Monday, April 30, 2012

Chronicles test run

Well, now.

Since the main developer of Chronicles actually had the time and interest to dig up my little blog thingy here, it inspired me to give a solo test run of the introductory adventure. It's actually rather easy with the aid of Vassal and the Warmachine & Hordes module I already had.

So, I created a three member party with following details:

Human Flame Wizard (with Improved Fireball) & Performer
Elf Hunter (with Sword Fighter)
Human Swordsman (with Defensive Stance)

Points: 16

Oh, and here was the first "judgement call" I had to make. Defensive Stance reads "You gain +2 to your FS value when defending", but the problem is that "defending" is also a game term meaning that you make no attack and gain defense bonuses. The other choice, offensive stance, on the other hand gives +2 FS when attacking. What you should always be doing anyway. I'm quite sure that for balance reasons Defensive Stance should give +2 FS when being attacked by an enemy in melee.

Also, a word about my adventuring party. Since I dislike "autoincludes" very highly regardless of a gaming system I wanted to test out a party without a healer. If game cannot be reasonably played without a dedicated healer, something's wrong.

That's why I chose defensive stance and sword fighter with elf hunter, to give them better survivability.


First scenario in "A New Start" was a piece of cake.

Only Swordsman took damage (8 - and even that was a result of nasty critical hit) and flame wizard had to use 7 skill points and elf hunter 5. Treasure rolled from d6 table was 10 gold pieces.

I did this "AI" to goblins that archers always shot the nearest target and as many goblins ganged up in melee as possible against one single target, because they seemed to me like things cliché fantasy goblins would do.

I was re-reading the rules for skill points now, and noticed that even damage rolls could be modified with skill points. I don't like that at all, so I decided to skip it in this test run entirely. Modifying dice rolls is heck of a powerful ability, and at least after the first scenario modifying damage rolls seemed too big of a help for players.

Story continues to village of Alden Crossing, where flame wizard rolls 25 gold coins for him with Performer defining trait. I guess the small community hadn't seen much magic lately.

Well, then the party entered second scenario with the Goblin Shaman as a boss.

This one was actually entertaining match!

I used same AI for goblin warriors and archers, but for shaman I decided that if it could see a model with no magic defense, it would shoot at it. Otherwise just the closest target.

This time swordsman had to use healing potion (well, the goblin shaman scored a critical against him...) and still took 10 points of damage. Hunter had to spend 5 skill points and took 6 damage. Flame wizard used a whopping 11 skill points, as he needed to shoot the goblin shaman with improved fireball a lot.

Treasure rolled was a red potion, which was allocated to swordsman.

Gem that was goblin shaman's treasure was 30 coins worth. I split gold so that I randomised the one who got the gem and divided other loot with rest two party members.

The search for copper necklace I handled so that everyone rolled search & detection and the item was randomised between all who succeeded. Flame wizard got the thing, and frankly he needed it the most.

The reason why I'm randomising some of these things is that I'm not playing a role playing game here - I'm playing a tabletop game that has heavy RPG influences. Randomising acts for me as some sort of simulated selfishness and character for player characters.

Now, when I continued storyline, next scenario looked like fun as my adventuring party had used most of their resources during last fight. There was no chance to rest, it looked like.

However, it was a fast and not-so-exciting battle. Captain is way too powerful ally, since he hits goblins on 4+ and kills them if he rolls at least 2+ on 1d6. And even if he rolls 1 for damage, the goblin survives with 1 hit point only if it rolls a 3 for defense on 1d3. There was no challenge whatsoever in this battle scene. Maybe that was because Captain is actually a 13 point character, but was listed as a 5 point ally. That would have meant 4 goblin warriors more.

My suggestion here would be that this scenario has a third type of enemy and maybe a little harsher penalty for losing running/jumping check. Maybe not being able to make attacks during first turn.

Anyway, after scenario ended Elf Hunter had taken 3 damage (used one potion) and used 5 skill points. Captain had taken two damage points. Swordsman had taken six damage (used one potion) and flame wizard had used 10 skill points (had drunk the blue potion he got from last scenario's shaman boss)

After getting back to town two characters had enough gold to take advantage of Captains generous offer. Swordsman took Shield Block and Flame Wizard trained Wall of Fire.

Then adventures got a free night and feast for saving up the village. Swordsman didn't have a good nights sleep I guess, because he rolled only 3 for healing.

Next adventures would be made with a 19 point party, then.

Now, what can I say.

At least that much that the rule system has a lot of potential. There seems to be a little bit too much "kiddie gloves" built into the system, which is good enough if you aim for a survival of the characters and getting immersed in their personality and, well, playing their "role". But when you look into that with the eyes of a tabletop gamer, being able to modify damage roll after rolling the dice and being able to save yourself from a critical fail by just spending skill points does seem "too easy".

Thursday, April 26, 2012

A word about Chronicles

I'm a frequent visitor to Tabletopgamingnews, because it's a handy site that gives a broad overview of what's happening in the tabletop industry.

Today I noticed an interesting project - an Open Source Skirmish RPG called Chronicles. Usually I'm not too interested in "homebrew" stuff, but this one has a lot of people involved and the possibilities Chronicles has got me intrigued.

I will be keeping an eye on this project, at least I want to see the core book II and a couple of adventure "modules" before I make up my mind if I'm totally fascinated by it or is my interest some idle curiosity.

What sparks me in Chronicles is that it combines elements of tabletop wargaming and role playing games. Battle scenes are done with the miniature scenery you've grown used to, and battles are scaled to use inches. Characters can progress, which is nice. What I'd like to see is that they could be permanently injured, too. Maybe they can if it's something Core Book II offers.

However, what I dislike is the need for a "game master". Well, rulebook stresses that you don't actually need one, but at least as-it-is the game looks ill-suited for play without the game master. Adversaries and adventures plot advancement isn't "scripted" well enough.

That can be a thing adventure "modules" correct. If the design team releases adventures that require zero GM input, this thing starts to look like a cooperative tabletop skirmish wargame with some kind of plot and character advancement, which sounds awesome in my books.

Well, these were the thoughts on this nice looking project.

Link to the homepage of the project is in the second paragraph of this post, in case someone became interested and overlooked it.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Need to get used to weeping

I played a 50 point warmachine game today.

I was playing with Scaverous and my list had:

- Nightwretch
Warwitch Siren

And opponent had:

Witch Coven of Garlghast
- 2x Nightwretches
Warwitch Siren

I won starting roll and first picture is taken from the end of opponents first round. Picture quality leaves much to be hoped for, but enemy is there far away and my troops are closer to camera.

Coven pretty much advanced as far as possible and used their feat. And it was a good choice, really, as it limited my options quite a bit.

But I did try something, warwitch siren power boosted a nightwretch of mine and it ran close to Bane Lord Tartarus. Scaverous casts Feast of Worms on a nearby bile thrall who was sitting in a forest. Needs 5 to hit. Double 2's. Feast deviates so Bane Lord Tartarus is just out of Area of Effect.

I had planned that once Tartarus had -2 arm I would've cast Excarnate on him. Probably wouldn't have killed him, but well, didn't need to worry about it no longer. I opted to cast Telekinesis on Tartarus instead and turned it facing it's old mates in the woods, the Bane Knights.

Then it was opponents turn.

Warwitch Siren power boosted an opposing Nightwretch and Skarlock cast Infernal Machine on it. Then it ran within 10" of Scaverous. And then first Stygian Abyss without a hit boost scores a critical hit, giving -3 def and inability to move for Scaverous.

And not a single damage roll after that scored less than 14 with 3 dice.

I don't know.

When I play with Scaverous, even the damage rolls I receive aren't average.

That warcaster must be cursed, I say, cursed!

Of course it was a bit foolish of me to throw focus around like that, especially after my initial plans failed. But funny thing was - if I had camped up those 3 focus the Telekinesis cost Scaverous, he still would have lost on a roll of 4+. We counted up the damage, and given +3 armor on all Stygian Abysses Scaverous would have left alive with 2 hit boxes left with the last damage roll of 6, 6, 2. Now, the 4+ this time comes from the fact that Coven hadn't used Tremulus' Puppet Master re-roll.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Black Rituals

A quick change of plans and things went into Warmachine today.

We played a 35 point game at the local gaming shop, and this time I brought my Skorne along with me.

I was against epic Kaya with three warpwolves and other stuff, same list as earlier when I played against her.

My list was:

Dominar Rasheth
- Bronzeback Titan
- Rhinodon
- Basilisk Krea

Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + Unit Attachment
Minimum unit of Beast Handlers
Venator Flayer Cannon
Extoller Soulward
Orin Midwinter

Opponent won the starting roll and went first. First picture is taken from end of opponents second turn. The map had a nasty bottle neck that was formed by the two buildings. This worked to disadvantage of both players, but, well. I was facing epic Kaya with a handful of beasts so I guess the buildings bothered Circle a bit less.

I tried to set up some counter charge lanes, but it was difficult. Next picture has a weird angle, but gives impression of how the buildings were affecting the game.

That turn Thrullg ate one engaging war wolf, and Rasheth cast Breath of Corruption to forest, nailing druid wilder and giving four points of damage to Lord of the Feast.

Orin Midwinter also cast lightning that arced 3 times to the other war wolf and scored a hit. Lightning bounced to heavy warbeasts, and much to my suprise, both warpwolf stalker and feral were damaged by the spell.

Then it was time for Kaya to use her feat. Rhinodon was hit with Dogpile and Rhinodon was smashed to bits by Warpwolf Stalker and Feral. Stalker would have probably made a barbeque party just by itself, but opponents dice were pretty damn cruel there. I guess that saved my basilisk Krea from being made into frog legs.

Another War Wolf came to engage thrullg, but Bronzeback counter charged it. Woo hoo. One point kill for Bronzeback.

Kaya's feat could have been a lot worse here, but still. Opponent was unassailable by my forces and I had lost a heavy warbeast.

On my next turn I was a bit obsessed by Lord of the Feast. But it's one of those models that usually cause somewhat obsessive need to kill him before the ravens fly.

This time the ancient manifestation of devourer wurm bit the dust (breath?).

With my other troops I just closed in, except Orin Midwinter, who shot another lightning that arced 3 times to a shifting stone. This time at least Laris took damage, don't remember the other damages.

Next picture includes both my turn and opponents turns, as Circle backed up and healed all damage Orin Midwinter ever did. Nice try there, old man, but your efforts were in vain. Laris came and ate him and then teleported to Kaya, wagging its tail merrily. At least that's how I picture it. "Aw, cootchie cootchie choo... You came back to mama... what's you got in your mouth there? Oh, is it someones pancreas? You naughty doggy, I hope it isn't one of our initiates again..."

Well, then. I try to get aggressive, but the only aggressive thing was the stern look basilisk Krea gave to feral warpwolf, which was paralysed as a result.

Oh, and a praetorian swordman charged a shifting stone and destroyed it. And after that he side-stepped so Rasheth might cast Breath of Corruption through him.

Stalker and Laris were damaged and the stone itself was left with one hit point.

Now, opponent just activated the stones and the stone in question took one point of damage and was destroyed. It melted away from blocking Stalker's charge.

Who then did charge swordmen. It killed three of them and sprinted to safety of a nearby forest.

On my turn extoller soulward gave Eyeless Sight to venator flayer cannon, who did the only thing right it ever did in this game: shot warpwolf stalker and dealt enough damage to knock its mind off. Encouraged by this thrullg advanced to be used as a target for black rituals. Rasheth activated and cast Carnivore on swordsmen and breath of corruption on last remaining shifting stone. Resulting damage killed Laris.

Swordsmen then charged warpwolf stalker, but this is where my dice failed. Two of the four who got in contact missed and the two who hit didn't roll exactly awesome numbers on damage.

Heh, looks like the dice I rolled for Krea's paralysis gaze are still on table in the picture. I just don't get it how you can just look so horribly wrong that your gaze misses.

Well, next turn opponent brutally crushes my beasts and deals 11 points of damage to Rasheth.

Feral Warpwolf kills the mighty titan whose best achievement during this game was killing an already damaged 1 point solo. Luckily titans don't go down easily and feral is maxed on fury.

Also pureblood warpwolf misses, what, four attacks in a row against basilisk Krea. So it becomes maxed on fury too.

Stalker has to heal itself to repair its mind, after which it does a little berzerk chain and is maxed on fury.

So Kaya charges basilisk Krea, kills it with one strike and casts Muzzle on Rasheth, dealing 11 points.

Since there was no damage transfer target for Kaya, Rasheth tried to blast her with spells. First he unleashes Plague Wind and then a fully boosted Sunder Spirit hit home. After that a breath of corruption with damage boost is landed on her, which damage roll was 5, 5, 5.

It was a good game, something different for a while. But I cannot feel like a scheming mastermind here now, since looked like that at times opponent couldn't roll above 4, even with 3 dice, and especially on somewhat critical places.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

No rest for the Bronzeback

Played a game of Warmachine on Vassal during a course of couple last days.

That's one good point of Vassal, too. If game takes longer than you anticipate and you need to go, you can just save it up as a file rather than leaving your models sitting on the table.

We played 50 point game with my Skorne against my friends Protectorate of Menoth. We used scenario the scenario Gauntlet, which is represented by yellow areas in the pictures. You score a point from the opposing zone, and with two points you win.

My list was:

Tyrant Hexeris
- Bronzeback Titan
- Cyclops Shaman
- Basilisk Drake
- Basilisk Krea

Minimum unit of Cataphract Cetrati
Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + Unit Attachment
Maximum unit of Paingiver Beasthandlers
Venator Flayer Cannon
Swamp Gobbers
Bloodrunner Master Tormentor
Orin Midwinter

And opponent was playing:

Epic Severius
- Templar
- Reckoner
- Redeemer
- Revenger

Daughters of the Flame
Maximum unit of Holy Zealots + Monolith Bearer
Minimum unit of Choir of Menoth
2x Paladins of the Order of the Wall
Vassal Mechanik
Vassal of Menoth

Opponent won the starting roll and first picture is from the end of my first turn.

Otherwise things would've been quite nice, but Severius had Awareness -spell to counter forest and cloud effect from the table. Boo. So, in a way, my most important defense against shooting was, again, Basilisk Krea.

On opponents next turn Bronzeback takes a good mauling from both Reckoner and Redeemer. The titan is set on fire, but otherwise not much happened there.

On my next turn I jumped at the chance when opponent made some mistakes in focus allocation and didn't upkeep Holy Ward on Daughters of the Flame. So Hexeris cast Obliteration on them and wiped most. Also Bloodrunner Master Tormentor managed to charge into melee and killed what, two models.

Cetrati were advancing in shield wall, so all in all, my line was approaching enemy alarmingly slow, when you take into account Reckoner and Redeemer and their firepower.

Then lots of stuff happened at once.

First, epic Severius uses his feat and takes control of all of my Cetrati except the unit leader. They don't manage to kill anything, but mess up shield wall and opened up a curious charge for Templar: It charged and killed Cetrati in front of Bronzeback, moved with Beat Back and killed Thrullg and moved with Beat Back and then engaged Bronzeback. Luckily it could buy only one attack, but the mighty titan was already on its death throes.

Vilmon luckily fell short on his charge attack against Bronzeback. That would have been all that was needed to finish it.

Zealots denied targeting spells on them and popped Greater Destiny.

So, damage I took in its entirety wasn't all that great during epic Severius' feat turn, but I had quite a puzzle to solve. After all I was close to losing my Bronzeback and opponent would still be left with one heavy warjack and two lights, one of which was Revenger.

Well. I did my best!

Krea and shaman were enraged. Two remaining Cetrati killed Vilmon and engaged Reckoner. Shaman tried to charge Reckoner but missed even with boosted attack roll. Damn that choking veil!

Oh, by the way, Hexeris had activated and used his feat. The only joy I got from using his feat was killing Vilmon and striking Templar with it, dealing something like 8 points in. Nice enough, but rather a lame feat.

Hexeris shot Soulfire through Basilisk Drake at Vassal Mechanic and managed to kill him.

Then a bit later Orin Midwinter shot lighting at Revenger and arced full 3 times, starting from Reclaimer who was about 2 pixels closer than closest Zealot. Double sixes did a couple of damage points to Revenger, and even the old man himself suffered two points of damage. Good job, Orin!

Bronzeback wrecked Templar. No suprises there.

So, then was opponents next turn, which I awaited with horror.

Reckoner slapped Cyclops down with just two hits, but the Cetrati engaging it proved to be a much difficult enemy. It didn't go down until Vassal gave Ancillary Attack to Reckoner, which could have hurt a lot more if applied to ranged attack.

Zealots decimated most of Praetorian Swordmen unit.

Revenger, fully loaded with focus, charged to Bronzeback Titan. Who died.

Then Feralgeist jumped into the carcass earlier known as beaten, battered and burning Bronzeback. So it's tormented existence was bound to continue.

Now, Revenger still has one attack after this. It hits and deals two points in, knocking off recently healed spirit and mind. Now... this is where I actually feel pity for the poor beast... It took the alpha strike to its tough hide, had to suffer volleys after volleys of rockets and whatever the Reckoner shoots and finally once its miserable life is coming to an end, it is resurrected as an undead beast.

It's only fitting that it lost its spirit and mind branches - I guess I would be a bit confused and terrified and attacking in frenzy whatever is in front of me had I lived a life of torture and finally when peace comes over me, someone, or something, invades my soul and keeps me from dying.

Then comes my turn.

Things could be worse. Flames on Bronzeback extinguish themselves. But still I was down to two basilisks as my beasts, because, well. Bronzeback was technically on the table but its full potential was gone.

Enraged Krea (who used its animus to give mindless Bronzeback a hitting chance against Revenger), Bronzeback and finally Hexeris himself combined their efforts to destroy Revenger. And they succeeded. Also, Flayer cannon shot the lone choir member inside the scoring area. Which was the best thing Flayer did during this match.

Then basilisk Drake advanced and sprayed Severius and dealt quite a bit of damage in. And, hey, first control point in gauntlet for Skorne!

Well, then opponents next turn.

Ancillary Attack by Reckoner drops the last Cetrati to one hit point (yeah, it's damage roll was 4), so Severius himself marches on and shoots Cetrati with Reign of Fire. Boosts attack and damage roll and deals one point in. Damn.

Then Reckoner charges basilisk Krea and kills it. Then Redeemer charges basilisk Drake and kills it. There Hexeris was, all beastless. Well, with the exception of one devastated Bronzeback.

So, when my turn came, I didn't have other option than to win the game now. Protectorate had won in attrition. I did all I could to the warjacks, but it was all for nought. Aptimus did kill one zealot with fully boosted Soulfire, filling Hexeris with fury. By the way, as a hint, Aptimus is awesome doing exactly just that with Lord Tyrant Hexeris - shooting a fully boosted Soulfire with a couple of souls and giving Hexeris one Fury beyond his maximum.

Then Hexeris charges Reckoner and because of the angle I used for charge, Severius was out of Hexeris' front arc at first. Beat back saves that situation, but Hexeris suffers from Reckoner's choking veil.

First boosted Soulfire at Severius. Miss.

Second boostes Soulfire at Severius. Hit. Damage boost. Three points in. Severius had three health boxes left.

Had not Aptimus been around giving Fury to Hexeris with Soulfire, the last damage roll couldn't have been boosted. Phew. Close call again for Hexeris.

Every single game with him has been awesomely exciting. And because of Bronzeback's epic elegy of "survival", this is tagged as an epic game.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The tragedy that goes by the name of failing memory

Yesterday I had a special occasion of playing two games of Warmachine at the local gaming shop Fantasiapelit Jyväskylä.

They were both 35 point caster kill games, and my list was on both occasions:

Iron Lich Asphyxious
- Cankerworm
- 2x Nightwretches
- Harrower

Maximum unit of Satyxis Raiders + Sea Witch
Warwitch Siren
Satyxis Raider Captain

And first game was against forces of Circle Orboros with following list:

Epic Kaya & Laris
- Feral Warpwolf
- Pureblood Warpwolf
- Warpwolf Stalker

Shifting Stones
Druid Wilder
Lord of the Feast
2x War Wolves

I won the starting roll and went first. The hill in the middle is a rough terrain hill. Asphyxious is standing there just because he wants to look cool.

Picture is taken from the end of opponents first turn. This was my first time facing epic Kaya in Mk2, so I didn't know exactly what to expect. Also, pardon the pictures, my camera was running out of batteries so it didn't focus right. Heh. Focus right. (Okay, someone hit me now, hard.)

Anyway, on my next turn all I did was wrecking one shifting stone and killing war wolves. The distance to opponents juicy targets was way too big.

I tried to position satyxis & the rest so that Lord of the Feast needed to risk a lot to score a solid hit and wreck face. I didn't even try to escape the damage it could do, just make pulling it off difficult.

But then, this is actually last picture of the game. Opponent does something completely unexpected.

Laris activates first and runs close to Asphyxious. Kaya uses her feat and casts Laris' animus and teleports next to Asphyxious. Now, I was fortunate enough that she scores no hits and left only one fury left for transfers.

However, my warcaster was surrounded with three warpwolves and enemy warlock who had def 18 thanks to Laris.

If I had had any other warcaster the chances for killing her would have needed plenty of lucky rolls. Thanks to Soulsplitter's Sustained Attack I needed only one. Asphyxious scored a hit on second attack. The game was over.

And as the first game was so fast, we decided to play another one.

Game 2:

This time opponent took Retribution of Scyrah as his army, and this was his list:

Kaelyssa the Night's Whisper
- Phoenix
- Discordia

Full unit of Mage Hunter Strikeforce + Commander
Stormfall Archers
2x Mage Hunter Assassins
Sylys Wyshnalyrr

Opponent won the starting roll, but let me go first. I was a bit weirded out by this, but saw why very soon, actually.

Since Mage Hunters ignored just about everything else except elevation bonuses, I packed as much of my pathfinders on the hill as possible.

Then it was opponents turn.

Retribution of Scyrah closed in and Mage Hunter Strikeforce wrecked Nightwretch for starters. And then Kaelyssa used her feat.

That was... just not fair. My full unit of Satyxis Raiders were ready to wipe most of opposing infantry and... and... Bah.

Well, I decided that maybe I'd be better off backing off a little and then launching a devastating charge next turn. But, this second picture is taken from the end of opponents second turn:

Not exactly too much troops anymore for any kind of a charge.

First, Discordia marched up and fried two Satyxis and their captain.

Kaelyssa herself shoots a couple of whip wielders down (She had Phantom Hunter and her own True Sight going on and everything.) and Stormfall Archers set Harrower and two satyxis on fire.

Strikeforce shoots up some damage to Harrower.

I was ready to do some suicidal charges on my next turn. I just didn't know which charges were suicidal and which were not.

Skarlock cast Scything Touch on Satyxis Raiders, who used Power Swell and charged Discordia.

Their damage rolls were godlike. Really. Those three that got into contact with Discordia wrecked the undamaged myrmidon. Such unexpected rolls made me almost feel bad.

But then Harrower charged the Mage Hunter Strike Force. That one didn't go too well. It had been allocated two focus, but still it managed to kill only four from the unit, though it had about eight of them within reach. Really, that was a moment when I missed Infernal Machine or Terminal Velocity...

Well, then. Mage Hunter Assassin charges Harrower and the remaining Strikeforce members make a huge combined melee attack, making a wreck out of the helljack. I guess what comes around, goes around.

Kaelyssa moves forward and starts shooting Asphyxious.

Asphyxious is left with six hit boxes. But he lives. Or unlives, exists, whatever.

Now, I had a busy turn. Asphyxious moved up to the hill, cast some stuff, including Scything Touch on Cankerworm! and used his feat.

The feat killed almost all Mage Hunter Strikeforce members, which was somewhat soothing.

I had to change my plans on the go, as I remembered Kaelyssa had Witch Hound, and I didn't want to mess up everything as almost happened with my recent encounter with Reznik.

And at last Asphyxious teleported into some measure of safety.

Other models cleared a path for Cankerworm to engage Kaelyssa.

I make a replicator attack first and boost attack roll. 1, 1, 1.

Well, then I make a bite attack which thankfully hits and deals enough damage with it's measly P+S 11 to bring Kaelyssa down to 2 hit boxes. She was already a bit damaged from Feedbacks from Satyxis Raiders and one free strike from Satyxis Domintatrix.

That was all I could do.

Kaelyssa advances and takes a free strike from Cankerworm, who misses.

Then she shoots Asphyxious down.

We pack up stuff, chit and chat and do stuff and then we go home.

And when I'm walking home it struck me.

Cankerworm, the poor bastard, had Scything Touch on. And Kaelyssa was left to 2 hit boxes. And Scything Touch gives +2 to damage rolls.

Lé Sigh. Learn to remember your upkeep spells was the lesson of this game I guess. Heh.

Anyway, it was nice and refreshing to meet armies that are less common here in this city, and games were good too. Last game especially was damn tough and hopefully the horrible blows struck where it hurts by both teams will make me less bitter about the whole Cankerworm business.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

And a third (Talisman)

A couple of days ago I was visiting friends at Salo.

We played still one game of Talisman (we even started fourth, but then came... distractions.

Anyway, we played again with a random ending. Which happened to be the Eagle King, which was a bit lame, because it was so similar with our last random ending.

Characters that were drawn were Prophetess, Philosopher and Swashbuckler.

Prophetess found the Mercenary -follower pretty early in the game, which boosted her battles considerably.

Swashbuckler, on the other hand, played two turns in a row almost every turn. The speed in which Swashbuckler trekked from battle to battle was intimidating. I guess he lived a too dangerous and blood-quenched life, because it didn't take too long for him to turn into Evil alignment.

Philosopher. Uh. Now that one is a bit sad tale to tell. The player who got it thought that best tactic with Philosopher is to kill him right away. Which was done soon enough. A new character was drawn, which was the Dragon Rider.

And it's painful to say, but it seemed that the tactic worked just fine.

Once Dragon Rider had acquired a dragon mount, she went nuts with Warlock Quests. I've never seen that many warlock quests finished in a game of Talisman. I think Dragon Rider finished something like 10 quests.

But the dragon mount was perfect for "grinding" quests. Many quests are "travel to somewhere" -types of quests, and with such a powerful way to affect movement roll it's quite easy to get where you want.

Prophetess got a couple of lucky additions to her Strenght and went to dungeon with Swashbuckler. There her strenght just continued to rise, pretty much thanks to Mercenary. In fact her Strenght (without additions from items) was a lot higher than her Craft!

Swashbuckler started the end game by entering Inner Region. Dragon Rider came just a few steps behind him (thanks to Spiteful Imp). At this point Prophetess had unsportingly undermined Swashbuckler's items and even base strenght with Syphon Strenght -spell. She had highest base stats around, but was missing one vital piece to enter Inner Region - The Talisman.

However, once Swashbuckler got into Crown of Command it was revealed that the players were facing Eagle King. Swashbuckler beat King once, but lost second fight and was teleported to the Crags.

Pretty much same happened to Dragon Rider.

At this point Prophetess had finally managed to find herself a talisman. Swashbuckler and Dragon Rider were in a hurry to get just a few stat rises. To buy themselves a little more time they threw quite a lot of stuff in front of her. A "random" spell was cast (which made her lose all her gold - not good for the Mercenary's paycheck!) and she was forced to take a warlock's quest. Which was rather devious plan, actually. If she had had the requirements done, she'd have been teleported to Warlock's Cave. Also Swashbuckler stole her Energize spell, which would have been put to good use at Eagle King.

But in the end Prophetess went to the crown and mauled Eagle King.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Two games of Talisman

I'm having quite a streak of Talisman at the moment. I'm visiting friends at Salo, and I had Talisman with me.

On Friday we played two games, and I try to remember something from them.

First game was played with all the sideboards and quest rewards but with no other expansions, since we had a player who had never played Talisman and another who had some aeons since last game of Talisman.

Characters drawn were Warlock, Valkyrie and Dwarf.

Too bad I no longer remember too many nice little details, except that the Dwarf had a severe case of identity problems. His alignment was changing all the time, and most funny change of heart happened when he was visiting the Chapel and he was good at the moment. However, the Warlock cast temporary change on the Dwarf, making him evil. He wasn't all that welcomed at the chapel then any more.

Ultimately the Warlock won the game. If I remember right Valkyrie was already running up there in the Inner Region and Dwarf could have come there too any time had he had a Talisman. Warlock teleported to Valley of Fire with Arnkell (a treasure from Eagle King), and once he was at the Crown of Command he rolled only 6's to the Command Spell.


Game 2:

Then we played a second game.

This time we took a random ending and the Grim Reaper expansions in addition to earlier stuff.

Characters drawn were Highlander, Ghoul and Merchant.

Highlander played a very patriotic game, since he spent way more than half of his turns in the Highlands boards. Somehow he just got stuck there.

Ghoul, on the other hand, played a game that challenged all the clichés in fantasy stories. Ghoul started as a horrible undead creature that sucked the life essence of other characters. However, Grim Reaper visited Ghoul soon enough, and it was killed and reincarnated as an evil Wizard.

Usually the story progress is so that the living wizard turn into an undead monstrosity. But not this time around.

Now, Wizard got a talisman quite soon. Other equipment he had was armor, and two axes. Merchant happened to stumble upon him, so after merchants visit Wizard had two armors and two axes. And Merchant had talisman.

So, Merchant had had rather nice additions to strenght and craft, so he went to seek out what was waiting there at Crown of Command. Highlander was coming close behind.

Turned out there was the Ice Queen, who proved just a little too tough for Merchant to handle.

And once Highlander got there, the Queen was just a little too tough for him without a charge attack. So Highlander had to charge, miss a turn, charge, miss a turn ad infinitum.

Despite his slow progress, though, no other characters got to the Crown fast enough, and so Highlander won the epic fight against Ice Queen and was declared the ruler of everything and all.