Jun 262012

This is a battle report of a Song of Blades and Heroes game I played with my cousin almost two years ago. Good thing I took good notes and plenty of out of focus photos! Re-shot the photos the other day, so here’s the report finally! If you missed the first installment of Stillburg, you can read that battle report here. We’ve played the third game too, and I’m preparing the fourth (got all the zombies painted up, thanks to the LPL). Hopefully it won’t be two years until I get the report for the third game up!

SCENARIO 2 – Badwater Brouhaha

With the death of mayor Boismann, the heroes are not exactly treated as such in Stillburg. No matter how ill regarded his ways were, he was still a native resident of the town. None of the patrons at the local alehouse ”The Nag’s Head” seem to even remember ”good old Phoncible’s” conniving ways. Instead his heroic sacrifice is celebrated with ample amounts of drink and tales of how bravely he more or less single-handedly staved off the undead assault. 

Awaiting an official election, the town’s constabulary officer has been appointed interim mayor. Albert Adlercreutz is quite the opposite of the old mayor, being righteous and just, always willing to help those in need. Thus he has offered his assistance to the surving heroes.

During the battle for Stillburg, brother Wendel sensed necromantic energies surging through the forests from the northwest. Its exact origins could not be determined, but the good cleric and Duncan will set out on a scouting mission to see if they can ascertain the source of the undead threat. Being hell-bent on vengeance, Aldor is joining them – as well as a few marshal men spared from town defence. Adlercreutz can’t join himself, as he needs to oversee the building of further fortifications in town.

As the heroes set out they are intercepted by “Crazy” Macy Sonnenshield, local kook and volatile crackpot. She claims to have seen undead scout patrols to the north and offers to guide the party to the location. Reluctantly, Duncan accepts the offer.

Following the trail of the undead, on their second day of travelling the heroes come across Badwater, a small abandoned settlement. It used to be a prosperous little town, before the orc raiding parties put an end to that. Nowadays, it serves as a hideout for all kinds of unsavory types.

When the heroes reach the top of a small hill looking down on the desolate village, Macy spots a lone man running frantically along the road to Badwater. Just when he disappears into the shadows among the houses, a small band of pursuers emerge from the forest across town. With weapons drawn they make a halt and their leader steps forward, angrily shouting alien-sounding gibberish.

Duncan excitedly whispers to his friends – “By Gadd, those are words of the possessed! Clearly they are servants of Chaos, seeking to corrupt yet another poor soul. We must go forth to cleanse the tainted and…”

“It’s arseing Nipponese, you ignorant bigot twat! Man the zog up and let’s go!” Macy interrupts.

While making their way down the slopes, Macy explains (with a smattering of profanity) how the fleeing man apparently has something in his possession that the pursuers want. The Nipponese aim to retrieve it by force and bring it back to their employer abroad, accompanied by the poor man’s delicates.

Setup and special rules
Town-square with a forest stand in the middle. Deployment on opposing sides; Samurai in front of the northern town entry point, Heroes on the southern hill.

6 counters are placed: 2x Ninja, 1x Fatgit Rumblegut, 2x Nothing, 1x Fugitive. They must be 2 Long from any character, and at least 1 Long apart from each other.

When a model is in base contact with a counter, reveal it and place the spawn (if any) within a Long, but NOT within a Short. Ninjas may spawn in base-to-base contact with an enemy within their spawn range, carrying out an immediate ambush attack versus that model.

When the Fugitive is spawned, all other counters are flipped and spawned accordingly.

Find and keep the fugitive alive. (+2/-2 VP)
Slay the villains. (+1 VP for each 100 points)

From left to right: Militia man, Duncan Sandels, Macy Sonnenshield, obscured militia man, Brother Wendel, Aldor Berlepsch and a third militia man.

Warband status at the start of scenario: 269 pts, 2 VP
Duncan Sandels, human paladin (46 pts): Q3+, C4. Steadfast. 1 XP
“Crazy” Macy Sonnenshield (54 pts): Q3+, C4. Berserk, Capricious, Fearless.
Brother Wendel, human cleric (50 pts): Q3+, C2. Cleric. 1 XP
Aldor Berlepsch, human ranger (56 pts): Q3+, C3. Forester, Shooter: Long, Hatred: Undead. 1 XP
3 x Stillburg militia man (23 pts): Q4+, C3.

From left to right: Samurai leader, the two samurai and the half-orc guide Snivelsnout. Fatgit and the ninjas are all in hiding and not yet set up.

The opponents forces: 322 pts

Samurai Leader (96 pts): Q3+, C4. Combat Master, Fearless, Leader.
2 x Samurai (46 pts): Q3+, C4. Fearless.
Snivelsnout, half-orc guide (12 pts): Q4+, C2. Coward.
2 x Ninja (42 pts): Q3+, C3. Danger Sense, Stealth.
Fatgit Rumblegut, minotaur (38 pts): Q3+, C3, Big, Greedy, Savage.

The setup before any moves have been made.

After setting up we rolled a 2 for Macy’s Capricious skill, which changed her stats to Q2+, C3. Capricious is a house rule skill which means you roll a D6 prior to each game. 1-2: Q-1, C-1, 3-4: No effect and 5-6: Q+1, C+1. More on it here.

The heroes won initiative and moved forward to a low wall in pretty close formation, with two militia men guarding the rear (read: failing to roll more than one activation each). Macy scouted ahead, flipping the first objective marker of the game. As she crouched down to investigate some tracks, a warrior clad in black leapt silently from the shadows and attacked the forward-most militia man. The sneak attack made the militia man fall to the ground, albeit unharmed.


The Nipponese broke up and moved quickly towards two different objective markers. The samurai leader did not manage to keep up, but stayed within command range.


The next turn, the fallen militia man was joined by an ally and together they managed to put the ninja out of action, while the rest of the gang scrambled over the wall to join Macy.

In the center woods stand, one of the samurai flipped an objective marker which spawned Fatgit Rumblegut. For this game, we played him as a wandering monster and diced for control of him each turn. This first turn of his, he came under control of the Stillburg heroes. His first action (spawned models activate immediately, outside of normal turn order) was to charge a samurai close to another objective marker. The samurai was downed, but uninjured.


Finally, the half-orc guide moved to the south-eastern objective marker and flipped it. Another ninja appeared. I decided to place it near the heroes, hoping to draw their attention to him while my samurai dashed for the remaining three objective markers in the western parts of the board.


At the start of the heroes third turn, we once again diced for control of Fatgit. This time, the Nipponese won control of him and he charged towards the cluster of heroes in the north eastern part of town. Not being able to make contact, but still presenting a threat, he served his purpose as bait.


Unfortunately, the heroes were more skilled than expected. Aldor managed to score a hit which made the great beast fall to the ground. Macy quickly moved in for a finishing blow and Fatgit was out of the game. During the same turn, Duncan and Brother Wendel together made short work of the ninja.

The samurai leader finally managed to jump over the wall and bolster the quality of his troops. The two samurai made mad dashes for the north western and south western objective markers, respectively. None of them yielded any result, so the final marker was turned over and the fugitive Nipponese was placed on the board, at the edge of the western most woods. The cowardly half orc guide slowly made his way towards the center woods, most likely to hide.


The following rounds were quite uneventful mop-up rounds for the heroes. They methodically wiped out the whole warband (except the leader, who fled off the table) over the course of two or three turns. These were the final positions.


The fugitive turns out to be a Nipponese warrior monk named Isamu Takeshi (Q3+, C4, Combat Master, Dashing, Unruly) and through Macy’s (rather slim) interpreter skills he pledges his service until his life debt has been repaid. In his posession he has a magic armband granting the wearer immunity to ranged attacks by models cheaper than the wearer.


Rescuing Billy Crabcock: +2 VP
Killing more than 200 pts of enemies: +2 VP

Warband status at the end of the scenario: 335 pts, 6 VP
Duncan Sandels, human paladin (46 pts): Q3+, C4. Steadfast. 2 XP
“Crazy” Macy Sonnenshield (54 pts): Q3+, C4. Berserk, Capricious, Fearless. 1 XP
Brother Wendel, human cleric (50 pts): Q3+, C2. Cleric. 2 XP
Aldor Berlepsch, human ranger (56 pts): Q3+, C3. Forester, Shooter: Long, Hatred: Undead. 2 XP
Isamu Takeshi, human warrior (60 pts):  Q3+, C4. Combat Master, Dashing, Unruly.
3 x Stillburg militia man (23 pts): Q4+, C3.

  8 Responses to “Songs of Stillburg, scenario 2”

  1. Great to see the next instalment!

    Nice mechanic for Rumblegut and the hidden counters.

    When can we expect episode 3 ;)

    • Cheers Steve! I’m hoping to have the report for episode 3 up just right before your next Orcs Drift report. =P Care to make that a challenge? =)

  2. Glad to see a bit more SBH action from you, phreedh! Looks like it was a fun game. I’ll definitely be using that ‘flip the counter’ mechanic with mini-Rab in a game sometime soon.


    • Cheers mate! It feels good to psyche up for the next scenario by getting rid of this old millstone around my neck. Got scenario three more or less finished too, so expect another report in a day or two. =)

  3. Excellent report! I find it ever so inspiring to see such excellent scenery and painted miniatures coming together like this. It saddens me that I rarely get to game these days, but that’s what being an adult and having responsibilities will do for you, I suppose!

    • Bloody right there old bean, time is definitely at a premium. At least prolonged periods of time, like an evening where both opponents can get away from family and work obligations. It’s so much easier to steal an hour here and there for blogging and it sufficiently scratches the itch for a little while at least. I’ll be keeping an eye on you and your exploits over at Drums in the Deep. Keep at it mate!

  4. Its nice to see all of the various elements that you have been working on for so long coming to together for a game.

    Your photos are always so nicely lit, particularly the shots of the overall battlefield. Obviously doing a re-shoot helps that, but I could never manage it with the meagre lighting set up that I have. How many lights are you using? What power are they? Or is it just that you know what the hell that you are doing when it comes to photography?

    One bit of constructive criticism: although the card buildings look really nice and work surprisingly well with the true 3D terrain elements like the walls, the building edges are conspicuous. Some unsolicited advice: pick up a few felt tip pens and run the appropriate colours or neutral tones across the edges. It only takes a couple of minutes in front of the TV and it really makes a difference in my experience.

    • Cheers Paul, I’m rather satisfied with how the lighting is working now. I don’t have much in the way of “special” lights… I’m just using what’s in the room. In the ceiling we have two armatures with four spotlights in each. Only four of those spotlights reach the table (and are all pointed at the playing surface). In addition to that, I’m using an uplight lamp next to the table (bog standard IKEA stuff, probably with a 40W bulb – could be 60W though) and an additional clamp spotlight on the opposite side of the table. I don’t know much about photography, but enough to keep my camera on a tripod and use the timer, and have a long exposure time set. I don’t know all the technical terms for that though… =) I’ve also recently started experimenting with manually setting the whitebalance.

      I know I ought to fix those edges, you’ve been dogging me about it before. =) I’ll get around to it some day. I’m building more houses now (from actual old cardboard sheets, and not printed PDFs as the ones used here) to use in the next scenario we play (zombies wreaking havoc in Stillburg town).

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