behind the Empire lines followed by the Chaos Knights who had finally reached the other side of the field.

Through out the on going proceedings the Chaos Wizard threw some decent spells about and the Warrior Priest dispelled a fair few and beefed up the Halberdiers in return but the magic was reasonably low key through out the game but may have been different had not the Empire Wizard fled the field early doors.




Now both sides had some losses with the Chaos Ogres getting whittled away, The Empire Knights getting beaten in combat through resolution bonuses even though the forces of Chaos failed to dent their Full Plate armour save and even with the re-roll again the Empire Knights with General fled the field in one mighty gallop.

The Empire Halberdiers with Warrior Priest charged the Beastmen again and they broke and routed off the table and the Halberdiers  turned around to look for new enemies and the Chaos Warriors managed to charge the flank of the Greatswords with the surviving Chaos spawn but the stubborn greatswords held out heedless of their loses.

In the end we ran out of time with more than six turns played and no clear winner on the points view (though I think Ian may have had a slight advantage here) we declared the game a draw.

End Game
A fun game and certainly more evenly matched than most of the past WHFB I've played recently. We both missed a few special rules at critical points, mainly me with the Hold The Line rule for my Swordsmens panic test, but we played through regardless and didn't get too hung up on the niceties so probably the game was all the more enjoyable for that. We may dig out the 6th Ed rules for another go in the near future.

Friday, 27 May 2016

Mordheim Season 3 - The Burning of Dalberz

Last week saw the kick off game of our next Mordheim Campaign 'The Season of the Witch' and the on-going struggle to defeat and bring down the Necromancer Allex and his nefarious schemes.

The last season saw the bands bring fire and sword to the Necromancers door and dashed his schemes but Allex himself managing to escape and no one being able to claim ultimate campaign victory.

So with a new campaign and fresh meat for the slaughter all were lined up the the inaugural fight fest in the recently rampaged town of Dalberz where the Allex's minions had laid waste to the town. With the towns remains burning and bands of Flagellants roving through the smoking ruins the new bands of adventurers entered the fray in search of the remains of a witch who had fallen during the previous raid, hopefully to gain intel as to the location of Allex and his hideout.

Everyone engaged as combats heat up.
Showing up for the first battle of the Season were myself with the Protectorate of Sigmar, Dave K and his Marienburger's, Andy W and his Skaven horde, Ian and his Dwarven rough-riders, Andrew L with Witch Hunters and Kev and his Undead throng.

The usual random deployment around the table things kicked off almost immediately with the Marienburger's and Skaven coming on right beside each other and they had at it almost immediately and slogged it out for the whole proceedings.

The Witch Hunters moved on to the field near the Dwarves and proceeded to move directly towards them with the Dwarves coming on in one corner and hemmed in by the Witch Hunters and Protectorate, they felt a bit 'cornered' right from the start.

The Protectorate not wanting to engage a healthy Dwarven warband to start with and otherwise a bit out of things proceeded to move through the grave yard using any cover available and headed towards the Undead who were set up opposite the Witch Hunters but otherwise apart from the other warbands so were free to move into the flaming ruins and proceeded to start to hoover up treasure tokens and picking off a couple of wandering wild Flaggellants without hindrance.


While the Marienburger's and Skaven beat each other to a pulp, the Witch Hunters gathered their forces and charged pell mell into the Dwarves and almost immediately stalled with the Dwarven toughness proving a match for the Witch Hunter Hounds and Flagellants.

The Protectorate moved forward keeping together and advanced towards the Undead who were moving out into the open but partially screened by the burning pyres in the middle of the town. A couple of the Witch Hunters Hounds pounced on a lone Flagellants and having dispatched him, decided to move on and attack the Protectorates Hunter & Hounds who were swinging wide to flank the advancing Undead.

Marienburgers and Skaven continue their vertical
fight in the ruins
The fights continued for the majority of the game with the Skaven and Marienburger's fairly quickly taking each other to break point but miraculously each successfully passed numerous leadership tests with neither wanting to cede victory to the other such was the closeness of the combat.

The fight between the Witch Hunters and Dwarves was less even however and though the Hunters succeeded in temporarily dropping a couple of the Dwarven crew they didn't manage to take any out until near the end.

A few random Flagellants made an occasional appearance, mainly towards the end of the fight but didn't prove to be much of an issue to any one other than provide an additional XP or two.

The Witch Hunters wilt while the Undead and
Protectorate close
As the end approached the Skaven and Marienburger's both quit the field simultaneously while the Witch Hunters went down to a man (and dog) in what was a very nasty last round for them as half the band was taken out by a combination of Dwarves, Flagellants and the Protectorate all causing casualties before they could rout.

The Dwarves having taking two of their eight number in losses quit to conserve their numbers, leaving the Protectorate to weather the Undead onslaught. the Fear causing minions on the charge were enough to blunt the Protectorate's counter and though the fight lasted two or three rounds, the last of these was pretty painful as five of the Protectorates number went down to a response of only one of the Undead horde, though as Kev pointed out his Vampire (easily the most powerful figure on the table) failed to make as much as a scratch on his opponents.

The Skaven & Marienburgers slog it out taking each
other out the fray
With the high losses the Protectorate fled the field leaving the Undead the victors on the field and when the tokens were checked as to who had recovered the Witches remains it proved that the Vampire had picked up the intel and so gave the first round victory to Kev's Undead. Perhaps a portent of what is to come?

A very protracted and bloody start to the new campaign with everyone lasting to what proved to be a more than 8 turn game, pretty astounding it itself. A good start to the campaign and with the victory going to the side of evil, the next game moves into the Drakwald Forest to root out the lair of the deceased witch to hunt for clues and booty and the good guys trying to stop the evil sides bands from gaining power. 

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Dux Britanniarum Campaign - September 565 AD

My penultimate game of the campaign season was due to be played a week or so ago and just as I was preparing to raid one of my neighbours, I was raided myself by some scruffy Saxons from far off land, down the coast. 

Andy W and his Saxons had the campaign season initiative from last month and having not been around these parts before had decided to attack my Cenel Loarn Scotti (who were ignominiously last on the initiative), heh ho.

Having not played the raid the Church scenario, we plumped for that and Andy as the attacker set up his forces and got a good three move lead with some decent move throws to start.

I got a good starting force throw and got my three Raider Infantry Groups and my Skirmishers on the table to face the on coming tide of Saxons.

Positions at the start of the fun

So 'having at it' in the first couple live rounds, the Saxons moved forward with one group of warriors heading for the church and the rest their Warriors and Elites began to form up adjacent to the church and link shields, while their Missiles and Skirmishing types kept an eye on their exposed flank.

The Scots Warriors, hemmed in slightly by the woods moved slowly forward and formed up facing the Saxon Warriors while the Skirmishers skirted the woods and moved towards their opposite numbers. They were then followed by the remaining Scots forces who entered the board behind them and the Scots Cavalry and Missiles skirted wide and began the long march round towards the flank of the Saxon Raiders.


The troops line up and face each other before the clash
The way the draw fell, the Saxons got the charge in first and though they had the 'advantage' of the charge with a Carpe Diem card etc. the number of dice was pretty equal in the clash and the dice were pretty equal in the first result, but on the second melee of the round the Scots got the better of it and forced the Saxons to back off but both sides had a couple of losses and a stack of shock each.

While the Warriors on both sides recovered their breath and dressed their ranks, the skirmishing types maneuvered round each other and the Saxon Missiles took some shock from the Scots and were then ridden down along with their Skirmishing brothers by the Scots Cavalry as they circled round to the rear of the Saxon forces.

The Scots Skirmishers were in turn run down by the group of Elite Warriors Andy had positioned to guard his left flank. These in turn lost a couple of Warriors to fire from the Scots bowmen.


The end is nigh
By this time the Warriors facing each other had girded their loins once again, and it was the Saxons that got the draw again and once more charged in to try and force the issue before the Scots Cavalry hit them  in the rear. Unfortunately they faired even worse than they had the first time and failed to dent the Scots lines and with the Scots Cavalry skirmishing from the back and the Scots Warriors in front, and entire line of Saxons went down including their Lord and a lesser Noble in what proved to be the decider of the game.

With the bulk of the Saxon force down or out and Andy only having successfully managed to get one loot token so far in the proceedings, and the looting Warriors about to be surrounded in the church, the Saxons legged it, giving the Scots another 5 point victory.

A another pretty good game and reasonably balanced this time, with the random elements not taking too much from the game. The dice in the melees definitely going the Scots way which was nice.

Sunday, 8 May 2016

Carronade 16 - Show Reportage


Another Club Annual Show, Carronade 16, successfully delivered yesterday and with all numbers (visitors, Club Games, Traders and Painting Comp Entries) up slightly on last year, a bit of a landmark too.

From reports so far, everyone involved enjoyed the day and Traders enjoyed a brisk trade over all.

With the Carronade formula now run-in as it were, the Club Bods have been looking for ways to improve the mix and a number of tweaks were added to help the flow of the day and hopefully make the event more enjoyable. A simple one which though unassuming, caused a bit of comment was the handing out of pre-cut 'chits' on entry (supplied by Warbases) and stamped with the Carronade 16 mark. A nice reminder of the day, and could easily be used as a figure base if required.

The weather was reasonably kind and not too hot, and not too cold so just right and the usual fayre of filled rolls, pie's, sausage rolls, burgers, tea, coffee etc available to nosh on and though not startling was edible and filling and certainly did a brisk trade so couldn't have been too bad.

Parking was noted to be a slight problem fairly early in the morning but passable though there isn't much that could be improved given the limitations of the site but extra parking was available nearby.

There were as I said an increased number of Clubs and Traders putting on games this year and overall a very good standard with the participation games getting a lot of, well, participation particularly. Though nothing really shouted out at me personally, perhaps due to the quick run round the games to check what was on offer, there were several which did catch my eye either because of the modelling involved like Anvil industries promotional game and the Escape from Goblin Town terrain, or the couple of games fought out on snow covered battlefield which were particularly eye catching, Kirriemuirs' Battle of Gaugamela was pretty too but I would have liked to see this one move a bit. The TWSCB ECW game was pretty and action packed too and winner of Best Demo Game.

Anvil Industries Promo Game
Mad Max action
Frostgrave I presume?



Suitably sweeping Naval

Battle of Gaugamela













Escape from Goblin Town











































Not sure which game this is but interesting


















ECW always good for spectacle
TWSOCB - Winners of Best Demo Game

Blue's Bears WWII Air Combat













Nice terrain, Batman this time




Custers Last Stand - Winner of Best PP Game

The painting competition was well attended this year and the number of entrants in all categories (except the Juniors) were up and the standard of entrants was excellent.


Single Fantasy Figure Entries

Fantasy Unit

Historical Unit and Single Figure

Fantasy Unit

Fighting Unit

Club Open Category

Historical Unit Entries

The judges (with thanks to Martin of Warbases and Wayne of Wargames Illustrated for their difficult task) had a difficult and much time consuming task of deciding the winners.

Club Winners

Fighting Vehicle Runner-Up

Fighting Vehicle Winner &
Best In Show Winner

Single Fantasy Winners

Fantasy Unit Winners

Junior Category Winners

Historical Unit Winners

Historical Single Figure Winners
Overall another good, if tiring day and lots of bods went home having put another show to bed. Next year, onwards and upwards.
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