If its ears are / aren´t (delete as applicable) round, put it in the ground: Major Beth Maddox vs Garryth, The Blade Of Retribution (Solomachine)

Welcome to this week´s battle report! After the VTC, I decided that it was time for a new faction and as the new elves looked quite cool and there was a used lot for sale in my meta, I thought why not? While it was tempting to start straight off with Garryth2, Issyria and the new hotness Falcir, I felt more compelled to look at the freshly-updated Garryth1 as my starting point. Facing off against them will be a Beth Maddox list in Heavy Metal that I was using quite a bit recently.

NOTE: The Arcantrik Force Generator is a proxy for a Trident, as mine are still somewhere in America and estimated to arrive by the end of the month.

I decided to use more 3D terrain, let me know if you like it or not.

DEPLOYMENT

The Cygnaran forces won the die roll and decided to go first because they had 4 upkeep spells they wanted to put in play early on. The army consisted of: Beth Maddox with a Squire and two Stormclads, Archduke Arlan Strangewayes, two Morrowan Archons, Anastasia di Bray, Grand Master Gabriel Throne, Journeyman Warcaster with Firefly, 2 max units of Sword Knights with Officer and Standard, min unit of Field Mechaniks. It is all in the Heavy Metal theme.
The Retribution forces: Garryth1 with Sylys Wyshnalyrr, Phoenix, Manticore, Chimera and Moros, Elara, Tyro of the Third Chamber with Gorgon, 3 Arcanist Mechaniks, House Shyeel Artificer, Scythe, House Shyeel Arcanists, Cylena Rafyll and the Nyss Hunter (max), Trident in the Forges of War theme.
Side view

ROUND 1

Beth Maddox put Assail on the right Stormclad and Snipe on the left one, then Dauntless Resolve on the right unit of Sword Knights. Runewood gave that unit Pathfinder.
Throne gave the other Sword Knight unit Pathfinder too and the Journeyman cast Arcane Shield on them. The rest of the Cygnar army ran forward. The Archon nestled in each unit to cover them with their aura and make them virtual DEF17 in melee.
The Chimera got loaded up with Focus for its Phantasmal Field ability, then ran forward. It even got place another two inches forward by the Trident after the Trident repositioned back. The Trident kept one power token for next round. Sylys told Garryth an Arcane Secret and then he cast Crippling Grasp on the left Sword Knights. He then cast Mirage on himself and repositioned forward.
Elara cast Silence of Death on herself. The Trident had a Force Barrier up.
The Artificer cast Force Wall on the Nyss, who then ran forward, staying out of the reduced threat range of the Sword Knights. The Manticore put up a Covering Fire in front of the right Sword Knights.

ROUND 2

Despite being DEF 15 against shooting, the Chimera took a boosted shot from the Firefly, followed a lucky hit from Throne, who also gave the left Sword Knights Tough, which took out the Generator and thus the Phantasmal Field. The Stormclads advanced a bit, getting a free focus activating next to Maddox thanks to Accumulator Storm Knight, then shot the Chimera down easily.
Never one to miss an opportunity for a cheap kill, Anastasia tried to shiv the Artificer, but fell one short of killing him.
The Sword Knights on the Cygnaran right shuffled forward due to Crippling Grasp, whereas their colleagues on the left ran around the Covering Fire and into the round zone.
The Artificer staggered around and walloped Anastasia, killing her with one swipe of his Megamittens.
The Gorgon sprayed over three Sword Knights, hitting two, but one toughed. It then moved back thanks to Speed of Death.
Scythe and the Nyss unloaded into the Sword Knights. There are some lucky Tough rolls and the Archon also took a shot in the process, but in the end only four Sword Knights were still alive.
The Trident got back to three Power Tokens, moved forward and dragged the Phoenix forward into charge range of the left Stormclad, then fired all its guns into the Archon, leaving it on two damage boxes. It then repositioned back.
The Arcanist squad of doom fueled up the Phoenix and gave it Concentrated Power, as well as pumping focus into Moros. The Phoenix charged the Stormclad and left it on for damage boxes, but knocking out everything but the Cortex. Moros moved to the centre and shot the Archon with a fully boosted shot, banishing it back to Morrow´s realm (the shelf, Morrow´s realm is the shelf). More repositioning happened.
Garryth took out the Stormclad with two boosted handcannon shots. The Manticore threw down a Covering Fire in front of it, as the Sword Knights had fanned out all over the zone to limit good Covering Fire placements. They also regretted not having a jack nearby to procc Flank of.

No points are scored this round.

Cygnar 0 – Retribution 0

ROUND 3

The Sword Knights tried to avenge the Archon and killed two Nyss Hunters.
The Stormclad managed to score five telling blows onto the Phoenix, leaving it nary a box, so Throne took it out.
The Morrowan Archon charged the Manticore, but not doing much more than denting its Power Field. The Firefly took two swings at Moros, but DEF14 made it hard for the Firefly to land a telling blow.

No points are scored again.

Cygnar 0 – Retribution 0

The Manticore was fully loaded, braved a free strike from the Archon into its reloaded Power Field to walk behind the Archon and kill it, but then could not hit the Sword Knights around it.
The Nyss Hunters killed every Sword Knight bar the leader, who remained standing on one damage box. They also dealt some damage to Throne and a Stormclad.
The Artificer cast Magno Bolt on the Officer, pushing the Nyss in melee away before dealing damage, so only the Officer died.
The Gorgon wounded Throne severely, but had to kill a Nyss Hunter to get the shot. Scythe also shot Throne, but missed him on the second shot.
Sylys told Garryth another secret (´Don´t miss now or you are fucked!´) and he cast Crippling Grasp on the second Stormclad, then shot it with his two guns before moving back 3 inches. The Trident then does Trident things, charging the Firefly to slam it into the house, then shooting it with its right guns, as well as taking huge chunks out of the Stormclad from the other two sides. Happy with its work, the Trident fell back.
Moros used a focus point to activate its Fleet ability, then walked over the Firefly, cut down the Stormclad with two swipes, stabbed Throne with its third strike and then carved a bit out of the objective as an encore.
Seeing how the Firefly could get back up again and potentially kill Garryth, Elara charged over the objective and finished off the Cygnar light.
The Nyss Hunters scored the left zone.

Cygnar 0 – Retribution 1

ROUND 4

Seeing how there is no point holding back, Maddox feated. The Journeyman put Arcane Shield on her and Maddox camped six to be as safe as possible (oh well, Garryth´s feat being Garryth´s feat and all…)
Aided by the feat, the Sword Knights cut the Manticore apart.
Runewood ran into the zone to contest it. The Gobber Mechaniks initiated Operation Gobber Shield. The Sword Knights scored the left zone.

Cygnar 1 – Retribution 1

The Trident charged into the Sword Knights, placing Garryth forward with a Telekinetic Wave.
It sprayed all around itself, killing four Sword Knights in total.
The Nyss Hunters killed Runewood and began scoring the zone again.
Elara put Ghost Walk on Garryth.
The Gorgon and Moros used all their attacks to kill the objective.
Scythe cleared out all four Mechaniks in one fell swoop.
With all the swagger in the world, Garryth charged Maddox, used his feat to prevent her from reducing the damage and then went to town on her, but ended up not killing her! Oh the shame! Retribution scored the middle zone, the left one and got a point for destroying the objective.

Cygnar 1 – Retribution 4

ROUND 5 (SHORT VERSION)

Turns out that without being able to spend focus, Maddox had no chance to hit Garryth and the Sword Knights could not destroy the Trident, so the Journeyman and the Squire had to run to contest and nothing else happened.

In the Retribution turn, the Trident killed another six Sword Knights, with only the Officer surviving. The Gorgon killed the Journeyman and the Nyss scrapped the Squire.

Wanting to end it all, Moros charged and paralysed Maddox before Garryth finished her of on the last attack as she now had seven focus points to prevent damage.

Cygnar 1 – Retribution 6

ASSASSINATION AND SCENARIO WIN FOR THE RETRIBUTION

Standard

Henge Hold revisited: Captain Damiano vs Agathon, The Voice in the Darkness (King of the Hill)

This week´s game sees Captain Damiano face off against Agathon, the Voice in Darkness, in another humdinger of a game. I was initially a bit reluctant as having a troop-heavy list face off against a caster with Hellmouth seems to be a recipe for disaster, but we will see if those fears were justified.

Damiano won the roll-off and went first. His list consisted of: Damiano with Sylys Wyshnalyrr, Nomad and Rocinante, Anastasia di Bray, Sergeant Nicolas Verendrye, Alexia2, Stannis Broker, 2 Death Archons, max Steelhead Cavalry, 2 full units of Steelhead Halberdiers, min Steelhead Riflemen and a Steelhead Volley Gun.
Agathon brought: Agathon with Roget d´Vyaros, 2 Tormentors, Soul Stalker, 3 Foreboders, Infernal Gate, Princess Regna, Hermit, Wretch, Runewood2, Eilish2, Umbral Guardian, Nicia2, Lynda, max Cultists with Orin2, min Cultists
Something, something, sideview

ROUND 1

The Steelheads ran forward. Death March went on the Halberdiers on the left and Sure Foot on the ones on the right of the screen.
Nicia was moved forward by the Gate, which missed its own shots (they had to scatter anyway as nobody was in 12 inches) and killed a Halberdier, giving a soul to Agathon.
Agathon dropped another two Steelheads with Dark Fires, taking their souls too. They then summoned a Desolator, which moved backwards after placing a cloud. The Wretch got sacrificed for it. Regna summoned a Shrieker and the Infernal forces ran forward.

ROUND 2

Rocinante tried to shoot the Soul Stalker, but the Umbral Guardian appeared and took the shot, but died from it.
Anastasia came in from Ambush and stabbed Nicia in the back, using her Backstab ability, you know, for backstabbing.
The Death Archon who had collected the corpses of the three dead Halberdiers used two for Annihilator and Spectral Fucker, erm Flicker, charged the Foreboder and then placed into melee with the Tormentor (which had elected not to countercharge as it would otherwise have been in range of all the Halberdiers and gunners on that side). The second attack finished off the Foreboder and dealt a disappointing 4 damage to the Tormentor, even after being boosted to 4 dice.
Never the less, some Halberdiers managed to charge the Tormentor and also engage the Shrieker.
Damiano gave the Volleygun and Riflemen a coin each for Moneyshot, which enabled them to kill the Tormentor. The Riflemen used their War-Tempered ability to deal the killing blow.
The Halberdiers on the left were on fire and killed the Soul Stalker easily.
At the end of the turn, the Steelheads were very much in the face of the Infernals.
Regna and Agathon each ate one Cultist from the leftmost unit.
Lynda the Forgotten had been forgotten by Anastasia and she ambushed the Ambusher, backstabbing the backstabber … OK, I´ll see myself out now.
The Cultists flailed about ineffectively at the DEF15 Halberdiers, but Orin killed two with an Annihilation spell, gaining two souls in the process.
Roget d´Vyaros had to kill one of the Cultists as it was in the way of the Tormentor.
Roget then got turned into a Tormentor. Agathon also feated this turn. They also cast two Hellmouth spells, avoiding targeting models in 3″ of Alexia. That killed two Heavy Cavalry models, the second Death Archon, some Halberdiers and dinged up the Nomad, though not destroying any systems.
As Eilish Garrity missed his Hex Blast spell even with Agathon´s additional feat dice, the Tormentor had to boost his attacks and only killed two Halberdiers.
The Infernal Gate shot into the Halberdier unit and killed 3.
The Shrieker shrieked and killed the last Halberdier in the way to make space for the Desolator.
The Desolator charged the Archon and finished it easily.
The Infernal counterstrike killed many Halberdiers, but didn´t really get to the models behind them. The Infernals scored the rightmost square zone.

Mercenaries 0 – Infernals 1

ROUND 3

Alexia dropped a Thrall, which then ran into the zone, but missed the Foreboder.
Damiano feated and hung back in the trench. The Halberdiers charged the two Tormentors to stop countercharges, then Rocinante walked in melee with one and finished it off, using Quick Work to blast Orin and two Cultists. Orin used a meat shield to avoid dying, but that meant his unit died apart from him.
The Nomad charged the Tormentor and dealt some damage to it, then made the stupid decision to try and kill the Arc Node to protect Damiano, but missed it twice.
Stannis casually finished it off and went base to base with the central flag.
The Cavalry rode in, killing the Tormentor thanks to their Flank (Steelhead Halberdier) ability and also riding down Alain Runewood.
This triggered Revelations of the Outer Dark and Agathon cast another Hellmouth, killing a Halberdier and hurting both Riders, though the bonus armour from the feat kept them and the Nomad mostly safe.
The Halberdiers (two of whom had been returned by Dr. Nick, though those didn´t attack of course) dealt some hefty damage to the Desolator, then the Volleygun and Riflemen, once again motivated by some coins, shot it down.
At the end of the turn, the Mercenaries had pushed hard, killing all Infernal heavies and occupying most of the terrain. They also scored two points for the centre flag and the central zone.

Mercenaries 2 – Infernals 1

Orin killed two Halberdiers by blasting them with Annihilation.
The Infernal Gate shot two Halberdiers with its first shot, then three Riflemen as an encore.
The last Cultist on the left (his friend got eaten by Agathon) failed to kill a Halberdier), but Regna killed one in melee, using his essence to cast a Hellfire at his friend.
Regna repositioned into the left zone, then her Shrieker advanced and killed two Halberdiers with its ranged attack.
The Hermit walked into the middle of the round zone and cast Whispers at the Gate. Eilish cast Puppet Master on Agathon, who then killed the single rider with a Dark Fire, then the other two with a Hellmouth, before walking away, muttering about the match-up being lopsided and Mercenaries being cheating gits.
Lynda ran into the central zone to contest it. No scenario elements were scored as the Foreboder could not kill the Thrall Warrior.

Mercenaries 2 – Infernals 1

ROUND 4

Rocinante killed the Foreboder in the left zone, then used Quick Work and Powerful Attack to fire into Orin, who used his last Cultist as a Sacrificial Pawn again.
Thanks to being fully fueled by Damiano, the Nomad hit the Hermit five times to kill him.
Stannis rode down Lynda and the Cultist. In return, he ate a Dark Fire from Agathon.
The Volley Gun unloaded into the Shrieker with Damiano´s last coin dropping it to one damage box, then the Riflemen shot Regna. Even transferring one damage to the Shrieker, she died.
Alexia charged Orin, but he used the souls of his cultists to avoid being killed. At the end of the turn, Damiano´s toe had toed into the central zone
and Dr. Nick scored the flag.

Mercenaries 4 – Infernals 1

Eilish finished Stannis with a Hex Blast and teleported into the central zone.
The Infernal Gate killed all four Riflemen with two shots.
Agathon summoned a Tormentor from the remain of Eilish, then cast a couple of Dark Fires into the Nomad. No points were scored this turn.

Mercenaries 4 – Infernals 1

ROUND 5

Rocinante and the Thrall Warrior destroyed the Infernal objective.
After she had failed to hit Orin the round before and he had returned the favour the turn after, Alexia feinted with her sword to draw out the last soul token on Orin, then trampled him into the dirt.
The Volleygun softened up the Tormentor, then the Nomad wailed on it until it went back from whence it came. Damiano then casually strolled to the central flag, scoring another two points for the Mercenaries, in addition to the other two they scored for the Infernal objective and the left zone.

Mercenaries 8 – Infernals 1

SCENARIO WIN FOR THE MERCENARIES!

AFTERTHOUGHTS

I am a bit of two minds about Agathon. I love what they bring to the table, but there is no armour breaking in the list. Maybe the Soul Stalker should have been a third Tormentor and the summoning button should be firmly locked on Tormentors too, but where is the fun in that?

The Steelheads look a bit like an army from a different age, as they really want to play a fair game in a meta that dislikes fair games. I guess a version that is lighter on actual Steelheads might be better, but again, where is the fun in that?

Standard

´I like my models like my steak, medium rare.´ The High Reclaimer vs Captain Rahera, Terror of the Wailing Seas (Solo Machine) (King of the Hill)

This week, I am going to try a new layout, so I am curious as to how you respond to the new layout or whether I should go back to the old format.

The premise of this battle report is to use some of the less played models that would otherwise rot on the shelf, especially medium base infantry from the Protectorate and Cryx that rarely see the table. Hence the groan-inducing pun in the title.

Menoth wins the roll-off and goes first.

Menite deployment

The list is: The High Reclaimer with a Hierophant and a Judicator, a Bastion Seneschal, High Exemplar Gravus, a Wrack, min choir, 2 max units of Exemplar Cinerators with CA, a max unit of Exemplar Bastions.

Cryx deployment

Cryx is bringing: Rahera with a Kraken and a Blood Priestess, Axiara Wraithblade, Ragman, 2 max units of Black Ogrun Boarding Crew, 2 max units of Black Ogrun Smog Belchers, a unit of Black Ogrun Ironmongers and a unit of Sharde Dirge Seers.

Side view
The High Reclaimer puts Hand of Fate on the Judicator, then the whole Menite army pushes forward.
Rahera casts Escort and Rough Seas.
The Ogrun and the Kraken rush to the centre to take up shooting positions.

ROUND 2

The Judicator gets full focus and has the Hymn of Battle sung on it, then goes to town on the Kraken, even with the range penalty from Rough Seas.
The Exemplars take up screening positions and get ready to weather the storm. Both Cinerator units use their mini-feats to get Reposition 5 and Shield Wall.
Rahera feats and the Ogrun go to town..
One of the Cinerators unfortunately gets dragged into melee with Ragman, who has put up Death Field…
At the end of the feat attacks, the whole right unit of Cinerators has been killed. The one in melee with Ragman is unceremoniously dispatched by Axiara Wraithblade. Rahera then repositions backwards than to the Special Orders Axiara has given her. The orders probably are: ´Don´t die!´
Rahera hasn´t had any charge targets, so she cannot cast Manifest Destiny. This makes the odds of the Kraken being able to kill the Judicator very bad, so it instead walks into the five remaining Cinerators on the left and kills them all, finishing off the last one with its Kill Shot ability. The Ogrun Ironmongers repaired it for 8 boxes before going in.
No side scores any points.

Protectorate 0 – Cryx 0

ROUND 3

Even after allocating and upkeeping Hand of Fate, the High Reclaimer still has a pile of focus points left.
The Shrine shoots the Ogrun twice, killing one on the second shot. The spray misses two Ogrun but kills a Dirge Seer.
The Bastions charge and bring the Kraken down to 5 boxes, as well as killing a Boarding Crew Ogrun.
The Bastion Seneschal then finishes it off.
Casting Ashes to Ashes twice, the High Reclaimer kills two Ogrun and another Dirge Seer, then puts a cloud in front of himself.
The Choir Master sings the Hymn of Battle again and the Choirboys kill each other and the Vassal Mechanic to put some soul token on the Shrine after it shot.
The Judicator sprays and shoots rockets at Rahera, killing the models around her thanks to Sucker! until a lucky rocket deviation hits the Blood Priestess, so Rahera has to take the last shot to the face, taking 8 damage even with Escort up and focus reduction.
No side scores a point, but there is a Judicator-sized problem facing down Rahera.

Protectorate 0 – Cryx 0

Ragman casts Death Field again. The Boarding Crew charges the Kraken, then all the Smog Belchers light it up. In the end, it is the humble Deathripper that brings it down.
The Ogrun who is engaged in melee kills a Bastion.
Still no scoring happens.

Protectorate 0 – Cryx 0

ROUND 4

The High Reclaimer casts Hand of Fate on the Bastions. The Bastion Seneschal heals the Bastions, who have taken a bit of damage at this point, and kills the Ogrun engaging them. Yes, technically they only heal when they activate, but that will happen right now.
The Bastions charge the Deathripper and the Smog Belchers. The first one deals 14 damage to the Deathripper, but not destroying its movement, so the second one manages to actually miss it with the roll above…
… they also put down a Smog Belcher, though she toughs on the first attack.
The Murder Church kills an Ogrun and deals spray damage to the rest of them.
Still no scoring and both sides start running out of models.

Protectorate 0 – Cryx 0

The Dirge Seer charges to eat the Defensive Strike.

One Boarder (?) harpoons a Choir member, the other one shoots the Hierophant and drags him closer, but cannot hit him in melee, so the Deathripper finishes him off.

Rahera charges the last Bastion, loses 5 boxes after focus reduction of the Defensive Strike, but kills the Bastion in return. She puts up Rough Seas and sprints behind the wall.
The second unit of Smog Belchers have also done something this turn, but I am not sure what. However, there are finally points being scored as the Boarding Crew scores the central zone.

Protectorate 0 – Cryx 1

ROUND 5

Gravus charges a Smog Belcher, but the Impact does not deal enough damage and the Ogrun toughs against the charge attack.
The Choir Leader charges Raggedy Mandy in the rear, hits her, then fails to roll high enough to kill her.
The Shrine of the Lawgiver kills one Ogrun and another one with the spray attack.
The High Reclaimer goes ham, killing the Deathripper, Raggedy Mandy and the last member of the Boarding Crew.
He also returns all the dead Choir boys as there is no point not feating.
As no unit is completely in the zone, no points are scored again.

Protectorate 0 – Cryx 1

Rahera puts Black Spot on the High Reclaimer to reduce his DEF, then shoots him with her handcannon. Axiara shoots him too, as does the last Smog Belcher on the right. Finally, the Smog Belcher charge the High Reclaimer and kill him.

Protectorate 0 – Cryx 2

ASSASSINATION VICTORY FOR CRYX!

Standard

´Call yourself a pirate? You don´t even have a ship, only two colossals!´ Captain Bartolo Montador vs Skarre, Admiral of the Black Fleet (Solo Machine)

As I have recently been on a pirate theme, I have decided to continue it in this battle report with a battle between Skarre3 and her pirate ship on one side and Broadsides Bart and his two Blockaders on the other side (note a Galleon stands in for the second Blockader, I have not made enough blogging money yet to afford to buy colossals for one-offs, I am still short, well, all of it as I have not monetised my blog).

The Mercenaries win the roll-off and go first. They bring:

Bartolo Montador: 2 Blockaders, a Talon, 3 Powder Monkeys, 1 Death Archon, First Mate Hawk, a Swamp Gobber River Raider, 2 min units of Press Gangers, the Commodore Cannon, Sharde Dirge Seers.

A big brick of ARM with some support and small units to support them.

Cryx is bringing:

Skarre3 with a Satyxis Blood Priestess, Kharybdis and a Slayer, General Gerlak Slaughterborn, 2 Death Archons, Axiara Wraithblade, Misery Cage, Asphyxious 4 with a Talon, max unit of Trollkin Marauders with Jussika, max unit of Black Ogrun Boarding Crew, Black Ogrun Ironmongers.

A solid list, shameless cribbed off the VTC list website.

Obligatory side view

ROUND 1

Bart puts up Hot-Shot on the left Blockader, Batten Down the Hatches and charges towards the wall.

The rest of the Mercenaries run forward.

Skarre casts Deceleration, Draconic Blessing on the Marauders and Dash, then moves forward. She also creates the mother of all traffic jams in front of her.

Cryx´s forces run as far as they can. The Boarding Crew are stymied by the barrage granted by the Talion Charter theme force.

ROUND 2

A Press Ganger unit comes in from the right, hiding behind a building.

The Powder Monkeys fuel up the right Blockader and both Blockaders focus fire on Kharybdis, both thanks to Deceleration, it stays in play on 8 boxes.

The Archon flies forward with Mortal Fear up, the Dirge Seers put clouds in front of Bart, who cast Batten Down the Hatches again and feats. The Talon runs to contest the left zone, staying barely in Bart´s control range. The Commodore Cannon dings up a Death Archon.

Asphyxious and his servitors run to enable one of the Servitors to get within melee range of the left Blockader and in formation. Asphyxious has to stay back as he would be dropped on his shiny metal ass by Bart´s feat otherwise. Then Kharybdis charges it, followed by some Marauders too.

The Blockader after the beating.

Cryx is coming in hard on the right, but the left looks dangerously overstretched.

Mercenaries 0 – Cryx 0

ROUND 3

The right Galleon is fueled by Bart and some Powder Monkeys and kills Kharybdis with ease…

… then drops the Talon too.

The Press Gangers move forward to score that zone.

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The second unit of Press Gangers comes in from the left, adding a Marauder to their crew.

On the left, the Blockader pummels the Marauders, but being Tough and Steady avoids most of the damage. The Commodore Cannon slams Asphyxious backwards and kills the Misery Cage. The Death Archon charges into the pile, but cannot reach Asphyxious, killing Marauders instead. The Talon also charges forward into the pile.

Bart puts up Batten Down the Hatches and the Dirge Seers hide him.

End of Mercenaries turn 3, they score the right zone.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 0

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The Marauders use their Vengeance moves and attacks kill a few Press Gangers.

Gerlak Slaughterborn kills off most of the Press Gangers, but misses one. Axiara Wraithblade finishes that one off later in the turn.

Asphyxious and the Death Archon drop the Talon and the Death Archon. The Death Archon also does some damage on the Blockader.

Between the Death Archon and the Marauders, the Blockader goes down.

Skarre feats, switches Draconic Blessing to the Slayer and fires her guns into the second Blockader, then repositions thanks to Axiara´s battle plans.

The Boarding Crew charge the second Blockader, doing negligable damage but setting up the Slayer to charge in and blowing up a half of the second Blockader.

End of the round, nobody scores a point.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 0

ROUND 4

The Blockader drops the Slayer and two Boarding Crew, but cannot kill the last one still contesting the zone. One Press Ganger can charge him and another runs up to give Gang, but the Ogrun passes his Tough check.

The Powder Monkey uses Ancilliary Attack, but disappointingly no models are hit.

The Commodore Cannon knocks down Asphyxious again and First Mate Hawk charges him, killing the Iron Lich!

The Dirge Seers try to kill Ogruns, but Ashen Veil blunts their attack and only one dies.

Bart, to the surprise of nobody, casts Batten Down the Hatches.

Nobody scores any scenario elements.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 0

The Death Archon, using the power of geometry, zooms to the one spot where it can hit the Blockader and both Press Gangers but not the Annihilation Servitor that got promoted to leader when Asphyxious died, putting the pirates into the dirt and doing some amount of damage to the colossal, which is on its last legs.

Continuing my casters´ tradition of killing off colossals, Skarre lights up the Blockader with all her guns and, thanks to the ARM debuff provided by the Annihilation Servitor, destroys the colossal.

The Ogrun and the other Death Archon overrun the zone, killing a Powder Monkey (which sets the Cryxian objective on fire), two Dirge Seers and Hawk, but leaving the objective on a few points.

Obviously my soon to be quadrigenarian hands can no longer bear the excitement and they shake too much as I finish the Cryx turn. The Ironmongers are in the right zone, scoring it for Cryx. No other elements are scored.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 1

ROUND 5

Bart is getting tired of this shit and he goes on a murder spree, kiiling an Ogrun and both servitors in melee and also killing another Ogrun with Deadweight to prevent the Archon from attacking him.

The Commodore Cannon sprays over the Death Archon and a Marauder, killing them both.

The Ogrun score the right zone again.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 2

Gerlak takes a swing at the objective, then the Marauders, after getting a 3″ Vengeance movement, kill the Commodore Cannon.

The Death Archon puts up Mortal Fear and flies in Bart´s way as Deadweight weighs it down. Skarre toes the central zone.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 5

ROUND 6

Bart kills the Ogrun in the left zone and the Death Archon, dropping to two Focus unfortunately.

It is all in vain as Cryx scores 2 points to one for the Mercenaries.

Mercenaries 2 – Cryx 7

SCENARIO WIN FOR CRYX!

In a final act of spite and to show that a pirate without own boat is not a real pirate, Skarre3 charges Bartolo, knocks him down with her ship´s ram and then shoots and stabs him until he stops twitching.

AFTERTHOUGHTS

I have to say that I was a bit let down by the Bart list, as it looks stupid and fun on paper, just pushing around huge bases. The addition of the Archon for Mortal Fear should make the colossals even harder to kill. However, maybe their resilience cannot keep up with the amounts of damage some modern armies can put up. To be fair, not every army has whole units that cannot be knocked down.

Skarre on the other hand is still awesome fun to play, provided you don´t accidentally traffic jam your whole army. She feels like a model that can contribute each round and still be protected at the same time.

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How many Death Archons??? Captain Phineas Shae vs Kommandant Irusk (Solomachine Double Feature)

Today I am going to be doing something slightly different by playing the same casters twice in a row, but allowing for list alterations between games. I also wanted to test the new Death Archons, so I decided to run at least one theme that allowed two of them, in this case the Talion Charter Mercenary theme force, and one that might be more obscure but also benefitting from them, in this case the Armoured Corps theme for Khador.

The lists were:

Captain Phineas Shae: Blockader, 2 Death Archons, Bosun Grogspar, First Mate Hawk, Lord Rockbottom, Doc Killingsworth, Stone-Cold Black Bella, 1 Powder Monkey, one max and one min unit of Press Ganger, a max unit of Sea Dog Boarding Crew with 3 Riflemen and Mr. Walls, the Commodore Cannon.

A ton of solos, two large and one small unit and a colossal to back it all up. The Pirates won the roll-off and decided to go first. The min unit of Press Gangers goes into ambush.

Kommandant Irusk: Grey Lord Adjunct, Destroyer, Juggernaut, Death Archon, Man o´War Kovnik, 2 Suppression Tankers, 2 max units of Man o´War Shocktroopers with Officer, max Man o´War Demolition Corps with Dragos Draganovic.

A big bad brick of Man o´War with a solid commander behind them.

The two 3″ templates are the bombardment from the Talion Charter theme benefit. Not really great against heavy armoured Men o´War to be fair.

View from the side

The Man o´War units and Suppression Tankers make their Advance Move.

ROUND 1

Shae casts Storm Rager on the right Death Archon and Phantasm on the Press Gangers.

The Mercenary army tries to take ground and set up for a counterattack once their frontlines have been overrun. Nobody said it was easy being a pirate.

Irusk put up Iron Flesh on the right Shocktroopers, Superiority on the Destroyer (thanks to the +2 inches of range from the Adjunct) and Inhospitable Ground to slow down the Sea Dogs and Press Gangers. He also gives the right Shocktroopers the Special Orders battle plan so they can move 4″ in Shield Wall, then reposition another 3″.

The Destroyer drops a Bombard shot into the Sea Dogs, but all bar one pass their Tough checks. This will be a theme of the game. The Suppression Tankers drop two Covering Fire templates before the Sea Dogs.

ROUND 2

The smaller unit of Press Gangers runs unto the table to tie up the Destroyer and Suppression Tanker.

The Sea Dogs advance around the Covering Fire and achieve very little with their pistols. The Death Archon, now with two Corpse Tokens activates Annihilator, then charges into the Shocktroopers, promptly rolling a triple 1 on his charge attack. Unsurprisingly, it bounces off the ARM23 infantry, killing only one of them, ironically the one it missed with the first attack by rolling 17 on the second swing.

The Commodore Cannon tries to dislodge a few Man O´War, but doesn´t even hurt them with some very poor rolls.

Stymied by the Covering Fire, the Sea Dogs press on to claim more board space and force the Khadorans into the threat range of their colossal and Archons.

After upkeeping Iron Flesh for the Kommandant, the Adjunct decides to prove his worth by using his frost shotgun to kill two Press Gangers and knocking two more down.

With two Focus from Irusk, the Destroyer walks behind the Press Gangers and kills the Lass and two Press Gangers, one of whom was knocked down.

Never one to refuse free gifts, Irusk shoots the last knocked down Press Ganger and feats. He also gives the left Shocktrooper unit Pathfinder. He also puts Battle Lust on those Shocktroopers.

The Shocktrooper Officer rolls the double 4 to freeze the Archon, so the other easily kill it off. The unit is still in Shield Wall.

Bulkhead kills three Press Gangers with his Shotgun, missing one twice though.

The Death Archon uses Annihilator and charges forward, killing the Lass in the first swing, uses Spectral Flicker to move forward (I played this before the ruling that you had to spend a corpse token before attacking to make the place after the attack) and kills Hawk as well as dealing some damage to the opposing Death Archon. The Sea Dogs pass quite a few 4+ No Knockdown Tough rolls here. The Archon puts up Mortal Fear.

The Shocktroopers charge and kill the Death Archon. They also deal 15 points of damage to the Blockader. The Suppression Trooper killed a Press Ganger and also chipped in some damage on the Archon.

The Armoured Corps is forcing its way through the centre, but no points are scored.

Mercenaries 0 – Khador 0

ROUND 3

The Blockader kills the Death Archon and a disappointing one Shocktrooper with its 5 attacks and an Ancilliary from the Powder Monkey. 4+ Toughs are bad on both sides.

Shae casts Storm Rager on Bella and shoots a Shocktrooper, who ignores the shot. Bella then charges and makes her Blood Reaper Attack, killing one Shocktrooper, while two others tough.

With a lot of effort, the Sea Dogs kill a single Shocktrooper.

The Commodore Cannon drops another Shocktrooper and forces another Tough check.

Still no points are scored and things are looking grim for the Mercenaries.

Mercenaries 0 – Khador 0

The Suppression Tanker cuts through the Sea Dogs.

The Destroyer lobs a shell into the Sea Dog, then the Shocktroopers kill the last two Sea Dogs.

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The Juggernaught kills Bella.

The Demolition Corps flattens the Blockader and the Suppression Tanker kills the last Press Ganger.

Irusk runs behind the building in the right zone so that he cannot be attacked by the last few pirates.

Seeing the writing on the wall, the Mercenaries run away.

KHADOR WINS BY CONCESSION!

GAME TWO

NOTE: The second game took place a week later, after VTC lists had been published. As the pirates had had a rather disappointing showing the first time around, I decided to use a modified list, based on a VTC list I found to run instead.

The Khadoran list is still the same and they deploy first this time around. This is after the advance moves.

Shae´s list this time:

Phineas Shae: Galleon, 2 Death Archons, 3 Powder Monkeys, 2 Swamp Gobber River Raiders, First Mate Hawk, Lord Rockbottom, a min unit of Press Gangers, Lady Aiyana and Master Holt, max Sharde Pirates and Officer, max Sea Dog Boarding Crew with 2 Riflemen and Mr. Walls.

Sideview: confusingly before advance moves.

The awkward moment when I deploy Aiyana and Holt after all other deployment is over…

ROUND 1

Never one to be cowardly, Irusk casts Inhospitable Ground, Iron Flesh on the Demolition Corps, which also gets Pathfinder and Superiority on the Destroyer, then charges towards the Galleon. He has his eyes on the biggest prize it seems.

The red onslaught. Note that the right Suppression Tanker has put down a Covering Fire template in front of the Demolition Corps. Irusk is also safely nestled behind multiple layers of Man o´War troopers.

Fortune favours the bold or so Shae thinks, feating bottom of one and casting Coup de Main (that e at the end of Coupe is a mistake) to speed up the pirates. He also drops Storm Rager on the Archon next to him.

With the No Quarter mini-feat and Overtake plus boosted melee attack rolls from a coin as well gaining an additional damage die from First Mate Hawk, the Sea Dogs surge forward, killing three Shocktroopers on the left …

… and two on the right. The Death Archons collect corpses.

The remaining pirate forces push forward, but trying to stay out of charge ranges if possible.

ROUND 2

The right Shocktroopers show their worth by missing two attacks and the third one being negated by a Tough check. The Suppression Tanker exacts bloody vengeance by spraying down four Sea Dogs, though one toughs.

The Adjunct tries to spray a gap to open room for the Death Archon, but misses the one that can actually make a free strike against the Archon.

The free strike misses of course and the Archon drops into position, killing Hawk and a Sea Dog on the first swing, as well as damaging the opposing Archon with a boosted attack.

The second swing finishes off Walls, who had Toughed on the first one as well as a Sea Dog and knocks down another Sea Dog. It also scratches the Archon some more. The Death Archon puts up Mortal Fear.

Irusk puts up his ´Do I have to do everything myself?´ face, shoots the offending Sea Dog that holds up traffic, gives the Demolition Corps Pathfinder and uses his Feat.

The Demolition Corps uses its mini-feat Bonds of Brotherhood to spread out damage if necessary, charge 9″ thanks to the Kovnik giving them Desperate Pace and kill the prone Sea Dog, knock down a Sharde Pirate and also, as a little aside, kill the Death Archon on their right.

The Destroyer lobs a shell into the Sharde Pirates, killing two while 3 Tough. For heaven´s sake, it is only on a 5+!!!

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Bulhead kills three Sea Dogs and nearly a Shocktrooper. Who the hell gave that guy a P+S 16 shotgun? #powercreep

The Khadorans put up a solid wall of red steel, let´s see how the Mercenaries will respond.

Lady Aiyana for once manages to hit a 3+ and puts Kiss of Liliss on the Demolition Corps. Holt celebrates that rare occurence with a shot into the air, so only one of his two pistols actually does damage.

Rockbottom tosses a coin at the Sharde Pirates to make them all stand up.

The Pirates charge the Demolition Corps and between Assault shots and their charge attacks, they drop one, as well as forcing quite a few Tough checks. They also kill one of their own, but thems the breaks.

Missing its first boosted attack roll on the Death Archon, the Blocader needs all its Focus to kill the Archon, then pummels a Demolition Corps Man o´War into the dust with an Ancilliary Attack.

The last Death Archon kills Dragos and two Shocktroopers, then puts up Mortal Fear.

The Press Gangers charge the Suppression Tanker and Juggernaught, but do little real damage. No points are scored as all scenario elements are contested.

Khador 0 – Mercenaries 0

ROUND 3

The last Demolition Corps soldier and the two Shocktroopers work together to kill a Sharde Pirate. What value!

The Destroyer charges and kills the last Death Archon.

The Adjunct sprays down the two Press Gangers that have engaged the Suppression Tanker.

The Suppression Tanker drops the Swamp Gobber that shot him and jumped behind him.

Irusk puts Battle Lust on the Shocktroopers and gave them Pathfinder, then the Kovnik gives them +2 Speed and they charge the Galleon. The Juggernaught trampled over the Press Gangers, killing one and knocking down two.

Still no scoring, but both sides are running out of models quickly. Can the Galleon deal with the Juggernaught next turn before the Destroyer can charge it?

Khador 0 – Mercenaries 0

The Powder Monkeys use an Ancilliary Attack to kill the Shocktrooper Officer, then fuel up the Galleon.

The Sharde Pirates kill the last Demolition Corps and whale ineffectively at the Shocktroopers in Shield Wall.

The Galleon kills the Juggernaught.

With the Juggernaught down, Shae puts Storm Rager on himself and moves into the right circular zone.

Khador 0 – Mercenaries 1

ROUND 4

The Suppression Tanker guns down two Sharde Pirates.

The Shocktroopers kill the last one, controlling the left zone for Khador.

The Destroyer fired a boosted shot into the Galleon, then the Kovnik and Bulkhead open up on it too, dropping it to 3 damage boxes in the end.

True to his reputation as a gloryhound, Irusk takes aim and finishes off the Galleon.

As an encore, he casts Airburst on the three Powder Monkeys, killing them all, while also re-enacting the phrase ´Have a plan blow up in your face´ as two of them land on top of him with their Catastrophic Explosion rule, costing him two focus points to prevent most of the damage, but ending up on fire, as is the Kovnik next to him.

(picture missing here): The last two Shocktroopers charge the objective, destroying it and also being able to redirect an attack into Lord Rockbottom and killing him. The Suppression Tanker on the right runs through the forest into the right circular zone to contest it.

Khador 3 – Mercenaries 1

Shae charges the Suppression Tanker, finishing it off. Lady Aiyana casts Kiss on the Shocktroopers in the centre and Master Holt kills the Officer.

Khador 5 – Mercenaries 2

ROUND 5

The Destroyer stays at 12.1 inches of Master Holt to avoid being hit by a Quick Draw shot, then lobs a shell onto him, killing him and Aiyana.

Looking pleadingly at Irusk, the Kovnik asks: ´May I?´ The Kommandant nods and the Kovnik runs to slam into Captain Shae, but the nimble warcaster avoids being hit by the lumbering Man o´War.

Khador controls all three zones to win the game.

Khador 8 – Mercenaries 2

SCENARIO WIN FOR KHADOR!

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Suffer not the Bane Witch to live! High Exemplar Cyrenia vs Bane Witch Agathia (Solo Machine)

Another week, another game. Well technically two weeks as I missed last week due to playing quite a lot on Wartable to prepare for VTC in a month.

As I really enjoyed Agathia last time, I wanted to play her again. To oppose her, I brought a Cyrenia list with a big unit of Idrian Skirmishers and a bucketload of Paladins. The plan is to push up with Idrians, fuel up all the solos and jacks with their souls and their deaths, then smack the Cryxians hard. Agathia´s plan was to sit it out with high armour and up to -4 to enemy damage rolls.

The forces were:

Cyrenia with 2 Sanctifiers and a Dervish, High Paladin Dartan Vilmon, a Paladin, 2 Champions of the Order of the Wall, 2 Menite Archons, Hand of Silence, a Wrack, a min Choir, a max unit of Idrians plus CA, 2 units of Initiates.

Agathia brought the same force as last time.

DEPLOYMENT

Cyrenia rolled a 4 to Agathia´s 3 and decided to go first. Agathia chose the side with the building to hide behind.

Cyrenia deployed behind a screen of Idrians, with strong solos on each side and trying to ensure that all of the models that benefit from a model dying have multiple Idrians in effect range.

Agathia deployed in a solid ball of death with the Bane Knights poised to absorb the first charge.

ROUND 1

Cyrenia put Inviolable Resolve on the right Archon, then cast Dash on herself, advanced, put up a Rock Wall and repositioned thanks to her Special Order battle plan.

Thanks to Dash, the Menite forces rushed up the table and threatened to alpha really hard next turn.

Agathia and the Banes used Apparition, then cast Hellwrought on Barathrum. She moved up to extend her Death Shroud more aggressively than last game. Darragh cast Mortal Fear, then repositioned further up.

The Banes used their mini-feat then moved forward. All in all, the Cryx forces still stayed in a compact formation. Only Severa ran to a flank.

ROUND 2

Cyrenia upkept Inviolable Resolve on the Menite Archon, moved up a bit, raised a new Rock Wall, cast Dash and feated. She also took a Focus from the Wrack, which didn´t explode. The plan was to ram her forces as deep into the Cryxian lines as possible.

The Archon with Inviolable Resolve charged the blue Toro and ate a Countercharge from the turquoise one and a Defensive Strike from the rearmost Bane. Turns out that DEF15 is not that great and they both connected, doing 11 damage to the Archon. It then swung its flail, killing a Bane Knight and doing moderate damage to both Toros.

Seeing as they were hit by a -4 debuff on damage, the Idrians decided that they were most useful as sacrificial lambs, so 4 of them died to Defensive Strikes from the Banes, which let the heavies behind them move closer and also made both Menite Archons angrier and filling up Hand of Silence with souls.

The Menite Archon killed 3 Bane Knights and even dealt some damage to Barathrum, but the damage reduction hurt its output a lot. Hand of Silence sprayed into the melee, setting Barathrum, Darragh Wrathe and a Bane on fire. Well, actually it was Agathia but she Suckered it to the Bane.

Don´t put Baby, erm I mean Agathia, in a corner. The Menite forces constricted the Cryx forces in their own deployment zones.

Seeing how the flag Severa wanted to take was now contested by three Initiates of the Order, she aimed at the Sanctifier, shot it twice, then hit it with the Chain Attack Vortex and pulled the Archon and Idrians in, killing the Idrian grunt and the Chieftain. The Archon and warjack were fine.

Agathia allocated to both the Inflictor and Barathrum, then feated to give the whole force Stealth and Ghost Walk. Both Toros were allocated Focus and the blue one walked around the Archon, then started wailing on the Sanctifier, surprisingly killing it with its 5 attacks.

The second Toro killed the Menite Archon with a boosted attack and also killed an Idrian.

Asphyxious hung back on two focus, while his Annihilation Servitors killed two more Idrians.

The Inflictor spent all three focus to kill off the second Menite Archon. It then teleported to the side.

Barathrum killed the Sanctifier and teleported forward.

The Cryxian counterpunch had hit hard. Both sides controlled their zones, scoring a point a piece.

Cyrenia 1 – Agathia 1

ROUND 3

Cyrenia put Positive Charge on the Dervish and allocated two to it. The Paladin solos and Initiates start clearing out the last Banes with their Vengeance and regular attacks.

With its way open, the Dervish moved through the Cryx lines and ended up killing Darragh Wrathe to improve the Menites´ odds of killing some heavies.

The Champions and Dartan charged bu,t even with Mortal Fear being gone, the heavies shrugged off their attacks for the most part.

Plenty of Cryx models were removed from the table, but they still had 4 functioning heavy warjacks. Both sides again score their home zones.

Cyrenia 2 – Agathia 2

Barathrum, aided by the Satyxis Blood Priestess smashed the Dervish and then murdered Dartan Vilmon as an encore.

The Toro murdered the Champion of the Order of the Wall to make room for Asphyxious.

The second Toro killed the Paladin on the rightmost flag.

Asphyxious used the gap opened by the Toro to claim the soul of Hand of Silence and all the other souls that the Hand could no longer protect.

The Inflictor unhorsed, then killed the Champion on the right, though he managed to pass his Tough check twice before dying.

With Severa on the leftmost flag and both sides again scoring their zones, the score went to

Cyrenia 3 – Agathia 4

ROUND 4

The Choir ran to engage the Toros to keep them from Countercharging.

In spite, Cyrenia tried to at least kill Asphyxious, but to no avail.

Cyrenia 3 – Agathia 6

Asphyxious unceremoniously dispatched the upstart High Exemplar, even surviving her Dying Breath attack.

Cyrenia 3 – Agathia 8

ASSASSINATION AND SCENARIO WIN FOR CRYX!

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Toro, Toro, Toro! Lt. Crosse, Resistance Fighter vs Bane Witch Agathia (Solo Machine)

Greeting, wargamers! In today´s episode of Solo Machine, I am playing the Bunkers scenario and the two lists facing off are the new and improved Bane Witch Agathia in an unconventional list and Lt. Crosse, but not as a Mercenary warcaster but as an Infernal warcaster in the Hearts of Darkness theme.

Agathia is in a strange list that does something Cryx can rarely do, with the possible exception of Asphyxious 3, namely to present an armour skew. I had fiddled around with the list a bit when I came across this build by either Tim Bossuyt or Blake Hooper on the Facebook Warmachine General page. As it was close to my version (I had it originally in Black Industries, but agree that the MAT and damage buff from Scourge is worth losing a bit of resilience against guns), I decided to merge them.

Bane Witch Agathia with Satyxis Blood Priestess, Barathrum, Inflictor and Deathripper, Darragh Wrathe, Severa Blacktide, Asphyxious the Sanctified with 2 Toros, Bane Knights (max) with Officer, Black Ogrun Ironmongers.

The Gastonne list was more mixed arms, bringing some Steelheads to have cheap Shield Guards that can recur and also serve as sacrifices for Regna (though I cannot recur those Steelheads), some cavalry to punch through the enemy, Howlers as secondary beaters and a solo package.

Lt. Crosse, Resistance Fighter with a Mariner, a Toro and a Talon, Anastasia di Bray, Alexia, Mistress of the Witchfire, Valin Hauke, Fallen Knight, Sergeant Nicolas Verendrye, Hermit of Henge Hold, Great Princess Regna Gravnoy, Umbral Guardian, Eilish Garrity, the Dark Seeker, Steelhead Halberdiers (max), Steelhead Heavy Cavalry (max), Howlers (max).

DEPLOYMENT

Cryx won and decided to go first. The Infernals chose the side with the building in the deployment zone to shield the caster and support staff and also dropped Lifebound on the Halberdiers and Dauntless Resolve on the Cavalry before the game started.

Cryx deployed in a deathball in the centre, trying to overlap Death Shroud and Mortal Fear.

The Infernals mirror the deployment to bring their melee models into combat as soon as possible.

ROUND 1

Agathia and the Banes used Apparition, she then cast Deathwrought on Barathrum and Vanished a bit further up. Barathrum advanced and Dug In. For the rest, all Cryxian forces ran their full distance to claim board space.

The Infernals run forward, trying to stay out of charge range or line of sight of most models, though the Howlers on the side moved a bit further up to lure out the Toros under Asphyxious. Regna summoned a Shrieker and for the rest, people just go further up.

ROUND 2

Severa Blacktide tried to open a gap for Barathrum to trample through, but the first shot is intercepted by the Umbral Guardian, so she attempted to shoot it again, only for that shot to be taken by a Halberdier. The soul goes to Alexia as she is closer than Gastonne, then Severa uses Gun and Run to run to the flag.

The Bane Knights charged in, killing the Umbral Guardian and a Halberdier. The Umbral also killed a Bane with its Defensive Strike. One of the Banes ran to engage the Toro on the side. The Bane Knights then repositioned and the Officer used the Mini-Feat to give them Defensive Strike.

The Toros charged and killed three Howlers, even after Tough checks.

Barathrum was fully loaded by Agathia, who also cast Ghost Walk on it. It then trampled over two Halberdiers (giving one soul to Alexia to fill her up and then another one to Gastonne). It then hit and killed Alexia thanks to the Gang Fighter bonus from the Bane Knight and finished its activation by killing a Cavalryman. It then used Drag Below to retreat and Dig In.

The Inflictor stayed behind to score the home zone and the rest of the Cryxian forces moved in to block the progress of the Infernals. Darragh put up Mortal Fear and stayed behind a cloud Asphyxious had dropped. Both Darragh and Asphyxious can be shield guarded by the Inflictor.

Between Vengeance attacks, the Hermit Whispering at the Gate, a boosted shot by the Mariner and some charges by Halberdiers and two Heavy Cavalrymen, one Toro went down and the second one dropped to 9 boxes, though crucially the Shield still functioned. Gastonne had to cast Ghost Walk on the Halberdiers to let them disengage from the mini-feated Bane Knights. He also shot at the Toros for some damage.

The Talon switched to the flank to free up the Toro, which then ran back to the centre where it should have been round one to be honest.

Anastasia ambushed behind the Deathripper and easily hit it, but only dealt 4 damage despite rolling 4 dice to damage. It evened out the good damage rolls on the other flank I guess.

Valin Hauke also charged into the second Toro but had a mild case of rubber lance syndrome, dealing 0 damage on a charge at dice-6 due to Darragh. The Shrieker boosted a shot into some Bane Knights, but the shot and the leaps also bounced off the Bane Knights. Dice really went cold here after some great rolls early in the turn.

The Defensive Strike mini-feat really hurt the Halberdiers, as they couldn´t advance into the Bane Knights, being potentially hit on 5s and automatically dying to the strikes.

The Mercenaries score their zone, the forces of Cryx score their zone and the central flag with Severa.

Cryx 2 – Infernals 1

ROUND 3

Asphyxious allocated two to the Toro, then his Annihilation Servitors charge the Halberdiers, killing two. Asphyxious and Gastonne split the souls evenly due to proximity.

Agathia feated and fell back into the zone as the Inflictor was needed elsewhere.

The Deathripper bit off Anastasia´s head and then teleported three inches due to the feat.

The Bane Knights dropped three Halberdiers, then repositioned to open charge lanes for Robert Barathrum and Darragh Wrathe.

Barathrum charged the Toro, thanks to Ghost Walk from the feat, and brought it down to eight damage boxes. Unfortunately, the Shield system held all the way to the last attack.

The Inflictor dropped a Heavy Horse and a Howler, then feat teleported to the side.

After getting repaired by the Ironmonger, the Toro killed another horseman and the last Howler, but unfortunately left Valin Hauke on one damage box.

Darragh rode down the last Halberdier and put up Mortal Fear before repositioning 3 inches.

The writing was on the wall as Cryx scored two to nothing for the Infernals.

Cryx 4 – Infernals 1

The Hermit Whispered again and the Mariner Threshered down the Toro and an Annihilation Servitor, then went ham on the Inflictor, leaving it on 8 boxes.

The Shrieker disappointingly only killed one Bane Knight with its Shriek, so Regna had to move in and kill another one.

Eilish cast Puppet Master on Gastonne, then Gastone loaded up his soul-powered gun and spent three souls to make it go full Voltron. He shot Asphyxious three times, dealing moderate damage each time even after the focus reduction for the damage. Before the fourth shot, Asphyxious was on 9 boxes at dice off 7 thanks to Darragh´s aura. Turns out the dice wanted him to die. ´I guess I drop the five then.´ (Yes, I realised after the game that Asphyxious would have had Stealth due to Agathia´s feat, but it didn´t really change the outcome of the game).

Hauke tried to kill off the Inflictor, but left it on three boxes and with that, the game was over as the Infernal forces could not clear their zone (the Toro dealt massive damage to Barathrum, but Hellwrought´s ARM buff kept it going), not to mention the Bane Knights all around it) and Cryx scored another two points.

Cryx 6 – Infernals 1

SCENARIO WIN FOR CRYX!

AFTERTHOUGHTS

The selling point of the Cryx forces was to be an armour skew and I never really managed to bring the full -4 swing into play. Nevertheless, both the warjacks and the Bane Knights absorbed far more damage than I would have expected from Cryx models. It was a fun list and one I will probably keep in the back pocket for the time after the VTC.

Gastonne´s list still looks robust and losing Alexia to a trample was a hard blow, as was being caught off guard by the Bane Knights´ mini-feat as the Halberdiers are perfect targets for it.

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Solomachine: The weapon (masters) of choice: Goreshade the Cursed vs General Ossrum

In this week´s battle report, I wanted to face off an old classic of MkIII competitive Warmachine, General Ossrum, against a caster that hasn´t really made his mark on MkIII so far, Goreshade the Cursed, or Goreshade2 as he is colloquially known. One reason is that I am playing a lot of Mercenaries right now and also have just painted quite a few Riot Quest models, as seen in last week´s game, so Ossrum and his new friend Stone Lord Guvul Godor (or Stone Lord GG for the cool kids) would be a perfect fit for that. I have also just finished painting quite a few Cryx warcasters, one of which was Goreshade2.

Ossrum´s list was: General Ossrum with a Driller, a Gunner, a Blaster and a Basher, 2 Hammerfall Siege Crawlers, Harlowe Holdemhigh, 2 Artillery Corps and two max units of Forge Guard, one of which has the Stone Lord.

It is a classical Dwarf list, lots of heavily armoured weaponmasters backed up by recursion, even more now with Guvul Godor, and some high-powered artillery.

Goreshade brought: 2 Deathrippers, 2 Stalkers (the 28-point special), Bane Lord Tartarus, 3 Machine Wraiths, a Soul Trapper, two max units of Bane Knights with Officer, one max unit of Bane Warriors with CA and a max unit of Bane Riders.

MOOOAR BANEZ! with a solo package that can alternatively be summoned or sacrificed for the feat.

DEPLOYMENT

The Dwarves won the roll-off and decided to go first, what with Ossrum having three upkeeps. I forgot the two inches of extra deployment for them, but simply added plus two inches to their first turn move.

The Dwarves being imaginative and deploying in a straight line. Each unit has a Battle Engine nestled into the formation and each Engine could also reinforce the other side´s unit if necessary.

The Banes deploy very symmetrically after putting down their two four-inch clouds to block off the centre. The Stalkers stalk forward without a care in the world because who is going to hit a Stealthed model turn 1?

ROUND 1

Ossrum drops Fire for Effect on the right Siege Crawler and Snipe on Harlowe.

The Dwarves run forward, their heavies trample and then reposition to be faster than if they ran. The left engine uses its Periscope to remove Stealth from Stalker II and Harlowe moves up and tries to shoot it, but unfortunately he missed 3 times and does only 3 damage the one time he hits.

Apparently the Cryxian force moves so fast that I completely forget to take detailled pictures and also shake the camera too much. What should be said is that Goreshade puts Mirage on the Bane Warriors, which hide behind the central clouds to use Apparition to place into them and then charge through them next turn, and Curse of Shadows on the Siege Crawler on the right of the photograph. For the rest, the Banes brace for impact as Ossrum´s Dwarves can be deceptively fast for SPD 4 models.

ROUND 2

The Crawler with Fire for Effect and Curse of Shadows charges the Deathripper that arced the Curse onto it. It then lets rip into the Bane Knights in front of it and kills 4.

Ossrum toggles Fire for Effect to the second engine, feat and sits on one focus point, having upkept two spells.

The Spray Bunny sprays down three Bane Knights and the officer loses his lance when he sees that.

The Gun Bunny shots a Bane Knight on the left, then Stone Lord GG and his gang go in, thanks to his Desperate Pace battle plan. One of them gets knocked down and one dies to a Defensive Strike as those Banes activated their mini-feat last round.

They end up killing three Knights in return, Set Defense actually preventing a hit that would have slammed a Bane into the rear lines.

Harlowe moves to the flag and shots the Machine Wraith on the extreme left flank. The Siege Crawler moves up and kills more Bane Knights, though crucially one of his shots misses and scatters onto a Bane Rider, dealing one damage to trigger Vengeance.

Both heavies run into the Bane Warriors to face tank their attacks at ARM22 and the Forge Guard on the Dwarven right screen off their home square zone. The Artillery Corps both tragically miss and scatter into empty areas or ARM18+ models that don´t care about blast damage.

Thanks to Mirage, the Bane Warriors can actually step back from the heavies, then gain momentum to charge them and the Crawler with Curse of Shadows together with a Stalker with three focus and the last few Bane Knights on that flank. Tactician Bane is a godsend here as it lets each Bane charge into a position where they have moved at least three inches to gain boosted damage. The Deathripper disengaged and took a free strike that left it on two boxes (combined with the damage from the Siege Crawler´s charge and gatling gun) and only Movement still intact. The combined Banes and Stalker kill the Siege Crawler despite it having 40 boxes and ARM23 during the feat.

With a little help from Goreshade and Bane Lord Tartarus, the two heavies also fall to the Banes´ cursed blades. Goreshade also puts Curse of Shadows on the second engine and camps one, but stays behind the clouds.

The Bane Knights open a gap into the Dwarven line, then elegantly reposition out of the way.

A single Bane Warrior tags the engine to apply Dark Shroud (and do some charge damage), then the Bane Riders and Stalker charge in and put down the mighty Siege Crawler too.

The Cavalry repositions to contest Harlowe´s flag as well as engaging the Artillery Corps and neither side scores a point.

Mercenaries 0 – Cryx 0

ROUND 3

The Gun Bunny braves a free strike, then shoots and kills the Bane Rider engaging the artillery.

The Stone Lord sadly only brings back one Forge Guard, but they still mess up a Rider and some Knights.

On the Dwarven left, the one Bane Knight engaging six Forge Guard and the Banes´ Defensive Strike mini-feat blunt the efficiency of the Forge Guard unit but they still kill a few more Banes.

Harlowe drops another Rider and damages the Stalker severely. This also frees his flag.

The Artillery Corps wipes out the rest of the Bane Riders to avoid feat shenanigans. Harlowe scores his flag, nothing else is scored.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 0

The Bane Warriors start killing Forge Guard on the Cryxian left. They also damage the two light warjacks, but the great damage grids of the Rhulic lights leave their systems mostly intact. The Stalker also jumps in and kills two Forge Guard.

The Machine Wraiths charge and one kills a Dwarf while the other one hits the Blaster and turns it around to unengage the models around it.

On the right, a full loaded Stalker jumps behind the Forge Guard, killing Harlowe and two Forge Guards, then the Bane Knights finish off the other from the front. The Deathripper chills in the zone to score it.

Goreshade has a short but efficient feat turn, turning a Machine Wraith that was in a bad position and the Soul Trapper into two Machine Wraiths, one of whom appears onto the flag on the right that the Banes have just cleared and the other one pops up close enough to the other flag that the Stalker has freed for it.

Cryx now controls both flags and the square zone on their right, giving them 3 points to nil for the Dwarves.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 3

ROUND 4

Ossrum charges the Stalker, gets a double 4 for the Critical Decapitation and one-shots the Cryx light. He then casts Stranglehold to kill the Machine Wraith as Warcasters don´t contest, so it would have scored a point otherwise.

The Forge Guard fight on bravely, killing the Stalker, the Machine Wraith and a Bane Warrior.

Despite the best efforts of the Dwarves, there are still too many Banes left and Cryx scores the right square again.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 4

The Bane Warriors mini-feat to replenish their ranks, then go on a rampage, killing both light warjacks and more Forge Guard.

Goreshade activates, casts Curse of Shadows on Ossrum, then uses Abyssal Gate to kill the left Artillery Corps.

The last two Bane Knights charge Ossrum, but very anti-climactically both miss him.

Nevertheless, the Deathripper that has been on two boxes since round 2 limps into the now empty left zone, the left flag is uncontested once more and the right Deathripper scores its third consecutive point.

Mercenaries 1 – Cryx 7

SCENARIO WIN FOR CRYX!

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Fun Machine: Revenge of the Riot Quest models: Feora the Forsaken vs Ashlynn d´Elyse, Queen´s Blade

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).

DEPLOYMENT

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.

ROUND 1

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.

ROUND 2

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?

ROUND 3

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.

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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!

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Solomachine: Steadfast Siege Striking Sneaky Skarre: Siege 2 vs Skarre 2 (King of the Hill)

Hello and welcome to another episode of ´How to do unto yourself what others cannot do to you due to the pandemic´ or Solomachine. This week I was in a real mood to play some lists I have been theorycrafting for ages, but never got round playing so far.

In the blue corner, we have a caster I have had since he got released way back in 2017, but never got round to, the Assault Marine Sergeant with Thunderhammer, erm…. Colonel Markus ´Siege´Brisbane! He is usually run in Gravediggers, but I always had this idea of running him with a metric fuckton of small-based Storm Knights, use the feat either defensively to dig in and stay safe from guns for an important turn or offensively to add another 3 inches to their melee threat.

So my list is: Siege2 with Squire, Triumph, Hammersmith, 2 full units of Stormblades with all the accoutrements, a full and a min unit of Stormguard, Savio, a Stormblade Captain, Ser Dreyfus and Rhupert, of course in the Storm Division theme.

As I said, the idea is to run at the enemy, stay reasonably safe with Dig In if necessary, then use Fury on a model with an actual weapon and not a Trencher with a bayonnet and see what survives. Siege can do work, then retreat or just be a buff bot that camps on a hill. This would also be a good idea to run Storm Division before the promised update to see how bad infantry Storm Knights actually are.

In the green corner, we have another perennial ´maybe I should give her a go´caster, Skarre2, the bane of my MkII tournament career and the tricksiest caster in Cryx.

Her list is: Skarre2 with Dr Stygius, Kharybis, Robert Barathrum, a Deathripper and a Slayer, Asphyxious4 with an Inflictor, a Void Archon, Axiara Wraithblade, a full unit of Satyxis Raiders with a Sea Witch and a Misery Cage.

A very compact list that has Admonition, the feat and Gaspy´s clouds to stay alive on the way in, then leverages Black Spot to clear chaff and the multiple instances of Dark Shroud plus Gang Fighter to kill harder targets.

DEPLOYMENT

Cygnar won the roll-off to go first and decided to go first because if you have a caster with 4 upkeeps playing another caster with 4 upkeeps, going first is good. Both sides chose the Treasure Chest objective as the objectives are a bit out of the way to give multiple rounds of repairing or Pathfinder.

Cygnar goes wide, but a bit less on the side with the building.

Cryx went more centrally, refusing the flank with Triumph and trying to use Asphyxious and his battlegroup to eliminate the weaker Cygnaran flank. Gaspy could also use clouds to screen that side of the central circle.

View from the top. I have finally realised that using two sets of dice and tape measures makes it easier to play when playing both sides.

ROUND 1

Siege put Hallowed Avenger on the Hammersmith and built a hill, then jumped on top of that hill and dropped a Rocket Pod. The rest of the Cygnaran forces runs closer, staying out of range of channeled Blood Rains (photo missing)

Skarre put Admonition on Kharybdis and Death Ward on Barathrum, which also was the first model on a table full of Cygnar models to dig in. I guess the lack of Trenchers made the Cygnarans less happy to shovel.

The Cryxian forces ran up, but trying to stay safe. Gaspy dropped two clouds, though that made him slower as he couldn´t run that way. Another reason why Cygnar went first.

ROUND 2

Triumph shot at a Satyxis, but missed.

I could get a few Stormguards into the Slayer and Savio plus more Stormguards into the Inflictor if I feated now, so that is what happened. Siege upkept Hallowed Avenger, dropped the hill and took back the Rocket Pod, then cast Fury on the left Stormguards, put up a new hill and stepped on it, dropped a new pod and feated. This is the army´s position after the feat moves.

The Stormguard went in, easily felling the Slayer and killing two Satyxises, but only giving one soul to the Void Archon as Electro Leaps don´t give souls. Triumph moved up and shot Kharybdis, doing 8 damage.

In the centre, the Stormblades killed two Satyxises and moved up to block. On the right, Savio whiffed his charge attack, rolling a 6 on 4d6 for 0 damage, but he and two Stormguards still took out the Stinger arm on the Inflictor.

The blue wave crashing into the dark green Cryxian lines.

Skarre took two damage to upkeep both spells. She allocated two to each heavy and activated first, feating on herself, Asphyxious, Barathrum, Kharybdis and the Void Archon (gotta love ´friendly model´feats).

She then took a corpse token from the Misery Cage, turning it into a focus token and cast Black Spot on the Furied Stormguard. To finish her activation, she shot two of them due to Black Spot. This also put a corpse back onto the Misery Cage.

The good Dr Stygius healed the five damage from the feat.

The Void Archon played its deadly game of rope-a-dope, jumping out to kill four Stormblades between its sprays and melee attacks, then jumped back behind the forest, full on souls again.

After a lot of tentacles flailing around, Kharybdis had killed six Stormguard without even using the allocated focus. I guess I need to work on efficient allocation.

The Inflictor, having received two focus from Asphyxious, killed Savio with a boosted shield attack, then killed the two Stormguard in melee. Asphyxious and his murder bots Flickered, then charged in to kill another three Stormguard, leaving only one alive in the zone.

The Raiders charged in and killed a few Stormblades. The Sea Witch put up Force Barrier and Axiara gave the unit Dodge before running behind the wall. One of the Raiders ran a long way through the forest to get within two inches of the Hammersmith. Then Barathrum walked to the Hammersmith and spiked its rolls to lay waste to the Cygnaran heavy. Unfortunately, it could not use Drag Below as it needed all its attacks to kill the construct.

No points were scored but both sides were now fully engaged.

Cygnar 0 – Cryx 0

ROUND 3

Triumph missed Kharybdis (which was also in its own cloud, but I am still missing my other set of AoEs, so with Siege on a hill, there was no 4″ cloud marker left) with its Rapid Fire shot. The last two Stormguard charge Kharybdis, but it used Admonition to move away, so they redirected their attacks onto the objective and dealt 10 damage to it.

The left Stormblades killed the objective and a Satyxis, but the other one dodged away. With the zone now clear, Triumph moved in and shot at Kharybdis, doing another decent chunk of damage.

The Captain finished her off, but missed the Quick Work shot. That guys needs a rework.

Siege leapt into action, hitting and knocking down Barathrum, then putting Fury on the right Stormblades. Due to the feat, he couldn´t charge Barathrum and had to jump over his own Stormblades. On the other hand, the Stormblades would have struggled to hit a DEF 17 Barathrum without Siege knocking it down first. With it being knocked down, it died fairly quickly. Ser Dreyfus jumped into combat with the Deathripper and disrupted it.

Holding their left zone and destroying the objective scored two for Cygnar to nil for Cryx.

Cygnar 2 – Cryx 0

Skarre upkept Black Spot for a wound, then allocated two to Kharybdis. The Void Archon advanced, used its spray to kill the last two Stormguards, then teleported into the middle of the Stormblades, used its free spray from Black Spot (both the teleport and free attack trigger immediately after resolving an attack, so the non-attack trigger resolves first) to kill two Stormblades, then killed the Captain. The amount of souls it generated here was spectacular and really highlights the efficiency of a Void Archon that is not held in check. I decided not to teleport it back as there weren´t too many models that could reliably hit it left on that flank and it could threaten Siege or force him to commit to killing it, which would leave more freedom to the models on the left then.

The Inflictor charged and killed the last Stormguard on the Cryxian left.

Asphyxious and the gang Flicker, then get into the back of the Stormblades, killing all but one of them as well as the objective. This was to a large extent due to the souls they had collected last round. Siege would probably be able to kill Asphyxious, but then the Void Archon would most likely go free.

Axiara put Dodge on the Raiders, then ran to engage Triumph. Skarre put Admonition on herself, advanced behind the wall and shot the Stormblade unit leader.

Having lost one arm, Kharybdis wasn´t at full strength, but still dealt a fair chunk of damage to Triumph, without however taking out any systems. The Deathripper surprisingly dealt six damage to Ser Dreyfus, alas Dr Stygius could not finish him off.

Cryx scored their left zone and the objective.

Cygnar 2 – Cryx 2

ROUND 4

Having missed Axiara with the Rapid Fire shot and Shield attack (and her dodging into its rear arc), Triumph came to the conclusion that killing a Cryx heavy was easier than killing a Cryx solo and blew another gapping hole into Kharybdis, leaving only the Cortex intact.

After taking a second focus off the Squire, Siege charged Asphyxious and knocked him down, but still needing six attacks to get through his armour and two focus points, demonstrating the insane toughness of the construct lich. He then jumped back into the zone. Rhupert and the last Stormblade killed a Satyxis and a Murder Monkey.

The Stormblade Officer tried to lead by example and dealt 9 damage to the Void Archon, which must have utterly amazed his Standard Bearer as he missed the Archon with snake eyes. Dreyfus missed both of his swings at the Deathripper too.

With the Inflictor now inert, neither side scored any points.

Cygnar 2 – Cryx 2

The Void Archon killed the Stormblade Officer and Standard Bearer, then teleported into combat with Triumph and sprayed it down.

Now hitting at MAT 9 and dice+2 damage, Kharybdis didn´t let its two crippled arms get into the way and finished off Triumph.

With the Gang Fighter bonus from Dr. Stygius, the Deathripper ripped Ser Dreyfus to death.

The good doctor and the Murder Bots fail to kill the last Stormblade and Rhupert.

Frustrated, Skarre2 cast a Blood Rain into the melee, killing Rhupert and the Stormblade. In a move that should not be done in a competitive game, she then advanced forward and for the first time in the game, the Rocket Pod actually hit with its Sentry Shot, forcing her to spend her last focus to negate the damage. She then shot the Rocket Pod, damaging it.

The Satyxis ran or charged to engage the Rocket Pod and Siege. The Pod went to two boxes left. Axiara ran into the rear lines of the Cygnaran army to charge any of the three remaining Cygnar models next turn.

Cryx scored their right zone with Kharybdis.

Cygnar 2 – Cryx 3

ROUND 5

In an attempt to clear a charge lane for Siege, the Rocket Pod shot the Satyxis Leader, but missed and scattered onto itself, predictably rolling a 10 to blow up.

Taking the last cookie from the Squire, which also ran closer to provide rerolls, Siege advanced, then jumped to get Line of Sight and range to Skarre, who couldn´t use Admonition as a jump is not an advance. He then cast two Battering Rams at her, needing to boost as he needed 10s to hit. Both hit, but as he cannot boost, Skarre survives on 3 boxes. The odds of the assassination working were about 13%. Siege flattened the Sea Witch out of spite (as it gave a soul token to the Void Archon.

Kharybdis scored the zone again.

Cygnar 2 – Cryx 4

Dr Stygius ran to the central flag, the last Satyxis and Axiara killed the Squire, the Deathripper ran to the left square and Kharybdis stayed in his square. The Void Archon then engaged Siege and beat him up severely, then Skarre finished him off without even needing to use a focus point.

Cygnar 2 – Cryx 8

ASSASSINATION AND SCENARIO WIN FOR CRYX!

AFTERTHOUGHTS

Going into the game, I had a few things I wanted to check:

  • Is a mass single wound infantry list with moderate defensive tech still viable? The answer is probably no unless you can negate soul collection as Void Archons are a very present model in the current meta and can easily run rampant if you let them.
  • What about small-based Storm Knights in particular? I think we need to cross fingers that the announced Dynamic Update will do something for them. Unyielding is great on the cavalry, but the infantry models are not tough enough for it to matter, even in turn 2 when both Stormblade units had their mini-feats up for another +3 ARM.
  • Is Siege2 viable outside of Gravediggers? This is relevant to me as I feel (and others agree with me, such as Daniel Bergström on last week´s The Meta podcast) that Gravediggers is not really competitive at the moment and there is no other real home for Siege2. Again, the answer seems to be no. Again, this is a shame as he looks like a fun caster with a dynamic playstyle.
  • What about Skarre2? I once again have to thank Tim Bossuyt for his feedback on my list. She looks very fun and can keep a Void Archon, the very good Cryx character heavies and Asphyxious alive for a key turn, whilst also being able to fuel the warjacks. That focus efficiency, access to Admonition and an armour buff make her really fun to play, as she can do things every round, fuel her battlegroup and still be safe. In fact, in a ´serious´ competitive game where I would not have committed her for fun turn 4, she would have not been hit be a single attack all game long.
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