Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Runequest - Ducks.

My first encounter with the most unusual fantasy race in Runequest, if not any fantasy game, was with the Duck. These strange chaos tainted creatures that inhabited the world of Glorantha were always guaranteed to split a group of players.
A Duck Guardsman.

Our long standing main GM, Rob, would never put up with such nonsense these days but it is probably thanks to him that my odd obsession with anthropomorphic ducks (and intelligent Baboons) first began.

It was at one of our early RPG sessions at the school games club back in the 80's - Robs brother Andrew (the Zombie Master) was one of the first people I know that was into RPG's and had obviously influenced Rob into getting into the hobby. For this reason, he tended to be the main GM for any of the earliest games we played, and though we all run the occasional game now its something that effectively continues to this day. Anyway, we were a few sessions into one of the first RPG's I had ever played that went by the name Runequest. This is still one of my favourite fantasy settings - Glorantha was a strange world with a unusual but convincing pantheon of Gods and a refreshing set of creatures that inhabited it, such as the man herding Morokanth, the belligerent Scorpion Men and the faintly magical Dragonewts. I still think the Broo are one of the finest monsters in any game. More on them another time.

I remember my first character, who had become a Storm Bull initiate (after I read 'Cults of Prax') joining a party of adventurers. In one of the scenarios we had entered a small town called Apple Lane (the legendary boxed set scenario book) and had become involved in assisting one of the local store keepers, Gringle the pawnbroker. Gringle was having issues with a local group of intelligent Baboons who wished to take back an item of some value they insisted belonged to them. I remember thinking, I like this, that's interesting, intelligent Baboons...
The Apple Lane Map.

It was during negotiations with Gringle that we first met his devoted 'manservant' Quackjohn. At this point Rob explained that Quackjohn was a Duck. He was apparently likeable and chatty. He sung when drunk, was a superb cook, and never questioned his master's ways. He had worked with Gringle since they settled in Apple Lane some 37 years before. I can vaguely remember being really amused by this - a duck? In a fantasy game?? I went with it and Quackjohn proved himself in the ensuing action.

Apple Lane Scenario Booklet.

I don't remember the exact details anymore but suffice to say we had a desperate combat against some very angry Baboons led by a fierce armoured one named Kochaz, tearing their way through the shops roof and windows followed by a suprise attack by a Dragonewt, Xarban, and his motley band of followers. This outlaw band had apparently signed up to assist Kochaz on the promise of some spoils from the shop. Among them were a big centaur, a couple of smaller Dragonewts and another Duck! We ultimately managed to fight off the attackers and reap the benefits. The short campaign eventually faded but I was left with a lasting interest in these odd little characters.

Duck Tower.

Several Duck characters appeared in later games (mainly with another GM) usually as sidekicks to the main adventurer group. There were such legendary folk as Delbourne, a Duck trader who thought of himself as something of a noble and then a favourite of mine, Svendrake, the Humakt worshipping, slightly overly aggressive bodyguard and assistant to Rex Troya, a Human Praxian Runepriest. Ducks and Baboons also made an appearance in our Warhammer campaign. Two notables include Quackbill Featherwing, a Duck adventurer and his faithful friend, Ragill the Baboon, who obtained kinship with the Dwarfs of Aruk Khabar and later a place in the court of King Dumin Ironbeard after helping to save Stonebrow Palace. Others were Blazemane and Darktail.

I have made a few Runequest 'Duck' related purchases over the years and one of my first was the Duck Tower book above. I never had the chance to use it but enjoyed the read. My favourite purchase of all is below - being a fan of Runequest figures I picked up a few of the old Citadel boxed sets of miniatures. One of my favourite figures was always the Duck Adventurer, who went on to represent most of the characters mentioned above. Over time I somehow managed to get hold of more of this figure and now have four! My proudest purchase was the Runequest Hero Duck that was originally a promotional item. I must get around to painting them all...

Svendrake the Duck and his bodyguard.

Ducks still seem to make the occassional appearance in Gloranthan stories. The last Mongoose Publishing version has them refering to themselves as Durulz and they certainly seem to have a less 'Howard the Duck' look to them. Will they ever make another appearance in one of my games? Who knows. It would depend on the players to start with but I like the idea of revisiting an old Runequest haunt to see what happened to old Quackjohn...

"Runequest Ducks look like the most perfect form of sentient life ever created by the gods."

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Barbarian Shaman and Elf Sinister.

Picked these two chaps up at SELWG for 25p each, what a bargain! Nice couple of figures from Grenadier.

They are the Fantasy Warriors Barbarian Shaman (1442d) and an Elf Sinister Spell Caster (3122b) from the Fantasy Legends range.

Friday, 21 October 2011

Ars Magica - The Covenant of Sirius (Covenfolk & Grogs)

The Covenant of Sirius - Autumn 1222 (Grogs)


Brother Owen           (Itinerant Preacher)
Margaret                 (Autocrat & Steward of Sirius / educated, attractive woman)
Nasir                      (Iberian Moor / Nobleman)
Anseau                   (French Knight / pious / good reputation)
Thibaut                   (Rogue / daring / avaricious / sociable)
Lucien                    (Storyteller / Bard / Sidhe blood)
Kurt                       (Bookbinder / Librarian / Scribe)
Paul                       (Ropemaker)
John                       (Farmer / Husband of Alice)
Alice                       (Farmer / Wife of John / Head Cook)
Jake                       (Young son of John & Alice / has small horns / 8yrs old)
Harland                   (Farmer / Husband of Katherine)
Katherine                (Farmer / Wife of Harland)
Bartholomew            (Farmer / Husband of Isabella)
Isabella                   (Farmer / Wife of Bartholomew / Ale Wife)
Gilburt                    (Farmer / Eldest son of Bartholomew & Isabella / 17yrs old)
Geoffrey                  (Son of Bartholomew & Isabella / 15yrs old / wants to join Turb)
Beatrice                  (Eldest daughter of Bartholomew & Isabella / 9yrs old)
Edelina          (Youngest daughter of Bartholomew & Isabella / 6yrs old)
Gwyn                      (Drayman)
Meredith                 (Spinner / Weaver / Wife of Gwyn)
Efa                         (Daughter of Gwyn & Meredith / 8yrs old)
Pavia                      (Maid to Sarimarcus)
Angarad                  (Maid to Modestus)
James                     (Tinker / ex-thief / one ear missing)
Waldram                  (Blacksmith / missing eye / tattooed / has second sight)
Thomas                   (Charcoal Burner / reclusive hunchback / immune to fire)
Brethoc                   (Head Miner)
Gryffydd                  (Miner)
Meurig                    (Miner)

The Turb

Agnes                     (Turb Captain / female warrior / known as ‘’Nest’)
Matthew                 (Turb Sergeant / Giant blood)
Hywel                     (Turb Sergeant / ex-crusader / proud / determined / reckless)
Dafydd                    (Turb Warrior / Shield Grog / berserker)
Scully                     (Turb Warrior / ex-bandit / loyal and brave)
Baran                     (Turb Warrior / ex-bandit / can be a coward)
Abelard                   (Turb Warrior / hygiene problems / brave and competent soldier)
Osgood                   (Turb Warrior / drunkard)
Treddian                 (Turb Warrior / poor memory / carefree / tough)
Rhodri                     (Turb Warrior / Archer / wrathful / scarred face)
Dunstan                  (Turb Warrior / Scout / loner with dog companion)
Étienne                   (Turb Warrior / French ex-crusader / brave / incomprehensible)

The Graveyard

Martin                     (Turb Captain / ex-bandit) (killed by the demon Samuel)

The Lost or Missing

Samuel                   (Shield Grog of Sarimarcus) (a demon in human guise)

Ars Magica - The Covenant of Sirius (Magi & Companions)

The Covenant of Sirius - 1222

The Magi

Cornelius                 (Bonisagus / Terram)
Malius                     (Verditius / Terram)
Sarimarcus              (Jerbiton / Corpus)
Modestus                (Guernicus / Mentum)
Magunnus                (Flambeau / Ignem)
Jagd Todtenbruch     (Tremere / Aquam)
Arcavia Abandonata  (Ex-Miscellanea / Herbam)


Arvalis                    (Filius Malius / Carpenter / deaf-mute)
Lynette                   (Filia Sarimarcus / Daughter of Margaret / 10yrs old)
Balthasar                 (Persian / 16yrs old)


Lord Oswald of Wight (Nobleman / Knight / Head of Covenfolk)
Valeray                   (Bard / Sidhe blood)
Cadwallen                (Hunter / Woodsman / Goblin blood)
Hugo Jager              (German mercenary)

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Battle of Glenmore Gulch.

Played an impromptu Warhammer 40k battle and thought I would post a few pics. This is actually the first time I have played 40k (the other players are all 'veteran') but I enjoyed the game and the carnage that took place!

The Battle of Glenmore Gulch centred around the discovery of an ancient Terra Artefact discovered in the ruin of a long lost city known as Glenmore. Four opposing forces (Orks, Ultramarines, Renegade Marines and Tyranid) met on the desolate battlefield that was to become known as 'Glenmore Gulch' from that day onwards...

The Tyranids were the first to arrive and half their force led by a Carnifex moved quickly to the small valley where the ancient tek lay.

Tyranids in the Gulch.

An Ultramarine 'Devastator' unit dropped to a nearby high building to the north-west of the battleground an set up a defensive perimeter. The Tyranids were quick to notice and immediatelly attacked with a Hormagaunt horde with a Trygon and Raveners.

Ultramarine Devastators set up position as the hive approaches.

Raveners attack Brother Howard in the Ironclad Dreadnought.

Meanwhile at the other end of the battlefield Renegades had arrived and began to assault the Ork scout force assembling nearby. Rumour had it these Boyz were being led by Boss Zagstruck but he was nowhere to be seen.
Renegade forces move into battle.

Da Boyz look on at the oncoming enemy...

Back on the other side of the Gulch, as the battle continued between the Ultramarines and Tyranids, a Genestealer Brood, led by a Broodlord, appeared behind the Marines defensive position! The Trygon made short work of the Ironclad Dreadnought. Brother Howard shall be remembered for his bravery.


The Trygon attacks.

The Genestealer Brood quickly rushed forward, making short work of the Ultramarine Whirlwind and Land Speeder that had been decimating the Tyranid Hormagaunts.

Genestealers destroy the Whirlwind...

...and the Land Speeder quickly follows.

In desperation, Captain Danziger an his squad disembark their transport to face the oncoming Genestealer horde like true 'Battle Brothers' shoulder to shoulder and face to face with the enemy...

Captain Danziger and troops disembark.

Back on the other side of the field, as the Renegade Marines began their confident advance, destroying the building they were assaulting and killing many of the Orks within - Boss Zagstruck suddenly appeared from the darkened skies to wreak terrible damage on the Land Raider! All Renegades opened up on the Boss and his Boyz wiping them out. The joy was to be short lived as a huge Ork Battlewagon rolled up in close range to the Renegades right.

The Land Raider is crippled by the Boss.

The Mighty Ork Battlewagon arrives!

The 'Fearsum Enjin'.

The Ultramarines were faring badly at this point - many of their vehicles lay in ruins and several Marines were dead. The Grenestealers and Broodlord were relentless in their attacks on Captain Danziger and though they fought bravely, eventually they fell to the merciless blows of the Broodlord. They died in glory! In an apparently foolhardy moment, a unit of Marines under Sergeant Lackland crawled from the wreckage of their transport to meet the Trygon head on...and succeeded! Stories shall be written of this moment!

Death of the Trygon.

The last working vehicle began to make a dash for the Gulch - the Artefact was they sped towards it from out of nowhere another Ork Battlewagon slammed into the side of the Razorback causing it to explode!

The second Ork Battlewagon appears!

The Ultramarines were now effectively out of the fight. The remaining three forces continued various actions across the battlefield. The Carnifex and its troops fought off a stinging assault by the Renegade Marines and stood within meters of the ancient Artefact.

View of the Gulch.

The Orks continued with their 'ram into everything' tactics and the 'Fearsum Enjin' rocked into the immobilised Land Raider. The Renegade Marines on board quickly disembarked to join battle with the Ork Boys that had begun to pile onto the battlefield...

The Raider is destroyed!

Renegade Marines disembark and prepare for battle.

Boyz leap from the 'Fearsum Enjin'...

...and battle is joined!

The Renegades are victorious - but at what cost?

Whilst this battle raged the second Ork Battlewagon moved to the edge of the Gulch and the Boyz onboard (very drunk by this point) piled out and ran towards the Artefact. The only resistance to meet them was a horribly wounded Carnifex that they soon put out of its misery and this also provided dinner for that night too.
Orks at the mouth of the Gulch.

The Boyz celebrate around the Artefact.

Little more could be done. Most forces had been decimated and the survivors retreated from the field. The Orks held the Artefact but didn't know what to do with it so they just used it to spit roast the Carnifex carcass...yummy!

In all a good fun game. We essentially played it as an 'annihilation' scenario with extra points for holding the Artefact at the end of the game. The Tyranid force did well and would have won on the sheer carnage it caused but the late arriving Ork Boyz managed to squeeze a draw by getting the Artefact. The Renegade Marines fared well but had to split their forces as they had few Orks to fight initially and the Tyranids were making progress to their side. They were best placed to stop the Orks but by then it was too late. The Ultramarines began okay but ultimately fell to the Tyranid assault.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

VBCW - Imperial War Museum.

Made a quick visit to the Imperial War Museum in London on Monday. Very informative and interesting day out. Took a few (not particularly good) pictures and thought these ones specifically would be of interest to the VBCW player...

The BUF Uniform.

A Thompson SMG and a couple of Mauser C96 Pistols.

A typical LDV Uniform.

The Standard British Infantry Uniform.

A couple of vehicles from WW1 that may be suitable for VBCW. Note the 'Battle Bus' in the background!

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Mystery Solved!

Finally managed to track down the identity of the 'mystery figure' - was looking at the Mega-Minis site as suggested by Jagatai (thankyou) and in a round about way decided I was looking for a Barbarian of some sort. To cut a long story short I found the Lost Minis website and searched for 'Barbarians' - first thing that came up was the 'Barbarian Personalities' set from Asgard, sculpted by Jes Goodwin (who did lots of Citadel stuff) and though there wasn't a picture I deduced he was 'BP8 Aurock Storrirkin' - Stuff of Legends fortunately had pic and confirmed this:

He is the one on the bottom left. Don't know why this bothered me so much but I was on a mission to find out - I am usually pretty good at identifying old minis and was determined to track this one down! Thanks for the suggestions guys.

Monday, 3 October 2011


Zombie Master of Deviant Design Deeds has recently been getting back into the old school fantasy stuff and has been trying to influence us into dusting off the old figures and getting a game of Mordheim going. To be honest I have never played the game - I used to play Warhammer Fantasy Battle right from the original 1st Edition back in 1983 (showing my age?) and played up to the 3rd Edition in the late 80's. We were always pretty 'freeform' in our interpretation of the rules and tended to make the most of the RPG element of the earlier version.

The amazing 1st Edition of WHFB.

I lost interest in collecting miniatures and wargaming over time and the figure collection, mostly admittedly unpainted, got thrown into a box and shoved into the loft to gather dust! More recently I was actually thinking of selling these but when I started to dig them out and show them to a couple of wargaming buddies I suddenly had a lot of fond memories come back and could even remember some of the names and characters particular figures had. Since being drawn back into the hobby, probably on the more historical side (see my Viking game Gjallarhorn, Colonial and our WWII skirmish games) I have to admit I am gradually getting drawn into the idea of playing a small skirmish fantasy game painting up a small warband. Mordheim looks to be the answer!

Mordheim Rulebook.

Mordheim is a skirmish game; set 500 years before the current time in the Warhammer world, where opposing factions fight in the ruins of a once-great city. Mordheim, once a great city capital of the Empire's most northern realm, was slowly enveloped by corruption. The only beacon of hope and sanity in Mordheim was the Convent of the Sisterhood of Sigmar. Weeks before the end of the year 1999, the symbol of Sigmar himself - the twin-tailed comet - had appeared in the sky. As midnight of the final day of the year approached, Daemons crept from the shadows and mingled with the throng, crying joyously and cavorting with man and woman alike. As the festival reached its zenith, the comet impacted upon the city. Only the Temple of Sigmar's Rock, home to the Sisterhood of Sigmar, remained unblemished. The city burned for weeks, the comet leaving the ruins of Mordheim covered in shards of solidified Chaos, soon to become known as wyrdstone. When Mordheim finally stopped burning, mercenary warbands from all over the Empire and beyond came in search of it, for it was said that wyrdstone can do anything; change your luck and fortune and turn lead into gold. Of course, Man was not the only race interested in wyrdstone, and many other creatures prowl the City of the Damned.

I have decided to go for a Dwarf Treasure Hunter warband as I love 'Stunties' but already am starting to feel I have created a rod for my own back. As tough as these guys are they are damned slow and very expensive! Anyhow - I have dug out a few appropriate Dwarfs from my old Citadel collection and here are a few pics of them...

Names, characteristics, equipment etc are all to be worked out but due to the cost it is unlikely that all of these stout fellows will be able to join the initial warband.

"Mhinz Abier!!" - "Zyor Rond!!"

Mystery Figure...

Can anyone help me with identifying the make of this chap below?

He has a vague 'fantasy viking' look to him and I have searched the web for some clues but still have no idea!

Any suggestions would be well appreciated :-)

Runequest Miniatures.

Runequest Boxed Set 6: Humanoids and Aldryami.

Picked up this from ebay recently. Couldn't resist as I always wanted this set but could never get hold of them back when they were released. I managed to get Boxed Sets 1,2 and 5 but missed out on a few of the others.

Complete list (from 'Stuff of Legends') -

Box 1: Human Adventurers
Box 2: Adventurers
Box 3 (v1): Trolls and Trollkin
Box 3 (v2): Attack of the Broo
Box 4 (v1): Beastmen
Box 4 (v2): Broo
Box 4a: Broo 2
Box 5: Dragonewts
Box 6: Humans and Aldryami
Box 7 (v1): Flying Creatures
Box 7 (v2): Demons

I never got hold of the 'Trolls and Trollkin' boxed set but over the years picked up most of the figures from it. Tempted to actually start painting them now...