Saturday, January 19, 2019

Rangers of Shadow Deep, Mission 2, The Beacon Tower: Scenario 2 Tor Varden


Rangers of Shadow Deep, Mission 2, The Beacon Tower: Scenario 2  Tor Varden, The Lower Level


This report is a complete playthrough.

Full layout of lower levels with all the bits for the potential 4 rooms.

Pre-game notes.
I already gave my initial thoughts on the scale down of the towers rooms  in my last post but-

Wow I still had a lot more to do here than I Initially planned. Not only did I build the modular floors and walls for all 3 rooms, I had put together a bunch of different things to fill out all four potential rooms in the scenario.  Thankfully I had all the bits and pieces I needed it just took me while to paint 20 something small bits of scatter terrain / atmosphere decoration.
 This in the end was a good thing as its better now painted up for use then sitting around in a bin on my desk.

I also put everything together for Scenario 3 which included even more pieces, while I get to reuse my floor tiles as the tower roof  , the walkway, floor hatch, bonfire, prisoner, pillars that support the covered roof , all needed to be completed. Now I am finally ready to roll dice I can do both scenario 2 and 3 back to back.

As for my Ranger and Companions, since the battle with the bridge guards, they have added a party member,  a Tor Varden soldier named Leofric who escaped the initial raid on the tower and wants to help retake it. Thorvald was badly wounded at the bridge and carries on with 7 Health. A spying vulture escaped the bridge fight and it serves as some sort of warning to the Orcs of Shadow Deep. They know we are coming.   Sigurds magic shield has 2 uses remaining,
Ranger Blackwulf has found some Fireheart Green herbs which will give him a bonus activation at some point. Lastly Blackwulf reached level 2 which gave him a stat increase, in my last report I wrote he was increasing his Shoot stat but after reading over the game again I ended up going with the Fight Stat.

Again the mission specifies Gnolls as the adversary . We’ve replaced Gnolls with Orcs as primary agents of Shadow Deep in my games , the Orcs have the exact same stats as the Gnolls presented in the mission or the RoSD bestiary.

All die rolls are shown as (X) all combat rolls are (x,x) The first number always being the heroes.

There is no Target Point in this scenario

Here are Blackwulf and his men current stats are we go into the game.

 



SCENARIO 2: TOR VARDEN, THE LOWER LEVEL

After the encounter at the bridge, you and your companions were able to slip past a couple of other Orc patrols and reach Tor Varden. There were no guards posted outside, and very little indication of anyone inside. Then a muffled scream came from somewhere in the tower. It was a sign both good and ill. There is at least one man alive in Tor Varden, but you might already be too late to save him. You will need to move fast.


Special Rules

This scenario continues until all the doors have been opened, and all evil models on the table have been killed.

Before we start I need to have a hero make both a Stealth and Pick Lock roll at (TN 10)
We choose our Rogue of course as he’s +5 to both skills. Unfortunately he’s having an off day and rolls (4) and (6) so he’s spotted by enemy but does pick the lock. Regardless the team has already suffered the penalty in the first room as the Vulture escaped in the previous scenario
The Orcs ready and waiting as Gord releases the mechanism that raises the heavy portcullis opening the door to lower level of Tor Varden.

The door to the lower levels of Tor Varden

We draw a card to see what the first room is:

RED THREE

The Armoury. This room is lined with racks filled with weapons and armour. One
clue marker should be placed in each of the two corners opposite the door by which
the heroes entered. One Orc archer should be placed in the center of the wall
running between the two clue markers. Two Orc fighters should be placed in the
centre of the room. If the players have suffered the penalty for this room, (YES WE HAVE)
then replace the two Orc fighters with Orc sergeants.
Players have until the end of the fourth turn after they open the door to this
room, to open the door to the next room, or they suffer the penalty in that room
been killed.


Orc were alert and waiting.









TURN 1

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates with his three comrades at the door , Gord , Skuti and Thorvald


Blackwulf immediately makes a 6 inch move and engages an Orc Sergeant
He attacks (17,8) ahh so close to being able to use his deadly strike ability. Still at +4 to the Sgts +3 he wins easily 21 to 11.. the Orc is armor 11 so its 10 damage.enough to kill a regular orc but not a sergeant!.

Thorvald moves to following  Blackwulf making the combat 2 vs 1..Thorvald will be +5 to the Orcs +3..(14,10)  Thorvald wins 19 to 13…the hammer drops for 8 damage and the Orc Sergeant falls.


Skuti moves behind the large pillar in the room and then shoots at the second Orc Sergeant.
(14,16 ) the shot ties 16 to 16..so the shot misses

Gord makes a 6 inch move behind some crates and throws his lucky knife at the Orc Archer,
(6,12) but its not so lucky this time and bounces off the wall.


CREATURE PHASE

The remaining Orc Sergeant following the evil actions rules must engage Blackwulf so he does
I know have the choice of having Thorvald (who is beginning the game with only 7 health) pulled in giving a us a big +6 to +3 advantage..I deem the risk is worth it and we fight 2 vs 1
(10,12) ugh not great but we barely win 16 to 15 doing 5 damage to the Orc


Orc Archer returns fire at Gord but Gord has light cover for +2 (14, 19) ugh..the Orc is a marksman it seems at the Orc Wins 22 to 17 ouch 22 is lethal to Gord with no armor its 12 damage and he's only 10 health..I got careless here and our Rogue falls out of action,


COMPANION PHASE

All Companions in play have gone this turn

EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario

TURN 2

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates with Thorvald and Skuti

Blackwulf in a 2 vs 1 with the wounded Orc Sergeant is +6 with Thorvald Supporting. (14,3)
20 to 6 the Orc is clobbered and goes down with 9 damage.

Skuti moves to hard cover behind crates and has a clear shot at the Orc Archer (7,7)  ties at 9 the arrow just misses

Thorvald moves 6 inches and engages the Orc Archer they fight (6,15) ughh this Orc is going to be a problem  the orc wins 16, 9…that’s 5 damage to Thorvald who drops to 2 health!


CREATURE PHASE

The Orc Archer attacks Thorvald again is +3 to +1 (18,15) WHEW..Thorvald wins 21 to 16
The damage is 13 more than enough for Thorvalds hammer to splatter it against the wall.


COMPANION PHASE

The remaining companions come charging in all making double moves toward the door.


EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario

TURN 3

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates with Sigurd, and Leofric

Blackwulf moves to Thorvalds side and cast his Heal Spell on him giving him 5 health back

Sigurd moves to the western clue marker we roll (13)

Hidden Note. -Make a Perception Roll (TN5). If successful you find a note scrawled
by the captain of the tower, before he was killed, warning of the shadow knight that
is now in control of the tower. Your first attack that damages the shadow knight in
the next scenario does an additional 2 points of elemental magic damage.

Sigurd makes the Perception check at +0 and rolls (8)  he passes.

Leofric moves to the Door but doesn’t open it yet.



CREATURE PHASE

All creatures in this room have been eliminated


COMPANION PHASE

Skuti- moves to cover the hidden making sure he has cover himself from the pillar

Guthrum- moves to the eastern clue marker, roll (18)

Book of Astronomy. You find a book of star charts. Any figure carrying this book
receives +1 to Navigation Rolls

well not particularly useful in this mission but we will hold on to it

Thorvald- Hold position moves 0.


EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario


  
TURN 4

RANGER PHASE



Blackwulf group activates  Sigurd, Leofric and Thorvald

Leofric- Opens the Door we draw a card.

RED ACE

The Storage Room. This room is filled with boxes, crates, bags, and barrels. Two treasure
tokens should also be placed in the room, in the corners opposite the door from which
the heroes enter. Four Orc  fighters are in this room. One should be positioned adjacent
to each treasure token. Two more should be standing together halfway between the two
doorways (or the doorway and the stairs in the case of Room C).
If the players have suffered the penalty for this room, replace the two orc fighters
next to the treasure tokens with orc  archers, and put them in cover behind crates.
Players have until the end of the fourth turn after they open the door to this
room to open the door to the next room, or they suffer the penalty in that room.


Storeroom setup

We do NOT suffer the penalty in this room, so no Archers.


Leofric follows up with a 6 move but can quite reach any orcs

Blackwulf makes a 9 inch double move engaging the right center Orc
Thorvald also makes a 9 inch move engaging the right center orc

Sigurd makes a 9 inch double move as well moving toward Leofric but cant reach an Orc either




CREATURE PHASE

Right Center Orc is engaged with Blackwulf and Thorvald its +6 vs +2  (16,15 ) or 22 to 17 a win and an easy kill with Thorvalds support  with 12  damage.

Left Center Orc  moves and engages Leofric . I snap Sigurd into the Combat so its +5 vs +2
(6,8) or 11 to 10 the heros win but no damage

Left Orc-  moves to flank Sigurd this pulls hims out of support of Leofric so there are no extra bonuses its +3 vs +2  (17,7) Sigurd  prevails mightly 20 to 9… 9 damage to the Orc doesn’t not put it down its fights on with 1 Health

Right Orc is closest to Sigurd so he charges in this gives the Orcs +2 to the Fight or +3 to +4 (15,10) or 18 to 14 Sigurd prevails….wounding Orc with the lowest health the Left Orc with 1 health falls dead

COMPANION PHASE

Skuti , moves to the Doorway but has no viable targets



Guthrum – makes a double move into the room but cant reach any combatants



EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario

STORAGE ROOM ( description says 4th turn after door is open which would make Turn 5 the 1st turn    in the storage meaning we have till the end of Turn 8 to get the door open to room C.
However I am playing it 4 turns after we opened the door making it end of Turn 7.)

TURN 5

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates  Sigurd, Leofric and Thorvald

Blackwulf engages Left center Orc we have Leofric for Support..+6  vs +2  (7,4) Blackwulf wins 13 to 6..its only 2 damage to the Orc

Leofric attacks with Blackwulf support.  +5 vs +2  (7,8)  or 12 to 10 the heros win but its only 1 point of damage

Sigurd is fighting the Right Orc is +3 vs +2  (8,17) oh no the Orcs are battling back he bests Sigurd this round winning 19 to 11..Sigurd takes 7 damage!


Melee is center of room got ugly quick , here Sigurd Survives a 3 vs 1

Thorvald – moves into combat with Leofric and Sigurd hoping for the Kill now he will get a +4 bonus for 2 allied figures supporting +7 to +2.  (16,20) oof thankfully  evil creatures don’t auto win or crit on a 20…we barely squeak this out  23 to 22 but with the Hammer damage bonus its wopping 14 damage taking out the Orc.


CREATURE PHASE

A Lone  Right Orc stands,  it continues fighting Sigurd.. +3 vs +2 (1,7) ugh 4 to 9 the Orc wins but does no damage.

COMPANION

Guthrum snakes his way into the combat with Sigurd but it takes a double move so no fight.

Skuti moves twice and reaches the left most Treasure Token

EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario

 TURN 6

Blackwulf group activates  Sigurd, Thorvald and Guthrum

Guthrum fights the last Orc with Sigurd supporting (7,11)  at +5 vs =2  its 13 to 12 the Orc wins doing 2 damage to Guthrum.

Thorvald moves into combat against it’s a 3 vs 1 giving him + 7 vs + 2..ack (6,18) this super orc is possessed he fights off all three! Winning 20 to 9… that’s 8 damage to poor Thorvald who has 7 health so he goes down!


Super Orc here, returns the favor  not only surviving a 3 vs 1 but puts Thorvald out of action!

Blackwulf moves into combat now that Thorvald as fallen there is room. He has 2 allies supporting his for a +8 attack vs +2.., (14,3) finally the Ranger delivers a killing blow winning the fight 23 to 5 and 12 damage

Sigurd moves to the Treasure token by the door.


CREATURE PHASE

All creatures in this room have been eliminated


COMPANION PHASE

Skuti picks up the Treasure token and moves to cover the door

Leofric moves toward  the door, but doesn’t reach it , he wants to stay close enough to Blackwulf to activate in the next Ranger Phase.

EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario

TURN 7

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates  Guthrum, Skuti and Leofric

Ok Gord and Thorvald are down, Sigurd is at 7 health, Guthrum 11 , while the others are unwounded.


Leofric- moves to the door, opens it- we draw a card. Leofric moves into the room.

RED 4

The Shaman’s Workshop. Whatever this room once was, it has been completely
transformed into a horrific workshop. The room contains some scattered furniture,
all of it covered in animal parts. In the centre of the room is a table with an inanimate
flesh golem lying on top of it. Place a Orc shaman next to the table. Place two Orc
fighters 3” away from the table, between the table and the door through which the
heroes entered. If the shaman is still alive at the end of the third turn after the door
to the room is opened, the flesh golem animates – treat it as a normal evil creature.
If the players have suffered the penalty for this room, then the Orc shaman
has cast a spell and every hero entering the room must make a Will Roll (TN10) or
suffer -2 Fight while within the room. Players have until the end of the fifth turn after they open the door to this room, to open the door to the next room, or they suffer the penalty in that room.


Shaman workshop set up




The Heroes do not suffer the penalty for this room  The flesh golem will animate during the creature phase of Turn 9.

Blackwulf – Moves to the door, and fires his bow at the Orc dead ahead he declares his “steady aim” shot for +5 since he moved it’s a hurried shot for +6 the Orc has no cover.
(20,6)  boom critical hit with the bow…I guess we didn’t need the steady aim.. winning 26 to 8 with the Crit its 31 to 8 or 20 damage…I think that’s the most damage I have done in a single attack yet. The orcs head explodes…


Blackwulf shoots his epic bow shot from here

The Orc at the top on this pic takes the 20 damage arrow
However Blackwulf is no blocking the door and I can find anything in the book about moving thru allied figures…

Guthrum and Skuti move up toward the door there is no one is sight for a bow shot.

CREATURE PHASE

The remaining Orc Soldier quacking engages Leofric, they fight! +3 vs +2  ( 4,14,) ugh Leofric bungles his attack losing 16 to 7 taking 4 points of Damage

The Orc Shaman jumps on the opportunity and Joins the combat making it +3 vs + 3 (11,3)
Leofric prevails  14 to 6 doing  3 damage to the Shaman.


Leofric running ahead and getting mobbed somehow he lived.
  
COMPANION PHASE- Sigurd secures his treasure token but cant get thru the door.

EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario

TURN 8

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates  Guthrum, Skuti and Sigurd

Blackwulf charges thru the door attacking the Shaman. +4 to +1  (7,3) The Ranger wins but no damage is dealt. But he pushes the Shaman back so Skuti can get a bow shot.



Skuti moves into the room and shoots an arrow at the Shaman . +2 vs +1  (16,4) Skuti hits with an 18 doing 6 damage to Shaman he is down to 3 health!

Sigurd  and Guthrum both move into the room but position and obstacles prevent them from engaging the Orcs
Skuti manages to get off his one bow shot here..

CREATURE PHASE

Orc  Soldier continues fighting Leofric  +3 vs +2  (13,11,) Leofric battles to win the round 16 to 13 doing 5 damage to Orc with 11 armor.

Orc Shaman also must engage Leofric.. with the support is even dice. (11,7 ) Leofric wins but no damage he (Leofric)  steps back

COMPANION PHASE

Guthrum-
Leofric stepping back allows Guthrum room to engage the Orc Soldier +3 vs +2 , (10,17) ugh bad move for Guthrum he loses combat 13 to 19 and takes  8 damage , Guthrum is at 3 health!

Sigurd- has room to maneuver around the furniture and engage the Shaman +3 vs +1 , (10,4)
Sigurd wins 13 to 5 doing 2 points to Shaman he down to 1 health he needs to Survive the next Ranger phase.

Skuti- has no vaild bow target so activates but sits tight hoping for a lucky shot


EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario

 TURN 9 - SHAMANS WORKSHOP

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates Sigurd, Guthrum and Leofric

Blackwulf moves into combat with the Shaman , with Sigurd now supporting (+6 vs +1) (6,15)
It seems that Flesh Golem is just destined to activate. Blackwulf loses 12 to 16…to the Shaman he takes 5 damage and is Poisoned!

Sigurd tries to finish the job +5 with Support vs +1  (6,6)  Noooo, he cant do it he wins but doesn’t damage the Shaman with an 11 vs armor 11..
Leofric has to move around the Flesh Golem on the Table and cant reach either combat

Leofric trying to flank but couldnt reach...


Guthrum is fighting the Orc Soldier  +3 vs +2   (14,7)  Guthrum wins 17 to 9 with the 2 handed axe the 8 damage is enough to put the Orc down!

CREATURE PHASE

Flesh Golem Animates!  Its rises from the table destroys it in splinter of wood and attacks Leofric! Who just happens to be standing right there..bad timing , it. +3 vs + 4 (19,13)  Leofric must be channeling some heroic impulse as he scores a brutal wound for the men of Tor Varden nearly stopping the Golem in its tracks  winning 22 to 17 its 12 damage against its armor 10. Just like that the Golem has 4 health

Flesh Golem animates and the Orc Shaman with 1 health just wont die....


Shaman engaged with Sigurd and Blackwulf attacks the wounded Sigurd.  +5 vs +1 (5,9)
Again a stalemate combat! No damage

COMPANION PHASE

Skuti moves hoping to finish the Golem off but just doesn’t have a shot.

EVENT PHASE

The are no random events in this scenario

TURN 10

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates Sigurd, Guthrum

Guthrum slides into the combat with the Shaman…with 2 allies supporting its +7 to + 1 (6,1) or 13 to 2 with the damage bonus its  4 damage enough to put the shaman down

Blackwulf  now can move into combat with the Flesh Golem he must make the TN8 will check (15) +4 = 19 ..Blackwulf  isn’t  bothered by the Golems “horrific appearance “ and but since he is Poisoned he cannot attack!!

Sigurd must try to finish the Job he also trys to move into combat with the Golem . he makes his Will check (6) +2 = 8 Right on the nose!  He now has  2 allies supporting for +7 vs +4  (19,7) yeah! A crushing blow…26 to 11  or 16 damage the Golems head comes off!..


Sigurd with the final killing blow on the Golem ending the scenario

SCENARIO ENDS

Status

Blackwulf   14 health remaining, Poisoned
Skuti- Unwounded
Guthrum- 3 Health remaining
Sigurd  5 Health remaining
Leofric  8 Health remaining
Gord  out of action- roll (11) full recovery
Thorvald  out of action (11) full recovery

The next scenario starts immediately after this as we proceed up the stairs all models regain 8 health .

I assuming in Gord and Thorvalds case with no down time between these scenarios “full recovery” just means they have survived without any additional ailments and now have 8 health since they were at “0”


So the groups condition as it heads up the tower stairs is as follows

Blackwulf, full health 19, poison cured.
Skuti full health 10
Guthrum  wounded health 11
Sigurd full health 12
Gord wounded 8 health
Thorvald wounded 8 health
Leofric full health 12


Experience

8 Orcs killed at 3 xp each  = 24 xp
5xp for the Shaman
5 xp for the Golem

34 xp total

Items

Sigurd awarded  bonus elemental damage against Shadow Knight

Guthrum holds onto the Book of  Astronomy for the time being

Treasure Token 1- roll  (4)  Gold and Jewels  ( I take the progression point and give it to Gord.)

Treasure Token 2 roll (9) Herb of Potion roll (14)  Philter of Fairy Dust (this will come in very handy next scenario. We give this to Blackwulf swapping out his dagger slot


Final thoughts

A grindy tough fight...we had superior numbers so my never suffered the penalty other than the first room , I can see parties with much smaller number or those who forget to take advantage of the extra soldier acquired from the bridge if they roll it having a much tougher fight, the golem could have  been a lot tougher had we failed a Will Check at the end there, if gotten a decent roll vs the shaman the last room would have been dare I say… easy.

Experience wise we got the basic points you can get plus the golem. We missed some of the bigger rewards we could have rolled if we got lucky on the clue table, I was hoping for the Torture Room on that one.

I see a lot folks online running multiple Rangers with less grunts and more elite troops, while everyones mileage may vary, I think if you want to balance out the flickleness of the D20, situations like Orc grunts flanked on 3 sides fighting off your attack and put on of your men down. (turn 6, Thorvald ) You need take as many troops as your RP allows, I’d also save the Raptors and Hounds for higher levels  or if you have odd RP to burn after troops.

Up the stairs they go…..


To the tower roof!!!


Sunday, January 6, 2019

Rangers of Shadow Deep : Building Tor Varden



Tor Varden is one of three beacon watchtowers mentioned in “Mission 2: The Beacon Tower “contained in the Rangers of Shadow Deep rulebook.  In scenario 2 you must assault the tower and take it back from the Shadow Deep  invaders that are using  the captured the watchtower ‘s alight with green fire as the front line of its creeping dominion.  A forboding signal to the people of the Kingdom of Allladore that the Shadow Deep , now fully in control  of the neighboring Lorenthia , is coming for them- next.  Breaking the line and taking back Tor Varden will return it as a key stronghold to Keep the forces of Shadow Deep at bay , for now.


So one of the many things I really like about this game is get to break out a bunch of stuff I haven’t used in years or use stuff  I built that’s on display on my table as background scenery but haven’t really got to use yet And of course motivate myself to paint more miniatures this year  and shrink the great unpainted pile.

The plan wasn’t ever to buy or build a bunch of “new stuff” . When I read the scenario for The Beacon Tower and say the artwork  ( add picture here), I was like “well cool I have two really great towers already built!”. Then I read the scenario. 

Firstly the watchtower isn’t very tower like . Its large lower level made up of three rooms, (and I am assuming and am designing it  “L” shaped)  with stairs at the end of the Third room the go up into the tower of unspecified height where you battle it out on top level which has an exterior walkway.
The  upper section of the tower is a square watchtower more the  late Roman/ early Saxon era and much less like we envision a standard fantasy medieval type “tower”

A late Roman era watchtower similar in appearance to what described in the scenario abet about 10 times smaller

Secondly the rooms are huge.. Described as 1.5”  x 1.5 each or 18”x 18” is game scale that’s  90 feet each side  of 8100 square feet per room all the rooms and the tower itself are this dimension. The 4 areas mentioned  adding up to 32,400 Square feet are the size of a small Keep  not a Watchtower..but regardless , .

I built this over 2016-2017 its roughly 2 x 2..in its about 15,000 SF..125 frontage with 30 foot battlements..
I get why Mr McCullough does this- the players need space to move around. He’s trying to keep the scenarios on a 3x3 -2.5 x2.5  playing area.  I probably would have shrank the interior spaces and added an encounter in the outdoor space to fill up the area of the game setup because  at certain point  playability and reality need to intersect when the rooms you encounter at that huge size are a Storeroom, and Armory, a Torture Chamber and a Workshop.

This is just a minor critique.  This is a great double blind scenario where you have no clue what the next room is until you play the card. I am very excited to play it but the bottom line for me , My main point and the idea for this post was I really didn’t have any terrain,( and if you read this blog at all in the past , you know I have the proverbial “shit-ton”)That worked for this.

 I thought about rewriting it a bit making the tower a small keep as above and the lower section a dungeon. with the final battle in the keep courtyard with archers on the castle walls .but my dungeon isn’t  modular and the room are very dungeon like. (i.e small) and that just didn’t have the right vibe
One way to go about it , thou it kind of defeats the purpose of building war gaming terrain since 06'
  
So , lets build it then.  I recently watched Ash at GMG play this scenario and he downsized it considerably using some Laser cut dungeon walls and it played out great.  I figure I split the difference and go modular dungeon as it’s the one thing missing for my collection that does come up form time  I don’t have,  and I know I’ll use it and don’t I always do a Hirst Arts project in January??

 The self-convincing was easy. I decided on a 12 x 12 room for the 1st room of the lower level and that will also double as the tower upper section /roof  for scenario 3 by just adding the wooden walkway, the other rooms will be  8 x 8 Most of its cast up already, half of its painted, Store room , check, Torture Chamber, check Workshop, yeah sure , Armory, (wishes he saved those empire weapon racks) I’m pretty slammed this week hopefully I can get the game in this coming  weekend.

My Tor Varden the lower level 1st room what ever it may this WIP is the first model up after all the pieces dried and base drybrush....you can see my wooden walk way to the right are the GW pieces from Goblin Town I sliced up..they've never been used till now. 

Monday, December 31, 2018

Rangers of Shadow Deep, Mission 2: The Beacon Tower. Scenario 1: The Bridge Guards.




Rangers of Shadow Deep, Mission 2: The Beacon Tower. Scenario 1: The Bridge Guards


The following is my 3rd Rangers of Shadow Deep complete play- through

Pre-game notes

Didn’t have to a lot for this one either other than paint up my “Terrain Crate” Camp site, the Vulture and one more Frostgrave Soldier for a potential Tor Varden Man at Arms.

The mission specifies  Gnolls as the adversary . I don’t own any Gnolls, but I could not think of better use for my horde of Lord of the Rings  Orcs and primary agents of Shadow Deep in my games , the Orcs have the exact same stats as the Gnolls presented in the mission or the RoSD bestiary.

All die rolls are shown as (X) all combat rolls are (x,x) The first number always being the heroes.



There is no Target Point in this scenario but the Orcs will never randomly move into the river.
This scenario lasts a maximum of ten turns. During the event phase of each odd- numbered turn (so turns 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9)  I will draw one Event Card


Mission 2: The Beacon Tower


“Only hours after you arrived back from destroying the nest of spiders, you received a message from your commanding officer. Contact has been lost with the beacon tower of Tor Varden, and it is presumed to have been overrun. You are commanded to round up what men you can and proceed with all swiftness to Tor Varden to ascertain the truth. If the tower has fallen, learn what enemy forces now occupy it and harass or eliminate them as opportunity presents.”

Episode 1: The Bridge Guards


“As you make your way towards Tor Varden, the gentle, rolling hills slowly give way to rocky plains, and finally into the boulder-filled maze known locally as ‘the Scree’. It is a barren, unnerving place – a perfect site for an ambush as the large rocks cut lines of sight down to just a few yards in most places. Proceeding cautiously, you eventually hear the Enthel River, which you must cross to reach Tor Varden. As you approach, however, you hear other noises as well, nearly drowned out by the river. Voices, of some inhuman type, a language filled with whines and barks.
Climbing to the top of a large boulder, you get a clear view down to the river. There, standing astride the old stone bridge is a patrol of Orcs. Judging by the large cooking pot they have set up over the fire, these Orcs are camped here, likely to guard the bridge. The only other place to cross the Enthel River is a ford, in sight of the bridge, otherwise, it will take a least half a day to reach another crossing. There is nothing for it, the Orcs will have to be eliminated, as quickly and quietly as possible.”




GAME SET UP- ORC DEPLOYMENT
  


 Ranger Blackwulf and his Companions


 

SPECIAL RULES

“Before the scenario begins, the players should select one figure to make a Navigation Roll (TN12). If successful, they may move any three heroes up to 6” in any direction. “

Blackwulf  checks at Navigation +5 rolls (14)

Blackwulf orders Skuti, Gord and Guthrum to sneak further ahead




TURN 1

“At the start of each turn, the players should select one hero on the table to make a Stealth Roll (TN8). If successful, the players may move one gnoll figure up to 6” in any direction. This lasts until the alarm is raised.

We have Gord make the check  at + 5 vs TN 8 Roll (6) +5 = 11!  We move the eastern most Orc Archer (A4) behind some trees near Archer 3 (A3)  this will obscure his line of sight to the rangers and to Archer 3 .

after the successful stealth move.

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates both Sigurd and Thorvald with him this turn
They see Archer A3 who will have Line of Sight to them on his turn unless they either hide or kill him, I choose the later

“The rangers have the element of surprise in this scenario. Whenever they make an attack (of any kind) against a gnoll they receive +4 bonus to their roll. This lasts until the alarm is raised.
If a gnoll ever activates with a hero in line of sight, or a gnoll takes damage within line of sight of another gnoll, the alarm is raised. The players no longer get to make Stealth checks or receive the attack bonus.”


Blackwulf moves 6 inches climbing a small hill , he has a clear shot to archer but we must kill him  armor 11, health 10 meaning we need at least a 21 on the dice.

Blackwulf decides to use his Steady Aim Heroic Ability right out of the gate here so the shoot is +2 for his shoot, +4 for Surprise and +5 for Steady Aim…a total of +11 so I am looking for a 10> here

He shoots (11,12) the archers shoot is +2  with a +1 since Blackwulf moved making the final 22 vs 15 Blackwulf succeeds 22 vs 11 armor , the Orc Takes the Arrow in skull and falls dead.  One Down.

Thorvald and Sigurd  creep forward trying to remain out of sight as long as possible

CREATURE PHASE

The Orcs current do not have line of sight to any ranger so have no reason to move
I do have Archer A4 move back to his original position we are assuming hes patrolling.


COMPANION PHASE


Skuti leaves cover going after Orc Archer 4, he moves 6 inches has clear shot and fires (10, 11) wish he had that farlight leaf from last game  hes +6 with the Surprise vs +2 for the Archer the archer also gets +1 because Skuti took a hurried shot.
The final is 16 to 14 he wins but only does 5 damage. The Orc is still alive.

Gord quickly moves up 6 inches and throws his Knife…(20,12)  well luck is sure with the Rangers so far and the throwing knife even with -1 to damage easily kills the Orc…Two Down.


The Crit with the Throwing Knife

EVENT PHASE

RED 5 –





“Booby Trap. Pick one random hero. That figure must make either a Traps Roll (TN7) or Perception Roll (TN7). If the figure fails, make an immediate +1 attack against the figure. If this attack does any damage, the alarm is raised. “



I roll a D6 going in order left to right across the board…roll (5)  Skuti! Oh No he steps on the booby trap- he has no traps or perception skill..and even roll but rolls (11)  Their Luck remains.



TURN 2

Gord makes the Stealth Check again roll (10) or 15 vs TN 8 ..we have Orc Archer B move towards the Rangers out into the open..patrolling looking for the other guards..

RANGER PHASE

Well its was fun while it lasted there is just no way we can take any more guard without raising the alarm we Orc Archer B out in the open for Both Blackwulf and Skuti’s arrows but The Guards on the bridge have line of sight to him.so killing raises the alarm..not killing raises the Alarm..we could have left him where he was or moved him the other way..but its seems removing another enemy for the table is most prudent before the front assault…as Events can bring 2 more Orcs to the party.

Blackwulf Group Activates both Sigurd and Thorvald

Blackwulf  Fires his bow from where he is still getting the Surprise Bonus (17, 10) or 23 to 12  again his arrow strikes home the 23 vs 11 armor is 12 damage enough to take him out However the bridge guard see him killed and the ALARM IS RAISED.  Three down.


Alarm raising 3rd Orc Kill

Blackwulf then moves three inches over some rough ground

Thorvald and Sigurd both move the road to charge the bridge head out Sigurd in the front with the Brightness Shield moving across the same rough ground as Blackwulf they get a bit further but not much.


Charging the Bridge , after the Alarm is raised


CREATURE PHASE

The Orcs charge there max move off the Bridge of 9 inches..the don’t reach the Rangers yet..
The last remaining Orc Archer see the Rangers, its shoots at the Closest Hero, Sigurd!
Sigurd uses the Brightness Shield trying to blind him (5,3 ) or 10 vs 5…the Arrow misses!
I check the shield charges from 5 to 4

The Orcs in the Camp move their max move to reinforce the Bridge.


COMPANION PHASE

Guthrum moves 9 inches towards the Oncoming Orcs



Skuti moves 6 inches stops and fires an Arrow at one the Camp guards at the crest of the Bridge the bridge more than half covers him so the Orc is +2 for shoot, +4 for cover and +1 since it was a hurried shot  Roll (10,7)  or 12 to 14 the Orc win the arrow knicks the bridge wall and breaks.


Skuti tries to take out Orc Fighter 2 coming over the bridge

Gord makes a double move just reaching the river ford..not much of a fighter (other than the Critical hit knife throw) Gord is making a beeline around the back way heading for the camp while the others are fighting.


Guthrum and Skuti move to Aid, Gord in the background reaches the river ford.

EVENT PHASE

None this turn



TURN 3

Alarm is raised , no stealth rolls

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf Group activates both Sigurd and Thorvald

Blackwulf  shoots an arrow at the Orc Sergeant.  (5,20) Oof the Orc Catches it and snaps it half
Undaunted he moves 6 inches and engages him but cant fight this phase


Started so well with a clean beheading on the Orc Sgt1

Sigurd moves 6 inches into combat with the eastern most Orc Fighter (F4), Thorvald cant reach the other Orc Fighter (F3) but can block him from getting into support the combat with Blackwulf.

CREATURE PHASE

The last Orc Archer fires an arrow at Thorvald as he advances..(18,11) there are two intervening pieces of terrain making it big miss 20 to 13 in Thorvalds favor.

Orc Fighter 3 moves and is pulled into combat with Thorvald, down comes the hammer
(14,,1)  or 17 to 3 Thorvald connects for 6 +2 for the Hammer..8 damage the Orc is takes a brutal hit but keeps fighting Thorvald keeps fighting

Orc Sergeant versus Blackwulf (19, 6)  Finally we are calling our Deadly Strike here our first chance in 3 games to use the Heroic ability..Blackwulf wins 22 to 9 and it’s a critical so 27 against armor 11 ..16 damage the Orc Sgt has 12 health so Blackwulf beheaded him in single combat!..the Rangers are inspired!

Orc Fighter 4 fights Sigurd  (8,6)  Sigurd wins 11 to 8 but the attack does no damage they stay locked.

Orc Fighter 2 comes down from the bridge with a double move engages Blackwulf but they don’t fight this turn

Orc Fighter 1 comes up the rear looking to get into the fight but is just out of melee.

COMPANION PHASE

Guthrum moves around a tree it takes a double move and is now the flanking Orc fighter 4 who is fighting Sigurd


Thing were really looking good here

Skuti moves twice as well past the rear of the huge melee hoping to get a eye the last archer.


Gord double moves across the river ford and into the woods toward the Orc Camp





EVENT PHASE

RED 6


”Place a large vulture on the table, anywhere along the heroes’ starting table edge. During the creature phase each turn, this vulture will move 6” directly across the table. It will not force combat or otherwise willingly deviate from this course. Only heroes that can fly can move into combat with the vulture. It this vulture takes damage within line of sight of the Orcs it raises the alarm. Make a note if the vulture manages to exit the other side of the table before the end of the   scenario. “


The Vulture is on the Table.


The this guy shows up and the dice turn against us hardcore.


TURN 4

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates with Sigurd and Thorvald

Blackwulf finds himself facing another Orc (F2) (10,17)  or 13 to 19 the Orcs Blade catches Blackwulf off guard and he bleeds taking 8 damage!


Things start looking really grim for the Rangers

Thorvald swings his Hammer on the wounded Orc Fighter 3 (7,19) he fumbles and the Orc bests him 10 to 21..its bad wound doing 10 damage…Thorvald stays locked in combat with 2 Health remaining!

Sigurd is locked in Combat with Orc Fighter 4 , but now Guthrum is supporting  (3,17) aghhh
The Orcs have come back strong Sigurd is best 19 to 8 with the support and takes 7 damage!



CREATURE PHASE

Following the who has the highest Health

Well roll for Orc Archer, the Vulture, and Orc Fighters 1,2 and 4 and get the Following Order

Archer
Vulture
Orc Fighter 1
Orc Fighter 4
Orc Fighter 2
Orc Fighter 3 (2 health)

Orc Archer moves slightly to get a clear shot at Skuti. Skuti gets +2 for the move and Intervening terrain (6,9) or 10 vs 11  the Arrow hits Skuti but his armor deflects it…

The Vulture Flies 6 inches
Harbinger of Doom



Orc Fighter 1 has pulled Guthrum off the flank of Orc Fighter 4 fighting Sigurd. They fight!
(2,18)  its seems the dice have finally turned against the Rangers.. Guthrum loses 20 to 5 and takes 9 damage! Hes at 3 health!


Thought we had him here but Guthrum falls too!

Orc Fighter 4 goes for kill versus Sigurd! (19,16) Sigurd gets the better of him this and wins 22 to 18…22 minus 11 is 11 damage the Orc falls Sigurd prevails!   The first Orc Fighter falls

Orc Fighter 2 Battles the Blackwulf  (10,17)  this Orc Has Blackwulfs number he loses 19 to 13 for another 8 damage…Blackwulf is staggering with a 3 health remaining!

Orc Fighter 3 is bloody fight with Thorvald its continues..(13,14 ) argh they tie!  Both taking Damage!  Final is 16 to 16  Thorvald takes 5 damage he falls unconscious…the Orc takes 7 damage hes fall dead…

COMPANION PHASE

With Thorvald down Skuti decides to attack the Orc fighting Blackwulf , Skuti draws his knife and enters the fight aided by Blackwulf hes +4  (18,16) close but Skuti prevails with a big wound
22 to 18 its 11 damage and Blackwulf is saved by his trusted companion as Orc 2 Falls dead

Guthrum is locked in battle with Orc Fighter 1 and bleeding badly the fight continues.(11,3 ) Guthrum wins this timje 14 to 5 + 2 damage vs 11 armor means 5 damage to the Orc this Time Guthrum pushes back out of combat!

Gord Moves 9 more inches toward the camp.



EVENT PHASE
No Event this turn


TURN 5

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates, Skuti and Sigurd.

Blackwulf casts his Heal spell on himself and gains 5 health up to 8 total
He moves slightly toward Orc Fighter 1

Sigurd double moves toward the last Orc Archer Brightness Shield out.


The last Orc Archer

Skuti takes point blank shot at wounded Orc Fighter 1 standing in front of him
He shoots (10,2) he hits winning 12 to 2 but only does 1 damage against 11 armor
The Orc has 4 health Remaining..


CREATURE PHASE

Orc Archer 1 shoots at Sigurd..Sigurd uses the bright shield so its +5 vs +2 (4,4) again the Bright Sheild causes a miss although this time the arrow wouldn’t have done any damage.

The Vulture flies 6 more inches

Orc Fighter 1 is closest to Guthrum by some fraction so he moves into combat with him
Things brings him within 1 inch of Blackwulf so it pulls him into support (which I why I inched him last phase after the Heal
They Fight (11,14 ) argh another time +5 vs +2 or 16 to 16 both figures take damage each figure takes has 11 armor meaning each takes 5 damage which kills the Orc but Guthrum also falls in battle as well.  Two companions down!


COMPANION PHASE

Gord  double moves into the camp but cant reach the clue marker or treasure token until next turn.

Finally




EVENT PHASE

 RED ACE



“Soldier. A soldier that has escaped the attack on Tor Varden appears on the table. Place him anywhere you wish on the small side of the table. This soldier has the same Stats as a man-at-arms companion. Treat this soldier as a companion for the rest of the mission, even if that takes your ranger above his normally allowed number of companions. This soldier may not be the first hero to exit the table. “


Soldier emerges from the brush. “I was waiting for the Orcs to clear out, let me join you and get out of here together”, they could of used you like 10 minutes ago, Gord replies..
I gave him a beacon type shield icon for the Tower of Tor Varden

TURN 6

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates Skuti

Blackwulf  moves 2 inches turns and fires his bow at the Orc Archer ..archer gets +2 for Intervening terrain and the hurried shot. (6,13)  He misses

Skuti turn and fires a clean shot (13, 18) he misses as well


CREATURE PHASE

Orc Archer fires again at Sigurd again Sigurd uses the Bright Shield  13,7 wasted this time but the arrow misses. The Shield has 2 uses left.

The Vulture Flies 6” toward the table edge

COMPANION PHASE

Sigurd moves into combat with Orc Archer 1 they fight. (10,3) Sigurd wins 13 to 4, but only does 2 damage




These Orc are way harder to kill than Spiders!



Soldier of Tor Varden, kindly grabs the clue marker for us. Roll (18) it’s the Book of Poems

Gord moves and grabs the treasure token.




EVENT PHASE

NO EVENTS THIS TURN.



TURN 7

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates Skuti

Blackwulf moves to the top of the bridge , takes out his bow and fires at the Vulture.
(10,6) Blackwulf wins (hits) 12 to 6 but with 14 armor the arrow doesn’t damage the flying scavenger

Skuti moves 6 and joins the combat with Sigurd against the last Orc Archer, they fight
(19,13) with the bonus from Sigurd its 22 to 13 and 10 damage (-1 for dagger) but with 8 health the Orc falls!


2 vs 1 finally took him down, Skuti had 2 kills with the Dagger!


CREATURE PHASE

The Vulture flys 6 more inches it off the board next turn.


COMPANION PHASE

Sigurd and  the Soldier from Tor Varden move toward Blackwulf on the Bridge

Gord makes a double move toward the far board edge with the Treasure Token

EVENT PHASE

RED 2
So much for shooting down that Vulture

Rain. A heavy rain starts to fall. All line of sight is reduced to 12” and all shooting attacks are at -2.



TURN 8



RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf group activates  Sigurd and Soldier from Tor Varden

Blackwulf  shoots a hail mary from his Bow which is 11” away  (16,12) -2 to hit he still hits it again  winning 16 to 12…vs 14 armor its 2 damage, not enough to kill it.. it has 2 health left


Damn this wont die!

Sigurd and Soldier from Tor Varden have no missle weapons and stay put for the moment.

CREATURE PHASE

Vulture Leaves the Board, wounded but alive..


COMPANION PHASE

Skuti join his companions on the bridge

Gord exits the board with the Treasure Token


I have one job and I do it well

EVENT PHASE

NO event this turn

TURN 9.

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf  group activates both Skuti and Sigurd

All Three move toward the far side of the bridge and the camp


Regrouping across the river.

CREATURE PHASE

No Creatures on the board

COMPANION PHASE

 Soldier from Tor Varden follows the group.


EVENT PHASE

RED 4



“Orc. Place one Orc fighter at the centre point of the table, then roll a random direction and move the Orc 8” in that direction”.

I roll south as his direction which puts the new Orc very far from where the heroes are.


TURN 10

RANGER PHASE

Blackwulf  group activates both Skuti and Sigurd

All Three move past the camp and off the board.
"We are done here", "On to the Tower!"

CREATURE PHASE

Lone Orc moves 9 inches toward the bridge.


Lone Orc Survivor, We couldnt have reached him last turn if we wanted to

COMPANION PHASE

 Soldier from Tor Varden follows the group, and exits the board.

EVENT PHASE

No event this turn.


END SCENARIO


Well that got pretty hairy there for moment during that huge melee at the foot of the bridge during turn 4. Acouple more bad die rolls and it all could have went down TPK style , but in end the Rangers prevailed again, lets see what happened to our fallen companions Thorvald and Guthrum.


Thorvald roll (6) ugh

BADLY WOUNDED
The figure has suffered a grievous wound. It will heal, but it is going to take time. If the figure is a ranger, it must start the next game at -5 Health. If the figure is a companion, it either starts the next game at -5 Health or it may choose to sit out the rest of the mission.


Guthrum roll (15)  Full Recovery . Hoorah,


EXPERIENCE

3xp for each Orc Kiled – we Killed 9 Orcs.. 27 XP
15 Xp for recovering the Book of Poems
15Xp for having a solider leave the opposite (camp ) board edge.
57 XP

Which brings Ranger Blackwulf to level 2 and he will add + 1 to his Shooting Stat

Sigurd, Skuti and Gord , all get a progression point


Treasure Recovered. Roll (8) Herb or Potion.

Fireheart Green, Interesting definitely will come in handy, gives you an one time extra activation. We will take it!



Next up, the men lick their wounds and proceed to the Tower of Tor Varden

Good news is well  get to use our extra new companion for the rest of this mission so we will have to give him a name.

Bad news is the Vulture got away, that cant be good.

Not sure how I am going to set up the next one I’m sure ill use my dungeon pieces for the lower levels..lots to figure out here.. Happy New Year!



 

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