There are a million stories in Arcadia. This is one of them. The names have not been changed to protect the innocent.
Apollo. I invited a relative over for the weekend (he doesn't get out much) and a couple of Dryads, who are mad for gods and demigods. I also had the builders in, doing some work on the patio. Next thing we knew, young Hermes turns up with these young lads, looking to nick my cattle! Well, it started off good natured fun-.
Apollo Q2 C4 Bard, Burst of light, Healing, Prophecy, Plague, Legendary shooter, Shooter Long 380
Minotaur Q3 C3 Dashing, Hammering blow, Labyrinth, Armoured, Mounted, Long, Boasting @164
2 Cyclops Q3 C3 Huge Shooter medium @76 = 152
8 Cyclops with clubs Q4 C2 (OO)Drunkard @ 15 = 120
8 Cyclops with stones Q4 C2 (OO)Drunkard Shooter medium @ 20 = 160
2 Dryads (OO) Q4 C1 Forester @10 = 20
Hermes. It was a lark, I knew Apollo was a good sport. I got these lads together and we were just going to dash in, sneak off with the cattle.
Hermes Q2 C3 Super speed, Free disengage, stealth, v difficult target. 260
3 Chariot Heroes (young) Q3 C3, Armoured, Mounted, Long, Boasting @112= 336
4 Chariots Q4, C3, (OO) Armoured, Dashing Greedy, Long move, Mounted @ 44 = 172
4 Centaurs Q4 C3 Drunkard, Dashing, Long move @ 35 = 140
3 Centaur Archers Q4 C3 Drunkard, Long move, Shooting Long @ 30 = 90
A brief rules summary:
This is the first test of my “upgrades” based on the new Celtic book. Just mine, not official, but please feel free to use, test and make informed criticism.
Bad Form. Killing of horses or charioteers by a hero is bad form. The hero's Q score is dropped by one for the rest of the game. This does not apply to undead or monster-legends.
The chariot has 4 aspects, an attack must contact the most obvious:
Front, if contacting the horses they count as Q4 C2 with a -2 in combat.
Left, the hero's side, any attacks are against him or her.
Right, the charioteers side, Q4 C1. The hero may use the spear but gains no plus.
Rear, either passenger, again the hero get no plus.
Shooting at chariots:
From front-1, side, 0, rear +1
Roll D6 0-3 horse hit, 4 charioteer, 5,6 hero.
Charioteer killed, hero can take reins and make moves as normal, but cannot use shock of impact, dashing or height advantages.
Horses killed, the chariot is removed from play and the hero is catapulted 1 move distance in the direction of travel. If he lands on or in an enemy unit its an attack, (I'd include shock of impact!) if not count as prone!
Hero killed, the chariot is either removed or retires on the charioteers Q. Any hero with Greedy must stop to strip the body.
Legendary Boast (mine differs from the Celtic original – how? Buy the book!) 8 points
Within 3 turns I will slay (named enemy) legend costing more points. The Legend cannot be in or engage in another fight & target not reduced Q or C.
For 3 turns the hero will inflict at least 1 casualty to opponents force of any tier.
You shall not pass! For 3 turns. Hero must be dismounted and in contact with 1 or more CO units who gain Steadfast as long as they stay in contact. At the end of the turn the whole group and any OO in contact may advance 1 short IF not in contact. I'm thinking a (the) Rock version of Herakles, Ajax or Odysseus here.
If the Legend succeeds they become inspiring. All mortals within 1 Medium gets +1to Q for activation and morale.
Non-heroic, heroic charioteers. These are near identical to the above. In 15mm I use two on a CD, use one 28mm. The CD represents the dashing, maneuvering style of movement.
Q4, C3, Armoured, Dashing Greedy, Long move, Mounted (23+5+4-3+8+7) = 44 Rare (4)
The Game. This is easiest divided into quarters. But first up the deployment- every unit was OO, so despite being short on points, they filled the table and for the first time we had to consider being more than a long away. Incidentally, there were only 14 humans on the field. Tony took Apollo and the clincher was the cyclops in the bullfield and Apollo just behind the fields.
My far right – chariot unit. This went haring down (3 long moves) down the flank and hit the cyclops clubmen time after time. I only managed to kill one, but they kept being pushed back! Finally I got in LOS of Apollo and a snap shot saw one hero explode in a cyan burst. At this they retreated, being pursued but not caught by the clubmen- who run into Hermes, to the suprise of both. The chariots performed as expected, hitting with glancing blows and lots of manoever. Fun to play, they are never going to be game-changers, but I'll take fun every day.
Right. Legendary charioteer Moudicus, seeing a swarm of sober cyclops before him Boasts (I took a boast to take one action?) that he will kill for 3. Bad move. He moves into contact, but no kill, like his other contemporaries he doesn't kill, just push back, in fact they sort of circle. They never manage to get a throw in though. Eventually he does do some damage, but too late to save his reputation.
Centaur archers slide into a gap, hop (I'd do it very, very carefully if a centaur, no matter how pissed!) over the hedge into the cow field, spread among the cows and look! A cyclops has done the same. Now we debated if he shielded his face or his nuts with a rock, but whichever- one good shot and he's down! Apollo takes exception and opens up, shooting them all.
Centre. Mighty hero Curlingus is faced with a cyclops in a field with a bull. His charioteer gives him a “I ain't going in there!” look so he's forced to dismount and advance on the foe. (I'd considered dismounted figures for crashes, here's the hint- you need dismount figures). There follows a ding-dong battle with the cyclops getting the upper hand, forcing Curlingus back and finally killing him with a well dropped rock. The centaur spear took the advantage and moved on the bull, capturing it – but then Apollo starts his murderous assault, chasing the last survivor off the board, aided by a pushback result.
Left. Mighty Larryeathese is faced with the Minotaur and a Cyclops. With a mighty proclamation he informs the Minotaur that “Eee's gonna 'ave 'im” (Look I asked Homer, he was there, that's what he said) and thundered forward. The Cyclops throws a rock and misses (no sense of honour & fair play!) this may have spooked the horses, because the Minotaur coming in strong rolls a 1. Larryeathese rolls a 6, the Minotaur crashes and bursts into flames. Larryeathese fails his Q roll, so stops, dismounts and starts stripping the dead Minotaur. The cyclops has his eye in now, lobs another rock onto Larryeathese head, who looks up- splat! The cyclops then moves into the cattlepen for his fateful encounter-.
You will note that Hermes did nothing other than hide from Apollo's arrows and mighty wrath. My plan had been to use the centaurs & Hermes to shuttle the cattle to other units, then get away with as many as possible. No plan survives contact with a cyclops!
The chariot rules and Boast impose modes of action on the legends. This is a game changer, a game improver! I'm planning a big Trojan War battle for the later Achaean test. Next week its Japans turn.