Round Two of Bilbo's bash saw me bring out the Elves for another objective based Domination scenario. 600 points, as before, with another bonus mission. Both of our bonus missions were exactly the same as the first game. Neither of us would even come close to achieving those.
The philosophy behind the Elf army was much more simple than the Easterling Alliance. Here, it was all about the stormcallers, Delilah and Sam. If you are familiar with the training games that Rich and I have done, you know Delilah very well!
Basically, the stormcaller lies in wait for an advance (preferably by some sort of mounted or cav type unit), and then jumps out to cast Nature's wrath, using all my will dice in hopes of 'wild channeling', which would give me back my used will points!
Once the enemy is on the ground, they are pounced on by the elves, with spear support. My cavalry and Gwaihir slip around the back of the piles of downed enemies so that those guys cannot get back up and help out their fallen comrades.
After our setup, you can see that I have both stormcaller units on the extreme right and left.
As it would turn out, I would have been better off putting the unit on the left inside that ruined building, risking the bow shots from the Uruk-hai I was facing. You will see why soon.
The Isenguard orcs advanced quickly, seeking the objectives on my side. The archery for the orcs did not do a whole bunch, but it was something I had to consider each turn with the objectives relatively exposed. Here you can get a better view of the unit on the left.
The shaman had cast fury, and I knew what I had to do. The stormcaller tried to get into position to do his Nature's wrath...
Gwaihir waited behind them, with the thought that if the whole unit was knocked down, the Great Eagle would be able to fly over everything and squeeze the shaman. Even if he didn't kill him, the fight would be lost, and fury would be gone
In the center, I had to feign a few charges by the elf cavalry to make the orc unit in the center hesitate as much as possible. My plan was to have the stormcaller unit with Gwaihir wipe out the orcs on the left, link up with the Knights, and sweep the board to the right.
At this point, everything is setting us very well. Even on the right, I have a chance to do a big knock down with Delilah on some unsuspecting orcs...
The knights do a select set of charges in the center, hoping for some cheap kills, while Delilah prepares to KO the advancing marauders in front of her. This is where things would start to go awry. It started with the cavalry doing very poorly.
I lost priority for this crucial turn (a very very common theme for the weekend), but that is actually a good thing when I want to pull of this sort of 'blast and bash' attack combo. As long as the stormcaller is free, he can knock down all the enemy, and free up my own troops to whack them when they are down.
You can see that I pulled that off, and even killed the shaman! However, trying to come around the corner as I did limited the amount of guys I could get in there, and I did not kill enough orcs in the initial strike. This would cast me the game, eventually.
With repeated loss of priority, I have way less control of all the fights, which starts to bog me down on the left. I bring the cavalry over there to try and assist... the banner should certainly help!
Well, not really. Not only did I not kill the orcs on the left, I started losing troops of my own! Even with Seregond my champ, and the banner. Not good . Plus, time is starting to run short. Delilah does her knock down, which slows the orc advance, but they have too many troops over there for me to kill them all.
I do manage to extract myself from the orcs on the left, with one of my cav holding that objective. I needed to get the center objective to be contested, as the orc archers grabbed the one in the rear on the right side
I sent Gwaihir and one cav in a desperate charge in the center, positioning myself between the orcs and the objective. The idea was to win the fights and push them away from the objective if I could not kill them outright.
I did something similar on the objective in my right corner with some infantry. I made a ring around the objective, and shielded with everybody. I won almost all the fights, and pushed enough orcs out of the way to get that objective.
In the center, however, I was not able to kill one of the three remaining orcs, so we tied at 2/2 on that one. In fact, we tied on the objectives overall.
Only one more victory point opportunity remained. Wounds on the army general. Sadly, that early combat in the center with the cav charge put an unsaved wound on Seregond. This would give the orcs the one point they needed to win. Bummer!
However, the Knights of the Blood Rose would get some serious revenge on Day Two...