Wednesday, 5 March 2014

NZTC 2014 - My Dark Elf Experience (or lack of)

NZTC 2014 - My experience this year

Playing in my second to last game of the tournament: 
This photo nicely  summarises my experience in NZTC 2014. 

Up against the strong beasties, hard players, part of a team that valiantly fought, but lacked the overall punch ito list strength when taking on the big boys with tournament honed lists. 
All of us lacking tournament experience.

I ran my Dark Witch Elf B*tch bus, (much against my better judgement, but encouraged by Nick (no-one wants to face the witches) Jebson. Took 'em for fun anyway, but probably should have gone w the more competitive Cold One Bus. 

So I arrived with Morathi and a Death Hag on the Cauldron, 2 Hydras, 4 Repeater Bolt Throwers, a Lvl 2 on a cold one, 2 units of 11 Xbowmen (Darkshards, as they are now known), 2x 5 shades and Doodfire Warlocks x5. Dark Magic on Lvl 2, and Morthi choosing from the three lores as she is want to do. I retrospect I should have taken breath weapons on the Hydras, but Luc and I  had huge pressure on us to get our lists out, as we only returned from overseas a week or 2 out from the tournament. Also didn't have much time to play test the list either.

So lessons learned:
1. Take a tough, survivable list, grind it out rather than rely on magic and shooting.
2. Don't take a glass cannon (Morathi)
3. Draw your list up in time, play test it, play test it, play test it.
4. Don't listen to Nick.
5. If you take Hydras, take breath weapons on them.
6. The cauldron does not have leadership without the hag, without her it auto fails any leadership tests.

Game 1
Legion of Doom vs Team HAM
Druchii Civil War: Lachie Mulcahy

Almost didn't make it to this one, raced in from Kapiti to find opponent allocated, at table ready to roll.
Took some time to settle down, first game nerves, being late, no photos taken :(

Great game, friendly opponent that clearly knew all the strengths and weaknesses of the Druchii. His cold-ones outclassed my witches, which were expertly diverted. Both Morathis taken out, magic pretty even, poor rolls on winds of magic throughout game for both sides, no spectacular spells got off. Lachie's cold one knights eventually got the upper hand. Looked like it may be a close loss for a while, but then got caught by his master taking out the hag on the cauldron, with a auto leadership fail after that. (Sux, methinks, that statline! ) 
Witches and cauldron caught and destroyed My Druchii crumbles White-washed 20-0.

Game 2: Team Krak
Neil Williamson's Dwarfs.

One of the most fun games I have ever had against a Dwarf Army with a DE Army. Instead of a gunline with hammers Neil fielded Miners, Longbeards and Warriors, only 4 pieces of artillery, buffed up with the Anvil. Helga came as hero with one unit of Miners, arriving on turn 3. Shooting phases did not go well for him, other than taking out one Hydra. Warlocks and Morathi doing some damage, getting Okrams off twice on his unit of miners, whittling them down until only Helga remained. Valiant Bolt-thrower crews becomg an unlikely tarpit ! The witches charged through into the soft underbelly, and were surprised to see a cannon being dragged into their path as a diversion ! Thinks that's one for the books!

The last hydra gets through to the Anvil, but fails to take out the runelord, resulting in a stalemate

A most entertaining game, which eventually goes to Neil by 13-7 if I recall correctly
Thanks for a fun game, Neil!

Game 3: Team HAM
Thrown to Nick's Daemons!

Drew Nick's Daemons. 2 Skull cannons, bus of Beasts of Nurgle, 2 Units of Horrors and Lvl 4 Tzeench Wizard. This was always going to be painful for me.

Nick deploying his Daemons

The Eye opens, Daemons pouring forth

Bolt Throwers just out of charging distance of those Fiends, got a few shots in before they were annihilated

Thanks to good Ld they did not flee

Managed to kill the unit of Beasts with the Witches, but little else. Took 3 wounds of the Lvl  4 Tzeench /Keeper of Secrets w Xbowmen.  He then chose to go and hide on the furthest corner away. Skull-cannons took out Morathi and the Hydras on turn 2 and 3, and after that it really was game over for the Dark Elves. Can't even remember if I got any points out of this one. Great opponent and a fun game. How I hate those skull cannons. 
Good thing Pete's now nerfed them down to 1 per army in FOB-Lite;  if you ask me.

So endeth the First Day. 1/250th the Legion of Doom not doing too well, but enjoying the tournament.

Day 2
Game 1
First up Team Buckethead: Drew Reagan Ridge's Empire.
What a great game and opponent. Had a well-matched battle with the Druchii coming out on top in the end. 


Pensive looks as the Witch Elves carve their way through the Empire Knights

Before the massacre

Bolt-throwers picking off the Monstrous Cavalry, as did Doombolt, 
a very useful spell from the Warlocks, before they hit the flank of the W.E's
(Here seen doing the Conga on their way to smacking the oversized Chickens. 
Are those knights I see showing their heels? 

Shrunken Empire heads for Khaine...

A small but sweet victory, one of the most enjoyable games of the tournament: 
 game, opponent and enjoyment wise.

Day 2 Game 2
James Millington: WoC

Another hammering coming up for the DE's? 
Throgg bus, with serious Lvl 4 Demon prince, Khornish nasties, Hero on Daemonic Mount and dog units, Warshrine to buff up and 3 Skullcrushers to enforce WoC rule

Shooting and magic went well, James avoided the B*tchbus for most. Killed my Hydras early in the piece. WE got into Throgg and Trollbus, nerfed them with burning banner and Morathi added Melkoths, BT poured bolts into them before they got into battle, and then fed them to the witches.
 Nasty. I like. Think its the first time I've killed a Trollbus with Throgg driving.

Got into the spirit of the fight when I shouldn't have, and charged the Daemon Prince with Morathi. 
Well, that's always me- taking the fight to the enemy. Should have hidden her away, and it may have been a draw. Landed a few blows, but not enough to take him out. Exit Morathi...
A possible draw went to a loss.

A great and most enjoyable game against a humorous and skilled opponent. A really fun game, 
and in the end actually quite balanced, thanks to good magic rounds.

Day 3 Game 3
Jeff Kent's Empire

Up against the team tipped by Pete to finish in the top 5. Can see why, some big guns from the tournament scene here. Professional outfit, friendly but focused and efficient in their gaming. 
No quarter given or taken. In my game anyhow. (The way I approach surgery.) 
Think the experience was the same for all our team members.

Morathi leading the conga with Lvl 2 in tow.
Mostly to try and stay out of reach of the Hellblaster cannon end Empire Great cannons.

This unfortunately also kept her out of range of the majority of her spells. Hydras negated by murderous cannon fire. Only good moment was my skewering of a rank of Monstrous chickens with my BTs, one of which seemed to have a charmed life. Clever use of terrain, bad luck w fleeing Shades obstructing my WE's movement  and a counter-charge by a very small detachment unit of Xbowmen prevented my WEs and couldron from getting into the action. Out-maneuvred and out-shot.  the game went to Jeff. A lesson in technical playing and knowledge of the rules, delivered with surgical precision.
A good game, but DE's were no match for consistently accurate cannon fire and honed rule skills. Well played game, Jeff. 

 Some great looking armies from the tournament:

Not sure who this belonged to, but some great lizardmen

Phil Wu's HEs

My (faceless) son modeling the team T-shirt

LoD taking of the Bucketheads

All 1/250th of the Legion of Doom.


  1. Don't Listen to Nick, a good lesson.

    Nice write up of the event and i hope you will be willing to come to next years NZTC

    1. We'll all be there, stronger and better than ever before. With vicious lists ! Deamons with friggin' laser beams!

  2. what advice was that that i apparently gave? i feel very offended not to be listened too.

    1. Taking the B*tch bus. LOL. I knew I was taking it at my own peril though. If common sense had prevailed I would have taken the Cold One List, but I lived dangerously, and died spectacularly!

  3. Replies
    1. Was a great weekend. What else can you expect when you cram 60 gamers into one room!

  4. Hey Herman - nice write-up and it was good to meet and play you. I think you could have actually been more aggressive with Morathi and put some real pressure on me. you had quite a bit of the table (behind the building) you could have put her and targetted my war altar with snipes or purple suns.

    Cheers. Jeff

    1. Thanks Jeff. I think I was a bit "out of aggression" with her by the end of the tournament, had her taken out by artillery fire/Tough, hard hitting monstrous things all but one game by then, and yours was murderously accurate with that Engineer. She's a bit of a glass cannon as far as I am concerned. The fact that I have her mounted on a taller than usual mount also caused some arguments as to line of sight earlier in the tournament, so I wasn't even going to go there. I agree I should have used her casting ability better. I think I was a bit blinded by focussing on trying to get the Cauldron and WEs in, and you very efficiently used all the legit tactics to negate their threat.(My own shades obstructing them by fleeing into their path scuppered my game plan.) I learned a lot about empire tactics from that game! I've always considered my empire army to be a bit soft (Poss because they have mostly played Daemons, Ogres and Woc) Nice game, all a learning curve for me - only my 2nd tournament