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Thread: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

  1. #41
    Chapter Master kublai's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Very cool warband sigur ! I have to admit that I'm not a big fan of the plastic GB figures. You made them really look beautiful though. Gorgeous work.

  2. #42

    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Now that's a barbarian horde! Those shields really look good.

  3. #43
    Chapter Master Whitwort Stormbringer's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Wow, can't believe how quickly you finished those up - they look great.

    Quote Originally Posted by sigur View Post
    I thought of running these as 12 warriors, 4 warriors to go with the warlord ... A.) is this possible or does the warlord have to run around on his own?
    Having just picked up the rules and read them, my understanding is that no, the warlord has to remain on his own, however his special rules "We Obey" and "Side by Side" allow a nearby unit to join him for a single activation, or something to that effect? I'd have to re-read that section to be certain of how it works (pp. 37-38).

    I've also been watching the "how to play SAGA" videos by RubbishInRubbishOut on youtube, which I found to be pretty informative: link

    Tell us how your first set of games goes!
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  4. #44
    Chapter Master sigur's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    @mrtn: Thanks.

    @zoggin-eck: Cheers. Nigel Stillman's bretonnian army in WD around 1996 had similar slashes on the shields (but I guess I'm reaching now ). Seen some of them done on DE armies too but yeah, it's not too common. Chaos Marauders got that partly sculpted onto their shields though.

    @athelstan: Good point. Thanks for the introduction too. 't was a fun game. It's also good to have an eyewitness account that those shields do look rather normal in real life.

    @Caiphas Cain: Well, they were basecoated for the most part already, bases were drybrushed too. They only needed the clothes painted, details, highlights, a wash here and there and so on.

    @kublai: Thanks, I found them to be pretty neat minis. Details are nice, plastic quality is okay, a few build options and a lot of bang for your buck. I likey. The lack of bases was a bit disconcerting and I had to rummage deep into old boxes to find enough round bases to fit these guys on.

    @Corvussanctus: Cheers! I almost find it a bit sad how the shields cover up everything to the front.

    @Whitwort Stormbringer: Yeah, I've got to re-read how exactly the warlord works in conjunction with the unit he's with and in how far seperate combats taking place work in regards to the warlord being with a unit. Thanks for the link, that should help indeed.



    Okay, first game done! 2on2, Vikings versus Anglo-Danes. Due to the fact that I didn't have enough models done to "make" Anglo-Saxons "work" (because many of their abilities are based on having at least 10 guys per unit) my warlord decided that it's the "Anglo-" part that matters and the second half is just decoration and might just as well be Danish. With no need for bigger units, I went for: Warlord, 2x 4 hearthguard, 2x 8 warriors.

    First we took some time to explain the rules (the other guys had played a few times already, I've never had the rulebook in my hands before), then the setup:


    My guys are the ones in front of the green hill.



    Here's a closer shot of the evil viking horde:



    Shortly after that, people started running and shouting and holding pointy things towards each other:




    Out of a collection of really bad pictures, this might be the worst. Only trees in focus BUT at least a sense of artistry by use of the always-clever dutch angle.

    On our right flank the Anglo-Danes advanced, Vikings advanced in all kinds of directions, in the end the Anglo-Danish warlord got into a bit of a trouble but that would have been remedied quickly.

    On the left flank the vikings charged, my guys mostly stood around, trying to avoid the invitable at first because naturally for the first few turns I didn't know what the heck I was doing, so my Anglos were ordered to Brace for Impact.



    In the end a bunch of bearded guys ran into each other, the biggest viking with the reddest beard fell over and we called it a night.


    Interesting game, that saga. I'm really interested how it compares to LotR. The battle boards indeed are innovative, all the other dice rolling is kept simple but works. It's clear now how so many people use the Saga system with custom battle boards for all kinds of games and periods. As it has been said so many times before, it's a clever game and I'm sure it gets much more interesting when played with scenarios. So far I'm a bit surprised by the lack of many things like formations of any kind (units basically work as they do in 40k) or any sort of bonus attackers get for charging one unit with several units at once. The two combats are done one after another and are completely seperate. However, units get a fatigue marker for each combat they fight, nomatter wether they win or lose so maybe that comes in as a factor to handle that.

    Seems like a nice game for pushing vikings and similar models across the table. Or Dark Elves. Or Aliens. Funny, I think if this was a fantasy-based game I think I would celebrate this possibiilty to adapt the game to basically any setting but as it's a historical thing it kind of irks me a little. But no, it's a fun game and I only got a glimpse of the whole thing so far. We didn't have any missile troops, any cavalry and, as mentioned above, no scenario. So I'm sure that these things will add some "meat" to the game. Basically, it's all about those battle boards and how you use those dice. It seems to be about reading the situation, the possibilities and using the resources you have (symbols on the dice) for the right things at the right time. Oh, and it's important to know your battleboard and preferrably your opponent's too. I think it's almost a resource allocation game in that way with miniatures depicting the state of affairs.

  5. #45
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Think......larger.....two or three hundred minies charging across a larger table. A full size battle. ALL those great looking minies You KNOW you want to. Go for it.
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  6. #46
    Chapter Master Caiphas Cain's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Well, for this period, small "armies" makes sense. Historically, local lords didn't have very many fighting men available.

    A two hundred strong shieldwall per side would be awesome though. You should look into that, sigur. The table seems a little light on terrain, is that a normal amount for a game of Saga?
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  7. #47

    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Quote Originally Posted by sigur View Post
    @Corvussanctus: Cheers! I almost find it a bit sad how the shields cover up everything to the front.


    How can you say that, and then post a picture like that?

    I think the shields help to add a lot of character to the units where every man looks very similar, and who cares about a chainmail-belly?

  8. #48
    Chapter Master sigur's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    @Crazy Harborc: Sounds cool, yeah. Armies were really small though at that time. IIRC, there are some sources saying that the official number of men when somebody was talking about "army" was around 32.

    @Caiphas Cain: Thanks, the terrain is alright I think. It doesn't do too much anyway apart from slowing down movement on both sides. Houses or settlements could play a bigger role though.

    @Corvussanctus: Hehe, well, I said that the shields covered up much to the front which I guess is what they're supposed to do. But I guess you're right, the models still work. Also - not only chainmailbellies but also colourful shirts! ;P

  9. #49
    Modsticker Codsticker's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigur
    Interesting game, that saga. I'm really interested how it compares to LotR. The battle boards indeed are innovative, all the other dice rolling is kept simple but works.
    I think the LoTR system is probably my favourite heroic skirmish system largely because of the alternating nature of the game turns. I also really like the simple stat system of Saga and the Battleboards, which manage to roll faction-specific fighting styles, special abilties and a certain amount of command/control all into a neat and tidy mechanism.

    Now, if I had a ton of time I would develop a game which combined those two aspects.
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    What the Modsticker said.

  10. #50
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Just been linked this! Lovely looking models

    I too struggled with the Anglo-Saxon army list. I can't work out how it's possible to field an Anglo-Saxon army that can actually use it's battleboard..
    Still, the Anglo-Danes are fantastic so I settled on them.

    Interesting reading your opinions on the games rules themselves. They seem to be designed as an anti-tournament rules set, which is no bad thing in my mind. The author has also mentioned that he's sacrificed realism for the sake of the game running smoothly, which may go someway to explain the lack of formation rules and charge bonuses.
    However, things like shield-wall formations are part and parcel of certain army's battleboards. So the Anglo-Saxons, Anglo-Danes, Scots etc etc all get abilities on their battleboards which emphasise this nature of how they fought - they all get things which reduce casualties, add defence dice and stuff like that.
    Other armies (I think) tended to only fight in shield walls because their opponents did, so wouldn't (and therefore don't) get extra abilities representing that sort of formation.

    And now I've realised I'm gibbering! But, in summary I think the rules are really quite good fun and the battleboards are really interesting!

    And your models are stunning. I've mostly got the same models as you, but only half painted and not even close to as nicely painted as yours!
    "Hit 'em hard, Hit 'em low and give 'em plenty of Dakka."

  11. #51

    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Oooh, those grape vines are really nice. Yoinking that idea...
    Last edited by Gwyddyon; 01-05-2013 at 03:30.

  12. #52
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Quote Originally Posted by sigur View Post
    @Crazy Harborc: Sounds cool, yeah. Armies were really small though at that time. IIRC, there are some sources saying that the official number of men when somebody was talking about "army" was around 32.
    Laws of King Ine. Late 7th century Wessex. Overused and probably misleading example, as the passage deals with theft and raiding and when an attack goes beyond that. The word ("Here" ) is used on the Viking "Great Army" in contrast to the Anglo-Saxon "Fyrd" in the later AS chronicle, and at that time definitely means what we would call an army.

    Which doesn't matter in this case, really. Very nice-looking Here. Or Fyrd, as the case would be. :-)

  13. #53
    Chapter Master Satan's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Your models are lovely Sigur, and I think you've pushed me over the edge. I was considering using som Drune models from confrontation as Gaelic troops, but I have to ask - is it necessary that they use 25mm round bases instead of square ones?
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  14. #54
    Librarian GitzBlasta's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    The basing rules for SAGA are pretty simple. Anything goes, within reason. Square, round, whatever!
    "Hit 'em hard, Hit 'em low and give 'em plenty of Dakka."

  15. #55
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Yeah, it isn't exactly strict on basing :-) Great game.

  16. #56
    Chapter Master sigur's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    @Codsticker: Hmm, maybe I should look into LotR some day. I got a bunch of 2nd hand minis for christmas last year, maybe a good reason to do something with them. As for battleboards - I think they can be pretty much added to any miniatures wargame. If they add much to the game itself or are more of a distraction I'm not sure. The battleboards in my mind basically work like a game within the game. Kinda like the 5th edition WHFB/2nd edition 40k magic/psychic phase really.

    @GitzBlasta: I don't know, to me the SAGA rules look a lot like they'd appeal to a tournament crowd. Sure, luck is a huge part of the game but the game itself, running very smoothly as you said and the general setup... it's all very modern and I think it would appeal to people who like tournaments. But then I might just be wrong. Overall I agree with you completely: SAGA is a fun game and the battleboards mechanic is certainly innovative and surely the reason for Saga's huge success. I'm sure we'll see a lot of similar mechanics in the near future as well.

    @Gwyddyon: Oh, feel free to. I liked those vines a lot as well. Should be a rather common thing but yet you don't see them too often on the tabletop.

    @ Kaptajn_Congoboy: Thanks for the further info, I'm by no means an expert (or well educated at all) on Anglo-Saxon times. Do you have any good links to share on the topic?

    @Satan: Thanks very much. As others said before, you can pretty much base them any way you like. If you look at Athelstan's plog here on Warseer, you can see his warlord, usually a single model, based on a 40mm base along with a flagbearer. Looks great and works just as well as and regular mini. You can also use multi-bases if you like. The great thing too is that those models are really inexpensive if you stick to Gripping Beast's (or Warlord's) plastics for the mainstray of your army. Either way, you don't need many minis at all. For a regular-to-large game (6pts) you'll need between 24 and 72 models (even though the latter is pretty much unplayable as far as I know. Usually it'll be around up to 50 models, one box of plastic dudes for 20.00 really) plus a warlord.

    Heyhey, not a grand update, but better than nothing. Another point worth of Anglo-Saxon Thegns, WIP:


    I also got my first 15 Fyrd assembled, based and primed. I'll see that I can write up a review of those unarmoured dark age warriors soon.

  17. #57
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Those are very nice looking WIP, A-S-Ts. Yes they are, they are. Hey, I CAN blame you (sigur), Yeah "but wife of mine" those GREAT WIP photos on Warseer...I just "had to but them". I could not resist.
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  18. #58
    Chapter Master sigur's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    @Crazy Harborc: Oh sure, just blame the internet stranger for your buying habits!

    Here you got the finished Thegns, adding another point to my army:


    ...and just now I notice that I forgot to do the shield damage. Oh well, so they're almost finished at this point.

    Apart from that I sat down and took a closer look at those Dark Age Warriors recently released by Gripping Beast. You can find the review here:

    GB's Dark Age Warriors Review






    Hope that you find the read interesting and/or helpful.

    The additional 12+3 fellas add yet another point to my army, allowing me to theoretically field a full 6 points army! (which seems to be pretty much the upper limit as far as Saga goes).



    C&C are highly welcome as always!

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  20. #60
    Chapter Master Satan's Avatar
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    Re: Sigur delves into the Dark Ages (SAGA, Dux Britanniarum)

    Great review. Thinking those plastics might be quite nice to pick up at those prices, feels like you can get all the minis you'll ever need pretty cheap?

    The thegns look great. Wouldn't have given the shields a second thought if you hadn't mentioned it!
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