Last friday I played AoF:S with my kids. A third game that week and probably sixth to eighth ever. My son (11 yo) played High Elves, my daughter (8 yo) Goblins and I played Ratmen. The table was way smaller than it should, around 33"x33". We shrunk deployment zones to 6", but as you can imagine, it still was a bloodbath.
There were 4 objectives, 2 of them close enough to table edges to be seized in the first round by Goblins and Skaven. Also, my son was somewhat too enthusiastic about putting his elven Mage on the frontlines. With my daughter's lucky roll, he was swiftly killed by a Goblin Spider Rider (Poison!).
Meanwhile, at the table outskirts, some ratmen Warriors led by Warlord and Warlock encountered a River Troll by the outhouse — and despite their best efforts, failed to do any harm to it. The Troll, on the other hand, easily disposed of the Warlock. The elves, now much more cautious, seized the third objective in a location well protected from other warbands by surrounding tall walls.
And it seems I reached max number of attached pictures, let me see if I can add more in separate messages...
Thus, a second round started. The "outhouse team" finally defeated the Troll, but not without the Warlord suffering two wounds. Battle on the main market was joined by elven Archers who sniped the combatants from the alleys. Adding insult to injury, they were joined by a Prince (with Wizard (1) trait), who nuked the goblins with Quench. By the end of the round, out of two Goblins units, a Spider Rider, a Rat Ogre and a Grenadier, only a single Gobbo survived, bleeding from three wounds(!) and falling unconscious. This meant goblins fell below half their initial number of units and started testing morale... and all failed. Except of course the unconscious Goblin spearman, but my daughter, unsurprisingly, lost all interest in game at that point and went to sleep.
Seeing how I had only two units in the third round, it seems I was rolling for morale too and lost my Warriors to panic? Maybe? I don't recall loosing them in a fight.
Third round was very short. Perhaps I could hold out for some more time with my Priest, relatively safe at the townhouse's second floor, but I decided it's just delaying the inevitable, as with two units left I have no manpower to retake any of the objectives. All I could do was to go out with a bang. Thus, the Priest exited the building and... got massacred by another Quench. My Warlord was able to take down one of the elven Elites, getting sort-of-almost-close to the much hated Elf Prince, but unsurprisingly, he too paid with his life. With the last ratman down, the game was over.
All in all we're still new to the game, we kept forgetting half of the rules (both Goblin units had battle standards we never took under account) and with my kids being, well, kids and me being a good dad, no one cared for any advanced tactics nor formulating any intricate plans. With that taken under account, these were our conclusions:
- magic (and especially the elven Quench spell) is incredibly powerful. Reading this forum I got the impression it's a conscious design choice and I have no problem with that, but let me make a mental note to self: Wizards are top priority targets. - High Elves are frighteningly effective in combat. Between Archers having 30" range, Elites hitting on 3+, versatile Guardians, flying Mage and the Quench spell, there's very little in terms of weak spots. Playing on a standard size table, Goblins and Ratmen could probably count on outmaneuvering Elves (with units such as Spider Riders or Grenadiers), but a direct clash is hopeless. Today we played with the same teams and my observations were pretty much confirmed, with the Quench taking out my daughter's Night Shaman in the first round. Too bad we had to end the game prematurely during turn two, since it seemed that avoiding open engagement with Elves is working.
Ah, at the end of the game we rolled to see if the sole remaining goblin will break and flee. He didn't!