So Space Monkey has been working on painting up some DoC for a while. He is using it as practice for when he paints his High Elves, figuring even if you mess it up a bit...it is Chaos, still will look good.
He has enough painted up for a 1250 point game so we decided to try a small one. I speed-built a list of Warriors...which means I went with the old reliables. I started with a block of Chaos Warriors with shields and full command. They fullfill multiple purposes; if we roll up Watchtower, they give me a great unit to throw in there, if we roll up Blood and Glory I have a pretty reliable standard, and they are just a great choice anyway...rugged, tough fighters in any scenario.
Next I picked a unit of Skullcrushers because...well...they are awesome. A unit of Knights, and I had just enough points left for an exalted hero with shield to be my BSB (with Rampagers standard) on a juggernaut and another on foot to be the general.
We rolled up Blood and Glory which is probably my second favorite scenario (right behind watchtower) but since he only had 2 banners and this was going to be more of a learning game, we elected to just play battleline instead. And even that we modified. We really just set up our armies without paying attention to what the other guy was doing.
I put the big block of charriors on my right, the Skullcrushers in their left, the Knights behind the crushers.
He put his Bloodcrushers opposite my Skullcrushers, Bloodletters behind them, his Skullcannon on their right (from my perspective), his slaanesh damonettes on the far right (cleverly disguised as with elves for their better looking models) and hiding behind that 40k building in the far back left corner is a modified Ancient Treeman being converted into a D-Prince.
I won the roll to go first.
WoC Turn 1
Since I had not been able to fit in either Marauder Horsemen or the H-cannon and had no magic, I had a threat range of base to base. I advanced far enough that he had a possible but unlikely charge of about 17"...he would have needed a 10 with his Bloodcrushers. My Warriors advanced behind me and I started swinging the knights out wide to the right. (We had ruled the ruins in the center of the table buildings that could be moved around/through no problem, their only function was line of sight blocking, which was bad for me. I wanted him shooting his cannon at them, not my multiwound models).
DoC Turn 1
Space Monkey set his trap. He moved the Bloodletters and Bloodcrushers back, making it all but impossible for me to get the charge. He also flew his D-Prince out of sight but facing the middle of the table. If I advanced my Skullcrushers they would get combo charged, in the front by the Bloodcrushers and in the flank by the D-Prince.He moved the cannon forward and aimed it at my Skullcrushers...and as you can see in the picture above, I had taken my character out of the unit, so a well-placed cannonball could take out a Skullcrusher AND my BSB.
He had no magic he wanted to try, so on to the shooting phase. His movement backwards was an excellent plan. It meant he would get at least 1 and possibly two turns of shooting at me and get the charges if he so desired. Furthermore, I believed I had nothing to deal with his cannon or D-Prince and thought the Skullcrushers v Bloodcrushers was a fair fight.
If you have read any of my past battle reports and/or ponderings, you know getting my guys into fair fights is seldom part of the plan. I like to go in with overwhelming force so even if I fluff my rolls I win and when I win, I want them to need snakeyes to avoid running. He flipped the script where I would have a whittled down unit being victimized by being on the wrong side of an unfair fight. I was already planning a most un-Warriors like strategy of running behind the nearby building to get out of sight of the cannon and save whatever was left of my unit. If he came to me we would fight but I was not going into the valley of death.
If you are a long-time reader, you also know when I have shiny new models I want to put on the table, they have a history of...well, unperforming seems to generous. Such as the Shaggoth, who got shot off the table by Dark Elves in two turns. Or Galrauch who never got a spell off and never got into combat. Or...well, he had three units I would have been excited about if I were he. The cannon was one.
Apparently being within eyesight of me is bad news for other people's models as well...because it promptly misfired and blew itself up.
Meanwhile, his weakest unit was way out on my right. He tried to cast something, his book chart forced a test and his herald took a wound, then I dispelled whatever he tried.
Not a good turn for DoC.
WoC Turn 2
His cannon blowing up changed things. Now I just had to get to where when he flank-charged my crushers I could flank charge his. I moved the Warriors into the ruins and angled them to get him when he got me, moved my knights over to face the daemonettes, and put the BSB back with the Crushers.
DoC Turn 2
Now he had to come to me. His Daemonettes charged the Knights, his Crushers charged mine. While the 'nettes made it handily, he WOULD have made it with his Crushers...if not for that retrograde move back in turn 1. He came up 2" short and had moved back 2.5".
It did shuffle him forward to where I would need an 8 to get him...
WoC Turn 3
I thought the smart play would be to make him come to me or combo-charge the Warriors and Crushers but the fun play would be to declare the charge with the warriors on his Bloodletters and Crushers on his Crushers so that is what I did.
Note that both of these were much closer to "fair fights" than I like to get involved with...but I made both charges.
Except they turned out to not be all that fair. My Exalted declared a challenge, his champion Bloodletter accepted. I got overkill, rolled on the table, failed my LD test and became a Spawn...I did a couple wounds, he took more from instability and his unit shrunk precipitously.
Meanwhile, my Skullcrushers turned out to have a few advantages...such as higher strength due to ensorcelled weapons, more base attacks for the riders, frenzy which he does not get, and an extra Hero character throwing frenzied attacks...I had something like 19 extra S5 attacks wounding on 4s. He lost his last wound to instability.
But all was not well in the world of the Warriors.
Remember that herald and single 'nette? Well, his Herald got past the saves of 2 knights and the last two knights could not muster a single wound against him. They lost the combat...and ran. I can count on one hand the number of times I have ever had knights run. Wiped out? Sure. But RUN? Never.
Well, he naturally declared the charge with his 'nettes and ran down my Knights. Whoa.
So my Exalted BSB and he went into a challenge. He hit with every attack, wounded with all, I saved most. I hit him with half, wounded once.
Against his Herald and Bloodletter, he had maybe 3 attacks, did a wound. I had about 13 attacks...and hit 1, wounded zero. But won anyway because of ranks/banner, etc. He passed LD test.
Warriors Turn 4
I am 100% engaged so no moving, shooting or magic...straight to the battle phase. He again did a wound with his Bloodletters. I again could not wound, though this time I "only" had 10 attacks to his 2...and again I won based on ranks, banner, and he passed LD.
This time I saved all the wounds his D-Prince did and he did not save mine, failed his test and died to instability.
DoC Turn 5
The winds forced my Bloodcrushers to take a LD test on 3d6 and take a wound for every point I failed by...so a Crusher died outright. I finally put a wound on his Herald and we called it a game.
What went right:
His cannon blowing up was the game, really. Had it hit the crushers and taken one or more out (67% chance) and also done in my BSB I would have had little choice but to run hide behind the building or get wiped out in just a couple turns.
My BSB out-fighting his Lord-Level D-Prince was ridiculous. By Skullcrushers performed quite well against his Bloodcrushers.
What Went Wrong
My knights being unable to compete with daemonettes? Really? Getting run down? It was hilarious but completely unexpected. And hilarious.
My Warriors verse the Bloodletters lasted about 6 rounds of combat. His last guy staid single-handed through 3 or 4 rounds. I was in shock.
Overall, very fun, he got to see what his army played like on the field. Definitely a strong build, it gave my borderline power-game build all it could handle and was a misfire away from maybe running me completely off the table.
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