Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Skaven Runefang Wrap Part Two

So onto Day Two and I’m playing Chaos Inc.’s Ben Wadsworth.

Ben has a newly finished Warriors army that is looking very swish (I forgot to say in yesterday’s report how nice the various armies I played were. Glen’s is a WIP, Tim’s is finished and Joel’s Empire were absolutely beautiful. That continued into my last game vs. John Murie).

The mission was Blood and Glory. Ben had two blocks of Khorne Warriors, one of Tzeentch backed up by the Hellcannon, Warshrine and a Khorne Chariot. His characters were a Sorceror on Disk and a BSB. Three units of hounds filled out the rest.
This game can best be described as a firestorm of magic. Both of us regularly rolled well for the Winds of Magic. Ben was chucking Gateway at my Bell and HPA while I was throwing the Curse of the Horned Rat at his Warriors. I was lucky enough to win that battle sufficient to seriously deplete a unit of Khorne (1 left) and Tzeentch (2 left).

The real stars were a unit of Slaves who got a flank charge on a Warshrine, breaking it and overrunning into the flank of the remaining Khorne Warriors. They were then flank charged by a Khorne Chariot and held on Steadfast. Helped by another unit of Slaves who charged the rear of the Chariot they miraculously won the next round of combat, removing Frenzy from the Khorne troops. Oh the indignity for the boys from the Chaos Wastes!

It couldn’t last and the next turn the “relieving” slaves were broken but the originals continued to hold on Steadfast. This allowed the Plague Priest to get into a position where he could unleash his foul magic and associated fumes, killing the BSB to win the game.

Ben was unlucky that me prevailing in the magic maelstrom relieved him of his whole left flank.

But oh the stories the slaves told before the Clanrats and Plague Monks ate them at the afterparty!

My last round was against John Murie of “Stumpy Heaven”. Rather than write a complete set of lies I’ll let him tell the story:

Ok I dont' know if I talked myself into this or was talked into but basically I ended up playing Pete Dunn. I got called out so went "Sure why not ill give it a go" - mind you I've also wanted to play against him so was looking forward it, but not to his 4 units of Clan Rats, 2 of Slaves, HBA, Plague Furnace with Censor Bearers, and Screaming Bell.

Game did not start well when the Dawn attack deployment rules saw Pete's entire army go down pretty much in the middle of the board while mine got split onto either flank. The Archers and White Lions in the left corner, the Dragon Princes Spears and Phoenix Guard in the right.

Was a fun game but bugger me if the Skaven army doesn't have a lot of bells and whistles. Nearly every unit had 2-3 special rules that did something nasty or at least it seemed that way, maybe its just my poor embittered Dwarven side coming out in me.

Things were going OK though particularly when I got the White Lions, Budgie and Archers into the Plague Furnace. The combat lasted a long time and was confused by a unit of Slaves/Clan Rats charging the flank of the Archers and the HBA charging the rear. I managed to kill the character on the Furnace, and all of the Censor bearers but the White Lions had to make a few Stubborn leadership rolls. When they finally broke (only 12/21 left) the Budgie was left alone to take on the Furnace.

Somehow my little Eagle survived until Turn 5 and even got two wounds on the thing before he got BBQ'd. The White Lions meanwhile got swamped by 50 Slaves kept making Stubborn rolls before getting killed off - just before the HPA could rear charge them (it ended up 1" short on the last turn).

On the right things didnt go much better. I made a big mistake in not advancing hell for leather straight at Petes units here which included 3 Clan Rat units, 1 with the Bell, 1 with the BSB and some Slaves. Things would have been Ok but he got the 13th Spell off on the Phoenix Guard and turned all - YES ALL - 18 of them into rats so they went bye bye in Turn 2 (Pete: Just killed them, needed one more for ratty fun). This left my Archmage alone and she just couldnt get anything off including Dwellers and was eventually killed off.

Only the Spears and Dragon Princes got into combat, the Princes chopping through one unit of Rats and the Spears routing the Slaves. Combat then got messy with a 2nd Rat unit flank charging the Dragon Princes and the Bell setting up to rear charge the Spears who had turned to flank charge the Skaven BSB after routing the Slaves. But before this the Dragon Princes earned their props in Turn 3 by rolling double 1's on the re-roll to make their break test (I needed double 1's) and stop the flank charging Rats from overrunning into my Spears before they could finish the Slaves off.

End result wasn't much in doubt though particularly when Pete kept rolling 10-12 PD most turns and Channelling successfully in 4/6 turns. Damn Skaven dice. By end game I had 6, count them, 6 Spearmen models and the BSB left on the board.

It's always nice to get the other viewpoint.

halfway through the game John asked me whether I had anymore tricks and I told hiim that we hadn't even scratched the surface....his shoulders visibly dropped.

So in the end I finished with a very narrow loss and 5 big big wins. I was pretty happy with that result.

Part Three will be a wrap up with my thoughts on list and event.


Okay, John has asked for my viewpoint on the game. So here it is:

I deployed first and got most of mine in the centre. John was evenly split on both flanks. This wasn’t necessarily an advantage to me as my army was down and I had no opportunity to react to the situation. I had to play the cards as they lay so to speak and so my army split in two parts and headed off to the High Elves.

On my right I was surprised when John charged my Furnace with the White Lions – and I would have been stuffed if he had stopped there. I underestimated the hurt they could dish out with the re-roll to hit. However John put the Archers into the flank of the furnace and that probably cost him the game. The Archers brought the full ranks of my Plague Monks into the fight and gave me 19 extra attacks re-rolling to hit and to wound (due to Plague Banner). After that I out-united him on that flank and it was only a matter of time before he lost a battle of attrition.

On my left I moved forward and john read that as a signal that I was coming to fight. In fact it was just a feint to get within range of magic. I had four spells that were going to hurt the elves – Wither, Vermintide, Plague and 13th – but they need to be around the 17” range to maximise effect. From Turn 2 onwards as John came forward and started to close I had opportunities to target high value units and did it. I was helped by good magic dice but to be honest I felt I had the edge with my mix of spells.

So what could John have done differently?

To be honest his best bet was probably to do what he did. He engaged in a magic war and Dwellers and Flesh to Stone were his two best tools. I knew that and used my resources accordingly. Losing the Phoenix Guard really hurt him but –hey – when a Level 4 is throwing Dwellers around he deserves all he gets. The only suggestion I would make is sometimes you have to take the risk with magic and to that end I take the Earthing Rod. I think you should have defaulted your duplicate choice to Throne of Vines, or failing that, you just need to elf up and run the risk of miscast.

Hope that helps.


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  2. Thats for the thoughts Pete - your right I should have taken the risk and just chucked all the dice at Dwellers, and I needed Vines. The Archers into the flank was a spur of the moment thing and I hadnt considered the impact of the extra wounds I would take on the outcome.

    High Elves again at Horned Rat so theres always a rematch :)

  3. Level 2 would be useful as a Scroll and Fire. Flaming Banner on Archers/Seaguard. More White Lions and another Eagle would all be good additions

  4. Couldnt take a 2nd Eagle due to no double rares comp rule, same with more White Lions 21 with commmand cost 345pts so that was max size.

    L2 would cost me 185pts which is OK but would mean dropping one of my three special choices to fit it in while still maintaining 30% core.

    Comp rules were cool but had a bigger effect on High Elves than on other armies as our army relies on its special rather than core choices for strength.

    Any chance you could relax the comp for Horned Rat?

  5. Yep aware that the comp rules meant some normal things couldn't be taken. My intention was to flag that the event was primarily focused on ensuring both sides had fun rather than outright winning.

    I think that having attended people will see that and as a result the comp can be relaxed.


  6. I think you definately accomplished the fun aspect, and if you relax or remove comp but make it known that a similar outcome is expected people will respond appropriately. You can always veto any OTT lists