Hobby Update – Grudge Thrower

I’ve been very quiet on the hobby front of late, that isn’t to say that I haven’t been beavering away but my output has been more about gaming and writing up reports than painting.

Although my painting has been limited I have managed to finish assembling and priming around 2,500pts of Lizardmen, so i’ve not been totally idle!

Determined not to let another month go by without finishing a model, I did knuckle down and finish off the last of my unpainted, static, dwarven warmachines.

This was in the form of the Grudge Thrower (or Catapult to you and I). I once again painted the crew in matching colours, but different to the crew of the other warmachines (the idea is each crew are easily recognisable to the general based on clothing colour). The grudge thrower itself was a finecast model and is slightly warped. Based on this, I can understand the distaste that many have for GW’s range in this material.

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Using the Grudge Thrower in game

This is often thought of as one of the holy trinity of dwarf warmachines that you should always take (the other 2 being the cannon and organ gun). I will say it’s rare I field it, if only because it has up until now, not been painted! I also don’t like loading up too much with warmachines as gunlines are boring to play against!

That said it is probably the most versatile of the machines. The ability to both cause a Strength 9 hit with D6 wounds at the centre of the template and Strength 3 on everything else even partially under the template. As an added bonus you can even try and hit things that are hidden from view (though it always scatters in this situation).

Where dwarf warmachines excel is their ability to buff themselves with runes and this one is no exception. The 3 which are highly recommended are the:

  • Runes of Forging – allows you to re-roll the artillery dice (to prevent misfires or change the scatter distance) – 25pts
  • Rune of Accuracy – allows you to re-roll the scatter dice (to boost the chance of a direct hit) – 25pts
  • Rune of Penetrating – Increases the strength of the hits by +1 – 40pts

Out of the 3, the +1 strength is the auto take for me. S10 on the central hole is good but it’s the S4 on the other hits that is the money shot. It allows you to devastate toughness 3 elves and the like and give a 50% shot of killing most other higher toughness infantry.

Forging and then Accuracy are useful and if you have the points take them as they really make the catapult deadlier but the misfire chart for non black powder weapons is fairly forgiving so you can chance not taking forging if you want to save points.

The above aren’t the only runes available, you can give it flaming attacks to deal with regenerating critters, though it’s more common to give that to cannons.

One trick is to place the grudge thrower far on a flank and stick a rune of immolation on it. It’s range means it can still hit most things and due to the threat, an opponent must divert something to neutralise it. If it is destroyed (or at a moment of your choosing), you can cause it to explode, inflicting 2D6 strength 4 hits on anything in base contact. That is funny but is a waste of the warmachine. If doing this, I like to combine it with a small unit of 10 Quarrellers or Thunderers as a guard. These shooters will easily tackle the normal light cavalry sent to take out the warmachine and will mean your opponent will have to divert something more substantial. If they do this then they are not concentrating on your main battle line which is never a bad thing.

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Riotville part 2 – Beastmen vs Dwarves

Following on from my last post, this one cover the first of the two battles played during Riotville 2019.

I will say that when we played the game I made barely any notes and forgot to take some photos towards the end. As such, excuse any mistakes (such as what happened on which turn) as failures in memory or just down to poetic licence as I attempted to fill in gaps. The photos are also slightly dark as the lighting was spotlights and I completely forgot to adjust the brightness on my phone!

I’ve covered my list in the previous post but I’ve recapped it again below.

The Herd of Bashor the Bloody

Bashor (General) – Beastlord – The Brass Cleaver, Charmed Shield, Talisman of Preservation, Potion of Strength, Heavy Armour, Razorgor Chariot – 396pts

Zhurock the Mighty (BSB) – Wargor – Heavy Armour, Shield, Gnarled Hide, Beast Banner – 206pts

Wazzock the Lame – Bray Shaman, Level 2 Lore of Beasts, Dispel Scroll, Additional hand weapon – 142pts

38 Gor – FC, Additional hand weapon – 329pts

Tuskgor Chariot – 80pts

Tuskgor Chariot – 80pts

30 Bestigor – FC, Banner of Eternal Flame – 400pts

5 Harpies – 55pts

Razorgor – 55pts

Razorgor – 55pts

Total – 1798pts

Sedge’s Dwarves

Thane (general) – great weapon, Fiery Ring of Thori, Master Rune of Gromril – 136

Daemonslayer – Master Rune of Swiftness, Rune of Might, Rune of Parrying – 215

20 Longbeards, shields, full command, Strollaz’ Rune, 1 x Rune of Sanctuary – 340

10 Thunderers – 120

20 Slayers, full command (i.e. 1 is a Giant Slayer), Strollaz’ Rune – 307

Gyrocopter, vanguard – 100

Cannon, Rune of Forging – 145

20 Rangers, full command – 310

Gyrobomber – 125

Total 1798 points.

Prematch rolls

When we played the game I made barely any notes and forgot to take some photos towards the end. As such, excuse any mistakes (such as what happened on which turn) as failures in memory or just down to poetic licence as I attempted to fill in gaps.

The dwarven Ancestral Grudge was the best/worst result possible (depending on your side) with just General vs General hatred.

Wazzock ended up with the following spells from the Lore of Beasts: Amber Spear and Wyssans Wildform.

Terrain

The tables had already been pre-populated with terrain, so we just left that where it was. The terrain was excellent and some had even been customised, with one of the buildings on the table having had part of it’s roof removed and had a rocket and launch rails coming out of it!

We then proceeded to roll Battle for the Pass and I think Sedge won the roll to choose ends.

1. Terrain
Deployment


1.1 Deployment1.2 Deployment2 Dwarf deployment3 Deployment4 Deployment5 Deployment5.1 Deployment6. Vanguard7. Vanguard8. Scout
The Slayers, Gyrocoptor and Longbeards all vanguarded and the Scouts went behind my lines

The Dwarves then also won the roll to go first.

 

Dwarves Turn 1

The Bestigor watched a bit confused as the orange haired slayers quickly moved towards them, ignoring the blood forest that surrounded them. Something obviously wasn’t right with the stunted ones as most foe tried to get out of their way rather than making a beeline for them. To their right, the Bomber moved up in support of the frothing lunatics (ensuring it stayed out of the beastmen charge range).

Over to their left, the longbeards and Gyrocoptor also advanced toward them.

With the emergence of Rangers to their rear, they were feeling somewhat surrounded and let out a bray of anger as two of their number were felled by crossbow bolts.

The Dwarf artillery opened fire with an angry roar hit the Razorgor that had strayed to the far side of the house. A swath of blood up the side of the house was all that remained of the monster after the shot had been fired. The rest of the beasts, unaware of its fate due to the impeding building, were unperturbed.

8.1 Dwarve T19. Dwarf T110. Dwarf T111. Dwarf T1

Beastmen Turn 1

Determined not to lose face in front of Bashor, the Bestigor charged into the slayers. The nearby Razorgor was caught up in the momentum and swiftly followed them in. The death cult may have smelt fearless but the elite beasts could tell it was an act as they whiffed most of their attacks. Their amusement at this blunted their fury and they then proceeded to do the same.

Wazzock looked at the rapidly approaching dwarven flying machine and then showed why he earnt the moniker ‘the lame’ by failing to cast a boosted amber spear.

Still concerned by the block of Rangers threatening the rear of his lines, a short command sent the harpies winging their way over to threaten the flank of the dwarven scouts.

Bashor then moved the remaining forces up, with the Gor and chariots keeping a solid battle line and the great beast himself following behind them.

11.1 Beasts T112. Beast T1

Dwarves Turn 2

With the herd forces moving out of range of the Dwarf crossbowmen and their flank looking exposed, the Rangers marched up to get closer to the rapidly receding beastmen units. The Gyrocoptor moved up and dropped its payload onto the flying women, the explosives tearing 4 apart and the final one ran from the field in flight. Never-the-less they had done their task and distracted the enemy forces.

The other flying machine flew over the Gor and promptly missed the largest unit on the table with its payload (thus continuing Sedge’s long standing lack of success with the machine). As an aside, the Bomber did railroad the Bashor’s chariot (intentionally or not), which annoyingly would prevent him joining the slayer combat in the next turn.

The dwarven sharp shooters showed great composure in ignoring the sea of beastmen directly ahead of them and took a wound off one of the chariots. The cannon then stepped up and displayed exactly why dwarf artillery is the best in the world. In a shot worthy of the greatest billiard player (if that player had the chance to redo the shot and avoid his cue blowing up, thanks to a rune of forging), the cannon ball arced over the Gor and ricocheted between the 2 chariots, destroying both with ease.

With the warm up round over and they fury well and truly roused, the Bestigor really started to get stuck in, their great axes hewing heads and limbs from bodies and granting 11 of the dishonoured dwarves peace at last. Things didn’t just go their own way and the dwarves took out a rank in return and the Razorgor was left hanging onto life by a slim thread.

14.1 Dwarves T215. Dwarf T216. Dwarf T217. Dwarf T2

Beastmen Turn 2

 The Gor continued to advance toward the handgunners, Zhurrock salivating at what his horde would do to the measly unit of handgunners in front of him. Wazzock finally managed to conquer the winds of magic and skewered two of the gunners with the amber spear.

The combat almost drew to a close with the remaining rank and file slayers killed. However the Daemonslayer refused to die to such vermin, hanging on with a single wound remaining and cutting down two of the beasts in retribution for his fallen brethren.

17.1 Beasts T218. Beast T219. Beast T2

Dwarves Turn 3

Seeing their chance, the Longbeards charge into the flank of the Razorgor, butchering the pig and then following up into the side of the Bestigor. The elite Beasts managed to kill 2 of the elder dwarves and the troublesome Slayer lord before their nerve finally broke and they fled, only to be run down.

The rangers moved into the nearby house to provide support where needed and the Gyrocopter moved up towards the centre of the board.

With much celebration, the dwarf Bomber finally managed to not only score a direct hit on the Beastlord but the roll for the centre hole hit Bashor and not the Chariot. The elation was swiftly muted as this charmed shield deflected the shot and the chariot was unharmed. The Bomber pilot took his frustration out on the Gor using his clatter gun to poor fire into the rear of the horde. The thunderers seeing their impending doom looming large, also targeted the horde, again helping increase the tally of dead Gor.

With no other suitable targets, the cannon attempted to remove a swathe of the Gor but the powder was faulty and a single beast was pulverised as he shoved Zhurrock out of harm’s way, sacrificing himself to save the mighty Wargor.

19.1 Dwarves T320. Dwarf T321. Dwarf T3

Beastmen Turn 3

The main horde of beasts finally got their chance to engage the dwarves and piled into the handgunners. Wazzock boosted them with wildform and with their muscles unnaturally enhanced they tore many of the dwarves limb from limb. This was too much for the remainder who fled but were hacked apart as they turned their backs. So swollen with power were the Gor that they overran the full distance, drastically pulling them out of position and almost off the battlefield!

Enraged by the loss of his bodyguard and with the Bomber when out of his reach, Bashor drove his chariot at the unit of Greybeards that had caused the insult. The Dwarf thane pushed himself to the front bellowing a challenge. Grinning as he paused only to swill back his potion, Bashor promptly cut down the dwarf leader, his increased strength allowing him to cleave through his opponents heavy armour with ease. Despite seeing their leader cut down, the dwarf musician frantically blew his horn to stiffen their resolve and to Bashors horror, the awful noise spooked the mightly Razorgor pulling his mount and squealing with fright, it turned and fled. Bashor wondered how this could be as an Axe embedded itself in his back and the lights went out.

21.1 Beasts T322. Beast T323. Beast T324. Beast T3

Dwarves Turn 4

Seeing the mighty enemy lord vanquished, the Rangers gathered their courage and slinked out of the house they had been hiding in. The Longbeards reformed and started the long march towards the Gor. Both Gyro’s also moved up toward the Gor unit.

24.1 T4 Dwarves

Beastmen Turn 4

The single remaining Beastmen unit on the board, swift reformed and then moved up. Wazzock attempted to cast spear at the Gyrocoptor but the attempt was shut down.

24.2 T4 Beasts

Dwarves Turn 5

The Gyrocoptor moved up but was unable to get into a position where it could cause damage to the Gor without risking a charge. It still choose to do this and managed to roast a few Gor.

The bomber returned to form and once failed to hit the largest unit on the board with the largest template in the game…

24.3 T5 Dwarves25. Dwarf T526. Dwarf T5

Beastmen Turn 5

The Gor charged the nearby Gyrocoptor, who predictably fled. Frustratingly, they failed to catch it stumbling a miserable few feet forward. Wazzock (just to break a trend) then cast a boosted Amber Spear at it. The magical feedback wounded the shaman but of course the unstoppable spear rolled a 1 to wound.

With no way of getting the Gor into combat and nothing bar that unit on the table, I choose to conced at that point. A first win of the day for Sedge!

27. T5 Beasts

Post battle thoughts

The words ‘screwed the pooch’ come to mind! I made a couple of blunders during the game. The biggest and first was during deployment. At the point when I only had characters left to deploy, I realised that Sedge had a unit of rangers left to place (even having seen his list way in advance on the EEFL site I somehow thought they were quarrellers), I proceeded to panic and put my Lord on chariot into the space directly behind my lines, to prevent the scouts going there. Classic blunder. This not only took all my troops out of his LD range, it meant that he was unable to keep up with them as chariots can’t march. I should have just ignored them as all my troops move faster than the rangers. I would have said that having the General out of LD range really impacted my ability to make primal fury rolls, but I consistently rolled a 10 or over most of the game, in order to fail them anyway. Still it was a terrible mistake and one I didn’t repeat in the next game.

My other two mistakes were: not flying my harpies straight at his cannon. Who knows what I was thinking moving them near his rangers as they wouldn’t have been able to do anything against that unit and their sole role was war machine hunting or chaff duty (the rangers really did their job and threw my ‘game plan’). The final mistake was aiming the Gor at his Thunderers. I know why I did it (because the bomber was basically blocking them early game) however I should have just swung them round and gone for one of the other units (backing up the Bestigor to allow the Gor at the slayers was probably the best thing).

The vanguarding dwarves looked like great fun to play and I definitely want to revisit that list again in future. I also forgot what a total tarpit the slayers are. They are just such a great unit. Sure they are susceptible to shooting but it wasn’t like I had any.

I’ll also add that I may complain about some of my terrible rolls during the game (and will) but Sedge had his own issues with regards to the slayers. His Daemonslayer couldn’t hit a barn door (even with rerolls to hit) and the slayers were following in his footsteps.

Hindsight is a great thing of course and I’m sure Sedge would have also changed a few things too. However despite the blunders and unlucky rolls (all the excuses are coming out), Sedge played a much better game and deserved to win.

It was great to finally meet another of the EEFL members and once again prove my wife wrong (I really am not sure why she consistently worries that these random strangers I meet on the net might turn out to be robbers/murderers!).

Next up Lee’s Bretonnians!

Hobby update and Neglected model challenge – Wood Elves /Ungrim

Thanks to another neglected model challenge from Azazel, I finally finished off 10 classic wood elf waywatchers.

Some of these had their first touch of paint back when I bought them in the 90’s*, so I think you’ll agree that they well and truly fall under this heading!

I’ve kept the reoccurring theme of various shades of green and then added warlock ‘purple’ so that they link into the army colour scheme.

They were deliberately given a very heavy wash so they’ll had a darker feel to them. I tried to keep highlighting to a minimum on most of the model, as this meant that the highlights on the individual leaves on the cloaks were far more prominent.

I even remembered to use some army painter meadow flowers on some of the bases as something new and such a simple thing really adds to my normal static grass base (so thanks to Azazel for the tip!).

The one think that I really noted could use some work, is the faces and in particular the eyes but I’m not confident enough to do anything about that yet.

* if I’m being honest, I had 6 of these from the 90’s and the other 4 were picked up in recent years from eBay after I realised I really didn’t like the new style waywatchers or the idea of painting them and preferred the original ghillie suit cloak look. It’s probably the detail on the newer models, I prefer the elegant models from a more civilised age.

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And I thought I’d just slip in a quick updated couple of shots of the slayer king. The only difference is I’ve repainted the axe as it looked bloody terrible the first time round but you guys and girls are just too nice and didn’t butcher me over it on the original pictures 😀.

Oh and I realised the strange blue bit showing on/around the teeth of the dragon on his cloak was not some blended paintwork but some battle foam wedged it it! The offending object has now been removed.

Lastly I realise I’m posting this on the final day in Aug not Sept but I finished them this morning and couldn’t wait to post them.

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Hobby Update – Ironbreakers

I’ve again hit one of those periods where a number of the projects on the board seem to be coming to fruition.

I’ll admit that some needed to, as it had gotten to the stage where I almost couldn’t fit anymore on it and models were in danger of falling off when I carried it around! That’s what you get for dabbling with so many projects, you never seem to complete any (I’m sure there’s a life lesson in there somewhere…).

Anyway with 9 completed Ironbreakers, this takes my unit up to 29 models a decent size, especially with how durable they are on the field. The main issue is I put a lot more detail (for me) into the models and painted the shields with silver trimming rather than the gold used for the other 20, which means I’ll now have to go back and do the same with them. Bugger.

The final model was an alternative champion for the Irondrakes and/or the Ironbreakers, armed with duel drake pistols. I’m not happy with how the pistols turned out so will be looking to do something further with them.

Edit: straight after posting this I noted bits of detailing I blatantly missed. Don’t you just hate it when that happens!

Hobby Update – Slayers

After being asked to write a comprehensive guide to the 8th Edition dwarf army book for the forum, I’m feeling a great deal of love for the stunties at present. Enough that, when taking some pictures of some of my collection to add to the posts, I realised just how badly painted (or perhaps I should say how quickly painted) some of them were!

As such, I revisited more than a couple to add more detail. I might post some of the others once they are redone but this post is about the slayers, namely Ungrim Ironfist and generic Daemonslayer no.1.

I’m still not happy with their weapons so need to decide what to do about those.

Jewel of July – Hobby Update – Wood Elves and Dwarves

Azazel has done it again and managed to get me out of my hobby slouch with another one of his monthly challenges, this time it is the Jewel of July.

This challenge is all about characters and show pieces. I’m sure a number of the blogs will pull out some impressive large models but I have decided to ease myself back into painting with two more humble models.

The first is a dwarf slayer character that was released during the ret-conned Storm of Chaos expansion (I believe around 6th ed Warhammer Fantasy).

Garagrim Ironfist was the War-mourner of Karak Kadrin and son of the legendary Ungrim Ironfist. It was his duty to tend the Shrine of Grimnir and the temple’s store of runic weapons.

This was a model i’d been after for a while but due to not wanting to pay silly prices it had taken me a while to find him. Thankfully an Italian gentleman had put one up on ebay together with the dual pistol dwarf engineer for a very reasonable price. This might have been due to his base being missing but either way I jumped on it and the ‘free’ engineer was a bonus.

It did however mean I had to do something with the lack of base. He was still attached to the ‘sprue’ so I was able to put him in a slotta base but he stood half an inch up. This was fixed by, with my normal ‘attention to detail and foresight’, wedging half a ton of greenstuff onto the base.

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Yep my paint board does contain half a dozen projects part painted

If i’d been thinking at all, I would have at least tried to sculpt it into stone. Because I winged it, I instead wedged a number of elf heads onto the base and then added static grass.

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Annoyingly, after taking the photo, I realised I needed to wash the beard ornaments

The next character finished for the challenge was the second of my Waystalkers for my Wood Elves. I kept the paint scheme almost identical to the first, which was quite deliberate as the idea was they were the left and right hand of Haldrin Stormlight. The twin deaths.

I did try to up my game with him, adding a lighter green drybrush on the leaves and then far more highlights (the final picture shows the difference). He also got a red sprite rather than blue.

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WHFB – Beastmen vs Dwarves – SELWG Competition Game

On Friday I faced off against the second opponent in my group, Martin and his Longbeard heavy Dwarves.

It was another game I was looking forward to immensely, as I’ve played Dwarves a lot in this edition but I’ve not played against them in some years and with his three stubborn blocks of Longbeards, cannon and Organ Gun, I was about to have a taste of my own medicine! On top of that, I’d never played Martin, so it was a double bonus!

As normal, any mistakes are down to memory and notes.

Khazbar was secretly pleased. Bashor’s decision to relocate the herd to new grounds was not going down well. There had been constant grumbling and he had already been forced to put down 3 challenges to his leadership. That they had failed was slightly vexing, still there were plenty more fools who could be goaded into stepping up. The important thing was to ensure that if they failed, they didn’t live to cast aspersions on him.

The one doubt that had been gnawing at him was the route of their migration. It followed a pass that was dangerously close to the holds of the stunted ones. He looked around and tried to console himself with the size of the herd. Surely they wouldn’t try anything against the might arrayed before him. Would they?…

Terrain

For the second game in a row, map pack 5 was randomly selected from the terrain table, which consisted of 4 buildings, 2 walls/fence sections, 1 hill and 1 wood.

I was player A, so set down the first bit of terrain and after setup, it looked like this:

1. Terrain

Scenario and pre-match rolls

Martin rolled the Invade scenario which I wasn’t disappointed with, as I’d not only never played this but I thought my movement should give me an advantage, as the scenario required a player to have to move fortitude bearing units in the opponents half at the end of the game. This competition scenario played as per the battle of the pass scenario from the rule book so was played length wise.

In terms of spells, Khazbar had the following for the Lore of Beasts:

Pann’s impenetrable pelt, Savage beast of horros, The amber spear and Wyssan’s Wildform.

Wazzock took Melkoth’s Miasma from the Lore of Shadow.

In terms of secret missions, I took raid the baggage and Martin took take a message.

Deployment

I won the toss to decide on ends and as it was pretty even, chose the side that all the models were on (purely for ease). As normal the chaff was laid first, with the Ungor Raiders deployed as a forward screen to give hard cover vs the Organ Gun. One Chariot, the Doombull and Harpies were all deployed behind buildings to give them cover from the Cannon and other ranged units in the dwarf army.

Martin deployed his units in a double rank, horde formation, forming a wall of stubbornness blocking the open terrain on his right flank. The warmachines were interspersed between the blocks and his Gyro’s were placed to make use of the cover of the buildings.

Despite Martin finishing deploying his units first, I sneaked the first turn.

(Note: Martin forgot his movement trays, hence the McGivered envelopes used instead).

2. Deployment

2. Deployment3. Deployment4. Deployment5. Deployment6. Deployment

Beastmen Turn 1

With an almighty roar, Cattleclysm flew forward into the shadow of a house near the dwarf lines. The rest of the herd responded in kind and stampeded straight towards the mass of stunties.

The two units of raiders tried some speculative shooting towards the war machines but failed to do anything. Magic was similarly ineffective with the 2 Runesmiths smothering the winds of magic before they could coalesce into a form Khazbar could use.

3. Turn 1 - Beasts

7. Turn 1 - Beastmen8. Turn 1 - Beastmen

Dwarf Turn 1

The front ranks of the dwarf lines consolidated their positions, with the right most unit advancing slightly. The Longbeards in reserve executed a reform into a column and moved in lockstep towards the buildings. The quarrellers spotted the nearby Doombull and hurried into the nearby building. The two Gyrocoptors flew up in support throwing their bombs on the frothing bull beneath them. The lack of air at altitude had obvious affected the judgement of the dwarf daredevils, as despite multiple explosions, the Minotaur remained unharmed.

The Organ Gun opened up on the Beastmen runts who had dared to target it and obliterated 3 of the twisted ones. Under the stern gaze of Bashor, they held their nerve.

The cannon the targeted one of the Razorgor and the crew could only stare as the shot ricocheted off one of the tusks, leaving it unharmed.

4. Turn 1 - Dwarves

9. Turn 1 - Dwarf10. Turn 1 - Dwarf

Beastmen Turn 2

Cattleclysm charged at the cottage, smashing the door from its frame. Despite tearing the first three quarrellers apart, their sacrifice gave the others enough time to repel the assault.

Khazbar could only growl in frustration as spell after spell was nullified by the runepriests. To top it off his increasing irritation then caused him to lose concentration. Something would have to be done about them!

With a look of feral cunning on his face, Khazbar sent the Razorgor charging into the flanking unit of Longbeards, taking control of it’s primitive mind he directed it to attack the interfering Runesmith. His control did nothing more than handicap it’s natural aggression and it fluffed it’s attacks and was summarily cut down.

Casting fearful glances behind them, as Bashor bellowed at them, the Ungor moved up to block the central Longbeard unit and the Organ Guns field of fire. The pressure was obviously too much for them and all the shots they then fired at the dwarf unit, failed to inflict any damage.

5. Turn 2 - Beasts

11. Turn 2 - Beastmen12. Turn 2 - Beastmen13. Turn 2 - Beastmen

Dwarf Turn 2

After barely breaking a sweat over the Razorgor, the Longbeards decided they needed some more light exercise and so charged into the nearest chariot. This was too much for the crew who legged it after the dwarves carved them up a little. Deciding they still needed a further workout, they followed up and crashed into the immense block of Gor behind.

With a bit of breathing space, after having repelled the Doombull, the crossbow armed dwarves targeted the raiders that were blocking the Orgun Guns field of fire, slaying one of the two remaining short horns but more importantly giving it a clear shot on the Bestigor.

With a shouted command from the dwarf lord, the two warmachine crews swivelled their machines and opened up on Bashor and his bodyguard. Both Gyrocoptors also moved up to support the attack and engulfed the unit in a double helping of boiling water. When the smoke and steam had dissipated, there were fourteen bodies in a dismembered and parboiled state!

5. Turn 2 - Dwarves

14. Turn 2 - Dwarf15. Turn 2 - Dwarf

Beastmen Turn 3

Cattleclysm again stormed the building. This time the Quarrellers weren’t able to contain the psychotic Doombull and 5 deaths was enough to convince the remaining duo that they ought to report the situation to their liege in the safety of the main lines.

Smelling it’s favourite food, dwarf patties, the remaining Razorgor, charged into the dwarf unit opposite. A few minutes later, it was the dwarves who were feasting on the haunch of the butchered animal. They then made short work of the chariot that had joined it it the assault. As the crew died, they cast last confused glances at the unit of smirking Bestigor that had pulled up short during the charge and left them to their fate.

In a move displaying all the courage that Harpies are renown for, they bravely moved up behind the gyro’s threatening to rear charge them.

Not liking the thought of facing the horde of dwarves and seeing easier prey, one unit of Ungors moved to attack the cannon crew. The plucky raiders managed to kill one of the dwarves whilst only losing one of their number!

The other remaining Ungor came to the realisation that by staying in the open he was dead meat and also charged forward, swerving to avoid the same horde but targeting the Organ gun crew instead, attempting to tie it up in combat. The dwarves hadn’t signed up to the game plan though and the only thing he gained for his trouble was a swift execution.

Khazbar saw yet another one of his spells dispelled, this time by one of the hated smiths invoking the runes on his stave. His temper finally snapped and he forced Savage Beast on himself. Imbued with unnatural power he laid into the Longbeards in front of him, crushing skulls with each swing. Each kill allowed him to absorb their souls and he visibly started to glow with power.

6. Turn 3 - Beasts

16. Turn 3 - Beastmen17. Turn 3 - Beastmen18. Turn 3 - Beastmen19. Turn 3 - Beastmen

Dwarf Turn 3

Neither Gyro were falling for the old ‘leave myself open for a rear charge’ trick and both moved and targeted the Harpies, with 3 of the bird women falling from the sky. However they had done their task and distracted the Gyrocoptors from attacking the more valuable Bestigor.

The organ gun crew again turned their attention to the Bestigor. After half the barrels failed to fire, they realised that an arm of the freshly killed Ungor had wedged in the firing mechanism and moved to clear the blockage.

The Ungors, getting carried away with their success, flew into a frenzy and managed to kill another of the cannon crew.

Khazbar continued his rampage and in the process drew in more souls. The Gor in his unit, followed his lead and butchered an entire rank of the longbeards.

7. Turn 3 - Dwarves

20. Turn 3 - Dwarf21. Turn 3 - Dwarf

Beastmen Turn 4

Bashor led the remaining Bestigor into combat with the Longbeards. Khazbar threw wildform on them, boosting both their strength and toughness. The dwarf lord quickly issued a challenge and Bashor, not liking the look of the heavily armoured dwarf, pushed forward the champion to accept. He looked on in shock, as not only did the lord fail to kill him but the champion managed to wound him in return! Distracted and shaking his mane in disbelief, one of the dwarves managed to also wound him. He looked down at the gash in surprise and then took down four of the dwarves in retaliation. In the general melee the dwarves and Bestigor continued to slay one another but the wiley dwarves concentrated most of their attacks on the vulnerable Shaman, swiftly bringing him down.

Seeing Khazbar swollen with power, the Runesmith desperately invoked his runes to dispel Savage Beast but the Great Bray Shaman, aided with his enchanted weapon, still continued to slay dwarves left and right, as did the Gor accompanying him.

The heroic Ungor finally finished off the cannon crew, spiked the weapon to ensure it would serve no more purpose and then looked around, drunk on power, for their next victims.

8. Turn 4 - Beasts

22. Turn 4 - Beastmen

(Edit – after writing this and looking at the photos, it looks like the dwarves may have charged the Bestigor in turn 4, with the turn 3 Bestigor charge having failed. My notes didn’t say either way but it’s the only thing that makes the photos make sense, especially with the unit positioning and lack of casualties caused in turn 4).

Dwarf Turn 4

With no other targets in range, the organ gun shredded the remaining few harpies.

The dwarf BSB and remaining quarrellers, both charged the Ungors. After slapping the frenzy out of them and cutting down 3, the final member of the group realised they may have gotten a bit too big for their boots and unsurprisingly legged it towards the edge of the battlefield.

The Bestigor/Longbeard combat continued to wage but with a brief lull in combat as the Dwarf Lord finally slew the Gouge-Horn.

With the flanking Longbeard unit rapidly depleting, there was no longer a target rich environment for the Gor, so they turned their attention to the embedded Runesmith. The Smith was made of much greater mettle than his kin any shrugged off everything thrown at him.

9. Turn 4 - Dwarves

Beastmen Turn 5

Cattleclysm, scenting blood in the air, ignored the obvious target in front of him and flew into the rear of the ongoing combat, roaring a challenge as he flew. The already wounded lord decided he didn’t like the odds of that fight and decided he was better off skulking in the ranks of the unit. His ability to hide looked far less likely as the Doombull, Beastlord and Bestigor’s combined attacks made mincemeat of the unit. It was only the power of the ancestral standard that kept them in the fight.

In the other combat, sheer weight of numbers finally won out and the Runesmith and his remaining bodyguard fell beneath the cloven hooves of their adversaries.

10. Turn 5 - Beasts

23. Turn 5 - Beastmen24. Turn 5 - Beastmen

Dwarf Turn 5

The two Gyros moved to give the Gor block their full attention and the steam guns went to work removing a number of them.

The, so far, untouched, unit of Longbeards, charged into the rear of the Doombull. His heavy armour and rage ensured he still inflicted more damage than he received.

The battered units of Bestigor and Longbeards kept their fight going and by the end, the combat had drawn.

11. Turn 5 - Dwarves

Results

Me – Win (15) + Fully Painted (2) = 17 points

Martin – Loss (5) = 5 points

Conclusion

That was a very, very close win.

To put that statement into perspective. The comp pack states that a unit must have 5 models (3 monstrous), including a standard, general or bsb, to constitute a scoring unit. After the final fight I had 4 Bestigor left and the Beastlord (so 5 models), which gave me a scoring unit strength of 3 (2 for the general and 1 for the Standard). His Longbeard unit had 3 longbeards left plus the general, so with 4 models, it was one dwarf under the 5 minimum so neither the unit standard or general counted.

If he had managed one more casualty on the Bestigor, or if I had failed to kill one of the dwarf longbeards in his general’s units it would have ended up a draw! As I said, very very close.

There were a number of mistakes made by both of us. My biggest one was splitting attacks from the Gor unit between the Longbeards and the Runesmith for two consecutive combats. Not only did he pull an amazing amount of saves out the bag on the Runesmith and the last few dwarves but there was no need for me to split the attacks. I should have directed all of them into the unit to remove the stubborn banner and then run down the Runesmith. It just shows how frustration can influence decisions as with the amount of dispels he had thrown out in the game, I just wanted to kill the Runesmith.

The Razorgor, again, each only hit with one of their four attacks. Tactics may talk about using them as ‘assassins’ but I haven’t ever had much luck in that roll. I still think the best use of them is to sit in front of enemy units to redirect/annoy.

On a side note, his lord shouldn’t have managed to avoid the Doombull’s challenge as being mounted on an oathstone he has to accept challenges.

In terms of what went well. The Gor herd was excellent. 50 is definitely the right number to pump out a shed load of attacks whilst absorbing casualties.

I also finally managed to get Khazbar into combat with savage beasts on and it was impressive. He generated a shed load of power dice from the jagged dagger and this allowed me to overcome the persistent low winds of magic rolls. With the ‘Brass Cleaver’, magic weapon, this meant he was attacking with 8 (2+3+3) strength 8 (4+1+3) attacks and on average, this generated 3 additional dice per combat round. Not too shabby at all. Going forward, if I went this build again, I would probably forgo the additional attacks from the brass cleaver and go a slightly more defensive build with the fencers blades. This would drop the maximum attacks by two but would almost ensure that he always hit on a 3+ and anyone with a WS of 4 or under will only hit him on a 5+. This would likely make the difference of attacks negligible.

Even playing dwarves, I hadn’t appreciated how much of total pain the stubborn banners can be as it effectively makes any unit with one a tarpit, as I found out! Again the Gyro’s also proved their worth, though I think they could have been more effective in the game.

Overall it was a great, friendly game that went down to the wire. Probably my closest in a long time and i’d definitely play Martin again at a future date.