Storytelling Through Warmachine: The Black Ruins Massacre

The idea of tabletop wargaming as a storytelling mechanism fascinates me. Stick with me on this, I’m trying something new here.

I don’t dig Chess; but I definitely get the attraction of having a gorgeous mahogany table in my living room where a long-running game of wits and strategy runs its course. Accordingly, as suited to a nerd such as myself, there will be steampunk killer robot miniatures and spellcasters instead of marble pawns and knights, all clashing around on grassy hills and ruins instead of placidly sitting on checkerboards. Cool, yeah?

Anyway, so Warmachine. Go look this one up. I’m not going to get into the details on it because I’ve sort of done that already here. What I wanted to share with you today is another experiment in immersive storytelling. I’ll play out the wargame over the next few weeks, hitting each side as hard as I can with all available options in turn. Dice and the game mechanics decide battle outcomes, while limitations and opportunities within the terrain influence the course of events. Dice rolls rule, no matter what I want to happen.

Here’s what’s happened so far…

Warmachine game 4¬†(here’s the pdf if you prefer¬†that to the images below)

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Mysterious ruins of a long abandoned temple were discovered in a forest, its black masonry in rubble but for an inexplicable set of walls and four stairways. The stairs all led to the outer wall; but the central wall forms a barrier splitting the temple in two. But why would a temple be split in two?

The undead and sorcerous Cryx army, led by Bane Witch Agathia arrived first:

Agathea-horz

But the lightning-bearing Cygnar army appeared in the opposite arch of the temple soon after, led by the courageous and battle-hardened Major Beth Maddox.

beth-maddox-cygnar-horz

Cygnar deployed first, readying for a charge from the Bane Warriors…

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Cryx responds with an aggressive deployment…

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Cygnar advances and sets defensive positions…

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Cryx rushes again to look for first blood…only the central wall separates the two main forces.

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The rampaging Satyxis Raiders with barbed metal whips are at the wall, ready to receive a ghostly spell enabling them to rush through the masonry, while a Reaper races along the outer wall…

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And that’s where we are because I have work to do and have killed an entire morning doing this on a day off. Something’s going on with the wall that separates the two halves of this temple. That’s also where this big clash is about to happen. Crazy stuff, yeah?

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this. Let me know what you think.

See you next time.

 

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