Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Fillers during Ropecon

Before jumping to writing tournament reports from Ropecon, I'm going to write down shortly two other games I played there.

On Sunday, after three nights of a maximum of 5 hours of sleep, I was tired and giddy and fidgety all at the same time. An acquaintance called me over to play some Mah-Jong, though I was planning to go to Eden demo game.

I got totally lost in the mechanics of Mah-Jong.

In my awkward state of awareness, the ages old game was a mind-blowing experience.

We had only one player (four in total) who had actually mastered the rules. He felt almost like a wizard when he told rules on the go. You, mere mortal, could only vaguely understand what was going on and the deeper understanding of basic rules felt like they were just beyond your grasp.

But still. It was sweet.

Somehow I managed to win the first game (we all played with open hands) by pulling exactly the right tile for me late in the game. I didn't really understand why did I win or where did the points come from, but as far as I could tell, it was a bit unexpected victory out of the blue sky. "Tsumo" or something like that.

Second game was played with closed hands. I still couldn't exactly figure out where the points came from (I thought that having 4x same tile as a set was a victory point but no...)

One player did this "riichi" thing (I'm not sure about spelling here at all) late in the game, and removed a tile from his hand. Two players, me and another one, wanted to take that tile, and because it was the exact tile we both required for a victory point, we both got it. Weird. But it resulted in a shared victory.

And then we played a third game that ended by this "tsumo" thing by another player.

Still, after three games, I wasn't exactly sure what to do to actually score points. But I guess I had learned at least the basics (how to play and collect sets).

And then... No Thanks!

I got to play a game of No Thanks (a fast and easy card game) when I was thinking if I should start to get going home. Gameplay was really easy and I'm not exactly sure what can I write about such a simple game.

You draw a card from deck which has a score in it. If you take that card, you get that many minus points. You have tokens with you which you can place on the card and skip decision to next player. If next players doesn't want to take the card, he or she places another token on it. And the thing goes on like this until someone takes the card AND the tokens on it. And then draws another card, until deck is empty.

We played only one game of this (total players 3), and I lost horribly. I blame this on the fact that I drew the 35 (maximum number) point card when I had only four tokens. I took it without placing even a single token. I knew I didn't have a chance.

And next card I drew was 33.

Then I tried to milk out as many tokens from other players before taking the card, but, well, couldn't do that for too long with my pitiful amount of tokens.


I did have a lot more plans to play different games in Ropecon, but on Friday I was amazingly tired and the day passed with not even a single game played. But there were people to meet and see, which is always nice too.

On Saturday I was playing Warmachine from 9 AM to midnight, so no real place for any other game then.

And on Sunday I was dead tired again and I had to leave early to catch a train (which I missed, by the way) so these two games were my only "new" experiences.

Still, an enjoyable convention. Next year I think I'll try to have good nights sleep on Wednesday and Thursday before the con to have some actual energy, heh.

Monday, July 30, 2012


Last weekend I was visiting the Ropecon gaming convention that had quite a few Warmachine tournaments. I took part in two of them, a 50-point character restricted main tournament with 3 lists, and 25 point modified Mangled Metal (5 minute turns, and 2 points could be spend on any models, be it solos or even units)

I'm not starting the game write-ups just yet, but I'm writing down my lists here for ease of reference during writing.

So, in main tournament I had the following 50-point lists using Cryx:

List 1: The Swift Scissors

Warwitch Deneghra (+5)
- Erebus
- Ripjaw
- Nightwretch
- Nightwretch
- Helldiver
- Helldiver

Min Bane Thralls
Min Bile Thralls
Min Soulhunters
Bloat Thrall
2x Necrotech & Scrap Thrall
2x Pistol Wraith

Minimum Satyxis Raiders + Sea Witch
Satyxis Raider Captain
Machine Wraith

List 2: A Fistful of Rock

Master Necrotech Mortenebra & Deryliss (+4)
- Harrower
- Slayer
- Nightmare
- Ripjaw
- Stalker

Min Bile Thralls
Max Mechanithralls + 1x Brute Thrall
Necrotech & Scrap Thrall
Machine Wraith
Orin Midwinter, Rogue Inquisitor
2x Warwitch Siren

List 3: The Paper Tiger

Lord Exhumator Scaverous (+5)
- Malice
- Seether
- 2x Nightwretch
- Ripjaw

Max Bane Thralls + Unit Attachment
Withershadow Combine
Bane Lord Tartarus
Gorman diWulfe

I chose my warcasters pretty much from the play count from my spreadsheets and the time it has been since I played with these casters. I wrote reinforcements only to Deneghra's list here, because she was the only caster I played a reinforcement scenario with.

And then the 25 point Mangled Metal with 2 freebie points tournament was one-list only. My choice was a bit weird one:

Venethrax (+6)
- Reaper
- Slayer
- Cankerworm
- Ripjaw
- Stalker
- Helldiver

+Machine Wraith

He didn't actually fare all that badly, really... But enough for now.

More to come during this week.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

The Trees That Dominate

Today I played a game of Warmachine.

After my huge disappointment with Scaverous and a long streak of playing Skorne, I felt I needed to run my Circle Orboros after a long pause.

We were playing a 35 point game, and I chose Cassius the Oathkeeper as my warlock.

My list was:

- Megalith
- Feral Warpwolf
- Woldwatcher

Maximum unit of Wolves of Orboros + Unit Attachment
Shifting Stones + Stonekeeper
Swamp Gobbers Bellows Crew
2x Gallows Grove
Lanyssa Ryssyll

Opponent had:

Iron Lich Asphyxious
- Harrower
- Cankerworm
- Deathripper
- Defiler

Minimum unit of Bane Knights
Minimum unit of Bile Thralls
Bane Lord Tartarus
Skarlock Thrall

I didn't have my laptop with me, but I had the old Steamroller 2011 scenarios as print-outs with me. I tried to look up some scenario that was a meaningful one (so no Close Quarter or any such basically "caster kill" scenarios") and Incursion looked promising. I was also remembering that it was exactly the same in SR 2012. (I was one inch wrong, though - First player deployment seems to be only 7" in the new document! That would have meant a bountiful 3" deployment area on my 8" too short table, heh.)

Anyway, opponent won starting roll but let me go first. Which isn't usually a bad thing in scenario play.

Picture is taken from the end of opponents first turn. Small AoE's are - you guessed it - Breaths of Corruption. One Breath deviated so it killed a Wolf of Orboros and did damage to Gallows Grove. Other Breath of Corruption did a lousy deviation, but blocked Wolves charge lines there.

At the end of opponents turn the flag near the pond was a fake one. This was somewhat funny situation, as that was exactly where both players had been bringing troops in.

On my next turn I ran Woldwatcher to control the rightmost (from camera) flag. Brave Wolves of Orboros controlled the second flag in the center of board.

Gallows Grove teleported, and Cassius cast Hellmouth through it at the gathering of Bile Thralls. There was a little extra effect when it turned out that Deathripper was within 3" of initial target. Four dead bile thralls and a damaged Deathripper. Good enough for me.

I was thinking if I should use Cassius' feat now, because Wurmwood was quite far up. I had tried to place my models so that the only arc node that might have tried to run within 5" of the tree would suffer a few free strikes in the process. So I decided not to.

Then was opponents second turn, which was the first turn either player could score points from flags.

And yeah, there is only one round of mayhem done in following picture:

That's 7x dead Wolves of Orboros, 1x dead Swamp Gobber, dead Lanyssa Ryssyll and 2x dead Gallows Groves. Oh, and Stonekeeper was left alive with only one hit box remaining and the last swamp gobber failed its massive casualties test. Wurmwood itself was threatened when two Breaths of Corruption landed on it, though luckily only one of them could be boosted. By then the carnivorous tree had already gorged itself to maximum soul count of 5, which resulted it having ARM of 21. Opponent rolled the damage rather poorly, so Cassius didn't take any damage here.

Well, Asphyxious had used his feat, which explains the losses a little. Four times breat of corruption on soft targets ought to hurt. But that wasn't everything. The POW 5 hit from the feat also killed plenty of Wolves of Orboros - even the two, whom Harrower had failed to kill on its charge.

Then starts my third turn.

In a way the turn was a perfect example from the differences of Fury and Focus mechanics, which always seems to be a hot topic on Privateer Press forums.

First Feral Warpwolf activates and proceeds to beat up Harrower, warping strenght in the process. Damage rolls were pretty abysmal all over, because 6x p+s 17 and 1x p+s 16 attacks (that all did HIT!) didn't wreck Harrower. It was left with one health box, though. That was a job for Stone Keeper. I think this may have been the first time I ever actually used it's attack spell. Anyway, Harrower went down.

Then Wolves of Orboros charge already damaged Deathripper. One Combined Melee Attack later by all remaining members with a melee weapon (three), the bonejack was still standing with a few damage boxes left.

Now Megalith moves and casts Stranglehold on the Deathripper, who had lost its movement. Attack wrecks it, and Megalith had been forced three times.

Next Woldwatcher tries to score some lucky damage on Cankerworm. It hits and boosts damage. No systems break, but the beast is on full Fury. Now I had 9 Fury on board on warbeasts alone.

Cassius activates and moves to control the central map. He drains a couple of souls from Wurmwood and casts a fully boosted Stranglehold on Asphyxious, who is just within 10". The lich takes 6 points in.

Cassius casts Unseen Path and brings Wurmwood closer and uses his feat. He left 2 Fury left for transfers, which meant that next turn I would be able to leach only 4 Fury from my beasts. That wasn't necessary, however.

The Forest of Judgement worked more amazingly I had actually planned for.

Only models opponent could have brought within 4" of the center flag was Asphyxious himself, or run Bane Knights as far as possible and hope for the best.

Cassius scored a second scenario point on opponents turn, and third point on my next turn. It was a game over for Cryx.

Now thinking back, the most important single roll was made in the end of opponents first round, where the flag disappeared which was closest to both armies. I needed to worry a lot less about Bane Knights and to some extent even Bile Thralls. If you can ever "not worry" about them if there is even a single one of them alive... or should I say operational?

Anyway, the game ended abruptly, which sometimes happens in scenario games. It almost felt unfinished. I guess that a huge forest grew over the area and Asphyxious decided that "Guys, let's not go in there. Let's go somewhere else."

Friday, July 20, 2012

Keep on failing, no matter the odds!

A few days ago I played a game of Warmachine.

I felt that it was time to play something else now other than epic Hexeris, so I did a following 35 point list for my other recent purchase, Scaverous:

Lord Exhumator Scaverous
- 2x Helldivers
- 2x Nightwretches
- Seether

Maximum unit of Mechanithralls
Necrosurgeon & Stitch Thralls
Cephalyx Overlords
Bane Lord Tartarus
Skarlock Thrall

I adamantly refused to believe there was any curse or anything on my Scaverous, and I was pleased with my list.

Opponent was playing epic Kaya with following list:

Kaya & Laris
- Warpwolf Stalker
- Feral Warpwolf
- Pureblood Warpwolf
- Argus

Shifting Stones
Druid Wilder
2x War Wolves

We didn't play any scenario and opponent won the starting roll. Picture is taken from the end of my first turn. Since opponent was pretty much stealthed there was not much I could do other than advance forward, camping a lot of focus. Skarlock had cast Death Ward on Seether.

Now, on opponents next turn opponent misjudged distances about 1.5 inches and used Kaya's feat. Stalker couldn't reach anything and Pureblood's spray missed Seether, though it killed three mechanithralls. Feral Warpwolf with warped Speed just reached Seether and mauled it horribly - it was left with only six hit boxes left. Thanks to Death Ward I could pick damaged columns and so it still had every system up and running.

But really, that was all epic Kaya's feat did now. Though it always feels a bit bad for the opponent when a good resource is accidentally wasted like that, I couldn't still help feeling a little bit of hope arising in me - could Scaverous really get his second victory?

Since I still couldn't do much, my army marched forward in a defensive position. Skarlock cast Death Ward on Scaverous, and he camped 5 focus. Two were used on Telekinesis to a helldiver.

Seether ate a war wolf that tried to block my movements a bit.

On next turn I guess opponent felt a little desperate, when he decided to launch an all-out attack.

Kaya dropped upkeeping all upkeeps. Pureblood used its animus on Kaya, and Laris ran to engage Scaverous. Kaya then used Laris' animus to teleport next to Scaverous and started pounding hits on Arm 22 Scaverous with MAT 8 & P+S 11+4D6, thanks to flank and damage boosts. I was a little scared then, because good rolls could and would actually do a lot of damage then.

But to add an insult to injury, here's a picture from Kaya's assassination run & damage roll:

Yeah. Next attack, which was last attack Kaya could buy, dealt 3 points in.

So I did feel quite self-confident in killing the dirty little hippie, though it was a rather difficult puzzle because of Laris' Guard Dog -ability and Kaya's Unyielding. I decided I needed to get Laris away first, and then debuff Kaya with feated spells and then kill her with a couple of melee attacks and spells from other sources.

First Helldiver pops up behind Laris and gets loaded two focus. Charge attack hits and deals some damage in. Then mechanithralls activate and hope for lucky hits on Laris. No-one hits.

Then I have to activate Scaverous, and the exhumator unleashes Black Gates. First Scaverous casts a 3-focus Feast of Worms on Laris with a boosted damage roll. The annoying little doggie was left with one hit box remaining.

Scaverous uses his Thresher attack, but all attacks miss (one to Laris, Kaya and Argus). With one focus left Scaverous tries to cast Icy Grip on Kaya, but thanks to Guard Dog, it misses.

Now, under Scaverous' feat two Overlords come within range and shoot their magic sprays to the swirling melee. Laris dies and Kaya takes some damage in.

Next, the second Overlord sprays. He kills a swathe of Mechanithralls and the first Overlord, too. Kaya takes only a few damage points in, and, well, heh. Scaverous takes 5 points in. The overlord gave more damage in to my warcaster than the opponents'...

Kaya has six health boxes left after everything. Skarlock then charges her and casts Excarnate. If Skarlock hits DEF 16 with 7+3D6, and then rolls 7 for damage, Kaya would be a goner.

Skarlock doesn't hit DEF 16 with 7+3D6.

Next turn Kaya skewers Scaverous. She's really angry because her puppy died.

And I can only watch in amazement with my results with Scaverous.

No matter the situation and game progress, somehow he always manages to lose. At the moment he has worst win/loss ratio out of all of my played warcasters/warlocks. The only victory I've had with him must be to keep my hopes up so I won't succumb to superstition.

But I have already done that. My Scaverous is cursed.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

If boosted POW 12's kill Warcasters, then boosted POW 10's kill Warlocks

Yesterday I played a couple of Warmachine games. Though strictly speaking there was only one Warmachine model around (Orin Midwinter). Somehow I find it easier to refer to both game systems as Warmachine.

I was playing again with my newest warlock, Lord Arbiter Hexeris.

Opponent was bringing epic Lylyth. Games were 35 points with caster kill scenario with Killbox artifice.

My list:

Lord Arbiter Hexeris
- Bronzeback Titan
- Basilisk Drake
- Cyclops Shaman (bonded to Hexeris)

Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + Unit Attachment
Minimum unit of Paingiver Beast Handlers
Venator Flayer Cannon
Ancestral Guardian
Extoller Soulward
Bloodrunner Master Tormentor
Orin Midwinter

Opponent had:

Epic Lylyth
- 2x Ravagores

Blighted Nyss Striders + Unit Attachment

Minimum unit of Blighted Nyss Raptors
Annyssa Ryvaal

Both games were played with the same lists. And both were relatively short.

In first game opponent won starting roll and decided to go first. The picture is taken from the end of my first turn. I pretty much just ran forward, and now, looking back... I ran forward too much?!

Because next turn Lylyth used her feat.

My opponent hadn't played a game in over a year, so he underestimated the range available to Lylyth's feat run. So, the ridiculous stuff in the picture is that Legion models are actually closer to me than they needed to be. Crazy stuff.

Anyway, Lylyth's feat decimated Bronzeback and six Praetorian Swordsmen and if memory serves, did a couple of damage points to either Basilisk or Cyclops Shaman.

So at the start of my second turn, my army was already crippled against enemy heavy warbeasts.

But the thing I did made me feel like a filthy Cryxian (which I guess I am at the core of me). Extoller gave Guidance to Hexeris and Cyclops Shaman ran somewhere close to basecoated Ravagore.

Then Hexeris channeled Ashes to Ashes twice at the Ravagore, boosting damages on Lylyth. Average dices wouldn't have killed her, but dice were not average. She got killed. This was due to her not having a Fury left for a transfer.

Even if opponent brought Everblight's troops unnecessarily forward, I did see why people like playing epic Lylyth with Ravagores and a ton of shooters. We played another game, then, which was even more furious, because I got to start.

Game 2:

So, we kept same lists and same sides, but gave me the start to have a little variation in game play. And the variation was that Lylyth used her feat on first turn of the game... sheesh...

So, first picture is from the end of opponents first turn.

And wisened from the last game, opponent stayed far away and shot at soft targets more this time around. I lost Cyclops Shaman and Basilisk Drake before my second turn had even begun. Other casualties were the Flayer Cannon and again exactly half of Praetorian Swordsmen.

If I learned to respect Lylyth's feat in last game, this was where I learned to fear it. I had lost about 15 points worth of models, and enemy was about 18"-20" away. On top of all this, I juggled Feralgeist in both light warbeasts, but attack output was still more than enough to kill them... twice.

"What the hell can I do now?" was my feelings when my second turn began.

I just decided to rush everything forward and see what happens.

Did I do any damage to opponent? Nope, not even a single attack roll was targeted at enemy models.

Enemy, then, shot down Bloodrunner Master Tormentor with Striders and took some potshots at Bronzeback with Raptors and such before Ravagores charged in to make it a lunch. And they did eat Bronzeback, but stopped when the meat started to taste a bit off... Feralgeist had just jumped in and turned the hulking titan into undead. And the undead titan actually survived to see yet another tormented turn.

Well, all things considered my situation looked really nasty no matter how you look at it:

I had lost ALL of my warbeasts, since Bronzeback was undead now.

Only things within my punching range were the two ravagores, though I had nothing that could actually harm them all that much.

This time Lylyth had one fury left for transfers, and one of the Ravagores had no fury in it. So that one became my main target. It was all-out situation for me on my turn.

Titan punched all it could at the empty Ravagore, and dealt sweet damage in, but just about the most important thing failed: it missed one War Gauntlet attack, so no Grab & Smash for it. I guess you lose a bit of your frenzied rage when you die or something.

Extoller Soulward walked up and took a boosted shot at the empty Ravagore. Damage roll was rather bad, but it was all straight in. That solo is golden against Hordes.

Then Beast Handlers just ran forward. And Hexeris charged the empty Ravagore. It took two attacks to bring the beast down. Then he cast Ashes to Ashes on one of the Beast Handlers. Lylyth took a POW 10, and again, damage roll was far from average.

Now Hexeris uses his feat, and here is a good place to stop to take some breath. Writing up these things is actually rather good practice, because you notice stuff that escapes attention during actual play.

So let's continue.

Hexeris uses his feat, and takes away all fury from Ravagore and one soul from Extoller.

He blasts another Beast Handler with a second Ashes to Ashes and boosts damage on Lylyth. Lylyth bites the dust again to POW 10's.

The thing here that escaped both players attention was the fact that after Hexeris' feat the Ravagore was no longer on maximum fury, so it was again eligible target for damage transfer.

This somewhat small, pittoresque, tiny and unneeded detail in the whole picture kind of steals away my thunder from winning epic Lylyth twice in a row. I couldn't have done any more attacks to Lylyth, so Everblight shouldn't have lost this one.

I might have been able to kill the last Ravagore with 3x Praetorian Swordsmen charges and Orin Midwinter, but that would've been all.

This probably calls for a rematch some time in the future, because it's plain arse to win this way and plain arse to lose this way.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Never have I ever...

... witnessed such a failure from Basilisk Drake in my career as a Skorne player.

If I can name one model that has never left me feeling disappointed to function in battle versus point cost, it was Basilisk Drake until game I played yesterday.

I played with my Skorne, a 35 point game with caster kill scenario, but with Killbox artifice.

My list was:
Lord Arbiter Hexeris
- Rhinodon
- Bronzeback Titan
- Cyclops Shaman (bonded to Hexeris)
- Basilisk Drake

Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + Unit Attachment
Maximum unit of Paingiver Beast Handlers
Venator Flayer Cannon Crew
Extoller Soulward

Opponent played:

Iron Lich Asphyxious
- Harrower
- Deathripper
- Defiler (proxied by one of the Deathrippers)
- Cankerworm

Minimum unit of Bane Knights
Minimum unit of Bile Thralls
Skarlock Thrall
Bane Lord Tartarus

We played the game in Fantasiapelit Jyväskylä, but somehow I forgot my camera home, though I do remember that I handled it just before leaving to the gaming shop... Luckily my opponent had some sort of phone, maybe one of those smart phones or something like that? with him, so he took some pictures during match and sent them to me. Big thanks for that!

I won the starting roll, and first pictures give a broad view of the playing area, though the picture is a bit blurry. My right hand has Concealment from passing over Praetorian Swordsmen, who have Ashen Veil on them.

First of all, now I wasn't playing against Hordes, and even more, I wasn't playing againt any living models at all. That completely negated the (arguably) best facet of Ashen Veil: -2 to attack rolls while within 2" of affected models.

Anyway. Opponent placed Scything Touch on Bane Knights, which wasn't actually a real suprise.

Next we have side-profiles of both armies. They look so nice that I wanted to include them here, though placed like that gives a wrong impression about distances between armies.

However, I was moving my infantry behind warbeasts because of bile thralls. Because opponent divided bile thralls and bane knights to different flanks, I was distressed on where I should try to concentrate Ashes to Ashes spam.

Next picture illustrates situation a little better:

There they are, Tartarus and Knights in the middle of ghost woods. Harrower had a lucky deviation and even more lucky damage rolls, when it nailed down a few Praetorians and a Beast Handler.

The row of linear obstacles looked rather... prohibiting for my very non-Pathfinder forces. Opponent could very well fortify the undead behind the fences and slowly spam Breath of Corruption to whittle down everything.

So this is what I did.

Cyclops Shaman moved forward to both lure out bile thralls, and also to take Evil Eye shot at Harrower. Then Hexeris casts Hellfire or two (don't remember any more, I played today two Warmachine games too so things mix up a little...) at Harrower.

Bronzeback pushes Rhinodon an inch forward, and then Beast Handlers enrage it.

Rhinodon charges Harrower, but it stops at the wall, obviously. Its claws don't reach the Harrower, but tail attack does. That must have been a curious sight, how the Rhinodon wrecks a heavy warjack with multiple smashes from its tail, but not engaging it for real...

Basilisk Drake shot a spray at Deathripper, I think it hit and fried its Cortex.

Then it's opponents turn. Skarlock cast Parasite on the poor Rhinodon.

Bane Knights charge it, but luckily only one of them actually has Line of Sight to it. So that one charging Bane Knight with Scything Touch took only something like 40% of Rhinodon's boxes away.

Bile Thralls advanced and sprayed around. This was suprising - there was not even a single purge! Probably because their placement was a little messed up, a single purge would have taken at least one other bile thrall with it.

Still, some sprays hit home. At least Cyclops Shaman took a devastating hit with horrible damage roll. Then Asphyxious activated and sneezed the Rhinodon down, claiming its soul.

Then we got a little blurry picture again after one full round I think.

I was Hexeris' time to use his feat. And two Ashes to Ashes actually did impressive job - all Bile Thralls were burned down, as well as Skarlock and a couple of Bane Knight. But that was only a couple of them, which was bad. Oh, and Asphyxious took one damage too, yippee.

Basilisk Drake went forward to be slaughtered. But I saw a possibility of getting rid of Bane Lord Tartarus. But it was not Drake's day. It missed Tartarus, but hit Cankerworm behind. Damage done is always nice, but it should be applied to right place, really...

A lucky hits from charging Praetorian Swordsmen wrecked Defiler. It was left with one point of damage, which was dealt in style: with Penetrating Strike.

Things looked quite nice at the end of my turn, actually. But then was Cryx turn with things like un-used feats involved.

The POW 5 hit from Asphhyxious' feat took down a couple of Beast Handlers. First, however, Asphyxious shot down Cyclops Shaman with a Hellfire and cast Parasite on Bronzeback. Then he was filled with focus, and he shot Bronzeback with Hellfire and teleported to safety.

Bane Lord Tartarus created three additional Bane Knights from cursed Praetorian Swordsmen, and then Bane Knights devastated the rest of Swordsmen. Only lucky thing was that Basilisk Drake didn't want to die just yet.

So after Cryxian turn, things looked just a little bit desperate, but not yet lost. It was a thrilling situation that was brewing up there.

It was annoying, how Asphyxious was sitting there within 7.5" of Bronzeback, but behind a wall. I fact 4.5" could have just been enough to bring Bronzeback to contact with Asphyxious if moved directly shortest route, but that would have left Bronzeback on top of a wall.

Well, needed to change plans then.

Hexeris activates and throws in his pair. He charges Bane Knights and casts Ashes to Ashes on them, killing two and casting Bronzeback's animus on Bronzeback. By the way, now as I'm writing this I realised that if I had cast the animus on Hexeris itself, I could have probably wiped out the entire unit of Knights. Oh well. Hindsight isn't as good as Eyeless Sight.

Bronzeback kills two more Bane Knights and wrecks Deathripper.

Well, Basilisk Drake had its last chance of winning me just a small moment of relief. It took one Free Strike from a Bane Knight, who missed. And then it shot Bane Lord Tartarus with boosted attack roll. Hit.

I calculated that Tartarus would die if Drake rolled 11 with three dice.

It rolled 6.

Opponents turn then looked like this:

Vengeance attack, Tartarus and activated Bane Knights kill Hexeris, who could not transfer damage, because both beasts were full on Fury.

Sweet and challenging game. Somehow Tartarus just didn't want to go down despite all I did to it. Managing my last turn a little better could have bought me another turn or not.

Using Bronzeback's animus on Hexeris and casting Black Spot on Bane Knights after charge instead of Ashes to Ashes might have worked better. Or then again, maybe not.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

When Skinwalkers Come

A couple of days ago we played a game of When Darkness Comes with out newest duo of characters, Rick Harrigan and Ninton Kanton.

They are the pair who both have only 3 health/defense.

We played the first scenario from The Horror Within expansion called "The Skinwalker".

To make the scenario a little more interesting the Nameless Mist adversaries, security, allies and a few items were added to the pile of usable disks. I had learned from the "I Want My Mummy" -scenario that much that game can become a little boring if there are very little adversaries around.

Because this meant that there were more disks than ? -slots in the 8 tile town, a houserule was invented. Once unexplored tiles run out, remaining disks are added to first tile heroes visit that doesn't have the maximum number of disks on it.

Also, D12 -house rule was made too. In this scenario it represented the evil skinwalkers growing power and attunement to the totem animal spirits. First time the dice was restored to 12 the totem adversaries got +1S and +1 Target Number to Iniative. Second time the dice was used up, they gained +1 TN to Attack score. If the die would go down to 0 for a third time, spirits would gain +1 TN to Defense score. If dice would be turned again for a fourth time, all players would just brutally lose.

With these additions the scenario was quite enjoyable.

Especially Ninton Kanton, the superior ninja fighter had to adapt in this scenario. His Persuasion skills are really rather horrible, and most often there would be only security disks around, and the scenario forced to persuade some allies to bring final victory.

This meant that he had to attack just about every security he happened to come across. Well, except for one dog. All humans he did kill, but couldn't bear to watch a rottweiler die by his hand.

This all gave him tons of victory points, but also a troublesome number of failure tokens.

Rick Harrigan didn't rush all over the place the same way, he took his time to watch his surroundings and advance more cautiously. This paid off, when it was he who found the navajo allies who would make it possible to kill the totem animal spirits.

D12 was flipped over two times during game, so at least 24 turns were played.

Game was actually quite tough contest between heroes - but Ninton had to buy off way too many failure tokens to really be a winner. He scored 17 VP's in the end, and Harrigan had over 20 but below 30. I've forgotten by now how big the total number was.

Dancing to the sound of Evil

Uh, well.

I'm not sure if this is worth a blog entry, but I bought the Touch of Evil Special Edition Soundtrack.


Because it had extra gaming cards. I thought there were more, but really, there were only 2 of them.

Quite a high price for just two cards. Maybe I need to listen the CD a couple of times to make me feel a little less stupid. The music isn't exactly bad either.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Burn, Wolf, burn! ... wait, you didn't?

Yesterday (or, technically the day before yesterday) I played a game of Warmachine, or should we call it Hordes?

It was my Skorne vs opposing Circle.

I continued to test around with epic Hexeris, and this was my 35 point list:

Lord Arbiter Hexeris
- Rhinodon
- Basilisk Drake
- Basilisk Krea
- Cyclops Shaman (bonded)

Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen
Maximum unit of Paingiver Beast Handlers
Venator Flayer Cannon
Extoller Soulward
Bloodrunner Master Tormentor

The idea this time was that I'd be having enough warbeasts to properly use Hexeris' feat even if only I had warbeasts on board. A couple of games earlier have proved that Hexeris can very well starvate himself on Fury with lousy planning.

Then, opponent was playing:

Epic Kaya + Laris
- Feral Warpwolf
- Feral Warpwolf
- Warpwolf Stalker

Shifting Stones
Druid Wilder
Lord of the Feast
2x War Wolves

Well, the game started with a sort of an omen. We rolled three times the same number on starting roll, when finally opponent rolled better than I and got to start the game. Things like that, if you're even a little bit superstitious, usually mean a tough game.

First picture is from the end of my first round. Kaya has Shadow Pack on and Forced Evolution on one of the Feral's (the unpainted one). Skorne has Ashen Veil on Praetorian Swordsmen. Oh, and Arcane Reckoning on Beast Handlers.

Well, then Circle closes a little bit in. Two War Wolves just stand there, annoying Skorne forces. Lord of the Feast throws his Raven to Cyclops Shaman, and he kills two beast handlers and the marksman from flayer cannon.

That wasn't too bad after all, considering what he could have done. Ashen Veil was a lifesaver first time during this game.

Circle had only two fury points on warpwolves, which was a bummer, because I used Hexeris' feat.

First, a lucky attack from Extoller Soulward killed Lord of the Feast exactly by dealing 8 points in. Then all of Skorne warbeast advanced a little and riled to full fury. Hexeris activated and shot Ashes to Ashes twice on a Shifting Stone. They were actually about the only models that Hexeris could target.

First Ashes to Ashes has 6 additional damage rolls. Second one has 5. Quite awesome, especially when Kaya was within 5" of target stone.

Game would obviously have been too easy if I'd been able to fry Kaya there - one of the two boosted POW 10 damage rolls came out as 1, 1, 1. Second one was better, which dealt 9 points in, which were then transfered away.

Laris took some serious damage here, and it was the reason why I charged the beast with Thrullg. With a good roll Laris would have went down, but the wannabe-Cthulhu didn't even hit, and it has Reach with only one attack. The other two attacks destroyed a shifting stone, so it did at least something.

I anticipated a feat from Kaya and was a little worried.

And - the feat did come. I lost Rhinodon and Thrullg. It could have been a lot worse, but I still lost my heavy warbeast, and had three heavy warbeasts against me.

Stalker tried to kill Praetorian Swordsmen with Berserk, but Ashen Veil saved their bacon again. Only two died.

Image is taken from the end of my next turn, because Circle warbeasts all teleported deep into the huge forest, and I did not much else except close in.

What was notable was that basilisk Krea paralysed the Warpwolf Stalker.

Extoller had given Guidance to Hexeris, so he was able to cast Ashes to Ashes on Warpwolf Stalker. Stalker didn't mind too much, but it took Druid Wilder down.

Next picture is taken again after one full round.

Opponent backed up to a nearby hill and healed up the warbeasts. Paralysation expired.

On my turn Krea tried to place it back on Stalker, but missed. It rolled 11, when it needed 12.

I tried the same shenanigan as earlier, giving Guidance to Hexeris and casting Ashes to Ashes to Warpwolf Stalker. However, the attack roll woefully missed.

And then I expected heavy losses on my warbeast front.

I just didn't expect it would go so badly. I lost all of them.

I juggled with Feralgeist in Cyclops Shaman and Basilisk Krea, but even that didn't help. It just made opponent to force Kaya's beasts a little more.

So I was left with pesky p+s 9 or 12 swords, my warcaster, rat 5 cannon and extoller to deal with three heavy warbeasts in middle of my army.

I did try my best, though!

Praetorian Swordsmen try to attack warpwolves with combo-strikes, and beast handlers charge enemy warbeasts now they don't have any of their own to handle...

Extoller tries to shoot the Feral Warpwolf at the start of turn, but as it was found out, it was engaged in melee with a swordsman. Def 20 Feral vs RAT 5 +3D6. It was a miss, let me tell you. A good miss.

Finally Hexeris himself tries to come and beat up the Forced Evolution feral, but no, it just didn't want to go down.

Then it was opponents turn, and Ashen Veil bought me another turn, really. Though swordsmen suffered heavy casualties, they weren't wiped out.

Extoller shot the Forced Evolution feral warpwolf down, and swordsmen tried to bring down Stalker. Well, they didn't manage to do that.

Venator Flayer Cannon tried to shoot almost dead Laris, but missed all attacks. It did roll a nice number of 9's, but without marksman it needed 10's.

With Laris and Warpwolf Stalker alive, I just couldn't risk charging Hexeris to Kaya. If I had killed either Stalker, I could have risked attacking Kaya even with Guard Dog bonuses (though even that would have been desperate), or with Laris dead I might have taken the small chance of surviving a free strike from Stalker.

But when situation was like this, Hexeris advanced to melee with Stalker and slayed it himself, after which Feralgeist jumped straight in.

A nice gesture, but it was game over.

Feral Warpwolf came and tasted Hexeris just a little. Only a couple limbs.