Thursday, February 1, 2018

Guildball Batrep #4 – Masons (Hammer) vs. Fishermen (Shark)

  Batrep #4 is here.  We're still staggering through the holidays a bit and surviving the weather but Adam and I got a game in today. 

  With a tournament coming up, we wanted to touch on a few matchups we don't see often in our meta.  There are no fish players, though I think our PG and I both own them, but I'm the only guy that's put them on the table.  That said, I've only put them on the table a handful of times.  They're fun, but I like the ability to switch gears and fight and Shark can do that, but it's bad times if it's come to that.

  With Adam having never seen Shark, just Corsair, we played this game off of the clock.

  JD's Lineup

  He knows I'm taking Shark, because that's the Captain we'd discussed.  My lineup has Corsair though as well, both mascots, Jac, Sakana, Siren1, Siren2, Greyscales and Hag.  I don't care for Kracken too much and while I think Angel is better than many say (she's better than most of the strikers in the Guilds I play, for starters), I like 2'' melee. 

 Adam's Lineup: My lineup in this match, will be Honour, Hammer, Marbles, Mallet, Flint, Harmony, Lucky, Mist, Tower, and the reliable Brick. I figure, I want some two inch melee, and dodges, since I know people will want to play the ball here.

  Rolloff and Plotcards

  JD: I win the rolloff, and my plotcards are Knee Slider, Good Marker and Brace for Impact, which I feel are all excellent cards in this matchup.  My GIC is Groundwork.  I thought about Pay to Win, but preferred Groundwork in this matchup.

  Adam: My GIC in this one is, For the Greater Good, Which allows me to fix my mistakes, in a very mason like style by re allocating an influence to a friendly guild model once per turn.  My plots are Who are Ya?, Wingback, and Field Dressing.

  The Draft

  We both drop our Captains and Mascots.  I'm taking Shark and Tentacles, Adam is taking Hammer and Marbles.  I draft Siren, Hag, Greyscales and Sakana.  Adam drafts Mallet, Flint, Mist and Brick.

    JD: I'm not a big Salt guy, I like Tentacles a lot.  Close Control, 2'' melee and more importantly in this matchup, Blind.  Hammer going to TAC5 is kind of rough, imo.  I also like Greyscales in this matchup because 2'' UM is pretty tough to catch.  The Hag, I have found is amazing for breaking scrums and moving models across the board.  Siren1 is less good these days, but I still expect to be able to trigger her Seduce off of her playbook at some point.  Sakana has Weakpoint and Anatomical Precision.  I missed Jac, and would probably bring him on in the future instead of Sakana or Greyscales, but I'm not sure yet.

  Adam:  I choose Hammer here in this matchup, since I feel like I should reliably be able to wail on some models here, since a lot of them aren’t that tough, and no one really wants to fight me, Marbles I’ve come to use a lot because of Goad, I end up using this more and more now, and It’s a super handy weapon to control a model. The rest of my lineup centered around being able to play the ball, and trying to prevent people from coming into the goal area. Brick, and Marbles not only protect hammer, but they also help people from just running up to the goal and doing whatever they want. Flint and Mist are easily two, solid ball players, with abilities to get around UM, and Mist has 2” melee. Then Mallet can add extra tac to hammer and get around most models melee ranges on this team. Having quite a few model with extra reach, and being able to play the ball and still kill seemed like a solid choice going into this matchup.

  Inf is allocated.  Shark's loaded, Greyscales has 2, Tentacles 2, Hag 1, and Sakana 2.  Hammer gets loaded, Mist has three, Brick 1, Marbles 1, Mallet 1 and Flint 2.  Hammer jogs forward, kicks the ball into the cover on my side of the table.  It's a ways out there.

  Sakana sprints to it and kicks it back in the general direction of Shark, and it scatters back behind him.  Brick jogs up and leaves the INF he didn't use to Mist, using the "Greater Good" GIC, but as I look at that card now, that's a Guild only ability, not friendly.  It didn't matter here though.

  With the ball safely in my court, I take my time.  Tentacles sprints forward and successfully Blinds Hammer.  Mallet moves forward, leaving an INF on him.  Siren sprints up to put 2'' melee around Tentacles but I don't really push her far enough up there even though I had the room too, and Hammer is still able to get into Tentacles without being engaged by Siren too.  At this point, I should have played my Plot Card "Brace for Impact", and this would have likely saved Tentacles but I forgot about it and Hammer gets a double push, plus beatback, and shoves him back three inches toward Mallet where he finishes off the Octopus.  0-1 Masons.

  Hag activates.  She dodges Shark up 2'' with her Fisher's reel, retrieves the ball and punts it successfully to Greyscales.  Marbles shuffles over to within 4'' of Brick.  Greyscales moves up, kicks to Shark and then uses "Where'd they Go" to dodge into melee with Hammer and not get charged by Brick. 

   Mist puts cover on Brick and runs up to cover on the right, just positioning and burning INF.  Shark activates, and he charges Brick..  I push-dodge Brick out of cover, farm him for a minute and dodge into melee with Hammer.  All in all, I put 5 momentum on the board, and stay out of range of Flint being able to charge me for momentum or tackle.  At 7 momentum, I'm up on the roll and win it handily.  I allocate 6 to Shark, 3 to Sakana, 2 to Greyscales, 2 to Siren and none to Hag.  Tentacles comes back on by the goal.  Hammer gets loaded, Mallet gets 2 I think, Mist 3, Flint 2, Marbles 1.

    Shark activates, of course.  He hits Hammer 5 times, an early one being for Stagger (-1 DEF) and the rest all dodges that move Shark up the board.  Three of those dodges are momentous single dodges and the last is a non momentous double dodge to get me out of melee with Flint.  He also legendaries, catching everyone but Mist.  He walks up around Marbles and out of 6'' of Brick and kicks an easy goal, even getting a Screamer.  4-1 Fish.

  The ball scatters back and hits cover near Mist. 

  Mist dodges to it, picks it up, sprints to goal and scores easily. 4-5 Masons.

  I boot the ball back out to Sakana, who charges Brick.  I get the non-momentous double push dodge and shove him back, dodge up and score again.  I use kneeslider to simply move him within 4'' of the goal, keep momentum and be ready for snapshots.  I still have Greyscales on the board and I expect him to retrieve the ball soon.  8-5 Fish.

  Adam scatters the ball out to the right, away from Greyscales.  He goes ahead and activates Hammer, who can't get to anyone but Siren.  He can reach Greyscales, but with UM he can't catch him.  So he goes into Siren, which doesn't worry me.  He doesn't charge, so she counter attacks.  He can only just barely reach her, and is engaged by Greyscales.

  He gets damage and a push, and pushes her two inches away, and gets out of Greyscale's melee.  I should have used UM when he engaged her and moved Greyscales back closer to him, but I didn't.  She counter attacks, needing 3 hits on 2s to double dodge out of his melee.  I bonus time the roll and get snakeyes, so only a single dodge.  This is not enough to save her and Siren goes down, her 2 INF with her.  I missed an 86% chance to double dodge out of melee, but if I had dodged Greyscales back, that would have gone up to 96%.  86% should have been plenty, but dice happen.  Hammer also uses his legendary.

  However, he did it at the right time.  If he'd waited an activation, Hag would have moved up and legendaried, getting him way away from everyone.  That's what she does now, moving Greyscales 4'' to the right, Hammer back and Flint back. 

  Flint has to go get the ball now, with Greyscales in range of is now.  He pulls 2/2 MOV from Mallet I think and sprints, WTG to the ball.  Greyscales dodges into Brick and hits him for Momentum, but that's it. 

  Hammer moves into Shark, KDs and Singles him out for Momentum.  He stays out of his melee.  Adam is up on Momentum considerably, so Tentacles heals 4, heals Hag and moves up in front of the goal.

  Adam wins the rolloff, easily.  He loads Hammer, gives 3 to Flint, 3 to Mallet, 2 to Mist.  I've got 15 INF this turn, so I load Shark and Sakana both.  Hag gets 1, Siren gets 1 and Greyscales gets 3.  The score is 8-7 Fish, so Flint can't simply score to win.  He needs a 6VP activation, so I feel like I have time, especially since Hammer is out of 6'' from everyone he can pull INF from, and Hag is the only model he can reach, and I don't think he can kill her because of Fear.  However, in what was really a solid decision, Flint dodges down the field, sprints to within range of Hammer and passes successfully, despite being engaged by Hag.  Hammer dodges forward 4".

  Now we have a problem.  I can't reach the ball with anybody, I don't think.  Looking back, I maaaaaybe could have gotten there with Shark but it's really sketchy, and I don't know that I can get it to anyone that can hide it from Mallet. Probably Greyscales. Hammer needs 5VPs, and both Hag and Tentacles are within range.  I decide to move Tentacles.  I really don't think that Hammer can kill the Hag because of Fear, but I know he can kill Tentacles.  So I move Tentacles back by Mist.

  Hammer charges Hag.  He gets the KD on her, and I use my GIC to protect her.  He shoves her back a bit, pulls a 1/0 KICK buff from Flint and boots the ball to Mist, who dodges down the line.  He buys 2 more attacks into Hag and does decent damage but only gets her to half, and pushes her towards Mallet.  Crisis averted, but now I have to get the ball.

  The Hag gets up, shadow likes out of melee.  She dodges Greyscales back 2'', then walks around behind Hammer, outside of 1'' and away from Mallet.  She hits him for 1 momentous dodge and dodges into him, still safe from Mallet.

  Mist activates, throws cover on both of them and sprints down the field, hiding.

  Siren sprints and engages Brick. 

  Mallet beats up on Shark a bit and walks down the field.

  The game is getting long now.  Sakana beats up on Mallet some, getting Weakpoint and some damage and I'm alternating between Momentum and damage because I'm planning on killing Mallet, trying to get up on points, but the more I look at the scene, but more I don't know where my last 2 VP are going to come from unless it's Flint who I can't button down for multiple activations. 

  Brick takes a damage from Siren and walks towards the scrum.  Shark clears conditions, walks away from the monkey and into melee with Brick and Mallet, keeping Marbles in melee too.  He hits Mallet once for a momentous single dodge and dodges out of Brick's melee, then buys damage into Mallet, still planning on killing him.  I still really can't figure out how to close out the game though, and the more I look, the more I realize I can't, so I switch to momentum farming.

  Marbles meanders up.

  Greyscales WTG into Mallet, buys an attack that wraps for 2 dodges, hits Hammer for another single dodge and walks down the field.  I'm up by 4 momentum, and win the rolloff.

  I load up Shark, Greyscales and dole everything else out, giving 2 to Sakana, 1 to Hag and I think 1 to Tentacles.  Hammer, of course, gets fully loaded, Flint gets 3, Mallet 4, Mist 1.

  Greyscales walks into Mist and buys an attack, and Mist Counter Attacks.  The first attack does really well, getting 3 hits on a 5/0, but I take the momentous dodge and shift over and within 1'' of Mist so the odds of him dodging away are slim.  He only gets one hit after ARM, and does 1 damage.  Greyscales bonus times an attack, tackles the ball and dodges away with "Where'd they Go".  He kicks successfully and it scatters into the fast ground on the left.

  Hammer goes, and somehow, by pulling 2/2 MOV from Flint, he walks up to Shark, around Sakana's melee range and engages him.  He pulls 1 Damage from Mallet and proceeds to shove Shark all over the place until he engages both Marbles and Brick and kills Shark, taking the score to 9-8 Masons.

  At this point, it is 5 o'clock in the afternoon and we started this game at 1:30.  It's going to take Greyscales and Sakana another turn to get to the ball, and I have no way to generate momentum enough to go first, so Hammer is going to activate beginning of next turn and kill at least Hag, if not Hag and Sakana.  I would need two activations next round and Hammer just isn't going to let it happen, and my shift at work starts in 2 hours.  So I called it in Masons favor and determined to always play clock forever.

  Thoughts on the Game:

  JD:  I felt like I ran Shark ok.  I missed Jac but I like Greyscales and Sakana both and I feel that Greyscales is nearly impossible for Hammer to catch.  Most of my models have easy access to solid dodges against Hammer so I felt really great about my lineup overall.

  I made a minor mistake with Siren.  I should have moved her up a bit more to protect Tentacles.  The major mistake was not using my plotcard.  That would have made the difference in saving the Octopus I think, and Blind really didn't help me since Tentacles only has 8 boxes anyways.  "Brace for Impact" would have saved him I think.  It would have at least helped.

  Shark's legendary turn went fantastic.  I wish I could have caught Mist in the net, and I should have focused a bit more on that because it would have prevented the immediate counter score.  The issue is that I didn't want to give Adam a chance to counterattack me, and I would have had to leave Hammer's victim stats to catch Mist.  That was probably a mistake though, and I should have done it.  Otherwise, catching everyone else really neutered the team, EXCEPT.

  Siren.  Siren should have been fine.  Siren's the lynchpin that really pull the floor out from underneath.  Hammer was still able to go, use his INF, score 2VP and secure a second turn which invalidated a lot of Shark's legendary turn.  I should have dodge Greyscales up to further hurt Hammer's chances of killing Siren, and the extra dice should have been enough to guarantee that double dodge.  I really didn't want him pushing into Greyscales though, but I should have tried to make a position that worked.  Her double dodge, at 86%, should have gone off though.  Against  2/1 with bonus time... That was frustrating.  I lost her 2 INF, gave up 2 VP, and first activation next turn which would have prevented Flint from running away early on.  After this activation, I did what I could, but I couldn't catch the ball.

  There was a chance to save the game at the end, but I used the momentum to bonus time the tackle on Mist, which didn't leave me any momentum to counter attack Hammer with.  If Shark could have counterattacked Hammer, or forced the KD, he likely would have survived.  I honestly didn't think he was anywhere close to being able to walk into Shark though, and certainly not around Sakana. 

  Adam: First let me say Shark’s legendary is awful to be a victim of. It's so hard to do anything with any model for a turn that’s caught in that play, plus, you’ve wasted influence. I felt like this game was going super poorly for me whenever I got hit by that. Luckily Mist was far enough out of range that I was able to still have a model, to score with, and Hammer could Legendary and kinda mitigate that movement nerf.

    As the game went on I started to understand more and more that there was no way I was going to win by trying to just score the ball, which for the most part, I knew coming into this matchup, but man do Fish score goals fast, and they’re so good at getting to the ball too. So by the time the second goal was on the table by them, I knew I had to try and hid the ball from them and utilize hammer to start beating people down.

   Now Siren being the only person I could reach was a gamble on my part, but the only way I could reliably try and get momentum for the next turn, and I honestly forgot that I was a 2/1 due to stagger at the time, so I wasn’t thinking much of 3 dice against him. However, I did get lucky on the roll. Looking back the better thing for me to do would have been to position myself over to greyscales with Hammer, and use knockback on Siren’s first hit to dodge into him.  This way I would have had a chance to farm off Greyscales too, because had that play not gone in my Favor this game changes a lot.

   I played much better towards the end of that game than I did in the first two turns, Utilizing mist and flint to keep the ball until I could get some take outs to score and put the game away, was the best thing I could do, Had I not done that the game would have been over much sooner. The last turn my decision to go into shark was based entirely on the knowledge that JD had no momentum for the counter attack, if he had the momentum I probably would have picked someone different, but the fact that shark had a lot of influence and already damaged a little bit, led me to try and kill him. I knew the ball would be much safer then, and I’d probably be able to position myself to go first, the following turn.

   All in all the Fish are really cool to play into, and seem like a fun guild to play, after playing them I spent time looking at them and Corsair definitely seems like a cool model to play with too. I definitely think he could be a could be a fun model against, The Almighty Reaper, Thresher, too.

  JD:  Yeah, I definitely feel like the Corsair/Thresher matchup is probably in our future, and would be worth trying.  He brings some solutions to the problem for sure.  With a Thresher nerf probably incoming, who knows how key it is to develop that tech but who knows.  It could go either way.

  Thanks for reading through, and hopefully you got a taste of Shark and idea of what's coming.  Look forward to the next one and we'll see you around.  Thanks for reading!