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Trench Crusade: Communicant anti-tank hunter

Created by James Sherriff

32mm grimdark miniatures set in the horrors of the Trench Crusade. Important note: * THE PRE-ORDER STORE IS NOW CLOSED

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Tuomas takes a deeper dive into the Trench Crusade rules
9 months ago – Tue, Jun 06, 2023 at 01:45:06 AM

Trench shrine

Greetings, devoted followers of the faith! In this update:

  • Tuomas Pirinen, game designer, gives a more detailed overview of the game
  • 3D scanning update
  • First rules drop around the corner... and you, our glorious backers, will of course be the first to see it!

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Trench Crusade Overview by Tuomas Pirinen

Many eager new brothers and sisters have inquired what content the Trench Crusade rulebook will have. The Princes of the Church of New Antioch have released the following edict to illuminate the faithful in this time of darkness so they may avoid the snares of the Evil One. Know then that the Trench Crusade rulebook will contain the following:

Core Rules: Master the warfare of the Great Crusade! The ruleset has been written with one principle: Easy to learn, difficult to master. Covers the rules of shooting, melee combat, movement, terrain, injury charts, gameplay effects of keywords and much more. Trench Crusade uses an Alternating Activation system which ensures dynamic action where both players get to react immediately to their opponent’s moves.

The game uses a core mechanic of 2D6 Skill tests to achieve tasks. The harder the difficulty, the higher the number required to succeed. Various modifiers may grant you bonus and penalties or additional dice to add to the pool to see if you are successful. You may use any and all abilities, skills and attacks your activated model has. However, be careful! Some high-risk Actions could lead to an abrupt end of your activation, allowing your opponent to gain the initiative!

The Lore of the War-torn World: Study the maps, timelines and annals of the world at war. Discover the tale of the First Heresy and learn about the Principality of New Antioch, the dark secrets of the Black Grail and the creation of the Meta-Christs. If you dare, study the forbidden secrets of the Lords of Hell and their war against Mankind.

Weapons of the Great War: Wield more than 50 weapons of all types and dozens of pieces of special equipment and armour. Wield trench clubs, fix your bayonets to your bolt-action rifles, unleash overwhelming firepower upon your enemies with the Maxim machine guns, and devastate their ranks with grenades and deadly mustard gas.

6 Factions: Lead a fanatical band of Trench Pilgrims, control the demonic Heretic Legion troops or take command of the disciplined forces of New Antioch, the shield of Christendom! In addition, sub-rules for troops coming from across the world are provided so you can make a custom force hailing from Eire, Gallia, Britannia, Hellas, Nubia, Teutonic Fiefdoms, Hispania and more!

12 Scenarios: Battle your foes in scenarios such as Trench Warfare, Contested River Crossing, Fallen Idols and more! The more dangerous the scenario, the greater the rewards you may receive!

Campaign Rules: Play through a campaign and see your warband grow in power and prestige, unlocking ever-more challenging scenarios as you battle your way to the very heart of No Man’s Land!

Gold and Glory: To the victor, the spoils! Amass gold ducats, gems, buried relics, weapon caches and more by looting the battlefield, before bartering and trading on the black market for better armaments and luxuries. Alternatively, you can focus on winning glory and receiving unique experimental wargear, decorations and honours to bolster the capabilities of your soldiery.

Powers of Heaven and Hell: Call upon your patrons, whether Divine or Damned. Wield Goetic Magic, pray for Miracles from the seraphim or risk it all to summon aid from the Dukes of Hell. But beware! The powers beyond human understanding were not made to be wielded by mortals and their use extracts a terrible price…

Experience and Skills: Master 48 unique skills, grow your rookies into grizzled veterans and improve their abilities. But the higher you climb, the steeper the price for enhancing your Heroes.

Injuries: In the burning inferno of war, your warriors will suffer scars, both mental and physical. These rules govern how the horrors of war leave permanent mark on your fighters.

Mercenaries: Hire mercenaries to bolster your ranks and fill in specialist roles.

Roster Sheet: Organise your troops with a handy roster sheet: track the names, skills, experience, equipment, weapons and armour as well any accumulated injuries and psychological scars.

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3D scanning update

Scanning is complete and models have been cut & keyed (this is where certain miniatures need to be cut for casting purposes - the keys are to aid in assembly, for example where an arm might enter a shoulder joint). We will have some images to show you in the next update!

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First rules drop around the corner...

... and you, our glorious backers, will of course be the first to see it! Tuomas has almost completed the first draft of the rules and we will be publishing these soon for your perusal. In addition to this, he is writing rules to include all the miniatures from this Kickstarter as well - after all, the entire point of the Communicant and friends is to march to war upon the tabletop. 

Until the next update, pilgrims!

Trench Crusade Game Overview by Tuomas Pirinen
10 months ago – Fri, May 12, 2023 at 03:30:05 PM

+++Incoming message+++

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Pilgrims and fanatics of humanity! 

Tuomas has just put an overview of the Trench Crusade game together and we wanted to share it with our faithful zealots first! Many of you have been asking about various aspects of the game, and this article should give you a pretty good idea of what to expect. More info will of course be shared throughout development. So, without further ado...

Trench Crusade overview by Tuomas Pirinen

Trench Crusade is a skirmish-scale tabletop miniature game that will plunge players deep into a horrifying alternate timeline. During the Crusades a heretical band of Templars dared defy the Almighty and, casting aside their sacred vows, unleashed the forces of Hell upon the Earth. Over 800 years later, in the Year of Our Lord 1914, this brutal, merciless war between the forces of Heaven and Hell rages on. This is not just a fight for survival, but a cataclysmic struggle that will decide the very fate of humanity's soul.

Game Mechanics Overview

The game uses an alternating activation system where players take turns to control one of the warriors in their warband. Each time you attempt any action except movement, you roll to see how well you succeed. This mechanic governs most actions of the game.

At its heart, this core mechanic is simple: Decide which action you attempt to take, pick two 6-sided dice and roll to see if an action succeeds. Typically, you need 7 or more to succeed. Your warrior may also be extremely competent (for example a sharpshooter trying to hit an enemy with a Sniper Rifle could have a bonus of up to +3 to the roll!).

Each model may take as many Actions as they are allowed based on their profile and the weapons and equipment they carry. These could be attacks in melee or ranged shots, sprinting, climbing and many others.

However, there are many modifiers that can make the chance of success easier or harder! In the example above, if the enemy is behind cover, the target number becomes 9. Other circumstances may make the target number even higher, as high as 12! For example, should your opponent be heavily armoured, the difficulty level of attacking them in melee or in missile combat will be increased.

Choose which actions you attempt carefully, though! The Activation of the model ends immediately if you fail an Action, at which point your opponent can activate one of their models. So your sniper may have an Aim Action which will make the shot they take much easier, but if you fail, your Activation ends before you can even pull the trigger!

Various modifiers, special skills, weapons and equipment may also grant Bonus and Penalty Dice. Each Bonus Dice will allow you to roll one additional D6 and then pick the two highest results amongst them, while each penalty dice does the opposite. These bonus and penalty dice can come through special skills, equipment or abilities the warriors may have.

In combat, should your attack prove successful, you roll on an Injury chart with a D6. A result of 5 or more means a typical opponent is taken out of action, while a result of 1-4 means the warrior is merely knocked down. However, should your foe be especially tough or well-armoured, you might need a 6 to take them out, or in the case of some mighty monstrosities a first hit will never take them out - you have to first knock them down before you can try to take them out for good! Some other opponents, such as the zombie-like Metastatic Vessels, are immune to being knocked down and keep coming unless they suffer a debilitating damage.

These examples only scratch the surface, of course. The aim of the rules is to be easy to pick up, but offer unrivalled depth. We want the game to have the depth of the old-school games without saddling the player with undue book-keeping or having to remember a plethora of rules at all times.

The Rules will include the following:

  • 12 different scenarios to challenge your force
  • Rules for six different warbands including the Trench Pilgrims, the demonic Black Grail, stalwart forces of New Antioch and more!
  • Selection of Mercenaries you can hire to bolster your own force
  • Campaign system where the scenarios and the Loot you find change and evolve the further the campaign continues
  • Glory system that allows your heroes to gain favours, equipment and weapons which no amount of money can buy
  • Permanent Injuries that can maim your unlucky warriors in mind, body and soul
  • Experience and Character progression system with more than 40 skills for your warriors to acquire through hard-fought battles
  • Start your warrior at humble level 1 and see them climb up to a mighty level 24!
  • Alternative rules for vehicles, critical hits and much more!

And there you have it - a brief overview of the forthcoming Trench Crusade game. Are you ready to join the faithful on the front lines?

Join us on the Trench Crusade Facebook page here.

Tuomas Pirinen announcement!
10 months ago – Mon, May 08, 2023 at 01:07:07 PM

Blessed Mōnandæg* pilgrims!

I trust you are all well in the trenches, huddled together for warmth and comfort, clenching tightly to your faith and sanity. And not at all infested with trenchrot...

Just a quick announcement regarding the forthcoming skirmish game from our design-hermit, Brother Tuomas (taken from his Facebook page, Tuomas Pirinen, Brutal Deluxe Game Design):

Psst, I have some news for you!

I hereby announce that I am working on a new Miniature Skirmish wargame, called the Trench Crusade! For the last 6 months I have been collaborating with Mike Franchina (the artist) and James Sherriff (the sculptor) to bring this game to you. The world of Trench Crusade and the accompanying miniature range were already a successful Kickstarter, so when I was asked to write the rules for a skirmish game set in this world in the grand tradition of Mordheim, I simply had to say yes!

The game is set in an alternate timeline where the Crusades never ended, as the armed forces of Hell manifested themselves on Earth and begun a war against humanity as a whole. The mankind has rallied in a global holy war and halted the advance of the seemingly inexhaustible legions of the Damned, and now trench warfare rages across vast swathes of pockmarked Europe. It is the year of our Lord 1914, where the armies of World War I, bolstered by the divine powers wage endless battle to stop the Legions of the Arch-devils from overwhelming the Earth. Heroes arise on both sides: Heroes of Heaven, and Heroes of Hell. Welcome to the Trench Crusade!

So if you are looking for some old-school, grimdark skirmish action with full campaign rules that is set in a fascinating sci-fi setting, this game will be right up your alley!

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This is just a high-level introductory announcement and more will be revealed soon. In the meantime, all our efforts go into ensuring as smooth a production and fulfilment process as possible for our wonderful pilgrims! We will have another update on production soon.

If you are on Facebook, we have just launched a dedicated Trench Crusade page where you can follow along throughout the game development process, should you so wish. There'll be rules, art lore and more! We will also be launching an email list where you can sign up for email updates for the game as well. Your orthodoxy officer will be issued with the relevant information in due course.

I will just leave you with some new artwork for a filthy Herald of Beelzebub. They are the vanguard in any assault and the maddening hum of their wings strikes terror into the heart of any defender. They wield discarded weapons, infected with horrible worms that churn through them, which in turn infect their victims. Their ability to fly allows them to cross battlefields with starting speed and their plague-ridden bullets fly independently, ignoring any cover their enemies try to use. They flush out entrenched foes so the shock troops of the Black Grail can finish them in close combat.

Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzz... Squit... Bleeeurgh... Shlurp...

Sweet dreams, pilgrims. We will be going over top soon...

James

* Day of the Moon, taken from the Old English

Shipping & fulfilment update - Charging Credit Cards for BackerKit Orders!
11 months ago – Fri, Apr 07, 2023 at 11:21:22 AM

Anointed pilgrims! Heads up - cards are due to be charged soon for add-ons and shipping through BackerKit!

In this update:

  • Shipping prices
  • Charging cards (for add-ons & shipping via BackerKit)
  • Timescales for fulfilment

Shipping

As mentioned at the beginning and throughout, due to the volatility of shipping prices globally, shipping fees for this project were always to be calculated and added closer to fulfilment, once we could ascertain the best estimates for our wonderful backers. It is pretty standard Kickstarter practice now to charge backers for shipping closer to fulfilment when we have better estimates of what it will cost to ship backers rewards. This way, we also greatly reduce the chance of undercharging for shipping - something that has sunk many a campaign!

Please note that shipping costs have increased over the past few months. Also, to keep the costs down for European backers, I have opted for standard shipping which will save you between GBP6-12, depending on your country! Please be assured that European parcels will be delivered with duties paid, so you should not incur any taxes/fees at your end.

Also, apologies to anyone outside the UK, certain European countries and the USA - whilst I have managed to source friendly shipping options at a good rate for these regions, I have not been able to do so for the rest of the world. I was getting some quotes for friendly shipping to Australia, for example, that would have cost almost GBP20. So I thought it would be better all round to go for something that would virtually halve that cost for you! For the next Kickstarter, with everything I have learned from running this one, I will look to source friendly shipping centres in places like Australia, Canada and possibly elsewhere.

Here are the shipping charges that will be added and charged through BackerKit:

  • UK 2nd class = £5
  • Europe standard delivery duty paid = GBP9-11 depending on your country (France & Germany will be cheaper than Malta and Bulgaria, for example). Please note this is delivery duty paid.
  • US tracked = GBP9. This will be fulfilled by Ironheart Artisans from within the US.
  • Rest of the World standard delivery = GBP11. Please note this is delivery duty unpaid.

Charging cards for Shipping and add-ons

We plan to charge cards for add-on items you purchased or any additional funds you may owe through BackerKit on or just after 12th April 2023. This charge will appear on your bank statement as “TRENCH CRUSADE” or “TRENCHCRUS” (these are the statement descriptors used by Stripe, the company processing all card payments).

Please make sure that you have the correct card information on file. If any issues arise with your payment you’ll receive an email letting your know to correct your payment information.

If you need to review payment information, you can return to your survey by clicking the link in your survey email or requesting your survey link under “Lost your survey?” on our BackerKit project page at https://trench-crusade.backerkit.com/.

Timescales for fulfilment

Just got back from seeing the fine people at Zealot Miniatures yesterday. We discussed scanning, printing, tool making and casting for the 15,000+ miniatures they will be producing for us! And of course, I handed over all the physical sculpts for scanning.


Due to delays (please see previous updates) and the shear number of miniatures required - which far exceeded even our wildest expectations - the fulfilment dates will have to be moved back a bit from our initial estimates, unfortunately. Terribly sorry about this, but I hope you will consider the little extra wait worthwhile!

To give you a breakdown of timescales from Zealot:

  • Scanning = Approx. 3 weeks
  • Printing, master moulds, production tooling = Approx. 5 weeks
  • Casting = Approx. 8 weeks

So, all in, we are hoping to receive delivery from Zealot of all miniatures by August. As soon as I get them, I will be taking them to Spiral Galaxy Games for fulfilment (about a 2 hour drive from me), whilst sending all US orders to Ironheart Artisans in the USA for delivery. All being well, you will receive your miniatures around September time. Again, very sorry this had to be moved back! Hope you understand.

In the next update...

After learning how to use ZBrush to a level that I am finally happy with, I will be able to show you the alternative Communicant poses in the next update soon. Mike has designed a couple of different helmets and religious iconography, so we hope you like them when you see them! :)

Some reference imagery for the communicant alt poses, including a rather lovely heavy bascinet!

ANOTHER MASSIVE THANK YOU!

Thank you all again for being so responsive to answering our BackerKit survey—even though it may not seem like much as an individual backer, you have no idea how tremendously helpful this has been for me when trying to keep track of all 2000+ of you!

Thanks everyone for your support!

James

Tourists to the trenches may choose to pay for a guided tour such as shown here. Payment is made with your soul and your tortured husk will probably end up in the gift shop alongside the shrivelled, pickled remains of other pilgrims. 5/5 on Trip Advisor.

The Observer, plus shipping & fulfilment update - Part Two - Locking Orders in BackerKit
11 months ago – Mon, Apr 03, 2023 at 06:29:17 AM

Anointed pilgrims! This is the last call for order updates!

In this update (part two of two - please see previous update #24 dated 21st March):

  • The Observer stretch goal miniature
  • Locking orders in 48 hours - last call for order updates!
  • Charging cards (for add-ons & shipping via BackerKit)
  • Timescales for fulfilment

Please note: I hoped to have final shipping prices for everyone but am still waiting to get some final figures from the shipping companies we are using. There is so much involved in this part of the process and there is only one me! My priority is ensuring that everything runs smoothly and I can keep the shipping costs down for backers as much as possible.

The Observer & casting update

Well, here is the Observer of the Synod of Strategic Prophecy - finally! Mike has done another amazing digital paint-over. This miniature will have a separate head and spear arm for casting purposes (this also means you could have him turning his head in the opposite direction, should you wish). ;) 

Last call for order updates

The last day to make final updates to your order is 5th April! So 48 hours from the time of this update. You should receive an email notification from BackerKit regarding this.

After this date, we will lock your reward selections and charge cards for add-on item purchases and pledge upgrades. You can update your shipping address up until we lock addresses for shipping.

If you haven’t answered your survey yet, if you fill out your BackerKit survey or pay for extra shipping after the order due date, we’ll still receive your information but your shipment may be delayed.

If you need to review your information or pledge status, you can return to your survey by clicking the link in your survey email or requesting your survey link under “Lost your survey?” on our BackerKit project page at https://trench-crusade.backerkit.com/.

Charging cards for Shipping and add-ons

In the last update we had planned to charge cards for add-on items you purchased or any additional funds you may owe through BackerKit on 1st April 2023. Obviously this date has passed and this is due to the above-mentioned delays getting some final answers from shipping centres. Very sorry about this, but like I said - I really want to get everything right and ensure that prices for shipping are as low as possible for you. :)

I will post another update in the coming days to let you know a new date for when we plan to charge your cards.

When we do charge for add-ons and shipping, this charge will appear on your bank statement as “TRENCH CRUSADE” or “TRENCHCRUS” (these are the statement descriptors used by Stripe, the company processing all card payments).

Please make sure that you have the correct card information on file. If any issues arise with your payment you’ll receive an email letting your know to correct your payment information.

If you need to review payment information, you can return to your survey by clicking the link in your survey email or requesting your survey link under “Lost your survey?” on our BackerKit project page at https://trench-crusade.backerkit.com/.

Timescales for fulfilment

Due to the fact that a) it took me longer than I’d hoped to sculpt the stretch goal minis and b) we have more than 15,000 miniatures to cast(!) fulfilment has been pushed back a bit. Very sorry for the delay (I mentioned the reasons behind this in my previous update if you haven’t read it). Zealot Miniatures should be getting back to me very soon with a new estimated manufacturing finish date and I will let everyone know as soon as I have this information! :)

A MASSIVE THANK YOU!

Thank you all again for being so responsive to answering our BackerKit survey—even though it may not seem like much as an individual backer, you have no idea how tremendously helpful this has been for me when trying to keep track of all 2000+ of you!

Thanks everyone for your support!

James

Prophetic tactician