Two matches, two results, two close run things
Inside this report
- Army lists (High Elves & Ogres)
- Turn by turn account
- Lots of pictures (will expand when clicked on)
Organised a single match against Stephen last night at the Club but we ended up playing two as the first finished in just under 2 hours and we had some time left over. Wasn't quite sure what he was going to bring as he has Ogres, Wood Elves and Empire. I was really hoping he wouldn't bring Ogres as I have yet to beat them with my Dwarfs as he just steam rollers over me each time. Empire I wouldn't mind so much as I have more experience playing against them than any other army, Wood Elves would be tricky as they are very shooty and very good at restricting your movement.
Either way I was going to play High Elves so I could play my newly painted Dragon!!!! To be fair Stephen would expect me to bring my Dwarfs so this might have given me a slight advantage as well :)
The Army lists
I had drawn up a number of 1500 pt lists for this match both with and without the Dragon, each emphasising a particular strength either magic, heavy infantry or cavalry. However, seeing Stephens Ogres I had to make some drastic changes to my list. Final lists for both armies were:
Dragon Mage Level 2
w. Silver Wand & Power Stone
w. FC & Lion Banner
Dragon Princes x5
w. FC & Banner of Ellyrion
Dragon Princes x5
Ogres (from memory exact list up later)
Battle Standard Bearer
Trappers x10 (2 units)
Deployment & Strategy
Terrain set up had a small village on the left hand side of the board (my left), two small forests on the right edge one near either deployment zone and a hill on my side near the right. I got Stephen to set up first after I choose table sides to see where he would put everything especially the Hunter and the Leadbelchers. He basically deployed in line with the Leadbelchers and Hunter each anchoring one flank. The Trappers went into the Village on the left and the forest closest to my deployment area on the right. Stephen as always is a very fair player and gave me a couple of tips regarding set up, notably relating to thoughts on what I shouldn't do which was nice of him. Anyway I wanted to give my Dragon Princes the chance to flank charge either end of his line with the infantry holding up the centre. With my mage rolling for Fireball, Fiery Blast and Conflaguration of Doom I had the best possible spells I could get for the Lore of Fire (in my opinion) so he was my ace in the hole - particularly as Stephen had no magic in this game; surprising for him as he uses it well.
Set up was as shown in map above, single unit of Dragon Princes on the left was the one without the Command Group and they were held back the entire game until the Ogre battleline had passed them and presented their flank. The DP on the right facing the forest had the Banner of Ellyrion (love that banner) meaning they could ignore the terrain and flank the Ogres pretty quickly. The Gorger was a worry but I gave myself 2 turns before it arrived and assumed it would head for the Bolt Thrower (which it did).
The Dragon flys into the village causing the Trappers to flee, and the Dragon Princes on the right advance toward (but cannot charge) the forest against the other trapper unit. The remaining units all move up slowly but begin angling toward the right flank with the aim of setting up in a line between the hill and the closest forest. The left flank DP move forward to get within charge range of where I anticipate the Ogres to be about Turn 2-3. The Dragon Mage casts Fireball and Fiery Blast on the Leadbelchers killing one and wounding one, and then Conflaguration of Doom on the Ironguts. The BSB deflects the spell onto the Gnoblars though where it kills only 2, yes 2, Gnoblars before disappearing (Stephen rolled 6 I rolled 4). In hindsight I should have finished off the Leadbelchers as they were the biggest threat to the Dragon. The Bolt-Thrower took down one more of them though and wounded the other.
Stephen replied by moving the remaining Leadbelcher toward the Dragon and killing the Mage on it. The rest of his line moved forward. So Turn 1 ends with my General dead and the Dragon riderless but still fighting - points to Stephen, and a slap on the wrist for me for moving my Mage to far forward again. Have to remember that a Dragon Mage is not a truly offensive melee weapon.
The DP on the right charge the Trappers but fail to kill them all, which in the end was a good thing as it gave the rest of the Ogres time to move into a flank position. The Ogres continue to move forward minus the remaining Leadbelcher who is killed by the Dragons charge and the Village based trappers who continued to flee.
Stephens Ogres are now angling straight at the hill on my right and I have moved the 1st Spears out in front of my units to act as bait and hold them up. Unfortunately I don't position it properly and it is flanked charged by the Gnoblars and Bull Charged (in the front) by the Iron Guts at the end of Turn 2. Somehow it survives a round of combat only to lose in Turn 3 and be overrun, with the Ironguts rampaging into the flank of the Swordmasters who had gotten stuck out of position.
The good news for me in these turns though were the Dragon Princes trampling over the Trappers and into the Huntsman doing some serious damage. While it took another turn to kill him these kept this strong unit in a good position to flank hit the remaining Ogres. The Bolt-Thrower also takes out more of the Bulls.
Things get confused here with the lower right hand corner of the map descending into one huge melee with Ogres everywhere. In a series of battles Stephen displays some good tactics and wipes out both units of Spears and the Swordmasters capturing their banners with his Iron Guts. The Gorger also makes an appearance and hits the Bolt-Thrower before overruning.
The DP hit the Ogre left flank & Dragon overruns the rest
(Note the captured banner with the DP & the absence of the other Ogre units)
The only positives here for me were the Dragon Princes on the right killing the Hunter and getting a hit on the Bulls and Gorger, and the other DP flank charging the Ironguts. A series of good dice rolls and lucky overruns see the DP units wipe out and overrun the Ironguts, remaining Bulls and the Gnoblars recapturing the Elven banners and leaving only the Gorger alive. They are added in this by the Dragon rear charging the Ironguts and helping to break them. What at Turn 4 was looking like a massive Ogre Victory with the HE army nearly routed quickly turns the other way with almost the entire Ogre army destroyed in the space of one turn.
This turn culminates with the Dragon and Gorger fighting it out and the Dragon victorious and the only remaining Ogre unit - the trappers who fled in Turn 1 - finally rallying and returning to the game right on the table edge. End result is a massive victory to the High Elves thanks to the timely rear charge of the Dragon and flank charge of the DP on the IronGuts and Stephens unlucky dice rolls - he failed 2 yes 2 close Leadership tests to see his units break. In the end it was those failed break tests and the attack of the 2nd DP unit that cost him the game.
Big thanks to Stephen for another fun, friendly and fair game - which once again ended quickly, what happens which Ogres march 12" and HE 10"!!!! As a comparison the 2000pt Skaven vs. New Chaos battle on the table next to us was only in Turn 3 by the time we had finished.