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Tears of the Penguin
By Mike Bennighof, Ph.D.
June 2009

Living along the shores of the Dragon Sea, the penguin clans cared little for the affairs of men. But when the War of the Dragon broke out between the Forseti and the Gorganun, rookeries were scattered, eggs smashed, and penguins enraged. The penguins marched forth, fighting on both sides as the mood took them, their beaks stained red with the blood of their oppressors. Many were the brave deeds of the penguins, recorded and awked forth for centuries to come on the rocky shores of the Dragon Sea.

This important segment of the War of the Dragon was not covered in our Tears of the Dragon game, probably because of some deep-seated misopengitude on the part of the designer. We’ve now corrected this oversight, with penguin mobilization rules and some free downloadable game pieces for your use.

1. Penguin Magic.

Penguins only appear in play when called by a wizard. Add a new spell, “Summon Penguins.” No wizard begins play with this spell, but it may be taken in place of any other spell learned by plundering a ruin.

During recruitment, the wizard may attempt to cast the spell. If successful, roll one die. The result is the number of penguin units who appear in the same area. All other recruitment provisions apply: There must be a leader present with the capacity to command the penguins.

On a recruiting result of 10, a Penguin Chieftain also appears.

If the spell backfires, the penguins appear but serve the opponent and will immediately attack the wizard and any other units with him or her.

2. Penguin Chieftains.

A Penguin Chieftain may command only penguins, and may not affect the combat strengths of non-penguin units. Note that all Chieftains have the same ratings but have no rank (the penguins are an egalitarian folk). Human leaders always outrank Penguin Chieftains.

3. The Lure of the Sea.

Penguins may only be recruited in and enter the following areas: Seaside, Devonport, Rockhurst, Ossum, Brightsea, Ilrog, Foam Break, Alder Bay, Asten and Sea Reach, plus the Island. If forced to retreat into an area not listed here, any penguin units (including Chieftains) are eliminated instead.

If a penguin unit is aboard a ship that sinks, the penguin is not affected.

4. Penguin Loyalty.

If an army loses a battle (it retreats, and the enemy does not), any penguins (including Chieftains) in the army will not retreat (penguins are very, very slow). Flip them over to the opposite side; they now serve their new masters (if the new master has a leader with the capacity to command them; if not, they are removed from play. A newly-transferred Chieftain may be used to command such penguins).

5. Penguins in Battle.

A penguin unit has no reduced-strength side. If damaged in battle, it is removed from play (but is available to be summoned again).

You may download the new penguin pieces here.

This piece originally appeared in May 2005.

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