Terror of the Lichemaster, Part 3
The Lichemaster has raised an army of undead. His opening move is to deploy Ranlac the Black and a phalanx of skeleton warriors to ambush a handful of prospectors working a nearby mine. This is the necromancer's first step towards seizing the Frugelhorn Valley and raising its slaughtered inhabitants as zombies. But what Kemler hasn't reckoned upon is that this isn't any mine. This is the mine of Gimbrin Finehelm and his warband of beautifully helmeted dwarves.
In this first battle in the Terror of the Lichemaster scenario pack, Gimbrin Finehelm and his 5 followers face off against 21 skeletons. The dwarves are cornered in a steep ravine, and have limited options. It's the classic underdog scenario. They could try scattering in hopes that a couple dwarves can escape the cordon and warn the villagers at Frugelhofen. Or should they stick together and try to break out as a team? Or can they defeat the undead wholesale by exploiting defensible terrain? Or will they simply grit their teeth and sell their lives as dearly as possible?
Terror of the Lichemaster doesn't give us very much information about the character of Gimbrin - just that he is an adventurer trying to resuscitate an old mine without much success. But he reappears in Return of the Lichemaster (1989), where we are told that he is a "thoughtful" and "powerful" leader", and "is thought handsome by Dwarven standards, having a beard of exceptional sleekness" (p. 83).
What I can tell you about Gimbrin is that he was the 2nd most expensive miniature I've ever bought.* It seems that he is the rarest of all the miniatures in this scenario pack, and never saw any release outside special mail orders during the 1980's. When he surfaced on eBay in late 2012, he represented the last Lichemaster miniature for my collection. And so I entered into one of those crippling bidding wars where, at the last second, you swoop in and bang a nauseating sum into eBay, assuring yourself that your stratospheric buffer is completely unnecessary. And then you wait the 2 or 3 remaining seconds of the auction to discover that some jackass has done exactly the same thing.
And when eBay tells you "You've Won", you feel poor, proud and stupid all at the same time.**
When all is said and done, Gimbrin is a beautiful miniature. His helmet is unique in the Citadel range of dwarves, what with its long rectangular visor and the short aventail (the curtain of chainmail hanging from the helm). I really wanted Gimbrin to stand out in the crowd -- I hadn't paid all that money for a wall-flower! -- so I gave his armour a bright blue accent. And doesn't his beard look sleek?
Well, thanks for looking, and in the next installment, we'll take a closer look at Gimbrin Finehelm's five well-helmeted warriors...
|Gimbrin Finehelm sketched by Tony Ackland|
* The most expensive was Osrim Chardz from the Citadel scenario pack Blood Bath at Orcs Drift. But that's another story...
** You also congratulate yourself for finding a phlegmatic girlfriend.