Thursday, June 28, 2012

Victory at nGwakia Wells

We last left Sir Kev Byng, Bt., deploying his flying column as it approached nGwakia Wells. As noted previously I had co-opted this game to test some solo deployment rules for HOF Fire Team.

Well, in for a penny, in for a pound as they say so I played the entire game using the HOF Fire Team rules. As the rules were meant for Sci Fi skirmishes with up to about 50 figures per side, this presented a few challenges.

Using the Tech Level rules I crafted stats for muskets, spears, and even the Mad Mullah Faqir's fire balls. I had to modify the rules a bit to reduce the effectiveness of firearms in the hands of mounted troops too. That done it was show time.

The Albion force weighed in at 8 six figure infantry fire teams, 2 four figure cavalry teams, and 2 two figure command teams.

The Isea N Eehigh numbered 24 four figure infantry "fire" teams (they only had spear and shield), 1 single figure magic user "weapons" team, and 1 two figure command team. of these though, half of the spear teams had not made it to initial deployment.

As Sir Kev, it fell to me to set way points for my forces. Normally these rules are played on a grid, so the noting of way points can be very precise. Not so here of course, so I substituted written orders.

Being that Sir Kev is rather aggressive, and that my main goal was to get stuck right in, the plan was pretty straightforward,

Tanking advantage of the absence of the enemy's right and reserves, the four infantry companies would drive straight across the table and plunge into the enemy's center and left. The  Naal Carabiners would screen the advance against the arrival or enemy troops of our left. To do this they would occupy the hill to our left front and then skirmish with any new arrivals, falling slowly back before them.

The plan remained viable for only the first turn for no sooner had the troops set to when the enemy right suddenly appeared.

The missing enemy right arrives on turn one

As their center and left advance.
 This caused Sir Kev some dismay as his hope of smashing the enemy center and left before the right could come to their aid had been dashed.  Sir Kev set about riding along the line shifting objectives a bit.

The two companies of the 115th would hold the right and left of the wells. The Goblin Native Infantry would hold the large ruin in the settlement while the Otter Native Infantry would advance beyond the patch of brush to their front and form line to support the withdrawal of the Naal Carabiners. For their part the Carabiners would carry out their initial mission: skirmish with the enemy right and fall back slowly on the Otters.
The senior company of the 115th enters the scrub by the wells.

The Thin Red Line advances.

The Isea N Eehigh emerge from the wadis.
 As the battle developed, the orcs opened fire. Their very first volley felled the Mad Mullah Faqir. The Queen's only ranged attack capable unit was taken out with the first shots!
The Naal Carabiners form line and ascend the hill.

Sir Kev and his ADC ride the line shouting encouragement.

A half troop launch a spoiling attack driving back the Halflings.

The enemy left threaten envelopment.

Withering fire deters the enemy left.

Three rounds a minute my Orcs!
 Faced with the threat of envelopment on both flanks, Sir Kev withdrew the Goblin Native Infantry from the line to form a ready reserve. Meanwhile the enemy kept up pressure on flanks and center.

Sir Kev leads the Goblins into a reserve position.
It was at this point that the Halflings fought through the orc fire and made it into melee. One of the Chavchesters was done for. In the end though the assault was repelled.
The sole Albion casualty,

The final defeat of the enemy left.

SWMBO stops in to check on the progress of events.
 At this point the enemy reserve appeared behind their center. All along the line the Halfling war bands had been shattered. Those remaining continued attacking in a series of small rushes.

This photo gives a good idea of both the extent of Halfling losses and the piecemeal nature of their attacks.

The Naal Carabiners have fallen back to both flanks of the Otters.

A close up of the warriors of the right flank.

Steady Otter fire keeps the Halflings at bay.

Eventually the Halfling attacks stalled and the Queen withdrew her forces rather than suffer additional casualties. The final tally was one orc lost to some 30 Halflings. In "real" terms that would be about 5 orcs and 150 Halflings.

The broken nature of the terrain hampered the Halflings more than the Albion forces. The combined results of Sir Kev's fortunate pre battle scouting roll, the variable distance movement mechanics, and broken terrain meant that the Isea N Eehigh warrors assaulted the Red Coats piecemeal rather than in the coordinated fashion the Queen had intended.

In retrospect it may have been better for the Halflings to hide in the hills and force the Red Coats to come to them but that was not the sort of scenario I had intended to play test.

The early removal of the Mad Mullah Faqir was both a shock and a boon. How will his wounding affect the religious tension within the tribe? Regardless had ne not fallen the Orcs would have been in for some scary fireworks.

A fun game and with the Isea N Eehigh forced back across the Two Gala River.  Sir Kev holds the initiative but who can say what will happen next?

Hope you enjoyed the tale and thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Regiment Guinalea

The impending battle for nGwakia Wells has seen some delay, in part due to the arrival of a troopship from sunny Girvan!

The Regiment Guinalea was raised by the Emperor from Guinalean emigres. His intention was to aid (or incite depending on who is telling the story) rebellion in Guinalea itself although several complications, not the least of which is the Royale Navy, the Regiment has been employed elsewhere from time to time.

In fact they are intended to sevrve in Guinalea in a series of actions intended to show Giggers' early career  in the Dragoons, during the Rebellion of "The Nine That Ate", coming soon to a blog near you.

The Regiment consists of two battalions. 1st/Guinalea consists of 2 Elf Officers and 22 Bog Orc Other Ranks.  The bulk of this battalion is formed by a 20 strong unit of Bog Orc infantry, painted by the talented painters at Alternative Armies. However, and as it turns out, fortunately, there was a mix up in my specification of uniform colour. As a result I painted the coat, collars, turn backs and cuffs meself and in doing so discovered a great deal of fine detail  on these wonderful figures. They have obviously been living the field for sometime as their coats bear multiple tears and patches. Brilliant! I also took the liberty of adding a certain rosiness to noses and cheeks as befits their character.

The uniform is based on that of the Regiment Irlandaise raised by Napoleon in 1803 as a light regiment. 

The Colour Party consists of three Bog Orc Grenadiers and their Elf Officer that I already had albeit in completely different uniform colours. So more quick painting and hey presto!

The flag was fashioned from the Blazon heraldry program and finished with MS Paint.

Which nicely leads us to 2/Guinalea, the Wee Folk.

This battalion numbers one Elf Officer and 24 Wee Folk Other Ranks.  Now in the established fantasy world of Valon, the setting of Flintloque and Slaughterloo, Halflings are said to exist only in Afri. Not content with such limitations I developed the "Pan Wee Folk Theory" which asserts that before the Big Folk races conquered all before them the world was habited only by Halflings and Goblins. To date I have identified two Halfling populations in addition to that of Afri. The Gorgon Halflings, the main source of the Otttermen Empires Mamelukes, and the Wee Folk of Guinalea. More of this endlessly fascinating scientific debate will appear in future posts : ) For now suffice it to say that there are Wee Follk and they have flocked to the Emperor's banner for a crack at hated Albion.

The figures are Alternative Armies' HEVC Halfling troops painted to a colour scheme of  my specification. These chaps came out so very well that I simply painted the very top of their hats a bit brighter to make them "pop" and added the same rosy glow to their noses and cheeks.

The second battalion's colour party consists of three Halflings and their Elf officer. Only the first battalion received an eagle and the second has to make due with home made fanions. 

While first battalion is dressed and equipped the same as any Ferach regiment, the second battalion has been allowed to retain their native costume. Also due to the Wee Folk's inability to tolerate iron, they remain armed with their native silver and gold weaponry. While one might rightly think that such riches would leave them prey to marauding, it is best to remember the Wee Folk's capacity for mayhem is near unlimited. They retain their weapons in the face of marauding simply because they can!

Here are some additional photos of the regiment.

Hope you enjoyed the photos and thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

nGwakia Wells: Deployment

As a follow on  from last post I cobbled together some rules for enemy deployment. As these deployment rules are really  intended for use with HOF Fire Team, they use a grid of nine tiles for determining when and where non player forces appear. As such some rocks have been ever so cleverly placed ( : ) ) to give a sense of the four by six foot table being in fact a grid.

I will be playing this game as Sir Kev of the Chavchesters, and the Isea N Eehigh of Queen Roo Di Shia will be controlled by the game system. A surprisingly lucky roll on the deployment table saw the forces of Albion drawn up while the Isea N Eehigh were still forming.

Fully half of the Queen's forces have yet to come on table.

The Queen is on the table with only her center and left. The right and the reserve have yet to show.

So what next?

The Naal Carabiners scout ahead with half a troop, while the other half remains by as a ready reserve.

Sir Kev takes position near his beloved Chavchesters, two companies strong on the right.

A company of Madness Presidency Goblin Native Infantry, with a Rat officer hold the left flank.

Also on loan from the Madness Presidency, a company Otter Native Infantry are held in reserve. Due to my clumsy placement it seems this company is in disarray. Hopefully the Ogre officer and NCO will get the lads sorted before the ball kicks off.

Meanwhile the Mad Mullah Faqir scans the field while plotting his deviltry. The Faqir has some magic at his command so Sir Kev must be on his Burberry Tartaned toes!

The Mad Mullah Faqir has been both a boon and a curse for Queen Roo Di Shia. He has converted nearly half the tribe to Bilboism with his magic and readings from the LOTR, and his magic has helped the tribe on more than one occasion. Balanced against that there is the animosity between the newly minted Bilboists and the remaining animists. There has been bloodshed between the two factions on more than one occasion. In fact the "rapping" of her daughters came at an opportune moment for the Queen to focus her tribes' aggression on someone other than one another.

As an aside, when I asked Gavin Syme of Alternative Armies for a suggested model to fill the role of spiritual adviser to the Halfling throng, he told me to leave it with him. This fine little fellow arrived in the post converted from AA's Halfling Walking Party with the addition of the finial of an Aegyptian   Halfling standard and a pine apple from, well I really don't know, and painted as you see here. A big thank you to my good friends at Alternative Armies!  

Friday, June 15, 2012

Alone on the Streets a Solo system for Firefight

Over the years I have developed and written a number of solo systems for miniatures war games. I find the exercise quite fascinating really. Trying to create a "robot" opponent who at least appears to  think about its moves rather than simply acting in a random manner is a challenge. Of course it helps that we humans try to deduce patterns in everything. That allows the designer  some leeway as the player fills in the gaps to an extent and somewhat random events take on a life of their own.

For me, the appeal of solo rules is two fold. First and most obviously it allows one to play solo, in one's own time, and at one's convenience. No bad thing in these busy days. The second and perhaps even more delightful possibility is to play the game with your friends all on the same side and allow the solo engine to take care of the opposition.  In this way new comers can be taught the rules without that nagging feeling that rules have been manipulated one way or the other. Better yet in assigning separate commands to each player some friction and fog of war is introduced with no overhead. The old Table Top Games "Pony Wars" was my first exposure to this sort of thing and I have been hooked ever since.

My latest projects in this area are twofold. Both HoF Fire Team and the as yet to be named THW Napoleonic rules need a solo engine. These two games have very different requirements in solo play for the very obvious reason that tactics that served the Duke of Wellington well, will bring certain death to the warriors of the 21st century and beyond.

I've already got a good idea how the THW  solo system will work, but HOF has been a different matter entirely. That game relies on players describing their moves in terms of way points chosen to bring their troops into action at a certain place and time. While this works very well for human vs human play its difficult to see how a robot player would implement such as the human player would know ahead of time any way points the robot has planned. The obvious answer is to allow the robot to forgo way points entirely. Easily said and it could be easily implemented but...and here is the hard to do so while still giving the impression that the robot IS using way points?

I've a few ideas and will  be testing one of them out in the upcoming nGwakia Wells game.

In the mean time I've been reviewing other solo systems I've done in the past and thought I would share this one, written for Firefight 2.0, available from Alternative Armies. This material has previously been published on The Barking Irons blog.

I do hope you enjoy reading them, or at least find some good ideas for your games and as always, thanks for stopping by!

Alone on the Streets a Solo system for Firefight

Basics: This variant of Firefight will allow you to play any scenario solitaire. It is also suitable for play with your friends all playing the same side. This is particularly useful for introducing the game to a new player or just to allow you to explore the world of Firefight in a less competitive vein.
Playing same side or solitaire also allows us to entertain a bit of random mayhem that would be inappropriate for a strict points based competition game. To that end we have introduced the possibility of random events that may affect both sides, although the player side has a slightly greater chance of suffering reverses at the whims of fate.
To play this variant of Firefight 2.0 you will need a deck of fifty two regular playing cards, with the two Jokers left in the deck.
The following conventions apply.

Uses of the cards: Cards are drawn for one of four purposes.
1.       At the start of each turn to see if a random event is triggered.
2.       When a non-player character (NPC) figure is activated.
3.       When a non-player character that is not marked “Turn Done” is attacked.
4.       To randomly select a figure from among those in play.

Set Up: At game start shuffle the deck of cards and stack it on the table in a convenient location.

Random Events (1): In Solo Firefight we add a new phase to the beginning of each turn, the Random Events phase. Draw the top card from the deck and turn it over. If it is an Ace through 10, discard it next to the deck and proceed to the Initiative phase. If it is a Joker, shuffle the deck again and move on to the Initiative phase. If it is a King, Queen, or Jack, a random event will occur. Consult the table of random events at the end of this article to see what happens. After resolving the event, remove the card that caused it from the deck for the remainder of the game. Each event may only occur once per game.
After resolving the event, play proceeds to the Initiative phase.

Initiative Phase: Roll dice as usual to see which side has the option of going first or second. The non-player, or game controlled side (NPC), will always choose to go first if any of its figures has an enemy figure in LOS at turn start. Otherwise the NPC side will choose to act second.

Non-Player Figure Activation (2)
When it is the NPC side’s turn to act a card will be drawn for each figure in turn to see what action 
that figure will take. Start with figures that have LOS to an enemy figure, then move on to figures that do not have an enemy figure in LOS. In each case, figures will act based on how close they are to the enemy. Those closest will act before those further away.
To see what action a figure will take, draw the top card from the deck.
Each card suit is tied to the options available to players of FF 2.0. Generally speaking Spades mean intent to harm the enemy even at risk to self. Hearts mean a more measured approach is in order. Clubs a willingness to wait and see how the turn plays out. Finally diamonds indicate discretion is the order of the moment.

Number Cards: The number on each card gives the distance to an enemy character in LOS that will trigger either an Aimed Fire or Move and Fire option. If there is no suitable enemy figure within that range, the NPC figure will execute the suit’s default action. Here an Ace counts as “adjacent”.

Picture Cards: If drawn as an action card, a picture card indicates the figure will fire at the closest 
enemy in LOS and within weapon range regardless of distance or chance to hit. Suit will indicate the specific action used to make the attack. If no enemy figure is in line of sight, the figure will take the suits’ default action.

Spades (Intent to Harm):
A spade indicates the figure will use an Aimed Fire action if an enemy figure is in LOS within the distance indicated by the card.
If there is an enemy within the distance indicated by the card but not in LOS (such as figures hiding behind terrain) the figure will default to an Assault action.
If there is no enemy figure within the distance indicated by the card the figure will default to a Move action. The figure will move as close to the nearest enemy as it can. The figure will end its move in the best cover it can reach given its objective of closing with the enemy, this means it can end up in the open if no cover is available.

Hearts (Measured Approach):
A figure drawing hearts will use a Move and Fire action if an enemy figure is in LOS within the distance indicated by the card. Any movement from this action will only be used if the figure can end its move in soft or better cover.
If there is no enemy figure in LOS within the distance indicated by the card the figure will default to a Move action. The figure will move as close to the nearest enemy as it can but only if it can end its move in soft or better cover.
Failing that, if the figure cannot move into soft or better cover, it will stay where it is with a Stay Frosty action, firing on the first enemy to spend a General dice within LOS and weapon range.

Clubs (Willingness to Wait):
A figure drawing clubs will use a Move and Fire action if an enemy figure is in LOS within the distance indicated by the card. Any movement from this action will only be used if the figure can end its move in hard or better cover.
If there is no enemy figure in LOS within the distance indicated by the card the figure will default to a Stay Frosty action, firing on the first enemy to spend a General dice within LOS and weapon range.

Diamonds (Discretion):
A figure drawing diamonds will use a Move and Fire action if an enemy figure is in LOS within the distance indicated by the card. Any movement will be used to move away from any enemy figures only if the figure can end its move in hard or better cover.
If there is no enemy figure in LOS within the distance indicated by the card the figure will default to a Move action and move as far away from the enemy as possible and end in the best cover state available (this may be open). A figure that is already behind the furthest available cover on the battleground will Stay Frosty instead of Moving, firing on the first enemy to spend a General dice within LOS and weapon range.

Joker: If a Joker is drawn, immediately reshuffle the deck and then draw the new top card to see what action to take.

Non Player Character Defensive Options (3)
When an NPC figure that has yet to act this turn is attacked, draw the top card of the deck to see what Defensive Option the figure chooses.

Spades: The figure will Return Fire.

Hearts: The figure will Return Fire.

Clubs: The figure will rely on its Armour for protection.

Diamonds: The figure will Run for Cover.

Joker: If a Joker is drawn, immediately reshuffle the deck and then draw the new top card to see what action to take.

Random Selection (4):
When the rules call for you to make a random selection deal out one card to each eligible figure. Usually this will be to determine which figures experiences a random event. The figure with the highest value card is selected.
Card are ordered from high (Ace of Spades) to low (2 of diamonds) in this order by value: A, K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4 ,3 ,2 and suite; Spades, Hearts, Clubs, Diamonds. Thus the Six of Hearts is considered a higher card than the Six of Clubs.
Should a Joker be drawn for random selection, discard it and draw another card. Be sure to reshuffle the deck after the random selection has been completed.

Well that’s it really. The rest of the game proceeds according to the Firefight rule book and whichever scenario you have decided to play. Play proceeds from turn to turn until your objective is achieved or you feel victory is out of your reach. Then set up another scenario and once more into the breach!
Feel free to modify these rules to better suit your style of play or simply just to see what will happen. For example you could omit the Random Events phase if that’s not the sort of thing you like in your games. In the same vein you could expand on the random events listed to better suit the models in your collection.
The only hard and fast rule is to have fun… and be creative. Wait that’s two rules… Break Transmission.

Random Event Descriptions:

King of Spades: Sniper attack!
An enemy sniper team has gotten a shot! Roll 1d6 per PC side figure currently in play. If any 6’s are rolled, one PC side figure determined at random has suffered one hit by a Valerin 9Kw Laser Rifle. The targeted figure may use any of the defensive options other than Return Fire.

Queen of Spades: Artillery Barrage!
There is no such thing as “friendly fire”. One side or the other has mistakenly landed a barrage in your battle ground. Roll 1d6 for each figure in play, friend and enemy both. Any figures rolling a 6 are killed and removed from play. Roll 1d6 for each terrain item in play. Any terrain item rolling a 6 is destroyed just as if it had failed to dodge a hit from a heavy weapon. All figures are now marked “Turn Done” and play proceeds to the following turn’s Random Event phase.

Jack of Spades: Booby Trap!
One of your lads triggers an enemy device. Select one of your figures at random and roll two dice. Any 6’s are strength 1 hits. Any defensive option other than Return Fire may be selected.

King of Hearts: Religious Procession
Even in these dark times, or perhaps “especially” in these dark times, those with the Calling embark on The Pilgrimage. All factions know better than to interfere with the Pilgrims. Life on New Bosworth is hard enough without having angered the Almighty.  1d6 Monks enter play from a randomly determined battle ground edge. They will move in single file, three General Dice per turn on course for the opposite board edge. The Monks will move after the Initiative Phase but before any other figures take their turn. If the Monks encounter an obstacle roll 1d6. On 1-3 they will move around it to their right, or on 4-6 they will move around it to their left. On reaching the opposite side of the board the Monks will exit, each monk spending one General Dice to do so. No figure of any faction may attack a target that could count a Monk as cover, nor may the Monks themselves be targeted. If there is any possibility that a scattering weapon could attack the Monks, that weapon may not be used this turn. Monks may still be subject to an Artillery Barrage should one occur while they are on the table.

Queen of Hearts: Addled Citizen
It is well known that the Barons mean no harm to the average citizen, even while their Retinues battle in the streets of Bosworth. However for some the sounds of combat  are just too much, causing the citizen to “snap”. In some cases the “snap” happened before battle was joined.
An addled citizen stumbles out onto the street searching for a lost loved one, lost pet, or perhaps just their lost sanity. The citizen appears on a random board edge and will move 3 General Dice straight out across the board on its first move. On subsequent moves roll 1 dice before moving the citizen and check the result below:
1: Same as last turn
2: Right from last turn
3: Left from last turn
4: Opposite of last turn
5: Diagonally towards nearest board edge.
6: Straight towards nearest board edge.
The citizen moves after the Initiative phase but before any combatant figures take their turn. Each turn the citizen may spend up to 3 General Dice on movement. If the citizen’s move takes it into contact with an obstacle or figure, the citizen will immediately stop moving that turn and ask the obstacle or figure if it “has seen which way Princess Tinkle has gone?”, “would you like a cuppa?”, or enquires “so how is your Aunt Margaret?” or some similar such request or platitude.
If fired on and hit the citizen has no save options. In melee the citizen may use its 3 General dice as a melee score of 3. There is no restriction other than your conscience on attacking an addled citizen or using one for cover. In fact a figure adjacent to the citizen may declare that it is moving with the citizen. Move the citizen as normal and allow any figure’s moving with the citizen to position themselves adjacent to the citizen in any square the moving figure would have been able to enter. Mark any figure that moved with the citizen “Turn Done” and return to the regular sequence of play.

Jack of Hearts: Rogue Dispenser Bot
In times of peace, Dispenser Bots are a common sight on the streets of Bosworth, peddling anything from synth-meat pies to ice cold Irn-Bru. The Bots’ noise, vibration and proximity sensors are enough to keep them off the streets in time of upheaval. Yet as with all machinery malfunctions do occur.
A rogue Dispencer Bot ambles onto the field of play offering to supply tasty snacks to one and all! The Bot will enter from a random battle ground edge. With a move score of 4, the Bot will move towards the nearest living figure of either side, stopping when it is adjacent. If it is adjacent to a figure at the start of its turn it will simply offer a syth-meat pie, cold drink, or Moon Pie to the soldier. Having done, so it will move off towards the next nearest living figure on the following turn and so on. The Bot will not stop at a figure it has already offered refreshments too unless it has already visited all living figures on the board at which time its program will reset itself and it will begin the process of visiting and offering all over again.
For combat purposes the Dispenser Bot has a Dodge score of 3 and may only be damaged by following the procedures outlined under the “Destroying Property” section of the Firefight rule book. There is no restriction on attacking a rogue Bot or using one for cover. In fact a figure adjacent to the Bot may declare that it is moving with the Bot. Move the Bot as normal and allow any figure’s moving with the Bot to position themselves adjacent to the Bot in any square the moving figure would have been able to enter using a Move option. Mark any figure that moved with the Bot “Turn Done” and return to the regular sequence of play.

King of Clubs: Citizen Frenzy
Not all residents of Bosworth are content to have their neighborhoods ravaged while retinues battle it out on the streets. Some “Citizen’s Militia” organizations strike back at all comers within their grasp. Granted their “strike” is usually quite feeble and doomed to failure but as the saying goes, “a citizen has to do what a citizen has to do”.
A mob of 1d6 citizens appear on a random battle ground edge. Citizens are Move 4, Ranged 0, Melee 2, Armour 0, have no skills and are armed with bits of furniture/crow bars, plumbing, etc.
Citizen’s take their move after the Initiative phase but before any other model moves. Each citizen will move towards the nearest living figure of either side and attempt to engage in melee, effectively becoming a third side in the battle. Each citizen will fight until incapacitated.

Queen of Clubs: Homemade Fire Bomb
Not fancying their chances in open combat with Barons’ Men, some disgruntled citizens are content to throw the odd synth-spirit bomb from on high at the soldiers desperately fighting in their neighborhood.
Randomly select one combatant figure to be the target of the attack. This may be a figure from either the player or NPC side. Treat the fire bomb as a heavy weapon attack originating from the nearest pavement edge of the play area launched by a figure with Ranged 2, targeting the unfortunate figure’s square. The usual rules for targeting and scatter apply and the impacted square is treated as if an AOE 1, STR 2, weapon detonated there.

 Jack of Clubs: Dead Fall
The problem with synth-spirit bombs is that they can go badly wrong, setting both citizen and his hab alight. For the discerning disgruntled citizen, the age old Dead Fall is the weapon of choice. One of the  buildings on this block has been rigged with a pile of debris ready to rain down on the unsuspecting.
Randomly select one figure from among the living combatants. The lucky winner is subject to attack by dead fall.  The figure must Run for Cover, looking for a Dodge. If no Dodge is forthcoming the figure is buried under a pile of rubble. On a successful Dodge, move the figure in accordance with the Run For Cover option and mark it “Turn Done”. In either event place a Dodge Score 3 rubble pile in the square in which the figure started its turn.

King of Diamonds: Enemy Reinforcement
Another enemy soldier joins the battle. The new arrival will appear in a square randomly selected from amongst those used for the enemy’s initial deployment. The new arrival will be either a Muster Infantry Private or Retained Household Varlet depending on which troop type made up the majority of the enemy’s initial force.

Queen of Diamonds: Rogue Air Mine
An active air mine enters the battlefield from parts unknown. The mine will appear on a randomly selected road edge. Each turn the mine will follow the procedure for Air Mines in the Firefight rule book.

Jack of Diamonds: Road Rupture
Quite naturally the cities of New Bosworth are served by a network of sewers channeling the effluvia of millions to the recycle posts for treatment. Also quite naturally the road surfaces are thinnest above these vast channels of filth. Unnaturally the road surfaces have been stressed by the combats raging throughout the cities.
A combatant chosen at random is standing on a weak spot as it gives way. The weak spot rolls one dice looking for a hit. If it succeeds and the target figure is unable to counter with a Dodge, the unfortunate figure falls and is swept away by the undercurrent of effluvia never to be seen again.  If the figure successfully Dodges, it may carry on with its Run for Cover action after which it is marked “Turn Done”.
In either event the weak spot square is now a gaping hole, impassible for the remainder of the game.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Dawn at nGwakia Wells

Following news of the  events at Two Gala River, Sir Kev has gathered a scratch force of depot troops and marched towards the river. The core of this force consists of two line companies of his beloved Chavchesters.

The 115th had been assigned to garrison the port of Sookin, debarkation point of General McBaird's expedition sent from Inji to attack the Elven garrison of Aegypt from the south. As a result the forces at Sir Kev's disposal include company troops from the Madness Presidency. One company of Otter, and one of Goblin, Native Foot round out the infantry component of the column.

A single troop of the Naal Carabiners are providing invaluable service, scouting the route ahead and screening the column's movements.

Sir Kev's plan is to set up a forward base at nGwakia Wells, the nearest settlement on the Albion side of the river.

Last night the scouts reported a glow in the sky in the direction of the Wells.

This morning the scouts reported finding the settlement burned out. Neither orc nor halfling dwellings were spared.

Now, as the column finally nears the wells, the companies are on high alert...

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

New Single from Professor Elemental!

Have a listen to the latest from Gentleman Rhymer extraordinaire Professor Elemental! The good Professor has also produced a comic book of his adventures. From the newsletter: "PROFESSOR ELEMENTAL: THE COMIC I am overwhelmingly chuffed to announce the launch of the new Professor Elemental comic. Issue One goes one sale exclusively from today! Featuring four splendid stories by some of the best independent artists on the scene and a spot of new written material by me, it’s a finely crafted read for all ages. Masterminded, edited and written by the incredible Chris Mole, we are very proud of issue one and hope you enjoy it. And you should see what Chris has in store for the Professor in issue two…" Here's a toast of Pimms to that fine gentleman, the Professor and his stalwart apeic butler Geoffrey!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Well, Maybe Just Old...

This is a WIP report on the Microbele tribe of Afri.

As mentioned last time I had planned to paint 12 warriors a day over four days, and it was all too much. As it happens though, I really did paint 12 the first day and then largely due to our lovely weather* and its deleterious effect on my health, the figures sat dormant for weeks.


Until yesterday when I painted 36 (!) of the little blighters, all this between bouts of wrestling with lawn equipment, power washes and helping my boy with some computer issues.

Dipped all 48 today, and then worked on the two Indunas.

These chaps were done the old fashioned way. None of that dipping the kids are wild about these days...

The figures are from Old Glory's Dwarf Britannia range but with some rather clever painting of fur on their feet they will take their place in the ranks of my Halfling forces for Darkest Afri games.

The Microbele are a pastoral folk living south of the Suddan and fight against/ally with the Ottermans, Bilboists, Ferach Elves, and forces of Albion as required.

Currently they are required to serve as allies to the Isea N Eehigh as Queen Roo Di Shia seeks vengeance against the orcs.

Next steps of course are applying dull coat to remove the gloss and basing although not necessarily in that order

Hope you enjoy the photos and thanks for dropping by!

* The weather actually has been lovely spring weather. Brezzy, not too hot mostly, and occasional thunderstorms.  Sadly my dang lungs can't handle it any more.