Thursday, October 10, 2013

Batrep, 35pts Grayle (Circle) bs. eStryker (Cygnar)

  Believe it or not, I hopefully will have non-Vassal batreps here shortly.  I usually endeavor to get those posted up ASAP, and Vassal reps fall by the wayside, even when sometimes they're the best games.  Hopefully though, I'll be playing something other than Legion tomorrow, and I'm kind of excited about that.

  This game, however, is against Circle.  The guy I played here watched me play the eStryker vs. eMagnus game I have posted earlier.  As soon as it was concluded, he challenged me, eStryker vs. the Circle Assassination expert, which is Grayle, apparently.  We set up and got after it.

  I obviously brought eStryker back because that's what he requested.  I did, however, change up my tarpit unit for the Boomhowlers instead of my normal Nyss shenanigans.  I then traded out the Stormblade Captain for my Journeyman Warcaster with the extra point.  Two reasons.  1.  I actually own a full unit of Boomies, and not a full unit of Nyss (Yet), so I wanted to try the game with stuff I own.  2.  I'm finding that the Journeyman does more for me than the Captain.  I love the captain, but when I only have 1 unit of Stormknights, and 2 methods of getting pathfinder, (Rhupert and Runewood), he's pretty redundant.

*1 Stormgunner
*Jonas Murdoch
Madelyn Corbeau

 My opponent's list.

Swamp Gobbers
Gallows Grove
Lord of the Feast

  I've never fought Grayle, or the LotF.  The only thing I know about this list is that it's a lot of ARM to handle, double stones mean long threat ranges where Tarpits may or may not work, and that the LotF makes my friends cry.

  I rolled off and got first, and the scenario was Outflank.  We deployed, and began.

   I actually remembered my Advanced Move from eStryker on the blades, so I did that.  The Centurion got one focus and eStryker kept the rest.  The Boomhowlers ran forward with Fell Call, and Jonas sent them to ground, the goal here being to make anything to high of a DEF for the LotF to hit, and if he did, a 50% chance of toughing is cool too.  They also got Dirge of Mists from Rhupert, bringing them to DEF17.  The Stormblades ran in behind the Boomies.  The Centurion went wide, Maddie snuck in with the blades, the Journeyman gave them Arcane shield, and Stryker camped his focus.  

  So, Grayle activates.  He puts Storm Rager and Sprint (From the Stalker's animus) on the LotF.  The Gallows port, forward, and then the Non-UA stones teleport the LotF.

  I know this guy is crazy for a 4pt solo, and I know that I want one.  I've never fought one though.  I've read the card a half dozen times, and I've seen batreps on the forums where people playing against him sob, but I've never fought him.

  I hate that guy.

  He ports forward 8'', towards the Boomies.  Everything else moves up.  UA stones port forward, Skinwalkers run.  Woldwarden tramples forward and animus's his little forest, the Stalker runs, Gobbers run, and the LotF shoots the Stormblade to the right of Jonas.  At first, I think the Boomies block LoS, except that they're dug in.

  That dude lands in there, threshers and kills Maddie, Jonas, my Stormblade UA, and three more Stormblades including my Standard Bearer and Stormgunner.  That's like, 9 points.  9 important points.  I just lost Assault on both infantry units, the Boomies no longer benefit from feat, Stryker loses 3'' to his 20'' threat range... Yeah.

  Then, with his soul tokens, he goes after Boomhowler himself.... and... dies to a freestrike from the Stormblade behind him.  Which made me very happy, because now I was very frustrated.  I dislike being that frustrated, and it doesn't reflect well on my sportsmanship.

  Quick Side note.  One thing I've recognized is my difference in play on Vassal and on the tabletop.  I can have the same thing happen at the tabletop, and I'll be frustrated, but not horrible.  In the privacy of my own home, it's a whole different story.  I'm not a happy camper when a 4pt solo wipes out three of the most important things in my list when I tried so hard to protect them.  Is this something you notice in your own vassal games?  It's something I'm noticing with me, and I don't know if my opponent can tell if it's there or not.  My opponent here knew I was frustrated, but we played it through, because it only got worse.  But yeah, if you feel like you're a completely different man sportsmanship wise on Vassal, please post your thoughts, because I think it's an interesting situation and it's something I want to rectify in my own personality.

  Back on subject.  The LotF is dead, which is good, becuase he probably would have killed Boomhowler and some of his dudes.  As it was, I was already in trouble.  And it was my turn now.

  I also forgot to take a picture, in my confusion with what to do next.  There wasn't much to do though, really.  The Cent gets a focus though, and everything moves up.  The Stormblades have Tough now, since pretty much everything he has is Fearless, and he's pretty much out of shooting.  The boomies shoot at one of the stones a bit, but fail to completely kill it.  I move them up as much as I can to block them from getting into my zone at all, and toe Stryker into the trench (That hole.)  Journeyman upkeeps Arcane Shield on the blades.  The Cent moves up with his useless one focus, since I'm not running him, and casts polarity shield, and that's pretty much turn for me.

  I'm trying to do this from my memory now, and it's pretty complicated.  But Grayle teleports up.  He kills a Boomie or two, steps over to a blade, and hits him, but he toughs, then he gets ready to teleport away to safety, except that he realizes he's in the melee range of the Centurion.  He seriously thought about casting Gallows (I think) and pulling the Cent in so he could be charged, but he didn't do it first, and took the chance.  The Centurion hits him, and takes him down to like, six or seven health.  Pretty nearly kills him, but not quite.  He runs off to his zone to dominate it.

  The tree toes into my zone, because it's a dirtbag.  The Gobbers move up and drop smoke.  Which I hate.  Those Gobbers are like, the most annoying 2 points ever in Hordes.  Especially with Cygnar who likes shooting casters?  It's frustrating.  But ok.  Good play.  The Wold gets teleported forward, and he beats on my Centurion a bit, but to no avail.  I think he has all systems intact.  The Wolves walk in though, and try to hurt him a bit more.  If I remember correctly, the Wolf got in there too, hit him for some damage, then sprinted away.  Then the Skinwalkers walked in there and finished his Cortex and nearly got the right arm.  
  I'm in a bad spot, but I see a glimmer of hope.  I camp focus on eStryker.  The boomies move up, and kill the tree, opening a spot for my Caster.  He velocities all the way forward, then walks through the hole the Boomies made and boosts to hit as he shoots at Grayle, at which point, my opponent points out that his caster has stealth.

  This has been a bad game so far.  My opponent, the champ that he is, tells me to take it back though.  Just go back and do something else with eStryker, or if I'd like, call the game, because he knows I'm frustrated.  The dice haven't been good at all, the LotF trashed me, Grayle's stealthed, it's just been horrible.  I have no UAs for my units, only three or four dudes will benefit from feat.  It's just been nasty.  However, he's also playing a really solid game with the exception of getting caught by the Centurion's free strike.  I hate when I'm playing a solid game, and somebody just calls it.  So I stick it out, but pull stryker back.

  I would have used the Boomies differently, but it's too late for that.  The Stormblades charge the Wold, and kill him.  Pretty easily.  The Centurion kills a few Skinwalkers, so that's not too bad.  The feat lets me kill another one, and toe a Blade into his zone to contest it.  

      So, that turn hurt him, but I'm still not in great shape.  Grayle reeves in his fury.  The stones teleport the objective into the zone to dominate it, which I'd completely forgotten about.  However, I'm up to three points I think, and it won't take much to get up to five.  His skinwalkers move in, kill the Stormblade contesting the zone, and then surround the Centurion, who I believe has Arcane Shield at this point, because he's just tanking it.  They do kill off the Stormblades though, with the help of the Warpwolf, who did his stuff, then sprinted away, full on fury.  So, Stormblades are gone, Centurion is surrounded.

  Grayle charges in to finish the Boomies... and fails his charge.  He guestimated on the charge lane, and got caught on a Skinwalker.  I offered to let him take it back, but he wanted to learn from it, so he left Grayle there.  And that was turn.

  For all of my frustration, and irritation with myself, and as well as my opponent had played, and obviously had this game in the bag, it got ended when eStryker velocitied over, and with the +2 to charge attacks from runewood, got in there and killed Grayle in one blow.  The boomies moved out of the way, obviously, and the Cent beat on a few skinwalkers, but it was game over when the turn began and my opponent knew it.


  Thoughts on this game.

  1.  I felt horrible winning this one.  For keeping a cool head in a game, I got overly frustrated with this one.  Watching one solo just waltz through my army is horrifying.  And it's just a game.  This game is not my best representation of sportsmanship, but I wanted to batrep it anyways because:
   A)  My opponent, Seraphim_Guard, was a champ.  He's going to be playing in an online Vassal tournament against me shortly, and I'm looking forward to it.  If you see this guy on Vassal, he's a fantastic opponent, is great to play against, and I can't recommend him enough.  He was completely cool with me calling the game, and understood my frustration.  When I failed as a sportsman, he excelled graciously, and I wanted to showcase that with this batrep.
  B)  I wanted to pull out something I think I see in Vassal.  I've noticed a tendency with myself especially, to have a much worse attitude about the game than I think I would in person, and I wanted to bring that up as a topic.
  C)  Seraphim_Guard really did play a fantastic game, and had it very much in the bag except for that one mistake, and I felt like it was a good game to show.  He built a very, very strong list using animuses and solos and whatever else.  It's a tough list, and I want to open up the bragging rights for him on that one.

2.  Back to thoughts on the game.  I like the Boomhowlers.  They're not DEF19 like the Nyss are with Jonas, but they don't need Rhupert feeding them tough all the time.  And while the Nyss are Weaponmasters, the Boomhowlers are POW...12?  Or 13?  It makes up for it.  The RAT also isn't what the Nyss's is, but the power from the gun is great.  I think on the assault, these guy might be better against Jacks and such.  Against infantry, the Nyss will win.

3.  Jr. vs. the Stormblade Captain.  Doh.  Should have done that a long time ago.

  Overall, very good game, and I owe Seraphim_Guard one for putting up with my sorry carcass.  Shoutout to a great guy on Vassal.

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