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500 point tournament report with Rivendell

I was really excited to play in a 500 point tournament over the weekend! It was the second of four connected tournaments in the "To War!" escalation series hosted at Your Hobby Place in Fredericksburg, VA. My report from the first tournament can be found here, where my Rivendell forces took third overall! 

My list this time was very similar: Fully kitted out Glorfindel, Cirdan, 7 Elf bows with spears (*), 3 High-elf Elf Warriors with Shields, 9 Warriors with Shields and Spears, and a banner with shield and spear.

*- I actually took 8 bows in my list, which is illegal. To be honest, I have no idea how I completely whiffed on having too many bows. I looked at the "22" models and just calculated off of that which is of course overlooking that 2 of those are heroes. Max bows for 20 warriors is 7. This was caught after my first game thanks to an eagle eyed attendant. Naturally, I turned the error in to the TO immediately and they asked my opponent if it would have made a big difference- to which he replied "no". My bows really didn't do that much damage in my first game, but I was prepared for whatever decision! Pure, idiotic accident but fair is fair. Anyhow, my opponent decided no correction was necessary and it was very gracious of him. I apologize all for bringing an illegal list- I shouldn't have finalized it the morning of! I am thankful it was corrected after my first game and did not affect the following games- particularly my third where my 7 bows were responsible for much carnage.

With that big ol' disclaimer out of the way- on to my first game!

Game One: A Clash By Moonlight vs Kurgan's Moria

The first game was on an awesome board! Lots of ruins and lots of goblins! Kurgan is young, and relatively new to the game. His parents were Tournament Organizers and have clearly raised a well rounded young man! He was fun to play, was a good sport, and was quite knowledgeable in the rules! I've only been playing for four months now myself, so it's fun to play with people still wrapping their head around this awesome ruleset!

Elves battle the forces of Moria near the Redhorn Gate

I forget Kurgan's exact list but it was Durburz, two black shield shamans, two cave trolls, and just a whole smattering of goblins. Being clash by moonlight our bows had less time to fire, but were more impactful when they did! As I mentioned in my big disclaimer my bows didn't get a whole lot of work done- plinking a total of 3 goblins and two wounds on the bat swarm before they were relegated to spear duty.

Kurgan played very very well. His first dice of the game were shattering my banner- bye bye re-rolls! I had positioned myself with terrain on my flanks to keep from getting flanked, so what does Kurgan do? Climb the terrain! Before I knew it a swarm of goblins was clambering over the ruin and getting around me. Thankfully, Elves fight like machines and we were grinding them down. Glorfindel remained super tied up most of the game, with Kurgan feeding one goblin at a time into the meat grinder. 

Still, overall fights were going my way, when suddenly Kurgan got his bat swarm on Cirdan and wiped out his fate and put a wound on him! The bat swarm died shortly thereafter when a Goblin archer on a perch put a fatal arrow through Cirdan's heart! Ouch!

Unfortunately, too many goblins had fallen and as the game drew to a close, it was a 7-1 in my favor. To be honest the score was quite close until right at the end as Cirdan was the first hero to fall. I scored 5 for breaking Moria whole being unbroken, 1 for putting a wound on Durburz (but never being able to close the deal!), and 1 for having a hero remaining. Kurgan scored 1 for having a hero remaining, but up until the last acts of the game, he would have scored 3 more for having killed Cirdan but lost none... but one of his Shamans fell in the last turn of the game.

Again, this was a joy of a game and I'm looking forward to more games with Kurgan in the future.

Game Two: Hold Ground vs Richard's Moria

Okay, this game was nuts! Richard was an awesome opponent and this was by far the most insane game I played today. Richard had 2 Goblin Captains, a Shaman, a whole lot of regular goblins and... the Watcher in the Water. Oof.

Our Maelstram of battle rolls basically had us deploying in opposite corners so the battle was quite slow to develop. The tree in the center of the ruins was considered the objective.

Richard was very cunning and used a march to setup his forces inside the ruin. He totally baited me in after that by having the Watcher in the Water arrive in the middle of his forces; knocking a bunch of them prone! I took the bait and charged... then learned the nastiest trick in the book.

Richard used a 40mm cavalry base to setup a perfect trap for Glorfindel on the far side of the Watcher's base, while ensuring there were no other spots open for him to fit. Around that Glorfindel sized hole there was a Captain, several goblins and spear supports and.... the bat swarm. I had fallen into the trap and I had but one chance to save him! Blinding Light.

For those who don't know where this is going (as I did not!) the Watcher in the water has a ranged tentacle attack that, if it doesn't kill the target, can place them in base contact with the watcher "by the shortest possible path". Richard ensured there was only one spot and it was death to Glorfindel. Very cool, and a fun setup- even if I am somewhat vexxed by it as a rule... seems a little cheesy that you can have models in base contact that did not intentionally charge (which would have required a terror check on Glorfindel) but... is what it is. 

ALL THAT BEING SAID... by the light of the Valar, Glorfindel survived. I think something like 30+ To Wound rolls were made on Glorfindel... and 4 wounds came through, after the Watcher had to spend Might. Of those four wounds Glorfindel saved.... 3 of the 4 with Fate! 

Moments before Glorfindel's demise.

The remainder of the fight was a fun, tense, absolute grind of a battle line as Elves push their way into the ruin. Goblins were dying in droves, but very few elves were slain. Finally after an exhausting fight with the Watcher and slaying the bat swarm, Glorfindel fell. But his sacrifice was such that continuous Blinding Light and some luck were protecting the remaining elves from the tentacles. In the end, the Goblins broke and a few fled the field. When time was called, it was a narrow victory for the elves with 4 more models near the objective than the Goblins had.

I scored 3 points for having more models, and 3 points for breaking my enemy without being broken for a total of 6. Richard killed my leader for 2. Making it another Major Victory for Rivendell!

Game Three vs Assassination vs Javiar's Angmar

My final game was against Javiar and his awesome Angmar army. Javiar is extremely knowledgeable on the ruleset and a top notch player. On paper this mission scared the crap out of me. Cirdan was both my Assassin and my target....  Not ideal. But I'd go for the break and potentially kill my target.

His list consisted of Bhurdur the Troll Chieftain, a Barrow Wight, the Warg Chieftain and a smattering of orcs, wargs, a cave troll, and two dead marsh spectres.

I set up as far back as possible to give my bows time to do some harm. They took out all of his orc bows initially, then chipped away at his orc ranks before our lines clashed. The combination of Cirdan's Terror bubble and Fearless bubble is, honestly, the hard counter to many of Angmar's abilities and that made this an uphill fight for Javier. 

This game was pretty intense so I only remembered to snap a single picture! 

Still, there were some very tense moments for the Elves. The first was when, after being charged by Bhurdur, the barrow wight got a paralyze off on Glorfindel with a 6. I rolled 2 will plus his two freebies and rolled a 4 high! Had to spend 2 might to keep from being paralyzed... which was well worth it but ouch! 

The second came when his Warg Chieftain pulled off a Heroic Combat and set himself up for a next turn charge on Cirdan. He made it in; and despite having him surrounded with elves he won the fight! He did two wounds to Cirdan, requiring a fate roll... which I passed on a 6 leaving Cirdan with 1 wound. This roll was truly the game- and indeed tournament- winning roll. With Cirdan's auras still going strong the elves managed to break Angmar who then started melting with failed courage. In the end, my target (the Warg Chieftain) was slain and the dust settled. 

I scored 5 points for killing my target, 2 points for killing Bhurdur, and 3 points for breaking Angmar while being unbroken. Javier scored 3 points for wounding Cirdan with his assassin.

In the end that was 10-3 for a third Major Victory in the tournament!

Final Thoughts

I love Rivendell! They're grindy and patient. More importantly, I love this game! We started in May or so, and the last few months have been super exciting. Really grateful for people putting on these awesome events. The prize support was fantastic. So glad me and Chris and Andrew drove up for the day; it was like old times when I used to make tournaments regularly! 

For anyone interested and still reading here were the final rankings by army:

1 Rivendell
2 Isengard
3 Azog's Legion
4 Return of the King LL (Chris)
5 Easterlings
6 Mordor
7 Moria
8 Angmar
9 Erebor Reclaimg
10 Moria (Richard)
11 Khand and Easterlings 
12 Angmar (Javiar)
13 Moria (Kurgan)
14 Mordor (Andrew)
15 Gondor
16 Moria
17 Easterlings
18 Angmar


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