Joy of the marketplace

Posted by  | Wednesday, January 19, 2011  at 1:22 AM  

The original encampments article (Town Cryer issues #27-28) described itself as purely experimental and was introduced as being designed to add more spice* and background to campaigns and allow a warband to establish themselves a base camp around the ruins of Mordheim in Cutthroat's Den, Sigmarhaven or Brigandsburg.

*Not the valuable trade commodity from Araby and Ind!

The base camps of warbands can be determined easily enough by districts and wards marked on any campaign map. This might be of Mordheim, Marienburg or other cities where adventure beckons. Each gang is assumed to be housed. What is less obvious is where warbands can discreetly conduct their private affairs. Keeping hideouts a secret is impossible using the original rules for encampments. A major flaw for any campaign promoting intrigue!

The question of housing clouds the juiciest campaign material idea in the encampments article. That of encouraging Heroes to pursue alternative activities during the Trading phase of the post-battle sequence.

Heroes are not restricted to visiting one special location. The warband as a group may visit D3 locations (in the settlement where they are housed). This experimental process imposes limitations. Visiting locations is presented as an alternative to your Heroes using the Trading chart, implying they cannot do both! There is a contradiction in terms here because some location entries convey bonuses to the Heroes visiting a trading post.

There is also a superfluous random event to resolve between each location visits. (ie, Two locations visited requires one roll on the Events chart to find out what happens in between as the warband carouses around town.) A warband carousing around town is lacking subtlety! Another crucial flaw when there are organised crime networks, Chaos cults, and law enforcement patrols to worry about.

My interpretation of all this would be as follows…

During the Trading phase of the post-battle sequence D3 Heroes may visit one of the special locations instead of searching for a rare item in the marketplace.

The idea of encouraging a Hero to forgo his standard trip to the marketplace in the post-battle sequence is appealing in campaigns. As a game mechanic I have been experimenting with this in a couple of the new gangs for MiM. My hope is that every warband has an opportunity for Heroes to be forfeiting their traditional trading action to pursue an alternative. This could be a tactical decision or a story-based choice which supports the narrative of the campaign plot.

All that remains of interest to me is deciphering which of the existing location entries from the original encampments will have value in my campaign.

"The joy of the market place is that you pay for what you get. The curse of life is that you get what you pay for."
— Strigany saying

Juice dreams

Posted by  | Thursday, January 6, 2011  at 7:21 PM  


Heroes in the Old World can sometimes be found tripping on contraband. After a hard-fought battle against mutants or the undead you can't blame them! A small dose of Crimson Shade here, a snuff of warp-tainted Dust there, or chewing on a piece of Weirdroot to induce a hallucinogenic dream-state. In Marienburg, drug cartels and vice houses are rife in the slums. This is where your more hedonistic Heroes will be able to feed their addictions. All of the latest herbal delights are on offer at the Golden Lotus Dream House on Riddra Isle. It is a house of vice in the notorious district called Three Penny Bridge where every watchman fears the most to patrol. At the Golden Lotus any drug can be supplied to a heroic libertine who needs their next fix.

Any warrior visiting the Golden Lotus Dream House for the first time receives 1 Experience Point.

Experience points gained from entering a drug den!? Why not? Experience can still be gained from bad situations. Your indulgent Hero might already thirst for danger if he was sold to the 'Sold To The Pits'. The infamous Dream House is that exotically designed building with an orange roof on Three Penny Bridge.

How does misadventure affect us in the real world? Rather than pit-fighting or drug abuse, consider the famous quotation below and how it applies to my flunking a History exam (even though I dearly loved the subject).

"That which does not kill us makes us stronger."
— Friedrich Nietzsche

Educational events from my youth are something I've reflected upon while enjoying my craft hobbies. The benefit of hindsight, living life, and working experiences can lead folk to question their education (I know I have) regardless of how fond you might have been of the syllabus! Look back! You studied Kafka, I had Shakespeare. Decipher what parts of the curriculum have proved the most useful.

I never got a lower grade than a B+ in English at Grammar school until I handed over an assignment which was a story featuring Dwarfs & Trolls. I scored a B- and was horrified. This was subject matter which I felt far more familiar with than a lot of the other crap I turned in! Traumatized, that was my first and last attempt at writing fantasy fiction. The experience evidently haunts me as my English teacher has made occasional cameos in my nightmares, the witch.

I may have failed this examination but I still walked away with the same learning as my classmates who scored an A and didn't give a shit about their History lessons. While I can't ever claim to be an expert historian, the benefit of experience I gained from studying the subject will always be mine to draw upon.

Network of specialists

Posted by  | Wednesday, January 5, 2011  at 6:52 PM  

Mordheim has developed a cult following. The game is a spin-off from Warhammer. While the Specialist Games no longer receive the attention they once did in an official capacity there is still an awful lot of hard work put into developing the Warhammer suite. It is from this which Mordheim campaigning draws inspiration and depth. The support comes from you.

Recently I had the pleasure of sharing a PDF containing all of the best Hired Swords available in Mordheim campaign. Advanced* rules solutions and suggestions in 'Swords of the Empire' have been included to give campaigns more depth and reality. There was brilliant feedback here on Tom's Boring Mordheim Forum concerning a number of issues. One of these topics related to enforcing a maximum capacity on the number of Hired Swords appearing with a warband.

*Optional/Experimental

The maximum limit placed on Heroes is 6. While a warband would be hard-pressed to employ and retain more than 6 Hired Swords (and see them survive!) it would technically be possible for more to be acquired if a limit was not applied. That being the case I'm supporting the sensible suggestion that a limit of 6 Hired Swords per warband be applied.

A slick new Warband Roster Sheet is now available to record your Hired Swords on, thanks to the established specialist in this field! Sean 'Zetazot' Maroney has updated the roster on behalf of the Mordheim community on previous occasions most recently for Border Town Burning.

Download the new Warband Roster Sheet here:
Mutiny in Marienburg Roster Sheet (PDF, ca. 0.7 MB)

On top of making more efficient use of space the new form was improved to allow for mounts and draft animals to be recorded in the calculation of your warband rating. Other tweaks will appear aesthetic at this stage because the full story concerning campaign 'Plots' and their 'Objectives' is yet to unfold.