Sunday, May 22, 2011

This time I can't really blame the Winterguard

Just today I played a 35 point game with my Circle against Khador.

I had the following list:

Morvahna the Autumnblade
- Gnarlhorn Satyr
- Wold Guardian

Maximum unit of Wolves of Orboros + Unit Attachment
Minimum unit of Tharn Ravagers + Chieftain
Shifting Stones
Lord of the Feast
Reeve Hunter

Opponent had:

Epic Vlad
- Drago
- Marauder

Maximum unit of Ironfang Pikemen + Unit Attachment
2x Manhunters
Yuri the Axe
War Dog
Eiryss, mage hunter (prime version)

I won the starting roll and decided to take the edge that had a little bit of forest for my ravagers.

During my turn Morvahna cast Regrowth on Wolves of Orboros and Harvest on herself.

Opponent cast Transference and Hand of Fate on Widowmakers. Eiryss shot one Wolf of Orboros that wasn't benefitting from cover. I need to be really grateful that it wasn't epic Eiryss or I had been really struggling from the start of game.

Anyway, Widowmakers destroyed one of my shifting stones via Transference. Really, I'm starting to think the unit attachment would be a good choice, actually, though the model itself doesn't inspire me.

On my second turn I advanced a little bit with all my models, trying to minimise Vlad's feat and stuff, failing miserably in that. The worst thing that happened was losing my Gnarlhorn.

A hilarious mention goes to the Wolf that Eiryss had shot. I regrew him back and he charged Eiryss. Missed. Then on opponents turn Eiryss pokes him to death. Again.

I had advanced with Lord of the Feast and managed to hit a widowmaker with the raven. Reach wasn't quite enough to make total mass destruction and only one manhunter, one widowmaker and one ironfang pikeman died.

Anyway, Vlad's feat was used and 5 models were affected. One manhunter and four pikemen.

Gnarlhorn was killed by that despite having +2 armor from Morvahna's Restoration. Had I played any other caster my fury generation would've been crippled, but Morvahna was still going strong as long as opponent had warrior models to kill.

Then it was my turn to try to gain the upper hand, which I somehow think I could have done unless it wasn't for... well, more on that later.

First ravagers charged, chieftain to kill Yuri and unit leader to kill one feated pikeman. Both killed their targets, filling Morvahna with fury.

Then Morvahna activated and used her feat.

One eruption of life later two ironfangs were killed and a manhunter was at one damage box. With last remaining 2 fury Morvahna cast Restoration on Wold Guardian.

Wold Guardian then charged Drago and beat it down to one wound. There it was, undamaged armor 22 beatstick right in the middle of opposing army. It would have been a tough nut to crack unless it wasn't for... well, more on that later.

Wolves of Orboros used their Power Swell and charged off, two at Drago, one at Eiryss, one at a widowmaker and one just to finish manhunter and rest went at Marauder.

Drago was obviously wrecked and even Marauder took nice damage (most came from a damage roll of 5, 5, 5, 6), but columns that went off were 3 & 4, so nothing really happened there.

The one Wolf that had charged at the manhunter scored a hit and killed the bugger, giving Morvahna one fury, which was very crucial during opponents turn, but more on that just a little bit later...

Okay. You get a nice perspective on this picture as well.

First, ironfang pikemen charge, what's most important is that one kills one of my shifting stones that was blocking line of sight to Morvahna. Wold Guardian took some damage too from an absurdly high damage roll. But still, only its Spirit was broken, which funnily enough was the only branch that was of importance to me.

Then Vlad comes and throws a Razor Wind at Morvahna just for laughs.

5, 6, 6. That's, well, 16 damage in. Morvahna has 14 in full health.

The one fury from a harvested manhunter was put to use and the damage was transfered to Wold Guardian, which also lost its body branch. I weep openly as I write this. To get off something like that on Guardian itself needs a base POW of 21 with same damage roll.

Well, then it was what I anticipated to be my last turn.

I brought back as many Wolves as I could with Morvahna. Ravager chieftain killed two pikemen it could reach, filling up Morvahna with fury. Morvahna then charged herself to one pikeman and managed to kill it. The charge brought her dangerously close to Vlad.

Then she shot the war dog with Eruption of Life and killed it. Well, she got a fury from the doggy and brough attack against another pikeman in her melee range and managed to kill it too. With her last fury she tried to cast Influene on one pikeman that was in melee with Wold Guardian, but failed.

Wold Guardian tried to beat the two pikemen engaging it, getting to crush only one of them.

Then Wolves charged, most at Vlad. Others ran to block up lanes and clutter up the fight zone at Morvahna, but as often is the case, if things look too good or in this case "Hmm, I just might survive this", something must have been overlooked.

Martial Paragon was overlooked.

Anyway, first Eiryss shoots Death Bolt to Wold Guardian that had 3 damage boxes left.

Then Vlad casts Razor Wind at one engaging wolf, casts Martial Paragon on himself and just advanced to Morvahna.

Well, I don't have anything else to say, except for: That's gotta hurt!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The power of placement effects (epic Deneghra involved)

I played a game of Warmachine later this day on Vassal.

I played Circle Orboros and opponent was playing Cryx, and as it turned out I was facing epic Deneghra.

I did have epic Krueger as my warlock, however, though my list was pretty messed up against Wraith Witch's feat.

I had:

Krueger the Stormlord
- Gnarlhorn Satyr
- Feral Warpwolf
- Gorax

Minimum unit of Wolves of Orboros
Blackclad Wayfarer

And opponent had

Wraith Witch Deneghra
- Nightmare
- Deathripper

Maximum unit of Mechanithralls + 1 brute thrall
Necrosurgeon & Stitch Thralls
Withershadow Combine
2x Warwitch Siren

Opponent won the starting roll.

On my turn I tried to keep distance from Deneghra without getting caught with my whole army under her feat, but, well, it failed. I think it's a good lesson to be playing against her for once... Only two Wolves didn't fall under her feat during round 2.

All of my warbeasts and wilder were pretty tightly packed. Deneghra had turned incorporeal but she still had to fear Kruegers staff o' lightning. Deneghra cast Curse of Shadows on Gnarlhorn Satyr and after that Hellmouth on it, which was clever and nasty trick, as the push effect from that spell put Gorax and Gnarlhorn just in front of Krueger so that he didn't have line of sight to Deneghra.

Well, I did have telekinesis though.

Mechanithralls, however, ran to block line of sight even more.

On my second turn I tried to fire a stone spray from my Blackclad Wayfarer, which cleared two mechanithralls from Krueger's way. Then Krueger used telekinesis on Gnarlhorn Satyr and took an aimed shot at Deneghra, resulting in hit. After two damage boosted lightnings Deneghra was at one damage point.

Krueger had no fury to boost the last damage roll, but the roll didn't come out at double 1's.

End of a fast game.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Only Lady Hanbrook lives to tell the tale

Today I managed to play a game of A Touch of Evil.

It's been way too long since last time.

Anyway, I had a new player to introduce to the game. No other players, though, but Touch of Evil is quite fine as a two player cooperative.

As our villain we got the Scarecrow.

Heroes that were destined to fight this monstrosity were Katarina the Outlaw and Victor the Playwright.

The game had rather easy start. Shadow track didn't seem like it was moving at all, only nice items were drawn from Location decks and only Katarina was knocked down during whole game, actually. Progress seemed almost too easy. Except one suprise showdown (double 1's on cooperative chart) brought some early excitement to the game, though to be honest, it's a bit lame if game ends way too soon.

However, the "being cinematic" mention goes to Doctor Manning. Very early in the game Order's Influence was drawn that made Doctor backstab anyone in his office at the start of mystery phase if a cunning test was failed.

Event card that was used to remove Order's Influence failed to take effect.

Then Doctor Manning performed some "Late Night Experiments", which resulted in one horribly mutilated horse.

Not long after that it was found out that Doctor was actually the villain's most trusted servant. No-one was actually suprised at that.

A word to be said about the crows, too. Damn those things. They were somewhat easy to get rid of as both heroes had good enough Cunning, and they were a nice source of investigation points. However, they were easily ignored and as we had only two players, more crows seemed to spawn than we could shoo them off.

Though a honorable mention goes to our playwright, who practiced his theaterical entré's on them.

Game was almost a walk in the park until "remains in play" card The Horror was drawn. It made the cooperative mystery chart to be rolled twice each mystery phase.

At that point the shadow track started taking huge dives closer to zero. Victor had found a musket from Abandoned Fortress to help him raise his self-esteem and Katarina had found a Sabre from somewhere and bought a crossbow from monastery, which was funny as they are exactly the weapons that appear on her model.

Scarecrow's hiding place was found out to be the Bog.

After general hanging-around and last ditch secret-peeking showdown was ready to begin.

Because the shadow track took such a nose dive late at game the scarecrow was beating heroes with whopping 11 combat dice, as well as having 19 wounds.

However, the hunting party proved to be ridiculously powerful. Lady Hanbrook was a Reluctant Hero, thus giving +2 combat dice. Reverend Harding was the one who gave +3 combat dice. Inner strenght or something like that.

Stacking all possible extra dice at Katarina, she dealt 12 wounds with one fell swoop. Scarecrow rolled four wounds in, yet Oath of the Hunter kept Katarina standing upright.

Victor gave admirable 4 additional wounds in, despite his starting Combat rating of 1 and giving hits only on fives and sixes. Villain, however, ripped Victor's best play to tiny shreds of paper and Victor got so depressed he shot himself. Lady Hanbrook, who accompanied Victor, survived.

Katarina was still rolling over 10 dice (well, her armament was something like dagger, book of death, sabre, flail and a crossbow as well as Reverend Harding), so Scarecrow was eventually killed, but as it's last stand it killed both Katarina and Harding.

Anyway, during the games I've blogged A Touch of Evil games this one was the first real victory, the other one being a solo game that was just as close as this one, only one town elder living to tell the tale.

Really, need to play Touch more often.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

What can epic Sorscha do under Deneghra's feat? Well, possibly quite a lot

Yesterday I played a game with my Cryx agains Khador.

It was a 25 point game and my list was:

- Harrower
- Slayer
- Ripjaw

Maximum unit of Drudge Thralls
Necrotech & Scrap Thrall

Opponent had:

Epic Sorscha
- Beast 09

Maximum unit of Winterguard Infantry + Unit Attachment
Maximum unit of Iron Fang Pikemen + Unit Attachment
Kovnik Joe

Opponent won the starting roll.

The first picture is from the end of round 1. Iron Flesh had been cast on Ironfang Pikemen.

This time around we got into the thick of action very fast, as picture from opponents turn 2 shows:

Pikemen seemed bold enough to charge around, after which Iron Flesh was cast on them again. Two got to charge Harrower and one got his spear to bear on Slayer. I'm not sure if the two ironfang at harrower destroyed its cannon already or was it later in the game.

Winterguard advanced to hug some linear obstacles.

Sure, I was tied up but also looked like I had a pretty juicy turn to land my feat, though obviously I couldn't assassinate Sorscha with it.

Deneghra was about the first model that activated, put on her feat and cast Crippling Grasp on Ironfang Pikemen and sprayed two ironfang away that were in front of Harrower.

Harrower advanced charged off then and used thresher to kill four enemy models.

All in all, pikemen were pretty devastated and all other enemy models were caught under Deneghra's feat except for Winterguard Infantry (with the exception of two who were most forward).

I did feel pretty confident at that point, but was about to learn a nasty lesson how a cornered animal (not referring to my opponent, rather his army) fights.

Sorscha had only 8 inch control range.

Yet, she advanced, gave Desperate Pace to Winterguard Infantry and cast Cyclone, bringing her close enough to get Deneghra under her feat.

Well, to my advantage, winterguard were still a little bit too far away, only two got within 8" of Deneghra and the other one was under Deneghra's feat.

First one hit and dealt whopping 4 points of damage that was doubled to 8 because of the feat.

The other winterguard missed. But really... Another shot like that and Deneghra would've been killed on her own feat turn.

As for the rest of things that happened, Harrower was wrecked and most of drudges killed, as well as Skarlock.

Deneghra was packed up with 3 souls.

My turn started.

Drudges tried to charge the standard bearer of ironfang pikemen. No hits.

Actually, drudges made just 4 attacks during whole game, two of which were made against Crippling Grasped, Withered pikemen. No hits. That's just... that's just depressing. One of them also nearly blocked Slayer's charge a bit later.

Anyway, then Ripjaw moved into position and Deneghra activated, shooting a fully boosted Scourge at epic Sorscha, hitting home and knocking her down.

Then she sprayed the one pikeman in front of her and moved to poke Sorscha with pathetic results.

But, then, Slayer charged and finished Sorscha off. I wanted to be pompous and used combo-strike to finish her, which luckily killed her. Only after doing that I realised that had I rolled poorly I wouldn't have been able to make my other initial attacks and I had given only one focus to Slayer to get the charge off... The damage roll that killed Sorscha was exactly what was needed to bring her down. One less and... uh, totally different outcome.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Bronzeback endures, true skorne style

Yesterday I played a game with my Skorne against Cygnar, 35 points that was.

As I had finished painting Dominar Rasheth, I really wanted to try him out and my list was:

Dominar Rasheth
- Bronzeback Titan
- Basilisk Krea
- Basilisk Drake

Minimum unit of Cataphract Cetrati
Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + Unit Attachment
Minimum unit of Beast Handlers
Orin Midwinter
Bloodrunner Master Tormentor

Opponent was playing with Siege. I can assure, I was pretty horrified with that match-up.

Anyway, his list was:

- Defender
- Defender

Arcane Tempest Gun Mages + Officer
Black 13th
Rangers (who are proxied by Winterguards in the pictures)
Arlan Strangewayes

We had a third party to make up terrain for us, which came out as pretty interesting, actually. Tightly cluttered buildings meant nice hiding places for my big guy Rasheth and anything else I wanted to survive Siege's feat, but long linear obstacles were pretty much denying me charges.

I won the starting roll and now it's happened twice in a row I guess I need to admit that the spell is broken that I always lose that roll. Ah well. Was fun as long as it lasted.

First turn I managed to lose my Bloodrunner Master Tormentor who was hiding behind a fence. Enough stealth-ignoring shots finally brought her down despite her defense 18. I had been thinkin the Master Tormentor would be nice arc node for Rasheth. First, charging off a random one wound model and then sprinting to a perfect channeling position. One defender took a pot shot at Bronzeback Titan who took a few damage in, which was hilarious now on the hindsight... It started taking damage on the first round of the game.

Also, Black 13th shot the Mage Storm cloud, but it deviated away from my troops.

On my turn I closed a little bit in, running one of my Praetorian Swordmen close to Defender. Rasheth channeled a Breath of Corruption through him and got Defender and the Black 13th member under the cloud, killing him and doing a couple of damage to warjack.

Though I otherwise kept my distance I brought my Bronzeback Titan to middle field and tried to protect it from shooting with Krea and her animus. Bronzeback placement has always been my Achilles heel, I always mess it up. Yet this time dice screwed opponent enough...

One of the rangers ran to the fence (difficult to spot in the picture, but close to bronzeback, basilisk and cetrati) and Siege activated.

He moved close by and launched a Force Hammer on bronzeback, who slammed into the wall and after it shot it twice with rocket launcher (Reinholdt giving the second shot). Then opponent was pondering if he should use Siege's feat or not, opting to use it, thinking of killing two of my warbeasts in one go, thus restricting my game considerably.

Defender shot Bronzeback under Siege's feat and ultimately broke it's spirit, meaning I couldn't shake off the knockdown effect of slam on my turn. Yet... it endured.

Then another Defender, who was reserved for giving the initial shot to the basilisk, decided to shoot at Bronzeback. Anyway, the damage roll was so low nothing came through.

Other losses were a couple of praetorian swordmen. All in all, my entire army wasn't all that devastated after Siege's feat.

My turn was a bit boring again, just slow advance forward. Again I ran one of my praetorians to act as a channeler for Rasheth and cast Blood Mark on Siege.

Cetrati advanced in shield wall. They were actually the unit that hacked away the rangers that appeared in middle of my lines. They had Carnivore cast and upkept on them from turn 1.

They provided a nice cover for Orin Midwinter, who advanced and cast arc of lighting on the unpainted Defender and lightning arcs killed two rangers.

It's a shame I forgot to take a picture of opponents next turn.

Anyway, I don't actually remember who were the actual models who did what on that turn, except that few Gun Mages shot Orin Midwinter and the rest & grey Defender shot Basilisk Krea.

Black 13th advanced, but they advanced close enough to Bronzeback. The first was counter-charged by the titan, but obviously it missed. But it was engaged in melee now, which was nice.

After that the titan went through a horrible hail of fire. If I remember right, at some point it's body was broken.

On my turn I ran my Cetrati to engage as many gun mages as possible, as well as the Defender.

Praetorian Swordmen charged the Black 13th and blue Defender. They performed admirably, as the first praetorian who made an attack against the Black 13th hit and killed, then side stepped to the one who was engaging Bronzeback. Hit and kill too, then side stepping away from Bronzebacks way. Three who charged Defender did automatic damage points to it and side stepped as you can see them.

After that Rasheth casts a fully boosted Breath of Corruption at Siege through Praetorian officer and the damage roll was stupidly high, leaving Siege with only 5 hit points left.

And Bronzeback was healed by the beast handlers (as had been done for the past 2 turns already).

Then the titan ran to engage Siege. If my memory doesn't fail it had 7 health boxes left at that time.

On opponents turn the story of the hulking behemoth comes to an end. First, Siege hit it with his hammer and scored a critical smite. Well, Bronzeback was smitten away real good and the damage roll didn't kill it, it was left with something like 3 health boxes.

Last model that could do any attacks against it was the last ranger standing. It moved close to it, took a shot at the titan who had been beaten to a stupor through the whole game and... damage roll 6, 5 or something like that.

Damn it. A ranger executing my Bronzeback Titan.

Then it was my turn.

Paingivers ran first, and then Rasheth activated, moved forward, used his feat (meaning further -2 armor to Siege on top of Blood Mark) and channeled a Breath of Corruption through one paingiver. Damage roll wasn't as good as earlier and left Siege with one hit point.

I was a little bit disheartened at this, as I've had my share of losses (some of which are already even detailed in this blog) once getting the opposing warcaster down to 1 hit point and then somehow not managing to do the last point.

But I still had Basilisk Drake, which had done absolutely nothing during the whole game.

As it turned out, it was building up for this moment. Spray hit and killed Siege. End of game.

Monday, May 9, 2011

A new acquaintance

Yeah, I admit it, I had to google up the spelling on that word.

Anyway, today at Fantasiapelit, after finishing up the game of Smallworld, I got a chance to play completely new game to me.

It was 7 Wonders, and there were 6 players involved.

Though I was the newbie there, the game was pretty quick to learn enough so you could enjoy and play it without slowing everything down. Obviously my choices weren't the most optimised.

Anyway, 7 Wonders is a marvelously designed game. Pretty often you just won't find a game that can have, like we now had, 6 players, and be really fast and still yet involve all the players.

You get a random wonder that you must build during the games 3 "ages". You interact mostly with players that sit on your left and on your right so there's no time wasted on looking at the whole legion of players and finding the best course of action.

Yet everyone is dealt a hand of cards. You choose one of them and give the rest to a person either clockwise or counter-clockwise, depending on the age the timeline is currently in. This rotates until everyone has but one card, which is then discarded.

You get victory points from different buildings and working on your wonder. I got the Lighthouse of Alexandria.

I can't really analyse too much what happened there, but in the end I managed to finish my own wonder and had a huge military power. During first age I didn't understand how the combat worked so I got beaten up by both my neighbors. During second age I got still beaten up by one player, but won the other. And at last stage I won them both! Bwahahaha!

... yet I was last on the scoreboard.

I scored 42 points.

"Winner" scored 60 points. Actually two players scored 60 points so the tie-breaker needed to be checked from rules manual to determine the ultimate victor.

Boardgaming after a while (Smallworld)

Today I found the courage to actually go to board game evening at Jyväskylä's Fantasiapelit. I brought Smallworld with me and we played a game with four players. I actually played another game this evening, but I'll write about it in a separate post.

Well, the races and combos that were drawn were Forest Orcs, Flying Elves, Merchant Wizards and Mercenary Priestesses.

Obviously orcs and elves rocked the first few turns. Priestesses, as they were last in turn order, got to pick quite a good spot for them to start building their ivory tower too, but there were Dragon-Master Goblins already coming up.

Well, on the second turn both wizards and priestesses went into decline, wizards because, well, their possibilities weren't really that awesome and priestesses because wizards went into decline.

Next turn even elves went into decline and wizards came up as Dragon Master Goblins and the board looked pretty awesome for them with all the races in decline. They promptly ate a lot of elves and wrecked priestesses' tower with their dragon.

Priestesses, who entered the game with Pillaging Pygmies took revenge for the priestesses and wiped all the wizards off the map.

Elves turned into Catapult Trolls and started wrecking orcs, who went very soon into decline because of that.

Goblins were left alone for a long time and had a nice little empire of theirs, until a new race, owing fealty to the controller of former orc, Swamp Amazons butchered way too many of their tiny green bodies and hilarious, colorful hats. Into decline.

Combined efforts of goblins and pygmies put trolls into decline too (though, to be honest, their pitiful effect on that decicion is a stretch - they had many areas because of catapults cheap conquests.)

Pillaging pygmies decided their time had come and entered the game again as Peace-Loving Ghouls, who conquered a couple of former troll areas.

Swamp Amazons sticked around for a long time and for last turn they were switched for Hill White Ladies, not because they were a super choice, but because 6 victory coins rested on it.

Before that Catapult Trolls were switched to Heroic Dwarves and ghouls were turned put into decline just after one round of playing. Which was pretty awesome choice, as the player was able to play two last rounds as Marauding Ratmen.

Well, to continue the story of goblins, after their bloody encounter with the amazons they started again as Mounted Humans. Decline race and new race were pretty good but timing was bad. On last round of the game there was no time to go into decline and all that was left from the awesome human race was one zone, three tokens and two in decline goblins. Whee. You can guess who played that one.

Heroic Dwarves with earlier trolls in decline actually started scoring pretty nicely and dwarves controlled three mines at the end of the game despite their low numbers.

Final scoreboard:

Flying Elves/Catapult Trolls/Heroic Dwarves: 89
Forest Orcs/Swamp Amazons/Hill White Ladies: 87
Merchant Wizards/Dragon Master Goblins/Mounted Humans: 78
Mercenary Priestesses/Pillaging Pygmies/Peace-Loving Ghouls/Marauding Ratmen: 64