So the curtains drawn, scores are in and the final results of the 2nd stage are as follows:
Group A – No change from the last update.
Group B – As it turns out, there was no change again from the last update, so Luke, Chris and Alex go through.
Group C – A very close group in the end. I’ll say a congratulations to Antonio as his final result has him as topping the group. However this may be contested as Cyntac should have 5 bonus points from keeping his same army book from the first stage which would put him on 62 points.
Group D – Again no change to the previous rankings
Congratulations to everyone who made it through to the knockout stages.
Qualifying and Predications
QF1: Group A 1st (Dan W – Empire) v Group D 1st (Luke B – WoC). Although Luke does have a tough army, he is still quite new to 8th edition and for that reason alone my money has to be on Dan to go through (I still think he will win the competition too).
QF2: Group B 1st (Luke C – DE) v Group C 1st (Antonio – HE). I have no idea how to call this one, purely as I have never seen Antonio play, so have no idea what to expect from him. Luke has a good record with his Dark elves but is reasonably predictable as nearly always runs a large block of witch elves as a steam roller. If Antonio is able to counter/neutralise this, he stands a good chance of qualifying. Either way this will be the classic high vs dark elf match and should be a good one to watch.
QF3: Group A 2nd (Neil R – DoC) v Group B 3rd (Alex M – Lizards). Both players are wily and great fun to play against, however, as Alex borrowed Neil’s Lizardmen army for this competition (and Lizards were Neil’s primary army), this should give Neil the edge to go through.
QF4: Group B 2nd (Chris R – Ogres) v Group A 3rd (Paul B – Nurgle Daemons). Again this is a tough game to call, solid hitting power vs the ability to ignore toughness! I’ve not seen Chris play his ogres so not sure on the makeup of his list. They are old (not age!) adversaries and have played each other a number of times, so this will also be a good game to watch. I think Paul may just pip Chris but it could go either way.
Well after no update since before xmas they are coming thick and fast! The last update posted appears to have not been entirely correct (it’s possible it shouldn’t have been sent round), so I have attached the updated results sheet. This also includes some updates from games played in the last couple of weeks (though not Fri 17th).
The points have changed slightly but there is no change in the positions. My points aren’t correctly showing as I should only have 5 bonus points not 10 (for submitting the list before the deadline).
This group is still wide open with any of the players able to qualify. It will likely come down to who manages to play all their games on or before the deadline of 24th Feb but at present I think Chris R is likely to be one of them.
Another close group. Cyntac currently tops it and I think should be on 62 points as he kept the same army book (so would get a 5 pt bonus). Still Greg could potentially top the group if he gets a win and completes his secret mission as he should also get an additional 2 points for painting and should have 2 hobby points (with likely an additional 3rd). Likewise Antonio could top the group with good results in his final two games (if he manages to play them).
Greg has been writing up his battles on his blog and his latest one against Antonio can be found here.
Luke is looking the clear winner (and thus qualifier) at this point. No one can beat him, however Joey (in second) could draw with him provided he gets the maximum points available to him of 52, comprising of: 2 wins (30), 2 secret missions (14), 6 turns both games (2), fully painted army (4) and hobby points (2). Add these to the 14 he already has makes this 66 points. Perhaps a tall order but it is possible.
In the first update since November and the finishing of the first group stage, Steve has sent round an update of the second group stage.
With my group having finished their games a while ago we had been eager to get an update (Paul and I were both convinced that we had placed last, not sure if i’m happy to have been correct in that conversation 😉 but at least I can concentrate on the Kings of War comp now). In terms of the final positions in Group A, I had predicted Dan or Neil to win so no surprises there and they are both strong contenders to reach the finals.
It turns out the delay was mainly due to most of the other groups not having played a huge amount of games so there having been little to report on.
With only 2 weeks left to play the games it is likely that many will be outstanding, especially with the 40k tournament starting.
At least one person (Stevie B – Ogres) has withdrawn and I suspect a number of other entrants have probably also withdrawn.
As a reminder, the top 3 finishers in groups A and B will be joined by the winners of groups C and D in the final playoffs. I have added in the confirmed results to the below (I’ve made the assumption that Luke will win Group D.
After spending Wednesday evening at Steve’s house with Matt, Pete and Greg in one of our D&D sessions, I somehow managed to wrangle also going out on Friday in order to finish the last of my stage 2 group games, this time against Neil Robbins Daemons (his list). If you’ve read any of my blog you know that I’ve played Neil quite a few times before and I knew I would have to bring my ‘A’ game.
Again i’ll caveat that all mistakes are due to memory (and the lack of notes).
In another first for me, we rolled up the custom ‘number 6’ scenario, king of the hill, which replaced the watch tower scenario from the book. This is played as per ‘Battleline, however, you place a hill in the centre of the board with a marker on it. At the end of the game, the player that controls the marker with a fortitude bearing unit, wins.
I rolled up 6 pieces of terrain (again) and they were as follows:
1 Sanctum (in this case a Dwarf Brewhouse – units in 6″ are immune to psychology and stubborn)
2 Hills (one normal, one scree – which counts as dangerous terrain). These were in addition to the hill you take as part of the scenario (so overall there were 7 bits of terrain).
I chose take a message and Neil chose stash the cash.
Khazbar (Great Bray Shaman – Lvl 4 – Shadow) – Ended up with Melkoths, Penumbria, Pit of Shades and Mindrazor.
Khazbar shook his head, trying to clear the malaise that had weighed upon him over the last few weeks. At every turn the Daemons had dogged his step. After the first victory against the great horde of Nurgle, he had faced sustained attacks, Daemons repeatedly popping into the mortal realm and attacking before fading away. His once mighty Herd had shrunk, through a combination of casualties and cowardly desertion, to the pitiful remnants that surrounded him. As they slunk into the swamp, that appeared to be his only remaining avenue, his scouts timidly approached jibbering about vast host ahead. Sighing in resignation he ordered the horde forward determined one way or another to finish this.
Beastmen Right flank
Beastmen Turn 1
Following paths out of the mist wreathed swamp, the herd found itself split in two. Khazbar watched as Wazzock led the bestigors and supporting units on his flank, forward at all due haste, in the process boosting both their strength and resilience. He couldn’t shake the feeling that something was terribly wrong but ordered his flank forward too.
Daemons Turn 1
A booming roar echoed over the field of battle and a great bronze skull hurtled down flattening one of the Razorgor. This was too much for the nearby chariot that turned and fled.
With a shriek the Furies charged into the bestigors, Wazzock desperately fended off the multitude of attacks that came his way, sustaining a wound in the process. His body guard took swift revenge, tearing the creatures apart for no loss.
The polar opposite occurred a few metres away as one of the Heralds charged out of his unit and cut down 1 of the bird women, the rest chose discretion over valour and decided to leg it.
Holding one claw over his wound, Wazzock paused to invoke the power of the Chalice he carried and took some satisfaction that the Daemon engine was unable to fire as it was engulfed in a dark rain.
An incomprehensible chittering broke out from one of the small units of horrors and an infernal gateway burst into being and tore through the horde of Gor, taking out a quarter of the unit. Six more horrors then appeared from the warp to join the unit. Zhurock shouldered aside some of his lesser brethren and cuffed Khazbar hard enough to temporarily shake off the malaise affecting him and he was able to dispel the follow up spells.
Beastmen Turn 2
With a roar the doombull charged into the nearest unit of Beasts causing a few wounds and gaining an extra attack in the process. On the other flank the Chariot thundered into the Herald that had made such short work of the harpies and completely failed to cause any wounds despite 4 impact hits. It return it was slapped silly by the Herald and Wazzock and his bodyguard, seeing that they were looking rather lonesome, decided they had a pressing engagement elsewhere and ran past the freshly rallied harpies. Khazbar could only look on in despair as his army crumbled around him.
Daemons Turn 2
With Wazzock running, the power of the Chalice was broken and the crew of the Skull Cannon roared praise to their God and shot a flaming ball into the remaining Razorgor, leaving nothing but hunks of charred flesh in its wake.
The Herald that had caused so much damage, finished what it had started and ran down Wazzock and the unit of Bestigor. The Harpies decided they did not want to face this force of destruction and again fled.
The second unit of Furies advanced to block the horde of Gor and the Great Unclean One, not wanting to risk charging through the mist wreathed marsh in front of him, instead advanced to the side of the Gor herd.
The Doombull continued to tear into the Beasts but despite their powers of regeneration blunting his rampage he continued to grow in power.
Beastmen Turn 3
Khazbar looked to his left and watch the harpies fly off into the swamp but took some comfort that the remaining chariot on the flank, garnered an smidgen of courage and turned to face the approaching Herald that had decimated the flank.
On his right things were looking a little better, the Ghorgon bellowed and charged in to join his smaller sibling, the two of them making short work of the remaining Beasts. The remaining unit of harpies flew into the large unit of Horrors, sacrificing themselves to ensure they delivered their message.
Seeing some partial success at last, Khazbar ordered the horde to charge the furies blocking their path, making short work of them.
Daemons Turn 3
The Horrors once again summoned their gateway and Khazbar could only stare stupefied as it tore through the former horde, sucking 8 of the hapless Gor into the realm of Chaos. The Skull cannon added to the carnage and Khazbar was saved as one of the remaining loyal Gor pushed him to one side before taking the brunt of the impact.
The Herald of Khorne charged the remaining chariot and finished his route of the left flank, as it turned tail and fled into a patch of swamp where it sunk taking all the crew with it.
The Great Unclean One’s laughter burbled as it swelled with even more power from the sword it was wielding and it smashed into the smaller Gor unit, leaving half the unit as bubbling diseased carcasses.
Beastmen Turn 4
With a sharp wrench, Khazbar regained control of his mind, realising that the greater Daemon had been toying with him since the start. Looking around he could not help but despair as the Unclean One butchered the rest of the smaller herd herd. The Ghorgon and Doombull rampaging round would be of no help to him and he ordered the few remaining Gor in his horde to form up round him in preparation of their last stand.
Daemons Turn 4
With an almightly rumble, Nurgle’s chosen representative and his beasts charged into the remaining Gor cutting them down with no mercy. Khazbar was saved as the protective amulets around his neck flared up, transporting him to safety but with that the battle was over and he could only slink off to lick his wounds.
Mark – Lose + Mission + Battle Complete + Painted Army (5 + 7 + 1 + 2) = 15pts
What a monumental balls up! That was possibly the worst game of 8th I’ve played in over a year (perhaps ever). Effectively tabled on turn 4 is shockingly bad form. All there is to do is try and dissect what went wrong and never repeat it.
Where do I start? The obvious place is deployment. After the issues I had in the first group 2 game and not knowing the rules around rivers, I let the number of marshes, my fear of their impact and their placement, get inside of my head. I further compounded this by then deciding to split up my army when, from previous play, I knew it was essential to keep everything within the leadership/BSB bubble. I paid the price for this when the left flank just collapsed from panic, putting me on the back foot immediately.
Even then I could have gotten something from the battle but I dithered around with the Gor not moving them forward and allowing Neil to decimate them with magic.
As Neil further pointed out placing the Ghorgon on the flank away from the cannon was understandable but the Doombull had a 2++ against it as it was flaming (which I forgot) and putting them both on the flank effectively took them out of the game. I also should have cast Mindrazor on the small Gor unit ready for the Greater Daemon’s charge.
When looking at his list last year, I knew that I needed to be aggressive and get into combat and with the limited games played I knew I needed to support the blocks with the chariots/Doombull etc, whilst redirecting with chaff. I failed on all fronts but especially with my two blocks of Gor letting him dictate the fights. It was like I forgot how to use the army.
Going further, I think part of the problem was I’ve been watching and reading about Kings of War almost daily since my last game with Paul in December (I need something to occupy me on the commute) and as such, did not have my Warhammer hat on, was not at all prepared, hadn’t looked at the lists since I last played and generally just played terribly.
You know you’ve had a bad game when about the highlight of your tactical acumen was sidestepping a unit behind a marsh to block the charge by the Great Unclean One…
None of this takes anything away from Neil, who played his normal solid game.
I can only apologise to Neil for not giving him more of a challenge (not that I think he was complaining as it allowed him to rack up maximum points), although I think even he was surprised at the number of unforced errors and cock ups I managed to roll out during the game.
Again i’ll caveat that all mistakes are due to memory (or the fact that I forgot to take any notes on at least 2 of the turns).
We ended up with meeting engagement which is played as per the rulebook but you have to win by 100 victory points to claim the win. I’m not sure i’d ever played this scenario before (or if I had it was way back in the distance past where I don’t remember!) so even though it is one of the least favourite scenario of a lot of players, I was quite looking forward to it as it was something different.
We rolled up 6 pieces of terrain (one short of the maximum) and they were as follows:
Statue – Alter of Khaine (gives frenzy – very top left)
Forest (ended up as a venom thicket – top left)
Hill – Anvil of Vaul (gives flaming and magical attacks – centre)
Hill – Scree Slope (Dangerous Terrain – bottom left)
Forest (top right – no one entered it so we didn’t roll to see what it was)
Hill (normal – bottom right)
I chose stash the cash and Paul chose three and four pence.
Khazbar (Great Bray Shaman – Lvl 4 – Shadow) – Ended up with Melkoths, Enfeebling foe, Pit of Shades and Mindrazor.
Khazbar was nobodies fool. He would not needlessly expose himself at the outset. This time he would wait, together with the birdwomen, hidden within the trees until he could ascertain the battle plan of the enemy. Let Wazzock take the risks, he was expendable. He was puzzled though. Why had the Nurglings encroached in his domain and where were their leaders?
Turn 1 – Nurgle
Khazbar looked slightly worried as the unit of flying drones disappeared off the field and into the trees not too far to his left. Were they trying to sneak up on his position and ambush him? He summoned the birdwomen closer to him ensuring their silence as a black nimbus surrounded his hand sucking in the light, the shadows growing around them. On the battlefield the sky ripped open and amidst a deep earth shaking roar, a giant bronze skull hurtled down utterly destroying one of the chariots. This was too much for the Gor horde who turned tail and fled, leaving nothing but their spore showing where they were once part of a solid battle-line.
EDIT: If we had read the rules correctly on the night, we would have realised that Paul could not have moved the Plague Drones off the board until turn 2 in order to complete his mission.
Turn 1 – Beastmen
Still glancing over his shoulder in case the drones appeared, Khazbar sent spikes of pain into the minds of Zhuroc and Wazzock, reminding them that they needed to be far more terrified of him than the enemy. With fearful looks to the treeline they whipped the panicking Gor back into a semblance of order and turned to face the rest of their brethren. Determined to impress his master, Wazzock cast Curse of Anraheir at the nearest plaguebearer unit. He shrieked as the miscast ripped all knowledge of spells from his mind, eliciting a shake of the snout in disgust from Khazbar.
Turn 2 – Nurgle
The trees on the far side of the field of battle rippled and then melted into a toxic sludge as a great unclean daemon waddled its way forward flanked by two of its heralds, the closest of which moved straight into the nearest unit. It wasted no time and gently blew in the direction of the Beastmen lines, the breath rapidly growing into a vortex of plague that spluttered to a halt just in front of it’s own unit. It giggled as the other herald and the greater daemon both took wounds from the magical feedback.
Tongue licking the gash that had opened in its flesh, grin becoming wider, the Unclean One followed up by casting Curse of the Leper on the closest Razorgor.
Turn 2 – Beastmen
With the magical battle now swung in favour of the daemons (and having nothing to do with the worry of those damn disappearing drones), Khazbar decided that he best get on the field and moved up flanked by the harpies. He immediately fired off a quick succession of spells at the nearest enemy unit and reeled back wiping the blood from his snout as he promptly forgot half his repertoire.
Turn 3 – Nurgle
The nurgle units moved to form a battle-line with the BSB Herald joined the far left Plaguebearer unit. The Great Unclean One shuffled up to anchor the line and with a deep belly laugh, its hands blurred as it flung numerous rancid visitations at the nearest Razorgor, to no effect.
Turn 3 – Beastmen
With a sudden realisation that he was on his own, Khazbar ran forward to join his unit of bodyguards and ordered the right flank to advance.
Bloodhorn bellowed at the nearest Razorgor who moved up to block the plaguebearer unit as the Doombull lost control and with splittle flying from its maw, flew into the greater daemon, the venom thicket lashing out at him on the way through.
Turn 4 – Nurgle
With a crack of thunder the sky split open and a pestilent rain storm started, sluicing skin and muscle off one of the Razorgors. Four of the Gor in the Horde, broke out in boils and fell to the ground shrieking as they erupted.
Ignoring the its growing instability the great unclean one fired a miasma at the doombull and then taking advantage of its weakened state, smashed it to the ground.
Khazbar grunted as a third unit of plaguebearers appeared from the trees and joined the others. The herd would have to engage them soon before anymore reinforcements appeared.
Turn 4 – Beastmen
At the behest of Khazbar the herd advanced at speed, maintaining a discipline in formation seldom seen amongst his kind. Recognising that the decisive moment of the battle was almost upon them, he cast enfeebling on one of the nurgle units. True to form the backlash and explosion took out 12 beastmen, most of them in his own bodyguard, making a charge through the venom thicket a risky proposition.
Turn 5 – Nurgle
Khazbar looked on in disbelief as the enemy seemed to freeze. The only movement was one unit backing up slightly and the two beasts of Nurgle running behind a forest.
(Edit: Completely forgot to take any notes of this turn so its possible there was some magic and/or damage from the Reign of Chaos but with only 3 dice for Paul I’m not sure anything was actually cast).
Turn 5 – Beastmen
With a loud bray, Khazbar ordered the herd to charge. The Horde and Razorgor smashed into the nearest unit decimating a third of them with almost no loss to the Gor. The ensuing instability further reduced the unit. Khazbar and the Bestigor charged into the greater daemon, losing a three of the unit as the thorns from the thicket delivered their deadly poison. The Daemon launched his assault and Khazbar barely flinched as his protective amulets flared and turned aside the worst of the damage and in return he buried his hatchet in the grinning face. Seconds later it was joined by a dozen great weapons as his bodyguard tore into the pulsating mass of flesh and with a final echoing laugh it vanished back into the Garden of Blight from whence it came.
Turn 6 – Nurgle
The melee between the hordes continued. The plague bearers overcame their initial hesitance and cut down a rank of the gor but it was too little to save them and the remaining few dissipated into the ether. The Razorgor in its excitement continued forward, disappearing into the woods. Its compatriot final succumbed to the gentle administrations of the rancid visitations, its body left bubbling as it rejoined the earth.
Turn 6 – Beastmen
Khazbar hurriedly cast mindrazor on the Gor to his left, before joining his bodyguard and the Gor horde in charging the rear most of the plague units. Although causing a large number of wounds, the bearers remained in the mortal plain at the end of the combat.
The other combat ground to a stalemate but with their numbers dwindling, position worsening and loss of their stabilising influence, the remaining daemons withdrew from the field.
Approximately 1187 vs 558 Victory Points in my favour.
Mark – Win + 6 Turns + 1 Hobby (15+1+1=) 17 pts
Paul – Loss + Mission + 6 Turns + Painted (5+7+1+2=) 15 pts
Oh how things could have gone so very differently. The destruction of the chariot from the reign of chaos roll and the panicking of the horde on the first turn, meant I had to take subsequent panic tests with most of my units. With the BSB routing and my general off the board, they were taken for the most part against leadership 7, so it was pure luck that half my army weren’t running from the get go! To say I was worried was putting it mildly and it really threw me, making me very cautious until I got my general back in the line. This cautiousness meant that I didn’t end up in combat until turn 5 which was almost too late to make an impact.
Once again the Gor horde proved it’s worth in combat and really went to town on the Plaguebearer unit, although this was helped by some exceptionally lucky ‘to hit’ rolls on my behalf (in the first round of combat, after rerolls, I hit with all the 25 attacks I was able to make!). Paul also played that combat very well, backing up his unit so that I was unable to get a flank charge with the ghorgon, effectively taking it out of the game. The break test roll of double ones had us on the edge of the seats for a few minutes whilst we checked the rules to see if the unit had been utterly destroyed or was back to full stength (it was the former).
Thinking that i’d lost the doombull to a dangerous terrain check on the charge, on turn 3, was definitely upsetting/deflating (for some reason Paul didn’t think so 😀) and I definitely went somewhat quiet (apologies to Paul for that) until a check of the rules revealed it was only a wound lost.
My shaman general also rode his luck, not only saving all but one of his ward saves when the Great Unclean One put all its attacks against him but then making all his saves from the plaguebearer unit too! Considering my normal 1D6 rolls are low and 2D6 rolls high (to respectively fail saves and break/panic tests), I nearly fell off my seat in shock. The dice gods must have been smiling on me!
I’m starting to get used to having to roll for a miscast every time I cast a spell (ok, a slight exaggeration as it only occurred in 4 of my 6 turns). It doesn’t seem to matter how many dice I roll. At least this time I had a variety of results rather than the repeated dimensional cascades of the last game (only 12 dead from that result this time!). Miscasts or not, i’m still enjoying having a magic phase though I have to now learn that just because I can cast doesn’t mean I should (if only to limit the miscasts!).
All in all it was a very enjoyable game. More tense than the last one, maybe as more was riding on it. I completely misread how Paul was planning on tackling the game. Castling was not something I expected. It was also one of the quickest games i’ve played, probably as there was no shooting phase and with Paul barely moving and no combat really until turn 5, we flew through the turns. One thing i’ve taken away from this game is not to faff around so much and just get stuck in (if only to avoid the Reign of Chaos).
Competition wise I’m not in a particularly good position. Although I got a win, my failure to achieve my missions in this and the last game has massively put me on the back foot points wise. On a plus note, it does mean that I don’t feel under any pressure for my final game. Of course I will be trying to win it and in the process throw a spanner in the works for Neil but Already I am in the position of having to rely on other results going my way.
My third and final game against Neil’s mixed deity Daemons is penciled in for 13 January. After that I’ll be free to try out some other things which I’ll cover in a later post.
Friday rolled on and my first game of the second tournament stage. This was against Dan and his Empire army (his list was previously covered here and my list is here). Dan is a great opponent and with a classic match up of Beastmen vs Empire I knew we would be having a good game. The only doubt was whether I would provide a decent challenge with (a) my lack of Beastmen experience (all of 1 game) and (b) as I had been rather ill most of Friday morning (I know, I know – excuses, excuses). The latter was thankfully counteracted by Dan having been on his office work bash the night before, so neither of us were as spritely as normal!
I’ll caveat that (as usual) any mistakes are due to lack of notes and trying to decipher my photos and memory!
We rolled Battle line (victory goes to the general with 200+ VPs), which was a nice surprise. I don’t think i’d played a straight forward battle in about 9 months.
As with my last game, just 2 pieces of scenery were rolled:
1 * normal hill.
1 * River
Dan chose stash the cash using the only piece of terrain he could (the river). I chose Hero hammered.
The Shamen/Wizard spell selections were as follows:
Khazbar the Magnificent – Great Bray Shaman (roll of – 3*4 + 2): Melkoths miasma, Enfeebling, Okkams and Penumbral
Wazzock the Lame – Shaman (roll 1+5): Wyssans and Savage Beast.
Empire lvl 1 (dispel): Light of Battle
Empire lvl 1 (power stone): Shems
Empire Lvl 4 (roll of 2*5 + 4 + 2): Birona, Speed of Light, Net + Banish
Being in the year 2518, it came to pass that his most Magnificent, Khazbar of the Broken Skull tribe, rose to ascendance over the other local herds. (Help me!) And in his omnipotence, did decree that the herds should go forth and reap a tally from the hated and loathsome humans of the self styled ‘Empire’. (Please save me!). His vision and noble standing were so encompassing that he did spare the life of this humble scholar in order to document his mission to enlighten the world.
And in the second week after my rescue, the Glorious one did take it on himself to educate (dead, dead, he killed them all…) all the degenerate empire peasants of the region. The local tyrant did raise a host and seek to vanquish my lord and master, his Maleficence, Khazbar. Being of superior intellect and masterful in his tactics (PLEASSSSSSEE), Khazbar did take a fraction of the herd out of the forest depths to do battle and lo did the dastardly lickspittle of sigmar cower in a corner when faced with the might of the herd (SAVE MEEEEeeeee).
Excerpt from the Chronicle of Khazbar the Magnificent. Attributed to Hans Beckenbower. Found at the site of the Battle of Sykle Fen.
I lost the roll and placed the first unit, we then alternated and as I finished deployment before Dan, got the bonus to the first turn roll (which I then duly lost).
Turn 1 – Empire
The mass of humans gingerly advanced, intimidated by the might of the herd. The only exceptions were the two small units of knights, the weight of armour was obviously crushing all sense from their tiny brains. Khazbar casually dismissed the pathetic attempt of the humans to net the harpies. He growled in anger as his student failed to counter the spawn of sigmar and a chariot was blasted to pieces. The metal monstrosity made a terrible sound, clunked to a halt and steam bellowed from it, eliciting a snigger from the horde. Khazbar shook his mane as the unit of harpies that had run onto the field, immediately turned tail and fled in terror after one of them was shot down.
Turn 1 – Beastmen
Bloodhorn roared and flew forward. The rest of the herd responded to his cry and surged ahead as fast as they could. With a contemptuous flick of the claw, Khazbar cast a miasma onto the Stank lowering it’s initiative by 3. Chest swelling up with satisfaction from the look of fear and envy Wazzock gave him, he nonchalantly cast a boosted Penumbral at the Stank, failing to wound it but in the process killing a harpy and wounding the hellblaster. There was an almighty explosion from the resulting magical cascade, that knocked the unit to the ground. Fully a third of his Bestigor bodyguard failed to get back to their feet, bodies scorched and smoking. He shook his head to clear his mind. Even in his weakened, disorientated state he noted Wazzocks look of glee and bared his fangs in anger. He would carve that look out of the insolent whelps flesh later.
Turn 2 – Empire
Khazbar growled at Wazzock who quickly invoked the power of the Dark Chalice. Seconds later he and his unit ducked as the harpies flew over their heads, running from the charge of the unit of knights to their front. The birdwomen would have to be punished later. Both of the horsemen units stopped when faced with the mass of the herd yet failed to show the correct level of submission. They would learn!
Still reeling from the previous miscast, Khazbar dispelled one banishment but failed to catch the second as it slammed into Bloodhorn, who bellowed in rage, the archers in front flinching from the sound. If Bloodhorns bellow had been loud, it paled into insignificance next to the roar of the Ghorgan as it caught a cannonball from the metal abomination.
Turn 2 – Beastmen
With a roar the Herd crashed into the humans. Bloodhorn smashed through the screen of archers, continuing into the Hurricanum. The Bestigors cut the unit of knights to pieces, one of them stooping to pick up the fallen standard. Khazbar swelling with power as he sucked the soul from the knight he had killed. Khazbar first ordered Wazzock to cast Wyssans on the horde, which was dispelled. Eyes narrowing with feral cunning he then cast Okkums on the small unit of Gor. His adversary frantically read from a parchment, which crumbled into dust, as it blocked the spell. Despite these minor setbacks, both units of Gor made short work of the second units of knights, the survivor flogging his horse as he ran for the hills. (Edit: this should have just been removed as the unit only had a standard in it). The scent of fresh blood also reached both sets of harpies, who stopped their respective retreats before leaving the field of battle.
Turn 3 – Empire
With a rumble the two large empire chariots crashed into Bloodhorn. The wounds suffered earlier in the battle meant he succumbed to the scythed wheels. Khazbar again started to grin as the empire magic phase amounted to nothing. The grin was quickly wiped from his face as the metal box carved its way through his unit, pulping most of them beneath its treads. It then turned to fear as the horde of empire men charged into his flank and he realised there was nothing between him and the mass of men! Despite killing 3 personally, with the destruction of his unit and the dying groans of the Ghorgon from behind him, he decided that he would be better placed directing the battle from the safety of the treeline…
Turn 3 – Beastmen
With Khazbar fleeing the field and the doombull fallen, it was left to Zhuroc to salvage something from the fight. He let loose a loud bray and led his unit into the midst of the empire horde in front of him. The remaining chariot hurtled into its counterpart and a Razorgor driven wild with bloodlust, slammed into the side of the Steam Tank.
Wazzock saw his chance to gain the eminent magical position in the tribe but sadly lived up to his title of ‘the lame’ by failing to get any spells through. He took his frustration out on the men in front of him, joining his unit in decimating the horde and then steaming forward into the bunker holding all the empire wizards.
Turn 4 – Empire
Rightly fearing for their lives the empire wizards threw everything they had into their magic phase. Zhuroc glanced over at Wazzock, who just looked confused and was barely able to defend himself. Empire swords and staves moving so fast they blurred and an eldritch shield deflecting blows was not enough to save them however and the horde trampled their remains as they rushed into the next unit of archers, oblivious as around them the empire whittled down the remnants of the herd.
Turn 4 – Beastmen
Zhuroc and the horde tore through the last of the archers and reformed to face the hellblaster, ready to make it pay for the inevitable barrage coming their way. Wazzock augmented the smaller Gor herd and their muscles swelled and skin hardened. Not to be outdone by his master, the resultant cascade killed 12 Gor, severely reducing the hordes numbers.
Feeling invincible, the smaller Gor Herd saw their chance and charged the spawn of sigmar who ran like a whipped cur, though they were unable to catch him.
Turn 5 – Empire
Looking rather sheepish and hoping that no one had noticed his moment of indiscretion, the empire general turned his mount back to face the battlefield.
The Hellblaster then opened up killing 7 of the gor horde. Zhuroc peered around suddenly noticing that he was dangerously short of friendly bodies surrounding him. Things took a turn for the worst when the other remaining unit was obliterated by a combined assault from the demigryph knights and the armoured wheeled box and the Bestigor chariot was crushed by its empire counterparts.
Turn 5 – Beastmen
In a final desperate bid to get something from the battle, the remaining Gor charged the engineer and Zhuroc issued a challenge. Wazzock tipped the odds in their favour by casting the savage beast on the wargor who duely ripped the empire man limb from limb. From the tree line Khazbar cackled as the resultant miscast killed his upstart apprentice.
Turn 6 – Empire
Without waiting to watch the humans mop up the last of the remaining Gor, Khazbar turned his back on the field and trudged back into the depths of the forest, pausing only long enough to signal the Bestigor to bring the gibbering human scribe. He made a mental note to kill them before he got back to the tribe so none would know of his defeat.
Dan – Win + 6 turns + painted + mission (15+1+2+7 =) 25 points
Me – Loss + 6 turns (5+1 =) 7 points
Due to the total destruction of my force we didn’t bother to add up VPs but Dan had around 1,220 points left on the field at the end.
That was by far the most enjoyable game of warhammer I’ve had in a long time. I don’t think I’ve been so pleased in using new toys in an eternity. It was the little things that made it, including being able to use the counters made to denote wounds/extra attacks/banners captured. Even Dan said he’d never seen anyone so excited or happy to roll on the miscast table. What can I say, playing Dwarves, I’ve never had to and killing around 25 Beastmen through dimensional cascades was hilarious. This army reminds me very much of Orcs but not quite as crazy. It probably helped going in with no expectations and so when things went wrong it was easy to shrug my shoulders.
Dan as normal was a pleasure to play against and further to our start of game discussion on me wanting to learn how to effectively use chaff, he was giving me advice even during the pivotal turn 3. It didn’t impact the outcome but not everyone would have done so at that point of the game.
The Bestigors were as effective as I had expected them to be. It would have been interesting to have seen how much more so if I hadn’t of killed 1/3rd of them myself 😉 (and i kept forgetting they had GWs and not additional hand weapons). Razorgors look so potential on paper, with 4 Str 6 attacks on the charge, but i’ve found them less than effective in combat. They are good at holding things up though, so i’ll have to use them as a tough road block rather than a combat multiplier. Having been on the receiving end Dan’s horde of halberdiers before, I was apprehensive about getting into combat with them so I was shocked how easily my Gor ripped them apart. This was helped in part by Dan leaving his hurricanum and luminark out of their bubble range and the one poorly rolled magic phase in the game was the turn before I charged, so it had no buffs. He then compounded the error in having his wizard bunker further forward than his other archers allowing me to overrun into them. Two rare mistakes on his part.
Not that I played a mistake free game by any means. Not knowing the rules for rivers and movement through them meant that I left the Ghorgon vulnerable to additional rounds of cannon and even then I should have just charged him forward rather than faffing around trying to get him away from the Stank. In fairness Dan did offer to let me redeploy the Ghorgon and Razorgor so they weren’t trapped by the river, which was very decent of him but as I said to him, leaving them there meant I would learn from the mistake in a more effective manner. Blocking my own troops with Chaff, meaning that I couldn’t chase down his troops was not the best use of them and I must remember that just because I can scout, doesn’t mean I necessarily should, especially as the harpies have such low leadership. I also made mistakes in the repeated piecemeal charges. I would have been better off holding back a turn in many cases and then charging in. I should also of taken Pit over Penumbral in my spell selection in order to deal with the Stank. A total balls up in my part from reading the rules incorrectly and possibly a game losing one as that thing decimated two of my units. Looking back at the photos I also see that if I’d angled my Doombull more I could have had the option of charging the flank of his horde. Whether this would have been a better use of him I don’t know, it was only due to a lucky stand and shoot roll that he lost enough wounds to be killed by the chariot impacts and that combat could well have gone my way if he had survived. Having him attack the warmachines did pull them out of position which helped the horde combat. So it probably didn’t make too much difference.
The biggest mistake made however was in my final turn. Trying to complete my secret mission I charged the unit of Gor with my characters into the engineer. I would have been better off charging the engineer with my BSB and the hellblaster with my shaman, leaving the Gor unit as a speed bump. This might have meant that one of the characters survived the game as at that point I was ahead on character deaths. Leaving them all in one unit, allowed Dan to concentrate charges/fire/magic on the unit wiping them out, thus we drew on the number of characters slain and I didn’t achieve the mission.
After this game I am very much looking forward to the next one against Paul. We’ll see if I learnt any lessons and can pick up my game a bit!
In the last of these posts looking at my stage 2 opponents armies, I’ll be looking at Neil Robins Daemons of Chaos. (The first post looked at Dan’s Empire here and the second post looked at Paul’s Daemons of Chaos here).
He is playing a completely different Daemon list to Paul featuring Daemons from three of the four Chaos gods.
I’ve probably played Neil more times than anyone else at the club (Dan is probably second on the list) and so I am well aware of what a wily player he can be. When last I faced his daemons (list and battle report) he had numerous small units of Pink Horrors, a Greater Daemon of Slannesh and a load of mounted Bloodletters. So what has changed?
Great Unclean One + lvl 4 Lore of Death + Lesser Gift + Exalted Gift – 580pts
Herald of Khorne + Juggernaut + Lesser gift – 175pts
Herald of Khorne + Juggernaut + Lesser gift – 175pts
24 Pink Horrors + lvl 1 Lore of Tzeentch + Standard – 322pts
10 Pink Horrors + lvl 1 Lore of Tzeentch + Banner of Swiftness – 155pts
10 Pink Horrors + lvl 1 Lore of Tzeentch + Banner of Eternal Flame – 150pts
5 Chaos Furies of Nurgle – 70pts
5 Chaos Furies of Nurgle – 70pts
3 Beasts of Nurgle – 180pts
3 Beasts of Nurgle – 180pts
4 Bloodcrushers of Khorne + FC + Standard of Discipline – 305pts
Skull Cannon of Khorne – 135pts
So the most obvious change to the above list is the change of Greater daemon from Slannesh to Nurgle. It allowed Neil to take Lore of Death which is by far his favoured magic lore, if only for the ability to gain extra power dice. I looked up the exalted gifts and they are pretty nice. Getting a potential +2 T or +3 Str on the unclean one is horrible (for me) and would boost both stats to 9!. The lodestone is nothing to be sniffed at either and some of the hellforged artefacts are also interesting.
Furies only have a LD of 2 so will benefit greatly from the Generals leadership, although due to the mixed nature of his army only they and the beasts will be eligible to use it.
He has dropped one unit of Bloodcrushers and instead upped the number of Beasts of Nurgle to 2 units of 3. Probably a good choice as the crushers seemed a glass cannon when we last fought but the beasts are tough, especially with the -1 to hit modifier and 4+ regeneration (and my lack of anything flaming).
He has merged a couple of the units of horrors so he has one large unit. This means it gets the rank benefit when casting (so will get +4). The other smaller units will get +2 as standard. Both will be reduced once ranks are removed as casualties.
The skull cannon will likely be gunning for the Ghorgon (I really should paint a target on it…).
I’m not sure how I will play this one, I’ve only played Daemons once before and that was against Neil! At least this time I have a copy of the daemons errata so shouldn’t have any surprises about the reign of chaos…