Trapped somewhere in the past

Posted by  | Sunday, November 4, 2018  at 8:55 PM  

Last month was Spieltage 2018 in Essen. A gang of British tabletop gamers from Dorset attended with the purpose of purchasing lots of hot new board game releases. I was there to meet with old tabletop friends from across the years and make new acquaintances. In hall 6 were Games Workshop as well as Cubicle 7 who have licensed Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay for it’s 4th edition release. They are in the process of fulfilment for pre-orders and copies of the new rulebook were onhand. I had a nice chat with their staff about upcoming plans which in addition to the director’s cut rewrite for legendary campaign The Enemy Within, will include another module for Marienburg. This was my first chance to put my fingers on the limited edition embossed version which I have prepaid for my collection.

Towards the end of the fair weekend there were a ton of incoming messages and alerts hitting me about Mordheim interest from the community in my hometown of Poole. Firstly this reminded me that I needed to post here as it’s been over 3 years since the last MiM campaign phase ended. Secondly I keep meaning to include a reference to the public Dropbox account with my shared player aids contributions for this game we all adore.

Werekin folder is found here:
*MiM campaign player aids*

There is new terrain being created by members of the hobby community in my town and various captains are conspiring to raise enough gold crowns to hire swords for a campaign.

It’s too early to tell what exactly will be happening or whether I will put up my guilders to do the same. There are so many distractions yet we do have the fantastic new Entoyment Hobby Centre that has opened in my hometown and the temptation is always there to get back on the campaign trail.

Shades of decay

Posted by  | Thursday, August 6, 2015  at 1:22 AM  

When death falls upon the Free City of Marienburg, fractious citizens witness the exploits of apocalypse. The End Times have come. Renegade personalities clash in a fight for survival. In a city shattered and leaderless, rival outfits face off to stake their claim on Marienburg. Rich thieves in a safe place became dead men on a long rope.

For this years 5th annual Mordheim battle day it was originally my intention for the player's warbands to fight in a united front against a Plague Fleet spearheaded by the brothers Glött. Inevitably realising plan A* couldn't be orchestrated without a Nurgle general volunteering to lead a few thousand points worth of Chaos despoilers through my decaying port-cityscape we resorted to plan B.

*Oldhammer Nurgle fleetmasters apply herein and we may yet re-enact this.

The back up plan discussed with my conspirators Dan and Chris was to entertain ourselves with a series of two player battles by starting off with new warband lists. Veterans of our campaign have been playing the same gangs on and off for the last four years. The consensus was that most of us prefer to start afresh for this get together. With a bunch of new recruits joining rusty veterans for the weekend, I devised a simple map-based system of area control broken down into districts and boroughs.

Each of 16 wards or ghettos was represented with a different scenario and the players could agree between themselves which ones they wished to play, or randomise a scenario if they failed to agree, then move on to face another opponent based on current whereabouts on the Great Map.

A crude tagging system was employed to mark out victories with coloured spots determining which warbands were asserting their dominance over the city.

All of the games were staged in the loft flat my girlfriend and I have moved into. We've been lucky enough to find a place with adequate space in the spare room for my Marienburg table to be set up full-time. Yet as I write this a good chunk of my terrain collection is currently boxed up as I've just returned from another weekend event with the Oldhammer community! It's been a busy month for Mordheim activity and this years battle day featured 10 players.

João (Dwarf Rangers), Michelle (Strigany Gypsies), Chris (Skaven Warp-Engineers), Stu C (Norse Explorers), Stu W (Dark Elves), Phil (Ogre Maneaters), Bob (Fimir), Dawn (Dwarf Treasure Hunters), Enys (Sisters of Sigmars) & Dan (River Watch)

Witch Hunter General Dave made a brief guest appearance during the course of Saturday to say hi to the group. Another new face to Bournemouth Mordheimers was Kawe Weissi-Zadeh who visited during set up week with his goblins, trolls and some unreleased halflings. Kawe ended up missing the battles due to work commitments so we are planning another night for some games soon with a smaller group.

João and Bob grabbed some super snaps of the action through the day. My own photography featured here occasionally is not the best. João shot some excellent pics of the main Marienburg table terrain in my spare room. He was able to capture over 200 shots at Oldhammer Weekend whilst I was running participation games of Mordheim.

In addition to the main 6'x4' table, a second table 4'x4' was prepared in the living room by draping a Dreadfleet seascape mat across my (large enough to do this) coffee table to represent the Reiksmouth Estuary. With the excess terrain being supplied by João we had more than enough to create 10' worth of tabletop across the two boards.

Additionally the dining table was used to play Mordheim Quest games in the Marienburg sewer network with the 'Border Town Collapsing' scenario plus four tavern brawls were fought using the scenario 'Last Orders!'

Some time was spent drawing up warband lists on Friday evening. Most of the games took place on Saturday beginning in the morning and finishing quite late as has become tradition. Some of the survivors who arrived late on Saturday reconvened on Sunday for a couple more games. As the sound of battle died down it was clear that the most successful outfits had been the Dark Elf Corsairs, Skaven Warp-Engineers and Fimir Ambushers.

Everybody attending the get together brought something unique of their own making to the exploratory return to the City of Islands & Bridges. In the case of Enys and Dan that meant a supply of mead, for Michelle two tins of baked banana bread cakes, and Chris rocked up with his deadly concoction of home-brewed stout.

João took the opportunity to limber up his camera skills in preparation for the Oldhammer Weekend which the two of us had booked in for at Stoke Hall in Newark, the home of Wargames Foundry owned by 'The Mighty Avenger' Bryan Ansell. I took this opportunity to familiarise myself with Marienburg terrain to help select the best scenarios to go on the road with up to Nottinghamshire for the annual Oldhammer community event 'Bring Out Your Lead' (BOYL) III.

Although we did not get around to playing through all of the scenarios, there were some firm favourites seeing repeat play throughout Saturday. Our newest guests took the liberty of making the most of the abundance of scenery conjured up by João Sousa, Carl Merrell and I. We also made use of some new ships that Chris & I have been constructing in the hope of taking the waterfront actions beyond the limits of Fisherman's Steps, Oyster Dock and Candle Wharf. Boarding actions and danger chasing false beacons in the Reiksmouth Estuary beckons.

There was the usual spate of post battle scrambling about for desirable rare items. We kept the amount of visits to special Marketplace locations to a minimum, yet thanks to the Wasteland Exploration tables there were still some unexpected visits to the Infamous Haunts found in seedier corners of the city-port! Skaven and Fimir Heroes jostled over wyrdstone shards (1 in 6 chance of finding tainted treasures) to take to the Alchemist and the amphibious Fimm nobles felt the touch of Chaos upon them more than once. Speaking of Warp-touch rolls, we took a break from the tabletop for dinner and discovered the taint of wyrdstone upon a menu board in one of the local fast food restaurants on Charminster High Street! Another recommendation for the Infamous Haunts chapter.

The cramped streets and docks of Marienburg caused the usual amount of cursing from Phil as he led his Maneaters through the Old Money Ward for perhaps the final time. The ogres faired well enough beneath the Dead Canal on a smuggling run through the sewer network.

The lascars of Crime-lord Salaman Singh were once again absent as the Pirate-King's usual warband commander Stu Webb had chosen to lead a crew of Dark Elf Corsairs down the Reik onto Marienburg's South Dock.

Despite the absence of lockstocked holy templars with their smoking flintlock barrels we enjoyed the divine presence of Sigmar in the feminine form of an orderly visitation by Sisters of Sigmar. Our new pilgrim on the dock Enys led the ladies in a fervent charge across seaweed-strewn cobblestones to liberate orphans. Waterfront witches or heroines with halos, the Sigmarites faced the Lords of the Marsh with all their zeal.

Despite being bitch-slapped in an opening encounter by swampbound monsters they bounced back with proud posture. Righteousness prevailed in the rolling fog as the united sisterhood held their ground while craven fiends clawed at their buxom forms.

The Marienburg Secretariat repelled an assault from drunken barbarians across Powder Bridge at great cost.

River watchmen were plunged like sinking torpedoes into the Poultice Water yet with enough reinforcements the law fought hard enough to press the hoary heathens back as far as Norse Town.

The Reiksmouth Estuary ran thick with blood. An recurring aquatic menace threatened civilians each time that an eerie mist descended upon the port.

From the relative safety of priestess-blessed skiffs the fallen Sisters find they are less welcome sailing the canals than they had imagined in Manannshaven as they disembark for Temple District on their pilgrimage.

Lords and ladies. Marsh daemons biting off as much as they can chew in the shape of whip-toting she-devils. Well that's what Witch Hunter General Dave would call those feisty matriarchs.

Wharf rats slumming it down on Sour Dock. Strigany gypsies will take any kind of work. They won't do it honestly because of shadowy traditions they can never escape from. The past has a habit of catching up with river pirates! They won't be the first crew of cut-throats to dance from a gibbet in Marienburg. As the End Times approach they could well be the last!

There are some enormous vermin reported to be infesting the city. This one must have sat on a warpstone slab!

Sigmar's Solace provides safe haven for the least favourable priesthood in Marienburg. The God-King was never popular in the City of Secret Deals. Worship of Handrich is a perpetual state and the following of Stromfels rise with the tide.

What everyone wants to see right now. More pictures taken by João. Enjoy the scenery! There will be more of it in our report of Oldhammer 2015 weekend.

Move with the times

Posted by  | Tuesday, May 19, 2015  at 2:31 AM  

War in the north has been raging on and off since before 2004 when the Storm of Chaos played out globally. The massive narrative campaign for Warhammer marked a golden age of releases that began with the Mordheim game published in 1999.

An unhealthy trend is developing in the world of tie-in fiction. The term 'retcon' was born within the comics industry. Now every major movie franchise is rewriting lore or reinventing personalities to fit a commercial template for a corporate release. Whether it is an adaptation or a continuation, there must be some logic behind the pretence that past events never occurred. Time travel unmakes historical happenings. Crossing into parallel dimensions reshapes universes. When imagination fails to deliver then for convenience let's say it was a dream. All solutions continue to be popular trends in fantasy story telling.

Anyone who takes an interest in the historical nature of things can hopefully appreciate this sentiment; What happened, happened! Get over it.

Most enthusiasts drift in and out of the hobby at stages of their lives. Playing mostly 3rd and 4th edition Warhammer battles my interest in military scale engagements had dwindled by the time 5th edition was released. The lore has been my anchor since the beginning! Reconnecting me with tabletop combat through story telling, in skirmishes (using Mordheim system) later inspired by refined sourcebooks and better quality novels published across the years that would follow. Contemporary authors like C L Werner, Josh Reynolds, David Guymer, Darius Hinks and Chris Wraight in particular have done a fine job building upon Oldhammer stories quilled by Bill King and Jack Yeovil. Exemplary work by Green Ronin in Warhammer RPG never ceases to amaze.

Of the End Times apocalypse itself I have feelings of indifference. The levelling of every major city and repository of lore contained therein is a terrible waste. Okay so Marienburg has been sacked four times previously! Cities rise and fall. Resurrection is a big theme in the series. Recovering from decapitation is a big ask. My favourite character Brunner snuffed it in volume 5. He did blow Archaon off his daemon steed with a wyrdstone bullet before being run through on the Slayer of Kings. Damn shame the bounty hunter's second pistol misfired otherwise he could've claimed an unprecedented reward. These are the moments on the battlefield I will remember. Gotrek finally finds his doom. The dwarf slayer has earned it... Unless there is another rewrite of the history books in seven years times, because Karl Franz wakes up covered in sweat to discover it was all a bad dream, his night terrors possibly induced by chewing weirdroot or more likely taking a Lahmian vampire to his bed.

Lots of hard graft that has gone into maintaining continuity over the past 15 years suddenly seems to have gone out the window. That is the element of this grand campaign which has me puzzled. There have been severe compromises made by bringing this story to press. It contains the same brand of irritating contradictions that fans of comic books have resigned themselves to living with. Forgive or forget, the epic scale of this new military orientated lore is magnificently presented. It's an ambitious series of stories where the traditions of showcasing biased accounts have not been entirely discarded. e.g. What you might have experienced in a Council of Thirteen meeting can easily discredit accounts found in a tale of Dwarf Lords.

While ambivalence surrounds the evolution of the game story for hobbyists battling in the modern day, it is amusing to find plenty of Oldhammer players quit the hobby before personalities like Nagash, Thorgrim and Malekith ever came into existence. Meaning they couldn't give a fuck if the characters or the world lives or dies.

Like the gods, perhaps some players are tired. Others are mortified by developments.

It has been worth waiting to see the thing out. The story arc itself is mammoth. A shame to upturn a rich history by hinting at the lore from Storm of Chaos being retrod. That uncertain aspect of it has been poorly handled, lending the affair to inconsistency. Dwarfs have long memories for bearing grudges. There are enough dates and excerpts to be scrounged out of source material to catalogue the second coming of Archaon (formerly Diederick Kastner, bastard son of a Norse champion of the Vargs). Anyone who was in the north when Archaon failed to conquer the Fauschlag in 2522 saw the Chaos warlord forced into retreat. Whether the Everchosen took sanctuary in Brass Keep before fleeing the Middle Mountains across the Sea of Claws to regroup, it is unsurprising the barbarian hordes were driven back. Their lack of discipline not to mention personal hygiene failings is evidence enough.

Warhammer world being brought to the brink of self-destruction might aptly mirror the marketplace position of a corporation once thought to lord over the industry from its ivory tower on the high street. Moving with the times means that all fantasy gaming could be set historically in a time of legends. Not just for Mordheim players then.

Survivors grieve and move on.

"Gotrek's passing will be the doom of this world. But it may be enough to save the next."
— Morzanna, Mutant-Prophetess

Death of a hero

Posted by  | Sunday, April 5, 2015  at 8:30 PM  

As the last hope of the Old World falls to a few heroes, the fate of the mortal realm is decided by their final deeds in these dark times. The End Times marks the conclusion of an era in story telling. The stark realisation that fables of legend have come to a natural conclusion is something fans of the stories are finding quite sad. Not everyone is willing to let go.

"If this journal is found, if the day was won, then remember this - here a Slayer lies."
— Felix Jaeger, Poet

A week after that report of our Erlach mountain battle was published my friend Antony died. We fought together on the tabletops for many years with cards and dice. A talented musician, Antony shared many hobby hours making guitar music that involved writing, arranging, recording and performing in bands with his friends. There were times when the music saved me from ruin and he was always there.

Antony appeared as a special guest player in the last battle day we ran in Marienburg. Previously he participated in this tabletop tavern brawl battle report. That was the first battle report after I began publishing articles for Liber Malefic.

Antony will be remembered as a chivalrous hero. A buccaneer amongst bureaucrats. Losing him in a cruel trick of fate was a bitter blow. Unexpectedly saying goodbye cuts right to the core. He was something of a legendary personality. Knowing the journey continues with no further contributions by his swift blade is unbearable. He enriched my life story as only a Slayer-pirate could. Miss you buddy.

Cities rise and fall

Posted by  | Tuesday, January 6, 2015  at 2:57 AM  

Over the years the greatest port of the Old World has been sacked no less than five times. The city has suffered raids, sieges, conspiracies, invasions and plague. It has been razed, pillaged and burnt to the ground. In the Imperial calendar year of 2525 the hordes of Chaos befouled the Free City of Marienburg for the sixth time.

Behold the End Times are upon us! We returned to what should have been familiar surrounds of Oyster Dock in Temple District only to discover... That disaster had overtaken Marienburg.

Marienburg was founded on the ruins of an ancient Sea Elf fortress by the Jutones tribe. What elves abandoned, men rebuilt. Our city lies in ruins once again. Nurgle's Rot ravaged the population. The Plague Lord's foetid host marched on in the spring of 2525 converging on Altdorf. For anyone interested in apocalyptic current affairs or the historical destruction wrought against the greatest port in the Old World, I have compiled a fairly concise timeline of significant events.

Download the timeline calendar here:
The Marienburg Timeline (PDF, ca. 0.1 MB)

The End Times campaign for Warhammer is huge. This announcement only skims the surface of events involving the Empire, her neighbours and the hordes of Chaos from Volume 2. I am following the story more thoroughly through the Black Library novels rather than the Warhammer rulebooks releases for the End Times campaign. Inconsistencies do crop up in the End Times source material.

example: Louen Leoncour, the Lionheart
In the novel 'Fall of Altdorf', the dethroned King's chest is sawed up by Festus the Leechlord, and he dies in the arms of a Shallayan priestess, somewhat peacefully. In the 'Warhammer: Glöttkin' campaign book, the Lionheart dies in the arms of a gloating Festus, more specifically, his head is brutally sawed off and displayed to shocked Empire soldiery.

Volume 1 involving the resurrection of Nagash, maps the ambitions of the Von Carstein bloodline, including Elize von Carstein, Doyenne of Red Abbey, and her favourite get, the ghoul-caller, Erikan Crowfiend. Volume 3 charts those of Aenarion's bloodline with welcome cameos from two fan favourites, the Shadow King of Nagarythe, Alith Anar, and the Warpsword, Daemon's Bane, Tyrant of Hag Graef, Malus Darkblade.

Volume 4 is scheduled to involve the Skaven. There have been further spin-off's available in the form of new novels for Gotrek & Felix. Black Library has other releases being lined up with some of its best authors getting involved, notably a new Malus Darkblade story quilled by C L Werner.

There is plenty more I could say about the new material. That would spoil the surprise. Go check it out yourselves. It's the end of an era. And the the beginning of a new one.
"Everywhere we look is as ruined and lifeless as the last, yet here we stay because this ruin is ours."
— Pirate-King Salaman Singh, Marienburg Crimelord

Fool's gold

Posted by  | Friday, November 7, 2014  at 7:39 PM  

Annual battle day is an affair featuring Mordheim regulars plus guest friends. Organised to coincide with my birthday each year there needs to be festive conditions. Surprises were various this year.

[L-R] Gold diggers arrive at Erlach: Chopper, Ant, João, Bob, Phil
A tiring excursion through Little Country, beyond the city walls of Marienburg. Site of once proud delvers is Erlach, a mining colony in the shadow of the Pale Sisters mountain range. Historically dwarf prospectors excavated the wild foothills of the Wasteland region. Most of its riches have been plucked over the years leaving slim pickings. For those canny diggers bold enough to venture deeper into untapped crevices could be a heap of spoils or the curse of greed.

Hosting the get together in my father's garage provided a change of scene in more than one sense. For this unique occasion that themed mountain board built for our Border Town Burning adventure came out of retirement. It has been kept stored in the garage ever since we completed our campaign at Games Workshop Poole set in the Cathayan borderlands. Another highlight was the refreshing keg of Bugman's Ale acquired for players to wet their whistles throughout the day.

We have enjoyed playing team scenarios before rather than battle royale style multi-player battles. These play a lot quicker based on shared turn sequences. This year's event used a chapter written for the occasion. It was published on Liber Malefic before the event in my last article; Quest for nostalgia. Golden opportunities to play doubles games using paired teams of like-minded factions don't come up often. A narrative campaign that is deeply rich as Mutiny in Marienburg provides a satisfying landscape for this story of adventure.

As much as I revel in the gaming experience itself, the set up for a tabletop battle like this is something to be appreciated in equal measure. This years encounter was memorably planned out with the assistance of fellow TBMF member João Sousa. The Portuguese-man has an eye-catching collection of Citadel memorabilia that includes lots of villagers plus a small throng of bearded characters. João has a soft spot for the stout fellows! This provided us with ample excuse to populate the entire plateau of my mountain board with beautifully painted civilians, both Umgi and Dawi. For every warband participating in the battle there will be six colonists. That was what my scenario quoted! An even mix of 48 villagers and prospectors representing the colonists of Erlach. Deploying this amount of cannon fodder colonists becomes a tactical quandary in its own right.

First at the scene was Bob. Earlier when we agreed times I hadn't factored in extra times for picking up João. That included loading his miniatures and terrain being transported to the mountain. Bob was tapping his watch when we arrived, asking "what time did we call this?" and to be fair we were running later than planned. Fortunately I had erected the board and set out my collection of miniatures in advance. What followed was a bit of reassembly work on some mountainside causeways damaged in storage. The signpost to Mordheim from Shang-Yang was repaired. João unpacking his themed terrain piece followed by miniatures representing two dwarf warbands, a goblin pirate flotilla and 48 mining colonists.

Antony arrived shortly after to signal that it was time for the colony to be deployed. Together the defending team of João and Ant creatively positioned the colonists and their respective warband pairing of Dirty Ruddy Stunties. Rangers guided by a Runesmith Journeyman and Noble led band of Treasure-hunters.

Mountain defence squad - Ant & João deploy the Dawi miners
While dwarfs were busy populating the plateau, three corners of the tabletop were assigned among three raiding partnerships. Each corner of the foothills posed different variables but it was clear that one corner was more favourable while another was most undesirable. Allocations were made based on treating higher warband ratings as a handicap upon arrival of Phil and our special guest player representing two more teams. Their team partners would be appearing later in the day due to family and working commitments, meaning these lone rangers would be deploying two warbands each then captaining both through an interim period.

The next phase following deployment was lunch, home cooked by Mother Cresswell. Fried chicken was well received. Washed down nicely by steins of Proper Job XXXXXX brewed by St. Austell Bugman's brewery.

In order of warband ratings (Team 1 = lowest, Team 4 = highest) Coham's Barbarians deployed on the North-East edge at the foot of the steepest route where warriors would ascend the vertical mount using a network of wooden causeways and a rope bridge. Ivory Road Warriors deployed on the South-East edge at the base of a winding incline most easily traversed by vehicles or large models. Predators deployed on the South-West edge had the unenviable task of scaling a sequence of rickety platforms before joining a windy mountain road leading to mine entries at the summit.

Business partnerships in the Free City

Team 1 - Dirty Ruddy Stunties
Dwarf Rangers & Dwarf Treasure Hunters
João Sousa & Antony Bowker

Team 2 - Coham's Barbarians
Cult of Stromfels & Norse Explorers
Ham Haslett & Andy 'Chopper' Extance

Team 3 - Ivory Road Warriors
Ogre Maneaters & Battle Monks of Cathay
Phil Card & 'Canada' Steve Hume

Team 4 - Predators
Fimir Ambushers & Swamp Goblins
Bob Whetton & Stu Cresswell

Conspicuous by their absence were a fourth proposed team 'Mice & Men'. The pirate alliance of Clan Skyre & Clan Skurvy duping a water-caravan of Strigany river gypsies. They never sailed due to house moving commitments made by the Hayward-Steeles (Chris & Michelle). No sign either of other campaign regulars, Witch Hunters or Salaman Singh's cartel gang of lascars from the Spice Islands.

Making up the numbers this year are two seasoned campaigners. We have the long-awaited return of the mysterious Cathayans led by local wine merchant Steve Hume (aka Canada or Cad). Even longer since is the return of a very welcome guest, my old schoolmate Andy who commanded a tribe of hoary Norse sailors in our first ever annual campaign battle day: South Dock Massacre. With all the dwarfs on site it would be suicidal to walk a troupe of sea elves into their mining village. For the sake of rounding out the team partnerships João handed over his goblins warband to me, pairing up diminutive swamp-pirates with the Lords of the Marsh.

Campaign rewards for participating in this battle would be hard fought over. There was potential for uncovering spoil heaps of gold, hoarded treasures, warp-touched trinkets of cursed dwarf gold, plus a single chance at uncovering one of the Greater Artefacts speculated to be moving through Marienburg and the Wasteland at this time. Specifically we are talking about a war mask with magic properties cast from solid gold. An artefact currently associated with rival factions in the city.

Perilous features of the scenario are the involvement of considerable non-player characters. João & I discussed options for this monstrous cast of wanderers and dormant denizens. In the end settling on a suite of wandering monsters for random happenings in addition to possible scary outcomes when exploring the mines. Of these the deadliest outcomes are waking a great beast snoozing in one of the mines or attracting the attention of a migrating giant.

As (rotten) luck would have it the barbarians attracted the giant in only their second turn of the battle, presumably using their loathsome body odour, a mix of goat piss, virgins blood & honey mead!

Motivation for my giant comes in the form of Fighting Fantasy monster sized miniatures. They featured in the pages of the first Warhammer rulebooks that I clapped eyes on. As a consequence Citadel's first plastic miniatures ever released (in 60mm scale!) hold great significance to me. It was with glee that I set about bastardising a large scale resin release from Forge World. At a similar time David Stafford was working on a giant sized resin piece for his collection so that provided further inspiration to me. What started life as a limited edition stone troll has since become the (even more limited edition) giant cyclops. This was a hobby project being planned since testing the Manhunt scenario from Border Town Burning supplement.

A big change to the administration of warbands at this get together was that everyone has gone digital with their roster sheet. This was a carefully planned move. After releasing the new format of Fillable PDF warband roster sheet the guys in my campaign were quick to pick this up. We transferred all warband details from paper rosters onto these 'smart scrolls' in the weeks prior to battle day. In theory we could host all our rosters in a public folder on the Dropbox.

At this point it will not be easy to relay all the specifics of our battle. Some of us were drinking ale. Fortunately we have a sequence of photographs captured during the battle that may help to piece together some of the important moments. These can be viewed by visiting the 'Mordheim Timeline' widget in the sidebar. Scroll down to 28th June. The live feed for this battle was run using my Twitter account @Mordheimer allowing me to send images and submit captions from the game straight into the shared digital feed on Liber Malefic.

Antony departed for personal reasons or perhaps because the keg was running low when he realised he was riding his bicycle home drunk from the village. Did I mention my parents aptly live in a village!?

Bob departed due to work commitments before 'Canada' Steve and Ham would arrive. It was as if the Ruinous Powers were trying to steer the fimir raid from beyond the Realm of Chaos, as written prompts and audio memorandums sent by Bob were received continuously on my handset via Whatsapp as the game progressed in his absence!

Blood brothers - Chopper & Ham lead a Chaos barbarian charge
Things went up a gear when Steve arrived. As João, Phil & I were flagging Steve started calling some shots that helped lead his Battle Monks within sight of the scenario objectives. While the ogres had looked likely to get bogged down by the tide of colonists under Phil's leadership, Steve's boundless enthusiasm drove the monks and maneaters over the summit into the heart of the colony. The rest of us must have been too fatigued from commanding efforts from the front line. Mistakes were being made due to modifying tactics based on a frantic scramble to reach the plateau. The mountain was beating us and we knew it!

A clunky schedule of arrivals and departures had physical repercussions on the outcome of battle day. With the hour being late my dear mother's decision to call time (kick out!) on the same round the first wave of barbarians scaled the summit. A decision that came as a relief to João who like myself had been courteously abandoned by his team partner. Andy weathering the full days events in real time better than the rest and Ham being fresh to the table, Coham's Barbarians were desperate for one more round of turns to reach two objectives in their grasp! In the end it wasn't to be. Ivory Road Warriors was the only team to reach objectives with a running time that clocked over ten hours. Of the two objectives they secured only one entry reaped a positive result in the mines. A single nugget of cursed dwarf gold was enough to claim victory.

Ham assessing the vista beyond the reach of his barbarian host
What comes next? Back room deals to be struck in a thematic post-battle sequence to be hosted by Steve in the privacy of his liquor store after hours.

Stu + Steve outside the old liquor store, at Tatnam in Poole town