Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Background: You're a WHAT wizard?

With a force hastily assembled, Sir Ulric set forth to reach Mount Bloodhorn. He had a lore of life wizard in tow, who promised to use his ways to draw his men from the jaws of death and make them far harder to kill. After a couple of unsuccessful battles this sounded good to Sir Ulric.

Some of the Mad Monks nutters had gone on ahead, and secured themselves a watchtower. But with Dark Elves standing in their way, Sir Ulric wanted to claim the strategically important tower, besieged by Corsairs as he arrived. "Support them" he yelled.

"Won't take but a moment my lord" proclaimed his life wizard... he swept his arms wide, uttered some words of power, vines starting to caress his body and lift him... followed by a soft fizzle and nothing. "Er... I don't think I can help them just yet my lord"

The screams of the dying echoed across teh field as the Corsairs took the tower. "It's a good thing those idiots go seeking death" stated Ulric "Now give me some support as I try to take back that tower.

"Won't take but a moment my lord" proclaimed his life wizard... he swept his arms wide, uttered some words of power, vines starting to caress his body and lift him... followed by a soft fizzle and nothing. "Er..."

Half of Ulrics knights were butchered as their armour seemed to fail them uncharacteristically. They were then charged in the flank, but the fighters paused as Sir Ulric and the enemy BSB challenged each other. Both had flaming weapons. Both flaming weapons bounced off each others flame-retardant magical armour. The fight progressed as the swordsmen accompanying the life wizard eventually took the tower. Meanwhile the steam tank shuffled around to keep it's immense bulk between the enemy knights and the important fight near the tower.

As the last of Sir Ulrics knights were butchered (again unsupported by the wizard of Life) Sir Ulrics flaming weapon petered out... allowing him to start to beat the enemy BSB in earnest and get the upper hand. Just as it looked like the battle was won, a voice issued from the tower "I think I have the hang of this now Sir" followed swiftly by a loud explosion, that almost but not quite drowned out the sound of most of a regiment dying a swift and brutal death. "Er..."

Luckily the enemy decided the tower was a lost cause and left the field, back to their Arks. "Well you were bloody useful weren't you?" accused Sir Ulric

"I did manage to fix that leaky pipe on the Steam tank my lord... you see I took to the colleges of Magic but my dad used to fix peoples outhouses, so I know a little about pipes and stuff..."

"Well at least you have some uses, come on"

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The survivors from the watchtower debacle trudged up toi Mount Bloodhorn to find the delay had been costly. There were others already there. Ogres and Orcs were besieging High Elves and... those damn lizards!

A timely intervention from Ulric, the Steam tank and the handgunners saw off two assaulting elements from the flank of the fortress, along with their support artillery. They positioned themselves to releive the siege at the front gate, but the mortars had more ambitious ideas... they lofted a couple of shots which broke the resolve of the ogres attacking the opposite flank. With the attack in disarray the Forces of Disorder fled the field, and the Forces of Order decided they'd all taken enough of a licking for one day, and withdrew to return later.

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Several hours later, a solitary High Elf, covered in dirt, blood and grime, emerged from the mines beneath the fortress. He planted a flag, claiming the fortress on behalf of his army which had been massacred below. His general was missing and his friends were dead, but somehow they'd inexplicably won the day...

Sunday, 19 February 2012

The thirteenth tribe

Well, Winds of War has been and gone and we had a respectable showing it has to be said.

There were many compliments for my BSG themed force, along with questions of "What next?" (And admittedly to that question thus far I do not have a definitive answer!) and I was proud to be given an honourable mention in both Best Painted and Fergus (which went to two "characters" who, quite frankly, dressed as members of the races they were fielding...)

Game 1

Up against Orks/Dark Eldar. Voidraven bomber, Nob bikerz, couple venoms. Quite brutal. Game was kill points. I thought we started off ok, we put a few wounds in amongst the nobz, were a bit annoyed to see the venoms and voidraven making far too many flickerfield saves (the voidraven frustratingly double sixing two penetrating hits) which of course came back to haunt us when the very next turn the voidraven unleashed hell on the tau. 43 wounds later, yeah, that squad is dead. The wraithguard then opened up on the nob bikers, and did a measly 1 wound. And then found themselves *just* out of charge range, meaning he got the charge on me. My guys fluffed their attacks, his powerfists tore me to shreads, and the game was over bar the counting really. We were tabled a couple turns later. Bad start to the tournament.

At this point we had some time to kill so I wandered around the prospective opponents. I counted two voidraven bombers, several multi venom lists, 2 nob bikers, and three thunderwolves. Out of 14 teams (thus 28 armies) the cheese content has certainly increased since I started playing here...

Game 2

Game two was an objective based mission. Basically whichever team could get more scoring units into the 12" of the opponents table edge (along a lengthways table) was the winner. Between us Ken and I had three scoring units. We faced off against... a guard/guard infantry platoon list, with 110 men forming 12 scoring units. Ah...

With the fire warriors and one team of suits hugging cover to plaster shots as they ran towards our lines, I used my wraithguard and vypers with crisis suit support to blast a hole in the flank. The idea was the smaller squad of fire warriors would hustle through allowing my wraithguard to turn back and continue piling shots into the bulk of the guard force. However an early failed morale test put paid to that idea - the squad rallied, but the run distance and the turn of lost movement meant they would never make it. With my wraithguard broken through and heading for the finish line with nothing in their way, we had to ensure that the opposition couldn't do the same to us. I used my vipers to block lines of advance and slow them down, bunching them up nicely for Kens crisis suits to roast with flamy goodness. One very depleted squad made it into our lines, but was rebuffed by the fire warriors. My the end of turn 5, we had a scoring unit in their zone, and the only thing they had left was a rallied and battered unit about where they started from. We didn't bother rolling for a turn 6, this was clearly ours.



Game 3

THis was dawn of war multiple objectives against Tau (3 sniper teams, two fire warrior teams) and space wolves (grey hunters in rhino, plus the dreaded thunder wolves) With five objectives to claim and each side having 3 scoring units, this was a close match. We deployed first securing the centre ground in cover on an objective. The thunder wolves advanced tentatively. For two turns both sides played a cautious game, them not wanting to enter range of my wraithcannons, and me not wanting to be assaulted. They have fleet and a 12" charge, so the advantage was theirs, but there was a fair bit of difficult ground to cover...

This game took a turn for the worse when kens crisis team legged it after receiving sniper fire. That reduced the amount of firepower we could put out. And then the thunderwolves chanced their luck through the terrain... and the great shaggy dog in the sky smiled on them, getting a 5 for fleet and for the charge. They were in. Game over, I thought. But no. They fluffed their attacks. I got two wounds through their armour, they got none through mine. In swings the thunder hammer. 2 hits. 1 kill. I could have taken an inv save against it on the warlock but didn't want to risk the wraithsight at a bad time so took the hit and won by 1. And the thunderwolves duly fled. I failed to catch them, and some more shots and some conveniently positioned crisis suits kept them running almost to the byline. They rallied, and attempted a late contesting of our objective. Luckily for us there was a turn 6, and my wraithguard blew them away. We then survived the withering hail of fire to hold on to our two poorly defended objectives for the draw. A good game, good fun.

Game 4

Objectives again, all 4 players deploying in 4 corners trying to claim your objective from between the enemy camps. We were up against mech guard, and eldar (war walkers and vypers in abundance) Ken dropped a crisis team on the left which traded shots with the vypers and warwalkers and kept them busy for most of the game. Meanwhile my vipers did sterling work taking out the enemy artillery pieces, with one surviving the chimera retaliation, which then went on to peg two more chimeras. I had worried in this game those chimeras could put scoring units in our lines early and cause us problems, but I think our opponents dallied too much with them. By turn 4 they were just trying to dig my wraithguard out of their lines or contest for the draw. Not an easy task to dig out wraithguard it has to be said. We won this game quite well.



So with 2 wins, a draw and a loss I presume we sit mid table - considering we were using two of the oldest codexes out there and up against venoms, voidravens, nob bikers and thunderwolves, I think we did quite well. Ken does talk of using a more competitive list sometime, but unless he can come up with a good theme behind a cheese list I aint gonna be taking one. Though he has talked of racing teams... Nob bikers, with grot pit crew? maybe...

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Sometimes you have to roll a hard six...

And that's precisely what I plan to do this weekend, at Winds of War. Though if it comes up easy, I'll take that too...

In the meantime, here's my little force for this years combat patrol event. I'm using Eldar this time.

10 Wraithguard - 350
Warlock, upgraded to spiritseer, given destructor - 41

vyper, shurikan cannon - 50
vyper, shurikan cannon - 50

491


Backstory...

Leaving untold destruction in her wake, Spiritseer Syx must now make some desperate alliances if she wishes to make it through to a new home.

Her stalwart companions always have her back, but those Vyper jocks areless of a certainty. Only time will tell if it was a good idea to bring them along...

Follow That Fortress!

With no one to stand in their way the good men of the Empire planted the flag of Gelderland and claimed the territory from the lizards, before the cold blooded fiends could even react. As the men were readying to move on, an ominous shape drifted overhead.

"The fortress. it heads for the marshes!" cried a squire

"Then it is out of reach for now" stated Sir Ulric "It would be suicide to enter those Marshes in anything less than high summer!"

Later that afternoon though, a strange wind blew from the West. "The winds" cried the various wizards accompanying the search "The wiiiinds"

Just as Sir Ulric was about to say he'd heard enough about their bloody wind problems, that dark ominous shape passed back overhead, heading into the heart of the lizards territory. It hovered, almost within a weeks march of his current position. All that stood in his way, the heart of the lizards empire. Sir Ulric suppressed an involuntary shudder at the manner of icky creatures he would no doubt encounter, mounted his horse, and pausing briefly to whisper "nothing ventured nothing gained" gave the order - the army would march on the lizard capitol. And bring all the spellcasters they could recruit en route with them.

Correspondance

Greetings Dark Kin of the Elven Kind,
May the ties of animosity be the ties that bind,
I pen this ballad on behalf of my master,
Whose first battle in the campaign was somewhat a disaster.

We've noticed you tracking us along the coast,
We're not sure why you hate us the most,
But we have heard word that you are fighting the toad,
And in the downfall of lizards, we shall share the load.

In our last battle our lord was unseated,
by the sorceress doings of a toad most conceited,
We have made deals of a most malicious artifice,
For that toad we have prepared, a blood sacrifice!

But of course for this curse to take hold,
Someone most spill that blood that runs cold,
As it is you who faces the one we despise,
We must offer you a bounty, to ensure his demise.

Take Toad out of the battle, and win lose or draw,
We shall pay thee a bounty, a trophy of war,
Give us our attempt to shuffle him off this mortal coil,
And a family heirloom will be yours, to keep or despoil.

I know what your type are like, so the choice of heirloom will be ours,
I'll send it with a messenger, some chocolates and flowers,
If you don't like the heirloom I'm sure the messenger will do,
In the meantime enjoy the bearer of this ballad, to entertain you.


General Wilde.

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General Wilde,

Firstly my thanks for the messenger - he entertained my troops for a time, I do certainly hope there will be more.

This....ballad...must seem intriguing to lesser races such as yours, but please rest assured that if I ever have to spend valuable time and effort in deciphering another I will personally administer The Thousand Cuts of Khaine upon your weak flesh.

As for this Toad, rest assured that plans are in place that guarantee his demise, my sorceress' have made some promising pledges to me that he shall fall.....if not, well that's another pleasure your meagre kind will not understand until it is visited upon you.

Anarian Hearthunter
Sent from my BlackBerry® smartphone



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Well apart from the obvious fact that Dark Elves are clearly "with it" when it comes to new technology, it is good to see the Blood In The Badlands campaign kicking up some in-character interactions.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Who Left That Root There?

"Onward" yelled Sir Ulric as the enemy drew into sight "Onward to vic..."

And that was the last that was heard of Sir Ulric as his horse foundered on the magically charged ground. His knights thundered on and held themselves to reasonable account, and the artillery fire from the common soldiery was assisting the noble cause... until an unassailable threat from orbit wiped out the entire artillery encampment. The life wizard helped the knights as long as he could, and even managed to make the enemy leader founder on the same magically charged ground (losing a revered item as his plinth came crashing down to earth) before several simultaneous charges scattered his band of warriors to the four winds. Clearly they were in the wrong place, at the hands of some very bad intelligence.

The army survivors mustered away from the battlefield, and the next day Sir Ulric joined them. He looked somewhat dazed. "Right" he said "Let's try that again shall we?"

"But Sire, what of reports that the Fortress is to the North? We hear of rebellions, castles crumbling, and great portents of doom as all armies head to the centre of the Badlands"

"Yes, but we also heard the Fortress was up river, and that turned out to be tosh didn't it? Those lizards unhorsed me without me having even a chance to fight. It is my honour that must be... honoured... and as such we have to fight again. And beat them this time. And win. And... er... yes, that'll cover it. Let's get ready, for on the morrow we march North!"

"But the lizards are to the South and East"

"I knew that! That's what I meant. WessssssSouth it is then. South. We go South."