June 4, 2012 by dracs
Today I delved into a game which I haven’t really played since I was twelve. Mordheim, that classic skirmish game in the ruins of Warhammer Fantasy.
My friend Khrystan ran me up a quick Witch Hunters warband, comprising of a Witch Hunter Captain, a Witch Hunter, a priest, a fanatic and two standard zealots. Oh and two dogs, because what self respecting Witch Hunter doesn’t take his pets to work?
Armed with pistols, hammers, swords and a religious fanaticism unlike that found in any Church of England, I ventured into the ruined city to face off against Khrystan’s swift (and damn annoying) Clan Eshin warband, armed with poisons, slings and an assassin which could move up to 18 inches in a single turn.
The scenario was just a standard face off between the two warbands in order to ease myself into the rules. I started off by getting my two Witch Hunters into a nearby tower to allow them to better use their ranged weaponry, leaving my zealots on one side of the tower and my dogs on the other, with the priest held back ready to enforce and offer some spiritual comfort where needed. My plan was to hold back and let the Skaven come to me, allowing me to pick them off as they approach.
Unfortunately Khrystan had other plans. His chief assassin infiltrated nearby and with his large movement range quickly scaled the tower and attacked my Witch Hunters. Thus began a hard fought battle with many parries, dodges and annoyingly low dice rolls. I brought the priest up to back up the two Witch Hunters, his Gromril armour and warhammer making him one tough opponent.
Down on the ground the zealots and the warhounds were gamely attempting to hold off the advancing horde of Clan Eshin’s finest. The Flagellant attempted to lead the charge on a threatening Black Skaven, who had been peppering the zealots with his throwing knives. Unfortunately he was intercepted by a pair of Giant Rats who proceeded to take him down with depressing ease.
Meanwhile the two dogs were similarly engaged, proving that man chose his best friend well. Eventually however, both the Zealots and the Hounds were swamped, though not without taking one or two rats with them. A rout was narrowly avoided by my Witch Hunter’s holy relic.
The sacrifice of the men and animals on the ground had not been in vane though, as it had bought the Warrior Priest and Witch Hunter Captain enough time to finish off the Master Assassin just before the other Skaven arrived on top of the tower to back him up, although not before he had taken down the other Witch Hunter.
Two Black Skaven and a Giant Rat had managed to get to the top of the tower I was defending, only to face the Captain and Priest, both of whom’s abilities turned them into close combat monsters. One of the Black Skaven and the Giant Rat attacked the Warrior Priest. However, the horrible scarring of the Priest scared the Giant Rat so much that it proved to be almost useless. But then it didn’t need to be, as a lucky strike from the Black Skaven managed to get through the Priest’s defences, leaving him stunned.
While this was happening the other luckless Black Skaven was left to face the Witch Hunter Captain, who charged in sword swinging and pistol blazing. The pistol shot got through, taking the Skaven firmly out of action and leading to a full and much longed for rout.
And thus the two remaining servants of Sigmar lived to fight another day, though with their warband now greatly diminished and the Priest suffering from what must have been one hell of a concussion.
All in all I found Mordheim to be among the best skirmish games I have played. The rules were simple and easy to get to grips with, with rules easily available from the Games Workshop site. It just goes to show that the classics still hold up in this modern world of wargaming. Considering that our game was played out on a random assortment of littered pieces of cardboard with a group of eclectic minis representing our warbands its an easy game to get into before setting out to start building a proper warband.
How would you have played this scenario? If you haven’t played Mordheim before do you think you might give it a try?
Sorry for the lack of pictures, but given the ramshackle nature of our game I thought it best to stick with the pics from the Mordheim rulebook.