Saturday, December 28, 2013

Jolly Good Genocides Before Christmas

I had also packed up Smallworld with me when I came to spend some Christmas time.

We had time to play two games, one with four players and one with five. Descriptions will be brief, because it's been quite a while since these games were played.

As there was a person who had not played Smallworld, first game was played with no extras.

I'm not quite sure what happened there. Mounted Skeletons/Fortified Wizards combo won the game. It's very rare to see someone triumph by going in decline only once, but here two such players got pretty decent points. If the race combos would have played other way around (Fortified Wizards/Mounted Skeleton and Diplomatic Sorcerers/Dragon Master Pygmies) I think both would have scored a lot more points.

Again I noticed how much the Kobolds suck as a secondary race. They pretty much need to be either first race or chosen when your In Decline race is all but destroyed.

Final scoreboard:

Mounted Skeletons/Fortified Wizards: 87
Wealthy Elves/Seafaring Kobolds/Merchant Leprechaun: 85
Dragon Master Pygmies/Diplomatic Sorcerers: 78
Peace-Loving Goblins/Forest Orcs/Mercenary Amazons: 71



Game2
Second game was played with full board just a day before Christmas. This time we had the Tales and Legends card deck with all the cards shuffled and drawn randomly.

For reference I'm writing down the cards and the turn where they were in effect:

2. Forbidden Forest
3. Flooded!
4. The Art of Combos
5. Gift from the Sky
6. Wizened and old
7. Necromantic Elixir
8. Forest Clump

Three first turns were quite interesting, because both turn 2 and turn 3 had effects that made certain regions unconquerable. For that reason Flying Trolls were a pretty damn good choice, and Heroic Sorcerers, too. Fortified Tritons could've been quite nice too, but they were pretty much beaten and mauled by other races in just one turn. They went in decline right on turn 2.

The Art of Combos on 4th turn was the Imperial special power. Were-Amazons switched to Goblins and they won the auction too. So we were looking at Corrupt Imperial Goblins with a huge fallen Were-Amazon empire to back them up. I believe other players should have already started to beat Amazons at this point, but everyone was busy wrecking Sorcerers and in-decline Trolls by then. Goblins reigned unopposed.

Once Sorcerers went in decline, Seafaring White Ladies tried to cleave four lenght unconquerable in decline empire, but their actions were thwarted, and Sorcerers were surrering pretty much by Barricade Gypsies (a horrible combo, by the way! Would be pretty succesful as a second race) and Mounted Wizards.

Wizened and Old cleared a lot of old races away from board. Last of trolls and sorcerers disappeared.

Corrupt Imperial Goblins won the auction for Necromantic Elixir and they went in decline right away.

Gypsies had finally started anew with Swamp Orcs, who finally started attacking the Amazons of old. But that was way too late. Barbarians had tried to kill some Amazons too, but they went in decline when they were still controlling 5 regions, and punishing Amazons stopped right there.

Mounted Wizards gave way to Catapult Pygmies, and Stout Barbarians picked Berserker Dwarves from the start of turn 6. Nobody really attacked the dwarves, so they could just build their lilliputian mining colony. Berserker Dwarves could've been pretty bad choice otherwise, but they had been skipped six or seven times already.

Anyway... once the goblins went in decline (still fully functional!) and emerged as Hill Ratmen, the game was pretty much over already. The player was getting 18-20 points per turn during turns 6-8.

After counting up there were no suprises - those damn goblins really won the game.


Final scoreboard:

Were-Amazons/Corrupt Imperial Goblins/Hill Ratmen: 103
Flying Trolls/Mounted Wizards/Catapult Pygmies: 91
Fortified Tritons/Stout Barbarians/Berserker Dwarves: 87
Barricade Gypsies/Swamp Orcs: 78
Heroic Sorcerers/Seafaring White Ladies/Historian Giants: 66

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Miserable tragedies just before Christmas (Gloom)

Tomorrow (probably today when I've finished writing this) is the Christmas eve.

Before that we had to witness countless tragedies that crippled the hearts and lives of various family members in a world filled only with Gloom.

I'll summarise the highlights of the two game played, and lastly write something about the game itself.

First game was played with 3 players, and even this first play revealed quite a few horrific happenstances and interesting stories.

Darius Dark, the failed circus ringmaster, lived quite an interesting life. He had a severe alcohol problem that supposedly stem from the fact that even the neighbouring group of lame children was more skillful and entertaining than Darius's shows. For a brief moment his life - outside of the circus - was quite good. No wonder he didn't want to go back. He even had a wonderful marriage arranged for him - but that was also his downfall. Bride never showed up and Darius was ditched at the altar. He wanted and tried to die many times, but something always came in between. Eventually he had to crawl back to his circus, only to find out that he himself was the only living member left.

Mr. Giggles, the clown, also had quite a remarkable story. Being a clown, he obviously had to deal with children. There were, however, some evidence that Mr. Giggles suffered from some sort of phobia towards children - when he was chased by children, he felt that he was being hunted by horrors. To make matters worse - the phobia wasn't irrational. It made sense perfectly, when one of the children, his own kid in fact, killed him.

Balthazar, the almost loyal dog from another family, was also living the dream. For a while, at least. Balthazar went to a picnic with his family, and none of us, the players, got to know what exactly happened during that picnic, but the end result was that the poor dog was shunned by society ever after. That, however, was a real good step ladder to enter the parliament, and Balthazar was indeed quite succesful there. He could have probably won the next elections, until something unspeakable happened... again. This time Balthazar was cursed by the queen herself. That dog really did hide something heinous within his soul.

These were the bigger story arcs I remember from the first game. Other characters had good (bad?) things going on, and two highest final scores were 110 and 105, so it was quite close game, too!

Game 2:

After two days we played another game of Gloom, this time with four players. This game took actually at least twice the time it took to play a 3 player game.

Anyway, there were some highly entertaining tragedies.

Most amazing story was the story of the work-in-progress grooming teddybear from the frankensteinish family. He was forgotten in a train, probably on purpose, for not too long after its brains started to show signs of some serious infection - the teddybear's brains (the only organic part of it) were suffering from painful boils. Next the tormented patchwork teddy started dreaming some delirious dreams... Everything was good, everything was perfect, it found love in the train, and yes, yes! There was even a priest in the same train car, and teddy was wondrously well wed! But then... then it woke up. There was no marriage, there was no priest, only it being forgotten in some dark corner of a train with painful, debilitating boils slowly destroying whatever ability it had to realise it's situation. The train traveled on, and the teddy never returned...

Circus had some strange happenings, too. Samson O'Toole, the bearded man, was very unsuccesful in the circus. He was quite the simpleton. Once he won in some card game quite a bit of money, and felt quite good about it. But wealth alone does not make a man. With his beard he had quite a resemblance to the current president, and so he was mistaken in the parliament. Everyone tried to gain his attention, he was loved by all. However... such a mistake doesn't live forever. Soon he was kicked out, and Samson went back to the circus. Well, at least he won once with the cards. Later he borrowed his beard for Angel, when she too became very popular at the parliament.

Darius Dark, the ringmaster, had done some quite shady dealings in the past with completely wrong persons. He was jinxed by the gypsies, and misfortunes started to follow him. Eventually someone pushed him down the stairs, and that was the end of him.

Mr. Giggles got only a slightly better life than in last game. Instead of being chased by children, he was being chased by poodles. After a nice little picnic to the city park, coming back to the circus he found that he had been written out of the will. And it was quite curious that Thumbelisa had landed on quite a legacy... Counting one plus one, Mr. Giggles went mildly mad. Next morning he was found dead, and he had fallen from a great height. Did he jump himself, or were there some darker powers behind all of this?

Thumbelisa did survive all possible tragedies. So maybe it wasn't so bad that she had possibly made some... adjustments to the will of the ringmaster. She went to a dance, but her height became an issue there and she was disgraced. Weeping bitterly she ran to the moors, where she got lost and got marooned rather badly. To make matters worse, a lone bear found her and ate her, thinking she was a rabbit of sorts. Bear possibly forgot to bite, so Thumbelisa cut her way through the bear's stomach and came back to the circus.

The evil twins of the top hat family were wondrously well wed even before the age of consent, which indeed was quite disturbing. But before anything entirely morally wrong happened, they got both sick from a salmon they ate at the wedding. There were also some maggots in the meat. But the salmon... the salmon was really bad. They caught a consumption from it, and died shortly after.

Balthazar wasn't very politically active this time, in fact he was quite neglected and early in the game he died of despair. Aww, poor dog.



So... the game does offer some awesomely disturbing happenings and weird stories. Gloom is a very good game, but even these two games revealed a bit of an annoying fact: there are too few cards. There was inevitably some repetition, so either the game needs to be played rarely, or you need to buy expansion.

I'm opting out on the last one, probably buying the Unhappy Homes expansion next.

Anyway. Maybe we just got the right cards to drag the game on unnecessarily long in our four player game, but the discard pile had to be shuffled over twice, whereas in the three player game it needed no reshuffling (though it was very, very close).

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Frozen Wolves (Warmachine)

Then right the next day (from last game) I played against Khador.

Since every warcaster and warlock have already played against Khador, I wanted to stack even more games to Kaya to make her as played as my other Circle warlocks.

Nice otherwise, but it was a sheer moment of horror when I saw what I was against.

It was the prime version of Sorscha with a full unit of Croe's Cutthroats with Valachev.

And of course now I went even more beast heavy than I usually go, at least points-wise.

Anyway, my list (it was a 35 point game):

Kaya the Wildborne
- Feral Warpwolf
- Pureblood Warpwolf
- Gnarlhorn Satyr
- Scarsfell Griffon

Maximum unit of Wolves of Orboros + Unit Attachment
Druid Wilder

Opponent had:

Sorscha the original version
- 2x Juggernaut

Maximum unit of Kayazy Assassins + Underboss
Maximum unit of Croe's Cutthroats + Valachev
Harlan Versh
Orin Midwinter

Circle got the start, though Khador won the roll. I guess opponent didn't want Circle to go into forests, and there were a lot less LOS blocking terrain on the Circle's side.

First picture is from the end of Khador turn 1.

Next turn I would've liked to charge Feral Warpwolf into one of the juggernauts, but that wouldn't succeed unless Pureblood Warpwolf cleared two Kayazy Assassins from the way with the spray attack. Neither roll hit, even with a boost.

Ah well. Feral Warpwolf then charged the Kayazy Assassins instead, and killed three of them. Afterwards Kaya called both Feral and Pureblood back to relative safety.

Next Sorscha casts Tempest so that Gnarlhorn Satyr was knocked down. Then all the Cutthroats closed in and took shots at Gnarlhorn Satyr. Damage rolls weren't exactly high or anything, but they did some damage nonetheless. Even pow 10 with three dice is bound to give something in to an ARM 18 target that's missed only on double 1's. Then they backed off a little with Zephyr from Valachev.

Kayazy Assassins charged/ran to melee with the warbeasts and Wolves of Orboros. Not many of them got to charge, but of course Circle's main body was now engaged with Def 16 targets.

Then it was my turn again, and what an annoying turn it was! The knocked down Satyr who had lost its Spirit branch blocked every good action I could take.

I ended up with activating Kaya first, taking Gnarlhorn off from blocking things and then Pureblood Warpwolf sprayed with an aiming bonus the couple Kayazys that were blocking Feral's charge. Feral took 5 points of damage from that spray, too. And then when the Feral charged one of the juggernauts with STR warped up, nothing happened. Yeah, it did at least average, if not even above average damage in, but the columns were so evenly spread out that not even one system broke down.

Also Kaya had already activated, so I wouldn't be able to get the warpwolf away from there. So it was a piece-trade where Circle didn't get its half of the trade.

Wolves of Orboros and Scarsfell Griffon were trying to kill the Kayazy Assassins, but Def 16 was just too high for them to handle. Maybe two of the Assassins died in that melee to Combined Melee Attacks by the infantry; none died to MAT 8 Scarsfell Griffon.

I had a really bad feeling now of things to come. I mean... it was granted that Sorscha would use her feat now.

And yeah.

I think my only saving grace was that Croe's Cutthroats weren't rolling that good, again.

Feral Warpwolf just laughed down with its ARM 16 against automatically hitting melee attacks by juggernaut. The juggernaut had enough Focus even to take a swing at the center objective, which defied the odds and didn't get destroyed.

As Kaya was behind the heavy warbeasts, she didn't get under Sorscha's feat.

Gnarlhorn Satyr just refused to die when Cutthroats started raining death over it. Thanks to many unsuccesful rolls, I believe, Pureblood Warpwolf stayed pretty much alive, so much in fact that not a single branch broke down.

Then another juggernaut lumbered forward and smacked my beautiful little lionbird with a couple swings. It also moved in base contact with the objective marker, blocking any LOS to Sorscha herself.

So... my turn started with a frozen Pureblood warpwolf, about five or so frozen wolves of orboros, and two functional wolves of orboros, the other one of them being the flag bearer.

Circle was so mauled and beaten up at this point that there was absolutely no question about winning the game in any honorable way.

There seemed to be one "all or nothing" approach, and that's what I tried.

Pureblood shook off the Stationary effect, warped for Ghostly, walked up a bit and sprayed at the objective marker. In this scenario they were only ARM 15 models, and would explode and deal pow 12 damage roll to all models within 2" and set them on fire.

Thankfully Pureblood managed to destroy it (well, it didn't have many damage points left anyway, but crappy rolls that ruin everything aren't completely unheard of) and as an added bonus one of the Kayazy Assassins was just within 2" of the objective. Sorscha didn't have any focus on, so she took some damage from the pow 12 hit, too.

And then came the question if Kaya could land a critical hit against Def 18 Sorscha early enough with 10 Fury available (6 on herself and 4 with her feat from the Pureblood)

After having burned up 4 Fury, Kaya got in one hit, but it wasn't a critical one. Damage was quite nice, however. Two Fury left she bought extra attack... miss. Of course. Well, then Kaya got 4 Fury from her feat, bought extra attack, boosted, and finally scored a critical hit.

I don't remember if I boosted damage and bought one auto-hitting attack that finished Sorscha, or if I just used the Fury to buy auto-hits. End result was, however, that Sorscha died.

Victory in this one was a real stretch. I actually felt that I shouldn't have won because I took such heavy damage. However, this game was probably a perfect example of one of the nice aspects of Warmachine and Hordes - even if you take a severe, crippling beating like the Teletubbies used to back in the time, there might still be a sudden chance to win.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Bye Bye Titan got to do its trick

Before coming to visit my family I played a couple of Warmachine games, and here is one of those.

As I knew I was playing against Cygnar, I wanted to fill "every warlock and warcaster having played against Cygnar" achievement, so I took Skorne, and my list was (a 25 point game):

Lord Tyrant Hexeris
- Bronzeback Titan
- Basilisk Drake
- Basilisk Krea

Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + Unit Attachment
Minimum unit of Beast Handlers
Totem Hunter

And opponent was trying out a new warcaster, that turned out to be Nemo1. So that wasn't really the best match-up for Nemo.

Anyway, opponent had:

Nemo1
- Ironclad
- Lancer

Black 13th
Junior Warcaster
- Charger
3x Stormsmiths
Arlan Strangewayes
Squire

All of that was quite unexpected, and even if I was playing Hordes against pNemo, at least I wouldn't be able to get a huge mileage out of Lord Tyrant's feat.

I think Skorne started the game, and first picture is taken from the end of Skorne turn 2. Lancer has the +2 damage roll spell on it and Ironclad has Arcane Shield from junior warcaster. Basilisk Krea had Soul Slave from the Skorne side of things, and Praetorian Swordsmen had Death March on.

The big AoE on Totem Hunter is the arcane sight template from one of the B13th which scattered exactly above its target, removing stealth and everything. Another one of B13th took a Snipe shot against it, but luckily it didn't die.

Next turn Charger took a shot at Bronzeback Titan, and then Lancer with 5 focus charged Bronzeback Titan. I wasn't sure what to expect out of all of this, but in any case damage rolls should've been excessive to harm Bronzeback in any fatal way. Well, they weren't excessive. In fact they sucked. I guess this was the biggest single thing that mattered during whole game.

Black 13th finish Totem Hunter and damage basilisk Drake, and Ironclad advances mid-field.

On my next turn Bronzeback wrecked both the Charger and Lancer, and if it hadn't rolled so high damage against Lancer, it could have gone and whack Ironclad, too, all this thanks to Train Wreck (that was cast on the Bronzeback via Hexeris).

Bronzeback was in quite bad position there, though. Ironclad could easily charge it next turn. Praetorian Swordsmen charged against Ironclad, and five of them could go into base to base contact with the warjack. That meant ten attacks with MAT 8. Hammer was what needed to go down for Bronzeback to survive, so all of the praetorians did one automatic point of damage. All of them managed to hit Ironclad, so the hammer was gone. Take that, Nihilators! This was a thing you couldn't have succeeded in.

Basilisk Drake manages to spray one of the Black 13th member away.

My achilles heel is usually leaving my warcaster way too vulnerable to such things as Trample. This time I remembered to block that option from opponent, but now when I look at the picture in some other situation Hexeris would be asking to getting slammed. I'd like to say that "I saw no threat in placing swordsmen to protect Hexeris thus, because in given situation there was no models capable of slamming them to Hexeris" but the truth here is... I didn't even consider and/or remember the existence of a Slam power attack.

Anyway. Nemo did what he could - he cast Chain Lightning on praetorian swordsmen that I had for some clever reason (= no reasoning behind it at all) moved out of the protection of melee. This and Ironclad itself cleared quite a bit of the swordsmen.

Arlan Strangewayes attempted to run to Ironclad so that he might possibly fix the warjack next turn after Bronzeback had mauled it. It turned out that Bronzeback mauled Arlan with a counter-charge.

Nemo used his feat during this turn, and if I remember right it dealt only a couple of points to basilisk Drake, and double 6's to either basilisk Krea or the Bronzeback.

Next it was Skorne's turn, and Cygnar lost pretty much all other models except Nemo.

Game ended in scenario victory for Skorne.

Bronzeback really was the king of this game - it suprised even me how one-sided the game turned out to be, thanks to the contributions made by the beast.

Overall it was quite tough match-up for Nemo. But at least the old guy survived without any broken bones.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

I hate my life and want (my family members) to die

It's been a while since I bought any new games.

Yesterday, however, such a thing happened.

I've disliked actual card games for some time now (I'm a sucker for all kinds of tiny bits in games, and while cards can be part of a game, I don't like it too much when they are the game) but now I bought one.

I got the basic set for Gloom. The goal in Gloom is to make life as miserable as possible for the members of your in-game family before they finally die, and at the same time try to make other players' in-game families as cheerful as possible.

Such a disturbed goal for a game was enough for me to win my distrust of card games.

Oh boy. I can't wait for the loved and loyal family dog to die of consumption.

Monday, December 16, 2013

StellarSkill - The Tactical Boardgame (AKA getting in touch with your inner Archon)

Well now, his write-up is something completely different for a change.

I was playing and playtesting a homebrew boardgame that used hexagon board and miniatures from the old Starcraft board game from Fantasy Flight Games.

First of all - I don't know what to write. I mean that any references to rules will not tell anyone anything about the game itself. So maybe I just ditch any attempt to make this write-up readable to anyone not familiar to the game. Which is not a very big group of people.

Also because the rules may be adjusted this write-up will serve only as a document what happened during game on 15th of December 2013 with the rule-set that was available then.

Few things about the game itself - players took turns where you activated all of your army with each unit rolling dice to see how well they activated. Failing this activation roll resulted in quite limited options during activation. At the start of every turn players also rolled dice to see who got to play their turn first - possibly giving the player two turns in a row.

When I was reading the rules first on my own and not actually having played the game I was a bit concerned how big an advantage first player would get. There was, however, a clever trick in the rules that removed most of the advantages of getting first turn or even two turns in a row. Any casualties and/or damage inflicted took effect only after both players had resolved their turns. This meant that the player who was playing second during a round could still play a full turn even if some units had already suffered enough hits to get killed.

Anyway, first we played a small game of zergs vs terrans. Back in the times of Starcraft I was a zerg and protoss fan. I took zerg for this first game, and wanted to try out the ol' basic zergling rush. I also wanted to try out how well game rules would handle quantity vs quality mentality.

And there seemed to be no real problem at least in this match-up. Terrans in much fewer numbers made for a tough game, though in the end zergs managed to kill all terrans who had any attacks at their disposal. We didn't, however, play exactly to the scenario requirements, so it's a bit unclear which side actually won.

Next game was a big one with terrans vs protoss, where I was trying out the terrans.

This game was dominated by science vessels which had a disruption ability. Of course that feeling could've spawned from match-up, too. Terrans had two battlecruisers, whose amazing damage output was quite good countermeasure against the shields of protoss. At first protoss were winning by the scenario in question, but an atom bomb to the right and battlecruiser and a crapton of other attacks in the middle secured a majority of control points for terrans later in the game.

But as was said, science vessel and their disruption abilities were a big hinderance to protoss, and they themselves were nigh invulnerable when backed up with a Medic.

All in all, the core rules felt pretty solid on this homebrew game.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Power Boost my brain next, Warwitch Siren

Tuesday I played Warmachine again with the same opponent who played last game.

This time we randomised a scenario which proved to be Rally Point.

I continued playing Cryx, and my 25 point list was:

Iron Lich Asphyxious
- Erebus
- Nightwretch
- Nightwretch
- Cankerworm

Minimum unit of Bile Thralls
Warwitch Siren
Skarlock
Necrotech & Scrap Thrall

Opponent had:

Stryker1 (I still don't remember the title...)
- Lancer

Journeyman Warcaster
- Ironclad

Black 13th
Minimum unit of Storm Lances
Stormsmith
Squire
Reinholdt the gobber speculator

Again there are some proxies in the pictures. Nemo is Stryker's journeyman warcaster (how wrong is that, fluffwise?) Mechanic unit leader is Reinholdt and a gobber mechanic is Squire. Black 13th is formed from Caine the Ryan, and Watts & Lynch, the Long Gunners.

Cryx started second, and first picture is from the end of Cygnar's turn 2. Thus far Cankerworm took a horrible damage roll from a non-charging Storm Lance, and the ranged attack from another Storm Lance killed a Scrap Thrall, and ensuing electro leap took Necrotech with it. B13 took over half damage boxes away from Erebus, though no systems went down yet.

That was a bad start. Really bad.

Next turn I try to take out the Storm Lances by giving Cankerworm two focus and casting Parasite on the cavalry unit.

Cankerworm obviously misses the first attack, but buy another one and kills one Storm Lance. Sadly that could have easily been two. Well, then Cankerworm tries to advance with affinity from Asphyxious to engage Lancer, but 6" movement wasn't just enough.

Warwitch Siren gives Power Booster to Erebus, who then runs to engage B13. Erebus tried to run so that Ironclad wouldn't be able to charge it, but next turn I learned that B13 has Gunfighter. So Erebus pretty much ran just to kill itself.

Except this time around Black 13th didn't roll so exceptionally high damage rolls, and only a few damage rolls exceeded armour. Ironclad ran right next to Erebus. Stryker then activated, advanced, shot the Nightwretch with the disruption pistol and used his feat. Lancer & Storm Lances try to wither Cankerworm away, but the pesky thing loses only its head (the armor piercing attack).

Ring you see in picture is Mage Storm from Cryan.

Next turn pretty much all I tried failed.

Erebus took its two tries against Black 13th, but missed both. Cankerworm hit the Storm Lance, but did only two points in. Storm Lance on the hill actually died to Hellfire either from Asphyxious or Skarlock.

Asphyxious missed the Storm Lance in melee, but I still thought that a bile thrall could come and Purge it away. So Asphyxious used his feat and teleported to enemy zone. The bile thrall in question looked like it was short from Purge range, so I decided to use he spray attack instead. Well, now. RAT 3 missed, what a suprise. To my consolence yeah, the bile thrall was out of purge range.

Well it was desperate plan anyway, but still it wasn't too absurd. I could have started dominating on that turn.

Next turn Ironclad downs Erebus in two hits.

Black 13th don't overperfom because one of them misses an attack against Nightwretch. It still has arc node intact. However... Stryker activates, walks up, casts Earthquake and shoots the wretch. Damage roll is quite poor and it still has arc node, but the bonejack is disrupted and knocked down. Not a good thing, really.

Much to my amazement Cankerworm survived a charge from Lancer and initial attacks from the lone Lancer. With one damage box remaining in Movement system. That hilariousness stays for quite a while...

Anyway, it could have been a lot worse. And I saw actually a pretty decent opportunity to kill Stryker.

Nightwretch on the hill runs as far as it only can, and then Asphyxious casts Breath of Corruption on Reinholdt, who was standing right next to Stryker. Stryker takes some 8 points of damage. Rest of focus go into beating up Lancer, but not much is done.

Then two bile thralls walk as far as possible. One purge deals a few damage points, but the last purge is just out of range. Damn.

Oh, and Cankerworm manages to kill the Storm Lance. Finally.

Then Cygnar shoots Warwitch Siren, and Stryker himself charges and puts the disrupted Nightwretch out from misery. Lancer scored only one decent hit against Asphyxios.

The lone Stormsmith tries to disrupt the last Nightwretch, but I lucked out when he failed the skill check.

So now I had yet another chance to kill Stryker! Awesome!

Nightwretch advances as far as possible, and then Asphyxious advances and casts two Breath of Corruptions on Stryker. The damage rolls weren't too good, and Stryker is still left standing with 4 hit boxes remaining. Looks like I forgot to take a picture from this turn, but you can all see the Nightwretch's wreck on which Stryker is triumphantly standing. Damn. Did the poster boy really destroy two of my arcnodes by himself?

Black 13th shoot Skarlock, and when it's my turn again I only have Asphyxious with about half damage boxes remaining and Cankerworm with only one damage box. The bonejack had survived all these turns.

I was so severely outnumbered, that I attempted final, desperate assassination.

Asphyxious charged stormsmith (missed, how else) and there was now a couple of options. Either I cast a fully boosted Hellfire at Stryker (one chance, needed to roll 13+ to hit) or two Breath of Corruptions (two 33% chances to hit by deviating only 1-2 inches).

I chose the Breath of Corruption way, but neither spell hit.

Next turn Asphyxious was standing all alone against the whole enemy army.

Ironclad attacked Asphyxious and even with full hit boxes it would have one-hitted Asphyxious. Ouch.

Looking back at the game I think I should have sacrificed one Nightwretch to kill Ryan and the other guy from Black 13h with a Breath of Corruption, but I wasn't entirely sure if 3" template would cover both of them. Probably yes. I was thinking that I need to get rid of Storm Lances quite fast, because they'd be a hard and mobile nut to crack on Stryker's feat turn. Black 13th would still die to a boosted Breath of Corruption. Before I got there, however, my arc nodes started getting disrupted. And I actually realise now when I'm writing this that, heh.. yeah.

Ahhahhahhah.

Warwitch Siren knows how to take disruption away. I'm such a fool.

Anyway, a really close game again.

I believe next I will be playing Skorne.

Monday, December 9, 2013

+8 Arm does not a happy Harrower make

Last Saturday I played a game of Warmachine with a new player who has been starting out. And what a game it was...

I knew that he'd be playing Cygnar.

Looking at my excel spreadsheets, I saw that Venethrax had never played against Cygnar. For sure he isn't the best choice against Cygnar, but I thought that it'd even the gap in experience a little, and it'd be good practice for me too.

So, my 25 point list was:

Lich Lord Venethrax
- Harrower
- Defiler
- Nightwretch

Maximum unit of Mechanithralls + 2x Brute Thralls
Necrosurgeon & Stitch Thralls
Skarlock
Necrotech & Scrap Thrall

Opponent was playing with:

Stryker1
- Ironclad

Journeyman Warcaster
- Charger

Minimum unit of Long Gunners + Unit Attachment
Minimum unit of Storm Lances
Squire

And that really was something I wouldn't have expected.

Game was a crazy grindfest, and it continued for many, many turns. Two Arcane Shields and Stryker's feat really brings some survivability to Cygnar, and of course I was playing the Cryxian warcaster who had no defense or armor debuffs.

A word about proxies in pictures: Caine is the Long Gunner officer, Nemo is the standard bearer, a gobber is the Squire, and Stormsmith is the Journeyman Warcaster.

Well, anyway. Cryx got to start the game. First picture is actually taken from the end of Cygnaran second turn. What has happened so far is that Long Gunners who had Snipe on them devastated much of Mechanithrall unit. One Storm Lance had died to spray from Defiler and a fully boosted Hellfire from Scaverous. Because Scaverous was sitting focusless, I thought I might just as well use his feat and screen my army a little by killing two Mechanithralls by myself.

Venethrax chose Lamentation as his upkeep of choice. Cygnar had no arc nodes, so I thought that at least Venethrax would be safe from any Earthquakes and whatnot.

I think I really messed up my start of the game by not bringing Mechanithralls to right and Harrower to left. Stryker has his +5 arm feat going on in the picture. For some reason I decide to just run & charge Mechanithralls to engage Long Gunners, and charge to Ironclad with Harrower. I thought that if I only could do at least some damage (not much, but with good rolls maybe 5-6 points in?) with Harrower against Arm 26 Ironclad, and then Ironclad wouldn't kill Harrower in a single round, it'd be a good trade.

Harrower did one damage in with two damage boosted attacks, and Ironclad one-rounded it. Uh oh. And as an insult to injury, none of the four attacks I could do with Mechanithralls against Long Gunners hit their target.

And then, as a decapitation to injury, MAT 4 P+S 7 Long Gunners go all kinds of crazy in melee, and kill three out of four engaging Mechanithralls with melee attacks. Rest of the gunners shoot even more Mechanithralls, and then Storm Lances come and attempt to finish the unit for good. Only two thralls remain, and situation starts to look a bit grim for Cryx.

I decided to bring Venethrax to the front. He charged Ironclad and took a couple of swings at it. He camped four focus, but still I kind of expected him to die, since nothing of consequence broke down in that charge. Stryker and Journeyman Warcaster were, however, well within Lamentation range.

Mechanithralls multiply by hard efforts from Necrosurgeon, and then they charge. All attacks against Long Gunners miss, as do most other attacks too, except for one good combo-strike by one of the thralls against Storm Lances. So after all I did manage to kill one model during that turn.

I have skipped one turn in pictures here, because the pictures looked rather similar. Anyway, what happened during Cygnar's turn was:

Long Gunners beat up Mechanithralls in melee again. Ranged attacks were made against Necrosurgeon, who lucked out - last combined ranged attack targetted against her missed with double 1's, when she had no longer sacrificial pawn models close by.

Ironclad fumbles its activation and brings Venethrax only down to 11 hit boxes remaining. I don't remember what the Storm Lance was up to.

Defiler and Charger had been duking it out on the right for some time now, and if I remember correctly, Defiler was hammered so badly that only its Movement system was still functional.

On my turn I thought that wrecking Ironclad would now be a piece of cake. First attack by Venethrax against it was very succesful indeed and broke down its hammer. I decided to speed up the game a little, and started buying attacks with Venethrax. Success for any of the bought attacks was nowhere close to the first... and at the end of my turn, Venethrax was sitting focusless right next to Ironclad who had its fist and cortex still operational. Well, crap.

Mechanithralls manage to kill the last Storm Lance, and one of them even scored a hit in melee against Long Gunners!

Well, then. I was quite sure Venethrax would die again now, but Ironclad managed to score only one decent hit against Venethrax that brought him down to 3 boxes. Second bought attack hit, but did no damage thanks to abysmal damage roll.

Long Gunners and Stryker himself are unlucky, too. One of the Mechanithralls defy all attempts to kill it, and so does Necrosurgeon. If I remember correctly, Necrosurgeon survived with one box remaining.

Then it's Cryxian turn again.

This time Venethrax manages to wreck the Ironclad, and even scores a hit with a fully boosted Hellfire against Stryker. Damage roll was rather disappointing, though, when the POW 14 +3d6 bolt dealt something like 5 points in against Arm 16 Stryker.

Necrosurgeon brings even more Mechanithralls on board, and finally they actually did something. They killed enough Long Gunners to provoke a Command check, which was failed.

And then Cygnarans got to activate.

Long Gunners failing their check was immense help, but still I was nowhere safe. Charger loaded up with 3 Focus came and took two shots at Venethrax. Venethrax was camping 1 Focus and he was behind wrecks, so he was effectively Def 19 Arm 17. So if Charger rolled once 13+ on three dice and then 8+ with three dice, Venethrax would be dead. Luckily for me, both attacks missed.

Stryker casts Arcane Shield on himself and charges Nightwretch. I don't remember the damage done, but the bonejack was engaged now, and disrupted anyway. Stryker had Arcane Shield and enough focus to bring him to Arm 19.

And then it was my turn.

I was pretty confident I would win now if Necrotech managed to remove Ironclad's wreck marker. The roll was success, and Venethrax had clear charge lane to Stryker. So I charged to end the game that had lasted for about three rounds too long already thanks to critical dice failures made by both players.

Charge attack missed.

Second attack missed.

Then Venethrax hits, but does next to no damage. Then he missed again, and with last possible attack he does enough damage to bring Stryker down to 1 hit box remaining.

No way. Just... no way.

I still hadn't activated Mechanithralls or Necrosurgeon. They were my last chance.

Necrosurgeon creates two thralls into Stryker's back arc, and one to his front. Nobody even got a charge bonus.

The two Mechanihralls on the back needed 9+ to hit, and the one in front needed 11+ to hit. Not good chances by any means, but first thrall who made its combo-strike rolled exactly 9, and enough damage to kill the poster boy.


So. It was pretty amazing game. In all honesty, I think Venethrax should've died when he charged the Ironclad. But for some reason the dice decided against it. In matter of fact it felt like the dice wanted for the game to go on and on, never to end.

If I do my math right 15-18 new Mechanithralls were created during this game. And that was again thanks to the dice 1) making Mechanithralls die in troves and 2) not killing Necrosurgeon, no matter the odds.

But I go to sleep now.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Where do all these little wizards come from? (Smallworld)

Uh, makes me wonder if it's worth to drag an entire biggish board-game to another side of my country just to play one game?

Apparently it is. I played a game of Smallworld at my friends place in Salo, Finland.

We got three players for this game. I had forgotten Tales & Legends card deck at home, so it was a vanilla game with all the races from expansions.

First race combos chosen were Mounted Ghouls (which is slightly disturbing thought), Commando Giants (even more disturbing) and Stout Skeletons.

Ghouls went in decline right at the start of turn 2, but giants and skeletons played a little longer, though for skeletons that didn't matter much.

Corrupt Humans continued Ghouls' legacy, and it turned out this pairing was quite nice. No-one wanted to attack Humans because of their Corrupt special power.

Commando Giants were replaced by Peace-Loving Ratmen, and Pillaging Pygmies started stomping around right where the skeletons left off.

This was a curious part of the game. War was waged on Decline races rather than active tokens, thanks to Peace-Loving and Corrupt being on board at the same time.

When just about all the giants were taken out, Ratmen went in decline and the player took Barricade White Ladies, that in fact had quite nice stack of victory points from previous skippings. Pillaging Pygmies went away next and Heroic Priestesses entered the fray.

Ghouls/Corrupt Humans had eventually go to decline too, as just about all ghouls were wiped out, and even a couple courageous attacks had diminished the number of still living Humans. Swamp Barbarians was the new race chosen.

Both of the Barricade White Ladies and Heroic Priestesses went in decline so that they could play last few turns with a fresh race. Giants/Ratmen/White Ladies chodr Hordes of Wizards, and damn, there were some wizards, then.

Priestesses took Cursed Orcs that had 6-9 victory points on them.

And then it was time to count the points.

Mounted Ghouls/Corrupt Humans/Swamp Barbarians: 118
Commando Giants/Peace-Loving Ratmen/Barricade White Ladies/Hordes of Wizards: 114
Stout Skeletons/Pillaging Pygmies/Heroic Priestesses/Cursed Orcs: 99

... so all in all rather close game, with every player scoring quite a lot of points every round.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Cross-demo (again)

Two weeks ago I demo'd Warmachine.

I asked if the player wanted test Warmachine or Hordes, and as it turned out, we played a couple of cross-demo games.

Hordes was played with:

Kaya the Wildborne (12 points)
- Feral Warpwolf
- Gorax
- Scarsfell Griffon

And Cryxian list was:

Iron Lich Asphyxious (12 points)
- Seether
- Defiler
- Deathripper

We played two games so that we switched factions. This was a funny little dilemma again - since we played two games, should they be added to the statistics as two games, or as one instance of giving demo games out? Finally after many a sleepless night I opted for the latter option. Focus was on teaching the game around a bit, not on the actual games and their outcomes.

Well, there isn't much to say about the games, except that Circle got the alpha strike in both games, probably because they got to start both games.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Ivan's Stand

It's been two weeks since this game was played. I wish I could say I was busy the entire time, which is somewhat true, but was I so busy I couldn't get to write one game down? Probably not. But let's get to it.

I continued playing with Skorne, and this time we were playing 35 point game.

My list was:

Lord Tyrant Hexeris
- Archidon
- Rhinodon
- Basilisk Drake
- Basilisk Krea

Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + Unit Attachment
Minimum unit of Paingiver Beast Handlers
Venator Flayer Cannon
Aptimus Marketh
Agonizer
Bloodrunner Master Tormentor

I was playing against Khador, and I knew that was a pretty damn good possibility. And still I didn't take any real way to counter Arm 20 into my list. Oh well.

Khador was, however:

Oleg Strakhov
- Black Ivan

Great Bears of Gallowswood
Widowmakers
Maximum unit of Assault Kommandos + 1x Flamethrower
2x Kayazy Eliminators
Widowmaker Marksman
Epic Eiryss
Gorman diWulfe

Judging from the pictures, I believe Skorne got to start the game. Scenario was Incursion.

I had tried to place Archidon to control the left flag, but so that there would be no line of sight to Black Ivan, because if there was, it'd just come and make a mess out of Archidon.

Bloodrunner Master Tormentor did more than it had ever done before - a lucky hit killed one of the Kayazy Eliminators. A praetorian swordman charged to eliminators too, but missed both attacks even with Death March helping him out.

Next turn Strakhov used his feat. There was, in fact, LOS to Archidon so the beast was gone. We were not sure how to handle the situation where LOS is lost during charge movement, but apparently Ivan could've charged so that it could have tied up Basilisk Krea, which would've made my next turn more difficult. I doubt it'd made it entirely impossible, so I try not to be too annoyed by the fact that I gained some unfair advantage from wrong ruling.

Widowmakers and their marksman shot at praetorians. The marksman got the Officer to one hit box remaining and Eiryss snipered him soon after, and so praetorians lost Side Step, their minifeat and even Death March.

Assault Kommandos ran into the woods, thanks to their Pathfinder from Strakhov. Great Bears of Gallowswood made some charge shenanigans and got to position themselves like they did. Their damage rolls weren't quite good this time around, and much to my suprise they didn't destroy Rhinodon.

Then it was my turn, and I felt some anxiety from the fact that now Black Ivan was in close proximity to my army, and I had nothing else to crack it down except a crapton of low-powered attacks. That's not usually a very good thing.

However... Hexeris's feat kept me in game. Obliteration was succesfully cast on the big bunch of Assault Kommandos, and that's where the chain started. When the chain came to an end, Venator Flayer Cannon added fuel to the fire, as well as Rhinodon killing off all the bears. One of them made the tough roll, so he couldn't really move anywhere as a zombie. But yeah. All in all, it was a devastating feat.

Agonizer cried a little with the effect that makes warjacks lose their arc node and being unable to gain focus from allocation. I guess that was a way of taking Black Ivan out - I could do nothing to it, and it'd have only one attack against Skorne.

Anyway, next turn Strakhov went crazy. He charged Basilisk Drake, killed it and then sprinted to dominate left flag. Eiryss and Widowmakers kept a safe distance, and Eliminators went to control middle flag. In this process Skorne lost all of the Swordsmen.

On my next turn Agonizer kept on crying for no focus allocation, and the rest of my forces tried to kill the Eliminators. Aptimus Marketh managed to kill one of them, since he had swollen quite fat from the souls he had already stored. Hexeris himself had to charge to kill the remaining Eliminator.

Def 14 Arm 20 target wasn't an ideal target for MAT 4 & 5 warbeasts with highest P+S being 14. Basilisk Krea used her animus to lower Ivan's Def to 12, but still it was a bit on the high side for my hitting potential. As a result both of the beasts were only scraping Ivan's armor a little.

Next turn Ivan killed Rhinodon. Really, really bad. I think Strakhov killed one of the paingivers and then Sprinted away. Widowmakers and Eiryss killed Venator cannon and Aptimus Marketh.

On my turn Basilisk Krea used her animus to lower Ivan's Def and then Hexeris himself tried to destroy the warjack. If I remember right only the cannon broke down, though it didn't have too many boxes remaining any more. Ah well.

Then it was Khador's turn and Black Ivan tried to kill the crying little bugger, but its 8 damage boxes shielded it well enough.

Krea hadn't taken damage during game really. Strakhov charged it, and I believe the warbeast should have died, but defying all fate it was still standing after Strakhov's activation. I don't remember how the dice rolled, but since Sprint didn't trigger now, I had my only chance of assassination.

First Krea was healed by the last remaining Beast Handler, and then Hexeris advanced, attacked Black Ivan and pushed it 1" away and Hexeris advanced 1" closer to Strakhov. Hexeris unloaded all of his Fury on the warcaster, and Strakhov was no more.

So it was a really close-fought game. And I really, really need to start paying some attention to high armor values. Despite some 3 rounds of melee against Black Ivan, it had still not lost any important systems.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Dice just bouncing off from Rasheth (in many ways)

A few days ago I played a 50 point game of Warmachine.

After a while I took out my Skorne, and I decided to play Rasheth. I was suspecting that I would be against Legion and Saeryn, so needless to say, I was a bit horrified.

My list:

Dominar Rasheth
- Archidon
- Rhinodon
- Bronzeback Titan
- Basilisk Drake
- Basilisk Krea

Maximum unit of Cataphract Cetrati
Maximum unit of Beast Handlers
Minimum unit of Bog Trog Ambushers
Minimum unit of Bone Grinders
Agonizer

As I was bracing myself for the worst it turned out I would be against a far more horrible warlock. Once again it was the dreaded Rasheth vs Epic Lylyth match. Once I saw the list I was surely crying on the inside.

Legion list was:

Lylyth2
- 3x Ravagore
- Carnivean
- Naga Nightlurker

Blackfrost Shard
2x Shepherds
The Forsaken

Legion of Everblight also got to start the game, so Lylyth's feat would most probably come on turn 2, when I'd still be way too far away to close in to melee... This is what was to be expected. Everything else, however, went completely unexpected ways.

Luckily there was a hill on Skorne's side of the board. I had picked the side because I really didn't want Ravagores on a hill, but I quickly found out that a hill and Krea's animus makes even the big jolly guy Def 14. First picture is from the end of Skorne turn 1.

Lylyth's feat came, of course. Suprise here was that it killed nothing. Saeryn missed the critical roll of casting Pin Cushion against Bronzeback. But then every attack from Ravagores was targeted at Bronzeback Titan (who was Def 16, Arm 21 against most shooting). Only one of those attacks missed. All of the damage rolls were boosted. And yet Bronzeback Titan stood defiantly with six or seven damage boxes remaining. The damage rolls that were rolled were incredibly low. Best rolls were just on par with averages.

I can't say I was unhappy about the thing. With this match up I really needed such a dice screw happening for opponent, and had that been one of the few cases of critical dice screws, it could have been pretty much okay...

Well then it was my turn. It was quite annoying that even when opponent wasn't able to do much last turn, I couldn't either. Three Ravagores were even without Lylyth's feat still a very real threat to Rasheth. I just ended up bringing the heavy beasts forward, healing Bronzeback as much as possible and generally just hoping for the best. Scenario had Killbox artifice, so Legion wouldn't be able to fall back too much.

Then was Legion's third turn. And this was the turn where I started to feel bad for the opposing player, despite the difficulty of match-up.

Naga Nightlurker had been left with one Fury, and as it happened, it failed Threshold check, charged Carnivean and dealt an amazing damage roll that broke a branch. That might haven't been too bad, but Naga blocked charge lane for Carnivean now. Opponent could have charged Rhinodon and Archidon and just shoot the nearly dead Bronzeback with Ravagores. Now he had to do the other way - Charge Carnivean to Bronzeback and shoot the other heavy beasts as much as possible.

Carnivean was quite confident in killing Bronzeback, and boosted two attack rolls to kill one beast handler and bone grinder with its spray. But three initial attacks and a couple additional attacks later Bronzeback was still standing. I can say that a lot 1's and 2's were rolled during that activation.

Blackfrost Shard tried to freeze Archidon, and the last one of Shards shoot the Kiss of Lyliss or whatever that ability was against Def 10 Archidon with skill 7. And... it was a miss.

At least all the Ravagores hit Archidon, but by now you can guess it. Their damage rolls were absolutely disgraceful. One of the Ravagores had used its animus, so Archidon and Rhinodon were on fire now, and Archidon had six damage boxes left.

Naga Nightlurker shot somewhere, either Archidon or Rhinodon, and hit but didn't do any damage, even with a damage boost.

I know there have been games where absolutely nothing can be done, despite odds being in your favor. Usually failing a few critical rolls and underperfoming here and there can bring that feeling to you, but honestly... games where it's more than fair to blame the dice to this extent are rare.

Now, then it's Skorne turn 3.

Fire effect deals five damage to Archidon. So Archidon survives with just one damage point left. So the bad luck for opponent didn't stop last turn, no. It continued all the way to end.

I brought Bog Trog Ambushers to field and ran them as close to Lylyth as possible.

Bronzeback mauls Carnivean to the ground, Rhinodon (who had Carnivore) charges Blackfrost Shard and Naga Nightlurker and kills all but Naga.

Beast Handlers heal Archidon and Bronzeback, but only one damage is removed from Archidon, which was a bit of a bummer, but I guess I didn't have any rights to complain right now.

Then Rasheth activates and uses Plague Wind. He heals Archidon for one point, casts Carnivore on Archidon and casts boosted Blood Mark on Lylyth through one of the Bog Trogs. This was quite a risk, because it left Rasheth with no Fury. But I had quite good chances of taking out Lylyth, who had only one Fury for transfer.

Archidon then charges Lylyth, and deals enough damage to bring her down to 3 hit boxes. Second attack deals enough damage to kill her, so it's transfered away.

Next Basilisk Drake walks up and shoots spray at Archidon's back. Even with a boost it misses Lylyth, but hits Archidon without a boost. Damage was rolled. Dice showed 2 and 3. I had to count that many times, because I just couldn't believe Archidon was again brought down to 1 hit box remaining.

Cataphract Cetrati charged around in an attempt to engage as many Ravagores as possible. As a bonus they managed to kill Naga Nightlurker. I actually had this false sense of protection, when Lylyth was engaged. I didn't remember she had Evasion.

And with that starts Legion's turn 4. This is the turn where Legion would either win or lose the game. Now, wouldn't it be just righteous and fair, if all the bad luck was payed back in abundance on the turn where it mattered most? Not according to the Dice Gods.

Lylyth activates and casts Pin Cushion on Rasheth, which succeeds. Then she makes two attacks with all remaining Fury, and deals 7-8 points in. So those rolls were actually... average? And then there were two Ravagores that got to fire their attacks. First one dealt enough damage to bring Rasheth down to 5 hit boxes remaining. Blast damage kills a Beast Handler who was standing next to Rasheth, and because of Plague Wind this brings Rasheth to 6 boxes. Last Ravagore shoots and deals five damage to Rasheth. So even Rasheth is left standing with just one hit box, and that was thanks to collateral damage!

To add plenty of insult to injury, even one of the Cataphract Cetrati was left with just one hit box. During the game Archidon had been twice on one hit box, Bronzeback Titan once, one of the Cetrati and even Rasheth. I wonder what are the odds for all of this happening in one game.

And then... there was Lylyth with three hit boxes, no Fury and Blood Mark on her in middle of Skorne army. Opponent conceded, and I didn't have the heart to force him to watch final rolls, though a grand dice screw on my part could still save Legion. After all Archidon was with one box and on fire, and I had 12 Fury on board. Though now when I think of it, Lylyth had 3 boxes and Arm 12, Breath of Corruption had POW 12 and even with triple 1's she would've died.

It would be nice if I could say that I won Epic Lylyth with Dominar Rasheth by playing exceptionally well. If I'm completely honest, though, it was all only because of amazingly bad dice rolls opponent made, or when they were not 5-6 below averages, they were just one short of doing actual damage.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Deathspur Assassination

I have this ideology, or bias (depending on point of view), to try something new with almost every list I play. Something has to be different, even if the change is a very little one. Only during tournaments I play with exactly same lists, and sometimes if I get to play two games in a row I may play with the same list to save some time.

It's probably not very wise thing to do, as chances are I will never actually "master" any list I play. But that's the way I want to roll, so to say.

Well, this time I was going to play a 50 point game. I chose Kaya as my warlock, and this "new" thing in my list was, well... they were the Druids of Orboros with Overseer. As I was thinking what I wanted to include in my list, I realised that I had never used the staple of many Circle armies with Kaya - the Druids of Orboros.

So, my list turned out to be:

Kaya the Wildborne
- Warpwolf Stalker
- Gnarlhorn Satyr
- Scarsfell Griffon
- Argus
- Gorax

Tharn Bloodweavers
Shifting Stones + Stone Keeper
Druids of Orboros + Overseer
Lord of the Feast
Blackclad Wayfarer
Druid Wilder

I didn't exactly know what to expect, since I had not played this particular opponent for ages. I knew the possibilities were Protectorate of Menoth, Khador and Legion of Everblight.

What I faced was a thing out of my darkest nightmares - Saeryn.

So, enemy list:

Saeryn
- 2x Scythean
- Ravagore
- 2x Angelius
- Shredder

2x Shepherd
Forsaken
3x Spell Martyrs

The nightmarish thing here was that I had two heavy warbeasts and opponent had five. In a situation like this even Lord of the Feast loses a lot of his potential, and while Druids of Orboros are always nice, they're a bit less so when their cloud effects are completely ignored and there are no real targets for Devouring and even if you manage to pull one or even two heavy hitters to your army's charge range, enemy still has 3-4 heavy beasts, or maybe even more if one of them had Respawn. At least Elemental Protection was there to offer them some survivability, but there was this nasty problem of Blight Bringer being corrosion type damage. Damn, damn, damn.

Luckily I had brought my mainstay unit of Bloodweavers with me. They're very capable of taking out one heavy warbeast per round if they get to charge.

Anyway, this time I forgot my camera back at home. I tried to take some pictures with my phone, but most of them are just rubbish. I'm still uploading them here just to illustrate, but if my photoshooting skills haven't been entirely agreeable in the past, now they're even less so.

Scenario was randomised to be the trusty old "Incursion", and the usual flag disappeared, that is, the middle one.

Legion started the game, and first picture is from the end of Circle turn 2. What has happened so far: One of the Scytheans had advanced far enough for Druids to try to pull the thing within charge range. And... it succeeded. Blackclad Wayfarer cast Hunter's Mark on the Scythean, and Gnarlhorn Satyr charged in. For the first time in ages it did something good: it killed the dragonspawn without actually failing at everything.

The reason why Legion hadn't advanced more was probably the fact that I sacrificed Lord of the Feast right on turn 1. After all there were so few good targets for it that I thought trying to destroy some beast support was the best it could ever do. It killed the Forsaken and one Spell Martyr. And of course it slowed down the advance. Worth it? Maybe...

It's a shame I had positioned Argus so sloppishly, since it was less than an inch away after a full 14" run from the flag on the left. I had been too busy in arranging the destruction of Scythean to have a clear, straight path for Argus to run.

Anyway, I had to charge with Scarsfell Griffon to one of the Angelius' that was contesting rightmost flag. Had I not done that, opponent would have easily started scoring points during next turn. Shifting Stones and Stone Keeper with them had started to slowly move themselves to contest rightmost flag, it started to look like that the only thing I could do on that front was to contest the flag as long as I could with a couple of stones. Looking back now, I see that opponent did start scoring points no matter what. Oh well...

Gnarlhorn had been placed back to safety with Spirit Door, and the Scythean had been killed around the spot where is the cog template that represents a scather shot from Ravagore.

And then it just had to happen, the dreaded feat of Saeryn.

Luckily the only real casualties for me were Blackclad Wayfarer, four Druids of Orboros (along with their Overseer - so much for the beastmaster) and the Scarsfell Griffon. By "real" casualty here I mean models that were removed from the board. Kaya was set on fire via blast from Ravagore, the excessive damage roll was transfered to Gorax, and a charging Angelius nearly brought Warpwolf Stalker to its grave. And next turn there was absolutely nothing I could do to any of the enemy warbeasts.

Well, here is what I tried to do.

Since Saeryn's battlegroup couldn't be targeted with melee attacks, Argus, probably for about the first time ever, got to use its spray attack! It yodled at Ravagore, and scored a hit. Then remaining Druids of Orboros tried to push it away, and they pushed quite nicely indeed. Now there was no worry of Ravagore running in and getting Blight Bringer on it.

Then Kaya activated and cast Spirit Fang on Scythean, and scored a couple of damage points in. Which was enough, since -2 SPD meant no charge for the beast. Kaya also used her feat, and healed a couple of beasts and cast Spirit Door on herself, moving to dominate a flag. On the right side Shifting Stones teleported to contest flag there.

Gorax and Gnarlhorn Satyr just positioned themselves to form a wall of flesh in between Legion of Everblight and Kaya. Looking back, again, their positioning was quite stupid. After all, Scythean could now easily get Bloodbath going on. Well, it didn't, because it missed one of its initial attacks, but that doesn't really change the fact that my positioning was bad.

Warpwolf Stalker just remained there, because I didn't want Angelius to charge anywhere. I was thinking of moving it with Spirit Door, but even with Kaya's feat she just didn't have the Fury for it.

Next few pictures are disturbingly shaken.

But thanks to the missed attack roll, both Gnarlhorn Satyr and Gorax survived the onslaught of the Scythean. Both were just about to die, though.

Saeryn tried to cast a Hellfire at Kaya through a Spell Martyr, and Ravagore tried to shoot her. Since she was already on fire, it didn't use its animus. One of them hit and one of them missed, I don't remember which did what. The damage was, however, transfered to Argus.

Well, then. Druid Wilder casts Gorax's animus on Gnarlhorn, and then Gnarlhorn proceeds to beat the snot out of Scythean (after druids of orboros had healed the broken branches, though). The Curse of the Gnarlhorn strikes again. Despite having MAT 10 and P+S 17 and two P+S 16 attacks and 4 Fury to use, it had to force itself to full 4 Fury to kill the Scythean. I don't think a single damage roll (except maybe the last?) was above 6 on two dice.

Argus has a lot better dice, since it manages to kill Shredder without breaking a sweat even with its Body branch destroyed (Argus had something like 4 damage boxes remaining from all the transfers).

Next Kaya tries something desperate. She charges the Ravagore, just hoping for astonishing damage rolls that maybe wouldn't kill the beast, but hopefully knock it down and maybe break a branch or two. None of that happened, the grand total with two attacks with damage boosts was about 3 or 4 damage in.

Then she cast Spirit Door to go back and dominate the flag. And now Circle was at 4 control points and Legion was at 1 control point. If that Argus just had had enough movement to bring itself to the flag on turn 2... A bitter, salty tear is shed here as I write.

Bloodweavers make amazing job, too. They all charge at Angelius who had Respawn on. First Bloodweaver used Dispel on its attacks, and the rest attacked with MAT 8, P+S 11 +4d6. Thanks to amazing damage rolls the last two Bloodweavers didn't even need to attack.

Well then it's Legion of Everblight's turn, and something very embarrassing happens. Since there isn't too many options for enemy either (and Kaya had one Fury left for transfering), my opponent decided the best course of action is to attack Kaya (who has about 6 damage boxes remaining from being on fire for three turns and cutting her for two Fury last turn) with Saeryn's ranged attack option, the Deathspur.

So... Saeryn advances and starts throwing about those stars. Kaya is behind a wall, and sits effectively at Def 20. First attack misses, but second does not. And with a damage boost later, Kaya just dies to the first damage roll she suffers from Saeryn's awe-inspiring P+S of 8. Deathspur has Grievous Wounds special ability on them, so Kaya couldn't transfer the damage away. But still... Kaya died to P+S 8 boosted damage roll, and not to P+S 15 boosted damage roll from Ravagore that she wouldn't be able to transfer away.

That is nearly as embarrassing(/awesome?) as inflicting the final wound on Madrak Ironhide with Anatomical Precision from Cephalyx Mind Slaver that I managed to do back in Mk1 edition of Warmachine.

So, all in all, a really close and exciting game. Looking back at the last round of the game, just by casting Occultation on Kaya and moving her a little farther away would've saved her bacon from Deathspur at least, since Saeryn doesn't have Eyeless Sight. But things like that are quite difficult to see before you know what happens.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Artifice of Intention

A 35 point game of Warmachine, Cryx vs Khador.

My list:

Iron Lich Asphyxious
- Ripjaw
- Nightwretch
- Seether

Maximum unit of Satyxis Raiders + Sea Witch
Minimum unit of Bile Thralls
Gorman diWulfe
Skarlock
Necrotech & Scrap Thrall
Machine Wraith
Satyxis Raider Captain

Khador had:

Epic Irusk
- Juggernaut

Maximum unit of Man-o-War Bombardiers
Maximum unit of Man-o-War Shocktroopers
Minimum unit of Battle Mechaniks + Officer
2x Winter Guard Mortar Crew
Epic Eiryss


Khador got the start, and Tactical Supremacy was cast on Man-o-War Shocktroopers. On Cryx side Skarlock had cast Scything Touch on Satyxis Raiders, and Asphyxious took a flying start by just running with all focus. First picture is taken from the end of Cryx turn 1. Scenario was, by the way, the Process of Elimination.

Next turn Khador mainly advances, and Irusk uses his feat. That was actually rather good choice, since Satyxis could and would have charged everywhere on my next turn.

Mortar fire doesn't do much. Skarlock and Gorman both take a few damage points from blasts, and one bile thrall bites the dust.

Well then it was my rather restricted turn. Satyxis Captain gave Desperate Pace to Raiders, who then advanced and used Power Swell. I was hoping for a little more damage since five Satyxis got within melee range, but only one Man-O-War fell. Well, technically two, because he was knocked down from a succesful Tough roll.

Ripjaw tries to position itself as close to Eiryss as possible, but not within 5" of her. I have done that mistake too many times with my arcnodes.

A lucky Breath of Corruption deviation kills Eiryss soon after, and then Nightwretch tries to damage objective on the left. It succeeds by doing 2 damage.

Next the mechaniks of Khador repair 10 points of damage away from Shocktroopers, so Power Swell achieved even less. Impenetrable wall of armor advances in a straight line, and Artifice of Deviation then blocked any possibility to charge Juggernaut with Seether. Mortars were shooting at bile thralls. One shot missed its target, and deviation brought the blast over Gorman. That was the end of Gorman. I guess he's not my superman any more who survives all attacks, no matter the odds.

Now, this time I really wanted to wipe out the Shocktroopers. First Ripjaw activated and walked close to them. Asphyxious cast Parasite to them. Then a Bile Thrall walked up to use Purge. However, I couldn't position that damnable bile thrall so that only casualty would have been the lone Satyxis. I had to turn it so that rightmost objective and Ripjaw took the acid explosion too. Luckily it didn't break Ripjaw, but on the other hand, it really did nothing to Man-o-Wars either. Only a couple of damage points here and there.

Satyxis Raiders charge Shocktroopers then. Parasite and Chain Weapon reduced their armor effectively to 14, and thanks to Scything Touch the base P+S on Satyxis was 11. So yeah, this time they died, except one who passed two or three Tough rolls. Bile Thrall purge and one Lacerator attack that was directed against Mechanik Officer brought him down to 1 hit box. Oh, and one Satyxis Raider took an awkward charge at Man-o-War Bombardiers just to tie them up a little. This worked suprisingly well, since she one-shotted the Bombardier in question.

Since Seether couldn't do anything productive, I positioned it so that I might next turn start scoring points by destroying rightmost objective.

As it turned out, Khador had pretty much the same plan, except inversed. At the start of turn Mechanik Officer melts down.

Man-o-War Bombardiers with Battle Lust destroy the left objective, but luckily they don't wreck Nightwretch. Battle Mechaniks tie up Satyxis Raiders, and one arrogant wrench-toting jungle creature dared to actually hit Satyxis on the left and kill her. I guess she took a little too long to savor her personal victory, and never saw that wrench hitting the back of her head...

I don't remember any more what killed Satyxis Raider Sea Witch. I can only hope it wasn't those charging Mechaniks...!

Then Artifice of Deviation blocked Seether's charge, again... I really started to miss Ghost Walk or Veil of Mists during this match!

Then it was Cryx turn. I was starting to fear that I would actually lose attrition and scenario, so I decided to try assassination and, failing that, try to claim rightmost control zone.

Satyxis Raider Captain charged the Bombardier who was engaging Nightwretch, and she succeeded to dismember the guy in the suit well enough for Nightwretch to run within 10" of Irusk.

Then Seether charges to objective, but it rolls abysmal damage rolls. So I really want to succeed at the assassination, now. However, before that the co-joined efforts of all remaining Satyxis and Ripjaw manage to bring the last remaining Shocktrooper down.

Asphyxious activates. He has 6 focus remaining. I decide I will try the risky way, and shoot unboosted Hellfire at Irusk. Miss. Asphyxious repeats all of this. Even the "miss" part. Looking back, maybe I should have just tried two fully boosted Hellfires, but I was certain that at least even one out of all tries would hit and I could boost the damage roll. Not today, Iron Lich, not today. Asphyxious charges objective and does annoyingly little damage. Then Asphyxious uses his feat and I try one last unboosted Hellfire at Irusk. Miss.

Then I just buy two extra attacks against objective, and with last two remaining focus Asphyxious casts Teleport to move into better position. The extra attacks? Naah, they didn't do much. After a charge attack and three attacks from Seether and one charge attack and two attacks from Asphyxious, the objective was still standing defiantly.

I'm starting to get a little desperate, so even bile thralls try to shoot the thing with their sprays. I don't remember if they did anything.

And last, but not least, even Skarlock activates and casts Hellfire on the objective! This was literally the last possible attack against it, and failing this it would be a certain scenario defeat to me.

A heavy stone fell from my shoulders when the damage roll was actually above average, and the objective was destroyed.

So... the ARM20, 15 damage boxes objective took:
One point of corrosion damage.
P+S 16 +3d6, 2x P+S 16 + 2d6 and 3x P+S 12 +2d6.
P+S 15 + 3d6, 2x P+S 15 +2d6 and POW 14 +2d6.
... before it was destroyed. I really could have used those resources somewhere else, too...

Opponent doesn't have too much of a trouble clearing left control zone, so this Khadoran turn victory points would come to 3-3.

Mortars shoot all the Satyxis and Mechaniks away, as well as one of the bile thralls.

Juggernaut charges Ripjaw, but misses charge attack. But even the slap of an open fist wrecks Ripjaws movement system.

Bombardiers charge Nightwretch and one of them hits (and crits), but doesn't wreck the thing. If memory serves, the Arc-Node is gone, however.

Then Cryx turn starts.

And the most dreadful thing that can happen in a miniature game (apart from cat-accident) happened: A dispute.

This is how things started: Ripjaw advances so that Seether can attempt a charge against Juggernaut. Then it does Armor Piercing attack and scores some damage. Asphyxious charges Juggernaut (behind Ripjaw) and wastes all of his Focus into attacks and boosts, but doesn't manage to wreck the thing.

Skarlock runs to contest leftmost zone. Bile Thrall advances so that purge hits Nightwretch, Juggernaut and two Man-o-Wars (pretty much doing nothing against all of them).

Then when Seether activates and I declare a charge against Juggernaut, opponent informs that Juggernaut was supposed to be a little farther away attacking Ripjaw, but the model wouldn't have balanced on the downward sloping trench.

The opponent is an honest fellow and I didn't have (and still don't) have any reason to doubt that this was the actual intention. It hadn't, however, been told during Juggernauts activation, so to me the positioning looked like a conscious risk of getting in a charge from Seether, as I wasn't observing so meticulously what the maximum charge distance for Juggernaut would've been. The 5" AoE is Artifice of Deviation, so it was really so-and-so if charge for Seether would've been feasible or even within the boundaries of reality if Juggernaut would have stood a little further.

In a friendly game I'm not against take-backs even to this extent, but the problem here was that I would've probably planned my turn totally different if there had been no real chance of trying a charge with Seether. First of all, I could've ran to contest left zone with Seether instead, and cast Scything Touch on Asphyxious with Skarlock. Also I would've probably tried to cast Parasite on it too to make most out of the limited number of attacks I had at my disposal - now I had just to bring it down with the number of attacks, because I always had Grab & Smash coming from Seether.

In the end Seether got to make its charge (and continuing my trend of low damage rolls didn't do enough damage to wreck it) and threw the model away from control zone, and scenario points gave the victory to Cryx.

Endings like this, however, leave a little sour feeling. I know that this is the way things would have played, for example, in a tournament. But still it makes me feel that I got a victory because of a positioning mistake that actually wasn't even "real", just an illusion. Also, because of the things mentioned above, if I had lost because I accepted undeclared intention as a fact, I would've probably felt a little cheated out of victory, too.

In a way it was a lose-lose situation, probably for the both of us.

But still it was very exciting game up until this slightly sorry ending. But such things happen, nothing you can do about it, except to do everything perfectly always and in any given situation. And I doubt that's possible for anyone.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

A Demo Game

Wow, I managed to break my long tradition of two demo games per year. Now the record is three.

This time I knew I was going to give a demo game to a player who didn't have actual miniature game experience, so I tried to keep army lists quite simple.

The lists were:
Warwitch Deneghra
- Slayer
- Ripjaw
- Deathripper

Iron Lich Asphyxious
- Reaper
- Nightwretch
- Defiler

So that was a nice 10 points for each player.

I got the list with Deneghra.

Anyway, what was nice to see is that the core of this game hasn't changed. Of course the 100% knowledge of the game becomes more and more complex with every release to the point that complete mastery becomes pretty much impossible. But, really, the core mechanics are pretty nice and functional. And why wouldn't they be.

So, the game went on quite nicely and smoothly. It ended to the victory of Deneghra, who survived with only one hit box left! And even then the game ended because opponent lost all warjacks, so it wasn't even a caster kill. I think this must've been the best demo game I've given, because it played quite aggressively and things were happening all the time. And damage was done. Oh yeah, damage was done.

Well, we'll see if this city gets another player soon. I sure hope so.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

30 points vs 35 points

Some time ago I played a game of warmachine.

It was supposed to be a 35 point game, and I played with following list:

Epic Asphyxious
- Corruptor (Yes, you read right. I need to feel better for playing epic Asphyxious and not downright filthy.)
- Nightwretch
- Cankerworm
- Helldiver

Maximum unit of Bane Thralls + Unit Attachment
Bane Lord Tartarus
Warwitch Siren
Gorman diWulfe
Bloat Thrall

And opponent had:

Strakhov
- Black Ivan

Maximum unit of Assault Kommandos + 1 flame thrower
2x Kayazy Eliminators
Widowmakers
Widowmaker Marksman
Epic Eiryss
Gorman diWulfe

When I'm playing Cryx I've really started to see Assault Kommandos in a different light. Again here that often dismissed infantry unit was immune to Warwitch Siren, Bloat Thrall and even Caustic Mists. And, well, even to that particular ammo of Corruptor, but I don't think that really counts for anything.

Anyway. After the game we noticed that this Khador list was, in fact, 5 points short. In the original list there were Great Bears of Gallowswood that didn't make it to the board.

Game started with Cryx taking the first turn. Scenario was Into the Breach, and large blast template marks the middle point of control zone. First picture is taken from the end of Khador's first turn. I'm including that picture, since upcoming pictures have completely atroctious camera angles.

Anyway, second picture shows how I (having learned some lesson from my fooling around in Ropecon 2013) marched Bane Thralls this time in front of whole flank to the right. And the second half of that second picture... wow. Opponent did pretty good job of wrecking whole damn unit of Bane Thralls. Only Officer and two thralls survived out of full 12. One thing caught me completely off guard.

Black Ivan had bulldoze. That combined with Overrun and Strakhov's feat is rather devastating gimmick indeed. Chances would be that I would still have at least 2-3 thralls more if Bulldoze hadn't pushed the flag bearer of Bane Thralls out of the 1" pick-up radius of other grunts. I think I got to make only 2-3 tough rolls whole game before I lost the flag to this fancy trick. Maybe my next lesson to learn is to always keep flag so far away from any and all even unseen threats?

Widowmakers advanced and shot a couple of bane thralls and Kayazy Eliminators walzed through 4 thralls.

However, I was actually quite content with this huge loss. I was ready to use Spectral Legion any time now, and opponent would lose almost all serious attack power on my turn... or would he?

First Warwitch Siren advanced and seduced Kayazy Eliminator (again?) and all four of them were in a nice clump next, and one Bane Thrall was free to charge.

I doubted I had enough killing power for Black Ivan, so I decided to probably sacrifice Bane Lord Tartarus. He cursed Black Ivan and advanced, aligned himself properly and unleashed Thresher. Two thralls were created to the back arc of Black Ivan. Funnily enough Tartarus himself missed the attack roll against the cursed Ivan.

Bane Thralls charge Black Ivan next and with plenty of unsuccesfull rolls (and one really succesful!) the warjack is still pretty much standing with nothing important destroyed. Crap, crap, crap! It's then Asphyxious' time to activate, and he charges Black Ivan - that monstrosity just needs to die. Two attacks and it's finally gone, and Asphyxious teleports away, camping one focus.

Then Bloat Thrall shot the huge AoE all over Eliminators and... well, none of them died. Not even those two that were having -2 ARM from Dark Shroud. However one of my own Bane Thralls died, which ironically needed exactly same damage roll as to kill one Eliminator outright. Drats.

Things actually started to look a little worrisome right now. I can only imagine my distress had the Great Bears been on board! But of course, different decisions would've been made then and game would probably have played differently. At least that's what I try to keep telling myself.

On opponents turn Def 15 saves Warwitch Siren from assassination attempt by a Kayazy Eliminator. I think it was a charge attack so that the other Eliminator had to run, so Siren had to dodge only one combo-strike or two ordinary strikes.

Bane Lord Tartarus and all Bane Thralls are destroyed by various attacks, but Bane Thrall Officer defied all fate behind a wreck marker and was left standing with one hit box (and under Fire continous effect). Khador scored two Control Points this turn by dominating control zone.

Bane Thrall officer died to the Fire, by the way.

Well, then is my turn, and I try to use a little bit of Cryxian crowd control techniques. Nearly all Assault Kommandos had cramped up in attempt to kill Bane Lord Tartarus (damn I wish he would've lived... or... continued being undead, how that one needs to be expressed?), and even Gorman diWulfe was in that huge blob of warm, tender flesh. So.

My grand plan was that I would somehow would get rid of both Kayazy Eliminators in middle of my lines, then run Bloat Thrall next to the gathering of souls, advance Nightwretch so that I could launch Death Knell on Bloat Thrall and boost damage to the thrall. That way AoE 4 Death Knell would kill what it may and it would be followed with even larger AoE pow 14 death blast.

But I just couldn't figure any way to remove those Eliminators, as even the Corruptor was blind with Black Oil.

So I had to use the Bloat Thrall to clear the way for Nightwretch. This time it managed to kill two already corroded Eliminators, yay.

Next Cankerworm advanced to act as a loving homing beacon for Death Knell. Nightwretch advances into position. Asphyxious activates, puts down his soul gathering template and casts death knell through nightwretch to Cankerworm. Attack misses but deviates just so that that damned Gorman is out of the template. And what's even more annoying is that two damage rolls fail to kill, despite blast damage coming in with... what... pow 11 or 12? Assault Kommandos were in Shield Wall. That order was indeed a good call this time. Asphyxious got 4 souls from this affair.

Well, then. I lose everything but Nightwretch and Asphyxious. Technically I didn't lose Cankerworm or Corruptor, but they were both Blind from Black Oil.

So. I'm actually losing this game unless I do something drastic.

Time to call in Spectral Legion.

Nightwretch advances out of a good charge lane (and actually survives a free strike from one of the Eliminators) and then Asphyxious charges an Assault Kommando. He kills three of them and burns, well, pretty much ALL of his remaining focus to kill one pesky Kayazy Eliminator, saving only enough for a teleport. Obviously attempt to kill the Eliminator just fails.

Then he uses his Feat and table is filled with Bane Thralls once again. It's a pity I didn't take a picture before removing the models.

Anyway. Only four thralls make it to Strakhov. Suprisingly, however, first thrall hits! And rolls a godlike damage roll, leaving Strakhov with only two hit boxes remaining. Well, I still got 3 tries to roll a 9+ for a guaranteed kill. Second one is a miss. Third one is a miss. Fourth one hits! P+S 11 with 4 dice vs Strakhovs armor of something 17 or so. There are no markers next to him, but he was camping some focus. After all... where would have he actually used them?

Damage roll doesn't exceed his armor. To add an insult to injury, damage roll is exactly equal to his armor. It was something like 1,1,2,2 or 1,2,2,2.

Now wasn't that sweet?

Luckily rest thralls manage to kill some important pieces such as Gorman diWulfe.

Opponent then wrecks Cankerworm, who had been standing valiantly until this late game in the middle of enemy forces. Requiescat in pacem, until Asphyxious reconstructs it.

Strakhov heals a couple of damage points and goes to hug wreck marker. Enemy doesn't actually have too much models on board any more, but neither do I have too many attacks available. I do a little math, and I figure that I will actually lose to scenario unless I manage to assassinate Strakhov somehow.

So.

I am thinking of trying to spell-assassinate Strakhov next, but I didn't think I brought Nightwretch close enough to get through Stealth (Strakhov had been upkeeping Occultation on himself for whole game - wise move, actually, since I would've probably tried to assassinate and/or Parasite him at various points of the game - especially on the feat turn) and Strakhov in cover is outside of Asphyxious' league, I dare say.

Last remaining Assault Kommando had ran to engage Nightwretch.

On my upcoming turn it seemed like my only chances were to kill everything on the control zone and start dominating for points. However... if even one of enemy models remained that would just hand over the loss to me. So many dice rolls had already barely failed in this game that I thought that it'd be so much against all odds if this last chance would be ruined also.

Asphyxious allocates a focus point to Corruptor and Nightwretch. Corruptor advances and strikes the Assault Kommando down (while free-striking Eliminator doesn't strike Corruptor down) and then Nightwretch runs to Strakhov.

Asphyxious activates and advances so that he can attempt one last fully boosted Excarnate on Strakhov. Hits, and damage roll is excessive.

Phew.

Only logical reason for Eliminators, Gorman, Strakhov and to some extent even Black Ivan (it took almost every possible attack to nail the warjack down so the resources couldn't be directed to any other target) surviving for so long is that the spirit of the missing Great Bears of Gallowswood was magically supporting their performance. Wait... that's not logical at all... Another possible explanation is that some form of greater dice gods and kharma and whatnot punished me for using Corruptor.

Anyway, I hope we get to play another game some time with same lists, this time bears included. Game was a really good one and exciting, but still opponent was playing 5 points down, and it bugs me.