Monday, 27 November 2017

Fantasy Dungeon Delving ~ In 10mm

Some years ago, browsing the internet for game ideas, I was amazed to discover it was possible to purchase an entire range of 10mm metal monsters and critters exquisitely sculpted and designed to be used in classic old school style dungeon crawl games. To my astonishment and delight this range of miniatures was complemented by a 10mm 3D resin dungeon. "WOW" I thought "Dungeons & Dragons style games in... how small.. 10mm, wow, that impossible, surely!!!!" But sure enough, I could buy a complete game of figures plus the 3D tiles at a very reasonable price. Far less, in fact than it would ordinarily cost me to acquire even a half a single fantasy army in 28mm scale. Yeah, seriously, I mean it.

Yes, it's possible to purchase a lot of nice metal and plastic 10mm fantasy miniatures from various stores and on-line companies.. a hotch-potch of variety from various other ranges. But to my certain knowledge, only Pendraken Miniatures offered a complete range of monsters and a 3D resin dungeon.. designed specifically for small skirmish scale games, or/and for playing role-playing adventures - using miniatures. All of which would fit on a small dinner tray, or minute coffee table! 

However, I was disappointed to discover there were no rules to go with the figures and dungeon. I was so taken by the idea of putting together a game in this scale, that I contacted Dave Pengilley and he in turn put me onto his son Leon: and he asked me if I could write a set of rules to go with the Pendraken fantasy range. Thus "Dungeon World" was conceived and created.

The result was a game I created for that company many years ago now. The fully play tested rules were sound, flexible and enjoyable to play, and created a stoic and loyal hardcore knot of gamers, who steadfastly still follow the Dungeon World game.. since its conception in 2008.

Over the last couple of years I've sadly been busy with my novel writing, and other gaming projects. But I still like to get my 10mm dungeon out every now and again and play a good old game using my old rules... or even a classic old game of Dungeons and Dragons (actually, 5th edition works remarkably well in this scale as well).

How many of you remember being there for the original Gary Gygax Tactical Studies Rules game of Dungeons and Dragons, or the original Chainmail game? RPG was a bit different back then, *wink*. I find myself repeatedly drawn back to old school rpg, specially using these cool 10mm figures, which I use with a vengeance. I will often build up a mini dungeon crawl campaign in the classic and nostalgic hack and slash old school style of the 1970's, and I have included (follows next) just one of these classic old AAR`s. Hopefully it will inspire you to take a closer look at 10mm gaming as an alternative to the larger and more common scales!

Troll Hunt

This article and betrep has been re-edited/re-written and updated 
from my old website.

The interesting thing about this hobby is how we have this habit of being all excited over a range of figures, a new scale or game genre; then over time, we lose the spark that maintains the fire, and the once treasured pieces get shoved to one side (unloved and unused) in a box, while we move onto other currently more interesting things. For just that reason, I like to retur to old treasures from time to time, so as never to lose touch with their importance.

But the intriguing thing is: very often, maybe even years later.... we end up discovering a rekindled interest in `all things old` leading to a refreshed resurgence in these dusty and banished cast offs. This has indeed happened to me after a very long absence of interest and totally drained enthusiasm: I have, indeed, just rediscovered my love of 10mm fantasy, and in especial, the little game I wrote many years ago. "Dungeon World" has served me well and I have many happy memories of playing this game and putting it through its paces.

When I created a set of rules for 10mm Dungeon Crawl Gaming, I always had the Pendraken Miniatures range in mind. Yes, I do use the odd bits and pieces from other companies... what gamer doesn`t? But the large bulk of my collection (98%) is all from the same source.

While I`m all for diversity, personally I do prefer the aesthetic symmetry created by collecting from one favoured company... fleshing out personality npc types, creating themed miniature cameos for special encounters, and so on. I only really purchase elsewhere when I need to fill a specific gap in my collection which is not covered by my preferred provider.

Pendraken has always remained my preferred choice for 10mm Fantasy, basically because thanks to Germy the guys there were offering a complete 10mm Resin Dungeon and a full range of Dungeons & Dragons style monsters to go with it. The choice to continue collecting Pendraken Miniatures was (for me) a natural progression from this. Later on, I expanding my fantasy collection to include Jacobites for Northern border incursions, English Civil War and Monmouth Rebellion... all to add a sense of `realism` to my quasi-medieval/renaissance fantasy world.

...okay, Monmouth is stretching that premise a bit, but hey... its all really just another extension of Imagi-Nation Lace Wars, right?

Where I did find myself picking off figures from other companies was really only shown in my small collection of stalwart dungeon heroes.

When I started building up Dungeon World, there weren`t that many choices for heroes (which was my mistake: because I didn`t know the available Pendraken range well enough at the time to pick and mix a few Ancients and Medieval personality types into the cauldron to create my necessary Warrior, Mage, Rogue, Elf, Dwarf, Halfling... bla bla, traditionally associated with RP gaming. So I turned to Copplestone Castings for those and bought a set of nine 10mm heroes from their Middle Earth range (the unofficial Fellowship).

However, when Leon from Pendraken later sent me one of the new off the shelf  boxed starter dungeon sets I was delighted to discover inside, was a packet of beautifully sculpted heroes and personality types, which completely filled the gaps I had earlier been forced to expand my horizons to seek.

Just a quick word on my modelling.

I started playing long ago in the last century (Uugh! am I that old). 
The golden days of 1960`s and 70`s `old school` gaming where the likes of Donald Featherstone, Terrance Wise, and Gavin Lyall adorned their wargame books with (usually black and white) photographs of plastic Airfix miniatures – basically children`s toys newly promoted to the table for the new breed of `grown ups` to play with. These were basically kids` toys... no way to dress it up... this is exactly what they were! Long before the precision scale modelling of today, excellent though it is; the appeal of those glory days is for me, by association, still an important part of the whole spectacle.

I play with toy soldiers and am proud of it. Like Peter Pan, a part of me never quite grew up. As a result, I still seek to make my collection look and feel old school in their assembled appearance. So please forgive me, and perhaps look with a less critical eye at my modelling efforts... it is deliberate. In the past, I`ve gone the Eavy Matal route; with show case pieces, dioramas and exquisite King’s Random one off`s, and yet I find myself repeatedly drawn back to the old, often shiny, stylised paint jobs of my youth. This now is out of personal choice, and not just bad painting (that`s my excuse and I`m sticking to it *wink*).

The following scenario was put together to help those who are new to Dungeon World, to better understand the rules of the game. The concept, easy though it is, sometimes seems to elude new players because I don`t always follow standard accepted norms in rule writing. I`ve never been scared of breaking a few rules to create a few new ones of my own. Hopefully the following pages will show exactly how a game of Dungeon World plays out, and will encourage more experienced gamers alike to take a delve into this fascinating alternative to their other table top endeavours.
Please enjoy.

 Dungeon World

"Troll Hunt - First Quest" A Campaign is Born:

So, with feverish hands you`ve probably thrown open your new 
Pendraken Starter Dungeon Set, gone oooo and aaaaa over the contents of your initial purchase… and you`ve no doubt found how incredibly quick and easy it is to paint your very own 10mm miniatures, you`ve pored over the rules, fallen madly in love with the game concept (I hope), and now you can`t wait to cut your teeth on an actual game.

That`s how I was when I first discovered 10mm dungeon crawl wargaming. Only, when I started there were no rules available for playing this style of table top gaming – there still aren`t. I guess the scale is considered too tiny and fiddly by many. But the visual appeal and the small space needed to play a substantial game is an appealing consideration none the less, which is what prompted me to look into this scale in the first place. When I discovered there were no rules available for this genre of game, I invented my own.

Thus, I have written the following scenario and battle report for you to get an idea of how everything works.

The rules for Dungeon World have been fine tuned over a period of several years, by testing out this rule and that... discussing everything with my players, and listening to all the helpful advice they could add to make the game better. Mostly, the rules have been tweaked here and there due to using the system to play an actual long term campaign with my family and friends. The following cameo is part of a simple little campaign that I initially used to play test the rules with my family and friends (plus the help of a local games club).

The following `session` will help give you an idea how an average adventure might be played out... I say `might be` because there are many various ways the game can be set up, depending on the needs of individual groups of players (or even solo player); the following is just one example. 

The Heroes

Sola Battlewitch:
Movement 5
Weapon Attacks 4 (7-8)
Armour 4
Wounds 6

Multi Shot, Dedicated Shot.


Movement 4
Weapon Attacks 6
Armour 5
Wounds 7

Berserk Attack.


Sir Crispin
Movement 4
Weapon Attacks 8
Armour 6
Wounds 6

Berserk Attack.


Dwarf Scout (female)
Movement 5
Weapon Attacks 4
Armour 4
Wounds 7

Listen, Trap, Initiative Bonus. 

This first quest is like the pilot episode of a new TV show. The 
characters are not yet fully fleshed out, and the plot can still leap in any direction at a moment’s notice.

Players: My daughter Tiffany is playing all four heroes, while 
Hillary is the Draken Master. This suits Hils fine, as she loves being the dungeon master in role playing type games (Dungeon World uses the term Draken Master in honour of the Pendraken Miniatures being used). My job today is to sit and watch them both play, and to write the narrative.

The Story Line:

A small town nestled deep in a mountain valley has been attacked repeatedly by a rather nasty Troll called Narka. This oversized bully has a liking for human flesh, and tends to come out of his lurking place at infrequent times during the long cold winters to drag off any luckless innocents he can find.

It just happens that the party of adventurers (i.e. the heroes) are sitting round a large inglenook fireplace, drinking and talking quietly among themselves in a dark corner of an inn (why do most role play adventures always seem to start in a drinking house)… when suddenly, an old man in a tattered robe approaches them and asks if he may sit down and join them in an ale. Everyone instinctively looks towards Sola, the spokeswoman and un-appointed leader of the group.

The old man tells them about the troubles in the town, about the Troll; and how the community is caught in the clutches of fear, wondering when the creature might strike again. Narka hasn`t bothered the town for a few months and people are starting to get anxious again; "The Troll must be hungry, and I think he will soon come looking for his next meal – unless he is stopped first!" The old man fixes everyone with piercing eyes, and continues: "I see great potential in you all… here is a map. It leads to a section of an ancient underground complex ruled by the Troll. He is a dangerous foe, and none here in this town has the skill or courage to face him! But there is great wealth to be won in his domain, and… possibly his abode even contains some lost magical artefacts... devices... buried from a bygone age".

At this last comment, the old man notices the sudden fire which burns deep in the heroes eyes.

"Prove yourself by killing him and perhaps we’ll meet again".

The old man thrusts a crumpled scroll towards the middle of the table, and without further ado he hobbles out of the front door and vanishes into the night.

Quest Goals:

After journeying for several days and nights to the old dungeon complex shown on the map, the heroes prepare to descend into the depth. The goal is to kill Narka the Troll while collecting as much treasure as possible along the way. If the heroes can retrieve some of the ancient magical devices found within the dungeon, so much the better.

The heroes start the game with 5 Victory Points. This means that the hero team can be killed off and re-spawned five times (as a group total) during the game before the Draken Master wins by default.

Move 1:

(Entrance Description): At the centre of the entrance chamber is a small covered well. The wooden covering is rotted in places and the heroes can see that the well itself is full of mud and slime. A foul smelling mist rises from the well and clings to the floor, and the heroes can hear shuffling feet as several creatures approach from the shadows. The stench of Orcs assails the heroes nostrils.

The heroes automatically win initiative for the first move.

Springing forward from the entrance steps, the four intrepid 
adventurers take in the scene around them and quickly fan out, already preparing to take on head to head anything that approaches them from the shadows.

A few Orcs and an undead skeletal archer block their path!

Sola runs forward and takes up position to cast a magical Multi Shot with her magical flaming staff. Seven dice clatter onto the table, but despite having two Orcs clearly in her sights… for all her efforts she only scores a single wound on one of the monsters – at this stage in the game a single hit is easy to remember, so the wound is jotted down on a piece of paper, rather than a token placed underneath or beside the base of the injured monster.

Sir Crispin and Red advance steadily and take up positions flanking their leader. The Dwarf Scout follows close on their heels. The four companions form a strong defensive line against any charge attacks the enemy might mount.

A lone Skeleton Patrol guard tries to find a bead on the intruders but its line of sight is blocked by a mound of fallen rocks, and an Orc`s muscular frame hinders the undead archer from aiming a shot at Crispin.

Its quite an amazing feeling to play with miniatures each about the size of your little finger nail, and each dungeon room could fit onto the open palm of one hand.

Move 2:

The monsters win initiative for the move… beating the heroes score by one digit on their die, despite the Dwarf woman`s initiative bonus.

With an angry snarl, the Orcs rush forward in enthused anticipation of the kill… their pack mentality already over- whelming their primitive minds with instincts of bloodlust and violence. – Orcs get a special ability called "pack" which means each Orc receives an extra attack (To Hit) die for each and every additional Orc within the same melee.

One Orc runs round a corner to attack Sir Crispin. Another leaps over the well to join its companion. A third creature attacks Red round the far side of the rocks. Sola cannot find a legal target during the heroes Non-Mover`s Action Phase, and the game quickly advances to the Melee Phase.

Neither Red nor the creature attacking him manage to inflict any hits on each another. But over on the other flank Sola and Sir Crispin slay both their Orc opponents. However, the vile monsters are using their special pack ability and end up placing four wounds on the heroes… two hits each.

The Initiative stays with the monsters on the 3rd Move, and the remaining Orcs charge forward, eager to get to grips with the heroes.

The lone skeleton archer takes aim and shoots at Sir Crispin – and misses.

Once again Sola is engaged in combat and cannot use her flaming staff to shoot any magical missiles at her foes. Instead, Sola and the Dwarf combine their strength and slay one of the Orcs in melee; yet despite the two Orcs throwing 6 dice with their own attack (2 each +1 a piece for attacking in a pack) they roll badly, and a single hit is all the damage they can dish out.

Sola is singled out for another hit.

Move 4:

The Heroes finally throw high and win Initiative. Their line of 
defence seems to be holding firm so far, and they try to press more deeply into the complex.

Sir Crispin moves forward slowly to cover Sola as she dashes for the large heavy looking wooden door on her left… could the portal lead to a chamber and treasure beyond? 

The Dwarf Scout, with her wild berserker’s heart barely able to contain the impassioned anger she feels coursing through her blood, the faithful hero moves to aid Red who has been battling the last of the Orcs all on his own.

The skeleton takes aim and shoots at Sir Crispin, but once again – it misses.

The Dwarf chops at the Orc, inflicts a single hit. But the Orc has already taken a wound from a previous move, and the result turns into a kill. On its return swing the Orc cuts wide and misses the Dwarf by an arm’s length, and the foul smelling creature crashes gurgling to the floor, and moves no more

Author`s note: I notice that both Tiffany and Hillary seem to be
using a simultaneous knock for knock routine in melee, and I ask them both why they have chosen to do this instead of playing it by the book? Hillary replies that Tiffany and herself had decided (before the game) to alter the normal rules for a slight change of pace (i.e. normally the mover hits and kills first, and then the non mover fights with what is left).

I just nod and smile to myself – pleased the rules are versatile 
enough to be customized so easily and so spontaneously.

On the following move (the 5th) the Initiative swings back in the Draken Master`s favour and the remaining Orc charges towards Sir Crispin, but not before the Skeleton bowman looses off another arrow - and misses again.

For its pains, Sir Crispin dices the bold Orc into a number of small pieces.

On Move 6, the Draken Master maintains Initiative and the  Skeleton finally shoots - and hits. It scores a single 6 on the kill dice. Sir Crispin feels the dull ache of an arrow as it pierces deep into his side; a wound marker is now placed beside the figure`s base.

Move 7, and the Draken Master wins the Initiative once again. The Skeleton shoots, but its lucky streak has come to an end almost as quickly as it started and the arrow clatters harmlessly off the wall.

But on Moves 8 & 9 the heroes wrestle Initiative from the enemy 
two moves in a row. Sola opens the door ahead of her, and discovers a small chamber. The room is bare, except for a large table covered in bowls and dishes and fresh food of various descriptions. The Witch moves over to the table and explores the contents of the table.

This little sortie into the side chamber has benefited the whole 
party, and her exploration means each of her team members regain 1 hit point. She herself regains 2. (See Table of Food in the rules under Pick Ups).

Meanwhile, Red opens the door on the right, moves down the 
tunnel a little way, explores a crate of apples (restoring 1 hit), then carries on moving and picks up a treasure pile (25 Gold) sitting in a dark corner.

Sir Crispin quickly finishes off the lone skeletal guard, and 
suddenly the area is clear of any immediate danger.

I casually observe that Tiffany`s heroes are doing quite well for 
themselves, and Hillary secretly tells me she has decided to stop being lenient on her (her first ever game) as she whoops and capers with joy and excitement. From here on in, Hillary is going to be checking for Random Monsters every move. Tiffany`s heroes have had it real easy up `til now; but that’s gonna change – rapidly! Evil grin.

The First Area is finally cleared of all danger - for now.

 Move 10

The Draken Master wins Initiative. She rolls for random spawning (wandering monsters) and throw 5, 6, and 6. WOoohahahha! She gets to spawn two dice full of critters. Checking on the Random Spawn Table, she throws two dice again and ends up spawning a two man Skeleton Patrol and a couple of Vicious Grubs– oooh lovely.

But then… suddenly she realizes that the heroes have a clear line of sight to almost every square on the board, and she is gutted to find she can only drop one monster on the four pesky wimpy heroes – from the well (only one monster may spawn from a well on any given move). Sadly and extremely reluctantly, she is forced to disregard the remaining monsters. She picks the toughest, and a Vicious Grub is placed on the dungeon terrain.

A worm like monstrosity rushes forward on multiple tiny legs, and engages Sir Crispin. The Vicious Grub growls hungrily, and belches a foul noxious stench into the air from its open cavernous maw.

Sola can do nothing to help and watches in dismay as she sees 
her beloved friend take on the monstrous creature single handed.

Sir Crispin thrusts the sharp point of his mighty sword into the fleshy underbelly of the monster as it rears up to engulf him – more as an act of defence than as a serious attack. But the hero’s weapon connects and the Giant Grub is dealt a hit. The Grub’s fangs glance harmlessly off the brave knight`s thick leather armour.

Move 11:

The Draken Master maintains control of the game and the Vicious Grub bites down hard on Sir Crispin. This time the attack is good and hero receives 2 hits. But in mad desperation, the hero swings deep and low – felling the fiendish dungeon dweller like a tree. But the monster has done his job well, and from now on Sir Crispin has 2 Poison Counters to deal with at the beginning of each move. A note of it is scribbled down on paper.

Hillary throws for random spawned monsters, but nothing shows up this move.

Moves 12, 13, & 14.

The Heroes win the Initiative (every time) for the next few moves and push forward carefully. The Dwarf moves up to (and activates) a teleporter, then carries on towards the main double doors ahead.

Sola, Sir Crispin and Red join the Dwarf, and take up positions behind her; she prepares to activate listen when the time is right to enter the new dungeon section.

Over the last few moves, Sir Crispin has managed to fight off the effects of one Poison Token (which is removed from play), but suffers 1 Poison hit from the second Poison Counter. However, the majority of his wounds are fully healed due to a Health Potion he found lying in a dark corner of the passage.

Move 15 & 16:

When the team is ready, Sola opens the doors ahead and reveals a new area of the dungeon.

The ceiling slopes upwards to the east here, seemingly carved out of the rock with some enormous hammer and chisel. Chunks of stone litter the floor, and heavy footsteps echo from the direction of the north passage.

Through the opened door, a whole host of monsters awaits the party, but the glint of gold and other treasure is also apparent.

Move 17:

The heroes win the Initiative and prepare to engage the enemy. Red moves out of the way to allow Sola a clear blast with her flame staff magic. The resulting Multi Shot smashes both
Skeleton guards (who stand blocking the doorway)

into small splinters of bone. Sir Crispin charges back down the hall 
in the direction everyone has just come from and engages a recently spawned Orc. He takes its head off with a single clean sweep of his sword. Red moves obliquely into the room (behind the door) and secures a Health Potion he has spotted… handy for using later on.

Move 18:

The heroes maintain initiative and continue to cut the enemy apart, a piece at a time. Sola, Red, and the Dwarf move in and slaughter a giant Corpse Crawler (sometimes affectionately known as "Carrot Monsters") at close range, but the beast is amazingly fast, and manages to score 2 hits on Red and 1 on the Dwarf before the heroes plunge the animal back into the abyss. Fortunately, the hits fail to poison the heroes.

Sir Crispin temporarily takes up the rear, covering the party from surprise attacks… random spawns coming at them from behind is going to be a major problem to the party the further they wander into the complex.

Move 19:

Initiative swings back to the Draken Master. Sir Crispin staggers slightly but remains on his feet as he succumbs to another poison wound. That Poison Counter is really taking its toll on this valiant hero.

Moves 20 & 21:

Fate is with the heroes once more (although Sir Crispin suffers yet another poison wound as the venom courses through his veins). The heroes deal with a second Corpse Crawler, chopping it down with ease, but these beasts are pretty deadly themselves, and Sola and the Dwarf each suffer another hit from an Acid Attack. The digestive bile of these creatures is pretty lethal at close range.

Only a few monsters remain alive in this area to face the heroes, and things are suddenly looking pretty good for them; although three of the party have suffered 3 hits each. Red is the luckiest, for he still has an unused Health Potion in his possession.

Sola and the Dwarf charge the last remaining enemy, an Orc, while Red moves up to a treasure chest square and successfully opens the box without mishap. He finds a poison antidote and looks towards Sir Crispin with sudden hope in his eyes. Sir Crispin closes the door behind him, and woozily walks towards Red.

In melee, the Orc lets out a yelp as he is smitten by the Dwarf`s axe, and falls dead to the floor… cloven neatly in two.

Move 22:

Draken Master Hillary smiles wickedly and throws the random spawn dice… but fails to produce even a single monster – aaaagh! But she is still smiling. She has another ace up her sleeve. Suddenly! A large and nasty looking Ogre at the end of the hall thunders forward with an almighty roar, and Charge Attacks Sola and the Dwarf.

Both heroes take a hit apiece. 

           "They have an Ogre"

But in the melee phase, amazingly the heroes manage to kill the hulking beast in a single round of combat. But in his death throes the Ogre smashed down with his huge mace, and Sola lies in a bleeding mess on the ground… she is slain.

But things aren’t looking good for the Draken Master either, and 
suddenly it seems like the heroes might actually survive this first leg of the adventure.

Move 23:

Sir Crispin finally shrugs off the last effects of the toxin (he didn`t 
need the antidote after all), though that poisonous attack has cost him 3 hits from the powerful toxin… wow, those critters really pack a punch.

Red drinks his healing potion, but the bottle must be old and its contents weakened with age, and he only recovers 1 of his 6 wounds (he rolled 1 on the D6 – very unlucky).

Sola re-spawns at the second teleporter, and the Draken Master 
scores his first Victory point of the game. Once again the dungeon is temporarily clear of monsters.

Suddenly! (Move 24) A Grub crawls out of the mud filled well pit behind the heroes, and slithers towards the newly spawned Sola. But the witch holds her ground bravely and smashes her sword into the creature’s body, smiting it dead with an amazing display of combat prowess. The Grub, meanwhile, fails to find a weakness in the Witches defences - and dies unfulfilled.

Moves 25, 26 & 27: More abominations spawn from the well pit 
(now a deep chasm in the ground). Four Orcs move in on Sola, but she casts Multi Shot and fries one creature… then makes a dash for the far door. She sees the Dwarf (who has moved back to aid her) standing vigil in the doorway, ready to aid her friend should she fail to outdistance the monsters.

Meanwhile, Sir Crispin and Red push deeper into the dungeon. 

Red activates a third teleporter as he moves over it. The Orcs catch Sola as she hurries for the safety of the door. One of them rakes at her back, causing 1 hit. In return the heroine slays another of the monsters.

Move 28, 29 & 30: The Dwarf moves to join her friend in melee 
against the Orcs.

Blows are exchanged, the remaining Orcs fall dead, and the Dwarf takes her first hit. (Sola also receives her second hit since her re-spawning). Meanwhile the `boys` press forward, exploring as they go. Sir Crispin picks up a gold stack

(which contains a key to an as yet undiscovered door)… and prepares to open a treasure chest at the end of the long corridor. Red picks up a Health Potion, and is desperately hoping his friends win the next Initiative phase so that he can drink the contents of the bottle during the following Mover`s Action Phase. But luck fails the heroes, and a Vampire and a Deadly Pudding spawn and crawl their way towards the girls. Paula (as Draken Master) chooses this moment to spring her main surprise on the heroes… and opens a secret chamber (near the girls) containing a whole formation of skeleton Warriors.

A Multi Shot from Sola slays the Vampire and wounds the

*Hillary spawned the Pudding too far away from the heroes to be
 properly effective. I think she forgot its deadly Underfoot Attack ability, which means the creature could have burst up through the ground… literally spawning at the heroes feet.

Move 31: A volley from the skeleton patrol inflicts 2 more hits on 
Sola, and then the Deadly Pudding squeezes past the skeletons and slides towards the two girls.

Move 32: The heroes win Initiative for the move… barely.

An AMAZING Multi Shot from Sola kills not only the Pudding, but sends the two skeleton bowmen to their fate as well – wow, nice move!

Red drinks the Health Potion and fully recovers all his lost hits. Sir Crispin safely opens the treasure chest without setting off any traps, and finds 100 gold inside.

Moves 33 & 34: Another Pudding spawns close by the girls… an Orc also appears from the shadows. Another great Multi Shot sets the Pudding on fire, and it tumbles lifeless back down the hole it sprung from.

However, the Orc is unperturbed and charges towards the heroines standing guard at the door - but Sola is on a roll and fries the Orc with yet another well aimed blast from her flaming staff.

At this stage in the game the situation is this:

all the revealed dungeon so far is cleared of monsters and fully explored. Sir Crispin has received 3 hits, Sola now has 4 of her own. Red and the Dwarf have suffered 1 hit apiece … and the Draken Master has already scored 1 victory point.

There don’t seem to be any more Health Potions lying around at the moment, and the heroes are reduced quite considerably in health, and without spare Potions, they are in danger of losing more of their number very soon if they are not extremely careful.

The Girls are trying desperately to get back to the boys, but are 
being flooded with an almost nonstop menagerie of monsters which are keeping them holed up by the east door. The boys are eager to press on, but weakened by the absence of the two female warriors, they are fearful of pushing open any more doors and potentially opening up a whole new can of worms.

(End of first days play).

This game session took place and was written long ago. But I think I will continue it (on my own) sometime soon. I don`t know about you, but I want to know what happens to this intrepid group of adventurers.

Will they find the giant and slay him. Will they even survive the
 dungeon... hmmm maybe one day, we shall see?

That 28mm wall section in my hand comes up to about the waist on a normal 28mm soldier. This shows just how tiny these 10mm guys really are... and I have aver 600 of these painted lol, with easily that many again still to paint one day (but they`re real dead easy and fast to paint).

Article by Steve


  1. I bought a starter set of this at warfare and the booster packs. it was too good to miss and i have had my eye on it for a very long time and it was the highlight of the show for me. it contains everything, heroes, lots of monsters, a full set of rules, and perhaps the real cool factor is the intricate modular resin dungeon and all the furniture and doors, tables and chairs, plinth and crystal ball, weapon racks, fire grates, tunnels, a well, trap doors, iron grills, magic portal gate, spiral staircase, and lots more. I think you invented this boxed game Steve, is that right. its amazing and you get so much in the box, and the add on packs add even ore variety, more game options, more rules and complete adventure modules as well. i can`t believe how good it is, and Leon speaks very highly of you. before i knew it i had spent most my money for the day on this game and came away breathless and very excited. painting it is very easy after painting the bigger 28mm things, but a tiny bit fiddly, but very enjoyable and extremely quick (can paint six orcs and six goblins in a couple of hours).

    this has geared me up to finish everything in 10mm and is a nice break from painting german infantry for bolt action. i have now played my first couple of game of Dungeon World and am very happy how well it plays, it even plays solo and has full rules for doing this properly. i also spotted that you completely wrote the rules as well, you do everything i think and are amazing, yet you dont ever tell us all the things you can do.

    this is my favourite article.

    1. Guilty as charged lol, yeah this is one of mine but from loooong ago, and Leon/Pendraken did some amazingly cool ideas with the game (like make it into a complete starter box set then making lots of expansion sets complete with themed heroes and monster miniatures.. and then getting me to write complete dungeon mini modules for each new set release. Aah fun times.

      Maybe one day I`ll go back to being forum mod for them over there, but I just dont ever seem to have the time any more for lots of things I`d like to do :-)) Still its nice to have dreams - and be wanted **chuckles**

  2. I don't know if I'm going back here, very tempting to replay RPGs when we read, when we see such beautiful things ...but so little time now to play the worm btw...and the walls...also the scenery...the skeletton, cute the skeletton...oh, nothing better than a group of adventurers...ok, ok, I'll come back, so tempting...GREAT POST!

    1. oh wow cool, I never knew you were once a role player Phil (I always took you for a historical gamer only hehe). The skeleton ARE cute aren`t they, hehe.. not sure why exactly at this scale: I desperately need to go back and repaint them actually, they`re far too white and solid looking (bad painting uuugh!!).

      hehehe, tempted are we Phil lol? Well, it IS a tempting theme in this diminutive scale I do admit ^^

  3. Always amazed me why you stopped playing this, you always looked like you were having such fun and I know we all did as well. I think it was the way a whole evenings rpg session could fit onto the playing space of a cheese board, or a tea tray. I know you were working on a space version with Leon as well (`not` aliens and predators) what ever happened to that idea anyway?

    Lovely nostalgic post love, makes me want to play it again.

    1. yeah I know, was fun wasnt it, and we never quite got over that Oooh and Awwww "Wow its so small" factor did we, which always made us smile.... in a good way. Meh, maybe one day I will get right back into it, perhaps relive the "Ravenloft" game using just 10mm, yeah. Or perhaps "Worlds Largest Dungeon"?

      No you`re not wrong Hils, he sci fi game was in the pipe line: rules were finished and everything but Leon got real busy (and he got married that same year) and somehow the idea just never went any further, which is no biggie, as I got real busy too with FFG then with Impact Miniatures at the time.

  4. Another great article Steve, great looking scenery and models, and If you had your hand in the rules they are well worth playing I'm sure. The scenario looks a lot of fun and by the sounds of it the sci-fi version would have been good to

  5. Thanks Dave mate. Yeah the size makes everything tend to look really `epic` at 10mm, and especially works when you got a dungeon fulled with furnishing and all the extra bits of trimming. Makes an rpg or a skirmish game come alive in the most extraordinary intense way. As for the sci-fi game, well, that`s still going begging (as it was never actually handed over to anyone and copyright was never `purchased off me` by anyone hehe. So one day it may yet see the light of day in another guise).

    1. Is that before or after the secret SSSHHH don't mention or the super secret, I could tell you but would have to erase your entire family line ! LOL

    2. Shhhh its confidentual *big wink*

      hmmmmm weeeeell...... of course, the rules just m-i-g-h-t be useful to us one day, for our next project after Salute, but that confid..*^/@##*

  6. Now, this particular article (and the previous one) might be taken as an encouragement to look at an alternative scale or genre...but it's not. Both articles are an encouragement to look at your existimg collections, see what you've got and USE it! Rather than immediately jumping online and looking at new stuff, I started thinking about what I do own and what I can do with it. Which I think was the point of this article, right Stevie?

  7. Absolutely spot on, old boy! The title could in fact have been "Stop, Check and Rejoice!"

    Stop! and take a look at what you already own, before buying new..just `cos its available and you got the money.

    Check! Look what your real motive in needing something new really is. Boredom, the joy of something new to get excited about, the thrill of opening presents (if only to yourself? Very often this can be stopped in its tracks by making yourself fall in love with something you already possess, but which you have completely dismissed or forgotten you have. Juut find a way to enthuse about it all over again, and Bingo! You just saved yourself another small fortune.... maybe give that money you just saved to a worthy charity or something?

    Rejoice! Feel proud of yourself for your ability, and enjoy your hobby in safe satisfaction, knowing you have curbed your addiction and once again found your way to appreciative hobbying.

  8. I'd go one step further and suggest that everyone takes out their entire collection and looks at what they actually own. Then, looking at the games they have and the genres their collection covers, make a decision regarding whether these figures are ever going to be played with again.

    If not, either sell that part of their collection, thus generating funds for what they DO want to play or give them away to someone who DOES want to play that game or genre. The main purpose of accumulating all these figures and rules systems is to play games with them. You may have built an awesome army of whatever, but if they are never fielded in battle, what's the point?

    Get those space marines out of their box and prevent an incursion of chaos...or zombies...or dinosaurs. Time to not only think outside the box, but to empty the box and pit your forces against whatever you please.

  9. I'm always surprised that "Pendraken" 10mm Dungeon and their excellent range of minis hasn't ever really taken off. It allows for such huge dungeon crawls/rpg etc and yet doesn't seem to be something which sells especially well - at least in my eyes.

    Whatever, this posting clearly shows off all of 10mm d&d's advantages, Steve, and makes for a cracking read - as some have already said, its also a bit tempting to dig out my dungeon etc and get painting :-)

    1. Yeah, Pendraken are possibly THE biggest seller of 10mm in the world, but their dungeon/fantasy range is hardly touched by most gamers, which is really strange and I can`t work out why exactly; especially as the range is vast, and the dungeon itself (and all those trimmings) is simply incredible.

      I`m glad you enjoyed the read Simon, and it maybe tempted you to get your dungeon things out... wow I didnt know you had any Pendraken 10mm fantasy stuff - isnt it cool? I always wanted to recreate Moria and was well on my way when I rather stupidly allowed myself to get sidetracked with the Zulu Wars. I has enough dungeon to cover the kitchen table or my games room table tennis top, but sadly I never finished the project. I got all the figures and everything, but... I dunno. Maybe this post will spark the flame and ignite the fire and get me to go back to it fully: perhaps another New Years project, huh?

  10. I have to say, this one temps me. It temps me sorely and my resolve is crumbling by the hour. I even went and poured over the Pendraken website and my mouth an open `O` at the price, which is pittance for a complete box set of this pleasure magnitude. But that`s not even it, its the sheer wow factor of the thing. I mean its so SMALL, and yet brings a smile to my face (I see why it did the same with your playing group Steve) because it makes you go "this is just so neat." I would never really have thought of this small scale for fantasy reading this. For the same reason your Napoleonic Travel Battle article caught my eye with equal enthusiasm, as you might recall. I think I`m in on this one: I always was a sucker for a good `all in a box`, hobby in one. Fits my wallet, fits my psyche, and fits my coffee tray when I`m away on business and want a relaxing game with my son or travel companion.

    1. Happy gaming mate. If you were in the area I`d happily give you enough spares to make up an entire starter dungeon, but I know you, you`re like me, you will want a brand spanking new, untouched by human hands, sealed box of goodness ALL for yourself, wont ya hahaha?

    2. You have me pegged. I`m all for the nice new cellophane wrap experience (I`m sad, I even enjoy the crisp scent of a newly opened box, mmmmmmmmmm). But thanks chum ^^

  11. I bought one of these dungeon starter sets years ago, on a whim at a game trade show. It still sits unopened in its box awaiting my undivided attention; which may just happen this coming Yule Tide festive season. Its about time I broached the subject and made a start on a new subject. And Dave makes a valuable point. I could carry this with me on work travels, what an absolutely stimulating thought. That`s it, I know now what I will be doing this December holidays in my spare time, I will be focused on painting my very own dungeon set replete with little monsters and heroes and resin dungeon tiles. Thanks Mr Stevie, I would not have thought of it if I hadn`t see this, and Thanks Dave for making that cool connection for me.

    1. Sounds like a plan Tar` and a good one at that. Its light enough to carry with you and surprisingly, the white box it comes in is amazingly sturdy and would withstand a lot of travel use. The box reminds me of the first ever ODD original "White Box edition" of D&D, back in 74 hehe. Happy hobbying hun x

    2. Lots for me to do then I think. Lets see, lots of tiny men and monsters and a full resin pack of dungeon tiles, fifty (or is that one hundred?) pristinely painted, dry brushed and highlighted cobble bases from WTW.. for your VBCW guys to stand up on, and that`s before I even get to Jez`s crossover Victoriana Yule Tide mini special `tale of the unexpected.` Hmmmm busy little me.

    3. Yeppers, I cant even mount my finished minis until you finish those bases T girl.

      Um..... no pressure, like.

      Mind you, I still haven`t even got the bases yet, until Dave S posts them and he only just got given my order like, an hour ago hahaha.

    4. Already on it, will try and work y normal miracles for you ! LOL

  12. Dave, friend, are indeed, a saint and a miracle worker. Wouldn't have rushed you as I know you are massively busy with orders right now, and no doubt casting away like mad every spare moment you have (I can almost feel the whip lashes on the backs of your team of trusty elf like workers), so I am INCREDIBLY grateful for your expedient work ethic. Cheers mate :-)))

    I am doubly grateful as I want to cover the VBCW in some considerable detail from now on (including the initial painting, basing, etc... before it even gets to the table and some actual gaming): and one tiny wee snag.... LOL... I can`t do much until the figures themselves are based hehehe and as I got the mad idea YOUR bases are by far the best and the ones I want to use, I`m sort of hands tied right now *grins sheepishly*.

    1. then magic I will do for you mate ! should have them posted by the end of the week

    2. You are a hero mate, a solid 24 carrot gold hero.

  13. With your VBCW, do you plan to cover the Irish problem, and Irish involvement and German sympathies during the 30`s and 40`s? That would make for very interesting play coverage: and living in Ireland itself as you do, would add a very personal edge, right?

    1. Interesting question. It`s VERY much on my mind to go the Irish route, yes. See, VBCW miniatures would quadruple up nicely for Spanish Civi War, the fictitious Very British Civil War of course, World War Two Operation Sealion (early war), but should also work perfectly well for partisan Polish, French, Norwegian or even Finnish style games. So lots of potential variety there. But as you aptly point out T, would almost be a shame not to cover Ireland`s involvement in the VBCW.

    2. especially as we are currently looking at a house on an island (40 minutes ferry ride) off the mainland coast, as our`potential` new home. So would be very nice to immerse in a sort of "what if" WWII Channel Islands caper, only off the coast of Ireland (smuggling, U-Boats, local intrigue, spies, little skirmishes like "The Battle of Brewery Lane" and "Bayonet Rush at Pirate Bay" hehe. He`s even got me interested in all this now: I never could resist a bit of imagi-nation gaming.

  14. I love this! All that gaming goodness that fits in a space that literally everyone can find, rather than relying on an 8’x4’ gaming table. Great article Steve, sadly my “little folk” collection is only 40k so dungeon crawling is out BUT there are so many other possibilities for them....

  15. wooohoooo Andy mate. Really glad you liked the post. Yeah, 10mm fantasy has a certain appeal, and space wise scores high too, especially for solo play... is rather darn addictive, as it allows for some truly epic campaign play.

    meh, 10mm, 15mm, even 20mm would work in this setting I think, maybe?

  16. I'd promised myself I wouldn't do it, but as I'm as curious as a bagfull of cats, I caved and went on to the Pendraken site. And that's when I saw two words I never expected to be seen together - Samurai Apes.

    And now I want some.

    Curse you, Gilbert!

  17. Regardless of whether your need one room changed or are taking a gander at applying new shading to every one of the dividers in your home, a gifted painter can help. Inspect a couple of different reasons why you'd need to consider employing a star. Simply check out these wall painters [ wall painters in Hyderabad ]. In case you're burnt out on scrape marks, oily fingerprints around light switches or boring dividers, you may need to take some time and do some composition. Thusly, you can have a fresher-looking room and not any more revolting stains or other unattractive stamps on your divider. The best part is that a decent expert will set aside the opportunity to put down drop materials, expel installations and apply tape if necessary to guarantee you get the most ideal outcomes.