Juhlii started quietly, with the Upirian vampires shifting their forces around the map. C banner brought the previously unknown village of Felton into the fold, but otherwise it was a fairly uneventful month for Upiria.
Da Squig Teef expanded da Gobbolands a bit, discovering more barren lands in the northeast. Exploring da Gobbolands east of Squigopolis led to the discovery of an isolated tomb. Further investigation suggested that it marked the burial site of a long-forgotten hero, but it was also discovered that not only had the tomb been looted a long time ago, but that the catacombs had been claimed by a group of Dark Elves as their lair. The goblins were attacked by the vile creatures, but were able to fend them off; minimal casualties were suffered by each side as the dark elves retreated back into the tunnels. Squig Teef C, after spending a month softening up the skaven fortress of Gutsticken, launched an assault and nearly overran the fortress. Losses were suffered on both sides of the conflict, and the goblins were pushed back from Gutsticken’s walls.
The Black Skull Empire prepared for war, sending advance scouts into Voltal and Ogretown. Following their scouts, banner A marched upon Ogretown, only to witness the cowardly ogres retreat into the city, hunkering down for a siege that wouldn’t come. Faced with the bitter reality of a siege situation, the Black Skull withdrew, returning to the village of Dalton. Banner D charged into Voltal, surprising the local militia and overpowering the city, despite suffering heavy losses in the process. The Black Skull Empire claimed Voltal for their empire and expelled the minor Kristanzian royalty that were running the place to die in the woods outside the city. Banner B left Desperation to take up residence at the Bleeding Spire, and Banner C traveled southeast into their newly found village of Klump.
Clan Spearhavok split their runners between internal recon and expansion. Amberkill sent scouts into Deadwood, where they found evidence of goblin spies, calling for the banner to advance into the village to reinforce the skaven presence. Batterskull sent spies to investigate the goblin siege on Gutsticken, but ended up advising Batterskull’s engineers to hold back and let the militia at Gutsticken fend for themselves. Cravenfur’s scouts discovered a village of Beastmen called Narrat on the shores of the lake northeast of Goblintombs, and Cravenfur’s rats advanced, crushing the beastmen’s weak local forces while suffering minimal casualties themselves. The Doomrat banner’s night runners reported a city of high elves southwest of Foundwater and, not to be outdone by Cravenfur, immediately called for an all out attack on the elven city of Glortilyhuir. The elves retreated within their city’s walls but the Doomrats were not to be slowed, clambering up the walls and through the city’s sewers at great cost in a direct assault that quickly brought the city to its knees.
The Kingdom of Ogredeblarg had a rough month, finding a village northeast of Fort Ogre but little else. Banner B found themselves drenched and held down by a full month of torrential downpours in the area surrounding Ogreville, while banner C remained in Ograda, suffering from a strange sickness that swept through the village.
Note: Rather than running this turn 1 player at a time, we opted to try a 1 phase at a time approach. Things are a little more reactionary, but I will still be describing the actions of one faction at a time. Just so it makes sense when I mention things happening in response to something I haven’t yet mentioned.
The tribe of da Squig Teef grew even bolder in Juhn, expanding da Gobbolands to the north and east. Hot off their victory over the helpless villagers of Gromville, banner C (we really need cooler names for these banners) scouted Gutsticken, the fortress west of Gromville. Banner D sent scouts to spy on the Amberkill skaven banner in Deadwood, discovering their secrets and then slipping back to warn the rest of the goblins. Banner A fled the wizard’s tower of Vicious Tim into their expanded Gobbolands, B similarly advanced into the barrens, and D opted to stay put after learning what awaited them in Deadwood. C, not realising that the Amberkill skaven had sent scouts into their midst, advanced upon Gutsticken. When the local skaven militia retreated into the fortress and prepared for a siege, the goblins proceeded to attack the walls with a combination of thrown boulders and ballista fire.
Clan Spearhavok, plagued by the Black Skull Empire in the north and da Squig Teef tribe in the east, split their scouts between unknown territory and reconnaisance. Amberkill banner sent scouts into Gromville, learning the details of the goblins deployed there and returning undetected. Batterskull discovered more barren territory southeast of Khorne’s End while the Doomrat scouts followed the river to find an easily subjugated village to the west of Foundwater. Naming it Riverspitz, the scouts returned to their banner. The Cravenfur banner sent scouts to the northwest, where they discovered a small series of villages on the river; they submitted immediately to Clan Spearhavok’s rule. After returning to their banner, the scouts learned that the villages had soon after been visited by the Black Skull Empire, and had switched allegiances without a thought! Naming the villages Traitorgulch, banner Cravenfur advanced into the village, daring the Black Skull to return in number. Amberkill, left alone by the goblins of banner D, advanced upon Gromville – now devoid of any serious Squig Teef presence – and claimed it as their own, simultaneously cutting off the potential escape route of the goblins besieging Gutsticken. Batterskull opted to remain in Khorne’s End, ready to provide backup to Gutsticken should it be needed, and the Doomrats remained in Foundwater, satisfied that Rivespitz was well protected from the Black Skull Empire by Death Drop Chasm to the north.
Upiria devoted its energies to expansion during the month of Juhn, discovering and claiming the city of Nilbog northwest of Thorns, and the village of Dimtide on the southern cape of Upiria, just south of Lachrymarum. Banner A discovered that the Fallow continued to the east, and opted to remain where it was, and banner D’s scouts located a city of High Elves to the east! Attempting a surprise attack, D crept in across the one time battlefields of the Fallow, only to be stumbled upon by withdrawing Elven forces that had spotted Upiria’s scouts. Battle erupted with neither side fully prepared, and the bloody mess lasted for several days, but in the end the High Elves were able to fight the Upirian banner to a draw, with heavy losses on both sides. The Elves retreated into the city of Athanel, and Upiria’s D banner retreated back into the Fallow.
The Black Skull Empire opted for an aggressive month, expanding east towards the Kingdom of Ogredeblarg and south towards Clan Spearhavok. Banners A and C found and advanced upon two villages, naming them Dalton and Vile. Banner A was only too happy to leave the brigands of the Cursed Passage behind them. Banner B sent scouts into a series of villages southwest of them that had been newly-claimed by the skaven of Clan Spearhavok, briefly winning over the villages until the Cravenfur banner returned later in the month. Not to be so easily dismissed themselves, Banner B advanced upon Traitorgulch. Banner D discovered a surviving village-state of Kristanzians on the river southeeast of the Pillar of Skulls, and proceeded to launch an attack of their own, only to be repelled by the Kristanzians after their battle resulted in a draw. Black skull casualties were fairly light. The battle of Traitorgulch went even less smoothly, with the Black Skull Empire suffering fairly heavy losses, and the Cravenfur banner losing a number of stormvermin, including Fangleader Gristlekill. After a bitter and bloody conflict, both sides were forced to withdraw from Traitorgulch, but the villages remained a part of Clan Spearhavok’s growing empire.
Our ogre general is still MIA, so the Kingdom of Ogredeblarg had another fairly low key turn, expanding its borders without conflict. With da Squig Teef advancing from the south and the Black Skull growing more aggressive in the west, however, it looks unlikely that Ogredeblarg will be able to maintain its policy of non-aggression come Juhlii.
With the foul winter behind them, the dark forces rising in former Kristanz rushed to expand their empires.
The goblins of da Squig Teef tribe discovered a Wizard’s Tower in the northwestern Gobbolands, and approached it with visions of glory. Unfortunately, the wizard occupying the tower did not take kindly to being interrupted by goblins, and challenged the force’s shaman to a duel. The wizard was far more powerful than the ambitious goblin realised, and the shaman – masterful as his minions considered him – was summarily slain. Elsewhere in the realm, da Squig Teef goblins expanded the Gobbolands to the southeast, and marched upon two villages in the west, both of which submitted easily to their rule.
The Upirian Vampires, having plenty of room to breathe on the former Kristanz’s southern peninsula, set out to expand their territory with little concern for the other realms. Their scouting parties were largely successful, discovering a city – Thorns – and a village – Lachrymarum. One undead scouting unit heading east did manage to get confused, reporting back after a day’s reconnaissance with precise details describing the location and nature of Upiria’s own Bloodstone, a fortress in the realm’s southwest region.
Clan Spearhavok , upon witnessing the tribe of da Squig Teef advancing upon them from the east, sent night runners into one of da Squig Teef’s newly conquered villages and managed to gather detailed information regarding the enemy’s banner. The battle that followed was quick and vicious, with the Grey Seer Blisterfur leading his fellow rats to a glorious slaughter. Rat Ogres tore into a regiment of goblins while the hell pit abomination made short work of a unit of squig hoppers and moved on to tear through some trolls. The dreaded 13th spell was unleashed on a second goblin regiment, reducing much of the regiment to twisted corpses. The goblins hadn’t even the time to name the village before it was ripped from them and rechristened Goblintombs. Elsewhere in the realm, Clan Spearhavok discovered 2 more villages and an independent city state of Khorne. The first two submitted easily, but the Khorne city was a close battle. Fortunately, casualties were fairly low, and the remaining skaven settled in to await new orders in the city now known as Khorne’s End.
The Black Skull Empire arrived late to the party and started off small, exploring the Blight to the northeast and discovering that it houses innumerable bands of brigands! The banner’s baggage was lost, but no casualties were suffered, and a dangerous threat is now well known to chaos. A village was discovered to the southeast and named Desperation, while a second unit of scouts fell ill, failing to learn anything useful and losing a couple of scouts to the strange sickness. A barren chasm was found to the southwest.
Finally, the Ogre Kingdom of Ogredeblarg did some scouting and found a variety of new locations. Our Ogre general has gone missing for the time being, so we’re pretty much just proxying his turns and avoiding combat.
Note: A few names and places are likely to change before too long…
The year of the Shrieking Eagle was a dark one for the failing Kristanz Empire. A winter filled with bad omens and mysteriously slain livestock led to infighting amongst the royal family, eventually resulting in a major schism. Betrayals and backstabbings quickly ramped up into formal attacks, and the lesser lords – faced with an imminent civil war – opted to break off into independent city-states in and effort to avoid being drawn into the battle. By midsummer, the Kristanz Empire was no more, having dissolved into a war-torn nightmare.
The lesser lords of Kristanz were not the only ones to respond to the civil war, but where they saw disaster, various other factions saw opportunity. As the equinox approached, dark forces rose up to carve out realms of their own.
In the far North, the Ogre Kingdom of Blargdeblarg expanded their plateau-based mercenary camps to conquer the surrounding area.
The Binkeldebap goblin tribes exploded out of their caves in the central highlands to claim a territory of their own.
An army of the undead rose up out of a former battlefield in the South Eastern peninsula, driven by the Upirian vampires.
Finally, what had appeared to be small, isolated skaven raiders in the South West turned out to be Clan Skitterblood’s advance scouts; it took less than a week for them to carve out a realm of their own.
The winter season provided more than enough time for each of these factions to cement their hold, while preventing any sizable retaliation by the former Kristanzians. With the spring equinox near at hand, each faction prepares to make their move. The year of the Shrieking Fox is upon this once-glorious empire. What will the next several months bring? Glory? Panic? New Dark Overlords? Only time will tell.
So. It’s early May, most of the snow is gone (what can I say? That’s Northern Ontario for you), and our Yu Jing player will soon be heading back to Toronto for the summer (the fool!), which means we’ll likely be shaking things up a bit. We probably don’t want to get too far ahead of him in Mordheim, so it’s time to find something else to play in between Infinity games. We’ve been itching to get in some more warhammer fantasy, and last summer’s homebrew 40k campaign was a blast, so we figured we’d look into doing something similar. Enter Mighty Empires. The old 1990 version of Mighty Empires used to be available free (rules and map tiles) through various GW sites, so that’s what we’re going to be using. A couple of us are in the process of reading through the rules, and I’ve just finished the first version of the map tiles:
I used spray adhesive to mount the tiles onto foamcore with mixed results. I’d definitely wear gloves next time, and I think I’d go with a slightly heavier paper stock. Also, we’re going to need a place we can leave it set up, which during the school year would be a problem. If we decide to do this again, or if I make a new set of tiles at some point, I’ll likely use adhesive sheet magnets instead, and then track down a magnetic whiteboard to hold the map. (I’d have done that this time if I’d thought of it before I was halfway finished. Grin.)
Anyway, we’re looking forward to this; we’ll have to make some tweaks to the rules as the classic Mighty Empires was released during 3rd edition, but I’ll try to post our solutions to such issues as they come up.
Wish us luck!
Ever since those rat ogres I painted, melee weapons just bring carnage to my mind, and this guy is no exception. Might have gone a little overboard, but maybe not. I mean, a skaven tearing through an enemy warband with fighting claws? He wouldn’t be tidy.
So last weekend (as in, just over a week ago) the usual group tried out mordheim. Once again all the fuss that were showing up were up for a skirmish game, so since we’d played infinity the previous week we opted to give mordheim a shot. We got a couple of games in, the first being a defend the treasure sort of deal with one player defending against the rest of us, and the second being a wyrdstone snatch and grab with the five of us split into two uneasy alliances.
P brought a vampire and some other undead leading some zombie henchmen.
Z brought five orks.
M brought norsemen. Other M brought a cult of the possessed.
I brought a skaven Warband consisting of 5 heroes and 3 giant rats. We had decided to house rule a starting limit of 5 heroes, even to factions that can usually start with 6.
My first battle went poorly, with my night runner starting on the second floor of a building and falling on his knife attempting to reach the ground floor. Yep, that’s right, the sum total of my night runner’s contribution to that battle was about an inch and a half of horizontal movement, followed by a three inch fall. I quickly got almost everybody else in over their heads, and only my two black skaven managed to do okay. Okay being not dying. And one of them managed to scale a wall and drop a possessed, so that was good.
The second game went a little better. I redistributed my gear a bit (like giving the warplocks to a skaven that is a decent shot…), and leveled up my one successful black skaven beforehand (he became a master of the art of silent death). Where my first game mostly involved me getting knocked around, the second was largely me dominating the cult of the possessed, with a little vampire slaying after the possessed had run off.
By the end of the evening my sorcerer had broken a leg but healed okay, and my assassin adept has developed a nervous condition. Balanced out by my black skaven turning into a skaven superhero, and my sorcerer slowly developing into a murder machine. I just scooped him some fighting claws to go with the black fury that he rolled for his spell. Yes, my wizard is hopefully going to work as a melee specialist.
I got a tiny bit of painting done as well over the last week, so I’ll leave off with a few shots of some infinity priming and the model I’m going to be using from here on out to represent my clawed black skaven.
I used brush on primer, which I’m having mixed feelings about, as it really isn’t bonding to the resin bases very well. I did some extra reading and it looks like forge world has at some point recommended using auto primer for resin because it has more solvent in it, and so should provide a better bond. As it stands, the brush on stuff covered everything, but it comes off pretty easy…
And the black skaven:
That’s right, it’s time for a little change of pace here at rats east. It’s been ages, but I finally did a little painting, making a bit of progress on the hell pit abomination that I haven’t touched in months.
The spikes are just a really bright green over black, the same method as I used when I put warpstone armour on my warlord. The paint is nothing special (apple brand, perhaps?); that’s it brushed onto my workspace in the bottom left of all the photos.
The metal is done with some vallejo ‘oily steel’ that my wife got me for Christmas (first time using it!) and the wood is some gw base colour that sounds like a droid from an old republic game (kv88, maybe? No real idea, really). I’m looking forward to adding some diluted green, along with some other brown shades and some washes, and seeing what kind of effects I can get. Till next time!
So another couple of busy weeks gone by; what’s been happening in hobbyland? Well my one group finally got in some pathfinder (2 games), and also ordered ourselves some smallish infinity armies. My regular warhammer group got in some fun fantasy games, and we’re looking to try out infinity tomorrow evening. I’ve actually managed to get some modelling done; no painting, though. On the rare moments when I had done time, I didn’t feel like painting what’s already basecoated, and it’s been way too cold (-25 to -55 degrees Celsius with the wind chill) to spray anything outside. Definitely giving serious consideration to getting or building a spray booth in the basement for next winter, as I’ve picked up a couple fun models (my infinity squads, Skweel, some jezzails, an old rackham wolfen and so on), and I can’t get beyond building them.
And how has all this looked?
One final fun project is the addition of some space wolves to my space marines force. As I’ve mentioned in the past, the Unyielding are a lost-in-space sort of chapter, which grants some opportunity for me to throw some other chapter units into the mix. I just finished putting jump packs in some space wolves so that I can field them as Unyielding vanguard veterans. And voila!
Warhammer fantasy tonight, and I took what the internet would call a bad army. No skavenslaves, no clan rats, just a monster, some beefed stormvermin, and a few jezzails to eat up my remaining points. The internet in my experience, would see that as pretty terrible, but it served me great tonight!
5 player team game; Daemons/goblins vs ogres/vampire counts/skaven. 3000pts per side. I brought Queek Headtaker, 29 upgraded stormvermin with a mortar team, and a hell pit abomination. 3 jezzails burned up my leftover points (they didn’t accomplish much, but they did okay) for a final total of 994.
Just some shots of the game progressing.
They went first, and I triggered my storm banner. It only lasted for their player turn, but probably saved a lot of our units. I had a bit of bad luck with my own shooting, but mostly everything went great. My abomination swept through some trolls and a skull cannon and my mortar successfully gassed a daemon prince a couple of times.
Queek’s bodyguard stormed through a raging torrent to attack some daemon infantry. His challenge resulted in a dead herald of khorne after two rounds of combat, and his stormvermin took care of the rest.
The end game.
End result was a solid win for us (once we took the middle of the battlefield, it was more or less a mop up operation). I did probably the best I’ve ever done. I only lost 75 points.
At the end, I’d only lost 5 stormvermin and a jezzail…
The jezzail died to his own unstable ammunition, and 3 of the 5 stormvermin died fording the river.
Anyway, a great time had by all, a solid game, and a stormvermin unit I hope to field many more times. The rats will thrive.