Battle at the Bunker (LotR) - July 27th

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Battle at the Bunker (LotR) - July 27th

Postby Amdur » Tue Jul 28, 2009 10:56 am

I arrived at the Bunker expecting to play WotR, but when my perspective opponent did not show, Doug was on hand to throw-down some LotR.

This time around, he took Minis Tirith, and I got a bit evil and played a Fallen Kingdoms list. Our lists looked something like this:

Doug’s 350 pt Minis Tirith Force:
4 Mounted Knights of Minis Tirith
9 Warriors of Minis Tirith with sword/shield
9 Warriors of Minis Tirith with spear/shield
10 Bowmen of Minis Tirith
1 Avenger Boltthrower

My 350 pt Fallen Realms Force:
1 Easterling Captain
10 Easterlings with sword/shield
10 Easterlings with spear
6 Harad Bowmen
6 Uruk-hai Berserkers

The board was configured such that the middle of the table was covered by a large, flat-topped plateau, with a single 4”x4” tower on top (with support pillars holding it up – no walls – so it didn’t provide a heck of a lot of cover.

The first turn didn’t go so badly – Doug was able to use his Volley fire to kill a guy, while neither my archers nor his bolt-thrower had anything in range.

The REAL death began on turn 2, when stuff started to get within range. His archers/bolt-thrower started homing in on my guys with elf-like precision, while my bowmen forgot to string their bows for awhile!

Meanwhile, his cav was coming at me from my right, along with a smaller unit of swordsmen/spears. I sent a flanking force of my own to my left toward the ballista, and he reacted by sending the other half of his swords/spears to intercept. He didn’t really need to, as the bolt-thrower decimated my troops on that side of the board, along with some of his bowfire, in short order.

Back on the right, I lined-up my forces to try to create a wall at the top of the only access ramp up the hill on that side of the board. I must have mis-calculated the distances involved or something, as all of his foot troops (except one spear) were still able to reach the top of the ramp and find their way into battle, along with his cav. I had luckily won Priority the next turn, so my Berserkers were able to charge his Cav, but it was pointless: I either lost the combats, or failed to kill anything I hit.

By turn 5, I had reached my break-point, while he had lost a total of 3 figs, so I conceded at that point and shook hands.

I learned a few things from this battle:

Use scenarios. Without the use of a scenario, the game seems designed to allow archer-heavy forces to dictate the terms of battle. As Doug smartly did, he lined up deep in his deployment zone and spent every turn pouring fire into my ranks. Most scenarios will add in objectives that force the ‘firing line’ to rethink the idea of sitting 1/3 of their force on the back edge of the board and shooting the entire game. My only real option to negate his shooting advantage would have been to sit on my side of the board safe behind the hill, and not move – but what’s the fun in that? Without real objectives, there is no real reason or incentive to move, though, and risk ranged-death to the enemy, especially one with ranged superiority.

Terrain. As most skirmish games in the past have taught me, terrain is very important. Other than the edge of the hill (which didn’t figure into cover protection but on a single turn), there was literally no real terrain to use as cover – which of course presents a turkey-shoot for an archer-heavy force. Chad was on hand and witnessed my own shooting (which was responsible for 2 of my 3 kills), and commented that the weakness of missile fire is why he rarely takes missile troops. But Doug seemed to roll fairly average during the game, and archery accounted for 75% of his kills. Perhaps that is more than ‘usual’ for shooting troops, but I would tend to believe that the lack of cover contributed to that.

My first real taste of Cav – and boy was it nasty! Charge bonus, plus knock-down and the extra dice that follow – very nasty! I really like it! In WotR, Cav doesn’t seem quite as dangerous as it should be – but in LotR, cav definitely offers an edge to its owner, besides the usual movement distance benefit.

I have to confess that I am still quite a bit confused about charging in LotR, though. I repeatedly re-read the rules (like I posted in the rules forum here), and charging/control zones seem to be pretty straight-forward to me. However, the players I’ve played/spoken with so far have a much different idea about how control zones/charging works, and as such, are much more restrictive in their use. I admit I am still a big noob, but the way folks play charging/control zones seems to me to be a bit different than what is written in the book. A lot of what I’ve seen so far seems to be carry-over thoughts from 40k, which has a bit different engagement mechanic than LotR has. This isn’t really a complaint, as much as it is just a bit of frustration on my part. I am fine playing it however other folks play it, as long as it’s consistent.

The only slight annoyance I encountered was when a Red shirt checked-up on us and started chatting LotR with us briefly, and made comments to the effect that you can come up with some really sick/cheesy combos in LotR, that LotR is more a “Sprit of the Game” type game whereas 40K and WHFB were more ‘balanced’. I wonder if he has actually played 40K or WHFB lately? I wanted to ask, but didn’t want to slow our game down getting into a debate. ;)

As in our previous game, Doug was a gracious opponent and worked with me easily in conducting our game. Small mistakes were forgiven, rules were discussed between us before pain was dealt, etc. He was a joy to play against!

I’ve got some ideas of troops that I want to try next, too, which means more purchases. Uh-oh. More wallet-pain incoming!

And despite my butt-whooping, I did really enjoy the game and am definitely looking forward to the next one!

-Tim
Wheels within wheels in a spiral array, a pattern so grand and complex.
Time after time we lose sight of the way, our causes can't see their effects.
Amdur
 
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Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2009 10:01 pm
Location: Oak Park/River Forest, IL

Postby Guardian of Ecthelion » Tue Jul 28, 2009 11:23 am

It sounds like you had a fun game. Just remember that when building a list for B3 that you use the 33% archer rule. Your archers have to be from the same army. Each army contingent has to have enough foot soldiers for the amount of archers being used.
Example---- 12 Warriors of Minas Tirith
6 Minas Tirith Archers
Can't have 12 Warriors of Minas Tirith
6 High Elf Archers
Also Doug's army didn't have a Hero listed.[/list]
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Postby BrentS » Tue Jul 28, 2009 11:24 am

I'm glad you guys are finding time to get some games in. Its interesting to see someone approach the SBG after "starting" with WotR. Some of the terminology is different and it makes me smile. I noticed in your last rrport your were talking about dwarven "kinsman". In the SBG world, we just have Dwarf Warriors and Dwarf Rangers (along with Khazad Guard and Iron Guard). I noticed it again today when you said you played a "Fallen Kingdoms" list. That term doesn't actual exist in the SBG world.

So that leads me to my first thing I wanted to point out. There's nothing wrong with the list you used for a friendly "pick-up" style game. However, once thing I'd really recommend is to look at Legions of Middle Earth (LOME) as it has some specific army building requirements. For tournament play (such as B3), we'll be following the LOME requirements for armies. So in the case of your list it would be "illegal". One of the tenets is that you have to have a Hero to lead each allied contigent of warriors. Again, nothing wrong with mixing it up for friendly games but just in case you didn't realize it, a list like yours wouldn't be allowed in a tournament. If you ever have questions about building lists, there are lots of people here that would comment on them if you look for advice.

Last thing, don't get too down on archery just yet. Your list only had 6 bows in a 33 model count army. Based on those statistics, its not expected that you'd do that much damage with them. Doug's was a bit more balanced with almost 1/3 archery and the Bolt thrower.

Anyway, keep playing and having fun. Thanks again for sharing.
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Postby Amdur » Tue Jul 28, 2009 12:07 pm

BrentS wrote:I'm glad you guys are finding time to get some games in. Its interesting to see someone approach the SBG after "starting" with WotR. Some of the terminology is different and it makes me smile. I noticed in your last rrport your were talking about dwarven "kinsman". In the SBG world, we just have Dwarf Warriors and Dwarf Rangers (along with Khazad Guard and Iron Guard). I noticed it again today when you said you played a "Fallen Kingdoms" list. That term doesn't actual exist in the SBG world.


Guilty as charged. ;) As long as someone who knows what they are doing (i.e. not me) knows what I am talking about (like you do), then we should be ok! :) And yes, day by day I start seeing more and more of the subtle differences between the two games. :) You should have seen Doug's face when I asked if ranged STR is reduced by 1 at over half range (a WotR rule), I thought he had taken a bite out of an extremely sour grape. ;)


BrentS wrote:So that leads me to my first thing I wanted to point out. There's nothing wrong with the list you used for a friendly "pick-up" style game. However, once thing I'd really recommend is to look at Legions of Middle Earth (LOME) as it has some specific army building requirements.


Oh yes, I DO have an excuse, tho. :)

Yesterday I came prepared to play WotR. Doug doesn't play WotR, so when my opponent didn't arrive, I quickly agreed to play LotR of course.

But of course, ALL of my LotR sourcebooks were at home (including my LoME), and I doubt the store would let me use theirs. Doug only had the rulebook as well, so I made a generic 'evil' list per the basic rulebook based on figs that I had with me.

I definitely wasn't trying out a "tourny" army or anything like that, and I understand there are different requirements once you start using the supplements, and participating in tournaments.



BrentS wrote:If you ever have questions about building lists, there are lots of people here that would comment on them if you look for advice.


I plan on posting my lists to be raked over the coals as we draw nearer to B3, for certain. :) At the very least, I hope that will help me avoid any legality issues.


BrentS wrote:Last thing, don't get too down on archery just yet. Your list only had 6 bows in a 33 model count army. Based on those statistics, its not expected that you'd do that much damage with them. Doug's was a bit more balanced with almost 1/3 archery and the Bolt thrower.


Are you of the school of thought that says if you're going to bring archers - bring the full 33%?


@Guard,

Thanks for the insight, as well! Like I asked Brent, do you also think that if you bring archers, you should always bring the max you can?

Thanks for the comments, guys! Much appreciated!! :)

-Tim
Wheels within wheels in a spiral array, a pattern so grand and complex.
Time after time we lose sight of the way, our causes can't see their effects.
Amdur
 
Posts: 178
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2009 10:01 pm
Location: Oak Park/River Forest, IL

Postby BrentS » Tue Jul 28, 2009 12:16 pm

No Worries!

Amdur wrote:
But of course, ALL of my LotR sourcebooks were at home (including my LoME), and I doubt the store would let me use theirs. Doug only had the rulebook as well, so I made a generic 'evil' list per the basic rulebook based on figs that I had with me.


I don't know if something has changed but GW always used to let us use the store copies of any of the sourcebooks when were were playing games.

Amdur wrote:
Are you of the school of thought that says if you're going to bring archers - bring the full 33%?


I am of that school of thought. I also don't like bringing an army if it doesn't have at least 10 archers so that I can volleyfire.
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