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Author Topic: Raid on the Orc Village (WIP)  (Read 3438 times)

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Offline Jo

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Raid on the Orc Village (WIP)
« on: May 04, 2012, 11:41:47 PM »
Hello all,

I am drafting the scenario of the annual warmaster event we play with a group of friends. Each year we try to create some special terrain and this year we have settled on an Orc Village (50x40 cm) that is hidden inside a valley. The idea I have in mind is presented below. My main question for this group is to help me figure out a good balance for points. We will be playing a 5 player battle with 2 Orc players and 3 'good guys'.

The fluff
Ikkath Huulg, the Tyrant of the Grey Mountains, is an Orc Warboss that has been terrorizing both Empire and Bretonnian settlements for the past years. His well protected lair is hidden in the valley of the Kraansk river close to an old dwarven mine. Knowing that they would need joint forces the Bretonnian, Empire and Dwarven leaders met in secret to decide on a battleplan. Bretonnian and Empire troops would seal off the main valley entrance. The dwarven army would enter via the secret entrance in the mine system, acting as a surprise element in the battle.
The plans have been sped up recently with Ikkath and his warclan raiding a Bretonnian town and taking the Bretonnian Baron's niece as a hostage/midnight snack. The next morning two armies are preparing for war on the foggy banks of the Kraansk valley, waiting for the signal of the Dwarven player, whatever that might mean. And then a huge explosion breaks the silence in the valley, followed by a gigantic column of smoke and the sound of war drums. The battle for the Kraansk Mines has begun...

The Armies
  • The Orc Battleforce led by Ikkath on his War Wyvern. The Orc force will be around 3500 points (depending on the painting I can get done before the 10th of June). Given the fact that the O&G army has to defend its lair and the terrorizing impact of Ikkath I would only let them break after 2/3 of the army has been destroyed. There is only a single army so quite some carnage will be needed before they break.
  • The Empire army led by Graf Von Zwiebelsnacker who holds a grudge against Ikkath. Points to be decided, regular army restrictions.
  • The Bretonnian army led by Baron Sylvain Mortimer de Sainte Mirbeau-Brasseur. Points to be decided, regular army restrictions
  • The Dwarven army led by Bumli Wolfric, natural heir to the Kraansk Mine and general of the Dwarven Mercenary Army. Points to be decided, restricted to things that can be shoved through narrow mines, so no gyrocopters or war altars. I'm not certain about artillery though, I don't know how bad it would be for a dwarven army to turn up to the battle without artillery so any input welcome.

The Terrain
The game will be played on a table of about 140x200 cm with the players being located all around the table.

The Kraansk river runs over the length of the table. I'm going to add a bridge in the middle of the table for artillery, chariots and cavalry to pass through. The river is 10 cm wide and can be crossed by infantry with a half move penalty. Troops on the edge of the river count as defended against troops crossing it. The lower side of the river is made up of impassible cliff faces, two corners on the upper side as well. The Orc village is sitting on top of a small elevation, the back resting against cliffs.

The entrances to the valley are where the Kraansk river crosses the table edge. There is also an escape route for the Orcs next to the village, I'm going to put up a few forests there to make it a bit more difficult for the Orcs to use the escape route.

The dwarven mine is hidden in the beginning of the game by forest etc (the nice thing about newly made terrain - my fellow gamers don't know that there is a piece with a small cave  :).

Deployment will be special for each army:
  • The Empire and Bretonnian armies have to divide their troops over the upper and lower banks of the river. Next to that they have to specify the marching order for each of the parts. The troops will enter the gaming table on the first turn, moving brigade by brigade as explained in the special deployment options of WMA. The tactical choice for these armies is getting two separate armies on the table relatively fast, or a single force a bit slower.
  • The Dwarven player also indicates the marching order of its troops. They will only have a single entry point so they will trinkle in quite slow. But with a Ld10 General that might not be so much slower...
  • The Orc player deploys his entire force first but at least 60 cm from where the river crosses the table edge. An important note: the Orc player is not aware of the mine entrance so could deploy relatively close to it. I have to check on the number of units that could be deployed in the village but that will be restricted by available space.

The Objectives
Each force will have different objectives in this battle with nobody knowing the other players objectives:
  • The Orc player should defend the village (500 VP) or make sure that he has a safe exit point out of the valley (250 VP for each exit point not in possession of an enemy player). Each enemy army broken earns 500 VPs.
  • The Bretonnian army should rescue the maiden from the village (500 VP) and make sure the Orcs don't flee into Bretonnian territory (250 VP). The maiden can be rescued if a unit of knights enters and then leaves the village and survives until the end of the battle. The Orcs don't flee the wrong way if the entrance to the valley is in Bretonnian hands at the end of the battle.
  • The Empire army should also protect their side of the valley (250 VP) and they should try to kill Ikkath (500 VP).
  • The Dwarven player wants to destroy the village (250 VP) and make sure that the Orcs don't flee up into the mountains (500 VP) where they will remain a nuisance forever. They have to make sure that the northern exit point is held by one of it's allies at the end of the battle.

The battle lasts for a maximum of 7 turns, or when one side has completely broken (general slain or break value reached). Recall that the O&G player will be tough to break.

My questions to all of you
  • I am currently thinking on 1500 points for each of the allied armies, does that seem balanced?
  • Do you think the deployment rules are doable? I don't know after how many turns these armies will be completely deployed.
  • Are the VPs for the objectives not too high for such a battle? The O&G players should behave quite aggressively and try to destroy one of the advancing armies instead of remaining locked up in the village. So they should earn VPs by destroying enemy armies.
The goal of the game is to have a healthy competition between the good guys for their own objectives and for the O&G player to survive yet bash some skulls.

Again, any input is greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance,


Offline Edmund2011

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Re: Raid on the Orc Village (WIP)
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2012, 11:13:14 AM »
It seems a very exciting scenario!

My impressions:

- A little bit complex in general. If players have experience with WM, ok. If not too much I would try to simplify things a little bit.
- Making the break point of the O&G 2/3 instead 1/2 is a great change on the rules. Why don't you play with two O&G Generals (and armies) instead, each with the usual break point?
- I don't understand the O&G "fleeing idea" and the scape route of the scenario (VP, fleeing routers,..). Is it expected them to flee?
- The village counts as fortified? has it walls? I am thinking about the "gallant cavaliers" ;)

O&G should take advantge of deploying all together to move fast, and defend the river AND THE BRIDGE and take advantage of hills and village.

Keep in mind that cavalry can't enter the "mountains" and the river... you are going to add some forests too.

"Good side" deploy quite separated, and dwarves far away and late in the turn. I would let a gyro to be chosen (it can arrive "flying" to the valley once the darves emerge).

Sounds like a lot of fun!

Offline Jo

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Re: Raid on the Orc Village (WIP)
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2012, 12:45:18 PM »
Thanks for the input Edmund.

I have given this some more thought and decided to simplify the scenario as you suggested:
- Complete armies can be deployed at the start of the battle. Otherwise it will take too long to get to a real combat.
- There will be 6-7 players so we will use 3 armies of the same points value per side. I'm still wondering whether it should be 1.500 or 2.000 points per army (so 4.500 or 6.000 pts battles).
- Nothing special about the break values - each army has it's own break value calculated in the regular way.

I am still wondering whether the river will add more fun or more hindrance to the battle. Any input there is more than welcome.


Offline frogbear

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Re: Raid on the Orc Village (WIP)
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2012, 02:00:40 PM »
The Bretonnian army should rescue the maiden from the village (500 VP) and make sure the Orcs don't flee into Bretonnian territory (250 VP). The maiden can be rescued if a unit of knights enters and then leaves the village and survives until the end of the battle.
So if the Kinghts get in there with one order, and then another order is given and they leave, do they have the maiden? If so that is a very quick turn

What if the Knights charge into the village, force a unit back and they choose to not follow and rather retreat back, do they have the maiden?

Both I think are viable questions for those precious 500 points

I would also echo Edmond's question:
- The village counts as fortified? has it walls?

I think that 1500 points each for the 3 good-aligned forces is about right. While I think the Gyrocopter arriving is viable, I do not think that Artillery is doable through the mines when haste is the main priority unless you see them arriving on a random turn.

If there is only 1 crossing, the orcs really do need to protect the bridge at all costs and support/fall back up the hill just to use up time (turns).

I am not clear however on the crossings apart from the bridge. Can the river be crossed by cavalry/chariots at any point other than the bridge in the middle?

I also think 1 general vs 3 is going to be tough, and I would think breaking the orcs up into a 1500 and 2000 point force each would be a viable option as well and give the Orc player a little bit more of a competitive edge.

Offline Dobbsy

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Re: Raid on the Orc Village (WIP)
« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2012, 01:33:12 PM »
...Gyrocopter lands in the orc town square and airlifts the maiden, special forces-style, out to the waiting kniggets...?  ;D

Offline Jo

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Re: Raid on the Orc Village (WIP)
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2012, 07:47:10 PM »
...Gyrocopter lands in the orc town square and airlifts the maiden, special forces-style, out to the waiting kniggets...?  ;D

We will be running a very simplified version of this scenario this weekend. Only the terrain has remained the same :)

The O&G players start with a defending army of 3.500 points of their army, spread over two contingents as they see fit.

There are 2 armies attacking the village, split into the following part:
- A 2000 point empire army entering at the "Empire Entry"point.
- A 2000 point High Elf fast strike contingent entering from the "Dwarven Mine" point. I have changed the cover slightly so they can come down a hillside. This contingent can not field artillery or silver hems.
- A 2000 point High Elf contingent representing the remaining part of the HE force. Army limitations are calculated on the 4000 points so this part can be full of artillery or heavy cavalry as the HE players see fit. It starts at almost the same place as the Empire army, only on the other bank of the river. The HE and Empire players can decide on which river bank each will deploy but it has to be a different one.

There is a supplementary O&G force that has to try to avoid the ambush. I held a "points auction" for this with each player bidding for the minimum force the O&G should have on top of the initial 3.500 points to defend against 6.000 points of HE and Empire. I took the highest value of the three lowest bids, resulting in an additional 1.500 points of O&G. This force will enter play starting from the "Bretonnian entry point" on the map.

- The 3.500 initial O&G force has to deploy first, 60cm away from the HE/Empire deployment zones.
- The other armies will deploy according to the Warmaster ancients "deploy from march" rules meaning at the beginning of the turn the player can put a limited number of units on the table in a predefined marching order (determined prior to the battle).

Start of Battle:
- HE and Empire get the first turn as they are attacking.

Game Objectives:
- O&G village is worth 2 VPs
- Each of the 3 valley entrances is worth 1 VP.
- Empire + HE army has to capture at least 3 VPs worth of objectives at the end of the battle to be successful.
- Battle lasts for a maximum of 8 turns.
- Each of the 6 contingents has its own break value, own commanders and own units. Army generals are the only ones that can command other contingents from the same army (se HE general cannot command Empire troops).

Based on the feedback from Edmund I have simplified the scenario so the focus is again on the tactics. There is a novice player joining us and for a few of the players this will be their first game this year as well.

What I think will happen:
- Some heavy fighting at the bridge with mainly infantry units at the beginning of the battle, heavy cavalry reinforcements coming in the following turns.
- A slow march to the village from the HE/Empire army that deploys on the same bank as the village.
- A quick Empire/HE flank march on the other river bank with cavalry heading for the bridge and infantry threatening the O&G river flank.
- A very funny march of the O&G reinforcements that have to rush in as fast as they can, but will probably become splintered along the way.

Now let's get the final painting done...