tirsdag 29. mars 2016

Battle at Lund: Invitationals #2 (#132): Haley2 vs Thagrosh1

:: Prologue ::

For the second game I faced Gustav and his Legion. Gustav is an experienced and skilled player who had a pairing which made me wonder what on Earth to do: While no Vayl2 or Lylyth2 were present he had Vayl1 (which Haley is up against I believe) and a Thagrosh1 tier list with a million mini-beasts on junior warlocks (is that even a term?), a list I have absolutely no experience against and no clue how I'd perform against. Anyway I dropped Haley2 because we had no 2-list requirement and he dropped Thagrosh1. Interesting...

:: Lists ::

Major Victoria Haley - WJ: +5
- Squire
- Stormwall - PC: 19
- Lightning Pod
- Thorn - PC: 8
Journeyman Warcaster - PC: 3
Eiryss, Angel of Retribution - PC: 3
Gastone Crosse - PC: 3
Reinholdt, Gobber Speculator - PC: 1
Lady Aiyana & Master Holt - Lady Aiyana & Master Holt: 4
Black 13th Gun Mage Strike Team - Lynch, Ryan & Watts: 4
Arcane Tempest Gun Mage Pistoleers - Leader & 5 Grunts: 6
- Arcane Tempest Gun Mage Officer - Officer 2
Thagrosh, Prophet of Everblight - WB: +5
- Ravagore - PC: 10
- Scythean - PC: 9
- Naga Nightlurker - PC: 5
Beast Mistress - PC: 3
- Harrier - PC: 0
- Harrier - PC: 0
- Harrier - PC: 0
Beast Mistress - PC: 3
- Harrier - PC: 0
- Harrier - PC: 2
Beast Mistress - PC: 3
- Shredder - PC: 2
- Stinger - PC: 2
Beast Mistress - PC: 3
- Stinger - PC: 2
- Stinger - PC: 2
Blighted Nyss Shepherd - PC: 1
Spawning Vessel - Vessel & 4 Grunts: 2
Spawning Vessel - Vessel & 6 Grunts: 3
Spawning Vessel - Vessel & 6 Grunts: 3
THEME: New Blood - Tier 4

:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::

The scenario was Fire Support and he went first. Fire Support is ok because as he goes first it is very hard, if not impossible, for him to use his early aggression to transition board control into a scenario push. Believe me, I've tried. So I chill out and instead deploy Haley so that she can get cover midgame with A+H nearby, Stormwall centrally and the rest on the opposite flank.

:: Game ::

Harriers fly away at full speed and Fog of War goes up.

Stormwall receives 2 focus, Haley takes 6. Stormwall activates first, boosts 2 shots (one of which hits) on the Harrier the furthest to the left and pods between the other 2. Thorn moves up. Haley Time Bombs the pod to weaken SPD and DEF of the Harriers. Thorn Reaction drives and I deadeye ATGM I believe. The Harriers all die following the rest of my shooting. It's a bit of a mess because Ryan and Gastone are nearly B2B with Thorn, a terrible technical mistake with a Ravagore on the field, but I'm hoping he'll take a shot at Haley instead. Haley stood still because relative to the Ravagore she is quite off-center (8" or so by my estimation) which means he shouldn't be able to reach her (31" between us straight across and he has a 32" max threat range on 2 turns without any boosts). Now he could've moved the Scythean behind to push him and I'd be in trouble, but I didn't consider the option at the time.

The first declared action is to have said Ravagore fire at Haley. A huge mess begins as we discuss and measure ranges etc. I think a judge spends literally over 5 minutes to figure out the exact position of the Ravagore and in the end I am right: He is out of range. The shot scatters off. This is a huge opening for me obviously and the Legion army can do little to protect the hapless Ravagore.

I smell blood in the water though and want more. The Scythean is in Stormwall threat range as well. The idea then is to Thunderbolt the Ravagore, TK the Scythean and take them both out under cover of Shift. This is exactly what I do and they both survive on a couple of boxes. Unfortunately I forget to Reaction Drive Thorn so he's a bit exposed.

The Scythean dies to a free strike. Thagrosh feats it back. Ravagore moves to jam Stormwall. Some units on the left side are outside of Shift range and they manage to cripple Thorn's arc node (but nothing else).

I'm massively up on attrition, scenario is a non-issue and I have control of the table and pace of the game. Only one thing to do: Back off and consolidate the position. I sacrifice a couple of jammed ATGM to clear the Stingers on my right flank, Stormwall tanks a free strike and shoots the Ravagore to death to get out of the Scythean's threat range. I finish my turn with Ryan launching a mage storm just to mess with his options, but lo and behold it scatters on Thorn (which I probably should've shot in the first place as he has few things with reach) so he cannot engage me with Harriers.

Thagrosh and the Scythean run up in a last, desperate gamble. Thagrosh camps 3 fury. I keep all focus on Haley, move up and TK + Time Bomb him. Eiryss shoots off tenacity, Aiyana follows up with kiss and before B13th are done activating (following Gastone) he goes down.

Victory to the Swans!

:: Evaluation ::

A decent game with a sound strategy. The Haley2 ice cold gamble was a little too close for comfort. I should've done my math more precisely (this is all elementary geometry after all). On the bright side the temptation kept my opponent from going for Gastone + Ryan, something which could seriously have compromised my ability to out-grind him.

I'm not sure what to think of the matchup. Time Bomb and Deadeye are huge spells here and I think it's in my favor because of these control elements. He also really struggles with the Stormwall because the Scythean and Ravagore are fairly easy to control (i.e. keep out of melee). Keeping a flexible mindset is a big deal here as a continued push post-feat could see me throw away the game.

2-0 and with hopefully no more Legion matches I was looking forward to game 3!

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