maandag 14 januari 2019

            Doubles Tournament The Hague 2019

Last weekend it was my first time to participate in a tournament in the Games Workshop The Hague.
I went together with my trusted doubles companion Ronny Kost, whom i've played several doubles tournaments with in the last years. 
It was a three round tournament of 1000 points (500 each) and except the good vs evil no limitation on allies with respect to Tolkien lore. That being said we chose to honour the good old professor and chose double Mordor (okay okay, we also like double fellbeasts).
Ronny fielded Khamul on fellbeast, The Mouth of Sauron (MoS), some Morgul Knights and Black Numenoreans supported by Mordor orcs. And i took my fully beefed up (3/20/3) Witch King of Angmar (WIKI) on fellbeast with the Crown of Morgul with me together with Orgh (Morannon captain) and 24 Morannon orcs with a banner.

Travelling by train is to a tournament is always relaxed.

There where some familliar faces in the crowd of 8 teams but i was pleased we came across some new ones in the first round. Always nice to meet new opponents!

Father and son: Jelle and Pieter.

Jelle and Pieter fielded the dwarven army of Thror in coalition with Minas Tirith.
Thror, (young) Thorin Oakenshield, bearded dwarves, Boromir, knights of Minas Tirith (KoMT) and avenger bolt thrower and warriors of Minas Tirith where thrown at us.

The scenario of the first round was "Domination" (capturing and controlling five objectives).

The set up with both parties controlling their objectives, Mordor controlling the central one.

In the centre Thror clashed with the Morannons, who where supported by Khamul. On the right flank the KoMT rushed to either surround the Mordor main force or to capture objective on the right but they met the WIKI in their path. 
One KoMT sneakely approached said objective via a detour around a building.

On the left Thorin visited the MoS and his jolly black Numenoreans.

After dealing with the opponent's cavalry for a bit, the WIKI let his fellbeast eat the sneaky KoMT.

Khamul wreaked havoc among the lines of Thror and the Morgul Knights stopped the remaining KoMT with a little Morannon orc help.

Thorin and the MoS kept eachother in gridlock during the entire match.

Pieter's Avenger bolt thrower decimated my Morannons and Ronny's black Numenoreans.

After much needed help in the centre Khamul and the WIKI flew to the right flank of our opponents to kill the guardians of the enemy objective and claim it.

The MoS came to aid the badly battered Morannon force and helped secure the central objective.

Khamul and the WIKI did the same with the enemy objective on the right.

In the end Mordor won a 7-2 victory.
It was a nice, easy going, match versus the amazingly sportsmanlike Pieter and Jelle.

Silly guys... Team Mordor.

Through the Great Brittish Hobbit League's (GBHL) secret Santa swap by Sebastiaan Raats i came in the posession of these lovely dice with the Tengwar "6" on the proper side due to the generosity of Jim Ryden from Sweden. Well, Jim... they seem to work fine!

In the second round of the tournament the proverbial defeacation hitted the fan when we met the brothers Sam and Faan, who won the first round with a whopping 19-2 victory and are known for quite some years to be some of the Netherands top players.
Hmm, a walk in the park...
They brought with them a coalition of forces the called "Elrond's folly": an alternative Fellowship consisting Elessar, king of Gondor, Glorfindel, the Elven Twins, Theodred and then some...
With TWENTYONE might (and one free/turn due to Aragorn/Elessar) they had some to burn.
Did i mention a walk in the park?

Right, the scenario this round was "Hold ground" (securing the central objective with more forces than your opponent).
Ronny and i had some setbacks with deployment. Due to the "Maelstrom of battle" rule of the scenario our warbands where not really deployed as we wanted them to and some came late to the battle.

Our esteemed opponents didn't seem to have that challenge.

Well then.

Our somewhat less streamlined deployment with an entire flank still enjoying some tea i reckon.

With the objective in the central temple (to make it more of a challenge) the match developed in a rather beautiful tactical dance with the two sides maneuvering their armies.

Both sides being cautious.

After five or six turns melee finally started with the heroes of Sam and Faan clashing into our right flank. Elessar/Aragorn was sapped of his will earlier and was kept in a supporting role after black darts on his horse failed killing it.

Faan and Sam.

We moved our big hitters a-symmetrical.

Glorfindel came to aid the flank being eaten by fellbeasts.

Glorfindel was being entertained by Orgh as Khamul flew on and the WIKI was mopping up forces contesting the temple.

On our right flank our army was being destroyed and Boromir was threatening to flank us. The enemy heroes where stopped by all means necesarry.

While most of our army was overrun by heroes the temple was somewhat secured.

Time was of an essence when we actually hold ground against the heroes unslaught and won the match 3-0.

It was a very interesting, tactically challenging match in wich both Ronny's conservative, defensive, play at first followed by my gung-ho style paid off. 
And although it was quite tense we even managed to keep it light hearted with lots of sillyness. Chapeau, opponents!

Our tournament organiser and judge, Julian.

After all this gaming violence it was time to present your armies for the best painted army award (BPA).
I really am photographically challenged so please bear with me as i try to show you the armies with my limited skills. Oh and i forgot some armies too, my apologies...

BPA contestants:

Well then, after the break it was time for the finale. With two solid victories we where competing for winning the tournament.
Our next opponents where Larry and Neill: Larry, a relatively new star in the competitive ME-SBG scene here in the Netherlands who did quite well last year in the league and Neill, a familliar face from the Rotterdam White Scars.
For the third time today we faced some Minas Tirith: Ingold, Knight of the White Tower and Madril, another Avenger bolt thrower and as allies Larry fielded his infamous Iron Hills wi th his dreaded Iron Hills Ballistae (the ultimate bane for fellbeasts) paired with Dain on his boar with goatriders.

The scenario was "Fog of War", an interesting scenario with much chance on deceiting eachother since you have to secretly proclaim objectives (one piece of scenery to claim, one hero to kill and one of your own heroes to keep alive).
We chose a portal to claim, the Knight of the White Tower (KotWT) to kill and the MoS to keep safe.

Larry and Neill.

Compact versus stretched lines.

In the first two turns the much feared happened, both fellbeast got annihilated by dead on shots of the ballistae also killing Khamul. The WIKI managed to wound the KotWT and hid in a ruined building.
On the right flank we steamrolled as fast as we could to the portal objective while trying to mask this by trying to claim the nearby woods.
On the left the MoS was waiting for Dain and his goatriders.

Our opponents waited and kept shooting and only Ingold and Dain moved towards us.

Unexpectedly this round was a wee bit shorter and during the last 30 minutes we played accordingly.
Having scored a kill on the KotWT with the WIKI and almost having secured our scenery objective with the designated hero to be saved (although the ballistae kept on firing) we felt safe enough to start camping while on the left flank the MoS contested some scenery pieces with his black Numenoreans.

This blurry picture (sorry...) depicts Dain and his goatriding friends trying to capture their objective.

In the end it seemed that Larry and Neill succeeded to kill their hero target (Khamul) but failed to secure their scenery objective. We reached all three of our goals and so the score was 9-2 for Mordor.

The finalegame could have beeen more epic if we had have gotten more time but it was a great game with enough room for some giggles.

Time for the award ceremonies!

Winner of the sportsmanship award was Pieter.

BPA was awarded to these four gentlemen who had a tie.

And with three solid victories...

Ronny and i won the tournament!

Together with Ronny i had a blast, three fun games all different in their challenges and difficulties and all in good gentlemanlike atmosphere. What more can you ask for?

I would like to thank Ronny Kost, with who it's a true pleasure to team up with. Also big thanks to our opponents and all players who came to the GW The Hague, Julian Toussaint for organising and judging and the Games Workshop The Hague for having us.

maandag 12 november 2018

Chronicles of Beleriand Antwerp II

This weekend i went to Antwerp for the 2nd edition of the Chronicles of Beleriand tournament at the Outpost Antwerp. Last year i managed to win the first edition but this time i hadn't played in a wee while and it was my first encounter with the new MESBG rules (work, family and study had nothing to do with that offcourse). This meant i was expecting to be tabled three times.
I fielded my trusty Angmar, in spite of magic being nerfed in the new edition of the game i went all out on magic.

In this 700 point tournament i fielded the Witch King of Angmar (WiKi), a Shade, 2 Barrow wights, Buhrduhr, 1 spectre and 25 orcses.

The first game we played a version of the Capture & Control scenario called "Dagor Aglareb" (Philippe Anne, the organiser has a strong Silmarillion theme in place, hence the tournament name etc.). 5 objectives had to be captured and kept.
My opponent was the ever charming Valerie Lever with her Mirkwood army fielding Thranduil on elk, Legolas on horse, Tauriel and a mix of woodelves and palace guards.



Legolas, prince of Mirkwood meets Illuvatar very quickly in the game.

Thranduil on his steed clashes into the lines of Angmar.

To be paralysed and surrounded.

The WiKi threatens an elven objective but is effectively kept busey there .

Flanking woodelves are trying to contest an Angmar objective.

In the centre Thrandui falls and one by one the elves are meeting their demise.

Buhrduhr threatens Tauriel.

As the WiKi comes to aid in the centre.

The flanking attempt fails.

As Tauriel was delt with and 4 objectives secured the WiKi contest the 5th one.

The game ends in a 10-0 mayor victory for Angmar.

Valerie and myself.

It was a good game, we had some laughs and it was obvious paralyse is a potential pain in the behind.

Lunchbreak and my dear wife was so sweet to make me a bentobox.


The second game was versus Jasper Lohrman and his Gundabad force with Azog the defiler on his white warg, a Gundabad troll, gundabad orcs and goblin mercenaries.
We played "Dagor Bragolach", better known as Fog of War. 
Several objective kept secret from oneanother in wich the goblin mercs would have a nice advantage.

Jasper, my worthy opponent.

The set-up and first moves. Goblin mercs pop up in the woods on my left flank and the WiKi threatens the small group with the gundabad captain (one of my objectives).

Said captain is hurled towards the Angmar lines to be meeting his doom.

The armies clash and Azog resists a paralyse attack using all his will and might and to my horror the WiKi is sain by a ferocious Gundabad berserker.

Azog is paralysed at last but my Barrow wights used all their will to do so.

The central battle could still swing both ways as the gundabads where tougher than my orcs. The shade and banner leveled that a bit.

Alas for Angmar, Azog recovered quickly from his slumber and the white warg charged into my ranks.

This Gundabad troll was spectred all around the place and didn't see any action.

As my army was slaughtered my hero to be kept alive (one of the objectives) reached the forest that also was an objective of mine.
The army of Angmar was broken, so things looked bleak.

Jasper managed to get the white warg into said forest and contested my objective.
Well played because that was the difference between a tie and a victory for Gundabad!
Jasper won 12-7, well deserved i might add.

Great game and we tend to be silly from time to time.

Winning the tournament wasn't possible anymore i reckoned. But hey i was expecting worse before attending and due to my loss i would avoid the two dreaded Iron Hills armies of Sebastiaan Raats and Larry Snellink (who was my fellow Dutchie and traveling mate) with their dwarven ballista's (they are fellbeast killers).

So with a positive mindset i entered the 3rd and final round of the tournament where i met Mertijn Moeyersons, a player re-entering our glorious hobby after a 4 year break..
Mertijn was general of Mordor fielding an (usurper) WiKi on felbeast, the Dark Marshall on horseback, a shaman and a selection of Black Numenorians and Morannon orcs.

A WiKi vs (usurper) WiKi face-off!

The scenario we played was "The fall of Fingolfin", a true Contest of Champions.
Who's WiKi would make the most kills?

Mertijn with his nicely painted army and matching t-shirt.

But first (thirst?) there was Belgian beer!

The epic and and Tolkienwise very correct *cough* battle deployment.

After a somewhat dissapointing Sap Will and Paralyse attempt on the Mordor WiKi he charged into my WiKi and i got surrounded.

My Angmar WiKi won and returned the favor.
All except 1 will was put into paralysing attempts by both barrow wights together with another sap will.

Mertijn's WiKi got away with only a few will points left when this little bugger cast a paralyse with his last will point.
The Mordor WiKi was paralysed and fell of his fellbeast!

My leader sapped the other armies leader to death and collected some kills to gain a mayor victory.

A victory that was a 10-0 one. A tense but relatively short game that was.

After all that winner bought beers and there was much rejoicement.

Time for the award ceremony.
Philippe, the tournament organiser presented the winners and runners up.

Mertijn won the Best Painted Competition with the Mordor army seen above.
I forgot to take photo's of all the armies sadly, sorry about that.
Mertijn, well done!

3rd place was won by Sebastiaan Raats.

2nd place by your's truly.

And Jasper Lohrman won the tournament!

Congratioulations to Jasper and Mertijn!
 I would like to thank my nice opponents, had a great time.
Also a big thank you to Philipppe Anne for organising the tournament.

When you're in Belgium you drink beer and eat fries (did i mention i like food and drinks?).
Larry and me went to a good "Frituur" recommended by Sebastiaan. Good it was and wow what a portion......

            Doubles Tournament The Hague 2019 Last weekend it was my first time to participate in a tournament in the Games Workshop Th...