‘Warband’ sized games seem to be hugely popular at the moment. I’m not sure whether it’s a question of economics, space or other factors, but rules that require you to have forces of around 40 – 60 miniatures seem to have hit a chord amongst wargamers.
Whether it’s Bolt Action, Chain of Command, Muskets & Tomahawks, Sharp Practice 2, Saga or Lion Rampant, we are seeing more of these rules being published all the time – Deus Vult – Burn & Loot is one of the latest in this trend.
In 2014, Osprey Publishing published Lion Rampant by Dan Mersey, a ‘Warband’ sized game with a Medieval setting. This proved to be a popular set of rules, and Dan & Osprey followed this up at the end of last year with Dragon Rampant, which moves the core rules of Lion Rampant into the Fantasy realm. The only real rules difference between Medieval & Fantasy is the addition of additional races such as Dwarfs, Goblins and Undead, and the use of Magic, Monsters and Flyers. Dan looks to have done this with great aplomb with Dragon Rampant.
I’ve been meaning to pick these rules up for a while, and whilst a hardcopy version is still on the shopping list, Amazon currently have the Kindle Version of the rules on offer for £2.59 – at the price picking up a copy of these rules really is a no-brainer. I’m not sure how long this low price is available for, so don’t hang around too long if you are interested.
Having got the rules, my next question was ‘What about figures?’ Buying a new fantasy army or two is not currently in my plans for this year, although with the imminent release of Fantasy Sword & Spear, I might finally get those 10mm Copplestone armies I have been promising myself.
And then I remembered that I actually have two or three fantasy armies readily available.
I was a huge fan of the first edition of Battlelore.
This was a ‘Commands & Colors’ style game, set in a fantastical Hundred Years War setting where Goblins & Dwarfs fought alongside human armies. That game expanded to include many more units, greatly increasing the number of Dwarf and Goblins forces to the point where they could field their own armies. Standard troops such as crossbows, archers and swordsmen were supplemented by spearmen, slingers and axemen and then by cavalry such as ostrich, hyena and even cattle riders.
In addition to these, monster also feature in the game – Giant Spiders, Giants and Elementals have been joined by Trolls, Hydras and Dragons.
As I said, I was a huge fan of this game and bought pretty much anything…which actually means that I have lots of 18mm fantasy troops available to play Dragon Rampant with – enough to form Dwarf, Goblin and Human army. Some of these are already painted -maybe it’s time I got the rest out of their boxes and onto the painting table…
…which means that since the Dwarfs are all Scottish and wear kilts, I’m going to have to learn to paint tartan – aargh!