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Demonsub is Five Leagues From The Borderlands

Demonsub is Five Leagues From The Borderlands

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Project Blog by Demonsub Cult of Games Member

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About the Project

A chronicle of my journey into the solo wargame of Five Leagues From The Borderlands, from choosing and painting miniatures to battle reports and the goings on between games.

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Campaign Turn 11

Tutoring 1
Skill 2
Idea 2
No Comments

The people were unhappy around Shieldstown.It was the disappearances, travellers and farmers had gone missing. What’s worse was some of the grain destined for the town’s bakers had disappeared and metals for the town’s smithies. People would start to grow hungry and weapons were at a shortage. 

It turned out that an ogre had moved into a deserted barrow and had been raiding nearby farms and caravans. Something had to be done. 

This was all related to Gregnil the dwarf as he roamed the streets with a member of the town guard late one night. The group had once again fallen on hard times and they needed to earn a few extra gold just to pay the bills. The guard went on to explain that a contract had been put out by the people of Shieldstown to find and slay the ogre and there was a reward. So far no one had taken this up.

A few days later Petra the feral entered the main entrance of the tomb. Waiting a few minutes for her eyes to adjust to the darkness she pressed on through the passages ways and found herself in a large room. An open coffin lay in the corner, complete with its decayed resident, and another coffin still closed, was nearby. It was apparent that someone had been living here and there were tracks leading out. Following these to another chamber an enormous head suddenly appeared from out of the darkness swiftly followed by the rest of the ogre. Quickly retreating back towards the entrance, Petra almost ran into the others with the ogre striding just behind. Everyone readied for action.

The plan was to shoot at the ogre while keeping a good distance away to avoid its brutal strength. This was easier said than done in the cramped confines of the tunnels. Petra managed to wound the beast with a shot of her longbow causing a loud roar to echo down the tunnels.

Kiri reached for an arrow to shoot but her quiver was empty, she must have dropped her arrows somewhere in the dark. All she could do now was not get lost and keep away from the ogre, so she kept close to Petra.

Kremmel cast his spells causing arrows and stones to be attracted to the monster making shooting at it a little easier.

Suddenly the ogre was upon Gregnil, but fighting defensive Gregnil managed to get away without taking a hit. He quickly let off a shot of his self bow and wounded the ogre.

The ogre was bleeding quite a lot now and very angry. 

Kremmel found himself trapped in a corner and the ogre was upon him. He tried his best but was soon beaten senseless. 

Various shots hit the ogre with no effect. Arrows and stones stuck out of the ogre but he either didn’t  feel them or he ignored them such was his wrath. 

Then Dar, the barbarian, was fighting for his life as the ogre came out from nowhere, Dar went down with a blow to the head.

Gregnil, Petra and Kiri backed away from the ogre. Now Gregnil was the only one left with any arrows. Shot after shot failed to bring the monster down until, when it was almost upon him, an arrow found its mark and the massive beast fell to the ground and didn’t move. It was dead.

Dar came around having only been knocked out but Kremmel was worse. He had been severely mauled, nothing life threatening but, with a few broken bones, he’d need a good few weeks to heal up. 

Searching the ogre’s lair various precious metals, sacks of grain and furs were found. Clearly evidence of the looting and the problems the monster had caused in the area. 

Returning back to town Gregnil felt like he was rich. The group had a good amount of coin now thanks to their success. Kremmel had been badly injured and Hands was still healing up from his injuries a few weeks ago so adventuring would be limited for a while. News had come that the outpost of Hillsend was badly in need of supplies so if they were up for it a simple journey might be in order. He’d see what the others would say when he got back to the inn.

Dungeon Terrain Ideas

Tutoring 3
Skill 3
Idea 3
No Comments

In Five Leagues From The Borderlands the game suggests the use of dungeon floorplans for certain types of games, such as exploring delves, which are basically multi-level dungeons or cave systems. Monster lares and site battles, such as an old castle or house, can also use dungeon tiles if so inclined.

I’ve been on the lookout for some suitable tiles to buy, or possibly to salvage from a board game but nothing really showed up, and getting a board game just for its playing surface seemed very expensive. I didn’t want to go with a full 3d plastic layout as this would get very expensive fast and require a lot of work to paint and make ready, not to mention taking up a lot of valuable storage space.

I did look into making my own from card and free to print floor plans but nothing I found was what I liked or was in a multi-layer pdf which I cannot access due to being tablet only as I don’t use a computer.

I did find a random online dungeon generator similar to Perilous Shores which I used to create the map for my campaign and I’ve already talked about in an earlier post.

The dungeon generator, called One Page Dungeon, produced these layouts after tweaking some of the settings.

I really like the old school, simple look of these and my thinking was to maybe print these out when I needed a dungeon and use counters or some other representation for the warband and enemies other than miniatures to play games when set in a dungeon. 

 

Then I discovered TTCombat did dungeon tiles in mdf. This wasn’t too expensive and wouldn’t take much work in painting up. The amount you got with set A was quite a lot and would produce many layouts, just what I was after. Also, they could be packed away using very little space. I ordered a set and painted them up.

Dungeon Terrain Ideas
Dungeon Terrain Ideas

I’m really happy with the results.

Dungeon Terrain Ideas

I added some of my scatter terrain I use with Frostgrave and it fits really well.

 

This is just what I was looking for and is going to be very useful for Five Leagues From The Borderlands and I’m looking forward to using it in my games.

 

Here’s some more pictures playing with a different set up.

Dungeon Terrain Ideas
Dungeon Terrain Ideas
Dungeon Terrain Ideas

Campaign Turn 9 & 10

Tutoring 2
Skill 3
Idea 3
2 Comments

After the events of the previous battle the party was pretty shot up. Petra the Feral was still healing up but Dar the barbarian was back on his feet and itching for some activity. The rest of the party were in the fields helping out. It was a nice change of pace and helped to pay some of the living expenses.

There was enough coin for a blacksmith to hammer out a few dents in a damaged piece of armour and to fix a few leather buckles.

Kremmel the wizard decided to sell some of his mystical trinkets, little items he carried to help with his casting but never used. 

Travelling and exploring were not an option while Petra was still injured so the rest of the group decided to go on patrol near Shieldstown. Before leaving Petra let Kiri take her longbow.

While out on patrol the party came upon a stone circle, but all was not quiet. A group of Gnolls were performing some sort of vile right and needed to be stopped. Arrows were loosed to little effect, Kiri being inexperienced. The gnolls began to move quickly around towards the party, using the standing stones as cover. 

Suddenly they were surrounded. Kiri managed to kill one or two gnolls but the group were soon overwhelmed. Kremmel cast fear several times on the gnolls but to little effect. The gibbering horde had safety in numbers.

Back at Shieldstown the party licked their wounds. Thankfully the gnolls hadn’t stuck around and finished them off, maybe believing they’d killed them. Kremmel believed it was solely down to good luck that he was still alive but that certainly won’t last. Hands was the only one who had taken significant injuries but nothing that wouldn’t heal, it would take a while though. Dar’s bastard sword was also damaged and would need the attention of a blacksmith before it could be used again. 

Things were pretty bad.

 


Later that week while a scholar of renown was passing through causing a stir among certain parts of the town, the group were on night watch duty, taking care of drunks and petty thieves. It was the only way they’d be able to pay the innkeeper this week, as funds were very low. As Kremmel was on his way to sell his last mystical trinket he was stopped by one of the nobles of the town. As a thank you for their efforts a donation from the people was given, the sum of 2 gold marks.

This was enough to pay for medical healing for Petra so she was now back on her feet. It was also enough to buy a couple of slings for Dar and Kiri, as Petra would be taking her longbow back. It was very apparent that combat at range might be the best solution.

It was time to go on patrol leaving only the injured Hands in town. Rumours of a grim looking knight terrorising travellers in some local woods were heard. The group went to investigate.

While following a path through the woods near some crossroads howls were heard. A pack of wild dogs came running through the trees followed by the grim green knight. Petra drops two hounds with her bow almost straight off, and with the help of Kremmel’s fear spell two more hounds run off, tails between their legs. The knight was spotted in the distance, his armour slowing him down. Several hounds rushed at Petra, then the knight was suddenly upon her. She managed to fend them off but suffered a slight wound for her efforts. Meanwhile Kiri and Gregnil the dwarf were fighting four other hounds. Kiri killed several, both in combat and with her sling, while Gregnil suffered a bite from one of the hounds.

Dar rushed in to help Petra, and killed a hound with his sling. Taking the chance, Petra hopped over a nearby wall, rushed around and shot the knight in the back, killing him. This caused a nearby hound to flee into the woods.

Only one last hound was still alive and wounded at that. Petra ran up and promptly shot it over a wall and killed it. Mission successful, and a much needed moral booster.

A longbow was found on the knight’s body which Kiri takes.

Upon returning to Shieldstown news of the knight’s death had spread. It turned out that this knight had been a notorious villain and the group are now seen as local heroes.

Things were looking good.

Campaign Turn 9 & 10

Campaign Turn 8

Tutoring 2
Skill 3
Idea 3
No Comments

While camping outside of Tidemouth our party was not idle, roots and berries were found which helped subsidise the food needed for the week. Also an ironroot plant was discovered and harvested which could bolster one’s constitution when eaten before a battle.

More importantly, suspicious tracks were discovered, animal-like but as if walking on two feet, they went off in the direction of Shieldstown. 

Just as the party was getting ready to follow them a local fisherman waved them down. He said he’d lost an item somewhere and would be grateful if our heroes were to search for it, a small necklace stolen from him in the night. 

The journey and tracks were followed without incident and soon near a deserted guard tower outside of Shieldstown. There the party ran into the skirmishing pack of gnolls who had made those tracks. Their captain was meeting with what was known as a scheming heretic, a gnoll shaman of sorts, no doubt planning some evil scheme. One of the gnolls was spotted burying something near a rocky outcrop. 

It was time to fight and see what had been buried.

Campaign Turn 8

Quickly seizing the initiative our heroes let off a few arrows but all missed.

Kremmel then moved up to start searching the area for the buried item but didn’t find anything.

Bad luck hit as Gregnil discovered that he was yet again out of usable arrows.

The Heretic pointed a clawed finger at Kremmel who found himself acting against his will, turned and attacked Dar, who defended himself easily pushing Kremmel away.

Dar charged a group of gnolls around a rock followed by Hands. A gnoll with a bow soon died.

One of the gnolls seeing his fellow archer cut down decided to give up and run for the hills leaving its friends to their own fate.

Two gnolls charge Dar who swung his sword in a big arch cleaving both in two. A third then ran in and took Dar down. Hands nearby was knocked unconscious by a fourth gnoll.

Kremmel, feeling his old self again raised his arm and cast a frighten spell on the enemy causing another archer to run off.

Gregnil, over on the right side, suddenly found himself in combat with the Heretic before falling into unconsciousness by a blow to his head.

While Kiri was searching for the buried item she didn’t see the enemy captain come up from behind and she too was taken down.

Suddenly just like that the fight had gone ill. Only Kremmel and Petra were left standing, fighting frantically, surrounded by gnolls. Kremmel soon went down but Petra wasn’t about to give up without a fight. She leveled her bow and shot an arrow right through the eye of the gnoll captain killing him instantly. The Heretic upon seeing this raised his clawed finger once again, charming her. Unable to move Petra defended as best as she could but it was only a matter of time before the gnolls took her down.

When the party came too the gnolls and the Heretic were long gone, away to enact their vile plans. Whatever had been buried had been dug up and taken away.

Petra had taken a vicious wound and would be out for a good month, while Dar had taken many light cuts but would be back fighting fit in a week or so. The others were lucky. Two suits of light armour had done their job but were now unwearable until a blacksmith knocked them back into shape. Luckily Gregnil and Hands had only been knocked out and so were otherwise unhurt.

Through all that she’d been through Petra’s resolve and determination was hardened.

The party entered Shieldstown and kicked their wounds.

Campaign Turn 8

Campaign Turn 7 or How A Giant Toad Chased Me from A Haunted Cemetery

Tutoring 3
Skill 4
Idea 4
No Comments

The week started off well. The tavern owner was in a good mood and wanted to show off to all how great his hospitality was. It was free food and board for the next two weeks. This was starting to get embarrassing now but who were our heroes to say no.

With good country air and all that free food the warband were now back to their old fighting fit health. Kiri visited the village healer to remedy the last of her injuries and with some of the money they had earned it was agreed to get Kiri some light armour as she was the only one without.

It was time to go on a patrol of the area and see what was out there near the town. After travelling to some woods a few leagues away the party chanced upon an overgrown track. Upon following it they found themselves outside the walls of an old cemetery. Noises and groans within suggested further exploration.

Campaign Turn 7 or How A Giant Toad Chased Me from A Haunted Cemetery

The goal was to explore enough of the cemetery then get out. Petra moved in first slowly scouting out the entrance area before reporting back. Turns out the place was occupied, shuffling dead could be seen patrolling in groups back and forth between the buildings and the tombs, along with a deranged looking man.

The party moved in heading up along the left side of the cemetery, with Petra taking an occasional pot shot as the undead revenants shuffled past. Luckily due to the low light it was easy to keep out of their site.

The going was slow as the grounds were overgrown with trip hazards everywhere. Petra leading the group reached a blocked gateway and noticed the glint of something up near an iron fence at the top of the cemetery. It was not unguarded as she soon spotted three revenants motionless around the object. 

Dar moved up to join her as they both advanced to a broken wall, where they soon uncovered a hidden stash of camping supplies. A nice find.

Taking careful aim Petra let loose an arrow but it bounced off the revenant’s tough flesh.

Kremmel, some distance away, noticed something near the centre of the cemetery. Moving closer he spotted a perfectly good fencing sword under a stone which he took. He was also feeling uneasy, as he could sense a build up of magic, possibly emanating from the mad human. Luckily the patrolling dead seemed to be keeping to the right side of the cemetery.

With a mad laugh there was a loud pop and a giant toad suddenly appeared not far behind the revenants near Dar and Petra. The revenants charged Dar, taking him down then charged Petra forcing her back. Gregnil charged in to clear some space. The toad, noticing this, hopped towards Gregnil. To make matters worse the two groups of patrolling dead started to head over in the party’s direction. 

With half of the cemetery explored it was time to get out.

Everyone started to move back towards the entrance but the toad quickly caught up with Gregnil taking him down then just as Hands was near the gate and escape he too was taken down.

Campaign Turn 7 or How A Giant Toad Chased Me from A Haunted Cemetery

Several hours later Kremmel, Kiri and Petra were joined at their campsite by Dar, Gregnil and Hands. It turns out after they were knocked out their enemies had lost interest and left. The only casualty was Gregnil’s helmet which was damaged.

Upon returning to the village of Tidemouth they were denied entry. Several villagers had come down with a virulent disease so no one was allowed to enter or leave the village. It was time to set camp a few miles down the road.

Campaign Turn 7 or How A Giant Toad Chased Me from A Haunted Cemetery

Playing Catch-up

Tutoring 4
Skill 5
Idea 6
No Comments

It’s been quite a while since the last update since I’ve been busy with other projects, but good news; I now have the physical book.

Playing Catch-up

I played through turns 4, 5 and 6 all of which didn’t involve any battles. I chose not to fight as since the last battle my warband was in bad shape and needed to spend time healing.

Today I’ve just completed turn 7, including a battle which will get a run down in a separate post.

Turn 4

While a gambling craze took off in the small hamlet of Hillsend our band was preparing to travel, to make the journey to Tidemouth and bring the residents of that village much needed supplies, and with the promise of a week’s free bed and food, who could say no.

Kremmel did have a small breakthrough. After studying his spell books he figured out how to cast spells with a higher degree of success.

Food had been low and sleeping was even lower as gold was at its lowest. Kremmel was not happy about the situation and felt disgruntled. It certainly was time to leave.

Just as they were about to leave a man stopped them saying he had a job for them. There was an item he needed retrieving from an unexplored location to the north east, but time was of the essence. Kremmel turned him down.

The journey began but so did the weather. The going got slower and eventually it was agreed to set camp. They were only halfway there so it was going to take another week to reach Tidemouth.

The 4 in red is where our party camped.The 4 in red is where our party camped.

Turn 5

The weather had improved and Petra had done some scouting. Reporting back she said the going should be much easier.

Living off the land with two archers, finding food was no problem, and some animal skins were kept to sell on and make some much needed gold.

The party reached Tidemouth and delivered the supplies, the animal skins were sold and food and a warm bed was provided. Things were looking up. Reports of a delve somewhere near Gateswood were heard and recorded on the map.

Playing Catch-up

Turn 6

Resting up and healing nicely the party helped with the harvest in the nearby fields and were even paid for their trouble. Once again food and bed was provided free of charge by the grateful villagers for bringing them the supplies.

More work was spent in the fields earning more gold. 

Later in the week a caravan arrived in the village with news of Shieldstown to the south. There’s a travelling trader with exquisite rare goods to sell but he’ll be moving on in a couple of weeks so don’t miss out.

With most of the party healed it was almost time to get back to their adventure.

Playing Catch-up

I Won a Golden Button

Tutoring 3
Skill 3
Idea 3
2 Comments
I Won a Golden Button

A big thanks for this, and it’s very weird seeing my work on the telly on Sunday.

More adventures coming soon, things have slowed down as Sláine has pushed Five Leagues to the sides a little.

Week 3

Tutoring 3
Skill 5
Idea 5
2 Comments

Already low on coin the mood was bad with the group. Hands had gotten into a fight with an off duty soldier which meant he’d had to pay recompense of a gold mark then the landlord decided to put the price of their room at the tavern which they could afford, so everyone had to find shelter where they could. Gregnil the dwarf, already injured, was ready to leave, and was only persuaded to stay with the group by taking him to the healing house and getting him patched up, which cost the party’s last gold coin.

There was nothing for it but to see what odd jobs were available around town. Dar managed to find work chopping wood but only managed to make a single mark.

A few days later Kremmel announced that he had found work. They were to patrol the roads a few miles around town as there had been talk of a local robber band “persuading people to pay their tax” hired by a local baron.

Week 3

The main objective was to take out the leader. There was also an unknown quantity of thieves some way off but approaching, so things would have to be done quickly.

As the warband moved across towards the leader various shots and bolts were exchanged but all missed.

Finally one of Petra’s shots hit, only wounding the thief next to the leader. With this distraction, supported by Hands, Dar charged forward and engaged the leader. Blows were exchanged until finally Dar managed to wound the leader but received a wound himself. This leader was tough.

With arrows flying back and forth the rest of the warband moved forward, except Gregnil, who took shelter by a tree aiming his bow.

Suddenly a nearby thief rushed in slashing with his knife wounding Dar and taking him out of action.

Most of the rest of the warband jumped on the offending thief but he managed to escape.

Near Gregnil a thief got close enough to charge, wounding Gregnil before dying himself. Gregnil then took a bolt to the knee and was out of the fight.

Petra was now out of ammo and can only watch on as first Hands then Kiri attacked the thief leader, with Hands suffering a wound and Kiri collapsing to the ground with a nasty gash.

Two more thieves arrived and entered the battle while the others moved up. Great, reinforcements. Petra charged the wounded thief near the leader and killed him. Taking his chance to eliminate the leader, who is now by himself Kremmel and Hands both charged but again somehow the leader managed to defend himself. 

Petra then charged the leader, finally killing him. Objective achieved.

A bolt suddenly appeared in Hands taking him down then the two thieves which had recently arrived attacked Kremmel taking him out.

Petra was now by herself facing off with the two fresh thieves and two crossbowmen. It didn’t look good. 

But luck had turned, seeing the leader go down was too much for one of the crossbowmen and he turned tail and fled.

Both thieves charged and Petra killed them both. This was enough for the last crossbowman who fled after his companion. Victory!

Petra helped the others lick and heal their wounds. Most were light wounds, but bad enough that some would heal only after a few weeks, while Kiri was more severely wounded and needed the last remaining silvertree leaf to staunch the flow of blood. She’ll be out and resting up for the next month.

Week 3

Looking over the battlefield a single gold mark was found along with a potion Kremmel identified as a ferret’s drink, something that would make you quicker for a time. There was also a fine looking warhammer which the group took.

On the way back to town Dar was chatting on how he was starting to read the battle more clearly while Gregnil felt he was getting quicker at making decisions in the heat of battle.

Back at Hillsend news reached the group that a village to the south east called Tidemouth was badly in need of supplies. If the adventurers could assist they would have their stay in Tidemouth paid for, for a whole week, not to mention their reputation which would go up.

The Adventure Begins

Tutoring 3
Skill 5
Idea 5
2 Comments

Week 1

Making their way down the pass with finally the small fort border fort known as Hillsend in sight Gregnil pointed to something in the distance. Kremmel squinted, trying to make something out. It appeared to be beyond the tree line below. Marking it on the map, it would be important to at least check out.

Hillsend actually had a small civilian population as well as the small guard force stationed there. Quite a few traders had set up but right now money was tight for Mortay’s Raiders. They quickly found out that a duke to the south had recently been taking the fight to the enemy and successfully raided a small gnoll camp killing many. A small win for the region and a good moral booster. There was excited talk of it all over the town.

The Adventure Begins

Week 2

They turned the room upside down but still couldn’t find it. Two gold marks were missing. They’d only started with five. It was then that Petra noticed the splintered wood on the window frame and the muddy boot print on the floor, thieves had struck during the night.

Talking with the landlord, it appears the thieves had been having their way all through the area with supposedly a camp somewhere in the hills to the north.

Carefully Kremmel presented one gold mark and handed it to the landlord, as the others looked on. That would pay for the next week’s food and board, but just. Bargaining had been hard but the landlord had relented, feeling sorry for their ill fortunes. Mortay’s Rangers were down to their last two gold marks. 

Taking that night with the locals the Rangers managed to narrow down the location of the thieve’s camp after hearing many tales of their crimes in the area. 

The next day Dar was found practicing and sparring with several soldiers and their sergeant. A few women looked on, they were most impressed by his musclearity and the length of his sword.

The plan had been to ride a patrol and get the lay of the land before moving down into the lower lands but their gold had been stolen and they wanted it back, so it was that the Rangers went off to raid the camp.

The Adventure Begins

As Mortay’s Rangers started sneaking forward Gregnil the dwarf was spotted, so much for the element of surprise.

Gregnil took one more step getting behind a statue and shot at what he took for the enemy leader, wounding him while an archer next to the leader shot back but missed. 

As shouts went up, thieves started moving forwards, running from cover to cover. The leader rushed forwards but was promptly shot dead by Petra the feral bunny.

Kremmel started to work his magic trying to sow a sense of fear into the other thieves but with strength of numbers none fled.

Dar and Hands together move forward to defend a gap between some ruins.

A vicious thief, who appears to have taken command of the others, rushed up to Kiri the apprentice as she was making her way to Gregnil and attacked, taking her out of action. The lieutenant then dropped as Petra shot and killed him.

Dar was in full swing (with his sword) as several thieves try to attack, one taking a wound for his troubles. 

One of the thieves had had enough and ran for the hills.

The Adventure Begins

Shots were exchanged between Gregnil and both the enemy archers but none hit, with Grengnil having shot his last arrow. He drew his sword and shouldered his bow.

One of the thieves got lucky and Dar was taken out of action. With Dar out of the way the others quickly swamped Hands and he was taken down.

A thief then charged Gregnil who wounded the thief before Petra killed him with her bow.

Kremmel still weaving his fear magic and with the loss of another thief caused both of the  archers to run from the camp.

Petra was now out of ammo and watched as Gregnil charged a nearby thief, wounding him.

Kremmel’s eyes and nose were now bleeding from his exertions with casting too much magic but no more thieves were ready to flee. As the other thieves move up the remaining heroes realise they could not win and fled, promising to return when they were stronger.

The Adventure Begins

Luckily Dar and Kiri were only knocked unconscious and weren’t seriously injured but Hands took a nasty cut. With the help of some silvertree leaf he’ll heal in a couple of weeks but won’t be fit for work until then.

Petra was feeling good after that fight and feels like she has made some good progress in her fighting abilities. 

Now with only two gold marks left, Mortay’s Rangers make their way back to town. As they entered through the gates a messenger approached them. It appears someone wants their help but time is of the essence. They are to find this individual a day or so’s journey to the south. Kremmel marked it on his map.

The Adventure Begins

The Starter Scenario

Tutoring 5
Skill 6
Idea 6
2 Comments

This is a simple practice scenario with two battles, the first with only 4 warband members and the second with all of them, to try out the rules and play a simple battle without any risk or harm to your characters. There’s no treasure or XP up for grabs but you are awarded a Story Point for playing. Story Points are spent to allow rerolls either in a battle or when rolling on a table during the campaign. They are quite rare, so the opportunity to get an extra one before the real game starts is nice.

Battle 1

Battle 1 setupBattle 1 setup

Turn 1

Dar moves forward to the broken ruins at the bottom of the hill, then all of the skeletons advance onto the other side of the hill, with the archer taking a potshot at Hands, only temporarily stunning him.

Gregnil takes a shot and wounds the skeleton archer.

Turn 2

Kremmel points a finger at a nearby skeleton and casts Mark, making it easier to shoot for this turn but Gregnil fails to take advantage of this and misses, and as he rolled a 1 is now out of ammo.

Then the skeleton archer shoots at Dar, wounding and stunning him, making him less effective in the forthcoming combat as a skeleton charges him, but luckily it’s a draw and he steps back.

Another skeleton charges Kremmel and takes him out of action.

Hands moves up next to Dar, attacks the skeleton and kills it.

Turn 3

The skeleton archer on the hill shoots at Hands, wounding and stunning him. 

The skeleton that attacked Kremmel moves and attacks Gregnil but Gregnil wins and counterattack over the fence killing the skeleton. Another skeleton charges Gregnil but is driven back. Gregnil then charges over the fence and kills the skeleton.

The only skeleton left is the archer on the hill, which Dar charges and kills. 

Victory to me.

 

Battle 2

Battle 2 setupBattle 2 setup

Turn 1

Petra, the bunny archer feral, moves up to the top of the hill with the tomb for cover and shoots at the skeleton archer in the ruins but misses. Both skeleton archers return shots of their own, all missing.

The rest of the skeletons all advanced forward.

Hands and Dar both move around the bottom of the hill to try to separate a few skeletons away from Petra.

Turn 2

Petra runs back down the hill to avoid the incoming skeletons.

The skeleton archer in the ruins moves forward a little and shoots Dar but misses, while the other archer shoots at Petra but also misses.

Two skeletons move towards Petra while three go after Dar and Hands. 

Kremmel casts Mark on a skeleton approaching Kiri, near Petra and Gregnil kills it with an arrow.

Hands charges a nearby skeleton, stunning the skeleton but is himself driven back. Dar seizes the opportunity and rushes in and kills the skeleton. It’s all going quite well.

Turn 3

Kremmel has nothing much he can do so moves to the top of the hill unworried by arrow fire as he can take cover behind the tomb, meaning the skeleton would need a 6 to hit. Guess what, one of the skeleton archers shoots, scores a 6 and rolls to wound and takes Kremmel out of action.

The other archer shoots at Dar and takes him out of action. 

The last skeleton near Petra charges, only forcing Petra back. 

At the bottom of the hill, Hands is facing two skeletons, he forces one back but the other one rushes in and kills him.

The tables have turned and my luck ran out. Petra, Kiri and Gregnil all head towards the table edge and leave the battle.

The skeletons have won.

 

Afterthoughts 
Well, that was fun. The game is pretty quick to play and the games don’t last long at all. I think I got a bit over confident towards the end of the last battle thinking I was close to winning but then my luck turned. If this had been a “for real campaign scenario “ I would have had to roll to see if any casualties were injured or dead, and I may have also had to roll to see what happened to those who ran off the table.

I didn’t use the rules for enemy morale at all as I was fighting undead and they don’t really know such a thing as self preservation.

Next will be the start of the actual campaign and true adventure.

The Map

Tutoring 7
Skill 6
Idea 8
2 Comments

One of the fun things with this game is that it asks you to make a map of the area you’ll be exploring. When I discovered this I was pretty excited and started playing around with some ideas even before I got to that part of the book. 

The game does give a framework of how to build your map, like rolling for number of settlements and size, add a delve, an unexplored location, and add enemy camps but it’s up to you where to place them. It also asks to break the map up into areas, such as hexes, to give an idea if you need to travel to a distant location or not.

The author, in a recent blog, gives additional thoughts on creating your map. This, I believe, is new to third edition.

In the Facebook community many people are using Inkarnate, an online map making program but it turns out it won’t run in a browser on my iPad, you need to run it on a PC, which I don’t use. Someone else did mention a random online map generator with slight customisation called Perilous Shores, which I tried and quite liked. I ended up using the github version which worked better on the iPad. I used this program to generate the land and terrain.

I used the iPad image app Pixelmator to create and place icons and text onto the map. As new locations are found during play I can go back into Pixelmator and add or remove stuff to the map quite easily as everything is its own layer.

 

So here’s the map I came up with, which I’m pretty happy with. I did try a coloured in version but I like the black and white one better.

The Map

For each of the settlements there was a further roll to determine the nature of that settlement. 

Starting from the top of the map we have;

Gateswood – a small hamlet that functions as a market town once per week for the many small farms that surround it. 

Hillsend – a small fortified outpost defending the road through the Barren Hills between the Untamed Coast and the lands to the west. Although there are enough soldiers to defend the outpost there’s not enough to venture out and mount any concerted action. The Warband will be starting near here.

Tydemouth – A scattered fishing community rather than a village.

Shieldstown – The largest settlement in the Untamed Coast, a walled town fortified with enough troops to form an adequate defence, for now. 

 

The locations of three camps are also known, chosen from a list of enemies in the book, matched to my miniature collection. There are also three hideouts which are unknown but may be discovered in play, and added to the map later.

The red cross marks my warband's starting location.The red cross marks my warband's starting location.

I’m looking forward to tracking my progress on the map and adding many new discoveries in time. I’ve printed out the map and will be tracking my location by marking on it in red pen. I love this idea and it really feels like I have a whole land to explore.

Mortay’s Rangers

Tutoring 5
Skill 9
Idea 7
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Mortay’s Rangers

The land to the east, known as The Untamed Coast is crying out for help. Evil Cultists summon and bind the dark undead to do their bidding, bands of Gnolls raid farms and attack travellers on the road, and the  Barbarians to the lands of the cold south are raiding more and more.

Resources are tight and the King has few soldiers to spare defending his own kingdom and so the call went out for heroes to assemble and venture forth and help turn the tide.

Kremmel MortayKremmel Mortay

Few would have expected Kremmel Mortay to answer the call, but Kremmel knew there was ancient arcane knowledge and treasure to be found in the Untamed Coast. He would lead a warband and tame the untamed.

Dar SwordarmDar Swordarm

Dar Swordarm was the first to join with Kremmel. Many said Dar was a true hero, always the first to help others, whether to kill the head of a snake cult or destroy a stepped pyramid full of magically maddened berserker men terrorising small towns, he was there saving the day, swinging his huge sword. A good old fashioned hero.

Petra Hopshot and Gregnil SureshotPetra Hopshot and Gregnil Sureshot

Petra Hopshot and Gregnil Sureshot were both next to join. The team of archers were well known throughout the kingdom. The odd looking couple of a feral and a duskling had been campaigning for years, whether working as scouts for patrolling armies or guarding a town near the borderlands from raiders.

It is unknown how or when the two first met, and why they both left their peoples.  It’s a secret neither of them are ready to tell. They trust each other implicitly as each has saved the life of the other many times.

Hands (“Like feet but at the other end of your body”)Hands (“Like feet but at the other end of your body”)

The four heroes set out on the long road east for The Untamed Lands. It wasn’t too long before they met a man known only as Hands (“Like feet but at the other end of your body”) at town one night, who after a drinking session, found himself signed up with the warband having agreed on a thirst for adventure. 

KiriKiri

Not long later a young woman named Kiri begged to join up and be apprenticed to Kremmel. As an act of good faith she presented part of a map with a location of an ancient delve to the north of the Barren Hills in the Untamed Coast. When asked how she came upon this map, Kiri said that it had been in the family for years, supposedly brought back from her great uncle who journeyed there in his youth and barely escaped with his life. This delve had all the signs of hiding some of the very ancient lore that Kremmel was searching for so he agreed to take Kiri on but would bide his time before divulging any of his secrets to her.

Mortay’s Rangers as Hands nicknamed the warband were now six strong and the mysteries of the Untamed Coast was ahead. Adventure awaited.

Beginnings

Tutoring 8
Skill 5
Idea 10
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The rulebook for the third edition recently went on pre-order from the Modiphius site, so, since I’ve been waiting for this from when I first heard about it last year, I didn’t hesitate to go for it. I won’t receive the book for a few months but I did get the full version as a pdf so I can make a start now.

With experience from playing Five Parsecs From Home I knew there’d be a lot of rolling on tables and note taking before I would flesh out results and the story so I bought myself a notebook just for the game. Then it was time to work out my warband.

The Warband

Beginnings

First I would generate my four heroes. I had a choice of a variety of races and after some thought, and looking through some of my miniature collection I settled on two humans, a duskling and a feral.

Beginnings

Miniatures wise, I’ll be treating dusklings as dwarfs and as for ferals I have a few Burrows & Badgers miniatures which I can choose from.

Next I had to choose backgrounds for each of my heroes which would provide 4 tables each to help shape them. I chose zealot and mystic for the humans, the mystic being a spell caster. For the duskling and the feral I had to choose the outsider background.

I then selected weapons and armour from a limited list, which I did with the miniatures I had in mind to use.

Then I rolled to see what two followers I would get, an outcast drifter and a studious apprentice, which sent me back to my miniatures collection to choose two more suitable models.

Finally I had to select one hero to be my avatar, my representation on the tabletop, around which the warband was based, for that I chose the mystic as I fancied myself as an all knowing wizard. 

The Warband The Warband

From left to right:

Outcast Drifter (follower), an Otherworld Miniatures thief,

Duskling with bow, a Midlam Miniatures dwarf ranger,

Human mystic (avatar), a Hasslefree Miniatures wizard, 

Human zealot with sword, a Hasslefree Miniatures barbarian,

Feral with longbow, an Oathsworn Bunny with bow,

Studious apprentice (follower), a North Star wizard’s apprentice.

What’s Next

As well as painting the six models for the warband, I need to fill out the warband roster sheet and campaign sheet from the notes I’ve made in my book, as well as come up with names for each of our members (and maybe even backgrounds).

There’s a small practice scenario to play which provides no risk and isn’t part of the campaign but helps with learning the rules and the game involves creating  a map of the land where my adventures will take place, which I’ve already been experimenting with.

Fun times ahead.

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