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The latest issue of the 9th Scroll is available! You can read all about it in the news.

  • New

    Matt and Kev bring you another all-action pod covering the thrills and spills of the group stages in CC2. Can Matt get the Feldraks going? Can Kev rediscover the KOE after his Beast Herd escapades? All is revealed in the latest ear candy from the Paired Weapons Podcast.

    In other news the lads both put new microphones on their birthday lists as the sound-gremlins reemerge for which they are terribly sorry and hope it doesn't spoil your fun! Matt apologises for a mistake no one's noticed and Kev signs up for the Thundercocks Knock Out tournament with a surprising list...

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  • With the Celtic Cup 2 now fully underway the lads attempt to review all 16 armies in an hour, one from each faction in the Ninth Age. Having given themselves 60 minutes they then waste a bunch of time talking about other things such as book recommendations (Matt gets the author's name wrong), painting updates and Kev's unwarranted and irrational prejudice against bases.

    If you want to have a look at the lists then here they are in all their glory!

    docs.google.com/document/d/12wJRo…/edit?usp=sharing

    In other news Matt paints lots of walls and Kev is unfaithful to the Paired Weapons Podcast and listens to another pod, whose name we shall not deign to mention…

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  • Jack is joined by Hristo and Colin to discuss how to go about doing predictions and pairing for team tournaments.

    Link Dump
    Outro: Throne - Bring Me the Horizon

    Contact us
    Email: thundercockpodcast@gmail.com
    Twitter: @TheThundercocks
    Forum: @Gelmarus

    The Show!
    iTunes: itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/th…po…d1059243331?mt=2

    soundcloud.com/jack-chapman-36…edictions-for-team-events [Read More]
  • What can one say for the Danish? When it comes to the international wargaming scene, they are up there with the Polish, Italians and the Spanish: they’ve been around since the beginning of the international team tournaments in the legacy game, they are one of a handful teams to have won the coveted ETC gold, and they count among their ranks many wargaming veterans. In recent years we’ve had the pleasure of facing them twice, the last time in 2018 in a very tight round that saw the Belgian team snatch victory from the jaws of defeat: that year that victory earned us the 4th spot, and allowed us to jump ahead of the Danish. But the Top 5 is where the Danes naturally reside, as they’ve proven time and time again.

    So if anyone was looking forward to an easy round for the closing of the tournament, he’d be very disappointed! Their lists were all very well built, with a clear monster-mash orientation that made us a bit nervous. It was no surprise that our pairing matrix ended up looking like a sunset: loads of oranges and reds everywhere. After the pairing process was done, we ended up with a projected score that was close to the 60-point cap; that wouldn’t do, clearly. We’ve faced this problem before in team tournaments: that’s where our captain says “get creative”. By that he means trying to win games that you would normally be struggling to not lose by much. I have to say that I enjoy this mode, because it’s very close to my usual approach; I’d never go into a game trying to not lose, but rather consider the enemy army as a puzzle or challenge that I have to overcome. For this round my puzzle would be Jens’ @Myggen88 Sylvan Elves.


    Myggen88 wrote:


    So that’s practically one bow short of the maximum amount of bows one can field in a Sylvan Elf army, accompanied by a couple of Treefathers, some scorers and Druidism magic to keep these archers operational for as long as possible.
    The army is also deceptively hard to crack for Beasts, because despite their squishy nature the elite archers have fangs: every skirmishing unit can pump out around 15 high-quality attacks that almost hit automatically, which is kind of the perfect counter for my MSU elements.

    So I’d have to (you guessed it) get creative. First order of business was to stack the odds in my favor for the one thing that I could control: the secondary objective. That was Secure Target for this round, and this meant that at least I’d get to decide in part where the action would happen. This is really welcome when fighting against such a maneuverable enemy that has no intention of engaging unless it’s on their own terms. Our deployment would be Counterthrust, which again helped by ensuring that I’d know the positioning of the enemy scorers prior to deploying mine. I won the roll for sides and picked the side with the hill: while it had less cover, it also meant that my opponent wouldn’t be able to dance around the hill, denying me crucial charges on the turn that I finally got close enough to his squishy elves. I also placed my objective marker to the top left, thus forcing the SE to commit at least some forces into that corner, and thus allowing some of my units to take advantage of the cover of the impassable.

    For magic we both chose Master of Earth, Stoneskin and Summer Growth, with the only difference being that I opted for Healing Waters for my last spell whereas my opponent picked Entwining Roots.

    When fighting Sylvans with such ranged potential and 360 degree movement, it is important to somehow control the flow of the battle. In my case, that would happen by targeting the elements that were least maneuverable, namely the Dryads and the Treefathers. After exchanging the mandatory three deployments (for my opponent these proved to be the two treefathers and a unit of Sylvan Archers, my adversary dropped all that remained to get a chance at that opening volley, Dark Rain or not. That was a justified decision, because the alternative would be starting the game with the beasts too close to the SE lines for the elves’ comfort.

    I countered with a deployment that covered the entire zone, both to protect against scouts, but also to force the SE to spread out as well or risk a mid-game enveloping maneuver. This time the Minotaurs decided to forego their usual conga formation… [Read More]
  • Every team in sports has a “rivalry” with someone, for reasons usually nobody understands: Bulls vs Pistons, Manchester United vs Liverpool, Real Madrid vs Barcelona, Red Sox vs Yankees (I admit that I googled that). It turns out the Belgians also have this, with no other than our neighbors: yes, we and the friendly Dutch have had many a fight in T9A and before that, quite often with a pint of good old beer (and not the piss that is Heineken). I remember when I got recruited in the team back in 2016, and asked what our goals were for the year, our then-captain said without hesitating: “we need to beat the Dutch”.

    Now, reader, don’t criticize us just yet: it’s not that we dislike our border friends, nor that we are threatened by their abnormal height or the fact that they combine savory pancakes with syrup. Nor that they call it Stroop instead of syrup, like a normal person would. It’s just good to have something of a healthy competition. Back in the Warhammer days, the Dutch would come across the border and “healthy competition” the poor Belgian scene, steal their pride and their prizes along with it. Long before I even stepped my foot in the land of chocolate, compromise and overall political indifference (who else could go on without a government for 2 years??), Belgian wargamers devised a plan called “soft scores” to keep the Dutch away. Then the Dutch went ahead and became some of the best painters in Europe, just to spite their neighbors. I could go on, but it should be clear to you by now that we’re in the right and they are in the wrong and that we should win for reasons.

    Or at least that’s how my then captain explained it to me. So when we got paired against the Dutch for our game 5, it suddenly became clear that our objective for the tournament had changed: we just couldn’t lose against the Dutch.

    My opponent, Niek, @Wurzaq was an embodiment of all the virtues that spite the Belgians: super-nice and fun to play against, was Dutch and probably drank Heineken and mispronounced the word “syrup”. That’s all I needed to know, and reason enough to do battle with imaginary toy soldiers!
    It was a good thing that the objective for the round was King of the Hill, but a bit worse that my enemy was bringing more speed, better armour and better fighting characters than me!

    Wurzaq wrote:




    So reading the list I noticed something that gave me a glimmer of hope: my adversary had skimped on the command model options, so as to get more models in his list! While I’m not the one to talk about ignoring command models, it is slightly riskier for a big lance of knights with a huge footprint, compared to a small minotaur conga. So going back to my Sylvan Elf roots, I decided that the way to win this was by taking advantage of the superior maneuverability of my army, or at least part of it: all of the centaurs would begin the game sober, giving me three vanguarding units that could be either used as late-game redirectors or simply threaten the knight busses with flank charges and the such.

    I also resolved to make King of the Hill harder for my the knights by splitting the terrain pieces diagonally. With fewer units than me and with no possibility for sneaky swift reforms, I was confident that at the very least I could keep the knights away from my terrain piece or land a foot into theirs.

    For spells, the Damsel got Awaken the Beast, Swarm of Insects, Totemic Summon and Break the Spirit, while the Soothsayer went with Healing Waters, Entwining Roots, Summer Regrowth and Stoneskin.

    We alternated deployments (it was Frontline Clash) all the way till the end, with me keeping my big blocks for until after the KoE had dropped their entire force. My opponent went for the side with the hill, and used his lances to make sure that I wouldn’t be able to infiltrate my vanguarding centaurs past his arc of sight if I got first turn. This left him with a weighed left flank, with only a single unit of aspirants threatening to move past my forces and cheekily score the objective. To counter this, I placed my GW centaurs on the right hand side of the board: they’d have to first deal with the aspirants, then move back towards the center where the action would happen. The rest of my army went across from the knights,… [Read More]
  • So moving past the halftime of the Ocho, we’d face Guardia Varega, a Spanish team comprised of seasoned tournament players. My opponent for the round would be Gonzalo @gundizalbo , of former Balance Team glory, and of ETC Australia fame. His build of Saurian Ancients seems to have defined the SA meta Down Under, and he’s had a great run with it in the past years’ ETCs.


    To me, this was a very nostalgic kind of list, taking me back to the first games of 5th edition when all I had was a bunch of skinks with bows, a big block of monopose Saurus Warriors and my precious Slann mage-priest carried to battle inside a huge Temple Guard unit. Only difference is that back then my Temple guard used to be called in jest “Proxy Guard” (because what student had enough $$ to buy a full pewter unit using blisters of 2 figurines!), and they tended to ran away from Fear-causing skeletons. Ah, the joys of mid-hammer!


    So taking a closer look, the list has a very impressive magic phase, with loads of spells that are easily cast on 2-dice with a +2 to cast bonus. It also has some ranged support as well as the dreaded Ramphodons to hunt my squishy centaurs. Nevertheless, I had this down as a good game, possibly because of the Breakthrough Scenario: the odds of Beast Herds losing Breakthrough are low, unless you really mess things up. So first order of business was to make sure I wouldn’t mess up that badly!


    Our deployment was Refused Flank. I had the choice of the side, and decided to deny the hill to the saurus blocks: they’d be hard to shift from there. Gonzalo seized the initiative and went for a drop for the first turn. That in turn meant that I could counterdeploy and the first thing to do was make sure that the Ramphodons couldn’t fly behind my lines.


    We ended up with weighed flanks for me, my big blocks facing each a unit of ramphodons and a unit of Caimans. In the center, I kept as many chaff-like units, to try and block the saurian infantry from pushing outwards and crushing my big blocks while the Ramphodons and Caimans kept them occupied. The Lance centaurs were drunk, and the big unit sober.




    For magic, the Skink Priest picked Awaken the Beast and Insect Swarm, while the Quatl went with Fireball, Healing Waters, Quickilver Lash, Spectral Blades, Know thy Enemy and Spark of Life. My soothsayer opted for Healing Waters, Master of Earth, Stoneskin and Summer Growth.The gargoyles found a cozy place 18” away from all enemies behind their lines and scouted there. The Ramphodons unsurprisingly marked my big centaurs and the wildhorns. The Chameleons scouted inside the forest opposite my wildhorns, and the battle horns were sounded!



    TURN 1 – Saurian Ancients


    First turn movement was cautious from the SA: the ramphodons found a spot out of the wildhorn’s arc of sight to the right, while the chameleons and spearbacks moved up to pepper the centaurs with arrows. In the middle the Warriors and Temple Guard both moved up, while the ramphodons to the left backed away from my centaurs.

    In magic I witnessed first-hand the effectiveness of the SA magic phase, even on the card “1”. Swarm of Insects and Spark of creation both went off, putting two wounds to my minotaurs to the left and killing a feral hound respectively. Shooting was greatly hampered by the Dark Rain, still a Centaur died to poisoned blowpipe shots to the right, and two feral hounds died to the skink chief’s magical bow: they passed their leadership with the general’s help.




    TURN 1 – Beast Herds


    The fact that my feral hounds were still alive enabled me to make a push for the flanks: the left centaurs spotted the Ramphodons 19” away and declared that long charge, making it in. The rightmost centaurs fell upon the chameleons, since the Saurians had truly trapped them: I figured that taking the 160 points of the chameleons would be a fair trade!


    Gaining momentum from the successful centaur charge to the left, the Centaurs + BSB were now able to push forward aggressively, past the Saurian Warriorsarc of sight and in front of the Caimans, hoping to collapse that flank on the following turn. The Feral Hounds jumped in front of the Temple Guard to keep them occupied while the wildhorns and gargoyles both… [Read More]
  • Boom! We're back!

    Rumours of our demise are shown to have been much exaggerated as the Podcasting Paired Weapons burst back into the podoshpere and down your ear holes with Episode 20! Broadcast directly from Matt's new house (which nearly killed him and others moving into)Kev graces Matt with his presence and the lads record Face to Face, in a truly weird experience for all concerned.
    Covering the Final of Celtic Cup 1 and the newly set up Celtic Cup 2 (The Revenge of the Fras)the lads both look backwards and forwards to more UB Tournaments whilst pondering many-a-thing.In other news Matt and Kev battle it out for Paired Weapons supremacy on the UB field, Kev sells some things on eBay, Matt tells tales of fisticuffs and then gets the year of the American Revolution wrong by nearly 20 years! At least he got the right Century!

    [Read More]
  • So after the sound beating we took by the French, we were going up against team Ukraine. These guys have been around for quite some time, and they’ve made their presence felt both at the ETC (6th last year) and in other international events. Our team strategy against them revolved around getting as many good matches as possible, which meant that yours truly had to be thrown under the bus a bit: this usually happens when one player’s estimation matrix is not good enough to guarantee a favorable matchup, and means that he’s instead used to draw a bad game away from the teammates.


    Team Ukraine’s lists were a mix of very defensive lists capable of point denial, with a couple of very aggressive armies tacked on. I’d be facing one of the latter, the Sylvan Elves of Artem @Artem Kurhanskii.




    I was intrigued by this army, because it combined elements that I am a big fan of (namely the bladedancers and the kestrels backed up by Shamanism and Cosmology) with some lesser used entries such as the Shapeshifters, as well as the Sacred Seeds/Mist Walker combo. I had rated this as a bad matchup, but was relatively optimistic about my chances of picking up the objective for the round, which was hold the ground.


    How does one deal with such an aggressive vanguard army? I thought about this a bit prior to the game, and I decided that stealing the initiative against a vanguarding army that moves 2-3” more than me and strikes first across the board was not possible. So instead my path to victory would have to come from forcing combats that would be favorable to me in the long run, or by baiting the enemy into losing positions.


    I got to pick sides, and opted for the one with the hill. My opponent then dropped his entire army for the first turn, which allowed me to counterdeploy and close off any passage to my backline for the kestrels and the vanguarding shapeshifters. I expected the SE to rush me so as to prevent the wildhorns from getting to the central objective, but there was no way around that, just hoping that my countermeasures worked.


    (deployment picture was forgotten, so here's a mockup based on the first turn pic - Spoilers!)



    For magic, I picked Healing Waters, Master of Earth, Stoneskin and Summer Growth, while my opponent opted for Ice and Fire/Perception of Strength and Beast Awakens/ Totemic Summon/ Break the spirit and the SE hereditary spell.



    TURN 1 – SE


    Artem wasted no time messing around: the Shapeshifter chieftain moved up in front of my Wildhorns, plonked the Sacred Seed forest down, and the Dancer unit teleported right in front of my general! The Shapeshifter prince moved up to block my rightmost minotaurs from aiding in that fight, while both kestrels used their 30” move to relocate to the center of the board and threaten big parts of my army. The heath hunters formed a conga that blocked half my left side in place, and the scorers just kept up, staying out of charge range for the time being. With the Dark Rain up, shooting only killed a single centaur, while magic managed to boost the teleporting Dancers with +1 Strength.




    TURN 1 – Beast Herds


    To say that I had the SE where I wanted them would be a stretch, but I was relatively happy with the position in the board: the dancers had used their mirror, and two key SE characters were exposed. So I went ahead with my pre-formulated plan: the minotaurs charged into the Shapeshifter Prince to pin him down, their counterparts on the other side charged the Heath Hunter chaff, and the Beastlord on foot charged solo into the Bladedancer unit: if the dancers have one weakness, it’s dealing with cowboys. I aligned him opposite the BSB, knowing that I’d get a champion for the first round of combat but that I’d get the BSB on the following one. Finally, the Gargoyles spotted the kestrel flank 19” away and went for it, sadly failing: completing that charge would make my life much easier by pinning the birds down for a turn, enough time for the Beastlord in chariot to wheel around and charge them.


    So with the charges all done, I had to deal with the elephant in the room: two kestrel… [Read More]
  • Hello all, sorry I’ve not touched the blog in a while but tournament games have been a bit thin on the ground since Coronavirus hit so I’ve not had any face to face games since March. I do have a tournament I need to write up so I’ll be doing that soon, honest. Anyway, it’s not like I’ve been quite on the ninth age, started a podcast and have played in 2 on line tournaments with the Beast Herds now, you can hear all about them on the Podcast. If I posted bat reps for them here I’d just be repeating myself. You can see a Battle Report of mine in the latest Ninth Scroll as well, so go check that out.
    All I will say about the Beast Herds is that I love the Minotaur Warlord, he’s what all combat lords should aspire to be. Minotaurs are great, ambushing is really fun and Chariots are the most hit and miss units in the game. I really dislike Centaurs, I think it’s me rather than the Centaurs themselves, I just don’t use them right and they die, a lot. It’s probably because I refuse to use Druidism so I can’t protect them.
    I have also been busy painting for the Tale of Slow Painters we are doing, which is basically a project with the goal of painting 400 points worth of models every two months for 10 months. Afterwards we will all get together and have a mini tournament with our 2000 point forces of excellently painted armies. Here’s some of what I’ve been doing and you can check out the forum here.





    I’m not here to talk about Beast Herds though, that’s what the podcast is for. Today I wanted to do a bat rep with a difference, the difference isn’t just that the game took place entirely on UB (I like UB but for Bat Reps I like to have pictures of models), I used a new army. In fact it’s an unofficial army from the Homebrew section and is the fruits of one man’s labour. I’m using the Grand Companies of the Mercenary States.
    The army is essentially the old Dogs of War army from the world that was but there is so much more variety to it than there has ever been before. I would say that there is perhaps too much variety as the book clocks in at 41 pages, which I think is the biggest slim Army Book out there. There’s a lot of different unit choices in the book and there’s so much variation within each unit choice too that this is really the Swiss army knife of armies. Versatility is listed as their army strength and the book definitely has that. The weakness is that they are relatively low discipline and the whole army relies upon the paymaster who is the BSB for the army but if he dies then all units within his Commanding Presence range must take a Discipline check at -1 Discipline, fail that and your army could be running for the hills. I’m not going to go into the rules too much, I’d suggest checking out the army book here and having a read for yourself.
    By far the hardest part of using this army is trying to come up with a legal list, the book is split into 5 sections; Characters, Core, Special, Best Money Can Buy and Legendary Curiosities and Armoury. Each has its own percentage cap that your army must adhere to which all seems fairly sensible. However, as I mentioned before, almost every unit can be customisable and by giving certain units certain upgrades can make their points count towards a different section or mean they suddenly come out of that section and not the section they are available in.
    Example – Crossbows are a Core unit, with the Veteran upgrade (3+ shooting upgrade) they no longer count towards Core but now come out of the Best Money Can Buy Category, give them Light Armour too then they would come out of the Legendary Curiosities and Armoury section instead. If you upgrade the Crossbows to Dreadnoughts (1+ armour and a 6++ Aegis against Range) then they count towards both Core and Legendary Curiosities and Armoury. It gets confusing fast and is difficult to keep track of so having an app work it all out for you is definitely the easiest way to do it and I think the army is on Army Builder which would make the job easier.
    Anyway, after several rewrites I came up with a list:
    Commander, City State Falerii, Paired Weapons (Heroes Heart), Destiny’s Call = 340
    Captain, City State Regillum, Crossbow (Domingo’s Arbalest), Shield = 240
    Quartermaster, Plate Armour (Alchemists Alloy), Shield (Dusk Forged), Paychest and Bodyguard, Obsidian Rock = 310
    Guild Wizard, Pyromancy, Wizard Master, Talisman of the Void = 420

    16 Crossbowmen, Veteran, Dreadnoughts, Champion, Musician = 434
    15 Crossbowmen, Musician = 240
    35 Pikemen, Full Command, Pistol Champion, Legion Standard = 444
    10 Freelancers, Shield, Lance, Full Command = 440
    16 Paymasters Bodyguard, Plate Armour, Shield, Champion and Standard = 264
    6 Veteran Mercenary Ogres, Iron Fist, Plate Armour, Devastating Charge, Musician, Champion = 676
    15 Mercenary Dwarfs, Veteran, Pirates, Musician, Champion = 445
    Black Powder Artillery, Cannon = 245

    4498
    It turned out to be illegal as I had calculated the cost of the Ogre Mercenaries wrong but for the… [Read More]

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