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September 28, 2015

3

Not That Berserk!

by PeterG
Shieldbreakers Advance

Mac’s Lads advance.

 

Not only did I just get to try out the Kings of War second edition rules but I finally got to field several of my completed dwarf units for the first time.  These included the general (Lady Ursula on bear), a troop of gunners, a troop of crossbows (with back up to form a regiment), a Stone Priest, his buddy the Greater Earth Elemental, the Ironguard, and the Hasslefree Miniatures Shieldbreakers Regiment I had just finished.  While one can’t expect them all to survive their first encounter with conflict or even win the day, I just hoped they looked good and held their own.  The dice always have their own say of course.

 

Dwarf right

Dwarf right

Dwarf Left

Dwarf Left

 

Hordes really come to the fore in second edition army construction. They are the key to diversity in your army as each Horde taken allows four Troops units and one of each Hero, Monster, and War Machine. Whereas each Regiment opens up only two Troops and one of Hero, Monster, OR War Machine.  As always seems to be the case with my miniature collections, adjustments would have to be made.  So my two Regiments of Bulwarkers became one Horde despite being of two different manufacturers (yes, it hurts the eyes) while a movement tray and ten figures helped my Troop of Crossbow become a Regiment.

 

Shieldbreakers, Ironwatch Handgunners and Lady Ursula advance into their first battle.

Shieldbreakers, Ironwatch Handgunners and Lady Ursula advance into their first battle.

 

Doing this allowed the right combination for me to field all the new units I had painted especially the Earth Elemental and the bear riding hero.  This meant I only had one artillery piece but they had all been bloodied before so weren’t a priority anyway.

 

Kingdoms of Men left flank

Kingdoms of Men left flank

Kingdoms of Men center

Kingdoms of Men center

Kingdoms of Men right flank

Kingdoms of Men right flank

 

Ryan, being far more pragmatic, wrote a force containing two siege artillery pieces and two cannon, two heavy cavalry, and blocks of troops armed to crush dwarf armor.  To make matters worse, he got the first turn and his cannon were painfully accurate.  Must have had fresh powder because all four hit their targets, wavering my gunners and wounding the Shieldbreakers and Brock Riders.  Ryan doesn’t like giant badgers.

 

Knights crush the shot up Brock Riders

Knights crush the shot up Brock Riders

 

The Headstrong rule worked for the gunners even if they couldn’t shoot and dwarf army advanced.  The Rangers on the far right were able to Waver the archers facing them, the crossbow armed dwarfs wavered a troop of men armed with the same but the cannon crew were wishing for some of Ryan’s powder because they couldn’t hit anything.

 

Turn Two Opens

Turn Two Opens

 

On the dwarf right flank the wounded Brock Riders found themselves brought down by the Thunderous charge of knights on barded horse while the Shieldbreakers, braced in difficult terrain, barely held against the other mounted unit.  This was already proving to be a fast and bloody game.

 

Shieldbreakers take massive damage but manage to hold AND mke their Headstrong roll

Shieldbreakers take massive damage but manage to hold AND make their Headstrong roll

 

With the Brockriders gone there was plenty of room for the EarthElemental and Berserker Lord to charge into the knights, stone fists and rune hammers breaking open plate mail leaving the knights Wavered and backing up, quickly.  Lady Ursula lead her Ironguard and the Shieldbreakers against the second unit of knights and wiped them out (even with a reroll from his Army Banner).  The Rangers, moving up the flank, routed the archers with bowfire while the Bulwarkers moved forward through difficult ground preparing to face the Horde of pike advancing toward them.

 

Ironguard on the flank!

Ironguard on the flank!

 

Then things went berserk, no really, the human berserker unit charged the dwarf berserker lord wounding him but not wavering him from his goal of chasing down the knights that had killed his lads.

 

Knights back up while the berserkers catch the mounted lord.

Knights back up while the berserkers catch but don’t deter the mounted lord.

 

The human infantry with polearms attacked Lady Ursula while a human hero stepped around the unit of spear to blast the Shieldbreakers with his Boomstick. The cannon behind him did the same for emphasis.  That was enough for the dwarfs and despite the re-roll provided by their general they fled the field, carrying their wounded with them.  Lady Ursula fared better repulsing the charge but was left wavered and unable to make her headstrong roll.  Fortunately the Ironguard and gunners were able to come to her aid engaging two units and holding the left flank.

 

Knights defeated

Knights defeated the infantry surge forward that gap is suspiciously wide enough for a cannon ball.

 

The berserker lord, stone priest, and earth elemental took down the knights then pushed toward the cannon, dreading the shot they could see being loaded all while under fire from the siege artillery on the hill. The Berserkers turned around and prepared to charge the Bulwarker horde in the flank even while the crossbow unit of dwarf poured down the hill to do the same to them.  Even taking a cannon ball to his granite chin (Ryan rolled one point under-whew) the elemental took out the cannon crew with the berserker lord then turned to support the mayhem transpiring in the center.

 

Knights defeated but now caught in a hail of artillery.

Knights defeated but now caught in a hail of artillery.

 

The human horde charged their dwarven counterpart with the support of their insane brethern causing wounds but not shaking them.  Thus the pitched fight to control the center began.  The battle shifted back and forth, massive piles of dice flying with all the flank attacks but the disordered charges from difficult terrain and Ensnare of the human horde made for a smaller percentage of hits.  Even then, miniature blood was flowing.

 

The clash surges back and forth.

The clash surges back and forth.

Despite the loss of the handgunner troop Lady Ursula and the Ironguard were victorious if bloodied as were the Bulwarkers and crossbows. Unfortunately with their opponents dead or routed the wounded dwarf spearmen were an obvious target for the remaining siege artillery which saw off the survivors, routing them from the field with well aimed shelling.  The characters from both armies then squared off while the berserker lord charged toward the reloading crews on the hill. While his massive badger mount was able to move out of their minimum range he wasn’t able to defeat Ryan’s ability to roll a six when needed and the tattooed dwarf was blasted off his mount by the lone cannon left on the human right flank.  A truly epic shot. Did I mention that Ryan hates my badgers?

 

Dwarf Horde victorious but very tempting to artillery.

Dwarf Horde victorious but very tempting to artillery.  Too tempting.

 

In the end the human artillery on the hill saw their general killed by a female dwarf riding a bear and the Ironguard take down the Boomstick wielding hero in revenge for blasting apart the Shieldbreakers.  The dwarf crossbows and rangers had moved into range and were taking aim at the mortar crews when, at the end of turn six, Ryan rolled a three indicating the game was over.  Dwarfs had taken the field.

We had chosen to play the straight forward Kill scenario and there was plenty of killing on both sides. It was an absolute blast with the battle lines shifting, great narrative moments, and much laughter. I really like the new rules and can’t wait to play again.  Now I’m really going to have to name more of my units and characters, especially the elemental.  He rocks, literally!

 

Survived his first battle!

Survived his first battle!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Sep 28 2015

    Spiffing battle- I am very interested in the back and forth action of the game and how that really had that oldhammer feel to it. Also love Duane.
    Cheers
    Ths

    Reply
  2. Brian Miller
    Sep 28 2015

    Looks awesome Peter. I love the earth elemental.

    Reply
  3. Sep 28 2015

    Pretty exciting report! The elemental makes a great addition to the army!

    Reply

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