It all started out in the most dubious manner. Mark and I were going to go to Gamesday Baltimore
but it is a bit lame and way too loud so we thought Toronto would be a better choice.
Thus we went out seperate way to convince our women this was a good idea and with their support registered right before
the WHO gave Toronto a traveller advisory for SARS. Then in came Josh witht he idea to go with us but his poor health made this seem
like a bad idea. Back and forth we went still a bit unsure untill the week of the tournament. Friday saw us gathering at Boldo's to
embark on the trek to the Toronto GT with a usual crowd of Josh, Nick, Joe, Mark and myself.
Almost from the start our trip seemed doomed as Josh forgot his eyedrops and I forgot my camera so this report is a bit monochromatic.
At the boarder we where ticketed for inspection and had to explain why 5 fellows of such varying age were riding in such a crappy vehicle at 9pm.
Here our luck changed as the inspector was a player and so we breezed through, with only a minor directional snafu and the fear of scrapping the
van roof in the parking garage remaining until we were dreaming of victories.
After Baltimore I was quite disenchanted with warhammer and gave very little thought to what to play. I thought I would play a tough anti magic list but in the end settled for trading my battle standard bearer for a
a second runesmith and then playing a standard list.
Dwarf lord with gromril armor rune of stone and great weapon
Runesmith with gromril armor rune of stone and great weapon
Runesmith with gromril armor rune of stone and shield
Engineer with great weapon
24 warriors with heavy armor, shield, standard, and muscian
20 warriors with heavy armor, shield, standard, and muscian
25 warriors with shield, standard, and muscian
20 warriors with great weapon, standard, and muscian
16 hammerers with heavy armor, great weapon, shield, standard, and muscian
Cannon rune of fire
Bolt thrower rune of penetration
Saturday morning we arrive at the site and it is fantastic. The tables are varied, they are serving breakfast, and the whole room is carpeted.
Thus in a great move I settle down to play my first opponent on board 1. Jeff black in my opponent and he is playing the Royal House of Norland, an Empire list.
Unfortunately board one has a stream running though it and we are playing the magic circle scenario. His army is Elector count, level 2 mage, level 2 mage, 8 knights of the White Wolf inner circle,
6 pistoliers, 20 swordsmen with griffon banner and 2 detachments of 10 swordsmen, 20 swordsmen with 2 detachments of 10 handgunners, 10 hunsmen, great cannon, and
steam tank with hellblaster. Due to the terrain and scenario he sets up the swordsmen with griffin banner in the center, with the wizards, pistoliers, and cannon. On the right is his steam tank, elector count and other swordsmen, while on the left he has his knights and huntsmen.
Due to the terrain there will be no fighting in the center unless I get destroyed on a flank as there is only one ford and I have the 20 heavy warriors there supported by thunderers, cannon and crossbowmen.
On the left I put dwarves with GW, Bolt thrower, and 24 heavieswith runesmith. On the right the is my general in hammerers and light armor guys and the other bolt thrower.
I go first and fail to wound the steam tank but kill one knight, 2 pistoliers, and 5 swordsmen in one of the detachments. He moves forward leading with the steam tank on the right and the knights on the left while the pistoliers head left
to support his knights. He stays still in the center and casts spells but miscasts one and then spins a 12 to get a fireball off.
In turn two I hit the steamtank with the cannon, kill all but one pistiers and a knight while I set up to take both the knights and the steamtank with shield troops and then counter with gws. He runs right into this by charging my heavys on the left and light on the right.
The steam tank moves only 5 inches but fires his hellblaster, malfunctions, rolls a 6, and does 13 wounds to both him and me while the knights win by 1. I hold both sides and then counter punch and win both combats leaving the steam tank with 3 steam points.
On turn 3 he is done on the left as the knights and pistier break scaring the hunsmen off the board. On the right he moves the tank out of combat and misses a charge with his swordsmen.
Turn four I start shooting his swordsmen in the center and finish the game by moping up the steam tank and overrunning into the flank of his swordsmen.
I fail to catch them but it is over as he has halved a few units while I have a lot of points.
Round two is against Pascal Fourniers Barbarian tribe of Chaos undivided. Now I have played Pascal before and he is a great player with a wonderful army themed like a celtic barbarian horde. His army is Exualted Champion on Chaos steed with sword of might, Aspiring Champion,
level 2 chaos sorcerer with dispel scroll, level 2 beastman shaman, 20 mauraders with light armor and shield, 20 mauraders with great weapon, 20 mauraders with flail, 5 chosen chaos knights with war banner, chaos chariot, beastman chariot, 15 beastmen with two eapons, 7 chaos furies, 2 units of 9 dogs, and 2 units of maurader horsemen with flail.
He sets up with the three maurader foot units evenly spaced, a horse unit on each flank with a dog unit and the knights on the right in a breakthrough game. I am evenly spaced to try to defend the whole board with two units on the left with the thunderers and three on the right with the crossbowmen. He goes first and moves his units out screening the chariots and putting the furies right in the face of the thunderers.
I shoot at close rande and kill only 4 while the crossbowmen kill only 2 horsemen and the machines miss. On turn two he charges a bolt thrower with his furies and moves to start surrounding the units on the right but the furies miss lose combat and go poof. On my turn I charge a unit of dogs who flee, start shooting the beast herd, manuever the best I can, and miss with the war machines.
Turn three his knights flank charge a unit which flees, and his mauraders charge my big unit of heavy armored warriors lose and run panicing his beastman shaman. My hammerers flank charge the knights who run and I charge a unit of dogs and move right up to the fleeing mauraders. My machines fail again to kill the chariots and the thunderers kill a few more beastmen.
Turn four his beastman chariot and 2 units of mauraders charge the hammerers, his beastmen charge a bolt thrower, a chariot with one wound charge the crossbowmen, and everything rallies. when the crossbowmen fail to kill the chaiot with a stand and shoot they are destroyed, and the hammerers lose by 1 and fail the break test on a 9 and are destroyed. On my turn 4 I charge the mauraders with the unit of warriors and a unit of maurader horsemen
but as the machines miss again and the thunderers only kill 3 at short range my game is over. On the last turn I can still get a draw if my big unit of heavies with runesmith came pursue 5 inches but alas this is not my game and Pascal hands me another loss in one of the most enjoyable game I have ever played.
Round 3 I play Jason Merriman who is playing high elves never meant to attend then tournament, but when his best friend could not he took his place. In order to play a painted army he has to play Teclis and rounds this out with 20 spearmen, 20 swordsmen, 2 units of 12 archers, 2 repeat bolt throwers, 8 shadow warriors, and a hero with reaver bow. The scenario is an objective one and he has set up a balanced line with his spearmen and hero on one side while Teclis and the swordsmen
guard the left. I set up a big unit of warriors before each objective and the hammerers oposite Teclis and the great weapon guyes opposite the spearmen. I go first and move towards the objectives and kill a bolt thrower dead. He starts pounding the crossbowmen, and hammerers with missles and magic. This continues for 3 turns except I have the objectives and have killed a few spearmen and swordsmen. On turn four I charge his weakened spearmen
and wipe them out. On his turn he kills all the hammerers and crossbowmen but now he has to get the objectives from me. To taunt him I turn and move away while on the right I kill the archers. He finally engages my heavies kills my general but loses and then is defeated when I flank charge with my lights. When I catch Teclis it is all over and I have won big.
At the end of day one we enjoy the great meal they serve us at the tournament and then return to the hotel room to play Puerto Rico. Nick leads us all with a 2-0-1 record, Josh and Mark are 1-0-2, Joe is 1-1-1, and I am 2-1. With similiar records we call it an early night so we can be well rested the next day.
Sunday begins with a pleasant breakfast and then round 4 where I meet Maxime Croteau's Goblin army in trickle down. He is sporting 3 chariots, a giant, 36 wolf rider fast cavalry in 6 units without bow, 12 fast cavalry wolf riders with bow in 2 units, 3 large units of wolf riders with shield and light armor, a goblin lord, 2 goblin heros one with porka's pig stickka, and 2 shammans one with the itty ring.
I set up the lights on the very right the crossbowmen on a hill next to them, then the rest of the troops set up with the Thunderers in the middle. For one of the first time I did not cover the board. I did choose to go first my hammerers arrived and were put on the very left of the line and the cannon arrived which I placed in the center. My troops moved a little and then shot two units dead. On his turn a failed annomosity killed another but he moved out across the board.
Turn 2 both bolt throwers arrive but still no general. Shooting kills most of his large block in the center and another fast cavalry block is deatroyed. On his turn he charges the thunderers with his center block but fails. As my movement keeps him in front of me the wolves start to move around my left side into the hammerers.
Turn 3 still no general but I do get to move my units to block his center unit so it must charge and bring up two units to guard against flanking. Once more my shooting dominates and reduces him to 3 units of fast cavalry. On his turn he charges on pretty much across the board except on the right where he fails animosity. He even charges the hammerers. His giant moves up to force terror tests, and his remaining fast cavalry run to the left and try to get around. I win every combat but with the hammerers who hold but his unit in the center also holds while his other run.
Turn 4 in come the general and runesmith but then I miss a terror check in the center of the board with the unit fighting his center block and run 6 inches. there is nothing I can do as I shoot the unit down to the general and one model and put 3 wounds on the giant. Then I lose again with the hammerers who run, and get caught. He finishes his lucky turn by catching my unit of lights who fled from the terror and charging the unit on the very right and the cannon both of which he wins but then the crossbowmen run!
Turn 5 I am losing but rally the crossbowmen right in front of his general and charge a fast cavalry unit with my general and runesmith who destroy them. Shooting is again good and I destroy the giant and his last fast cavalry unit. I have the charge rallied troops thing going in the left center but am just forcing back a chariot. On his turn his general charges the crossbowmen lose and run without any other wolves while he jumps the small heavy unit with 2 chariots and a hero with porkas but they hold.
Turn 6 I shoot poorly and just break the wolf block which killed the hammerers as the crossbowmen fail to shoot the general for his last wound! In the combat I lose by one but hold. On his turn he rallys the general and his wolf unit but losses the combat by two. It looked good but then only a chariot ran. When we start counting up I had no idea what the result would be but I did have 2 board quarters and that proved to be enough for me to win a squeaker 1487 to 1128. Another great game against a quality opponent.
After a very pleasant lunch I was matched against Chad Hackman a dwarf player in a battle of gain ground. He was sporting 15 iron breakers, 22 warriors with heavy armor and shield and 23 warriors heavy armor shield and great weapon, 12 crossbowmen, 10 thunderers, an organ gun, cannon with rune of forging, stone thrower with rune of accuracy and penetration, a runesmith and 3 tooled up thane including a BSB with runes of slowness and fear. Now usually when I play dwarves it is a very pleasant game but here we fought about rules a lot. He often guessed bery long at a unit to hit the one behind it, and often just guessed at things he could never see. He also seems to never have heard of chronicles and had a huge blowup about having to choose a target for a charge, but I will get to all of this.
He set up his war machines, iron breakers, and thunders on the right and the rest of his army on the left. I put put the great weapon, crossbowmen, small heavy unit and war machines on the right and the rest on the left. The game began with me letting him move first and he used it to muve up his thunderers and screen his stone thrower from half the board when he tries to fire over them I point out they can not and he chooses another target. After a pathetic shooting phase I moved up my units and shot with similiar results except for killing 3 iron breakers.
Turn 2 he moved up a little and shot a bit more reducing the crossbowmen below the 10 unit size needed to hold a board quarter. I moved up more and shot his fear causing unit with good effect while the hammerers started to move around the flank of his warrior blocks in the middle of the board.
Turn 3 he turns one unit to face the hammerers and moves up his other unit and shoots a few hammerers dead. I charge with the hammerers and set up my other two units to flee from his unit with the BSB. I finally shoot a thunderer dead and position the iron breakers so next turn they will be helpless. I challenge with my general in the hammerers fight and he refuses but insists he chooses who goes to the back and gets a bit aggressive when I suggest we check the rules. Of course it does not matter as the hammerers crush him but he holds.
Turn 4 he tries to charge with his other warrior block with a thane and a BSB. When I ask which unit he replies both. I argue a bit and then get the rule book out. After much discussion he charges one unit and it flees. The hammerers win again and his organ gun blows up. But he shoots over his thunderers with the stone thrower and wrecks my light unit and destroys my cannon. On my turn I run my other unit on the left by his killer unit and shoot it and the crossbowmen while on the other side I charge his iron breakers in the front with great weapon dwarves and pin them in place before moving my other unit into flank position. My shooting lets me down as I reduce the killer unit to 13 and fail to kill a crossbowmen of his.
Turn 5 he charges a unit he can not see with his killer unit and we argue a bit then I let him fail the charge. He once more fires over his thunderers with the stone thrower and then guess 30+ inches at a unit 6 inches away. Fortunately he shoots poorly and I am left with 5 units at unit size 10. My hammerers fianlly win the combat but fail to catch him. On my turn I want to charge the hammerers into the flank of his other unit but his fleeing unit is in the way so I decide to charge the fleeing unit and then redirect but this creates another huge fight as he claims this is exactly what he wanted to do even though he could have charged either unit and I could not but his arguing strategy wears me out so I make a different move. I also flank charge his iron breakers who flee and are caught. My shooting is less than stellar as I fail to kill anyone on this turn.
Starting turn 6 he has 13 warriors in my left quarter and 11 crossbowmen in his left quarter. I have 20+ heavies and the hammerers in his left quarter, 10 lights in my left quarter, and 10 heavies and 16 great weapons in his right quarter.
On turn 6 he turns around his warriors and then shoots one heavy with his thunderers, and lands a stone on my great weapon guys killing 7. Then his general fires a pistol and kills one hammerer. So I charge his warriors in my turn needing 4 wounds in 9 attacks hit on 3 wound on 2, but this was not to be as I kill only 3 and lose the combat and run. He claims a draw but I remind him he need to test to stand so he rolls and fails. Then I measure and we agree if he runs less than 4 inches he is okay but he spins a 9 and I should win. But we have a rule arguement that he claims he can not pursue as he was holding an objective? When this fails to turn into a rule he claims he is much closer than his unit is now placed and I finally blow up and say we measured agreed moved the unit now is too late to go back so I get a win and a low sportsmanship mark to go with my 4-1 record.
For game six I am on board 32 which I can not find. I look all about and finally find it next to game 1. After a bit my opponent finds it as well and places his beautiful army on the table an orc and goblin badlands army with 15 boar chariots, 3 wolf chariots, 2 snotling pump wagons, and a general, hero, and goblin shamman all in chariots. The board is good as there is a hill for my crossbowmen, walls and a hedge to hide behind. So I set up with the cannon on the very left screened by my lights. Next to them are the thunderers behind a hedge, then the great weapons, hammerers and small heavies. Behind the wall I put the bolt throwers and then then the heavies and the crossbowmen on the hill. He puts his general on the very far right and then fills the set up area with chariots.
I win the die roll and chose to go first. I move out the light on the left and fire my guns killing 3 chariots and getting one more with the bolt thrower. On his turn he moves out in a reverse angle so the cannon with not do this again.
Turn 2 I move up the lights once more thinking only one chariot can charge and shoot another 2 chariots dead. On his turn he charges the lights with 2 chariots and both reach but when they bounce off and I pursue.He also charges the crossbowmen who fail to kill a wolf chariot and then do not run.
Turn 3 the victorious lights charge a chariot and then redirect but fail to reach. My cannon does another double this time killing the generals chariot and the bolt thrower scores again. He fails to rally one of his chariots and it leaves the game. He charges the lights and my great weapons with 2 chariots and send one against the crossbowmen. He also double charges my heavies and sends in the general on foot. I decide incorrectly to flee and am run down when I run only 3 inches. Although the lights and the greatweapons lose the combat they do not run.
Turn 4 I misfire with the cannon but roll a 6 and the kill again with the bolt thrower. I also shoot a pump wagon dead with the thunderers and win every combat but the crossbowmen who bolt and are killed. He turns to face the bolt throwers and gets a charge with the pump wagon on the great weapon guys and destroys them but he has already lost 12 chariots and the game is problably out of his reach.
Turn 5 I decide it is time to get board quarters so I move out the hammerers but turn the small heavies so they are facing the wall. The cannon and bolt thrower kill again and the thunderers shoot down a wounded machine. he charges the bolt throwers which I take as I am winning by a lot and should score the general as a result. When he kills the machines his chariots run by and the general is left to face a full unit.
turn 6 I charge the general move the hammerers into another board quarter and miss with the cannon. His general runs right off the board. His last hope is to score the hammerers so he charges with 4 chariots but the pump wagon fails to show and I kill one of the chargers to wind up the fight. He has a lot of dead chariots to the tune of 1225 points but the real problem is I have 4 board quarters, and a general for an additional 500 points so i win 1725 to 1170.
Well with the gaming part done I was 5-1 and feeling pretty good. Unfortunately the rest of the boyz had not fared as well. Josh was a disappointing 1-3-2, Mark was pleased with 2-2-2, Joe 1-3-2, and Nick a fine finish at 3-2-1. Emotions were not high as we sat through the filler until the awards. I was even starting to doze off when my name was announced as the winner of best general on the strength of my army composition. It was a perfect ending to the weekend as even my second worst sportsmanship and tenth place finish did not bother me. I had accomplished three goal, getting a trophy, going 5-1 and finishing better than Josh. This tournament was also a wonderful contrast to the Baltimore tournament. Besides being less expensive the room was nicer and not just the carpeting. The use a microphone help make things run one time and with greater fluidity, while the lack of the long breaks between games made for a much more pleasant day. The biggest difference was the in the scoring.
While it was still not perfect making opponents score composition fixes most tournament problems. There were no ISOC armies and even the few best of the best armies were overshadowed by the many nicely themed armies. With this scoring the tournament was a lot more friendly and had better armies. Of course no discusion of Toronto is complete without a kudo to the catering staff. The food was plentiful, tasty and alwasys available. Providing free meals is a huge plus at the tournament and helps them keep the schedule.