Author Topic: High Elves (shooting army) - Rome 2000 Total Warfare Terrain  (Read 425 times)

Kevin

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The plan is to turn this into a real report by Monday night and I'll change the subject line once that's set.  My High Elves vs. Blakely's Romans.

Blakely's new army to learn is the Romans!  We chatted about them for a while, then she played her first game with them.  2000 points, Total Warfare.  Standard rules except that Oathbound got either an auto-pass (pre-roll) or +2 to everyone.  I spotted Blakely the usual 100 points.

We did the usual terrain with vetoes.






Set Up and Strategy

Rome, front row, left to right:  Triariii, Veteran Principes, Extraordinarii, Extraordinarii, Veteran Principes (big gap) Velites
Rome, back row, left to right:  Equites, Triarii, Triarii

A solid Roman army, with heavy hitters and invincible Triarii, plus a cavalry and a skirmisher to round it out.  Blakely was slightly grumpy that she'd lost the dice-off for who was the "attacker" and she had to deal with a lake next to her deployment zone.  She left a skirmisher to slow down my Bowrides, while preparing a nasty, short line on the short battlefield.


High Elves, left to right:  Rangers, High Elf Battlemages behind a High Elf Battlesquad (HEBS), HEBS, Elder Blade Battlesquad (EBBS), EBBS, Scorpions, Bowriders

The low walls and lake made this extremely good defensive terrain that could be held with a few battlesquads--at least until everyone had made it over the low walls.  I took a Scorpions to dish out the pain, and, in an ambitious move, Bowriders (a unit I normally detest) to attempt to circle the lake and hit the Roman rear.  Worth noting that I deployed shooters last to keep her guessing.


 


Running Down the Pests

On the left, Rangers move to the side, forcing Blakely to send some units their way and away from the rest of the army.  I'm looking for a chance to pounce on one unit, but she's keeping everyone together well.

In the center, my 4 Battlesquads form a concave arc.  Scorpions are shooting at the Veteran Principes, with rather underwhelming results.  At least she didn't draw any Troop Rotation cards or the damage would be entire gone.

Battlemages cross to the right side, I really love how you can not worry at all about setting up a good shot and just draw cards.  :)

On the right, bowfire disrupts the Velites wh advanced slightly then retreated slightly.  Blakely  was going to move them to the side, making my cavalry have to either deal with them or get hit in the rear, but decided it wasn't worth 2 CAs.  As we discussed later, this was a mistake--she should've sucked it up and paid the toll..  A decent charge from my faster cavalry and the already-wounded Velites have just disintegrated.




Retreats, Advances and Neither

On the left, my units mostly wait around while the Romand slog their way over the low walls.   Rangers initially advanced, ,but are falling back.

Blakely had to hold back the Extraordinarii for a couple of turns, waiting for the rest of her army to catch up and prevent pinches.  A nice consolation prize is her units all get 2 pila throws.

Veteran Principes engage my EBBS, but are in the yellow when they do so so my EBBS are favored, especially considering  some helps from the Battlemages and lots of card love.   In fact, twice I fully expect to maul or kill the Veteran Principes and my dice go cold, but the Battlemages fire a nice volley  I play Oathbound to pass the rout check.

Scorpions can't shoot at the engaged Veteran Principes anymore, but get a vicious enfilade at the Extraordinarii.  (OK there are no game rules for enfilade, but my dice go hot and the Extraordinarii are down to 1 green box.)




Replacement and Counter-Attacks

Left to right:

Rangers are Direct-Controlled to be over to the side, chargeable by the Equites but just out of range from the Triarii.

HEBS is pulled back to be just outside of final rush range.  Time to eat another pair or pila throws.   :-\

Extraordinarii on the right, their flank protected, engage my EBBS but Blakely's dice go cold and my unit i still in the green after a pair of pila volleys and a charge!   :D  Sensing an opportunity, HEBS are ordered in for a twos-company.  The Extraordinarii takes a good mauling, but at least they don't run.

Nervously eyeing the incoming Bowriders, Blakely does a Replacement, engaging the heavily-wounded Veteran Principes on the right with fresh Triarii.  This allowed her a "speed bump" to at least slow down the Bowriders versus with no replacement the Veteran Principes die on the next turn and someone would get goosed.




Three Down!

Left to right:

Equites charge into my Rangers.  I'm hoping to one-shot them, then flank the Triarii.  Blakely is hoping they survive 3 turns so my Rangers will get pinched by those same Triarii.  The gods compromise, and the Equites are wiped out on the second turn of battle, so the Triarii will be able to flank, but not pinch, my Rangers.

Veteran Principes pound my poor HEBS with pila.  My Battlesquads are all like "Ouch!!!  Where's a bonus vs. ranged attacks when you need one?  All the other units with fewer soldiers get one.  :-\ "

The second Extraordinarii joined the twos-company, but then the first one (on the right) routed when it went into the red and was wiped out.  This allowed for a pinch on the second Extraordinarii, though due to cards sliding it required a sprint by the EBBS.

The heavily-wounded Veteran Principes throw their third pile volley of the game, hurting my Bowriders, who proceed to run them over.

My EBBS, with a bit of luck, is slowly winning the grind vs. the Triarii.

The Scorpions crew plays go fish and smokes some weed.





White Flag

A few turns later.  Left to right:

Triarii flank my Rangers.  They're doing slightly better than tit-for-tat, so they'll likely win but be very damaged.

My HEBS routed from the Veteran Principes, who whiffed the free attack (Yeah, really.), but they have nowhere to run and have to rally and get reengaged.

The pinched Extraordinarii slew the HEBS on its front, but the EBBS stuck like glue to its flank and eventually defeated it--I think a rout happened when it went into the red.  Cold dice by Blakely left the EBBS in the green.

Seeing the danger of my Bowriders, Blakely finally had the Triarii who was behind the left part of her army move to the right.  We measured it out, and my about one millimeter if my Bowriders goosed someone they'd get hit in the rear, so I had to hold them back and shoot arrows while the Triarii moved further toward the Bowriders.   :-\  Then the Extraordinarii went down and now a sprint by the EBBS would allow for a front-rear pinch on those Triarii!  (You can see the gap where the Triarii were.)

The EBBS-Triarii slap right on the right finally ends with the EBBS victorious.  Can't recall if the Triarii blew a rout check or if the EBBS just got in a really good hit.

The Scorpions crew continues to smoke weed, though at some point they repositioned the unit to get every Roman in its front arc.  Worth noting they're just outside 3.5" from the nearest opponent.

Blakely conceded here.  She'd definitely wipe out my HEBS and, barring freakish dice, would get my Rangers, but I'd still have 5 units, to her two and her survivors would be shredded by ranged fire before they could engage.


Victory to the High Elves!

(And, I'd add, victory to a stand-and-shoot army which was oner 100 points cheaper than its opponent.)

Blakely had a good army and didn't make any huge tactical blunders, nor were the dice particularly crazy (Both of us had dice go pretty cold at key moments.)  So what happened?

- Blakely said afterward that she should have vetoed this map.  With no good fast-movers, flyers, etc, her army would get slowed down a lot, making shooters more effective.

-The general deployment worked to my favor, with her guessing until the end. Notice also how I initially put the Battlemages on the left, to encourage her to put more forces on that side. She ended up with a fragile Veteran Principes holding the flank vs. my Scorpions while her 3/2 units were untargeted.

- Blakely had the right impulse to get her pesky Velites out of the path of my cavalry, but close enough to remain a threat.  As noted above, she should've sucked it up and paid the 2 CAs to make it happen (or, better still, given them different initial orders.)

- Perhaps the largest error was not sending the middle Triarii over to the right sooner.  She clearly had more than adequate forces to crush my left flank.  Had those Triarii gone to the right sooner, then when the first Extraordinarii went down those Triarii would've taken their place, then my EBBS would've been pinched by Extraordinarii #2 rather than vice-versa. 

Not sure if fixing any one of these gives the Roman's victory, but it definitely keeps it a whole lot closer.

Good game, Blakely!  A fun game overall and you definitely made me work for it.   :) 

Heroes of the game:

Rome:  Hmm.   No real superstars, but I'll give it to the Veteran Principes on the left who were kicking the tar out of my Battlesquad and were all but pristine when they noticed that the rest of the army had disintegrated.

High Elves:  Giving it to the EBBS on the left.  Killed an Extraordinarii (helped by Scorpions and a HEBS), then sprinted-and-pinched-away another Extraordinarii and a Triarii--and ended the game still in the green!
« Last Edit: May 10, 2018, 03:28:38 PM by Kevin »
However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results. - Winston Churchill

Hannibal

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Re: High Elves (shooting army) - Rome 2000 Total Warfare Terrain
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2018, 11:25:30 AM »
On the right, bowfire disrupts the Velites wh advanced slightly then retreated slightly.  Blakely  was going to move them to the side, making my cavalry have to either deal with them or get hit in the rear, but decided it wasn't worth 2 CAs.  As we discussed later, this was a mistake--she should've sucked it up and paid the toll.. 

Don't know if this changes the discussion, but skirmishers don't disrupt.  They would have routed from the shooting and then rallied the next turn (if they weren't in charge range, which is probably likely).  Since they rally like normal there, they wouldn't be able to move that turn.

Kevin

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Re: High Elves (shooting army) - Rome 2000 Total Warfare Terrain
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2018, 12:30:48 PM »
Huh.  Good to know.  That must be one of the newer rules.  Pretty sure that doesn't change anything.  They routed from pretty far away, so then they rally, my Bowriders get closer but probably doesn't rout them again, then Blakely gets the same choice of move them away or leave them in my Bowriders' path.
However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results. - Winston Churchill

Hannibal

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Re: High Elves (shooting army) - Rome 2000 Total Warfare Terrain
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2018, 04:35:30 PM »
I believe it was put into place when the Disrupted rules were created, specifically so that shooting could clear out Skirmishers if they were forced to check.  It's been official since AvP & Wuxing were released, and I believe in place well before that.

But, as you say, wouldn't have changed much.

RushAss

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Re: High Elves (shooting army) - Rome 2000 Total Warfare Terrain
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2018, 01:27:35 PM »
Great report!

First of all, I absolutely abhor this map.  Second of all, Rome is in a tough position from the get-go because the High Elves have the option of going shooty and really messing up the legionaries on the way in while Rome can only close and hose.  I'm armchair quarterbacking here, but I wonder if she would have done better downgrading the Extraordinarii to Vet Principes and plopping some Skirmishers front and center to counter that possibility.  This was also an example of devastating Bowrider usage.  The only thing she could have done to counter it was have the Equites zip behind her line to meet them but that would have only slowed them down.  Tough situation for her here, especially when facing this High Elven commander.   
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gornhorror

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Re: High Elves (shooting army) - Rome 2000 Total Warfare Terrain
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2018, 03:48:02 PM »
"The Scorpion crew continues to smoke weed"

LOL

Where's this shade, that you got it made?

Kevin

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Re: High Elves (shooting army) - Rome 2000 Total Warfare Terrain
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2018, 09:24:16 PM »
Thanks!

I agree this was an ugly map for the Romans.  There were a few ways to deal with the Bowriders, though, at least if you have a rule to prevent a degenerate endgame.  For example a Triarii parked between the lake and the map edge would go down eventually but stymie the Bowriders for quite a while.  Some cheap cavalry that would force the Bowriders to chase them to a corner or get rear-attacked also would do the trick.

Another skirmisher is an interesting thought, but I don't think it would've helped in this case.  Because of the position of the Scorpions relative to the lake, the Scorpions would get line-of-sight to their preferred infantry target anyway.  At most they'd have blocked a shot from the Battlemages, but more often than not I was using them for the free card anyway.

Plus, if indeed skirmishers just rout away rather than get Disrupted, they're really not worth it IMHO unless the opponent shooters are all accuracy 5.
However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results. - Winston Churchill