Thursday, 8 September 2016

Warmaster Battle Report: High Elves vs. Chaos


  I have, off and on, taken photos of many club nights or games that I have played.

They are rarely good, and by the time I remember to do them I realise that I have a very incomplete reference of a battle, usually half a turn in or at the very end when things are half tidied away!

This past Friday, however, I made the effort of taking them after each player's part of a turn, to give a clearer sense of movement and casualties.

It's hardly a 90s White Dwarf feature but I scribbled on the photos with Paint Tool Sai and I think it's pretty readable, with some narration...


Deployment




This was a game put on at the last minute using all my own terrain and models, painted, for the first time ever!  We had to settle at ~1300 points, a bit unusual but that's what I had to hand.  I believe the lists were:

High Elf Army, 1315 points
----------------------------------------------------------------
120 - 2 Spearmen
150 - 2 Archers
440 - 4 Silver Helms
190 - 2 Chariots
65 - 1 Elven Bolt Thrower
180 - 1 General
80 - 1 Hero
90 - 1 Wizard
---------------------------------------------------------------- 1315 - 11/6

Vs.


Chaos Army, 1300 points
----------------------------------------------------------------
300 - 2 Chaos Warriors
120 - 2 Chaos Marauders
180 - 2 Marauder Horsemen
120 - 4 Chaos Hounds
285 - 3 Chaos Chariots
125 - 1 General
80 - 1 Hero
90 - 1 Sorcerer
---------------------------------------------------------------- 1300 - 13/7

I was playing High Elves and my friend Mark was playing Chaos.  I went over the points limit slightly for High Elves, but Chaos were allowed 4 chaos hound units to compensate; something normally only allowed at the 2000 points level.

We both had a solid brigade of core infantry, but we knew that it would be the cavalry that would win or lose the battle, as is often the case in Warmaster.

Chaos Turn 1




  Mark's Chaos Horde (mostly) advanced with confidence, creating a battle line that looked quite solid from my side.  Only a couple of chaos hounds units on a flank failed to heed the call of Tzeentch.  Lacking in missile weaponry, he waited to see my opening moves.

High Elf Turn 1




 I decided to take a risk with my High Elves and split them, even as my infantry core failed to advance into position!  I put my Eagles right beside the Chaos chariots threatening to the right, in the hopes of forcing them to pull back or expose a flank to my own chariots.  Chaos Hounds threatened from the rear but I felt the Eagles worth sacrificing in order to sieze this side of the board.

My Silver Helm cavalry on the left split into two units of two, one blocking the way of the Chaos Marauder Cavalry, the other awaiting to see how Mark's core battle line would move.

My Bolt Thrower artillery crept forward just enough to get an enemy chariot unit in sight and, to my amazement, all 6 shots hit, and all 6 armour saves were failed, crippling the unit and pushing it back in a state of confusion, losing 2 out of its 3 stands!

Chaos Turn 2



  Enraged by my nasty elven habit of shooting poxy arrows from afar, Mark charged his Marauder cavalry through the wooded area on the left to meet my silver helms head on.  A tough struggle ensued, but Chaos fell back and were destroyed, allowing my Silver Helms to push forward in a combat reform and threaten his rear.

Mark moved his reserve Chariot unit to threaten my own reserve Silver Helms in the centre.

On the right hand side the Chaos Hounds were whipped into advancing but slavered and dug their heels before they could strike my Eagles.

High Elf Turn 2

 



  Fresh from defeating the Chaos Marauder Cavalry on the left flank, the remains of my Silver Helms crashed into two units of Chaos Hounds in the flank and rear, ensuring their doom.

A series of successful commands saw the remaining Silver Helms bypassing the intercepting Chaos Chariot unit and crashing into the brigade of Chaos infantry.

Meanwhile, my infantry were roused from their lethargy and pushed forward along with the bolt throwers, meaning that they could shoot at the lone Chaos Chariot unit, damaging it and putting it into confusion.

On the right hand side, my chariots crashed into Mark's Chaos forces, supported by the Eagles, destroying not just the two Chaos Chariots that had been worrying me, but also a Chaos Hound unit.

At this point, Mark had reached his breakpoint of seven units lost, so we called the match there before doing the Silver Helms on Chaos infantry combats.

RESULT:

Chaos: 7 units lost (Approx. 490 points)
High Elves: 0 units lost (Approx. 145 points)

Conclusion:

This was, I believe, the fastest game of Warmaster that I have ever played.  I also believe it is one of the very, very few times that I have won.  We played on a simple battlefield and our armies were just big enough to allow a range of units to use.  Mark's luck deserted him for a couple of crucial command and combat dice rolls, which paved the way for me to push him towards his breakpoint, by destroying his "glass cannon" units of light cavalry.