Saturday, September 27, 2014

Dwarves Vs. Orcs

Rick came over on Saturday evening and we played one final round in our September Song of Blades and Heroes campaign. I think we’re going to call it quits on this campaign and perhaps start a new one some time in October.


The Dwarves were attacking. The Orcs decided to defend in the swampy marsh area.

The scenario was “Take the Land”. Victory points were only scored for being in possession of objectives and the game ended when one side was wiped out or one side controlled all three objectives.


Gurk’s Explorers (The Boy’s New Orc Warband)

Gurk – Orc Warcheif
Quality 3+, Combat 4, 100 points, 1 xp
Leader, Tough

Augurt – Ogre
Quality 4+, Combat 4, 50 points, 1 xp
Big, Long Move

Orc Warrior #1
Quality 4+, Combat 3, 23 points, 1 xp

Orc Warrior #2
Quality 4+, Combat 3, 23 points, 1 xp

Orc Warrior #3
Quality 4+, Combat 3, 23 points, 1 xp

Orc Warrior #4
Quality 4+, Combat 3, 23 points, 1 xp

Orc Warrior #5
Quality 4+, Combat 3, 23 points, 1 xp

Goblin Warrior #1
Quality 4+, Combat 2, 15 points, 1 xp

Goblin Warrior #2
Quality 4+, Combat 2, 15 points, 1 xp

295 points
34 gold

Curly’s Crusaders (Rick’s Warband)

Curly – Dwaf Commander
Quality 2+, Combat 4, 95 Points, 1 xp
Leader, Fearless

Dwarf Warrior #1
Quality 3+, Combat 4, 34 Points, 1 xp

Dwarf Warrior #2
Quality 3+, Combat 4, 34 Points, 1 xp

Dwarf Warrior #3
Quality 3+, Combat 4, 34 Points, 1 xp

Dwarf Warrior #4
Quality 3+, Combat 4, 34 Points, 1 xp

Dwarf Warrior #5
Quality 3+, Combat 4, 34 Points, 1 xp

265 points
21 gold


(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

All set up to go – Rick’s Dwarves on the left, The Boy’s Orcs on the right. The Objectives were the outhouse, the campfire and the little tree in the centre of the woods.

On turn one the Orcs rushed ahead and seized the outhouse (I guess a few of them REALLY had to go) – others however were having trouble remembering how to tie their shoes and had to have the boss come over and remind them…

On the Dwarves first turn they all surged forward and seized the campfire! Huzzah!

On the Orcs second turn the boy started off with the orc that had rolled the  turn-over last turn… and rolled another turn-over… Having ascertained that he did, in fact not NEED to tie his shoes BECAUSE HE WASN’T WEARING ANY he promptly further held up the tribe by pointing out an odd looking cloud in the sky that he was pretty sure was looking at him funny prompting a vigorous debate amongst the orcs as to whether a cloud could, in fact, look at you at all…

At least they scored a victory point…

The Dwarves collected a victory point as well and the rest of the warband surged ahead towards the Orcs.

The Orcs apparently continued their debate about clouds or perhaps whether, if they had no shoes, was it necessary to tie their toes together…? (another turn-over was rolled for their first activation)

They did, however score another victory point for holding the out house.

As the Dwarves charged into view the debates quickly ended and the Orcs shambled forward to set up a defensive line… well… SOME of them…

On the Dwarves fourth turn they charged into combat, cutting down an Orc and driving another back.

At the beginning of Turn Five, the orcs got one of their goblins into contact with a second objective – which, starting with the next turn, would start netting them TWO victory points per turn… for what it was worth…? Also one of the Orcs holding the outhouse stepped away to take up the position in the line where one of his Orc brothers fell.

That was about it… someone rolled a turn-over…

The Dwarves surged forward and cut down two more Orcs!

I don’t have enough casualty markers to show where they ALL fell… just the two that died this particular turn.

Curly himself also decided to get in on the action this turn, charging in against Gurk and

At the beginning of Turn Six things started looking up for the Orcs. “Looking up”, in this case, is sort of a relative term meaning “didn’t suck as much…”

The Orcs did score TWO victory points – though I have yet to figure out how that was ever supposed to help them… Gurk charged back into combat with Curly and Knocked him down! The Ogre finally activated and charged into combat with a dwarf…

… caving his head in with his gigantic club.

The Orc and goblin that had been sitting at the table edge from the beginning of the game finally got moving and charged a Dwarf!

Things looked even BETTER at the beginning of the Dwarfs next turn when Curly got up and attacked Gurk again – and got knocked back down on his ass! (so he would start the ORcs next turn down and be at the mercy of Gurk!)

Things started to slip after that...

First the Dwarves knocked down the Ogre…

Then at the beginning of Turn Seven The Boy activated Gurk… and rolled a four and two ones!? So… at least Gurk would get a chance to crush the downed Curly before the turn ended abruptly… The had equal combat scores, but Gurk got +2 because Curly was knocked down and all Gurk had to do was beat Curly’s score to take him out…

Rick rolled a five…

The boy rolled a two… nope… can’t even kill a downed opponent…

The Dwarves finished up Turn Seven by taking out the Ogre and scoring a Gruesome Kill on a goblin – triggering a few morale checks… a few fled, none of the objectives still had guys in contact… so The Boy conceded the game and all the remaining Orcs fled.

I had thought, upon reading the scenario, that it might be interesting – there was no scoring victory points for taking out enemy – only holding the objectives… but as there was no time limit and it was only ended by one side being wiped out (or the odd possibility of one side controlling all three objectives) it still came down to a slugfest with the victor being the on that vanquished all his enemies… I think it would be hard to win this on victory points alone…

In the post game it was found that the Ogre and two of the orcs died, while one orc was moderately wounded and would suffer a reduction in quality for the next game (had there been a next game), and the other injured Orc would fully recover before the next encounter. The Orcs collected 20 gold – enough to hire a new Ogre, but that would leave them down two Orcs and a Goblin – though those that remained were slowly gaining some experience!?

The Dwarf injured by the Ogre was found to be well and truly dead. The Dwarves collected 40 gold and wandered through a Haunted Wood in their exploration phase…

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I’m not sure… I haven’t been really painting much…. Not sure if I’m going to continue this campaign… or start a new one… or what…

We shall see what we shall see. 


  1. Nice (and humorous) report! I'm a longtime dwarven partisan (thanks to Tolkien) so I was rooting for the dwarves. But I still couldn't help feeling at least a little sorry for the orcs. Sounds like they would've been better off taking their discussion elsewhere!

  2. Hi Tim! Sounds like a fun campaign. Too bad more people didn't show up. Hopefully, you'll have better turn out as the school year sets in.

    Question: Would you recommend the Song Of series for a casual gamer? A few years back, I bought DBA because you were using it a lot back then. However, my eyes started to cross and my brain seized up about 3 pages in. Would Song Of be easier to get into? (I'm really more inclined to skirmish level games anyway.) Does it handle most genres reasonably well?

    1. HI Gordon!

      I would definitely recommend it to a casual gamer. It is VERY simple to learn and very quick to play (easier than DBA!). Though for the very reasons I like it right now, some might find it a little too simple or abstract - troops are defined by their effectiveness in combat rather than individual equipment. There are two stats to remember (Quality and Combat) and there are a few special rules or traits that certain guys will have - but you needn't memorize every one in the book - just the ones any of your figure might have.

      I find magicians a little weak...

      Another nice thing is there are a number of reiterations of the same basic rules...

      hope that helps a bit..!?

  3. I went to the Ganesha Games website and found it bewildering. It was very hard to tell what games used the Song Of rules and which ones didn't. Am I missing something? I assume it is not just the ones with Song Of in the name, since it looks like Mutants and Death Rays is in the same group.

    1. Right. There are some other games there. The ones that are based on Song of Blades and Heroes usually say in the description "Based on the popular Song of Blades and Heroes mechanics" or "uses the Song of Blades rules engine" etc...

      A quick list of the ones using the same basic system:

      Song of Blades and Heroes - original fantasy skirmish game
      Song of Gold and Darkness - expansion for SOBH for Dungeon bashing
      Song of Wind and Water - another expansion for SOBH for wilderness adventures and stuff
      Song of Deed and glory - expended campaign system for SOBH
      Song of Shadows and Dust - street violence in the ancient Mediterranean
      Song of Arthur and Merlin - Arthurian version (dark age historical and more mediaeval options)
      A Fistful of Kung Fu - Hong Kong action movies in miniature
      Of Gods and Mortals - Mythological Mights bash on each other
      Fear and Faith - Horror
      Kooky Teenage Monster Hunters - Expansion for F&F
      Ghost Rangers - Expansion for F&F
      Mighty Monsters - giant monsters eat tokyo - different scale, but same basic system
      Samurai Robot Battle Royale - much like mighty monsters
      Flying Lead - modern version
      Hearts and Minds - expansion for Flying lead
      Song of Drums and Shakos - Napoleonic version
      Flashing Steel - swashbuckling-pirates-musketeers, etc. - I don't have this one... yet..
      Power Legion - brand new - Superheroes and villains
      Mutants and Death Ray Guns - post-apocalyptic version
      Tale of Blades and Heroes - fantasy role-playing game - same basic system with a bit more detal
      Hero of the Tales - expansion for TBH
      Tales of Beasts and Perils - expansion for TBH
      Vengeance from the Grave - expansion for TBH

      I think that's most of them...

      Oh there's Song of Fur and Buttons and Song of Our Ancestors - which I assume are the same system, but I haven't checked them out yet.