Friday, 17 January 2020

CCXLVIII. Sunhold: The First Triumvirate - Introduction

This summer I will once more be organising an AoS28 multiplayer event game at UMS "Agram" in Zagreb. The project has only recently reached production stage, and I'll be documenting its development here on the blog - perhaps it will help someone who is interested in organising something similar.

Before I started inviting potential participants and collaborators, I had to do a certain amount of work and planning by myself.  The venue and date of the event were both provided to us by UMS "Agram" from the start, so I didn't have to deal with that. I did, however, have to come up with the setting and the premise of the game. This took more than I expected, but I settled for the following:

The story of The First Triumvirate takes place in a territory freshly liberated from occupation by Chaos. The huge and mighty Stormhost is gone to fight somewhere else, and people are working on resettling the area: rebuilding, repopulating, starting new kingdoms on ruins of old. A small contingent of Stormcast Eternals remains to coordinate and lead these efforts. Although armies of Chaos are gone, these lands are not fully safe yet. Wild beasts, the undead and small groups of servants of Chaos are still roaming about. Each city-state and country are painstakingly reclaimed for mankind, and the execution of this effort is organised as a series of reclamation projects. Sunhold is a sprawling ruined city surrounded by plains,forests and marshes. The events of our game will take place within Sunhold's walls.

Each player will take command of a small warband, representing groups that entered the city to fulfil their individual goals. They may be a part of the reclamation project and want to exterminate enemies of humanity to make the city once more habitable, or they may be a party of adventurers or bandits who wish to loot the ruins and fill their own pockets. The warbands may make alliances and collaborate, or betray and eliminate each other on their path through the ruins.
The setting is a loot-littered, monster-infested ruined city; a familiar concept we've seen before in Mordheim, Frostgrave, Shadespire and others. 

The next step was to determine which rules system we would use, as that would have some effect on future decisions. I went to my brother for advice on this one, since he's my usual rules guy. After some discussion he suggested writing a fully custom rules system, and that is what we ended up doing. I will discuss the system in a separate post, as it's a topic worth examining on its own.

Now that we had a setting and an idea what the game will play like, I turned to the matter of the table and scenery. Since I have no more than six months to prepare, I will rely mostly on plastic kits as opposed to elaborate scratch-built terrain. It's the kind of scenery I intend to use for many games in the future, and that re-usability is a big bonus. I have a fine amount of unbuilt Warcry ruins as well as a few sets of Garden of Morr (or whatever they call it these days). I will need the help of others with scatter terrain, though.

The kits have been taken off the sprue and about half of them have been cleaned up already. When that's done, we commence assembly.

This was the moment I had enough to start inviting folks to the game. Some of them are friends I've collaborated before and even met with at past events, but many are people I hadn't been in direct contact with before I invited them. I'm looking forward to seeing a bunch of them around the same table on the day of the game. I will talk more about them and show off their progress here as they start working on their models. You can follow the project on Instagram under #aos28sunhold.

In order to keep the team on the same page regarding the setting and overall aesthetic of the game, I needed to create two documents: Background&Guidelines and the Mood Board. The former lets the participants in on what the event is about and the size and composition of their warbands. The latter consists of images that help convey the colours, shapes, notions and overall atmosphere the game aims to achieve through its visual design. Since there are so many artist working on the project, this is a must if it is to possess a consistent and recognisable look. I crammed the whole crew into a dedicated FB group so we can all communicate, share and discuss about the project.


Mood Board

 That's all for now. Watch this space (as well as Instagram and Facebook) for further updates.


  1. Wonderful. Can't wait to see the progress.

  2. This is great. Themes and setting aside, I'm excited to follow your creation of the process step-by-step.

  3. Sounds so cool! Looking forward to following this project here and on instagram and see this setting unfold! :)
    Do you plan on realeasing the rules to the general public?

    1. Cheers! Yes, the rules will be published after the first bit of playtesting.

  4. I hope one day I will can go to Zagreb form an epic campagn like this. <3
    AoS is not my favorite universe but the imagination of the DAoS community makes this universe terribly attractive.

    1. I think te Mordheim rules seems to be the best rules.
      There is multiplayer optionnal rules for the big battles and the context is almost the same.
      Mordheim rules but with AoS add-on : new stormcast warbands, count-as Wood Elves for Sylvaneth, High Elves for Idoneth... And you have plenty of options for the many human warbands you will invite.

    2. I disagree. Mordheim has really nice campaign rules, but for our multiplayer game with a time limit and a potential large number of players - it simply plays too slow. What we needed from the rules is that they're easy to understand and learn, have incorporated roleplay elements, and are fast to play so the players don't expire waiting for their turn. Hopefully the system we wrote will function as intended.

    3. You're right. I didn't see things like this.

    4. Mordheim is great but unfortunately large multiplayer games are where it is weakest and you do have to wait a long time between turns. I will be interested to read about your custom rules in future.

  5. I have tried a combination of the rules of frostgrave and rangers of shadow deep (which includes elements of a rpg, such as skill roll).

    greetings from Mexico


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