Medieval Skirmish Wargames Rules

I have been working on writing some medieval skirmish wargames rules recently. Here’s a first draft that I’m currently playtesting. I have included some sample stat blocks at the end of the rules. Would be great to get any feedback if you want to leave a comment at the end of the post.

Medieval Skirmish Wargames Rules

Principles 

Small scale skirmish – up to a dozen figures a side  

High to late medieval setting.  

Each figure has a stat line: 

  • Initiative 
  • Move 
  • Shoot Skill – if applicable 
  • Melee Skill 
  • Weapon properties 
  • Bravery  
  • Special Abilities 

Tokens needed for Light and Serious Wounds. Ideally have casualty figures for casualties!  

Turn Sequence 

  1. Activations
  2. Take Actions 
  3. Resolve Bravery rolls 
  4. Determine if a Winner 

Activations 

Two sets of different coloured dice – in a bag. One dice per figure.  

Dice drawn to determine which side goes next. Then dice thrown to determine number of actions – use as a d3. Some figures may have +1 or -1 initiative and be able to take more actions. Never below 1.  

Actions are: 

Move – if want to run need two or more Move actions.  

Fight – can fight twice if have enough actions.  

Shoot – again can shoot more if have more actions. 

Leaders/specials – can do things like rally/challenge other knights, pray etc.  

After Activation – put the dice next to them to indicate moved.  

Move 

Standard 6” etc  – more detail tbc here! 

Shooting 

Simple to hit roll. Normally 3+ unless opponent has moved twice in the turn.  

Melee 

Opposed Roll – d6 + Fighting Skill 

Average Soldier would be +1 

Loser – pushed back. 

If Loser rolls a natural 1 – they slip or trip and lie prone – can get up in their turn but at risk if attacked before then. 

Winner can follow-up or use it as opportunity to disengage – can’t otherwise without risk.  

If Winner rolls a modified 6 or more then loser takes damage.  

Damage 

Hit Location! 

1: Head 

2-3: arms 

4-5: body 

6: legs 

If roll is 7+ to hit then can specify location.  

If armoured on that location – defee 

Mail or brigandine etc – 5+ savnder gets to make a save – weapon modifies that. If not then roll 1d6. 

Plate or enclosed helm: 4+ save 

Heavy weapon – e.g. halberd etc: -1 to save. Dagger: +1 to save etc. More granular than this for different weapon types.  

Some weapons might add to initiative for instance as well. Factor these into stat lines. Or is it better to have normal stat line and then have to add in weapons factors – as reminds player that weapons are contributing to their rolls etc?  

1-3 – light wound (can carry on, but can only do max of two activations) 

4-5 serious wound (max of one activation and penalties to rolls etc).  

6 – dead. 

Need tokens for wounds.  

Bravery 

If leader wounded or someone else killed in that turn – then test for bravery for each person. Modifier of +1 per killed person in total. 

2d6 under or equal to Bravery.  

If failed then flee token and person can only spend activations running away until rallied by leader.  

Medieval Skirmish Wargames Rules – Stats

Man-at-Arms 

Initiative Move Shoot Skill Melee Skill Bravery 
0 5” 0 +2 8 

Special Abilities: 

Aimed blow Can +1 or -1 when selecting hit location.  

Weapon properties: 

Two-handed weapon: +1 to Damage roll 

 

Foot Sergeant 

Initiative Move Shoot Skill Melee Skill Bravery 
0 6” 0 +1 7 

Special Abilities: 

 

Weapon properties: 

Long Spear – can attack when 1” away – if so -1 Melee Skill, but opponent cannot hurt wielder.  

Glaive/bill – two-handed. 

 

Archer 

Initiative Move Shoot Skill Melee Skill Bravery 
0 6” +1 0 7 

Special Abilities: 

Mallets and poignards. If outnumber a man-at-arms get a +1 to melee skill.  

Weapon properties: 

Longbow. Fast shooting. Can use all activations in a turn to shoot.  

If Elite archer – +1 Initiative – so possibility of 4 shots per turn.  

 

Crossbowman 

Initiative Move Shoot Skill Melee Skill Bravery 
0 6” +1 0 7 

Special Abilities: 

Pavise – if supported by pavisier, the crossbowman is almost immune to archery -2 to hit.  

Weapon properties: 

Maximum of one shot in a Turn. Can only move and shoot if has 3+ activations.  

 

A verray, parfit, gentil knyght 

Initiative Move Shoot Skill Melee Skill Bravery 
+1 5”/10” 0 +2 9 

Special Abilities: 

Challenge: If another knight on the table can use an action to make a challenge. Other knight must accept or lose ability to rally. Both knights will only fight each other until decided. More detailed rules for the challenge.  

Rally: If within 12” can use action to rally fleeing troops. They roll on knight’s bravery to stop fleeing.  

Mounted: If mounted – 10” move. Rules for attacking horse? Horse defence?  

Weapon properties: 

If mounted, then can use Lance to charge: +1 Damage and enemy can’t attack back – like spear? Charge takes knight past their enemy?  

Dismounted – Two-handed as per Man-at-arms: +1 Damage 

Priest 

Initiative Move Shoot Skill Melee Skill Bravery 
0 6” 0 0 6 

Special Abilities: 

Pray: Add reroll  

Peace of God: Allows battle to end before too many people are hurt?  

Weapon properties: 

 

 

Wars of the Roses Strategy Battle Game rules posted

I’ve just posted up the rules that I wrote a while ago to a Wars of the Roses version of Lord of the Rings (Middle Earth) Strategy Battle Game. The rules are just the additional things that you might need like profiles, weapons and some special abilities that will add some Wars of the Roses flavour to a game of Middle Earth Strategy Battle Game.

They’re in no way complete – there’s no rules for heroes, cavalry, Irish Kerns etc, but they do include rules for some of the most typical Wars of the Roses troop types: billmen, longbow archers etc. They’re inspired by other adaptations such as Age of Trebuchet and Legends of the Middle Ages 

The rules can be downloaded in PDF here or you can read them online here.

Pelennor Fields Battle Photos

Played this game last summer, but only just got round to having a proper look at the Pelennor Fields battle photos I took at the time, and thought they would be worth posting here. Don’t ask me for an AAR (After Action Report) on the game, but we basically played the main big battle from Games Workshop’s Pelennor Fields starter set. Great fun and looked amazing! Especially the Witch King on Fell Beast – he was a real bugger to put together let me tell you – and paint – only broke a couple of times …

Morannan Orcs knocked prone by charge of the Rohirrim
Morannan Orcs knocked prone by charge of the Rohirrim
The Rohirrim cavalry advance
The Rohirrim cavalry advance
Rohan cavalryman runs away
Rohan cavalryman runs away
Witch King of Angmar vs Theoden, King of Rohan
Witch King of Angmar vs Theoden, King of Rohan
Rohan and Morder battle lines clash
Rohan and Morder battle lines clash

Testing out Terrain for 6mm WW2

I tested out some terrain I made recently for WW2 at 6mm (1/300) scale wargames. I made some basic fields out of card, clump foliage and flock and I think they look pretty good. The trees were cheap on ebay and again on  simple card base.

I also used some paper 1/300 buildings on a simple card stand – bought on Wargames Vault. The buildings look huge don’t they for a microarmor game! They’re quite nice buildings, cheap and easy to make so no complaints there. I have read that people often use 2mm or 3mm scale buildings for 6mm and I think I might go down that route in the future. I’m planning on doing 1 stand = 1 platoon rather than a squad so a smaller building imprint would make sense.

WW2 6mm terrain WW2 6mm terrain

Woodland Scenic Tree Armatures Glue Tip

A quick hobby tip that I thought I would share in case anyone else comes across the same problem. I tried my hand for the first time at making my own trees for wargaming using the Woodland Scenics Armatures and their clump foliage. I couldn’t get hold of their Hob-e-Tac glue for attaching the clump foliage, so used a tacky glue bought from Hobbycraft. Not sure about this, but I assume it was supposed to be similar. Anyway I got the clump foliage to stick to the armatures which was the first stage. Then what you are supposed to do is spray the tree with Woodland Scenics Scenic Cement (basically watered down PVA), which I did but that resulted in most of my clump foliage simply falling off straight away!

Now this might be do with the tacky glue – perhaps Hob-e-tac is amazing – although a search on the internet seems to indicate it is not. I tried some alternatives. Super glue fixed the clump foliage perfectly and strongly, but I didn’t fancy using my tiny tube of super glue on lots of trees, so I looked around for something else. I had some Bostik Contact Adhesive for making Peter Dennis’s Paper Soldiers. I tried this – you’re supposed to attach to both parts and then wait for it to dry four minutes to get a good bond. I did do that, but gluing bits of clump foliage was not ideal, so I thought why not just plonk it on the armature and see if the clump foliage will stick straightaway – and as Bob Ross would say I had a happy accident! It worked like a dream.  A really solid fix. I tried spraying the Scenic Cement on and that worked great as well – no bits of clump foliage dropping off.

Here’s a photo of two sorry trees on the right after spraying – using the Tacky glue, and on the left is the one with Bostik – looking very solid!Woodland Scenics Armatures glue

 

So the long and short of it is try Bostik Contact adhesive for sticking clump foliage to stuff!

Guthrum Mane – the Rock Giant from Bloodbath at Orcs Drift

This is such a characterful miniature – I really loved painting this one. I played the campaign recently with some friends and Guthrum did well in his first battle against the Wood Elves – but he got drunk and never appeared at Orcs Drift. With the painted figure I had a go at doing some tattoos and put a red glaze on his nose to suggest his drinking habit!

Bit better focus on this picture?

Kill Team Rogue Trader Sanistasia Minst and Elucia Vhane painting guide

Sanistasia Minst
Sanistasia Minst
Elucia Vhane – the Rogue Trader


Here are the paints I used for each miniature.

Sanistasia Minst Painting Guide

White Sleeves and Veil
  • Base: Corax White
  • Wash: Apothecary White contrast paint
  • Highlight: White Scar
Lace top and bottom of the sleeves
  • Base: Corax White
  • Wash: Drakenhof Nightshade
  • Highlight: White Scar
Plume
  • Base: Corax White
  • Shade: Hexwraith Flame
  • Highlight: White Scar
Skirt Trim
  • Base: Zandri Dust
  • Wash: Seraphim Sepia
  • Highlight: Ushabti Bone
Boots and black parts
  • Base: Abaddon Black
  • Highlight: Eshin Grey
Red Skirt
  • Base: Mephiston Red
  • Wash: Agrax Earthshade
  • Highlight: Evil Sunz Scarlet
Holster and Belt
  • Base: Dryad Bark
  • Wash: Agrax Earthshade
  • Highlight: Gorthor Brown
Silver metal
  • Base: Leadbelcher
  • Wash: Nuln Oil
  • Highlight: Stormhost silver
Gold metal
  • Base: Balthasar Gold
  • Wash: Reikland Fleshshade Gloss
  • Highlight: Stormhost silver
Skin
  • Base: Cadian Fleshtone
  • Wash: Reikland Fleshshade
  • Highlight: Kislev Flesh
Blue
  • Base: Thousand Sons Blue
  • Layer: Ahriman Blue
  • Highlight: Temple Guard Blue
Nurgling
  • Base: Zandri Dust
  • Wash: Athonian Camoshade
  • Highlight: Ogryn Camo
  • Highlight: Kislev Flesh
  • Glaze on some warts: Bloodletter Glaze
  • Tongue: Screamer Pink with a shade of Pink Horror
Base

Old Citadel sand then painted with Vallejo German Brown Black Camo, with a drybrush of Vallejo Beige Brown and Tyrant Skull. Edge of the base is Steel Legion Drab. I then added some static grass afterwards. 

Elucia Vhane Painting Guide

White Coat and white parts of test tube
  • Base: Corax White
  • Wash: Apothecary White contrast paint
  • Highlight: White Scar
Coat Trim
  • Base: Zandri Dust
  • Wash: Seraphim Sepia
  • Highlight: Ushabti Bone
Boots and black parts
  • Base: Abaddon Black
  • Highlight: Eshin Grey
Red Tube
  • Base: Mephiston Red
  • Wash: Agrax Earthshade
  • Highlight: Evil Sunz Scarlet
Holster and Belt
  • Base: Dryad Bark
  • Wash: Agrax Earthshade
  • Highlight: Gorthor Brown
Silver metal
  • Base: Leadbelcher
  • Wash: Nuln Oil
  • Highlight: Stormhost silver
Gold metal
  • Base: Balthasar Gold
  • Wash: Reikland Fleshshade Gloss
  • Highlight: Stormhost silver
Skin
  • Base: Cadian Fleshtone
  • Wash: Reikland Fleshshade
  • Highlight: Kislev Flesh
Blue (you can’t see this but on the backpack).
  • Base: Thousand Sons Blue
  • Layer: Ahriman Blue
  • Highlight: Temple Guard Blue
Base

Old Citadel sand then painted with Vallejo German Brown Black Camo, with a drybrush of Vallejo Beige Brown and Tyrant Skull. Edge of the base is Steel Legion Drab. I then added some static grass afterwards. 

 

Hundred Years War Fiction: Stand and Fight

A number of my stories take place during the Hundred Years War between England and France. I thought it might be cool to run a series of blog posts revisiting some of these. So here’s the first of that series of blog posts on Hundred Years War Fiction.

Stand and Fight: A Tale of Richard Stone

Stand and Fight

Montmal Castle, the Duchy of Aquitaine, 1374

A large French army is at the walls of Montmal castle. Bertrand, the Gascon commander of Montmal is ready to surrender despite his vow to defend castle in the name of Edward, Prince of Aquitaine and the eldest son of Edward III of England. Richard Stone, the sole representative of the English government of Aquitaine is horrified at Bertrand’s duplicity. But the French commander has a grudge against Bertrand and will under no terms accept his surrender. There is no choice for the garrison but to stand and fight.

“Stand and Fight” is a short story set during the Hundred Years War between England and France.

Some readers of my work might notice that the main character is Richard Stone, who also features in my Stonehearted series!

Stand and Fight is available at Amazon.com Amazon.co.uk other Amazon sites and Smashwords.

For a free preview of the story you can visit my product page for the book. 

Look out for more blog posts on Hundred Years War fiction soon!

Attack on the Hamlet of Hamlingden

Scenario two from the A Case of Mistaken Identity Narrative Campaign for Middle Earth Strategy Battle Game.

PDF Download: Attack on the Hamlet of Hamlingden

Attack on the Hamlet of Hamlingden 

The Orcs thinking they have tracked down the location of a Baggins send a larger party of Orcs to attack the hamlet of Hamlingden where they believe a Baggins to live – in fact it is a distant relative of Bilbo, Lobelia Sackville-Baggins.   

Forewarned Aragorn is waiting with a group of militia and has sent word to Gandalf for help. Gandalf arrives part way through the battle. 

LAYOUT 

Lobelia’s house is a hobbit hole in the hamlet of Hamlingden. The hamlet consists of one hobbit hole and a couple of cottages above ground. There are a number of vegetable gardens bordered by low fences and hedges around the hamlet that form defensive barriers. A few copses of trees can be placed around the board as well. The board is 4’ x 4’. 

Attack on Hamlingden Map

STARTING POSITIONS 

Lobelia starts just outside her hobbit hole. Aragorn and the Hobbit Militia and Hobbit Archers start anywhere within the area of the hamlet and its gardens. 

The Orcs then deploy on any board edge up to three inches in. They have had time to plan their attack and surround the hamlet.  

OBJECTIVES 

The Good player’s objective is to survive until Gandalf can get to the hamlet and cast a spell to aid their escape. Once Gandalf arrives he should make his way to the hamlet and ensure that at least Aragorn, Lobelia and half the remaining hobbits are within 6 inches of him. He can then cast an enhanced version of his Blinding Light spell, casting on 4+. If successful all Orcs on the board are blinded long enough for the Good forces to make their escape. Alternatively the Good player wins if the Evil force is defeated in the normal way, i.e. reduced to 25% plus Lobelia, Aragorn and Gandalf are all still alive. 

The Evil player’s objective is to take Lobelia captive. To do this they must reduce her Wounds to zero, but instead of killing her this renders her unconscious. She then needs to be carried to the edge of the board by the Orcs. This can be done by a single Orc carrying her. See the rules for carrying on page 109 of the Rules Manual. Lobelia is a Light Object for the Orcs to carry, a Heavy Object for the Goblins.  

SPECIAL RULES 

Gandalf will arrive part way through the battle. Starting on turn three he arrives from the Eastern board edge on a roll of 4+. 

PARTICIPANTS 

Good 

  • Lobelia Sackville-Baggins 
  • Aragorn 
  • Gandalf 
  • 8 Hobbit Militia 
  • 4 Hobbit Archers 

Evil 

  • Hunter Orc Captain on Fell Warg 
  • 6 Hunter Orcs on Fell Warg 
  • 12 Angmar Orcs 
  • 24 Moria Goblins 

PDF Download: Attack on the Hamlet of Hamlingden