Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Orcs vs. Dwarves - Kings of War AAR

This weekend past, I asked Curt if he wouldn't mind helping me test the foam sheet units - from my Hobby Done Cheap post - using the Kings of War rules. Curt took the Orcs, obviously, and I ran the Dwarves.

The table featured some line-of-sight blocking terrain, some cover providing terrain, and some terrain that would slow down units that passed through them (the dark patches of green representing forests). Our respective forces would start on the black edges and move onto the table, which would give us a little more room to maneuver.

Our armies were tactical opposites. Curt's Orcs had faster moving infantry with cavalry and chariot units, while my Dwarves were slower moving but had ranged attacks from the Rangers, Ironwatch, and artillery units.

Curt had placed his Gore Chariots on one flank, and his Gore Riders on another. With their great mobility, the Riders and Chariots came screaming through the woods on either side while his infantry advanced over the hills at a dead run. 

I deployed my artillery on my flanks, hoping the Ironbelcher Cannon and Flame Belcher would be enough to hold Curt's flankers while my infantry advanced to the opposing line. Unfortunately, this plan failed when Curt managed to keep his line just out of charge distance of my stubby-legged Dwarves, allowing the Orcs to charge into combat first.

While my Flame Belcher had some luck with holding back two of the Gore Chariots, the single Ironbelcher wasn't nearly as useful, and the cannoneers watched helplessly as the Gore Riders slammed into the flank of the Rangers, routing them after a single charge.

The Riders would then proceed to roll up my right flank, similarly crushing my Shieldbreakers unit on the right. Curt's envelopment of my line meant that none of my units could turn to face the Riders without receiving a flank charge from the main line of Orcs. My only hope was that I could break Curt's line at some point and force a similar roll along one of his flanks.

Unfortunately that plan didn't come to fruition, with the Orcs massacring the Dwarves and turning the battle into a complete rout. It was a total victory for the Orcs, who only lost two Gore Chariots during the entire battle.

As crushing as my defeat was, I enjoyed using the KoW rules - and Curt certainly did. We've never really played any games together that involved lines of battle, and Curt appreciated this, being a big fan of the Total War series of computer games.

What's great about the King of War ruleset is that there is a plethora of historical lists that could easily run games from the ancient age of hoplites up to the English Civil War. And with my cheap method of making units, I can see plenty of game of KoW in the future!


  1. It's a great set of rules. It should adapt to historical armies very easy.

    1. I'm trying to decide on what to do! It's a tie between Greek hoplites, Punic Wars, and Dark Ages.