It's such a great figure I thought I'd share the finished result with you fine folk too!
Monday, 28 May 2018
Wednesday, 23 May 2018
“Come now, there isn’t much time!”
Aeon Flixx, Chronomancer, plunged headway down the dark passageway.
“Mistress, be careful!” wheezed Brunhilde, her apprentice, as she struggled to keep up. “You don’t know what’s ahead!”
“Oh I do!” Aeon briefly flourished the tattered parchment before continuing to rush forward. “Tonight is the Night of Lost Children! I have to time this correctly or-“
Her voice disappeared as she turned a corner and was gone.
Brunhilde puffed and redoubled her efforts, motioning frantically to the rest of the warband to keep up.
“I hope you know what you’re doing mistress!”
After taking quite a beating in the last game, Giles was still keen to keep playing and, as we had plenty of time, we decided on another delve into the Breeding Pits. With all the scenarios finished, we opted to try out the Ulterior Motives cards, but using the dungeon exploration rules (traps, secret passages etc.) After slightly rejigging the scenery we both drew a card, and…
So I had to place a pit in Giles’ half of the board and then get my wizard up to it by the start of turn five, in order to benefit from the magic of the Arcane Geyser. This would mean putting Aeon in the front line, rather than using wizard eye to do her dirty work for her…
Giles drew the ‘Once Bitten’ card, which meant that one of his soldiers had been chomped by a werewolf, which now lurked in the centre of the board. He had to slay the beast by a certain time or we’d have two werewolves on our hands.
Aeon’s team sallied forth from one of the doorways. Do you see anything wrong with this picture? Count the figures… I was toying with replacing the tunnel fighter with a mystic warrior and ended up putting both of them on the table! I only realised when I was going through the photos afterwards. Oops – my mistake!
Giles’ correctly sized warband deployed opposite. Using the treasure placement rules from Ulterior Motives meant that there was less treasure to play for, although Giles still had the reveal secret spell to help raise the stakes.
Aeon’s band moved forwards in short order, with the Chronomancer herself moving up the left flank towards the pit (from which the arcane geyser would erupt). Meanwhile an Amplipede scuttled into view.
Oh no, not again! The poisonous critter promptly damages both thug and warhound, which meant that to all intents and purposes they were wounded and down to one action each. Still, at least it kept the creature occupied while one of Aeon’s thieves nabbed a treasure.
This particular bug was eventually squashed, thankfully. With this little episode over the remainder of the warband pressed forwards. On the left flank, Aeon was getting rather close to the opposition.
Dangerously close in fact! The enemy warhound quickly pounced on her thug bodyguard, allowing Shazzam’s captain to advance menacingly on the wizard. Not being the best of fighters, she gulped and prepared for combat…
But help was at hand! Using his ‘sprint’ skill, Aeon’s own sellsword Grey Leopard raced to the rescue, alongside a thief, speeded up thanks to a fleet feet spell. The two captains clashed and Grey Leopard prevailed!
Phew – panic over! With Aeon out of danger, the enemy warhound was shot by one of the archers while the wizard continued to head for the geyser.
In the centre of the table, Brunhilde had been cautiously sneaking in with her men to avoid the attentions of the werewolf. Shazzam’s band were in more of a hurry and thus launched themselves at the beast!
The battle was swift and brutal, but they prevailed. Their reward was a nearby treasure token, a bounty for the creature’s head and experienced earned for fulfilling their objective.
But could Brunhilde’s men snatch their hard-won spoils from them? Not if the performance of the mystic warrior was anything to go by! The specialist was easily dispatched by a tunnel fighter – at least I had the right amount of figures now!
Not to be put off, the rest of the warband piled in to engage the enemy. For most of the day my dice rolls had been very jammy, but now the Dice Gods were beginning to redress the balance…
Still, perhaps a wizard eye would help matters a little. Aeon duly cast the requisite spell before hurrying off to reach the pit in time.
Just made it! The arcane geyser erupted from the pit, allowing the Chronomancer to collect the magical liquid that spewed forth. Unfortunately though, the thief that had scouted ahead was blinded by the eruption.
Thus fulfilling her objective, Aeon returned to the melee in the central chamber. Wounds were dealt and fighters fell, but all the while Shazzam’s band slowly gained the upper hand.
Grey Leopard, our gallant captain, fell under the onslaught! This left a single archer to try to mug the opposition of their loot. Brunhilde, having previously cast time store, tried to assist by stepping forward, missing with an elemental bolt, and then stepping out of the way again.
The warhound, poisoned but still with some fight left in him, attacked the withdrawing thug, hoping to persuade him to drop his treasure. Alas he failed to see the dog’s side of the argument and put him down.
It was all or nothing – even the apothecary piled in! The old sawbones didn’t last long against the enemy tunnel fighter though.
The archer was now facing odds of two to one, but bravely managed to dispatch the enemy ranger, who dropped the valuable werewolf head.
This left a gap in the melee for Aeon Flixx to step up with her trademark elemental bolt and blast the tunnel fighter!
The archer now pushed on the engage the fleeing thug, who, slowed down by the weight of the treasure, had been caught by the thug that had been poisoned by the Amplipede. The pair of them managed to defeat their adversary, thus nicking his loot. With this last throw of the dice, both exhausted warbands withdrew to count their ill-gotten gains.
A much more frantic game than last time, with risks taken by both sides in order to meet their objectives. I could have sat back once I had fulfilled mine, but decided to throw everything in to get an equal share of the treasure, and the werewolf head to boot. Luckily the survival rolls were kind, though I did have to replace one or two soldiers and also docked myself some gold as punishment for fielding too many figures.
Check out Giles' report at https://thelostcityofcarcosa.com/2018/05/28/fg-more-ulterior-motives/.
Check out Giles' report at https://thelostcityofcarcosa.com/2018/05/28/fg-more-ulterior-motives/.
Aeon Flixx’s new magic ring, forged in the heat of the arcane geyser, sparkled in the firelight as she turned her wrinkled hand this way and that to examine it.
She reached for the wineskin before slumping back in her armchair – the last few days’ adventures finally catching up with her.
Had it been worth it, she mused. Financially, yes, but she had discovered that the secrets of the Beastcrafters were not the answer to the terrible problem she would have to solve.
No, if the writings she had unearthed were correct, she would have to lead her band back to the surface and travel to that ancient holy place known by the barbarian tribes as The Hallowed… and there face the evil head on…
Tuesday, 22 May 2018
"Down here Mistress.”
Aeon Flixx, Chronomancer, ducked as she followed the squat form of the newly-hired tunnel fighter through a cleft in the rock. The fellow may have been short and stocky, but in these claustrophobic tunnels he was in his natural environment.
He paused, keen eyes scanning the crumbling tunnel ahead.
“Yes, this way Mistress.”
He continued forwards, effortlessly weaving between the piles of debris and filth that littered the tunnel floor. Aeon followed as best she could while behind her, Brunhilde the apprentice cursed, swore and tripped as she forced her lumbering frame past the obstacles.
“Damn this – begging your pardon Mistress – accursed hole!”
“Nearly there dear,” Aeon whispered, “soon we’ll find what we’re after.”
The tunnel opened up into a larger space. Water dripped from the dark ceiling onto fragments of old mosaic, the tiny tiles crumbling as they trod on them. The tunnel fighter stopped and listened.
“I hear others Mistress. People, not monsters…”
Aeon sighed wearily. “That troublesome Illusionist again no doubt. Very well, let us see what’s to be done…”
And so we reached the last scenario of the expansion, the eponymous Breeding Pit! This was another scenario where no random monsters were rolled for when treasure was taken, but instead they were rolled for at the end of each turn. What horrors awaited us?
A slight rearrangement of the previous set-up to represent the long-lost laboratories of the legendary Beatcrafters. This was an important game, for post-game, one treasure could be exchanged for the fabled Book of the Beastcrafter – the first step in mastering such ancient knowledge…
Aeon’s warband fanned out from their entrance. Aeon took the right flank, down which the other end of the board could be faintly made out. Brunhilde took the centre while Grey Leopard the Captain held the left.
Shazzam! and his bunch of reprobates deployed diagonally opposite, splitting his force into two. With the reveal secret spell in his repertoire, he had at least one easy treasure in front of him.
Aeon led her team down the right flank, sending a thief forward towards a treasure token whilst casting wizard eye into the gloom ahead, covering the treasure that glinted there in the shadows.
Brunhilde’s team approached the central chamber, but a slithering sound behind them caused them to pause. Hidden behind a wall, an Ampilpede scuttled out of a drain and headed towards them. The denizens of the Breeding Pits were stirring.
Both warbands jockeyed for position, heading for treasures but generally avoiding each other. Brunhilde sent a thug and the warhound back to attack the Amplipede, but the creature bit back and slew the thug! At the other end of the board, another beast roared – a white gorilla no less…
Grey Leopard the captain followed the tunnel fighter into the central chamber. Through an archway he could just about make out Shazzam’s pointy yellow hat. The sellsword drew his bow and fired… Down went the wizard!
As the opposition reeled from this blow, their problems were confounded by the arrival of another Amplipede, which had crawled out from under some rocks.
The enemy treasure hunter paired up with a thug to claim a treasure chest. Unfortunately this happened right under the gaze of Aeon’s wizard eye. One elemental bolt later and the treasure hunter was zapped.
Brunhilde continued to move forward in the centre, despite the slithering Amplipede somewhere behind her. She also cast wizard eye to cover her advance. (Yes, I still have to make another wizard eye marker!)
The Amplipede, having had it’s fill of thug burger, decided to try warhound sausages instead. This little beastie was proving to be one tough cookie… However this little hiccup aside, I was doing rather well, rolling more 20’s than was decent.
More creatures loped into the arena behind the wizard formerly known as Shazzam’s warband – this time a Gnoll templar and thug. One of the opposing thugs (having dodged a mind control spell, the scroll of which Aeon had been saving for just such an occurance) decided to nab the loot dropped by his treasure hunter comrade, only to step on some caltrops, reducing his movement.
On the right flank, the limping thug attempted to haul away the treasure, only to be confronted by Grey Leopard. Meanwhile the Illusionist apprentice foolishly stepped into the gaze of Aeon’s wizard eye and paid for his impertinence.
With their tails up, Aeon’s warband pressed forward, taking the fight to the beleaguered and now leaderless opposition. The tunnel fighter quickly dispatched the enemy warhound, covered by an archer.
Meanwhile Grey Leopard took on the crippled thug and, kind chap that he is, relieved him of his burden. With their masters stricken and wandering monsters lurking around them, the opposing warband decided to withdraw from the field, leaving it, and four treasures, to Aeon Flixx.
This was a very quick game as the Dice Gods were very much in my favour (as evidenced by Giles' report at https://thelostcityofcarcosa.com/2018/05/23/fg-the-breeding-pit/). As such the wandering monsters didn’t really get the time to pose much of a threat, which is something to be thankful for! The Dice Gods were less kind to Giles, so fair do’s to him for wanting to play another game, rather than sulking and packing away his toys, which is what I usually do when I roll poorly!
“What I don’t understand Mistress, is, with all the mysteries of the Beastcrafters laid bare before us, why didn’t we plunder their knowledge for ourselves?”
Aeon sat back in her armchair and studied her apprentice’s enquiring face. Detecting not a speck of artifice, she smiled.
“Beastcrafting is powerful magic – perhaps too powerful. When it came down to it, I decided that meddling with the laws of nature in such a way… Well, let’s just say I don’t think the end really justifies the means… And besides, are fangs, claws and the ability to lick your own genitals really a good look?”
She reached for the wine bottle and poured herself another generous measure.
“Fear not though. We have earned a pretty pile this day. Now drink up dear, for tomorrow we must go down the pits for one last time.” She drained her glass. “Time being of the essence…”
Monday, 21 May 2018
Aeon rushed through the snow to the stricken figure. There was no mistaking it – the apprentice whose corpse she had just sent off to be buried was lying prone before her, breath shallow but still alive.
“Y-you didn’t have to l-leave me mistress…” the girl muttered.
“B-but I saw you fall! You die-“
Aeon’s words froze. Snowflakes shifted sideways as time rearranged itself.
The Chronomancer frowned, her senses slowly adjusting to the time shift. Surely Brunhilde was dead? And yet…
“Hmm, I suppose the Sisterhood of the Pendulum have received my payment then…” she murmured, before the new reality snapped into position and all thoughts of death were forgotten.
With the latest royal wedding due, it was time to do what all right-minded men do – play with toy soldiers and try to ignore the whole malarkey.*
Therefore I invited Giles round to finish off the Breeding Pits scenarios, starting with ‘The Rats in the Walls’.
I set up the table with passageways surrounding a central chamber. In addition to hiring
the same a new apprentice, I had also
splashed out on a captain – one Grey Leopard – armed with a sword, dagger and
bow and clad in leather armour.
Aeon’s warband entered the scene through one of the entrance doors (me doing it right this time) and immediately espied a treasure in front of them. However they knew they had to be careful, for all around them tiny malevolent eyes watched and small but sharp claws scrabbled on the stones.
Diagonally opposite Aeon’s band, Shazzam! the Illusionist and his crew were also in search of treasure. With his fool’s gold spell successfully cast, there were seven treasure tokens on the table, but only six to collect.
A treasure token was grabbed and a giant rat appeared. No random creature rolls in this scenario, just a giant rat spawned whenever a token was claimed and also at the end of each turn. I was hoping that I had enough model rats…
As one of Aeon’s thieves moved up to claim a treasure, the Chronomancer cast wizard eye into the central chamber, where another treasure lay waiting to be grabbed.
Another rat scuttled onto the table, heading for Shazzam’s captain as he escorted a treasure-carrying thug. Now was a good time for me to roll a 20… Nope – the captain was victorious.
Another rat was cornered by the Illusionist’s apprentice and his thug bodyguard and another round of splat the rat ensued. There would no doubt be many more!
Aeon’s captain, accompanied by a thug, reached the central chamber and claimed the treasure, causing the rodent sleeping under it much annoyance. Needless to say it expressed it's displeasure by attacking the pair.
While in a nearby cul-de-sac, a thug and an archer disturbed yet another rat while they rooted around for loot. However it was soon put out of it’s undoubtedly miserable existence.
One of the thieves also got her hands on some loot, which brought forth yet another rodent. Aeon’s warhound came sniffing along to help out.
Most of the rat infestation was being efficiently dealt with, but not in the central chamber, where the luckless infantryman was being chewed by the little terror, despite having the captain and thug in support.
On the opposite side of the table, an enemy thief was also having a hard time dealing with rats, but managed to prevail in the end.
Shazzam shouted out encouragement as his captain and chums dispatched another rat. The Illusionist was busy enchanting his soldiers’ weapons while my Chronomancers were casting fleet feet on anyone they could.
Behind Aeon’s lines, another rat was clawing it’s way out of the stonework. The Chronomancer’s band had some treasure in their possession, but could they get it out without the rats converging on them?
Things were hotting up in the central chamber. In addition to the stubborn rat, our heroes also had to deal with the opposing warband, who were pouring into the room, with their warhound and treasure hunter as vanguard.
Meanwhile the newly
hired resurrected apprentice Brunhilde
blasted the lurking rat with an elemental bolt, keeping the line of retreat
clear - for now at least.
To my left, an archer and apothecary moved up to grab another treasure token, but POP! It disappeared. Yet again they had fallen foul of the fool’s gold spell.
Thieves and warhound killed the rat that was menacing them, ensuring that another treasure was secure. So far I was rolling reasonably well and had managed not to get anyone killed.
In the central chamber the troublesome rat was killed. Just in time too, for the enemy was charging in! Should they stay and fight, or withdraw to protect the hard-won treasure?
I opted for the latter, leaving the wounded infantryman to slow down pursuit as the thug dragged away the loot, covered by the captain. To one side, Aeon stood ready to work her magic.
ZAP! The Chronomancer casts elemental bolt through her wizard’s eye. Sound’s painful – and it was - for the enemy captain at least. That evened up the balance of power in the central chamber.
The rest of the opposing warband was faring a little better, splatting rats wherever they popped up. This kept their lines of withdrawal clear of rodents.
With the enemy captain down and the treasure safe, Aeon’s sellsword charged back into the fray to aid the embattled infantryman. The hammer-wielding soldier went down, but not before the enemy warhound was wounded.
More rats were scrabbling through the ruins to attack both sides. We had to be careful that they didn’t get together and start outnumbering us…
A rat landed at the feet of the Illusionist as he directed his treasure-laden soldiers off the board. Luckily we are both rolling well enough to fend the critters off, despite the odd wound here and there. (Oops, looks like I've got a little repair work to do on that wall.)
In the central chamber the opposing treasure hunter was zapped by Aeon. Both she and her apprentice were Spellcasting like experts this time!
This left Grey Leopard the captain to deal with the wounded warhound and any other reinforcements that risked getting in the way. Happily (and contrary to my usual experience with captains) the sellsword dispatched them with aplomb.
Feeling perhaps rather overconfident, the sellsword raced on unsupported, pursuing the opposition as they withdrew with their treasures.
Grey Leopard paid the price for his hubris, being downed by a lowly thug. This gave some breathing space, while Aeon had to deal with more rats cutting off her escape route.
The Illusionist, free from the presence of Aeon’s soldiers, was able to take out any rodents in his way. By now the placement of the end-of-turn rats was rather predictable, with both of us dropping them out of sight at the rear of the other’s warband.
Both warbands began to withdraw, with rats being fought, or in Aeon’s case, blasted into deep-fried rat nuggets, as they went.
And a good job too, for the ever-increasing sound of angrily squeaking rodents was filling the chambers and passageways as the furry tide began to grow. You can only prevail against them for so long!
A very fun game (Giles' report can be read at https://thelostcityofcarcosa.com/2018/05/21/fg-the-rats-in-the-walls/), with honour pretty much even at three treasures apiece. Aeon and Brunhilde did themselves proud with the spellcasting, even if it was a rather unimaginative sequence of elemental bolt when a target presented itself, and fleet feet if not. Regardless, the rats would have to find something else to gnaw on this day.
“Ugh! Horrible nasty things!”
Brunhilde grumbled as she frantically brushed the rat droppings off her robes.
“Y’know, I’ve never been adverse to small furry creatures until recently.”
Her mistress looked up from the ancient parchment she had been engrossed in.
“Hmm? Maybe you had a nasty encounter with them in a past life…” She grinned. “Alas that won’t be the last time we go down into the depths, for I think I’ve found what I’m looking for.”
“Indeed my dearie – if I’m reading this correctly, I know where to find the fabled Breeding Pits…”
*Of course that’s not at all correct. We wished the happy couple all the very best, and celebrated their nuptials in the classiest way possible.