Fals’Krag Session 41 – Bugbears and Goblins

Covid-19 restrictions were greatly relaxed here just before Christmas – meaning I got to celebrate with my whole family. On New Year’s Eve, a small group of my mates got together (first time since March for most of us) and caught up.

We also played a ‘modern’ Call of Cthulhu game – the PC’s were all characters from “Scooby Doo” and the adventure was U1 The Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh (D&D), converted to the CoC 1980’s on the coast of Maine, USA. We had a lot of fun: by the end of the night Velma was badly wounded, Scooby was very paranoid, Shaggy extremely obsessive, and Fred confused. (I may have insanity and characters mixed up.) They didn’t actually meet the smugglers (which probably would have killed someone at that point), but found drugs and Canadian whiskey being smuggled down the coast, and the body of the house owner missing for twenty years! I’ll post the character sheets and adventure notes up on my resources page when I have some time.

Last weekend we managed to get together again. With five of my seven players available, we restarted my mega-dungeon. I summarised the previous session, and people tried to remember what their characters can do. It was a great restart (particularly the moment when the dragon arrived) and we are playing again tonight – I think with everyone!

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(10th Sunsebb): Coming out of the building they sight some morlocks. Lanliss, Bacon and Hardaz move to attack them, but they retreat into the ruins. As the group moves forward, they are fired on by bugbears with crossbows from the roofs of buildings on both sides of the street. Merxif begins to summon a tiger on top of a nearby building and Winter fires back. The dwarves and Lanliss move into the lower levels to fight the morlocks. The tiger appears, leaping into one group of bugbears as Summer flies over to attack the same group. Seldrel casts a fireball on the second group, knocking some of them unconscious and wounding the others. Seldrel notes a large black shape approaching from the east rapidly and yells out a warning in elvish about the approaching dragon. The first group of bugbears are now all dead or unconscious, and the last two of the second also see the dragon. They jump down from the back of the building and Merxif sends the tiger after them. The large black dragon swoops down and spits acid at Seldrel who has been flying just above the street. He’s badly wounded and dives down into the building they emerged from. Merxif reveals his dragon orb and suggests that the dragon is tired – it needs to go home and sleep. With the morlocks finished off, the rest of the group come out to see the dragon retreating back to the eastern lake!

Merxif heals Seldrel and they quickly head into the next building, with Lanliss scouting invisibly. There are two bugbears and some more morlocks. The morlocks attempt to ambush the dwarves as they enter only to have Lanliss appear behind them. The fight doesn’t last long. The rest of the building is searched. A ladder leads to the roof through a large hole, and there are signs the bugbears have been staying here recently. This block of the ruins clear, they decided to head to the west edge of the cavern, and search the buildings there.

Some snakes, a gelatinous cube, damaged statues and a few gargoyles are the inhabitants of the first set of buildings. While in good condition on the outside, the interiors are badly damaged with missing walls, rubble and many cobwebs, except for where the cube has obviously been. Behind these buildings a narrow path ascends the cliff and cave entrances can be seen. The first few are little more than shallow holes with signs of bats, rats and beetles. Higher up, two wider entrances show signs of use. Lanliss scouting ahead hears indistinct voices. Invisible, he finds six goblins waiting just inside the first cave. Prepared, the dwarves rush up and in to attack, followed by Lanliss, while the rest place themselves on the cliff path with a view inside. The goblins are tough like those from caves in the cliff to the north. Some more goblins come from further in the cave to fight, while two more and an ogre leave the other cave. Seldrel catches these on the path with a grease spell. He and Merxif hold them back, striking them as they fall and try to stand again. Winter is in a position to pick off wounded goblins with arrows, and Hardaz finishes off the Ogre.

Painting: Warhammer Forces of Chaos #2

My second set of five Chaos Warriors. These are all Citadel / Warhammer single piece plastic figures. I think these came from a friend who’d bought extra figures. If I’d bought them they should have been packs of four or six the same. Two distinct sculpts, but not too different from each other or the original Hero Quest figures.

The chaos warriors got gun-metal armour like the previous sets. Axe wielders (0737 Citadel, 1997) then got their armour lightened with silver, and silver highlights. The halberd wielders got green ink on their armour and gold highlights. I wanted to do something different with the shields, and went with a two colour diagonal pattern. That was still a bit plain so I thought about putting an image or something over the top. Digging through my bits and pieces turned up a sheet of decals marked “Dark Elf Shields” – and these three white symbols (and only three) were just the right size.

I’m very happy with the final result. This now gives me an assortment of nine chaos warriors, who will also do as general evil/undead warriors, or even magically animated suits of armour since there’s no visible flesh (assuming you excuse boots and gloves). After taking photo’s I (of course) realised that I’d missed something – the silver on the chainmail of the halberd warriors! That got remedied before I took them out for a spray of clear acyclic.

Next off the tray: Probably the Hero Quest “Gargoyle”. I’m thinking of doing him as a statue, with a little bit of modification so that he’s not so balrog-like.

Painting: Warhammer Forces of Chaos #1

I’ve just completed five figures from Hero Quest as my first project for 2021: four Chaos Warriors and the Chaos Sorcerer. I’ve got five more Chaos Warriors started, and I think this is only the beginning of a lengthy run of Warhammer figure painting.

These five figures were fun to paint. The main reasons I’ve enjoyed doing them, and will continue are exactly why I got just past halfway through my Space Marines last year and haven’t gone back to finish them. These are all one part plastic figures with simple poses, nothing complicated but they do have interesting armour design and quite a bit of detail. While I’m going to have similar painting themes with the three different sculpts of chaos warriors, I’m still enjoying this and thinking of ways of making each have a distinctive look. (The marines, while being three chapters, were essentially fifteen identical, very simple and boring, sculpts. Maybe I can pick at them in between my warhammer fantasy painting.)

I particularly like the Chaos Sorcerer. I started out with a darker flesh/grey skin colour, that I thought was too dark, and lightened it to the very pale grey it is now. (It looks a bit whiter in pictures than it really is.) His hands are a little too big… a lot of the painted versions online have these painted as gloves, but there’s a lot of texture on both sides that I wouldn’t expect if you wore gloves. This figure is a perfect figure for any undead caster in my D&D games. The base decoration was fun too – I’d cut some skulls off the helmets of some of my other chaos warriors and one remained in good condition. I thought it would be fun to use. It sits of a pile of small broken sea-shells.

The chaos warriors got mostly gun-metal armour, with a bit of red ink to tint it, then silver edge highlights. The armour can look fairly dark, or lighter and shiny, depending on the amount of lighting.


Background: Hero Quest (Milton Bradley & Games Workshop) came out in 1989. I had both this and Warhammer Quest (1995), while a friend had both of these, and Advanced Hero Quest, and most of the expansions for the games. A group of us played through the initial games, and spend years on and off with Warhammer Quest. Over the years I collected a lot of figures – frequently to have them for these games and be able to use them for D&D.


Some simple pillars

This is my last painting work of 2020 – finished on the 30th Dec. Four simple terrain pieces for use in a variety of games I run.

My mega-dungeon has had a number of chambers with various stone pillars or blocks, and there are more my players haven’t encountered. So far, they have most often been represented on the table-top by something like a d6. I decided that it should be easy to come up with something that looked the part and could stand in whether the actually block/pillar is a simple square block of stone, or an ornate tapering 4′ high stone pillar.

Each of these is simply a bunch of 20mm square bases glued together with a bit of shaped acrylic sealant on top. Bits of flocking on the edges has been painted like moss. There’s a bit more sealant used in between the bases which both helps hold them together and gives them a little bit of weight. (Figure just for scale.) They aren’t anything remarkable, but they fulfill their purpose.

It’s just into 2021 as I post this, so Happy New Year! Hopefully, this year is a better one for everyone than the last. Best wishes to you all.