Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Empire of the Dead - new minis

Some new miniatures for Empire of the Dead arrive at the weekend. These were bought from my blogging friend Simon (Brummie Thug - http://brummieswargamingblog.blogspot.dk/) who has been selling off his Empire of the Dead collection.

He gave me a good offer on the Vampire Slayers faction, the Nemesis Criminals faction and a few single characters (Gentlemen with Gatling Guns and The Inscrutable Tong). As a nice surprise Simon had included two other Empire of the Dead minis - Professor Cavor and The Specimen - a very nice gesture indeed.

Yesterday I cleaned up the minimal flash that the minis had and glued the arms of the Gentlemen and The Specimen. Work is extremely hectic at the moment so it might be a few weeks before I get around to actually painting them.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Broken Legions: Chance Encounter

My friend Michael visited yesterday for the first time in a couple of months and I was eager to introduce him to Broken Legions - the upcoming Osprey title by Mark Latham.

When introduced to the three warband options that I currently have; Romans, Germanic Tribes and Dacians, he opted for the Dacians - their option of having a Strigoi (vampire) swayed him. This meant that I had the chance to play the Romans for the first time.

It being a long time since I played last and Michael a complete novice we choose to play the Chance Encounter scenario - each warband starts in a corner and will then try to slaughter each other.

These are the warbands we chose the following for 200 points:

Romans - Soldiers of the Eagle

Primus Pilum
Praetorians x 2
Legionary x 4
Numeri scouts x 3
Balearic slingers x 3


Nobles x 3
Falxmen x 4
Warriors x 2
Standard Bearer
Warhounds x 2

The first couple of rounds were spend moving up the board - the fighting style of the Romans with the option of going into a Shieldwall lends itself to a cautious approach, while the Dacians look like they would be better served by being aggressive.

By the beginning of round three both warbands were beginning to get into melee and being Locked in Combat. Pick of the bunch was the Primus Pilum who charged the Strigoi. Melee in Broken Legions between Heroes is not something that is over in a few rounds, while it is a bit faster when the Henchmen are fighting.

My Numeri scouts managed to kill a Warrior, and take a wound of a Noble. The Balearic slingers shot a Falxman. I made the mistake of breaking my shieldwall and instead charging the Dacians, thus losing an advantage.

The rest of the game were spent more or less in melee with many close fights and the upper hand switching between the two warbands constantly. In the end the deciding factor was the Strigoi who's vampiric abilities made him difficult to take down.

The game lasted for 3 hours, a bit long, but I forgot about several rules along the way could perhaps have sped up the game. I know that the author Mark Latham speculated about reducing the amount of point with which to buy your warband and it might a good move.

Michael quite liked the premise of the game and the game itself. It has an enormous potential with the addition of Auxilary (mercenaries)  - everything from Cyclops, Sicari assassins and Necromancers.

Next up for my Broken Legions gaming is trying to convince my friend Chris that he should try it.

Here are some pictures from our game,

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Colonials: Guides

Here are the pictures of the last colonials that I currently have - which will hopefully change soon.

These are the Guides from Artizan Designs - again lovely minis and very easy to paint up. The minis themselves are a mix of sikhs and punjabs and unlike the other two units that I have these are not in boots but native style shoes, which makes them easy to identify for non-colonial history buffs like me. The officer is, like the other units, from the officers pack that I got - and is among the coolest looking minis in the Artizan range.

Hope you enjoy them, as I am very satisfied with the final look of the unit.

Friday, February 12, 2016

EotD: Horrific Crime and Infernium Intervention

Yesterday evening saw Chris and I continue our Empire of the Dead campaign; Lycaons vs. 221B Alliance. Once again we were using our house rules which again worked really well. We managed to get two games in both of which were homebrewed scenarios that I had cooked up. Both scenarios need some tweaking but the basic premise is there. Here is a brief description of them.

Horrific Crime
"Reports have come in that some sort of massacre has taken place in a neighbourhood/village. The factions have decided to find out what has happened, looking for survivors to rescue/capture or loot."
Basically 10 corpse markers are placed around the board. Once a character moves into contact with the marker then can spend their action to search the body. At this point the player roll a die to see what he has found; survivor, dead body (with loot) or a zombie. 
Each faction gains shillings by rescuing survivor, defeating zombies or the loot. The usual shillings for men left standing and kills still apply, but there is no actual winner/loser in the scenario. The scenario is limited to 8 turns.
This scenario is based of a Frostgrave scenario that I saw in some PDF supplement. 

Infernium Intervention
"The factions learn that a criminal gang is holding a large quantity of Infernium in a carriage/coach ready to be smuggled to another location. The factions will need to move fast if they are to stop the gang and take the Infernium for themselves."
In the center of the board are placed a coach/carriage, 5 thugs and a guv'nor. If any of them are attacked or shot at the guv'nor will order the coach/carriage to move out. The factions will then have to get to the coach/carriage before it leaves the nearest board edge. If a faction member gets into base contact with the coach/carriage and there are no members of the criminal gang in base contact with it, they take control of the coach/carriage. They now have to get the coach/carriage back to their own deployment zone, to win the game.

The games
Horrific Crime
We played the Horrific Crime scenario first and once again the swiftness of Lycaons was a great advantage and he slowness of Watson and Mycroft a major hindrance. Chris once again fielded Red among his Lycaons and her Move 7 is devastating. 

The corpse markers proved to be great objectives as we were both focused on getting to them rather than combating each other. As we both moved into the center of the board conflict was inevitable - Red and the Beastlord once again proved too tough in combat for my peelers and all three ended up being removed from table. In the end the slow Watson was chasing the fast Beastlord, but unsurprisingly was unable to catch him. 

The shooting of Sir Henry Baskerville and Holmes' combat abilities removed Chris' two Wolfkins. Since Chris had one Wolfkins sitting the game over due to injury this meant that a Bravado check was required, and her the Beastlord failed his check, so Red was the only Lycaon member left standing. 

In the end we got to all corpse markers but not once did a zombie appear and most of the time it was just a dead body with a few shillings to loot. 

After this game we both agreed that the possibility of a zombie appearing should be better as it no doubt would have changed the game. Both of us ended with 19 shillings for our factions.

Infernium Intervention
This was the scenario that felt would need the most playtesting, which proved correct. However it ended up being a very enjoyable game. Our deployment zones were large corners and the Lycaons started on a pier. Knowing that I would be a lot slower than my opponent I opted to take a shot at a thug when the opportunity first came about. That way the guv'nor would order the coach to move out. Holmes and Watson would combat the criminals while the rest of my faction would try to intervene the coach. 

The first part of the plan worked, but the swift Beastlord boarded the coach and the Lycaons controlled it. Two peelers got into good positions to take shots at the coach, but only one managed to do damage to it. Holmes went into combat with the thugs while Watson and the guv'nor were taking shots at each other. The Wolfkins moved in cover along the piers, trying to get into positions where they could protect the route of the coach. In the following round Chris won the initiative and promptly increased the speed of the coach and decided to take the "Run him down" action trying to run down two of my peelers and Mycroft. Mycroft and one of the peelers managed to dodge the onrushing coach, but the second peeler was run down and removed from play. The peeler who dodged then took a shot at the coach and it another fabrication wound. Sir Henry Baskerville then shot with his hunting rifle but again no damage was done. Chris' Wolfkins had now taken up positions and one of them shot my peeler with a crossbow and he was removed from play.

Meanwhile Holmes was fighting the thugs, but could not make any of them suffer. Watson and the guv'nor shot at each other, but neither could do damage. This scene continued for several rounds.

My planned intervention of the coach was running on it's last leg. My last peeler had gotten closer to the coach, but Red then charged him. Mycroft was then shot by a crossbow and removed from play. Being unhinged I rolled to see how he reacted and rolled a 1 meaning he panicked and was removed from play. Knowing that my last chance would be to inflict the last fabrication wound to the coach, I decided to let Sir Henry take a shot, knowing that Red would charge him. But Sir Henry missed and my last chance was gone. Red then charged and in the following combat had no problem removing Sir Henry from play. Holmes actually managed to remove two thugs from play, but Watson was still unable to kill the guv'nor.

With the game more or less over we decided to call it a day. It was a fun scenario to play, but I need to work more on what the thugs/guv'nor will do and why as we generally just agreed on their actions.