Friday, 16 May 2014

The Battle of the Trollshaws - Part 4 (Turn 4)

At the end of Turn 3 of the Battle of the Trollshaws, Angmar had lost 5 units and Rhudaur had lost none, however 3 units were now down to one stand each. The combat also spilled over into the new turn.


The turn again opened with Angmar's Command phase. One unit of Warband was unengaged in combat from the previous turn. This unit, seeing its fellows being cut to pieces by the Knights, used its Initiative to charge in to the flank of the Knights.

The Shaman, watching the carnage unfold before him, decided to get the Trolls down from Forest Hill to help out. However the tyranny of distance and a milieu of other penalties meant that he had a -5 penalty to his command role. He would have to role a 3 or less to get their attention! Sadly, he rolled a 5. Not even his 1 point of Might could help here.

Meanwhile the Cargul, who was still attached to the Marauders from the combat last turn, signalled the Warg Chief to come to the Marauders aid. The command penalty was -4 due to their distance and the fact they were in dense terrain. The presence of the Warg Chief however meant that a leader can add +1 to their command role when ordering Wargs. The Cargul kept signalling the Warg Chief, but (due to its command role of 7) failed in getting the Wargs to move. The Warg Chief must have been scratching it's fleas, the stupid mutt!

Having failed its command role, Angmar's Command phase was now over.

Angmar then moved to its Shooting phase. The Shaman proved his magical prowess by casting Foul Frenzy on the Warband that had just charged the Knights in the flank. This gave that unit a +1 attack per stand, meaning they received 4 attacks instead of the usual 3. Obviously the slaughter of their comrades had roused the Warband to a vicious fury, hacking away wildly at the Knights.

The Cargul decided that the same spell would be useful for its own combat situation. However, the melee must have been too vicious because it was distracted enough to fail at casting Foul Frenzy.

With the Shooting phase now over, Angmar's turn now move to the Combat phase.

The Marauders delivered 7 hits to the Retainers 2. Both sides in the conflict were able to armour save one hit each. The Retainers where however killed to a man (and his horse).

Having wiped out the Retainers in its first phase of their combat, the Marauders Advanced into the last unit of Retainers near by. They too had been reduced to one stand from the combat in the previous turn. This last unit of Retainers didn't stand a chance, its solitary stand being cut down with 7 hits scored against them.

The combat between the Warband and Knights was proving brutal. The Knights retained their +1 bonus from the Pursuit against the Warband at the end of last turn, and the Warband still had their -1 modifier from their Retreat. However the Knights now faced a unit of Warband to their flank and rear. Worst still, that unit was enraged by Foul Frenzy.

The Knights prevailed however scoring 18 hits to the Warband's 11. The Knights superior armour carried the day meaning they only lost two stands. The Warband on the other hand lost three stands and had 2 outstanding hits. Their loss meant that they fell back yet again under the pressure from the Knights continued assault.

Once again, the Knights pursued and hit home against the Warband. Yet another round of combat would be fought before this bloodbath would end.

As the Knights and Retainers entered a second round of combat, the Shaman's spell Foul Frenzy subsided (as it only lasts for the first round of combat). Retreating again meant that the Warband were still hampered by the -1 penalty Warband troops suffer when things don't go their way. The Knights, pumped from their continued success, retained their +1 bonus for their pursuit. Worse still for the Warband, they now had Knights to their own flank and rear.

Yet again another unit of Warband fell beneath the hooves of Rhudaur's Knights when they suffered 7 hits. With its 2 outstanding hits from the previous combat, the Warband suffered a total of 9 hits that pursuit, sealing their fate. Angmar lost yet another Warband unit.

Flushed with success, the Knights relentlessly pursued their foe, once again sending the combat into next turn. Angmar's turn now came to an end.

The Angmar dead were piling up. Angmar had lost 7 units compared to Rhudaur's 3. If Angmar lost another two units, it would be right on its break point limit. One more unit lost after that would spell the end for Angmar.

Rhudaur now had its turn.

The Command phase opened with the General calling forth his Rangers from their Ambush position. They appeared on Burrow Hill, backing up the Scouts already there. Their appearance crushed any hope the Cargul had of raising Ghostly Legion warriors from the Burrows.

With the Rhudaur defenders on Burrow Hill bolstered by the appearing of the Rangers, any plan of the Cargul to move it's Marauders on to Burrow Hill and engaging the Scouts just got a lot harder.

The General wasn't going to trust just the Scouts and Rangers with the defence of Burrow Hill. He passed orders to the Spearmen to move forward. The orders however got lost somewhere when he failed to pass his command roll by rolling 11. Having 3 points of Might, the General decided that it was time to use two points and adjust his command roll by 2, making it a 9, and passing the command check.

The Spearmen moved forward, Burrow Hill now anchoring their western (left) flank and giving the Cargul even more reason to forget about trying to get to those Burrows. The General then attempted to move the Spearmen again, but second orders, and the fact that the Spearmen were beyond 20cm, meant that his command roll of 9 failed to pass the command check. The Command phase for Rhudaur now came to an end.

The Shooting phase opened with the Rangers eyeing off the Marauders in the valley below. However the Scouts blocked their line of sight, so no shooting took place.

Rhudaur's Combat phase opened with the ongoing fight between the Knights and the Warband. The Knights scored 17 hits to the Warbands pitiful 2 hits. The Warband were quickly wiped out. Another unit down for Angmar.

Wiping out the Warband unit in the first round of combat meant that the Knights could Advance. Eyeing the remaining unit of Warband nearby, the Knights surge forward slamming into the Warband.

The ensuing fight is again bloody. The Knights score 17 hits to the Warband's 4. The Knights however failed to armour save against any of the Warband's hits, and loose a stand. They must have been getting tired!

Finally, the last of the Carn Dum Warband are slaughtered. The Knights cannot advance a second time, as victors only get to Advance once. The Marauders and the Cargul are safe... for now.

With the loss of the last Warband, the Shaman is overrun and forced to flee to the nearest friendly unit within range. Fortunately the Trolls are close enough and the Shaman joins them on Forest Hill.

The battle field now looks devoid of Angmar forces. The Cargul and his Marauders are now stuck between two units of Knights to the north of them, and four units of Spearmen to the south.

The Angmar dead now comprise 8 units of Warband and 1 unit of Marauders. Rhudaur, on the other hand, has lost 2 units of Retainers and 2 units on Knights.

As Turn 4 comes to a close, Angmar is in dire straits and is right on its break point. With no buffer remaining, the loss of one more unit will spell the end.

But the Cargul does have a cunning plan...