First Game of the Year, Stalliarch Lords, and AOS Thoughts

Howdy Y’all, TheJTJ here. Its been a while since I have had the opportunity to do any sort of battle report or just talk about the hobby in general. So lets get to it.

The Current Local Scene

Before I get into my most resent game I just wanted to take a few minutes to talk about the local AOS/Minature gaming scene around Houston.

I am not here to say what is right or wrong, cast shade or have a political discussion. Just stating what I have been seeing.

In general all the nerds and neckbeards have been crawling out of woodwork and starting to game again over the last few months. Many of the tournament regulars around Houston never stopped. I personally know several people that are still not comfortable with being in a store environment. So we have bother ends of the spectrum, like in most things. I will say that I have seen an uptick in the amount of gamers playing since January, so it looks like people are starting to get more comfortable.

Most of the stores in Houston have opened up tables to one extent or another. They range from full pre COVID occupancy levels on one end, to a limited amount of reserve tables on the other. Speaking with a few owners sales were mostly good during the winter months and profits where up.  On the down side it seems that there is many, many logistical concerns with GW stock. Retailers have had major issues getting orders on time, or at all. There has been limited allocation of new release and the like. This has been one of the biggest issues Games Workshop retailers have been facing for the last few months and it appears to be country wide problem.

One of the more interesting things I have also noticed is the growth of other game systems. Games like Marvel Crisis Protocol, Star Wars Legion, and LOTR to name a few. A few of the reason in the popularity of these games could be contributed to lower cost of entry, 40k fatigue, and moving away from locally dead games, “X-wing, WarmaHoards”. It is nice to see so much variation in the local stores. On any given day there could be every table featuring a different game system.

A few of the store have been running 3 round tournaments for months. I will say that I have not made it a point to attend any of these, toss it up to laziness and lack of motivation. However I do plan on attending the next one that I am able to. Harambe’s Heroes just completed a 2 day GT last weekend on the north side. It had over 20 players turn out! So big props to them and so glad The Heroes are continuing to grow the community here in Houston.

From what I hear the Texas Masters will be kicking off at some point this year. I think one of the biggest hurdles that The Masters will face this season is the uncertainty of GTs. Will each city have one? Will they count for less points if all cities do not? Are TOs afraid to invest time and money in something that could unravel at the last minute? I just hope that it all works out. I am committed to making a run at the top 20 again this year. And plan to attend all the Texas Masters sanctioned GTs this year.

I think as we inch closer to summer we will start seeing more and more people getting back out and playing some games. I know I am ready to get back out and see all the friends that I have made through the local gaming scene.

Take and Hold Vs Nurgle

I had very fun game at Montags Games against Ben M. and his Chaos Nurgle Hoard.

I was very excited to get out and roll some dice. The itch has been steadily growing over the last few weeks, especially since completing my Stalliarch Cav army.

I came into this game not knowing what my opponent was bringing. But I had shared my list with him so he had an idea of what it could do. I was not looking to win or lose just have a fun time rolling some dice. I honestly did not care if I got stomped into the ground by the rotting feet of the Plague King.

The Lists

The JTJ

Stalliarch Lords Fast Cav

  •  Allegiance
    • Stallarch Lords
  • Arch-Kavalos Zandtos
  • Liege-Kavalos
    • General, Nadir-bound Mount, Twisted Challenge
  • Liege-Kavalos
  • Kavalos Deathriders x10
    • Blade and Shield
  • Kavalos Deathriders x10
    • Blade and Shield
  • Kavalos Deathriders x10
    • Blade and Shield
  • Mortek Guard x10
    • Blade and Shield
  • Mortek Guard x10
    • Blade and Shield

Fast and to the point! Read more about this list here: Link

 

Ben M

Tallyband of Nurgle

  •  Allegiance
    • Munificent Wanderers “Wrath of the Everchosen”
  • Battalion
    • Tallyband of Nurgle
      • Great Unclean One
        • General
        • Artifact: Endless Gift
        • Spell: Glorious Afflictions
        • Command Trait: One Last Gift
      • Poxbringer
        • Artifact: Mucktalon
        • Spell: Favored Poxes
      • Plaguebearers X30
      • Plaguebearers X20
      • Plaguebearers X10
      • Plague Drones X3
  • Chaos Sorceror Lord
    • Nurgle
  • Chaos Marauders
    • Nurgle
    • Sword and shield
  • Soulgrinder

Points 1996

Mission

Take and hold, Main Rulebook.

Only two Objectives, one in each zone. In some ways the mission favors him, he can just sit on the point and I will have to kill his whole army to take it. In other ways it favors me. I can have my whole army across the field in 2 turns to try and take it, while it will take him several turns to just make it to my point.

All in all the primary traits of my list, speed and maneuverability. Is not as useful in this mission as one with many objectives. “or is it?”

aos board set up
The Table

Deployment

I set up my forces in  spread evenly across the board. With the guard units in the middle to help hold my Objective.

Ben placed his units also spread out with along the deployment line. His left seemed to be a little more damage dealing with the Soulgrinder, however his R side had the big unit of Plaguebearers (PB)

OBR vs Nurgle
Lined up and ready to go

 

Turn 1

Ben deployed first, but gave me first turn. I used the Nexus to give his Great Unclean One a -1 cast. I did nothing else in Hero phase.

In movement, I moved/ran my L and Center unit of Deathriders (DR) up the board pressuring the L side, with the intent to charge the all his screening units on that side. On the right I move to the center of the board and planned to hold back and let him come to me.

Right side
Left side movement

No shooting for me.

In the charge phase I made a good charge roll with my far L unit, and the Center also made a good charge. I did a little bit of damage with my impact hits killing a few models.

Left Side charge

In combat I activated my L unit first and killed The unit of 10 Plaguebearers on the L and most of the Chaos Marauders. Ben then activated his center unit of PB and did a few wounds to my DR. My Deathriders activated and swung at the PB, I rolled many many 6s to hit. Each of those 6s was a mortal wound back to me from is Great Unclean Ones One Last Gift Trait. After death saves he ended up doing 13 mortal wounds back to me! I will probably say One Last Gift did more wounds to me than any other unit in a single turn.

Fight in the center

During battle shock he did not have any CPs to auto pass any rolls and lost a few more models from the center unit.

End of my turn 1

On Bens turn one he cast a few spells and his Nurgle ability The Burgeoning from his Cycle of Corruption damaged almost all my units on the board. with

He then moved his 30 block of PB up with intent to try a charge on my R unit of DR. He also moved his Soulgrinder into charge position. The Plaguedrones were a bit stuck in the middle after movement, but with a good charge roll could threaten my center or R unit of DR.

They shamble forward

In shooting he unleashed his Soulgrinder into my L unit doing a bit of damage.

During his charge phase Ben made charges with the Soulgrinder and the 30 block of PB. However the Drones failed their charge.

After combat

In battleshock he lost a few more Marauders, however he rolled a 1 for the 30 PB and brought a few back.

Center is getting thinned out
Lefts side is looking bad for me

Turn 2

I won the roll and took the turn. The Nexus put a -1 to hit on the Drones.

In movement I pulled all my units out of combat and repositioned them on the board. I was hopping to move my damaged units into more favorable matchups. I wanted to try and clear as many units of his off the board, I was hoping to only have the GUO and Soulgrinder alive at the end of this turn.

How the right side is looking after my movement.
Left side after move

No shooting for me. During the charge phase I barely made it with my the large unit of DR on my R. the rolled a 3, but thinks to the +1 from the banner they made it in. Zandtos and my general failed their charges. So they will have to sit and wait to be chomped on by the GUO and Soulgrinder.

In the combat phase, I killed one Drone with my Kavalos, did only 3 total wounds counting impact mortals to his Poxbringer. I killed his Chaos Sorcerer and put enough wounds on the remaining 30 block of Plagueberers that they would die from battleshock. It was an ok turn, but now were what I was hoping to do.

Drones vs Bones

Bens turn 2 was mostly about him trying to take out my 3 Kavalos. In the Hero phase he was able to cast a few spells from the GUO.

Movement, he shuffled his Soulgrinder and GUO to just outside 3 inches of my General and Zandtos. I figures that they would both be taken down this turn.

In shooting the Soulgrinder put few wounds on my general, but nothing major.

He made both charges from the Soulgrinder and GUO. However after all his swings they did very little damage to either of the units. My swings back did very little as well. The drones managed to kill off the Kavalos they were in combat with. And I finally took out his Poxbringer. I did very little damage to the Chaos Marauders, but they did succumb to battleshock.

Want some candy?
Gone but not forgotten

The roll of for the next round would be the deciding factor in the outcome of the game. I was in position to sneak in and take the his point and not even have to engage him in combat. However if he won the roll, he could pull back and sit on the point or go full at me and probably kill most of my remaining models.

Turn 3

As luck wound have it I won the roll. I explained to Ben what I would/could do to win. However if he still wanted to roll dice I would just try and kill the rest of his units for us to have fun. However Ben asked me to just move all my units like I would to win to check and see if I had the range. I did and we called it there. It was a fast and bloody game.

After Action Report

Here is what Ben had to say about the match.

I hadn’t played much of AOS 2nd edition, but I was familiar enough with my Nurgle Daemons from 1st edition to know that they could absorb a lot of damage, but aren’t great at dishing it out (aside from a few combos). My strategy was to use the daemons to absorb attacks and then use more killy units from the S2D boom to push back, in the form of a Soulgrinder and a unit of Marauders buffed by a Chaos Sorcerer Lord. Unfortunately, my marauders took a first turn charge from the OBR cavalry (those things are fast!) and were ever only fighting at half-strength. The Soulgrinder did some work, his strong attacks have such few dice that he is very swingy. I did a good job of keeping my daemons in range of their heroes to take advantage of command traits and buffs. The command trait from the Munificent Wanderers is brutal for opponents: every melee hit roll of an unmodified 6 targeting a daemon unit wholly within 12″ of the general causes a mortal wound on the attacking unit! Suffice it to say, the command trait (One Last Gift) did more damage to the OBR cavalry than the daemons themselves. As tough as Nurgle units are, By the end of Turn 2, most of my infantry had been cleared and I unwisely moved my GUO off the objective to engage an OBR hero. He wanted revenge! Of course, that allowed the speed of the remaining OBR cavalry to once again shine, as they snaked around my units to claim the critical objective on Turn 3 and win the game. Despite the loss, I was happy with my units and overall strategy and it’s clear what I would do differently next time; keep my marauders out of range from a first-turn cavalry charge and keep my Big Boy parked on the objective!

It was a fun match and I look forward to getting a game against Ben sometime in the near future. I think if he would have just sat on the his objective he could have possibly pulled off a win. But I still had a few units with enough damage potential to kill his GUO….so who knows. I think the game was still close and a few rolls along the way would have changed the trajectory of the battle for sure.

So what could I have done better? What should have been Bens tactics?

Stalliarch Lords and OBR thoughts

I love the speed that the Stalliarch Lords provide. I would honestly consider them in any OBR build, they just help one of the biggest weaknesses of the army. So far I have very much enjoyed playing OBR. I think in certain matchups they are way over powered, but in others they can be beaten handedly.

If you are a new player that is looking for an army to start with OBR is very very forgiving. I find that Death is in general because of the ability to bring back models and units. However because of the resilient and killiness of OBR it is a great choice for someone learning the game. Also painting the army can very very easy using contrast or just basing coats and shades.

For those who are veteran players you know what OBR is and how it works. I find that it plays closer to a sledge hammer than a scalpel.

Next for my OBR is Arkhan and the endless spells. Arkhan is currently on my painting table and I am about 20% complete. I think I will play around addling him to my next games to get a little magic on the board.

Soulblight Gravelords

If you have not heard the news Vampire Counts are back baby! Thats right my first Warhammer Fantasy Battles army, my second miniature army and one of the reasons I started playing tabletop games. Check out all the info from GW here: Link

I have soooo many old Vampire counts models. Loads of Fell bats, bat swarms, kit bashed Blood Knights, 120 or more skeleton warriors, and many many old metal/finecast heroes. I think all the new models look great. But am I willing to buy all the new stuff to to replace all the older models I have? I think I am going to have to see what the warscrolls look like and how the army will play. If it looks tournament worthy I may be picking up a few of the new boxes to paint of for a tournament.

The one unit I do not have that many of is zombies. I think I only have about 20 or so of the old sculpts, I would not mind getting a few boxes of the new ones to mix in if they look like they would have a place in a list.

What some of my hopes and dreams for the  Soublight book is:

  1. Mannfred is good– has great “raise dead abilities” Has some trait or skill that lets him runaway from combat when it suites him, like in the books.
  2. If this replaces Legion of Nagash– I hope that Nagash/Arkhan can be taken in the army and that we see some crossover with Nighthaunts and Flesh Eaters. It would just be very nice if you see a unit or 2 from all the Death battletomes.—probably a bit much to ask.
  3. There is a raise dead / mechanics like  Grave sites in LON battletome.
  4. Vampires can shred units in CC and have a healing mechanic.
  5. I imagen that there will be some book wide mechanic that works off Hunger or some other blood driven idea. like the more units you kill the stronger the vampire get.
  6. There will be at least one shooting unit….please skeleton bowmen!!
  7. Terrain? Endless spell?

All in all I am very excited for the new army. I was not planning AT ALL to start a new army project this year, but this is probably the one army they could have released that will have me at the store the day the book arrives to pick up my pre-order copy.  My poor poor Stormcast, they were next in line to get some paint…..now they will be pushed down the line once again.

AOS Quick Thoughts

  • Well Lumineth got a new book already. I have not even taken the shrink off of my copy of the original army box.. Looking like a bad purchase now….
  • So the rumors have started to circulate about 3rd edition. Hope: keep it streamlined, reset the powercreep, not cost $10000 to get the new books and warscrolls, keep the double turn but make it an actual hard choice not auto go.
  • I love shooting! Is shooting getting out of hand?
  • Nagash is over costed. Change my mind.
  • Underworlds have been putting out some nice models the last few years. Always excited to see what they will do next.

Thanks for reading, Y’all be good.

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