Friday, June 15, 2012

Catching up, Running Away, & Lucky Rolls

Sorry that it's been a while since I blogged, but my account had "issues" that now seem to be resolved - crossing fingers. Plus I was gone for nigh 3 weeks with VA hospital stuff (small surgeries went well & they probably won't do the big one), visiting friends, going to Enfilade, & escaping the abuse at home.

YAY with the aid of Daryl (Painting & Rules), William & John (Terrain), the Kalvan of Otherwhen game went wonderfully & we won "Best of Show- period 3" at Enfilade!  WOOT! My Polemos Mythic Armies game went very well other than my beautiful Red Dragon getting rocked to sleep by stones from 4 Frost Giants.

The new "Blackpowder - Pike & Shotte" rules from Warlord Games came out & I've heard lots of complements regarding my maps that were used. I'm rather proud of them myself & I've been asked for more cartographic help for their next book! Plus I also finished another 10 maps for GHQ & their reprint of Microsquad and was asked to do the maps for the reissue of Microarmour.

SAGA from Gripping Beast is a really great game & my latest gaming focus. I'm almost done with a 6 point  Viking Army & then will do an Anglo-Saxon army (with an Uthred of course! - YAY Bernard Cornwell & his Saxon Shores series of books). So let me encourage all of you to take a look at this Dark Ages Skirmish game with some really innovative mechanisms. Daryl & I played two games & both resolved in less than an hour even just learning the rules. Fast but with a lot of depth. Heck Kevin could even inveigle me to paint an army for him if he'd play.

Also from the same Designers comes "Musket & Tomahawk" for those into the "Last of the Mohicans" and uses some similar design motifs.

Well the Catch-up.
After regrouping & recouping at Skaldby the party decided to help Skolmr fufill his family quest & set sail across the Baltic & journey to Permia. They play tag with a large warship that appears to follow them & hide up a river. A nervous night is spent when they see the ship pull to shore near them & they hear wolves howling in the distance. The stress ruins everyone's sleep & due to fatigue & misfortune by Tyr they manage to twist the boat & jam it crosswise in the river. Fortunately Tyr falls in the river. With much grunting & groaning they clear the jam & the ship floats out into the bay leaving Siv stranded on it. Skolmr, Tyr, Mar, & Arvarodd try to swim for the boat but nearly drown. Just then the large black warship appears at the mouth of the bay - more panic ensues, then an embarrassed hush as the warship sails blithely along taking no notice of them. HeHe! I'm so evil.

Eventually they recover the boat & set sail across the Baltic toward what is now St Petersburg but then was just a miserable little trading post. As they reach the coast of Finland the exhausted sailors camp on the shore where they make friends with Perun, a wandering Sami hunter & shaman (also known as John who will now join our group). Perun has wild red hair & an even wilder history that will reveal itself at inconvenient times. At last they reach the Trading Post and engage an older man to guide them to Permia - far inland to the Northeast. While waiting Mar gets involved working with some Warriors who are planning an expedition to Kiev to conquer & start a new settlement a new settlement there. They are lead by a big red haired man (another one) named Rhus!

No roads lead across the mosquito infested marshes & bogs of the wilderness so the party trusts to their guide to lead them through the maze of groves, islands, lakes, swamps, & morasses. One night they set up camp near a small island that appears to have large standing figures of wood on it.

Running Away Oops I mean Tactical Retreat
The party wanders out to the island that is surrounded by ancient worn wooden figures that are almost unrecognizable. In the center lies an obvious sacrificial stone altar at the base of a 20 foot tall pillar of four faces - each face has a different deity carved into it. One face is a bold looking fellow with a hammer & lightning bolts, another a very fecund woman with grain sheaves, another a very phallic male and lastly a dark & grim foreboding looking man. Tyr decides his best bet is to offend the most dangerous looking deity. Instantly the party panics into action. Most fleeing, but Arvarodd tries to appease the Gods by words. When Words don't work he thinks he can appease the Gods by hacking the penis off the ipyphallic God-figure & using it as a club. When that doesn't cheer up the Gods he decides to calm the situation by plunging his sword into the altar stone (don't ask me why he chose to do that he just did) & there it stuck rather like another legend that will take place in a few years on an island to the west of here, LOL) The ground begins to shake and in the distance a hut on stilts appears to be approaching them. The group decides to get gone from here now that they've stirred the hornets but Arvarodd stays to guard the rear & prevent the attack of a dark hulking (he swears it was a giant - add 10 feet & it might be a small one) figure bearing a flaming club. Suddenly a thick fog blankets everything & everyone - no-one can see any one else. The panic thickens like the fog. Everyone is lost as Arvarodd battles the (ahem) giant & manages to just barely pull his sword from the stone. (A damn 1% chance but he manages to do it - the miserable Sassenauk). Between his dickhead club & his sword & a clumsy move on the part of the (ahem) giant that breaks the large statue in half Arvarodd is triumphant. Meanwhile everyone else is lost and hearing voices of their loved ones in the fog. Some are fooled & some are not. Tyr manages for the first time to rescue his wife by pulling on the chain that she drags him around by. Skolmr falls into the trap of a Leshy -water spirit & nearly drowns. Siv falls off her horse & lands on her butt that knocks some sense into her head. Perun blunders lost until he finds a friendly tree that picks him up & rescues him & helps him conjure a warm southerly wind that will eventually disperse the fog. After much struggle Siv manages with an assist by Arvarodd to rescue Skolmr.

Lucky Rolls
The next morning they notice that the guide is gone & one of the apprentices they had brought along is floating dead in a pool - obviously lost to a Leshy. Of the guide no sign (nor of his horse) is ever found. The party blunders on until they come across a very large party (5 score) of local hunters & merchants holding two chained giantesses near a ferry crossing a river that flows north (that's a clue boys & girls). They are very lovely & about 20 feet tall & chained to large mill stones & 20 men each hold them down with cruel chains. When the part y approaches the ferry & tries to get past the group they are belligerently told to wait. Arvarodd decides to challenge the leader! Cool, Lucky Pierre Oops I mean Lucky Arvarodd decapitates the fellow in one shot. (Heavy & long sigh - there goes another dramatic situation with out even a speed bump). The followers shoot arrows & attack the Party. Arvarodd takes several arrows to the leg & falls. Eventually luck favors the party & Perun manages to hit several of the guards holding the Giantesses who then manage to free themselves & assist in the slaughter of their former captors. Fortune favors them & all are rescued & the local Wends driven off. Before disappearing into the river, the two sisters take their grindstones & give council and promises of aid to the party that helped free them. What will the future bring?

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