Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Battle Report - Harad vs Galadrim

Last Thursday Jonathan and I played my first game of the league. It was a reprise of the game from the week before, his Galadrim led by Glorfindel and Rumil against my Haradrim. I was tripped up at the last second by the League rule that you can only ally one faction into your army, a rule I believe we should change, by the way. Consequently I was forced to drop my Far Harad and went with a list that consisted of Bob the Budget Nazgul, a Haradrim King, a Haradrim Chieftan, a Haradrim Task Master, a banner, a hornblower, six fat guys (Abrakhan Merchant's Guards), fourteen archers and the rest spears for a total model count of 56. We played Domination with the MitM change of only three objectives.

I had a big hill in my deployment zone. there was a ruins between my zone and the objective to my left. The rest of the terrain, of which there was a lot, did not really factor in the game so I'll leave it off. I made a lot of mistakes in this game. Jonathan only made a couple. He, again, got a well deserved win with a minor victory. One more turn would have given me the minor but two more would have made it his game again. This was a real nail biter and I found myself thinking about it quite a bit the next day, which is the mark of a great game, to me.

We started off with a general advance on the part of the elves towards the left and center objectives. The elven phalanx headed towards the left while the cavalry and archers, with Glorfindel riding along, went towards the center. I left my archers behind the hill, firing in volleys most of the game (mistake number 2, I waited way too long to start firing directly). I split my force with a strong infantry force heading towards the left objective and a smaller force going over the hill and towards the center, (mistake number 1. I shouldn't have split them the way I did and had too many high value units in this group with no meat shields.)

My volley fire was average over the course of the game but started out strong. I killed both knight archers and another model in the first round. I got rid of most of his highly prized archers over the course of the game with volley fire. Jonathan killed all of my fat guys with arrows, a very disapointing development but well deserved the way I left them hanging out in view.

I pushed my infantry up into the ruins, about twelve inches short of the left objective, and stayed there. This was where Jonathan made the only real mistake of the game. He brought his phalanx up and charged me. Between the wall bonus and some good use of transfix/compel, I kept Glorfindel out of the fight, killed Rumil and managed to bounce the phalanx. Jonathan realized that he didn't need to fight me and pulled back to the objective, still too strong for me to sally out and contest him.

He also shifted his archers and remaining knights to hold the other two objectives. this is when I realized that the reason I was feeling outnumbered was that I had 15 models hiding behind the hill. I marched my archers out to contest the center and right objectives. Killing Rumil had made me a happy little Haradrim. I had also put a wound on Glorfindel with a Black Dart, something generally frowned upon in tournament play. Most players consider it too risky for too little pay off. Now Glorfindel found himself facing down a haradrim gatling gun of fourteen poisoned bow shots. This is where I made mistake number 3. I rolled all the dice at once. I killed the hell out Asfaloth but didn't have enough left to finish off the elf, though I did put another wound on him. I would have been better off taking the individual shots. The reason I did this is becase it was almost 2100 and I had Rhys (7yrs old) with me. I had already gotten a testy phone call from Mama and 2100 is closing time, though Chris very nicely and characteristically offered to keep the store open for us. So I was rushed. I took another turn to kill Glorfindel. Another moral victory in my eyes.

I managed to take the right objective and was one turn away from having more models on the center objective. I had broken but my hornblower more than paid for himself. Jonathan was one model away from breaking. I had moved my Nazgul up so his phalanx would be taking break tests with no heros on a -1 courage. He was moving troops up to the center objective, who would start arriving a turn after I controlled it. We survived the roll on the first turn after I was broken but the second one ended the game.

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