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Victory or Death - 2500 pt Swedish Comp Tournament

Nov 13, 2013
Hi all,

Fresh off the heels of another tournament. This one was VICTORY OR DEATH, held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The venue was the Fraternal Order of Eagles hall (similar to a legion), which is our usual clubhouse...so kind of a hard tournament to skip :tongue:. It was run by Dale from the Chumphammer podcast, who is also a member of my club. Tournament pack can be found HERE.

Decision was made to base the pack off the US Masters one, given how badly the Pacific Northwest crew got trounced. This meant it was a 20-0, Swedish Comp tournament, 2500 points, based on an 8-14 point band. Units under 25% also gave up half victory points.


I played around with a few builds in THIS THREAD in the lead up to list submissions. Unfortunately the list I ultimately settled on required finishing my terrorgheist conversion, and given my hobby burnout after my marathon painting sessions for my last tournament I was thouroughly disinclined to do this. Thus I basically just tweaked the list that I took to my last tournament and submitted that. My list was:

General (Vampire Lord): Potion of Strength; Armour of Destiny; Dispel Scroll; Red Fury; Quickblood; Level 2 Wizard (Lore of Vampires); lance; shield; Hellsteed 473
Base (-15), Level 2 (-3), Dispel Scroll (-7), Hellsteed+Red Fury (-6), Quickblood (-5), Red Fury+Quickblood (-20) = -56

Vampire Lord: Talisman of Preservation; The Other Trickster's Shard; Ogre Blade; Red Fury; Quickblood; Level 4 Wizard (Lore of Vampires); shield; heavy armour; Hellsteed544
Base (-15), Level 4 (-21), 2nd Red Fury (-5), 2nd Vampire Lord (-10), 2nd cav char (-3), Ogre Blade (-3), Hellsteed+Red Fury (-6), Quickblood (-5), Red Fury+Quickblood+Magic Weapon (-26) =-94
Wight King: Ironcurse Icon; Nightshroud; Dragonbane Gem; great weapon; Skeletal Steed (barding) 160
Base (-4), mounted (-1), nightshroud (-2), 3rd non-necro cav char (-7) = -14
39 Skeleton Warriors: The Screaming Banner; Skeleton Champion; musician; standard bearer 250 (-4)
38 Skeleton Warriors: Skeleton Champion; musician; standard bearer 220 (-4)
5 Dire Wolves 40 (-2)
5 Dire Wolves 40 (-2)
5 Dire Wolves 40 (-2)
5 Dire Wolves 40 (-4)

10 Black Knights: Banner of Swiftness; barding; lances; Hell Knight; musician; standard bearer 305 (-18)
4 Vargheists: Vargoyle 194 (-10)
4 Vargheists: Vargoyle 194 (-10)

2,500 points / (300-220)/10 = 8.0

At an 8.0 my list was the lowest comp allowed in the tournament, meaning that it was possible for me to start down 600 points against a 14+ rated list. Not really where I wanted to be.

That said, provided that I protect my points well and use the vargheists to clear things out of the way of the bus, I should be fine. Best of all this list required that I paint no additional miniatures. Sounded good to me!


Grey Seer: 240.0 Pts General Magic Level 4
Warlord 190.0 Pts Heavy Armour, Fellblade [100.0]
Warlord 193.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour, Wizarding Hat [100.0]
Assassin 170.0 Pts 2ndWeapon; Throwing Stars, Weeping Blade [30.0], Potion of Strength [20.0]
Chieftain 47.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour
Chieftain 47.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour
Chieftain 47.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour
Chieftain 47.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour
Chieftain 47.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour
Chieftain 47.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour
Chieftain 47.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour
Chieftain 47.0 Pts Halberd; Heavy Armour

48 Clanrats 295.5 pts Light Armour; Shields; Full Command
Ratling Gun weapon team

23 Clanrats 100.0 Pts Light Armour; Standard

48 Clanrats 310.5 Pts Light Armour; Shields; Full Command
Weapon Team Warpfire Thrower;

Warp-lightning Warp Cannon 90.0 Pts
Doomwheel 150.0 Pts
Doomwheel 150.0 Pts
Hellpit Abomination 235.0 Pts

First round pairing is based on comp scores, so I was doomed to face the only other 8.0-rated list in the field. I was hoping that this would be something like a Warriors, Vampires, or Demons list that would have to run at me and I could out-fight in combat. Unfortunately I was staring down the table at this instead.

So let's start with the rare section. First of all that WLC is concerning, because it has the potential to absolutely thrash my bus. Nothing kills black knights quite like small round S6-10.

The hellpit will also shred my vargheists and do a number on skeletons, so my only good counter for him is the vampires. And with regens not affected by the OTS, there's a very decent chance they could bounce off. I also have no flaming, so even if he doesn't stand back up he's liable to explode into rats that will hold my bus up for another round, and potentially set up a countercharge.

The two doomwheels don't scare the bus overmuch, but they will thrash a unit of vargheists in no time flat. Not where I want to be.

Finally....the characters. Ugh, the characters. He can feed me 45-point chieftans all day every day with skitterleap. He can load up his units with them, and mitigate what my vampires can do. Worst of all, after kiling them his fellblade will step up and thrash one of my vampires. The assassin with his potion is also a big threat, and the weaping blade will threaten even vampire lords if it slips just a single wound through. Concerning.

My plan going in is to crutch on magic a bit, and use my chaff to dictate the movement. Wind of Death and Curse of Years can chip his units down in size. Raise Dead can hold those hellpits and doomwheels back. I'll use Gaze to snipe out his weapons teams, and keep them from doing much. Finally I'm not super concerned about most of his spells, but skitterleap really has to go. Death Frenzy is the other scary one, but it's a mixed blessing as it allows me to frenzybait his blocks around.

Verdict: I'm concerned. I think I'm going to have to play it really conservative. I'll avoid whatever unit he loads up with characters and kill the rest. Only once his bus is whittled way down will I risk going in, and only then if I have to.

...back to work for now. Stay tuned for the writeup of the match itself!
Nov 13, 2013
Game 1 Continued:

I started off deployment with my 4 units of dogs deployed in dart formation, each spaced 7" apart from the last. Followed that with skeletons, and one unit of vargheists on my far left flank before he was down.

He deployed (my left to right): doomwheel, big clanrats, small clanrats (WLC behind), Hellpit, big clanrats, doomwheel. He then spread his chieftans across two units, seer in the bunker, and fellblade in the far left unit.

I then deployed my bus on the far right, as far away from that unit as possible and across from his hellpit and other bus.

I rolled up Invoc, Curse, Raise Dead, and Wind of Death on my level 4, and Invoc and Vanhels on my level 2. I won the roll for first turn.

There were also 4 strategy cards that could be used the first four games, and which awarded extra points. We both picked a card that gave us 300 points for ending the game with our most expensive unit into the enemy's deployment zone (his being the fellblade clanrats, mine being my level 4 vampire lord).

Dogs vanguarded up, then pushed forward into his doomwheels to limit their mobility. Vargheists on the right pushed forward with the bus to threaten his bunker, while vargs on the right swung around to help out on the right flank. Magic I believe he dispelled Raise Dead but couldn't get Curse of Years which killed a few clanrats.

His turn he charged his rightmost clanrats to clear the chaff in front of them. His doomwheels moved up and shot at dogs. His hellpit tried to get into my vargheists, needing an 11 and falling an inch short. His doomwheel on the left charged into a unit of dogs and overran, needing an 11 to get into the rear of my vargheist unit (turned around to prevent frenzy tests).

Seer moved out of the bunker into his clanrat unit on the right, with the fellblade. Fellblade took a wound. During magic he cast death frenzy on 3 dice and dimensional cascaded, sucking his seer down a hole. Game looks like it's in the bag.


Bus declared a charge into the flank of his clanrats. Dogs had to charge in as well to clear the way. Vargheists on the right charged into his bunker and he fled.

I then made my biggest mistake of the tournament. With the hellpit 1" in front of the vargheists, I made the decision to throw them in with the bus to try and chew through the clanrats faster.

In combat he of course reveals his assassin in the unit. I declare a challenge with my vargheist champion, and he accepts with the assassin and blends him for combat res. My vargheists allocate attacks and kill a chieftan I believe. Vampires go to town on the unit. Dogs die. He doesn't have a BSB, but makes his steadfast 10 check to stick and turn to face.

His turn he puts the hellpit into the rear of the bus, doomwheel into the flank of the vargheists. He takes a test to restrain the doomwheel from shooting and passes. Assassin pops his potion and challenges.

I realized at this point that things were dire, and figured I would be best off accepting with my BK unit champion. He could only do 6 combat res that way, and hopefully my vampires could make up for that.

Unfortunately they whiff, and only do 9 wounds between the two of them. Wight king whiffs as well. Hellpit rolls the 2d6 attacks and rips apart the black knights. I have 11 wounds remaining in the unit, including characters. He beats me by 13. Pop. 0-20.

Result: 0-20 loss for the VC

AAArrrrrghhhhhhhh. Prime example right here about what happens when you get cocky and make bad decisions.

My bus was in lance formation out of habit, when there really wasn't any reason for it. I should have put them in ranks to break his ranks (and Strength in Numbers) should I hit him in the flank. Utter waste.

What's more, there was no reason for me to put my vargheists into the clanrats. Vampires had that battle on their own, and all I did was feed him combat res. Vargheists could have fail charged where they were and sacrificed themselves to draw the hellpit away for a turn. Other vargheists should also have been back a couple inches to give him a much longer overrun from his dogs.

Just sloppy. Super sloppy. Had I played conservatively I think I had this game 15-5 the moment his seer went down the hole. Instead I risked big and lost it all.

My only consolation is that this is a 6-game tournament. Big loss puts me down in the bottom tables, where I'm hoping to find some lists that won't be able to get out of the way of the bus. Here come the submarine...

Up parascope!
Nov 13, 2013
GAME TWO: High Elves (10.5)

High Elves 10.5
Second Monster -4
Same Lore -2,
Annointed on Frostheart: Giant Blade, Charmed Shield, Dawnstone, Potion of Foolhardiness. 545 pts, -42
Archmage Level 4: Lore of Beasts Dispel Scroll, Talisman of Protection. 255 pts, -35
Mage Level 2: Lore of Beasts Power Stone, Potion of Speed. 145 pts, -12
Noble BSB: Dragon Armor, Great Weapon, Reaver Bow, Potion of Strength. 154 pts, -17
5 x Ellyrian Reavers: Bows and Spears 95 pts,-4
5 x Ellyrian Reavers: Bows and Spears 95 pts,-6
6 x Silver Helms: Champion, Shields 148 pts,-7
6 x Silver Helms: Champion, Shields 148 pts,-7
6 x Silver Helms: Champion, Shields 148 pts,-10
18 x Phoenix Guard: Full Command, Razor Standard. 345 pts,-14
Eagle Claw Bolt Thrower70 pts, -7
Eagle Claw Bolt Thrower70 pts, -9
Great Eagle, Shredding Talons 55 pts, -5
Flamespyre Phoenix. 225 pts, -14

Well then. Remember what I was saying about "lists that can't get out of the way of my bus"? Yeah...this isn't one of them.

Those two flying monsters can dance around my bus all game. My bus really doesn't like fighting pheonix guard, with those damned ward saves. Boltthrowers chew through the bus quick and threaten the characters with D3 wounds, though two is a lot less scary than four. The silverdarts are annoying, but they can threaten the vargs if I'm not careful.

That said...he doesn't actually have much that can really threaten me. The more I look at his list the more I'm thinking this is a worse matchup for him than for me. I don't think he wins this match, but in a 20-0 system and up 230 points from comp I think he can slow me down for long enough to hold me down to an 11-9 or 12-8 tops. My best hope is to just press him really hard and hope he makes some mistakes.

I deploy in the middle, as does he. He puts his flyers off on my right though, and I put vargs on either side to deal with his boltthrowers that are deployed in corners as well. Bus goes across from the fliers.

My Turn One:
I win the roll for first turn, which is actually bad for me. If I push too hard he'll just fly over me, but if I hold back he just backs up. Either way I lose a turn that I need to be scoring points off him. Hmm.

Thus instead I set up a trap. Bus pushes way forward, so that he can't get away from me if he stays still. Dogs push up into his grill to mess up his movement phase. Skeletons on the left push up as far as they can. Dogs move up to very obviously take his phoenix guard out of the fight.

My vargs on the left I swing back around to cover my bus. Vargs on the right I push forward to take care of his boltthrower.

In magic I raise up zombies in front of his phoenix guard. That should hold them for a while.

...to be continued...
Mar 11, 2015
The suspense!

I figured that Skaven list would be rough to deal with from the first sight of it back in your list thread. I'd think that with OTS and a Nightshroud next to him, your Vamp Lord should still be able to shred the Phoenix Guard pretty handily, but I guess we'll see!
Nov 13, 2013


Opponent decides it's time to clear out my chaff and charges in with his cav. All but one of my dog units (which I'd purposely held back, near the bus) get charged by silverdarts. Elsewhere his big gribblies move up outside my line of sight.

In magic he cascades with his level 4, but isn't sucked down a hole. Does cut his phoenix guard down in size though, which is nice.

Shooting chips a few wounds off my vargheists.

His cav cleans up my dogs and overruns.

My Two:

One silverdart overruns after mulching my dogs and lands right in front of my bus. His obvious intention here was to chaff the bus for a turn, but I'm not sure what the point was given that I didn't really have much else to charge.

Furthermore, he overran all of his units to where he can't really safely flee from anything without my being able to catch him.

The dart in front of my bus opens up a golden opportunity though. Both a unit of dogs and a unit of skeletons are within easy charge range. I declare with the dogs first, and then the skeletons (so that if he flees from the skeletons the dogs will catch him). He holds.

Skeletons and dogs then criss-cross, such that the angle of pursuit (should the helms flee...which they should) will carry the dogs into his fire phoenix. Only need to roll a 10 on the pursuit roll to do it.

Bus reforms to face the phoenix, and my opponent groans when sees his mistake.

Elsewhere the vargheists move up to cover the rear of the bus. Idea is that should the dogs fail to catch the pheonix, they can pin down the frostie character long enough to swing the bus around. Other vargs janky-charge a bolt thrower and clear it off, overrunning towards his pheonix guard.

Magic I raise more zombies.

Combat we do no wounds and whiff. He's on LD3 (charge + 3 ranks + banner + flank to his wound and LD8) and breaks. Roll for the dogs...and get exactly 10. Fireheart pinned!

His Three:

In a desperate gamble to save his phoenix he charges in the frostheart with his character on it. Big mistake there, but people underestimate my bus all the time.

Magic doesn't matter. Shooting misses.

In combat I decide to play it safe and just feed him the BK champion. He wins by a couple and I crumble 1 or 2, and reform to give myself a rank and open the path for my skeletons to charge his fireheart.

My Three:
Skeletons go into the fireheart. In combat he rolls a 2 for thunderstomp and the skeletons run him down.

Vargheists charge into the flank of the frostheart for combat res. I accept his challenge with my blender this time, and put all my wounds into the frost heart leaving it at 1 left. He pushes a couple wounds through against the VL but I make my ward saves. He's down by a bunch and flees. I pursue and catch with the vargs, and reform with the bus.


Next few turns see a hail-mary gamble to turn his level 2 beasts into a mountain chimera, but he doesn't IF and I eat it with the scroll and mulch her with a VL. Vargs hit the phoenix guard in both flanks and crush them, running them down. End of the game he's got one bolt thrower left and a unit of reavers, while I've lost just my dogs.

RESULT: 20-0 for the Vampires

Makes up for my first crushing loss against the Skaven. My opponent was quite new to the game, and didn't really know how to deal with my bus. I gave him some advice about what he could have done for next time.
Nov 13, 2013
GAME THREE: Orcs & Goblins (11.9)

Lords (555pts)

Black Orc Warboss 160pts, Talisman of Preservation 45pts, Enchanted Shield 5pts, Ogre Blade 40pts, 250pts, -10

Savage Orc Great Shaman 170pts, Level 4 35pts,Lucky Shrunken Head 50pts, Fencer's Blades 35pts, Obsidian Trinket 15pts 305pts, -37 (-28 lvl 4 shaman + -9 Luck Shrunken Head)

Heroes (234pts)
Goblin Big Boss 35pts, Light Armor 2pts, Shield 2pts, Battle Standard Bearer 25pts, Spider Banner 85pts 149 pts, -10

Night Goblin Shaman 50pts, Level 2 35pts 85pts, -10

Core (699pts)
(28) Savage Orcs 8pts, Big 'Uns 2pts, Additional Hand Weapon 1pt Boss 15pts, Standard Bearer 10pts, Musician 10pts 343pts, -23

(39) Goblin 3pts, 1/2pt Shield, 1/2 pt Short Bow, (3) Nasty Skulkers 30pts Standard Bearer 10pts, Musician 10pts 206pts, -3

(5) Goblin Wolf Riders 10pts, Short Bow 1pt, Shield 1pt, Spear 1pt Musician 10pts 75pts, -3

(5) Goblin Wolf Riders 10pts, Short Bow 1pt, Shield 1pt, Spear 1pt Musician 10pts75pts, -3

Special (460pts)
(8) Trolls 35pts 280pts, -24

Orc Boar Chariot 85pts, Extra Crew 5pts 90pts, -4

Orc Boar Chariot 85pts, Extra Crew 5pts 90pts, -4

Rare (550pts)
Goblin Rock Lobba 85pts, -6, 3 wmpts

Goblin Rock Lobba 85pts, -6, 3 wmpts

Goblin Doom Diver 80pts, -11, 6 wmpts *12 wmpts -4

Mangler Squigs 65pts, -6

Mangler Squigs 65pts, -8

Snotling Pump Wagon 45pts, Spiky Rolla 15pts, Giant Explodin Spores 15pts,Out Rigga 10pts 85pts, -4

Snotling Pump Wagon 45pts, Spiky Rolla 15pts, Giant Explodin Spores 15pts,Out Rigga 10pts 85pts, -5


Isn't a tournament if I don't face Green Dwarfs! There is a rather ridiculous amount of OnG in my meta, come to think of it.

Lots of stuff here that can really threaten the bus. Manglers, doom divers, pump wagons. Will have to be very careful. Luckily he only has the one catapult that can actually threaten the vampires once the bus is shaved down to size, so I'm not as concerned as I might otherwise be.

Plan is to ignore the trolls until I've killed the general. Focus chaff and vargs on clearing out those chariots. Try and get the dogs into the manglers, but keep them generally away from the bus elsewise. Skeletons will try and hunt down chariots that come too close to the bus.

I'm thinking the best points are going to be in that big goblin and savages units. They're too slow to get out of my way, and my bus can chrew through them in short order and be safe from warmachines in the mean time.

Lots of concerning stuff though. A few mistakes is all it would take for this one to go really, really wrong...
Nov 13, 2013
The suspense!

I figured that Skaven list would be rough to deal with from the first sight of it back in your list thread. I'd think that with OTS and a Nightshroud next to him, your Vamp Lord should still be able to shred the Phoenix Guard pretty handily, but I guess we'll see!
Yeah it was definitely concerning. All those chieftans would make it really difficult for my vampires to score much of anything off his units. I really should have known better than to throw my vargheists in there with them though.

I angled them to face his bunker, hoping to use them to slingshot into his cannon. He saw this coming though and just fled them off the board, leaving my vargs with nowhere to go.

Had I angled them better I could have left myself an angle onto anywhere that bunker might go, while giving more leeway to charge the doomwheel wherever it might move. Instead I gave him room to move the doomwheel outside of the vargheist' arc, leading me to the game-losing decision to redirect them into the flank of the clanrats.

It was all around a very sloppy game on my part. I executed my plan to control his movement well, and the moves he made were largely those that mine had dictated. It was my own plan on how to capitalize on those that was fatally flawed.

Great player though. Sadly he had to drop shortly into his 5th game on day 2, otherwise he was well in the running to win the tournament. Even as it was he ranked very highly.
Nov 13, 2013


So based on my opponent's list I knew that his general and level 4 would need to be in with his savages, which would have to be with the trolls. Level 2 and BSB would need to be in with the goblins. When he plunked down his board I saw that the goblins were arrayed wide (to make use of the poisoned bows), so I guessed they would be deployed either behind the savages or with all of his chariots and stuff in front.

Turns out he went with the latter. Left flank saw warmachines in the corner, protected by trolls in front and savages just inside them towards the middle of the board.

Right flank had his goblins with their bows just beside the savages, with fast cav and chariots out front and manglers in behind.

In turn I deployed dogs my dogs arrayed across the middle of the table, each 6" apart, followed by my skeletons roughly in the middle. I figured that he could send his manglers through any of those blocks and smash my bus, and that it was more dangerous if this happened while I was fighting the savages and trolls.

Thus I deployed the bus on my right, across from all of his chariots, with the vargheists. This way I could use them to pick up the chariots from outside their reach and protect the bus that way, then swing them around to pick up his warmachines late game. Going straight at the warmachines meant getting into the threat range of those trolls, and I didn't want anything to do with that until the general was dead.

The Game:

I'm not going to break this up in turns as I'm not really recalling exactly how things went. This was game 3 after an 8am start, so I was starting to get a bit sluggish, though luckily my opponents were as well.

I pushed one unit of dogs at his warmachines on the left flank but they were quickly destroyed by doom divers. That freed his trolls to push up at me. I brought a unit of skeletons up behind a stone wall to buy them a bit of time and hopefully hold up those trolls until I could pick out his general.

His savages held back cagily, looking to counter-charge. I think he was looking for me to get mired in all of his fastcav and chariots, send the pump wagons and manglers in to whittle down the bus, then hit me with warmachines and maybe punk out a character before going in to clean up with the savages and trolls.

This is exactly what I was worried about doing, though, and luckily for me I had the chaff to gum up his chariots and fast cav and prevent that from happening, while pushing my bus right up the middle of the board at him. He tried to big foot my bus but I scrolled it, and his warmachines targetted the bus but didn't bring me below LoS levels.

Then I got my big break. I declared a charge first with my vargheists into his goblins and he stand and shot. Then I declared my bus into them and they fled. They bounced back through his pump wagons and manglers to within a few inches of the board, and what he thoguht was safety.

However I had a unit of dogs that I hadn't declared with and that he didn't see. Because they were in dart formation they had the maneuverability to still hit them, and though it was a long charge it was legal. They declared and he auto-fled right off the board, taking his BSB with him. Vargheists redirected into his chariots and the bus just fail-charged a few inches forward, and closer to the savages.

His trolls finished off the skeletons they were fighting, but I put my other unit into their flank to pin them down a while longer. He put manglers through my vargheists but couldn't finish them off. Bus made a 10" charge into his savages and thrashed them. He was steadfast on a 9 and failed it, running through his own warmachine and off the board.

Bus turned around and cleaned up the trolls, while the final remaining vargheists ripped through his warmachines.

RESULT: 20-0 for the Vampires

Big win for me, though I definitely had some lucky rolls to thank for that. My opponent was definitely on the ropes after that big mistake with the goblins, but I was probably only looking at a 15-5 or so before the savages blew that LD check.

I still think I played this game alright, though. Putting the bus on the other flank would have been a mistake, and I think there were more easy points to clean up in the chariots than in the savages and trolls. By cleaning up the little things first, when he was still willing to fight me, I was able to go after the big blocks afterwards when they couldn't really get away.

This win puts me at 40 out of a possible 60 points, on around table 6 or so. However I am now going into my 9th-12th consecutive hours of warhammer, so this final game is going to be as much about stamina as it is about playing well. If I don't draw a relatively straightforward matchup then I might be in trouble, as my opponent will be more familiar with his battle strategy while my exhausted mind will struggle to improvise on the spot.
Feb 2, 2014
Just wanted to say I love your event and game write-ups! You always include just the right amount of detail for me to imagine what's going on without things becoming too long. Looking forward to the next instalment. ;)
Nov 13, 2013
Just wanted to say I love your event and game write-ups! You always include just the right amount of detail for me to imagine what's going on without things becoming too long. Looking forward to the next instalment. ;)

Thanks! I really appreciate the kind words. I do these reports mostly because I find reflecting on my games really valuable for its own sake, but it's great to know that people appreciate the effort nonetheless :)

And without further ado:

GAME FOUR: Night Goblins (12.7)

Ricky Fischer – Dimensional Cascade – Orcs and Goblins 12.7

Night Goblin Warboss 151 Great Weapon, Armor of Silvered Steel, Talisman of Preservation

Night Goblin Warboss 161 Hand Weapon, Light Armor, Shield, Wizarding Hat

Night Goblin Warboss 176 Spear, Shield, Armor of Destiny, Dawn Stone, Great Cave Squig

Night Goblin Warboss 148 Light Armor, Shrieking Blade, Shield of Ptolos, Dragonbane Gem, Arabyan Carpet

Night Goblin Great Shaman 175 - Spells of da Little Waaagh! Level 4

Night Goblin Big Boss 74 Light Armor, Shield, BSB, Standard of Discipline 47

Night Goblins 266 Shield, Full Command, Netters, 2 Fanatics 45

Night Goblins 260 Shield, Full Command, Netters, 2 Fanatics

23 Night Goblins 99 Short Bows, Full Command

8 Trolls 280

35 Night Goblin Squig Herd 210 21 Cave Squigs, 14 Night Goblin Herders

35 Night Goblin Squig Herd 210 21 Cave Squigs, 14 Night Goblin Herders

Doom Diver Catapult 80

Doom Diver Catapult 80

Mangler Squigs 65

Mangler Squigs 65

Night goblins!

This is Ricky Fischer from the Dimensional Cascade podcast, who won Best Painted at the US Masters last year. And oh man was it deserved.
Sep 22, 2010
Yeah Pirate your rapports is always an enjoyment to read.
Dont take to long before you post the rest of the matches!
Nov 13, 2013
Yeah Pirate your rapports is always an enjoyment to read.
Dont take to long before you post the rest of the matches!
Thanks!! And I'm trying :tongue:. Though the forums aren't helping by eating the post I just made. Argh!

Pregame Analysis:

So I don't think I quite emphasized enough how gorgeous Ricky's list is, so I'll gush on it a little more. Not only does it have that extremely impressive, entirely scratch-built display board, but every *INDIVIDUAL* goblin has a free-handed yellow checker pattern along the edge of his hood. The trolls have greenstuffed hoods to match. The squiggs are masterfully blended. He's using forgeworld squigg gobbas for Doom Divas and they look fantastic, and his giant-ass manglers are amazing as well.

However on a competitive front, unfortunately for Ricky I think this is a really bad matchup for him. The killer combination of doom divers and rock lobbas that usually threaten my bus are absent in his list. While he can certainly bring the bus down into the red zone he has nothing to capitalize on a loss of Look Out Sir!, and even worse I can start allocating wounds onto characters that I'll just heal away in my next magic phase.

That said, one advantage that he DOES have is a whole whack of bodies that it's going to take me a while to chew through, and a 470 point advantage from the comp differential. If he can slow me down and bog the bus down with bodies he may hold me to a narrow victory or even a draw.

For my part I'm going to need to make sure I go in hard and go in soon. I'm going to have to throw the vargs into a big brick to do some damage, but make sure I don't lose them as I really can't afford to bleed anything in this matchup. My biggest threat to him, when it comes down to it, are actually the skeletons. One failed fear check and I'm likely to win combat and he won't be steadfast.


By the time my second unit of dogs are down it's pretty clear that he's decided to castle up in the corner, around a roughly 5"x5" piece of impassable. Smart plan.

He puts his bigger squigg horde down to plug the gap between the impassable and the board edge, with a catapult and mangler behind. On the other side of the impassable he puts his trolls, with the other squigg horde just outside them, and then a goblin brick with his level 4 and the two solo characters. There's another goblin brick in there somewhere too.

In behind these goes his other goblins with his general/BSB, and his other mangler and catapult.

I deploy my skeletons near the board edge, to stop the squiggs from sweeping around to support (flank charge from the skeletons would likely spell the end of them). I then put my bus across from his squiggs/trolls, with the vargheists beside to support. Other skeletons deploy to follow up behind the vargs.

For magic he rolls up goblin spells that I don't remember, and I think Heavens on his level 2? Didn't matter as he never cast a spell with them that I can recall.

I roll up both curse and winds. I also drop Hellish Viggor for Invocation...because why wouldn't you, right?

The Game:

So as before, I'll just give an overview of this game in a broad sense as I recall very few of the details about it.

Early game I push forward hard with everything. He loses the goblins wtih his level 4 early, I believe from fleeing the bus then getting pushed off the table. In exchange I lose one unit of vargheists, and the other gets pinned down by his solo characters who hold them there all game and eventually wear them out.

Around turn 2 or 3 I get my bus into his squigg herd and push through a small Wind of Death. It goes through the squiggs and two units of night goblins, killing around 50 models. Man do I love that spell against horde armies!

My blenders slaughter slaughter the squiggs but they're steadfast and stick, and he charges into the flank with his trolls to try and support. However what he fails to notice is that I've charged the squiggs such that any flank charge would be majority in the woods when that happens. I blend the squiggs to a man for combat res, and the trolls are on double 1s. They break and I catch them, though bouncing into the impassable terrain for my troubles.

This is where I make a huge mistake. Next turn, rather than waste a turn of wheeling out of the way of the impassable to charge next turn, I decide to charge out one of my vampires instead. Lady vampire charges into the flank of the squigg herd, which she can do since she's on a hellsteed. Bus reforms to face his bunker for next turn.

My turn goes swimmingly. Lady vampire smashes kills 9 squiggs and wins by a bunch, but they stick. However the next turn she misses one of her attacks, even with the reroll.

It's alright though. No worries.

...then she rolls three '1's to wound.

The one wound red furies and fails to hit even with a reroll.

I'm at a flank and a wound to his 3 ranks. It's okay, only losing combat by 1!

...then he slips a wound past my ward save. Now it's a flank and a wound to his 3 ranks and a wound. I lose by 2. She's only got 2 wounds left. She pops.

Down behind I eventually pick up one of his solo chars, but the one on the squigg hopper picks up my vargheists for the trouble.

We tally up the score....

Result: 16-4 for the Vampires

So worse still, I thought that I'd given myself a disposable vampire but it turns out that I spread things out and made lady vampire my general. Thus that nets him another 100 points. Ugh!

After scenario objectives (mine was get a unit with steadfast within 3" of the centre, which I had with my skeletons) and comp differential it ends up being a 16-4 victory for me. Losing that vampire cost me the 20.

Frustrating, but can't really complain. After 12 hours of warhammer I'm happy to be standing, and sitting on 56 out of a possible 80 points puts me tied at 6th place and well ahead of the other VC players for the Best Vampire Counts trophy.

Matchups are posted, and I'm up against the following lizardmen list for tomorrow:


Slann Mage-Priest

Focus of Mystery 35pts, Soul of Stone 25pts, Sceptre of Stability, BSB, Cold Blooded; Mage-Priest

Saurus Oldblood
Cold Blooded; Predatory Fighter; Great Weapon; +2S, Two-handed; Light Armour; carnosaur
Charmed Shield, Talisman of Preservation, The Other Tricksters Shard,

Saurus Oldblood
Cold Blooded; Cold one, Armour of Destiny Heavy armour, Dawn Stone Bearer, Sword of Might Saurus

Great Weapon; +2S, Armour of Fortune, Dragonbane Gem Bearer gains, Cold One

Skink Priest – Lore of Heaven
Dispel Scroll

31 Saurus Warriors

Shield; Full command
10 Skink Skirmishers
10 Skink Skirmishers
11 Skinks Cohort + 1 Kroxigor + Musician
5 Chameleon Skinks
3 Terradon Riders
3 Ripperdactyl Riders
Ancient Stegadon

Night-before analysis:

Can't complain at all about this matchup. He's got skinks, but not enough to slow me down. He's up 570 points on me, but he's got enough slow-moving targets I can pick up for points that I'm not too concerned. My skeletons can pin his cowboys and chump challenge to beat them on combat res and hopefully run them down. My bus can easily pick up his saurus, his steg, the skrox unit, and hopefully his Slann depending on where he's sitting. Vargheists can pick up the rest.

After discussing the matchup over drinks I'm feeling confident. I'll have to be careful, but I think I can get a lot of points out of this matchup if I play it right. By the time I go home I've talked my self up to where I'm drunkenly proclaiming that I will 20 him in the morning.

Stay tuned to see whether I can follow through on that :tongue:
Nov 13, 2013

Sunday morning I there's four of us driving out to the event. Funnily enough, three of us were all within a handful of battle points, and two of us were actually paired up first round.

The rankings as of the that morning looked something like this:

1) Chaos Dwarfs (72/80)
2) Demons (~69/80)

3) Dark Elves (~67/80)
4) Dark Elves (~67/80)

5) Lizardmen (61/80)
6) Me (56/80)

6) Chaos Dwarfs (56/80)
7) Warriors (~55/80)

As you can see the top tables are pretty tight. I'm 16 points behind table 1, but the matchup on table 2 is such that they're probably going to have an extremely bloody 10-10 or 12-8 against each other. The more I read my opponent's list the less I'm thinking that a 20 is going to be possible, but I'm still figuring a 15-5 is within my abilities.

However, things change when we get to the venue. The partying the previous night had continued well past when I ducked out, and a couple players went pretty nuts on ordering round after round of shots.

...one of those is the Dark Elf player on table 2. Nobody has seen or heard from him since the night before. His phone goes straight to voicemail. His car is in the parking lot of the venue still, and his home is across town.

Fifteen minutes past start time, and it's looking like he isn't coming. That means matchups reshuffle, and I'll be paired against my buddy's chaos dwarfs. I look over his list while I go out for breakfast.

Chaos Dwarfs - 12.3
Sorcerer Prophet
– 400 General Lore of Hashut Charmed Shield, Talisman of Preservation, Arabyan Carpet

Daemonsmith – Lore of Fire Dispel Scroll 7, Opal Amulet

Castellan 12 BSB 10, The Mask of the Furnace

Taur'ruk 12 Sword of Might, Dragonhelm, Other Tricksters shard

Hobgoblin Khan 2 Wolf 2, relic sword

33 Infernal Guard 17 Banner of swiftness, Full Command, Naptha Bomb

7 Bull Centaurs w/Great Weapons 18 Champion

Deathshrieker Rocket 10 4

Deathshrieker Rocket 10 4

Hellcannon 20

6 Warmachine Points 14 18
Total 177 300 - total comp 123​

A better matchup couldn't really be asked for. That big infernal guard brick are sitting ducks. The death shriekers will go down quick to vargheists. Bull centaurs are faster but I should be able to catch them with my bus in time to turn around and shred the infernal guard. Only one unit of chaff. Better yet is that outside of ash storm, he really doesn't have much of anything that's going to threaten my bus.

I think this one's going big my way. That means I might actually be in the running for the podium if the top tables don't go big either way.

By the time I get back from breakfast the matchups are posted. And this is what's sitting at the table in front of me.

Dark Elves (10.3)

(General) dark steed, giant blade, dawnstone, OTS, cloak, shield, heavy armour

Sorceress Level 4 (beasts), dark steed, ironcurse, sceptre of stability

Master Dark Peg, cloak of twilight, heavy armour, cloak, shield, BSB

Master enchanted shield, luckstone, sword of antiheroes, heavy armour, cloak, BSB, on foot

Death Hag cauldron

Death Hag ogre blade, rune of khaine

28 witch elves, FC, razor standard

11 dark riders shields, FC

9 shades banner

5 harpies

6 warlocks

bloodwrack shrine

...and there goes any hope whatsoever of winning the tournament.

The drop meant that the lizardmen player bumped up to play this dark elf army, and I bumped down to play my buddy's chaos dwarfs. However the LM and DE players were also in the same club, and the TO decided that wasn't okay. So he switched the matchups.

I've been trying to get over it, but I'm still pretty annoyed about this. The pack said that club immunity would only last the first three games, after which it would be pure battle points. It's one thing to get knocked out of the running by drawing a bad matchup in the late rounds. It's quite another to be GIVEN a bad matchup because the TO decided to mess around with the top-table pairings in game 5. Left a bad taste in my mouth.

I feel bad looking back, because I'm pretty sure it was very apparent to my opponent that I was NOT pleased to see his army across the table. I was also tired, grumpy, and my coffee wasn't in my body yet. Not the sort of behaviour I'm particularly proud of. I've been trying hard to be less of a cunt at the table, and I almost certainly let my frustration get the better of me here. Ought to have better control over my emotions than that...

However by the time units started going down on the board, I'd decided that I was going to make the best of a bad situation.

...to be continued...
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Nov 13, 2013
Game 5 - Pregame Analysis:

This game sees me paired up against one of the top-ranked players in our region, who represented us at the US Masters last year. Not only that, but he's running a list I'm truly concerned about. Of all of the lists submitted for the tournament, there were only 4 matchups that I considered "unwinnable," being matchups where I would be thrilled to walk away with even a 10-10. My first round matchup was one of those, and this was another.

To start, he's 230 points up on me off the gate. Both my dogs and my vargheists are also very vulnerable against him. That's 548 points he can pick up with minimal effort, and which including the comp differential is a 15-5 for him.

Looking at his list, the only thing particularly vulnerable is his witches. I'll spend some time eating chaff, but I should be able to catch and crush that unit before the end of the game. If I get the witches and the two hags that's 848 points, putting me at a draw. If I can catch his foot BSB while I'm at it then all the better.

Thus my strategy for the game is to crush the witches as early as possible, preserve the rest, then try and pick up some extra points where possible. The dogs and vargheists I'm expecting to lose, and I'm hoping to preserve the skeletons.

The Game:

He deploys his bloodwrack, fast cav, and characters on the left, the witches roughly in the centre, and his brolocks out on the flank with some harpies.

I deploy my bus in the middle, skeletons on either side, and vargheists on the outside of them. Dogs vanguard forward to prevent him from coming at me...which of course he doesn't, simply shifting his battle lines around.

He wins first turn and reforms his witches to run and hide behind the rock. I push forward hard and try to Gaze off the harpies before they can chaff me, but he burns his Sceptre to stop it. I'm too far away for raised zombies or marching dogs to block the witches from getting out of my way.

I initially use my vargheists to try and control his brolocks, but realize too late that I probably couldn't take them in combat. He's got 12 ASF S4 poison attacks and a 4++, versus my 15 non-ASF S5 attacks and no saves at all. I try to redeploy the vargheists to go after his bloodwrack instead. However he whittles the first unit down with shooting and magic to just tow bodies on one turn, then blows the whole second unit up with an IF'ed big doombolt (killing 1 of his brolocks for the trouble) in one turn and finishes the other off with his peg master. Ugh.

In better news my bus crushes the harpies and overruns, while successfully blocking the witches from getting away with a wall of zombies. He charges out one of his hags to clear the zombies while his witches reform to face and the cauldron bails out of the unit, just outside my bus' LoS, hoping to slow me down a bit more. Hag promptly dies to return attacks from the free zombies (huzzah!)

Elsewhere my skeletons have been attempting long-bomb charges into his units, hoping that 5 turns of 11" charges will net at least one. Unfortunately none do, and he combocharges one of them with the chariot and a master and grinds them out before the bus can come back to save them.

My bus mulches the witches in two rounds then turns to face the cauldron. I charge in and he challenges. I accept with my level 4 blender. I allocate 3 attacks against the hag and 2 against the cauldron, and promptly whiff. Return attacks grind 2 wounds off of my vampire. In the next round I kill off the hag but the two cauldron wenches each slip a wound through.

...one wound left. Just need to make two 3+4++ saves. Make one on the armour...

...then fail the ward. Vampire dies.

Bus avenges him by beating the cauldron on CR and running it down, but the damage is done. Losing my vampire lord drops the match from a 10-10 draw to a 14-6 victory for him.

Post-Game Analysis

Nooooooooo! Everything was going so well. Stupid vampire and his stupid hellsteed. If he'd been sitting on a barded nightmare he'd still be alive! Grrrr.

In retrospect I made a number of mistakes that could have helped this match go differently. I should have had my vargheists out on the left flank right form the get-go, where they might have been able to pick up his shades, bloodwrack shrine, or *something* before going down. As it stood they basically did nothing save die.

I also should have seen how my opponent could have used that terrain to his advantage. I had pick of sides, and there was no reason to grant him the advantage of terrain.

All that notwithstanding, it was a tense and amazing game against a very talented opponent. If I'm not going to win the tournament then I at least hope to get in some really challenging games, and this opponent absolutely did not disappoint in that regard.

I'm also really starting to recognize the deficiencies of the double varg packs. It's an amazing unit, and there are certainly great synergies in the two packs working in tandem. However in matchups like this I'm really suffering from ways to reach out and strike at an opponent who isn't going to be within my charge arc by next turn.

One more game to go, and hopefully I'm up against someone I can pick some points off. I had a decent lead on the other VC players for the Best Vamps trophy, but quite a number of them crushes their opponents this round putting them in spitting distance of catching up to me. Needing to do well next round to hold onto that lead, and hopefully get a decent placing to help with my rankings for Masters qualifying...
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Nov 13, 2013
Game 6 - Wood Elves (11.6)

+ Lords +​
Spellweaver (300) High Magic
Scroll of shielding (15) Elven Steed (20) Level 4 (35)
Spellweaver (265) High Magic
Level 4 (35) Dispel Scroll (25) Elven Steed (20)
Glade Lord (265)
The Helm of the Hunt (20) Dragon Bane Gem (5) Giant Blade (60) The other trickster’s shard (15) Elven
Steed (20)
Glade Lord (261)
Glittering Scales (25) Potion of Strength (20) Talisman of Preservation (45), Asrai Spear (3) Elven Steed (20)
Shield (3)
+ Heroes +
Glade Captain (114)
Elven Steed, Battle Standard, Great Weapon
+ Core +
18 Glade Guard (290)
Banner/Musician (20) Trueflight arrows (54)
20 Glade Guard (335)
Full Command (30) Trueflight arrows (60) Gleaming Pennant (5)
+ Special +
10 Wild Riders (290)
Full Command (30)
10 Wild Riders (280)
Banner/Musician (20)
+ Rare +
Great Eagle (50)
Great Eagle (50)


Day two is just NOT my day for matchups.

My second opponent for the day is Peter Davis of Chumphammer pseudo-fame, another one of the top players in our regions (and another of the players who represented us at Masters last year). He's exceedingly talented at a style of avoidance play that - while perhaps not as well-suited to 20-0 Swedish as it is to our usual Pacific Northwest style of uncomped WLD - is still very difficult for my list to handle.

What's more, though, is that his bus is a rock to my bus' scissors.

The basic premise is that he plunks all of his characters into one of the two wild rider units. That bus then dances around you all game spamming High Magic spells on 1-2 dice, while protecting his vulnerable archer units. Every spell that goes off gives him an "ignore-a-wound" counter from the lore attribute, which count as a successful save when used. That means no red fury. It basically yanks the power cord out of my expensive vampire bus.

We played this matchup in practice and he 20-0'ed me with laughable ease. Thus my goal for this match is essentially to avoid getting tabled, and scrounge whatever points off of him that I can get.

He's up 360 points on me, and I don't think my vargheists can withstand combat against anything in his army save those eagles. Eagles that' he'll be throwing in front of my bus while powering up his own to crush me.


Board has very little terrain save forests, which won't do me much good against his trueflight shooting and magic missiles. There is one hill on his left flank, which he deploys a unit of wildriders behind. He then deploys both his archers, and his other wild riders on the other flank. Eagles go on the outside of the wild riders.

I array my dogs across the middle of the board, then my skeletons, and my bus down in between them. Vargheists go one on each flank.

He puts his characters into the wild riders behind the hill. I vanguard up, and he stays put.

The Game:

First turn I used my dogs to pin down both his wild riders, while I advanced on both his archer units. He took down Gaze dice vs dice, then scrolled Raise Dead.

Eagle I failed to gaze jumped in front of my bus. Other one swooped around to do the same next turn, and to where I would need to turn about-face to shoot him with another Magic Missile. Shooting and magic knocked a varg unit down to a single unit on one turn.

Wounded vargheist unit fled back to my board edge. Other vargheists charged the eagle, while the bus maneuvered around to threaten his archers. Gaze against the archers was dispelled, and some zombies went up in front of the wild riders, to where their overrun would give me a countercharge with my skeletons.

Vargs FAILED TO KILL THE EAGLE, and then FAILED TO RUN HIM DOWN. Lazy friggin' vargheists. Luckily for me the last wound was dealt to him by dangerous terrain.

He then charged his wild riders into the zombies, killed them, and overran to right in front of my skeletons. Shooting and magic knocked the vargheists down to the champion and one model on a single wound.

My turn I charged the skeletons into the wild riders. Bus had an 11" charge into his archers and failed, ambling forward 5". Vargheists are dead soon anyways, so jump in front of the bus to buy me another round. In magic we get something like 4-3 phase. I put two at Gaze on the eagle and he dispels it with his 3. I then put 5 into Wind of Death.

This is the crux of my gambit. His wild riders are in 2 ranks, meaning I get 2d6 S3. Average 7 hits and 3.5 wounds. All I need to do from there is a couple more wounds and I might actually be able to grind out the wild riders with my skeletons. Worth a shot at least.

My position is such where there is just under 6" between my mage and his wild riders, meaning that literally anything but a misfire hits the wild riders. I roll up the artillery for distance...

...and roll a misfire. Template scatters back through my lines, killing 4 knights and 16 skeletons :(

Well that didn't go as planned. Skeletons do nothing to the wind riders and they do a bunch in return. I crumble some and he reforms to maximize attacks.

His turn eagle jumps in front of my bus, his bus goes into the vargs and he screens the overrun with his own archers. Wild riders grind out the skeletons. Shooting takes my wounded skeletons down to 20 or so models.

I put my skeletons into his eagle and reform my bus for turn 5 charges. Eagle breaks but isn't caught. My skeletons bump up against my bus and stop.

His turn the eagle rallies. Shooting and magic knock the skeletons down to a dozen.

My turn I declare a charge into his archers and he flees. I then redirect into his other archers who backed up, needing an 11" and fail.

His turn he can't charge with his bus because he chaffed himself with the archers last turn to prevent a bad overrun. He briefly considers putting his other wild riders into my bus' rear but decides better of it, and just moves them to where I can't see. Eagle rallies. He moves his bus to cover his vulnerable archers. Magic knocks the skeletons down to just the standard bearer.

My turn, and it's bottom of 6. I can't catch his other archers, who he's hid behind the wild riders. I can't catch his other wild riders because they're outside my LoS.

However looking down at the board, I realize that skeletons, my black knights, and my dogs are all below 25%, meaning that per tournament rules they give up 50% victory points. Thus I decide the best way to get points is to try and raise some back up while magicking half points out of either the eagle or the wild riders.

Magic phase I roll up 6-2. I throw two dice at gaze, and decide to go for the safer Eagle rather than gamble on knocking 7 wounds off the wild riders. Funnily enough I deal exactly 7 wounds to the eagle, killing it. I then throw my remaining 6 dice at a 12" bubble Invocation, and he stops it. That's the game.

I give up one unit of Vargheists, one unit of skeletons, my chaff, and one banner, plus half points for a unit of dogs, my black knights, and my other skeletons.

He gave up his archers and both eagles.

Result is a 15-5 victory for him. Without the half points it would have been an 11-9 or 12-8 to him, I believe.

Post-game Analysis:

A tough matchup, but I think I played it reasonably well. I probably would have been better off holding my vargheists in reserve, as they didn't really do anything this game save absorb shooting and act as really expensive chaff.

This was another matchup where I really wished I had more ways to reach out and touch my opponent. A terrorgheist would have been a really nice asset to have, even if he would be eating shooting and magic all game. Might have given the vargheists breathing room to do something, though.
Nov 13, 2013
Tournament Wrap-up:

0-20, 20-0, 20-0, 16-4, 6-14, 5-16 = 67/120 points.

Of the other two vampire players, the one who I was really competing with got 0-20'ed then 11-9'ed IIRC, putting him a mere 2 points shy of me.

The other one who was way behind start of day two 20'd both his opponents and pulled ahead of me...by a single battle point. Noooo!

So I lost my best VC trophy, and landed a respectable 16/42 overall. Short of my goal of top-10, but still a respectable finishing.

Best General was, funnily enough, the Lizardmen player I was initially matched up against round 5. He 20'ed my friend's Chaos Dwarfs, then went on to 20 the other Chaos Dwarf player, vaulting him to the top. Second place went to my 5th round Dark Elf opponent. My first-round Skaven opponent was also in the running to win. However he got called in for a work emergency and had to miss most of the second day.

Pictures of all the winners can be found HERE.

As frustrated as I was at the time about the game 5 matchup issue, looking back I'm still happy with how things turned out. I ended up with two very challenging games second day that I learned a lot from, and I give me lots to think about looking towards my next tournament. In the very least it uncovered some holes in my list and playstyle that I need to work on if I want to achieve my goals of qualifying for the PNW Masters team and placing decently in Vegas should I make it there.

Next tournament now is Wet Coast in July 3-4. 2500 uncomped, no End Times, and an interesting pack of scenarios meant to encouraged balanced lists. I don't expect they'll succeed in that goal, but I look forward to the exercise either way. :)

Thanks for reading!
Mar 11, 2015
Great write-ups! Those were definitely some rough matchups along the way, but that's how it goes sometimes. I feel like Vargheists have a really tough time against Elf lists in general with being as squishy as they are. Are you thinking of switching the list up some for Wet Coast?
Nov 13, 2013
Great write-ups! Those were definitely some rough matchups along the way, but that's how it goes sometimes. I feel like Vargheists have a really tough time against Elf lists in general with being as squishy as they are. Are you thinking of switching the list up some for Wet Coast?

Yeah not super thrilled with the double units of vargheists. Two is certainly better than one, due to the way they can overrun into multiple combats and overlap their threat ranges. However I feel like they don't help me in the matchups I really struggle against. My last two matchups I felt like they did very little besides bleed points.

My thought is to drop a unit of vargs and a wizard level off the level two for a terrorgheist. Gives me a big threat that should take some heat off the bus, and something that can reach out and touch things that are dancing around me.

It means finishing my terrorgheist though, which is something I didn't have time for prior to Victory or Death. Had I been able to do so I actually would have changed this list up a bit, trading the vampire lord for a terrorgheist, two spirit hosts, and a wight king with potion of toughness and sword of antiheroes. No scroll, but comps in at 11 and might actually have been even stronger against all those nasty bus lists jammed with characters. Weaker against BotWD than the mundane-equipped vampire lord, but you don't see that much in Swedish anyways.
Nov 10, 2014
Very interesting reads pirate. I'm curious though on what you think of how the initial units in your list have performed and what changes you'll be applying in the future
Nov 13, 2013
Very interesting reads pirate. I'm curious though on what you think of how the initial units in your list have performed and what changes you'll be applying in the future

General (Vampire Lord): Potion of Strength; Armour of Destiny; Dispel Scroll; Red Fury; Quickblood; Level 2 Wizard (Lore of Vampires); lance; shield; Hellsteed 473
Base (-15), Level 2 (-3), Dispel Scroll (-7), Hellsteed+Red Fury (-6), Quickblood (-5), Red Fury+Quickblood (-20) = -56

VERDICT: While this build doesn't have the staying power to act as your only vampire, I'm extremely happy with her as a secondary. Between the two of them they can murder just about anything they touch, and it's rare that there's anything left by the time she drops down to S5. And when there is, it's generally T3/4 with no armour so the S isn't a huge issue.

That said, I think the comp hit for the second VL is too high. I definitely suffered having an 8.0 comp rating. I suggested what I would do if I ran this tournie again, but sadly I didn't have the models this time around.

Vampire Lord: Talisman of Preservation; The Other Trickster's Shard; Ogre Blade; Red Fury; Quickblood; Level 4 Wizard (Lore of Vampires); shield; heavy armour; Hellsteed544
Base (-15), Level 4 (-21), 2nd Red Fury (-5), 2nd Vampire Lord (-10), 2nd cav char (-3), Ogre Blade (-3), Hellsteed+Red Fury (-6), Quickblood (-5), Red Fury+Quickblood+Magic Weapon (-26) =-94

VERDICT: A tried and true staple of the VC list. Wouldn't make any changes here...

...save the hellsteed. I really like the idea of the hellsteed, but it rarely pulls it out for me. It's basically just a more expensive and shittier version of the barded nightmare. 3+ saves cost me 500 points against the Dark Elves.

However my vampries are modelled to have wings, so there's really not much I can do. "Hellsteeds" is already a bit of a stretch from a WYSIWYG perspective. Calling them barded nightmares would be a bit much, and I'm not redoing their models.

If I build another vampire he'll be riding a zombie dragon or coven throne (both of which I anticipate being awesome next edition).

Wight King: Ironcurse Icon; Nightshroud; Dragonbane Gem; great weapon; Skeletal Steed (barding) 160
Base (-4), mounted (-1), nightshroud (-2), 3rd non-necro cav char (-7) = -14

VERDICT: This guy makes the bus work, period. He is indispensible to any list with a vampire lord.

39 Skeleton Warriors: The Screaming Banner; Skeleton Champion; musician; standard bearer 250 (-4)
38 Skeleton Warriors: Skeleton Champion; musician; standard bearer 220 (-4)

VERDICT: Big fan of the skeletons. Zombies might have stuck around longer in a few matchups, but I've had the skeletons win me combats they had absolutely no right to in circumstances where zombies would just die.

The screaming banner did nothing though. Thinking I'll just drop it for either a LD banner or a gleaming pennant, just to help with those combat reforms when they're stranded in the middle of nowhere.

5 Dire Wolves 40 (-2)
5 Dire Wolves 40 (-2)
5 Dire Wolves 40 (-2)
5 Dire Wolves 40 (-4)

VERDICT: Wouldn't change anything here either. Just as dead drops they're fantastic, and they muck about with people's movement phase and set my bus up for turn 2 charges without being counter-attacked. That's key.

Not sure if I'd want a 5th though. 4 felt like plenty.

10 Black Knights: Banner of Swiftness; barding; lances; Hell Knight; musician; standard bearer 305 (-18)

VERDICT: 10 black knights is definitely small, however they don't really *do* much of anything so more bodies is just more ablative wounds. They gave up their points in two games (against Ricky's goblins due to a mangler squigg landing on their heads and when I got tabled round 1), and half their points in the last game.

I'm considering dropping their lances for another body, or perhaps for some fellbats. The extra S6 attacks didn't really factor in much.

4 Vargheists: Vargoyle 194 (-10)
4 Vargheists: Vargoyle 194 (-10)

VERDICT: I *LOVE* vargheists. However I felt like two was a bit too much of a good thing. There are lots of targets for one unit, but two units of them is a bit saturated. I need something with ranged potential here.

I think I would rather have hex wraiths were they a bit easier to protect, but given the meta they're basically free points. Thus the terrorgheist is the only real option given my list.

I've also toyed with sticking a varghulf in here, but he's just objectively worse than the vargheists. Doesn't fly, fewer attacks, and while he does have the regen he's got so few wounds that he still dies in an awful hurry. If he was S/T 6 maybe he'd be worth his points. As it stands I'm not a fan.

The only other thing I've considered here is some morghasts. I'm thinking Archai might be a good tag-team for the bus. I don't own the models though, and they're not as fast as the vargheists. Would be a very different list.

2,500 points / (300-220)/10 = 8.0

VERDICT: The 8.0 definitely wasn't the best. I was way down on points every round, and I think I could have improved the list a lot with a rethink. However this is the best you can do with two vampire lords in Swedish, so there's that.
Mar 11, 2015
I still think a scroll caddy mini-vamp would serve you better than a second Wight King, but other than that your proposed changes look good! It is true that the little guys are squishy, but if you have them in there with a Nightshroud, they're not that bad off with a 1+ save and potentially a single reroll from a Luckstone.
Nov 13, 2013
I still think a scroll caddy mini-vamp would serve you better than a second Wight King, but other than that your proposed changes look good! It is true that the little guys are squishy, but if you have them in there with a Nightshroud, they're not that bad off with a 1+ save and potentially a single reroll from a Luckstone.
Baby blender is also what...100 points more expensive than the wight? Not sure if it's worth that for a dispel scroll. Also not sure what I'd cut to get those points. I'm also just not much a fan of hero vampires. Much of the reason that this list works is the T5 wall along the front of the bus, and allocating wounds to protect the points of the knights.

I've definitely thought of ways to keep the scroll in there though. I feel naked without one, especially in uncomped. Don't think it's worth dropping Ogre Blade off the VL though.