First battle with the Woses

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First battle with the Woses

Postby The Mouth of Sauron » Sun Mar 02, 2008 6:48 pm

I took my Woses force out for the first time against one of our younger players and I let him choose the scenario. He chose To Kill a King and after I found out he was fielding Dain I could understand why he chose that scenario. Still I like a challenge, even a doomed one, so I prefer to play the tough scenarios in order to improve my playing skill. Anyone can play an easy scenario and win. This one was going to be a challenge to keep my opponent to a Minor Win or a Draw at best. Though a two hour time limit meant I had a good chance at a draw if I could keep the dwarves off my "King".

The Wildmen of Drudan
1 Ghan-buri-ghan
45 Woses
16 Outriders of Rohan on horse

Points = 600
Models 62
Might = 3

Opponent
Dain
Gimli
12 Dwarven archers
22 odd dwarves with two handed weapons or shields

Scenario=To Kill a King
The dwarves deployed into three groups with Dain on one flank with one third the warriors and Gimli on the other with another third and the dwarven warriors with dwarf bows in the rear. I deployed with my outriders on my right flank and my Woses deployed into two ranks along my entire deployment edge. Ghan-buri-ghan was deployed on my right flank near the Ourriders.

The Outriders moved quickly past the nearby woods towards the prominent hill on that flank. The Woses moved into three groups with Ghan-buri-ghan leading one third into the neaby woods while the other two thirds moved towards the other set of trees on the left flank. The dwarves moved towards the hill as well. The dwarves unleashed a volley of arrow fire and dropped two of the Woses and removed a Fate point from one of my Outriders. Not an auspicious start. The next couple of turns saw the Outriders get into a position on and around the hill, with Ghan-buri-ghan safely ensconced in the trees on the right, a second group of Woses in the center deployed to harras the dwarves as they passed the rocks in the center and the last third moving through the trees to engage the dwarven archers. The dwarves continued their advance towards the hill with Gimli shifting his path towards the center force of Woses. The archers put aside their bows and marched towards the nearby Woses infested woodline. The Outriders opened up on Dain's position with the intent of doing as much damage to that tough old dwarf as they could at range. They managed to kill two blocking models and strip a Fate point from Dain. Not bad for needing 6s to wound followed by 4s or a 6 in the case of Dain. The dwarves in the meantime have nothing to do but take the bowfile and slowly close on the waiting Woses.

The Woses in the center are now in range of Gimli's dwarves and they manage to drop one of them with darts, Ghan-buri-ghan's Woses open up on the dwarves led by Dain and they manage to drop a dwarf as do the outriders. Despite a hail of arrows and poison darts only Ghan-buri-ghan manages to wound Dain and that still required a might point. Dain is not fated to die in this battle and so ignores that wound as well. Dain's dwarves move towards Ghan-buri-ghan's position, Gimli's dwarves move to engage the dwarves in the center and the dwarven archers move to engage the woses hiding in the nearby woods. The woses on the left charge the dwarven archers and swarm a few of them with nearly three times their numbers, the Woses in the center try to swarm a couple of Gimli's dwarves and to support the attack on the archers. Ghan's Woses pull the front rank out of danger of a charge next turn (the second rank was 6" from the dwarven line, while the Outriders move to outflank Dain's line and to reinforce Ghan's position as a flank threat. Arrows and darts again pelt the dwarves and another dwarven bodyguard falls dead. The Dwarven archers take a couple of losses, but the Woses take more. Gimli's dwarves mange to beat back the Woses attack with only one loss. Shooting isn't likely to kill the dwarves, much less Dain, and close combat is a dangerous place for Fight 3, Defense 3 warriors. The Woses retain priority and surround the dwarven archers. My lines are only one model deep in this attack since I have to also block Gimli's dwarves from rescuing the archers. Dain's lines are outflanked by the Outriders with all but a few of them moving behind the venerable old dwarf. Gimli throws his dwarves into the woses to cut a hole to exploit while Dain moves to try and engage Ghan-buri-ghan next turn. Arrows and darts fly again, but nobody dies. This is not good. The Woses engaged with the archers get clobbered by the dwarves and lose most of their fights. Casaulties are high, but the dwarves have still taken a couple as well. Gimli cuts through his opponent, but the rest of his line merely pushes my line back. The dwarves get priority and Dain wins the die roll for simultaenous Heroic Move declarations. Dain charges with his warriors into Ghan's lines, but can't catch Ghan in single combat as the spacing between models is too tight. No problem since Dain can declare a heroic combat and catch me, right? Well no, Ghan retires using his Heroic Move with his second rank (he was in the second rank as well) back through the woods and disappears from view. The Outriders charge into Dain's Flank while the rest of the line moves into firing positions behind the dwarves. The Woses on the left do their best to fight in two ranks to improve their chances of winning fights and therefore avoid wounding strikes. Gimli loses a fate point to arrows and another dwarf falls to arrow fire directed at Dain. Combats go primarily to the Woses and their Outrider allies. Dain's flank gets pummeled badly with four dwarves going down to the horsemen and woses. In the center Gimli's dwarves are pushed back and the dwarven archers are reduced to eight models so now they can't threaten me with Volley Fire. The Woses get priority and withdraw from the dwarven attacks, Ghan-buri-ghan moves towards the center and hide behind the large collection of rocks. The Outriders advance up behind Dain's dwarves and I now have him completely surrounded. The Woses on the left fall back to the nearby woods to get some breathing room from the dwarves and regroup for a renewed assault. Dain pursues Ghan as fast as he can while still skirting the woods on my right while Gimli reinforced by the archers moves to intercept Ghan from the other direction. The next three turns sees a two more dwarves fall to arrows directed at Dain and few more die to Outrider charges from behind, this is just enough to break the dwarves. Gimli manages to trap and engage Ghan in combat while Dain cuts off his escape and any reinforcements from the other side. After two turns of heavy fighting around Ghan's position the venerable Woses chieftain is slain in single combat with Gimli. Game ends in a minor win for the dwarves.

My biggest mistakes came late in the game. I should not have tried to retreat towards Gimli which immediately placed Ghan-buri-ghan in a position where he could be trapped between the two forces and the Outriders wouldn't be in a position to reinforce him. I also failed to block Gimli's force when I had the chance. I choose to fall back to regroup and to reengage him on my terms, but my opponent wisely moved away from the woods and towards Ghan-buri-ghan's new position and lastly i didn't engage in close combat with the Outriders while I had the chance to catch Dain's dwarves from behind which would have pulled them from the pursuit of Ghan. I was getting pummeled by the superior fighting skill of the dwarves whenever I engaged them with the Woses and this caused me to be too cautious. I have a lot to learn about how to fight using the Woses. They are a nice looking force and on paper they are good defenders, but once they get engaged they are in for a world of hurt if they lose a lot of their fights.

Casaulties were surprisingly light when I looked at them at the end of the battle. The dwarves had taken 24 lost of their 46 models so they took a beating and were broken late in the game. The Woses had taken 24 casaulties as well, one of which was Ghan, but they were still unbroken. Most of my casaulties came from close combat (21) and of the dead only one was an Outrider. The most dangerous position on the field was near Dain. One third of the dwarven casaulties (eight) came from dwarves covering Dain from arrow fire and I still manged to get enough hits to roll two wounding strikes into Dain, which he avoided with Fate.

The Woses have an average Fight value so I may consider looking at putting in a banner (rohan) and I definately need to consider putting in a better fighting character for Contest of Champions and To Kill a King. In general a Woses force looks to be a reasonably good force against the majority of the evil forces with their lower fight and defense values, but when you factor in having to face the Good forces it comes up short against the majority of them.

Any tactical suggestions on how to defeat my opponents (Good and Evil) in the various LOME scenarios with the Woses are welcome. Changing out the Woses is not an option, but changing their allied contingent is open for consideration. Not that I consider army composition fiddling to be a tactic.
The Mouth of Sauron
 

Postby BrentS » Mon Mar 03, 2008 10:21 pm

Tim, I finally had a chance to read this battle report. My meetings down here haven't given me much free time. I (obviously) found this very interesting.

One thing to consider (which I have) would be to have King Elessar lead this army. He could represent King Elessar coming to the Druadan Forest to grant the Woses permenant "ownership". I've considered adding him in place of Radagast, but those very expensive extra points would cut down on a TON of woses warriors. However, he'd certainly be a Champion or King worthy to fight with in those LOME scenarios.

If my math is right (w/o LOME with me) it could be:

King Elessar
Ghan Buri Ghan
Woses Warrior x 42

So, in your army its only a sacrifice of 3 Woses for your horde but also 16 archers! In my version its about 15 Woses to replace a Wizard with the King of Gondor.

I'm going to think about the tactics on your specific report a bit more. However, I think you are right Dwarves and Gondor are NOT good match-ups for our Woses when it comes to hand-to-hand combat. We need Mordor and Moria :)
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Postby knitemare » Tue Mar 04, 2008 9:14 am

BrentS wrote:
I'm going to think about the tactics on your specific report a bit more. However, I think you are right Dwarves and Gondor are NOT good match-ups for our Woses when it comes to hand-to-hand combat. We need Mordor and Moria :)


While I understand that in Tournaments a person will face both Good and Evil with their army, regardless of what their own force is, I really don't like playing Good vs. Good and Evil vs. Evil in standard games. Much like playing against someone who has an unpainted army, it makes the game less fun for me. There is something cool about the history of the world being included in each battle when you pit Good vs. Evil. Moreso when there is a cool objective/scenario.

If I have Aragorn, Legolas, Arathorn, or Eomer on the battlefield I would prefer to have them cutting through Orcs, Goblins, Trolls and the like in order to win the day. Having them cut down Dwarves, Elves, or Minas Tirith warriors just doesn't feel right. Conversely, I enjoy pounding on Good warriors with a Cave Troll or hordes of Goblins instead of fighting against Orcs or Easterlings.

I know there are scenarios in the Shadows of the East book that allow Evil to face Evil, but those are "historic" scenarios and it's not the same.
It's only about painting now.
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Postby The Mouth of Sauron » Tue Mar 04, 2008 11:58 am

Evil on Evil I don't mind too much. The forces of darkness were a fractios lot and it was only the will of Sauron and a shared hatred of the Men of the West (and elves) that kept them focused during the War of the Ring.

I would prefer that the US GTs were more organized into Good vs. Evil matches, but I think we still have a ways to go before we get there.
The Mouth of Sauron
 

Postby BrentS » Wed Mar 05, 2008 9:54 am

I agree, I'd much rather play Good v Evil games for fun. However, I can see why MoS's games often go G v G or E v E. He's preparing for tournaments and not just necessarily playing for fun.


BTW, any thoughts on my King Elessar suggestion Tim?
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Postby The Mouth of Sauron » Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:50 am

No, I play for fun, however my opponents don't all have Good or Evil forces and since I play with I have on hand I'm limited in my options. I play good vs. Evil in many of the "campaign" storylines that Steve Shook and I play. Of coourse we did several Evil on Evil as well, but my Haradrim and his Easterling battles were still a good storyline.
I play LOTR for fun, but I do play at tournament point levels in most cases since I only get to play once a week. when it stops being fun I will find womething else to do with my free time. I used to play 40K and WHFB until they stoppped being fun to play.
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Postby knitemare » Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:59 am

The Mouth of Sauron wrote:No, I play for fun, however my opponents don't all have Good or Evil forces and since I play with I have on hand I'm limited in my options. I play good vs. Evil in many of the "campaign" storylines that Steve Shook and I play. Of coourse we did several Evil on Evil as well, but my Haradrim and his Easterling battles were still a good storyline.
I play LOTR for fun, but I do play at tournament point levels in most cases since I only get to play once a week. when it stops being fun I will find womething else to do with my free time. I used to play 40K and WHFB until they stoppped being fun to play.


You'll have to move on to Legends of the Old West or Legends of the High Seas!
It's only about painting now.
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Postby The Mouth of Sauron » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:05 pm

I cannot get a copy of Legends of the old West. I have Blood on the Plains so I can use some of my old 25mm Civil War figures as early US Cavalry. I'm seriously considering Legonds of the high Seas, but the prioblem boils down to a lack of opponents. I've only just gotten my LOTR opponent pool large enough to guarantee me an opponent on any given weekend. That was not as easy as it sounds.
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