Friday, 17 February 2012

WOTR: Battle Report - Rohan v Mordor

 "Now is the hour! Riders of Rohan! Oaths you have taken, now fulfill them all, to lord and land!"
                                 Eomer - Return of the King

This week saw my son Thomas attend the club to try his hand once again at WotR.  We started together over a year ago at Games Workshop and played plenty of battles, however he soon got bored and didn't want to continue…
I finally persuaded my him to come to East Grinstead War Gaming Club to play a Lord of the Rings/War of the Rings battle.  As we were playing Craig and he had decided to stay with his choice of Gothmogs Morannon Ors Battle Host, we agreed to try something new... Out came the Rohan army and despite the things I have read on the forums, I was kean to try them out and fielded an infantry heavy army (for Rohan).
Thomas wanted to play the infantry and I played the cavalry. 

It still seems strange watching someone else field and play with my Mordor army having spent a long time collecting, painting and playing with them... but I guess that is the price to find a WotR opponent in Sussex!

LotR: Gothmogs Morannon Orcs
Battle Host

Mordor force 1500 points 

Epic Hero:

6 x Comp of Morannon Orcs
- (with Banner)
6 x Comp of Morannon Orcs
 - (with Banner)
 - (with Captain)
6 x Comp of Morannon Orcs
WotR: Gothmogs Morannon Orcs 
Battle Host
 - (with Banner)
 - (with Captain)
6 x Comp of Morannon Orcs
 - (with Banner)
 - (with Captain)

1 x Troll Chieftain
3 x Mordor Trolls
1 x Catapult

WotR: Theodreds Knights Rohan,
Gandalf the white & Rohan Eored
Rohan Force 1500 points 
(Me and my son Thomas)

Epic Hero:
Gandalf the White

6 x Comp of Rohan Eoreds
 - (with Banner)
WotR: Erkenbrands Riders Rohan
 - (with Captain)

6 x Comp of Oathsworn Milita
 - (with Banner)
 - (with Captain)

3 x Oathsworn Bowman

 - (with Banner)
 - (with Captain)

6 x Comp of Erkenbrands Riders
 - (with Banner)
WotR: Grimbolds Hemingas Rohan
 - (with Erkenbrand)

6 x Comp of Theodreds Knights
 - (with Banner)
 - (with Theodred)

6 x Comp of Grimbold Helmingas
 - (with Banner)
 - (with Grimbold)

Craig lined the four formations of Morannon orcs at the back of the table and scattered the trolls between the formations, his catapult was positioned on the northern part of the battle board on a hill.

Thomas placed his archers to the south, next was 6 companies of Grimbolds Helminglas then 6 companies of warriors on foot (each of these had 6 comps of riders in front of them - one of which was Erkenbrands riders). Then at the northern half of the table was Theodred’s knights and Gandalf in with 6 companies of riders.

WotR: Rohan v Mordor
The battlefield had a small wood on the southern hill, a ruin in the centre (Thomas wanted it there even though I tried to dissuade him as it would hamper our cavalry).

Again we had our troops facing across the board, two 1500 point armies - Gothmogs Morannon Orcs battle host (steadfast against humans) against a lighter, less armoured Rohan.
I sighed and picked up some dice ready for the priority roll, our two 1500 point armies - Gothmogs Morannon Orcs battle host (steadfast against humans) and Rohan with 2 formations of Militia.

Turn 1

Thomas and Craig rolled, Craig won priority rolling a 6… he has an uncanny ability with the priority rolls! Gandalf declared that he would re-roll failed focus test this round.

Craig wasted no time and ran his Morannon at the double into the centre of the field straight to the building - clearly setting the tone. He then moved the rest of his troops forward in a line, his strategy against my cavalry was to advance slowly and together, something he had learnt from our previous games.

Gandalf started the movement phase casting magic at the nearest formation of orcs (Gothmogs), Terrifying Aura and Visions of Woe followed by Blinding Light  - the result was a Gothmogs formation of Morannon fight 0, and 1 dead... now I needed the charge.  
WotR: Erkenbrand & Grimbold's Hemingas advance

I advanced Erkenbrands riders in the south ahead of Thomas’ infantry, spread them out ready for bow fire, Theodred and his knights held their ground to allow the Riders next to him in the north to move forward and also spread out. 

Thomas moved the infantry forward slightly, angling both the Rohan Oathsworn Militia and Grimbolds Hemingas, (now occupied by 6 companies of Morannon orcs) towards the building and the archers advanced to the slope, by the trees.

WotR: Gandalf the White charges with the
Rohan Eored
Craig loosed his catapult with delight, the shot came crashing down on my advancing riders with Gandalf and killed 3 of them. His trolls were too far to throw their weapons.
Both my cavalry formation, being expert riders shot their bows straight at the Morannon in front of them… their shields and armour meant rolling 6 and 4’s, one dead from both formations, not what I was expecting. The archers fired at the Morannon and killed another 2. Rohan Oathsworn Militia and Grimbolds Helmingas threw their axes at the morannon in the building but only killed 2 due to their high defence, shields and being in a building!

WotR: Gothmog charged,
Mordor Troll counter Charge
Needing to take the initative from Craig the Rohan Captain with Gandalf called a heroic charge right in front of Gothmog and managed to jump the charge queue and successfully charged Gothmogs formation, in return Craigs troll charged the the Rohan riders, this was not ideal as he would inflict casualties on me first with the troll and lessen my changes of killed Gothmog in round 1!

WotR: Rohan Oathsworn and Grimbold lay siege
Next Rohans turn and Thomas keen to get in to the action charged the ruins with both the Rohan Oathsworn Militia and Grimbolds Helmingas in a desperate bid to outnumber the orcs and rain death on them before the rest of their rabble could descend on Rohan... a smart move, or so I thought.

WotR: Morannon orcs force back Grimbold Hemingas
The fighting started at the ruins, Rohan loose the charge bonus due to the Morannon hiding in the ruins, and so the dice are worked out, and rolled... but again the Morannon in the ruins are just too strong and Rohan are pushed back with a bloody nose winning the fight  with 4 Morannon dead and 8 Rohan. Thomas then rolled on the panic table and saved the Rohan troops from shame.

WotR: Rohan take casualties
The Rohan Riders along with Gandalf fight next.  

The Mordor troll struck first and easily killed 2 riders.

Next the riders of Rohan strike with the charge bonus manage to kill both the Mordor troll and as Gothmog didn't use any might to increase his fight '0' he looses 8 infantry.  

In return the Morannon orcs kill another 3 riders, a victory for Rohan, but it didn't feel like it!

Turn 2

Thomas and Craig rolled again, this time Thomas won priority rolling a 5… Gandalf again declared that he would re-roll failed focus test this round.

WotR: Gandalf joins Theodreds knights and
casts Blinding Light on Mordor Troll
I sensed that with another Mordor Troll and 5 companies of Morannon Orcs to fight the Rohan Rider Eored would not last the next round and so moved Gandalf to join Theodred and his riders ensuring the I used Blinding light to reduce the trolls fight to '0' in preparation for the next fight.

I then moved Erkenbrand's riders forward to engage the Mordor Troll advancing int he south as well as another formation of Morannon Orcs. 

Thomas' archers shot at the troll and manage to inflict a wound counter, Erkenbrand's formation shot at the Morannon to soften them up and manage to kill two. In reply Craig's troll threw his weapon and killed a rider and his catapult rains death on on of Theodred's knights.

WotR: Erkenbrands Knights charge orcs and trolls

Thomas felt a bit left out now as the cavalry was doing all the fighting and he was stuck behind waiting for a gap to get into the fight and couldn't even shoot.  

I charged Erkenbrand's Eored straight into the advancing Troll at an angle that hit the Morannon Orcs - my plan was to take away any charge bonus from either the Mordor troll of the Morannon Orcs, and it work very well.

WotR: Gandalf and Theodreds Knights charge Mordor Troll
To the North My remaining Rohan Rider Eored charged the Morannon Orcs while Theodred charged the Mordor Troll.

With priority I chose the Rohan Eored firrst and killed 3 Morannon, but lost 2 riders - this still amazingly left 2 riders.

Next Theodred would fight.  The Mordor Troll again got the strike first and killed a knight in the melee, Theodred's knights only managed to inflict 2 wound counters resulting in them having to roll on the panic table.

WotR: Rohan take stock
The Rohan army was starting to dwindle, but was not out of the fight.

Erkenbrand's riders fared better and managed to kill the Mordor Troll and 4 Morannon, for only a 4 dead riders.

Thomas again won priority

I moved Erkenbrand back in line with Grimbold's Helmingas as Thomas moved forward. I kept the last two Rohan Riders in place in front of Gothmog to stall his advance and moved Theodred at the double around to the flank of Gothmog between the ruins and his formation. 

Craig held Gothmog as there was nowhere to run while his troll about faced and moved behind the Rohan Riders.

In the south the Morannon orcs advanced with the troll chieftain.

The last formation of Morannon moved on the far south towards the Rohan archers.

I forgot to cast any spells on both Gothmog and the Mordor Toll!


Thomas' archers now had a new target advancing on them a formation of 6 companies of new Morannon Orcs - he shot at them and killed 4.

Erkenbrand's Eored fired and killed another 2 Morannon.

Next Craig fired his catapult, but this only killed 1 of Theodred's Knights.

Theodred slammed into the side of Gothmog's 4 remaining formations with an unstoppable charge, the last company of Rohan riders charged his front.  

Then both Erkenbrand and Grimbold's Helmingas charged the Morannon formation along side the troll chieftain.

In return, Craig charged his troll into the rear of the Rohan riders who had charged Gothmog.

Craig sensing trouble called a Heroic fight, Theodred also called heroic fight and rolled a 4 to regain the lost might 'Ha, two can play that game Gothmog'!

Again, the Mordor troll stuck first, killed a Rohan rider and so the last company, now at half strength was removed.

Theodred and his knights, having an unstoppable charge, cavalry bonus and lances decimated Gothmog's formation down to the last 5 troops... if Craig thought Gothmog had survived to hit back he was wrong, I used another might point to change 1 dice roll and killed another Morannon was killed, the formation (and Gothmog) were removed... but wait, I called Heroic fight and so rolled to charge the Mordor Troll. This time the Mordor Troll did not survive and the Northern Morannon Flank was clear.

Unfortunately we ran out of time, we shook hands and called a draw, although we both felt that had the battle continued, Rohan would have been hard pressed to win and in fact, would probably have lost, but with so many units still left I settle on the draw - although with hindsight, the Theodred's Knights were now in prime position to attack the rear of the other Morannon Orcs and would have caused havoc, in addition we still had a formation of 6 Rohan Militia waiting to fight... who knows what the result would have been.

Final Thoughts

Rohan are no real match for the Morannon Battle host. My infantry lacked the strength, my archers need not have bothered and the cavalry simply couldn't easily find a side flank to charge until I had cleared a decent path, and all of the Rohan troops couldn’t withstand the counter troll charges and counter attacks from the Morannon - they were simply outclassed.

Craig has obviously been learning and kept his troops as best he could in a line to keep his flanks protected. Gothmog used a little might, Which Theodred countered, which Craig was surprised at, but he can't have it all his own way.


Man of the Match
LotR: Gandalf the White
For me it has to be Gandalf - he managed to kill Gothmog and kill loads of Morannon due to his blinding light before the charge; I am not sure that he is worth the 300 points and probably won’t use him again in a hurry, but had I remembered to use magic in all rounds the tides may have turned in Rohan’s favour, yet again Gothmog could have done better.

I hear a lot about Morannon Spam - this is a classic case, they are cheap, hard hitters with brilliant defence (especially in buildings) and they can field masses of troops at relatively low prices.
I have decided that actually Rohan shouldn’t take on the Morannon, we discussed this battle and it was clear that the ‘light’ Rohan force was not strong enough against the heavily armoured orcs.  If Craig fields the same force next week, then I will play my Gondor Osgiliath battle host (which is pretty much the same as the Morannon Battle Host but for Gondor) and see how he likes fighting them!

Perhaps I should have stayed loyal Mordor..?! I might even try LOTR SBG... I just need to find someone to play against, although I might be able to persuade Adrian as he used to play LOTR SBG quite a lot and has lots of figures stored away.

East Grinstead War Gaming Club

No comments:

Post a Comment