Righty. So Homecon was a HEAP of fun. FINALLY got to have another game vs Glen which was really fun and best demonstrated the holes in the list.
First of all my result: 13th, or 2nd to last. 4 losses-that were all effective wipe outs, and 1 hard won victory vs woodies.
Game 1 was vs Pete's Ogres. Impact hits...gross. Literally what won him the game, well that and a very cleverly executed list. Best part of the game was a unit of 10 archers taking out 2 ironblasters...IN COMBAT. 1st one had the help of an eagle and eagle noble in the flank for a run down. Archers ran into the front of 2nd ironblaster. Won combat due to my +1 CR for charging = run it down.
Game 2: Jack's Tomb Kings. Another hard match up due to big scary monsters. 1 died easily to MINDRAZORED spears, while the other refused to die/crumble no matter what I threw at it (eventually tarpitted it on ethereal mage!). That warkitty did 23 out of a potential 24 thunderstomps too. I was frustratingly close to winning the game twice. 1st time was when my Dragon princes got a charge off on his archer unit in front of the bunker. A few extra kills and I would have been into the general's unit. Once that failed, my spears (fresh off MINDRAZORing a warkitty) successfully punched through the remainder of the unit....only to not roll high enough on the over run. sigh. Eagle noble took out heirotitan on the charge ftw! Another effective tabling.
Game 3 vs Joe's Woodies. Running the Woodie list from the Oz ETC team, Joe was a relative N00B with the woodies. However, he is a very good player who had me chasing him into a corner. a unit of 5 wardancers held up my Phoenix guard and spears for too many rounds of combat, delaying me getting everything into his blocks. Same thing with dryads in a forest I had to move through to get to his army. My lvl4 was dwellered turn 1 too. Best part was when 7 Phoenix Guard were front charged by 3 Treekin and rear charged by 5 wildriders...I killed 2 wildriders and then suffered NO casualties in return (4++ FTW). Win for me, but a very hard win.
Game 4 vs Glen's VCs. Took me till turn 4 to kill the mortis engine (longest it lived all weekend)...Eagle noble once again the hero. This game was lost in a failed overrun (needed a 3, rolled snake eyes), and my Phoenix guard getting stuck on a unit I was expecting to punch through (ward save, why art thou abandon me????). A case of trading too many points at the wrong time. Eagle road blocks dying the mortis engine (and therefore defeating the point of the road block) didnt help either!
Game 5 vs Sams OnG. lost turn 1 when goblins were hand of gorked 20 inches forward, releasing fanatics that killed my Dragon Princes, causing eagle noble to panic off the board. Waagh-tillery did the rest and I did not have the numbers to sustain a grind and was tramped down quickly...1 kill short of getting his Black Orcs grrr.
THE GOOD THINGS:
1) The eagle noble with defensive kit is not a permanent fixture. Did what I expected him to do (kill monsters) perfectly.
2) The core. Spears and archers will never let you down; they do exactly what you expect them to do. 20 spears however is not enough as 1 wound and lose 3 ranks. 25 is a much better number!
3) The Eagles
4) Dragon Princes. Only got 1 charge off all event, but everyone saw them as a threat, giving the rest of my army some breathing space.
5) robes on the lvl4.
6) Did you know great Eagles are ws5??????????? I always thought they were ws 4!
THE BAD THINGS:
1) MSU at this points lvl (well, at the extent I took it) does not work unless your opponent has to come to you and has no impact hits...so basically vs WOC. I thought the number of units meant I could create a swarm and get lots of flanks etc. Instead, I just got in my own way. Maybe less, slightly bigger units would be been better...
2) Phoenix Guard are a big pile of fail. They excel at ONE THING...not dying, and even then that cannot be relied on. 1s4 attack does not kill anything, meaning that I needed the magic buffs to do anything.
So what does this all mean for the High Elves?
1) Phoenix Guard go back to being cool display models and the Whitelions make a come back as a combat block...preferably horde formation.
2) less units, but not necessarily much bigger units. 7 Swordmasters pack a huge punch, but still have a "throw away" feel about them. A good balance I am looking forward to exploring.
3) 4 Eagles. Need the chaff to get the set ups and protect the vital combats. 2 die too quickly and cannot do everything they need to.
4) More shooting and bigger spears.
5) A support mage with magic missiles. OMG a must when using shadow!
6) Having an army that can deploy "back" and take its time. I dont feel comfortable rushing an army forward to get position as it usually means running into opposing army traps.
My musings over the weekend had produced my first list for playtesting now that I have 2 more IoB Griffons on the desk waiting conversion:
lvl4: shadow, scroll, robes 325
BSB: GW, AoC, Aolight 158
Eaglenoble: Lance, DA, Chshield, 4++ 195
lvl1: Fire 100
10 Archers: M 115
20 Archers: M, SB 235
25 Spears: FC 250
27 Wlions: FC-flame, ICI 450
2x7 Smasters 210
5 LionPrinces: M 160
4 Eagles 200
Very conscious of only having 2 combat blocks, but will be interesting to see how it plays out considering all the stuff that can redirect etc. I'm also thinking whether shadow is the "best" lore for a list like this. Maybe beasts would be the better choice as it also has all the tools needed to deal with stuff, and less of a need to be in combat to do so.
There is also the option of dropping the swordmasters and Lionprinces for a 2nd white lion block if the smaller stuff if finding itself a bit useless/out matched vs stuff that is not WoC.
The musings continue...