Saturday, October 12, 2013

50pts, High Reclaimer (Menoth) vs. pCaine (Cygnar)

I apologize to the few of you that are email notified.  For some reason, this particular post proved to be pretty troublesome to get posted.

 I managed to get down to the Shoppe yesterday and snuck in a demo game against a poor soul who wanted to play his new circle caster with my circle warbeasts. I felt pretty bad, taking pStryker, Stormclad, and an Avenger up against pKaya, Megalith, and a Woldwarden.... Did you know that PS17 does absolutely nothing to an ARM26 Stormclad on feat turn?

Anyways, the second game I got in was actually a 50pt game against Menoth. I really like playing my normal opponent, but after so many games of Legion, I kinda wanted a faction not typically chosen by the lowlifes of this world who hate people in general. So I landed Menoth instead. I feel like very little changed. 

He ran his High Reclaimer list, and I brought pCaine. I hadn't played pCaine till the tournament last week, and had only brought him then as my backup caster to Kraye. Out of four games, pCaine played three of them and won two. I love Deadeye. Deadeye is awesome. Deadeye, Snipe, Blur, all in the same package? It's fantastic. I also thought it was a good chance to try out my new Stormlances. And, while we're trying out one cav unit, we ought to bring out the other cav unit too. On top of that, I hate vassal. I understand that I'm running a Vassal tournament, and that it's a great way to play you clowns, but I hate vassal. Boomhowlers do not do well on Vassal. My tough checks fail 8 times out of 10, they can't hit anything, it's ridiculous. Every time I play vassal and Boomhowlers, I'm mad at them and wish I'd brought Nyss instead. Generally, what works in Vassal and works on tabletop are not the same thing. You need to spend more points on stuff that's going to hit on fours and fives, rather than averages of sevens. So usually, the Nyss are a better choice for me in Vassal, even without the higher POW the Boomhowlers have, because at least they hit.

The tabletop, however, actually doesn't have an avid hate against the human race, and I wanted to try the Boomhowlers off of the computer screen. I own them, they're partly painted, they look cool, yeah, I want to try them.

I'm also not looking forward to the Menoth game. The guy normally runs an infantry machine list unless he brings the Judicator. I have yet to go up against dual units of heavy Menoth infantry. pCaine, I figure, is my best matchup. eStryker wouldn't be bad, but I reeeeeaaallly want to try pCaine.

So, lists.

High Reclaimer
*Avatar of Menoth
*Blessing of Vengeance (I think. Had shieldguard)
Exemplar Bastions
Exemplar Bastions
Holy Zealots
Monolith Bearer
Exemplar Bastion Seneschal
Saxon Orrick
Orin Midwinter
Gorman di Wulfe (Proxied by Harby)

My answer:

Boomhowlers (Max)
Tempest Blazers (Max)
Stormlances (Min)
Nyss (min)
*Jonas (Proxied by pStryker)

We rolled off, I got it, deployed first, and Justin stuck his hand in the way of the picture.

Guess what? Everything ran. Except Caine and the Stormwall, because I forgot to give him focus, but it's ok. The Nyss made it nearly halfway up the board and Jonas sent them to ground. The Blazers forged forward and the Lances swung in behind them. Boomhowlers ran up the left flank and Stormwall moved forward every bit of his 5''. Caine moved up and gave Snipe to the Stormwall and Blur to the Nyss. My opponent pointed out that the Blazers were farther than 6'' away from Caine. Ha! Caine has +5 range on his spells. My opponent had an excellent point, I just am bragging that I actually remembered a stat on my card. Heck, I'm bragging that I even read the back of the card.

Everything of his ran too. The Avatar generated 3 focus and went down the left flank, headed for the Boomies. The High Reclaimer moved up and threw five clouds, and the Zealots lined up behind them. The Bastions swept in behind them and Orin Midwinter stealthed himself. Saxon climbed into the woods and the game came back to me.
Look!  Action Shot!

I opened the ball by upkeeping both Snipe, and Blur, and pulling a focus from the squire, which Caine kept. Boomies ran forward, pushing into the woods a bit more. Stormwall moved up a bit, sniped and shot the Avatar twice, hitting both times, boosting damage and doing ok. Nothing crazy, but ok. Mainly got lucky though, because Jose forgot to give him the enchantment from the Choir to prevent any non-magical shooting. It didn't happen anymore after that.

Caine threw Deadeye to the Blazers, and Deadeye to the Nyss. The Nyss moved up into the clouds and killed three or four Zealots. The Blazers moved into the woods, and only one had LOS, so he shots a Bastion with Electro leap (I debated against brutal), and did only a little damage to him, but more importantly, zapped Saxon. Unfortunately, I only took three boxes off of the sniper's life, so meh. But I was pleased with the tactic. The Blazers lightcavved back, and the Lances moved in behind them once more. I was really excited to try the lances. That's another unit that disappoints me in Vassal pretty consistently. But I haven't tried them with Caine yet either, so yeah.

Jose camps his focus once more on the High Reclaimer, and the Avatar generates 4. The Choir casts Battle on the Avatar, who then proceeds to charge into the Boomhowlers, kills one and lights two more on fire. The High Reclaimer steps forward, and casts Ashes to Ashes, needing not double ones to hit his Zealot in the back. Guess who gets double ones? He then drops 3 clouds with the Focus he has remaining. The Zealots creep in, mindful of the templates that Stormwall put down and I forgot to tell anyone about. They manage to do most of what the Reclaimer failed to, and kill off all of my Nyss. They also minifeat, where I can't hurt them this turn except with feats and spells. Jonas, however, survives, and passes his CMD with a 9. Just baaaarreeely scraping by. He's terrified, but it's under control. I guess.

The Bastions on my right flank are staring down my blazers, but can't actually see any of them. So, Saxon gives them Pathfinder, and they run through the woods to engage one blazer. The other Cinerators move up the left flank as much as they can, and one hits a Boomhowler, who toughs.

I, on the other hand, realized I was an idiot, leaving Boomie himself that far forward and exposed. But ok. The other stuff moves up, and Orin does his 12'' no magic thing.

Caine pulls another focus from the squire. He upkeeps Snipe, but not Blur, since it's probably pointless at this point anyways. Two go to the Stormwall. The Stormwall moves forward, shoots at the Bastions on the left once with the big gun, but doesn't get much from it. Hurts one maybe, and then shoots one on the right with the other big gun. That one does much better. 7 damage I think, and Jose scatters the pain around to his unit. I then roll a 1 for his left d3 gun, which doesn't do any good either, and drop a template on the temple terrain in the middle with the right. Caine casts Deadeye on the Blazers, and Lances both, and gets behind the wall.

The Boomies stand up with a call, losing their 4, 5, 6, tough, and going to just 5 and 6. I then charge. In retrospect, this was really stupid. I only got one charge bonus in against the avatar, and everyone else just basically ran. I should have just stood up, gotten some shots off, a few guys would have gotten more melee attacks. As it is, I just tarpitted really well, and put a few more points on the Avatar.

The right flank, however, opened the ball. One blazer moved forward to engage one of the two bastions engaging the leading pony. The other three got LOS on Bastions as much as possible. With Deadey, absolutely none of them missed, and I annihilated one engaging me, electro leaped Saxon to death, and killed another one. With the damage getting kicked around, three of them were still doing ok, including one engaging the horses. The Blazers backed up as much as they could with the light cav, and the stars of the show, our Medium-based infantry with horses under them, assaulted.

With Deadeye, nothing missed. The damage got spread around some more, but it wasn't enough. Between the Impact attacks, 2 electro leaps, POW12 Assault show and PS13 charge attack, the last three bastions died, and took Saxon with them. The whole unit dieing is important, because the Reclaimer's feat is very similar to eMorvahna's in that he can bring back the dead soldiers of a unit that still has a Khador Arc node on the table.

Jonas, not having much else to do, ran like a maniac and engaged Rhupert and Orin, surviving a free strike from a Zealot.

And another ACTION SHOT.  Because I can.

So, Menoth turn begins. The Avatar generates four focus again, I think? The Reclaimer keeps his focus once more, moves towards the right and casts Ashes to Ashes at my leading Lance, needing an 8 to hit. He boosts, and misses... Which sucks, really bad. Then he hit Jonas, who toughed. So he hit him again, and I think... he died finally. Jose moved on to the Avatar, who killed a few more Boomhowlers, except they kept toughing. The Bastions got in and did some damage as well. Between the Zealots (Which there may have been two units of...), the Left Bastions, and the Avatar, they killed 16 Boomhowlers over two turns, and I made 9 tough checks.

Yeah! Suck it Vassal!

That left me with five, KD (Except Boomie, who's in the back for a change, but on fire) Boomhowlers still tarpitting the left side. Specifics though. The Avatar hit one that was pretty central, and gave it the flame thing he does, which is how he ignited Boomie. Then he spent two focus trying to kill one Boomhowler who kept toughing like a champ. The Zealots grenaded some more, one punched a boomie. The other unit on the right flank threw some grenades at the Lances, but to no avail.

Hey! A solo I forgot. The acrobati daughter or the flame or something? Yeah, she went charging across the field from way in the back left and attacked that front Lance? He didn't care. On four dice, she only got him down 2 boxes I think. So yeah, she's right there in the front engaging a lance too.

The left side Bastions killed (tried) a boomie or three more. The right flank Zealots threw more grenades, but pretty much everything deviated, except one, and that one actually killed a Blazer. I think he rolled an eleven to hit, and that actually got him.

My turn. I'm feeling pretty decent with this game. I'm generally just really excited that the Boomies and Lances are doing so well. The Lances lucked out, because after the last two vassal games, I wasn't buying any more of them. After this, I think I'll get Laddermore on order now too. Anyways. I debated about Scenario, or Assassination. I was an activation into my turn when Jose realized he'd completely derped his turn, forgetting Orin's activation, Gorman's, the Shield Guard jack in the back, and the Seneschal. He'd also forgotten to put clouds down.

With left me with a pretty decent chance to assassinate. Not an amazing chance, but not bad. To win by Scenario, I'd have to clean out what was left of the Zealots on the right, all the supports, and tarpit the High Reclaimer, who'd have 16 focus next turn from all the souls he got this turn.

My Boomies would have to keep tarpitting the left flank with increasingly worse odds while Stormwall moved up to help, and at some point, Caine might could use his feat to clear stuff out. In fact, I'd have to on the next turn because the Zealots would be coming back with the Reclaimer's feat.

So, Assassination it is. Stormwall got two focus. I upkept Snipe, moved Caine over, and deadeyed both the Lances, and Blazers. The lances assaulted and the Zealots, and the right most lance chance a free strike from a zealot to attack Orin. The Zealot actually hit him, and then rolled trip boxcars.


So... basically, my horse stepped in a hole, the guy fell over and off the horse, landed next to the Zealot, completely unconscious, and none of my blazers liked him, so they just watched while this Zealot slit his throat.


Anyways, between the electro leaps, boosted ranged attack rolls and MAT9 charge attacks, I fried what was left of the Zealots, and opened LOS to the Reclaimer. The Blazers activated next, also deadeyed. Conveniently, Gorman was not only the main model blocking LOS to the Stormwall, he was the closest model to the High Reclaimer. The first shot was an electro leap, that didn't do much to the Reclaimer, but fried Gorman. The next three shots were brutals that all hit (haha) and took him down to just below half heath.

Stormwall shuffled over, fired two boosted-to-hit shots, and a dice minus three, put paid to the Menoth Caster.


1. MVP is a tough choice. The Lances and Boomhowlers both did fantastic. The Lances pretty nearly handled the Bastions on their own (Not quite), but pretty darn close. The Boomhowlers, however, tied up... 20, 25pts? All by themselves, which left 30 something points to focus on the right side of the battlefield. So I think MVP goes to the Boomies, but lances take a close second.
2. Speaking of Lances. Those guys are not quite as support-free as the Blazers are. They're nice, but not quite as self sufficient. However, tag them to pCaine, or anyone with Deadeye, and they become monsters. Masters of the Ride-By attack. I need the other 2, and Laddermore.
3. Boomhowlers. Are they better than Nyss? Idk. I think Nyss are better against Hordes, where I need the Higher MAT to deal with Beasts higher DEF, and the POW9 weapon master works fairly decent against lower ARM beasts anyways. With Rhupert, they gain tough, so there's that too. They're absolute winners in my eStryker list. For Warmachine matchups though... The 3pt cheaper (Factoring Rhupert in with the Nyss) Boomies are kicking butt. 50% chance of Tough? PS13? Assault if I give them Jonas? Deadeye under Caine, if I so choose? How would you like to deal with Assaulting POW12, PS13 medium based infantry?
4. pCaine. He's awesome. I don't know how I haven't played him before. 
5. I also got lucky. Clouds on the High Reclaimer would have made life infinitely more difficult, and Jose had a solid next turn coming with the Feat, and my left flank losing steam. If the Avatar had managed to finish the Boomies, I'd of had Bastions into my Stormwall, and that's not a good thing. 

Overall though, fun game. Nice change from Legion.

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