Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Still Here!

Hi!

Well it's been almost three months since I last posted and I thought I'd best post something to prove I'm still here!

Alas work has been really exhausting so painting and sculpting time has been pretty much non existent of late but I have taken to carrying a notebook around with me and whenever I have some spare moments, I scribble down ideas for Aeroth and its peoples and I've found myself developing the setting in a rather interesting way!

Gone is pretty much everything from the original setting and in it's place a new and rather compelling one is taking its place. Aeroth is now all that remains of a galaxy spanning civilisation and the world itself is scarred by an ancient war that the Elves fought against a forgotten foe. Technology is rather more visible than previously whilst the races themselves are being rejigged and redeveloped.

I am also trying to put aside an hour a day to start sketching out some of the more notable locations in the world, be it the ruined megacity surrounding the Elven capital obelisk of Azgaroth, the ruined starfactory of Shale or the Altar of the Worm. Similarly I am also sketching out some of the denizens of the world and their histories which is proving to be just as interesting!

Thus far, I have lots of ideas, notes and doodles which I need to continue refining and developing but once I've got the world outlined a bit more, I'll post up some gubbins about it and then get down to developing the forces that are fighting over Aeroth. Interestingly, the more I develop my ideas for the world, the more the original Leviathan rules become more suitable with some tweaking so I think I may have to try out some battles to playtest some of the ideas I have...

Hopefully my next post will also have some pics to go along with my waffling but in the meantime, All the best!

Monday, 8 August 2016

A Burst of Creativity

Hi!

Well it's been quite a while since I've done much in the way of blogging but I have recently been struck by an irresistible urge to draw and with that the urge to sculpt stuff has struck with a vengeance!

I am getting married in a couple of weeks time so unsurprisingly there's not been much chance to do any sculpting but I plan on taking my sketchpads with me on honeymoon as we navigate the north coast of Scotland in hopes of fleshing out some of the ideas which are swirling around in my head at the moment.

These can be split into three rough categories:

Aeroth Warband Building

I actually have a fair amount of stuff sorted for Aeroth which will see Marik Goldhelms force up to full strength and a new campaign season kicking off.

Marik Goldhelm up to his old tricks!

I also plan to develop the setting a bit further, combining elements of steampunk, sci-fi and fantasy and each force will be getting a bit of a revamp and redesign too with more magitech elements starting to appear on the battlefield for the first time.

SD Battletech

I originally started sculpting some very stylised Mechs a year or so ago and even managed to almost finish a lance of Davion recon mechs before other projects started encroaching on my time. Having recently rediscovered them, I feel a fresh need to complete the project, build a command mech for my Davion force and even build some opponents for them to skirmish with.

 Davion Mechs scout out a ruined Star League installation.

As with each of my projects, I am thinking of having a bash at resin casting them at home to speed things up but I also want to re-explore the Inner Sphere and play around with the aesthetics of each of the great houses mech forces to produce a more unified finish.

Davion Javelin Mech on patrol.

Looking through my sketchbooks, I have some fun ideas that I want to try out in a slightly alternative Inner Sphere without the nonsense of the Clan menace, instead focusing on the machinations of the great houses helped along with the discovery of lost Star League era tech.

SD Sci-Fi Skirmishing

Another long term ponderment for me has been the possibility of creating some skirmish warbands for the likes of Rogue Trader, Void 1.1 and even Kryomek but using my own, rather stylised sculpts to not only save money but also to add a bit of lightness and fun into things.

 Bloodaxe Patrol

I must admit that 28mm has been calling me. As much as I like 15mm scale, the lack of character of many of the sculpts is rather disheartening but my SD stuff seems to tick both boxes as they only stand about 20mm tall but do have lots of character and it's easy to tell what equipment they have and each character actually looks different too!

Servile Minion

Again, I have loads of sketches and doodles and even a few painted bits and bobs that I've not shown off before and I hope to have the chance to flesh out some of the sketches into fully realised miniatures and maybe even put together some small warbands to play out a game or two!

Hopefully I will be able to get one or two updates put together early next month with some concept sketches and more rambling, not to mention some more sculpts!

In the meantime, All the best!

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

True Atronian Warband Part 3

Hi!

Well I am slowly working through my True Atronian warband and have finally finished another figure in the form of a Virian Sister.

 Virian Sister

Armed with a morningstar and bad attitude, she's a lovely little sculpt and makes a fine addition to the warband itself.

The Warband Thus Far!

I must admit that I am rather pleased with my progress on the diminuative warband, especially as they are such fine little sculpts, each being mounted on a 20mm base apart from the Canid who is on a 25mm one. 

I am really appreciating the variation in each and every piece I've painted thus far and look forward to adding another to their numbers soon!

All the best!

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Holidays!

Hi!

Well I am on holiday for the next week or so and am looking forward to spending a little bit of time in hobby related shenanigans!

Alas there's not much free time to spend on hobby related goodness as there's my wedding coming up but I do want to make a bit of time to work on revamping Leviathan!

 Stomp!

Following the last battle report I put together, I found myself incredibly frustrated with the rules as they stood as there's just so many inconsistancies, pooly explained rules and some faily important stuff left out completely so I think I need to pull things back to the basics and rebuild the rules from the ground up.

Before I do this, I think I need to explore just what Leviathan is supposed to be. The problem is I have two wildly different views of it. There's the mass battle approach with ranks of infantry battling it out with mighty warbeasts and engines of destruction but then there's the more realistic skirmish setting with small bands fighting it out for survival in a post apocalyptic wasteland.

Unsurprisingly, these two visions don't mesh well together as Aeroth is supposed to have suffered a magical apocalypse which mutated the very world itself and brought an end to civilisation. How then can large forces operate in such a wasteland? The problem is I like the idea of big beasts and mighty armies so how do I go about fixing it?

Boar Company

One approach is to have the action moved forward several hundred years so societies have formed and the world has begun repairing itself but resources are still scarce and fought over fiercely by the kingdoms.

Secondly, I have railed often enough about the generic Tolkienesque settings often enough but find that Leviathan, despite it's cosmetic differences, still has too many of the reused tropes of so many other games over the years so I need to move it on and push things a bit further. I need to get my teeth into the background and rework it to my own specification and once I have the setting done to what I want, the game itself will hopefully follow!

With that in mind, I think I will be spending much of this week putting together my notes on the world and putting some pages up on here to illustrate my thoughts!

Hopefully, I will have something to show soon so stay tuned!

All the best!

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

True Atronian Warband Part 2

Hi!

Well surprise surprise! I actually managed to get another figure painted up for my True Atronian warband!

 True Atronian Glaive Guard

While the other members of the warband are Vidaar, this new addition is a Elvorix doe so has somewhat daintier features than her sisters. I seem to struggle a bit with photos of the figures but I went with a light skin/fur tone with some freckles and stripes to make her a bit more interesting and once again, the Zombiesmith figures don't disappoint as they paint up really nicely, despite their diminutive and dainty scale!

The Warband thus far!

I'm really pleased with how things are going with the force at the moment and have just primed another figure to add to the mix and hopefully I will get chance to paint her up soon too!

In the meantime, I've been perusing Shieldwall, the mass battle game set in the War of Ashes world and am really liking the concepts featured so may try out a bit of a proxy game or two in the not too distant future!

Till then, All the best!

Sunday, 8 May 2016

True Atronian Warband Project Part 1

Hi!

Well it's been a busy couple of weeks here with work and whatnot but I've managed to get some small amount of painting done in the form of a Kanid from Zombiesmith's absolutely lovely War of Ashes range:

 Kanid

He's been sat primed on my desk for absolutely ages so I thought I'd give him a quick lick of paint and he turned out rather nicely which got me to thinking about the other figures from the range that I have lying around unpainted which then gave me a bit of an idea!

What about setting myself a bit of a challenge to get them painted? I have a total of 15 infantry and one warbeast so how hard can it be to get the lot of them painted up over the coming months?

Looking through the War of Ashes Shieldbash rulebook (It's totally worth picking up a copy of the PDF as it's a really nice set of rules with an interesting background and lovely illustration by the way!) and forces generally consist of roughly 300 points a piece so the aim is to see if I can paint up a decent starter force with what I have got!

 The Warband thus far!

Looking at what I have painted thus far, I have my force leader, the Hurscaree, an elite fighter named an Aelfryee and now a Kanid, a lowly pack hound.

This comes to 88 points which isn't too bad and I just need to flesh out the force a bit with some troops and the True Atronians have some cracking choices and the assorted gubbins I have awaiting paint should provide me with an interesting selection.

The next step will be to set myself an achievable goal so I am aiming low by challenging myself to update the blog at least once a week with a single painted figure for the force until I have them all done so with a bit of work, I should have the whole force done in a couple of months!

Hopefully I will get another update over the next couple of days so watch this space!

All the best!

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Denizens of Aeroth: The Cave Dweller

Hi!

At long last, I've had chance to get another addition to my Aeroth project in the form of a Cave Dweller!

Cave Dweller
 
The effects of The Death have been manifested in both a warped landscape and mutated creatures. No one is sure what the ancestry of the Cavern Dweller actually is. Standing roughly six feet tall but stooped and warped with pallid blue skin, clawed hands and an eyeless head. 

Despite their lack of eyes, the Cave Dwellers are adept hunters of the dark subterranean world surrounding the Dwarven holds. These strange creatures have an exceptionally keen sense of smell and many an unwary traveller has been waylaid in the dark by packs of Cave Dwellers.

 Cave Dweller versus Boar Company!

From time to time, packs of Cave Dwellers venture to the surface world and raid lonely communities at night. Of late the Boar Company have been hired to deal with one such pack that have been plaguing the frontier.

Hopefully I will have chance to paint up one or two more in the next couple of weeks and even get a couple more sculpted up too!
All the best!
 

Friday, 15 April 2016

Delays Delays Delays...

Morning folks!

Apologies for the lack of anything resembling updates over the last couple of weeks as I've had family visiting which has made hobby time take a massive step back. Coupled with extra work with my job and impending wedding my hobby seems to have taken a real beating.

This doesn't seem to be helped by me having a sudden hit of hobby malaise which has stopped me from accomplishing anything even when I did have a spare minute!

Still I am attempting to remedy this with some blog updating so try and spur me back into action! With this in mind, I've been reworking some of my original setting ideas and trying to move beyond the sculpts and designs I have thus far attempted.

Worry not though, the Boar Company, Marik and all the other assorted stuff I have will be continuing as they are but I want to try and do something a bit more with the overall world concept...

 The Boar Company

Speaking of which, I actually have a few sculpts near completion or in some cases just awaiting a lick of paint which will add some reinforcements to the Boar Company as well as give me some random wandering denizens of Aeroth to hassle the assorted warbands with so watch this space! 

I suspect that over the coming months, I will only be able to post up here irregularly but fingers crossed, I will manage a post a week and once the wedding is out of the way, I hope to be able to get back to more normal service with fairly regular updates and even the odd battle report!


In the meantime, I will need to crack on with the setting which is really rather vague at the moment but I have glimmerings of an idea that I want to explore so I think I need to sit down and get some writing done...

All the best!

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Pondering Post Death Aeroth

Hi!

Well unsurprisingly I seem to be doing rather more work stuff at home than hobbying but I have had a bit of a chance to ponder over some of the ideas I have been ruminating on for Aeroth.

Inspiration Strikes!

I've found myself drawn to the post apocalyptic fantasy setting presented in Leviathan for over two decades now and have even managed to play several games too but the rules need an awful lot of work and the more I have thought about it, the more the background seems like it doesn't go far enough.

Yes the world has been seriously warped with polychromatic deserts and ruins instead of rolling plains and majestic cities. The forests have been replaced with weird fungal growths that can spring up overnight and vanish just as quickly but I find myself wondering just how can large forces operate in such a nightmare environment. Surely things would be more akin to a post apocalyptic setting here ala Mad Max and so on.

This has set me off rummaging out all the post apocalyptic rulesets I can find as well as reading as much stuff as I can find as well as scribbling down notes and have come to a bit of a conclusion.

I think I need to totally rework the setting to be more akin to what I want. Yes there will still be Dwarves, Elves, Orcs and barbarians but I also want to explore some other possibilities that I've been mulling over during the last couple of months...

I want to keep this blog as much about miniatures as possible but am working on some new background gubbins which I will be posting at some point in the not too distant future but I suspect I am going to be deviating from the more typical fantasy tropes as I go including a re imagined reason for The Death.

No doubt I will ramble on a fair amount more over the coming days and weeks and hope to get some decent length articles put together with a fair amount of illustrations to keep things lively so watch this space!

All the best!

Friday, 18 March 2016

Still Here!

Hi!

Apologies for the lack of updates over the last few weeks but the dreaded real life has once again intruded into my hobby and as a result, I seem to have absolutely no time to do anything hobby related!

It's proving rather infuriating but can't be helped but hopefully normal service will be resumed soon as I have a holiday coming up to look forward too and hope to get a bit of a mini campaign put together so watch this space for further updates!

In the meantime, All the best!

Monday, 29 February 2016

Leviathan Ponderings

Hi!

Apologies for the delay in any kind of update over the last week or so but things have been a bit mental at work of late.

Still, I have managed to play out another 1000 point game of Leviathan, this time featuring the Elves taking on Orcs. It took three evenings to play out the game as I've been knackered and it has given me quite a lot to mull over with regards to Leviathan...


The forces are identical to some of the previous battle reports I put together but I held the Everhungry in reserve and would force the Elven wizard to summon it later in the game.




I've decided not to report the full game as I didn't take full notes as I went but will give a brief overview of the game as it played out!

The Elves started out trying to close with the Orcs on one flank by manoeuvring through undergrowth in the hopes of avoiding getting shot up by the large number of Goblin archers lurking in the Orcish force but the Elven prince riding an Earthbound dragon threw caution to the wind and charged one unit of Goblins. It seemed like a good idea at the time as the Goblins would have to roll 7 or under on a D20 to pass their Resolve check but they promptly did and peppered the charging beast with barbed arrows.

Melee!

Despite being mortally wounded, the beast crashed into the Goblin unit but both it and it's rider failed to hit any of the diminutive Goblins, who in return, swarmed over the beast, killing it and it's rider!

I've noticed a pattern with my warbeast riding characters in these games all coming to a sticky end when they charge enemy infantry which is becoming a bit of an issue. Fair enough it would be a better idea to get some support before hurling oneself into combat but even so, it's not as much fun!

Similarly, the issue of damaging warbeasts needs quite a bit of work I think. At present you roll on their damage table which can have one of five results but how many wounds can they take? At present it's not explained very well and what about rolling the same results on the chart? I believe that they result in you going for the next most serious roll but again, it's just not explained in the rules which I am starting to find a bit frustrating.

Meanwhile, on the other flank the Orcish Necrosaur crew fires their bolt thrower at a distant Earthbound but fail to hit at the range and in return a unit of Elven Powerlancers send crackling beams of energy crashing into it's supporting Carnousar causing the beast to rampage.

RAMPAGE!

This was one of the most entertaining parts of the game as the Carnosaur went mental and charged the Necrosaur, causing it too to rampage! 

The next turn saw the Elves concentrate fire on the swirling melee of rampaging beasts, killing the Carnosaur outright and mortally wounding the Necrosaur which was finished off by the Earthbound breathing fire on it.

On the other flank, the Elven infantry charged a second unit of Goblin archers who managed to pass their Resolve test too and managed to shoot down two of the approaching infantry. The resulting melee saw the Goblins almost wiped out as the Elves used their extra attacks to slaughter the lowly Gobbos.

The Goblins once again prove their worth by holding fast in the face of being charged by the Elves.

The Elven wizard managed to summon the Everhungry which promptly charged the remaining Carnosaur and in the crushing melee, both beasts caused wounds but failed to bring either down.

I decided to make an opposed Resolve test for the summoning of the Everhungry and it seems to have worked out ok, but I think that expanded Earthpower rules should clarify things further as I'd like to see a miscast table for when things go wrong and some sort of mechanism to make spellcasting a bit more interesting.

The Elves were victorious as they were starting to seriously maul the remaining Orcs who mostly consisted of infantry so At this point, I decided to call it a day and set to scribbling down some thoughts on the game and what needs tinkering, what needs major work and what works as is.

I've been having some serious ponderings about the whole Leviathan rules over the last couple of weeks and as I mentioned in my report, there's some serious issues needing addressed. On the one hand, I am finding the game doesn't really mesh with the background the book features and similarly the rules themselves are rather more full of holes than I had initially thought.

Leviathan is supposed to be set after a terrible apocalypse which pretty much sees the world end and survivors having to find some sort of way of adapting to the new and altered environment but the game seems to try and concentrate on the clash of large forces. There's also the issue of warbeasts and warmachines. One gets the impression that they are supposed to be central to the game but in actual fact, they seem to be a bit underwhelming more often than not.

There's also the reoccurring issue of poorly explained rules and in some cases, no explanation at all which is becoming increasingly frustrating to deal with in game. On the one hand, I am more than happy to bodge rules and make up stuff on the spot but at the same time, it seems to be really slowing down the game as I rifle through the book, trying, sometimes without success, to find a rule I am looking for!

It's a crying shame as the background is great and there is the core of a good ruleset in Leviathan but it needs an awful lot of work to really develop, polish and present it as a clearly explained and playable system.

With this in mind, I think that the next game I play will be with a different system which I know is complete and well playtested which I hope will give me the opportunity to try out some new ideas and compile things into something resembling sense before tackling Leviathan again.

Speaking of which, I am thinking that I need to move away from calling it Leviathan as the rules as is are going to be very different from the rules I am going to be presenting so I will be naming the next set Aeroth 1.0 for the moment and will be seeking to develop the background into a more suitable direction and tinkering with getting a more playable ruleset put together.

Next time I post a battle report, it will be based around the freely available No Quarter rules by Wargames Unlimited which I played quite a bit in the early 2000's and I'm quite keen to reacquaint myself with so watch this space and apologies for rambling on!

All the best!

Friday, 19 February 2016

An Ode to Lost Games

Hi!

Well my day off has not resulted in much more hobby activity than sculpting a top lip to one of the Cave Dwellers that I am currently working on but I did spend a little time this afternoon perusing some of my less well remembered rulesets.

Over the years, I seem to have collected rather a lot of rules for games that have fallen by the wayside, both fantasy and sci-fi. A quick peruse this evening shows 60+ fantasy rulesets alone that seem to have found their way into my collection and it seems a real shame not to actually try and do something with them.

On the one hand, I do find them rather inspirational as there's some brilliant background and ideas in said games but it strikes me as rather a pity that designers spent ages writing rules, building settings and in many cases, creating entire worlds for gamers to play in, only for them to be abandoned on a shelf when the company shuts up shop or moves onto other things.

I've really enjoyed the opportunity to play some games of Leviathan over the last couple of weeks and want to explore the possibilities that some of the others can present!


While most of the posts will be set in Aeroth, I do hope to put together one or two games in Crucible as well but will be keeping the action in the same world but featuring survivors of The Death fleeing to the lost continent! It will also give me the chance to explore some different scenic stuff too which hopefully will keep me from getting too bogged down.

I think the first thing I need to do though is to post a review of Leviathan now I've got the hang of it. I can't believe that I've had the rules for such a long time and obsessed about it for literally decades and never written one so do expect some sort of ramblings on it soon!

I also want to explore some of the other rulesets that I have which are currently gathering dust which will feature here in the coming month too including Chronopia...

I'll also try to finish off some gubbins for Song of Blades soon so watch this space!

All the best!

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Somewhere on the Border: Skirmish in the Wastes

Hi!

I managed to play out a quick game of Song of Blades and Heroes last night and thought I'd post a bit of a battle report up here!

Introduction

The Boar Company have handed over the guardianship of the outpost at Kar Morn to troops from the Engineering Guild and headed out into the wastelands of the High Mesa in search of their longtime foe, Marik Goldhelm with a mind to settling accounts with the Sorcerer who recently killed one of their number.

"It's him alright chief!" exclaimed the Erro, the Dwarven hunter to his taciturn commander, "I spotted Marik and his thugs camped out on the other side of that Mushroom forest!"

"Good!" Grunted Grimli, "Go and take up your position with Flint and the others on the other flank and we'll move on him from two sides and finally catch the scum!"

"Be careful chief. I spotted deathcaps in the mushroom forests around here. Get near one and it'll choke you with spores!"

"Let the others know to avoid the fungus if they can and by the ancestors, let's go get Marik!" With that, Grimli unsheathed his sword and motioned to the troopers accompanying him. They'd wait until Flint got into position and then move out...

The Forces

I plan on making this the first game in a campaign so am following the guidelines from Songs of Deeds and Glory, the campaign supplement for Song of Blades so the two forces start out with 300 points to spend and each has a home territory comprised of three different types of terrain.

 The Boar Company

Commanded by Grimli Gundrusson, the Boar Company is a force of Dwarven volunteers who patrol the wild frontier in search of adventure. They currently hold a grudge against Marik Goldhelm for killing one of their company at Kar Morn.

1 Dwarf Commander
1 Dwarf Elite Trooper
1 Dwarf Crossbowman
4 Dwarf Warriors

301 Points

 Lonepeak

Home Territory: Dur Zamor. Lonepeak, the easternmost Dwarven that lies in the high mesa and overlooks the Endless Plains. From here, the Dwarves have been dispatching patrols to explore the surrounding territory and also keep the local Goblin tribes in check. They also overlook the old trade route to the East, along which the Orcish hordes travel to lay siege to the Axebite Pass to the west.

Marik Goldhelm's Retinue

Marik Goldhelm is a renegade sorcerer and troublemaker along the border of Dwarven territory. He is constantly searching for artifacts from the ages past that he can use to give himself more sorcerous power and seeking somewhere to set up a fortified base to operate from. He had thought that the abandoned Dwarven outpost of Kar Morn would be ideal but no sooner had he arrived than the Boar Company had driven him out from it.

1 Human Warmage
1 Wight
3 Human Swordsmen
2 Giant Bats

 282 Points


The North Woods

Home Territory: The North Woods. Bordering the mesa and the Endless Plains, the North Woods are a grim and dangerous place. Inhabited by wild and dangerous beasts and consisting of dark pines, fungal growths and dotted with ancient barrows, no sane person would venture into the place but Marik seeks to loot the burial mounds in search of artifacts.

The Game

The Dwarves have discovered Marik's camp and have elected to attack it but their scout has spotted that all the patches of cover in the region are infected with Deathcap mushrooms which will eject choking spores if anyone touches them. To reflect this, any model that enters a terrain element needs to roll a D6. On a 1-2 they have stumbled across Deathcaps and are immediately removed from play!

The Dwarves separate into two groups, Grimli leading two troopers one in the centre and accompanied by the crossbowman while Flint leads the other two from the flank. Marik, sensing the approach of the Dwarves separates his force into three groups, two minions scurry towards the flank while he stands with his Wight and another minion in the centre and the two giant bats follow their masters command to move along the other flank.

 Giant Bats!

The Dwarves, perhaps exhausted by their long trek, suffer rather poor activation rolls leaving them spread out in both groups while Mariks forces move in a more cohesive manner. Flints group moves to intercept the bats but one of the troopers, possibly keen to avenge his slain kin, hurtles forward outpacing the others towards the great bats.

 Scurry!

Grimli's group stays somewhat closer together but still cannot seem to stay in a tight group. The crossbowman moves towards the flank, hoping to keep out of the way and sneak in a shot or two a the approaching minions. 

Grimli's group advances

Outraged at being chased, Marik moves forward in an uncharacteristically bold move accompanied by his minion. The Wight trudges along behind, it's ancient bones creaking as it follows its masters mental commands.

 Marik advances vigorously.

On the flank, the two minions also rush around the edge of the forest and seek to join up with their leader, realising that they outnumber the approaching Dwarves and might stand a chance of defeating them before their distant kin can reach the combat.

Minions advance

The group led by Flint attempts to charge the giant bats but can't quite reach but in return the bats swoop down on the stout Dwarves and a swirling melee ensues with the bats managing to push back or knock over the Dwarves several times but not able to capitalise on their advantage. 


Eventually, the Boar Companies superior numbers tell and one of the bats is felled with a lucky blow and the remaining bat is in trouble as it now faces three angry Dwarves...

Chop! A Bat falls in combat.

In the centre, Marik pauses and summons up a bolt of magic which he unleashes at the approaching Dwarven trooper but the bolt fails to do more than make the Dwarves hair stand on end and the Boar Company begins to close with their foe.

A swirling melee

The minions and Wight engage the Dwarves in combat with Marik watching on and in the swirling melee, many a blow is landed but not much damage occurs until a trooper drops one of the minions with a well placed strike.

Meanwhile on the other flank, the Giant Bat, realising it is outmatched, uses it's free disengage to soar off towards the other combat, leaving Flint and the two Boar Company troopers a long way from the action. Can they close with the melee which is seeing their companions hard pressed before they are overwhelmed?

Where'd he go!

The next turn saw a stalemate in the main combat as both sides once again struggled to damage their opponents but the Giant Bat's appearance turned the tide as it defeated the remaining trooper and knocked him to the ground. Flint and co, following a great deal of sprinting, began to close in on the melee but not before Marik, in a fit of spite, ran into the melee with the downed Dwarf and gave him a serious kicking which took the trooper out of combat. 

Marik applies the boot to the downed Dwarf.

At this point, Flint and co finally approach the melee but once again, Marik opens up with a blast of magic which takes another trooper out of combat before beating a hasty retreat.

ZZAP! Marik once again proves to be a menace with magic.

Conclusion

Grimli sombrely paused next to the fallen troopers and cursed the impetuousness that had caused him to rush after Marik instead of waiting for a more suitable time to deal with the rogue sorcerer. His rash actions had left one of his troops dead and another wounded. 

"Damn that accursed sorcerer!" He fumed. Time and time again the golden helmed renegade had escaped but the last two skirmishes had been fatal. 

"Don't worry chief." murmured Flint as he put a hand on his commanders shoulder, "It was their time and you did nothing wrong. We were all just as keen to gut the bastard."

"That may be the case Flint, but it was my duty to keep you lot safe and I've failed in my oath and the name of Gundrusson won't be cleared until I seperate Goldhelms head from his body but that will have to wait."

"Fashion some litters together and we will take Olof with us as I refuse to bury him in this accursed place!" 

"He will rest with his ancestors back at Kar Morn and will have Welde for company." "We'll get some rest and then pick up Marik's trail once our injured are recovered and our dead decently buried."

Flint moved off to carry out his chief's orders and left the older Dwarf to his thoughts. Marik would pay for his insults and the Boar Company would see to it!

After Game 

Gosh! Well that was a thrilling game! The Boar Company have taken a bit of a beating over the last couple of games but won the scenario as they managed to kill one giant bat, and injure the other as well as one of Marik's minions. Marik himself has turned out to be a total villian in the best sense of the word, sriking down the good guys and evading capture time and time again and I have no doubt that the next time they meet, there's going to be some grudges settled one way or another!

All the best! 

Tuesday, 16 February 2016

What's Next?

Hi!

Well I am back to work this morning after a rather productive week off and am thinking about the next force I am going to put together for skirmishing in the world of Aeroth.

At present, I have The Boar Company and Marik Goldhelm's retinue but am wanting to add something new to the mix.

 The Boar Company

Looking at the two existing forces, I do think they need one or two more additions each to round them out a bit. I also need to make some Dramatise Personae to add interest to the game as well so hope to keep up the updates with lots of bits and bobs over the coming weeks.

Marik Goldhelm's Retinue

But what warband should I start next? Aeroth is full of weird and wonderful races to choose from so I think I will need to spend a little bit of time with pen and paper to draw up some designs both for more personalities and random encounters as well as a new force to mix it up with my existing figures.

Looking at the armatures and work in progress sculpts I have, it looks like there's going to be two new Dwarves coming along soon as well as some Cave Dwellers and more Horned Folk but I want to keep experimenting with the world of Aeroth too.

The Cave Dwellers will be replacing some of my early sculpts but are intended more as a wandering monster sort of thing that can appear from time to time  and pictures of all my progress will make their appearance in time!

But what about the new force? Well I want to explore some of the following:

Goblin Tribe

Orcish Horde

Harpies 

Children of the Worm

Inhabitants of Pinecliff

Scavenger Tribe

The Fallen

Elven Slavers

Daughters of Leviathan

Barbarian Tribe

Dwarven Guilders

Serpent Folk

Children of the Moon

As you can see, there's a lot to choose from and I think I may be spending a bit of time on my lunchbreak drawing up some rough designs for the assorted forces put together and will present each of them here for folks to peruse. I've already made a page for my completed warbands but might put together another for each of the forces mentioned with some images as well as lots of background on them too...

Hopefully I will get chance to post an update tomorrow but till then, all the best!

Monday, 15 February 2016

Leviathan 1000 Point Battle Report: Elves Versus Dwarves

Hi!

Well I thought I'd best make the most of my last evening of holiday by playing another game of Leviathan, this time pitting Elves against Dwarves!

Introduction

It had been a tough few weeks for the Dwarven patrol. There had been two skirmishes with the Orcish horde and while the first had been a walkover, the second had left Hrothgar badly in need of repairs for both Wargolems and his infantry had taken a beating.

To make matters worse, no sooner had he got his force moving back towards base than his scouts spotted a group of Elven raiders approaching from the desert. Quickly relaying orders to his troops, Hrothgar sounded his Thunderhammer's steam whistle and the piercing shriek echoed across the valley as the Dwarves marched out once again to do battle with the thrice cursed Elves.

The Forces

The Elven Raiders

1 Level 2 Prince, heavy armour, shield and powerlance mounted on an Earthbound Dragon

2 Earthbound Dragons, medium armour and shield plus powerlance

8 Elves, extra hand weapon, medium armour plus standard bearer and Level 1 Hero

6 Elves, medium armour, powerlance plus Level 1 Hero

1 Everhungry

1 Level 1 Sorcerer

The Dwarven Patrol

1 Level 2 Warlord, medium armour mounted in a Thunderhammer battletank

8 Dwarves, medium armour and shield plus standard bearer and Level 1 Hero

6 Dwarves, medium armour and crossbow plus standard bearer

1 Cannon plus 3 crew

2 MKI Wargolems

In addition, I also rolled on the Warrior Skills Table for the two commanding heroes. This allows you to really add a bit of character to the leaders of your forces but I wanted to keep the extra powers to a minimum so only rolled once for each.

The Dwarf got Weapon Master which increased his OC by two to an impressive 11 making him someone to be feared in close combat.

The Elven Prince got Shifting Form, an interesting ability that means when he moves, he enters and exits reality becoming an insubstantial blur. This allows him to avoid the first attack against him in close combat each turn as long as he is moving. Imagine Eldar Holofields!

Setup

Interestingly, the Elves have a massive advantage in the scouting phase but rolled poorly allowing the Dwarves to dominate the battlefield and forcing the Elves to deploy out in the open without cover.

The Battlefield

The majority of the cover was in the north and it was amongst this that the Dwarves set up their battleline and awaited the Elves advance.

Deployment

The Elves deployed in the open, as far forward as they could to minimise the time the Dwarves had to fire their artillery at them and formed up with their infantry in the centre with their Earthbound Dragons on either flank and the Everhungry summoned up to the far right.

In order to field the Everhungry demon, I had to purchase an Elven sorcerer who actually summons the beast before the game starts but was then pretty much surplus to requirement. I think in future, the beast will need keeping in reserve and actually have the sorcerer earn his keep by summoning it during the game!
  
 
Elvish Battleline

The Dwarves were determined to fight defensively and deployed at the edge of the forested area with the cannon lurking on one flank and the Thunderhammer on the other. The two Wargolems stood amongst the infantry, ready to move out and crush the opposing warbeasts and demon when the opportunity arose.

Being it was the first time I'd played against the Elves, I was interested to see how the Dwarven force I have put together would operate against it, especially as the Elves with their powerlances are really shooty which is why I wanted as much cover as possible.

 Dwarven force

On the far flank next to the building stood a mighty effigy of some sort. Game wise, it represents a standing stone nexus for Earthpower which stops Demons approaching within 15cm of it. In hindsight, I should have probably deployed around it and kept the Everhungy at bay...

Standing stone

Turn 1 Dwarves win initiative.

The Elven line sweeps forward while the stalwart Dwarves seek to make the most of the cover the terrain provides them with and cautiously moves forward.

 Elven warbeasts are fast!

The Elven Earthbound Dragons are really fast moving and catch the Dwarven troops somewhat by surprise as they hurtle forward. The result is that the flanking Wargolem blocks the cannons line of sight of the rapidly approaching Earthbound riders and they are forced to shoot at the more distant Everhungry.

 Cautious Dwarves

The Dwarven cannon lets rip but the crews aim is badly off and the massive shot simply sends up a gout of dirt off to one side of the vile beast.

At this point, I was taken aback by just how manouverable the Elves are and their movement was incredible. I may need to work it into their rules a bit more allowing their Dragons to turn 2 90 degree turns in their movement as it suits their playstyle.
BOOM! The Dwarven artillery fails to hit the mark

Turn 2 Dwarves win initiative.

Seeking to take the fight to the Elves, the two Wargolems burst out from their lines and hurtle towards the Earthbound Dragons approaching their position. Unfortunately ones charge is just too short so he has to perform a Reforming Action.


Essentially this means the unit doesn't do what it expected and is placed at a decided disadvantage for the remainder of the turn. 

I was also really pleased by the cunning activation that the Elves performed which forced the Dwarves to commit their Wargolems when they were at the utter limit of their charge range.

On the other flank the remaining Earthbound approached the Dwarven Thunderhammers flank and the Elven warriors hurried into the cover provided by a rock outcrop to avoid becoming targets for the Dwarven tanks Grapeshot Mortar.

Elven Earthbound approaches!

I can't help but feel that the Elves constantly outmanouvered the Dwarves in the early stages of the game and really made the most of their speed to their own advantage.

 Sneaking!
In the close combat phase, the Elven Prince fires his powerlance at the oncoming Dwarven behemoth but fails to hit, possibly somewhat unnerved seeing a massive ironclad brute thundering toward him.

The two crash into combat but thanks to the Elves heroic skill Shifting Form, the Dwarf is forced to forgo the customary shouldercharge and perform three basic attacks instead.

I was unsure whether the heroic skills include the heroes mount but figured it was inkeeping with the ability so decided to allow it which was handy as the shoulder charge is a terrifyingly powerful attack. (In previous games I had misread how it worked and rolled to hit when in actual fact, it automatically hits and causes two damage!)

The combat resulted in one attack being lost thanks to the Elves ability but I thought things were going to come to a head early when the Wargolem hit the Prince a glancing blow with one mighty fist but miraculously, the Elf wasn't damaged. In return, the Earthbound attacked the Wargolem but failed to dent it's mighty armour.

Onto the shooting phase and the second Earthbound lets rip with a jet of flame at the reforming Wargolem and succeeds in damaging it when the inferno of dragonfire fuses the war engines hip immobilising it for a second time in two games!

 FWOOSH! A Wargolem finds itself on the recieving end of dragons breath...

In reply, the Dwarven cannon again opens fire on the Everhungry and once again misses the brute, much to the chagrin of the Dwarf crewmen.

 BOOM! Once again the Everhungry is missed by the Dwarven cannon!

On the far flank, the third Earthbound rider lets rip at the Dwarven tank with a blast from his powerlance on the small chance it will find a weak spot in the machine's armour but the bolt crackles by above the war engines smokestacks.

The last act of the turn sees the Thunderhammer opening fire on the only unit it can see, the Elven powerlancers. Despite hitting two of the Elven infantry, they miraculously survive and emerge from the crater somewhat soot covered but no worse for wear.

 KABOOM! The Elves prove very difficult to kill!

Turn 3 Elves win initiative.


The Everhungry, seemingly immune to cannon fire, charges at the Dwarven crossbowmen lurking at the edge of the undergrowth and while they elect to stand and shoot, the sight of the terrifying demon rushing towards them unnerves even the most stalwart Dwarven heart and they take to their heels, avoiding the beast.

The Dwarven warriors rush towards the Everhungry in hopes of driving the beast back from their ranged combat troops and artillery emplacement.

The State of play at the start of turn three

On the other flank the Earthbound charges the Thunderhammer who cannot even fire at the approaching beast as it is within it's minimum range!

 RAWR! The Everhungry charges the Dwarven crossbowmen

 The Dwarves run away!

The Elven infantry also moves forward with the warriors moving towards the developing melee on the far flank while the Powerlance wielding Elves move forward into firing range of the Dwarven Warrior unit.

Close combat looks like it's going to be bloody this turn as the Dwarven commander, seeing the approaching Earthbound takes a swing at the beast from the top of his tank but misses, despite his heroic skill. In return the Elven rider attempts to strike back but misses too and the Earthbound, needing to roll 18 or less to hit the battletank promptly rolls a 19 and misses!

Epic Combat Ensues with a Dwarf hero jumping out of his tank to attack a charging dragon!

I love how the close combat works in Leviathan with the heroes striking first, followed by infantry and cavalry and lastly the lumbering warbeasts. The Elf was rather unlucky as a tank as an OC of 0 so if it can get into close combat, it stands a better chance of damaging it.

In the centre, the Elven prince tries to hit the Wargolem but fails and in return, the Wargolem wounds his ride resulting it Fury and the pain maddened dragon rampaging uncontrolled for the rest of the turn and losing its chance to fight back.

FURY! The Earthbound decides to rampage after taking a big metal fist to the face.

In the shooting phase, the Powerlancers fire on the Dwarven warriors, scoring 5 hits, two of which are perfect 1's and another two which cause damage resulting in the Dwarven unit going down to half strength and being forced to take a Resolve test which they pass, despite seeing their kin struck down in such an underhanded manner.

Shooty Elven villains

Zap! The smell of singed beard floats across the battlefield.

In return the Dwarven cannon fires at the Earthbound next to the immobilised Wargolem and succeeds in hitting but the beast is undamaged. It just doesn't seem to be the Dwarves day! In return the Earthbound lets rip with another blast of dragonfire at the immobilised Wargolem but this time fails to damage the warmachine.

 BOOM! A hit at last for the Dwarven artillery but once again fortune smiles on the Elves.

The last action of the turn sees the fleeing Dwarven crossbowmen rally and begin to reform.

Turn 4 Elves win initiative.

Uncontrolled Monster: The Elven prince's Earthbound is uncontrolled due to the previous turns Fury and it rampages into the Wargolem.

The second Earthbound sidesteps the immobilised Wargolem and makes a beeline for the now rather isolated Dwarf cannon. Once again the sheer speed of the Elven advance is staggering.

The remaining Dwarven warriors prepare to sell their lives dearly.

The now much reduced Dwarven warriors decide to charge the Everhungry to give their kin chance to prepare for its attack and pass their Resolve, charging at the beast, which turns with a nimbleness that belies its bulk and charges back towards them.

The Elven warriors charge into combat with the Thunderhammer with the hope that they can swarm it under with sheer numbers.

A mighty melee!

I have found the process for infantry attacking targets with a Hard armour rather problematic. The Hard armour means that the target is impervious to any hit unless it is also a Hard category too. I've decided that this is a bit unfair and allow the infantry to attack as normal and on the roll of a natural 1, they do succeed in causing a point of damage. Its a small chance but better than nothing! 

I may yet revisit this to make infantry attacking warbeasts and stuff a bit more worthwhile...
 
In the mighty melee, the Dwarven commander, who seems determined to kill himself, aims another swing at the Earthbound in front of his tank and manages to damage the beast resulting in Fury again!

The Elven crewman hangs on for dear life and cannot attack back this turn. The Infantry pile in and succeed in causing a point of damage to the tank, destroying its gun.

The Dwarven warriors are met head on by the Everhungry and it picks up one of the stalwart Dwarves and eats him while his kin helplessly hack at its unearthly flesh. The units champion does succeed in hitting the beast but cannot damage it.

Meanwhile the Wargolem strikes at the rampaging Elven prince's Earthbound and manages to break the beasts jaw which doesn't help the beasts mood.

In the shooting phase, the Powerlancers open up on the combat between the Dwarf warriors and Everhungry, secure in the knowledge that their magical weapons cannot damage the demon. Of the four bolts of energy that strike the combat, two hit the Everhungry and fail to damage it while the other two kill another pair of Dwarves leaving the champion by himself. At this point, he fails a Resolve test and flees but is run down and consumed by the demon!

Turn 5 Dwarves win initiative.

At this point, things are looking a bit grim for the Dwarves, yes they've damaged the warbeasts of the Elves but in return, they are looking like they are going to take a further mauling this turn.

The crossbows, seeing their kin eaten by the Everhungry elect to stand and shoot at the beast which charges them but this time the Dwarves hold and bolt after bolt thuds into it's flesh but mere steel cannot stop the Everhungry!

 Raargh! The Dwarven crossbowmen shoot at the charging Everhungry!

On the far flank, the Earthbound also charges the cannon but finds itself facing an outraged artillery crew who stand to fight the beast, blasting a volley of shot at it as it approaches. Once again the artillery can't seem to hit and the shot screams by the dragon as it crashes into combat.

In the centre, the Elven Prince has regained control of his Earthbound and strikes at the Wargolem but misses and in return, the mighty machine stuns the dragon and smashes the Prince to paste!

The melee between the Everhungry and crossbowmen sees blows traded but no damage but the same cannot be said for the fight between the Cannon crew and the Earthbound! The rider hits the crew twice but fails to damage them and in return, the crew hit the dragon and break it's jaw, halving its attacks. The beast in return fails to hit the stalwart crew.

The final action of the game sees the Dwarven commander strike the Earthbound rider twice but fail to damage him and in return the Earthbound and infantry fail to do any further damage to the machine.

The end of play!

Conclusion

Well, another great game and it swung backwards and forward throughout! I do think that the Elves had the upper hand though as the Dwarven infantry was decimated, it's vehicles either damaged or immobilised and the Elves about to finish them off!

Once again the game has given me lots of food for thought including some bits and bobs to make the game play more fairly for those who don't have anti armour weapons. As I mentioned in the introduction, I think that in hindsight, the Dwarves should have set up around the standing stone which would have kept that Everhungry at bay long enough for the artillery to blast it to pieces.

The Wargolems managed to hold up the lightning advance of the Elves and it was bad luck that saw one of them immobilised so early on in the game. I do think that playing against different races forces different choices of army selection though as I could have done with more long ranged firepower to blast the Elves to paste before they got close enough to destroy my force.

The Elves did everything right, using their speed to their advantage but I do think the Demon rules need work as they should need summoning during the game which would add an extra tactical level to the game too,

Still, I am really pleased that I am getting the hang of things with Leviathan and hope to post more battle reports soon as well as being able to start fielding actual miniatures rather than just having cardboard counters!

There's also a couple of games of Song of Blades and Heroes in the offing once I put together some objective pieces and some more models too so watch this space!

All the best!