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woensdag 19 oktober 2011

Ogre Kingdoms - Army Builds part 1

How cool are these?
Ogres come in a variety of different flavours, as the picture can attest. An ogre can pretty much fit in anywhere, being mercenaries, although wherever an Ogre is, he always pretty much does the same things: fight and eat.

I have pretty much settled on the list I'll be using for the upcoming tournament, and I very much doubt I'll be changing it more than finetuning it, but recently I was thinking about some other builds that can be made with the new book. After fiddling with the points and looking at different concept, I came up with two lists that a) I would feel pretty comfortable using myself and b) give you a fair chance of victory as well.  

Now I'm sure there are other options in the book that work and work well for some, but these are the three builds (including my tourney build) I would expand my Ogre Kingdoms collection around.

As seems fitting when talking about lists on the interwebz, I've tried to come up with some names for the list. In this article I will be looking at the first of these:

The Smashmouth Ogres!

When I think of Ogres one of the metaphors that comes to mind immediately is that of a power running game in American Football. For those unaware of that is, basically it means giving the ball to your strongest runner and having him run straight up the middle of the field, following his run-blocking linemen who brush aside any defenders trying to bring down the ballcarrier. A power runningback is almost impossible to bring down and will try to run over just about anyone trying to tackle him. Not for him the shifty cuts, stutter steps, and fancy pirouettes that are typical of some other types of backs. The power back is a no-nonsense, punch-you-in-the-face-till-you-step-aside, diesel locomotive of a runner, and I think (and Blood Bowl seems to agree with me) Ogres are ideally suited for this type of play. Watch this for an (the?) example of what I mean.

The list, unsurprisingly, is blunt and brutal, focusing on bringing as much power as possible along a narrow frontage. This has the dual purpose of making it harder for your opponent to bring his entire army to bear to stop your force, and gives you a better chance to break through your opponent's line.

I'll give you the list first and then talk about why I chose what:

Slaughtermaster, lvl 4
Butcher, lvl 2

9 Ironguts, full command, Banner of Discipline
9 Bulls, ironfist, full command

4 Mournfangs, ironfist, heavy armour, Champion, Standard Bearer, Dragonhide Banner
2 Mournfangs, ironfist, heavy armour, Champion
2*2 Sabretusks

2 Stonehorns

This brings you a shade under 2400 pts. You'll notice I haven't bothered giving the characters any equipment or assigned Lores. I've chosen the characters I think are the best all round choices for any OK army. The other build has these same characters. The reasons I chose these are that magic is an important part of the game (as I explain here), and any Ogre army will benefit from having a BSB around. Heck, there are very few army builds in Fantasy, period, that don't benefit from having a BSB!

On to why I chose the rest. Like I explained, the purpose of this army is to hit the opposing army with overwhelming and unstoppable force. Enter the Stonehorn and the Mournfangs. Both of these units excell at this role. They are fast, rock hard, and can dish out an amazing amount of damage when they charge. They still do a fair amount of damage the turns after the charge, but their optimal use is when they charge.

Stonehorns are durable thanks to T6, W6 and Stone Skeleton. One of the main counters to a large monster are war machines, cannons in particular, and the Stonehorn is extra resillient to these weapons. Combine this with a 4+ armour save which will help him deal with small arms fire and it becomes clear why the Stonehorn is such a resillient beast.
Mournfangs are Ogres with a 2+ armour save. That's really all that needs to be said about their resillience. T4, W3 and a 2+ save should see them shrug off everything but save-ignoring missile attacks, and in combat they become even more formidable.

Offensively both units can do a great amount of reliable damage thanks to impact hits. S6 and S5 for the Stonehorn and Mournfangs respectively, and there are very few units who like to be on the receiving end of those charges. And that's before you even roll for normal attacks and (thunder)stomps! The damage potential of these units is staggering.

Now, the one thing that is better than taking one each of a good unit is taking two of each. Facing one Stonehorn is annoying and will cost you opponent a fair bit of resources to get rid of. Facing two and you'll pretty much gaurantee one will hit your opponent's line T2 (T3 at the latest). Same goes for the Mournfangs.

The Bulls and the Ironguts are there to, of course, fill up the mandatory Core points, but also are used as a Second Wave force, hitting anything the Stonehorns and Mournfangs don't crush flat.

The way I see this army deployed in a neutral setting is the two Stonehorns and the four Mournfangs on one flank, protected towards the centre by the blocks of Ogres. The two Mournfangs have flank protection duty on the other flank. Two Mournfangs are still a very annoying unit and will give any type of pure flanking unit a tough fight any day. The Sabretusks are spread through the army, used as redirectors or mage hunters.

T1 will see this army advance, with the Smashmouth flank positioning itself for charges T2. This will give your opponent one or two turns to deal with your flank. Make sure you advance one unit a bit further than the other two, so in case your opponent tries to bring the fight to you, you can counter charge next turn. Once you have started munching through units on the flank you can start moving your way sideways up the opposing army.

Of course, this army is far from invincible. There are numerous options to deal with an army like this. But ask yourself this: if you would be faced with this army using your bog standard tournament list, how you would stop it?

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