Matt & I finally got in a game of Frostgrave after originally picking up the rulebook back in July 2015. Seems like we often pick up a set of rules right when they are released and yet it takes forever to get a game in. Better late than never I guess.
For our first game, I made two starting warbands so we could get right into the game when we got together. I had a more of a chance to look through the spell lists than Matt and I went with an Enchanter for my Wizard. I choose the Enchanter as I liked the idea of moving around unclaimed treasure with the Telekinesis spell and making it easier to claim for my warband.
Without having the time to look at the large list of spells, Matt went with an Elementalist for his wizard and used a pre-selected spell list that he found online.
Matt's Warband: Elementalist Wizard & Apprentice (Made up primarily of existing Mordheim figures)
Dan's Warband: Enchanter Wizard & Apprentice (Made up primarily of classic Grenadier and Ral Partha figures)
With our spells chosen we were ready to jump into the scenario. I set the board up ahead of time to play the first scenario in the rule book, The Mausoleum. In this scenario there is a Mausoleum in the center of the board with a special treasure placed on each of the 4 corners. Two normal treasures are also placed on the board along with two skeletons. Each turn a new skeleton will enter play from a random side of the mausoleum. The Warband getting the most special treasure off the board will be the winner.
I set up on side A, Matt set up on side B.
Matt's left flank.
Matt's Wizard, Infantryman and zombie in the center.
My Enchanter, some call him Tim, starts with three of his soldiers within 3" of him so that he can take advantage of activating all of them together in the Wizard Phase.
On the right flank, the Apprentice also has soldiers within 3" in order to move together during the Apprentice Phase.
Matt's Wizard presses forward towards the mausoleum and the special treasure, his raised zombie shambling forward alongside him.
My Apprentice moves forward towards a standard treasure that sits on the second floor of a nearby building as the Ranger stays close by her side to protect her.
Tim the Enchanter, with the bear by his side, moves forward and casts Telekinesis on an unclaimed special treasure that he can see on the far corner of the mausoleum. He successfully casts the spell and drags the treasure 6" closer to him and further away from Matt's warband. This would prove to be a handy spell.
Up in a ruined building, Matt's Crossbowman has the bear in his sights and takes a shot. He rolls a natural 20! We used the Critical Hit rule, and this resulted in double damage and a quick and immediate take down of my bear before he got a chance to do anything. Those Critical Hits can be very deadly even to a tough creature.
After both Warbands have finished their turn, any uncontrolled creatures on the board take their turns and will generally move into contact and attack the nearest player. In this case, the skeleton moved in to attack Matt's zombie.
In this undead vs undead fight, the skeleton came out on top and took the zombie out of action.
Taking a cue from my Wizard, the Apprentice successfully casts Telekinesis to pull a normal treasure off the second story of a ruined building and drop it right at her feet so she can pick it up. Matt's Warhound charged ahead to put pressure on my Apprentice and found my Warhound and Ranger ready and waiting.
Matt's Knight prepares to charge my Ranger and Warhound who had by this time taken his Warhound out of action.
On his right flank, Matt's Thug claims one of the normal treasure chests.
We used the rules for Random Encounters, so as soon as a treasure is first claimed, a d20 roll is made and on a result of a 16+ a random creature comes on the board from a random board edge. In this case two ghouls showed up on the board edge next the Thug that just claimed the treasure.
Matt's Infantryman fights off one of the skeletons that emerged from the mausoleum
The Ranger and the Warhound hold off the Knight as the Apprentice makes her escape off the board with a treasure.
In a desperate fight, Matt's Thug defends himself from the ghoul's attacks.
As Sneaky Pete the Thief claims one of the special treasures, my Enchanter casts a Wall spell between the Thief and Matt's warband, effectively blocking off line of sight to Matt's missiles and spells, as long as the spell stays up.
Tim cover's his soldiers as they move towards the board edge to escape with the treasure.
With a 6"x3" wall, the Crossbowman up in the ruins has no line of site at the Thug and the Thief make off with another treasure. The wall spell proved to be another very useful spell. It doesn't cause damage, but blocking line of sight is a big deal.
The ghoul continues to harass Matt's Thug as he withdraws. His Apprentice takes advantage of her own Wall spell to block off the ghoul from reaching his other Thug that is carrying a treasure off the board.
With another Wall spell, the Apprentice blocks the advance of another skeleton that emerged from the mausoleum.
As they make their way slowly off the board with the encumbering treasure, another skeleton from the mausoleum threatens to overtake some of my soldiers.
Using a Push spell, my Enchanter successfully pushes the skeleton 10" away from me and effectively out of range from catching me before I exit the board. Danger averted. Once all the treasure has left the board, the game immediately ends.
After the game wrapped up we did a quick check on the injury results for any of our warband members that went out of action. As it turned out, only my bear summoned through the Animal Companion spell rolled a result that meant he was dead, everyone else made a full recovery.
We both got one regular treasure off the board, and my warband ended up getting three of the special treasures off the board to Matt's one. Being able to use Telekinesis to move the unclaimed treasure closer to my warband and away from Matt made a big difference in capturing more treasure. Definitely a spell to keep in mind for the future.
We were just using this as a learning game so after the game we didn't end up rolling all the treasure rolls or figuring out experience for our Wizards.
The game was a lot of fun and a good learning experience. The mechanics are different from other games we play so there was a bit of learning curve to getting things to run smoothly, but things seemed to go pretty well once we got through a couple turns.
One of the interesting things to figure out will be what Wizard school will fit best with our individual playing styles and what spells to choose starting out. Some of the spells I found most useful weren't actually ones that caused damage to my opponents, but ones that moved treasure and blocked LOS. It seems like there will be plenty of tactical variety in using spells in Frostgrave.
Looking forward to getting more games in and starting an ongoing campaign.