Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Behold! Disney's FrostLanders: A Disney vs. Skylanders Game Inspired by Frostgrave

On July 20th of this year, Osprey Publishing released Frostgrave their most recent set of miniature wargame rules. Starting with Field of Glory in 2008, and continuing with the excellent Bolt Action in 2012 Osprey has published a number of high quality rules for use with miniatures. In 2012, they started a series of paperback digest books that explore a number of interesting wargaming options. This series started with Dux Bellorum and has included a number of excellent games like In Her Majesty's Name and A Fistful of Kung Fu

Like many of Osprey's offerings, Frostgrave has an easy to learn system that is highly flexible and moves quickly. The focus of the rules are on casual fun and not on tournament play. In some ways, this is a similar approach to the one that Games Workshop claims is the basis of their recent decision to abandon Warhammer Fantasy. There is one major difference though. Unlike the new Warhammer: Age of Sigmar game, Frostgrave is firmly entrenched in traditional fantasy tropes. Frostgrave shares some thematic elements with Games Workshop's classic Mordheim game, but is much easier to learn is more focused on story than Mordheim was when it was first released. Frostgrave is so easy to learn that it inspired me to begin creating a derivative game that I can use to play with my 7 year old twin daughters History and Mystery. Inspired by +James August Walls, my game is a mashup of Disney Infinity and Skylanders.

As easy as the rules for Frostgrave are to learn, they do have a couple of "fiddley-bits" that might make things a little complex for playing with my daughters. For example, in the Frostgrave rules as written it is possible to hit an opponent and not injure them and most rolls are contested rolls. I want to move away from having contested rules as much as possible and use a Monte Cook and Numenera inspired mechanic where the players to all the rolling. Additionally, Osprey has not published a fan license that states what we as fans are and are not allowed to do with their rules, so I've decided to use a rules set inspired by the actual Frostgrave rules.

So here are my simple rules.
1) All die rolls are made with a d12.
2) Turns follow the following pattern.
            a) Roll for Initiative.
            b) Hero Phase
            c) Ally Phase
            d) Villain Phase
3) Player Characters are rated in the following areas:
MOVEMENT -- Min (4)/Max(10)
MELEE -- Min(-2)/Max(+4)
RANGED -- Min(-2)/Max(+4)
RESISTANCE -- Min(0)/Max(5)

HEALTH -- Min(8)/Max(20)
4) Villains are rated in the same statistics, but their numbers are 5 higher for all values 
     other than Health and serve as difficulty numbers the players must roll better than.
5) On a player's turn, the player may move and take 1 action. That action may be an
    attack, a power activation, or another movement action.
6) When a player attacks a Villain, the player rolls 1d12 and adds their relevant statistic
    (melee in hand to hand and ranged for ranged attacks). They then add their statistic to
    that value. If that value is greater than the Villain's equivalent statistic, the Villain has
    been hit.
7) On a successful hit, subtract a Villain's Resistance from the total and what remains is
    the amount of Health lost.
8) If a character is "prone" then it takes half of their movement to get up.
9) To activate a power, the player rolls 1d12 and compares it to the activation score of
     the power. If it is higher than the score, the power is activated.
10) When a Villain attacks a Hero or Ally, the Player rolls a Melee or Ranged test. If the
       roll is higher than the Villain's value in that area the attack misses.
11) Villain powers activate in the same manner as Player powers. This is one of the few
      rolls the Game Master will make.
I've only done stats for a couple of characters, but I have a feeling that this will be fun.

All icons used in this post were made by Lorc. Available on

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