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Army Blog - The Dark Reapers - Dragon Lord Musings 
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Miscast into the Warp
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Wow, bleakswords, can't actually remember the last time I saw them in a list :)
What are they doing that your shards cannot do, especially as they already have shields?

Two peg masters are nice and mobile as is the mini warlock star.

Should be a good list to play, but I would change the swords myself and have two decent sized shard units plus give the dark riders a muso and rxb's.

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Wed May 07, 2014 5:55 pm
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Highborn
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The Bleakswords are probably doing absolutely nothing except being a bunker for the SS and giving her a 4++ against spells. The fact that the unit she is in can move around freely is a big plus, the darkshards would never hit anything if I had to keep her there. Ideally, I would have something else, but I am all capped out on shooting and on mounted models. I think the Warlocks are big enough to deliver the Dreadlord, which is really all they have to do, but I will have to test and see. Hopefully, the two Peg Masters can add a bit of punch as well.

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Wed May 07, 2014 6:58 pm
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Btw, one of the reasons why I chose to try a different list is that myself, Olannon, Strange and rusty are going to a team tournament in Sweden early November. We have made a blog on ulthuan.net where we plan to chronicle our list developments. You can find it here: http://www.ulthuan.net/forum/viewtopic. ... 58#p877058

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Wed May 07, 2014 7:12 pm
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Dark reaper wrote:
Btw, one of the reasons why I chose to try a different list is that myself, Olannon, Strange and rusty are going to a team tournament in Sweden early November. We have made a blog on ulthuan.net where we plan to chronicle our list developments. You can find it here: http://www.ulthuan.net/forum/viewtopic. ... 58#p877058


Will give it a read. I actually think the list will do fine, just was a little perplexed with the swords.
Good luck at the tournament.

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Wed May 07, 2014 8:05 pm
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Thanks mate. It is still quite some time left, so I will have some time to playtest and evaluate a few list variants. Watch this space! :)

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Wed May 07, 2014 8:58 pm
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Nice change from your usual style of play. The flexible defense/offense is a great plus.

What I see as downsides:
-Only one real combat unit. It's nigh-impossible to catch, but can be blocked.
-150-odd pts of dead weight mage bunker. I can see the need to move a death mage closer to the action, but still. I don't have any alternative suggestions handy however.


Fri May 09, 2014 5:57 am
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I made a few changes to the list, mainly getting rid of the Bleakswords and buffing the Darkshards and one of the Dark Rider units a bit. I don't think it is ideal to have the Supreme Sorceress with the Darkshards (the ideal solution would be to have her mounted with a fast cav), but due to various restrictions, I think it is my best option. I will have a game against Wood Elves tonight, and I am looking forward to see how the new book plays.

My list:

Dreadlord, General, Light Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Dark Steed, Shield, Giant Blade, Dawnstone, Dragonhelm, Potion of Foolhardiness - 271pts
Supreme Sorceress, lvl4 Death, Dispel Scroll, Obsidian Lodestone - 290pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Lance, Sea Dragon Cloak, Shield Cloak of Twilight - 188pts
Master, Dark Steed, Lance, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Shield, BSB, Ring of Hotek - 173pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Charmed Shield, Lance, Talisman of Preservation - 186pts
Characters = 1108pts

24 Darkshards, Shields, Guardmaster, Musician, Standard Bearer, Banner of Eternal Flame - 352pts
10 Dark Riders, Shields - 170pts
5 Dark Riders, Shields - 85pts
Core = 607pts

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

Army Total = 2400pts

He will be playing the following list:

lvl 4 shadow, steed, book of azure, obsidian amulet
lvl 1 heaven, steed, scroll
BSB, shield, spear, steed, HoDA, DRagonhelm
2x10 GG: musiker, hagbane
11 GG musiker, trueflight
21 Wildwood Rangers, FC, Gleaming Pennant
7 sisters, musiker
7 WR FC Shield
2x10 Waywatchers
2 eagles

My main concern are the Waywatchers. If I can get them off the board I think I will win. Their no armour save-arrows are no fun.

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Sat May 10, 2014 9:12 am
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I had a game this Saturday against Extol's Wood Elves. It is always interesting playing against a new book and I have to admit, I was unsure about the matchup beforehand. I am currently trying to rank matchups on a -2/+2 scale as preparation for the team tournament I am attending in November, and it would be interesting to see how I should rank this one.

Lists are in the previous post. He also had a unit of 5GR that ambushed.

Deployment

We roll up ETC-table 8. My spell selection is great with Spirit Leech, Caress, Soulblight and Doom and Darkness on my lvl4. He wins the roll to choose sides and chooses the one with the most woods. He places his free wood at the back of his deployment zone and puts his sisters, his two mages and his BSB there. I carefully place my Dreadlord more than 36" away from his BSB so I don't have to take a s3 no armour save hit at the start of the game. I deploy my Shades to threaten his Waywatchers and Wild Riders and I deploy my two peg Riders with the Darkshards to make sure they won't get shot at turn 1. I get first turn.

Image

Turn 1

I move forward aggressively on my left flank, figuring I could probably shoot off most of his Wild Riders with Shades+3xRBT, magic away most of one WW-unit and press my advantage early.

Magic is 4v2 and I fail to cast Doombolt on the Waywatchers, needing a 9 in total on 4 dice...

Shades kill 2 WR with shooting. One of the Reapers kills an eagle, one of them kills 3 WW and the last one fails to do anything to the Wild Riders.

Image

He charges my DR with Wildwood Rangers and I choose flee. He also charges my Warlocks with Wild Riders. He only has 5 left, so I am not extremely worried.

His magic phase is even worse than mine, as he gets 2v2 and fails to cast The Enfeebling Foe on the Warlocks. His shooting puts two wounds on my Twilight Peg after I fail two 3+ ward saves. The Warlocks with my two characters easily dispatch the Wild Riders and reforms to face the Waywatchers.

Image

Turn 2

The Warlocks charge one of the Waywatchers units, who elects to flee, they redirect and charge the other Waywatchers instead, together with the Twilight Peg. The other Peg Rider tries to charge the last eagle, but he runs away. The Dark Riders who ran last turn fails to rally and runs off the board. The Darkshards move into the forest in the middle of the table so that the Supreme Sorceress can be within 24" of both his lvl4 and his fleeing Waywatchers.

Magic is 7v4 and he has to scroll my attempt at Caress on his lvl4. I then cast Doom and Darkness with 4 dice on his fleeing Waywatchers and he fails to stop it.

Shooting sees the Darkshards and the Reapers combine to take down some Glade Guard. Dark Elf shooting is potent against Wood Elves.

In combat, I kill all but one of the Waywatchers and elect not to pursue. Instead I reform to face the rest of his army.

Image

He fails a charge on the Warlocks with his Wildwood Rangers. His fleeing Waywatchers do not manage to rally as he has -3 to his LD. However, he is 3" away from the board edge and rolls a 2, so he is still on the board. His Glade Riders don't come on. The Eagle rally. Magic is 10v6, but he fails to do anything meaningful with it. He may have gotten Curse of Anraheir of.

Turn 3

I don't do much fancy in the movement phase except continue to threaten his back line.

In the magic phase the winds are 7v7 and he dispels both Caress and SL.

Shooting kills some more Glade Guards.

Image

He charges my Darkshards with his WWR and I choose to flee. His Waywatchers rally, even with the -3, but his Glade Riders do not come on this turn either.

Magic is 7v4 and he casts Withering on the Twilight Peg, I think he got a bit of tunnel vision here, as he had already managed to take two wound off him. He fails to cast Pendulum.

Turn 4

Darkshard rally and I continue to threaten his back lines.

Magic is 3v2 and I cast Soulblight on some Glade Guard, making them toughness 2 and allowing me to kill 5 of them with shooting.

Image

On his turn he turns the Rangers around and uses his last eagle, who I still haven't managed to kill with my Shades, to redirect my characters.

Magic is 12v7 and he manages to cast Iceshard Blizzard on my Twilight Peg with IF. I dispel the Withering with dice.

Image

Turn 5

My Pegs charge his Sisters and my characters charge the Eagle.

Magic is 3v2 and I fail to cast Doombolt.

Shooting sees about half of the Rangers die. The characters easily dispatch the Eagle and my two Pegs kill his mages and his BSB. They had already lost a wound to the previous miscast, which helped immensely. Seeing as there are so few Rangers left, I reform my characters to face them, figuring the Rangers would only get to put 2-3 attacks on each.

Image

He charges my characters with his WWR and in magic he IFs the only spell he has that does anything, Curse of Anraheir. Two sisters die as they can not get their ward save against miscasts, unlike our Warlocks.

In combat, he manages to kill my BSB with 3 attacks from the WWR....I actually lose combat, but stick on a 9.

Turn 6

I charge the sisters with one Peg and 5 Dark Riders, deciding not to charge in my Twilight Peg on the off-chance that he might fail a DT-test. I cast Soublight on his last remaining GG and kill them with shooting. In combat, I kill all but one of the sisters, who stick on a 3. My Dreadlord easily dispatches everyone he is fighting.

Image

In his last turn, I still fail to kill the last Sister, who again does not break. One model away from a complete wipeout! 20-0 to the Dark Elves.

Evaluation

I think I most certainly can put this as a +2 matchup for me. I don't really know what he could have done to win it. I think he may have been a bit too aggressive with his Waywatchers early, but I would probably have gotten to them at some point anyway.

I did not play perfectly myself either, and there are undoubtely some things I could have done differently. I have already decided to make some ammendments to my list as well. Comments and criticism are once again very welcome! :)

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Tue May 13, 2014 9:46 am
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Thanks for the write and congratulations on the crushing win.
Not much you did wrong really, and I think the result reflects that.

What changes have you decides to make to the list now?

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Tue May 13, 2014 12:41 pm
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I think I made a few mistakes, but nothing major. Having the Darkshards in a place where they could be charged by WWR for example, was not such a good idea. On the other hand, I could have chosen stand and shoot instead, and probably beat them in combat. It is just that I prefer to play safe, especially when I have a lead.

The newest iteration of the list looks like this.

Dreadlord, General, Light Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Dark Steed, Enchanted Shield, Giant Blade, Dawnstone - 258pts
Supreme Sorceress, lvl4 Death, Dispel Scroll, Ring of Hotek - 295pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Lance, Sea Dragon Cloak, Shield Cloak of Twilight - 188pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Lance, Armour of Destiny - 184pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Charmed Shield, Lance, Talisman of Preservation, BSB - 211pts
Characters = 1136pts

25 Darkshards, Guardmaster, Musician, Standard Bearer, Banner of Eternal Flame - 340pts
9 Dark Riders, Shields, Repeater Crossbows - 180pts
5 Dark Riders - 80pts
Core = 600pts

Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
5 Harpies - 75pts
5 Shades - 80pts
Special = 435pts

9 Doomfire Warlocks - 225pts
Rare = 225pts

Army Total = 2396pts

The core is stripped to the bone, but it allows me to take an additional Peg, which is huge! I also get a unit of Harpies, which I can use to redirect units that are pushing against my Shades. This can potentially give me one extra turn of close range fire, which is deadly.

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Wed May 14, 2014 10:33 am
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I have updated the first post with a list of all the battle reports in this thread for easier reference.

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Wed May 14, 2014 10:56 am
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The list looks good, although that may be bias as it is fairly similar in construction to my own.
Do you find the larger unit of shards any more useful than two smaller units, or is it to maximise the flame shots and be able to survive in combat?

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Wed May 14, 2014 5:58 pm
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It is a combination of several different factors. The first is that I am not allowed by comp to have more than 7 of DR with Crossbows/Reapers/Darkshards/5 (or fractions of) Shades. The second is that the big unit can do a few more tricks than what two smaller units can. Mainly, they have the ability to reform into ranks and fill the front rank with pegasi. This gives the unit a static combat resolution of +5 (3 ranks+2 banners) and makes them incredibly hard to shift.

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Wed May 14, 2014 8:49 pm
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This Sunday I had a game against Niblit's Orcs and Goblins. I did not take a lot of pictures, so the BR is going to be brief.

My list:

Dreadlord, General, Light Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Dark Steed, Enchanted Shield, Giant Blade, Dawnstone - 258pts
Supreme Sorceress, lvl4 Death, Dispel Scroll, Ring of Hotek - 295pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Lance, Sea Dragon Cloak, Shield Cloak of Twilight - 188pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Lance, Armour of Destiny - 184pts
Master, Dark Pegasus, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Charmed Shield, Lance, Talisman of Preservation, BSB - 211pts
Characters = 1136pts

25 Darkshards, Guardmaster, Musician, Standard Bearer, Banner of Eternal Flame - 340pts
9 Dark Riders, Shields, Repeater Crossbows - 180pts
5 Dark Riders - 80pts
Core = 600pts

Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
Reaper Bolt Thrower - 70pts
5 Harpies - 75pts
5 Shades - 80pts
Special = 435pts

9 Doomfire Warlocks - 225pts
Rare = 225pts

Army Total = 2396pts

His list:

Unnamed2500 Pts - Orcs & Goblins Army

1 Black Orc Warboss @ 215.0 Pts
General; Heavy Armour
Dragonhelm [10.0]
Talisman of Preservation [45.0]

1 Savage Orc Great Shaman @ 245.0 Pts
Frenzy; Magic Level 4; Big Waagh; Choppa
Dispel Scroll [25.0]
Obsidian Trinket [15.0]

1 Night Goblin Warboss @ 161.0 Pts
Great Weapon
Wizarding Hat [100.0]

1 Savage Orc Big Boss @ 149.0 Pts
Frenzy; Choppa; Great Weapon; Battle Standard
Armour of Silvered Steel [45.0]

1 Savage Orc Shaman @ 155.0 Pts
Frenzy; Magic Level 2; Big Waagh; Choppa
Lucky Shrunken Head [50.0]

1 Goblin Big Boss @ 64.0 Pts
Light Armour
Shrieking Blade [10.0]
Enchanted Shield [5.0]

1 Wolf @ [0.0] Pts

36 Savage Big 'Uns @ 442.0 Pts
Frenzy; Second Choppa; Warpaint; Standard; Musician

1 Savage Orc Boss @ [15.0] Pts

57 Night Goblins @ 274.0 Pts
Netters; Shortbow; Standard; Musician

1 Night Goblin Boss @ [10.0] Pts

1 Fanatic @ [25.0] Pts

8 Trolls @ 280.0 Pts

1 Trolls @ 35.0 Pts

1 Doom Diver @ 80.0 Pts

3 Crew @ [0.0] Pts

1 Doom Diver @ 80.0 Pts

3 Crew @ [0.0] Pts

1 Rock Lobber @ 95.0 Pts
Bully

1 Bully @ [10.0] Pts
Choppa; Light Armour

3 Crew @ [0.0] Pts

1 Rock Lobber @ 95.0 Pts
Bully

1 Bully @ [10.0] Pts
Choppa; Light Armour

3 Crew @ [0.0] Pts

1 Mangler Squig @ 65.0 Pts

1 Mangler Squig @ 65.0 Pts

Models in Army: 119


Total Army Cost: 2500.0

Deployment

We played with one of the new ETC-tables (4 I think). He got to choose sides and deployed almost everything in an open corner. The rationale being that he cannot really move forward. I placed all of my pegs with the Darkshards to protect them from Doom Divers.

I got Spirit Leech, Caress of Laniph, Soulblight and Purple Sun for spells.

He won the roll for vanguard and moved his fast cav hero so that I could not vanguard my Warlocks. I decided to stand still with them so I could charge him turn 1. He won the roll-off, even with my +1.

Image

Turn 1

He moves his fast cav hero in between my war machines, out of line of sight of the warlocks. He fails animosity with his night goblins and cannot cast spells with the wizarding hat goblin this turn.

His magic phase is 5v3 and he gets boosted foot of on the Darkshards. I had mr(3) though, so I was not that worried. He kills 3 darkshards and take off the Charmed Shield on the BSB.

His shooting sees him roll a lot of misfires, but nothing really dangerous happens. His Doom Diver kills 4 Dark Riders from the big unit, but I pass panic.

On my turn, I move the Warlocks up into hard cover as I don't want 50 shortbows hitting me in the open. My Darkshards march forward, the pegs still in the unit.

Magic is 9v5. I cast Soulblight on the Goblins Big Boss so that I am absolutely sure that I will kill him. It would be disastrous for me to leave him alive, as he would kill several of my War Machines. I fail to cast Purple Sun on 4d6.

In shooting I kill the Boss and do two wound to one of his mangler squigs.

Image

Turn 2

He doesn't move anything and both his blocks fail animosity. Not that it really matters. In magic (6v5) I dispel Foot of Gork with 5v5 and he fails to cast eadbutt with his last dice.

He has 5 NGs who are able to hit the warlocks on an 8+ and he kills one. The Doom Divers kill 4 more.

On my turn, I declare a charge with the Warlocks on the NGs. I pass all my dangerous terrain test, but he kills another one on 8+...His fanatic doesn't kill anyone though, so that was lucky. The Darkshards with characters charge the lone troll, as I cannot get a good shot anyway and I am reluctant to send my Peg Heroes out in the open when he has both of his Doom Divers alive and I have nowhere to land.

Magic is 4v3, which is great for me. He has to use his scroll to stop Purple Sun.

Shooting sees the Shades kille the fanatic, while the RBTs all miss or fail to wound the mangler squig behind the Night Goblins. This is extremely irritating, as he only has one wound left and he can just send it through his own NGs next round.

I easily dispatch the single troll and I easily win against the NGs as well. He sticks.

Image

Turn 3

He does not move this time either. The mangler kills a handful of Goblins, a warlock and puts a wound on the Dreadlord. In magic, my Ring of Hotek pays off as he double 1s foot and loses the rest of his dice. His Doom Divers and Rock Lobbers kill some Darkshards. The Dreadlord kills his Goblin Warboss.

I decide to unleash my master plan (which is actually quite stupid) and send my three pegs out of the unit, while using the naked Dark Riders to redirect his Savages and Trolls.

Magic is 7v6 and he dispels Purple Sun. I fail to cast Caress of Laniph on 3d6.

At this point, I realise that I have made a mistake. His Mangler Squig in the corner can move through his Trolls and Savages and hit all three of my pegs. It probably won't be lethal to more than one, statistically, but still...

In shooting, my Shades manage to take the last wound of the Mangler he sent through his NGs last turn, while all my Reapers fail to put the last wound on the second Mangler. This is not looking good...

Image

Turn 4

He sends his Mangler out to kill my Pegs and rolls high enough to bounce through all of them (he didn't need much). I am insanely lucky however, and only my BSB die. The other two only suffer one wound between them, which is quite a feat considering the Twilight Peg has no ward save against Manglers. His Trolls charge my Dark Riders.

His magic is 4v3 and I scroll Hand of Gork.

His shooting continues to bother me and he has now killed almost all of the Darkshards. There is literally only the champion left. The eternal grind with the Dreadlord continues. I am so happy he is in combat and not somewhere a Doom Diver might hit him.

In my turn, the Twilight Peg charges a Doom Diver and the other Peg moves into position to threaten his back line (i.e. the other War Machines). The sorceress jumps ship and joins the Shades.

Magic is 8v7 and I IF Purple Sun. However, I roll a 4 and the template stops just before it hits his deathstar. The miscast see me lose the rest of my dice.

Shooting sees some Trolls die. I have almost nothing to shoot at at this point.

Image

Turn 5

He still doesn't move much as he cannot really find a position that is favourable for him.

Magic is 7v5 and he IFs Foot of Gork on the Darkshard Champion to get some points. The foot drifts off and the miscast has no significance apart from doing a wound to his lvl2. Shooting does nothing noteworthy as his Doom Divers are respectively dead and engaged.

In my turn, I charge the last war machines and set up for a late charge to wipe the NGs. I also manage to pick off his lvl2 with Caress of Laniph.

Image

Turn 6

He manages to kill the last Darkshard with Foot of Gork in a 12v6 phase.

In my turn, I manage to kill enough Trolls to bring him to 25%, so I get half points for them. I also kill off the last off the NGs.

Image

He got 856VP, while I got 1334, making this a 13-7 for the DE. I did not know the matchup very well beforehand, but I think I could have been more aggressive. He can't really do that much against an army such as this. It was also really stupid to put the Pegs like that and not doing that could have made this a bigger win. I still rate this as a +1 matchup for the DE (on a scale from -2 to +2)

Comments and Criticism are very welcome! :D

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Tue May 20, 2014 1:59 pm
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Other than the Peg hero vs Mangler error, you didn't really do that much wrong, so congratulations on the win.
I don't think I have seen such a static OnG display for a long time. Looking at the pictures he didn't move really all game. Sure it protected the warmachines for a while, but they really didn't do that much damage to you anyway; one of the joys of your list I guess, very little to actually target to get decent points from.
All in all I am not sure how much more agressive you could have been, you got into the flank of his battle line asap, I guess really the only think would have to have launched charges from the peg masters at the same time, had they been deployed slightly differently.

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Tue May 20, 2014 4:54 pm
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The biggest misstake I made was not turnering my orcs around i turn 4 to prevent his masters to overrun into another warmachine.

If I go forward I lose until the Pegs are dead.


Tue May 20, 2014 9:18 pm
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Hello and welcome. Glad to have a different perspective on the battle.
Assume you have played each other before. How are you generally coping with multiple peg masters as a threat?

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Tue May 20, 2014 9:23 pm
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Two very good batreps, clear and not too long :) .

WE:
This looks to be an extremely hard matchup for WE. All those unkillable flyers and shooting. Could possibly be turned into a 5-15 loss, anything more requires hard work and luck.

That said, Extol makes two mistakes here that I can see.
1. He deploys WW so that you can charge them off i your turn 2, and he doesn't set up sufficient counter charges to deter them being charged in the first place. Alternatively, he could have run the waywatchers behind a unit or obstacle to prevent them being charged. Granted, not easy, but possible.
2. Charging the WR to their doom in turn 2.



OnG:
Very hard for Niblit to make a move here, due to the pegs. Smart use of the Mangler.

What I would like to se the you do
1. March everything up turn 1. Charge all four heroes into the Savage orcs turn 2. Then use dark riders and warlocks to keep trolls and night goblins out of the fight. Move up beind and cast soulblight twice, or even purple sun. Place a warded character in base to base with the general to prevent him hitting on your general. Then kill the characters and unit.
2. Form character up in the front rank of five wide darkshards and march them all up in the face of the trolls. Kill them, reform and take on the orcs. That way, the night goblins are kept out of the fight. Steadfast and hexes should se you through, although you will lose a peg or two.

Both setups make for a potential 20-0 win, but have higher chance of loss than what you did.
Would be interesting to her what Niblit thinks of his chances in case 1 and 2. Also a quick calculation of how the showdown would end up.


Tue May 20, 2014 11:05 pm
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Post scriptum: well played btw. Didn't find much to change given your chosen level of risk.


Wed May 21, 2014 11:28 am
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Location: Trondheim, Norway
I think I will have to run the numbers on all the characters+warlocks against SOBU. At the time, I did not think it would be possible to kill them, but it might actually be the best solution. I am still interested in seeing whether it would be worth the risk though. This way of playing is almost a sure win, if not an extremely big one, which I value to some extent. I was much more aggressive in the WE battle however, as there is almost no risk in just pushing stuff forward. I generally like facing armies that are split up, but I am not sure cornering would have been any better for him either.

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Wed May 21, 2014 12:21 pm
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Slave on the Altar

Joined: Tue May 20, 2014 9:13 pm
Posts: 3
In case 1 I think it could work. BSB and 1-2 wizards will probably die the first round. So a Steadfasttest on 9 for me. After that I can´t hurt your Heroes and you will kill my general. BTW If Manglers is alive and I hold, this is suicide for the elves...

In case 2 are you meaning to bring the general too with the Darkshards? 5 or 6 in front rank? I think 1 hero will die before the Trolls flees.

The best way to deal with the Trolls I think is to just shoot them done with flaming arrows.

Hi Amboadine! I shoot them done with Doomdivers.


Fri May 23, 2014 12:48 pm
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Highborn
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Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2002 10:43 am
Posts: 711
Location: Trondheim, Norway
It has been a while since I last posted. Since I last posted I have moved and got married, during a relatively short time-span. In other words, some exceptional planning.

What we have been discussing lately is which team should be allowed to take Death in the team tournament. Olannon wants to test out Death with a HE cavalry bus, but if he lays claim to our one death choice, I have to find something else. The only real option I see is Shadow magic as it synergises ok with the army. I will try to review both lores within the context of the army.

The Lore of Shadow

Lore Attribute - Smoke and Mirrors
In the context of my list, this is absolutely useless. It literally cannot be used, as I only have one infantry character, the Sorceress herself.

0 - Melkoth's Mystifying Miasma
5+ basic
10+ boosted

This is in my opinion the bread and butter of the Lore of Shadow. You are guaranteed to get it, as it is the signature, and it is easy to cast, needing only a 5+ for the basic version. It is fairly flexible and allows me to reduce either the M, WS, BS or I of any opposing unit. The spell can be cast reliably (35 out of 36 times) on two dice, and a little less reliably (2 out of 3 times) on one die. It is possible to cast it with one die as the last spell in the phase, but I primarily see this as an early cast with two die. The boosted version requires three dice to cast reliably and probably won't get casted that often. The range of 48" is also a big plus.

The main use for this spell outside of combat is to reduce an opponent's movement if they plan to push against me, for example against WoC or Ogre Gutstars, or to reduce their BS so they won't shoot me down so easily, for example against Wood Elves or Dwarfs. In some circumstances it can also be used to reduce initiative so that a casting of Pit of Shades will be even more devastating. In combat, it will mainly be used to reduce WS, or boosted to reduce WS and I in some cases. This depends heavily on the opponents though, as there are certain treshholds where reducing WS are more effective than others.

1 - Steed of Shadows
5+ basic

This is also a spell that is fairly easy to cast. Unfortunately, it seldom does very much. I do have a lot of characters that likes to fly around solo though, so I intend to playtest it. It may be useful in some circumstances to send my Lord or one of my Pegs behind enemy lines, especially as I often join my Peg characters to my Darkshards anyway, but I am not sure. The range of 12" is quite crippling.

2 - The Enfeebling Foe
10+ basic
13+ boosted

This one is good. I am not completely sure that it synergises that well with my list, but reducing an opponent's strength with d3 can be devastating. At a fairly modest 10+ for 18" range, it is also relatively easy to cast. My problem with the spell in the context of the list is mainly the fact that I can't really grind. The Warlocks with Dreadlord do a fair bit of damage, but the Peg Masters only do any real damage on the charge anyway. It might be worth it simply for making the Warlocks survive a bit longer though. I will have to try and see.

3 - The Withering
13+ basic
16+ boosted

Let's not kid ourselves, this is where it is at. This is the spell that I will try to cast in EVERY SINGLE MAGIC PHASE and the one spell that the opponent will do everything to stop. With 25 Darkshards, 9 DR, 5 Shades and 4 RBTs, -d3 toughness is devastasting! I can use 5 dice to cast this though, and the opponent won't always have that many dispel dice. A good thing about the spell is that the Soulblight of the Warlocks gives i the all-important redundancy. If I can get a 7v4 phase for example, can the opponent risk stopping this with 4 DD vs 5 PD and risk a fairly certain miasma or a 58% soulblight on top of it? Another thing to keep in mind is that this spell is good against almost everything. I can even cast it on particularly irritating WMs if I so wish. It is also RiP, so the opponent will have to use his own PD to dispel it in his own magic phase if he can't dispel it right away.

4 - The Penumbral Pendulum
13+ basic
18+ boosted

I have never really liked this spell. I can see it being relatively good against gunlines, but I really think it is too hard to cast for its value. If I cast it on a particularly dangerous monster (or a steam tank) I only do d3 wounds to it anyways. This is in my opinion a spell that I will almost always swap out.

5 - The Pit of Shades
14+ basic
17+ boosted

Why would you ever want Pendulum anyway, when you can have this spell instead? You will need a minimum of 4 dice to cast it though, which means that for casting both Pit and Withering in a single phase, you will need a minimum of 8 dice, preferably more. Pit is good against everything with low Initiative. It is no Purple Sun, but it packs quite a punch. The main advantage it has over PS is that it always has 24" range, while PS has to roll for range. It does scatter though, and it does not remain on the battlefield. Still, it is devastating to Ogres, Steam Tanks, War Machines and Star Dragons. It also cannot be casted into combat, unlike Purple Sun.

6 - Okkam's Mindrazor
18+ basic
21+ boosted

It used to be so easy to win games with this spell alone. My 30 corstairs and 20 BG would just decimate the entire army with one casting of this spell. Under ETC-restrictions, you are only allowed to use 4 dice to try and cast this spell, which makes it less good, to say the least. With only a 50% chance (approximately) to cast the spell, it is not something you can base anything on really. The Darkshards and the Warlocks become killing machines with this spell on them, but it is too unreliable.

Overall

Overall, the Withering is a must-dispel for the opponent and Pit is a must-dispel against some opponents. Miasma is also a good spell that will probably be cast quite often due to the army-wrecking nature of the two others. This will also make room for the Warlocks and their Soublight and Doombolt. I am not completely sure about the Lore, as I see it as a step down from Death. On the other hand, it might be the best for the team and I intend to try it. I will post a review of the Lore of Death within the context of the army soon.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 11:44 am
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Noble
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Joined: Tue May 12, 2009 8:56 am
Posts: 423
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Lore choice is difficult in the flying circus army.

Contenders are: Life (for dwellers and lore attribute on pegs), Metal (for offsetting army weakness vs armor with searing doom, plague of rust and final trans), shadow (for reasons above), Dark (for a mix between shadow and death with both the important shroud as well as word of pain and black horror).

I can say that i have personally playtested shadow a lot and have decided to abondon it in a flying circus list. Why? If i throw 5 dice at withering and/or Pit of shades each turn i run a risk of miscasting each and every turn and loose my lv4 which can be devastating. Often I found my self going for soullblights and doombolts for simliar effect but with no chance to loose my lv4.

In the end i concluded that for me Dark > Shadow, but that is based on the option to play my bunker aggressively. If you stay back, metal or shadow is probably your best bet.

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Interesting threads from the past:
BG Executioners Axe List:
Facing Ogres:
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Effective use of Magic
Tips Using Harpies:


Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:50 pm
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Shade

Joined: Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:01 pm
Posts: 116
Location: Serving Mathlann!
Just like to say I thouroughly enjoy this thread and love learning about the matchups for the witchstar and flying circus.
Cheers! :D

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Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:27 am
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Highborn
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Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2002 10:43 am
Posts: 711
Location: Trondheim, Norway
Scyloc wrote:
Lore choice is difficult in the flying circus army.

Contenders are: Life (for dwellers and lore attribute on pegs), Metal (for offsetting army weakness vs armor with searing doom, plague of rust and final trans), shadow (for reasons above), Dark (for a mix between shadow and death with both the important shroud as well as word of pain and black horror).

I can say that i have personally playtested shadow a lot and have decided to abondon it in a flying circus list. Why? If i throw 5 dice at withering and/or Pit of shades each turn i run a risk of miscasting each and every turn and loose my lv4 which can be devastating. Often I found my self going for soullblights and doombolts for simliar effect but with no chance to loose my lv4.

In the end i concluded that for me Dark > Shadow, but that is based on the option to play my bunker aggressively. If you stay back, metal or shadow is probably your best bet.


It is interesting that you decided to go for Dark. I have to admit that it has not even been on my radar. WoP is of course always a very good spell, as is Black Horror. I really haven't had the chance to test Shroud, but it looks good on paper, the 12" range bothers me a bit though. I think metal could work decently as it offsets some of our army disadvantages, as you say. I still think Death is the optimal choice, but max 1 (in this tournament) pr. team has me looking at other alternatives right now. Your input is obviously very valued, as I know you are a really good player and has played a similar list for some time. :)

Pablo wrote:
Just like to say I thouroughly enjoy this thread and love learning about the matchups for the witchstar and flying circus.
Cheers! :D


I am really happy to hear that. I am probably not the best player on this website, but I like to use this blog as a tool for improving my own play. If others can learn something from it as well, that is great!

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Mon Jun 16, 2014 12:02 pm
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