Thursday, August 2, 2012

0 for 2


Actually got in a game last night, two in fact.  One was a Warmahordes game, which ended up as a 35p per player 2 on two game, and a game for our Maurice succession wars campaign.  Neither game ended as I'd hoped, but it was still nice to get a couple of games in.

In the Warmahordes game, I took a 35 point pHexeris list. I ended up taking the following list:

Aptimus Marketh 
Cyclops Savage 
Full Reivers + UA 
Min paingivers 
Extoller soulward 


My ally, Neil, ran a rather cool eMagnus list, a tier variant from No Quarter using a fair whack of Cygnar stuff.  We played against a combined eSeverius / eSkarre force.  My force showed up with a distressing amount of bare metal, but I took some solace in the fact that my Cyclops Savage was finished except for his base.  I imagine he'll get his own post once that's done.


We only got a few turns into the game, what with a fairly complex set up and a couple of new and / or rusty players, but it was enough for me to get a first-hand understanding of why eSkarre + Deathjack is such a frightening proposition.  eSkarre has a number of options for out of activation in her battlegroup.  The impact, coupled with her feat, is to deliver the most offensively-capable 'jack in the game more or less where she wants it, while preventing a coherent response against both herself and the key pieces in her army.  Neil was able to use eMagnus' feat to counter the worst of the effect, but not before the DJ ate my gladiator.  Yeesh!

For the Maurice game, my opponent was the inimitable ernieR, and we began by drawing Plains as our terrain card.  This game ernieR the edge in scouting units, and he won the roll for scouting advantage.  He elected to defend, and we rolled for terrain, ending up with 10 pieces.  I'm wondering if I'd have been better off opting for a smaller number, but the density of terrain offered as many advantages as not.  I set up towns on my side of the board to deny ernieR the option of garrisons, and we ended up with a table who's centre was broken up by a variety of rough ground, with ernieR partially deployed behind a wall.


ernieR's deployment was quite dense - he ended up stacked up behind the objective and the wall, with his cavalry packed in behind his infantry.  My own deployment was probably a mistake - I put a good chunk of my infantry in column, intending to use them as a reserve.


 Past experience has told me the impact of that is to effectively deny me the use of them at later stages
of the battle.  Turns out, experience was correct.


The early stages of the battle went fairly well.  I moved up my cavalry and the infantry on the right.  My plan was to use my cavalry to try knock out the exposed infantry and guns, those not sheltering behind the wall, and then follow up with my infantry to hold the objective.  I opened by playing the "Death of a Hero" card, knocking a few morale points off ernieR's morale, and even remembered to remove it from the game so he couldn't return the favour later!


After that, things started to go downhill.  ernieR's army uses the "Lethal Volleys" national advantage.  This makes it extremely dangerous to get into a firefight / attrition battle against him.  It also makes attacking with infantry dangerous, as it generally ensures he'll have at least one significantly advantageous volley phase before I can come to grips.  As such, I set up my cavalry out of volley range, being sure to outnumber him in at least one combat.  I built up my hand (saving some volley denying and mitigating cards), and brought up the infantry to follow up the cavalry charge.


When I was ready, I sent them in, charging both my guard cavalry and a trained unit against the infantry on the left.  When that didn't work, I was able to mitigate his shooting with cards, and sent them in again.  And again.  Three times, my cavalry charged.  His infantry, despite significant penalties, not only didn't break, they actually out-rallied my cavalry.  It was as if I never charged.  In the end, my cavalry were heavily disrupted, and were sitting in front of a fairly dangerous musket line.


This, in turn, had a fairly predictable outcome.  I lost a unit or two of cavalry, and the rest pulled out.  They'd need time to recover, but in the meantime, maybe the infantry could do what the cavalry couldn't?


Yeah, not so much.  The large field went a fair way towards slowing down my infantry, and posed a problem for my assault as well, as it meant I'd be moving and fighting in rough ground (i.e., taking disruption on the way in, and fighting at a penalty.  ernieR had no problem bringing up his gun line and making things fairly miserable for me as I pondered my options.  The battle turned into a piecemeal firefight - precisely the kind of situation where his advantage in musketry would shine.

At one point, I was able to set up an opportunity, playing the Confusion card to march one of his conscript infantry forward into the ploughed field, opposite my guard infantry.  With the odds significantly in my favour, I hoped to open a hole in his line, and maybe get a chance to turn things around.

Nope.  He managed to roll just enough to avoid being doubled, and it took a round or two of musket fire to finally wear him down.


This also stacked up the disruptions on my units, and gave ernieR time to swing round his infantry and pour fire into my flanks, destroying my guard.


I tried to bring my cavalry back into the game, but ernieR was able to get the angle for a charge, pre-empted my with his own cavalry, and broke the last unit he needed to bring my army down to zero morale.

This one was a bit of a grind.  I'm sure I made some mistakes, but I can't think of any glaring enough to warrant the dunce cap.  There were a number of occasions where I was able to set up advantageous combats, but things just didn't work out.  Sometimes, the fates don't cooperate.  On the plus side, I picked up a new notable, and had one of my surviving units promoted to elite status.  My army is actually better for the defeat.  Next time, ernieR, next time ;)

While we were engaged in gentlemanly combat, there were a couple of other rather eye-candyish games going on at the club, a multi-player SAGA extracaganza, and a spiffy FoW game.  Eye candy follows.  Enjoy.





1 comment:

  1. Two games in one night is a win in my books!

    The Cyclops Savage looks really good. Different shades of white and off white is really tricky to pull off but you've done it.