Rather than have all my battles in one thread (as I had been doing), I thought i'd split them into one thread per army, that way I can write lists and thoughts and show the army evolution in one place. Apologies for those who have read the initial few posts before
Game 18 - Beastmen vs Greg F's Vampire Counts - Battle Report - Aug 2021
Game 17 - Beastmen vs Greg E's Empire - Battle Report - October 2020
Game 16 - Beastmen vs Luke's Warriors of Chaos - Battle Report - Nov 2019
Game 15 - Beastmen vs Lee's Bretonnians - Battle Report (Riotville 2019)
Game 14 - Beastmen vs Sedge's Dwarves - Battle Report (Riotville 2019)
Game 13 - Beastmen vs Grandmasterwang's Wood Elves - Battle Report
Game 12 - Beastmen vs Luke's Dark Elves - Battle Report (2017 SELWG WHFB Comp - 3rd place play off)
Game 11 - Beastmen vs Neil's Lizardmen - Battle Report (2017 SELWG WHFB Comp - Semi Final)
Game 10 - Beastmen vs Paul's Skaven - Battle Report (2017 SELWG WHFB Comp - Quarter Final)
Game 9 - Beastmen vs Alistair's Orcs and Goblins - Battle Report (2017 SELWG WHFB Comp)
Game 8 - Beastmen vs Martin's Dwarves - Battle Report (2017 SELWG WHFB Comp)
Game 7 - Beastmen vs Luke's Dark Elves - Battle Report (2017 SELWG WHFB Comp)
For games 1-4 I used the following list. My thoughts on it are below the list.
I 'ummed and ahhed' for ages on which army to take. The misinformation posts, although obviously a bit tongue in cheek, were written as I genuinely couldn't decide what to go with. Writing down a bit on each army was meant to help me decide but probably made the task more difficult! If I could have entered twice into the second stage, using different armies, I would have done.
It probably will come as no surprise though, that in the end I went with the Beastmen, if only because they are what i've been working on recently and are the latest toys.
This choice of army will automatically put me at a disadvantage. I lose 10 bonus points before I even start by not keeping my original list or not using a Dwarf army. Add to that, it is not fully painted so I will lose a further 2 points per game until that is done (approx 50 Gor, 10 Harpies, 1 Razorgor and the 2 Shamans to go). So already i've potentially lost 16 points, the equivalent of a game win!
The main disadvantage however is the fact that i've never used Beastmen before which does give a small handicap before we even start. Sometimes my genius knows no limits! I do have 1 practice game lined up against a new club member on 4 Nov, so hopefully that will be enough to show me the mistakes i've made in my list selection when it is too late to do anything about it.
With that said, i've had to rely on internet trawling, forum posts, battle reports, combined with my own thoughts and what I actually own, to put together my army. My reasons for taking what I did are given after the list.
The Herd of Khazbar the Magnificent
Khazbar the Magnificent - Great Bray Shaman - General
(AHW + Jagged dagger + Talisman of Preservation + Level 4 - Lore of Shadow) - 294pts
(AHW + Chalice of Dark Rain + Level 2 - Lore of Beasts) - 152pts
(38 Gor + FC + AHW) - 329pts
(19 Gor + FC + AHW) - 177pts
1 Tuskgor Chariot - 80pts
1 Tuskgor Chariot - 80pts
(24 Bestigor + FC + HA + GW + Standard of Discipline) - 333pts
1 Razorgor Herd - 55pts
1 Razorgor Herd - 55pts
5 Harpies - Scout - 70pts
5 Harpies - 55pts
1 Ghorgon - 275pts
Grand Total - 2499pts
List Build Reasoning
I was very close to using the 2nd list that I posted here: Sowing Misinformation – part 3. I really wanted to use minotaurs but in order to include the additional items such the chalice on the Shaman and additional chaff, I had to cut something from the list and they drew the short straw (the choice was between them, the Bestigor or the Ghorgon). A perhaps controversial choice but i'll cover reasons below.
So why take what I did?
The first decision was who to take as the general. Lvl 4 GBS, Beastlord or Doombull?
Each had pro's and cons. The Beastlord's advantage was due to the higher leadership. However I had already made the decision to take a lvl 4 shaman (this was a no brainer having been magic starved as a dwarf in the first group!). Realistically this meant only having enough points for one more lord and having made the decision to cut the Minotaur unit and due to my love of them (they have always been my favorite Chaos unit), it meant that I had to include the Doombull so they were represented.
With no unit to hide in I would however, have to rethink his load out and having seen the idea of a flying bull online I stole and adapted the idea, of course ignoring the conventional agreed load out (no charmed shield for me, instead a veritable mass of attacks with a 1+ save which would probably result in further attacks). He would be acting as a super chaff and would likely be able to stall entire units of low str models.
With the Doombull roaming free, this meant the GBS was the only choice as general. The logical place to put him would be in the Bestigor unit to take advantage of the standard of discipline so that other units would test on an LD of 9. A 4++ talisman would help to give him a bit of survivability, either in combat or from miscasts. The AHW and jagged dagger were to give him the chance to gain additional power dice for each kill he made (at a very low cost). I chose Shadow over Beasts on him as I like more of the spells and i'm a relative magic novice and it seemed a more straight forward lore. Beasts has some great spells but seems more reliant on being able to get those specific ones.
This also meant that I could also take a lvl 2 Shaman on Beasts who would then benefit from the +1 to cast lore attribute, effectively making him a lvl 3 for free (at least for casting at the beastmen). Everyone loves the signature (Wyssans) and any other spell would be an added bonus. He was given the Chalice over a dispel scroll. I'm still not entirely sure this was wise but my army relies on getting into combat (and in one piece) and with taking a Ghorgon, I needed something else to help mitigate warmachines (especially cannons and stone throwers).
The final choice was a Wargor BSB. For a low leadership army, that relies on passing LD tests in order to reroll 'to hit' in each round of combat, the BSB is mandatory. Giving him the Beast Banner (+1 Strength to the holder and their unit) is one of the most obvious Beastmen BSB builds but is very effective when put in a Gor unit (The banner together with HA + sh + Gnarled hide combine to make the infamous 206 build. As i'm using the hide elsewhere, his defense will have to suffer somewhat).
Honestly there was no real underlying strategy behind the core choices. I own 2 chariots, 60 Gor and 10 ungor raiders. That pretty much defined my choices. Of these, the 2 chariots were auto includes as I have always loved Chariots since picking up Grom and some other goblin wolf chariots back in 4th ed. Likewise a horde of Gor with AHW seems to be generally accepted as the best core unit and honestly who doesn't like a horde! 40 odd attacks with a slim chance of boosting them to 50 at str 3 (or 4 if the Beast Banner is in the unit) is nothing to be sniffed at. A smaller unit of Gor allows me to have the option of ambushing it (should I want) or using it as a Shaman bunker. It is generally just more versatile than the horde.
I did think about dropping a few Gor from the smaller unit in order to include some raiders but I would have wanted 2 units in order to make use of ambushing and the cutting of troops to allow this would have hamstrung the 2nd Gor unit too much.
I read somewhere that Beastmen are kings of the chaff. I'm not sure of the truth of that but they do have some good options. 2 units of harpies give me some much needed speed. 10 initiative 5 attacks for each unit, should be enough to beat other chaff. Giving one of them scout, together with their high move gives a very good chance of getting them into any warmachines too. The chaff are rounded out with 2 individual Razorgors. They are affectionately called pork rockets by many Beastmen players. 55pts for 4 str 6 (on the charge) attacks is a bargain. These can be used on a flank, to assist existing combats or even as hard cover for other units. If nothing else perhaps I will have learnt how to use chaff by the end of the comp! (I will also give recognition to SELWG member Alex Mountain who is downright dirty highly effective in using his chaff and has definitely inspired me to step up my game with them. If I can get half as good with them as he is I will rate that an overwhelming success).
Bestigors are a solid dependable unit. Good leadership (for Beastmen), armour(!), great weapons, the ability to take a magic standard and being able to add in Beastmen characters meant that with the greater versatility, I had to favor them over the Minotaurs, especially with the high cost of each Minotaur.
And now we come to the elephant (Ghorgon?) in the room. It is almost universally agreed that the Ghorgon is overpriced by at least 50 points and with the ability of any strength attack to wound on a 6, poison avoiding toughness and no save, it just isn't durable enough to include in a list. So why the hell did I take one?
I'll be honest, I almost didn't. For the same price I could have almost 5 Minotaurs with additional hand weapons that would pump out 19 str 5 attacks (if the doombull was in the unit giving frenzy) and 2 str 5 impacts (on the charge) and 2 str 5 stomps (+ whatever the Doombull added). That is a lot of attacks and putting it down here now I am almost trying to work out what on earth I was thinking. The Minotaurs do have some issues though. They only have light armour (may as well not have any - so on a par with the Ghorgon there) and more importantly only toughness 4. That makes it relatively easy to cause wounds on them, especially with the type of matchups opponents would favour. The 295 cost for 5 Minotaurs also doesn't include a standard/musician, which, with a LD of 7 they really need. They also need to be near the general/BSB to ensure they aren't frenzy baited (or break easily).
So we then come to the Ghorgon. I could talk about the advantages of it over the Minotaurs (and I will) but the long and short of it is I have a model I really love and wanted to use it. That's it.
Now having said that, it does have some advantages over the Minotaurs. First off it is LD 10 and Stubborn. That means it can operate independently on the flanks, something that very few other Beastmen units can. It is unlikely to fail a frenzy test and in combat it will hardly ever break. WS 4, Str + T + W's of 6 means most units will need a 4 to hit and 6 to wound. Even cannons have only a 1 in 6 chance of killing it in one go and with the Chalice in the list, they will need a 4+ to even fire on one turn which might give it a chance to get into combat. The other way of looking at it, is that it is a large monster (something i've also not used having been playing Dwarves, so another point in its favour) and such an imposing model, he will likely be a magnet for fire and anything aiming at him will not be aiming at other units that are potentially more integral to the army synergies (I even managed to write that with out cracking a laugh as most of the list was picked based on what I own or really wanted to use...). So for better or for worse, he has been included.
With my first run of games now finished, I thought I pop some thoughts down about my Beastmen and how they performed, what worked well and what didn't. It may incorporate a bit of a mini army review. (Marks have been given based on my opinion of the unit and influenced by how effectively I can use it!).
WHFB Stage 2 outcome
I'll start with my results and take it from there.
Game 1 - loss - 7pts
Game 2 - win - 17pts
Game 3 - loss - 15pts
Total - 43pts (out of a possible 75). So just over 50%. Not great and I ended up last in the group (although this was only because I dropped points by switching armies between the 1st and 2nd group stages - in terms of battle points I came 3rd of 4th).
The Herd Of Khazbar
Khazbar - Level 4 Great Bray Shaman (Shadow). 4/5
Overall he worked really well. The lore complemented the army and is fairly easy to use. The only issue is, i set the army up for him to go in the bestigor, so he could take advantage of the standard of discipline. This meant he was often up against foes with high toughness/multi wound models (as that was the units prime target) which wasted his jagged dagger item. Making him a lvl 4 beasts and keeping the same loadout but with fencers blades so he was a more oriented combat character, would probably make more sense. When placed in a different unit, the one point drop in leadership was really noticeable. Wazzock lvl 2 Shaman (Beasts). 4/5
Was surprisingly effective, he has the same attack stats as a Gor champion so with an AHW, acted as a combat multiplier and wyssans is just such good value. Going forward I would definitely drop the chalice of dark rain and put in a dispel scroll, as the former is too situational (though in fairness I didn't compete against any particular shooty army builds). Depending on how I take the level 4 going forward, I'll either swop Wazzock to a lvl 1 shadow or perhaps even run a second lvl 1 also with beasts for a second wyssans.
Zhuroc BSB (Beast banner). 5/5
Hardly ever made combat but he was never meant to. His sole task was to provide a buff and reroll. The banner really made a difference to the horde with the +1 Str bonus and I was surprised he wasn't targeted more, especially as he only had a 4+ basic save.
Bloodhorn - Doombull 4/5
I get the impression my opponents were far more experienced in facing doombulls than I am in playing them. Either that or he has a certain fear factor as a lot of effort went into getting rid of him. In terms of his load out, I think I made the right choice, especially as he was a lone character. The magic weapon meant I could use him to clear out ethereal, something the rest of my army would struggle with.
The problem was in my selection of targets. He should have just ploughed into standard rank and file, where his high save and basic stats would rip them apart. Saying that, he made a solid dent in Paul's great Unclean one and it was just bad luck he didn't muller a chunk of Dans empire. If I ran Minotaurs, I'd definitely be tempted to put another one in the unit as well as having him fly around. I only gave him a 4/5 mainly down to my use of him. Aesthetically he's a 5/5.
38 Gor horde 4/5
Complete beast, especially with the banner. Over 40 Str 4 attacks (if the BSB is in the unit) will tear through most things. Only one real way to play it, pick an opposing unit and get into combat as soon as possible using your chaff to eliminate his blockers, something I didn't always do and it normally cost me when I didn't. If we didn't have a competition 40 wound restriction, I'd likely boost this to 50 models as it takes a lot of punishment from all directions. What I didn't appreciate was how much opponents feared this unit in each game and adding another 10 models might just make them avoid it more so might actually be counter intuitive.
With the beast banner this unit is definitely a 5/5.
19 Gor herd 3/5
The unit was fine but you have to pick fights with care. It mainly got used as a bunker for the level 2 and wyssans helped it a lot. I would be tempted to either boost the size by at least 5 models if only to help survivability, as I do find that extra rank can make all the difference, especially in 8th. The other option would be to drop the unit completely and run a couple of 30pt ungor raiders. At that size/cost I wouldn't care about the random Beastmen ambush rule.
I like these a lot. Yes they get targeted by cannons quite a bit, need to be in BSB or generals LD bubble and their combat effectiveness is somewhat debatable (if only down to my single die rolls). However they are reasonably cheap, are there mainly to support other units in combat and can be used as chaff if needed.
I can see why this unit is a go to in most competitive lists. WS4, Str 6, primal fury and a 50pt magic standard allowance make them as good as we will get. LD 8 maybe average for most armies but it's gold standard for Beastmen. ASL does mean they should apply the maxim go big or go home. Having one of the only saves in the army generally means nothing when they are fighting the high str/toughness preferred foe. The unit of 24 I took worked well in most cases. It was the right size to be flexible and absorb some casualties, however in half my battles, the magical cascade from having the lvl4 embedded there, effectively took it out of the game before it reached combat! So the moral is: 24 is fine but go 40 if your shaman is in there! Harpies 3/5
I'll admit I struggled to use them effectively. A combination of unfavourable matchups or good deployment by my opponents didn't help (and I kept forgetting I had scout on one unit). I can see how in the right hands they can be used very well (perhaps that will be me with more practice) and Neil taught me a nice trick with them (or with his furies) using them in a 3*2 rank for character assassination.
Compared to the harpies I generally had much more luck with the porkchop express but only once I realised it actually has limited use in combat. Sure it has 4 attacks and a good str, which increases on the charge but I found it averaged out to one wound. I found the best way to use it was run it in front of a combat unit and stick it in the face of the nme unit, always remembering to angle it so if they charge you can counter into their flank (he may be mediocre in attack but he is surprisingly survivable) or if they don't he can stay there and block them or help with a combo charge. In theory, harpies could be used the same way but I found it easier to do with a single model and it is for this reason I've given it such a high rating.
I have 2 models I completely love and use as Ghorgons and it was purely for this reason I took it. I want to love the rules but after using it I'm struggling. The truth is I've not yet used it effectively and wonder if I ever will. When you deploy it you always worry that it will be one shotted. It just isn't survivable enough, especially when anything can wound on a 6+ (although ironically he survived 3 out of the 4 battles I used him in). There is also the points cost. 275. That's a lot. For just over that, I could bump up the size of the Bestigor unit (the standard option) or get 6 minotaurs with AHW. Yes they are also massively overpriced, especially if you compare them to trolls or Ogres and suffer from frenzy baiting with a much lower leadership but you get far more attacks and wounds. He also fills roughly the same role as the doombull in my list.
Post by grandmasterwang on Aug 13, 2017 19:20:10 GMT
Will go through all your battle reports thoroughly at some stage in the future. Loving your detailed breakdowns.
Regarding Ghorgons I will say that mine has never broken in combat in over 20 games using it. It's usually dead by the end of the game but Leadership 10 in a Beastmen army is something to be thankful for.
See if your opponents will let you play it with a 6+ regeneration save. In SOM Ghorgon costs 260 points so the reasoning is 15 points for the 6+ regeneration save. It's still not competitive really but the save can make all the difference. Love that you played it anyway because you loved the model.
You join us once again to follow the amazing adventures of Captain Khazbar and the crew of the... wait no that's a different genre.
After spending a week at the inlaws, we had a two day break before they then arrived at ours for a week, together with one of their (and my wife's) Italian friends and her two children. Where am I going with this? Well my amazing wife realised I'd had a shit week at work and recognising that I'd had no space in the evenings to unwind, told me to go to the club. So I managed to get an unexpected game in on Friday. Happy days!
As an extra bonus, I finally managed to get a game in vs Luke C and his dark elves. I'd seen Luke play a number of times but for some reason we'd never managed to get a game in.
Herd of Khazbar the Magnificent
Bashor the Bloody - Beastlord (General), ogre blade, armour of destiny, shield
Khazbar the Magnificent - Great Bray Shaman, level 4 - Lore of Beasts, Talisman of Protection, Brass Cleaver, jagged dagger
Zurrock the Mighty - Wargor (bsb), HA, shield, Beast Banner
Wazzock the Lame - Bray Shaman, level 1 - Lore of Shadow, dispel scroll
I didn't get a copy of Luke's list but it was something like:
General - Dreadlord, LIght Armour, Shield, scaly cloak, coldone, black dragon egg, ogre blade
Level 4 Sorceress - power scroll, dark steed, possibly other stuff - Lore of Life
Level 1 Sorceress - Dispel scroll, Lore of beasts.
Death Hag - bsb, cauldron of blood, obsidian blade, the +D3 attack upgrade
5 Dark riders - Standard, musician, xbows
5 Dark riders - standard, musician, xbows
5 Dark riders - Standard, musician, xbows
29 Witch Elves - FC
5 Doomfire Warlocks
9 Coldone Knights
After a fair bit of testing at the club I had made some further amendments to the Wicked Woods scenario we were going to use in the competition and we played that to try the changes out. There were two main changes.
1) The wood acts in the same way as a normal forest except: All models that march, charge, flee, overrun or pursues through, into or out of the Wicked Woods most take a Dangerous Terrain test, the test fails on the result of a 1 or 2. Models with the Strider special rule do not ignore Dangerous Terrain tests from the Wicked Woods. Any Wounds caused by the Wicked Woods Dangerous Terrain test count as magical. NOTE: You do not take the test for normal movement.
2) From Turn 2, if you control the wicked woods, you gain 1 scenario points per turn, awarded at the end of each players turn. (This means a player could get a maximum of 10 points in a game, 5 points for controlling it at the end of each of your turns (from turn 2-6) and 5 points for controlling it at the end of each of your opponents turns). The player that has the most scenario points at the end of the game wins. In the event of a tie, the player with the most victory points as per the BRB wins.
Terrain and Pre-match rolls
We rolled map pack 4 which meant a river, 2 normal hills, 2 scree slopes and a forest.
After placing the terrain (including the additional wood from the scenario, it looked like this.
It terms of spell selection:
Khazbar ended up with: Savage Beast, Curse, Wyssans and Amber Spear.
Wazzock took Miasma
The DE Supreme Sorceress got: Throne, Flesh, Earthblood and awakening.
The Beast Sorceress rolled Curse as well.
Deployment is as per battleline so alternate. I won the roll and so Luke placed the first unit and finished first. Although Luke had a number of units of chaff, my list far outstripped his of throwaway units and so I was able to place my big units after he had laid the Witches, Executioners and Cold One Knights. This allowed me to put the Besitigor opposite the Cold Ones, a match up he would not like. The Gor Horde went front and centre to capture the woods and the Doombull and accompanying harpies were placed on the far side of the river to perform a flanking manoeuvre, as the river would not impact their movement as they could all fly.
Due the chatting and laughs, I was having with Luke, as he regaled me with comic tournament stories, I allowed myself to get distracted and I did make the one blunder that as a Beastmen player you should never do, that of not having most of the army deployed within the bsb and generals range. Thankfully I wasn't punished for that!
With a blatant disregard for their lives, the witch elves started on top of a scree slope ensuring a dangerous terrain test as soon as they moved and after his 4 vanguards, it looked like this.
Turn 1 - DE
Luke started off by giving me a punishing lesson in how to use Dark Riders. One unit advanced at the double and positioned themselves in front of the Bestigors but slightly set back in the flank of my Razorgor. This meant I couldn't charge them and so effectively took them out of the game for my first turn.
The second unit also moved up to block the left unit Ungor Raiders. This in turn would limit the movement of the Gor horde in the following turn. Their cavalier attitude towards my units was helped by the boosted flesh to stone that was cast on them.
He then proceeded to show why the dark elves prefer combat by failing to kill a single thing with 30 repeater crossbow shots. This was backed up by both Curse and dwellers failing to cast.
The rest of his forces just generally advanced, with the warlocks and accompanying supreme Sorceress re-positioning from his left flank towards the right and the witches moving slightly into the wicked woods, where they promptly took 4 casualties (on top of the 2 they had already taken from the scree slope).
Turn 1 - Beastmen
Taking a leaf out or Luke's book my right most raider unit moved up to block the Cold One Knights. The supporting chariot moved up to counter should the raiders be killed.
The central chariot and Razorgor also moved to allow counter charges should the Bestigor be blocked again.
The Ungor raiders charged the T7 Dark riders in front of them, were quickly bested and legged it to safety through the nearby horde. Edit: not quite sure what I was thinking. Either that they might pin the riders in place or that they would at least be out of the way.
Across the river the Doombull and Harpies advanced at speed to threaten the flank of the witches.
On my first cast of magic in the game, a 3 dice roll of curse on the witches, resulted in a miscast at irresistible force, followed by a further 2 sixes (power drain), followed by a final six. Apart from a an improbable set of rolls, the net result meant my level 4 Shaman was now a level 1 with just Wyssans remaining! On the positive side, at least Luke had been unable to dispel it and so his witches were effectively pinned for the next turn.
Turn 2 - DE
Seeing the danger posed by the flying circus, the Dark riders withdrew in order to cover the flank of the witchesand were again buffed with flesh to stone to give them a fighting chance should the raging Minotaur decide to target them. (Edit - yes I did originally write ' lock horns' but took a step back, slapped myself and changed it). The warlocks moved more to the centre to ensure they were also out of the charge arc.
Meanwhile the central unit of riders advanced to impede the movement of the Gor horde (that had been hexed with Soulbight) and the executioners followed to provide support. The final unit of riders, not liking the attention they were receiving, skipped through the Beastmen lines so they were now positioned behind the Gor unit.
The woods continued to feed on the Witches and they lost another couple of the unit to its feeding frenzy.
The riders shooting improved dramatically but was still rather pathetic with a single Gor and harpy dying to the bolts.
Turn 2 - Beastmen
Seeing their opportunity to get rid of some of the pesky riders, the central chariot smashed into the unit in front of them. 3 of them were crushed beneath the Chariot and the others turned tail and fled with another losing his life in the wicked woods.
The doombull charged into the Dark riders and despite their boosted toughness promptly slaughtered one. Their faces took on a worried look as their attacks rebounded back onto them. The worry grew as the bull grew in stature, as it ripped their kinsman apart and fed on his blood.
On the other side of the map the stalemate continued with the Razorgor joining the chariot read to counter charge the Cold Ones. The Bestigor moved up ready to support the centre should it be required.
Magic involved miasma cast on the riders behind the Beastmen lines, reducing their movement by 3.
Turn 3 - DE
With a shout to Khaine the executioners charged the closest chariot, three of their number including the champion falling to the dangerous terrain. They quickly demolished the chariot and then piled into the side of the Gor horde.
The remaining dark rider rallied and moved to block the Gor unit.
With the expiration of their toughness buff, the doombull/riders combat was only going to go one way as in a frenzy of blows, his opponents exploded leaving a mist of blood and pile of gore.
Magic continued the way of the previous turns with doombolt failing to wound the Razorgor and Dwellers failing to cast.
The witches, finally free of the curse, moved into the woods and promptly lost another two of their number.
Turn 3 - Beastmen
The Bestigors charged into the rear of the executioners only losing 5 or so of their number to the dangerous terrain. Another 4 were cut down by the druchii as were 13 of the Gor before they struck back killing 15 of the unit. The executioners broke and were run down by the Bestigor.
The Doombull turned ready to charge the rear of the Witches.
In a spectacular display of one up man ship, the ungor raiders showed the dark riders how it was done and shot down one of the cold one knights and in that one move made back their points.
Turn 4 - DE
With a 2 point lead at this point, Luke proved his pointy eared pedigree and in an underhanded tactic, moved all his remaining Dark riders and his Warlocks into conga formation to surround the witches and prevent any units making it into combat with them.
With the evening drawing to a close, I called the game at that point.
After turn 3 it was 2-0 to Luke but if we had completed turn 4 it would have likely been 4-0.
I really enjoyed the game with Luke and was glad to finally play him. He had me in stitches many times, didn't take anything too seriously and was just generally good fun to play against. All qualities I like in an opponent.
The updated scenario worked really well and that is definitely the rule set we'll take forward into the competition.
Luke's use of fast cav was very good and just damn right frustrating and bloody annoying. It was definitely a learning experience (one i'll not necessarily rush to repeat) but it did open my eyes to their use.
I did make a number of errors in the game and there are a number of things to learn from it. My deployment was again somewhat lacking. I blocked a number of my own units and allowed his riders to prevent my units moving in the first turn.
In match ups with fast cav, I need to ensure that some of my chaff hangs back to allow me to charge them if they block my frontline units. Possibly this could be done by the Doombull as not only would he mince them thus gaining extra attacks but with the lack of shooting in my list he is one of the few reliable counters to them.
I should have placed the razorgor in the woods to bait the witch elves, knowing a charge would have caused dangerous terrain checks.
Honestly, Khazbar should be ashamed at the amount of miscasts he throws out. Admittedly at least this time he spiced it up and didn't take out half his unit. I should have expected that though as he was placed in that unit and the size bumped up just to cover that eventuality, so of course he would choose to go the other way and just nerf himself!
I also need to brush up on rules as the single dark rider should only have been able to rally on snake eyes as the unit was under 25% and may not have been there full stop as the standard should have been removed when they initially fled combat. This is one issue with not knowing the opponents list and the unit not having a standard represented in them.
It's funny but I always thought that players starting with chariots sideways to get the extra inch or so of movement was a bit gamey but after this battle I realised that if I had done it, it would have served a duel purpose and allowed me to actually discourage the blocking of the Bestigor. Something for me to think about if I'm screening the big blocks with raiders.
Awesome BatRep, knoffles! You produce some of the best, most thorough reports I've seen. I really enjoy reading your write-ups! Thanks!
Why thank you kind sir. The issue is my win/lose ratio. A couple of my regulars always state if I spend more time thinking through moves rather than scribbling notes I'd probably do much better 😊. It's actually quite addictive and writing it up really allows you to work out where you screw up. The issue is I often chop and change armies and normally average out to a game or two a month now and so forget all the lessons previously learnt... I've just realised that I'm now going to have to start a log of the mistakes lessons learnt for each army so I don't constantly repeat them.
This week I had lined up a game against Paul. He was one of the club members who had not played 8th for a number of years but had signed up to the competition and so wanted to re-familiarise himself with the rules. I jumped at the chance to have a game and not just because he is another club member who I’ve not had the pleasure playing before but also because he has a horde of Skaven and last time I fought them was in 4th Edition! Suffice to say I was looking forward to the game immensely.
I will say before writing, that it was another game cut short (3 turns). Unlike normal, it wasn’t just down to chatting whilst playing but also due to taking time out to draw the groups for the club Warhammer Competition
Herd of Khazbar the Magnificent
Bashor the Bloody - Beastlord (General), ogre blade, armour of destiny, shield – 238pts
Khazbar the Magnificent - Great Bray Shaman, level 4 - Lore of Beasts, Talisman of Protection, Brass Cleaver, jagged dagger – 335pts
Zurrock the Mighty - Wargor (bsb), HA, shield, Beast Banner – 191pts
Wazzock the Lame - Bray Shaman, level 1 - Lore of Shadow, dispel scroll – 100pts
31 Stormvermin – FC, HA, Halberd, Razor Standard, Doom Flayer weapon team – 335pts
3 Rat Ogres – Packmaster – 128pts
5 Giant Rats – Packmaster – 23pts
5 Giant Rats – Packmaster – 23pts
7 Gutter Runners – 126pts
Warp Lightning Cannon – 90pts
We randomly rolled for the Scenario and would you believe it, I ended up with the Wicked Woods scenario again (scenario list here). As Paul had not played this before we stuck with it for the game.
Terrain and Pre-match rolls
And just to continue the trend, we rolled map pack 4 (the same as my last game) which meant a river, 2 normal hills, 2 scree slopes and a forest.
After placing the terrain (including the additional wood from the scenario), it looked like this.
It terms of spell selection:
Khazbar ended up with: Curse of Anheir, Wyssans Wildform, Pann’s Impenetrable Pelt and Savage Beast of Horros.
Wazzock took Miasma
The Grey Seer got: Vermintide, Cloud of Corruption, Plague and Curse of the Horned Rat.
The Plague Priest took Pestilent Breath
Deployment is as per battle line so alternate. Paul placed the first unit and finished first so got the advantage to the first turn roll off (which he won, doubtless through some nefarious Skaven underhanded tactic!).
After the careless deployment in my previous game, I was far more rigid with it this time. The Gor Horde went front and centre to capture the woods with the Bestigor next to them. The rest of the Chaff and Chariots surrounded the two main blocks with the Doombull backing them up. This ensured that the majority of the army was within the BSB/General bubble. Again the river was impeding us but this should work in my favour with the Skaven reliance on ranks for leadership.
After his scouts deployed, it looked like this.
Turn 1 - Skaven
The chittering horde scurried forward, responding to the commands of the albino rat hiding behind the giant bell, with the exception of the elite rats who hung back waiting for their weaker kin to begin the initial assault. The battle line, if one could label a horde of vermin as such, split in two as it skirted the Wicked Woods. On one flank the gruesome monstrosity surged towards the beastmen lines at a particularly worrying speed.
On the Beastmen flank the Clan Eshin novitiates sprung their ambush, with a hail of poisoned stars announcing their presence peppering the nearest Razorgor. In their eagerness to prove their worth, the hapless rats fumbled most of their shots only wounding the animal.
The Warp Lightning Cannon, slowly built up its charge. The whine of motors could be heard from Beastmen’s side of the river. As the noise got louder the ratmen crew could be seen abandoning the machine just before it exploded.
Turn 1 - Beastmen
Bashor took one look at the hybrid WyrmRat advancing towards his bodyguard and in a fit of cunning that had shown his right to lead the herd, ordered forward the unit of raiders to get in the way of the monster. The petrified little things unsurprisingly failed to wound it with their bow-fire. The two nearby chariots, moved so that they would each get a charge off on it depending on what it targeted next turn.
The horde of Gor advanced up to the river, ready to contest the Wicked Woods, supported on both sides by Razorgor. The other unit of Ungor Raiders also advanced up to the natural barrier of the river in order to target the Giant rats (of which they managed to slay one in a dazzling display of shooting).
The rest of the herd manoeuvred so that the Eshin scouts would be in trouble in the following turn.
The winds of magic blew strongly and Khazbar cast wildform onto Bashor and his bodyguard in order to further improve their chances vs the Abomb. His pupil, Wazzock then cast Miasma onto one of the Ratling crews as they were both lined up and had a good view of his unit too.
Turn 2 - Skaven
Most of vermin units slowed their advance to a crawl. Now they good see them closely, none of the rats were eager to get to grips with the obviously superior humanoid specimens in front of them. The exceptions were: A group of giant rats that were driven up to provide a distraction: The Abomb, that smashed through the paper shield of Ungor, over running deep into the corner of the Beastmen deployment zone and the Doomwheel that careened up to the unit of harpies that had been edging over to the far edge of the battlefield and promptly fried one of them.
The Gutter runners, showing they were true Skaven, decided to pick on someone smaller than themselves and targeted the remaining unit of Raiders. Despite killing 3 of the 5 Ungors the plucky beasts refused to let themselves be cowed by the slinking rats.
On the other flank the two Ratling teams fired up their weapons. The first, still under the effects of a miasma, shot up an empty piece of ground. The second, lost control and managed to gun down a few of their own unit, narrowly missing the Grey Seer who had to duck inside the safety of the Great Bell to avoid being hit. A few seconds later he leapt out of the bell and grabbed hold of the frame to steady himself as the clapper struck and it let out an unholy clamour, the unit surging forward in response.
From the height of his new perch, the Seer spotted an opportunity and cast an irresistible Plague on the Bestigor. 7 of their number fell to the foul magics, which then jumped to the nearby Gor unit fully taking out almost 2/5ths of them! The feedback from the spell inflicted a wound on the Plague Priest who glared daggers at the Seer.
The plan of the utterly cunningly positioned chariots is revealed
Turn 2 - Beastmen
Realising that the herd had to get into combat to avoid the enemy magic, Bashor ordered his forces to advance. The remains of the Gor moved into the river, ready to capture the wicked woods in the following turn. The Bestigor also advanced up to the edge of the river.
One Chariot charged the Abomb inflicting a single wound (surprise Abomb! Oh you didn't die. Bugger). The other, backed up with one of the Razorgor, removed the offending giant rats that were in front of them. The Doombull charged the Gutter Runners who turned tail and fled, squirting fear musk. They didn’t run too far and were massacred in short order.
The rest of the chaff moved to block as many of the remaining Skaven force as possible.
Turn 3 - Skaven
With an excited squeak, one of the units of clanrats charged into the flank of the Razorgor. They were boosted by the Power of the Screaming Bell, as a Wall of Unholy Sound echoed across the battlefield giving them each an extra attack. The sheer number of these allowed them to make short work of the oversized pig and they reformed to face the sea of snorting Bestigor. The Seer supported this attack by summoning a swarm of rats that engulfed the nearest chariot, slightly damaging it. The Ratling weapon crew, glanced nervously at the Grey Seer and with a determination to save their skins, finished off the chariot.
The nearby Warlock crouched down and launched a rocket into the Bestigor. The resultant explosion, launched bodies everywhere and left the unit at under half its starting strength.
The Abomb made short work of the chariot that had dared to wound it.
Turn 3 - Beastmen
The harpies charged into the flank of the Giant Rats. In spectacular style they failed to kill anything and 3 of their number were slain in response. Shockingly they didn’t run.
The Doombull crashed into the Doomwheel but didn’t do enough damage to destroy it (it survived on a single wound).
The Bestigor, looking to avenge their losses on someone, charged into the river to vent their fury on the clanrats. A load of dead rats later (aided by the rank bonuses cancelled as both units were in the river), the clanrats fled and were run down (including the rat’s BSB).
In the final movement of the game, the remains of the Gor moved into the Wicked Woods, capturing it but sustaining four wounds in the process.
With a unit in the woods for 1 turn it was a 1-0 victory to the Beastmen (not that we were really gunning for the victory but I’ll take it as a moral one).
Holy shit, the Skaven are vicious. The amount of casualties his magic and the doom rocket caused was obscene (plague caused 25 in one cast with a further 12 from the rocket). I was not expecting that at all. It is random as anything though, so you can easily see how it could have also not done as well. For instance, the Doom Rocket landed directly on the Bestigor but could have massively overshot.
I love the randomness of them, sure playing Orcs and Goblins can be fun but the Rats take it to a whole new level. It’s impossible not to laugh even as you lose half a unit!
If I have taken one thing from this battle it’s I need to be far more aggressive and storm forward my large units. They are large enough to be intimidating and should not worry too much about combat casualties from quite a few units (or should be able to inflict a reasonable number in return). It won’t work in every situation but definitely something to keep in mind. It won’t work in every situation but definitely something to keep in mind.
Well that is probably it for the practice as next up, the competition games.