Friday, September 27, 2013

4th Century Indians

De Bellis Antiquitatis is a game that has always fascinated me. It is considered THE historical war game. I don't know if it is because the rules are so well done, it's apparently so simple, it is relatively easy to build armies for, or if it is because it is played on such a small space.

As I looked through the various armies from the 2nd edition of the rules I decided I wanted to select something I normally wouldn't and came upon the Fourth Century Classical Indian and saw it required 3 elephants and I was sold! I was kind of embarassed I was a war gamer with out elephants in some army somewhere. I mean I have a stegadon in my Lizardmen army which is a fantasy dinosaur elephant, but no TRUE elephants.

My understanding is that this is a pretty tough army to fight. I think that is because it has 3 elephants which have the best combat ability in the game and one of them is a general which makes it even tougher.
Seven elements of 3 Bow. SEVEN DO YOU HEAR! I will darken the skies with arrows and drive my foe to his table edge!

Two speed 3 Cavalry units. They seem kind of out of place in this army but I think i'll use them to threaten a flank or defend a flank.

BOOM BABY! Here they are, the ancient tanks! Three death machines ready to stomp and grind my foes into little pieces of...ground up foes.

The entire 12 elements in all their glory!
The army list has space for some blade, psiloi, and chariots and while I could easily field the blade and psiloi I didn't feel one blade element would enhance anything and the 2 psiloi seemed like a bad replacement for the long bow elements. The chariots would be SUPER cool but I didn't have the miniatures for it and it seemed excessive to buy them when I could field an effective army. If I really get into playing DBA I may add them. 

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Hunting for Cards

I don't normally provide game recommendations, and in general I don't even talk about the video games I'm playing as most just go by (and are fun) but really don't require exposition to an audience. After all you can only tell everyone you jumped on a walking mushroom so many times, after all they have jumped on the same mushrooms.

Obviously Dark Souls does not fall into this category. Anyone who has played it will readily discuss their encounter with even the most mundane enemy. Sure we have all fought the first black knight in the Undead Burg and we all love to tell how we put due to that mother!

Card Hunter is worth a blog post about. Not so much the game play (which is good) or the graphics (which are fantastic) but the feel of it. Not everyone will get the same feel but it hit me right in the nostalgia and it feels good just to look at the game, much less play it. So if you're a gamer born in the 1970's go take a look :)

Oh yeah, ubiquitous eye candy...
That blue makes me think "Isle of Dread" and dinosaurs.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


So a while ago I posted I was going to kill the fire drake in Dark Souls that night which didn't happen. Well my character (Uther the cleric) has been through a lot including accidentally killing Andre of Astora (don't ask) and slaying such massive monsters as the Ceaseless Discharge (worst name ever).

So last night I thought it was time to bring the hurt back to Steven.

Which I did! It was a pretty solid fight still but I had some good anti-fire equipped and between some awesome miracles and the use of Astora's Straightsword I put paid to him and he is now sleeping with the other dead bosses.

Geesh I grew to hate that guy so much!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Batrep Vampires Vs. Empire

So not common for this blog I actually have a battle report to provide to you. This is no great detailed report but it is interesting and worth a read. My friend Greg and I have been playing a sort of campaign by playing through all six of the scenarios in order and this is game number 3 Battle for the Pass.

Vampire Counts Army
*master necromancer with staff of damnation (also known as a shovel)
*2 units of 20 skeleton warriors
*2 corpse carts; one with lodestone and one with balefire
*3 spirit hosts

Empire Army
*captain on warhorse with ogre blade
*level 1 light wizard on warhorse
*30 spearmen
*30 swordsmen
*10 handgunners including a longrifle
*10 crossbowmen
*luninark of hysh

We opted for no terrain, which is unusual but not "unrealistic" as this was a pass we were fighting over. I knew this disadvantaged me but you can't always choose your battles can you?
Turn 1 Start
Set up was a simple battle line for both of us. He went without artillery this time which threw me as I am used to dealing with at least a cannon or two and instead put his power into the luminark. He won the first turn and proceeded to hail crossbow bolts into the corpse cart on the right doing a wound and successfully casting the luminark's spell with irresistable force but rolled a 1 to wound the spirit hosts and failed to do any injury and then it saved the wound it would have taken from the miscast, his wizard did blast my varghulf for a wound though. My turn involved marching forward to come to grips before his magic could do more damage. The varghulf moved to threaten his flanks which I was hoping would draw more attention than it did. My magic phase was quality with a successful incantation that healed the corpse cart of it's one wound and augmented almost all my undead with vigour mortis. Also I blasted the luminark with a solid gaze that did 4 wounds to it, but nearly got sucked into the warp.
Turn 2 Start
Turn two was fair for both of us with his army holding their ground and he tried to throw some magic that I was able to fend off. His missile troops did a few wounds as well. In my half I pulled off a long charge on the swordsmen and supported it with the varghulf which did a nice 6 wounds but the skeletons did none. I won the fight but they were steadfast and did not flee.
Start of Turn 3
Turn three was filled with all kinds of excitement...for the Empire. During his turn he successfully nailed my necromancer with the luminark casting with irresistible force and blew him off the table. I mistook what the distance for "look out sir!" was and regretted it. My army began to crumble immediately with some heavy losses and disappearing corpse carts. But I was undeterred as I truly believe in playing the game out. I wasn't playing to win now, I was playing for the EPIC if it could be found. Which I did find as my charged his spearmen and defeated them causign them to flee past the crossbowmen which were pursuit charged by the skeleton warriors. The other unit didn't fair so well and the combat resolution killed the varghulf and I lost the rest of the warriors as well. But even in the midst of catastrophe I was putting it to the Empire force!
Start of Turn 4
Turn four was pretty predictable. He did a lot of moving things around to better bring his superior force to bear and used the magic in his advantage to blast the remaining spirit hosts. The skeletons that remained continued to impress though and even though they were reduced to just a champion and standard and they proceeded to drive off and run down the crossbowmen then pursue into the spearmen ready to bring it again! Turn four and my two remaining models were ready to kill everything on the table.
Needless to say, they didn't. I didn't have a turn five although Greg did. My skeletons still impressed even in their loss. The captain of the empire charged and was only able to kill the champion. The spearmen attacked (nine of them that is) and they failed to kill the standard bearer as he made his armor saves or parry saves! HUZZAH! Ultimately he failed to kill anyone and the combat modifier caused him to crumble, which was a shame since he was such a hero.

As an aside I still have a problem with the unstable rule. The problem I have is that every unit in the fight takes the hits without saves. So when I teamed up two solid units, but had some poor luck, I lost by 4 but my army lost 8 wounds. If there had been three units that would have been 12 wounds, just seems unbalanced a bit. I know the army can raise back losses but not so fast as that. Especially any unit that is multiple wounds which will only recover one.

Either way, it was a fun game and very cool to fight it to the end. I'm looking forward to our next fight!

Sunday, September 8, 2013


Not this guy...
...although he is totally  hoss yeah, but these guys...
 These 35 men at arms for my Bretonnians took me a long time to get done. This was a little more intimidating of a project than I thought it would be. I am over all pretty intimidated by my Bretonnian army as I want it to look the best I can but repeatedly it doesn't look very good at all, well, in my opinion.
The benefit to a unit of 35 men-at-arms isn't in it's combat strength but in it's cool factor :) Even though individually the pieces aren't all that well painted when you put 35 of them together they look quite nice. As a combat unit they are really only "so-so" as they are poor fighters (WS 2) and the halberds nicely boost their strength score (to a 4) it costs them their shield save and parry save so they only have a 6+ in close combat.
They are cheap too, I think the entire unit of 35 rolls in at around 127 points. This means I can almost always field a huge block of infantry to face off the enemy. Not in the center most likely, you'll see them more on the flanks than anywhere probably since they can't hold ground very well with a low leadership.

I am concentrating on completing my first DBA army so that should be the next thing you see up on this blog! Cross your fingers and hope that more 40k models don't lure me in.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013


For a long time I've had a bunch of Wargames Factory Romans and Celts and for just as long I've wanted to build two armies for Boudiccan Revolt games. I have completed the first unit of Roman Legionaries based as suggested by Neil Thomas in his war games books. I like it well enough. The shield transfers from Wargames Factory are freaking amazing though! I wish Games Workshop would use a similar technology for their decals.
I think they unit turned out really nice and would be good for a variety of war games rules. I would start on another unit but I've made a new war gaming buddy who is into historical gaming and we have decided to pursue some heavy DBA learning. I am going to finish my Classic  Indian army (elephants yes!) and he is doing Macedonians. I  hope to have that done by the end of this month which involves 3 elephants, 2 cavalry, and  another 4 bow units being painted and based be fore then. Wish me luck!