Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Happy Holiday from the Drunk Umber Hulk!

Happy holidays everyone!  I hope you all have a safe and fun holiday season.  May your presents be filled with gaming goodness and your bellies filled with tasty treats!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

OGRE Designer's Edition has arrived!

The box is humongous!
My copy of Ogre arrived about two weeks ago, I finally had time to open it up and put everything together.  Here are a few pictures of the box and the completed pieces.  I'll post some more pics once the wife and I play our first game!

The giant sized tote bag.

Its a thing of beauty!

I can't believe how big this thing is!

The non-3D playing pieces.

With the maps in the box.

The Ogre Garage.

My cat reacting to the size of the box!

**SPOILERS** Temple of Elemental Evil **SPOILERS**

I had a chance to get together with my old gaming buddy this weekend and smash out some more of the Temple of Elemental Evil.  We began playing six to seven years ago and get together when we can.  We were (and still are) living in different states and don't get to play very often.  When we started out we were using VOIP and a whiteboard program (before google+ became the way to play) and then fell into a once or twice a year in person session.  It felt good to get back to DM'ing, we last played about a year and a half ago so I was feeling a bit rusty at first.

This is the first time I have run the Temple as DM having previously played through it once before when I was a wee lad.  It's my favorite adventure of all time and it was really fun to spend all weekend rolling dice, eating pizza, drinking beers and embracing my inner geek.


The party:
Vallon - Human Fighter & Surly Bastard
Marhev - Human Fighter (my toon but being run by my friends girlfriend)
Jess - Human Cleric with a dark soul
Kaila - Elf Wizard (holds the record for most deaths)
Rahan - Elf Rogue (nicknamed The Finisher for his ability to drop baddies with his bow, after spending the entire fight missing them)

Things started with the party heading back to the Temple from Verbobonc, Jess (the lawful good cleric) wanted to sack Nulb and put the occupants to the sword but was dissuaded by her fellow companions.They made their way to the Water Temple as they had previously cleared out the entire third floor except for pool room. They were unable to figure out the acid pool and almost lost Rahan after he jumped in the acid but was able to climb out of the pool before melting into a puddle of goo.  After some general shenanigans they decided to move on and attempt the fourth floor of DOOM.  Over the next few hours they explored all of the rooms south of the main temple and found them all to be empty of creatures, leaving them mystified.  Near the main altar of worship a portal opened that cut off their escape and all of the monsters from the level began pouring out.  Darting down a side hallway they stumbled into the portal that lead to the Air Node.  I had hoped to drive them into the nodes, I'm not sure if my players would have volunteered to go through without a push so it worked out well!

Upon entering the Air Node they found themselves pummeled by flying debris and they sought cover.  Heading east they began working their way counterclockwise around the edge of the node.  They spotted a white dragon flying high above them giving them a bit of a scare.  Pressing on they entered a cave system and found a dead Cloud Giant, his body blasted by ice.  Pushing further into the cave system they encountered a Frost Worm and a vicious battle ensued!  Using its Trill ability the Frost Worm froze several of the party in place and proceeded to tear into the rest.  Kaila was killed (again) by the beasts breath weapon and was finally felled by Rahan The Finisher (after he missed multiple times during the fight).  My friend was pretty upset that Kaila died (again), shes already fallen behind in levels due to her previous deaths but he decided to try and save her by casting Gentle Repose until we could get her resurrected.

Feeling defeated the party moved on, much more cautiously than before as we were now lacking our wizard. Continuing around the outer edge of the node they came upon a large cave filled with a giant boulder field.  Shortly after they began to maneuver through the field a small white dragon flew from deep in the cave and glided out the entrance through which they had come.  Rahan donned his invisibility ring and scouted ahead while the rest of the party took refuge in the shadows of the boulders.  He discovered the dragons treasure horde and spent a few rounds picking through it hoping the dragon would not return.  He found several small items of value including a silver box with a aquamarine gem in it.  Returning to the party they realized the gem was the perfect size to fit into the golden skull they were in possession of (the Orb of Golden Death).  Seizing the gem from the box they were all suddenly ripped from the Air Node and deposited in a splash into the center of the Water Node!  Shocked and surprised this is where the adventure ended as we were all a bit tired.

I am looking forward to playing again but it will probably be some time.  My players were sure that the fourth level was the final one and were surprised at the inclusion of the nodes.  They are slowly piecing together what they need to do to bring the temple low.  Next time should bring the conclusion to our many year adventure.  I'm looking forward to it!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Orb of Golden Death

For the last few years I have been running a 3e conversion the Temple of Elemental Evil.  It's the first and only campaign I have run in 3e and will probably never play 3e again once this adventure is complete. My feelings on 3e aside, I was looking around for a decent image of the Orb of Golden Death that I could print out for my players and was unable to find anything I really liked.  So I made my own version in Procreate on my iPad.  Above is a time compressed video of the creation of the drawing.

Our adventure will be wrapping up soon and once it does I will be making available all of the materials I used to run the Temple including the 3e conversion and the different play aids I used.  Much of this stuff was created by other people, I just pulled it all together and made some edits for my campaign.  If you have never had a chance to play the original Temple of Elemental Evil I highly recommend it, I have played once as a player and now a second time as a DM.  Its a classic adventure that is a blast!

Feel free to use the image below for your own adventures!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

New Barrowmaze Crowdfunding on the Horizon

Hey folks, 

I just wanted to pass along the news that Greg over at Discourse and Dragons has announced he will be running a new crowdfunding campaign for Barrowmaze Complete starting in January 2014.  This new book will combine the two existing Barrowmaze Dungeons into one mega-module and will include new material, art and layout.  The amazing Erol Otus has been tapped to do the new cover.

I already own both Barrowmaze and Barrowmaze II, they are both amazing products but I would be willing to contribute to a new combined module.  The best news for me is that he is currently working with the guys over at Otherworld Miniatures to produce a Barrowmaze box set, awesome news indeed!

The original announcement can be found here: Barrowmaze Complete

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Busy, busy, busy!

Heya folks!

Sorry for the lack of updates, I have been super busy.  I am back at school for the fall semester, taking classes in the evenings after work (math class.....bleh).  On top of full time work and part time school are all of my house projects and honey-do lists.  At some point I will get back to posting and will finish up the Men of Iron game I started, just not in the next month or so.

I have managed to squeeze in a little miniatures painting here and there, I'll try and take some photos and get them posted.  I hope you are all well and enjoying the fall weather!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - Update

At this point in the game I have caught up with my old posts from Consimworld. From here on out I will be playing the game as I post instead of just copying and pasting already completed turns.  What's that mean for you dear reader?  Well things are probably going to slow down a bit as far as posting turns as I need to play things out and take screenshots.  Its also been a while since I have actually played so I'm sure I will be spending some time with my nose in the rulebook.  

Please have patience, I intend to complete this entire battle.  I hope you all are enjoying it as much as I am!

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 13

Jean's troops continue to press the attack on the flank! Another retired longbow unit is eliminated as is the English standard! Both of the English wagon trains are destroyed resulting in an additional four flight points for the English. A French dismounted foot unit attacks once again and retires the English mounted unit. Give those men a medal! With the English standard being destroyed, the retired unit is instead eliminated! 

A French foot unit crosses the ditch and attacks Edwards mounted unit and becomes disordered for their trouble. A second foot unit also attacks across the ditch against another English foot and also becomes disordered. What a melee! What a mess!! The English are crumbling! 

The French are able to activate the Dauphin who rallies disordered units before play passes to the English on a failed Orleans activation.

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 12

Edward activates first. The mounted men at arms attack the advancing French foot unit and disorder it. The northernmost unit in Edwards command rotates and attacks the rear of the disordered French foot unit, and eliminates it! Salisbury fails his activation giving play to the French.

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 12

The attack on the right flank continues with Jeans troops pressing forward. Two of the retired units are eliminated, adding four points to the English flight track. A French foot unit swings to its right and attacks the English mounted unit from the flank for a disordered result. The three units closest to Jean all do nothing this turn losing their disordered status. The disordered foot unit wheels around and attacks the longbow unit and disorders it. Play passes to the English when the French fail to activate Orleans.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 11

Play passes to the now battered English after Dauphin fails his activation. Warwick begins the turn by moving his foot units and archers into position to try and stop the flanking attack. Edward fails his activation and play passes to French.

Here is an overview of the battlefield:

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 11

The French start their turn by activating Orleans and attempting to flank around the English longbows. The French do NOT want to advance across the swampy lowlands under fire from the English bows. 

Jean II activates next and continues his assault across the ditch. A disordered French foot unit attacks across the hedge and retires a disordered English foot unit. The line is broken! The French unit advances into the breach. Unfortunately the middle of the French line does not fare as well, smashing off the English they are disordered and driven back. At the far end of the line the French foot troops are more successful, eliminating a Crossbow and Hobilar unit and advancing into the English held territory. Vive la France! 

The English are now at 8 Flight points out of 30 while the French have 30 out of 45.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 10

Salisbury is activated first! The English longbows open fire and eliminate one disordered foot unit, retire the second and disorder a crossbow unit. Hurray for the archers! Salisbury's dismounted knights attack across the hedge and become disordered themselves! 

Warwick is activated, his units move into place to repulse the approaching French on the left flank.

C. de Buch fails his activation, play passes to the French.

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 10

The French start off on the right flank with King Jean's troops crashing into the English line. Attacks across the ditch don't go as well as the French would have hoped with four French units disordered and one English unit disordered. The longbowmen at the corner of the hedge behave heroically disordering two of the advancing French foot units! 

The French successfully activate Orleans who closes on the left flank. Activation of Dauphin fails passing play to the English.

Here's an overview of the battlefield:

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 9

King Edward and his men pull back across the ditch hoping it will help them. The disordered mounted unit did nothing this turn, so it loses its disordered status. The English successfully activate C. de Buch, he pulls two men-at-arms units from the front line to help support the right flank. The English fail their Salisbury activation so play passes to the French.

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 9

Jean II presses the advantage and his troops press forward. The French line crashes into the disordered and dismounted knights and retires them from the field! A second unit moves in to attack and gets no result against the footmen. The rest of the line surges forward hoping to break the English! 

The French fail to activate Orleans and play goes to the English.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 8

Seeing the wave of French troops, Edwards orders a retreat to the ditch where they have a defensible position. Unfortunately most of the English troops do not have enough movement to cross the ditch! 

Play passes to the French when Salisbury fails his activation.

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 8

King Jean II advances! Three thousand French soldiers march across the field towards the wounded and disorganized English right flank. Will it hold?! We shall find out! 

The French fail their activation of Orleans and play goes to the seriously outnumbered English!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Board game replays

Heya folks,

At the top of the page I have added a new tab, it will take you to past replays of various games, much like I am now doing with Men of Iron.  The links lead to .pdf's I compiled once the games were done.  If anyone has problems viewing the links please let me know! 

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 7

Salisbury is activated and missiles rain down on the Genoese Crossbowmen and disorders them. A second longbow unit also fires at the same crossbow unit and eliminates them! More Crossbowmen are disordered as the Longbow unit holding the corner of the hedge open fires. The English attempt to activate Edward and succeed.

The dismounted men-at-arms advance towards the Genoese and take reaction fire as a result and are disordered. This allows King Edward to make a flanking run with his mounted troops, he charges into the crossbowmen! The already disordered crossbowmen are eliminated and Edward gets to continue his attack and shocks the dismounted men-at-arms for no result. More troops move up to attack the French footmen on their flank which disorders them and causes them to retreat one hex. The Hobilars fire their crossbows again and have no effect (again).

The light horse on the far right flank continue to attack the disordered foot unit for no result.

The English finish their turn by activating C. de Buch and pulling his troops back across the hedge so they can ready for the advancing French.

Play then passes to the French after the English fail to activate Warwick.

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 7

The French start their turn by activating Orleans and advancing forward. They are also able to activate Jean II and move him forward and then fail to activate Dauphin. Play passes to the English.

Here's an overview of the current battlefield:

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 6

Play passes back to the English, once again they activate Edward and continue the attack! The dismounted knights to Edwards left surge forward into the disordered French troops which forces them to retreat from the field. Edward then attacks the other dismounted unit and disorders it. English mounted horse move to the front line to help Edward and they smash into the enemy troops. Against the two dismounted units the disordered one is retired from the field and the other repulses the attack and disorders the attacking unit! 

The Hobilars move forward and fire their crossbows, for no effect. Light horse flank around the right and hit the dismounted infantry in the flank and disorder them. The English fail their activation of Salisbury and play passes to the French.

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 6

The French took a beating last round but they still have lots of troops left (although not all of them are currently on the field). Orleans has only a two activation, very low so I have been reluctant to roll him, but it looks like I'm going to need to start if the French are ever going to win this thing!

Orleans begins the French turn by advancing his troops. Next the French roll King Jean II and activate him. Jean has twelve foot units under his command, quite a large force. His troops advance on the English line.

Meanwhile, back at the front the Dauphin fails his activation roll transferring play to the English.

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 5

Edward is activated to start off the turn. Rushing to the kings aid the entire line surges forward and attacks! The two Hobilar units advance around the end of the flank, one dismounts while the other continues to move. The dismounted unit cannot fire this turn. Two units of English foot shock attack the French foot to Edwards left. The defending unit is disordered must retreat one hex and the attacking unit follows it. The mounted unit to Edwards right advances and shock attacks the French foot unit directly across from it and disorders the unit. Edward and his mounted unit then attack both of the disordered units. Both units are retired from the field and Edward advances! 

The French flight track is moved up two points. Also, the earlier Genoese Crossbowmen cannot rally and are eliminated due to SSR. This adds an additional two points to the French flight track which is now at twenty points. 

Salisbury is activated next. The disordered longbow unit does nothing this turn and losses its disordered status. One foot unit moves into position to plug the line. The second longbow unit fires across the hedges at the now out of command foot unit and disorders it. The English foot unit follows the longbow attack and attacks the now disordered unit and completely eliminates it! Two more points on the French flight track, who seem to been dropping like flies this round. The last English longbow unit fires at the Genoese crossbow unit across from them for no effect. Play passes to the French when the English fail to activate Warwick.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 5

The Dauphin leads the French attack this turn. A French foot unit advances and attacks Edward from the flank for no result. A second foot unit advances towards Edward and attacks the Kings unit and ends up disordered as it is rebuffed by the Kings horse. A third foot unit advances on the King and attacks once again for no result. The Kings unit has a -3 shock DRM making it very hard to disorder. The rest of the Dauphins units advance with one unit falling out of command due to range.

Saarbuken's unit generates a new leader and attempts to activate and fails, play passes to the English!

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 4

The English start off with Salisbury activated. The leftmost longbow unit does nothing for the turn and loses its disordered status. The longbow unit directly next to Saarbuken cannot lose its disordered status due to being directly next to an enemy unit, so they unleash a hail of arrows at the disordered leader and his horse. The unit is eliminated by the archers and Saarbuken must roll to survive and fails, he is killed in the field of battle! The last remaining longbow unit fires at the disordered crossbow unit and retires it from the field. The French have taken massive casualties this turn including the death of Saarbuken. The French are now at 15 flight points. Each turn they activate a 1d10 is rolled and added to this number, if it ever ends up higher than 45 the French flee the battlefield.

The English activate Warwick with no problems. Dismounted troops plug the hole in the line and a longbow unit fires at the disordered crossbow unit and retires them from the field. The French flight track is now at 16. The two leftmost longbow units on the left flank leave the cover of the hedge and advance on the Genoese crossbow units. They open fire from long range for no effect. C. de Buch is activated and continues his advance along the left flank. Play passes to the French after a failed activation of Edward.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 4

The French start their turn by activating Saarbruken. On the right flank one Genoese crossbow (CB) unit does nothing so they can lose their disordered status. The other crossbow unit other fires on the already disordered longbow unit for no effect. In the center of the line one Genoese CB unit losses it disordered status. The disordered English longbow unit is eliminated, adding two to flight total for the English. The second English longbow unit that was fired upon is disordered. 

Saarbruken and his MAA prepare to charge the disordered longbow unit on the right flank! The charging unit triggers reaction fire from the LB unit, they unhorse the charging unit! The now dismounted infantry continue the attack as footmen and crash into the longbow unit for no effect. The line holds! 

The French attempt to activate the Dauphin and succeed. They continue their march towards the right flank of the English. Play passes to the English after a failed attempt to activate Jean II.

Here is an overview of the battlefield at the end of the turn:

Battle of Poitiers - English Activation 3

The English start the turn by activating Edward, the line must hold! The English footmen shock attack across the ditch in an attempt to drive off the French MMA, they obtain no result as the melee continues. The English mounted knights also shock attack (they cannot charge from one hex away) the French disordered MMA unit. This unit is retired from the field!

Edwards troops continue to advance to plug the hole in the line with one dismounted (DM) foot unit also shock attacking the French MMA for no result. King Edward and his English knights cross the ditch and charge the flank of the French MMA that is already under attack! The King and his horse crash into the flank of the French MMA, the unit is disordered and forced to retreat one hex.

The English continue their turn by successfully activating Salisbury. The longbow unit holding the corner could withhold its fire and remove its disordered status this round, but I am going to keep him disordered and fire as the disordered MMA unit as it is just too juicy to pass up. Arrows rain down and eliminate the disordered French MMA. Cheers rise from the English line! Three flight points are added to the French. A second longbow unit opens fire on Saarbruken and his horse for no effect. One last longbow unit fires at some Genoese crossbowmen and disorders the unit taking no result from the Genoese return fire. 

The English decide to activate Warwick but the French try to interrupt with their own activation. Hoping to keep the English from fixing their disordered troops the French attempt to activate Saarbruken and fail, giving the English a free activation. The two dismounted troops under Warwick both remove their disordered status and two longbow units open fire. One English longbow and one Genoese crossbow unit end up disordered. The English fail to activate C. de Buch and play passes to the French.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Battle of Poitiers - French Activation 3

The French decide to activate Saarbruken again to try and cause some casualties to the damned English. The disordered MMA unit does nothing this turn and becomes ordered once again. Two Genoese crossbow units advance and fire on the English. The first unit is disordered but is able to return fire at the same time, this disorders the attacking unit. The second Genoese unit opens fire as well, both attacker and defender are disordered from the attack and return fire. 

In the center of the field three Genoese crossbow units advance and fire on the dismounted foot units holding the center of the line. Both foot units are disordered! Two French MMA's circle around the right flank and prepare for a charge!

Both French MMA units charge the English line. Both attacks are into the flank (because I forgot to change the facing of the English troops, silly me.  We'll call them disorganized in the heat of battle). One attack is vs the French longbowmen and the other attack is vs the dismounted men at arms. Neither attack needs to roll for charge reluctance as neither defending unit is facing the attackers. 

The mounted attackers crash into the English archers through the hedge and retire the unit from the field. The second attack vs the men at arms across the ditch fails and the attackers are disordered. The English gain a flight point for the retired unit. 

The French decide to activate The Dauphin again to try and get him into the fight but the English player attempts to seize the initiative by activating Edward! The English fail their roll, allowing play to continue for the French. The French do NOT have to make a roll to activate the Dauphin, benefits of the English failing their activation! The Dauphins troops continue to advance. 

Trying for a third activation the French roll for Orleans, and fail. Play passes to the English dogs.