Monday 10 August 2015

The 2nd Cú Chulainn Cup - Ireland's Own SBH Competition

This weekend the 2nd annual Irish Song of Blades and Heroes competition day - The Cú Chulainn Cup - was held in Whitehead, Co. Antrim. Like last year, the host venue was Wee Gamers, a great bunch of guys and girls who meet regularly (several times a week) to play a huge array of tabletop war games, board games and RPGs.

This year we had 10 competitors with a really interesting mix of warbands. There were a few limitations placed on warband creation but, as you'll see yourself, that didn't stop our lads from having all manner of models on the table. I'm also really proud to say that no-one went for a real power-gaming, min-max approach to the warbands. They all had a theme and stuck to them.
  • Players must use the same painted 25-28mm scale warbands in each round.
  • Warbands may be no larger than 300 points and must be legal – i.e. no more than 33.3% of the points value of the warband may be spent on models with special rules which define them as ‘personalities’. 
  • Profiles for warband members may be taken the rosters within the Song of Blades and Heroes core rule book or any or its official supplements, or may be customised using the online warband builder software found on the Ganesha Games website.
  • Special rules from any of the following Ganesha Games rules are permitted: Song of Blades and Heroes, Song of Wind and Water, Song of Gold and Darkness, Song of Deeds and Glory, Song of Arthur and Merlin, Song of Splintered Lands
  • Note that only the following forms of the Lethal special rule will be permitted: Lethal against Animals, Lethal against Artificial, Lethal against Magic Users (all varieties), Lethal against Undead or Lethal against a specified race (other than humans). Characters with the Assassin special rule may only be used if their combat factor is 3 or less.


War Leader (78 pts) Q3 C4
Berserk, Tough

4x Berserkers (48 pts) Q4 C5
Berserk Fearless

Scout (30 pts) Q3 C2
Forester, Shooter: Short


Sir Hugh Grippipe Finn, Lord High Captain General of His Most Imperial Majesty’s Grand Army of Lillyput (78 pts) Q3 C1
Heavy Armor, Leader, Long Move, Mounted

2x Lillyputian Mounted Knights (41pts) Q4 C1
Heavy Armor, Long Move, Mounted, Swarm

3x Lillyputian Foot Knights (17pts) Q4 C1
Heavy Armor, Swarm

5x Lillyputian Long Bowmen (11 pts) Q4 C1 
Rabble, Shooter: Medium, Swarm 

6x Lillyputian Billmen (5 pts) Q4 C1 
Rabble, Swarm 


Yephima, Cloud Giant (70 pts) Q3 C3
Huge, Leader

Snow White (34 pts) Q3 C1

Isabeau Laroche, Paladin (34 pts) Q3 C3

Trista, the White Wolf (30 pts) Q3 C3

Freja Fangbreaker (46 pts) Q3 C4
Fearless, Short Move, Steadfast

Hellakin Goregutter, Halfling Rogue (26 pts) Q3 C2
Free Disengage, Short Move, Stealth

Eliza, Succubus (56 pts) Q3 C3
Flying, Savage



Hradi Solmundrson (95 pts) Q2 C4
Heavy Armour, Leader

3x Viking Huscarls (27pts) Q4 C3

Heavy Armour

7x Viking Warriors (15 pts) Q5 C3

Wolf (17 pts) Q5 C4


Cu Chullain (64 pts) Q3 C3
Combat Master, Dashing, Shooter: Medium

Laeg (32 pts) Q4 C4
Shooter: Medium, Short Move

Ferdiad, Battle Brother (38 pts) Q3 C3

Fergal (33 pts) Q2 C1

3x Wolf Hound (23 pts) Q4 C3
Animal, Forester

Faoladh, Werewolf (62 pts) Q3 C3
Big, Forester, Long Move


Dracona Spire, Wizard (84 pts) Q3 C2
Entangle, Magic-User, Shooter: Short

Sir Fantor Black, the Black Sheep (50 pts) Q3 C3
Heavy Armor, Lethal vs Magic Users, Shooter: Medium

Johan Oxstead, Barbarian (40 pts) Q3 C3
Berserk, Fearless, Greedy

Aneo Satin Didiss Ramerez, Squire (34 pts) Q3 C2
Good Shot, Shooter: Medium

Leonis, Catman Archer (52 pts) Q3 C2
Dashing, Good Shot, Poison, Shooter: Long

Bageress, Catman Scout (38 pts) Q3 C2
Dashing, Forester, Poison


Centurion (72 pts) Q3 C3
Group Fighter, Fearless, Leader

6x Legionaries (38 pts) Q4 C4
Heavy Armour, Shooter: Short


RAT PACK – Chris
Assassin (96 pts) Q3 C2
Assassin, Free Disengage, Leader, Shooter: Short, Stealth

4x Warriors (32 pts) Q4 C3

4x Scouts (24 pts) Q4 C2
Gregarious, Stealth


La Morty Fille (60 pts) Q4 C2
Leader, Necromancer

Dead Guy Claude (13 pts) Q5 C2

Dead Guy Clete (13 pts) Q5 C2

Dead Guy Vic (13 pts) Q5 C2

Dead Guy Jones (13 pts) Q5 C2

Ex Baron Silverfish (33 pts) Q4 C3
Good Shot, Shooter: Medium

Slippery Derk (38 pts) Q4 C3
Free Disengage, Good Shot, Shooter: Medium

Old Man Long Barrel (42 pts) Q4 C3
Good Shot, Shooter: Long, Unerring Aim

Annoying Monkey (15 pts) Q5 C1
Acrobat, Animal, Long Move

Scary Norman (45 pts) Q4 C4
Free Disengage, Opportunistic, Savage

Big Alfonse (13 pts) Q5 C3


Mystico the Mouse, Sage of Wyldewood (95 pts) Q2 C2
Abbot, Magic-user, Slow

Håkon the Hedgehog (60 pts) Q4 C3
Heavy Armour
Pyrrho to Polecat (38 pts) Q3 C2
Acrobat, Dashing, Free Disengage

Jack Rarebit (40 pts) Q3 C2
Long Move

Bors the Beaver (32 Pts) Q4 C3
Amphibious, Tailslap

Mortimer Mole (22 pts) Q3 C2
Burrowing, Short Move

Knut the Squirrel (46 pts) Q3 C2
Clinging, Good Shot, Shooter: Long


The day consisted of five rounds against randomly* generated opponents, fought on a randomly* selected table (out of seven in total) with pre-set terrain and scenario. When I say 'random', I actually mean that I carefully created a table to ensure that no two players met twice, and no player fought a second game on the same table. The randomness came in that the slots in the table were ascribed to a player based on the order in which they turned up to the hall.

The first round went for one hour plus the rest of the current turn, while the other rounds were limited to 45 minutes (plus the current turn). We had a longer first round to facilitate the 'settling  in' period as most of the group only play SBH sporadically, and a couple were first timers.

TABLE 1 The Titanbane Quest 

Three counters are placed on the table marking possible locations of a magical weapon known as Titanbane. When a model comes into contact with a counter they may spend 1 action to search the area. Flip the counter over and compare the number with the possible ‘finds’ below.

I. The model has found Titanbane, a magical weapon of great craftsmanship. A model must spend 2 actions to pick up Titanbane. Any model holding Titanbane may give it to an adjacent model by spending 1 action. If a model carrying Titanbane is killed, another figure may pick it up from the dead model’s body by spending 2 actions.

The wielder of Titanbane is granted the Combat Master, Giant Slayer, Group Fighter and Fearless special rules.

II. Face your Fear! A manifestation of Fear (Q3, C3, Artificial, Frain, Dogged) appears in the location of the marker, i.e. engaged in combat with the model. It will be activated by the opposing player at the start of their next and subsequent turns – always roll three activation dice; it won’t cause a turnover even if you fail them all. Fear may only attack or be attacked by the model who discovered it. If the model who discovered Fear is killed, Fear will disappear. Fear and any death it causes are ignored for the purposes of calculating victory points.

III. Nothing but footprints in the dust, fingerprints in time… Lost in thought, the model may make no further actions this turn.

Victory conditions: 1 victory point per 25 points of defeated opponents (killed or routed off the table), plus 5 victory points for holding Titanbane at the end of the game.

TABLE 2 A Place of Power

The rival warbands have found a stone circle ripe with mystical energies and will now fight to possess it.

Magic-using models (including all magic users, magic using subtypes and clerics) standing within the perimeter of stones gain +1 on all their Quality rolls, including Morale rolls, and cannot run out of magic power until the end of the game so long as they continue to stand within the stone circle.

Victory conditions: 1 victory point per 25 points of defeated opponents, plus 3 victory points for every magic-using model standing on the Place of Power terrain at the end of the game.

TABLE 3 Beeranburger Brawlers 

The rival warbands engage in an all-out battle for control of the backstreets of suburban Beeranburger. Here they will each attempt to eliminate their rival’s leader in their quest for ascendancy.

Victory conditions: 1 victory point per 25 points of defeated opponents, plus 5 victory points for killing (or routing) the personality in the opposing warband with the highest points value.

TABLE 4 Darkaznite Caverns

Searching for lost treasure, the rival warbands have stumbled into each other in the Darkaznite Caverns. Here they engage in an all-out battle to the death (or for 45 minutes, whichever happens first). 

The Darkaznite Caverns are really rather poorly lit. All personality models will start the game carrying torches. While they carry a torch they may act and move normally. However, all enemy shooting that targets a model holding a torch receives a +1C modifier. A character may not pass their torch to another model, but they may drop a torch at the start of any turn for free – it then splutters out.

Leader personalities who drop their torch have the range of their Leadership Q bonus reduced to 1x Medium distance.

Any model that is not carrying a torch receives the Slow special rule as they move cautiously, trying to find their feet in the dark.

All shooting – except at a model carrying a torch, is limited to 1x Medium range. 

We allowed the players to choose between a cavern table or a dungeon table.

Victory conditions: 1 victory point per 20 points of defeated opponents.

TABLE 5 Ballybogside

The rival warbands encounter each other in the ‘lakeside holiday retreat’ of Ballybogside. Here they engage in an all-out battle to the death (or for 45 minutes, whichever happens first).

Any model who falls while adjacent to the edge of a walkway or platform will fall into the swamp, as will any model forced to recoil off a walkway or platform.

While in the swamp, models become Slow and have a Short Move unless they are amphibious or swamp walkers, in which case they may move normally.

It costs two actions to climb out of the swamp back onto a walkway/platform except where there is a ramp.

Victory conditions: 1 victory point per 20 points of defeated opponents.

TABLE 6 Watcher in the Woods

While out hunting for truffles, the rival warbands have stumbles upon a clearing in the woods with a nice wee pond.

The first time any model falls (not a kill), whether in melee or because of shooting, both warbands watch in horror as the Watcher launches itself from the water, grabs the fallen model and drags it back helpless to its murky lair.

The model is lost (the opposing player will get no victory points for its demise kill) and all remaining characters must take an immediate morale test.

Victory conditions: 1 victory point per 20 points of defeated opponents.

TABLE 7 Looting the Ruins

Hoping to find something worth lifting, the warbands have stumbled upon the ruins of an old mining village. Have a look around and see what you can find.

Three markers, worth 1, 2 and 3 victory points each are located on the table. The problem is, the warbands don’t know which is worth what.

Any model may pick up a piece of loot by standing next to it and spending an action. Take the loot marker off the table but do not turn it over. Any model who picks up a piece of loot and then flips the marker over to reveal its value will lose the marker and see their model suffer a gruesome death.

The model may then remain on the table to carry on fighting, or leave the table via their own table edge.

Victory conditions: 1 victory point per 25 points of defeated opponents, plus the marked value (1, 2 or 3) for each piece of loot held by a member of the warband or carried off the table. -1 victory point for each member of the warband who voluntarily left the table.


We had three prize winners - each got credit with Ganesha Games. Gary, one of the day's rookies, was the day's grand champion having won every game he played. Andy C was awarded, by popular acclaim, the "most enjoyable opponent" award, while Andy T won the peoples' choice award for "best themed warband".


  1. Thank you for putting this up, it was a great read! Looks everyone had a terrific time, I hope I can get the game to such a level of popularity in my area that I could attempt something similar in the future. Great job on the write up!

  2. Thank you for putting this up, it was a great read! Looks everyone had a terrific time, I hope I can get the game to such a level of popularity in my area that I could attempt something similar in the future. Great job on the write up!