Dan was here for a short stay last week, and we took the chance to have a couple of games of In Her Majesty's Name. These were in part a playtest for the Imperial Cossack Company, with stats changing between games to balance the various characters out.
The first game was a scenario to defend a central building, in this case one of the secret depots of the Society of Thule.St Petersburg has its tendrils stretched far in attempts to make sure that it stays abreast of developments with its Great Power rivals. It was something of a coup when one agent discovered a base in an East Prussian forest that the Society of Thule uses to test its experimental weapons. The Tsar duly called on his best saboteurs in the form of the Imperial Cossack Company to make an attack and render the base useless. Little could Colonel Razin and his cut-throats know that visiting the base at the same time was Von Stroheim himself...
|Jager deployed to defend the south-western approach.|
|The south-eastern approach defended by Von Stroheim, Krieg and Dr Kobalt.|
|Approaching from the south-east, the witch Solokhna and 3 Cossack riflemen. (I had to use proxies for my Cossack riflemen which turned up in the post the next day - enter the Sand-people)|
|And coming from the woods to the west, Colonel Razin and Olga, Grigori and Yuri.|
|Yuri bounded through the wire aided by his speed, but his jager opponent survived the first round of combat and with rifle, bayonet, guts - and quite a bit of luck - dispatched the bear swiftly.|
|At the same time Feldwebel Krieg advanced to fry some Cossacks, but went down to some long range rifle fire.|
|Grigori and Razin advanced to avenge Yuri and remove the jagers. What happens when your leader rolls a 1 on their pluck roll? He joins the bear - out of the game!|
|Girgori killed a jager only to be knocked down himself. Note Olga behind a stack of crates trying to give covering fire. She didn't hit anything all game.|
|Getting back up Grigori clubs down the resultant todtruppen from his previous victory.|
|His single-handed fight comes to an abrupt end in the next turn.|
|A Cossack charges in to deal with Dr Kobalt, only to have Von Stroheim save the day.|
|Von Stroheim moves off after Olga, but the remaining Cossack riflemen shoot down Dr Kobalt!|
The stat lines have been updated in the Imperial Cossack Company blog entry.
Another big learning curve was just how able a pleb with rifle and bayonet is against characters. Admittedly Colonel Razin had some pretty bad luck (and would again in game two), but the jagers and the cossacks gave good accounts of themselves. The other surprise was that 12 turns took three hours. Even accounting for the learning nature of the game, I had anticipated a swifter conclusion. The game never got boring despite this, and provided for a few moments of hilarity along the way.
I hope to put up a brief description of the rematch soon.