This time, I wanted something new in our games, so Gorm's IroncLads had to participate in a man-hunt. Their task was to cooperate with other companies in order to capture or eliminate a band of outlaws that formed around an escaped pit fighter. The pit fighter and his band had their lair in an old keep, and reckoning that their current position is untenable, they decided to either break through the encirclement or die gloriously.
Objective: Kill, incapacitate or demoralize half or more outlaws.
- Gorm: Q3+ C3, Leader, Group Fighter, Heavily Armored, Block, Short Move
- Goth'Rack: Q3+ C3, Boiling Blood, Fearless, Unruly, Stubborn, Block, Short Move
- Ragnar: Q4+ C3, Hammering Blow, Heavily Armored, Short Move, Steadfast
- Gimli, Robur the Scabby, The Other Warrior: Q4+ C3, Heavily Armored, Block, Short Move, Steadfast
- Lorm: Q4+ C3, Crossbow, Heavily Armored, Short Move, Steadfast
- Skadi: Q4+ C2, Crossbow, Good Shot, Heavily Armored, Short Move, Steadfast
Objective: Freedom or death!
- Pit Fighter: Q3+ C4, Inspiring, Master Duellist, Terror
- Bowman: Q4+ C2, Shooter: Long, Good Shot, Unerring Aim, Reload
- 3 Outlaws: Q4+ C3
- Halberdier: Q4+ C3 Heavy Weapon
Inspiring is a version of Leader, who can't issue commands but still gives Q bonus to figures in 1xL. Terror represents the renown of a veteran pit fighter, just as Master Duellist represents his combat skill. Perhaps giving him C3 and Combat Master would be a better choice, but in the end it had no effect on game.
As soon as a patrolling bowman rushed in with the bad news, the outlaws set to motion. The plan was to break through the dwarves no matter the cost.
|Breached tower, later known as an oasis of peace and tranquility.|
Ironically, all they managed in the whole game was to enter the tower and stare menacingly at the grim dwarf with big hammer blocking their way. (This was the main argument for lifting the restrictions on reactions - both those men and the dwarf were of Q4+, so none of us didn't want to risk activating them, when there was so much happening on the other side of the keep. Another point for FF!)
|The other side of the keep was where the fun was being had.|
Things went a bit more lively where the leaders were. Missiles crossed the air and fighters were closing in. Perhaps the ale was a tad too strong last evening, perhaps it was too early, but the dwarves didn't advance in their characteristical coordinated fashion. (Until then I thought I had been the only one with such horrible activation rolls...)
|The dwarves spread out in fear that their quarry might run away.|
Still in clutches of a hangover, Gorm ordered his lads to charge, and threw himself forward. Gimli and another warrior also joined the fray, determined to show the pit fighter how not impressed they were, while Robur and Goth'Rekk intended to flank the enemy (and take down the pesky archer).
|Up close and personal. Also, reactions galore.|
All changed when Gorm was struck down (as another victim of the dreaded 6:1 split). Robur fled and Gimli retreated. The dwarves then had the advantage of two to four, and intended to use it.
|This was Ironclads' best chance for a kill...|
Goth'Rekk failed to fell the bowman but he had little time for regrets as the pit fighter charged him. And knocked him down. And stylishly took out him of action.
|...which they failed to realize.|
The bowman headed for the ruined tower, hoping to stay out of sight of at least one crossbowman, but soon after that the remaining dwarf in contact was mobbed and brought down. This was too much for poor dwarves, and they retreated.
|A good moment to reconsider plans.|
Summary: This game was formed by the bad luck of my opponent - he may have even trumped my horrible activation failures from games past. He was also quite pressed by dwarves' short legs - the fear of the outlaws running away made him to spread his men in a rather risky fashion. I have to agree that some scenarios favor more mobile warbands - either I raise the quality of his dwarves, or give him cavalry (which is quite hard to do without the minis) or we'll have to make mixed warbands. We've also agreed to try the "reactions" without any limits on LoS and distance, which might eliminate staring contests such as the one around the tower.