Monday, May 30, 2016

From the Desk: Weekend Roundup #124

Late/early update since Memorial Day weekend makes this weird.

So as you can see, the Sacral Vault is nearly completed. I got it all painted, assembled, and sealed. I poured the Envirotex today which will need at least a couple days to dry. This project has been a real beast and it's definitely not my best work, and admittedly I've reached a point of just wanting to be done. Getting the Envirotex poured is a good pausing point, after which I can go back and do touch ups if I feel so inclined.

So, now that this project is nearly done, I find myself in an odd position. I've completed all the models for what I would consider my active factions, and I don't have anything on deck at this point. So either I lure myself to my FLGS and buy something new or I start my Cephalyx. Although it's very tempting to go pick up the new Proteus sculpt, I'm going to behave myself for now and start sorting through the Cephalyx all-in-one box that I got and deciding how to tackle it. There's a bunch of things I need to decide, like whether to continue with the existing basing scheme I already had for my Cryx, or go with a new scheme. Part of that is dependent on how Cephalyx are categorized in Mk3 I guess. So many things to sort out when starting a new army.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Battle Report: Sturgis vs Syntherion

So very close, yet so far.

My list: Sturgis, Squire, Stormwall, Jakes, Dynamo, Stormblades (6+UA+3WA), Stormblade Captain, Stormsmith, Tarin, Aiyana & Holt, Harlan, Effigy of Valor Objective.

My opponent: Syntherion (tier 4), Corollary, Axiom, Mitigator, 2 Diffusers, Galvanizer, 2 Emergence Projectors, 2 Dispersion Optifexes, 3 Attunement Servitors, Optifex Directive, Bunker Objective.

Scenario: Recon, 60 minute death clock.

Honestly, I can't remember a lot of details of this game. I ended up going second and choosing the side with the bunker. My Stormwall got Magnetic Held. Aiyana failed to drop harm on one of the battle engines, and from there some more failed dice rolls meant I only took out 1 of the two of them on my second turn which resulted in some badness. There was other badness, but generally what it came down to was getting slightly outplayed and being behind on scenario so I went for an assassination run on Synth who was camping 5 focus. Long story short, I failed, but more analysis on the actual attempt below.

Lessons learned: I'm going to lose gloriously in Masters. I'm just hoping for a set of fun opponents.
Also thinking I should swap out the Stormsmith and Harlan for Eiryss2. I'll try that next time.

Games this year: 24

Overpower vs Drop-5-Damage
Ok, so on this assassination run, I was curious about the about the math on this, so I'm going to try it out here, comparing old Overpower vs new drop-5-damage mechanisms.

Sturgis made a last ditch assassination attempt on Synth, who was camping 5 focus. He was def 13, arm 18 base. I won't replay the attack rolls for hit/miss based on average dice, and just assume it stays as the same hit rates. I'll also assume Synth still had his 3 damage from Feedback that Sturgis had put on him previously, so he was down to 17 damage remaining. I will however assume average damage rolls rather than trying to recall exactly what I rolled last night.

Stormwall, 1 boosted Big Gun hit at POW 15, 1 boosted Metal Storm hit at POW 12.
Sturgis' feat, boosted POW 12.
Harlan's quad iron, with 4 boosted POW 10s
Stormblade Captain charge attack, boosted weapon master POW 13

Overpower scenario (what played out last night), with Synth at ARM 23:
Stormwall does 2.5 and 0.
Sturgis does 0.
Harlan does 0, 0, 0 and 0.
Stormblade Captain does 4.
So a total of 6.5 damage on average. In recollection, I had spike rolls in both directions which pushed the damage up, but still not even close to a win.

New drop-5-damage scenario, with Synth at ARM 18.
Stormwall does 7.5 and 4.5.
Sturgis does 4.5.
Harlan does 2.5, 2.5, 2.5 and 2.5.
Stormblade Captain does 9.
Let's assume Synth optimizes and pays to drop from the largest ones, that eliminates the 2 4.5s, and 1 2.5 entirely. It also drop 5 from the 9, and 5 from the 7.5. This comes out to a total of: 2.5, 2.5, 2.5, 2.5 and 4, for a grand total of 14.

So Synth lives, assuming average dice and perfect drops, Synth lives, but I can only imagine the brain twisting process as dice spike one way or another and having to guess when to try and drop or not.

All things considered, I dig this change.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Countdown to LnL2016: 2 Weeks

2 weeks! Crazy!

Scott's Pro Tips (this week) for packing:
Bring spare card sleeves for Mk3 cards.
Bring a water bottle to refill at the fountain there.

Travel - Check. Car serviced.
Hotel - check
Food - Check. Snacks and drinks loaded in my car.
Model transport - Check. Got 2 tool boxes and a cookie sheet. And an additional storage tray thanks to my buddy Lance!
Shopping - check
Gaming equipment - check
Tokens - check
Repair kit - check

Masters - Check. Registered! Lists finalized.
Unbound - Check. Finalized my list.
2nd Unbound - check

At this point I mostly just need to pack. I'm trying to get a couple more practice games in prior to going, but otherwise everything has come together.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Battle Report: Sturgis vs Skarre2

No picture this time.

My list: Sturgis, Squire, Stormwall, Jakes, Dynamo, Stormblades (6+UA+3WA), Stormblade Captain, Stormsmith, Tarin, Aiyana & Holt, Harlan, Effigy of Valor Objective.

My opponent: Skarre2, Skarlock, Deathjack, Nightwretch, Aiakos, Sepulcher, Bane Riders (5), Mobeus, 2 Bloat Thralls, Necrotech, 1 Scrap Thrall, Effigy of Valor Objective.

Scenario: Destruction, 60 minute death clock.

I lost initiative which let me pick sides. Cryx jammed in, and I advanced a cautious amount. The Bloat Thralls, thanks to Black Spot, managed to do a real number on my Stormblades which was really devastating. From there the Bane Riders formed a line at the front edge of the zone and Skarre feated to make 3 of them immune, along with the DJ and herself. In order to try to dig my way out of this roadblock, Aiyana put harm on one of the Bane Riders (thus affecting the whole unit), and then Holt and Jakes shot one off the end. Sturgis then charged the other non-immune one, putting himself within 3 of the other 3 in the unit. After killing the 2nd one, he feated and was able to boost damages on the others. Unfortunately at effective POW 14 vs ARM 20 and 5 wounds, Sturgis needed 11's to kill and managed to roll 3 10's in a row, leaving all 3 with 1 HP left. He then teleported back and from there it was mostly an attempt to jam. The Stormwall advanced and used a Stormpod drop to clear one of the wounded Bane Riders and leave metal storm templates on top of those Bane Riders and force movement. At this point my remaining Stormblades just tried to get in the way. It was at this point that things went south. Skarre loaded up the DJ, used Perdition to kill a Stormblade and grant a full advance to the DJ, who then could walk over to Sturgis and proceeded to punch him down to pulp.

Lessons learned: I still love playing Sturgis. He's such a fun toolbox for my play style. Also, Perdition is totally a thing to watch out for. Plus, I really don't enjoy playing against Skarre2, but I feel like I nearly weathered this one well if it wasn't for a couple position errors.

Games this year: 23

Monday, May 23, 2016

From the Desk: Weekend Roundup #123

Late update. Another boring week.

More progress on the Vault. I was traveling for work again this week, and generally had a very hectic week due to family stuff. So the progress isn't amazing, but it's getting there.

Paint Target: Complete All Models
Sacral Vault - painting

Sunday, May 15, 2016

From the Desk: Weekend Roundup #122

Boring week to report on.

I'm posting this early since I'm hoping to get a game in later tonight. Lots of work on the Sacral Vault this week. All three gators for it are done, along with the base. The vault itself is in progress, as pictured here. Hoping to crank this sucker out over the next week.

On another note, I still haven't locked in lists for LnL.

Paint Target: Complete All Models
Sacral Vault - painting

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Battle Report: Stryker3 vs Skarre2

This battle should be named "Oh how I can't wait for Mk3".

My list: Stryker3 (tier 4), Stormwall, Ol Rowdy, Storm Lances (5), Tempest Blazers (5), Laddermore, Stormblade Captain, Effigy of Valor Objective.

My opponent: Skarre2, Skarlock, Deathjack, Nightwretch, Aiakos, Sepulcher, Warwitch Siren, Bane Riders (5), Blood Witches (6+UA), Effigy of Valor Objective.

Scenario: Incomming, 60 minute death clock.

I won initiative and opted to go first. I immediately jammed forward about as far as I could, especially with the Stormwall. At the end of my turn though, I realized I had left Stryker directly behind my own objective which was going to cause movement problems on the next turn. My opponent then spent a considerable amount of time mulling over how to respond to a serious jam. His response was pretty well done actually. He managed to get Black Spot on my Blazers which allowed him to shoot 4 of them off the table between Skarre and the Sepulcher. From there things got nasty for us both. I ended up jamming in the Stormwall but a Deathjack/Sepulcher counterattack destroyed it. At this point things were pretty desperate with Skarre toe'ing into both a forest and the Stormwall's wreck. My options kept getting more and more narrow, but I did my best to stay in the fight and attrition him down where I could. In the end he managed to dominate his friendly zone and take out my objective to score enough points, with less than a minute on his clock I might add. Well done Henry!

Lessons learned: Stryker3 is still fun. It's not a particularly amazing list, but I'm feeling better and better about it. This might be one of my Masters' lists now.
On a side note, there was a bunch of stuff in this game that makes me look forward to Mk3. First is the wreck stuff. Second, and more importantly, I had 2 failed command checks in this game (once on Blazers near the start, and second on Storm Lances late game).

Games this year: 22

Friday, May 13, 2016

Countdown to LnL2016: 4 Weeks

Only 4 weeks left! So excited!!

Travel - Vehicle service scheduled for this coming Monday.
Hotel - check
Food - I need to make sure I have a plan for bringing snacks and drinks with me, especially for Unbound.
Model transport - Got 2 tool boxes and a cookie sheet. Still need some additional storage.
Shopping - check
Gaming equipment - check
Tokens - check
Repair kit - check

Masters - Registered! Need to finalize lists, and ADR (if applicable).
Unbound - Need to finalize a list.
2nd Unbound - check

Remaining Paint Queue: nothing!

As a last note, I took a picture of my entire Cygnar collection which I plan to bring to LnL for random games. I'm also hoping that my tweet of it will help secure my Unbound game being against Jason Soles finally this year.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

From the Desk: Painting Videos

If you're relatively new to painting, go watch these for education.

If you've been painting a long time, go watch these for amusement.

SDUB's Paint More Minis videos

Sunday, May 08, 2016

From the Desk: Weekend Roundup #121

Pitiful roundup, but doing it anyway.

Finished Ragman and got started on the Vault. Not a lot of progress though due to work craziness, playing, stress, and general tiredness. Hopefully this week will be more productive.

On another note, I really need to lock in Masters lists and a plan for Unbound as well.

Paint Target: Complete All Models
Sacral Vault - painting

Friday, May 06, 2016

Battle Report: Stryker2 vs Morghoul1

Breaking through Master practice fatigue with something different.

My list: Stryker3 (tier 4), Stormwall, Ol Rowdy, Storm Lances (5), Tempest Blazers (5), Laddermore, Stormblade Captain.

My opponent: Morghoul, Marketh, Krea, Karn, Bronzeback, Gladiator, Reptile Hound, Shaman, Agonizer, Willbreaker, Beast Handlers (4), Nihilators (10).

Scenario: Close Quarters, 60 minute death clock.

I won initiative and opted to go first. My list makes for some crazytown jamming. With the tier bonus, I had the Stormwall 1" off the centerline at the end of my first turn, with everything else very close to the centerline as well. From there though things got tricky. Nihilators made tough rolls all over the place and a couple of key ones blocked my ability to really get work done with the Stormwall. There was also a key forest that Karn and Morghoul were able to hide behind that kept my Storm Lances from really delivering the hurt. I very much ended up running out of time and clocking myself due to a number of factors, not the least of which was some environmental distractions in my house. However a lot of it was just unfamiliarity with playing heavy cavalry enough and trying to sequence Stryker3's feat and the rest of his army. We played past the clock and in the end I was able to attrition him down and eventually kill Morghoul, but I'm still marking this one down as a loss on time because I was just horrifically slow.

Lessons learned: Stryker3 is both fun, and kinda one dimensional. I definitely feel like some added practice with this particular list could be much more fun. I made a number of positioning and execution mistakes throughout the game that more practice would help with. I also feel like an important less was playing against Karn again, which is something that I routinely get surprised by.

On a side note, with all of the Mk3 spoilers getting out there, it was interesting to play this game. Specifically there were a bunch of places during the game where we found ourselves saying "man, this will be so much better in Mk3 when..." and citing some change. From things like pre-measuring, to forests, to just crazy stuff like the Agonizer. I really can't wait for Mk3 to roll out!

Games this year: 21

Wednesday, May 04, 2016


Super fast speed paint job while watching shows on Netflix streaming. Nothing amazing. Just another one closed out.

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Lord General Coleman Stryker

Such an awesome model! So dynamic! Really enjoyed this one. I could have let myself get lost in details. The big challenge I had with this model actually was the rock wall which didn't fit with my basing theme for Cygnar. After much consternation over what to do with it, I chopped it down in size and green stuffed it into something resembling a small wall that fit the basing theme. I do however suck at green stuff work and so it really looks like a slab of melted-then-solidified metal rather than a machined well. However keeping it did provide an important anchor for the model to the base which makes the entire thing remarkably solid. I feel compelled to get this incarnation of Stryker on the table at least once before Mk3 hits.

Monday, May 02, 2016

Trench Buster

Surprises me that he doesn't have Shield Guard given his massive shield. This model really is a brute of a model, towering over most 30mm infantry.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

From the Desk: Weekend Roundup #120

Sometimes my work affords some awesomeness...

This last week I was traveling for work (again), but this time to Seattle and happened to have the option to stay in downtown Bellevue. So of course I afforded myself a morning walk and went past the convention center where Lock & Load is going to be held. Pointless? Perhaps. Energizing? Definitely.

So this was a great week for hobby work, despite the work travel. I finished up Stryker3, got started on Ragman, and re-based Aiyana & Holt.

I also catalogued my remaining prepared Tau Ceti bases for Cygnar: 1 huge, 2 large, 1 medium, 9 small. It tempts me to buy more Cygnar, but certainly not until I finish my remaining models.

So after 1/3 of the year is over, I thought I might take a look at my goals for the year and where I stand with a few of them:
2) Close out DZC - Done! It felt great to wrap this one up early, even if I haven't played a lick of DZC lately.
3) Get Cygnar to 95% painted - Done! In fact it's completely painted. Aw yeah!
4) Play 52 games - 20 games so far, so I'm tracking well. My win-loss ratio is terrible, but I'm having a great time.
7) Play tighter games - Great progress. Between always using the clock and trying to be very tight about measuring, I feel great about this one as being "done".
8) Pack away old models - Trolls and Menoth got packed away. I think I'm going to have to pack away Cryx as well though given the lack of space in my display case.
9) Archive selected models - Done! That was such a wonderful cathartic exercise. I think I've got less than 10 models packed away right now as "inactive". There's a Cephalyx box that's sort of in a limbo state too, but I'll sort that out later.

Paint Target: Complete All Models
Ragman - painting
Sacral Vault - assembled