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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:21 am 
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The Cavalry Prince
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SpellArcher wrote:
Seredain wrote:
This would be a powerful unit, SA. The ward save is excellent. Only problem I see (other than the vulnerable shaman), is that I wouldn't really want one of my most expensive units overrunning sacrificial eagles every turn! I think that, in an army already cursed by its uncontrollable elements, losing more control by taking frenzied units would be playing with fire. But then I'm used to disciplined elves.

Frenzy is not so bad now as you can restrain the charge. I think if this was a unit that had to chop up the enemy's best to be worth it then getting stymied by eagles would be a big problem. Firstly though, it's a glorified character bunker, those two can really help the army without getting into combat. Maybe it can afford to take the 1pt bows and fire off a few arrows! I'd be nervous of taking a charge from something like your cavalry bus though.

Overrun is the big problem, really - frenzied units can't restrain from pursuit or overrun moves, so a sacrificial speed-bump eagle will pull them out of line easily. This is not good for expensive units like the savage ward-horde- which will be vulnerable to flanking moves made possible by the forced overrun and getting itself and its characters killed. Having said that, O&Gs have some cheap fast units like wolf riders that could potentially act as active shields against this sort of thing. As you say the support is important - I think more so when it comes to savage orcs.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:25 am 
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SpellArcher wrote:
Let's see what our green friend has come up with!

Voila!

Battle Report - High Elves vs Orcs & Goblins

Image

The Lists

I fielded the same list as before but my opponent, Not an Elf, had switched his up quite a bit.

Orcs & Goblins

Black Orc Warboss- Lots o' Choppas, Armour of Silvered Steel, 4+ Ward Save (with Black Orcs)
Night Goblin Great Shaman- Level 3, Feedback Scroll (with Night Goblins)
Black Orc BSB- Lots o' Choppas, Armour of Fortune (with Orc Horde)
Orc Big Boss- War Boar, Light Armour, Sword of Strife, Enchanted Shield, Potion of Foolhardiness (with Boar Boyz)

39 Orcs- Spears, Light Armour and Shields, Full Command (6x5)
50 Night Goblins- Spears and Shields, Full Command, 3 x Fanatics
10 Wolf Riders- Musician, Short Bows, Light Armour

22 Black Orcs- Lots o' Choppas, Heavy Armour
11 Big 'Un Boar Boyz- Spears, Light Armour, Shields, Full Command
5 Board Boyz
1 Boar Chariot
2 Spear Chukkas
1 Rock Lobba

1 Giant

Deployment

High Elves
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Orcs & Goblins
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Continued below...

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Last edited by Seredain on Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:53 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 7:10 am 
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Well played Sir
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Snow? Will they be even able to see you wearing all that white =P

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:14 pm 
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Love it, looks great!

That's a lot of icing sugar...

:)

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:42 pm 
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That's what happens when you irresistably force Iceshard Blizzard.

Looking forward to the report!

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:38 am 
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Awesome posts guys, Seredain I'm loving the info you keep posting and your attention to answering everyone really makes you an asset to these forums and worthy of all your victories.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 12:00 pm 
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Hi Seredain, I am really enjoying reading this thread but I have a couple of questions about your magic item selection for your characters.

1. I see that you have taken the dispel scroll for your AM and I have read your post about why you favour it over the silver wand. My question is do you think that the scroll is a better choice than the Annulian crystal and if so why?

The way I see it is that the scroll can help you out dispelling a big game changing spell which is nice, but I find that when an opponent wants to cast these spells they throw all/a lot of their dice at it giving them a good chance at IF (which the dispel scroll cant touch)! It is however half the price of the Annulian crystal so is a good choice if you’re struggling with points.

The Annulian crystal on the other hand helps you out every magic phase, by removing a power dice from their pool and giving it to you as an additional dispel dice (moving the pool 2 dice in your favour). This can mean that if they roll average (or poorly) for their power dice, the combo of +1 to Dispel and the Annulian crystal will mean that they will probably fail to cast any spells that turn! This can also help out if they try to IF a spell as with fewer dice their chances of pulling it off are lower giving you a decent chance of dispelling it.

My second question is about your prince taking the Giant Blade.

Seredain wrote:
The Giant Blade

An overdue answer, Nithe (with apologies), is that the extra point of strength makes a very big difference against opponents who have either Toughness 6 (3+ to wound is much better than 4+), or very good armour (1+ saves reduced to 5+ instead of 4+). In the important combats, these little extras make a big difference. Likewise the ability to carry a shield. Against Str 7 attacks the prince is rolling two 5+ saves instead of 6+ - a huge difference since he has only three wounds. In effect, then, the points I've spent on the Giant Blade don't just give me +1 to a single stat over and above a great weapon, they give me +1 to wound, -1 AS to opponents, +1 save and (of course) magical attacks. The cumulative effect of all these makes a big difference to Prince's combat abilities against the most powerful opposition. In that last battle, I had the Orc Warboss saving on 6's - if the prince had only been Str 6, the orc would've had a 5+ re-rollable save - much better odds for him.


The Giant Blade is nice and I can see the merit in taking it but it is a really expensive upgrade. I am tempted to take a simple GW as Str 6 is still very good (a 2+ AS isn’t that much worse than 1+), and spend the spare XXpts I save by making my prince far more survivable (+4 Ward). This is the big weakness I see with your Prince as he is very vulnerable to sniper spells which ignore his 1+ reroll able AS, these spells are fairly common and most of the ones I can think of don't allow an AS but do allow ward saves. A good ward save would also help you out when you take on decent enemy characters who will be giving out big - modifiers to your AS (or even ignoring it completely). What are your thoughts on making your prince a little less killy and a quite a lot more survivable?


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 1:57 pm 
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Bolt Thrower wrote:
That's what happens when you irresistably force Iceshard Blizzard.

Haha, the great shaman had a cold, I think.

Sardis Varrn wrote:
Hi Seredain, I am really enjoying reading this thread but I have a couple of questions about your magic item selection for your characters.

1. I see that you have taken the dispel scroll for your AM and I have read your post about why you favour it over the silver wand. My question is do you think that the scroll is a better choice than the Annulian crystal and if so why?

The crystal gives you better defence overall but the scroll is better protection from one game-changing cast (and casts like this happen in 8th what with the big spells and reduced numbers of power dice). Really, the crystal is more expensive for a reason- it's the more powerful item. Part of my choice is determined by the fact that I have only 20 points to spend on an arcane item, so my hand is forced. Still, the ability to stop a spell basically when you want to, and without relying on dice rolls, is a comforting thing.

Sardis Varrn wrote:
My second question is about your prince taking the Giant Blade.

The Giant Blade is nice and I can see the merit in taking it but it is a really expensive upgrade. I am tempted to take a simple GW as Str 6 is still very good (a 2+ AS isn’t that much worse than 1+), and spend the spare XXpts I save by making my prince far more survivable (+4 Ward). This is the big weakness I see with your Prince as he is very vulnerable to sniper spells which ignore his 1+ reroll able AS, these spells are fairly common and most of the ones I can think of don't allow an AS but do allow ward saves. A good ward save would also help you out when you take on decent enemy characters who will be giving out big - modifiers to your AS (or even ignoring it completely). What are your thoughts on making your prince a little less killy and a quite a lot more survivable?

The Giant Blade (2)

Try not to focus on the cost of the sword. Think of your prince's items allowance like this: I'm going to spend 100 points on items. At the end of it, what do I want my prince to be able to do?

I want my prince to be able to kill things that my other troopers can't, reliably. For these purposes, Str7 isn't '+1 strength for xx points', it's the difference between an enemy that lives and an enemy that dies- especially when we're talking about tough enemy monsters, heavily-armoured characters and even more especially when you consider the Talisman of Loec (which is much better when you're rolling 2+ or 3+ to wound with the Str7 as against 3+ or 4+ to wound with the Str6. Obviously, you being able to kill stuff quickly has an impact upon the wounds you suffer back. So, against hard opponents Attack is, as they say, the best form of Defence.

As for defence itself, a 1+ re-rollable armour save is comparable to the 2+ reroll plus 4+ ward against attacks which allow armour saves. Against Str 8 attacks, you'll get a 6+ re-rolled save against a single 4+ Ward; against Str 7 attacks you'll get a 5+ save re-rolled against a 6+ re-roll plus 4+ Ward. Against Str 6 attacks, you're looking at 4+ re-rolled save against 5+ re-rolled plus 4+ ward. Against Str 4 and 5 attacks, meanwhile, the prince gets 2+ and 3+ re-rollable saves respectively. He is, therefore, just as able to tank a large block (when you need him to), as a more dedicated tank prince, while being more killy against any units with Toughness better than 4 or an armour save better than 4+ (and that is a lot of troops).

So it's not really the sword you're paying for, it's a whole range of tactical options. But especially killing stuff.

EDIT: Oh I'm still working on the report by the way. It's on its way...
Deployment pictures and the orc list has been put in above.

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Last edited by Seredain on Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:52 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 4:12 pm 
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Greetings!

Thanks for posting new pictures. I see the O&G army changed a lot and I am looking forward that battle report :) In the meantime maybe I can entartain you with a battlereport of my own with a 2400 point version of your list.

Here is a link: viewtopic.php?f=51&t=34839

Cheers!

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 9:40 pm 
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I just wanted to take a moment to come out of the lurking shadows and mention how great this thread is. I appreciate the great work you have developed here and your willingness to discuss your tactics in a readable format, Seredain. I, like many others before me, have been inspired by your list and tactics to develop my own list and tactics to such a fine point as you have done.

My question is about chariots. I have somewhat of an unhealthy fascination with chariots. What I want to know is whether you think it is feasible for a group of lion chariots, with one driven by korhil, to serve in a similar role to your Prince, BSB, Helms bus. I posted my list elsewhere (link below) so as to not hijack/clutter up your thread with my rantings, but I would love any feedback you or any of your readers might have.

http://www.ulthuan.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=67&t=34844

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:36 pm 
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Looking forward to the report!

I keep checking back for it which probably means I should be doing something more productive but oh well
:)

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 12:24 am 
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Seredain wrote:
Try not to focus on the cost of the sword. Think of your prince's items allowance like this: I'm going to spend 100 points on items. At the end of it, what do I want my prince to be able to do?

Spot on. We have lots of ways of getting S6 attacks. Very few of getting a S7 re-rolling mincing machine. I'm having a terrible dilemma with my Chariot Prince choosing between Charmed Shield and Loec. The Shield will be gold dust against war machines but Loec gives him the killing power to survive combats.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 1:11 am 
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SpellArcher wrote:
Seredain wrote:
Try not to focus on the cost of the sword. Think of your prince's items allowance like this: I'm going to spend 100 points on items. At the end of it, what do I want my prince to be able to do?

Spot on. We have lots of ways of getting S6 attacks. Very few of getting a S7 re-rolling mincing machine. I'm having a terrible dilemma with my Chariot Prince choosing between Charmed Shield and Loec. The Shield will be gold dust against war machines but Loec gives him the killing power to survive combats.


What prevents you from taking both? Having the swordthingy and helm of fortune?

The way I see it, the sword is not in itself the crucial part. It's the combination of items that lead to its necessity.

Here's how I brake it down: it's very rare that the prince is engaged in close combat where he did not charge. As such, we're looking at maybe one crucial round of close combat per game where he needs this uberboost. Normally, I would say potion of strength and Lance would go a long way to give the Prince the killing power you want. This also gives the nasty S9 option which would totally dominate things like really tough monsters and stanks.

HOWEVER... When it comes to tough fighters you're looking to win the fight. We have one of the best items in the game for doing this - the talisman of loec. Problem is, you can't take it with the strength potion.

Because of this we have fairly few ways of getting to a reliable high strength which also gives us a hard-as-nails combat character. I've spent a lot of time recently looking at various builds and I've come up with the same solution as Seredain: disregard the cost and look at what you get. To be honest the item is a steal for high elves and kudos for realizing and proving it!

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 10:42 am 
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Curu Olannon wrote:
What prevents you from taking both? Having the swordthingy and helm of fortune?

My chariot and my level 3 eat lots of Lord points!

Curu Olannon wrote:
As such, we're looking at maybe one crucial round of close combat per game where he needs this uberboost.

I sort of agree but Seredain's bus can grind over several rounds if necessary and the Giant Blade wins even over something like the Star Lance for this.

Curu Olannon wrote:
nasty S9 option which would totally dominate things like really tough monsters and stanks.
It's strong but still only wounding the Stank on a 5+. These things are sods.

The way I see it Loec wins over the Potion because it re-rolls everything. It's not as good as under 7th as we usually re-roll to hit anyway and lots of attacks back increase the impact of the wound loss. Still though, any character or monster down to 2 or 3 wounds is in desperate trouble against it. It also means that you can often allow a charge on your Prince by something horrible as Loec gives good odds of finishing it before it kills you.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 7:17 pm 
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Battle Report - Continued

Spells
I got Flesh to Stone, Throne of Vines, Regrowth, Dweller Below (so all the good ones ;)).
My opponent rolled the Little Waaagh magic missile, Gork'll Fix It and Bad Moon Curse.

High Elf Turn 1

The silver helms moved through the village and angled to face the boar boyz while, on the right flank, the champions and eagle both advanced: the eagle to draw the small boar boyz forward and the champions to countercharge them. My units in the centre remained more or less stationary, excepting Lecalion's archers, who moved forward 5” to bring him within 24” of the enemy blocks...

But Dwellers Below wasn't going to go off this turn, because I only got three power dice. No spells went through.

The shooting phase went better, however, as my archers opened up on the wolf riders and killed 6- an excellent result marred only by the goblin cavalry's failure to panic. The repeaters quietly went about their business as usual and plugged two Big Un boar boyz- not bad at long range.

Orc Turn 1

Movement was heralded by the small boar boyz on my right declaring a charge against the eagle, who fled and duly forced a failed charge, placing the boars nicely within range of the champions.

As for the Big Un boar boyz, they'd finally found themselves opposite the prince's cavalry. The question was what they were going to do about them: either moving to block off their advance (albeit risking a charge from them next turn), perhaps with the giant in support, or they might just try and avoid them. The orcs decided that sweaty cowardice was the better part of valour and marched forward towards the white lions, passed the advancing elven knights in the village. The giant advanced in support and, to the centre, all the orcish infantry came on as expected. The wolf riders alone decided to stay put so they could get some more accurate shots off.

Magic saw the great shaman get a decent number of dice which, in conjunction with the magic mushrooms he was eating (+1D6 to casting value per cast- roll of 1 on this dice= miscast), allowed him to smash 4 or so of Lecalions's archers with a magic missile (panic test passed), and throw Curse of the Bad Moon at my lines, forcing my units to test against their toughness or suffer a wound. I held my breath but, fortunately, the vortex didn't reach my spearelves, landing just infront of them, directly on top of the chariot. The chariot and an archer or two took a wound, but that wasn't a big deal.

Shooting was less eventful. The few remaining wolf riders couldn't hit water if they fell out of a boat, while the rock lobba's missile, directed into the heart of the spearelves, scattered wildly. One of the spear chukkas managed to bring down an elven champion knight, but that wouldn't save the small boar boyz from the charge which was coming...

Image
The boars ride forward to escape the elf prince, effectively surrendering their right flank.
Image
The Bad Moon leads the greenskin advance while High Elven magic struggles to make an impact.
Image
The greenskins suffer on their left flank from elven missiles while the champion cavalry prepare for the charge.

High Elf Turn 2

The Elean Champions sounded their battle cries, lowered their lances and charged the small boar boyz, who held. The prince's silver helms galloped out of the village on my left on wheeled right into the rear of the big 'un boar boyz.

On my right flank, the 14 archers advanced 5” to add further pressure, but the rest of line redressed itself in only small ways. The chariot moved to get away from the Bad Moon but the spears, unable to do much, just gritted their teeth and stood their ground. To their left, the swordmasters shifted left 3” to avoid bad moon blues, while the white lions advanced a little to place themselves within charge range of the big boars. If a charge was made, the lions would happily start chopping the cavalry up and my knights could either counter-charge or, if things were going well, strike the orc centre. If the charge failed then my prince would get a devastating rear charge into boars.

Image
The fast elven knights exploit the massive gap opened on the orcs' right flank

Magic: Lecalion drew a mighty 9 dice, opened with Throne of Vines and then channelled all his remaining power into Dwellers against the 40 orc spears. The ground exploded and 20 orcs disappeared from view. Nice. Fortune rewarded me for being bold too, taking the bad moon vortex, which I hadn't saved any dice for, drifting towards the orc lines and away from my spears.

Image
BOOM!

Shooting was also good, seeing my archers destroy the wolf riders outright and my repeaters slay two more big 'un boars (after their companions made a lucky 3 armour saves on 5+).

In combat the Elean Champions actually only killed 3 boar boyz and lost 1 of their own, but this was still enough to force the break. The pursuit was disappointing, however: the boars fled off the table but my cavalry failed (infuriatingly) to reach the rock lobber, leaving them exposed to a round of shooting from the chukkas...

Image
The High Elves clear the orcish left flank...
Image
...and prepare to demolish the other.

Orc & Goblin Turn 2

The boars were readying themselves to charge to safety against the white lions (fine by me), but a fight broke out in their ranks, paralysing their efforts. My silver helms, standing immediately behind, chuckled. The rest of the orc army marched straight at my lines, excepting the giant and boar chariot which stayed back to set up a charges against the silver helms and white lions respectively, covering the flank of the orc spears.

Magic- and the few dice granted to the shaman were easily swept aside by my archmage, while the bad moon vortex swirled further into the open, interposing itself between the night goblins and spearelves. On the plus side (for the greenies), the great shaman dispelled Throne of Vines. Shooting, and the chukkas' only chance to save themselves from the champions. Being goblins, they blew it, both missing and one misfiring. Aha.

Image
The orc lines advance.
Image
Timmeh Two-Heads plans to end the silver helms' party with a counter-charge.

High Elf Turn 3

The prince led his knights at full tilt, crashing into the boar boyz' rear. On the far side of the field, the Elean champions hit the rock lobber. Other movement saw my white lions advance around the flank of the orc spears and to within range of a tempting long charge from the boar chariot, my swordmasters shift right to their original position in front of the orc spears (now that the bad moon had moved on), and, on the right, my 14 archers and chariot moved to the flank of the 50 night goblins. I was very happy with this move- if my opponent kept his goblins going forward, I could pin them with a nice flank charge. If he turned them to face my archers I could simply redeploy the chariot out of their way and shift the archers back for some 'shoot and retreat' harassment. In either case, my opponent wouldn't be able to focus an assault against my defensive right flank with both his killy black orcs and steadfast-breaking goblin column. I therefore had all the time in the world to fold up half the orc army before the half at this end really came into play.

Magic was a slightly underpowered 5 dice, but that was plenty enough for me to cast Throne of Vines (dispelled), and Flesh to Stone on the white lions (my archmage having left his unit and moved behind the hill to get in range), giving them the toughness they'd need to hold off a chariot charge. As for the bad moon curse, that was looking like more of a liability for my opponent than to me. Even so, he didn't choose to end it, perhaps feeling it would be worth the loss of a few goblins to have a shot at killing some more elves without having to cast it again. As things turned out, the vortex rolled onto the corner of the night goblin unit, wounding the great shaman and killing a couple of goblins.

The archers who hadn't marched took down a couple of goblins and the bolt throwers scored a couple of wounds on the giant. Fair enough.

Combat, then! The champions slaughtered the crew of the rock lobba with terrible ease and overran into the nearest spear chukka. Fine. Now for the slaughter of boars... except that my great cavalry bus rolled, in all, a magnificent seven 1's to wound. Seven! I managed to bring the orc hero down but three of his companions were left after the massive bungle. They didn't manage to kill any silver helms, however, and needed double 1's to hold. And guess what? My opponent rolled double 1's. Fantastic.

Orc & Goblin Turn 3

The giant charged the flank of the stunned silver helms and the boar chariot attempted (but failed) a charge against the white lions, putting it between the corner of the orc spears and the combat being waged against the struggling elf knights. Remaining moves saw the orc infantry advance, the great shaman leave his unit (to avoid Dwellers). The night goblins themselves, meanwhile, took the bait and reformed to face my flanking archers and chariot. They were now out of whatever important combat materialised in the centre of the field. Ace.

Image
Image
The night goblins, top right, take the archers' bait and rule themselves out of the battle for the centre.

Orc magic saw my opponent completely forget to do anything about his ongoing vortex, despite the fact it was sat right on top of his night goblins. Doh! This was bad because the only big thing that happened this phase (I dispelled the shaman's attempt to fry my 14 archers with a green fireball), was that the bad moon moved right through the night goblin block- corner to corner, hitting almost all of them and killing a fistful. Swell!
Image
Silly goblins.

The crucial combat phase started with my mighty elven heroes smiting the giant- the talisman of loec and the (appropriately named) Giant Blade proving invaluable. Even as great cheers rang out from the beleaguered elven knights, however, the giant used all his remaining energy to hurl his massive body down onto the unit. He was dead before he hit the ground, but so were 4 silver helms and a boar boy. The carnage was terrible but the elf heroes, at least, had been protected by their armour.

Image
Timber!

Despite the unintended boon that their falling giant had brought them, the remaining boars found themselves badly outmatched and they broke and ran. Rather than pursue and lose position, Seredain reformed his knights to face the boar chariot's flank and, beyond it, the rear of the orc spears...

High Elf Turn 4

The largest attack of the battle so far saw the silver helms charge the boar chariot, the white lions charge the flank of the orc spears and the swordmasters charge their front. On the right flank my archers and chariot charged the much weakened night goblin block.

The archmage moved over the hill and into the open, behind the swordmasters, to gain more targets for his spells. Meanwhile, in order to pin the black orcs in place while I destroyed the units surrounding them, the eagle (who had failed to rally on Turn 2 and had ended up behind the house- where he'd started), charged them in the flank. If he could hold, the black orcs would waste a turn fighting him (best case) and, if he fled from them, the black orcs would overrun into the small unit of archers which I'd moved up to receive them. The short point was that, with these small tactical sacrifices, the black orcs would be unable to engage the High Elf spears for another turn at least and, when they hit the archers, my spears would have a flank charge on.

Image
The High Elves launch their killing strike against the greenskin right flank...
Image
...while the greenskin left flank is pinned and harassed into inaction

In another disappointing magic phase, Lecalion managed to get Throne of Vines up (healing the eagle), but failed to cast Regrowth on the silver helms. During the shooting phase, the only targets open to the repeaters were the fleeing boar boyz sinced the damned great shaman was hidden behind the massive bulk of the orc warlord. The hits were good but my opponent rolled an enormous quantity of 5+ armour save rolls to ensure that one orc rider lived to keep running next turn.

Combat. On my right, the archers and chariot did well but not spectacularly, slaying perhaps 8 goblins (I think my opponent rolled three 6's to save out of the 7 wounds my archers inflicted!), and losing 4 archers in reply. The goblins were shaken but, thanks to the leadership of the nearby warboss, held their position. Nearby, the Elean champions chewed through their last war machine and reformed to face the flank of the night goblins. Next turn, the gobbos would be in trouble. The eagle, unsurprisingly pretty much bounced off the black orcs, killing one or two but then turning and fleeing. They couldn't catch it but overran into my waiting archers as planned, their flank exposed to my column of spearelves.

On my left, the prince, noble and silver helms absolutely shattered the boar chariot before overrunning into the rear of the orc spears – now surrounded on three sides by my army's best fighters. I can best explain what happened next with a couple of pictures:
Image
Now you see them...
Image
...now you don't.

The lonely black orc BSB, who my swordmasters had failed to bring down despite allocating 7 attacks on him (and rolling another load of 1's), punched my bladelord in the face before my forces finally overwhelmed him.

Now, some tactical silliness from me which deserves to be remembered. The way this combat phase should have gone, normally, is as follows:

1: Silver helms kill chariot, overrun into orc spear combat.
2: Silver helms, white lions and swordmasters break spears.
3: Silver helms reform (they can't pursue because they overran already); white lions and swordmasters overrun into flank of black orcs.
4: White lions, swordmasters and eagle fight against black orcs.

Now, I deliberately fought the eagle combat first for two reasons: firstly, by pursuing into the archers, the orc warlord would himself be engaged in base-to-base contact. This would mean that he would be unable to make way! through his unit to engage my attacking units and characters to the side or rear. As for the fact that my combat against him would be delayed by a turn, that was fine by me since there were no orc units which could come to his rescue – time was on my side. The second reason was that, in closing the door against my archers, the black orcs would turn further away from my elite units, meaning I could get in on the flank and rear (if I'd pursued before the eagle combat, however, both white lions and swordmasters would be in on the flank). In short, I thought I'd wait and get the certain kill.

My mistake was technical: in the end I fought the eagle combat first and then pursued with the white lions and the silver helms, reforming the swordmasters to face the black orcs' flank. In all the excitement my opponent and I had completely forgotten that a unit can only pursue or overrun once in a single turn. This was slightly academic, since the black orcs were surely dead anyway, but Fate was determined to punish me for my insolence...

Orc & Goblin Turn 4

So, this is how things looked for the greenskins at the beginning of the turn:
Image

Pretty bad, eh? Yes. I'd got the black orcs right where I wanted. Except I'd completely forgotten about the tiny little shaman hovering by the night goblins, looking shifty. Long story short, during his magic phase my opponent chucked seven dice (6 power dice plus special mushroom dice roll) at the big version of bad moon (large template, moves 4D6, models touched test on either Str, T or In as chosen by my opponent, failures suffer a wound with no saves), got it off irresistibly and hurled it 18” all the way along my line of knights, white lions and into my swordmasters. My opponent chose toughness as the stat test. He lost 2 or 3 black orcs. I lost a knight and a wound off Caradath (fine), along with half of my white lions and half of my swordmasters (not fine!). Bloody hell. I should have taken the pursuit move and fought another round of combat against the black orcs, alongside the eagle, last turn. Damn.

In combat I wiped out half the black orc unit (and the archer unit managed to survive!) but, even so, the look of the field at the end of this turn wasn't pretty...
Image
Aaaarrgh! The elven prince and noble carve their way into the enemy even has whole ranks of warriors fall beside them

High Elf Turn 5

Never let it be said that I don't prepare for the worst. The spearelves had positioned themselves so that any orc unit which happened to overrun into the nearby archers would present its flank to them for a counterstrike. They declared their charge and, along with the swordmasters, surged into the flank of the black orcs. My champion cavalry, finally free of its task slaying machines, charged the night goblin great shaman, filled with a thirst for vengeance. Once magic (not eventful) and shooting (RBTs finished the last boar) were over, they skewered the shaman with contempt and ploughed straight into the flank of the night goblins. The champions, archers and chariot then did bloody work and the gobbos were completely routed, the chariot thundering them down and overrunning into the black orcs' near flank. The one remaining combat, then, saw my opponent's last unit surrounded on all sides by my troops.
Image

Once again, all the orcs were put to the sword (though my last two archers were killed), the warboss broke and my knights ran him down. The enemy army was tabled and, despite the casualties of Turn 4, I'd only lost the unit of 11 archers. Another great day, then, but this time Lecalion would have to get working on those regrowth spells if he was to clean up the mess left by that bloody bad moon...

Image
Massacre to the High Elves!

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 7:52 pm 
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Another excellent report! Thanks!

I believe this time O&G army list was much better. However, I would include at least one if not two Doom Divers. They can be very accurate and would be able kill before they got to their positions. I will definitely post more comments later.

Thanks again!

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:46 pm 
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Ghogra wrote:
I just wanted to take a moment to come out of the lurking shadows and mention how great this thread is. I appreciate the great work you have developed here and your willingness to discuss your tactics in a readable format, Seredain. I, like many others before me, have been inspired by your list and tactics to develop my own list and tactics to such a fine point as you have done.

My question is about chariots. I have somewhat of an unhealthy fascination with chariots. What I want to know is whether you think it is feasible for a group of lion chariots, with one driven by korhil, to serve in a similar role to your Prince, BSB, Helms bus. I posted my list elsewhere (link below) so as to not hijack/clutter up your thread with my rantings, but I would love any feedback you or any of your readers might have.

http://www.ulthuan.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=67&t=34844

Hey Ghogra,

Thanks for your enthusiasm- and to everyone who's left kind comments recently - they really are appreciated.

The bottom line, I'm afraid, is that chariots are not a direct replacement for a cavalry bus. It's been mentioned elsewhere already that chariots are both slower and more vulnerable to missiles than nights, but this isn't the crucial point. If you look over the section where we've talked about breaking hordes, you'll see how important the 2 ranks of knights is. Having one rank left at the end of combat is, after the casualties you inflict, often the key to breaking enemy units. Chariots have no ranks, meaning you have to kill an enemy unit down to 0 full ranks to get rid of steadfast. That's asking too much to be a reliable strategy all by itself.

Use chariots to support the charges of another unit- to provide the kills while it provides a couple of ranks. A lion chariot running alongside a block of helms, for example, would be deadly. I'd be happy to take a more detailed look at your list- give me a little time and I'll get back to you.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:58 pm 
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Thanks Seredain. I look forward to your comments.

I have been concerned about breaking steadfast with the chariots. The lion chariots pack a heck of a punch into a tiny package but run into the same troubles my giant did back in my O&G days. Winning combats doesn't mean much if you cannot break the enemy.

By the way, the new battle report is awesome. Its amazing to watch as all your pieces come together.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 2:50 am 
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Seredain,

Great report, and thanks for the effort you put into this thread, it is very inspiring! The pictures have really brought the tactics to life for me, seeing how your army operates.
And great looking models :)

From these two O+G reports, it is clear that dominance of the movement phase is crucial to your wins, especially on the flanks. Your flank threats and charges in the middle of the game are already ' brewing' as you deploy. My question is, how do you go about deployment when your opponent has, say, 2 or 3 more drops than you, or plays a refused flank? And would your approach change if you faced flanks bogged down with unbreakable swarms, or such?

And of course, great victory! Go high elves :D

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 4:47 am 
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Thanks for these great reports and pictures of each turn. One thing I've learned from this is that I need to be more patient in getting my faster units into the right position to get the flank charge off or to bait enemy units out of position and then squash them.

Great reading, too!

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:06 pm 
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I've been following the thread and it's been of great help to me, loads of good advice and battle reports. Keep up the good work!

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:06 pm 
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As said, another fine report! The pictures really show what is going on.

I have to admit though to a sense of frustration watching you pick your opponent's army apart! Of course it's always easy watching from the outside but I kept wondering why your opponent made certain moves. His shooty flank collapsed horribly and there was no real challenge to your Silver Helms. I guess the answer is that sometimes he made mistakes but more often your maneouvres just left him with a choice of evils.

I too like his list better than the previous one. I still think he needs more chaff & variety though. Those infantry blocks got isolated and flanked again to grievous effect. I'm not sure about deploying all the war machines on the hill, your cavalry showed why this is risky. I'd also split the Wolf Riders into two, maybe using them as redirectors, they're cheap enough. Of course you targeted them first to stop them being a nuisance which is why more cheap stuff is needed I think.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:42 pm 
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Congrats again on a very nice battle and an excellent report!

It is pretty clear that you're able to fight as you will against these types of armies. Did you play against a typical hard army or castling one, e.g. dwarfs, lizzies or skaven? It would be interesting to see how the princebus fares against these

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 2:50 pm 
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Telemachus wrote:
Seredain,
My question is, how do you go about deployment when your opponent has, say, 2 or 3 more drops than you, or plays a refused flank? And would your approach change if you faced flanks bogged down with unbreakable swarms, or such?


I might be able to help with this one, actually. This past weekend, I played a game at 2500 points with this list against my roommate's Orcs and Goblins (brutal annihilation, I might add, where I didn't lose a single unit), and for our scenario we rolled the Pass. Effectively, this equates to having a refused flank, or heavy flanks, since there really isn't any flank to speak of when you're playing lengthwise instead of widthwise.

In this situation, I deployed in the "Cup o' Death" deployment (as I like to call it).

Image

Deployment order:
1. Great Eagle
2. Chariot
3. Bolt throwers
4. Archers (without archmage)
5. Archers (with archmage)
6. Spearmen
7. White Lions (by this point his trolls were down, so I knew exactly where I wanted my STR 6 flaming banner)
8. Swordmasters
9. Dragon Princes
10. Silver Helms (with Prince and BSB) (note, they were at a slight angle towards the rest of my line, so that they would run/overrun diagonally through my line if needed)

As you can see, it's basically a refused flank of my own, with units outside of it placed forward. By putting the stronger units where they were, it funnels him into the cup because he doesn't want to contact the 'scary' units. But if he takes the bait and goes after the easier archers or spearmen, the rest of the cup is poised to collapse in on their flanks to destroy them. I gave him a very tasty missile hill for him to go after, with a block of spears nearby to hold up the scariest unit, and units poised to destroy him if he went after them.

I'm actually in the process of typing up a battle report of the game.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 11:00 pm 
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Excellent topic. After finding the thread a few days ago, I have just spent the last 2 hours trawling through it. There is some real solid info in there, thanks for sharing your knowledge.

I have been a big fan of the Silverhelm bus for years (they were the first unit I brought when I got into this hobby 16 years ago.) but have been leaving them on the shelf lately. I only have had one regular opponent who plays Bretts and Beastmen and I felt I could add more killier infantry units for less cost. This has changed recently however, and we now can add Chaos, Dwarves, DE and O&G to the list of opponents.

We played a game last night and I included a Prince and BSB with 8 Helms , 4000 points of HE versus Beastmen and DE. The SH bus went really well, although I did make one error with the unit. In turn two I opted to direct all my attacks against a unit of 5 Minotaurs with a Doombull, hoping for a bigger combat res. I did several wounds, but lost most of my Helms to return attacks, most coming from the Doombull. I won combat but my opponent passed his morale test. He challenged me in hist turn and I used the talisman of loec to do four wounds, not realising he has 5 wounds to start with (so tough). I also took a wound from his attacks. Luckily for me he failed his morale and I ran the last of them down, but had lost all of my Helms in the process. If I had of hit his Doombull with both the Prince and the BSB I may have come out with more Helms alive.

But the Prince and BSB combo is one I will use for a while yet. The 1+ rerollable saves is pretty awesome against most missile fire and low strength troops, and even against high strength stuff it is amasing what you can pass on the second roll. Against Beastmen with no armour saves I may swap out the Giant Blade for the Sword of Hoeth. With Always Strikes First rule and auto wounding I will have no need for the talisman of loec.

Cheers

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 12:15 am 
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Cheers everyone!

SpellArcher wrote:
I have to admit though to a sense of frustration watching you pick your opponent's army apart! Of course it's always easy watching from the outside but I kept wondering why your opponent made certain moves. His shooty flank collapsed horribly and there was no real challenge to your Silver Helms. I guess the answer is that sometimes he made mistakes but more often your maneouvres just left him with a choice of evils.

I too like his list better than the previous one. I still think he needs more chaff & variety though. Those infantry blocks got isolated and flanked again to grievous effect. I'm not sure about deploying all the war machines on the hill, your cavalry showed why this is risky. I'd also split the Wolf Riders into two, maybe using them as redirectors, they're cheap enough. Of course you targeted them first to stop them being a nuisance which is why more cheap stuff is needed I think.

SpellArcher,

Yeah, letting my helms through unchallenged was a pretty big mistake- I was unlikely to surrender the chance to do big damage with them from a position like that. Charging the boar boyz out of the way wasn't a brilliant solution since it would still have left the orc infantry exposed regardless. As for the boars themselves, a couple of rounds of bolt thrower fire had pretty much made them white lion food. You may have a point about the chaff, too - once again I had no real trouble in surrounding and then butchering the orc infantry since there were no redirectors, harassers and so on. I think the current orc list has merit, though. I suspect some hard-learned lessons will improve its performance!

Janwin, I like the Cup 'o Death! My army's general deployment often looks something like this (though I wouldn't normally position swordmasters on the outside of a flank). Looking forward to the report.

Telemachus wrote:
My question is, how do you go about deployment when your opponent has, say, 2 or 3 more drops than you, or plays a refused flank? And would your approach change if you faced flanks bogged down with unbreakable swarms, or such?

Telemachus,

I haven't yet played against an army which has had more than 3 drops more than me, but I have found that armies with a couple more drops are usually just as easy to deploy against as other forces. The basic point is that your opponent will have to start placing valuable units by about the 5th or 6th drop. If I haven't yet figured out where his army his going by then, I've still only deployed some archers, repeaters, an eagle and possibly a chariot. At this stage, any opposing army will have to place something important and, the moment he does, you've learned something about where the rest of his units are likely to go and can respond appropriately.

In short, take a look at your opponent's army, decide which important units he's likely to deploy together, then wait for the first one to go down before you finalise how you're going to sort him out.

Against Refused Flanks

If an opponent is playing a refused flank against me (and I've seen it done with artillery-heavy Empire and Orcs), I'm not usually worried. The key to breaking refused flanks is to concentrate as much force as you can against a single point and smash it before the rest of your opponent's army can respond. Normally, this will be one of the units deployed by your opponent on either flank, but a horde placed in the centre of his army will be a nice wide gateway for you to throw all your missiles and heavy attacking units into. If you're going for the soft centre, cover this attack with little refused flanks of your own by positioning other units on either side of your main attack. You might choose this option if the flanks are covered by unbreakable troops (don't worry about swarms - win combat by enough and you'll just trample them, while High Elf bows prep them very nicely). In any case, a single-round victory, break and pursuit takes away one intrinsic advantage from your opponent: it does not allow him to take advantage of the counter-charge options afforded by a stepped refused-flank army formation. My army is good at this because of the level of force concentration it can bring to bear with the knights, chariot, fighting characters, shooting and magic.

The common weakness of defensive refused-flank armies is that they often lack the ability to respond quickly to your main attack if it strikes the right part of their army. As for the right part of the army, that's usually (all things being equal) the unit on the edge of the flank they've refused. Why? Because it tends to be the only part of the enemy army which isn't covered by an allied unit. If you're not sure of breaking an enemy unit in one round, this part of the enemy army is a good place to strike: if you have to grind against an unbreakable unit for a turn or two, your opponent still won't have any counter-charges on. As for the distance between your army and this part of the enemy, my list has the fast units to close this down quickly and my shooting already has the range. As for the infantry, they effectively cover this attack by refusing the flank opposite the one you're attacking, leaving a situation like this:
Image

In this example, the two armies effectively rotate around each other, but your High Elves are likely to get the job done much quicker on their attacking flank because, with a list like mine, you've taken fast and very hard-hitting cavalry. This means you're in the rear of the enemy army (ruining machines and opening up combo charges for your advancing infantry), before its harder flank has the chance to strike your own refused flank. Eagles and small archer units will work well to hold this end up while you go to work.

Of course, if you think you can take the enemy's attacking flank on directly, do so. Good force concentration with combat, magic and shooting can do awesome things and, if you win this battle, the game is looing good. Against refused flanks, though, you do need that one-round kill even more than usual and you're less likely to get a surround off against this unit. If you can't count on getting that insta-kill, then, use your mobility to hit the formation at its week point at the back. The minutiae of these tactics will change depending upon the enemy army but, in principle, pick a single point, throw all your ranged power at it then hit it hard with a combined charge before following up with your elites.

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Last edited by Seredain on Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:58 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 2:44 am 
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Maybe a little off-topic, but because you design your list based around Macedonian strategy, do you think you could take other ancient successful generals and craft army lists and strategies around them?

I was thinking a Mongolian fast-cav army using DPs as the lancers and then a good base of archers and spearmen, with maybe a chariot to hold down the back line, similar to the way you have your core set-up.

You could even add a solo prince with a good armor save and the seafarer bow to accompany another unit of Cav with maybe even a dragon mage (flying artillery) to go along a flank while the other side of your army baits the enemy into combined charges, or stalls them while your shooting slowly chips away. Waiting for their army to break formation for your cav to run them down in smaller groups.

I'm not sure what other ancient armies we could build around, and I'm sure others insight could improve my "off the top of my head" Mongolian idea, but it would be interesting to see other army builds.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:19 am 
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Meridian wrote:
I'm not sure what other ancient armies we could build around

Hannibals' Cannae strategy is a big favourite of wargamers and could be done with HE's I think.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:41 am 
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SpellArcher wrote:
Meridian wrote:
I'm not sure what other ancient armies we could build around

Hannibals' Cannae strategy is a big favourite of wargamers and could be done with HE's I think.
Speaking about Hannibal and his elephants, I've been trying to find a real-world equivalent of Lion Chariots and I think a small elephant is about the closest, so I've been reading up on him again this last week. They're not as durable (though again, I'd never use chariots as much as I do without Life Lore), but aren't as temperamental or easily spooked either... I've still yet to have a chariot turn and crash into my own lines. I've considered buying some elephants, making howdahs for them, and mounting them on chariot bases, but it wouldn't fit my army's alpine setting very well...

Mongolians on the other hand... I would be tempted to use lots of Ellyrion Reavers over Knights. I think a few other armies are more capable of pulling off Mongolian Horde, though I think you could manage to get something going.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:44 am 
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~Milliardo~ wrote:
I've considered buying some elephants, making howdahs for them, and mounting them on chariot bases, but it wouldn't fit my army's alpine setting very well...

IIRC Hannibal was most famous for leading elephants over the Alps!

:)

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