Before we started this game we'd agreed that Doomie3 needs to capitalize on his turn 1 Tier bonuses: Take the turn if you win the roll-off. claim the field and (probably) feat T2 instead whilst pushing up. I was eager to face a more aggressive approach. When in doubt, push!
:: Lists ::
Major Victoria Haley - WJ: +5 (Fuel Cache)Opponent:
- Stormwall - PC: 19 (bonded)
- 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
Hoarluk Doomshaper, Dire Prophet - WB: +3
- Scroll Bearer
- Mulg the Ancient - PC: 12
- Earthborn Dire Troll - PC: 10
- Dire Troll Mauler - PC: 9
- Troll Axer - PC: 6
Troll Whelps - PC: 2
Northkin Fire Eaters - Leader, Grunt, and Pyg Buddy: 4
Pyg Burrowers - Leader & 9 Grunts: 6
Krielstone Bearer & Stone Scribes - Leader & 3 Grunts: 3
- Stone Scribe Elder - Elder 1
THEME: Immovable Mountains - Tier 3
:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::
Two Fronts was the scenario again and this time Trolls went first. I deployed likewise as I had done in the first game but I realized that Haley can rarely go for scenario here, thus I put TAC in-between Stormwalls instead.
:: Game ::
Trolls run up. They are quite fast with their turn 1 bonuses!
The plan is yet again to Time Bomb to buy myself space. The Burrowers went down so my ATGM had to chill but realistically they are not getting anything done before they can start wrapping around and picking out stones regardless. So the right Stormwall walks up, shoots big guns at Mulg, 2 of which are boosted, deals quite a bit of damage and pods in front of him + Mauler, making sure Haley is within 16" of the pod. Haley then walks up, Time Bombs it and shoots Mulg for another point of damage (lucky roll). The bonded 'wall moves up as well and I am not that far away from simply removing Mulg straight away (he had 6 boxes left), some pretty nice shooting there! I spent covering fire to keep Haley safe in case the Burrowers wanted to try their luck and TAC clouded her to boost her DEF.
Doomie feat comes out and the beasts spread out. Implacability goes up, but crucially there's no admonition.
I decide to try and take out Mulg. If I can create that opening and keep my Stormwalls safe I'll have a significant advantage I believe. I put 4 focus on the bonded Stormwall and gives him Temporal before feating. He runs in and gets the job done, despite Doomie's feat being up. I also remove some squishy models nearby due to electro leaps and pod. TAC move up to block LoS to Haley completely while the ATGM start eating away at the Burrowers. The last Stormwall shoots up a Northkin and spends covering fire just because.
Doomie repudiates the Arcane Shield off my bonded 'wall and casts Strangehold, damaging it and thus "mini-feat Haley style" is felt by the colossal. He sets up heavies nearby to crush it but crucially, there's no implacability.
I thank him for the opportunity, put 4 focus on the bonded 'wall and TK the Earthborn into its melee range. The Stormwall kills him. The other Stormwall shoots another Northkin and covering fire is put up on Haley in case the remaining burrowers felt sneaky with a back strike charge run. TAC cloud her for DEF as well. Junior healed up fully due to having to run and having taken 3 wounds from Repudiate. ATGM move up and are looking for lucky knockdowns from Thunderbolt to force out some fury points on the beasts but I have no such luck.
Burrowers jam ATGM, Doomie moves up to get Rage on both beasts (one through his attachment). They charge and kill the Stormwall.
With both remaining beasts so tight together there's just one thing to do - Time Bomb! I move the remaining Stormwall up and pod, time bomb lands and I'm good again. TAC remove LoS to Haley, ATGM tank free strikes and Junior + Squire run into the trench.
The Axer frenzies and deals some damage to the Mauler, who blocks my zone. He has Admonition.
I Time Bomb the Mauler and boost damage. The Stormwall then finishes him off with its guns. At this point my opponent concedes the game.
Victory to the Swans!
:: Evaluation ::
This game I made some significant improves on my performance from game 1. I managed to use TAC more effectively early on and I learned the value of having them centrally when the game is more of an attrition setup than scenario. With implacability it's extremely hard to do the usual signature Haley-T2-feat-3-0 and follow up with 2 more points in T3. Game 1 vs Doomie3 showed that very well and in this I was instead focused on simply taking out his things. It worked better, was less risky and I had more control.
Time Bomb again is absolutely crucial and given the relatively low threat ranges on his beasts there's not a whole lot for him to do to stop it. As long as Haley gets the DEF and ARM she needs to not allow Doomie to simply walk up and nuke her it's really not a significant risk at all.
Taking out Mulg was probably the right thing to do. It did cost me the Stormwall but due to a lack of implacability he lost a beast as well. While this might seem like a lucky break on my part, I could easily have simply walked away with it, podded and Time Bombed. We'd be more or less back to where we were. Of course losing a turn's worth of attacks on a Stormwall is a big deal but considering I took out Mulg I think it's a solid trade for Cygnar.
Speaking of Mulg, there were a couple of tricks that could've been used here to heal him up. Spawn Welps for example and forcing him to regenerate D3, not just the D3 from Doomie's abilities. Furthermore elemental communion and more careful positioning could've allowed him to shrug off the shooting better. I think as Troll players learn how to approach this matchup they'll get better at seeing these small advantages and when combined, that totals up to a significantly harder attrition game for Cygnar.
These 2 games were highly valuable and I now know what to expect from Doomie3. It's a tough but interesting matchup and truly I believe I'll prefer facing him over Doomie1 Tier with walls.
EDIT: My opponent pointed out to me after this report was written that he forgot the +2ARM bonus during the first turn (tier bonus). This would've meant Mulg would be significantly less damaged and the game would likely have developed differently.