So, this is only my second game of Warhammer: The Old World, but it’s time to get into the narrative driving my army. I fielded these Mousillon Bretonnian’s 200 years in the future(!) when I last played Warhammer Fantasy Battles. The release of Warhammer: TOW has given me an opportunity to develop the origin story of that desperate army…

Mousillon was slipping. Crops were failing, peasants starving and the populace began engaging in depraved acts. Once grand estates were now crumbling shadows of their former selves. The nobility were desperate to turn things around, but a decade of punitive tithes had only accelerated the slide to want and ignominy. Duchess Adalene Monteaux chose exile rather than face the shame of what had befallen her subjects. With her demi-fleur-de-lys heraldry masked, she led her household and those that would follow from her family home of generations towards the Border Princes. This voluntary exile would retain honour for her family name, but the truth was she was distraught with the idea of abandoning Mousillon and Bretonnia. She would seek any opportunity to reclaim her good name.

The army and retainers found the journey to be gruelling, lack of provisions, bad luck and ill omens seeming to drag at every step. It was not long before those assembled began to disparagingly refer to the Duchess as ‘Malfleur’, the ‘bad flower’. However, their fortunes seemed to change when an enigmatic and powerful Lady named Lisseult joined them. No one quite knew where she came from, but she wielded great power. The army marched with renewed and relentless vigour under her influence. The ranks, which had slowly been depleted through disease, combat and desertion, began to swell in numbers. Things were looking up for Duchess Monteaux and her exiled army. Perhaps they would find redemption in the Border Princes and one day carve a path back to honoured society in Bretonnia.

I’m playing battles at the moment with no (visible) undead elements in it. Lisseult’s powers are growing, but she’s careful not to overplay her hand. Her role as advisor to the Duchess is developing, as is her influence. The first game saw the army face off against the Wood Elves of Athel Loren. Now they’re clashing with Beastmen Brayherds on the edge of that great forest. Duchess Monteaux is leading the force, which includes two Lances of Knights of the Realm, a lance of Errant Knights, two units of Mounted Yoemen and a unit of Peasant Archers. Let’s not forget the lance of Pegasus Knights! There’s also a damsel in there to represent Lisseult and a Paladin Battle Standard Bearer.

Here’s how things stood after the Beastmen Brayherd’s first turn. The Yoemen on the left hill are going to attempt to charge the warhounds, who are almost at the extent of their charge range (it was just over 16″ and their max charge range is 17″ (M8 + 6″ + 3″ Swiftstride)) . This led to a discussion about clipping and maximising. Basically, the rules indicate you must maximise number of enemy models engaged on both sides (in fact, it also references maximising contact, which is slightly different). I also states you must move the shortest distance possible in making the charge. While not explicitly stated, that would be the shortest distance to maximise. It also says you don’t need to wheel if doing so would cause you to miss a charge. All that being said, the charge roll ended up with a 16″ charge max and this is what that looked like…

So, a clipped charge, but that was as close as they could come to maximising number of models engaged.

Things proceeded pretty smoothly, though we had to check how many signature spells (lore versus faction) can be swapped, Disrupted vs Disordered, reforming after wiping an enemy out, oddities with the Lance formation being blunted, and how two engaged units pursue after an enemy giving ground. As units pivot to face away from the centre of the enemy unit before making flee, fallback and give ground moves, it makes some things a little clunky as the relative positions of units can change even after pursuits.

Things went smoothly for the rest of the game, though Phill got unlucky with a long flee roll, failed rally attempt and a flee of the board for his large unit of Bestigors.

We were just kicking the tyres on the new rules and they worked out well. There are still plenty of fudges when it comes to moving ranked up units, but that’s the point of Warhammer. Well, the spectacle of ranked up armies… not the fudging!

Until next time,