Warhammer Fastasy Battles: Warship. Part 1
Warhammer Fantasy Battles: Warship is an expansion of the WHFB game mechanic, it involves naval warfare, on a smaller scale than Man O War.
The wooden hull of "Sigmar's Hammer" crashed through the waves, the Frigate's bow crashing through the waves. The ship's captain, Karl Fredrickson, raised his spy glass to his eye and scanned the dense Fog about his ship. "Damn it." He growled, causing his first mate to turn in astonishment, "What is it, sir?"
"We've lost sight of the bloody fleet. Damn this fog." The ship was sailing, now alone in the great ocean, trying to find the fleet that had briefly engaged a heavily defended Dwarf Convoy. "Let's just pray those damn Ironclads don't follow us. Damn Damn Damn!" The captain shouted the last words frustratedly, then was deadly silent, "Do you hear that?" there was a faint rumbling sound rolling out of the fog. A shape was barely visible in the fog, "Sigmar protect us; Beat to quarters!" the captain whispered, and was echoed three times a bos'uns carried the order across the ship. A drum blasted out a quick beat. The Gun-hatches opened and the long barrels of the frigate's 4 great cannons thrust outwards. "Let us hope the stuntys don't decide to fight." there was a red and orange flash in the fog on the port side, "All hands! DOWN!" screamed the captain as he threw himself onto the floor, "Gun crews! Fire at Will! Fire at Will!"
"Fire!" Screamed a Midshipman, and his gun was blasted backwards on it's small box shaped carriage. The Low profiled Dwarven Ironclad steamed out of the fog, and the Midshipman saw the cannonball simply bounce of it's Metal hull. The other Port side cannon fired, this time smashing into the water infront of the menacing enemy ship. The ironclad turned, three cannon muzzles were now pointed towards the ship. They fired a full broadside in unison, and "Sigmar's Hammer"'s decks were sprayed with splinters as the cannon balls ripped through the wooden hull. Men's limbs were torn from their bodies, the floor becoming slick with blood, the survivors tried to reload, as the starboard battery also fired at another, smaller, dwarf ship that came up on that side. The weaker Dwarf sloop's hull cracked under the impact, and water started to flow in. Suddenly, as the men cheered the sinking sloop, the frigate wwas engulfed in the Shadow of a dwarf dreadnought, "Grimnar's Vengeance" it fired one, massive, broadside at the Frigate, and the Mast came tumbling down onto the tattered remains of the deck, trapping the captain, who's left leg and hand were nothing more than a bloody pulp. The crippled ship tried to turn to return fire at the dreadnought, but found it'self slowly drifting away, with water rushing into the lower decks, causing the rats to run upwards, in the futile hope of saving themselves. Men jumped into the water, as the Frigate turned, it's keel raising high into the air, and sunk, slowly, into the blue waves.
Warship uses the same rules as Warhammer FB: Warbands.
The Points range is from 100-600 points per Fleet, fleets may ally and combine to form one larger fleet however, and all units skirmish, there is also no limit on war machines that count as a "Special" choice.
As the start of a game, decide which direction is north, then roll a D6, on a 1 the wind is blowing north, on a 2 or 3 then it’s blowing west, if 4 or 5 then East, and if it’s a 6 then South, do the same for current.
There are however, a few differences.
There are 2 main things that are different:
The Shore Batteries.
The Ships provide a completely different environment for the crews to fight in. Therefore, all squads count as skirmishers, and have a maximum regiment size of 4. There is no minimum regiment size. This is to break up the combat phase into several smaller skirmishes, instead of one huge close quarters fight. This also creates a more tactical game. Also, no cavalry may be used. Also, no flyers, chariots, or Monsters may be used. War Machines are vital however.
There are five types of ship in Warhammer FB: Warship:
Sloops are tiny things, with no more than two War Machines each, whereas a massive dreadnought has ten, and can truly rip through any opponent.
The smaller the Ship, the smaller amount of men it can hold, and the fact that it is a lot less robust than larger ships, also means that they will cripple easily.
Here is a small Table for each type of ship (additional Characteristics are explained Later):
C = Capacity, this is the maximum Unit Strength that a ship can hold.
Sp = Speed, this is how many Inches a ship may move (they turn in the same way as a regiment does)
W = Wounds
A = Arnaments, how many War Machines a Ship can hold.
M = Masts, the number of masts on a model.
You may have noticed that the Ships have incredibly high Wound values, this is because when a ship loses all it’s wounds, it sinks, and a ship sinking rarely happens in naval warfare.
What is far more likely however, is that a ship is crippled, maybe even set alight, and is forced to retreat. If a ship is reduced to a third (rounding down) of it’s original wounds it is crippled. If a ship is crippled then it’s speed is reduced to a half, if it still wants to fire. It can (at any point, not just when crippled) move an extra 2D6 in the movement phase, as long as it doesn’t fire, and towards the closest board edge, like it is fleeing, but can rally at any point. If a ship is reduced to a third of it’s Wounds, then the Captain, or whoever has the highest leadership, takes a break test, or flees in the same manner explained above. It can also rally in the usual manner, testing with the Captain, or whoever has the highest, leadership.
Ships can also catch fire, if a weapon, which has flaming attacks, causes a wound, then a ship catches fire, this means it takes a strength 8 hit at the beginning of every turn. Place a Suitable marker for a ship on fire.
A war machine may aim at a ships mast, masts have 3 wounds, and the same toughness as their ship. War Machines can chose to aim at masts, but in doing this they must roll against the crews ballistic skill, if they miss the shot is ignored (it impacts harmlessly in the sea). If they hit then they roll to wound etc. like usual. If a mast loses all it’s wounds, it is destroyed. Mark it with a suitable marker (Removable Masts are a good idea). If all a ships masts are destroyed, then every turn it drifts 2 D6 in the direction of the current. If this brings it off the edge of the battle zone, then it counts of having fled. If it brings it into contact with a harbour or the shore, it takes D6 wounds, and can no longer move. A Ship cannot move voluntarily while drifting. Also, for every Mast a ship loses, it’s speed drops by 5.
War Machines Onboard ships.
War Machines onboard ships may not move position, also, they have a 45 degree Arc of Fire where they can rotate, the centre of the Arc is straight outward at a 90 degree angle from the side, front, or rear of the ship. Any shots by Warmachines (excluding tone throwers) fired at an enemy ship which is 3” away or closer automatically hit if directed on the hull.
Shore batteries can be bought as ordinary War Machines, but instead of one war machine, you get two, for half the points. But! They may only be used if you are the defender of a harbour mission. They also may not move, but have a full 360 degree field of fire. Shore Batteries are great defensive weapons, but are a terrible drain of points, so use them wisely.
When a ship with sails travels in the same direction as the wind, it gains + 2 speed, if it travels against it, it loses –2.