Sunday, 13 January 2013

First battle for the year: Warhammer in the garage!

Hey folks first blog for the new year.  I've just come back from a pretty extensive tour of the upper North Island of New Zealand so it was quite nice to get my first game of Warhammer for the year.
My opponent is my good friend Henry Poor playing Empire, against my undead scourge in Warhammer Valhalla (my garage).

My list is a bit of a departure from my NZ Masters list, no bus, ghouls and Vamp lord on foot.  Still sticking with the two Varghulfs as I think they are awesome and totally under-rated and not a fan of the terrorgheists.  List as follows....
Lord on foot with great weapon, master of the black arts dread knight, beguile, 4+ ward, other tricksters shard, glittering scales, sceptre of stability, level 4 vamp caster
Thrall on foot level 2 beasts power stone, forbidden.
Thrall on foot level 2 beasts power scroll, forbidden.
Thrall on foot level 2 vamps, dark acolyte.
40 ghouls + champ.
40 zombies plus standard.
20 zombies plus standard.
3 fell bats.
2 fell bats.
2 varghulfs.
5 Cairn Wraiths (unit).
Henry was fielding a level 4 light, level 2 light, Arch lector (lord) on altar with van horstmanns and a 4+ ward, 35 greatswords (GS's), a bunch of skirmish archers, 20 xbows, bsb on foot, steamtank, cannon and 5 demigryphs

I ended up winning first turn (even though Henry finished deploying first - I used to hate that as an Empire player!)
Photo taken on my first turn just after the magic phase.  Behind the forest to the left is the horde of greatswords.
For my first turn I basically pushed forwards, making sure my cairn wraiths were going to come within striking distance of the demigryphs sooner rather than later.  The big (freshly boosted in numbers from my magic) zombie horde shuffled towards the greatswords with the plan that they would tie them up for long enough so my lord and the ghouls could do the business on the rest of Henry's army.  The varghulf to my left was given the unenviable mission of tying up the steamtank, and the one to the right was lined up to take out the xbows and cannon, then to hopefully circle around later and kill the two wizards in the 10 man archer bunker.  My magic phase was blocked by a judicious use of dispel dice by Henry (aiming for a wind of death and a curse of years on the GS's), however, as aforementioned I manged to get off a couple of invocations boosting the zombie horde to over 50.  I also miscast WoD first up wounding all my vamps bar one and losing some dice in the process!  WoD managed to go only a paltry 6 inches towards its target!
In Henry's turn he declared no charges, I blocked his banishments aimed at my wraiths but he managed to get two cannon shots on my left vargulf, but "huzzah!" I made both my regen saves!

Turn 2
Turn 2: Varghulf fails charge on the steamtank (on double 1's!), and the zombie horde moves up to block the GS's from charging the ghouls left flank.

Turn 2: Just before the wraiths move even closer to the vulnerable gryphs
In turn 2 my living dead shuffled even closer, all of them in prime positions to charge next turn.  However my varghulf failed his charge against the steam tank, which was annoying as Henry could have possibly got a double charge off against my zombies wiping them out in one turn, leaving my ghouls and lord in a precarious position.  I moved a thrall with beasts into the zombie horde cast Transformation on him, turning him into a black hydra...hopefully Henry wouldn't dispel and he could chomp his way through a few greatswords!  I miscast again with some other inconsequential spell and lost some more dice!  I flamed the great swords infront of the newly transormed hydra wizard, hitting 12 but killing only three.
In Henry's turn 2 he chose not to double charge the zombie horde...instead he shot at the hydra with both cannons, hitting twice again and I failed both my regen saves this time, killing the hydra with the second shot!  He also moved up 2 units of 5 skirmishing archers, blocking my lord and the ghouls and he then proceeded to back up the demgryphs after realising they were in imminent danger!  Once again I blocked all his magic, expending my dispel scroll in the process.  He managed to shoot off the unit of 3 fellbats with his combined bow fire other than that another quiet turn.

Turn 3
Varghulf makes it into the xbowmen with the cannon behind.

Wraiths spell doom for the demigryphs with no magic attacks.

Fell Bats move in to block the arch lector from charging next turn!

Varghulf finally gets his charge - only manages to scratch a tag in the tanks paintwork...

Magic phase was a non-event for me, my lord and his ghouls charged off the 2 archer detachments (with a redirect) and powered forward 4 or so inches for the failed charge.  The Wraiths did a couple of wounds to the demigryphs winning combat, however the grphs failed their steadfast Ld test and fled the fight, my wraiths pursued 12 inches running them down!  During the game none of my Varghulfs could get more than 3 hits (even with hatred), and this became more evident when the other vargulf only managed to kill 5 cross bowmen (with a thunderstomp too), however luck wasn't on Henry's side and he failed another steadfast fleeing from combat to only be run down by the vargulf, which in turn overran into the cannon!
In Henry's turn 3 the GS's charged the zombie horde, killing 18 and crumbling 18 more.  This left 15 or so brain-hungry zombies clawing away at them.  The Halberdiers charged the ghouls, and managed to win the combat by only one, with an equal number on both sides dying.  The Altar charged the bats killing them.  Henry had actually cleverly lined up an overrun into my ghoul unit, but he failed this (needed a 9 inch overrun).  This may have changed the game here as my lord had to challenge and the Arch lector had Van Hortmanns speculum!  The battle between the vargulf and the tank continued with not much happening from either party. My other vargulf Von Jaykus failed to kill the cannon in Henry's turn three, crucially holding him up for another turn!

Turn 3 action!
The wraiths after a 12 inch overrun are far from the action and slow outside their generals Ld bubble

Von Jaykus mauling xbowmen!


Turn 4

Henry's turn 4: a challenge ensues

Zombies hold on to tie the GS's up for another round of combat

In my turn four magic was once again uneventful....just really raising up more ghouls that died from the previous combat, and pumping up the surrounding zombie units even more, plus healing my characters.  My lord killed the Henry's BSB in a challenge and the ghouls decimated the halberdiers (8 poison hits alone with van hels re-rolls) wiping out all the halberdiers, but they could not reform to get out of the charge path of the Arch lector!  The varghulf against the tank flailed away doing nothing, and the one against the cannon managed to finish it off, but he really needed to have charged the Arch lector this turn as he had the dreaded van hortmanns speculum ( the bane of every powerful character!).  The last of the zombies died against the GS's, but I reformed the now rather large zombie bunker into a two wide conga to block the GS's again for the following turn!
Henry's turn four he charged the War Altar in to my lord and his ghouls and I issued my challenge (due to dread knight) he managed to do 2 wounds on me with our swapped stats (even with the glittering scales he was hitting me on 4+) and I did one wound on him.  He won combat by only 1 as he only did 1 impact hit....not that it mattered as I had about 30+ ghouls still left.

Turn 5

It really just came down to the duel between our lords, Henry killing my vamp would secure him a minor victory, death would leave him and the ghouls plus the varghulfs to run rampant.
In my magic phase I managed to get quite a few spells off, trying to wind of death the Arch lector and the wizard lord in one swoop, however I rolled a misfire and plonked it on the vamps head scattering and hitting both the ghouls and the Lector - resulting in 4 dead ghouls and one wound to the altar.  However after a few more spells I manged to heal my lord back up to full strength using the lore attribute.
So.....in the combat the Lector went first as he had ASF from a spell, doing 3 wounds....this could be game over, all I had was my ward save to protect me.....I rolled 2 saves!  Phew!I did another wound back to the Lector winning combat well.  However he was still Stubborn due to the Altar....the Ld test was rolled....the dice scattered onto the table...........an elven!  The lector turned tail and fled a paltry 6 inches and the ghouls swarmed up and over him at the command of their Master!
The Lector flees!
We decided to call the game at that point as there was nothing that could really check the rest of my army, so it would have been quite a one-sided affair.  So a win in the end.
All-in-all a really good game with a tense finish and quite cool having another photographer from a leading NZ magazine taking photographs of us and the garage...added a bit of occasion to the day!

I finished the evening with a game of Hero Quest...now my Hero Quest group knows the power of the Witchlord!  He definitely owns a wallet that says "badass mother-fucker".

Thanks for reading folks, it's been a pleasure to share this fun day with you.

Rory

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