Long time no see. As work got in the way, I could not play any games in the last couple of weeks, but fortunately I now have a long summer break and will try to play more games, especially as the best wife of all is in the final stages of her master’s degree and therefore prefers to have me out of the house in the afternoons so she can work in peace
So this week I played quite a few games on Thursday and today and I wanted to share how they went and what I learnt from them.
Yesterday, I played two games of Warmachine in the Spielbar. I had originally planned to play against Christian (the regular Chris) as there is a tournament next weekend and he wants to test his list for that, but he had another commitment that got in the way. Fortunately, Tobias, who is also playing Cygnar, was up for some games. As he is a more experienced Cygnar player, I hoped to learn some tricks and tactics from him. In game 1, I ran eCaine against eStryker, Cygnar’s premier melee warcaster and in a tight game, eCaine ended up being exactly half an inch within Stryker’s melee reach. Turns out ‘exactly half an inch within Stryker’s melee reach’ is in the Top Five of places Caine does not want to be and he died on the last strike, though his high DEF actually actually forced him to boost all attack rolls to have a chance to succeed. I think I would have been in an OK position otherwise, as I had more powerful guys left and could have wiped out all of his mobile elements to stop him from contesting my control zone whilst sending in my chaff to contest his. Oh well, lesson learned and it was an incredibly tight game. I hope I start getting the hang of distances again. All this pre-measuing in 40k has spoilt my distance estimation skills.
In the second game, I decided to run eVictoria Haley, also known as cheesy Haley/Cygnar’s answer to Crix’s broken casters and a number of less savoury epithets. She would be accompanied by my newest toy, the Stormwall, basically Warmachine’s version of the Riptide (though each other army also has a similar unit, called Colossal for Warmachine and Gargantuan for Hordes). Tobias ran pVictoria Haley, her first version, and his Stormwall, so it was Stormwall on Stormwall and Haley on Haley action. Long story short, Haley 2 is the balls and she made my Stormwall much better than his by having better spells and more importantly giving it +2 movement, so in turn 1 my Stormwall shot his up pretty badly, then in turn 2 he charged his counterpart and punched him with his Voltaic fists. I managed to take out the complete left side of his Stormwall’s damage grid, but more importantly each hit also generates a lightning strike against the nearest model, which happened to be his Haley. Turns out that she is not lightning-proof and she exploded. I had also popped Haley’s feat, which forces each enemy model/unit in 18″ to activate in the order I choose and forfeit either their movement or combat action, which would have left most of his army stranded and unable to do much.
Tobias was also very kind to provide lots of advice on my list and my tactics, so it was not just cool to win another game, but also to glean some insight in how to run Cygnar.
Today I went to the GW in Trier to play some games for the summer campaign they run. I had registered to play with Imperial Knights, as I wanted to do something I hadn’t done before and also because all my other armies were already run by other people and I admit I rather be the only one to play an army than to be one of many.
In game 1, I played Ulf’s Chaos Knights and we both ran the Adamantine Lance formation from the Red Waagh! which gives each Knight in 3″ of another Knight a re-roll for its Ion Shield save, Charge roll and 1d3 Hammer of Wrath hits instead of 1. As predicted, the re-rolls on the shields made shooting really bad, so we decided to settle it like giant robots with pointy chainsaws and the end result was that all 6 Knights murdered each other in combat thanks to all being Initiative 4 and having D-strength weaponry. He also lost his Terminators and Chaos Lord with their bazillion combi-meltas and I lost most of my Stormtrooper allies, so I guess I technically won as I still had two small and definitely shell-shocked units of Stormtroopers left by turn 4. This game also took a whopping 32 minutes to play, despite being a 1.500 points game. And a helluva good time too.
In the second game, I took only two Knights and some Stormtroopers against Necrons and even though they managed to kill one of the Knights with their Gauss gun and Imhotek being able to drop a Knight to 3 Hull Points with a single Lightning Strike, in the end the Knights prevailed and managed to kill all the Necrons whilst the Stormtroopers sat on the Relic and blew up shit with their meltaguns.
The final two games were against Simon (that’s Simon Elsen who regularly features on White Dwarf Daily, has won German Armies on Parade and in general can paint at an ungodly level) who ran his Tyranid army with no less than 6 Flying Monstrous Creatures (3 Tyrants, 2 Harpies and 1 Crone) as well as Gargoyles with Objective Secured that can recycle on a 4+ after dying. That is an army that can give Knights fits, as they only have Heavy Stubbers to take down flyers and even then the odds are 1:108 (technically 15:108 as I have 5 Heavy Stubbers), but I had brought some Guard allies with a Vendetta as well as an Aegis wall with a Quad Gun. In game 1, he inexplicably gave me first turn, then deployed nothing but a Venomthrope and one Tyrant in a ruin. Turns out that if you have 2 Heavy Quad Mortars that I gave a re-roll to hit with Prescience and then the Ignore Cover order with the Company Command Squad, which resulted in a dead Venomthrope and an injured Tyrant that then died in turn 2 to more of the same before he could roll for his reserves to come in. In the second game, he deployed everything and it was a tighter game, ending when he decided to gamble and land his Tyrants on turn 5, hoping that the game would end. It didn’t and two Knights are better than two Hive Tyrants to nobody’s surprise.
This is what I ran:
Company Command Squad
Primaris Psyker: Mastery Level 2
10 Veterans with 3 Plasmaguns
5 Stormtroopers with 2 Meltaguns
2 Heavy Quad Mortars (I found some old Squat models on eBay)
Aegis Defense Line
Overall, I really like the Knights as a primary army, though their high point cost means that it is more or less impossible to run them without allies and Guard or Stormtroopers are the best, as they have cover your problem areas, such as Flyers and dig-in artillery.
But now to the second part of the article, my gaming resolutions for the summer:
1) I want to do more painting
I have already starting this one and painted up my complete eCaine 50 points list, as well as most other units in my Cygnar force. Christian offered to do my Stormblade infantry, so I only need to do the Stormsmith Stormcallers (basically dudes with Lightning Rods that can either hurl lightning directly or even set up lines between them or even triangles to do some funky lightning action and electrocute guys), a unit of Sword Knights and then the Cygnarans are done.
Next in the painting queue are some terrain pieces to complete my Wall of Martyrs set that the wife bought me two Christmases ago.
2) I want to play at least 2 games of Apocalypse this summer
So all volunteers are welcome.
3) I want to improve my Warmachine skills
So I have already formally asked the wife and offered a range of activities in return to get next Saturday off to go to the Warmachine tournament. Not to play as it is too soon for me to play in a timed event and I know how much of a burden a novice player is in a tournament, but to silently sit in a corner and shamelessly take notes to absorb as much information and pick up as many dirty tricks as possible.
4) In general, just game more and make sure everyone is having a good time doing so.
5) Write a couple more tactica articles.