Monday, December 31, 2012

Battle Report on the End of the World

Skaven (John) vs Empire(bob)             2000pts

Skaven Queek Headtaker, Grey Seer, Chieftan BSB Linchebone pendant (6+ ward against war machine), Chieftan greatweapon, Warplock Engineer Lvl 1, 30 Clanrats shield full command, 30 clan rats full command shield, 40 clanrats full command, shields and spears, 30 Stormvermin = Queek Upgrade, shields and full command, 2 Rat Ogre Pack master, 15 Night Runners, 3 Jezzails, Warplock Lighting Cannon.

Empire: General Helm of Skaven Slayers, Plate shield lance barded horse talisman of preservation, Captain full plate BSB Wailing Banner, Wizard dispell scroll Lvl 2, Wizard lvl2, Halberdiers 29 full comand, 10 handgunners, 30 Swordsman full command, 30 Spearmen shields and full command, 9 Knights, 20 Greatswords full command, cannon, hellblaster

Empire Deployed first and went first,

Turn One, Empire Maneuver, Magic they Mystify Ogres who lose 3 stats off movement and other stuff, shooting gunners kill 2 NightRunners, Cannon kill 3 stormvermin. 

Skaven Turn One: Army moves foreword en mass. Magic the warlock engineer kills five halberdiers with warp lighting. Shooting jezzails kill a cannon crew member and the warplighting cannon kills a handgunner. 

Empire Turn Two: No movement. No magic to speak of. Regrowth gets dispelled. Shooting handgunners kill 2 more night runners, hellblaster kills 4 clanrats and the cannon killls five stormvermin with grapeshot.

Skaven Turn Two: Movement consists of charges. Nightrunners charge but fail fear test, clanrats 1 fail charge, stormvermin charge great swords, clanrat 2 charge spearmen, clanrat 3 (with spears) charge the knights. Magic: Engineer irresistibly casts warplightning on the hellblaster and no damage is done. Dimensional cascade as miscast result wounds the the engineer. Grey Seer casts Death Frenzy but it is dispelled. Combat: Nightrunners wound the bsb then flee after losing 6, night runners flee through rat ogres, halbrediers run them both down. Queek kills the Greatsword champion in a challenge with two overkill 6 more Greatswords die with 4 stormvermin killed in return and combat continues. Clanrat 2 kills two spearmen with no casualties in return, combat continues. Clanrat 3 manages no kills on the knights with the Empire general killing a clanrat.  

Empire Turn 3. Movement. The Swordsmen in the middle of Bob's army charge the not-so-large-anymore block of stormvermin in the flank, leaving them exposed to clanrat 1, Halbrediers alone on the flank move to get back in the battle. In the magic phase the Stormvermin are Withered dropping their toughness. During Combat the Stormvermin kill all but 2 of the greatswords and only lose 1 to the flanking swordsmen. Clanrat 2 kills 1 spearmen and lose one in return. The large spear wielding Clanrat 3 and the Chieftan kill three knights(booyah) and lose six in return, combat a wash, but looking good for the rats.

Skaven Turn 3. Clanrat 1 charge the swordsmen in the Flank. Magic, continues to contribute a wound or two with Scorch on the Handgunners, and then Death Frenzy on Clanrat 2, giving them +2 attacks but causing them to lose d6 models a turn. Shooting. Warplightning Cannon kills a halbredier with a weak shot, Jezzails kill a handgunner causing them to flee. Combat. Stormvermin and Clanrats force swordsment to flee, stormvermin turn, Clanrat 1 do not catch. Death Frenzied Clanrat 2 win but the Spearmen stay, end up losing 6 to death frenzy. Knights kill 3 clanrats with no losses returned, combat a wash.

End of Turn Three, Skaven Left Flank
End Of Turn Three, Skaven Right Flank

Summary So Far. Empire Sit in one place and suffer as knights don't get charge. Where they do end up moving helps them as the halbrediers and BSB run down both Night Runners and Rat Ogres in one go, leaving them open to do what they want. Magic does little, but ends up mattering a good bit at the end of the battle. Combat goes surprising well for the rats, especially vs the Knights. Queek and his upgraded Stormvermin prove worth their cost again. At this point things look very much in the favor of Rats at the end of three.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Some ruminations

Hey folks Bob here,

I figured I would actually post something for a change (a shock I know). Nothing too drastic, just some thoughts on the state of the hobby and a few ideas for things to come. First off I am sad to say I haven't gotten a whole lot done recently on the hobby front. I bad case of painting malaise has set in over the past few weeks and progress has been slow on project completion. Currently I am working on some Wolf Guard Terminators, Ragnar Blackmane, a Wolf Priest, some Cadian Guard, and Terminator Librarian for my Grey Knights, a Land Raider for the GK as well, and last but not least the limited edition Chaplin from the Dark Vengence box. It is a lot of stuff I know, but I find that having a lot of different projects going at once (when it isn't overwhelming) serves to break up the monotony of painting the same colors over and over again. I have been trying out some new techniques on my Guard to liven up the painting methodology (more on this later).

Also I have been doing a lot of hobby related reading as of late. I have been toying with the idea of doing some book reviews for some of my vast collection of Black Library novels so look for that in the near future. I think I will also start giving my thought to some of the more recent army books for both Warhammer and 40k. These won't be reviews per say, but rather a highlight of what I do and don't like about the books, my experiences with the armies, and what made my buy the book in the first place. Expect this as the first book I will be reviewing.

I also have a back log of historical minis to blather about so expect some Saxon v.s. Viking goodness in the future as well as a discussion of some 28mm scifi soldiers from Defiance Games and Wargames Factory.

 John and I recently played a game of Warhammer Fantasy so expect a battle report for that in the near future. As always happy gaming!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Reasons any Fantasy gamer should get Warhammer Total War

Honestly lets face it there is one major reason that a lot of people who may normally not get a total war game will get this one. because it is a WARHAMMER game, and I, I mean they, want to see their armies move around. I have seen some crazy &^% models, some that glow, make noise, can change positions/pieces (with help) and some that are just plain beautiful. But this takes it to a whole other level. Related to this is the fact that this will allow the most convenient form of trial and error, should I take this unit or that, is this item worth it and so on. Don't lie to me, you will do this, at least once. Of course then whenever you have sculpted your perfect digital army and translate it to the real world it probably wont work.

There is a couple reasons this won't work. One the computer mechanics can add more variance within the attributes beyond a scale of 1-10, and it will do all the computations that we dont want to take the time to work out in the real world. I love this. a dwarfs attacks have to be delivered with more force than a goblins, yet he has a 3, just like a goblin for strength. Hopefully the comp takes it to the next level dwarf strength =39 while goblin equals 30. The next issue is balancing wont work the same as far as unit selection, I imagine you will be able to field broke as h3ll armies in the computer games, it will happen, and guess what the comp will have at least as broke an army, but it wont be just one, it will have 5 of them roaming. (not counting what they will have if they allow major chaos invasions)

Your hand

Computer's hand

Next the comp will not be able to be a kunning as your opponent, and eventually you and I will figure how to beat the comp easily with weaker and weaker armies. Maybe the last reason is the scale of the unit sizes. most inf blocks in Fantasy are 20ish, but might range up to 40 or beyond, I am looking at you Zombies, Skeletons, Slaves, Goblins, Marauders, while in Warhammer Total War the units will likely range in the 100s. Yes they will let you scale the size within the game, but i wont do this. If I have the comp to run it my units will be as big as I can make them. 
So to wrap up. 1. to see your army scaled in size. 2. to see your army scaled and very beautiful. 3. to see the brokeset army the game will let you come up with. 4. hopefully some built in balancing on performance and attributes to make the fighting more 'realistic or loreistic'. 5. Maybe just maybe you can get the good guys to win one.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

A few 'problems' with Warhammer Total War

Ok as much as I love the idea of this game, I have some problems with it. 
First, this is the first time Creative Assembly has reached out to do something beyond history based games. While the Warhammer Fantasy World has a rich history, vivid maps and many different races this is still different from what the teams at Creative Assembly do. Some things will be quite new to them, magic, magical creatures, magic items and so forth. I hope they get it right.
Secondly, this is the third(or so) major franchise GW has taken part in, and I have to say i am not completely satisfied with the results. Dawn of War started as a true rts with a nice storyline that I really liked, the introduction of all the different units. In the next Dawn of Wars expansions and into the second I liked them less and less as it became an rts/rpg bastardization that failed at both. You no longer built an army, and you gathered up loot and whatnot and your guys leveled, but it never really sold me, and the storyline(s) got lost. A Total War is a completely different beast than Dawn of War and the pure RPG of Space Marine, which brings me to my third point
Thirdly: when is this period of Total War set? Bob and I have pondered this, I think it should be the 'right now' in the Warhammer world that the rule book sets up for, where everybody is preparing for war, and the good guys are organized and have a strong leader, perfect for you to step in and become the Emperor, High King, Phoenix King, Wood King and Duke or whatever Bretonia has. Bob had suggested doing it set in the past, maybe around one of the Big chaos invasions, or after this last big one. Problem I have with this idea is I dont want to get steam rolled as in Medieval 2 Total War, where the Mongols and their elephant cousins the Timrids show up late in the game as an unstoppable juggernaut that oddly always comes straight after you. I dont want the mongols to make an appearance, and this would be way to much of an advantage for someone playing as Chaos, as if they didnt have enough already. 
Fourthly: What are the victory conditions for the races? Is it mere survival for the good guys, as they never really should be able to completely table the bad guys? For the bad guys is it just wiping the Empire off the face of the map, or the Dwarves or the High Elves and so on and so forth? And as everything GW has always been about several players playing together, if several friends get together and do a campaign, even if they are all good guys how do you get their victory conditions to line up?
So to some it up I am worried about how they will balance fun while sticking to the Fantasy Lore?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

More thoughts on Warhammer Total War

To continue on possibilities for Warhammer Total War, I would really like to see the non playable races in Warhammer the table top game, make a good appearance in Warhammer Total War. Kiev, Norsc, Estalia and Tilea, Araby and the Border Princes. I don't think they will or should be playable races in the game. But I think they should be factions within that influence events, just as there are any number of unplayable factions in the other Total Wars. I would ,however, like to see some more advanced diplomacy with these factions that grant you the ability to recruit some of their units. 

you knew this was coming, and admit it your are not particularly against the idea

Yes bear cavalry from kiev, maybe their snow wizards. Estalia and Tilea pike men and crossbowmen. Araby some scimitar wielding troops, and maybe some heavy cav from the Border Princes. At the least I would like to see these factions in there. Then there are several factions I would like to see as trade points, Ind and Cathay, and then have several trade points for the scattered High Elf empire. 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Warhammer Total War, or as I know it, WARHAMMER TOTAL WAR!!!!!!!!!

So a couple weeks ago two of my favorite companies I love to waste my time and money on decided they are going to get together and have this nerd's dream child. No real details are out, release date, style, details, playable races and so forth, but I am already incredibly jacked. In fact Bob and I have been talking about the need for a Warhammer Total War game. It is already perfectly set up for a Total War, the races are laid out, the map is pretty much worked out, how units perform against each other, and how much they are worth is already set up, Creative Assembly just needs to translate that stuff to the computer. Warhammer Total War could easily be my favorite computer game ever. I have loved pretty much all of the Total Wars, and thanks to Steam I know that I have 588 hours on Empire Total War, I can imagine that I will spend at least this much time on Warhammer Total War whenever it comes out. Even if the game doesn't live up to unrealistic standards I have in my mind, I will buy it.

What I want to see is all the races playable with all the different units Warhammer already has. I wouldn't mind terribly if the first release only held the races considered in the Old World, Empire, Dwarves, Brettonia, Wood Elves, Beastmen, Skaven, Chaos, Orks, Ogre and Vampire Counts. Then they could do DLCs for the other half(ish), hopefully releasing them and their lands all together, Lizardmen, High Elves, Dark Elves, Tomb Kings. I imagine the map system could work largely like it does in Empire Total War, with the main area being the Old World, then separate maps for the New World and Tomb King areas.