Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A Trip 'Oop North'

Myself an Neil still manage to get a couple of games in a year, despite him having moved away.  On this occasion I took on the role of travelling and drove up to his family home in the Darlington area for a couple of games of Kings of War.

we found we had enough for 1750 points, and so I set to selecting my force from the realms of Men:

Mostly regiments of Pike, supported by Crossbows, Knights and Light Horse.  Plus a few Swordsmen, Ogres and a couple of characters.

By contrast Neil fielded a force of undead with a lot of infantry and cavalry.

So we set up for a straight battle and got to it after a rambling catch up on the last few months.

Neil hadn't faced a Human army before, and wasn't prepared for how it works in concert with one another.  A human general will usually have access to a great variety of cheap, competent troops, but the real key is to use units together in mutually supporting operations.  Other armies with large heavy hitting units cannot protect their flanks, as Neil was about to learn.

The Humans quickly began to encircle the undead, and used crossbow and horse archer fire to soften up priority targets.

Neil allowed himself to be drawn in to a fight with swordsmen in a ruined temple, even though my Ogres would threaten his flank if he didn't break them straight away.  With the aid of my general's inspiring presence the swordsmen lasted the one turn needed.  Leaving the Ogres ready to pounce.

On the opposite flank Pikes and Cavalry operated together to isolate and defeat in detail the undead units.  Key to using any army in Kings of War is to dictate the sequence of combat so that attacks only occur when advantageous to yourself.  There is a lot less luck involved than in Warhammer!

With much of his cavalry destroyed on his left, Neil was now on the back foot and was trying to feed in more infantry.  But it was coming in piecemeal; which was it's undoing.

The Ogres turned to smash another unit that had impulsively charged a unit of crossbows:

No across the board, the Undead found they were never fighting one unit, but two, or even three.

The multiplying factor of flank attacks, Pikes and multiple units meant that even hordes had no chance.  Again this is how the Humans operate, bait and hold, then flank.

At the end of the first game the Undead were obliterated.

After a pub lunch we had a second game and this time played for objectives stretched along a river.

I certainly benefited from some stunning dice rolls!

But in the end the Undead were able to hold two out of three objectives, for a win. They lost a lot more troops, but achieved the tactical outcomes required for victory. 

Thus honour was restored!

It's always good to get a game against Neil, and I think it was a valuable learning process for him.  Until the next time...

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