Saturday, 29 August 2015

Hobby Update

I've been a bit quiet recently, but I've been working away on the hobby side of things. This will be a bit of a general update on what's been happening.

Working out how some of my armies need to adapt for Kings of War has been an interesting process. Some of my armies are really not where I would want them to be - for instance my Dwarfs, who simply don't have the right unit sizes in the right places, and currently have no models to use for Brock Riders or Earth Elementals. Clearly they need some work, but I've already earmarked them for attention during Duelling Paintbrushes, so I guess steps are already being taken there. 

My Orcs, Elves and Empire are in better shape, thanks mainly to the size of the armies. They cover most potential short-comings through sheer weight of numbers. There are still things that need to be addressed, however. The main problem for my Empire is the Horde unit size for missile troops. I didn't have a single coherent regiment of 40 Crossbowmen, Handgunners or Archers. This is not really surprising, given it's a completely impractical unit in Warhammer. Too many of the models in such a unit wouldn't get to shoot. Anyway, it's an option I now want. So I set about increasing one of my Handgunner units to a 10x4 formation.
40 Handgunners, complete with a 15-man unit filler.

Thursday, 20 August 2015

The Battle of Blood Valley - Part 3

This is the third and final part of our battle report. You can find the previous part here.

Empire Turn 4
Empire Turn 4
The toll was mounting on both sides as the battle continued. Despite their pursuers having lost interest, the morale of the few remaining Halberdiers was too badly shattered for them to regroup and they fled the field entirely. The Handgunners fired a volley through the windows of the house, but the Ogres hiding inside were difficult to pick out and they took little real damage. The Cannon crew noticed the commotion and turned their machine to fire across the field. The shot blasted through the upper floor, killing the already-wounded Ogre who had been making his way upstairs.
"Kill me first, Mr Daemon Prince!" "No, I demand my doom first!" "Wait your turn!"

Monday, 17 August 2015

The Battle of Blood Valley - Part 2

This is a continuation of the Battle of Blood Valley battle report. You can find the first part here.

Empire Turn 2
Empire Turn 2
The Empire general and army standard had fallen. They and the Knights escorting them had fallen prey to Reichardt's own hubris and needless aggression. Their skulls would be added to Khorne's collection, but the battle was not yet over.

Lost in the mindless stampede as they ran down the fleeing Empire commander, the Chaos Knights were oblivious to the charge of the Greatswords into their exposed flank until it was too late. The Skullcrushers were also unexpectedly flanked when the Chaos Hounds blocking the path of the Outriders decided to turn tail and flee when they charged. As the Hounds made their escape through their own lines (and ultimately from the field entirely) the Outriders altered their course and charged the monstrous Skullcrushers instead. What they thought about this sudden change of opponents is probably best not recorded.
The Chaos Knights ans Skullcrushers find themselves flanked mid-celebration. How unsporting. The Outriders were meant to be getting out of the way for the Steam Tank to charge the Skullcrushers, but compulsory movement occurring later meant the Outriders had already maximised and left no room.

Friday, 14 August 2015

The Battle of Blood Valley - Part 1

A 3,250 point Warhammer Fantasy Battle 8th edition battle report with Aaron Graham.

It has been a while since I posted a proper battle report, so I thought I would put out the call and see who was interested in these disturbing and Age of Sigmar-laden times. Aaron put up his hand, and we set about planning a game. Things were largely dictated by what he had available (hence the slightly strange points limit). I tried to make an army that might face off fairly evenly against the sorts of units he would be fielding, and away we went.

Unfortunately the lighting at the club is really not great, so some of these photos are pretty dark despite my efforts to adjust the camera. In the end (as the afternoon got even darker) I wound up resorting to the flash. Sorry about my shoddy photography skills. Anyway, on with the game!

Smoke smeared the horizon as Grand Master Reichardt called his column to a halt at the top of a gently rolling hill. They stood on the lip of a green valley. The farmhouses occupying the area had all been abandoned for a while. The Chaos warband that was rampaging in this direction was hardly the first threat to the area in recent memory. In truth, the whole region was a war zone. A tide of warriors had been arriving from the north, and there was a limit to how many armies Elector Count Valmir von Raukov could dispatch to combat the problem. 

Reichardt's task force was one such force. He had been dispatched with the specific purpose of intercepting and destroying this latest warband before its southerly course took it beyond the Elector's reach and deeper into the Empire. This was not the first such sortie that the Grand Master and his men had been on. Every fighting man in Ostland was a veteran by now; there was no room for idle men.

A forced march had brought them to this valley, which Reichardt had identified as the best place to halt the northerners. They were arriving toward the later part of the afternoon however, and the sun would soon be setting. It would have been time to make camp, however the sounds from the other side of the valley suggested that there would be no time for that. The battle would take place now.

Already the lead elements of the Chaos force were emerging from the trees on the far side of the field. As the sun began to set behind them and the smoky sky overhead began to turn red, the gathering Northmen took up a chant as they formed ranks across the valley from the hastily deploying Empire forces. The chant was simple, but it simultaneously struck fear into the hearts of their enemies and praised their malevolent master.

"Blood! Blood! Blood! BLOOD!"

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Another duel on the horizon

My hobby life seems to revolve around a series of annual events. The trip to Canberra for Cancon and the large game around the end of the year come to mind. Amongst these regular traditions is the challenge that is known as Duelling Paintbrushes. This has been going on in various forms since 2011 (the year I started this blog). Anyway, it's back again. Or rather, it will be in October.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Ostland Halberdier Regiment Done

It took me a while (getting sick never helps), but eventually I got my latest regiment of Halberdiers finished. These guys are the third regiment in my "Ostland" contingent (I always feel obliged to use the quotes because I know that the colours are not quite right - they should be mainly black and white rather than black and red). 

The unit continues my trend of building my army around core blocks of 60 infantry. This habit may need to be revised a bit if I find myself playing more Kings of War, as the only unit in the Kingdoms of Men list that can be fielded as a Legion (60 men) is Militia. At some point I will probably take another swing at growing the units to closer to 80 in order to allow each of them to be split into 2 Hordes (units of 40).
60 Halberdiers, ready for some Warhammer or KoW action.

Monday, 3 August 2015

Kings of War

Over the last month or so I have found time to play 3 games of Kings of War. So obviously I am now an expert. Well OK, maybe not. But I've been able to read the rules and put what I read into action a few times in order to get a feel for what is going on. I used a different army each game (Elves, Orcs and Kingdoms of Men), with the first 2 games being against Kingdoms of Men whilst the third one was against an Orc and Goblin alliance (those are separate lists). I know some people have been waiting to hear my thoughts about the game, so I guess it's time to start talking about it.

Given the Warhammer-centric nature of this blog, I will approach the game from the perspective of a Warhammer player rather than someone who is new to both games.

It's like Warhammer
In some ways, this statement is true. A game of KoW looks a lot like a game of Warhammer when the models and terrain are all on the table. Regiments are formed up into ranked up rectangles, with the separate monsters, characters and war machines there in support. For all that KoW is set in a different background (the world of Mantica) with its own races and characters, the classic races of Orcs, Dwarfs, Elves, Undead and Humans are all there. The parallels are strong, and can probably be partly attributed to what was presumably Mantic's original goal of offering a more affordable option to players wanting to make a Warhammer army. The crossover in terms of the models goes both ways, of course. You can quite easily make an entire KoW army out of Warhammer models, although there are occasional things with no direct equivalents.
From my 3rd game, using Kingdoms of Men against Orcs and Goblins. Yep, it looks a lot like Warhammer.
Units move at a similar pace to what they do in Warhammer, although most things seem to go 1" faster. Charging is more like pre-8th edition however, with units travelling at double their base movement rather than adding a dice roll to determine their distance.

With all these similarities, this game is a lot more like Warhammer than Age of Sigmar is.

It's not Warhammer
For all that the game may look familiar at a glance, KoW is actually very different from Warhammer. The differences are everywhere, but I'll focus on the main ones.