Vampires vs Dwarfs: Battle report (2500 points)

This is the account of the battle I played yesterday against Chris’s (not the regular Chris, there seems to be a nest of them in Trier) Dwarf army. We rolled up Battleline and played 2.500 points each.

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The Dwarven battleline at the beginning of the game, after vanguard moves. From left to right: 13  Longbeards with 2 Thanes, 25 Clan Warriors, Flame Cannon on the hill, 15 Ironbreakers with Thane Battle Standard Bearer, Anvil of Doom with Runelord, Organ Gun, 16 Crossbowmen, Cannon, Gyrocopter (behind the tower on the far right).  On the whole, he was very light in troops and spent a lot of points on Runic items, especially Runic banners.

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The main Undead battleline after Vanguard moves: From left to right: Dire Wolves screen to the front and then the Hexwraiths.

Second line: Zombies with Necromancer, Crypt Horrors, Grave Guard horde, Ghoul horde. List is here.

 

Turn 1:

The Dwarfs go first. The Gyrocopter flies to the flank to begin harrying my lines in turn 2. Nobody else moves, which might be wrong as I have clearly wrong-footed him and his Longbeards and Warriors are currently facing off against 6 Dire Wolves and a Zombie Horde, so they should have moved towards the centre to reinforce his castle. As such, they are out of the game at the moment. He shoots a bit into my screening unit, killing a couple of Dire Wolves in two units. Most importantly, his Anvil of Doom rolls double 6 when he casts the Rune of Wrath and Ruin and promptly burns 4 Hexwraiths. It couldn’t cast any other spells that round, but unfortunately it had already cast the other two, as I was keeping my dispel dice for Wrath and Ruin. The Organ Gun with Rune of Accuracy then blew the last one apart, wiping that unit out before it could run amok in his rear line.

In my turn, I sent the screening Wolves over to the right to threaten the Gyrocopter. I was aware that they couldn’t catch it, but they could annoy it and keep it from getting too frisky with its Steam Cannon. The second unit of Wolves ran to the centre to lure the Ironbreakers forward. If they failed to bait the Ironbreakers, they could charge the Organ Gun next round and keep it from firing in the worst case or kill it in the best case. The last unit went on to block the Longbeards. The main line advanced. In my Magic phase, I turned 7 dice into 11 with Master of the Dark Arts and the Black Periapt, then replaced my losses and managed an Irrestible Force Danse Macabre that flung my units to the centre line and threatened the Dwarfs. I rolled Backlash on the IF table, but thankfully Vampire spells can heal their casters, what I did the turn after. I also raised ten new Zombies.  I also managed to cast the Rod of Flaming Death on the Warriors to keep them stationary.

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My line after turn 1. Note the Gyrocopter and Wolves alone on the right flank. The Crypt Horrors used Danse Macabre to get inside the house, then got out again the round after.

 

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The same turn, seen from the Dwarf side.

 

Turn 2: Dwarfs

He only declared two charges, the Longbeards on the Dire Wolves and the Ironbreakers on the central Wolves. However, he was 11 inches away with the Longbeards and only managed a 7 plus 3, so he failed the charge and moved 5 inches forward. The Ironbreakers easily got there. The Warriors held to avoid being burned. The Gyrocopter divebombed the Dire Wolves, killing all but one of them. In his Magic phase, he took out some Ghouls and made everyone Immune to Psychology, though he failed to give a unit +1 armour save. In the shooting phase, he missed the house with the Flame Cannon, while his other guns took out some more  Ghouls and Grave Guard. The Ironcurse Icon saved 3 Grave Guard and thus paid for itself 7 times over. Unsurprisingly, the Wolves got killed by the Ironbreakers and they reformed to take the charge of the Grave Guard.

 

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Turn 2: Vampire counts

The Grave Guard charged the Ironbreakers. The Crypt Horrors got out of the building on the right to be able to charge the hill next round. The Ghouls advanced towards the hill to guarantee a charge next round.  The Zombies pushed further to the front, while the Dire Wolves got right in front of the Longbeards to force a charge. The lone wolf on the right ran after the Gyrocopter. In the Magic Phase, I recovered my losses and used the Rod of Flaming Death again on the Warriors. I also got off both Danse Macabre and Hellish Vigour to augment the Grave Guard. In close combat, the Thane lost one wound to the Vampire, then promptly killed him (he has died in every single game so far, despite having a 3+ armour save). The Vampire Count and the Grave Guard unleashed a bucketload of attacks, but only a few Ironbreakers died due to him rolling hot on Parry saves. In return, they failed to do much, but having a Banner, Battle Standard and two runes of battle (+1 combat resolution each), they managed to hold fast.

 

Turn 3: Dwarfs

The Longbeards charge the Dire Wolves, the Warriors hold as they are still hit by the Wand and can’t reasonably charge the Zombies at this stage. The Gyrocopter flies to the side of the Ghouls. He continues to rain death into the Ghouls and reduced them to 16 after his magic and shooting phase. However, being undead, they don’t really care. The Flame Cannon kills 4 Crypt Horrors but luckily the Cannon misfires when it tries to finish them off. The Longbeards wipe out the Wolves and reform. The Grave Guard pummels the Ironbreakers, but they hold. The Thane also passes 4 out of 4 4+ ward saves when the Vampire Lord beats him up.

 

Turn 3: Vampire Counts

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The Ghouls charge the Quarrelers and the Crypt Horrors go after the Flame Cannon that killed 4 of them last round. The Zombies move right between the Longbeards and Warriors to force a charge. The Wolves run after the Gyrocopter again. In the Magic Phase, he counters all my relevant spells, though I manage to raise another 6 Ghouls with the Level 1 in their unit. In close combat, the Crypt Horrors kill two gunners, so stay locked. The Ghouls and Vampire kill a few Quarrelers, but their shieldwall holds. In the central combat, only the Ironbreaker Standard Bearer survives, but he is Stubborn due to their runic banner and thus stays put, saving my main block from the unkind attention of his guns.

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See the tiny banner next to Mannfred’s sword? That’s the last Ironbreaker. Things don’t bode well for him.

 

Turn 4: Dwarfs

The Longbeards and Warriors charge the 54  Zombies on the field at that stage. The Cannon blows the Necromancer out of the house and the Organ Gun shots someone I guess, though I can’t remember who. I guess the Dire Wolves as they seem to have gone at this stage. In combat, the Horrors kill the last gunner, then reform to see the back of the Warrior unit. The Vampire Lord has had it with the Ironbreaker and murders him four times over. The Grave Guard then reforms. The Longbeards and Warriors roll poorly and only kill 12 Zombies, with another 16 dying to combat resolution. But as expected, they hold and now the big units can get revenge.

 

Turn 4: Vampire Counts

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As you can see from the picture above, the Grave Guard and Crypt Horrors hammered into the flank of the Clan Warriors and thanks to a Danse Macabre he couldn’t dispel, they managed to kill most of them, which broke them and the Longbeards that were in the same combat. I had expected a longer combat as he could use the Zombies to gain combat resolution, but there were just too many casualties in the Warrior unit for the Zombies to matter. The Zombies overran the Longbeards and the Grave Guard and Crypt Horrors the last few Warriors.

 

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Meanwhile, the Ghouls finally broke the Quarrelers and pursued into the Organ Gun.

 

Rest of the game:

In the last few turns, the Grave Guard turned around and then Danse Macabred back onto the hill. They then charged the Anvil of Doom and spent the rest of the game trying to kill the Runelord, but he was too tough to be really hurt. The Ghouls finished off the Organ Gun in a round, then overran into the Quarrelers who had just rallied and who got also killed in a single round, letting the Ghouls run off the field to avoid a cannonball-Anvil enfilade. They then returned, survived some grapeshot and killed the Cannon in the last round of the game.

The Zombies managed to charge the Gyrocopter (who was in 12 inches when the Anvil made everyone in 12 immune to psychology and thus could not flee) and then spent the rest of the game running after it, charging it, running after it and so forth. In the end, only the Anvil and the Gyrocopter survived, while I had only lost my Dire Wolf units, a Vampire, the Necromancer and the Hexwraiths.

 

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