Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Test of Honour Campaign Day at Warlord Games - Part 2

Part 2 of the Warring States Campaign Day. Part 1 can be found here.

Battle 3 - Vital Ground vs Terry (Brotherhood of Shinsei) 21 Points

With the increase of conflict between the Clans of Rokugan, it is vital to control as much territory as possible. More territory equals more koku to recruit more Ashigaru leading to more forces to attack your enemies and gain more territory - a deadly, bloody carousel of manoeuvre and death. With this, the Scorpion Champion moves against the Brotherhood of Shinsei a militant sect of Monks bordering on the northern Scorpion Provinces.
After destroying the Pheonix in its mountain lair, Bayushi Shoju gathers his increased forces and moves to remove the Brotherhood of Shinei. Hizuka - Defender of Temples and Norio, the two prominent monks in the region gain information of Bayushi's intent and arrange their defence, ready for the coming storm.
Entering the outskirts of the small hamlet, the Scorpions take up a perfect position and Shoju's Yumi Ashigaru let fly with a couple of volleys against the monks archers causing bloody wounds against them.

With Fate intervening a short lull in the conflict occurs and both sides look to gaining a better advantage with positioning and cover. A small skirmish occurs on the Scorpions left flank but although its brief and frenzied it results in no injuries as both sides blows are only glancing.

Hizuka orders his archers to sneak around a thick bamboo grove to ambush the oncoming Scorpion forces but Bayushi spots the crouching Shinsei hidden archers. Leaping a border fence the screaming Samurai hero lowers his Naginata and charges the archers. In a devastating martial display, Shoju slaughters the archers to a man, leaving a bloody, dismembered scene in his wake. On the left, Scorpion Masked Men and Hikoku move up to engage Norio and his Naginata support troops.
 With bloodlust glinting in their eyes the skirmish is swift and decisive. Norio is cut down and the Naginata armed monks forced to retire. Bayushi, still high on adrenalin after decimating the archers, notices the Nobori (Large Banner) of the Shinsei trying to rally the monks.
Not concerned about being ahead of his own troops and with no support, Bayushi rampages across the field cutting down the banner bearer and howls into another group of monk archers that suddenly become a viable target. Their hastily loosed arrows rain down around the Scorpion, some bouncing of his ornate armour, but none finding their mark.

With attention again turning to the skirmish on the left flank, the Naginata armed group of monks attack Hikoku with zeal but Kikoku quickly counter-strikes blooding the wavering monks. In the middle of the battlefield Bayushi Shoju carries on his one Samurai wrecking spree, hacking down monks with a perverse glee usually only seen in the corrupted denizens of the Shadowlands.
Hizuka finally falls to the gore striken blades of the Scorpion as Bayushi's forces dominate the field of battle.

Scorpion Win. Enemy Samurai Hero defeated. My Samurai Hero survived.

Battle 4 - The Battle at Uedahara vs Martin (Crab Clan) 24 Points

As the Warring Clans conflict intensifies, the battle lines have been drawn and the rituals of war completed. Battle poems are written by Samurai on the eve of battle and now only one thing remains - to take the heads of your opponents and bask in the glory of victory or lose your own and be respected as a valiant foe.

The Scorpion have dominated during the Rokugan war's and only one major Clan remains as a viable enemy that needs forcing into submission - The Crab! Usually the Crab wouldn't leave their Kaiu wall, defending against Fu-Leng and his Shadowlands incursions. However under pressure and insecurity from the Emperor Hantei and his Seppun Guard they have been forced to move against the Scorpion.

However, the Jade magistrates of the region, torn between Imperial occupation and Clan loyaltyiu, have sent word to the Scorpion Daimyo and they have mobilised their forces to attack the invading Crab.

Hida Utaemon and Hiruma Aikoto under instruction from Hida Kisada have garnered their troops and invaded the western province of the Scorpion Lands. With the Scorpion warned by the local Jade Magistates though the Crab are soon looking like more the defenders than the Invaders.

The Scorpion attack with none of the usual Samurai posturing or protocol. Mounted Retainers fly up the left looking to flank the surprised Crab archers and Teppo troops. Both sides archers exchange fire with casualties light on each.

Bayushi notices the Crab Samurai marching down the right towards the small buildings and moves to intercept with Hikoku and his Masked Men.

The battle progress in intensity but suddenly a rider is seen galloping towards Hida Utaemon. A brief exchange of words is observed and once completed Hida turns and orders his troops to withdraw from the field.

A messenger is sent to Bayushi under a truce banner and its found that the Shadowlands have launched a huge offensive against a breach in the Kaiu wall in the Crabs Ishigaki Province. All available Crab forces have been called back to the wall to defend Rokugan from the demon hordes.

(In real life, Martin had a phone call from home with a personal issue. This forced him to concede the win to me as he had to leave)

An unfortunate way to win what looked like was going to be a great last game.

Scorpion Win. Enemy Samurai Hero survived. My Samurai Hero survived.

Summary

So after 4 great games I had won all of them and it came to the presentations. Keiran announced who had won best painted, most honourable and most dishonourable along with the overall winner.

I came Third with only 1 or 2 points between places. An absolute blast, great day, great organisation and cant wait for the next one.


Monday, 9 October 2017

Test of Honour Campaign Day at Warlord Games - Part 1


Warlord Games hosted the first Test of Honour Campaign Day run by Keiran Byrne. A top bloke who put on a cracking event.

Labelled as Warring States - The Road to Uedahara, the event included 4 rounds and each round allowed the force you used to increase in points. First round started with 15 points and finally led to round 4 using all 24 points of your force.

My force consisted of my Legends of the 5 Rings Scorpion Clan and I took:

Samurai Hero - Bayushi Shojo - 5 points
Samurai - Bayushi Hikoku - 4 points
Loyal Spearmen group - 2 points
Loyal Spearmen group - 2 points
Experienced Bowmen - 3 points
Experience Bowmen - 3 points
Masked Men - 2 points
Renegade - 1 point
Mounted Retainer - 2 points

Because I was using miniatures depicting the Scorpion Clan I asked each opponent if they were ok if I depicted their forces as other Clans from the same background. Everyone was more than happy so here are the battle reports

Battle 1 - Defend our Lord vs Oliver (Mantis Clan) 15 points.

Bayushi Shoju whilst on route back to the Scorpion lands, after being called forth to the Imperial court has been ambushed by scurrilous Mantis Clan pirates. Usually the Mantis Clan raid the sea's and coast around Rokugan, but spies in the Imperial Court sent word that the Scorpion Lord travelled with a small retinue and would be an easy conquest.

Yoritomo Omura readied his Yojimbo and pirate troops in the dense bamboo groves on the Plains of Thunder next to the Large Temple of Osano-Wo. Tipped off by spies in the Imperial Court he had made a fast pace to be in position to ambush the Scorpion.

However, the pace of the Mantis was not quick enough as the Scorpion had seen their advance and readied their defence around the Temple. Bayushi Shoju ordered his Yari guardsmen and Masked Men to stand firm whilst his Yumi (Bows) Ashigaru, let loose their arrows from the bamboo groves.

Yoritomo attacked straight away, sending his Yojimo along with his whole force through the centre of the plains, whilst he skirted around the Temple hoping to surprise Shoju. Shoju being the sly old Scorpion kept back from the fight - The Scorpion only stings when the opponent least expects.
The Mantis Yojimo got ahead of his troops protecting his side and flew at the Scorpion Yari Ashigaru. His first attack was wild and he fumbled his swing resulting in him being knocked to the ground. He was quickly dispatched by the Scorpion troops.

With the death of the Mantis Yojimo, the Scorpion Masked Men advanced and attacked the Pirate archers but were unable to land and significant blows. Yoritomo tries to stealthily move from the Temple to the Cherry Tree orchard but was spotted by a group of Scorpion Ashigaru who managed to blood the Mantis Samurai. Scorpion archers let fly at Yoritomo now as he strayed into range and they manage to injure him.

With Yoritomo limping and bleeding Bayushi bursts from the bamboo grove and in a splendid martial display, whirls his Naginata into the Mantis Samurai. The duel in the Cherry Tree orchard is swift and decisive with Bayushi sending Yoitomo into the afterlife. Nothing survives a sting from a Scorpion.

Mantis Yari troops charge into the Masked Men unaware that their Lord has fallen and manage to cause a fatality.

With the light failing and the Scorpion forces advantage the remaining fatigued Mantis troops retreat from the field. Bayushi Shoju has succesfully defended himself and Scorpions honour.


Scorpion Win. Enemy Samurai Hero defeated, My Samurai Hero survived.


Battle 2 - Sudden Attack vs Chris (Phoenix Clan) 18 points.

Numerous villages have seen the increase of troop encampments as opposing Clan Forces prepare themselves for the coming days ahead. Daimyos know that any advantage that can be gained will have a great effect on the outcome of hostilities. Bayushi Shojo has marched with a raiding force to cause as much disruption of the encroaching Phoenix Clan. In a small village nestled in the forested mountains bordering on a Phoenix province, Bayushi launches his attack with the aim of taking and controlling the village for the Scorpion.



Bayushi Shoju along with Bayushi Hikoku has learnt that Shiba Daizan and Shiba Toshiki of the Phoenix are resting up in a mountain village and are without any Shugenja.
Feeling the time is right for the Scorpion to sting Bayushi slowly arranges his forces on the outskirts of the village. The Phoenix are not as dull witted as first thought and Shiba Toshiki is quick to react, defending the centre of the village. Scorpion Masked Men rush Toshiki and he quickly jabs back but both antagonists avoid the blows.

Shiba Daizan rushes into the centre to Toshiki's aid but Bayushi Shoju charges at him. Daizan swings at Shoju but fumbles in the face of the Scorpions terrifying visage and falls to the ground. Shoju jumps at the advantage that suddenly presents itself but his deadly swing of his Naginata glances off the Phoenix's armour.

During the brief exchange of blows Bayushi Hikoku cuts down Toshiki leaving the unarmed Samurai bloodied at his feet.

Shoju stabs down at Daizan on the ground, seriously hurting him and the Masked Men advance against the approaching Phoenix spearmen groups, managing to kill some. During these deadly exchanges the Ashigaru forces on both sides are menacing each other with casualties falling more heavily on the Phoenix Clan troops.

Hikoku and Shoju swop sides of the combat. Hikoku cuts down the injured and bleeding Daizan whilst Shoju twirls a dance of death through the ranks of Phoenix Ashigaru.

With both Phoenix Samurai cut down and the common troops decimated the surviving members of the Phoenix force retreat leaving all the objectives of the raid in Scorpion hands.

Scorpion Win. Enemy Samurai Hero defeated. My Samurai Hero survived.

Continued in Part Two

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Test of Honour - Legend of the 5 Rings Scorpion Clan Force

Test of Honour by Warlord Games is a skirmish game played with roughly 5 - 20 models on each side (although it is possible and feasible to upscale to larger battles) Players start with a Samurai Hero and can add upto 2 extra Samurai and a number of troops from a large pool of available types. these include Ashigaru Spearmen, Archers and Teppo (musket) soldiers, Mounted warriors, Ronin, Renegades and Masked Men to name a few.

Battles are swift and bloody as players alternate acting with one of their warriors - moving and fighting to achieve the objective of the scenario, whether that may be cutting down the enemy, defending an outpost or finding and protective a spy.

As you play through the scenarios your Samurai will use new skills, and perhaps even take the shameful path of deceit and trickery to gain victory - such choices are the ultimate Test of Honour.
*txt borrowed from Warlord Games Website.


I have been massively interested in Japanese history and Samurai warfare,and was in two minds to make my own foray into Test of Honour along the historical lines. However I also love the Legend of the 5 Rings background and thought this game and its small model count would be ideal for the warring Clans.

So which Clan to do. I debated between Dragon, Crane and Scorpion but what swung my decision was the Ltd Ed Geisha miniature you received via pre-ordering the game deal. This mini would make a perfect Scorpion spy - so Scorpion Clan it was.

Now my hobby time has taken a serious hit lately due to real life constraints and health issues which mean I cant paint as much as I would like and recently I have sent some stuff to the very talented Littleninjapainting, so I sent off my force and below are the results. All painting of miniatures by Littleninjapainting. All scenery, Sashimono/Nobori banner decals and basing by myself.

I am really looking forward to getting this force on the table at the end of the month at the Warring States tournament being held at Warlord Games.

Scorpion Samurai

Mounted Retainer

Nobori, Ashigaru Gunso and Musician

Geisha Spy

Ashigaru Bowmen and Archery Gunso

Masked Men

Ashigaru Yari

Scorpion Clan



Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Rumbleslam


Welcome to the ring! The spotlights are on, the confetti cannons are loaded, and the mages have had their staffs taken away. The world of RUMBLESLAM awaits!
The original game of fantasy wrestling is here. Join in on fast paced high action gaming as Goblins jump off the turnbuckles, Dark Elves bounce from the ropes, and Dwarfs pick up Werewolves to throw out of the ring!*

*Original txt from the TTcombat website.

Rumbleslam is the fantastic fantasy wrestling game from TT Combat.


Here are my Rumbleslam teams (painted by the amazing Littleninjapainting)

Stomp Nation
Brimstone Chokers
Bad Moon Bruisers
The Ref!