Mordheim Journals: “Suffer Not The Mutant To Live!”

February 24, 2014 in Fantasy, Featured, Games Workshop, Mordheim, Warhammer Fantasy by brennon

From the Journal of Richter Haustmann…

“We thought that we had met some of our darkest foes in the meeting of the Night Goblins, those foul creatures who have an absurd love of mushrooms. While they had been dark and cruel they had been no trouble for my men however, the zealous power of Sigmar driving us ever onwards. But, Mordheim, the City of the Damned, holds more than just goblins. There are worse things in the world born of Chaos and excess and we met not one but two such sects of the beasts in the ruins.

Mordheim-Map

Word had reached my ears from scouts we had posted around the city that a warband from Marienburg had made their way into the city in the employ of a prince. The nobleman had foolishly however underestimated the kind of foes he would encounter within the city and during the night had been ambushed by the undead. Driven mad he had scarpered off into the backstreets but he had taken with him a map to a cache of wyrdstone. Sensing the opportunity to not only capture and seize this map but also potentially ransom back the prince we moved off in search of his whereabouts.

What we found however was from a living nightmare…”

The Plan…

So after week one I had a fairly robust warband of hardened and zealous warriors. Most of my miscreants had leveled up nicely and the coffers were pretty fun with around 90 gold crowns stashed under Richter’s pillow in that butcher’s shop. I hadn’t done much in terms of buying equipment for my warband in the interim with the only splash of cash being a suit of heavy armour for my great weapon wielding Ulrich Von Lichtenstein. My thinking was that if he is going to be hitting slower than most people he should be getting some protection.

With that in mind I went into my two games this week with eyes fully set on making sure most of my warriors survive the coming encounters. I knew I was going up against the Possessed (twice as it happened!) and they had some very hard hitting creatures and of course plenty of spells at their disposal.

The Drunk Prince

In terms of scenarios I had been thinking about this over the week. I wanted to do something a bit more fun, to highlight the dark comedy of Mordheim and the Warhammer world as a whole. So, I came up with the idea of a drunk prince who held knowledge of a stash of Wyrdstone somewhere in the city. The warbands would be fighting over him to get their hands on the precious stone and would get themselves a shard of it if they held him at the end of the fighting.

Of course it wasn’t going to be that simple; he was drunk after all. The prince would wander around the battlefield at the start of each players turn using a scatter dice and a d6. This would show him staggering about lost in his own little world. If a warband member could get close to him he would gain the “your my best mate!” rule and follow them around, halving their movement but allowing them to control the wandering prince. A drunk man is however somewhat prone to violence, at least this prince was, and so on the start of players turns when he was hanging around with a warband member on the roll of a one he would get angry and glass them with one of his bottles (resolved at WS3 and as a Dagger so -1 Strength). If his ‘captor’ also fell over and was knocked out or stunned then the prince would issue a “better let you rest buddy” line and be prone to wandering off again since he believed he had out drunk his new comrade.

So, let’s go capture a prince!

Game One: Witch Hunters Vs Possessed (Tzeentch)

My first game was against the Possessed who were led by a rather enigmatic Tzeentch worshiper. This has of course no effect on the game, it was just a nice bit of fluff and background. His leader wore a helmet with no eye holes but a glaring eye was emblazoned on his spear tip, as if the magical weapon saw for him. Creepy!

I started with a typical set-up for me. On one side I had all my ranged warriors with Richter and Gottfried by Sigmarite Priest nearby to bolster them should the shooting go ill. On the other side piled the rest of my warband led by Rudiger and Ulrich. This half also contained the raving Flagellants and the Slayer, Urgrim.

The Firing Line

The skirmish began quickly with both sides rushing forward to get their hands on the prince. He seemed pretty content to splash around in the pond he was sat in so the Possessed warband sent their leader flying forwards on wings of dark magic, landing next to him and wrapping a warped arm around him to spirit him away in a coming turn.

As the game moved on my ranged contingent was harassed by some rather dangerous looking pit hounds. The shortbows twanged and missed, clattering off the cobbles while Gottfried bellowed words of Sigmar to bolster himself for the coming fight. Richter however, hard pressed to get close to the Prince and the Possessed fired off his pistol taking down one of the beasts. His second, Waldemar with his trusted crossbow, did the same pinning one of the baying hounds to the ground.

On the other side of the battlefield it wasn’t going as well. My first charging Flagellant had crashed into a flail swinging dark soul who smashed it into his face and sent him sprawling across the stones. My Slayer, Urgrim had little effect either. He dived over the toppling bodies and tried to take one of the dark souls down with his twin axes. He hit twice, but failed to wound, and in return was stunned, collapsing to the floor rubbing his head.

The Mad Line

My zealots were having better luck however and despite seeing Rudiger get stuck with an arrow charged into the cultists. Swords flashed left and right and while one of them proved impossible to bring down the other mastered his blade and cut down his opponent. The prince meanwhile had been flown away by the Possessed, finding a roost on a nearby building. We had ruled that because he was flying the prince could fall on a 1 or a 2 on a dice roll, crashing to the ground with a splat. Thankfully this didn’t happen (or annoyingly from my point of view!) and the Possessed took him on a bit of a trip. At one point he did try and glass the Possessed, the reality of what was happening dawning on him I suspect, but it was of little effect.

As the game came to an end poor Urgrim the Slayer was knocked on the back of the head a little two hard and was taken out of action. My Flagellant met the same fate as did one of my zealots with swords, the Brothers Grimh. While I had lost a few members of my warband so had my opponent and he routed. We ruled that because he was holding the prince at the end despite losing he would still be guaranteed a shard of wyrdstone.

The Prince & The Possessed

As I rolled up my injuries I found that Rudiger Howard, possibly plagued by the same injury as before had another Smashed Leg and would be sitting out of the next game again. He was very injury prone. More sadness followed however as Richter rolled over the body of Urgrim and found the Dwarf had died of his blow to the head. One of the Flagellants had also bit the dust, smashed apart by a flail. The last blow came when one of the Brothers Grimh also died, his surviving sibling now more grim than ever.

Some more rolls later and I had found a fletchers in the backstreets netting myself a longbow which I promptly sold. In terms of leveling most of my warband got better and the last surviving Flagellant got ‘Kids got Talent’. I’m not sure what drove Richter to promote him to a hero but the Khornate warrior now held the moniker ‘Gnasher’ and as his upgrade roll gained Gritbastard allowing him to negate the effects of critical wounds. There was certainly a story to tell now.

Game Two: Witch Hunters Vs Possessed (Nurgle)

My second game was also against the Possessed with a bit more of a different slant. Gone were the pit hounds and in their place a pair of bleating Beastmen. Their Possessed was no less dangerous and he was flanked by two surly looking warriors that shone a sickly greenish yellow in the waning daylight.

Protect the Coach!

The scenario we were playing involved getting a carriage holding an important member of the Sigmarite clergy off the other side of the board. I was in charge of this horseless carriage that we said had lost it’s horse in an earlier battle (not that we didn’t have a horse for it of course).  Because of this we had it moving 2d3 inches every turn to simulate it’s hard going. If I was to get the carriage off the other board edge or rout the enemy then I would get a Tear of Shallaya (Immune to Poison for one game). If my opponent succeeded in taking the carriage or routing me he would get a Power Scroll (+1 to spell casting for one game).

In the interim period between the last game and this I had rooted out another Slayer, Storri, to join the warband and Richter had hired the use of two Bounty Hunters (one of the new options for the Witch Hunter warband) to come and work for him. They were two surly gentlemen named Hund and Katze. The Bounty Hunters came with manacles for dragging off fallen heroes and I armed them with pistols and swords to make them hunting all the more interesting. I will have them painted up for next week.

Flanking Action

And so we set up for the fight. I once again split up the force and had a mass of men protecting the carriage while the ranged warriors as well as the new hero Gnasher held the other side for a flanking attack. As the battle began we surged forward and found that all of us were out of range to get any shots off from missile weapons. The next turn was very different. The Possessed bowmen held the higher ground and let off a couple of arrows pinning Ulrich to the ground and leaving him slumped against a burnt out building. My new hero Gnasher then charged into a building across the street where he lashed out with his weapon only to be knocked down by the warriors within. This was also joined by a fusillade of fire from crossbow and bow which managed to knock down both of the opponents bowmen. Even my Bounty Hunter stood up from a previous glancing blow and fired his pistol.

Berserk Doormen

Soon enough battle was truly joined and Storri charged into the buildings doorway with Gnasher and made short work of one of the warriors saving Gnasher’s rather unholy life. I’m sure Storri wasn’t think of that when he did it. With the coach pushing up further I had to enter combat too and Richter waded in with sword flashing. His first scuffle proved ineffectual but was able to use his Swordsman skill to cut down his foe in the end. Gottfried Von Otun the Priest of Sigmar proved his worth once again and with his blazing hammer managed to bring down two of his enemies bellowing prayers of Sigmar as he did. Might of Sigmar is an awesome prayer to have!

The Might of Sigmar!

With the amount of casualties I had caused it eventually forced a rout and while the Possessed player had passed his rout test he didn’t think he could hold up against the furious Sigmarites and fled the field. With that I only had Ulrich downed and claimed the prize of that Tear of Shallaya.

I ended up making a fair bit of money and while I didn’t have anything to replace I did have to roll for the injury Ulrich had suffered. He seemed to have been rather numbed by the arrow that had struck him and was now suffering from Melancholia meaning he had -1 Initiative. Not so bad for a man who was striking last most of the time with his Great Weapon anyway.

Planning Ahead

I now sit (after paying Storri) on a healthy 94 gold crowns and I am wondering what to buy with it. My Flagellant Gnasher had managed to get to Toughness 4 after his upgrade during the fighting and while I wanted to buy heavy armour for my Bounty Hunters it was a bit too expensive. So, I think I’m going to buy some more swords for the Bounty Hunters so they can duel wield in combat and then keep the rest in case anything more goes wrong which it pretty much will!

Next week we’re looking to play some multiplayer battles including my Witch Hunter warband and the store owners against the two Possessed warbands I played above. It should be quite the righteous condemnation of the wicked!

Bounty Hunter

“Who would have thought that the strange and deranged cultist of the ruinous powers would raise through the ranks and lead others into battle. He still has the glint of evil in his eye but he seems to have mastered some speech of a kind. He now growls orders to the others and where he would once cower and snarl beneath the crossbow of Waldemar he is more tenacious than before.

After all this ruination and bloodshed at the hands of the power of Chaos I had Gottfried check all of the men to see if they had contracted anything from our engagements. Thankfully mutation has not taken hold. It would be a shame to have to stake any of them to a pyre and send them into Sigmar’s world just yet.

Storri is, as you might imagine, much the same as Urgrim as Slayers go. He is no less angry and determined and scoffed at the death of a fellow Dwarf to something as pitiful as a dark soul. He claims that he will bring down one of the Possessed or indeed an Ogre we have been hearing about around the campfires.

I was most pleased that we were able to deliver the Sister in her ramshackle coach to the burnt down temple deep within mutant held territory. She had professed that all within were devote and had held the temple despite the many attempted incursions. I was not so sure.

She asked me not to, but I insisted, and so strode into the temple with my men. Inside were not devote worshipers of Sigmar or Sisters of righteous belief. All of them, the maids and servants too, had been infected and changed by the terror of this city. The Sister pleaded with me as I set my men to ending their miserable existences but her screams and sobs were nothing but the words of a liar and a traitor. So the temple burned.

We raided the vault of course before leaving finding a vial of the Shallayan medicine she had spoke of. Everything else was rotten and warped beyond use, at least to the devote. As we moved away we saw the temple burning from afar and the screams of mutants and other unfortunates who had been caught in the ensuing inferno. Sigmar worked in mysterious ways, spreading the fire to other houses to root out the unbelievers and the heretics.

Our work however is far from over.

Next week – more Mordheim mayhem!

"I'm not sure what drove Richter to promote him to a hero..."

"Might of Sigmar is an awesome prayer to have!"