This will be a short battle report, haha.
Rob and I played a game of Malifaux yesterday, over at DropZone games. We chose to play a 21 Soulstone game, and I took my Lilith crew as well as a Cherub. Rob has been real excited to play Hamelin, and even painted his army before putting them on the table (very nicely done, I might add!). We flipped and got Shared Claim Jump as our Strategy, and I chose Breakthrough and Holdout for my schemes (this is our first time using schemes, I was going for simple ones).
So, we setup, and started to play.
Our first turn was pretty boring- we just moved everything towards the middle. Rob had Hamelin sacrifice a rat to draw cards, and summon a Stolen.
Eager to come to grips with my opponent, I have my Mature Nephilim start the second turn by charging one of Rob's rats, killing it and a stolen. Big mistake though. The rat respawns, and in return, Hamelin makes my Mature Nephilim charge a Terror Tot, killing it, THEN proceeds to force the Nephilim to attack Lilith, although he missed.
At this point, I've killed a Stolen, and lost a Terror Tot. Rob can keep bringing Stolen back, if need be, however, so it's not a big loss for him. I decide to be aggressive, and have Lilith charge in, and manage to kill Nix (his doggie).
In return, Rob's rats begin swarming Lilith. And here's where it gets a little.. strange, I guess. They take a point of damage to reposition themselves around her (they can't move then attack, because they are Slow), attack her, and on a hit, damage her, give her a Blight Token, and cause her Black Blood to trigger... killing all the rats, respawning them, and letting them attack her again during a later activation (they can't receive Slow a second time, after all). By the end of the turn, they had easily killed Lilith (although it took them another respawn, I believe).
At this point, I looked at the board- I was outnumbered, I had no way to stop the rats from easily killing the Mature Nephilim next turn, and couldn't score enough VP from my schemes to win, so I conceded.
I'm... at a bit of a loss for what to do against Hamelin. It doesn't feel like an even matchup, but I feel like I probably do have options to play against him to at least make the game... well, a game. First, I need to stop being so aggressive. Charging in like I did was extremely stupid. Second, I need to take the advice I've been giving Rob every time he talks about the trying to beat Lilith with Rasputina- I probably need to spread out a lot more. Hamelin needs all of his things within 6" of him. If I spread out, I may be able to make it difficult.
Also, I need to add some versatility to my crew. I need some ranged threat, and I'm guessing for now, that's going to be Tuco. If I can get some damage on Hamelin with shooting, I might be able to make it a closer game, as well.
So, there's certainly options, but yeah, it felt ridiculous playing the game, once the rats started doing their thing. Of course, I'm not alone in the concerns about the matchup. And there are a lot of threads about Hamelin himself, so one hopes that maybe a small tweak will be made (well, at least I hope so :) ). But still, I'll give it another try, and try a bit more cautious approach before I get too worried about it. Maybe hope for a different Strategy (something where the objectives are spread out?).
After this game, it should be noted, Rob and I taught BK how to play, and he took my Lilith crew against Rob's Rasputina crew, and pulled off a win. BK seemed to enjoy the game, and hopefully will have his upcoming crew (Jakob Lynch) ready to go soon!