Monday, August 29, 2016

Frostgrave Campaign: Game 7 & A Dragon Rampant Trial Game

   This past Saturday we got together for our monthly Frostgrave Campaign game. We had 6 of our 7 regular players and one new player joined the group.    With 7 wizards in play we used the big 12'x3' table.    We were doing two of the book scenarios this time out: The Mausoleum, and the The Silent Tower.  Though for our purposes we doubled the numbers; having two mausoleums and two towers.  Also, for one of the mausoleums we used my ruined ship  model, and it would disgorge pirate skeletons as opposed to regular ones.
  For the report on the previous game, please see: Game 6
  For the report on the next game, please see: Game 8
An overview of the table.  My forces entered from the lower left corner of the photo.
Since we had developed as much as a 15+ difference in wizard levels among our players at this point, we decided to use a different method for choosing player entry points, like we did last time; letting the  lowest level wizard pick the corner they wanted to enter from first.  We then worked our way back and forth down the table seating players in order of their levels, lowest to highest.  This way, players would be facing opponents closer to their own level.
     This put my Illusionist, Kodak, and his party directly across from his old nemeses, Knabe the Druid; and on the right of the Chronomancer known as The Doctor.     Kodak would be entering once again near the riverfront by the old wrecked ship "Mausoleum".  He began by dividing up his party into three groups.  With him he took Reissa the Templar, Danlin the Marksman; and the new Treasure Hunter, Mellily Ising.  Kodak assigned to his Apprentice, Leighlyndana: Edel the Archer, Cadwalleter the Thief, and Agamemnon the Treasure Hunter,  That left Weiss the Archer, Bash the Man-at-Arms, Linesse the Thief, and Kinddrif the War Hound to act under their own initiative.
Team Kodak prepares to enter the city.
     Kodak and his group moved off to the left, though Kodak first did a Fast Act spell on Mellily to give her the jump on crossing over the wharf to the cliffs overlooking the river on the next turn.  Leighlyndana attempted the same spell, but misspoke the magic words and gave herself a bad leg cramp instead.  The rest of the party moved forward to the rear of the boat while Kinddrif the War Hound moved off to the right to stand watch over a treasure by an old river guardian colossus.  The dog was almost immediately hit by one of the Druid's archers, and before he could limp back to safety a skeleton lumbered up and bashed him over the head knocking him unconscious.
A look at my area a couple turns in.  In the foreground, Kinddrif has just been knocked out by the skeleton after being shot already by one of the Druid's men.
        Leigh attempted to cast Fast Act on Edel again, this time successfully; and he moved of to grab a treasure laying alongside the hull of the boat.  He too, was almost immediately hit by a missile from the Druid's side of the river, as another thudded agains the hull of the ship over his head. Luckily it wasn't too bad as his magic leather armor prevented some of the damage.
    Meanwhile down between the ship's hull and the stone dock, Kodak was finding he couldn't really get a view of anything, so he moved to climb up on the dock.  Mellily had made it up onto the nearby bluff, but not before two of the Druid's men had got there as well;  a Thief and a Treasure Hunter.
Mellily reaches the top of the cliff, and the treasure located there,  only to be met by two of the Druid's soldiers.
     Mellily immediately was set upon by the two enemy soldiers and called for help.  Meanwhile back in the river Agamemnon had reached the treasure by the old river guardian, only to be struck down dead by a Bone Dart from the Druid's Apprentice.   Seeing both Archers, Edel and Weiss, in position to the right of the boat, the Druid placed a wall of Fog on the river to block their shots.  Happily, Leighlyndana saw it also protected her groups retreat path as well; if they could just grab the treasures and get them back to the other side of the fog.   Edel had grabbed his, and had used his Fast Act ability to  drag the heavy chest back trough the fog before anymore shots could hit him, and he headed for the table edge.  Linesse had also grabbed a treasure from the left side of the ship and was making her way back too.  Likewise, Cadwalleter had found one in a rotting hull a short way off to the right and was already near the table edge.
     Weiss the Archer moved to the corner of the wall of Fog and could just see the treasure by the nearby colossus.  She realized she was now the only one left who could make an attempt to get it, so she moved out towards it.
A pair of wandering Ghouls approach, causing Bash to throw himself in their path to keep them away from Linesse and Edel who are both dragging treasures off the table in the background.
     Meanwhile, back by the cliff, Riessa heard Mellily's calls for help, and used her new Ring of Teleportation to move immediately up to help her friend.  Mellily then dispatched the enemy Treasure Hunter, only to find herself suddenly hit by a Push spell from the The Doctor's Apprentice, which sent her shooting back 16 inches where she dropped with a thud to the deck of the wrecked ship "Mausoleum".  Riessa quickly recovered from her shock at seeing her friend sail off into the air, and put the Druid's Thief out of action.
     Kodak could see one of the Druid's men from vantage up one the wharf now,  and attempted a Mind Control spell on him; but his will was too strong.  Likewise, Leighlyndana spied the enemy's Owl Master trying to drag a treasure away, and attempted a Mind Control spell on him and succeed.  The Owl Master obediently began dragging the treasure back towards Kodak's side of the table.
     Kodak tried the Mind Control again, and this time was successfully able to take command of the Druid's Ranger.  Almost immediately the Ranger and Owl Master were set upon by their own side.
     Meanwhile,  Weiss had made it to the treasure by the old colossus river guardian and picked it up, as missiles and Bone Darts rattled around her. One hit, but the Archer was able to ignore the injury for the moment.   As an enemy soldier approached Weiss and her treasure, Leighdana used Push to move him further way. And Weiss used that opportunity to drag the chest back through the wall of fog.
   Up on the cliff Riessa was suddenly struck by the Chronomancer's Marksman and Crossbowman and fell to the snow.   Kodak was dismayed beyond belief at seeing this, and deciding enough was enough, gave the signal for the party to withdraw.
The after action photo, showing who was left standing at the end as well as the treasures recovered and who got them.
      Back at the Inn, it was a somber scene.  Leighlyndana had had to carry the badly wounded Kinddrif back, and her tunic was stained with the dog's blood.  She swore she would pay whatever it took for healing potions for the dog (-10 GC)  Reissa, had given Kodak a few hours of terrible worry, but the Templar was made of sturdy stuff and she was able to get herself back to the Inn eventually, despite being hit by some sort of lead ball and a crossbow bolt. However, the loss of blood and internal injuries had taken their toll, and it would be a while before she would return to the city.  Sadly, Agamemnon had seen his last trip to the ruins.  Kodak thought about how the old Treasure Hunter had started out as nothing more than a Thief when he joined the party, but had shown true potential; his abilities would be missed.
        On a brighter note, Kodak was pleased that his group had recovered 4 treasures including two from the old shipwreck (mausoleum).  They contained 230 GC, as well as another Horn of Destruction and another Ring of Teleportation.  There was also a Grimoire of Reveal Invisibility, and Illusionary Soldier.  The old Illusionist thought that the Illusionary Soldier might be fun to learn.
      From a magical standpoint he and his Apprentice had only managed 7 spells, which was not ideal.  But their position down in the river, blocked by both the cliff and the shipwreck, had made seeing things to cast spells on a difficult task.  He would need to pay more attention to his fields of view in the future.  For now though, he picked up the Grimoire of Illusionary Soldier, and headed to his room.  Stopping along the way to look in on Riessa, who lay in her bed sleeping under a heavy fur blanket,  he couldn't help but notice how much she looked like her late twin sister, Elessa.    That sad dark day came back to him in a flood of memories that chilled his very heart. But then a sudden draft caused the flame of the candle on the Templar's bedstand to rise up and brighten; and the old Illusionist took it as a sign that indeed this wounded light before him would grow strong again.   Tomorrow would be another day.

Knabe, the Druid's report can be found here: Knabe's Report
Queen Elsa the Elementalist's report can be found here:  Elsa's Report

Dragon Rampant

     After we finished the Frostgrave game, we took a lunch break and packed away all the Frostgrave terrain in order to set up for the afternoon session of Dragon Rampant.  We divided into two tables; one with two players who would play the Sacred Mole of Ukkert scenario, and the the other table where four of us would engage in a simple face to face battle with one table side against the other.
Setting up for the Dragon Rampant games.
    I had an army made up mostly of old plastic Battle Masters figures with the addition of a Bones Troll.   There was a unit of Elite Riders, a unit of Heavy Foot, one of Light Foot, some Light Missile troops, and the Troll which was fielded as a Greater Warbeast.
My army, L to R: Heavy Foot, Light, Foot, Light Missile, and Elite Riders.  Not seen is the Troll (Greater Warbeast). In the distance looms the dreaded Mumakil.
         Across from me was David and his army of Haradrim from Lord of the Rings.  This included a huge Mumakil model, which even though in game terms was the same as my Troll, was still intimidating to me and my little plastic men!
My troll ends up on the receiving end of the Mumakil's charge and after a couple rounds of combat is sent packing.  Likewise, my Archers manage to do a point of damage, but then almost half are turned into a gooey pulp by the trampling beast and the rest wisely flee off the table. 
This was only my second time playing these rules, so I am far from experienced.   The rules are very simple and quick to pick up, but there is a good deal of tactics to work out especially as far as units that are good in attack and bad in defense and units that are bad in attack and good in defense.
That leaves things up to my Heavy Foot and Elite Riders who take turns charging at the beast and eventually wear it down to 0 hit points.  My small personal victory!
   After several turns of throwing units at the Mumakil my forces were spent. My only small victory was the fact that eventually I brought the huge beast down.  But since my ally Rob was having as bad as luck as I was we soon called the game.  It was a lot of fun, and I look forward to trying it again.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Giant Skeletal Animals at Giant Supermarkets

I was at my local Giant supermarket this past week and saw that they had already started putting  out their Halloween merchandise.  One of the things that caught my eye was a box containing a variety of large skeletal animals; specifically, a spider, rat, and bat. They were priced at $3.99 each.
    While quite large, I think they still have gaming potential as giant creatures, or as fodder for making bone-based terrain.  And they are surprisingly detailed for "toys".  I picked up one of the spiders, shown below with a Reaper 28mm figure.   I know spiders don't really have skeletons, but I thought this might make the basis for a cool piece of fantasy terrain, specifically for Frostgrave.    I'm not sure how I'm going to use it exactly but I have a few ideas in mind.
   And, as I look at the photo above, I'm thinking you could cobble together the bat and rat figures to make a really cool dragon skeleton!
Here is the Spider Skeleton shown with  a 28mm Reaper figure.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Mine Themed Dungeon Tile Kickstarter Video Posted

    Yesterday I posted an article to give a heads-up to everyone who hasn't checked out this excellent mined themed terrain Kickstarter from Reaper and Secret Weapon Games, and let them know that there is only 2 days left to pledge!  There are currently 88 pieces in the Core Set, which is being offered for only $75!

 Today the Kickstarter creators posted this excellent video showcasing their product, and I encourage anyone who thinks they might be interested in these tiles to watch it and be inspired.


Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Last 3 Days for Mine Themed Dungeon from Reaper & Secret Weapon

  I just wanted to give a heads-up to everyone who hasn't checked out this excellent mined themed terrain Kickstarter from Reaper and Secret Weapon Games, that there is only 3 days left to pledge!
  There are currently 88 pieces in the Core Set, which is being offered for only $75!
Not shown are 3 stair piece additions, and 4 doors
      Currently the stretch goal being worked towards is for three neat elevated walkway pieces for just $8.

 To me, the coolest part is the  mine track add-on set, currently available for an $18 add-on amount:

Don't miss out on this great terrain opportunity, that is usable not just for fantasy gaming, but also Wild West, Pulp, Weird War II, Sci-Fi, and Pirate games.  Check it out here:

Friday, August 5, 2016

GW Witch Hunter Converted to Frostgrave Thug

   A while back I came across a photo of the Games Workshop metal Witch Hunter figure of the fellow carrying an axe in one hand, and a puppet in the other.  I knew I had to have one for my Frostgrave collection, as it was such a silly looking model. So I searched ebay for a while and was able to snag one.
I forgot to take a "before" picture, so I borrowed one off the internet.  This isn't the actual figure I used.
   The puppet, as it comes with the figure, represents a religious personality with a mitre and staff.  I, however, wanted it to be more of a "Mini Me" representation of the puppeteer (obviously driven a little looney from repeated trips into the frozen city). So, I replaced the crooked head of the staff with a small axe head, and carved his mitered hat down to look more like a helmet. 
    I painted him up, and did the puppet in the same color scheme.  I wasn't sure what to do on his wooden sign, and then I got the idea to do it as a scoreboard, as if our Thug and his little friend were having a contest to see which one of them could despatch the most enemies.
     I'm really happy with how he (they?) turned out.  I think it will make a fun addition to my Frostgrave collection.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

The Chained Demon: Frostgrave Terrain

Subtitled: Some Things Should Never be Allowed to Thaw...

     This past week I completed an unusual terrain project for my Frostgrave games; and a little back story is required first.  Over the summer I took part in a round-robin miniatures-themed exchange box; where a box is sent around and each person takes whatever they want out, and puts in an equivalent amount. I took from the box: a GW Harpy figure, a section of tail from the Reaper Bones undead dragon "Kaladrax" figure, and three hexagon shaped ceramic tiles.  I wasn't sure what I was going to do with these items when I took them, but as I sat at the dining room table looking at them, a crazy idea came to me of how I could combine them.  I gathered some other parts, and started.
      As you can see in the photo above, I also used a CD, some bases, a plaster disc I had, four small eye rings, some small nails, and a length of jewelry chain.  Also note, the Kaladrax tail section has been cut in three equal pieces.  I assembled them as shown below.
 After assembling I realized I hadn't primed anything, so I carefully wrapped the Bones tail sections in paper, and sprayed the whole piece with White Primer.  I then began painting it.
 I had originally intended to have the figure on top partially frozen in a hunk of ice; and I planned to use Woodland Scenics "Water Effects" for that.  So I tested this idea on an old GW skeleton figure I had lying around.  In the end, I felt it didn't resemble ice enough, so I scrapped that idea.
   I ended up just winterizing it in a normal fashion with some piles of unmelted snow and a few icicles.

I'm really happy with how this turned out.  It's odd, but I like it!  I look forward to using it in this month's Frostgrave campaign game.