Haley2 vs Mortenebra proved to be an interesting matchup with a ton of speed and jack-based flexibility on both sides. Going into this game I was hoping to further leverage my ranged superiority.
:: Lists ::
Major Victoria Haley - WJ: +5Opponent:
- 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
Master Necrotech Mortenebra - WJ: +4
- Deathjack - PC: 12
- Stalker - PC: 4
- Scavenger - PC: 4
- Leviathan - PC: 9
- Helldiver - PC: 3
- Helldiver - PC: 3
Gorman di Wulfe, Rogue Alchemist - PC: 2
Warwitch Siren - PC: 2
Bane Knights - Leader & 9 Grunts: 10
The Withershadow Combine - Malevolus, Admonia, & Tremulus: 5
:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::
For this game we decided to reverse the initiative just to mix it up a little. This didn't affect my overall strategy too much but it did mean mister Stormwall would get far up the field without having to shoot stuff in his first activation. I know from experience that this in and of itself gives me more space so I was hoping to make the most of that in terms of bringing the shooting up the table as well and keeping Haley safe.
Stuff ran up.
The Cryx reply is a lot like in our previous games.
A big difference however is that with the ATGM this far up I can get a lot of work done in my turn 2. The idea was, as with the last game, to try and KD DJ and have the Stormwall pummel him. This time however Thorn allowed me to land Deadeye on Gun Mages. Range was an issue as I only got 2 models within 10 of said DJ, but it was enough as I landed the Crit. The Stormwall went in and killed DJ again, Gorman went down also and I engaged Leviathan. Haley was safely put away in a physical ring of models to prevent Overrun + Helldiver shenanigans.
Cryx basically spend the turn under Shift to position and look for T3 openings. Morty runs off to the right corner with 7 focus camped.
I figure that if I can land a Crit Thunderbolt on Mortenebra I should be able to kill her despite the focus camped. I put 4 focus on Stormwall + Temporal to have it wack the Leviathan and Withershadow after my deadeyed Gun Mages discover that Morty is Steady. Haley backpedals and is surrounded by a careful array of models that cannot be slammed into her by Helldivers. Eiryss runs up to block all jack models from receiving focus.
My opponent tries to find openings for Haley with the Helldivers under Terminal Velocity and feat but it cannot be done as he just cannot land where he needs to.
I kill Mortenebra with Deadeye Crit Brutal Gun Mages, the Stormwall and B13th (also with deadeye) standing ready as well.
Victory to the Swans!
This game ran a lot like clockwork. I think the key to this matchup is controlling DJ + Leviathan. If you can do that while keeping Haley safe from the lights then you are good to go. Mortenebra can cripple the Stormwall with Void Gate from DJ but it takes a lot and even then I'm not sure if it's worth it as it puts said DJ into a very awkward position. As we've seen in previous games the rest of the list shoots hard enough to make a significant impact, doubly so with Haley having all the focus in the world for Time Bomb etc. If Eiryss is out of position then Spectral Steel will indeed be a problem but that should be doable for Cygnar to handle.
Despite the game going so well the Helldivers + Stalker still came a little too close for comfort in the end. There is just literally no way to stop them from slowly but surely getting to you. This puts pressure on the other player, in this case me, to achieve a lot in the early turns. Luckily Haley typically does just that, but I still believe Mortenebra has plenty game into her as the angles and setups are virtually impossible to defend against. For Cygnar's it's about controlling the heavies and evading the lights. For Cryx it's about getting up the table without having the Stormwall run rampant through your lines. In this series, at least the last 2 games, I was able to find the openings I needed. I must say I am very curious to see what lists will look like in Mk. 3. I have a feeling the more mixed-approach lists we see such as in this game (both players having a significant battlegroup investment) will be the standard. If it is I think Cygnar will have a very exciting time!