|THE UNION VERSES THE ENGINEERS GUILD|
This game was played using the Quick Start rules of “Guild Ball” by “Steamforged Games Ltd”, and is the first in a series of 'friendlies' between the Union and the Engineers Guild, which should hopefully allow us to slowly build up our Season Three teams. For the opening match, both clubs will field the minimal number of players (the captain and two team members) on a 2' x 2' pitch, with the winner being the side to attain six victory points. In addition, apart from two small trees representing the teams' goals, there will be no extra scenery or terrain in place to affect either "how the ball reacts" or "how models traverse the pitch."
"Greetings sports fans, and welcome to today's so-called 'friendly' between the mismatched bunch o’ mercenaries, scum and criminals known as the Union, and the clockwork machines of the Engineers Guild. Both sides have everything to play for, with the losing side vowing to finance their opponents for an entire nights worth of ale at landlord Stone's Whisky & Beer Workshop. Leading out the home favourites is the ruthless pirate king of the sea, Union club captain, Blackheart, followed by the deadly Rage and formidably-sized Centre Back, Fangtooth. Whilst only now emerging to the boos of the crowd are their opposition, Ballista and the Mechanica, Velocity and Hoist..."
|THE TABLETOP - THE UNION'S HOME FIELD|
Having won the coin toss and elected to kick-off, Fangtooth ponderously jogged forwards towards the pitch's centre circle and attempted to punt the ball across the half-way line into the Engineer's side of the field. The excited crowd roared as the massive brute's bare foot successfully connected with the inflated pig-skin and heaved it into 'enemy territory'.
Utilising one of her two influence, Velocity sped northwest towards to take possession of the ball, and then used another influence to re-position herself (using "Dodge") further south, deeper inside her team's half of the field. Blackheart, spotting that his centre-back had clearly kicked the ball far too close to the Engineer's best goal-scorer activated his character trait "Shadow Like", and moved 2" towards the Mechanica striker for free. With a swirl of his cutlass he then sprinted a further 6" towards his target.
|FANGTOOTH KICKS OFF FOR THE UNION|
Sensing his team-mate was already in some danger, Ballista moved east towards Velocity and with a 'thunk' hit Blackheart square in the chest with a crossbow bolt. The Figeon's "Deadbolt" character play caused the sea pirate to suffer a 2" push backwards, knocked him down and caused him three damage. It was first blood to the Engineers, and the already hostile crowd started to murmur about invading the pitch and stringing the portly defensive midfielder up by his ankles. Realising he might be in imminent danger from attack, and not just from the players on the opposing team, Ballista spent his final two influence activating his "Minefield" ability, and surrounded himself with a 4" wide aura of mines...
Skirting Fangtooth's "Foul Odour" (a character trait which automatically forces any model within 3" of the Ethraynnian to treat open-ground as rough-ground), Rage spent his only influence to sprint 7" towards the centre of the pitch, and then watched as Hoist moved northeast to intercept him. However, before the Mechanica could reach the "Maverick", Fangtooth was upon him, charging into the clockwork player with a frightening bellow, and subsequently adding four dice to his attack pool. Nine dice rolls and four hits later, the battered Engineer automaton had just eight health points left, and would have had less if not for his "Tough Hide".
|VELOCITY TAKES POSSESSION OF THE BALL, FLANKED BY BALLISTA|
Snatching the initiative, the Union pressed home their attack on the Engineers' attacking midfielder, and quickly had the crowd roaring in pleasure as Fangtooth seemingly floored Hoist. Unfortunately though, the Mechanica used his "Sturdy" character trait to "ignore the first knocked-down condition placed upon it". But didn't manage to stay on its wooden feet for much longer as the foul-smelling behemoth battered it down into the mud, and gained the Union some valuable momentum in the process.
Meanwhile, somewhat east to the centre of the pitch, Ballista charged into the prone Blackheart, and rolled ten attack dice as a result. Despite suffering -1 to his Defence due to being "Knocked-down", the pirate king's armour deflected two of the Engineer's seven successes. But that was not enough to prevent him from suffering two damage and being pushed 2" back. In addition, the unsportsmanlike assault gained Ballista's side a valuable point of momentum, something which would prove invaluable in the near future...
|THE TWO CAPTAINS BATTLE ONE ANOTHER IN THE CENTRE OF THE PITCH|
Suspiciously smirking at Blackheart's fate, the butcher-like Castellyian clearly has his eye on the Union captain's armband for himself, Rage charged Hoist and, thanks to Fangtooth's 'Ganging-Up' bonus, attained an impressive eight hits. Sparks started to fly from the internal workings of the Mechanica, as he was reduced to five health points and suffered a "Concussion"; one of Rage's character plays which robs its target of one influence.
With a blood-thirsty roar, and entering an absolute "Frenzy", the meat carver-carrying psychopath attacked Hoist again, and then again. Pieces of wood flew from the attacking midfielder's limbs, as Rage literally began chopping him to bits, and by the time the maniacal Union player had finished, the automaton had but a couple of health points left.
|FANGTOOTH AND RAGE BATTER HOIST INTO MATCHWOOD|
Unwisely though, all eyes had strayed away from Velocity, and suddenly the Engineer's striker sprang into action with an 8" sprint straight up the centre of the pitch towards the Union's goal. With a series of clicks, and using its side's momentum, the Mechanica kicked the ball directly towards the tree in front of her. The Ethraynnian rolled four dice, needing just one to succeed, and watched as they landed on a one, two, three... and finally, a four. The automaton had scored, and the Engineer's Guild were 0-4 victory points up over their opponents...
Despite a crescendo of boos and yells the ball somehow found its way back onto the pitch, in the northwest corner, behind Rage and Fangtooth. Blackheart, sensing his team needed his leadership now more than ever, used a momentum to "Take A Breather" (and remove his Knocked-Down" condition), and then charged into the goal-scorer velocity. The Union captain rolled ten dice, but as a result of requiring 5+ to hit (due to the Mechanica's high Defence), the pirate king only caused two damage and created a single point of momentum.
|BLACKHEART CUTS UP VELOCITY, BUT ONLY AFTER THE STRIKER HAS SCORED A GOAL|
Hoist, likewise, similarly used a momentum to "Take A Breather" and then flung himself at Rage. The wooden attacking midfielder managed to cause one damage, push the Union player back 1" and generate a momentum point. But was less successful in his assault upon Fangtooth, as the Human centre back simply relied upon his "Gluttonous Mass" to ignore "the first time each turn" that he is "hit by an enemy attack or character play".
With the match already entering its final phase, Fangtooth finally silenced the annoying clockwork machine desperately trying to pummel his huge frame with brass-knuckled fists, by knocking Hoist's head clean off. The Engineers' bench would need some time to properly re-assemble the mechanical construct and in the meantime the Union were awarded two victory points for the Take-Out; bringing the team of cut-throats back into the game with a score of 2-4. Incredibly however, the smelly behemoth was far from finished, and spending two influence subsequently lumbered into Velocity and started battering the Engineer's star striker for three points of damage.
|FANGTOOTH GOES ON A RAMPAGE, AS THE UNION SEEMS TO GAIN THE UPPER HAND|
Realising that he must act quickly or lose his second Mechanica to the Union's attacks, Ballista fired his crossbow at Blackheart, but cursed as he saw the bullet ineffectively fly wide of its target. With a shout of fury, the portly captain charged into his cutlass-wielding foe, and sensationally caused five points of damage with a successful 'wraparound' attack.
Staggering, the pirate king lashed out at both Ballista and Velocity, and managed to inflict a single wound upon both with a swish of his formidable blade. In return, the clockwork striker caught Blackheart a solid blow to the side of the head, causing the Union Captain one point of damage. But the Sultarish wasn't too phased, as to his west Rage collected the ball, and looked towards an unprotected Engineers goal.
To the south, a large amount of booing indicated that somehow the Engineers' "Icy Sponge" had miraculously managed to get Hoist back upon his wooden feet, and despite sparks flying all over the place, the attacking midfielder was once again in the game. With smoke pouring out from inside the Mechanica's central workings, the automaton sprinted towards Rage, but was soon wallowing in the mud on account of his intended target anticipating his intention and charging into him first.
|RAGE'S MOMENT OF GLORY IS RUINED BY AN ICY SPONGE AND HOIST|
The Union player's meat cleaver viciously hacked into Hoist's wooden torso, and momentarily left the Mechanica bleeding black oil all over the place as a result of 'nicking' a "Crucial Artery". The sight incensed Rage, and going "Bezerk" the attacking midfielder tore into the automaton for a second time, causing two more damage and generating another momentum point for his club.
Sadly though, a gasp of despair from the blood-mad baying fans, alerted the homicidal Castellyian to the fact that Ballista had finally brought Blackheart down onto his knees, with a blow from the butt of his enormous crossbow. The pirate king had fallen, the rotund captain had been awarded two victory points and the Engineers Guild had won the match 2-6. The game was over...