Sunday, July 19, 2009

2nd To Last Place

Another 500pt Steamroller 4 tournament come and gone. Hats off to our local unofficial press ganger Marco for putting it together.

My list: Thagrosh, Carnivean, Raek, Shredder, Shepherd, Deathstalker, Striders+UA, Totem Hunter, Swamp Gobbers

Round 1: Krueger, Gnarlhorn, Gorax, Druids, Wayfarer, Shifting Stones, Sentry Stone, Dhalia & Skarath.
This first battle was a blast. The mission was to control 3 of 6 zones (2 of own and 1 of opponent's). The battle was pretty vicious, with me taking advantage of the forest in the middle. The Striders dealt with the Druids fairly well, but Krueger's feat was murder on them. The Manikins were annoyingly good in this game too, actually taking out the Deathstalker on the first round. The endgame was fun. Krueger was positioned back behind a Shifting Stone, with the Wayfarer and Gnarlhorn guarding the way around to him. I set up a 4 part assault. First my Raek advanced and lept up behind the Wayfarer, blocking a key counter-charge lane for the Gnarlhorn. Due to some poor dice rolls the Wayfarer lived, but it was unimportant. Next the Carnivean did an assault charge on the Shifting Stone in front of Krueger, ending too far for melee but destroying the stone. Unfortunately the Carnivean did not hit Krueger though due to his Wind Storm. Next I used some careful positioning to get the remaining Striders into a CRA against Krueger, laying some damage onto him. (Important tactical tip: Having the officer on a hill to lead the CRA was very valuable, granting the elevation bonus to the whole CRA) Finally, with 10 points of damage left to do, and no fury on Krueger, Thagrosh charged the Wayfarer to get into position to target Krueger with Obliteration. I cast, I hit, and then the boosted damage roll resulted in a 7 (3+3+1), for a total of 22. Fail! Krueger had 2 damage left and Thagrosh was completely out of Fury. At that point my opponent won not only on caster kill but on scenario as well.

Round 2: Magnus, 2 Renegades, Mariner, Dougal, Orin, Nyss Hunters (10).
The mission was mosh pit, which I can honestly say didn't play into the battle much at all. Again, another vicious fight, with the Striders getting crushed by the Nyss template and then failing their break check. It wasn't until afterwards that I found out my opponent was wrong about shallow water (his claim was that it granted concealment, which it doesn't). I've made a mental note to call that particular player out on any rules I don't know for sure in the future. He was also rather sloppy on his measurements which I had to call him on a couple times. If I'd been in the winners bracket, I probably would have been much more strict with him, but I hate being a anal during a game and appearing like a jerk. Anyway, once again I got an assassination run in. Magnus (with no focus remaining) had used his feat to pull back, hide behind Dougal and a Renegade, and engage the Totem Hunter and Raek with the Mariner. The Carnivean was knocked down, preventing my favorite assault charge move as well. First, the Deathstalker stepped around the Nyss and laid a couple shots on Magnus, scoring a couple points of damage. Next, the Totem Hunter bravely walked out of melee with the Mariner. Now in all honesty, I got a bit lucky here. The Mariner had Frenzy on it, so it only needed a 5 to hit the Totem Hunter. Fortunately it missed, and he walked around, lept, and pounded Magnus futher. The Carnivean stood up and killed one of 3 Nyss engaging Thagrosh, with the Shepherd killing another. Then Thagrosh walks out of melee (taking some unimportant damage from the remaining Nyss), blasts Dougal with Mutagenesis and killing him, at which point he was sitting right on top of Magnus with 3 fury left. MAT 7, POW 16 vs DEF 14, ARM 17 and 12 damage left. On average dice rolls, just buying unboosted attacks with fury, I would have hit 2 out of 3 times, scoring 12 points of damage. Again though, my dice didn't come through for me. I scored 2 hits, but only scored 10 points of damage. I promptly forfeited at that point.

Round 3: Shae, Mariner, Commodore, Meg, Aiyana & Holt, Doc, Walls, Grogspar, Hawk, Rockbottom, 10 Sea Dogs.
The mission was ridge runners. My opponent was Marco the tournament organizer so he put us on the table with the desert terrain so that he could claim to be defending his beach, which was extra amusing. This game was a brutal fight. The ridge really saved my bacon, preventing the Commodore from getting many shots. In the end I pulled out another assassination run. First the Totem Hunter got a clear run at Shae and laid in some damage on a lucky attack roll. Next the Raek advanced and lept around to get on Shae and get 1 good hit in. Finally, after a little jiggery-pokery with Thagrosh (who was engaged by Grogspar and couldn't afford the risk of a free strike cause of Heave Ho), I managed to close just enough to get an Obliteration shot on the Mariner which was standing next to Shae. After boosting the blast damage, Shae went down like the pirate scum he is. Now, that being said, Marco's dice had betrayed him multiple times during this battle. He clearly was outplaying me and just got unlucky on some key dice rolls. However, every the good sport, we played it out. One of the most amusing moments of the game however was when the Commodore rolls up onto the ridge as a result of Shae's feat, turns towards the Carnivean and blasts the poor beast backwards into the Shredder and Shepherd in a marvelously comical maneuver.

So, in the end I got 2nd to last, which I can't complain about. In all three games I managed to organize a viable assassination run with Thagrosh, which was one of my two goals for the tournament (the other being show up with fully painted Legion). Assassination is not my strong suit, and playing Legion now means I need to sharpen those skills dramatically if I want to feel competent with them.

Later that evening I played a 4th game against my buddy Mike from out of town. He rolled in with Calandra, Impaler, Axer, Slag, 6 Kriel Warriors with UA, Fell Caller, and 3 Longriders. I opted to play Cryx to get a break from Legion and brought Deneghra, Nightmare, 8 Bane Thralls, 9 Revenants, Rengrave, Skarlock and Pistol Wraith. I abused poor Mike, and I sort of feel dirty about it. Now, in my defense, Calandra is a pain in the ass. Star Crossed is just crazy. It turned my already sad Revenants into even more pathetic lumps of soggy deck scum. However, after some flopping around at the beginning, I hit my stride. Despite a lack of an arcnode, I got Crippling Grasp on the Longriders, and on my feat round did a pile of shooting, slicing and regrouping. Now, I'd love to say that in the end I pulled out some elegant No-Quarter-Challenge style win, but the truth is this: I didn't win, Mike lost. Due to an unlucky threshold roll, the Slag Troll frenzied right next to Calandra and wailed on her. She didn't die immediately, but with 1 damage left and no beasts to transfer to (the Axer was dead and the Impaler also frenzied) it pretty much flushed the game unfortunately. Despite being rather one-sided, it was fun to roll out my Cryx again after having spent time to paint them and then promptly move on to Legion.

Anyway, this is probably a record setting post for length for me, so I'll wrap this up. This was a fun weekend and overall I had a great time. It helps that I didn't ever have ridiculously bad luck with dice in any given game. And I can also claim my status as a faction whore now, having played 5 different factions in tournament play (Menoth, Cryx, Mercs, Trolls and Legion).


John said...

Great write up mate :) Tournaments are fun aren't they

Deacis said...

Damn, you really had some bad luck!