As you might have seen if you read the Scale creep blog, this years Summer Wipster and Friends game at BOYL17 is going to be based on the Eternal Champion series by Michael Moorcock. I'm not going to repeat myself so if yo haven't read the idea over you go and read that first. The rest of us will still be here when you get back.
The issue now is to try to represent the various versions of the Eternal Champion on the table top. Handily the 1986 spring Journal gave us stats and special rules for the figures form the boxed set. This gives me a a really nice starting point.
The main challenge here is making these characters powerful without the impossibility of being defeated. I want there to be peril. There should be the chance of them being hurt. They have ST and T of 4 for the most part which i'm fairly happy with so I'll leave that. My issue is the WS and BS that they have been given. A WS of 7 means that the champion needs a 3 to hit a normal human. Thats fair enough. The issue is that any normal human attempting to hit back needs a 7! (or 6 followed by a 4+). Now of course I could use the to hit table from 4th edition onwards but that means lowering the chance to be hit down to a 5 which seems to low. The way around this is to reduce the WS stat down to 6. This doesn't effect the Champions chance of hitting but means that he could be hit on 6's. This is a bit more balanced form my point of view and means that some wounds might actually be taken from the wonder warriors before they reach their objective.
A BS of 7 doesn't really have much of an effect on the game except that Jerry Cornelius and Hawkmoon both have missile weapons and a 7 means that can't actually miss! I think lowering that stat will have be done just for game plays sake.
As for special rules, Elric's sword can use strength points to add to his attacks. Fair enough. It can either stop working when it gets to 20 points or Elric evan become Frenzied. Should be interesting.
Corum can resurrect the last enemy he killed to fight for him (Asslessman has baggsied Corum and has in fact already painted him up!)
Jerry has a couple of cool guns that either wobble people to death or poison them.
Erekose swords gives extra strength and multiple attacks.
Moonglum has two swords so gets an extra attack
Hawk moon has a mini lascannon that takes 3 rounds to recharge
Count Skarsol's sword has a freeze attack.
All of these seem fairly straightforward and should make the game pretty interesting. I just need to come up with similar fun special rules for the other incarnations that people come up with. I might note them down on cards for the game so that people remember.
The thing is, they are there at the behest of the universe in order to keep the balance between Law and Chaos so we need to consider that Chaos (or Law) has sent some of it's finest warriors to this mysterious place in order to fulfil the nefarious scheme that Elric and friends are there to defeat (if you get my drift).
This means that we need to look at putting something a little bit difficult in our heroes way.
Now obviously the idea of Chaos in the Eternal Champion Mythos is different to the version cooked up by GW but the very notion of warriors fighting for chaos is very relevant. Elric himself is a servant of chaos and the whole of the Pan Tangian culture worships a variety of chaos gods. If I had the money I'd be putting an army of Pan Tangians and there tigers on the field but I simply don't and going back to my previous point, they are solely from Elric's home plane of existence and thematically don't really fit.
Elric see's the armour of the warriors he sees while on the shape as foreign and unrecognisable so I'm as well steering clear of obvious Elricisms anyway.
That doesn't mean we have to avoid looking at Chaos for stats though.
Your basic Chaos foot soldier is the Chaos Thug and he is a better fighter than you average human but still gets killed just as quick. The next level up, the Marauder might be just the thing we're looking for however. An extra attack, and extra wound and nearly as good at fighting as some of the eternal champions means that they won't be a complete pushover. Something to consider (what with my load of painted chaos Marauders as well!)
These guys will make the Champions day a lot more difficult and will add a bit of flavour and danger to proceedings. I've got a couple of the Elementals but I think my mission is to see what I can gather in demon form over the next couple of months. But that will be another post. In the mean time I'l leave you with another catalogue page showing you some of the Eternal Champion Characters that weren't in the boxed set. Some of these will appearing on table near you come summer 2017.