onsdag 23. desember 2015

Battle Report #45 - Haley2 vs Lylyth2 (50)

:: Prologue ::

Having completed a fairly quick game we had time for another! This time it was Haley's turn to try her luck against Lylyth2. The idea of dropping Haley into Legion hinges on her ability to handle a number of Legion nasties. I am comfortable with most of them, especially if I can get the Hurricane over a second Stormwall (not likely to happen for a few months at the very least, unfortunately), but Lylyth is without a doubt one of the hardest. With ADR, she can truly tailor her list to bring ridiculous amounts of shooting. How can the doublewall hold up against this?

:: Lists ::

Major Victoria Haley - WJ: +5
- Squire
- Stormwall - PC: 19
- Lightning Pod
- Stormwall - PC: 19
- Lightning Pod
Journeyman Warcaster - PC: 3
Arcane Tempest Gun Mage Pistoleers - Leader & 5 Grunts: 6
- Arcane Tempest Gun Mage Officer - Officer 2
Tactical Arcanist Corps - Leader & 2 Grunts: 4
Lylyth, Shadow of Everblight - WB: +5
- Succubus
- Naga Nightlurker - PC: 5
- Nephilim Bolt Thrower - PC: 6
- Nephilim Bolt Thrower - PC: 6
- Ravagore - PC: 10
- Ravagore - PC: 10
- Ravagore - PC: 10
- Shredder - PC: 2
The Forsaken - PC: 2
Blighted Nyss Shepherd - PC: 1
Blighted Nyss Shepherd - PC: 1

:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::

We were playing Outflank again to save time and I won the roll-off. I elected to go first. In hindsight, I believe this is a mistake. More on the matter later, under evaluation. So anyway, I deployed Stormwalls centrally on either side of a house with the bonded one on my presumed strong flank. Likely a mistake, again see evaluation. Legion skewed behind the other circle and off we went!

:: Game ::

I put Temporal on the left one to make them both run far. ATGM flanked towards his side. Haley behind the house.

Both Stormwalls lost ~5 boxes with Wraithbaned Ravagores. Lylyth forgot Shadow Pack however (!).

Given my deployment, I wasn't going for scenario here. I was going for attrition. The problem with going for attrition is that I need an offensive feat. Now, to engage him and actually hurt him, I needed Temporal on the right Stormwall. This meant Haley had to activate before it and thus I would not be in a position to hit many beasts with my feat. This made it all very clumsy because sending it in without feat support isn't exactly something I'm too keen on doing. Adding insult to injury I didn't manage to kill it despite putting 4 focus on it (though I did forget my temporal bonus attack). This meant my second Stormwall had to take it down and so it aimed and killed it with a big gun. This was a problem because I needed that Stormwall further up the field.

Legion commits to the right Stormwall. I hadn't thought of the fact that the closest Ravagore could engage it. 6 attacks with Wraithbane on Pow16 hurts (it hurts more than an Angelius, on average...). So it was that Lylyth could save her feat and still kill it off, Pin Cushion doing what needed to be done.

From a list of things of what you don't want to have happen with Haley2 and double Stormwall vs Lylyth, losing one without Lylyth having spent her feat is right up there at the very top. While I didn't have focus left over to cast Deceleration last turn because I def the Walls with 6 focus + Temporal, it wouldn't have mattered that much as a lot of the shooting had Wraithbane. It arguably could've saved it. Anyway, Legion had made a terrible mistake: Both zones were completely open! I was hoping to capitalize on this. The remaining Stormwall ran up to engage the Ravagore, Haley camped 8 focus and received Arcane Shield, ran into the zone and feated while the ATGM took the other zone. 3-0.

My opponent deliberated going for the Stormwall or trying an assassination on Haley. The decision was made to target the Stormwall. I survived solely because Lylyth missed 2 times (!) with Pin Cushion. I had 6 boxes left or something. The ravagore moved to contest with the forsaken in the right zone.

So, 3-2 to me. I needed to dominate one zone to win. I started looking at my own zone, a combination of TK + slam might've taken the Ravagore away but it looked iffy. The answer came to me as I took a look on the other zone, where a single Shredder was contesting. I put 3 focus on the Stormwall which boosted a Headbutt on it, following up with a pod (both sides were crippled) to kill it. Haley ran into the zone and with that, the game was over (Had it survived the plan was to cast Temporal on Haley and charge it with boosted to hit).

Victory to the Swans!

:: Evaluation ::

What a mess of a game. This might look like your typical "oh-you-faced-Legion-and-got-screwed" situation, but I think it boils down to 2 big mistakes on my part.

The first is a strategical one. My deployment is more focused on scenario than attrition. This doesn't work in this matchup when I go first because of, well, the dynamics of first and second player. Arguably I could've tried running both Stormwalls right T1 (in fact I didn't even consider this), camping centrally with ATGM and feating T2 and physically block him out of my zone due to his rather huge sweep. I think, given my deployment, this would've been a better course of action.

So what was the mistake? It's actually technically very small yet easy to overlook. Initially I wrote that I assumed the right circle to be my "strong" one. By that, I mean that I expected Lylyth to skew left, which indeed she did. The strong zone is thus the area where I expect Haley to end up sooner or later. So, intuitively I felt that my right Stormwall needed to wrap around and thus have the longer threat range. Makes sense, right? Except it doesn't. The nature of the Legion beasts is such that if they shoot me, outside of feat, I can charge them: Given that it's the bonded Stormwall. The other one can engage them by running up. The right play then, assuming the right flank is my strong one, is to play the bonded one to the left. Why is this so important? Well, this takes us to my second mistake: Not feating T2.

When I planned my T2 after Legion T1, I wanted to engage all beasts and feat. Something like that, at least. What happened however was that Haley had to move first because the right Stormwall, the bonded one, needed Temporal Acceleration. As there was no room for Haley to slip through and catch stuff in her feat she was stuck. Had I instead deployed the bonded 'wall on the left, I could've moved the right one first, shot stuff up or whatever and then have Haley cast Temporal, move up behind it and feat before the bonded 'wall charged in and did its thing. This would furthermore have been better because the non-bonded 'wall wouldn't have had to wrap around the house to protect Haley.

Given the situation after deployment, I believe my best play just might be to sweep hard right. Given the rather intense skew of Lylyth, I'm not sure he can get into a position to contest T2 if I feat.

Lylyth suffers horrible from having only 5 fury. Her army *has* to stay tight together and she suffers from it. This can be exploited and indeed I came close-ish to winning a similar game against Legion not too long ago because I managed to use this to my advantage in Outflank (the only reason I lost was because of a truly retarded decision).

While a mess of a game, I learned tons and am eager to try again! I would also like to emphasize how useful a Hurricane would've been here, the lock-down ability with its arc node + tk under feat turn would be amazing!

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