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"Fetch Us a Brew Love"

A Flintloque Scenario by Gavin Syme

blackehorde0

Some Blacke Horde infantry are trying to steal crates of tea for their Orcish allies while the Finklesteiners and Burrovians give them some sport with the hot end of a musket for their troubles.

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Black on black, a row of black boots on the bottoms of black legs marched quickly towards the little cluster of buildings that made up Krapenstagger. This deep in the Confederation of Finklestein the fear of discovery was constant and would mean a disastrous end to a mission deemed critical to the future of the Blacke Horde itself. The mission was to intercept a cargo hauling boat that was bringing in chests of Tea to the forces of the Ferach Empire. Tea, while vile to Dwarven tastes, is adored by the Orcs of Albion who will drink the stuff boiling hot until it comes out of their ears. Securing these chests and offering them as a gift would ensure the fairest of treatment by the Orcs as they served in the Grand Alliance.

Getting into the immediate vicinity of the hamlet was not hard. Travelling by night and with weapons muffled the Brewswickers skirted the river and followed it to Krapenstagger just as the sun rose. The boat was there, beached up, with more than a dozen Dwarves busily unloading the precious chests out of the hold. Captain Faustwursel who led this element of the Blacke Horde was pleased to see the second part of his careful plan had come about without problems too. He could see three empty wagons parked at the well. Wagons of the Brewswick Commissariat in disguise. The pummilig pigs who task it was to pull the wagons were drinking from wooden buckets. With the wagons in position the plan was to storm the boat, drive off the locals, load the wagons and then get out of Krappenstagger before they were noticed.

Taking the wrapping from their muskets the Brewswickers advanced at a trot into the hamlet and got to within a couple of hundred feet of the boat before they were seen. Faustwursel nodded to the waggoner's as he passed them and then shouted to give them a minute or so to clear the boat and then follow. As it turned out the locals fled as soon as they soldiers came near them. They fled so well and in such a manner as to give the Captain pause. Were they expected? Did the Confederation know the Horde was coming to Krapenstagger?

The Captain had left a couple of pickets watching their backs as the Dwarves began investigating the boat and almost as soon as the first Brewswicker had climbed aboard he heard a single shot ring out. That could only mean enemy close by and that their presence was already known to that enemy. Signalling to half his section he had them follow him out, at a dead run, to the pickets who pointed out a large force of Confederation Dwarf and also Burrovian soldiers advancing upon Krappenstagger.

Faustwursel swore long and hard and he knew he has to make a choice. Risk some or all, delay or run. He would have the tea chests and that meant a short and vicious fight. Leaving instructions for the Dwarves around him to delay the Confederation advance and then to fall back he then ran back to the boat. Looking around the remaining Dwarves the officer now had a look of determination on his face.

Dividing his troops was a risk, they would be outnumbered, but the tea was the only priority. Time to get it and get out. Tea chests were heaped on the dry grass and with screeching axles the wagons of the Brewswicker Commissariat approached them at a leisurely pace. Gritting his teeth and avoiding the urge to scream at the civilian drivers to hurry up the officer ordered his troops to begin arranging the heavy wooden chests so that they could be loaded onto the approaching wagons. Dragging and puffing the Dwarves did the best they could and they heard the distant discharges of first their own muskets from fellow Brewswickers and then the whip crack of enemy rifles.

The encroaching din of conflict certainly got the attention of the waggoner's and their pace quickened as they thought of their own hides being filled with holes. This at least made the Black Horde soldiers smile as they sweated with the chests; fear is a real motivator.

Captain Faustwursel felt his temper lessen and decided now was the time to order the retreat.

'Otto, Hanz. You two take ze first chest unt make zer retreat. Ve will hold zen off while der wagons finish with the loading unt zen we also vil follow you.'

With a creak and groan of wood under protesting pressure the chest came away from the grass and the two Dwarves made their way as quickly out of Krapenstagger. Grunting with the excretion the pair made the best pace they could as the snap and crackle of musketry intensified behind them.

Scenario Forces

This is a scenario nominally for two players; though it can be played solo and with three players too. The first player takes the part of the Blacke Horde while the second player takes the role of the Burrovians and their Finklestein allies. The Blacke Horde are intent on stealing tea chests from the Finklestein depot at Krapenstagger while the Ferach Empire forces want to prevent them.

1st Blacke Horde Line (Grand Alliance)
Use the 5028 Bier & Bones book to generate a section of twenty Dwarves. They must be Brewswickers as per the book. There are two Veteran characters, determine the other experience levels as normal. All are Troop Type Regular and are armed with Dwarf Musket MkII with officers and sergeants etc armed as per the book description. Allocate Skills / Traits /Flaws as per the generic and Brewswick pages. There is no points limitation but limitations as set here and by the rules in Flintloque.

12eme Burrovian Jagers (Ferach Empire)
Use the 5028 Bier & Bones book to generate a section of eight Little Rabbits. They must be Burrovians as per the book. Determine the experience levels as normal. All are Troop Type Light Troop and are armed with Dwarf Jager Rifles with officers and sergeants etc armed as per the book description. Allocate Skills / Traits /Flaws as per the generic and Burrovia pages. If you wish you may replace the Section Leader of this section with the famous officer Major Blucky O'Hare (use rules as per his statistics) though if you do you must reduce the section size to five including O'Hare. There is no points limitation but limitations as set here and by the rules in Flintloque.

3rd Hollerzalten Landwehr (Ferach Empire)
Use the 5028 Bier & Bones book to generate a section of twenty Dwarves. They must be Confederation of Finklestein (Hollerzalten) as per the book. Determine experience levels as normal. All are Troop Type Militia and are armed with Dwarf Musket MkI with officers and sergeants etc armed as per the book description of Legion de Nain line. Allocate Skills / Traits /Flaws as per the generic and Confederation pages. There is no points limitation but limitations as set here and by the rules in Flintloque.

BluckyOHare 300dpi

Scenario Map and Set Up

You will need a standard playing area of six foot by four feet for this scenario along with terrain as outlined here. Lay out the playing area as per the instructions and add the forces as per the set up areas having your section rosters, dice and measuring tape and so forth ready to use.

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The playing area is generally flat with the river on the western edge and on the river bank the tethered up cargo hauling boat which is filled with tea chests. There are a few small stone buildings and a well towards the centre of the playing area. Scattered bushes and trees cover the area and the three wagons that belong to the Brewswickers are placed within 10cm of the well. A dirt road runs down the side of the river and this completes the terrain for the game.

The Ferach Empire forces begin with both their sections on the eastern edge of the playing area within 5cm of the edge and with each section member within 5 cm of each other. The two sections may be any distance apart along the table edge. The Grand Alliance forces begin within 10cm of each other and 10cm of the boat carrying the tea chests. See special rules for the wagons and tea in play.

Scenario Objectives and Game Length

This scenario has no limit in terms of length by number of elapsed turns. The game continues until the victory objectives of one side are met or play can no longer continue due to casualties on both sides. At the end of a turn in which a victory condition is met cease play and announce the winner of the scenario. Here are the objectives for both sides in the scenario:

The Grand Alliance

The Orcs of Albion have been most kind to the Blacke Horde and though you cannot make sense of it in your Bier drinking mind the Orcs love the taste of tea from Injia and Chinnie. These mysterious places are hard to get to and as a result the cost of tea is very prohibitive to the serious tippler. Rumours have come from the war torn Confederation barony of Krapenstagger that a small ship carrying a hundred chests of tea has quietly made port at a remote site on the Weaselgeize river. A company of the Blacke Horde has been sent at rapid march into Krapenstagger to steal as much of this tea as they can so it can be then sent on to Wheeling-Turn in Catalucia. A major coup for the Horde as it would greatly raise their standing in the eyes of the Iron Duke.

Objectives for the Blacke Horde are to kill the tea ship's crew (already done before play begins), to capture several wagons (also already done before play begins) and then to get twelve chests of tea off the ship and then out of the immediate area. If your section manages to get twelve chests of tea off the southern edge of the playing area either on foot or by wagon it is a major victory. If your section manages eight chests then it is a minor victory. Survival of your section is secondary to all other objectives.

The Ferach Empire

Count Aldo Hollerzalten is not a Dwarf possessed by patience or actually many other virtues but he does get a tingle in the beard when his own personal advancement is in question. Lies, blackmail and even more nasty methods have secured for the Count a small ship laden with tea which he intends to unload at Krapenstagger and then transport to the Burrovian border. Once in Burrovia the Hareian population will pay handsomely for it and Mordred will be pleased at the certain reduction in mutinous mutterings in the lands of the Rabbits. Self advancement assured! Its a pity though that news has just reached the officer of the 3rd Hollerzalten Landwehr that the cursed Blacke Horde are trying to steal the tea. Those Burrovian Jagers that insisted on tagging along might prove useful after all. Kill those traitors to Dwarf kin everywhere!

Objectives for the servants of Count Aldo Hollerzalten are to prevent the tea chests being stolen from the ship and taken off the southern edge of the playing area. If fewer than eight chests are removed from the table its a major victory, if less than twelve chests are removed its a minor victory. Of course if you kill all of the Blacke Horde beggars then all the better. Losses to your forces will not fuss the Count.

Special Rules for this Scenario

Here are the special rules for this specific scenario. In all cases these listed rules supersede any conflicting mechanics in the Flintloque 3rd edition rules.

Tea Chests: Each Tea Chest should be represented in the game by a token or a chest like miniature. They are rather heavy and it takes two characters to lift one and move with it. With both carrying it all three move as one entity at a rate of Slow March in a chosen direction regardless of wounds. If any action such as firing or reloading or melee is undertaken then movement is not allowed that turn. When the game begins there are 1D10+10 Tea Chests scattered randomly within 20cm of the beached boat. No more than three may be touching each other and they may not be stacked.

The Pig Pulled Wagons: There are three wagons each pulled by four pummilig pigs in the game area when play begins. They are around the well when the enemy appears and are empty having just finished getting the notoriously bad tempered pigs a drink of water. They act ON THEIR OWN during play though the Grand Alliance player will carry out their actions if no umpire is present. Wagons are activated one after the other at the start of the turn before any other sections. Each one moves 20cm per activation firstly towards the beached boat where it will stop and wait. It stops within 5cm of the first two Tea Chests it reaches but no two Wagons will stop within 10cm of each other. It takes two characters one action to lift a chest within 5cm of a wagon and load it on to the wagon. Once a wagon has two chests onboard it will move off again at 15cm per turn towards the southern edge of the playing area. They will, if possible, stay within 10cm of the river edge and follow it. Turning a wagon costs 2cm of movement per 45 degrees rotated.

Wagons have four pigs pulling them and two unarmed Dwarf (Average / Civilian) drivers. They will make no effort to fight and will only defend themselves in melee. They may be attacked as normal and for each pig killed the speed of the wagon drops by 25% rounding down. If both drivers are killed then the wagon will keep heading in the direction it is facing and may not be commandeered by a player. Use your collection of miniatures or tokens for the wagons.

The Beached Boat: Pulled up on the banking of the fast running river this ocean going trading ship has seen its uneventful voyage spoiled by the Blacke Horde who ambushed the crew and forced them to flee. Now the precious tea in the chests from her hold are scattered about the boat and on the ground. The ship plays little direct part in the action but should be represented by a model of approximately 30cm length with its bow 5-7cm on to the land with the rest in the river as per the map. Any characters spending one turn on the ship can pick up and carry a Tea Chest.

Swimming in the River: Not advised for the waters of the river at Krapenstagger are fast flowing and any character who falls in will be pulled under and drowned unless they roll a D10 each turn and get an even result (2,4,6,8,10). They will travel 10cm per turn while in the water and may move 1D10x1 cm away from or towards shore if they do not drown per turn.

The Well: In the little port hamlet of Krapenstagger the well of the seven bearded sisters is respected and avoided. A local legend tells of a time when a young Dwarf dropped a bag of Magicke dust down the well and then to get it back he enlisted the help of seven bearded sisters who braided their chin hair and allowed him to climb down it into the well. Once at the bottom he foolishly remarked that none of the sisters would make a good wife as their beards were weak like a child’s. Angered the sisters slashed through the braid and doomed the Dwarf to a death by starvation in the well. All this time later the Wylde Magicke dust has bonded with the bones of the Dwarf and if any character (not Wagons) comes within 30cm of the well roll 1D10 and on a result of 1 the character gainst a +1 to Steady for the rest of the game, on a result of 2 they suffer a -1 to Steady and on a result of 3 they cry inconsolably and lost their activation in the next turn. Make only one roll for a character per game.

Expanding the Scenario

This scenario can be expanded if you wish to bulk up the action. For the Blacke Horde you could try adding a small cannon with crew along with a fourth wagon and a requirement for 50% more Tea Chests to be removed from the playing area. If this is the case then the short soldiers of Count Aldo Hollerzalten should get a third section. This section should be Hollerzalten Uhlans, five light cavalry with lances. This makes the game larger but keep in mind you will need more miniatures and a copy of Grapeshotte 3rd edition for artillery rules.

Solo Playing the Scenario

This scenario can be played solo with the player taking either side in the action. If the player takes the part of the Blacke Horde then the Ferach Empire forces will be played as per the solo rules with the attitude 'Aggressive' and the prime aim of shooting any enemy in possession of a Tea Chest first. If the player takes the part of Hollerzalten then the Grand Alliance force will play 'Defensive' with a priority of moving Tea Chests with the nearest fifty percent of the force to the chests off the gaming area by travelling along the edge of the river.

Scenario Requirements

In order to use this scenario you will need some normal wargame equipment such as a playing area, terrain, dice and miniatures along with rosters, tokens and so on. In more precise terms the central needs for the scenario once the playing area is set up are as follows:

5028 Flintloque 3rd Edition - Bier & Bones
This game book contains all needed rules and army materials along with background for this theatre of the Mordredian Wars.

52515-U Blacke Horde Line (20 Brewswick Dwarves)
52504-U Dwarf Landwher ( 20 Hollerzalten Landwher)
58506-U Burrovian Jagers (Burrovian Light Infantry)
LE044 Major Blucky O'Hare (Character Officer)

These miniatures provide all the characters needed for playing the scenario and of course they can be almost endlessly re-used for other adventures with many players already possessing sets such as the 52504 Dwarf Landwher. The Blacke Horde Line force will provide a core to expand upon if you wish to try, for example, another scenario featuring the same troops continuing their escape with the stolen Tea Chests.

All the above miniatures are available now from Alternative Armies webstore.

Designers Comments

The original idea for this scenario actually came from a television advert for a famous British brand of tea bags and the origin tale for the Dutchy of Brewswick in the Bier & Bones Flintloque book. Expanding from a single leaf to a whole pot of boiling tea the scenario formed up about the idea of would it be possible to steal an awful lot of tea while an enemy advanced upon you. Making it more complex were a group of irate and slow waggoner’s who would carry the chests of tea but would toddle and crawl along instead of making best speed. These wagons were replaced in the final version with the automatic action mechanics as described but in the testing version they were played by an umpire who made them randomly and mildly mutinous upon a whim. As for the Well of the Seven Bearded Sisters, well that came from a little joke during testing about lovely Dwarven ladies and how crossing them was a bad idea!

When playing this scenario its hard to judge just what will happen as so much depends on wagons, carrying and making the trade off between preparing a defence or making a dash for it. As the Blacke Horde I opted for a fighting retreat with the wagons and made a point of not allowing the foe to get near the wagons or the quarter of the section carrying additional chests. I also kept close to the river and did not allow the Hollerzalten Dwarves to get ahead of me. Another method used was to hold the line at the beached boat and loose some volleys into the enemy as they closed in. This worked fairly well but if your shooting is not so good and the wagons are attacked...

All in all this a fun scenario that takes about two hours to play in total. We would be pleased to hear how you get on with it and all feedback is welcome too.

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Webmaster's Notes

This article was originaly published on Alternative Armies' content portal, Barking Irons, and is reproduced here with permission.

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