Monday 22 July 2019

Return to Grimdal's Tomb part 1

Long ago, there was a great battle at Grimdal's Tomb, between the dwarfs and a race of men, now long forgotten. The men came seeking dwarf treasure that was rumoured to lie in an ancient burial mound; the dwarfs came to protect their ancestor's resting place.

Grimdal's Tomb lies beyond the eastern fringes of the Oakenwood, roughly half way between Oakenheim and the abandoned hold of Helheim. As a sacred dwarf monument, it is not usually marked on maps, lest any treasure hunters or other undesirables should attempt to visit. Dwarfs far away from home, notably rangers and wandering slayers, often visit the site to pay their respects. It was during one such visit that they first discovered another at the site, a dark robed figure poking around under cover of the night sky, who melted away into the shadows when challenged. Alarmed at this intrusion, the dwarfs doubled their patrol of the area, and sure enough, a few nights later, the dark robed stranger was back, but this time he was not alone.

I first discovered Grimdal's Tomb back in 1992, in White Dwarf issue number 153. I had bought the magazine to further investigate the "new" Warhammer Fantasy Battle game - in reality it was the fourth edition, but it was all new to me as an occasional player of Heroquest.

Grimdal's Tomb was the setting for a battle report between Dwarfs and Bretonnians, with a slight twist. Both sides were trying to get into the tomb, thought neither knew that they would also have to contend with the tomb guardians - a troll and a handful of skeletons.

I adapted completely stole this idea for a battle, though I would be using the Erehwon rules. Dwarf rangers and slayers would join forces to face the intruders, with support from the newly painted gyrocopter. It was also a chance for me to play a first battle with the Undead in this system. A necromancer, leading two units of zombies, skeletons and wights, would be attempting to break into the tomb. And the tomb guardians? A hulking ogre and a pack of ghouls would randomly turn up to attack whichever unit was nearest to the tomb entrance.

As the gloom of night descended on the trees, the rangers settled in for a long wait. Accustomed to the darkness of their underground homes, they could easily see across the clearing to the stone monument of the sacred tomb. Hours ticked by, and it seemed that it would be another fruitless vigil, when a chill descended on the glade. Snorri drew his cloak around him, and lighting his pipe was surprised to see his breath in the night air. It was mid summer, yet suddenly as cold as a mountain peak. Furtive movement across the clearing caught his eye. He nudged his companion to be ready to give the signal. The dark robed intruder had returned to Grimdal's Tomb.


Andrew said...

Can't wait, that was one of my all time favorite battle reports!

Anonymous said...

Love your maps....simple yet so evocative.

Nord said...

Thanks guys. I only have one physical map on paper, which I can then tinker with in photo apps to add colour, texture, etc. At some stage in the future I will expand and need more maps of new lands :)

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