Monday, 8 August 2016

BOYL 2016 - The Storming of Perlsea Fort (A Warbands Game).

An excellent weekend unfolded at the annual BOYLfest, where a ton of lead was carried to the excellent hosts that are the Foundry and dozens of fantastic games were played amongst awesome scenery, with some stunning miniatures and of course with some great people. I tried to live up to these high standards by running my own Realm of Chaos warbands game using my own scenery and with a narrative scenario for the three gamers who joined in, Greg, Ian and Steve. They all came with great looking warbands and embraced the idea behind the game (even though it took much longer than I expected, no-one seemed to mind!)

So each of the players were given an opposing objective which was based around the Necromancer named Roudan the Hollow:

Objective 1:
The Necromancer, Roudan The Hollow, has taken up residence in the ruins of Perlsea Fort, where his dark incantations have not gone unnoticed. His power and influence in the area is growing and I believe he has hired some mercenary orcs to assist him. Proceed with both caution and haste as I would like to see whether we can procure his services for our own ends.

Objective 2 was the same, but with the need to assassinate the Necromancer

And Objective 3 was to try and discover the ancient relic which was giving the Necromancer all of his powers..

The players turns were randomised so as to keep them on their toes and in a few rounds it became very important as to who went before someone else... Next time I'll develop this so that it's not random, but perhaps based upon initiative or something.

Here you can see the set up of the game. Roudan the Hollow ensconced inside his castle with some of his undead experiments wandering around. His Orc mercenaries, Rogboth's Boyz, are based around their lookout tower
The player's warbands entered from the corners of the table.
Here are Ian's beautiful Khorne warband, with a unit of thugs led by a Chaos Warrior, a couple of Beastmen, an Ogre and three Chaos Dwarfs. It was funny to see that the model Ian had used for his champion was exactly the same one I had used for the Necromancer! So another layer of sibling rivalrly was added to the narrative. Ian's objective was to destroy the Necromancer in typical Khornate style.
Steve's wonderful Chaos Cultist warband, with two mages, familiars, Chaos Goblins and a unit of Human Chaos Cultists. Steve had to try and recover the powerful relic which was purported to be kept in a sarcophagus.
And Greg's amazing warband, which was made up entirely of pre-slotta models. He had a level 10 Chaos Hero, 3 lizardmen, 6 Half-Orcs (just poking around the wall) and a unit of Beastmen.
Before the game started I suggested to the players that there should be an rpg element to the game, in that the scenery and npc's should be interacted with. Ian's beastmen decided to look inside the cottage, only to discover a sleeping and aged barbarian. A guttural conversation ensued before any axes were swung, and the beastmen convinced the barbarian to join them with the promise of ladies and gold. He was a level 5 hero frenzied hero who actually went on to do a lot of damage.

As Ian and Greg's warbands approached the burnt out church, the noise made by the braying beastmen and the hissing lizardmen, caused a load of ghouls who had been feasting on remnants of bodies, to run out and investigate who the interlopers were.

Meanwhile Steve's approaching Cultists were engaged by the mercenary orcs as one of their kind was sent back to the castle to inform their paymaster. Potshots from the chaos goblins (including one who had a bolter) all missed their mark. One of the mages cast Undead Hero and Raise Skeletons who were charged by the remaining Orcs.

Sid the aged barbarian was making short work of the ghouls, who even with T5 and poisoned attacks could not harm him or the tough beastmen. The lizardmen joined in the spree too.

During the battle I noticed a spiderweb that had been spun whilst the church had been stored in my garage. Definitely beyond my sculpting skills, but quite apt for the haunted ambience of the scenario! You can also see how beautifully painted the lizardmen are. Btw, they're tiny sculpts!

The Mercenary Orcs killed off the skeletons but ran away from the fearsome Ogre. The orc runner managed to alert the Necromancer who began raising some extra defenders as the warbands approached his castle. The ghouls were all quickly dispatched. Not one of the players warbands had even suffered a wound at this point and all the GM's toys had been quite easily defeated.

From inside the castle you can see the undead minions leaving to engage the approaching warbands. Just look at his supply of bones, swept into neat piles by his minions.

And look there's even sarcophagi.

As expected there was a mass combat outside the castle gates, here between some skeletons and the chaos thugs. The half-orcs kept failing their fear tests to charge anyone and in the end decided to use a ladder to climb the walls. Who would leave a ladder there? The necromancer was way too busy with his spells to even consider practicalities such as this. or maybe he was way too confident in his abilities...?
In the background you can see Greg's lizardmen had charged Ian's warband, they failed an intelligence test and decided that was a better option than following their leader and his primary objective. You can also see that Greg's hero has been wounded by a goblin short bow. Ouch.

The ogre was incredibly tough and rightly feared by all. Here is approaching the fighting.

More undead were raised by the necromancer to swell the dwindling numbers (so many instability rolls were made by me) and the Cultists re-cast the Undead Hero spell to add some beef to their attacks.

Just a close up of some wonderful looking models together.

A pool of water reflecting the summer's day...

Right back to the game... Greg's beastmen fled from the fearsome ogre (he really needed to have his turn first), however his hero stayed around to fight (briefly). Ian's Beastmen and Dwarves were in awe of Sid's slaying abilities as his frenzied nature (you can see it in his pose) cut down the lizardmen

Up until now the Half-Orcs had been incredibly ineffective. But they managed to climb the ladder and breach the ramparts. In the background, the Ogre kills Greg's hero, however the Necormancer, scared of the Ogre, casts a reanimate spell to bring back the Hero as an Undead champion. Unfortunately at the cost of 2 toughness...

However he manages to wound the ogre and saves his remaining wound on a roll of a 6 on his chaos armour.. The goblin's shortbows also cause a wound on the ogre!

Having disposed of some annoying rats, Steve's cultist mage climbs the east side of the castle ramparts in a race with the Half_Orcs. The necromancer, has risen an undead wolf and did not spot the intruders. In the background the thugs charge the annoying Goblins.

A spooky glowing from the walls of the castle, it must be the eye of the gods.... With Greg's undead warband leader finally killed by the ogre, the half-orc champion becomes the warbands leader. He automatically receives Khorne's gift (plus an extra attack and pip of leadership) as well as an attribute - silly walk! This all happened as the Half-Orcs were descending the ladder. They charge the remaining zombies as the Necromancer desperately takes control of the Undead Hero to protect him.

Steve's other mage is killed by the undead wolf, the thugs kill off the goblins and Ian's hero makes a last ditch move to kill the necromancer before the other's can complete their missions. In the background Beastmen confront each other in a stalemate battle where there is lots of pushing back from side to side.

It all kicks off in the final turn. Greg's half-orcs kill the zombies and want to begin talking to the necromancer, however Steve's mage (just out of shot) cast's Assault of Stone to try and kill the necromancer (his objective is to get the hidden relic). The necromancer stays alive by passing his chaos armour save and Ian is just about to line up a charge to kill the necromancer, one turn too late. Amongst al this the Half-Orcs manage to eloquently convince the Necromancer, with impending doom surrounding him, to join forces with the warband and in a bid to save himself, he agrees! Greg was the winner!

Here's you can see all the participants leaders and how close they each were to completing their objectives, only for Greg to pip them to it. We didn't discuss how the Necromancer and the half orcs escaped as we were all keen to have a break and see the other great events going on at the Foundry.

And how the final battlefield looked.

It was a very fun game to GM, with three guys who got really immersed in the game and played in a wonderful spirit. It took about 3 hours, but was well worth it, before we moved onto other events at BOYL.

This included a wonderful game of Advanced Heroquest (sorry I didn't take any photos) but it was wonderfully GM'd by Mike who had a great set of miniatures and some brilliant scratchbuilt scenery.

I also made some purchases - these for my forthcoming baggage train:

And these two unreleased Citadel wizards which had been cast up specifically for the event. I'll use these as npc's for future games.
I also spent some time with Kev Adams and a couple of pints as he sculpted my head onto the Morcar miniature which was especially commissioned by Fimm for the event. It was great to see Kev at work for the 30minutes it took him, even on a wobbly table, in a hot marquee (that affected the maleability of the greenstuff) and lots of interruptions, his sculpting skills were a marvel to behold and a real treat for me to witness over the weekend. He raised a lot of money for cancer research and it was great to hear his opinion on subjects such as hedgehogs, acl injuries, poor eating manners, his family and how some of the people he does commissions for are can be bloody selfish...:

Curtis, as always is a great bloke and gave every attendee an Oldhammer miniature:
And a box of his miscasts for free, which I rummaged around in to find some parts for a forthcoming scratchbuilt spacecraft:

I was also lucky enough to win runner up in the painting competition for my unit of ogres:

And had a good chat with Harry about a Fighting Fantasy/Dungeon Crawl/Roc Warbands mash up for next year - imagine Deathtrap Dungeon and Trial of Champions based scenarios, with a band of heroes fighting each other, recogniseable foes in a dungeon setting using our tiles and Fighting Fantasy stats? Well that's what we're aiming for...

Finally a huge thanks to all at the Foundry who make us feel incredibly welcome every year and go beyond what you would expect from a host, Gaj for doing so much of the organising and the go-to man for the event and all the other people there that share my passion and enjoyment of gaming with thoughtfully collected and skilfully painted miniatures and who always consider that the opponent should be having more fun than yourself in any given environment.

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