Monday 10 September 2018

Game 94 - Trident Realm - 2018/09/10


My training under the watchful eye of Jeff the Australian Master continues! I am really grateful for giving me constant opportunity to play against him. Fortunately, he does not mind me playing with the same army over and over again. He, on the other hand, has something slightly different every game, even if he is using the force from the same faction. 

In this game Jeff used Trident Realms one more time. We had quite close battles so far and I hoped I would be able to use the prior lessons to some effect now. The challenge was in the fact that small changes to the army list, combined with Jeff's skills, scenario and terrain always created a unique situation. No matter what I had to be ready to adapt to the circumstances quickly.

Here are the details of the army list Jeff had in this game (unfortunately, I cannot recall the items):

Trident Realms - Army List

6 Depth Horrors , Regiment, Crushing Strength (1), Fearless, Ensnare
- Depth Horror Eternal, Crushing Strength (2), Inspiring (Depth Horrors only), Nimble, Fearless, Ensnare

6 Depth Horrors , Regiment, Crushing Strength (1), Fearless, Ensnare
- Depth Horror Eternal, Crushing Strength (2), Inspiring (Depth Horrors only), Nimble, Fearless, Ensnare

6 Depth Horrors , Regiment, Crushing Strength (1), Fearless, Ensnare
Eckter - Warrior of the Waves, Crushing Strength (2), Ensnare, Individual, Inspiring, Krakenmaw (Windblast (8) and roll to damage as normal for each hit), Phalanx

6 Depth Horrors , Regiment, Crushing Strength (1), Fearless, Ensnare
 - Naiad Envoy, Individual, Inspiring, Pathfinder, Regeneration (4+)

20 Thuul, Regiment, Stealth, Ensnare, Speed 6
- Thuul Mythican, Hero, Individual, Crushing Strength (1), Stealth, Ensnare, Bane Chant (2), Inspiring (Thuul Only), Speed 6

20 Thuul, Regiment, Stealth, Ensnare, Speed 6
- Thuul Mythican, Hero, Individual, Crushing Strength(1), Stealth, Ensnare, Bane Chant (2), Inspiring (Thuul Only), Speed 6
20 Thuul, Regiment, Stealth, Ensnare, Speed 6
- Thuul Mythican, Hero, Individual, Crushing Strength(1), Stealth, Ensnare, Bane Chant (2), Inspiring (Thuul Only), Speed 6

20 Thuul, Regiment, Stealth, Ensnare, Speed 6

In comparison to the previous incarnation of the list, the first thing I noticed was the fact that there were no regiments of Depth Horrors, only Hordes. Apart from the obvious advantage of being more resilient and hitting harder, Jeff also pointed out their better maneuverability. Although not nimble, it is interesting to remember that Hordes of Large Cavalry and Infantry can still pivot in front of their enemies and move away.

It is not corkscrew charge but has a similar element to it. Regiments cannot do the same simply because the enemy 1" away from the front is also closer to the center of the unit and that prevents pivoting. It can be very useful because your unit is not as easily stopped and can potentially allow charges against different targets. Although I keep wondering why bigger unit is more mobile than a smaller one :)

Another interesting addition is Mr Eckter, the hero from Edge of the Abyss campaign. I really like the model myself! It was time to taste my own medicine as Eckter has the same ability as Windborne Cavalry I fielded a few times myself. However, he is also very flexible thanks to good melee characteristics, inspiring presence and already mentioned Windblast spell.

This army had definitely more built-in resilience and I was concerned I may have even tougher challenge in dealing with it. I definitely had to use my shooting to an effect and decided that this time I will do my best to be a bit more patient before I commit units to combat. I do need to inflict some damage prior to that to even out the chances.

I also reminded myself to be careful how I position my Drakons in particular, so that they are not easily charged by very maneuverable Thuul Mythicans. At least not to the front that would drastically limit the options for my flying cavalry. Now I needed to see what terrain do we get and what scenario we are going to play.

Here is my list for the reference:

Outcasts - Army List

3 Drakon Riders, Regiment
- 5 Silverbreeze, Troop

- 5 Silverbreeze, Troop
- Drakon Rider Lord, Hero, Large Cavalry, Staying Stone

3 Drakon Riders, Regiment
- 5 Stormwind, Troops 
- 5 Stormwind, Troops
 - Elven Prince, Hero, Mounted, Inspiring Talisman

3 War Chariots, Regiment
 - Elven Prince, Hero, Wings of Honeymaze - 100
20 Palace Guard, Regiment
- 10 Palace Guard, Troop
- 10 Palace Guard, Troop 
- Army Standard, Hero
20 Sea Guard, Regiment


Terrain details
For our game we used the map created based on the Epic Dwarf maps selection. We used Map 11 for this game.

Deployment and Scenario

Deployment of the armies with bounty attached to units (marked by yellow circle)

We played Eliminate and I had an impression I play this scenario quite often recently! It added to my resolution to play more carefully and be more patient this time. Simply because it was not only about losing dangerous units but also significantly contributing to the fulfillment of scenario objectives by my opponent. 

At the same time I like the challenge of trying to position units well and to time the attack correctly so that they are active in the game rather than just preserving points.

In order to help with the shooting, I positioned the units in the center so that I could have a better overview of the battle field. It also allowed me to have some impact on who may be claiming the central objective.

I kept both, Drakon Riders and Storm Wind cavalry on two flanks to threaten outflanking or to slow down the advance of the enemy. I was not sure how Jeff would deploy so that is also the reason I decided to go for something that looked to me more flexible. 

I was not, however, surprised that Jeff deployed in weighted flank formation. It made sense because he would need to minimize the effect of shooting and could deploy in 2 lines as well. 

My plan was to keep my own units with bounty alive (of course!) but keep moving them around in search for openings. Use the shooting to damage or even rout the units approaching the central objective. Use the units on the left to slow down the advance and those on the right to claim the middle of the battle field. If I could rout any Depth Horror units carrying the bounty in the process that would be great but I considered that more as a potential bonus. I knew Jeff would not let me attack them on my conditions that easily, if at all!

Trident Realms - Turn 1

Nereticans move at a double!

Without wasting any time, Nereticans moved at a double towards the thin line of Elven units. Double line formation left no space to land for annoying Drakon Riders and Depth Horror Eternals guarded the flanks of the army too. 

Outcasts - Turn 1

Cautious advance and outflanking maneuvers.

Elves advanced a little but were very careful not to get too close just yet. All the shooters focused their fire on a single target and inflicted some damage. However, Thuuls were not impressed.

Only Drakon Riders on the right moved a bit further but also being careful to not to get intercepted by the Depth Horror Eternal lurking nearby.

Trident Realms - Turn 2

Advance continues.

The army of Trident Realms kept moving forward with the units taking advantage of the forest as a protection. The first line of Thuul kept going towards main Elven forces, while second line of Depth Horrors pivoted slightly to the right. Just in case the Drakons decided to attack early.

Outcasts - Turn 2

First charges!

As it was often the case in the past, Elves charged early. However, this time it was due to the opportunity of timely flank charge by Storm Wind cavalry that picked damaged Thuul unit and routed it! Second unit charged another regiment frontally and both groups of Elven Knights were now holding main battle line of Nereticans.

At the same time the shooters chose another Thuul regiment as a target and once again did some damage. 

The rest of the infantry moved back a bit to avoid being charged while the Drakons used the confusion caused by heavy cavalry to move behind enemy lines.

Trident Realms - Turn 3

Counter attacks!

Nereticans counter attacked but unfortunately, the army could not move forward much. Although one unit of Elven Knights perished, the other held its ground. Depth Horrors had to change the facing to defend against the Drakons now.

Outcasts - Turn 3

Elves keep maneuvering.

Elven units kept maneuvering, as the time was not yet right for another wave of the attacks. Drakon Riders in particular moved away from their enemies in order to get to a better position later. 

The shooters, however, noted another success when they managed to rout second regiment of Thuul. Especially after Naiad Envoy failed to distract disciplined Elven Sea Guard who added to the damage done.

Trident Realms - Turn 4

Depth Horrors creep around the middle of the battle field.

Depth Horrors changed the route of advance and shifted their attention towards the center of the battle field. Naiad Envoy still failed to impress Elven SeaGuard but Thuul Mythican did distract the War Chariots. There should be a few less arrows coming this time.

Outcasts - Turn 4

Elves attack on the left.

Patient maneuvering finally paid off. There was a small opening on the left and that allowed Elves to mount a coordinated attack by Palace Guard and Drakon Riders against one of the Thuul units. The last one was attacked by Palace Guard troop to prevent it from counter attacking. 

In the meantime, Elven shooters succeeded again, this time by eliminating Depth Horror unit while second unit of Drakon Riders and Drakon Lord approached the enemy from different angles.

Trident Realms - Turn 5

Nereticans keep fighting back.

Despite the losses, Nereticans kept their eyes on the central objective and hit back wherever possible. Thuul unit routed Palace Guard but Depth Horror Eternals failed to get rid of their chosen opponents. It was in particular important in the case of Elven Prince that blocked the path towards Drakon Riders. Now Elven flying cavalry was ready to strike.

Outcasts - Turn 5

Elves reclaim the center!

It was time for the main strike and three Elven units combined their efforts to bring down the Depth Horrors in the middle of the battle field. It was successful and Elves reclaimed the middle objective.

Other units also attacked, with Palace Guard wavering Thuul and perhaps only the War Chariots were a bit too enthusiastic about routing the Mythican as their reckless advance brought them a bit too far forward and exposed their flank to the enemy.

Trident Realms - Turn 6

Last attacks of the Nereticans.

Depleted army of the Trident Realms attacked one last time. Unfortunately, neither Thuul Mythican nor Eckter managed to rout the Drakon Riders. Only the War Chariots perished, paying ultimate price for their reckless advance.

Outcasts - Turn 6

This time Elves could not rout any enemies.

Elves tried to block the passage towards the middle objective and at the same time attacked one more time. Palace Guard hit damaged Thuul but somehow it was not enough to rout this regiment.

Sea Guard and Silver Breeze cavalry shot at the Depth Horrors to weaken them as Palace Guard and Drakon Riders attempted to rout intervening individuals to hit the unit in the flank. Unfortunately for Elves, only Naiad Envoy got captured while Mythican stood its ground despite heavy damage. It prevented the Drakons from continuing their charge and saved the Horrors.

Fortunately for Elves, that was the last fight of the day and Nereticans withdrew, this time defeated.


Turn-by-turn animation summary.


I would like to thank Jeff for another great game! I was very happy with the outcome, as it was a close game as usual. It is not often when one can win against the Master and I think it was definitely one of my best games I played recently.

It paid off to be patient, sometimes trading time for space so that I could have the units in the right position when I needed them. This is perhaps the most obvious with the Drakon Riders but I also resisted temptation to charge with Palace Guard on the left. It would only slow down Thuul and Horrors for a turn and I would have no reserves left. 

Another example was with Silver Breeze when I could add their rear attack in combination with Drakon Riders and Drakon Lord. I use them too often as expensive blocking unit. Here adding them to melee added a few crucial damage points that would have otherwise allow Depth Horrors to stay in a fight and counter attack.

It was also interesting to think what would have happened in turn 7. I believe I would have sustained more damage. As the Drakon Riders did not rout Mythican and did not follow up to the flank of damaged Horrors, said Horrors would now charge them instead. Army Standard could not block them (this is where advantage of Horde vs Regiment is visible) and even with hindered charge that may have been enough. 

Eckter would also have a good chance to get rid of the second unit of Drakons, especially with the help of nearby Depth Horror Eternal. That would have meant the loss of 2 units with bounty already. 

I also assumed that second remaining Depth Horror unit would easily rout Silver Breeze and claim the objective in the middle. That would have swung the balance into Jeff favor dramatically.

I would have most likely only a Drakon Lord to attack wounded Horrors or Sea Guard to shoot at them. If I shot at them and done enough damage to rout them then that would have been a draw. If I charged them and routed them, I would have won. However, both options have quite low chances of success. 

Another option, depending on the positioning of the Horrors in the center, would have been to move Sea Guard and Drakon Lord withing 3" of the objective to contest it. But it is hard to say at the moment if that would have been an option, in particular for Sea Guard to get close enough.

Hence, while I am very happy to win the game, I still need a better plan B in case of turn 7. I also noted a few things that I believe I should have done differently.

In my turn 4 I attacked Thuul Mythican with my Prince. However, I positioned nearby Drakon Riders a bit too close to my own hero. That allowed Depth Horror Eternal to charge him and if it succeeded, the Drakons would have been in grave danger of being flank charged. That was crucial because I needed them to contribute to incoming melee in the center.

In my turn 5 I advanced with Chariots unnecessarily. I was not sure if I can rout the Mythican but once I did it I should have only reformed the Chariots so that nearby Depth Horror would only be able to charge the front of either Silver Breeze or the Chariots. I also missed the opportunity to send my Army Standard to block Depth Horrors from attacking either unit. That would have slowed them down and prevent them from potentially joining the fight in the middle and perhaps free one of the units (be it chariots or Silver Breeze) to be able to shoot one more time.

Once again, many thanks to Jeff for a great game!

Thanks for reading!


  1. My inner justification for the apparent contradiction in horde vs. regiment agility is that a hordes greater strength allows it to exert a better zone of control allowing it to pivot in front of the enemy

    1. Hi Steven!

      Thanks for the comment. I wonder if that was intentional during the designing process or is it something that was a side effect.

      Your justification is definitely interesting but how about Horde of infantry or cavalry then? These units are less maneuverable as an effect of gaining more resilience and strength.


  2. Lol, idk man, I'm a dungeon master so I'm used to coming up with justifications that make just enough sense to get my players to stop asking questions.

    Maybe since LI and LC hordes generally represent looser formations of non traditional troops, maybe that helps them be more manuverable than a more tightly ranked horde of traditional soldiery?