perjantai 4. elokuuta 2017

LOTR Megabattle: Helms' Deep

2000p. Rohans vs. 2000p. Isengard



Preparations


I had been fortunate to find a NEW set of pre-painted Helm's Deep Fortress at Ropecon and of course I had to give it (and the spend money ) a go! 


When LOTR-gaming champion Adrian from Turku asked for gaming company for this week, I was totally up to it. Just had to paint / fine tune some 40 Rohans... Starting points varied from mending some broken painted models to black under paint and almost everything in between. 


Gandalf the not yet so white leads the way

Scenario

Google delivered us a Helms Deep scenario from the One Ring forum.

As a quick summary, victory points were dealt as follows:

 Evil Victory points

5 points for breaching the Hornburg Gate (or opening it from the inside)
5 points for destroying the culvert section of the Deeping Wall
5 points for moving 10 models off the South board edge or through the door to the Keep
5 points for killing Gandalf
5 points for killing Theoden
5 points for killing Aragorn
2 points each for every other named character killed - Note The King’s Huntsman is not a named character

Good Victory Points

5 points if the Hornburg Gate is not breached (or opened from the inside by Evil models)
5 points if the culvert section of the Deeping Wall is not destroyed
5 points if less than 10 Evil models move off the South board edge or through the door to the Keep
5 points if Gandalf survives
5 points if Theoden survives
5 points if Aragorn survives
5 points for Breaking the Evil army
5 points if Gandalf can move into base contact with Theoden or Aragorn (at which point the reinforcements are assumed to have made safe the fortress)
5 points if the Evil force is completely wiped out

Forces


The final force of 2005 points arrayed ready for battle


 Good alliance

Defenders of the Hornburg 1250p.

Theoden
Gamling
Hama
12 Royal Guards
24 Rohan Archers
12 Rohan Oathsworn
Grimbold
6 Helmingas 

Gimli
Legolas
6 Galadhdrim Archers
6 Galadhdrim Warriors with Elven glaives

Gandalf & Rohirrim

Eomer
6 Sons of Earl
9 Riders of Rohan with bows
6 Riders of Rohan with bows & TW
Some banners

Mikko and Adrian commanded the Isengard forces...

Deployment

Marko - as my ally - took the defense of the Deepening wall with Gimli, Legolas, Galadhrim, Grimbold, Helmingas and Rohan archers and Oathsworn warriors. I took the defense of the Hornburg walls and the Keep with Theoden and his Royal Guard supported by some archers and warriors.


Legolas was kind enough to fetch a box for Gimli... (Clip 1:55)

Isengard forces deployed - starting positions were 13" from the wall

Thin line of defenders in Hornburg


Early stages

Evil side won the first priority and the ladder and battering ram carrying uruk-hais dashed forward...


Closing rapidly under the hail of arrows from defenders (clip 3:40)

Elven bows were singing death to the Uruks, but Gimli  was getting frustrated - bring it on!

Rohan archers joined in with a volley as more Royal Guard were sent to the walls from the Keep. Scary Uruk Hai crossbows took positions and aimed...


Ladders up - ladders down!

Next phase  of the battle started as Uruks reached the walls and raised the ladders. Defenders were busy pushing them over to give archers more time to thin the attacking horde...




Archers were focusing their fire on Feral Uruks and Berserkers

Some ladders stayed up or were hoisted by the bolt throwers...
At least Gimli was happy!




Knock, knock...

Uruks just kept coming - led by the ferocious Berserkers - "soft" Rohan men were no match for them...


















But the Royal Guard stood their ground well on the walls!


Kaboom!

Is that all that you got? (clip 0:30)


And to no one's surprise a breach was blown in to the Deepening wall; a very thin line of defenders moved to block the opening... thin except Gimli...

 Meanwhile in the Hornburg, Theoden had led his Guard to defend the gateway, the gate would soon crash...


Crash! (clip 2:10)


Brace yourself men! (clip 2:25)

Situation on the Hornburg flank...


Manflesh!


Battle climax - fight for the passages

Evil forces had now opened two way into the fortress of Helms Deep and only a small but heroic groups of warriors stood in their way. Would the evil tide wash over them or would it break on these rock hard defenders?

Gimli and the men of Rohan blocking the breach - supported by arrows from Legolas and others (clip)



Instead of just holding back and waiting for the Uruk's charge Theoden
commanded his men (heroic move) to charge the enemy to benefit from their throwing weapons.
Uruks seemed to be in a bit of a disorder...

In the meanwhile hard struggle for the walls continued. This was probably the deciding moment: more men would have been needed at the gate, but they were tied up on the walls... Aragorn and Legolas were also still at the breach...



Overview

Desperate measures: as the number of defenders was quickly whitling away desperate actions were called for: while Gimli and Aragon fought overwhelming numbers at the breach alone Rohans charged enemies at the walls to tie them down / stopping them from getting to the archers, whom still had few arrows left...

 Gimli & Aragon - mighty heroes


You shall not pass!

Against the odds...

Still holding! Hama (on the stairs) realises, that his lord is
in grave danger and dashes down the stairs, calling rest of the Royal
Guard to follow - will they make it in time?

The Royal standard of Rohan keeps Theoden and his men
in the fight...

Overrun!

But Theoden and his knights could only hold for so long: Uruks had a clear advantage: they could bring 2 pikes to support each fight, but the Rohans had no means to support the front line. After few pushbacks the Uruks poured into the courtyard. King Theoden, Gamling and the few remaining knights are trapped - and Gamling is slain as he protects the King! - The Royal Standard goes down!


Overview of the battlefield
- no sign of Gandalf and Rohirrim yet!

More Royal Guards attempt to leave the wall as the lone archers stands alone 
to buy them time...


Gimli takes the lead 6-5

Man and elf stand side by side on the right flank remains 
of the Deepening wall

Aragorn and Legolas arrive to meet the king in the Keep,
only to find him still in the courtyard - trapped in the corner!

Hard fighting takes place on the stairs as the Royal
Guard struggle to get to their king - one even jumps from the wall and survives!

One knight stay behind - sacrificing himself for the greater good - but is it all in vain?

Sun rises


Uruk Hai Commander Mikko hears the clap of hooves over the ridge...

Gandalf, Eomer and Rohirrim have arrived!!!

A lone Galahdrim warrior takes courage from the arrival of reinforcements and
single handed holds the Uruks at bay on the right end of Deepening wall. Some of the Uruks
are so crazed, that they start jumping down from the wall - most of them to their deaths!


Gimli still stands in the breach! Uruks will soon be squashed
between the hammer (Rohirrim) and the anvil (Gimli)!
(clip)



King has fallen

Aragorn and Legolas mount up and charge out of the Keep to aid Theoden, who stands surrounded 
by Uruks - only loyal Hama has made it to the king from the walls

Aragon calls for a heroic combat and slays several Uruks, opening a path for Theoden to retreat...
but it's too late - king Theoden is finally brought down with a blur of attacks from the enraged Uruks!

Even as the sun is just rising in the Middle-Earth, it has long since gone dawn in our real life Finland and we decide to call it a day. Short speculation follows and we estimate victory points to fall as follows:

Evil:

5 points for breaching the Hornburg Gate
5 points for destroying the culvert section of the Deeping Wall
5 points for moving 10 models off the South board edge or through the door to the Keep
5 points for killing Theoden
2 points each for every other named character killed: Gamling & Hama

Total: 24 points

Good:

5 points if Gandalf survives
5 points if Aragorn survives
5 points for Breaking the Evil army
5 points if Gandalf can move into base contact with Theoden or Aragorn (at which point the reinforcements are assumed to have made safe the fortress)

Total 20 points (including quite a few ifs...)

Gandalf & Rohorrim would certainly spread havoc
amongst the Uruks 



End of Game - 13 rounds played

...And Gimli won the body count competition 13-6 against Legolas (clip)


Totally awesome game! We will redo this soonish! stau tuned!




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