This battle report is played using Oathmark: Battlesworn, the new supplement for Oathmark: Battles of the Lost Age. The miniatures are from North Star Military Figures and the game mat is from playmats.eu.
After beating back Urzag’s raids, Prince Roderick leads a combined Human and Elf force on an attack against the outer edges of the Goblin Kingdom, aiming to destroy some of their sacred oathmarks. His advance has not gone undetected, however, and Urzag has rallied units of Goblins and Dwarves to help defend his land.
Both armies are bringing elite forces into battle, with Battle Honours on Roderick’s Human Spearmen and the Elf Allies he has brought into the battle. On the side of Urzag, his Goblin Wolf Riders are veterans, as are the 19 Dwarf Soldiers led by their champion Brennon.
Both armies also know the value of Engineers, with each army taking one unit to help build (and tear down) fortifications. The destructible walls on the table are the grey stone walls.
Prince Roderick’s Army (1789 points)
Prince Roderick leading a unit of 19 Human Spearmen (Prince Roderick has taken the Banner of Courage Magic Item, which gives the unit the Courage (1) special ability) (462 points) (Battle Honours 1)
A Level 3 Human Spellcaster (with the Ring of Spellcasting Magic Item, which grants him access to one additional spell. His spells are Blade Mastery, Shift, Courage, and Fireball) (230 points)
10 Human Archers (120 points)
10 Human Soldiers (120 points)
10 Elf Archers (240 points)
5 Elf Archers (120 points)
14 Elf Spearmen with Champion (412 points) (Battle Honours 1)
5 Dwarf Engineers (75 points)
Urzag’s Goblin and Dwarf Army (1776 points)
Urzag, a Mounted Goblin Advisor, leading a unit of 9 Goblin Wolf Riders (354 points) (Battle Honours 1)
Brennon, the Dwarf Champion, leading a unit of 19 Dwarf Soldiers (387 points) (Battle Honours 1)
A Level 2 Goblin Spellcaster (spells: Fireball, Weakness) (80 points)
A Level 2 Dwarf Spellcaster (spells: Resolute and Gathering of Crows) (100 points)
Gobby, the Goblin Captain, leading 19 Goblin Soldiers (304 points)
9 Goblin Archers with Goblin Captain (204 points)
Matilda Jr, the Dwarf Champion, leading a unit of 9 Dwarf Linebreakers (Matilda Jr has the Sword of Starsilver Magic Item, which gives her +1 on her Champion Die rolls) (292 points)
5 Dwarf Engineers (expert) (105 points)
Prince Roderick’s forces claim the initiative, and seek to boost their chances in combat through the use of magic. Alas, their Wizard was unprepared, and failed to cast Blade Mastery on the elite Elven spearmen.
Urzag’s Dwarf Spellcaster showed his adversary how it was done, successfully casting Gathering of Crows on the 20 Dwarf Soldiers, granting them Shielding (2) against ranged attacks (something they were particularly worried about given the Elven Archers in Roderick’s army)
Eager to test the strength of the spell, Prince Roderick activated his own unit and the nearby Human Archers, ordering them to send a volley into the Dwarf Warriors. With only 3 dice to roll, and requiring a 7 to hit, they only managed to inflict a single casualty, but it showed the Prince that these Dwarves were not invulnerable.
With his own unit, he started his advance through the words, spying a lightly guarded Oathmark through the trees.
One volley was met with another, as the Goblin archers defending the central oathmark fired upon the Elf Archers, the only unit they could see from their position. Impressive archery saw 2 elves fall, depriving them of the valuable second rank bonus for firing.
The Elves returned fire in response, but with the Goblins hiding behind a low wall they only managed to inflict a single casualty. Shown up by Goblin Archers? Surely their pride would not let this stand!
With the central unit of Elf Archers activated, Urzag felt comfortable charging forward with his Wolf Riders, ordering the nearby unit of Goblin Soldiers to hold the oathmark in case of enemy attacks. Unfortunately, this new position put them in range of the second unit of Elf Archers, and 2 fell as a rain of arrows fell upon them. Remembering how they had fled the battle in the previous game, Urzag was concerned, but was relieved to see them standing firm against the attack.
Spying Roderick’s spearmen advancing through the woods, the Elite Dwarf Engineers moved forward, getting into position to build defences to help hold the oathmark against attack. Roderick’s engineers moved into position to build a wall to halt the opposing Wolf Riders, and the rest of the turn was given over to manoeuvring and failed magic.
Roderick’s forces were first to go again. Sensing an attack from Urzag’s Wolf Riders were imminent, the Dwarf Engineers set to work building a low wall, offering some defence against any oncoming charge.
This caused Urzag to think twice about a charge, spying the Elf Archers hiding behind the Engineers. He looked back to the Dwarf Spellcaster, who proceeded to cast Gathering of Crows on the Wolf Riders, again limiting how effective ranged attacks would be against them.
Defense against ranged attack is all well and good, but it won’t help when faced by an infantry charge. The Elf Spearmen, led by their champion, charged towards the Dwarf Warriors.
The fight that followed was bloody – both units needed 5s to hit, with the Elves causing 6 casualties and the Dwarves scoring 5. Even benefiting from the extra die granted by the nearby Goblin Captain, the Dwarves failed their morale roll (needing a 9 on 3 dice) and were unceremoniously shoved 6 inches back.
Faced by newly built fortifications, and seeing the centre of his line collapsing, Urzag wheeled his Wolf Riders round to attempt to flank the Elf Spearmen next turn. He also ordered his archers to fire upon them, an impressive volley that felled 3.
Recognizing the threat, the nearby Elf Archers fired upon the Wolf Riders, but only inflicted a single casualty, hardly enough to bother Urzag’s elite cavalry. The Human archers also had their sights set on the Wolf Riders, but a fireball from the Goblin Spellcaster inflicted 2 casualties, removing their rank bonus and weakening their overall combat effectiveness.
The Human Archers still attempted the shot, but it was to no avail.
Seeking to shore up one of the oathmarks, Urzag’s elite Dwarf Engineers constructed a temporary fortification in preparation for Prince Roderick’s eventual charge with his spearmen.
Meanwhile, Roderick’s forces were focusing all their efforts on stopping Urzag’s wolf riders. The Human Wizard attempted to cast fireball, but the flame fizzle and failed in his hand.
The rest of the turn passed fairly uneventfully, other than a terrific volley from the Elf Archers on the far flank, taking out 4 Goblin Soldiers. Requiring an 8 or higher on their morale test, the Goblins stood firm, determined not to disappoint their leader as they had last game.
Going into turn 3, Urzag’s plans hinged on winning the initiative, otherwise the Dwarf Engineers beside his unit could charge him and deny the Wolf Rider’s their activation. Luckily, the tides of battle had turned in his favour.
Winning the initiative, he charged into the rear of the Elf Spearmen.
The face of an Elf who is about to have a bad time.
With the charge coming from the rear, it was not possible for the Elves to shield against it, but they could let their champion fight for them, giving them 3 combat dice at Fight 5 rather than 1 at Fight 3. They’d be hitting the Goblins on a 7.
The Goblins, on the other hand, would be rolling 5 dice and hitting the Elves on a 4.
Both units would get a Champion Die – this could be bloody…
And bloody it was. 5 Elves fell, but failed to strike a blow on the Wolf Riders. Sensing this might be their last chance to fight, they spent a Battle Honour to reroll a die, hoping to at least take a Wolf Rider with them, but failed to get the required 7+. In order to hold, they needed to roll a 9+ on two dice, but failed the morale test and were pushed an inch forward by the Wolf Riders.
His attack on the centre had failed – Prince Roderick would have to focus on the flanks. He ordered his Elf Archers to fire upon the Goblins, but a roll of four 2s (in itself quite impressive) saw their arrows fall harmlessly on the ground a few feet infront of them. Clearly they were shaken after seeing so many of their brethren fall.
Unfortunately, their lapse in concentration gave the Goblins a chance to charge the approaching Human soldiers. Fortunately the combat ended with just one casualty a piece, and neither unit broke, so the Elf Archers could breathe a sigh of relief.
Prince Roderick’s Human Archers attempted to take out some of the Wolf Riders, but their arrows fell short, while Brennon and his unit of Dwarf Soldiers regained their composure ready to advance again.
Surrounded at the centre of the board, the Elf Spearmen finally fell from a volley of Goblin arrows. Their marksmanship had been astounding this game, clearly worth of a Battle Honour should they survive!
In vengeance, a volley of Elf arrows took out 2 Wolf Riders, but Urzag’s unit were unshaken by the loss of their comrades. You can always find more Goblins!
The turn ended with some final manoeuvring, but it was clear that Prince Roderick was fighting a losing battle.
Prince Roderick’s forces gained the initiative, and perhaps things weren’t looking so bleak. Urzag held the centre, but his flanks were vulnerable. However, Urzag’s Wolf Riders remained a threat. Roderick hoped a volley into their rear from the Elf Archers would cause some real damage, but unfortunately they only caused a single casualty and the Goblins easily passed their Morale Test.
This failure to cause any real damage may have lost the battle for Prince Roderick. On the far flank, the Goblin Soldiers charge the Human Soldiers with the odds in their favour – they’ll be hitting on 6s while the Humans will be hitting on 7s, both units rolling 4 dice.
Three Humans fell to two Goblins, with the Humans pushed back into the woods and left disordered. The Goblins held firm.
Roderick’s focus remained on the Wolf Riders, and finally his Spellcaster showed his value, scorching 3 with a fireball and leaving the unit disordered.
Fortunately for Urzag (and unfortunately for Roderick) the unit regained it’s composure before he had a chance to fire upon it again, moving into position to flank Roderick’s unit.
In one last desperate roll of the dice, Prince Roderick charged into battle with the Linebreakers, hiding behind the fortifications that the Engineers had built earlier in the game. The odds were not in his favour – the Linebreakers would be rolling 5 dice, hitting on 5s, while his unit would be rolling 5 dice requiring 7s. Both units would be rolling a champion die, with the Dwarf Champion getting +1 on her roll due to the Warhammer of Starsilver.
The victory fell to the Humans – Prince Roderick’s units initially scored 4 hits, but by spending a Battle Honour for a re-roll he got it up to 5, and the Dwarf Linebreakers failed their morale roll and were pushed back 6 inches.
The result of the turn was a series of back and forth engagements. A fireball from the Goblin Spellcaster took out 3 Human Archers, while a volley from the Elf Archers took out 3 Goblin Soldiers, forcing them to take a morale test that they failed.
Prince Roderick’s Engineers, who had charged towards the centre of the battlefield, suffered 1 casualty at the hands of the Goblin archers, but held firm.
Going into the fifth turn, Urzag won the initiative, and started by rallying his Goblin Soldiers, worried at what losing them would mean for the oathmark on that flank.
Prince Roderick’s forces also sensed that weakness, sending another volley of arrows that slew 3 more Goblins, leaving the unit disordered yet again. The flank was on the brink of collapse.
Eager to shore up his other flank, Urzag was pleased to see his Dwarf Linebreakers rally, ready to face Prince Roderick’s unit in battle once more. He was less pleased to hear that the Human Soldiers on the other flank had also rallied.
The centre was holding strong, so Urzag positioned himself to charge the flank of Prince Roderick. His unit was badly wounded, but a cavalry charge, even weakened as this one was, has the potential to be devastating.
Of course, Prince Roderick had no interest in waiting for him to strike. Instead, he pressed on, charging into the Linebreakers once more.
Although the odds were better for the Prince and his unit in this battle, they fared much worse, killing 2 Dwarf Linebreakers but losing 4 Spearmen.
To make matters worse, the Goblin Spellcaster cast Weakness on them, reducing them to Fight 1!
The rest of the turn was uneventful – a volley from the Elf Archers knocked out a couple of Dwarf Soldiers, and the Human archers continued to be ineffective against any targets!
Initiative in the sixth turn fell to Roderick. The Prince’s own unit was vulnerable on the flank, but rather he instead opted to push the opposite flank, where the enemy was weakest.
The Human Soldiers charged the disordered Goblin Soldiers, and although they only inflicted one casualty it was enough to break the unit. Once again, Gobby and his Soldiers had fled the field.
As expected, his focus on one flank left him vulnerable on the other, with Urzag charging into the flank of Prince Roderick’s Spearmen. Two Wolf Riders fell to three Spearmen, with both units left disordered.
His chances of victory had been slim after his attack in the centre failed, but now it was reduced to nothing. Prince Roderick’s army limped from the field, but had left Urzag equally bloodied.
Urzag’s forces had managed to hold onto their oathmarks, but at the end of the battle had suffered more casualties than their enemy, securing a pyrrhic victory. They had managed to wipe out the powerful Elf spearmen though, an elite unit that Prince Roderick had called into battle. With units with Battle Honours, if they are wiped out you roll on a table to see what their fate is – fortunately for Prince Roderick the Elf Spearmen suffered only light casualties and will be available for their next battle.
In terms of awarding Battle Honours for the battle, there are units on both sides that are deserving and meet the requirements.
For Urzag, his Goblin Archers showed incredibly accuracy and finished off the Elf Spearmen, and as such are awarded Battle Honours (1) and the title of Urzag’s Elite Marksmen.
For Prince Roderick, his Human Soldiers on the right flank came closest to destroying an oathmark, and caused Gobby’s unit to break and rout from the battlefield. He granted them the title of Royal Guard to go along with their Battle Honours (1).
This battle had left both armies in tatters. They would need time to regroup before either force could launch an attack.
Oathmark: Battlesworn publishes on 20 August. Preorder your copy today!