Monday 04 February 2019 – Strolling through Moria, the Fellowship discovers Balin’s Tomb (issue #21). Grieved by the discovery of the demise of the dwarves, Gimli picks up Balin’s axe, ready for vengeance on some goblins. This axe is actually Durin’s axe and in this campaign, Gimli will get the full benefit from this from this point on. This means he may re-roll one of his dice when determining who wins a fight and gets +1 To Wound. Gimli will not have to wait long to get what he wants …
The goblins come rushing through the gate. Legolas trades positions with Gimli to allow him to shoot each turn. The hobbits run towards the back to hide behind a pillar. Evil wins if just a single Good model dies in this scenario and Merry and Pippin are particularly prone to dying, each having just one Wound and one Fate. Gandalf throws some sorcerous blasts and Aragorn fires his bow. It doesn’t take long before the goblins break through and combats ensue. Some sneaky goblins move left, ignoring the mighty heroes and instead running towards the hobbits. Fortunately, Legolas is able to shoot these down and Gandalf runs towards the hobbits to protect them. The hobbits aren’t totally defenceless and manage to kill a goblin by throwing a stone. The three combat heroes are entangled and surrounded by goblins, causing some problems for Boromir. Due to the ‘Shadow of the Ring’ rule, Borimir loses a Might, Will and Fate point at the start of each scenario, meaning he has no Will and Fate left and ‘only’ has 3 Might points.
The Cave Troll also comes through the door, giving Gimli a run for his money, rending and nearly killing him. Some poor dice rolls by the troll save Gimli from this fate. A goblin captain has made it over to Legolas, winning the fight but not wounding him. At least those three arrows per turn won’t be fired during these fights.
The goblin horde diminishes and in the next turn the cave troll is slain. Good wins if 20 Evil models are slain and this occurs, causing the remaining few goblins to flee out of the room, leaving the Fellowship exhausted but also relieved, for they all remain alive and well.
This was a fun scenario. Plenty of killing and lots of fun and different things to do. Throwing stones, shooting arrows, throwing throwing axes, using the troll chain, using sorcerous blasts. Everyone had their moment. The cave troll was scary at first and I really feared for Gimli’s life, but once that was over the troll was quickly disposed of. I think the Fellowship has quite the advantage here, though if Evil had managed to kill just a single model they would already have achieved their victory. I think this would be a fun scenario for getting people into the game. It’s fun and quick and not too complicated.
The terrain (Balin’s Tomb) comes from the company Ziterdes. I didn’t paint or add anything, so it comes pre-painted. On their website it’s called ‘Dwarf Kingdoms’. It’s more expensive than most of their other products and a bit smaller and narrower than what is suggested in the DeAgostini book (same goes for most of the other versions of this scenario, I believe), but it is beautifully detailed and being complete (for me at least) right out of the package is a huge plus in my book. I think it would have been nice if it was just a little bit broader, especially at the doorway, but it’s perfectly playable in its current state.
Having escaped the assault on Balin’s Tomb, the Fellowship wants to leave Moria as quickly as possible, rushing towards the Bridge of Khazad-Dûm. They are not yet aware of the ancient evil that will haunt them there …