Saturday, March 30, 2013

Eventually part 1/3 of Turku Fanatic

Okay, it's been almost two weeks since Turku Fanatic tournament was held.

So it's really time for me to write down a small report of sorts.

I somehow ended up writing down these things in reverse order, so first two games are now being written last.

Tournament was 50 points with 1-2 lists and Divide & Conquer [2] and 10 point specialists.

I had never taken my Skorne to any tournament before, and I wanted to try how well they could do without Titan Gladiator or Molik Karn.

My lists were:

List 1:

Epic Hexeris
- 2x Basilisk Drake
- Basilisk Krea
- Cyclops Shaman
- Archidon
- Rhinodon

Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + UA
Maximum unit of Paingiver Beasthandlers
Minimum unit of Cataphract Cetrati
Aptimus Marketh

Bronzeback Titan. (I somehow found it hilarious that there was a one huge 10 point beast as a "specialist".

List 2:

Dominar Rasheth
Basilisk Drake
Basilisk Krea
Cyclops Shaman
Bronzeback Titan

Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + UA
Maximum unit of Paingiver Beasthandlers
Venator Flayer Cannon
Extoller Soulward
Orin Midwinter
Totem Hunter

Basilisk Drake
Bloodrunner Master Tormentor
Swamp Gobbers Bellows Crew
Ancestral Guardian

First game was against Circle of Orboros with Mohsar being the warlock.

Both lists opponent had included the Woldwrath and were construct & druid heavy overall. It was a tough choice between my lists, because Hexeris did fire damage with such low POW that it doesn't really interest any of the construct beasts, and Rasheth would be only able to aim for assassination with his feat and no other function whatsoever.

Opposing list was something like this:

- Woldwrath
- Woldwarden
- Woldwyrd

Druids of Orboros + Overseer
Maximum unit of Tharn Bloodtrackers + Nuala
2x Gallows Grove

Judging from the picture I think I got to start the game, and opponent is making his first turn. Ashen Veil was cast on Praetorian Swordsmen.

Well, there isn't much else to tell about first turn.

I advanced slowly, and scored first blood by killing a Druid of Orboros with Basilisk Drake. Whooppiedoo. And during this turn I start to look at my army a little more closely. Something had been bugging me about it, I mean... I had two heavy beasts and two light beasts... I had switched a few light beasts and feralgeist for Bronzeback Titan... but something was amiss.

Then I noticed it. I had not deployed Rhinodon. That was quite a face-palm moment, luckily opponent took it rather well and allowed me to place the beast somewhere in my deployment zone with no strategic elements to its placing whatsoever.

I guess I was a bit rusty with Skorne.

One heavy beast more was exactly what I needed, though, because on opponents next turn Mohsar used his feat Disjunction, and he used Woldwraths animus on himself. Then Druids of Orboros pulled Bronzeback closer to Woldwrath, and shortly after the gargantuan went and made my precious beast go splat.

Thanks to Disjunction Archidon went nuts and ate a beast handler that was standing on a hill, if you wonder that beasts placement.

Thanks to my Hexeris's feat I had a way of regaining Fury, but it was rather lame to use my feat that way.

Praetorian Swordsmen decided it was time for a suicide-run, and they charged whatever they could. Mostly Woldwrath, and then side-stepping for softer targets. This did remove a nice number of Druids from the field, but it was nothing but a piece trade.

Even Cataphract Cetrati charged, but did pretty much nothing thanks to missed hits and low damage rolls. I theoretically could have nailed Woldwyrd, but alas, it was not to be.

Upcoming turn from opponent was suprisingly merciful - I lost only 90% of Praetorian Swordsmen (only one was left standing) and 50% of Cetrati and a crapton of damage everywhere.

Mohsar advanced to dominate a flag to score control points.

That was my moment to try and win the game, because it looked like Rhinodon was within charge + reach distance. The old man did have 2-3 Fury for transfers, but better moment than this would probably not come.

So, Rhinodon became Enraged and Amuck was cast upon it by Hexeris. And then the beast charges and uses Thresher special attack.

I remember scoring one good damage roll that dealt something like 15 damage points in, but they were transfered right to the Woldwrath. Then there were a couple of crappy damage rolls that Mohsar took straight to the stomach muscles. I guess it's just too much for a giant tortoise-like enraged beast to kill a blind old man.

Luckily I still had Basilisk Drake who came to help Rhinodon with that awesome spray of his.

Either I missed or damage was transfered.

So, after trying everything I could I finally had to pass turn.

If I remember correctly, opponent actually won with scenario by killing off my objective marker and controlling & dominating different zones or something.

Anyway, it was quite nice game. And then on to the next one...

Game 2:

Then I was to be shocked once more.

I don't actually remember what opponents "other list" was, but I remember thinking that neither of them was "ok" for Rasheth, and if I ended up with epic Vyros, Rasheth would be all but doomed... I'm grateful I didn't pick him, since this was what I was looking at from across the table:

Epic Vyros
- 5x Griffon
- 2x Aspis
- Banshee

Maximum unit of Invictors + Unit Attachment + Soulless Escort
Sylys Wyshnalyrr
2x Arcanist

Not that the POW 10 damage roll from Ashes to Ashes would interest anyone on that list either, but still I felt a little bit more confident with epic Hexeris.

Scenario was Destruction, and I think opponent won starting roll and went first. Picture is probably from the end of opponents second turn.

I was quite sure that if I did nothing "big", all hell would break loose next turn. So, I charged. And maybe even used Hexeris' feat.

My grand plan in all its futility was to run Agonizer so that every warjack would be under the effect of "no focus allocation" agony and that way mitigate the upcoming crazy damage output.

It actually worked pretty nicely, but what worked even more nicely was absurd magic attack rolls I was able to pull off. Hexeris shot two fully boosted Hellfires to Vyros, and despite him being in melee (stupid me) they hit home and dealt respectable damage in. Not life-threatening, but certainly put up Vyros on his toes. Or his horse on its hooves.

Even without focus upkeeping of Synergy made more than enough damage.

Most Swordsmen were cut down, Rhinodon dead, agonizer released of its agony and plenty of Cetrati damaged. And all of this even when opponent constantly rolled very crappy damage rolls.

Vyros had also put up his feat. Funny thing here was that on my next turn it didn't trigger even once. Though that did mean that I destroyed not even one model in Vyros' control area...

Here is how it went.

Bronzeback Titan hammered one Griffon that was in melee, and threw it with chain attack to another griffon. I wanted to make Vyros burn focus somehow.

One Aspis in melee with Archidon was miraculously destroyed by godlike damage rolls from Archidon and a spray from Basilisk Drake. But that particular Aspis was outside of Vyros' control range.

Crazy damage rolls didn't stop there - I actually managed to destroy one objective marker with Praetorian Swordsmen. Though to be honest, that one had been softened up by Thresher attack from Rhinodon during last turn.

Aptimus Marketh shot a fully boosted Hellfire at Vyros, and the attack hit again. I was really expending all my available "above average attack roll" pool for whole tournament, it seemed.

Next turn opponent made a critical mistake with one of the griffons that Bronzeback had knockced down. Knockdown wasn't shaked off, and I think that was what "gave me" this game. Why?

That Griffon had been given a bit focus and had it been able to come into melee with Bronzeback Titan, there would've been a very real possibility of the Titan to die. After Synergy chain those attacks would've gone in with something like P+S 20-22.

But, instead, end result looked like this:

A couple of Griffons needed to be destroyed a bit first, or, the one in front of Basilisk Krea (black & white) and rightmost that was engaging Cetrati. Hexeris himself had to come and beat the warjack in front of Krea, but otherwise it went just fine. Hexeris even had the Fury to spare to cast Train Wreck on Bronzeback.

Bronzeback then charged one of the Griffons guarding Vyros, and three beat-backs later it was standing next to the warcaster.

It did take Bronzeback to max Fury, but finally Vyros fell down, as well as all the warjacks around him that had been such a pain in the rear.

Story of my Turku Fanatic warmachine tournament continues with part 2/3 here.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Finally part 2/3 of Turku Fanatic

Last game on first day of Turku Fanatic was against Legion of Everblight.

It was a little bit of a facepalm time, since I had already played twice with epic Hexeris, so if I took him the third time, I'd be playing with Rasheth for whole next day.

Sweating pure terror, I chose Rasheth. After all, scenario did not have Killbox artifice, and just maybe... just maybe opponent wouldn't pick epic Lylyth?

Well, he did.

List was something like:
Epic Lylyth
- 3x Ravagore
- Naga Nightlurker

Maximum unit of Raptors
Anyssa Ryvaal
And either 1x Shepherd & 1x Spell Martyr or 2x Shepherd.

Everblight got to start first, which was also a bad omen, since that probably meant that Lylyth would use her feat on second turn. Which she did. A short story short: Battlegroup shot Bronzeback to pieces and scored random damage to Archidon, too. It was really bad news for me, because opponent had three heavies still standing, and I had lost my sledgehammer from my toolbox, and was left with only screwdrivers and chisels. Oh, and she had moved to dominate my zone. She would not score just yet, but if I couldn't move anything to contest during my turn, she would gain two points in a row. And I couldn't.

Next turn I killed a Praetorian Swordsman to Black Rituals and killed a Raptor with Breath of Corruption. Basilisk Drake tickled one, too, but didn't kill it. A POW 14 boosted attack didn't kill an arm 15, 5 damage box model. That was a crazy turn.

Opponent then launches Naga Nightlurker upon Basilisk Krea, but fails to kill. Ravagores destroy my objective marker, so that's three points raking in for this game to Everblight already. These losses I, however, could still take.

On my next turn I had to remove Naga first. This was accomplished by efforts from Basilisk Krea and Ancestral Guardian. Then everything else tried to kill off those Raptors, but it didn't really succeed. Cyclops Shaman just missed, and I tried to aim Basilisk Drake on closest Ravagore so that spray template would clip Raptor. Nope, didn't clip.

Black Rituals was used again, and I had a nice target where I hoped I would catch a Ravagore, Lylyth and Raptor underneath Breath of Corruption. This time boosted POW 12 doesn't kill a Raptor, and Lylyth was way out there.

Archidon runs to contest my zone so Lylyth couldn't dominate it on my turn.

And then, the last picture.

I had to actually stare at it for a long time until I realised what had happened.

So that picture is terribly misleading, epic Lylyth did not stand there during game, this picture has been taken post-game and for reason or another, Lylyth has been placed elsewhere.

She stood rather close to Basilisk Drake (the red-blue basilisk that is), actually. First her army killed the few models that were contesting Everblight's zone and then Lylyth ran to dominate that zone. Five points total for Everblight. End of game.

But, to be honest, I'm suprised I lost to scenario and not to caster kill for this match-up, heh.


So it was 2 losses and 1 victory after first day. A little depressing, but nothing too bad, really.

I take a moment to just sit and relax and ponder about the games I played. Then I get this idea - I could arrange my models neatly and organized to tray for tomorrow's games.

One by one I put my army very carefully, even lovingly, to the tray. Skorne must be my most beautifully (technically speaking( painted army, probably because it's my newest.

So, after a long day of wargaming I finished setting up my army for tomorrows challenges. I sit back on chair and release a sigh of accomplCRRRAAAASHH!

There was so much metal on the plate that it turned over the foam boards and 50% of my Skorne was on my lap and the other 50% on floor.

A rough estimate was that 25% of my Skorne suffered broken and bend parts, and if we count chipped paint, I'm afraid the percentage was even more fatal.

That was... Demoralizing.


First game of Sunday

Next day I had recovered from my tragic resin/plastic/white metal heartbreak I had yesternight.

I was against Circle Orboros again, this time versus Baldur. Still construct heavy, though, and tier 4 list.

List was:

- Megalith
- Woldwarden
- Woldguardian

Shifting Stones + Stone Keeper
Shifting Stones
2x Woldstalkers & Stoneward
Druids of Orboros + Overseer
Blackclad Wayfarer

I must admit I was shocked how fast Tier 4 Baldur was on midboard and beyond!

Anyway, I had picked epic Hexeris for my list, because Rasheth wouldn't really do anything for either of opponents lists. Last game would then be with Rasheth, come what may...

So, picture is taken from the end of my first turn, and Circle got the start. Ewww.

Circle shoots down Basilisk Drake with woldstalkers, and they do it ridiculously easy. Ashen Veil helps to keeping at least Swordsmen relatively safe. Baldur used his feat, too.

On my next turn I try some shenanigans with charging Lightning Strike'd Archidon to couple of mannikins and then retreating to better position to cast spells from. Archidon was Hexeris' bonded beast.

I also tried to protect Hexeris with rather an interesting way. I went to dominate my Effigy of Valor and moved it to front of opposing woldstructs. Little I did know it then, but it was a nonfactor, but idea behind it was that it would drain at least some resources from enemy to get it from the way of Megalith.

I don't remember what I did with Hexeris' fury, but at least he used his feat to empty some Wolds. Then at least one, maybe two Ashes to Ashes' took a heavy toll on Woldstalkers, but that was about it.

And then there was some insanity, with the end result shown in last picture.

A set (let's call it set A) of shifting stones teleported one shifting stone from stone set B so that megalith was inside the triangle of shifting stone set B. Woldguardian slammed a woldstalker (that had run just for this out of formation) into Hexeris (and here was a funny 5,5,6 damage roll from the collision...)

Then Shifting Stones teleport Megalith to knocked down Hexeris.

That was a short game.

Then there was one more game, that is written down here.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

A small demo update

Well, just updating because I have to.

While I was staying with people in Salo, we played a small 10 point demo game of Warmachine, since I had my miniatures with me, because I had been in Turku Fanatic tournament.

It was a funny little game with Dominar Rasheth and Old Witch of Khador duking it out.

... and on Wednesday gods totally flipped out! (Smallworld)

Next day we played two more Smallworlds with Tales & Legends expansion.

Game 1:

This time we played blindly drawn cards from deck with only cards that supposedly had completely game-changing(breaking?) impact. Lordly Legends or whatever they were called.

Cards that were drawn in turn order were:

2. Great Ride
3. Blue Genes
4. Golden Age
5. Wheel of Misfortune
6. Kobold God
7. Necromantic Elixir
8. Oldies but Goodies
9. Ungodly Bribe
10. Handle with Care

Starting combos were Hill Barbarians, Mounted Orcs and Catapult Amazons. Bloodshed was unavoidable with such militant races. And it really didn't take long until Mounted Orcs and Catapult Amazons went In Decline. Hill Barbarians played a little longer and they claimed Blue Genes. Hordes of Skeletons would be the next race, which was somewhat horrific thought.

Anyway, Mounted Orcs came out as Pillaging Giants, such brutishness. At least Catapult Amazons were followed by a lot more sophisticated race combo... the Berserk Wizards.

And soon after, Wheel of Misfortune came up from the event deck.

Pillaging Giants went to the Berserk Wizards player, Berserk Wizards to Hordes of Skeletons and skellies marched now on the side of former Pillaging Giants.

Pillaging Giants turned into Barricade Sorcerers and started to tease Skeletons. Berserk Wizards overextended themselves and went In Decline, becoming Stout Trolls. And started teasing Skeletons. So while they still held some land, they went In Decline too and emerged as Seafaring Homunculi.

All remaining skeletons were eradicated way too fast, so game now nearing end, they too went In Decline, last few rounds playing as Imperial Gypsies.

Two players made one final sweep by going In Decline during turn 9 and wreaking havoc on turn 10 with all new races, which were Ransacking Ratmen for Troll player, and Wealthy Halflings for Sorcerer player.

Final scoreboard for this match:

Mounted Orcs/Pillaging Giants -> Hordes of Skeletons/Seafaring Homunculi/Imperial Gypsies: 109
Catapult Amazons/Berserk Wizards -> Pillaging Giants/Barricade Sorcerers/Wealthy Halflings: 98
Hill Barbarians/Hordes of Skeletons -> Berserk Wizards/Stout Trolls/Ransacking Ratmen: 92

Game 2:

In this game we took away the already used Lordly Legends cards and took missing cards from the "medium" impact deck.

Cards were:

2. Tabula Rasa
3. Tea Time
4. Philter of Forgetfulness
5. Puff of Smoke
6. White Queen
7. Decline and Fall
8. -whoops, forgot-
9. -forgot this one too-
10. Chicken Lake

A short summary here, as my notes are rather sub-par here. I guess I started to get a little bit tired of writing everything down.

Starting race combos were Forest Elves, Wealthy Wizards and Marauding Ratmen.

Marauding Ratmen were able to get maximum number of regions in just two turns, and were replaced by Diplomatic Giants. Not nice.

And I see a horrible thing here in my notes. I haven't written down which race combo Wealthy Wizards picked next. However, Elves went In Decline and picked Swamp Skeletons to bog around. That pun calls for an euthanasia.

Puff of Smoke took away plenty of ratmen.

On 5th turn some mystic race that came after Wizards went in Decline and were followed by Corrupt Halflings. That joy didn't last for long, when Decline and Fall forced everyone In Decline. Swamp Skeletons picked Imperial Barbarians, halflings took Dragon Master Trolls and giants took Flying Leprechauns.

Imperial Barbarians were a horrible race combo. They worked together perfectly.

Both Barbarian player and Leprechaun player decided to get a final push in last round, Barbarians switching to Hordes of Dwarves, gaining pretty much nothing. Leprechauns picked Commando Goblins that pretty much conquered every area with 1 race token, because there were so many decline tokens on map!

Final scoreboard was:

Forest Elves/Swamp Skeletons/Imperial Barbarians/Hordes of Dwarves: 98
Wealthy Wizards/???/Corrupt Halflings/Dragon Master Trolls: 84
Marauding Ratmen/Diplomatic Giants/Flying Leprechauns/Commando Goblins: 83

And that was it, phew.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Gods Have Gone Insane (Smallworld)

A grand total of four games of Smallworld were played in Salo.

Here are two of them. We used Tales and Legends card deck in every game with higher (= more random) stakes in every consecutive game.

Game 1 (Tuesday):

First, we just shuffled whole deck and had upcoming event revealed.

Cards for every round were:
2. Wizened and Old
3. Barbarian Invasions
4. Wheel of Misfortune
5.  Baby Boom
6. Forbidden Forest
7. Tremors
8. Going Down
9. Handle With Care
10. Philter of Forgetfulness

Races and combos that started game were: Mercenary Giants, Flying Gypsies and Bivouacking Tritons.

All races were pretty good starting races, especially Flying Gypsies got to make nice use out of their special ability.

Mercenary Giants were the first to go in decline, mostly because of upcoming Barbarian Invasions.

And truth be told, Merchant Barbarians that followed were atrocious combo. (Heh... barbarians emerged in barbarian invasions? How fitting...)

Bivouacking Tritons went In Decline next, and then came the ultimate mess-up even: Wheel of Misfortune. Merchant Barbarians continued to conquer in the name of Triton player, Gypsy player got to pick a new race, and barbarian player got Flying Gypsies.

Gypsy player took Fortifired Pygmies.

Next Merchant Barbarians decided to go In Decline, and no Gypsies had died, so only player who got anything out of Baby Boom was Pygmies.

Barbarians switched to Ransacking Orcs, but we played Ransacking wrong. The symbol made us think it was Pillaging, which would essentially mean it was double Orc bonus. I guess proper term is to talk about Pillaging Orcs in this case, then. However, one of the largest points score happened I have seen for a while, a horrible amount of 20 victory points for Merchants/Orcs.

Slowly Mercenary Giants were eradicated from the face of current world, so Flying Gypsies lost their wings and finally settled down. Catapult Wizards invaded in their place.

Pygmies found their time had come, too, and their crumbling society gave way for Diplomatic Sorcerers.

And the original Triton player made one final fell swoop in last round with Hill Amazons.

Final scoreboard:

Bivouacking Tritons -> Merchant Barbarians/Pillaging Orcs/Hill Amazons: 108 victory points.
Flying Gypsies/Fortified Pygmies/Diplomatic Sorcerers: 99 points.
Mercenary Giants/Merchant Barbarians -> Flying Gypsies/Catapult Wizards: 99 points.

Game 2 (Tuesday):

For this game we were drawing cards blindly from Tales & Legends deck so that the upcoming even was unknown.

Starting race combos were: Forest Ghouls, Heroic Orcs and Peace-Loving Kobolds.

Cards that shaped the world were:

2. Lost Treasures
3. My Land
4. Decline and Fall
5. Plague
6. Art of Combos
7. Gift from the Sky
8. Small Time Coup
9. Oldies but Goodies
10. Wealth Redistribution

Decline and Fall made all active races go in decline, but Forest Ghouls had already gone In Decline the round before. That was somewhat nice, because Historian Ratmen were able to score 3 points just because of that.

However, Historian Ratmen were not so happy when Berserk Trolls and Fortified Pixies started wreaking havoc all over. Especially Trolls were on a horrible berserk spree, giving bonuses on almost every region they attacked.

Pixies did what pixies do - vanished quickly from the face of the continent. However, next combo they picked was a nasty one. Alchemist Skeletons - that extra two points per turn really combines well with Skeletons' survival power!

Historian Ratmen finally died too, and Barricade Pygmies tried to carve an empire instead.

After Trolls had been raging long enough, there was very short-lived empire of Wealthy Gypsies, who in just few rounds were replaced by the very same race & special power combo that proved so superior in last game - the Merchant Barbarians.

Final scoreboard was:

Peace-Loving Kobolds/Fortified Pixies/Alchemist Skeletons: 106
Heroic Orcs/Berserk Trolls/Wealthy Gypsies/Merchant Barbarians: 103
Forest Ghouls/Historian Ratmen/Barricade Pygmies: 95

Only 11 point differece between highest and lowest points. Pretty even game then, especially when events were completely random and impossible to try to plan ahead.

Turku Fanatic 2013 WM/H tournament part 3/3

I'm slowly getting back to home from my trip to Turku Fanatic 2013 miniatures event and visiting friends close by.

I'm currently traveling in train, so I won't post anything that requires uploading pictures. This is the reason why I decided to write up part 3/3 of my tournament experiences first. Last game I played was so short I didn't even have time to take any pictures.

Since I didn't have any choice for my list during last round (I had to go with Rasheth) I was mostly screwed by the scenario, too. I don't actually remember what the scenario actually was, but it had Killbox artifice.

And opponent had list with Adeptis Rahn, battle mages, Hyperion and stuff like that.

Best part of the game was how damn cool the opponents color scheme was - main color was striking yellow. It was beautiful.

But having to move my Def 10 Arm 14 warlock some 12"-13" outside of a table edge when opponent has a feat to boost all spell damage rolls and gain a little advantage to range too... Nope. Not cool. To keep Rasheth absolutely safe I would have had to put Castigate on and give opponent free control points by sitting outside of the 'box.

Game over, dude, Game over.

Friday, March 15, 2013

You Can Accomplish Anything (if the dice never fail!)

Well, this is written in a bit of hurry. Dwarf Fortress has been distracting me too much lately, and soon enough I need to start packing for a trip to Turku Fanatic 2013 tournament.

But some time ago I played a Cryx versus Protectorate game. It was 35 points and randomed scenario from Masters scenario set.

My list:

- Harrower
- Nightmare
- Ripjaw
- Stalker

Minimum unit of Satyxis Raiders + Sea Witch
Minimum unit of Mechanithralls

And opponent played:

Grand Scrutator Severius
- Crusader
- Revenger

Minimum unit of Choir of Menoth
Maximum unit of Temple Flameguard + Unit Attachment
Exemplar Errants + Unit Attachment
Exemplar Errant Seneschal
Knight Exemplar Seneschal
Vassal of Menoth

So... what can I say? 19 my models versus 35 enemy models. Nearly outnumbered 2:1. I think using two 10 point jacks and 9 points worth of bonejacks was a bit overdoing it at 35 points. Would've probably been better to use Mortenebra's tier instead, or drop Stalker and have full unit of Mechanithralls + Surgeon instead.

Scenario was Process of Elimination, and I get to go first. Picture is taken from the end of opponents first turn.

I had sent mechanithralls to deathjack objective marker, along with a couple of Satyxis Raiders.

I was really unsure how to start handling this situation next. I knew I had to try to distract temple flameguard somehow, so I positioned Mechanithralls so they could easily charge deathjack marker if left without attention.

Nightmare with two focus and Spectral Steel charged to some Exemplar Errants, killing two of them. I was a bit bummed because of that, since I had planned on getting at least three within melee range. Mortenebra had also cast Terminal Velocity earlier.

Harrower with two focus just advances a bit and shoots its cannon at Errants, killing two more. After boosting attack roll it had one focus which it used to boost blast damage roll.

Then Satyxis make a goofy charge, where only one raider actually charges and rest just run. And damn! It kills two Errants!

Last and least Stalker goes and chews one more errant, meaning that 7 of those headaches were removed. However, feeling of triumph did not last for long...

On opponents following turn three exemplar errants and Revenger with 3 focus wreck arm 20 Nightmare. Sure I expected heavy damage... but not getting entirely wrecked!

Also, Mortenebra was just under Severius' feat. I did not enjoy that.

And as an injury to insult, Severius cast Ashes to Ashes to the back of one of his flameguards, and additional hits were 6. Under Eye of Menoth opponent didn't even need to make damage rolls, since double 1's would be exactly enough to kill anything. Oh wait, one damage roll was made... against the objective marker!

Anyway, one Satyxis and four Mechanithralls were almost 50% of my infantry.

I really tried to make a useful turn next. I tried to cast Overrun to Stalker with Deryliss (outside of Severius' control range), but was about half an inch short.

Stalker then misses one attack against errant seneschal, and other claw doesn't kill.

Satyxis charge all over the place, Temple Flameguard included. They fail their command check that was caused by Temple Flameguard's unit attachment.

Remaining mechanithralls (2) move and try to hit flameguards, missing every attack. That was to be expected though, since they had Defender's Ward on.

As a futile attempt Ripjaw goes and makes armor piercing attack against uglyn objective marker. Deals 4 points in. Mortenebra moves and tries to contest deathjack's zone.

That was just plain awful turn, just about everything failed that could fail.

Sadly I don't have a picture of opponents next turn, but ALL of the Satyxis were killed, Deryliss was killed and Stalker wrecked. Charging temple flameguard destroy Harrower's melee weapon, and after enemy finishes that brutal beating, I got only Mortenebra standing, Harrower with no melee weapon and Ripjaw left.

Any possible assassination had been made nigh impossible with the removal of Harrower's arm.

However, I took my time pondering on my possible actions, I saw a small - very small possibility of getting Ripjaw to Severius. Why, oh why Severius is not on a medium base...

Well, having lost the game otherwise I attempt it. Two focus to Ripjaw and one for Harrower.

Harrower tramples through temple flameguard, and manages to pass 9+ on two dice three times, killing three of them. Most important one was one that was engaging and blocking Ripjaw's possible movement. That was already too good to be true.

Mortenebra then casts Spectral Steel on Ripjaw and Overrun on herself, uses her feat and kills one temple flameguard that had ran to engage her. Ripjaw moves 7", and easily goes to chew Severius a little, ignoring free strikes thanks to Ghostly from Spectral Steel.

So it got two attacks in with a damage boost. Both times attack roll had to be re-rolled, I did not even boost them, because I was playing for maximum possible damage.

First damage roll with P+S 12 was ridiculous, something like 4,5,6. If I remember right, it left focusless Severius to four hit points. Bought attack came with P+S 10, and with three dice rolled enough to kill Severius.

I don't remember having this weird last resort victory in Mk2. I actually didn't even feel like winning, I felt like cheating, because this outcome was so unexpected even for me.

Still a good game, though, with nasty choices to be made.

But I guess you can pull off pretty crazy stuff if dice won't fail even once.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Brighter and Darker Good (Talisman)

So, last write-up from weekend.

A game of Talisman, this time with a little mix & match style ending.

We used Dragon's Tower inner region, but we didn't use the Dragon Lord (drawing normal adventure cards instead). Then we had a random ending at the Crown of Command.

Characters drawn were the Prophetess and Vampire Hunter (I guess the characters weren't properly shuffled, or Vampire Hunter just wanted to have her revenge).

It was somewhat funny pairing, since both had Good alignment, but had very different takes on "being good". One of them was the iconic good prophetess, and the other one a sort anti-hero with a good heart.


Both characters had a way of manipulating drawn adventure cards, that made up for two things: Rapid character development for both, and endless days and short nights.

Game was fairly even for a long time, but finally Prophetess' ability to juggle spells gave her a weird edge - she managed to push her Strenght value to levels where it didn't actually matter too much any longer.

Prophetess chose to try to climb up the tower, and she had climbed about 1/3 when Vampire Hunter entered Inner Region too. Characters had quite equal Craft values, but Prophetess had build up way too much muscle for Vampire Hunter ever to compete with her.

But still - both characters inside Inner Region during the endgame. That's always somewhat thrilling.

However, a weird event took all discarded Enemies, shuffled them and placed them on top of Adventure Deck. Prophetess was lucky when she drew 4 wimpy enemies and beat them all - taking 5 steps forward and arriving at the Crown of Command.

Ending was Judgement Day, and fate counters gave a +-0 to the result. Prophetess had no Fate left, so it was all dice there. And it came out as 1, meaning Judgement Day was discarded and game went on with the basic Crown of Command ending!

However, Prophetess was so adept at using new found powers from the Crown that she failed only one or two rolls, all others dealing damage to already wounded Vampire Hunter. Finally this resulted in Vampire Hunter dying just to the final steps of the Dragon's Tower...

Monday, March 11, 2013

You don't mess up with the Ghost Ship

Last Saturday had one game of Touch of Evil and Talisman.

This write-up goes for Touch of Evil.

We randomised a villain from the four unplayed ones that came with The Coast -expansion.

And it was to be the Ghost Ship.

Heroes were Harlow Morgan, the Inventor and Heinrich the drifter.

Harlow was bound to have some trouble because of his Spirit value of 1, and Heinrich seemed to be the dedicated Ghost Pirate killer with his good starting Spirit.

However, soon we realised that the Ghost Ship with pillage -event did in fact have a nice interaction with Harlow's inventing abilities.

Since the game was played a couple of days ago, I don't remember the juicy little stories inside of the game, but generally speaking, the Shadow Track was merciful for us for a long time. Heroes had all the time in the world to collect Investigation and gear up. In fact - the loss of corner locations started to look like a bigger problem than Shadow Track.

This was probably because there were next to none Murder! cards being played that spawned Ghost Pirates everywhere.

Also Sacred Chalice from Monastery items worked like a charm - it discarded a whole ton of Mystery cards without expiring.

Big setback came when ghastly horde murdered two of the Town Elders in one fell sweep, dropping Shadow Track 4 dots down, bringing it to red zone.

Hunting party was formed and Ghost Ship almost raided.

Things would have probably been a lot better, but four town elders were found to be Evil Elders, and two of them even had the Darkest Secret. This brought the attack dice available to Ghost Ship to such disgusting amounts that even Heinrichs few turns of 14-16 dice and Harlow Morgan's 8 dice weren't enough.

The ship had 36 wounds, by the way. For the record, it was left with 14. Over 20 wounds dealed by heroes was still pretty good, no?

The City attracts big guys (Talisman)

A friend visited me for a few days, and we are both rather enthuasiastic board gamers.

So, needless to say, a crapload of games was played during the course of weekend. Though technically that isn't true - the amount of games wasn't that big, but the hours spent in those was!

First, last Friday we played two games of 2-player Talisman. It took almost 9 hours. How on earth? Well. Let's start.

Game 1:

There is some perverse pleasure in playing Talisman with all available expansion with all available additional rules. So, we had Dragon King thing going on with the Dragon Realm inner board. We had Reaper, day/night card, Werewolf and all boards currently released.

Even the boards alone start to take up quite a lot of space, not to mention all decks and their separate discard piles...

So, it was bound to take really long time even with two players already familiar with the system.

Anyway, characters that were randomly drawn were Grave Robber and Ogre Chieftain. This was especially nice, since neither had been played before.

Sadly I've forgotten most of the awesome little stories the game included, though a special story mention goes to Ogre Chieftain, the dominator of monsters. His mighty rulership and "might makes right" way of thinking became more and more questionable as game progressed. He only had a couple of followers, Stinker the skunk and some thieving magpie, and a random street urchin. No-one actually said it to Ogre Chieftain's face, but that's no army if you ask me.

Somehow Ogre just couldn't find any enemies to fight, and those he did fight, he somehow manages to lose or fight to a draw. Sure he slowly beat up some of the smaller critters, but all in all, his progress was dreadfully slow. He did find all kinds of wonderful magical trinkets and whatnot, but once Grave Robber shattered Ogre's Golden Gauntlets that provided him with +2 strenght, he was fighting in way different league than the dirty digger.

Grave Robber, on the other hand, played a steady game. Sure he had some downfalls (such as losing a warhorse he had bought with 6 gold from Livery Stable), but at least he progressed. A certain lunar event that gave every character spells enough to fill their full spell allowance at the start of turn helped Grave Robber a bit more than Ogre Chieftain, and in the end (after 4 hours of play) he had quite disgusting ratio of strengh/craft.

It all came to a quick end when Grave Robber drew this portal thing from Varthraxs' deck and rolled exactly 22, teleporting him straight to Crown of Command. With his valiant warhorse, Grave Robber did not even need to roll dice. Even if he rolled 1 and Varthrax 6, he would still win.

So, a victory for Grave Robber!

And then.

Game 2:

After taking a small break, we decided to play another game of Talisman with a little faster game mode. We ditched the dragon lords, Reaper and Werewolf, and took random revealed alternative ending, which proved to be Assassin's Guild.

I'm sure neither of us expected the game to actually surpass game 1 in lenght.


Characters that were drawn were Minotaur and Rogue. Again characters that had never been played before! I was ecstatic.

Both characters had a fast start, but Minotaur had faster. Two times in short order Minotaur had rolled 5 or 6 for movement and was lucky enough to encounter some Strenght 6-8 monsters. That's a really huge boost early in game.

Rogue managed to snatch stat rises here and there with Enchantress and Temple and whatnot. But minotaur with his mighty horns and a herd of riding horses and his loyal dragon companion Singe killed just about anything they came to pass, and hoarded Wanted posters quite quickly.

Somewhere there things started going awry with Rogue. She couldn't find any enemies she had on her Wanted posters, and lucky stat rises were long gone. Penniless, she encountered these law enforcement monsters that throw you in jail if you lose to them. Despite she having advantage of +1 against it, she loses and is taken to jail. This happened in some woods in outer region. The hand of law sure reaches far...

To make things really horrible, she just doesn't manage to roll 5+ to escape. Rogue dies in jail, leaving Champion of Light and mule or something to rot there too, without a possibility of escape. Another character drawn is the Vampire Hunter, who was severely behind in strenght and craft.

However, game mode was one of that kind where you just have to rush quickly to Crown of Command, and then you win the game. There could have been a slight chance for Vampire Hunter...

Especially, when Minotaur was stuck with Wanted: Cultist, and Vampire Hunter was good, and all wanted posters on city gate were Wanted: Evil Character!

Countless turns Minotaur tried to find even one cultist from the Dungeon, to no avail. He had a really absurd Strenght value, 16 in the red dots plus more from equipment and followers. And add in 1-6 from stampede.

We, the players, were starting to get really tired and I'm ashamed how stupid things made us giggle like ten year olds. And some higher power seemed to have decided that the game would last forever and forever. For example, when Minotaur got a nice little spell to change alignment of a player, he rolled a crapton of damage against Lord of Darkness and was teleported straight to Crown of Command. Nice. Except he had only 3 wanted posters done from the required 4... Moving back from Crown to Portal of Power really took forever.

Special mention goes to Whiskers, the cat, whose loyalty to Vampire Hunter was heartbreaking. They encountered a water elemental during their trip to the City, that drenched the cat and swept it away from her loving owner. However, just the next turn, Whiskers returned! Mind you, Vampire Hunter did not actually land in the square with Whiskers. That would've meant she found Whiskers. She rolled enough to move to Town Square, though, and there was a joyous meeting!

... and then Minotaur had finally managed to crawl out of Inner Region.

Then there were countless turns where he tried to get to city gates to get Wanted: Evil Character poster. He finally succeeded, and then there were countless turns of him chasing Vampire Hunter around. Finally that succeeded too, and she was momentarily turned to evil alignment by minotaurs spell, and finally he had four wanted posters!

Yay! Game would end soon, because Minotaur had riding horses, and could ride like the wind to Lord of Darkness and beat him up again to teleport to Crown of Command!

... if it only would have been so.

Minotaur rolled many, many turn 3-6 with two dice as his movement. Some god of Talisman really didn't want us to let go to sleep.

But... eventually Minotaur reached Lord of Darkness, and game was over.

Victory for Minotaur.

And a loss for illusion of thinking "Assassin's Guild" as being a faster game mode!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

The frogs are staring at me. It burns.

This is somewhat of a painting update.

I don't usually blog about painted Warmachine models, because at least ideally there should be quite a lot of them coming at a decent pace. That may not have been the case for some time now...

However, I don't really spam stuff either in my army lists. I think I got two necrotechs, two warwitch sirens and some cryxian arc nodes as doublets.

So now that I finished my second Basilisk Drake, it was somewhat special occasion. Basilisks were one of the first Skorne models I had painted, and it's been a few years since. I painted them with exactly same color scheme, so it was a perfect little moment to see if I've made any progress at all during couple last years in painting.

It's a little embarrassing how poor the pictures are again, but I think it still shows that the frog on left looks a bit nicer. In reality it's a bit more better, since you can actually see some highlight in red parts.

Comparing your personal progress can be difficult, when you paint multiple armies with different paint schemes and different look. Here it wasn't much of a problem, since it was the very same model, with very same paintjob.

And then, I decided to take a groupshot, too. I had earlier fixed up a little Skorne bases with exact front arc templates, and did color coding on the bases too (dark blue back arc for warlocks and beasts, a little lighter blue for units, and the lightest blue for solos). I did this about a year and a half ago for my Cryx, and still need to do this for Circle.

Anyway, here they are, at the moment my Skorne collection is 100% painted.

Friday, March 1, 2013

March, my thralls, March!

A game versus Cygnar.

Since I played against same list as in earlier post, I won't bother to rewrite it.

I took Goreshade out this time with following 35 point list:

Goreshade the Bastard
- Harrower
- Nightmare

Maximum unit of Satyxis Raiders + Sea Witch
Minimum unit of Bile Thralls
Necrosurgeon & Stitch Thralls
Warwitch Siren
Satyxis Raider Captain

We randomised Incursion scenario, and we were practicing playing with a deathclock for upcoming little event. However, deathclock made me kind of forget to take pictures during game; only one badly focused one was taken.

Cryx won starting roll, but I chose to pick side & go second, as there really was some rock, paper & scissors match-ups going on. I wanted my Bile Thralls far away from Gun Mages, and I wanted Satyxis to hug Gun Mages.

Nightmare chose Ol' Rowdy as its prey.

Flag that disappeared was the one farthest to right. That was obviously the flag that I had positioned all Satyxis Raiders to... oh well. At least they still got disgusting charge range, and were claiming elevation bonus on hill. Defense 18 against shooting makes them rather survivable, as I was about to see.

Picture is taken from the end of Cryxian second turn, where scoring would've been possible for the first time.

What had happened was that Nightmare had charged Greygore Boomhowler's and killed, well... one, and was teleported to Stitch Thrall via Soul Gate. This unit actually served no other purpose in the list except being a Soul Gate beacon.

Harrower scored a lucky shot against a Greygore grunt, and a bile thrall used it's spray on one grunt that was knocked down after Nightmare had been partying around. Killed. What a sniper.

Satyxis Captain used Desperate Pace on Raiders, who used Power Swell and charged plenty of targets. One more Boomhowler grunt died, as well as a gun mage. Damage done to Defender was pathetic, and didn't even Feedback anyone, since the 'jack was being marshaled. Well, hindsight makes things sound so well-planned. I didn't actually keep in my mind that Defender was marshaled when I declared those charges...

All in all, damage done by Satyxis even under Power Swell was a lackluster this time, but sure they were tying up a large portion of opposing army. However.

Satyxis were almost last unit to activate, when I notice that yeah, I'm playing against epic Caine again, and there isn't all that big distance between casters... Panicking, Necrosurgeon, Stitch Thralls and Deathwalker try to take up space around Goreshade to prevent possible Gate Crash attempt. Goreshade was focusless, Soul Gate had taken 3 focus, Shadowmancer another 3 and one had been allocated to Nightmare.

Well, there never was any gate crash attempt, and possibly couldn't have been, either. But assisted by Madelyn Corbeau and Squire's additional focus, and Reinholdt's additional shot, Caine plunged forward, used his feat and cast that particular True Sight spell on himself.

We messed up a little and later back-tracked one shot a little (we did remember true sight ignored stealth, but didn't remember it also ignored concealment from forest?) but net result was that Goreshade came down to four or five damage boxes. Despite Caine not having his full amount of focus. And two of the damage rolls were really bad. Nightmare on the board was not my warjack, it was that horrible threat range Caine has.

But. Assassination had failed. Caine was standing in the middle, protected only by few models that had run close by, trying to block charges.

Four purges later there were a lot less models about, and Caine had taken some nine damage points in or so. Nightmare had been allocated three focus, and Goreshade had cast Shadowmancer. I had messed up Necrosurgeon's placement, though, so I wasn't able to run Deathwalker within 5" of Caine.

I would've loved to end his life with P+S 22 combo-strike, but 9+ to hit is always 9+ to hit.

Boosted charge attack did hit, though, and scored more than enough to paste the gunslinger.

It was a fast and furious game, and I certainly hope that some day in the future I learn to screen my warcaster when playing against epic Caine. This was such a close call again, though I did have Deathwalker within 3" as a one-time life-insurance for Goreshade. Still it makes you a bit scared when your caster starts taking 9 points hits home.