Mars is dying...

Mars is dying...

Not through fault or neglect or wicked reason, not even because of the Gods; though some would say this is so. Mars is dying because it is old.

For time beyond count, our world has floated with the orb of the sun god, basking in the everwarmth that it provides, the Martian brothers sailing around giving constant company.

The Ancients warned the death of Mars might be so. Long, long ago; before the Storm. It is said the Storm lasted for an age or more: I for one, do not believe this to be true even though the clan elders warn me against foolish words.

There are still some Ancient writings in the deep deserts for those who wish to learn and are willing to brave sandstorms and the creatures that live there. Most of our knowledge from before the Storm comes from stories told around the clan fires, told again and again, embellished ever so lightly with each clan teller so who knows what is true and what is not.

With each storm season, the Ancient houses and temples disappear and reappear so fast that is easy to loose them completely, Gods know how large their cites were or what final secrets they contain. Three whole clans have been lost searching for the chief city with no sign or call from them these long years past.

But now we have new troubles and concerns. The Earthers have come to Mars: to steal and pillage what they can and to take it away to their blue world. Curse them to the Gods! They have no right, no honour and no need to be here. Like parasites they come here destroying whatever they touch and leaving mayhem in their wake.

They must be sent back across the sky ocean to their blue world.

They must be stopped.

It must happen now!

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Some new releases!

We've been waiting a while to get these done but they are now here, the first of the City Martian troops.

For now we just have four pole/pike armed figures that have separate heads and weapons, these will be closely followed by character figures and then some musket/jezzail armed troops. There are four different pikes in the same style as the top one shown below.

They are now off at the casters and we should have them for Salute on the OSHIRO modelterrain stand, TL20

We also have some artillery and beast of burden in the pipeline so watch this space :-)

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Assault on the AJCME AAR

The camp was set up and a section of the Anglo-Japanese Commission for Martian Expansion was exploring some newly discovered Martian ruins.

Quite literally out of nowhere, a Sky Martian clan burst from cover and charged the encampment. The loyal Aak Naks rushed to the defences but were soon beaten off. The Japanese units were pinned down behind their emplacements by unseen foes.

The small Japanese force, having seemed to have defeated the unseen forces turned to face the Sky Martians and gave them withering fire. The steam walker also joined in the fire after having a shakey start up.

Another force of Aak Naks come to join the frey; the most disturbing thing was not knowing where they came from or who they were fighting for.

The enemy Aak Naks take the fight to the Japanese and resoundingly beat them.

Meanwhile, the Sky Martians rally after taking a beating from the Japanese and charge back over the sandbags to assault the walker and subsequently defeat it and the pilot.

With assistance from an unknown quarter the small expedition is beaten but the attackers flee before reinforcements can arrive and surprisingly steam tech and supplies were left behind...

Strange events indeed. Who is this new foe and why did they leave when they did?

Diary of Archibald Harris-Hampton...

These are worrying times for the British and their Japanese allies when the vast majority of expeditions seemingly to have been targeted in the past few months with no apparent reason. Is there something going on behind the scenes?

Game was played using the Rifles and Spears variant of M+T with suitable VSF alterations by us. Thanks again to Happy Wanderer!

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Assault on the AJCME - A Red Planet Adventure

North West Frontier, Mars 4th August 1891.The Offices of the London Illustrated News Overseas Reporting Team.

Once again, your special Aether Correspondent, Archibald Harris-Hampton has witnessed yet more exciting occurrences on the Red Planet when the Anglo-Japanese Commission for Martian Expansion was attacked by an, as yet unidentified, commercial force...

What could this possibly mean for events on Mars now!

Saturday, 6 August 2016

8:30 to New Victoria AAR:

The 8:30 en route to New Victoria after dropping some supplies off at the British outpost at Kingston Plains has been stopped by a landfall at the entrance to the Albert Cutting.

The coolies on board were sent out to try and remove the debris before carrying on with the journey and the camel corp (sans camels) used the remaining baggage on the train to erect some hasty defences in case of Sky Martian attack.

And of course, true to form, the Sky Martians make an appearance around the cutting and rapidly dispatch the coolies clearing the debris.

A small unit of the camel corp line the front barricade while others went to the telegraph station to alert all outposts of the Sky Martian attack. Sky Martians swarm down the cutting towards the barricades but under heavy fire from the revolving cannon at the telegraph station.

The Sky Martians take heavy casualties but manage to kill the defenders at the barricade.

Meanwhile, another clan of Martians eventually break their way into the lower portion of the telegraph station and burst upon the camel corp at the top but not before a British column arrive; led by no-other than Captain Softlove and his companion in danger, Sergeant Ruffbrute, and start to inflict a heavy toll on the Martians.

The mounted camel corp on the desert floor charge some Martians who, in their previously unknown fear of camels, retreat but then through either a prompting by the gods or some other means they turn and return the charge and create havoc.

But the stalwart thin red line behind give fire and manage to see them off.

The Martians, seeing defeat close at hand retreat but not before destroying the train engine and leaving the column in disarray.

A close call indeed for the British and without the quick arrival of Softlove, who knows what might have happened. Fortuitous to say the least...

Diary of Archibald Harris-Hampton...

Sky Martian attacks in recent months are becoming ever more frequent. There even seems to be an element of luck in the way the Sky Martians are able to find, and descend on targets so quickly. Maybe there is more going on here than meets the eye...

Game was played using the Rifles and Spears variant of M+T, thanks again to Happy Wanderer!

Saturday, 30 July 2016

08:30 to New Victoria - A Red Planet Adventure

North West Frontier, Mars 30th July 1891. The Offices of the London Illustrated News Overseas Reporting Team.

Once again, your special Aether Correspondent, Archibald Harris-Hampton has been in the thick of things when a routine supply run to an outlying British encampment nearly ended in Disaster.

The eight thirty to New Victoria was on it's way back from the British outpost of Kingston Plains when Sky Martians erupted from the Albert Cutting, blocking the rails with a landfall and preceded to advance on the train...

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Martian Burial Sites and Rituals. Part One

City Martians take great reverence to their dead, an offshoot from the original Martians from before the storm. Ceremonies and burial rites are important to them but they also help to celebrate the lives that are still with them.

When a Martian dies, their body is burned along with their most prized possessions, personal effects that are chosen but aren't part of the family heirloom hoard. If no possessions have been chosen, such as through a sudden death, then close family members will choose items they deem suitable.

A small funeral pyre is built on the roof of the family house and the body is paced on top with the possessions and a small fire is lit underneath. The pyre is doused in special oils that allow the flames to burn low and slow consuming the body over several days. The closest relatives of the deceased stay with the pyre until it grow cold, feeding the pyre if it grows low, murmuring prayers and incantations to the gods. At this time, many visitors whom knew the deceased will visit for a few hours to talk about their City Martian brethren, sing songs and praise all the good deeds that occurred.

Once the pyre has been wholly consumed, the ashes are collected and placed into several small pots (one for each of the gods) and left on the roof of the house for a week whilst the family mourn, this also gives a chance for distant relatives to make the journey and pay their respects. Once the mourning period is over the family will invite other close families to join them in the procession to the Vale of the Deceased. Many Vales surround the older Martian settlements with the more important Martians being interred in the older parts of the Vales. For the new Martian communities, families either have to travel long distances or make do with what they have. The area around New Victoria, for example, is a vast expanse of level ground with the occasional mesa protruding up from the desert. In these cases an entrance way is created in the side of a mesa and the vault is dug into it as described below.

The family would have an area in the Vale solely for their use and it would be expanded as and when necessary. The main structure of the burial site would consist of an entrance mound generally built in front a rock outcrop with a short, open topped processional passage from that leading into a vault carved from the rock. Many floors would be carved into the rock outcrop going further down with each new generation buried. The walls of the vaults are generally left plain with only the family name and most recent ancestors carved above the interment area.

The grander the family, the more impressive the entrance mound and tunnel. Each one would have carvings of major family events (the skill of mural painting was lost in the Great Storm along with many others). The ruling family of course would have the grandest burial site and it would cover a large area and have many generations interred within with a suitably impressive entrance to the mound. If a family dies out (which by all reports seems to be happening more often) then the close friends of that family will block up the main tomb entrance and seal it forever

There have been reports of human explorers trying to gain access to the vaults, very likely with the simple intention of studying them, but the City Martians can take great affront to any unwarranted intrusion to their vales. Some have even placing temporary guards at the vale entrances to prevent any unwelcome visitors...

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

The Trade Delegation AAR:

The Japanese encampment about 150km from New Victoria. Aak Naks out on patrol in the distance and the Sky Martian leader Raa Maa Lam being presented to the Princess Imperial.

Seemingly from out of nowhere, Martians from the Raas Ak Naa clan sneak upon the flank and try to charge the Aak Naks. The Aak Naks take up defensive positions in an abandoned corral and give the Sky Martians some withering fire.

Closer to the camp, more Raas Ak Nar manage to get close to the proceedings and a few get past the Aak Naks in the corral and charge into the Japanese troops.

Seeing off this initial attack the Japanese turn to find another attack from both the Daas Ak Nar and the Kaas Ak Thaal.

Feirce fighting ensues and the Japanese hold their own but it is close and the Princesses own Hatamoto charge in to save their ward.

On the other flank, the Aak Naks beat off the Rass Ak Naa and turn to face remnants of the Daas Ak Nar, seeing them off in short time.

With the majority of the Sky Martians either defeated or fleeing the leader of the Kaas Ak Thaal (Takers of Heads) taunts the remaining Japanese. Or was it a warning...

A very close run victory for the Japanese. It is unknown at this point whether negotiations will continue with Prince Raa Maa Lam...

Diary of Archibald Harris-Hampton...

The Sky Martian Prince seems to be taking more risks to ingratiate himself with the Japanese/Anglo alliance and one can only assume that he hasn't spoken to the other powers yet. I wonder if they know the full extent of what is occurring here on the Red Planet...

Game was played using the Rifles and Spears variant of M+T, thanks to Happy Wanderer!