Friday, February 26, 2016

Painting Update - Frostgrave

I've finally gotten around to painting my warband for Frostgrave. I've been lucky so far, so my roster hasn't changed all that much, which means I've only had a few models to paint. 

All the models are Warhammer figures - if I ever want to expand, I'll probably buy the official stuff. There's no reason not to support a game I enjoy!

First up, we've got Fayrlock the Sigilist, and his apprentice Willem.

Next are the three "professional" soldiers in the warband; Karl (Infantryman), Deryk (Marksman), and Pavel (Knight).

There's the adventurers; Leocantro (Treasure Hunter), Brellyn (Ranger), and Fang (Warhound).

And finally, the lowlifes; Stabbes (Thug), Reg (Thief), and Choppes (Thug).

If you noticed that the warband numbers eleven instead of the usual ten, it's because Fayrlock had a Kennel installed in his base after one of the early games, which allows him to add a Warhound to the group above the normal limit.

I decided to stick with the blank, black bases as an aesthetic choice. Frostgrave's focus on the wizards and its use of d20 dice gives it a very D&D feel, and I wanted my miniatures to look something like the pre-painted miniatures that Wizards of the Coast produces for the RPG. In fact, the Warhound is a repainted Yeth Hound from the Pathfinder miniatures line.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Leveled Out - Frostgrave AAR

I played a few games of Frostgrave last year, but the game didn't gather much traction with the usual crew. Kevyn, however, expressed some interest in playing, and picked up the necessary supplies to play. 

We decided to see how the game worked with a lower level wizard (Kevyn's 1st level Thaumaturge) against a higher level wizard (my 13th level Sigilist). We did use a handicap system, however; Kevyn's wizard and apprentice had a +1 to all their spell casting rolls, one additional treasure to place on the table, and at the end of the game would get experience points equal to 10x the difference in our wizard's levels. 

Kevyn deployed his warband, not realizing that he could get an additional soldier in each spellcaster's activation range.

My own warband set up across the table. We decided, since it was Kevyn's first game, to play a standard game - so six treasure tokens (seven including Kevyn's extra) on the table, and a five turn limit, as we were using the Bad Karma rule amendments.

The Apprentice had half of the warband advance with him - a ranger, thief, thug, and warhound. He successfully cast Fleet Feet on the warhound, increasing its movement to 10".

While my Wizard was backed up by the rest of the group - a treasure hunter, knight, infantryman, marksman, and another thug. The Wizard also successfully cast Awareness, giving my warband a +1 to initiative rolls.

Kevyn's warband started towards the center of the table as well, with his Wizard casting Shield on his Man-at-Arms.

My Wizard threw up a Shield on the Knight, and a scrum began on the left side of the table, as Kevyn's Man-at-Arms and Thug engaged my Knight and Infantryman.

My soldiers were able to grab a momentary advantage as the Infantryman damaged and pushed the Man-at-Arms back. Despite being outnumbered, Kevyn's Thug took out my Infantryman before falling to my Knight.

My Treasure Hunter, meanwhile, grabbed one of the treasure tokens and, using his Ring of Teleportation, quickly made his escape. My two Thugs also did their jobs well and grabbed a treasure token each, scoring me three in total for the game.

Kevyn had the opportunity to get a treasure off the table, but my Warhound took down the soldier carrying it. My thief tried going after the enemy Apprentice, but was stopped by an Infantryman.

Kevyn did manage to get a treasure token off the table. My Wizard and his lined up for a duel.

And two Elemental Bolts later, my Wizard and Apprentice were down and out for the count!

And in the last Soldier phase, Kevyn's Man-at-Arms and my Knight tied on their attack rolls (each scoring 21), and so managed to take each other out at the last moment.

Unfortunately for Kevyn, his casualties saw the death of his Infantryman and Man-at-Arms, both of whom were replaced by Thugs. He did manage to secure a Fate Stone, however.

My own warband saw the Knight get badly wounded, so he'll be out for the next game. I did manage to get some more gold and a variety of scrolls and grimoires, but I spent the levels Fayrlock gained to improve his spells.

Despite the difference in levels, Kevyn enjoyed the game and saw that a high shoot roll for a spell like Elemental Bolt can take out a wizard in one hit, especially if the wizard has taken some hits previously. He expressed his interest in playing some more Frostgrave.

The handicap system we used worked well, and I've decided to add it to my ongoing "rules changes" document.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Graveyard Shift - Strange Aeons AAR

Last week, I decided I needed a break from Kings of War, and instead played a few games of Strange Aeons with Carl and Kevyn using the 2nd Edition demo kit

Carl and I played the first game, and Carl and Kevyn played the second. The last game, between Kevyn and I, was probably the one where we had the strongest grasp on the rules, so I decided to take pictures then. 

Apologies for the unpainted terrain and miniatures. The recent weather hasn't been conducive to getting any priming/painting done. 

The table setup was the same for all three games. The Threshold agents and the Lurkers came on the short table edges and the objective was to fight until the last enemy was dead.

The Threshold agents consisted of: 
James Blackwood (Character) - Tommy Gun, .45 Pistol, Cleaver
Hazel Ashton (Agent) - Double-Barreled Shotgun, Knife
Howard Philip (Civilian) - .22 Pistol, Knife

And on the Lurker side:
Cult Leader - Doubled Barreled Shotgun, Cleaver
Cultist - .22 Pistol
Cultist - Knife

Having realized just how powerful the Fishman could be (he's a monster in close combat, and can cause humans to go insane just by standing next to them), James and Howard focused their fire on the shambling creature. The briny-smelling body quickly collapsed to the floor, riddled with bullet holes.

Things didn't go nearly as well for Hazel. She had tried moving up behind one of the smaller tombs to ready her shotgun for when the Lurkers got closer.

Suddenly, the knife-wielding Cultist appeared at her side and shanked her before she could let out a cry of alarm.

The fearless Agent Blackwood leaped over the tombstones and fired two bursts from his Tommy Gun on automatic at the pistol-armed Cultist and the Cult Leader.

The gunfire easily cut down the hapless cultist, but went right over the head of the diminutive Leader!

A malicious smile on his face, the Leader pulled one trigger on his Double-Barreled Shotgun, hitting James and putting him on his back.

And the second barrel left a red smear on the damp grass of the graveyard's grounds.

Too far away to realize that both of the Threshold agents assigned to this mission were dead, Howard took aim at the last Cultist, and put him down.

Emboldened by his own actions, H.P. decided to then charge the Cult Leader, thinking he could handled the dwarf.

But the civilian went down with a cleaver in his head. The Lurkers (what remained of them, anyway) survived to perform whatever dark ritual that brought them to the graveyard in the first place.

Were this a real campaign for Strange Aeons, now would be the point at which we'd figure out what injuries/rewards the Threshold agents would get (probably not much on the latter, and a whole lot of the former!).

Strange Aeons is definitely a bloody, fast game, with humans able to die very quickly, especially if they've gone insane and have either fallen to the ground or panicked and fled.

I'm hoping that we'll see more releases for the game in the future.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Painting Update - Wargods of Aegyptus, Guild Ball, European Village

Here's another update from the painting table. 

I completed another unit from my Wargods of Aegyptus project. 

This is technically an 11-strong unit of Asar Warriors with hand weapons, shields, and medium armor. The unit Champion, which is bought independently, is equipped in the same way and is placed in between the Musician and the Standard Bearer.

This is the second unit in my small warband of Dispossessed (followers of Osiris and Isis) for Wargods. I know just have to paint the characters - the Harbinger, Hero, Master of Words, and Priestess of Isis - and that'll be the core done. From there, I'll move onto some units and characters from other races. Probably Tethru and Sebeki.

I'm also pretty pleased with the blue/bronze color scheme. I've been considering doing the same for the other races, but decided against it. I think it'll look better if each race has their own scheme. For the Tethru, I'm thinking of using gold and purple, and green and tan for the Sebeki.

I also worked on my Union team for Guild Ball. Including Mist, this puts me at seven Union players - just shy of the eight player limit for tournaments. I'm going to be using this team for the foreseeable future, as I'm planning on running them in a tournament later in April.

One of these players - Decimate, on the right in the back row - can play for the Masons, so that gives me more options for my original team. Gutter, Fangtooth, and Rage (front-left, back-left, and back-middle, respectively) can't play for the Masons. They can, however, all play for the Brewers, as can Hemlocke, the other Union player I'm considering picking up as my eighth. I wonder if that's a sign as to what my third Guild Ball team should be, sometime in the future...

When I put up my blog post about painting Mist, I complained about the quality of the paints I used - Privateer Press' "Beaten Purple" and Citadel's Blood Red. To replace these, I used Vallejo's Game Model "Hexed Lichen" and Citadel's "Wazdakka Red." While the Hexed Lichen is great, I wouldn't want to use Wazdakka Red any more than necessary.

Additionally; back in August of last year, I talked about a few buildings I was working on for some WWII terrain. While other projects have taken up most of my painting time, I have been working on the buildings on and off, and finally managed to finish them.

The fence came together nicely, with some simple painting and washes.

The miscasting is still noticeable on some pieces, however. But it's easy to miss at arm's length.

The Barn House looks great, although I did skip painting the interior.

The same goes for the battle-damaged Continental House.

And a Western European Barn. 

These buildings ended up being pretty great, and I'm looking into picking up at least the rest of the buildings in the series, either whole or battle-damaged. This comes at the cost of realizing that the Battlefront building I bought is far bigger than the MkIV buildings - it's so large, I need to remove the top floor just to get in into scale!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Local Trouble - Heroes of the Aturi Cluster AAR

There's been some interest in trying out the Heroes of the Aturi Cluster campaign for X-Wing. Kevyn had the chance to try out the rules solo during the recent blizzard, and had some pretty positive things to say about it. So last week he set up the introductory scenario.

Rebel Command: "Welcome to the Outer Rim, pilots. Our convoy is currently en route to a hidden Rebel Base in the Parmel Sector, and you'll be on escort duty until we arrive.  

We've picked up a group of enemy signals in the nearby asteroid field; likely an Imperial patrol. Intercept these those ships, and keep them away from the convoy until we can execute a hyperspace jump to ensure our base remains hidden. 

Good luck!"

Raider Squadron
Raider One: X-Wing
Pilot: Kevyn
Callsign: Catalyst

Raider Two: Y-Wing
Pilot: Brian
Callsign: Brick

Raider One: "Heads up, Two; I've got three Eyeballs coming in fast."

Raider Two: "I seem 'em, One. Shields up and engines hot."

Raider One: "I'll take the two on the right."

Raider Two: "Leaves one for me. Hey, that one Eyeball's kinda funny looking..."

Raider Two: "One, I've got another guest at this party! And my shields are taking hits from these damn rocks!" 

Raider One: "Keep flying, Brick. I'll handle my Imp and get back over to you."

Raider Two: "Squint! Cat, you've got a Squint in your six!"

Raider One: "Damn! Command, we're going to need some backup here. We've got more Imperials than we can handle."

Raider One: "How're you doing, Two? I've got two Eyeballs wrapped up."

Raider Two: "I've gotten out of the fire. Going after the Squint."

Raider Two: "Who put all these rocks in the way?!"

Raider One: "Two, we've got another Tie coming in."

Raider Two: "I'm already up to my eyeballs in Eyeballs here, Cat!"

Raider Two: "In the clear!"

Raider One: "Careful, Brick. You've got a furball going on behind you. Don't get caught up in that."

Raider Two: "Good shooting, One! Scratch one Eyeball."

Raider One: "Two, you've got two Imps on you. Get out of there!"

Raider Two: "I can't! Too many rocks! I can't shak-AAAAAAAAAARRRRGH!"

Raider One: "Two? Two?!"

Rebel Command: "Brick's down, Catalyst. Reinforcements are on the way."

Raider One: "Just need to keep them off of me..."

Raider One: "Ha! One more Eyeball down!"

Sword One: "Raider, this is Sword. Get out of here - we'll take care of the rest of these Imperials."

Rebel Command: "Great work pilots! Our convoy is safe from harm. Now we can begun operation against the Empire in this star system. 

Raider One, we've homed in on Raider Two's emergency beacon. We'll pick him up and bring him back to base."

So, Kevyn managed to score 4 experience points over the course of the game, while I lost the Munitions Failsafe modification I had bought in the hopes of getting some torpedoes. Oh well - there's always next time!