"Run For the Hills!"
(or How The Goblins Rose in Height)
A Flintloque Scenario by Gavin Syme
Al-Garvey Goblins and Ferach Elves clash over a disputed hill on the border between Al-Garvey and Catalucia.
'Gobwardo you say de Elvas will a try to keep us off de hill?'
Major Gobge Bagao stroked the rim of his wide bireme as he asked his aide yet again about the groups of blue coated Elves he could see moving about high on the facing slope of the Ruddihio hill. As he sat on his riding Dodo the animal shifted under him, it could smell trouble and like all its kind could not decide whither to run or to charge in beak snapping. Just in front of the major were three ranks of green skinned Goblin soldiers, muskets on the shoulders of their white tunics, awaiting the command to attack the hill. It would be so glorious for the newly trained army to be able to prove to the Albion Orcs that they could fight and win alone as well as with the redcoats.
'Sim, it is their intention to throw us a down if we a climb up.'
The major's aide spoke slowly and with great respect for his superior. Taking the hill would be glorious but it would also be hot and bloody work at the barrel of a musket and the tip of a bayonet. Perhaps they should wait for the leading elements of the 50th Foote to arrive. The Orcs would get the largest grasp of any glory but fewer of the Goblins would die in the ascent.
'Major, perhaps we shouda wait for the Orcs. They ave a lot more history of dis kind of fighting than a we do. Also they are a fine red shield for us to a follow up the Ruddihio.'
Bagao considered this. It was sound advice and though the Regent had ordered his troops to take the hills and prove their mettle it would surely not be too cowardly for him to wait for the snarling and crude Orcs to lead the charge for the summit. But then, then he would lose the glory. What to do.
Far off up the slope two puffs of grey smoke followed by dry cracks announced that the Elves were trying their luck at hitting the Al-Garvey soldiers even at such an extreme distance. A moment later one of the Goblins in the front rank of the assembled infantry company shrieked as a spent lead ball struck his chest. It did him little harm but it sent a ruffle of disturbance through the ranks. They would have to choose soon. The 50th Foote were at least two hours away and remaining where they were exposed them to musketry even it was only from spent balls that did little more than cause an itch and bruise to those struck.
With his thoughts composed Major Bagao was about to order his goblins to about face and march another two hundred yards back into the shelter of nearby cork trees when there was a much larger puff of powder smoke from the top of the Ruddihio hill followed an instant later by a bang. That was a cannon he realised and then a roundshotte thumped through a whole file of his soldiers and reduced three of them to splattered bits of meat. Another two screamed at lost limbs from the splinters of stock and barrel of an impacted musket which had exploded. It could only be a four pound ball at the most but it was still a problem that changed the equation of this potential fight.
'Sim, on the top there, a cannon. She is served by...no...it cannot be... the Legion. She is served by Al-Garveyians!
Traitors. Damn traitors to the Queen, to the Regent and to all those of Al-Garvey who wish to be free from tyranny. That changed everything. Now it was about honour. The major lifted his bicorne above his head, his hair falling loose about his shoulders and yelled at his troops.
'Forward! Get those bastardos off our beloved Ruddihio!'
Map and Setup
This scenario takes place on the slope of a steep and high hill on the borders between Al-Garvey and Catalucia. See the map below for the scenario to set up your terrain.
The hill dominates the ground and your table should be around four feet square. The hill is of four levels each should be several centimetres thick. There are many groups of small trees and also on the third and fourth levels of the hill there are outcroppings of rocks and boulders. The ground on the whole is smooth grassland. Set up your forces inside the marked areas in a disposition and facing of your choosing according to their numbers on the map. Number one is the 3rd Al-Garvey Foote, number two is the 83eme Line Infantry, number three is the 83eme Voltiguer skirmishers and number four is the Al-Garvey Legion gunners and their cannon. No character should be more than 5cm from the rest of their own section.
Scenario Objectives and Forces
Here are the scenario objectives for each side in this Flintloque 3rd Edition scenario.
3rd Al-Garvey Regiment of Foote (Grand Alliance)
For the glory of your homeland and to show your allies that Goblins can make fine soldiers you must ascend the hill and drive off not only the despised Elves but those traitors to your own kind who have joined their ranks.
Create a Section of twenty four characters using the creation rules in 5025 War in Catalucia. They must be Goblins troop type Regular armed with Regency Muskets. One character must be section leader, an officer, armed with a sword and you must have a sergeant armed with sword, a standard bearer, and a musician equipped as suits them. Experience Levels are one Veteran Character, three Experienced Characters, ten Average Characters and ten Raw Characters. You may choose skills, traits and flaws as per the rules. See 5025.
1st Al-Garvey Legion (Ferach Empire)
You are proud that you sided with the Elves and now with your training as gunners you command a 2lb Company Gun and are determined to use it to sweep away the backward Goblins who seek to prevent Al-Garvey joining the Empire. Hold the Hill.
Create a Section of two characters using the creation rules in 5025 War in Catalucia and 5027 Grapeshotte. They must be Goblins troop type Gunner armed with Large Improvised Weapons (Artillery Implements) and a single cannon. One character must be section leader. Experience Levels are two Average Characters. You may choose skills, traits and flaws as per the rules. They are the crew for a 2lb Company Gun, a cannon as detailed on page 27 of Grapeshotte. See 5025 and 5027.
83eme Regt de Ligne Voltiguers (Ferach Empire)
It is your task as skirmishers to meet the Goblins as they try to climb the hill and to try and break them up and harass them while your fellows deliver the coup de grace to them. Hold the Hill.
Create a Section of ten characters using the creation rules in 5025 War in Catalucia. They must be Ferach Elves troop type Light Infantry armed with Ferach Muskets and Bayonets. One character must be section leader, an officer, armed with a sword and or pistol and you can choose if you wish to have a sergeant, standard bearer, musician equipped as suits them if you wish. Experience Levels are one Experience Character, four Average Characters and five Raw Characters. You may choose skills, traits and flaws as per the rules. See 5025.
83eme Regt de Ligne (Ferach Empire)
If you can hold this hill until the rest of the Armee arrives then you will most likely gain a promotion. If not then your death will be a fitting reward for failure. Hold the Hill.
Create a Section of ten characters using the creation rules in 5025 War in Catalucia. They must be Ferach Elves troop type Regular armed with Ferach Muskets and Bayonets. One character must be section leader, an officer, armed with a sword and or pistol and you can choose if you wish to have a sergeant, standard bearer, musician equipped as suits them if you wish. Experience Levels are one Experience Character, five Average Characters and four Raw Characters. You may choose skills, traits and flaws as per the rules. See 5025.
There is no turn limit in this scenario so play will continue until one side meets its victory conditions or suffers the total shame of outright defeat by loosing all its characters in battle!
The conditions of victory are pretty much the same for both sides in this scenario is a stand up fight. The Grand Alliance player will win by managing to drive all enemies off the hill and the gaming table or killing them all; the goal is to get your characters onto the top level of the hill and to silence the cannon before all your troops are routed or shot dead. The Ferach Empire player will win by holding the top level of the hill by the point all enemy characters are dead or have fled the gaming table. There is no draw in this scenario.
This scenario features some special rules which take presidency over the normal rules when in effect. Each is detailed and if you desire you can apply them where desired in your own scenarios elsewhere.
Steep Hill: It is a long way to the top of the hill and this can prove a problem when you have little legs like those of the Goblins. Movement by the Goblins up the hill counts as movement through DIFFICULT TERRAIN while movement down the hill or crabbing across it counts as CLEAR TERRAIN. This does not affect any Elf character but does apply to the Legion gunners should they be foolish enough to leave their gun!
Determined Goblins: The 3rd Al-Garvey Regiment of Foote are determined to show off their martial skill by taking this hill so they will try extra hard to do so. This means that the first TWO characters killed in their section will remain on the field of battle where they fell and then after one turn inactive will come back to life with no injuries and be free to rejoin their comrades marching up the hill. Bullet holes...no problem to us!
Distrust Among Allies: The Ferach allied Al-Garvey Legion is filled with Goblins who have either turned their back upon their homeland or who believe that their country would be much better off rid of its mad queen and under enlightened Elvish rule. Either way even the Elves view them with suspicion. If the cannon being manned by the Legion fires and its projectiles pass within 5cm of an Elf character on its flight path to the target then that Elf will be really annoyed. Thinking the Goblins were aiming for him the offended Elf (or Elves if more than one) must fire any loaded firelock they have at the nearest Goblin gunner regardless of range or chance to hit; the weapon must discharge. They will do this once per offending artillery shot and if they do not have a firelock then they simply shout some rather rude words at the Goblins.
This scenario can be played perfectly well with one player. If you choose to do so then refer to the Solo Play rules in any Flintloque Game Book and give the solo side to the Ferach Empire. The Ferach sections will be Motivation Defensive and will have a tendency to fire, hold position and then retreat. The cannon will not move its position though it will pivot to aim. However once the first Goblins reach the forth level of the hill, the summit, change the motivation for the Ferach to Motivation Aggressive for the rest of the game. They do not want to lose the summit!
Scenario Requirements for Play
This scenario requires you to have the following items of wargaming equipment. A copy of 5025 Flintloque 3rd Edition – War in Catalucia and a copy of 5027 Grapeshotte for the artillery rules and statistics. A few sets of D10 or Percentile Dice, Section Rosters, Measuring device in centimetres and suitable terrain to assemble as the map shows. Miniatures can be found in the World of Valon range at www.alternative-armies.com and we suggest the following. For the Grand Alliance code 53502 Goblin Line, for the Al-Garvey Legion gunners elements of code 53508 Goblin Artillery Crew, the cannon from 59517 Grasshopper Company Gun, 83eme Voltiguers from 51038 & 51041 and finally for the 83eme Line code 51504 Elf Line Infantry plus command that suits. Search by code on the website and feel free to substitute appropriate miniatures from your own Flintloque collection.
The idea for the scenario is a composite that would work well with any nation on Valon and indeed has done with the Ratmen of Joccia climbing an equally steep hill in order to overcome a dug in battery of Nepolise Todoroni mortars back in 2010. Where did it come from... well principally from a scene in the superb 'Sharpes Escape' novel by Bernard Cornwell. It is perfectly possible for the Goblins to win though the Elves and Legion forces have more range and firepower. A 2lb cannon is not very powerful and it must be careful not to hit its own troops. Indeed the Elves cannot stand once the Goblins get in range for a volley from ten to twenty muskets and will be pushed up the slope to re-group. So take the hill!
This article was written exclusively for Orcs in the Webbe and was first published on the 5th December 2012 as part of it's 2012 Advent Calendar.