Monday, January 17, 2022

KOW - Varangur vs. Forces of the Abyss in "Control"

On Saturday Lliam and I got to play our first KoW game against each other in 4-5 years. He had his Forces of the Abyss while I used my newly updated Varangur. 

Rolled up "Control" for the mission. Each of six sectors worth 1 point with the exception of your opponent's central sector which is worth 2 points.

The FotA started with US21 while the Varangar had 18. Lliam had 12 drops to my 11.

Fallen and Succubi Slog It Out

In terms of terrain I selected 10 varied pieces and then randomly placed them using die rolls. LLiam chose to go on the far side of the table.

FotA had two Gargoyle units on the base edge and the two regiments of Succubi up on the deployment line (between which is the Temptress) On the hill are a Lower Abyssal Horde, marshalled by a Efreet and a Chroneas at the base.

From the far end of the table you can see the rest of the FotA forces. Two small units of Tortured Souls, the Abyssal Horsemen Horde and the Well of Souls

So I went in with a plan for this army of it working in two mirror image battlegroups. And immediately threw it out the window the first time I deployed it 😊

Instead of what I had envisaged, I split the army into three groups - fast chaff wing on my right (2x Horse Raiders, 1x Snow Fox), an Infantry centre (2x Fallen Hordes, Lord on Frostfang, Magos) and cavalry wing on the left (Korgan Regiment, Frostfang Horde, Lord on Frostfang and Snow Foxes). 

My thinking was predicated once I saw where Lliam had put his Tortured Souls. I thought that these two units had the ability to remove any of my chaff units and I needed these to grab sectors. I also felt that my cavalry wing could win the left of the table.

My Cavalry wing sitting on the hill, Snow Foxes behind.

Fall in centre with Lord and Magos. Chaff on flank

Lliam won roll off and chose to go first. He pushed forward with everything staying outside my charge range. I countered by pushing my chaff forward in an attempt to outflank the FotA but managed to lose a unit of Horse Raiders to a flank charge by the Temptress.

With the rest of his second turn Lliam charged one unit of Fallen with Gargoyles and parked the second in front of the other Fallen. He also charged the Frostfang Cavalry with Tortured Souls while putting the other unit in front of my Korgan. 

To me this was the key moment in the battle. In my Turn 2 I was able to remove both Gargoyle units and both Tortured Souls. This then heavily swung the mobility advantage to the Varangur. It also equalised the US of the two armies at 17 each.

My central Lord charged the Chroneas inflicting some damage on it.

The following picture shows the centre at the end of Varangur Turn 2. Lord in combat with the Chroneas, Raiders and Fallen facing off against the Succubi Regiments. At the top you can see the Lower Abyssals have moved to shore up the FoTA right.

Varangur are feeling happy with the current battle state.

Here is another view of the centre from another angle. Charges from the Succubi are on - one into the Horse Raiders and the other into the Fallen. The Chroneas is, however, in real danger with the Lord and Fallen arrayed against him. He will choose to charge the Fallen, to minimise the number of attacks he would wear next turn.

Image taken part way through the FotA Movement

The Succubi easily remove the Horse Raiders but the other unit fails to break the Fallen. Similarly, the other Fallen hold up the Chroneas.

The Well of Souls and Abyssal Horsemen are facing the Varangur mounted. At this point the Well of Souls determines that he will have more luck in the centre and flies past the Lower Abyssals.

The Abyssal Horsemen charge the Lord but he weathers their attacks.

In the Varangur turn, they are surrounded by the two mounted units who in conjunction with the Lord, remove them.

The Victorious Varangar Mounted are now free to move on the centre

The Lower Abyssals come in and as a result of a complicated, partially blocked charge the Frostfang must align to them. They do sufficient damage which in conjunction with four wounds done earlier is enough to destroy the Frostfangs.

Back in the centre, the Fallen have removed one unit of Succubi and the Chroneas has also been destroyed. However, the arriving Well of Souls now has the opportunity to charge the rear of the right hand Fallen....which he does.....with expected outcome. 

Varangur mounted cleans out the Lower Abyssal Horde while the Snow Foxes disappear into the trees as they move to capture their sector.

Here is the completed charge by the Well of Souls demonstrating the value of the Fly special rule yet again. The damage from the Well in conjunction with Succubi removes the Fallen.

The Well of Souls then takes out the second unit of Fallen while the Succubi and Temptress attack the Lord. He manages to hold on a "Double 1"

At this stage, the result is largely decided. Varangar still have US7 on table to the FotA US3. The Frostfang Lord charges the Well which also wears the Korgan into the flank, popping it.

Here is the final melee showing the protagonists. With the Well gone, the Succubi are unable to stop the Varangar holding 4 sectors including one worth 2 points.

As noted above, I believe the Varangur advantage was sealed early  when they removed four flying units in Turn 2. This built on what I felt was a deployment advantage. Splitting my army as I did was certainly more advantageous than my original idea of two battlegroups.

Both Lliam and I learned a lot and I look forward to a rematch.


  1. Things I think I need to improve on:
    1. Deployment - my deployment didn't allow me to take advantage of key synergies, for instance I cast banechant zero times.
    2. Use of chaff - I think I would've been okay losing all my chaff on your turn two if I'd been able to set up the right multi charges for turn three. That I both lost my mobile chaff and failed to get multi charges was probably the point of no return.
    3. List - the list relies quite heavily on wound management. This possibly makes it highly inefficient against armies that instakill anything. I rolled no regen the whole game and neither the well of souls nor the chroneas did any meaningful wound recovery work. This means I had whatever points I was paying for wound recovery mechanisms totally wasted. It's possible that I can deal with this through better use of chaff and better deployment, but it's also possible that the list is weak against alphastrike armies.

    More games required....

    1. Think Point 2 was the key...

      Too early to call Point 3 without playing the game a few times and cycling through different strategies