After a fairly long break, we recently had a three player Frostgrave game at the club to introduce a new player and get back into the swing of things.
We just played a very simple scenario with each player placing three chests and played until they had all been claimed and carried off the table. The first eight chests all got grabbed pretty quickly and then we had a crazy protracted three way tug of war which involved a lot of Mind Control and Blinding Light spells with very high casting rolls so they were difficult to shake off. Although it was initially pretty amusing, we really should have had some time limit on the game as none of us wanted to give up the last chest and since it wasn’t part of a campaign, our soldiers were all expendable.
The main issue of the game, which I’ve seen before in other one-offs, was that the wizards and missile troops all holed up as soon as they came onto the table and there was just a lot of long-range sniper shooting that wasn’t particularly effective. One funny moment was when my archer who was positioned at the top of a ladder was repeatedly attacked by wandering zombies but each time was able to beat them in combat and push them back down the ladder.
It was great to get Frostgrave back on the table again but for me really highlighted the advantages of playing as part of a mini campaign so that you’re not always prepared to fight to the death for little reward and of having more narrative scenarios which encourage the wizards to move round the table and get involved with the objectives.
I’ve offered to run a Frostgrave mini-campaign at the club in the new year and so far have had about six sign-ups. My plan is to run two groups of players through four linked narrative scenarios across different environments which will culminate in an encounter that is likely to require the players to collaborate to survive. I’m tinkering with a few rules mechanics that encourage the wizards to be more interactive with the environment. For example, a large pile of scrolls or books which a soldier can grab a bagful of and after the game randomly determine whether there’s something useful in there but if a wizard or his apprentice searches the same pile, there’s a much higher chance of finding valuable scrolls as they have a better idea of what they’re looking for.
The club campaign won’t start until February or March so I’ve got time to put some effort into building some nice scenery, and designing new rules mechanics and scenarios. I’ll be posting more updates as I put things together and also to track our games during the campaign.