Tuesday, 17 November 2020

Game 149 - Goblins - 2020/11/17

Goblins!!!

Greetings! 

In the third round of the Rage of Isolation 2 tournament I played against Stephen who this time played with Goblins (Stephen often plays with Salamanders these days). 

I played against Stephen once but long time ago and back then, he was playing with Kingdoms of Men. If you are interested in a bit of history, here is the battle report from the battle played 4 years ago!


I was thus very curious about this game, with new army, new edition etc. The army Stephen designed for this event is quite interesting and nothing like I played against before. Here are the details:

Goblins - Army List

Rabble Legion (R1), Infantry - 180

Rabble Horde (R2), Infantry - 125
Rabble Horde (R3), Infantry - 125
Trolls Horde (T), Large Infantry, Dwarven Ale - 205

Mawbeast Pack* Regiment (MP1), Cavalry - 120
Mawbeast Pack* Regiment (MP2), Cavalry - 120

War-Trombone (WT1), War Engine - 65
War-Trombone (WT2), War Engine - 65
Big Rocks Thrower (RT1), War Engine - 90
Big Rocks Thrower (RT2), War Engine - 90

Goblin Blaster (GB1), Monster (Chariot) - 65
Goblin Blaster (GB2), Monster(Chariot) - 65
Winggit (W), Monster, Eye in the Sky - 130

Biggit (B1), Hero (Cavalry) - 80
Biggit (B2), Hero (Cavalry) - 80
King (K), Hero (Cavalry) - 105
King on Chariot (KoC), Hero (Chariot), Pipes of Terror - 140

This army has 17 units, 10 of which are scoring and the combined total of the unit strength is 23. By comparison, my army has 12 elements, 11 of which are scoring, with 21 total unit strength. As expected, I am outnumbered but interestingly, I seemed to have a slight advantage in the number of scoring units. 

It created an interesting dilemma for me. If I were to focus on the scoring enemy units, the war engines and mobile heroes would have been able to use their ranged attacks to great effect. That alone is a problem as my units are fragile and even a few hits may result in wavering. 

If I were to try and eliminate the war engines and nimble heroes, I may divert the units from the main fights and risk being overwhelmed there. Especially if the access to war engines would not have been easy.

I came to the conclusion that I would still need to try and get rid of the war engines first. Shooting is always a biggest threat to my mobile army. If I can silence or significantly reduce them, then I should have a better chance to set up combined charges.

Here is my army for comparison.

Outcasts - Army List

Stormwind Cavalry Regiment (S), Cavalry, Chalice of Wrath - 230
Palace Guard Regiment (PG1), Infantry - 160
Palace Guard Regiment (PG2), Infantry - 160
Forest Shamblers* Regiment (FS1), Large Infantry - 120
Forest Shamblers* Regiment (FS2), Large Infantry - 120
Drakon Riders* Regiment (DR1), Large Cavalry, Staying Stone - 170
Drakon Riders* Regiment (DR2), Large Cavalry - 165

Silverbreeze Cavalry* (SB1), Cavalry - 130
Silverbreeze Cavalry* (SB2), Cavalry - 130

Lord on Drakon (DL1), Hero (Large Cavalry), Mead of Madness - 180
Lord on Drakon (DL2), Hero (Large Cavalry) - 170
Elven Archmage (A), Hero (Infantry), Inspiring Talisman, Lightning Bolt (5) - 115


Terrain

Terrain Details


Deployment and Scenario

Elves vs Goblins - Deployment of the Armies

In this game we played Invade as a scenario. I knew I would be outnumbered so I decided to play weighted flank. The plan was to break through on the right and slow down the enemy on the left. I kept Stormwind cavalry behind blocking terrain to avoid being shot at but also to see where would I need that reserve the most. If the right was going well, I could help Drakons, Shamblers and Lord to hold off the enemy. If not, I would move to the right to weight in and tip the balance into my favour.

The challenge lied in the fact that this flank was quite tough to break through. The Rabble Legion and Regiment could hold on against the charge of my units. And then I had to deal with Trombones and Blasters. That's the reason I placed by shooters there as well, so that I could at least soften some of the enemy units before the melee.

Stephen won the roll off and chose to take first turn.

Goblins - Turn 1

Goblins begun the Invasion!


Goblins advanced eagerly, a bit more cautiously on the left but at the double on the right, using the hill as a cover. Only Winggit flew at full speed forward and acted as a spotter for the artillery. It worked very well as the Drakons were barraged by unexpectedly accurate fire and sustained heavy casualties.


Outcasts - Turn 1

Elves focus the shooting at the Winggit.


Elves responded by defensive actions on the left and advance on the right. The shooters aimed at the Winggit to stop him from helping the artillery. At the same time, the Stormwind cavalry moved to the right as it seemed that their help would be more needed there.

Goblins - Turn 2

The fights started early


Goblins decided to attack first. Rabble run over the hill to attack Palace Guard while the Legion, with the help of the King on a Chariot, routed the Forest Shamblers. One of the Biggits attacked Drakon Riders and managed to ground them. The fight was clearly pushed into Elven territory.

Outcasts - Turn 2

Stormwind joins the fight.


Elves attempt to seize the initiative! On the left, Drakon Lord swoops over the enemies to get into a position for the attack against the artillery that proved to be such a problem. Silverbreeze in the centre managed to shoot down stubborn Winggit too, so Elves hoped it would limit the efficiency of the enemy ranged attacks.

The main charge came in the form of the combined attacks of the Palace Guard and Stormwind cavalry but despite significant damage, the horde of Rabble held! 

Goblins - Turn 3

Goblins send in more troops!


Mawbeasts and Trolls attacked isolated Forest Shamblers on the left and routed them on the charge. Despite the lack of the Winggit, the artillery hit badly damaged Drakons and they have had enough too.

The units on the right attacked as well. While the Rabble horde counter attacked another Palace Guard regiment (and inflicted some serious damage!), the shooters hit Elven troops hard as well.

Outcasts - Turn 3

Another Elven attack.

With the collapse of the units on the left, Elves had to double their efforts. The Drakon Lord on the left charged one of the war engines and destroyed it. One down, one to go! Silverbreeze in the centre followed the suit and destroyed one of the trombones. 

Palace Guard and Stormwind finished the stubborn Rabble horde while second Drakon Lord and Drakon Riders covered their flank. Unfortunately for Elves, they were not able to break Mawbeasts there and had to brace for the counter attack.

Goblins - Turn 4

Goblins begin the outflanking


Goblins begun the outflanking of the Elven force and to do it successfully, the Rabble legion was tasked with holding the Stormwind in place. In addition, the Trombone wavered nearby Palace Guard which meant they would not be able to fight for a while.

On the right flank both blasters discharged their load onto the Drakon Lord but he survived! The Drakon Riders were not that lucky, however, and were routed by the pack of vicious Mawbeasts.

Outcasts - Turn 4

Stormwind gets stuck

Stormwind cavalry had no option but to attack alone. The damage done was not great unfortunately and although the legion had enough bodies to hold anyway, every point of damage counted for the next rounds.

The Archmage and the Drakon Lord did their job, however, by routing Mawbeasts and destroying artillery, respectively. It took some pressure off for sure.

Goblins - Turn 5

Palace Guard wavers again!


The flanking force marched from the left towards the centre while the legion kept fighting. The damage done was minimal but it was important that the Stormwind was pinned down. The Palace Guard regiment was wavered again which made things very difficult for Elves.

Outcasts - Turn 5

Stormwind fails miserably


Elves divided the efforts between two main tasks. First, shoot at the advancing flanking enemies. That was successful when the pack of Mawbeasts was destroyed. 

Second, to clear the path to the enemy territory. While Silverbreeze removed the Trombone, the Stormwind cavalry failed to inflict much damage and the legion of Rabble continued blocking the way. 

Goblins - Turn 6

Elves lose more units again.


Trolls lead the attack against badly wounded Place Guard and elite Elven infantry is not able to hold the ground anymore. The little shooting that Goblins have left was still sufficient to rout Silverbreeze troop too.

Outcasts - Turn 6

Last attempt to change the outcome of the battle.

(Edit: I forgot to take a screenshot of the last turn so the details may not be the most accurate. However, the outcome was as shown.)

In the last attempt to swing the balance into their favour, Elves decided to gamble. Stormwind finally defeated the Rabble but had to reform to face the Trolls. 

In the meantime, the Drakon Lords attack both Goblin heroes to deprive the enemy of inspiring presence. Unfortunately, that plan worked only partially. 

It was now up to the shooters to rout the Trolls and secure a draw. Unfortunately, despite the damage that gave some hope for success, the Trolls were not in the mood to give up.

With that attempt failed, Elves had to concede a defeat and withdrew.

Summary

Turn by turn animation summary

After-battle

Congratulations to Stephen for a well deserved victory and many thanks for a great game! He did very well in making sure the fights occurred in my half of the battle field. He also stalled the advance of my regiments long enough to successfully invade enemy territory. I must say I like his version of the Goblin army a lot, as it is very versatile and diverse force. It requires good co-ordination of different elements rather than relying on single arm, e.g. shooting.

I was happy in general, as I think I had a fighting chance. The shooting worked quite well and I just needed a bit of luck in a few fights. I think turn 2 was the one where the odds were good to rout the Rabble horde. The following turns where PG was wavered and Stormwind had to hack through the Rabble legion also contributed to the fact I was not able to invade enemy territory early and with sufficient force.

If I were to change something I think I would have deployed better on the left. I wonder if hiding all three units behind the forest was not an option, with just a tilt to be able to intercept the Winggit. However, that would mean the artillery would shoot at the units on the right instead. In any case it would have helped to have them alive for one more turn at least. 

As always, I am curious how would you play if given the command of any of the featured armies and if there is something in particular that you thing either of us should have done differently.

Thanks for reading!

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