The Marienburg Merchant Guard entered the Vale of Woe. They sent a small party ahead to meet up with guides for hire that they had arranged for several weeks previous. These guides were to lead them to the point along the river where the hermit boatman supposedly lives.
The two meeting parties approached one another and something seemed dramatically wrong. The approaching guides were larger than expected. They weren't men either, but Ogres -and there were over a dozen of them.
Ogres do roam the streets of Marienburg and their sight would not have been cause for immediate distress. However, it was the fact that they were barreling towards them, bawling, and brandishing iron clad fists and other weapons.
The Merchant Guard braced for the inevitable impact and steeled themselves for victory or death. Spears were readied, black powder and shot were packed into handguns and pistols, and the militia fanned out.
Quick thinking on the part of several merchants even resulted in a Mortar - meant to be a gift to the Merchants of Ind - being brought to ready and fired at the closing Ogres. Luckily they had been trained in its use so they could demonstrate it, but their lack of proficiency was obvious.
Two groups of Pistoliers attempted to flank the Ogres, but as soon as the wild eyed gaze of hunger lust fell upon horses the steeds panicked! No amount of training between the rider and mount could calm them.
The Spearmen fought bravely - holding their ground and battling back. The biggest bruiser was ultimately dragged down, but the battle didn't end there. The Ogres that had driven off the Pistoliers came to his defense, allowing him to crawl away. The regimented training of the Merchant Guard and heroic leader ship of their proud Captain allowed them to face all comers and run them down. The disorganization of the Ogres being their downfall.
It was a hard fought battle. This was my first game against the Ogres and they are a burly lot. Previous experience in the game had taught me that big blocks of troops and out casting him would win the day, and it surely did. I went for a 6x5 block of 30 spearmen (6 being the frontage) and coupled with a tooled up captain and tooled up wizards. It was a fun game. Things looked bleak when my two units of pistoliers fled the table in the face of separate Ogre charges, but it still all worked out. Those failed charges took 2 Ogre units out of position and resulted in all of the Ogre charges in the center of the battlefield to go on unsupported against my superior numbers. In all it was good game.
My apologies to Chad for no longer knowing the game backwards and forwards. It was a long night of looking up rules, but still fun and rewarding.
My apologies as well to any reader who read an earlier draft of the above this morning. It was an ugly first draft. Ugly!