Bone giant sees his path
Battle Report: Tomb Kings vs. Vampire Counts
2000 points, no special missions.
(Kodie took command of his tomb kings once more to battle against my vampire counts. This was that struggle)
The Tomb King Neheksettra has arisen from his tomb to hunt down an ancient foe, Zamenhotep. Zamenhotep, known as the Ebony Priest, was a priest at the same time that Neheksettra was a flesh and blood ruler of his empire. It was at Zamenhotep’s urging that Neheksettra agreed to undergo the rites to become a Tomb King and to forever guard his people. What he didn’t know is how Zamenhotep would loot the lands around while Neheksettra was asleep. Four thousand years later Neheksettra finds a chance for revenge.
(For the upcoming battle I made three mistakes. These mistakes were rather large ones altogether, which is why I have to detail them going into this battle.
First, I let the tomb kings undead march in the same manner that the Vampire Counts undead can – Within 12” of the army general.-- They cannot do that, but it will explain how they were able to close so very quickly upon the vampire counts forces.
Second, I was treating the Tomb Kings Icon bearer as a tomb prince with banner. I hadn’t noticed that the Icon bearer was a different hero choice and not an upgrade option as they are for most other armies.
Third, I let the incantation of Righteous smiting give the target unit their Full attacks when cast instead of just a single attack. So in the coming battle we will see the tomb king carrying his Blade of Setep cut through the armoured knights of the vampire counts with greater speed then he would otherwise have had.)
The tomb kings deployed with their bone giant on one flank, with the ushabti coming next. A large block of heavy horsemen was next, before the casket of souls up on the hill. 20 archers were deployed in a five by four square, lead by the tomb king and icon bearer also guarding the hill. Beyond them a block of chariots, 3 by 2 was seeking to flank the other side. In reserve a tomb scorpion awaited, as did a small unit of skeletons awaiting to be summoned by the icon bearer.
The vampire counts deployed in a clump as well. A group of 24 skeletons lead by a wight king. Next was the Vampire Lord Zamenhotep, ancient (but suffering from stupidity due to age and the 4+ ward the magic item gave) and magic rich. A level 4 wizard, generating two extra power dice and a lord of death leading another group of 24 skeletons with spears. Shielding the lord from trouble was a group of zombies to the front and a necromancer on a corpse cart to the side. Next to that was a group of eight black knights, a group of dire wolves and a line of five blood knights. The final flank guard was another group of zombies.
The vampire counts get first turn and rush forward. The dire wolves, black knights and trailing behind blood knights all launch down the middle as a spearhead. The zombies on either side move out to block flank routes while the skeleton units and their character leaders move to support each other in the middle.
The magic phase is a bit disappointing, as I had counted on the magical advantage that having the level 4 lord would give to overwhelm. Instead only a handful of new models were added to the units, and a couple of wounds dealt that became my spirit host model.
On the tomb kings turn, they got a charge in. Their heavy horsemen hitting the black knight unit dead on. The unit of chariots was also able to reach and smash into my zombie horde that was guarding my flank. The rest of the tomb kings moved up with the archer squad going to ten by two formation to hail down arrows. They do so into the dire wolf unit, twice thanks to their magic.
The chariot unit rides right overtop of the zombie unit, wiping them out and getting the overrun movement ahead. The battle between the tomb king heavy horsemen and the vampire counts black knights is more painful. The high armour saves on the black knights stops the tomb kings from scoring much of a victory at all, and they will be locked up in combat for quite some time.
The vampire counts ready to throw their spear. The dire wolves charge the tomb king archers, leaving the blood knight free to declare a charge against the casket of souls. The blood knights turn up to be out of range… The skeleton units move to head around the monolith hill structure. The corpse cart and necromancer turn to face the chariots. The summoned spirit host will be counted by a second, both who will move to intercept the chariots too.
For the vampire counts the turn is a mix. The dire wolves fall to a hound against the tomb king archers, but the black knights take out three tomb king horsemen. The zombie squad was re-enforced, but most of the other magic cast had no effect.
The tomb kings summon up from the sands both their Tomb scorpion as well as the hidden warrior squad thanks to the icon bearer. Both of these units charge into the rear of vampire count units. The scorpion goes for the vampire count skeleton squad, while the summoned warriors hit the back of the blood knights. The archer unit, lead as it was by the tomb king and his icon bearer, charge into the front of the knights. It was a really good play to catch the offensive power of the vampire counts in the trap.
What makes this an even better turn for the tomb kings is the success of their casket of souls. The vampire counts were unable to dispel it and it wiped out a large chunk of the black knights, as well as damaged other units. The vampire counts feel a great deal of pain.
The vampire counts want to regain the initiative, and launch a counter offensive. Their spirit hosts, immune to damage from the chariots charge. The skeletal spearmen turn around to face the scorpion, with the vampire count leading the counter attack there. The vampire’s distance from other units on the field from this play will be felt. The corpse cart tries to get close enough to the black knights and blood knights to grain them strikes first.
The necromancer on the corpse cart is able to summon up replacement black knights, stitching their shattered bones back together. The spirit host however loses combat against the chariots and begins to fade away. Only one wound remains out of the six the two spirit host models had.
The Tomb King is also able to have a victory, he uses his magical blade to cut through the armour on the blood knights, winning combat against them and then watching as they fail leadership by one (a loss they wouldn’t have suffered if the vampire hadn’t moved through his own unit). The vampire counts have lost their major offensive unit and the game just is crossing the half way marker.
The tomb kings push their advantage this turn. The bone giant charges the zombies, smashing into them and wiping out over half. The Tomb King and his icon bearer leave the archer squad and join the spearman squad on a charge into the flank of the black knights. The ushabti charge into the skeletons lead by the wight king.
With the blade of the Tomb King cutting down black knights like they were wearing butter, the black knights themselves lose combat and are lost to a man. The tomb king and his spearmen even follow up into the corpse cart, gloating on their success. The chariots drive off the last of the spirit host and are free to act as they wish on their next turn.
The vampire counts are feeling the hate now. Fully half of the army lost and what remains is defensive. The vampire count turns his unit around again, summoning up some zombies to cover his flank. The wight king and his skeletons are not able to do much against the ushabti.
The necromancer is cut down off the corpse cart by the tomb king, but it remains on the battlefield to battle some more. The zombies summoned to reinforce those battling the bone giant are just enough to replaced the losses this turn. But the end feels close.
The tomb kings press forward, with their heavy horsemen riding into the side of the corpse cart. They will barely be slowed, pushing through the corpse cart and turning towards the vampire count. The chariots will just ride overtop of the zombies summoned against them too, riding right into the front of the vampire counts and Zamenhotep. The bone giant will also finish off his zombie foes.
The wight king fighting the ushabti is having a rough go of it. He has only himself and a handful of skeletons now to do battle, and his magical blade is of no help against these foes. The vampire count is also aware of the danger he is in, summoning up anything that he can to aid him.
The tomb kings, to compare, just have to push forward on their turn. They take out the wight king and his bodyguard and have the bone giant charge into the side of the skeletal spearmen of Zamenhotep. All of that energy is enough to almost eliminate all the skeletons, but the ebony priest stands.
From here on out it is just a back and forth as Zamenhotep fights with his skeletal spearmen against the crushing tomb king advance. On turn six zamenhotep resummons some of his fallen spearmen, going from a low of 2 to 7. The most he had during the game was over 35, but that was many turns ago. Between his magic and close combat he takes the chariots down to 2, but it isn’t enough to win the game at this point.
But after all the back and forth Zamenhotep still lives at the end of the battle. Victory is his. Morally anyway. Otherwise it was an overwhelming sweep for the tomb kings.
And outside of the three mistakes I made, which added up was a large one (individually the mistakes were all small eh?) the game was clean and tactically a complete victory for the tomb kings. Well done.