Salute 2018 – our stand location

This year we are right at the back opposite Britannia Miniatures, and not far from the seating area.

Salute 2018 Stand Location

We shall be running at least two Thud & Blunder participation games as well as displaying the rest of our games and welcoming back Mark Byng with his updated IHMN Boardgame.

Please drop by to say hello, have a chat or a game and, if you should feel so inclined, drop off some cake 🙂

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The Ministry’s show schedule 2018

Anyone bringing Craig cake will be made a member of the ministry’s Legion d’Honneur.

The show season is about to really kick-off, so we thought that we would share our current schedule with you;

* Fiasco is still to confirm, but the rest are on.

This year we shall be touring with between one and three different Thud & Blunder tables for your delight and delectation. Most games take 30-40 minutes, which includes teaching you all the rules you need to know, and are for two players. We regularly have players as young as eight beating their parental units into the dust.

IHMN Gothic at Barrage 2017

We are always happy to take time and chat with you players, tell you about upcoming publications, and even settle rules queries (though all statements by me have to be ratified by my Principle Private Secretary – i.e. Charles).

If there is an important show that we are missing please let us know. It may not be too late to fit it in.

We hope to see you, and our band of regulars, at one of these shows this year.

Note that Dave and his stalwart Coggers shall also be at a lot of shows running IHMN and other splendid games. His stripped down IHMN games are a joy to behold, so keep an eye out for him under the COGS banner :D.

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A Blood Eagle AAR from Anatoli’s Games Room

One of our many players, Alexander, has blogged a splendid battle report, which we would like to share with you. You can find it here:

Here is a little taste of it:

anatoli 1

Now that folks, is a Troll!

“Caroline and I played two games of Blood Eagle yesterday, it was the first time I’ve properly played the rules. Blood Eagle is a skirmish game that lends itself well for campaign gaming, and it features a bunch of folklore/fantasy elements as well.

“It did however not feature the exact type of profiles that I needed for trolls and goblins so I had to make my own unit profiles using the excellent unit and item creator within the game. I think I nailed the stats for the forest dwelling creatures quite well, and they were pretty balanced with the tweaked Viking villagers and champion we used for our 250pts game.”

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Zombini is coming!!

Being the report of a battle between and betwixt Charles and my good self.


  1. The Setting

The pleasant little town of Bramlinghame.

  1. The time

About eleven of the clock on a Wednesday, market day.

  1. The Scenario

A simple seize the objectives game. Five counters each marked on the bottom with a loot value: 0, 0, 5, 10 & 15 points.

These were mixed up and placed across the middle of the town, equidistant from the two warbands

  1. The Purpose

The purpose of the game was to playtest an encounter between a magic-heavy warband and one with very little magic.

To this end, Charles brought out his Necromancer, the Great Zombini and I deployed my brave City Watch.


The picturesque little town of Bramlinghame

“Zombini is coming!”

For a moment, everything stopped in the marketplace as the news sank in. Zombini the mad! Zombini the necromancer! Then chaos, as every living soul deserted the streets and barricaded themselves into the houses, shops and inns.

Well, not every living soul. Gertcha, the witch’s cat, was unperturbed and remained to complete his morning ablutions.


The Market Square is deserted, all but for Gertcha, the Witches’ cat

Down at the Watchhouse, a breathless urchin relayed the news and Captain Quentin Querolous assembled his men. Pugh snr, Pugh jnr, Sgt McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble, and Grubb all stood in a neat line across the yard.

Dibble and Grubb had brought Gnipper and Gnasher, their mastiffs, from the Watch Kennels.

The venerable Father Ted soon joined them, shaking not from fear, but delirium tremens. The Watch had a limited budget and often had to take what they could get in terms of magical support.

Despite his condition, Father Ted had divined that the wicked Zombini was after three small chests of magical powders. Three small chests in a market full of such merchandise. Perhaps the noble Watch would have time to deny Zombini his prize.

On the edge of town Zombini stood waiting for the streets to clear. Beside him were his adept Kid Davver and novice Cemetery Sid. He threw a hand full of small bones onto the ground and a few moments later three loyal skeletons clawed their way up through the earth. Abel and Bravo were armed with swords and boards, but Chopper had a fearsome, if rusty, great axe.


The Great Zombini and his minions!

The game began with Zombini and his cadaverous company approaching from the north-west, down Back Lane, avoiding the High Street and market square.

Capt. Querolous split his men into three groups and approached from the south with all due speed. Dibble and Grubb, with Gnipper and Gnasher, came up Back Lane on the left. Sgt McGrew took the Pughs up the right along Penny Lane, and the Captain, accompanied by Father Ted and Cuthbert, marched brazenly along the High Street to reassure the populace.

It became apparent that Zombini was playing a cautious game, so Dibble and Grubb unleashed the hounds, who dashed forwards to discomfort Zombini and Kid Davver. Charles did seem a little surprised at the incredible speed of the Mastiffs who, at a full run, can cover 18″.


Unleash the Hounds!!


Zombini sent Abel, Bravo and Chopper forwards to engage Dibble and Grubb, while peppering them with fire bolts, spectral darts and fireballs. It must be said that Charles die-rolling during this period was abysmal and required several dice to be expelled from his service (and across the kitchen). The last die he chose, wisely decided to play ball.


Dem bones, dem bones, dem dry bones!

On the High Street, all was quiet, and Querolous lumbered forwards at his full speed of 6″, his men easily keeping pace with him. While in Penny Lane the Pughs sprinted forwards and seized a small chest, only to find that it only contained fine pipeweed, not magical powders. Sergeant McGrew was summoned to join his Captain on the High Street leaving the Pughs to their own devices…


Over the next few turns Dibble and Grubb managed to find two chests (only one with magical powders in) but then succumbed to magical and skeletal attacks, Grubb having spent at least two turns on fire. Gnipper and Gnasher kept the Necromancers back, but failed to drag them down as ordered.

By the time The Captain and his trusty sergeant reached the scene, having plodded through the marketplace, all that was left to greet them were Abel, Bravo and Chopper. By this time, Dibble had been turned into ‘ZomDibble’ by Zombini and was heading north carrying a chest, which Zombini had acquired by using Teleport to snatch it from my fallen guardsmen.  Zombini had also successfully cast Beastmaster and turned Gnasher into his own loyal doggo. The Captain had sent the much quicker Cuthbert up the High Street to outflank the necromancers.


Charles targeting yet another fireball! You will note from the counter that Grubb was already aflame at this point. The poker counter is a chest (the contents of which is marked upon the bottom in pencil).

While this was all going on I had completely forgotten about the Pughs. A tall building actually shielded them from my view and all the events on my left flank had distracted me. I can only assume that they had been sampling the pipeweed in the chest they had found (and ignored the second chest only yards from their position).


“Have you got your pipe Dad?”

In the next couple of turns the Captain showed his mettle, despatched the remaining skeletons and weathered a veritable storm of magical firepower. Father Ted was felled by a magically-targeted fireball from Kid Davver, without ever really using any of his own powers in anger. The Pughs got their act together and seized the third chest, but then got caught by Zombini who teleported in to relieve them of their loot. Pugh Jr was felled, and only the intervention of the noble Captain, kept Pugh Sr heading for the Watchhouse. ZomDibble managed to get a chest off the northern edge of the board and back to Zombini’s secret lair.


The Battel of Fishmonger’s Alley. Note Father Ted, lying down on the job. To the rear ZomDibble, chest in tow, was beginning his eternal service to he new lord – Zombini.

The Sergeant and Gnipper made a nuisance of themselves, and kept Kid Davver and Cemetery Sid busy on Back Lane. The Sergeant did make a last minute attempt to get back to support his Captain, but to no avail.


“Listen up son, are you going to come quietly, or sliced up like salami?”

The game ended with me winning the initiative and running Pugh Sr off the table carrying two small chests. This was due, in no small part, to Querolous and Zombini fighting each other to the death. Successful post-game survival checks ensured that both of them will live to fight again.


Fighting to the last! Songs will be sung to Pugh Sr’s courage (and loot transporting ability).


Despite Charles’ warband having total magic superiority, and casting more spells than a witches’ convention, the game was still fairly well balanced.

Charles lost none of his junior spell-casters during the game and did send one of my watchmen off the board, as a zombie, carrying his loot, but I managed to pin him down enough to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat on the very last turn.

The mastiffs, in particular, proved their worth. Their speed and tenacity allowed my men to close on the objectives and keep the spell-casters at longer ranges. You will be seeing them again (I have three of them).

At one point I had two men knocked down, two others on fire, and it looked like Charles was going to romp home. But courage (i.e. great pluck rolls), and perseverance won out in the end.

Teleport is a very nasty spell…


All the buildings were Dave Graffam paper ones. I just love the textures and details he puts into them.

The board was the one you would have seen at shows being used for the IHMN Gothic participation game.

My City Watch was recruited from the Reaper Bones collection, and yes, I am going to replace the bendy plastic spears with metal ones. Captain Querolous is an Essex miniatures Knight from the 1980s. I painted them all myself, I shall blame no other.

Charles figures are all certified antiques from his vast collection. Kudos to anyone who can name them and their manufacturer’s.

More play test reports will be featured here in the coming weeks, as we smooth out the wrinkles, and weed out the game breakers. Please feel free to ask questions about the game.


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I hear the sound… of distant drums!

We began play-testing Thud & Blunder last autumn, when Charles invited Duncan, Billy and myself to Castle Murton.
As you can see from the photos that accompany this piece, we set up a small walled town in the Castle’s Orangery.

The Town Gate
Most of the buildings are Dave Graffan’s splendid print and build card ones, and the scatter terrain is a merry mix of commercial and scratchbuilt stuff from my collection.
At the core of Thud & Blunder you will find the rules we developed for Blood Eagle. Quite a few changes have been made to allow us to use the full panoply of High Medieval warfare, and include all the fantasy people want.

A secret meeting
When the game is complete, which we estimate to be in the Autumn(-ish), you will be presented with a toolkit that will allow you to deploy your warbands/retinues in the streets of packed towns and cities, the ruins of ancient empires, in taverns and alleyways, underground in crypts, catacombs and magnificent dungeons, at sea, in the air and across the high wilderlands.

The Market from above
We will be including the widest range of warbands/retinues of any book we have so far published. In addition will be a an incredible toolkit that will allow you to create your own unique forces, and develop them and their characters to become legends.

Market day 3
The advantages of this approach mean that you can either play it straight out of the book, or try your luck in Llankhmar, Waterdeep, Kings Landing, Zamora and Minas Tirith.
So, until it is complete we shall be sharing design notes, warbands and battle reports here on the blog and announcing each on in our FB pages and other fora.
Feel free to comment and share your ideas. Tell us what just have to include, and we shall respond with what we can 🙂

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North Star to take over Lead Adventure Fora!

For some years now In Her Majesty’s Name has been fortunate enough to have a dedicated sub-board on the magnificent Lead Adventure Fora. It seems that our good friend and distributor of Ministry products – Nick Eyre – is stepping up to ensure these excellent fora remain operational.

We could not be happier with this turn of events and wish Nick and the LAF Moderators the very best for the future.

Alex – owner and founder of Lead Adventure Forum:

“Dear LAF members: I have an important announcement for you today. As you’ve probably noticed, I haven’t been very active on the forum in the last months (and even before that), which was for many reasons, none of them bad, just the usual RL stuff, family, work, other things/interests. I won’t be going any deeper into this, but really don’t need to worry – I’m fine, it’s just some personal stuff.

Nonetheless, due to all those things I had to limit the time I spend on the hobby, and above all I had to find a solution for running of LAF as I am not able any more to take care of this community as much as it deserves. For that reason, I really want to say “thank you” to our moderator team, to every one of them, for being around all the time, every day, offering their time, reading posts, helping, inspiring. I really appreciate your efforts, guys, thanks again!

Still, there are some other things which must be done, like forum software updates, hardware issues etc. Someone must take care of all these things, and frankly, it’s time to let some fresh air in. Thus, I started to look for someone who could replace me as legal owner and chief administrator of LAF. It wasn’t easy and I won’t be boring you with details but, among others, I approached Nick from North Star and asked him if he would be interested in taking care of LAF. Nick was surprised at first, but following some thinking, he said yes.

I understand that this news is probably as much a surprise for you as it was for Nick Smiley But yes, the decision had been made, I decided that I cannot run LAF any longer and I really would like to say another thank you, this time to Nick! Running this community isn’t that easy, after all. I hope all of you out there are aware of that. Just like work, it never stops. Therefore, I’m glad we could find someone willing to take this burden voluntarily Smiley And please don’t get it wrong, it’s not a commercial transaction. I didn’t sell LAF, I never would. I am giving it to Nick as this place is a labour of love. It has become too big for me to handle, but it’s still a lovely place to be.

I will let Nick to say some words on that too and to tell you what his plans are for the forum. We’re already working on the technical side of the things so please be prepared for some downtime on LAF in the coming days, maybe weeks. The server database needs to be migrated from my server to Nick’s. A thorough and major software update needs to be done, membership authorisations re-created etc. It’s a lot of work and it will take some time. But I will try to warn you in time. Now let me finish this announcement. And let me say thanks to all of you. For all the good times we had together, for all your input, creativity and inspiration. It’s been an honour.”

Nick Eyre from North Star Miniatures, new owner of Lead Adventure Forum:

“I’d like to thank Alex for passing the honour of running LAF to me. As he mentioned, it was unexpected and threw me off at first. But I decided I’d rather give it a go rather than not. In all honesty, my plans for LAF don’t go any further than ‘business as usual’ right now. I’ve been here myself since 2011, and I want to see it continue. I’ve got my friends at Wargames Illustrated looking at the technical side of the transfer, I don’t know anything about it and they do, so if you see their name in the background, that’s why.

It’s my hope that all the moderators will stay on, and run their boards like they always have. I’ve no intention of using each board for product placement or shutting down debate about our stuff. Commercially my only thought right now is to re-introduce the banner ads that used to appear, this time you’ll see mine as well as Miniaturicums/ Lead Adventure Miniatures. I may start a new board for North Star news, so you can participate or not in it, but that’s something I’ll do once we are up and running.

My biggest concern is the ‘up and running’ part. We don’t know what will happen when we move server, and we will have to update the software, so please bear with us if problems arise. A last note just to say Veteran member of LAF and BLAM Dewbacuk will also be joining me in running LAF. He’s staff at North Star, so we see each other each working day (and gaming time outside), and he knows you lot much better than I do, so it seems a good call.”

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Thud & Blunder Playtest 28th January

Between a member of the Southern playtesting team; Billy ‘Buttons’ Harrington, Sergeant-Major in the 42nd Foot and Mouth VC and Field Marshall Sir Charles Napier Murton (Permanent Private Secretary to the Minister, Lord Craig Arthur Wellesley Cartmell).

A playtest of the up and coming ‘Thud and Blunder’ fantasy skirmish game from the Ministry of Gentlemanly Warfare, Charles and Craig’s next project following IHMN, IHMN Gothic, Daishō, Blood Eagle and various supplements and expansions.

You can see where they’ve drawn their influences and experience into the game; for example, they’re both veteran Dungeons & Dragons players.

We played a classic cave encounter, a subterranean labyrinth strewn with debris, traps and treasure. The whole complex was unlit. Every figure in the orc warband could see in the dark but the knight and his human followers all needed light of some sort; most carried torches while the knight himself had a flaming sword.

Billy 16a

Please excuse the pictures and ‘terrain’; as a playtest the aim was to iron out details of various rules and we surprisingly don’t own a cave network (we need to address this).

The cave complex was roughly symmetrical with an entry/exit point on each side. Most of the “rooms” within contained treasure markers (we used Ministry tokens for these), each potentially protected by a trap (we rolled for this when the first figure reached the marker). Access to some areas was restricted by Dangerous Terrain, Difficult Terrain, traps and / or barriers. You can see parts of the cave layout in the pictures below but I forgot to take a picture of the overall layout!

One of the warbands consisted of a knight, his squire, two men at arms, a priest and a mercenary halfling burglar. The other consisted of orcs, worgs (dire wolves) and a gnoll shaman. More detailed warband rosters can be found here.

We played two games, each of us having a go at commanding each warband.

Game 1

Billy chose to start with the orcs, Charles the knight.

The first few turns were mostly movement with the riders on both sides racing ahead of their foot support.

The orcs were able to get a few shots off without response as they could see the humans but the humans couldn’t see them (only 6” light radius from a torch); none of these shots had any effect. The heavily armoured Priest finally managed to get into a position to cast Light into the room in an attempt to level the playing field but the gnoll shaman immediately countered it with Darkness.

Charles decided the burglar Bolgo would go straight for the treasures as he had the Trapsmith trait.

Each trap has a Danger Rating from 2 (least dangerous) to 9 (most dangerous); for these games we rolled randomly with results of 1 and 10 being taken to mean there was no trap. When a figure encounters a trap, it must roll the Danger Rating or more on a d10 to avoid the effects of the trap; any figure with the Trapsmith trait gets +2 on this roll. Failing the roll means the trap is triggered and the figure needs to make a Destiny check (at penalties for the more dangerous traps) to survive.

Charles opted to block the doorway with his heavily armoured and mounted adventurers but without the Light spell, and thus only 6” visibility, he still couldn’t see the orcs to shoot them.

Billy took advantage of this, keeping his orcs in the shadows and firing pot-shots hoping for a lucky hit. He managed to shoot the horse out from underneath the squire, Markus, who rolled a 10 on his Destiny to stay on his feet and moved back into the safety of some cover.

Billy used this as an opportunity dismount his leader Ghorsht as his worgs were intelligent creatures able to act autonomously. Charles’s warhorses would attack if they were threatened but otherwise would wait for someone to guide them around.

To counter the advantage Billy had with Nighteyes, Charles charged Sir Vyvar into combat with Ghorsht and his worg, hitting Ghorsht and setting him on fire with his flaming sword. This helped provide some useful light!

The gnoll shaman threw a Fireball which took out Horst (archer man-at-arms) and set Albus (priest) and Sven (polearm man-at-arms) on fire. Albus cast Extinguish several times to put the fires out and Markus finally put some shots into the orcs now illuminated by the knight’s flaming sword (and their burning leader), though to no great effect.

Billy had decided that the treasure wasn’t a justifiable reason to lose an orc, with their Destiny stats being lower than the knight’s burglar, so decided to change tactics and wait for the burglar, he just had to get through the knight and his followers first! This looked more difficult when Brother Albus took out the gnoll shaman with a well-aimed Bolt of Fire.

Billy piled into the combat with Jorrg and Oyya while Ghorsht withdrew to put out his flames. Sir Vyvar efficiently split his attacks, setting Ghorsht’s worg aflame and knocking Oyya down.

Jorrg with his 2 attacks and using the outnumbering rule finally made two successful attacks against the heavily armoured knight. Charles made a Destiny roll of 1 (automatic failure) and used one of Sir Vyvar’s Hero Points to reroll and survive. Sir Vyvar’s Destiny roll against the second hit was a 2, another fail … and only one Hero point can be spent in any phase so he was out.

Billy quickly finished the knight’s mount but the burning worg also died.

Billy surrounded Brother Albus and closed on Sven, taking shots at range before closing in and finally finishing the priest off with the outnumbering rule again, funnily enough the priest had more kills then anyone else, mostly with his Bolt of Fire spell; should have paid the points to be a Hero. 😉 He did however take Ghorsht down with him. Sven fell almost immediately afterwards.

Billy had Jorrg drop the one treasure he had collected and charge into the burglar as he made his way out of the tunnels wondering why it was so quiet. Dicing with death, Jorrg survived the Dangerous Terrain (rating 6) and quickly dispatched the halfling. But the dice are fickle … the unstable ceiling fell on Jorrg as he tried to return, leaving a pile of treasure in the middle of the Dangerous Terrain. Oyya got back on his worg and rode away with a single treasure token, thus Billy won the game.

Billy 17a

Game 2

For game two Billy and Charles switched teams with Billy playing the knight and Charles the orcs.

Starting much the same way as Game 1 it took a few turns to get into position, this time Charles had the advantage of having the shaman, with better movement and vision than Brother Albus, being able to get into position quickly.

Billy moved both his mounted characters out of sight and range of the orc archers waiting for the rest of his adventuring party to catch up, having seen the limitations of torch ranges when Charles had been using them.

Billy followed Charles’s idea of using the burglar with his Trapsmith trait to go for the treasure, he wasn’t the fastest but the +2 made a massive difference in dealing with the traps.

Charles waited until Brother Albus finally made it around the corner before going for an all-out attack. He’d sent Kargg on treasure patrol whilst casting Darkness on Albus to take him out of the fight for a turn. He charged Ghorsht and Jorrg into the squire and Sir Vyvar; Billy piled in with Sven for support and to ensure that he had the outnumbering advantage.

Charles used a tried and tested orc tactic of wildly shooting into combat and with the dice gods on his side had hit after hit after hit on the squire’s horse.

Unfortunately he failed to kill the horse but did knock it down, though Markus managed to stay on his feet and in the fight.

Sir Vyvar swiftly cut Jorrg down.

With Jorrg down Sir Vyvar pursued the gnoll shaman whilst Oyya closed on Albus to reduce his spell casting capabilities, Balgg the skirmish archer moved into the dangerous terrain making him harder to shoot and harder to catch for hand-to-hand combat

Ghorsht cut down Sven. Markus withdrew from combat and remounted his horse as it picked itself up, then circled behind Ghorsht to take advantage of Sir Vyvar’s light source.

Markus took Ghorsht clean off his worg with a shot to the back of the head. The gnoll shaman cast Ferocious Visage on himself, which made him Terrifying for one turn. Sir Vyvar laughed at this, having the Fearless trait, but his horse decided it had left the gas on and fled! Luckily Sir Vyvar made his Destiny roll and jumped off to remain in combat.

Markus dispatched Ghosht’s worg with his longsword and the gnoll shaman made a Destiny roll against Sir Vyvar’s latest hit but caught fire.

Whilst all this was going on Kargg had died trying to return through the dangerous passage and Bolgo the burglar was having great success with 3 of the 4 treasures, he unlocked the door, took the 4th and waited by the wooden barricade knowing it was easier to remove then risk the Dangerous Terrain corridor and push his luck!

Oyya made some nice rolls and dispatched Markus and his mount in two good turns. Sir Vyvar finally took the shaman out after Charles had made turn after turn of Destiny rolls.

Oyya took out the remaining horse and returned to aid Balgg.

As Oyya charged into the combat Sir Vyvar calmly took his head off and then charged into Balgg. The final worg tried to assist but was quickly dispatched. There followed about six turns of Balgg trying and failing to break from combat. Balgg needed a 10 to hit Sir Vyvar; he actually succeeded several times but the knight stayed stubbornly on his feet. Sir Vyvar only needed a 4 to hit Balgg but he also proved tenacious and hardy, surviving all the knight’s attacks long enough to finally break away and run.

Knowing he couldn’t catch the 10” moving Balgg, Billy had Sir Vyvar go for the barricade to break Bolgo out and take the win with 4 treasures.

Game two to Billy.

All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon, ‘Thud and Blunder’ follows in the footsteps of IHMN, Gothic, Daishō and Blood Eagle by refining and expanding a ruleset that was already pretty well ironed out. Shooting into combat has become much more straightforward than in IHMN and although we identified some issues (splitting attacks against a rider and mount, Fireballing into combat, etc.) it’s understandable considering it was a playtest of an unfinished ruleset.

I look forward to Salute and helping the Ministry of Gentlemanly Warfare demo the game to you all.

Billy Decrementis


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