Monday, August 31, 2015

Venethrax Doesn't Bother with Small Print

Last Saturday I played a 50 point game of Warmachine.

I thought to toy around with Venethrax since he's up in Active Duty Roster. If some sort of tournament comes around later this year, I might take part with Venethrax/Asphyxious1 list pair.

So this was my list:

- Seether

Minimum unit of Bane Thralls + Unit Attachment
Maximum unit of Nyss Hunters
Withershadow Combine
Maximum unit of Satyxis Raiders + Sea Witch
Satyxis Raider Captain
Ogrun Bokur
Wrong Eye & Snapjaw

Opponent was playing:

Northern Crusade tier 2
Hierarch Severius
- Judicator
- Reckoner
- Blessing of Vengeance

Maximum unit of Temple Flameguard + Unit Attachment
Rhoven & Honor guard
Covenant of Menoth
Vassal Mechanic
2x Vassal of Menoth

Scenario was Outflank and Protectorate started game. First picture is from the end of Cryx turn 1.

Turn 2 Blessing of Vengeance enters the... uh... right side? Upper? scenario zone, and Severius starts flinging spells. Most notably he just cast Influence repeatedly on Ogrun Bokur, who, as it looks like, still retains client bonuses even if he is controlled by the enemy. I guess Ogrun Bokur hastily showed up some sort of contract to Venethrax, who didn't even bother to read who had signed the contract. I bet he could have seen the shaky handwriting of the old man Severius on that paper.

Well, Ogrun Bokur single-handedly killed Snapjaw. Then Severius cast Fear of God on Seether, which came as a bit of a surprise. Somehow you'd think you can only cast that spell on units, but no, there is no such requirement.

I don't remember who eventually killed Ogrun Bokur, but its only use for me was to Shield Guard a shot against Wrong Eye. Wow. I didn't realise it then, but that Bokur truly was such a jerk. He shielded Wrong-Eye from damage all the while beating the crap out of Wrong Eye's pet alligator.

Temple Flameguard charge to engage Satyxis. They use their minifeat as Satyxis would ignore Shield Wall anyway. Satyxis passed their Command check.

Venethrax had cast Soul Harvester on Satyxis, and this was one of the first times for a long, long time where that spell was actually useful. But I'm getting ahead of things.

First Bane Thralls charge Blessing of Vengeance, but only two get into contact with it. Defensive Strike downs the other one, but it passes Tough check. I was thinking of using Admonia to get rid of Fear of God and possibly even Holy Ward on Temple Flameguard, but 6" move and 5" range fell about a quarter of an inch short from disbinding Seether, and almost two inches short of cleansing Flameguard. What a waste.

Now Seether could only go and punch Blessing of Vengeance once with no serious damage being done instead of performing a double handed throw and starting to score control points.

Venethrax advanced forward and camped some focus. He also had Dragon Slayer on. I wanted him mid-field to use his Feat.

Then Satyxis activated and used Power Swell. I should have probably saved that one for later, but somehow I was thinking the Sea Witch could die next turn somehow. Well, this yielded four souls for Venethrax and quite a few cloud effects.

Nyss Hunters sacrificed one of their own to cause a cloud effect close to Venethrax. They also shot one or two additional Flameguards, but that was all.

Wrong Eye advanced so that if it died next turn, he'd explode into a cloud that hopefully would block Line of Sight to Venethrax.

Turn 3 Severius used his feat and chose to kill Bane Thralls with it. Only Bane Thrall Officer died, though. Everybody else passed their Tough rolls. Next Severius casts enough Influences on a Bane Thrall so that it wrecks Seether. So now I had lost 18 points worth of models to attacks made by my own models. Oh well. At least Bane Thralls continued to roll Tough rolls like crazy - Bane Casualties for that turn were only the Officer and one other Grunt - and three that were knocked down.

I think only one Satyxis died to Flameguard, and Wrong Eye got pasted by Judicator.

But I needed to take some drastic actions now to stay in the game. Both Seether and Snapjaw were gone, and most of Bane Thralls wouldn't be charging this turn.

But the Banes that are able to charge, charge Blessing of Vengeance, and even Judicator. I thought I might as well try to bring -2 ARM for Judicator, even if the chances were really low as the thrall in question needed to survive a free strike from Blessing of Vengeance. Didn't make it, as expected.

Nyss Hunters charge next, and five get to Judicator. The rest just try to look like they're doing something, even if they are not. Damage against Judicator is a bit on the poor side, but luckily they are not the only models I've got reserved for charging the colossal!

Then I activate Satyxis Raiders. I get four of them to charge Judicator, and the rest attack what's left of Temple Flameguard. It was a risk, since Satyxis would need to make another Command check. But I didn't want to waste, what, four or five Satyxis and their attacks just becauseI was afraid to engage Temple Flameguard. So... instead I wasted the whole activation of Satyxis Raiders. yup. Command check was double fives. Why, Toruk... Just why??

This time Admonia succeeded in bringing down Holy Ward, and Tremulus gave Puppet Master for Venethrax.

Would P+S 16 Venethrax bring down a lightly injured Judicator with 10 Focus?

Nope. Even with Puppet Master he leaves Judicator to two hit boxes. Two hit boxes... Such a low number was the dice gods truly rubbing it in my face with Satyxis failing their command check. After all, four P+S 9 +3d6 attacks, with possibility for a couple of horns + lacerator Combined Melee Attacks would have most likely scored at least two damage. Cortex and Movement were the systems that were still fully functional for Judicator.

Turn 4 and it was Protectorate's time to repair Judicator just one point and end the game. Choir sang hymns of battle, and Vassal Mechanic proceeded to roll the repair check. This time the Mechanic was as skilled in his craft as Satyxis were in their leadership - the check failed. Was there a glimmer of hope I see, now?

Probably not, since Severius cast Awareness, and started removing Bane Thralls with help from Blessing of Vengeance. Bane Thralls had passed approximately around 60% of Tough rolls they had needed to make during the game. So this is how it goes. Pass a maximum of 2 Tough rolls for three games, and then balance it with being right next to immune to damage for one game.

Reckoner takes aiming bonus and tries to shoot Venethrax. Intervening models are no problem thanks to Awareness. RAT 9 vs DEF 19. About 50% chance of spelling doom for Venethrax - and the roll fails. Imporant bit here is that Venethrax didn't suffer Flare penalties. MAT 7 Judicator tried to punch Venethrax next. It needed 8+ to hit the Lich Lord, but since its weapon systems were broken, a boost meant it had only two dice to try and reach that elusive 8+. Which never came.

But I couldn't sigh from relief just yet. Rhoven & Honor Guard charged Venethrax. Though only Gius or Cassian got into contact with him, that tiny knight had Blessed on his halberd. One swing took nine points off from Venethrax.

And last but not least, even the Temple Flameguard officer charged Venethrax and survived a free strike by some random Satyxis. He scored a hit, but dealt only two additional points. But worst part here was that Venethrax was now set on fire...

Well then.

Looks like I still have a turn to play.

Venethrax backs off like the powerful and fearless supervillain he is. But not before the Nyss butcher up Judicator, and Satyxis Captain takes care of Gius or Cassian. Last Bane Thralls and two charging Nyss finally wreck Blessing of Vengeance. Shame that I got no solos nearby to run to the zone and start controlling.

Turn 5 Severius seizes scenario game. Bane Thralls had finally stopped passing Tough rolls, but not before Severius had expended his last focus point in clearing the zone.

Because game had already lasted for quite a while, and control points were 0-2 in the favor of Protectorate, I thought it'd be best to try and assassinate the hierarch once and for all, and not try to whittle down enemy troops and hopefully contest enemy zone for many turns to come.

Five Nyss get to shoot Severius, but fail to kill him. He had been left with, what, two or three damage boxes?

Tremulus had one soul from earlier kills and he used that one for attack boost against Severius. It's a hit. Five or six for damage and Severius would be dead. It would have fit the big picture if that damage roll would have failed, but it didn't. Tremulus exchanged the soul of Vassal of Menoth to that of Severius.

Had that failed I guess I would have tried to charge Venethrax as far as possible and hope for a good deviation from Blood Rain. But that would have been quite a stretch.

Yet again a very close and very awkward game. So many game changing moments, where dice just went awry or critical distances were misjudged by quarter of an inch.

Sunday, August 30, 2015


Last Tuesday I played a 50 point game of Warmachine.

I had finished painting a third Helldiver, so obviously I had to make a list that utilises it.

Here was what I came up with:

Asphyxious the Hellbringer & Vociferon
- 3x Helldiver
- Nightmare

Maximum unit of Satyxis Raiders + Sea Witch
Maximum unit of Soulhunters
Withershadow Combine
Darragh Wrathe
Satyxis Captain
Warwitch Siren
Pistol Wraith

Objective: Effigy of Valor (Why? Because I don't trust CMD 9 anymore.)

Opponent had Legion of Everblight. What was sad, however, was the fact that Asphyxious wouldn't be getting trillion zillion souls from a ton of Legion warbeasts, no.

List was:

Thagrosh, Prophet of Everblight
- Archangel
- Carnivean

Maximum unit of Warspears + Chieftain
Blackfrost Shard
Maximumm unit of Croak Raiders

Objective: Arcane Wonder

Scenario was Two Fronts. There have been a lot of fronts lately... Anyway, Legion started game. First picture is from the end of Cryx turn 1, where failing hard has already begun. I had just told the opponent how fun it is to make that 14" charge with Satyxis Raiders, though sometimes holding them back for one additional turn might actually be a better option. But here we go again, charging to 14" and running to engage to 18" - with Ashen Veil on them for maximum annoyance.

In the middle of the activation of Satyxis Raiders I notice that Satyxis Captain hasn't, well, activated yet. So what could have been a charge against three to four Croaks and tying most of the unit up came off as no charge attacks and engaging what... four of them? I made a mental note of playing a little better the upcoming turns. And I guess I did. But sometimes you need a little more than just playing a little better...

Turn 2 from Legion isn't that bad, though. Only four Satyxis die to attack made by tons of frogmen, the Archangel, Carnivean and the Ogrun Warspears. Important bit here is that it doesn't cause a Command check for them. I'm starting to feel like Cmd 9 equals Cmd 7 for me. Sea Witch is set on fire, though.

On my turn the fire wears (thankfully) off.

Since it was second players second turn, I saw a real opening for scenario play. I brought Asphyxious as far forward as possible, cast Scything Touch on Soulhunters and Ashen Veil on himself. Asphyxious even used his feat to discourage opponent from bringing beasts closer. It's possible I was a bit over-cautious and paranoid there, but hey. So many times I have overextended my warcaster. This game would not be one of those... maybe.

Honourable mention goes to Pistol Wraith during this turn. It advanced a bit and wanted to shoot the Warspear dead who was contesting my friendly zone with his toe. First attack hit, no problem. Damage roll, however, was 1,1. Oh well. Maybe second shot would at least soften the Ogrun up for something else to kill it? Yes, it's a hit! Damage roll. However. Was 1,1. Well done! Then Pistol Wraith attempted the third Death Chill attack. Attack roll is 1,3. And Wraith needed fives to hit. Really?

Withershadow Combine activated next. Tremulus gave Puppet Master for Soulhunters, and Maelovus and Admonia tried to shoot the Warspear that had been impervious to any damage and to any effect at all that Pistol Wraith had tried to do. Turns out the iron liches aren't any better in shooting Def 12 targets.

Satyxis use Power Swell and charge around. Four Satyxis charged the Croak Raiders, and two charged Ogrun Warspears. One of the Satyxis brought herself within 4" of the objective so they wouldn't need to take a dreaded command check. If I'm counting right I made seven attacks with MAT 6 against DEF 13. Two attacks (2) hit. Both scored a kill, though. But still. Then there were two Satyxis that had charged a Warspear that was contesting my friendly zone. That Warspear also had Spiny Growth on. One Satyxis didn't get charge bonuses, so she rolled her attacks first. It's possible she scored one or two damage points with two attacks. The last Satyxis suffered Set Defence penalties, so I didn't really expect her to hit or do anything. Rolls had been so horrible anyway. But damage roll came up as 5,5,6,6 or something comparable. Was this the turning point?

Next Satyxis Captain charges enemy objective. I think the attack did seven points of damage. Plasma Nimbus took Satyxis Captain's life, though. Good riddance.

Incorporeal Soulhunters charge next. Only one gets to the objective, which was nasty as I had somehow hoped I'd get two.

One Soulhunter charges the Warspear who had dodged Pistol Wraith and the Withershadow Combine.

I spent the Puppet Master on destroying the enemy objective. I think it was left with one damage box or something, and one of my dice had been a one. At least re-roll helped here and the objective was a wreck.

Next it's time to make cavalry charge attack against the last Warspear who was contesting zone. It's a hit, YES! The Warspear has been actually HIT. My moral was immediately raised... only to be crushed miserably with the poor damage roll. It did damage, but not enough to get a kill.

On the verge of tears I make light cavalry movements, and the heroic Soulhunter took two free strikes from various Warspears. Needless to say, the horsie became an undead sausage.

Now. I still had Darragh Wrathe. I had been planning on bringing him up and casting Beyond Death, but instead he had to try to shoot the thrice damned Warspear with Hellfire. And finally... finally after five failed attacks the Warspear went down. And I got two scenario points.

Darragh and one Helldiver tried to block Line of Sight to Asphyxious.

Turn 3 for Legion. I had to double check that there has not been one full round in between the pictures, but no. All that devastation came from just one turn of Legion activations.

Satyxis took a severe beating, and only one of them survived. Much to my amazement she succeeded in her Command check.

With great trouble Legion manages to clear their friendly zone of Cryx models, so it became a scenario race at this point. All the Soulhunters died, too, but it warmed my bittered soul that my objective did not die just yet.

Asphyxious got three souls from his feat.

Then it's time for me to contest enemy zone somehow and clear my own to get to three scenario points. Should be easy. Should. There's only two Warspears and Scythean with Spiny Growth in my friendly zone. And Scythean is Nightmare's Prey.

Nightmare is allocated three focus.

Darragh and two Dark Fires from Withershadow Combine should do the trick against the middle Warspear, and Nightmare should be able to dispatch Scythean and possibly the Warspear, too. If not the Warspear, Asphyxious could come to help.

Tremulus casts Puppet Master on Nightmare, and Admonia and Maelovus shoot the middle Warspear with little to no damage. It HAS to be that position. There must be something magical in it, something sinister and menacing.

Darragh then trod close to that Warspear fellow, and he had P+S 13 and 12 attacks. I don't remember the actual damage rolls, but I do remember that after these four attacks the bastard was alive with five hit boxes.

It's looking a bit grim, but I decide to sacrifice one of my Helldivers for the greater good. It has to take one free strike from a Warspear, which very likely would cause a lot of damage. But Helldivers have such an annoying damage grid that it's difficult to destroy any of the systems - and I didn't care about Cortex.

Warspear does a meager damage roll of fifteen points in and breaks Helldiver's head. At that point I wasn't sure if I was laughing or if I was crying - or if those two were very much the same thing in situations like these.

Nightmare advances into melee with Scythean and somehow manages to roll damage so nicely that it cannot buy any additional attacks after killing the warbeast - and tusks didn't kill the other Warspear in the zone. It somehow looked like Warwitch Siren might be able to charge the Warspear Nightmare had failed to kill, but I guess in my desperation I was thinking about the total threat range and added Reach on top of that. Charge fell so much short that looking at it in the picture embarrasses me.

I couldn't figure out a reliable way of getting rid of both Warspears with Asphyxious and stay safe from Archangel's retaliation, so I gave up on getting that third scenario point. Asphyxious tried to come and kill the most defiant Warspear, and just to stay on the safe side he boosts attack roll. It's a hit, but it's a bitter one.

In the enemy zone I had brought one Helldiver to contest the zone and try to eat a Blackfrost Shard member.

Now there's a full round in between the pictures, looks like.

Turn 4 Archangel wrecks Nightmare and Thagrosh uses feat to bring Scythean back. Tons of Croaks and Thagrosh are more than enough to wreck the Helldiver who was contesting, so point situation was now 2-2. Beautiful thing here was, however, that my own objective was still alive. At least I had one model, too, that rivalled the Warspears in endurance!

Cryx has its hands full with removing only three Warspears. Most of the trouble came from the fact that they were engaged.

I get my second really good roll in this game when Vociferon... yes, Vociferon charges a Warspear. And no less than one-shots it. My MAT 5, P+S 8 model succeeds where multiple necro scythes and darkest magics had failed.

Asphyxious kills one of the Warspears and combined efforts of Warwitch Siren and Darragh Wrathe kills the last one. Darragh dealt the killing blow, so it triggered a free spell, which was Beyond Death.

Scores: 3-2 in favor of Cryx.

Turn 5 Legion crushes the last Helldiver I had that was able to contest enemy zone. Yet the Croaks and Archangel somehow start to roll absurdly poorly. Not that I complained at all when my luck had been what it had been...

Croaks, Blackfrost Shard and Archangel manage only to destroy Darragh Wrathe. Scores go 3-3 and my objective is still standing.

On my turn Asphyxious leisurely walks to Archangel, kills Shepherd with initial attack, casts Scything Touch on himself with Blood Boon and starts hacking and slashing the Archangel. Venethrax would've been proud - Asphyxious single-handedly one-rounded the Archangel. Well okay, I may exaggerate a little. It took him all of his focus. And he had nine.

Warwitch Siren ran to contest enemy zone, and score was 4-3, in favor of Cryx. It's almost too painful to think what those scores had been if one particular Warspear would have had the dignity to die at one certain point of the game... Now all rested on the shoulders of Warwitch Siren. And, well, my objective.

Turn 6 I don't remember what Blackfrost Shard did, and why they didn't come to contest? There was some reason for that, but I can't remember what it was. Vociferon's free strikes, perhaps? Objective had been Kissed, that's for sure at least.

Croaks throw some oil and darts at Effigy of Valor and destroy it, so it's 4-4 now.

Thagrosh succeeds in killing Warwitch Siren, so scores would be 5-5, unless opponent got something to contest my friendly zone. Well, there was the Scythean there, though.

Now, looking back, I might have tried to block Scythean from entering my zone with Withershadow Combine. But when they activated there was still this small distraction on 120mm base standing on my zone, and I had been thinking I'd need Puppet Master and any random damage I could do to kill the dragon.

Oh well.

It was a tough and close game, and not only that... it was depressingly hilarious in all its absurdness. After all opponent managed to make his share of bad rolls at some critical moments, too, so there were times when this epic battle looked more like a pillow fight than anything life threatening.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Avatar of Maynot

Last Thursday I got to play another game of Warmachine right away.

I still wanted to play with Goreshade. I want to see him work one way or another. And as the Black Ogruns had demonstrated their effectiveness in such an exquisite manner last game, I was forced to leave them out. It hurts me to do that, but I have to harden myself. Those bastards (no, not my warcaster) have hurt my feelings, and they need to take a little pause to reflect on what they have done.

But what should I add instead? Perhaps something universally efficient, like more Banes? Hell no!

My list:

Goreshade the Bastard
- Harrower
- Leviathan
- Nightmare

Maximum unit of Mechanithralls + Skarlock Overseer
Necrosurgeon & Stitch Thralls
Maximum unit of Soulhunters
Darragh Wrathe
Necrotech & Scrap Thrall
Warwitch Siren
Saxon Orrik

Objective: Fuel Cache

Opponent had:

Feora, Priestess of Flame
- Judicator
- Avatar of Menoth

Minimum unit of Choir of Menoth
Maximum unit of Exemplar Bastions
Daughters of the Flame
The Covenant of Menoth
Vassal of Menoth
Rhupert Carvolo, Piper of Ord

Scenario was Recon, and Protectorate started game. Nightmare's prey was Daughters of the Flame. I thought that I didn't have a real answer for their high defence, so if they decided to hurl themselves to block my advance, I'd have at least Nightmare who would reliably take them down.

Recon is a nice scenario for objective placement. All of my warjacks packed themselves close to it to possibly benefit from charges at some point in the game.

Turn 2 Protectorate huddled forward. Looked like Feora would be going for left flag while Bastions, Avatar and Judicator would be contesting the zone. Challenge accepted!

Annoying deviation from Judicator caused Necrotech to perish.

On my turn Nightmare moved to the left to discourage Feora from dominating the flag. Fully loaded Leviathan and a focusless Harrower shot at the enemy objective, but rolls are fairly poor. Darragh Wrathe moves a bit and casts Death Ride, mostly just moving the Soulhunters tad forwards. Then Soulhunters charge. One goes to objective and one to a Bastion. Objective shatters and Bastions take, if I remember correctly, eleven points of damage divided between them.

Mechanithralls ran behind the Soulhunters and prayed for unlucky deviations from Judicator.

Turn 3 Protectorate moves Eiryss close close to Nightmare and disrupted it. Daughters of the Flame charged Warwitch Siren, or at least one of them tried. Charge fell only a few millimetres short.

Judicator tried to shoot my objective, and thanks to atrocious dice the fuel cache remained nearly uninjured. Bastions kill one of the Soulhunters who had charged in. Only one, because other Bastion missed. Avatar had to come and make the Soulhunter a gruesome example how things should be done.

Feora advances to dominate left flag and casts Wall of Flame to protect from charges by totally expected unexpected Bane Thralls.

Cryx turn 3 is a bit disappointing. It has a beautiful start when Saxon Orrik made his one and only shot during whole damn game, and that shot killed Vassal of Menoth.

Darragh casts Death Ride again to move Deathwalker slightly, and then do random repositioning here and there. Soulhunters then charge the two Bastions that are blocking charges to Avatar of Menoth, and the damage rolls were exceedingly good yet again. Black Ogruns - take a look here how underused models should perform! Oh, don't start that "but we do roll double sixes" talk to me, because that doesn't count if it happens only in Command checks!

Anyway. Light cavalry movement later there is now space for Mechanithralls to charge Avatar. Now looking back I should have taken a free strike with one of the Soulhunters (and possibly set a second one on fire...) to have space for one additional Mechanithrall. But that didn't happen. Only two grunts and a Brute Thrall get to it. And I had already expended my allotment of good rolls, damage done was alarmingly low.

Deathwalker runs close to Eiryss, and then Leviathan comes and shoots her dead. Now Warwitch Siren was able to Power Boost Nightmare, who then charged Feora. Sadly Nightmare wasn't within 4" of the objective, so it had to hit Def 15 with it's Mat 8. Nope. Not today, little one.

Harrower who had been allocated one focus charges Avatar for free, and also Harrower misses. It buys additional attack and breaks Avatar's shield, but otherwise it was fully functional. Damn.

Now. Goreshade did have three focus on him, so either I would start scoring points, too, by running Goreshade to right flag. Other option was to call Nightmare back and leave Feora grinding points from the flag. The damage to Avatar had been so damnably low that I'd lose both Harrower and Leviathan most probably next turn, so if I called Nightmare back with Soul Gate, it'd have a lot on its hands to do after that.

So I decided to leave Nightmare there, next to Feora. Goreshade ran to the flag with three Focus on camp and hoped that there was enough stuff between him and the Avatar.

Turn 4 Protectorate dedicates everything to removing everything that was blocking Avatar. It started to look rather nice, when Bastions showed to Avatar what they had learned from its earlier lesson - that was, nothing. Well, they do break Harrower's movement. Judicator misses rocket volleys really badly, which leaves the Mechanithralls right next to Avatar alive, though they take down either the Skarlock Commander or the actual unit leader model. A spray attack kills both Soulhunters on the right side of Avatar.

Feora casts Engine of Destruction and leaves the flag to advance as far as possible to shoot the last remaining Mechanithrall with her flamethrower. This gives Nightmare a free strike, but since it had done no damage earlier, the eight points it did now was nothing. The Mechanithrall is just out of reach, and I swear I spent fifteen minutes looking at the pictures trying to figure what Feora did to actually kill the thrall? After all 8" range on flamethrower is equal to 8" range of Immolation.

Oh wait. It's not. Immolation is 10" if Hierophant is close enough.

Avatar has free reign then, but it has to survive one free strike by Harrower. Six damage points to column 5 would take out the sword arm. It's only a roll of 9+ with three dice! You can do it, Harrower! Come on!

Screw this undamage-able Avatar. Harrower scores four or five points or something like that, which is enough to fill columns one, two and three. But our Avatar here has Movement boxes even in column four.

It's possible that Avatar slew Goreshade in just one hit. I'm not entirely certain on that, but I guess Goreshade just can't escape Menoth's wrath. Not that Menoth has any particular reason to hate Goreshade, though.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Striking Black Ogruns

This game was played last Tuesday.

It was a 50 point game, and I wanted to give my earlier list another chance. I didn't make any alterations to it at all, because I didn't think my loss last time was because of the list. It was because of reasons.

Goreshade the Bastard
- Nightmare
- Leviathan
- Harrower

Maximum unit of Black Ogruns
Maximum unit of Mechanithralls + Commander + 2x Brute Thralls
Necrosurgeon & Stitch Thralls
Cephalyx Overlords
Warwitch Siren
Necrotech & Scrap Thrall
Saxon Orrik
Gorman diWulfe

Objective: Fuel cache

Opponent had:

Anson Durst
- Judicator
- Sanctifier
- Devout

Minimum unit of Choir of Menoth
Maximum unit of Exemplar Bastions
Maximum unit of Temple Flameguard + Unit Attachment
Vassal of Menoth
Vassal Mechanic

Scenario was Two Fronts, and Cryx started game. First picture is taken from my deployment. My game board is 8" too short, so it means both players need to take 4" off from their deployment. Usually this has been no problem for me, but this time my Mechanithralls, and especially the Necrosurgeon, were literally (un)living on the edge.

First real picture is from the end of Protectorate turn 1.

Turn 2 I want to give Nightmare optimal charge lane to enemy objective for next turn. I couldn't figure any especially good use for Black Ogruns, so they just formed a meat wall between enemy and helljacks. Little did I know what was to come...

Anyway. Mechanithralls on the right advanced to take a beating from Temple Flameguard (profit), or not take a beating from Temple Flameguard (profit). As an added bonus Skarlock Commander landed a solid hit with Dark Fire against the closest Flameguard member.



It's painful to write this turn. Too painful, man.

Judicator advanced and shot every gun it got all over Cryx army, but did rather poorly. Not even one Black Ogrun died even after taking a couple of flamethrower bursts right in the abs. Rest of the Protectorate just walks a bit forward, except for Temple Flameguard. Temple Flameguard charge, and fail to destroy my friendly objective. Nice! A big gathering of fleshy troops whose sacrifice was for nothing. I don't think there were any real casualties for me that turn. Any. Real. Casualties.

Black Ogruns failed their Terror check that was caused by Temple Flameguard.

There. I said it.

I just don't... uh. What to say? I've been giving Black Ogruns quite a lot of board time even if they seem to be the laughingstock of Cryx troop choices. I give them all the love and all the caring they could never expect from anyone else. And this is how they pay it back. I guess they went on a strike for better working conditions or something.

Turn 3 Temple Flameguard are all but destroyed, and THEY succeed in THEIR massive casualties test. Slaughter also triggered Hallowed Avenger on Sanctifier, who charged Nightmare I think. It's also possible that it picked some other target because it looked so close, but the end result was that suddenly in middle of my turn a wild Sanctifier appeared. What was left to activate from me was not enough to destroy the Protectorate heavy warjack or even seriously injure it, so Gorman diWulfe came around and threw some Black Oil over it.

Goreshade cast Shadowmancer (as he had done every turn of the game) and cast Soul Gate to bring Nightmare to safety. Black Ogruns at least succeed in rallying themselves.

Protectorate started to dominate their friendly zone, since removing a couple of Black Ogruns from contesting wasn't a big deal. Temple Flameguard still fails to destroy the objective.

Turn 4 I seem to be unable to think two activations forwards, and that causes a lot of trouble in placement. I have to sacrifice a lot of activations to get rid of one pesky Stitch Thrall who was standing in Nightmare's way. Then Nightmare makes its free charge (from objective) against the Sanctifier, and I guess Harrower and Nightmare and a couple of Black Ogruns were enough to destroy the warjack.

There's not much to tell about the right side of the battle. Mechanithralls died, mechanithralls spawned right back and dealt a little bit of damage here and there to the Bastions.

Bastions got real angry about the tickling they had to endure, and they charged. Two got to charge Nightmare. One of them was within Deathwalker's -2 strength aura. Nightmare was still completely uninjured. First attack dealt fourteen points in. Second attack (with -2 str) dealt fourteen points in. Now everybody can go and count how many damage boxes a Slayer chassis warjack has. Or you can just look at the picture.

My objective is finally slain.

Turn 5 it looks like game is over unless I figure something to win instead. And my plan was to kill Deathwalker, charge in with Goreshade and make her anew from an Exemplar Bastion, run her as close to Anson as possible, use feat and charge Anson with Bane Thralls.

Well. I wasted a lot of time in planning around that Deathwalker thing. But I killed her by running her out of Goreshade's command range. Lots of shenanigans later Goreshade does succeed in bringing her back. That's the moment when I remember that she has already activated. Pro play right here.

Only three Bane Thralls get to charge Anson Durst. With -2 Def it might have been possible, and it still was if all Banes rolled 7+ to hit.

First Bane Thrall hit Anson and dealt something like eight damage points in. That triggered Retaliatory Strike from Anson, which hit and destroyed the Bane Thrall. Eruption of Ash caused the second Bane in line to suffer POW 12 damage roll, so suddenly I got only one Bane Thrall remaining for attacks. Well. He didn't do it.

And Protectorate had four scenario points. So Protectorate would win outright if they destroyed two Bane Thralls and one Black Ogrun from the zone. There was also a focusless Goreshade out there in the open, but scenario victory it was.

And now I'm going to have a stern talking-to to my Black Ogruns.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Rock in gore

Last Friday I played a 50 point game of Warmachine.

Seems like I just haven't had enough of Black Ogruns yet. Just wait until I include them with Mortenebra.

But that wasn't what I did last Friday. My list:

Goreshade the Bastard
- Nightmare
- Leviathan
- Harrower

Maximum unit of Black Ogruns
Maximum unit of Mechanithralls + Commander + 2x Brute Thralls
Necrosurgeon & Stitch Thralls
Cephalyx Overlords
Warwitch Siren
Necrotech & Scrap Thrall
Saxon Orrik
Gorman diWulfe

Objective: Fuel depot

Opponent had (to my delight):

Anson Durst
- Reckoner
- Templar
- Devout

Minimum unit of Choir of Menoth
Maximum unit of Exemplar Bastions
Maximum unit of Temple Flameguard + Unit Attachment
Aiyana & Holt
Vassal of Menoth
Vassal Mechanic
Epic Eiryss
Gorman diWulfe

Scenario was Recon and Protectorate started. First picture is from the end of Cryx turn 1. So far Saxon Orrik has run to engage Eiryss in combat, and Nightmare has been poorly positioned right next to objective.

Turn 2 Temple Flameguard advance cautiously and use their minifeat. Aiyana & Holt and Reckoner shot off a Black Ogrun, and Eiryss missed Saxon.

Goreshade allocated one Focus to Nightmare, and then Nightmare used a free charge from Fuel Depot to go and wreck enemy objective. Well, as I had placed it in base contact with the objective, it couldn't align itself to charge directly towards the enemy objective. It missed its mark by about a quarter of an inch - half inch.

Leviathan shot a bit of damage to the objective - probably three if the die is a reminder of that. Saxon Orrik scores a lucky hit against Eiryss and kills her outright. Emboldened by this, Mechanithralls run to overwhelm their flank. Goreshade casts Shadowmancer less surprisingly, and calls Nightmare back from it's failed charge. Black Ogruns just screened.

Turn 3 is Ansons feat turn, and Protectorate turtles up, slowly delivering the warjacks forward. But that didn't seem too bad. I'd be able to re-make Nightmares fail charges for all eternity and just call it back. That ought to have some impact on the enemy heavies.

Cryx turn I, as a Cryx player, shoot a target very dead with real ranged weaponry. I'm not kidding anyone. Leviathan gets a real high damage roll against objective, and then Black Ogruns advance to make a combined ranged attack against it. Wow. Scenario game started to look pretty good option here.

Harrower charges some Flameguards, and kills two of them. Cephalyx Overseers sprayed twice on Aiyana & Holt, and one of the attacks succeeded in removing the real target - Aiyana.

Saxon Orrik gives pathfinder for Mechanithralls, who then charge and run to engage enemy models. No big surprises there. They even killed one Flameguard.

Goreshade activates and casts Shadowmancer and Soul Gate to move Harrower to the woods. I don't know what on earth caused me to make such a fatal move. I could have easily moved farther to the right, but no. Goreshade just HAD to make some sort of a "here I am, you can't catch me and I'm all kinds of invulnerable if you do! You know why? Because I got BLACK OGRUNS in front of me!" show. After all, even if middle zone had been an important place for Goreshade to be I could have always measured control area so as not to place Goreshade inside Ansons personal threat range.

that blunder is even worse if you think how I also failed to remember opponent had Boundless Charge.

Ah well.

Turn 4 opponent just has to remove two Black Ogruns which, sadly, isn't a very difficult thing to do. Then Anson charged focusless Goreshade. Deathwalker gave me a tiny hope if opponent would just miss a couple of attacks. But even Deathwalker with her -2 str aura and the "heal one point once you die" thing was not enough to save me from placing Goreshade poorly.

Damn. Otherwise I think I would have had a pretty strong game.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Gorman oiling tall, muscular pirates

Last Thursday I played a 35 point game of Warmachine.

By then I knew for sure that I wouldn't be playing in an upcoming tournament that weekend, so I really didn't know what to play.

And because I didn't know what to play, I wanted to test Black Ogruns yet again. I didn't feel that bad for picking Wraith Witch Deneghra because after all opponent would be going to a tournament... it would be essential practice for him. And I got the Black Ogrun there.

Then we unpacked our models and I noticed that I had no need to feel guilty about my warcaster of choice. I was against Haley2. Uh oh. That came as a real surprise as I had thought this player had sold all of his Cygnar.

... and my GPU from my older laptop just wrecked itself. That means this write-up has to be endured without pictures, since they were on the old computer and of course I have already cleaned camera's memory card.

My list:

Wraith Witch Deneghra
- 2x Nightwretch

Maximum unit of Black Ogruns
Minimum unit of Bile Thralls
Aiakos, Scourge of Meredius
- Leviathan
Pistol Wraith
Ogrun Bokur (client Deneghra)
Warwitch Siren

Opponent had:

Haley2 the Haley2
- Stormclad (bonded)

Maximum unit of Horgenhold Forge Guard
Arcane Tempest Gun Mage Pistoleers + Officer
Black 13th
Journeyman Warcaster
Gorman diWulfe

Scenario was Close Quarters and Cygnar started game. There was a hill and a forest in the cryx half of the table, and a crater and linear obstacles over there at Cygnar. Stormclad advanced in front of the whole Cygnar army. I was afraid of it's threat range, so I tried to advance in a huge blob of models. If it dared to charge in, it'd have to deal with the remainder of my forces.

Turn 2 Stormclad charged with the aid of Haley's bond and Temporal Acceleration. It somehow manages to miss two of it's attacks, and that leaves Leviathan alive with about four damage boxes remaining. Only fully functional system was movement system. Eiryss ran to my friendly flag, right next to a nightwretch.

Though I wanted to save Deneghra's feat for later, I used it on turn 2. First Deneghra goes incorporeal, walks in the forest to attack Stormclad and hopes for 11+ on damage. Just one point would be enough to trigger Dark Banishment. But no... first attack is a fail. She buys a new one, because feat or no, Deneghra cannot leave a heavy warjack standing right next to her! Second attack scores the required damage, and Stormclad is moved up to mid field.

Nightwretch takes aiming bonus and tries to shoot Stormclad. At the start of my turn I remembered to NOT take aiming bonus and move it from the way of Ogrun Bokur instead. When it came time to activate the bonejack, I guess I just vaguely remembered something about an aiming bonus... oh well. Now Ogrun Bokur wouldn't be able to charge Eiryss, but at least he could walk to take a swing at her. Miss, obviously.

Skarlock casts Curse of Shadows to Stormclad, and then four Black Ogruns charge the cygnaran heavy. There were three non-existent damage rolls, and one really good.

Then Bile Thralls come to spray at Stormclad, but they don't do much. At least they hit. Lastly Pistol Wraith shot Death Chill to Stormclad.

A bonejack, two solos, two units and a warcaster hadn't done enough damage to make Stormclad easy to finish for Aiakos, so instead he advanced and jumped to Eiryss.

Turn 3 Haley uses her feat. She also teleports Gorman a bit forward, so it can lob Blind Oil at Stormclad. Now all of my Black Ogruns were blind... oh joy. But seriously. Let's count up all the debuffs here. Stormclad had Curse of Shadows, Death Chill, Black Oil and Deneghra's feat, and the Black Ogruns got Haley's feat and Black Oil. That was a huge pile of "nobody does anything."

Black 13th shoots Deneghra down to some five boxes remaining or something.

My turn Deneghra advances deeper into forest, hopefully to block Line of Sight to her. With rest of my models I do nothing, except with Ogrun Bokur, who lands the killing blow to Stormclad.

Then game devolved into some sort of cat & mouse play, where Deneghra was the mouse this time. Damage was impressive against both teams, though only models that really did any damage to enemy were the Bile Thralls. They took off quite a chunk of enemy infantry.

Haley started grinding control points from her friendly flag... and that was it. There wasn't much I was able to do - when your warcaster has five or so damage boxes, even with full camp those few remaining Horgenhold Forge Guards look quite oppressive.

I have to confess I turned on my broken laptop in safe mode just to look at the pictures. I couldn't remember anything from this game otherwise.