Thursday, 23 May 2019

2019-05-22: Age of Fantasy Skirmish, 2nd Game


With short notice, I managed to get a Wednesday gaming appointment with Emil, a former workmate who has a taste for fantasy and sci-fi, and we played the same 150 points forces used by Ulolkish and me Monday.

We rolled up 3 Objectives, and I won the Roll-off and thus the initiative for the first Round.

In all the mayhem and excitement, I forgot to take pics after Rounds 1 and 2, but my plans worked fine, as my Necromancer actually raised some Zombies... 😏

The Gondor archers managed to take out two Skeletons in cover at one point in Round 2 or 3, and all in all the dice were behaving less stubbornly than usual.

The raised Zombies worked a treat, blocking the Gondorians from attacking the Necromancer and guarding the Objective on my left, while my Skeleton Horseman swept around the entire battlefield to threaten the Objective in the far tower ruin.



ON Turn 4, another mob of hungry shamblers clawed their way out of the ground near the threatened objective on my left, and effectively decided the game for me. Below is the final lay of the land, the game ending 2-1 in favour of Argonor.


Conclusion:

I like this game very much! It is simple, fast-flowing, and a newcomer can pick up the rules along the way while playing.

Wizards are very powerful in small games, being able to cause a lot of turmoil with their spells. Next game I shall turn up to 200 or 250 points, and maybe I shall build another Lord of the Rings themed warband to face off against the Gondorians - Mordor Nazgûl and Orcs, or Haradrim could be interesting choices.

I have repaired my two Knights of Minas Tirith (painted for Battle Companies years ago, and shattered when a box of (painted 😡) minis tilted over and hit the floor) - at least I hope the one with a horse's broken leg will prove well enough welded by the Poly Cement; the other one, a conversion, just had to be glued to the horse. I also may opt to field a Boromir, Captain of the White Tower, as a Hero alongside the Knight of Dol Amroth.

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

2019-05-21: God of Battles, Undead vs Chaos


I actually anticipated playing against Kevin's Greenskins today, and had built my army accordingly, but he brought a Chaos Demon army built on the T'lekkan list. It is always nice to see a new painted army on the table, and as it were, the tactics I built my army for somewhat succeeded!

Kevin postioned his units fairly evenly over the width of the table, apart from the Behemoth (Greater Demon of Slaneesh?), a hulking Enormous monster capable of taking on entire legions on its own, as it would turn out, which was placed on his extreme left flank, just opposite my Camp. I concentrated my relatively few infantry units near my camp, and left my Blacksoul in a Chariot and my Knights to covering most of my table edge.

On Turn 1, my Knights and Chariot sped forward on my left, hoping to hit the Demons' apparently weak flank.


On Turn 2, Blacksoul in the Chariot despatched a Demon unit. The Behemoth strode steadily forward, while I pulled back my defensive line a bit to stall the inevitable clash.


Turn 3, the Behemoth destroyed a Skeleton Horde, while my knights got mauled by something unnatural... Another Skeleton Horde drove some Demons into the woods.


Turn 4. The Behemoth destroyed another Skeleton Horde.


The remaining 3 Knights were wiped out, and my Blacksoul went in with a vengeance.


Turn 5, my Camp Followers beat off a Demonic attack, and my Chariot burned the enemy Baggage Train - but the Behemoth destroyed the 3rd Skeleton Horde and broke my army. For the first time ever, my Necromancer had to flee the battlefield...



Conclusion:

The Lords of Undeath severely lack some big nasties like the ones that can be fielded my many other armies. I may have to give up using my Necromancer, and instead field another Chariot for chasing soft targets, while my buffed up Blacksoul tries to keep check on any biggie fielded by my opponent. I must say, I dislike this kind of meta game decisions; a points based battle/war game should allow you to build an army to the same points value as your opponent, and then be able to take on whatever he used his points on.

Oh, well, it's all fun and games...

2019-05-20: Age of Fantasy, First Game

An entire table of Ziterdes ruins!
Ulolkish and I played the standard basic game with the recommended starting forces of 150 pts. each, and rolled up four objectives to place on the table.

The Mortal Gods bases are just for convenience, as most groups are 3 strong.

In all my eagerness, I forgot to take a photo of the initial setup, but it was pretty straightforward. I won the roll off, chose table edge, and moved first on the first Round.

In the first couple of Rounds, we forgot to make Fear Tests when my Undead came into contact with enemies, but all in all we rather quickly got to grips with the rules (especially considering we just played four hours of God of Battles).

I very quickly seized 3 of the 4 objectives, while the last one was contested.

The Necromancer tried raising some Zombies, but without any luck.


Skeleton Horsemen apparently are made of glass (or very brittle bone) - after killing one Gondor Fiefdom Warrior off at impact, my lone rider hit the dust. Argonor kept muttering incantations, but nothing happened...


I managed to seize the fourth objective, but was about to loose the one in the center of the board.


Which happened soon enough. My lacking ability to roll more than 2 on a D6 still kept Argonor from bolstering the ranks of the Undead with some not so fresh meat.


On Round 4, a lone surviving Fiefdom Warrior leapt for the objective on my far right, and managed to seize it - and Argonor finally succeeded in summoning a bunch of Zombies, which kept the objective in the building on my left from being taken by some Warriors of Minas Tirith.


End Score: 2-2 - a fitting end for our first foray into One Page Rules!

I showed OPR Grimdark Skirmish to Ulolkish afterwards, as I think it quite possible that we might dust off some of our old W40K minis for a scrap now and then, knowing we can set up and play a game in less than 1½ hours, and he seemed to agree.

Monday, 20 May 2019

2019-05-20: God of Battles, Undead vs Dwarves


Some might say I am a bit of a masochist, as I keep inviting Ulolkish  to play his Dwarves against my Undead, but we still had some house rules playtesting to do, and it feels appropriate to keep testing with the same two armies.

This time we tested this:

Pushbacks

When a melee has been fought (both sides having attacked), the unit inflicting the most casualties is the winner of that combat.
When two Formed Units (or a Formed Unit and a Tenacious Loose Unit) are fighting, instead of being locked in place until one is destroyed, use the following:

The winner decides if if he wants to Push Back the loser. I he does not decide to do so, the units remain in place. If the winner decides to Push Back, the loser is moved 4 inches directly backwards, and the winner is moved forward and placed in contact with the winner.

and:

Necromancer

When the top card of the Power Deck is flipped to attempt Raising a skeleton, if the card flipped is not of a value sufficient to raise the type of skeleton the Necromancer wishes, the Necromancer may play additional cards from his Power Hand, as if powering a Miracle.
The combined Power Value MUST equal or surpass the points cost of the target unit – for instance, you must have a combined value of at least 12 to raise an Undead Knight, although an unmodified flipped ‘10’ is enough for raising any kind of Undead model. (This part we introduced in our last game, and we have decided to keep it.)

Raise Dead

As we do not feel the Necromancer's innate ability, even with the above augmentation, to raise 1 Skeleton whenever one or more enemies are slain is providing a proper necromantic feel, we now introduce a new Necromancer Miracle:

Raise Dead
Target: Friendly eligible Undead Unit (see Effect)
Cost: 10
Effect: Raise 1 Guardian of Midnight, OR 1 Undead Knight, OR up to2 Skeleton Warriors, OR up to 3 Skeleton Archers, OR up to 4 Skeletons (Horde) and add them to a unit of the appropriate type which has suffered casualties (it may not exceed its original size).
Duration: Instant


The Necromancer may choose this Miracle to be part of his Miracle Hand, but by doing so he forfeits his right to discard one of the Miracle Cards he then draws to complete his hand. If it is not chosen in advance, it is shuffled with the rest of the Miracle Cards, and may be drawn at random like the rest of the Miracles.

The first turn saw steady advance by both armies. My Chariot and Guardians of Midnight were kept behind the flanks for now.


Turn 2, the battle lines closed in. My Skeleton Warriors took position on the hill on the left, while the Dwarven Miners passed my line.


On Turn 3, battle was joined, and the Miners surfaced in contact with my Baggage Train. My Chariot sped towards the enemy Camp.

On my extreme right my Skeleton Horde was getting hammered, and Argonor was Raising Dead like a madman to keep the unit on the battlefield.



On Turn 4 a Skeleton Horde with a Blacksoul charged the Dwarven Archers. The red dice hit on 3+, the white on 4+. This kind of dice result is not even a rare occurrence when I play wargames.

The Miners sacked my Baggage, and my Chariot moved into contact with the enemy Camp.

All over the front, my Skeletons were crumbling in droves, and my Necromancer had all but depleted his Divine Goodwill (Sacrifice Cards).

Only 4 points lost out of the 52 on the table, but almost all my units were closed to being wiped out by now.

At least, I had inflicted some casualties, and even had raised some Skeletons from the slain foes...


We did not complete Turn 5 - just for show I sacked the Dwarven Camp, but there was not much doubt that my army would break, this turn or the next, and that I could hardly hope to do any significant damage to the enemy Main Force with my decimated units. Thus, we noted this down as another Dwarven victory, and sat down to evaluate the House Rules tested.

We felt that the pushback rule needs a Morale Test for a unit to avoid pushing on when winning a combat. The test should be taken at ML -2 or -3 to make it possible even for Unbreakable units to get 'drawn out' and exposed to flank attacks and the likes. This will be tested the next time we play.

The Raise Dead Miracle worked very well. It did not upset balance, because there is a trade-off to be paid in Sacrifice Cards, and thus in effectiveness when it comes to using other Miracles and dispelling enemy Miracles.

We kind of felt that not being able to discard a Miracle to see if the Necromancer can get a more interesting one is too restrictive, and I gave it a lot of thought how to change it, without making the Necromancer too powerful.

What we agreed to try is a 5 points Rod of Resurrection working the same way as the Raise Dead Miracle, still being powered by Sacrifice Cards, but usable as many times during the Necromancer's Activation as he can pay the 10 Sacrifice pips.

With this, the Necromancer will draw Miracle Cards as normal before the game, and being able to discard one he does not want. I may even get my cold prying hands on one of the destructive Miracles some time...

Sunday, 19 May 2019

3D-Printed: Dragon Egg

The last week, I have been printing a couple of gift boxes in the shape of dragon eggs as seen in the Game of Thrones TV show, as I wanted to use them for delivering our presents to the two youngsters whose confirmations we attended this weekend (one Saturday, one Sunday).

Of course, my printer had to act up, causing me a lot of grief and wasted filament, until I figured out what exactly was wrong and could mend it.

But I managed to finish the last bottom just in time for today, and we could fill up the egg with Magic the Gathering booster packs for the son of one of my old friends (yesterday was the daughter of an even older friend who wished for funds for buying a parrot).

Both parties well finished, my printer is now building mortal Gods style bases I am planning to use for One Page Rules Age of Fantasy Skirmish (as well as Mortal Gods/Mythic), as it also uses 3-man groups of many troop types.

Saturday, 18 May 2019

Some 3-Man Sabots

The relatively new 'Mortal Gods' game is using some special 3-man bases, and of course, somebody has made 3D-printable versions. Mortal Gods use minis based on 25 mm bases, and as I base most of my minis on 20 mm washers, I had to re-scale the file to 80% to make it work.

As you can see below, the re-scaled sabot base fits like a glove for my 20 mm based minis.

I am probably going to get Mortal Gods, or the fantasy version 'Mythic' at some point, but I am printing the bases for One Page Rules Age of Fantasy Skirmish, where most bread-and-butter troop types come in groups/units of three, so these are actually perfect for that game, too.

I am going to print some round 'light troop' 3-man bases, too, but right now I focus on the triangular 'formed up' bases, as I need six or seven of those for my first test games of OPRAoFS, the first hopefully occurring Monday afternoon. Well, 'need' is probably an exaggeration, as the minis in a group just have to stay within a certain distance, and moving three minis at a time is not that big a deal, but printing some bases fitting for the game is just too big a temptation, as it instantly means some extra geek points! 😆


Friday, 17 May 2019

Preparing Some Ruins


I have managed to get two ('two' seems to be the theme of this post) gaming appointments for after the weekend (Monday GoB. 40 points, at 10 a.m. with Ulolkish, possibly followed by a quick tussle using the above and additional buildings, and Tuesday GoB, 36 points, at 6:30 p.m. with Kevin, where I shall try using my Army of Darkness just a tiny bit more effectively that the last time, and possibly also introduce him to AoF), so earlier today I was rummaging around in the garage attic to alter the table for GoB, and set up a secondary table for Age of Fantasy, as we are to be away most of both Saturday and Sunday for two seperate confirmation celebrations.

I have had these two two-part Ziterdes ruins (Emperor's Palace and Administratum Wangun) in my possession for quite a few years, but in preparing a 4x4 table for One Page Rules Age of Fantasy Skirmish, I found that it was about time I got the upper floors secured with some strong glue.