Saturday, 2 February 2019

Dipping a toe into Age of Sigmar 2.0

I remember Warhammer Fantasy died… Most of you might think it was when GW blew up the planet to Launch AOS but for my circle, it was with the release of 8th edition. We loved 7th ed. It had a stupidly steep learning curve but for those who persisted offered a really challenging and rewarding gameplay. 8th simplified things hugely, great for new players, not so great for us and I watched my whole game circle splinter off. Some went to Warmahordes, some found solace in board games while others went for historical games. Personally, I did board games for a few years, then delved into Flames of War, experimented with Epic Armageddon and of course Star Wars games. Each new game scratched an itch for a while but there’s always something missing. Star Wars Armada, for example, remains an amazing game with the brilliant depth of strategy, the closest thing I’ve found to the glory days of 7th but the tragic lack of support and new releases from FFG has really stifled the local community and limited much of the conversation about build and meta, I needed something more.

Star Wars Legion has promise, an excellent rate of releases and a solid system with a rich universe but it just hasn’t taken off in my local area like I wish it would, maybe when robots drop later this year that will change. It was through Legion though that I discovered AOS.  Cancon 2019 is hosting Legion for the first time and keen to support the game I jumped on board almost immediately. At the same time I noticed that AOS had sold out, I asked a casual question about how many players they had and almost died when someone told me it was over 200… WTF?!?! When AOS first dropped it was a laughing stock amongst competitive circles, hell it wasn’t even designed with that mindset, fair enough. It seems though that in the last couple of years GW has actually listened to its player base and made serious changes to the game (Yeah I have trouble writing those words too… GW listens…!) Long story short I started poking around, read the rulebook, watched some bat reps and Boom… new addiction time. Maybe I’m a lemming but the only real reason I even looked at this game is that 200+ other people already did!

Getting ready for Cancon 2019
So I ended up getting a ticket for Cancon and set about building an army and converting everything over. The basic plan was to convert my old 7th Ed Orks and Goblins army over to AOS and at first, that seemed easy enough. The destruction book includes every possible option you could want and so at first glance, it's just a simple matter of plug in all my old models and good to go!

  

  

The first couple of games to get my brain around the mechanics and the army changed pretty dramatically after each iteration. What I quickly realised is that you can happily mix orcs, goblins and anything else you like but none of it actually synergises well with anything else. So I quickly dropped the Ork components for more goblins to see how that goes. The final list I’ve settled on for Cancon is an absolute horde of Goblinz supported by characters and war machines who can act fairly independently. It really is just a hodgepodge of stuff that kinda doesn’t suck. It was another AOS gamer who saw the list and gave it the name that sticks ‘Destruction soup’, here’s the final product:

Destruction Soup MKIV

Allegiance: Destruction
Mortal Realm: Ghyran

Leaders
Gitmob Grot Shaman (80)
Madcap Shaman (80)
Troggoth Hag (380)
Tyrant (160)
- General
- Massive Ogor Club
- Artefact: Ghyrstrike 

Battleline
60 x Gitmob Grots (270)
- Bows & Slashas
60 x Gitmob Grots (270)
- Bows & Slashas
60 x Stabbas (360)
- Pokin Spears & Moon Shields

Behemoths
Aleguzzler Gargant (160)

War Machines
Grot Spear Chukka (120)
Grot Spear Chukka (120)

Total: 2000 / 2000
Extra Command Points: 0
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 238

Overall, it’s got some good magic options, solid tank options with the Troggoth and some potentially good shooting attacks. The release of the Gloomspite book a couple weeks before Cancon tragically didn’t help much, it looks like Gitmob is basically being erased from existence so no help there and as before nothing synergises. After spending a few hours with the new book I realised I could make a much more effective army just by making my destruction soup into a proper Gloomspite force, that will be the next step. My biggest advice for anyone looking to start AOS at this point starts with an army that has a book, it’s so much easier. Not because of power creep really, just because the synergies between magic, heroes, unit buffs etc are clearly designed to support an army drawn from a single book in that style.


Getting a Handle on Strategy
Going into Cancon I’ve got a grand total of 4 games under my belt. The first couple were really just muppet wars as we worked out how the rules actually worked. After that I started to pick up at least some of the deeper interactions with this game. I’m really impressed at how GW have managed to create a game with a simplistic looking rulebook but with a huge amount of hidden depth. There’s a bunch of stuff that, back in the old days, I would have sworn the game couldn’t live without and yet… here we are! Funnily enough the more I play against good players the more I realise just how little I understand about the game. Think of it like this, I’m used to the first round of a comp being the seal clubbing round… I’m not used to being the seal!

The last game I played was against Phoenix Guard, good player, good army. It went about as well as you might think, lasted about 2 turns before it was clearly all over. But my takeaway from that shemozzle was some really good ideas to refine the list further and some excellent strategic decisions that I wasn’t even aware of before the game. Issues like controlling the order of attacks, for example, is a huge factor I hadn’t considered. MKIII of ‘Destruction soup’ was full of hammers, units that maximise damage output. The problem was that I couldn’t go first with all of them and some ended up getting smashed by the enemy hammer before they could swing. MKIV has a much better balance between hammers and anvils which should solve that. I also learnt a heap about controlling the way you take casualties off. If you’re unit is getting munched by 2 big hitters, for example, it may be possible to reduce the damage with good timing and casualty removal. These sorts of nuances are unique to AOS and represent hidden depth. Actually having to translate from the old fantasy mentality and strategies is super complex and I’m thoroughly enjoying the lessons learnt each time my army gets splattered. When I do my battle write-ups for the comp I’ll be sure to focus on these lessons, if you’re reading it maybe you can learn a bit too!

It feels like I’ve mastered the basics but now I learn how to play the actual game. Guess I’d better set a realistic expectation before I go to Cancon and we will just see how it goes!

  

How amazing is the AOS community
Being part of a big completive community is something I didn’t actually realise I was missing until I found it again. The quality of the community is just as important to the longevity of a hobby as the system itself I reckon. Star Wars Armada has only lasted as long as it has because of the great community supporting it, Star Wars Legion has an amazing Discord and TTS crew bringing players together from across the world. Epic Armageddon was resurrected by community and the Aus crew are a brilliant bunch, keeping the scene punching well above the weight a dead system should have.

AOS seems to have brilliant support too, a truly obscene amount of streamed games on Youtube from dedicated hobbyists along with hobby and painting guides to fill the backdrop of my painting time. An endless stream of awesome images and army building discussion through FB to give me some inspiration for new ideas and some brilliant podcasts and youtube streams. My current favourite is the Doom and Darkness bat reps on Youtube, short vids, effective discussion of strategy for new players like me and that uniquely Australian spin.

I was also amazed when all the pre-Cancon streams kicked off and suddenly we have AOS experts giving detailed rundowns of every single list in the tourney, that’s hundreds of lists being explored individually, by dedicated hobbyists. Sadly my biggest takeaway from watching all of those reports was to realise just how C grade Destruction Soup actually is ☹ Still, balance that with all the good ideas I have to revise it post-Cancon and I’ve got everything I could possibly ask for!

So how do I rate my chances?

Well, I’ve got all of 4 games under my belt going into Cancon so clearly I’m an expert… And my army has some solid strengths but some really significant weaknesses. I’ll be happy to break even with wins/losses this event and stoked if I manage to win 4/6 overall. The biggest problem I have is that even if I get everything right and win my games I will inevitably rise high enough to take on the army that I just don’t think I can beat in a straight fight. The current power armies will cause me some big issues, I think I can do vaguely ok against daughters and sigmarines but it will depend on what’s in their lists. Anything with huge magic phases like the Undead lists will cause me grief and sylvaneth are particularly scary because of the massive damage output from monsters like Alarielle that I just can’t realistically kill. I’m sure that at some point over the weekend the fact that my army lacks any decent mortal wound capacity will become really obvious. Something that Gloomspite Gits won’t have any issue with! I plan on doing a write up of my games as I go so I guess we’ll see how my predictions play out! Should be a great weekend regardless. 

Game Rundowns


Game 1 - 3 places of power - Charles Black: Sylvaneth

How wierd is this, Charles and I go way back to the days of Warhammer 7th Ed and he was a strong opponent back then. I’d flagged his list as one to watch in the pregame show as well and I knew that my army didn’t have many answers for his, it’s just a simple case of tier difference. Still, this would be 5th game ever and my first against Sylvaneth so let’s make the most of it. 


Deployment
Most of the woodies deploy in the ether ready to appear from woods turn 1. Lots of extra forest drops blocking LOS and causing other shenanigans. 

Sylvaneth roll a d3 and get 3 special tactics, the ones that matter were the free move before game and that all of my shooting and magic would be limited to 12” in turn 1...

Turn 1
Sylvaneth win initiative and go first. 

Alarielle goes first cracking a Soul amphora raising 20 dryads. Followed by spending a command point. Gyrans wrath so the army can reroll all failed wound rolls.

Magic kicks off with Throne of vines on Alarielle meaning she gets a buff to cast everything that follows. Alarielle geminids kills 2 gobbos. Debuffs Troggoth and goblins and finally a mystic shield on Durthu. Dryad hero raises more dryads. So by the end of the magic phase, there are 30 extra dryads on the board! Many more dryads drop down from space.



In the shooting phase the spear from Alarielle misses but Durthu puts 4 wounds through on the Troggoth.

Sylvaneth finish in control of 2 points. If I’m being honest this game is already over. I couldn’t kill either Alarielle or Durthu under the best circumstances with my army and because this mission is 3 places of power that’s the only thing that will make a difference. Let’s keep going though just to see what else the sylvaneth can unleash. 

Goblin turn 1
Troggoth heals 4 wounds. Go Hag

Not much magic or shooting due to my range being limited to 12”

Goblins advance in general. The big angry gargant gets in early Giant charging and killing 6 dryads, now I’m only 24 kills short of getting him back to what he started with. 



Can’t quite reach an objective on the right and the other 2 are firmly in the hands of Sylvaneth. 


Turn 2
Sylvaneth win initiative and go first

Alarielle trues fo cast throne of vines but troggoth stops her doing 2 wounds, moral victory. 

Sadly this was quickly followed by metamorphosis doing 3 wounds on troggoth and 3 more from geminids after they were recast.

Dryad hero grows 10 more dryads putting them 34 higher than at the beginning of the game...

  

Sylvaneth stop playing with their food and advance...

Giant spear from alarielle does 6 wounds on troggoth, durthu finishes her off with verdant blast. Bugger.

In combat phase.

Alarielle kills 16 goblins, dryads kill many more..


  

Giant manages an impressive 2 wounds in return... and for goblins gave Alarielle a good stabbing for one wound. 

Battleshock on the left was horrendous due to no character being in range (and alive) to stop and and the game is called due to lack of goblins remaining in general and no real possibility of achieving much else. 

Reflections
If I’m being honest the game went about as I predicted it would. Charles list is one that I have huge problems with in the best of scenarios largely because my damage output isn’t high enough to counter the big heroes like Alarielle and Durthu (ethereal). I’ve mentioned already that a big weakness of my list is a lack of mortal wound output and it hurts in this matchup against 2 big heroes with 3+ saves.

Charles strategy was pretty much game-winning immediately too. Capitalizing on the fact I really can’t hurt those two heroes you’ll see that he tagged 2 points in turn 1 with Alarielle and Durthu meaning I now had to kill them in order to potentially win the game... so basically game over.

One of my big questions this weekend too is how much magic I need in order to be competitive, the answer in this game was more than I had. Magic dominance gave Charles a big advantage because as you saw he had summoned 20 extra dryads by the end of turn 2 (not including the 20 that Alarielle did with her ability). His army finished bigger than it started! If I had enough damage output to overwhelm his healing spells I could have survived without the magic but I didn’t have that either. Good information to help me when building the Gloomspite.

I think the only thing that surprised me was how quickly the Troggoth went down to shooting. Alarielle and Durthu basically took her a part in 2 turns, again magic hurt with the mortal wounds from the balls accounting for 5 wounds overall but the rest was just Alarielle spear and Durthu blast.



Game 2 - Skaven - Better part of Valour



Skaven finish deploying and elect to go first.

  

Lots of noise and lights in the magic phase but nothing much happens though. Skaven are much more forgiving than sylvaneth so far!

The noise does herald a big skaven advance across the table to put pressure onto my objective points.

A tunnel opens on my left flank and another 40 clanrats come pouring out. Suddenly that flank doesn’t look so good!

Warp lighting cannons blasts the goblins on my left flank doing 5 wounds.

Goblin turn 1

Huge advance all round as we surge across the table, a little bit of magic but the only thing that matters is that the gitmob shaman buffs the 60 grots on my left flank who then do a big shot putting 9 wounds on thanqual and bone ripper. Bugger it says the goblins. Charge.

Bolt throwers in the middle take 5 wounds off bell and the rest of the army surges forwards.

On my left the Gits kill 8 clan rats but both chaos units managed to get +1 to hit off chaos ability. Even weakened they killed 17 rats and of course I had out distanced my command bubble so battleshock killed another 14. Rookie error really! Fell for thanquals trap.

  

Turn 2

Skaven win initiative but their magic fizzled a fair bit overall, troggoth managed to dispel mystic shield and do 3 wounds on the warlock for my trouble!

Skaven mostly advance on the run, surging towards the middle of the table.

In the shooting phase the warp lighting cannon kills 2 goblins on left but thanqual kills another 7. Ouch . That combat continues to badly with Thanqual continuing to shred the goblins and along with the clanrats and battleshock the full unit is wiped from the board.... left flank gone....

Goblin turn 2

Magic goes off! D3 wounds on the bell. Debuff on the central clanrats. D3 mystic bolt on thanqual, a little ray of sunshine but it didn’t last long. Shooting sees the bolties and various arrows take the screaming bell down to a single remaining wound... so close.

4 failed charges mean that only the night goblins in the middle make combat. They kill 12 clanrats though. Well done boys.


Clanrats use a command point on the warlord to do gnashing something that gives him an extra attack this round and but only kill 4 goblins.

Goblins burn the left objective out of desperation. Securing 2 points.

Turn 3

Skaven win the roll off again and take initiative

Bell gives every rat within 13” a bonus attack and then casts cracks call which is dispelled by the Troggoth which blows it up with her counter spell. Everything else either fails to cast or is dispelled.

Clanrats in the middle retreat from my super effective goblins to conserve their losses and consolidate on the objective.

Thanquol and a cannon take 10 wounds off the hag. She’s feeling a regen is called for but she’s still going strong...ish.

No combats to speak of this turn.

Goblin turn 3

Huge movement across the board as we realize we are running out of time to force more pressure on the skaven objectives. Not much shooting happens just a few random wounds here and there from bolties and vomit.

In the combat phase everything goes for it however.

On the left the giant topples thanqual after successful charging for a second time this tournament. Go Giant! The troggoth takes out the warp lighting cannon but the skaven do 6 wounds in return to her.

  

Skaven reply on my right by using a command point to give the clanrats fighting the tyrant and friends a bonus attack. 97 attacks... no that wasn’t a typo. 32 dead goblins!


Lots of death around the board as we grind each other down. Ogre tyrant finishes out the turn doing 9 wounds to the skaven on my right flank.

Goblins spend 2 command points to avoid battleshock this turn.

Turn 4

Skaven won initiative and went first... again.. damn.

Magic was uneventful but given that this would be the final turn for us due to time I was pretty sure it didn’t matter.

The clanrats in the middle fall back. On the left more rats continue to batter away on the Troggoth.

Skaven on my right also retreat but have 32 clanrats in range of their objective to my 28. This will be the last turn so that’s essentially the game done. Skaven will get 12 victory points for their own objectives while I will only finish with 10. One more turn or a win of the initiative roll was all it really came down to.

Skaven warp throwers from the storm fiends take 6 wounds off the tyrant just for the lols and the game is called with burning skaven objectives as the backdrop. So close.


Reflections.
The biggest mistake I think I made was turn 1 advancing on Thanquol. That flank was too light for me to risk those grots and losing them passed initiative to my opponent. In hindsight I then tried to compensate by sending over the giant and the troll who were never going to kill enough to take the point off a horde of clanrats. I would have been better served just writing off that flank and sending the monsters into the middle to guarantee I took that point or forced an early panic burn, either of those options would have beat the skaven. After that the only chance I had to really win (given we only got 4 turns in) was to win initiative in the last round, any time you’re relying on a dice roll you know you done stuffed up.

Game 3 - Flesheater Courts - Border War



Flesheaters deploy first and take the initiative - A few buffs go off in the magic phase and the Troggoth plinks 3 mortal wounds onto a vamp lord on dragon thanks to its dispel attempt. Glorious.

The flesh eaters then proceeded to bring their actual army onto the board with 3 units of 10 ghouls suddenly appearing along with a pair of vargulfs.

  

Like a hidden signal the arrival of these reserves would trigger a mass forward momentum

Goblin turn 1

Not much magic or shooting with everything out of range. Except for the bolt throwers that I forgot to shoot... whoops. Damn hot it in here.

  

Just a general advance with nothing much to report, next turn will be huge I’m guessing.

Undead turn 2
More ghouls turn up on the flank from the warscroll rules. A 10” buff bubble appears around the lord on terrorgeist and a huge amount of advancing occurs.

Huge charges coming up in a second! The vampire on terrorgeist charged directly into the giant and the big beastie opened his giant maw and swallowed the giant in one go, a tragic blow to goblin morale.


Goblin turn 2

The green horde quickly turns from despair to thoughts of revenge for our slain giant. The troggoth, Tyrant and goblins all heading directly for the terrorgeist who ate out big mate, revenge was quickly achieved with bits of vampire and bone spread across a wide area.

  

Goblins turn 3

Win initiative. Double turn!

Goblins barrel forwards to try and take the heart straight out of the undead. Knowing how quickly their units can be restocked the focus is not he vsrgheists and heroes buffing the army. Both vargheists die to shooting from many many bows + vomit+bolts+guns and the green tide continues with a charge into the crypt horrors slaughter the unit.

Goblins on my left continue to battle it out reducing the ghouls to a single digit each.

  

Goblins on 11 points now - maintaining their lead, just. 

Undead turn 3

Many ghouls come back between the extras from the warscroll and the hero restoring the missing ones most of my hard work in the previous turn gets undone.

Zombie dragon lord gives himself rerolls to wound on a 12 to cast. That’s going to sting. The big fella charges directly forwards into my central goblin blob and bits of goblin start flying everywhere, the boss told them not o be scared though so they bravely fight on.

  

Turn 4

Goblins win initiative

The horde swarms over the last remaining zombie dragon and overwhelm his defenses with too many targets.



Undead. The last ghouls and vamps charge in for a glorious final swing but the goblins have taken the day by holding down 3 points of objectives for most of the game.

Reflections
Goblins did really well this game, I was freaking out when all those ghouls turned up on the flank but thanks to -1 to hit from the nets the moonclan grots proved amazingly resilient.

The other key I think to taking down Flesh Eater Courts is to shoot the big ones, without the magic their ability to heal and buff is more limited. This game I did a good job of focusing down a single target each turn and noticed a big difference between my right flank where the dragons and vargulfs went down fast and my left flank where the ghouls just wouldn’t die. Definitely a solid strategy for the next time I draw these guys.

Game 4: Ty Swan -  Wanderers - Relocating Orb



Ty has a one drop army so takes first turn after deployment is finished.

Turn 1

Elves win initiative and begin by bringing on more glade guard up on my flank... soo many bows.

  

A quick push up the field for the elves to begin chasing the orb around the board was quickly followed by the sky darkening with many many arrows. And as a bonus all the arrows are on fire (bonus rend) thanks to the realm ability this turn... great.

As the smoke cleared the elves had fired 69 shots killing 26 goblins and a shaman. Another 24 soon followed from battleshock because my army doesn’t start with a command point to stop it. Apparently, he can have more shots too because some had to move within range and they get 2 shots if they don’t have to move!!!


  


Goblin turn
A big advance and serious return fire. Killing a few archers and a unit of glade riders on my right flank. Not much though and there’s still sooo many bows.

Orb goes wrong direction heading right towards the elves.


Turn 2
Goblins win initiative and take the double turn, honestly I think that was the roll of the game. Another volley like I copped in turn 1 and I wouldn’t have had much left. Instead the goblins advanced on mass and proceeded to return fire.

The remaining gitmob shot the eternal guard off the board, troggoth vomited on elves, bolties took some more off, tyrant missed completely with his pistols cos he’s rubbish.

In the combat phase the troggoth killed a few more, but the real star was our giant who charged into and killed a bunch of glade guard, rest died of the unit from battleshock

 

Elves turn 2
Incensed by the death of so many elves the remaining glade guard unleash arcane bodkins doing 12 wounds and slaying the troggoth, this would free up two waywatcher heroes and the double shoot elves in the middle who promplety cut the Tyrant down while he was reloading his pistols... I think this is called a cascade effect.



At the end of turn 2 we have both claimed the orb points twice for 4pts each.

Orb swings back towards goblin lines, that was lucky!

Turn 3
Elves get a double turn!! Oh crap.

The hail of shots continues. 15 common goblins, 9 night goblins and 7 wounds off the giant but not real combat to speak of

Goblin turn 3
A bit of shooting but not much left now, failed most of my charges so only the giant had a swing

3 points for goblins and the elves missed their chance this round so the gobbos are pulling ahead on vps.

Turn 4
Goblins win initiative and get another double turn.

Advance and charge, it’s all we can do, the orb is in our back lines so the focus now is killing every elf in range.


  

Elves turn
As has become a familiar pattern, more arrows fly, more goblins die, nothing much left on the goblin side except grunts but we still control the orb.

At the end of the turn the moves in a very nice fashion deeper into goblin territory. Realistically it is well beyond reach for the elves and the goblins are now 4vps ahead.

Turn 5
With the orb so deep in goblin territory the elves realize there is nothing else to be done and the last elves fight to take more goblins down with them. Not much else to say. Goblins finished with a safe VP lead but more casualties than I even thought possible in 5 turns.

Total goblins remaining 45 from 204.
Total elves remaining 3.

The definition of bloodbath.

Reflections.
Orb is stupidly random. I really only won that because of where it went - turn 1 is ran away from me towards enemy territory and I was struggling to catch up already. Turns 2-4 is came back my way consistently, this gave me the luxury of focusing down enemy models rather than having to worry about getting guys in range etc. Maybe i still could have won had it stayed more centrally but if it had gone 3 turns into elf territory I would have had no chance.

Wanderers are insanely shooty - this game swung madly on double turns, I got 2 of them and the wanderers got 1. In their one double turn they killed the tyrant and the troggoth hag, easily. I think one more turn like that and it would have been all over for the goblins. The rate of attrition was just that horrendous.


Game 5 - Legion of Sacrament - Knife to the Heart


Turn 1
Undead finish deploying and give goblins the first turn

Goblins slowly advance... bolties fire on chainrasps but don’t inflict a wound.



Realistically I have no intention of advancing my tier 3 goblin horde into his tier 1 Arkhan undead army...

Vampires turn 1
Not much magic happens because we are simply too far apart for anything much.

The chainrasps surge towards the goblin lines, confident in their ethereal nature keeping them alive (ish), closely followed by a vampire on zombie dragon, all in all it’s a fairly slow advance though... could the vampires be scared of goblins?

Turn 2
Goblins win the roll off and let the vampires go first, free double turn for the vamps!

Vamps start magic with mystic shield on the dragon rider (with ethereal amulet) , this was followed by quicksilver swords who aggressively cross no mans land.

The undead continue a very cautious advance which the goblins are perfectly fine with! I’m starting to think this guy doesn’t realize how powerful his army is.

Goblins turn 2
Goblins advance to within bow range and unleash their fury. After the entire army fires off we have killed 8 chainrasps!

Turn 3
Vamps win initiative and immediately resurrect everything I just killed. Great.

Arkhan pops a command point and gives all mages within range +6: range to cast, followed by a curse of years which kills one goblin. Phew.

Quicksilver swords comes out again but doesn’t kill anything and van hels dance macabre goes off on the chainrasps.

Chainrasps surge forward full of undead vigor followed by a zombie dragon and most of everything else the vamps can bring!




Chainrasps make a huge charge into the goblins but thankfully the dragon fails. Lots of casualties on both sides

Goblin turn 3
Troggoth gets debuff off against the chainwrasps. This is followed by a Vig goblin advance. Every bow in sight fired off at the necromancer as did the bolt throwers putting 2 wounds on the sneaky bugger.

In the middle the tyrant kills 10 chainwrasps and the goblins kill enough to finish off the unit with battleshock.




On my left the Giant quickly realized that 60pts of dogs was too much for it killing 1.5 dogs taking 5 wounds for his trouble.

Turn 4
Undead win initiative and take first.

Quicksilver swords turn on their caster, returning to the necromancer and killing him! Mystic shield goes off on the vampire lord on dragon, silly him not knowing that I have no chance to kill him anyway!

Curse of years fizzles again only killing one goblin. But the goblins cheers were soon crushed as a command point was spent and suddenly the unit of chainrasps we spent 3 turns killing comes back to life from the grave site... *sigh*

The vampire on dragon bravely charges the lone goblin mage... you don’t need to know how that went.


  

The giant continued to bash away at dogs doing 3 wounds and taking another 2 back.

Goblins turn 4
The goblins on my right all charged into the vampire on dragon doing 2 wounds with shooting and 2 more wounds in combat.

The Giant decided discretion was the better part of valor and ran away. His goblin friends finished the job shooting all the dogs.

Turn 5
Undead win initiative.

Vamp drinks from his chalice undoing all my hard work in a move that has become common this game. *sigh*

Curse of years attempt number 3 kills... nothing *lol*

Undead surge towards our back objective but too little too late. More goblins are slain but no real progress is made.

Goblins turn 5
Seeing a worthy foe the tyrant charges into Arkhan who has been pincushioned by every greenskin in sight. The tyrant takes a big swing and chops Arkhan down to size.


  

Goblins win minor victory at the end of the turn through points

Reflections
This mission went pretty much as well as it could have. I was never going to have the momentum or tools to take the rear undead objective and if anything I was lucky to finish with as much as I did. Frankly if the vamps had surged forwards earlier there wasn’t much I could do to stop them.



Game 6 - Nathanial - Stormcast - Focal Points



Stormcast win initiative and give it to the goblins knowing most of my magic etc is out of range and gambling on getting the double turn. Goblins do a cautious advance to secure objectives and the bolt throwers kill one sequitor from the unit of 10 on my right.

Goblins take 4 VPs




Stormcast turn 1

Magical storm from the Lord Arcanum does 3 wounds to a bolt thrower but missing everything else on the table.

Sequitors run at me! Along with most of the rest of the stormcast army.


  

Evocators charge the moonclan stabbas killing 6 and a bonus 7 from battleshock. Bad gamble on my behalf, should have spent a command point. Though I didn’t know if he would have the double turn.... guess what...

Stormcast get 2 VPs

Turn 2
Stormcast double turn... bugger.

Everything runs at me, evocators and celestant prime drop down from heaven along with Gavrielle. A double command point buff from Gavrielle sureheart adds 6 to the charge range and shockingly everything makes it in. Slaughter ensues. 25 Goblins are shredded on my left flank but a command point spent keeps them on the board. Now I’m glad I kept that one last turn.

  

On my right flank the sequitors kill 14 and no command points are left to save another 13 from running away.




Stormcast fight back to get 4vps this turn putting them on 6

Goblin turn 2
Big counter charge with basically the whole army given that there is stormcast in my face everywhere.

The celestant prime cops a debuff to his armour from the troggoth hag before volleys of bolt thrower shots and vomit send him back to heaven for a nap. The troggoth then charges into sequestors on the left killing a couple but taking 6 wounds in return.

In the middle the Moonclan Stabbas finish off the last evocator and look around for more things to fight.

On my right the sequitors cop some serious damage with the giant killing 3 and the tyrant knocking out another 3, the gitmob basically just watch and eat popcorn in between getting their heads smashed in with hammers.

  

Evocators on my left kill 22 more goblins...goddam, should have withdrawn. Command point keeps the last handful alive.

Goblins get 4 vp. 2pt lead!

Turn 3
Goblins win initiative and take the turn

No magic this turn, everything failed to get off sadly. Shooting was also minimal, just pinging off a couple of guys.Goblins on my left finally remembered to retreat to slow down the rampaging evocators and keep their macro weapons away from the Troggoth. 

Combat was where it was at this round, the Tyrant continued his rampaging killing 4 sequitors and wiping out the unit. Objective secured.

The Troggoth hag then killed 2 sequitors wiping out another unit.


  

Goblins take 4vp this turn and maintain their lead.

Sigmarines turn 3
Magic storm kills a boltie off but nothing much else happens.

Lord arcanum on death chicken and the last sequitors charge into the moonclan grots killing a few more of this super resilient blob of goblins.



Evocators charge to clear the screen on left wiping them out.

Empire takes 2vp putting them on 8 but still 4 points behind the goblins.

Turn 4Stormcast concede given goblin lead on VP and remaining numbers.

Reflections
Remember to pull out if you can’t do anything - I realized after the fact that my goblins on the left fighting the evocators were never going to achieve anything. I did retreat but a turn late costing me another 20 guys. Withdrawing would have made them an even more annoying speed hump. Must remember that.

Clever pile in moves - in the last 2 games I’ve realized that I can actually pile in away from the thing that charged the unit in order to bring nets and a couple of spears into range of another target nearby. This game I forgot to do it initiating and the sequestors put 6 wounds onto the troggoth because I forgot. 



Tournament reflections

Overall it was an excellent introduction to Age Of Sigmar, I went into the comp with 4 games under my belt and finished with 10. Got to play a different army each time and got a really good sense of some of the scope for tactics and abilities.

The games also exposed some of the glaring weaknesses of my list. Whilst I felt ok against some armies when I drew the sylvaneth and the legion of sacrament (Arkhan) lists I basically knew from the beginning that my options were stupidly limited.

I did collect some excellent data which I can shove into my next wave of army designs, that’s something brilliant about tournaments that you can’t get just playing the regular crew.


In the end I won 4, lost 2. I think I could have won that Skaven game with a bit better play but there was no way I could have won that first game against the Sylvaneth. Considering the quality and limitations of the list and my total lack of experience before the event I'm pretty stoked with the result overall! Can't wait for the next one. 


Here’s some thoughts about my list:

Big blobs of goblins were amazing, hordes of bodies to contest objectives made a huge difference in multiple games, the only time I really struggled was when I didn’t have command points to deal with battleshock tests and the Gloomspite book has multiple ways to address that issue!

Bolt throwers were solid - not an auto include but I did find that having a healthy shooting phase was good against the lower tier armies. The problem was that the top tier lists tended to use a lot more ethereal troops and ethereal amulets etc. Or could heal easily enough that the attrition damage wasn’t good.

Giant was better than I thought he might be - didn’t fall over once, only died in one game and made solid contributions every time, awesome value.

Troggoth Hag was meh - I actually thought she would be amaze balls but overall wasn’t brilliant. She got easily taken out in 2 games by enemy shooters and her damage output just wasn’t that high overall. If anything her vomit was the most useful thing but at 380 points I think I can do better.

Magic was problematic - both the sylvaneth and vampire armies had magic phases that were just impossible to stop for me. Whilst my magic felt hit and miss at best. Certainly some solid spells but not reliable casting and not enough magic defense for my liking. I plan on trading some of the shooting points for better magic when I transition to Gloomspite.

Everything else I can think of are in the battle reflections, the challenge for now is to assemble the new army and focus on the nuance of movement and timing that I still caught myself missing opportunities on a few times. More games!


1 comment:

  1. Great report so far, Steve.
    I'm keen to learn as much as I can from your experience so I can compete in our next game.

    ReplyDelete