As events have slowly starting to return the Lazy Pirate, Mr. Steve Evans, and I have been keeping an eye out for any reasonably local one-day events. Although I’m Bristol based, day trips to London and Surrey used to be a regular work thing, so a trip to Croydon for a day of gaming wasn’t a big ask.
You always know when you’re in London when the first drinks order you hear being made includes a Chai Latte! The venue was the back bar of a local café and worked out to be the perfect size for a small tournament with ten participants. The event wasn’t a scoring event, in the sense that results would contribute to season rankings, and the atmosphere was really friendly and relaxed, not that I find Kings of War tournaments to have edgy, unhealthily competitive atmospheres anyway.
The format of the day was simple enough 1,495 point armies and the new Clash of Kings book was in play, very exciting. There were three games, each with a very generous couple of hours to play which meant there was plenty of time for rolling dice and general chatter.
The gaming bit
I’m having a bit of a hiatus from rats, so I decided to take my Basileans. My list looked exactly like:
Gur Panther Troop
Ogre Palace Guard Horde with Boots of Striding
Mounted Paladin Regiment with Caterpillar Potion
Priest with Shroud of the Saint
Mounted High Paladin with Scythe of the Harvester
High Paladin on Dragon with Pipes of Terror
Game 1 against Elves, Pillage
One of the reasons I enjoy events is getting to play armies I’ve never played before. Admittedly, the list is now getting shorter but Elves were one of them. The army in question was a really nicely balanced mixed arms force centred around a horde of Palace Guard and horde of Spears.
His shooting certainly had an impact, almost taking off my Elohi in the first turn. Fortunately, for me, they survived and managed to get a second turn charge off against the mage with boomstick, ending his shooting career. This also carried them behind the enemy lines where they proceeded to make a general nuisance of themselves.
The Elohi and the Dragon between them created so much of a problem the Elf line eventually started to break up in an attempt to ward off multiple charges from different angles, which ultimately led to their downfall and a three, nil win to Basilea.
Game 2 against Dwarfs, Push
I’ve noticed I sometimes have a tendency to get over excited about certain things, and then not really put any thought into everything else that’s happening on the table.
In this game I had a great couple of opening turns, including getting my tokens into my opponent’s half and removing anything that could potentially reach them for the rest of the game. I think because I’m so hopeless at loot counter scenarios I got a little carried away with that achievement. That resulted in me thinking it was a good idea to put my dragon into the front of a Shield Breaker horde who were then successfully bane chanted. Yes, it went exactly how you would expect it to. To add insult to injury, my undamaged Elohi got taken out in the same turn as a result of a throwing mastiff causing four wounds, and two nerve checks each rolling out double sixes (this has led me to call the concept of karma into question, because I reminded the Dwarf player about the mastiffs).
This set back did get my focus back on the rest of the table, however. But by then it was too little too late. His Ironguard had the central token, and his other tokens were well away from the rest of my force. Had the game gone to seven turns there was a small chance my spear horde would have been able to get the regiment holding his other two tokens off the table, but it didn’t, so they couldn’t. The game ended six points to four, and a win for the Dwarfs.
Game 3 against Orcs, Control, Draw
God, Orc armies look so damn scary! There is something about those huge regiment and horde bases which just absolutely throw me every time. The main body of this army comprised of two hordes of Great Ax and two regiments of Morax which seemed to cover half the deployment zone, and just sat there making grrrr sounds (in my head).
The Orc player did a really good job of shutting down opportunities for my fliers to get into his ranks, and I had to delve deep into my box of Basilean shenanigans to find a way to start breaking his line down. Fortunately, my knights and mounted High Paladin were able to knock a hole through one of the Morax Regiments. Then a Great Ax charge that didn’t quite get rid of my Spears set them up for a flank charge by the dragon, and the tables started to turn
The game was incredibly closely fought and in the end we both ended up with a single point each from the areas we held and a mere five points between us on kills. Got to say I do love a good draw.
The first and only thing that needs to be said about yesterday is thank you, although that won’t stop me banging on for another few lines.
A massive thanks to Robert James for being a fab TO. The event ran really smoothly, the venue was lovely, and pre-event questions were answered promptly. What was also really in the spirit of the event was that, based on scores, I should have been playing Steve (my fellow Bristolian) in the last game, however Robert and the other players involved were all happy for us to play other, non-Bristolian, people. This was massively appreciated by both of us.
The prizes for the event were awesome with everyone taking a vanguard starter box away (first choice went to the strongest player, occasionally known as the one with the fewest points, in the spirit of the event). It also turns out the main Pannithor brewery is located somewhere near Croydon. So, a big thanks to Mantic and Robert for sorting those out.
A huge thanks has to go out to the lovely people I got to play. All were fab, friendly opponents and I hope to see you all at other events in the not too distant future.
And finally, a massive thanks to Reading Services for just existing, because it turns out it’s my favourite service station and I’m hoping there will be more Kings of War related reasons to visit in the near future.