At the normal club meet on Friday, I faced off against Neil and his latest Daemon list. Having only received that day, I was unable to write up some thoughts beforehand but I was able to look at it on my lunch briefly to give me an idea of what I was facing. Without further a due, here is his list (and mine can be found here):
Neil’s Khorne based list
Billy the Bloodthirster – Lesser gift (multiple wound 2) – 425pts
Skulltaker – juggernaut, slayer sword, cloak of skulls – 250pts
Herald of Nurgle – bsb, lesser locus of virulence, War banner, palanquin – 240pts
32 Plaguebearers – Full command, Banner of Swiftness – 461pts
10 Bloodletters – Full command – 170pts
4 Bloodcrushers of Khorne – Full command, Razor Standard – 325pts
5 Flesh Hounds of Khorne – 165pts
1 Beast of Nurgle – 60pts
1 Beast of Nurgle – 60pts
1 Beast of Nurgle – 60pts
5 Chaos Furies of Khorne – 70pts
5 Chaos Furies of Khorne – 70pts
Skull Cannon of Khorne – 135pts
Thoughts on his list
I won’t go into a huge amount of depth on his list as didn’t before the game so it is just some initial thoughts on it.
Bloodthirster! I’d never faced one before so was quite excited to see one (though I really didn’t want to get into combat with it….
No Magic! (Yes over use of exclamation marks abound!!!). This is about the first time that i’ve ever seen no magic (normally Lore of Death) in a list Neil’s taken. Sure it invalidates a number of items in my list but that’s always a chance when creating an allcomers list.
Ambushers. His Flesh hounds will have the ability to come on behind my lines, so i’ll have to be careful not to leave any gaps for him to exploit.
In terms of the rest of the list, not much has changed from my initial thoughts. The Skull cannon is a priority for my Cannon and the Furies for the Organ Guns.
The Dwarf hatred roll (setting the tone for the rest of the game) was a one which meant just General vs General.
The Bloodthirsters lesser gift was Cleaving Blow, which gave the Multiple Wounds (2) rule.
For Terrain, we didn’t worry about rolling on the table and just grabbed a couple of woods, a couple of buildings, some obstacles and a hill.
We rolled Meeting Engagement for the scenario and Neil won the choice for sides and picked the side that had the majority of the terrain, figuring he could hide behind most of it.
As per the rules we rolled off to see what started off the table. In a spectacular display of rolling, Neil had the following start off the table:
Bloodthirster, Herald of Nurgle, 5 Furies (+ his ambushing Flesh Hounds).
Not to be outdone I had to beat him and rolled the following into reserves.
Cannon, 25 Longbeards, 16 Irondrakes, 16 Quarrellers.
This left me with precisely 3 ‘units’ and all my characters to set up initially!
Neil chose to set up all his available units first and placed a lot of them behind buildings. The exceptions were the Plaguebearers, that were put on the table edge so that the Herald could join them when it arrived and the Skull Crushers and Cannon, placed almost at his table edge.
I had an idea of how I wanted to put my battle line in order to maximise ‘bubbles’ and put everything on the base line so that from turn 2, my other units would come on into that setup. This was my first and the most costly error of the game as it meant the Organ Guns were effectively out of play for the entire game!
Turn 1 – Daemons
In the only action of the turn, the skull cannon shot at one of the Organ Gun, killing 2 on the crew and damaging the fine machine. Burrnoth could only watch helplessly as the daemons taunted him, knowing that he was unable to retaliate.
The Bloodletters controlling their killing instinct, sloped off into the nearby tower raising the blood standard from the parapets.
Turn 1 – Dwarves
With the majority of the enemy out of range, the two engineers turned their charges to the daemons in the nearby building. In a display of complete ineptitude, both machines manged to misfire and fire just 2 shots each resulting, as you might have expected, in zero hits.
Turn 2 – Daemons
Some of the Daemons started to move towards the dwarf side of the table but there was no sign of their reinforcements bar a unit of ambushing hounds that appeared on one flank of the Dwarf lines.
The enemy cannon once again fired, this time finishing what it started and destroying the Organ gun. Burrnoth could only watch, with impotence at the Daemons capering about on top of the infernal machine.
Turn 2 – Dwarves
With the sound of horns and beat of drums, the dwarf reinforcements marched up to join the battle line.
The remaining Organ Gun turned toward the Chaos Hounds and obliterated the warped dogs in a single round of shooting.
The Valkyrie, moved forward and shot the nearest Beast of Nurgle. The boiling steam proving too much for it’s regenerative powers to overcome.
Turn 3 – Daemons
With a terrible roar, that shock the battlefield, Billy the Bloodthirster announced his arrival. The other unit of furies swarmed round him. With much less fanfare, the Herald directed his palanquin to join the unit of plaguebearers.
With the unit of hounds destroyed and the second Gyro now a threat, the advanced unit of Furies retreated behind the bloodletter controlled tower and the 2 Beasts of Nurgle also withdrew back towards the wood.
Rot, Glorious Rot blossomed over the field of battle and the Valkyrie was the recipient taking damage as parts of the machine rusted away.
The Skullcannon continued it’s grow it’s tally of dwarven warmachines, this time adding the Cannon, Lizardbane, to it’s list. Burrnoth could only watch, his rage growing, as the Daemons danced in glee at the destruction wrought.
Turn 3 – Dwarves
Burrnoth ordered the quarrellers to move up at maximum speed trying to get their crossbows in range of something. The Valkyrie flew at the double to the blindside of the plaguebearer unit (in the process forgetting to unload it’s compliment of bombs). The other Gyro moved up (hiding behind the side of the building) to threaten the 2 Beasts of Nurgle.
The Irondrakes and remaining Organ gun fired at the only only available target, the Bloodletters, completely failing to hit anything in the process.
Turn 4 – Daemons
The Daemon flying wing, consolidated together and advanced down the edge of the board. Seeing the bellowing greater daemon and it’s lesser com padres looking at him, the Dwarf Gyro sudden felt an overwhelming urge to be somewhere else at that point.
The unit of plaguebearers advanced now their Herald was present and the nearby Beast moved to intercept the Valkyrie.
The Skullcannon completed it’s task as it removed the final Organ Gun making it 3 for 3.
Turn 4 – Dwarves
The Gryo flew over the Bloodthirster and Furies that had been threatening it and shot into the swarm, taking down one of their number.
The Irondrakes managed to succeed where the Organ Guns hadn’t and finally killed one of the Bloodletters hiding in the nearby tower.
The Valkyrie, dodging the obvious trap the daemons had set, and was able to continue it’s harrassment of Nurgles children taking off another of them.
The Quarrellers and 2 blocks of dwarf warriors started to advance towards the Daemons.
Turn 5 – Daemons
The Skull Cannon decided to, this time, target the Gyro harassing the Furies but in a break from the run of play, failed to wound it.
The Plaguebearers continued their advance towards the dwarf lines whilst the beast continued to try and limit the Valkyries movements.
The flying swarm, backed up by the remaining 2 Beasts, moved round the building and were now in a position to threaten the dwarf lines.
Turn 5 – Dwarves
The dance of the Valkyrie continued and it was able to get behind the plaguebearer unit and unleashed the full power of it’s steam gun into them killing six of the damned. The quarrellers also targeted the unit but the range was against them and only one of the gruesome Daemons fell to the volley.
The Irondrakes, performing a quick reform, targeted the Bloodthirster, burning a wound from it.
Turn 6 – Daemons
The two Beasts of Nurgle, two units of Furies and Bloodthirster all attempted to charge the Irondrakes but with the Rune of the Standard blazing brightly, only one unit of Furies made it in. The Bloodthirster bellowed in frustration as it took another wound in the process. In the resultant combat, the Furies failed to kill any of the dwarves, who killed one in return and two more of them were sucked back into the realm of Chaos as the units grasp on stability failed.
On the other flank, the Plaguebearers also failed to charge the Longbeards in front of them.
The Skull Cannon tried to target the BSB in the Hammerers but the shot fell short and plowed into the ground a few feet short of them.
Turn 6 – Dwarves
The Quarrellers and Valkyrie again combined their fire into the plaguebearers, taking off another complete rank between them.
The other Gyro moved up and killed another fury but they held firm due to the inspiring presence of the General.
In the final move of the game, the Irondrakes killed off the remaining Fury.
It was a draw in the end as the BRB states you must have double the victory points of your opponent.
Daemons – 445 VP’s (Organ Gun – 150, Organ Gun – 145, Cannon – 150)
Dwarves – 235 VP’s (Furies – 70, Flesh Hounds – 165).
There were no bonus victory points.
Well that was…interesting.
This was probably the quickest game of 8th either of us had ever played (about 2 hours long, games at the club are often in the region of 3.5 hours – we aren’t the speediest players).
Neil and I felt that the game had been a bit of a non event and were both left wanting. Between half the armies starting off the board, no magic phase, Neil not wanting to bring anything on until the cannon was neutralised and me sitting on the board edge, virtually nothing happened for the entire game. In the final turn where he was in a position to charge, he forgot about the Irondrake’s Rune of Slowness and it prevented him from getting almost everything into combat.
As I stated in the deployment section, probably my one major error was setting the Organ guns up on the base line. I should have set them up far further forward, where they could reach most of the board. Placing them on the edge just meant the skull cannon could pick them off without them doing anything.
I have come to one conclusion, one cannon just isn’t enough. In this type of army I need to include either a second cannon or a Grudge Thrower. My preference would probably be the GT as this would (1) give a template weapon to my arsenal, (2) allow speculative shots to hidden Ironblasters etc. (3) I’ve not used one this edition. I should have come to this decision a while back but in my other games I had been very lucky and normally struck first with my cannon. With a second long range option, I would still be able to strike back in the event the cannon or GT were destroyed. It would likely mean dropping one or both of the Organ guns as i’m coming to the opinion that I prefer the Irondrakes (though I’d always take them and one OG as a preference).
It’s also worth pointing out that in the entire game the Trollhammer failed to hit at all. Showing once again why I never take the damn thing!! (I just can’t make single dice rolls…)
Sods law but this is one game where the MRo Grungni might have come in handy to protect the war machines.
Next up is likely a rematch vs Luke so I need to decide whether to bring the dwarves again or maybe the Wood elves.