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Isle of Blades and Heroes


Last Knight
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So, over in this"]http://www.reapermin...ge__st__75]this thread[/url] I was drawn into a segue about "...schemes (I have) in mind for an island conquest campaign, loosely inspired by Heroes of Might & Magic..." There really wasn't much more to it than that one line, since I haven't even talked my player group into it yet - I picture this as something of a refereed game, where each group starts out as a "nation" shipwrecked on a mysterious island, and must explore and battle each other for dominance. This was pretty much directly inspired by a HoMM campaign I played years ago, and should probably go research before this thread goes much further...

 

ANYWAY.

 

Panzer_Engel jumped in with, "Interesting. . . . How big do you envisage the bands getting, and do you plan any HoMM - style resource gathering/management? Or troop recruitment from settlements in conquered territories?"

 

To which I was forced to actually start putting some of the vague ideas I had into words. "Not sure about the band size, depends on the players and how the game goes. Probably stick around 3 to 500 points. Yes on reinforcements from the cities; having local support would be required, really. Resource gathering would be along the lines as outlined in Gold & Deeds, with other post victory/ territory control bonuses"

Him: "Hmm. . . . And fortifying and/or garrisoning your settlements?"

 

Me: "One of my big desires is to see rewards for playing, without the whole process becoming unbalanced by Avid Wargamer Who Always Wins* playing a dozen games when everyone else can only fit in one or two, building an empire and wiping everyone out completely. At the same time, like I said, rewards; I'd like to see everybody's nation-states grow stronger and more awesome. So there'll be some checks and balances involved as far as resource rewards.

 

What I'm thinking right now is that you get a certain amount of points total, and you can assign those around; say 1000 points for your nation, but your maximum roaming war-band can only be 400 (ballpark numbers, bear with me). So, you can have two warbands at 400, or three at 300, and then those leftover points can be troops back at home.

 

Another option would be using the stats for city militia, which are low-grade troops, as a freebie - say, 100 or 200 points of militia guard the cities - and then depending on your last moves, your warband might be home when the enemy comes raiding. Or maybe you can buy garrison options from your resources.

 

All of these are things that can be hashed out, but we should probably start a separate thread for that.."

 

 

Which brings us here, to a brand spanking new thread. I put it in General Fantasy because, well, it's going to be a fantasy setting; although most of us are previous Warmahordes players, or at least have plenty of Privateer Press made models, so I'm willing to throw in gunpowder, treason, and plot* as needed, and maybe even warjacks if we can find decent enough rules for them.** Thus far this is entirely speculative; I haven't even pitched the idea at my players yet, I'm still trying to woo them into the loving arms of Song of Blades and Heroes. When you add in the fact that we're all pretty distractible, plus I'm a merchant mariner with a habit of leaving the country for months at a time... well, it's all fairly speculative.

 

Still, could be a fun mental exercise if nothing else, and maybe somebody else out there will get some good out of it. ::): So, here we are.

 

 

*It's Guy Fawkes Day, this was required.

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Sounds fun. Did you discuss this on the SoBaH Yahoo Group?

 

For winning battles, empires can win something besides resources towards fighting. Many countries spent their loot on "higher pursuits" such as culture and the arts. You could even change the winning conditions so that the winning player may not have the largest empire at the end of the game, but has the highest civilization.

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Sounds fun. Did you discuss this on the SoBaH Yahoo Group?

 

I have not. As much as I like that they have such an active community, every time I try to read the Yahoo group I die a little inside. Yahoo groups format terribly; I really wish they'd gone with a forum software (like this) rather than a newsgroup thing.

 

For winning battles, empires can win something besides resources towards fighting. Many countries spent their loot on "higher pursuits" such as culture and the arts. You could even change the winning conditions so that the winning player may not have the largest empire at the end of the game, but has the highest civilization.

 

That's an interesting idea, but it does take a bit away from a miniatures wargame. On the other hand, it could be interesting to have cultural victories formed by delves into monster-infested dungeons below the island... maybe put in a sidequest of an ancient evil sleeping in the bowels of the island (giant Bones C'thulhu and undead dragons, I'm thinking of you...) that can be awakened and enlisted, or must be destroyed before it destroys all? Discovering ancient secrets of steampunkery?

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Thus far this is entirely speculative; I haven't even pitched the idea at my players yet, I'm still trying to woo them into the loving arms of Song of Blades and Heroes. When you add in the fact that we're all pretty distractible, plus I'm a merchant mariner with a habit of leaving the country for months at a time... well, it's all fairly speculative.

 

". . . ."

 

. . . And now I feel bad about prodding you about it.

 

Still, we've started. . . . So here are a few random ideas. I'm going to try to avoid this turning into an essay, so I'll confine myself to responding to the points here, or issues which might come up in the course of this particular campaign.

 

However. . . . Some general speculation, suggestions and queries.

 

The first question must be, will you be participating in the campaign, or acting as a moderator only?

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Yes. That is to say, I would be the GM, and I would run neutral factions; the island natives, roving dragons, dungeon denizens, and so on. I would be the army against which the odd man out could play, or if nobody shows up that week. My armies wouldn't gain experience, but to make it up I might play with more points.

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I have not. As much as I like that they have such an active community, every time I try to read the Yahoo group I die a little inside. Yahoo groups format terribly; I really wish they'd gone with a forum software (like this) rather than a newsgroup thing.

 

 

They do have a regular forum. http://ganeshagames.proboards.com/index.cgi?/ Hardly any one uses it though.

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So, this might be becoming less speculative. I've played a couple games of SoBaH with several of my usual gaming group members, and despite getting my arse roundly kicked each and every time (well, except the last; but that game was interrupted before he'd done more than kill one of my dudez) we all had a blast. There's been some interest shown in a possible campaign, but I'll have to keep flinging woo at them to be sure. I think sometime after March would be a good time for starting since two of us are Vampire Bones pledgers, both with add-ons, so that'll increase the armies available...

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