Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Little Rat Who Could....and Couldn't!

Over the weekend Runefang VI was run in Wellington and I took a Wall of Crap (tm) Skaven list to the event.

List was basically:

Seer on Bell with Power Scroll
BSB with Storm Banner
2 Lvl 1 Engineers
Naked Engineer

39 Clanrats -FC
29 Clanrats -FC
3x 40 Slaves - Muso and Pawleader
2x 2 Rat Swarms

2x 9 Gutter Runners - slings/poison

HPA - Spikes

Going into the event I worked out that the field would have four Lizards and 4 Dwarfs. The Dwarfs are a tough matchup for Skaven to get points from. They were therefore a concern as well as the Empire list (very strong) and the two Vampires. There was also a strong OK list which withdrew on the morning. With the other armies I felt I had the tools and the experience to deal with most situations.

I'm going to say upfront I got lucky and missed all four Dwarfs, the Empire and the Vamps!

The Little Rat in the title was my Level 1 Engineer with Doomrocket and Condenser.

Game 1 - Aaron Hodson (Ogres) - Dawn Attack

This game was very very tight. I started accumulating points early and also whittling the Ironguts unit with the Heavens Slaughtermaster (Gut's Sickle) in it. Aaron was unlucky with his spell casting in T1 and T2. The Doomwheel picked up the Mournfang while scouting Gutter Runners got the Ironblaster.

In Turn 4 Aaron declared a charge which I probably should have held on small CR with Little Rat. I fled and went off board. However in Turn 5 Magic Phase after getting into Bell on redirect the Slaughtermaster died to the Sickle. My Bell finished off the Ironguts with help from a rear-charging HPA. TBF to Aaron the score flattered me.

Win 19-1

Little Rat - Couldn't. His Doomrocket is not tuned to fight Monstrous Infantry and so he only did two wounds. Fleeing off the table was final ignominy.

Game 2 - Sam Whitt (Chaos Dwarfs) - Blood & Glory

In this fight I was determined to ensure that the K'daii was either fed crap and would not get into my blocks. I sent the Doomwheel to see whether I could get lucky against it but failed to wound. On Sam's turn Storm Banner went up to stop shooting. He decided that his Infernal Guard were living on borrowed time vs. 13th Spell (he had no scroll) and pushed them into Slaves. This gave me the opportunity to pepper them with Magic and while the BSB survived one Crack's Call he couldn't survive the second.

From here I fed the K'daii crap and at the end he was left alive but had probably not made his points back. I flooded the centre with units and managed to 13th the Infernal Guard. Sam put his Bull Centaurs plus Tauruk Hero into Slaves. They chewed up two units but then were charged in flank by Slave unit and were broken and run down.

Gutter Runners survived a flank charge by Hobgoblins but then were themselves charged by the newly-whiskered Infernal Guard Clanrats. In the last turn the GRs went Mage hunting and pocketed themselves a new carpet.

Win 20-0

Little Rat - Couldn't. The Doomrocket misfired but fortunately missed hitting anything important.

Game 3 - John Tailby (Dark Elves) - Watchtower

John got the Watchtower and garrisoned it with Crossbowmen. I brought my Magic Missile barrage to bear on it and whittled it down to a manageable 13. These were then turned into CRs with the help of the Power Scroll.

On my right John charged his Pegasus Lord with Pendant, two chariots, BSB and Cold One bus into two units of Slaves. I was able to survive the initial charge and then set about magicking/WLC'd the Cold Ones down to the BSB. He eventually destroyed one unit of Slaves but then was faced with the small CR unit. The other Slaves were whittled down but the Crossbowmen Clanrats came to their rescue and helped by taking casualties. They eventually broke and were chased by chariot but escaped and the chariot dashed itself on the flanks of the HPA.

When the game finished John had his Lord, BSB and Peg Hero alive and I had Watchtower.

Win 20-0

Little Rat - Could! One first turn Little Rat shot the Doomrocket at John's Spearmen block and hit 28. It then killed 24 of these hapless elves who were 12.5" from their General, broke and required Double 1 to rally. However the real damage was that the unit contained the Dark Elf Level 4 Sorceress who accompanied the unit off the table. This meant John had no magic and more importantly, no mage defense for the game. To me this was decisive.

Game 4 - Sam Campbell (Daemons of Chaos) - Meeting Engagement

Sam was running mono-Nurgle with Epidemius, a GUO, Plaguebearers, Beasts, Furies, Nurglings and Drones. Over the past couple of weeks I've been using a similar list and so had some familiarity with it. I asked Sam how Epi had been doing and he indicated he hadn't died and each time his tally had maxed out.

My strategy for this game was very straightforward; ground all the flyers, poison the GUO, deplete then 13th the 20 PBs and eventually hunt down Epi. The key was to stop the tally getting too high too early.

There were some early combats - Slaves beat Nurglings but Clanrats die to Beasts of Nurgle - before my GRs arrived and took three wounds off the GUO. This was finished off by WLC. I went early with the 13th to Neuter the PBs and reduced them to 5-6. I then used MMs and Gutter Runners to finish them off. Epi had lefty the unit and try to escape the GRs but was eventually brought down. Sam picked up one Rat Swarm and a unit of GRs while I collected both Furies. I also fled a charge from the BoN block remnants with my BSB and then hit them with the HPA.

Throughout this the Plague Drones had been moving 1-2" all game due to Banner then Warpgale. On T6 they hit the flank of Bell and RoC PBs hit rear. However it was too late and I managed the win.

Win 15-5

Little Rat - Couldn't. Doomrocket killed 2 PBs and then his unit was Beasted.

Game 5 - David Appleby (Skaven) - Battleline

This was the only game I took Lore of Plague. Dave did too. I had one Warpstone Token, Dave with Thanquol had SIX!!!!!

Dave's Turn One shooting was non-eventful due to the Storm Banner but in his magic phase he got my Dispel Scroll to stop a Plague. The banner stayed up and my magic drew his scroll also for a Plague. I was however able to magic and panic a Gutter Runner unit off the board. I was unable to shoot with anything but my Doomrocket, however this severely depleted Thanquol's unit.

In Turn 2 the Banner came down. Dave charged a swarm with Rat Ogres (killing them) and rolled an 11 dice  magic phase. I wore a Plague and lost just under half of my Bell Unit. Thankfully it didn't jump. I took a flaming wound on the HPA then it was burnt again by Boneripper's Warpfire Thrower. Dave started his shooting phase and disaster struck - him! Doomwheel rolled Str 8 but then 3 "1s"; Gutter Runners only did one wound on my Doomwheel. His Doomrocket misfired , went straight but failed to reach me. His Plague Wind Mortar misfired, doing nothing and his WLC blew up.

On my Turn 2, all hell broke loose. Doomwheel went into flank of Rat Ogres, Clanrats into flank of Doomwheel, HPA into Boneripper. In my magic phase I reduced Thanquol's unit again before Dave used dice to stop Plague. I then 13th the 4 rats (all characters) left in Thanquol's unit which panicked Slaves towards board edge. Boneripper shut down and was ripped apart by the HPA who overran into the mortar.

At the end of Turn 2 Dave had a unit of 2 Rat Ogres plus his Stormvermin with Engineer and a unit of GRs about to be infiltrated by two units of my GRs. I had lost a Rat Swarm unit. There was no way back.

Win 20-0

Little Rat - Could! His Doomrocket shot killing 21 Clanrats was instrumental in this win, depleting Thanquol's unit sufficiently to let Morskitta do his job.


So I finished on 94/100 points which was my highest in a 5 game event. I managed to beat both 2nd and 3rd 20-0 which I bet isn't something that happens often. Four of my five opponent's finished in the Top 6. That said, I think the score flattered me as I did miss the game-killing Dwarfs, the Vampires and Empire. Still you only play what's in front of you.

I did think I played well over the weekend. I made one big mistake against Aaron - fleeing - but generally gave my opponents no easy ins.

General tactics of flooding the centre with crap worked. I also ran with either 3 or 4 MMs in each game and this had the desired effect of really cleaning out the chaff. The Skaven toys were okay through the weekend but it was the quantity rather than quality of units that was the major factor.

The Little Rat had a mixed weekend but when it worked, it worked well!


  1. Congrats on the big win Pete. I'm going to steal the "Beasted" remark for my own nefarious purposes. I like it. It does describe well what the beasts are good at doing.

    Looking forward to facing you again some time so I can get my points back.

  2. Yep well done Pete well played yet again. You could always challenge Simon Switzer he's Mr Dwarf atm - prob a few of us turning up at the next couple of events if we cant get our High Elves sorted before then :)

  3. Do you guys play that the Grey Seer gets to pick which lores he takes after seeing who your opponent is?

    Good reports, I love reading the website!

    1. Yes. Seer can choose spells from either Ruin or Plague at start of game. However he must say how many he is choosing from each lore before rolling the dice.

      Thanks for the comments :-)