Well, then there was this funny game that was indeed very enlightening...
It was played during worst hangover I have ever had (I don't usually have any hangover at all, so that's not an excessive statement) but I lucked out as it turned - my opponent wasn't in too shabby condition either!
And for a 35 point HangoverMachine I chose epic Hexeris, since I have played only little against Cygnar with Skorne.
My list was:
Lord Arbiter Hexeris
- Archidon (bonded)
- 2x Basilisk Drake
- Basilisk Krea
- Cyclops Shaman
Maximum unit of Praetorian Swordsmen + Unit Attachment
Bloodrunner Master Tormentor
- Ol' Rowdy
Arcane Tempest Gun Mages + Officer
Minimum unit of Greygore Boomhowler & Co
Scenario was randomised to be Process of Elimination. Skorne got to go first, which was good. It'd been horrible to start the game already taking in aimed shots from Cygnaran weaponry. Even like this a lucky shot from a Gun Mage killed off Bloodrunner Master Tormentor on turn 1.
Ashen Veil on Praetorian Swordsmen and two blocks of Paralytic Aura was my attempt at screening my troops from shooting, and I think it worked pretty well. Def 13 warbeasts on a hill had respectable def 17 against shooting while within 2" of Basilisk Krea. Sadly, next turn they would have to go somewhere from there.
Ol' Rowdy and Greygore Boomhowler rushed forward, killing some Swordsmen in the process, and Defender took a solid shot Archidon. But that was all - for now. Greygore's troops had Blur on them, so there would be no Black Spotting them.
Defender and Caine both got magic bullets on them. Hexeris took a disturbing amount of damage in from those two pesky pow 12's. All damage was taken in, because I was confident I'd be able to heal Hexeris somewhat with Vampiric Harvest.
Starting my second turn I picked up 7 Fury tokens from my warbeasts. Was Hexeris a Fury 8 warlock? Nope, no he wasn't. Luckily Basilisk Drake didn't get all angry and decided to play nice for at least another round.
I was wondering if I could actually pull off an assassination. Caine was Focusless and I would be able to get two fully boosted Hellfires in if I could get Archidon into proper position.
First I tried everything I could to get rid of Greygore's. Every other trollkin fell down except the big guy himself - who was right in the way of Archidon. But since I put the plan in motion, why stop here... Archidon put on itself Lightning Strike animus and charged Madelyn Corbeau that was hanging around close to the objective. This would get a free strike from Boomhowler, though. But hey, it's a heavy warbeast. Surely it can take one hit, especially when Greygore has -2 to attack rolls from Ashen Veil?
Archidon lost it's mind. Sight of the ugly trollkin was just too much to bear.
So now, boosted to 2 dice Archidon would need 8+ to hit and if it fails, its channeling abilities would be disabled. Not exactly a good thing. But dice gods were on Skorne's side, 8+ it was and Madelyn fell down. Archidon repositioned itself for better LOS against Caine.
Cyclops Shaman had already tried to take a pot shot at Caine with its evil eye, but failed miserably. I guess it looked at the disturbing trollkin too, not at Caine.
Basilisk Krea put on Paralytic Aura on itself and basilisk Drake tried to fry a couple of gun mages. I don't remember if it did much, but the main point was to fill up some fury for Hexeris' feat.
Then Hexeris activated and launched first boosted Hellfire at Caine. Miss. No 10+ on three dice this time.
This made me reconsider things a little. I wouldn't probably be able to kill Caine with just one Hellfire. Hexeris still used his feat, but used it to cast Ashes to Ashes on Defender instead. Target number was a whopping 6, which smeared plenty of gun mages, Reinholdt and even Squire with an astonishing 5,6 damage roll. Hexeris boosted damage on Caine, but left two Fury left for transfers. Because Caine would probably just go all trigger happy and shoot Hexeris down, despite him having Paralytic Aura on.
Sooo... Extoller Soulward was the only model blocking Caine's LOS to Hexeris. If Greygore could kill the extoller, Caine could just take aimed shots at Hexeris. And Extoller didn't say "no" to Greygore's axe.
Defender tried to shoot at Hexeris, too, but either it missed or rolled very low damage. Situation was then: Caine with RAT 11 and 6 Focus vs a little damaged Hexeris with DEF 17 ARM 18 vs shooting and 2 Fury left for transfers. If memory serves, which probably doesn't, Hexeris had taken 4 damage in at that point (after all healing from Vampiric Harvest.)
Caine shoots once and boosts damage. Hexeris takes it to the stomach.
Caine shoots a second time and boosts damage, and Hexeris has to transfer or die.
Caine shoots third time, and Hexeris takes it to the stomach.
Caine shoots fourth time, misses.
Caine shoots fifth time, Hexeris has to transfer damage away.
Caine shoots sixth and last time, Hexeris is down to 4 hit boxes and shots would come in at POW 16, meaning that Hexeris would go down on 6+ to hit and 6+ to damage. Attack roll results, however, a miss.
So... I will probably wet my bed in horror if I actually want to think that had I not scored lucky kills on Reinholdt and Squire, Caine would have had two shots more... and even now I needed a good dose of luck to survive that feat.
On my turn I thought it'd be best if I just shot an autohitting POW 10 in form of Ashes to Ashes on Defender to Caine and boost damage and finish things up with Archidon if needed.
It wasn't needed. Additional targets from Ashes to Ashes was again full 6, and damage roll against Caine was something like 5,5,6.
I think that Ashes to Ashes really rolls additional targets better when not fighting against Protectorate of Menoth!