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9th Age v0.2 Alpha Battle; Ong vs Skaven

Mad 'At

Dumb enough to work
Staff member
True Blood
Apr 2, 2011
Hi guys!

Just had a game where we tried out 9th Age. It is a fan made rule system that builds on 8th edition, trying to make it a more balanced and more enjoyable game.

The lists we had:

Black Orc Warboss @253 pts
Talisman of Preservation, Trickster's Helmet, Ironcurse Icon

Mad 'At (Goblin Warboss)@221 pts
Spear, Shield
Wizarding Hat, Armour of Fortune
Gigantic Spider

Night Goblin Warboss @118 pts
Light Armour
Fire Pike, Enchanted Shield
Great Cave Squig

Night Goblin Shaman @110 pts
Dispel Scroll
Level 2

Orc Big Boss @134 pts
Great Weapon
Armour of Silvered Steel, Opal Amulet
Battle Standard

51 Night Goblins @228 pts
Full Command

40 Orc Big 'Uns @390 pts
Shields, Standard, Musician
Banner of Eternal Flame

20 Night Goblins @120 pts
Short Bows, Musician
2x Fanatics

5 Goblin Wolf Riders @70 pts
Spears, Shields, Musician

30 Squigs, 11 Herders @273 pts

Goblin Wolf Chariot @55 pts
Extra Crew

6 Savage Orc Boar Boyz @157 pts
Spears, Shields, Boss, Musician

Giant @140 pts

Doom Diver @XX pts

Mangler Squigs @XX pts

Rock Lobber @XX pts

Warlord @225 pts
Crystal Ball, Blade of Corruption, Talisman of Endurance, Charmed Shield

Grey Seer @285 pts
Foul Pendant, Sceptre of Stability
Lore of Plague

Chieftain @102 pts
Armour of Silvered Steel
Battle Standard

Engineer @128 pts
Warplock Pistol
Warp Energy Condenser
Level 2

40 Stormvermin @390 pts
Full Command
Banner of Swiftness
Warp Fire Thrower

20 Clanrats @178.5 pts
Full Command
Ratling Gun

40 Slaves @126
Champion, Musician

39 Slaves @123
Champion, Musician

8 Rat Ogres, 4 Packmasters @367

5 Jezzails @100

6 Gutter Runners @108
Sings, Poisoned Attacks

6 Plague Censor Bearers @96

Doomwheel @XXX pts

Warp Lightning Cannon @120 pts

Here are the spells we got:
Mad 'At: Lore of Heavens. Harmonic Convergence, Iceshard Blizzard
Goblin: Vindictive Glare, Night Shroud
Grey Seer: Plague, Dreaded 13th, Vermintide, Blessed with Filth
Engineer, Warplightning, Cracks Call

Here is the field after deployment (excuse the crappy photo, the sun was causing us trouble):

His centre

My right flank

I managed to snatch 1st turn despite having more drops. I cleared all my animosity checks and Mad 'At remained clever. The whole line advanced. Both the Mangler Squigs and the Night Goblin Warboss rolled high for their movement so made it quite far. The Giant stayed a little behind the line of squigs to avoid being electrocuted by the nasty Doomwheel. In my magic phase I opened up furiously with a boosted Vindictive Glare at his Ratling Gun, which was dispelled. I followed with and Iceshard Blizzard on the same target, reducing its accuracy. This was let through and I used my last dice to try and cast a boosted Night Shroud, which would have enveloped a large part of my army in a protective -2 To Hit against shooting. Failed to reach the casting value though, despite the re-roll of a Power Die granted by the Heaven attribute. With shooting I aimed at the Doomwheel with the Rock Lobber, but misfired and it was destroyed. The Doom Diver took aim at his Jezzail, killed 4 and panic the last off the table.

In his turn he passed the frenzy checks of both the Rat Ogres and the Censer Bearers. The Doomwheel rolled ahead, and in the shooting phase it blasted 3 Boar Boyz into oblivion. The on his right flank (not seen, but to the left of the Rat Ogres in the second picture) moved up a bit, allowing the Engineer to reach the Mangler Squigs with his spells. In the magic phase he threw warplightning at them, which I choose to let pass due to a very high roll. I got very lucky and only two of his 4 hits wounded. The rest of his spells I dispelled. In the shooting phase, the Ratling Gun blew up when trying to shoot the squigs. First die rolled a 1, second also rolled a 1. The Warpfire Thrower considered taking a shot at the Mangler, but refrained. The Warp Lightning Cannon took aim at the giant but rolled too short and missed.

Here is what it looked like from my perspective (before shooting and magic):


After this I sadly forgot to take pictures for a while, so just text for now.

In my second turn I continued to advance. The Manglers landed in front of the Rat Ogres. The Squig Horde charged the flank of the Doomwheel. The Boar Boyz and the Squig Warboss charged the Plague Censers, the Wolf Riders failed their forced animosity charge and ended up in the river, no casualties. In combat the Squig caused 5 wounds to the Wheel, 2 of which were saved. The Doomwheel broke but got away. The other combat was one but at the cost of 2 Boar Boyz (leaving only the Boss) and a wound on the Warboss. The Giant moved up close to the Clanrats and Slaves, Mad 'At joined the Big 'Uns who moved up since the Rat Ogres coldn't charge them without serious hurt. Shooting saw me take out the Warp Fire Thrower with the Doom Diver. With magic I got off a Vindictive Glare at the Clanrats, killing 2 or 3. I tried to get re-rolls To Wound of the Mangler using Harmonic Convergence but it was dispelled.

He charged the Slaves into the flank of the squigs. They won in combat and the squigs exploded, taking the Doomwheel, 2 Wolf Riders, some Claves, some Clanrats and 3 wounds off the Giant with them. The Grey Seer and the BSB abandoned the Clanrats, who walked up to the Giant, and joined the Stormvermin instead. The Engineer too left his unit, and slunk past the Wolf Chariot to blast it with a Warplightning that backfired in his face. The Slaves he left stepped on the Mangler but fled due to the casualties. They were later run off the table by the Wolf Chariot. With magic he cast Plague on the Big 'Uns, killing 13. I had pondered to use my Dispel Scroll to increase my changes of removing it, but used my 5 remaining dice instead, and failed by one. The Plague Counter he put on the Night Goblin, who would get hit by the Plague in the next turn. He used his 2 last dice to cast Blessed with Filth on the Stormvermin, putting another counter on the Night Goblins (meaning they would succumb to the Plague on 2+!).

Despite the heavy losses suffered by the Orcs, I charged them headlong into the Ogres. The Night Goblins moved up to block the Stormvermin from moving into the flank of the Orcs. The Giant charged the Clanrats, who cleared Terror. The Night Goblin archers tried to charge the Clanrats too (needing a 9 on the roll) but failed, they were instead forced to release their two fanatics, one of which ended up between the Slaves and the Giant. With magic I cast Iceshard on the Rat Ogres but it got dispelled, I used 4 dice to dispel Plague and failed to cast Harmonic Convergence with the 2 last dice (after agreeing that I could not use the Dispel Scroll in on the Remains in Play). In combat the Giant took no wounds but caused quite few in return. The brave Big 'Uns failed their Fear test (Ld9 with re-roll :slapface: ). With the help of Mad 'At and the BSB the Orcs managed to bring 3 Rat Ogres down, but suffered heavy losses. I won by a little but he held

He charged the Slaves into the Rear of the Giant, straight through the Fanatic who cause 9 hits but only 5 wounds. In that combat the combined might of the two rat units cause a wound on the mighty Giant. He again did little in return. About now his Gutter Runners arrived and poisoned my Doom Diver twice. In his following turn it was charged and killed. Movement saw little else. With magic he tried to cast Plague on the Night Goblins, but I used the Scroll and a few dice and got rid of it. The Warp Lightning Cannon blasted the Squig Boss but only caused 1 wound. In the combat with the Ogres my Big 'Uns failed their Fear test again ( :slapface::slapface: ). The combat was still pretty even though, I lost this time but held firm.

In my turn I charged the Night Goblin into the Stormvermin, the Boar Boy Boss into the Cannon (who flunked his attacks in combat) and the Wolf Chariot into the Rat Ogres. The Night goblin archers chared into the flank of the slaves tormenting the Giant. The Squig Boss caught his breath after the lightning strike and jumped into the other flank. The fanatic turned traitor and jumped through the Giant, causing him a wound. In the combat the rats killed the giant (cause two wounds so the treachery made no matter). The Night Goblins and the Squig Boss killed a lot of Slaves though, who broke and exploded, killing the traitor. With magic I tried to get a boosted Night Shroud through but it was dispelled. The combined might of the Big 'Uns and the Wolf Chariot was too much for the Rat Ogres who broke and fled. The Wolf Chariot didn't capture them but they failed rally in their next turn and ran off. My general challenged his to a dual which was accepted in the other big combat. The lightning fast Warlord missed all his attacks despite the re-rolls To Hit, while the Warboss swung his mighty two-handed choppa and dealt the Skaven 2 wounds, 1 of which was saved. The Stromvermin failed horribly in killing Night Goblins, despite them having entangled themselves in their own net. I lost combat but held firm.

The Clanrats who killed the giant got a reform after doing so and now charged into the Savage Orc harassing the Warplightning Cannon, saving it from certain death. Magic and shooting was uneventful. In combat the Black Orc slew his opponent, but not before he was dealt a wound from his cursed blade (which multiplied into two wounds). The Stormvermin did a little better this turn, despite it was them who were entangled now.

Here is how it looked before combats were fought:

I charged the Wolf Rider and the Squig Boss into the Clanrats, wiping them off the table after two round of combat. My archers reformed to fire at the Gutter Runners sneaking up their rear, felling one of their numbers despite hitting on 8+. I also tried to blast them with a Vindictive Glare but the mushroom was poisonous. I got Harmonic Convergence off on the Night Goblins though, granting them re-rolls. In the combat the stalemate remained. I killed his BSB with my Warboss but little else happened.

In his last turn he gathered up high magic might to try and destroy the Orc unit. After a Warplightning only the Standard Bearer, Mad 'At and the BSB remained. He then cast Blessed with Filth on the Stormvermin, I feared the Plague Counter in combination with Dreaded 13th and dispelled it. He then cast cracks call on them with Overwhelming Power, forcing all three to take a initiative test or suffer D6 wounds. The agile Orcs avoided it with no trouble. Mad 'At must have been distracted by a butterfly or something cause he fell right into the crack. Only two wounds were caused though. That was very, very lucky for me, that spell could have lost me a lot of points. The miscast cause both his wizards a Strength 6 hit (2+PDU) which killed the Engineer having suffered a wound from Warplightning earlier. The main combat was again uneventful but the Gutter Runners managed to assassinate the Shaman in their charge against the Night Goblin Archers (who cause another wound with their stand and shoot reaction, but it was dodged).

Here is the field right before the end:

In the end I won by around 700-800 points.

We both LOVED the new magic. The best part was the new lores, we always had useful spells but non were gamebreaking. The new spell definitions were great too, making it crystal clear what would be cast where and how. While we didn't get to try out the new miscast much, it did make us to use power dice more cautiously.

On the changes to weapons we had different opinions. I loved the 5+ parry, but it might be a tad too powerful. I think it could be something that takes getting used to. Both I and my opponent play very aggressively and in-your-face, with a lot of grinding combats (especially me). In those cases 5+ parry makes a big difference. I've always played a lot with parry units so this is of course more beneficial for me. Using flank charges and stomps can still be used effectively against it, so I don't think it is too big a problem.

We had similar thoughts on the change making all spears count as lances when mounted. The Wolf Chariot, Boar Boyz and the mounted warbosses gained heavily from this. That Orc Champion I had riding around had S7 on the charge! It might be a bit too powerful and feels a bit strange. I like it for the simplicity though, and I think most of the units it boost can really use it (Boar Boyz being one of them, Lizardmen Cold One Riders another).

Overall I both of us liked it.


Vampire Count
True Blood
Jan 16, 2012
Well that's good, and a well detailed report to relate back to us. I haven't looked at the 9th Age rule set too extensively, as I don't plan on playing any form of traditional WHFB anytime soon, so I do wish there was a bit more commentary throughout the report of changing you noticed, or the effects on the battle.

Either way, well done, and I'm sure someone who is a bit hesitant on 9th Age may appreciate this. Although I know you have a lean towards the style of 9th, and other forum goers have expressed a bit of concern over certain aspects of it. Regardless, good to see the game continuing, in whichever way it manages to for any given player.

Mad 'At

Dumb enough to work
Staff member
True Blood
Apr 2, 2011
@Tawg: Thanks for the comment.

The main change is the magic. The new lores meant we both had more viable options in the magic phase. Aided dispel also let me feel less overpowered by his level 4 (although due to the winds of magic swinging my way this wouldn't have been much of an issue). And of course the new miscast table meant we were more reluctant to use a high number of dice, while rolling double 6 with few dice didn't make us fear every time a spell was cast.

All in all it doesn't change the gameplay that much, at least not in these friendly types of games. Both me and my opponent seldom use the worst filth in the book. For those who do the gameplay would probably change more as the worst filth is tuned down. For us it mostly meant we could use units and items that seldom saw the table before. I didn't use my Giant very often in 8th, and while it didn't do great it, it wasn't a complete waste of points. He seldom used Grey Seers because they made our games so stupidly stale before. Now it is not so bad.