Monday, October 14, 2013

The Final Map and Campaign Results

And so it ends. With the dust settling on the final siege, the dwarves eventually proved victorious and cast out the liche and his forces from the old ogre capital. With the undead denied clear victory, who emerges as the ruler of the Sundered Isles? The final results tell us the awful truth:

So, after a two year campaign, the vampire counts and the dwarves carve up the isles and establish a border between the two realms. Nestled in the new dwarven lands are the remnants of the Bretonnian kingdom, and far to the East the forces of chaos cling on. In the undead lands nothing remains but empty keeps and blasted lands, the people fled or enslaved.

We began the campaign with nine players, and generally things went pretty smoothly. A dedicated GM (thanks Tom) and regular map updates (thanks me) were a huge help. The ability to roll off battles when folks couldn't play was a big plus, and later on we used Universal Battle to play online if we couldn't meet face to face. Next time, and we already have six players signed up, we will probably put a cap on the amount of years the game lasts. Five would probably be enough. The Blood in the Badlands rules are quite good too, so we might give that a shot.

This blog is a pretty good record of our exploits, so if anyone out there finds it of use for their own campaigns then all is good. Campaignhammer 2 is already in discussion.

Finally, a parting shot from the old liche.

High in the towers of the old Elven capital which rose from the cliffs of the Northern coast of Kinsblood isle, Morbius stood  over a large table covered in maps of the isles. He had fled from the dwarven assault on the keep on Kanesdue, and the dwarves had wasted no time in re-fortifying it and anchoring their Southern borders around the new docks built there. Thomas had never returned, and Morbius surmised that he had met his final end on the walls of the ogre keep.

Over the following months the dwarves had established  a tenuous border, their ironclads patrolling the seas off Kinsblood and the isle of mists. They dared not venture too close, as the ghost hulks of his new fleets were always waiting for a stray ship to lag behind. 

Morbius looked up from his musings at the hammering above him. Human workers laboured to finish re-roofing the main hall of the elven fortress. Many had been taken from the villages to the North, as precious few elves still lived on the island. It was not the graceful and flowing wood work of the Asur, but it was sturdy and it would keep the rain off. Skeletal drudges toiled alongside the humans, neither tiring or complaining. They were less exacting in their trade, but they served. Soon enough the keep would be restored and the real work could begin. There were tens of thousands of corpses mouldering in the earth or rotting at the bottom of the ocean the length and breath of the isles after the war, and Morbius hated to waste a good corpse.

With a cheery chuckle, he returned to his maps.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Final Battle - Campaign's End

The Ogre's surprise attack had worked, and Admiral Storinson's fleet had been decimated. His own flagship had been one of the earliest casualties. He smiled as he remembered swimming towards the Ogre ship in an attempt to ram his pegleg through their hull.

His steel pegleg had been just sharp enough, and it had penetrated the ogre hull. Unfortunately not with enough force to hole it. Instead, it had wedged itself soundly in the large wooden planks. He had spent the next week flopping about attached to the side of the ogre vessel, alternating between keeping his head above water and trying to extricate his steel leg from the hull. So deep was the slayer rage that it had not occurred to him to unscrew the leg.

Eventually he had worked it loose of it’s wooden prison, and his hook hand had pierced a large chunk of driftwood while he sank into cold unconsciousness.

But he did not die.

It had taken days of swimming, if you could call splashing with an iron prosthetic leg and one hook for a hand ‘swimming’. For a while he had almost convinced himself that the sea would be a worthy doom. After all, who could beat the Sea in battle? But he had persevered, his powerful shoulders and arms pulling him through the water and he had found land.

The simultaneous shock and pleasure when he realised that he had crawled onto an unknown beach of Kanesdue, the Ogre homeland, was an odd feeling

 After months of hard travel, filled with empty stomachs and doom-seeking-adventures, he arrived at the Ogre capital ‘The Great Hall’. Looking over at it from nearby hills, he squinted. He squinted some more. Depth perception is hard when you’ve got one eye. Yep. It was a Dwarf army mustering outside the walls.

“All righ’ LADS!”, Storrisson roared as he strolled up to the group of slayers.
“Who are you? Havne seen yoo before”, said one suspiciously.
“Suspicious eh? I like that. Yoo can be mah secoority officer”.
“security what now?”
“emm, Garil...sir?”
“good lad, good lad.”
“ah here, he must be a bit touched”, muttered another slayer.
Storrisson’s head whipped around.
“Touched eh? Seein’ as yoo like touchin so much, you can be ships cabin boy.”
“Cabin what? now look ere-”
“touch me again and I’ll make you wish you were-”
“SECURITY OFFICER GARIL! If this ‘ere fellow even looks at me funny, clamp ‘im in irons!”
“AYE AYE SIR”, grinned Garil.
Some laughed, some shifted uneasily on their feet, unsure of this new figure.
“I can”, said a young slayer confidently.
“I can sir!”.
“Excellent. Continue!”

Storrisson listened as the young slayer outlined the attack plan. He pointed out three key points which had been identified in the fortress, two towers and a section of wall. The slayer unit had volunteered for the worst job, or the best job based on your point of view. They were to guard one of the battering rams, then make a suicide charge on their target tower. Another young slayer told him of the Crypt Horrors within, and how they had beaten the slayers back with heavy losses on both sides during their last attempt at taking the city. 

“Have any of ye actually killed onythin’ since ye took up doomseekin?”
“Ah’ didnae think so, not enough scars among ye to cover mah left buttock. That’s allri’ lads, ye’ll get yer chances today. Each and every one o ye.” 

Storrisson gazed at the enemy walls, watching as the ranks of undead and ghouls jostled against each other. He could feel his dwarfhood growing in anticipation of the battle. He pulled an axe from it’s sheath on his back and held both it and his hook straight out.
“Yes sir?”, said came a downtrodden voice, “aww jeez, is that what I think it is?” as he turned to face Storrisson. “Seriously?”
“Axe for hook, swiftly now!”
Cabin boy unscrewed the hook, and screwed the axe back in, in it’s place..
“Mark my words, I’m going to have one of their skulls over my fireplace aboard my new vessel when I return home”, said Storrisson as he pointed with his newly attached axehand at the Crypt Horrors.

Morbius gazed down at the dwarf lines. He was untroubled. Most of the dwarves from the previous assault now manned the ramparts beside their former enemies. Only the orange-haired dwarven berserkers could not be cajoled to stand up and serve. Stubborn even in death, it seemed. Perhaps it was something in the axes they had chained to their wrists that vexed the spell of awakening. Something for later study.

Although, even with the newly undead dwarves to bolster the defence, the numbers under his command were dwindling. It had been a hard march to slip his force past the dwarven blockade and then outwit the armies that attempted to stop him reaching the ogres keep. Only the sheer tenacity of the dwarven pursuit allowed them to reach him and lay siege. That assault had been thrown from the walls, but on the eve of victory a second dwarven army had arrived to oust him. 
Blast the dwarves and their halls for all time would have been a polite translation of the Nehekharan curses that issued from Morbius’ cracked lips.

As the liche pondered the dwarven assault began.

The familiar sound of the dwarf hold horn blared, echoing across the valley. Dwarf troops on all sides of the fortress roared and charged forwards. Storrisson could see the other band of slayers in the west climb over the walls, which were empty of defenders. The unit of warriors with them did not fare as well. During their charge rocks pelted them, but the dwarves could see no one on the battlements to throw the rocks! Their ladders hooked over the crenellations of the south west tower, and as the dwarves were clambering up the ladders they were swarmed by ghostly apparitions. Some dwarves immediately died of shock and fell from their perches, while others moved their booted feet to the sides of the ladder and slid down as fast as possible. They knew there was nothing they could do against a foe such a this.

 To the east the battering rams lumbered forwards, Storrisson knew it would take time for them to reach the walls. 

“RIGHT LADS!”, yelled Storrisson, “LAST ONE IN’S A RUDDY RATLING!”.
They didn’t need cajoling, they had worked themselves into a frenzy over the last hour. Headbutting each other, drawing their blood with blade edges. They charged at the tower he pointed at, screaming incoherently. Some of them started to climb the walls using the piercing hooks on the back of their axe heads, others used ladders. Storrisson flung his grapple over the battlements and started climbing towards the slavering Crypt Horrors.

With a howl of despair the spirit host guarding the South West tower was finally despatched by a dour looking dwarf carrying a glowing hammer. With the banishment of the host the dwarves began to clamber over the ramparts with nothing now to stop them. They leapt down the inner walls and thundered down staircases as they sought to follow their lord as he charged across the corpse strewn courtyard. Sensing the danger the liche climbed to the top of the walls and with a curse he unleashed searing bolts of black fire at the figure. The oily blackness was, for a moment, blasted away by the light from the dwarf’s hammer, but it spilled over and beyond it and where it met flesh it sizzled and spat. The dwarf roared and sank to his knees, and a gasp went up from the throng as they saw their leader fall. The attack began to falter.

 Morbius grinned widely and prepared to pour more black death into the screaming dwarf. As he began to recite the spell, a second attack demanded his most immediate attention. The dwarf ram had finally found a weak spot and the entire East wall shook and cracked, with the Southern section giving way entirely carrying away it’s defenders with it. It was at that moment the dwarf slayers burst through the doors from the North East tower and into the ghouls beyond. The carnage was horrendous, with slayers beheading slavering ghouls even as they were disembowelled by the stinking claws of the grave feeders. Several combats sent both ghoul and slayer over the sides to mutual doom on the rocks below. Among the spraying blood and viscera a single dwarf poked his pudgy finger at the vampire, Thomas, who had barely had time to draw his sword before charging the impudent dwarf.

It was not Thomas’ finest hour. In his haste to kill the dwarf he managed to slip on a pool of gore as he swung to decapitate the slayer. (Morbius later thought a little less showmanship and a little more looking where one was putting one’s feet might have been in order.) He landed hard on his rump, but thankfully did not have to endure the humiliation for long as the dwarf’s axe neatly sent his head spinning over the side to land with a wet thump on the packed earth before bouncing off into a pile of decimated skeleton warriors.

The combat raged on, both sides ruining the other. Eventually only the peg-legged dwarf
remained on the rampart, his arms red up the shoulders, but the ghouls, now leaderless, hissed and grew wary of the flashing axes. As one they turned and scuttled down the walls and into the sandy dune grass as the light began to fade.

Incredibly, unbelievably, this one dwarf had undone all of Morbius’ grand scheming with nothing more than a pair of axes and a refusal to simply die. The liche snarled, seeing the rest of the dwarf forces making their way across the courtyard now their lord had regained his feet, waving away those trying to help him up. Incensed, he met the slayers gaze, and the two took the measure of the other. Morbius called down to the dwarf.   

“I have decided, my good dwarf, that you are going to live forever.” 

With that, he faded away into the gathered twilight.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Map - Year 7, Turn 6

The End approaches...

The warriors of chaos and the Bretonnians both stood as the world awaits news of the Vampire's coup. In the far north the rattle of bones is heard. The omens are good as the deadites march unhindered into the old Beastman capital.

Macdanalus, Scrivener to the King

Crucially the Vampire Counts now hold 5 capitals. Enough for victory in the campaign.

Only the Dwarfs can prevent the Liche from seizing the Imperial Crown and Lordship on the Sundered Isles. The Dwarf army in Shattered Stone Bay force marches down to help push through the siege of the Great Ogre Hall. 30 troops are lost on the long march south. 

The Last battle
Attacker: 2 separate Dwarf armies (A) Survivors of the last battle - same list; (B) The force marching army - 470pts (normal army selection rules) Attacker can buy new siege equipment and loses old siege equipment - total is 470 + surviving value of the first army

Defender: Surviving Vampire Counts troops. Defender gets new siege equipment equal to the value of the surviving troops and loses old siege equipment

- models with lost wounds are restored to full wounds e.g. characters, monstrous infantry and war machines - new units disappear, e.g. zombies, and units cannot start with more models than in their original army list.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Map - Year 7, Turn 5

History of the Sundered Isles – The Forty Fourth Year of the Second Age. Macdanalus, Scrivener to the King. The Seventh Year and Fifth Campaign Month of the Great War. 

The Undead manoeuvring continued apace as their armies seized Avelorn (J10) and Har Ganeth (J15) on Kinsblood Isle. Far to the north the lone army of Undeath crossed the bridge into Norslatch and grabbed the razed villages of Brayherd (C10). They were now within sight of the old Beastman throne (B11) and the Heart of the Dark. Over on Smith’s Isle the Liche Lord (G16) cautiously moved his troops into the lair of the Necromancer (H16). The Averland army moved north to Ostland (F15) while the southern fleet moved up to the Black Pillar (H14)

The Bretonnian King pondered his next move from within the castle of Western Elswood (C14). It was clear the savage horde of monsters, madmen and mutants outside the walls intended to starve them out. So far they were holding out amidst the deprivation and hardship. So far! But how long could they remain loyal to the Lady. In his dreams he could hear the laughter of dark gods.

Communication was restored and the Bretonni forces went back on the march. The garrison on Asur’s Rest rode out of the Lost City to seize the mysterious Glowing Crater and its fortress (F9) from the Undead. Meanwhile, with their victory celebrations complete, the Bretonnian armies moved out of Mousillon to garrison at Castle Drakenhof (C3) and Castle Templehof (D4).
Their Dwarf allies continued to mop up on Norslatch.

Dwarf troops marched south from the Lost City to capture Shambletown (G9) and Shattered Stone Bay (H8) and west to capture Horrok’s Gap (F6) after a long forced march – sadly 40 brave Dwarfs died on the march. The Dwarf army entering Shattered Stone Bay was greeted by the sight of a raging sea battle as the two Dwarf fleets moored in the straits were attacked by a ghost fleet arriving from the west. The Dwarfs suffered badly in the early exchanges and fully half their grand fleet was destroyed. In the end it was pure Dwarf belligerence and attrition that won the day. Admiral Grungni Ironjaw himself boarded the lead ghost ship in a dramatic final conflict and cast the Vampire captain into the briny deeps. The Dwarfs hold Shattered Stone Bay.

The Dwarf expedition to Norslatch was not yet at an end. The victors of the battle for Red River moved north to conquer the Rock of Blood (C2). Meanwhile the army at Wolf Crag (E2) boarded ship east to Mousillon (D3) while the second fleet waited in port. The army on Dolmen Isle continued its march south into Southern Morswald (G3).

The Slayer army in Direbogs (I6) force marched south to attack the Goblin stronghold at the Monoliths (K6).  The surprised Goblins were unprepared for the sheer ferocity of the Slayer assault and the entire garrison was wiped out following a quick siege. Only 50 Slayers survived the crazy assault. Every goblin was killed - they didn’t think it too many. No, they didn’t think it enough!

Finally, the Dwarfs marched singing out of the Tusk toward the ancient Great Hall (I7) of the Ogres. They had fought many grim battles for the Ogre’s throne in the last few years. Now it was the Undead that controlled its power. It would be a legendary conflict with the fate of a continent in the balance.

Conflict at the Great Hall
Dwarfs are attempting to storm the city walls and take the Ogre throne from the Undead.

Attacker: 1,200 Dwarfs
Defender: 1,250 Vampire Counts

Siege Rules


  • Dwarfs lose 300 Slayers assaulting the goblin stronghold of the Monoliths (K6)
  • Dwarfs lose 40 troops on a forced march to Horrok’s Gap
  • Dwarfs lose their 2nd fleet in a naval engagement with the Undead at Shattered Stone Bay
  • Undead lose their 1st fleet in a naval engagement with the Dwarfs at Shattered Stone Bay

  • Undead seize Avelorn (J10) from the Dwarfs – village
  • Undead seize Har Ganeth (J15) from the Warriors of Chaos – razed village
  • Undead seize Brayherd (C10) from the Bretonnians – razed village
  • Undead seize Black Fire Coast (H16) from the Warriors of Chaos - necropolis
  • Bretonnians seize the Glowing Crater (F9) from the Undead – fortress
  • Dwarfs seize Shambletown (G9) from the Undead - village
  • Dwarfs seize Shattered Stone Bay (H8) from the Undead - village
  • Dwarfs seize Horrok’s Gap (F6) from the Undead - fortress
  • Dwarfs seize the Rock of Blood (C2) from the Undead – fortress
  • Dwarfs seize the Monoliths (K6) from the Goblins – fortress

Victory Condition = 5 thrones

  • Vampire Counts have 4 thrones; 
  • Bretonnians have 3 thrones; 
  • Dwarfs have 2 thrones; 
  • Warriors of Chaos have 1 throne

Monday, May 20, 2013

Map - Year 7, Turn 4

History of the Sundered Isles – The Forty Fourth Year of the Second Age. Macdanalus, Scrivener to the King. The Seventh Year and Fourth Campaign Month of the Great War.

Communications had broken down and some dark fugue had come over the Bretonnian forces. The forces on Norslatch and Asur’s Rest held close to their basecamps. Meanwhile the errantry force holed up in the fortress of Western Elswood held its breath as the forces of the primordial annihilator marched up to the walls. The screaming Norscan horde settled in to starve out the grim defenders.

The Siege of Western Elswood (C14)
Besieged: 2,380 Bretonnian troops led by their King
Besieging force: 3,964 Norse troops led by their King

There was no respite for the Undead on Norslatch. The Undead 6th army and the Dwarf 4th army clashed on the plains to the east of the Red River. The Dwarfs barrelled their way relentlessly through the Ghoul defenders and all the way to the mouth of the River. Not a single Undead survived the onslaught. It was a massacre. The other Dwarf banner in Mousillon (D3) marched in to occupy Wolf Crag (E2) where it was joined by the Dwarfs two northern fleets.

Elsewhere the Dwarfs moved to reorganise. The banner on Dolmen’s Island moved south to North Morswald (F3) while the Slayers moved south to Direbogs (I6) and the site of the old Ogre massacre.

The banner on Asur’s Rest (G8) split into three smaller banners while the combined southern fleet steamed east to control the strait (H8) between Asur’s Rest and Kanesdue Isle. In response the Undead fleet sailed south to Rockguts (H7).

Things went less well for the Dwarfs at The Tusk (I8). A communications breakdown prevented the Dwarfs from redeploying and this allowed the nearby Undead army to march unimpeded into the old Ogre capital (I7). On Smith’s Isle the banner in Ostermark (G16) was delayed by torrential rain although the army in Talabheim (G14) marched east to take Averland (G15)

The time had arrived and the Liche made his move. In one fell swoop the Undead forces moved in to occupy the old High Elf capital of Lothern (I11) and the old Dark Elf capital of Naggarond (I15).

…and far to the north a lone Undead banner marched north into the desolate Plain of Ruin (C11)

Casualties300 Undead destroyed by Dwarfs at the Red River (D2)
50 Dwarfs destroyed by Undead at the Red River (D2) 

Dwarfs take the Red River from the Undead (D2) – barren
Dwarfs take Wolf Crag from the Undead (E2) – village

Undead take the Great Hall from the Dwarfs ((I7) – Ogre capital and throne
Undead take Lothern from the Dwarfs ((I11) – razed High Elf capital and throne
Undead take Naggarond from the Warriors of Chaos (I15) – razed Dark Elf capital and throne
Undead take the Plain of Ruin (C11) from the Bretonnians – barren
Undead take Averland from the Warriors of Chaos (G15) razed village

Map - Year 7, Turn 3 continued

 Dwarf and Bretonnian kingdoms are officially allied.

The Bretonnian garrison at the Lost City (G8) have ceded control of that capital to the Dwarf army.
Meanwhile, the combined Dwarf and Bretonnian armies have crushed the Undead defenders of Mousillon and gained control of the Undead capital. A Bretonnian flag has been planted upon the top of the tallest tower.

The Undead lost 300 troops in the initial battle and then a further 150 troops were picked off as stragglers in isolated groups as the undead retreat in disarray. The remaining 300 undead troops regroup at the Red River (D2).

50 Dwarfs and 50 Bretonnians are rumoured to have died in the attack.

Word from The Tusk.
The Dwarfs have been defeated by the armies of undeath. Though initially going well the Dwarfs fighters found themselves outmanoeuvred by a flanking attack from flying Vargheists and Terrorgheists. Despite the defeat it was an even battle and a horde of Ghouls was destroyed by the Dwarfs rear guard action.

Dwarfs lose 300 troops and retreat behind the walls of the Tusk (banner has 1,200 troops left)
Vampire Counts lose 250 troops (1,250 left)

Another entry is made in the Book of Grudges.

The Bretonnian Errantry force has been smashed from the Cauldron of the Norse. The Slaves to Darkness blackened the ground with their sheer numbers as they swept down from the mountains. Heroic indeed was the defiance of the Bretonni but not even the greatest of heroes can stand forever against the tide.

And so it was that after four hours of constant battle the King sounded the call to retreat.
The surviving Bretonnian forces retreated into Western Elswood (C14) to nurse their wounds behind the walls of the forest castle.

The Norse have retaken the Cauldron.

Warriors lose 200 troops, Bretonnians lose 300 troops.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Map - Year 7, Turn 3

History of the Sundered Isles – The Forty Fourth Year of the Second Age. Macdanalus, Scrivener to the King. The Seventh Year and Third Campaign Month of the Great War

The Bretonnian King surveyed his troops for perhaps the last time. His scouts reported over four
thousand Norse warriors fast approaching and his brave Knights would be heavily outnumbered.
This glorious errantry war to free the Sundered Isles from the blight of Chaos could yet end in
disaster. The entire expeditionary force could yet be cast into the sea. Could the prophecy be

But if they won…ah what glory! To triumph while outnumbered by the forces of darkness and to hurl
the monsters back into hell… that would be a fine tale to tell. Legend would remember they fought
outnumbered against the forces of hell and spat in their eye. That was what mattered.

The anvils beat in tune while his men readied for the battle. In the far distance he could hear war
drums. They were coming.

The Battle of One Hundred Heroes
Location: The Cauldron (C15)

Attacking forces (4,164pts):
  • Warriors of Chaos 1st army (1,500pts lead by the King)Army has no max points for characters (but must have 25% core), general has +1 Ld and has a free magic item taken from the Warriors of Chaos Book (including special character magic items)
  • Warriors of Chaos 2nd army (1,500pts)
  • Warriors of Chaos 3rd army (1,164pts)
Defending forces (2,60pts):
  • Bretonnian 1st army (1,400pts lead by the king) Army has no max points for characters (but must have 25% core), general has +1 Ld and has a free magic item taken from the Bretonnian Book (including special character magic items)
  • Bretonnian 2nd army (1,280pts)

Far to the west the storm-clouds were gathering around Mousillon (D3). The two Dwarven armies
had landed and were waiting camped outside the walls while their siege engines wrecked the walls
and reduced them to pulp. Meanwhile two Bretonnian armies had marched down from Castle
Drakenhof (C3) and Castle Templehof (D4) and were deployed just one mile from the city. The air
was pregnant with tension as everyone waited to see what would happen – and to see what sides
would be picked.

The Battle of Three Armies
Location: Mousillon (D3)

Vampire Forces (750pts):
  • Vampire Counts 6th army (750pts)
Dwarf forces (2,615pts):
  • Dwarf 1st army (1,460pts)
  • Dwarf 4th army (1,155pts)
 Bretonnian forces (2,987pts):
  • Bretonnian 4th army (1,487pts)
  • Bretonnian 5th army (1,500pts)

There was more drama as far to the south the Bretonnian army garrisoned in the Lost City (G8)
spotted the advance of a Dwarven force marching from the Twins (G7). The Bretonnian commander
ordered his personal standard bearer out to discover the Dwarf intentions.

Encounter at the Lost City
Location: The Lost City of the Old Ones (G8)

Bretonnian forces:
  • Bretonnian 3rd army (1,500pts)
Dwarf forces:
  • Dwarf 3rd army (1,500pts)

The old Liche was not to be underestimated and he ordered his troops south from Shattered
Stone Bay (H8) to conquer the old Ogre lands and defy the bearded ones. The Dwarf army in Gash
Kardak (H9) was ordered back to make a stand at the Tusk (I8) and it would be there at the edge of
Dreaming Wood where the two armies would finally met.

Siege of the Tusk
Location: The Tusk (I8)

Vampire Counts forces:
  • Vampire 5th army (1,500pts)
Dwarf forces:
  • Dwarf 2nd army (1,500pts)

Meanwhile the Slayer army completed the mopping up operation on the Burning Isle(1) by seizing
the undead controlled villages on the Coast of Claws (H6) while the two southern Dwarf fleets
rendezvoused off the coast of Rockguts (H7). Finally, the Dwarf army on Dolmen Isle redeployed to
Licheburg (E3).

Not to be outdone the Vampire Counts maintained their own campaign of conquest as undead
forces moved to seize Ostermark (G16) on Smith’s Isle and the Forest of Eyes (D11) on the Isle
of Mists. The Undead also captured Mournwood (I14) using a naval assault from Caledor. Less
successful was a foolish assault on the Elven held Black Pillar (H14). Three hundred undead troops
were destroyed in the bloody repulse. Finally, the undead fleets redeployed to Nordland (E13),
Mournwood (I14) and the Twins (G7) The Vampire army in I13 moves west to J12 to capture the ruined fortress from the Dwarfs.


Territorial Changes

Dwarfs seize the Coast of Claws (H6) from the Vampires – village

Vampires seize Mournwood (I14) from the Warriors of Chaos – barren
Vampires seize Ostermark (G16) from the Warriors of Chaos – village
Vampires seize the Forest of Eyes (D11) from the Bretonnians – village

Vampires seize (J12) from the Dwarves – fortress


Vampire 7th army loses 300 troops

(1) Except for that Goblin fortress – cough, cough – slayers – cough, cough

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Map - Year 7, Turn 2

History of the Sundered Isles – The Forty Fourth Year of the Second Age. Macdanalus, Scrivener to the King. The Seventh Year and Second Campaign Month of the Great War

The Bretonnian King and his two armies (C14) swept arrogantly into the Cauldron (C15) from
Western Elswood. The Norse capital had been abandoned to its fate and the Bretonni quickly moved
to secure the city from the inevitable counter-attack. The Norse King waited silently in the hills to
the South East (D16) of the Cauldron as the Bretonnians entered his capital and seat of power. He
had spent the month reorganising his three armies to best advantage. His men were restless and
wanted to attack. Not yet. Soon, very soon… The Norse ship sailed up the coast from Kvellig (D14) to Western Elswood (C14).

On Asur’s Rest it was the same story as the Bretonni marched in unopposed from the Giant’s Bed
Mountains (F7) to take the Lost City of the Old Ones (G8) from the Undead, a city of great wonder
yet also great horror. The conquering march of the chromatic army had not finished yet and their
knights marched west from the Iron Hills (C4) and the Grey Mountains (C5) to seize the Undead
fortresses of Castle Drakenhof (C3) and Castle Templehof (D4). The wall of bone was breached.

The Dwarfs own march of conquest continued in earnest. The 4th army in Licheburg (E3) and the 1st
army in Northern Morswald boarded ships at Licheburg and sailed north to the coast off Mousillion
(D3) while the 5th army in Licheburg marched east to seize Swartzhafen (F4) from the Undead. The
long awaited amphibious assault also began, with Dawi forces (G6) pouring ashore on Asur’s Rest to
capture the villages surrounding the twins (G7). The raucous journey of the drunken Slayer pirates
finally ended to the relief of the captain. The orange haired emos were deposited ashore at the old
Ogre graveyard of Direbogs (I6). Finally, the army on Kanesdue marched north from the Tusk to take
Gask Kardak from the Undead (H9).

Reeling from the loss of six provinces, the Liche King made his moves. The counter-attack began with Undead troops shambling ashore on the Isle of Mists to capture the Herding Plain (E12) from the Bretonnians. The Undead abandoned Asur’s Rest for now and used the fleet sailing in to Shattered Stone Bay (H8) to pontoon across to Kanesdue Isle (K8) on the southern shore of the bay. The third fleet deposited its cargo of ghouls ashore to seize Nagarythe (I13), before sailing back to Caledor (H13), where the Caledor garrison immediately boarded ship. The Undead mop-up of Smith’s Isle continued with the King’s army capturing Ostland (F15). Scouting troubles prevented the other army in Talabheim (G14) from moving.

Territorial Changes
Bretonnians take the Cauldron from the Warriors (C15) – Warriors of Chaos capital
Bretonnians take the Lost City of the Old Ones from the Undead (G8) – Legendary and ancient capital – razed.
Bretonnians take Castle Drakenhof from the Undead (C3) – fortress and bridge
Bretonnians take Castle Templehof from the Undead (C3) – fortress

Dwarfs take Swartzhafen from the Undead (F4) – village
Dwarfs take The Twins from the Undead (G7) – village
Dwarfs take Gash Kardak from the Undead (H9) – barren

Undead take the Herding Plain from the Bretonnians (E12) – village
Undead take Nagarythe from the Warriors (I13) – barren
Undead take Ostland from the Warriors (F15) - barren

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Map - Year 7, Turn 1

 Macdanalus, Scrivener to the King. The Seventh Year and First Campaign Month of the Great War.

On Asur’s rest the Bretonnians swept down from the Challenge stone (E7) to seize the Twins (F7)
from the Undead. Back on Norslatch they signalled the invasion of the dead king’s realm. All did not
go to plan. The Necromancers’ portents of terror had created a pall over the Grey Mountains (C5)
which prevented the army from moving. More successful was the Montfort (B5) battalion which
marched into the Iron Hills (C4) and burned the Blood Knights’ temple to the ground while securing
control of the province.

The Dwarf invasion came from the south and the west. Both armies in Krag Bryn (F2) stormed
into Licheburg (E3) trailed by their two fleets offshore. The Straddlebrook expeditionary force (F5)
boarded ship and set sail for Karak Kadrin (G6) while the Karaz-a-Karak (H3) clansmen force marched north through South Morswald (G3) and into North Morswald (F3). The brutal march put paid to 40 Dwarf troops. On Kanesdue the Dwarf 2nd army marched out of the old Ogre capital (I7) and into the Tusk (I8) while the Slayers from Dreary Wood (J7) moved into the Great Hall (I7) to try board ship. Unfortunately localised storms prevented the ship and its ginger haired crew of psychopaths sailing out of port.

Vampire Counts response
The dead King scrambled to respond to the Dwarf and Bretonnian invasion. He ordered the army in
Bloodpeak (H10) west into Shambletown (G9) to protect the Lost City while the fleet in Bloodpeak
was sent south west into Gash Kardak (H9) to cut off the Dwarf invasion from Kanesdue Isle. The
Caledor (H13) fleet and army sailed south east into the coast off Nagarythe (I13) while the army
in Bastion Hills (H12) marched into Caledor (H13). With his diplomacy in tatters the undead king
suffered mutiny from within his own army. While the mutiny was crushed it prevented the army
moving out of Talabheim (G14). The king then split the Talabheim army into two smaller banners.

To the north the Altdorf (F14) army quietly boarded ship and was last seen off the coast of Nordland
(E13). The army in Mousillon (D3) prepared its defences for the coming siege.

War on the Foot
After enduring six months of devastating chill and one month of continuous bombardment the
Norse Lord (C15) finally got the signal he had been waiting for. The Kvellig (D14) relief force was
on its way led by Krogar Fell-Hand himself. The Cauldron itself had been reduced to rubble by the bombardment and was now all but useless as a defensive position. It was time to quench his thirst
with Bretonnian blood. He ordered his armies to prepare to sally forth.

Outside the walls the cavalry hordes of the Bretonni looked like a sea of bright colour and glittering
metal over the blackened and cursed earth (C15). The scouts reported that Duc Manfred had almost
arrived with his army from Western Elswood (C14). Apparently it had been a harsh month with 120
brave men succumbing to starvation. It was almost time…

To the south-east the Norse plans had gone awry. Their army in Aesling (D16) had scouting
difficulties and trouble with mercenaries. Although 100 troops were recruited to the banner they
would not be able to arrive in time for the second battle of the Cauldron…

Territorial Changes
Bretonnians seize The Twins (F7) from the Vampire Counts – village
Bretonnians seize the Iron Hills (C4) from the Vampire Counts – temple is destroyed

Dwarfs seize the Tusk (I8) from the Vampire Counts – fortress
Dwarfs seize North Morswald (F3) from the Vampire Counts – village
Dwarfs seize Licheberg (E3) from the Vampire Counts – village

Casualties and Reinforcements
Bretonnian 2nd army loses 120pts to starvation
Warriors of Chaos 3rd army recruits 100pts of mercenaries
Dwarf 1st army loses 40pts to forced march

The second battle of the Cauldron (known in later years as ‘The Crimson Fields’)

Bretonnian forces (2,880pts):
Bretonnian 1st army (led by the King) – 1,500pts
Bretonnian 2nd army – 1,380pts

Chaos forces (2,940pts):
Warriors of Chaos 1st army (led by the King) – 1,440pts
Warriors of Chaos 2nd army – 1,500pts

Armies containing the King can spend unlimited points on characters but must still have a minimum
of 25% on core. The King gets a free magic item (heirloom) from the magic item section of his army
book that does not count to the total points of the army, or to the maximum he can spend on magic
items. Kings are +1 Leadership (or +1 Weapon Skill if already Leadership 10).

Monday, February 18, 2013

Map - Year 7, Spring Spells

Betrayed and bruised, but fuelled by an aching bitterness, the Liche ordered his magical defences.
Gifted with the power of raw magic from his new alliance with the northern warriors of chaos
and their dark gods, his coven of necromancers brought this raw magic into a deadly coalescence,
bending the laws of nature and spewing a vortex of chaos over the Eerie Downs (E5). Next, the
coven unleashed a debilitating plague of nightmares and waking qualms of terrifying intensity over
the Grey Mountains (C5).

Far to the east the sorcerer lords of chaos invoked the power of grandfather Nurgle. Papa Nurgle
blessed Northern Elswood (C14) with a beautiful and colourful rot. Four months’ worth of Brettonian
supplies immediately decay and are destroyed.

The Dwarves reputation for weak magical prowess was once again borne out as their attempt to
restore life and abundance to Mousillon (D3) surprisingly failed.

Finally, the storm of magic roiled west and settled over Chrace (H11).

Spell effects (all last for the campaign year)

Chaos Void is over the Eerie Downs (E5)
  • Any banner or fleet moving in is automatically destroyed

Portents of Terror is over the Grey Mountains (C5)
  • Any force in the tile must roll 4+ on D6 or be trapped in the tile for the turn

Rot is over Northern Elswood (C14)
  • Any baggage that enters the tile is automatically destroyed

Friday, February 15, 2013

Map - Year 7, Espionage


The plans had been in motion for years. The Dwarf operatives based in the Great Wall on Rusty Plain (G2) and the world renowned operatives of Couronne moved into action quickly once the signal came down. The Dawi spies wiped the Vampire operatives from the map in a single night of clean yet thorough destruction. At least it was almost thorough…   

A single Lahmian spy intercepted orders being delivered to the Straddlebrook (F5) expeditionary force which provides vague information about troop numbers and movements.

Meanwhile, the Dawi had been perfecting their zombie impersonation techniques. Fortunately Dwarfs have a high tolerance for poor personal hygiene. While some spies vanish without trace the Dwarfs gradually learn a great deal about the movements and size of three separate Undead armies.
The Bretonnians moved quickly to throw the Undead forces on Norslatch into disarray. In a dawn raid led by the heroes Jacques Crow and Jean Charpentier, the Bretonnians caught the Blood Knights of Iron Hills (C4) while they were sleeping in their sarcophagi. Not a single vampire survived and the entire banner is effectively destroyed for this campaign year. Charpentier alas was last seen falling from a cliff while wrestling with Valek the leader of the Blood Knights. His body was never found.  The assassins sent against the Vampire capital were also successful. A senior Liche was destroyed by lord Flash-hart while preparing an equinox spell. Flash-hart later escaped the citadel after a daring carriage chase through ghoul town.

The Chaos worshippers were better prepared for the Bretonnian black ops and only a single assassin was able to outwit the Norse agents and breach the walls of the Cauldron. A few troops died but the damage was contained.

The Norse were less well prepared for the band of Bretonnian saboteurs that attacked Kvellig (D14). The saboteurs poisoned the fortress food stores destroying all baggage in the province. They also set fire to the fortress causing immense damage and killing many people. Kvellig is razed to the ground though the banner is unaffected and the fleet escapes just in time.  

Game effects (in the order shown – I randomised)

Vampire Counts temple banner in the Iron Hills (C4) is destroyed.
Vampire Counts banner in Mousillon (D3) loses 250 troops.
Warriors of Chaos banner in the Cauldron (C15) loses 60 troops.

All baggage in Kvellig (D14) is destroyed.
The fortress at Kvellig (D14) is razed.

Dwarfs must reveal to the Vampire Counts the point value of the Straddlebrook expeditionary force (Banner in F5) and must also reveal to the Vampire Counts where the banner and fleet in Straddlebrook (F5) intend to go during the first campaign month. Then Vampires must reveal to the Dwarfs the remaining point value of their banners in Mousillon (D3), Bloodpeak (H10) and Caledor (H13) and must also reveal where these banners and their fleets are going to move during the first campaign month.

Spring Spells
  • Vampire Counts: Chaos Void, Portents of Terror
  • Bretonnians: Na
  • Warriors:  Rot
  • Dwarfs: Abundance

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Map - Year 7, Deployment

As dawn broke on the Isle of Smiths a rider spurred his mount onward over the low hills and into the pasture land beyond. The ruins of the human town was the rider's goal, there to convey news of the most base of treacheries to his master.

For a day after hearing the reports from the West, Morbius quietly seethed. 

Honour, honour the humans and dwarves rattled on about. Honour the dwarves had spoken of as he gave them the ogre's fortresses. Honour was the word of the day when his assassins had sunk the drow ships on Norslatch. Granted, they had given the humans a greater headache after being marooned, but the intention had been to help. Overall.

Eventually, Morbius rose and gave a great sigh. Perhaps it was time to find a new friend. One that did not harp on about honour so much. He looked out the shattered window at the silent ranks of his undead followers, patiently awaiting his will.

"Ultimately, one supposes, this is what comes of treating with the living." Morbius spoke aloud, to nobody in particular.

As one, his entire army broke from it's reverie, pivoted on the spot in perfect unison, and began the long march West. All but the rider, who now had another message to deliver.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Map - Year 6, Autumn Spells & Winter Quarters

Winter of the Sixth Year.

Autumn Spells
The Winds of Magic blew strongly at the Autumn equinox. From deep within the bowels of the
Cauldron, the Sorcerers of Chaos unleashed a reign of madness upon Hag Graef (H15). The entire
population, even the dead, became infected with a whirling madness and dances into the sea
never to be seen again. It is rumoured that 3,549 undead troops are lost in the disaster, while Hag
Graef itself is razed. However, rumours of the dead king’s demise were proven incorrect. From
dark Mousillon he sent out a call of heroes. Fully 1,000 long dead heroes are drawn to the vampire
capital to offer their services to the Liche. Meanwhile, the living peasants of the undead realm were
magically bolstered by the power of dark magic and 5 extra crowns of revenue were added to the
undead coffers. The Runelords attempted to blight the lands of the Norse but it was too much and
too far - they failed. Finally, the Damsels and Prophetesses of the Lady of the Lake completed a
ritual to restore life and beauty to Western Elswood (C14). The fortress recovers and the province
becomes part of the Bretonnian Kingdom – right on the edge of the Norse capital.

Winter Quarters
The siege of the Cauldron exacts its price over the long winter – but the defenders harden their
resolve and cling on over the winter. ‘Both’ the attacker and defender will have to spend 4 baggage
points if they want to keep their armies alive over winter. The Norse 3 rd army on Kinsblood,
the ‘fighting Graelings’, is unable to make proper winter quarters and is forced to hunker down into
a winter retreat. The ravages of the encroaching winter prove devastating and three quarters of the
army - 300 troops - freeze to death over the course of the winter.

Winter Events
As with every year the winter was accompanied by privation and despair for some and ale and song
for others. The Vampire kingdom had a particularly plentiful harvest which yielded 5 additional gold
crowns of revenue. However, the Bretonnian kingdom was wracked by a peasant revolt in protest
at high taxes. Crushing the revolt cost the Bretonnians 2 gold crowns of revenue. Meanwhile, the
destabilised Norse kingdom lost the fortress of Karond Kar (J14) to rebellion. Karond Kar declares
independence as a free elf kingdom in alliance with Arnheim (K14). Finally, the Dwarf people make a special tribute to the Dwarf ruler. Sadly the tribute is a miserly 1 gold crown of revenue. No one ever said Dwarfs were generous.

Territorial Changes

Bretonnians seize Western Elswood (C14) from the Warriors – Fortress (no longer razed)

Independents seize Karond Kar (J14) from the Warriors – Fortress

Hag Graef (H15) – undead village is razed

Political Power and Remaining Forces at end of Year Six
Note that razed settlements produce no revenue and are not included here.

Vampire Counts (3 capitals – holds tiebreaker):
  • 1 King
  • 2,500 Troops (including the call of heroes)
  • 0 Siege Battery
  • 3 Fleets
  • 1 Temple
Revenue: From capitals = 8; from other cities = 4; from fortresses = 8; from villages = 17; from bumper crop = 5; from plentiful harvest = 5
Total Revenue = 47

Dwarfs (3 capitals):
  • 0 King
  • 3,955 Troops
  • 1 Siege Battery
  • 3 Fleets
  • 1 Temple
Revenue: from capitals = 8; from other cities = 4; from fortresses = 2; from villages = 15; from mines = 4; from special tribute = 1
Total Revenue = 34

Bretonnians (2 capitals):
  • 1 King
  • 5,487 troops (700 troops need 4 baggage to be protected over winter)
  • 0 Siege Battery
  • 1 Fleet
  • 0 Temple
Revenue: from capitals = 8; from other cities = 4; from fortresses = 4; from villages = 16; from mines = 2; peasant revolt = (-2)
Total Revenue = 32

Warriors of Chaos (2 capitals):
  • 1 King
  • 2,924 troops (1,090 troops need 4 baggage to be protected over winter)
  • 1 Siege Battery
  • 1 Fleet
  • 0 Temple
Revenue: from capitals = 4; from other cities = 2; from fortresses = 2; from villages =6
Total Revenue = 14

Spending Revenue
I am trying to streamline things so from now on I have given a particular cost for buying baggage and
a particular cost for recovering razed settlements. See below for full costs:

  • Diplomatic Mission = 1 gold
  • Recruitment = 1 gold per 100pts of troops
  • Recovery = 1 gold to recover a village; 2 gold to recover a fortress; 3 gold to recover a city
  • Construction = 3 gold and 1 timber per fleet; 2 gold and 1 timber per siege battery; 5 gold and 1 timber to upgrade a village to a fortress; 10 gold and 1 timber to upgrade a barren to a fortress; 15 gold and 1 timber to upgrade a village to a city; 3 gold and 1 timber to build a great wall.
  • Baggage = 1 gold per 4 baggage
  • Espionage = 1 gold per Assassin; 1 gold per D6 spies; 1 gold per saboteur; 1 gold per Agent

Don’t forget to deploy your banners and fleets – the king and any siege batteries (max 1 per army)
are assigned to an army during deployment. Baggage is also assigned to banners at deployment.
Banners have a minimum size of 500pts and a maximum size of 1500pts.