"The beatings will continue until morale improves." - attributed to the Commander of the Japanese Submarine Force

The Norse Gaels

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Starting Roster


Kneeling before a plain stone altar, hands clasped together, eyes tightly closed, Leif prayed once again. Though there was no sound, his lips mouthed the words of his devotion and he knew the Lord was listening. A few feet behind him, head bowed low, his dutiful companion Brother Thomas, a man closer to God than many, mirrored his pose. The austere simplicity of the old chapel, its ancient stone solid against the morning mist, strengthened their ritual. The saint who had built this sanctuary on the old hill overlooking the sea had chosen wisely. Here, God was close by.

Outside, becoming restless, the movement of one of the horses was threatening to break the silence. It had been a long and hard journey to get here so early in the morning. Two days earlier, a stranger from the Northlands had arrived at Leif's castle, bringing word of his oathsworn, Gunnblasdt, the Godi of Iceland. A call for them to join forces to raid and plunder enemy lands, perhaps even to conquer them together. Timely, too, for it was said that the armies of other lands were also on the move, to raid and conquer. And so, with Brother Thomas as always at his side, he had come to this most holy place to pray, leaving orders for his men to make the necessary preparations for the battles to come. Soon, his blood brother would be here and together they would go to war.

Roster after fighting off the Scots invasion, Campaign Season 1

Campaign Season 1

The Norse-Gaels choose to raid Jutland (Danish Vikings), while in turn they are attacked by invading Scots and Anglo Danes, and raided by the Welsh.

Leif made his plans for a venture; a raid across the eastern sea to Denmark, where it was told there was gold for the taking. His plan was to first join forces with his blood brother, and so he delayed, awaiting the Godi's arrival. But the weather eased, and spring came, and there was no sign of approaching longships from the north. The Vikings of Iceland seemed to have more enthusiasm for business elsewhere. With no sign of Gunnblasdt's arrival, the Lord of the Norse Gaels at last made plans for his fleet to set sail alone.

Invaded by the Scots

At home, as the days passed, Leif's watchmen became ever more wary as they scoured the horizon for approaching longships, but the first attack of the year came from the land. Blood-sworn as his enemy, a force of Scots led by the Laird of Clan Tavish invaded across the northern border.

Leif's response was swift. He assembled his forces in an area of sacred ground around a small church, where accompanied by his priest he prayed for God's guidance and fortitude in the battle to come. It seemed that his prayers were answered, for in the early hours, when the two armies met, the fight went his way, and the Scots were defeated, sent back home to their own lands.

The Norse Gaels successfully defend Sacred Ground against the invading Scots. They gain 1 CVP and +1 Reputation.

Roster after raiding Denmark, Campaign Season 1

The Raid on Denmark

It was time for the Norse Gaels to go on the offensive, and their fleet of longships travelled north and east, avoiding the land of the Scots and crossing the treacherous sea to Denmark. Landing on the coast of Jutland, they found a nearby village to plunder, and set about burning its buildings and crop fields. Their attack was swift, and the peasants tending the land were slow in calling for help. Though some Vikings fought to bravely defend their land, reinforcements only arrived as the attackers withdrew with their plunder, returning to Strathclyde with their spoils.

The Norse-Gael expedition to Denmark is a success. They Harry and Burn a Danish village and get away before Viking reinforcements arrive. They gain 1 CVP and +1 Wealth.

Roster after defending against Anglo-Danes, Campaign Season 1

Defending the Pass against Anglo-Danish Raiders

Within weeks of their arrival home, the Norse Gaels were faced with another threat. A force of Anglo-Danes, jealous of the neighbour, invaded Strathclyde across the border of Rheged. Fuelled by rumours of the weakness of Leif's men in battle, Aarold Steptoeson's Warband met the Norse Gaels at a high pass in that mountainous land. Leif showed himself to be Lucky again, as his men held off the Anglo-Danish invader, defending the pass successfully and defeating Aarold's Warband.

Leif's men successfully Defend the Pass against the Anglo-Danes. They gain 1 CVP and +1 Reputation.

Roster after the Welsh raid, Campaign Season 1

The Welsh Attack Strathclyde

Later that year, close to the end of the campaigning season, the Norse Gaels were attacked again. This time, Welsh raiders attacked northward into Strathclyde, in an attempt to capture livestock from the rich farms close to the coast. Once again, Leif's army was mobilised and travelled south to meet the enemy warband. The Welsh, habituated to attacking from the mountains and disappearing as quickly as they came, had escaped with their plunder by the time Leif's main force arrived, and though seen off, took many Norse Gael cattle with them.

The Norse Gaels unsuccessfully defend Cattle Raid against the Welsh. They lose one point of Wealth and must temporarily dismiss one of the units of Warriors on their roster.

At the end of the Campaign Season the Norse Gaels roll Upgrade Levy on the Fate table. As they have no Levy on their Roster, this is ignored.

Roster after defend options, Campaign Season 2

Campaign Season 2

During the winter, emissaries from the Normans arrived at Leif's court, seeking an alliance. They were welcomed, and Leif, flattered by their attention and their opinion of his as the most powerful of the nations, felt he had no alternative but to accept. The alliance would not affect his plans, though, for this year the Norse Gaels had no intention to go to war.

This season, the Norse-Gaels choose to defend. Their faction gains one point of wealth from increased trade which means their temporarily dismissed Warrior unit becomes available again. Leif then recruits a further four Warriors who are added to this unit.

Roster at the end of Campaign Season 2

At the end of the Season the Norse Gaels roll Warlord Experience on the Fate Table. Leif chooses to roll for a new Special Rule and gets The Great.

Roster after the Irish raid of Strathclyde, Campaign Season 3

Campaign Season 3

This year the Norse Gaels plan to follow-up their raid of Denmark during Campaign Season 1 with a full-scale invasion of Jutland. Before their plans are put into effect, though, they are themselves raided by the Irish in Strathclyde.

The Irish Raid

The cunning Irish unexpectedly landed on the shores of Strathclyde early in the year. Leif's men, distracted by their preparations for the invasion of Denmark, were taken by surprise, and their response to the raiders was slow. They were able to see off the raiders without major loss, but the Irish escaped with valuable plunder at the cost of the Norse Gael coffers.

The Norse Gaels lose Harry and Burn against the Irish. Leif loses one point of Wealth, reducing his total score to 2. The Norse Gaels also lost one Hearthguard and two warriors, all Dane axe-equipped. Leif recruited four warriors but has to temporarily dismiss one of his warrior units from his roster because of his depleted Wealth.

Roster after the invasion of Jutland, Campaign Season 3

The Battle of Jutland

Despite their defeat to the Irish, the Norse Gaels quickly get back to the business of their original plan: the invasion of Denmark. Their boats laden, they take the long sea journey from Strathclyde around the coast of Scotland and across the eastern sea to Jutland. Their invasion force is small, but determined.

Disappointed that the Danes had not given the tribute he had demanded in advance, and hadn't even provided breakfast, Leif moved his warband inland across the open land of the Danish plain, meeting his enemy in an open area between some hills, and battle ensued. The fight was swift and bloody, ending in a mighty victory for Leif's men, and has been recorded in detail here by our skald, who watched from a safe distance along with some hungry ravens.

The Norse Gaels win Clash of Warlords against the Danish Vikings. Leif gains +1 point of Land and control of the province of Jutland, plus 1 CVP for winning the battle. Leif lost 1 hearthguard (Dane axe) and 1 hearthguard(not Dane axe). Because this means that one of his two-man hearthguard units now only has one man, this lone hearthguard must merge with another hearthguard unit, and Leif chose for him to join the unit with Dane axes. The Norse Gaels also lost 2 warriors (Dane axe) and 2 warriors (javelins). Leif recruited 2 hearthguard as a new unit with Dane axes.

Roster after the invasion of Strathclyde, Campaign Season 3

The Welsh Invade

Alsmost as soon as they return home, the Norse Gaels find themselves under threat of a Welsh invasion.

Celebrations over the Norse Gael conquest of land in Denmark were not to last long. Within weeks, word arrived at Leif's court of a fleet of Welsh longships that had landed on the coast at Strathclyde, with news that a strong warband led by their King, Caradog, was moving steadily inland along the mountain tracks. Hurriedly, Leif raised a force to defend, choosing to meet this enemy and hold them at a narrow mountain pass that their route could not avoid.

Arriving in good time, Leif's men positioned themselves to form a strong defensive line across the path the invader was taking. If they held their ground, there was little chance of the Welsh breaking through.

But the Welsh were canny fighters, used to making war in mountainous terrain and well equipped with weapons they could use at a distance, including arrows and javelins - and worst of all - Welsh insults. Norse Gaels are known for their tempers, and they do not take being insulted well. As the Welsh lined up to face them on the opposite side of the pass, their insults were impossible for the Norse Gael temperament to resist, and as they became angrier the defenders were gradually drawn out of position and lured into the fray. Battle was close, with men falling on both sides, and it appeared that the Dane-axe armed warriors would make a breakthrough against the peasant archers the Welsh had brought with them. But just as they were about to succeed, a charge from Caradog himself caught them off guard and forced the defenders back. It was all the advantage the Welsh needed, and enough to force the defenders back down the slope, giving up the pass, and in due course, the province of Strathclyde, to the invader.

The Norse Gaels lose the province of Strathclyde, but as this is a home province it is not enough for them to lose a point of Land. Leif lost two Dane axe armed warriors and one javelinman. He recruited four warriors with Dane axes.