Sunday 19 July 2015

Warhammer; Age of Sigmar Rules Trial

Myself and Ken at club on Monday had a trial shot of the Age of Sigmar free download rules from GW to see what they were like and to see what the hoo-ha was all about.

Digging out and dusting off his Dwarves, Ken had about 100 figures so brought them along in the form of a couple of clan units some Longbeards, Slayers, Miners and Crossbow, a bolt thrower and catapult.

Following suit, I dug out a 100 or so Empire figures in the form of a couple of Halberd units. Flagellants, a small unit of Archers and a unit of Knights and Pistoliers and added in a cannon for good measure to see how that fayred.

Since the Dwarves were 'magic-less' and to keep it simple to start with, I plumped for no magic as well.

The rules, over a whole four pages are pretty basic, but slighty deceptively as the Warscroll's (another name for army list) for each army actually have the add-ons which do complicate the rules a bit (but not much).

The game itself was fair enough once we got the gist of where things were on the rules and in the Warscrolls but had to guess a bit on a couple of points which didn't seemed to be spelt out anywhere (like the Rend modifier being a save modifier). It was actually quite difficult to not add stuff to the rules as we went along as they are simple-stupid almost.

The dicing for initiative each turn is interesting which led to Ken advancing very quickly until I got the advantage and got the charge in almost right across the board.

The mechanics of the game are basic and much the same as WHFB's under different titles, throw to hit, throw to wound and armour save. The difference is the 'not really unit's' mentallity and once we got this 40K/Warmahordes individual figure movement idea on board saw the difference particularly as my Flagellants first piled in to the flank (no difference) of his already engageed unit of clan warriors and utterly destroyed these in tandem with a unit of Halberds and my General, and then went on to take apart his Slayers in short order. The 30 strong Flagellant unit seemed very strong indeed.

Elsewhere there was a line of combat involving the Dwarf Miners, his general and the other clan unit vs my large Halberd unit and knights and towards the end my archers and the Dwarf Crossbows also joining the fray. My Pistoliers circled round the battle and in the end managed to annoy his artillery a bit.

The Dwarves really got hammered in the end but lasted until maybe round four or so when we called it a day with what seemed a slightly one sided battle to the Empire.

Several of the bits didn't seem very clear like how you sorted out multiple wounds from the likes of the cannon or catapult (with us deciding as per old WHFB rules with the multiple wounds affecting the units as a whole) but with four pages of rules this probably isn't much of a surprise. In fact the first and probably most of the second page are setting up the battle so really the rules are on one piece of A4.

Our prognosis of the rules in the end was that they were fair enough and also fun but perhaps a bit too simplistic and the field anything you want and just pile is very obviously aimed at a kids market. Indeed the whole concept does smack of the games we had as kids with Airfix soldiers and lining up what you had and knocking stuff over.

Not quite sure at what size of game is envisaged by the designers, as the individual movement of even a hundred figures could be quite repetitive and laborious, so maybe 30 to 40 figs skirmish size is the target, not sure here. Moving the units about old style, got in the way a bit of the mechanics of the new rules I felt.

There's doesn't seem to be anything to draw veterans into the milieu. That isn't what their about anyway, not aimed at our demographic. Since the whole WHFB thang wasn't broken in it's own terms, if we want out bring the troops out again, I think we'll stick with 3rd or 6th or maybe (blech) 8th or play something entirely different, or if you want a 40K/Warmahordes like experience, we'll play 40K/Warmahordes.

It will be interesting to see what new figure ranges the future will bring and I watch that window to see what goodies might appear for use in other things and though not a fan of the Sigmarines, I know GW are bound to bring out something good. Here's hoping for that bright spark.

Wednesday 15 July 2015

Frostgrave In Da House

Appearing through the door yesterday dropped the Frostgrave package with rules, plastic Soldiers box set, a scatter of resin 'treasure' pieces and a number of metal figures.

Always nice to get pressies in the post.

Most of the bods at the club also seemed to get their deliveries yesterday so I'm quite impressed with the postal drop that Nick at Northstar and team must have pulled off to get all the packages out on time, as I believe most bods about seemed to have got theirs too.

Following reviews (and indeed a fair bit of hype that Osprey Games seem to produce) the rules promise to be interesting and conducive to a decent campaign, which I'm always up for.

Following a quick flick through the rules and they look to be fine and very reminiscent of latter manifestations of D&D rule books in layout and indeed some of the artwork (possibly same artists) but not a bad thing there. Easy on the eye without too much clutter and a decent type face, the rules appear to be quite easy to follow.

I have been looking forward to these rules release and once digested I'm keen to get a couple of games in to see if they deliver what I'm hoping for.

By way of a bit of (really un-connected) inspiration, I have started to re-read the 'The Anvil of Ice' by Micheal Scott Rohan, the first in his Winter of the World series. Apart from being a good read which I thoroughly recommend, I chose the Enchanter Wizard for the Frostgrave start up pack and this fits pretty nicely with the Frost/Ice theme going on and the main character of the series who does a fair bit of Enchanting. Works for me anyway.

Once they've been digested and trialed, there will no doubt follow a review.

I'm sure there will be a fair bit out there in the Interblog about these rules over the next wee while so it promises to be interesting in any event.

Thursday 9 July 2015

Necromunda Campaign Round 9 - Gang Fight?

Round 9 of the current Necro Campaign and the penultimate one too.

Just my Redemptionists, Dave's Goliath's and John's Eldar were ready for a rumble on the day and we laid down equi-distantly and jumped into the action with John plumping for his favourite stand-up gang fight scenario.

John went first and deployed on a couple of roof tops pretty quickly with his snipers and moved the rest forward with a bit of caution.

I having a pretty short range of fire, going next in the running order and set up opposite the far reaching Eldar, went out for a rush to get to cover and a position that I could get some shots off as I closed as quickly as possible, going for some nice 'king-of-the-hill' cover in the middle of the table with a bit of skirting round added in for good measure.

Dave went a bit off-piste and en-masse started to circle round the outside of the table moving behind me.

Things went a bit a-wry pretty quickly for me with Dave taking a pot shot from a heavy bolter at long range at my cover rushing troops and with one shot landing and taking OoA my gang leader. Not a good start. Next when my one gang member who could take a shot, stuck his head out and was promptly downed by one of Johns Overwatch snipers, Two down.

Dave continued his move round behind my positions and the Eldar edged out a bit further under their overwatching snipers. My guys who were in reach, desperately through them selves through the nearest door and thought they were temporarily safe in the central building, and then move through the building to take the fight to the enemy. The rest continued their rush for a bit of cover and hopefully a position that they could fight back.

A Plasma grenade put paid to the idea of safety but only one of the Fanatics in the building was downed by the blast but the plasma ball prevented any further movement through the building. A sniper put paid to the downed Crusader already on the deck and then a Guardian off loaded three shuriken shots into the chest of the tail end Crusader who hadn't quite made it to cover. Bottle test was promptly failed and the Redemption left the field before the end of round three having not fired a shot. Not their best showing to date.

Dave, now having no one to circle behind, about faced and headed back the way he cam and started to move en-masse to towards the new enemy. The Eldar consolidated their gain and took up cover in the central building with a couple of Guardians and the rest headed round straight towards the Goliath's.

To make a slightly longer story shorter, Dave fed in Ganger's into the meat grinder around the building in front of Dave's deployment area, and although the Eldar didn't quite have it all their own way, the Goliath's quickly succumbed to the Eldar onslaught and with five down to perhaps one Eldar, Dave called it a day giving the Ever-victorious Craftworld Eldar the win once again.

At the end of the game, even John admitted that perhaps the Eldar were a bit too powerful and on any one to one encounter were likely to come out on top. Only when ganged up upon, have the Eldar been put to rout.

The grand finale next time is going to be a free-for-all slug fest with an extended break point for each of the gangs in a Tunnel Fight or similar which should be entertaining at least. Till next time.
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