Friday, 6 December 2019

The Gob-Off: Chapter 2

This is a continuation of our Goblin Warhammer campaign. You can find the previous part here...

After his plans were stymied by his chance encounter with Skuzzbutt's ladz, Mush was determined to get revenge. But first, he needed to ensure he had the upper hand. The few squigs he had brought previously had nearly single-handedly destroyed Skuzzbutt's forces, so it was clear that he needed more. Da Weird Toof Tribe had a lot more. It was time to go and "borrow" some...

Mush and Room crept along the dark tunnel at the head of the column, trying not to make too much noise. Surprise was important for this mission. If da Weird Toofs knew they were coming, the caves would soon be filled with the gnashing teeth of angry squigs. And that would be bad.

Behind them, the rest of the tribe sneaked as best they could. Rattles and clunks rang out regularly as the tips of their spears scraped the low roof of the tunnel. Worse was the occasional booming yawn from one of the idiot trolls that they had decided to bring along. The trolls were shambling at the rear of the pack, prodded along by the spears of a team of goblins. 
Stupid Trolls. What a bunch of muppets...

A loud crack echoed down the passage as one of the trolls walked face-first into a low part of the ceiling. Mush winced at the noise. He had thought that the resilience of the trolls might be handy in the coming raid, but in hindsight maybe they were not well suited to the task at hand. They were slowing things down, they were hard work, and it seemed likely that they were going to alert the enemy to their approach.

As if to confirm his worst fears, the troll shook its head in surprise and then roared in anger at the rock on front of it. It took a step back and then smashed its face into the rock again, pulverising its own nose and smashing a large chunk from the low-hanging section of ceiling. It dropped to the floor with a crash, the sounds echoing deafeningly down the tunnel. 

Mush groaned and put his face in his hand. This was not starting well. 


Weirdo, heroic leader of da Weird Toof Tribe, wandered through the darkness of the cave looking for handy things to collect. In his hand he carried his custom handbag squig. He loved his handbag. He took it everywhere.

The various huddled groups of night goblins watched him passing nervously, clutching their prized possessions close to them lest they catch Weirdo's eye. They all knew about his "shopping trips," and they all knew that anything he grabbed would never be seen again.

Weirdo muttered to himself and his handbag as he shuffled along, giving occasional exclamations as he found something of interest. A particularly smooth and shiny stone, a broken sword handle, and a slow-moving and unfortunate Snotling were all snatched up and stuffed into the mouth of his handbag. He giggled as he stored each item. He loved collecting. His handbag was never full. No item was too big. Of course, he had never managed to get anything back out again (he had made the mistake of trying early on, and had nearly lost a hand in the process), but he liked knowing it was all in there.

The usual snarling and snapping filled the air as he passed the squig pens. He gave them a wide berth, knowing that anything worth picking up over there had already been eaten. Something caught his toe as he went, and he stooped to brush away the loose dirt. Beneath he found some sort of runic Dwarf talisman. "Ooooh," he squealed as he snatched it up. He could feel the power of the thing humming through his filthy hand. Glancing around to ensure nobody else in the tribe had spotted it, he hastily stuffed it into the mouth of his handbag for safekeeping.

He shuffled on toward the broken gates of the ancient Dwarf hold, he suddenly halted his search. Strange echoes came from the passages beyond the gates. Someone was coming. Weirdo wondered if they had anything worth storing...

Da Rules
This is the sort of game you can only really do as part of a campaign. The armies are intentionally slightly uneven in terms of points (but maybe not strength). The board would be challenging to maneuver on, with some allowances made for things like random moves (things steer a bit as required).

Mush and Room had a clear objective - they needed to kill the enemy general (Weirdo). If they could do this, they could take charge of the tribe and the Squigs would be theirs.

Weirdo's objective was more traditional - try to kill all the enemy. Oh, and don't die. Mainly don't die...

Da Armies

Mush and Room's Sneaky Raiders (1200 points) - Tim

  • Mush - Night Goblin Shaman (Level 2) with Talisman of Protection, Vindictive Glare, Itchy Nuisance
  • Room - Night Goblin Big Boss with Battle Standard, Light Armour, Shrieking Blade
  • Max Club - Night Goblin Big Boss with Berserker Sword/Club, Potion of Foolhardiness
  • 24 Night Goblins with Spears, Shields, Full Command, Netters, 2 Fanatics
  • 24 Night Goblins with Spears, Shields, Full Command, Netters, 1 Fanatic
  • 24 Night Goblins with Spears, Shields, Full Command, Netters, 1 Fanatic
  • 24 Night Goblins with Short Bows, Full Command, 1 Fanatic
  • 24 Night Goblins with Short Bows, Full Command, 1 Fanatic
  • 6 Squig Hoppers
  • Max Club got a promotion!
  • 3 Trolls

This game was going to be a bit unusual. It would be played on the club's cave boards, making movement a bit different. It was also going to put a lot of squigs on one side, which promised to be potentially devastating for the raiders. We decided to give Tim an a bit of a points boost to try to compensate. Hopefully between the slightly larger units, the fanatics and the netters, it would be enough to make for an even fight...

Note that although we promoted Max Club to a Big Boss, we decided that he was a lunatic and not in contention to lead the army. So Mush remained in charge despite his inferior leadership, in direct contravention of the rules. So there!

Da Weird Toof Tribe (1000 points) - Owen

  • Weirdo - Night Goblin Warboss with Great Weapon, Talisman of Protection
  • Hoppo - Night Goblin Big Boss on Great Cave Squig with Spear
  • 25 Night Goblins with Hand Weapons, Shields, Full Command
  • 20 Night Goblins with Hand Weapons, Shields, Boss, Musician
  • 20 Night Goblins with Short Bows, Boss, Musician
  • Squig Herd with 10 Squigs, 5 Handlers
  • Squig Herd with 10 Squigs, 5 Handlers
  • Squig Herd with 10 Squigs, 5 Handlers
  • 8 Squig Hoppers
  • Troll
  • Troll
  • Mangler Squig
  • Mangler Squig
Both sides had trolls, but both sides had little to no leadership. Owen stepped in to control of the defenders. I figured that made more sense than me doing it, given this army had nothing to do with Skuzzbutt.

Saturday, 16 November 2019

The Gob-off: Interlude

While I busily try to get stuff painted and we work out when the next game in our Goblin campaign (you can find part 1 here) will take place...

Skuzzbutt stalked back and forth in the living room of the broken down building that served as his headquarters. Around him sat his lieutenants, perched on whatever broken furniture they could find. The shaman Ballitch squatted in the corner, gibbering to himself as he often did. Skuzzbutt tried to ignore him and focus on the problem at hand.

"Da problem is da squigs," he told the room yet again. "Dey is dead chompy."

The assembled goblins obligingly muttered their agreement again. Razzie, who was wrapped almost head to toe in dirty rags that served as makeshift bandages, shifted uncomfortably at the memory of just how chompy the squigs had been.

"Wot iz we gonna do?" wailed Idjit, not for the first time. An odd, rather pathetic little goblin, Idjit was not the most clever of the assembled group. Nor was he much of a fighter. But he seemed to be uncommonly lucky, and had by sheer longevity managed to make it into Skuzzbutt's inner council. Not that he added much, now that he was there.

"We needz spears. Long pointy ones!" proclaimed Skuzzbutt. "We need to be able to stick dem squigs before dey get close enough to give us da chomp!"

There was some murmuring of agreement at the obvious wisdom of this plan, and Skuzzbutt was filled with pride at his own cleverness. His military genius was unmatched, and their victory would be assured...

This glorious train of thought was derailed by Idjit, who had a slightly perplexed expression. "Errr, boss..."

Skuzzbutt rounded on him, annoyed at the interruption. "Wot, Idjit?" The already small goblin seemed to sink even further down on his broken stool under the weight of his boss' displeasure. He spoke hesitantly.

"Dem spears, boss. I don't fink it will work."

"Why not? Iz simple fizziks. We reach dem before dey reach us," snapped Skuzzbutt. He shouldn't have been surprised that Idjit would be the one that failed to grasp his plan, but it was nevertheless frustrating. He was always annoying.

"Well yer, boss. Nah boss. Da problem is inishutive, boss," the little goblin whined. "Dey chomp before we can stabs dem."

Skuzzbutt stared at him for a moment. What was he gibbering about? It was obvious he didn't understand the simple plan. The reach of a spear far exceeded the bite of a squig. He glanced about the room, and could see that nobody else had a clue what Idjit was on about either. Ballitch hiccupped, and toppled over in his little corner. Idjit continued to look concerned, but flinched as though he was about to be struck every time Skuzzbutt glared his way. The impudent little runt. There was no point explaining it to him again.

"Shaddup Idjit," he snapped. "I want youz all to go make some long pointy spears so da ladz can practice. Now!"


"Squigs," muttered Mush as he and his brother staggered back toward the camp. "We needz more squigs!"

"Yer," nodded Room agreeably as he limped alongside, using his shattered banner pole as a walking stick. "But where do we find more squigs? Most of 'em got stabbed by dem uvver gobbos."

"Dat's easy," snorted Mush. "We steal 'em from da Weird Toof tribe. Dey gotz heaps of 'em"

"Yer," agreed Room again. "But... dey live deep unnerground innit? How we gonna get 'em?"

Mush looked at him like he was an idiot. "We attack 'em in da cave where dey live, dummy."

Room looked uneasy. "But... itz real dark down der," he whined. "An itz full o squigs!"

Mush turned and whacked his brother over the ear, making him cower and take a couple of steps away to safety. "Dark!" shouted Mush incredulously. "What sort of night goblin iz you? Dark is home!" He gestured around at the surrounding trees, their shadows lengthening as the sun's last light crept away. "Out here under dat 'uge sky! Dis is da scary place!"

Room glanced around, sniffing. "I kinda like it out here," he muttered defensively. 

Mush stared at him for a moment, blinked hard as though he was seeing his brother for the first time, then turned and stormed off on the path toward camp. "Lez go get dem squigs!"

You can find the next part of the campaign here...

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Painted Squigs and Being Patient

I've made some progress on painting some of those new squigs that I recently purchased. I'm trying to get all 30 of the normal squigs done before moving onto the hoppers, but I ended up breaking them into 2 logical groups based on colour. The first group is here, and they're your more common red and orange sort of colour scheme. The second batch will be blue and purple. This gives me 2 relatively distinct units, but they should still look OK mixed together. In the past I've fallen into the trap of painting squigs in every colour under the rainbow, and they really are a mess. I'll have to go back and look at those later. I think a more restricted palette will be more effective.

Anyway, here is the first batch of squigs...

Aren't they handsome? The modern plastics really do hold some of the character of the older metal range. 

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

The Gob-Off: Chapter 1

In the wild, eastern fringes of the Border Princes, in the shadows of the World's Edge Mountains, something terrible stirred. Rumours spread of a nameless evil, ancient and malevolent. They spoke of the doom of the world...

But we're not here to talk about that. In far less ominous news, the Goblins were restless. The tribes were on the move, and their collision was certain to spark great rivalries of pettiness, spite and unwarranted ambition.

It began with an unfortunate farmer, who had been growing some rather interesting mushrooms in his fields...

The night goblin camp was haphazardly arranged, right across the trail. Well, "camp" was a strong term for it. Really they had all just collapsed in the shade under some nice big trees, desperate to hide from the daylight. They lay about in small clusters, moaning about their eyes and the burning hot sun, hidden though it was behind considerable layers of cloud.

The shaman of the tribe, Mush the Magnificent (the last two words were silent), sat on a rock at what had been the head of the column. He sighed, squinting up at where the sun might be, as though it could somehow tell him the time. This was the third time they had stopped, and he was starting to let his impatience show.

Nearby, his brother Room was still on his feet, although he had dumped most of his gear against another rock. He was huffing and snarling as he did his best to look intimidating. He flexed his scrawny goblin muscles yet again, encouraged by the small gasps and wails that came from others as they lay nearby. Room was intent on winning this show of power against this opponent that had the temerity to stand up to him. Unfortunately, this opponent was in fact his own reflection, showing dimly in the beaten metal shield he himself had recently discarded. Room apparently hadn't noticed he was competing with himself. Mush sighed again. Room was an imbecile.

Room's posturing was in fact partly Mush's fault. It was his idea to give his brother the Shrieking Blade he had found, and Room had immediately noticed the frightening aura he seemed to have around other members of the tribe. Even now, sheathed at his hip, its menacing presence could be felt by those who had collapsed nearby. He was far too dim to realise it was actually the blade that made the others scared of him, and it had done wonders for his self confidence. 

Of course, now Room was convinced that he ruled the tribe, and Mush had to work overtime to ensure that he didn't so something truly stupid like issuing orders. That was why he had also given him the honour of carrying the tribe's battle standard. The flapping banner was just enough distraction that Room would be in little danger of having any ideas of his own. 

With Room under control, Mush basically had the leadership of the tribe to himself. Which was great, if only he could get the sluggards moving again. This was meant to be a raiding party: they were on their way to steal the curious mushrooms that had been spotted growing in a farm nearby. But this raid was taking forever, and Room knew if they had heard about the mushrooms, others might have as well. They couldn't afford to be this slow.

He sighed yet again. He admitted to himself that for all that he was the brains of the operation, he had trouble whipping the troops into line. Room's aura of intimidation did have its uses.

"Room, we needz ta moov," he suggested to his brother. "Better show 'em who's boss eh?"

Room gave an unleaderlike squeal of excitement at this invitation to show his authority, and forgot for the moment about besting himself in a flex-off. Snatching up his banner, he began shouting at those nearby, who howled and scrambled to their feet, desperate to stay away from his inexplicably scary person.

Mush smirked as he watched his plans in action. With his level of cunning, nothing could stop them.


The goblin column marched quickly through the trees, the clatter of ramshackle armour and weaponry occasionally accompanied by a snarl from one of the wolves loping alongside. Anyone familiar with the chaos of a goblin advance would have been astonished by the discipline being displayed; these goblins almost behaved like proper, obedient soldiers. It was most unnatural.

At the head of the main column was their proud leader, Skuzzbutt. He sat atop his huge, hairy spider Fuzzbutt as it scuttled along the path. He did not steer; he did not need to. And he didn't know how. But that didn't matter, because he and Fuzzbutt were one, and they moved with one mind (most of the time). 

Skuzzbutt's troops were a model of goblin military prowess. He had spent many moons watching the humans and stunties at work, and he knew what could be a achieved with practice, equipment and the careful feeding of dissenters to a very large and always-hungry spider. He knew his army was unmatched among goblin-kind. 

And now they were on a mission to teach some manners to the uppity human farmer that lived in the foothills. The fool had recruited help from the nearby village and attacked Skuzzbutt's wolf riders as they were helping themselves to his sheep. Well, he would learn the error of his ways. And then the villagers would pay too. They had no idea who they were messing with, and their pitiful defences would offer little protection against Skuzzbutt's noble goblin legions. They would all pay, and Skuzzbutt's fame would grow, inviting more to join his cause. It was inevitable. Nothing could possibly go wrong.

The Gob-Off

An all-goblin campaign in Warhammer Fantasy 8th edition (with selected tweaks).

Chapter 1: The Fungus Farmer

Right, so Tim and I have been talking about doing an all-goblin campaign for a while, and we had the opportunity to set it all in motion on the weekend. I won't pretend it was really carefully planned, but the intent is to chain together a series of games with a narrative theme, so we can show the world who is the supreme goblin, and all that guff. We deliberately started with a very small game and not a lot of special toys, so show that these are petty, up-and-coming rivals rather than proper, established warbosses. We also capped magic items at 25 points.

Skuzzbutt's Goblin Legion

  • Skuzzbutt - Goblin Warboss on Gigantic Spider with Sword of Might, Gambler's Armour, Shield
  • Ballitch - Goblin Shaman (Level 1) with Itchy Nuisance
  • Razzie - Goblin Big Boss with Additional Hand Weapon
  • 20 Goblins with Light Armour, Shields, Full Command, 1 Nasty Skulker
  • 20 Goblins with Light Armour, Shields, Full Command, 1 Nasty Skulker
  • 10 Goblin Wolf Riders with Light Armour, Shields, Spears, Full Command
  • 5 Goblin Wolf Riders with Light Armour, Short Bows, Musician
  • 5 Goblin Wolf Riders with Light Armour, Short Bows, Musician
Behold, my mighty goblin legion. Honestly this was a "what does a goblin army look like with no big toys, artillery, or night goblins" type of effort. And yes, there is a naked hero in there. He filled up the points nicely... Also you can see how lowly my shaman is by the fact that he's represented by a basically naked war machine crewman. I really need a better painted common goblin shaman...

Mush and Room's Musty Horde
  • Mush - Night Goblin Shaman (Level 2) with Talisman of Protection, Itchy Nuisance, Sneaky Stabbing
  • Room - Night Goblin Big Boss with Battle Standard, Shrieking Blade, Light Armour, Shield
  • Max Club's Jabbas - 20 Night Goblins with Spears, Shields, Full Command, 1 Fanatic
  • Clasha's Stickas - 20 Night Goblins with Spears, Shields, Full Command, 1 Fanatic
  • Jabba's Stabbas - 22 Night Goblins with Shields, Full Command, Netters
  • Shifty's Arrers - 20 Night Goblins with Short Bows, Full Command
  • Mad Bounders - 10 Squig Hoppers

Tim is a brave man. He decided he would go all night goblins, and then decided to have twin heroes leading the army, before giving the BSB to the fighter so the shaman could be in charge. That gives his general a leadership of 5. That is heroic. Granted, he gets a re-roll. But my leadership of 8 (without a re-roll) was looking pretty good...

So there you have it. Can a few units of wolf riders negate the threat of a couple of fanatics? Let's find out.

We played on a 4x4' field given the tiny size of the armies. This battle was for control of the farm. Whoever held it at the end of the 6th turn would be the victor!

Tuesday, 24 September 2019

Another wave of reinforcements

My Orcs and Goblins are getting a lot of love at the moment. Actually it's mainly the goblins, but that's OK. They needed more work to begin with. Recently I posted about my incredible good fortune in having a pile of very presentable greenskins practically land in my lap, and now we have this stuff. Actually, this stuff was ordered before the second-hand stuff had entered the picture. So I bought this before that, but there was travel time in involved, so... the arrival of this stuff is the latest development.

I present to you the first models I have ever bought with Age of Sigmar on the packaging...

3 boxes of Squig Herds, 2 of Squig Hoppers, 2 of "Troggoths" (trolls), a big fat Troll to use as a themed giant, and something called Mollog's Mob.

Sunday, 8 September 2019

Twirling, twirling, twirling...

A brief post just to show that I am back making progress again in terms of painting. I am starting to make progress addressing some of the glaring weaknesses in my Greenskin horde. Actually, the whole equation has been thrown off a bit by last weekend's purchase - I have a whole lot more Greenskins in a pretty much state where they are ready to go. Sheer numbers are not really a problem now. 

Anyway, I started work on these guys before the recent influx of models. For a very long time I only had 6 painted Night Goblin Fanatics. This was not really in balance with the number most Goblin players would have been inclined to field, and felt like it really needed to be scaled up. I knew I had a bag full of them somewhere, and now I have finally got around to pulling them out and starting work on them.

14 Night Goblin Fanatics, in classic muted colours. OK, not really. Way back when I painted my other ones, I went for 2 each in red, yellow and orange. I quite like how they stand out against the normal black of the Night Goblins, so I figured I would stick with it. It was suggested I could kind of complete the rainbow for them, and that appealed.

Sunday, 1 September 2019

Unexpected Reinforcements

It's been a long time since I acquired a significant second-hand bundle of models, and I wouldn't normally jump on the blog and talk about it. However, this is a bit of a special occasion. A gentleman turned up at the club, wanting to offload his Warhammer models that he no longer had any use for. He talked a little about the sort of stuff he had, but I wasn't really prepared for what would be there once it was all laid out.

This is an Orc and Goblin army that was clearly a labour of love over an extended period. There are models in here from 3rd edition all the way through 8th. There are a few different basing styles, which may reflect refinements over time, or maybe some of the models had more than one owner. The vast majority of the models are Citadel and Marauder in origin, however a few others have slipped on, most notably an entire regiment of unfortunate-looking Orc archers.

Anyway, I haven't done a great job of lighting this stuff for photos, but hopefully these are enough to give a fair impression of what I have acquired...

Many thousands of points of Orcs and Goblins. 

Thursday, 22 August 2019

Skarsnik and Kemmler

I mentioned in my previous post that Tim and I were inspired to play a game of Warhammer recently, which led to my painting those heroes on big squigs. Well, this was the game. Such as it was... At least I got photos!

Skarsnik's Horde
Tim's highly questionable list was built around the simple concept of whatever I had available that didn't include Orcs, for the sake of glorious Goblin purity. He was limited a bit as some of my more useful elements like Goblin Chariots are in a terrible state of disrepair.

  • Skarsnik and Gobbla
  • Goblin Warboss on Gigantic Spider with Armour of Endurance, Basha's Axe of Stunty Bashing, Shield
  • Night Goblin Great Shaman (Level 4) with Dispel Scroll
  • Night Goblin Big Boss with Battle Standard, 5+ Ward, Great Weapon
  • Night Goblin Big Boss on Great Cave Squig with Spear
  • Night Goblin Big Boss on Great Cave Squig with Great Weapon
  • 40 Night Goblins with Spears, Command, Netters, 3 Fanatics
  • 40 Night Goblins with Spears, Command, Netters, 3 Fanatics
  • 40 Night Goblins with Short Bows
  • 20 Night Goblins with Short Bows
  • 10 Goblin Wolf Riders with Command, Spears, Shields, Short Bows
  • 10 Goblin Wolf Riders with Command, Spears, Shields, Short Bows
  • Squig Herd with 12 Squigs, 6 Herders
  • 6 Trolls
  • 8 Squig Hoppers
  • Mangler Squig
  • Mangler Squig
  • Arachnarok
  • Rock Lobber
  • Doom Diver

Kemmler's Legions
I didn't even make my list. Pete made it for me, with the basic instruction of making a weak Vampire Counts list, as I assumed the Goblin list wouldn't be particularly potent. Especially given I was busy at the painting table, painting up a pair of squig heroes. This is what Pete came up with.

  • Heinrich Kemmler
  • Krell
  • Necromancer (Level 2, Lore of Vampires)
  • Wight King with Battle Standard, Armour of Endurance, Great Weapon
  • 40 Ghouls with Ghast
  • 30 Skeletons with Command
  • 20 Zombies with Standard, Musician
  • 20 Zombies with Standard, Musician
  • 5 Dire Wolves
  • 2 Bat Swarms
  • 10 Black Knights with Command, Heavy Armour, Barding, Shields, Lances
  • 20 Grave Guard with Command, Great Weapons
  • 20 Grave Guard with Command
  • Black Coach
  • 5 Blood Knights
Seems reasonable, right? No vampires, not a lot in the way of fancy toys, and several things where Pete would normally look at them and say "that's terrible" made it in (like the Black Coach)...

We rolled up Watchtower, and decided that would do as well as anything in terms of a scenario. Skarsnik rolled to delay all my units with his sneaky traps, but only managed to snare the Blood Knights. Given how many rolls Tim had made, I got off very lightly. Tim "won" control of the Watchtower, meaning he really lost the first turn...

Deployment. Tim suffered here, due a combination of inexperience with the nonsense of Goblin deployment, and our forgetting the exact order of declaring charges, moving chargers and compulsory movement (that's the correct order. We were using the 7th ed rules where compulsories went in between declaration and movement of chargers). Hey, we're rusty.

Monday, 12 August 2019

Another hop in the right direction

On the weekend, Tim and I decided to play a game of Warhammer. It was all a bit rushed, but on the evening before the game we both tried to work out what to use, and Tim (being the ultra-potent cheese-monger that he is) decided to use an all-Goblin list. Of course, this meant he was using my greenskins, and he expressed an interest in Night Goblin heroes on Giant Squigs (see, I told you he only liked the absolute best stuff). I didn't have any painted, but I had had a pair of them undercoated for months (or maybe years), and it was only 9:30pm... Sure, I can do that. 

Long story short, I got them to a usable standard by about 12:30am and went to bed. We played the battle on Saturday afternoon as planned (I took some photos, which I'll share later). Last night I decided I should probably take some photos of my newly painted models and share them here. But it seems I'm out of practice or something. I went to get the good camera, and discovered that both batteries were flat as a tack. Oh well, I guess the phone camera will do. 

Then I went to set up the lightbox...

 Well this is really helpful...

Thursday, 1 August 2019

A Blast from the Past

This title kind of covers a couple of different aspects of this post.

So some time ago (more than 3 months, truth be told), Pete and I decided that in honour of the games club celebrating its 20th year, we should play a retro game of Warhammer. Specifically, we should play a game of 5th edition, which was what we were playing way back when the club started. Sounded like a bit of fun. Why not?

Well, it's been 3 months and my emotional scarring has mostly healed. I am now ready to share with you my tale of misadventure and woe...

My Empire
I grew up playing Warhammer 4th and 5th edition. I played countless games against my friends, and toward the end, even a few tournaments before 6th edition came along. Much of the time, I was fighting tougher opposition in the form of Undead and Chaos. Only I was not using Empire. I was using High Elves and Wood Elves. I didn't own an Empire army. Using High Elves (mostly with the rather underwhelming 4th edition army book) was a struggle against these stronger lists, but I made do - predominantly with magic. Nowadays I do have an Empire army, and I think of it as my main army. But I really didn't use it until 8th edition. 5th was a very different, unforgiving beast...

So now I set about making a 5th ed Empire army for the first time. I did it with only a few mandatory requirements in my head. The main one was: take a level 4 wizard. I would need it to avoid being bossed horrendously in the magic phases. Oh yeah, and a volley gun. Because those were funny. In the end my list looked something like this:
  • Empire General on Pegasus with Armour of Protection, Dragon Slayer Sword, Shield
  • Wizard Lord with Bright Magic, Black Amulet, Skull Staff, Dispel Scroll
  • 5 Knights Panther with Standard of Shielding. Led by a Hero with Blade of Leaping Copper, Potion of Strength on Barded Steed with Heavy Armour, Shield
  • 5 Reiksguard Knights with War Banner. Led by a Hero with Runefang on Barded Steed with Heavy Armour, Shield
  • 19 Swordsmen with Light Armour, Shields, Standard
  • 8 Handgunners
  • 8 Crossbowmen
  • 3 Ogres with Halberds, Light Armour
  • Helblaster Volley Gun
I'm not going to pretend it was a really well thought-out list. And man, does it look tiny on the field.

Pete's Vampire Counts
Unlike me, Pete was actually using this army way back in 5th edition. Well, he was using different models. But the same army book. The difference was that back then, Pete operated under some self-imposed limit of 50 point magic items. What a nice guy. Then we broke him and hardened him and turned him into something else... Something evil... Well maybe not, but his lists definitely toughened up over time. 

  • Vampire Lord with Hydra Sword, Black Amulet, Carstein Ring, Pure Blood
  • Necromancer Lord with Golden Crown of Atrazar, Skull Staff, Dispel Scroll, 2-Handed Weapon
  • Wight Lord with Heavy Armour, Shield, 2-Handed Weapon
  • 6 Wight Cavalry with Lances, Shields, Heavy Armour, Barding, Standard Bearer with Standard of Shielding
  • 18 Skeletons with Shields, Standard, Musician, Banner of Might
  • 17 Zombies
  • 10 Zombies
  • 2 Vampire Bats
  • 2 Spirit Hosts
  • Banshee
  • Winged Nightmare
Before the game started, we needed to choose spells. We had agreed to use the Colleges of Magic from 4th edition (they were a "back of the book" option in 5th), because the soulless Battle Magic that replaced them was offensive on many levels. I chose Bright Magic in the hopes of getting a spell like Piercing Bolts of Burning and Conflagration of Doom - spells which even Vampire Lords had to respect back in the day. Unfortunately, when I actually got my spells, I didn't get either of these. In fact, I got probably the 4 worst spells in the deck for this game: Burning Head, Sanguine Swords, Scarlet Scimitar and Flamestorm. It was incredibly underwhelming. On the bright side, Necromancers got to actually pick the spells they want. So Pete had no such issues. That's fair...

How we set up. Was this a normal amount of terrain? Maybe? Who can remember, really...

Wednesday, 31 July 2019

Convic 2019 Aftermath - Part 7

This is the final part of my tournament report of Convic. You can find the previous part here. You can find the first part here.

One game to go, and I was still leading the field with AG nipping at my heels. I guess that made it my tournament to lose...

Game 7: Push
Geoff Holland - Dwarfs
  • Golloch's Thunder (formation)
  • Golloch's Fury (Legendary Steel Behemoth)
  • Steel Behemoth
  • Steel Behemoth
  • Earth Elemental Horde
  • Earth Elemental Horde
  • Greater Earth Elemental
  • Berserker Brock Rider Regiment
  • Sharpshooter Troop
  • Ranger Regiment
  • Berserker Lord on Brock
  • Stone Priest with Martyr's Prayer
That's about 50 points short, so I've missed something again. But the important stuff is there, right? 3 Steel Behemoths, and a total of 6 units with Defence 6! It was a wall of steel and stone. I had seen this army sitting on a table and the thought of facing it had worried me a bit. Now we would get to see if those concerns were warranted.

At the start of the game we had to select a single enemy unit to be worth double attrition points. I chose the Brock Riders, and Geoff picked the Winged Beast over on my right.

I was on the same table as before, and Geoff put me on the same side as well. And I was playing Dwarfs again. So there was an element of deja vu here. But Geoff's list was very different from John's, and seemed a whole lot more likely to be pushing at me. He also stacked a lot of weight on my left flank.

Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Convic 2019 Aftermath - Part 6

This is a continuation of my tournament report of Convic. You can find the previous part here.

So I had finally lost a game, but with 2 games to go I was still a single point ahead of AG at the top of the field. I could yet emerge victorious overall!

Game 6: Control (2250pts)
John Healy - Dwarfs

  • Ironclad Horde with Aegis of the Elohi
  • Ironguard Regiment
  • Ironguard Regiment
  • Earth Elemental Horde
  • Greater Earth Elemental
  • Berserker Brock Rider Regiment with Brew of Strength
  • Herneas
  • Herneas' Ranger Regiment
  • Rordin the Dwarf
  • Ironbelcher Organ Gun
  • Ironbelcher Organ Gun
  • Flame Belcher
  • Stone Priest (I presume he had Bane-chant)
  • Battle Driller
  • Battle Driller
  • Mastiff Hunting Pack
  • Mastiff Hunting Pack
I think that's about right, but once again I've missed about 35 points of items somewhere.

John had a lot of deployments, so I couldn't really control what would end up facing the Organ Guns (which scare me). I had a relatively token force on the right of the building, which was effectively dividing more forces.

Monday, 29 July 2019

Convic 2019 Aftermath - Part 5

This is a continuation of my tournament report of Convic. You can find the previous part here.

At the start of the second day, I was somehow undefeated after 4 games. However, I now finally ran into AG, who I don't believe I have ever beaten at Kings of War. Perhaps my reign of terror was finally at an end...

We were up to the largest army size for the remaining 3 games. My list didn't change a whole lot from the previous one; I added another Beast of War and a couple of magic items on my Winged Beasts.

Game 5: Kill (2250pts)
Andrew Goodman - Abyssal Dwarfs
  • Abyssal Grotesque Horde with Potion of the Caterpillar
  • Abyssal Grotesque Horde
  • Abyssal Grotesque Horde
  • Gargoyle Troop
  • Gargoyle Troop
  • Gargoyle Troop
  • Ba'su'su the Vile
  • Dravak Dalken
  • Infernok
  • Greater Obsidian Golem
  • Abyssal Grotesque Champion with Inspiring Talisman
  • Angkor Heavy Mortar
  • Angkor Heavy Mortar
  • Angkor Heavy Mortar
For once I think I might have the list exactly right. Helps when there are so few items. Ba'su'su again... I do dislike him.

AG's deployment was pretty compact. An advantage he would have in this game was that he had fewer unwieldy units. I had plenty of compact elements in my many many monsters, but the size of the Pole-arm hordes makes it harder to concentrate force where you need it.

Thursday, 25 July 2019

Convic 2019 Aftermath - Part 4

This is a continuation of my tournament report of Convic. You can find the previous part here.

3 wins in 3 games. You wouldn't dare dream of it. I had come unstuck against Matt before however, so maybe my run of glory was at an end.

Game 4: Dominate (1995pts)
Matt Sellick - Elves
  • Archer Horde with Heart-seeking Chant
  • Therennian Sea Guard Horde with Brew of Sharpness
  • Drakon Rider Horde with Chant of Hate
  • Awoken Guardians
  • Tree Herder with Healing Brew, Blizzard
  • Tree Herder with Blood Boil
  • Green Lady with Sabre-Toothed Pussycat
  • Elven Prince on Horse with Sabre-Toothed Pussycat
Dominate. Nice and simple. It couldn't be too hard to move a pair of Tree Herders off the centre, right?

Matt's army actually looked pretty small. Sure, there was some good stuff there, but that's a pretty compact deployment.

Convic 2019 Aftermath - Part 3

This is a continuation of my tournament report of Convic. You can find the previous part here.

Somehow I was undefeated after 2 games, and it was now time to shift to our larger 1995 point army lists. This was the point where I kind of wished I wasn't packing away my Arquebusiers, but I was pulling a lot of monsters out of the box instead. So it was a matter of give-and-take.

Game 3: Ransack (1995pts)
Huw Evans - Ratkin
  • Warrior Horde
  • Warrior Regiment
  • Warrior Regiment
  • Enforcer on Fleabag with Diadem of Dragon-kind
  • Lab Rats (Formation)
  • Horde of Blight with Brew of Strength
  • Horde of Shock Troops of Potion of the Caterpillar (I think)
  • Troop of Clawshots
  • Troop of Hackpaws
  • Horde of Tunnel Runners
  • Death Engine with Bloody Carnage
  • Warlock with Critter's Call, Bane-chant, Amulet of the Fire-heart (I think...)
  • Night Terror with Inspiring Talisman
  • Swarm-crier
Again, this falls well short of the 1995 point limit. I've missed a few things. I'm so good at this. Hey, I've never fought Ratkin before, OK? This is all new to me.

Actually, I think I missed a character. Maybe a War Chief with 2 hand weapons? Could be a thing.

Ransack meant we scattered a number of control counters all around the field. The central (light grey) point was worth 3 points instead of 1, and the orange ones (both of which were slightly to my right) were worth 2. The dark green were just worth 1 each.

Huw stacked most of his speed over here, on my left flank. The Rat Ogre dude is the Night Terror (apparently the dude on top is his Inspiring Talisman). The wheels are the Tunnel Runners. The Lab Rats formation meant all the regular Warrior units (the 2 regiments you see here and the horde up the other end) all had Regeneration.

Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Convic 2019 Aftermath - Part 2

This is a continuation of my tournament report of Convic. You can find the previous part here.

So I had narrowly escaped with a win in the first game. This was an unusually positive start for a KoW tournament by my standards. Probably meant I was heading for a fall...

Game 2: Loot (1495pts)
Yan Lai - Empire of Dust
  • Revenant Horde
  • Mummy Regiment
  • Mummy Regiment
  • Revenant Chariot Regiment
  • Revenant Chariot Regiment
  • Scavenger Regiment
  • Scorpion Husk
  • Bone Giant
  • Cursed High Priest on Mount with Blizzard
  • Revenant Champion on Mount
I really should take a photo of people's army lists before each game. I can never remember the details in terms of items. I'm missing 35 points here somewhere.
EDIT: Thanks to Yan's feedback we now know the Revenant Horde had Brew of Strength and the Revenant Champion had the Blade of Slashing. Thanks Yan!

During setup we established that the last time I had played Yan was at Axemaster. It was Warhammer 7th edition. So probably over 10 years ago. The people you run into...

There were more loot tokens over on the right, so I naturally loaded that flank a bit more. I might have underdone it on the left, really. Oh well, can't be everywhere. 2 tokens is enough for a win.

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Convic 2019 Aftermath - Part 1

So after more or less being in a state of hobby hibernation since Cancon, over the weekend I awoke from my slumber to attend Convic. Convic is one of the few 2-day tournaments left on the calendar, and I've been attending it nearly every year since it began as a Warhammer Fantasy tournament something like 15 years ago. The local Kings of War scene seems to struggle with multi-day events at present (with the notable exception of Cancon), and thanks to a number of factors, this year only saw a dozen or so players attend. This led to a very relaxed, community-style atmosphere that was really rather nice. It meant that with 7 games to play, you were more likely to play a given person than not, which was really rather funny - almost like a round-robin.

I had a bit of trouble coming up with lists for the event. I say "lists", plural, because Convic has an unusual format of 3 different sized armies - the games grow as you go along. This year the game sizes were 1495, 1995 and 2250 points.The multiple list format was not really what troubled me - I was just struggling to work out what army I wanted to use. I was mostly trying to stay away from armies I've used in previous events, in particular Ogres (which I have used twice at previous Convics). Whilst that still left me with a few options, the most likely were Dwarfs or Kingdoms of Men.

I'm still hesitant to use Dwarfs when I haven't gotten around to painting any Brock Riders, and a few of my units are under-sized which limits my options. On the other hand, friends were a little scathing of how bland KoM are, and it's hard to justify using them when you can field much the same stuff in League of Rhordia, but with more toys. But I have used Rhordia a couple of times, and really wanted to make a KoM list that would be worth running. I toyed briefly with nonsense like massed infantry flooding the field, but in the end the thing that caught my attention was the Beast of War. It had very solid stats, could add some moderate shooting in the form of a ballista on its back, and was something Rhordia didn't have access to. I decided to field plenty of Beasts of War, and went from there.

These were my lists:

  • Pole-Arms Block Horde
  • Pole-Arms Block Horde
  • Pole-Arms Block Regiment
  • Pole-Arms Block Regiment
  • Arquebusier Horde with Jar of the Four Winds
  • General on Winged Beast with Blade of Slashing
  • Wizard on Horse with Lightning Bolt, Bane-Chant and the Inspiring Talisman
  • Beast of War with light ballista
  • Giant
  • Pole-Arms Block Horde
  • Pole-Arms Block Horde
  • Pole-Arms Block Horde
  • Pole-Arms Block Regiment
  • Pole-Arms Block Regiment
  • General on Winged Beast
  • General on Winged Beast
  • Wizard on Horse with Lightning Bolt, Bane-Chant and the Inspiring Talisman
  • Beast of War with light ballista
  • Beast of War with light ballista
  • Giant
  • Giant
  • Pole-Arms Block Horde
  • Pole-Arms Block Horde
  • Pole-Arms Block Horde
  • Pole-Arms Block Regiment
  • Pole-Arms Block Regiment
  • General on Winged Beast with Blade of Slashing
  • General on Winged Beast with Diadem of Dragon-Kind
  • Wizard on Horse with Lightning Bolt, Bane-Chant and the Inspiring Talisman
  • Beast of War with light ballista
  • Beast of War with light ballista
  • Beast of War with light ballista
  • Giant
  • Giant
No, the lists are not very imaginative. And it's slightly bizarre having more effective shooting in my 1495 list than the 2250 one. As soon as I was putting the Arquebusiers back into the box, I was wondering if I had done the right thing. Ah well, at least I had monsters!

I took plenty of photos during the event, although the first 3 games were a big of a juggling act given I was also using my phone as a chess timer. Hopefully the pictures will help tell the story.

Game 1: Invade (1495pts)
Tim Stewart - Orcs

  • Ax Horde
  • Ax Horde
  • Morax Regiment
  • Gore Rider Regiment
  • Krudger on Ancient Winged Slasher
  • Godspeaker on Gore with Bane-Chant, Inspiring Talisman
  • Giant
  • War Drum

Tim and I arranged a grudge match at the very last minute, because he hasn't played many games of KoW. He was still feeling a little shaky on the rules and was concerned he would instinctively revert to things like Warhammer movement. We decided playing the first game against someone who could watch for it and remind him might be helpful. As it happened, it really didn't come up. He seemed to have his head around things pretty well.

The tables were smaller for the smaller games (4 feet wide at 1495, 5 feet at 1995 and the full 6 feet for 2250). This meant even at the smaller size, the field looked pretty full.