Monday, July 4, 2011


So over the weekend we had the Horned Rat campaign weekend. I was part of the Dark Alliance along with Tim Norling and Tom Dunn, and my list is in the post below. Like I said before, I was trying out some of the more ‘standard’ choices in the current Dark Elf lists being used in the UK, those being the 2x10 Shades and the Shadow Level 4 with Dagger and Lifetaker.

We rocked up on Saturday morning, and discovered our team goal was to claim the northern mountains, which meant that we’d have to get through Orcs and/or Dwarfs to achieve this. We also for some reason had to make sure we were always bordering the Realm of Men, which was strange, because we really wanted to fight them and wipe them out!

Game 1 – Sam Whitt (Orcs and Goblins)

Well, what better way to start the event than a game against one of teammates from Runefang! Sam had a fairly typical setup, with a big block each of Black Orcs, Savage Big Uns, standard Boyz and Night Goblin Archers. There was also a Doomdiver, Rock Lobba and two Mangler Squigs (which were converted using the Dark Eldar Clawed Fiend, and looked fantastic!) and led by a Warboss, BSB, and two Level 2 Orcs.

The one photo I managed to take all weekend...

We rolled up Battle for the Pass, and both set up spanning the width of the board. In the first couple of turns, all my shooting went into getting rid of the Manglers, while Sam’s artillery was largely ineffectual. I managed to get Withering off on the Black Orcs and the flank, reducing them to T1. The two Shade units and a Crossbow unit then took them off the table almost immediately! We danced around in the middle, with neither of us willing to commit to combat, especially since the Black Guard were down to about 10 by now thanks to Foot and the artillery. In my turn 5, I pushed the Hydra right in front of the Warboss/BSB unit with KB from the Cauldron, and blocked up the Savage Orcs with Harpies. The Orcs charged in due to animosity, and one of the Hydra’s handlers quickly lopped off the Warboss’s head. The Hydra broke but got away, and nothing else happened in the last two turns except for the Sorceress on 1 wound left dodging two lots of Foot of Gork, which was pretty awesome.

The game ended with me up by around 300-400 points, which gave me a 3-1 win over Sam. It was great game, and my first time facing the new Orcs. Luckily I’ve used them, so I knew to kill the Manglers ASAP, but I learned the hard way how good Foot is! Tim and Tom both had 5-1 wins over their opponents, so the Dark Alliance was off to a strong start.

MINDRAZOR! count: 0

Game 2 – Neil Williamson (Brets)

Next up was Neil Williamson with the Realm of Men. We rolled up Watchtower, and I instantly offered to swap it, but Neil was insistent that we keep it. Neil had three 12 knight lances, 6 Questing Knights, 3 Pegs, 5 Yeomen, a Treb, 10 Archers, 25ish Men at Arms, a Level 4 Heavens, and a BSB.

I deployed centrally, with the small spearmen behind the tower, Crossbows on either side, and the large Spearmen and the Black Guard to each side of them. The Hydra went on the extreme flank opposite the Level 4 and BSB’s lance to hold them up and stop them sweeping around that side. I then scouted the Shades opposite the Questing Knights on the other side. In the first turn, I only killed 2 of the Questing Knights, which left me a bit scared when the knights then charged one of the units (my mistake for deploying them too close though). Luckily, the Shades killed 2 knights with their 15 attacks, which allowed them to hold and finish the knights off over the next couple of turns. My other shooting went into killing the Yeomen.

The next turn, Neil’s Pegs landed behind my army, but one Fireball, 10 Shades and 20 Crossbows later they disappeared. While this was happening, the Black Guard were pushing their flank, and were charged by 12 Knights. After holding for the first turn, the Sorceress came to help out with a MINDRAZOR! (I miscast and lost it though). Needless to say, the knights quickly disappeared, and this let the BG sweep around to clear out the Men at Arms, who were whittling down my Archers in the tower. On the other side, the Hydra was keeping the 2 lances honest. I then pushed it 12” forward into the face of the Level 4/BSB bus, took the charge, and killed them all over a couple of turns. The other lance charged the big unit of Spears, and after some initial pain on the charging turn, the Spears eventually beat them by 1, and chased them off the board.

It wound up as a big win to me (5-1) and Tim and Tom had two wins as well, so we were able to expand further on the map.

MINDRAZOR! count: 1

Game 3 – Ben Wadsworth (Orcs and Goblins)

I was given the job of fighting the Pigstikkas again, and this time I was up against Ben’s Orcs. He had a block each of Savage Big Uns and normal Boyz, 6 Trolls, 2 Manglers, a Pump Wagon, 2x2 Wolf Chariots, 5 Wolf Boyz, Doom Diver and Rock Lobba, and the force was led by a Warboss/BSB combo along with Level 4 Orc and Level 2 NG.

The mission was Meeting Engagement, with me going second. Ben chose deployment zones such that mine was cut in two by a building, and then proceeded to deploy fantastically in my mind. He put all his fast chaff on one side of the board, where the building would limit my space to only having a couple of units out that way. He then put all the blocks on the other side, knowing I’d be forced to deploy at least half of my army on that side of the building, which would limit the amount of space I would have to manoeuvre and back away from the fighty stuff. I decided to stack the side with all his blocks, leaving only 10 Shades to hold off all the chaff, which I was pretty confident I could do using the building to anchor the flank. I would then have to use all my other units correctly to ensure that the blocks never got in amongst my lines, because that would be game over (20 BG can only do so much, and they’re not too good against Savage Big Uns).

It went pretty much according to plan. On the chaff side, the Shades dealt with the Mangler and 4 Chariots over the course of the game, and some Dark Riders came on from reserve and swept the Wolf Riders and the Rock Lobba (which panicked off the large Spear unit in the first turn). On the other side, I sat shooting for a few turns, and then leapt forward 12” with the Hydra to the side of the Trolls, which were -1 T at this point. I used the breath to cancel Regen, and opened up with 20 Crossbows and 10 Shades, deleting the unit.

It was around this point that the Level 4 cast Foot, killing around 10 BG with the first stomp, and then killing 15 of the normal Boyz after rolling a 1 to continue! I used a harpy unit to block up both blocks, and the resulting overruns saw the Savage Orcs stranded in a marsh amongst all my shooting, and the normal Boys with Warboss/BSB in front of the BG. I killing blow’d up the BG and sent them in, killing everything over a couple of combat rounds. The Savage Orcs were able to pick up a crossbow unit that I mistakenly left in their arc in Ben’s turn 6, but that and a unit of Harpies was all they got.

The end result was another 5-1 win to me. It was an awesome game, and Ben was fantastic to play as per usual. The Dark Alliance continued its rampage, with Tim and Tom both racking up big wins as well, so we ended up having a very successful first day.

MINDRAZOR! count: 0

Stay tuned for Day 2

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