Monday, 29 February 2016

Kings of February Tournament Report

Kings of February Tournament Report

Tas Stacey

The Westhaven Militia in all their unpainted glory. I’ve started painting the Foot Guard Horde and the Knights, but it’s going to take a while to finish eh. Hopefully I’ll get it all done in the next 3-4 months.


Back Row: Knights Regiment, Steam Tank (counts as Beast of War with light ballista), Knights Regiment, Cannon, Siege Artillery.
Middle Row: Foot Guard Horde (with Brew of Strength), Wizard (with Bane Chant), General on a Winged Beast (with Ensorcelled Armour), Arquebusier Horde (with Brew of Keen-eyeness).
Front Row: Mounted Scout Troop (with carbines), The Captain (mounted), Mounted Scout Troop (with carbines)

Background

This was my first Kings of War tournament, in fact my first wargaming tournament ever. I’ve been a gamer for close to two decades now (mostly TRPGs like Dungeons & Dragons, MtG, boardgames, etc). I’ve always been interested in miniature wargaming, but the barriers to entry in terms of monetary cost and time were just too high to justify for me.


I got into KoW after a mate (Oldy) introduced it to me at Cancon. He convinced me (it wasn’t very hard tbh) that this game was The One. I managed to pick up an old GW Empire army secondhand, based it up for KoW, and played 3 games over February. The tournament was held at Three D6 in Tuggeranong, a great FLGS where I play KoW on thursday nights. We had 10 people in the tournament, 2000 points, 3 rounds Swiss.


There were some gorgeously painted armies there:


I voted for these wood elves as best painted.




Game 1

I was up against a guy called Mark and his elves. I forgot to take a picture of his list, but it went something like:
  • Silverbreeze Cav Troop x 2
  • Sea Guard Horde
  • Palace Guard Troop
  • Stormwind Cav Regiment
  • Dragon Kindred Lord x 2
  • Drakon Rider Horde
  • Mage


We were playing the Invade! scenario, and deployed like this:


I didn’t really have a realistic plan at this point. I should have pointed all my war machines and rifles at the drakon riders and dragons, but instead I focused on the Sea Guard (a hybrid archer/spear unit) in the centre. I sort of thought I could roll his Silverbreeze cav on my left, crunch the centre with my Steam Tank, and then pivot around to take the rest of his stuff. Yeah. I don’t know why I thought my Movement 5 & 7 units could outmaneuver his Movement 10 flyers, let's just say I was optimistic.


My first turn went great I thought, I wavered one of his Silverbreeze Cav Troops, and routed his Stormwind Cav Regiment. I had my General on a Griffon with a defended flank, and my Foot Guard Horde ready to charge across the centre line. The situation at the end of my first turn looked like this:


But this was where I made a crucial mistake. I held my knight regiment on my right flank back. The idea was to use them as a second line of defence, charging anything that tried to flank or rear charge my General or Foot Guard Horde.


Instead what happened was my knights in the back corner were charged by both his Dragon and his Drakon Rider Horde. Together they routed my Knights in one turn, and then did a 180 pivot. All of a sudden I had two massive units with a rear charge on half of my army. And his other dragon charged my Arquebusier Horde, disrupting them. I was cooked mate.


I fought on, but caught between his Sea Guard Phalanx at the front and 2 dragons + Drakon Riders behind, Mark just picked me apart. I got my Beast of War, one Mounted Scouts Troop and The Captain into the scoring zone, vs his Sea Guard Horde, 2 Dragons & Drakon Riders. 17 - 3 loss.


It was a fun match, and Mark got my overall vote for sportsmanship. He helped me quite a bit with the rules, and was a dude to play against. I still don’t know how I’m supposed to deal with units like Dragons, Elohi, Drakon Riders etc (with my Kingdoms of Men army at least). Certainly not 3 of them at once. I guess if I engaged one with my Beast of War, tagged the other with my war machines and rifles simultaneously, and threw chaff at the third, I ~might~ be able to take one out. But that seems like a real long shot to be honest.

Game 2

This game was Dominate!, against Tony’s Ogres.


Tony’s list was something like:
  • Berserker Braves Regiment
  • Berserker Braves Horde
  • Bomers Horde x 3
  • Warlock x 4
  • Red Goblin Blaster x 2
  • Giant


This one was going to be an uphill struggle for me right from the get go:


In the Dominate! scenario, you only score points for units that are completely within a 12” radius circle in the very centre of the board. But as you can see, there was a piece of unpassable terrain right in the centre, taking up like half of the scoring zone. Plus a couple of pieces of unpassable terrain just outside the scoring zone. It was going to be extremely difficult for me to fit my infantry hordes into there. Still, I gave it a shot.


I sent a Regiment of Knights and a Troop of Scouts to tackle his Giant on my left flank. I sent my other Scout Troop to try and slow down his two Goblin Blaster carts on the right, and sort of moved everything else up the middle, trying to crowd out as much of the scoring zone as possible.


The giant tore through my knights and scouts. My Steam Tank and General got into it in the middle, and took out a few units. But his 4 warlocks had 48 Fireball rolls between them, which was just a fkn devastating thing to try and deal with at close range.


By the end I had my Beast of War, Captain, and Wizard in the scoring zone, vs all his warlocks, one of his Boomers, and both of his Berserker Braves units. Another 17 -3 loss.

Game 3

After lunch it was time for the last game, against Luke (? I think, I was pretty saturated with new names by this point) and his Empire of Dust army.


His list (excluding magic items) was:
  • Skeleton Crossbowmen Regiment x 2
  • Mummies Troop x 2
  • Enslaved Guardians Regiment x 2
  • Swarm Regiment
  • Skeleton Cavalry Troop x 2
  • Bone Giant
  • Reanimated Behemoth
  • Pharaoh x 2


We played the Pillage! scenario. If the terrain was all against me in Game 2, it was all in my favour Game 3.


We had to fight to control those 6 green circle objectives, and there was a nice big killing field right in the middle for my artillery and rifles to cover.


I won the roll to go first, moved up and took the high ground, and my shooters just did their thing. Basically everything worked for me this game. My mounted scouts were able to force nerve tests with their carbines, my war machines pummelled his Behemoth and Giant, I got units into his two crossbow units by turn 2, while my Foot Guard horde and Steam Tank just marched up the centre.


I was able to replicate the move that sunk me in Game 1, when my Knights regiments on both flanks were able to penetrate deep, rout a unit, and then reform facing the flanks or rear of the bulk of his army.


And that was pretty much it. His Pharaohs lasted until the end (man they are practically impossible to kill. Like for reals), but the rest of his units were routed, and I controlled all 6 objective markers. 20 - 0 win for me.


I felt bad for Luke, his list was just not built for this scenario and terrain. Because we had to be so spread out to compete for so many objectives, he wasn’t able to pull off any flank charge surge shenanigans. And his most durable units (the Pharaohs) don’t count when it comes to controlling objectives (because they are individuals). If we were playing Loot! or Dominate!, he would have had a much easier time I think.

Conclusion

I finished the tournament 7th out of 10. Really happy with that result for my first competitive outing. I used my Flying General, Mounted Scouts, and Steam Tank much better than I have in my first few games. My rifle horde hits like a truck, but I’m thinking about swapping the +1 to hit magic item for the +12” range one. It is just too hard to get them to a position where they can be effective without being disrupted so quickly by flyers. I would also like to squeeze Scrying Gem back into my list, and maybe beef up my knights with pathfinder, crushing strength, or extra speed.


But overall I’m actually pretty happy with my list. I just need to get a bit more experience with dealing with them pesky flyers and I’ll be laughing I reckon. Kings of War is a great game, and Three D6 throws a great little tournament. I’ll definitely be at the next one!

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