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Vampires vs. Warriors of Chaos

Joined
Oct 24, 2008
Messages
146
#1
Tonight I faced off the local Chaos Mortals player in a 2000 point meeting engagement. Vampire forces consisted of:

Lord (MoTBA, Dark Acolyte, Lord of the Dead, Skull Staff, Helm of Command)
3 Vampires (Dark Acolyte, Lord of the Dead, Book of Arkhan)
Corpse Cart with Lodestone
5 Blood Knights with the Banner of I Hate You Forever
Two units of 3 Fell Bats each
Two units of 1 Doom Wolf and 6 Dire Wolves each
Three units of 12 Skeletons with spears, musician and standard bearer

Chaos forces consisted of:
Fighting Lord
Sorceror
Fighting Hero
25-30 Marauders
Two units of 20 Chaos Warriors each plus command
Five Chaos Knights

I deployed my infantry only 4 inches in from the table edge in the center with the knights and wolves on the right flank with the bats on the left. Vampires were behind the infantry in support. Chaos setup with marauders in the center with warriors on each flank with the knights facing my left. Chaos went first. I will only describe my magic phase since all Chaos magic throughout the game failed.

1st turn saw no real action. I raised 60+ skeletons to bring my infantry units to 4 ranks of 7 wide each. My right flank advanced to bring me within charge range on turn 2. Chaos magic was totally negated by my dispel dice.

2nd turn: Blood knights charged the unit of chaos warriors on the right flank, along with 1 unit of wolves. It turned out I would have been better off without the wolves since they only added CR to Chaos. I killed 7 warriors but the wolves died so it was a tie. I would have been better off without my doggies as they would have broken and I would have easily routed them. CHaos knights charged one unit of skeletons. Over 1/2 of the unit was destoyed with no chaos losses. Magic phase saw that units losses replaced and a successful Curse of Years on one Warrior unit.

3rd turn: Blood knights killed in combat resolution. I knew at this point I lost the game since they were my only heavy hitting unit. Marauders charged my skeletons. Combat resolution went to the vampires however Chaos rolled snake eyes, so they did not retreat! :'(
Chaos knights again did heavy damage to the skeletons they were fighting. Magic again used to replenish forces.

Turn 4: Marauders finally broke and ran and were run down and destroyed. However my skeletons were hit in the flank by the warriors on my right since they had destroyed the Blood Knights earlier. The last unit of Chaos Warriors charged my only unengaged unit of skeletons. Chaos knights destroyed my unit of skeletons on the left flank. Most of my magic went into replenishing my forces.

Turn 5: Created a unit of zombies in front of Chaos KNights to slow them down and replenished what I could. However, all skeleton units were now at 1/2 strength, with one unit engaged in its flank.

Turn 6: Knights destroyed the zombies and overran the corpse cart. My center skeleton unit destroyed through combat resolution.

Total result: 1100 points lost. Chaos losses: 400-500 pts

I think my strategy was sound. Had my knights prevailed they would have then been able to roll up the Marauders and then with 2 units of skeletons they would have been able to flank and destroy the other unit of Chaos Warriors and the Chaos KNights. Although I had numerical superiority during most of the game my dice rolls were poor and after turn 2 the game was decided. The new Chaos Warriors are tough since they all have two attacks, an armor save of 2 and they also had a ward save of 6. Chaos Knights also have magical attacks now and two attacks each. The number of attacks they were able to dish out is just insane and wounding them was almost impossible.

Although I dominated the magic phase my only option each turn was to replenish my forces. Even if I had raised zombies to hit them in the rear they would have just added to my overall losses in each battle and caused greater losses from combat resolution. It is apparent that engaging Chaos Warriors with Vampire Core units is an uphill battle at best and even flank and rear attacks would do little if any damage. I think I would have been better off fielding two units of Grave Guard with Ghouls for Core troops. I also think the Blood Knights needed a combat vampire to assist them along with the Drakenhof Banner and the Royal Standard of Strigos. This would have given me the edge I needed. The poison of the Ghouls would have done a lot more damage then my spears as well.

So concludes my first battle against the new Chaos Warriors Army List. A rematch is scheduled for this Sunday. If anyone has suggestions on how to improve please feel free.
 

Munkey

Grave Guard
Joined
Oct 6, 2008
Messages
257
#2
Unlucky - especially with the BloodKnights!

I am amazed that any warriors were left alive to strike back when you are hitting on 3s with rerolls for the Strigoi banner. The you wounding on 2s leaving him with saves of 6s, followed by a 6 ward save for Tzeench? Can you explain how his unit was set up that allowed both of you units to charge? If he is 5 wide & 4 deep, you only need to kill 5 models to deny him all attacks back bar heroes/unit champions? Did your dogs go into the side?

I guess you have learned that you don't always have to commit all troops to a combat - as you may be handing CR to the opponant. I am very wary of flank/rear charges with zombie units for this precise reason!

For the new extra spikey Chaos Knights an old favourite tactic works as efficiently as it alway did and always will do. Simply raise a new unit of zombies directly in their path but angled in such a way that the Knights are HAVE to charge them, exposing their flank. Basically put, place the zombies in a diaginal line 1 inch away so the the Knights cannot get past them. The Knights then HAVE to charge them. If they destroy the 5 or so zombies then so what, they are facing away from your lines and will waste a turn manouvring to face you again... And then you simply do it again. This is even more effective against Khornate Chaos Knights as they HAVE to charge and the HAVE to overrun - overrun on 3 dice = 9-11 inch move - so you kinda know exactly where they are going to end up. You basically sacrifice a small unit of zombies to lead his poverful units away from your army. If he should happen to fluff his attacks and the zombies hold, you can then slam more powerful units into his exposed flanks.

For you next game be sneaky with your Fell Bats. Don't think of using them in combat! Simply place behind the enemy Warriors to slow them to a crawl. If he throws his faster units forward (such as the Knights) you can deal with them at your leisure with the rest of your army. If he turns a unit of warriors to face your bats - laugh at him as you move the bats to a new position, out of his charge arc but still within 8 inches to slow him down. He has wasted a couple of turns movement for nothing!

I simply love facing the kind of army you faced. NO shooting and NO real magic phase. Troops the can be slowed to 4 inches move a turn. Choppy Chaos Knights that can be led on a merry danse by sneaky zombie raising...
 
Joined
Oct 24, 2008
Messages
146
#3
The doggies did bite into his side. Unfortunatley this cost me that combat since they did nothing but give CR to the Warriors. His setup was pretty basic and had I won that combat it would have won me the game. Only his champion was able to strike back at my knights and he did nothing. Next time I will get my knights do the job themselves.

I never thought of that zombie trick. I will have to try that on Sunday. Same with the bats. They did not do much as against high armor saves they simply die. Had I slowed his infantry down I could have used curse of years and wind of undeath a few times and reduced his infantry to smaller sizes. We only played on a 4'x4' table and I think if we had played on a 4'x6' the game would have gone in my favour. This would have allowed me to go around his warriors and charge from the rear. Unfortunately on our table there was terrain blocking a clear path around him necessitating me to charge on turn 2. Anyway, it was an enjoyable game.
 

N.I.B

Master Necromancer
True Blood
Joined
Sep 26, 2007
Messages
2,370
#4
darebear said:
It is apparent that engaging Chaos Warriors with Vampire Core units is an uphill battle at best
That's crazy talk. You were outplayed.
 
Joined
Oct 24, 2008
Messages
146
#5
Well I don't doubt that. I am still learning and the game certainly requires some finess. I had second thoughts of using the Dire Wolves in my first charge and I should have listened to my gut. Clearly one bad choice can, and did, decide this game.

A more accurate statement would be that wounding the new Chaos Warriors with my skeletons last night proved next to impossible. Even with two ranks of 8 spearmen, the Helm of Commandment and the Corpse Cart allowing me to strike first I was at best able to kill one warrior a round. Against a 2+ armor save and a 6+ ward save it proved just too difficult. Even if I manged to engage him in the flank with another unit of skeletons and negate his ranks it probably would have not changed the outcome that much. With each Chaos Warrior having between 2 and 3 attacks (depending on the unit) the casualties just piled up. I think Ghouls would have done better since at least I would have been wounding more often and perhaps getting wounded myself less with their higher toughness.
 
Joined
Sep 2, 2008
Messages
196
#6
darebear said:
A more accurate statement would be that wounding the new Chaos Warriors with my skeletons last night proved next to impossible.
You shouldn't expect to inflict damage with any VC core unit. Ghouls are marginally possible, but not against something as hard as chaos warriors. Against the powerful army books, VC core is just there to get in the way. Killing the enemy is up to characters and rares, possibly helped by wights.
 
Joined
Feb 3, 2008
Messages
26
#7
well, you could also create more "fighty" vampires with great weapons and one with talysman of the Lynci to get the drop on the knights and squash them with a lot of str 7 attacks.
 

N.I.B

Master Necromancer
True Blood
Joined
Sep 26, 2007
Messages
2,370
#8
I missed the 'core' word for some reason, my apologies. Of course you're right that you can't really throw VC core units in the front of a Chaos Warrior unit and expect good things to happen - unless you have a combat character in there. You should compare them to Grave Guards instead, if you really have to make any comparisons.

I've only faced the new Chaos Warrior unit once yet. I hit a unit of 15 Khorne Warriors it in the front with a Varghulf and a flying vampire lord, in the flank with a Lycni BSB, and in the rear with a good sized unit of pursuing Ghouls. After much gore and violence, the remains of the Warriors were chased down.

Had the Ghouls charged in alone I could have lost, since the Warriors killed 7 of them, even when striking last. What I learned from this game was that you defeat WoC in the movement phase.
 
Joined
Oct 24, 2008
Messages
146
#9
Actually I just realized today that I probably should have won the game. During the Blood Knight charge I killed seven chaos warriors while loosing 4 dire wolves. However, the wolves charged on their flank which would have eliminated their rank bonus. I didnt have my book with me and my opponent kept his three points for rank. He said that since I only had one wolf left they did not negate rank bonuses. However this was incorrect and I should have won the combat by three. He would have not auto-broken but it would have been a hard break test for him to make. If he failed that unit would have likely been overrun and destroyed, allowing me to continue my attack into his flank and kill his maruaders and finish off his remaining warriors and knights. At the very least I would have been able to force a draw had my knights lived to kill additional units.

Anyway, it was a learning experience for me.
 

Munkey

Grave Guard
Joined
Oct 6, 2008
Messages
257
#10
Sorry darebear but to deny ranks your unit would have to have unit strength of at least 5 at the END of the combat phase. This is different to the rank bonus, which counts from the start of the combat phase.

You needed to have at least 3 wolves left after combat to deny him his rank bonus.

Slamming weaks units into combat can cost dearly. Only time I tend to do it is against large single things, like dragons, where I am challenging them. get charged by a dragon - challenge with the unit champ - champ dies - In my phase I raise the champ again, then raise a unit of zombies and Danse them into his rear for +2 rear bonus... Works nearly every time!
 
Joined
Oct 24, 2008
Messages
146
#11
Actually on page 38 it says that if the enemy unit is reduced to less then strength 5 the unit regains its rank bonus at the beginning of the "next turn". I equate that to mean that the rank bonus is negated for that combat resolution phase because during the whole phase the unit would be fighting to its flank and thus the warriors would be unable to support the front line. To me this makes sense and makes small charges like this useful.
 

Munkey

Grave Guard
Joined
Oct 6, 2008
Messages
257
#12
Hmmm, that's really quite interesting. You are indeed correct that it states you regain it at the beginning of the following turn - this suggests the impact of the flank charge disrupts the units cohesion from the moment of the impact not at the end.

I am going to open a thread on this in the 'Rules' section because this could be very very useful indeed. Slam a unit of 5 zombies into the flank, the zombies all die but the enemy is still denied their rank bonus for that particular combat resolution.
 

chris_havoc

Vampire Count
True Blood
Joined
Mar 5, 2008
Messages
1,108
#13
Yes but if the zombies all get killed you handed him 5 to CR rather than just 3...

It's a useful thing to know for sure. Another thing with flanking is that if both units have an equal amount of units flanking in one combat then no one gets the flank bonus but if the number of flanking units are uneven the person with the most flanking units gets the plus 1. The flanks still negate ranks though I think.

Chaos warriors are hard! 2+ saves in CC is crazy. Remember though that if you manage to get your Blood Knights in the side they'll negate ranks, cancel rank bonus, have any plusses for banners or BSB and will negate the +1 to armour because of hand weapons and shield because they're hitting in the side. That means no armour save at all!
 
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