Another Convic report

As demanded by previously mentioned nameless persons:

Siegfried von Carstein's Dread Legion

Siegfried von Carstein - Vampire Lord
Level 3 wizard
Great Weapon
Ring of the Night (5+ ward)
Walking Death (+1 CR)
Book of Arkhan (casts Vanhels)
Earthbind (MR(1))

Gergoth - Zombie Dragon

Zlad von Carstein - Vampire Thrall
Battle Standard
Sword of Might
Flayed Hauberk (1+ save)

Legion Militia - 20 Sylvanian Levy
Light armour, shields, spears
Standard bearer, musician

Legion Garrison - 20 Sylvanian Levy
Light armour, shields, spears
Standard bearer, musician

Night Stalkers - 5 Dire Wolves

Night Prowlers - 5 Dire Wolves

Night Gliders - 4 Fell Bats

Legion Elite - 25 Grave Guard
Heavy armour, shields
Full command group
War Banner

Legion Cavalry - 10 Drakenhof Templars
Barded Nightmares
Full command group
Banner of the Barrows (hit on a 3+)

Druellagh - Banshee

Round 1 – Wood Elves

Can't see the forest for the Treeman

Wood Elves are not my preferred opposition with Vampire Counts. Plenty of dangerously choppy troops, mostly immune to psychology and a terrifying habit of skidding around sideways at insane speeds make them a bit of a headache. Normally I could pretty much ignore the shooting, but this army had a bunch of Waywatchers that kept leering expectantly at my somewhat exposed Vampire Lord. On the plus side, at least there was only one Treeman.

Things got off to a fabulous start when I forgot to move a Banshee back behind a hedge and had it summarily executed by a gang of Wild Riders. The Vampire Lord flapped off to deal with them, which kept him busy for a couple of turns. On the other flank the Black Knights and the Vampire Thrall beat up some Dryads and then ran over some Treekin, but the Thrall didn't quite pursue off the table and had a short encounter of the fatal kind with a Waywatcher arrow. In the centre, the Grave Guard played arrow magnet for a while before helping some Zombies out with some Wardancers led by the Wood Elf general. The dancers eventually broke, but pranced off at speed and avoided getting chased down.

The Black Knights had more luck with another bunch of psychotic dancers, eventually running them down, but their infantry comrades in the centre didn't quite have as much luck. The general and his capering bodyguard held on until a few tons of angry Treeman flanked the Grave Guard's accompanying Zombies, causing massive carnage and wiping out both units. The Vampire flapped over and beat up a few Dryads, but it was too little too late.

Result: 7-13 loss


Round 2 – Bretonnians

Who said honour is undead?

Bretonnians can be bad news for pretty much anybody, but I figured most of my units were either tough or numerous enough to hold against the Bretonnian Lances. The Grail Knights were probably going to be an exception, though, and the challenge-happy Lord waving the Sword of Heroes would be really bad news for my Vampire and his Dragon. The Trebuchet perched on a hill could also be nasty for anything expensive, like Black Knights or Grave Guard (or the Dragon).

Things started off fairly well with the Trebuchet misfiring and missing a turn. Things got even worse for the rock lobber as a bunch of Bowmen that turned out to be just inside Terror range of the Zombie Dragon fled through it, causing it to run off the table. That certainly made my Lord feel better. In the centre the Bretonnian general and his friends charged some Fell Bats that turned out to be just in range, although they were thankfully too far off to be able to wheel to overrun into the Dragon. They instead ended up dancing with Dire Wolves for a turn before getting mobbed by Grave Guard, though the Bretonnian Lord cunningly switched units with his battle standard bearer beforehand.

On the far right, the Grail Knights faced a choice between the Zombie Dragon behind them and the Black Knights led by the Thrall in front. Unable to get out of range and sight of both, they decided to take on the Wights and trotted forward into charge range. They were largely correct as the elite undead cavalry managed to do embarrassingly little damage on the charge and stayed locked in a stalemate for pretty much the rest of the game. The Dragon flapped back over to the centre, still bathed in a not-so-gentle shower of arrows from the gang of Bowmen and Mounted Squires on the other flank, and ended up mauling the Bretonnian centre On one the flank the Black Knights finally managed to break and run the Grail Knights off, while on the other some fast-moving Zombies scared off the Mounted Squires who were holding an objective. Not too many Knights left in the end, and a result that was fairly hard for me to complain about.

Result: 20-0 win


Round 3 – Khornate Mortal Chaos

Combine harvesters are unnecessary when you have Khornate Knights

This army's main feature were a pair of Chaos Knight units doing their best 'wall of blenders' impressions, which would no doubt cause anything they charged endless amounts of pain. (Well, maybe not endless – it'd actually end fairly quickly when whatever they fought was reduced to a fine puree.) The rest of the army carried the speedy theme with Flesh Hounds, Furies, Chaos Hounds, an Exalted Daemon and a Chariot.

Determined to do everything possible to stop those Knights charging the unfortunately squashy Zombies in the front, the Vampire sent his canine shock troops out to bravely stand in their way and get trampled. The Dire Wolfs were duly converted into jelly and the Knights and Chariot ended up in a logjam in the centre of the table. On one flank the Fell Bats started a dogfight with the Furies, while on the other the Exalted Daemon and Flesh Hounds charged some Zombies and Grave Guard and vanished back to the Realm of Chaos.

Now that the Exalted Daemon and his nasty can-opening Blade of the Ether had left the building, the Black Knights on that flank suddenly got bolder and trampled a Spawn into the dirt, overrunning into the Chariot and a Chaos Knight unit. They fell apart in short order, thanks largely to the flail-wielding Aspiring Champion. In the centre the Zombies led by the Thrall finally showed themselves to the Chosen Knights, got charged and also started falling to bits depressingly quickly.

In the closing turns, the Grave Guard and the Giant started a stately waltz around each other, while the Vampire Lord avenged the Black Knights personally by taking out the Chaos Knights that had shredded them. The Thrall and his Zombies bit the dust, but not before the other Zombie unit (which had grown to some insane size by this point – Sylvanian armies really can summon) managed to flank them. With only one Knight able to fight, the Chaotic horsemen broke and fled. They rallied at the table edge but met the same fate as their brethren when the Dragon showed up and minced their Champion.

Apart from the Black Knights I hadn't lost anything too valuable, so this game ended well for me.

Result: 15-5 win


Round 4 – Undivided Beasts of Chaos

Move over, Biggles

A very balanced Beasts army was my first opposition on day two. Notable features (from my point of view) were a chunky unit of Bestigor, a Giant and a Doombull waving a potentially unpleasant Slaughterer's Blade. Beastherds, some Centigors and other assorted Chaotic nasties were scampering around to support them.

Things started interestingly. The Doombull and his Bestigor pals used an irresistible Wild Call to charge into my Black Knights, tearing them into tiny bits. That was bad. We then discovered that the Bestigor couldn't overrun because the Doombull was too busy snacking on Wight remnants and were duly flanked by the Grave Guard and Thrall. That was good! I then miscast, rolled a rebound and allowed a Beastherd led by the BSB to flank the Grave Guard with another Wild Call. That was bad.

The Grave Guard held on bravely for a few turns, but some feeble rolling and a bunch of angry Beastmen characters meant they fell apart pretty fast. The Vampire Lord, after having clobbered a Chariot, decided to be heroic and fly to their rescue with a timely Vanhel's Danse Macabre. He and his steed flanked the Bestigor and did seven wounds, which caused a pretty massive swing in combat resolution. He still managed to lose combat by two.

On the plus side (sort of), the Grave Guard finally fell apart and so the flanking Beastherd was no longer in the same combat, meaning there were less of those inconvenient ranks around. On the minus side, the Doombull shouldered his way to the front and challenged the Vampire Lord. I was sort of worried about that, but with incredible vampiric arrogance the Lord hacked the Doombull apart by himself, leaving the Dragon to nibble at the remnants for overkill. Even with a chariot showing up in the dragon's rear, this was enough to win the combat and break the Bestigor the turn after, leaving the looming Giant in the dust. The Dragon then showed up at the last minute to bail out some Zombies stuck in combat with another Beastherd before pulling a loop-the-loop and flying off into the sunset.

Losing the Wights meant I gave up a fair chunk of points, but this was compensated for by having my Vampire kill the enemy general in face-to-face combat – I'd played the Personal Vendetta card, so the Chaotic beast was worth triple points. The Vampire Lord and his trusty aerial steed had really performed better than I had any right to expect in this game, leading to me walking off with quite a lot of points.

Result: 16-4 win


Round 5 – Slaanesh Mortal Chaos

Dateline Chaos Wastes: Biggles pretender shot down in flames

Slaanesh Chaos can be a bit bothersome for Undead, but at least there wasn't any of the incredibly nasty Slaanesh magic around. There was a rather angry-looking Chaos Lord riding a Dragon considerably more dangerous than mine, though, as well was a painful-looking Chosen Chosen Knight unit stuffed full of Exalted Champions.

Things got off to a bad start when some Furies turned out to be just in range of my Banshee, which was lurking on anti-Dragon duty. It got worse when some carelessly positioned Dire Wolves allowed a unit of Marauder Horsemen to overrun into my Dragon, pinning it in place. The Vampire Lord cunningly made sure to leave a few alive to flee, but promptly rolled some feeble distance and didn't escape back over his own lines. A pair of Chariots charged in and flattened the Dragon, which wasn't great, but at least the Vampire was now back up to S7 and could smack both of them to bits in one fell swoop. Unfortunately he screwed it up and totally missed one, leaving him stuck in combat during his turn when he could have been hightailing it into a nice big Zombie unit. Despite some attempted trickery with screening Dire Wolves, the Vampire and Zombies got mobbed by a Dragon and an Exalted Champion, lost combat by tons and had the Vampire explode in a shower of dust.

As can be imagined, things went downhill fairly fast after this. The Grave Guard and Black Knights attempted to claw some points back by savaging the Chosen Knight unit, but rolled abysmally and only succeeded in disintegrating in various exciting ways. (The Vampire Thrall failing three 3+ saves and taking seven wounds in a challenge was a particularly good effort.)

All that was left was a unit of Zombies too big to crumble significantly, so I didn't do too well in this one. After some prompting from my opponent we did add the scores up and I managed to keep it from being a total 20-0 massacre, but this wasn't exactly my best result.

Result: 1-19 loss


Round 6 – Daemonic Legion

Who needs plans when you have magic and dice?

Daemonic Legions can really be a headache for anybody, especially when loaded up on lethally nasty daemonic heavy cavalry. This army had more variety than usual, which was nice – pretty much one of everything that wasn't Tzeentch (and that was only due to a lack of points). The things to fear in the list were the Plagueriders and the Bloodcrushers led by a Herald on a Juggernaut, with a Shadow magic-toting Daemon Prince and some Slaanesh units moving at close to light speed being close seconds.

At this point both of us were a bit tired and in no mood for much subtlety, so both armies deployed fairly straightforwardly and lunged at each other. The Daemon Prince dumped a fair chunk of the Grave Guard into oblivion with a Pit of Shades before charging into them with Unseen Lurker, supporting a unit of Flesh Hounds. Unfortunately he ran out of steam after the first round and exploded due to a terrible Instability test. The diverting Dire Wolves (ok, so maybe there was some subtlety) got in the way of the Bloodcrushers, leading to them being flanked by Zombies, while the Black Knights and the Thrall rode a wave of horrifically good rolling straight through a unit of Plagueriders.

The fiendish rolling continued, with Vampire and his Dragon jumping behind the enemy lines and systematically demolishing most of the Daemon infantry. On the flank, the Slaanesh elements mobbed one Zombie unit and flanked the other, aiding of the Bloodcrushers. Even the practically unlimited Zombies pouring out of the nearby grave markers couldn't hold up to the Daemonettes' claws, and one unit finally crumbled. Unfortunately this wasn't enough to stem the tide, as the Vampire Lord and the Black Knights were taking care of the Bloodcrushers and Pleasureseekers. The game ended with the Knights steamrolling the last Daemonettes, wiping out the Daemons while not giving up many Undead victory points.

Result: 20-0 win


Final Result

79/120 battle points

I was pretty happy with how I went points-wise, and was pleased (and very surprised) to get the 3rd place Generalship award (very classy trophy). I wasn't sure how the Zombie Dragon would go, but except for a couple of lacklustre games I was quite impressed with it – I'll have to try this list out again sometime. Overall Convic was a very well-run tournament with a bunch of very sporting players, and I think I'll be definitely try and go again next year.

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