Monday, 8 February 2016

Reviving a Ruleset


Well the second week of my holiday has begun and I have actually got some time to do hobby related activities and have been ruminating on the world of Aeroth.

Back in 1995 Grendel produced a game called Leviathan. It was set in a post apocalyptic fantasy world and I was hooked on the setting that the rulebook hinted at. At the time I never took too much time over the rules themselves and as with so many games, Leviathan soon fell by the wayside and vanished into the land of forgotten games.

Skip forward to 2008 and I was off to university and one of the few hobby items I took with me was my well thumbed copy of Leviathan and so began a project that was picked up and put down repeatedly over the following years as I attempted and failed to build a few playable warbands and actually have a bash at playing the game.

Leviathan: An Obsession

Part of the problem with the game was it felt unfinished, there were poorly explained elements and the much hoped for expansion, Earthpower which was due to introduce new forces, rules for magic, flying and siege warfare never surfaced and never will as the only draft copy of it was lost when the the owner's PC broke.

Needless to say this, combined with the massive chunky miniatures required and the 8x4 board it needed to be played resulted in utter failure of all attempts to revive the game. But here I am in 2016, eight years since I last put much thought into the game, re-reading my trusty copy of Leviathan.

The intervening years have given me some pause for thought as I think that the core concept of Leviathan was brilliant and still deserves attention and having re-read the rules, I think there is actually a great game hiding and largely forgotten. Similarly, the setting of Aeroth is just so rich and could do with further exploration but what to do about it.

Well, after a great deal of thought, I have decided to delve into the setting and see what I can come up with. I've been rummaging out all my old notes and have come up with a few ideas I want to explore both for a revised version of the rules and for an expanded setting of a post apocalyptic world inhabited by equally interesting peoples. Before I get carried away though, I have made a few decisions with regards to the game itself. 

As is the rules are good but it really doesn't suit a 28mm scale game so I have decided to scale it to 15mm as it will allow me to field large war engines and monsters without needing a huge gaming surface. This doesn't mean that I won't be exploring some skirmish type games in 28mm scale but that's for another day as I want to focus on getting both the background and core rules into place before I go galavanting off on a side project. With this in mind, I have made some cardboard counters of a 1000 point force for each of the existing four races and hope to play out as many games as I can using them to playtest the game as it stands and see what needs work and what works.

I am also slowly converting and painting my way through the assorted gubbins I have lying around which will allow me to field actual forces and will be showcasing them here as they develop in the coming weeks and months. I am also trying to source decent proxies for each of the existing races as well as coming up with ideas for the other races that the original rules mention...

The Core Races

The Core races are those who are featured in the rulebook as it stands and have more or less playable forces as well as developed backgrounds.

Barbarian Clans
Orcish Horde

The New Races

The new races are those who are mentioned in the background but don't currently have any gameable forces or indeed any suitable background to flesh out their backstory.

Daughters of Leviathan
Sea Demons
Children of the Worm
Knights of the Eternal Light
The Fallen
The Horned Folk
Children of the Moon
Scavenger Clans

As you can see there's loads needing done just for background but I have to really get cracking with exploring the rules and trying to tie down a more playable version of the game and check to make sure it works as well as I want it to with the core races before I move forward with anything new. I think the best idea will be to get the rules sorted, then move onto the expansion to bring in extra elements such as magic and I will be borrowing from some of my favourite games to do so!

I suspect it's going to be quite a long term sort of a project but I do look forward to it and who knows, maybe Earthpower will make an appearance at some point too!

In the meantime, All the best and expect a battle report soon!


  1. Excellent! I look forward to the battle report. I might need to go give ebay a look for Leviathan. ;)

    1. Check out Scotia Grendels website:

      They've got the complete rulebook available for free download!

      All the best!

    2. Awesome just checked it out. I had one more question. I noticed your review of the Chronopia rules. I was intrigued by the unit qualities. Outposts hordes phalanx ect. Could you by chance give me arun down of those and what they do for the unit?

    3. Hi!

      I will need to rummage out the rules as I've not looked at them for ages!

      All the best and do check out the battle report I just posted!

    4. Ya if it's not to much trouble I would greatly appreciate that. Battle report was ACE!

    5. I shall see what I can do and you never know, I may even be tempted to do some Chronopia in 15mm!

      All the best!