Saturday, 10 January 2015

Back to Prax

In days of distant memory, long before I got into Ancients, I used to do a lot of Gloranthan gaming with a group of friends known as the "Glorygeeks".  We used the Hordes of the Things rules, and later Command and Colors to run battles set in the Runequest world of Glorantha.

I thought it would be a lot of fun to get some of the old models out and try them with a slightly adapted version of my "To the Strongest!" rules. The majority of the figures are from Ian Notter's collection. It proved pretty easy to fit all of the troop types in- the Lunar mages of the Minor Classes became cannon, for example, and the Rhino Riders cataphracts. 

I played the progressive (=evil expansionist) Lunar forces, with their Sable rider allies, fighting against Ian's coalition of reactionary (=freedom loving) Praxian nomads.  My left consisted of the Sable riders; more skirmish-y than their Bison-riding foes, and moreover half of the heavier sables were "lost!" off table, to boot. Below the chief and his shaman look down from the hill upon a rather scary buffalo herd!  All photos are clickable.

My right had a screen of Lunar infantry (the Red Dragoons and Steel Sword Legion) protecting no less than three units of Minor Classes spell casters. You may be able to make out the summoned "Lunes" that will shortly be driving some of the nomads (and Ian) insane.  On either flank of the line are a pair of War Triceratops, with archer crew.  Opposite the mass of crimson soldiery is the lighter Praxian wing; Pol Joni horse-riders (looking very much like native Americans), the Pavis Royal Guard on their zebras, a combined unit of Ostrich riders and the virgin Yelnorans on their unicorns. On the hill are the Baboon Troop and some Rhino riders are in reserve.

I'll briefly describe the game.  In the first turn, the Praxians rode forward and fired a withering volley at the Lunars. The very first arrow...

...seriously wounded the Lunar commander, who retired form the field, calling for a healer. In the first Lunar turn the furious mages launched wave after wave of Lunes against the Praxians, and one unit after another was driven screaming from the battlefield (I was phenomenally lucky).  

To cut a long story short the ponderous Bison advance pushed the Sables back, and flanked them; it was looking pretty hairy on my left.  However the Lunars drove all before them and were threatening the Praxian camp, and the nomads decided to "leg it" whilst they still had a chance.  

My shooting and spell casting was incredibly lucky, not least because there is a roughly 1 in 12 chance of the mages (= cannon) driving themselves insane up each time they cast a spell! We had a very enjoyable game, washed down with a delightful bottle of Trivento Argentinian Malbec. After the game we have both started to plot expansions to our Praxian forces, of which more, anon.

As well as being a fantasy game, this was unusual because it was the first time we played with numbered chits, drawn from a cup, instead of playing cards. You may be able to make some out in the photo above. They worked really well and I'll start selling them from the To the Strongest! shop in the next week or so. 

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