Empire vs. Tomb Kings (750pts) – 5/31/11   3 comments

Now, normally I post my battle reports in the DakkaDakka WHFB Battle Reports forum and then link them to my blog(s), but I felt that this Tale of Gamers needs a nice kick in the pants.  So, I’m writing it here and I will link it there instead.  I like spicing things up once in a while.

Speaking of spiced-up things, ready for a Empire vs. Tomb Kings rematch?  If you have read the report from our last battle, I’d suggest you take a quick peek at that one first.  Mostly because the outcome of this game is an utter reversal of that game’s outcome.  Andrew and I have faced each other plenty, plenty of times, but this is our second game with Empire and Tomb Kings, so we are still trying to figure out the dos, don’ts and can’ts of our armies.

So, if you are up to date on all (one) of the previous battles between our Tale of Gamer challenge armies, I present to you the following.  Once again I am folding both player turns into a single image.  This is both because it makes it much quicker to complete the images (as always, using Battle Chronicler), and at such small point levels there’s not enough going on to warrant more than this.

Army Lists


  • Captain (General), mounted
  • Captain (BSB), on foot
  • Wizard Lord, Level 3, Light (Shem’s Burning Gaze, Pha’s Protection, Birona’s Timewarp)
  • 20 Swordsmen
  • 5 Knightly Orders
  • 10 Greatswords

Tomb Kings

  • Tomb Prince (General)
  • Liche Priest (Hierophant), Level 1 (Augment Signature Spell)
  • 20 Skeleton Warriors
  • 8 Skeleton Archers
  • 3 Skeleton Chariots
  • 2 Tomb Swarms
  • Screaming Skull Catapult

For the Empire list, this was another “experimental” one.  I wanted to try out the Greatswords, no shooting, and a level 3 Wizard.  I’m going to preface the game with, “I miss shooting already, especially the Pistoliers to hunt down that Catapult,” and “a Level 3 is awesome…but that’s a lot eggs in one basket.”

Andrew wanted to test out a couple of things as well, such as the Swarms and the Catapult.

Set Up and Deployment

We rolled up two Mysterious Forests (or Mysterious Palm Groves to keep to theme, as the turf was beige and I was fighting TK), a set of walls, a Dwarf Brewhouse (left) and a regular building (top right).

Andrew started deploying, but I finished first.  I got the +1 and won the roll to go first.  I’ll mention now that we both rolled a 1 for this roll.  For one of us, at least, this was a sign of things to come.

Turn 1

I started off by just moving forward.  Nothing fancy.  The Swordsmen left what had turned out to be an Abyssal Grove (again, sticking with the theme).  The Greatswords stopped just in front of the other grove, just in case.  It was in the Magic phase that I realised that Pha’s Protection was going to be useless against the modifier-ignoring Tomb Kings.  Unless that Asaph rule does not pertain to spells…I’ll have to check that one.  I chose to try Gaze first, which was dispelled.  Next I chose to try Pha’s instead of Birona’s for some strange reason.  At least it goes off.  And now I realise I put my Wizard in the wrong corner, so the Greatswords aren’t even affected!  More on my dumb-dumb decisions later.

On Andrew’s turn he failed a charge with the Chariots into the Knights.  The Archers swung around and the Warriors moved up to help the Chariots next turn, in case I Charged them.  Magic was not important.  Shooting saw three Swordsmen fall to the Archers, and the Catapult shot scatter 10″ away.  The best part was Andrew used my dice.  So we said what if he had use his own?  10″  in the SAME direction!  It was uncanny.  Again, another sign of the silly dice-related things to come.

Turn 2

Ready for this?  This is where things get ugly.  Fast.

SO, first I decide to charge my Knights into the Warriors.  The ones with spears and the General, who gives everyone WS5.  Okay.  Yeah.  I should have charged the Chariots instead, and then had my Swordsmen come in and protect the Knights’ flank.  Yeah.  I know.  But don’t worry, it gets worse.  So with an average amount of dice to cast I lob 6 at the upped version of Timewarp.  I roll 26, with no double 6s.  So Andrew has to beat 29 with a Level 1 dude and I think 5 dice or something.  What does he get?  Double 6s.  UGH!  It’s okay! I’ve got the Gaze, it’s not all bad.  BAM! Snake-eyes.  Seriously?  Wicked-GIJoe-ninja, I like.  Failing a 5+ spell with a Level 3, I don’t.  So off to Combat, which just did not get any better.  I challenged his General with my General…and only managed a single wound.  Not surprising.  I should have attacked the unit.  Next I only manage to kill two Warriors.  TWO!  With five so-called Knights.  And what happens in retaliation?  Yeah…I lose THREE Knights.  THREE.  Five wounds to save I roll THREE ones!  On a 2+ armour save!  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

So, the Chariots charge into the Swordsmen, and the Archers move closer.  Magic is dispelled.  The Archers’ shots fail or are saved, and the Catapult kills a single Greatsword.  And here comes the real fun.  We start with the Chariots and Swordsmen.  3d6 S4 Impact Hits later, I think I lost 7 guys.  After flubbing literally all but one attack, which is saved, the crew and horses kill another 2.  Not only have I lost 9 Swordsmen, but I’ve lost my rank bonus and thus my Steadfast-ness.  Guess who breaks.  Right.  They fly away, but are easily caught by the Chariots.  *chompchompchomp*  In other news my Knights manage to kill only a single Warrior.  The Warriors kill a single Knight (so much for a 1+ armour save…against SKELETONS!).  His ranks mean I have to test.  I fail.  BSB re-roll! I fail again.  Serious?  It’s okay, they’re cav, they can outrun…what do you mean I rolled 2-2-1?  A four?  Warriors roll a 5, and the Knights and General are caput.  So I have now lost all but one unit, making up 223 points between the BSB and the Greatswords.

Turn 3

I kinda want to see if the Greatswords can do anything.  They charge into the Warriors.  Battle ensues.  They lose a guy, but kill a few!  I win combat, but he’s steadfast, rolls a 10 (General’s Ld9), so loses only one more dude.  Ugh.  At least the Greatswords didn’t uber-fail like the Knights did.

Anyway, we figured that the Chariots could be on me by Turn 4, so we called it.

Final Thoughts

So, even with this outcome, I had fun, as usual.  If you look through my game reports on DakkaDakka you’ll see that I almost always play Andrew, and no matter what happens we enjoy ourselves.  Although I’ll note usually I win.  Which is fine, because when we used to play Warmachine he usually won.  But that’s for another Tale of Gamers.

I was disappointed with how the Knights did.  I know they can do better.  I also chose the wrong unit to charge.  I made a lot of mistakes, really.  Right from spell choice I was doing things wrong.  I’m going to blame the heat.  We played at my house and my wife and I are refusing to use the A/C just yet.  I’m also going to blame the lighting.  We played in what is technically the dining room, which has VERY little lighting.  That needs to be remedied.  I’ll also blame baby-brain.  We played on Tuesday, making my newborn only 12 days old.  I haven’t gotten a lot of sleep. 

So yeah.  That’s why I did all of the silly things that I did.

Thankfully I learned a little.  Like, don’t spend so much on Lords and Heroes.  And, no Magic is probably better than no Shooting.  I learned some other things, too, but for now I’m happy that I got in a game.

Hopefully next week we can play again.  We might not be able to bump up to 1000 points yet, but maybe 800.  I really don’t enjoy these small-point games, even if they take little time to play.  I’d rather sacrifice time spent playing and be able to field a few more units, and do more things.

Anyway, thanks for reading.  This is going to count as my Week 4 update.  Again, little baby means not a lot of hobby time right now.  Although I think it’s getting better (I was able to both play a game AND write a report for it in the span of two days).  Things are looking up!  Well…not for those Knights…three 1s…yeesh!…


3 responses to “Empire vs. Tomb Kings (750pts) – 5/31/11

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  1. Love the report, very detailed. I do believe you guys made a rules mistake on the Tomb Kings combat loss in turn 3. Unlike Daemons, Undead don’t roll to see how many people they lose, comparing to their leadership. Instead, they simply lose additional wounds equal to the amount they lost combat by.

  2. Thanks for posting, I really like your style. I was going to mention about the combat resolution in turn 3, but Andrew beat me to it.

    How are you finding such small battles? In our early games, we considered starting at 500 or 750 points but finally settled on 1000 points for learning the basics of the army. I didn’t think the army lists I could prepare were too satisfactory below that level since up to about 1000 points it’s really hard to get a BSB in as well as a general if you want a decent number of bodies in your units (now that I come to think of it, that is probably just a Beastmen problem). On the other hand, it sounds like you are only using miniatures you have, which I applaud heartily.

    • Hey argentbadger,

      Same problem with the Tomb Kings. I really want a general, a herald, and a tricked out hierophant but with the need for bulk in units there is just no room at this point size. The end of this month we jump to 1000 and things will really open up for everyone. Thanks for checking us out!



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