Blog discription

What will you find here? Ramblings from an aging gamer-miniature painter. When I first started out in this hobby computers were in their infancy and finding other gamers could only be done by going to conventions or as in my case bumping into somebody who happened to see me reading "Panzer Leader" on the school bus. Look how far we have come! The internet has allowed our small community to be able to connect on a level I never dreamed of when I was but a small lad. What I do hope you will find here is something interesting from one wargamer/miniature painter to another. I paint miniatures somewhat decently, so I will be posting some pictures of my work, and perhaps a review or two of games and/or miniatures. Most of all this is just about having fun and anything I post here is meant to be for that reason.

Friday, October 31, 2014

The Moors march north in Spain!

My very good friend Skip is painting a Moorish Army (and much quicker than I am painting Franks I might add) to battle my Franks toward the end of this Fall. I look forward to giving him a good thumping, but somehow I always seem to be the one thumped when I make these statements. Any ways I really like the photo he sent me and could not help myself by sharing it with you the reader. Like all of us painters you can see his painting table in disarray in the background with various tools etc., but the troops stand out magnificently in the foreground. Well done Skip!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Frank Warlord rides forth!

So I have this pile of riders I need to paint up for my completed horses, and instead of working on all nine I could not help myself on just going all the way with my Warlord figure. It was like he cried out to me, "bring me to my mighty steed!". So I did, and here are a few pictures.

[remember to left mouse click on the photo to see a larger view, once you left click on them to see full size image then right mouse click on photo and select view image]

Only eight more to go, sigh:(

Friday, October 24, 2014

Frank Cavalry, horses completed

I finished my nine Frankish horses I've been working on recently. I don't think they came out to bad, and was pleased with my effort. I probably could have blended my shades better etc. But I said to myself I want to game not put them in a showcase (well sort of;)).

I am now working on the riders and almost have my Warlord completed and will post a picture of rider and horse in a few days. In the meantime I hope you enjoy the pictures of my work.

[As always by left clicking on the images you can see a larger view]

First group of three with the white horse being the mount for my Warlord.
Second group of three...
and the last group...

As always thanks for looking.


Monday, October 13, 2014

The Gauntlet Thrown down!

Well I got a chance last Thursday to get in another game of Saga in and the chosen scenario this time was “The Challenge”. This is an interesting scenario and probably one I’ve had the most fun with so far. Your Warlord starts out the game with 12 wounds, instead of the usual two hits to bring him down, with the normal Warlord rules still applying.

My adversary was my usual opponent who of course brought his only army the Vikings (which through a lot of ribbing he has slowly started to actually finish painting), versus my Anglo Danes (which are COMPLETELY painted by the way, hint, hint to my opponent).   

I’ve really learned to hate the Vikings. I feel they are the Anglo Danes kryptonite. With the Viking battle board aligned for mostly offensive bonuses, the Anglo Dane does not really have anything to beef up their dice (offensive or defensive), theirs has more to do with fatigue etc. So it is my opinion that the Anglo Danes really have to think about how to best employ their troops with maximum affect toward this end. The other thing I really hate about the Vikings is those damn Berserkers. I’ve tried shooting them, but then he uses that stupid ability (well not to him) to force a unit taking an action to shoot and force it to become a move instead. Well I am learning and thought I had the perfect battle plan until I actually played it out. The Story below:

Order of Battle:

Anglo Dane 
1 Warlord (2 handed Axe)
4 Huscarl (2 handed Axe)
4 Huscarl (2 handed Axe)
4 Huscarl (2 handed Axe)
8 Warriors
8 Warriors
4 Levy (Bow)
4 Levy (Bow)
4 Levy (Bow)

1 Warlord
4 Berserker's
4 Huscarl
4 Huscarl
8 Warriors
8 Warriors
8 Warriors

At start setup.  (remember to left click on image to see larger view and if you want to see full size view, right click on opened image and select view image to see full size).
Based on some hints from Studio Tomahawk forum I decided to form my Levy into fatigue bombs. If the Vikings where going to force me to move then I was more than happy to do this. I wouldn't get a whole lot of dice with them but the idea was to exhaust his units. Then follow up with a nice fresh Huscarl unit to really bite into them. Well that was the plan anyways. 

His Warlord started first on the board, and then we alternated setting up units (I won the roll) and he finished setting up first so he got the first move. Of course he loaded up his battle board to try and smack my Warlord with maximum affect but I was able to hold on. I then brought up a Warrior unit to support my Warlord and smacked into him. This was my first mistake. I should have focused on bringing up my whole army to be able to use right away and get a jump on him. Here is the situation at the end of a complete turn one.
 So far so good. My plan seemed to be working out, or so I thought, and I had one exhausted Warlord sitting in front of me waiting to be crushed. He wouldn't be able to move, would only get half of his attack dice, and I would be able to capitalize on the fatigue thing using his fatigue, yet still able to apply more fatigue later in the combat. Then all hell broke lose.

He used a double move to bring up those accursed Berserkers and slammed into my Warlord. Of course he used Heimdal and Ullr to gain 3 dice and reroll all misses, and this caused 17 hits (Yikes!!!). In return I only needed 2 or better to hit him back and rolled three ones out of five dice and then he saved one of them. I was ready to just spit! Right away I thought the game was over, except now it was time for a little magic save rolling from me. I rolled nine saves and that left me with 8 to deal with. I used four warriors, my one freebie, and only had to add 3 more wounds to my Warlord which now stood at 9 total. Very lucky indeed, as it could have been much worse. At the same time he used the rest of his dice to bring up more units to support his Warlord and during my turn I thought the better part of desecration was in order and retreated. I was able to do this because of line of sight and distance now between his Warlord and mine. Also I was cursed not to roll a single helmet (the Anglo Dane version of a 6) between turn two through turn 5. So I used my crappy roll to try and bring more troops up. The end of a complete turn two below:
The Vikings used turn 3 to bring up more troops and reorganize their lines. He rested his Warlord to bring him down to 3 fatigue and then used Njord to get rid of another and help other units lose one within M of him. So I say to myself I will give him a bloody nose now, and rolled my Saga dice.

Ugh, it was not to be. I tried to salvage something out of my crappy roll and used Noble Lineage to change one of my dice to a helmet. As he had brought up a four man Huscarl within range of one of my Levy and it's supporting Huscarl unit, I needed this helmet to be able to select Lords of Battle (the key to the Levy being a fatigue bomb). Selecting Lords of Battle, as well as Unforgiving I charged straight into his Huscarl with my Levy. This would guarantee 4 fatigue at the end of the combat and with the Huscarl smacking into him next (if I didn't take him out) they would end up with five fatigue. The Levy where successful in causing 4 hits which he promptly saved 3 of them. In return he wiped them out but now exhausted I rolled in with my Huscarl. As I see it now, you determine attack dice and defense dice first and then apply your abilities and fatigue, so he would have been exhausted even had I used his fatigue to lower his armor and raise mine. In the end I wiped him out (so it didn't really matter) and he caused one causality to me. I used my other dice to rearrange my line into attack positions. End of a complete turn 3 below:
Turn 4 started out with the Vikings now counter attacking my exposed Huscarl unit which he had no trouble in taking out with his Warriors by using his awesome battle board abilities and my now empty battle board. He wiped out my Huscarl unit but not before I took out 4 warriors in return. At this point Mark had to leave for work and he offered to continue the game the following day which I agreed to as after rolling my turn four saga dice I was shaking my head in disbelief once more and just moved all my troops back out of range of a one turn move from his. 

The next morning Mark showed up bright eyed and bushy tailed, while I was unable to sleep at all, so to say the least I was a bit groggy. Mark began the morning rolling fantastic with his Saga dice and used a Huscarl unit to make a two activation move into my Warriors stationed next to my Warlord. Of course he used his usual tricks in Frigg (to remove a fatigue), Heimadal (add three dice), and Ullr (to reroll misses), I had a fantastic save throw and only lost four figures, but so did he, and he lost only one huscarl.

My disgust continued with the continuation of poor Saga dice rolling and not one helmet (a 6) was produced. So I used my portion to side by side with what was left of my Warriors and Warlord into his over zealous (or was it genius to draw me out?) move with his Huscarl, and wiped him out but he decided to throw all his dice against my Warriors and wiped them out. I probably should not have made this move in retrospect as it left my Warlord unsupported and exposed. Though at this point I was disgusted and just wanted to hit something (not Mark, just cause some more causalities to him;)).
 Needless to say turn 6 started with the Vikings rolling well with Saga dice again, and he used all the tricks and those damn Berserkers to do a double move into my Warlord to finish the game by taking the brave soul down all alone and forgotten as his troops fled from the field in panic and disarray.

In the end Mark played a good game, and my play could have been better. Had I played a little better I might have succeeded in drawing this out the full seven turns and made it a point count game. The 4 man levy group worked out great, and my plan was sound, but one can't count on Saga dice only.

The scenario was fun and exciting. I also believe it to be a more balanced one then some of the others. So once again thanks for reading my AAR and may your Saga dice be blessed!