Thursday, 29 December 2011

Battle Report: The Shadow of Koles Lorr - The Rules of the Game

Right - the last post of the year, then.

One thing we need before we commence with turn one is the actual scenario rules and the deployment plan.

This is the table:

As you can see, Koles Lorr is... large.
In 3rd Edition, buildings are broken up into sections, to cater for movement and occupation. Koles Lorr is large enough to consist of three sections, as follows:

Scenery Rules:
- The rock face of the hill can’t be climbed on.
- Can fly over hill on level +10, rocks and woods on level +20 and tower on level +40.
- The rocks and the barreled defense count as hard cover.
- The woods are considered difficult terrain.
- The terrain is split in half creating two zones: orc zone and dwarf zone.
- Victory points are gained by occupying the zone of the opposite army.
- The tower has three main levels: ground level, 1st level and top level (see picture) and is made of stone.
- Dwarfs objective: capture cargo with as least 5 models.
- Dwarfs: Gain points by preventing tower from being destroyed or damaged.
- Orcs objective: eliminate Sir Loyne and Tendhe Loyne while defending the precious cargo.
- Orcs: Gain points by destroying or damaging the tower.

The 'cargo' is, of course, the cart with the curry powder.

So, with that in mind, these are the deployment areas:

Even if you are familiar with Warhammer 3rd Edition rules, you might be thinking 'what the hell is a dwarf scout? I've never heard of those?'

...and you'd be right. They are simply a unit of five skirmishers, who happened to arrive before the rest of the force. This is the advantage of narrative - we can make stuff up.

Also, given that Blue is the newest member to our little online gaming group, we felt it was the right thing to extend the first turn to him.


Sensei Milliog slowly released his breath, opening an eye to watch the steaming expulsion dissipate in the morning air. Milliog had left camp well before the sunrise in order to determine the future. This was something that Trammer used to do when the tribe was trying to work out what to do next. Now that he'd lost his head, Milliog felt that the duty of divining the tribe's next move fell onto his sloped shoulders. 

Unfortunately, Trammer had never told Milliog how this divining was done. 

After Trammer's unfortunate demise, Milliog had spent the rest of the previous evening pondering the mysterious snuff. Pondering, dear reader, is not something that the orcs excel at at the best of times, and now that his tutor had exploded, Trammer would be hard pressed to consider this the best of times. Still, in the absence of any actual thought, he certainly gave off the impression that he was deep in thought, by staring deep into the embers of the fire and scratching his buttocks from time to time. 

Indeed, so powerful was his apparent thoughtfulness that the other orcs didn't even offer him a bit of Trammer once they'd cooked him up. 

"Poor boy's mourning," one said.

"Yer, leave 'im be - pro'lly doesn't want to eat 'is mate now, does 'e?" pointed out another. 

A third orc struck the first in the face, pointing out that it was now the evening, and not the morning, so how could the poor boy be morning? He further posited that it was impossible to be any specific time of day if you were an orc, and then moved on to question the sanctity of the first orc's mother's bed. This prompted the first orc to defend his position and family, which he did so with verve, by biting deeply into the eyebrow of his accuser, whilst punching vigourously in all directions. 

It wasn't long before the rest of the orcs entered into the debate, leaving only Milliog and the cooked remains of his late mentor sitting on the sidelines: one pondering, the other smouldering. Milliog realised that he was never going to get anything done this way. He skulked off to go and investigate the mysterious snuff in the wagon. 

He realised that it would be a good idea to see the powder in action again. He secured the services of a willing goblin (by hooking his fingers in the vile creature's nostrils and leading him to the wagon) and was able to observe the effects of the snuff again. 

Although the goblin sneezed violently for what felt like quite a while, Milliog noted that it's head only exploded once he'd walloped it with a club. He repeated the experiment a few times with other goblin volunteers, noting that if he didn't hit them, then they didn't explode. They did seem a little distressed, with plenty of sneezing, tears and snot, but they seemed to be able to function more or less as before. 

He tried it twice on orcs as well (those not engaged in that evening's fireside entertainment), reasoning that the goblins didn't explode because they didn't have any brains anyway, so there was nothing to explode in the first place. As it turned out, the orcs reacted in the same fashion. He noted with interest that their heads didn't even explode when struck with the club. 

Therefore, the powder must be magical, because only magical orcs exploded. The problem was that he was the only magical orc left, which meant that he couldn't prove his theory unless he managed to get an observer. And, if his own head exploded, how was the observer going to tell him what he saw? One can't hear very well without ears, can one?

By the time he returned to the fire, the surviving orcs appeared to have come to an agreement (which had since moved from orcs and mornings to whether or not Pi was an actual number...) and were just dropping off to sleep. Finding himself unable to discuss his findings with anyone sensible, Milliog refreshed himself with some left-over Trammer. It was whilst chewing through a particularly stubborn bit of cartilage that it occurred to him that he might be able to divine the future, and possibly the purpose of the powder. After all, it had to be valuable if  a whole army had been escorting it. And it was the sort of thing Trammer would have done.

And so Milliog watched his breath evaporate in the morning light. He had spent most of the night outside of camp, staring up at the silhouette of the old tower as the day broke, no wiser for his efforts. 

Frustrated, he stood up, yawned and stretched. Just as he was about to depart the scene, he noticed a banner bobbing into view over the horizon. He waved his hand in front of his face, hoping to clear the gentle mist obscuring his view. The mist didn't clear, but Milliog was certain - he'd seen that banner before.

It was the banner of the dwarves they ambushed just the other day. The ones who were moving the snuff. 

He wasn't too clear how they came to be there, but that was a matter for another day. Right now, he needed to get back and rally the boys. Milliog evacuated the scene and loped back to camp. 

This time they'd have to make sure the dwarves stayed dead...



Battle Navigation

The Rules of the Game


Sunday, 18 December 2011

Battle Report: The Shadow of Koles Lorr - Meet the Contestants!

If you didn't know already, Dreamfish and I have already played a remote game of Warhammer.

We did that because Dreamfish lives in The Netherlands, and I live in England.

In that game, it was just the two of us, with me serving as the remote player, and Dreamfish doing all of the measurements and movements of the physical figures. Check out this post for information on how one goes about playing Warhammer by email.

But now things are different. Let us never forget that the primary purpose of this particular site is to help me find Warhammer 3rd Edition players, or at least, those that want to learn. In the few months that the blog has been running, more players of distinction and fine taste have stepped forward, meaning that we have a third member wanting to play. That means that we can play Warhammer the way it was always meant to be played... with a Games Master!

So, Dreamfish will be serving as the GM, being accountable for the figures, movements and measurements. The game will take place in his beautiful warhammer shrine, which is a room where he can leave the game undisturbed for the several weeks that will pass as we play the game. He knows the secrets of both amies, and quite possible has some secrets of his own that neither of us are aware of!

That means that I get to take on the role of one of the antagonists. It is therefore with great pleasure that I introduce to you our other antagonist:

Blue in VT!

Blue runs a blog ( which you may already be aware of, as his updates pop up regularly over in the 'My Blog List' section just next to this article.

The Players


21st Century Warhammer 3 Stats:
Won: 0
Drawn: 0
Lost: 1

Nomansland (Wiltshire), England

Gaming Experience:
Started playing D&D in the late 80's and Warhammer in the early 90's, just catching the end of 3rd edition. Progressed all through until 8th edition, before electing to return to the 3rd edition. Gaj has started selling and trading his later edition armies to build up classic 3rd edition armies.

1. Undead - target: Terror of the Lichemaster
2. Orcs & Goblins - target: Forenrond's Last Stand
3. Chaos - target: Realms of Chaos
4. High Elves - every player probably should have at least one 'good' army...

Other Interests:
eBay - grade 'A' addict. Games of all sorts. Board games, card games, drinking games, psychological games, video games...

Blue in VT

21st Century Warhammer 3 Stats:
Won: 0
Drawn: 0
Lost: 0

Vermont, USA

Gaming Experience: 
Started playing D&D in the early 80's and Warhammer in the late 80's with 3rd edition continued up through 4th when real life got in the way. Now (after 15 years since his last game) just getting back into the gaming scene. He has mostly been collecting and painting but is excited to get back into the gaming side of things now that he has found some "right" minded folks, albeit thousands of miles away.

1. Dwarfs - by far his largest and most loved Army
2. Empire - seen as allies to his dwarfs
3. Chaos Dwarfs - with many Greenskin and other chaos allies. Note - the dwarfs are still in charge!

Other interests: 
Acoustic Blues Guitar (hence the "Blue"), Camping, Fishing, Military History, and trying to catch up on his sleep - despite his children's efforts to the contrary...

As can be seen, statistically, without ever having played 3rd edition this century, Blue is still a better player than Gaj, who ends up trailing the new-comer with one loss...

Spectators will be naturally inclined to support their favoured fantasy army, but it is interesting to note that sub-texts could be inferred: Old England vs. New England? USA vs. Great Britain? Arguably, there's even an (relatively) East vs. West argument to be fought out here. Have the Dwarves forgotten the shame of losing the Colonies? Can the Orcs hammer the final nail into Imperial Grandiosity's coffin lid?

Of course, it's just a game...

You know what they say about long distance relationships...

The Dwarves

Sir Loyne's Stout Dwarves of High Regard

The Orcs

Waagh Narbis

So, let the battle commence. See you in hell Good luck, Blue!


Battle Navigation

Meet the Contestants!


Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Battle Report: The Shadow of Koles Lorr

Yep, it's that time of year again, kids. Ol' Dreamfish, myself and mystery guest soon to be revealed have cooked up another encounter of truly epic proportions, in our noble, never ending quest to promote the 3rd edition of Warhammer Fantasy Battles. Anyway, the prologue:

Prologue: The Shadow of Koles Lorr

"There's gold up there, you know," Jabbartha said. His brow furrowed as he formed his grim expression. "Gold."

Hans Ohlow shook his head. 

"It's not gold. Stop bloody calling it gold. If you just called it what it bloody well was, we wouldn't be standing here now, in the freezing wind, up to our knees in mud and shit, staring at ... well, nothing. It's not gold!" Hans thrust his hands into his pockets and stared into the distance. His companion, Jabbartha Hhut, shook his head. Of all the scouts he had ever come across, never had he met one that complained so much about being outside. 

Both dwarves stared out across the plain. 

"You know..."

Oh great. More complaining, thought Jabbartha. Keep going, mate - I've got nothing else to do either. 

"...I can't think of a single purpose for this place. Why would the gods make such a forsaken stretch?" Hans poked a tuft of grass with his boot. "It's only purpose is to be bloody wet. Wet grass, wet mud, wet air. Wet dwarves. And it's not even bloody raining."



"It's not raining yet," Jabartha said. May as well set his expectations now. 

"Doesn't matter. Even if you do find this bloody wagon, all your stupid gold" - he quoted with his fingers - "is just going to be soaked through or stuck together in one big clump. I don't know why everyone thinks it's so bloody great anyway." 

Both dwarves fell silent. 

Jabbartha cleared his throat. "Any-"

Hans cut him off. "And it's a stupid place to put a tower, too! How long's it been here?"

Jabbartha looked up at the tower. Koles Lorr. "Ages. We didn't build it, actually. It's a human build. Prob'ly why they abandoned it. Wasn't up to much."

"They probably all hanged themselves after a week with putting up with this!" Hans kicked a clump of earth. He soles squeaked in the wet as he watched the muddy clump sail into the misty air. It's depressing squelch on landing did nothing to cheer him up. 

Jabbartha was getting tired of Hans now. "Look. I don't want to be here any more than you do. Right? So do us all a favour and go check out that tower. That gold is out here somewhere, and if it was me on a night like last night, I'd have taken up in that tower too. So get out there, get the cart and the gold, and lets all of us go home, okay?"

Hans spat his disgust at the order. 

"It's not gold," he mumbled under his breath. He signalled to the other rangers to follow him. 


One Day Earlier...

"Who is this chap again?" King Pinne lowered his spectacles and looked down at the writ of office he had been presented with. 

"Sir Loyne, your majesty. He claims to be a paladin of Yasmar Nodrog," Muz Shipeez said. Muz had served in King Pinne's court for many decades now, and knew better than to infer his doubt about Sir Loynes credentials, but the fact was that he knew of all the families that needed knowing of, and the Loyne's of Gird were not a family he'd ever heard of before. 

"Is he in the book?"

"No, Your Majesty, he has arrived unexpectedly."

"No, no - not the appointment book. You know - the names book that you look at all the time?"

Muz smiled. This was good news, if the King was thinking like this already. "No, Your Majesty. Sir Loyne is in neither the Great Family Tree nor the appointment book. I did find a a match on Yasmar Nodrog, though."

The king brightened. "Brilliant. Never heard of him either. Do we have a temple for Yasmar here?"

"Not that I'm aware of, no -"

"What's he do anyway, this Yasmar Nodrog? What's his godly job?"

"He is the god of food-"

"Food? Really?"

Muz blinked at the interruption and let out a slow breath. "Yes, Your Majesty. Food. And rage, it seems."

"Food and rage?"

Muz nodded. 

The king removed his spectacles and started chewing thoughtfully on the frame. "I would have thought we would have a temple to the god of food, surely?"

"It seems that we like to keep food out of our worship, Your Majesty."

"Mmmm...well, I suppose we'd better let him in and see what he has to say for himself."

Muz nodded. He had already gathered the King's Guard to the audience chamber, just in case. He signalled to the doormen to open the doors and admit the king's visitor. 

"Oh, and Muz?" King Pinne whispered.

"Yes, Your Majesty?" Muz looked straight ahead. 

"Maybe we should have a worshipful celebration of this Yasmar Nodrog. A little food and beer. You know - show some respect?"

"All in hand, your Majesty. All in hand."

"Not sure about the rage part just yet."

Both dwarves watched as the trumpets announced the arrival of Sir Loyne. 

"Don't worry, Your Majesty, I have a feeling the rage will come soon..."


Sir Loyne was a big dwarf. Standing a head taller than any dwarf in the room, all eyes followed this giant among dwarves as a strode toward the king. His demeanour radiated confidence and his eyes - what eyes! His stare alone defeated everyone in the room as he dared the audience to challenge him. The King's Guard shuffled nervously, each hoping one of the others was more loyal to the king than themselves; more willing to die at the hands of this severe giant should things get ugly. 

A small, unfortunate dwarf tottered behind Sir Loyne, struggling with a huge banner that towered over him. The banner was too tall for the dwarven hall, resulting in the poor dwarf having to drag the banner pole along the ceiling, as close to upright as possible. 

"King Pinne!" Sir Loyne bawled, stretching his arms wide "Ty!"

King Pinne winced. He liked being called King Pinne. He hated his first name. It sounded so... common. His eyes widened in horror when he realised Sir Loyne wasn't stopping there. 

Sir Loyne stepped up the dais, gripped the dwarf king's shoulders and hefted him onto his feet, where he proceeded to crush the bewildered king into a punishing bear hug. Sir Loyne winked at Muz over the king's shoulder. King Pinne glared furiously at his guard over Sir Loyne's. 

"Ty! So good to see you! Brilliant to see how well you've done for yourself!" Sir Loyne dropped the flustered king back into his throne and waved expansively at the throne room. 

King Pinne readjusted his crown, wondering why the hell none of his guard had done anything about this ruddy lunatic just wrenching him from his throne. The way Sir Loyne had clapped him on the back was tantamount to assault, as far as his shoulder blades were concerned. He'd have to have a word with them later on. 

"Er..." he mumbled. "Yes, done alright, I suppose-"

"Alright?" Sir Loyne boomed. Before King Pinne realised what was happening, the giant dwarf reached out and grabbed the king's crown, planting it neatly on his own head. The room gasped.

"Alright, you say? You're a blessed king! This is fantastic! Bet the beer's good, eh? None of that cheap stuff for you anymore, eh?" Sir Loyne poked the startled king in the ribs and laughed. 

"Ahem!" Muz cleared his throat. 

Both dwarves looked at him. 

"His Majesty feels that guests should refrain from wearing his crown at the first visit, although he would be happy to forgive you this small oversight given the nature of your joyful meeting just now," Muz said through his forced smile. 

King Pinne nodded. "Yes, yes. His Ma... er, I... would like to get his crown back. If that's alright?"

Sir Loyne clapped both his hands on the king's shoulders as he laughed. "Of course, of course. So silly of me - you are the king and must be respected and all that. Of course!"  He presented his head to King Pinne with a grandiose bow.

The king clutched the crown with nervous hands and placed it gingerly on his head, as if it were now somehow too hot.

"Anyway, I'd love to stay and chat about old times, Ty, but we've got urgent business to attend to." Sir Loyne swivelled round and stepped of the dais before turning to look at the king again. "It turns out that I need your help. And when I say 'I', of course, I refer to Yasmar Nodrog! We have a holy commission for you!"

King Pinne blinked. Muz shivered in an effort to maintain his composure. 

"Sir Loyne, your dedication to the business of Yasmar Nodrog is both legendary and exemplary, I'm sure. Perhaps even Yasmar Nodrog would allow a humble, weary servant and his retinue time to rest and recovered before resuming the no doubt arduous duties required in his service?" Muz raised an eyebrow as he asked the question. 

Sir Loyne raised an eyebrow in return. 

"I am tireless in my service of Yasmar Nodrog." 

His tone was frigid - all his jovial warmth was drowned out by the sudden cold silence in the room. The King's Guard clutched their weapons, desperately hoping nothing would come of this. Some looked at each other, unsure of what they should do. If Muz made the crazy giant angry, he could sort it out himself, as far as they were concerned. 

He cocked his head. "But, he is the god of food. And to eat is to worship. Waddaya say, Tendhe? Bit of grub before we hit the road?"

The dwarf carrying the banner nodded eagerly. 

The mood in the room lifted as Sir Loyne's demeanor softened. 

"This is my boy, by the way," Sir Loyne said to the king. "Tendhe Loyne. Carries the banner, see? For the Loynes."

King Pinne gulped. "Uh, good to meet you." He turned to Muz and pleaded with his eyes. 

"Excellent! We've laid on a little spread for you and fifty members of your party. His Majesty would love to discuss your holy commission over a little meal and perhaps a light after dinner smoke?"

"Fifty members?" Sir Loyne repeated. "No need for that - just the two of us, now," he said, pointing at Tendhe and himself. 

"Oh?" Muz looked puzzled. "I see. Might I enquire... I mean, surely you're not travelling alone?"

"Of course not, you funny little dwarf," Sir Loyne chuckled. "We left Gird with a whole army."

"I see. I can send messenger to your camp to summon them?"

Sir Loyne snorted. "Unless your messenger can summon them from the grave, I'd imagine he'd find that task quite difficult. They're all dead, now. That's why we stopped here."

"Stopped here." Muz repeated.

"Yes. To get some more."

"More?" the king asked, his voice faint. 

"Yes, more dwarves. Mine are all dead. So I've come to get some of yours. But come, let's go to this meal you've prepared. Lots more to round, eh?"

Muz staggered as Sir Loyne clapped his hand over his shoulders, herding him towards the door. 


Things had moved quickly from there. Hans squelched behind the other rangers, shaking his head at the stupidity of the situation. Apparently, Sir Loyne and the army of Gird were accompanying a valuable cargo wagon somewhere up north when they were ambushed and annihilated by orcs. Instead of refusing the fool anything, King Pinne had allowed the paladin to assume command of the King's forces in order to chase the orcs and extract their vengeance.

Sir Loyne just wanted everything he could lay his hands on. It just so happened that as Sir Loyne gained entry into the king's armoury, he noticed a tunnel leading to the massive forge and workshop, where Big Dog, the clan's largest stone thrower, was being serviced. 

"I'm having that," he said, to no-one in particular. 

There had been protests, of course. Hans, as the lead scout, had pointed out the futility of chasing a fast orc column with warmachines in tow. It would be impossible. 

"Ah, but what if they establish a fort? What would we do then?" Sir Loyne had challenged. 

"If they've established a fort, we'd set up watch and send runners to get the warmachines, if they were needed. They are orcs, don't forget, so the word fort is relative."

Sir Loyne had looked thoughtful and Hans thought for a moment that Big Dog would stay, but that was not to be. 

"Bring it along. I can feel it in my bones - we'll need it for sure."

So now the only chance they really had to catch the orcs depended on the weather. Fortunately, the weather had been atrocious, and there was every chance that the could also have become bogged down. 

The team of rangers were waiting for him at the tower. He looked up at it and took in all of its wet, grey misery. There was nothing frightening about the tower, it just looked cold. He shivered as a gust of wind whipped around the tower base, throwing his cloak open. 

"Right boys, just like we did in the drills. On my signal, you kick the door in and step back," Hans pointed at Vitter Minsey, who nodded. He looked at Minn Spye "You go straight in and head right. I'm in right behind you, then you come in behind me and head left, with you two closing after us, okay?"

The other dwarves nodded and moved into position. Two on the right of the door, three on the left.

"Go," Hans whispered. 


"...and that," Sir Loyne paused to take a bite from the roasted turkey leg he was holding, "is when the orcs took the wagon" 

Both King Pinne and Muz sat silent for a while, letting the description of the loss to the orcs sink in. By the sounds of things, eighty dwarves had died. 

"What was in the wagon?" King Pinne asked.

"Gold dust. Just like gold dust."

King Pinne and Muz looked at each other. 

"Gold dust, you say?" the king muttered eventually, stroking his beard. 

"Eighty dwarves, you say?" Muz muttered, knotting his. 

King Pinne leaned forward now, staring Sir Loyne directly in the face. He'd had nine pints so far, and it was much easier to stand up to Sir Loyne now. Also, Sir Loyne seemed to much nicer, now. "Tell me more about this gold dust."

Sir Loyne returned his flagon to the table and wiped his beard with the back of his hand. "S'not gold dust. I said it's like gold dust."

"Yes, yes, but just as valuable, you say?"

Sir Loyne looked at the ceiling in thought. "Yes. Very valuable. Especially to Yasmar Nodrog. And the good human folk up north. Love the stuff, they do. They'll pay loads for it."

Having just taken his tenth pint, only a few words of that sentence hit home for King Pinne. Valuable. Love the stuff. Pay. Loads. 

"We need to get that gold dust."

Sir Loyne assumed a very serious expression, and nodded slowly. "Yes we do."

"If I might interrupt, Your Majesty," Muz said, turning to Sir Loyne. "You said it's like gold dust, so it evidently isn't. My lord's question is simply this: if not gold dust - what is it?" Ten pints from King Pinne's personal cellar had injected bravery beyond compare into Muz. 

Sir Loyne blinked at Muz, before bursting into raucous laughter.

"Of course, of course! You funny quaint mountain dwarves would've never heard of the stuff!"

The two other dwarves joined in the laughter. How funny and quaint they were, each realised! An eleventh pint had materialised in front of all three, which they clanked together and downed. 

"Let me tell you about gold dust, boys. Holy, blessed gold dust from the east..."


"I dunno wot it is. It ain't grain, it ain't gold an' it ain't gunpowder." Krunk dropped the bag on the floor. "Whole bleeding wagon's full of it."

Kahn Narbis looked down at the brown powder spilling from the bag. In the flickering firelight, it looked a bit like gold. He frowned. "Wot's Milliog say?"

Sensei Milliog emerged from the darkness. "Same as Krunk. Dunno." He shrugged. "I was gonna ask Trammer."

Kahn raised an eyebrow. 

"Er..." Krunk stammered. "I mean, ask you to ask Trammer. ' know..." 

"Oh right. Come to that, 'as it?"

The other two nodded apologetically. 

"I hates askin' him anything. You lot better be sure or I'm breaking something."

Krunk and Sensei Milliog eyed each other. If neither of them could work it out, then surely they were safe. Kahn would have to ask Trammer. They nodded in unison. 

"Righto. Follow me," Kahn said, grabbing the bag. The other two fell in behind him as he marched to the other side of the camp. The rest of the orcs just dropped themselves wherever, resting and sleeping in their rags and armour. Even Kahn didn't worry about tents and the like when travelling - it was only the tribe's irritable, aged shaman that bothered with tents. Kahn opened the flap and stepped in. Krunk and Sensei Milliog skulked in behind him. 

Trammar Zzole was an ancient, leathery orc, who after nearly fifty years of magic, was widely considered to be completely barking mad. Surely no orc could mess about with magic for that long and not go insane, spectators reasoned?

He sat in the middle of the tent floor, holding what appeared to be a human skull, rocking backwards and forwards and mumbling cheerfully to himself.  Every now and then, a whinnying giggle escaped his cracked lips and he rocked a little faster, before the light in his eyes died down and he settled again. 

Kahn slapped the wizened old orc's bald palate respectfully.

"Oi!" The old orc cried as he snapped out of his reverie. He looked wounded as he rubbed his head. "Wassat for?"

Kahn dropped the bag in front of the wizard. "D'ya know wot this is?"

Trammer poked the skull up against the bag, using his hands to make as if the skull was sniffing. "Waddaya reckon, Seesaw?"

The skull didn't appear to do anything. Trammer lifted it to his ear. "Say that again?"

His audience leaned in, hoping to hear some of the mystical chatter Seesaw was whispering to Trammer. The tent fell silent as all four orcs strained to hear anything. 

"Ssshh!" Trammer hissed, causing the other three to step back in shock. He positioned the skull directly in front of him and fixed it with a stern gaze. "Come now Seesaw. Don't be stubborn. Tell Uncle Trammer wot it is." He shook the skull a little before ramming it face first into the bag again. 


Krunk and Milliog both leapt in fright. Kahn stepped back slowly. 

Trammer giggled. "He sez it's a bag! See, you can put stuff in it! Like this powder. That's a great place to put powder. In the bag! Good Seesaw!" He patted the top of the skull.

"What's. In. The. Bag. Fool." Kahn growled. 

"Powder. See-"

Kahn grabbed Trammer by the neck and dragged the old wizard to his feet. "Tell me what the bloody powder is or I'll pull your eyeballs out and stuff them into Seesaw's empty sockets, you shit stain!"

Trammer's eyes widened as he considered the implications of Kahn's threat. "It's snuff," he blurted. 


"Yer. Snuff. Look, I'll show ya."

Kahn released the wizard, who already seemed to have forgotten the potential eye transplant just mentioned. Trammer grabbed a little pinch of the snuff, showing the other orcs. 

"Here, take some like this. Don' worry, it's safe."

Each orc moved forward and also took a pinch. 

"See, so now you puts it to your nose, like this." He watched carefully to make sure all the orcs had their snuff in the right position. "Then, alls you do is sniff it in, like so." 

They all watched as Trammer closed his eyes and drew in a massive breath, vacuuming the powder through his nostrils. 

The other orcs watched in fascination. First, his eyes shot open, and he coughed. Then, he breathed in as if to sneeze. but nothing came. He closed his mouth and blinked, breathing out slowly. 

Then Trammer Zzole's head exploded. 


"So it's called curry powder?" King Pinne asked. "Never heard of it. I like the sound of it, though. And you say it goes with beer?"

Sir Loyne grinned. "Aye, that it does. Well, curry goes with beer. Curry powder's crap on its own. Got to make it into the sauce, you see? Also, you can use the sauce with fried potato cubes. That's especially popular up north. I'm sure that's what this shipment would have been used for."

"Fried potato cubes?" King Pinne was very quickly realising how limited his palate was. "Never heard of that either. How come you know all about this?"

"Yasmar Nodrog, of course. He shows us the way," Sir Loyne responded, looking up and opening his hands to the heavens. "You need to establish a temple here, you see."

The dwarves fell silent, contemplating this deep philosophical truth.

"Curry powder." King Pinne mumbled, lost in thought. "Culinary gold..."

Muz nodded in agreement. "We need to get it back. For Yasmar Nodrog!" He lifted his flagon high into the air. 

"For Yasmar Nodrog!" the other two repeated, thrusting their own drinks into the air. 


Kahn, Krunk and Milliog looked at each other. All of them still held the powder in their hands. Kahn blinked as the headless corpse of Trammer slowly toppled over backwards and hit the floor. 

"I dunno," he said as he scratched his head. "Not sure I wanna put this in my nose anymore."

Krunk wiped bits of brain and snot off his face. "Yer, mebbe we sleep on it and have some more snuff tomorrow?"

Milliog nodded. "Yeah. Lets sleep on it." 

He looked down at the body as Kahn and Krunk stepped out of the tent. He heard Kahn shouting orders for someone to do something about the mess. Now that Trammer was dead, he supposed that he had just become the tribe's shaman. He dug a bit of what later turned out to be a bit of Trammer from his ear, before reaching down and picking up Seesaw. 

"Better make sure I've got another head," he said to the skull. "Just in case."


Hans had just emerged on the ramparts of the tower when he heard an explosion in the distance. He crouched behind the wet stone, ears straining for further clues. Shortly afterwards, he could make out the sound of guttural shouting. 

He signalled to Vitter, who had just emerged from the door, to come closer. He pointed on the direction of the shouting and whispered, "Orcs?"

Vitter cocked his head and listened for a while. "I think so. Really close...probably a couple of hundred yards, really."

The Loane Rangers had all gathered on the parapet now, and took in the news with excitement and trepidation. 

They'd found them. 

"Let's go get that gold, boys," Minn said. 

Hans put his head in his hands in despair. 

"It's not bloody gold..."


Battle Navigation



Saturday, 10 December 2011

Sinister Little Buggers

In my last post, I promised that I would post painted figures. I've not got as far as I would like (two out of ten), but let's fulfil the promise, lest you lose faith in me.

So. Chaos Dwarves:

I used transfers for the banner. I painted over the bits to try and take the glossy shine off them, but the camera still picked up the place where the transfers end. I have yet to varnish these chaps, so hopefully a nice matt varnish should dull that down a bit. As all bloggers say, it looks much better in real life.

Also, need to finish basing the chap on the left.

And the back, if you're interested...

I'm fairly sure that all collectors of fine warhammer wares from the 80's relate to the desire to own Chaos Dwarves. The quintessential collector's piece, the now long OOP dwarves represent everything that was good and wonderful about GW in the 80's. Quirky, deliciously twisted and evil, yet fun and cute. Even my wife thinks they're cute. She wants me to get more.

I showed her how much they cost on eBay and it turns out twenty is fine after all. That is, twenty combat dwarves,  a bazooka crew and a tenderiser. Ultimately, I want to get twenty four combat dwarves, so that I can use them in the Realm of Chaos Khorne army list, where multiples of eight are the order of the day.

Anyway, I've not abandoned the Undead I was working on, so to speak - these chaps would serve as a fantastic ally contingent for them. I'm planning to do ten of them and a bazooka team, before moving back onto some Undead stuff. Maybe some Zombies and young Mikael Jacsen next?


Just off the back of Blue's question in the comments - the banner is custom. The original dwarf is this one:

I am not aware of any command models for chaos dwarves from either the Citadel or Marauder ranges. I know there are other current manufacturers that make Chaos Dwarves, but where possible, I will try to stick to the original GW products. Looking at the available models, this chap looked like the most obvious banner bearer, so I thought I'd do a custom job on him. Let me tell you - it is nerve wracking customising old, out of production miniatures!

Basically, I clipped the trident, drilled out the hand and replaced it with a banner from the bits box. If my memory serves correctly, its one of the banner poles of an Orc special character on boar. The name escapes me now. Anyway, I used that, together some tin from a baking tray for the actual flag (a tip I believe from White Knight over at the Lead Adventure Forum).

Saturday, 3 December 2011

G(r)eek Rage!

Games Workshop! True Line of Sight is demeaning:

An innocent gamer is made to look like a fool thanks to a powerful allience of Greek Media and GW's stupid rules...

I found this little gem over at Tiny Legions whilst I was looking for something else entirely. The story appears to be that a greek journalist attended a warhammer 40k tournament, interviewed some players, and came away with opinion. The article was in greek, but fortunately, Antipope (the chap in the picture) has translated the thing into english (and passed comment in the article in general) on his blog, allowing as all to chuckle at some of the assertions coming out.

The Nazi, xenophibic, racist trope didn't really capture my attention that much, but this line did:

Painting the "armies" is a form of art on it's own accord, to which modelers dedicated hours or even days.

...hours or even days?

Try years, lady. Years.

Anyway, another decoy post to cover my OCD with my latest painting project. Next post will genuinely, honestly, really, really be a picture of something I've painted.


Monday, 28 November 2011

Turning lead into bold...

Back in the saddle. Real Life has finished punching me in the nuts and I appear to have paid whatever dues were required.

Good news - I've managed to paint a figure in this crazy November! Bad news, is that its not going to be posted tonight because I thought of something I need to do to it quickly and the OCD perfectionist in me decided that I could wait. And by 'I', I mean you.

So I thought I'd draw your attention to this instead:

...and this...

I'd have thought the chap would have thrown the postage in for free. You know - because £419 is a shit-ton of money for 3 grams of lead. Maybe it can cure cancer if you eat it. A bold price in this time of austerity and strife. If only the greeks had a few, their economy would be now stable.

I thought Terror of the Lichemaster was going to be an expensive exercise. Thank heavens I didn't pick Orc's Drift.

Sunday, 13 November 2011

A Complete History of Grom, part 4


Seems to be a busier month than most. What with people saving the planet with facial hair, and succumbing to their inner muse, it's a wonder that anyone gets anything done at all.

I'm not participating in either of these fine events, but November still caught up with me.

And when it did, it brought my old friend and yours, Real Life, with it. Real Life chastised me. He seemed concerned that I wasn't phoning or writing anymore. That I didn't want to hang out anymore. So he punched me in the nuts and told me to get my shit in order. He made me do work, and have to travel, and so forth. And he helped the cat get a bladder infection too. 'Cos he's a dick. Real Life, that is, not the cat.

Anyway, despite his best efforts, I've managed to finish painting a figure:

It's the very first Grom. That is, the pre-slotta one. This, then, brings to conclusion my complete history of Grom. Here's another shot, with all the Groms following in chronological order:

Grom the First (1st/2nd Ed)
Grom the Second (3rd Ed)
Grom the Third (4th Ed and current release)
Grom the Fourth (Custom)
Of course, if you're new to this thread, you'll note that Grom the Third comes with Grom the Fourth's chariot. I ended up making an even bigger Grom than Grom the Third,, well, you know. Just because.

Here's the boys together:

If you want to see more of the chariot, there's more in this thread.

Anyway, Real Life isn't finished with me yet and appears to want me to be his bitch for the rest of November. I'd expect this to be my only post this month. If you're lucky, I might scrape a Chaos post together for late November. Lotta bitching to do about Chaos.

Stupid Real Life.

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Terror of the Lichemaster - 8 / 17 Figures. And the book.

When I added the Terror of the Lichemaster appeal, I had five of the scenario figures. My thoughts were that if I had two of the 'hard to get' ones, I'd be in there with a chance. Fortunately, I now have three of the hard to get ones, and a few others. Also, I finally own the actual boxed set and scenario book. I didn't get the buildings, unfortunately, but we can work around that.

Also, given that the Lichemaster scenario was originally written for Warhammer 2nd edition, I had to get the rules as well. The scenario is compatible with Warhammer 3rd edition, but - old times sake and all that:

Now it must be said that this site was not originally started with Warhammer 2nd edition in mind. When this got underway, I had 3rd edition firmly in my sights, and the objective was to spread the word. But, having looked at 2nd edition, I'm happy to bring it in scope as well. Compared to its modern day equivalent, it is still significantly more advanced in terms of player maturity, requiring adults to play, and co-operate, and not get bogged down in arguments about rules. Although it was before my time, I welcome it and look forward to employing it when I've finished all the Lichemaster work (so - in 2018 sometime).

Also included in the box was the order sheet for the figures. Released from the poor copy up at The Stuff of Legends, I am now able to clearly see what some of these figures actually look like, so I have a better idea of what to look for on eBay.

And I got a little badge. I like badges.

Anyway, this is my collection of stuff on the actual order sheet:


Of course, other figures have come up on eBay, including the Ace of Spades himself, Mr Kemmler:

Sadly, I didn't have £93.65 (the current going rate for one? Statistics suggest that if you bid more than £93.65, you can bag yourself a Kemmler too...) to spend on the chap. Still, having got hold of Gimbrin Finehelm has added to my credibility as a Terror of the Lichemaster collector. Now, the only two figures I've not seen anywhere on the whole internet (for buying/trading) to date, are Hunk and Ranlac.

Anyway, I've got detailed pictures of each figure over on my appeal page, so that if you are collecting these figures, then you will have a clear idea of what the hell to look for. Working our the Fritzy was an AD&D Blink Dog took absolute ages...

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

The Oldhammer Contract

I just came across Mr Zhu's manifesto.

Let's be clear: it is a manifesto. It is the statement of intent of the Warhammer OSR and quite frankly, the succinct and concise expression of almost everything Warhammer for Adults was created to bring about for a single disgruntled gamer, except...clearer than my own wittering inability to express myself.

So, there's a contract, an image and a distant reference to the other leading OSR statement, noted over at Tales of the Maelstrom, referenced on this site here, and alluded to by another leading voice in our desperate return to the 80's.

We have a manifesto. We have a figurehead. And now we have a banner:

Gentlemen. I suggest we have a rebellion on our hands.

And so, like the waves of revolution that have flooded across the middle east, I invite you to participate in this very spontaneous, but very real opposition to this sort of thing. Not because I don't want you to play at tournaments (although your life will be better for it), but when someone else gets to tell you what army you're going to play...

All I'm saying is you don't have to do this. You can be in control of your gaming experience.

So. Sign Zhu's manifesto (well, leave a comment, at any rate). Change your life.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Marauding Chaos Knights and the Citadel of Confusion

Of all the figures I ever fantasised about owning, the Chaos Knights of the 80's were almost the highest on the list. Before this blog, I had never owned a chaos army, mainly because after 4th edition, it was never the same army.

Back to the knights: they looked thoroughly mean, without being the sinister, spiky dorks of the modern Games Workshop. And, in a world where 25mm meant 25mm - they were big. I dare say they would be almost the same size as a modern knight, but I don't know, because I don't have any.

So,  few months ago, when I saw some knights titled Marauder Chaos Knights on ebay, I thought, "Silly fool - Marauders are the more modern name of the light cavalry available to modern chaos armies. Those aren't Marauders, mate - those are Chaos Knights!"

Thoroughly self satisfied, I bought them.

No doubt you can see the trap I'd fallen into. Marauder was the name of a miniatures company, owned by Games Workshop. Everyone has heard of Marauder Dwarves. Even me. I can't tell you why I hadn't put those two facts together.

Anyway, the point is, I ended up with four Marauder Chaos Steeds (with Citadel riders, no less!)

The scale problem was immediately evident. I have no idea how the Marauder Chaos Knights (the riders) actually look on the steeds - but the citadel ones positively dwarfed the little buggers.

This is a comparison between the Marauder and Citadel steeds:

Marauder vs. Citadel Chaos Steeds
Top left and bottom right are the Marauder ones. The difference is astounding. I now know that this was mainly due to the cost of metal back in the day. The Marauder ones were obviously cheaper to produce.

But I don't care. What the hell am I supposed to do with four Chaos Shetland Ponies? So, for months, they've sat forgotten in an (eventually) outbound eBay queue.

That takes me to yesterday. Having now reached a stage gate with the Undead, I realised that I was a bit bored of painting undead.

I need to paint something else. I would love to paint my Orcs & Goblins, but that means that I won't really be able to capitalise on the painting I've already done.

But a Chaos army gets me around that. If I paint up some Chaos stuff, I can get a huge army for a small amount of painting effort, and because it's Chaos, I can do some very interesting painting if I want. And the Undead can ally with them (or even be summoned by them, I suppose).

So, following that track, I ended up looking at my figures and producing a 500,000* point Chaos army. In that list, I realised that I could use the diminutive Marauder ponies to make a unit of Thug Horse.

As far as I know, there are no models for this unit, and, given that they are (in my mind) supposed to be smaller than the Chaos Warriors that are further along the path of chaos than they are, this seemed very fitting.

Which now puts me in the place where I either need to find another Marauder Chaos Steed, or I need to find another older Citadel horse of a similar scale, to create the minimum of five that I need. And, given that, due to recent events, I suppose I'll be chasing down a Realm of Chaos Slaanesh army, I'll actually need to get two, because you need six in a Slaanesh army.

Such is the way of chaos. The despised become the loved.

So, I don't suppose you have any Thug horses Marauding as Knights, do you?

*Slight exaggeration. But it's 3rd Ed. Chaos, so you get the idea. 

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Milestone(s) Reached! Terror of the Lichemaster & minimum requirements for an Undead army

As the title says, a massive milestone has been reached. Of course, there are other blogs where people say they'll paint stuff, then just go ahead and produce a whole army.

Milestones don't mean anything to those people. The end is not a milestone.

Fortunately, dear readers, here things are a bit more sedentary. Like me, I'm sure you couldn't possibly cope with the delivery of a completely painted 80's army all in one go. Something would burst.

Anyway, the milestone. In the Warhammer Armies book for 3rd edition, an Undead army requires three things:

A Necromancer.

At least 20 Skeleton Warriors:

At least 10 Grim Reapers:

Here, then, is the milestone - 31 painted figures, covering exactly the stated requirements:

The Grim Reapers:

The other milestone here, is some progress for the Terror of the Lichemaster. If you look closely, you will see the leader of the Grim Reapers (no - not the one with the horns - the chap with the glowing sword) is none other than Krell. 

The Warriors:

The Warriors are comprised mainly of the Nightmare Legion, featuring Ennio and some of the boys. I say some, because perfectionists would say there are 24 members of the Nightmare Legion and they should all look similar to each other. I don't actually have all 24 members, and I get bored from too much repetition, so there are only 12 of them.

Don't be fooled by my clever photography - there is only one necromancer, he's just in both pictures.

So, the milestones reached are:

  1. Minimum requirements for an Undead army
  2. Krell and 29 other skeletons for the Terror of the Lichemaster
  3. Enough of the Nightmare Legion to call the unit the Nightmare Legion

Its nice to finally see some paint on these chaps. Onwards!


Friday, 7 October 2011

Realm of Chaos: Ellen Degenerate

Ellen Degenerate. One pun becomes another.

If, at this point, you don't know what the hell I'm talking about, it might be worth reading the events in the epilogue to the Battle for the Wyemm Seeyay. Go there now. Then the rest of this might make sense.

One of the most interesting events of the Battle for the Wyemm Seeyay, was the incredible incompetence Ellendee had with her magic. Basically, the poor girl failed her intelligence test three times in a row. In fact, she only managed to cast one spell once. That wasn't a planned event - quite simply, the dice rolls were just awful.

When I started looking at what I could do with that story wise, it just became more and more obvious that the sort of person that would turn to chaos would most likely be the sort of pampered, arrogant elf who thought they would save the day with their clever spells and basically only survive long enough to see their entire army annihilated before being taken captive themselves.

So the choice was easy, really.

And, given that Ellendee is somewhat infamous, I felt that I could roll up her Realm of Chaos conversions, because we have a dice log to prove the rolls, and a global audience to see her descend into madness...

What we have here, then, is the before and after case. Ellendee Generis, the level 10 elf, and Ellen Degenerate, the impossible-to-apply-a-level-to chaos champion:

M WS BS S T W I A Ld Int Cl WP Magic Points Fear Points
Ellendee Generis 5 5 4 4 3 2 7 1 9+1 10+2 10+1 10+2 10 0
Ellen Degenerate 5 6 6 6 4 5 10 4 10+2 10+2 10+1 10+2 20 4

As you can see, she suddenly became a lot more... competent. All I'm saying is that wayward gyrocopter pilots had better watch their step from now on.

Anyway, Ellendee's rise (descent?) was actually really quick. I only created her as a starting champion - I used the profile of a Level 10 Dark Elf Wizard and produced one Chaos Attribute for her, after applying the (meaningless) Chaos Gift of Slaanesh.

Let's go in order, shall we:

Reward 1 - default Gift of Slaanesh

+1 to Cl. Her Cl is already 10+1, so no more benefit to be achieved, I don't think. Perhaps Cl 10+2?

Reward 2 - Attribute 1: Chaos Lord. 

Yeah, that's right. Chaos Lord. Check this out:

So, I rolled well. She went from a frail little elven damsel to a heaving beast of chaos. Unfortunately, I then rolled for a further five Attributes. This means that she has six attributes, so if she ever rolls an 'Eye of the Gods' Reward when she gets her next reward, she's going to turn into a Chaos Spawn. She'll never make it to immortality now. Let's see how far we can go, though.

Reward 2 - Attribute 2: Long Neck

Great. Now she can see over fences. That's a problem she has all the time...

Reward 2 - Attribute 3: Bestial Face

That's the stuff! Chaos coming out in all it's glory. Is it a lion? Or a bear?

No. It's a goat. Beware, enemies of chaos, lest she ram* you to death!

Reward 2 - Attribute 4: Zoological Mutation

Fortunately, Chaos asserts it's true qualities, as we see the opportunity for a truly frightening and powerful mutation come through!

So I roll the dice...and her mouth is affected! That great, evil maw that... goats have. Maybe lion now?

Nah. She gets the mouth of a Rabbit. Grrr! Or whatever sounds rabbits make.

Reward 2 - Attribute 5: Limb Transferance

Okay, so up until now, she was still pretty badass. Even with a rabbit's mouth. You can get a helmet to cover that up. But now she was running the risk of quite an embarrassing deformity. More embarrassing than the long neck, even.

So wouldn't you know it, her bizarre rabbit's mouth moves around to her...


Which is always useful. Now she has to lie on the floor staring at the sky in order to eat. She can't even use her long neck to shout abuse at her neighbours over the fence anymore. Still - could have been worse. I decided, for longer term narrative, to have the mouth at the base of her neck, which makes it a bit more sinister and possibly a little more practical as well.

Reward 2 - Attribute 6: Plague Bearer

Don't get excited, it's not what I thought it was either. She is sick, though:

She's not a follower of Nurgle, so let's see what she gets:

The Shakes! So, the first really negative attribute - she loses some weapon skill and an attack. She can live with that.

But that's not all, folks. Being a Chaos Lord, she got two extra rolls on the Chaos Followers table, meaning she could already start with a small army to do her bidding. All together, this gave me three rolls. Having rolled all my dice, I got...

...a Chaos Goblin. One.

I guess she couldn't shout very loud what with her mouth on her back and all. They wanted to come, they just couldn't hear her.

I'm sure you'll be pleased to know that he's a very nice goblin, though.

Still, Ellen got three other nice things, being a Chaos Lord and all...

1. Chaos Armour (Yes!)
2. Daemon Weapon (Yes!!)
3. Extra Magic Level (Yes!!!)

The armour is pretty straight forward - she gets heavy armour and can still cast spells.

The weapon contains a Daemonette. So it doesn't have amazingly scary properties, although it doesn't allow armour saves and will kill anything with just one wound. Also, she gets +3 to hit. Like I said, not amazingly scary.

It has 37 strength points. Basically, each time the blade kills something, it absorbs a third of the victim's strength as strength points. Once it reaches 37, it is sated and doesn't have any further effect until the next battle.

And finally, the dear girl learned some new spells. When you become a Realms of Chaos Chaos Champion, and you are a wizard, you automatically get the spells of the god the champion follows. In Ellen's case, her spells now look like this (of course, you didn't know what spells she had before, because she never bloody cast any of them besides fireball...):

Level 1:

  1. Slaanesh: Acquiescence
  2. Battle Magic: Flight
  3. Battle Magic: Dispirit
  4. Battle Magic: Wind Blast
  5. Battle Magic: Fireball
  6. Elemental: Hand of Fire

Level 2:

  1. Slaanesh: Pavane of Slaanesh
  2. Elemental: Wind of Magic
  3. Daemonic: Summon Lesser Daemons

So, there we have it. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Ellen Degenerate, Champion of Slaanesh.


*Actually, I know nothing about goats. For all I know, there are incredibly dangerous feral mountain goats, who carefully stalk their prey and then ram them off difficult mountain passes or something. Their freaky little eyes are quite disturbing, I suppose.