Chill out! Its Frostgrave….

So many many games and suggestions for games end up being sent to me and its not often I take a punt on something without doing a little bit of homework first because with so little free hobby time its imperative that I spend my hobby pennies wisely and on things Im fairly sure will a) get played, b) be enjoyed and c) have some local gaming.


There has been a buzz lately about a game called Frostgrave for Osprey Publishing by Joseph McCullough.  Yeah you know, the Osprey Games who are renowned for their Historical stuff.  They’re worth checking out if you like that sort of thing and they can be found here:-

So what is Frostgrave all about? What’s the USP?

Well according to the blurb from Osprey Frostgrave….

Amidst the frozen ruins of an ancient city, wizards battle in the hopes of discovering the treasures of a fallen empire. In this fantasy skirmish wargame, each player takes on the role of a wizard from one of ten schools of magic, and builds his band of followers. The wizard’s apprentice will usually accompany his master, and more than a dozen other henchman types are available for hire, from lowly thugs to heavily armoured knights and stealthy thieves. Wizards can expand their magical knowledge by unlocking ancient secrets and may learn up to 80 different spells. While individual games of Frostgrave are quick and can easily be played in an hour or two, it is by connecting them into an ongoing campaign that players will find the most enjoyment. The scenarios given in the book are merely the beginning of the limitless adventures that can be found amidst the ruins of the Frozen City.

portada-frost01-04082015So lets take a look at the rule book itself…..firstly its reasonably priced and I think RRP is £15 but I managed to grab myself a copy for £9.50 delivered from Wordery via eBay.  Its a solid hardback, full of well produced colour glossy pages, beautiful artwork, and a front cover that really evokes the feeling of the game.  Its slightly smaller than most rulebooks which surprised me upon arrival but not a rulebook to be ashamed of that’s by any means. Its seriously well put together and laid out in a well thought out and simple way.  Mechanical diagrams to explain rules are clear and concise and help the reader understand concepts quickly.  The back is full of tables and free Warband lists to photocopy and use although the same materials are available via download and the Facebook community.  The production values and quality of Osprey stuff is apparent through out the book.

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My only complaint and it is a very minor one at that is that there is no Index linking page numbers to subject in this book but that is mitigated by having a fairly robust Table of Contents.  Sadly again there are no page number to subject list so whilst you know vaguely where something is and it wont take you a massive amount of time you wont know exactly where it is.

At its core, Frostgrave is a low fantasy skirmish warband game akin to the old Games Workshop favourite Mordheim.  I personally would say that Frostgrave is what Mordheim wishes it was but others may not completely agree with me there.  At its most simplistic you pick a wizard, a school of magic, and a warband, and go completing scenarios (included in the book) and skirmishes against other warbands in a campaign based setting gaining upgrades and funds to spend on gear to improve your warband.  That is it at a basic.

You have a certain amount to spend when setting up your warband, you can spend it on an apprentice to add more magical firepower, which is a suggestion I agree with strongly!  Then there is a selection of other troop types, War Hounds, thugs, thieves, trackers, Knights, Barbarians, and many more.  So many in fact you can even theme your warband.  The way weapons are defined in this, and the types of soldiers you can hire mean you can use many of your existing models to play this game in no time at all.  I had some old Celtos miniatures just sat around doing nothing so using them I’m creating a Celtic themed Warband.  Going to the Brigade Model’s website to buy some more about £30 later I had a rounded out Warband full of character and a look and feel I was really happy with.  I’ve also found that Hasslefree Miniatures make a range of Celtic looking minis that fit well with my Warband so my evil necro-Celts now have a Queen/ Witch riding her undead troll to push them forward.  You can buy miniatures anywhere for this game; GW Empire are a good look, North Star Miniatures sell Frostgrave specific box sets allowing you to build upto 30 soldiers which would be more than enough for 2-3 warbands, Reaper Miniatures are a good source of Wizardly looking models, Hasslefree make great miniatures which work well too but this is by no means an exhaustive list of what is available out there to use.

10849 frostrgrave-rear images (1) frostgrave demo

What do I need to play?

Well Frostgrave isn’t that miniature intensive to get playing, nor does it require a massive amount of specialist templates and tokens.  A pad, a pen, a warband of 8-10 miniatures and some d20 dice and you are playing.  Everything else whilst nice is not a requirement to play.  Yes of course you’ll need something to play on and scenery but you might already have some lying around from Warwhammer, Mordheim or Malifaux that you can repurpose.

The game can be played on a table from 2′ x 2′ to 4′ x 4′, which is good, as it can be played on most dining room tables.  It does recommend nice dense scenery.  Battle Systems Fantasy Terrain have recently completed a Kickstarter for some cardboard dungeon terrain which could be used if you were so inclined.  Games Workshop Warhammer or Age of Sigmar terrain is also fully compatible as are some of the excellent Pegasus Hobbies ruined gothic church kits which i fully intend on getting a few of.  Some more canny gamers keep a look out at boot fairs and in toy shops for cheaper terrain but at this time of year Poundshops and supermarkets are full of christmassy stuff which can be used for frostgrave scenery.  It wont take you long to find some awesomely inspirational images via Google simply typing “Frostgrave Scenery” or “Frostgrave Terrain” and of course for the truly lazy you can always buy pre-painted, pre-assembled stuff from eBay.

Just some quick images to give you the idea……

CNF1UWNWcAABGrE CNF1UWQXAAAxcPI frostgrave 003_zps3yibmcw4 Frostgrave_Ruined_Church_17.00_ images (2) images (3)

You can make your scenery as complicated or as simple as you like.  Chunks of polystyrene sealed and painted grey will happily suffice for ruined walls and broken down structures until you find or make better.  Scenery should have a very snowy, frozen wintery feel and I was very lucky to pick up a great deal on some Christmassy looking snow covered pine trees from eBay.  A great deal at £12.79 for 21 assorted sizes.  They come pre based in a clump of snow so require very little effort to turn into gaming scenery.  I was so impressed I ordered another 42!  It is my intention to build up a few crumbling wizards towers, a graveyard, some ruined houses and some Celtic looking terrain to round out the look and feel of my Celtic inspired warband.  I’m also on the hunt for some old scenery from GW or similar.  Back in the day GW released a plastic fortress which I intend on using to build the city walls of Felstadt aka Frostgrave.

GW Plastic Fortress assembled.

GW Plastic Fortress assembled.

GW Plastic Fortress components

GW Plastic Fortress components

So whats it all about then?

During each turn we have phases, first we roll for initiative.  Each player roles a dice, highest has initiative and is the primary player for the turn.  Then we have a series of  phases in order, Wizard, Apprentice, Soldier, creatures (Random creatures, such as Undead and Demons and Yeti’s stalk the ruins of the city).

The wizard gets to go first, he is the focus of the warband after all, you can activate him and up to 3 soldiers within  3″ of him.  Then the secondary player does the same, alternating at each phase based upon who won the Initiative roll at the beginning of the turn.

The apprentice phase is the same as above, primary player first, then secondary player.

Then the soldier phase you can activate any of your soldiers that have not gone yet, and the same with the secondary player.

When activated each figure can do 2 actions. move and move, move and fight, shoot and move.  Then you have the normal expected actions, jumping, climbing (and falling)
Models have a few stats to keep a track of….. usually the higher they are the better.  Movement (M), expressed in inches, Fight (F) which is a 0 or a number with a plus, +2, +3 etc again the higher the number the better the models ability to fight and attack.  Shooting (S), which is the same arrangement as Fighting.  Armour (A) which is a number again, Willpower (W) which is a plus number as Fighting and Shooting, and lastly Health (H).  So your model will have a “stat-line” as follows:-

CaptureThe stats are simple to follow, you do not have to remember any tables to hit or wound or anything like that.  It is all dealt with in one dice roll.  Lets take an example…..

In a fight both figures roll a d20 and add their fight value to it.  So we have a Thug who has a fight of  +2 against a Knight who has a fight of  +4  The thug roles a 6 on his d20 and adds his fight to that for a total of 10.  The Knight rolls a 12 and adds his fight for a total of 16.  The knight has more so he wins.  The Knight then subtracts the thugs armour from the Knights total roll.  The thug has an armour of 10 so takes 6 damage from his health.

Shooting works in the same way, though with modifiers for cover. I like to think of it as the opponents ability to hide or dodge against the archers aim.  It is a nice change to the roll to hit, roll to wound technique, as the higher you roll to hit, the more damage it can potentially do implying a more accurate shot.

There is a nice mechanic about rolling natural 20s for critical hits doing double damage which can lead to great story telling moments!  Its similar to the Crit hit mechanic in PRODOS’  Warzone Resurrection and AvP although in their case the lower the better with 1’s being Crits and Autokills.

Its a simple yet elegant system when used, and keeps the game fast and frantic.  Weapons can alter the effects adding a plus or a minus depending.

There are rules for when a model is reduced to 4 wounds or less and is considered wounded. Models will have a -2 to all rolls, and can only do one action.  A nice touch showing the reducing ability or an injured model and makes even an injured model an asset if the actions are simple.  It also gives you a chance to heal your injured and keep them in the game rather than they simply cease being operational.

Frostgrave is all about the Wizards and we’ve barely touched on them yet.  Your spells and spellcasting is an important part of the game, and with the sheer amount of spells to choose from it should be!  There are 10 different schools of magic:- Chronomancer, Elementalist, Enchanter, Illusionist, Necromancer, Sigilist, Soothsayer, Summoner, Thaumaturge and Witch.  Each school has its own flavour of magic and other schools spells will be complimentary and others opposed.

Casting works in the same simple way as combat does, you roll a d20, if you equal or exceed then the casting value then the spell is successfully cast.  If you roll less bad things can happen!  Depending on the amount you fail by you can damage yourself.  You can also get bigger effects to your spells dependant on how successful your attempt to cast is.  This is particularly important in Summoning Spells when larger more ferocious demons and bigger Contrcuts can be created/summoned and bound to service.  Wizards empower and boost thier spells ensuring success or pushing the level of success into the next bracket of success by swapping an amount of his/her health for a number to boost.  Spend 3 health and take 3 damage for an extra 3 on the result.  This can become really important when dealing with the level of failure or success as taking 1 damage to add 1 on the dice roll etc can be the difference between success and failure or the varying degress of success. Doing this I imagine the wizard straining hard to control the magical energies.

There is treasure to collect in the streets, dictated by the scenarios, and creatures roam the ruins too making the fights not just against the enemy warband.  I like that it adds something else to think about.

The normal winner of a standard game is the last warband standing, and all treasure and experience gets dished out for the campaign phase to upgrade your characters and spend on goodies.

To Campaign or not to Campaign?

The campaign based stuff is one of the best parts of this game, following your wizard and his soldiers through their adventures in the ruined city.

In a campaign game when your soldiers and heroes reach 0 health in battle they are out of action but not becessarily dead, although in Frostgrave even death isn’t the encumberance it used to be.  A player would roll on the charts at the end to see if they live, are wounded, or fully recover.  Permanent injuries can continue through the whole campaign, like smashed toes, blind in an eye, psychological scars, all sorts of things that add to your character, and all gained with a story to tell.

Certain activities in battle grant your wizard experience that he can spend.  Every 100 points of experience give him a level, and for each level he reaches he can increase a stat, fight, willpower, shoot, or health.  He/she can also improve a known spell making it easier to cast, or learn a new one, again adding to the customisation of your wizard, you can make him adept at spells he knows, or a walking spellbook full of spells for each situation.

When you find treasure in the game world it can be gold, that is spent on upgrades and new members of your Warband, or perhaps something else, an artefact like a Grimoire, a Magical Potion, or a Magic Weapon or Item for a member of your warband.  The rulebook contains a detailed and almost exhaustive section on all the items you can find whilst treasure hunting in Frostgrave although during a campaign I’m sure you could come up with more items as you delve deeper into the crypts and dungeons of the city.  Thats part of the beauty of this setting…its all pretty exhaustive but there is so much scope for expansion and home brewing scenarios and new equipment and rules.  The world really is your oyster.

You can spend your hard earnt gold on new recruits to replace the old, lame and injured, or upgrade your war gear between battles.  As you progress you will need a base to send your raiding Warband out from. Yes you actually get a base of operations, you pick between a selection and each one gives you a specific bonus.  You can then add upgrades to your base that provide all sorts of in game bonuses for you and your warband.  As the campaign progresses you can improve your base to provide all sorts of goodies.


GW’s Mordheim has always been a solid go to skirmish campaign style game, and whilst others have tried to dethrone it nothing has come close in all its time.  Age of Sigmar has a skirmish element but that seems to have been a massive flop with most Warhammer players going back to older versions for their gaming.  Frostgrave not only gives Mordheim a bloody nose it but steals its lunch money, slips on some shades and flips it the bird as it walks away! Not long after release the first expansion for Frostgrave was announced and even spoiled in the back of the main rule book.  The Thaw of the Lich Lord comes to the gaming table this month and North Star Figures have been running a Nickstarter to generate interest and give players/backers the opportunity to buy everything they need at great prices.  I backed this project and now have all the goodies plus the new book arriving shortly, giving me time to complete my Celtic Necromancy Warband before I jump into a cultist Summoner warband and eventually into my daughters Frozen inspired Warband.  With the promise of more expansions to come it looks on a regular release cycle and further Nickstarters from North Star Games Frostgrave looks set to become THE fantasy skirmish campaign game, and rightly so. Osprey and Joseph McCullough have put great work into this.  Go to Osprey and get your order here although eBay and other avenues are open for ordering. It is a must have for any fantasy gamer.

The King is dead, long live the King!

Panzerfauste – the word from Rob and Steve

Panzerfauste Banner

Panzerfauste Banner

Recently I had the opportunity to pose some of my (and others) questions about Panzerfauste to the brains behind the new game, Rob Alderman and Steve Blease, of Hysterical Games.

Rob Alderman

Rob Alderman

Steve Blease

Steve Blease

So here goes, enjoy!

<JM> Today I will be talking to Rob and Steve from Hysterical Games about their new Kickstarter, Panzerfauste.

Hi guys.  Firstly let me thank you for your time today.  I’m sure you’re both really busy with the Panzerfauste Kickstarter so I won’t keep you both away from the updates too long.

<Rob> Not a problem, thanks for having us! But yes, things are mighty busy! 

<Steve> And tiring! I wasn’t expecting running a Kickstarter to be quite as draining as it is!

<JM> Lets start at the beginning shall we?  Would you like to introduce yourselves and Hysterical Games?

<Rob> My name is Rob, I am a hobbyist/wargamer with some 19 years of experience under my belt. I’ve been a fan of historo-fantasy wargames since I discovered Flintloque in 1997 and it has always been a dream of mine to release my own. So, with Steve Blease’s blessing, we decided to remake Panzerfauste under the banner of Hysterical Games (pun very much intended). 

<Steve> I’m Steve, I’ve been a wargamer for a very long time now, let’s just say my first box of Airfix soldiers cost 15p and the first rules I bought were Operation Warboard by Gavin Lyall when they came first came out! I’ve written for various magazines, freelanced and run my own small cottage industry company, Wessex Games, for over twenty years now.

<JM> Where did the idea for Panzerfauste come from for you guys?

<Rob> …Steve. 

<Steve> I first discovered the idea of historical fantasy over twenty years ago when a magazine called Games Review Monthly published a great article called Warhammer in the Age of Reason. The author postulated a continuation of the Warhammer Fantasy timeline into the historical equivalent of the Malburian period, using the (then) Citadel historical range and converted fantasy figures (such as 40K Grots with added tri-corns. I loved the core idea that fantasy did not have to be stuck in the medieval/early renaissance and things kind of developed from there…

<JM> Maybe you can tell us a little bit more about the game itself?  What is Panzerfauste?

<Rob> Although I could tell you, I think Steve would do a better job. 

<Steve> In basic terms Panzerfauste is a 28mm fantasy game set in a world were technology has advanced to early C20th levels. So instead of axes and spears, the fantasy races now use machine-guns and rifles. Whilst some people might think it is WW2 with funny races, it is more than that and although a lot of the imagery and background takes its inspiration from WW2 there is a lot more to it than that from both a world point of view and a game.

<JM> What makes Panzerfauste different to other options for people looking a new game?

<Rob> Well, it’s very simple to get into. For gamers that love small skirmishes, driven by stories, there is the Skirmish game. After that, there is the mass battle game, for those times where you have amassed a larger collection of figures. Basically, the game scales wonderfully, there is a tonne of character and I think it is very, very easy to relate to. We all have some kind of story with the history of early 20th century conflicts, be that a fascination, a family-member or even a computer game, film or book… We all relate somehow. Then, furthermore, bringing that into the realm of fantasy, well, that’s where your creative freedom comes in. 

<JM> Congratulations, by the way, on the funding of your Kickstarter.  It’s been flying through its stretch goals with more and more being unlocked daily.

I think I read somewhere that Rob anticipated a small but fervent following for this game but could you ever have anticipated it to be as wilder success as it has been so far?

<Rob> Absolutely. It’s one of the factors that has to be considered with such a niche (within a niche) sub-genre such as Historo-fantasy wargaming. It will always have a smaller fan base than most other genres, BUT we didn’t expect to reach quite these kinds of lofty heights with the project. It’s been awesome and a heck of a ride!

<Steve> I’m just gob-smacked at how quickly it funded. I expected many sleepless nights waiting for us to reach the target. Hitting it in just two hours was amazing (thanks to everyone for that).

<JM> How far do you think, realistically, this Kickstarter will go?  You’re currently between £17,000 and £18,000 with the funding achieved at £5,000.  I know from talking to Rob that you have plans all the way up to £26,000 at least.  Do you think you’ll hit those goals?

<Rob> I can only hope so. In fairness, other projects of a similar level at a similar time have ended up anywhere between £25,000 and £70,000. Let’s just wait and see – I’d rather not tempt fate. 

<Steve> Absolutely no idea!  I keep reminding myself that this is a brand new company introducing a game that, to many people, is a brand new period. It’s not like it is another SF game or another fantasy where people are inherently familiar with the basic settings so we are in unknown territory really…

<JM> The community certainly is excited for this.  I’ve seen shares, forum posts and interest from Scandinavia, Germany and down through Poland and Romania, not to mention here in the UK and the US.  Do you think Panzerfauste will be able to compete on the level of similar skirmish games already in the market?

<Rob> I’m a big fan of Skirmish games, and people know that quite publicly. I play Relics, Norsgard, Malifaux, Batman, Necromunda, Confrontation, Arcworlde and much more! I think Panzerfauste’s refreshing simplicity and characterful nature will allow it to sit on a similar playing field to some of those games. 

<Steve> Everyone I know who has tried the basic skirmish rules loves them, the core Guts mechanism Matthew developed is still pretty unique in the hobby, which does surprise me as it is simple, clever and effective. I’ve played historical skirmish games with the system and games in other periods, it is very adaptable. I encourage anyone reading this to get over to Wargame Vault, download the free Beta set and give it a spin using whatever figures they have to hand…

<JM> Speaking of further fields like Romania do Hysterial Games have any plans to support the launch into these countries?  With the bigger boys of GW and Warmahordes grabbing attention there it can be difficult to get other new games going.  Do you have plans for demo guys or materials at big events to generate the buzz a new game needs?

<Rob> Absolutely! Our focus will be on our home territory at first, in the UK, but we will of course try to expand beyond that. I’m keen not to explode too fast, but just grow at a slow and steady rate. Of course, I won’t deny sales! 

<Steve> I’m hoping that this will be a real community project, driven by players. When I was involved with Flintloque and the original Alternative Armies, we generated an incredible buzz with wargamers which saw the game explode in a very short period of time. Unfortunately Mac had to sell the company and the game due to financial issues that pre-dated the game which was a hell of a shame. I don’t think the new owners appreciated quite what they had in 1997/8… 

<JM> It would remiss of me not to ask about the elephant in the room…..PRODOS.  Great minis, probably some of the best on the market today, but do any of the issues they have had of late concern you with regards to Panzerfauste delivery and supply?

<Rob> Not particularly. Obviously, I do work for PRODOS at my day job, but I can see why all of their delays occur with AvP. I know for a fact that AvP has not delayed other products or work, in as much that in converse, other projects have not slowed down AvP. Of course, that is only with the knowledge that I have – I am by no stretch the puppet master there!

<Steve> As a backer of the AvP KS I can totally understand why some backers are pissed with Prodos – I’m still waiting for my copy of AvP too! That said they have a decent track record of supplying third party projects, most recently White Dragon, so I have no major concerns with Prodos’ ability on this score. Still want my copy of AvP though!

<JM> Do you foresee any other potential dangers to the Kickstarter?  And if so what are you doing to mitigate them?

<Rob> Only delays, however, I believe in open communication and trust. Therefore, as this Kickstarter is in our control, if there are any delays, we will be quick to tell people and explain exactly why. 

<Steve> Asteroid hitting Earth? 😉

<JM> How will hysterical Games be handling the distribution of the Kickstarters and latterly the retail product?  Is Panzerfauste based out of the UK or Poland?

<Rob> UK. We hope to ship from the UK, using UPS tracked service. I cannot find a better service that I trust more. Sure, it costs maybe 10-15% more, but it’s really worth it for peace of mind and speed of delivery.

<JM> What were the difficult steps in getting this venture off the ground?  I mean 18 years is a long time to keep a project bubbling along and waiting to catch a break?

<Rob> I think Kickstarter sort of expects to see a certain amount of development done already. I wanted to be sure that the project was very clearly deep into the design process and even partially manufactured. It has been 18 years since Steve first announced and released Panzerfauste at Wessex Games, but I’ll let him talk about that. 

<Steve> I don’t think it was difficult. Rob was the driving force behind the Kickstarter, I was happy pottering along releasing the odd few white metal figures with Wessex Games when I scrapped up a bit of cash with a view to devoting some more resources to this and some of the other Wessex Games projects once my son is through university and becomes a huge rock star!

<JM> What are Hysterical Games plans for Panzerfauste world domination post-Kickstarter?  Is there some **REDACTED** plan?

<Rob> Ha ha! Well, in this Kickstarter alone, we have concept art for 7 factions. Now that might not be feasible, so we will likely release the latter two (sub-factions, really) at a later stage and then move into the next Theatre of War in approximately 12 months time. Steve has a 5 year action plan that I think looks more like a 10 year one, but hey, at least he’s prepared!

<Steve> 8 factions Rob! Pretty much the whole world is mapped out, most of the races are pinned down and depending on how things go a five to six year history laid out. The game could be massive, you only have to look at a historical game such as Flames of War and all the theatres of WW2 they still haven’t managed to cover and think how that would look from a Panzerfauste point of view – epic just about covers it!

<JM> Will the Panzerfauste Quarterly become part of the new games resources?  A bit like CTC did for Warzone Resurrection and White Dwarf did for GW games?  Do you have plans to use it for player led content and articles?

<Rob> Absolutely! We would love to receive fan submissions, things like scenarios, new unit types, painting guides, conversion guides, short stories! Anything! It’s certainly a Hysterical Games publication, but it’s open to being an enjoyable read.

<Steve> Again I’m looking at this being a community driven resource rather than an internal one. With Flintloque I edited a small fanzine called Orc in the Hills that proved very popular and contained lots of player written content. I’m hoping to create something similar here…

<JM> When can the player base expect to see Panzerfauste in action at Conventions and industry shows?  When would you expect that players can get involved with demoing and testing, if at all?

<Rob> Yeah, I love the show circuit. It’s like some kind of freakish circus, where the same people attend and get to know each other as a sort of fellowship. We expect to get started showing people how to play the game very soon indeed, using our own collections of old figures. No harm there for now! 

<Steve> I’ve asked Rob to book us into some shows. Theoretically there is nothing stopping us running games using the old Wessex Games figures as I have in the past, but it would be nice to show off some of the new toys.

<JM> Speaking of the industry, has there been much feedback from the wider industry at large?  Robs other hat is obviously as Global Head of Sales for Prodos so we all know he’ll be rattling cages to get this game going in stores but will we be seeing Panzerfauste out there after the KS?  Have larger national chains or web stores begun to take an interest in stocking and distributing Panzerfauste yet?

<Rob> There has been more interest than I anticipated. Although my daytime hat is with Prodos, my fingers are in many pies and my network is pretty big! It seems that plenty of people can see the growth potential of the range. 

<JM> What do you think will be the model count difference between Skirmish scale games and Mass Battle scale games in Panzerfauste?

<Steve> Skirmish is a section level game so approximately ten figures a side, though you can play with less or more. I have played platoon level with Skirmish but employed some house rules, especially for movement, to not slow the game down. Mass Battle is your “Bolt Action” platoon level game so thirty odd infantry, plus support weapons, war-beast “tanks” etc. I hope one day we see some company level, 100 figure a side multi-player games on tables at shows etc.

<JM> Will the Skirmish game allow players to take the larger “Brute” models?

<Steve> Definitely – and war-beasts. There is nothing in Mass Battle that cannot be used in Skirmish one way or another…

<Rob> In fact, that is one of the major parts of re-writing the skirmish game – including rules for War-beasts and Brutes.

<JM> What are the recommended battle sizes?  Necromunda uses Credits, Blood Bowl Gold Coins, WH40K/WZR/WH uses points…..what will Panzerfauste use?  Is there some cool setting specific way this is done?  Warbonds?

<Steve> Skirmish is a bit old school in that it eschews points battles, everything is scenario driven with the scenario objectives being the key. It is more like an RPG in this respect and the game encourages you to run a section through a series of games, gaining experience, replacing casualties, awarding medals etc. 

<Rob> Mass Battle, on the other hand, uses Points values. Though, with the Skirmish game, I am sure we *could* come up with a points system, I somehow feel like it would defeat the purpose of having such a ‘fluffy’ game. Mass Battle is where competitive players should really go. 🙂

<JM> Lastly, thank you very much for all the efforts you’ve gone to to bring this wonderful rich world to us and thanks again for your time today.  If you want to send any message to the Backers or post any final comments please feel free to.

<Rob> I’d like to thank Steve for allowing me to help with this awesome project and also thanks to all of our fans – new and veteran!

<Steve> I’d like to thank everyone who has shown faith in us through the KS and to the small mad bunch of gamers who have been on this ride since the beginning – I hope they are holding on tight! J

Panzerfauste – a 28mm Historo-fantasy wargame of Gnomes, Dwarves, Orcs and many others fight a war of attrition across a mythical landscape.

Panzerfauste Banner

Panzerfauste Banner

Today I’m going to be taking a look at Panzerfauste, a recent successfully funded Kickstarter for Hysterical Games, the wargaming vehicle of Rob Alderman and Steve Blease.  Heres a link to the Hysterical Games website for you all to go take a look:-

And, for all the latest updates and news, please ‘Like’ Panzerfauste on Facebook:-

Players can also download the free, quarterly magazine from Wargame Vault!:-

So what’s it all about?

Welcome to The Land and the world of Panzerfäuste, our exciting game of mechanised warfare in a fantasy world. Enter a world where Dwarves, Orcs, Gnomes and a plethora of other creatures continue their millennia long struggles, but with modern advances of tanks, sub-machine guns and grenades. Fight on battlefields where death is impersonal and only a heartbeat away. March your troops across green fields, through muddy trenches, over snow-capped mountains or into dank caverns… Come fight in the world of Panzerfäuste and see if you can reign supreme in The Land!

Panzerfäuste is a fun ‘Historo-Fantasy’ miniature wargame setting, in which 28mm scale miniatures are used to depict the everyday struggles of standard ‘Tolkienesque’ fantasy races such as Orcs, Dwarves and Elves fight out battles with 20th century weaponry.

Ok so this game should appeal to the historical wargamers and fantasy wargamers alike.  If you’ve never played either the humour and setting may appeal to you on a comedic level as armies of “French” Gnomes, “German” Dwarves, “British” Orcs and “Polish” Troglodytes battle in a twisted fantasy world set in and around WW1 & WW2.

Firstly the game comes in two variants:- the Skirmish (think Batman/Judge Dredd/Malifaux/Necromunda scale forces) and the Mass Battle (think Bolt Action/KoW/WH scale forces).  This gives players an oppotunity to invest at a very manageable level.  They do not need to spend hundreds of pounds to get involved which is always a bonus!  The beta rules are available for Download so getting hold of rules is free, easy and couldnt be simpler!!

You can download the Beta rules for Panzerfäuste: Skirmish here: SKIRMISH BETA RULES
You can download the Beta rules for Panzerfäuste: Mass Battle here: MASS BATTLE BETA RULES

The game can be played using the Skirmish rules, with a Section of infantry or played using the Mass Battle rules which cater for collections at Platoon to Company level, with two or three Sections of troops, armoured support and a character or two making up the bulk of most games. This means that the average game of Panzerfäuste requires no more than 30 or so miniatures.

The miniatures for Panzerfauste will be manufactured in a high quality and resilient polyurethane resin material, perfect for miniature gaming figurines by PRODOS Games. Hard-wearing and capturing excellent detail, these miniatures truly pop.

I’m going to attach a Gallery of images so people can see just what the sneaky nefarious plans and scheming minds at Hysterical Games are plotting for this game.  Go take a look on the links themselves and let me know what you think.

This game is currently funded at 340% via Kickstarter but remains open until 08-11-18 at 8pm.  Its currently collected £17,000 worth of pledges and is smashing stretch goal targets on a daily basis.  I’d strongly suggest you go and pledge.

Pledges can be anything from £1, the “Private” level pledge which gets you in on the Kickstarter and grants access to the post KS goals and add-ons all the way upto £750 which grants access to “Field Marshall” level pledge.  This is a collosal pledge which is Limited to only 5 Pledgers (one per current planned race….hmmmm…mysterious 5th race!?) allowing you to design your own character and get yourself in the game! Hysterical Games will work with you to create a new, named character to fit into the setting and create a miniature of it. This figure will have a likeness to you, but mixed in with the race of your choice! Choices will be first come, first served, so if you absolutely MUST be an Orc, pledge soon!

You will also receive x10 of your custom character, as well as Two REINFORCED Infantry Platoons!

A total of:
6 x Section Sets
2 x Command Sets
2 x Support Weapons Sets
(from any of the unlocked races) plus a copy of ‘Panzerfäuste: Skirmish’ AND ‘Panzerfäuste: Mass Battle’ and get access to purchase any of the add-ons this project has to offer.

This is the pledge level for any serious Panzerfauste-a-holic looking to play huge games.  Pledge quickly before these pledges are all gone!

What are you waiting for?  Go get involved!

Time to get Terminated!!!!! Terminator:Genisys first thoughts


Tonight in the Mancave I received Hairy Gamer Tris’s and my copies of Terminator:Genisys by Riverhorse Games.

Terminator:Genisys Box Front.

Terminator:Genisys Box Front.

Terminator:Genisys Box Back.

Terminator:Genisys Box Back.



I’m going to put down some first thoughts as I debox it and at a later point I will do a proper review with pictures etc.

Designed by, Alessio Calvatore, the brains behind some of Games Workshop’s recent successes and Mantic’s Kings of War this game is timed perfectly to coincide with the cinematic release of the same name.

Distributed by Warlord Games this skirmish game costs £70 which is towards the top end of most gamer budgets for a single game. The Hairy Gamers copies came in at around £54 each after scouring for a great deal online. The game is designed for 2+ players of ages 14 and up and is planned to take roughly 1 hour after setup. Due to many small parts it is not recommended for children under 3 years of age.

The game itself weighs in at a decent 1.25kg and is deceptively small at only 12″ x 9″ x 4″. Whilst its may be small it is certainly crammed full of awesome miniatures by Renendra Ltd and some nice components. The box itself is a little flimsy and given time and use will certainly suffer as a consequence.

Once opened the player is presented with:-

a glossy 128 page Rulebook,
a quick reference sheet of all the weapons and troops available in the game,
a “fast-play” 16 page reference booklet,
2 sheets of “punch and play” game tokens and range rulers
a folded full colour double sided gaming mat.

Box Contents.

Box Contents.

beneath this collection of goodies is a box containing the miniatures for the game:-

10 Terminator “Endoskeletons”
5 Terminator “Crawlers”
16 Human Resistance Soldiers
1 Exclusive Kyle Reese Resistance miniature
2 sets of polyhedral dice (2xd4, 2xd6, 2xd8, 2xd10, 2xd12, 2xd20)
1 Fate Dice

Game Miniatures.

Game Miniatures.

Overall I’m very impressed with the miniature quality. They are clean crispy miniatures with superb detail up there with other miniature manufacturers I have dealt with previously.


Im really looking forward to getting the minis snipped off the sprues and doing some painting. Watch this space and my review page on Facebook, The Hairy Gamers, for further updates, a full review with pictures and a play through/game report.