Age Of Sigmar Path To Glory Report 5: Maggotkin Vs More Gravelords

Welcome, players and fans of Games Workshop's various tabletop games! I have been immersed in an ongoing Path To Glory narrative campaign for Age of Sigmar, Games Workshop's big fantasy wargame. For the past few weeks, I have been playing the narratively-driven campaign system at the 600-point limit, which, as expected for those in the know, severely limited my options for hiring my disgusting, yet disgustingly costed Maggotkin of Nurgle units. Nevertheless, at Just Games Rochester I have managed to defeat a warband of Stormcast Eternals, a retinue of Soulblight Gravelords, a second distinct warband of Stormcast, and a squadron of Seraphon lizardfolk.

As I entered the 1,000-point bracket, where I will be for the next three weeks after this one, I had a bit of trepidation. Our previous warlord, the Lord of Blights named Felch, has retired to make room for Daisy Hyacinth Sh!tmonger III, a Great Unclean One with a Doomsday Bell and a Plague Flail, but I rehired Felch to start him from scratch. I also hired a second unit of Putrid Blightkings for later weeks' growth. But that's not what you want to read about – I am certain you want the action. And action you shall have!

The battlefield before the rise of the Soulblight. Photo credit: Josh Nelson, taken during a Path To Glory campaign for Age of Sigmar, the fantasy wargame by Games Workshop.
The battlefield before the rise of the Soulblight. Photo credit: Josh Nelson, taken during a campaign battle for Age of Sigmar, the fantasy wargame by Games Workshop.

My opponent, Brian, is a cautious yet strategically-minded player who led a sizable and rather formidable legion of Soulblight Gravelords. The army composition was as such:

Army Faction: Soulblight Gravelords
    – Army Type: Legion of Night
    – Triumph: Indomitable
LEADER
Necromancer (125)
    – Spells: Invigorating Aura, Prison of Grief
Vampire Lord (140)
    – Spells: Invigorating Aura, Amaranthine Orb
Vampire Lord (140)*
    – General
    – Command Traits: Unholy Impetus
    – Artefacts: Arcane Tome
    – Spells: Invigorating Aura, Soulpike
BATTLELINE
Deadwalker Zombies (115)
Dire Wolves (135)*
OTHER
Blood Knights (195)*
Grave Guard (140)*
CORE BATTALIONS:
*Vanguard
TOTAL POINTS: (990/1000)
Meanwhile, my new army configuration for Path To Glory looked like this:
Army Faction: Maggotkin of Nurgle
    – Army Subfaction: Befouling Host
    – Grand Strategy: Spread Rampant Disease
    – Triumphs: Bloodthirsty
LEADER
Great Unclean One (495)*
    – General
    – Command Traits: Pestilent Breath
    – Doomsday Bell and Plague Flail
    – Artefacts: The Witherstave
    – Spells: Fleshy Abundance
BATTLELINE
Putrid Blightkings (250)*
-Veteran Ability: Fleet of Foot
-Veteran Ability: Unnatural Regeneration
Plaguebearers (150)*
OTHER
Nurglings (105)*
CORE BATTALIONS:
*Battle Regiment
TOTAL POINTS: (1000/1000)
Our battle plan within the impending Age of Sigmar game was Sudden Assault, which divided the board into quadrants and provided victory points for each quadrant controlled by a player at the end of each round. I played as the Custodian, which alongside my Befouling Host subfaction allowed me to start the game with two Feculent Gnarlmaw terrain features. Brian started the game with many summonable units in reserve. They all were in reserve until Battle Round 2, when the last of them, the pack of Dire Wolves, were sprung from the gravesites that were scattered across the board.
The battlefield after the rise of the Soulblight. Photo credit: Josh Nelson, taken during a Path To Glory campaign battle for Age of Sigmar, the fantasy wargame by Games Workshop.
The battlefield after the rise of the Soulblight. Photo credit: Josh Nelson, taken during a campaign battle for Age of Sigmar, the fantasy wargame by Games Workshop.

While for the first three turns of this Path To Glory game I was behind by all of 1 victory point, I had also been holding myself back from engaging with the Soulblight forces out of worries of retaliation with greater might that I was actually facing. As a result, I played my Plaguebearer Host in the absolute weakest way, which is as a speedbump. The distinction between using Plaguebearers as a blockade versus Nurglings (which were behind the northmost building on the upper-left quadrant in the above picture, and were quite good at that job) is absolutely palpable and a grave error, if you'll pardon the expression. They died to a unit of five Blood Knights in no time due to their lack of a valid defense against even a Rend characteristic of -1. However, with everything out of reserve on Brian's board, I was free to give purpose to the Putrid Blightkings in my list, who were held back to try to keep things from entering my territory via deep strike-type means. The Maggotkin of Nurgle is a very reactive Age of Sigmar faction, and this was truly a place where they could showcase this well.

Meanwhile, Daisy had other ideas:

"A bonking we will go," says Daisy Hyacinth Sh!tmonger III, before hitting the final Deadwalker Zombies with her Doomsday Bell. Photo credit: Josh Nelson, during a Path to Glory campaign battle for Age of Sigmar, a fantasy wargame by Games Workshop.
"A bonking we will go," says Daisy Hyacinth Sh!tmonger III, before hitting the final Deadwalker Zombies with her Doomsday Bell. Photo credit: Josh Nelson, during a campaign battle for Age of Sigmar, a fantasy wargame by Games Workshop.

See, Daisy was on the quadrant lines for about two turns, waiting for an opening to charge in and decimate the large swath of Deadwalker Zombies surrounding Brian's Necromancer and non-General Vampire Lord. When a lone Beast of Nurgle could replace her in the quadrant she was in, she came lumbering in and beat some face. It was about this point at the bottom of Battle Round 3 where Brian decided he needed to achieve a tactical retreat, a valid tactic if you wish to preserve your units in a Path To Glory campaign. The issue was, however, that not enough of his units were destroyed yet (as one needs half or more to be removed first before considering a Tactical Withdrawal, and out of the seven units Brian brought, only one was completely gone). The big dilemma was, however, that even with all his summonable units hypothetically gone Brian would still have to lose either a Hero unit or his unit of Blood Knights, which are not summonable and would pose a bigger issue for him to lose.

Moments before a tactical withdrawal by the Soulblight Gravelords. Photo credit: Josh Nelson, during a Path To Glory campaign battle for Age of Sigmar, the fantasy wargame by Games Workshop.
Moments before a tactical withdrawal by the Soulblight Gravelords. Photo credit: Josh Nelson, during a campaign battle for Age of Sigmar, the fantasy wargame by Games Workshop.

After taking the image above, Brian decided to go all-in on a tactical retreat and let his Necromancer be killed by Daisy while retreating his summonable units off of the table edge into oblivion. He also only had one Blood Knight by the end of the game, so had to take four casualty rolls for them and an injury roll for the Necromancer (all were entirely fine in the end). Meanwhile, I'd ended up with 12 victory points against his 7, granting me the fifth Major Victory out of five games in the campaign so far!

In the Aftermath of this Path To Glory game, I gained 13 glory points, 2 of which went into my quest, Search for the Artefact, and granted me access to a Splithorn Helm to re-equip Felch with when he comes up in my lists. At present, I have 21 GP and will be saving them for a bigger Stronghold, once that becomes wise to claim. My next quest hasn't been determined, but I'm thinking it'll be a third instance of Defend Your Realm as that's a great one for the Maggtkin of Nurgle and one I can attain with ease.

How have you been enjoying these Age of Sigmar campaign games as they're covered? Have you ever played in a Path To Glory campaign before? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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About Joshua Nelson

Josh Nelson is a Magic: The Gathering deckbuilding savant, a self-proclaimed scholar of all things Sweeney Todd, and, of course, a writer for Bleeding Cool. In their downtime, Josh can be found painting models, playing Magic, or possibly preaching about the horrors and merits of anthropophagy. You can find them on Twitter at @Burning_Inquiry for all your burning inquiries.
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