Friday, 13 September 2013

The Last of the Mohicanss

 After watching the 1993 movie The Last of the Mohicans a few days ago, my son began to think: "Could the final fight scene in the movie be done with 'Where Heroes Dare' rules? Since this was my day off, we did the battle on the kitchen table, using Iron Ivan's 'Where Heroes Dare' rules. The sides were limited. I took the Huron war party of Magua (the 'lead') and 5 warriors ("followers"), all armed with musket, hatchet, and knife. Rob took the Mohican group, of Nathaniel ("lead" with long rifle, hatchet, and knife), Chingachgook ('lead' with musket and rifle-stock warclub, a two-handed weapon), and Uncas ('Companion" with musket, hatchet, and knife.)
We made a few 'adjustments' to the stock rules:

  • The Mohican war party had more than one "lead" or main character.
  • The long rifle could not be reloaded while moving while muskets could.
  • The rifle-stock warclub hit like a hatchet/tomahawk, but did more damage.
  • The game was played on a two-level cliffside field and the figure could climb up or down at a 3" move penalty.
  • Fighting with two weapons means that missing with the main weapon -tomahawk- the figure could roll again with the knife, which had a lesser chance of wounding.
  • A lot of the "Where Heroes Dare" pulp-ish rules were applied - "Tough as nails", Dead-eye Dick", "Bum Rush", etc. I won't go into them now but I'll note them in the AAR.
A gun-stock war club - just the thing for close-quarters fighting against enemy tribes... or zombies.

The short game was sort of 'cinematic' but it was a blast. We took our cues from the movie. The Hurons were travelling along a cliffside path (without Alice Monro) with Nathaniel and Chingachgook following and Uncas around a corner in front of the party.

Magua directs traffic and follows the scout.

The rest of the Huron war party
(All Blue Moon Native Warrior figures - very nice in my opinion.)

Chingachgook (in red) and Nathaniel (in white)

Uncas awaits the Huron
From the movie, Magua (Wes Studi) begins the attack on the folks leaving Fort William Henry
(I have NOWHERE near enough native figures to do that scene!)

Nathaniel moved up to the top level and fired his long rifle, missing the trailing brave. Two of the Huron turned to face the running followers. The rest continued, right into Uncas. In hand to hand fighting, Uncas took down the first Huron and then fought with Magua. Since Magua could take three wounds and Uncas two, the struggle went on for a while. I imagined it like the fast and nasty hand to hand fighting in the movie, where hatchet and knife were used on the run - quickly and deadly. Magua finally knocked down Uncas and he had to fall off the cliff. (Rob required it - just like the movie.)

Uncas faces the Huron on the upper level of the cliff.

Magua squares off against Uncas.
(The blue bingo chips mean the musket is fired and needs to be reloaded.)

Uncas goes down the cliff in a brave death.

Meanwhile, Chingachgook and Nathaniel raced to follow. Chingachgook had the WHD "Schtick" of Bum Rush which allowed him to add 3" to his run move if he is charging into combat, which he did battling the two last Huron warriors. Being a main character and hero, Chingachgook put those two out of action in short order. Nathaniel fired again and missed. ("Hawkeye" indeed!) 

Chingachgook mixes it up with the first of the Huron.

One down, one to go.

Two down... where are the rest?

Nathaniel continues to fire from his upper level nook.

Eventually Magua turned back to face Chingachgook who was looking for revenge for the death of his son. This time, however, Nathaniel fired and took out Magua (who had been wounded twice by Uncas.) This differed from the movie where Chingachgook (Russell Means) and Magua (Wes Studi) fought hand to hand.

The climactic fight scene.
Although this was supposed to be New York, the movie was filmed in the Smokey Mountains of the Carolinas. I was raised in the Alleghenies of Pennsylvania, what the Lenape tribe called the "Kittitinny" -  "the Endless Mountains." I love my home in Canada, but I miss the mountains some days.

Chingachgook attacks the Huron warrior who missed him during the shooting.

Chingachgook takes his revenge on what's left of the war party.

While the hand to hand fighting goes on, Nathaniel despatches Magua.
The last brave refused to either surrender or retreat, but fought to the bitter end.

No one is left to face Chingachgook, the last of the Mohicans.

"Great Spirit, Maker of All Life. A warrior goes to you swift and straight as an arrow shot into the sun. Welcome him and let him take his place at the council fire of my people. He is Uncas, my son. Tell them to be patient and ask death for speed; for they are all there but one - I, Chingachgook - Last of the Mohicans."
(Chingachgook's prayer at the end of the film)
"Le Long Carabine" indeed!
This made for a fun short game with gave Rob and I ideas for our next 1812 adventure game, adding a little RPG effect to the game. It may work; it may not, but it'll be fun to see.
If, by chance, you haven't seen The Last of the Mohicans, by all means, see it when you can. It's worth it. It might be a little "Hollywood" with the romance between Hawkeye (Daniel Day-Lewis) and Cora Munro (Madeleine Stowe), but the scenery and the action are wonderful. I recommend it.


  1. The movie's finale - the chase up the mountainside I have always felt was as fine a cinematic denouement that I've ever watched. The scenery is beautiful, the action dramatic, and the accompanying music - 'The Gael' - sounds to me exactly as a pibroch should sound (strangely, though, it sounds better with violin than with the pipes, and I am very fond of the pipes).

    Altogether, as near to cinematic perfection as one could wish for.

    Thanks for the info on the gun-stock war club. I was never quite sure what I was looking at there.

  2. I think I must agree with you on all your points. I love the music too.
    The Gun-stock club is an interesting piece. I makes we wonder if the shape was chosen to mimic a musket and have a part in the gun's power to kill.

  3. Very cool, enjoyed reading about this gameplay!