Gentle readers! I’m sorry to keep you waiting for that sweet, sweet Dead of Winter GT report you were promised a month ago. With the Pilgrimage GT this weekend (!), I find I’m once again up against the wall on my writing duties and well behind on batreps. To that end, I’m going to do full day recaps for this event but hopefully maintain some of the gravitas of what turned out to be a much more successful run than I expected going in.

Dead of Winter was a two day, 2150 point event held here in Albany, NY from January 29-30, 2023, and put on by my very own club, The Shambling Horde. For the second year of this tournament, our club overlords set an added comp twist that no triplicates were allowed, including units of the same size. While you could take 2x Ogre Warrior regiments and 1x Ogre Warrior horde, you couldn’t take 3x Ogre Warrior regiments, for example. I’m not a huge fan of this restriction, as I don’t find triples of units to be bad, but I do think raising it to ban unit quadruplets is cool and good and curtails spam in a more meaningful way, especially when combined with 1995+X style points comp. Regardless, I did appreciate being forced into a little more variety than I would usually run, and was very happy where my list landed. Also note that we used Blackjack Scoring (aka best scoring).

Herd 2150

Lycan Horde – Brew of Strength
Guardian Brute Horde
Guardian Brute Horde
Minotaur Chariot Regiment – The Stampede [1]
Tribal Warrior Horde – Brew of Sharpness
Tribal Warrior Regiment
Tribal Warrior Regiment
Centaur Bray Striders Troop
Centaur Bray Striders Troop
Lycan Alpha
Great Chieftain – Horn of the Great Migration [1]
Centaur Chieftain
Druid – Bane Chant (2), Heal (2)
13 (24)

I’ve talked about the list in other reports but here it is one more time! The Horn did make it into the final list, as a cool piece of tech that gives a useful aura when you want to go fast and occasionally puts dread onto somebody who isn’t being punched by Brutes. The list is basically a bunch of hammers with friends that either get them where they want to be or take care of the scenario so the hammers can focus on smashing face.


Orcs 2150

Fight Wagons Legion – Brew of Strength
Greatax Horde – Orcish Skullpole, Boots of Striding
Youngax Horde – Orcish Skullpole
Gore Riders Regiment – Staying Stone
Morax Regiment – Orcish Skullpole
Morax Regiment – Orcish Skullpole
Morax Troop
Morax Troop
War Drum
War Drum
Troll Bruiser – Orb of Towering Presence
Morax Mansplitter – Gnome-Glass Shield
Krudger – Gakamak’s Bloody Banner [1]
Krusher on Gore – Blade of Slashing
14 (27)

That’s right, we’re kicking off the tournament with Skullface! He’s brought his personal battlewagon, as many Morax as the comp allowed, a Greatax horde to hold the line, Youngax to be cheap unit strength, and support staff aplenty. My Herd are very punchy, but would I be able to out punch this Orcish warmachine??

The first round is Invade – you may notice that the scenarios are designed to tell a story of our armies moving into enemy territory, taking their stuff, fighting their way out, etc. The Herd went first, probably by choice given that it’s invade.


Battlelines! I don’t have a strong plan for the Youngax and US2 Troll Bruiser pushing down the right flank, but I assign some Brutes to keep them occupied. On the whole, sending just the Brutes that way is a mistake, I should have used them to break the center harder and then spin to face the US6 worth of invaders late game. Spoilers.

Turn 1: The Hallow moves up, flexing its charge ranges across the board. The Orcs present a unified front across the line, with the exception of the Gore Riders jamming the Stampede on the left and the Krusher venturing out on the right. First blood goes to the Mansplitter, who picks up his ONE throwing axe then hits and wounds a Tribal Warrior. Game on.

Herd 2: I know from experience that the Greatax need to be killed in one shot, so Lycans and Brutes both pound into them. The Stampede should easily kill the Gore Riders, especially with a little nudge from the Centaur Chief, and the Tribal Warrior horde can very likely one round some Morax, then take the retaliation on the chin. The rest of the Orc line is held in place to buy time.

After a flurry of dice, the Greatax are indeed dismembered, but the Gore Riders hold on snake eyes and the Morax regiment takes 14 damage and may have snaked as well. I try my best to shake it off but the momentum is already slipping.

Orcs 2: Thrilled to be fighting already, the Orcs counter-charge across the line, with both Morax regiments hitting the Tribal Warrior horde. A War Drum blocks the Lycan horde as Orc individuals lend their axes to the fights. The saddest note, however, was the Gore Riders charging the Centaur Chief and overrunning into the Stampede. I hate when I do this 😦

Thankfully it’s all up from there, with the Tribal Warriors holding on 13 damage and the units keeping the Morax troops back only wavering. The Centaurs thrown into the Fight Wagon legion do indeed die tho. RIP to those heroes.

Herd 3: The Hallow plunges its sharpened wooden appendage deeper into the Orcs this turn, as Brutes flank Morax on the left and Tribal Warriors flank more Morax on the right, with a lot of counter-charging happening elsewhere. In a bit of a throwaway move, the Great Chieftain charges the Krudger with the bloody banner, but amazingly he one-rounds him! This removes the inspiring from the left flank, leading to the death of the Gore Riders and War Drum. All the Morax except for the troop with Centaurs in their face are torn apart as well.

You can see I don’t know what to do about the right flank. The Brutes once again deign to charge, not trusting that they can one round the horde or the troll, but knowing they’ll die in return, thanks to either unit getting a flank (and no inspiring to be had!)

Orcs 3: The Fight Wagon careens into the Lycan horde lurking in the pond, crushing it despite the negative to hit. It turns to face the Stampede, letting the Brutes have its flank. The surviving Morax blend the Centaurs at last and prepare to die. On the right, the Youngax take the hindered charge into the stranded Brutes, with Troll Bruiser in the front and Krusher in the back. The green hammer wavers but holds.

Herd 4: The Fight Wagon is dismantled by the Stampede and Brutes on the left, and on the right the other Brutes counter-charge the Troll Bruiser and manage to one round him through weight of dice. In the center, the Tribal Warrior horde chooses to counter-charge the Mansplitter rather than dropping the War Drum (??), but at least they kill the punchy hero. This leaves a Tribal Warrior regiment and Lycan Alpha to deal with the wounded Morax – a shocking 2 damage later and the troop of blenders is totally fine. Yikes.

Orcs 4: Those Morax counter-charge and blend the Tribal Warrior regiment (and their US3), while the Krusher and Youngax finish off the right Brutes. The War Drum tries to clean up the mangled Tribal Warrior horde but can’t land a hit.

Turn 5: The Tribal Warrior horde shreds the War Drum and the Lycan Alpha savages the Morax troop. For the Orcs, the Youngax face their oppressors and the Krusher either launches himself into the Tribal Warriors horde, fails to hit, and is killed next turn, or readies himself this turn and has a go in Turn 6. Regardless, this is a resounding …


What a smashfest! Slugging it out with Skullface is always a pleasure, and this match was probably destined to come down to whoever hit first and hardest. Snake eyes notwithstanding.


Sylvan Kin 2150

Forest Shamblers Horde
Sylvan Gladestalkers Regiment
Sylvan Gladestalkers Regiment
Silverbreeze Cavalry Regiment
Silverbreeze Cavalry Regiment
Hunters of the Wild Regiment
Hunters of the Wild Regiment
Greater Air Elemental
Greater Air Elemental
Tree Herder – Wiltfather [1]; Surge (8)
Nimue Waydancer [1] – Fireball (10), Wind Blast (5), Heal (4), Surge (4)
Elven Archmage – Inspiring Talisman; Surge (8), Bane Chant (2)
12 (22)

After dunking Orcs, I’m catapulted to Table 2 to face off against Sylvan Kin and my first two Greater Air Elementals. This also may be the first time I’ve ever faced Sylvan Kin? Thankfully no matter what happens, Darek is exceedingly nice and has a very pretty Warhammer army that is satisfyingly FMC.

The second round is Plunder (2 point tokens in green, 1 pointers in black). Sylvan Kin take the first turn, because shooting.


Battlelines! Scouting phase! The Sylvan Kin inch forward, mostly just putting Gladestalkers into range.

Turn 1: The Sylvan Kin deign to move much, knowing I’m headed to them. Some Tribal Warriors cop 3 damage from arrows. In return, the Hallow punches it forward, grabbing a 1 point token on the left and 2 pointer on the right. I’m a little freaked out by the Greater Air Elementals but I give them obvious charges as bait and prepare some redundancy if they get squirrely.

Sylvan Kin 2: Let’s just start with the boogeymen. The left Greater Air hops the wood and is surged 5″ into the Lycan Alpha by the Archmage, bopping her for 6 damage and wavering the beast. Nice! The right Greater Air plows directly into the 2 token Tribal Warrior regiment, doing them 6 damage (5 + Nimue’s cloak of death). Also on the right, Silverbreeze decide to charge the Lycan Horde, doing a respectable 7 damage (6 + cloak). Before all this happened, shooting drops the Centaurs with the loot and puts 2 damage on the Stampede. Not so bad.

Herd 2: Limited by my huge base size, I end up punching the Stampede and Tribal Warrior horde into the left Hunters of the Wild regiment, shattering it and splitting the Sylvan Kin line. The left Greater Air holds from a Tribal Warrior flank (who grab a token in the process), while the right GAE is disintegrated by Brutes (and the 2 token Tribal Warriors). The right Silverbreeze take 10 damage from the Lycan horde, but sadly hold tight. Brutes in the center prepare to deal with the Forest Shamblers, who are chaffed up with Centaurs.

Sylvan Kin 3: Battle is joined across the board!

The Lycan Alpha is driven off thanks to a Silverbreeze flank and a distressing number of waver tokens are handed out – the Tribal Warrior horde, Lycan Horde and right Brutes all waver under a storm of very good Kin rolling.

Herd 3: The Hallow retaliates in kind. Plucky Tribal Warrior regiments remove the Greater Air on the left and the Silverbreeze on the right, while Brutes thunder down the center and rout the Forest Shamblers in one go, and the Stampede rolls out of its mind and one-rounds the Gladestalkers who bloodied it last turn. A sad trombone can be heard in the distance, however, when the other Brutes fail to dunk the Hunters of the Wild scrabbling at them.

Sylvan Kin 4: The Tribal Warrior horde is smashed down by the Wiltfather (and Gladestalkers), as the mangled Brutes on the right are routed by the Hunters of the Wild. Darek spends some time thinking about the Tribal Warriors vs Silverbreeze situation in the bottom left and decides to trust in his shooting dice. This pays off as the Tribal Warriors (with token) are wavered! The right Tribal Warriors (with 2 point token) are also wavered this turn, thanks to Nimue’s fireball.

Herd 4: The Stampede revs up and one-rounds its second regiment of Gladestalkers (!), and the Hunters of the Wild on the right are blended by the Lycan horde. In the center, the Brutes swing into the Wiltfather for 7 damage, after a failed bane chant. Fighting Wiltdad is a marathon not a race, ok? Nimue is also charged and disordered by the Centaur Chief.

Sylvan Kin 5: The Silverbreeze gallop up from the bottom left to rear charge the Stampede, wavering it on 15 damage! The Wiltfather does a perfect 11 damage to the Brutes (10 + cloak)! Nimue tries to drive off the Tribal Warriors on the right but can’t land a wound (but does land her cloak)!

Herd 5: The Brutes drop the Wiltfather, moments before the Stampede turns and slams 7 damage into the Silverbreeze, I believe wavering them. Nimue is sandwiched between Tribal Warriors and Centaur Chief but survives. The Lycan horde grabs a 1 point token and Centaurs scoop up the 2 pointer in the center, with left Tribal Warriors headed for the final token.

Turn 6: Nimue swings at the token-laden Tribal Warriors on the right once again, damaging them this time but rolling snake eyes for the break (13 damage total)! Nimue survives the retaliation, but the Silverbreeze get Stampeded. I grab all the tokens and prepare the Lycan to scoop up the Tribal Warriors’ if Nimue goes ham on them in Turn 7, but the game ends here with a very decisive …


What a game! I was certainly helped by Darek committing his Greater Airs early and in places I could easily respond to them, but then his dice rolls with low to no crushing/piercing attaks pulled him out time and again. Lots of back and forth kept the game more interesting than I thought it would be vs shooting and GAEs.


Forces of Nature 2150

Fire Elementals Horde – Brew of Sharpness
Scorchwings Horde – Brew of Haste
Earth Elementals Horde
Earth Elementals Horde
Water Elementals Regiment
Water Elementals Regiment
Greater Air Elemental
Greater Air Elemental
Tree Herder – Surge (8)
Gladewalker Druid – Crown of the Wizard King, Ring of Harmony; Surge (8), Heal (4)
Druid – Conjurer’s Staff; Surge (4), Bane Chant (2), Heal (2)
12 (20)

I’ve only played Corey three times, between him running Crossroads GT and living on the top tables at most events – so here we are at Table 1 😅 I had heard he was printing / painting a new army this winter, and obviously I should have expected Nature. Lots of great sculpts, bright colors, and a powerful toolbox of units. This is a scary list, tho also more tuned than the stereotypical Nature list using the formation (of which there was one at this GT). The anviliest of anvils, an ultra hammer, a Sp 11 hyper flexible flying scoring shooting killing unit, and amazing thicc chaff join the pure value of two GAEs, a Tree Herder, Ringwalker, and budget Druid. Lots to love.

The third round is Salt the Earth, except we mess it up and don’t deploy a central objective. We agree to have the center two objectives be un-burnable. Nature chooses to go first.


Battlelines! It’s worth noting that Corey chose to take the side he’s on. That giant house on the left would indeed prove to be really hard to work with.

Turn 1: Nature sallies forth, offering the Hallow nothing. The Scorchwings spike off the right Centuars with a lucky opening salvo, then burn their objective. In response, I melt my clock trying to overthink the right Greater Air’s landing places, eventually shoving the Lycan up hard and challenging him to have a go.

Nature 2: I was so concerned about surge that I missed that the right GAE could just straight charge the Lycan Alpha. Sigh. She takes 7 damage and wavers. The Scorchwings abandon the flank while the other GAE hops behind the giant building (OH NO) and the Pegasis continues lurking back there too.

Herd 2: We hammer the Tribal Warrior horde and Brutes into the right Earth Elementals, cracking them and facing as much to the left as possible. The Lycan horde tackles the right Water Elementals over a wall but can’t finish the job. In less decisive moves, nobody can sit the Greater Air in the my lines down, but Centaurs and Tribal Warriors face it anyway. I can’t figure out how to stop the left GAE either – it’s going to hop the building and flank my Stampede. Should I have just suicided the Stampede into the left Water Elementals so it at least does something? Let’s find out together.

Nature 3: The Fire Elementals charge the Tribal Warrior horde, with the Tree Herder hanging back to help surge the right GAE into the rear of the Lycan Horde, which works a treat. Water Elementals hit them in the front for good measure. The left GAE is surged into the flank of the Stampede. Water Elementals hit them in the front for good measure. The Pegasus blocks the left Brutes … and then everybody dies. Including the Tribal Warriors, which was *checks the numbers* a mathematical oddity to be sure. The Scorchwings light the right Brutes up for 4 damage because can.

Herd 3: Things are collapsing a little faster than expected, but there’s always vengeance, m’right? The right Brutes launch off the hill into the Tree Herder, one rounding the big tree despite bane chant failing at the worst time. The other Brutes splatter the Pegasus that was giving to them. I’m allowed to touch the Greater Airs, so the Tribal Warriors on the left do 6 to theirs and the Lycan Alpha does 3 to the right one.

Nature 4: Fire and Rocks crash into the left Brutes as Scorchwings and Water descend on the right Brutes. They both die. The Tribal Warriors on the left are ended by Greater Air in the front and Water surged into their flank, and the Lycan Alpha is straight clubbed to death by one hindered Greater Air. At this point I am strongly considering giving her the Wingbane Cloak 😛

Herd 4: The Tribal Warriors try and fail to kill the right Greater Air, as the Centaurs try and fail to kill the Water Elementals (who are well regenerated at this point). If you squint, you can see the Great Chieftain charge the left Greater Air out of spite. Well, that plucky mushroom man with a spear kills the bastard, pushed over by dread 😀

Nature 5: Nature’s fury is vented on the rears of the Hallow’s last remaining scoring units. They die.

Herd 5: The Great Chieftain trips over the fence and doesn’t do much to some Water Elementals but the Centaur Chief kills the other Greater Air. Get some!

Turn 6: Corey grabs five objectives and the Scorchwings whiff on the Centaur hero, who goes on to kick the Druid as spitefully as possible. My Great Chieftain keeps stabbing some Water Elementals but really whatever. There’s no Turn 6, making this a staggering …


I was hoping for a few more points, but you know, I’ll take that one point in a maybe-worst Herd into maybe-best Nature match. Corey is an absolute machine who didn’t move from the top two tables. One of these days, Reynolds!

Walking away with 42 of 63 points at the end of Day One was quite the achievement for me. I celebrated by having a couple drinks with my dog, somehow getting some sleep, then racking up for Day Two.