Saturday, 30 April 2016

Kickstarter Watch – Blood and Plunder

Pirates – what’s not to like (when we’re talking miniatures and games, that is)?
The Blood & Plunder kickstarter is all about classical pirates doing their thing in the Caribbean. You will see British buccaneers and militia battling Spanish Guarda Costa and militia on ships and/or land. Yes, on ships, which there are several variants available.
The rules for this 17th century, 28mm skirmish (13 to 50 models) game cover both land, naval and amphibious combat and that is what makes it so interesting, in my opinion. You can have your ships shoot it out and then have some boarding action.
I’m very tempted, but… another period…. Aaargh!
Anyway, I already have a pirate ship, so I’m halfway there already…
Check it out if pirates are your thing. (You know they are...)

There are a lot of intereresting kickstarters out there at the moment. Expect to find out about some of them here.

All photos and illustrations © Firelock Games and used with permission.

Friday, 29 April 2016

Pulp Alley – Perilous Island Campaign – Another Blood Sacrifice or A Picnic with Great Gonga’s Little Sister

We are nearing the final adventures of the campaign, but before we enter the Forbidden City there was another call for heroes, as a princess had been abducted. As we feared, another evil witch-doctor had her in his clutches and intended to sacrifice her to Great Gonga’s Little Sister.
Monsignore still shudders at the memories of the fight with the Great Gonga, but a little sister couldn’t possibly be as bad, and he takes courage in his faith and sallies forth. To glory and the eternal friendship of the local savages!
Crap, the CSSS is not alone in their want for glory. 
Let the fight begin. 
The heroes are here again, the CSSS - Corpo di Spedizione Santa Sede.
This time we have support from another soldier (a level 1 shooter)  that felt he needed action and Soura Maledetta, a very upset close combat speialist (counts as a level 2 Animal) that seeks converts...
Die Unabhängige Phrenologen
The Belgian League
We were fortunate as the Cult of Ra was off on another part of the island, probably sacrificing virgins or some such nonsense.
Plot points: The Princess/Sacrifice in the middle, Witch Doctor to the left of her (the warriors around him signifies the perilous area around him) and three ordinary plot points.
The CSSS enters from the closest edge, Belgians from the back edge and Phrenlogist from the right.
The heroes advances rather cautiously and fires of a burst on a couple of bunched-up Phrenologists. Unfortunately none of them falls, just yet.
But as one of them does as soon as he activates. Herr Doctor takes a shot at one of my soldiers and hits him twice.
That should be no problems, as I wear the Skull Ring (a reward I got from David Phipps & Daughter/Pulp Alley for posting 10+ AARs last year)  to help me in  situations like these. I just have to roll 4+ on both dice.
And I roll this!
How is that possible when I'm equipped like this.
Dave - can you explain this?  I want a refund!
The result - a fallen hero (I blame that Skull Ring. I cannot possibly be working the way it should.)
A new turn and the Belgians advances and picks up a plot point.
Good, we're about to see some Belgian vs Phrenologist action here, it seems. Great to have them occupied with something not CSSS. 
Monsignore also gets a plot point while Soura Innocenza and a soldier advances towards the captured princess while the rest of the gang engages the nazis.
The Phrenologist also picks up a plot point, and we have one each.
A new turn and my fallen soldier gets up and into the fight again.
The Prenologists starts the turn by felling Soura Maledetta
Followed by Sister Sigrid shooting the poor soldier to pieces. The two remaining heroes legs it towards Monsignore.
Unfortunately both fallen heroes are gone for good when we check for survival at end-turn
A new turn sees Soura and a soldier by the princess but the soldier, used as a human shield to protect Soura, falls to gun-fire from the Belgian side.
The Witch Doctor starts to scream and chant and the soldiers around him looks very menacing. We all stay out of the way, as madmen are just a tad annoying.
Now, this is not fair. Two against one. Anyway, Soura is an excellent fighter and holds her own. Winning the fight she retreats with the Princess that she has unbound.
Retribution comes in the form of a dubbel barrel of hot lead. Two Belgians manages to duck but a hapless ally halfway behing the obelisk isn't that lucky and takes the full blast in the chest.
More shots are fired and the pair in the middle gets some serious damage. The CSSS advances to protect Soura.
It is time to meet
Great Gonga’s Little Sister
 - 
Gongette

It's end of turn and the mad Witch Doctor screams in triumph as Gongette arrives.  She looks mighty scary for a little sister.
Thankfully she's far from my heroes.
Some wounds are removed and the man behing the obelisk stills the blood flowing from his wounds and stands up. Bad mistake that.
All hell breaks loose as Miss Mayhem attacks Soura followed by another double barrel at the Belgion leader and the poor chap behind the obelisk. He falls again and considering what will soon happen there I think he is grateful for that.
The belgians throws a well-aimed stick of dynamite at the bunched up Phrenologist. 
Gunfire into the melee and more close combat is too much for Soura who falls. The princess is now unclaimed. The Belgian leader falls to gun-fire.
Monsignore avenges Soura with a well placed shot.
It's time for Gongette and she might be a little sister, but she is no push-over, that's for sure. She starts by attacking the Belgians...
... and as they are real cry-babies they fall before her and she continues with the tasty nazis.

SIster Sigrid is really lucky and surves. She runs away, screaming.
A new turn and the fallen Belgians all decide that enough is enough. They all play dead and are out of the match.
Things are looking a bit better on my front as Soura shakes off her damage and engages Miss Mayhem again.
The remainder of the CSSS piles into the fight or try to persuade the princess to join our cause. All except the shotgun wielding Padre Scuro who rushes toward Gongette, shouting "Come on you ugly excuse for a monster, you want a piece of me?". He shows that a man of God is something to fear as he once again unloads his two barrels, this time against the monster. As a bonus he wounds Herr Doctor who is fully occupied with fighting Gongette.
Monsters and shotguns are just to much for the wounded Phrenologist and he shouts "Lets Blitzkrieg somewhere else" and runs away as the coward he is. Sister Sigrid, crying like a baby, follow her leaders shameful example.
Soura falls again in the fight around the princess, while Padre Scuro have second thoughts about the health aspects of attacking the little sister of the monster that nearly obliterated the CSSS just a few weeks ago. Gongette slowly turns her tentacles towards the tasty treat and attacks.
Padre Scuro not only survives the attacks of the monstrosity, he is also able to retreat from the fight. Surely Divine Intervention (and it's about time!)
With that the game is over and everyone legs it. Everyone except the princess...
Another fun game of Pulp Alley and we had no losses to the big monster. That's a first...
Every league got one Plot Point, very fair that, and next adventure will take us to, and hopfully through, the gates of the Forbidden City.

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

More Frostgrave - AAR

The setup with the nine treasures circled in red (click on picture for a larger view). 
Thomas, my son David and I had another game of Frostgrave last week. We actually had one the week before but that game lacked sufficient cover and became an archer and crossbow extravaganza where they, and the spell Bone Dart, totally dominated the game. We learned our lesson and though we filled this table with buildings and stuff (some of mine and the rest from the vaults of Little Wars gaming club (you should really join if you live close by)) there were still too many killing lanes (We'll skip the roads next game). Well, we’re slowly getting there and I’m slowly buying and building more and more terrain J
Thomas' Summoner with his gang
My trusted Witch leads half the warband while the Apprentice leads the rest

Here comes David's Necromancer and his warband. Shudder.
The game starts with the Summoner succeding with a Summon Demon spell. Sort of informative - I'm up against a Necromancer and a Demon-lover...
My Witch and the gang close to her moves up. We have two treasures in our sights. The Witch tries to cast Raise Zombie but fails. (I should really  have tried Telekinesis here, though.)
The Necromancer advances into the ruins
My Apprentice cast Telekinesis, moving one treasure closer to my side. An excellent spell!
Meanwhile the Summoner and his warband advances cautiously.
Here's my warband, already in contact with three treasures
The Summoner warband advances further. Most of the soldiers seem to concentrate on the Necromancer and his gang. Good for me! They have a Construct made by the Summoner in contact with a treasure on the ziggurat.
The Necromancer and gang spread out and into positions. 
One of my heroic thieves grabs a treasure while the witch fails with a Telekinesis spell.
The Necromancer has at last got some momentum. 
The Summoner cast Leap on a soldier who leaps up to the top of the tower and the tresure there. Smart move! The Apprentice casts a Fog spell and effectively stops all missile fire in that part of the gaming area.
This is starting to be really fun as we set off a wider variety of spells compared with the earlier matches.
The Necromancer's apprentice starts climbing up the ruins, to get to a vantage point later on.
The Summoner warband advances on the flank and also secures one of the treasures.
Two of my soldiers retreats laden with treasure.
Meanwhile the Demon attacks my soldier defending the thief that has secured my fourth treasure.
While they are fighting my Wolf animal companion sneaks up behind the Demon and attacks it from behind.
My Apprentice casts Telekinesis on another treasure, moving it closer to one of my Rangers, but before she can snatch it the Necromancer fires off a Bone Dart that fells her. 
The Fog dissipates which is unfortunate for the Summoner's gang, but all missile fire on the soldier with treasure on top of the rock misses.
One of the Necromancer's soldiers reaches the treasure on top of the ruin while the Necromancer himself looks menacing.

A Leap spell on the thief and he makes his escape into the shadow of a building. My fourth treasure is safe.
The archer tries to hit the Necromancer but misses.
The Necromancer's apprentice is now in position while some other gang-members are advancing on my positions.
The lone Necromancer zombie is attacked by soldiers from the Summoner gang, but it holds the flank for now.
Climbing down the tower is slow going. The dice show how far he has climbed. A long way to go still.
Another Fog spell hides the soldier retreating with one treasure.
The zombie finally falls...
...and this flank of the Necromancer suddenly looks rather shaky as their lightly clad ranger is attacked by a soldier.
The fight between my soldier and wolf vs the Demon isn't going great as my soldier is wounded and pushed back.
A great opportunity to snatch that forgotten treasure, I think, and moves that hapless soldier towards the middle of the board. When that is done I remember that the reason she was pushed back was because she was wounded in the fight with the Demon. She's got just one wound left...
The rest of my treasure-laden soldiers are nearly off the board.
Now something annoying happens when the Necromancers Apprentice, from her vantage point on top of the ruins, casts a Bones of the Earth spell and from the ground in front of my Witch, that has moved to be close to the apprentice, shoots a skeletal hand that holds her in a strong grip. She cannot move from the spot unless she destroys the hand or uses magical movement. The skeleton will symbolise the skeletal hand (Thomas will make a couple of suitable hands to use in our future games)
A have this idea of my apprentice helping out in the fight against the hand. It's not an altogether bad idea, as a lot of Necromancer soldiers are fast approaching. The attack on the hand misses, by the way.
And there goes the wolf. Ah, well, I can always summon another for the next game.
A fleeing soldier with one hit point left, a Witch and her Apprentice locked in combat with a fricking skeleton hand, an archer trying to hold back the horde of Necromancer soldiers and a lone thief frantically trying to escape. Copuld it be worse?
YES!
You might not have noticed it, but you have not seen any battles between Necromancers and Summoners for a while. You might ask yourself why.
The answer is that the scumbags have a cease-fire while they take care of me as I have far to many treasures already (in their oppinion) and they don't think I should have any more.
The opposition advances on my Witch and Apprentice. Thing are looking grim. But it could be worse...
And it is, when the Necromancer wins initiative and casts another Bones of the Earth, this time trapping my Apprencice, too!
It's amazing that I could have raised such an evil son. You should have heard his laughter when he succeded with that spell. (Well, I'm rather pleased actually. Signs of a true gamer. Mission accomplished!)
But his laughter is cut short when both my Witch and Apprentice casts Leap on themselves, succeeds and jumps to freedom.
With that we call it a day as Thomas retreats and let David have the last treasure.
That was a great game!
It’s the first time we have used a plethora of spells to good effect and that showed how powerful your wizards can be. I think we altogether cast one offensive spell (maybe two) during the game and the rest were defensive or supporting, and it really worked well.
Great fun and there will be more games to come.