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Looking to craft a finite campaign - help and advice


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Hey all, 

I've been a WHFB, 40K, AoS etc. player on and off for the past 10 years. I happen to be the president of my local wargaming club in the UK and I want to start a finite narrative campaign as we have a lot of AoS players/people with AoS armies but few games happening. Of course, as for any club, the pandemic has been rough for getting games going. While TTS has helped, I also think people are somewhat scared off by the perception of a fairly competitive local meta. 
Now that we're finally allowed to have games in person I want to shake things up and kick things off with a fun, finite narrative campaign. 

Finite Campaign? - What I have in mind is a series of 3 (or 4) large multiplayer games, sort of 40k Apocalypse style. Whole day event kind of things. In the past this style of games has always been a highlight of our society events. Before each game, the teams (of let's say 3-4 people) would go through a choose-your-own-adventure style options list, which would determine the particulars of the battlefield, mission, attacker/defender etc. Things like: Siege of a mighty chaos fort, Survive the night in the undead marshes, Protect and escort a character etc. 

I'll keep this thread for general questions and to get input and advice on running this - it's still a ways in the future but I want to make it fun and playable. I already have plans to alter the rules a bit, for example: Smaller armies with staggered reinforcements but the game lasts 7/8 turns instead of 5. This is based on experience of trying to play a large Apocalypse style game of AoS in the past and it took ages to get through each turn, it wasn't fun - instead, there'll be less models on the table each turn but there'll be more turns, it'll keep the game moving along. 

The first thing I'd be looking for is: 

Does anyone know of anywhere that has a compilation of the Anvil of Apotheosis rules and expansions? It'd be cool for the players to make their own character for this, seeing as it's narrative and all. I'm sure someone must've done a compilation but I haven't been able to find one. 




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This sounds like a great idea!
One big battle, even if spread across several tables (ie. an underground table, for ex), is easier to organize than multiple games over the day.
And you can take all the time to set up amazing terrain.

If you intend to allow for choose-your-own-adventure frameworks, maybe starting from the Matrix Campaigns (GHB 2016, pg 96) could be a good idea. Allows several strategies using a very simple framework to build a battleplan.
Or you could just allow one team (roll-off?) to choose the battleplan of their choice, or add in some of the Narrative Rules effects in the GHB 2018.
This way you could use a lot of things that are ready-made and aren't very complex. Unless, of course, you want to do some rules-writing of your own.

A buddy of mine has a working Excel Sheet for Anvil of Apotheosis, but hasn't been fully updated yet with the new expansions in White Dwarf. There don't seem to be any websites out there that have the whole Anvil character generation fully implemented yet, i think...

Looking forward to see this take off! Nothing like some visually big games, and meeting regularly in a campaign, to get people playing on the regular.

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As a HUGE fan of narrative I love this idea.  Having run 8k & 10k total point games agree that you need either some staggering of units or alternating activations to keep things flowing.  Think it would be a perfect setting for Anvil Heroes too.

Hard part is not knowing what factions are likely to show up.  When we transition away from Zoom League to live games again, for example, we’re going to run a Destruction Civil War Campaign Kragnos v Gordrakk where the army composition of the big blow off battle will be determined by the outcome of the prior matches.  But we have the advantage of saying everybody bring your favorite Destruction list.

Prior to COVID & Zoom League we’d been running a Khorne themed Campaign with Mortals and Daemons lists competing against each other for Skulls for the Skull Throne that would’ve been capped off by a siege battle at the end.  This one had more flexibility in the other armies.

While I didn’t like the actual air combat rules (too much familiarity with the awesomeness that is Wings of War to be taken in by their jumble) since reading it I have absolutely wanted to run a battle where one table is the air battle and the other table is the ground warfare with flying units able to move between the two.  I was thinking of it more as a pairs event requiring strategy and tactics between the two players as to the risk/reward of moving a unit from one to the other but could be potentially incorporated, again if you can convince players to bring flying units.  (Though it raises all kinds of WS as to whether FLY on its own enough to get into the air battle as not sure, for example Squigs are quite that bouncy…).

But I’m digressing.  Looking at your specific set up where you can’t control faction lists my suggestion would be to create distinct objectives.  For example, if we assume 3 players per team, each have the following objectives:

1) Escort - this army starts at one short edge of the able and must get all the way across to the other edge.

2) King of the Hill - this army must take and holds specific area of the battlefield

3) Assassinate - this army must kill one of the opposing army’s generals

The team would be able to choose which player gets each objective.  Above and beyond these specific objectives I would add in some alternative objectives that might force tough decisions.  For example, if we borrow from Starstrike maybe in R2 a dice roll determines where some new objective appears.  If your teams closest units are part of the escort mission to you delay your trip to capture it?  Do you maybe split up your forces and hope units from the other players’s armies can help?  Maybe in R4 the the eye of Khorne falls over the battlefield and there is a bonus for killing the most models.  Do you weaken your “castle” on the hill to try and wrack up a few more kills?  

Just spitballing, sure with time you can come up with even better.  But in my experience the more players involved (I’ve maxed out at 8 ) the more giving each player a unique goal helps as too often players are going to end up on the periphery frustrated if they can’t contribute to the main objective otherwise.

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