Rules for Skirmishes

The unique One Ring rules set invites tinkering and secondary creation. Whilst The One Ring works brilliantly as written, we provide this forum for those who want to make their own home-brewed versions of the rules. Note that none of these should be taken as 'official'.
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Rules for Skirmishes

Post by Eluadin » Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:14 am

The Harrowing of the Vales

The Harrowing of the Vales assumes the year 2946 following the guidance given in The One Ring: Adventures over the Edge of the Wild. The material presented in this supplement covers small engagements and conflicts.

As you would expect in the Vales of Anduin, these small conflicts include border skirmishes between Beornings and their rival Northmen, the Viglunds. Goblin-raiders from the Misty Mountains occasionally descend on Mountain Hall, and Woodmen mountain-fighters hunt the mountain crevasses for Goblin bolt-holes in retaliation. Warg-packs let loose from Werewolf Hallow often hunt the Upper West Vales, and in turn the free cottars respond to the Black's Call for a weapon-take.

Not all the battles in the Wild find the free Folk on the defensive. In the Western Eaves, Woodmen warbands still hunt spiders in force in an attempt to thin out colonies. When the foemen of the North threaten the Old Ford or the High Pass, Beornings muster under the local chieftain and move in force against the threat.

Nonetheless, a Loremaster should always keep in mind that a 'move in force' is not the fielding of an army. Battles that deploy large numbers of troops on multiple fronts (areas of engagement) lie many years off. Sieges are no different. The conflicts of the Vales remain disorganized and small in comparison to what happens south of the Wild and west of the Misty Mountains.

Read on and enjoy!

Using narrative time, this supplement breaks down a battle into a number of elements. These elements provide an easy structure for Loremasters to narrate the high drama and tragic consequences of conflict in Wilderland. They provide the same sort of 'break' in the narrative as journeys, but with an enhanced dramatic content. Based on the Battles and Siege System James Brown and I developed, Harrowing grew out of the conflicts that challenged my player-heroes in our campaign, Departures and Homecoming. (The One Ring General discussion contains some of my posts on and background for the campaign.) My group had a pretty good time playing out small engagements, so I thought to share this "battles supplement" with the wider forum.

Comments and feedback always welcome. If you're familiar with our Mythic Battles, then this will be familiar. The same "system" for battles underlies both.
Last edited by Eluadin on Sun Apr 22, 2018 12:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Rich H
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Re: Rules for Skirmishes as an add-on to The Heart of the Wild

Post by Rich H » Tue Apr 17, 2018 11:20 am

Going to enjoy reading this.

Quick question before I do, is it intended as a potential replacement to what you worked on with James or as an addition to it? I'm assuming its a replacement - ie, another set of optional/houserules separate to what you did with James (although using similar rules). Yes?
TOR resources thread: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=62
TOR miniatures thread: viewtopic.php?t=885

Fellowship of the Free Tale of Years: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=8318

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Re: Rules for Skirmishes as an add-on to The Heart of the Wild

Post by Eluadin » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:11 pm

Rich, greetings from the other side of the pond!

Harrowing doesn't replace Mythic Battles. Its another application of the battles and siege system we developed for TOR.

Mythic Battles intended large vistas, and grand engagements. Providing more space for the Loremaster to take and use in their games, Mythic Battles is very open-ended from an application point of view. Multiple areas of engagement, scales of warfare that (almost) defy the impact a single player-hero can make without buildup in a campaign of Standing and Wisdom/Courage.

With Harrowing, I had a specific campaign with a known start and end in the Vales of the Anduin. For that I tightened the mechanics, and the scale of our battles system. That is, focused the point of view from where we were working with Mythic Battles, and simplified the means of resolution. :D

James and I continue to create alternate scenarios, and new use cases from those core battle resolution mechanics invented years ago. Like Tolkien, I guess we never "canonized" a fixed view point to our vision.

Long fireside answer for a great question. (That's what happens when I sit down for tea and biscuit in the morning.)

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Re: Rules for Skirmishes as an add-on to The Heart of the Wild

Post by Corvo » Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:13 pm

Thanks for sharing: I'm going to read it with interest

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Re: Rules for Skirmishes as an add-on to The Heart of the Wild

Post by Agnot » Tue Apr 17, 2018 7:06 pm

This looks to be just what the doctor ordered. I've been wanting to run a battle between the Beornings and Viglundings and this should fit the bill nicely. Thank you for sharing.

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Re: Rules for Skirmishes as an add-on to The Heart of the Wild

Post by Falenthal » Wed Apr 18, 2018 5:49 pm

One of those documents I'll print down in paper to have a better read. Thanks a lot for the work done.

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Re: Rules for Skirmishes as an add-on to The Heart of the Wild

Post by jamesrbrown » Sat Apr 21, 2018 5:37 pm

I'm so glad you shared this Scott! After all this time, re-reading this has sparked a new desire to continue our creation and let it evolve further.
Please visit my blog, Advancement Points: The One Ring Files, for my TOR Resources

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Re: Rules for Skirmishes

Post by Butterfingers » Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:47 pm

I am very interested in using these skirmish rules at some point, probably with the Viglund situation at least, and most likely with orc attacks against Woodmen... maybe eventually escalating to the battle rules.

But in the mean time, how would you say these rules mesh with the Burh & Treasure rules deviced by Arthur? I haven't read the skirmish rules through yet, just skimmed them, but I'd like to add this extra layer of fortifications and training if possible (something for the companions to throw treasure at too!) :ugeek:

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