Sunday, 16 October 2011

Duelling Paintbrushes: The halfway face-off

The weekend marked the halfway point in our Duelling Paintbrushes challenge. Owen issued a challenge of his own - a 2500pt game including whatever we had completed of the stuff we were painting in our duel. I took a number of pictures during the game - not enough to merit a full-blown battle report, but I figured I would put up what I had.

The Empire
Arch Lector on barded steed (enormous doggy) with Mace of Helstrum, Dawn Armour, shield
Wizard Lord (Level 4) with Lore of Shadow, Holy Relic
Captain on barded steed with Battle Standard, Charmed Shield, Talisman of Endurance, full plate armour
Warrior Priest with Armour of Meteoric Iron, great weapon
40 Spearmen with standard bearer and musician
40 Halberdiers with full command, detachment of 15 Halberdiers (my Kislevites)
30 Greatswords with full command
16 Inner Circle Knights with full command, great weapons
28 Flagellants
Great Cannon

Yes, the Kislevites got pressed into service as a Halberdier detachment. There were not any really ideal roles for them, and this did mean that I didn't use any of the command models I had painted, but it was an adequate fit.

Nurgley Warriors of Chaos
Chaos Lord with the Mark of Nurgle on a barded steed (Chaos slug) with Chaos Runesword, Armour of Damnation, chaos armour, shield
Exalted Hero with the Mark of Nurgle, Battle Standard, Banner of Rage, chaos armour, great weapon
Sorcerer (Level 2) with the Mark of Nurgle, Infernal Muppet, Dispel Scroll (yes, this is cheating for at least 2 reasons. Oh well)
30 Chaos Warriors with full command, Mark of Nurgle, shields
32 Marauders with full command, Mark of Khorne, great weapons
10 Chaos Knights (on icky slugs) with full command, Mark of Nurgle, Festering Shroud
10 Chaos Knights (on big flies whose wings appear to have been plucked) with full command, Mark of Nurgle
3 Dragon Ogres with great weapons

Owen very rarely gets around to actually playing Warhammer, and his army list was a bit under-strength as a result. It didn't help that he doesn't have a copy of the rulebook, thus denying him about 50 magic items to choose from. He didn't mention this until later, of course. Rules are indeed for the weak, but magic items are for the prepared...

The Battle
The scenario turned out to be Dawn Attack, and the dice dictated that I would set up first. I ended up with my Spearmen (including my Wizard Lord) on my right flank, with the Knights (with Arch Lector and BSB) next to them, followed by the Greatswords. Next to them was the Kislev Halberdier detachment, then their parent unit of Halberdiers. The Flagellants were on the end of the line, with the Cannon perched on a hill next to them, and the Mortar on the ground behind them and the Halberdiers.

Once this was all done, Owen rolled up his deployment. The Warriors (including BSB and Sorcerer) were on his left flank (facing my Spearmen). On the hill next to them were the Fly Knights. Down in the centre were the other Knights, accompanied by the Chaos Lord. To their right were the horde of very angry Marauders, with the line completed by the Dragon Ogres.

Turn 1
The Empire moved first, striding manfully toward their fearsome opponents. The only ones who did not move forward at full speed were the White Wolf Knights, who decided that being charged by half the Chaos army at once was not a price worth paying for looking manly. They shuffled forward nervously. The Kislevites walked straight into the forest in front of them, which proved to be a Fungus Forest, making them and their parent unit subject to Stupidity. Stupid mushrooms. The Cannon fired at the Dragon Ogres, who looked likely to be bearing down on it in later turns. The shot hit a Dragon Ogre, but merely succeeded in sheering the ear off one of them. The Mortar aimed at the Marauders and landed close to on target, killing a few and further wounding the Dragon Ogre nearby.

The Empire Wizard Lord attempted to cast Mystifying Miasma on the Chaos Warriors to slow them down, however the Chaos Sorcerer babbled hysterically about tripping over and chose to waste his Dispel Scroll immediately, rather than tapping into his pile of 5 dispel dice (which then remained unused). Must have had traumatic childhood memories or something. Or perhaps he was keen to remove the incriminating evidence of his carrying 2 Arcane Items and having spent 60 of his 50 available points on loot.
The Kislevite Halberdiers line up next to their parent unit, in front of a cobweb-ridden tree.
Here they come...
How my army looked, all lined up.
Those sinister mans who got painted so ludicrously quickly. Note that their bases were not yet painted, thus giving me the obvious advantage.

The Chaos legions commenced the battle by declaring every charge possible, however optimistic they may have seemed. This apparently sound tactic saw the Slug Knights plow straight across the field and into the front of the Halberdiers, who chose to drool as a charge reaction (an option afforded them by their consumption of stupid mushrooms). The detachment wanted in on this crazy drooling action, and rushed into the flank of the icky Slug Knights, mushrooms and halberds at the ready. The Fly Knights proved to be slower than the Slugs (this makes little sense to me, but the dice say it is so), and failed to make it to the Greatswords.
The Halberdiers receive the charge from the Slug Knights, led by evil overlord on the corner (the little guy in black with the green ball - I don't know who made him boss. I can only assume he is more dangerous than he looks). The detachment got excited about the opportunity to execute a supporting charge, and duly arrived in the flank.
Into the flank we go...
The Fly Knights fail abysmally in their charge attempt and are promptly outpaced by the Warriors on the flank.

The Warriors eye off the Empire lines.
Having embarrassed himself by panicking in the first magic phase, the Chaos Sorcerer clearly felt obliged to redeem himself. In a dazzling display of power, he cast Rot, Glorious Rot irresistibly. A number of Spearmen, Knights and Greatswords keeled over, however the overzealous use of sorcerous power also consumed several Chaos Warriors who were standing too close to the evil magician.

In the centre of the lines, the Chaos Lord was revealed to be Lord McWailsondetachment, a cowardly cur who chose to start butchering the Kislevites in his flank and ignore the mass of Halberdiers to his front (we both forgot he had to issue a challenge that turn). This was perhaps understandable, as his Knightly companions proceeded to tear great holes in the parent unit, for the loss of only a couple of Knights in return. Despite the one-sided carnage, the Halberdiers were either secure in their strength in numbers, or perhaps too absorbed in their consumption of silly mushrooms, and held firm.

Turn 2
The next turn was one of bitterness and wrath, in which my lazy efforts at photography were all but forgotten. Sorry about that. My position as Lazy War Correspondent is surely in peril.

Anyway, the Flagellants excitedly ploughed into the unengaged flank of the Slug Knights, who were starting to look a little surrounded. On the right, the Empire Knights charged into the waiting Chaos Warriors, however the efforts of both the Greatswords and the Spearmen to support the charge fell just short.

The magic phase saw the Chaos Sorcerer rue his wasteful use of his Dispel Scroll, as the Empire Wizard cast the Enfeebling Foe on the Chaos Warriors, dropping them to Strength 1. In their newly limp-wristed state, they were unlikely to threaten anyone let alone the fully armoured Knights they were facing. In a dazzling display of gunnery, both the Cannon and Mortar then misfired, so it was on to combat.

The Chaos Warriors were indeed as feeble as their loss of Strength would suggest, and hurt nobody as they flapped about ineffectually. The Knights showed no such weakness, crushing half a dozen of the Warriors. At the forefront was the Arch Lector, who accepted the challenge of the Chaos Battle Standard Bearer and mashed him to a paste with 6 wounds from the Mace of Helstrum. The Warriors had been thrashed and turned to flee, only to be run down by the cavalry in a burst of speed that put them beyond the field of vision of the waiting Chaos Fly Knights.

In the centre, Lord McWailsondetachment overcame his momentary lapse and issued a challenge, which was accepted by the Warrior Priest in the Halberdiers. The challenge was brief as the Lord quickly dispatched this unwelcome interruption to his wailing on detachments. The Flagellants arrived in the flank in a storm of bitching, complaining, and declarations of impending doom. However, they were apparently more interested in making noise than killing stuff, and only brought down 2 Knights. Meanwhile the Knights continued their glorious slaughter of the Halberdiers, who realised they had left something in the oven and left hurriedly to deal with it. However, the detachment remained, confident in their mushroom-induced state of euphoria.

The Chaos turn saw the Dragon Ogres try and fail to charge the annoying Cannon on the hill. Next to them, the Marauders saw the juicy, juicy rear of the Flagellants and declared a charge before tripping over their own feet and going nowhere fast. Or perhaps they were slipping on their untextured bases. Ha! Fortune favours the based.
A wonderful rear charge foiled by slippery bases. Curses!
Close, but no cigar: The charge of the Dragon Ogres fell short by 1".
The Fly Knights made up for their earlier efforts by charging the Greatswords. They cut a swathe through the enemy as they crashed in, and barely slowed as the courage of the elite infantry deserted them and they fled, run down ignominiously.

The Fly Knights look smug atop the hill in the Empire deployment zone. One will note a lack of Greatswords, largely due to their not being there anymore.
Now that there were no annoying characters in the way, Lord McWailsondetachment was able to get on with the serious business of slaughtering the Kislev detachment. However, his fellow knights were felled as the now less-than-lethal Flagellants put away their flails and instead discovered that Chaos Knight armour is vulnerable to a well-placed spoon. Spoons at the ready, they fell upon the unfortunate Knights, dragging all but one from their slimy slug saddles.
The Flagellants savage the Chaos Knights with brutal spoon-work, even as the detachment starts to look a little thin.
However the triumph of frenzied spoons is missed by the Halberdiers, who were still on their way to check on that oven.
The respective Knight units go for the old switcheroo, occupying each other's deployment zone.

Turn 3
The Empire turn commenced with the Spearmen and Knights making swift reforms and surging up behind the Fly Knights, who were too busy gloating about the Greatswords to care much. The Halberdiers considered rallying and fighting like they were paid to do, however the thought of whatever they had left in the oven was just too worrying, and they continued their departure.

The Cannon made a last-ditch attempt at self-preservation and obliterated a Dragon Ogre with a well-placed shot, however the other two seemed unconcerned. The Mortar spotted something I hadn't seen (possibly a bunny or a very large ant) and fired at that instead of what I told it to (it scattered a long way). The Wizard attempted to boost the chances of the Flagellants with Okkam's Mindrazor, however the spell fizzled thanks to the winds of magic blowing feebly.

Lord McWailsondetachment continued his brutal work, whilst the remaining Knight next to him clued onto why the Flagellants were advancing toward him with spoons at the ready, and managed to protect whatever vulnerability had undone his comrades. Reduced to a mere 3 models, the detachment finally decided it was time to leave, and abandoned the Flagellants to their fate.
Our work here is finished.
In true Chaos fashion, their turn commenced with everything not already in combat declaring a charge. The Dragon Ogres surged into the unfortunate Cannon and the Marauders repeated their attempt to charge the Flagellants in the rear - this time successfully. The Fly Knights spotted the Halberdiers who were off to check on their cooking, and decided to speed them on their way with a charge. The Halberdiers duly left the field, however this left the Fly Knights with their rear perilously exposed to the forces returning from the Empire flank.
The Dragon Ogres arrive to avenge their fallen comrade.
The Fly Knights leave too little distance between their rear and the enemy.
Caught between a rock and a hard place, the Flagellants are proven right about The End being near...

The Dragon Ogres made short work of the Cannon and immediately began to eye off the Mortar hungrily. Meanwhile, Lord McWailsondetachment found himself having to fight a proper unit again. Despite it not being his true calling, he slaughtered several Flagellants and sat back to watch the newly arrived Marauders in action. However, the Flagellants themselves had no intention of sitting back. Turning on their assailants, spoons at the ready, they set upon the Marauders in spectacular fashion. Only 9 Flagellants remained, however they still managed to account for 13 Marauders. Alas, it was not enough. The air was filled with gore and very small pieces of Flagellant as they were wiped out in an orgy of bloodletting. Khorne would have been well pleased.
The Chaos forces celebrate their victory as small pieces of Marauder and Flagellant continue to rain down around them.
Turn 4
The remaining Empire forces charged into the rear of the Fly Knights, intent upon avenging the rather disappointing Greatswords who had "fought so valiantly" (you don't speak ill of the dead, I'm told). The detachment continued to flee, however they were going nowhere fast - perhaps they were still addled from the mushrooms.

In a particularly feeble magic phase, the Empire Wizard could not summon the power to cast Okkam's Mindrazor, meaning the Spearmen would be left poking ineffectually at the rear of the Chaos Knights. The Mortar spotted an opportunity for glory and targeted the Chaos Lord, however their ambition was in no way matched by their skill and the shot did its best to miss the table entirely.

In combat, the Chaos Knight champion issued a challenge as he shouldered his way through to the rear of the unit. He was met by the Mace of Helstrum, and wound up flat as a pancake. His comrades fared a little better, however they were still thrashed in combat and were run down as they turned to flee.
The Fly Knights are charged in the rear by the remains of the enemy army.
The Chaos Lord and his remaining loyal Slug Knight declared a charge and slithered into combat with the Empire Knights, however the Marauders found themselves too far away to follow suit. The Dragon Ogres carried on into the Mortar and made short work of the crew.
The Mortar meets its fate, surrounded by the ghosts of the Empire dead.
As heroic as the Chaos Lord's charge was, it proved ill-advised. In a dazzling display of swordsmanship, he completely out-fought the Arch Lector in their challenge, however the Empire general's armour proved too strong, and he was barely wounded. In return the Mace of Helstrum appeared to have run out of batteries and instead made a feeble squeaking noise when the Chaos Lord was whacked on the head with it. The Chaos Knight who had accompanied the Lord into combat did not fare as well, and was cut down by the Inner Circle Knights. Finding himself alone and outnumbered, the Chaos Lord turned to flee. Unfortunately his slug was tired and could not out-distance the pursuing cavalry, so the Lord was cut down as he fled.
The Chaos Lord assaults the Empire Knights, despite their superior position atop a colossal die. The Kislev detachment pays no heed and continues its departure in the background.
Turn 5
The end was nigh. The Empire Knights charged the Dragon Ogres, intent on making them pay for what they did to the rather useless Mortar. Meanwhile the Spearmen advanced toward the Marauders - the last of the Chaos forces.

The Wizard Lord finally found enough power to cast a spell, and promptly cast Okkam's Mindrazor irresistibly on the Spearmen. The power singed his hair, however his Holy Relic prevented him from coming to any real harm.

The Knights made short work of the Dragon Ogres, although the Arch Lector was still checking the batteries of his Mace and was not able to contribute himself. The regiment then swung around to witness the final act of the battle.

Howling for blood, skulls, and other tasty tidbits, the Khorne Marauders crashed headlong into the Spearmen. Unfortunately they were met with a wall of spears, each wielded with the strength of 10 men. The Marauders were slaughtered without striking a blow, and the threat to wherever we were was ended. Unless we were in Chaos land, in which case the occupants were now in trouble...
The final act: The Khorne Marauders charge headlong into a wall of Strength 7 spears...


  1. You see, just as your cheating will not help you, my cheating failed to help me. It would appear we have reached a cheating impasse.

  2. Perhaps we need to cheat harder. You know how it goes: harder faster, stronger, more blatantly...

  3. Hello! I know this is kinda off topic nevertheless I'd figured I'd ask. Would you be interested in exchanging links or maybe guest authoring a blog post or vice-versa? My site addresses a lot of the same subjects as yours and I feel we could greatly benefit from each other. If you might be interested feel free to shoot me an e-mail. I look forward to hearing from you! Terrific blog by the way! Here is my page -
    corporate entertainment melbourne