“Seize Ground”… 7th Battle Report

Both the Elves of Lothlórien and the Taken of Minas Morgul have withdrawn to recover their wounded following encounters with a Barrow Wight and its minions in the ruins outside Annuminas. The fighting has taken a toll on all parties but the Orcs following the Barrow Wight have been savaged and the few remaining flee the area. Both the Elves and the Taken seek to secure the now empty ruins for themselves…

The fair weather and sunlight fails to dispel the air of dark dread with in the ruins. Both the Elves and Taken advance towards the central fountain. The Taken seize the two norther ruins the Elves the two southern…. as fate would have it the Barrow Wight appears in the Southwestern ruin!

The Barrow Wight attempts to cast its spell but fails. Cailon shoots his Elven bow and wounds the cursed entity. Randil shoots at Azgarir but fails to hit him.

The Barrow Wight then uses its spell to paralyze Anduniel. Randil shoots at Azgarzir again, this time hitting his horse. The beast throws Azgarzir to the ground and runs off. Cailon can not get a shot for fear of hitting Anduniel. Shagduf has not such restraint and the Orc archer hits the Wight but fails to wound it. The Barrow Wight slashes at Anduniel and leaves her for dead.

The Elves continue to have the initiative. Whilst the Wight casts its spell on Faeril, the hero mightily resists the sorcery. Shagduf shoot again but ends up hitting some rocks in the way.

Archers on both sides loose and fail to find their mark.

However, Faeril manages to slay the Barrow Wight with his spear… despite his still injured arm!

Without the distraction of the Barrow Wight the forces of both sides jockey for position, the Taken have the central fountain and the two norther ruins. The Elves have the two southern ruins. Archers loose but miss. The Spectre, Idrahil fails to ensnare Randil with his Fell Light.

Finally Cailon his Ufgaz with an arrow. Cailon his Arnakhor but fails to wound the heavily armored Black Numenorean as he and Gazbag advance into the southwestern ruins. Idrahil mesmerizes Iareth into advancing alone towards Arnakhor, who then charges her with Gazbag in support. Gazbag uses his spear to fell Iareth.

Cailon hesitates to attack Arnakhor but finds the willpower to overcome his fear and charges him. Faeril charges Gazbag. Idrahil fails to mesmerize Cailon. Randil Hits Idrahil with an arrow but fails to wound the Spectre. Faeril spears Gazbag but fate steps in and keeps Gazbag on his feet. Arnakhor mightily defeats Cailon but fails to get past his heavy Elven armor.

The Elves seize the initiative, with Cailon failing to find the courage to charge Arnakhor again but then in turn shooting him with his Elven bow and felling the Black Numenorean lieutenant. Cailon shoots Azgarzir, but the arrow ends up in his shield. Randil takes a mighty shot and the Elven arrow fells Idrahil the Spectre.

More shots are taken but miss. The Taken continue to advance on the Elves where they can. Azgarzir and Gazbag charge Orcondil, resulting in Gazbag cutting the Elf down.

The fighting continues. Archers shoot and miss or fail to wound. The melee surges back and forth with both sides winning and loosing in turn but failing to wound. Until finally….

…. Gazbag cuts down Cailon! The morale of the two remaining Elves drops. One breaks and flees… the other decides discretion is the better part of valor and withdraws. The Taken have been victorious but the Elves have slain the Barrow Wight, a victory in its own way.

A very interesting match. We decided to adjust the usual Seize Ground scenario to reflect the usual haunted ruins rules but added a narrative twist by making it the same Barrow Wight as the previous narrative scenario. We decided as winner of the scenario to allow the Taken to have the loot roll but this resulted in me rolling a 1 which was merely trinkets on the battlefield worth 1 Influence Point. I was disappointed because I really wanted the dagger or sword that had been available.

For Influence, my wife got three as she was disadvantaged by 15 points and lost the scenario. So a total of 5 but she spent 3 in an unusual way, as you will see below.

I received 5 Influence Points, 4 for winning the scenario and the one bonus for loot. Bringing me to 6. I spent three for a recruit, used my rallying horn, spent one influence more and got another Spectre. I then gave the new Spectre, who is named Barahil and Gazbag shields. This left me with zero Influence Points.

For injuries we both got off lucky with each of us only having one warrior injured, Ufgaz for me and Orcondil for my wife. However, Arnakhor picked up a leg wound… which could be bad news in the future.

Originally we had planned to use the Johnathan Baker house rules in regards to rolling for injuries for horses but we decided to scrap that as it messed too much with the points values of heroes given our in-house rules on experience gain and points values.

One thing that irks me more than my wife is how wargs are quite independent in the game but horses are not. We have yet to decide on any house rules to adequately address this. My wife favors more realism for horses whereas I favor more epic fantasy storytelling with intelligent, independent warhorses. Too much influence from Robert Adams Horseclans books I think.

The Elves had Faeril level, and he rolled for +1 Fight bringing him to the maximum of 6. A worthy reward considering he slayed a Wight.

For the Taken, Nagduf and Gazbag leveled. Nagduf failed to achieve recognition unfortunately. Gazbag rolled +1 Courage bringing him to all of 3 Courage. Brave for an Orc I suppose and it fits the narrative since he charged an Elven hero alone.

Speaking of Elven heroes….

Picture the Elves of Lothlórien sitting around their campfire, tending the wounded and praising Faeril for slaying the Wight. They drink a toast to their retired leader Fingaerion. It is proposed that to honor both Fingaerion and Faeril the Company would henceforth be called Fingaerion’s Spear.

Limping into the light of the campfire Fingaerion smiles warmly to his friends, who in turn are surprised to see him. The Elf lieutenant begins, “I am honored by your choice of names. It is only fitting then that I continue to share our burden in this fight against the forces of darkness.” Seeing the continued surprise on the faces of the company. He continues, “But how, you wonder? The restorative properties of Elven Waybread is quite impressive.”

Considering we are still learning the rules I decided that had we fully understood the risk a leg injury presents to a hero there is a good chance I would have urged my wife to use some of her influence to buy Elven Waybread for Fingaerion. As it stands now she lost three Influence Points, Fingaerion sat out a game where he could have changed the outcome and he now still has a -1″ move leg wound. This seems fair and considering they are Elves we think it suits the overall narrative.

The next scenario will be “Show of Strength” where the leader who gets the most kills wins. It seems an appropriate scenario for the return of Fingaerion.

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4 Comments

  1. I’m really impressed by how the narrative of your battle companies is evolving with each battle. It is really cool to see and I’ve heard about these things happening in places like White Dwarf but to see it happening here feels more real and cool, if you know what I mean 🙂

    I’ll be rooting for the elves in the next battle as I am a bit of a fan of the pointy ears and now they have a cool name for their company too. It sounds like it will be another fun battle!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think I know what you mean and my favorite part of this game is how the narrative develops. How each character develops, some more than others, based on the weird experiences they have. It is all part random, part player driven but takes on a life of its own in ways that are impossible to predict.

    The big thing for me about sharing it on the blog though is knowing other people enjoy the developing story.

    Liked by 1 person

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