1.3 Dread Elves vs. Beast Herds

Introduction

Close to the smaller 3000 points battel against UK, we found time for another game shortly before Christmas. This time it was a full 4500 points battle with the current 1.3 rules. The map was randomized and chosen from the map pack.

The Bleak Legion01-dreads

  • Oracle – Army General, two additional spells, Wizard Adept, Path of Alchemy, Wandering Familiar, Talisman of Greater Shielding
  • Cult Priest – Battle Standard Bearer, Divine Altar (Paired Weapons), Cult of Nabh, Stalker’s Standard, Executioner’s Blade
  • 30x Dread Legionnaires – Full Command, Spears, Flame Standard
  • 5x Dark Raiders – Repeater Crossbows
  • 5x Dark Raiders – Repeater Crossbows
  • 10x Repeater Auxiliaries – Musician
  • 5x Dark Acolytes – Champion
  • 5x Dark Acolytes – Champion
  • 20x Executioners – Champion, Musician
  • 5x Harpies
  • Dread Reaper
  • Dread Reaper
  • Hydra

This time it was the flaming combo for me. A lot of magic, a lot of potential fire hits. This made me take an Altar with a Cult Priest on top to guide my Legionnaires into battle. The Hydra was there to protect my back field from ambushers, while the Dread Reapers were tasked to shoot down opponent chaff and the occasional chariot.

Beast Herds02-beasts

  • Beast Chieftain – Battle Standard Bearer, Mithril Mail, Paired Weapons, Throwing Weapons, Totem Bearer
  • Beast Lord – Army General, Beast Axe, Hardened Shield, Heavy Armour, Sprout of Rebirth, Throwing Weapons
  • Beast Chieftain – Ambush, Dragonscale Helm, Heavy Armour, Shield, Throwing Weapons, Totem Bearer
  • 30x Wildhorn Herd – Throwing Weapons, Shields, Full Command
  • 28x Longhorn Herd – Full Command, Great Weapons, War Standard
  • 6x Minotaurs – Full Command, Paired Weapons
  • Raiding Chariot
  • Raiding Chariot
  • Raiding Chariot
  • Jabberwock
  • 25x Wildhorn Herd – Full Command, Throwing Weapons, Paired Weapons, Ambush
  • 5x Centaurs – Champion, Musician, Throwing Weapons, Ambush
  • 5x Centaurs – Champion, Musician, Throwing Weapons, Ambush
  • 5x Feral Hounds
  • 5x Feral Hounds

Terrain, Magic, Deployment03-terrain

Our scenario was counterthrust with breakthrough as second objective. We used a map from the map pack. The randomization gave us a map with two water features.

For spells I rolled 2, 3, 5. Not exactly the best throw. I kept them all and started the game with Molten Copper, Silver Spike and Transmutation to Lead in addition to the double Altered Sight and Ice & Fire from Cosmology on my Dark Acolyte champions.

04-deploymentI was lucky enough to be able to choose the side, so naturally I took the one with the hill. Even more lucky: I was granted first turn, despite a +2 bonus for my opponent on the die roll.

Dread Elf Deployment from left to right: Dark Acolytes, Repeater Auxiliaires, Dread Reaper, Hydra, Dread Reaper, Dread Legionnaires with Divine Altar and Oracle, Executioners behind Harpies behind Dark Raiders, Dark Acolytes, Dark Raiders.

Beast Herd Deployment from left to right: Feral Hounds, Raiding Chariot, Raiding Chariot, Longhorn Herd, Wildhorn Herd, Minotaurs, Raiding Chariot, Feral Hounds, Jabberwock.

Dread Elves – Turn 105-de1

Movement: Not much movement. Basically the troops move into favourable positions for spells and shooting. The Hydra starts watching the back, even though there won’t be coming anything just yet. Notable exception are the Dark Raiders, slipping between the enemy lines and getting themselves into an excellent position.

Magic:6+1, Dread Elves channel. Silver Spike (6+5+2) on a chariot goes through and deals one wound. Fire on the same chariot (5+5+3) is not dispelled (6+3+2+1), but doesn’t do any damage. Altered Sight on Auxiliaries (2+1) fails casting roll.

Shooting:

  • Dark Raiders on Longhorns: Two wounds.
  • Dark Raiders on Hounds: One wound.
  • Repeater Auxiliaries on Chariot: Two wounds.
  • Dread Reaper on Chariot: No wound.
  • Dread Reaper on Chariot: Three wounds. Chariot is killed.

Close Combat: None.

Beast Herds – Turn 106-bh1

Movement: The Beasts move up as quickly as possible. The Hounds prevent any charges or forward movement from the Dark Acolytes.

Magic: 5+1, Dread Elves channel. Clouded Eye on Longhorns (6+5+1). Gnarled Hide on Minotaurs (5+1+1) is dispelled (6+6+6+5+3+1).

Shooting:

  • Wildhorns on Harpies: One wound.

Close Combat: None.

Dread Elves – Turn 207-de2

Movement: The Harpies move back behind the Legionnaires again. The Dark Acolytes on the right charge the Hounds. On the left the Dark Raiders charge the hounds, instead of the Dark Acolytes, so that the Acolytes may move into safety and not get charged by Minotaurs, Chariot or the Jabberwock.

Magic: 4+3, no channel. Silver Spike on Chariot (5+2) deals two wounds. Altered Sight on Minotaurs (6+1) is successful. Ice on Chariot (5+2) is dispelled (6+4+3+1).

Shooting:

  • Dark Raiders on Chariot: No wounds.
  • Repeater Auxiliaries on Chariot: One wound.
  • Dread Reaper on Chariot: Two wounds. Killing it.
  • Dread Reaper on Minotaurs: No wounds.

Close Combat: Dark Raiders deal three wounds to hounds, who flee. The Raiders reform. The Dark Acolytes kill all hounds and reform.

Beast Herds – Turn 208-bh2

Movement: Raiding Chariot on the left attacks the Dark Raiders who flee. The Chariot re-directs on the Dark Acolytes, but fails to achieve the necessary 10+ roll. The fleeing Hounds fail their rally check and run a little further. Ambush is also unlucky for my opponent, only one unit of Centaurs show up. They place themselves in the back of the Executioners. The Jabberwock makes a flanking movement, but his line of sight is not optimal opening up a niche the Acolytes can march through to get behind his troops.

Magic: 2+1, Dread Elves channel. Blooded Horn on Longhorns (5+2). Gnarled Hide (2) fails.

Shooting:

  • Centaurs on Executioners: Two wounds.

Close Combat: None.

Dread Elves – Turn 309-de3

Movement: Executioners successfully charge the Wildhorns on 5+, the stand & shoot deals three wounds. Dark Acolytes charge the Raiding Chariot. The Dark Raiders rally and try to get away from the Jabberwock and behind the Centaurs. The Hydra turns as well. On the right side, the Raiders, Acolytes and Legionnaires surround the Longhorns. The Harpies chaff up the Minotaurs (but seeing it now, the move was illegal, as they landed in a water feature, sorry UK).

Magic: 6+4, no channel. Silver Spike on Centaurs (6+6+4) kills three Centaurs and five Repeater Auxiliaries. The Oracle is lucky and does not suffer Amnesia. Fire (6+2+1) on the Longhorns is dispelled with all six dice. Transmutation of Lead on the Longhorns is successful.

Shooting:

  • Dark Raiders on Longhorns: No wounds.
  • Repeaters on Longhorns: No wounds.
  • Dark Raiders on Centaurs: No wounds.
  • Dread Reaper on Centaurs: Two wounds. Killing them.
  • Dread Reaper on Longhorns: One wound.

Close Combat: Dark Acolytes kill the Raiding Chariot and reform. Executioners kill twelve Wildhorns and suffer two wounds in return. Wildhorns remain steadfast and hold.

Beast Herds – Turn 3

Movement: Longhorns charge Legionnaires. Minotaurs charge Harpies. Jabberwock fails his 8+ charge on the Dark Raiders. Hounds continue fleeing, but the Ambushers now all arrive on the battlefield.

Magic: 6+4, no channel. Gnarled Hide on Longhorns (6+4+2+2). Blooded Horn on Wildhorns (6+5+2+1+1) is dispelled (6+5+4+3+2). Gnarled Hide on Longhorns (6) is not dispelled (2).

Shooting:

  • Centaurs on Dread Reaper: One wound.

Close Combat: Harpies deal one wound on the Minotaurs before being killed. Executioners deal five wounds on the Wildhorns, and receive three in return. The battle is a draw. Longhorns lose nine models but kill seven Legioannires. They hold a -2 leadership test.

Dread Elves – Turn 411-de4

Movement: Dark Acolytes charge the flank of the Longhorns, the Dark Raiders charge the back. The Dark Raiders to the left chaff up the Minotaurs, while the Repeaters flee from the Wildhorns appearing in their back. The Oracle moves out of the unit behind the hill. The Hydra moves in front of the Centaurs to prevent a charge on the Dread Reaper. The Dark Acolytes to the left circle around to be able to charge the Wild Horns in the following turn.

Magic: 5+1, no channel. Silver Spike is cast on the Minotaurs and deals four wounds and makes the Longhorns flammable. Altered Sight on Longhorns (3+1) is dispelled (6+1+1). Altered Sight on Longhorns (2) is unsuccessful.

Shooting:

  • Dread Reaper on Centaurs: No wounds.
  • Dread Reaper on Minotaurs: Three wounds.
  • Hydra on Centaurs: Three wounds.
  • Dark Raiders on Minotaurs: Three wounds.

Close Combat: Executioners only deal one wound on the Wild Horns, but also only receive one. Executioners lose the combat but stay in the battle. Longhorns kill twelve Legionnaires. Legionnaires, Acolytes and Raiders only deal eight wounds themselves. The Longhorns win the combat by one, which sends the Dark Raiders fleeing.

Beast Herds – Turn 412-bh4

Movement: As I killed enough Centaurs, the remaining two Centaurs were not blocked by the Hydra anymore and charge the Dread Reaper. The Minotaurs charge the Dark Raiders and the Wildhorns charge the Repeaters. Not wanting the Wildhorns to charge the Dark Acolytes I accept the chagre rather than flee. The remaining Hound manages to rally.

Magic: 6+1, no channels. Gnarled Hide on Longhorns (5+4+3+1) is not dispelled (3+3+2+2) by one. Gnarled Hide on the Wildhorns (6+5+2) is not dispelled either (4+1).

Shooting: None.

Close Combat:

  • The Dread Reaper crew manages one wound on the Centaurs and suffer one in return. They lose combat by one but stand.
  • Dark Raiders deal one wound on the Minotaurs and get annihilated afterwards, the Minotaurs are forced to overrun.
  • The Executioners deals three wounds to the Wildhorns who also deal three on the Executioners. Again the Executioners lose by one but remain in the fight.
  • The Legionnaires, Acolytes and the BSB on Altar kill all remaining Longhorns. The Beast Herd heroes remain in the fight however.

Game Result

At this point the Beast Herd general waves the white flag, conceding the match, as the next turn would probably see me annihilating both his characters and the Wildhorns which would be flank charged by the Dark Acolytes. Additionally the Hydra is still there to mop up the Centaur and help against the ambushing Wildhorns.

After Battle Analysis

Not a lot new things to learn. While the flaming combo is nice and all my investment in magic didn’t even closely bring me, what a Dread Prince and more combat units would have given me. I invested about 600-700 points in magic. A Dread Prince (Killer Prince build) in the Legionnaires together with Crown of Scorn would have given me the ability to easily kill the Beast Herd characters and wipe out the Longhorns afterwards. The Crown would have helped me to dispel a critical Gnarled Hide without relying on a dice roll (which failed in turn 4). Additionally I would not have blown up half of my Repeater Auxiliaries. And all this while my opponent didn’t even bring a Dispel Scroll himself.

On the Beast Herds side, I think you should always bring the Hunting Call, it could have made a whole lot of a difference and maybe turned the whole game around, if all ambushers appear on turn 2. As it was, it was easy to pick off the Centaurs arriving alone on turn 2.

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