Cue blurry photo....
It was a tournament at the local club - 4 games, with a knock out system to decide the winner (not that I was bothered about that... I didn't choose Ogres to win).
My first game was against Dwarves, three units in horde formation and two cannons - and we were playing scenario 6m Watchtower.
This was never going to be an easy game.
I had set up my characters to combat magic - Great Helm, Rune Maw etc - plus as neither of us knew the rules for cannons the game was pretty chaotic and hap-hazard.
For instance, my Iron Guts got pretty decimated by the cannon, and the Tyrant was killed due to a failed 'look out sir' roll - not much that could be done about that - but the Iron Guts shouldn't have taken the casualties they did as they should have stopped the cannon ball with their fat gut.
Then I shuffled about to put the tower between my units and the cannon. Which led to the cannon shooting at the Bulls in the tower. Which then led to further debate about the rules and the decision that Ogres in a tower is pretty much suicide. We agreed because I didn't know this I could move them. But it hardly mattered because the Iron Guts failed a panic test for the Leadbelchers being destroyed and ran off the table. The Bulls charged a horde of Dwarfs - since there was nothing else they could do - and I was left with 30 Gnoblars.
I pondered what I would do if I had done differently, and in that scenario with that match up, there is not a great deal I could have done. A Gorger coming on from the back might have helped.
Still on the positive side, a loss in the first round meant that I was less likely to face the cheese.
And so it turned out.
Beastmen - Pitched Battle.
The army had three small blocks and a huge horde, plus some chaff.
After the first game I was less than sure about the fighting abilities of the Ogres. And frankly I was a bit confused at the start when my opponent starts explaining the rules for fighting in rivers. I wouldn't say I didn't have any idea what he was talking about, but I figured that if he was taking the time to explain the rules to me, then maybe the best idea would be to get across the river as soon as possible and go from there.
This plan was hampered by a unit of harpies, which charged a couple of Leadbelchers as they crossed the river.
And my anxiety was further increased when he declared he was going to cast Pit of Shades on the Iron Guts. As they had the Rune Maw and the Great Helm, two things happened. Firstly he rolled a double 3, so had to take a miscast. And second we had to seek a ruling as to whether I could palm off the spell onto the Gnoblars - which after all was the reason they are on the table. The miscast inflicted a wound on both of his casters, and it was decided the template shold be placed over the Gnoblars - which were barely an inch away from the Iron Guts. But when it scattered the result was that four Gnoblars disappeared and the Iron Guts were fine.
The Leadbelchers stomped the Harpies into the ground, and the rest of the army continued to get across the river.
The poor Leadbelchers were then charged by a herd of Beastmen, and despite losing the combat managed to outrun the pursuers. They managed to rally but got charged again, and this time were forced to run off the table. However by this time the Bulls were in a position to charge the Beastmen, and they forced them off the table. While elswhere on the river bank the Iron Guts smakced another Beast herd about a bit, and the Gnoblars manged to fight off and effectively kill two small units of skirmishers.
The final turn was an epic battle for the river bank between the Iron Guts and the horde. The horde, supported by a flank charge by a Pumbagor - I really should learn the unit names for the Beastmen army - charged but the Iron Guts won the combat, driving off the Pumbagor.
Three events decided the battle.
The Beastmen cast a buff spell, it casting it the caster miscast and blew himself and the other magician up. Then my Tyrant got three hits that were all parried on a 6+. And I charged everything - the Bulls and the remaining Leadbelchers - into the combat, which performed less than admirably and effectively gave free combat resolution.
It was nice to have a sixth turn combat, and it was a game that could have gone either way, but in the end I snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.
Chaos Warriors - Pitched Battle
The Chaos army was one unit of Choosen, one of Warriors, and one of Marauders - oh and a Warshine.
The spells he got were a buff, a fireball thing, and a comet.
By this point I was going well for the wooden spoon, as was my opponent, and in truth I was less than certain about the fighting abilities of the Ogres... after all in two games the only unit that had suvived was the Gnoblars.
Now I claim not great strategic insight as to how this battle played out, but serendipidiously I happened upon something that Ogres are good at, that I never would have guessed from looking at the book.
With a comet due to come down in from of the Iron Guts at any minute, I decided that the best policy was to get away from that point at the earliest opportunity. So I ran as quickly as I could. This meant that all of the Ogres ended up moving around the flank of the Marauders. The Gnoblars, having little legs, were left behind to face the Choosen and the Warriors.
Three comets came down in the first three turns, the second hit the Iron Guts, which only made the Ogres run faster.
Luckily in placing the third comet, the Sorceror Lord miscast leading to him losing all magical ability.
The plucky Gnoblars continued their gallant duty throwing sharp stuff at the choosen, and so gallantly did they perform this duty that they drew the Choosen and the Warriors to them, leaving the Marauders isolated and facing the Iron Guts and Bulls - who were suddenly brave again, now that the sky had stopped dropping flaming lumps of rocks on them.
The Choosen charged the Gnoblars, who evaded and ran off.
The Iron Guts and the Bulls charged the Marauders. Perhaps the Marauders had lost some figures from magic or shooting, I don't recall exactly, all I know is that by the time the impact hits, Tyrant with his always strikes first sword, and the Bruiser BSB, had gone to work the Marauders were no more - they might have hit back, but I know I was a bit disapponted that the Iron Guts didn't get to attack. My opponent looked at me - he had never faced Ogres before - and said "boy! they really hit hard."
I didn't know what to say - nothing in the first two games had led me to think this sort of thing possible.
Flushed with success, there was only one thing to do....
Yeah that's right, get tot he end of a game with some living breathing Ogres.
So I did the sensible thing, and ran as far and as fast to the corner furthest from the Choosen and the Warriors.
The game ended with my Ogres flicking the 'V's at Chaos's finest with the butcher handing out buffs like sweets.
So we went to points to decide the winner.
I lost 170 points - the Gnoblars and unit of Leadbelchers.
The Marauders cost 167...... but..... but.... they had a banner.
Merde.... I've won.... I can't get the wooden spoon (stop it, stop it.... stop being competative).
This was the most enjoyable game that I have played in many a long day.
Vampire Counts - Pitched Battle
And so to the last game of the day.
The Vampires had 2 units of Ghouls and a unit of Grave Guard.
So with three games of 8th and three games of Ogres under my belt, I went into this game with a 'plan'. That plan can be surmised thusly - I was wrong to thing of Ogres as an army that can just run up the guts and win. And so I lined up on the flank with the intention of using the Gnoblars as a distraction unit, while the Ogres worked their way around the flanks.
Suffice to say the Gnoblars worked perfectly as a distraction unit. The Ogres turned out to be more than up to the job of pounding the undead. And miracles of miracles, the Ogres won their second game.
It was an enjoyable event.
And I found myself wondering why I have waited a year to play 8th edition WFB.