Saturday, August 30, 2014

The Cult of the Old Ones - A company for In Her Majesty's Name

Here is the first in a sporadic series on the adventuring companies I use for In Her Majesty's Name.  I have been doing Victorian Science Fiction for years, and really appreciate the rules ability for me to craft companies of my own.  So without further ado...
Click on photo to enlarge

The Cult of the Old Ones
“Do what thou wilt,” sneered Alexander Crowley, “what a weak, vapid philosophy used by my brother to impress women and swindle money.  He does not know the meaning of true power…”

Alexander Crowley craves power, and his esoteric studies across the globe at Oxford, Miskatonic University, the South Pacific, and the dusty reaches of Central Asia have given him what believes to be the key.  With the knowledge he has and the powers he has gained, he just needs to retrieve a few more esoteric artifacts scattered around the world before he can fully open the door and let the Old Ones return from dimensions beyond time and space, to cleanse the world with madness. Ia, Ia!  Cthulhu Fhtagn! 

Alexander has gathered a cadre of degenerate and deranged acolytes over the course of his travels to assist him in his goal.  It is rumored that they undergo some sort of… change.  Most wear a respirator mask, the reason for this is unknown, but the few who have seen the uncovered faces after a battle are extremely unsettled.  The Cult of the Old Ones is well funded and well-armed with some of the latest weapons. It is unknown how Alexander acquired his wealth, but it is rumored that he purchases equipment using old doubloons and ancient gold coins of unknown origin…

Notes on figures:
This IHMN Company was inspired by Bob Murch’s Pulp Figures and can be built (almost) entirely with packs from his company.  Here are the codes, you can find them at www.pulpfigures.com.  (I am not affiliated with Pulp Figures in any way, just a fan)  There are many suitable figures across his various ranges, but these are from “Weird Menace.”  I know some are a little anachronistic for 1895, but I like my VSF a bit pulpy.  I strongly suggest you take a look, as many of the weird science stuff would work for IHMN as well as do double duty for pulp gaming.

• Crowley: PWM 01 (Weird Villains 1) – I personally use a cult leader I found in a box of Hellboy miniatures, but the Crimson Scorpion from this pack would be perfect, plus you get a few more interesting, menacing figures.  You could also use a figure from PWM 07 Cowled Cultists.
• Acolytes: PWM 08-09 (Gas Mask Cultists) – These two packs will give you guys with military rifles, a flame thrower, a machine gun, and a couple of WW1 Bergman sub-machine guns.  There are several other useful cultist packs, but most are armed with 1930’s style weapons like Thompsons.
• Lesser Old One: This guy I treat pretty much as a greater demon from HVF.  Unfortunately Mr. Murch does not have an appropriate figure, but there are many Cthulhu mythos inspired figures out there.  I use a repurposed Monsterpocolypse monster.

The Company List
Type
Pluck
FV
SV
Speed
Cost
Talents
Basic Equipment
Alexander Crowley
2+
+2
+1
0
64
Cloud Men’s Minds
Mesmerism
Mask of Terror (as Mask of Imhotep)
Staff (as quarterstaff)
Steel Chain shirt under robes
Lesser Old One
3+
+5
0
0
71
Terrifying
Tough
Icy Blast
Extra dimensional form (treat as SRC Breastplate for armor)
Acts as Greater Demon in rules
Acolyte
5+
+2
+2
0
16

Military Rifle
Lined Coat
Acolyte Flame Thrower
5+
+2
+2
0
23
Strongman
Lined Coat
Flamethrower
Acolyte Machine Gun Crew
5+
+2
+2
0
43
2 man crew
Lined Coat
Machine gun
Pistol (assistant)
  • Replace Acolyte Military Rifle with SMG (no cost)
    • SMG: +3 bonus, 12” Range, -0 pluck modifier, multiple targets, 9 points
  • Upgrade all Acolytes to Numb (+10 per figure)

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Battle of Bratwurst: 6mm Napoleonic Black Powder

I apologize for the lack of updates, it has been a busy summer, with gardening, camping, a cruise in July, and general family skulduggery.  As Mrs. Tin Man is a teacher, our summer's get pretty busy.

I did get the awesome print for Father's Day of General Gordon himself!  It hangs proudly in the game room. 

Last weekend, Tom was kind enough to drive up for my first game of Black Powder with my 6mm Napoleonic troops.  In short, I really enjoyed the rules and think it gave a fast, but good game.  Nothing illogical happened, and the command rolls added a nice level of tension.

We played on my new 3' x 4' table, at 1/3 scale, which worked pretty well.  Infantry battalions in line had a n 80mm frontage (with 32 figures), a single infantry move was 4" and musket range was 6".  We played down the long axis of the table, which was the equivalent of a 9' by 12' table at normal scale!
During game prep, Bear the wargaming kitty registers his disdain, I think he is a 28mm chauvinist...
 I kept the scenario fairly simple, Austrians versus French somewhere in Bavaria in 1809 during the initial Austrian invasion.  Tom took the Austrians and I took the French.  The Austrians were tasked with seizing the village of Bratwurst to open a path for follow on divisions.  The Austrian OOB was:

  • Avant Garde Brigade:
    • Two battalions of Grenzers (in skirmish order)
    • Two battalions of Light Cavalry (Hussars)
  • Two Infantry Brigades, each consisting of:
    • 4 x Line Battalions
    • 1 x Position Battery
All entered in column on Tom's end of the table.

Tom sets up as I prepare to feel the full fury of the Hapsburg's!
 The French had one Infantry Brigade in a blocking position in Bratwurst and surrounds, with another infantry brigade and a brigade of hussars reinforcing from my end of the table staring on turn 2.  The French OOB was:

  • 2 x Infantry Brigades
    • 3 x Battalions of Line Infantry
    • 1 x Battalion of Light Infantry (in skirmish order)
    • 1 x Foot Battery
  • 1 x Light Cavalry Brigade
    • 3 x Regiments of Hussars
Things started heating up on my left flank, as the Grenzers moved to assault the light battalion in the wood.  They would drive me out eventually, but at the loss of one of the Grenze battalions breaking.


 On my right / Austrian Left, I had left my artillery battery exposed, which Tom, nicely took advantage of and sent his Hussars charging in!  He needed 3+ to hit, and when he rolled his attack dice, he rolled all 3's...  Needless to say, my battery was wiped out.  Lesson learned, don;t leave artillery hanging out by itself, unsupported.
What are the chances? 1 in 46,656...
 Here you can see my reinforcements slowly streaming on to the table.  I flubbed several command rolls.  Another lesson learned, put your senior commander where you need him most.  I should have had him helping the reinforcements come up faster.  Also, you can see Tom's light cavalry coming around my right flank, where they will delay my reinforcement column. (You can also see the musket and artillery range sticks I made.)

 Here are his hussars hitting my reinforcements, causing my lead cavalry regiment to flee.  I did swing around and hit him in the flank, breaking one regiment, but...
 ... that delayed me long enough that he was able to overrun my forward brigade in heavy fighting.

 Here is what the end of the battle looked like.  Tom had taken his objective with minimal losses, while I had seen my forward brigade mauled and my reinforcements barely getting engaged.  We called it at this point as an Austrian win, I really hope the Emperor gets here soon...
I greatly enjoyed the rules and I think Tom did as well.  We came to a decision in 3 hours of play, and that includes stopping to look up rules, snack breaks, etc.

Thanks Tom for a great game, and I cannot wait for a rematch!