Sunday, 6 April 2014

The Battle of the Bacon, Part 6 (Finale)

This is the 6th (and final) part of a battle report spanning multiple posts. You can read the previous turn here, or you can go to the main report page here.

Dwarf Turn 6
Dwarf Turn 6
With more a wheezing cough than a shout, Lord Dungrim signalled to the shieldbearers fighting by his side and together they dragged themselves into the flank of the Savage Orc Shaman, intent on putting an end to the villain before their own strength gave out entirely.
Dungrim charges in for the final combat
Arri's Hairy Men make a final push to deal with the Savage Orcs, whilst Snorri decides his Gyrocopter is not in ideal shape to be charging Orcs who are facing him with obvious evil intent.
Over on the right flank, Arri's Hairy Men were in much better shape and charged down the hill with a chorus of shouts into the waiting Red Faces. This time neither side seemed intent on defence, and four warriors fell on either side in a flurry of blows. The Dwarfs had the advantage of momentum and their banner still flew proudly overhead, and the Savage Orcs no longer had the stomach for the fight. They turned and ran once more, escaping the pursuing Dwarfs as they departed the field and disappeared into the trees beyond.
Da Red Faces break for the final time, this time departing the field (but still outpacing the Dwarfs, which is important)
The Organ Gun roared to life once more, this time riddling one of the Trolls with so many holes that its body was unable to regenerate the damage. The Grudge Thrower was less accurate and the Goblin crew of the Rock Lobber didn't even notice that they were being fired upon.

Half-dead as they were, Little Foot knew that the arrival of Dungrim and his bearers signalled the end. He flung himself forward into the remaining two Iron Guard, however they deftly turned aside his attack and cut him down with their blood-soaked axes. The Shaman's demise may have distracted Gorgor, for a moment later he too had been hacked him the saddle, Thori Sidesplitter's axe all but cutting him in twain.
Little Foot and Gorgor fall, leaving the greenskins leaderless. That's it, right? Trolls left to their own devices can't do anything, right?

Orc and Goblin Turn 6
Orc and Goblin Turn 6
Ya whaaaaat? Now you decide to pass your stupidity tests?
The contest was over, however some parties took a while to get the message. Despite the demise of their general, the Trolls on the hill had a sudden bout of inspiration and surged forward into the Organ Gun, whose crew could only watch in stunned dismay. With great sweeping blows the Trolls crushed the Dwarfs where they stood before picking up the machine and fighting over it like a couple of toddlers arguing over a prized toy.
Ow, that hurt
You're next!

The other Trolls continued to flee despite the fact that they were now in a different location and facing a different direction from a matter of moments earlier (they really are pretty thick, Trolls).

Seeing their chance at glory and envisaging immediate promotions to Warboss, the Goblin crew of the Rock Lobber took aim once more at the Dwarf Lord and his battered companions. The firer was so wrapped up in visions of his imminent glory that he failed to check that his companion was clear of the machine before dropping the lever. The shot flew off with a whistle and an unholy shriek as the Goblin still clinging to the rock disappeared into the distance, wildly off-target as a result of this less than ideal ammunition. The remaining Goblins could only face-palm before the noticed the remaining Dwarfs looking their way. They quickly abandoned their machine and slunk into the forests, dreams of glory overwhelmed by a healthy sense of self-preservation.


In the end, the table looks a little bare.


Final Victory Points:
Dwarfs: 1908
Orcs and Goblins: 769

Aftermath

A Costly Victory
The Dwarf survivors, such as they are. The Lord has taken 3 wounds and that Gyrocopter has lost 2.
Greg/Hoodling: Well that was an interesting game. I thought it was going to be a complete walkover in favour of the Orcs and Goblins after the first couple of turns, when I had already lost my most powerful unit, there were enemy units in my back line, and my shooting looked like it wasn't going to contribute at all. Then things swung back in my favour, thanks largely to the combat involving my heroic Gyrocopter which allowed a counter-charge that led to a series of favourable fights.

By my standards, I was pretty lucky in this game. The most notable effort was the Warriors stone-walling the charging Savage Orcs (for all that my return attacks were abysmal – that really didn't matter). I was also fortunate that my Lord wasn't killed outright by the Rock Lobber, although the odds were slightly in my favour thanks to him having 5 wounds because of the Shieldbearers. Elmo also had some pretty good rolls, including his insistence on casting spells irresistibly, but at least he lost Foot of Gork on the second casting, and only one of them had landed on target. His warpaint rolls were pretty phenomenal throughout the game, but that wasn't really significant other than it being depressing to watch them shrug off 2 out of every 3 wounds I could inflict with shooting. He also needs the down-sides of Animosity explained to him, since he failed once for the entire game, forcing him to charge when he was going to do that anyway. He did roll poorly at a couple of key moments, like when he forced Fists of Gork through whilst in combat with my Ironbreakers. Had he rolled better to hit, that could have gone very badly.

I actually allowed Hand of Gork to go off in the first turn, saving my dice for Foot (much good that did me). That ultimately cost me the Thunderers, so was probably a mistake. My shooting also lacked focus somewhat, which might have been a reflection of less than ideal deployment as I was still trying to figure out what to do with my army.

In the end the victory points don't reflect how close things were for most of the game. Once the Dwarfs got the upper hand things started to fall apart a bit for the Orcs, as they were suddenly reliant on units like the Trolls to swing things back in their favour and they failed to deliver. As you can see from the picture above, I didn't really have much of an army left at the end. Things like 2 Ironbreakers making it through the game do wonders for your victory point tally. Anyway, it was a victory. Not so sure it was as convincing as the final score would have you believe.

Game Over!
The Orc and Goblin survivors. At least the remnants of a few of the other units made it off the table. I guess they lived too, but didn't bother to hang around for the family portrait at the end.
Nick/Elmo: The Dwarfs had come back from a bad start to score a win. Although the Hoodling was frustrated with the first few turns due to some lucky save rolls and the complete and utter desolation of the hammerers, the game turned out to be as close as you could hope for a battle report. There were times when I was frustrated with both some abysmal rolling on my behalf and some above average on the Hoodling. The round of combat where the charging Savage Orcs managed one unsaved wound against the Warriors was very disappointing. Another instance was when one of the Gyrocoptors surviving a charge from the other unit of Savages. However, during the game, the Dice Gods couldn't seem to decide who to favour: The Mangler deleting the second half of the Hammerers on turn two, took quite a bit of bogus rolling by me.

In terms of the effectiveness of the list, I am quite happy with every element of the list except the silly rock lobber that self destructed. Maybe next time I would only take a single Rock Lobber and replace the second with an Orc Boar Chariot to support the infantry units. In terms of the size of the game, I enjoyed the change from the usual tournament sized games that take place weekly at the club. I feel it made the game much more interesting and reduced the number of tricks that could be included in the armies. It would have been really rude to have a second Mangler in the game.

Oh Well, Little Foot will get his revenge someday!

Epilogue

The battered remnants of the Dwarf army trudged slowly back up the ancient road toward the mountains and Karak Hirn. Lord Dungrim led their weary column, limping slightly as he walked on his own two feet. Immediately behind him were his shieldbearers. Though they were no longer burdened by the weight of their leader, their own injuries were sufficient that the slow march (which was dreadfully slow by the normally relentless standards of Dwarf armies) was about as fast as they could manage, and they were not alone.

All up the column, Dwarfs were wrapped in bandages, limping or being carried by their comrades. More than two-thirds of Dungrim's Guard had died on the field, and most of the remainder would never take the field again. The Iron Guard had fared little better, although with time to recover, more than half of them might return to active duty defending the lower halls of the Hold. Old Peg Leg, already missing an eye and a foot, was in better shape than many of his Quarrellers. And this was more than could be said for the Thunderers, only one of whom was able to march on his own.

At the rear of the column came the baggage ponies, many of which were now being used to pull litters for the wounded. Upon one of these litters sat a pair of wounded warriors from Arri's Hairy Men. Both were too battered to walk, however they (like all in their regiment) were in better spirits than most of the army. More than half the warriors in their unit could still walk, which was a feat unmatched by any other formation in the column. Though the toll of the battle on the Dwarfs had been grim, Arri's lads had fought heroically and were rightly proud. The wounded Dwarfs exchanged stories and laughed (in a tempered fashion, given that unrestrained mirth would endanger their roughly stitched wounds), each one waving a flagon of “medicinal” ale in one hand, and a haunch of roasted pork in the other.

In fact, those baggage ponies not pulling wounded Dwarfs were now laden to the point of collapse with enormous roasted pigs. If the human farmers ever returned to their farmstead, they would find the building more or less intact, but their livestock gone. The Dwarfs had assured one another that this was simply a matter of pragmatism – having fled in the face of an Orc war band, the farmers were unlikely to hasten back to their homes in time to save their animals. This way they would not go to waste, and the Dwarf army did not have to set off on a long march home on empty stomachs.

As the crippled column worked its way slowly home, the rich smells of roasted pork carried on the wind, drifting into the deserted mountain valleys and carrying to the noses and snouts of who-knew-what. In the mountains of the Warhammer world there were far more terrifying foes than simple Orcs to contend with, and the mouth-watering aroma of well-cooked swine might be just the thing to tempt them out of their lairs.


It could be a very long walk home.



That's all folks, thanks for reading!

14 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed this report, although as an Orc player I can't help thinking "We woz robbed!"

    I hardly ever take Boar Boyz (of either variety) as I don't consider them competitive enough. It was nice to see them in this battle but unfortunately they confirmed my prejudices.

    Anyway, hats off to both generals, that was a great report! Keep them coming...

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    1. I'm afraid nobody ever fields boar boyz of any variety. I think discussions about that might have contributed to Nick using them in this game. If I field Orcs in a tournament in the near future, I will do the same. Sooner or later they will have their time in the sun! Their glory awaits!

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  2. This really is the gold standard of battle reports. If only you worked for White Dwarf! Would love to hear more about how you create the maps, especially the terrain pics. And as another O&G player i have to agree about boar boyz, they are too easy to kill for something that usually strikes last.

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    1. The maps are created with Battle Chronicler, which is free and available online. The terrain used in the map is actual photos of the terrain used in the game, imported into the tool as "components". It's not hard to do - look it up!

      Boar Boyz receive too little love - most Orc armies I see tend to be far too similar to each other, and there are never any piggies. Obviously this is because they are not the optimal choice, but I refuse to believe they can't be made to work...

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  3. Great battle report. Nice to read about a 'non-tournament' battle where you can emphasise the fun and the narrative.

    I hope you're right about the Boar Boyz - I'm due to play a friendly tournament with a O&G list that is pig-heavy (purely because they were the last things I painted). I guess they have to shred whatever they hit in the first round, because they don't have the armour saves that knights can count on.

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    1. I had been thinking their best use was as rank bonus for a gang of tough, affordable Big Bosses. But it's been pointed out that Wolf Riders could do the same thing for fewer points and are Core. So I'm still working out how I am going to make good use of them.

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  4. Im running some savage orc boar boyz with wailing banner. My goal is to disorganise my enemies lines a bit. Also 5k points...

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  5. Took me awhile to get through it, but I really enjoyed your battle report. Keep em coming.

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  6. I have to agree, the battle report was very enjoyable! Top quality. I love the background and humour, it makes Warhammer what it is for me. The pictures and detailed maps give a perfect overview. I love your choice of armies and models as well. A classic and warm feel all around thanks a lot for sharing!

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    1. Thanks Willem, I'm glad you enjoyed it

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  7. Very enjoyable. You took your time to set it up and take pictures and write a good old fashioned battle report. It worked out just as hoped for.

    Thanks.

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    1. Cheers. Yeah, it worked out pretty well in the end.

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  8. That was brilliant (as are you other battle reports)! Thank you so much for sharing the fun.

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  9. I really enjoyed this report. I mainly play 2000 point games so it was nice to see that I'm not the only one out there who still plays games under 5000 points. Kudos to the Dwarfs!

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