Showing posts with label middle earth. Show all posts
Showing posts with label middle earth. Show all posts

Friday, 30 August 2013

BattleSworn - The Adventures Of The Fellowship

We played BattleSworn at the Gong Garage Gamers tonight. With two games under my belt I was the most experienced player, and adjudicated whilst John and Caesar played a couple of games.

John had brought along his Fellowship of the Ring figures, and it was the work of a few minutes to throw them together into a force:

Aragorn - Brute/Tank
Gandalf - Leader/Brute
Boromir - Fighter
Legolas - Sniper
Gimli - Brute/Tank
Frodo - Rogue
Sam - Fighter
Merry - Fighter
Pippin - Fighter

This was a combination John thought he could play and that we thought would be reasonably useful.

Caesar used my Politically Incorrect Pygmies ("Why are the politically incorrect?", asked Ralph. "Have you seen the figures?", we replied. "Oh. I see.", said Ralph, after he had as well.).

Chief - Brute
4 x Warriors - Fighters
Witchdoctor - Healer
Blowpipes - Rogue/Shooters
King Kong - Brute/Tank

We played a straight fight - ten moves (or maybe more, depending on a roll), and the side who inflicted the most casualties won.

I didn't take lots of picture - just some highlights.

Here we see Aragorn and  Frodo taking on the Pygmy Chief. They killed him.

Boromir got surrounded by Pygmies.

Aragorn and Frodo rushed to his aid.

But Kong was after Aragorn.

The Pygmy healer saved the day, bringing one of the warriors back from near-death.

Boromir died heroically. But look at all of those wound markers.

At the end of the game the Fellowship had killed four Pygmies (and got Kong down to Red - Frodo just failed to administer the coup de grace). They lost Boromir and Legolas.

In the second game the Fellowship fought some Uruk Hai. The game was dominated by two crossbowmen (Arquebusiers), and the fact that both sides had a Leader, who were often cancelling each other out.

In this picture Legolas is about to be chopped to pieces by a Uruk Hai Beserker (Brute).

The Fellowship spent most of the game hiding in a wood. With Legolas gone they had little to oppose the crossbows with, and Caesar put a lot of effort into keeping them reloaded.

The Fellowship tried to sneak around using the cover of some buildings. You can see the crossbowmen right at the top of the picture, hiding behind some pikemen.

The Uruk Hai force was:

Chief - Tank/Leader
3 x Warriors with Shield - Tanks
4 x Warriors with Pike - Fighters
Beserker - Brute
2 x Crossbowmen - Arquebusiers

The Arquebusiers proved very good, but I think our battlefield was too open, which favoured them. Boromir died again, shot down on his baseline.

As for the Fellowship, in an ideal game I'd run them like this:

Aragorn - Brute/Tank
Gandalf - Warmage/Leader
Boromir - Fighter
Legolas - Sniper
Gimli - Brute
Frodo - Rogue/Tank
Sam - Fighter
Merry - Fighter
Pippin - Fighter

Frodo's Tank rating reflects his mithril coat. If any Hobbit aside from Frodo gets killed, swap the figure for Boromir instead (the Hobbit taking his position on the field, and his wounds. This rule is purely aesthetic, and ensures that Boromir dies a lot.

Two great games. We're still not totally clear on how some of the rules work, but we enjoyed it. And there was a lot of discussion on using it for other periods as well. Next time we will have to try magic.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Gong Con 2012 - First Day: The Battle of the Pelennor Fields

This weekend is Gong Con, a new event staged by the Wollongong University Gamer's Guild. The Guild cover a wide range of gamers - role-players, board-gamers and miniature wargamers and, as regular readers of this blog know, the Gong Garage Gamers attached themselves to it earlier this year in order to gain more exposure for the group and because it's a better venue.

When Gong Con was announced it seemed obvious to us to participate, and it was a chance to showcase some miniature wargaming. We had various grand plans, and had hoped to stage a few different games over the two days, but we're a small group of gamers with limited time and resources, so we went with what we know - 'Hordes of the Things'.

For the first day we decided to pull out a game we played a couple of years ago - a HOTT game based loosely on the Battle of the Pelennor Fields. Effectively a 48AP Gondorian army faces a 48AP Mordor army, but there are complications - Gondor's Rohan allies are riding to the sound of battle, but it's not known when they will turn up, whilst Mordor's army is split in two, with a small force of Gondorians holding a vital river-crossing at Osgiliath.

Here's the table from one end. That's the River Anduin, with the ruins of Osgiliath on it. The bridge isn't there at the start, but Mordor can build it by spending PIPs. Beyond the river is Minas Tirith on the hill:

The table from behind Minas Tirith:

Armies deployed. The Gondorians have Gandalf (a Paladin), two Spears, two Shooters and six Blades. Off tale behind them are the reinforcements from Rohan - a hero general (Theoden), two Knights and two Riders. Mordor's army consists of two Warband (one a general), two Shooters, a Behemoth, six Hordes and an Aerial Hero (Nazgul):

The battle at Osgiliath. A second Mordor army is trying to link up with the first - a Hero general (the Witch King), a Behemoth, three Riders, two Shooters and six Hordes. Defending Osgiliath are a Spear general (Faramir), another Spear and four Shooters:

Minas Tirith. This resin model is the lid from a jewellery box that came with the special edition DVD of the third Peter Jackson LotR film. Minas Tirith acts as the general for the Gondorian army deployed in front of it:

We had a few minor special rules - Gandalf and the Nazgul got a free PIP with which they could move themselves or a group they were with, and Mordor could build a bridge over the river, linking the two halves of the road together. the river crossong speed was increased to reflect Mordor's use of boats (and to offset the fact that the river is quite wide for a HOTT game). The troops from Rohan rolled PIPs each turn, but didn't appear until their accumulated total was 20 or more.

Victory was purely through destroying half of the enemy AP - killing a general was inconvenient, but not fatal, whilst Minas Tirith, although classed as a stronghold, just counted as lost AP for Gondor (albeit a lot). This ensured that the game didn't end in a 'sudden death' - a useful way to play it with new people.

We played three games during the day, the idea being that people attending the Con could take part or just watch - it was really a combined demonstration/participation game. We had a few takers when it came to playing, but members of our group took part as well, offering advice and support to help the newbies along.

I didn't keep a detailed account of each game, so here are some pictures taken through the day.

Early in the first game, and already there's a big hole in Mordor's line:

A troll finds himself pinned between Gandalf and Theoden. Rising to the occasion he proceeded to kill Gandalf, having already destroyed three Gondorian elements earlier in the battle. As trolls go, he was pretty awesome:

The Rohirrim:

Orc hordes return to the battle along the road to Osgiliath:

Gondorian swordsmen face the Witch King:

Warg riders attempt to slow down the Rohan advance:

Halfway through the second game of the day:

Rohirrim are attacked by a Nazgul:

Led by Gandalf and Theoden the forces of Rohan appear to save the day again:

One of the cast of thousands. HOTT Yahoo group regulars should note: Not Green:

Mordor prepares to cross the river again:

And does so in style:

The battle before Minas Tirith. Note the uncharacteristic (for a wargamer) deployment of a reserve on the hill:

Theoden takes down the troll:

Caesar's finest moment, as he gets 14AP of Mordor's troops destroyed in one bound, including his general:

We played three games - the first went to Mordor, whilst the other two were won by Gondor. This was a reverse of our test games which saw Mordor victorious in all but one.

A big hurrah for John, who designed the scenario, made the terrain and did most of the troops as well. Caesar did some of the bases, whilst I just provided a troll and put together the playsheets and information sheets.

We were photographed by the local paper, and filmed by both local television and the university's own TV station. I think we got plenty of exposure.

Tomorrow we will be running and playing a selection of normal 24AP HOTT games, using a variety of armies designed to showcase the scope of the game.

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Goblin Horde

In my continuing search for warbands for 'Songs of Blades and Heroes' I dug out some Games Workshop Moria Goblins. I painted these nearly ten years ago:

Well, nearly all of them; the pointing chief was a bare plastic archer this morning; I chopped him up and painted him today.

Aside from the leader there are nine warriors and four archers in the warband.

Oh, and ...

... they have a cave-troll ...

I bought him about ten years ago as well. At 8am this morning he was unassembled and still in his blister-pack. It's now 4pm and he's pinned, glued, assembled, undercoated, painted* and based, although the glue on those little rocks is still wet. But he's ready to fight ...

*Painted to 'Two Foot Distance Wargaming Standard'. Which is all any of my stuff gets.

Update: The cave-troll had his fight; he was mobbed by Ratmen early on in the game and killed, without inflicting a single casualty.
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