Friday 24 December 2021

Santa versus the Hooligans


Many times over the life of this blog, I have run a Christmas-themed game of Hordes of the Things.  All of these can be found using this link: .

The annual holiday game didn't happen last year (global pandemic, don't ya know!), but we're back in 2021 with a new battle.  This time, Santa's home is under threat from tribes of goblins and their associated wolves & trolls.  He has allied with a barbarian tribe (probably through promises of extreme feasting and loot, I imagine!) to defend against this threat.

The Forces

Each of the 4 bands was an independent 24AP army for Hordes of the Things.  The forces of destruction (two goblin armies) were controlled by my friend Steve, whilst the bringers of light and happiness were led by myself and my son.  I took the barbarians, whilst my son took Santa.  He (my son, not Santa!) had just received a vaccine booster shot the day before and hadn't slept well overnight.  This might go part way towards explaining some of the outcomes in the game!

Santa's Army

Santa's force is a mixture of elves, toy soldiers, fierce ice bears and hordes of snowmen.  It is described in more detail here: .

The Barbarians

My barbarians have a lot of foot warband elements (as might be expected), some archers, some hard-charging panther-mounted knights and a general mounted on a woolly rhino.

The Goblin Raiders

Facing the barbarians we had a goblin force consisting of 2 trolls, hordes of goblins and a large number of wolf riders.  Also, the woods are full of  (unridden) wolves.

[Side note: this force looks like more than 24AP to me.  Oh, well - mistakes may have been made, but if so then it didn't affect the end result, as you will see].

The Goblin Hooligans

The goblin force facing Santa also had two trolls.  It was lead by some greater goblin warbands and had huge numbers of lesser goblins.  Even when deployed, these vandals pushed over the signpost which led to the North Pole, thus earning the title "the hooligans".

The Battle

Most of Santa's army ran forwards as fast as they could.  The sleigh flew past the goblin lines and circled overhead, impervious to all.  On the other flank, the barbarians advanced cautiously, not wanting to fight in the wolf-infested forest.

In return, the goblin warbands and trolls charged off their hill.  They caught the elves before they could shoot and annihilated them.  On the far flank, the ice bears tore through hordes of lesser goblins - but there were always more of the nasty little creatures joining the back ranks.

Santa's snowmen had a minor moment of success when they flanked, outnumbered and swarmed a troll, but this didn't make up for the losses they were taking.

Finally, Santa in his sleigh descended and attacked some of the goblin warband.  Whilst he was very successful against a small part of the goblin host, their general and remaining troll made a run for Santa's cottage!  Desperately, the barbarians attempted to (a) prevent the other goblin army from interfering and (b) move some troops sideways to support Santa.  However, this level of coordination was just too much for their hairy, unwashed brains...

Santa overran his first opponents and flew towards the troll (which had just wiped out Santa's artillery with contemptuous ease).  Nearby, the goblin general eliminated all the snowmen who had been respawned in front of the cottage.

With a shout of triumph, the goblin hooligan's big boss broke into Santa's home.  They pushed over the signpost, cut down the trees, smashed the crockery and ransacked the place (opening all the presents and leaving torn wrappings everywhere).  Oh, dear!

Meanwhile, the ice bears continued to torment the goblin hordes, but just couldn't make headway against the ever-replenishing numbers.  The barbarian knights were cut off and destroyed, though their woolly rhino just kept ploughing forwards, pushing back whatever got in its way.  Finally, Santa was left arguing with a large, smelly troll about the proper meaning of Christmas.  Game over!


Well, that was an abrupt ending!

  • The goblins timed their run for the cottage perfectly.  Santa simply couldn't catch all of them on his own and they breezed through the second echelon stuff that was left to guard the objective.
  • Santa sacrificed some of his troops early in charging forwards; the shooters might have been better employed waiting for the enemy to come to them instead.
  • The ice bears were bogged down fighting with vast hordes of goblins.  Even though they were generally winning each round of combat the bears had a long way to go before they could push the little monsters off the table.
  • The barbarians were mesmerised by the wood full of wolves; fearful of a flank attack if they tried to skirt around it and not confident of their chances if they attacked the forest head on.
  • When the barbarians eventually tried to redeploy, it was too complicated and too late.  All they did was sacrifice their mounted troops for no real gain.

So, a well-deserved victory to the goblin hooligans.  Let's hope that isn't an omen for Christmas 2021!

A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all my readers!