It's been a while since I was last massacred. In fact it has only ever happened one time, and it was my first game ever back in the 90s when I was playing undead and my opponent was fielding a Bretonnian army with the sword of cournne on a flying emperor dragon that landed in the midst of my army and caused the whole thing to go poof along with a book of ashur'ed mage with banishment.
So yesterday was our first league game and I was up against chaos with my tomb kings. I've been playing a while, and my opponent was a buddy we just got into the hobby. This was his third game ever.
We rolled up a wizard tower which gave him access to all spells from his lore for his wizard: Death. Of course with death comes the Purple Sun. We both fielded level 2 wizards. Mine was my heirophant which I gave a 4+ ward to like I always do but no points for magic defense.
He ends up on the side with the wizard tower and claims it to get all six spells.
The game goes pretty good until Turn 4. Up until then I've had to deal with dispelling the purple sun thrown on six dice every turn. Turn two he irresistable forced it off but then rolled miscast on himself and had it center on him, but chaos has high INIT and so it didn't do anything.
Turn four it went off again on a 25 (the big version). I rolled bad on the dispel. Now up until this point, the game is pretty tight. I had light of deathed his lord on manticore, killing the manticore and the lord joined a unit of marauders nearby. I had also just run his knights off with a flank charge from my skeletons. He had killed my sphinx with his knights and a skeleton.
My tomb guard were preparing to engage his marauders with his lord (and my tomb king was in my unit so that would have been fun) and his warriors were still a ways off. All in all it was looking like a good game but going to the tomb kings on a minor victory.
Then the purple sun hit.
He rolled a 10 on the artillery dice which meant it moved in a 30" line and was the big template. It hit every one of my models except for my catapult. With an init of 2 and my characters at a 3... the game was over.
Now granted there were some things that I could have done better, plus the odds of what happened happening were slim. He had to:
1) get the wizard tower
2) get the side with the wizard tower
3) have survived his first miscast (he rolled a 7 which basically ended his magic phase)
4) have survived when it went off on him the first time (he failed, but league rules grant a re-roll per game for painted units to encourage painting so the re-roll saved him)
5) roll an 8 or a 10 on the artillery dice to shred my entire army and kill the heirophant and tomb king to cause the rest of the army to crumble.
Of course all of that happened but the odds were bad.
On my end, I failed to bring a dispel scroll (that's not happening again) and should have used the spinx to fly to the back and deal with the wizard, but instead kept him as a support unit to try to outflank the knights (that part worked in a way, he caused the knights to charge him and then get flanked by the skeletons which ran his knights off)
I still have a bad taste in my mouth after that though but I am chalking it up to that's part of the game and if a wizard has access to those spells, he becomes the #1 priority to kill. Still... that was my first time getting rolled off the table since my very first game way back when.