After having bought Saga: Age of Magic and the Book of Battles at Salute, UndeadHighElf and I got two games in. With it being our first games of Saga, we skipped magic and war machines and played a standard Clash of Warlords, followed by Prized Possessions.
Pitching my Night Goblins against Dwarfs, I got trashed twice. The main setback in the first battle came early when my two trolls were beaten back by a handful of hand gunners defending a wall, neutralising my main strike force. In game two, I managed to destroy two of the three artillery pieces the stunties were trying to deliver to the local Elector Count, but the casualties suffered in doing so proved too high a prize to pay.
We really enjoyed the system and both left with plenty of plans for future Saga forces. With these Night Goblins being my first warband specifically built for Saga (I have a separate army for Warhammer Fantasy Battle), I have since expanded them using some spare models.
I painted up Gobbla and Gnasher and two Squig Herder teams which I can now use either as a unit of Hearthguard (potentially with heavy weapons) or Berserkers in a Horde force.
In order to have a standard bearer for both of my Warrior units, I painted up a classic Kev Adams sculpt. Finally, the archers were strengthened to a full Levy band of twelve, using plastic models I didn’t have a use for previously.
I finished painting the remaining Night Goblins from the Knightmare Miniatures range so my warband is expanded and as complete as it currently can be. Thinking ahead for Saga, I can field three units of warriors, three trolls (I assume there will be some monster/monstrous creature slot), a shaman/wizard and the warlord.
While looking for any release info or beta rules that might be floating around (no luck there), I did come across a fan made project called A Fantastic Saga. Haven’t tried it, but clearly a lot of work has gone into the expanded rules and fantasy races that are available, so definitely worth checking out. Using the Kobaloi list, I could field my Night Goblins as a 6 points force.
Knightmare Miniatures recently ran a Kickstarter to expand their mostly Kev Adams sculpted Greenskin Wars range. I used that opportunity to pick up the new Doom Goblins and a few more wolf riders and feral goblins.
Alongside the four goblin warriors that I am still working on, the Doom Goblins received a new leader in the shape of this big bruiser carrying a massive morning star. Might makes right in goblin society, so there wasn’t much discussion regarding his role amongst the expanding tribe.
I think Kev Adams is doing some of his best work at the moment with this range so I really need to catch up with my painting. Also still looking forward to Saga Fantasy, although a generic goblin list would probably not do justice to their variety. Thinking about play testing the Doom Goblins as Saxons.
We had our initial clash of arms playing Frostgrave in a Warhammer Old World setting. My mate picked Night Goblins with a Summoner while I took the Undead lead by a Necromancer. Wanting to familiarise ourselves with the core rules, we played a simple scenario with six treasures up for grabs. We also chose our spells without the need for additional templates or figures to represent them, so they were mostly direct damage or buffs.
The Night Goblins deployed in a horde in the left corner of the 3×3 table while I split my forces up into a group lead by the wizard and a second with the apprentice. While the Night Goblins initially swarmed over the first treasure pile, I sent my two thugs to search one each and attempt to carry it to safety.
The first major skirmish erupted when a group lead by my apprentice clashed with goblin fighters in a house ruin containing more treasure. With an infantryman dispatched through a fireball from afar and a second being cut down by a lowly goblin thug, I lost this fight and any hope of a win.
While one of my thugs escaped with a treasure undisturbed off the Eastern board edge, the second was threatened by the slavering squig. I managed to intercept it at the last moment with a man-at-arms, but failed to kill it. Shortly after, the Night Goblin apprentice blew up its own squig with a fireball, presumably to roast it in preparation for the victory banquet.
With just yards to go, my second thuggish zombie was brought down by a flurry of arrows, dropping its treasure token.
The Night Goblins now had control of the table, and my skeleton’s charge against the apprentice failed to wound him. Shortly after it was smashed to pieces, and my surviving Necromancer decided to slink away into the darkness.
With a final treasure score of 5:1 for the Night Goblins and a kill ratio of 6:2, I failed to capitalise on my early gains and positioning. Already being outnumbered, delegating two thugs to treasure carrying duty from the start was probably not a good decision in hindsight, though I very nearly got away with a second treasure while the goblins had secured none thus far. I had expected the main combat to swing my way, but the loss of an infantryman at the last moment through magic and the quick defeat of the second destroyed my main fighting force.
Frostgrave is definitely a very killy system, fittingly reminiscent of Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay. A high attack roll will not only often win the combat but also directly cause a maximum amount of damage, and it is quite possible to lose soldiers through a single strike or spell. Especially with consistent rolls of 20. Thanks, blue die of death.
This week will see me dusting off my copy of Frostgrave to finally have a game. A mate and I are planning on getting a campaign going, hopefully recruiting along the way.
Rather than setting the story in Felstad, we’ll be drawing on the background of the Old World however, so it is more akin to Mordheim with wizards and various fantasy races. As gangs, I am therefore drawing on my existing Warhammer Fantasy Battle armies without having to paint everything from scratch. For the first gaming session I put together Night Goblins, Dwarfs and Undead, only needing to finish painting a shaman and warrior of their respective armies which had been long overdue anyway.
While there are no different racial characteristics and stats in Frostgrave, I selected the war bands to reflect some of their archetypes. The Dwarfs are fewer in numbers but with better equipment and stats due to their troop types.
For the Night Goblins I am mainly using the Kev Adams sculpts by Knightmare Miniatures, reinforced by some Citadel figures from my Warhammer Fantasy Battle army.
The Undead are raised from my Warhammer 3rd Edition forces, with zombies representing thugs and skeletons other troop types.
How these work as gangs in Frostgrave, we’ll find out. A drawback of using “soldiers” from other armies is the lack of figures representing certain character classes like thieves, but with a bit of artistic licence and kit bashing I could add them where needed. In any case I would want to stick with classes to fit a certain fantasy race, and where that is the case, miniatures will also be easier to find.