Saturday, 22 June 2019

Flaming Walkers...

I will be attending the "TRIAL BY FIRE" walking dead all out war tournament event in Stockport at the end of July... I made these burning walkers for that... I painted them a cooked pink colour to distinguish them from my normal grey walkers... and I used teddy bear stuffing to represent smoke/flames...


 I spotted this striking field of poppies whilst out doing deliveries in Derbyshire near Marsh Lane this week.

Frostgrave - The Ravages of co-operative campaign

For the 15th game with our current warbands we decided to play through the "Ravages of Time" - a three part mini cooperative campaign from the Frostgrave Folio expansion book.
After all this time fighting each other over the treasures of the Frozen City, we found ourselves trapped by a Vampiric Chronomaster in a sinister Pyramid... It was time to bury the hatchet and work together to escape!
The first part "The Pyramid of Decay" is played on a normal sized 3x3 board representing the bottom level of the pyramid... In the centre of the room was an ornate casket... which was a magical entrance to the next level. As we made our way in the dark to the casket we were pursued by ghouls who were emerging from holes in the floor... as we approached some items that looked like they might be treasure - it turned out that they were ghouls also! - After some minor scuffles with these creepy foes, we all made it through the portal relatively unscathed to emerge in the next level of the pyramid...
The Pyramid of Decay

Aargh! - Ghoul attack!

Orc Barbarian covering the rear from approaching ghouls whilst some Dwarves open the magic portal...
The second scenario "Chamber of Thralls" was a 2x2 room with a doorway in each corner. Each door was guarded by a vampire. The doorways were potential entrances to the final level, but there was a chance that some of the doorways weren't active - we had to search them and roll to find out!
Due to the evil Chronomatic ageing properties of the pyramid our wizards temporarily gained 20 levels between scenarios...
Our warbands appeared on the board one person at a time from the casket in the centre of the room... Working together our two Wizards moved towards one corner and took on one vampire, whilst our apprentices moved towards another... By the end of the second round both vampires had been turned to dust - we took some hits, but nothing too serious...A trap was sprung at the beginning of the third round sending a Null wave across the board attacking all magic users...Lizzy's guys were ok, but mine both took damage... luckily the first doorway that we searched was an active portal... so it wasn't long before we all made it through...

The Chamber of Thralls

Normally foes, our two Wizards move to take on a powerful vampire guard together...
The final scenario "Battle of the Pyramidion" was played on a small 12"x12" board. On a centre dias stood Lourrent the Vampiric Chronomaster himself, and his huge undead construct minion ready for battle..
We had gained another 20 levels in between scenarios again...but this time only our Wizards and Apprentices appeared in the room for the final fight - and we were automatically loosing health each round due to the accelerated aging that we were experiencing.. Whilst Lourrent stayed on the central dias he had extra protection from attacks.
Lizzy started by doing a push spell and knocking Lourrent off his dias towards my side of the board. My wizard succeeded in blasting him severely with an elemental bolt.. The Chronomaster tried to cast petrify on Lizzy's wizard - but failed. Meanwhile Lizzy's apprentice raised a zombie in front of himself distracting the construct... In round two Lizzy's wizard produced a Demon in a bottle that he had saved for just such an occasion... whilst my dudes were battering away at the Vampiric baddy with more elemental bolts... The Construct smashed the zombie into pulp, but was then set upon by the minor demon... Then Lizzy's wizard struck the killing blow on Lourrent the evil time sorcerer, freeing us all from his pyramid of doom!
Battle of the Pyramidion

This is the final battle for our current warbands. For now at least. Over 15 battles our wizards have gained around 35 levels, become pretty rich and powerful, and are tooled up with all kinds of magic items, potions and weapons.
We are going to start again with new level 0 warbands. A Demonologist for me, and a Necromancer for Lizzy. Over these last 15 games, the spells that between us we used the most were definitely LEAP, ELEMENTAL BOLT and TELEKINESIS. To make things interesting I am not going to take any of those spells with my new wizard. We are going to work through the ten part "Thaw of the Lich Lord" campaign.

Derbyshire - Walking the Edges....

....Froggatt and Curbar Edges specifically!

Friday, 7 June 2019

UK Games Expo 2019


Here are just a few of my highlights from this years UK Games Expo at the NEC in Birmingham...
I went for all 3 days this year. For accommodation we did the same as last year and filled a large local AirB&B house with friendly gamers from Sheffield.
I took quite a lot of "old" games to sell at the Bring and Buy sale this year, so most of Friday morning was spent queuing to put stuff in, then queuing to get in to have a look around, then queuing to pay. It was crazily busy, but it was worth it... I managed to get cheap copies of City of Iron II, Lancaster, Guilds of London and Shadows over Normandie... which are all games I was on the look out for.
The rest of the weekend entailed a lot of wandering around the trade halls looking at stuff, demoing games, meeting up with friends in the open gaming area to play games... then going back to the house in the evenings to play more games. A great time was had.
Architects of the West Kingdom - really nice worker placement euro style boardgame.

10mm scale mdf sci-fi scenery from TTCombat suitable for Dropzone Commander...

What a great idea! - Ready to play miniatures from Flatpack Forces...
They do army packs specifically for Dragon Rampant... plus they are working on other ranges too

Jupiter Rescue - (not one of the better games I played over the weekend)

Century: A New World - The latest boardgame in the "Century" series..
I really enjoyed this nice worker placement style game.

Porta Nigra

Just about to demo "Space Gate Odyssey"

A display of some of the upcoming Fantasy terrain that will be available via Kickstarter from Battle Systems later on this month. The buildings were indeed fantastic! - I will be following with interest when more information is released.

Ticket to Ride London was released at the Expo this year - a few of us Sheffield Boardgamers had a game on the oversized demo copy.

My haul of games from this year... the top two were new, and the bottom four were all bargains from the bring and buy sale.

Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Rangers of Shadow Deep - Mission 2 part 3... the top of the tower!

Rangers of Shadow Deep - Mission 2: Scenario 3 "Tor Varden - The Upper Level"
This was the last part of the second mission from the main Rangers of Shadow Deep Rulebook.. Our Rangers and companions emerge at the top of the tower of Tor Varden... There was a huge woodpile at the centre of the tower. Chained to the top of this was a prisoner waiting to be sacrificed. Guarding the tower platform were 3 Gnoll Archers, a Gnoll fighter... and a sinister Shadow Knight!
In the first turn only 3 of our characters could get out onto the platform. Alfie suggested that they should all be figures who could shoot - so it was both Rangers and an archer who came out firing their bows... Both my guys missed their targets, but Alfie's ranger hit one of the Gnoll archers with his first shot, seriously wounding him...

The rest of our crew rushed out of the stairwell at the start of the second turn... My archers failed to hit their targets again.. Alfie's conjuror fumbled his magic bolt spell, and then the baddies moved into positions where they could all finally see what was going on. At the end of the second turn we saw green fire in the distance, and realising that the tower of Tor Dargos had fallen to the forces of the Shadow Deep! All our characters had to take a Will roll...unfortunately all three of Alfie's companions were traumatised by the sight of the green fire and were now reduced to only one action per turn...
Turn 3 was more running and shooting... Alfie's conjuror used his one action to use his last magic bolt to wipe out one of the Gnoll archers..... my Man-at-arms ran at another Gnoll, but was knocked out immediately... The Shadow Knight and Gnoll Fighter moved around the wood pile to intercept my Ranger and Archer...
The Shadow Knight is really tough to beat. He has +4 fight, and any damage that is done to him by non-magic weapons is halved. Luckily for us, Alfie's Ranger had used the magic powder he found on the dead Gnoll sergeant in the last scenario to make his sword magic. Combining this with his one use ability of Frenzied attack, and a cracking dice roll, he severely damaged the Shadow knight with his first hit. My guys tried to join in... didn't do any damage, but my Warhound did manage to push back the Shadow Knight right at the end of turn 4.... this was when we saw more green fire lighting up the sky in the opposite direction to before.. the tower of Tor Hammel had also fallen to the tide of evil!! Will rolls were made again.. and some of the companions were now so terrified that they had -2 Fight for the rest of the scenario...
If the Shadow Knight is unengaged at the end of turn 5 he will sacrifice the soldier on the woodpile and then set it alight! - It was a good job then that Alfie's Ranger used his first action to blast the Shadow knight into nothingness with his one use magic bolt spell!!... we finished off the remaining Gnolls with out too much trouble... and that was it. We had retaken Tor Varden from the forces of darkness.
The top of the tower (paper printout mat using "2 minute tabletop" resources...and a coffee stirrer wood pile!)

The start of turn 1... the Rangers come out shooting!

The start of turn 2...

...turn 3... some companions are reduced to one action..

...the end of turn 4... my Warhound has just pushed back the Shadow Knight....
We earned enough experience for our Rangers to go up to level 3. This means we have slightly more recruitment points now, so we may decide to change our companions a bit before the next mission... A few of our current companions have survived 5 scenarios without being reduced to 0 health... so that means they get an extra permanent Health point, which is pretty cool!
There is one other 3 part mission in the rule book. But I also have the "Blood Moon" Mission which is suitable for level 0-5 Rangers... so maybe we will do that next...??

Tuesday, 28 May 2019

Frostgrave - The Pits of Null

A couple of weeks ago we played through "The Pits of Null" scenario from the Frostgrave Folio... There were five null pits on the table...and some Nullmen... Anyone touching the pits is immune to magic, but also cannot use magic... The Nullmen are attracted to the most powerful magic user (which was mostly Lizzy's wizard for this scenario)...every turn another Nullman appeared... we were using Ulterior Motive cards, I had "Soul Drain" and Lizzy had "The Drawing Knife".... we had a couple of wandering monsters - a Vampire and some Snakemen...
This was a very interesting game. The anti-magic pits and the Nullmen really added a fun element. Lizzy completed her objective by removing a magic dagger from a statue... my objective however was a lot more dramatic... I opened a magic trapdoor towards the end of the game and every figure on the board had to succeed a high Will roll or be moved towards the trap a number of inches equal to the number they failed their roll by, and if they ended up touching the trap they were reduced to zero health immediately!! - A bunch of figures were sucked into the trap - monsters and warband members!!

This was the last of the three scenarios from the "Sellsword" section of the Frostgrave Folio. I really enjoyed all of them, they effected our usual tactics in very interesting ways.
We have decide that we will conclude the adventures of our current warbands for now by playing through the "Ravages of Time" semi-cooperative" mini campaign that is at the back of the Frostgrave Folio.... and then we will be starting again with fresh new wizards and warbands to play through the "Thaw of the Lich Lord" big campaign...