The Gor Shaman orders two units of Harpies up to the Summoning Circle to occupy it.
He then orders a second brigade of two Harpy units up to the Standing Stone to gain control over it.
Malagor, the true mastermind behind the Beastmen (don't tell the Beastlord General this!), orders a brigade of Gors and Chaos Spawn forward to close the gap to the Standing Stone and back up the Harpies there.
Malagor (on the right - with the wings - in the photo above) then fails in a second command role and this Gor/Chaos Spawn brigade stalls.
The Minotaur Shaman bellows for a brigade of Gors and Bestigors to back up the Harpies at the Standing Stone. Amazingly the Shaman succeeds in a second order despite distance and second order penalties, but the brigade fails to hear its third bellows to move forward and they halt after their second order.
The WarGor orders the brigade or Centigors and Razorgors forward. The WarGor also succeeds in a second command order and the brigade moves forward again.
The WarGor then attempts to move the Chaos Hounds forward but the stinking mutts ignore his yells and choose to role around in the dirt and bite their fleas instead.
The WarGor hero named 'Jim' (named after the Pendraken mini's ID on the Pendraken website) orders the Shaggoth forward. Jim manages to communicate with the monster a second time and the thing shambles forward a second time.
Feeling good about himself, Jim decides to give the Chaos Giant a go... and promptly fumbles his orders! Checking the Giant Goes Wild table, Jim rolls a 4. Amazingly the Chaos Giant lumbers forward. The Chaos Hounds scattering to get out of the way and become Confused.
The Beastlord General (resplendent in his Razorgor Chariot) then succeeds twice in moving the Minotaurs forward. With one final brigade of Ungors left to move, the Beastlord General bellows the order to move forward, and they do. Bellowing a second time, they pass a second move test and head forward. With nothing left to loose, the Beastlord bellows a third time. His threats hold true and the Ungors make a third move. A forth order however fails.
The Command Phase over for the Beastmen, Malagor moves forward towards the Standing Stone.
The Beastlord General also moves up.
Jim catches up with the Chaos Giant and gets to within yelling range of the Shaggoth.
The Gor Shaman takes up position hiding in the woods.
The Beastmen now are spread out all across the field, their battle-line looking more like a scatter diagram than a linear feature.
No Beastmen units are within any shooting range of the Undead, and so the Minotaur Shaman decides to cast the Beastmen spell Hunting for Gor, but fails!
The Gor Shaman also attempts casting the same spell, but also fails. Finally Malagor gives this same spell a go and succeeds in moving forward a single unit of Gors to joining a unit of Ungors.
With no combat available, the Beastmen turn is over.
The VC's turn begins with a check to see how the Mortis Engines Reliquary is holding up (see the house rules at the bottom of the Mortis Engine post).
The check results in a double 3...Disaster! Any double means that the Reliquary explodes. Given its the VC's first turn, and the roll was a double 3, a total of 7 shooting attacks occur on all units within 7cm of the Mortis Engine. Ouch!
The Mortis Engine is destroyed in the energies released from its Reliquary. The Terrorgheist suffers a measly 1 hit after armour saves. One unit of Skeletons suffers 4 hits after saves and looses a stand. Another unit of Skeletons suffers 2 hits after saves, and a final unit of Skeletons suffers 1 hit after saves. A unit of Grave Guard looses a stand and a second unit of Grave Guard suffers 2 hits. Finally a unit of Zombies suffers 2 hits. The only saving grace is that no spell casters are within range of the explosion and so remain unaffected. The Red Dukes day is not off to a good start!
One of the Mounted Wight's orders the Dire Wolves forward and then a brigade of Black Knights and Ghostly Riders. A second successful order moves the Black Knights/Ghostly Riders forward again.
The Wight then orders a brigade of Zombies forward, followed by the Dire Wargs. Finally another successful set of commands sees the Crypt Horrors catch up with the rest of the brigades that have headed out. After such success, and the disaster of the loss of the Mortis Engine, this Wight suddenly finds himself on the Red Dukes Christmas Card list! Not much has gone right for the vampire of late, so its nice to finally get some success.
The Lich on the far left flank then orders the Bat Swarms forward to engage the Harpies at the Standing Stone. Eager to get away from the remnants of the ear splitting blast of the Mortis Engine, they willingly oblige. In fact, the Red Duke cant be sure if the Bat Swarms heard the order, or were fleeing the blast and just happened to head in the right direction!
The Lich then orders a brigade of Skeletons forward, then turns its attentions towards the Terrorghiest. The creature must have been rendered temporarily deaf from the blast of the Mortis Engine as its fails to budge.
The other Mounted Wight King then issues orders to move the Grave Guard brigade but fails with a roll of 11 (the Red Duke mentally notes to cut this guy off his Christmas Card list).
Now its the second Lich starts to issue orders. It successfully moves the Skeleton Cavalry forward towards the Summoning Circle. The distance and second order penalties however leave the Lich not wanting to risk failure in another set of orders (and being dropped off the Christmas Card list) and so instead orders a brigade of Skeletons forward to cover the VC right flank. Two successful orders see the Skeletons move up in good order.
Next the Lich orders the Ghostly Legions forward successfully and they move into position behind the Skeletons. The Lich's place on the Red Dukes Christmas Card list is definitely safe for now.
The Command Phase over, the VC commanders move up to take better positions across their battle line.
The Red Duke moves out in front to taunt his foes!
...and to watch the carnage about to happen at the Standing Stone.
The two armies now face each other across the battle field. The VC's looking far more ordered than the Beastmen.
Like the Beastmen , the VC's have no shooting units within range (in fact the VC army list is very light on shooting types!), so its up to the Spellcasters to do their thing.
One of the Mounted Wight Kings gives casting Vanhel's Dance Macabre on the Terrorgheist but fails. The beast must still be stunned by the blast from the Mortis Engine!
The Red Duke try's to Raise Dead on the Harpy/Bat Swarm engagement at the Standing Stone but likewise fails.
Only the one engagement to speak of, the Harpies verses the Bat Swarms at the Standing Stone. The Bats end up scoring 10 hits to the Harpies 7, after saves, and force the Harpies back a few centimetres.
The Bats no doubt were frenzied by the Mortis Engine blast because they pursue the Harpies and give them a mauling, doing another 9 hits to the Harpies 3! The Harpies end up getting wiped out for the loss of a few Bat Swarm stands. More importantly however the Bats take control of the Standing Stone swarming and chittering around the giant stone monolith, much to the Red Dukes delight.
The Combat Phase over, Turn 1 comes to a close with the Beastmen looking shambolic and having lost control of the Standing Stone. Turn 2 will be interesting!
... TURN 2 to follow in a future post!