Getting back in the regular gaming schedule, we re-ignited our ASoBH campaign last night with Matt and Derek’s parties supported by additional adventurers under John’s command. The three of them created a 7-person party with characters from their own teams, and together braved the outer ring of the Lich King’s domain.
Facing them were Ebramon Hex, the dreaded Necromancer, with his legion of zombies, Imor, the Dark Sentinel, (Ghast champion) a nameless spectral warrior, and a swarm of vicious Plague Rats.
Things started well, with the intrepid adventurers advancing through the ancient gateway, boldly striding to meet the forces of decay and death.
But alas, whom the gods destroy, they first make mad, and lo, the spirit of Leeroy Jenkins did come heavily upon them, much to their eternal loss and shame.
The bards will wonder if it was Matt’s bravado that led to their demise, charging forward heedlessly as rats, a ghost, and a ghast spilled from the ruined church. Or perhaps it was Derek’s decision to separate his two clerics from their comrades and angle toward the zombie-infested graveyard by their lonesome. Or was it John’s misplaced confidence in his Elf Spellcaster, evidenced by placing him directly out in front of the party without a fighter bodyguard?
Who knows what fantastical delusions, what insidious deceptions, devil-spawned hubris prompted the adventurers to reckless abandon and death? (Perhaps the zombies who ate their brains) No one will ever say for certain.
Next week, the survivors will face the Lich King himself.
Finally got to run through a trial game of Rogue Stars last night. One character each to get the basic mechanics down. Cyber-Ninja and Tank against a Bounty Hunter and Pirate (he prefers the term ‘Privateer’)
Rolls for Mission, Objective, Environment, Complications will come after we have Activation/Reaction, Movement and Combat down. Besides, some of us haven’t worked up a full crew yet.
Our Cyber-Ninja and Tank were the attackers while the Pirate and Bounty Hunter found their mutual interests momentarily aligned enough to team together to thwart them.
Turn One saw both sides spend Actions/Reactions advancing and jockeying for position. Derek’s Tank Quantum Harnessed its big self a mere three inches from the objective right away. John’s Alien Bounty hunter rushed forward hoping to bring his Laser Rifle to bear.
Cyber-Ninja aka “Sneaky Death-Borg” sidled up the left by the bunker and through the trees while our dashing Privateer sauntered forward, ostensibly in support of his (temporary) ally.
The next turn saw Derek’s Tank move forward and blaze away with his Plasma Cannon, inflicting a world of pain on the Bounty Hunter. First volley sizzled through the torso armor, knocked him flat with two Pins and a Serious Wound. Threat dispatched, he then grabbed the objective.
The Pirate, shocked by the violent display, rushed forward and unloaded his SMG on the Tank. Two rounds of Automatic FIre (four shots) and the Tank crumbled. Huzzah Team Pirate!
Thinking the tables are turning, the Bounty Hunter successfully activates, removes two pins, staggers to his feet, only to be charged by the SDB and decapitated in a devastating flurry of Monowire Sword blows. Oops. The cyber-ninja wiped his blade clean and ran off behind a hill before the Pirate could turn around with his trusty SMG.
All that by Turn 3.
The Pirate – who couldn’t help but notice the keenness of the Cyber-Ninja’s blade and his prowess – decided the wiser course of action was to camp out at the old Warp Gate and force the SDB to cross the open ground to him. (rather than chase after him) So… we called it and sat back to discuss our first encounter with Rogue Stars.
A QRS would really help. First game sure, but flipping back and forth in the book got tedious. (which is not what we want in a game) For the love of all the miniature gods, I’m imploring you, Osprey.
Range for 2-Hand Weapons. 8″ Base Range for pistols and such makes sense, I guess. But for Long Guns? 12″ at least. Might House Rule that. We’ll see.
Character Creation is Fun. Yes, there are Pre-Gen Characters and Crews in the back of the book but you really can slot in any SF fig in your collection and make it work. All of us enjoyed making our characters and are looking forward to making full crews.
A QRS would really help.
Again, this was a one-of game to learn the core Movement and Combat mechanics, so our impression is limited. The Mission Tables, Environments, Settings, Complications, and Campaign Rules all look great, but we’ll cross those bridges when we come to them. Rogue Stars might be a bit crunchy for some, but I’m confident once we familiarize ourselves with the basics, we’ll move onto a full-blown campaign. At this point, we’re all very much looking forward to that.
Below are a couple pictures of more recent brushwork. They may or may not get some Rogue Star action.
We had a new guy with us last Tuesday night, so we did a quick one-of scenario for ASOBH. John is an old hand at RPGs but fairly new to TTGs. One of the many things I appreciate about the ASOBH system is how easy it is to teach newcomers.
Matt, Derek, and John each had a pair of heroes, all of whom banded together to chase the Iron Jaw Orcs and the infamous giant, Nal-Rog of the Nine Hills from the ruins of Gray Maarten’s Tower, near the rune stones locally called the Four Sisters.
Real slugfest. Heroes for the win. No AAR but here are some pictures.
Painted up two new Shadowrun-type crews, so ‘Song of Mirrorshades and Shadows’ on the docket for tomorrow night.
Derek was called into work, furiously cooking gluten-free alternatives for customers’ Thanksgiving celebrations, but Matt and I got together over a quick ‘one-of’ ASOBH game last night.
Hrodor the Druid and his nephew Brynar have been tracking the evil necromancer Heinrich Klutch for months. Following him to the quiet hamlet of Tendale, the Northmen hire two sturdy rangers to reinforce their party and follow the sorcerer into the woods. Little do they know the wretched man plans on desecrating the ancient Shrine of the Skystone with dire incantations and foul majiks.
After an hour in the woods, the rangers suddenly report the old man has stopped in the shrine’s clearing a quarter mile on and seems to be preparing to enact some kind of ritual. Worse, he has been joined by unnatural allies: two cursed spirits, a gibbering ghoul, a brawny ghast, and a large, ugly warrior armed with a heavy battle ax and a deadly hand scythe. Six against four – they’re outnumbered.
“No matter,” Hrodor said. “We will stop this desecration, cut Klutch’s black heart from his body, and finally put an end to his vile schemes.”
Brynar hefts his sword and ax. “Ja. And I’ll cut down anyone or anything that gets in my way.”
Reluctant at first, the rangers pluck up their courage, unlimber their bows, and stalk into the woods.
The battle began well for Hrodor. The Rangers crept forward on the right as he and his nephew went left. The Ghoul was the first to spot the intruders and raced to confront Brynar. Garn Gravehand, the large pestilent warrior, and the unnamed Ghast followed after, leaving Klutch and the Cursed spirits to finish the ritual.
Brynar cleaved the Ghoul in half, spraying ichor and black blood among the trees. The Ghast attacked one of the rangers but was forced back. Gravehand’s bulk slowed him down and he lumbered through the underbrush toward the fighting.
Eventually Gravehand and the Ghast reached the Druid’s warband and began slugging it out. The battle was evenly matched with neither side gaining an advantage – until the Cursed spirits showed up.
Aura of Terror. That’s what cinched it for the forces of Darkness. A simple spell but so effective.
Frustrated at the interruption, Klutch sent the spirits to help Gravehand. The spirits floated swiftly on dire winds toward the fighting. Before they landed a single blow, their eerie, forlorn wailing and unearthly glow forced Hrodor’s compatriots to make morale checks. First one Ranger panicked, then Brynar flinched. Next, the Northern warrior was forced back by the Ghast. Another ghostly wail, and he fled off the nearest board edge. That left the Druid and the second Ranger, who fired ineffectively at the creatures advancing on them before retreating themselves. A rather ignominious conclusion to noble intentions.
Like the old Northern adage goes: Run, run, run away. Live to fight another day.
Hrodor’s vengeance was thwarted but not quenched.
*Notice if you will, the fallen rune stone on the right edge of the board. If Matt had bothered checking it, (it was marked with an objective stone) he would have found Piotor, a former mercenary come on hard times. Not above rolling the occasional drunk or lone traveler for a few extra coins, Piotor had followed Klutch into the woods thinking him an easy mark. Once the uglies showed up however, he wisely decided to back off. Some assistance and the promise of a a share in the spoils/reward, Piotor would have gladly have given Hrodor and crew a hand. But did Matt check? Nooooooooooo.
Our intrepid Wasteland Marshals are after a trio of bandits who have been robbing water purification stills on the edges of the San Joaquin settlement. Enlisting the help of a couple local scroungers, the lawmen tracked them to old town of Marcos Hills.
Surveying the tumble of bleached, jagged ruins, one hunter spit and shook his head. “Bad place. Dead place.”
Marshal Royce frowned. “They in there?”
The scroungers nodded, pointing at a tall, three floor pile of rubble. “There. Top floor if they got a lick of sense between ’em.”
Royce lifted his his rifle and chambered a round. “Well then that’s where we’re going.”
The water thieves took shelter in the three-story building on the left, trusting no one in their right mind would risk following after. They figured they could hold up for the night high on the top floor, safe from whatever mutant madness roamed these ruins, then be on their merry at daybreak.
Unfortunately for them, Wasteland Marshals aren’t in their right mind. So it was on.
The Marshal and one deputy take cover in the shell of the old store right in front of them. Two floors, it’s gives decent field of fire for the right and center of the area. And for the alley below. Meanwhile, the third deputy leads the Scoungers to the left, picking their way toward the bandit’s lair.
The bandits spot one of the scroungers and open fire. One bandit goes down, a scrounger is pinned, but his partner and the deputy manage to sneak closer.
However, the sound of gunfire draws some unwanted attention: Ragers – a pack of ’em. Even worse, they are accompanied by what the locals call a ‘Linterna del Diablo’ or “Devil’s Lantern” – an rare breed of insane psyker mutant whose eyes glow with eerie power and who levitates when using its unnatural abilities. Plus there’s a Mack – huge brute rager known to have torn men in half with its bare hands. They come from the alley on the right, effectively separating the Marshal from the rest of his posse. It was two separate battles now, against two separate enemies.
Marshal Royce watched the Ragers boil out of the alley like a pack of rabid dogs, howling, growling, scrambling, heading their way. He turned toward his deputy. “Thought this was going too easy.”
More soldiers for our STALKER-style games. This time it’s a 5-man Zone Security team that includes a heavy-duty exo-suit.
I also picked up some of Eureka’s Modern Russians and started more individual STALKERS using old Pig Iron heads. They’re turning out well. Pictures when I finish a few more.
For now, here’s the Zone Enforcement. With the holidays fast approaching, our game schedule will be spotty until the new year, but I think these boys will be able to deploy tomorrow evening against a marauding bandit crew. (and perhaps a swarm of Ragers)
Creating faction squads for Zona Perestrelki, our latest iteration of home-brew skirmish rules for the STALKER-verse, I put together these five. Ex-military types, they have decent experience and gear. The figs themselves are Empress Miniatures Modern Russians with head swaps. Other faction squads on the painting table include Zone Enforcement troops, a (heavily armed) U.N. Research Team, and RMU/Elite Bandits (Rogue Military Unit turned Mercenary)
These lads will be seeing action tomorrow night. Not my best work but decent enough to die in the Zone, eh? Wish them luck.