Friday, March 21, 2014

Call of Cthulhu LCG

Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game (formerly the Call of Cthulhu Collectible Card Game) is a card game produced and marketed by Fantasy Flight Games. It is based on the fiction of the Cthulhu Mythos, primarily the writings of H. P. Lovecraft and Chaosium's Call of Cthulhu role-playing game. In 2008, Fantasy Flight moved the game over to its Living Card Game (LCG) format, which retains the deck-building aspect of collectible card games, but without the random distribution.

It shares art and characters with FFG's other Cthulhu Mythos products Arkham Horror and Elder Sign.

Players attach resources (taken from the cards in their hand) onto blank placeholder cards known as domains, later "draining" them by putting a drain counter on them to play various cards. Both players compete to complete stories by winning success tokens. Five success tokens wins a story; three stories wins the game. Players typically assign character cards to stories, to win struggles and gain these success tokens. Additionally, the first player to run out of cards to draw from loses the game, making deck destruction another potentially effective strategy.

There are eight factions in Call of Cthulhu, as well as "neutral" cards (light grey in color) that are not part of any faction. A card may only be played if a domain with that faction attached is drained (neutral cards can be paid for using any faction).

    The Agency: This "investigator" faction comprises the Blackwood Detective Agency, law enforcement agencies, and others involved in criminal justice. Its symbol is a badge, and its color is blue.
    Miskatonic University: This "investigator" faction represents the academic prowess of Lovecraft's fictional Miskatonic University, as well as other academic groups. Its symbol is a scroll, and its color is gold.
    The Syndicate: This "investigator" faction represents the underworld element of human society, including mobsters, killers and journalists. It mainly focuses on Danny O'Bannion's gang and its contacts. Its symbol is a dollar sign in a triangle and its color is dark brown.
    The Order of the Silver Twilight: This "investigator" faction is a later addition to the game and centers a secret cabal of leading politicians, charismatic socialites, persuasive civic leaders, and successful businessmen who must pass through successive ranks of occult initiation and ritual to emerge into the inner sanctum of the Order, there to pursue their quest for ultimate earthly - and unearthly - power. Its symbol is a trident in a cross, and its color is silver grey. Their name may be a play on The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.
    Cthulhu: This "mythos" faction includes Cthulhu himself, as well as his associated cultists and monsters (such as deep ones and shoggoths). Its symbol is a squid, and its color is green.
    Hastur: This "mythos" faction centers on Hastur, especially his King in Yellow aspect, as well as his worshippers and minions, largely human psychopaths and monstrous Byakhees, as well as werewolves. Its symbol is the Yellow Sign, and its color is yellow.
    Yog-Sothoth: This "mythos" faction centers on Yog-Sothoth, and the scholars who worship it, as well as various trans-dimensional beings including Nightgaunts and Star vampires; it also hosts several undead monsters. Its symbol is a key, and its color is purple.
    Shub-Niggurath: This "mythos" faction centers on Shub-Niggurath and the many, many monsters she is responsible for creating (notably Dark Young, ghouls, and Dholes). Its symbol is a goat's head, and its color is red.

We were able to play 3 games last night...
1. The Agency (Winner) vs. Cthulhu
2. The Order of the Silver Twilight vs. Miskatonic University (Winner)
3. The Syndicate vs. Yog-Sothoth (Winner)

The Order of the Silver Twilight is no match for the faculty of Miskatonic University

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

TSR's AD&D 2nd Edition BattleSystem Skirmish - Playtest

The Greyhawk Wars come to Tamilane.  Goblin scout occupy the ruins.
Saturday evening's game was our first run at TSR's BattleSystem Skirmish.  This is a bit of a change for our group's fantasy skirmish level game of choice has been GW's Lord of the Rings.    TSR's original BattleSystem game was aimed at army level battles.  Their Skirmish rules fill in a nice niche, where the battle might be too big to do in a traditional RPG combat, but are no where near a battle between armies.
A friendly ranger has warned the Froeghton militia -who now, after a hurried muster, advance on the ruins.

Are the goblins sleeping?

The force's of the Horned Society raiders are ready!  Goblin archers give themselves away with long range shots.

Capt Arak and a warrior priest lead the men through sporadic arrow fire.

A section of archers fires on goblins concealed in the ruins.  A mage awaits nervously, as the goblins in the tower move forward to engage.

The milita and warrior priest attack the ruins!

The melee at the ruins continues and casualties mount.

A brief melee occurs between the archers and goblin erupts.  A well placed sleep spell helps turn the tide against the Horned Society scouting force!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Revolting Peasants - JR

Here is another small contribution to the Blackwold Brigands (or perhaps some Archet townsfolk) for our LotR campaign. These miniatures are Old Glory's  Revolting Peasants with Sticks and Stones. They aren't the best miniatures but are a reasonable way to bolster numbers at ~$1.16 per miniatures (just watch out for shipping costs if you order from the manufacturer website).

I made a few modifications, swapping out clubs and rocks for spears, swords and daggers. I also added a couple shields.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

LotR's Arathorn - GF

Games Workshop's Arathorn model for Lord of the Rings. I think he'll be making an appearance in our games as a leader of the Blackwold Brigands. Maybe.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

LotR: Combe North Gate Playtest - GF, JR

Combe North Gate is a landmark within Archet Dale in Bree-land.

This location is a guarded gate between Archet Dale and Combe, where the only passage from Archet to the rest of the Middle-earth is as narrowest. The gate had been blocked by Blackwold brigands, letting nobody through.

Good Objective: Alert Combe of the Blackwold's plan to attack Archet. Two Good models must move off table behind the gate and fences.

Evil Objective: Prevent Good models from passing through to Combe.

Good Forces:
5 x Warrior of Minas Tirith with Bow
5 x Warrior of Minas Tirith with Sheild
6 x Warrior of Minas Tirith with Spear and Shield

Evil Forces (using orcs as sufficient brigand models weren't available):
8 x Mordor Orcs with Bow
8 x Mordor Orcs with Sword and Shield

The Battlefield featured a defended gate and several fences in the upper corner. The village of Combe lies beyond and this is where the forces of Good are headed.

Halbarad leads his melee troops forward while the bows provide cover fire. The Evil defenders wait patiently for the enemy to close. Orcs fire bows with little/no results. As with most of our LotR: SBG games, bows seem rather ineffective.

The Warriors of Minas Tirith and Halbarad reach the first line of defense. The orcs are clearly outmatched, but the added benefits of defending the obstacle helps spare a few lives.

Shagrat (using Arathorn proxy) reinforces the orc defenders and starts turning the tide against Good. Might points are spent liberally. Halbarad knows he cannot easily defeat Shagrat and keeps his eye on the objective. With a small group of warriors, Halbarad makes a dash up the hill towards Combe.

The orcs on the far left move towards the action in the middle of the battlefield in hopes of reinforcing the dwindling defenders.

Shagrat tries to chase down Halbarad but is too late. The hero and warrior of Minas Tirith dash past the last of the orc defenders to alert Combe of the impending attack on Archet.

Overall, a very enjoyable game. The heroes proved to be game-changing and at the end of the day, a priority roll or two made all the difference. Good game!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Bastogne Church Fail - GF

I was excited to finally receive the Bastogne Church ordered from Battlefront so long ago. I opened the package and found it had arrived broken with neither of the missing pieces inside the box. Ugh. Hopefully Battlefront will fix this sooner than later.


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Red Box Games: Robert of Carlisle Wall - DS

aka Sgt. Freiderich the Halberdier:  ready for battle.

Red Box Games is sculptor Tre Manor's fantasy miniatures company.  I first became aware of, and was impressed by, his work with his Reaper Miniatures.  I was really blown away by his own Red Box line. His previous work has really honed his crafting skills to his present level.  The figures are detailed, the casts are crisp and clean.  The are a little bit slighter than most "heroic scale" fantasy miniatures and will be noticeable standing next to even his own Reaper sculpts.  When I first got them I was a bit taken aback by this, and not sure how I felt about the scale.  After cleaning one up and getting some paint on it I decided:  these figures are great.  I like the realism and detail, and Tre Manor and his Red Box line are among my favorite figures.

Red Box Games does not have items numbers.  The miniatures pictured is from his Aenglish line (fantasy medieval humans) and is name/ID  is Robert of Carlisle Wall.  I received it as a part of a Kickstarter Red Box had going. 

The figure is going to represent Sgt. Freiderich the Halberdier in some fantasy rpg games.  The character was originally a follower for a paladin character of mine.  The model really fits the character as it is a grizzled, no nonsense veteran fighter.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

SAGA Vikings - GF

Up next, Vikings for SAGA!

Gripping Beast Warlord, 4 Hirdmen (Hearthguard), 4 Berserkers (Hearthguard), 8 Bondi (Warriors), 8 Bondi (Warriors).

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

LotR Barrow Wights - GF

 Barrow-wights are wraith-like creatures in J. R. R. Tolkien's world of Middle-earth, based on the Old Norse Draugr. Barrow refers to the burial mounds they inhabited and wight is a Middle English word for "living being" or "creature", especially "human being". It does not necessarily mean "spirit" or "ghost"; it is cognate to modern German "Wicht", meaning small mythical creatures (also "Wichtelmännchen"). Tolkien borrowed this concept from Norse mythology, see e.g. Waking of Angantyr and Hrómundar saga Gripssonar. The name Barrow-wight itself was first recorded in 1869 in the Eiríkr Magnússon and William Morris translation of Grettis saga, which features a fight with such a creature.

Evil spirits (perverted Maiar or possibly spirits of Orcs, fallen Avari, or evil Men) were sent to the Barrow-downs by the Witch-king of Angmar in order to prevent the restoration of the destroyed Dúnedain kingdom of Cardolan.

They animated the dead bones of the Dúnedain buried there, as well as older bones of Edain from the First Age which still were buried there.

After leaving Tom Bombadil, Frodo Baggins and company were trapped in the Barrow-downs, and nearly slain by a barrow-wight. It was mentioned in The Lord of the Rings Appendix A that Frodo was trapped in the cairn of the last prince of Cardolan; Merry's exclamation on waking from his trance suggests this. Frodo sliced off the wight's hand; then, when the wight extinguished the dim light in the cavern where the company was imprisoned, Frodo called upon Tom Bombadil, who expelled the wight from the barrow.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Kings of War - Lord of the Rings Style

Saturday night we tried a game of Mantic's Kings of War using some Lord of the Rings miniatures. Jim fielded Moria Goblins while Chris played Mordor Orcs. As with the other KoW game we've played, there was a lot of back and forth going on for the lead. In the end, however, it was Jim's Moria Goblins that came out with the win. Good game people!

Goblin Hero
Goblin Shaman
2 x Cave Trolls
3 x Wargs
1 x Moria Goblins with war drum
1 x Moria Goblins with bows
1 x Moria Goblins with spears

2 x Mordor Orcs with bows
1 x Mordor Orcs with sword and shield
1 x Mordor Warg Riders