Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Gaming on 12/4/2013 (Maelok vs Syntherion)

Ben and I played a game last night.  I've been trying to throw a lot of new casters on the table, just to get some exposure to them, and yesterday Maelok the Dreadbound was my guy.  I haven't used him yet, but I've enjoyed playing my Minions in general, so I expected that to continue. I only have a limited selection of models, so we played 35 points.

My list:
Maelok, the Dreadbound
* Bull Snapper
* Blackhide Wrastler
* Ironback Spitter
Gatormen Posse (Leader and 4 Grunts)
Swamp Gobber Bellows Crew (Leader and 1 Grunt)
Croak Hunter
Gatorman Witch Doctor
Thrullg
Totem Hunter

Again, I only have a limited selection.  With that said, pre-game, I wished I had owned a second unit of Gatormen Posse (something I feel more strongly about post-game).  I'd have no problem dropping a few solos even for a min unit of them.

Ben decided to take Convergence.  His list (and I may have some things wrong):

Forge Master Syntherion
* Diffuser
* Mitigator
* Cipher
* Inverter
* Monitor
Obstructors (Leader and 9 Grunts)
Algorithmic Dispersion Optifex
Attunement Servitors

Ben is a little limited on choices as well, since all of the releases for Convergence aren't out yet.  I feel like I may have some of the jacks messed up, but I think I'm close.  It was definitely 3 heavies and 2 lights.

Ben won the roll, and chose to go first.  I chose the side of the board with a wall just inside the Killbox (we were playing the first scenario- Destruction, I believe?).  Ben's side of the board had a nice large hill.

My game plan was basically to get the Gatormen stuck in early, pop my feat soon after, and charge the Gatormen past Ben's first line into his caster, hoping for the kill that way.  I could use Revive to bring back a Gatormen or two, should they fall, and put them in great position for the feat turn.



Our first turn was pretty boring.  Ben ran everything forward and put Reconstruct on his Inverter, and Hot Shot on the Monitor.

I ran forward as well, putting Death Pact on the Gatormen Posse, and Malediction on Maelok.

Ben's Obstructors were a bit concerned about the Totem Hunter facing them (on my right), so spread out to limit here I could go.  He spent his second turn taking a lot of shots at the Gatormen, with unfavorable deviations, and did no damage.  He also cast Synergy, in preparation for getting engaged.



I start my turn by putting the Totem Hunter into the Obstructors, killing two.  My Spitter shot at one of his Light Inverters, hoping to catch the Algorithmic Dispersion Optifex who was standing behind him.  I hit the Inverter, and deal a lot of damage, but with the boost, I only manage to get 3 damage on the Optifex (not enough to kill him with the potential Corrosion damage).  My Gatormen Posse charge into his lines, dealing pretty minor damage to his jacks, but killing a few more Obstructors (I killed 5 of them this turn).

Overall, I felt like I was in pretty good position.  My Gatormen were mostly engaged, as well as Zombified.  ARM 20, multi-wound models with Tough- should be tough to get rid of all of them.

Thrullg was in position to charge in as well, and my Bull Snapper and Maelok were right behind as well, spreading out a few Spiny Growths on the Gatormen.


Ben starts off by popping his feat, giving his army Weapon Platform, as well as free charges.  He then proceeds to start beating Gatormen down. By the time he's done, he's managed to wipe out the unit.  He even had attacks to spare!  Not good.  After considering conceding, we continue on.  His Obstructors kill the Totem Hunter easily, and he shoots some more, to no real effect.

I'm a bit unsure how to proceed at this point.  I don't really have a good way to fight his heavies- the Wrastler could kill one, maybe, but I'd lose him next turn.  My beasts haven't taken any damage thus far, however, but I decided my best bet was to try for the caster kill.

I start by activating Maelok, who pops his feat, walks forward towards one of this light inverters, kills it with a melee attack, and then casts Venom at Syntherion, dealing a few points of damage.  Thrullg then charges through his army at Syntherion, dealing a bunch more.  My Spitter activates, walks forward, and shoots at Syntherion as well, dealing even more damage!  At this point Syntherion is down to about 6 health, but he's Corroded.  Unfortunately, I'm out of attacks to throw at him.

I have my Wrastler charge one of his heavies, hoping to wreck it and keep Maelok safe.  I fail to kill him, however, and the systems I knock out just get auto-repaired away.

However, Ben's inverters are really slow, and can't get to Maelok.  They do manage to kill the Wrastler without a whole lot of effort, however.  He throws the Obstructors around the Spitter and Maelok, trying to tie me up so I can't make another play at Syntherion, while his jacks get into better position.

Well, I'm still desperate at this point, although I'm pleased I have another turn to do try for the win.  I start by having the Witch Doctor Sac Strike (using a Swamp Gobber) an Obstructor off the table, giving me room for the Spitter to walk out and attempt a shot at Syntherion.  Unfortunately, he misses, hurting my plans.  I have Maelok throw a double boosted Venom at Syntherion, bringing him down to about 4 health.  With 2 fury left, I debate my options.  If I try for the Venom, and fail, there's not much doubt his inverters can kill me.  But even with the fury on him, it's looking bleak.

I decide to go for it.  I need to roll a 9 to hit, which I get.  He's got 4 health, but it's also dice-8 for damage.... but then I roll an eleven on two dice, bringing him down to one!  With Syntherion corroded, it's just a hope that the effect doesn't expire...

...which it doesn't.  Syntherion dies, and I take the victory.

This is the first time I've ever killed a caster by Corrosion, but yeah, it was a really really long-shot victory.  With that said, I did have a lot of fun using Maelok, and I'm genuinely excited whenever I see Convergence on the table.

This matchup was really tough though- I mentioned before the game that I thought this would be a really really tough matchup, which still feels true.  I could have definitely played better- when I lost all of my Gatormen, it's because I threw all five up them up into the engagement.  Had I kept one back, I could've revived some over the course of the game, which may have dragged the game out longer, but certainly have kept it more even until the end.  Next time I put him on the table, I'll keep that in mind.

After this game, we played a game of Hordes: High Command with Rob and Brad.  I ended up taking Skorne, and I came BADLY into last place.  I'll talk more about that at my LCG blog, Kneel, Exhaust, Corrupt.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Hobby progress for March, 2013

This month:

Malifaux:
* Re-based Neverborn Malifaux Cherub.

Warmachine/Hordes:
* Unit of Cryx Necrosurgeon and Stitch Thralls assembled
* Unit of Cygnar Mechanics assembled
* Unit of Cygnar Long Gunners + UA Assembled
* Cygnar Black 13th assembled
* Cygnar Journeyman Warcaster assembled
* Taryn di la Rovissi assembled
* Rhupert Carvolo, Piper of Ord assembled
* Bull Snapper assembled
* Skorne Cyclops Shaman assembled
* Sylys Wyshnalyrr assembled
* Anastasia di Bray assembled
* Orin Midwinter assembled
* Eiryss, Mage Hunter of Ios assembled

Friday, March 8, 2013

X-Wing battle report from 2/20/13

Unfortunately, we didn't have the Wave 2 stuff back in February, but nonetheless, BK and I played a game of X-Wing, and had a blast doing it.

My list:
"Howlrunner" w/ Swarm Tactics
"Mauler Mithel" w/ Swarm Tactics
Academy Pilot
Academy Pilot
Academy Pilot
Academy Pilot
Academy Pilot
Total Squad Points: 99

This is just a basic TIE Swarm.  I took a more useful set of upgrades this time, however- Swarm Tactics actually get my ships shooting before several other pilots, and it was definitely helpful in this game.

BK's list:
Luke Skywalker w/ R2-F2
Rookie Pilot w/ R2 Astromech
Rookie Pilot w/ R2 Astromech
Gold Squadron Pilot w/ Ion Cannon Turret, R2 Astromech
Total Squad Points: 99

3 X-Wings and a Y-Wing.  R2-F2 with Luke makes him pretty tough to kill, and the R2 Astromechs should give the X-Wings more maneuverability.   I am happy to see the Y-Wings in the list, of course.

Turn 1:

A quick note about our setup- I basically set up everything right in the middle, as you can see from the picture.  BK put Luke Skywalker and the Y-Wing off to my right, and the two Rookie Pilots off to my left.  It was different than I'm used to seeing, so I was eager to get into action.

Regardless, our first turn is of course, uneventful.  We both move forward towards the center.  Exciting.


Turn 2:

I have a choice here.  I could go to my left, crush the Rookie Pilots, but then I'd have Luke and a Y-Wing behind me, which could really suck (getting hit with an Ion Token, then having Luke move to range 1 and Target Locking would be a dead TIE a turn, I'm sure).  I decide to bank to the right, and take on Luke early.

Unfortunately, my piloting skills suck.  A bunch of my ships run into themselves, but in general, I do manage to get my ships pointing the right way.

Both of BK's groups of ships turned slightly and headed towards the center.

We exchange some long range shots to little effect- the sole casualty is a single shield is taken off the Y-Wing.



Turn 3:

Well, it's action time.  I figure that BK's ships are likely to bank to their right, and rejoin their buddies.  However, I didn't want to fully commit to that way, so I tried to slightly go BOTH ways.  Because the ships are already in position to not fall on top of one another, I actually get to take actions with everyone.  Those actions, however, are 7 Evade actions.  Seven.  Yes, exciting.

BK's left group of X-Wings is forced to send one of them through the asteroid, but doesn't take any damage.  The Y-Wing does bank to his right, but Luke goes straight forward, depending on his high agility to see him through the firestorm.

Well, he's right there.  A few TIEs shoot at Luke, but fail to do any damage, and in return he deals a point of damage to one of my Academy Pilots.

On my left, I'm a little more successful- my massed shooting takes all the shields off the Y-Wing, and get a Critical Hit onto the starfighter (something minor).  BK's Rookie Pilots deal two points of damage to an Academy Pilot as well.

So, three turns in, I'm in position to start hurting the Y-Wing, and I'm taking damage on my TIEs at a fairly mediocre rate.  Not looking too bad, so far.



Turn 4:

Alright, what to do now?  I'm fairly unsure about how well I can hurt Luke without sending every ship after him, and decide to give up on that for now, and focus on the other ships.  I send my guys to the left, and try to spread out to cover as much of the board with firing arcs as possible.

BK sends his ships basically right into the middle of my lines.

I start off with some shooting at the Y-Wing with Howlrunner and a Swarm Tactic'd Academy Pilot, but fail to accomplish anything.  Luke follows with a shot on Howlrunner, hoping to lower the effectiveness of my entire fleet, but fails to put any hits through (2 hits and 2 evades, I believe).

Mauler Mithel, however, has much better luck and lays into the Rookie Pilot right in front of him, rolling up four hits (to no evades), destroying him, and giving the Imperials the first confirmed kill of the match.

The Academy Pilot I had used Swarm Tactics on with Mauler also finds some success, and deals two damage to the Y-Wing right in front of him.

The Y-Wing gets a little revenge, however, and manages to put an Ion Cannon shot into one of my Academy Pilots, making my maneuvering a little more annoying next turn.

Unfortunately for said Y-Wing, he doesn't get to stick around and take advantage of it, as my remaining Academy Pilots bring him down.


At this point, things are looking pretty good.  I've killed two ships, and although I've taken small amounts of damage on a few of my TIEs, I haven't lost any.  If I can get my ships pointing the right direction, I should be able to depend on my weight of shots to carry the day.

Turn 5:

Every one of my ships turns around, except for the one that had an Ion counter.  BK's ships slowly move up into the teeth of my squad.

My shooting is all at long range, and I fail to accomplish anything.  BK's limited shooting is much more effective, however, and his Rookie Pilot puts two damage on an undamaged TIE (unfortunately, the only one he could get in his firing arc), both of which are critical (I don't remember the exact effects).



Now, ships are about to get close, which means things could get very ugly.

Turn 6:

And they do.  I screw up all of my maneuvering, meaning almost none of my ships actually get actions (smooth), but unfortunately for BK, that's all that goes wrong this turn.

My shooting starts fairly weak- one of my Academy Pilots, shooting with Howlrunner's Swarm Tactics take a shield off of Luke, who fires back and gets FOUR hits... which I then proceed to evade all but one of.

My next shot takes two shields off the Rookie Pilot, who's shooting does nothing.

I finish my turn with two Academy Pilots, each shooting at Luke.  Three shots apiece.... and each rolls three hits.  Luke can't keep up with that kind of rolling, and gets destroyed.

With only a single Rookie Pilot facing off against my entire force, even damaged as they are, we decide to call it.

Thoughts:

This will probably be the last time I run a TIE swarm in a friendly match for some time.  I'm really too eager to try all the new ships, and I really want to try running multiple TIE Advanced and see how they perform, as well as using the new Wave 2 ships.  Running all these TIEs was fun, of course, but I want to try something different.

It's hard to say what I did wrong or right about this game - I got so lucky with dice at times that it didn't matter what I chose (killing Luke, for instance was almost purely luck).  Obviously, I really REALLY need to work on my maneuvering, since I spent two turns without actions, practically.  My overall game plan worked better than my last TIE Swarm game (I didn't lose Howlrunner right away, for instance), so that's progress.

So yeah, next time I play as the Imperials, look for a something with more variety as my list!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Malifaux Battle Report, 2/6/13, Sonnia vs Mei Feng

Rob finally got the opportunity to break out his new Mei Feng crew last month, and challenged me to a game.  Clearly terrified of my Lilith crew (he insists he thinks Lilith would be too easy for him to beat, but I know the truth ;) ), he suggested I take Sonnia, so I did so. We ended up playing a 30 Soulstone game, as well, since I was a little limited in my model selection for the moment.

To start with, my crew:
Sonnia Criid -- 6 Pool
Francisco Ortega
Samael Hopkins
Watcher
Witchling Stalker
Witchling Stalker
Witchling Stalker

I don't really have a lot to say about my list- it's her starter box + Fransisco (I figured I could use some extra ranged options) + a Watcher (to help offset bad luck).

Rob's crew:
Mei Feng -- 8 Pool
Emberling
Kang
Metal Gamin
Rail Worker
Willie, the Demolitionist

Admittedly, although I've read the Ten Thunders book, I only had a minimal amount of knowledge of what all the models did.  I did know Mei Feng could combo a lot, however, so I needed to keep an eye out for that.

After flips, we ended with Shared Claim Jump as our Strategy (whoever had more models within 3" of a counter in the center of the table scored points).  We each had two Schemes, which we both announced: I chose Bodyguard (Sonnia) and Raid.  Rob chose Bodyguard (Mei Feng) and Grudge (Fransisco).  We deployed in the corners, and the only thing notable about our terrain was that there was a lot of buildings.

Turn 1:

I win Initiative, and basically move everything towards the center.  I send my Witchling Stalkers forward as a sort of picket line, hoping to create a wide area of Disrupt Magic auras everywhere.  The rest of my models end up moving behind them.

Rob's activations involve Willie using Clear Out off Kang to move everyone forward a few inches, but Rob basically decides he had screwed up his deployment, and ends up just moving everything towards the center instead of more fanciness.


Turn 2:

Rob wins Initiative, even though I start by flipping a 12 (he manages to flip a 13).  Grrr!

Willie starts off the turn by double walking towards the middle of the table, to catch up to the action.  In addition, he puts a bomb up close to my forces.  I respond by having the central Witchling Stalker use Defensive Stance and his Disrupt Magic aura before moving a little towards the middle, hoping to make life a little difficult for Rob's force.

Rob activates Mei Feng and the Emberling next.  The Emberling walks up and tries to throw up a Vent Steam... but is sadly is in range of the aura, and fails.  Mei Feng is able to move up, stay out of the aura, and cast it, however, providing her with some protection.  I respond... by having my Witchling Stalker on my side of the building do the exact same thing as his brother.

Rob has a Rail Worker move in front of Mei Feng, presumably to block line of sight to her.  I activate my Watcher, who lets me look at the top two cards of my deck.  One of them happens to be the Black Joker, which I gladly throw on the bottom of my deck.

Rob parks his Metal Gamin next to Mei Feng.  If only I had decent blast shots!  I have my last Witchling Stalker do the same thing as his buddies, creating quite the area of magicless-ness.

Kang ends up going after the closest Witchling Stalker to me, but with Defensive Stance up, isn't able to put shovel to flesh.  Finally, given that I have all the activations left in the round, I attempt to go a little offensive.  Sammael starts taking shots, and manages to kill Willie, who unfortunately explodes, damaging the two closest Witchling Stalkers and Fransisco for two.  Fransisco follows up by firing at the Rail Worker, doing a few points of damage.

Sonnia spends the turn... basically doing nothing.  I don't know that I have a good early game plan for her, haha.

Turn 3: 

Rob wins Initiative again.

Rob starts by having his Rail Worker charge a Witchling Stalker, and detonates the previously placed bomb, killing the two central Witchling Stalkers, himself, and Fransisco.  That is really really unpleasant.  Needing to delay for an activation, to get his guys into range, I have my remaining Witchling Stalker use Defensive Stance, Disrupt Magic, and have him take a swing at Kang, dealing two damage... which doesn't really matter since he recovers from it whenever he activates.

Rob's Metal Gamin activates, and double Walks over to my side of the board.  I use the Watcher to move forward and help prepare my deck for the inevitable- revealing a 13, which I leave on top of my deck.

Rob then activates Mei Feng and the Emberling.  The Emberling walks up and Vents Steam, just staying out of the Disrupt Magic aura.  Mei Feng walks forward, casts Iron Skin on the Metal Gamin, and walks again.

I start salivating, hoping to put a ton of damage on Mei Feng.  Eagerly, I activate Sammael, and declare I'm going to Rapid Fire, and make the first flip... then remember that I haven't used his Flaming Bullets spell.  I also forget about his Arcane Hunter ability (so a net +2 Cb and +3 Dg I screwed myself out of).  As it was, Rob is forced to spend a few Soulstones, but even so, I still put 2 damage on him.  Honestly, had I remembered to use these, it would've probably cost him another Soulstone, which may have made a significant difference.

Sonnia ends the turn by activating, and throws a bunch more spells at Mei Feng, which force her to spend MORE Soulstones, but I still end up putting another two damage on her.



Turn 4:

I thankfully win Initiative.

For some reason, I activate Sonnia first, even though Sammael could've either killed Mei Feng, or forced her to spend every Soulstone she had.  I don't really remember why I did this.  Regardless, Sonnia starts throwing spells at Mei Feng, fails to kill her (but does manage to kill the Emberling), but does do a few more points of damage.

Mei Feng charges up, uses a string of Tiger's Claws strikes with the Tiger's Fury trigger, and kills Sonnia (but see below).  I end up conceding (although I guess Sammael could've made an attempt at killing her and playing for less of a loss).

Rob would've won the strategy (4 points), Mei Feng survived (2 points), but he didn't kill Fransisco in melee, meaning the final score was 6-0.  Quite a beating!

Thoughts:

I can't really say if this will end up being a good matchup.  Having some experience with her now, Rob says he should be taking more Rail Workers with her to exploit Express Line, and move her around more, which will probably make her a lot scarier.  On top of that, he did have some maneuvering issues that he'll be able to fix with a few more games of practice.

One big thing we DID screw up, however, is Mei Feng's trigger.  The end reads "perform a melee Strike against another target in melee range."  We played it that the target could be the same person (ie, Sonnia), which let him belt off the 5 attacks it took to kill her (she missed once).  With the trigger, she'd have had to kill Sammael as well (she certainly had the range), but maybe would've killed him quickly enough to save Sonnia.  Hard to say.  I started Mei Feng's activation with more Soulstones than her, so it's possible. 

Of course... Sammael would've been dead, Sonnia would've already activated, and I wouldn't have had any way to kill Mei Feng this turn, so it's hard to think the result would've changed at all.

If I remembered all of Sammael's rules, who knows what the result would've been as well.  Extra damage plus a higher stat value is really sweet, and definitely makes me eager to see him on the table again!

Regardless, the game was a lot of fun, and it's nice seeing Ten Thunders models on the table.  Also, Rob has been working extra hard to get his models painted, and the effort shows- his side of the board looked beautiful.  Definitely something to make me more eager to paint, when I have the time to do so.

We should have another game of Malifaux soon- hopefully I'll have more Guild stuff assembled, giving me some options in the game.  Maybe I can the next one a closer match :).

Until next time!

Friday, March 1, 2013

X-Wing wave 2 released

Those of you who play X-Wing no doubt have already seen that this is the case, but yeah, the new stuff for X-Wing is out!

I managed to snag one each of the new models- they were starting to sell out even as I showed up (not long after they were put on the shelves).  It's great to see this game doing so well. 

Anyway, I'm looking forward to getting the new stuff on the table.  In another two weeks or so, I'll play another X-Wing game, and I'll make sure to use the new stuff.

Hobby progress for February, 2013

(EDIT: Oops, forgot to update this as the month went along!)

This month:

Malifaux:
* One game played (using Sonnia Criid) 

Saga:
* Starter Box of Jomsvikings Filed
* Starter Box of Skraelings Filed

Warmachine/Hordes:
* One game played (eHexeris)
* Unit of Long Gunners filed
* Unit of Cygnar Mechanics filed
* A few other Cygnar solos filed
* Cyclops Shaman filed
* Necrosurgeon filed

X-Wing:
* One game played (As the Imperials)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Firestorm Armada rules released for free!

Man, I'm really behind the times.  Still, this is great news

Although the rulebook is pretty sloppy, the game itself is pretty strong, and certainly worth trying out if you have any interest in space combat.  And hell, the rules are free- you can't beat a price like that!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

First games using Venethrax, 1/30/13

Alright, time for some sweet battle report goodness.

On the 30th of last month, I broke out some Warmachine, and more specifically, broke out some Venethrax, who I had recently assembled, and had been interested in playing.

So, I enlisted Mr. Rob to play some games, breaking out his Khador.

Game 1:

The list I took for both games was this:
Lich Lord Venethrax
* Deathripper
* Stalker
* Deathjack
Bane Knights (Leader and 5 Grunts)
Bane Thralls (Leader and 5 Grunts)
Mechanithralls (Leader and 9 Grunts)
The Withershadow Combine
Bane Lord Tartarus
General Gerlak Slaughterborn
Pistol Wraith
Pistol Wraith
Warwitch Siren

Admittedly, this isn't a terrible original list compared to the list I take with ANY caster, but I promise- I'm working on getting some new Cryx stuff up and running.

Rob's list for game one was a Tier 4 Full Assault list:
Forward Kommander Sorscha
* Conquest
* Demolisher
Battle Mechaniks (Leader and 5 Grunts)
Winter Guard Infantry (Leader and 9 Grunts)
* Winter Guard Infantry Officer & Standard
* 3 Winter Guard Infantry Rocketeers
Winter Guard Mortar Crew (Leader and Grunt)
Winter Guard Mortar Crew (Leader and Grunt)
Gun Carriage

This looked pretty impressive on the table, with the Colossal and the Battle Engine.

We decided to play a Steamroller 2013 scenario, and ended up rolling Outflank.  Basically, two circles around the middle of the table, and you need 5 Victory Points to win.  You score one for controlling a circle, and two for dominating it (meaning your warcaster is in it, and it's not contested by your opponent).

Rob won the roll to go first, we set up our forces, and were off.

Turn 1:

Rob started the game off by running his large unit of Winter Guard central to the table, with a two in the zone to my right.


I had set up my caster on the right, after all, and at the very least, Rob wanted to make sure I was forced to engage him to dominate the zone.

With the Theme Force, Rob's mortars received a free pre-game move, meaning they were in position to try for acting from the first turn.  He attempted to take a long range shot at the Deathjack, missed, but the deviation stayed on the Deathjack, still doing no damage.

Sorscha cast Boundless charge on a bunch of Rob's models, moved towards the center, and was joined by the rest of Rob's forces.


I start my turn by running my entire army forward aside from Venethrax and the Deathjack.  No sense in risking the jack so early, I thought, and decided that Venethrax needed to set the town early.  He walked forward a little, and used the Deathripper to arc a Blood Rain into the Winter Guard, which hit and killed four.  Pretty good start to the game, from my perspective.


Turn 2:

Rob starts working to soften me up by shooting.  His mortars take shots at my Bane Knights, and manage to kill one.  The Winter Guard follow up by hoping over the fence, getting into position, and spray into my Banes, killing 2 Bane Thralls and a Bane Knight.  Unfortunately, Rob forgets to give his guys the Bob & Weave order (for the extra defense).

The Winter Guard who didn't spray down my Banes take a CRA shot at my Deathripper, and at 'Dice plus 5' roll snake eyes, dealing a total of 7 damage (and to add even more insult, he rolls a column that ends up disabling none of my systems).

The Conquest tries to get into the action, walks forward, and begins shooting.  He ends up killing Gerlak and drops four more damage onto the Deathripper, which I believe disabled the movement?  I can't remember.

Rob followed this up by advancing his other big model, the Gun Carriage into the zone, and shooting as well, but only managed to kill a single Bane Knight.


His turn ends with him advancing Sorscha up to cast Iron Flesh on the Winter Guard.  With Bob and Weave, that would have been incredible, but yeah, as mentioned above, it's just not fully there, sadly.


At this point, I've actually taken quite a bit of casualties from shooting, but I see that I've got a lot of space on my right to take over the zone, and scoring early will set me up for a good chance to win.

I start out by activating Venethrax, who moves into the zone, and casts a Blood Rain through the Deathripper into the Winter Guard, killing 3.  I follow with Bane Lord Tartarus charging into them, killing another one, and finish with charging by Bane Thralls and a Bane Knight into them, killing yet another one.  The poor Winter Guard decide they've had enough, and even with the Standard Bearer, fail their command check.  At this point, I'm guaranteed to Dominate the zone on my right.

The other two Bane Knights charge into the Gun Carriage and between them and the Pistol Wraith (who activated earlier) manage to deal 14 damage to it, not enough to kill it.

The Deathjack ends the turn by killing another two Winter Guard, grabbing me two more souls to use for getting into the action next turn.  I gain two control points, for dominating the right zone.


Turn 3:

Rob decides his chances are perfect for an assassination, and goes for it.  He starts with Sorscha activating, and popping her feat.  She then tries to shoot at my Deathripper, misses, and casts Iron Flesh on herself.

Rob activates the Conquest, aims, boosts, and takes a shot from the main gun into Venethrax, who I think had no focus on him (oops!).  He needs a 9 to hit, but rolls an 8, which scatters to no effect.  With his best shot to end me gone, he has the Conquest use his other shots to kill a Bane Knight, a Bane Thrall, and put 6 damage onto Bane Lord Tartarus, as well as kills one of my Pistol Wraiths.

The Gun Carriage activates, and kills a Bane Knight in combat with it.

Rob hasn't given up on his assassination though.  The Mortars both take shots again Venethrax, both miss, and Rob is forced to concede (he can't stop me from scoring enough control points to win).

So, first game over, and I still don't feel like I have any feel for Venethrax.  Plus, I really screwed up my setup.  My Mechanithralls spent the entire game behind my army, unable to find a way to get out and into the action.  We had decided to play another game, and I was determined to not make that mistake for this one.

Game 2!:

I took the same list as before.  Rob chose to run:

Vladimir Tzepesci, Great Prince of Umbrey
* Berserker
* Conquest
* Devastator
* Drago
Battle Mechaniks (Leader and 5 Grunts)
Kayazy Assassins (Leader and 9 Grunts)
* Kayazy Assassin Underboss

Pretty heavy list.  I won the roll to go first this time.

Turn 1:

I run everything forward, but have Venethrax cast Dragon Slayer on himself and advance.


Rob basically does the same thing.  Everything runs up but Vlad, who casts Hand of Fate on the Conquest.


Turn 2:

I am still out of range to do anything, and again basically run everything forward.  I can't score points this turn, so choose to get as far forward as I can to put pressure on Rob.

Rob responds by upkeeping Hand of Fate on Conquest, and getting to work.  The Conquest aims his Main Gun at the Deathripper, and hits, dealing 12 damage to my poor little jack, disabling the Arc Node.  His other shots manage to kill a Bane Thrall and a Bane Knight.  He also throws down two templates in front of my Bane Knights, to try to limit my movement.

The Berserker attempts to charge my Stalker (off far to my right), but is a few inches out of range.

Drago walks forward and kills my lead Mechanithrall (I had sent the unit into the left zone to try to keep Rob back in his zone).  Vlad joins in the fun, pops his feat, and charges a Mechanithrall, killing it.  His side steps kill another two, and his Sprints back to safety.  Rob's goal was to get forward to kill one of my Pistol Wraiths, but failing to do so, chose to get back to where he wasn't in danger.

The Kayazy activate and charge into the Mechanithralls as well, killing another two.  They were a little too far out to get at the rest of them, unfortunately.

Rob ends the turn by advancing his Devastator, attempting to threaten my right zone some.


Turn 3:

I decide that the Kayazy are probably my biggest concern at this point.  With some luck, they could get through all of my infantry, and if Rob managed to successfully contest my right zone, I'd have a hard time getting enough to the left to fight him.  So I go all in, trying to kill them.

The Bane Knights, Bane Lord Tartarus, Mechanithralls, and a Pistol Wraith are thrown at them, and I manage to kill 5 of the Assassins, plus the Underboss.  The Mechanithralls were of particular note, because with the 4 remaining, I manage to drag down two Assassins, needing elevens to hit.

The Deathjack charges and kills the Berserker, clearing out my zone for the moment.  The Pistol Wraith on my far left Death Chills Drago, saving my poor infantry from being horribly annihilated.  Whew!

With nothing in my right zone, and Venethrax right in the middle, I again dominate it, and gain 2 control points.



Rob has two objectives this turn.  First, he needs to contest my right zone well enough to stop me from winning soon, and he needs to score some control points himself.  He probably considers assassination at some point here (I don't actually know, I'm not a mind reader), but I'm camping some of my focus and have Dragon Slayer upkept by the Withershadow Combine, so I'm around armor 23.

Rob starts on clearing the left zone.  His Kayazy go off to my left more, and kill a Pistol Wraith and a Mechanithrall.

The Conquest follows up by advancing towards the middle of the table (and doesn't contest my zone, importantly), and shoots into the large cluster of troops I have, killing, when it's all over with, 3 Bane Knights, 2 Bane Thralls, 2 Mechanithralls, a Pistol Wraith, and one of his Kayazy, as well as takes a point off of Gerlak.  Not half bad!

Drago can't move and activate, so elects to move out of the way of Vlad, who charges Gerlak.  Several crappy rolls by Rob later, Gerlak eventually dies, and Vlad kills the last Bane Knight in the zone, clearing it.

He ends the turn by moving the Devastator into my zone, contesting it, and scores two control points for dominating his zone, tying us at 2-2.




Turn 4:

Unfortunately for Rob, he reminds me that I can throw models, and I happily do so, moving the Deathjack forward to throw the Devastator out of my zone (I sure wasn't going to kill it!).  I run everything else up to block the far side of my zone so that the Battle Mechaniks and the Conquest can't get into it.

I charge Bane Lord Tartarus at Vlad, but sadly, he's out of range.  The remaining two Bane Knights attempt to be heroes, but sadly, don't manage to hit Vlad.  I end my turn, and go up 4-2.

Rob realizes that he can't contest my zone, and that scoring his doesn't help him, and decides he HAS to assassinate Venethrax.  He uses Flashing Blade to try to clear the Bane Knights engaging him, but sadly only manages to kill one, meaning he has to Flashing Blade AGAIN to clear a charge path. 

Vlad charges, but now, I have all my focus camped, and prove too difficult to kill.  Casters don't count as contesting zones, and Rob can't stop me from scoring what I need to win.

Summary:

Although winning is nice, I feel a little disappointed in that I didn't really get any use from Venethrax.  I completely forgot about his feat (which isn't very good anyway), and other than a few castings of Blood Rain, pretty much didn't need to use his spells.

Rob's had a difficult time with Cryx, and as he pointed out, it doesn't matter what caster I take in the end, it's my army itself that is causing him issues.  We may end up trying to switch it up just so that I can see how I would do against Cryx.  In the meantime, I'll probably switch to Skorne for a while, just to keep my friends ;).

The Conquest didn't feel like it made much of an impact on either game, sadly.  Sure, it killed some infantry with its shooting, but I never bothered trying to put damage on it (meaning the Mechaniks did nothing through both games).  I suspect Rob needs to focus on getting the Conquest into a zone to contest it, and force me to deal with him.  With this particular Cryx list, it might actually be a problem, especially if enough of my Bane Thralls die before getting there.  The Deathjack can certainly hurt it, but I don't think I can kill it (especially with Mechaniks repairing it) before I'm crushed. 

One day, I'll get Venethrax on the table again, hopefully against a Hordes opponent, and see how much mileage I get out of him in a matchup he's designed to be more useful for.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Hobby progress for January, 2013

This month:

Dreadball: 
* All miniatures from Dreadball box are assembled
* Played a game of Dreadball, to learn the rules.
Malifaux:
* Played two games of Malifaux using my Neverborn.
* Re-based some of the Lilith crew onto Victorian bases.

Warmachine/Hordes:
* Terminus completely assembled.
* Cataphract Arcuarii completely assembled.
* Got main body of Wraith Engine assembled.
* Played two games, using my Cryx.

Hell Dorado:
* Got two of the Westerner Arquebusiers assembled. 

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Gaming from January 22nd, 2013

Played a few games on the 22nd against Rob.

First game up was Malifaux.  I took my normal Lilith list.  Rob was interested in trying out the post-errata Hamelin, and therefore took the following list:

Hamelin the Plagued -- 4 Pool
Hoarcat Pride
Hoarcat Pride
Malifaux Rat
Malifaux Rat
Malifaux Rat
Nix, the Bull Terrier
Rat Catcher
The Stolen

Using the Hoarcat Prides was a bit of a surprise, but seeing as how my experience with Hamelin was short (and frankly, unpleasant), I guess I should be expecting anything.

We flipped for Strategies.  Mine was Reconnoiter (control quarters of the board), Rob's was Plant Evidence (take (1) Interact actions on terrain on my side of the board).  Overall, I felt that the Strategies were in my favor- I have been trying to spread out my forces, which I think is important for success, and I don't think coming across the board quickly is part of Hamelin's ideal plan.

Schemes were next.  Rob's schemes were Bodyguard (Hamelin), and Plague on Malifaux (basically, turn my guys into rats).  I chose Bodyguard (Lilith) and Breakthrough (have more guys in his deployment zone at the end of the game than he does).  Off we go!

Turn 1:
I win Initiative.  I have my Terror Tot, Lelu, and Lilitu run off to my left, into a set of ruins.  Lilith moves over to my right, throwing down an Illusory Forest, and the Mature Nephilim hops over to join her.  Tuco takes a potshot at Hamelin, misses, and moves to join the group on my left.

Rob's activations were spent moving his models forward, generally, although he summoned a Stolen which he moved towards Tuco.


Turn 2:
Rob won the Initiative, flipping the Red Joker, I believe.  Rob started the turn by having Hamelin summon another Stolen, then walking back towards his corner. 

I activated Tuco next, and decided that with Hamelin backing up, Nix was the next best target.  I shot at him, and did 2 damage (but see the post-game thoughts, below), before backing Tuco out of threat range.

Nix activated next, and he Herded the rats forward, and moved a little forward himself.

We both waste a few activations, jockeying for position (Hamelin's crew generally moving a little more forward, and Lilith and the Mature Nephilim swinging out more to my left), before I finally activate Lilitu, and walk her up, and throw a Lure on a Malifaux Rat.  The rat failed to resist, got pulled foward into Lilitu's melee range, and she killed it.  Since I had pulled the rat away from Nix's Aura, the rat couldn't respawn, and this was an unpleasant (albeit small at the time) turn of events for Rob.  Lilitu ended her activation throwing a Lure at Hamelin, which forced Rob to use a card to resist (although truthfully, he could have ignored it, but it never hurts to be careful).  Rob decided to plug the gap in the ruins with Malifaux Rats, hoping to prevent future Lure shenanigans.


At turn end, I was feeling pretty good.  Lilith and the Mature Nephilim were in okay position, and weren't in danger at the moment.  In the ruins, my four models were more than capable of holding off a few rats, I figured.  If I could hold on my left, I was hoping to send Lilith and the Mature into Rob's backfield, and start doing some more significant damage.

Turn 3:
I won Initiative. I start with activating Lilith and Lelu (using Companion), and the end result is that the Rat Catcher is Lured forward and killed.  Rob has the Malifaux Rats respond by sacrificing a bunch of them to summon another Rat Catcher.

Unfortunately, the Rat Catcher is close enough to Tuco that I shoot him, deal several points of damage, and put a poison counter on him, which (with one health remaining) kills him his next activation, which Rob took immediately to force me to activate another model.

I decide it's time to get up into the action, have Lilith use Brood Mother on the Mature Nephilim (giving the Mature Nephilim the next activation after Lilith), and charge Lilith into the nearest Hoarcat Pride.  Unfortunately, my flipping wasn't very good, and the cards in my hand weren't much better, and I only deal a moderate amount of damage, leaving it alive.

The Mature follows up by charging the other Hoarcat and hits, but I trigger Knock Aside, and charge into Nix instead, killing him and ending engaged with the last Malifaux Rat.  Things are starting to look a little bleak for Rob, but with a smile on his face, he makes a move to try to even it up.

First, Hamelin activates, and after several casts, finally makes Lilith Insignificant.  No matter the result of his final activations, at least Lilith won't count for my victory conditions.  He follows this up by having his Hoarcats Prides get close to me, and successively cast Devour, hoping to snatch up Lilith, and have her Sacrificed.  Several failed attempts later, Rob looks at the board state, and concedes. 

It indeed started to look bad for him- Lilith could've handled the Hoarcats decently well, and Lure plus all my melee should have been enough to bring Hamelin down, I thought.  With that said, even without Rats, Hamelin's various tricks could've still made the game a challenge, I thought.  Still, Rob conceded, and that's the game.

Thoughts:
Well, there were several things going on here, but we should start with the thing we did obviously wrong, and this is something I didn't know about Hamelin and Nix- they are spirits!  That means they take half damage from non-magical attacks.  Turns out, I don't have many options on that front, meaning Nix may have survived, and taking Hamelin down would've been a lot tougher.  It may have been enough to change the game, truthfully, and will be something to remember for next time.

Hamelin's changes are pretty huge.  Rob's initial impression was that the changes were perhaps too much, and although there may be some truth there, it's definitely a very different model on the board than the first time I played against him.  He needs to be up near the action (so that his Nihilism aura can help out), and he needs to be up there with Nix backing up his Rats' rush into combat.  Rob moved Hamelin back during the second turn, I'm assuming to protect him from what he perceived was my Mature Nephilim and Lilith getting too close, when really he needed to get up there and depend on his Stolen to keep him alive.

The game wasn't long enough to really get a feel for my play- overall I thought I played alright, although I did get a little bottled up in the Ruins- partially because I ran Tuco into them instead of leaving him out to be a pain in Rob's backside.  I need to do a better job of keeping him out and fighting, I guess.

Dreadball:
We ended the night by getting about halfway through a game of Dreadball.  Having finally gotten everyone assembled, I taught Rob the rules, and we began playing.  I took no notes, because I was trying to keep the game moving, although the basic events were that I quickly went up +6 using the Orx, but Rob fought back, and we ended the game with me up +2 with about 7 Rushes left, and Rob with the definite momentum.

After my short experience with the game, I have to say that I really do quite like it- it's very fluid, and the action doesn't have any resets, which is nice.  Getting the occasional extra action from various cards is VERY helpful (I used cards to score both of my 3 point strikes), and although the ref didn't play any part of our game, I like the fouling mechanics, and look forward to games where they actually matter.

Anyway, thanks for reading!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Dreadball minis assembled!

Just a small note.  Finally got all of my Dreadball miniatures assembled, meaning I should be breaking this out on Tuesday.  Really looking forward to playing this!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Hamelin Errata'd!

I admit, I'm a little behind, but still: great news!

I won't say I had enough experience facing him to think he was actually broken, but there certainly were several things I disliked about him after my first time facing him, especially while using Neverborn.  Given that even the poster described them as overdue, I don't think I'm alone here.

For the most part, these are a thing of the past.  Let's see what changed:

Indiscriminant Void is much simpler, and I believe was changed to stop some funky interactions with other models.  I'm not sure, but I don't think it'll change his play a whole lot.  Instead of him being placed and sacrificing a Stolen, the Stolen is just sacrificed, Hamelin stays put, and heals up.

Nihilism is basically an aura now, which is awesome, but hurts him a little, because now he'll have to be near the objectives in order to claim them- the rats can't do it themselves.

Bully was taken away, and replaced with Ruffian, which is a badly needed balance mechanism- now Gremlins and the like CAN target Hamelin, they just have to pass a WP -> 13 duel to do so.

Fate is Meaningless (Model ignores any modifiers to its flips during its next action) was turned into a (1) action (formerly (0)).  I feel like this probably wasn't needed, especially since Useless Toy is still a (0) action, and overall probably more useful.

Haunting Melody changed to Wp->14 Duel is helpful, going against the Combat Duel total could have really sucked.

Overall, seems like a decent set of changes, at the very least making him a 'reasonable' matchup for Gremlins, plus a lot of other nice things to keep him in check.

Nix also gets the Nihilism aura, which again, is a nice balance mechanism, and gives Hamelin a way to win scenarios without necessarily being RIGHT THERE.  Sweet Taste of Failure also only works on enemy models- a pretty nice change, since you generally aren't worried about Malifaux Rats failing duels, therefore Nix has to get close to use it.

Abandon has been removed from the Stolen.  No longer can they make a model insignificant for basically no cost to the Hamelin crew (since he can create Stolen with a (1) action).

I've not seen the Rat-Catcher in action, but he's changed to be no longer Insignificant, but allowed to be added to Hamelin's crew via Affinity, and now, instead of freely killing Rats (which would give them infinite activations!), he can make them lose Slow.  Still, a really nice ability for rats, but no longer feeling sort of ridiculous.

The Malifaux Rat, I felt, was the biggest problem with the Hamelin crew.  They've changed quite a bit.  No more -Wp combat trigger for them.  No more Instinctual.  No free positive flip modifier.  No more ability to remove Corpse and Scrap counters (why?).  Instead, if an enemy model is in contact with 3 or more Malifaux Rats, that model is -2 Df and -2 Wp.  This still has a very thematic feel (swarms of rats slowing your opponent down), but is not a permanent effect.  Also, combined with the Rat-Catcher, players will still get a lot of mileage out of the Rats and get more attacks, I'm guessing.  The biggest change, for me, is their new rule: They're Just Rats.  Other friendly models can't bring them to less than 1 WD, and can't be Summoned again if killed during it's own activation.  Black Blood now kills rats dead!  No more infinite activations!  Huzzah!  Seriously though, I feel this is a fantastic improvement.

Overall, it looks like Hamelin DOES maintain his feel and style (which is what made Rob interested in him anyway), but made him more in line with other Masters in the game.  Truthfully, seems like very good changes, and certainly for the good of the game.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Malifaux Battle Report, 1/8/13 - First minis game of 2013!

Played Rob in Malifaux last Tuesday, over at DropZone.  I had finally assembled Lelu and Lilitu, so was pretty excited to finally have my 'goal' 35 Soulstone list up and running.

We flipped for our strategy, and ended with Shared Deliver a Message- basically, a member of our crew had to take a (2) action within 2" of the opponent's master.  The earlier we did it, the better.

My list:

Lilith, Mother of Monsters -- 5 Pool
Lelu
Lilitu
Mature Nephilim
Terror Tot Nephilim
Tuco

I chose to announce Bodyguard (Lilith) and Breakthrough as my Schemes.

Rob's list (I think):

Rasputina -- 6 Pool
Essence of Power
Blessed of December
Ice Gamin
Ice Gamin
Ice Golem
Silent One

Rob's schemes were Bodyguard (Rasputina) and Sabotage, both of which he announced.

We actually had a decent amount of terrain on the table, looking like a nice outpost town.

Turn 1:

I win initiative, and we basically all walk towards the middle of the board, getting into position.  I had Tuco over on Rob's far left, hoping to get a little behind him and cause some annoyance.  Rob threw up some Ice Pillars right in the middle of the board, and I gladly had Lilith walk up and kill one of them.  We ended the turn pretty far apart... but definitely close enough that next turn was going to get ugly.



Turn 2:

Rob won Initiative, and sends an Ice Gamin forward and has him turn into a statue (making him really easy to hit, but much more difficult to damage).

I have Tuco activate from the side, Veil up, and Run and Gun back, shooting at the Ice Gamin.  After a decent flip, Rob decides to play the Red Joker from his hand to cause me to miss.  I give him one of my 'huh?' stares, which he ignores, and we move on.  For the record: it turns out I didn't explain my abilities correctly, and when I said Run and Gun let's me shoot then get a charge move, it wasn't clear that it wasn't an actual charge.  I really need to work on this, to save poor Rob his high cards sometimes ;).

The rest of the turn involves me moving pretty much centrally to the table, around the ice pillar that's left (which my Terror Tot fails to kill), and Lilith walking up and dropping an Illusory Forest in front of my forces, then using my Mature Nephilim to carry Lilith back to safety.

Rob's activations involved him moving forward as well, and throwing Ice Pillars off to my left you can see the edge of one of them in the following picture.  He then had the Blessed of December move into the cover the Ice Pillars provided.  I was a little concerned about this- but for the wrong reason.  I had this feeling that he was going to have the Blessed use his Jump, and get into position for a really early message delivery.  Turns out... not so much.



Turn 3:

Rob wins Initiative, and again sends his Ice Gamin up to statue.

I, again, have Tuco Veil and Run and Gun, and finally get a hit (my first EVER hit with Tuco), putting two damage on the dastardly Ice Gamin.  Then, Tuco runs behind cover.

Rob advances his Ice Golem up, parking him just past the far right of the Illusory Forest (from my perspective).

The Terror Tot finally manages to kill the Ice Pillar facing me.  Now, you might be thinking, "Hey Asmo, isn't it only Breakable 3?  Your Terror Tot kills is on a 4+ flip?".  You're right.  It took the Terror Tot three tries (one last turn).  That was a tough pillar of ice.

Rob's Silent One advances next to the Ice Golem, and does it's healing thing, helping the poor Ice Gamin.

I finally get in on the action, and activate Lilitu and Lelu.  Lilitu begins casting Lure on the Ice Golem, and after several casts, have moved the Ice Golem close enough forward that Lilitu can attack it, and on doing so, fails to hit it.  Lelu follows up with a vicious charge, and again, I fail to hit.  Not such good flipping this turn.

Rasputina activates, and throws Ice Pillars in front of Lilith and the Mature Nephilim, most likely to prevent both of them from being able to charge (and probably kill) the Ice Golem this turn.

I, of course, am perfectly happy sending Lilith forward to kill Ice Pillars, killing one, then move back and use Brood Mother to activate the Mature Nephilim, who charges up and kills the Silent One and an Ice Gamin.  I'm pretty happy with this, of course...

...until Rob activates his Blessed of December, who Jumps forward and Sabotages the building he had targeted (and then moving into the back of the Mature, hoping to damage it next turn).  I find myself ending Turn three down 4-2 (we're each +2 because of the Bodyguard Scheme). 



Turn 4:

I win initiative, and promptly activate my Mature Nephilim, who quickly dispatches the Blessed of December, and attempts to attack the Ice Golem with his last action, but deals almost no damage.

Rob activates his Ice Golem, and finds himself having no problems hitting, dealing quite a bit of damage to the Mature Nephilim, but not quite killing him.

I have a bit of an issue here, unfortunately, as killing the Ice Golem will cause it to explode, bringing my dear Mature Nephilim down to like 2 Wounds, meaning it'd be easy to bring down.  However, I can't afford NOT to kill it, activate Lelu, and do so, damaging quite a bit of my models.

Rasputina wastes no time taking advantage of things, and flings some spells, killing the Mature Nephilim and damaging my Lelu, which his Essence of Power quickly finishes off.

With Lelu gone, my Lilitu is in a bad spot, and I figure my best bet to give myself a shot at the endgame is to move Lilith forward, sacrifice four Soulstones for two Blood Counters, and hope to summon a Lelu, sacrificing my Terror Tot.  Lilith moves up, does so, and Lilith easily makes the flip, giving me back my Lelu.

I've put myself into a pretty good position, overall.  Rob is down to just an Ice Gamin, Rasputina, and the Essence of Power, where I still have Lilith, Lelu and Lilitu, and Tuco.  If I can get to him, it's a decent match-up.



Turn 5:

This turn was fairly unremarkable.  Rob moves his guys back, to hide behind the building, and I move forward, trying to close the distance.  Lilith also throws an Illusory Forest off to my left, just in case Rob tries to go over there and fling spells at me... again.



Turn 6:

Rob wins the initiative, moves Rasputina out from behind the building, and tries to throw spells at Lilith, but is just out of range.

I'm salivating at this point, since Lilith is FAST.  And, she has the Fast Ability, so go figure.  I walk Lilith forward, and charge in, swinging happily, and deal pretty weak damage to Rasputina, and end Lilith's activation, pretty pleased with how things are turning out.

Then Rob activates his Ice Gamin, delivers the message to my now REALLY close Lilith, and goes up 7-2.  Bastard tricked me!

*sigh.  I'm a little displeased at this turn of events, but to my credit, I think I only swore once.  I do some thinking.  I'm actually right where I want to be- up in his grill.  I still outnumber him, and should have no issues killing Rasputina, I think, if the game goes another turn.  Fine, that denies him his other Scheme, keeping him to five points.  If I keep Lilith alive (not too hard to do), and get all of my guys into the zone, I can get up to four points, which is better than being shut out.  Of course, that involves the game lasting another turn- I'm not close enough with most of my guys to get them into the deployment zone this turn.  Still... 5-4 is still a loss.  Then I remember- Oh!  I can deliver a message too!  That would tie us up, and frankly, that's the best I can do at this point.

So... everything moves forward, hoping to get in on the action early next turn.  If there is a next turn.

We flip to continue the game (needing a 10+), and thankfully we flip a 12.  Whew!  One more turn.

Turn 7:

I win initiative.  I'm stuck having Lilith activate, and using Brood Mother on Lilitu.  I can't have Lilith attack Rasputina yet, because that would make me unable to deliver the message, so Lilith herself delivers it, bringing the score up to 7-3, then I swing with my last action, and almost kill Rasputina, but thankfully Lilitu is there to help, killing Rasputina AND the Ice Gamin, removing all of the Arcanists from the board.

My guys all move into Rob's deployment zone, and we end the game, tied 5-5.

Afterthoughts:

Well, that was certainly a tough game.  Rob seems to have gotten a handle on Rasputina, and although I think I have a decent handle on Lilith, she's so one-dimensional that it's hard to really handle some of these games.  I mean, Rob knows my game plan right away- he just needs to keep me at range long enough to beat me into submission.

Of course, I still have some new options I can try with Lilith, to maybe add some surprises.  There were a couple of times I thought about Transpositioning the Mature Nephilim into a place, and using Brood Mother early to get a decent charge into Rasputina.  I don't know how viable something like that is (it might just be a way to make Rasputina spend Soulstones early to save herself), but it's something I should try.

I also could try running Nekima or the Black Blood Shaman, which could give me some fun in-game choices.

Still, I'm having a blast with Lilith as is, and Rob seems to be having a great time with Rasputina.  At this rate though, he's going to be stomping me pretty soon!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

X-Wing battle reports from 12/18/12

Managed to get a few 100 point games of X-Wing in prior to the holidays, and figured I'd post about them.

First game, I played against Rob, and I took the Rebels.  This was our first time playing at 100 points, so we were both really excited about this.  I don't know what list Rob took (since he was using my miniatures, it's possible he took the list I took in the second game, but I can't recall).  My list:

Biggs Darklighter (X-Wing) w/ R2-D2.
Red Squadron Pilot (X-Wing) w/ R2 Astromech
Red Squadron Pilot (X-Wing) w/ R2 Astromech
Red Squadron Pilot (X-Wing)

The goal here is to have Biggs take the punishment early, playing defensively (since all TIEs that can shoot at him HAVE to shoot at him), hoping R2-D2 can help keep him alive, and use the 3 firepower of the X-Wings to carry the day.

For added excitement, we added an asteroid field (another new addition for us).  Certainly something that we kept in mind.

Off we go!

Turn 1:
Basically, we move moved straight up into the middle of the board. He evaded with all his TIEs, I used Focus with all my X-Wings, and we ended up too far out of range to shoot.



Turn 2:
As you can see, Rob turned slightly away, probably hoping to avoid having his fleet too split up by the asteroids.  On this turn, my squad basically turned into his fleet, while he maneuvered his squad into a much more compact formation.



Shooting begins, and Rob finds a lot of success, quickly dropping Biggs' shields, and although I manage to take the shields off his TIE Advanced, his numbers are telling, and he kills Biggs, then drops another hit on one of my X-Wings. 

Apparently having Biggs be the mandatory target of every enemy fighter is a bad idea when you move him within range 1.  Who knew?  Lesson for next time- don't LEAD with Biggs.  However, having Biggs there did allow me to use Target Lock (as you can see from the picture) without too much concern, so this sort of strategy could definitely work, I think.

Turn 3:
It's hard to explain our maneuver... err... strategy here.  We basically become entangled, although I do a decent job of keeping formation.  Unfortunately, Rob gets his guys to surround me pretty much fully, which isn't so good.



Shooting starts.  I quickly tear apart Rob's TIE Advanced, but unfortunately lose ANOTHER X-Wing, and the shields off my other two are completely shot off.



*sigh.

At this point, the person I had been planning to play (BK) arrived, and Rob wanted to go and play Malifaux (despite having a good time playing this).  I was outnumbered 2-5, and things weren't looking good, so we decided to call it.  Still, shortened as it was, I had a really good time.

So, on to game 2!

BK received a bunch of X-Wing stuff from his awesome friends, and was extra excited to play a game, and wanted to play the Rebels.  This was even more interesting, because he had never seen the Empire win, and I was definitely looking forward to correcting that.  Of course, had he arrived to see Rob's squad in action, this 'correction' would've already taken place.

My list:

Howlrunner (TIE Fighter) w/ Squad Leader
Mauler Mithel (TIE Fighter) w/ Determination
Academy Pilot (TIE Fighter)
Academy Pilot (TIE Fighter)
Academy Pilot (TIE Fighter)
Tempest Squadron Pilot (TIE Advanced) w/ Cluster Missiles.

Six Fighters should easily give me a numerical advantage, and if I keep Howlrunner alive, I can get a lot of mileage out of even the most basic of Empire starfighters.  In this game, I was smart enough to keep Howlrunner in the second wave, and not 'leading the charge', so to speak.  I'm not sure how best to use the TIE Advanced, which is why he's included.  Figure I need to practice.

BK built his own list, and eager to see some different ships in action, took some Y-Wings:

Biggs Darklighter (X-Wing) w/ R2-D2
Rookie Pilot (X-Wing)
Gold Squadron (Y-Wing) w/ Ion Cannon Turret
Gray Squadron (Y-Wing) w/ Ion Cannon Turret

Turn 1:
Basically, as it seems with every game, everyone just moved forward towards the middle, pretty much straight ahead.  Very exciting.

Turn 2:
I again move everyone straight forward, and throw a target lock on Biggs.  BK basically moved towards me as well, meaning our first shots of the game were going to be at nearly point blank range.



Our shooting goes into action, and I unload- Biggs dies, the Gold Squadron pilot loses two shields, and in return, I take almost no damage, aside from Mauler Mithel, who takes a hit from an Ion Cannon (meaning he'll be moving slowly forward next turn). 

Turn 3:
I scatter, trying to avoid the asteroids, and BK slowly turns his squad around.



I really have nothing I can shoot at, since I had to scatter, and couldn't really loop back yet.  BK's Ion Cannons have 360 degree range, however, and manage to hit Howlrunner with an Ion Cannon.  His X-Wing, which had drove forward and turned around, managed to get a second hit on Mauler Mithel as well.

For now, I'm out of position, and spread out, but thankfully, I haven't lost anyone yet, and I outnumber BK 2-1.  If I can reform, and get another attack run, I was sure I could end this game.

Turn 4:
With  Howlrunner under the effects of an Ion Cannon, I really can't reform how I'd like, so I again spread out a little, and get into position to reform the following turn- but at least this turn, I get my ships facing the correct way.  BK's Y-Wings continue their slow turn around, depending on their Ion Cannons to do the shooting, regardless of facing.



We start trading blows, again.  I manage to get a lucky critical hit on the Gold Squadron pilot, and take off his secondary weapon (the Ion Cannon), and take a shield off the Grey Squadron Y-Wing.  Howlrunner takes a second point of damage, however, but considering how out of position I am, I think the damage is pretty light.

Turn 5:
Both sides re-engage.  I get my guys back into a better position... but then, so does BK, and again, we'll be taking most of our shots at Range band 1.



We start trading blows, and sadly, I come out a little worse than BK this time around- Howlrunner dies.  Since I'm depending on him to make my Academy Pilots effective, this hurts, and the damage I deal in return (3 Hull hits on the Grey Squadron Y-Wing, and knocking off the shields of the remaining X-Wing) is substantial, but doesn't end with a dead Rebel ship.

Turn 6:
At this close a range, both of us basically keep up the pressure.  I flip most of my ships around, and keep shooting.



This still isn't favorable though- another of my TIE Fighters dies, and I deal 3 hull damage to the Gold Squadron Y-Wing... still not killing it.  I'm down to a 4-3 numerical advantage, although most of my ships are pristine, and BK's are not.

Turn 7:
We again close in, and again trade blows at close range.



This time, the shooting is a bit more favorable.  I lose my TIE Advanced, but BK loses his Gold Squadron Y-Wing. 

And... I didn't take notes past this point, for some reason.  Basically though, by the end of Turn 9, it was over, and I had rid this sector of the Rebel scum.  I'm pretty sure I lost another TIE Fighter, however, meaning I would've had only 2 TIEs on the table.

Some thoughts:
I really enjoy this game- it's fast, the miniatures are great, and of course, I love the Star Wars theme.

I was lucky to be able to play a game with each side, because I actually managed to get SOME feel for the tactics of each.  I think my next game with the Rebels will go better, especially if I keep Biggs out of Range 1 from my enemy early on, where I can hopefully get some really good shots without losing much (hopefully keeping Biggs alive in the process).  Doing this with Howlrunner worked, although I wasn't able to get away from the Ion Cannons, really.

The asteroids were a fun addition.  I didn't really make note of them in the battle reports (because I took really shoddy notes, I guess), but I was stuck driving through them a couple of times, especially late in the game.  I believe I only took a single damage from them, however.  Running the extra ships makes it difficult to get all your TIEs into good positions without going through the asteroids.

Hopefully, I'll get this back on the table again soon!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

Hope everyone had Happy Holidays and a great New Year's Day celebration!

I toyed with the idea of throwing up some resolutions again this year, as I did, what, two years ago?  Something like that.  Of course, that year, I believe I went 0/10 on the resolution report card at the end of the year.  So I won't bother making resolutions, at least officially (except for a few personal, non-blog ones).

However, with that said, I do have some goals for this blog, and for the miniature hobby in general for the upcoming year.  First, I have some great idea for blog posts and random articles to post on here.  Nothing earth-shattering, I'm sure, but various things that would probably be good reads to someone.  In addition to that, I'm hoping to still stay on top of my battle reports once a week (although I still have a pre-Christmas battle report to throw up, covering some X-Wing games).

For the hobby itself, I've done a decent job of coming home and spending at least 15 minutes a night working on miniatures.  With all the new projects I'm working on (including my new acquisition of Dreadball- thanks Rob! :-) ), it does mean I'm not only making lots of progress, but that I'm actually slowly getting close to finishing painting some models.  That's VERY exciting.  However, doing worthless weekly updates about my progress wastes everyone's time, including the only person who probably reads it- me.  I'll post at the end of the month all the progress I've made that month for whatever games I've worked on.  Of course, since I'd like to post twice a week, that means I'll need to generate actual content... which I'm working on :).

Finally, it looks like I've got a fairly consistent schedule for gaming, once a week at a minimum.  Assuming that continues, I look forward to playing a lot of great games this year!