So here I am, just having won my very first tournament. While I was super excited, I tried to be extremely humble. I didnt want to take away from today’s hard fought battles that people participated in.
This was a major turn around, for me. Lately I havnt been able to practice and when I did it seemed as I had forgotten what my models did and I was regressing with my knowledge of the game…
For this Report….first off, I want you to know that I have in TOTAL played this faction less times than I have fingers & toes. Im six months into this hobby (no previous relative experience,) and in total have yet to play a total of 100 games (yet who the heck is counting!?) So that sorta gives you an idea for the mistakes and cringe worthy content coming up, nice and warm!
So I decided to start some battle reports. Mostly to help me as an individual as Im hoping to try and learn what other casters and models do outside my own (which I still struggle to remember what does what.) The following is literally a newbie trying to learn and you’ll understand as you read it, hah. Okay, okay…in advance THANK YOU for taking the time to visit and poke around. If you have any constructive criticism or want to correct something PLEASE reach out! Otherwise leave a comment and let me know what you liked! On with the show….er…ya, the reports!
Crazy Squirrel Game Store of Fresno, CA is home to my local meta & today’s (10.14.17) Monthly Steamroller.
Starting off with the Dreamer, this is inspired by the thoughts and well refined battle reports being produced by a certain individual out in the Grymkin/Warmachine community. He that shall not be named (because I dont have his consent, and respect him) provides some amazing information and content! Seriously, if you dont know who im talking about just search for Grymkin Battle reports on google! Getting back to it, I like the idea of two potential Arcane Vortexes & Arc Nodes with some serious beef to transfer to if I get myself in a bad situation. Armor 21 near a Death Knell is nothing to snicker at, either. With the introduction of SR 2017, having flexibility for scenario is a good key to success! I feel the two units of Dread Rots can buy time, contest well, or jam/screen flanks and help force the attention of opponent elsewhere. The sisters are a neat little unit and RFP aside can help a tar pit, well…keep on taring things up with Grim Returns or a few little cheeky things with death rattle/heal! P.S. Dreamers spell list is also clutch….when/if you remember to use them…. (OH! Who DOESNT love those cute and cuddly Phantasms!? I guess I didnt…forgot to place even one the entire event!)
The Child list is pretty cut and dry. Heavy on the beasts, and something I would drop if I faced a Jack/Beast heavy option I felt id play against. I like having five free solos plus the min unit of Dread Rots to assist in corpse generation and the occasional distraction/jamming. I knew this would be a niche list going into a meta that traditionally loves Beasts/Jacks/Colossal’s so it was there just for that.
Playing double Dark Menagerie I felt it could be a really bad idea, yet with the units that Dreamer has accompanying her, it helped soothe some concerns I had about being able to deal with Unit Spam/Ambush.
Game One: Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall…
My Opponent for the First round is Luis. We helped introduce each other to our very first Faction Mirror Match! I dont know why, but I was terrified of this matchup. Not in the sense of wanting avoid it, but more along the line of him knowing exactly what I might want to do on any given turn. First off, Luis’s army puts mine to shame. You may have seen his gorgeously painted models online already, and if you havnt…these photos will not do them justice!
We select our lists. I want to give Dreamer a go and like the help of the units to screen my heavies, need be. Luis introduces me to his Heretic list in Dark Menagerie. I feel a little weight off my chest as I believe I can handle things a little better with it, compared to the Child’s List.
P.S. Note, I made a very major mistake that is 100% cringe-worthy and we were able to resolve. So if you spot it early on, itll be addressed further down below. Also, CP counting is very unclear as I didn’t document it properly for the report, so dont get hung up on the math too much.
Team Heretic goes first. Standard issue of running all the things up takes place. Fury is lobbed on a Skin & Moans and he adds a wall of fire near the would be path of my Dread Rots for good measure. Pass Turn.
I Run everything up carefully measuring the threat ranges of his Skin & Moans. I place Mirage on one of my Skin & Moans hoping he can benefit from this extension next turn. Im nervous and want to remove one of his beasts quickly, as he has five, to my four. I also decide to place an Artifice of Deviation in front of his beasts on the hill, to hopefully have the added rough terrain benefit me as we approach each other.
He decides to avoid the rough terrain, and place his models in the clearings around it. He places one of his Skin & Moans (S&M) 10 inches away from my most forward S&M which at this point does have Mirage. At this point we point out the annoying contesting game the Gremlins are going to play throughout this matchup if they do nothing else. Wraithbane is put on a gorehound which approaches the Gremlin in the forest. After boosting to hit, it remains in play with one health. Pass Turn.
The first order of business to upkeep Mirage. This is when my opponent realizes (as well as I,) that I can get the alpha. I make the decision to do so, although I cannot enrage him due to Karianna being boxed in too far. Unboxing her might (actually will,) trigger Labyrinth, making things more difficult for me. I Send in Skin & Moans and unfortunately leave him on two boxes after missing one of my purchased attacks. Farewell my sweet prince! (To be fair, at this point im okay with losing him, as now its a distraction piece.) Labyrinth is activated to prevent me from pushing up the line any further than it needs to be. I shuffle things around as much as I could. I decide to make a bold move…
I run my ‘little Gremlin Swam that could’ (the one with one health left,) deep into the backfield but close enough to contest his flag. My Dread Rots clutter the middle up in hopes of preventing his beasts from reaching potential high value targets. Additionally I run to jam his Gorehound that was approaching deep on my left. His neatly painted Gremlin nearby is approached by my Cage Rager. A this point I activate Dreamer to Arc a boosted Abyssal Gate into it. I boost for damage (totally forgetting at this point about future sight, although remember later this match.) I walk her up and she goes to the dark side, via incorporeal..sitting on zero camp. Passing turn, CP goes 2-0 in my favor.
He shuffles around trying to kill my Gremlin in the backfield after he successfully passes a threshold check. We both dont realize that the Cage Rages come equipped with magical weapons and so it takes both ragers to finally remove the hard to hit Gremlin. (This was a bold move that paid off as it distracted two heavies.) We make some adjustments to fury once this (magical weapons) is noticed and move on. The Gorehound on my right charges my Crabbit and is able to disable it. Around this time I realize im winning by a significant amount on the ‘deathclock race’ (im ahead of him by 12~ minutes.) I decide that this might be the best time to pop ‘All fall down,’ and do so knocking down the “too close for comfort,” Gorehound. ***I ask if I can pause the clock. I notice ive made an embarrassing and grave mistake. I point out ive been playing up an extra Skin & Moans, as I confused having three on the field, with my Child List. I tell him that Id like to concede unless he believes the one behind the house (that has just sat there,) has not had any impact or influence on the game. If so, with his agreement we can remove it and continue. Luis tells me that up until this point it has had no influence and is fine with it being removed so we can continue this rather exciting (for us,) matchup. I probably apologize another half a dozen times and we un-pause*** Dread Rots clutter the middle. He wants to draw the line, and advances a Skin & Moans to collect some corpses before it falls down to my arcana. The battered Skin and Moans heals to a fully operational state and kindly ejects my Skin & moans from the game. He falls down, too post this ejection. Pass Turn. CP rises to 3-2.
I really dont want that bruised up Skin & Moans of his to heal by killing off his over-extended (and knocked down,) S&M first. I can only commit a Cage Rager to that one, but with it being knocked down I feel like I can do it. My S&M charges his battered one, and im able to take its corpse during its charge attack. My second initial is tossed into a nearby Crabbit and misses. His work is done. I send an Enraged Cage Rager into the over-extended S&M and collect another corpse after dice math agrees. Reckoning is Triggered onto Cage Rager by my opponent (After writing this im informed it cant trigger off a Beast, so note that for your games.) I activate my Dread Rots running them to screen the my Rager. Death Knell moves up a bit. Dreamer is Activated and Arcs an Enfeeble onto his Dread Rots in the center (hoping to lessen his Reckoning turn, coming up.) She also drops an Artifice of Deviation down, because why not? My second Cage Rager turns around to poke at the Gorehound who triggered my Arcana. Boosting both initials, he is left on three health, although beat back has removed him from the zone. I decide to leave him be. Bad Puppy. Passing turn, CP rises to 5-3.
Late Game (My notes became unclear, but Ill try and sum up the ending):
He cleans up shop on the Dread Rots to the left allowing him to gain a point when he eventually passes. He also removes a few in the middle again. His Cage Rager advances towards my now contesting Gremlin but cannot reach him quite yet. His rots decide to make some more jam (Jelly!?) and does a little bit of work to boot. Passing turn, Points go to 7-4, Team Dreamer! Im able to kill a few more pieces and eventually win by scenario with a CP of 9-4.
Luis and his gorgeously painted army brought the pain…and boy did it hurt. We both learned a ton and agreed that it was super fun to have to play against each other (finally.) Again big thanks to him for allowing the game to continue and bringing his A-Game. We walked away both winners from that table in more ways than one!
Game Two: Oink, Oink, said the litl…err big piggy!?
Im tossed into my second round with almost no break as the first was down to the wire in time (we both had less than 7 or so minutes left.) Matt is my opponent and during list selection he asks me to say hello to Lord Carver and his minions. I felt that Dreamer was again the better choice as he was bringing ambush in this list and had he dropped it, Child (I felt,) was more vulnerable. (He did drop it, so it was the correct choice in my inexperienced opinion.) I was super nervous having never played Matt, and respected his experience and passion for playing Minions. Notes again are limited this match. (Photos will be from random points, too.)
We both run everything up and about. His list can if it wants pick me apart from ranged and punish me for only bringing two Crabbits. His Scouts quickly prove that as they do some decent damage to precise spirit columns on my S&M. Thats gonna be trouble for me. My Gremlins are making a line straight for his Battle Engine and force it to run away for a turn, which im totally okay with. Two Free guys making a BE “lose” a turn is already a victory in my book. He has flamethrowers and uses them a bit to his advantage here and there. Two Road hogs on my right eventually are breathing down the neck of my beasts. I end up using Abyssal Gate and crack armor on one of them to place him turned away and further back. A stationary shot is met with the Second hog (which since writing this have been informed could not work on a beast. Please note for future games!)
The Gremlin Swarm on the right, next to my flag was racking up CP, Fast. Like really fast. Although my opponent was removing models faster (it felt.) The game turned into a turtle up and to see how long I outlast this “shooting fish in a barrel,” slaughter. I didnt have a game plan and felt that overall I couldnt do much. I anticipated his ambush from the right and set Dread rots on that side to take the blunt of it. He eventually ambushed my left, and with the workings of his units was able to clear everything on that side. I near the end, jammed any entry to my flag with my Death Knell, and hid an incorporeal dream behind it, out of sight and went to a CP of 3-0. He eventually moved in a solo (that I cant name,) to his flag that was on my left harassing my Gremlins with his magical weapon. By that point I was already contesting said flag with one of the remaining two on my left that was hiding in nearby rubble. Passing back to me I went to 4-0, then passed back for a win via Scenario.
Matt was clearly removing each model and any glimmer of hope I had with precision and grace. He noted he had forgotten that I was contesting his flag. Had he been able to contest or score a point, my secondary win object was time. He was at three and a half to my twelve or so minutes when the game ended. It was possible to draw the game out I believe.
I sat in a corner and tried to relax. Matt brought a very overwhelming list that I wasnt remotely prepared for and I was punished for it. His error was probably ambushing the S&M and remaining rots of my left rather than coming in from the right to contest my flag. Either way, Matt played a fantastic game and it only reminded me of how unprepared I really was.
This places me, after a few drops straight into the finals table. Ive never been to a finals table, and have only ever placed second or third due to some luck and high amounts of CP. Realizing im playing into Retribution, im already cracking jokes about how im okay with Second place. (Im SUPER nervous. Like SUPER nervous!)
Game Three: These angry elves dont wear sweaters!
I pair up with Danny. He regularly plays with my round one opponent, Luis. So I already know he has decent knowledge of the general models ill be fielding. I unfortunately dont have the similar knowledge of his. Danny chooses Issyria. I again feel super comfortable bringing…..
You guess it, Dreamer! I really like the units I have at my disposal and feel it will help me on this scenario, by adding pressure and allowing me to score. Allegedly….
*Note, Photos are of random moments*
I weigh my Dread Rots to the opposite side of his Hyperion and toss the Sisters behind the water, hoping they will be involved somehow.
We run both run everything up, and I place a AoD near his Caster/in front of Hemera after moving things up.
Arcanists fuel up Hemera with Focus and advances close enough to the Gremlin, and ‘presses delete.’ He Repo’s away. Hyperion is also loaded with Focus by remaining Arcanist. Sylys advanced and boosts the next offensive spell for Issyria. Hyperion capitalizes on three things this turn. First, he targets my Painted S&M on the right thats not completely in the forest. Secondly ive made that grave mistake of not having one of my two (thats the third mistake, not enough Crabbits!) Crabbits close enough to help my S&M out. (Note, I have chosen Stockpile for my Objective this game.) My skin & moans is riddled down by shots, leaving it all but dead. (Insert Sad Panda Face here!) Inviolable Resolve goes on the sentinels to the left of me. The Dread Rots in the center are hit with Blinding Light. An ancillary shot is triggered on Hyperion which drops the already injured S&M to three health. Sentinels on my left inch up just outside my threat ranges. Danny Passes.
I want to point out at this point, Danny passes with 34 minutes remaining. He took the time to scalpel out the mis-positioned S&M that somehow weathered the storm. I realize im going to have a BAD time, which honestly goes back to me joking about second place before we played. I know this is a hard match up. Really hard. I Recognize that my win objectives are either scenario or time. I decide to play towards both.
I heal the crippled S&M two points with my objective and move him back. I also move my Cage Rager out of harms way as he is well within the threat of the now advanced Sentinels in front of him. I position my Death Knell up a bit while at the same that I decide that for a change (compared to every other Grymkin game ive played outside this tournament,) I need to just push everything else up. I advance into the fray, spacing things out well (as Danny will compliment next turn.) Passing, im able to gain 1CP for Team Dreamer!
Danny invests time measuring and compliments my spacing of units. After some time he decides to “go for it, too” and sends his Sentinels on the left in as they Mini-Feat. Its about this time I realize ill be able to trigger Sacrifice that I had chosen (in addition to Labyrinth,) to heal my S&M back up to full. Danny kills off some Dread Rots including one I trigger Sacrifice With. Sylys prevents magic spells this round, and then my S&M thats up the middle gets blinded. An ancillary shot is triggered and I decide I should Shield Guard it. It easily kills my Crabbit and the AoE nips my sisters for one point each. Arcanists load Hyperion with Focus. Hemera moves back, into the Rubble then takes a shot into the now blinded S&M. He Crits & Dispells Mirage off, that I had place on it earlier (forgot to note above, as I also hid Dreamer in an AoD, too.) Hyperion activates and wants to probably kill the blinded S&M, but manages to miss two shots. The house is blocking sight to his left arm/side. (Note, since writing ive been told he should have had vision, regardless.) He pop shots a Rot or two then the Sentinels on my right just run up towards my Cage Rager. He passes. CP goes 2-1. He passes with 15 minutes of his time left.
Both units of Dread Rots decide to jam, and I misplace one of them (more on that in a second.) Im able to remove the Soulless Escort on the left and a Sentinel or two. Sisters come into the just of things and I remove two Sentinels with one Death Rattle. Neat! Back to the misplay, I block a landing zone/lane to Hyperion in which the non-blinded S&M could otherwise reach at P&S 21. I Instead charge his objective and one shot it. I figure at this point its another target to deal with…and it gets me more on his side of the board, keeping him on his side. Pass Turn, CP count goes to 4-2.
He cleans up some Dread Rots. Next he decides to blind the engaged S&M, and rolls exactly what he needs to successfully hit (great gamble/shot!) Sentinels activate to charge my S&M, and do so gaining the backstrike bonus. Doesnt take much to ask the S&M to politely leave the game. The sentinels on the right mini-feat, and he is able to have two of them reach my objective and one on the DK. Two remove the Objective allowing him to score one CP. My DK takes six damage. Hyperion positions close enough to the gremlin on the right and misses it entirely. He passes turn, and CP is now 4-3.
I now have sentinels near my beasts and caster. Too close for comfort. I use S&M and my Cage Rager to mop up about seven total. One is left toeing the zone. I decide to walk dreamer up around the forest to see it and Gate it off. Im able to. Im also able to leave her totally exposed to seven sentinels and a nearby Hemera. NOT COOL DUDE. Im camping four after my grave mistake and im unable to gain incorporeal as I had the turn before (fearing ranged attacks.) So….im able to block a landing zone for Hemera with a nearby Gremlin Swarm and start kicking myself as I pass turn. CP changes to 5-3.
Danny begins his turn with about three and a half minutes left. He tries to soften me up with blind, arc’d off the Hemera that walked up and it works. DEF 13, Armor 16 Dreamer on Four fury camp, ready to accept a beating! I take a shot from Hyperion first and Shield guard it. The other Crabbit dies. I next, take a nice chunk again, and this time transfer it. He times himself just as the Sentinels from both units that can reach her, get ready to do so. CP Rises to 6-4.
Danny essentially read every move I made well. He was unfamiliar with dreamer yet otherwise punished my over extensions and rendered any other plan I could have come up with, useless. Retribution in general isnt a fun match (according to he who wont be named yet,) and going against a very experienced player like Danny makes things that much more difficult.
I felt I played into every match at a deficit. My opponents brought with them, game plans and executed them efficiently..while I had none. I remember each turn only being able to ask myself silently what the win conditions were, and kept moving towards them, even though I was far from confident/comfortable. I have a TON of learning to do. Moving forward id like to work towards converting those deficits into more of 50/50 games somehow. It will take work, and a better understanding of my models (and theirs) to do so.
Additionally I plan to make Battle Reports on the regular. For those I need better timed photos that actually line up with the turns rather than random times, and Document CP gaining and turns more accurately. I was very nervous still being new to this faction, playing a new list, and trying to remember what my faction models did. Also if you read this far..WOW. So much detail, I need to learn to cut the fat.
Anyhow..lets get outta here! Thanks all. Its truly appreciated! Let me know what you liked, and what I can improve on! Until next time!