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War of the Roses Campaign

For sometime I have been looking into a Wars of the Roses campaign. The difficulty I was having was that the fighting was not about territory but about power and there were no real geographical front lines. I then remembered I had tucked away an old copy of the board game "King Maker". To use the game and refight the battles created using DBA would I felt be far to complex and time consuming. Also not everyone has a copy of "Kingmaker". So I had a think and came up with this following idea.

The boxed games has a number of card decks one being a Nobles deck. There are 11 main nobles and 13 lesser ones. If you do not have "Kingmaker" the main nobles are
Earls
Arundel (Fitzalan)
Northumberland (Percy)
Devonshire (Courtenay)
Warwick (Neville)
Shrewsbury (Talbot)

Dukes
Norfolk (Mowbray)
Lancaster (Plantagenet)
Buckingham (Stafford)
Suffolk (Pole)
York (Plantagenet)
Somerset (Beaufort)

The lesser nobles are
Lords. Howard,Clifford,Berkeley,Cromwell,Grey,Bourchier,A udley,Greystoke,Herbert,Hastings,Scrope,Holland andStanley.

From this you should be able to make noble cards. The game also has round discs which bare the coat of arms for each individual noble, these are needed but can be made just by righting there names on pieces of card.

Also 6 other counters from the game are used, 3 red rose showing Henry of Lancaster, Edward of Lancaster and Margaret of Anjou and 3 white rose showing Richard of York, Richard of Gloucester and Edward of March. Again these can be readily made.

Also needed are the event cards. These contain various mechanics to make "Kingmaker" work there are 83 of these. Out of these the 17 Plague cards are needed, as are the 10 Free Move cards. The remainder have no impact on our campaign but are kept to bulk out the pack and are treated as "No result". All but 4 of the plague cards show nobles names that have been killed. Usually three on each card. If making the cards yourself just write three nobles names on each card spreading them evenly. Leave the four blank plague cards blank.

Set up.

One player is York the other Lancaster. Deal out to each player the main noble cards, then deal out the lesser noble cards. Each player should have 12 nobles. The Lancaster player is then given his "Royal counters" and the Yorkist player his.

For the purposes of this campaign it is assumed each noble brings 4 elements of the army to his chosen cause.

Therefore the first battle is set up as normal for a DBA 12 element a side battle. Each player selects three nobles (No more than three) to take part, one must be a main noble. He will be the general. Select the three nobles identity discs and place them directly behind the element that is representing them in the battle. Place the actual nobles cards behind your edge of the board.
If you wish you can place one "Royal" counter on one of the noble units with the noble. If you do your army can add 2 to each pip role as long as the total does not exceed 6.

The battle is played out as a normal DBA engagement. However any noble element that is killed has his card removed and placed in a "Dead Pile" If an element has a royal counter attached is destroyed that Royal is dead also.
Battle victory conditions are as for normal DBA. At the end of the battle any Nobles element on the losing side including the generals that is still in base to base contact with an enemy is captured as is a Royal if attached. The winner can now decide what to do about his captives, he can execute and they are placed in the dead pile. To do this roll a D6 4,5,6, he is executed, and placed in the dead pile, 1,2 he escapes and goes into a "Uncommitted Pile". A Royal captured is always executed. Any remaining nobles on the losers’ side are transferred to the "Uncommitted Pile" (This represents them losing heart and having had their forces depleted). The loser keeps any surviving Royal.

After the battle each player draws an event card. If the card is not a plague or Free Move card it is discarded. If it is plague, check your own nobles if you own one or more of the nobles on the card he is placed in the "Uncommitted pile" If it is a blank plague card, shuffle your nobles, let your opponent pick a card. That noble is placed in the "Dead Pile". If you pick a "Free Move" card you can draw a noble randomly from the "uncommitted pile" Roll a die on a roll of 1, he promptly deserts your cause and goes over to the other side. Hand your opponent the noble card.

The object of the game is to be the only side with at least one Royal alive and one noble. The game is lost if all your sides Royals are killed or if you have no noble cards in your hand after drawing an event card. If you are in that position you either have no Royal pretenders to support or you have lost the support of the nobles. Either way enjoy your walk to the scaffold!!!

You include a royal in a battle if you wish, if however you did not use one in the previous battle you must for the next battle roll a D6, 3,4,5,6 a Royal must appear in the next battle.

Remember also that if you still have a main noble he must appear as the general in battle.

If the event pack runs out, just shuffle and use again.

As can be seen there will come a time when a player has less than 3 noble cards, if this happens he can only field 8 elements, and if he only has one noble he can field only 4 elements. The player can choose any elements he wants to make up the 8 or 4.

This gives a campaign that involves a number of battles with constant twists of fortune and that they are strongly influenced by what happens between battles.

There is a minimum of record keeping so the campaign can be stored away just making sure the cards are kept in their correct piles. It can then be resumed as required.

For a shorter campaign use only the main noble cards, this gives only six cards a side at the start.


 

 

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