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Lost colony in 9th age - 2500 vs. VC 
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You are right I might have been too passive with the harpies. Keeping them in reserve is nice as I do not lose them for nothing and have them ready for some crucial redirecting but in games such as this one there are probably better uses.

I think your ideas are actually not that hard to incorporate (with the benefit of hindsight, of course). I could have just sent the harpies to the right flank in my first turn, together with the pegasus master, medusa and executioners. The casket was protected well with the scorpions and big units but the harpies might have managed to sneak to it somehow. The drawback would be that it would create a cluster of units vulnerable to panic and the casket spell. I was prepared to burn the scroll on light of death anyway but a unit of ten skeleton archers is more than enough to force a panic check in the harpies which might throw the entire flank in disarray. It might have been worth it, though.

As for avoiding the tomb guard, I could have just waited with warriors and witch elves untill the executioners would have completed their encirclement. Should the tomb guard advance towards them, I could have just backed off or redirected using the witch elves (they are 120 points compared to the 90 points of shades and medusas, this is affordable) - it would leave the backfield open to my attack and lead the priest far from the units that might need support so I think I would actually welcome this turn of events.

Anyway, I had another battle against Tomb Kings on friday (not with the same opponent, though) so you will be soon able to judge how much I have learnt. ;)

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Sun Feb 16, 2014 3:10 pm
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Lost colony vs. Tomb Kings (2999 points)

My opponent wanted to test a special Tomb King flag that allows a unit with cost up to cca 180 points to appear in proximity of the BSB some moment during the game. As this combination is rather costly, BSB plus expensive banner plus the unit itself, he wanted a high point battle so that the rest of the army would work in a nice way provided this test would be unsuccessful. So I have borrowed a few models and created an army on 2999 points.

Lost Colony:

Dragon sorceress, lvl 4 dark, talisman of preservation, dispel scroll: 590

Master, manticore, iron hard skin, heavy armour, SDC, shield, lance, cloak of twilight, BSB: 331
Master, manticore, iron hard skin, heavy armour, SDC, shield, ogre blade: 292

3x dark riders, shields, crossbows, musician: 3x 110
20 spearmen, FCG, standard of discipline: 225
2x 10 witch elves, musician: 2x 120

13 executioners, FCG: 186
5 harpies: 75
5 shades, ahw: 90
3x bolt thrower: 3x 70

2x 5 warlocks: 2x 125
2x medusa: 2x 90

I think I stayed somewhere half way between a proper monster list and infantry-based MSU. With the high cost of my monsters I forfeited the advantage of having an insane number of units; at the same time, with keeping the infantry I forfeited the extreme mobility a list full of flyers, fast cavalry and the occasional kharibdyss would provide. On the other hand, the list was very similar to the one I have played several times already; the only important additions were three big monsters and a zillion of fast cavalry models. I think the mixture was not that bad as with too many units and models on the table there would be not enough space to manoeuvre and with only big monsters and cavalry the army would go in a direction I don't really like.

Besides, a 3000 points game is a perfect occasion to play a dragon sorceress and she is just cool. Adding two manticores was then a logical step: they provide a solid punch, are immune to fear and being single models, they are easier to proxy or borrow.

Solo medusas have done quite well in the past battles and therefore they have stayed. With a flying general, their frenzy is not a much worse liability than the frenzy of witch elves.

As a last note I would like to add that this by no means an all-comers list – for example, it lacks in the armour cracking department and the manticore rider without Cloak could use a ward save against fire. But against Tomb Kings I hoped it would perform reasonably well while not being so tailored it would be unfriendly.

Tomb Kings:
Tomb King, 4+ ward (goes with skeletons)
High Priest, lvl 4 Nehekhara, Book of Ashur, 5+ ward (big skeleton archers)
Necrotect (provides hatred to his unit; skeletons)
BSB (with the aforementioned burrowing flag; skeletons)
Priest, lvl 2 light (the burrowing unit of archers)

40 skeletons, FCG
20 archers, champion
10 archers (with the ability to appear up to 12 inches from the BSB some moment during the game)
6 chariots, FCG
8 horse archers

20 tomb guard, FCG
Warsphinx
Hierotitan
3 sepulchar stalkers

Screaming Skull Catapult
Casket of Souls

It was to a large part an army of a modeller who just wanted to use all of the beautiful toys he collected – this is one of the reasons there were so many unit types present.
The desert force had some tools to worry about. The catapult could kill any of my monsters with one single hit if lucky, casket was able to cause solid damage too (poor medusas should the general fly far away), chariots would probably roll over any of my units should they manage to charge and combat elements were not that weak, either. On the other hand, I had lots and lots of mobility and battlefield control and a good selection of powerful units. I had all the tools to win this match – the question was if I could use them properly.
As a side note, I am far from being an expert on TK but it seems to me the army could use some fine-tuning. Too much magic shenanigans to support one single caster who cannot accomplish much. For their cost, another small chariot unit could probably be bought. And letting a mage dig himself out in the middle of the field is not friendly to him.

Deployment

Image

The Tomb Kings deployed in quite a standard way, the horde in the middle, archers behind as they suffer no modifiers anyway, catapult on the hill, casket hidden and so on. I think there was a spot in the northeast corner where my shades could theoretically deploy but the horse archers scouted there first.
I deployed and vanguarded two fast cavalry units to the west to redirect chariots and added a medusa to the mix for some countercharge options; my BSB was prepared to join the fight as well. In the centre, dark riders threatened warmachines while warlocks were ready to add their weight to the east if necessary. Infantry units were prepared to meet the skeleton horde should it advance; the eastern witch elf unit was looking forward to poison the sphinx. Sorceress and the other master were hiding from thrown stones behind the hill; the BSB was hoping his 3+ ward will be enough.
I did a big mistake with placing my warriors right behind the executioners. They should have gone behind the fast cavalry instead as those units were able to go out of their way far more quickly.

Tomb Kings, Turn 1


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As planned, on the west I pulled a double flee on the chariots which only shuffled a few inches forwards as a result.
As not planned, the central dark riders were actually in charge range, too. My opponent decided to try it, I elected to stand and shoot as he needed to roll a 12 and I really wanted to get to the artillery as soon as possible. The skellies actually managed to close the distance and suddenly there was a big unit rampaging in my backlines before I had the chance to prepare.
Horse archers moved as far backwards as possible and everything else advanced to my lines. A catapult shot aimed at the central bolt thrower scattered and killed three witch elves. Two warlocks fell to arrows.
In combat, dark riders were able to kill the necrotect right away, stripping the entire unit of hatred. Then they were butchered to the last man and the horde overrun into executioners.

Lost Colony, Turn 1

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On the western flank, both fast cavalry units rallied and went back to delaying duty while the medusa hurried to their side; on the east everything tried to encircle the enemy. Witches advanced boldly towards the warsphinx and harpies prepared for an assault against the catapult. In the centre, my BSB joined the fight although it was probably safer to stay away for a while. One unit of warlocks entered the kill zone in front of skeleton archers – I do not know why anymore, probably to draw attention from something else but I do not see which of my units would be a possible target worth saving in this way.
Shooting destroyed a chariot and picked off some tomb guards. Magic was without much effect, both word of pain and soulblight targeting the big skeleton unit failed.
In combat, my BSB killed the undead one, though he and his mount needed to direct all of their attacks that way. Four executioners targeted the tomb king and failed, for the remaining ten attacks I rolled six or seven ones and killed almost nothing. Many executioners died in return, thunderstomp did not accomplish much and both execs and manticore broke from combat. BSB died right away, executioners were run down and the skeleton unit slammed into my spearmen. Solid kill count given that it was the end of the first turn.
Harpies, frightened by the slaughter of their allies, turned to flee.

Tomb Kings, Turn 2

Image

Chariots charged dark riders who fled but were unable to redirect into warlocks. Good luck for me as now they were doomed.
Tomb guard managed to charge shades despite the distance was relatively long. Some of the undead warriors fell but then they destroyed the scouts with ease. Sixteen of them were remaining after the dust settled.
Finally, a warsphinx charged my witch elves but fell to poison before it got to strike.
Other than that the undead army just shuffled a bit here and there. The archers stepped forwards slightly and shot down all of the central warlocks, hierotitan advanced, too, horse archers backed away from the dark riders. Catapult was able to destroy the bolt thrower this time.
Sepulchar stalkers emerged right behind the dragon but were not able to wound. They shoot with strength 1, wounding on sixes almost always.
In combat, spearman champion challenged the tomb king. He was obviously lost in meditation, bracing himself for a noble death, as he rolled four ones to hit (two attacks with reroll). The ancient ruler acknowledged his dignity by killing him with one clear strike and not hacking his corpse apart. Otherwise there were only a few casualties on both sides. The spearmen lost (I think) but held.

Lost Colony, Turn 2

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Time for an attack: warlocks and medusa charged the chariots, manticore master the hierotitan, dark riders the horse archers (one of them passed his dangerous terrain test). Harpies rallied but dark riders fled the board. My dragon sorceress and the unengaged medusa encircled the tomb guard and witch elves advanced.
Shooters only managed to put two wounds on the stalkers. Magic was without much effect, too: a black horror destroyed five tomb guards but word of pain on the archers was dispelled.
In the central combat the skeleton horde managed to break the spearmen this time; they did not pursue and my warriors ended just at the board edge. Otherwise, the elves did well, though: hierotitan was destroyed and only one horse archer and one chariot were remaining while my troops had suffered only marginal losses.

Tomb Kings, Turn 3

Image

The skeleton horde chased my warriors away from the table and then redirected into a bolt thrower which was easily destroyed. Stalkers decided to charge harpies as they are five points more expensive than the bolt thrower; however, they suffered two wounds (losing one model in the process combined with previous shooting) and only killed one harpy and the combat resulted in a tie. Tomb guard shuffled a bit knowing it cannot avoid destruction no matter what.
The central witch elf unit was shot down and in combat, chariots and horse archers both disappeared. Warlocks reformed to face the catapult, medusa turned her back to the enemy as a charge would be long and the general was far away.

Lost Colony, Turn 3

Image

The elves charged in all directions or closed to the archer unit guarding the hierophant. Warlocks destroyed the catapult with ease and tomb guard was put to rest with the combined effort of dragon and medusa, helped by word of pain just to be sure.
The casket was destroyed by my master. As I had anticipated the following explosion I had held dark riders out of range; I had not taken care to do so with witch elves, though, and four of them fell.
Harpies suffered two casualties but inflicted two wounds on the stalkers which meant another tie.

Tomb Kings, Turn 4

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The archers had one last chance to shoot before the inevitable would come. They chose to aim at the medusa but only scored a single wound. The skeleton horde tried to shuffle in some way but with movement 4 it was not of much significance.
Harpies were still alive, tying the combat once more with no wounds on either side!

Lost Colony, Turn 4


Image

There is no kill like overkill, therefore, every available unit attacked the archers. I was not afraid of the skellies as they would need to roll a very high number if they wanted to charge and I was able to reform so that they would only hit the medusa, anyway. And then I would be able to surround them. Sorceress and medusa raced to help against stalkers or skeletons.
The sorceress cast a black horror which misfired. Luckily it did wound neither her nor her dragon, scattered away from anyone and collapsed.
In combat, harpies and stalkers tied once again (or maybe the harpies even won this time) and the archers had no chance of surviving. They did not even score a wound.
The resulting crumble destroyed the sepulchar stalkers. Victory for my brave harpies!

Tomb Kings, Turn 5

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The big unit backpedalled a bit, hoping to preserve their member's unlives at least.

Lost Colony, Turn 5

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Every elf available closed in to the big skeleton unit. Medusa was leading the way so that the unit could only charge her, manticore and witch elves were following right behind, dragon got to one side to a good position for breathing, warlocks to the other flank.
Black horror was failed. The dragon's breath hit 26 models, out of which 19 succumbed, though. The horde was suddenly looking far more manageable.

Tomb Kings, Turn 6

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The horde charged my medusa, killed it for a few wounds in return and overran into both witches and mantikore master.

Lost Colony, Turn 6

Image

Everything charged, everything made it. The only undead who got to strike was the king himself who did not accomplish much and subsequently crumbled. With his last words he cursed all who fought against him in this last battle and caused some hits to all units that were involved in the combat. This killed the other medusa, no other results were significant.

In the end I managed a 14:6 victory.

After-battle thoughts:

While I think I did reasonably well in this battle I was obviously guilty of some mistakes:

The first and probably most influential was of course allowing the long first turn charge. Spearmen being stuck behind execs was not good, either.

Turn 1: I do not see any benefit in sending my warlocks in the kill zone. Apart from that I was not able to decide if I wanted to fight the big skeleton unit or just accept the losses and send everything elsewhere. If my intention was to fight I should have turned the western witches and prepare a charge for turn 2. (I sent them forwards to help with the warsphinx should the need come but warlocks could have done this as well – and this task would not require them to turn into pin cushions.) If I did not want to fight there was no point to send in my BSB. Sure, destroying the undead BSB together with the burrowing unit that could not emerge anymore was nice but probably still not worth it.
I am not sure about the positioning of shades. I could have kept them outside of charge range. But it worked nicely to isolate the tomb guard.

Turn 2: Again a lone unit entered the kill zone. There were seven witches at the time, there was a chance some of them could survive and assassinate the priest. But it was probably unnecessarily risky.
I could have turned the eastern witches to face stalkers as in the northern half of the board there was not much they could expect to accomplish. But it would maybe allow a long charge from the tomb guard.
I was lucky with the chariots failing their redirection test but with three units against them they had slim chances anyway.

After that I do not see many interesting decisions that were made. It was good to wait with the charge for the last round as the breath weapon helped enormously. And my harpies were insanely lucky.

One funny thing is that while the first turn skeleton charge cost me a lot of points it also brought the very dangerous unit away from the rest of the undead. The skellies had no support then, not even by magic, and in return they could not protect the vulnerable units in the backfield. On the other hand, with all the monsters and fast cavalry in my list one horde would be easy to avoid no matter what and so this advantage was probably not worth all the dead elves.

The dragon sorceress worked well, I think. She made it possible to destroy two units thank to riding a dragon but at the same time she did some work even outside of combat. With a dragonlord I would feel I have to get him into combat to make him worth his points.
We could also observe how one catapult was able to control the movement of two monsters.

Overall I have the feeling that my army met a very good matchup. The undead were not without threats but in the end, only the skeleton horde managed to accomplish something – and I don't think I displayed some exceptional tactical prowess.

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Thu Feb 20, 2014 10:45 am
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Very clear explanation of what happened. That was nice to read. Thanks !


Thu Feb 20, 2014 11:18 am
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Corsair
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Great batrep indeed.
Congratz on the win.
I'm sure you'll get an addiction for larger games than the previous.

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Thu Feb 20, 2014 11:33 am
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Killed by Khorne
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Nice write up and win.

Thought things looked disadvantageous early game, but you fairly turned the tables!

8)

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Thu Feb 20, 2014 1:16 pm
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Hah! Him declaring a charge and needing a 12. I kinda hate players who do this, it will put you on the back foot should the charge fail, and its so unlikely to succeed.

Well fought! Your multiple units really won you the game in the end. I'm really inspired by your use of lone medusaes. Seems like a cheap "redirector", or alternatively charge staller. Super points about turning her backside to the enemy to avoid frenzy checks at LD2!

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Thu Feb 20, 2014 2:46 pm
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Wow, so many comments! It makes me feel like a celebrity. 8) :D Thank you all for posting, it is nice to see your appreciation.

@ Calisson: You are probably right. Though I am still a bit scared of all the terrorgheists, white lion death stars and demon princes that are awaiting in this territory. And of the number of models one needs. :D

@ T.D.: I was a bit worried, too. But the undead army lost cohesion. On my turn 2, chariots got stranded in a disadvantageous fight, warsphinx was destroyed and tomb guards with skeleton horde were far away from everything else. It was easy to fight from then on, given how slow Tomb Kings are.

@ Thraundil: A charge needing a 12 is not always a bad decision. Keep in mind Tomb Kings are not allowed to march. They are not that unlikely to move faster with a failed charge than they would with a normal move.

Medusas are fast throwaway models with small footprint and interesting combat abilities. I am starting to like them. I still cannot say if they can compete with dark riders - but at least they are not comped in ETC.

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Thu Feb 20, 2014 5:06 pm
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Marchosias wrote:
@ Thraundil: A charge needing a 12 is not always a bad decision. Keep in mind Tomb Kings are not allowed to march. They are not that unlikely to move faster with a failed charge than they would with a normal move.

If I remember it correctly, this is the main reason why the player even declared the charge. He just wanted some extra movement. :) But yes, I only realised this was the case afterwards, not being used to anyone wanting to risk long charges.
And I was very worried during the beginning of the game.

Calisson: I guess I'm probably the one standing in the way of larger battles, I am a slow painter and don't have much time these days. :(

Marchosias: Does this mean we should start thinking about how to make medusas? :D

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Thu Feb 20, 2014 6:51 pm
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@ Rowena: You know, if I really wanted a large army I could start to paint myself. Obviously, it is not that bad. ;)

Yes, devising a nice medusa conversion seems like a good amusement for a few sleepless nights. :)

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Thu Feb 20, 2014 8:50 pm
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Nice write up and good read. Thanks.
Congratulations on the win/

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Thu Feb 20, 2014 9:10 pm
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Lost Colony vs. Vampire Counts (1500 points)

We played with no restrictions at all. This meant I could have faced many different threats – ethereal spam, many screams, two units of ten black knights or a squad of vargheists, for example. The only thing I was safe from was a really powerful vampire lord but a hero level vampire could have appeared, too. My opponent could fit only a few of these threats into the 1500 points but I had to prepare for all of them. This is what I ended with:

Lost Colony:

Master, heavy armour, sea dragon cloak, shield, talisman of preservation, warrior bane: 182 (general)
Death hag, witchbrew, sword of anti-heroes, BSB: 170

10 witch elves, musician: 120
20 spearmen, FCG, standard of discipline: 225
5 dark riders, shields, crossbows, musician: 110

14 executioners, FCG: 198
5 shades, ahw: 90
5 harpies: 75
2x bolt thrower: 2x 70

2x bloodwrack medusa: 2x 90

The obvious question is of course, why no magic?
First, vampire counts are required to bring a sorcerer with the vampire lore. I thought that there are actually not that many spells I would desperately need to stop: In the first turns, I dispel the magic missile, in combat the reroll to hit spell or the one for reroll to wound depending on the enemy. All spells are useful but few are game-changing with this army. And it was not that likely I would see more casters on board.
Second, I wanted to bring a BSB for fear tests and a pegasus hero for hunting spirit hosts. There was no room to comfortably squeeze in three characters.
Third, I thought that I should be able to win my battles even without support and the only really awesome thing achievable would be in destroying ethereals. But most lores have two spells useful in this regard at maximum, one of them would surely be stopped with dice and the other one would not do that much. Besides, there would be other concerns such as line of sight and dispel scroll.
And most importantly, I was unable to decide which lore to choose. :D Light would feel too much like tailoring, fire and dark could be so powerful they would spoil the fun and other lores did not feel to have any real value for my army. I would bring warlocks if I had the models, but as their conversion is yet to be devised, I had to go without.

Other elements in the list are I think easier to understand:
Witchbrew helps a lot in clearing the vast zombie hordes. Sword of anti-heroes is here for the event there would be several cairn wraiths or banshees in the general's unit. If I have no magic, I need magic weapons, after all.
Pegasus hero is as protected against screams as one can get and has a magic weapon. He could hardly defeat a vampire but should be able to hold him in place for some time.
Bolt throwers are there to counter monsters or shoot some wolves.
Medusas are another source of magical attacks. They cannot be expected to do much but each wound is nice.

With this I thought I should hopefully be prepared for anything my opponent could throw at me. But was I right?


Vampire Counts:

Master necromancer, lvl 4 (spells: reroll to hit, reroll to wound, 2d6 S4, invocation)
Vampire, flying horse, 3+ armour, charmed shield, ASF, lore of shadow (miasma)

3x zombies (around 25 each), two of them with banner
3x 5 dire wolves
2x 10 hexwraiths, champion


Once I saw this army I was kicking myself for omitting the magic support. Hexwraiths can be really powerful but a threat of a nice fireball or flaming sworded bolt thrower would limit their movement considerably.
Another big threat was the vampire. I had no idea how much tooled for combat he was but he could have been quite a monster. On the other hand, losing such a pricey model because of one lucky single shot was surely not what my opponent would like to risk.
The rest of the army was not that dangerous but hard to get points from.

I think I had basically two possibilities. First, I could have been defensive, staying out of threat range of the wraiths and trying to slowly corner them. But doing this with only two heroes, one of them on foot, would have been rather difficult – and while 2d6 S4 is not that bad it could have still reduced my combat effectiveness rather quickly.
Therefore, I decided to press forwards. I knew I could easily disperse any unit of zombies. I hoped the threat of my witch elves approaching the necromancer's bunker would force hexwraiths to come close enough to get charged by one of the magic weapon wielding heroes. Or something with ranks. I was aware I would be probably get some love from the wraiths but hoped they would not get enough time to cripple me.

Deployment

Image

My opponent formed a nice and tidy castle right at the board edge while I have put my troops as far forwards as possible. He then won the roll for vanguards and moved his western wolves to block the movement of my dark riders, therefore I decided to stay put. He then moved his hexwraiths to the flanks.
Shades were hidden behind the hill because of the possible Gaze of Nagash that could fly in their direction.

Lost Colony, Turn 1


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My dark riders, having not vanguarded, were allowed to charge the western wolves. My other units advanced, cautious to stay out of threat range of hexwraiths. Shades left their hiding place for the possibility to shoot the last remaining wolf out of a unit. Pegasus master tried to cover as much of the battlefield as possible with a distance of possible charge. Medusas were sent to the western flank, hoping they could stare down some hexwraiths, lock them in combat, flank a unit of zombies or something. Now I see I should have used one of then to block the charge path to my bolt thrower – I think I was so focused on the hexwraiths that I have completely forgotten that a unit as cheap as dire wolves can actually do something, too.
My shooting reduced the central wolves to three models (the ones with a free path to a bolt thrower) and the eastern ones to two.
In combat, my dark riders killed the wolves with ease despite failing fear test. Originally, they wanted to overrun but in the last second I spotted the vampire hiding behind some rocks. Not wanting to fight against this monster yet I reformed the dark riders instead, facing north-east.

Vampire Counts, Turn 1


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First, the wolves declared a charge against my bolt thrower. Stupid me allowing that.
Second, hexwraiths attacked my dark riders. As I was quite close to the board edge, I elected to hold. Then I failed my terror test. But I was incredibly lucky in this regard as the dark riders stopped just at the board edge and just outside of the charge range of the vampire – and the hexwraiths were unable to catch them.
Otherwise there was not much action, only a slight repositioning here and there. With the bolt thrower locked in combat the vampire felt safe to leave his hiding place.
The necromancer tried to cast gaze of nagash at a medusa but I dispelled, subsequently an invocation added a zillion of zombies to each of the three units, healing the wolves in the middle to full strength in the process.
In combat, both bolt thrower and wolves suffered one wound and the last crewman held.
[url]
Lost colony, Turn 2[/url]

Image

I continued to push, thinking that if I hesitated, the hexwraiths would find a safe spot behind my lines and butcher me anyway. Therefore I charged the wolves with my frenzied executioners and followed with my other troops, not caring about the damage that would be inflicted on me. I was hoping that in the following turn I would get everything safely in combat.
My other mistake from the previous turn got apparent as I found out both of my medusas have to test for march block on their own leadership value. I got incredibly lucky by rolling the snake eyes on the northern one which allowed me to let her block the western unit of zombies. The second one failed the test and so she just turned around, prepared to jump into action.
Dark riders were able to get rid of the vampire's charmed shield.
In combat, my bolt thrower crewman slew one wolf and survived which meant the remaining beast crumbled. Executioners butchered their foes unsurprisingly and overrun ten inches, just in front of the eastern zombie unit. My opponent claimed I could have clipped the hexwraiths with this overrun, I am not sure but I would probably not do it anyway, fearing my BSB could get hurt. On the other hand, with her five attacks she could have done considerable damage and so it might have been worth the risk. Thoughts?

Vampire Counts, Turn 2


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One medusa was charged by a vampire, the other one by the western zombies. Western hexwraiths failed their march block and so they only repositioned slightly; the eastern ones crashed through executioners, killing ten of them, and landed in the middle of the battlefield.
The necromancer failed to cast a spell.
In combat, my medusas were both awesome: the northern one won the combat with zombies suffering no wounds, the other one managed to kill the vampire. She lost her life in the process but it was still incredible.

Lost Colony, Turn 3

Image

Pegasus master charged the hexwraiths and killed a lot, the remnants of executioners threw themselves at nearest zombies and killed even more. Spearmen found out they could not squeeze between hexwraiths and zombies and so they just reformed. They were not even able to reach the zombie unit in front of them due to the interfering medusa. Everything else closed for final assaults.
No magic, no good targets for shooting.

Vampire Counts, Turn 3

Image

Hexwraiths rode through spearmen, killing nine, and landed just next to their brethen fighting for their unlives. The zombie unit reformed so that the necromancer got shades in his front arc and was protected against a suicidal harpy charge.
In magic, I dispelled reroll to hit on the eastern zombies but let through reroll to wound and gaze on the shades. Four of the scouts died, the fifth left the battlefield.
In combat, my medusa was finally killed and the zombies reformed facing east. Hexwraiths perished and my master reformed to face the other unit of them. My executioners and death hag won combat again by a ton. After the cruble, only two models were remaining on each side – death hag plus executioner champion versus two zombies.

Lost Colony, Turn 4

Image

I devised a very cunning plan: I charge harpies in the flank of the necromancer's unit and witch elves in the fight with my BSB and last executioner. After the two poor zombies get minced the witches overrun and get to fight again against the necromancer's zombies. It was too late when I realized the overrun was blocked by the other unit that could only reform. Sad.
Otherwise, my master charged the other unit of hexwraiths and warriors decided to stay in place, afraid they would give up combat resolution unnecessarily.
Some hexwraiths fell while my master and general was remaining unharmed. More importantly, harpies managed to win combat, ensuring no Gaze of Nagash would be cast in the following turn on my poor unit of two models holding 470 points.

Vampire Counts, Turn 4


Image

The western zombie block charged my harpies. My opponent managed to get through both reroll to hit and to wound and the flying girls were all killed. In the other combat, the remaining hexwraiths fell.

Then we ran out of time and had to call it there. It is a pity as I am pretty convinced I would be able to get the necromancer and a much more decisive win. With the early end the result was a 14:6 – still a solid victory for me.

After-battle thoughts:
Wow, I was really surprised I managed to pull out a victory despite the two units of hexwraiths. I do not have the feeling I have rendered them useless with my positioning, though – I have denied some possibilities for sure but they could have just ended each move on the flanks, hidden behind terrain. I have the feeling that my opponent was trying to place them between his general and my assault troops in order to slow down their advance but I am really not sure. I was definitely lucky with the failed march block test.
I was not really paying attention to the range of my general and BSB. For the BSB it was no big deal as I had deployed her centrally and most of my units were frenzied, anyway (though I fear the spearmen might have been out of reach for their panic test after the hexwraith attack). But leaving the medusas without inspiring presence was rude to them.
Medusas are nice speed bumps but they should stall the advance of my enemies and not of myself. :D
I was clearly lucky when my medusa killed a vampire. On the other hand I had two bolt throwers ready to single shot him should he emerge from the combat victoriously. Two bolt throwers on short range against T5 with two wounds should suffice.
Witchbrew is nice, it was incredible how much damage even a unit of four executioners can dish out. Under the latest ETC FAQ you only test for frenzy at -3 Ld if the majority of models in the unit has super frenzy - this means the executioners would test at Ld9 with reroll which is solid.
And I have to apologize to my opponent that I rolled one more attack for my death hag than she shoudl have as the effect of additional hand weapon is lost if a magic weapon is used. It made no difference, though.

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Thu Feb 27, 2014 9:21 am
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Marchosias wrote:
In combat, my medusas were both awesome: the northern one won the combat with zombies suffering no wounds, the other one managed to kill the vampire. She lost her life in the process but it was still incredible.
:shock:
You are definitively the best advocate of this despised unit.

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Thu Feb 27, 2014 12:30 pm
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" :shock: " very nicely describes my own reaction. :D It could have been even better, actually, as the hero failed his initiative test for Avert Your Gaze! - alas, I failed to wound after that. Rolling a killing blow would be hilarious.

Actually, between stand and shoot (which has a 20% chance of inflicting at least a wound), avert your gaze and the actual attacks, the probability of killing a vampire is around 10% if my maths is correct. Not that bad if you weigh in how cheap the medusa is.

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Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:08 pm
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Excellent write up. Thanks for the good read.
Nice win and you must be feeding your Medusae something, I'm sure.

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Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:50 pm
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I love these reports! Congrats on the recent wins!! It's pretty awesome watching your force grow from 0 to 1500 and having the corresponding PLOG to really envision them on the battlefield. That 3k point game looked like a lot of fun with all those flying monsters!!!

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Mon Mar 03, 2014 8:38 pm
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Actually, the force itself doesn't grow as fast as it seems, Marchosias just gets better and better at getting more points out of the models we have. :) (And sometimes we have to borrow models as well)
I'm working on more and have some thibgs planned, but... I really wish I had more time.

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Tue Mar 04, 2014 6:09 pm
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@ MangoPunch: This was pretty much the intention, to map the evolution of an army and of a player. It is nice to see someone finds this interesting.
The bad thing is, while I am able to field a 2000 point army with models I own (or with relatively good looking alternatives for actual models) it still does not suffice for some megalomaniacs. :roll: :D

As for the flying monsters: They are fun indeed but I think I met there the cap of what I would be willing to field. I like to see armies, not squads of ultra powerful heroes and I feel bad for drowning more than a third of my points in there. There are way nastier builds out there than mine of course but that does not mean I have to join that company. Maybe when I send my application to the ETC team but something tells me this is no immediate concern. :D

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Tue Mar 04, 2014 9:24 pm
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Lost Colony vs. Warriors of Chaos (2000 points)

I was contemplating for a while what 2000 list could I make from the models and model substitutes I have at my disposal and this is the current version:

Lost colony

Supreme sorceress, lvl 4, pegasus, talisman of preservation, dispel scroll: 340
Master, Pegasus, full mundane, CoT: 188
Master BSB, Pegasus, SDC, HA, shield, dawnstone, sword of might, dragonbane gem: 207

10 witch elves, musician: 120
23 spearmen, FCG, razor banner: 282
5 dark riders, shields, crossbows, musician: 110

14 executioners, FCG: 198
5 harpies: 75
5 shades, ahw: 90
3x bolt thrower: 4x 70

2x medusa: 90

As you can see there are all the usual suspects present. Mounting the sorceress turned the spearmen into a decent fighting block which does not have to be played too defensively, flying masters provide some mobility as I have not that many agile troops otherwise.

There were two things I was not sure about. First, if lore of metal is not excessive as I have executioners and bolt throwers as armour counter and while lore of metal is nice even without searing dooming everything in sight some other lore might provide me with more options. Second, if I am prepared to face an army full of cannons when half of my agile troops that should dispose them off normally double as their primary target.


Warriors of Chaos:

Slaanesh demon prince, flying, 5+ ward, charmed shield, familiar and probably even more stuff
Exalted hero on demonic mount, S7, 4++ probably?
Sorcerer, lvl 2 shadows

18 Nurgle warriors, shields
2x 5 dogs, vanguard
5x marauder horsemen (I think), flails, javelins
2x Slaanesh chariot
3 skullcrushers, musician
Hellcannon

So there were some things that would be a pain but it could have been much worse. Skullcrushers are very potent but there were only three of them, each chariot could receive his own pegasus master as his executioner, dogs and fast cavalry can get shot down easily and hellcannon has a chance to fail in some way. The infantry block can be avoided, thinned down or attacked from many sides. Or everything at once.
On the other hand, everything in this army was a good hammer and I could hardly avoid or shoot down all of it. Some heavy manoeuvring was to be expected.

Spells:
My sorceress: searing doom, glittering robes, golden hounds, final transmutation
Demon prince: everything except slicing shards and the signature
Sorcerer: miasma, pit of shades

I rolled no doubles and swapped plague of rust for searing doom. I thought I would mostly just want to blast things, anyway.

Deployment:


Image

Refused flank from both forces! I thought it was clearly advantageous for me as it gave me more time to shoot but my opponent had a plan in mind, too.
Spearmen got deployed ten wide so that a hellcannon shot could not kill that many of them.
I have put my shades right before the dogs to block their vanguard (reading about the new dwarves had some merit, it seems), therefore they just hid behind the hill. Not much happened otherwise, outside the fact that my western bolt thrower was suddenly very near to being charged.

All terrain was ordinary. The Warriors finished deployment first and got the first turn.

I should warn in advance that we have started later than we originally intended and therefore we only got to turn 4.

Warriors of Chaos, Turn 1

Image

The hellcannon failed its leadership test and crashed into my dark riders.
On the west, everything moved aggressively forwards; on the other hand, the centre was remaining cautious. I was slightly surprised as I thought that the combined force of hellcannon, skullcrushers and warriors should be able to tear me apart but being a chaos player probably does not mean charging heedlessly.
There was not much my opponent could cast apart from blasting my bolt thrower and medusa in oblivion. I have decided I want to keep my scroll for some cacophonic choir and so my bolt thrower perished. The medusa survived, though.
In combat, dark riders caused no wounds, suffered four and fled. Hellcannon stayed put.

Lost Colony, Turn 1


Image

Both my masters charged the hellcannon. Sure, the one with cloak is only awesome when charging and the other one only has S5 against T6 but I hoped they would destroy it soon enough with their combined efforts. They went as far east as possible so that the skullcrushers could have not charged them. Executioners were moved at full speed, prepared to aid.
Now that I think about it, maybe I should have sent only the BSB as he is better defended and let the cloak master threaten skullcrushers somehow. The BSB would have no chance to defeat the cannon but it would be quite a safe bet he would hold unscratched before executioners would come to help.
Otherwise I was rather conservative. The dark rider rallied as I have forgotten he needed to roll insane courage (a big apology to my opponent but it had no impact on the game). Sorceress flew to a point 18 inches from the warrior block and 24 inches from skullcrushers, a distance she was keeping the entire game.
Shades went up the hill (actually, two went up the hill thanks to which the entire unit counted as being there) and shot some dogs. The rest panicked and ran off the board.
On the west the medusa had only one turn when she could try to be useful. She decided to step right in front of the prince and her deadly gaze was so frightening that the chaos champion hid behind the magical protection of his charmed shield. I think this success was good enough.
Harpies hid behind the hill. They could have charged the dogs and would probably defeat them but would then get destroyed by the warriors or exalted hero, not a good trade. I could have sent them to the east but I probably thought it gets too cramped and hoped I would be able to send them behind the enemy lines in the following turn.
My magic did nothing – I think I failed a searing doom on three dice or something like that. My western bolt thrower was gone, the eastern one could not fire as it had failed its panic test when the dark rider has fled through but the central one was able to inflict some wounds on the skullcrushers at least.
In combat, my masters combined did a marvellous one wound and the demon went nowhere as it is unbreakable.

Warriors of Chaos, Turn 2


Image

Harpies were surrounded from all sides. Demon prince charged the medusa (no stand and shoot, sadly, but it would probably not harm him, anyway) – which kept him out of range of important spells for another turn. Crushers and warriors closed to a distance where I was starting to feel threatened but they were still quite far away.
Magic did not do much, only the demon prince was able to kill the medusa with some spell.
There was a shooting phase! :shock: The marauders threw javelins at harpies but scored no wounds.
In combat my cloak master was injured as was the hellcannon. I combat reformed to make some place for executioners.

Lost Colony, Turn 2

Image

Executioners charged the hellcannon, chopped it down and everything reformed facing west. I was trying to threaten with a flank charge of my pegasus masters on the skullcrushers but did a bad job in this regard – with a bold enough move they could get out of my forwards arc.
Medusa and shades got in range to try some lucky shots, sorceress flew behind the crushers. The infantry units just shuffled slightly, trying to stay out of combat as long as possible but afraid of showing their backs to the enemy.
Harpies failed their march block test and so I tried to hide them right behind the Chaos fast cavalry. A better option would have probably been to attack the dogs: if they would stick in combat they would get destroyed by the marauder cavalry next turn but delaying cavalry is at least some achievement and if they would win and overrun they would get charged by warriors but with a bit of luck they would either successfully flee.
Magic did not do much, there was some dispelled searing doom on the crushers involved. I think that either this turn or the next I managed to draw out the scroll with a final transmutation cast on the big warrior unit.
I had some limited success with shooting as one skullcrusher left the table. Two were remaining at full wounds, though.

Warriors of Chaos, Turn 3

Image

My opponent commented that he was pleased with the flow of battle so far: he had formed a battle line parallel with the shorter table edge which meant it would be harder for me to outflank him. I was pleased, too, as I was shooting for two rounds without any meaningful fights going on; but given how effective it was he was probably right.
It was found out that a chariot could actually see my harpies and so it declared a charge. I held and the harpies were destroyed. I should have rather fled - the harpies were dead anyway but a failed charge would slow down the chariot at least.
Everything closed very aggressively and the elven forces were suddenly very pressed.
I am not sure what had happened with magic but it had no real effect. I might have used my scroll.

Lost Colony, Turn 3

Image

My witches failed their leadership test and charged skullcrushers. I have really tried to save them and rolled double ones for their charge distance but after some measuring we found out they got there anyway.
Spearmen prepared to receive a charge from something; why they have not backed away is a mystery to me. Executioners moved closer to action, masters positioned for some counter charging, medusa and dark rider stayed in reserve, otherwise I was maintaining a healthy distance. I am not sure why I have not tried to charge the skullcrushers with my twilight master – I think I had reformed badly and could not see them. Or maybe I have feared that should he fluff his attacks the crushers would win combat and run him down. Even a single crusher could kill quite a few witches.
In magic, I drew the scroll by casting a final transmutation on the big warrior unit.
Then I got incredibly lucky in the shooting phase. I tried two single shots at the demon prince, one of them through hard cover – and both of them hit, wounded and were not warded. This was really a glorious day for my bolt throwers; but let us not forget the medusa who had destroyed the charmed shield.
Combat went as expected and not a single witch elf survived while skullcrushers suffered no wounds.

Warriors of Chaos, Turn 4


Image

Here we can see how badly I had moved the previous turn. I could have done nothing with the exalted hero assaulting my bolt thrower but the skullcrushers not only were able to charge my spearmen relatively easily (I could have backed away at least) but I was able to send neither executioners nor BSB into them, only the twilight master could have possibly done it.
Marauder horsemen threw some javelins at my twilight master without success. In magic I dispelled a big pit of shades aimed at my executioners just to be sure. This meant a miasma could go through on my warriors but I thought they were doomed, anyway.
The bolt thrower was easily squashed. Many warriors died but they held on steadfast. The exalted hero overran into warriors but did not fight again as my opponent had resolved the fight in the wrong order.

Lost Colony, Turn 4


Image

No reasonable charges were possible. I sent my masters to hunt some chariots and continued the avoidance game. It was almost sure by this time that this was the last round so I did not pay that much attention.
This time my final transmutation was not stopped and an impressive nine warriors including champion died. The sorcerer has survived, though, so no points for me. Even the panic was passed.
In combat, spearmen were destroyed, unsurprisingly. But they got a wound through on the skullcrushers.

As we had to end there we counted the points and it made a nice 10:10.

After-battle thoughts:

I think I was saved here by quite a lot of luck. The hellcannon charging me was a blessing as the last thing I wanted was templates dropping on my infantry; besides, I wanted to charge it with both masters from the beginning which is obviously not the way to kill the thing. Here I had executioners to help which most probably saved the masters.
Then I was incredibly lucky with two bolt throwers slaying a demon prince. It was not that unlikely but I gained really lot with this. He was the main source of my points and a big danger with all his magic and combat ability.
Medusas could actually be quite good at destroying hellcannons. I did not believe it during the battle but once she can just stay in place and shoot she could easily do three wounds a round. It would take a while to get them in range but still it is something to consider.
Harpies were wasted. I should have moved them to the east turn one and redirected something later.
In games against an armour wall the witches can serve as an additional redirector. They are somewhat expensive for this task but they do not cost that much and they have limited use, anyway. Of course, they have to restrain their frenzy first.
I have lost quite a few points by badly anticipating what the skullcrushers would do. I should have known they would wipe the witch elves and either pursue or charge something next turn. With a well-placed medusa I could have gained a possibility for a flank charge with executioners. Maybe even supported with warriors and their ranks. On the other hand, there were quite a few possibilities and it would have not been that easy to prepare for them all. Stupid MSU. :D

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Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:29 am
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Nice write up. Thanks.
I tend to agree you got a little lucky with some rolls, but that just evens out games you may have lost to bad rolls.
Some good learnings in there.

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Tue Mar 18, 2014 8:07 am
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His was a terrifying list for 2000 points. A lot of power!

Reapers were heroic! I think your own post battle thoughts sum it up well. Against WoC we need to pick our fights...but that is easier said and done with their mobility!

Thanks for the report :)

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Sun Mar 23, 2014 7:33 pm
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Lost Colony vs. Vampire Counts (2700)

Originally, I did not want to write this report at all (or rather wanted to get over it as quickly as possible) as I was lazy and made some serious mistakes I am not really proud of. Basically, the game ended turn 4 due to lack of time and it was the only thing that saved me from total destruction. In the end, though, I thought there is some education value in the game and so, here is the report. But it is still done a bit lazily, the diagrams are only very approximative.

I was playing against VC at 2700 points – it was the same opponent as in the VC report a few weeks ago. I strongly suspected to see some hexwraiths and terrorgheists and I knew I should be prepared for some killer vampire lord as well.
At the same time I wanted to use as many of my own models as possible. In the end I fielded everything I could scrape; in the units of witch elves and cavalry, some empty bases had to be uses, but otherwise the army was quite aesthetical. And this is good!

Lost Colony:

Dreadlord, pegasus, LA, SDC, shield, ogre blade, dragonhelm, 4++, pot. of foolhardiness: 301
Supreme sorceress, lvl 4 dark, dark pegasus, black amulet, TOTS, dispel scroll: 370

Master, pegasus, SDC, HA, shield, lance, cloak of twilight, BSB: 213

10 witch elves, musician: 120
10 witch elves, musician, standard, banner of eternal flame: 140
20 spearmen, FCG: 210
2x 5 dark riders, shields, crossbows, musician: 2x 110

14 executioners, FCG: 198
5 harpies: 75
5 shades, ahw: 90
4x bolt thrower: 4x 70

2x medusa: 90
Bloodwrack shrine: 175
5 warlocks: 125


Lots of options, good board control, but only one magical weapon. Otherwise, I think the army was well equipped to handle anything a VC player could come with.


Vampire Counts:

Vampire Lord, lvl 1, red fury, quickblood, nightshroud, great weapon, 4++?
3x necromancer, lvl 1 or 2 vampires
Cairn wraith

2x zombie block
1x skeleton block, shields
4x 5 dire wolves

3 vargheists
2x 9 hexwraiths
2x terrorgheist


So I was right with my predictions. The list was mean, terrorgheists being especially dangerous to my lone characters, hexwraiths to the small units. A difficult positioning battle was to follow.
One more comment on the vampire lord. The combination of quickblood and red fury was known to me: a combat monster with ASF and additional attack for each kill can shred through elves at enormous speed. The nightshroud is perhaps even more annoying, though, as it strips enemy models in base contact of all strength bonuses from weapons. This meant that in my army I could allocate S4 attacks at him at best – far from ideal against his T5. Of course, nightshroud only counts as light armour, so he probably had only 5+ armour but still. The interesting part is that the unit most likely to kill him were actually witch elves – though it is very unlikely they would achieve it in one round as they would be stripped (pun intended) of their rerolls.
Of course, my sorceress had the black amulet for a reason but such a fight is not easy to arrange.

The plan was simple: create no-go zones for everything dangerous, shoot the terrorgheists, magic the hexwraiths away (or charge with dreadlord if possible), avoid the vampire lord. It is the execution that lacked.

Deployment

Image

A nice and tidy formation on part of my opponent. I was making sure to stay out of potential range of hexwraiths and terrorgheists (though I am not sure if I took vanguard and the movement spell into account) and at the same time trying to cover as much space as possible with WE and warlocks who the terrorgheists should be afraid of. There were many units on my eastern flank as I thought I could storm it quickly and then assault something from flank or rear. And I needed to deal with the wolves, anyway.
I have then placed my heroes in front of the infantry as I thought the infantry is not going to charge anything, anyway, and so it will not be stalled in any way. A big mistake.

Vampire Counts, Turn 1


Image

The eastern flank was rather uneventful, it moved a bit towards me but not too much. Centre advanced, the eastern hexwraiths were afraid of my tricks and stayed behind terrain.
The western flank is interesting, though. First, the terrorgheist was able to scream on my dark riders – not sure if it was bad measurement on my part or a movement spell. Luckily, two remained and passed panic. Then he shielded his terrorgheist – who was in a very comfortable charge distance from my warlocks – with hexwraiths.
In the magic phase, a unit of zombies appeared in my centre, threatening the bolt thrower there, and six witches were killed with a Gaze of Nagash. I let it go as I thought worse things will come.

Lost Colony, Turn 1

Image

A charging madness affected me. Harpies and shades into dire wolves, medusas to support them; with a bit of luck I could have wiped out all the units in one go and maybe even overrun into the vargheists. The only unit not charging were dark riders who feared dangerous terrain tests and witches who were too far away and just advanced at full speed. Medusas were not fast enough (they needed 8 or 9 I think) which meant the clearing process will be slower but hey, no worries here.
Then there was the unit of risen zombies. I could have blocked them with my BSB or something (maybe even the BWS or a medusa) but for some reason I thought I have to send witches their way. They were blocked by my sorceress, though, so I charged her into dire wolves and sent executioners to her support. I probably do not have to stress how immensely clever this move was.
In magic I concentrated on the western hexwraiths. Doombolt from warlocks was stopped with dice and black horror scrolled, though. Then I tried to roll a six for one-dicing soul stealer but failed (in the game I used four die for black horror and left one; I could have attempted to cast the black horror with three, then a subsequent soul stealer would be quite probable, but I feared I would lose concentration; this way I drew the scroll at least).
My shooting was insane. First two bolt throwers managed to kill the nearer terrorgheist. Another bolt thrower wounded the other terrorgheist but my opponent succeeded with regen. I am not sure with the remaining shots, they accomplished nothing significant.
Combats: dire wolves wiped, zombies wiped, harpies overran to safety, shades into the last wolf unit, sorceress into hexwraiths.

Vampire Counts, Turn 2

Image

Vargheists charged shades. The unengaged hexwraiths rode through witch elves, killing them all, and returned next to the rock. Skeletons and zombies advanced.
Terrorgheist flew to the sorceress and killed her with one single scream. This allowed hexwraiths a combat reform (or we thought so at least) and so they formed a long line and ensured the warlocks were unable to charge the terrorgheist.
In combat, all dire wolves and four shades were killed and the combat was drawn.

Lost Colony, Turn 2

Image

The medusa, far from her general, successfully charged zombies and dark riders joined her. Another mistake I think as the zombies were out of position to do anything significant and the riders should have rather shot something or prepared a flank charge. Witch elves attempted a charge on vargheists (needing something like 8 or 9 again) but failed. More importantly, dreadlord charged hexwraiths but rolled 1,1,3 and fell one inch short. I have decided to blame everything on this unlucky roll. :D
In the remaining moves, BSB flew west to threaten the terrorgheist, medusa and dark riders tried to protect bolt throwers, executioners shuffled backwards a bit.
Doombolt was dispelled, not sure about the soulblight. Bolt throwers accomplished nothing this turn but the two dark riders showed them how is it done and sneaked one wound on the terrorgheist. I they even managed two wounds but one of them was saved with regen but I am not sure anymore.
Several zombies died, elves were unharmed.

Vampire Counts, Turn 3


Image

Vargheists were able to charge dark riders without getting in contact with the medusa. Terrorgheist charged a bolt thrower. Hexwraiths rode through warlocks, killed four and panicked the last one who left the board a few turns later. Zombies turned to face the warlocks – or maybe they did it the turn before, it hardly matters. Skeletons with the bloodthirsty vampire lord kept advancing.
In the magic phase, a brand new unit of zombies appeared which both blocked the executioners and threatened with a charge against bolt thrower again. The terrorgheist screamed on executioners and killed two.
Bolt thrower crew was destroyed, dark riders killed to a man. I am not sure what happened to the medusa but she did not survive, either.

Lost Colony, Turn 3

Image

Time to get some points, at last. The shrine unit charged vargheists, together with the second medusa which I did not even try to restrain. Witch elves charged zombies and cloak of twilight master the remaining terrorgheist. This time, all charges were successful.
Executioners shuffled to the right to protect bolt thrower from zombie apocalypse and dreadlord moved to the west to deny the hexwraiths options as usual. The positioning of these two units was my second big mistake in this game, as we will see in a short order.
No magic, no important targets for shooting. A few skeletons fell, most probably.
Combats went my way, I think neither the terrorgheist nor the vargheists even got to attack. The beasts have no protection, after all. Zombies got a few attacks back but none of them wounded and so the right flank was mine at last – for a much bigger cost than it should have been, however.

Vampire Counts, Turn 4


Image

My opponent spotted my mistake and charged the executioners. Vampire lord singlehandedly killed seven of them before they could strike as he was fighting at initiative 7. I attempted a killing blow but was not this lucky. The executioners lost by a ton and fled and the skeletons pursued right into my dreadlord.
There was some unimportant shuffling of other units, too. Hexwraiths got in positions where they could have caused quite a harm if the game was longer.

Lost Colony, Turn 4

Image

Knowing this was the last turn, I sent everything I could against the big skeleton unit (the shrine unit had to overrun through the unit of risen zombies first but this was easy). I do not think I had a plan, I just wanted to see something spectacular before the end.
To cut it short, I killed and crumbled a ton of skeletons but it was by no means enough. Dreadlord was unable to wound the vampire lord (I should have attacked the cairn wraith probably but it did not matter much), afterwards the lord showed why he is to be feared and destroyed my general in one round. A bit lucky on his part as I was still saving on 5+ 4++ but not that improbable.

With this, the game ended, luckily for me. If it continued I would be totally smashed by the vampire lord and hexwraiths as I had nothing left that could threaten them.

After-battle thoughts:


I think this game illustrates nicely how VC are able to gain ground with the threat of terrorgheists and hexwraiths and how the ethereals can protect their material friends from charges.
Some of my mistakes are apparent. Charging with the sorceress was stupid and it would be even if I had no other means to stop the zombies from swarming my bolt thrower.
Which brings me to the observation that a good model for this kind of backfield protection is the BWS. If alone, it is nicely maneuverable. There was no need to jump into the spearmen unit right away.
The overrun into dreadlord was another grave mistake. I am not sure what should I have done with the executioners, though. They could have just backed off and made the charge less likely. Or perhaps they could charge the zombies, overrun and then flee the skeleton charge. Disposing of 12 zombies with nine attacks, charge, flank and banner is possible but by no means granted.
Then there were some less significant mistakes. I should have been more patient on the eastern flank as if I had fought with all units at once I would overwhelm it with negligible losses. I should have been more careful with warlocks – it was impossible to keep them completely out of hexwraith range but I could have ensured the attacks would lead the ghosts further from my troops.
Last, I am not sure if one magical weapon is enough. I will try to take two so that each unit of hexwraiths (three are unlikely) can get its own personal bodyguard.

What I think, though, is that maybe my complete strategy was bad. The vampires had no ranged presence save from a lousy 2d6 magic missile. Terrorgheists scream powerfully but have to come really close to the enemy. I could have clustered in a corner pretending to be a dwarf and just shoot single shots at terrorgheists and magic missiles at hexwraiths. The enemy would have been forced to come to me and suffer a countercharge under my terms. If I would have played it correctly, at least. :) The army I have can be pretty defensive if it really tries.

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Thu Apr 03, 2014 8:48 pm
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Miscast into the Warp
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Thanks for the write up. I feel you may have learnt more in that game than in some of your wins.
Thorough analysis and you have identified a number of key mistakes you made. The VC do have a number of nasty threats and if you manage to eliminate your counters you can be at their mercy.

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Thu Apr 03, 2014 10:08 pm
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Lost Colony vs. Dwarves (ETC)

Lost Colony:

Dreadlord, pegasus, ogre blade, cloak of twilight, dragonhelm: 301
Supreme sorceress, lvl 4 heavens, obsidian lodestone: 265

Master, pegasus, sword of might, charmed shield, potion of strength: 177
Master BSB, pegasus, great weapon, 4++ talisman, dragonbane gem: 211
Sorceress level 2, dispel scroll: 140

2x 5 dark riders, shields, crossbows, musician, champion: 2x 120
20 spearmen, FCG: 210
10 witch elves, FCG, banner of eternal flame: 150

4x bolt thrower: 4x 70
2x 10 executioners, musician: 2x 130
5 harpies: 75
5 shades, ahw: 90


The list was discussed quite extensively in the appropriate section. To sum up: three pegasus heroes should control the board and pick off valuable targets (chariots and such), heavens magic is again strong against single models (two rather cheap magic missiles causing D6 S6) and can really help control the enemy's movement with comet, amongst other merits; beast sorceress is there for wildform; witch elves work well against monsters and regeneration, executioners as can openers; bolt throwers can to be used against big targets or to clear chaff; and on top of that I am fielding almost everything I own. It could be interesting to see if we can still live without warlocks, after all.


Dwarves

Lord on shieldbearers, T6, 5 wounds, ignores armour, immune to killing blow
BSB, not sure about him
Runesmith with dispel scroll

20 or so longbeards with hand weapons and shields, slowness standard
20 or so longbeards with great weapons, slowness flag
28 hammerers, slowness flag again
5 rangers

2x gyrocopter
Gyrobomber
Organ gun
Cannon


It seems to me this army is somewhere in the middle of two approaches. The combat blocks are very tough: everything in six inches from the hammerers is stubborn, the soldiers attack at high strength (even the hand weapon longbeards have S4 AP); on top of this, it is quite difficult to get off a successful charge as the dwarf player always rolls a die and subtracts the result from your charge distance. The artillery is numerous enough to restrict the opponents movement but by no means as powerful as it could be. If the infantry blocks had vanguard it would be a dangerous aggressive army. If there were more war machines the army could castle in the good old fashioned dwarven way. This force can do neither very well, though.
And it only dispels with +2. This is a good example that while the dwarves have access to nasty things they cannot have it all.
Seeing this I was quite confident. The war machines are dangerous of course but I should have the means to silence them somehow; helicopters are scared of my bolt throwers and heavens magic missiles; and the big blocks should not be that hard to avoid. More importantly, while the infantrymen are insanely good in a grind my army should be able to concentrate enough power on one place to overwhelm them.

If I play it correctly, of course.

In magic, I had Iceshard Blizzard (swapped from Wind Blast), Harmonic Convergence, Thunderbolt and Chain Lightening on the lvl4; the lvl 2 had Wildform and Flock of Doom. I was quite sad for the absence of Comet but it was still nice.

The book of grudges said dwarven characters hated mine.


Deployment

Image

The ruins in the middle are representing impassable terrain.

My opponent wanted to hide his aircraft behind infantry to gain hard cover. He assumed a nice compact formation but his canon was badly defended as I was able to close in unseen by the organ gun. I am not sure about the deployment position of the eastern longbeards as I only have a photo from the end of Turn 1.
I held everything outside of the range for both organ gun and flyers. My pegasus characters were hidden from the cannon; I have not tried to hide my bolt throwers, however, as I wanted them to deal with helicopters and the cannon could only get one of them a turn. I have put both executioner units to the east to have more time to come up with some sort of encirclement; witches went to the west to attack from the other direction or serve as a somewhat expensive redirector.
What I messed up was the position of spearmen. I wanted to have both mages in range of the cannon for some magic missiles on turn 1 but isolating such an expensive unit should not be done without a plan which I had not. And I will not comment the fact that they were less than six inches apart from the bolt thrower.

Dwarves, Turn 1

Image

The dwarves advanced forwards at their lighting-like speed of six inches per turn. Aircraft was staying in cover.
Shooting was very disappointing for my opponent: canon fell short, organ gun only scored one wound on the bolt thrower on the hill and rangers did not inflict a wound to the dark riders.

Lost Colony, Turn 1


Image

Harpies went for the cannon, shades prepared to lend aid should it be necessary. Spearmen advanced to get the sorceresses in range for their spells. I had thought a bit if I it was really that clever to leave cover with the pegasus characters; but I reasoned hiding behind the hill for too long would have been boring and the organ gun was not going to do anything significant to the warded ones, anyway; and the cannon was under hard pressure. I admit, it was a risk.
In magic, flock of doom did nothing but then my opponent failed to dispel chain lightning (cast with four, dispelled with six). I rolled well for bouncing, not that superbly for wounding; in the end I inflicted two wounds on the bomber, one on the first gyrocopter and one on the canon, killed one longbeard and destroyed the second gyrocopter and an organ gun. Quite a success in the end.
My shooters were slowly thinning down the ranks of dwarfs but I do not remember exact numbers.

Dwarfs, Turn 2

Image

The army advanced, flyers were staying in cover.
Rangers accomplished nothing with their shots. The cannon, however, was now able to destroy the western bolt thrower. Then my spearmen failed their panic test (on 9 without reroll) and left the board. It was quite unlucky, rolling high for both leadership and flight; but I really should have kept them further away.

Lost Colony, Turn 2

Image

I did not give up! Harpies charged the cannon; I doubted they could kill it but it was quite sure they would not run away, rendering the machine useless for the next dwarven round. Then I started to prepare encirclements: executioners could now march up the field and pegasus heroes did not have to hide anymore. The plan was first to get the remaining fliers with some pegasus charges and then maybe throw as much as possible against one of the infantry regiments, hopefully wiping it out before help would come.
Some dwarves died to shooting. Second member of the cannon crew died, the last one did not manage to kill a harpy but held on stubborn.

Dwarfs, Turn 3

Image

Hammerers charged the dark riders who fled. The western longbeard regiment supported their brethren, the eastern one, being blocked in advancement, turned to the east. Aircraft was still hiding, trying to deny my pegasus characters opportunities to land in base contact with them but without success.
In combat, the cannon was destroyed.
What I only see now is that the flyers could have destroyed the shades and then either assumed a similar position to the one depicted or hid behind the hill and joined the main force the turn after.

Lost Colony, Turn 3

Image

First thing I charged both dwarven fliers with my BSB (via redirection) and they have turned to flee.
What I should have done next was to position my dreadlord and potion of strength master one inch behind each of the machines (so that each helicopter would be between my master and the nearest board edge). Then I would have been able to destroy them in the following turn in a very safe way.
Instead, I let a spectator convince me to chase the helicopters out of the board right away with more charges. However, as my units were mostly quite near to the board edge the new flee paths were parallel with the board edge most of the time and the aircraft was not nearing it at much velocity. In the end, the gyrocopter left the board but the bomber was still remaining on the table.
More importantly, I decided to let my dreadlord and potion of strength master attack the hand weapon wielding longbeards through a redirection. I am not sure if I can blame a spectator for this, too, but it was not very clever as two pegasus characters are surely not enough to wipe out twenty dwarfs in a swift manner. In the end, only the dreadlord made it while the other charge fell short.
As my BSB was now dangerously close to the hammerers I screened her with fast cavalry. Then I moved up the witch elves; I am not sure what the reasoning behind this was, I hoped they would either lead the western longbeards away or help with some multiple charge against hammerers.
The dreadlord only inflicted one wound (there was no challenge issued) and lost combat but stuck there.

Dwarves, Turn 4


Image

Hammerers chased both dark rider units away, longbeards charged my witch elves. The bomber rallied.
The witch elf combat was quite lucky as from the nine wounds the girls had inflicted, only two were saved on 4+. Then six of the girls died, meaning I lost the combat by one. The witches held position.
The dreadlord was not so lucky and suffered two wounds, though.

Lost Colony, Turn 4


Image

Having forgotten the longbeards actually had a champion I charged them with my BSB. I hoped I would be able to kill them off before hammerers would join the party. Then, in a futile effort to save the dreadlord, I charged the PoS master into the eastern longbeards.
One of the dark rider units failed to rally despite the BSB waving her flag nearby. Therefore I had to lead the hammerers away with harpies. Executioners closed hoping for a good hammertime, shades and dark riders shot at hammerers. The gyrobomber was forgotten, sadly.
In combat, my BSB squished the champion in a challenge, witch elves killed a few more dwarves before dying and dreadlord failed his last armour save.


Dwarves, Turn 5


Image

Hammerers charged harpies who died bravely. Gyrobomber flew over shades and annihilated them.
The runesmith in the unit on the east called a challenge in which neither of the heroes was wounded.
The great weapon wielding longbeards did not scratch the BSB and only five of them were remaining but they were still refusing to run.


Lost Colony, Turn 5

Image

My master drank his potion of strength.
Knowing I was quite a few points behind and the combats were not looking favourable I decided to attack hammerers with executioners. Both of the charges fell short, however.
My shooters finally managed to get rid of the gyrobomber.
On the east, my master, imbued with enormous strength through alchemy, easily squished the runesmith. The nearby dwarves started to shout this was unfair and dishonourable and prepared to fight more.
On the west, two longbeards were still stubbornly fighting.
If you are wondering why I did not sacrifice the dark riders to block the hammerer charge against my BSB, so am I.

Dwarves, Turn 6


Image

Hammerers charged my BSB. He was able to kill the last two longbeards before succumbing to the attacks of the dwarf lord.
Nothing interesting otherwise.

Lost Colony, Turn 6


Image

Every available troop attacked the hammerers in a last attempt to turn the battle. It was unlikely the stubborn hammerers would flee but you never know. I was able to kill the dwarven BSB but in the end, I lost the combat by one. Still, by not losing a unit and killing this pricey character I probably earned a point or two right there.
As a last stunt of the game, my potion of strength master lost combat and fled and then the swift and noble pegasus was caught by a bunch of short-legged stunties.

In the end, as I have received half the points for the hand-weapon wielding longbeards, too, it was a 14:6 loss.


After-battle thoughts


In a short summary, while I am not happy with how I played I am extremely pleased with the army itself.
I have already talked about the deployment of spearmen. I am not sure if it really was crucial to cast at the artillery from turn one – it certainly helped – but staying far from units that are bound to get destroyed by a cannonball is usually smart.
My second mistake was that I fought on the whole battle line. That way I got locked in grinds I was unable to win. I should have not charged the eastern longbeards with two characters alone; I should have either marched an executioner unit to their aid or avoid them completely as they were separated from the rest of the dwarves anyway. I should have probably avoided committing my BSB to the other combat, too.
Which brings me to the other observation: this army can be ruined by challenging champions. I will have to kill them whenever there is the chance.
What I am impressed is that even with the serious mistakes mentioned, even without any magic support the army performed well and the margin of my loss was not that huge. A unit of longbeards was destroyed with witches, BSB and a bit of preparatory shooting. I killed the BSB with six executioner attacks. Some of this might be luck but even after losing 600 points worth of magic users and spearmen it seems to me I had the tools to win. It leaves me with the impression that had I played better the dwarves would get totally smashed. I am definitely looking forward to play this list more.

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Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:20 pm
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Killed by Khorne
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What reason would anyone have to hate Dark Elves? :lol:

Quote:
Master BSB, pegasus, great weapon, 4++ talisman, dragonbane gem: 211


If as reported then this is an illegal double talisman build!

Enjoyed the battle and the write up. You've pretty much made all the points of note yourself. I like the list as well, but your combo-charges need to be cataclysmic to break key units, and in this game you took on too much without adequate support. As you say, with more focus you could have broken this Dwarf army.

Looking forward to your future battles with it :)

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Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:50 pm
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T.D. wrote:
This is an illegal double talisman build!


:shock: :oops: :oops: :oops:

Back to the drawing board, then. Thank you very much for pointing out!

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Thu Apr 10, 2014 10:02 pm
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