Tim Hixon's UK GT Battle Report

You just finished the best game of your life and you have to let the world know just how cool it was! Post your report here with all the glorious details.

Postby Gartl » Sun Jan 24, 2010 3:45 am

And Guardian, I am with you. If I tried to plan our battles like Tim does my brain would explode. i play each game as it develops and it works well for me, whereas Tim's system works for him. That is what I love about LOTR, different strategies can be successful.
It is a strange fate that we should suffer so much fear and doubt over so small a thing. - Boromir FOTR
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Postby Smeagol » Sun Jan 24, 2010 7:21 pm

Friggin dice! GT is over and battle reports will commence once I've had some sleep. Both of my forces had almost the exact same results. My dwarves had one major win (Ill Met by Moonlight), one Minor Loss (To Kill a King), and two draws (Domination and Cornered). My Evil force had one Major Win (To Kill a King), One Major Loss (Cornered) and two draws (Ill Met by Moonlight and Domination).

So obviously I still have problems with Domination as I failed to get anything other than a draw in both scenarios.

To Kill a King wasn't hard, but my dice and poor judgement doomed me in that scenario. My dwarves were facing a Far Harad Mahud Raider force and just got steam rollered late in the game. I couldn't get Priority or win a SINGLE dice off for Heroic Moves. Mahud can do a LOT of damage when they get to charge. They can even charge into difficult terrain and inflict a lot of damage. My orcs faced off an abbreviated version of the Fellowship and my warg trackers basically chewed them to pieces. It's bad when Pippin has the highest number of kills. Eventually Aragorn started to function properly and tore up some models, but the damage was already done. Legolas and Aragorn were the last standing, but I finally got Legolas (his king) after he ran out of Might and stopped rolling 6s.

Ill Met by Moonlight was an easy scenario for both forces. I hit a Galadhrim force lead by Legolas, Haldir (new version) and Rumil. The trackers killed Rumil and Haldir before they contacted my lines and generally out shot the elves until I finally decided to charge. The wargs tore up the elves on their flank. Legolas however refuswed to roll lower than a 6 in any combat and he refused to run. This meant I couldn't win the scenario. My orcs were not broken. My dwarves tore into an Isengard force, which is the type of force they were designed to abuse, and managed to run down Saruman late into the game. Wiht time running out the last of his force was brought to bay. This scenario was surprisingly my easiest one to play. I hate this scenario, but I know how to fight it obviously and my forces were well suited to the task.

Cornered is a nasty scenario and the one where my dice betrayed me. My Good force trapped and then decimated my opponent's force, but I couldn't get a second wound on his Mordor Troll Chieftain (minor win) much less kill it for the major win. I killed everything else on the tablem but it wasn't part of the victory conditions. My orcs were doing great and I was nearly off the table when I screwed up a retreat from combat which blocked my ability to Heroic Move out of danger (I play that Heroes have to move first and so did my opponent) this resulted in my hero being 6" farther from the table edge than I wanted to be. When I finally got to 6" I lost Priority and got jumped by four Gondorian Knights. My tactics were sound, but my dice were horrible in both games at crucial points.

I finished in the bottom half of the playing field with 116 points out of a possible 280 points. So it is official. I am a LOUSY player and don't know how to play Lord of the Rings.

The UK GT also blew the socks off of ANY US tournament I have ever gone to. Even if I could afford it I don't think I'd go to another US tournament (Adepticon and GitD excepted) again. Not until they raise the bar on the fun side of the event instead of concentrating on the competition side of the event. I got to spend a weekend with people I never met and enjoyed the camraderie of the event immensely. Adepticon and GitD are the only two events that even come close to what I experienced at the UK GT.
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Postby Gartl » Sun Jan 24, 2010 10:47 pm

Well if competition bothers you so much I suppose we could just go see a movie on Friday nights ;-)
It is a strange fate that we should suffer so much fear and doubt over so small a thing. - Boromir FOTR
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Postby BrentS » Sun Jan 24, 2010 10:58 pm

Well it sounds like you enjoyed the experience which makes it a great trip. You can't account for bad dice rolls. Poor luck doesn't make you a lousy player! Your record may not always reflect but I know that people will always respect you as a top flight general.

I hope you enjoy the rest of your stay in England and have a safe flight home!
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Postby Gartl » Sun Jan 24, 2010 11:45 pm

Actually Brent, it is my fault Tim lost. I hadn't played all year so became a lackluster oppenent. So Tim didn't get the high quality testing of his army he needed to play better. I take all the blame :-(

You will see how far I have fallen next month :-)
It is a strange fate that we should suffer so much fear and doubt over so small a thing. - Boromir FOTR
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Postby BostonNazgul » Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:07 am

You will see how far I have fallen next month Smile



i cant wait!

glad to hear you had a good time tim!
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Postby Smeagol » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:58 am

Gartl wrote:Well if competition bothers you so much I suppose we could just go see a movie on Friday nights ;-)


Actually you are no longer a tough opponent. Really the guys I played out here were far better than Steve, you or I. We're just average players.
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Postby Gartl » Mon Jan 25, 2010 9:32 am

Sorry Tim, can't take your word on that after your posting that you lost due to dice rolls. And lets be honest, you lose to Steve some times ;-)
It is a strange fate that we should suffer so much fear and doubt over so small a thing. - Boromir FOTR
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Postby febber » Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:22 am

Smeagol wrote:
Gartl wrote:Well if competition bothers you so much I suppose we could just go see a movie on Friday nights ;-)


Actually you are no longer a tough opponent. Really the guys I played out here were far better than Steve, you or I. We're just average players.


Well that wasn't my experience over there at all, Tim. Although with such a large field, there are quite a few top tier players. The general view over there is that the top 20-30 players are largely interchangeable, and that was my experience as well. But I certainly was a better player than most of my opponents, including some people that had finished top ten the year before. Ironically, the guy that I "lost" to was one of the weaker players I encountered, he just cheated well.
All-time LOTR Grand/National Tournament Record: 92-18-45 (W-L-D), 63 major victories
21 awards in 35 events inc. 5x Best Overall; 2x 2nd Overall (w/o Best General); 9x Best General
2007 National Circuit Champion
2008 National Circuit Champion
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Postby Amdur » Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:57 am

I've done my share of traveling around the country to play in tournaments (for other games), and I've always had the belief that the game itself was just one part of a trip.

Sounds to me like you had a wonderful time and experience - win, lose, or draw - and I would bet that more than made the trip worth it.

Kudos on a well-fought tourney, Tim! And thanks for posting all the cool details, too!

-Tim S.
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.
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Postby Guardian of Ecthelion » Mon Jan 25, 2010 2:33 pm

2 wins 2 losses 4 draws--from what it sounds like a few of the draws could have been wins. It amazes me that you ended up in the bottom half. I hope the trip was enjoyable, like I have said many times, one of my best experiences was playing you in Vegas. You beat me badly and still took time to help me be a better player, working out the if and buts after the game were truly enjoyable.
Although my travel budget this year is nothing, I look forward to hopefully meeting up with again and playing games.
Looking forward to the detailed battle reports.
Chris
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Postby febber » Mon Jan 25, 2010 2:52 pm

Guardian of Ecthelion wrote:2 wins 2 losses 4 draws--from what it sounds like a few of the draws could have been wins. It amazes me that you ended up in the bottom half. Chris


That's a function of the scoring system. Over there, with the system used the last 3 years, a draw is essentially a loss. A major win, minor win and two minor losses along with 4 draws would put Tim around the top 40% in a US field, top half to be sure. But there, a major win counts at 35 points, a minor is 30, a draw is 10, a minor loss 5 and a major loss 1.

The explanation they gave is that too many games ended in draws, and apparently the view was that people were playing for draws. Another possible explanation, which I favor, is that playing 700 point games in 2 hours, which often are LESS than 2 hours due to set up time and late posting of the matchups, may have more to do with the draws. Regardless, their system encourages fastpaced bloodbaths, exactly the kind of game I dislike. Tactics are less important than army building. It's much more like fantasy than SBG as we play it - I called it "Fantasy Lite."

When I played, I had 4 wins, (2 of them major), one minor loss, and 3 draws, and had the prior year's scoring been used, I would have placed about #5 overall. Instead, I placed 31 out of 150+.
All-time LOTR Grand/National Tournament Record: 92-18-45 (W-L-D), 63 major victories
21 awards in 35 events inc. 5x Best Overall; 2x 2nd Overall (w/o Best General); 9x Best General
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Postby Smeagol » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:32 pm

IT didn't help that I pointed out a movement ommision to my second opponent and it was those three cavalry that jumped my hero and killed him when I lost Priority. Most of my opponents were good players. I had two gimmes and both of those resulted in Major Wins.

After a bit of thought on the subject while I was in Bugmans for the afternoon waiting for Adam Troke to finish work so we could get in a game. My first game came down to dice rolls. I had slaughtered his force and it was just his obnoxious troll rolling a 6 almost every turn and me not rolling 6s when I was rolling to wound against a trapped model with 16 dice (it happened twice) that stopped me from slaughtering that bugger.

Second game was two mistakes and a dice roll that did me in. The first was my stupidity and the second was my sportsmanship. Lesson learned. I will not be a gentleman in any more games. If you forget to move something I will not let you move it and I will not point it out before you finish your moves. :) I am a bit serious about this one though.

Third Game came down to Legolas not losing a single fight and not fleeing. Nothing I can do about that in two hours. I had him down to five elves and I hadn't taken more than a dozen casaulties myself. Totally out played him.

Fourth Game. Kid still learnign the game and a bad matchup for him. My dwarves had to chase his fleeing uruk-hai, but I cornered him and slaughtered his force.

Fifth Game my opponent was shooting for not winning any games, but not forfeiting any either. He had the fellowship I had an orc horde. My warg riders killed all of them. I still had warg riders left at the end of the fight. He made a deployment error (he even admitted to it) and he choose Legolas instead of Aragorn as his King to avoid me sitting back and shooting Aragorn to death. I had to close on Legolas because of his cloak. Aragorn didn't have one.

Sixth Game I lost Priority for the last four turns and lost all three of the Heroic Move contests. I had no chance despite chewing him up badly and generally outplaying him. Mahud are deadly when they get dice to go his way.

Game Seven. My favorite games of the UKGT. Hardy's dwarves were tearing my orcs apart due to clumbsy manuevering on my part and generally being spent as a player. My last game had been taxing due to the stupid dice luck issue and it affected my mood and ability to play. Halfway through the game Hardy had lifeted my spirits enough that I was both enjoying the game and playing to my ability. It helped when my dice started evening out. Draw as we couldn't destroy each other fast enough and I made on last turn movement error that allowed him to move additional models to override my claim to the third objective.

Game Eight was great fun as well. I totally slaughtered my opponent's force, but he did the same thing to me. I made a deployment mistake (a bad one), I later misjudged whether he was going to get broken in the next turn and proactively moved models as I needed time to get to the last objective for a Major Win. He didn't get broken and I paid the price. Greed and mental exhaustion were the biggest culprits.

I played no worse than I have in the US, but I placed far lower in the standings. Yes, Febber's comments about the UKGT scoring definitely have an impact on where I sat in the long run, but I wasn't the only person with that many draws. As you can imagine there were a lot of draws in Ill Met by Moonlight, but apparantly I was the only draw for the Good side in Cornered.

Still I struggled to beat forces and players at the UK GT, yet I punked you and Steve with the same forces. So we've got to be average players. :)
Last edited by Smeagol on Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby BrentS » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:38 pm

Interesting take on your games Tim. I'm curious, did the length of the game ever come into play? I know you can play fast, even with larger armies but I've wondered about the 2 hour limits on the rounds. I know if affects the way Frank plays but in general, I think you play faster than he does.
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Postby Smeagol » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:39 pm

Played a pick up game with Adam tonight that was great fun. His Corsairs versus my Dwarves in Storm the Camp. His Corsairs and my Dwarves beat the snot out of each other. Both of our flanking mauevers worked brilliantly, but I managed to complete mine two turns earlier than he did and so had less real estate to cover. I managed to get into his camp for a Majot Win. Despite facing The Shadowlord, The Knight of Umbar, Dalmyr and Trokador (Adam's generic Corsair Captain) Balin managed to survive the fight.

Heroic Moves requires the hero calling them to move first. Adam played it that way as did every one of my opponents (and me) during the tournament. It was a great game with both of us getting torn to shreds and getting broken on the same turn. It could have gone either way. I love close games like that. My dice luck was average with us alternating who won tied combats and Heroic Move contests.
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