Saturday 23 May 2015

Game 86 - Lizardmen - 2013/11/25

Game 5 - Bounty Hunt - Lizardmen - Alex

After 3 wins and a draw (which was technically a win :)) I was still in good position to place well and as I have found out after the tournament, at this stage I was among 6 players who were fighting for top 3. Talk about some pressure! On top of that I was about to face Alex, whom I have never met before but I knew is very strong player.

The scenario was relatively simple Battle line but with a nice twist. You got extra points for the enemy general, bsb or standards according to the following rules:

1. Did you capture more Standards that your opponent? - 1BP or 0.5 BP each if tied
2. Did you slay your opponents general? - 1BP
3. Did you slay your opponents BSB? - 1BP
4. Did you keep your General alive? - 1BP
5. Did you keep your BSB alive? - 1BP

I think it was a good scenario, that encouraged more aggressive approach and ensured that players didn't play defensively in their last game of the tournament. It was also a good motivation for attacking when you simply wanted to gamble and try to get extra points so that you place better.

Alex brought Lizardmen but it was a different army to the one I played the day before.

Lizardmen - Army List

Slann, level 4, BSB, Loremaster, Channeling Staff, 3 channels per turn
Scar Veteran, Cold One, Stegadon Helm, Dawnstone (?)
Scar Veteran, Cold One
Skink Chief on Terradon, 2+ armour, explosive egg!
Skink Priest

30+ Saurus Warriors
, Full Command
10 Skink Skirmishers
10 Skink Skirmishers
10 Skink Skirmishers

30+ Temple Guard, Full Command
3 Terradon Riders
3 Terradon Riders
Salamander Pack
Salamander Pack

A very tough list. Big blocks preserve points well and are not that easy to take down, also owing to the presence of the Scar Veterans. Slann with the knowledge of all signature spells as well as 3 channeling attempts per turn on 5+ is a very good spell caster. And with excellent protection in TG unit he is hard to get. Hence, in this particular scenario I had very small chances to get bonus points for the enemy general and bsb in one.

The Lizardmen army also had very good support troops. 7 light units in total + flying character are there to ensure nothing would stall the advance of the phalanx and were perfectly expendable if need be.

I decided I will try to put as much distance in between the armies (and characters in particular) and focus on the flank where I expected Saurus Warriors are to be. I thought I had a chance to win against that unit if I thin it down and if I send enough regiments against it. I also needed to slow down and divert Temple Guard. In order to do so I needed to win the support units war relatively quickly so that is why I tried to use cavalry on the flanks.


Armies after vanguard
Forces ready to fight!

As expected, Lizardmen formed a strong centre and put skink clouds around to serve as ablative armour. There were some vanguard moves here and there but in general units didn't really jump forward that much.

Alex won the roll-off and his was the first turn.

Lizardmen - Turn 1
Coldblooded steamroller picks up the momentum!
First blood for Lizards!

Slann blinked and entire army moved as one. Skink Chiefe led terradon riders who dropped their bombs on ellyrian reavers. Luckily for elves they were swift enough to avoid majority of the explosives and the unit was still in the game.

Then Slann focused his mind through his servant and living vassal and duelled elven Loremaster in the battle of minds. This time the millennia of existence and constant meditations prevailed and elven general fell dead to the ground.

(Edit: A mistake on my part as I somehow forgot (again!) about the ability of Slann to use skink priest as a vessel. Thinking my characters are still save I dispelled fireball instead and was left with no dice to prevent Spirit Leach. My dice rolling skills were also far worse than my opponent's and I lost the roll off 5:1 that meant one dead Loremaster. Not a great start, in particular, where there are extra points for killed general.)

Outcasts - Turn 1
Elves keep fighting
Wide manoeuvers on the flanks

Elves move fast on flanks. On the West Reavers charge Terradons who elect to flee but where caught by swooping eagle. On the East units moved to threaten enemy's flank if the main units choose to approach Elven centre. Shooting brought down few Saurus but unfortunately for Elves bolt directed at skink chief either missed or were deflected by his armour.

Lizardmen - Turn 2
Lizardmen keep pressing forward
Battle of light troops continues

Lizardmen army didn't stop its advance. Light troops in particular where very active. On the East skink chief made a long charge against the eagle claw and despite the valiant resistance, elven crew was slain. The chief overrun into nearby White Lions.

The skirmishers and Salamander combined their efforts and some more elves died due to poisonous javelins or salamander's fire.

Outcasts - Turn 2
Envelopment on the East
And collapse of the Western flank (a little mistake, ER2 should be further to the flank)

Elves tried to attack on both flanks but only one unit of skinks was chased away by the eagle on the West. Dragon Princes could not catch the salamander as it fled behind the phalanx of Suarus warriors. And then another disaster happened.

Skink chief, seeing grim hunters surrounding him, produced magical egg and broke it. That resulted in the powerful explosion that claimed all elven warriors in an instant!

(Edit: Dice rolling skills are very important. Alex not only rolled a 5 to get maximum strength but he also proceeded to roll 11 on 2d6. So, 11 S5 hits later there was one happy skink chief and no trace of White Lions.)

To add insult to injury two nearby units panicked. Elves were pushed to the corner!

Lizardmen - Turn 3
Lizardmen in relentless approach
More elven units die

While main regiments of the Lizardmen army approach, the light troops and Slann continue to throw missiles of ordinary and magical kind. As a result many elves die and fewer and fewer regiments remain on the field of battle.

Outcasts - Turn 3
Elves keep pushing on the flanks
But things do not look that good for Elves at all

Heavy cavalry attacked again but only the unit on the West managed to fight as their enemies held. On the East salamanders repeated the manoeuver and fled to the safety behind Saurus block.

Lizardmen - Turn 4
Lizardmen press hard
Temple Guard catches Shadow Warriors!

Scar Veteran charges out of his unit and makes a long charge to pin down Sea Guard and elven BSB. The grip tightens when Temple Guard charges Shadow Warriors who do not escape. (Edit: It was a combination of my bad luck and my opponent's luck. I rolled 1+2 for a flee reaction and Alex got 11 (or something high) to catch my unit. I think we made a slight mistake as TG should have stopped where the unit was caught but still it was way too close to my units and put me in a very dangerous situation. I also can't recall what happened to White Lions. I believe they died fighting but at the same time this charge would not be possible if Scar Veteran charged out of the unit. Clearly I mixed up something.)

What would you do? - part 1

During that turn the following situation occurred. Alex declared his charges and proceeded to move the other regiments. However, after a while he noticed he didn't declare the charge with TG against Shadow Warriors. and asked if I minded if he charged. I didn't and allowed him to make that very dangerous charge. What would you do in my place? Would you allow it?

Outcasts - Turn 4
Small victory
Elves were in desperate situation. Great Eagle landed to block Temple Guard. Bob the BSB gulped his magical potion and in a fantastic display of heroism, challenged saurus veteran to single combat and slayed him! A small victory at last.

Cavalry closed towards Saurus Warriors and Swordmasters with Sea Guard reformed.

Lizardmen - Turn 5
Elves surrounded
Yet another grievous mistake

Saurus Warriors spotted exposed flank of the Swordmasters and made a successful charge. Even warriors of Hoeth were not able to withstand such pressure and fled. Temple Guard killed the eagle and overrun into Sea Guard. Elves were truly surrounded.

What would you do? - part 2

Another situation occurred where I would like to ask you about your opinion and course of action you would take in my place. Alex charged the eagle and overrun into Sea Guard. At this time the Sea Guard and Swordmasters were still lined up. Alex made a wheel so that Skink Priest didn't touch any Sea Guard. I pointed out, that it cannot be done this was as otherwise it would touch Swordmasters. Alex disagreed and claimed they would not as they are ... 1mm further than the front of the Sea Guard.

So, what would you do?

Outcasts - Turn 5
High Elves attack
But it is too late

Dragon Princes and Swordmasters attack Saurus from both sides but Lizardmen remain steadfast. Temple Guard destroys Sea Guard in an uneven fight. Archers caught fleeing Salamander but again, it was just a small victory that didn't really matter in the battle.

Lizardmen - Turn 6
Skink pepper archers with poisonous javelins and remaining elves flee
It was clear that the battle was won by Lizardmen. Steadfast Saurus Warriors kept fighting against Elves, their toughness and strength magically enhanced since the beginning of combat. Skink Skirmishers threw poisonous javelins at the archers who had enough and fled the battle.

Outcasts - Turn 6

In the last effort Elves tried to break Saurus Warriors but failed. Few survivors of the elven army left the battle field. They day was lost!

 photo output_7O6ZLG_zpsjojvai8c.gif
Turn-by-turn summary animation

After-battle thoughts

Unfortunately for me the last game of the tournament was a huge loss. I played like a muppet and deserved to lose. Alex played solid game and his use of fast troops in particular was superb. Such a pity he decided to bring up that 1mm silliness. 

I have made many very bad mistakes and they were ruthlessly exploited. First of all, I should have been more careful with the Loremaster. I can't believe I let that spell through and didn't see it coming.

But the whole plan was in my opinion flawed. The scenario granted bonus points for the general and bsb so I should have kept them separate. By having them together I helped my opponent to get them both easier. I also should have deployed in a more uniform way with shooting centre and fighting flanks. That would force my opponent (I think) to either choose one or divide his forces. Could have helped in the support troops war too.

My crowded deployment on the right flank, further messed up by fleeing troops and slow movement there meant I was cornered. Then I made another stupid mistake by focusing on Temple Guard and exposing the flank of Swordmasters. It allowed to corner Sea Guard even more and let Saurus Warriors escape the envelopment by heavy cavalry.

I needed better luck in the last combat but unfortunately it was not enough. A few unlucky moments during the game only added to the whole disaster.

I wish I could have provided more entertaining game to read about. Especially, that it was the last game of the tournament. However, I also think it is good to report the games where one makes serious mistakes to show what can happen and that it should be avoided at all cost in the future games.

Tournament Summary

I was really happy I managed to go for another interstate tournament. :) It is great fun and a fantastic chance to meet new people. I really enjoy that aspect of the event. Castle Assault is indeed a tournament like no other with even stronger emphasis on fun factor. That is why you could have army swap, that is why the winner of the previous CA had to drink from special mug and that is why you had a lot of other things happening! :D

From the strict gaming point of view it was a great tournament too. Varied scenarios always add to the positive experience in my opinion. I liked the modifications with Battle Points which gave a chance to get something extra and changed the focus of the game. If I only remembered chariots cannot charge buildings! :lol:

So fantastic job for TO's and well done to anybody who was involved! =D> Great venue and I really appreciate the fact one has always an opportunity to buy a cold beer at the site! It was also great to see that there is nice co-operation between clubs and people helped out TO's with terrain. I hope next time there will be even more of these as some tables looked a little too empty in my opinion. More different things on the table always add to the game so hopefully whatever you guys have to use will multiply until next year! :)

Once again, I would like to thank my opponents and congratulations to them all for their own personal achievements. =D>

In general, I am happy with my performance. I of course regret some of the mistakes and the fact I didn't put up a better fight in game 5. I had a feeling Alex had it too easy :) But lesson learned, hopefully! I had 3 wins, 1 draw (technically a win!) and a loss which is a result I cannot complain about at all. It gave me 11th placing, 0.5 a point short of top 10! Not too bad but I know I can do better :)

Thanks for reading!



  1. First off: Great tournament for you! 11th is spectacular, something to be proud of and makes you want to improve even more!

    The skink priest-slann relationship is something that I always forget. It might be beneficial to have a notebook and write down things like that for each army that are tough to remember. Brettonians have a banner that gives +d6 on the first charge I think that always slips my mind. These little things can be the difference between a W and an L. You are writing mistakes down on this blog so that makes you a better player, but sometimes there are weird little interactions/items that are easy to miss that I wish I had written down in one place (items that make you switch stat lines (Van Horsemans Speculum?) being one other example.

    As far as your what would you do questions; it's complicated but this is my thought process:

    1. Final game of a tournament where you are pretty sure you are in the running for a top spot. You have to take a look at where the game is at that moment. If they forget a charge and you are already losing badly, I'd let them take it. Even though it shouldn't, not letting them take that charge affects your sportsmanship score. If the game is close and that charge can swing the tide of the battle, I wouldn't let them. At a big tournament when competing for a top spot, you can politely explain to an opponent that tournaments are there to test high-level play, and part of what separates high level play is minimizing your own mistakes and exploiting mistakes made by an opponent. You can't be sure he would have let you go back and make that charge, so in tournaments that take entry fees, I usually play it by the book.

    In a friendly game; however, I always let my opponent take that charge. But how many times in life will you have an opportunity for the top spot? I would regret letting my opponent take that charge if it had an impact on the outcome in a tournament setting.

    2. This one is a bit easier. My understanding of the rule is that an overrun is a special pursuit move. Normally during a pursuit move, you follow all rules the same as if they were a normal charge which allows the wheel. The overrun is special in that the unit first MUST MOVE 2d6 STRAIGHT FORWARD and then you treat it like a normal pursuit move which essentially means that the overrunning unit closes the door after contacting the enemy with their straight forward move. That is my interpretation.

    Even in a friendly game, I grab the rulebook in this case. There is a big difference between a charge that is legal but out of order and an illegal move/overrun.

    As I said, well done my friend!

    1. Hi Dan,

      Thanks a lot! I was very happy with the final standing in general even if I lost 3rd spot I had after day 1. The sour taste in my mouth was left though because I forgot about building vs chariot in game 4 and had that silly situation in game 5.

      Without getting into too many details I basically felt bad because I let my opponent do something out of turn and I was taken advantage of because I was kind. My opponent didn't understand that I am afraid, which was a pity because he was clearly a better player in terms of pure game skills and outside a tournament he seemed like a nice person. I just wish he was also better sport.