The Wardens of Gahyrst. Ep01.

It’s been some time now that I got the solo wargame Five Leagues From The Borderlands. I wanted to try it a while now, I think this is the right time.
I have a nice bunch of fantasy 15mm minis to start with. I also want a change of pace with regards to my regular solo roleplaying. Something different that requires less brain effort.

Since I’m a sucker for story continuity I will use Evie’s company as my band of heroes, with extra followers.

Heroes

Name Evie Gustav Rudiger Ardus
Agility 1 1 1 2
Speed 5 4 5 5
Combat Skill 0 0 0 0
Toughness 4 4 3 3
Will 1
Luck 2
Skills Library Leadership,Parry
Weapons Long Bow, Dagger Sword Bastard Sword Bastard Sword
Armor Light Armor Light Armor Full Armor, Helmet, Shield Partial Armor
Notes Avatar Retainer

Followers

Name
Nature Outcast Drifter Roving Wanderer Stout Yeoman Angry Villager
Skill
Weapons Sword Self Bow, Dagger War Axe Staff
Armor Militia Armor Light Armor
Notes Witch Slayer

Gold Marks 12
Medicinal Herbs 2
Story Points 1

Evie and her company returned to her hometown of Eerfeld. There, she found that her father, Baron Vogel, had been summoned to the capital months ago, never to be heard from again.
The manor was derelict. The villagers scared. Bandits and brigands roam the countryside. Orc and goblin marauders cross the river ever so often and an uneasy chill clouded the people’s hearts and minds as dark forces stir in the shadows.
No one is willing to pay allegiance to the Vogel name.
In an effort to restore peace and prosperity to the region and her family name to its former glory, Evie has reinstated the Wardens of Gahyrst.
Her close compatriots stand with her, Gustav and Rudiger, joined by Ardus, her father’s steward still guarding the ruined manor.
Four more brave souls have joined her, answering the call to drive off evil from the land.

Current village: Eerfeld (3,2,3)
Village 2: (1,1,1)
Village 3: (3,3,3)

Turn 1

Swindled: Lose 4 Gold
Study: Success: Evie: Medicine
Labor: 2 Gold
Adventuring: Roadside & Combat Encounter
Roadside: Hunter: Unfriendly: Corruption: +1 Dark Secrets
Combat: Outlaws: Renegades: Encounter while traveling
Number: 8+Sergeant (+1 Toughness), 2 Bowmen
Terrain: Distance 13″, Overgrown Ruins
Initiative: 6: –

A peddler runs his cart on the village of Eerfeld. “Talismans! Protect yourselves from evil”
“Look! Look what I bought” the so called witch slayer, essentially an outcast drifter says to Vogel. “This magical garlic scented bird cage can keep vampires at bay!”
Evie looks with disdain. “How… much did you pay for it?”
“4 gold marks my lady” He answers.
Evie takes it to return to the peddler, but he’s nowhere to be seen.
“You’ll work the fields to make up for the money you cost us.” She tells the outcast. “I’ll be at the old church library, see if we can find something useful.”
Her efforts proved fruitful as she found passages explaining how to perform healing.

On their way, they meet with what seems to be hunter. He has strapped a bow over his cloak, and a big skinning blade hangs without a scabbard, from his belt.
As they cross paths, an uneasy feeling overwhelms Evie. She can’t tell if it’s the stinking dirty visage of the man or the way he met her gaze, but something struck her as off. It’s not only after he has vanished from her line of sight that she recomposes his image. He was carrying a bag dripping with blood and the blade had dark dried blood all over it. She would have asked him to stop and show his bag, but now he’s gone. How could she have missed it? What clouded her mind?

Combat
Due to the miniatures at hand I switched the Renegades with goblins. It was pretty arbitrary, but I can live with it for now.

The wardens heard sinister laughter from ruins near the road. Carefully they go to investigate, only to fall upon a band of goblins.
Soon swords are unseathed, bowstrings drawn and combat ensues.
Evie cast an arrow, hitting its target, but it pierced through cloth, missing flesh.
Two spearmen charged, one at Evie and one at Rudiger. Evie used her sword skill to push him aside, while Rudiger, with sheer strength manages to break of the greenskin’s guard and hit him with his blade.
An arrow hits Rudiger, but doesn’t pierce his heavy armor. Another one hits Evie in the chest.
As the two opposing groups come together, closing in on the ruins, Ardus dispatched a goblin, while Evie, clutching her chest, falls to the ground…

A handful of minutes later, the fight is over. Rudiger, covered in blood stands by Ardus. He wipes of his blade and seathes it. The angry villager who had joined them is the only other man standing. Rudiger thinks he should ask his name, but now he must tend to his fallen comrades, and first of all, Evie.

aftermath

I roll on the aftermath tables.

Evie: Serious Wound. I use medical herbs: Dead. I use Lucky Break.
Gustav: Knocked out.
Outcast Drifter: Dead.
Roving Wanderer: Knocked out.
Stout Yeoman: Knocked out.

Found: victims: receive 3 Gold Marks
Items: Warhammer, Pistol
Threat reduced by 1

Rudiger tends to Evie’s arrow wound with some green moss, but the Angry Villager intervenes.
“Stop it! You’ll kill her. That doesn’t go on cuts! Only on bruises.” It is only by sheer luck that the leader of the wardens survived.
Most of the group is back in fighting shape. Their wounds superficial. Except the outcast drifter, the witch slayer. He didn’t make it, and the warband made a proper grave to put him in.
Ardus scoured through the ruins only to find the corpses belonging to the victims of the goblins. He took some private possessions found to return them to the families. Among the loot was a Warhammer and a pistol. A very useful weapon.
As they return to the village, and give the victims possessions to their families, some villagers offer a few gold marks to the adventurers as gratitude for giving them closure.

End of first Campaign Turn


Session Summary

Had so much fun!
The game flow was fast and easy. I mean yes, I had to go back and forth between some rules and tables, but after repeating a few times, I got the hang of it and could run the combat without much trouble.
I actually intended to write down the actual play in detail, but I got so carried away that I didn’t want to stop my game to take notes, believing I could reconstruct the battle.
I was so wrong. The flow may be fast, but so dense. There’s so much happening I can’t believe it can be resolved so quickly.
On purpose I avoided optional rules. I want to learn the gropes before delving deeper. Also there’s so much food for narrative. All those random events. One could even run minirpg games there (e.g my roadside encounter), converting to their system of choice. Might do it in the future.
The game is deadly but can be forgiving. Had to spend my one-off Lucky Break to avoid losing my avatar. Was lucky with the rest of the warband (3/4 just knocked out).
My only gripes so far is the fact that I have it in a crappy office print. Its worth a proper printing. And also that I don’t have all my minis painted to run all possible scenarios!
Now that I’ve settled on it, I need to roll some story about who or what Gahyrst is and maybe draw a map and name the villages.