Saturday, 28 October 2017

SHADOWS OVER HAMMERHAL - THE JOURNEY - part 3



Sunday 23rd July
No session today but i did finish off the Cogsmith


I wonder how he's supposed to go for a shit in that outfit?? I imagine him very clunky in his approach to everything. Smashing into doors and wondering why the hell he chose that novelty backpack!

Saturday 5th August
week off work so can see me getting a few things done on the game and maybe some more sessions to.
today we started on session 4 of which took us down to the 3rd level of the dungeon.
we had just gained our first level of experience, meaning now we could all have 2 skill cards instead of 1.

The one thing we noticed here is that there were a few surprises in store for us and we got to see a little more scope of what the GM can do. carefully wording some of the descriptions can be misleading or not. its down to the GM how they wish to weave the tale. a raise of an eyebrow or careful emphasis on certain words can lead more towards the mystery and help build up some tension when choosing your paths and adventuring further into the dungeon.
My wife has has only ever been 'the bad guy' in our most recent run through of Descent. so even herself would say that she is not an experienced GM. but she is really coming into her own and enjoying the experience with this game.

Additionally we were hit by a rather interesting room. up until this point the Cogsmith hadn't ever really come into his own. a couple of grudge rakings and discovering how inconsistent of a weapon it can be.. but also potentially lethal and here is where we saw the lethal damage it could do.
we were faced by a total of 10 enemies that caught us off guard. we werent expecting it.

firstly my Lord Castellant moved in picking up only his second kill. on this level.
next up the Fleetmaster shifting in picking off another.
the loremaster as usual fleeted in picking off the champion. and dropping a treasure found earlier that would prevent enemies from moving into adjacent squares to the loremaster.

we aren't sure if we played this right or not. but we took it as any adversary has to move into a square to pass through it. so based on this.. it essentially blocked the remaining 7 bad guys into a corner only able to attack the fleetmaster. onto the adversary phase. because they were blocked in they only managed to get 1 hit on the fleetmaster and the bottleneck here meant they could not do anything else.. as i say we may of read the ruling incorrectly here but if we didn't. it was obviously a very shrewd move to create the bottle neck.

at this point is where the Cogsmith literally tore the rest to shreds. rolling 3 sixes meaning that he would have 3 chances to let rip on the unsuspecting fools!
and exactly that happened. the Cogsmith took down all 7 with those 3 sixes and still had a dice left.

after about 3 hours we had explored all of this level, uncovering 2 stairwells, fighting some more bad guys and another Indiana Jones style room and finding another stairwell. this is where we decided it was time to head back up to the city.

this time a grand fair was on which meant we could only visit a few locations.
the Castellant picked up a new treasure from the house of Venargo and cashed in remaining gold for 2 more renown
as did the cogsmith.
the loremaster headed over to the guild of thumaturgists and picked up another treasure.
and the fleetmaster just cashed in his paltry 1 gold for another renown.

so that was our session. taking another 3 hours so that's 3 levels cleared. 9 hours played. seemingly quashing my earlier estimation that it would only take 8 hours to get through the game

what did we learn this time?


  • scope of what the GM can do. i can see some real good story telling from this at some point. as we get further on in our quest the story evolves. and cant wait for future expansions or player made quests that build upon this some more.

  • behaviour rolls - we haven't really seen anything good from these just yet. out of nine hours played every behaviour roll has pretty much been..move and attack nearest hero. so the toss up between choosing the behaviour roll or not hasnt really yielded too much in favour of the GM apart from a roll where you can spawn a pink horror or D3 acolytes.

  • we also noticed on this level that it needs a component from silver tower. now whilst i have silver tower and this wasn't a problem. as a standalone expansion...its wrong to assume everyone had already bought silver tower. regardless it was only a blue portal. and we didn't have silver tower at hand, so we just used a standard doorway.

  • Indiana Jones!! - so we experienced our second Indiana Jones style 'grab the treasure' room. this time with a pit which you must get over as quick as possible before the treasure is gone. its a smash and grab scenario which could go either way. get the loot or suffer high damage.

  • ambushes - we got lucky on this level. only 1 ambush compared to the uncountable amount from the previous session. this level is a pretty big one too. so if we had of gotten more ambushes this could easily of been a 5 hour session.

  • Lord Castellant - still struggling to find his groove. I've also had a run of bad luck with him. i get 6s when there isn't many people around so i cant hit the full potential of his lantern and i think this is costing him on the renown wheel massively. whilst everyone has gone around 3 or 4 times. he is still on his second cycle.

  • Grudge Raker - with the right rolls this could take out a small army.


we really really enjoyed this session. it had plenty of action. plenty of kills thrills and the odd spill. the exploration of this level felt great and we all came out at the end wanting to play again. but alas tis late! so onto another day.

Tuesday 8th August

OK so today was a little something different. we are enjoying the game but are still a little concerned that because we are enjoying this game so much that by the time we finish we will most likely want more. yesterday i spent the entire day scanning the tiles and re scaling down to a A4 sheet style as well as creating a nice layout page with with a similar design and layout to that of the Hammerhal quest book. why? of course it's so I and others can make their own quests of course!


Thursday 10th August
we went to Warhammer World and i picked up some plague bearers from a rather disgruntled employee who huffed and grunted because i didn't buy more or any 40k stuff! but regardless ive added my first exotic adversaries!

Saturday 16th September
We have had a long break since the last session. but work has been immensely taxing and most of my spare time has been taken up by even more work or recuperating. luckily there was no ambushes waiting for me in that time.
i have completed the Fleetmaster


I have also done quiet a bit of painting on other projects and such within this time. getting a lot of paint work done on the castellant 80% complete. and the kairic acolytes.

but tonight we picked up  further plodding into the dungeon. as we moved down to the next level.
tonight was most definitely NOT our night. not even the freshly painted Fleetmaster or the nearly done Castellant could do anything to improve the luck here.

first turn we searched and found nothing, we are in a corridor with 3 exits.
firstly we get hit by an ambush which was evaded with the use of a treasure card.
next up the Cogsmith popped one of the doors open which forced us to miss the rest of the turn, waiting for us in this room were 2 Blightkings. the clumsy Cogsmith had gotten his novelty backpack wedged into the door frame and was easily taken out by the viscous Blightkings.
with the position being very much in the Blightkings favour the heroes decide to back off in an attempt to gain a tactical advantage.

another treasure card was used to bring the Cogsmith back into play but the bad luck struck again! an unexpected event bringing in 3 more Blightkings at the heroes rear.
completely penned in with a weakened team. the next hour was a complete slog where the heroes once more lost the Cogsmith and the Fleetmaster. spending lots of the gathered treasures thus far to finally see off the 5 Blightkings. this entire fight was our nights session. surrounded. stuck out of position in a tightly packed corridor. there wasn't enough room for any of the heroes to get into their best positions in order to try to pick off the Blightkings. the Cogsmith was pinned pretty much all of the time and never once got chance to pick up his guns. the Fleetmaster had very little chance to do anything only picking off a few wounds, which is ultimately why these guys had to take a fall.

as ALL of the blightkings were on the board they were getting all of the bonuses they gather from having all types available.whichmade them lethal. i think if the heroes had of been better positioned they might of fared better. but regardless they survived and made rather sharpish escape from the dungeon. walking away with only 5 renown picked up all by the Castellant and the Loremaster
1 treasure card and 2 gold.

the heroes were shaken so the city was their only escape.

along with this slugfest we had spent over an hour and half only uncovering 2 chambers. and most of that time was spent fighting. frustrations were high from this one never ever really finding any groove and had to simply grind our way to safety.

when up in the city a drunkard mistakes the Castellant again for another hero - this granted D3 renown. taking him up-to only needed one more to hit his 2nd skill, which is lucky because his kill count is the lowest in the team.

with the heroes only have 2 gold between them they decided to cash in for renown. again bad luck struck once again for both heroes trying to scrape some extra renown from a pretty poor venture and my Castellant was unable to get that much needed 2nd skill card.

so we wrapped up for the night all feeling rather disgruntled.
  • my daughter who is controlling both the Cogsmith and the Fleetmaster was in a particular bad mood at not really having much chance to do anything with the Cogmaster. because of the cramped conditions and being pinned into a corridor from each side he was never once able to hit his peak. his axe is very much a substitute with the dwarf. and with the quite poor damage and hard to hit was only able to deal about 2 or 3 wounds the entire mission. 
  • Fleetmaster also struggled with his fierce attacking skills being nerfed by bad luck and being surrounded. he can deal damage. but isn't great at taking it. this guy is the one that has fallen the most upto this point, relying heavily on the other heroes finishing the job. however as earlier described this guy is the poacher of the team. and quite often sweeps in and finishes off the badguys when the other guys have dealt the first blows.
  • Blightkings made it hard for us to take out the kings that were buffing the others. constantly getting healed and having extra move allowed them to pin the heroes down quicker. this made the entire venture very very tough. if you come face to face with all 5 of these beasties make sure you take down the dude with the bell and the dude with the standard as you will suffer from the buffs given by these guys.
  • oddly this time it was my Castellant that shone taking out the majority of the Blightkings between himself and the 'Loremistress' :) maybe everyone else having bad luck can pay off when you are shielded by 400 pounds of gold armour :)
so that was us on the 4th level of the dungeon. and didn't even manage to scrape the surface of this level. only 3 rooms revealed chalking up our playing time thus far to 12 hours ish

part 4 will take a little longer as i have pretty much caught upto where we are at now and i am also pretty steamed with work. having a ruck load of acolytes to finish and the castellant has been sitting around for a long time unfinished. but will have a new part coming up pretty soon.