1250 Beasts of Chaos Vs Ossiarch Bonereapers: Head-on CollisionThe old woman's screams could be heard for miles. Kraggoth the Seer knew her voice, and knew it well. She was a sorcerer of the Old Way, a servant of the Eightpoints. She was little more than a slave to her demonic masters, but she had her uses. She and the beasts had an understanding - she provided wise counsel and profane blessings and, in turn, the beastmen of the Krondspine protected her.
But now eight foot tall golems of bone stood guard outside her house, deep in the verdant wilds of some distant, forgotten forest, while the servants of Nagash were inside, torturing her. The witch knew much of these lands and their secrets; there was much she might tell these boneshapers. It was for this reason, more than any sense of duty, that Kraggoth had ordered his herd to encircle the bone-constructs.
Not to save her, no. But to silence her, once and for all, before her pox-encrusted lips could speak the wrong secrets to the wrong undead host.
Another Path to Glory game! We've moved up to 1250 points, now, and my army is starting to take shape. The last two battles against the bonereapers have ended in humiliating defeat. Now, I hope, I have a chance to win. Here were our army lists. Note that, as this was a Path to Glory match, we have some special veteran abilities kicking around, as well as an extra artifact for me:Allherd Battle Regiment
Great Bray Shaman (General: Twistfray Cursebeast, Bleating Gnarlstaff, Spell: Wild Rampage)
Doombull (Brayblast Trumpet)
20 Gors w/Shields (Veterans: Exemplars of Valor)
10 Ungors w/Spears (Veterans: Wilderness Stalkers)
10 Ungors w/Spears
3 Bullgors w/Mansplitter Great Axes (Veterans: Toughened Hides)
2 Tuskgor Chariots
Grand Strategy: Desecrating Brayherd
Quest: Scout Fertile LandsPetrifex Elite Battle Regiment
Boneshaper (General: Aura of Sterility, Artisan's Key, Spell: Empower Nadrite Weapons)
3 Necropolis Stalkers (Veterans: +1 attack)
3 Immortis Guard (Veterans +1 attack)
3 Immortis Guard (Veterans +1 to wound)
2 Mortghast Harbingers
1 Gothizzar Harvester
Endless Spell: Soulstealer Carrion
Grand Strategy: Have Battleline alive at the end of the game (almost all of this is Battleline)
Quest: Hunt the Endless SpellMission, Terrain, and Deployment
I know, I know - I outnumber my opponent by a LOT, but I'm telling you that it doesn't make one lick of difference, as all of his guys are nigh-invulnerable and hit like a ton of bricks. When we rolled for mission, I was hoping for something with a bunch of objectives spread out that would be very hard for him to hold on to with his compact phalanx.
We got...Head-on Collision. We would deploy in table quarters and there would be three objectives: one in his DZ, one at board center, and one in mine. You got minimal points for holding your objective (1), modest point for taking the middle one (2), and big-time points for taking your opponent's (4). Plus a bonus point for each "Galletian Veterans" unit when they took an objective for the first time. Galletian Veteran is code for "Battleline unit with 4 or fewer wounds per model and no mount. Another way of putting this is my opponent had absolutely no Galletian Veteran units, which gave me a slight advantage. The problem, though, was I still had to run straight at him, more-or-less, to get the good points, and he would grind up anything I sent at him. Ugh.
The Bonereapers were defender, so this time (per advice from this forum), we made sure that the defender could set up the terrain. My opponent made sure to keep the center of the board clear of any obstruction. We had a forest on each flank, a house in the south and a house in the north (no garrisoning), and a long hill at about north-center edge. We have been skipping mysterious terrain, but for the purposes of the Bonereaper Quest, they needed an arcane piece of terrain. We rolled randomly and got the house in the north, which was smack dab in the middle of the bonereaper DZ, so they stood good odds of scoring it.
For deployment, the Bonereapers dropped their fairly standard phalanx - Immortis Guard on each end, Harbingers and Stalkers in the middle, Harvester behind. The Boneshaper was at the northern edge of this formation, behind the Immortis Guard. The idea, as always, was to keep them together and make them invincible, then (I presume) march up the board.
My deployment was more complex. I deployed first, but I knew how the bonereapers would deploy, as they'd done it to me twice now, and so I deployed with that picture in mind. I resolved that I would *not* ambush my Bullgors (GASP!), since it occurred to me that they would be better as a deterrent against enemy movement than an actual hammer - the *threat* of them charging was more useful than the charge itself. So, the Bullgors and Doombull deployed just in front of my herdstone (which was way back at board center south), the 20 Gors went to their right, and both units were screened by a unit of Ungors, the veteran ungors in the east in front of the Gors. My Bray Shaman general, the Cygor, and the Chariots would ambush. I wasn't sure what to do with the Chariots (and, overall, I'm pretty down on their performance right now), but I had a fiendish plan for my general and the Cygor.
DeploymentThe Beasts DeploymentBonebros Deploy!To Be Continued...
Post Merge: October 5, 2023, 10:18:56 PM
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I finished deploying first, so I had first turn. Now, I am very well aware that I can't reasonably destroy his army in a fair fight, so my general strategy here is to not try.
All I want to do is score objectives, and as I outnumber him in every respect, doing that won't be very hard. I shouldn't even need to fight him that much to do it.
This means my battle strategy has two prongs: delaying actions and diversionary tactics. The first of these general tactics is to screen my bullgors and doombull by running one group of ungors to stand atop the central objective. This means if he charges my ungors, he will have to face a countercharge from my heavy hitters. Next, I bring the chariots in along a very non-ambushy axis in the western forest near the south edge, well away from his force, but quick enough to move up the board. I also swing my veteran ungors up into the eastern forest--there's no way he can catch all of my things, so he'll have to choose *or* sit on his hands, and either choice will work in my favor.
BUT, I still have a battle tactic to achieve. Because of where his general was placed, that made him vulnerable. My battle tactic was "Reduce to Savagery" which is to destroy a unit that was the target of one of my special rituals of ruin. I used the Blood Taunt to draw the Boneshaper 7" to the north, away from his bodyguards (the taunt did 3 mortal wounds to my Bray Shaman, which hurt). Then, with him thusly exposed, I ambushed both my general and the Cygor in the northern edge of the board. I used the Bleating Gnarlstaff to do a couple mortal wounds to a couple different units clustered near that northern hill (yay, I remembered!). Then, my shaman gave the giant cyclops an All-Out Attack command and then the big guy hurled his boulder. It sailed, end-over-end in a graceful arc, and smashed down on the boneshaper, killing the bastard instantly. Battle Tactic achieved, enemy general slain, nasty endless spell headed off, and, perhaps most importantly, NO MORE HEALING for the undead army. Or, at least, less so.
All in all, I scored 3 points on objectives, 2 bonus points for my battleline infantry doing the taking, and 2 points for the smooshed boneshaper, for a whopping 7 point first turn!
Top of Turn 1Hey look! Stupid Chariots doing Stupid Stuff!Obvious trap is obviousSURPRISE GIANT!Where the Boneshaper walked, the grass withered and died. Though Kraggoth knew that rage and disgust roiled inside its desiccated soul, it gave no sign. It's eyes were cold, calculating. It was utterly unafraid of Kraggoth, whom by comparison must look haggard and weak.
The boneshaper's voice was like dust being swept across a barren floor. "If you believe my legions will be distracted by this paltry ruse, you are incorrect."
"This is no diversion, dead thing. I am going to kill you," Kraggoth growled.
The Boneshaper rose to its full height - a foot or more taller than the Bray Shaman. "If that is the case, you should not have come alone."
Kraggoth permitted himself a vicious grin. "Who said I was alone?"
Behind him, the trees parted, and the towering form of Topha the Blessed emerged, great boulder already in hand.
If the Boneshaper was afraid, it gave no sign, but then again it didn't have much time. Before it could utter a command to its legions, the creature vanished beneath the titanic bulk of the cygor's boulder, dirt and bonedust flying up in the air.
"That was for the first herd of mine you slaughtered," Kraggoth said. "I look forward to paying you back for the second one."
In the bottom of Turn 1, the Bonereapers seemed stymied, which was just what I was hoping. The bulk of their force pulled back a couple inches, clustering close to the northwest objective, while one group of Immortis Guard charged the Cygor. The cygor tried to smash them with a boulder on the way in, but missed. It survived the first salvo of attacks, even with their veteran ability active, but then choked on its own counter attack, and then the Immortis Guard activated their cursed ability to attack twice
once per game and finished the poor blighter off. This scored them their Battle Tactic (an Eye for and Eye), scoring them a total of 3 points for the turn - 1 on objectives and 2 for the battle tactic.
Bottom of Turn 1Front Lines remain basically unchangedThere used to be a Cygor here.Turn 1 Score
Bonereapers: 3Turn 2
I won the priority roll on a tie. My battle tactic this turn was Aid of the Wild, which meant putting 2 of my units in cover which, given the forests, would be easy enough.
My first order of business was to protect my warlord, who was grievously exposed up there with no more giant cyclops to protect him. So, Kraggoth hiked up his skirts and ran for the hills, heading into the woods, where the ungors moved up and blocked for him. The doombull also blew the whistle (the Brayblast Trumpet) and in came another 10 gors to likewise shield Kraggoth. I got off a Warping Curse on the Immortis Guard who had come after me, too, and killed one with a very solid 5-6 mortal wounds done at a cost of another wound to Kraggoth (who had healed himself up in the last hero phase with a Heroic Recovery). Oh, and I forget all about the Bleating Gnarlstaff again.
In the west, the chariots moved up cautiously, not quite in the forest and mostly hugging the board edge. I have not, as of yet, figured out how to use chariots or what they are good at, and my current suspicion is that they aren't much good at anything, but more on that later. In the center, my screen and my hammers moved up ever so slightly, restricting Bonereaper movement even more.
I have the center objective and my home objective as well as the battle tactic (Bray Shaman and Ungors in the woods), but no bonus points for taking any objectives, for a very solid 5 point turn. Top of Turn 2Kraggoth scurried behind his minions for safetyChariots do stupid chariot stuffThe ungors bleated in victory as the imposing line of bone constructs fell back before their mighty advance. With the bullgors and the mighty doombull behind them, they felt invincible!
Kraggoth, from his position in the forest, knew better. He didn't care though - he didn't care if the ungors were slain, or if more of Maygog's moronic bullgors were cut apart by nadrite blades. All they needed to do was get to that shack. Five seconds is all it would take.
In the bottom of turn 2, the Bonereapers lined up for a charge on my ungor screen but...hesitated. What if I charged him back? Yes, yes - what *if?* That was, more or less, my entire plan right there. They stood there and hoped for the double turn.
Meanwhile, the other group of Immortis Guard ran off into the woods and, using their two rounds of attacking (and, god, is that AWFUL to endure), crushed both chariots with no damage in return. That might be the last time I bother fielding chariots, honestly. If they aren't going to be fast and aren't going to be durable and ALSO aren't that great on the charge (referring to my last outing with then), why bother?
Anyway, the battle tactic they chose (Head to Head) was unachievable, since they don't have any battleline infantry, and so all they scored was the 1 point off their home objective.
Bottom of Turn 2The Immortis Guard go looking for bone donationsTurn 2 Score