Saturday, 3 February 2018

Cancon 2018 Aftermath - Part 5

This is a continuation of my report of the recent Clash of Kings tournament at Cancon 2018. You can find the previous part here.

Game 5: Eliminate
Kate Price, Basileans

Game 4 was a bit of a low point for me. I had been absolutely smashed at the end of a long day. I arrived on the second day hoping that things would improve. Maybe I could avoid any game-losingly bad decisions. That would be a start.

Game 5 was against Kate's Basileans, featuring a Dragon, 2 units of Elohi and a horde of Knights. What could go wrong?

Well it seems like the first thing that went wrong was that I missed taking photos at the start of the game. Could be worse. I had remembered to Vanguard, but once again I failed to get the first turn. By now I was kind of expecting that, so I had positioned things to receive a charge. Which is exactly what the Wild Guard did.
And the Forest Shamblers. But at least they only had to fight Sisterhood Panther Lancers. How is it that there are whole units of girls riding panthers, and I don't have them? Maybe I need some Basileans. I do have hardly any models already, after all...
This is me remembering to take photos part way through the first turn. There's a Phoenix over there behind the Knights. For this mission, each of us had our 3 most expensive units carrying a token representing their being a target that needed to be killed in combat. In my case this was the Sea Guard, Tree Herder and the Stormwind Cavalry. Kate's valuable targets were the Knight horde and both units of Elohi.
The Forest Shamblers absorbed the charge of the Panther Lancers, then routed them with help from the Tree Herder. The Wild Guard also weathered the attentions of the Elohi, and then counter-charged them alongside the Drakon rider. I had thought the Drakon would be in the flank, but when the time came it turned out I had stuffed it up slightly and he was only in the front. Probably largely due to this, I failed to rout the Elohi.
This is me doing my best to control the left flank. The Sea Guard and Bolt Thrower fired at the Elohi, whilst the Stormwind Cavalry ensured they wouldn't be able to fly over their heads, and would be hindered if they charged.
This is the price you pay when you fail to deal with the Elohi. Their big Dragon buddy turns up and eats your poor little Dragon. I lost both units. :(
The Forest Shamblers were positioned to see the rear of the Elohi if they failed to rout the Wild Guard, but that didn't happen. The Tree Herder was also hoping for a target if the Dragon went into the Forest Shamblers, but instead had to entertain himself with the Men-at-Arms (who are really not very entertaining).
The Forest Shamblers had to content themselves with a frontal charge on the Elohi, and a hindered one at that. I think it took them 2 goes to finish off the Elohi. They were not helped at all by the Wizard floating around behind the combat, Soul Draining my guys and bolstering the Elohi.
This side was interesting. Only after turning to face the flank did Kate realise that her massive Knight horde was not going to fit through the gap between the house and the edge of the table. So my Stormwind Cavalry were safe where you can see them here. Well, safe from her Knights anyway. The Elohi could still get me. However, the Phoenix had flown over and hid behind the house so I couldn't shoot it. She was successful in that goal, but my Cavalry could see it, and could charge it. But if they did that, they'd go past the narrow choke point and be exposed to a very ugly counter-attack from the Knights. Unless... if they routed the Phoenix and rolled 3" for backing up after the fight, they would get back to safety. So I was a 1 in 3 chance of pulling it off. Terrible idea, but I couldn't resist... and got away with it. It was lucky. The Phoenix was dead and the Knight horde was back to being useless!
The Dragon was working his way around, cleaning up. He ate the Bolt Thrower in the edge of the forest, then moved on to pick on the Tree Herder. In my defence, I saw this coming. The Tree Herder had turned his rear to the Men-at-Arms in order to keep the Dragon in his front. The Forest Shamblers were waiting in the wings, having finally dealt with the Elohi.
So what happened here, since I clearly neglected to take relevant photos? Kate set the Elohi and Knights to watch each other, so that I'd have to gamble with the Stormwind Cavalry if I wanted to attack either. I couldn't just ignore them - both units were objectives for me. The Elohi were damaged, so I decided it was worth it. The Green Lady bravely volunteered to buy me some time, and flew right up in front of the Knights. Then then Stormwind Cavalry rode in and dealt with the Elohi. All as planned. Super smooth.
So. The Tree Herder survived the attentions of the Dragon and Men-at-Arms, but he was wavered. The Forest Shamblers arrived in the flank of the Dragon, but they were hindered. They rolled thoroughly unimpressively, but then made up for it a bit by rolling a freak waver on a double 6. So maybe things would be OK.
Not only did the Green Lady survive the charge of the Knights, she didn't even waver. This was largely thanks to Kate's generosity in rolling double 1s for her nerve test. So the Lady was free to float back out of the way as the Stormwind Cavalry charged into the space she vacated. The Palace Guard hurried up as quickly as they could in reserve. The Knights held their ground, but their counter-charge was toothless without Thunderous Charge. My Stormwind Cavalry wore it stoically and prepared for their own counter-charge.
At this point the Palace Guard arrived as planned, and it proved just enough to remove the Knights and claim me another objective.
I didn't have it all my own way, however. In the centre, the Tree Herder had continued to waver every time he took damage, whilst the Wizards worked their magic with Soul Drain on the Forest Shamblers. They succumbed, and eventually the Tree Herder did too. So for all that I had claimed all 3 of my objectives from Kate's units, she took one back when he perished.
I had been lucky in a few places in this game, most notably with the Stormwind Cavalry backing off 3" in order to avoid the wrath of the Knight horde. My forces had struggled a bit elsewhere, so I was fortunate to have come out of the game with a relatively solid victory.

Result: Win, 18-3

You can find the next part of the report here.

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