Tuesday, 18 October 2016

My Experience at Castle Assault 2016

Castle Assault 2016 was held over the weekend of  15th and 16th of October at the Legions Club in Newcastle. Is always considered one of the premier events in New South Wales and a must attend event.

My list

Kingdoms’of Men
2 x Regiment of Footguard
1 x Horde of Beserkers, Chant of Hate
1 x Horde of Aquebusiers, Brew of Keeneyeness
2 x troops of mounted scouts
2 x Regiment of Knights, Pathfinder & Brew of Strength
2 x Siege Artillery
Wizard, Bane Chant, Lightning Bolt (3) & Inspiring
Wizard, Bane Chant, Lightning Bolt (3)
General on Winged Beast, Blade of the Beast Slayer

13 Drops and a bit of everything, I thought it was a reasonably balanced list. I had only played a few games with it and as KoM are considered a lower tier army I wasn’t expecting much for the success over the weekend – but it’s CA and that don’t matter much.

Game 1 : Pillage 19-1
I played Sam who was also using KoM. This was Sam’s first tournament and he had only played a few games of KoM.
Sam List (From memory so may be slightly incorrect)
2 x Regiments of shieldwall
2 x Regiments of Footguard, with shields
1 x Regiment of Footguard
1 x Regiment of Heavy Pike
1 x Regiment of Spears
2 x Regiments of Pole-arms
1 x troop of Arquebusiers
1 x Regiment of Arquebusiers
1 x Regiment of Knights
1 x Troop of mounted scouts
1 x cannon
2 x siege artillery
1 x general on foot
2 x Army Standard on Foot

So 18 drops and a lot of foot troops.

We had 5 markers on the table

Map was

I had to top and Sam the bottom. With so many units he deployed across the length of the board – placing his war machines behind the difficult terrain. Riflemen and scout troop on his right near the building, Knights on his left and all the troop units spread in between. I deployed Knights on my right flank, rifleman to the right of the hill and foot guard in front of berserkers in the middle of the board. Scouts on either side to be used as delaying units and war machines near pond to give me a firing arch against a lot of his foot troops. General was behind hill and wizards behind foot troops.

I rolled a 1 to pick sides, a 1 to go first and thought my god the dice are going to fail me again. However I think this game came down to me having a bit more experience than Sam and was I able to delay his troops, get my general behind his lines to attack his war machines and then late game hit him with berserkers and knights repeatedly. In first three turns his war machine hit 7 out of 9 times and I was getting a bit concerned but Sam didn’t concentrate the firepower and wasn’t able to remove many units. My war machines didn’t hit that much (a recurring theme all weekend) and in 2 of the times they did they rolled a 1 for number of hits.

He also deployed both riflemen units on his far right so they rarely had anything to shoot at. He moved his Heavy Pike block up behind the hill T1 and within 3” of a marker and I was worried as to how I was going to get to them. But in a brain snap, which Sam realised as soon as his turn 2 was over he moved them onto of the hill to capture the marker – one round of shooting and they were gone. Regiment of riflemen had been wavered T1 and didn’t get to shoot at anything for the game and troop had nothing to shoot at all game. So to capture the markers he had to walk up through the horde’s hail of bullets and a unit was getting deleted each turn. On my right I was able to take out his knights with a charge after he realised he had to take the game to me and moved them too close. The knights were then able to turn and proceed up his infantry line one flank at a time. Last turn a combination of shooting and melee removed his last 6 units to leave him with a war machine, general and I think a BSB. I had not lost all that much and had 4 of the 5 markers controlled.

Good start to the tournament for me. But more a case of a slightly more experienced player being able to control the game. Sam’s list probably needed some wizard support and maybe a flying threat. But Sam was a great opponent (as was everyone who attended) and took the defeat in great spirit.

Game 2: Push 14-6

Next up I played Will with Goblins. His list was something like this:

4 x Regiments of Rabble (or sharpsticks – annoying little goblin dudes)
3 x Regiments of Mawbeast
2 x Hordes of Trolls
2 x war tombones
4 x Flaggits
2 x Giants
2 x Slashers

Map was:

I deployed on north side and Will deployed on the south side.

My deployment: My right to Left: Mounted Scouts, General near building, Arqebusiers near building, Foot guard in front on Beserkers, war machines with firing lines, mounted scouts, 2 units of Knights.

Will’s deployment: Left to Right, Mawbeasts, Giant, Trombone, Giant, Trombone, 3 units of Rabble, Mawbeasts, Slashers, Mawbeasts, Rabble – Flaggits were within inspiring range of all units

So my Knights were opposite his giants, slashers were opposite my general and mounted scouts. The Arquebusiers were only really going to be threatened by the slashers and Mawbeasts.

We ended up with 3 markers each. Mine went in left side scouts, Pathfinder knights and Beserkers. Wills I think went in a unit of Trolls and 2 units of rabble. I didn’t like my chances – 2 hordes of trolls and 2 giants and lots of other units to deal with.

I went first and moved Arquebusiers so they could shoot T2 - I think I managed a lucky shoot on a unit of Mawbeasts with a siege machine and wavered them. I positioned my General to threaten the Slashers. Will moved forward on mass in the middle and his left but was a bit indecisive on the right with his Slashers – he said he was really worried about my General. I think this was one area where Will made a mistake. So my T2 I was looking at having 2 giants in my face and 2 hordes of Trolls moving in quick. So I blocked the trolls with my scouts and 2 knight units went into a giant – thinking 2 would take it out and then I could deal with the other one and the Mawbeast pack positioned on my extreme right flank. My General moved up to box in his Slashers on the right flank. My shooting deleted the middle Mawbeast pack and a slasher – putting a dint in Will’s right flank so good for me. The giant was taken out and the knights turned to face the other Giant and Mawbeast pack. At this point Will was quite worried – I on the other hand was crapping bricks.

Basically from here on in Will was worried about my General on his right flank and proceeded to dance around with his Slasher and Mawbeasts which I think helped me tremendously. The trolls took out the scouts and I feed them the Foot guard units one by one to hold them up. The Giant, Trombones and Mawbeasts eventually got the Knights but not before I was able to fly my General into the flank of the Giant hold it up. Shooting took out the Mawbeast packs on my left and because Will was threatened by my General the 2nd Slasher eventually did nothing all game. Shooting took out some of the Rabble and I was able to get my Beserkers into a unit of Rabble and then trolls (Beserkers with 30 attacks and no bane chant did 20 wounds to the trolls – ouch!!!). Trombones took out my general after the Knights got wavered and failed their headstrong test allowing Will to countercharge the general and do some wounds. Mawbeast pack and Giant eventually took out the Knights and Trombone took out the General.

So my last turn the Beserkers with a few wounds had 4 tokens and were facing a unit of Trolls with minimal wounds and a Giant – not looking good for me. During Will’s turn it finally dawned on him that he was in a good position and confirmed my thinking I was in trouble. But at the last minute I had a light globe moment and inspiration hit me – this doesn’t happen much in KoW for me.

The Beserkers dropped all their markers and moved up to block any potential charges against the Arquebusiers – Arquebusiers picked up all markers and I had 5 of the 7 markers - after consulting rulebook and better informed Queenslanders it was agreed that my move was legit and I had escaped.  We were well over time (we even missed the lunchtime snitzel ) and I won the game on the scenario but Will had killed more of my units so it ended up 14-6 to me.

This was really an enjoyable game – very tactical as I tried to hold Will’s advancing units and work out a way to get a win – Will was an awesome opponent and even though it took him 5 turns to realise he was in a winning position and then have it sneaked away from him in T6 he took it like a champion. He even said it was his favourite game due to the last turn shenanigans.

I think this game was more in favour of Will but he was too hesitant with his Slashers and too worried about my General. This enabled me to control my left flank and the middle of the board. If he had been able to take out the Arquebusiers, which I felt he could have done, I would have lost.

So after 2 games I was numero uno and in noise bleed territory – not something that happens often but then I had to face the might of the Queenslanders )

Game 3 : Invade 4-16

Next up was Ken’s much talked about Varangur list

4 x Mtd Sons Regts, all with Fury & Headstrong,

2 x Kings on Chimeras, both with Fury & Headstrong,
Enscolled armour,
Pipes of terror

1 x Mtd Mage, Famulus, Fireball, LBs, artefact heart seeking 

Map was:

I had north and Ken had south

Deployment: Ken had all the Mounted Sons on his left flank with Mage and both Kings hiding behind the forest on the right.

I deployed Scouts on left and right flank, war machines behind the pond, arqebusierson right side of pond, then beside then in front of the hill I deployed both Knight units, then Foot Guard behind them and then Beserkers behind the Foot Guard. General was in support.

Ken’s Plan was easy to see – bring the Kings around my left flank and bring the Mounted sons down the right flank and hits me from both sides. My plan was not so well formulated. I had not played against Varangur before and never played against a list like this so I had no real idea what to do. My plan was hopefully have the shooting deal with the Kings and have three lines of attack take out the Mounted Sons – each doing some damage so the Berserkers could finish them off.

Ken’s Kings moved up to hide behind the rock on his right so I couldn’t shoot them turn 1. The mounted sons moved up on mass. I blocked 2 units with the mounted scouts and moved the knights up to get ready for charging with the general.

Ken got his Knight units a bit tangled so I was able to attacked them 2 at a time. He sent 1 unit down the flank to move around the building (forgetting to move it 1 turn) so they were sort of out of the game for much of it. I unit of Knights and General went into 1 mounted son unit and wavered it but with Fury it didn’t mean much. Shooting wavered the 2nd unit so it couldn’t charge. So general and knight units took them both out but I lost the 2nd Knight Unit and General in the process. The Third Mounted Sons unit moved up to go through the Footguard but with a hindered charge I was able to hold them off. I got around 8 wounds on 1 king with shooting and lightning bolts and turned the Berserkers to face them. The game came down to the Berserkers making a charge against the wounded King – doing many many wounds (I think it was on around 30 wounds) – I rolled snakes eyes on the nerve test. This left the Beserkers facing a flank charge from the other King and a front charge form the lucky King. I turned my remaining Knight unit to head for Ken’s deployment zone but the mage managed to do enough wounds to kill them. If the first King had died I would have been able to turn the Beserkers to face the 2nd King and not take a flank charge. This meant my shooting and LB mages were focused on the King and not the Mage. I believe I would have been able to take of the Mage which would have allowed the Knight unit to survive and the game would have been a close to a draw because depending on if Ken would have risked the 2nd King against the Berserkers.

Was a tough break with the snaked eyes on the nerve test but I did waver his mounted sons units a few times so I did have some good luck as well.

Game 4: Control 1-19

So next up was Queenslander No.2 – Clint and his Ratkin. Never played against Ratkin before and Clint had unit upon unit upon unit on the table.

His list was:

1 x Tunnel Slave horde
2 x Tunnel Slave Regiments
1 x Blight Horde +1 CS
3 x Shock Troop Hordes
1 x Doom Wheel, Vile sorcery
1 x Rat Mutant Fiend
1 x Enforcer
1 x Weapon team
1 x War Chief, reroll 1 miss
2 x wiz, 1 x fin amulet

This game was a disaster from T1, probably equal to the worst game of KoW I have every played – by that I mean how I played the game. I didn’t read his list properly and had no real plan as to how I should play the game. I think Arquebusiers were shoot off the table by turn 2. I committed one knight unit too early thinking I could take out a unit on his left flank and then have them move up his line supported by the Foot Guard and Beserkers. I got the movement on his monsters confused and thought my 2nd unit of Knights were out of charge range – they weren’t so by T2 or T3 I had my general behind his lines looking back and seeing not much of his army left on the table. I told Clint I would be spending the rest of the game running my general away and hiding because that was all I could save. We both agreed game was well and truly over so we called it and ended up 1-19.

Learning from the game:
  • Read your opponents list more carefully, especially when you have no experience playing against the army.
  •  KoM can fall apart really quickly if you make stupid mistakes.
  • If you don’t have a plan expect a loss because that’s about the only option available to you.
  • Playing experienced players is tough.

 So the tournament that had started so well had quickly turned to disaster.

Game 5

Someone had pulled out of the tournament overnight so we had odd numbers. I told Nick I would take the first bye as I was near the bottom and I was able to organise a game of Malifaux as I had brought my Malifaux crew with me and I didn’t want anyone who had come to sit around and do nothing.

PS: I lost my Malifaux game as well – Malifaux Henchmen can be brutal to play against

Nick had tried to organise a ringer for the last round but despite his efforts he wasn’t able to. He offered to play 2 games in the last round so we could all play. Very generous of him given he was still in contention and a good result would have given him a decent placing.

Game 6: Dominate 19-1

Last game was against Mark and his shootie Elves. I had played Mark at SGC in this same scenario using the same army so I knew what to expect and I knew what I had to do to win the game – get into combat ASAP and negate the shooting.

Marks army was

2 x Hordes of Therennian Sea Guard, Nimble and +1 to hit
2 x Regiments of Stormwind Cav, Pathfinder
1 x troop of Palace Guard
2 x Dragon Breath
2 x Mages, BC and one with inspiring
2 x troops of Silverbreeze cav
2 x mounted Army Standard Bearers

Mark deployed his Seaguard in the middle with the dragon breath in between them and the mages behind in support. A unit of Silverbreeze and a mounted ASB went on his right flank and both units of Stormwind and 2nd unit of Silverbreeze on his left flank with ASB in support.

I deployed Arquebusiers in terrain in the middle of the board, Knights opposite his Stormwind, Foot Guard with Berserkers behind opposite his Seaguard. Scouts on either flank with General on my left flank.

I won roll off for first turn and let Mark go first – for 2 reasons – I would have had to move the Arquebusiers to get them in range and that would have meant they would have been out of cover and not able to shoot T1 anyway and I think having last turn in Dominate is always best.

T1 - Mark moved up his shooters and concentrated fire on the Arquebusiers, even hitting on 6’s they did some wounds – so they weren’t staying around much longer I thought so I better get some value from them. Both units of Stormwind moved up which I thought was odd but they were still out of charge range.

My T1 I decided to take a chance – I moved scouts to block a unit of Stormwind and Silverbreeze and positioned my Knights for a T2 charge but I was leaving 2nd unit of Stormwind in charge position. Foot guard and Berserkers marched straight up to engage ASAP.  Scouts on left flank charged the Silverbreeze and wavered them, General moved up to be ready for a charge when ready. Arquebusiers managed to route one unit of Stormwind and Wizards managed to waver one of the Dragon Breaths. All in all things were looking good.

In the middle Mark continued to shoot at the Arquebusiers and put some serious wounds on them and they were gone in T2. Mark wavered one unit of Footguard T2 with his Dragon Breath but by T3 I was able to get a unit of Footguard into the 1st unit of Seaguard with the General in the flank and I got a lucky waver roll – 10 wounds and rolled an 11. This really hurt Mark badly as I also able to remove one of the Dragon Breaths so his shooting was hampered for his T3. Still in T3 he decided getting rid of the Berserkers was paramount and turned the 2nd unit of Seaguard to face them and managed to route them with shooting. But by the end of my T4 I had the 2nd unit of Footguard into his 2nd unit of Seaguard, 1st unit of Seaguard were gone and 2nd Dragon’s Breath was gone so he had no shooting remaining. General was ready to charge into the 2nd unit of Seaguard and both units of Knights were eyeing rear charges into the remaining Seaguard horde after despatching the Stormwind and Silverbreeze.

T5 Mark was able to block 1 unit of Knights with his ASB and then had to decide which was worse – rear charge by my General or a hindered rear charge by a unit of Knights (Seaguard were sitting in a pond) – he choose to face the General and take the rear charge from the Knights. I think he choose the wrong option because I think he failed to take into account the Knights had Brew of Strength and 2 BC wizards nearby. But either way the Seaguard weren’t going to survive.

After T5 Mark had his 2 Mages left and I had both units of Knights, both units of Footguard, both Wizards, both Siege Machines, my General and a unit of Scouts remaining. Mark conceded and the end result was 19-1 win to me.

I had 2 lucky rolls in this game – routing his unit of Stormwind T1 and wavering the Seaguard T3. Mark didn’t get a lot of luck but having played his army before I knew what I needed to do to win, I had a plan and followed the plan so I was pleased with the end result.


So in 6 games I had 3 big wins, a bye and 2 big losses. Finished on 72 points and managed to sneak into 4th place. I was happy with the result and more than happy with the event overall. We had 16 players attend and everyone played in the right spirit and made the event a good event – I am sure there will be more KoW players for Castle Assault next year.

My Army

Arquebusiers (with +1 to hit) – a solid performance, Piercing 2 is very good against any unit but they were always a target. If opponents didn’t take them out early they did a lot of damage.

Footguard – solid performers – their role was to shepherd the Berserkers into combat and they did that role well. Hard to remove with D5 and high nerve for a foot regiment.

Berserkers – stars of the show in my opinion. Went through just about any unit they charged in one turn. D3 is a bit of an issue but if they got into the opponents units they removed stuff real quick.

Mounted Knights – solid performers, they weren’t stars but they are hard to remove and can do decent damage on the charge and are my ranged threat unit.

Siege Artillery – not convinced on these guys, hitting on 5+ really sucks, But if they hit and roll a decent number of hits (I rolled 1 so many times it wasn’t funny) they do a lot of damage.

Wizards – with BC they are a must, 2nd source of inspiring paid for itself and LB’s were able to chip in when needed so they do their job

General on Winged Beast – good flying threat, an additional attack would be nice but you have to play with what you get. Not so sure about Blade of the Beast Slayer on it though.

Potential changes – getting some healing in the list may give the Arquebusiers a bit more staying power but it would come at the expense of the Lightning Bolts so will have to consider if that is worth it.

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