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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 5:27 pm 
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Good point. I guess I'd still go for Loec though, to really ensure those Knights go down. This improves Faeria's damage output greatly. Perhaps the Lord gets +1 res on average though (1W + 5 overkill, hard to say since he loses ASF re-rolls). The problem is, will the unit reliably go down this way? I doubt it, and as such it's much more important to kill off the General.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 5:55 pm 
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Number crunching (and also - Saves your BSB)

With Loec
Saerith Output - 3 wounds on knights
Faeria (no breath) - 4.6 wounds on knights
11 from white lions - 5.4 wounds on knights
Naenor - 1.5 wounds on knights
Eagle - .333 wounds on knights (he's so sad...)

As that's 10 wounds prior to Faeria hitting combat, you may run into an issue of her not being able to target anything (Depending on positioning of the lord).

If instead you have Naenor take the challenge, the Vampire lord averages... 2.7 wounds on Naenor (including red fury damage. Only 1.9 wounds prior to red fury) and doesn't really have a chance to generate any overkill. Naenor's output and eagle is dropped significantly, but you have 2 more white lion attacks on the knights, Naenor can't be KB'd, and your only real threat is that single attack heading in Saerith's direction when he's facing the re-rolled ward save.

So 12 wounds to knights, .5 to lord (we'll say 0) non to bsb to 3 wounds by hero, and 3 by lord.

Flank, rank, banner, charge - Vamp BSB surviving - 3 static bonus (-1 for bsb aura) - 2 static bonus, + 12 wounds - 6 wounds = 8 casualty win. That's enough to pop both heroes for the loss of Naenor.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 6:22 pm 
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Correct me if I'm wrong, but in this situation could you not use the lord's challenge imperative to draw him out of position from the flank by maximizing the lions in such a way that he has to move over to accept the challenge?

This would open up all black knights on the flank (since the BSB can't make way due to already being engaged) and guarantee the Dragon gets to contribute to combat too.

Good God - imagine the look on your opponent's face when he realizes that screen move costs him 1k plus points in one turn...

D

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:25 pm 
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@Baeronvonbleat - having Naenor take the challenge is an interesting option. By carefully placing Saerith in the overrun, I can force him to move to me (the rules only tell us to maximize and I will be in contact anyway), thereby eliminating the potential problem that Faeria doesn't get to attack. Also, if he dies, it'll likely be just barely: making me lose 4 combat res (3 from wounds +1 for BSB) as opposed to a likely 5 (Faeria) or 6 (Guardian). It's an unconventional move, but it appears to be the best one here - also remember that this gives me more Lions vs his Knights!

Indeed this turned out to be an interesting analysis! We're now looking at a frontage of 4 Knights (100mm) - giving me 7 wide Lions. With maximised Horde to capitalize on this, I get 19 (!) attacks on the Knights alone! Another 4 will target the Vamp BSB. Sub-combats look as follows:
- Saerith + Faeria vs Knights ~ 3 + 4.5 ~ 7.5
- 19 Lions vs Knights ~ 9.4 (note that Lions + Saerith should wipe out the Knights alone on average, leaving Faeria free to attack the Vamp BSB)
- 4 Lions vs BSB ~ 0.6

- Surviving Knights vs Lions (maybe 1 vs Saerith) ~ 0-1 casualty, Saerith if I'm extremely unlucky
- Vamp Lord vs Naenor ~ 3W
- BSB vs Lions ~ 3

Combat resolution:
Rank + Charge + Flank + Banner + 13 wounds (mild estimate) = 17 to HE
BSB + 9 (Saerith dies) = 10 to VC
Win by 7-1, both pop.

Clearly, this seems to be the optimal solution: perform the overrun in such a manner that the Lord has to move away, leaving the Lions free to wreak havoc on the Knights but (probably) sacrificing Naenor in the same process. Note that even with a very mild estimate (Vamp BSB survives, Saerith gets KB'd) he still pops.

@Brewmaster_D - how can that be possible? If a unit is engaged with another unit like this, then the champion can just swap another Lion. I don't think it's possible to do that in this situation. As long as nothing's blocking you, you simply 'swap around' within the unit. This is exactly why Naenor accepting is brilliant: by placing Saerith to cover the Vamp Lord's corner and having the Lions to the front, there is no room for Naenor and he has to move his Lord backwards to get in base-to-base contact!

I definitely agree that the look would be priceless. With this analysis, it is pretty clear that the only 'real' risk (i.e. one that isn't insignificantly small) is whether the Ghouls will die...

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:51 pm 
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The question is this:

If two models are going to engage in a challenge, who moves to who? The challenger or the challengee?

In this case both models can move to the other just as easily, and since it's your turn, you get to decide whether you challenge him or accept his (as he's obligated to issue one).

Since both options are yours, I don't see how you couldn't force him to move to your position (away from the flank), unless there are special rules concerning champions always moving to characters.

Of course we're just splitting hairs at this point - we've already worked out a way for you to win quite decisively. I'm just trying to see if there's a way to do that without risking giving him points for a BSB.

On an unrelated note - I can't be the only one that finds it funny that a guy on an eagle can't be killing blowed, but a guy on an enormous Dragon can...

D

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:06 pm 
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Brewmaster_D wrote:
The question is this:

If two models are going to engage in a challenge, who moves to who? The challenger or the challengee?

In this case both models can move to the other just as easily, and since it's your turn, you get to decide whether you challenge him or accept his (as he's obligated to issue one).

Since both options are yours, I don't see how you couldn't force him to move to your position (away from the flank), unless there are special rules concerning champions always moving to characters.

Of course we're just splitting hairs at this point - we've already worked out a way for you to win quite decisively. I'm just trying to see if there's a way to do that without risking giving him points for a BSB.

On an unrelated note - I can't be the only one that finds it funny that a guy on an eagle can't be killing blowed, but a guy on an enormous Dragon can...

D

Fraid it's not the case. That was FAQ'd, any model that would be KB'able, on a mount that isn't can still be KB'd. The Eagle is no longer protection from the threat of insta-death.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:28 pm 
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@Brewmaster_D - the accepting challenger is always the one who has to move - if he can! If this is impossible, the requester moves. As you correctly point out, this means that my Guardian can force his Lord away from Saerith (since it's my turn I have challenge priority). I honestly didn't consider the fact that he has to accept challenges! Regardless, Naenor is the superior choice here, given the reasoning above with increased Lion-attacks on his Knights (by moving him sideways he still has 2 characters in the front rank - moving him back to Naenor gives me +1 Knight frontage-wise to hit).

@Baeronvonbleat - indeed Naenor can be KB'd. He actually died in this very game, facing 4 attacks from the rear of the Black Knights.

I finally updated the battle reports overview. This thread now contains 40 (!) battle reports @ 2500 points and a number of smaller games, team-games etc.

As I really enjoyed this recent analysis, which indeed revealed that I made a mistake which probably cost me a LOT of points, I would encourage you to point out any and all similar situations in the various tournament games for further discussion ;)

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:31 pm 
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Curu Olannon wrote:
@Brewmaster_D - the accepting challenger is always the one who has to move - if he can! If this is impossible, the requester moves.
Nope. 8th removed the underlined clause. Either the acceptor moves, or no one moves and you abstract it.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:47 pm 
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Yet another common misconception clarified by dabber! From the FAQ:

GW Rulebook FAQ wrote:
Q: After accepting a challenge must the challenged model always
move into base contact with the enemy model that issued the
challenge? (p102)
A: If the challenged model is on his own then he must move
into base contact, as long as this does not require him to move
to a different facing of a unit he is engaged with. If the
challenged model is in a unit he must move as long as it does
not require leaving his unit. Where it is not possible for base
contact to be made then leave the models where they are and
simply assume that the two models are in base contact.


So - there's still a solution: have Naenor issue the challenge ;)

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 10:39 am 
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Really great thread mate, thoroughly enjoying to read.
Quick question though, after reading your 5 tourney matches was your list 2500pts against the 2400pts you have listed for all of your opponents?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 11:55 am 
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Hey Mirialith, good to know :)

According to the ETC rules, the standard size is 2400 points. Some armies have other rules though, one of those armies is High Elves, which field 2500 points armies. I hope that answered your question! If you take a look at the battle report against Wood Elves prior to Crusade, you'll see that he fielded a 2600 points army (because Wood Elves get 2600 points armies).

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 2:34 pm 
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Thanks mate, I just went and read through the ETC rules properly and saw that myself, should of read it all before posting lol.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 3:47 pm 
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Congrats on the 40 reports Curu :)

I got some questions concerning magic for you. I have looked around to see if using strictly a lvl 2 mage in a defensive fashion could be viable and I saw that you are using such mage ( or at least did at some point ).

- How does he perform at shuting down ennemy phase?
- Can he still get some spells off reliably?
- Would giving him a silver wand and ring of fury, be a viable option? Or the crystal is too instrumental?
- Do you feel any other lore with him would be effective or he only work with High magic?

I also toyed a bit with the RGoH idea but I don't fancy risking miscast among my best cavalry unit. Given the staff of solidity, he could perhaps support such a lvl 2 mage? Would at least give more channeling and ability to 6 dices a critical spell ( That's why I am looking at fury ring ). Anyways, that one is another thread in itself. :P

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 3:56 pm 
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@Mirialith - Yeah no worries, I completely understand that people who don't play ETC themselves aren't familiar with 100% of the rules. They're quite thorough and I probably wouldn't have bothered myself either ;) I do like them though, I definitely think they make for much more interesting games. While there are probably still a few powerful builds out there (under the ETC composition rules), the majority of the one-dimensionality you experience in uncomped Warhammer is gone and lots of tournaments tend to have very interesting top10 distributions. I think Crusade is a wonderful example here - the variety of armies placing very well is a testament not only to player skill, but increased balance from the comp. pack.

@Findolfin - thanks, I wasn't really aiming for it but I guess it was inevitable. I have one more game I haven't had the time to report yet, so expect 41 in the near future ;)

Indeed I am still using the single level 2 mage - Curu Olannon (curu is the Elven word for 'wizard' or 'mage' according to Tolkien's language: arguably the most 'true' Elven language and hence the nickname)!

- Shutting down enemy magic phases has so far worked a treat. Note that I haven't faced a lot of really magic-heavy armies though, so I would probably have more trouble against e.g. Lizards or High Elves. The Annulian Crystal coupled with High Magic gives you a lot of flexibility, defensively, especially under ETC rules (5 dice max. cast).

- Reliably getting spells off: I can almost never choose which spell I want off, but if my selection is reasonable, I can usually force through one out of two per turn. Not perfect, but definitely not bad either considering most spells are mid - high priority (dispel-wise) for my opponents considering the 175 point investment.

- Swapping the Crystal. If you take a look at the possible Winds of Magic rolls and their distribution, you'll realize just how flexible this item is. The main point is that there's no limit to the amount of dice you can dispel with, which is key here.

- High Magic gives you 3 spells. These 3 spells have lower casting values than virtually any other lore (arguably Light is a strong contender here). More importantly though, 2 of them will always be useful (well, almost always at least): Shield and Drain. The fact that you can get these both, any game, and also have the chance of getting game-breakers such as Flames and Vaul's makes this lore perfect for a single level 2. I doubt another lore would be as effective, to be honest.

What is the context for your army? That is, what is your list, what comp. rules do you play by and what kind of opponents do you intend to play?

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 4:08 pm 
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I'm also copying your list, Curu, though I'll be using DPs instead of the Sword Masters which will be escorting the BSB.

I have a friendly game tonight, so I'm crunch-studying your reports like a fiend.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 4:41 pm 
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The context of my army is an all cavalry list. I am stuck with an infantry core by rules unfortunetaly but I have my hopes high for our next army book. It is still in morphing stages as I try to adress it's inherent weaknesses. I'll keep to minimum since this is your thread , I just updated an army draft in my thread.

Overall, I need fighting characters to help me trough the grind when I fail to get my spears or reavers ranks to help the heavy cavalry break trough or when they are getting unexpectedly pinned. So as much I'd like an Archmage, she is too many points and so far, she did not bring much even taking a sorcery banner.

To be honest, while I fairly was succesful at shutting down ennemy magic phase, I always had huge difficulties managing an offensive magic even before trying that cav theme. So I never really relied on magic except doing 6d6 throne of vines followed by 6d6 flesh to stone on a good phase. As such, I came to conclusion I over invested in something I don't manage adequately and don't really need except for protection from ennemy phase. Hence my interest in your budget magic thing :)

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 9:13 pm 
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@Marwynn - this is something I've considered at least giving a try myself as well. Long story short, I believe this approach is worth testing before discarding it completely. 9 DP + BSB is very different from the 5 DP naked unit which I used to run.

Quite a few pages back I got the following suggestion for list changes. I advice you check it out as it's centered around this concept:

Furion wrote:
2500 Pts - High Elves Army

1 Prince on Star Dragon @ 624.0 Pts
General; Dragon Armour
Vambraces of Defence [55.0]
Sword of Might [15.0]
Enchanted Shield [10.0]
The Other Trickster's Shard [15.0]

1 Noble on Barder Steed @ 179.0 Pts
Dragon Armour; Shield; Battle Standard
Helm of Fortune [25.0]
Sword of Battle [20.0]

1 Mage @ 175.0 Pts
Magic Level 2; Lore of High Magic
Annulian Crystal [40.0]

26 First Archers w/ Standard Bearer; Musician, Banner of Eternal Flame @ 311.0 Pts
14 Archers w/ Musician @ 159.0 Pts
14 Archers w/ Musician @ 159.0 Pts

28 White Lions w/ FCG, Banner of Swiftness @ 465.0 Pts

8+1 Dragon Princes w/ Mucician, Champion @ 325.0 Pts
1 Drakemaster: Skeinsliver @ [45.0] Pts

1 Great Eagle @ 50.0 Pts
1 Great Eagle @ 50.0 Pts

Models in Army: 91
Total Army Cost: 2497.0

cheers
Furion


@Findolfin - as you're going with cavalry, you have an intricate situation. Personally, I feel that HE cavalry alone isn't strong enough and that, as such, you need at least a level 4 to go along. I couldn't decide between Shadow and Life because I always seemed to lack either offense or defense. Perhaps going with a lvl 4 High (give him Ring of Fury for flexibility!) is a good alternative? Indeed this is what Seredain's doing these days, and if someone knows HE cavalry that's certainly him.

Another interesting approach, which I know a very skilled Norwegian player has been attempting, revolves around 2 Princes (!) in a DP (!!!) bus. By including the World Dragon BSB, you're looking at a unit which does very well on its own. Perhaps you can dodge the Archmage in such a list and go for a plain level 2 like me?

I feel your pain with regards to offense - the problem with magical offense is one's ability to produce multiple high-priority dispel rolls (see Brewmaster's setup). As this usually means flexible spell selection (either a ton of spells or duplication of key spells), a single mage won't cut it unless you go BoH.

I think this discussion is better continued in your thread, so you can go back in your own blog later on to review what's been discussed etc (I frequently do it when I evaluate the play, list etc). I'll get around to giving you some proper feedback there instead ;)

So - what's up for the Vindicators now? I wrote about it briefly in another thread - this is what I have in mind for the near future:
- I'm writing up a Crusade Evaluation, in which I'll go a bit more into detail about my opponents, as well as my own play. It should be a nice end to a really exciting event!
- I still have a battle report against the new Empire book which I'll hopefully get up soon
- On Tuesday we're having a big Storm of Magic battle at Rusty's place (the lucky bast**** has a gaming room in his basement) - 3 players on each side with 2000 points (+ 500 bonus for Storm of Magic) each means there'll be a total of 15000 points Warhammer on the table! As the table's 8' x 4', it's going to get pretty crammed. Yes, there will be pictures! We're playing a classic good vs evil and we're trying to not max out the lists as the point is to have fun (seriously, the HE items can totally ruin SoM if you try as hard as you can). The armies are: HE WE DW vs OK OG DE
- I want to try out two things: 1 is swapping the Swordmasters for a cavalry hammer. I will elaborate on this issue in my Crusade Evaluation, but suffice is to say that I think it's worth testing out, at the very least. I also want to try Sea Guard, because the army is designed to work under ETC restrictions, and it just so happens that 45 Sea Guard work perfectly with regards to filling up core so that I won't have to take 10 Spears. The question then becomes - is the improved survivability and combat prowess worth sacrificing 6" for?

Lots of exciting stuff coming up ;)

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 4:09 am 
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Looking forward to all of those, especially the Crusade evaluation!

Furion's changes look pretty good, I think I'll change my Core at the least. I found having a block of 30 and 20 to be a bit inflexible. But it'll be a cold day in elf-hell before I give up my third Great Eagle! ;)

Much pondering required, thanks for sharing that list. Looking forward to you experimenting with LSG.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:51 pm 
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Seeing how often your archers lack for targets, LSG makes sense. That changes the dynamic of your archer horde however, I assume you have some thoughts on the matter?

Regards, the lucky bastard
(Finding space for a gaming room in a sodden old basement isn't that hard as long as one lives at the back of beyond with only polar bears and crack addicts for neighbors, they tend to deflate house prices)

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 4:32 pm 
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Hey Rusty,

I just figured you used your winnings from the tournament to finance it.

:P

Lmao, sorry, couldn't help myself

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 6:59 pm 
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@Marwynn - I'll write up the evaluation now!

@rusty - At least it'll be an interesting swap.

@Brewmaster_D - Winning that kind of money in Warhammer would most certainly be cool ^^ I imagine we'd all be dominated by Asians though :(

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:43 pm 
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Curu Olannon presents:


:: 2D6 Crusade - Evaluation ::

Having spent quite a few hours typing up the reports from Crusade and analyzing my own play as well as that of my opponent's with the great help from Ulthuan, it's time to sit back and ask myself "what did I learn?" as well as "how did I do?". This post will detail the opponents I faced, key match events and my own thoughts about those games. Lastly, I will make an overall conclusion and point to some future possibilites for the Dragonlord.

To juice it all up for you guys I decided to put in some pictures from the tournament as well :) It should help give you a feel of what it was like and I hope you enjoy them.

:: Game 1 - Chaos Dwarfs ::

This game was a hard matchup for me based on player skill and the fact that I'm not familiar with Chaos Dwarfs. I'm very glad that I read through the Throne of Tamurkan as well as Ptolemy's battle report against Chaos Dwarfs prior to this tournament, otherwise this likely would've been an 0-20 loss. The army was a very cool one and indeed ended up winning best painted (by 1 vote!) in the tournament - well deserved in my opinion!

So - let's jump to it. The worst mistake in this game was forgetting the fact that the K'daii Destroyer has flaming attacks. Had I remembered this, I likely would've taken home a big victory because my priorites would be way different to what they were. The second mistake was thinking that my Eagle - whose duty it was to angle away said Destroyer - needed to stay clear of Dangerous Terrain! These 2 cost me a lot of points, and indeed it was pure luck (an LD7 rally test...) which saved me a draw in the end.

Image
The Noble Eagle is unfortunately very afraid of the scattered rocks

My opponent went on to win his next 2 games 20-0 I think, which landed him at Table 1 for Game 4 where he met Ogres. Basically the Ironblaster went to town here and the Ogre player was a bit lucky with some crucial panic tests. It's a tough matchup for the Chaos Dwarfs I think, and indeed the result was 18-2 to the Ogres.

My opponent ended up placing 5th.

:: Game 2 - Vampire Counts ::

A fairly easy matchup for me. While a Vampire Lord is nothing to joke around with, one on foot is hardly ever a match for a Dragonlord properly tooled up (S7 Thunderstomp is just brutal). The rest of the list posed few problems, a mediocre-sized unit of Grave Guard, some characters, lots of chaff and a few Zombies. The only thing which had me worried was the Terrorgheist - a single roll of 2D6 is extremely high-variance which means that it can easily turn the game around on a lucky day.

I got to a fairly dominant position early on and managed to dictate the flow of the game and keep the Terrorgheist away from my most vital elements. Getting Vaul's Unmaking sealed the deal for the poor Vampire Lord and I was able to annihilate him fairly easily.

Image
Lots of chaff is cleared and my units are in perfect positions for a game-breaking assault

Despite all these factors working in my favour, I didn't manage to win really big and had to settle for 16-4. While not bad by any means, I need to be able to turn advantageous matchups into 20-0 to contend for first place.

My opponent ended up placing 23rd.

:: Game 3 - Dwarfs ::

There is no secret that this is one of the worst possible matchups for me. However, my opponent had taken a big risk: his only cannon had a flaming rune. Intent on showing him just how critical this can be, I was eager to get started: until I lost the roll for first turn. This is especially bad since he had the Anvil of Doom. I dare say that if I'd have gotten T1 this would most likely have been a big victory with ease: basically I'd have 2 flyers in charge range of most of his army and the Lions + Swords wouldn't be far behind.

As it went, I made 2 big mistakes: the first was angling the Dragon so that his Siren Song character could draw me out (newbie mistake really), the second was overrunning with the Lions when he had so cleverly placed his Thunderers to force me to overrun off the table. I should've reformed here, instead I lost lots of valuable time.

Image
Despite the initial barrage, the Dragonlord's Vindicators are still largely unscathed

In the end, I had lots of luck with Naenor which likely saved me tons of points. I went away with a 15-5 victory which, to be fair, was way more than I should've had, given my mistakes.

My opponent ended up placing 9th.

:: Game 4 - Vampire Counts ::

Facing Vampire Counts again I knew I'd be out-deployed due to ridiculous amounts of chaff. This time I was up against a cavalry bus with 2 flyers as well, so my mobility was suddenly finding it had quite a challenger! This meant that I had to deploy in a fairly standard manner, which allowed him to capitalize on the spread-out elites. This taught me a valuable lesson for Game 5 - just how much the Banner of Swiftness really means!

The first few turns were extremely tactical and neither side managed to exploit anything in a game-breaking manner. I was getting somewhat frustrated but I knew I had an opening which I thought my opponent didn't see. Luckily, I was right and because of this I was able to come out on top, however due to a couple of terrible moves and a coin-toss going against me (Naenor being KB'd by 4 hits) it was a small one - 12-8.

Image
The thoroughly discussed situation at the beginning of my Turn 4

Brewmaster_D pointed out a huge opening which my opponent gave me in his T3. Looking at the picture above, I reformed the Lions and escaped through the building. Careful analysis shows that, with a pretty big chance of success, I could engage and destroy his entire cavalry bus and Ghouls here in one fell swoop as follows: Archers + Dragon + BSB into Ghouls, Lions into cavalry. On average, even if the Archers don't make the charge, the Characters will beat the Ghouls so badly that the rest will crumble. This allows an overrun into the Knights, where the BSB challenges his Vampire Lord (who had to accept). The combined power of the Lions + Dragon hitting his Knights will see him crumble easily, barring only a set of truly horrible rolls.

My opponent ended up placing 10th.

:: Game 5 - Vampire Counts ::

Getting Vampire Counts yet again I managed to predict, based on last game's deployment, that my Lions were needed on the far flank. Indeed their M6 helped me tremendously this game, my Swordmasters likely wouldn't have been anywhere close to where they would've been needed later on.

The starting turns saw me win the chaff wars with a bit of luck and an IF cast of Flames of the Phoenix gave my Lions a free path to support the rest. A couple of aggressive units on his side was countered nicely and I decided to take my chances with an extremely juicy charge mid-game, which led to his entire centre being left wide-open to assault.

Image
The Vindicators make ready to make the most deadly combo-charge in their history

When my opponent failed to sacrifice anything to stall the Lions, I was able to engage his bunker with my 3 most powerful units at once. Even before crumble results, he was left with his Lord alone. After this, I calculated that no more combat would be needed and played it safe. Finally a clean 20-0.

My opponent ended up placing 18th.

:: Conclusion ::

So - what did I learn? Well, first of all getting those really big victories is harder than I'd thought. I could blame the matchups, I could blame the dice, but in all of my games that didn't go 20-0 I believe there are major mistakes which should be easy to fix.

I also learned that I have no problem with time limits - I play very fast. Perhaps a bit too fast? It's a risky trade-off though, taking too much time will quickly lead to losing a turn which this army really cannot afford.

How did I do? At first, I was pretty happy with my overall performance. Placing 4th in a tournament with such a high standard is something I'm proud of. However, going through these games in detail afterwards it's clear that there is so much more room for improvement! More than anything, playing consistently well and not making big mistakes are crucial parts to being a strong player and I truly admire those who manage to accomplish this, game after game.

Naturally, I have been pondering some list changes as well. As always, the game changes character when you meet skilled opponents and for the first time I felt that my Swordmasters were somewhat ineffective - in almost all the games! Going back to the last major list discussion round, I've been re-reading Furion's suggestion of running a Dragon Prince BSB bus. This greatly alters the way the list plays, but I can easily see the value in this approach now and intend to give it a try. Also, LSG sound promising (!) because 45 with the needed command upgrades come to 625 sharp, which means that I won't have to bring Spears ;)

I hope you all enjoyed the string of reports, resulting analysis and this evaluation. I'm eager to hear your thoughts and evaluations as well, so please share them :)

Regards,
~Olannon

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 9:40 pm 
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If there's one overarching theme that I'd comment on throughout most of the battle reports I've read of yours it's that you're a very calculating player, which is a very good thing in terms of getting wins.

However, at this level of competition I think it's tough to end up with the situations where you can score the 20-0 victories without taking some risks. These opponents, by and large, are just too good to open up opportunities where you can crush their army with 80% or higher certainty.

So while your performance was phenomenal, I think the key to really scoring those big wins is making a couple moves where it's not so black and white. This does two things - first, often the gains from such a move are exponentially larger than the safe move for moderately more risk, and second and probably most importantly it throws your opponent off their game and effects their playing.

Like a fencer coming in with a wide blow, then when their opponent goes wide to defend, they strike at the heart. Similarly for you, a bit more... let's call it "wackiness"... might actually work in your favour and open up some shots for the big victories.

Having said that, the key here is identifying when a move is wacky good or wacky bad.

D

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:20 am 
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This makes a lot of sense: indeed I'm not a fan of risks and I like to play as safely as possible.

I guess it's kind of a classic tale of advice: if you're cautious, be more risky. If you're reckless, be more calculating. Since there will probably be a lot of friendlies in the coming weeks I can try and adapt my playstyle accordingly to really test the boundaries of my units and experience how successful it can be to take a risk now and then. More importantly, perhaps I can learn how to cope when the risky moves fail, so that I'm more comfortable when it comes to attempting them in the first place.

I also agree that against the good players, it's very hard to play 'safe' and win big. One simply has to identify where you can gain the most with risking the least, and go for it! I think this is one of the areas I can improve the most in. That, and considering angles and arcs more carefully (ref. Saerith vs Dwarfs and the Lions' pursuit against the Thunderers).

Next up is the Empire battle report! I haven't even started with BC yet, so I don't know when I'll have it up (hopefully tomorrow - but no promises!).

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 1:15 pm 
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In my experience the seaguard is a poor unit choice. I used them at the Crusade tournament and I was really disappointed by their performance. I missed the 6" extra range that archers have, and I found it difficult to know when to change from ten-wide formation to five-wide formation. It also didn`t help that they failed almost all breaktests (even when steadfast). :P


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 3:35 pm 
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@Curu - I've recently been trying to put together a Star Dragon list of sorts and have been trying to incorporate LSG as core. At 2500pts you can get around 45 w/command and a banner while satisfying list requirements. As you were thinking of doing this too I wondered what thoughts you had about how to include them - one unit or two and then the split/actual equipment?

To me, two units would seem a logical choice as they are needed to fulfill a (fire) support role behind the WLs and mounted characters. This way there is the option to shoot two different targets and greater flexibility in the list. The issue is the max. 45 ranged shots that we are both trying to fit into (you for ETC, me for a local Tourney).

So, I have been considering a unit of 25 and a unit of 20 both with command & giving the 25 strong unit the flaming banner. This comes to 645pts w/shields or 625pts on the nose if only the larger unit has shields. This way, there are still two good shooting units which max. out the shooting allowance (deployed 10 or so wide) while also retaining some decent combat ability (when reformed to be 5 wide).

I haven't had chance to test this yet but do you have any thoughts or intentions about how you plan to implement the LSG core? Are the shields a worthwhile addition or are they expendable - if I have the points, they're in but if not can they survive without them?


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 3:42 pm 
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Great summaries there, Curu.

You are quite methodical, and it shows in your analyses and reports. Looking forward to reading more (from more experienced players than I).

I can't comment on the DP BSB bus yet as my first venture with them saw them stomped by their own steeds. But it SHOULD have paid off though I'm wondering if it'd be better with a Silver Helms bus and a Lion Chariot for overall more support abilities. Plus, the LC can be deadly on its own.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 8:55 pm 
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@Chayal - I can see how these things can be an issue. However, I can't right now remember when 30" has been crucial as opposed to 24". Like SpellArcher pointed out in another thread, I frequently need to be in range of Flames/Fury/Curse/Vaul's anyway and the 30 Archers are usually the only good place to have my mage due to their central position. Also, I think I've gotten a pretty good grip on when to go for 5-wide and when to go 15-wide - a few mistakes have taught me how to utilize them. With the exception of the CD game, I think I used them well to this end during Crusade. Anyways, I appreciate the input and I'm well aware that these can very well be the drawbacks which make me settle on Archers, after all. We'll see!

@John Rainbow - Initially I'm looking to simply replace Archers: 30 + 15 LSG where the larger has full command + flamebanner and the smaller has musician will likely be my first attempt. I can definitely see a number of configurations working well though, but having those ranks when needed can often be crucial so I'm a little hesitant to drop them below 30. I could see ~25 working, we'll see! I really doubt that one big unit can be worth it though, it gives you way too little flexibility. The ETC limit is indeed a problem here and it's the only reason I'm considering LSG in this list at all.

If your initial thoughts are 25+20 I'd say go for it! Since it's such a rare unit to use in a competitive setting (especially with successful results: I have yet to see a tournament winner use Sea Guard for example), I believe there's a lot of ground to cover here if we are to discover whether they're viable at all :)

@Marwynn - Thanks! As far being methodical goes, I guess it's partially in my nature and partially due to my profession (I'm an engineer). I find that it works well though, especially when it comes to post-game analysis.

As for the DP + BSB bus it'll be interesting to see how it plays out! I'm very much looking forward to trying it out myself ;)

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 6:57 am 
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If you want to improve your game further, aim to play vs your worst possible matchups. I've yet to see you play lizardmen and ogres, except one game which arguably wasn't balanced.

As mentioned previously, taking risks is part of winning big. However, it's way more important to play steady and with no errors on your own, while preparing to exploit any errors your opponent makes.

Being lucky also works;)

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 9:49 am 
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Honestly, I don't see how playing my worst matchups will improve my game further when the problem seems to be getting the most points when I'm supposed to. With that being said, I'd be happy to meet Lizardmen but I simply haven't had an opportunity to do so. As far as Ogres go, much the same applies but it's true that I don't see much value in playing them. Perhaps it's of some use under the ETC restrictions, where their Ironblaster is a 0-1 choice. I'll probably get around to it at some point ;)

I should note that I haven't faced Bretonnia or High Elves either, none of which I consider particularly bad matchups (depending a little on how the armies are built, of course).

As for playing steady, I agree that this is perhaps the most important. However one will always make mistakes, in every single game. There is no denying this, and although you can reduce them and mitigate this, I think that for me it's more important to reckognize and go for favourable risks, since this is something I'm usually reluctant to do.

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