The first rays of sunlight pierced the autumn sky and revealed the nearly one hundred tents and makeshift shelters that had occupied Silverhorn Valley of Ostermark for almost three months. In addition to the mercenaries stemming from all over the Empire, the encampment housed desperate fortune seekers, vagabonds, prostitutes, and other misfits. Calling it an army would have been overrated but it was an experienced force made up of adventurers and sell-swords, led by Arch Prefectus Hademar Greiffhart himself – an ill fortuned opportunist who had been outlawed from the Holy Imperial Sigmarite Cult and now wanted for treason and gluttony. With his last savings he had managed to scramble enough men to march against the merchant town of Silverhollow in an attempt scare his political enemies and squeeze the coins off of more fortunate bastards. Only fifteen recruits had deserted during the night and a dozen more had fallen ill, which meant that he could still pull off the siege. Had it not been for the merchants’ cowardly alliance with the Dwarves of Karak-Kadrin he could have taken the town several weeks ago, but Dwarven raiding parties kept harrassing anyone who approached the outskirts of the town bearing arms. Hademar knew he had to take the Dwarves by surprise in order to make a real dent in their defences, so he ordered his captains to make ready for battle and march by midday…
This is a battlereport from a game of Warhammer 8th ed. between two 2500pt armies of Empire and Dwarfs, using our new gaming mats from UrbanMatz. Please note that it was almost a year since we played Warhammer 8th edition regularly, so a couple of mistakes were made during the game but decided to keep on playing for the sake of the narrative. The army lists were:
Empire Mercenary Contingent
Arch Lector on Barded Warhorse: Heavy armor, Greatweapon, Dragonhelm, White cloak of Ulric, Luckstone
Wizard Lord: Lvl4, Light, Dispel Scroll
Captain of the Empire: BSB, Fullplate armor, Enchanted Shield, Dawnstone, Ironcurse Icon, sword of striking
Captain of the Empire on Imperial Pegasus: Fullplate armor, Lance, Charmed shield, Potion of foolhardiness
Warriorpriest: Heavy armor, shield, handweapon
10 Knights of the Inner Circle: FCG, The Steel Standard
13 Crossbowmen: Standard
23 Spearmen: FCG
5 Archers Detachment
5 Archers Detachment
25 Greatswords: FCG, Razor standard
4 Demigryph Knights: Musician
1 Great cannon
1 Hellblaster Volleygun
Lord with Shieldbearers: Great Weapon, Rune of Iron, Rune of Stone, Rune of Wardingx3
Runesmith: Great Weapon, Rune of Spellbreakingx2
Thane: BSB Master Rune of Grugni, Shield
25 Longbeards: Great Weapons, FCG, Rune of Sanctuary, Rune of Stoicism
10 Quarrellers: Great Weapons, Standard Bearer
10 Quarrellers: Great Weapons, Standard Bearer
1 Gyrocopter: Steam Gun
1 Gyrocopter: Steam Gun
18 Hammerers: FCG
20 Ironbreakers: FCG, Rune of Stoicism
1 Flame Cannon: Rune of Forging
1 Organ Gun: Rune of Accuracy, Rune of Forging
Just click on the first thumbnail below and use the arrows to navigate through the slide-show of the battle! Don’t forget the After Action Conclusions in the end of the article, enjoy.
The ragtag Empire mercenary contingent in full force
The high command of the mercenaries, an Arch Lector on horse, a level 4 rogue mage using the Lore of Metal, a Captain BSB and a Warrior Priest
Heavy Imperial cavalry together with a Captain on a baby Griffon (Pegasus) side by side with the fearsome Greatswords!
A regiment of pike (spearmen) and supporting crossbowmen from the Tilean peninsula.
Another exotic unit in the army is the Demigryph Knights
The Dwarf clan of the Iron Cheek in all it’s glory, the grudge roll result gives Hatred towards all enemy characters for the Dwarf characters
The Dwarf army is led by a stout Dwarf Lord on Shieldbearers, a Thane BSB, and a mysterious Runepriest
The army is flanked by artillery and Gyrocopters
Gems of Dwarven ingenuity
As both armies marches onto the battlefield, the mercenary general takes the initiative and begins the first turn of the game!
Regiments of mercenaries march forward and adjust their lines. The Steamtank pumps two points worth of steam into the engine and takes aim towards the dwarven Flamecannon. On the right flank the Captain and his Griffon takes to the skies and position themselves for a charge into the Dwarf cannon.
Fredrik pushes his Hellblaster through the woods and re-deploys it within range of the entire Dwarven line, giving Herman one choice: to let his troops take a volley, or respond with his own artillery in the following turn.
The Winds of Magic are scarce but the metal Wizard still manages to throw Searing Doom which kills off two ironbreakers,, and then finishes the magic phase by conjurung the Glittering Robe to bolster the Greatswords as the Runepriest fails to dispel.
The shooting phase starts off by noticing that some drunkard had taken a piss in the powder keg during last night’s feasting. The result of the misfire will take the crew two turns to fix… Meanwhile, the steamtank places a well aimed shot through the Flamecannon, but the cannon ball is deflected by the BSB’s Master Rune of Grugni, the shot keeps bouncing through the flank of the Ironbreakers killing another two.
Herman responds to the threat of the airborne Captain by charging one of his Gyrocopters into him. This will be a fairly weak combat for both players, and will probably see their flyers locked for the rest of the game.
On the other flank a Gyrocopter manages to sneak past the Demigryph Knight’s charge arc (despite Fredrik pre-measuring this exact move and thinking it wasn’t possible) – maybe the Dwarfs have tailwind today!?
The Dwarf artillery battery takes aim and pummel the Steamtank with a cannon round shot, dealing four wounds to it in an instance!
The Flamecannon lands a barrage between the two infantry regiments, killing off two Spearmen and a Greatsword. The Organ gun also unleash a salvo into the Demigryphs but only manages to put two wounds through their fullplate armor!
After receiving a gush of hot steam the Archer detachment declares a charge into the Gyrocopter, hoping to pin it down in order for the Demigryphs to re-position themselves for a rear charge and remove one of Herman’s important chaff units.
The rest of the Archers push on to take pot shots at the entrenched Dwarves, while the regiment of pike tries to keep up and provide magic support.
Since the Greatswords couldn’t wheel properly to also charge the Gyrocopter, Fredrik marches them up to be within 3″ of their Archer detachment, providing it with both the Stubborn and Hatred special rules of their parent unit. This allows them to keep the Dwarf pilot occupied while the Demis get in position. A great move to mend a disastrous mistake!
After yet another poor magic phase the Hellblaster opens up and mows down an entire rank of Quarellers. Ouch! The Steamtank takes another shot at the Flamecannon but fails to hit it.
In the following close combat phase the Empire Captain somehow manages to beat his opponent in melee, but rolls a rather short (6″) pursuit and fails to hunt it down.
In true Dwarven fashion, the Lord responds by moving forward just shy of an inch, and prepares to unleash yet another devastating salvo of artillery fire which manage to kill a Demigryph and put two more wounds on the Steamtank!
At the start of the third turn the Captain gulps down his Potion of Foolhardiness, granting him an extra attack, and charges in for some easy kills!
Since the Steamtank only has 4 wounds remaining it fails to generate enough steampoints to get out of the way of the Knights, and successfully bogs itself down between the Crossbowmen and the lone tree (which is impassable for this game) – meaning that that the Knights won’t get out to threaten the Dwarven flank as planned, so they have to reform and wait for another opening!
The Demigryphs charge in to finish off the Gyrocopter on the far side of the battlefield, while the Empire’s right flank is slowed down due to precise Dwarven fire!
As the Greatcannon crew fix their gun, nicknamed ‘Boese Gerhilde’, from their previous misfire – they load her up with fresh powder and send the Dwarven artillery crew a clear message: DIE!
After hiddeously failing to kill the crewmen on the charge and in the subsequent turn of combat, the mounted Captain is counter-charged by Quarellers with greatweapons… Fredrik begins to curse the deity of Morr who has clearly tricked him today!
Boiling hot steam from the Gyrocopter who barely escaped the flying Captain kills off another seven Spearmen and triggers a panic chech – which is only passed after the General and the BSB have had their say and threatened to charge down any desserters! Fredrik really needs his magic support to stay in this game!
The cavalry sound their horn to ‘Charge!’ but the Gyrocopter declares to flee. Yet another miscalculation thanks to that damn tree in the middle prevents the cavalry to wheel around, thus resulting in them being pinned down for a whole more turn as the Spearmen back off to open up a gap…
In an attempt to clear the way for the Demis, the paochers are sent in for more ‘knyfes work’!
Meanwhile the Hellblaster keeps peppering the Dwarven lines through the gaps of the friendly units!
Captain Fail finally manages to kill the last crewman but breaks off from combat with the Quarellers. What a feint hearted bastard!
During Herman’s turn the Longbeards charge in and make short work of the poor Archers… Fredrik smiles as the dead cost nothing and all is according to plan – the eager Dwarves have now set themselves up for a date with the underpaid angry Greatswords – Blood for money, money for blood!
Fredrik declares a charge on the last Quarellers…
…and plans to overrun into the fresh unit of Longbeards!
Meanwhile the rogue Wizard shows Herman why the Collegia Metallica has such a bad reputation!
Mumbling mysterious words of forbidden magic, the mage successfully casts Final Transmutation on the Longbeards – turning twelve of them, including the champion, to gold! Thats what you get for being a greedy Dwarf!
The Quarellers gets cut down and the mercenaries hurl themselves into the next obstacle!
Unfortunately the Captain on his Griffon would have been the cherry on top of this battle plan if he could stick around to re-direct the coming flank charge by the Ironbreakers – but he’s off to other business…
The Dwarves of the Iron Cheek Clan declares a charge into the flank of the Greatswords in order to settle this battle!
Meanwhile the Quarellers are hungry for more and successfully charge the Captain one last time!
Even the Hammerers wan’t to join in for the feast and declares a charge into the pinned down Knights…
Even though it was a bit long, the Dwarves pull out their longest leaps and successfully makes the charge! Ouch, it will take a long time to clean up the fullplates after this!
In the upcoming melee both regiments pound eachother with greatweapons, while the Dwarf lord makes short work of the foolish Warrior Priest in a duel…
After murdering the cavalry the Hammerers overrun and dig themselves into the flank of the Spearmen! Somehow the Steamtank manages to generate enough steampoints in the last game turn to ram itself into the backs of the ironclad Dwarves, killing off seven with it’s deadly impact hits!
After failing to make a combat reform with their re-rollable Ld 8, the Greatswords ends up in a bad grind with the Ironbreakers.
Despite the Steel behemoth coming to their aid the Pikemen live up to their reputation of loving life more than gold, and breaks off from the battlefield.
Leaving their veteran Captain defending his Battle Standard and holding the Ironbreakers in place. As the final turn comes to an end the Imperial artillery crews abbandon their guns and scatter as well. The Dwarves pull off a victory with more than a 450pts lead! Well fought!
After a good two-and-a-half hour game we rounded up our victory points, with the Dwarves coming out on top, and shared our thoughts on the game. It was nice to finally get back into Warhammer Fantasy which has been dormant in our local area for quite a while but on the rise again thanks to some new players getting active and older ones dusting off their armies. Here are some after action thoughts from both of us.
Fredrik (The Empire): Yikes! This was a great game despite the swing in the last turns! I’ve beaten this army several times before and might have gone in to this game a bit overconfident. Some major set backs for me was the captain who failed to kill 3 naked dwarves and their cannon despite having 4 attacks at strentgh 6+2 attacks at strength 4, and a stomp – followed up by 5 attacks at strength 4, and a stomp in the next turn – before getting counter-charged in the flank by those pesky Quarellers. I lost a good late game re-director because of that which made the flank charge into the Greatswords inevitable. Also, the Knights failing to threaten the softer Dwarven flank thanks to the Steamtank getting bogged down in front of them was also a big turning point that took away pressure from the Dwarves, maybe I should have just sat back and let him come to me once I had the upper hand (in points) for taking out his artillery? But nobody remembers a coward, especially if you’re looking to sell your fighting skills to others in the future! The mercenaries will have to regroup and come back for another round once we find a wealthy prick who can pay for our services.
Herman (Dwarfs): From my point of view the game against the Empire went up and down. It felt like that during the two, three first turns not much happened. Although, now in hindsight I can see that the six wounds my cannon inflicted on the Steam Tank made sure that it got stranded and in the way for that nasty unit of knights. The flame cannon inflicting about 13 wounds on the Greatswords over a couple of turns made them a little bit weaker, but it couldn´t make them flee. Other than the Cannon and the Flame cannon the shooting didn´t do much, and after turn 3 both were dead anyways. The organ gun shot about 30 shots the first three turns and only inflicted about 4 wounds on the Demigryphs. I must say that my charge rolls were very lucky. All the charges I rolled for succeeded. The first one with my Gyrocopter charging the Captain on Pegasus made sure that my cannon could shoot one turn more. The one that was very lucky and made sure that the victory went to the dwarfs was when my Hammerers succeeded with a 11” charge into the flank of the nasty knights. It was hammer time!