2.0 BETA Games- Game 3

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  • So my third game of 2.0 BETA and I’m currently 2-0, we’ll see how long my winning streak lasts. I’ve recently commissioned a centerpiece model for my army, the first model in my HBE army that I won’t paint and it’s an Ancient Dragon. This unit is in an interesting place, it got some countervailing buffs and nerfs in the transition from 1.3 and I was keen to try it out.

    Sea Dragon Host List:
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    Prince, Ancient Dragon: Great Weapon- Blessed Enscriptions, Shield- Starmetal Enchant
    Commander, Master of the Craneig Tower: BSB, Heavy Armor- Basalt Infusion, Shield- Willows Ward, Spear, Magical Heirloom
    8 Lancers, Champ/Std- Warbanner of Ryma
    11 Archers, Muso/Std- Banner of Becalming
    2x5 Reavers
    3x RBTs
    5x Ryma Knights, Muso/Champ
    23x Swordmasters, FC- Navigators Banner

    So the core is the SM block and MoCT and the AD. The rest is shooting, chaff and some reasonable cavalry units to go in with the AD and take challenges.



    EoS Guns List:
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    My opponents list fit into the category of a tough match up for me. I knew a gunline build would really hurt my fragile swordmasters and he had a number of units that could seriously threaten the AD. It wasn’t a full gunline as he took a couple of units and characters focused on combat, but roughly 70 st 4 ap2 shots, a volley gun and a steam tank is a lot of shooting…
    Prelate on Warhorse 1+ save
    Knight Commander 1+, Lucky Charm, Sonnstahl
    Marshall BSB, 1+ Hammer of Witches
    Prelate, Death Warrant and something defensive
    Cosmology Adept
    Divination Adept
    Engineer with Long Rifle
    20ish Handgunners, Champ with Long Rifle, Banner that gives you +1 to hit on stand and shoot
    20ish Handgunners
    10 Reiters with Miniguns
    20ish Imperial Guard with Great Weapons and FC
    20 Sword and Board support unit
    8 Knightly Order Cavalry (1+ Cav Hammers)
    Steam Tank
    Volley Gun


    The basic concept of his list was shoot a ton, backed up by stars align and altered sight and accurate order. Then stand and shoot when your opponent tried to come in and mop up whatever is left after 200-250 handgun shots with the knight bus and Imperial Guard unit. A solid plan.


    Spell Selection:

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    MoCT: I hemmed and hawed and ultimately chose to go with Quicksilver lash vs Ravens wing. So I had Healing Waters, Oaken Throne, Hereditary, Awaken the Beast and Quicksilver Lash
    Cosmology Adept: Ice and Fire and Altered Sight
    Divination Adept: Stars Align and Quicksilver Lash



    Mission and Deployment Type:

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    We got Dawn Assault and then completely forgot the secondary objective until the middle of the first turn. To avoid giving someone an edge we defaulted to Hold the Center. He chose sides so I got to deploy first.



    Deployment:

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    With that amount of shooting I decided to drop everything for first turn. I wanted to use the central forest to my advantage and cover my GW and Archers there. I also contemplated hiding the SMs in there. Then my AD, this is the first of a couple mistakes with the AD, I dropped it out on the side where I could hide it behind the hill after first turn movement.
    My opponent basically put his entire army on the opposite side of the board from the AD, except the steam tank and the hellblaster, probably hoping to blast the thing off the table if it moved forward. He castled his handgunner units around his Imperial Guard in the center to set up the stand and shoot mechanic and dropped his knight bus on my weak flank.
    Deployment after Vanguards

    From left to right he had: Knights (Knight Commander and Prelate here), 20 swordsmen behind the ruins, Handgunners, Imperial Guard, Reiters vanguarded up, Handgunners with special banner and engineer, volley gun, steam tank



    Sea Dragon Host- Turn 1:

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    Movement:
    I pushed up, I was going to get shot to hell one way or the other, I’d rather close range and set up some T2 charges.
    I moved my GW and Archers into the forest as planned and set my right reavers and KoR up to charge the hellblaster (wanted to create some target saturation there).
    After all my careful calculations I just ended up moving the AD max towards the center and forwards, just ensuring his steam tank couldn’t get out of my LOS around the hill.

    Magic:
    I ended up with a 2 dice advantage and saved some tokens for later turns.
    Still figuring out the MoCT magic phase I cast oaken throne, which my opponent let through. He then dispelled the hereditary with all his dice and I got healing waters up on the SMs. That’s about what I wanted.



    Shooting:
    I wanted to beat up those reiters so both RBTs on the left shot at them, out of 5 wounds he made 3 6+ saves, I killed 2.
    My right RBT shot at the steam tank and put through a flukey 3 wounds
    My archers picked on the handgunners with engineer and killed 3
    My GW managed to put -1 to hit on the volley gun but did no wounds

    EoS Guns T1:

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    Movement:
    Not much here, he left his reiters still, shuffled his infantry around a bit and started swinging his cav bus around the ruins.

    Magic:
    This was the start of an epically bad dice turn for my opponent, he failed to get a single spell off in magic phase despite having a 3 dice advantage.

    Shooting:
    The bad luck continues as between all his shooting he manages to kill:
    4 KoR
    2 SMs
    1 Lancer
    1 Wound to AD
    I felt like I got off pretty light there, especially with the lancers.


    (this is in the middle to end of the shooting phase)



    Sea Dragon Host Turn 2:

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    Feeling pretty confident after a rough turn for my opponent I made a couple of charges.

    Movement:
    I started by failing my decimated test on the KoR on a rerollable 5 cold blooded…
    AD charges the Stank and fails (I think this was a mistake, should have moved towards the center of the table)
    SMs charge the Reiters, who flee. To avoid the stand and shoot I choose not to redirect and stumble forward 3 inches.
    The lancers charge the hand gunners on the left of the imperial guard. I figured, I’d lose 3-4 and hold that unit up for a turn or so. Unfortunately, my opponents dice melted and lit on fire and I lost the remaining 7 lancers to the stand and shoot, k…
    My reavers charged the volley gun and lost one to DTs but made it.



    Magic:
    I got a decent phase with a 2-3 dice advantage, all I cared about was getting one of my three defensive spells up on the SMs to help them weather the next turn of fire. I managed to not roll above a 2 with any of my casting dice this phase and literally failed to cast, or got dispelled on all 3 spells.
    Due to all the fizzles I was able to get quicksilver lash off on the Imperial Guard, my opponent couldn’t have cared less, I killed 3. I brought back a KoR with the attribute.

    Shooting:
    My bad luck continued and between 3 RBTs, my archers and my GW managed to kill a handful of the hand gunners with the engineer. Fortunately they did fail their resilience test and they were -1 to hit.

    Combat:
    My reavers managed to do a couple wounds, lost one in return and the volley gun held.



    EoS Guns Turn 2:

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    Movement:
    My opponent rallied his reiters and moved them through his lines into firing position.
    He moved his cav bus forward pretty tentatively, I’m not sure why.
    He also didn’t seem to have a plan for the sword and board, they just sat there.
    His cosmology mage pops out and sort of floats around, not sure why, he’d live to regret this.



    Magic:
    I wanted to stop 2 spells, reroll to hits on the reiters and the magic missile which I knew would be coming for my sword masters. With the 7 dispel dice I rolled split between these two spells, I managed to not roll higher than a 2 and both went off. He killed 5 SMs with the magic missile.

    Shooting:
    I’ll just summarize, because this was awful and it still hurts to think about, I lost:
    16 SMs
    2 wounds on my BSB
    4 wounds on my AD
    In one turn my strongest combat unit was gone and my AD had lost over half his HPs.

    Combat:
    My reavers managed to break the volley gun in one little ray of hope and pursued into the flank of the hand gunners with engineer.



    Sea Dragon Host- Turn 3:

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    Reeling from the last turn, I went into full damage control mode.

    Movement:
    With only 3 wounds my AD couldn’t afford to leave the stank alive so he charged and barely made it
    My KoR charged the hand gunners with engineer
    My BSB fell back and joined the archers
    My other reavers moved up to chaff the knight bus



    Magic:
    I managed to get healing waters off on my archers as an insurance policy, healing a wound on my BSB and got quicksilver lash off on his reiters, killing 2.

    Shooting:
    I shot everything I had at the damned reiters and managed to kill 4 more, he made 2 more 6+ saves against my RBTs. Fortunately, those 2 failed their break check and ran through the ruins, losing another 1. This reiter would never rally and flees off the board.

    Combat:
    My KoR and reavers kill 7 hand gunners, they hold.
    My AD does 3 wounds to the stank…not the 4 I needed, 3. He grinds back and does 2 wounds leaving me on one left. I reform to shift closer to the center of the board.



    EoS Guns Turn 3:

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    Movement:
    He charges my chaffing reavers with the knight bus
    He turns his other hand guns towards the action, but fails his swift reform.
    His Imperial guard reposition to get closer to the center but turn to face the AD

    Magic:
    He gets off another magic missile, this time on the GW and kills all but one, who holds.

    No shooting...thankfully

    Combat:
    I kill his stank and reform to face the action
    I kill enough of his hand gunners to break his steadfast, I have him run from my reavers and pursue with my KoR. I restrain with my reavers.



    Sea Dragon Host Turn 4:

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    Things were pretty touch and go there in turns 2 and 3, but I saw a path to victory.

    Movement:
    My GW fails his decimated test on a rerollable 5 cold blooded.
    I charge the Imperial Guard with the AD, I reasoned that if I made it I’d buff the hell out of it and he’d probably challenge me out then I could start grinding him down. I failed and fell just short of the forest.
    I charged the hand gunners with the KoR, who could not stand and shoot because I was within movement range
    I wasn’t exactly sure what to do with the reavers so I brought them more central to act as a utility player and a shield for my BSB
    I moved the BSB close enough to the AD for healing



    Magic:
    My opponent stopped healing waters on the AD and I got off the hereditary spell and quicksilver lash on the Imperial Guard healing a wound on the dragon and the last wound on my BSB. I killed a couple Imperial Guard

    Shooting:
    I focused almost everything on the Imperial Guard and managed to peel off another handful. At this point they’d lost around 10-12 and were not nearly as scary.
    As a throwaway for lack of good targets I shot my right most RBT at the cosmology adept hanging out by the Imperial Guard. Needing 5s to hit due to the forest I hit 5 times and did 3 wounds killing the mage outright!

    Combat:
    My KoR manage to kill 5-6, he held and we started the grind.



    EoS Guns- Turn 4/Thoughts on the game:

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    At this stage my opponent and I discussed it and we agreed he’d probably get 2 RBTs, but I’d probably get the objective, his Imperial Guard and maybe the hand gunners.

    EoS List:
    Holy s..., that's a lot of firepower. The parent/support unit stand and shoot mechanic makes charging into that gun line a really mean proposition. I really liked all the synergies that the EoS were able to bring to bear.
    I don't know how many points 10 reiters with mini guns are, but I hope they're really expensive.
    His magic phase was perfect for his list, redundant shooting buffs, tons of channels, magic missiles to enhance the gun line (like it needed it).

    I think my opponent misplayed his right flank, he should have jammed the cav bus down my throat earlier and the sword and board were out of place from turn 1. That sword and board should have, at a minimum, been ready to march on the objective in late turns.

    HBE:
    AD: The combo with the MoCT is undeniable, being able to heal/prevent 2 wounds a turn is strong. Had I played it better I think this model could shine. I think it's still a little overcosted, but it protects its points pretty well.

    MoCT: Even with the magic heirloom spell selection can be a problem. My casting rolls were shocking in Turn 2 and I realized that this new magic phase gave me a false sense of security. I was so sure that I'd get off one defensive buff at least that I didn't bother to contingency plan. I'll need to be careful about that, or invest more in magic.

    SMs: Guess what, SMs still die really fast to shooting. Lists like these are why I'm not sure this unit can be taken to a tournament. You might get 3-4 games where they blend everything in sight, but then you'll face an EoS/OK/SE/HBE/VS gun line and they will literally evaporate. Looking back on it, even if I'd gotten up healing waters or hereditary in Turn 2 I still would have lost the majority of the unit. I'll need to think about this one, it might be time to try out LG or FW.

    248 times read

Comments 3

  • JackStreicher -

    Well written and nicely played.

    About HBE: Preventing 2 wounds on the Dragon isn't strong, that's broken HBE != VC.

    SM die like every unit DE have if you think SM aren't wortwhile then s.o. gave the rest of the HBE army too much defense 8|

  • Zeev -

    About SM....welcome to every unit when playing as Dread Elves...

  • Calcathin -

    Very nice article Vesp, as usual! That last turn of magic might have given you the breath you needed with the extra Wound back and the security of the Hereditary. A shame we didn’t see it shone with one more turn. My exact same thoughts also on the SM’s, as they can really shine on some match-ups but others are really bad. Of nite: the list you posted is missing the GW and, in hinsight, you may have been better combat reforming AD after first round against STank. Good job!