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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:32 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2014 1:55 am
Posts: 88
Hello everyone

This is my first battle report, I didn't take as many notes as I probably should have, but here it goes. I'm also not sure how to post pictures, so descriptions are all.

Lists:

High Elves:
30x Spearmen FC
25x Spearmen FC
5x Ellyrion Reavers w/ Bows
12x Archers w/ Standard
20x Swordmasters of Hoeth FC
10x Dragon Princes of Caledor FC
Flamespyre Phoenix
Frostheart Phoenix
Eltharion the Grim w/ Lore of Metal (Plague of Rust, Final Transmutation)
Lothern Sea Helm BSB w/ Sword of Might, Talisman of Endurance
Archmage Level 4 w/ High Magic, Book of Hoeth, Talisman of Preservation (Soul Quench, Apotheosis, Arcane Unforging, Fiery Convocation)
Dragon Mage of Caledor Level 1 w/ Dragon Armor, Enchanted Shield

Tomb Kings:
48x Skeleton Archers FC
20 or so Skeleton Archers FC
3x Chariot FC
3x Chariot FC
Tomb Scorpion
Tomb Scorpion
3x Carrion
20x Tomb Guard FC w/ Banner of Terror
Khemrian Warsphinx w/ Breath weapon
Khemrian Warsphinx w/ Breath weapon
Necrosphinx
Screaming Skull Catapult
Screaming Skull Catapult
Khalida
Liche Priest Level 2 w/ Dispel Scroll (Incantation of Smiting and something else)
Liche Priest Level 2 (Incantation of -1 Strength and something else)
BSB of some sort w/ Banner of The Undying Legion

Initial Thoughts:
Not at all what I expected, no caskets, relatively low infantry count, and far more monsters than I thought. Also I am heavily outnumbered in deployment drops, which will hurt. The high toughness creatures will cause me a lot of issues, and I need to cross the board fast to not get shot to death. I have far more magic, though, so hopefully that helps.

Deployment:
There's a giant pyramid on my side of the board cutting off around a third of the right flank. Archers, smaller spearmen block, and Flamespyre go on the right flank. Center is held by other spearmen block, dragon, and swordmasters with all characters inside. The left flank had the Frostheart and the Dragon Princes, hoping to sweep their left and drive into the center. Right flank was sort of thrown away once the Tomb Kings began deploying, Flamespyre intending to fly fast and bypass some of the Tomb King models to support center.
Tomb Kings refuse their right against my Dragon Princes and Frosty dropping all three sphinxes there. All three drops happened after I was finished, unfortunately, so I couldn't avoid them. Center has the Tomb Guard flanking the giant Khalida archer block which also has the BSB and one priest. Heirophant joins the smaller archer block on Khalida's left. Tomb King left is heavily weighted with both chariot units, Carrion, and both scorpions going down.

Turn 1 High Elves:
No charges, general advance. Center infantry goes as fast as they can forward to close range, both flanks move forward a bit staying out of average charge range of enemies. I mistakenly thought the Necrosphinx was S6, so my Phoenix and Dragon Princes were more afraid of it than they should have been. For the magic phase I got 12 dice to 6, for a good start. Flaming Sword is cast on the Dragon Princes in case the Necorsphinx goes in, Soul Quench and Convocation on the Khalida block are dispelled, drawing the scroll on Convocation. Unforging hits the BSB, though, destroying the Banner of Undying Legions. Shooting does nothing.

Turn 1 Tomb Kings:
No charges and a slight reshuffling of movement, scorpions and some chariots advance, Necrosphinx backs up. Magic phase is only 4 dice, Smiting on Khalida is dispelled. The two catapults both target the swordmasters, one misfires and the other scatters off target. Archers kill off three Swordmasters and two Spearmen from the center block.

Turn 2 High Elves:
The Flamespyre attempts to charge the forward chariots and fails forward three inches. No other charges are declared, Dragon Princes advance on the Necrosphinx, Frosty redeploys a bit towards the center. Swordmasters and Spearmen blocks race forwards in the center with the Reavers covering the Swordmasters to the front against one of the Warsphinxes to redirect away. Dragon moves up next to Spearmen facing Khalida. Spearmen on the right hold position at an 8" charge from closest scorpion, 9" from the other. Magic is again a large phase, 10 dice rolled plus one channel. Spells kill three Tomb Guard with Transmutation (horrible dice roll), and soul quench kills three archers from Khalida. Archers manage to kill one enemy archer.

Turn 2 Tomb Kings:
Both scorpions charge the spearmen block and both manage to make it in. No other charges, both Warsphinxes advance towards the Swordmasters to bring them into breath weapon range (I forgot they had it, quite unfortunate). The Necrosphinx moves forward to engage the Dragon Princes. Khalida wheels to bring the whole unit into arc of fire against the Swordmasters. Chariots move forward a bit and Carrion moves in front of one Chariot unit to cover it from the Flamespyre. Magic sees Smiting go off on Khalida resurrecting all three of the dead archers. The miscast kills 5 archers in the other unit, though. Shooting is devastating. Both flaming breaths are used, killing 4 Swordmasters and 4 Reavers. Khalida then kills another 10 Swordmasters, while the other Archer unit kills 2 more Spearmen. Both Catapults mercifully miss. The Scorpions manage to kill 7 spearmen, while one scorpion takes 2 wounds in return.

Turn 3 High Elves:
Almost the whole army charges. Dragon Princes and Frosty charge the Necrosphinx, Dragon and Spearmen charge Khalida, Swordmaster remnants charge the Tomb Guard, and Flamespyre charges the forward chariots. Magic is low usefulness. Plague of Rust goes onto Khalida's unit, Flaming Sword onto the Dragon Princes, and Apotheosis onto the Spearmen just to give them fear and buff the Swordmasters' ward save. Shooting is ineffectual again. The Flamespyre takes one wound and kills one Chariot (I greatly underestimated the offensive power of the Flamepysre). The Spearmen and the Dragon kill 18 of Khalida's archers, but 8 spearmen die, mostly to Khalida. The Dragon Princes and the Frosty put 3 wounds onto the Necrosphinx for no damage in return. The Swordmasters + Characters kill off 15 tomb guard at the cost of 1 Swordmaster, 1 wound on the BSB, and 1 wound on Eltharion. The scorpions kill 7 more spearmen, while the spearmen put 2 wounds on the other scorpion...

Turn 3 Tomb Kings:
Carrion charge the Flamespyre's flank, Chariots advance a bit, and both Warsphinxes move into position to rear charge the Dragon and Swordmasters. Magic is 7-5, Smiting is miscast on Khalida again. The resulting miscast kills 7 more archers and wounds the Heirophant. Shooting sees the catapults and archers kill 9 of the elven archers. The scorpions kill 5 more spearmen for no return damage. The Flamespyre Phoenix misses his attacks, takes 3 wounds, and breaks from combat. He isn't caught, though. The Spearmen and Dragon kill a further 20 archers of Khalida's block at the cost of 9 spears. The Swordmasters wipe out the Tomb Guard and reform to face the Warsphinx behind them.

Turn 4 High Elves:
The lone Reaver charges the Necrosphinx in the flank to generate some CR or at least draw attacks, the Swordmasters charge the Warsphinx (not a good idea), and the Flamespyre rallies. Flaming Sword again goes up on the Dragon Princes, and Apotheosis heals the BSB. Shooting wounds one of the Carrion two times. One of the Scorpions is finally killed, while the other eats 3 more spears. The Dragon and friends kill 9 archers at the cost of 3 spearmen (the breath weapon was unleashed for a massive 2 hits and 1 kill). The Swordmasters fail to damage the Warsphinx while the remaining Swordmasters die and the mage takes 2 wounds (3+ ward saves failing too many times). The Necrosphinx is finally killed. The Reaver runs off to conserve points while the Frosty and Dragon Princes reform to face the rear of the Warsphinxes.

Turn 4 Tomb Kings:
Carrion charge the archers, both Chariot units charge the Flamespyre, Warsphinx charges the rear of the Dragon. Magic sees smite go off on the Khalida unit and the -1 S and -1 T spell on the spearmen is dispelled. 4 archers stand back up. Shooting with the catapults misses the Dragon Princes. One carrion falls to the archers, but they are wiped out. The unkillable scorpion kills another 2 spearmen, and the Flamespyre dies to impact hits. The Dragon is unwounded, but 5 spearmen fall. They manage to kill 4 of the archers and the BSB, though. Eltharion valiantly wounds the Warsphinx twice, but promptly fails his ward saves and is stomped to death. The BSB also takes a wound, failing his ward save as well. Dragon reforms to face the Warsphinx.

Turn 5 High Elves:
The Frosty charges the Warsphinx facing the Dragon in the rear and the Dragon Princes charge the other Warsphinx in the rear. Flaming Sword goes up on the Dragon Princes and Apotheosis on the mage is dispelled. The last spearmen facing the scorpion gets eaten, and the last spearman facing Khalida gets cut down, but not before killing the last of Khalida's archer friends. The Phoenix and Dragon wound the Warsphinx they are fighting 4 times, but the Dragon Mage himself is cut down by a killing blow from the riders. The Dragon Princes wound the other Sphinx 2 more times, but the final wound cannot be rolled. Therefore the mage and BSB are both stomped to death before the Warsphinx crumbles.

Turn 5 Tomb Kings:
Khalida charges the Dragon in the rear, other units shuffle. The catapults kill one Dragon Prince and they fail their morale, breaking. The Phoenix kills the other Warsphinx, Khalida wounds the Dragon twice, but it holds in combat.


At this point the game ended. We had miscounted the turn number and thought that it was turn 6, only reading through my notes did I see that we only played 5 turns. The final turn might have seen the Dragon Princes rally, boosting High Elf end game points, but the Dragon would probably have been killed by Chariots charging and no Tomb King units would have been casualties, so the game end score would have been very similar.

Tomb King Victory: 2440 to 1492

Post Game Thoughts:
I needed more high strength, the Sphinxes were brutal. My rolls could not hurt them reliably at all. The scorpions survived through me rolling very poorly and a few lucky saves. The Flamespyre was definitely misused, my deployment hurt being up against nothing I could stomp. My flank was also too heavily weighted, the Frosty or Dragon Princes should have been in the center, but part of that was due to not having enough drops allowing the enemy to refuse the flank with all three Sphinxes. The Swordmasters were good at what they did, but got slaughtered by archer fire. Some of that was expected, but I was hurt by good enemy rolling on one turn and not enough High Magic casting boosting their ward save. My magic choices were interesting. I had too much direct damage meaning my casters couldn't do much once combat was joined, but had great potential before combat. My opponent managed to keep Convocation off of Khalida, which would have been game changing. Lore of Metal also wasn't the best choice against Tomb Kings considering my opponent didn't have an armor save higher than 5+. I was hoping for some of the augments, Glittering Scales would have been amazing on the Swordmasters or Spearmen. I was pleasantly surprised by the Dragon Mage, Flaming Sword worked very well and he survived much longer than I thought, but that was partially down to sticking him in against S3 troops.
Overall I think the battle was lost by inferior deployment and my list not having a real answer to three Sphinxes, even though I did eventually kill them all.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2018 9:26 am 
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Location: The city of Spires
3 Sphinxes is definitely tough to handle. Thanks for the report. It was a fun read. And, since TK are an army I face regularly it was very recognizable. :)

CaledorRises wrote:
I'm also not sure how to post pictures, so descriptions are all.

There are 2 steps to posting pictures in a post. First you have to upload them somewhere online. Imgur or Photobucket work fine. Though You could also use google drive or Microsoft one drive (which is what I do). You probably want to resize images as well to around 600-800 pixels wide (modern photo's tend to be quite large). A lot of photo upload sites have options for this, though there are also some desktop options if you want to know.

Once you have uploaded the image to somewhere, get the image URL. Post this in the [img] tags, and that will show the image in the post. For instance, the following posted normally gives an image:
Code:
[img]https://5wrliw.am.files.1drv.com/y4mP... snip ...6ovSB6NAzeKfmA?width=256&height=144&cropmode=none[/img]

=>
Image

On your list, I think you have too few redirectors (either units of reavers or eagles). They help you control the flow of the battle more and allow you to concentrate your army where you want. I usually aim for about 1 redirector per 1000 points, depending on the list a bit. This would also give you a couple of "useless" deployment drops, which let you spie what your opponent is up to a bit better.

I also think the archer unit is too small to do much other then an occasional wound here and there. Which doesn't achieve anything vs an army that can regenerate those wounds. They also don't need a standard, though they could use a musician for the swift reforms.

I'm not a fan of the seahelm bsb. High elf fighting characters on foot are just not very good. The same character on a horse would have had a 3 point higher armour save and couldn't have been stomped. It would have been faster and you could have even considered swapping the sword of might + talisman for the ogre blade. And, turning the seahelm into a regular noble would have actually made him cheaper as well.

It looks like a very fun list though, so there is that.

Deployment: I think when you're up against a numerically larger army you need a strong idea about what you want your battle line to look like and ignore what your opponent is doing a bit perhaps. You will get outdeployed when your opponent has 4 more drops. So you might as well just go for the strongest option you have. I think I would have gone for a complete refused flank I think. Ignore the right where the pyramid was and put everything left of the centre. I probably would have put the archers in the centre of the field. They're disposable and from there they are most likely to hit something. Then the large spearman unit, SM, Spearmen, dragon princes. The reavers can go anywhere, since with the vanguard move they can redeploy to whereever you need them and with an 18'' fast cavalry move you can zip from one end of the battlefield to the other in no time. The phoenixes can either go on the end of your line or behind it. With 20'' flying, they again can go pretty much anywhere faster then your other units can.

I think the results of the archers in turn 1-2 shows what I meant with the unit being too small. S3 shooting in general just doesn't do much. So you need a lot of volume with it if you want it to matter.

I think you used the flamespire wrong. In the first few turns it should have been flying over units to make the most of the wake of fire rule. It's not great, but ranked up units of T3 models with little armour are the ideal target. You can get 5-10 wounds on a single pass if you get some decent rolls. And the flamespire is hard to catch for the TK army. And afterwards, you don't want to get it into combat by itself. 3 S5 attacks are not very scary. It should support other units (preferably with flank / rear charges). It can tank quite a bit of damage you can (potentially) heal it back up again, it could even simply be reborn after it dies. And if you're fighting infantry, thunderstomp is great. But I've had it in combat with a unit of clanrats once, and it managed to hit with none of its regular attacks, only winning combat because of a lucky high thunderstomp roll.

The same up to a certain extent for the frostheart. It's more powerful. And definitely more tanky. But you don't want it in combat by itself unless there is no other option.

I think I also would have focussed the shooting and more magic on the sphixes. The shooting didn't achieve much. It could as well have been used to try and get a lucky 6 to wound. Also, it could have been interesting in combination with flaming sword (for a +1 to wound). Though perhaps a bigger archer unit would have been better in that case.

Rod

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:49 am 
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Thanks for the feedback!

My list is currently fairly limited in those suggested departments. I don't own any more redirectors yet, I intend to get some eagles and maybe another unit of reavers, of course the reavers will be more difficult since they are oop. The archers were also just to fill the core tax. I'd like to put more spears in those units or field a larger archer unit but I don't have my archers painted yet and the spears are oop too of course. My one thought with the small archer unit was to try and shoot away some chaff, I thought the small number might be able to handle that.

I definitely played the Flamespyre wrong, I greatly overestimated the combat potential. My hope was to break through the light chariots which would get me into position to fly over the archer blocks, but that didn't work because it hits much softer than I thought it would.

I have the Lothern Sea Helm as my BSB partially because I like the model, and then also partially for the reform ability, though to be fair I've never used the ability. A noble certainly has more versatility. I do like High Elf characters on foot, though. It seems to me that when you start putting several of them on mounts, like a BSB, you have to start designing your entire list around them to be mobile, and I really like High Elf infantry. Of course I am biased because I primarily own High Elf infantry, but still.

I've never really considered deploying without regard to the enemy when heavily outnumbered. That's certainly an interesting idea that I'll have to try out.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 17, 2018 7:51 am 
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Yeah, with some core HE stuff going oop it's sometimes hard to get what you need for an army list. And of course my comments were completely ignoring the models you have available ;) Which is always a deciding factor of course. The reavers from the island of blood set can be found for decent prices on ebay (last time I checked at least). There is quite a lot of them floating around I think. As for spearmen, they're probably slightly harder to find, since people didn't really like the models too much so they only bought the minimum they would need. You could add a few unit fillers to increase their number without needing more models.

I know how you feel about the sea helm. It is a great model. Though you could of course use him as a regular noble who just happens to stand on a rock ;)

As for deployment I think the most important thing is that you need to have a plan going in. And the more drops you have compared to your opponent, the more you can force him to react to what you're doing while you keep your plan hidden. Though of course, as you gain more experience, you start having a better idea of what your opponent will do after the first real units are placed. Real in this sense that it's units that matter. A HE eagle or reaver unit don't matter much. They can go whereever since they are fast enough to reposition quickly. You just don't want them to block what you're planning. But in your list, after the two blocks of spears have gone down you can have a guess what the plan is. Both with where they are placed but also with the space they leave for other units.

Because of this, I will often drop a most central unit first after my disposable units or units that have a very obvious place (think shooting units on a hill). For instance I often run a unit of phoenix guards. Because of its durability and (relatively) slow speed it tends to go in the centre of the battlefield. But, placing it there still gives me 3 choices. I can either keep the PG unit in the centre of my army and place everything left and right around it. Or I can play a refused flank and use the PG unit as the anchor at the edge of my flank and during the battle pivot the rest of the army around the PG unit. So placing the PG unit in the centre doesn't give much away.

On the other hand, if I plan to do a refused flank, with a large cavalry unit (like 10 dragon princes) at the outer edge of the flank then placing that unit down will immediately show what I'm up to. It's too expensive a unit to sacrifice just to confuse my opponent (small archer units are great for this. Cheap enough to "throw away", but still annoying enough to do something on their own on a far flank). And it plays an important part in the battleplan.

Rod

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Eirik wrote:
Please try to remember that, no matter how 'official' the source seems, rumours are basically just a dictionary combined with a random number generator

For Nagarythe: Come to the dark side.
PS: Bring cookies!

Check out my plog
Painting progress, done/in progress/in box: 167/33/91


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