Sunday, 21 May 2023

Dragon Slayer

As mentioned in my previous post, I'm planning a game of Dragon Rampant for my clubs' open day in August. The idea behind this is to use the rules to create a mighty dragon and a classic D&D party to fight him. By using the various unit templates I've made a dragon that is the equivalent to a 36 point warband. likewise the party of "Adventurers" is also equal to a 36 point warband.

Each character is a Single Model Unit represented by a unit profile. The Knight is, obviously, an Elite Rider, The Dwarf is Heavy Foot, whilst the Barbarian is Bellecose Foot. Both the elf and sorceress are based on missile templates. The sorceress is a limited spell caster (Wizardling) so her shooting is played as if it is a "Magic Missile." The hobbit is a Light Foot unit with my own special rule Limited Invisibility. All of the characters have their own special abilities. For example: Azgrim Ironbeard has Dwarf Forged Armour (Mystical Armour in the rulebook).

Below: The party of brave adventurers: Lanolix Greenfeather, Grogan the Barbarian, Sir Garavel the Paladin, Bongo Stinkfoot, Vanya the Sorceress and Azgrim Ironbeard. Are they really brave or just unsuspecting Dragon fodder?
The idea for the dragon seemed sound and I sat down with the Dragon Rampant rulebook to sort it all out. The Dragon ~ Anglanchor the Great, is made up of 6 "Body Areas": his head, 2 front claws, 2 rear claws and his tail. His head is a Greater Warbeast, his front claws are Elite Foot units, his rear legs are Heavy Foot and his tail is also Elite Foot. He also has a breath weapon and a few other little tricks. Each of his Body Areas has the chance to activate during his turn so he is capable of dealing out multiple attacks and smiting his enemies.
It took a while to determine what was what and I spent the better part of last week putting it all together, chopping and changing things here and there. I eventually got things to where I thought they should work and got together with some friends to play test it.
Initially the first game was a devastating win to the dragon and I thought: "Oh dear." I thought I had dramatically over powered him. Another game and I remembered that was forgetting to use the characters' special abilities, magical weapons, etc... (That's right: everyone else wanted to be the dragon and I got stuck with the adventurers.) The problem was that I was concentrating so much on trying to work it all out and get the game up and running that forgot those little details for the characters. To much to think about!

Okay! Now that I settled into it and started using the characters abilities the game was much more even. They managed to get a hard fought win, even though some of them went to meet their maker from getting to close to Anglanchor the Great's iron claws.
All in all what I came up with worked out exactly as I had hoped. The only thing I'm going to change is to reduce the armour of the dragons' rear legs. The Heavy Infantry profile has the special ability Wall of Spears. I removed this because it made no sense. So to compensate, I increased the armour by +1. This change drastically over balanced these body areas: 12 Strength points with 4 armour. For me that didn't work. So Rear legs ~ Armour 3. That's the only change.
These pics are not from any of the games. I set them up just give an idea of how the game looks on the table. I already had a 3' x 3' double sided board that I made during the lockdown. It's nice and sturdy and looks great. I made four corner hills using some left over high density foam and moulding plaster that I had in the garage. It has to look good for the open day, after all.
One thing I found out is that each character has their own role. Some should not be in the front line. Both the elf archer and the sorceress I put into the front line initially and they both suffered. I moved the sorceress to the back and got the elf to make a dash to the cover of the woods on the flanks. They both performed a lot better. The little hobbit is fun. He is hard to hit but isn't very good on the attack. On the other hand his unit profile enables him dish out a bit of damage when he's on the defensive.


So I'll be doing more play testing over the next couple of months to cement the rules into my head. It was a really fun game and took about 45 minutes from the first dice roll to the last. That's perfect for an open day participation game. I figure I should be able to play at least 4 games throughout the day and still have time to visit the traders.

By the way, the name of the scenario is Dragon Slayer. I hope to get the scenario published but if that doesn't pan out I'll put them up here and on facebook.


  1. That looks awesome Ian! Like it's straight out of a mini's magazine!
    Sounds like it will be a fun game to play as well.

    1. thanks Ben. It is a fun game to play. Fast and straight to the point and, as mentioned above, it's all over in about 45 minutes. Plenty of frustration and laughs.