Monday, November 29, 2010

Monday, November 22, 2010

Renegade Imperial Guard Veteran/Command Squad Conversions

I've recently been converting some Renegade Imperial Guardsmen to use as veterans and command squad members for my army. I've decided that instead of doing the cliched chaos renegades, that my Renegade Imperial Guard army will have been condemned by Imperial authorities because of illegal and heretical contact with aliens and alien technology. The leader of the army was supported in his rebellion by a cult dedicated to learning about and using forbidden alien technology. And, most heretical of all, they are even rumored to be studying alien races in an attempt to improve humanity, perhaps even through genetic engineering, thus tainting pure human DNA with that of filthy xenos.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Grismeire Valley Campaign Turn 3 - Fate of the Ogres Challenge Game

The Bretonnian forces fighting in the Grismeire Valley had long been expecting some assistance from a band of Ogre mercenaries in the area. Their high Elf allies assured the Bretonnian command that the Ogres had been hired to assist in the campaign. Yet, so far the Ogres had done nothing but eat their way across the valley. Frederic Theobold, sensing the campaign was at a critical point, needed the Ogres to make their move. He sent a small force to find the Ogre encampment and convince their leader that it was time for the Ogres to earn their pay.

After a long day of marching, the Bretonnian force located the Ogre camp. As it was getting late, the Bretonnians made camp themselves, intending to meet with the Ogres first thing the next morning. They didn't know that The Master of the undead invaders had sent a force to make sure the Ogres would stay out of the campaign. In the dead of night, the undead approached the camp silently, zombies and skeletons rising from the ground in the middle of the camp. Driven on by the will of their Vampire leader, the undead automatons murdered the Ogres in their sleep, putting an end to the threat of the Ogre mercenaries.

As dawn broke the undead force, aware of the nearby Bretonnian camp, arrayed themselves for battle. Not expecting any trouble, the Bretonnians broke camp and approached the Ogre camp unprepared for a fight. Only too late did they see the army of undeath arrayed against them.

The Undead were deployed just to the right of the Ogre camp in a solid battle line consisting of, from left to right, Grave Guard, Zombies, Grave Guard with Great Weapons, and Skeletons with Spears. Behind the line was a unit of Skeletons with spears, containing two Necromancers and the Vampire leading the force. With the leftmost unit of Grave Guard was a Wight King bearing the army standard.

The Bretonnians were not well deployed. The mass of their infantry was clustered up far to the Vampire Count army's left, along with some questing knights, on the outskirts of the Ogre camp. Just across the field from the undead army, but more spread out, were two units of Knights, some peasant bowmen, and a unit of Pegasus Knights.
In the mission we played, each player had to roll for each unit to determine which third of their deployment zone the unit was required to deploy in. As the Vampire count player, I ended up with my entire army deployed in the center, while the Bretonnian player got stuck putting all his men at arms to his far right.

Seeing the predicament they had stumbled into, the Bretonnians wisely opted to pause to pray to the Lady of the Lake for deliverance. The undead took the time to reposition their line, anchoring their flanks between some large boulders on the left on a massive pit on the right. Surrounded by the aura of death created by the long night of slaughter, the winds of magic flowed strong from the Vampire. She raised more and more of the long dead from the ground, easily more than doubling the size of her zombie regiment. Her army was growing in strength every minute.

The Bretonnians were cautious in the face of this sudden threat. Their Knights would not charge off blindly, but would wait for their infantry support to make its way around the edge of the camp and onto the battlefield. The Pegasus Knights did, however, fly forward to begin making their way around into the read of the vampire line. The Bretonnian Prophetess proved to not be as lucky with the winds of magic this day. Perhaps overwhelmed by the power drawn by so much death, she suffered a catastrophic backlash of magical energy that killed nearly a third of the massive horde of men at arms around her.

The Vampire mostly held, biding her time, knowing that her army only grew stronger as the Bretonnians took time to rearrange their army. Through her necromantic magics, she continued to increase the size of her zombie regiment, which was now four times its starting strength. She, and the necromancers accompanying her, were forced out of the skeleton regiment, which turn to its right to guard the leaders of the army from the pesky Pegasus Knights. Meanwhile, the Questing Knights and another unit of Knights began making their way around the boulders that anchored the right flank of the undead army.

Denied the chance to take out the leaders of the undead army, the Pegasus Knights instead charged into the rear of the Skeleton regiment on the undead right flank, just as a full unit of Knights with the army standard bearer charged their front. The combat was swift and brutal, the surrounded and outclassed Skeletons were scythed down or crumbled to pieces as their hold on unlife was broken by the thunderous charge of the Knights. Back to the left flank, the Questing Knights held their position, wary of charging the what seemed to be an endless, and ever increasing, sea of zombies. The other unit of Knights turned around and headed back around the front size of the boulders, just as the Bretonnian Infantry was finally getting into position.

Pulling back on their reins, the Knights on the undead right barely had time to regroup and reform after wiping out the Skeletons before the nearby Grave Guard charged them. The Pegasus Knights turned around to face towards the Vampire and Necromancers, but their Skeleton bodyguard again blocked an attack. The Grave Guard and Zombies on the left flank turned to face the Knights and Questing Knights who threatened their flanks. Meanwhile, the charging Grave Guard with the great weapons overwhelmed the defending Knights, deprived of the advantage of having the momentum of the charge. The Knights turned to flee, but with seemingly supernatural speed the Grave Guard pursued them, hamstringing their horses before hacking apart the fallen riders. In the pursuit, the capture the standard of the Knights as well as the Army Battle standard, earning great glory for the warriors who had long since lost any ability to appreciate such feelings.

The tense, careful maneuvering for the slightest advantage was now at an end. The Grave Guard on the left, with the Army Standard bearing Wight Lord, could no longer avoid a charge. Fortunately for them, the horde of peasant spearmen had second thoughts and refused to charge into their flank. Still, a large unit of Knights with great weapons, including the Bretonnian General, and a small unit of men-at-arms with Halbers charged the Grave Guard in the front. Led by the Wight Lord, no doubt a long dead hero of Bretonnian history, the Grave Guard fought with incredible skill, and the Knights, uncharacteristically, were overcome with fear at seeing their potential fate. The Wight Lord cut down the frightened Bretonnian general, and two more of the Knights were cut down by the glowing Wight blades. Disheartened and afraid, the Knights and men at arms fled for their lives, causing the already skittish peasant spearment to panic and flee.

With most of the Bretonnian force now broken and fleeing, the Grave Guard on both flanks pressed their attacks. On the left, the unit with the Battle Standard charged and drove off the other small unit of men-at-arms with halberds, killing most of them. On the right, the Grave Guard with great weapons charged the bowmen, making their way through a hail of arrows and clamboring over defensive stakes to get at their enemy, but none of it was enough to stop them. They soundly defeated the bowmen, who fled the battlefield and scattered.

Elsewhere, the Vampire general rejoined her unit of Skeleton bodyguards who, thanks to the unholy power of VanHel's Danse Macabre, were able to catch up to and charge the Pegasus Knights. They fought valiantly, their champion (and his trusty mount) managing to cut down the Vampire general, but the result was never in doubt. Overrun by ranks of skeletons, the surviving Pegasus Knights fled the battlefield, soaring high into the air to escape the Skeletons. Adding to the catastrophe for the Bretonnians, the Questing Knights grew impatient and frustrated as the battle turn against their army and, wishing to capture any small amount of glory, couldn't resist charging the massive horde of zombies.

The Grave Guard with Great Weapons returned to the field of battle, having scattered the bowmen to the winds, but there were no more enemy before them. Despite the loss of the general, the fleeing Bretonnian Knights reallied, but there was little they could do.

Though completely outclassed, the massive horde of zombies eventually swarmed, dragged down, and devoured the Questing Knights. All that remained of the Bretonnian force was the rallied remains of a single unit of Knights, and many fleeing peasants who would likely never be seen again. It was a great victory for the Vampire Counts. Not only had the completed their mission to eliminate the Ogre Mercenaries, but they had nearly wiped out a Bretonnian force they had not expected to encounter.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Warhammer Battle for the Cave Multiplayer Battle Report

This was the second in a series of two linked multi-player Warhammer Fantasy games. You can read the results of the first battle in my Warhammer Clash of Scouts Multiplayer Battle Report post. I've also posted the scenario rules for this second game, which was the Battle for the Cave Multiplayer Warhammer Scenario which I created based on a multi-player scenario in the Warhammer Fantasy rulebook.

While the remnants of the Dwarf scout force screened the cave, the Dwarf General decided to send part of his army on a forced march through the night in order to get his artillery deployed as quickly as possible. The Elves, not wanting to be surrounded again, sent half of their army on a flanking maneuver to get around the rear of the advancing Dwarf forces. Perhaps uncharacteristically, the Chaos general decided to play it safe and keep his army together, marching at a moderate pace.

Turn 1
The Dwarf artillery arrived just before dawn and deployed with a field of fire facing the cave opening to deter any of their enemies from approaching it. The remaining scout forces deployed facing the cave but kept their distance. The Dwarfs had a clever plan up their sleeves for capturing the treasure...
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

Turn 2
More Dwarfs began to turn up, informing their comrades of the High Elves behind them chasing the rear of the Dwarf army. The Dwarfs spread out their forces covering a lot of area with their many small units, not knowing which direction an attack might come from. The first Elves to show up, however, were to the right of the Dwarf army, and consisted of a large unit of spearmen, a bolt thrower, a lion chariot, and a mighty Mage Lord. Unfortunately, the great wisdom the Mage Lord had acquired over centuries of study did not prevent him from making a foolish mistake and exposing himself to the Dwarf artillery battery. He was quickly and unceremoniously blown to pieces by the Dwarfs, who quickly took advantage of the opportune target.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

At the same time, the entire Chaos Warrior army arrived on the opposite side of the battlefield from the Dwarfs, facing the back of the cave. They would have a long march ahead of them in order to reach the cave, but their general thought it best to have the large cave between them and the Dwarf artillery. Meanwhile, the clever Dwarf plan was unfolding, as a unit of Miners who had been sent to tunnel into the cave arrived safely at their destination. Having reach the cave containing the treasure horde, they quickly discovered that, of course, it was guarded by a dragon! Though surprised by the unexpected encounter with the ferocious cave dragon, the Miners fought back with courage and ferocity. Four of their number fell, but they severely wounded the strange-looking dragon, and none thought of fleeing.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs


Turn 3
The entire Warriors of Chaos army advanced in haste, but its right flank was held up by a unit of knights slowing down to traverse the nearby wood. Some of the High Elf flankers sprung their trap, as a unit of Swordmaster and large unit of Spearmen appeared in the Dwarf rear. A few Dwarfs were prepared for the envelopment and got off a few crossbow shots, but it had little effect. The Dwarfs now had three large, imposing, and powerful units of High Elves in their flank and rear. In the cave, the dragon became overwhelmed by the sudden and brutal attack of the Dwarf Miners. It was unable to defend itself from their renewed attack, and the Dwarf Hero leading the miners finished off the monster, smashing it right in half with his hammer. With the treasure's guardian defeated, the Miners consolidated their position in the cave, ready to defend it to the last.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

Turn 4
In the Dwarf rear, more units were turning up every minute. A large unit of Dwarfs joined the battle, but so did a Dragon mage, and another High Elf mage on foot. A brave unit of Dwarfs with great weapons, though in a a hopeless situation, decided to go out gloriously and charged High Elf Spearmen, only to be flanked by the Swordmasters. They could only hope that their sacrifice would provide some time for the rest of their army to reorganize. The other unit of High Elf spearmen charged a small unit of Dwarfs with crossbows, the only thing between the High Elves and the Dwarf artillery battery. Meanwhile, the Warriors of Chaos continued their advance, the right flank again slowed by the woods and units getting in each others way.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

As a small consolation, the Dwarf artillery battery just barely managed to kill the Dragon mage and his dragon. However, the Dwarfs with great weapons were wiped out, and the Dwarf crossbow unit lost three of their number and fled. As a result, the crew of a nearby Bolt Thrower panicked and fled. The High Elf Spearmen followed through into the heart of the Dwarf artillery battery, charging the Bolt Thrower directed by the Dwarf Master Engineer and army general.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

Turn 5
Both the High Elves and Dwarfs found it difficult to maneuver in the hectic scrum that had developed in the midst of the Dwarf battle line. However, the High Elves with their large, powerful units easily bested the mostly small units and war machine crews of the Dwarfs. The Dwarfs still had one large unit and a couple war machines left, but most of the rest of their force was scattering. What little hope remained was no doubt dashed as yet another large unit of High Elves with spears showed up, moving in to finish off the scattering remnants of the Dwarf army rather than trying to reach the cave, which the Dwarf Miners still held. Meanwhile, the Warriors of Chaos continued their long, slow advance towards the cave, so far taking little part in the battle.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

Turn 6
The stalwart Dwarfs rallied most of their units, but they were small and spread out, and the Dwarfs struggled to form a coherent defense with the large Elf units in their midst. The Swordmaster drove off a unit of Dwarfs with Greatweapons. The Dwarfs still had one large unit and some artillery in reserve near a wood, and another strong at the base of a nearby hill keeping an eye on the cave entrace. At this point, the Chaos Warriors joined the battle, charging into a combat between High Elf spearmen and Dwarfs with crossbows, killing many on both sides in the three-way combat. The Dwarfs fled, but the High Elves held their ground. A lone, apparently suicidal Marauder Horseman charged another unit of High Elf spearmen and was rewarded with the swift death he was clearly seeking.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

Turn 7
As the battle was nearing its end, the bulk of the Chaos Warrior army finall reached the cave, moving around it on either side. There wasn't much time left, as the Miners had secured most of the treasure by this point, but a unit of Chaos Knights positioned itself for a charge into the cave. The Dwarf unit at the base of the hill was prepared to charge the Knights to prevent them from assaulting the cave, but a spectacular shot from the far-off Hellcannon annihilated the entire unit. The stunned hero who barely survived the blast vengefully fired his pistol at the nearest enemy, the Chaos Knights. His shot took down one of the knights, but with the Knights now free to assault the cave, that shot could make the difference between victory and defeat. Elsewhere, the other unit of Chaos Knights defeated and drove off the High Elf spearmen, and reformed facing the cave opening, giving the Chaos army another unit that could assault the Dwarf-held cave.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

Turn 8
The last remaning large unit of Dwarfs was destroyed by the High Elf spearmen and Swordmasters, leaving their army mostly destroyed. The Dwarf gyrocopter bravely sacrificed itself to buy more time to secure the treasure by charging one of the Chaos Knight units, and helpfully a unit of High Elf spearmen also charged them. That left the Chaos army the one unit of four Chaos Knights to assault the Dwarf Miners holding the cave. This was the only chance left to snatch victory from the Dwarfs. They charged in, killing most of the Miners, through the remaning Miners and the hero killed two of the Knights. Despite the heavy losses, the Dwarfs were determined to hold the cave.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

Final Battle
The grinding battle at the mouth of the cave continued. The remaning Minders were cut down, leaving only the lone Dwarf hero to defend the treasure. It came down to a single combat between the Dwarf hero and the one remaning Chaos Knight. The Knight fought ferociously, badly wounding the Dwarf. Fighting through the pain, and no doubt motivated by visions of all the treasure he was fighting for, the Dwarf Hero struck a mighty blow that send the Chaos Knight tumbling to the rocky cave floor, where the Dwarf finihsed him off.
Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs Warhammer Battle for the Treasure Horde - Warriors of Chaos, High Elves, and Dwarfs

In the cave, only the Dwarf hero remained able to fight, but the time they spent in the cave was enough to secure most of the treasure horde. Many Dwarfs had been sent through the tunnel the Miner's had dug to transport away the treasure that the Miner's had secured. The Dwarf hero, along with the surviving wounded Miners, went back through their tunnel along with the Dwarfs who had been sent to carry away the treasure, leaving the largely intact High Elf and Chaos armies to fight each other over the remaining scraps. The Dwarf army was mostly shattered, many Dwarf lives and war machines alike had been lost, but the legendary treasure horde was theirs.