Archive for SAGA

Saga: Fantasy 2nd edition- Red In Tooth and Claw

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , , on April 26, 2018 by Sean

Just an update with more of my reskinned Saga battleboards for Warhammer Fantasy.

I keep to the rivalry theme here with the Beastmen and Wood Elves.

Beastmen: The beasts of Chaos use the Welsh rules, being lightly armored and loving skirmish and hit and run. They specialize in ambushing and ganging up on weakened opponents before closing in for the kill. The Welsh and Strathclyde factions getting folded together allows for mounted options. Normally the Beastmen lack any cavalry, but they do have the Centigors, so that works.

Warlords are Beastlords or Wargors, the strongest members of their tribe, gifted by the Gods; they are armed with throwing axes and/or javelins (or cast spells, representing Shamans). They can be ‘mounted’, representing a Centigor Lord or even a Dragon Ogre.

Hearthguard are the Bestigors, the powerful core of the tribe, wearing the best scavenged armor (though despite that they are -1 Armor in close combat); they are armed with throwing axes and/or javelins. They can be’ mounted’, fielded as Centigors.

Warriors are the Gors, the common members of the tribe. They generally lack armor or shields, preferring to travel lightly (-1 Armor in close combat); they are armed with throwing axes and/or javelins. Like the Hearthguard, they can be ‘mounted’ as Centigors.

Levies are the Ungors, the weakest members of the tribe. They are armed with throwing axes/javelins or bows.

Wood Elves: In the previous edition, I used the Normans rules, as I thought the brutal cavalry backed by dangerous shooting fit them. However, I have revised the board to instead use the Last Romans from the Viking Age book. The Last Romans emphasize a united front, with lots of shooting and elite cavalry, but more coordination between units than the Normans brought. The rules here sort of leave out some of the troop types that the Wood Elves could field but works well enough.

Warlords are the Kindred, leaders of one of the numerous kinbands. They represent Glade Lords, mounted on stag or Elven steed.

Hearthguards are the Nobles, elite guardians of the Wood Elf realms.  They can take to battle mounted as the Sisters of the Thorn or Wild Riders. Mounted Hearthguard can use either lances or composite bows. Alternately, one unit can be fielded on foot as Rangers, Dryads, or Wardancers; either way, they count as carrying great weapons (-1 Armor to both them and enemies in close combat).

Warriors are the Eternal Guard, the common members of the kinbands. They fight in ranks of spear on foot, or carry bows, representing Waywatchers.

Levies are the Glade Guard, the militia of the army. They carry bows, firing in massed ranks of black-feathered arrows. Other units can carry short bows (javelins).

As the army uses the Last Romans rules, it would be interesting to field a Harald Hardrada analogue, possibly a great Forest Warden on foot, or even a powerful Dryad character like Drycha. With that, the army would be able to field several foot Hearthguard units.

The next two aren’t rivals. Instead we have the woshippers of Chaos, first the Unidivided Marauder tribes, and the other faction the devoted warriors of Khorne.

Chaos Undivided: This faction represents the mortals who worship the Chaos Gods as a pantheon of equals, praying to each in turn. This version is closer to a tribe of Northmen, seeking to achieve the favor of the gods. The Norse-Gaels faction seems a good match, with its emphasis on building up combat bonues (trying to catch the attention of the gods) and brutal close combat.

Warlords are Champions of Chaos, leaders of Northmen tribes, marked by the gods on the path of Damnation. They can be equipped with Great Weapons (Dane axes, flails, two-handed swords, etc.).

Hearthguard are the Warriors of Chaos, armored brutes dedicated to their gods. They may be equipped with Great Weapons (Dane axes, halberds, etc.)

Warriors of the warband are the Marauders, aggressive mortal tribesmen. They are armed with either Great Weapons (often axes or flails) or throwing axes (javelins).

Levy are the Cultists, the weakest tribesmen. They are often slaves from defeated tribes or newcomers to the worship of Chaos, striving to gain favor. They carry throwing axes and javelins. This could also represent a sorcerous coven like with Tzeentch.

Khorne: I decided to adapt Khorne’s worshippers using the Jomsvikings. The bloody soldiers of Khorne are pitiless and unstoppable, building their Wrath over the course of the battle, until they unleash it through violent destruction. Any member of the warband can carry great weapons or halberds (Dane Axes).

Warlord are the Champions of Khorne, blood-soaked, brutal  killers.

Hearthguard are the Blood Knights, the warband’s most dedicated soldiers, gifted with fine armor and gore-slicked weapons.

Warriors are the Slaughterkin, each desiring nothing more than to prove their power and skill to the Blood God.

Levies are not part of the warband. Khorne pays no heed to weaklings and non-combatants, other than providing more skulls for the Throne. The army cannot take any mercenary units either.

Advertisements

Saga: Fantasy 2nd edition

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 23, 2018 by Sean

I’ve been updating my versions of the Warhammer Fantasy armies to Saga 2nd edition. The quick mechanics and characterful rules for factions works nicely with the distinct armies of Warhammer. As before, I reskinned battleboards, adapting to fit existing factions. Some day I plan on making my own original boards, but then again they plan on doing Saga: Fantasy in the future…

Starting off, we have a classic rivalry in the Dwarfs and Greenskins.

Dwarfs: I based their board on the Anglo-Danes, due to the stalwart nature of the Dwarf shieldwall and their grim determination.

Warlords are Thanes or Princes of Holds. They wield great weapons, decorated with runes of power (-1 armor for enemies in combat and -1 for the Warlord).

Hearthguard are the Holds’ Longbeards, Hammerers, or Ironbreakers, well motivated and well armored. They can have a standard weapon and shield, or carry great weapons (-1 armor for foes and the unit).

Warriors are Clan Dwarfs, the common soldiers of the Hold.

Levies are the Beardlings, young Dwarfs who cover their elders’ advance with bow and sling.

Orcs: Their board is based off the Vikings- the Orcs (and their subordinate Goblins) are pure aggression and violence.

Warlords are the Big Bosses and Warbosses, the biggest and the meanest Greenskin of the tribe.

Hearthguard are the Big’Uns and Black Orcs, armed to the teeth and well-armored. One unit of 4 Hearthguard can be fielded as Savage Orcs (Berserkers).

Warriors are the Boyz, big green monsters ready and able to fight.

Levies are the measly Goblins that the Orcs browbeat to fight for them. Preferring to fight at range, they are armed with bows or javelins.

Next is another rivalry, the noble High Elves and the evil Dark Elves.

High Elves: The Elves use the Scots rules. Their defensive nature and counter-attack abilities seem to match well.

Warlords are Princes or Nobles; they can be mounted on Elven steeds

Hearthguard are one of the martial orders, either Swordmasters, Phoenix Guard, or White Lions; they can be mounted, coming from the Silver Helms or Dragon Princes traditions.

Warriors are from the ranks of the Spearmen and Sea Guard.

Levies are the largely defensive Militia, armed with bow or javelins.

Dark Elves: The Dark Elves’ swift cavalry and murderous ranged power combines to make them deadly combatants. With this in mind, I used the Normans rules.

Warlords are the nobles, princelings, and dark lords of the Dark Elves. They can fight on foot, or ride dexterous horses or Cold Ones.

Hearthguards come from the ranks of the Black Guard, Executioners, Witch Elves, and Cold One Knights. They can fight on foot, or ride horses or Cold Ones. They can also choose to all be mounted with javelins, becoming elite Dark Riders or Darkfire Warlocks.

Warriors are the City Guard, trained Dark Elven soldiers, and the Corsairs. Units can be mounted, representing the Dark Riders and lesser Knights. On foot, City Guard are armed with spear and shield, while one unit of up to 8 can carry the iconic crossbows (-1 Armor on ranged targets, but also -1 Armor themselves because they lack shields).

Levies are made up of Slaves, pushed to battle for their masters. Some can be prisoner Dark Elves, High Elves, or various other captured races. They are armed with bows.

The final rivalry here is Nurgle vs. Tzeentch.

Nurgle: Nurgle’s children play the long game, grinding their opponent down through disease and exhaustion, resisting repeated charges with unfeeling flesh and breaking them with merciless counter-attacks. The Anglo-Dane rules suit them. The Fatigues the army can lay on their opponents could be seen as disease and decay.

Warlords are the Champions of Nurgle, bloated with plague, bearing great scythes and rusted flails. They count as carrying Dane Axes (-1 Armor for targets in melee, and -1 Armor versus enemy melee attacks).

Hearthguard are the Chosen, immensely tough and implacable. They can be gifted with great weapons or other mutations (giving them Dane Axes) or more mundane weapons.

Warriors are the Warriors of Nurgle, the common soldiers of the Plague God, with the most blessed Marauders joining their ranks.

Levies are desperate and lost commoners, weakened by mutation and disease, following the warband in worship of Father Nurgle. They carry bows or slings.

Tzeentch: The Carolingians’ action/reaction system and the ability to manipulate the battleboard on a whim make a good translation of Tzeentch’s mastery of change. The faction also allows you to choose the other Frankish dynasties, allowing for even more variety.

Warlords are the Champions of Tzeentch, powerful fighters and masters of sorcery. They may be mounted on a Chaos steed.

Hearthguard are the Chosen, the fighters decided by fate and effort to serve their master, wielding the finest weapons and foul magics. They may be mounted on Chaos steeds. They can also all be fielded as armed with javelins (spellcasters) instead, representing a mounted coven.

Warriors are the Conspirators, a mix of Chaos Warriors and Sorcerers. Any units may be fielded as a Coven of Chaos, counting as being armed with bows (or magic spells) but they wear lighter armor, reduced to Armor 3. Warriors can also be equipped with normal weapons and armor; they may also be mounted on steeds and armed with javelins.

Levies are Cultists, lesser members of the warband. They represent hangers-on, pawns, and apprentices. They are armed with bows (though again this could represent a spell blast).

More factions are coming. The factions I swapped for Aetius & Arthur rules still apply.

Saga 2nd Edition: Fantasy Redux

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , on April 10, 2018 by Sean

In the past I’ve reskinned Saga battleboards for Warhammer Fantasy armies. With the arrival of Saga 2nd Edition, nearly all the old boards are no longer valid. I’ll have to remake them at some point.

Luckily the factions from Saga: Aetius & Arthur are still legal, so my version of Empire (Late Romans), Lizardmen (Britons) and Savage Orcs (Saxons) are still good. Those can be found in a previous post, including the breakdown of the unit conversions.

On the way!

Saga: Saxons vs. Britons

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , on November 1, 2017 by Sean

I recently played a game of Saga: Aetius & Arthur, where my Britons fought the Saxons.

The scenario was Retreat. We figured after yet another skirmish between the invading Saxons and the native Britons, the Britons were retreating back to a stronghold, pursued by Saxons. We used 6 point armies.

The Britons were a mounted Warlord, 8 mounted Hearthguard, 24 Warriors, and 12 bow Levy. I’ve posted the Warlord and Hearthguard here already. To represent the Britons I used my Welsh and some of my Anglo-Saxons.

The Saxons were led by the original trouble brothers, Hengist and Horsa. The rest of their warband were 8 Hearthguard, 16 Warriors, and a unit of Hunting Dogs. The Saxons were my friend’s army, and are in the process of being painted.

In the scenario, the defender sets up in a thin band at about 1/3 from the attacker’s edge. The attacker sets up across from him near their edge, but can also deploy up to 2 points of units from the opposite edge to cut off their retreat (they start with Fatigue, representing their rush to cut off the retreat). The defender has to get as much of his force off that edge as he can, while the attacker just wants kills. The defenders are assumed to have been running or recovering from the earlier fight, so every Defender unit has Fatigue at the start.

The Britons held the center, anchored by a cottage on one flank and woods on the other, the center a swamp occupied by the bow Levy. The Saxons started with both Warlords and their Hearthguard on the close side, with a unit of Warriors in the middle, and sent the Dogs and the other unit of Warriors around back.

The battle began with some quick movement from the Saxons on both sides, threatening my force immediately. I responded with a few retreat moves, but decided I needed to break the pursuers before they could press their advantage. The Hearthguard charged the nearest warlord, Hengist, pushing him back but unable to kill him. After a countercharge, they were able to bring him down, but at the cost of half the unit. The Fatigue across my whole army was eating activations to remove, since I didn’t want to face the Saxons in combat with Fatigue.

In response to his brother’s death, Horsa went ham on my army, cutting down most of a unit of Warriors in repeated charges. My opponent was able to use his Battleboard ability to just remove Defense dice when he had better armor than my units, easily done with a Warlord who doesn’t get Fatigues from fights. My own efforts to fight through the rear attackers floundered, with great saves by the Saxons and poor saves on my own part leading to losses or ties, keeping my forces hemmed in.

The last part of the battle had little left on the table. Horsa slew my Warlord and his Hearthguard. crushing the last few Warriors in the center. My last group of Warriors finally was able to squeeze through the gap of the rear guard and escape, a measly 5 men out of the whole army.

The last men in my army were the bow Levy left behind in the swamp. Horsa turned his attention to them, launching himself into their ranks. He cut down 4 of the Levy, but miraculously he must have slipped and sank into the murky water or something, as the Levy managed to kill him in combat. After that the game ended.

In the end, it was a Saxon victory by 3 VP’s. They killed my Warlord, 8 Hearthguard, 19 Warriors, and 4 Levy, but paid for it, with the loss of both of the Warlords, 8 Hearthguard, 15 Warriors, and 5 Dogs. This was a horrific battle, with the loss of 3 Warlords!

My Britons performed ok, but I made the mistake of fighting the Saxons head-on instead of retreating, as the scenario wanted. The Saxons did very well, chasing my units, forcing fights and cutting my men down. Their rear guard held my units the whole game, buying his forces time.

More battles in time.

Saga: Thundering Hooves

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , , on August 31, 2017 by Sean

I’ve finally finished the 8-man mounted Hearthguard unit for my Briton warband for Saga: Aetius & Arthur. I posted the first half of the unit earlier. They’ll also serve as Roman mounted troops as well.

The newest members include a leader type, a musician, a draco standard and a Roman signum, reflecting the mixed culture of the Romano-British models I used for the unit. I chose the standard of Legio vigesima Valeria Victrix (Twentieth Victorious Valeria Legion) which saw action in Briton in the later years of the Empire. While the unit has a roundel shield design, I added a few odd shields for individuality. The signum bearer has a small target shield with a serpent, the horn blower has a wolf, and the unit’s ‘leader’ (the second in command of the warband after the Warlord) has a unique dragon shield.

I gave the signum bearer dark skin to reflect some of the recent archeology on Rome in Britannia. I figured he was either a Berber or North African recruit, or even a recruit all the way over from the Middle East. I have also read of the grave of a Syrian who was in the Roman army found at Hadrian’s Wall, so decided to reflect that.

My group and I have been playing lots of games with the new factions. I’ve played as the Saxons, Romans, Britons, and Huns, and played against Saxons, Romans, Picts, and Britons. I haven’t tried the Goths yet, since their battle board seems so weird (emphasis on balancing Fatigue, but encouraging accumulating it).

Recently we played a Romans versus Huns, using the Champions of God scenario from Saga: The Crescent and the Cross book. My friend fielded his Romans (Warlord, 8 Hearthguard, 16 Warriors with spear, 8 bow Warriors, 6 Levy with spear, and a Manubalista) versus my Huns (mounted Warlord, 12 mounted Hearthguard, 16 mounted Warriors, and 12 bow Levy). For this game I once again broke out my grisly Goblin Wolf Riders. I’d love to some day build up an actual human mounted force, but until then only my Gobbos have enough cavalry to substitute. I also use my Goblins for the Spanish faction, another potentially all-mounted army.

The game got off to a quick start, with the Huns using their board’s ability to move the whole army (with bonus distance for cavalry) right up into the Romans’ faces. I knew the Manubalista could potentially wreck my mounted troops, so I concentrated bow fire, wiping it out after its one shot (that my guys miraculously saved against). The left Roman flank collapsed within 2 turns, the Roman commander fleeing as fast as he could to the rest of his army. The Roman right flank had been held up by my Levy archers and some careful use of Fatigue from a small skirmishing cav unit.

I could have simply retreated then and there, since the scenario was based on VP’s for kills, and I had crushed half his army for a only a little damage to my own forces. Instead I decide to make it a fun game, so the Huns swung around and chased after the Warlord and got into a scrum with the remaining Roman infantry. I wore his forces down until the scenario ended. having lost a bunch of my army needlessly. However, he couldn’t make up the gap in VP’s so win for the Huns!

Saga: Fantasy- A&A

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2017 by Sean

 

 

I’ve been playing the newest Saga expansion, the Late Roman-era Aetius & Arthur. I thought some of the new factions would work nicely for some of the Warhammer factions I couldn’t match up before.

Empire: The regimented order of the army and its ability to hold the line and initiate sudden strikes that the Roman faction uses would fit the Empire. This version of the Empire is an ‘earlier’ tech level of the city-states, before widespread gunpowder weapons.

Warlords are Empire nobles, career officers or blue blood royalty. They can fight on foot or mounted on fine steeds.

Hearthguard are the Knights, the elite core of the Knightly Orders like the Reiksguard, Knights Panther, or Blazing Sun, fighting mounted, or Greatswords and Swordsmen, fighting on foot. For an additional 1 point, up to 8 Hearthguard can be fielded as Cataphracts, representing the Inner Circles of the Knightly Orders

Warrior are the State Troops, loyal soldiers of the city-states. They can fight with sword, spear, or halberd (with Armor 4), or take to the field as Huntsmen, carrying bows (with Armor 3).

Levies are the Militia, the common rabble called to defend their realm. They can carry shortbows and throwing axes (javelins) or be fielded as the Free Companies. Free Companies generate 1 Attack for 2 members in melee (unlike normally 1 for 3), and have Armor 4. The player may also remove 6 Levy and replace them with an Artillery Piece manned by 2 Levy crewmen. The piece (Range 2xL) could represent any of the weapons of the Empire, like a bolt thrower or light cannon. The Artillery generates Attack dice when it shoots equal to half the members of the target, reducing their Armor by 1. Each time it fires it gains a Fatigue.

Lizardmen: I figured the defensive nature of the Britons, backed by their heroic Warlords fighting on the front line, leading by example, and directing their men to victory worked to represent the Lizardmen, or at least a Saurus and Skink-focused force.

The key value for the army is Inspiration. Units within S (2″) of the Warlord count as being Inspired. Various battle board abilities only work for Inspired units.

Warlords are Scar Veterans and Oldbloods, ancient born fighters, survivors of countless battles, and direct servants of the Slaan. They can fight on foot or ride Cold Ones. The Warlord can be accompanied by a pair of Temple Guard, called Companions. They form a unit with the Warlord. The Companions extend the 2″ range of the Warlord’s Inspiration from themselves as well. If the Warlord has Companions, he cannot use Side by Side.

Hearthguard are the Temple Guard, hand-picked Saurus decked in the finest armor and jeweled weapons. They can fight on foot or ride Cold Ones.

Warriors are appropriately the Saurus Warriors, bestial reptilian soldiers of the Slann cities.

Levies are the Skinks, diminutive skirmishers and scouts. While lacking in combat ability, they can rain death from their javelins or blowpipes (bows/slings).

Savage Orcs: I decided after playing the Saxons several times, the utter mindless brutality of the Savage Orcs was a good fit. With only fighting on their frenzied minds, the Orcs rush into combat heedless of danger, determined to crush the enemy or die trying.

Warlords are the Savage Orc Bosses, hulking beasts of green muscle, protected by bone ornaments and warpaint, their belief in their invulnerability equal to true armor.

Hearthguard are the Big ‘Uns, the strongest members of the tribe. They group in mobs of their own, ready to stomp anything in reach.

Warriors are the Boyz, the common Orcs of the savage tribes. They lack the brutal strength of the Big ‘uns but make up for it in numbers.

Levy are the Yoofs, the youngest and weakest Orcs. Not yet to the level of a proper member of the mobs, they instead use ranged weapons to pelt the foe while the Boyz close in. Alternatively they could represent Forest Goblins pressed into service. They are armed with bows or slings.

 

And here is a break from Aetius & Arthur factions. I wanted to add in an older faction that I never got around to, based on the Normans from Saga: Dark Age.

Wood Elves: The mixture of archery and shock cavalry exemplified by the Normans fit the Wood Elves well enough. It does somewhat ignore some the stronger close combat units and the various tree spirits, but it will do for now.

Warlords are the Kindred, leaders of one of the numerous kinbands. They can represent Glade Lords, fighting on foot or mounted on stag or Elven steed, or even Branchwraiths or Treemen fighting on foot.

Hearthguards are the Nobles, elite guardians of the Wood Elf realms. They can fight on foot, using their swordstaves, or launch themselves into combat as Wardancers. They can also take to battle mounted as the Sisters of the Thorn or Wild Riders. Alternatively, Heardguard on foot can also be represented by Dryads.

Warriors are the Eternal Guard, the common members of the kinbands. They fight in ranks of spear on foot, or mounted as Glade Riders. One unit (of up to 8 members) can carry Elven Longbows, representing the Waywatchers. Longbow-armed units reduce their targets’ Armor by 1, but also lower their own Armor by 1.

Levies are the Glade Guard, the militia of the army. They carry bows, firing in massed ranks of black-feathered arrows.

There’s still more factions to convert to Saga: Fantasy. I’ll add them eventually.

Saga: Equites

Posted in Miniatures with tags , , , on July 3, 2017 by Sean

I’ve been adding to my Romano-British force for Saga: Aetius & Arthur. I like both of the Roman and Briton factions’ battle boards, so I am designing some of my minies to be usable for either. These will be Romano-British, representing Britons and/or Romans in Britannia near the end of the occupation. In a pinch, they could even represent Goths (since at the time the Goths often were under the employ of the Romans anyway).

With that in mind, I picked up 2 blisters of mounted troops from Gripping Beast; one set of Roman armored cavalry and one of Briton cavalry. They will act as Commanipulares for the Britons or Knights for the Romans. These are the first 4 members of what will be an 8-man Hearthguard unit. I’ll also be able to attach 2 of them as the Companions for the Briton Warlord, the rest forming a 6-man unit.

The miniatures mix nicely together; the Late Roman legions were much more hodge-podge in their uniforms and unit designations. I also figured the Hearthguard, being of the equites social class, would have even more leeway and mixed equipment. The majority of the unit will have the roundel legion shield design, with a few unique designs mixed in. Along with the roundel, the chi-ro symbol shows up in a few places. Their clothing was procured locally, so they’re wearing British versions of the Roman tunics common at that period.

I painted the striping on their cavalry spears, since they apparently did paint them for both decoration and to protect the wooden shafts from rot. Technically, the spears might be a bit too long for this period (resembling full lances) but I’m ok with that to make them look more striking on the table.

The Warlord has been posted here before. However, after some thought and research, I decided he needed a little ‘oomph’. His original shield was a bit boring, and his javelin wasn’t really impressive. With that in mind, a weapon swap (to a proper Roman spatha) and a highly decorated shield. The Virgin will safeguard him through all future battles! The icon and the unit’s shields were all based on historical images I found.

The rest of the unit will come along eventually.