Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Gnomevember 2016

I managed to paint up a gnome for Gnomevember - and just in the nick of time too. At this rate I'll have all the citadel gnomes painted by the time I'm in my early 60s - on the basis I've got all 21 slotta based gnomes, and have painted 3 before I have turned 43. I might see if I can do a few of these next Gnomevember...




Saturday, 26 November 2016

A 10,000 point game of Kings of War

Had a blast at the war-games club yesterday playing a large game of KoW - 5000 points and two players per side. Tom GM'ed the game which worked really well - he added a number of ideas:

- the sides were determined randomly - the result being my undead were allied with Rowan's Barbarians whilst Tony's humans (with a small dwarf contingent) were allied with Greg's Forces of Nature army;
- a number of objectives were in play - when reached (you only had to move a unit onto them to obtain them) each objective gave your side an advantage card that could be used in a subsequent turn. I don't know what all of the cards were but I managed to obtain a card that gave 2 units a second move as well as two separate cards that allowed units with ranged weapons to fire twice in a turn;
- two impassable swamps that the side who won the scouting turn (and that was based on the number of troops you had in your army) could place after deployment. You couldn't place them on opposing units but you could place the swamps in front of opposing units to cause them problems;
- a large temple which was placed randomly and was impassible terrain;
- baggage areas that were worth a 100 points if you managed to sack them (flying units couldn't do this);
- the side that won a dice roll got archer stakes that they could place anywhere on the board - these stakes prevented any unit behind them from being charged. As it turned out we won the roll for these and placed them in front of Rowan's barbarian archers;
- deployment of any unit bigger than a troop had to be done secretly - troops could be deployed on the table after all other units had been deployed. 

As things turned out both sides deployed their units in the same area of the table - the result being that to a fair degree the game was two separate games of one army vs the other. So most of my undead force faced off against Tony's humans except for a horde of ghouls which attacked Greg. In the end Rowan and myself won after Greg and Tony conceded at the end of turn 4.  By this stage most of Greg's army had been routed and whilst Tony still had a number of units in the field many were suffering a decent number of wounds whilst facing units that had little to no damage. Anyway here are the pics:

Set up behind my undead

Set up - Tony's humans

Set up - Greg's forces of nature

Set up - Forces of nature and the baggage
Set up - Rowan's barbarians

Set up - centre of the combined undead and barbarians

My wraiths attack the humans waivering both units  (they routed both cavalry units in my following turn)

The clash in the centre - the dice are wound markers




The ghouls and forest shamblers duke it out whilst the archers reign arrows down on the shamblers


The barbarian mammoths charge forward

Greg and Rowan's forces clash on the left after skirting around the swamp
The wraiths and undead cavalry wheel around to assault the remains of the human line

Forces slug it out in the middle - this was just after I routed two troops of handgunners

The shamblers are being whittled down

The situation on the left if grim for Greg

As it is towards the middle

The shambers rout after dispatching the ghouls
The undead slowly overwhelm the humans and dwarves
A final charge from the humans as they attempt to breech the undead line (they failed)
The barbarian general attacking the poor defense-less (well not really) lady 
At this point we called it - the forces of nature had been largely swept from the field and on the other side of the table the same result was coming to the human forces that were left. A very enjoyable game that took a tad under 3 hours to play. So what did I learn? Well I finally used wraiths well in a game which was nice - and I found out why mummies are generally used in any undead force as they were nasty. And my hordes all performed well except for the werewolves which I held back a turn too long. And I didn't use the revenant king on the wyvern well. I should have stuck with my original plan which was to fly him straight over the human left flank and then charge along their flank.

I also found out how good pikemen can be - especially on the defense. But that was a double edged sword for Tony - whilst I couldn't rout any of them (largely because of the ensnare rule which meant my to hit rolls were at minus 1) they didn't do much damage in return. Tony was unlucky with his damage rolls but it was clear that the pikemen's lack of crushing strength was a problem when facing decent troops. They did manage to rout a unit of cavlary but that did take two turns - and by that point I had cleared out a number of units from that flank so I had spare units to meet the threat.

Thursday, 24 November 2016

A Dungeonquest miracle

Well miracle might be overdoing it a bit. But the odds of getting out like I did would have been pretty low. The situation was this - playing Serillia the elf I had managed to get to the dragon's treasure chamber but without enough time to get to an exit before the time tracker ran out. That left me with one choice - hope I managed to find the book in the treasure chamber without waking the dragon or running out of time. Now if you have ever played dungeonquest with all the add ons you know how hard this is - finding a specific treasure item for one isn't easy. And if you don't find it early on your chances of waging the dragon and becoming toast increase with each attempt. And then if you find said book you have a one in twelve chance of the book containing the correct spell which transports you out of the castle. Well on my fourth turn in the chamber I found the book - on the second last turn of the game before the time tracker ran out. And after my son had been in the chamber and successfully avoided waking the dragon (so one sleeping dragon counter was out of the game when I got there). So as noted above I had a one in twelve chance - I told the boy this and rolled a 12. And then ran around the house like a madman celebrating my miracle escape. I love dungeonquest - one of the greatest games I've ever played. Oh and my son fell down the bottomless pit whilst trying to escape the castle toward them end of the game. He was none to impessed

Here are the pics of the endgame. Oh and I ended up with 4010 gold pieces which is a nice haul.

The 12, the book and my other treasure from the chamber

Me in the chamber at the end

Time tracker

The dragon counters that were left

Saturday, 12 November 2016

I'm back

It has been a while since I've posted up anything - largely due to the fact I was in the US for a 2 week holiday and didn't get back until last Monday. I didn't pick up a paint brush (largely due to jet lag) until last night. But I did manage to take some pics of figures I finished off just before I left. These are a real mixed bag - a couple of figures for my undead army, a night horror I did for Halloween even though I spent that in Fremont Street in Vegas, a foundry bear and a couple of figures for heroquest. Anyway here they are:











Sunday, 2 October 2016

A small game of WFB 3rd edition

Inspired by this post on Snickit's Tail I played a muck around game of Warhammer Fantasy Battle 3rd edition with my son using the painted minis I had on hand. Now the idea snicket has come up with is to encourage people to paint up a 1000 point force from scratch, not to use figures one has on hand. But I thought I might see how such a game goes before jumping in and painting up a new force. It was good fun even if I had trouble flicking through the rulebook at times. If anyone in the Melbourne area is up for the snicket challenge (I cannot see myself getting to BOYL '17) that would convince me to paint up the Slann figures I have which would allow me to field a 1000 point army fairly easily (I can be contacted at firthy11@yahoo.com). I do have 4 finished trogodytes already so I'm off to some sort of a start...

I won't provide a blow by blow account of how things went or the forces that I used. A couple of points of note though are:

1. I used a 5 foot by 3 foot table - to account for the smaller width I reduced the area allowed for initial deployment

2. The undead army I used was led by a level 5 vampire who was able to summon extra skellies, undead riders and 2 champions before the battle using the necromantic spells that it had (I used the full magic rules BTW). Needless to say with 40 magic points the vampire was well worth it. One cannot do this if you use the rules in warhammer armies which only allow casting of one spell before the battle which I find to be pretty daft. The core rules don't have this limitation and for good reason - illusionist spells are largely useless with the restriction in warhammer armies.

3. I gave two of the mounted units a chance to rally at the edge of the board when both were routed as a result being pushed back at the start of the third turn even though technically both units should have simply routed off the board. One passed the test whilst the other didn't.  

4. I didn't give the cannon crew a chance to rally; the carrion that routed each crew also flew straight off the board as they didn't have sufficient room to turn to stay on the field of battle


Anyway here are the pics:

The boy at setup

After the scouting turn - the Bretonnians decided not to send out a scouting force

Bretonnian left flank

Bretonnian right flank

Undead right flank - note the vampire leading the ghouls

Undead left flank

Undead first turn

Bretonnian first turn just before the cannons made a mess of the ghouls and zombies

Undead second turn - carrion rout both cannon crew and one units of knights

Second routed cannon

Skellies rout the second unit of knights who manage to rally before they exit the field of battle
The knights rout the zombies who cannot rally

The ghouls rout the archers - well what was left of them

And the ghouls then pursue the archers off the table when they fail their leadership roll! The vampire reformed though

The combined attack on the spear armed retainers finally forces them to rout

All that was left when I called it
So what did I learn? First the combat resolution modifiers for large units are deadly - even when fairly crappy units are charged by small, expensive mounted units. And units that cause fear are extremely dangerous as all they have to do is to manage one push back and their opponents rout. Which happened a bit. Finally undead are pretty crappy if they don't manage to rout their opponents quickly - the unit of 10 summoned riders were getting beaten by the retainers until other units were able to pitch in.

Monday, 26 September 2016

Bob Olley madness

As I noted in an earlier post I bought some Bob Olley Essex undead. They are on the big side and some suffer a case of bubbleheaditis but I love them nonetheless. Like most of Olley's stuff they are gnarled and brilliantly detailed - especially the figures with shields and banners. Which brings me to these two:

Zombie king

A classic Olley shield