As I finally received my Riot Quest Season 2 box and Kickstarter add-ons last week, I wanted today´s game to be something a bit different and thematic. So the premise is that after the Claiming, Feora the Forsaken has gathered her last few followers/Infernalist allies and is now marauding through the countryside of Llael, looking for people to take her anger out on. Marshall d´Elyse, alerted by the Hermit of Henge Hold, has assembled a crack team of ruffians and specialists to take her out.
The scenario is a modified version of the Hardcore scenario. So there are no flags, no objectives and no zones, but a 20-by-20 inch killbox in the centre of the table. Should one of the two casters not be in that square at the end of their turn (starting round 2), they take 5 unpreventable damage. If one side controls the central square, the other side´s caster also takes those 5 points of damage. This damage cannot be removed by any means later on in the game. In addition, every time a caster kills an enemy light warjack or warbeast, their opponent takes 3 unpreventable damage and each time they kill a heavy, they deal 5 damage. This damage can be healed off though. I added this ad-hoc during the game to motivate the casters getting involved in the melee, especially Feora with her flaming chainsaw.
Feora´s list consists of: Hierophant, 2 Crusaders, Hand of Judgement, Revenger (got Hellwrought pre-game), Redeemer (got Firestarter), Dervish, max Choir, max Holy Zealots with Monolith (the obligatory meatshields with Death March on them), Hand of Silence (let´s assume he got roped into the whole thing by Feora), Great Princess Regna, Alain Runewood, 2 Umbral Guardian, Wrack
Ashlynn brought: Toro, Vanguard, Sylys Wyshnalyrr (the bookish one going berserk in the end), Scythe (the scout to find Feora), Anastasia di Bray (the spy to find her), Boomhowler the Destroyer (hey, he was promised a second Hierarch mask to go with the one he already had), Underboss Vizkoya (another scalp for his collection), Boss Machorne (every crew needs a wrecker/mechanic), Hermit, Harlowe (the lone gunman in case things go south), Hutchuk (he is a bounty hunter), Wrong Eye and Snapjaw (would you say no to a pair of crocodiles if you were on a (wo)manhunt?), Flubbin (aerial reconnaissance), Malvin and Mayhem (more Riot Quest models), Widget (aerial recon and repairs) and Dannon Blythe & Bull (the original bounty hunters).
The Mercenaries won the roll-off and decided to let the Menites go first to potentially be able to shoot first.
Having Wrecked the last guy who said ´Hey, shouldn´t you have ascended with all the other Menites?´, Feora´s forces deployed as a wedge in the middle.
Ashlynn´s 11 blocking Feora´s way.
Tasteful sideboob, erm, side view.
Anastasia and Hutchuk ambushed and the Umbral Guardians waited until they were needed to intercept some shots.
As all her spells had been put in play before the game, there was no need to cast anything and the Menite forces ran up to claim board space.
Having received Hand of Fate and accelerated by True Path, Harlowe moved behind the forest and tried to shoot Hand of Silence, but all his shots were intercepted by Umbral Guardians.
The Mercenaries also moved up swiftly, Scythe using True Path to be able to run a colossal 16 inches to threaten the left Menite flank. Wrong Eye cast Submerge and Star-Crossed and charged forward. How you charge forward while submerged, I don´t know.
The Zealots were sent in to block Countercharges, but seeing as there was little that could reach it, the Toro nevertheless Countercharged to kill the first one. The rest of the unit tied up Boomhowler, the Toro, Scythe and Vizkoya.
Trying to trigger Road to War, the Redeemer fired three missiles in the general direction of Ashlynn, but not managing to directly hit her. That´s why they call them MISSiles, badum-tsh! While not setting off Road to War, Ashlynn, Sylys, the Hermit and the Vanguard were all set on fire.
Hand of Silence also tried to trigger Road to War, but his spray only killed the Zealot in front of it and did another point of damage to the Hermit, but missing Harlowe. He repositioned backwards in shame, but still taking the soul of the Zealot.
Using the Revenger to channel and having received the Harmonious Exaltation of the Hierophant, Feora cast Scorn twice and dropped Harlowe and Boss Machorne to go to 4 Anger tokens. This would automatically make her a Focus 8 caster next round.
Regna summoned a Shrieker, which then advanced forward.
Hand of Judgement set Malvin and Mayhem on fire. The Choir sang Passage, making all warjacks untargetable for non-magical shooting.
Sylys died in a fire, Ashlynn prevented the damage with her last focus point and the Hermit just took a third point of damage.
Hutchuk came in from the side and put the Wreck out of its misery.
Anastasia came in from the other side and stabbed the Umbral Guardian that had run to engage Scythe in the back before Underboos Vizkoya finished it off.
Vizkoya then shot the Monolith Bearer and even though another Zealot took the damage (I took it had Call to Sacrifice, not Sacrificial Pawn, my bad), it got dragged into melee with Vizkoya. In fact, it would have been better for the Mercenary side if I had played the ability correctly. D´ah! Scythe tried to shoot the Monolith Bearer, but missed as it was in melee. If it had stayed put, Scythe could have easily scythed down (erm…) three or four Zealots.
The Hermit walked into the forest and cast Whispers at the Gate to drop the Menite heavies´ Armour. Widget used Ancillary Attack to let the Toro kill one Zealot, then it advanced and used its three Focus from Ashlynn to kill another two Zealots and take two swings at the Revenger, dealing 17 damage before being Repulsed out of melee range.
Ashlynn feated, returning Boss Machorne and Harlowe, then cast Hand of Fate on Boomhowler. The Vanguard charged the Revenger, hit the Assault shot and luckily knocked out the shield, so it wouldn´t be repulsed out of melee. It easily killed the Revenger and the Zealot next to it. This opened up a charge lane for Boomhowler, who casually put down Hand of Silence and dropped the Crusader from full down to six boxes thanks to Hand of Fate, Trash and Amputation. Jeese Louise!
The newly returned Harlowe shot the last Zealot on the right and then finally killed off the Monolith Bearer.
Flubbin merrily dropped bombs into the direction of the Menite forces, killing three choir boys thanks to Carpet Bomb.
Wrong Eye advanced, casting Submerge and Star-Crossed, then Snapjaw went to town on Hand of Judgement (which was also in the Hermit bubble) and killed it all on its own!
Not to be outdone, Malvin pushed The Button and Mayhem flew into the Redeemer, clobbering it and then Killing Spreeing into the Dervish to reduce that one to four boxes.
Boomhowler moved behind the Crusader with Hoof It at the end of the turn.
A bloody turn! Can Feora and her cohorts come back from this one?
MAT 6 struck again and the Crusader blew its full load (after receiving the Hymn of Battle) on Mayhem without finishing it off. The Dervish did a little damage to it, but the Umbral Guardian spiked a 22 on its 4 damage dice and splatted Mayhem (and Malvin too I guess).
Now at P+S 17 (and the Hermit debuff), Feora easily sawed Snapjaw in half. This let the Dervish move up a bit too.
The last Holy Zealot managed to miss the Hermit twice in a rare display of skill. The Shrieker on the other hand boosted a shot to kill Ashlynn´s trusty aide Vasco and Widget.
Runewood charged the Vanguard, but missed it. Regna ran backwards, staying at maximum transfer range of the Shrieker. The Shrieker then paid the Tithe with its last essence point.
Heartbroken that Snapjaw had died, Wrongeye charged the Dervish, taking three damage from a Defensive Strike from the Umbral Guardian. The charge attack finished off the Dervish, so Wrongeye made a boosted attack into the Umbral, which had already taken six damage absorbing Harlowe´s shooting, so it too died and Wrongeye ate it, then spent the last two Fury to heal back to full.
Flubbin hurled more bombs into the choir, adding insult to injury.
The Toro missed with two of its three attacks on the Shrieker, but Boss Machorne killed it and the last Zealot.
Seeing another character to add to his tally, Vizkoya shot Runewood.
Scythe aimed and destroyed the Crusader.
The Vanguard killed the last choir member to free up Boomhowler.
Ashlynn cast True Path and moved to be within 12 inches of Boomhowler. The Hermit advanced towards Feora and again reduced everyone´s armour.
Thanks to True Path, Harlowe managed to get within range of the Hierophant and Regna and shot them both. He also tried to shoot Feora, but missed her twice.
Easily within charge range of Feora thanks to Bloodthirst and True Path, Boomhowler didn´t break a sweat and put Feora down in two swings, even through her overboosted power field.
VICTORY FOR THE MERCENARIES!