My local gaming store is hosting a Warhammer Fantasy Warbands tournament. 500 points, five rounds, Warband rules. What’s even better is that it is on a date where I may not have any other responsibilities, so I’m seriously considering taking the tournament plunge (even in this very small sort of way).
I’ve played a lot of 500 point games because my WHFB group ran a whole year-long campaign of nothing but these “Lunchhammer” armies, so I know most of the tactics you need to win. One house rule for the tournament is that only 50% of the army can have missile weapons, which is a nice touch. In the campaign I played Dark Elves occasionally and whipped up using nothing but elves with repeating crossbows and a bolt thrower. Not this time, I guess.
So the first order of business is figuring out which army to use. Having disposed of a lot of my “minor” armies recently to concentrate on a few, my selections are limited.
Dwarfs My current army of choice, the dwarfs would actually be a strong contender. I can easily put 250 points into Thunderers and the rest into Warriors and have a fairly competitive army. They have the benefit of the T4 (with small armies, there’s less likely to be high Strength attacks out there) and a high leadership (good for a character-free army). Moreover, I’ve probably got enough painted to fill out the army without much work at all.
Empire Right now these guys are out, because a new army book came out since I’ve played them last, and I’m unfamiliar with the rules.
Orcs Same problem as Empire. And Animosity and a low Leadership really hurts in small point games.
Chaos I watched my good friend Vince get pummeled in 500 point games fielding Mortal Chaos. Too expensive troops, no missile weapons, and not enough points to start buying the fun toys that Chaos has. Beasts of Chaos is another possibility, with cheaper troops and the one-trick pony that is their Raider ability. I lack the chaos hounds that would be perfect (fast and cheap) to use as the Raider unit though. Two units of gors/ungors, a minotaur, and a bray shaman could be pretty nifty, though. They’ve got speed and are skirmishers, which is nice for all those other “I’ve got 50% in ranged weapons” warbands out there.
Vampire Counts I actually don’t own this army, but a good friend (hello, Buffra) has left her little VC army here on long-term loan. That’s two units of skellies, some dire wolves, a handful of ghouls, and of course two vamps and two necromancers. I should see if I have the army book too, then play around with these guys a bit to get a feel for them.
Dwarfs remain the strongest choice for me competitively, not just because of their innate strengths, but because I’m also the most familiar with them. That is also, oddly enough, their biggest weakness, because this is an opportunity to move outside my range of familiarity (and constraints of the Reaver Princes campaign I’m in right now). Decisions, decisions…