In the beginning…
Well in the beginning I can see that I made a mistake with the new Mahud profiles. They have been correctly reduced in power and their points reduced. No longer do they have 2 attacks. To be fair that makes sense. So next time I will use those. They do keep Impaler attacks (p29 on War Camels). Hopefully my Armybuilder profiles will get updated at some point.
Andy and Bruce played as Evil (Suladan and K’Kala) and Phil and Mike as Good (Boromir and Eomer). Suladan placed his infantry opposite Eowyn’s and Hama’s with his Cavalry to their left and K’Kala with his camels and Mumak to the far left. Boromir placed his Knights and Guard infantry opposite K’Kala and Gamling and the Mounted Royal Guard opposite Suladan. Eomer placed his cavalry to the far left edge opposite the Watchers of Karna and would be in command of Eowyn and Hama.
The new deployment rules certainly lead to an exciting first turn and with Evil winning priority this led to a flurry of Heroic Move declarations as the Cavalry vied with each other to charge first. Boromir won the role off and charged the Camel riders with his Knights. This cancelled K’Kala’s own action. Suladan therefore went next and charged Gamling cancelling his action. The Mumakil moved out of the Dead Marsh and threatened Boromir’s flank raining a hail of darts and arrows on the hapless Banner Bearer. The Half Trolls charged out of the woods and crashed into Eowyn’s Warband. Hama watched this from the safety of the ruined tower and Eomer decided that he would rather be on the right flank after all.
The Knights of Minas Tirith wiped out the Camel riding Mahuds but K’Kal survived his duel against Boromir at great cost to Boromir in terms of might. Supported by the Guards of the Fountain Court Gamling and his Royal Guard pushed back Suladan’s Serpent Riders. The Half Trolls did a lot of damage to the Rohan Warriors but Eowyn survived.
Next Boromir again had to use Might to declare a Heroic Charge against the Mumakil before it could trample his Knights. Frustratingly half his Knights froze in panic so would not support him and the rest were unable to beat K’Kala. Gamling and his Guardsmen continued to kill the Serpent Riders whilst Suladan held his own against Gamling. Hama moved his Royal Guard towards the half Trolls who were busy massacring the Rohan Warriors but Eowyn and her men managed to kill one and wound another though the Mahud King proved indomitable. Eomer raced towards the rear centre of the field.
The Mahud Beast Master kept control as his beast suffered wounds from Boromir and the Citadel Archers firing from the safety of the woods. He then turned his Mumak towards Boromir and trampled him! Boromir’s mount died and he barely survived. This
should have given his Knights time to kill K’Kala but they lost and were slaughtered.
Finally the Mumak slew Boromir and K’Kala rode to the rescue of Suladan. Gamling and the Minas Tirith Captain fought on against the two Evil Heroes as their men fell around them. Hama charged to the rescue of Eowyn slaughtering the Half Trolls. However Eowyn at this point bravely rushed in to support her remaining few warriors against the mighty Mahud King and was cut down in front of Hama! At this point the Good force was broken and with Boromir slain the Guardsmen had lost their Bodyguard status.
Eomer raced round towards the Mumak and bravely fought on. Though he was able to wound it slightly it was too powerful and its crew rained deadly fire upon his Riders. With Eomer defeated Hama and the Guardsmen also lost their Bodyguard Status and Victory was awared to the forces of Evil.
It was certainly fun to fight a Mumakil for the first time. They are powerful with that Trample rule. It burnt a lot of Boromir’s might just to be able to charge it and avoid this for a few turns. However the supporting fire from the crew is nasty and can pick off supporting models. Next time of course I will fire at the Beast master as that seems a better idea when possible. More archery is clearly the way forward as my Knights failed their Terror tests at a crucial moment when Boromir charged into combat only to find himself alone. Having those lancers with him would have helped.
The changes to the profiles in the new game books do make sense. Those Mahud were overpowered with 2 attacks and the Impaler rule so the alterations to make them more human are appreciated. This was the first time I had used them in SBG so seeing them in action shows why the changes were needed. The Riders of Rohan now all have Bows so that will make a difference in List building and tactics. Another mistake I made was somehow thinking that the Royal Standard of Rohan was not a Banner initially which of course it is and so Gamling suffers a -1 in combat rolls to win which means he is not so good as a Warband Leader.
The Tactics of the set up using the new scenarios are certainly different as units can be set up in charge range right from the start.