Few days ago I played a couple of Warmachine games.
I knew I was most probably facing High Exemplar Kreoss, so I wanted to play with Warwitch Deneghra. She was last of my warcasters/warlocks that hadn't played against Kreoss1 - and now I have collected a sort of a "set" in my personal Funny Families cavalcade in Warmachine/Hordes.
However, I do hate list tailoring, so I tried a couple of wacky things. We were playing 25 points, and my list was:
Maximum unit of Cephalyx Mind Slaver & Drudge Thralls (YES!)
Iron Lich Overseer
And opponent had:
High Exemplar Kreoss
Maximum unit of Exemplar Errants
Vassal of Menoth
We played two games, and first scenario was Ammunition Run. Cryx got to start, and I kind of accidentally found out how fast army composition I had. Two warwitches could make the two bonejacks run, and Overseer could run around with Slayer. Since Deneghra doesn't have any important spells to fling during first round, she was able to run, camping all 7 focus.
Running at such high speeds is a little dangerous, though. Next turn Skarlock cast Ghost Walk on Deneghra, and Deneghra went forward to dominate my objective. She tried to cast 3x Venom + Influence on Exemplar Errants, but she had just walked into Kreoss' control area, right into Lamentation. Oh, poopy.
What's even more embarrassing is that on Protectorate's second turn, Crusader charged objective and destroyed it. Deneghra was set on fire and took 5 damage in, since she had emptied her focus. Repenter and its spray was easily within 8" of Deneghra, so the jack tried to come and burn the witch a little. However, she took 12 points in from that damage roll, and she had only 11 left.
All this felt a little too familiar. I guess my witch never learns.
Same lists, but we switched sides and scenario. Scenario was Incoming.
Cryx got the start again, and this time around I actually tried to plan around my newly found speed. Opponent had made a curious two-flank deployment where exemplar errants & Vilmon were going to contest zone on left and Kreoss himself was on right side with full entourage of warjacks & Vassal of Menoth.
I had this grand plan of bringing one arc node, one warwitch siren and possibly slayer & iron lich overseer to get the left zone for Dragonfather.
However, it didn't quite work that way. First of all, Ripjaw's Venom sprays killed only a few exemplar errants, and then Vilmon himself was upon Ripjaw. Ripjaw lost its head first, so I couldn't really do anything to Vilmon, and rest of Cryxian assets were way too far away to do anything. Then I wanted to aggressively push my own zone and hope for a caster kill. To make things really really bad a lucky Cleansing Fire destroyed Deathripper's arc node straight away.
Drudge Thralls actually made some good tough rolls in this game when Repenter was shooting at them. Too bad that they still had to survive from upcoming Fire continous effects.
Second picture gives a partial scene from the end of Protectorate's second round. Because I really had to try to get through Lamentation now I got no useful arc nodes I used Deneghra's feat.
To be honest it did very little on my own turn - Parasite + Feat + charge from Drudge Thralls wrecked Repenter, but everything else failed miserably. Deathripper with one focus was going to bite Revenger (really far in right in the picture, just left out from picture) but missed. It bought another attack, but p+s 13 doesn't really do much vs armor 17 only with two dice. A Drudge Thrall didn't do much better.
Kreoss with 10" control range didn't want to use his feat just yet, he just upkept Lamentation and backed off a little. He probably gave some focus to jacks too who mauled drudges and even MAT 4 Revenger managed to hit Deathripper too.
It seems I didn't include a picture from the end of Protectorate's turn, but the follow-up picture is where I attempted an assassination. Since Kreoss had upkept Lamentation, casting boosted Crippling Grasp on him took all 7 focus from her. I truly hoped it'd be worth it.
Skarlock cast Ghost Walk on drudges and two got to charge Kreoss. The other one missed and the other one hit and did some damage in. Then Warwitch Siren charges Kreoss too and scores a hit, dealing WHOPPADOOYAEYEI damage. Kreoss was still left standing with two hit boxes.
And here is a little rant that goes with this: Guess what is the damage difference from combo-striking Mechanithralls, that are cheaper and faster and deal more damage than Drudge Thralls and have the same MAT? Yup, that's right, their difference is 2. So if I had used a full unit of mechanithralls with one brute thrall, Kreoss could've been dead with exact same rolls.
I really want to like drudge thralls, they dance YMCA so beautifully too, but how can anyone like them with performance like this?
Ok, let's continue.
Kreoss obviously used his feat now, and I was almost sure Deneghra would go down again. I had ran one of the Warwitch Sirens close to Deneghra to prevent a possible trample, but I wasn't sure if that would ever be enough.
Revenger (I think Revenger isn't seen in any of the pictures? - oh wait, there it is, in the very last.) killed Drudge Thrall that was blocking Crusader, and then Crusader attempted to charge def 5 arm 14 Deneghra. Luckily the heavy warjack just couldn't squeeze far enough in between another drudge thrall and warwitch siren, so its charge failed.
Afterwards we noticed that the often overlooked Arcane Bolt from Vassal of Menoth could have been the key to victory, if it would've dispatched a Drudge Thrall.
But then it was Cryx turn again. Deneghra upkept Crippling Grasp and shaked herself up, Skarlock cast Ghost Walk on Deneghra and then she charged Kreoss.
Looks like Kreoss is missing from the picture, though. Duh, he's dead!