|Half-Orc Chief and Beserker|
The biggest source of figures I have is GW's 'Lord of the Rings' line. Many years ago I subscribed to the part-work that accompanied their original release, and so have a pile of sprues and unpainted metal personality figures. I even have a handful of figures that I managed to paint before the allure of the game wore off. This line provided my first warband - Half-Orcs:
Ok, they're Uruk Hai. But let's not go all official shall we? For this game they're Half-Orcs.
The warband is as follows:
Chief - Q3, C4, Leader - 70pts
Beserker - Q3, C4, Fearless, Savage - 52pts
3 x Warriors - Q3, C3 - 30pts
2 x Crossbows - Q3, C2, Shooter: Medium - 28pts
I already had the warriors and crossbows painted, and did the chief and beserker last night; a black undercoat and some swift dry-brushing saw to it in no time at all.
(The bases are very basic and I will do them all up properly at some stage.)
Whilst I have other LotR factions to fight them with, I thought something different would provide a better looking game. Tucked away in a box I found a handful of plastic Skaven my son painted some ten years ago. They were pretty much of the quality you'd expect when you let a child of six loose with paints and a brush - the colours were OK (I suspect there was a lot of paternal advice), but some of the painting wasn't entirely 'between the lines'. Not to worry - I patched up the worst of the missed bits with some brown paint, then ran a dark brown wash over the figures. A little drybrushing on the metallic areas, and the figures were good enough to put on the table. I found a metal Skaven personality I'd bought and never painted it, and spent 20 minutes getting him 'table-ready' as a suitable leader, then added in some GW giant rats I painted 25 years ago for use in a Victorian Horror role-playing game we played at that time.
And so I ended up with this:
Clan Chief - Q3, C3, Leader, Tailslap - 66pts
7 x Warriors - Q4, C3, Gregarious - 27pts
3 x Rats - Q4, C2, Animal, Gregarious - 15pts
And so to the game. This was the setup:
Basically it was a couple of areas of ruins. The Rats are on the left, and the Half-Orcs on the right.
Here you can see the Half-Orcs advancing, their commander leading from the rear:
The Rats show what it means to be gregarious:
The two forces quickly closed:
The beserker went it alone, but was quickly surrounded and overwhelmed:
The Rats followed up this success by rushing the Half-Orc's chief, and killing him too:
The morale tests saw the Half-Orc force break up, with a couple fleeing the table.
Meanwhile in the ruins, the giant rats were fighting a couple of Half-Orcs:
The gruesome death of one of the rats saw a general rout, however, leaving one giant rat to face both Half-Orcs.
Back in the main battle the beleaguered Half-Orcs formed up for a last stand:
It didn't last long. In the ruins the last giant rat killed a Half-Orc, forcing them to another morale test for 50% losses:
The resulting tests saw two Half-Orcs cut down attempting to flee from close combat. With only two Half-Orc figures left, I drew the game to a close.
The early loss of the beserker and the leader really saw the downfall of the Half-Orcs; whilst individually slightly better than their rodent foes, the fact that the Rats could activate as groups right until the end of the battle gave them a real edge, especially with the Gregarious ability.
A couple of things I wasn't sure about. Firstly if a figure fails a morale test whilst in close combat I assumed that their opponent got a free-hack. If that resulted in a knockdown, I ruled that the figure was killed. In other words, the morale test forces a break-off, followed by a free-hack. Once the free-hack was resolved I then resolved the flee based on the figure's post-combat position. In addition, I assumed that a figure that was prone was automatically killed if hit by shooting; the rules just say 'combat', and aren't entirely clear on the matter.