Ogre Kingdoms vs High Elves (500 points); 08Aug13

After a game against Justinmatters‘ Goblin force, next on the menu for the evening was a contingent of High Elves piloted by Forkbanger.  My list is as noted previously, but for convenience, here it is again.

Miss Madras, Firebelly, additional hand weapon (FB)

Heidi’s lasses, 5 Ironguts, musician (IG)

Helga’s lasses, 3 Leadbelchers (LB)

Blackcat Bone, Sabretusk (ST)

Forkbanger has noted the impracticalities of putting a force of High Elves together at 500 points as everything is expensive and it’s hard to take anything that can absorb a hit long enough to do real damage .

Mage, level 2, Lore of High Magic (M)

15 Sea Guard (SG)

6 Sword Master of Hoeth (SM)

Sky Cutter, bolt thrower (SC)

Sticking with Battle Line, we roll up a hill, a forest, an Earthblood Mere, some Ghost Fences (on the hill) and some wall (not on the hill).  For the third time in a row, the Firebelly rolls Cascading Fire Cloak and swaps it in favour of Fireball.  To be honest, I’d have swapped anything for Fireball in this match up, even Flaming Sword of Rhuin and Fulminating Flame Cage (both of which I love), as small units of Elves really hate strength 4 magic missiles.  The Mage takes Soul Quench and Walk Between Worlds.  I force Forkbanger to take the first turn hoping that the High Elves will advance into my Leadbelchers and get shredded.

Ogre_Kingdoms_vs_High_Elves_08Aug13_Deployment

Luckily for the gaming, Forkbanger isn’t so silly.  The only movement is the Sky Cutter, which moves to the centre then one-shots the Sabretusk with its bolt thrower.  For this exact reason, I always try and keep the Sabretusk 6″ away from any other units; panic is a very real threat when no-one is packing Lords or BSBs.  We get 3,2 magic dice, then find out that Soul Quench is out of range of any targets.

Ogre_Kingdoms_vs_High_Elves_08Aug13_Turn_1_High_Elves

I run the Ironguts into the swamp (taking a wound from dangerous terrain) and the Leadbelchers walk forward to get range to shoot the Sky Cutter.  Funnily enough, this is just what I hoping to get Forkbanger to do (i.e. walk into my short range shooting) but the difference between Ogre resilience and High Elf resilience is significant.  I roll up 1,1 magic dice then roll low on a small Fireball at the Sword Masters; the Mage dispels it with his single die.  The Leadbelchers manage to put a wound on the Sky Cutter.

Ogre_Kingdoms_vs_High_Elves_08Aug13_Turn_1_Ogre_Kingdoms

The Sky Cutter moves out of the Ironguts’ charge arc and lines up a beautiful shot on the flank of the Leadbelchers; everyone else moves up behind the Ghost Fence.  There are another 1,1 magic dice which turns out not to be enough to even cast Soul Quench, and another impressive turn is completed as the entire army rains arrows and bolts onto the Leadbelchers to no effect whatsoever.

Ogre_Kingdoms_vs_High_Elves_08Aug13_Turn_2_High_Elves

Not surprisingly, the Ironguts charge the Sword Masters (losing one outright to dangerous terrain).  Surprisingly, the Sword Masters elect to hold.  The Leadbelchers, now looking somewhat like hedgehogs after the barrage of arrows last turn, continue their advance toward the Sea Guard.  We finally get a big magic phase (3,1) but I get greedy and fail to cast the big version of Fireball by a single pip.  No matter, as the Firebelly uses her breath weapon [it looks like the Sea Guard are too far away in the maps but there was a corner of the unit in range when we played] and the Leadbelchers unleash hell to shred the Sea Guard.  Impact hits take out a few Sword Masters before they get to swing, and the survivors aren’t even able to finish off a single Ogress before they are chopped to bits.  The Ironguts reform to face the Sea Guard while stuffing tasty white meat into their mouths.

Ogre_Kingdoms_vs_High_Elves_08Aug13_Turn_2_Ogre_Kingdoms

In an act of apparent desperation, the Sky Cutter charges the Firebelly on the flank of the Leadbelchers.  The Sea Guard stay still; I thought that this was to avoid the moving and shooting penalty, but Forkbanger cleverly uses his 3,1 magic dice to cast Walk Between Worlds to get them out of trouble.  Sadly, the dice say no and the Mage fails to cast it, leaving him surrounded by the disappointed glares of his compatriots and (slightly further away) a hungry force of Ogresses.  Still, at least they won’t suffer the same fate as their brethren in the Border Princes did at the hands of the Beastmen.  The Sky Cutter makes up for it, killing off one of the Leadbelchers with impact hits and taking no wounds back.  The Leadbelchers hold, but fail to reform to face.

Ogre_Kingdoms_vs_High_Elves_08Aug13_Turn_3_High_Elves

The Ironguts charge the Sea Guard who flee but are run down.  The Sky Cutter continues its good run by putting two wounds on the Firebelly for none in return.  The Ogresses once again hold but fail to reform.

Ogre_Kingdoms_vs_High_Elves_08Aug13_Turn_3_Ogre_Kingdoms

The Firebelly is killed by the Sky Cutter and the Leadbelchers flee and are run down.  We realise that the game is pretty much over now, as the Ironguts will never be able to charge the Sky Cutter (which can move out their charge arc each turn) and the Sky Cutter is unlikely to kill off all the Ironguts in the remaining turns.  Rather than moving the miniatures, we just roll the dice to see if the Sky Cutter gets a lucky hit to take out the Ironguts or make them panic off the table, but it’s not to be.  Victory for the Ogre Kingdoms!

Ogre_Kingdoms_vs_High_Elves_08Aug13_Turn_4_High_Elves

The game was fun, but it was a bit of a mismatch.  Ogres are good at brawling even at low points but High Elves seem to struggle to even fit in the required three units at this level.  At the start we both assumed that magic would dominate as Fireball is highly effective against small units of Elves and Forkbanger had taken a level 2 Mage, but as it turns out neither of us got a single spell off all game.  In some ways it is a bit disappointing that Forkbanger’s clever play (especially trying to use Walk Between Worlds) were stymied by the dice, whereas my own simplistic ‘run forward and smash’ game was rewarded.

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Categories: Battle reports, Campaigns, Escalation campaign, Warhammer Fantasy Battle | Tags: , , , | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “Ogre Kingdoms vs High Elves (500 points); 08Aug13

  1. It’s too bad for the elves. They can’t really take any sort of damage and the 18″ range of Soul Quench is a bit short. I think that the Sea Guard are an interesting choice over the archers. The archers are cheaper with the longer range bows, and you’re not even likely to take advantage of the spears with a unit that size (and the Armour Save is not too useful). At least none of your Fireballs went off, because that would have wrecked any of the High Elf units.

    I haven’t really messed around with 500 point lists for the High Elves, but I am a bit curious now. Congrats on the win.

    • Thanks. 500 points treats the armies very differently, and we’ve found that it favours those who can brawl without help – Ogres are in a good position and I imagine that Chaos Warriors would be a pretty tough proposition too. High Elves are far from resilient and they’re so expensive that you just don’t get many wounds in this size of game.

      I’m not sure why Forkbanger picked Sea Guard, but we have some vague ideas about maintaining continuity as we grow our armies so possibly he wants Sea Guard at a larger point value and put them in here.

      I’d certainly be interested in your thoughts on 500 point High Elf forces (but remember that we’re also limiting to no lords or rares, no monsters or monstrous cavalry and no 1+ armour saves at this point level in case that affects your choices).

      • I messed around a little bit and came up with a couple of 500 point lists. I would probably go with a Mage option personally, but I do have a soft spot for the Dragon Princes in the other list.

        Mage, Level 2, Heavens Magic
        12 Archers
        10 Sword Masters
        9 Sword Masters

        The Sword Masters could be swapped for White Lions instead, but running them 7 wide gives you full 14 attacks from the front row. I thought about High Magic since the mage is effectively casting at +3 and the casting values are often low, but settled on Heavens instead. Iceshard Blizzard would be great and any other thing from Heavens would probably be helpful. Other lore options like High, Beasts, or Shadow might be useful, too.

        Noble, Barded Elven Steed, Halberd, Dragon Armour, Shield, Dawnstone
        5 Silver Helms, Shields
        5 Ellyrian Reavers, Spears & Bows
        5 Dragon Princes, Standard, Gleaming Pennant

        This list trades magic for speed, with everything having 9″ Movement. Of course, it could really suffer if stuck in to combat. The Noble and Dragon Princes are Leadership 9, so that should help a little with Psychology tests. It doesn’t have many bodies, but everybody except for the Reavers have 2+ armour saves (the Noble with a 3+ re-rollable in combat).

        • I like both of these lists a lot. The all cavalry one is a bit light with only 17 wounds across the whole lot, but they are generally wrapped in good armour. 500 point games are quick and fun so why not try them out a little with your friends and see how you go. We’ve found that running this escalation format has really breathed a bit of life into the game again for us.

    • The difference between shielded Seaguard and Archers is 2 points; that’s 30 extra points for the unit of fifteen, which will give 3 Archers. The trade-off is a longer range (on a smaller board), for no armour rather than 5+ (which is useful against Vampire Counts, Lizardmen, Orcs & Goblins, and Empire) and the loss of 5 attacks in close combat, which units get into very quickly.

      I’m opting for more melee attacks and a degree of resilience for the loss of six inches of range and three shots- and the extra range is only effectively useful for one turn.

      I’d have brought a Bolt Thrower, Great Eagle or maybe even some Sisters, but we’ve said no rares at this points level..

      • The smaller board is a good point. I didn’t realize that the board was smaller, so the range isn’t quite as important. However, it can still affect being outside of the range of opposing archers for a turn, or short range sooner. I’ve never had much luck making 5+ or 6+ armour saves, so I tend to steer clear of the Sea Guard, but I know that some players who are better than be have used them to great effect.

        I’m not 100% sure what you mean by the loss of 5 attacks in close combat, though. The new book allows all High Elf units to fight in an additional rank (so 3 ranks with archers).

        I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on the new army book.

        • Just to be clear on the board size, we’re playing at 48″ square (rather than 48 x 72″) for the first couple of escalations so the difference in board size isn’t huge but it does have an effect laterally.

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