Friday, 23 August 2013

#etc13 Warmachine ETC 2013

No blog for a long time - sorry. I've been getting married and other exciting things. 

So. After the trauma of the elongated death rows of Maelstrom games it looked like 2013 would be a year without a Warmachine ETC and that all of the ticket money everyone had shelled out was lost. A shame on all counts as I loved attending events at Maelstrom and very few people I know in the hobby didn't lose out in one way or another when Maelstrom went under.

Thankfully the strength of the uk Warmachine community was evident once again as familiar names stepped in to put together a rescue package and the north west gaming centre agreed to host it for free. My thanks to Tony Moore, Rich Loxam, Jamie Perkins, James Boosey and the rest of the community that came together to put this on. 

So with an event back on we confirmed our dream team of members to represent Hull Warmachine. Myself and Dave Forster had teamed up with Paul North and Andrew Kenny last year but with Paul graduating to tournent obscurity with Epic Flail (who?) and Andrew Kenny now a fully fledged member of his native Sheffield Honour Guard - we had space for 2 new recruits. We smashed the clubs transfer record  to bring in Nick Langrick for a handful of sandwhichs a and multipack of haribo. Tim Boyle stepped in at the last minute to round out the team. 

Hull Warmachine 2013
Luke Foster - Mercenaries 
Dave Forster - Khador
Nick Langrick - Menoth
Tim Boyle - Khador

I suspect they will be happy to tell you about their games and lists so I will restrict myself to rambling about my own. So ... The lists...

Since I started mercs last year I have tried out as many different units and combos as I can. This is the real strength of mercs - the sheer number of valid combinations that can make up a list is mind boggling - and probably a side effect of not having anything really obviously 'over powered' is that there are very few Mercenary net lists. 

After the best part of a year of testing I knew that the matchup I was really struggling against was Menoth. Feora would roast my infantry, Kreoss would purify off the upkeeps I relied upon to keep me safe and then knock me down. And Harby.... Well the less said the better. 

So I came up with the vague idea of putting together an antimenoth list that didn't care about fire, knockdown or purification. The only caster that came to mind was Bart who could run fairly jack heavy and keep himself and his jacks on their feet with his 'none-purifiable' spell: Batten Down The Hatches - also boosting the armour into the bargain. Now everyone knows that Bart's best friend is the Galleon and I wanted to try him out with 2. I had a quick chat with Chris from Sheffield Outpost who I had been told was using double galleon at the masters and had done well - he reassured me I wasn't barking mad and encouraged me to give it a try. I took the idea to the rest of the team and with some group think tanking we came up with the below list. 

- Galleon
- Galleon
Max Boomhowlers 
Dougal MacNaile
Tactical Arcanist Corps
Aiyana and Holt

Franticly half assembled Galleon on the thursday before the tournament - more pictures of finished armies to follow.

I wanted my other list to make the most of the characters left available to me and to take the pirate army I painted up so I took an all comers McBain(!!!!) list. 

Seadogs w/ Walls
Press Gangers
Doc K
Lord R
First Mate H
Bosun G
Madelyn Corbeau

The games 

Game 1 

We were drawn up against one of the teams from the north east and after a couple of minutes chatting to the Georgie lads I knew we were in for a fun round. I was playing Russell Hunt with his eMakeda Skorne army. 
I had a blast in this game with Russell. I took my all comers MacBain list and the single Galleon did me proud, dragging in and killing two heavies. Russell killboxed himself giving me 2 control points so I position my army around one scoring flag and did my best to kill anything he sent in which eventually resulted in me winning with 5 control points. McBane spent the game cowering as far away from Molik Karn as possible. The final action was the press gangers bundling the tyrant commander into a sack and dragging him away from the flag. 

Result : Win (5cps)
Team Result: Win

Game 2

Flush from our first round victory we were paired up against some familiar faces in one of the York Teams. As many of you will know the first event attended by most of the Hull lads was our team event against York when we were given a real thrashing. This looked a great opportunity to see how far we had come. I was paired against Conrad Bettis, a thoroughly excellent gent and strong Menoth player. 

Knowing that I'd be dropping Bart I waited to see what he would pick which ended up being the Harbinger. Having played against Nicks Harby list I knew I was in for a challenge but was confident I had the tools to deal with her. Conrad was certainly concerned about the Galleons and reveling in the lack of a killbox Harby floated around the table edge when she could. My galleons were able to put out enough firepower in the end to whittle down his jacks and his medium based infantry. The final turn saw me 3-1 up on control points having just lost 1 of the galleons to the two remaining bastions. Conrad was left with 2 choir, 2 bastions and Harby.  I had a fresh galleon left but only 2 mins on the clock so needed to force the issue if I wasn't going to loose on death clock. 

I used Holt to fell the two choir contesting the flag and ran Bart in to dominate. Harby was also within 4 of the flag but in steam roller 2013 warcasters cannot contest so managed to snatch a win on 5 Control points. The Galleon finished off a Reckoner for good measure.

Image courtesy of:
if you want me to take it down just let me know.

A solid win with the biggest threat of loss coming from the clock. A definitive turn around in my fortunes against Menoth and Galleon number 2 is looking like a solid gambit. 

Result: Win
Team Result: Win

Game 3

Round 3 and I was told by the EO that we were on the top table. Uh oh. Sure enough we were drawn against the Wolf pack - a very strong team in the Warmachine scene and we knew we were in for some tough games. 

I was up against Lewis (myself and Nick played against Lewis and Moak at the doubles a few years ago and we both faced up against each other respectively). Lewis was playing eHaley and I had taken McBane. The scenario was Destruction which allowed the gun line to sit back and whittle me down as I advanced. Lewis played the game just right and threw me by saving his feat until turn 3 forcing me to feat first. In previous games against eHaley I have used my feat to counter hers to good effect but not so today. In the end I decided to camp focus and run at Haley but it wasn't enough and McBane fell to the massed fire of the boys in blue. 

Lewis won best painted - his army is heavily converted and I cant wait to see his WIP Cygnar Galleon...

I was pretty thoroughly beat in this one but our team all ended up losing so I didn't feel my loss on the 'critical' table was big blow. 

Result: Loss
Team Result: Loss

Saturday Night

Saturday night was great fun including a huge meaty burger (the cow probabaly preferred being eaten by a vegetarian like myself ... :-\ ), some drinking, getting wet in the rain and zombie dice and flux (simultaneously) with the lads before a stagger home with a big gang of Geordies. (The team we played first round on Saturday and the team we would play in the 4th round the following morning).

Game 4

More Skorne? Where did they all come from? I was playing Dave with pMorghoul. For some reason the 2 tournament games I have had against pMorghoul have left me with recurring nightmares about the stupid mistakes I have made leaving me failing to kill her (it is a her isn't it? Maybe it's a he?). 

So Dave was giving me a kicking on attrition - Hawk and the press gangers were pummeling gators with table legs and bits of wood to good effect but Galleon was trying to look inconspicuous as 2 Titans and Molik Karn sat grinning at him from 9 inchs away. 

Dave decided to push his advantage and ran Morgaret (New name) up to the galleon (base to base) - stared him straight in the eyes (center of his front arcs) and popped his/her feat. 

This was a balls out play and left me scratching my head - could I kill him? Was it even a him? Could I kill her if it turned out to be a her? Could I do it all without spending any focus within 10 inches of Morgaret her/himself. 

I decided I had to go for it and this is what I did.

1 . Death field with Ragman to reduce armour of M.
2. shoot galleon at M - couldn't scatter off so in effect pow 9 blast damage. M transfers damage. 
3. Reinholdt have McBain lucky charm
4. McBain energizes for 2 inchs and charges M.
5. McBane hits - grievous wounds (no transfers) and fails to kill M by 2 wounds. 

I lose the game. Dave played better and was going to win on attrition anyway. However I have still spent the last few days thinking how stupid I was and what I should have done. Which was:

1. Ragman does the death thing. 
2. A pirate walks up to Morghoul setting up gang for McBain. 
3. Reinholdt gives lucky charm
4. McBain  casts fortune on himself incase he misses his attack, energisers and charges (now with +2mat and str) putting grievous wounds onto Morghoul 
5. Galleon shoots Morghoul and can't miss with the blast damage which now cannot be transferred. 

If I had done that and assuming I hit with one of the two chances (3d6 choose 2 needing to score a 9) then - assuming I roll the same damage I score 15 extra points of damage and overkill by 13 wounds.  Oh well .. I know for next time!

Props to Dave on a well earned victory - the next turn was looking bad for me no matter what I did. 

Result: Loss
Team Result: Loss

Game 5

I was hoping for one last chance to play Bart and his twin galleons so for the first time in my life I was pleased to have drawn a Menoth player. 

We played team CGC Troll-something from that fancy LON-DON. I played Steve who picked pSeverius with a Judicator, he mentioned he had already scooped 3 wins so I knew I was had been paired up against a strong player (I was only on 2 wins).

I am sure Steve would admit this game was quite one sided - my boom howlers held off his infantry whilst my twin Galleons shot the Judicator (into itty bitty pieces). From there I whittled his force down and eventually killed all of the army down to the last model (Sevy) and scored 5 control points into the bargain. 

This was by far my most comprehensive win in competitive play and Steve took it like a champ -  Im not sure I wouldnt have been a tad grumpy if the table was turned but Steve just grinned and tried to score the maximum points he could. 

It was a great game and a great way to end the weekend. 

Result: Win
Team Result: Loss

All in all the team came 19th out of 29 teams and I came 30th out of 116 players - with 3 wins and 2 losses.

I had a great time - many thanks to my opponents, team mates and event organizers. 

Cant wait for next year.