lørdag 28. mai 2016

Battle Report #163: Trying out Mk. 3!

:: Prologue ::

My activity has been low lately. With no major events left in Mk. 2 the motivation simply hasn't been there. Now, it's back again! Until the rules are officially released the games will, to a certain degree, be based on faulty rules and lacking information. We are a group of people however who believe we now have enough info to make games meaningful in terms of learning Mk. 3 and our factions.

Onto this very first game, then! There has been a lot of dojoing lately. We have an amazing Cygnar chat on Facebook which is hyper-active these days with a lot of good discussions, input and feedback. However you only get so far without actually playing. Today I finally had the chance and the matchup was Caine2 vs Rasheth. Let's jump to it!

:: Lists ::

- Reinholdt
- Stormwall
- Charger
Aiyana & Holt
- Murdoch
Trenchers (min)
- UA
Trench Buster
Arlan Strangeways
- Bronzeback
- Gladiator
- Titan Sentry
- Titan Sentry
- Agonizer
Beast Handlers (min)
Beast Handlers (max)

:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::

The scenario was Incursion and I went first. The idea was to shift slightly towards one side. Based on the terrain I anticipated Skorne would shuffle left so I sat up for shuffling right. It didn't occur to me just how much AD my list had until I actually deployed. A big front line of models to be sure!

:: Game ::

I run the Rangers up, pre-measuring to keep them outside of the Nihilators' jam range. Trenchers started moving slightly right while Rangers started moving slightly left. I was a little too cautious with Aiyana & Holt.

Skorne run up in return and Rasheth scatters one arced AOE3 onto a sole Trencher who toughs. Another one from himself goes dead ahead and kills a couple of models.

Now, T1 I cast Bullet Dodger on Caine. It's mostly because I don't know when I'll need it and the thinking is that while he has it up it saves me a focus as opposed to casting it when I need it. Now for my second turn my goal was to kill the Soulward to prevent Eyeless Sight and Trick Shot would be a good start. I moved Rangers into position and shot up a few. Caine then took out the Soulward but due to abysmal damage rolls I didn't get as many trick shots as I had wanted to on the Nihilators before I had to jump away again. The Stormwall followed up with putting the hurt on the Gladiator after Caine had pinged a few wounds off of it. Covering Fires went down as well. I felt fairly confident with my position as I didn't see what the Skorne could do about my right flank. Pre-measuring also allowed my shooting to get perfect distances and stay out of threat ranges.

This turn had an interesting start as it was revealed to me just why bigger investments in Beast Handlers might be a thing: They can heal multiple times! Ok, note to self: Grievous wounds is a thing. Use it. Just once is sufficient. However the next move completely caught me off guard: Rasheth physically moved up towards Caine and started casting AOEs on the Trenchers. After he got 2 of them scattering dead ahead and landing on Caine with boosted damage rolls, the game was suddenly over as my low-ARM caster died.

:: Evaluation ::

I was a little dumbfounded by the game-winning move I must admit. Rasheth was visible for my entire army and had his second nuke missed he would've had 3 fury, not nearly enough to survive. I do suppose though that the Skorne were in a desperate position: I had a Trench Buster sitting on the right flag, the Charger might've taken the left flag and the Stormwall would surely contest the center at the very least. On top of this Caine's trick shots kept clearing out support and infantry and his beasts, despite the heals, were still a little damaged. He was quickly losing on attrition and had to do something. Still though, scattering in the 1 direction you can and rolling the 4+ needed to get the correct distance. That is a longshot by anyone's standards.

Despite the short game I learned tons: Trenchers are great. Versatile, fairly cheap, tough is a bitch having to deal with. Max. Trenchers would definitely be nice. So would a second Buster to provide the damage output near them without committing too much. A+H+M are probably needed in this kind of list. I'm not 100%, but I believe they belong here. Stormwall did its job as expected and Arlan + Power Up ensured it could do its job without needing anything from Caine. It should also be noted that if Skorne had committed Beasts in T2 by for example simply running the 4 of them up, Caine would eventually only have to commit 1 focus to max out his allocation allowance. I've considered double Defenders but if I switch out Caine's battlegroup that likely won't be what I'll take. If it comes to it and I have to commit to combat the focus pull on Caine is too big.

The killing shots I have to write off as pure luck. Nothing can be done about these and you can't start playing like a paranoid either. True, it could be worthwhile discussing whether Arcane Shield or Bullet Dodger is most valuable to have on him early game. It's not as though the Stormwall needed the extra armour at that point in time in this matchup anyway. In most cases though Caine's survivability relies on his defense and boosting this even further is beneficial, I believe.

On the table next to me a couple of guys were playing Rhulic Mercs vs Baldur2 double gargantuans. If that, or something similarly extremely skewed, becomes a thing I have to re-think my approach to breaking arm. I think Haley2 can deal with ARM20 BG spam fairly well, but this is on a whole different level.

Lots of new impressions and lots of things to think about. Back to dojoing! Hopefully the next game will be before too long. Hopefully it will last beyond the second turn as well.

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