Kings of War battle report: Basileans vs. Ogres

It seems like an age since I last put together one of these, but there has been a lot of general Brothermark related hobby going on and I decided it was time for a bit of a change. So, I took my Basileans out for a game of Plunder against a wandering band of Ogres.

One of my Kings of War goals for this year is to improve my game when it comes to loot counter-based objectives. Personally, I find these the hardest scenarios because not only do you have to pick them up, but you also have to hang onto them. Which is really difficult compared to just moving to a spot and staying there. One of the tips that I’ve started to take to heart, which I’m not sure where I’ve heard but I’m sure I’ve heard somewhere, with these sorts of games is to decide which counters you want to get, focus on them and ignore the ones you don’t want. So lets see if it works.

The Lists

Basileans

Priest with Shroud of the Saint

High Paladin, mounted

Julius

Phoenix

Gur Panther troop

Elohi regiment

Elohi horde with Brew of Strength

Orge Palace Guard horde with Sir Jesse’s Boots of Striding

Spear horde with Hammer of Measured Force

Mounted Paladins with Caterpillar Potion

Ogres

Boomer Sergeant

Army Standard (2)

Red Goblin Rabble regiments (2)

Boomer hordes (2)

Warrior hordes (2), 1 with crocodog

Siege Breakers hordes (2)

Red Goblin Blaster

Red Goblin Slasher

Set up and plan

For plunder a very important consideration is which token you choose to represent 2 points. I was really happy when I got to choose to place my 2 point counter second. Ogres are a really tough army to face with an elite army because you’re going to have to box clever to break it up and get those much needed flank/rear charges. That meant the worst thing that could have happened for me would be to have had the 2 point counters right next to each other with a bunch of angry ogres stood behind them. My opponent dropped the first 2 point counter second from the left, so I went for the far right in the hope that he would either stretch his line out and make it easier for me to break through, or he would ignore one flank and make it easy for me to collect the tokens on the forgotten flank. I would then focus on collecting those tokens on the forgotten flank and winning the centre.

The set up from left to right in detail.
Where it all began.

Turn one

My opponent won the roll off but let me go first, and the creep commenced. I was so focussed on keeping the troops in the centre and on the right out of range of the Boomers I didn’t think about the Paladins. In the Ogre turn, after a little shuffling one Boomer horde shot at my Paladins, but failed to break them. The only other viable target was my High Paladin who took shots from both the Blaster and Sergeant that either missed or failed to wound.

End of Basillean turn 1.

Turn two

Looking along my opponent’s lines there were a couple of opportunities that presented themselves for flank charges, and I decided to take them. The Gur Panther troop when into the flank of the Blaster and smashed it, whilst the Elohi Horde went into the side of the Boomers, destroying them before turning to face down the left side of the field. The rest of the movement was made to block up the ogres and preventing them starting any meaningful fights in the next turn. There was, however, one slight oversight which was the poor old Paladins who were accidentally left in charge range of the Slasher.

End of Basilean turn 2.

Not surprisingly the Slasher took the opportunity to have a chew at the Paladins, but failed to gnaw off anything important. The Siege Breakers facing the Elohi regiment made very quick work of them. The remaining Boomer horde took some shots at the panthers, and some poor measurement resulted in my Palace Guard facing a hindered warrior charge that I hadn’t expected.

End of Ogre turn 2.

Turn three

On the left flank things were starting to get a bit blocked as the ogres were doing a bit of redeployment. Given how blocked up they were I decided the best thing to do was let them get on with it and so, as Julius had been uninjured by the goblin regiment he had been fighting I decided to fly him into some clear space and let him keep an eye on the right flank, just in case the Boomers wanted something else to shoot at other than some defenceless cats.

The Palace Guard smashed the warriors into oblivion and trundled forward, whilst the panthers backed out of the woods so the Boomers couldn’t see them. The Elohi horde punched the Ogre standard bearer, before moving across to keep the Goblins blocking them from the bunched-up Ogres behind.

End of Basilean turn 3

In a very unwelcome twist, the Palace Guard overrun brought them into range of a flank of the last Boomer horde who managed to waver them and started to make my precious right flank feel a lot less safe than I had started to believe it was. In the centre the Ogre redeployment continued as they tried to clear some of the Basilean troops. The Paladins finally went down to a Slasher, and a Goblin regiment made a hindered charge against the Elohi that ended, well… predictably. The Ogres were now on the move and things were starting to look a bit scary.

End of Ogre turn 3

Turn 4

The High Paladin and Boomer Sergeant had been pummelling each other for a couple of turns, but his services were required elsewhere. So, the Paladin headed off to chaff up the remaining warrior horde and the Spearmen took over doing a huge amount of damage and then rolling a double 1 at a hideously bad time. Fortune favoured the angels and Julius managed a rear charge into the Boomers, combined with a flank from the panthers meant that particular threat was removed. Finally, the Elohi hit back at the Goblins managing 10 wounds and then wavering.

End of Basilean turn 4.

The tide was now changing towards the Ogres and a good round of combat would see the path cleared for them to run down the spears in the final couple of turns. Siege Breakers hit the Elohi and failed to break them due to a hindered charge, then the warriors failed to break the High Paladin. Things were not looking good, but there was still a chance.

End of Ogre turn 4.

Turn 5

The first combat saw the spears wipe out the troublesome Sergeant and allow the warriors to turn and face the oncoming threat. The Phoenix and Elohi charged the Siege Breakers and wiped them out, whilst Julius catapulted himself from the other side of the table to remove the wavered Goblin regiment.

End of Basilean turn 5.

At this point in the game both sides had counters worth three points and my spears held the central one point token, giving the Basileans the win, for the moment. The Ogres threw everything they had into setting up for the final showdown. The Slasher took down the Elohi and the Warriors destroyed the High Paladin, meanwhile the remaining ogre standard rear charged the Phoenix and managed a waver. Very unhelpful.

Turn 6

There were now decision to take. I had a choice of blocking the Slasher with Julius or trying to take the two point token off the Goblins. I decided to go for the token in case the ogre regiment destroyed the spears. I also made the spears drop their one point token so if they were destroyed the ogres would still have to move to get it. It was a gamble but it kind of worked!

Julius took the token off the Goblins to give the Basileans five points. The Ogres killed the Pheonix, meaning Julius would need to make some decisions next turn, if there was one, but fortunately the combo charge of ogres and Slasher was not enough to shift the spearmen.

Going into turn 7 there would be some decisions to make for the Basileans, but fortunately the dice decided the game was to end there with the Basileans up 5:1.

End of Ogre turn 6… and the sunsets on another game.

Final thoughts

It was a really fun game, and a great welcome back to the Basileans after giving them some shelf time. It always strikes me just how resilient they are, and they’re a world away from playing rats, or the Brothermark.

One of the best things about this game was making the decision to not focus on the tokens I wasn’t interested in. It seemed quite freeing to not worry so much about a third of the table. Of course, at some point that third of the table started to become very relevant to the game, but I felt in a good place when it did, and the plan helped me to prioritise the combats I needed to focus on. Call me a cynic, but I’m starting to think all these top players who say they don’t have a plan might just actually have a plan!

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Published by Eddie Bar

Fantasy storyteller, reader and wargamer.

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