Monday, January 27, 2014

Swords for Hire - Egil Skalagrimsson

So, who is this legendary Hero of the Viking Age? He certainly has a striking model available from Gripping Beast.

History and Legend:

There are a number of sources about Egil, you can click this link for the wiki page. Here is a link to an academic text about the possibility of Egil suffering from Paget's disease. Let's see what Gripping Beast have to say about this legendary character...

"Egil Skalagrimsson was an Icelandic adventurer and Skald (poet) who lived in the 10th century and was the hero of his own saga. He became famous for his eloquence, his brutality and his
knowledge of the power of the runes. His ill-temper became known quite early, when at the age of 7 he put his axe in the head of another boy, accused by Egil of cheating during a game. His behaviour and brutality led to his banishment. He sailed to England, where he served as mercenary having incredible adventures and fighting countless battles. He died peacefully at the venerable age of 80, as wealthy as a king and as a legend in the Viking world."

Egil Skalagrimsson (Copyright GB / Mystic Spirals)

Rules for this Sword for Hire unit:

Inclusion: Egil and his Vikings may be included in any warband that doesn’t use the Viking Saga Dice.

Composition: This unit is composed of Egil and either 3 Hirdmen Heathguards (for 2 points) or 7 Hirdmen Heathguards (for 3 points).

Victory Points: Each Hirdman is worth 1 victory point and Egil is worth 3 victory points.

'The Skald': Egil generates 4 Attack Dice in melee and he and his Hirdmen have an Armour of 5. Within the unit, Egil will always be the last model removed. You cannot remove Egil until all other models have been removed. If this is not possible without breaking the unit formation, exchange Egil with another of the models in his unit before removing casualties to maintain unit formation.

'Vikings!': This unit generates a number of Saga Dice equal to half the models composing it. These Saga Dice are Viking Dice and will be used with the Viking Battleboard. The player controlling Egil will therefore have two Battleboards: his faction board and the Viking board. These Saga dice do not count against the six dice rolled at the start of each turn; they are handled separately from your faction Saga dice.

The Saga Dice generated by this unit may only be used on the Viking Battleboard and this unit may never benefit from Saga abilities from your faction Battleboard. It can only be activated or supported by abilities generated by the Viking Battleboard.


You can see that this is not just a simple or cheap mercenary unit. They eat into your points and provide their own set of Saga dice. While they can deliver a decisive blow in their larger unit form, you have to balance that against the reduction in Saga dice for your other units to use on their own faction battleboard.

Egil Skalagrimsson (Copyright GB / Mystic Spirals)

If you have any advice on using Egil and his band then please go to the forum link below...

Monday, January 20, 2014

Model Review: Gripping Beast Carolingian Franks

Review by Mike Wood

Here are a collection of models from Gripping Beast that can be used in their Saga Franks army, Carolingian variant. You can see that the helm is different to other Saga factions.

Some examples of various Gripping Beast's metal Carolingian contingent...

Gripping Beast Carolingians - left to right: Warlord, Hearthguard spearman, mounted Warrior.

Let's take a look at each unit in turn starting with "the boss"...

The Carolingian Warlord... SF01a

Gripping Beast Warlord model with mount

Monday, January 13, 2014

Owen and The Alternative Strathclyde Faction....

After purchasing plastic cavalry last year to make a mounted Strathclyde faction I took another look over the rules for this faction in "The Raven's Shadow". If you take a look at the 'Hero of the Viking Age' "Owen I, King of Strathclyde..." on page 20 you see that he can lead an all infantry based version of the Strathclyde.

Reading on, the rules allow you to use all the abilities on the battleboard AND also get to use off-table support. This really made me sit up and think about using this "alternative Strathclyde" faction...

Gripping Beast Strathclyde Warriors (Copyright GB)

Monday, January 6, 2014

Model Review: Gripping Beast Steppe Tribes

Model Review by Mike Wood

Here are a great looking collection of models from Gripping Beast that can be used in their Saga Steppe Tribes army.

Gripping Beast Steppe Tribes (Left to Right) : Warlord, Hearthguard, Warrior
Taking a close look at each pack they are:

The Warlord... (pack SST01b)

SST01b Steppe Tribes Warlord

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