perjantai 9. kesäkuuta 2017

Basics For Beardlings


I'm happy to announce that ExtraBushyBeards will pump out a series of narrative tutorials for absolute beginners in Age of Sigmar, introducing different aspects of the game using short stories and lots of pictures. Here's what I had in mind:

Basics For Beardlings introduces the very basic rules of the game, from moving and shooting to charging and fighting. Also includes the use of Cover.

Units For Beardlings delves deeper into different units and model types as well as their roles on the battlefield. Introduces shooting and combat for whole units of warriors along with their Warscroll Abilities.

Heroes For Beardlings shows how heroes affect the flow of battle, casting spells and using abilities to help or hinder units on the battlefield.

Battles For Beardlings draws all the previous ones together, walking the reader through a small battle where each introduced aspect of the game is put into action and some basic tactics are discussed.

Perhaps later on I'll see about doing something similar for painting and such, but for now let us focus on the game.

This is Basics For Beardlings!

This is an aelven infantry model, a Spireguard
Here we can see his Warscroll, a list of characteristics and equipment the warrior owns. This particular model carries both a bow and a spear, making him equally good at long range and at close quarters. He also carries an Aelven Shield which boosts his defensive capabilities.
Thoriol strode boldly around a patch of forest, arriving at a small bridge that spanned across a wide chasm in his way. The aelf was smiling. Sun glared upon the realm from the heights of the sky, just powerful enough to melt some snow from the branches of the trees and make fat drops of clear water bombard the crust of snow below.

The day was beautiful and Thoriol knew his shift ended soon, his comrade would arrive and relieve him of today's guard duty just in time for him to attend the marketplace before returning to the barracks at Vaulspire. Although he preferred outdoor patrols amidst the ruins to standing guard by the door of some mage's chamber, the young aelf needed his weekly tour in the bustling market square of the nearby city to keep his sanity. All the exotic foods and items from all across the realms laid out before one's eyes were a sight like no other! Wines from the colonies at Bristling Mountains, shabby human fabrics from Ostfort, light-refracting lenses from the Collegiate Arcane, duardin steel from Karak Izor...

A sudden noise snapped Thoriol out of his thoughts. Wood crashing upon stone. His race's innately acute senses quickly traced the sound to the nearby ruins of an old house.

An orange-skinned beast was rummaging through some abandoned barrels and strongboxes inside, so intent on the task that it had not realized the presence of the aelf yet. This was not something too uncommon on patrols in this region, and Thoriol knew his duty required the elimination of the creature. This was no simple wild beast: it was a fearsome Savage Orruk!

This game begins with these two rival models 19" away from each other at the start of the 1st Battleround. Both models will play one turn during each Battleround, starting with the Spireguard in this example.
Thoriol checked his surroundings to see if there were any more of the creatures nearby. Judging he was alone with the one in the ruins, he set about completing the task.

As indicated by his Warscroll above, the aelf has a Move value of 6". This means he can be moved up to that distance in any direction without penalties to his other actions. The distance is measured from the nearest part of the model and no part of him may go beyond the set maximum of 6".
As the distance between the models was 19", the aelf decides to move only 3" as this takes him close enough to  use his Spireguard Bow (range 16"). Any distance in the game can be checked at any time, and the models are not required to use their Move up to the max.
The distance between the models is exactly 16", just within the maximum range of the aelf's missile weapon.

Grabbing the bow from his back, Thoriol took a couple of measured steps towards the ruins. He reached for an arrow from his quiver, nocking it to his bow's string without even having to look down. He'd done this hundreds of times.

The weapon profile for the Spireguard Bow is shown on the aelf's Warscroll. The bow makes 1 Attack, meaning the player rolls one D6 dice and tries to equal or beat the weapon's To Hit value (4+). The aelf rolls a 5, so the arrow has hit the enemy!
Next the aelf rolls the dice again, this time trying to equal or beat the weapon's To Wound value (also 4+). The roll is a 4, indicating that the shot now has a chance to inflict Damage!
The orruk has some protection against the shot, however. The creature's has a Save value of 5+, but as the ruins grant it the benefit of Cover, it may add 1 to its roll (meaning that even a roll of 4 is successful). The orruk rolls a 6, avoiding any damage.
Drawing his bow, Thoriol took careful aim at the orange form in the ruins. He was as good a shot as any in his cohort, but a moving target partially hidden behind a wall made it tricky. He loosed the arrow on his next exhale, sending the white shaft surge forth with nothing but a faint whistle from the goosefeather fletchings as the missile cut through the brisk winter air.

For a heartbeat Thoriol's keen eyes saw the arrow flying straight at the beast, set to strike right through the creature's throat. But alas, at the last possible moment the shaft struck the ruined wall, clattering harmlessly to the floor of the building. Thoriol grimaced. Now he had given away his presence and ruined the element of surprise!

This model is a Savage Orruk, an infantry model from the Bonesplitterz faction.
Savage Orruks also have a Warscroll to depict their skills and characteristics. These models can be assembled to use either Savage Stikkas (spears) or Chompas (axes), but they always carry around Bone Shields for extra protection. This particular model is armed with a Chompa and a Bone Shield. Although seeming less armoured than the aelf, you'll note that whereas the aelf's Wound value was 1, this orruk has 2 Wounds, meaning that it must suffer 2 Damage to be slain whereas the skinnier aelf can only take 1 Damage before dying.
Before the arrow on the floor even came to a halt, the orruk had spun around to scan its surroundings. Spotting the lonely aelf, the creature let out a wordless warcry in challenge to the one who would disturb its looting.

With the aelf having moved and shot, but still being too far away for a Charge move, it is now the orruks turn to act. He has a Move value of 5", but as he has no Missile Weapons to use and his adversary is quite far away the orruk decides to Run. If a model Runs, it may add D6" to its Move this turn but may not shoot or charge until its next turn. Running is a good way to close the distance between model faster, especially if they carry no ranged weapons
The orruk rolls a 3 and has now moved 5"+3"=8" towards his foe. Having run, the model may do nothing further this turn. As both players have played one turn, the 1st Battleround ends and the 2nd Battleround begins, starting with the aelf.
Waving its weapons wildly above its bald head, the orruk sprang into action. With terrifying speed it bounced over the tombs and cracks on the ground, eager to get to grips with his foe.

The aelf begins the 2nd Battleround by moving away from the orruk who has now ran closer. The aelf moves into the nearby forest to claim a Cover bonus for the inevitable close combat that's about to commence.
Standing safely by the forest's edge, the aelf checks the distance to the orruk for another shot from his bow.
Startled by the speedy reaction of the creature, Thoriol backed away into the forest behind him. Here he had the advantage of higher ground and he put some more paces in between him and his adversary, buying him more time to try another shot with his bow. He swiftly nocked an arrow and drew back the string. This one had to strike true.

The aelf rolls To Hit with his Missile Weapon (4+), scoring a 4 which is a hit.
With To Wound value of 4+, the 6 rolled next indicates the arrow causing a grievous injury
Once more the orruk may try its Save roll, but without the benefit of Cover he only succeeds on a roll of 5 or 6. He rolls a 2 and takes Damage equal to the Spireguard Bow's Damage value (1). Luckily the orruk has 2 Wounds as discussed earlier, meaning he may still continue to fight.
The white shaft whistled through the air, sinking deep into the orruk's muscled shoulder. The creature let out a howl of pain but did not slow its pace, seemingly ignoring the arrow protruding from its body as it kept running towards Thoriol.

With the aelf unwilling to declare a Charge and staying in the woods, it's the orruks turn to act again. It moves 5" towards the forest but does not Run.
Having moved and not carrying any Missile Weapons, the model now has a chance to declare a Charge. Charge is the only way to move within 3" of enemy models, and it can be declared by a model when there are enemies within 12" of it. The orruk rolls two D6 and compares the result to the distance between him and the enemy. A roll of equal to or greater than the distance is a successful Charge and the model may move that many inches towards the enemy. The orruk rolls a total of 8 and the distance is 6", so the Charge is successful.
The orruk is moved within ½" of the aelf and both models are now engaged in close combat.

With a cry of "Waaagh!" the orange-skinned creature lunged at Thoriol, covering the distance between them in a couple of over-enthusiastic leaps. This close the young guard could smell the foul breath of the beast and see his enemy's bulging muscles as it prepared for its first swing.

The Savage Orruk may strike first as it's currently his turn. First the orruk Piles In 3" towards the nearest enemy model, in this example the aelf. The weapon Range (1") for the Chompa is enough to reach the aelf and the weapon has 1 Attack which means one D6 is rolled. The To Hit value is 4+, so the roll of a 4 is a succesful hit.
The orruk proceeds rolling To Wound, having to beat the Chompa's value of 3+. Alas, he rolls a 2 and the attack sequence ends without inflicting any damage!
A stone axe came swinging his way in a downward arc, forcing Thoriol to take a backwards step to bring his spear up for a parry. The force behind the axe was greater than the aelf's speed, and the jagged blade slid across Thoriol's breastplate to scratch his spear-arm before he managed to dance away from the blow.

A quick glance at his arm reassured the young guard's mind despite the sight of his own blood. It was just a flesh wound!

Although it is currently the orruk's turn, the aelf may now strike back in close combat. He rolls a 5 which exceeds his Silverwood Spear's To Hit value of 4+ and is thus a successful hit.
A further roll also succeeds as the aelf scores a 4 against his spear's To Wound value of 4+. The orruk may now try to deflect the damage with its Save.
The Savage Orruk rolls a 1 for its Save roll (value 5+), suffers 1 Damage from the Silverwood Spear and is slain as it loses its last Wound. The Spireguard is victorious!
Having backed away from his enemy's swing, Thoriol now lunged forth with his spear in retaliation. The leaf-bladed tip deftly passed the orruk's flailing axe and slipped by the ramshackle bone shield to sink into the creature's neck!

As the beast fell on its knees, gurgling blood, the aelf yanked his spear free and gave the orruk a kick on the chest. For a moment the mortally wounded beast struggled on the cracked flagstones before finally succumbing to the loss of blood, laying perfectly still in a slowly expanding pool of its own gore.

Thoriol realized he had been holding his breath and took a few lungfuls of fresh air before checking the carcass for valuables. A single carved trinket on the orruk's ear seemed like it could be of some value, so the aelf removed it from the corpse before dragging it to the chasm and tossing the remains in.

Perhaps this trinket could earn Thoriol his day's lunch at the market?


Thank you for following through, I hope this was a worthwhile read for veterans and an insightful journey for complete beginners.

In the next "For Beardlings" -tutorial we'll take a look at how units work in Age of Sigmar. Until then!

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