søndag 19. juni 2016

Battle Report #186: Sloan vs Vyros2

:: Prologue ::

With a very quick first game we had time for another. We discussed how Retribution should approach the game and ended up on a skewed variants where the heavies would anchor one flank, lights in the middle and Halbs on the wide flank to pressure scenario mid-game.

:: Lists ::

Captain Kara Sloan - WJ: +28
- Reinholdt, Gobber Speculator - PC: 4
- Firefly - PC: 0
- Firefly - PC: 0
- Hunter - PC: 0
- Hunter - PC: 10
- Defender - PC: 16
- Defender - PC: 16
Gun Mage Captain Adept - PC: 5
Storm Lances - Leader & 2 Grunts: 12
Storm Lances - Leader & 2 Grunts: 12
Vyros, Incissar of the Dawnguard - WJ: +27
-    Griffon - PC: 0
-    Griffon - PC: 0
-    Griffon - PC: 0
-    Griffon - PC: 5
-    Imperatus - PC: 22
-    Sphinx - PC: 13
-    Sphinx - PC: 13
Arcanist Mechanik - PC: 2
Arcanist Mechanik - PC: 2
Houseguard Halberdiers - Leader & 9 Grunts: 13
-    Houseguard Halberdier Officer & Standard - Officer & Standard: 4
-    Soulless Escort - PC: 1

:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::

I basically had the same approach as with my last game here except I put the Hunters on the opposite flank to counter his heavies. 

:: Game ::

Retribution runs up.

I make a heavy move towards the left flank where I feat to try and take out Imperatus. Sloan misses one shot and Imperatus survives on 3 boxes.

Halbs move further up. A single Griffon runs to take the flag on the right, forcing an early reaction on my part. Imperatus runs up to jam me.

I have a choice to make: Do I go for a play to contest the right flag or try and rush scenario myself? I figure my Lances might be able to hold out for long enough so I decide for the latter. The Lances try and shoot the Griffon to e-leap Halberdiers but I can't get through shield wall. Reform takes all the Lances away from harm except the one which has to contest. On the left the Lances spread out: 2 of them prepare to counter-charge the Griffon(s) contesting me while the 3rd kills Imperatus. Sloan is a little afraid of Griffons and I make a mis-play here as she goes too far away. At this point in time the Defenders could've moved up to physically be her guards with the Fireflies up front. I needed her to threaten the table and have a bigger impact but instead she went in the wrong direction. 1-0.

Retribution capitalizes on my overly defensive position by making a heavy move for scenario. One Griffon fleets to contest the top-left flag, one takes the bottom-right, Halbs charge in to kill the contesting Lance and establish a big Retribution-zone around my objective (which is taken out as well). Vyros feats and stays behind the obstacle in the center. 1-2.

I bring the central Sphinx down to a couple of boxes. However the Lances annoyingly don't manage to impress the left-most Griffon and my Hunter is still locked down and I don't score. I try and kill the Halberdiers Officer with a Firefly because the Leader is so far away that a ton of them will end up out of CMD but I roll 1 too little. Lances move to contest there again. Sloan is again a little too defensive.

The Halbs charge in to stop any and all attempts from my side at getting towards the bottom-right flag. The Griffons in the top-left corner make a mess of things as I'm down to 1 Lance and a severely damaged Hunter. Vyros moves to 3 CP but crucially camps 0 (!) focus and keeps his central position.

Regardless of what I do scenario-wise Vyros can get to 5 in his ensuing turn. The Griffons in the top-left corner have done what they needed to do: Delaying my scoring while Vyros moves ahead. As such I had one option left: Kill Vyros. He was sitting at DEF19 ARM20 vs Sloan and the Defenders. The Hunters would have to target DEF15 ARM20 and of them would have to tank a Griffon free strike. 

Sloan assigns 1 focus to the Firefly so it can boost + boost to take out the Sphinx which it does. I then follow up with Guided Fire and 2 shots into Vyros, one of which misses. The hit scores 5 damage or so. Both Defenders are able to aim so 50/50 for them as well. One miss and the hit score 4 damage. The first Hunter lands a hit but flukes the damage roll, a 1 or 2 if memory serves. It all comes down to the laster Hunter and the Griffon engaging it. The damage roll has to be big and the Griffon misses the Free Strike. Unfortunately, I miss the 8+ attack roll and Vyros survives. 

:: Evaluation ::

A very tight game with lots of learning points! My strategical mistake here was to start shuffling in the first place. There is no need for me to go left. While Vyros keeps pushing me in the center I don't have the force projection to both push for the left myself, keep the center at bay -and- contest the right. Instead I think the right play is to keep the majority of my army more centrally, i.e. behind my own objective, 

The matchup is a lot more playable than I had feared. The Lances do a ton of work here. Their main problem is Vyros' multiple angles and all they have to consider. However the firepower Sloan puts out is insane and it gets to the point where Vyros, despite deceleration, has to really be careful about not only where he goes himself but with how aggressive he plays his jacks as well. 

This was a great game and I learned a lot about both Sloan, my list, Retribution and the dynamics of a matchup like this. My opponent capitalized on my mistakes and got a deserved win. Rest assured, I will come back stronger! Next time, I might bring Ashley instead of the GMCA. The last 5 points of the list are still up for discussion. 

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