The siege of Ostenhofen pt2

A Savage Worlds Warhammer Fantasy Battles mashup.

Brief Summary: In the previous part, our party of adventurers had just arrived at Ostenhofen, as the orcs began their assault. Even though, Evie, used her skills in public speaking to dissuade some deserters from abandoning the fight, the orcs bid their time, and struck when Ostenhofen least expected, managing to get a hold of the city granary.
After losing the battle, with half their remaining supplies gone, and the captain of the guard among the fallen, things are dire for the defenders. Our party managed to evade the pursuit and is just outside of the inner city walls.

I want to keep the roleplaying aspect at an adequate level, so I will ask a few questions to the Oracle before proceeding to the next roll of the siege engine.
Q: Are the inner city gates still open?
A: Yes
Q: Are there people still entering the gates? (Likely)
A: Yes
Q: Do the orcs attempt to attack the gates?
A: No
Q: Does the party manage to enter the gates in time?
A: False presupposition. Time is not of an issue, the orcs don’t attack at all the inner city walls soon.

Evie, followed by Rudiger and Gustav reach the tall inner city walls. Handgunners and Crossbowmen man the battlements, peeking over the crowd entering the gates in panic.
Down below, the gates are flooding with people from the outer city trying to get inside before the greenskins catch up to them. A detachment of halberdiers is nervously guarding the gate, while a guard has a hatchet at the ready to bring the portcullis down, at the sight of the first orc, irrespective of how many will die in the process.
“Fear will get even the best of us.” Evie points out. “Rudiger, can you make way so that we can enter safely?” She asks.
Rudiger nods and starts pushing people around.

Rudiger: Intimidation (d6): 4: Success.

As Rudiger pushes makes his way for Evie and Gustav to follow, a few Ostenhofeners turn to protest, but seeing the towering veteran warrior, clad in chainmail, stop short of opening their mouths.

Q: Does Bianka arrive?
A: False presupposition. Bianka reaches a different gate.
Q: Are the other gates open?
A: No, and the guards are very suspicious.

Halt! Who goes there? A guard shouts from atop the gate tower as he sees Bianka approach the shut gate.
“I’m a survivor from the granary battle. Let me in! The orcs shouldn’t be far behind.” Bianka shouts, looking behind her shoulder at the same time.
“How do I know it wasn’t you who let the orcs in, in the first place? Pretty convenient how you showed up, escaped from the orcs!” The guard replies, and doesn’t make a move to open the gates.
“I had to dive into shit to escape the damn creatures. I had to crawl in the sewers. I believe I reek so much you can smell me up there. I wouldn’t have to do it the orcs weren’t chasing me.” Bianka counters.

Bianka: Persuasion (d4-2): 1: Fail. Spend Benny: 3, Fail. Another Benny: 2: Fail.

“If you come any closer, I’ll put a crossbow bolt in your foot, you orcish swineherder.” The guard responds, and Bianka puts some distance between them, and tries to find the main gate.

Q: Does Bianka reach the main gate in time?
A: No, and, the other gate is closed as well.
Q: Do the other guards let her in?
A: No, but they just won’t open the gate, they won’t pose any resistance if she tries to come inside by other means.

She leaves and goes along the walls until she reaches the next gate. Closed as well. ‘Just my luck’ she mutters.
“Hey! You up there? Could you open up? I don’t want to be skewered by the orcs!” She shouts at the guards.
The guards look down at her. “The gate is barred from the inside and the portcullis has been lowered. We’re not to open to anyone. We won’t stop you from coming in though.” They laugh.

Bianka: Notice (d8): 8: Success with a Raise!
Q: Does Bianka notice any ledges or holds on the wall to make a climb?
A: Yes
Bianka: Climbing (d4): 5: Success

She scoffs at the guards, and looks carefully at the worn wall. Quickly she notices a couple of recessions where she can put her feet in, and a few extrusions that she can grab hold on to with her hands. Slowly, to make sure she makes no mistake, she starts climbing the steep wall. The guards who laughed out, slowly fall silent, as, she reaches the top of the battlements.
“I did as you asked. Now, where did the refugees from the outer city go to?”


Q: Does Bianka meet up with Evie and the rest?
A: Yes
Q: Does Prince Ingmar meet the party?
A: No
Intervention: Regress Plot. With the fall of Captain Volkmar, noone takes Evie and her entourage under consideration. She has not been heard of in the inner city, and the Prince doesn’t care about a lady, when his city is about to fall prey. Whatever the group does will be of their own volition.

Bianka finds Evie talking to a guard.
“Listen to me you mongrel. I was with Captain Volkmar when he fell. You better tell Prince Ingmar that Evie Vogel is here to see him.” She has started yelling, but the guard is unmoved.
“I don’t care. The Prince doesn’t know and doesn’t care about you. You better get moving.”


Battlefield Roll: 3,5=8 -> 13: Walls.

Not a day has passed, when the bells ring again. Soldiers are running in all directions, heading for the walls.
“Should we join them?” Rudiger asks Evie.
“What choice do we have? Evie asks.
“If things go south, we could always try the sewers…” Bianka says and lets her phrase trail off.
“I don’t care if the Prince will have us or not! We will do our part in the defense of Ostenhofen. Rudiger let’s go assist to the walls.” Evie replies, and the party heads off to the battle.

In this battle, the orcs will have triple the number of points that the empire has, but the empire has fortifications.
It’s going to be 500 points for the empire and 1500 points for the orcs.

I need to ask a few questions before setting up the battlefield.
Q: Is there a significant distance between the walls and the outer city houses?
A: No
So, the houses are close to the walls, providing cover to the attackers. It’s going to be within a bow’s short range (12″). I’m going to roll 2d6: 6″ range. That’s the visibility range for the orcs.
Q: Is there a defense small tower in the section of the wall under attack?
A: No, but, the walls are deep enough for two lines of soldiers to defend.
With this information at hand, I realize that the defenders will best use handgunners, crossbowmen and halberdiers, against foot orcs and goblins that will raise ladders for assault. But also, there’s a chance…
Q: Do the orcs have goblin spider riders with them?
A: Yes! Oh no, that’s a serious danger for the Ostenhofeners.
Q: How wide is the battlefront?
A: 1d3+1 typical unit widths (10″): 20″. So the battle is focused on only a small area. Why is that? Maybe it’s the only part which is covered by housing so close to the walls, so they decided to strike there.

Some further homebrew rules and clarification.
The battlements will allow half the battle front to make melee contact. Which means 5 per side. The goblin spider riders are an exception to this rule as they can climb any obstacle, and use the entire battlefront. They still have to abide by the hit only on 6 rule for attacking defenders in buildings.
Troops that can’t climb will have to use ladders to attack. This will take one round to set up before they can climb up and attack. As per the rules for fighting in buildings they will gain no battle ranks bonus. In addition they will lose the charge attack order bonus.
As per Warhammer LOS rules, only the front row of archers can shoot unless they stand on inclines hill.
Defenders are behind heavy cover.


Empire point count:
Captain (Champion, Pistol, Heavy Armor): 35 points
19 Halberdiers (Halberd, Light Armor): 9 X 19 = 171 points
Unit Standard: 10 points
10 Crossbowmen (Light Armour, Crossbow): 10 X 10 = 100 points
20 Handgunners (Light Armour, Handgun): 10 X 20 = 200 points
Total: 506 points


Orcs Point Count:
Goblin Spider Rider (Spear, Shield, Giant Spider): 11 X 20 = 220 points
Goblin Spider Rider Boss: 21 points
Unit Standard: 10 points

50 Orc Warriors: (Light Armour, Shield) 8,5 X 50 = 425 points
Orc Boss (Light Armour, Shield): 36 points

20 Black Orc Warriors (Light Armour, 2-H Weapon): 11 X 20 = 200 points
Black Orc Big Boss (Light Armour, 2-H Weapon): 95 points

50 Orc Archers (Light Armour, Bow): 9,5 X 50 = 475 ponts

Total: 1482 points


Whoever wins initiative, places units last, so they get to choose.

Turn 1:
Initiative: Empire A♥️, Orcs Q♣️.
The goblin spider riders and the black orcs are on the left flank, while the orcs are on the right flank.
The Halberdiers are right behind the crossbowmen. on the left flank, and the handgunners are on the right flank.
The party is with the handgunners.

Empire Turn:
Since the empire won initiative they get a chance to shoot.
Crossbowmen (vs Goblins): 4 hits: 4 Wounded, No save.
Handgunners (vs Orcs): 3 hits: 2 Wounded, No save.
Bianka (vs Orcs): 2 hits: 2 Wounded, 1 Saved.

Orc Turn:
Animosity: 5,2,5: No units suffer.
Orc Archers (vs Handgunners): 2 Hits: 1 Wounded: No save.

16 Spider Riders and their Boss Charge. Only 10 are able to attack at any time.
Goblins (vs Crossbowmen): 2 hits: 2 wounded: No save.
Goblin Boss: 0 hits
Spiders (vs Crossbowmen): 1 hits: 1 wounded: No save.
7 Crossbowmen fight back: 5 hits: 2 wounded: No save.
Battle results: Goblins (+3 kills, +1 standard), Crossbowmen (+2kills, +1 high ground): The goblins win the fight.
Crossbowmen: Ld: 4 vs 6: Success. They stand and fight!
So it’s 7 remaining crossbowmen vs the remaining 14 goblin spider riders and their boss.

The walls overhang a densely populated part of Ostenhofen. Through the streets and alleys, the greenskins converge and launch their assault.
“To arms! Man the battlements!” The captain shouts as goblins riding giant spiders appear on the left flank. “Draw. Aim. Fire!” He orders and the crossbowmen release their bolts, striking down 4 goblins. The strength of the bolt is such that it pierced through the flimsy goblin shields without trouble.
The volley isn’t enough to stop the charge of the gigantic beasts, who climb the walls as if they were flat ground, and attack the crossbowmen. The fighting is fierce and 2 Crossbowmen fall under the spears of the goblins while a third is cut in half by the mandibles of a giant spider.
They don’t go without a fight, as they kill two of the greenskins that crash down on the ground below, much to the indifference of the black orcs who wait for the goblins to finish their assault so they can follow up with ladders. The goblins though have managed to push their way up on the battlements, and the crossbowmen lose the advantage of their defenses.
On the other flank, the handgunners let off a thunderous roar from their arquebuses, killing two Orcs that are setting up their ladders. Another one is killed by Bianka’s careful aim.
Orcs archers shoot at the battlements blindly, killing one of the handgunners.

Turn 2:
Initiative: Empire 3♠️, Orcs 10♥️

Orc Turn:
Animosity: 2,4,5: No units suffer.
Orc Archers (vs Handgunners): 2 Hits: 0 Wounded.

Orcs climb the ladders and attack the handgunners.
The Handgunners second row shoot at the chargers.
Handgunners ranged (vs Orcs): 7 Hits: 2 Wounded: No save.
Handgunners melee (vs Orcs): 3 Hits: 0 Wounded.
Orcs (vs Handgunners): 2 Hits: 1 Wounded: No save.
Battle results: Orcs (+1 Kills), Handgunners (+1 High Ground). It’s a draw.

7 Crossbowmen fight back: 5 hits: 2 wounded: No save.
Goblins (vs Crossbowmen): 2 hits: 1 wounded: No save.
Goblin Boss: 2 hits: 2 wounded: No save.
Spiders (vs Crossbowmen): 2 hits: 1 Wounded: No save.
Battle results: Goblins (+4 kills, +1 standard), Crossbowmen (+2 kills, +1 high ground): The goblins win the fight.
Crossbowmen: Ld: 7 vs 5: Failure. They break and flee! 2d6″: 11″.
So it’s 3 remaining crossbowmen. The 12 goblin spider riders and their boss pursuit. 3d6″: 5″.
The Black Orcs set up ladders.

Empire Turn:
Halberdiers Panic Test: 7 vs 7: Success!
The halberdiers charge at the goblin spider riders.
Halberdiers (vs Goblins): 7 Hits: 4 Wounded: No save.
Captain (vs Boss): 1 Hit: 1 Wound: No save.
Goblins (vs Halberdiers): 2 Hits: 0 Wounded.
Battle results: Halberdiers (+5 Kills, +1 High ground), Goblins 0. The goblins are automatically broken.
Flee: 3d6″: 11″. The halberdiers don’t pursuit.

Handgunners (vs Orcs): 7 Hits: 1 Wounded: No save.
Orcs (vs Handgunners): 0 hits.
Bianka (vs Orcs): 1 hit: 0 wounded.
Rudiger (vs Orc Boss): 1 Hit: 1 Wound: No save.
Battle results: Handgunners (+2
Kills, +1 High ground), Orcs 0: Orcs lose the fight.
Orcs: Ld: 8 vs 4: Fail. The orcs are broken. Orcs Flee 2d6″: 6″. Handgunners do not pursuit.
Orc Archers: Panic Test: 6 vs 7: They hold.

The spider riders make short work of the crossbowmen who falter and run for their lives across the battlements as fast as they can. Not expecting such an outcome, the goblins are slow on their pursuit and fail to catch up. Much to their demise, as the halberdiers take the opportunity to charge their flanks. The halberdiers captain meets up with the goblin boss on the battlefield. With a quick slash of his sword, the goblin’s black guts cover the spider mount. The halberdiers prove true their fame as defenders of the realm and manage to kill 4 more of the greenskin riders. The goblin resolve is known to be frail, and they turn and run as fast as they can, descending the walls, past the black orcs who are untouched by the goblin panic, and continue setting up ladders to climb the walls.
On the other flank, the first of the orcs manage to climb the ladders, only to be greeted by a barrage of fire, sending two of their kind to their death. The fight on the battlements openings is fierce, and one handgunner is killed. The defenders push back, and with renewed strength they kill more of the orcs. Alongside them is Rudiger, fully clad in his chain hauberk, wielding his sword with skill. He notices an orc that must be the unit leader and shouts out to him. The orc accepts the challenge and attacks. But Rudiger has faced the greenskins before and knows what to expect. He easily deflects the blow with his shield and follows up with a strike that decapitates his foe.
Seeing the battle against them, and their leader gone, the Orcs go down their ladders and turn to flee.
A cheer is heard from the handgunners.

Turn 3:
Initiative: Empire 8♠️, Orcs 5♠️

Empire Turn:
Halberdiers: Set up defensively on the walls.
Crossbowmen: Rally: 5 vs 7: Success.
Handgunners: Reload.
Bianka (vs Orcs): 1 Hit: 0 Wounded.

Orc Turn:
Animosity: 1: The orc archers suffer from animosity: 5: Squabble and do nothing.
Goblin Spider Riders: Rally: 7 vs 5: Fail. 3d6″: 11″: Off map.
Orcs: Rally: 2 vs 7: Success.
Black Orcs climb the ladders.
Black Orc Big Boss (vs Halberdiers): 0 Hits.
Halberdiers (vs Black Orcs): 7 Hits: 5 Wounded: No save. Reduced to 4 Wounded, due to battle front.
Captain: Pistol (vs Black Orcs): 0 Hits.
Battle Results: Halberdiers (+4 Kills, 1 High ground), Black Orcs. The Halberdiers win the battle.
Black Orcs: Break Test: Ld 4 vs 4: They stand their ground.

The goblin spider riders flee off to the distance, away from the battle, as the black orcs reach the wall defenders. In the fight that ensues, the huge black Orcs are fought off and 4 of them are killed by the valiant men.
The orcs on the other side stand and regroup, while the archers start fighting among themselves as to how they should continue. The handgunners take this opportunity to reload.

Turn 4:
Initiative: Empire A♦️, Orcs 7♥️

Empire Turn:
Handgunners (vs Orcs): 7 Hits: 2 Wounded: No Saves.

Captain (vs Black Orcs): 2 Hits: 0 Wounded.
Halberdiers (vs Black Orcs): 4 Hits: 1 Wounded: No save.
Black Orc Big Boss (vs Halberdiers): 1 Hits: 1 Wounded. No save.
Black Orcs (vs Halberdiers): 0 hits.
Battle Results: Halberdiers (+1 Kills, 1 High ground), Black Orcs (+1 Kills). The Halberdiers win the battle.
Black Orcs: Break Test: Ld 9 vs 8: They are broken. Flee 2d6″: 10″. The halberdiers pursuit 2d6″: 5″, they don’t catch up.

Orc Turn:
Animosity: 6, 5: No Animosity.
Orc archers (vs Handgunners): 1 Hit: 1 Wounded: No save.
Orcs climb ladders.
Handgunners shoot (vs Orcs): 4 Hits: 0 Wounded.
Handgunners melee (vs Orcs): 4 Hits: 1 Wounded: No save.
Orcs (vs Handgunners): 1 Hit: 0 Wounded.
Battle Results: Handgunners (+1 Kills, +1 High ground), Orcs 0. The handgunners have won the battle.
Orcs: Ld: 4 vs 5: Success. They stand their ground.

The Black Orcs continue their fight, but the stern Halberdiers do not falter. They kill another Black Orc, which have had enough. Seeing how hard it is to storm the walls, they turn back and flee, running down the ladders. The halberdiers try to catch up, but they can’t close the gap.
On the other side, the orcs are reduced in numbers by another volley. They climb back up, but fail to hold their position.

Turn 5: (Last Turn)
Initiative: Empire 5♣️, Orcs 10♣️

Orc Turn:
Animosity: 6, 5: No Animosity.
Black Orcs: Rally: 4 vs 9: Success.
Handgunners (vs Orcs): 4 Hits: 2 Wounded: 2 Saves.
Orcs (vs Handgunners): 2 Hits: 1 Wounded: No save.
Battle results: Handgunners (1 High ground), Orcs (+1 Kills): Draw

Empire Turn:
Halberdiers: Return to battlements.
Handgunners (vs Orcs): 4 Hits: 3 Wounded: 1 Save.
Orcs (vs Handgunners): 2 Hits: 1 Wounded: 1 Save.
Battle results: Handgunners (+2 Kills, 1 High ground), Orcs 0: The handgunners win the battle.
Orcs: Ld: 5 vs 4: Fail: They are broken. Flee 2d6″: 5″
Handgunners: Pursuit 2d6″: 4″ They fail to reach them.
Orc Archers: Panic Test: 5 vs 7: Success.

The black orcs return to order, and the captain of the halberdiers, willing to live another day, orders the troop to return back to their formation on top of the battlements.
On the far end, the handgunners exchange blows with the orcs, killing 2 of the greenskins, and losing one of their own. Once more, the orcs falter and run away. The handgunners wanting to taste the smell of victory rush after them, but they can’t reach them.

With several dead and wounded, the orcs tactically withdraw. The walls held up another day. Until the next orc attack. Rudiger was renowned in the battle, and the party begins to make a name for themselves. Meanwhile, the supplies are dwindling down to 1 more weeks.

Remaining Empire Points: 2499 – 118 = 2381
Remaining Orc Points: 9477 – 491 = 8986

Session Background: A heavy wargaming session, I think I captured the feeling of how hard it is to storm the walls. Truth be told, I was scared that any flank could fall at any time due to a missed morale roll, and then everything would be a lot different. But the defenders held.
The SW roleplaying was limited to the first part of the session.
With only one week of supplies left, what will happen next? Will rationing begin with risking of losing morale? Will the party try to flee the city somehow? Will there be an exodus in general to save themselves? I’m curious to find out.