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Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Rehashing A Campaign System

At BOYL 2014 myself and lenihan ( were discussing the 5th edition campaign rules. We agreed that they were nice and simple and allowed for fast campaigns to be run without an over burdening of paperwork. Over the last few days this has been going around in my head and I decided to see if I could convert them (unashamedly nab them) to work for 3rd edition. So, after a little bit of tinkering this is my first draft. I still have to post up about creating Veterans but the rest is pretty much here.

Anyone who hasn't already switched off is free to give them a go and report back their findings. I hope to give them a go with my fellow OGRE's at a later date. They obviously will need tweeking and some things may not be as clear on paper as they are in my head so this posting may get edited
with other people's suggestions. Simply put, constructive criticism is encouraged!

The campaign takes place either on a newly discovered island, a deserted or unexplored area of the Border Princes or even in a totally new world that is not Warhammer, just one that uses the rules and everything..........................

Each player fights to gain control of the land and become the lord of a new realm. To begin with each player generates three random territories from the territory chart below. These represent a mix of settlements, terrain and resources which his army controls. Once the campaign is under way new players can join at any time simply by generating three random territories from the chart.

Each player makes a note of his territories on a sheet of paper, in a note book, on a spreadsheet or anything that will serve as his campaign diary.

Players choose an army of 1,500pts for each battle and forces are chosen afresh every time the army fights, although each player must stick to the same army - Orcs, Empire, Wood Elves etc....... You may wish to start with slightly smaller armies, say 1,000pts  or 1,200pts as this makes it easier to get the armies together. 1,500pts is a reasonable total for players who already have established armies.

Armies are chosen from the relevant list in Warhammer Armies and all of the restrictions listed apply (i.e. maximum number of items of magic armour, 0-8 Treemen etc.......). Note, as the value is 1,500pts all maximums and minimums are reduced by 50% (e.g. the 50 minimum Clarats in a Skaven army becomes minimum 25).

Army Restrictions
The types and quantity of troops the armies can field is restricted by the territory they control. As the army's commander expands his territories he also expands his army, attracts heroes and wizards to the cause, acquires riches and wins new magic items.

To start off with each player is restricted in his choice as follows:

Strategic Features - such as bridges, roads and passes - limit access by your armies. to represent this, armies are chosen to 1,500pts and larger armies can only be assembled by taking control of bridges, roads and passes.

General - this can be ANY character type of ANY level allowed to be a general by the Army List (Hero or Wizard). This character represents YOU and should be given an appropriate (or not) name of your choosing.

Characters - additional Heroes and Wizards can only be included if you have appropriate territories.

Army Standard - can be included if you have a character other than your general to carry it. NB: It can only have magical properties if you poses the appropriate territories.

Magic Items - you may select a single magic item. Each additional property counts as extra 1 magic item for the purposes of territory. If a magic weapon is selected then the initial 25pts of the weapon is added to the first property and counts as 1 magic item. Undead Heroes of over level 5 that must carry a magic weapon get a "gimme" magic item. The cost of the item is added to the cost of the hero but no properties can be selected unless the player controls the appropriate territories.

Elites - only two units of shock or missile elites can be included in your army and can not include more unless the player controls training grounds.

Riding Beasts - each army may include up to 10 riding beasts and can not include more unless the player controls stables to house the beasts. (things in the list that count as riding beasts for territory purposes are: horses, warhorses, cold ones, chaos steeds, orc boars, wolves, undead horses and undead ox). Riding beasts for Characters and those used to pull chariots must come out of this allocation also.

Skirmishers/Scouts - you may not include skirmishers and/or scouts unless you control either a Forrest or Mountains as it is there territories from which such troops are drawn.

Pack Animals - your army may only include 6 pack animals and can not include more unless the player controls kennels to house them. (things in the list that count as pack animals for territory purposes are: chaos hounds, warhounds, bears, wood elf boars, wild cats, giant rats, skaven giant wolves, rat ogres, cold one warhounds, slann giant scorpians, slann giant spiders, sabre tooth tigers, and hob hounds).

War Machines - each army can include a single war machine and can not include more unless the player controls forests to provide wood to build machines and fuel furnaces. (things in the list that count as war machines for territory purposes are: chariots, treemen (yes, really!), bolt throwers, cannons, warp-fire throwers, normal fire throwers, jezzails, pump wagons, stone throwers, lead belchers, organ guns, flame cannons, gyrocopters, rocket launchers, bazukas, mortars, whirlwinds, tenderisers, and those chaos dwarf field guns that Erny has about 6 of).

Ridden Monsters & Hosts - You may not include ridden monsters or Hosts unless you control appropriate territories from which these are drawn from. You may only make use of the hosts that your Army list allows you to. Dragon Kin and Carrion count as Ridden Monsters.

Allies - You may not include Allies unless you include a Trade Route as it is by trade that diplomatic friends are made. You may only make use of the Allies that your Army list allows you to.

Mercenaries - You may not include Mercenaries unless you include Mines to produce gold/silver/precious gems/warpstone with which to pay them. You may only make use of the Mercenaries that your Army list allows you to.


To begin with each payer generates three territories. To generate territory roll a D66 on the chart below.

11 to 13Wizards TowerRoll D6
1 to 5 Level 5 Wizard
 6 Level 10 Wizard
14 to 15ShrineRoll D6
1 to 4 Level 10 Wizard
5 to 6  Level 15 Wizard
16TempleRoll D6
1 to 4 Level 20 Wizard
5 to 6  Level 25 Wizard
21 to 32VillageRoll D6
1 to 5 Level 5 Hero
6 Level 10 Hero
33 to 34TownRoll D6
1 to 4 Level 10 Hero
5 to 6 Level 15 Hero
35CityRoll D6
1 to 4 Level 20 Hero
5 to 6 Level 25 Hero
36Training Ground+1 Elite unit
41Stables4+D6 riding beasts
42Kennels2+D4 pack animals
43 to 44Road+D6x10 points. +D6x10 per battle won if the road is staked.
45 to 46Bridge+2D6x10 points
51 to 52Pass+3D6x10 points
53 to 54ForrestSkirminshers/scouts +D3 warmachines.
55 to 56MountainsSkirminshers/scouts + access to Monstrous & Chaotic Hosts. After each battle roll a D6. If you roll a 6 you gain an additional Mine (see below).
61 to 62Trade Route1 magic item and access to Allies
63 to 64Mine1 magic item and access to Mercenaries
65Ruins1 magic item and access to Ethereal Host
66SpyYou gain a Spy plus roll an additional territory

Spies represent agents and sympathisers in the enemy ranks or amongst his subject peoples. If you have a spy network you can use it to spy on your enemy's territory and conduct acts of sneaky espionage.

If you wish you can use a spy at the start of a game. Roll a D6:

1CaughtYour Spy is intercepted and slain, but not until he has revealed details of your entire spy network. Your Spy Network is uncovered and destroyed
2Steals MapsA treacherous servant in the enemy's camp steals important maps of troop movements and supply lines. If you win the battle you are able to exploit this knowledge by annexing a valuable part of his empire. To represent this the enemy must change the territory he has staked to one of your own choosing. 
3AssassinA conspiritor in the enemy's ranks attempts to slay an enemy character on the eve of battle. Pick an enemy character as the target. Roll a D6 to see whether your assassin gets past his bodyguard: 1-2 the assassin is discovered and killed - no effect; 3-6 you reach the target. If the target is the General deduct 1 from the dice roll because he is better protected. The assassin strikes D3 automatic hits against the victim at strength D6. If slain the character is removed from the enemy's army; if wounded he starts the game less the number of wounds inflicted by the assassin.
4SabotageA saboteur in the enemy's camp hamstrings the horses/wolves/cold ones etc…. & sets fire to the baggage. Roll a D6 for each cavalry model or chariot in the enemy's army. On a roll of 6 remove the model. For each model removed in this way the enemy can add one infantry model of no greater value to an existing infantry regiment. Also, roll a D6 for each war machine in the enemy army - on a roll of a 6 it is destroyed.
5BriberyYou have bribed an enemy officer who has a grudge against his General, paying him to hold back from the fight. Nominate one enemy unit as being under the command of the bribed officer. At the start of each turn, the enemy must roll a D6, and on a roll of a 1 that unit will do nothing that turn unless it is already engaged in hand-to-hand combat in which case it will fight normally. If the unit is skirmishers or allies it will do nothing on a roll of 1 or 2.
6PoisonYour agents have poisoned the wells in the vicinity of the enemy camp. At the start of his first turn the enemy rolls a D6 for each of his units. A unit which rolls a 1 is suffering from the effects of poisoned water and cannot move or shoot in the first turn. Otherwise it is unaffected. 

Fighting Battles

Players are free to fight each other as they wish, representing skirmishes along their borders intrusions into their rivals' territory and outright invasions. The number of territories held by each player represents the size and power of his realm. The more territories a player has the bigger and better his power base.

When battle is joined both players must stake one of their territories. Spies can not be staked in this way. Each player nominates the territory to be staked before the game begins. After the battle is over an additional territory is generated from the chart.
Winning Territory

The player who wins the game retains his original territory and selects either of the two remaining territories to add to his own. This will either be his rivals territory or the new one. The loser takes the territory that is left.

If the winner takes his rival's territory the loser is assumed to have been forced back into the newly generated territory. If the winner takes the new territory then the battle has determined which side will posses the new land.

In the event of a draw both sides retain their territories and the player with the least territories gains the new one. If both players have the same amount of territories then roll a dice to see who gets the new territory.


If a player has at least twice as much territory as his opponent then his enemy is an "underdog". The following rules help to protect underdogs and also encourages players to fight opponents of a similar level.

If a player is an underdog he can raid his enemy's land. A raid is fought just like any other game except that both armies are limited to the same maximum points value set by the underdog. The points value must be at least 1000pts and it can be as high as the underdog's entire army.

Because the underdog player is making a surprise raid into enemy territory, taking advantage of his small size to penetrate deeply into his enemy's lands, he can pick which territory his enemy must stake. Obviously an underdog will choose the best targets to raid!

Futhermore, both armies are limited in choice as if the staked territories were the only territories either player had. This represents the fact that only local troops are available to fend off the raid, while the raiders are a nimble and mobile force.

To be continued...................................


  1. Boy those Treemen really did a number on you, hey? ;-)

    Most interesting post, especially since I never read the 5th edition. I'm always interested in campaign system. Will give it a go once I find a new regular opponent (my main opponent, my brother, is shipping off to Japan for a few years!).

    1. One of my friends has just moved out to Japan too, must be the trendy thing to do!

      It's a system that works really well in 5th so I hope I'm doing it justice.

      I hope the restriction on Treemen makes sense and doesn't come as bitterness................

    2. Nah, I was just yanking your chain mate.

      I really hope I can try it sooner than later to give you some feedback. Campaign like this also provide natural "anti-cheese" mecanism which can sometimes be useful when lacking a GM.

    3. That's what I thought =)

      Absolutely, feel free to bash it up when you're ready and give it a good going over, all tweeking recomendations will be seriously considered.

  2. You certainly have given this some thought. Interesting you included a pic of mighty empires as it had some quite detailed rules from what I can remember on campaigning and those rules were written for 3rd edition. One tricky thing I can remember was that one had to pick your army/ies at the beginning and then live with the choices you made. It made perfect sense but effectively ruled out one shot/suicide type troops like fanatics and hosts as the points paid for them would be lost as they invariably died/ran off. I cannot recall the rules dealing with undead very well either. Most undead eventually succumb to instability and as such one would find that an undead force would eventually melt away unless they could summon new troops. And if they could summon new troops easily then the opposite problem would arise - they would be near unbeatable as they would swamp the other players after a while.

    1. Agreed. This system tries to nulify those advantages and disadvantages.

      Whilst I love the idea of using the same troops form game to game (and indeed that would tend to be my method from game to game, maybe with the odd tweek) you end up having to work out reinforcements and such like so hence why I like the baove, it just assumes reinforcements happen by letting you pick a new force.

      These rules are very simple. I'm not hiding that but that's also the point, they allow you to get on with the battles with a minimum of admin work, it also means you don't NEED a GM so everyone can get in on the campaigning fun.

  3. Sounds like it is well worth giving it a go. My only issue is with army selection from Warhammer armies, being an awkward sod I was planning on putting an army together that had elements of 3 or 4 lists. It would essentially be a hobgoblin army (which is only a mercenary list) with some elements of the orcs and goblins lists (half orcs, black orcs and eventually orcs and goblins which can obviously be covered by allies mercenaries as i (fail to) gain territory). Would there be wiggle room for an army list of a non traditional type? I'm quite happy to have a master list so that I can't just drop in a unit of chaos knights (oh didn't i tell you......?) which could be peer reviewed and I'm quite happy to stick to unit sizes and restrictions as laid down in the parent lists. Go on, you know you want to :)

    1. Dude, I'm only saying about using the Army lists to keep it simple, no reason you can't cobble together a list, just let everyone involved check it to make sure nothing's sneaked in that's overly unbalanced (a little unbalancing is fine, it keeps the world going around). At the end of the day the Hobgoblin Mercanary list gives a damn good starting point and logic dictates that basic warriors would be your core, build it from there. So long as everyone is having fun who cares if we wiggle it a little bit (oo'er misses!!!!)

  4. Good luck, this sort of thing is exactly my bag baby. My only advice, a campaign will succeed or fail because of the human element involved, the rules themselves are not that important ultimately. I recommend having a GM who doesn't play in the campaign too.

    1. Yeah, I understand the GM thing but it does mean you end up with one person not getting to play, not much fun for them.

  5. I like the look of these rules a lot. I skimmed General's Compendium once and there was something along these lines, I think. One feature I particularly like is that you included the concept of having to have certain types of territories to field certain types of troops. I really like this, it reminds me of Medieval Total War in that you have to build up your territories to be able to build different troop types. I will definitely jot these down. I can't say when, or if I'll actually get to play.

    1. Cheers Dude, there's a version of them in both 5th edition and 6th and the ease of use of them has,always appealed to me.

      If you manage to try them then let me know how it goes. I'll try and get part two done at some point this week.

  6. Great post, always like to see more of this sort of thing in the community to provide some brain food to supplement the eye candy.

    It seems you're quite clear in your intention here of what you are and aren't trying to achieve, in terms of substituting for a GM and keeping paperwork to a minimum. So I'll try and split my comments into two sections, one hopefully relevant to these as written, the others at somewhat of a tangent I think.

    a) I'm not clear on how you see territories ultimately working. Is there a "map", and if so how does it work? Do you fill in blank hexes (for example)? In other words, do you ever run out of territories to generate? Along those same lines, for battles rather than raids are you limited in which territories you can fight over (e.g. neighbouring territories)?

    b) It's also not really clear how strategic features work - what happens when you control them?

    Off on the tangent now, so probably not relevant to what you're trying to achieve...

    I tend to approach these things from "how does this work for orcs", and I'm not really sure they do. For example these rules as written are good for humans, dwarves and probably high elves, but not for wood elves (whose town may not be recognisable as such to a human) or for orcs who destroy rather than build.

    Hence I'm not totally comfortable in all cases with the concept that control of the resource gives you access to the troops - for the wizards tower does he join you or resent the intrusion? Perhaps for evil armies (or optionally for any player) towers and temples are sources of magic items rather than reinforcements? Woods for war machines, mines for mercenaries and trade routes for allies does seem sensible to me though.

    You have got my brain going now - although probably off down rabbit holes rather than coming up with something straight forward!

    Looking forward to seeing the veterans bit.

    1. Ah ha! I've thought about this, the territory could be renamed for something more relevant, ( as a graveyard for undead), the important part is the role. Orcs will still have a type of settlement, it would just be different to a human town. The strategic features simply give you access to options or more points to spend. These rules are unashamedly and intentionally simplistic.

      There is no reason anybody shouldn't nick this and expand on it if they want a more intricate and involved campaign.

      The wizards tower idea intrigues me. I could see an idea for maybe rolling to see if the wizard joins or mot or maybe joins after each battle. Again, keeping the rules simple for now means i wouldn't add it at this point but defo a consideration if this campaign system took off with my gaming group and we ran a second one (if we use it at all)