This September (17-18) was my seventh Crossroads GT
over in Horseheads, NY, but would be the first one running KOW
instead of WHFB
In 2016 the GT
as a whole had switched to the somewhat typical multi-system format since the Old World’s collapse, running two-day events for KOW
, T9A, AOS
, WMH and MFX, with various levels of attendance across them – crippled in some cases by a rash of weddings that weekend that pulled a significant number of players out of T9A and MFX in particular.
All the same, a good number of players rolled out for KOW
(15-20), including some familiar Fantasy vets. Armies had been bumped up to 2500 points for this GT
, and we wouldn’t really be using the Clash comp except for the restrictions on allies (no magic items, no duplicate heroes/monsters/war engines) along with some basic army comp (no more than 4 of any unit, no more than 4 flyers).
My list was heavily influenced by what new stuff the busy, humid summer would allow me to get painted:
War Chief – the boomstick
Warlock – fenulian amulet
Warlock – inspiring talisman
Blight Lord – bane-chant
Blight Lord – bane-chant
Blight Lord – bane-chant
Blight Horde – fire oil
Death Engine – vile sorcery
Death Engine – vile sorcery
In addition to partially rebasing the army, I managed to paint up my Apostates of Darkness at long last, along with a second ringwraith-warlock
Figure I’ll toss some game recaps your way over the next days. It should be noted these were timed games with 60 min a player, which only messed with me Game 1, where we decided not to push for a Turn 7 due to exhaustion / low clocks.
ROUND 1: LOOT
FORCES OF NATURE
The Green Lady
Tree Herder – medallion of life
Centaur Chief – bow; boots of the seven leagues
Unicorn – inspiring talisman
Druid – mounted, bane-chant, surge; amulet of fire-heart
Druid – mounted, bane-chant, surge; war-bow
Green Lady’s Wild Guard – brew of sharpness
Air Elemental Horde – brew of strength
Water Elemental Horde – holy hand grenades
Earth Elemental Horde – amulet of thorns
Fire Elemental Horde – diadem of dragon-kind
Forest Shambler Horde – chant of hate
Nature grabs all the loot markers first turn and dares me to come take them. I am unduly afraid of the Wild Guard and stall on the right flank, while preparing to grind on the left and showing the chip on my shoulder in the center, as I try to one-round the Tree Herder. 17 lightning shots and 26 engine rounds later, the thing still stands with 10 wounds on it, all of which are regened or healed next round. I only feel a little foolish, as we both knew that was the most likely outcome …
We grind on the left (MRF + Blights + Blights vs Shamblers + Water Elementals), which eventually tips my way. The Fire Elementals are erased by my weight of fire (Engines rolled 12-13 shots all game) and the Earth Elementals receive a little lightning before grinding in the center.
The center grind eventually sees the Earth Elementals off, as I kept focusing them and ignoring the invincible Herder. The central Blights pay for that, eventually popping to the Herder, but such is their fate. Meanwhile, I realize the Wild Guard have pretty low Nerve and manage to jump on them with Brutes + Blights, which doesn’t work out for the tree people. At this point he just has his heroes + the Air Elementals and is down a loot marker, but he’s ready to make his power play …
The Air Elementals jump out of combat with a Blight carpet and charge into a Death Engine waiting in my zone. They bop each other a bit, then the Air Elementals jump to the left, lining up 1” from the flank of a victorious Blight unit with a marker. An easy surge and 36 attaks later, those Blight are dead and he has his second marker! I complain quietly about Clash comp invalidating just this type of thing, but admit I could have prevented a lot of that by blocking landing zones with heroes, etc. I chunk a couple characters down – including killing the unicorn with the boomstick and a spiked 10-10 rout test – and keep the Herder busy, however I need to kill those Air Elementals, which I can’t seem to hold in combat. Eventually the Rat-Fiend, having worked his way around the left flank, long bombs into the flank of the marauding Air Elementals, trashing them and reclaiming the marker.
Great game and a great start to the tournament. Up next: BROGRES!
ROUND 2: DOMINATE
OGRES + BASILEA
Army Standard – healing charm (?)
Army Standard – war-bow
Red Goblin Biggit – fleabag
Shooter Horde – brew of keen-eyeness
Shooter Horde – blessing of the gods
Siege Breaker Horde
Siege Breaker Horde
Red Goblin Scouts
To paraphrase my opponent: “I mean, I couldn’t figure out what else to use these Stormcast for”
So yea, this feels like the
2500 Ogres list, rolling out in a mission about stuffing high cost units into the center. I knew I wasn’t in the running here, but felt like a draw could certainly be in the cards with some luck?
Our deployments saw us split (ironically) into two flanks, with a very heavy left (2x Siege Breakers + Elohi + Ur + Shooters + annoying Gobs + ASB vs MRF + both Engines + 2x Blight + 2x Brute) and problematic right (Grok + 2x Giants + Shooters + ASB vs 2x Blight + Brute + lots of lightning). He takes first turn and slams down the left flank with angels, chunking out some damage with Shooters, but not much because Stealthy or Cover. I know I need to do something unexpected or he’s just going to dismantle me without any reprisal. My War Chief gingerly pats the MRF on his sluggy rump and sends him forward to bait the Siege Breakers.
Ogres take the bait and pounce on the MRF. He detonates spectacularly, but the right Breakers are not in a good place and get themselves flanked by waiting Blight! Useless shields are useless and the Breakers die, however gak breaks out all along that flank.
One Engine dies to Elohi and is countered by a fresh Engine, as the Ur is mobbed by Brutes. This more or less works out for the Brutes, tearing the Ur-Elohi down before being clubbed to death by the Elohi over the next few turns. It doesn’t work out great for the Engine, which is eventually killed by the second Breakers after they take care of their Blight problem.
That flank eventually resolves with my War Chief + Blight Lord pilling on the ASB and decapitating him. Previously the War Chief had popped the Scouts with his boomstick, followed by headshotting the Biggit the next turn. Result
The right flank involved focused lightning into the left Giant, who died to the second wave of Blights in this photo, the first having been crunched by the double Giants. For his part Grok power flubbed against the second Blight Horde (1-1-1-1-5 for hits), and was riddled with lightning until he stopped moving. Those lurking Brutes helped take out the second Giant, then retreated to their watery cover (which worked great against the Shooters relentlessly targeting them). I think that second Blight unit was obliterated by Shooters Turn 6, lest they contest the center.
End game came with the left Shooters having scampered into the domination zone, with the assumption the game was a foregone conclusion. However I had a LOT of lightning left and unleashed on the Shooters, getting them to a rerolled 8-10 rout test … which I couldn’t make happen.
I was happy I could make him sweat a bit at the end, although I definitely felt like the punching bag of a much stronger meta-list.
Next Up: Fundead!
ROUND THREE: PILLAGE (5)
Vampire on Undead Pegasus – heal; ensorcelled armor
Vampire Lord – heal, mounted
Liche King – bane-chant, heal; amulet of fire-heart
Necromancer – inspiring talisman
Soul Reaver Cavalry Regiment – potion of the caterpillar
Werewolf Horde – brew of strength
Zombie Troll Horde – blessing of the gods
Skeleton Spearmen Horde – scrying gem
Wraith Troop – fire-oil
Revenant Regiment – two-handed weapons
Third game of Day 1 and I’m up against a gent from our sister club, the Unplugged Gamers
, and have officially moved on to vodka for the evening
Green things roll out first and pump lightning into the Trolls anchoring the Undead center, but can’t buy a bucket. The flanks are particularly concerning – Werewolves to the left of me, Soul Reaver Cav to the right – but I stay frosty and start turning my flanks in while sending Brutes out to be punchy speedbumps.
Undead opening sees Werewolves screaming down the left flank (off shot) but an otherwise restrained amble forward. I retaliate by removing some Ghouls and splattering the Trolls, freeing up the center.
My attempts to trap the SCR or force them to waste time on the Brutes fails (and my Brute counter-flank is brutalized by the mounted Vamp, who’s way more hitty than I expected), however this will take several turns of grinding to sort out, given my main battleline time to beat up deadites.
Meanwhile, combat is joined in a big way. As the SRC and Blights grind on the right, an Engine countercharges some Zombies (does 5 wounds and pops them on a double 10), Warlock + War Chief slam lightning into the Revenants (and rout them on a 10), the last two Ghoul units die to Blight and Engine countercharges, and the leftmost Blight dance with the Werewolves and their Lykanis. All told a brilliant Turn ~3 for me … then I make a mistake.
Wanting to keep the left Engine alive after killing its Ghouls, I back it up 3”, which ends up obviously exposing the flank of the Blight holding the Werewolves. Neither of us saw this until his turn began, and I was pretty embarrassed, particularly as I’ve totally thrown 200+ point monsters under the bus to buy time in other games. Anyway, those Blight get flanked by the Skeleton horde and evaporate.
It’s ok though, as I have more Blights and a lot of lightning. Another Blight horde hits the Skeletons and ends them, but not before the War Chief one-shots the Necromancer (by rolling a double 10 to rout) and a storm of lightning and Engine fire removes the Werewolves, just leaving the Lykanis on that flank to retreat and claim a marker.
The right has resolved into just the Soul Reavers, the mounted Vamp and the Liche King, against the tatters of my army in the center. (The Pegasus Vamp went ham against the MRF early in the game, and was devoured for her trouble.) That Engine in the background eats it, but unless we go to Turn 7 it’s looking like a draw on pillage counters …
Fun game with a ton of carnage and a stunning number of 10s from me for rout tests, which is becoming my specialty in KOW
With Day 1 in the bag, we grab food and drinks, play a game of Dead of Winter (so good!) and some Kings of NY and eventually turn in for the night.
Up Next: Night-Stalkers!
ROUND FOUR: INVADE
Void Lurker – ensorcelled armor
Horror – bane-chant; amulet of fire-heart
Blood Worm Legion – brew of sharpness
Reaper Horde – blessing of the gods
Butcher Horde – chant of hate
Shadowhound Regiment – potion of the caterpillar
Nightmare Regiment – diadem of dragon-kind
Spectre Regiment – brew of keen-eyeness
There were two Night-Stalker armies at the event: one made out of Bones/Tyranids and spamming the usual culprits (Fiends, Shadowhounds, Mind-Screech, Terror, etc), and a PIP one made of out Cthulhu Wars and with a ton of variety. Come Sunday morning, I’m up against the C-Wars one! Which would be a lot cooler if it weren’t Invade, a scenario my army and combined arms / reactive playstyle is really not good at. In my mind I’m playing for a draw, and am pretty terrified of almost everything in his list, but the Blood Worms and Terror more than anything.
I apologize for not getting a wider shot of the game start, but he deployed (L to R) spread across the board length: Worms, Hounds, Nightmares, Reapers, Horror, Butchers, Void Lurker, Terror, Apparition, Mind-Screech, and Spectres. I did my usual refused flank, hugging the right side across from all the monsters and accepting that the left flank was a) lost; and b) going to be a problem sooner than I wanted to admit.
Stalkers go first and hurtle down the left flank, shamble up the center, and lead with the Terror on the right. In an echo of Game 1, I respond by lighting up the Terror, doing 10 wounds despite horrible Engine rolls (8-9 shots all game), and failing to pump the 10 rout test. So it is.
I make, however, Mistake #1 in the process, forgetting to move up my rear guard Brutes and getting them charged by the Lurker, escorting him into my backfield in the process (they actually take two turns to kill and get a few smacks in, but still something I meant to avoid). He keeps steaming into my left flank and pressuring the center (we’re in a standoff in the middle until his fast flankers can pivot in), and the Terror heals up a lot and generally makes me sad. Tired of shooting the Terror and pretty encouraged by its Def
3+, I charge in some Blights to beat him up, and figure what the hell, why not some Brutes too? More attaks is more better, m’right? The Brutes add a single wound (hitting Ensared stuff is hard!), but I get the Terror down to a 7-8 rout test, but can’t manage that either.
Annnnnd so I realize Mistake #2. That multi-charge, which effectively got me nothing, pushed the Blight so far out to the left that the waiting Butchers could flank them. I am filled with laments, as it means both the Blight and the Brutes are killed. Things are bad in the backfield as well, with the Lurker free and looking at the rear arcs of both of my leftmost Blights. In response I light up the Lurker, getting him down to a 7-8 rout (which I can’t roll), and sending the Rat-Fiend into the victorious Butchers. That battle lasts a surprisingly long time, going until his Turn 6! Go MRF!
Late game looks like this, with the Lurker having reared and killed a Blight unit (it was that or get stuck to the front then reared by Reapers), the Brutes sacrificed to the Blood Worms, the Shadowhounds countercharged by that lower-left Blight horde (which was mangled on the charge but held), and the upper-right Blight about to be dismembered by Terror + Spectre flank. Most of those green things die, though the Lurker is ended by lightning + Engine love.
The Worm Legion getting ready to murder some Brutes, as they do. They went on to do the same to the Blight down there, which couldn’t escape.
I’ve lost just about everything at this point, but I can at least make it hurt for him. We pump lightning into the Terror, prompting it to charge my War Chief, who holds solid but can’t use his boomstick in Turn 6. I’ve got enough guns to riddle the Butchers with wounds, finally routing them on like a 5, and have one more shot at a 10 for the Terror, but can’t work the magic from the night before.
Giving up that Blight flank was pretty mortifying, and invade was never going to be easy for me, however I felt pretty abandoned by my dice during this game. Nothing worked – not just the high risk stuff I usually shoot for, but even simple things like rolling a 6 on two dice or rolling 4’s to hit with lightning – when I needed something to go my way. I lost momentum pretty badly around Turn 3, tried to get excited again Turn 4, then slumped away again. That said, fun opponent with a cool army that I look forward to seeing painted.
Oh, and Mistake #3: I kept accidently putting the War Chief too close to his Butchers, Lurker and Terror, meaning that even if I could roll a 5-7 for rout, I’d have to do it twice. This actually saved his Butchers (and doomed my MRF) one turn, although I was able to push through it on the Lurker. Speaking of the War Chief, just to solidify his badassery, he was able to boomstick off the Horror at some point
Up Next: Orcs & Goblins!
ROUND FIVE: KILL & PILLAGE
ORCS + GOBLINS
Krudger on Winged Slasher – ensorcelled armor
Godspeaker – bane-chant, heal; inspiring talisman
Flagger – healing charm
Gore Rider Regiment
Fleabag Rider Horde
Big Rocks Thrower
Going into this I have a pretty vague idea what O&G do in KOW
, but overall I’m impressed by all those units and the potential for violence. And that Fleabag horde is enormous! I know Nv is going to be his undoing, especially when he points out that his Goblins have no inspiring of any kind O_O
Greenskins go first, advancing cautiously for the most part (to keep pace with the dudes shoving through difficult terrain), except for the Orclings marauding forward to victory and the Gores and Fleabags hurtling down the left flank. The Nurgle response is to kill gobs: the Spitters explode, the trombone pops, the Mincer absorbs a bunch of punishment but sticks around, and the left Trolls begin to feel the lightning. A Blight horde advances to tempt the Kudger in …
… but I’m an idiot and leave 0.25” of the Blight flank open to the Fleabag horde. He offers to not take it, however I assure him I could have avoided giving that flank really easily, so game on. The Kudger + Orclings come in to help, but the Fleabags annihilate the unit themselves. The rest of the greenies shuffle forward, as the Gores enter a standoff with Brute + Blight on the left. Thrilled to be alive, the Mincer pumps ahead full.
As was his destiny, the Kudger disappears under lightning + Engine fire, and I press the issue on the right flank, stuffing Blights + Rat-Fiend into the grill of the Ax horde.
He sends the Ax into the Blight, as well as the Fleabags into an Engine, the Mincer into the other Engine, and the Orclings + Trolls into the (fire-oil) Blight waiting for them. All of the Nurglekin hold this turn then counter-charge the next – except against the Orclings, who I’m leaving alive to be as annoying to the waiting Greatax as possible. I begin hunting his characters with lightning, splashing wounds across the War Drums and Flagger, though they all hold for now. The War Chief wrecks the Mincer with his boomstick, then the Ax bite it with the help of the MRF. Also, the Blight facing off against the Gore have pivoted to be able to engage the Fleabags in my next turn …
Fairly gummed up, the Greenskins head back in: Gore to Brutes, Fleabags to Engine, Orclings + Trolls into Blight, more Trolls into MRF. Everybody but the Engine holds, including the Brutes fighting the fluffy Gore regiment!
More fighting: Blights pounce on the Fleabags (kill ‘em), Blights refuse to engage the Orclings, Blights punch some Trolls (bounce), MRF cuddles other Trolls (nada). More shooting: Flagger + War Drum die, leaving the right flank in a bad place, annnd the Morax are wavered, I think by the boomstick
A shot after he’s bounced off the Blight wall (Greatax did not hit as hard as expected – thanks ensnare!) and is about to be counter-charged. After the Engine and lightning splashed across the Godspeaker, War Drum and Morax (killing all of them), the Greatax and left Trolls both died.
Last roll of the game was this Blight Lord nimble-charging the Goblin Wiz hiding around the tower, landing a single wound and popping him on, you guessed it, a 10.
My Greenskin opponent wasn’t overly shocked or sad by the result – he’s apparently never won a game of KOW
, despite winning multiple 40K GT
’s – and we talked a little about how his army seems to be solid until it suddenly melts away mid-game. Go fig.
I’ll update this with final thoughts once the results are posted somewhere, though I’m fairly certain I was smack in the middle of everything, as usual. That said, these were some of the finest games of KOW
I’ve had so far, with most of them coming right down to the end with crazy dice, mistakes, and so on. I can handle the crazy dice, but dibs on fewer sad flanks