Sunday, 30 September 2012

Putting my dice where my mouth is Empire vs VC

 Hi all,

As promised to Ben, I have TWO battle reports from a good day's gaming with Ryan...I think I might need to come up with some fluff for my army being based on the border with Sylvania given all the Vampire action it has been getting recently (not in THAT way...).

Anywho, the list I used:
Alector the Art Collector:              228
                Bsteed, HA, sh, Dhelm, COC, 4++, biting blade
Bogan lvl4:                                        200
BSB:                                                    144
                Bsteed, FPA, sh, Sword of Anti-Heroes, pofool
Captasus:                                          141
                FPA, ch.shield, DBGem, Somight
Engineer: LA                                     66
lvl1: light, scroll                               90
13 ICKS: FC-Sodiscipline  370
5 Knights: m                                      120
10 archers                                         70
5 archer detach                                35
5 archer detach                                35
2 cannons                                          240
5 Dgriffs                                             290
Stank                                                  250
Hellblaster                                         120

Vs the Vampires who looked something like:

Vamp lvl4 on horse with sword of anti-heroes, 4++, earthing rod, asf, red fury.
Vamp lvl1 on foot with 3+as, sword of might, luck stone, red fury
2x25 zombies with banner
30 ghouls with champ
4x5 wolves
2x1 spirit hosts
13 Black Knights: FC
2 varghulfs

So basically a knight bus, 3 monsters, lots of chaff and some blocks.

GAME 1: Meeting Engagement

woot-the 3rd time in a row Ryan has played this mission-meaning I had to be on my A-game. I won the roll off so deployed first. My deployment looked like this:

and this:

...yeah. Demigriffs, 1 cannon, engineer, Stank and ICKS all decide to do a no-show...

The Vamps on the other hand had a more exciting deployment with only 1 unit of zombies, 1 unit of dogs, 1 spirit host, and a vargulf off the board...there was still enough left to deploy end to end across the board!


Going first was useful as it meant I could get my army on the board! The left corner did a bit of a rejig as I used my newly mobile mages to get within 24 inches of the knight bus to threaten searing doom (and final transmute) , while my captasus moved to counter the doggies that could rip through my back line.

The rest of my army appeared-the BSB and Art Collector hopped into the ICK bus, the dgriffs came on next to them while the stank came on perfectly lined up for max cannon shot at Terrorgiest. Now we had to check the armybook about this one. We knew the stank was to come onto the board in the "remaining moves" section-so could not use any steam points to move, but declares steampoints at beginning of the turn-rules don't state that the Stank has to be on the board to declare steampoint use. So I  declared 3 (for max cannon range).

Magic phase gave me 7 dice, and Ryan 6 dice (2 channels). I ummed and ahhed, measured stuff, muttered tactics under my breath, lined up cannon shots, put the LOS angle tool down in front of a few units to see my options. After all this much consideration I tactically decided to pick up 6 dice and cast Final Transmutation....drawing out the scroll. Shooting my shooting phase was awesome. Stank misfires (taking 2 wounds), cannon that could fire rolls a 1 to wound the Terrorgiest, but my archers kill 2 doggies! I guess my metal mage had been doing some alchemy and had used the rule of equivelant trade (further evidenced by all the homoculus/undead walking around...)

So onto the Vamps. The shot up doggies move forward with Vargulf close behind.

Oh the other side the Black knight bus moves up (and then vanhals forward  a bit after pic taken). Terrorgiest, surprised that it has lived, moves to counter stank and have a nosy at the Demigriff flank.

Magic results in IF vanhels (1 knight dead) and not much else. Shooting phase (yes, Vamps now get one) saw the power of the Terrorgiest. I had to double check the Empire armybook because the Stank is now ld7 = 9 wounds from scream (+ the 2 already taken form cannon misfire) = Stank taken off the board to much yelling of "TAKE IT OFF!"


So with my Stank first late to the game, and then screamed off the board + the knight bus wanting to punch through my lines I had to think fast and carefully. Looking at the situation I saw that my ICK bus had a reasonably risky charge (needed an 8) on the flank of the spirit host that was blocking my Demigriffs. However this charge would either a) result in an overrun into the terrorgiest leaving the Demigriffs free to tackle the blackknights, or b) a sweet combat reform to threaten the flank/rear of the black knights (depending on how they acted). I took the risk and made the charge!

On the other side, some of my archers moved to delay the ghouls from eating their way through my artillery. Captasus charges into the doggies with a sweet overrun into vargulf. My Mage bunker moves back to get some breathing room (while still threatening searing doom and final transmutation).

Magic phase for me is a bit of a tactical one. I start my failing to cast burning gaze on 2 dice (rolling a 3...). I then offered plague of rust on the knight bus (:O controversial making it harder to kill with searing doom...) which was dispelled = enough dice to get final transmutation off! 4 dead knights and a nervous "5" rolled for the general. In the shooting phase I start with a very impressive arrow show that accidently kills a single ghoul. I then very tactically aim the cannons at the terrorgiest and kill it with a single shot along with a counter battery of "YOU ALSO TAKE IT OFF!". The other cannon bounces off a vargulf. The hellblaster takes aim at the knight bus hoping to capitalise on the final transmutation rolls 6, 6, 2. I spent a long hard minute staring at the dice and going over probability tables in my head and decided I was a risk adverse person and re-rolled one of the sixes and got a 1 instead of going for a triple 6. So only 3 shots...none of which hit.

In combat, the captasus passes his fear test! and kills the doggies-overrunning into a vargulf. The ICKS easily take out the spirit host thanks to magical attacks on the BSB and Art Collector. I then combat reform to option a) since the terrorgiest now has a cannonball shaped hole in its remains.

So how will the Vamps respond? Rather aggressively. The ghouls go to eat the roadblock, Who KILLING BLOW 2 ghouls with stand and shoot (well, they would have if they had the rule) before the vampire does a wee bit of overkill and cuts them to ribbons. Swift reform to face the hellblaster. The Knight bus then takes the easy option and charges the vanilla knights (who have a musician -killer of the undead). 

On the other flank, one of the doggie units sees the flank of the Captasus and bounces on in.

Magic phase gets a sneaky vanhels off (IF-Vamp lord has now survived 2 Final Transmutes and 2 miscasts without having to resort to the earthing rod. However the supporting vamp takes a wound) and curse of years that kills 2 knights. Shooting phase...oh right dead turn 2 :P Combat with the Captasus is depressingly familiar-failed fear test (aaaargh scary dogs!), 2 wounds suffered, and he runs away!

Black knight bus combat. Vamp lord is feeling rather weird without his sword of anti-heroes buffs and only manages to kill 2 knights. Even with vanhels the Black Knights only manage to hit once (!), and that bounces off my 1+as. The horses on the other hand manage to bring another knight down. So 3 kills, charge and banner = down by 5...ldship 10 from general and re-roll from BSB = pass the ldship 5 test to hold! Not looking good for the Vampires...


With a quick glance at the situation my ICKS rear charge the Back knights (who had reformed deeper), and the demigriffs manage to get an awkward flank charge off as well.

On the other side my Engineer, inspired by the knights, decides to nobly sacrifice himself-hey-he has light armour so he should be sweet! The bogan mage leaves the archers who go be a stubborn trap for the zombies while my lvl1 bunker shuffles back to avoid the fast approaching vargulf. The Captasus rallies and stares down the vargulf.

Hoping for a high roll to nuke the vargulf, get plague of rust and/or transmutation of lead, get re-roll to wound on the ICKS,  and dispel curse of years, I instead get 4 dice that promptly dispel curse of years...gotta love magic. My shooting phase is another hail of arrows that kills maybe 1 or 2 zombies. My Hellblaster also opens up on this ghouls. 18 shots...3 dead. And to top it all off, a cannon explodes.

So down to the combat to end all combats. The Vampire Lord realising there were only 2 knights in front of him, while a challenge could net more Combat Res, opts to challenge a proceeds to let out all his frustration on the ICK unit champ killing him 5 times over. Then I get my turn to UNLEASH the might of the Empire. The Art Collector gets distracted by the pretty tassels on the Black Guard uniforms (rare collector ed. Sylvania attire) and fails to get through the armour. The BSB completely forgets about the potion of foolishness and only has 4 attacks that also only scratch the armour. The demigriffs are up next and only hit twice and also put some impressive scratches in the armour. However then the Knights get their lances into play and all the hatred attacks hit and 1/2 the demigriff rider attacks hit (ie 1 from 2). This in turn fells SEVEN knights! For none dead in return. To add insult the horses then kick down another leaving the musician, standard bearer and Vamp Lord alive. However the weight of combat res means that the Wicked Witch of the West melts  (Combat res...a Vampire's only weakness). Crumble is painful and very much swings the game my way.

Lucky the supporting vamp is still alive to save the vamps another round of crumble. The Vargulf vs Captasus fight continues with a passed terror check...but a failed fear test..and then a dead Captasus.

The remaining Vampire solo charges the hellblaster as I frantically re-read the stand and shoot rules fruitlessly for something that will let me fill the vampire full of lead. The (now much reduced) zombies charge into the archers in the forest. The ghouls reform to hopefully hold up and do some damage to the ICKS.

No magic phase (scroll) or shooting, but needless to say the hellblaster got stomped.


What to do? ICKS smash into ghouls, Demigriffs take on a single doggie and the light mage marches up to the flank of vargulf and BBQ's it. The engineer walks back to divert the vamp away from the artillery. (who dispelled a searing doom

The archers heroically win combat by heaps and the zombies crumble to 4 (when pic taken), and the ghouls crumble to 3 left.

In vamp turn, engineer, zombies, and ghouls all die and we call it a game.


A resounding victory for the Empire. The first time I've managed to trap the Black Knight bus and get SCRes on my side. I felt I dealt with the chaff well considering I had nothing on the board turn 1 and a number of threats to deal with.

Lore of Metal and lore of light combo?

I'm sold on it. I never draw out scrolls early enough in the game and with this lore I have 2 spells that can do it (searing doom and final transmute). The high casting cost of searing doom is countered by the easier casting costs of plague of rust, enchanted blades, and to an extent transmutation of lead. The only spell I dont want is glittering robes-meaning I always have a spell I want to swap for searing doom.

Burning Gaze is a perfect counter spell for the lore of metal. I thought that the base fire spell would be more useful, but it cannot be boosted in strength-meaning it can more easily bounce of high strength things. The only worry with lore of light is that it means my army has "light metal" which is far too close to being accused of being a fan of Creed...

What would I change?

Only change I can see is the BSB's equipment. Sword of Anti Heroes is a nice to have, not a need to have.  For the same points I can get a 5+ ward, or MR(2) for the unit. Drop the potion of foolishness for the warriorbane to keep the magic attacks (because I play VC's a lot).

Sunday, 23 September 2012

The Empire's new Clothes

Hi all,

So I've finally got the Empire army all ready for tournaments, so I figured I'd show it off.


Group shot of the 1+/2+ armour save brigade.

Stanky Stank

5 Standard knights with a musician. My 1+ as diverters and road block. Also handy for rushing a flank etc.

13 Inner Circle Knights with Full Command, Standard of Discipline with BSB and Archlector in tow. I've done them on 3 connecting movement trays to make them easier to move around and also so I don't be such as "slave to the movement tray" and take advantage of swift reform + Crown of Command goodness.

The "K'daai Destroyer". My Pegasus mounted Captain with charmed shield, Lance of Might and the dragonbane gem. I've got him on an ogre base which I have been able to get away with (ie what peg knights have), but for competitive play I will bluetac 2 calv bases underneath to give him the 50mmx50mm base which I believe the GW Pegasus for the Empire comes with.

The Demigriffs. I was toying with 2 units of 3, but I found that as soon as 1 died, they were useless . Also having 2 units encouraged me to be very, very aggressive with the army when my experience with Empire has shown that a more conservative approach can sometimes be more fruitful. A big unit of 5 means I can hold them back and smash into key units with plenty of grind potential. Also give me somewhere to hide the captasus.


10 Archers with 2x5 archer detachment. No nasty surprises here. 10 to be a mage bunker, and 2x5 to go catch manglers/redirect stuff etc. 


Ignore the bases on the crew-finishing them tonight while watching Stargate. 2 Cannons and a Hellblaster with an Engineer to keep things interesting.


Group shot of the characters.
(from left to right ignoring Captasus who was mentioned above)

BSB has the Crown of Command and Warriorbane for magic attacks
lvl1 Light mage with scroll. Magic missile ftw!
lvl4 Metal mage. A few buffs and hexes, Final Transmutation, and an answer to armour + all but  guarantees me victory in a mirror match.
Engineer...wearing light armour because it COULD save his life + the Marco Columbo model has armour on.
Arch Lector (general) with Dragonhelm, Sword of Antiheroes, 4+ ward, and potion of foolishness.

So that's the army. Hope you like it. TBH I'm not a fan of the basing, but I've kept it like that because to change it would mean re-basing 150ish state troopers, 60 flagellants, 30 Great Swords etc so for the sake of my sanity I will learn to live with it!

The paint scheme is consistant with my original Empire paint scheme (purple and white that very quickly evolved to black and purple!), but being more knight heavy with the new book I've evolved it to be more like the Blazing Suns, just swapping the yellow for purple. 

Now to get in a few test games and get some battle reports prepared.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

The Cleansing...

The cleansing...Imperial vs Xenos

Alrighty-the team game from Glenfest.

3 on 3 1500 pts each. For the Imperials there were:

50 shades of Greyknights:
 Blob of 10 terminators
2 units of 5 dudes in razorback
2 dreadknights
autocannon dreadnaught
All kitted out with the usual toys

Bounce Angels:
Dante with 5 sanguiny guard 3 inferno pistols
10 bolter death company
deathcompany dread
10 assault marines with Landraider
Storm raven

"dont roll a 1" marines:
3 Bike squads with attack bike
2x2 typhoons
2 vindicators
little flying thing

For the mighty Xenos there were:

The army that glen used vs me

My army

2 command barges
3 flying crescent moons with a couple of squads of guys
2 little skimmer guns things
the huge big long gun barge
(sorry not more precise I have no idea what any of this called)

The mission was basic. 1 VP for killing a general (3 per side) 5 objectives on board-the 5th in the middle of the board was a relic worth extra VPS.

We deployed and the Xenos got the first turn. I wont give a turn by turn run down because I was not aware of everything that happened!

But basically the vindicators went BOOM! and exploded. the Necron guns are amazing.  The wraithguard and terminators had an awkwards stare off for most of the game-the wraithguard sneaking forward just enough to hold the centre objective.

Dreadknights vs nobbikers = dead nobbikers. ap4 s5 flamer is not every nice. However, Dreadknights (and assault marines) do not like being charged by ork boyz.

The most exciting part of the battlefield was deep in the Xenos territory where the necron gunships, the warwalkers and the battlewagon were lurking. All got destroyed. Then the storm raven turned up, dropped of a death company dread that got blown up by loota overwatch, and then the storm raven got shot down...all within 12 inches of each other. Carnage!

The flanks were a bit of a  peripheral affair. Necron troops and eldar jet bike guarded the Xenos left objective and the mighty grots the right. Dante and the ladz dropped in to take the necron objective (failed-but got mighty close) and a razorback decided to take on the grotz...who then were supported by 3 necron flyers beaming troops onto the battle.  If the game had lasted another turn the grots would have died to some bikermarines that had snuck through the gap created by a dreadknight.

Eventually the tide of battle went the way of the xenos. The ork boyz successfully assaulted one of the Imperial objectives (with a wee bit of support from 2 command barges) and the terminators FINALLY died to weight of fire. I've never seen so many successful 2+ as!

So a victory to the Xenos (naturally).

The ork kill tally:
dread knight and the assault marines (ork boyz)
death company dread (lootas)
2 typhoons (buzzcoptas)