Again, I present to you a battle report from my local wargaming club, the WoW/Keepers. This time, I had to face an old battle-partner I also play Flames of War and Field of Glory with (although I have to admit that the last two systems had to endure a very thirsty time in the last months due to my lack of time for wargaming).
Anyhow, my partner Fels (german for “rock, stone”) wanted to test his new Empire units, meaning the Demigriffons and the Celestial Orcanium. We had played several times against each other, so I knew his well (and fully!) painted army quite good. I knew he had a favour for shooting, so there surely would be cannons, muskets, crossbows and a steam tank. As I had a nice time playing Dwarves at the Charity tournament, I decided to give the little lads another chance and fight cannons with cannons.
The choices for my army were quite obvious – sadly, due to the lack of a valid Army choice in our club at this moment, I had to hang on the outdated club-army-choice, which was a test to discuss army restrictions in public – which predictably failed. Due to the restriction of war machines, I had to leave the organ cannon at home. The Hammerers were also a choice I could not field, for there was a restriction for maximum 25 Hammerers per unit – a number way too short in times of the eight edition. But the Miners and the Rangers should give the Empire something to think about – I only had four units for the placement phase. With more than one hundred melee Dwarves and a good artillery, it should be a fair battle.
Dwarf Lord, General, GW, Shieldbearers, 1 x Rune of Shielding, 1 x Rune of Stone – 206 Pts.
Runelord, Anvil of Doom, 2 x Rune of Spellbreaking – 365 Pts.
Thane, 1 x Master Rune of Gromril, 1 x Rune of Shielding, BSB – 140 Pts.
29 Longbeards, GW, M, S – 392 Pts.
27 Longbeards, Ranger Upgrade, GW, M, S – 393 Pts.
28 Quarrellers, GW, M, S, C – 389 Pts.
25 Miners, M, S, C – 300 Pts.
Cannon, 1 x Rune of Reloading – 100 Pts.
Stone Thrower, 1 x Rune of Accuracy, 1 x Rune of Penetrating – 130 Pts.
Bolt Thrower, Engineer, 1 x Rune of Penetrating – 85 Pts.
General of the Empire, General, Steed, Barding – 119 Pts.
Hauptmann, Steed, Barding, BSB – 101 Pts.
9 Knights of the Inner Circle, Lances, M, S, C – 255 Pts.
Warrior Priest, Van Horstman’s Speculum – 105 Pts.
40 Halberdiers, M, S, C – 270 Pts.
Warrior Priest, GW, Steed, Barding – 86 Pts.
3 Demigriffons, M, S, C, Steel Standard – 239 Pts.
Witch Hunter, 2xPistols, Arabyan Carpet – 105 Pts.
20 Crossbowmen, M – 190 Pts.
20 Musketeers, M – 190 Pts.
5 Outriders, M – 115 Pts.
5 Outriders, M – 115 Pts.
Great Cannon – 120 Pts.
Great Cannon – 120 Pts.
Celestial Orcanium – 130 Pts.
The only real surprise was that Fels had left his steam tank behind – but perhaps be thought him to be too expensive for his possibilities. Another very interesting choice was he Witch Hunter on flying carpet. Some months ago, we had a game where my Ogre Tyrant and his Witch Hunter, both seated on flying carpets, hunted each other over the battlefield. He chose my Dwarf Lord as his victim, which meant that all attacks against my king would be “killing blows”. I didn’t give much attention to this hero, which I had to regret sooner or later.
With only four units to place on the battlefield (Quarrellers, Longbeards, war machines and heroes), it was sure that I couldn’t react on the Empire, but instead had to choose the best corner for my troops. I planned to start in one corner and outflank Fels with the better movement of my Dwarves (a weird thought, but I relied on the movement granted from the Anvil). The Miners, which caused Fels more worries than necessary, should come soon enough to cause him trouble – the better in round three than round two, for I hoped to catch one of his cannons with melee units and would therefore need the Anvil in the first and second round.
I was surprised that the Empire answered my “refused flank” with the same manoeuvre by them and we faced each other on opposite halves of the table. Fels even joked that we would just shoot for six rounds and then could shake hands. Happily, we both wanted to have a nice evening of gaming, and so no one hided in his corner (it would have been a boring game indeed).
Fels gained the first round and rushed forward with most of his army. Even the musketeers marched to my Dwarves, for they had to make way for the Demigriffons behind them. Both Outrider units used their additional movement and got into the right flank of the Dwarves. As I had only placed the Quarrellers there, they would have to deal with this threat.
The imperial artillery bombardment was far less horrifying as I had expected – one shot not far enough, while the other one was able to hit and wound my cannon, but only caused the loss of two Dwarves – thanks to the rune of reloading, it would be able to answer this shot in my turn.
With the Outriders in the right flank, I decided that the Quarrellers had to deal
with the problem and move in their direction – with “quick reform”, they proofed
to be fast enough that the light riders couldn’t reach the Bolt Thrower in their turn. Meanwhile, the Ranger-Longbeards moved far enough to be able to attack the cannon in round two (with the help of the Anvil, of course). The cannon shot and destroyed the last piece of imperial artillery.
Sadly, the Witch Hunter proofed his worth: he flew in the “dead angle” of the Longbeards with General and Battle Standard Bearer, where he could not be seen. In return, he was able to shoot at my Dwarf Lord and managed to kill him with his killing-blow pistols. With one shot, he gained over three hundred points. And I had thought that he is more of a fluffy choice…
Fels concentrated the missiles of his Crossbows at my Quarrellers, but couldn’t kill all of them – as I had moved the last five or four ones in a wood where the imperial missiles got a -1 to hit – penalty. At last, the Demigriffons and knights attacked, but it was too late to make much effort. The Demigriffons were attacked by the Longbeards – with Strength 6, they had a chance to stand against them (luckily, Fels only brought three of them with him).
The Witch Hunter charged into the Stone Thrower, but was killed by the last standing Dwarf after several rounds of close combat.
After all, both our troop deployments surely were not perfect – while Fels’ musketeers had to move for making room for the Demigriffons, the placement of the dwarven Quarrellers and the Longbeards surely could have been better – but with one Ranger, one Miner unit and the movement of the Anvil, I thought that I wouldn’t have to care too much about deployment.
At the end, we parted with 617 : 791 points, a difference of -174 points in favour of the Empire. So this battle was a well-fought
draw. And so the long series of Fels’ victories against me were brought to an end. victory for Fels. Congratulations!