May 26, 2014

Horned Rat VII - Dwarves stand tall!!

Great weekend at Horned Rat VII with 5 very enjoyable games of Warhammer under my belt with my Dwarves of Karak Thorinkin.  Overall, I finished 10th (out of a field of 26) my second top 10 finish in two events after getting 7th at Runefang the month before (albeit in a smaller field of 16) and had my best result securing 3 solid wins.  I got to play one new opponent Hamish Gordon which was a thoroughly enjoyable game, finally managed to beat another regular opponent Kent Jackson, and got stomped yet again by Neil Williamson who I just can't seem to beat.
My army
My fellow club members had mixed fortunes but I think they enjoyed themselves.  McCrae Louden had the best weekend of all securing 2nd spot at the event with his Dwarves an absolutely outstanding effort.  I think he only lost one game and that wasn't by much and ended up just a few battle points off taking the top spot.... cue grumbling from the anti-Dwarf lobby...

Still haven't got a new camera so photos relied on my rather old phone *sob*

Game 1 vs. Vampires (13-7)
Ancestral Grudge - HATRED!!
Up against club mate Reagan and a list I had played just two weeks before the tournament. In that encounter I got absolutely smashed with Reagan tabling me for what, in the tournament, would have been a 20-0 win to him. This time I had a much better idea of how to play it and things went my way. Things that went well were - The large piece of impassable terrain (ETC rules love this stuff) in the centre of the table. This protected one flank as I moved up. - The unit of Rangers and two Gyrocopters redirecting a Spirit Host and his big unit of Crypt Horrors away from the rest of my army. It cost me 270pts but it meant neither of these units played any other part in the battle. - Reagan moving up his Terrorgheist too early allowing me to get a charge into it with a block of Warriors and accompanying Runesmith. It died in the 1st round of combat.
This proved to be an important part of the game keeping these two VC units away from my units.
Vargheists finish off my warmachines in the rear while the Hammerers and Warriors chop up some Ghols.  
The key moment of the match was Reagans charge into my Hammerers with his Ghoul King and horde of Ghouls. The impassable terrain and unit positions meant he couldn’t charge the Warriors as he would have liked and he had to hit the Hammerers instead. While the Ghoul King took off 8-10 Hammerers a round by himself they stuck around long enough for a block of Warriors to hit them in the flank. Even with a unit of 30-40 Zombies hitting those Warriors in the flank I still did enough damage to beat Reagan on Combat Resolution by killing the entire unit. His Ghoul King died and the rest of his army started to crumble. The Stone-Thrower also got lucky and killed the Coven Throne with one shot, but by this time I had lost all of my war-machines to his Varghiests, all 3 Gryocopters, the Rangers and off course the Hammerers. Consequently, victory wasn’t as complete as it could have been and the end was a 13-7, a fair representation of the battle we fought out.

Game 2 vs. Tomb Kings (0-20) 
Ancestral Grudge - HATRED!!!
Neil had 3 Sphinxs… three!!!! Plus two catapult Trebuchet things a lot of shooting and some other random stuff including a casket. I basically lost this game on deployment when I picked the wrong side and then deployed badly. Neil was able to move his big monsters up through soft-cover negating my Organ Guns which couldn’t hit a thing. One turn I had 14 shots to hit and rolled 12 1’s and two 2’s. This would be a pattern for the rest of the weekend where the Organ Guns did pretty much nothing, unable to hit or wound most of what they shot at. Unable to hit or wound Neil’s Sphinx’s all three of them hit my blocks and just tore through them. The Gyrocopters did reasonably well but by this time my big blocks had been smashed to pulp. For the 2nd event in a row Neil also killed by General with Killing Blow. I always enjoy playing Neil but I just can’t beat him. I think I need an-anti Neil Dwarf list that can deal with him.

This is what happens when you deploy badly and can't hit anything you get 3 Sphinx's charging you.
Doesn't seem fair really - 28 Dwarfs vs. 3 Sphinx's?  Didn't last long.
Meanwhile just because I marched another unit out on its lonesome where it got promptly slaughtered
Last throw of the dice.  Conga line the Hammerers with 2 characters in front.  Meant that the 2 Sphinxs and the chariots out front could only charge the characters and not hit the unit, and that Id at least get a lot of attacks on the side against the other Sphinx.  In the end it didn't really matter that much.

Game 3 vs. Dwarfs (20-0) 
Ancestral Grudge - HATRED
Dwarf vs. Dwarf against Adam. We enjoyed it by having every character challenge every character but I had warmachines, he didn’t and my Gyrocopters were causing havoc. Adams a good mate but you don’t come to a tournament to play club-mates and especially not to play Dwarf on Dwarf match ups.

Game 4 vs. Wood Elves (14-6) 
Ancestral Grudge - HATRED
A game of missed opportunities against the new Wood Elves with a mass of magical arrows, but one in which I finally used the Gyrocopters properly. The Master Rune of Grungi allowed me to march straight at Kent’s army while feeling relatively save and I kept two of the Gyro’s close to my advancing units inside the ward save bubble. The other Gyro and the Organ guns (which finally worked in this game) did a great job protecting my rear by stopping the Warhawks coming in. Kent was horribly unlucky though when 3 Warhawks failed to kill of my 6 Rangers and were held up by a single stubborn Artillery crew member. The Treeman, fantastic looking new model, came in and Tree Whacked (yes that’s the official codex term) my General nearly killing him. The General died the next round but my Warriors smashed the Treeman as well.
Kept one unit of Warriors back as there wasn't room for them.  Wood Elves in a Venom Thicket one unit with Double shot arrows the other with AP.  6" march move just isn't enough.

Moving forward with Gyros under the Grungi bubble
Hammerers ready to rear charge the Glade Guard but the Warriors kill them all first.  Forgot to target the L4 in combat so she fled and then I elected to hold rather than chase her and then failed to go after her the next turn

 Wood Elf shooting is good but it still needed 5’s to wound my Dwarfs and 6’s to wound the Gyros, two of the latter proceeded to flame template away half of Kent’s army before the Hammerers charged in. Key moment came in Turn 6 though. Kent had one block of troops left. I had all of mine including the Hammerers and a block of Warriors (with Runesmith) that was under ½ strength (so half points already to Kent). Both units were in position to charge the Glade Guard unit with the already fleeing Spellweaver in front of the Hammerers right on the table edge. Instead of declaring a charge on the Spellweaver forcing it off the board and gaining the points the Hammerers went into the Glade Guard. They failed allowing meaning the Warriors went in by themselves, got shot to bits and then wiped out in the process. The Runesmith hung on thanks to the MR of Groth the One-Eye but that bad decision cost me 550+ pts and a 20-0 win. I enjoyed the game, first time I’ve beaten Kent too which was nice particularly as he is a nice guy to play against.

Game 5 vs. Hamish G (Empire 0-20) 
Ancestral Grudge - Characters all have hatred vs. Characters
Two units of Budgie riders, a stank, Hellblaster, Cannon and a light bus hidden in a horde of infantry. Deployed badly allowing the Stank to kill 2 Gyro’s, empire warmachines were better than mine and killed both Organ Guns. The Grudge Thrower decided this game to scatter too far, whereas in Game 4 it couldn’t miss and no matter what strength I put into Hamish’s 1+ AS models he kept making saves. Hammerers charging with a Runesmith so hitting on S7 AP so -5 to his AS Empire need 6’s to save, he rolls 6’s. Warriors charging with Runesmith hitting on S6 AP and then S5 AP in rounds after that and he keep’s making his 5’s and 4’s to save. Result? Lots of attacks go in but hardly anyone gets taken off. Deploying badly and poor use of Gyrocopters hurt and I should have remembered how the Stank worked. Still it was another enjoyable game, my first against Hamish who I would be more than happy to play again. Not the finish I was looking for – I only had my 6 Rangers left, mainly because we both forgot they were there after Turn 2.
This match-up didn't end well.
You would think I could kill all 4 in one round, but NO!!!
Got the 10" charge off on the Knights so hitting at S7 with AP but the damn Hellblaster had scored 30 shots the turn before and taking off half the unit.  Round 1 killed 5 Knights, after that it was all over.

So 47 battle points in the end which if I hadn't made those Turn 6 mistakes against Kent could have been 50-53 which would have shifted me up the table a fair bit.  While I am winning games I am still suffering 0-20 defeats which really hurts.  If I can work on cutting these out and when losing at least keep myself to say an 5-15 or 8-12 then that will help.  My goal for the weekend was 50 battle points so I was 3 short and I need to work on my deployment.

10th place should also shift me up the WHFB Tournament Rankings but my thoughts of taking the best General Dwarf icon away from Tane did not count on McCrae's performances of late which have seen him jump to 24th after 3 top 10 finishes in his last 3 events.  I have managed however to jump from 43rd to 33rd which is pretty damn good for me.


Scott Bowman said...

Sounds like a pretty solid performance John, well done.

Rex Foote said...

Well done, it sounds like you did well and enjoyed it. As a side note I have nominated you for an Liebster award. It helps promote wargaming and modeling blogs