Battle Report: 1000 points Khorne Daemons vs. 1000 points Zombies (Vampire Counts)
Six turns (plus one) Zombies move first.
The zombie hordes had seen one battle before, that against the beasts of Chaos army. In that struggle the zombies were counted as the losers, with much of their army ripped to pieces. But it had moments where a zombie victory seemed possible. So the zombies are pulled out again to battle against 1000 points of Khorne daemons. 4 groups of 40 zombies, each with a standard and a musician are lead by one necromancer with all the spells on his corpse cart and another necromancer on foot with the book of dancing dead.
The khorne forces are lead by one Herald of Khorne with flaming attacks and body armour. The mighty herald joins a unit of 11 bloodletters with full command and will lead two more units of 10 bloodletters (full command) and two groups of flesh hounds into battle (11 total). The bloodletters are mostly untried in Fantasy, having seen some action in 40K. In 40K they are excellent marine killers but not so good against guardsmen. We shall see how they do against the fantasy undead.
Unlike the last time the zombies fought with seven pieces of terrain crowding the battlefield, we go with a lightly dotted landscape. One hill crested with heads from a lost civilization. The monolith (one of many that dot my warhammer world) and a small hill with more rocks on it are all that can be seen.
With the zombie first move the plan is straight forward. The necromancer will use the book to move one group of zombies in the south forward in an effort to flank the line of daemons when they hit the zombies in the middle of the table. A group of zombies is raised from the dead and bolstered with more zombies to intercept the approaching flesh hounds in the north. The magic phase goes almost entirely the way the undead wish, with the zombie general getting both his spells cast, as well as the bound spells all working. Only the necromancer on foot fails his spell, rolling a single die looking for 4.
The Daemons of Khorne move forward, not recklessly but carefully. Both groups of flesh hounds are moved to flank, one in the north and one in the south. The bloodletters themselves move forward slowly. One unit of ten on each side of their commander and his unit of 11. (I deployed them in file of 4 because I thought that was legal. As I understand now looking over the rules that 4 is 6th edition thinking and it has to be 5 for 7th edition. I’ll double check later, but carried on the battle regardless.)
Zombie turn two was more slowing shifting forward with failed charges from the lead zombies. More dead summoned, with the raise dead spell being stopped by the dice. It also allowed the daemons to stop the corpse cart from granting strikes first to the zombies around it. That power will promise to be painful.
Daemon turn 2 is marked by charging. Four units charge into the zombies and deal heavy damage. Over 20 zombies fall either through injury or their magic failing to hold them together. The herald and his unit score only 2 kills, even after rerolling to hit because of their hatred. This results in the herald’s unit losing combat and making a leadership test itself.
Zombie turn 3 sees another group of zombies launch a charge against the bloodletter line. This time the zombies are able to flank and will add their weight to pushing the bloodletters down. The dispel dice come up snake eyes, giving the zombies total control over the rest of the magic phase. More undead are raised into existence to flank charge next turn, while a number of the existing units are increased in size. The bloodletters which are being flanked are having terrible luck rolling dice, scoring four ones to hit and one one to wound. In that battle the daemons will end up losing combat and having three lost to warp instability.
Daemon turn 3 has the daemons with their only unengaged unit, the flesh hounds in the south, attempt to charge the zombies and come up short. The rest of the daemons have no choice but to attempt to slay the unliving foes that now threaten to pull them down. Much to the horror of the daemons, they actually use more of their number this turn then they slay zombies. The corpse cart has given the zombies unnatural speed. It accounted for very little last phase but this time the daemons feel their low toughness score. The one group of daemons fighting off 60 zombies, 11 at a time, end up losing combat so badly that between the wounds from the zombies and daemonic instability they are wiped out. Now it becomes 35 daemons against 150 zombies or so.
Zombie turn 4 sees the zombies push in towards the bloodletters. Both the remaining bloodletter groups are now fighting on two sides, with the herald of khorne and his bloodletters being attacked by over 60 zombies. The magic phase goes to the undead as the dispel dice are held to cancel the strike first powers of the corpse cart. Thus another group of zombies can be summoned and added to. This group shall be used to flank the flesh hounds when they charge into the zombie mess.
The close combat phase also goes badly for the bloodletters. Another bad roll off the bloodletters results in only a single zombie death and then a loss of combat for the daemons. Five daemons die in the center and five zombies, not an exchange rate the daemons can afford. The only upside is that the flesh hounds have an excellent round against the zombies they were fighting in the north, destroying the group completely after the leadership test.
Daemon turn 4 has the few remaining bloodletters worried. They are both fighting battles on two sides, against foes that are just strong enough to wound them one third of the time, and who hit them one third of the time. Sure one third of the time they save the wound, but the numbers against them are adding up.
Lucky, the flesh hounds of khorne are able to both smash into the zombie horde like bookends. It took the group in the south four turns to finally get into combat, but thankfully it is going to be worth the wait. The flesh hounds hit the zombies and kill six on the first impact. The zombie horde makes the snake eyes leadership test and loses no more members.
In the north the flesh hounds also strike into the zombies, and the zombies fail their leadership with an eleven. The general will be able to give his leadership to them, but still a large number of zombies fall as the magic that bounds them together fails against the flesh hounds.
Zombie turn five has the zombies looking not as impressive as before. The necromancer on foot is trying to stay out of the way of the khorne daemons should they win, while the general on the corpse cart is trying to get his cart into a position to maximize the strike first power. The flesh hounds in the south get charged by zombies, trying to break them.
The magic phase doesn’t work as well for the zombies, as they are attempting to boost their zombie’s attacks and numbers. Another group of zombies is summoned to rear charge the flesh hounds next turn if possible. The book of dancing is able to allow a group of six zombies to attack now out of turn, an attack that kills two daemons. However, that is the only good thing that happens for the zombies this phase, as the last remains of the group that the flesh hounds charged fall. Another daemon falls in the other combats, but they manage to take twelve zombies with them.
Daemon turn five is the final nail in the coffin of the zombies. The flesh hounds, having ripped through two groups of zombies, are free to charge the necromancer general on the corpse cart. The ranks are redressed to bring the maximum bloodletters against the zombies in the north, and the battle will come to a head here.
The flesh hounds are able to rip the corpse cart to pieces, even with its regeneration. The necromancer lands on his feet against the flesh hounds, worried. The other zombies also lose their various combats. Eighteen daemons remain out of the forty three that launched the battle. There are still over 100 zombies in play but it doesn’t look good for them.
Zombie turn six has the zombies in a tough place. Their general is in single combat against six flesh hounds of khorne. Their zombie hordes are two large blocks and then four small blocks being threatened. A group of zombies that were summoned last turn to attack the flesh hounds get their chance, rushing in to attempt to save the general. Using all their magic the zombies try to get strike first and extra attacks for the zombies against those flesh hounds.
It isn’t enough, as the flesh hounds are able to rip the necromancer general into pieces. However, all that magic being shot around allows the zombies to catch and rip the daemon herald of khorne and his bloodletter escort into pieces. The herald himself falls to daemonic instability as two of his escort fell to zombie claws. So at the end of the turn we have both generals dead and the combat coming to an end. The zombies hold themselves together well with the general dead, only a handful die.
Daemon turn six has the daemons pushing forward their advantage and cutting down the necromancer on foot with their last bloodletters. The flesh hounds keep chewing into their zombie targets. One group of zombies will be lost, leaving fourteen daemons of khorne against 56 zombies. The ratio of zombie to daemon is finally swinging in favour of the daemons.
Thus ends the official six turns of the game, with the points saying that the daemons of khorne have won. 725 or so points for the zombies and 950 or so points for the daemons of khorne. A close match in the end, and close enough that it calls for one more turn.
Turn seven for the zombies sees some bad leadership rolls with their general dead. One group of zombies fighting the flesh hounds in the north falls apart completely, while the other two groups, even with their losses, are able to charge the last bloodletters. The zombies are then able to pull those last bloodletters to pieces, without giving the bloodletters a chance to strike back.
Daemon turn seven has the flesh hounds charge one group of zombies, smashing through it and following up against to the final group of zombies.
And as the game was down to three units, I kept going. Zombie turn eight has a handful of zombies fall without the magic of their general holding them together, but the flesh hounds fail to wound a zombie on their own. In revenge the zombies are able to pull down one flesh hound, after instability rolls.
The second group of flesh hounds joins into the battle against the zombies and it will end quickly with the zombies putting up some brief struggle.