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Army Blog - The Dark Reapers - Dragon Lord Musings 
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Highborn
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Location: Trondheim, Norway
It is true that the Reapers don't kill that many Ogres, but keep in mind that one Maneater with brace of pistols is 62 points on his own. The ogre player can't afford to lose these easily. 4 Reapers can cause 8 wounds to a unit, given one casting of Soulblight. This means that if he did not destroy the Reapers early, I could pound a lot of shooting into the Maneaters for example, which also would have had the added effect of making Soulblight a must-dispel spell, and there are already enough must-dispel spells in the Dark Elf Army.

As for the Cauldron, I think it is approximately a 10% chance of it dying to one cannonball.

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Fri Apr 25, 2014 6:47 am
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Slave (off the Altar)

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Thanks for a great game :-).
These are my notes from the game , lifted straight from the notebook. They have a rather negative focus. That's just an attempt to learn from the mistakes made. There was also some brilliant moves, but the mistakes are easier to remember.

Deployment
Placed chaff first, then deployed behind the impassable. It might look obvious in hindsight, but I don't think Dark Reaper was certain I would deploy there until later. That's why the three ogres ended up on their own in the middle of the board. They were bait, and then the DE advanced so quickly that they were unable to reach safety in time. I sacrificed ten gnoblars also on my left flank.

All sabretusk were in hard cover or out of sight. It was still risky with tusks in the middle of the army, but I know that if they're out on their own they will be killed fast by elven shooting.

My plan was to take out RBTs first with fireball, cannons and MEs while LBs shot fast cav.

Rusty Mistake 1:
I realized a little late that my rightmost unit of ten gnoblars who were deployed to shield ME's from first turn shooting would panic two STs if they all died. Duly noted for later. If done againg, I would probably park STs all the way at the back instead and trust that no Warlocks would dare to go within 18", as that would bring a lot of firepower down on them.


Turn 1
Dark Reaper mistake #1: Using shades as redirectors for ME. I was happy to charge and kill those instead of having to shoot them with a much more uncertain outcome.

Turn 2
Dark Reaper (DR) Mistake 2: Forgot the forest while placing shades for shooting ogres.
DR mistake 3: Got greedy with soulblight, fails to cast on 2D6.
Rusty mistake 2: Forgot to dispel throne of vines with spare power dice.
Rusty mistake 3: Forgot to block Cauldrons charge to ME even though the gnoblars could have done it.
Rusty mistake 4: Used gnoblars early as a redirector on WE. They would end up being swift reformed away from and out of the game.
Rusty mistake 5: ST sent to block WE are in hard cover to the front, but not the flank where one RBT can see.

Turn 3
DR mistake 4: Forgot to move the sorceress
DR mistake 5: Cast soulblight again with too few dice and fail to cast. Would have been better spent on more doombolt power.

The fleeing gnoblars here that ended up blocking the witch elves. I don't think we realized that the WE could just about see the fleeing gnoblars and a charge would force another flee. Noted for another time.

DR mistake 6: choosing to hold for the sorceress vs the sabretusk, then fleeing from the gutstar. Should have been flee/flee or hold/hold. I didn't really wanted to advance far with the gutstar anyway, a failed charge was just right.

Turn 4
I learned about the cauldron frenzy bound spell and rerolling to would within 6". Nasty.

DR mistake 7: Used 2x4 PD on Doombolt when he could have used 2X5
DR mistake 8: Casting frenzy on the shades means they can't flee from the bruiser BSB charging down on them.
Rusty mistake 6: Too few dice on fireball, fail to cast.
Rusty mistake 7: Charging shades with bruiser. They weren't worth that much, and I should have realized putting him out in the open meant he would be shot down whether he killed the shades or not.
DR mistake 9: Forgot that gutstar could charge the cauldron when it's on it's own.


Turn 5
Rusty mistake 8: Did not move Ironblasters forward in range of last RBT and possible charge on warlocks.

Turn 6
Rusty mistake 9: Risky charge with general bruiser on warlocks, when the bruiser had few wounds left. Lucky to make it alive.



Lessons learned
-Warlocks should have been a higher priority for ranged. That's hard because they were put in good cover most of the time, but removing just one unit would have the number of doombolts. At the end they both had one model remaining. Better prioritizing could have eliminated one unit.

-VS a deathstar it might be better to skip the tactical deployment and just shove everything in a corner, then castle up behind well deployed redirectors. Gnoblars in particular must be deployed in the right place to work effectively.

- Impassables or hills is very important for hiding sabretusks and cannons behind.

-Don't deploy gnoblars within 6" of sabretusks again if the enemy has the means to remove them.

-Cauldron on its own is dangerous

-Leadbelchers kill fast cav extremely well, but break to pretty much anything in combat. Keep BSB/general nearby.


Sun Apr 27, 2014 8:56 pm
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Slave (off the Altar)

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Askador:
My numbers show a 11% chance to one-shot a cauldron. Keep in mind that failure to kill it is wasted firepower. Lifebloom will heal wounds on it for "free". Cannons are better spent killing those units who kill ogres at a distance.


Sun Apr 27, 2014 8:57 pm
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Interesting to see the other perspective from a game. Fairly similar analysis however.

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Sun Apr 27, 2014 9:21 pm
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Highborn
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I was the organiser at a local tornament this weekend and it was a blast! I will hopefully get to write a little more about it on here, and preferably sooner rather than later.

I have a game against Empire lined up for Saturday and I have made a few chances to my list. I have dropped the Crown of Command for Dawnstone and given the SS Dragonbane Gem. I have also dropped the Hag's equipment and opted to get a few more warlocks in instead.

Dreadlord, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Giant Blade, Enchanted Shield, Dawnstone (General) - 244pts
Supreme Sorceress on Dark Pegasus, Lvl4 Life, Cloak of Twilight, Dispel Scroll, Dragonbane Gem - 350pts
Master, Heavy Armour, Shield, Sea Dragon Cloak, Ring of Hotek (BSB) - 157pts
Death Hag on Cauldron of Blood - 275pts
Characters = 1026pts

34 Witch Elves, Full Command, Razor Standard - 449pts
5 Dark Riders - 80pts
5 Dark Riders - 80pts
Core = 609pts

4 Reaper Bolt Throwers - 280pts
5 Shades - 80pts
5 Shades - 80pts
Special = 440pts

6 Doomfire Warlocks - 150pts
7 Doomfire Warlocks - 175pts
Rare = 325pts

Thoughts?

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Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:32 pm
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Highborn
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The Empire list I am playing against looks like this btw.

1 Arch Lector @ 223.0 Pts
General; Barding; Prayers of Sigmar; Heavy Amour; Warhorse Crown of Command Talisman of
Preservation [45.0] Enchanted Shield [5.0] Biting Blade [10.0]

1 Wizard Lord of the Jade Order (Life) @ 294.0 Pts
Barding; Magic Level 4; Lore of Life; Warhorse Dispel Scroll [25.0] Obsidian Lodestone [45.0]

1 Captain of the Empire @ 153.0 Pts
Barding; Great Weapon; Full Plate Armor; Battle Standard; Warhorse
Dawn Stone [25.0] Ironcurse Icon [5.0] Dragonhelm [10.0]

2x1 Master Engineer @ 65.0 Pts

11 Knights of the Inner Circle @ 340.0 Pts
Barding; Lance; Full Plate Armor; Shield; Standard; Musician; Champion; Warhorse
The Steel Standard [35.0]

2x5 Knightly Orders @ 120.0 Pts
Barding; Lance; Full Plate Armor; Shield; Musician; Warhorse

10 Spearmen @ 85.0 Pts
Spear; Light Armour

5 Det - Archer @ [35.0] Pts

5 Demigryph Knights @ 325.0 Pts
Barding; Lance; Shield; Standard; Musician
Banner of Swiftness [15.0]

1 Great Cannon @ 120.0 Pts

1 Steam Tank @ 250.0 Pts

2x1 Helblaster Volley Gun @ 120.0 Pts

Total Army Cost: 2400.0

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Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:35 pm
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First thoughts are that your DR's are really rather naked. No shield, rxb's or musicians. Makes them really very flimsy and weak.
Might be better to optimise their potential. Same with shades, the weapons options are good for them, so if you plan to use them as warmachine hunters again, the points spend is worth it.
Overall, list may struggle against that Empire army. That is alot of armour and warmachines to deal with, but not alot in the list to deal with it.

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Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:12 pm
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Slave (off the Altar)

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Interesting matchup, unfortunately with the edge to the Dark Elves. I wan't to see your army die ;)

Empire: 8 drops
DE: 7 drops
Hellblaster drop 7
Witches drop 6.
Just sayin. It should be possible to get witches in range of hellblasters, unless they hide in a corner. Could well take a turn or two of moving for the hellblasters, and by then the witches can if they like reform and march away.
What are the numbers on hellblaster shots?

Dwellers will really make a difference here. One idea for the empire genereal could be to place the lvl 4 in a small knight unit behind ICK or DGK. That way, the inevitable miscast from Ring of Hotek (40 or so % at 5 dice) when dwellering witches won't kill off the knightstar as well. Also, the lvl4 will still have hard cover once a knight or two dies and the RBTs start shooting.

Cannon vs cauldron: not good. Cannon vs RBT: A lot better.


Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:22 pm
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Highborn
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Amboadine wrote:
First thoughts are that your DR's are really rather naked. No shield, rxb's or musicians. Makes them really very flimsy and weak.
Might be better to optimise their potential. Same with shades, the weapons options are good for them, so if you plan to use them as warmachine hunters again, the points spend is worth it.
Overall, list may struggle against that Empire army. That is alot of armour and warmachines to deal with, but not alot in the list to deal with it.


The DRs are rather naked indeed. I find they work quite ok for what I need them to do, but I will consider dropping a Witch Elf to give both units shield. I am so strapped for points, I don't think I can find the ones needed to give the Shades better weapons though, even though I really like them with extra hand weapons. They mostly just shot though, so it is not like it is the biggest of deals.

I am not really that concerned about cannons. They do one thing really well, and that is taking out RBTs, however, the Helblasters really worry me. I should be able to kill them with shades/DR/Warlocks/Dwellers though.

As for armour. 1+ is not good for me at all, but the Dreadlord mitigates that problem somehow. Do the math for Demis against Witches btw, you will be surprised.

Anyway, I really appreciate the feedback and you have given me something to think about. :)

rusty_ wrote:
Interesting matchup, unfortunately with the edge to the Dark Elves. I wan't to see your army die ;)

Empire: 8 drops
DE: 7 drops
Hellblaster drop 7
Witches drop 6.
Just sayin. It should be possible to get witches in range of hellblasters, unless they hide in a corner. Could well take a turn or two of moving for the hellblasters, and by then the witches can if they like reform and march away.
What are the numbers on hellblaster shots?

Dwellers will really make a difference here. One idea for the empire genereal could be to place the lvl 4 in a small knight unit behind ICK or DGK. That way, the inevitable miscast from Ring of Hotek (40 or so % at 5 dice) when dwellering witches won't kill off the knightstar as well. Also, the lvl4 will still have hard cover once a knight or two dies and the RBTs start shooting.

Cannon vs cauldron: not good. Cannon vs RBT: A lot better.


You always want to see me die. :(

Life is going to help me a lot in this matchup, as Flesh to Stone and Dwellers are must-dispels. I already predict that I will only get one of them :P

I need to find some numbers on Helblaster damage to learn more about how to deal with it.

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Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:48 pm
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I have decided to try and listen to reason. This is the newest iteration of the list. I removed the Dragonbane Gem and two witches to give one of the DR units crossbows and both units shield. I am now completely capped on shooting.

Dreadlord, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Giant Blade, Enchanted Shield, Dawnstone (General) - 244pts
Supreme Sorceress on Dark Pegasus, Lvl4 Life, Cloak of Twilight, Dispel Scroll - 345pts
Master, Heavy Armour, Shield, Sea Dragon Cloak, Ring of Hotek (BSB) - 157pts
Death Hag on Cauldron of Blood - 275pts
Characters = 1021pts

32 Witch Elves, Full Command, Razor Standard - 427pts
5 Dark Riders, Shields, Repeater Crossbows - 100pts
5 Dark Riders, Shields - 85pts
Core = 612pts

4 Reaper Bolt Throwers - 280pts
5 Shades - 80pts
5 Shades - 80pts
Special = 440pts

6 Doomfire Warlocks - 150pts
7 Doomfire Warlocks - 175pts
Rare = 325pts

What do you guys think?

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Thu May 01, 2014 3:58 pm
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Hello there,

My first impressions of the list is that you have one large, well protected death star. Against many opponents you are going to walk straight through them, without batting an eyelid. Many of the MSU lists are going to feed the unit 50-100pt redirectors, taking your unit a turn or two to get back into the game afterwards. I am not saying that this is a bad thing, especially as the traditional methods of dealing with this other than redirectors is Dwellers, etc. Which are nullified by MR3 and the ring of hotek. (2+ ward on all Witch Elf/Hag models and 3++ on everyone else).

Personally, I would be tempted to shave off 10 of the Witch Elves and put them in a second unit, (Possibly with the Banner of Eternal Flame) to go hunting and so that your force is less concentrated. I note that this is my personal preference, and I am by no means an authority on the use of Dark Elves.

As for the remainder of the list:

Shades: Good.
RBT's: Good.
Dark riders: Good, given the comp. restrictions.
Characters: Good.
Rare: Good. - How are you intending to run these? One rank or two? (2 ranks of 3, [or one of 4 and one of 3 for the unit of 7], A rank of 5 and a second rank of the remainder?)

In summary:

It'll be a good measure of how you use chaff and chaff-clearing units to control the board.
I can see that a Dwarven gun line is going to cause substantial problems, (especially if they bring several Flame Cannons) due to your combat block being focussed in one place. If you can kill the guns quickly there's less of an issue, but this isn't always easy.

I'd be interested in hearing a theoretical play against a couple of styles of army, and how you believe you'd deal with certain units.

1) Demon Prince
2) Bunkered Dwarven Line
3) Opposing death-stars, such as the High Elf White Lion bus with their special character lady in it.


Thu May 01, 2014 4:20 pm
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Highborn
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Thanks for the input! :)

I think you may underestimate just how much shooting I have though. Reapers and Shades are GREAT at clearing out chaff, as are warlocks both with magic and close combat. In my last game, the reason I lost was that I did not play very well. His chaff was gone by the end of the game, and so were one of his bigger units. The other side of the coin is of course that the Witch Elves don't give away many points either, as enemies are extremely reluctant to attack them with anything. They also aren't that weak against shooting as their 5++ helps quite a lot, I can also cast Flesh to Stone on them if it is absolutely needed.

I don't really like having another unit of Witch Elves. I think the opponent will just shoot at these first and kill them, and they are more difficult to protect with spells.

I usually just run the Warlocks however I feel like at the time. They are fast cavalry, so they are pretty flexible. The Daemon Prince is usually killed by RBTs, but in the unusual case that he gets into combat (with what?), he will probably be in poor condition and get struck down by my Dreadlord. Also remember that he cannot be fully tooled up under the comp restrictions. On the same note, I cannot run into the High Elf Queen either. Dwarfs are a bit more tricky, but I think I can handle them. :)

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Thu May 01, 2014 4:48 pm
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Dreadlord Veritas wrote:
Hello there,

My first impressions of the list is that you have one large, well protected death star.


...and this is why this list is so strong! As long as this list is considered a a deathstar, it will play very well and usually win big. The inherent fault of thinking of this list this way is that it`s everything apart from the Deathstar which scores the points! There are so many threats here that are hard to deal with, and by simply focusing the Deathstar many armies will find that the rest of the list tears them apart. There`s a lot of shooting, 2 strong magic missiles, soulblight to aid shooting and lastly, the dreaded Dwellers Below.

As for your suggested opponents:

Dreadlord Veritas wrote:
1) Demon Prince
2) Bunkered Dwarven Line
3) Opposing death-stars, such as the High Elf White Lion bus with their special character lady in it.


1) Shoot him. T5 W4? Colour me unimpressed. RxBs remove charmed Shield, then there are Doom Bolts / Single Bolts / Soublight all the way from here to kingdom come.
2) Shoot them / charge them. Even 10 Witchelves alive by the time you reach combat will tear the Dwarfs apart.
3) Not applicable as this is an ETC list. Even if it were, Dwellers is huge against that list. Witch Elves will absolutely murder it as well, and a High Elf List can NOT compete with this in terms of board control (at least not such a list. A Star Dragon variant might be, but even then it`s tough).

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Fri May 02, 2014 10:46 am
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Slave (off the Altar)

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@Dark reaper
Off course I want to see your army die, payback's a biatch ;)

Seriously though I think Empire struggles a lot in this matchup. Hellblaster kill 4 withces on average, each. Not that scary really. It's the same as the two games we had. If the HBVG shoot wiches the rest of your army will tear his apart.

Best of luck to both sides.


Sat May 03, 2014 10:15 am
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This Saturday, I had a game against Niblit's Empire Army.

My list:

Dreadlord, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Giant Blade, Enchanted Shield, Dawnstone (General) - 244pts
Supreme Sorceress on Dark Pegasus, Lvl4 Life, Cloak of Twilight, Dispel Scroll, Dragonbane Gem - 350pts
Master, Heavy Armour, Shield, Sea Dragon Cloak, Ring of Hotek (BSB) - 157pts
Death Hag on Cauldron of Blood - 275pts
Characters = 1026pts

34 Witch Elves, Full Command, Razor Standard - 449pts
5 Dark Riders - 80pts
5 Dark Riders - 80pts
Core = 609pts

4 Reaper Bolt Throwers - 280pts
5 Shades - 80pts
5 Shades - 80pts
Special = 440pts

6 Doomfire Warlocks - 150pts
7 Doomfire Warlocks - 175pts
Rare = 325pts

His list:

1 Arch Lector @ 223.0 Pts
General; Barding; Prayers of Sigmar; Heavy Amour; Warhorse Crown of Command Talisman of
Preservation [45.0] Enchanted Shield [5.0] Biting Blade [10.0]

1 Wizard Lord of the Jade Order (Life) @ 294.0 Pts
Barding; Magic Level 4; Lore of Life; Warhorse Dispel Scroll [25.0] Obsidian Lodestone [45.0]

1 Captain of the Empire @ 153.0 Pts
Barding; Great Weapon; Full Plate Armor; Battle Standard; Warhorse
Dawn Stone [25.0] Ironcurse Icon [5.0] Dragonhelm [10.0]

2x1 Master Engineer @ 65.0 Pts

11 Knights of the Inner Circle @ 340.0 Pts
Barding; Lance; Full Plate Armor; Shield; Standard; Musician; Champion; Warhorse
The Steel Standard [35.0]

2x5 Knightly Orders @ 120.0 Pts
Barding; Lance; Full Plate Armor; Shield; Musician; Warhorse

10 Spearmen @ 85.0 Pts
Spear; Light Armour

5 Det - Archer @ [35.0] Pts

5 Demigryph Knights @ 325.0 Pts
Barding; Lance; Shield; Standard; Musician
Banner of Swiftness [15.0]

1 Great Cannon @ 120.0 Pts

1 Steam Tank @ 250.0 Pts

2x1 Helblaster Volley Gun @ 120.0 Pts

Deployment

We roll up a table from last year's ETC at random and get number 3. This means that we had to improvise somewhat with regards to hills. The hills on the RoB board are not hills in this game, while the book on my side of the table and the forest on his without any trees are.

I won the roll-off and chose the side with the ruins. I simply could not allow him to place war machines there. I was extremely happy with deployment. Everything was outside HBVG range, except for the Shades on the left flank, who would undoubtely dispatch his rightmost HBVG in turn 2. I placed the Shades 6.1" away from each other, so they wouldn't panic if one of them were destroyed. I finish deploying first and grab first turn. My spell selection is also great with Flesh to Stone, Regrowth, Throne of Vines and Dwellers. His lvl4 doesn't get Flesh to Stone, which is a huge boon.

Image

Turn 1

I move cautiously forward on my right flank. I am really not liking his small knight unit on my right flank as the only thing able to deal with them are RBTs.

Magic is 3v2, which was not good, as I really needed a decent phase to establish an early lead. I manage to get Throne of Vines through, but he dispels Flesh to Stone.

In shooting, one of the Shade units kill the master Engineer standing next to the Helblaster, while the other Shades manages to do two wounds (!) to the Helblaster itself. I decide to try and pick off the last wound with my left RBT, but it doesn't do anything. The other three RBTs combine to do one wound to the small knight unit. If I could just kill them or make them panic, I would have free reign on both flanks. Dark Riders misses everything.

Image

He shuffles his lines a little, moving the Demigryphs so that my Shades can't charge past them into the cannon.

Magic is 6v5 and he tries for Dwellers on the Witches. This is extremely risky, as he has a roughly 40% chance of miscasting and not that good of a chance of actually getting the spell off without IFing. He manages to beat the casting value though and I have to use my scroll. He fails to dispel Throne of Vines with his last dice.

His cannon and Steam Tank kills one Reaper each. The Helblasters kill four warlocks and four Shades, panic is passed on both of them.

Image

Turn 2

I charge the Helblaster with my Shades and move the Warlocks up into the face of the other one, out of LoS of his knights, for a next turn charge. My lone Shade move behind the Demis to threaten the cannon.

Magic is 5v3 and I fail to cast Dwellers. He dispels Throne of Vines.

Every shooting attack I have miss.

He shuffles around a bit and sends his 5-man knight unit even closer to my two remaining bolt throwers.

For magic he gets 6v5 and he manages to cast Dwellers without miscasting and without me being able to stop it...18 Witch Elves die. The Helblaster kills only one Warlock, which is great, as I don't have to use my DR to charge the Helblaster. The archers kill one of the DR and the Cannon kills another Reaper.

Image

Turn 3

The Warlocks charge the Helblaster and the Witch Elves tries to go for a 11" charge on the Helblaster, figuring that I would be steadfast for the first rounds against his Knights anyway and that I could chaff up his Demis if needed. I roll a 2 and a 1. Too bad. The lone Shade charges the cannon. Best case scenario, I kill him or I hold up his cannon for a turn.

In the magic phase I manage to get Throne of Vines through, but I fail to cast Regrowth on 3 dice. The Reaper misses again and is now surely dead, but the Dark Riders manage to kill the archers.

In combat, the Warlocks "easily" (they did exactly three wounds and it came down to the last horse attack) dispatch the Helblaster and overrun into the Engineer. The Shade dies to the cannon.

Then something amazing happens. My BSB is attacked by Witches, takes three wounds and I roll a double 1. He is dead...

He charges his Steam Tank into my Witch Elves and the last remaining RBT with his knights. He rolls low for magic and only gets three dice, but he managed to put Throne of Vines up. In combat, the Steam Tank kills 7 WE from impact hits and takes four in return from the Dreadlord and the WE. I am steadfast and hold. My Warlocks fail to kill his Master Engineer, which is horrible. Now I can't use them to redirect and he can just charge me with both Demis and Knights next turn!

Image

Turn 4

My Dark Riders charge the cannon.

I finally get a good roll for magic, but he unfortunately still has his scroll, something that will surely make things a lot harder. I start with Soulblight, which is dispelled. I now have 7v2 and should be able to just control the magic phase completely. My thought is that I can two dice Throne of Vines and then cast Flesh to Stone and something else. I pick up my dice and cast double 1...He then dispels scrolls Soublight and dispel my bound frezy spell with his last two dice. Shooting does nothing. I combat reform into ranks after I win combat. His Demis can only attack the Cauldron if they charge, while the Knights can only attack the Dreadlord. The Steam Tank is left on two wounds at this point.

Image

He charges me with his Demis and his cavalry. At this point, I really regret my decision of ditching the Crown of Command. His Knights at the back move up on the hill to get a rear charge next round.

Magic is 8v5 and I dispel Throne of Vines. I can't let him have it as he will just try to push Regrowth on the Stank. He tries to regrow the Steam Tank anyway with three dice and he gets a double 6! He heals two wounds on the Stank, but promptly takes a wound of it as well as a wound on the mage, the BSB and kills 6 knights as he rolls a double 1 for his miscast result. Unfortunately, his mage survives.

I can't remember if I win combat or not, but I think I do. The Dreadlord is in a challenge with his Arch Lector, which is great for me, as he should be able to kill him in two turns.

Image

Turn 5

I drop the ball here. I should have used my Warlocks to redirect the Knights, but I figured that if they charged me, I could simply charge them in the rear next turn and win combat decisively, so I move them behind them instead.

Magic is 7v4 and I manage to get Soublight through on the Demis. I put one wound on his AL, but he manages to ward save three and is left on one wound. I win combat, but he sticks.

Image

He doesn't have anything left at this point that isn't in combat or completely out of the game, so we jump right into magic. He has 9 dice versus my 6. I let Throne of Vines go and use the rest of my dice to dispel Regrowth.

I can't do the last wound to the Steam Tank and also fail to kill the Arch Lector, which is too bad. He wins combat and I run with my Cauldron, my Dreadlord and my few remaining Witch Elves. My luck is strong here, and I mange to roll a 12 for my flee distance!!! He fails to catch me.

Image

Turn 6

I rally my big unit and move the Warlocks so that they can cast Doombolt at his three characters. They are all left on one wound at this point, so a decent cast could see me kill all of them. The Shades move up to try and take the last wound of the Steam Tank.

Magic is 4v3 and I manage to get Doombolt through. Unfortunately it doesn't do antything.

Image

In his last turn, he tries to cast Dwellers at me, but I dispel it.

When we tallied up the VP at the end of the game, he had 1021 and I had 940, which means it was a 10-10, a draw!

Evaluation

It was a great game! It was extremely bloody and I believe I made some mistakes that I should try to fix before I meet Empire the next time. Niblit played a pretty strong game, and I really believe he deserved the victory. It was just luck on my part that I managed to flee so far that I survived with my deathstar.

I am 100% sure that I need the Crown of Command with this setup. If he did not get Dwellers off on my Witch Elves, I would probably have been steadfast and/or won combat all the time, but these things happens, and I need to be prepared for it.

So, what do you guys think? Comments and criticism is, as always, very welcome! :D

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Mon May 05, 2014 1:04 pm
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Slave (off the Altar)

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Your list sports a very capable deathstar. One of the few things it cannot do in this game is cope with multiple 1+ save units engaged simultaneously. Examples include Tzeentch Lord + BSB + Crushers and Empire Armoured Column. There are a few other things as well (Star Dragon + Frostheart is nasty for example) but they are few. Anyways, to this end you seek to gain 1v1 matchups for the unit. At this pace, they can grind through anything.

 

To accomplish this, try and get a skewed deployment with RBTs central and Witchelves situated on a flank (in this case, your East). Shades + WL can split to deal with 1 flank each and DR go centrally to prevent him from wheeling his army around effectively. This also has the juicy benefit of providing your RBTs with flank shots should he wish to completely turn around towards your WE. I would basically have swapped the WE for your Easternmost unit of fast cav and placed WL + Shades ahead of them, near the table edge but within BSB/General. Also, RBTs spread out more with 1 fairly central (i.e. where the green pen is at). Yes there`s a forest in front there but nevermind that ;)

 

T1 - I would`ve liked to see more aggressive WL on the East. You have to face the HBVG at some point. Besides, if they lose a few and you get a big magic phase T2, Regrowth is super powerful. Very tough magic phase to utilize, unfortunately. Getting Throne through is a good result. Shooting: No panic? Priority looks good. Scrolling Dwellers here boils down to his casting value. If it barely beats the 21+, I would prefer a dispel attempt. If it was big, scroll is good.

 

T2 - Do note that given your deployment, the Witchelves have a hard decision to make now. I think I would`ve simply marched them up, playing the waiting game isn`t really their thing as long as he has WMs + Dwellers online. Especially not when your scroll is gone. If he does charge them they`re safe from Dwellers.

 

T3 - by 11" do you mean 16" so that you need to roll 11+ on 2d6? It looks like it from the diagrams. Given the position you have I think this is the right call. Note at the end of T3, despite poor magic and shooting from your RBTs, that you have enveloped him completely and obliterated all WMs (apart from a cannon which eats Fastcav to the face T4 for great justice). What was the Winds` split here?

 

From here on out it was basically rolling the dice. It`s important to remember here that after WMs are cleared, Shades + DRs have one duty only: get WE into meaningful combat. With 1+ across the board, they can`t hurt him at all and this you simply have to accept, unfortunately. Something to consider here to achieve this is simply keep them at long range (perhaps even static) to be in a better position to help WE.

 

I think you have the stronger army in this matchup, but in this game magic was against you and I believe Empire made fewer critical mistakes (though exposed WMs was a bad one it`s not as influential as WEs who cannot commit due to their position). As for WEs flanking and getting redirected: you can always reform and go around. With Shades + WL nearby he has very little chaff to hold them up with as well.

 

Interesting game for sure, thanks for the write-up :)

 

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Mon May 05, 2014 8:17 pm
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Slave (off the Altar)

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Nice report :).

Bad dice we're definitively a factor here. With so few dice in the critical rolls the effect on a few bad ones are also greater.

I guess you failed to redirect away the multicharge on your witchstar because you commited most of your chaff to eliminate the Hellblasters. Tough call. If you'd chosen to redirect the Empire player could simply opt to wait a turn with the charge while he blasts chaff.

Decent result given a hard matchup, solid opponent and bad dice. Play better next time ;).


Mon May 05, 2014 8:34 pm
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Slave (off the Altar)

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Also echo the comments about skewed deployment. It can be a card to play in some matchups, if used with care.


Mon May 05, 2014 8:37 pm
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Killed by Khorne
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I seem to remember someone mentioning you might have trouble with Empire lists.

Good battle and game experience before the tournament.

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Mon May 05, 2014 8:48 pm
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Miscast into the Warp
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Unlucky to lose that many witches to dwellers, but I guess it happens occasionally when running horde sized units.
Think you might be better off with a fighty character on the peg rather than the SS to take on the war machine duty and free up the Warlocks to a more free roaming role.
Crown if you feel is imperative to your list, get back in. It is a good solid item that will generally have a use in most games.

Thanks for the write up, and pictures. Bloody game and a good solid draw.

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Mon May 05, 2014 8:50 pm
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Olannon wrote:
Your list sports a very capable deathstar. One of the few things it cannot do in this game is cope with multiple 1+ save units engaged simultaneously. Examples include Tzeentch Lord + BSB + Crushers and Empire Armoured Column. There are a few other things as well (Star Dragon + Frostheart is nasty for example) but they are few. Anyways, to this end you seek to gain 1v1 matchups for the unit. At this pace, they can grind through anything.

 

To accomplish this, try and get a skewed deployment with RBTs central and Witchelves situated on a flank (in this case, your East). Shades + WL can split to deal with 1 flank each and DR go centrally to prevent him from wheeling his army around effectively. This also has the juicy benefit of providing your RBTs with flank shots should he wish to completely turn around towards your WE. I would basically have swapped the WE for your Easternmost unit of fast cav and placed WL + Shades ahead of them, near the table edge but within BSB/General. Also, RBTs spread out more with 1 fairly central (i.e. where the green pen is at). Yes there`s a forest in front there but nevermind that ;)


Good point on the skewed deployment. On the other hand, this could mean him just sitting back as well, and I don't think I will win a straight up shooting fight. My thought here was that his big Knight unit was a bit trapped in the centre and that he couldn't get away during the first few turns if I simply pushed. 

I think I need both shade units on the western flank if I am to have any chance at taking out the Helblaster though. On the other hand, maybe I could have just let it be.

Olannon wrote:
T1 - I would`ve liked to see more aggressive WL on the East. You have to face the HBVG at some point. Besides, if they lose a few and you get a big magic phase T2, Regrowth is super powerful. Very tough magic phase to utilize, unfortunately. Getting Throne through is a good result. Shooting: No panic? Priority looks good. Scrolling Dwellers here boils down to his casting value. If it barely beats the 21+, I would prefer a dispel attempt. If it was big, scroll is good.


Absolutely agree with the Warlocks. They should have been played more aggresively in T1. I even mentioned this myself during the game. I think I was afraid of being within charge range of the big Knights. Dwellers cast was extreme this round. It may have been something like 28. Lots of 5s.

Olannon wrote:
T2 - Do note that given your deployment, the Witchelves have a hard decision to make now. I think I would`ve simply marched them up, playing the waiting game isn`t really their thing as long as he has WMs + Dwellers online. Especially not when your scroll is gone. If he does charge them they`re safe from Dwellers.


I moved them up a bit, but I probably should have marched them even further for a T3 charge on the Steam Tank, simply chaffing away his knights.

Olannon wrote:
T3 - by 11" do you mean 16" so that you need to roll 11+ on 2d6? It looks like it from the diagrams. Given the position you have I think this is the right call. Note at the end of T3, despite poor magic and shooting from your RBTs, that you have enveloped him completely and obliterated all WMs (apart from a cannon which eats Fastcav to the face T4 for great justice). What was the Winds` split here?


I mean an 11" as I needed a 6+. It is actually not that far, the pictures are lying. I think the winds were 5v2.

Olannon wrote:
From here on out it was basically rolling the dice. It`s important to remember here that after WMs are cleared, Shades + DRs have one duty only: get WE into meaningful combat. With 1+ across the board, they can`t hurt him at all and this you simply have to accept, unfortunately. Something to consider here to achieve this is simply keep them at long range (perhaps even static) to be in a better position to help WE.

 

I think you have the stronger army in this matchup, but in this game magic was against you and I believe Empire made fewer critical mistakes (though exposed WMs was a bad one it`s not as influential as WEs who cannot commit due to their position). As for WEs flanking and getting redirected: you can always reform and go around. With Shades + WL nearby he has very little chaff to hold them up with as well.

 

Interesting game for sure, thanks for the write-up :)

 


Thanks for the comments. I will probably try a different method of deploying the WE next time. I am still trying to figure out the nuances of the army it seems. So far I am pretty confident in my ability to get the scouts and fast cav into positions where I need them, but I am not always that good at positioning the Witch Star.

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Tue May 06, 2014 7:04 am
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Highborn
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T.D. wrote:
I seem to remember someone mentioning you might have trouble with Empire lists.

Good battle and game experience before the tournament.


Yeah, I know you voiced those concerns before, and I partially agree. It is indeed hard to take down that amount of 1+ saves. On the other hand, it is absolutely doable IF I play it correctly. If I can get the witches into meaningful 1v1 combats, which I should be able to do if I play better, it is suddenly much easier. The Dreadlord pretty much makes a mockery of everything he has.

Amboadine wrote:
Unlucky to lose that many witches to dwellers, but I guess it happens occasionally when running horde sized units.
Think you might be better off with a fighty character on the peg rather than the SS to take on the war machine duty and free up the Warlocks to a more free roaming role.
Crown if you feel is imperative to your list, get back in. It is a good solid item that will generally have a use in most games.

Thanks for the write up, and pictures. Bloody game and a good solid draw.


I am afraid of exactly one spell and that is Dwellers. Dreaded 13th is also dangerous, but it is so hard to cast. I knew that he would have at least two chances at casting Dwellers in this game, but I hoped that he would either fail to cast at least once and/or get a miscast, preferably both. :)

I love the peg master, but I unfortunately cannot afford to include him right now. I need a scroll and I need Life Magic simply for the Lore Attribute (that I didn't use once in this game :)). This is even more important if I am to run CoC on the Dreadlord as I need to heal him. Besides, I don't think I have the hero points for him, so he would need to be a Dreadlord.

The Crown of Command isn't usually useful at all, thankfully. It is just that when I actually need it, it is absolutely necessary to have it. Not breaking with ~1000 points can be very important.

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Tue May 06, 2014 7:14 am
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Slave (off the Altar)

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If he tries to stand still against a skewed deployment he`ll lose. You march the WE up and by T3 you have a charge. At this point DRs, WLs and Shades should`ve cleared the important chaff here (Empire has little chaff available). I don`t see this as a winning play by Empire.

The Helblaster on the Western flank: why can`t WL + Shades handle this on their own? You march both units up to charge distance T1. He shoots one of them, perhaps they panic, the other charges. HBVG gone before his T2.

If you had marched up WE hard T2, then received the Dwellers which you did, I don`t think even a 12" flee would`ve saved you. How did you manage to rally by the way, were you not below 25%?

11" charge should be doable. 16" is a long shot ;)

Again I don`t think this list is a hard counter to yours. Certainly some Empire lists are hard (Coven of Light + Nuln battery for example), but I don`t see this one as particularly tough for your army.

BTW! Protip for WE deployment. In this game you want DR centrally. Place them 1-wide, 5-deep and make sure your opponents SEES you measuring up the WE inbetween them (i.e. 10" apart for the 8" wide horde). He will be 95% sure they will end up there and deploy accordingly. When you drop them on the flank, you get a huge jump on him :)

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Tue May 06, 2014 9:37 am
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Highborn
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Some good points. I think that in the end, this all comes down to my still relative inexperience with a list like this. I just need to get the matches in. I am by no means doing horrible with it as I have a 20-0, a 19-1, a 10-10 and a 9-11 so far, but I would like to do even better and that means using the Witches optimally.

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Tue May 06, 2014 5:40 pm
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While I think the Witch Elf star is incredibly powerful, I am not completely comfortable with playing it yet. I might therefore try a list that is a bit different instead. What do you guys think of this?

Dreadlord, General, Light Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Dark Steed, Shield, Repeater Crossbow, Giant Blade, Dawnstone, Dragonhelm - 271pts
Supreme Sorceress, lvl4 Death, Dispel Scroll, Talisman of Endurance - 275pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Lance, Sea Dragon Cloak, Shield Cloak of Twilight - 188pts
Master, Dark Steed, Lance, Repeater Crossbow, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Shield, BSB, Ring of Hotek - 178pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Charmed Shield, Lance, Talisman of Preservation - 186pts
Characters = 1097pts

13 Bleakswords, Musician, Standard Bearer, Lichebone Pennant - 152pts
19 Darkshards, Shields, Musician, Standard Bearer, Banner of Eternal Flame - 277pts
5 Dark Riders, Shields - 85pts
5 Dark Riders, Shields - 85pts
Core = 609pts

Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
5 Shades, Great Weapons - 90pts
5 Shades, Great Weapons - 90pts
Special = 460pts

9 Doomfire Warlocks - 225pts
Rare = 225pts

The Warlocks will work as a character delivery system. The list is fairly mobile and has good shooting support. It can be in an opponents face almost right away or it can stay back and shoot, depending on the matchup. What do you guys think?

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Wed May 07, 2014 2:04 pm
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