Sunday, February 28, 2010

Warriors of Chaos Versus Dark Elfs: Disaster Round 4

I have fought the Dark Elf army three times; twice in "Warbands" games and once in a pitched battle. Two of them have been complete massacres where i did not score a point off them, the other I won after taking a great deal of damage but running him off the table in the final turn.

In short, between Fixed Dice's ability as a general and the Dark Elf book being far and away the most versatile one our group currently uses, they are very difficult for the Warriors of Chaos.

A lot of this is due to the inherent weaknesses of the WoC. With just a single glorified Stonethrower and the 6" throwing axes on the Marauder Horsemen, the WoC have no range. They struggle with any army with easy access to massive quantities of firepower...Dwarfs, all three Elf armies are bad match-ups.

Of course, to compensate for the lack of ranged weapons, WoC have access to some of the best magic in the game. Unfortunately, the ridiculously over-powered and under-priced Ring of Hotek for the Dark Elf army, the high-priced but deadly Null Stone, Vortex Shard and Annulian Crystals combine with Drain Magic to render magic at best unreliable and at worst more deadly to the WoC than to those two armies.

That means when I know I am specifically facing an Elf army, I have to find a way to neutralize their shooting without using the advantage I allegedly have against shooting magic. (You could probably add the MR Dwarf army to the list, except I have never lost to the Dwarfs and do not particularly fear them, which is a minority opinion in our group.)

One way would be a fast, nearly all-cavalry army.

(This is, from right to left, how I lined them up)
A unit of Marauder Horsemen with throwing axes should get to the inevitable Repeater Crossbows in about 2 turns. The Dragon Ogres can go after the Dragon/War Hydra/manticore and have a better than reasonable chance of doing some damage. The Knights, bolstered by Archaon the Over-priced...err, Everchosen, my beloved BSB making everyone within 6" stubborn, and a scroll caddy should handle the Cold One Riders, and the 2nd Marauder Horsemen should deal with any other Repeater Bolt Throwers, Repeater Crossbowmen, etc.

Meanwhile, Wulfrik and his band of Marauders can see where they will be most effective on the turn they arrive.

Facing them would be, from my left to right, Dark Riders, a unit of Cold One Knights, his chariot, the War hydra, Crone something or other, a couple units of Witch Elves with the Cauldron supporting them, and on the rolled-every-game-in-opponents-deployment-zone hill 2 Repeater Bolt Throwers with a unit of Witch Elfs to guard against Wulfrik.

By the way, this game came about because Fixed Dice and I came across a guy selling his models extremely cheaply, and we wanted to play his new models the Witch Elfs and Cauldron and Chariot. Unfortunately, many of the Witch Elfs were not yet dry but they look smurfing fantastic. I am jealous of his painting skills.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 1
I already made a mistake in my set-up. After I had set-up, I re-read Archaon's entry and realized I could not, in fact, put the BSB and Scroll Caddy in the Knights. So I lazily put them to the side instead of behind, thinking A) they still could not get charged and B) keeping los for my scroll caddy might matter...ironically, both wizards rolled the exact same spells; Infernal Gateway and the Magic Missile.

I did not want him to charge, so advanced about 12" thinking he had M5 across the board, forgetting the Hydra and Chariot would have better movement, and forgetting the Cold Ones had 7". So on top of two set-up mistakes (my Knights should have been on the left by the Marauders), I made a mathematical, lazy error.

Against some opponents, I may or may not get away with that. I would argue the best player in our group is Fixed Dice...and against a superior general and army, I have to play flawlessly. This would cost me.

I sent my right flank marauders far off to the right after the Bolt Throwers.

Magic was unbelievably kind to me. Sure, my Infernal failed to cast, and I rolled a "1" to cast the magic missile, but my scroll caddy got it off successfully and slew 6 Witch Elfs. For me, that is a spectacular success.

Dark Elf Turn 1
He uses the Cauldron to give the War hydra a 5+ Ward Save. With high T, Regeneration and a Ward, the Hydra will be tough indeed to hurt. His Cold ones charge my Marauder Horsemen after Malus invoking his special rule that I thought meant he would attack one of his own guys every turn.

I debated for a while; if I fled the Marauders, he would probably re-direct onto the Dragon Ogres. I have no unit that can stand up to a Cold One Charge (the way he normally builds the unit...I end up facing approximately 3,000 S6 attacks that allow no armor save and he has rank bonuses, banner bonuses, and a static combat resolution score of 70 or may sound like hyperbole, but it doesn't feel like it) whereas if I let him kill my 86 point unit, it will force him to over-run and take him out of the battle long enough for me to use my Archaon-fueled Knights to rampage through his Witch Elves. So I stand and shoot.
And, in a shocking development, actually slay one of his Cold ones coming in.
Meanwhile, the frenzied Crone hellebron hits my carelessly placed Sorcerer.
he also moves the 2 remaining Witch Elfs in front of the knights and angles the chariot to flank the inevitable Dragon Ogre charge on the Hydra.
His Hydra then wounds the Dragon ogres twice with his breath, the RBT, one of them fires and kills two Marauder Horsemen, the other wounds a Knight with multi-fire, but I save it. Sweet, a good break.
Meanwhile, close combat goes about as expected. Malus and his mount alone kill all 5 Horsemen and he over-runs.
The Crone hits 6 times in 8 tries, the sorcerer folds like a cheap suit and he over-runs into my badly placed BSB.

The situation after one turn

Warriors of Chaos Turn 2
I ponder. I could avoid the front 2 Witch Elfs and hit the ones behind...but I would only have contact with 2 or 3 of them. With the Hydra being effectively unkillable, I figure the Dragon Ogres will be locked with him and protect my flank. So I will charge the 2, kill them, over-run into the Witch Elfs behind and do them in a turn, running through into the Cauldron. His Cold ones will have to take a turn to turn around, the Crone will over-run this turn and take at least 2 turns to be a problem, and that means for a couple turns the RBT are not a problem, by which time Wulfrik will arrive and deal with them.
And Wulfrik arrives this turn.
So I charge the 2 man unit.
And get lazy. I initially bring Wulfrik on the right flank, just where I should...I figure to hit his first RBT and slay them turn 1, allowing me to over-run into RBT two and, at that point, probably get flanked by his Witch Elves but I should be in decent shape against them.
However, the awkward hill edge frustrates me, so I move to the edge behind him, it is hard to place the models, so I move them over behind the Cauldron. Pure laziness, bad play, and irrelevant...because on this turn, things going good will mean things go bad.
See, the Dragon Ogres do what they should....they wound the Hydra 7 times. With S7 and 10 attacks, that is not a big surprise. Of course, the Hydra then regenerates 3 and ward saves a 4th, but I get 3 wounds through. He wounds back 3 times, I roll well and save 2. His handlers hit 4 times, somehow, needing 5s, wound 3 times...and I save 2. Sweet, I win. He tests on an 8, fails, runs 10" and I follow and catch him.

This was a disaster. I needed to tie or lose this combat, as my BSB was still alive and I would re-roll test on stubborn, protecting my flank. Now the Chariot had a clear line of sight to my flank.
The "mighty" Archaon does kill both Witch Elfs...barely. Between he and Dorgar, I have 10 S5 attacks and need all of them to kill 2 Witch Elfs. Uh oh. Still, I over-run into the second line, but at this point, though I do not fully realize it, the game is over.

in the least shocking event this side of a politician lying, the Crone gets mass over-kill on my BSB and over-runs.

Dark Elf Turn 2
His Chariot flank-charges the Knights, the Witch Elfs on the hill get ready to counter-charge my Marauder Horsemen (who had gotten to the hill...their axes were ineffective, hitting the Bolt Thrower instead of the crew), the Crone flies back to get right behind my Knights, and his Dark Riders prove the effectiveness of their shooting, putting 2 wounds in three tries on the Dragon Ogres.
The RBT both fire at the Marauders with Wulfrik, proving surprisingly inept and doing just 3 casualties.
Unfortunately, his impact hits take place before my Knights attack the Witch Elfs. The Cauldron gave the Chariot Killing Blow, and it kills 2 Knights, then I roll a "1" to fail to save a third hit. Three Knights down.
I forget to have Archaon invoke his sword, and he and Dorgar combine to, with 10 S5 attacks against a lowly Witch Elf champ, do just 3 wounds. The Knight and Knight Champ combine to do all of 2 more wounds and their horses do 3. His Witch Elf then kills a Knight, I lose the combat by one because that last wound kills my standard bearer and he has a instead of him taking break tests with Witch Elfs and Chariots, I take a re-rollable break test on a 9...and fail it twice.

At this point, I have 1 Dragon Ogre, 2 Marauder Horsemen, 12 Marauders and Wulfrik left. The Hag with the Cauldron removes all rank bonuses, outnumbering and so forth....the game is really over. We pack it in with the result I always expect against the Dark Elfs, a Massacre in their favor.
Not that I mind...this was a fun game, I win way more than my share, and I was outplayed in the following areas:
- army composition
- deployment
- maneuver
Plain and simple, his army build was better than mine. Once again, I had no way of dealing with a flyer and carelessness needlessly exposed my BSB. Had his crone had to charge my Dragon Ogres or Knights, I probably have at least a chance of killing her, which would help a lot. But I gave him a better target, he prudently took it.
My laziness with the Wulfrik brigade in effect cost me maybe 200 points...maybe not because his Witch Elfs in my flank would not be good for me.
In maneuver, I thought I was getting what I wanted, but when I was too successful (Dragon Ogres running the Hydra) it let him get the charge on my important unit. Impact hits with Killing Blow is exactly what my Knights cannot afford.
So I was out-built, out-played, and took exactly what I should have taken.
And I learned a couple things. Archaon would be quite viable at maybe 350 or 400 points. At 685 he is ridiculously over-priced and much better in theory than in practice.
The other stuff I will keep to myself...but the clues are there :-)
All in all, a fun game and a good afternoon.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Campaign Game: Warriors of Chaos Versus Dogs of War

In our campaign there is a lot more strategy to the game than merely winning or losing. Because losing a model means it might not come back for the next game, it is imperative to minimize casualties, though of course not at the cost of losing the game.

With that in mind, this game had some major pitfalls.

On the one hand, between my points advantage (2250-1750) and the fact the Dogs of War are out-dated and therefore slightly weakened and over-costed, I should win fairly handily.

At the same time, with two cannons, pikemen, and some crossbowmen ensconced in a tower, I could take a lot of attrition to important models. One lucky cannon shot could cost me the services of the Shaggoth or a Knight. So I had to be careful.

The Setup
We went "secret dispositions". The only relevant terrain on my side of the field were a couple forests closing off my left flank and a small village on my right, ensuring I would head straight up the center of the field.

This is bad when the opponent has a hill and tower on their left flank to put cannons and crossbowmen in....

Anchoring his flank on the forest, Liam put a cannon on my left flank, Pikemen flanking it, then Ogres, the Paymaster and his bodyguard, his second cannon on the hill on my right, and the crossbows in the tower.

I placed my Dragon Ogres on my left flank, then a block of Chaos Marauders, My Chaos Knights (with Mithridates and Diophantus, my General and Battle Standard Bearer in it) with the Chaos Warriors behind them, Marauder Horsemen on the right with the Shaggoth on the extreme right.

My theory was the left flank would probably have little on it and the Dragon Ogres could probably handle it. If nothing was there, they were fast enough to get into the action quickly.

The Marauder Horsemen could ride ahead to take some shots at his anticipated cannon-placings on the hill with the Knights coming behind quickly.

My placement worked pretty well. But now it was key to get the first turn, because a couple well-placed cannon balls could careen through two or three units apiece...but the dice were against me.

Dogs of War Turn 1
Oh, forgot...he had some Halflings who started taking advantage of their special rules to head through the forest on my left. Everything else stood firm.

His first cannon shot was guessed perfectly, with the artillery die l/4" in front of my Knights. Any 4+ result would not only get a Knight, it would take out Chaos Warriors as well. stuck in the mud. HUGE sigh of relief!

His second cannon was guessed nearly as well, though the flight landed it an eight inch beyond my Dragon Ogres but in good shape to rip all five ranks of Marauders...until it also stuck!

But then his crossbows went to work on the Shaggoth and put a whopping 3 wounds on him. Half dead before I even got a turn!

He had other shots that forced my Knights to make a couple saves, which they did and then his Magic spell Forked Lightning was successful but harmless.

Overall, I was not unhappy.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 1
With no shooting and no magic, I was in trouble. I took a quick look at his Giants, Dragons, Wyverns, or other hard, nasty targets i would need Shaggy's S6 for. He went to hide behind the buildings.

Note this is how a campaign game is different than a normal game. As a general rule, I want him being the target so my other units can cross the field unweakened by missile fire. However, if I lost him permanently for the campaign, my army would be significantly weakened. So best to hide him and keep him around for the next game.

Everything else moved forward nearly a full march move.

Dogs of War Turn 2
He surprised me by making a general advance.
His first cannon again landed perfectly an inch in front of the knights (curse his extremely accurate range guessing!) and then...stuck! Bwoohahahaha...urk.

His other cannon scythed through my Marauders like a cannon ball through models with no armor, doing three casualties.

His Crossbowmen then shot at my Marauder horsemen, wounding 4 times. Fortunately, I saved 2, but still 2 died. then his second unit shot down 2 more and his captain shot down the last one. I looked on in awe as he one-turn wiped out my Horsemen before they ever got into their 6" axe range.

This time I dispelled Forked Lightning.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 2
When you have a close-combat oriented army and the opponent is throwing 40 or 50 shots a turn, the best thing you can do is get into contact so he cannot shoot at you anymore.

His cannoneers fail their Fear test and flee but I redirect and hit his bodyguard. Mithridates declared a challenge which was met by the Mercenary Captain.

This just in; heroes from 3 years back do not fare well against WoC Lord level characters. Mithridates only did 2 wounds, but the Sword of Change proved its worth; the Mercenary failed his test and died. I rolled on the table and now Mithridates causes Terror.

Well, when he became a spawn, the Captain thrashed around, wounding the Paymaster and killing a random bodyguard.

Diophantus wounded 4 of them...and they saved them all. Ouch. The horse wounded twice...they saved both. Fortunately, the Knights managed to do 8 unsaved wounds and their horses another.

At first it seemed they would stand, but then we remembered...they were now outnumbered by a Fear causing enemy. they broke, the nearby Ogres broke, both over-run. This caused the Pikes to break.

Dogs of War Turn 3
His cannon failed its terror test, broke and ran. However, his pikemen and Wizard both rallied. His crossbows shot a lot at the Knights, but I saved the only 3 wounds. then his halflings popped out of the forest and wounded a dragon ogre.

Then he got off the Comet of Cassandra with irresistible force. Oops.

Warriors of Chaos turn 3
And...the Comet hits. 2 Chaos Warriors and 6 Chaos Marauders die. This game is getting expensive...and there is more danger ahead.

Time to concentrate on his pikemen. Able to invalidate my cavalry charge and fight in multiple ranks, I really want to make sure I break them.

The Chaos Dragon Ogres ignore the plinking halflings and get on the left flank of the pikemen. the Knights wheel around to get the right flank of the pikemen. And the Chaos Warriors advance to close the trap. He has nowhere to go.

(Note; If this were not a campaign game, I would have sent lots less after the pikes, but their ability to perhaps kill a Knight or three meant I was taking no chances. I figured he would probably turn to face the Knights but I would do great harm with my Dragon Ogres in the rear and Chaos Warriors in the flank.)

Dogs of War Turn 4
Sometimes you forget the obvious or overlook the unexpected. Liam made a brilliant move here...he charged my Chaos Marauders. I must admit I did not see that one coming.

His Wizard Mis-cast, his Halflings had like one shot and it missed.

The Pikes proved they are old edition and facing Chaos Marauders, wounding but one time in like 15 attacks. That wound was saved. The Marauders wounded the Pikemen 3 times, but 2 were saved.

Uh-oh...he has 2 more ranks, a better standard, and outnumbers...I break and flee, he over-runs. this is disastrous, as being over-run has one of the largest negative modifiers and so the entire unit was likely lost for good. D'oh!

Warriors of Chaos Turn 4
Revenge...his Wizard was alone in front of my Knights. Mithridates killed him in a challenge, gaining Slaughterers Strength. His cannoneers see the slaying, break, flee and leave the table.

Dogs of War Turn 5
Not much left to do but reform to face the inevitable charge next turn. His shooting and magic missed.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 5
Charge! In go the Knights and Warriors. And the Dragon Ogres.

His Pikemen got to strike my Knights first but between their weak attacks, the Mark of nurgle, and my armor got nothing done.

The Dragon Ogres hit 6 times and, needing 2s to kill, manage to dial up 4 "1"s. Epic fail approaching?
Nah. The Warriors killed 7 Pikemen, the Knights another 7, and the horses the final three.

We called it a game since all he had left were a few halflings and archers across the table.

Looking back
I have made no secret of my distaste for certain parts of the hobby. I do not like assembling my troops. I am not a huge fan of painting them, though sometimes I enjoy it. Basing them is slow, tedious work.

But when the Knights make those glorious charges or there is an epic combat involving numerous participants, it is all worth while. That is great fun.

Seeing inferior troops do damage to superior troops can also be entertaining. I admit I enjoyed the combat between the Marauders and Pikemen, even though it proved costly (I permanently lost over half the unit) to my campaign plans.

But it is a fun part of the game. Those moments of fear when your best troops see the cannonball flying straight at them...then the relief as the mud sucks it down, never to be seen again.

Yeah, this just in...for me, playing the game is so fun it makes the other parts of the hobby worthwhile.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Warriors of Chaos and Beasts of Chaos Versus Lizardmen and Ogre Kingdoms

Last months games that I participated in were...desultory at best, hardly worthy of a report. The first game I took place in this month was a fun little scenario but did not make a good battle report. Correction; it makes a great one and here it is:
I see Minotaurs to my left that look dangerous. I charge, they die. I see some sort of Gor...Gor, Ungor, bestigor, Centigor, does it matter? They look dangerous, I charge, they die. I see other units. They look alive. I charge, they die.
Wow, that Entertaining? Illustrative of what happens when Chaos Dragon Ogres and Dragon Ogre Shaggoths are allowed to charge? Yeah, lets go with that one.

Well, then we elected to do a team game and randomly rolled to see who would team up.

Little secret; I wanted to team up with my brother Fullur. Nothing against Liam and Kev who are both good friends...but hey, I coulda teamed with my brother!
Then again, there was a certain synergy to rolling out the forces of Chaos as a team. We went secret dispositions. Liam and I elected to divide the field in two. We knew based on the lake in the back corner the Lizardmen were likely to set up there and Warriors of Chaos versus Ogre kingdoms is just fun, so he took the left wing and I took the right.
Our battle plan was down the middle, turn one flank, and roll them up.

I put two units of Chaos Marauder Horsemen in front, my Shaggoth behind one and 3 Chaos Dragon Ogres behind the other with my General in between. My biggest fear was a first turn Scraplauncher hit or Comet of Cassandra strike while bunched up.
Chaos Turn 1
There are certain limitations to an all-Chaos army. The battle needs to be fought in base to base contact with such little range. My Horsemen have a 6" throwing axe, his flying dude...Jabberslythe? has a 12" range, and otherwise we need to be in close combat. So turn one was pretty quick...march forward, but not a full march. I wanted to keep him from first turn charging me.

Lizardmen/Ogre Kingdoms Turn One
He generally advances, somewhat quicker than a walk but slower than a march...except his Scraplauncher.

Magic; uh-oh. I had 2 lists prepared, and went with the one with no magic. So they had 6 Power Dice to our 4 Dispel Dice. Comet of Cassandra was our fear, so we let Uranon's Thunderbolt go and it put 2 wounds on the Minotaurs. Forked Lightning we had to dispel since he had so few dice left, and Celestial Shield went through (and would matter!)
His Scraplauncher guess was dead-on to do some damage to my Marauder Horsemen. But it mis-fired...and the result was I got to fire it. My guess was decent, the scatter better. I hit 2 Leadbelchers, a Bull, and his Giant...and could only wound the giant.
His Leadbelchers then put a whopping 20 shots at my Marauder Horsemen, killing 5 of them. The 6th one somehow passed his panic test...on the second try. Score one for the Will of Chaos special rule.

Warriors of Chaos/Beasts of Chaos Turn 2
I pondered and pondered. I thought my Dragon Ogres could hit his leadbelchers...but it would be C-L-O-S-E. If I failed, he would get my flank with his giant. I could be in deep trouble. I almost charged, then changed my mind.
Unfortunately, I would have made it. It is unfortunate because my General, subject to Frenzy, WAS within range and now charged in alone.
I moved my Horsemen to make the giant charge them so he could not flank my general or hit the Dragon Ogres and moved my Shaggoth up on the right flank, ready to charge the Scraplauncher next turn.
Meanwhile, one Ungor Skirmish herd came on...on opponents choice of table edge, so they started behind us. Second one came on on our choice, the left flank. The Jabberslythe flew behind the enemy lines.
His Aura did nothing...his tongue of flame attack also whiffed. My Marauder Horsemen could not hit the Giant for whatever reason...still shell-shocked maybe?
Close combat. First up, declare Word of Agony to shorten the odds...or I could just forget it. Fortunately, I did enough wounds to outright kill an ogre and he could not wound back. I( won by 2, he passed his test and remained. Oops.

Lizardmen/Ogre Kingdoms Turn 2
The Giant terror-breaks the single Marauder horsemen, so that unit is done having done nothing. Then the other unit also fails their terror test, flees, and their whole purpose...keeping said Giant from charging my Dragon Ogres...was not only not served, it would keep my Horsemen well out of position to do anything for at least two turns even if they rallied.
So his Giant charges in. he does some reforming and adjusting to give himself my flanks if the combat is drawn or nobody flees. Over on the left the skinks surround the Gor Raiders and go to town.
Uranon's Thunderbolt puts 2 wounds on the Jabberslythe. Comet of Cassandra is successful and we cannot stop it with all our Dispel Dice. It lands dead center on the Minotaur unit.
The Scraplauncher only hits one Ungor and fails to wound. The Chameleon Skinks prove their worth, however, putting 6 wounds on the raiders which allows him to throw his javelins at the jabberslythe. Say goodbye to the Jabberslythe.
At this point, Liam and I are in trouble. Our most potent moidel is dead, our left flank is bottled up and being shot to ribbons, our right flank is in bad shape with the very real possibility of being flanked and destroyed in one or two turns.
His Giant charged so attacks first. Fortunately, he gets a harmless "3", I pass my toughness test, and get to attack back.

News flash; Chaos Dragon Ogres with a champion can make 13 S5 attacks. The giant dies, falls on the Leadbelchers battling my general, though he does no damage. The Dragon Ogres over-run into those leadbelchers. They get to attack first, kill 2, my General can only manage 1 wound and takes one himself.
The last Ogre breaks. This causes the next unit...which has his break and the scraplauncher, also within 6", also breaks. It runs through his Bulls bringing up the rear...who promptly fail their test and flee straight off the table.

Chaos Turn 3
This turn plays itself...sort of. I charge all his fleeing stuff which either runs off the table or is caught. In one turn 1000 points of Ogre Kingdoms leave the table. We now have about 1500 points to concentrate on the Lizardmen, though most of our army is out of position. No problem, this is just turn three.
Unfortunately, our team had an epic fail moment. For fear of getting shot by the poison javelins, Liam chose not to move his General on Chariot and/or unit of Minotaurs even though they were gith dead center where the comet of Cassandra was going to hit (with like 3 markers!) most likely next turn as the special Skink character let him re-roll to see if it hit.
Lizardmen Turn 3
Epic fail on their part. He rolled for the Comet...a 1. No problem, he can re-roll it...another 1! Liam's oops might not cost us!
The skinks move into a building in the village off to the left. He moves his Scar-Vet General (who passed EVERY Stupidity test in the entire game!) to keep the rear of his priest-protecting skink block from getting charged.
Then he opens fire on the Chariot, wounding it 2 more times.

Chaos Turn 4
We could not get away with it forever...the comet struck. 3 Skirmishers die, a previously broken unit is finished off, the Chariot is hit 6 times and wounded once, the Minotaurs take 4 wounds...ouch. That hurt!

Meanwhile, he elected to flee my Dragon Ogres. At this point it really seemed the game was over. We had a commanding points advantage, he had almost nothing. I stopped taking notes...and then the game got epic.

Lizardmen Turn 4
In what seemed like a desperation move, he charged his 3 Kroxigor at my Chaos Dragon Ogres. Think about it for a second...he has 9 attacks needing 4s to hit to my 13 attacks needing 3s to hit. Both of us are likely to wound and allow no saves.
Turns out it was a brilliant move. He does a whopping 5 wounds, I can only wound him twice. I break...which breaks my Marauder Horsemen and Liam's Ungor herd.

My General had just enough to charge his skink block and had to due to Frenzy. I finally remembered word of agony which should average 2+ dead skinks. It whiffed. I had 5 attacks needing 3 to hit and 2 to kill. I put down 1 skink. My horse did one...which means I lost the combat to ranks, outnumber, etc., broke and ran.
What a turn-around! Suddenly, he looked to have the game in hand as we had very little not running.

His general ended up dismounted....which proved to be a break. It allowed him to charge the skinks in the building, win the combat, they broke and fled, he was now in the building.
Meanwhile, my Shaggoth charged his Kroxigor, who failed their Fear test, broke and fled.
He shot and shot and shot at my General who passed about 10 armor saves to survive.
My Dragon Ogres failed their rally test, but the General and Marauder Horsemen passed.
His Kroxigor passed their rally test with exactly a 7. Grr.
At the end, we both had 2 table quarters. We had killed both their generals, earning 200 bonus points. That brought our score to 1466, while they scored 1262. In a 2000 point game, that gives us my favorite result...Draw!
It felt worse. When his entire right flank disappeared on turn2/3, it felt like a massacre in the making. However, the skinks with buildings and rivers to hide behind proved very elusive and the Kroxigor proved more effective than the Chaos Dragon Ogres.
My Shaggoth managed to go the entire battle without ever actually getting into combat, though he did force some breaks.
It was an epic game with huge swings...when the Jabberslythe and Horsemen died, we looked to be on the wrong end of a massacre. A turn later, they looked to be on the wrong end of a massacre. Then a desperation moved turned brilliant, and again we looked to be on the wrong end.
Even as the last turn started, it felt like rally tests could turn the game in either sides' favor. Ultimately, a close-run, entertaining battle had the perfect result.
Lots of fun, and I hope to have many more games like that!