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Sunday, June 24, 2018

Last battle of 1.0

  I rushed home from my day off work (yes, I'm one of those people who willingly goes into work on their day off) to play a game with the wife after she got off.  I spent my weeknights after work building the rest of the Stormcast and getting ready to play against her unbeatable undead army and we planned on getting this one in before the new edition of Age of Sigmar hit.  And it was a fun game!

  We played the mission "Knife to the Heart" from the GHB 2017, which meant we played diagonal deployment with one objective marker in each deployment zone.  We each took a 2,000 point army and set up the battlefield using some of her new terrain from the mausoleum set.

The battlefield.  She was very happy to place down her newly-built terrain because... undead.  
  Her force consisted of a Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon, a Vampire, a Mourngul (Forgeworld, thanks Redmon!), 2 Harbingers, 20 Skeletons, 2 units of 10 Skeletons, 2 units of 10 Grave Guard (which never even saw the battlefield), and 10 Hexwraiths.  Ouch!

Her army, including gravestone markers...
   Meanwhile, I took Vandus Hammerhand, a Celestant-Prime, a Knight-Venator, a Lord-Relictor, 2 units of Liberators, 2 units of Judicators, 2 units of Retributors, and a unit of Prosecutors.  My plan was to keep the Celestant-Prime in reserves to charge his hammer and bring him in later when he was needed most. 

My army, in all its gold and grey glory!
   Deployment was simple.  We each set up in our corners, with a unit of Judicators guarding my objective and a unit of 10 skeletons guarding hers.  Otherwise, we put our powerful stuff in the middle to face off against each other.  Since she finished deploying first, she got to choose who took first turn and she (wisely) turned that over to me.  Time to get our battle on!

Deployment
  My first turn started with Vandus Hammerhand moving up to take the heroic point atop the hill and the rest of the army fanning out to tray to pincer her force.  Some shooting and lightning breath saw me take down six skellies and wound the Vampire, only for her to raise five of the skeletons back in her turn.  Rather uneventful and unimpressive.  In the meantime, she rushed up and set to charge Vandus atop the hill, but failed.  Woohoo!  But her Harbingers were able to charge my Knight-Venator and kill him quickly.  What she didn't know was that it was a trap to lure them in for my Paladins to take them out...

End Turn 1
  I won the roll-off to take the second turn (thank Sigmar!), so charged a unit of Liberators and the Prosecutors into her Hexwraiths and Vandus plus some Liberators into the Mourngul.  In my turn, the forces of undeath waxed so many models that I even failed a ton of Battleshock tests and lost  the Prosecutors, most of the Liberators from two units and a whole unit against the Harbingers.  Ouch!  Her turn saw her charge the Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon into the stronger unit of Retributors, and bring the Skeletons and Vampire against Vandus and his Liberator support.  It took much more than I wanted, but the Harbingers were finally killed while the Mourngul healed up all his wounds and commenced to finishing off the rest of my basic warriors.  I was not liking this at all.

End Turn 2
  She won the die roll to get the first turn and I knew this was going to be bad.  Her Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon finished off the Retributors he was facing while the Vampire, Mourngul, and even some skeleton spearmen finished of Vandus.  And to add insult to injury, the Hexwraiths continued to destroy their way to holding the flank.  It was time to spring my trap- I brought in the Celestant-Prime behind the undead's guarding unit and tried to rush my surviving Retributors to support.  I also positioned the Judicators so that they would all be able to shoot at the Vampire Lord and give the powerful Starsoul-mace wielding Paladins the opportunity to banish the dragon-rider, which they did!  Now we were getting somewhere.  With the mighty swing of Ghal-Maraz, the Skeletons guarding her objective were instantly cleared and I was able to distract her from winning the game.  It may have taken some work, but now I wasn't feeling like the battle was going to be a loss. 

End Turn 3
  I won the roll-off for the fourth turn and I moved so that I could hopefully get everything into place.  Some more shooting and maneuvering was all I could do to try to pull this battle out.  My wife responded by completely abandoning any effort to take my objective so that she could defend hers and moved her Mourngul and Hexwraiths to come after my attack.  Luckily, everything was still out of charge range and all she could do was toss some Mystic Bolt magic at the Prime.  It hurt, but I was still alive. 

End Turn 4
   There was still hope and we had made it to the last turn of the game.  If everything went in my favor, I might be able to steal victory from the bone-jaws of defeat.  And it all started with the roll-off for first turn.  She won it.  Uh oh...  Her Mourngul and Hexwraiths charged the Celestant-Prime and fought a hard battle that saw the Mourngul get smashed to death by the mighty hammer of Sigmar.  But, of course, the Hexwraiths overwhelmed him and took him down.  While demoralizing, it was obvious that neither of us would win the game at this rate.  My turn saw me do little more than stand around looking golden and glorious. 

End Game
  I have to give my wife credit as she felt so bad for beating me that she stopped healing her units and chose not to bring in her extra Skeletons or any of the Grave Guard.  Even with all that, she still was able to destroy the vast majority of my army and keep me from stealing victory from her despite not having a plan other than winning.  It was sad.  But I thank my wife for being willing to almost lose just to make me feel better. 

  This now means that my wife's undead army didn't lose a single game in the first edition of Age of Sigmar.  I'm not sure what I can do as my son can't beat her with any of the Chaos armies we own and I can't beat her with the blessings of lightning-forged warriors of Sigmar himself.  And now she wants Nighthaunt?  Oh man...

  It's going to be very interesting to see how the second edition of the game treats each of our armies and what we might be able to do to even out the battles again.  But we really enjoy AoS and look forward to it next week.  Hopefully my 70-hour work-weeks won't keep me from enjoying this high fantasy!


  Let me know how your games of AoS have been treating you and what you think of the 2nd edition.  Otherwise, Happy Gaming!

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