Saturday, April 9, 2016

Far Harad goes to war!

I got together with John from DCHL last night for a few games of the Middle Earth Strategy Battle Game (SBG).  That's the new name GW will be giving the system as they revise it this year.  I like that a lot better than "The Hobbit SBG" which was very limiting as a title.  

Anyway I had painted up just over 500 points of the Mahud from Far Harad and wanted to give them a spin.  My army list consisted of:

Mahud King on camel with war spear and shield
2 Mahud Raiders with war spear
3 Mahud Raiders with blowpipe and shield
6 Mahud warriors with spear and shield

Mahud Tribesmaster on camel with war spear and shield
7 Half-Trolls
5 Mahud Warriors with hand weapon and shield

For the first game, John took Numenoreans.  

Isildur with 11 warriors with spear or hand weapon and shield
Captain with 11 archers
Captain with 11 warriors with spear or hand weapon and shield  

We played Scenario 3. "Hold Ground" from the Hobbit SBG rulebook.  This mission features 3 win conditions: holding a central point, wounding or killing the enemy leader, and breaking the enemy army.  It also has a randomized deployment system, which resulted in John's army deploying mostly on one side of the table and mine following in the same place!!  

The Mahud start on top of the Numenoreans, who are facing the wrong way!  Ambush!

One unit of Numenoreans ended up in the middle.  They would move toward the center to hold the objective.

The Numenoreans won initiative but the Mahud king called a Heroic move and won a roll-off with the archer captain.  The Camels slammed home causing several automatic casualties with their big spiky tusk attachments.  

The remaining warriors run for the magic drum in the middle.  

The Mahud cause a lot of casualties but also take a few back.  The half-trolls prove almost unstoppable with 2 attacks, fight and strength 5 each! Over the next two turns of fighting, I almost break the Numenorean force before the other warriors reach the objective.

But I was a few casualties shy due to some awful rolls, and now they have the point!  This means if I break the enemy force from now on,  John collects 12 VP right away for these lads.  Hmm...miscalculation for Harad.

As the remaining Numenoreans on the hill prepare to die, a few Mahud start wandering toward the center.

Isildur refuses to go quietly and slays the Mahud king!

But the Mahud are too many and the half-trolls end the line of Gondor.

However, these last casualties break the Numenoreans.  We roll to continue for one more turn but I cannot reach the objective.  The game ends on a roll of a 2 and John wins 15 VPs to 6!

Despite wiping out 2/3 of John's force my army did not play to the mission and paid the price.  Here is the Numenorean archer captain who refused to die dancing a jig in celebration!

That game went fast so we decided to play another.  I kept the same force and John swapped in Moria goblins.  IIRC, he took:

12 goblins with shield and sword

Goblin captain
12 goblins with shield and sword

Goblin captain
12 goblins with shield and sword

Goblin captain
11 goblins with bow
War drum

This time we rolled up "The High Ground" which was basically the same mission with a hill instead of a point, and conventional deployment.

My forces all rolled to be in the center, so I took the hill.  John staggered his deployment, placing his archers on another hill and setting up to flank my line.    

Goblin view

Winning priority, I advanced to the hill edge.  I did not want to let the horde get on the hill at all if I could stop it.  An imposing line of half-trolls formed my front rank.

A number of goblins charged but several hung back after failing their courage rolls.  Even the war drum could not convince them to charge half-trolls!

I counter-attacked with camelry.  A few blowpipes even got to shoot, killing a goblin or two!  Predictably most of the goblins lost in melee, the first turn 2 turns seeing a 7-1 kill ratio.

I won priority and charged to the bottom of the hill.  My plan was to keep the goblins off and break them before they could put their numbers on the hill.  If they made it they could win even after being broken, so I could not afford to cede any ground.

Battle is engaged in earnest.  Some bow fire from the goblins has little effect and they miss a turn shooting due to windy conditions.

The camelry roll up the flanks as Durburz joins the fray.  

The wall of half-trolls will not be denied, despite one brave goblin captain slaying one of the beast-men.

After one more charge by the Mahud, the goblins are broken.  The game would continue on a 3+, but we rolled a 2 and the game ended!  With complete control of the hill and having broken the goblin army, the Mahud win 15-0.  

Conclusion:  We had two enjoyable and fast games.  I took my eye off the prize in the first game and my gamble on slaying my way to victory did not pay off.  Conversely, in the second game I managed to take and control the hill.  The goblins had no answer to the half-trolls.  John probably needed a cave troll to add some real punch to his force.  The war drum did not help that much as there is not a great advantage in charging half-trolls with goblins in any case!  We are still getting up to speed on the rules and these smaller games were much more manageable for that purpose.  Next weekend there will be a SBG tournament at Huzzah Hobbies which I will attend, so tune in next time!  


Beast 44a said...

Good looking minis and battle. Thanks for posting - added to my weekly roundup:

Black Knight said...

Thank you!