Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Battle on Beale!

So the BoB finally arrived. I left Durham on Thursday and finally got to Memphis on Friday afternoon. The venue was really nice, and the hotel was great also. 93 players participated in the tournament and it was a great time.

Unfortunately (as you probably can tell by the lack of updates) I didn't get my army painted in time. I only got about half of it done, but I was OK with that as towards the end painting was becoming more of a chore than a hobby.

Now down to the Battle Reports:

My List: Vampire Counts – 2244 Pts.

Lord Level 3
Dreadlance, Black Pariapt, Dispel Scroll, Red Fury, Walking Death, Barded on Nightmare

Vampire BSB Level 1
Talisman of the Lycni (M9), GW, Walking Death, 6+ Ward

Vampire Level 1
Book of Arkhan( Bound Vanhel’s), Walking Death, Barded on Nightmare

Necromancer on Corpse Cart
Know +1 spell, 2x Dispel Scroll, Lodestone (+1 Wd to raising)

10 Skeletons

10 Ghouls

20 Zombies

3 Fell Bats

2x Unit of 5 Dire Wolves

16 Grave Guard, Seneschal

5 Cairn Wraiths

5 Blood Knights, Strigos Banner (Hatred)

Game 1 – Justin Williams – Dwarves

Well I’ve never played against dwarves before, but that’s not a surprise as before the tournament I had only played 5 games at 2250. He had a nice balanced list (he got 2nd for Best Selection), and was a really nice guy. Only 1 cannon and 1 bolt thrower, some thunderers, warriors, hammerers, a gyrocopter and I think that was it (probably forgetting some things as it was the first game – Note: bring a notebook for next year). The game wasn’t too eventful, we were both pretty new and the scenario was really complicated, so the turns were slow. Big events included him taking out my necro and corpse cart on turn 1 with his cannon, him wiping out my blood knights in another turn of shooting, and me losing my wraiths to a big block of hammerers. Like I said, the turns were slow so we didn’t get into too much HtH combat as we only reached turn 4. I made some dumb moves, like giving him a flank shot on my blood knights with his bolt thrower, and overestimating my 8” vanhel’s to get a flank on the hammerers unit, which is why my wraiths crumbled by CR (though I shouldn’t have charged them at the unit in the first place). All in all a fun first game, he got a win and the scenario – he had the double US banner, so I wasn’t touching the sauce.

Game 2 – Jeffrey Arp – Demons

A Khorne Demon list, but not over the top. He was really quiet and we didn’t have much conversation ( for instance, I asked him how his first game went, and he replied “Good”.) Four units of Flesh Hounds, 3 units of 10 Bloodletters, Herald with Stubborn Banner on Juggernauts joined by 2 Bloodcrushers, and the Bloodthirster. Good list for me to go against, he had a ton of magic resist, but no scrolls and just 2 dispel dice. I could pretty much do what I wanted with my magic. I just kind of stayed near my deployment zone and positioned my stuff to hopefully get some flank charges later on while he surged forward with everything. I was pretty wary of the Bloodthirster though, as I knew he would probably go right for my Lord, which he did. I positioned my Lord’s unit poorly and in turn 3 he got a combo charge off on it with the Thirster and a unit of Flesh Hounds. Invocation and champion challenges managed to keep the unit alive though, along with Vanhel’s constantly on the unit to give it ASF and hit rerolls. Meanwhile, I got my Blood Knights through the flank of nearly his entire front line with more Vanhel’s spamming. They proceeded to steamroll 2 units of Bloodletters, 1 unit of Flesh Hounds, and both Bloodcrushers (he moved his Herald out of the unit to save it). This was in one turn mind you, as his front line was in combat with mine by then, so I had the Knights overrun first, and so was able to do all the combats except the Bloodcrushers, which weren’t in combat yet. At this point my lord’s unit was getting pretty thin, though the Grave Guard managed to get a wound through on the Thirster (thank you KB). At my last turn, my Knights had overran to a point just behind the big combat with my Lord’s unit, but facing the wrong way so they didn’t have LoS to the Thirster and Flesh Hounds. I turned them, Vanhel’s the unit in my magic phase, and even a Bloodthirster isn’t going to survive 9 S7 attacks with rerolls. I ended up getting the win and the scenario.

Game 3 – Hank Adams – Dark Elves

Freaking jerk-off list. 2 Manticores (one with his Lord and one with Hero), Hero on Pegasus with Hotek Ring, 2 Hydras, 2 Cold One Chariots, 2 units of Shades, 2 units of 10 crossbows, and 3 units of Dark Riders – all with Rpt. Crossbows. My first non-fun game of Warhammer. I really didn’t care when he showed me his list and just kind of wanted to get the game over with, so I just deployed everything together. Short story is he shot both of my infantry units out on Turn 1 and 2, so all of my Vampires were forced into the Grave Guard unit. He was kind of a douchebag at some points in the game, such as declaring that my Blood Knights were out Vanhel’s range of his Chariots, and proceeding to measure without me having a chance to look (they were on his side so I told him he could measure, but I thought he would at least let me see), he also did the same with 2 fleeing hydras and a unit of shades, declaring that they all stayed on the board by ½ inch without letting me see. Not a big deal, as I was getting obliterated anyway. He wiped me off the table, with me killing a unit of crossbows, a unit of shades, and one hydra the whole game. Loss, but no one got the scenario (two wraiths made his crossbows flee from the building on the last turn). I dinged him in sports and comp.

P.S. Ben I gave him a -3, so I don’t know what his other opponents were thinking.

Game 4 – Bryan Bledsoe – Dwarves

It was a semi-gunline list with 4 Bolt Throwers, 2 units of 10 Thunderers, a unit of 10 Rangers, 2 Gyrocopters, a unit of Miners, a unit of 15 Warriors with double US Banner, and a big block of 20 Hammerers with Lord on Shieldbearers. He was a super-nice guy though, and received my best sports vote. He deployed ready to shoot me to bits. He kept his Warriors and Hammerers back in one of his corners, while spreading out his Bolt Throwers and Thunderers across the table. His Rangers scouted on the left side of my deployment zone. I managed to crawl across the table at him, screening my army with raised Zombies and Wolves. A couple of bolt throwers were on a hill though, and my Blood Knights barely made it (at one point they were down to 1 model). He only had the base 4 dispel dice, so once again my magic was almost free. By Turn 4 my units were finally reaching his line, with his Miners scrambling behind me. The Blood Knights were forced to charge some Thunderers thanks to Frenzy, but I rolled 5” for overrun, and they stayed on the board. My BSB also charged a Bolt Thrower that was positioned in front of his Hammerers block, along with Vanhel’s-ing my Ghoul unit into it also. Meanwhile my Wraiths and a unit of raised Zombies got into combat with the Warriors. I didn’t know about the Oathstone though, and so my Zombies who were supposed to take away ranks from their flank charge, didn’t. The CR ended up crumbling my Wraiths on the last turn. By now though I was able to charge my Blood Knights into the front of the big Hammerer’s unit, and my BSB and Ghoul unit both overran into his flank (he turned to take the charge from my Knights). CR saw the whole unit destroyed in a round of combat. Win for me, and the scenario.

Funny events at the end:

After shooting his Bolt Throwers at my Knights almost all game (when he could), he finally got the last 3 on his last turn with 1 shot. My Knights had overran from the Hammerers combat and so their flank was exposed.

This was also the chip scenario. I had a unit of Wolves reduced to 1 model by shooting, and so sent him around collecting 3 chips. In his last turn he killed it with a Gyrocopter flame attack, but on my last magic phase I raised 5 Zombies on top of the chips, taking the scenario.

I rolled 11 S4 hits on my magic missile at the end of the game, killing a whole Bolt Thrower crew.

Game 5 – Nick Bradley – Warriors of Chaos

He had a Level 4 on Disc, a Level 2, 2 units of Warriors, 2 units of Hounds, 3 Dragon Ogres, 2 units of Marauders, and a unit of 6 Knights with Exalted Hero. This was his 2nd game against VC for the tournament, and apparently his first encounter didn’t go so well, as when I showed up the first words he said to me were “Oh great, another VC player”. He deployed most everything in the middle, with a unit of Warriors and his Knights on his left flank. I pretty much went head on with him, as I was pretty sure my combat could beat his combat. I deployed a unit of Wolves and my Zombies against his Knights and Warriors to try and slow him up (I really didn’t want to get into combat with that bus unit). My first turn I raised the Zombie unit up to 42 models and moved them toward his Knights. I also sent my Bats to march block his Warriors. He just moved the rest of his line forward and I positioned my Wraiths in the forest ready to deal with the Ogres. This was really the largest magic list I had to deal with in the tournament. He cast Infernal Gateway every round, with me scrolling them or just throwing a ton of dice at it. He got off 2 the whole game with IF though, but rolled extremely poor (the first one was 2 S7 hits on my Lord’s unit, and the second was 7 S4 hits). The middle combats went very well for me, and I saw his Dragon Ogres run off the board from my Wraiths, and his Warrior unit chased down after a combo charge. The Knights on my right flank though, were chewing through my crap units faster than I thought they would (they killed all 42 Zombies in one round of combat). They ended up getting a huge overrun roll and were in position for a rear charge on either my Blood Knights or Lord’s unit on his next turn. I turned them to face it, and proceeded to attempt to Vanhel’s my Knights into his on my magic phase. Unfortunately, I rolled a miscast on my first attempt, and got the one that ends the magic phase. He then got the charge on my Blood Knights, and overran into my Lord’s unit in the flank. He wiped it, so end of game for me. I guess I could have raised Zombie unit after Zombie unit on my flank to hold up the overruns that the Knights were getting, but he was pretty sulky at the start of the game so I really didn’t want to be “that guy”. I also probably relied too much on getting that Vanhel’s through, and so had bad positioning with my Lord’s unit for his overrun. Pretty fun game though, and I got to play next to Driver, who spent half his time at the table and half at the cooler.

The BoB was a great time. Bar one, my opponents were very fun to play against and I really only went up against one really nasty list. Like Ben said, my only gripe would be their comp system. I finished up 2-3-0 with 2 scenarios, not bad for my first big tournament. I wasn’t disappointed with my ranking, as I knew going in that having only half of my army painted was going to lose me a lot of points. I was a little surprised at my low PJ comp, but I guess in the end it's still VC even if I don’t have a dragon, big infantry blocks, or the regen banner. I think the main things I need to work on would be to use my Wraiths better and also to use my magic more efficiently. Big highlights were taking out that Bloodthirster when I thought the game was getting away from me, and seeing Shawn’s amazingly painted and converted army along with the completed Angelic Host.

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