Monday 26 October 2015

KoW Game 4 - Basileans - 2015/10/26


I had another opportunity to play KoW recently. My good friend, Darth Sabre, was interested in giving it a go and chose Basileans, one of the main factions in Mantica, that is unique to this world. I was glad to face them as it is always good to learn more about my own force when fighting against variety of opponents.

Basileans - Army List

40 Men-at-Arms, Horde, Spears & Shields - 225
- 5 Paladin Knights, Troop - 135
- 5 Paladin Knights, Troop - 135
- 5 Sisterhood Panter Lancers, Troop - 115
- Priest, Hero, mounted, Bane Chant - 105

40 Crossbowmen, Horde, Jar of the Four Winds (+12" range) - 250

6 Elohi, Horde - 300
- Ur-Elohi, Hero, Ensorcelled Armor (+1 Defense) - 215

20 Paladin Foot Guard, Regiment - 150
- High Paladin on Griffin, Hero - 210

20 Paladin Foot Guard, Regiment - 150

Basilileans army has that feel of pious and angelic warriors in shiny armor about them and I think Darth's army captured it nicely. The mounted and foot Paladins rode to war inspired by a Priest and High Paladin and were accompanied by Elohi and Ur-Elohi Angles as well as some regular troops formed in two hordes.

The army wide rule (I must say I really like that each list has one) is called Blessed Be The Pious and means that the units have Iron Resolve special rule, i.e. if the unit is Steady as a result of nerve test it regains one point of damage previously suffered. I like the fact that although the army wide rule has some characteristic name it really is one of the special rules from the core rules. In the case of Basileans it simply means they can heal themselves a little bit. Since each of the character also has Heal(3) ability it means these guys can take some damage and keep fighting.

40 Men-at-Arms - one of the main battle line units, these men-at-arms form proper phalanx with their shields and spears and that is not good news for my cavalry at all. With very good nerve they can take some damage before they are even remotely worried and with 30 attacks even the best armored units on my side might be in danger.

5 Paladin Knights - Darth got two of these and it was interesting to compare them against my own Stormwind cavalry. Elves are faster and hit a little bit more often due to Elite rule. Paladin Knights seem to have better nerve though and are also Headstrong which means they have a chance to ignore waver effect. I was curious to see how both armies will use their respective knights.

5 Sisterhood Panter Lancers - it is Basilean's version of light cavalry, very fast and nimble but unlike Silverbreez they are combat orientated. They have Thunderous Charge (1) and Vicious that helps to go through with their attacks. However, they are also very lightly armored and may be vulnerable to enemy fire.

Priest - mounted priest was there to support with his heal or bane chant but also to inspire.

40 Crossbowmen - another horde but this time of shooters. 20 attacks is something to be concerned with but I was glad to notice they are also re-load and Range 5+ so that their effectiveness can be limited. No wonder Darth gave them extra range so that he does not have to move them much and have enemies in range. With crushing strength these shooters will do damage for sure so I had to be careful and don't give them many juicy targets.

6 Elohi - the best unit of the army, these angelic warriors are the most dangerous opponent. They don't waver and hit very hard. They are also Inspiring which is amazing on its own as it is already relatively hard to rout them with Defense 5+ and nerve -/17. As they fly I will need to be careful about places they can land. I also presumed they could be used as a counter to my drakons too as in general, my fliers are not as tough and hard hitting.

Ur-Elohi - the toughest model in the army, can easily take on my troops on its own. But serves a lot of secondary purposes too since it inspires and heals. As flying large infantry it is extremely fast but easier to hide and could be used for individual missions such as war machine hunting. At the same time it can help wherever it is needed the most. I absolutely love such flexible and versatile characters.

20 Paladin Foot Guard - another regiment that can be directly compared to one of my own - Palace Guard. In this case it is even more interesting than between heavy cavalry. Paladins are slower but better armored. Guard is faster, hits more often and has Crushing Strength. Then, Paladins are Headstrong which means they are more likely to keep fighting. Again, I was really curious to see how respective units are going to perform and what roles will they be assigned.

High Paladin on Griffin - last but not least, there is another of super fast but flexible characters in Basilean army. It has one more attack than Ur-Elohi and better nerve but defense 5+. They look very similar so I wonder how would they be utilized in the game.

Here is my own army list for comparison although I haven't changed it since the last game against Orcs.

Outcasts - Army List

10 Stormwind, Regiment, Potion of the Caterpillar (Pathfinder)  - 235
- 5 Silverbreeze, Troop - 145
- 5 Silverbreeze, Troop - 145
- Drakon Rider Lord, Hero, Large Cavalry - 160

3 Drakon Riders, Regiment - 175
- 5 Stormwind, Troops - 140
- Bolt Thrower, War Machine - 90

20 Palace Guard, Regiment - 150
- 10 Archers - 115
- 10 Archers - 115
- Bolt Thrower, War Machine - 90

20 Spearelves, Regiment - 140
- Elven Mage, Inspire, Bane Chant - 110

20 Spearelves, Regiment - 140
- Battle Standard Bearer, Hero - 50

In general, I have a slight advantage in speed over Basileans if you compare units of the same type. I also have 15 elements against 11 of the enemy but I have a feeling they have better staying power with more units that have Defense 5+ and I have none of 6+ as well as hordes that can soak up some damage. I have more and dispersed shooting which I like because that would allow me to use it against many targets at the same time.

Basileans have more and harder fliers though so I think they can really balance out my speed and numbers advantage.

My aim was, before I took terrain into account, to use my shooting to start taking away troops and hopefully create some holes in the battle line which I could then exploit. Even if these troops were not routed I would have better chance to do so in melee. I was prepared to lose some of my own troops, even one per turn due to crossbows and their superior range.


We agreed to have level 2 hills, obstacles level 1 and forests level 4. The lake was a blocking terrain for the purpose of movement but didn't affect line of sight at all.

We rolled off for sides, I won and picked South. It was then my turn to deploy the first unit. I chose South because it looked better for me in terms of initial defensive position and ability to advance on the right flank with the hill/forest blocking line of sight.

Deployment Order

1. Bolt Thrower (BT1) - Sisterhood Panther lancers
2. Archers (A1) - Paladin Knights (PK1)
3. Spearelves (S1) - Paladin Foot Guard
4. Palace Guard (PG) - Paladin Knights (PK2)
5. Bolt Thrower (BT2) - Men-at-Arms
6. Storm Wind (SW2) - Paladin Foot Guard
7. Silver Breeze (SB1) - Crossbowmen
8. Archers (A2) - Elohi
9. Silver Breeze (SB2) - Priest
10. Mage - Ur-Elohi
11. Spearelves (S2) - High Paladin
12. Rest of the Army(SW2)
Final Deployment

During the deployment the most important for me was to learn where Crossbows are going to be. As Darth put them in the center but at the deployment line it meant I could have safe passage on the right and could avoid it on the left.

However, he kept Crossbows until the last possible moment (even with characters after and the gap left in the middle) so I had to deploy my units well until that moment. I decided to use the obstacle for extra protection for my own shooters and use them in the middle so they had the best choice of targets. I also positioned my infantry in the center where they enjoyed some protection of the hill but were able to go towards any direction.

Finally, I left my faster troops to be deployed on the flanks but I also waited with them till the last to decide how I want to group them. In the end I decided to go with cavalry on the left flank as I could avoid Elohi for a while. Initially, I thought I could use the hill and the fact I have Pathfinder on Stormwind regiment to approach the enemy in relative safety. However, I changed my mind because it was too crowded on the right flank and Elohi, Ur-Elohi and Spearmen phalanx were all problematic for my cavalry there.

I wanted to win the left flank and be able to approach from two directions. The fast cavalry and drakon riders on the right flank were to get rid of the panthers and possibly annoy the horde to slow it down and avoid situation where it engages into combat at all. Drakons would also avoid being shot at but had the chance to jump over enemy troops as they approach my lines and try to harass them from there.

Darth won the roll off and decided it would be better if I start first :)

Outcasts - Turn 1
Opening fire

Elves moved forward but only in order to get into range. The shooters all focused on enemy cavalry, inflicting some damage and even shaking Paladin Knights in the middle! No target was routed yet.

Basileans - Turn 1
Shy Basileans advance

Basileans were not that eager to get into a fight. The forces on the left flank even pulled back to avoid charges. Crossbowmen tried to return the favor but surprisingly their shooting was not as efficient as they hoped for. Fortunately, healing went according to the plan and the Knights looked unscathed again.

Outcasts - Turn 2
Shooting and outflanking continues

Outcasts continued their advance on the flanks and softening the enemy with shooting. It resulted in routing Panther Lancers and doing some damage to the Knights again but they remained unimpressed.

Basileans - Turn 2
Basileans are more decisive!

The squadron of Knights decided it is time to charge elven fast cavalry but didn't inflict substantial damage and didn't route their enemies (although got them wavered). Their companions got healed again and foot Paladins sprinted alone towards Elven Archers. Crossbowmen improved their accuracy but the Archers held their ground.

Outcasts - Turn 3
Elves speed up

Storm Wind cavalry charged the exposed flank of the Knights but surprisingly, didn't route their enemy either! The shooters focused on Paladin Foot Guard this time as they looked like more direct threat.

In the middle, Elven infantry maneuvered so that Palace Guard could intercept Paladins while Spearelves formed defensive formations against possible attack by Elohi.

Last but not least Drakes used the opportunity and landed in the safe spot behind the enemy lines.

Basileans - Turn 3

Basileans move forward. The Knights on the left flank got healed a little and tried to rout Elven fast cavalry but they lost their impetus charge bonus and could not do enough damage to succeed. Their companions decided to move in but their help might be coming a little too late.

Paladins and Elohi moved full speed through the center as it seems Basileans had enough of Elven war machines. Finally, Crossbows chose to unleash another volley and inflicted some damage upon Spearelves but Elven phalanx didn't shake easily.

Outcasts - Turn 4
Powerful Elven attacks

This time fast and heavy cavalry worked together and Paladin Knights were finally destroyed. Drakon Lord and Storm Wind regiment combined their might against second enemy squadron and that too was annihilated. Paladin Foot Guard had to face flank charge from Palace Guard and elite Elven infantry smashed their counterparts even without magical support (Edit: I tried to cast Bane Chant on my PG but failed.)

Drakon Riders also had a nice flank attack to execute and shut down Basileans shooters easily while Elven Archers, Bolt Throwers and Silver Breeze cavalry focused their fire on Ur-Elohi and inflicted quite a significant damage!

Basileans - Turn 4
Basileans fight back

Ur-Elohi flew heavily toward the archers and it barely managed to inflict some damage but somehow it was enough to rout already wounded troops. Elohi had absolutely no problem in shredding the Bolt Thrower to pieces and reformed to look for new targets.

Silver Breeze cavalry was reckless and now paid the ultimate price as full might of spear armed phalanx rolled at their backs. (Edit: That is really impressive to have 90 Attacks :))

Finally, crossbowmen tried to break through but they are not as good in close combat as their spear armed companions and Elven Spears held.

Outcasts - Turn 5
Rearranging the formations

Surrounded and wounded crossbows stood no chance against the co-ordinated attacks of Spears and Drakons, especially that one of the Spears regiments attacked and routed nearby Priest so that he could not inspire his units anymore.

The rest of the army re-arranged the formations and the shooters once again tried to hunt down Ur-Elohi but once again it was not to be.

Basileans - Turn 5
Final attacks

Elohi destroyed another troops of Archers while wounded Ur-Elohi flew back to safety. High Paladin tried to get rid of the bolt thrower too but the war machine miraculously survived!

The armies had to disengage at this stage and it looked like this time Elves were a little bit more successful.

Turn-by-turn animation summary

After-battle thoughts

Due to time constraints we had to finish our game after 5 turns (we beginners are still slow, in particular online) so we just checked if there would be turn 7 and it turned out the game would have lasted only 6.

We did try quickly some things to see what could happen though. For example, my heavy cavalry could charge High Paladin but only wavered him. Shooters could not force another force check on Ur-Elohi and then there were no targets to attack save Bolt Thrower for Basileans.

First of all, I would like to thank my friend Darth for great game! It was fantastic to play again after few months since our last battle and I hope it is just the beginning of our sport rivalry, this time in KoW.

Second, please, remember it was just 4th game for me and 1st for Darth so I am sure we made plenty of mistakes, in particular in the movement phase. I am still not quite happy how I played on the left flank as I think it took me 1 turn too long to win there. I also made that silly mistake with Silver Breeze cavalry where I didn't make sure they are out of sight and/or range of the horde of spearmen. Not only I lost the unit for nothing but made the enemy come closer to my other units.

At the same time I am very happy I spotted the opportunity to use Drakons to great effect where they shut down enemy shooters and were in a great position to finish them off too. I am glad that the plan of getting rid of smaller units with shooting worked but I am also sure Darth will come back with vengeance next time we meet. :)

Thanks for reading and we are looking forward to your comments and feedback!


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