tirsdag 23. august 2016

Iron Moot: Invitationals #2 (#273): Haley2 vs Wurmwood

:: Prologue ::

For my second game I drew Michael Dick from Scotland and his Circle. I was truly very happy with this pairing as I wanted to try out Haley2 against Wurmwood in less of a list-chicken situation. Michael turned out to be a great opponent and I got the pairing I wanted so it was most definitely game time!

:: Lists ::

(Haley 2) Major Victoria Haley [+25]
- Thorn [13]
- Stormwall [39]
- Squire [5]
- Ironclad [12]
Journeyman Warcaster [4]
- Minuteman [9]
Captain Arlan Strangewayes [4]
Gobber Tinker [2]
Storm Lances (min) [12]
Wurmwood, Tree of Fate & Cassius the Oathkeeper - WB: +27
-    Wurmwood, Tree of Fate & Cassius the Oathkeeper (Cont.)
-    Warpwolf Stalker - PC: 19 (Battlegroup Points Used: 19)
-    Pureblood Warpwolf - PC: 17 (Battlegroup Points Used: 8)
-    Gorax Rager - PC: 7
Wrong Eye - Wrong Eye & Snapjaw: 17
-    Snapjaw
War Wolf - PC: 2
War Wolf - PC: 2
War Wolf - PC: 2
Reeves of Orboros - Leader & 9 Grunts: 16
-    Reeve of Orboros Chieftain & Standard - Chieftain & Standard: 4
Sentry Stone & Mannikins - Leader & 3 Grunts: 5
Sentry Stone & Mannikins - Leader & 3 Grunts: 5
Shifting Stones - Leader & 2 Grunts: 3
Shifting Stones - Leader & 2 Grunts: 3

:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::

The scenario was Extraction and I went first. The idea was to dominate a part of the table that was fairly open with favourable terrain for me and force the issue on scenario. True, he scores first but I think Haley has the tools to move up and ahead here. I deploy the Storm Lances opposite this flank and the rest behind it.

:: Game ::

With Michael skewing left so hard the Lances would be dead in the water if they tried to advance there so I immediately skewed them to the right instead and had the Ironclad + Thorn on left flank duty.

Michael splits his sentry stones and doesn't cast the "forest spell" with Wurmwood. I find this kind of strange because my biggest problem with Wurmwood is usually being denied LoS and thus unable to perform tricks.

Time to put the WW-tech into play! I could not have asked for a better setup. True, I've fucked up with Thorn, a lesson I learned many games ago is that Thorn needs to run up hard and fast on my strong flank in this matchup but I've forgot about it and he's now uselessly sitting in the middle where I can't really use him in fear of Reeves and tricks. Anyway! On the right flank I can launch the Minute-missile to kill the stone there and I can even get him behind an obstruction so that removing him becomes a really tricky deal. Awesome. Said stone dies, Haley is safely tucked away and my heavy hitters are positioned to counter-punch Wurmwood if he tries to punish my Minuteman. The Stormwall even got to shoot quite a few boxes off of the Pureblood.

Wurmwood keeps his defensive position. The left flag is completely uncontested so he gets it easily. To my surprise he decides to go for the Minuteman and feat. It is dicey whether the jack even dies but he does. Regardless this is a very, very good spot for me. Can you see why?

The trick here is to move up a Lance next to my flag and have the Ironclad throw said Lance on the 'stalker. The Stormwall with TA can then trample his way over there and probably kill the Stalker, possibly also the Pureblood with hot dice since I shot so many boxes off of him last turn. Haley covers them with Shift and catches out just about everything in the Circle army worth catching. I camp a couple if he wants to go all in. Unfortunately Thorn is in a crap position here and I'm worried that me not getting him up and around on the right flank will limit my options despite the solid counter-move I found.

Michael panics a bit here. It's still only 1-1 and he can move to 2-1 easily enough. However he concludes that he has to go all in on the Stormwall and casts Wraithbane on the Pureblood which then tries to one-round the Stormwall. This fails and to add insult to injury Wurmwood's now sitting on 0 fury, 0 souls and no concealment to trigger Prowl.

The Stormwall got heavily mangled by the Pureblood. It's far from dead but it likely won't survive Snapjaw. I figure that assassinating the tree now is my best chance at winning this game, he's even cut himself for a few boxes due to fury mess-ups before. I go for the kill with 3 big gun shots from the 'wall and a boosted bolt arced via Thorn. The massive tree goes down!

Victory to the Swans!

:: Evaluation ::

Michael told me he doesn't have a lot of experience with this matchup and coupled with the Sunday Syndrome this ensures that I get way more openings than I should have I think. If the sentries combine in the center and Wurmwood shifts left with his forest spell edging the forest it becomes a serious skew game where his feat could be a big deal. This also allows him to get up Cassius earlier which in turn allows him to probably threaten the Stormwall with an early Curse of Shadows, which can be game breaking here.

The Minuteman move on the right flank basically shapes the entire game. I think the correct play here is to leave him alone and accept the fact that the sentry is dead. DEF16 is a thing and, as was shown, the positions he had to take up to make this possible was a trap. Michael told me he forgot about Trample though and this is a big deal of this play so an honest mistake there based on not knowing the matchup.

2-0 and I was ready for the semi-finals of the invitational tournament! Another rematch was brewing...

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