Category Archives: Battle report

Rangers of Shadow Deep: The Bridge Guards

Dralthar the Ranger got the order to proceed to the beacon tower of Tor Varden to determine why contact was lost. He gathered his companions and headed out. The first task was to get past a river bridge guarded by orks.

The weather was overcast. Dralthar hoped to use the rocky approach to get near unseen, draw off and eliminate a guard or two, then get to the other side. A camp on the far side of the river promised to contain hints about the tower, and possibly treasure.

The approach

Just when they were ready to spring the trap, Albert the Conjurer tripped and fell into a pit trap. He only suffered a cut arm from his bottles breaking, but it was enough to raise the alarm. The orks swarmed Dralthar’s band.

Zero the Warhound leapt into action, pulling one ork away while Laura the Barbarian ran to tackle another. Faithful Zero was swiftly cut in two.

Stealth has failed

The scrum continued, with heavy losses on both sides. Albert went down to a lucky crossbow shot through the rocks. Laura was overwhelmed. Dralthar let loose with a fireball, but it wasn’t enough and even Shivertusk was incapacitated.

That left Dralthar alone to continue the fight. His bowstring sang as he eliminated the one ork that could see him, then ran behind an outcropping. The remaining orks organized a search.

Dralthar hides and waits for his moment

Heavy rain began to fall, hindering the search parties. Dralthar saw his opening and ran for the bridge. But it was too much, and the orks caught up with him.

Dralthar holds out on the bridge

Just when all appeared lost, a figure emerged from the mist. Jeddak, the quartermaster from Tor Varden, had survived whatever befell the tower and made it to the bridge. He rummaged through the ork’s campsite, finding the keys to the tower, then joined the fight on the bridge.

An epic battle ensued. There was a moment when Dralthar had the chance to withdraw towards the tower, leaving Jeddak to cover. But Dralthar couldn’t leave the warrior behind. It was an ill choice, as the fight turned against them immediately after. Evading a killing blow, Dralthar pulled the wounded Jeddak into the cold blackness of the river, ending the fight at the crossing.

Even with Jeddak’s help, it isn’t enough

Dralthar awoke on shore downstream, away from the crossing, with still lying beside him. They quickly linked up with the surviving companions. Albert was able use his magic to heal Laura, Jeddak, and Dralthar. Shivertusk’s wounds would take time to fully heal.

The battle at the bridge may not have gone well, but they did eliminate some of their foe. Perhaps more importantly, they had recoverer the keys to the tower, along with a new companion familiar with the area. Dralthar and his companions continued towards Tor Varden.

Fallout: Into the Wasteland Game One

Ever since the release of Into the Wasteland, the solo/coop focused expansion for Fallout Wasteland Warfare, I’ve wanted to give it a go. Finally I made the time today for the first game in the included mini campaign.

Initial deployment, including a grazing brahmin

The game is played on a small number of 1’x1′ squares, with a layout depending on the scenario. For the first game, it’s a row of three. The small game is easy to fit on the dining table, and is a perfect fit for the now discontinued Secret Weapon Tablescape tiles.

I played as the Survivors, with a heroic Sole Survivor, Dogmeat Guard, Sturges (for some random free weapon mods), and a Settler to round things out. The campaign starts with just the basic equipment from the AI card.

I ran into mole rats and radroaches. The radroaches skittered around behind me, until it suddenly leap into my back and got squashed. The mole rats were in the front, and jumped on the overextended Dogmeat. It took a few turns, but eventually Dogmeat bit his way through while the humans picked up the loot. There was also a brahmin grazing in the background that kept to itself.

The game took a while to set up, especially since it’s been many months since I’ve played Fallout. I didn’t print the natural behavior AI cards, which was probably a mistake. I really wish I could buy a card pack, either mass production or made to order like Wargame Vault. I may get a set printed.

For game two, I have a bunch of new equipment I managed to find on the battlefield. And maybe I’ll have more creatures to destroy.

Malifaux: Gremlin Zoraida vs Sonnia

Last week I was able to get a game in with Alfonso, a local player that I’ve chatted with a few times, but had never played with.  I decided to take my new ToMB Gremlins.  Alfonso took Guild.

  • Deployment: Standard
  • Strategy: Reckoning
  • Schemes: A Line in the Sand, Vendetta, Bodyguard, Protect Territory, Frame for Murder
  • My crew:
    • Zoraida with Crystal Ball and Hex Bag
    • Francois LaCroix with Dirty Cheater and Hide in the Mud
    • Raphael LaCroix
    • Rami LaCroix with Dirty Cheater
    • Pere Ravage
    • Silurid (via Entrall)
    • Nurse (via Enthrall)
  • Alfonso’s crew:
    • Sonnia Criid with Cherufe’s Imprint, Reincarnation, and The Mask
    • Samael Hopkins with Witch Hunt
    • Guardian
    • 3x Witchling Stalkers
    • Austringer
    • Death Marshall

We both declared Protect Territory.  I took Frame for Murder on the Silurid, under the theory that he’d get killed in an attempt to deny Protect Territory, but I could Reckless-run somebody up to occupy the markers as needed.

Turn one, Zoraida summoned the Voodoo Doll, who hemmed Pere Ravage, then Interacted with the Doll to move Ravage forward.  The Nurse jammed the Doll full up Uppers, so Ravage could shoot all the way across the board.  Rami used Reckless to Focus, shoot and completely erase a Witchling Stalker, then take a swig from his Flask to heal back up.  Raphael, the Silurid, and Francois moved up to get into more interesting positions.  The Death Marshall tried to Pine Box Ravage, but failed.  Sonnia, noticing how brutal Rami could be, put up her Flame Wall to block his LoS to most of her crew (and kept it up the whole game, tweaking the location by turn), then put some hurt on Ravage.  Samael used his Burn Them Out to put Burning on Ravage.  At the end of the turn, Ravage was down to one wound, with the Guardian and the Death Marshall in close range, plus Sonnia in range of Ooops.

Pere Ravage ready to blow
Pere Ravage ready to blow

Turn two initiative was excting – could I get Ravage to suicide himself before Alfonso could neutralize him?  He flipped a 12, and I flipped low.  Despite the long odds, I decided to burn a stone, but still lost initiative.  The Death Marshall activated and killed Ravage.  This put wounds on the Guardian and the Death Marshall, but summoned another Witchling Stalker.

Otherwise, Francois ran up and killed the Death Marshall, before getting ganged up on and killed, giving Alfonso a Reckoning point.  The Austringer got hemmed.  The Silurid kept dropping markers along his flank.  Rami took more potshots, and Raphael put the hurt on a Stalker.

Turn three, Zoraida stabbed the doll to kill the Austringer (including cheating the defensive flip down with the black joker).  Rami and Raphael finished off the Guardian.  The Silurid kept leaping around, dropping scheme markers.  Sonnia took the bait, and killed the Silurid dead (giving me full Frame for Murder points), and clipped Raphael with extreme blasting as well.  Zoraida stabbed the doll, killing both it and the Austringer.  The Austringer’s Finish the Job meant that there were two scheme markers in base contact.  Alfonso revealed Bodyguard on Samael, and kept him hiding behind a building and Sonnia’s Flame Wall.

It was getting late, so turn four would be our last.  Raphael repositioned to be in Protect Territory range of the scheme markers, but got killed.  A Witchling Stalker came out from behind a corner and sat right next to the two scheme markers.  Sadly, it wasn’t quite in base contact, so Zoraida couldn’t Obey it to Interact them away.  Instead, Z Obeyed it to walk away, and came out and dropped her own marker.  The Nurse and Rami did the same.  Samael came out of hiding and sat next to the two markers that the Witchling Stalker had abandoned.

The game ended, with a 7 to 6 win for Alfonso.  We both got full points for our schemes, and Alfonso got one Reckoning point.  Alfonso played a great game.  He kept his models safe behind the Flame Wall, which forced me to either spend AP repositioning Rami or hit suboptimal targets, or both.

I had a blast with the Gremlins.  Reckless and Dumb Luck are both a ton of fun.  Dirty Cheater is a very handy little upgrade, and mostly erases the down sides of Reckless.

One key mistake was activating Pere Ravage early in turn one.  If I had held him back until later in the turn, Alfonso would have had less of a chance to try to take him down.  Hitting him with the Uppers and Hemming him (and using Dance Puppet) was probably overkill, too, without getting him to blow on turn one.  Next time, I might try to hit him with the Nurse, Obey him forward with Z, then blow him on his own activation.  Or just run him forward with Reckless late in the turn, then blow at the start of turn two.

I’m also still not quite sure what to do with Francois.  He seems to want to be in melee, but died pretty quickly unsupported.  Maybe I should keep him back as a shooter, and only move forward to respond, or protect the rest of the gunline.

I’m looking forward to more Gremlins, and having enough models to use Ophelia at 50 stones.



Adepticon Wrapup

I recently spent four days near Chicago attending Adepticon, a major miniatures con.  It was my first time there, and I had a blast.


First up was registration.  I arrived at about 10 am on Thursday, which would have been after the main rush.  I had splurged and gotten the VIG badge, which gives you a tshirt and other fancy bits in the swag bag.  I ended up with starter boxes for Dropzone Commander, Wrath of Kings, and Hordes, plus a bunch of individual minis.

Some of the VIG swag
Some of the VIG swag

My first event was a seminar on building scenery.  Marcin Ignasiak, the instructor, did a nice job of corralling people through making a foamcore tower.  I have kind of a catch-22 situation with terrain.  I don’t have any, because I don’t play at home, because I don’t have terrain.  Maybe I can get myself out, or at least make some pieces to donate to a store.

My watchtower, slightly damaged on the flight home
My watchtower, slightly damaged on the flight home

I then had a little time to check out the vendor hall, redeem some vouchers from the swag bag, and learn about some of the games on display.  I got a demo in for Aetherium, which is a minis game with a Matrix/Tron setting with a very interesting mechanic around manipulating the board.

My first game event was Combat Patrol, a rapid fire collection of 400 point 40k games.  I brought my Deathwatch, which was chosen more around models I had painted than what I thought would be good at 400 points.  I ended up pretty low in the rankings, but had three fun games.


My main event for Friday was the 40k Friendly.  I brought my Dark Eldar for this, which I only had one game in with the not-so-new codex.  They split us up into teams of about 15 players, and it had a camping theme, complete with merit badges.  During the breaks, I helped win the pie eating contest for Team Pink.  This was another fun three games, although my Reaper got its gun blown off all three games, and managed to immobilize itself between table quarters, making it completely useless.  I brought a bunch of small Reaver units, which were awesome.  I miss my drive-by attacks, but D6 S6 Rending hits on the charge are pretty nice.

Friendly sash and merit badges
Friendly sash and merit badges

I had a bit of time, so I learned a bit about Wreck Age, a post-apoc skirmish game.  I also demoed Broken Contract, a skirmish game which pits exploited miners against The Man (reminds me of Red Faction).  It just launched a Kickstarter for its miniature starter set.

In the evening, I went to a seminar on green stuff.  It was a nice introduction to actually sculpting.  Joe Orteza, the instructor, was clearly experienced at giving the class.  My one criticism would be that he would sometimes work on your piece without being entirely clear on what he was doing.  I’m hoping to put these new skills (and tools) to work.

Green stuff, plus some tools
Green stuff, plus some tools

Saturday morning I ran into Matt Stanley of Nova Open fame.  Once I said I was playing Malifaux, he went into sales mode.  Sadly, flying to just one game con this year is already pushing it a bit.

The main event of the day was the Masters of Malifaux.  I played Neverborn, and played all three of my masters across five rounds (Lynch once, and Lilith and Zoraida twice each).  I lost the first three rounds, although not by much.  The highlight for the first set was in game three, with Breakthrough and Deliver a Message in the pool.  I managed to Leap a Silurid to deliver to Seamus early in the game.  At the end of the game, there were a bunch of dudes converging on Zoraida.  I decided to Animal Shape her 15″ out of the way.  My opponent saw an opportunity.  He managed to walk Sybelle out of engagement with a Silurid to get close to Zoraida.  He then Called a Belle from across the board, who activated to Deliver a Message right back to me.  Even though it cost me the game, it was well played and exciting to see.

Game four I managed to pull out a win with Lilith vs Rasputina.  I threw Lilith into the fray, which got her killed.  She did manage to keep my opponent’s crew bottled up in a corner, though.  I had Waldgeists holding both Stash markers all game, and other models running around accomplishing schemes.

Game five started out rough.  I was so fried from playing all day that I could barely put a crew together and didn’t end up having a good idea how I wanted it to work.  It was my Zoraida vs Lilith.  He brought the twins, who messed up my left flank, while the rest of his crew advanced up the middle.  On my right flank, however, I was able to send a Silurid forward to get Breakthrough and Power Ritual scheme markers down.  The Performer ended up being the MVP of the game.  She pulled off the pseudo-Expunge trick pretty well with the Voodoo Doll and Nurse.  She also used her Siren Call to pull models into and out of position, foiling plans.  In the end, we managed a 5-5 draw.

All in all, a really fun set of games, although five rounds is rough.  Surprising enough. the 105 minute round time worked pretty well.  I finished all games except one.

I then had just enough time to shove some food in before heading into my final seminar, Blood, Pus, and Guts with Michelle Blastenbrei.  This class was largely showing a few techniques and materials, then a chance to play.  I was pretty worn out from Malifaux all day, so wasn’t able to get as much out of it as I would have liked.  I also managed to forget the handout in the room.

Playing with Blood
Playing with Blood


I had signed up to do the Malifaux Story Encounter on Sunday, but I wasn’t feeling it.  My schedule had been full enough, and the Masters the day before long enough, that I wasn’t really interested in another full day event.  Instead, I spent more time in the vendor hall and attended the Crystal Brush awards ceremony, plus I actually ate lunch outside the convention center.  I got a demo for Dropzone Commander.  The apparent focus on mobility is very interesting, plus I have a army starter box now.  I also got a Wild West Exodus demo, although it didn’t grab me.  I think the demo may have glossed over enough of the details that it was hard to get a real flavor for the game.  Wreck Age and Deep Wars both look interesting, but I didn’t get a chance to demo them.  ModCube is working on customizable counters in a cube, which seems interesting for damage markers and the like.

I ran into the Swag Wagon just before I was about to head out, and got handed a $25 voucher for one of the vendors, Toledo Game Room.  They had a ton of new and used minis for sale. I considered getting some beat up vehicles to use for terrain, but in the end decided on Malifaux and got a shiny new The Kin Ophelia box.


I scheduled myself for too much.  I wasn’t completely exhausted, but I ended up being happier skipping my Sunday event.  Even still, I didn’t get a chance to demo everything I wanted to.

Part of why I didn’t feel like the second day of Malifaux is that I didn’t feel like playing Neverborn again, even though the different masters mix it up.  So I should pick up another faction.  As luck would have it, I already have the Somer box and the Nightmare Whiskey Golem, since I’m a sucker for limited editions.  Combined with the Ophelia box, I should be in business.

I didn’t take enough notes or pictures.  I had a bunch of great games, but I can’t tell you too much about them, or even the names of most of my opponents.

By the time I decided to go (which was well before actual registration), the actual con hotel was sold out, and I ended up at the Embassy Suites a short walk away.  It was okay, but it meant I was hauling stuff back and forth, and didn’t really have an easy way to ditch my stuff and go be social or whatever.

I kind of wish I had opened my wallet a bit more in the vendor hall.  I resisted buying a bunch of things for a bunch of good reasons (how am I going to get it on the plane, con discounts aren’t any good if you don’t actually use the item, you can always buy it later from the FLGS or mail order if needed, plus do I really have time for another game?).  Still, I kind of regret not picking up the Aetherium base game.  Or some terrain from Tri-City Laser, which had some really neat stuff.  Or maybe something from Forge World.

All in all, I had a great time, and hope to go again next year.