Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Witch Hound versus Witches

A couple of days ago I played a game of Warmachine first time for a little while.

It was a 35 point game, and I wanted to try out something different again.

I decided on a following list:

Witch Coven of Garlghast
- Harrower
- Nightmare
- 2x Deathrippers
- Nightwretch
- Stalker

2x Warwitch Siren

I was against Retribution of Scyrah.

Opponents list was:

- Phoenix
- Discordia

Maximum unit of Mage Hunter Strikeforce + Officer
2x Mage Hunter Assassins
Narn, Mage Hunter of Ios
Epic Eiryss
Sylys Wyshnalyrr

I did not really even realize at the beginning of the fight how funny match-up this was from rules perspective. After all, I had five Witch models in my army, and Kaelyssa was a dedicated Witch Hound. Actually I learned this in a rather costly manner...

Anyway, I won starting roll, and first picture is taken from the end of opponents first turn. And yeah, that's a heavy wreck marker already there.

I had run a little too much with Harrower, and Mage Hunter Assassin was just barely able to charge it. The distance sure looks quite big in the picture, but situation there isn't accurate, because the assassin wouldn't balance on obstacle. Anyway it was tough to make a judgement there, but if it looks to me it's a game of few millimetres that can account for a badly positioned tape measure, shaking of hands, breeze of wind or anything... I at least try to let it go in favor of the measurer. Makes game a bit faster if you don't need to spend 5 minutes to make as exact measurement as possible with zero marginal for error.

But yeah, the 2 point model did again the thing it's notorious about. It was 14-16 damage points in to Harrower. Then Strike Force finished it. I guess I should have put Occultation on Harrower instead of Nightmare.

Metal ring is Rift, and green template is Veil of Mists, by the way.

On my next turn I was contemplating if I should run Nightwretch next to Kaelyssa and start shooting Stygian Abysses at her. She had, however, used her feat to give Stealth to whole army and not being able to be charged at. Phoenix with its reach made me unsure if I could place Nightwretch not in melee AND within 5" of Kaelyssa.

So I decided to use Coven's feat instead, thinking it would protect my army enough to get an alpha strike. After all, Nightmare with Infernal Machine can charge anyhing within 13". Now it just advanced to smack Mage Hunter Assassin off the wall. Also fully boosted Stygian Abyss dropped Narn and the other Mage Hunter Assassin too. But that was all I could do.

To add a little bit more hate to Mage Hunter Strike Force, we figured out that they ignore LOS restrictions of Witch Coven's Nightfall. Okay, cool... At least they suffer the -2 to RAT.

Despite that they still shot off one arm from Nightmare, meaning no more P+S 24 Combo Strikes at prey. Which was Phoenix, at the moment.

Kaelyssa, who had Phantom Hunter on, helped Strike Force a little too once they had shot off its movement system, too. Eiryss disrupted Nightwretch.

Well, it was my turn again, and now I learned the beauty of Witch Hound. One of my Warwitch Sirens advanced full 7" and sprayed on Mage Hunter Strike Force, getting both Kaelyssa and Phoenix under, too. Luckily the shot did some damage to Kaelyssa, because only one dead Mage Hunter would just have felt bad, when it triggered two moves for Kaelyssa's battlegroup.

Phoenix shot against the Warwitch, and disgustingly scored a hit against her DEF 15. That was one dead witch.

Next witch hound move was Discordia advancing and spraying over my another Warwitch Siren and Deathripper. You can guess it right, another dead Warwitch. After all, it's the name of the ability...

Nightwretch took a pot shot at Phoenix, and did actually quite respectable damage in. However, regenerating force field pretty much nullified what the brave chicken had done.

As Discordia had moved in to spray, there was something to do for me. Half-broken Nightmare with Infernal Machine went and tried to beat up Discordia with 3 focus, but didn't really do well. If I remember right, no damage roll was over six on two dice. Something else happened, though. Terror from Infernal Machine caused Mage Hunter Strike Force to fail their command check. That was the best thing my heavy warjacks ever did in this game.

Then opponent got to punish me again. A little earlier I had been quite confident in the game, but realizing all the possibilities that witch hound screwed over made things... interesting.

Oh, and it didn't exactly help me either that Nightmare and leftmost Deathripper were wrecked and Stalker was set on fire, Nightwretch disrupted again by Eiryss, and Mage Hunter Strike Force regrouped.

I had one fully functional piece and warcaster left in my army, then, and opponent had lost only... what? Three solos and one mage hunter from unit? But because the functional piece was an arc node, and I was playing Witch Coven, it was all that was needed, right?

So I did what I needed to do. Last deathripper advanced, and a fully boosted Stygian Abyss was shot at Kaelyssa, who took lots of damage in. The hit was also a critical one, so she was Shadow Bound. However... this triggered Witch Hound, again, and before I knew it, my precious turkey was engaged in melee.

Nightwretch was disrupted, so I guess Eiryss had bought her points back in this game by removing 1/3 of Coven's arc nodes.

Coven cast Veil of Mists on the melee where burning Stalker was to allow it escape to engage Mage Hunter Strike Force. It didn't kill even a single one of them.

Sooo... that was it for me, then. Opponents turn again.

Mage Hunter Strike Force nail a huge Combined Melee Attack against Stalker and wreck it in one hit. Kaelyssa and Eiryss destroy Nightwretch finally.

Phoenix comes and tries to destroy last remaining Deathripper, and, funnily enough, it is set on fire by Phoenix's thermal blade and almost wrecked for good. However... it had three boxes left in column 4. One arc node and two movement or cortex or whatever there is.

I still had a chance! Ghost Walk on Deathripper, get Kaelyssa in Line of Sight, Stygian Abyss and return home victorious!

Well, then comes my turn.

Deathripper burns to ashes.

So... situation is, I have no models other than my warcaster, who can't even go into "tank" mode.

A really ridiculous idea comes up in my mind. One of my witches advances and loses Perfect Conjunction. Egregore then runs as far as possible. Another witch advances then to get Line of Sight to Kaelyssa.

She casts a fully boosted Stygian Abyss (for five focus...) and deals 6 points in.

Kaelyssa had only 3 boxes left.

I don't know if this win was epic or stupid. But no matter how much I read the cards, and after the game searched rules forum on Privateer Press' home forums, I couldn't find anything that made this move illegal.

But it sure does feel illegal, so if anyone spots an error there, I'd be grateful to know about it. Anonymous commenting should be allowed in this blog.

However, I think it was played completely within rules, and thus it becomes one of the weirdest wins I've ever had. I guess this, where enemy loses only 4 models during match, is where Cryx commanders say: "It's all going according to the plan!"

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