søndag 12. juni 2016

Battle Report #175: Haley2 vs Severius2

:: Prologue ::

Second game of the day and yet another Protectorate list opposite this. This time one of the anticipated powerhouses: Severius2. Let's jump straight to the action!

:: Lists ::

- Squire
- Stormwall
- Thorn
- Charger
Gobber Tinker
Arlan Strangeways
Storm Lances (max)
Hierarch Severius - WJ: +26
- Blessing of Vengeance - PC: 0
- Reckoner - PC: 3
- Reckoner - PC: 16
- Redeemer - PC: 11
- Hand of Judgment - PC: 18
Rhupert Carvolo, Piper of Ord - PC: 4
Wrack - PC: 1
Allegiant of the Order of the Fist - PC: 3
Choir of Menoth - Leader & 3 Grunts: 4
Temple Flameguard - Leader & 9 Grunts: 11
- Temple Flameguard Officer & Standard - Officer & Standard: 4

:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::

Same map, same scenario. I went first again. Unlike the Reznik-game, there was no possibility to go for pressure on the caster here so I resigned myself to the fact that I would have to play a game of attrition. I had little idea of how precisely to go about this but I knew Thorn would have to make a lot of work and I'd have to get the Lances and Stormwall online. My primary concern was Blessing because if I leave him alone Severius is able to put out way too much pressure.

To this end I deployed Stormwall offensively (i.e. opposite his flag), Storm Lances opposite my own flag, Haley to move to hill -> trench and the support spread out.

:: Game :: 

Stuff runs, deflection up, pre-measure to stay safe from Reckoners.

Blessing runs up and arcs Rebuke onto Storm Lances. Curiously the Choir decide to sing Passage instead of Shielding which makes little sense to me but I'll gladly take it. Furthermore Blessing is outside of their range and is unaffected.

My plan for this turn is to get the Lances online, position Thorn for the next turn and take out Blessing. The idea is to cast Domination on Blessing and use Charger + Stormwall + Lances to kill him. The Stormwall wants to put down Covering Fires as well to keep TFG at bay and as such it'll only get 1 shot on Blessing. The other shot is designated the TFG Officer which I'm hoping I'll take out to avoid their mini-feat. Blessing uses Oracular Vision to block the shot and I miss the Officer with the second. A pod tries to nail him but I roll triple 1s for damage and thus I have to face the inevitable minifeat + shield wall after all. Blessing does however go down to the Lances after the Charger has done a number of boxes on it. I am fairly happy with my position from the Stormwall to Thorn and Lances. Bring it, Protectorate!

Severius decides that this is a feat turn. Not surprising. He gets a 3 on the D3 roll and the Lances in range + Ragman all take heat. 2 Lances survive and 3 clouds go down. The jacks try and deal with Lances + Thorn but are largely unsuccessful.

I am very surprised to learn that Rebuke is now an upkeep! In otherwords that spell completely cripples my Lances. Wow, ok. The idea then is to have Thorn neutralize as many heavies as possible and have the Stormwall charge in to begin the attrition. Following this I would have to wait and see what the Lances could possibly do. I put 3 focus on Thorn, 1 on Stormwall and cast TA on it with Haley. I TK the Reckoner the furthest away around. Thorn disrupts both Reckoners and takes out Hand of Judgement's Cortex with Shock Shield. So much work! Stormwall charges in and kills Hand + half a Reckoner. The Lances start working on one as well. A very good turn.

Severius has to look for creative openings and lands on himself having to take out Thorn and TFG running to pressure Haley. Due to casting a spell for free he takes out Thorn with lots of focus left. That jack sure did a lot though! Despite Severius' personal intervention the Stormwall is unscathed and the TFG don't look that frightening.

The idea is to have the Stormwall bash both Reckoners and pod behind to kill the first row of 3x TFG. It does just this and Haley has all of her remaining focus to deal with the Allegiant + last few TFG with the help of Charger, Junior and a couple of Lances. 2 of them survive but the situation is under control.

TFG try and jam, severius + redeemer run towards the flag.

I clear out the remaining TFG and start scoring.

Severius is unable to do anything and the game ends with a Cygnar scenario win after I inevitably move to 5CP.

Victory to the Swans!

:: Evaluation ::

A very intense game! Unfortunately I think a lot of what transpired here hinges on a couple of mistakes that shouldn't happen. First of all: Storm Lances. With Rebuke being an upkeep I should not give Blessing such an easy angle to land this spell on them as it absolutely cripples their ability to exert pressure on the jacks. Secondly: The Protectorate's decision to sing Passage over Shielding, allowing me to take out Blessing and put everything into position for my ensuing turn. I think that given time, neither of these plays are as easy to pull off and that changes the dynamics of the matchup entirely. 

Regardless, the way the game evolved here I was able to send Thorn into a Reckoner which was disrupted under Shift, after which he disrupted said Reckoner and another in the following turn while Hand of Judgement lost its cortex (before being killed by the Stormwall). Definitely the MVP here. 

Severius2 looks dangerous. Getting control of Blessing early here was a key factor for my success. I think this matchup becomes a lot harder if Blessing is kept alive and safe. At the same time, Thorn is a huge pain for the Protectorate jacks. All in all an interesting matchup that is a lot more even in my opinion than Haley2 vs Protectorate felt like in Mk. 2. 

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