The slaughter at the iron mine

Remember the fist battle at out recent escalation league?. Well, the gods abandoned me. The dice gods at the very least, as the result was abysmal. Still, mistakes were made too, so the complete masacre to my forces was as much poor army selection and battlefield choices as the disfavour of lady Fortuna. Anyhow, this blog post tells all about the first game.

First things first: army lists and scenario

My army is as follows:

My opponents army as follows:

Yes, the clawshots are missing…..

Amy list

Close ups of the two armies at the bottom of this blog post

Here’s the Army’s general an a bit of fluff (Thanks @JW)

We is ‘ere first. ”We” is ofcourse the Ratkin empire. ‘Ere is a long abandoned mine belonging to our most hated enemies, the dwarves. 

And now some ‘pale skins’ decided to come and take over our mine.

Since our most esteemed Tyrant – ‘Overlord Squeak’ could not be bothered to crush these ‘pale skins’ he send me, lowly Warlock “Ore-Skra”

Ore-Skra is a warlock, just with the lighning bolt spell. The mediallion of autority that Overlord Squeek gave him ensures plenty of respect with the common soldier, more than any other Warlock. The ensuing jealousy from the fellow wizards will be a story for another time…..

First impressions of the army selection

Ouch, not one but TWO hordes of phalanx infantry while my hitting units are mostly cavalry? The fact that I faced three hordes AND a titan made that I needed my mobility and combined arms superiority to deal with the enemy army piecemeal.

I severely misjudged my opponent in hoping he would skip the phalanx units in favour of other (more powerful) units. Frankly, I didn’t know the phalanx upgrade to shocktroops, which makes them really good.

So, I had to choose my battles carefully.

The battle:

…… which was not meant to be.

First, I delegated my general to destroy the clawshots on the far edge of the battlefield. Even with his sword of slashing, after two turns of hitting the unit, they still stood defiant (although, wavered). Furthermore, I used both my cavalry to block hordes from attacking me. In hindsight, moving backwards with one unit of knights was maybe better to prevent them actuall hitting me and I could have spared my mounted sergeants.

Then, a flank charge of a unit knights into a unit of already damaged shock troops (32 attacks@ 3’s and then 2’s) resulted in only 7 wounds (and therefore a “steady”) . The following turn’s charge (after the knights were destroyed by a double charge from the mutant fiend and nightmares) with my pikemen resulted in the dreaded double one.

This meant the shock troops did not only kill the horde of shield wall, but also a regiment of pikemen, all while their presence made sure my knights got killed.

Finally, I positioned my other unit of knights in such a way that I had no choice to front-charge the horde of rat warriors, a less-than ideal target.

The only unit that did good was my siege artillery which never failed to hit and did quite a few wounds to the mutant rat fiend. Unfortunately, regeneration sucks and the rat fiend survived.

At the end of the battle, I’d only killed the single swarm crier and the shock troops while my army was destroyed completely, save for the gun and my poor general.

Fluff

Major Isthmus!” the sergeant reported after the rout. A bandage around his head and the dented brestplate showed this day’s ordeal.

What are our losses? ” came the major’s grumbling reply.

The day’s battle had been a disaster. After part of the expedition force had gone to escort the miners to the mine itself, the rats had struck. They surrounded the camp and even though the cavalry had returned in time to help them, the expeditionary force had simply been overwhelmed. The fleeing remains of the army had only escaped because the rats were gorging themselves on the dead bodies of their comrades.

About half of the knights have been killed or missing in action. The infantry did better.” was the sergeant’s reply. “How many injured? ” asked the major. “most of the rest of the knights. Of the infantry, about half are ready for duty” was the reply.

The major twirled his moustace in thought. The sergeant could see the smoldering rage in his eyes. “What do you do with rats? you poison them! Send word to the island of Topaz that if they want this iron mine, they will have to support me. We will get these beasts! Kill them with fire! kill them with poison! but most of all, kill them dead!

The sergeant quickly left the tent. He feared the Major’s sanity was one more casualty to this battle.

Close ups: humans

Close up: ratkin

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