The History of the Fifth Wane is the biography of a woman called Hon Eel, also known as the Artess, and the Dancer. She succeeded in driving barbarians from her lands, bringing boons to civilisation, establishing dynasties and seducing gods. She could not overcome the ancient hatreds of the horse peoples who had once ruled Peloria, and they returned bringing death, destruction, chaos and hell to the Empire.
We have several contemporary records of the period, most notably the "Histories of the Dancer” which is a biography of Hon Eel, but also the massive and pompous "History of My Black Horse Troop” volumes VII which describes Sir Ethilrist’s return to the world, and to some extent XI and XII which describe some of the horrors and phenomena that his Troop encountered, many of which only appeared during the Nights of Horror and, thankfully, have never been seen again. The Pentans have their own memories of the event, horrific and incredible but they are verified by what was recorded in other sources.
The reign of Emperor Magnificus ended in a disaster known as the Nights of Horror, when ancient hatreds and dangerous magics combined to unleash death and destruction upon both the Empire and nomad hordes. Hardly any survived those events, and those that did were scarred by the horrors they experienced.
"What really happened? - the only way to discover is to experience it yourself." - Dragon Pass rules
Muster your armies, hear the whinnying of your steeds, howl your savage war cry. The importance is in the doing.
"Play it now, not then; here, not there; enjoy." - Dragon Pass rules
This game uses the Dragon Pass boardgame rules and counters, with some modifications and a new map to play out the events surrounding the Nights of Horror at the end of the Fifth Wane. You will need to make the mapboard yourself from the hex maps provided.
The idea for the game came to me when I was planning out a "History of My Black Horse Troop Volume VII” campaign arc with player-Heroes taking the roles of Knights, Wizards, or Demon Horses in the service of Sir Ethilrist, starting with their re-emergence from some Underworld into Glorantha and finishing with the construction of Muse Roost. I wanted to simulate the Nights of Horror and it seemed to fit the Dragon Pass rules in scale and so here it is, based largely on the Redline History. You will need the Dragon Pass game to play this Scenario. I’ve used counters from the Dragon Pass game as far as possible, but you will need to make a map board.
Nights of Horror
From the Redline History: "In the first pitched battle the Lunar outposts were overrun, the cities besieged, and screaming shamans again called demons upon the hapless farms of First Blessed.
Preliminary encounters with the regular Lunar army were indecisive and both sides hurriedly sent for reinforcements. The battle escalated as more troops arrived from the West of the Empire and the wily Pentan Chiefs revealed their dangerous allies.”
The game continues until Victory conditions are met.
The game ends when either side meets the victory condition after turn 6.
The Lunars win if they can drive all Pentan tribes out of the unforested parts of both Oraya (purple inside the Glowline and Orange outside it) and First Blessed (Pink inside the Glowline, Yellow outside)
- They win a Magnificent Victory if the Emperor is still alive when this happens.
- They may perform a Dance of Victory if Hon Eel is still alive when this happens.
- They may Sing the Praises of the Goddess if the Yelm children escaped from the board.
The Pentans win if there are no Lunar units in Oraya.
- It is a Real Victory if there are any Pentans in Oraya or First Blessed when there are no Lunar units in Oraya.
- It is a Sad Victory if there are less than 4 Pentans remaining on the board.
Historical OutcomeThe Nights of Horror was a disaster for both sides on the same scale as the Dragonkill. The nomads withdrew from the Redlands to Pent, slaughtering their herds where they stood, and each man is said to have had one hundred wives after that for so many men had died. The Lunar Empire, despite the destruction, enjoyed an era of peace for the external threats from both the East and West had disappeared, with only the south causing some trouble. Instead they turned upon themselves in a series of deadly Dart Wars amongst the nobility.
Lunars deploy firstImperial Yelm Children at Palbar.
Orayan City Militia (10) anywhere in Oraya.
Kastoki – (13) anywhere East of the Arcos on the board.
Pentan Tribes deploy secondAnywhere outside Oraya (Purple and Orange), and East of the Arcos River
1st Turn"In the first pitched battle the Lunar outposts were overrun, the cities besieged, and screaming shamans again called demons upon the hapless farms of First Blessed.”
Special rules: Any Pentans killed return in any Redlands hex in the rally phase.
2nd Turn"Preliminary encounters with the regular Lunar army were indecisive and both sides hurriedly sent for reinforcements.”
Special rules: Any Pentans killed return on the Eastern edge of board in the rally phase.
3rd Turn"The Heartland Corps began to march up the Arcos valley to relieve the surviving Orayan cities. The barbarians slowly gave way before the march, gathering strength.”
Special Rules: The Heartland Corps arrives on Western edge of board during the Lunar Alliance phase.
Any Pentans killed return on the Eastern edge of board in the rally phase.
5th Turn"The Imperial Army of the West, convinced at last that Fronela was permanently under its curse of the Syndic’s ban arrived in First Victory and joined the Heartland Corps.”
Special Rules: Imperial Army arrives on Western edge of the board during the Lunar Alliance phase.
Special Rules: Red Emperor and Hon Eel arrive on Western edge of the board.
|2||Initiative Shifts – reverse the order in which player turns are being taken.|
|3||Giant appears on Southern edge of the board, East of the Arcos river.|
|4||Plague. For each fortress roll one die. If a one is rolled the fortress is hit by plague. Roll for each unit except Treasures, Dragons, Superheroes and Disembodied spirits:|
1, 2 = Unit eliminated
3, 4 = Unit disrupted
5, 6 = no effect.
|5||Barbarian Horde decide they want more loot. May not move Barbarian Horde counters this turn. If attacked they become disrupted.|
|6||Grazelanders (part of Pentan tribes) decide they want to be more traditionalist. May not move Grazeland counters this turn. If attacked they become disrupted.|
|7||Kastoki decide they want more loot. May not move Kastoki counters this turn. If attacked they become disrupted.|
|8||Black Destix appear, Lunar player chooses any empty hex. If already on the board, they are removed.|
|9||Blue Moon School appear, Lunar player chooses any empty hex. If already on board, they are removed. If already eliminated, they remain eliminated.|
|10||Arcos River Floods. The Flood starts in the Named tributary and goes downstream into the Arcos. It lasts one round. Roll D6:
|11||2 units of Broo appear, seeking victims. Each player places one in any empty hex.|
|12||2 units of Scorpion men appear, seeking food. Each player places one in any empty hex.|
|13||Emperor’s Beard changes style. Roll D6:|
Pentan HordePentans score HORROR points that they must to immediately allocate to their three potential allies, and side effects of their activities:
- Capturing Cities (once per city: Palbar, Dorid, Haarzeel, Frangar, Torang, Diavizzi): 10 each.
- Capturing Temple of Reaching Moon once: 5
- Killing Lunar units: 1 each unit eliminated.
- Units occupying First Blessed: 1 for each unit each turn
- Killing Imperial Yelm Children: 20
- Allying Trolls: 10
- Allying Dinosaurs: 10
|Trolls||30||Arrive from the northern or southern edge of the board.|
|Dinosaurs||30||Arrive from the southern edge of the board, East of the Arcos river.|
|Orathorn Magicians||60||When allied they may appear anywhere on the board.|
|Scorpion men*||20||Per counter|
|Ogres*||15||Appear within 3 hexes of Frangar.|
*When the Pentans allocate HORROR points to these Chaos Things, they appear wherever the Pentan player wants, but are not actually controlled by anyone. Perhaps they were hired as mercenaries by either side in desperate times.
THE RED EMPERORThe Red Emperor was a Wizard King, responsible only to his mother, the goddess of the Red Moon. He was immortal in that no natural death could claim him, though he could be slain in combat. This incarnation was fanatical, warlike, had an impressive beard, and was known to History as Magnificus.
HON EELHon Eel the Artess made the history of the Fifth Wane. She defeated barbarians, seduced gods, befriended a dragon, brought maize to the people, overcame monster kings, won beauty contests against goddesses, married kings and started dynasties.
The snake whiskered dragon of Losdolos Angsur had sporadically ravaged Doblian since the Dawn of Time until Hon Eel met it alone and spoke to it. The Dragon disappeared then and had not been seen since.
Hon Eel can call on the Green Dragon to aid her once. She needs to roll a 5 or 6. If successful the Dragon appears in any edge of the board. If unsuccessful, she can attempt again next turn. It can pick up the Imperial Children and take them with it but otherwise Dragonfights as per normal rules. If Hon Eel is eliminated, the Green Dragon will automatically appear, even if Hon Eel makes an Heroic escape.
The Red Emperor can summon the Bat on a roll of a 5 or 6. If successful the Bat appears on any Eastern edge of the board. If unsuccessful, he can attempt again next turn. If the Red Emperor is eliminated the Bat automatically appears, but will need to eat 3 Lunar units to sate its Hunger, as if it had not fed on Black Day.
BLUE MOON SCHOOL
Older than the Lunar Empire, this band of magicians, priestesses, perhaps assassins, were difficult to control, hard to predict, and worshipped an invisible blue Goddess who controlled the tides.
To a civilised Pelorian the Pentans were all alike; sub-human, filthy, stinking of horse. The Pentans themselves were made up of a variety of horse nomad groups and tribes, some traditionalists, some rag-tag bands of exiles from Kralorela and Peloria.
These are represented by the different coloured counters. Pale Green, Yellow, Dark Green, Beige.
Immortal sorcerers who lived in the wastes of Pent with their undead servants. They had Secret Powers that no one knew about. Everyone regrets them using their Powers.
The Orathorn magician represented by the Earthshaker counter can unleash their Secret Power once per game in their exotic magic phase. It must focus the Secret Power on any Chaotic unit within range (10 hexes) which brings the inhabitants of Alien worlds into Glorantha. The units that variously fall out of the sky, erupt out of the earth, or materialise out of thin air are placed by the Pentan player.In this case we have:
The Black Horse Troop and Keener Than: in one stack, anywhere within 10 hexes of the Chaos unit acting as focus for the Secret Power.
Headhangers: Each counter must be placed in an empty hex within 10 hexes of the Chaos unit. They are not stacked.
Men of Darkness, and their misbegotten kin. Their mothers had come from Hell, and lurked in the dark places of the world, notably the Blue Moon Plateau, and the Elder Wilds. They occasionally served as mercenaries, eager to hunt men for food and sport, for they were always hungry.
Corrupted Dragonewts, or their spawn: mindless brutes, or stunted and mutated monsters. Some were bred for combat. They could be controlled and some were bred for combat.
CHAOS THINGS AND HORRORS
Also known as Urgarugars. They feed on souls and are terrifying. They swallow their victim's head allowing them to feed on the soul and use the head's memories.
During the Random movement phase the Headhangers simply move toward the nearest intelligent unit and attack. If units are equally far apart then they move toward the biggest stack. If two stacks are the same, then magic factor total is the deciding factor.
BROOGoatkin, they have long served their Mistress, Malia the mother of disease, and their Mother, Thed the goddess of rape.
During the Random movement phase Broo simply move toward the closest units and attack. If the nearest are equally far then they move toward the stack with the lowest Combat Factor total.
Chaotic monster spawned by monstrous Scorpion Queens. They fed on intelligent beings to instil intelligence in their broods.
During the Random movement phase the Scorpion men simply move toward the nearest intelligent and attack. If they are equally spaced then they move toward the stack with the highest Combat Factor total.
GIANTSAttracted by the smell of carrion, Giants arrive to wreak havoc and eat human flesh.
SIR ETHILRIST AND THE BLACK HORSE TROOP
Sir Ethilrist was a famous fighting man before he was twenty. He formed the world’s finest fighting unit called the White Horse Troop and with them invaded the Underworld. He returned with his renamed Black Horse Troop, mounted on demon horses, during the Nights of Horror centuries after he had first disappeared to plunder Hell.
Ethilrist may be approached by an emissary from either side. Some units are not acceptable as emissaries, other gain a modifier on alliance roll. Keener Than is stacked with the Troop until Ethilrist is allied, at which point he is given to the player who did not ally Sir Ethilrist. He must be placed in any hex within 10 spaces of Sir Ethilrist.
|Red Emperor, Hon Eel||+3|
|Imperial Yelm Children||+2|
|Imperial Army of the West, Heartland Corps||no modifier|
|Kastoki, Orayan City milita||-1|
|Exiles Light Cavalry||+1|
|Sartar City Mounted Militia, Free Army||-2|
Blue Moon School
Grazeland Pony Breeders
Lunar EmpireImperial Yelm Children: Use Twins counter
Hon Eel : Use Beatpot counter (1)
Red Emperor (1)
Imperial Army of the West: Use Imperial Bodyguard (6)
Kastoki: Use Cavalry Corps (13)
Orayan City milita: Use Native Furthese Corps (10)
Heartland Corps: Use Heartland Corps (14)
Black Destix: Use Twin Stars (1)
Lunar Magicians: Use College of Magic (excluding Crimson Bat and Blue Moon School) (14)
Lunar AlliesCrimson Bat (1)
Green Dragon (1)
Blue Moon School (1) appears as random event
Pentan HordeExiles Light Cavalry (2)
Grazeland Pony Breeders (incl. Feathered Horse Queen and Horse Herds. (10)
Barbarian Horde (excluding Jaldon, but including Tribal Magicians) (10)
Sartar City Mounted Militia (6)
Sartar Free Army (Twin Spears, Swordbrothers, Bullocks, Pavis Royal Guard, Bush Children) (8)
Pentan AlliesOrathorn Magicians: Use Exiles magicians (4)
Trolls: Dark Trolls (3), Trollkin (2)
Dinosaurs: Triceratops (3), Brontosaurs (3), Pteranodons (3)
Black Horse TroopBlack Horse Troop (2)
Sir Ethilrist (1)
Hound of Doom (1)
Cloak of Darkness (1)
Keener Than (1)
Chaos ThingsHeadhangers: (chaos) use Dragonewts(21) but with 1 -1 4 0
Broo (chaos): Use Minotaurs (3)
Scorpion men: Use Centaurs (4)