Sunday, June 30, 2013

Fantasy Warriors

Today I played "Fantasy Warriors", a game put out by Grenadier in the early 90's. I bought the game just recently, but I have fond memories from the early 90's of heading down to my LGS and perusing racks of Grenadier figures. Today the only LGS is a GW store, or comic book stores with a smattering of GW stuff. Thank goodness for the internet!

Fantasy Warriors comes in a big box with two armies of plastic figures, orcs and dwarves. There are three kinds of each, and special figures like standard bearers and leaders need to be converted or painted distinctly. Specials include leaders, champions, musicians and standard bearers like in WFB 3rd. There are also soothsayers, priests, generals, heroes (separate from generals) and wizards.

Fantasy Warriors has a lot of cool stuff you can do. Right at the beginning you can have your general make a boast, which gives you bonuses if he lives up to it, but penalties if he can't walk the walk. You can also have your soothsayers read the omens. What's more units can threaten other units, either making them flee or instead making them so mad they fight all the harder.

The generals job is to assign orders to the different commands. Commands cannot do whatever they like, if you want them to do something different you'll need to send a messenger with a new order - and hope your captain agrees to obey the order!

Todays game was Orcs with a mercenary command of human foot knights, against dwarves with a mercenary command of wood elf archers. Neither side paid their mercs well (resulting in lower point cost), making them more likely to run, or even betray their employer.

Orcs: Warchief Lvl 4, Battle Leader Lvl 3, Wizard 50 spell points, Juggernaut (huge monster), 10 archers, 8 veteran archers, 12 swords, 12 spears and two units of 15 human foot knights, paid only half their wages.

Dwarves: Warchief lvl 5, battle leader lvl 4, 12 axes, 10 x-bows, 10 spears, 1 hero, giant cannon and 20 half-paid wood elf archers.

The orcs from left: Warriors, warriors, extremely heavy Juggernaut,
archers, veteran archers, merc foot knights and more merc foot knights.

The dwarves from left: Wood elf archers, x-bows, spears, axes and cannon.

To start things off with a bang, the dwarven cannon blasted the smithereens out of the juggernaut, thus eliminating the largest threat in one blow. The dwarf cannon has a neat rule: you can overload the cannon with extra powder and shot for more damage, at the risk of an explosion that kills everything in 12" - I've had it take out a good chunk of my army once! But this time it behaved. The orc wizard cast eldritch command - a spell that magically transmits orders from the general immediately to a commander, without the need for sending a messenger. The best spell in the game sometimes! But the wizard had no luck, casting it three times before he could order the foot knights to advance. It cost him half his power. In Fantasy warriors a wizard can cast spells any time, as often as he likes...until he runs out of magic power.

The orcs and men continued to advance for several turns. The cannon eventually destroyed a unit of orcs, while the elves long bows made little impression on the foot knights heavy armour. Dwarf crossbows had better luck on orc archers. Two separate orc units charged the cannon crew, and each was defeated separately thanks to the dwarven hero stationed in that unit. The foot knights waded through the hail of arrows from the elves, then slaughtered the entire unit and its commander. This caused a command test from the dwarves which all remaining commands passed smoothly. 

The orc wizard used his remaining power to attempt to kill the dwarven hero, but overstretched and killed himself instead. This caused the orcs to take a command test. The warchief held on, the battleleader fled, but worst of all the foot knights failed badly. The orcs had taken many causalties, and the foot knights were already upset at being underpaid so a few bad rolls later, the knights defected and joined the dwarves. This left the orc warchief completely alone on the battlefield, and the game over.

Never underpay your mercenaries.
The orc warlord all alone.

A fun game, good to pass away a grey day. I think Fantasy Warriors would work much better with truly huge armies with lots of different commands and captains. However, that would take up a lot of space and result in a very long game.

Thanks for reading!

The dog sulks after his orc army loses.