Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Moonstruck Aftermath - Part 2

This is part 2 of my report of the recent tournament Moonstruck. You can find part 1 here.

Game 2 - Meeting Engagement deployment
Damien Stallard, Ogre Kingdoms

  • Golgfag Maneater
  • Firebelly (Level 2, Lore of Fire) with Dispel Scroll, Potion of Speed, Additional Hand Weapon
  • Bruiser with Battle Standard, Talisman of Preservation, Enchanted Shield, Heavy Armour, Additional Hand weapon
  • 6 Ogres with Standard, Iron fists
  • 10 Gnoblars with Standard
  • 6 Ironguts with Standard, Standard of Discipline
  • 6 Ironguts with Standard
  • 6 Leadbelchers
  • 6 Maneaters (Stubborn/Swiftstride), 3 with Additional Hand Weapons, Standard, Champion
  • Gorger
  • Sabretusk
  • Sabretusk
  • Sabretusk
  • 3 Mournfangs with Standard, Heavy Armour, Ironfists, Dragonhide Banner
  • Ironblaster

Comp Score: 4

A pretty good score from the first round meant I moved up to Table 4 for the second game (The Dwellers decided to keep the tables ranked, presumably so that they could keep an eye on the naughty people on the top tables). It also turned out I had gone from playing the "best painted" army of the event, to playing the "second-best painted" army. All the eye candy for me!

Damien's army was a far cry from your normal Ogre list. It had nothing really resembling a "gutstar", and was led by a hero-level character in Golgfag Maneater. Golgfag gets to select 2D6x10 points' worth of magic items before each game, which is pretty funny. Unfortunately he had rolled snake eyes in the first round, so he was clearly due something better. Apparently not, as Damien picked up the dice and once again rolled double ones! Of course, he then confessed that he was hanging out for a 10+ so that he could choose the Wizarding Hat, so I'm more than half convinced the dice were just trying to save him from himself. He ended up with the Sword of Striking and Charmed Shield - a far more practical selection than the Hat would have been (I heard that he did indeed get to choose the Wizarding Hat in a later game, so eventually he got to live the dream. I don't know how that worked out for him game-wise though)...
Damien had a beautiful army, but I don't seem to have a lot of good photos of it. Sorry! We ignored the water on the end of the field, as all it would have done was shorten the table.

There were no "scenarios" as such at Moonstruck, however several of the rounds did use the deployment rules from some of the rulebook scenarios. This round was Meeting Engagement. I won the roll-off, which meant I got to choose the corner and had to set up my whole army first, but would get the first turn on anything but the roll of a 6.

In truth, mine is the sort of list that should probably be deployed in more or less the same manner regardless of what the opponent is doing. Alarielle's sphere of influence is pivotal for the army as a whole, so it more or less needs to be deployed around her. So deploying first didn't seem like that big a deal. It would be worth it to get the first turn. So I set up, then Damien set up, then he rolled the dice and it came up 6. He stole my first turn. Booooo!

The Ogre line advanced a bit, as it was a bit far away to be declaring charges (I had deployed a bit back from the 12" line). The Ironblaster lined up Durthu, but then generously rolled a 1 to wound him. The Firebelly tossed a boosted Flamestorm at Alarielle's unit, however it scattered across and ended up hitting the other regiment of Maiden Guard a bit harder. They lost a rank, and couple were also roasted off the end of the original target unit.

In my turn I did what you would expect of any mild-mannered, pacifist tree-loving Elf player. I charged with as much as I reasonably could. Durthu went after the BSB's unit of Ironguts, and I sent the Dryads in alongside. The Ogres were behind an obstacle, but I figured the hatred on both of my units would adequately compensate for the -1 to hit in the first round. I also managed to charge the Mournfangs with the Treekin - it was a reasonable distance and I was relieved to make it. The impact hits from the charging Mournfangs was something I wanted to avoid.
Durthu and the Dryads go in, Skeletons pop up in front of Golgfag's unit, and Alarielle marches straight up into the middle of it all. Balancing on these Realm of Battle boards is a nightmare. The stubby holder sort of almost solved the problem.
Pretty aggressive for turn 1, really.
I was slightly worried that the Mournfang combat wouldn't go my way. The best way to insure against that was to get Alarielle within 12" of the Treekin. Unfortunately that meant marching right up into the face of the advancing Ogre army with my defensive regiment led by my all-important spell-caster. Oh well, what could go wrong? I did manage to raise a unit of Skeletons directly in the path of Golgfag's regiment, which bought me time against the main threat.
In keeping with Alarielle's impetuous advance, the Unicorn mage had to rush up too to put herself in range for the summoning spell.
The Durthu combat didn't really go the way I would have liked. Because Durthu was engaging the corner of the enemy unit, he could only reach the Ogre BSB. I decided he might as well challenge to avoid supporting attacks, and the BSB accepted. Unfortunately the Ogre proved quite adept at 4+ ward saves, and Durthu only ever managed a single wound per turn after saves. At least he was in no real danger in return. The Dryads stuffed up their efforts to support him, and if I won combat in that first round at all, it was barely.

The Treekin combat went better than I could have dreamed. I managed to do 5 wounds after saves (Damien failed nearly all of them on a 3+), and given one of the Mournfangs had taken a wound riding through dangerous terrain, suddenly there was only a single model striking back. He achieved nothing in return, broke and was removed given he was the unit standard bearer. The Treekin then reformed, facing the flank of the Ogre line.

The folly of sending in the Dryads alongside Durthu became apparent when the Firebelly's unit charged into the combat. This went poorly for them, and they broke. They got lucky and escaped pursuit however, ending up on my left flank after running through several of my units. Durthu was left alone fighting against the BSB's unit, 1 wound at a time.
The Dryads (bottom left) manage to escape after getting smashed in combat. Meanwhile the efforts to slow Golgfag only sort of worked.
Golgfag's Ogres charged the Skeletons that had popped up right in front of them, and managed to deal with them (they almost didn't because of the regeneration from Alarielle, which neither of us had even considered. It was somewhat perverse having dead things being protected by rampant life magic). My plan failed slightly when they then managed the 9" overrun they needed to reach my secondary (and somewhat singed) regiment of Maiden Guard.

It would appear that I got absorbed in actually playing for a bit, because there seem to be some gaps in my photos. Sorry about that. I responded to the imminent demise of my Maiden Guard in the only logical way. I sent in more Maiden Guard to keep them company. Alarielle let forth a terrifying, bloodcurdling roar of peace and tranquility, and led the charge into the flank of Golgfag's unit. 
It might have been an even fight, but Flesh to Stone and regeneration pretty much put paid to that.
The Treekin charged the Maneaters, who had been unable to get past Durthu's overhanging base in the other combat (and being in a challenge, there had been no point in charging him). Alarielle gave the Treekin Flesh to Stone, and the proceeded to work their way gradually through the Maneaters whose stubbornness kept them in place as their numbers dwindled.

My Dragon Princes had lost one of their number to Leadbelcher shots, but they realised my line would be in peril if someone didn't pin the Firebelly's unit in place, so they charged into the flank. They won comfortably, but with only 4 models now in the unit, couldn't break the Ogres' steadfast.

The Alarielle charge went better than expected. Regeneration absorbed the worst of the Ogres' attacks, and the nobles fighting alongside Alarielle helped swing things well in my favour by doing some damage. I think Golgfag ended up testing on about leadership 3, broke, and was run down by the rescued unit of Maiden Guard.
Impressively, this was not enough to break the Dragon Princes.
Most of the Ogres were in combat by this point, especially after the Leadbelchers charged into the flank of the Dragon Princes. The Ironblaster celebrated its status as the only unengaged unit by misfiring its cannon, leaving it an unarmed chariot. Clearly it was a show of intent. The thing had been hopeless anyway - rolling 1 to wound twice and now crippling itself.
Grind, grind, grind. Durthu and the Treekin do their best impression of an impenetrable wall.
The Dragon Princes held up remarkably well against the flank charge, thanks in part to me having reformed Alarielle and the BSB into range, and thanks to them continuing to push the odd wound through against the Ogres in front of them. They lost combat but held their ground.

It was at about this point that Durthu finally disposed of the Ogre BSB. He then spent the next 2 rounds demonstrating why the Ironguts around them should have been grateful for the BSB's intervention, inflicting 5 wounds per turn on the unit until they broke and ran. The loss of the BSB re-roll was probably also when the Maneaters finally folded, and were run down by the Treekin.

Alarielle's unit was not well positioned to rescue the Dragon Princes because of the presence of the Firebelly and the dwindling number of Maiden Guard in the regiment after someone (who shall remain nameless to protect guilty Firebellies) landed another Flamestorm right in the middle of the unit. I decided I could make a difference without the regiment, and Alarielle's fire-proof Noble declare a lone charge out of the unit whilst the Unicorn mage went into the flank. Unfortunately the total distance of 9" was too far for the Noble, who rolled double 1 and barely staggered out of the unit. Which meant the mage went in alone. The Unicorn did a bit, but her charge alone was not enough to really swing things.

The crippled Ironblaster saw an opportunity to finally contribute to the game and charged into the flank of the mage, wounded her twice but failed to kill her (regeneration, baby!). Unfortunately at this point the Dragon Princes finally started to fail, and both of my units broke and were run down.

Unfortunately for Damien, this was about the first thing to really go right for him, and things didn't look like they were going to improve. The Noble made a second attempt to charge the Firebelly and went in alone, fighting the unit to a standstill. By this point Durthu was free and glaring at the shattered remnants of Damien's army and we were starting to run low on time, so we decided to call it there. 
How it ended in the centre. We only actually got through 4 turns, thanks largely to commencing grinding combats in the first turn.
Those Gnoblars up the back amidst the dead Ogres were actually alive. Having not moved all game, I completely forgot about them. Such sneaky ninjas...
I think Damien was in shock as to just how tough and "grindy" Elves could be with Alarielle holding the line together. It had been a fairly impressive display although in truth it could have gone differently if I hadn't had quite a lot of control over what faced what. It had also reinforced to me that Firebellies were bad news. If he'd gotten to more of my units, it would have been very bad.

Things hadn't really cleaned up in terms of control of table quarters and I had unwisely spent my Undeath mage in the failed rescue bid for the Dragon Princes, so I only ended up with 1 bonus point.

Result: Win (15-0) +1 Table Quarter = 16

You can read part 3 or the report here.


  1. Hi Greg!

    It seems that the irresistible magnetism of the Hobby Fiend attracts the most beautiful armies to be featured in your reports :) and MSU Ogres too! Yay!

    Great looking battle again, I really like the terrain despite problems with balance (but we all know whole game has issues with "balance" anyway). I have also spotted very cool looking sheet to track your results. Was it supplied by the organizers?

    Congrats on another victory!

  2. Day 1 treated you well- looking forward to th next instalment