Monday, 30 May 2011

The Battle of Minas Keptie

I was idly trawling through some of the wargaming related pics on my laptop when I came across a series of photos that I took of a Lord of the Rings game that I set up at Kingsleypark Manor for the boys a couple of years back. It was before War of the Ring came out, so it was the Strategy Battle Game rules (SBG) that we were playing (so no movement trays!).

So given that painting output has again slowed to a crawl and The Plastic Soldier Company Limited 1/72nd scale Panzer IV's haven't arrived yet for review, I'll put these pics up to while away the time a bit (apologies for some of the  pics being a wee bit out of focus).


Okay, so there are no high walls and towers like it's big neighbour, Minas Tirith, but the pretext behind the game was that this small band of Gondor Warriors led by his nibs, Boromir of Gondor, with a makeshift barrier across the road, had to defend the settlement, on the border of Gondor and Rohan from this....

The bounders are even sneaking through the Forest!
Surely there can be no hope for the Free Peoples?????

As in any good cowboy movie, the Cavalry to the Rescue!!

Theoden and Theodred and their respective Eoreds arrived on the Uruks' left (Western) flank (the actual point of entry had been randomly determined by the roll of a d8, following the points of the compass). And to the North, the sounds of hooves could also be heard and through the wobbly camera focus, rides Eomer and his Eored.

Undeterred by this new threat the Horde of Isengard continued their advance against the beleagured defenders.

Theoden and Theodred, in their eagerness to bring battle to the enemy only succeeded in getting in each other's way. With not enough room to pass through the Western Valley or over the ridge, the Rohirrim started to move South to threaten the rear of the Isengard army.

The Rohirrim break over the Western Ridge and launch themselves downhill into the hapless foe

But will it be too little to late??? Already the battle rages along the meagre defences of the settlement and some of the enemy have managed to break through.

Boromir, alone by the barricade, blows the Horn of Gondor in desperation

The Rohirrim, now with space to manouevre, ride down the enemy wherever they can be found

At the end, after several long hours of play, necessitated by having to move so many single figures, the desperate defenders of Minas Keptie had hung on, just.

The Gondor garrison were on the point of breaking but the pressure of the Rohirrim on the Uruks was starting to tell, the strength of Cavalry riding down an infantry opponent being a key factor in many of the combats.

We haven't played such a large SBG game since that time, though I have come across some pics of a re-fight of Helm's Deep that the boys played so I will try posting them up sometime. The advent of War of the Ring and the use of movement trays would have no doubt speeded up the Minas Keptie battle and made it easier to move so many figures, but despite the drawbacks of having so many single figures, I kinda like the sort of "chaotic" look that the battlefield has as a result.


  1. Excellent report! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Great looking game. Sounds like a fun day.

  3. The rules are great for this type of gaming, you can use it with so many other periods.

  4. nice shots put there, looking great

  5. OOH I like the look of this. The houses look very nice....(he says with an eye for copying some of the designs ;-D)

  6. Only one word to describe such a report. Sexy!!! Really great battle, pictures, and an effective retelling.

    And I agree. I love the chaotic (natural?) look of clashing battle lines in LotR SBG. Even if I dont really enjoy moving each and every fig, and moreso remembering which have moved or shot during your own turn!

  7. Great report! Fun pictures and text to what looks like a fun battle.
    I'd love to see more like this, as I'm contemplating LotR for the near future.

  8. Great report! I have had a lot of fun with LOTR SBG, but when you fight this big of a battle, it bogs down a bit.