Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Wrecking Ball: Warriors of Chaos vs Ogre Kingdoms

Turn Up The Hype!
It's All Skype Fight Night!

Good evening and welcome, Fantasy Fans! I, General Kraken, shall be writing in the plainclothes of normal text.

Why hello again; I, Kasfunatu, shall be writing in unsubtle bold.

Very little fancy for tonight's match, a straightforward rough-and-tumble throwdown pitching a horde of ogres against a Tzeentchian warband. But just to give it that distinctive Woffboot flavour, we'll be using Blind Deployment and Secret Objectives!

I really liked the blind deployment and made me reminisce over setting up behind screens of cardboard boxes. Can we do this again?




Your usual, General Kraken? A pint of Chaos Warriors and a packet of chariots? Why thanks, don't mind if I do.

Mark of Tzeentch, a Chaos Lord: Mark of Tzeentch, Hellfire Sword, Scaled Skin, Soul Feeder, Talisman of Endurance, Disc of Tzeentch
Burnward the Crisp, a sorceror: Level 1 Lore of Fire (Fireball), Dispel Scroll
Withnails Iniseyes, an exalted battle standard bearer: Talisman of Preservation

18 Chaos Warriors - Shields, Gleaming Pennant
15 Chaos Marauders - Flails
A Chaos Chariot

A Gorebeast Chariot with Mark of Tzeentch
A Warshrine, similarly marked

A Chaos Spawn, same mark again

Oh my boys, my boys, we're at the end of an age!

I hear that a disc-riding combat monster is a decent goer for WoCs, so I reckoned I'd give that a go. I didn't know who I'd be fighting when I chose the list, and although I was mostly horrified to hear it would be Ogres, that Hellfire Sword was a great pick to bring against the multi-wound monster men.

Mind you, the lord would have to do a lot of heavy lifting with it to earn his points back, and I'd be running very light on magic. And most of my guys weren't really tooled for bear (lucky I'd be fighting Ogres, then), so I wasn't looking forward to combat as much as I might usually do. All the same,  I reckoned with a bit of luck, I'd got some tough stuff to hit the ogres with.


Graznak, Butcher Lvl 2 (beasts): General, gold sigil sword, dispel scroll  - 175
Fuj, Bruiser - BSB, Dragonhide banner, heavy armour, brace of pistols  - 194
Lummo, Butcher Lvl 2 (maw): hellheart, ironfist - 188

15 Ogres - Full command and lookout gnoblar with ironfists - 515
5 Belchers - Musician - 225
1 Ironblaster - 170
1 Rhinox - Champion, heavy armour, ironfist, brace of pistols - 131

Talk about yer monstrous regiment. I didn't think I could proxy this fully, but I managed with the tactical use of terminators. For which I'd doubtless pay later. 

The list was one of a pool of unused 1600pt lists that we rolled randomly against and was built not knowing who it was going to face. I really like playing this way for random friendlies.

If you want beasts, you need a second butcher, and we are ogres, so we need a bsb... so the character choices were made quite quickly. The gut butcher cast some spells, but only when I had spare dice and their effect had no bearing on the game; probably could have been lvl1.

I had never tried the dragonhide banner before so wanted to try that; and it made sense to be in a horde; it may suit guts better, but I then had to sacrifice the blaster if I wanted a horde, so went with bulls... I wanted my moving cannon.... I did not move it all game!

I do like the single rhinox champion and against this list it proved a pivotal (lucky) choice in one combat.

The hellheart is a given (but was not actually used).

With hindsight/foresight and knowing my enemy list, I would have dropped a few things and squeezed in a second rhinox. Although would not favour that as a general option.


Battle Report

The battlefield was as swampy as you'd expect. I was still feeling like playing about with rivers. So one side got a handy island in their deployment, but one crowded with mysterious woods and surrounded by a mysterious river. Yes, a good advantage for defence, but you'd be risking whatever random properties the terrain might hold by taking it.

On the other side, a hefty ruined tower and some reasonable hills and buildings to use as cover on the way over.

Deploying blind, I thought I'd stick my battleline in a fairly tight pack, then try and get them all in at once on the foe. Ultra-fast chaos lord on the right to whip off ahead and start flanking, spawn in the middle for comedy value. And I'd picked a secret objective from the list (see this page for selections, see if you can guess what I'd gone with) that I reckoned was pretty surefire!

Here's the actual kitchen floor field, with handy lines photoshopped on for board edges. Wish I could do that for reals without incurring the intense displeasure of Mrs Kraken.

An interesting choice, but I figured that the river and forests would provide some protection for my shooty units. With the bridge nicely Rhinox sized it dictated which flank my horde was going to be setup on. 

The final battlelines! As ever, not quite as the field was in real life. Not that I'm knocking Battle Chronicler, it's awesome. I just wish it had images of all my actual terrain pieces. Most inconvenient.

That's not bad, considering we did not know deployment and both wanted to be in combat quick it was nice to not to have think about slogging across the diagonal of the board.

I got first turn. Dammit. Now my Lord was staring into the face of all the ogres in the world, and they weren't even going to be near enough to charge early.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 1

Well, no time like the present to get stuck in. Everything romped forward, ready for the off. The map makes this look distinctly spurious, but there was just space for the Disc Lord to whisk himself into the flank of the ogre horde, thanks to the slant on their deployment. They also were a bit further from the edge of the board than they look here. Honest! I swear I measured it and everything!

I did have the option of Fulminating Flame Cage for my sorceror, but I'd decided to stick with a plain old fireball. With just one spell to cast, I could throw plenty of dice at it and hopefully do a bit of damage.

So I did just that, flinging a full-power fireball at the Rhinox. It got dispel scrolled, which meant Kas had a heap of dice to keep my shrine shenanigans under control. But it still felt like a good start.

Turn 1 and I have already used my dispel.... well it is use it or lose it I suppose; and once I was in combat he could not fireball me... I just needed to get there!

Ogre Kingdoms Turn 1

The ogres need an 11 to charge, but want to move forward: so risk it; and as expected: fail, moving forward just 6.

The Rhinox restrained frenzy, but decided a charge on the gorebeast was better than getting charged and so went for it anyway, making it in.

Magic phase was a high roll, Wyssan's was dispelled which allowed the Curse of Anraheir onto the warriors.

Hmm. That wasn't good, but I felt that they'd not be in combat before he'd have to cast it again. And I certainly didn't want the Rhinox being any tougher or stronger than it already was, thanks!

The belchers shoot the spawn, wiping it off the board, but without causing any form of panic; which was of course my hope.

The iron blaster hits the warshrine but Tzeentch smiles on the shrine and it magically escapes harm.

Yay! 3+ Ward Save!

In combat the rhinox hurts the gorebeast, but it holds.

This was a lot closer than I was anticipating! I fully thought I'd be gone in a turn from this brute. But the impact hits were a whiffle and my charioteers even managed to dent the Champion rider. I lost by two, but with the BSB nearby, I passed on the rerolled break test.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 2

The Marauders gleefully leapt into combat spinning their flails up.

Well that actually helped. Now the marauder champion has to challenge and my rhinox champion has to accept... I know who my money is on!

Oh balls, I didn't think that through. I hadn't quite got my head round the fact that a single model unit could be a champion. More of a lone character, really.

To further compound my woes, I decided to move the Chaos Warriors, Anraheir time-of-the-month or not. Two inches backwards (I'd never make a charge), just to stack the odds against the ogre rush.

This clever decision instantly removed seven warriors from the unit, as well as taking a wound from the sorceror. At least they didn't panic!

The chariot pulled further back, hoping for a countercharge in due course. And I found I'd angled my Lord so poorly he couldn't see anything to charge at. Good job he was carrying all those points with him, then.

Well, the magic phase saw another giant fireball being dispelled irresistably, then a bit of minor boostage from the shrine. A bonus attack for the Chaos Sorceror (I was hoping for more armour or ward, given he was already wounded) and some extra initiative for the Marauder Champion, who'd need all he could get in his forthcoming deathmatch.

Yep, money safe... 

Losing four of his one wounds, the Marauder didn't make the most impressive beginning to his challenge career. Luckily, although nobody else hurt the Rhinox this round, it was still a draw thanks to flanks, charges and so on. Champion the Rhinox Rider may be, but musician he certainly wasn't, so I managed a win! Not that it shifted him anywhere, mind, but at least it soothed his frenzy.

Ogre Kingdoms Turn 2

Charging the depleted warriors from this distance was an easier proposition and the horde crash in.

The belchers brave the river which turns out to be a boiling flood but don't stay in the hot water long enough to be hurt by it.

Concentrating fire on the warshrine the 5 belcher cannons and the ironblaster fail to wound.

Yay! 3+ Ward Save!

The rhinox is hurt but chomps and stomps on several of the squisy marauders. 

Hurt pretty badly, in fact - down to its last wound thanks to the Gorebeast and charioteers. Not that I remotely make up against the damage done to the marauder unit, but it ends up being a small win for the Rhinox.

The gorebeast runs?! Awesome.

Yes. Awesome. I'm sure those Marauders with their flail-butts will soon whittle it down.

The ogre horde makes quick work of the warriors, and run them down crashing into the the chariot as they give chase.

Ojdå, as the Swedish say. 'Oh dear' in English. Even though the sorceror pulls a handy tie with the lightning-fast Butcher General in his challenge, and even though the warriors wipe out one whole ogre, I still lose by eight clean points. S6 impact hits? Leaves a dent, I can tell you.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 3

Well, time for the countercharge. Both Lord and Warshrine hit the Bull Horde from back and sides, with the Gorebeast slacker pulling up its headlong flight just behind.

A mere ogre champion is all Kas feels he can sacrifice to my Lord's challenge. Wuss. The chariot gets clobbered by a combination of impact hits and Bruiser punches, but at least takes an ogre out with it first (lucky horse kicks). And the Warshrine takes a nick from the Butcher, but also dents another ogre in the process.

And then the challenge. I know Kas isn't looking forward to this - multiple wounds from the Hellfire Sword could spell a lot of overkill.

But this is me! Master of Fate and Dice, and there is no overkill. In fact, there is no kill. Four hits, no wounds, and I even have to make an (easy) armour save in return. We've lost.

Wow that was unlucky attack from the lord, and then to break too... ouch!

Yeah, I'm not even going to talk about that. At least the shrine stays put. Predictably, the Rhinox shrugs off the marauder hits (of which at least there are many! Good boys, trying their best) before murdering all but three of them. Off they go.

Winning the combat and the ogres turn to face the shrine. And with the marauders running too, the rhinox does the same.

Ogre Kingdoms Turn 3

The charging rhinox fails to hurt the shrine, but manages to survive with its one wound.

The ironblaster hits the gorebeast spot on and the gorebeast is squashed by the cannon fire.

Wyssan's cast this time and the ogres fare ok against the shrine, although it makes every save.... and another ogre falls. 

Yay! 3+ Ward Saves! I think I made something like eight of them, which is impressively impassive of it. I tried my best to finish the Rhinox, and nearly made it before Kas reminded me that chariots have certain rules, you know? And one of them is that bearers have to attack to the front. I swear I will read the chariot page in the rulebook one day. Just not today.

That said, with the extra charge, flank and banners the win is for the horde, and the shrine breaks. 

The horde are unable to catch it, but the rhinox chases after and brings the blimp to the ground.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 4

Quick go!

Taking that as an order, my Chaos Lord decides not to rally and exits the table, stage right. The Marauders run desperately away from the Rhinox, oblivious to the cannon-armed ogre line in front of them.

Ogre Kingdoms Turn 4

Nothing charges, they just surround the marauders and watch as the belchers unleash.

Having fired a few decent volleys they got over excited and did not pack the barrels as tightly, and roll badly on the number of shots. Still they manage to kill 2 of the 3 marauders, leaving just the banner.... then we remember that they were broken in combat so the banner disappears.

Result: clean board.

Warriors of Chaos Turn 5

What do you mean, 'that's it'?


1950 vs 65 (assuming that the boast was a 100vp)

They are indeed! As it turned out, we'd both selected 'Hold Out' as our secret boast. Did you guess it? Obviously I'd done this ever so slightly less well than Kas had. But it was close - it was just the width of the Bull Ogre Horde that stole into my deployment zone to deprive me of the points, and I'm pretty sure Kas wasn't trying to do that deliberately.

Nope, I'd forgotten about the boast until after the game!


I had decided to ignore the very killy, maneuverable, and protected lord, and was lucky that he failed to wound me, then broke, then continued to run... unexpected! I was lucky.

Yeah, thanks Tzeentch. Some god of unpredictable fate you turned out to be.

O Hindsight, thou art a dubious benefit. But with it, the Lord would actually have been better sticking nearer my lines to charge in with the others, or even nipping out ahead to either redirect or even blunt the ogre charge.

With his 1+ armour save and 4+ ward, it would have been a reasonable prospect. The ogre pack does pump out a lot of attacks, but they're curiously gentle (other than the awful impact hits, which give us our titular Miley Cyrus reference). Or so S4 feels to my chaos armour, anyway. I'd take the Hellfire Sword again, regardless, because I'd quite like to see what it does one day.

I certainly shouldn't have moved the Warriors. That was foolish. And I didn't think the Marauder charge through, although I'm glad I did it. A poor panic test and I'd have shunted it out into the path of the Bulls, which would have changed the flow of the battle a lot.

Other forgetteries: I should have remembered the Gleaming Pennant the Warriors had, and also used the 4+ Ward Save BSB to make the challenge against the Bulls instead of the wounded Sorceror. Meh. Too late now!

The shrine worked well again. I agree with Kraken: always make your shrine Tzeentchian.

Yay! 3+ Ward Saves!

I was surprised how the rhinox ended up... I expected him to hit harder than he did, and die quicker than he did. Can't complain mind.

I had never used the dragonhide banner before: rerolling 1s only when you charge (did not sound great)... based on a horde (who only successfully charged twice), I have changed my mind... it was well worth it. Ok I would not take on a small unit, but I might consider on a unit of 8 now.

Yes, that thing is a bitch! And makes me mutter into my beard about the poor choice of banners the WoC list presents. Where is my Blasted Standard of yesteryear? Where is the -1 Ld, fear-causing banner? Passed like rain on the mountain, like a wind in the meadow, I expect. Bloody Tolkein, going around taking my toys away.

I don't like chariots, I can't use them, and have them had them used to great effect on me; and so, was happy to neutralise their charges this game.

I do like chariots, although I couldn't say I generally use them brilliantly. The chaos ones are extremely effective and very tough, but still don't quite have the punch I think they do. They should support charges, not do them alone. I was determined not to make that mistake again in this game, and sure enough, I didn't get the chance to.


  1. Well that was brutally unlucky and brutally brutal. I do hope Kraken hasn't used up all the bad dice rolls before our next game.

    Good report, it's not often we see Chaos Warriors as the close-combat underdogs (makes a change from arrows, eh?).

    And for my own understanding of the rules:
    - did you march with your Curse of Anraheir'd Warriors? Just walking alone doesn't trigger a Dangerous Terrain test (sorry if that means you lost seven warriors for no reason)

    - does the Rhinox+Champion count as one model (and therefore, the Marauders wouldn't have been able to attack it during the challenge - not that they did anything).

    That Dragonhide Banner does look good (the ASL effect would be wasted if carried by a unit of Ironguts, I suppose, since they'd probably still lose out on Initiative, but the re-rolling 1s is great).

    1. Cursed: walked backed... damn....

      Rhinox+Champion.. is one model and so the whole thing fights in the one challenge.

      Banner... you are right, less good. But ASL does not then go to initiative. All ASL fight at same time (I believe)

    2. You're quite right: ASL on both sides means everyone strikes at the same time - so it does make a nice leveller for the Guts with their lousy Initiative.

      Good banner - that could really ruin the plans of some elite elves there.

    3. I'm sure they didn't die in vain. There is some corner of my kitchen floor that is forever the Chaos Wastes (and that's not just because I don't clean it often enough).

      Having those seven back (plus the extra wound on the sorceror) might have made a small difference - I'd have had a rank or two extra and a couple of extra supporting attacks. So I might have lost by point or two less and had a better shot at not running, but I suspect it would have been against the odds all the same. Funnily, though, I never felt like an underdog in close combat (even if I was) - the ogres swung it more by weight of numbers and getting the charge. If I'd got in first, I'd give good odds the results would have gone the other way!

      Wouldn't worry about my luck changing for the next match. I've been waiting for that to happen for about, oo, thirty eight years now. The corner is yet to be turned.

  2. P.S. I read the entire battle report with Miley Cyrus' Wrecking Ball on repeat.

    I can thoroughly recommend the experience.