Saturday, December 13, 2008

Warhammer Game 2, December 13th, 2008

Just as in the first game, we rolled for teams; 2 lowest rolls would be Dwarfs, 3 High rolls would be Goblins. I rolled a 2 and was looking forward to another shot at using the Thunderers. Rick and Kevin also rolled 2s. But Phillip and Josh, seeing those super-high numbers knew it was not going to be worth rolling so they both threw down 1s. A more pathetic roll I hardly hope to ever see. Awesomely hilarious.

They set up first which was perfect. The cannon went in the middle of the field but way forward. I thought that was a tactical error. The field was small enough the cannon could reach the entire table. The center was correct but I believed it should have been set up as close to the table edge as possible.

We responded by putting out our 20 man Night Goblin Archer unit 20 wide to cover massive frontage. The plan was simple. Advance them 4" per turn, fire, and move everything else behind them. We knew the Archers would all die but by that time, we should be close enough to get our Night Goblin Spear men, Spider Riders, and Slugdrool the Troll into close combat at or near full strength.

Plus, by keeping our General in the center, all our tests would be on a Leadership of 8 instead of 5 (and 4 for Slugdrool).

They next placed a unit of Thunderers to their left (our right) of the Cannon. We placed Night Goblin Spearmen behind the Archer screen. Then they made what I felt would turn out to be another tactical error. They placed the Warriors way out on their Right Flank (our left).

I knew what he was trying to do, which he later confirmed, was to flank us. Unfortunately, he had not played the Dwarfs before and underestimated how bad the 2" less movement per turn would hurt.

We placed our second Night Goblin Spear men on our left flank behind the Archer screen. The only remaining choice was where to place the Night Goblin Spider Riders. My plan was to put them between the Night Goblin Spear men units. Again, however, deploying second helped us.

Josh pushed his Miners up to the front line for deployment. Good choice in some respects; it would let them get into hand-to-hand as quickly as possible. However, by putting them only 12" from where we could deploy, it gave me an opportunity.

I changed my plan and put my Spider Riders to the right of a building, out of sight of the Cannon and Thunderers, but looking straight at his Miners. If we got the first turn, I would charge immediately and be able to get my Spider Riders into combat on the first turn, uninjured. Full strength, the Spider Riders might do some damage even with their pathetic Weapon Skill.

We placed our General with the Spear men on the right wing, our Shaman with the left wing Spear men, and Slugdrool in between.

We won the roll for Initiative and elected to go first.


I declared a charge with the Spider Riders. Our Archer screen advanced 4". Slugdrool passed his Stupidity test. Our army moved forward.

The Archers unleashed their hail of arrows. Rick rolled as many 6s as I have ever seen and 3 Thunderers fell in a hail of Arrows. Nazbad Wartfinger attempted Fiery Blast but it fizzled. Meanwhile, the Spider Riders slew 2 Miners. The Miners were unable to do any damage to the Spider Riders and, surprisingly, decided they did not feel like fighting!

The Spider Riders chased them but had to stop when they ran into Dragon Slayer Borri Graniteskin.

The Miners would turn around on a 9 or less. Josh rolled a 10. That hurt them badly. 5 Miners coming into the battle with Norri and the Spider Riders would have insured a Dwarf win in maybe one more turn.

The cannon belched fire towards the Archers. However, he overshot and the cannon ball landed on the Night Goblin Spear men, then careened through 2 more ranks, killing all 3. The Thunderers unleashed a hail of lead and killed 2 more Archers. Our screen was falling fast.

Meanwhile, on the flank, Norri killed a Spider Rider while taking no wounds himself. However, the Riders won due to having him outnumbered and their Standard. But Norri is Unbreakable. No break test...this was not going to go well for the Goblins. We needed the Spider Riders to somehow do a wound or else keep Norri occupied.

The Archer screen moved forward another 4". The entire army moved forward behind them again as Slugdrool kept his focus. The archers fired again, this time turning their attention to the Cannon, having seen it's fearsome potential. 2 Cannoneers went down under the hail of arrows. The last cannoneer had seen enough. He suddenly remembered he had left a tall, frosty mug of ale at the inn last night and got a head start on getting back to it.

At this point we were ecstatic. The archers were expected to absorb casualties, not deal them. We planned to win in hand-to-hand combat and lose the shooting phase. However, so far the score was 3 Thunderers and the Cannon for us, 5 Archers for them. I will make that trade every time. The Goblins were winning the shooting fight numerically and impact wise. Hilarious. Not for the Dwarfs, I suppose...

Meanwhile, Nazbad Wartfinger got distracted by a wart on his finger and failed to deal any Fiery Blast goodness once again. Goblin sorcery; HA! Worthless.
In close combat, Norri again slew a Spider Rider while taking no wounds yet again lost the battle to their superior numbers and Standard. Being unbreakable, unhittable, and unwoundable by the Spider Riders, he laughed it off, took a big drink from his hip flask, and settled in to deal more damage when his own turn arrived.

The Warriors on the left Goblin flank reformed, getting ready to charge the Night Goblin Spear men flank in another turn or 2.

The Thunderers once more fired, having great success as 5 Archers switched to a lead diet. Lead diets are seldom healthy, and even more rarely healthy when they are at the hands of Thunderers. They passed their Break Test again, though. Sweet!
Norri noticed he was not making much progress against the Spider Riders so doubled his output, putting down 2 of them. Only 5 left. But they were doing a phenomenal job of keeping him from getting into combat with the Spear men, so it was all good.


On the left flank, the Spear men started to charge, but then noticed it was Dwarf Warriors they would be facing. They started an impromptu Karaoke whistling contest which caused their charge to peter out about half way home.

Somehow inspired by the whistling, Nazbad again tried the Fiery Blast. Miracle of miracles, he rolled a 9! The Dwarfs laughed. Picking up just 3 Dispel dice, they rolled them out.! All they have to get on the third die is a 2 to dispel it. And....they failed. They rolled a 1. The spell worked. 4 Dwarfs took wounds...and then Josh rolled 3 fives to keep three alive. Only 1 Warrior died.

The Archers, inspired by seeing their Shaman actually do some damage, killed 2 more Thunderers. The Thunderers were going to run but they were too busy reloading their guns so they elected to shoot them one more time at least before following the Cannoneers example.

Norri, meanwhile, was still having fun so he killed 2 more Spider Riders who passed their test.

On the left flank the Dwarf Warriors charged into the Spear men.

The Thunderers thought since they were only hanging around to shoot their guns they should do some damage. Blood spurted in fountains as 3 archers fell victim.

The Warriors slew 4 Spear men, who could only kill 1 Warrior in return. Somehow, though, they passed their test.

Norri then noticed the Dwarfs could use his assistance in the battle, so he got to work and slew the 3 remaining Spider Riders in one go.


Big Boss Dagskar Earscrapper noticed the Spear men he was with were planning to charge the Thunderers. He figured they could take out the 5 remaining Thunderers without his help, so headed over to offer his leadership against the Warriors who were crushing his left flank.

Meanwhile, Slugdrool the Troll found a few maggots in the Dwarf body he had been carrying around for a few weeks. He decided they would make an excellent snack so he wandered straight ahead munching on them instead of charging the Warriors flank.

The Archers elected to reform so they could charge the Warriors flank.

The Spear men charged the Thunderers. They could not slay a single one and one of their own died. Still, with rank bonus, they won the combat but the Thunderers had no intention of fleeing. They knew if they could hold on a turn or two, Norri would come in and save them.

The Warriors did not plan to wait. They killed several Night Goblins who could do no return casualties. One of the rearward Goblins who could count noticed the bodies piling up and began a rapid retrograde movement. Most armies call that a "retreat". The Warriors overran the retrograde, eliminating the unit.

Things looked bad for the Goblins. The Thunderers and Norri would no doubt make short work of the Spear men and the Archers would be no match for the Warriors. Only a huge smurf-slap by Slugdrool could sway things at this point.

The Warriors found themselves out of position so they reformed in preparation for charging the Archers. Norri moved towards the Thunderers.

The Thunderers then went to work...only to see 4 of their number fall to the Spear men while doing just two casualties in return. The Thunderer Champion looked around to rally his troops and noticed he was all of his troops. He elected to flee.

Slugdrool thought about charging the Warriors but decided to wait and see if they were going to wander off towards someone else, letting him attack them without danger to himself.

The Thunderer could prove a threat and Norri had their flank, so the Spear men decided to charge. The Archers unleashed a hail of Arrows at the Warriors. The Warriors laughed at the incoming flight. Unfortunately, that meant their mouths were open. Had they not been laughing, they would have lived, but the arrows took them in the throat and 3 Warriors shockingly died.

Angered by the carnage wrought by the Archers, the Warriors charged into them as Norri headed towards the Spear men. The Warriors were deadly, slaying 3 Goblins, but one of their own also died. With their rank bonus, the Goblins stood firm.

The Spear men reformed to face the inevitable Norri onslaught.

Slugdrool and Dagskar both elected to charge into the flanks of the deadly Dwarf Warriors. Seeing the massive Troll approaching their flank, the Warriors decided they had urgent business elsewhere and started heading towards it, only to see Slugdrool overtake them and hack them down without mercy...including Thane Godri Thunderbrand.


Norri, the last remaining Dwarf on the field, charged into the Night Goblin Spear men. However, he had been tippling a bit too much. As a result, he rolled 3 1s in 4 dice, killing just 1.

Slugdrool and Dagskar charged in to attack Norri. Slugdrool wounded him. Roaring in anger and frustration, Norri slew another Night Goblin, but they responded by killing him.

What a great battle! So many big events, big swings in momentum. The Miners leaving the field without doing any damage was a huge blow. Then, the Spider Riders kept Norri occupied for 3 full turns (5 combat sessions). Even though they did no damage, they kept him from running roughshod over the Spear men which allowed the Spear men to destroy the Thunderers before Norri could get to them.

Additionally, the Archers outperformed all expectations. If they had just survived 3 turns we would have been ecstatic as that would have let us get our Spear men into combat safely. Instead, they dealt massive amounts of death and destruction:
1) The Cannon
2) 5 Thunderers
3) 3 Warriors in shooting, 1 more in Hand to Hand!
Total: 12 Dwarfs which rendered the War Machine worthless after killing just 3 Night Goblins.

The Warriors were pretty devastating as well, though. Once they got into action they wiped out a 20 Goblin unit of Spear men and a Shaman, then got 3 of the Archers before running from Slugdrool.

And Norri was a maniac. He single-handed killed 10 Spider Riders, his presence occupied a unit of Spear men who desperately needed to be moving towards the Warriors, and only some poor rolling kept him from wiping out a unit of Spear men in the last turn.

After the second turn, things looked bleak for the Dwarfs. Their cannon was gone, their Thunderers were at half strength already, and the Miners were gone. They were in bad, bad trouble. However, things started to look up on turn three.

After the fourth turn, things looked great for the Dwarfs. The Archers were out of position and much weakened, the Warriors had just dispatched the Spear men, the Thunderers were holding strong, and Norri was about to make the fight between Thunderers and Night Goblin Spear men into a one-sided affair favoring the Dwarves. Slugdrool was wandering off the wrong direction, Nazbad was dead, and they were well set up.

In their 5th turn the Warriors would crash into the Archers and most likely destroy them in one turn. Norri would take 2 turns to get to the Thunderer battle, but they had survived the worst of it. So the Goblins had 2 turns left before being annihilated.

Unfortunately for the Dwarfs, the Goblins got a few good rolls in the 5th turn, first killing THREE Warriors in the shooting just 3 hits...and then the Archers not running when the Warriors charged. That extra turn let the Fear-causing Slugdrool to panic the Dwarfs. Had they not failed that test the Goblins probably run in turn 5 and the Dwarfs win.

It was a close-run thing and a lot of fun.

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