Almost a year ago, we came up with the idea of putting on an WAB escalation campaign, wherein players use armies that start out small but grow during the campaign. Real life intervened and put this project on the backburner, but I’m now (finally) ready with the campaign rules (such as they are). Without further ado, here they are:
The overall goal of the WEC is to enable players to build 25mm Ancients armies at an affordable pace, time and money wise. A second goal is to have good, fun Ancients games.
The campaign is set on the continent of Orbis Wabaei. A map is forthcoming from our master cartographer.
This landmass, about the size of Africa, has seen an aeons long epic conflict between civilisation and barbarians, ebbing across the continent in waves of turmoil and upheaval. The two sides have by no means been of constant ethical composition throughout the ages, with individual peoples and tribes switching allegiance at the drop of a hat. As such, while the conflict has endured for centuries uncounted, neither side has gained the upper hand throughout the long struggle.
But perhaps this is about to change.
In the WEC, players are initially assigned to one of the two sides. Their allegiance can (and undoubtably will) change during the campaign however. The proposed initial distribution is as follows:
Civilisation Barbarians ------------ ---------- Granadines (DB) Saxons (AH) Romans (FvB) Sassanids (JP) Macedonian (GK) Celts (BV) Belisarians (BR) Trojans (GW)
Both sides have an overruling body that determines who gets to fight. For the civilisation players, this is called the Senate, for the barbarian players, it is the Rat (read this in German, although the English is also oddly appropriate). Each player gets one vote in this body, with some players getting more votes (see below). Each campaign turn, the voting body determines who may fight following a fixed process:
Note the emphasized point in the third bullet: this means that no player can be held from the battlefield indefinitely. This is done to keep things interesting for all players.
In case of a draw in the number of votes, the player gets to fight. You need a majority to block a player.
The players in general also vote on where to fight, using simple unqualified voting (each person gets one vote). See below.
A player can only fight a player from the other side. Who specifically to fight is determined after both sides have determined who fights battles. No rules are provided to match up armies - this can be dealt with by dicing, diplomacy, as conditions to get votes, etc.
In the case of an uneven match (one side has more armies fighting than the other), something happens that still needs to be decided upon.
Each round’s battles are fought in a specific region on the map.
The battles fought in the WEC are but a small part of the larger conflict waging on Wabaei. These other battles are not modelled in the campaign, but the outcome of the player battles is indicative of the outcome of the larger level: if the civilisation side wins more battles, the region being fought over passes to that side, and vice versa.
Each turn, three regions are proposed for the player battles to occur in, selected by a mechanism that shall remain shrouded in mystery. Each player, irrespective of side and number of votes in their voting body, gets one vote as to which of the regions to fight for. The region that gets the majority votes will be the region for the next battles. The same mystery shrouded mechanism that decides the three proposed regions will decide the region to fight over in absence of a majority vote.
The region being fought over determines the general terrain features of the tabletop battles.
After a battle, the loser and winner face consequences. First, loser and winner are determined, by agreement between players or by using the system provided in the WAB book (points destroyed, table quarters controlled, enemy characters killed, etc).
The loser immediately joins the winning player’s side, and seats in its
Senate / Council with one vote (no matter how many votes he had on his
The loser immediately loses all but one vote in his voting body. Should he lose again in his next battle, he switches sides, seating in his new side’s voting body with one vote.
The winner gains one extra vote in his Senate / Council, and gains one prestige point, which he keeps permanently. This last will provide a ranking of players, and an incentive to keep high ranking players out of battles.
Apart from these more tangible rewards, the winner also gets bragging rights and can add a fancy title to his name, such as ‘Liberator of the Lands of Gromelia’.
The initial battles have been determined by the innocent hands of the umpire, in a carefully orchestrated yet mystery shrouded ceremony. These are the results:
Granadines (DB) vs Saxons (AH) Romans (FvB) vs Celts (BV) Macedonians (GK) vs Sassanids (JP)
These initial battles will be fought using 500 point armies. The initial region for the battles is Istria (SE corner) — use the standard terrain generating rules in the WAB book, but limiting terrain to three features per player.
Use the following table and a die roll to determine the table size to play on:
Die roll Table Size Table Orientation -------- ---------- ----------------- 1 5'x3' Landscape 2 5'x3' Portrait 3 6'x4' Landscape 4 6'x4' Portrait 5 8'x6' Landscape 6 8'x6' Portrait
For 500 point battles, roll 1D4 on this table.
Vile infidels. Pagan or Christian I care not for your vulgar ways. We are too busy writing poetry and designing new palaces to go to war this week (except in our time machine on Sunday when we are involved in something called WW2 with BKC). So, in between planting new gardens at the Al Jammybra advancing the sciences and medicine it will have to next week. I shall inscribe something poetic on that forum of devils at IntBrigade.
Hi Bart, I have a small suggestion to your rules. As they are now written, changing sides will happen on en extremely frequent basis and there exists a possibility (after only 3 straight losses of the barbarian side, that one side no longer has any armies. My suggestion (take it or leave it :)) would be that after a loss, your votes in the senate/rat drop to one. Switching occurs when a one vote army bungles (yet again). This would probably generate fast switching in the beginning (everybody starts with one vote) but would make the game more robust as time goes by, without carving the factions into stone.
Good suggestion by the other Bart — only switching when you lose two consecutive times. With only three players per side, the chances that all end up in the same side soon are not negligible.
Let’s see what happens after the first round of battles, but I’m inclined to follow BD’s suggestion. Any comments by the players?
Query due to greying memory:
500 points + or - general? Also, with 500 points, are we respecting the army list proportions set out for the armies, orr not til they get bigger?
For the 500 points armies, you do not have to include a general (you may, though), but the rest of the army list does have to respect the normal proportions as much as possible. Given that the lack or inclusion of a general has a big effect on the proportion of character points at 500 points, they can be taken with a pinch of salt, but the cavalry/infantry proportions should be respected as much as possible.