Last Sunday, after a long absence from the game, we fielded our Dragon Rampant armies again to play Scenario A: Gory Bloodbath on the Plains of Doom and gave it a short review.
We both played armies of 34 points each instead of the recommended 24 points. David used his High Elves, which he presented in a previous post. I dusted off my Chaos Warriors and Tzeentch Daemons I usually use in One Page Rules Age of Fantasy and initially in Warhammer Age of Sigmar. It all started with a 40 € Start Collecting box of Slaves to Darkness, which I expanded upon over time. Each time I play this army, I want to field them all. Hence, the 34-point game.
Not having played the Dragon Rampant for quite a while, we decided to play the basic kill scenario “Gory Bloodbath on the Plains of Doom” and give it a short review. We did decide against the quests since we were not fluid with the game.
Scenario A: Gory Bloodbath on the Plains of Doom
We set up both forces on the long edges of the table. David being the attacker, set up first. And also started the first round. That’s when all went wrong for my Chaos dudes.
We introduced a fun terrain twist: My fire daemons could walk through lava, whereas it was blocking for all other units. My chariot was blocked by all terrain. All my other troops (except the a fore mentioned fire daemons) could walk through the blood pools, albeit being difficult terrain. The Elves on the other hand would treat the blood pools as impassable.
After setup was done, which always takes quite some time with all of our games. We want them to look as immersive as possible.
A game of dragon Rampant
During the majority of the game, I was rolling so low I was barely able to activate more than 1-2 units in my turn.
The game dragged on with David’s camping Elves shooting at my units before they could even engage in proper melee.
My Daemons (Ravenous hordes of 1 point each) and my Chaos Sorcerer Lord were left at their starting positions, since they never activated. After all my best units (General on Gorebeast Chariot, Chaos Knights and warriors as well as my Chaos spawns (Lesser warbeasts) were killed, I was finally able to activate my daemons and Sorcerer Lord.
Very quick into the game it was clear that the Elves would win. Since I have a lot of units, It took David’s Elves some time to kill enough of them to win. But that was only a matter of grinding through enough rounds.
Let me say, Dragon Rampant is a good fantasy miniature tabletop wargame. Once you grasp the basics, you’ll be able to play it pretty much on auto pilot, without having to flip through the rules too often. Just make sure to print all your warband information on your warband roster and have your Quick reference sheet at hand.
I find the activation system in Dragon Rampant somehow too luck driven compared to Lion Rampant 2E and Xenos Rampant. Maybe it’s due to the choice of my units which activate at 5 and 6. Maybe I just rolled very poorly … It wouldn’t be the first time.
Suffice it to say I haven’t found this game that exciting. Although I don’t think of Dragon Rampant as a bad game. Far from it. I like the easy rules, the fun approach and the free form army building. But I personally prefer the more balanced and alternative activation style of One Page Rules Age of Fantasy. Then again maybe I will completely review my army list one day. I might also switch back to 24 points.