Thursday, 1 February 2018

Cancon 2018 Aftermath - Part 1

Cancon is done and dusted for another year, and I survived once again. Honestly survival was one of my key motivators this year - the conditions were pretty oppressive at times in terms of heat and humidity, and despite spending the first day of the convention just wandering around and talking to people, I was exhausted. So I was really worried about how I'd hold up over the next 2 days when I'd also be playing 7 games of Kings of War. Suffice to say I decided I'd be happy with being able to walk out the door at the finish, so I was determined not to exhaust myself over-thinking my games.

As I mentioned previously, I decided to take Elves to the tournament. I had basically never used them before (I did once when the 2nd edition rules were still in beta), and I hadn't played any other games of KoW in a year either. So I was going to be a bit rusty, even if I did want to be competitive. This also contributed to my "take it easy" philosophy. I was there to blow off the cobwebs, play a few games, meet some people, and generally make up the numbers...

This was my army list:

  • The Green Lady with 1 Sabre-Toothed Pussycat
  • Tree Herder
  • Drakon Rider Lord
  • Elven Mage with Fireball, Bane Chant
  • Horde of Therennian Sea Guard with Chant of Hate
  • Regiment of Palace Guard
  • Regiment of Stormwind Cavalry with Potion of the Caterpillar
  • Green Lady's Wild Guard (Regiment of fancy Hunters of the Wild)
  • Horde of Forest Shamblers
  • Bolt Thrower
  • Bolt Thrower
I had intended to try to paint up a new regiment of Stormwind Cavalry for the event, but ended up being extremely busy in the lead-up and it soon became apparent it wasn't going to happen. I didn't even really finish the Green Lady, but she was usable enough.

Anyway, this is how things went on the day...

Game 1: Scavenge
Tony Winmill, Goblins

Tony was very nice and helpful, happy to explain how the scenario worked and also what this "Blood boil" spell was that he was carrying on his 3 wizards. It was quickly becoming apparent to me that my lack of practice would be exacerbated by my lack of familiarity with the Clash of Kings rules. Oh well, what was the worst that could happen?
The first game was always going to be rough. I had never deployed this army before, and had to try to remember rules and other inconvenient things...
You can see the Green Lady there at the back of my lines. See, she did just about get finished.
War Trombones. 3 of them. Aided and abetted by a team of wizards and a standard bearer who fancied himself one. And 3 rock lobbers. I could see what this list's main threat was going to be (if you ignored the 3 hordes of Trolls and the Giant). But no, I didn't know how I was going to handle it, especially when I had to try to contest the objectives in the centre. I decided maybe my best bet would be to rush the Trombones and Wizzes. Which would have been much easier if I had remembered Vanguard. Well actually I did, but it was after I'd already completed Turn 1, which was a little late to help me. Like I say, rusty (and terrible).
My poor Drakon got wavered in the first turn, one of my Bolt Throwers also wavered, whilst the other routed. Not a great start. And no, I didn't get to go first. Actually I don't believe I got to go first in the entire tournament. But that was only 7 games, so not that unlikely, right? I did manage to shoot a War Trombone to death in my turn, which was some minor consolation.
Yes, there was a left flank too. Well, Tony had one. I had elected not to. I figured he had so much more stuff than me that I couldn't contest all 3 objectives at once. Better to consolidate my forces on the other side of the field.
As I said, I figured I needed to try to rush in. I did it badly, but it was the plan. it got my Stormwind Cavalry charged, but at least they weren't being shot. The Trolls didn't do a very good job and they bounced off whilst the Goblins moved in to block my Wild Guard.
In order to ensure the Giant couldn't see them, the Sea Guard had turned so much that Magwa and Jo'os were able to go into the flank. That hurt a bit, but meant I was guaranteed a counter-charge on them. So that was not so bad.
Magwa and Jo'os didn't survive the counter-charge, which was good. However my combined charge of the Tree Herder and Forest Shamblers was unimpressive against the Trolls in the forest. I had hoped to go through them and reform to really threaten Tony's line from the cover of the forest.
The other flank was up and down. I realised the Wild Guard had space to turn into the flank of the Trolls, and they were duly obliterated by the 50 attacks that followed (and the efforts of the counter-charging Cavalry). The Green Lady was busily trying to heal the Drakon Lord, who I had belatedly realised I could move into cover despite him being wavered. I did a very poor job of it though. Thought the hill would hide me (forgot I was taller), turned too hard so that I couldn't see to contribute next turn...
The Trolls had a go at my Tree Herder (the Goblins also went into the flank), whilst the shooting tried to deal with the Forest Shamblers (but didn't finish the job). The Trolls on the hill charged down and smashed the Stormwind Cavalry, avenging their fallen brothers.
The Sea Guard wore a charge from the Giant and began a series of back-and-forths between them. The Tree Herder and Forest Shamblers finished off their Trolls and turned to face the threats from both sides. I realised immediately after this that the Tree Herder was a mistake. I should have turned my back on the Goblins, ready to contribute in amongst the main Goblin line. On the right I made a bigger mistake. I charged the Wild Guard into the Goblins. I figured I would sweep them aside, turn to face the Trolls, and then the Drakon would flank the Trolls...
Except that was foolish optimism. The Wild Guard were probably never likely to break a fresh regiment of Goblins in a frontal charge; their nerve is too high. And then I rolled badly and didn't even come close to routing them. Did like 2 wounds. Which meant I didn't get to reform, which meant the Trolls were in the flank... which meant no more Wild Guard. :(
Tree Herder vs Goblins, Sea Guard vs Giant. One of these engagements would be close, and one of them would not. Note that the Forest Shamblers were gone, however. They got a little bit Tromboned and Blood Boiled. Actually they got a whole lot Tromboned and Blood Boiled.
Ships passing in the night. After looking like he was going to struggle with the Sea Guard, the Giant fired up and smashed them. My Tree Herder elected to run on past when he failed to get a decent look at a charge on the Giant, fleeing to my left to get away from the range 12" nastiness behind him. He left my Bolt Thrower and Mage on Giant duty. They did get him eventually.
After the demise of my Wild Guard, the Drakon Lord was deprived of the flank charge he was hoping for. At this point I realised I really had nothing I could do with him because of the Trombones, so sent him into the Trolls anyway. 
He survived the counter charge from the Trolls, and then he and the Green Lady commenced Operation Annoyance by sliding through gaps in Tony's line and threatening more vulnerable things. Unfortunately at this point I realised the Green Lady had precisely 0 attacks in combat, so was no chance to interfere with the shooting alone. She did try firing off her pussycat, but it only did 1 wound to the Trombone. Sadly the magic and shooting proved too much for my little annoyances to overcome.
Having fled the horrors of the right flank, the Tree Herder did manage to kill off one regiment of Goblins, but the other one survived with the token it had generated. So whatever feeble efforts I had managed to triumph in terms of objectives was a lost cause.
I had been pretty comprehensively outplayed, and I'm still not entirely sure how I could best have dealt with the many threats Tony had to wield against me. Oh well, at least I hadn't been wiped out.

Result: Loss, 3-17 (I think by this point I hadn't realised that the scores were generally out of 21 and I stooged myself a point. Maths for the win!)

Normally I put more than one game in each part of my tournament reports, but this one took a little while. I seem to have taken quite a few pictures. I think 1 game will do for now. 'Til next time!

You can find the next part of my tournament report here.


  1. G'Day Hoodling - Nice bat rep. Those gobbos are hard to deal with as they so many drops with plenty of options. It can take a while to grind through them. I am building up a list myself but mantic have nerfed the trombones a wee bit in Clash of Kings 2018. So maybe in future games easier to handle.

    I am I have been a longtime lurker of your site (Love those massive games you do - ah the old warhammer days) and actually met you during this game, That's me in the 3rd last photo LOL ,as I popped by to say G'day to old buddy Tony. He is a very helpful and nice bloke to play against. He has helped me out a fair bit too. Appreciate you sharing on your website and also for indulging my conversation over the table @ Cancon. Now to read some more of your reports.

    take care

    1. Cheers mate. I was half-planning to bring Goblins myself, but that was mainly to motivate me to paint some more, and it didn't really get off the ground. One day!