Wednesday, 13 March 2013

WHFB3 Battle Report #2. The Well of Madness. Part Five.

We return to the Well of Madness for the final time, Saul Feyblade has just charged a mob of brutal Orcs in a desperate attempt to buy time for his friend, Fingers Wilde, to lead the last men of Cleggs Ham to victory.

As Saul lays about him with punches and kicks the melee close in around him, he is unable to swing his sword properly and distressingly one of the rabid Orcs bites down hard on Saul's leg, wounding him. Fortunately Saul is forged in battle and his resolve never wavers for a second.


Toin plants his feet firmly and offers up a prayer to his ancestors as the Red Hand, a herd of cacophonous Beastmen, charge at him bloodthirstily.


The Minotaurs' long, ground-eating strides enable them to crash into the flank of the 2nd Militia, extinguishing hope just as it seemed to be flaring anew.


Having let his minions do all the fighting, and dying, so far Ragnir positions himself for a climactic duel with the wounded Saul.


Though casualties start to mount the 2nd Militia are still in the fight! Perhaps the Minotaurs have sated their hunger on the unfortunate men of the 1st Militia and are beginning to tire. Fingers bags himself another Orc.


Luck is not with Saul however, he finally kills one of his Orc foes only to take a second wound in return from a wild, flailing attack. With the gloating Ragnir about to join the fight surely Saul will be the first adventurer to perish in the Blackwold?


Ragnir the Fated pushes through his minions to face Saul. "I come for thee, mortal" rasps the Champion of Chaos.


The 2nd Militia are being slaughtered now, yet still they refuse to turn tail and run as their comrades did.


"I will not die at your hand, monster. Nor this day!" Saul finds a second wind and butchers three Orcs in a mighty sweep of his sword and parries every blow Ragnir rains on him.


Ragnir is hurled back by Saul's ferocity and the Hunters quail before his wrath, fleeing toward their camp.


This panics the Red Hand who are overcome with doubt and flee from Toin, who gratefully hacks down several in the process.


Saul and Toin are finally able to corner the depraved Ragnir, though badly wounded Saul hesitates not as he pursues his foe. Ragnir halves his attacks between the two hoping to slay them both quickly...


...though in his arrogance he only scores a single wound against Toin and is instead slain in return! The cry goes up amongst his troops, "Ragnir is dead, the master is no more!".


This panics the Blackshields who were supposed to guard Ragnir. They rout from the field along with the Red Hand and Grunk's Hunters. Only the Minotaurs remain, too far gone in their battle-lust to notice what is happening elsewhere.


The battle is over!


We decided to call our epic struggle a draw. No doubt Ragnir's Raiders could have rallied and carried the day, even without Ragnir himself, but the narrative of Saul's awe-inspiring heroics and the glorious stand of the 2nd Militia alongside Fingers deserved a little GM intervention, and lo, night fell upon the Well of Madness. Before turning their backs on the field of battle the people of Cleggs Ham gathered with their shovels and picks, not to bury the dead for they were too many, but to fill in the accursed well so that they might be safe from Chaos forever. The story of our heroes will continue.

As night fell and the sounds of the retreating armies faded, leaving only the screams and moans of the dying, the Ihmissusi loped forward from the treeline and surveyed the field of battle in the moonlight. He would feast well tonight, no need to hunt, but he would never be satisfied until the four strangers he had seen head toward the village were in his belly. For his hunger was not for meat alone, the Ihmissusi was no mere beast, he hungered for revenge!


Thanks for stopping by!

11 comments:

  1. Very good I thought all was lost for our adventurers. Just shows you have to stick in there.

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  2. Thanks! Yes, for sure. It never looked good for the poor heroes. Even after the death of Ragnir and a string of failed characteristic checks amongst the evil units things still looked precarious and the good guys were 'saved by the bell' so to speak.

    Seeing as they had rolled such lucky random stats at level 5 in the previous game I promoted them to higher levels so that they paid more points for themselves and that gave a truer cost reflection of their abilities, but being together in one place enabled the Raiders to thump the ordinary human units hard elsewhere.

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  3. Are you running the costs straight out the orange book or the revised costs from WHA? You may find your characters a little cheaper after the revision.

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    1. I did get the points from the main rules actually, it may be that there was a slight imbalance for that reason alone, though I had both books in front of me as I put the scenario together I didn't take any great pains to ensure an exact balance truth be told. I, and everyone I know, have committed some pretty awful army list sins in the past and I have reverted to being an army list hippy in a typical 'recent convert' fashion. All part of the learning curve!

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    2. army list hippy - love it :-)

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  4. Sure, it just sounded as though you had gone for a clear points match up whereas actually you weren't. Points for a guide is always fun.

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  5. The points system is great for the GM and I would recommend making use of them, but I was short on prep time and wanted a fun scenario rather than a perfectly balanced and tested one. Eventually I will be able to judge things 'by eye' a lot better. I did use points but I just kept a quick tally in my head as I organised the game. When I mentioned the points in the post I was thinking "I have sunk a lot of points into the heroes and forced them to deploy as far away from the most powerful enemy units as possible. D'oh!"

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  6. Ahh but that makes it the players fault for not consolidating back towards the heroes more. Of course that may have made no sense to the story, a true oldhammerer in certain circumstances sacrifices tactical gain for story do they not?

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    1. Quite right!

      And a stirring story it was too. Some great brinkmanship by the hroes.

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    2. My initial intention was to GM the Mayor and his forces until the Heroes joined units and took control, but in true 'best laid plans' style the hero player raced them off towards the weak looking Darksouls and expected control of the army anyway. I silently acquiesced rather than spoil his idea of a good game(If you are reading this O, I forgive you!). To be fair he did then game the heroes and the Mayor as separate entities with their own motivations, so it turned out better than I planned.

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