Orenda is a word that means "spiritual energy" in the Huron (Wyandot) language, and has often been used to refer to gods and spirits in the Iroquois tribes as well. Although any divine spirit could correctly be referred to as Orenda, the name is most commonly used to refer to the Creator or Great Spirit, or, among Christian Iroquois people, to God.
|Stone Coat represented by a WOTC figure.|
This time our playtest took a huge leap forward in our estimation. It was good to finally get the close combat put to rest and move ahead with something that better represented the game we are trying to create. We added three major things for this playtest and we had a great time playing the game.
|This group collects a "Furs" marker.|
2. We added Magic or Orenda to the game. So far we have six simple spells made up and a simple spell system which we tested and it underwent some tweaking during the game. We did enjoy the element that this system brought to the game and it worked very well. For those that are wargaming purists this system can be totally left out of the game and you would never miss it. For those that would like to add the fantastical element of Native American Mythology to your games then you will enjoy this system.
|The Shaman, supported by a group, works his Orenda.|
Using Orenda in the game can only be done by the Shaman. Shamans have a CV of two and an Orenda Value of three. The Shaman and his use of Orenda in the legendary pre-contact period is considered to be very ritualistic. It requires chanting and dancing which then build up of mystical energy before a Shaman can utilize this energy to create a spell. Also, it requires a Shaman with experience in Orenda to actually realize that he has enough energy built up to actually create a spell and then use it appropriately. So in game terms the Shaman cannot move or attack or be attacked while performing his ritual. He is generally left at the back of the table in a relatively secure area to work his Orenda. Once he has enough power built up he must choose which spell to cast and then he must make a successful Orenda roll of three or less on a d6 to successfully create his spell. If his Orenda roll is not successful then the spell is not used up but rather the Shaman has not realized he has enough power built up or he is lost in his chanting and dancing and continues to grow more power for other spells.
Each phase that a Shaman takes the action "Create a Spell" he rolls 1d6 and places that d6 on a spell sheet. In this way on his second action he can roll another d6 or pick up the first d6 he rolled and then roll 2d6 if he is not happy with the roll he got on the first phase. On the third phase he is up to 3d6 and this continues until he attempts to cast a spell or he is interrupted or must move. There are three different levels of power that can be rolled on the d6, and different spells use different levels in combination depending on their effects in the game. A roll of one on a d6 is a Wolf, a roll of two or three on a d6 is the owl and a roll of four, five or six on a d6 is a Turtle. You roll your dice and line them up on the Spell Sheet as you deem appropriate as the controlling player.
Currently there are six "spells" in the game. These are "Fly like an Owl" which allows you to change one warrior to an owl which may then move wherever they want on the tabletop to reappear as a human on the next turn. "Shape of the Wolf" which allows the shaman to turn himself into a wolf and fight with a CV of 5. The Shaman ignores the first hit done to him but loses his wolf form when he receives a wound. "Summon the Stone Coat" is the third spell and it allows the Shaman to summon a Stone Coat model that appears on a random board edge and has a CV of 5. This is an interesting spell because if there is more than one shaman on the board then an opposed roll is made each turn to see who controls the creature. Creatures move at the end of turn after all players have finished their moves.
The last three spells all affect the warriors in the Warband. There is "Speed of the Deer" which adds 2" of movement to any group. "Heart of the Moose" which allows all warriors in a group to ignore their first wound. Finally their is "Claws of the Bear" which increases the CV of all warriors in a group by +1 level. We will be further playtesting this system over the next few months to better refine these rules.
|Failed Nerve Test!|
Next weeks blog will provide and AAR of the game we played. In other news, we made a video which focuses on running a turn and melee so you can see how this works. I need to sit down and edit the video and put in my narrative so I will be working on that project over the coming weeks.
Also, we are set to start our Kickstarter this week. Our goal is to have the Kickstarter up and running by Friday, but it may be Saturday, depending on how my day goes today. We have decided to only include the figures in the Kickstarter because we have over 40 sculpts ready to go. As you can tell from these blogs the rules are still being developed and although they are moving ahead they will not be done in the foreseeable future. So we are running a Kickstarter in order to get these miniatures into the hands of our followers and we like the idea of the momentum that can be built using a Kickstarter. So stay tuned and we will publish the preview link for the Kickstarter later this week.