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The mummy cow

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It’s alive! And it wants hugs! I’ve created another abomination: the mummy cow. That was the working title anyway…not sure what to use it for. A construct, a demon…

Here’s how I did it

Hotglue, wire and orc legs

Head was from an orc banner. The jawbones were hanging from the horns. Cut those off and glued them to the skull. Used greenstuff to close the gap.

Dabbed on the air dry clay, made a pattern and strenghtened it with pva and water mix.

The mummy cow….it kind of grows on you, doesn’t it?

 

 

Playtesting and ulterior motives

Didn’t Mark Twain say “…all ideas are second-hand” or something like “everything is plagiarism”? He was probably right.

When I made the Big Null I thought it was a pretty creative design, mostly from my own imagination, perhaps just a tad influenced by the thin man character. Even the blue color scheme was pretty original for a nullman, I thought. Then yesterday I came over this artwork from the frostgrave folio and realized I had subcounciously soaked it up, much like the nullmen soaks up/drains magic from their victims.

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I usually only read the Sellsword expansion on my phone when playing and this contains no artwork, only the description of nullmen which reads “….nearly featureless humans who glow slightly with an unearthly grey light” I have the folio and have casually flipped through it on several occasions, but I have not studied the artwork carefully yet, and I could not remember having seen this before so it did not occur to me that this image was the inspiration of my craft! I was not disappointed in the lack of my own genius, mind you, but rather fascinated with the subconsciousness of the mind.

Small digression there, on to the item/s of the day: playtesting of the homemade scenario, “The Big Null cometh…” and using the Ulterior motive expansion cards. First, the scenario worked very well! This brings me back to Twain of course since it is basically a  modified version of “the Worm Hunts” scenario by author Joe McCullough. The Big Null represented a stalking unpleasant precense which was what I wanted. It started on my side, of course, and it caused me to focus on keeping a certain distance between it and my spellcasters.

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The Big Null starts in my corner. It will move towards the highest level spellcaster within 18″.

IMG_3633When using ulterior motives the warband has to start within 1″ of the board edge. This combined with the Big Null set up in my corner caused this intimate, shoulder-to-shoulder deployment.

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This was my motive for the game. A friend’s lost child had to be retrieved. That was a bit out of character for the egotistical summoner Sabellicus, who does not bother with friends. It was more suitable with a lost demon snake that had to be retrieved for a price.

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This was my opponents motive. He chose my bear hunter as the insulting party. This suits our narrative well since the bear hunter has had great success despite being the weakest and cheapest member of my warband. Surely a source of irritation for my opponent.

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The table. Goblins gets the initiative and start out with telekinesis and some tactical placements.

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I try to move my guys away from the Big Null with the help of the leap spell.

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These guys go for the rescue and a treasure. I managed to bring the child..erm..demon snake off the board.

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Some rounds in and the Nullman is almost close enough for a charge.

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This is how close it got before the apprentice had to leap herself out of harms way.

Luckily, there was no actual contact with the nullman. I achieved my ulterior motive, but my opponent did not. The cheeky bear hunter escaped without a scratch! He even managed to damage a few enemies on his way. Something tells me the “payback” motive will continue…There were some pretty hairy situations, my opponent lost both wizard and apprentice, but luckily they survived the post game injury rolls. I had more luck, only having to roll for my ranger.

After my 2nd game of using UM I must say I like most of the motives we’ve had so far vengeance, rescue, hunt down a hidden demon….I’ve decided not to read all the cards and take it as it comes from now on. We will re-draw motives that we’ve had already. I don’t think UM overcomplicates things as might be some peoples concerns, but this might depend on the complexity level of the scenario.

 

 

Ulterior motives

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It is probably a bit early for me to review this expansion as I have only played one game with it, but what the hell.

Ulterior motives is an expansion for Frostgrave which introduces a bit of depth to your wizards motivation besides treasure hunting. (For those who play/ed oldschool warhammer quest it is the equivalent of “dark secrets”.)

The expansion set consists of 40 cards with small missions that is to be played within the mission with a few modifications. The rules on how to use ulterior motives are printed on two of the cards. Basically there is some difference in warband placement, number of treasures placed and gained experience by adding ulterior motives to a regular scenario. I don’t really see the point why it should change, but as I said I’m still a noob.

The expansion arrived in the mail the day before we were going to play a scenario called the “coming of ambronnax” from the forgotten pacts expansion. I thought this would complicate the scenario, but it actually ended up adding to its atmosphere, or at least one of the motive cards did. I got a card called “hidden demon” I think. It suited my summoner warband perfectly! A failed summoning had caused a major demon to escape and hide among the opposing warband, posing as a soldier. It would reveal itself after 2 turns and by killing this I would gain an extra 80 xp. Because of the original scenario this meant that we would have 2 major demons on the board by the end of turn 2 + at least 2 failing wretches at any given time. My opponent got a motive which was a bit difficult to understand; to reach a given terrain piece and spend one action would heal him and the wizard would gain 50 xp. This also came with red herrings to throw me off his actual goal, but I couldn’t really care less if he reached that so it was a bit of an anti climax to be honest. There was enough to worry about on the table already! I was able to kill the hidden demon with a critical shot so that was nice as it “knew my true name” which is apparently a big deal for demons.

All in all, it worked out fine with the cards, but I have some annoyances with the actual battle itself! I’ll pick out the worst example:

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Ambronnax materializes. My soldiers get in a real hurry to carry the treasure out.

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We try to damage the demon from a distance and succeeed. Eventually he is actually down to 2 wounds (1 crit from my ranger and one sweet roll on a spell called planar tear). One more spell takes him down to 1 wound!

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…In comes the randomly generated bile hound. This lil’ fella is bound by the goblin witch warband, makes its way to Ambronnax who, after all my efforts, is on his heels with 1 wound left and it goddamn kills him in the final round (Bile hound +1 fight, Ambronnax+8 fight). This gives the goblins 100 xp. …..You’re welcome!

 

The Big Null cometh…

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The big null cometh (PDF) is my version of “The Worm Hunts” scenario from the official Frostgrave book.

This one is probably more suitable for higher level Wizards, maybe 14+? I seriously don’t know since it has not been playtested yet, but I think the Big Null statline and special rules is pretty tough to deal with. We will test it later. Now we are busy with introducing “ulterior motives” to our games…more on that later.

 

 

The Big Null

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Sooo…I’m making minis now, how bout that? I don’t think Reaper or GW have to worry just yet, but it went better than I thought! Using the same technique as with the weirdwood I made a frame with wire and hotglue

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Main frame is thicker than the arms which I made using three strands of more flexible wire “twined” together. Sorry I did not get a pic of that. I added hotglue for strenght and girth. Made a head of greenstuff and added airdry clay to the body, shaping with a tool and some water to smooth out.

Smooth design is more difficult since flaws are more visible. Paintjob came after I had based it with matt black paint mixed with pva.

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Not super happy with the drybrushing, but overall not that bad for this kind of monster I think. It is a large version of the Frostgrave nullman (sellsword expansion), a strange creature that is immune to magic, and will always go after magic users. I have already made a Frostgrave scenario for it:)

Frostgrave House Rules: The Weirdwood

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I usually prefer to play official stuff, and Frostgrave with all its expansions certainly have enough scenarios to go around for a while yet. Still, since I made a weird terrain piece it felt natural to make a simple scenario where it would get some attention by us players as something more than terrain. We playtested it the other day and it went sursprisingly smooth and ended up as a very entertaining game. It’s a simple scenario based partly on “the mausoleum” scenario and the “bones of the earth” spell. There was also some inspiration from the Sellsword expansion with the concept of “null”. The tree can easily be replaced with any other terrain piece like a statue, or a slime pit or something.

Without further ado (pdf file): The weirdwood

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Pandemonium in the forest!

 

A new hire

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-Sooo…what do you make of this, monk?

Sabellicus had for a while felt the need to replace one of his men- the halfling thief. The goblins had reached every location before them. Surely a sign of bad intelligence gathering by the little git. The new hire was claimed to be very knowledgeable in the field of creatures- a walking bestiary of sorts. Now they had arrived first to a forest clearing where a looming tree stood guard over piles of treasure.

– Certainly not of a demonic nature. I believe it to have the traits of a large construct, but not crafted by the hands of an ordinary wizard, mind you. It is very, very old…

The monk spoke in a calm voice, but his eyes betrayed his attempt to hide the excitement he felt.

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– I sense ancient wisdom…and intense greed from it. If you do not mind, I would very much like to have a closer look…

– Not at all, the wizard said with a grin, but if you see any treasure…just bring it back here would you…?

Before Sabellicus had even finished his sentence, the monk was taking quick, long strides towards the tree.

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Next up is a scenario I put together with the Weirdwood in a central role and a playtest, stay tuned!

 

 

Monk

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I wanted to hire a monk for my warband. Made a small conversion of a barbarian from the official fg sprue I got with the folio nickstarter. I cut the blade off the two handed axe (that hurt because it was a cool axe) and glued gw lizardmen blades to both ends. Gave him a bit of a shaolin/celtic treatment and voila, a shaolin-barbarian monk! He will annihilate those damn goblins!

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Low light shots

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-Cap! We’ve lost the others…maybe we should double back?

-Shh…you hear something?

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*AOOOMMMMMMMM!*

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*AAAAOOOOOMMMMM!!!*

Haha, wow. Respect to those who successfully take low light shots! There is a whole science involved with indirect light and low emitting light sources, reflection and so on. At least I could sort of show how the led light looks. It is the flickering type so that gives a pretty cool effect realtime. Also the angle top-down gives the best effect, which is the usual angle for gaming.

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