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Wednesday, 15 August 2018

Article 13 There's only one Lady Wintermore by Andy Jefcoate

Congratulations to Andy as he not only passes the dozen count in terms of articles on his Flintloque journey but also his longest article to date which is chock full of tabletop gaming ideas, fun and material.  This time he adds the more lethal woman in the Witchlands to his collection in the form of Lady Lamia Wintermore.  In all her forms and with her skeletal bodyguard she is now on the hunt for Saindoux and his band of survivors.   If you wish to read any of the previous articles (we recommend reading them in order) then follow this TAG on our blog. I would not cross her!  GBS

There's only one Lady Wintermore

As I mentioned in a previous article I've been planning on adding a named character to lead my Witchlands force for a while as it has increased in size. The Witchlands has a large number of named Vampyre characters to chose from that all have great background stories, but I wanted a character that fit in with my narrative. Article 8 explained how I added foot and mounted versions of Marshall Ney to my Ferach force so it was about time for me to do the same for the Dark Czar's minions. I also wanted a character that I could use for Slaughterloo at a later date, just like Marshall Ney.

There are some great contenders for this role. You've already seen a picture of my Scooby Doom figure along with his faithful companion Raggy, but while he is excellent in Flintloque he is more of a lone wolf (sorry Scooby, a lone dog). I also looked at Graf von Orlock but he is more of a schemer who leads from behind, whereas I wanted someone who would lead the pursuit. That led me (pardon the pun!) to the Margrave Ivan Wintermore who would fit the bill as a leader in Flintloque and a C-in-C or General in Slaughterloo but he is also the Colonel of the fearsome Liteupski Lancers. He will definitely join my forces at some point but it didn't seem right without his lancers too and I didn't need more cavalry just yet. 

That was when I found her, Lady Lamia Wintermore, the wife of Ivan Wintermore. I've always liked the idea of a character being beauty and the beast and there is no doubt that she is both............ 

Lady Lamia Wintermore
I've already mentioned my obsession with Vampyres in earlier articles and in my opinion Lady Wintermore is the best and worst of Vampyre kind (and I mean that as a compliment). She was born to the great house of Dracsul and has often been a favoured weapon of the Star Wraith himself, being skilled in the intrigue and espionage that the great Vampyre houses are famous for. Her marriage to Ivan Wintermore ended a centuries-long feud between the two houses and made the Wintermores very powerful, but the power means that she has many enemies and few friends, with even her husband avoiding her whenever he can. 

What makes her perfect for my narrative is that she has sworn to destroy the fleeing Elves after her part in the embarrassment at Moskova and she harbours a particular hatred for Marshall Ney.  There is also a mutual hatred between her and the Lady Rosafiend who joined the Emperor Mordred after his visit to the forgotten city of Vilnau, which I am also interested to bring into my games.

Although her preferred weapon is intrigue, in Flintloque Lady Wintermore is an Experienced / Guerrilla Vampyre so while she is only usually armed with a dagger she can look after herself if need be. She is often mounted on a Zombie Horse and moves at Light Cavalry rates. She has two spells from Vampyre Magicke (generated randomly) but in addition few males can resist her of any race. In the initiative stage of the turn she can chose any male target within 15cm and captivate them, which means that they count as already activated and can take no action this turn. 

In Slaughterloo Lamia Wintermore is a general of average status, but is a competent commander. She can negate one Forced Manoeuvre card played on any unit in her division once per game and can also ignore two Command Indecision cards per game.  

Lady Wintermore's Fangs
I couldn't go any further without mentioning this excellent and iconic box set for which the figures are all still available on the Alternative Armies web site, they contain some brilliant characters and will all eventually join my collection. There is also a free download of the book that went with the box game which has been adapted for Flintloque 3rd Edition by Craig Andrews. This is just excellent and I would recommend having a look at it. 

I could write an article just on this set, but at this stage I just want to mention Madame Boniface. He was once a line officer in the Krautian Legion who after his reanimation performed so well that he was transmogrified into a Liche. He has become the Chief of Operations for Lady Wintermore and is often by her side. She likes for him to wear a ball gown and he finds this very appealing.............. 

What did I get?
First up I had to buy the limited edition figure LE025 Lady Wintermore on a horse. She is riding at full gallop while still looking aloof, this is a great figure.

Unlike Marshall Ney, Lady Wintermore already has a figure on foot available (5005I) from the Lady Wintermore's fangs boxed set. This shows the 'beast' side of her and she looks ready to shred anyone around her, so I had to have this figure too. From the boxed set I also bought a Madame Boniface figure (5005J). You have to really. Finally I bought a Lady Rosafiend figure (55016). While she won't join my narrative yet, I like the idea of a showdown in the future.

How did I paint them?
For Vampyres I always use a pale grey for their skin with red eyes so that it is easy to tell what they are on the table.

I looked at various colour schemes for Lady Wintermore but eventually had to use a mix of purple, pink and lilac as a homage to the artwork on the cover of 'Orcs in the Hills' issue 8. This works well and the colours stand out even amongst Napoleonique uniforms. While the clothing on the foot and mounted versions aren't exactly the same, by using similar colours they are tied nicely together.

For Lady Rosafiend I used a red and blue to match the Ferach Elf uniforms as well as giving her red hair. This was a visual indication of her 'current' allegiance to the Ferach side of the conflict.

Finally for Madame Boniface I used a pale blue and pink, and I'm not writing about dresses any more as it sounds like the commentary on a red carpet event! 

The continuing narrative
Unfortunately for Saindoux, his contact with Marshall Ney has brought him to the attention of Lady Lamia Wintermore who leads a large undead force dedicated to destroying as many Elves as she can. She has therefore diverted much of her resource as she hopes that by targetting Saindoux she will also have a chance to catch Ney. If possible she would like to capture him alive as a gift for the Dark Czar but would 'enjoy' his company in the meantime

How have I converted my narrative to the tabletop
While she wouldn't dream of communicating directly with anyone other than another Vampyre or Liche, Lady Wintermore along with Madame Boniface and a small cadre of followers, has joined a scouting party made up of Cossacks and Werewolves in the hope of seeing her enemy up close. She has heard that Marshall Ney and a small relief force are en route to reinforce Saindoux and she would ideally like to catch him on the road.

The game is a simple one on a 6' x 4' table with a track leading from the middle of one short edge to the other. Marshall Ney and his force start the game on the track at one end of the table and have to cross the table and exit from the other short edge. For scenery I have just used my usual scattering of trees with a couple of small hills and some ruins. 

The game is all about Ney, so if he crosses the table successfully then the Ferach force wins, but if he is 'killed' in hand to hand combat he is actually overpowered and captured so the Witchlands force wins. This means that he may not be shot at during the game as the Witchlands troops are too scared of Lady Wintermore to risk killing him. To add an extra complication, Ney is not known as the 'bravest of the brave' for nothing, he must be the last surviving Ferach figure to leave the table.

While I don't normally use points for my forces, this is potentially a big game for Flintloque points wise, so I've tried to balance the two forces each time I've played it. I also haven't set a turns limit as it's a fun game to play to its conclusion without rushing it. 

I've used Lady Wintermore as a mounted figure each time, along with 3 Vampyres of which one is mounted and two are on foot, plus Madame Boniface on foot. With them are 8 mounted Zombiski Cossacks and 10 little Werewolves. This is potentially a devastating force due to the number of Vampyres so although Lady Wintermore is experienced, for the other Vampyres one is average and the other two are raw. 

While I've kept the Witchlands force the same, I've varied the Ferach force. I've tried an all mounted force so as to move faster and included the Ogre Guard Cavalry to punch through the undead lines, but I've also tried a force where all were on foot which was slower but hugely outnumbered their opponents. 

The most fun was probably the force on foot but it was a long game to play so not one to try if you're limited for time. It also created some great little narratives including a small group who were cut off from the main Ferach force, they charged 2 Vampyres and sacrificed themselves rather than delay Ney's escape but took one of the Vampyres down at the same time!

What's next 
Firstly, thank you for getting this far, I know this is probably my longest article to date, so thank you for staying with me. As mentioned in my last article I still have lots of troops to tell you about including my Albion spies. I'll let you know how I get on in my next article.

Thank you for reading.


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