Game 4 – Chaos Warrior’s – Hamish Gordon
Day two started with me facing another Chaos Warriors army. The draw had gone up the previous day so we all had the night to prepare for the second days first match. The scenario being watchtower, one of my armies favorites.
Hamish’s force consisted of two large units of Chaos Knights. These will be enemy no.1. If these things got into my lines it would ruin my party. They where backed up by a block of Khorne Warriors, a block of Tzeentch Warriors, A Sorcerer Lord on Disc, BSB, Hellcanon, and Festus. Interesting. Although the list lacked the usual War Altars, it did have an interesting combo with Festus passing on his 5+ regeneration roll. The Disc lord was taking Tzeentch lore, and Hamish rolled Gateway… A spell that I did not want to see.
Hamish won the roll off and occupied the watchtower with his Khorne Warriors, something I was hoping for. I could easily shoot these guys out within a few turns and take the tower in the later stages of the game. The rest of Hamish’s force was split up on either flank of the tower, with both knight units on my left, and his Tzeentch block to my right. The Hellcanon went centre with the Lord, presumably trying to hide from my catapults.
I deployed my forces to hard counter the tower, as it was worth 600vp for this game. Khalidas archers went centre with catapults and caskets to the rear. My knights held my right flank and the horse archers went left to get in the way of the Chaos Knights, and knowing I automatically had first turn, I deployed one unit 12” away from both of them.
A plan? Shootem of course! I would start with Khalida shooting the tower, caskets and Ushabti target the Knights, catapults hit the Helcannon or tower, and Knights hold the right threatening the Tzeentch warriors flank if they advanced into the tower. The horse archers would simply get in the way as they should. I decided on some priomary targets and secondary targets for all units to maximize the potential impact. I liked the plan, as long as I could contain and deal with the Chao Knights.
Turn one starts well. I predominantly hold back as I only need to make centre table which I can do in the later stages of the game. My Necroknights angle it up and I show Hamish my hand early with them as I want him to consider the threat to his flank. Magic. Well. I roll up a good number of dice and 2 dice an irresistible light of death, which targets his knights, killing 4. It then bounces to the other unit and takes three of them. Hamish shuts down the next casket, but not before smiting goes off on the Ushabti. Khalidas archers remove a bunch of Chaos Warriors from the tower. The Ushabti add their weight to the turkey shoot, targeting his Lord on Disc. They chip off two wounds and the catapults manage 3 wounds on the Hellcannon. One is not in LOS so he drops a rock on the Disc Lord. I get a direct hit but Hamish saves the wound with his 3+ ward. Good Start!. Hamish charges into his first turn and hits the horse archers who where so conveniently angled infront of his Knights. There killed and he overruns out to the far right thanks to my redirect. His tower lads cant do squat this turn thanks to the scenario, but the Tzeentch boys shuffle over towards the tower. His Disc Lord goes and hides behind the tower, but remains 24” from my Necroknights. Hmm, wonder what he is planning… Yup. Gateway on the Necroknights. But I am having none of this, and throw all my dice at it and dispel it easily. His Helcannon then manages to put 2 wounds on one of my catapults.
After a great turn one start I feel I am in a good position. I stick to my plan and move another horse archer unit into assume a redirect position. I get the angle happening on my Knights a little by moving them half an inch backwards, just to force Hamish to expose his Disc Lord. I move the Ushabti up towards the tower as I plan on them occupying it after Hamish looses it. Yes I am that confident at this point. A 6 dice vs 2 magic phase sees me get another casket off on the Knights, reducing one unit down to one model, then bouncing to the other and leaving three in it. The other casket targets the tower, whilst Hamish try’s shutting down smiting without success. In my shooting phase Khalida targets the tower this turn with smiting in effect, and with the help of a catapult, leaves 1 warrior behind. The Ushabti target the 3 Knights and kill two, leaving Hamish with 2 units of 1 knight. The other catapult misfires and cant shoot this turn. Hamish now bails from the tower, presumable trying to save VP’s. I believe he will try and take the tower later in the game with his Tzeentch warriors. He also pulls back his now one man Knight units to attempt to get them out of range of the caskets. His lord dosnt take the bait but gets himself well out of LOS. In his magic phase he targets my other catapult with a nurgly spell (I forget which one) and targets my full health catapult. It’s a stonethower type shot and manages to clip and put two wounds on the other catapult. His Hellcannon misses however.
As turn three rolls around I take the tower with the Ushabti. This I believe was a mistake, as I have a tendency to enter the tower too early, however there was so many tempting targets and I wanted to deny the Tzeentch Warriors the opportunity. Khalidas band moved up into range of the Tzeentch duders, as my Knights failed their charge into his flank. In my magic phase I try my hand at caskets again. Hamish shuts down the first but the second goes off. Ive targeted the knights again but this time he makes his Ld test. I get a smiting off on the Ushabti which then turn Hamishes Disc Lord into a pin cushion. Heh. These guys are great! Khalida makes a small mark on the Tzeentch warriors but both catapults miss their mark this time. Hamish now charges the building with Festus and his Tzeentch Warriors. His knights run away some more and the Hellcannon stays put. In his magic phase he double6’s on two dice the stone thrower spell again but it scatters wide. The miscast has no I’ll effect on him however as regeneration saves the wound. His Helcannon has better luck and kills a catapult. The Tzeentch Warriors now make their mark, accounting for a couple of Ushabti, with me loosing a further one from Combat res.
Turn 4 starts with the realization that I may have committed to the tower to early, as is usual for me. I figure they can hold for one more turn then I will swap them out for Khalidas Archers. I will also position the Knights in a batter place to regain the flank as a backup plan to pin the Tzeentch Knights and deny him the watchtower. My horse archers are off chasing the Chaos Knights and the last Khorne warrior who had run and hid behind the Helcannon. The Ushabti Kill one of the Chaos Knight units off and Khalidas archers take there toll on the Tzeentch warriors. Hamish then charges into the tower again and rolls very well. He takes 3 Ushabti out with the last two crumbling after they fluff most of their attacks. Hmm. Not good. Hamish has just managed a 1000 vp swing in his favour and likely tying up the game at this point.
So turn 5 sees me reassessing the situation. I was not expecting the Tzeentch Warriors to gain the tower on turn 5. My Necroknights where now of no use in this fight so then plowed on ahead to tackle the Helcannon, as if I couldn’t remove the Warriors out of the tower, I would need all that I can get. I used a casket to pick off the last Chaos Knight and try for smiting, which is dispelled. The other casket makes itself felt on the watchtower. My last catapult targets the tower causing a few casualties, and thanks to flaming, negates his regeneration. Khalida then maks a big hole in the warriors and reduces the number down. Hamish still holds the tower and its going to be down to the wire on turn six. Theres not a lot Hamish can do in his turn, with the helcannon missing the Necroknights and magic being of no I’ll effect.
Last turn! By my figures the game is sitting on a narrow win for me based on vp’s as the tower is worth 600 in this scenario. However, I know I need a big win to keep me in contention at the top of the table, and keep any chance of a podium finish. With this in mind I did not believe a charge by the Necroknights would wipe out the Warriors in the tower. I had to rely on magic and shooting, meaning I could not capture the tower for my own. Instead the Knights charged the Hellcannon. I rolled up a respectable number of dice and threw everything I had at the tower. Khalidas staff, 2 caskets and a smiting all got through making a serious dent into them. Shooting had me use the horse archers to clean up the last Khorne Warrior netting me much needed vp’s. I shot the catapult first netting me some kills, and more importantly no regeneration. The 10 man unit was next and managed to snag a warrior, reducing the number to less than 5 rank’n file. Khalida was up next, and thanks to smiting, easily accounted for about 24 wounds, enough to wipe out the unit. The game then ended when the Necroknights finished off the Helcannon in combat with a plethora of poison hits. Hamish finished the game tabled but nobody held the watchtower.
17-3 to Khalidas Archers!
This game really showed how well Khalida could perform in the right situation. It is a stark contrast to the game against Basils VC where she accomplished nothing. Skittle of the match defiantly goes to the Casket of Souls! They accounted for both Knight units (with a little help from the Ushabti) and caused a ton of damage to units occupying the watchtower. Hamish’s Ld 8 did not help him in this respect. The Ushabti once again bagged themselves another Chaos Disc Sorcerer, proving their worth and gaining them a honorable mention. I did make the mistake again committing to early to the watchtower. This cost me a 20-0 win and lost me the Ushabti. I was to worried about Festus and his unit gaining a foothold into the tower and completely forgot that my catapults (I only had one left at this point) where flaming and would essentially ignore him. Still I gained another Disc Sorcerer scalp so it wasn’t a total loss. Hamish’s list I think was the stronger of the two vs mine based on the greater speed and higher armour overall. The lack of War Alters didn’t seam to be missed at all with his force. The win was enough to put me into 2nd overall and a face off with current board leader Sam Whitt! He had just narrowly beaten Tom Dunn’s Daemons this round in a very tooth and nail fight. It was boiling down to being a fight between us three for the top step.
Game 5 – Orc’s and Goblin’s – Sam Whitt
Sam had forgotten something this tournament. He had forgotten his Chaos Dwarfs! I was so looking forward to Khalida turning his K’daai into the biggest pincushion in the old world! Alas, Sam had changed it up and bought along his other love, (Savage) Orc’s and (Night) Goblin’s, complete with Big’Un Bus and more chaff than most could handle. Some people really underestimate how well an OnG list can perform with the right hands at the helm. I know this first hand as I campaigned last year with a similar list to what Sam had made and got a 1st, 3rd and 5th with them at tournaments.
Worst case scenario his Savage Orc Big un’s make contact with Khalida. Best case I get 3 turns of roasting them with poisoned archers.
Sam had 2 Wolf chariots, a Boar chariot, a lone troll and another mob of 8, 2 manglers, a pump wagon, 2 rock lobbers, 2 doom divers, 3 bolt throwers, a large mob o Night Goblins and or course his Savage Orc Bus, or SOB. He complimented this all with an Orc Warboss, Savage Orc Shaman (L4), Night goblin shaman and Black Orc BSB. Damn that’s a lot.
Sam won the roll off for sides and chose the one with the big building half in the deployment zone. There goes that idea. I liked the thought of Khalidas archers holing up in there if things got rough. It was big enough that I probably could have got 25-30 shots per turn. After deployment the table looked favourable. His SOB was behind the building in the centre right, with trolls on the right. He had most of his chaff on the left and opposite most of my stuff. I held the centre with my Necroknights, and deployed Khalida and her archers, the Ushabti and the 10 man archer unit on my left. Both of us deployed artillery to the rear with Sam taking care to set up his Doom Divers out of range of my Catapults. My horse archers had deployed normally to try and get a more favourable deployment. I win roll off for first turn and we get underway.
My first turn started with little in range of Khalida and her archers. I shuffled the Necroknights more towards my right envisaging Sam sweeping through the middle of the board with his trolls and SOB. This way I would be able to threaten his flank meaning he would need to deal with the threat, hopefully giving my archers more time to work their magic. I ran 2 of my horse archers up my right to threaten the doom divers for a turn 2 charge. I used a casket to try zap a doom diver, and the other to chain up his chaff which is mostly out of generals Ld range but both got shut down. Smiting went off on the Ushabti, which in turn shot a mangler off the table. Sam informs me that his manglers have not made it to the enemy all weekend. I was determined not to be the first. I also shoot up a snotling pump wagon and land a direct hit on a rock lobber killing it and ending my turn. Sam moves his SOB into the building, and pushes all his chaff forward. This is a target rich environment! The trolls bumble forward to the right flank of the building along with his boar chariot. Sam rolls up a few dice and in great Orcy fasion, declares a BIG Foot of Gork! With only 2 dispel dice I use my scroll early to stop it. Sams doom divers and a bolt thrower account for one of the horse archer units, whilst his rock lobber misses.
Turn two sees me with plenty of targets. My only real moves are to charge a bolt thrower with my remaining horse archer unit on my right, and another bolt thrower on my left with the other unit. The Knights shuffle over more close to the table edge. Magic rolls low and I only get off Khalidas staff, zapping the other mangler. Khalidas unit takes care of a lone troll and the Ushabti make little impact this turn. I do land another direct hit on the other Rock lobber. That’s 2 for 2! The horse archers take care of their bolt throwers and line up a doom diver on my right, and overrun into a wolf chariot on my left. Sam charges his night goblins forward into my 10 man unit of archers that I had pushed to far forward. They get wiped out in combat. Sam then drops his SOB out of the building bringing it into range of Khalidas archers. I figure I can get 3 turns of shooting into it then finish it off with the knights all going to plan. Magic rolls low again. Sam throws all his dice at Hand of Gork and gets enough, requiring me to roll an 11 on 3 dice. So I roll a 9… and the SOB moves across the board 13” infront of khalidas archers. Ok so maybe one turn of shooting… Sam has some fun with the shooting phase using his DD’s take care of the other horse archer unit. The trolls move up supported by the Orc chariot.
Oh crap. I am in trouble. I start turn three with that heavy sinking feeling. I need to pull one out of the bag and quick. I play around with reforming and moving back but in the end it would just be delaying the inevitable and denying me a chance to shoot. I reform into a wider formation and move 2” back forcing an 11” roll for the SOB. My Ushabti cut across and cover my right flank from the night goblins, and my Hierophant bails out the left side. I toy with the idea of charging the rear of the SOB with my last horse archer unit, but Sam points that since I can’t flee he won’t need to pursue. I get 12 dice in the magic phase vs 6. I cast light of death on one of the Doom Divers to try bait out some dice. I get two, so I cast the other and get some more, but this light of death gets through and I take out one of the Doom Divers. I then get off smiting on the archers but Sam slams it with a scroll. Desiccation also gets shut down which was targeted at the SOB. In my shooting phase I manage to get both catapults on target, both scattering slightly but remaining true. Khalida opens up and all of a sudden Sam is left with 15 Savage Orcs + characters. I have to hope for a failed charge and another round of shooting will see me right. Its now Sams turn and he declares his charges, and the dawn of realisation washes over me as I see the huge mistake I made… Khalidas archers are indeed 15” away from his SOB, however he only needs an 8 to make contact with the Ushabti, and the ensuing overrun will hit my archers. Crap. He rolls the 8 required and brings in the Night Goblins for some netting goodness. The trolls are moved up as is the Boar chariot. Sam works with a few dice and gets Hand of Gork off to move the trolls over. The Ushabti are crushed in combat and crumble allowing the overrun from the SOB into Khalida. The Night Goblins hold and reform.
Turn 4 comes about with a tense situation. The archers could still hold out for the rest of the game. I look at ways to see how I could flank the SOB with the Necroknights, but Sam has placed the Night Goblins well enough to prevent this. I instead charge them. There is little other movement to be made so we move onto magic. I roll a respectable number of dice and start casting with light of death on the other Doom Diver. Sam lets it through so I cast smiting on the archers again with Sam also letting this through. He dispels desiccation on his SOB though. I get the 5+ ward happening to even up the field. My catapults launch into shooting taking out the boar chariot. The other one misfires and destroys itself. We move onto combat with Khalida going first. The combat is slightly skewed with Sam only having 8 models in contact thanks to the overrun. I use my champion to challenge which Sam accepts with his. We both fail to kill each other with me not wounding, and me saving the only wound inflicted on him. Khalida kills 3 or 4 Savage Orcs, and in return Sams characters make short work of several skeletons. The Savage Orcs and Skittles then strike simultaneously with my 5+ ward really coming into itself. I end up inflicting 8 or 9 wounds which Sam only manages to save 2, whilst I saved over half with some tinny rolling much to Sams disappointment. I end up winning the combat by a few but thanks to the crown Sam is stubborn on 9’s. I reform to a deeper formation and so that all of Sams orcs are in combat. Oh yeah, the Necroknights steamroll the Night goblins but they hold. So Sams turn 4 starts with little fanfare, as he only has trolls free to move, everything else is either dead or in combat. We move onto magic where Sam gets through itchy nuisance on my skittles reducing me to I1. My Necroknights destroy the Night Goblins which flee. I elect to pursue which will lead me into combat with the trolls. I need the VP and risk the combat to catch the Goblins, which I do. We move on to the main combat where Khalida makes herself known again and smacks over a bunch more Savage Orcs. Having the frenzy beaten out helps a lot, with the volume of attacks greatly down as is the strength. His characters make up for what the unit was lacking including the champion besting mine in the dual, but I reply with over 40 attacks! Sam is left with a wound on both his BSB and L4 Shaman, and only 2 or 3 Savage Orcs remaining.
Turn 5 would be our last, as time was running out. We both have no movement at all as we where locked in combat, so magic first up. Another ok phase dice wise. This time however Sam is on the money with his dispels. He shuts down everything bar smiting on my archers. We roll around combat in which Khalida finishes off the last few Savage Orcs. Once again Sam bashes a bunch of skittles into powder but cant with the combat. The trolls have more success vomiting on my Knights. He gets 4 wounds and I loose the combat taking another wound. Not so bad, but I would have preferred some magic buffs. In the last turn there is not much to do. Sam has 6 trolls and his 3 Orc characters left, two of which are wounded. His magic phase was low and was easily shut down, as Sam had only one spell that he could cast. I move Khalida over to face off his Savage Orc Shaman which had been wounded. With lightning speed Khalida dispatches her rival with little effort. The rest of the skittles have little effect on Sams characters, but once again Sam makes his stubborn check. The trolls have more success killing another Knight, and forcing enough combat result to crumble another. The game ends with a victory in my favour.
15-5 to Tomb Kings
Now this was a hard fought battle. I really thought Sam had me on Turn three. He managed to shut down the right spells at the right time and push through the ones he needed. Baiting out my scroll first turn was a good move. I made several mistakes in this game. The first was using my horse archers offensively to attack Sams artillery. I did this thinking that Khalidas archers would be able to deal with Sams SOB over the 3 turns he would need to cover the gap. I didn’t count on Sam getting a Hand of Gork off! Lesson learnt, stick to the plan. The horse archers primary role is to get in the way of threats to Khalida, and I needed to stick to that. My next big mistake was moving the Ushabti forward to block the Night Goblins. I didn’t need to do this and it very nearly cost me the game. In fact I will go as far as saying this move cost me an 18+ victory. I know at the time I was ensuring covering Khalida from the night gobos, but did not see the obvious until it was too late. Skelly of the match is a hard one. The catapults did great this match, accounting for much artillery and a chariot. The caskets had a good hand in drawing out dispel dice which allowed me to get though the right spells, and Khalida pretty much saved the day by killing a bunch of Savage Orcs and Sams Shaman. So it goes to Khalida, even though I only got one real round of shooting off. This game marked the first time I had used the archers in combat, and it turn out ok. But only just
With the 15-5 result that put me on the top step, shared with Tom Dunn and His Daemons. We both finished with 74 battle points, 25/25 for sports and full marks for painting. Tom had a great final game finishing with a 20-0 win to share top honors. Sam finshed 2nd, after holding the limelight for most of the weekend, and almost putting to bed the day to jitters he suffers.
Thanks to Wellington Warlords for hosting the event and Peter Dunn for Umpiring. Good weekend by all and even the news channels turned up. (Like the good little wargamers we are, we all went and hid from the cameras whilst volunteering an unsuspecting fellow gamer for an interview!)