THE HALLOW GAME 6: OGRES

With a break in the humidity and inspiration behind me, I printed and painted a Moonfang for the Hallow over a couple days, tweaked out a new list and challenged my usual sparring partner to a match.

The Herd 2300
Forest Shamblers Horde
Forest Shamblers Horde
Forest Shamblers Horde
Tribal Spears Regiment
Tribal Spears Regiment
Tribal Spears Regiment
Tribal Spears Regiment
Centaur Bray Striders Troop
Centaur Bray Striders Troop
Tree Herder – War-Bow, Surge (8)
Tree Herder – Surge (8)
Druid – Conjurer’s Staff, Bane Chant (2), Heal (2)
Centaur Chief – Sabre-Toothed Hunting Cat
Moonfang

The concept is that Moony is basically the same cost as a flying Beast with more attaks and essentially as fast and as punchy, hypothetically more survivable (lower Nv but baked in reroll and regens), but also supports the army better by inspiring and providing vicious in combo-charges. It’s a really attractive package … that I might save for 1995 points. More on that later.

Ogres 2300
Siege Breakers Horde – Chalice of Wrath
Hunters Horde – Brew of Haste
Hunters Horde – Crocodog
Boomers Horde
Warrior Chariots Regiment
Berserker Braves Regiment
Berserker Braves Regiment
Red Goblin Rabble Horde
Red Goblin Scouts Troop
Red Goblin Blaster
Ogre Warlord – Crocodog
Nomagarok – Bane Chant (3), Heal (4), Lightning Bolt (4)
Boomer Sergeant – Inspiring Talisman
Kuzlo & Madfall – Enthral (5), Hex (3)

Following the US Masters, my buddy figured he’d stick with Ogres but change a few things up. Exit the Forces of Nature allies and gobbo regiments, enter Siegebreakers, gobbo horde and blaster. The Berzerker Bully also leveled up to a full Warlord, earning my undying respect. Still a great list, and without the allied stink on it 😛

We rolled up Control, a nice token-less experience. Herd scouted and Ogres took first. Here’s a shot of the Hallow at this point, looking arboreal and disorganized:

BATTLE

Herd 0: Scouting phase! Playing on almost all 6 feet of table 😤
Ogres 1: Generally out-moving and certainly out-shooting the Herd, the Ogres trundle forward to menace and prepare for violence to come. Kuzlo hexes the War Herder on the left, while Nomnom lightning bolts the central Centaurs for 2 damage. They aren’t wavered, but they sure are shook.
Herd 1: Tribal Spears are pushed to the front on the left to absorb charges, which is frankly part of their job description. The heavy Herd center tries to predict where the Ogre pincer is going to land, but those two Shambler hordes + Tree Herder are facing a LOT of aggression: Hunter horde, Siegebreaker horde, Braves regiment, Noms, as well as Blaster + Boomers on the hill and potentially another wave of Braves.
Off shot to the right is a Tribal Spears regiment and Moonfang, the latter of which has shoved hard up the flank and is currently outside of the right Hunters’ arc, but nimbled to face them.
Ogres 2: He counter chaffs my chaffing on the left, creating quite the gummy situation. The pressure on the center increases, with both Siegebreakers and Blaster threatening the Herder with a flank, but Hunters ready to zip in and shred the Shamblers. Brave regiments hit both the Herder and the right Shamblers. (You can see that I angled the Herder in such a way that Braves + Hunters couldn’t combo the left Shamblers.)
Right Hunters back up to keep Moonfang in their front. His 18″ charge also pushed the Boomers further forward on their hill than they might have wanted.
Token damage across the board: Boomer Sarge blasts 3 onto the left Tribal Spears, Nomnom bolts the Centaurs up to 3 (wavering them), Boomer horde blasts 2 damage into the left Shamblers in the woods, the Herder cops 2 from Braves, and the right Shamblers also take 2 from Braves.
Herd 2: I melt my clock trying to figure out the center, and ultimately flank the Braves with (hindered) Tribal Spears + Shamblers. If the Herder countered them it doesn’t really matter, the struggle with him was how to rotate to not take the Blaster in the flank. Having the Spears come in and overrun provided an answer, blocking the Siegebreakers from him for a turn. The other Braves copped a flank from more Tribal Spears, with Shamblers countering to the front. They died. On the right flank, more Tribal Spears take the Hunters’ retreat to move up to the other side of the woods; Moonfang nimbles around to continue threatening their flank.
The left flank also eats up my clock, but bad dice really ruin it. The Shamblers charge the Scouts on the hill, but the Centaurs don’t, instead limiting the Shambler slide and then backing up. This big brain play was kind of pointless, plus the Shamblers only do 6 damage and only waver the goblins. Speaking of puzzles, the Tribal Spears charge Kuzlo to clear a path for the War Herder, but the angle isn’t right to hit and lock the Warrior Chariots, so he just goes into the Boomer Sarge, with Centaur Chief in the flank. 7 damage later and the Ogre holds as well. (The Tribal Spears actually did great against Kuzlo, maybe even wavering him!)
Ogres 3: My opponent points out the Tribal Spears about to eat it, and indeed, they did receive Chariots in the flank. The Boomer Sarge counters the Centaur Chief but the Warlord is left out in the cold thanks to geometry. Pretty sure the other two units over there are wavered (not that that turns off Kuzlo’s not-Dread).
The Ogre hammers fall upon the Hallow, with Hunters hitting the Shamblers, Siegebreakers the flank of the poor Tribal Spears, and Blaster in the front of the Herder (possibly not hindered!) The Boomers are content to shoot green things in the face. On the right, the Hunters retreat to put Moonfang in their front again.
On the left, Tribal Spears evaporate and the Centaur Chief takes 3 damage. In the center, the left Shamblers return to the forest from whence they came, the Tribal Spears are pulped, the Herder takes 8 damage from the Blaster careening off the hill into it (the Druid had topped the big tree off the previous turn), and those Tribal Spears on the right take 6 damage from the Boomers, wavering. The center was always going to hurt 😦
Herd 3: I relive the frustration of those Scouts wavering on the left, having to send the Shamblers back into them. The War Herder hits the Boomer Sarge in the flank, as the Centaur Chieftain zips away to possibly hunt Nomnom. In retrospect he could have nimble-charged the Chariots, holding them down and giving me another turn to sort out my ongoing combats … The Centaurs on the left slink away to go hide in a table segment.

In the center, more Centaurs flank into the Hunters (hindered), Shamblers charge the Boomers (with bane chant and a quiet prayer to their verdant deities, as the Hunters are inbound to their flank!), and after a lot of thought, the Tree Herder has a swing at the Siegebreakers. He could have shot away into the Rabble horde, to bop away into the late game and consign the center to its death, but I figured holding the Siegebreakers for a turn (or two?) was better. With Noms heal behind them he wasn’t even likely to stick much damage on them :/

On the right, Moonfang once again moves into the Hunters’ flank.

The left is cleared up, but no miracles in the middle. Hunters take 2 damage, Siegebreakers 5 and Boomers 6, sadly no lucky wavers.
Ogres 4: Warlord + Chariots hit the War Herder, while Kuzlo charges to block his Shambler backup. The center breaks down as expected: Siegebreakers counter the Tree Herder, and Hunters flank the Shamblers with Boomers in the front. Right Hunters turn to face Moonfang, and the Rabble mob forward a few inches.
The Herder and Shamblers in the center disintegrate. The Herder and Shamblers to the left hold, with a shaky 9 damage in the War Herder’s case!
Herd 4: On the left, War Herder + Centaur Chief charge the Chariots, and Shamblers grudgingly counter Kuzlo. In the center, Centaurs rear the Boomers (!) and Tribal Spears front the Hunters (bane chanted) despite the ensnare :X On the right, Moonfang commits and charges the Hunters in the front, as his Tribal Spears backup breaks the treeline to get LOS for next turn.
Kuzlo routs and with 8 damage taken the Chariots waver! The center is even more triumphant, with both Boomers and Hunters dying to my chaff. Hot damn. Moonfang whiffs against ensnare tho, doing 0-2 damage.
Ogres 5: The Ogre Warlord flanks the War Herder, pushing him over. Elsewhere the Siegebreakers pressure the fragments of the Hallow center (yes, the Centaurs are facing away from the Siegebreakers). The Hunters countercharge Moonfang … and one round him O_O The odds on this continue to haunt me, but high five to those guys. Also global brutal is always surprisingly great.
Herd 5: The left Shamblers charge the Chariots, but once again the Centaur Chief abandons the left to menace Nomnom? Your duelist doesn’t work on him, dude! Help out the Shamblers! Anyway, the center Tribal Spears YOLO charge the Siegebreakers (bane chanted), in part because they were already past the 24″ line. If they were a little further back then walking up and holding in the forest might make more sense. Hell, it probably made more sense even here, but I wanted to try for Hot Dice. The hero Centaurs scamper off to the bottom right segment, and Moonfang’s Tribal Spears charge the Hunters, without their living legend being, well, alive. Oh, and the Centaurs in the upper left have turned to face the carnage …
Things go poorly. Tribal Spears do 4 damage to Hunters, get the Siegebreakers back to 7 (Noms has been healing / vicious-ing them when able), and while the Shamblers punch the Chariots up to 14 damage, I roll snake eyes. Bleh.
Ogres 6: Chariots flank the unlucky Shamblers. Siegebreakers counter the doomed Tribal Spears. Hunters counter the other doomed Tribal Spears.
Shambles die, center Tribal Spears die, but somehow the Hunters’ Spears just waver. Which is a lot like death, y’all 😐
Herd 6: The left Centaurs + Centaur Chief bound into the Chariots, finally killing them.
Ogres 7: Sweet hell, there’s more. Hunters end the Tribal Spears, securing +1 scenario point. Nom tries to zap the right Centaurs to deduct a point from the Hallow, but just wavers them.

Herd 7: I contemplate sending the Centaur Chief into the Warlord for some Even Hotter Dice, but even perfect dice couldn’t break the big guy, so I pass. With 5 points to 2, that’s an …

OGRE VICTORY

Soooo I felt like I played this pretty well, despite putting my central Tree Herder into a pretty tight spot there at the tip of the spear, with both hammers best suited to dropping him to either flank. Certainly used chaff better, or the right chaff in the right places, like Tribal Spears getting the real junk duties and Centaurs doing fast / opportunistic things. The rear charge from the Centaurs into Boomers was brilliant, if utterly unplanned 😀

I’m not real hot on adding Moonfang @ 2300 right now, I really like what I was learning using the flying Beast and all the angles she unlocks by being able to completely ignore intervening units. Moonfang is currently more interesting in the 1995 versions I’ve been messing with, where his support package is worth even more.

That’s me caught up on gaming, I expect my club will try to get together once before we hit Crossroads GT in late September. I know I could use more Herd / KOW practice!

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