2.0 BETA Games- Buckeye Battles Game 5 and Wrap Up

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  • Going into Round 5 I knew I’d be facing a tough opponent, sitting at 63 points a win could put me in contention to podium. Additionally, I had my eye on best HBE, but with another HBE general sitting at about the same battle points as me I would really need a win to have a shot at it.
    So I ended up matched with Brandon and his Demon Legions led by a Scourge of Wrath, he had:

    Scourge Legions:

    The Sea Dragon Host:

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    Order of the Fiery Heart Mage Adept on Young Dragon- Alchemy, Dragon Armor- Alchemist Alloy, Shield, Diadem of Protection [General]
    Master of Canreig Tower Adept- Dragon Armor- Essence of Mithril, Great Weapon, Scepter of Power, Longbow [BSB]
    Royal Huntsmen Commander on Lion Chariot- Heavy Armor- Basalt Infusion, Shield, Talisman of Shielding, Great Weapon, Potion of Speed
    29 Citizen Spears- FC- Flaming Standard
    2x 5 Reavers w Bows
    5 Lancers- Champ
    20 Flame Wardens- FC- Flaming Standard
    20 Flame Wardens- FC- Flaming Standard
    3 Sea Guard Reapers

    Thoughts on the Match Up:

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    My first game against a Scourge, my list did not have great answers for it:
    • Lash is ok, but MR2 makes it a 3 dice cast min and does maybe 1-2 wounds per successful cast
    • Bolters can keep him honest, but I think I do maybe 1-2 wounds on average per turn with no cover
    • Royal Huntsmen Chariot Commander can threaten him, but I think it’s a 50/50 that the Scourge just kills him before he can strike
    However, the rest of his list didn’t scare me overly much. I knew Brandon was a good player based on his finish at Cornerhammer and with the Scourge in the mix I thought I was best off trying to hold the line and win the objective for a best case 13-7.

    Spell Selection:

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    Dragon Mage: Glory of Gold, Word of Iron
    MoCT: Lash, Awaken the Beast, Altered Sight
    Horror Champs: Hand of Heaven, Breath Weapon
    Harbinger: Scrying, Stars Align


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    Deployment Type: Battleline
    Secondary Objective: Secure Target (two objectives, you can see are little stacks of crates)

    Terrain (see pic below, from my left to right):
    Forest centrally, hill, forest on my side, forest opposite on his side, field centrally, hill on his side, ruins out of picture far right

    His Deployment (from my left to right):
    Slaughterers, Harbinger Fly Bus, Furies, Furies, Horrors behind, horrors in forest, Scourge behind, Crushers, Slaughterers

    (after turn 1 movement)

    My Deployment (from my left to right):
    Lancers in the corner, REavers, SGR, Dragon Mage, Wardens, Spears/BSB, SGR, SGR, Wardens, Reavers
    I dropped everything for first turn hoping to start chipping away at the Scourge and position to threaten the objectives

    Sea Dragon Host- Turn 1:
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    I moved my Wardens/Chariot Commander on the right and my Dragon Mage centrally up to threaten his approach to both objectives

    Magic: I got oaken throne off and word of iron on the Wardens on the right
    Shooting: Really lackluster turn between bad rolls and flukey wards I took 2 furies down

    Scourge Legions- Turn 1:

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    He moved up aggressively on my left
    Moved very little with the center except to turn the Scourge to prevent the Dragon Mage from flying out of LOS of the Fly Star
    Slaughterers on my right move forward aggressively around the hill

    Magic: The Dragon Mage takes a wound from hand of heaven

    Shooting: Nothing really

    Sea Dragon Host- Turn 2:

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    I bring my reavers on the left back
    My spears moved forward to get the MoCT in range of Lash on the Scourge
    The Dragon Mage pulls back threatening his advance and preventing the Furies from charging the SGR on the hiil
    The Wardens on the left turn and shift towards the objective to threaten his advance
    Reavers on the right shift out to shoot at the Slaughterers but stay out of charge range

    In this turn I learned something new, I hadn’t played against the new MR and I thought that it simply increased the casting cost of a spell against the target. In fact it decreases the casting roll and he stopped my cast matching my reduced roll exactly. If I’d known this before he rolled his dice I would have used my scepter of power, but I didn’t feel like pushing it because it was my mistake.
    I got Word of Iron up on the central Wardens again

    I kill 3 Furies from the forward unit, leaving 2 left
    I think I kill a Slaughterer from the unit on my right

    Scourge Legions- Turn 2:

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    He moves his Slaughterers forward aggressively on my left
    He shifts his Fly Star forward a bit
    He brings the Scourge closer to my left
    He moves his two Furies into the forest to threaten my bolters

    He does 3 wounds to my Chariot Commander w a Hand of Heaven

    Shooting: He kills 6 Spears w his Horrors

    Sea Dragon Host- Turn 3:

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    I saw an opportunity and the Wardens on my left made a charge into the Slaughterers that had pushed forward
    Dragon Mage shifts out to threaten countercharges if he brings the Fly Star into the Wardens while staying out range of the Scourge
    Spears reform and shift to threaten the Scourge’s advance
    Wardens on the right move onto the objective
    Reavers move out of danger
    Chariot Commander shifts (honestly I don’t know what I was doing there, I think I was worried about the Slaughterers on my right, with only one wound he was vulnerable)

    He stops lash on the Scourge, I get off altered sight and awaken the beast on the Flame Wardens healing both the Dragon Mage and Chariot Commander
    Shooting: Looking back at the pictures, I think I only killed one Fury, maybe a Slaughterer or two from the unit on my right

    Wardens take one casualty and crush the Slaughterers

    Scourge Legions- Turn 3:

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    (Before movement)

    Slaughterers on the right fail a charge into the Chariot Commander
    His 3 furies move to chaff my Wardens on the left
    His Fly Star and Scourge move up to threaten the Wardens and the Dragon Mage

    He failed a big hand of heaven, so I was able to stop the rest of his spells

    Shooting: Killed a few spearmen

    Sea Dragon Host- Turn 4:

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    I make my first mistake here and I charge the Lancers into the Furies. The root cause was that I thought the Fly Star was scoring and I figured I could jail break the lancers with a big overrun after killing the furies, get them out of LOS and preserve them for a Turn 5 or 6 objective contesting move. If I left them in the corner the Fly Star could easily box me out from the objective. They make the charge.
    The rest of my line just shuffles around a bit, the Scourge was still threatening the center of the field so I couldn’t advance on his lines
    I made a mistake here I’ll come back to

    I do something to buff the Wardens on my left, probably Awaken the Beast

    Shooting: I kill that last pesky fury

    I utter the apocryphal words, “Lancers suck” as I roll the dice and I manage to do just a single wound to the furies with my 6 elf attacks and 3 horse attacks. They hold and now I’m truly screwed on the left.

    Scourge Legions- Turn 4:

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    The Scourge goes into the Lancers with a corner clipping overrun into the Wardens (I couldn’t prevent this)
    The Fly Star goes into the Wardens
    His Slaughterers on my right charge my chariot commander

    I make my second mistake, although this one was less impactful, on dispel prioritization. He casts bubble scrying (which would cover his Flies and Scourge)with a low roll and I dispel it. This lets him get Stars Align on the Fly Star which truly spells doom for my Wardens. I should have done the reverse.

    Shooting: Nothing significant

    My Chariot Commander fluffs, takes a wound and loses combat fleeing from the Slaughterers who overrun into the flank of the Wardens.
    The Scourge predictably smokes the Lancers, overruns into the Wardens. That combined combat is a bloodbath. I can’t roll a Ward save, by the end I think 15 Wardens die, they flee and are run down by both units

    Sea Dragon Host- Turn 5:

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    At this point we realized we wouldn’t make Turn 6
    So I’d managed to lose nearly 1k points on my left and the objective there. So I decided I’d just go ahead and lose the objective on the right too…

    My reavers charge the flank of the Slaughterers
    My Dragon Mage has a charge on the nearer Horrors (need a 9 on the dice). She fails. This ended up being a crippling mistake.
    The Chariot Commander rallies, thankfully.

    My focus is the Wardens combat and I buff them accordingly

    With two bolters and a Reaver unit I fail to kill the two Furies that the Lancers failed to kill.

    The Reavers and Wardens manage to kill off the Slaughterers fortunately

    Scourge Legions- Turn 5:

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    My opponent marches his Crushers and Horrors forward, both into range of the objective
    He manages 1 wound on the chariot commander bringing him down to a single wound and netting my opponent 50% for him
    And with that the game ended

    Results and Thoughts on the Game:
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    So on points it was an 11-9 to my opponent (that damned fury cost me the 10-10)
    The last turn moves by my opponent netted him the objective making it a 14-6

    My mistakes:
    My mistakes in Turn 4 and 5 movement cost me first the win on the objective and then contesting it:
    • In Turn 4 I should have moved my Wardens forward to prevent him from getting within 6 of the objective
    • Failing the above, in Turn 5 I should have moved my Dragon Mage to block his horrors from marching in range of the objective
    I also should have just kept my lancers back, looking back on the battle and now knowing that Blight Flies are not scoring I think I could have engineered sneaking the lancers in on the last turn.

    Taking all these into account, a 13-7 (my original goal) was very much within my grasp. One more wound on furies and an easy Turn 5 move makes it a 10-10 at the very least.
    Overall, I was disappointed with this battle, I felt my shooting and magic really underperformed (on several occasions my opponent exactly matched my casting value, could have easily gone the other way). At the end of the day, keeping the Scourge out of meaningful combat was a good outcome, but he also was able to use that model to zone basically everything in my army. I feel that model is a little RPS and I’m looking forward to seeing the new DL book and how they adjust it.

    Tourney Wrap Up/List Assessment/Next Steps:
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    Placing and Stats:
    • I finished tied for 7th overall, my stretch goal was top 10, so I’m very pleased with this outcome!
    • Finished up the tourney with a 69 on battle points, which puts me 10th on battle
    • Average points per game, just under 14
    • I would have finished tied for 8th place if you removed the list submission bonus from the equation (a number of people from ETC teams didn’t submit until after the deadline)
    • Strength of Schedule: My opponents final overall placings were: 1, 13, 16, 26, 41. That’s an average of 19, which means on average I was playing top 20 players, I think that’s a fairly good strength of schedule

    Overall Play:
    • Writing battle reports gives you the benefit of an in-depth look at your quality of play. Looking back at my games I can see a two-three mistakes which could have netted me as much as 8 more battle points total (1 in Game 4 not giving the Zombies a flank on my Wardens and 7 in Game 5 if I’d managed to kill the fury and win the objective).
    • I would really like to finish more games, I finished on Turn 5 more often and never made it to Turn 6
    • I am pleased with my record on objectives, 3-1-1. Aside from a bonehead move on Game 5 I would have never lost the objective which I think is a key component of top tier play.

    Army Assessment:

    • Overall(A-): I’ve been playing this army with subtle variances since 2.0 dropped, so I grew very comfortable with it over 30+ games. I like how well-rounded it is, good in most phases, solid scoring, very hard to table this list in my opinion (and my record shows this, my worst outcome was a 6). However, I came up against two fairly RPS counters which I’ll get into in next steps.
    • OotFH Mage on Young Dragon (A): One of the cornerstones of the list, super durable, mobile, somewhat hitty against the right targets. I wanted to take a dragon even though I don’t think they’re top tier competitive and she did her part. I really like the alchemy flaming mechanic she brings to herself and the list. The change to molten copper really hurt this model a lot.
    • MoCT Commander BSB (A-): One of the other cornerstones of the list, the healing mechanic kept my Dragon Mage and Chariot Commander alive. The only reason for the A- is my build, I used the Sceptre of Power once and the GW had virtually no impact on any of my games. Future lists will see a 2+ save at bargain basement prices so I can fit in a talisman of the void or book of arcane mastery
    • Royal Huntsmen Commander on Lion Chariot (B): Mixed feelings about this guy, I think he’s a pretty points efficient choice at 450 pts and he threatens things the rest of the list doesn’t have good answers for. However, the 5++ didn’t cut it and those precious rider attacks suffer from really swingy to hit rolls.
    • Core Set up(B): Overall I was happy with this, but I think I can get more mileage out of my core:
      • Reavers w bows(A): Fast cav chaff, so good. I only regret the points spent on bows as they did a grand total of jack all
      • 29 Spears FC, Flaming(B-): Meh, I’m not convinced the big unit adds value. They ended up primarily being a bunker for the BSB only seeing combat in one game in which they got massacred. Too expensive for a bunker, I’m switching to units of 20
      • Lancers, Champ(C+): They did their job in two games and would have in a third if I’d played them right. They’re so awful in combat, I really think I’d rather have 20 spears going forward
    • 2x 20 [lexicon]Flame Wardens[/lexicon] FC Flaming Std (A+): The foundation of the list, these units were phenomenal and the [lexicon]magic[/lexicon] set up helped to mitigate their damage output issue. Having redundant units kept my battle plan and [lexicon]deployment[/lexicon] flexible. One unit of these will pretty much always make it into my list I think.
    • 3 [lexicon]Sea Guard[/lexicon] Reapers(B+): These guys reaped a fearsome tally: Demon [lexicon]prince[/lexicon], 2 mammoth hunters, 3 [lexicon]Vampire Knights[/lexicon], along with a number of other [lexicon]chaff[/lexicon]/[lexicon]R&F[/lexicon] troops. Personally, I think they’re more bang for your buck than 2 sloops, however, I am considering 1 sloop and 2 SGRs to add some mobility to the list

    Next Steps:

    So what’s next for the Sea Dragon Host, I’ve alluded to some build changes above and I do have a couple GTs (one team and one singles) coming up in the next 4 months.

    List Changes:
    At the end of the day, I don’t think you can go to a singles GT with such a terrible match up as ID is for this list. So, unfortunately, I think the OotFH on YD is going to see the shelf for a little while while I reintroduce a model that I think has a lot of potential, the Wizard Master on Young Dragon w Death Cheater. I haven’t settled on lore yet.

    I’m thinking I will try out 3 units of 20 spears and a reaver unit in core.

    After ceaseless persuasion on the part of my clubmates I am going to try out the sky sloop again. I haven’t had good luck with it in the past, but 2 SGRs and a Sloop maintains my shooting capability while adding one more mobile unit. This means I’ll finally need to actualize on the sloop model design I’ve been working on, more to come!

    So I hope you’ve all enjoyed this tournament report, the 2018 tourney season has been good to me so far and I’ll keep at it.

    Fight On!

    316 times read

Comments 7

  • Nemeroth -

    I really enjoyed your battle reports, there's a lot of themes common to DE as well so they're food for thought. You've actually inspired me to want to re-start an old abandoned project, pre-sundering Nagaryth style HBE.

    • Vespacian -

      Thanks! My long term goal is to have an army that can represent all 3 of the elf armies, so I’m glad you’re feeling the cross-elf theme.
      Send some pics of your project!

  • Borjnfer Wraith -

    Mistakes, mistakes! We all make them. First games and last games seem to have the most of them, so extra vigilance in these contests should be a masters goal.
    Never give up a good thing, 3 SGR is your best bet if that is all the missile fire you are counting on. Those and your characters LBs' should be able to do some decent long range damage.
    I love your 2 Phoenix units! Either as strong flank protection or secondary objective gatherers. I think giving them Banners of the Relentless Company would make them more powerful to jump on secondaries early and hold them longer.
    I would lose the Dragon and go with another Lion Chaiot or Lion Guard myself, but if your love is a Dragon go for the regular one and leave the puppy at home.
    Lastly, 25+ Spears are good. I prefer to give them the Banner of Discipline and stick my General in one and my BSB in the other.
    Characters; So many choices for us, I am thinking about using the Fleet Commader, what do you think of this Honor for the minimised rolls aspect? Is it worth it for your Army build?

    • Vespacian -

      The two FW units were my MVPs for sure!

      I’m actually toying around with the idea of no BSB, combined with divination and a big disc 10 bubble I could use those 50 pts.

      I think my issue with the big spear unit was 2 fold:
      1) as a bunker, I didn’t want to get the BSB into a lot of combats for fear of losing him
      2) they just die so fast! I feel like at nearly 500 pts they’re not a throwaway unit whereas I can afford to lose a 300 pt unit with the WBoR
      We’ll see how I fair.

      I am the dragon guy, it’s why I play the game! My next list is double dragon, stay tuned!

    • Borjnfer Wraith -

      I just wrote up a 4500 list with:
      2x30 Spear with champs, standards and Banners of Discipline: 2x475.
      I will put my Prince in one and my BSB in the other. The bearer’s unit may reroll failed Panic Tests.
      If the Battle Standard Bearer or the General is part of the bearer’s unit, it automatically passes all its Panic
      Tests instead.
      2x10 Archers with Musician:. 2x190.
      I will place these as screens for either my Flame Wardens or my Spear Units.

      2x 6 Lancers with Musicians: 2x311.
      Multi-purpose roles, put I plan to hold them in reserve on the flanks as long as possible.

      2x18 Flame Wardens with Full Command and Banners of the Relentless Company: 2x539.
      My main goal is to grap the secondary objectives with these units ASAP! If it is Breakthrough then I will run them and the Lancers up a flank supporting one another with the spear units in support. The lone Eagle will be crucial here to get them past any real threat to their inside flank in this mad dash for the points.

      2x Sea Guard Reapers: 2x180.

      1 Great Eagle: 100.

      Queens Cavalier Prince on foot. Spear of the Blazing Dawn. Longbow, Shield+Willows Ward. Dragonforged Armor+Protection of Dorac. Potion of Swiftness and Lucky Charm. 540 pts.

      MotCT BSB on foot. Great Weapon, Dragonforged Armor, Shield and Longbow. Banner enchantments; Navigators and Legion Standard. 470 pts.

      Sorry, no Dragons. I look forward to seeing your double-Dragon list.

  • Nesro -

    Great reports, Thank you very much!
    have you considered leaving the Royal Huntsmen at home? for 450 points, you could get a lot of Options - either a second monster with a Phoenix. a unit of Ryma Knights for some fast hard hitting options, some skirmishing Lion Guard. Or two Lion Chariots (on for each Flame Warden unit for some sweet counter charges)

    • Vespacian -

      I’m currently working on my new list, but the Chariot Commander will not be in it.

      I actually think 2 lion chariots is a really good trade for him, but I’m not going exactly that route.

      I really struggle with Ryma knights, I know they’re currently quite well favored, but against many many opponents they just die like nothing to shooting. In many games when I used them I felt like their only real value was threat area.