Battle Report 16
2300pts vs : Forces of Nature
Feanor entered into the circular chamber, descending the steps he was joined by the elderly Loremaster Eldroth whose staff of office rapped against the marble upon which they strode. Feanor’s eyes fixed upon the dancing flames in the centre of the room, the Sacred Flame of Raloris a pure red fire unlike any fuelled by wood or oil. This would be Feanor’s test.
Pulling his eyes away from the flame Feanor scanned the chamber seeing the Lords of the great houses of the city, the King’s Council and finally King Paweldran his cousin. Paweldran did not return his gaze and Feanor realised Eldroth had come to a halt, the final step must be his alone.
Pain erupted as Feanor crossed the threshold, a living flame engulfing his body. Doubt seeped into his thoughts, the arrogance of his youth stripped away, his fragilities laid bare. Hate, jealousy, vanity threatened to overwhelm him, clinging on to the disciplines he was taught from an early age Feanor fought to retain his composure. One word held his weaknesses at bay, only this simple word kept his mind in check through the hours of agony: Duty.
Feanor staggered, his confident stride mere seconds before a distant memory. Only an outstretched arm saved him from falling. Looking up Feanor saw his cousins Alenui and Amarynth as they helped him regain his footing. Descending the steps in front of him was King Paweldran carrying the double crested Helm of Yandruil only to be worn by the Master of Horse.
Game Intro and Lists:
Ed and i had tried to schedule a practice game before he headed off to the Clash of Kings the premiere Mantic run tournament m. Unfortunately our schedules wouldn’t allow this so instead I am to serve as lab rat to whatever Ed has schemed up on the journey home from the event (where all the most evil ideas are hatched).
Mage (Alenui): Inspiring Talisman, Bane Chant, Lightning Bolt: 135pts
Mage (Eldroth): Lightning Bolt, Conjurers Staff, Bane Chant: 125pts
King (King Paweldran): Horse, Shardblade, Blade of the Beast Slayer: 170pts
Drakon Lord (Amarynth): Mace of Crushing: 170pts
Chariot Noble (Feanor): 100pts
Spearmen Horde: Brew of Strength: 270pts
Palace Guard Horde: Chalice of Wrath: 280pts
Quicksilver Regiment: Jesse’s Boots: 250pts
Stormwind Regiment: Chant of Hate: 230pts
Seaguard Regiment: 150pts
Silverbreeze Troop:: 115pts
Silverbreeze Troop: 115pts
Forest Guard: Skirmisher Boots: 115pts
Bolt Thrower: 80pts
I’ve tweaked a few bits since I last discussed the list. I wasn’t really sold on buying an expensive extra spell on my mages and really liked the idea of getting a Seaguard regiment into the list as it’s a reallly good tool for scenario play. This gave me an extra hero unlock and as this army is a painting project based on classic Warhammer 4th edition “red era” styles I wanted to include the iconic Chariot Hero model. This was also a great opportunity to test out the improved Noble on Chariot rules following the Big Red Book’s release.
Forces of Nature List:
Keris: Surge: 110pts
Unicorn: Lightning bolt, Host of the Shadow Beast, Torc of Dissonance: 150pts
Gladewalker Druid: Crown of the Wizard King, Ring of Harmony, Surge, Mind Fog: 170pts
Hunter Regiment: 140pts
Hunter Regiment: 140pts
Fire Elemental Horde: Brew of Sharpness 265pts
Fire Elemental Horde: 220pts
Scorchwings Regiment: 120pts
Scorchwings Regiment: 120pts
Earth Elemental Regiment: 130pts
Earth Elemental Regiment: 130pts
Beast of Nature: Extra Attacks, Fly: 205pts
Greater Air Elemental: Lightning: 200pts
Greater Air Elemental: Lightning: 200pts
I really liked Ed’s list, it’s got lots of my least favourite things to face from the Forces of Nature list and he’d added a nice amount of shooting and speed whilst retaining the durability I’ve become accustomed to him taking. I’m not that used to facing much shooting in 3rd so my squishy elves would need to be careful whilst I neutralised it.
With 2 regiments of Earth Elementals and Hunters of the Wild Ed had some really effective screening units to block me up whilst his Greater Air Elementals and Fire Elementals manoeuvred for the coup de grace.
Deployment and Scenario
We rolled up loot as the scenario which is challenging for both of us as both our armies like to play a patient game jockeying for position before committing. We spread the tokens evenly across the board.
Ed won the roll for sides, he chose the north which had clearer firing lines. We both committed fairly early on to having our main combat threats on the left side followed by our lighter support units going on the right. I was looking to use my longer line to allow me to defeat Ed on the right before turning in to face Ed’s main column on the left. Ed won the roll for first turn and he took it, keen to put pressure on the tokens and get a head start on shooting war.
Nature Turn 1
The foul forest dwellers advanced out of the terrain cautiously keen to disrupt the magical artefacts that lay in front of them. Only their craven fear of the glorious Elven host ahead of them preventing them for moving up more aggressively.
On the right the Scorchwings unloaded their flaming missiles at the proud Bel-Valdarian Navy, despite significant damage to ancestral pendants and soft silken robes the proud warriors were unmoved and readied themselves to return fire. In the centre two lightning bolts struck at Alenui his mystic shield protected him but deflecting the blows greatly drained his magic reserves.
Elf Turn 1
With Ed’s main column on the left not pushing up too aggressively I decided to use the space to swing my flank round to limit Ed’s options when advancing towards my Spears and centre.
On the right I took the opportunity to charge the Forest Guard into the Hunters hoping to pin them in place or draw in the Beast of Nature giving my other units follow up charges letting me win the flank quickly and then turn towards the centre.
Shooting saw limited results on the right with a combination of arrows, bolts and lightning only managing a waver on a unit of Scorchwings. Lady fortune smiled on the left, however, with significant damage on the exposed Hunters coming from the Silverbreeze bows and Eldroth’s staff.
Nature Turn 2
With the Elves threatening his column from the left flank Ed split his column with both Greater Air Elementals moving to the left and the Hunters charging the Silverbreeze on the hill. On the right the Scorchwings dropped behind the hill wary of the Elven shooting and chariot’s charge range. Finally the unicorn charged the isolated Bolt Thrower in the wood.
Shooting saw limited damage on Amarynth (Drakon Lord) as the Greater Air Elementals tried to clip his wings with lightning. Keris also blinded the valiant Seaguard with his staff but their spirits remained strong regardless of what the uncivilised beasts threw their way.
Combat saw the bolt throwers crew decide to head home rather than deal with the unicorn and its rather menacing shadow. The hunters, however, were less successful only wavering the Silverbreeze on the hill and not even managing that against the Forest Guard.
Elf Turn 2
With Ed now committing his forces the Elves wasted no time in striking back. Lowering their lances the Elven knights charged headlong into the formidable Earth Elementals each supported by a mighty hero of the Royal house. With the cavalry providing cover the Spearmen charged up the hill into the Hunters of the Wild as the wavered Silverbreeze got out of the way.
On the right the Silverbreeze drew their blades and charged into the Beast of Nature, hoping to ground it buying time for the infantry to clear the Hunters who were hit with a combined charge from the Palace Guard in one flank and the Seaguard in the other.
Shooting saw Feanor’s atop his chariot draw back his bow and send 4 arrows arching towards the Scorchwings. As planned the Scorchwings easily evaded these arrows but in doing so they moved right into the path of Alenui’s lightning bolts leaving only charred remains.
Reciting the ancient spell Eldroth blessed the Quicksilver Cavalry’s lances their red blades turning a brilliant white as along with Lord Amarynth they banished the evil demons possessing the stones before them (this was immediately followed by a bit of dressage to avoid any unfortunate surge charges next turn).
Assailed by King Paweldran’s mighty blade Yahdra from the flank and Stormwind’s lances from the front the other Earth Elementals fared no better. Both Hunter regiments were easily dispatched by the Elven infantry and crucially the Beast of Nature was disordered by the brave charge of the Silverbreeze.
Nature Turn 3
With the Elven Cavalry in the open and Ed eager for vengeance the Fire Elementals both went into the two Cavalry units with one Air Elemental joining in on the Quicksilvers while the other decided to duel Amarynth.
The revenge against the cavalry tour continued as the Unicorn and Beast also charged the Silverbreeze units. On the right Keris and the remaining Scorchwings scattered to avoid the Elven infantry’s wrath.
Combat kicked off with the Unicorn routing the Silverbreeze but the Beast wasn’t so successful only landing limited damage. The key combats on the left began poorly for the elves with the Stormwind failing to hold against the Brew of Sharpness Fire Elementals. Things quickly improved, however, as the Quicksilvers were only wavered and Lord Amarynth held steady.
Elf Turn 3
With the cavalry on the far left holding, the spear horde was free to charge off the hill into the Fire Elementals with King Paweldran in support. On the right the pinned Beast of Nature was hit by the combined might of the Palace and Forest Guard units.
Shooting saw Alenui focus his energies on lightning bolting the unicorn but couldn’t even manage to land a hit on the majestic beast. Sighing at the folly of his young apprentice Eldroth channelled his power through his Loremaster’s staff searing deep gashes along it’s flank. Meanwhile the Scorchwings fled the field fearing all was lost as the Seaguard and Feanor rained arrows down on them.
In combat the momentum off the hill was enough for the spears to break the Fire Elementals and Amarynth landed a few biting blows on the Air Elemental with his blade. To the right the beast of nature was easily cut down by the combined axes and swords of the Elven infantry.
Nature Turn 4
With most of his units pinned down Ed focused on finishing off the Cav and Drakon Lord on the left and the Unicorn routed Alenui. Keris meanwhile cleared off the Forest Guard with his solar staff.
Elf Turn 4
The Fire Elementals had just left their flank exposed and the Spearmen gleefully took it whilst King Paweldran charged the closest Air Elemental to prevent any surge tricks. The Palace Guard now free marched into the centre to take the middle loot token. The Seaguard and Chariot Noble moved to try and better deal with the Unicorn and finally the Silverbreeze charged Keris hope to disrupt him.
Shooting was uneventful but combat saw the Spears dispatch the Fire Elementals in the flank and a lucky nerve roll mean the Silverbreeze wavered Keris. Paweldran drove his blade deep into the heart of the Air Elemental which remained unphased.
Nature Turn 5
Things were looking tough for Ed he needed to gamble on getting some luck to somehow hold the loot token on the left and stop me from adding the token from the right to the one already held by my Palace Guard.
The unengaged Air Elemental charged the mage Eldroth whilst the other continued it’s fight with King Paweldran. On the right the unicorn moved up to lightning bolt the Seaguard.
The Unicorn targeted the injured Seaguard with its lighting finally breaking the unit which dropped the loot token. Combat saw Eldroth hiking up the skirt of his robes and running for the hills rather than facing the Greater Air Elemental’s wroth. Meanwhile Paweldran remained steadfast in his battle with the other Air Elemental.
Elf Turn 5
Feanor spied that the unicorn had just strayed into his chariot’s charge range and seeing an opportunity to put an end to a big threat charged down the hill. On the left the spears charged the injured Air Elemental picking up the token at the same time. Meanwhile Paweldran went after the Gladestalker Druid to shut down any surge tricks.
The Spears comfortably saw off the Air Elemental and turned to face the final one. Keris was disrupted and the Druid wavered. Feanor aided by the momentum from the hill landed several blows on the unicorn but failed to even waver it.
Nature Turn 6
Little of note happened as Ed just tried to spare his remaining units from the elves wrath.
Elf Turn 6
Little took place as the Elves had few targets available. A further wound was caused on the unicorn through shooting and the Gladestalker Druid was wavered by King Paweldran again.
With that the battle was over and the Elves had won 2-0.
Feanor leap from his chariot landing softly by the glowing amulet. Fortunately the evil Lord Keris had fled without getting his claws on the protective charm. Though not blessed by mage-sight Feanor could sense the energy emanating from the jewel as it fought to keep the Elven realm safe from harm. Staring out towards the forest Feanor knew Keris would not be stopped by just one defeat. With a heavy heart he mounted his chariot and drove towards his liege King Paweldran.
Conclusions and Jubilations:
Always nice to get a victory against a player of Ed’s calibre. This feels like an odd game to evaluate, the scenario and our lists made us both play quite aggressively. As neither of us gave the other much time deployment was important and it felt like we both deployed how we wanted and the game quickly played out from there.
I think there were two big moments that led to the Elven victory. One was the Quicksilver Cavalry surviving the double charge from the Air Elemental and Fire Elementals. It was likely one of the cavalry regiments would survive that turn but the odds favoured the Stormwind which would have been far less favourable for me as the Quicksilvers holding blocked up two units. The other was rather unfortunate, Ed was operating under the impression he hadn’t bought fly for his Beast of Nature, this error meant I picked the up a key piece in his army cheaply as he was trapped after getting disrupted. It’s a real shame when things like this happen but we couldn’t work out a sensible way take back any moves so ended up playing through.
Ed’s Unicorn caused me a lot of trouble with Host of the Shadow Beast results in 7 strong attacks on a speed 10 pathfinder unit is a nightmare to deal with. If other armies can utilise similar options it’s definitely something to watch out for. I may need to revisit putting duellist on my King.
I liked the Noble on the chariot whilst he’s fragile and speed 8 isn’t great, a cheap scoring unit/flank threat is really valuable and adds more flexibility to the list. I liked being able to pair him up with the Seaguard as they compliment each other quite nicely and worked well on an isolated flank against other light units. I’m keen to see how he would perform in a more central role alongside my bigger combat units.