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Jonaer
30-11-2009, 13:32
The Fall of Ulthuan

The world is in turmoil. The Isle of Ulthuan, once a safe haven for the children of Asuryan, is besieged by all manner of creatures threatening its shores. Having had no prior knowledge of those sudden assaults, the Kingdoms of Ulthuan find themselves without allies in the inevitable war about to commence. Amongst each and every Kingdom its loyal inhabitants take to arm, ready to fight and die for the safety of all Asur. Yet without much support the battles ahead will be dire indeed. Lacking the legendary warrior elite primarily stationed in their own respective Kingdom will severely reduce the options available to the High Elven commanders leading the armies in the defence of Ulthuan. The Citizen Levy, with steadfast Spearmen and skilful Archers, will truly form the backbone of the Elven armies preparing for war.

I’ve been playing High Elves quite frequently for a long time and most of the time I’ve been fairly successful. Lately, however, I’ve had quite a lot of trouble against certain opposing armies. I’m ashamed to say that the recent lot of loses have made it apparent that I’m a bit of sore loser. Worst of all is that this obviously takes away much of the joy in winning from my opponent, something I always feel bad about afterwards. My main opponent, having watched many of the ‘notreps’ from Blue Table Painting just as I’ve, recently pointed out to me that having fun really shouldn’t be tied to whoever wins. Rather the joy should be the game itself, in the same way it’s obvious that the guys at Blue Table Painting are having a blast whatever happens to their little men.

This is the result of this very notion! I’m planning my next couple of games to be sort of a campaign with the goal being trying to enjoy the game whatever the outcome. To this end I’m bringing out some armies very much based on the story tied to each of the different Kingdoms of Ulthuan. I do this knowing that my armies will be weaker but going into the game with a mindset focused on the story I’m hoping that I’ll learn to tackle loses better, making future games more enjoying for both myself and my opponents.

For my first game I’ve decided to focus on the Kingdom of Yvresse.

Jonaer
30-11-2009, 13:37
Army of Yvresse

To reflect the Kingdom of Yvresse, I’ll have my heroes fighting amongst the famously stubborn Spearmen from the region. Magic items have been chosen with this in mind as well. Standard of Balance reflects the dwindling numbers and dark times Yvresse has gone through while yet still somehow holding on, hope still lighting their hearths however nimble it may be. The Mage and Swordmasters, devotees of Loec all, is the one ally from a neighbouring Kingdom having been able to reinforce the army.

High Elves
Prince, Blade of Sea Gold, Armour of Heroes, Gem of Courage, Shield.
Noble, Battle Standard Bearer, Standard of Balance, Heavy Armour, Shield.
Mage, Level 2, Trickster’s Pendant. Got Drain Magic, Shield of Saphery and Courage of Aenarion.

16 Lothern Sea Guards, Full Command, First Amongst Equals, Warbanner.
20 Spearmen, Full Command. Lead by Prince.
20 Spearmen, Full Command. Lead by Noble.
10 Archers, Musician.
10 Archers, Musician.

6 Silver Helms, Full Command, Shields.
17 Swordmasters, Full Command, Banner of Arcane Protection, Talisman of Loec. Lead by Mage.

2 Great Eagles.
2 Repeater Bolt Throwers.

It turned out that this first game would be against a Bretonnian army with the following list.

Bretonnia
Bretonnian Lord, Birth-Sword of Carcassone, Gilded Cuirass, Grail Vow, Shield.
Paladin, Armour of Midsummer Sun, Lance, Shield.
Paladin, Battle Standard Bearer.
Damsel of the Lady, Level 2, Icon of Quenelles, Dispel Scroll, Warhorse. Got The Howler Wind and Master of Stone.
Damsel of the Lady, Level 2, The Silver Mirror, Warhorse. Got Mistress of the Marsh and The Howler Wind.

11 Knights of the Realm, Full Command. Lead by Bretonnian Lord & Damsel.
11 Knights of the Realm, Full Command. Lead by Battle Standard Bearer.
6 Knights Errant, Full Command. Lead by Paladin.
6 Knights Errant, Full Command.
12 Peasent Bowmen, Braziers.
12 Peasent Bowmen, Braziers.

3 Pegasus Knights, Musician.

8 Grail Knights, Full Command. Lead by Damsel.

Deployment: Picture attached. The green areas are forests, the brown hills and the grey buildings.

Pre-Game Thoughts: Bretonnia seemed to be a pretty bad match up for my army since I had few troops with strength above 3. The large unit of knights would easily run through any of my units would they get the chance. Hence my plan was to try and slow them down, shot them as best I could and finally attempt to flee from charges in hope of getting some counter charges myself.

Turn 1 – High Elves: The Bretonnians decided to pray hence I got the first turn. I positioned my Silver Helms just behind the hill, making sure that if he would move anything on top of it I could charge them. Both Archer units moved up to the very edges of their respective forests, giving line of sight to all of them. Seaguards moved up as well, angling towards the middle forest and allowing the Repeater behind them to see through. Swordmasters moved slightly forward while I had one of the Eagles placed behind the middle wood and the other staying close to the Swordmasters.

In my shooting phase my Archers opposite my opponents Bowmen on the hill let loose at said unit and managed to kill three of them, causing a panic test which they failed and fled of the table. The rest of my shooting didn’t accomplish anything of note, but in my magic phase I managed to get Drain Magic through.

Turn 1 – Bretonnia: All of the knights moved ahead but no further than the hill with Pegasus knights hiding just behind it. Shooting killed a single one of my archers while his magic did nothing thanks to Drain Magic.

Turn 2 – High Elves: I moved both Spearmen units and the Repeater in the wood slightly backwards, moving out of range from any potential charges. I had my Silver Helms back up a few inches as well, hoping that they might continue slowing down the enemies advance, them fearing a potential charge themselves. Seaguards moved further ahead and the Eagle from behind the forest landed amongst the knight units, preventing any marsh moves the following turn.

Yet again my Archers did fairly well, killing off three bowmen from the unit still left on the table, causing another panic test with the same result as before – Two dead bowmen units on two turns! The rest of my shooting brought down an errant or two and magic was uneventful.

Turn 2 – Bretonnia: A unit of Knight Errants declared a charge against my Archers in the wood which decided to flee, ending up at the other side of the forest with the Errants a few inches in front of it. The Pegasus knights landed behind the Swordmasters, threatening to charge either them or the Archers, should they rally the next turn. Rest of the Knights moved steadily forwards, getting dangerously close by now.

His shooting did nothing but I feared that Assault of Stone might damage my Silver Helms since my opponent had opted to move the Damsel in the Grail Knight unit to the front rank and into line of sight of my unit. Luckily he miscast! And since I had The Trickster’s Pendant, this meant rolling twice on the table and me choosing the result. However, he rolled two results of eight, not a lot of options for me. Still, he suffered one wound on the mage.

Turn 3 – High Elves: Sticking true to the nature of my army, my Silver Helms obviously charged head on into the Grail Knights! My Archers rallied and reformed into two ranks and lined up to fight the Pegasus knights. My Spearmen backed up slightly yet again while I had my Seaguards baiting the Knights of the Realm. My other unit of Archers, having valiantly fought of all those opposing them so far (A grand two units of Peasants, but still!) begun moving out of the forest to hopefully get into line of sight in future turns. My Swordmasters moved close enough to the Silver Helms to allow Courage of Aenarion to effect them, should I get it through.

I had planned to use one of my Great Eagles to redirect a unit of Knights of the Realm, but due to the deep formation and them being so tightly packed together, my opponent and I both realised that the end result would be me having to reposition my Eagle in order to allow for the charge! So I kept my Eagles out of harms way for the time being.

My shooting killed off half of the Errants having charged my Archers earlier but unfortunately I failed to cast Courage of Aenarion during my magic phase. During combat, my Silver Helms easily killed of the Damsel but only managed to kill a single Grail Knight with the remaining attacks. The Grail Knights killed none in return but thanks to ranks and outnumber still won the fight by one. And I fled and got caught! Had I got Courage of Aenarion through I’d have stood, but no. I even realised that if my opponent had not damaged his own Damsel with a miscast, the fight would have been a draw! This didn’t bode well for my Swordmasters, which now had a unit of Grail Knights rushing into them.

Turn 3 – Bretonnia: Not taking any chances, my opponent had his units of Errants with a Paladin join his Grail Knights in the fight against my Swordmasters. His Pegasus Knights charged my Archers and the Battle Standards unit declared a charge against my Seaguards, which decided to flee. My Seaguards, standing about 13” away from the Knights, only managed to roll three for their flee distance and got caught! My Repeater standing close by fled in panic as a result. The last three Errants in front of the wood close to my Spearmen aligned to threaten my flanks should I charge the Battle Standards unit standing in front of and slightly to the left of my Spearmen units. His other large unit of Knights of the Realm moved closer as well.

During combat, the Pegasus knights killed of four Archers but they held. My Swordmasters, on the other hand, was not as lucky. My Bladelord used the Talisman of Loec but still only managed to cause a single wound against the Errants, the only unit he had contact with. The rest of my Swordmasters didn’t kill a single model. A bunch of skewered Swordmasters later, I failed to roll insane courage and was run down by both units, Grail Knights having failed the test to restrain themselves.

In the Mind of a Mad Man: At this point I was getting into a really bad mood. Over the course of one game turn I had lost three units, in no small part thanks to some bad rolling. Nor did I really see the game turning around, the large units of Knights would have little problem dealing with my Spearmen. Luckily my feelings of inevitable doom got sidetracked because of a phone call and I got some time to clear my head. Heading back into the game a couple of minutes later, I decided that what had happened so far was all because of the story. Obviously my Spearmen was meant to fend of those pesky Knights, standing steadfast as the last line of defence much as they had during the siege of Tor Yvresse. Obviously!

Onwards, men, those horse lords might shake the grounds but the quick steps of the Asur might still have them surprised. Head into the fray, for Ulthuan and the glory of Asuryan!

Turn 4 – High Elves: My Spearmen with the Battle Standard charged the opposing unit also sporting a Battle Standard, a charge from which they fled and ended up in the forest in the middle of the table. I positioned a Great Eagle in front of the Lords unit, angled away from my Spearmen with the Prince which themselves had moved forward to protect the flank of my other Spearmen unit. My Archers moved up and angled towards the middle, gaining line of sight to the enemy and my Repeater crew rallied.

My shooting brought down a knight or two and my Archers managed to stand once more in the fight against the Pegasus knights, having lost only two of their comrades.

Turn 4 – Bretonnia: Thanks to the Lord being close by, the Knights of the Realm having just fled rallied inside the forest. The Grail Knights and Errants having run of my Swordmasters returned from the pursuit and placed themselves to charge my Archers, should they continue stubbornly fighting on against the Pegasus knights. The unit of three Errants in front of the forest decided to charge the Eagle I had placed to halt the Lords unit. The Lords unit then had no choice but to remain stationary for the time being.

In combat my Eagle was mortally wounded by the Errants and attempted to flee, only to end at the mercy of the Bretonnian Lord and his Knights standing ready closely behind. My Archers finally broke and was run down, the Pegasus knights heading of the table in the pursuit.

Turn 5 – High Elves: My Spearmen joined by the Prince charged the three Errants in front of them and my other unit of Spearmen stuck to their target and charged into the forest and the cowardly knights hiding inside. My Archers moved ahead to attempt a flank charge against the knights in the forests in my last and final turn, should my Spearmen hold them in place long enough. My lone Eagle placed himself close to the Errants and Grail Knights behind the forest, preventing any marsh moved. The Repeater in the forest was moved forward, out of sight of the Errants roaming around close by, while the other Repeater saw its crew return.

The other unit of three errants fighting my Lords unit was easily defeated and routed, running through the Lords unit with my Spearmen pursuing and ending up in a fight against the Bretonnian Lord and his retinue. My other unit of Spearmen was not as lucky, not managing to kill a single enemy but suffered two casualties in return and promptly fled, getting caught and killed in the ensuing chase.

Turn 5 – Bretonnia: The Battle Standard and his unit, having pursued to far to be able to charge anything, repositioned towards my Archers while the Battle Standard himself moved out of the unit and into a position to charge my Spearmen. The Grail Knights was to far away from the battle and opted to stay where they were while the Errants moved up to be within range of my Repeater out in the open. The Pegasus Knights positioned themselves to threaten the rear of my Lords unit.

In combat my Prince managed to bring down a couple of Knights while his Lord brought down a couple of my Spearmen in return. I did manage to win the fight but my enemy held.

Turn 6 – High Elves: My units all remained stationary. The Repeater in the wood managed to kill the opposing Battle Standard while the other brought down three Knight of the Realm but the unit passed the resulting panic test. My Archers arrows were caught in The Howler Wind having been successfully cast the previous turn. In combat, my Prince called out for a challenge which was met by the Champion of the unit, the Bretonnian Lord himself cowardly hiding behind his men. The Champion was then swiftly killed, as were a few of his comrades facing three rows of spears. The Bretonnian Lord continued to hack down a few Spearmen but nevertheless lost the combat and fled. Sitting atop swift warhorses they managed to break lose from my Spearmen and headed for safety.

Turn 6 – Bretonnia: The Lords unit rallied while the other large unit of Knight of the Realm finished of my Archers with a thunderous charge. The Repeater out in the open was lost as well thanks to the Knight Errants. The game then came to an end.

Post-Game Thoughts: As I feared, the Bretonnians was a bad match up for my army but nor were my Spearmen as easily killed as I thought they would be. My two Archer units combined did manage to bring down his Bowmen as well as lock the Pegasus knights in combat for two turns. Shame on my Silver Helms and Swordmasters though, my only units with some actual punch, whom didn’t really accomplish anything. It was an interesting game though and I’m glad the timely phone call brought me around to enjoy the slaughter!

Result: Massacre for Bretonnia.

Toshiro
30-11-2009, 14:23
A very good batrep and great introduction fluff. I really like your idea of playing a campaign with a theme based on the various regions of Ulthuan even if it means somewhat weaker armies. I especially like that you do this to handle losses better to make the game enjoyable to all parties, I think that deserves very big credits and I think more players should do the same. Great initiative and I'll definitely keep following this thread for more good batreps and interesting fluff. :)

selone
30-11-2009, 16:19
I'm really liking your idea, I'd have been happy to let spearmen have stubborn in such a well designed and thoiught out idea that you're playing. Pesky Bretonnians!

danny7865
30-11-2009, 22:17
It is a brill idea

Wolfroar
02-12-2009, 13:22
Nice battle, and good report. Against so many bretonian horseman you had little chance of succes I think. I suggest taking less core troops and more specials. Dragon princes, white lions and maybe chariots could really punch those bretonnians. Maybe add a dragon mage in your army? I also play HE, but never faced brets before. They seem like a tough adversary.

danny7865
02-12-2009, 13:28
I was thinking Where is eltharion lol he'd have been first to defend yvresse lol. Anyway can't wait to see the next area to feel the wrath of invasion.....

@ Wolfroar against bretts go magic heavy seer staff lore of beasts beast coweras and the lore of metal on an archmage. Reaver knights can marchblock as can shadow warriors And RBT's are brilliant for filleting the lances. Just stop lances from charging lol.

mythic77
02-12-2009, 17:50
Great Idea and unfortunate loss.

Good to see someone focusing on the number one rule.

The only downside is for once I am cheering on a high elf.....

Seabo
02-12-2009, 18:10
Too bad man...
Always love the concept of themed armies :D
Of course, in this case facing off against an almost universal 2+Sv army, you were kinda hooched...nice report though :)

Bdt501
02-12-2009, 18:55
nice report, shame about some bad rolling or so it would appear, against good armour high elves will have problems, will be good to see the next army list and report

SevenSins
06-12-2009, 19:21
a fine rep, and kudos for going themed.
Amusing how your spearmen and archers did live up to their background, while the allied heavy hitters just got wiped