Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Frostgrave 2: Enter the Wizard

Taking a mini break from my Kingdom and Empire project to look more at Frostgrave.

One of the things I like about the game is that I can easily put together the figures I need from my existing collection of D&D minis.

My first warband is made up entirely from D&D pre paints; the random selection minis that Wizards of the Coast used to sell.

I haven't thought of names yet, and as I have yet to play I don't know if this is a sensible selection for a warband, only time will tell.

The minis will do 'as is', but I will probably touch up the paintwork (the thug in the middle of the front rank has already been repainted and based), which could be distinctly dodgy at times.  I would also like to include some sort of emblem,or at least a unifying spot colour, to tie them in as a group.
the items at the front are the six treasure tokens that came with the backer's version of the game, they should be easy to paint.

Friday, 24 July 2015

Bones Warning

Just a reminder to anyone out there who might be tempted, less than 48 hours left of the Reaper Bones 3 Kickstarter

This is shaping up nicely, with lots of useful stuff for roleplaying.  I'm not sure if they will reach the five headed dragon (Tianot), but I hope the gribbly worm thing is unlocked at $2m.

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Kickstarter Mythos Madness

Just a quick mention of the various Mythos inspired stretch goals in the Reaper Bones 3 Kickstarter

One stretch goal is Shub-Niggurath, and another is a new expansion pack themed around the Mythos.

My Cthulhu Mythos love hasn't had much mention here yet, but I will be very excited by all these minis.

The only problem is I want them now.   (Well that and finding someone who wants to buy one of my kidneys).

Friday, 17 July 2015


I mentioned this game a while back, well it has just arrived.  By pre-ordering I got lots of free goodies; a couple of armoured figures and several treasure tokens as well as the book, a box of the plastic Frostgrave soldiers and a wizard and apprentice.

I have only skimmed through the book for now, but it seems a simple enough system.  The aim of the game is to take your wizard and apprentice, accompanied by various soldiers and hirelings, into the recently thawed city of Frostgrave.  There you search for treasures to increase the level (power) of your wizard, and fight off other wizards trying to do the same.  

There are some nice touches, such as the apprentice wizard advancing as the main wizard does.  
The plastic soldiers are great, lots of weapon variants and equipment.  I am a bit puzzled by some of the extras as I haven't yet found how they work in game.  But they are lovely to have, and I can see them being used a lot in D&D.

Over the next few weeks I will be putting together a Frostgrave band, probably initially for D&D prepainted minis, just so I can have a game.  Expect progress reports on here in and among my other projects.

Frostgrave is available from North Star

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Ramblings about Kings of War

Just got back from a day of battles against my good friend 'Merlin'.  It's quite a drive, so its something we only do two or three times a year.

Today we tried a Kings of War battle using the new 2nd edition rules.  I used my 1000 points of Kingdoms of Men (of course), and Merlin used 1000 points of his Kingdoms of Men, using historical Normans (with a wizard).

Let battle commence!

The 'Norman' battle line (with a unit of knights behind the wood)

The 'Empire' battle line (with a unit of pistoliers at the far end).

We both had a great time.  There were some new bits to the rules and the troops that surprised us, but nothing major.  The aim of the battle was to get 100 points more of troops in the opponents half of the battlefield.  I managed about 80 points, resulting in a hard fought draw.  A couple of important turning points were when my wavered knights threw off the effect thanks to the new Headstrong ability and were able to crush the enemy knights, and at the end of turn 6 when I had no troops in the other half, only a lucky seventh turn allowed me to prevent defeat.  
And of course, the pistoliers, being the newly painted unit, were first to be removed.

We also played a game of Warband, a newish game designed for 10mm fantasy.  I dug out an old ratman army that I once painted for Warhammer (back in the day when I could paint things that small), rebased them, and fought against Merlin's Dragon Men.

The game focuses on the command aspects of a battle, with activation rolls being required for moving, and command points from the general being used to increase the chance of success in all aspects of the game.  It reminded me of Hordes of the Things (or DBA), but with better fantasy detail.  Or perhaps a bit like Warmaster?

If this sounds like your sort of thing the rules are available form Pendraken, and I believe a PDF is available on Wargames Vault.

Whilst I decided the game was not for me, it was still a very enjoyable experience.  I'm sure that familiarity would help, but I don't think I will find any opponents down here, so, sadly, I will concentrate my efforts into other games.  

The 10mm armies did look good though, especially Merlin's Dragon Men

I mentioned earlier that I don't intend to get into long arguments about Age of Sigmar, but if you are interested in the main similarities and differences between Kings of War and Warhammer, check out Puggimer's blog 'Until Somebody looses an Eye' below.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Kingdom and Empire part 2

The Wizard and the mounted scouts are done (bar any varnish/anti shine I decide to use).

The wizard got a new staff head from the Empire cannon sprue (I think it was part of the metal work holding the barrel in place).  The figure itself is quite an old one, and the horse is from Battle Masters, an old G.W. MB Games boardgame.  I am particularly pleased with the way the sword blade came out, I was aiming for a blade of obsidian with veins of heat running through.  As the figure was originally one of the Bright Wizards (who specialise in fire magic) this seemed appropriate.  The sword blade seemed too thick for a normal metal blade so I feel this explains it a bit.

The Pistolliers are the old two part metal ones, the leader being a mixture of different parts (including the horse, one of the first G.W. plastic horses).

I am happy with the paint jobs.  In the end they were all pretty much done from scratch, but they were the least painted of the figures I had sorted out for my Kingdoms of Men.  The rest can take to the field for now, though I will do some touching up at some point.

Friday, 10 July 2015

Kingdom and Empire

I have mentioned some time ago that I have plenty of GW's Empire figures and that I intended one day to sort them out into a Kingdoms of Men army for Kings of War.  Well to paraphrase Aragorn, "today is that day".

The reason I have switched armies is Age of Sigmar.  A great deal has been said about this, I don't want to get into an argument over it, suffice to say, it's not for me, and I suspect quite a lot of WFB players are now looking at their armies and thinking 'what shall I do with these?'

I stopped playing Warhammer Fantasy several years ago and switched to Kings of War.  I think it gives me a quicker, more enjoyable game that feels like tactics are rewarded rather than who has the newest monster.  My Kingdom and Empire project is designed to show WFB players with existing collections that KoW very easily works with other figures, and building an army is pretty straight forward.

When KoW came out the humans list was designed to cover many different manufacturers ranges, and you could easily pick out the troop types to represent Empire (and Bretonnia for that matter).  I understand that Mantic are bringing out a book of army lists that cover other fantasy races such as lizardmen, and that the 'Empire of Rhodia' is an Empire analogue, complete with halflings!  However, I am sticking to KoM for this as it covers more of my existing figures.

I finally found my carry case of Empire, lost deep in the 'Loft of Shame'.  First shock; despite foam packing there was quite a bit of damage.  Second shock; did I really used to paint like that?
Anyway, I soon sorted out a regiment of cavalry and two of infantry, with a troop to accompany each regiment on the battle field.  Each regiment allows me to take a hero or a war machine, so a general, a wizard and a cannon later and I have near 1000 points.  A magic item or two will bring me up to a round 1000 points, just nice for quick demo games.

A Bit of a Fixer-Upper
I mentioned some damage; the knights needed extensive repairs, those lances didn't last well.  The wizard had dismounted, lost the end of his staff and his horse had lost its base, otherwise all that was needed was a few fillers in units short of the count.  As for repainting, I decided to completely redo the wizard and the scouts, (pistolliers), the rest could wait.

P.S. Just a quick note; Kings of War second edition is currently being printed, but today (Friday 10th July) they are releasing a pdf of the second edition quick play booklet.  Its free, and certain to be more than four pages long, and is available here.

P.P.S.  I should point out that the army lists are a separate download and are not quite complete.  i understand there was an issue with typos etc, and the full version will be released soon.
That said, the rules are complete, if not yet formatted quite as they will be in the finished book, so go forth and battle.

The wizard and scouts can be seen here.

Birthday Bonus

Not my birthday I hasten to add.

Heroic Maps, whose products I have mentioned before , are having a birthday sale.  They have some very nice floor plans for small dungeon bashes, and larger geomorphic products for bigger adventures.  My favourites are perhaps the encounter sized pieces. Try them out while the price is generous.

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Deadzone (now with added Martians)

I haven't posted much about actual game play yet.  I had a game of Deadzone the other week, and whilst I won't post a full batrep, here's a few pictures to show the great scenery.
My gaming buddy (sometimes known as T'Other One) had set up his awesome terrain, all I had to do was turn up with 70 points of troops, in my case Enforcers as that's all I really have painted.  First problem, I couldn't find many of my Enforcers, so had to borrow some unpainted troops.  Even so, 70 points doesn't buy many Enforcers.  I was expecting to face Plague, as I knew that was what my opponent had.  I had forgotten that he also had Mars Attacks, and that Mantic have provided game cards and stats to include them in Deadzone.
Second surprise, a Giant Stompy Robot!

Which was big enough to reach characters on tall buildings.

Towards the end of the game the Enforcer sergeant desperately tries to take down the GSR.

The game was hugely enjoyable.  Quite a lot of stopping to look up rules, but if I play more often that should improve.  As neither side knows what the other needs to do to gain victory there is a lot of second guessing.  As it happens I needed to keep more than half of my force alive for as long as possible.  So there were times when I moved troops back rather than forward to maintain this.
I was hampered by the GSR's habit of setting my troops on fire, though they were quite good at putting out the flames, just wasted time, and the Martian with Freeze Ray, who kept my heavy weapons troop out of the game for quite a while, and he was the one with the best chance of taking out the GSR.
Once my assault enforcer got behind enemy lines and started cracking Martian helmet domes, I was able to turn things around, but the game was very tense right up to the end.
Now to get some of my huge Deadzone pile painted, perhaps marauders (the orcs of the Warpath universe)

Just had a series of texts from T'other One detailing a solo campaign he has just played using the zombies and the solo 'artificial stupidity' rules.  It sounds great fun, and proof that the solo rules do work.

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

More Kickstarter Madness

Unless you have been living under an Earth Elemental for the last month or so, you are probably aware of Reaper's impending Bones 3 kickstarter campaign.

I like their minis and will be going in for this one, just like Bones 1 and Bones 2.  They have teased some lovely minis on their forum, the biggy this time looks likely to be a five headed dragon.
Happy kickwatching everyone.

Well its live and funded in around 3 minutes