torsdag 17. november 2016

Battle Report #348: Stryker3 vs Vlad1

:: Prologue ::

It's been a while since my last Stryker3 game! Longer than I would have hoped for. Anyway, it is what it is and it's time to get back into it. I spent about an hour yesterday looking through various approaches for Stryker3. I think there are lots of interesting builds that should probably be tried with him. However models, time and painting requirements in upcoming tournaments put some restrictions on what I can and cannot do.

For starters I opted for a slight variation of what I ran previously. One the issues I had was that I had very little in terms of non-linear or far-reaching threats. It occured to me that Thorn has a base threat of 16" with Stryker3. Between Escort and Reaction Drive he's amazing. He's also cheap enough to be used as a diversion while I set up and getting to choose between Iron Aggression and Fury depending on what I need is amazing.

:: Lists ::

(Stryker 3) Lord General Coleman Stryker [+28]
 - Ironclad [12]
 - Thorn [13]
 - Squire [5]
 - Ironclad [12]
Storm Lances (max) [20]
Storm Lances (min) [12]
Trencher Infantry (max) [16]
Lanyssa Ryssyl, Nyss Sorceress [3]
Gobber Tinker [2]
Ragman [4]
Rhupert Carvolo, Piper of Ord [4]
(Vladimir 1) Vladimir Tzepesci, The Dark Prince [+28]
 - Torch [18]
 - Behemoth [24]
 - Reinholdt, Gobber Speculator [4]
Winter Guard Rifle Corps (min) [8]
 - Winter Guard Rocketeer (3) [6]
Greylord Outriders (max) [20]
Kovnik Jozef Grigorovich [4]
Winter Guard Mortar Crew [5]
Winter Guard Mortar Crew [5]
Winter Guard Field Gun Crew [4]
Orin Midwinter, Rogue Inquisitor [5]

:: Pre-Battle Thoughts & Deployment ::

We are playing Extraction and I get to move first. I want to grab board space but keep back to not suffer the worst of his shooting. I deploy fairly symmetrically and I hope I can weigh towards one flank and maybe get a scenario angle. My feat and Fury provide me with tons of hitting power. Even ARM20 jacks have to respect that. Khador deploys with Vlad + jacks centrally, WGRC on one flank and the Outriders on the other.

 :: Game ::

I cast Iron Aggression on one Ironclad, Fury on the other. Reaction Drive Thorn ahead. Cast Escort, move stuff up behind clouds, run Thorn waaay up in a central trench.

Khador replies with a very cautious advance. Vlad casts Blood of Kings and camps 3 to be safe from Thorn. Both heavies respect Thorn's threat range. I imagine that with no repairs his Shield is a problem, potentially. A mortar knocks down two Trenchers.

I push the clouds further. I decide to commit Thorn to take out the Field Gun and force him to spend a lot of time and effort to clear out his back lines. I give him Iron Aggression and charge in. The rest get in position behind the clouds, eagerly awaiting my next turn.

Vlad does not have the numbers and tools to deal with everything at once. He tries to focus on the Trenchers and Thorn but I have sufficient numbers left to form a bit of a cloudwall next turn.

My games with Stryker3 thus far have usually boiled down to a "surge turn", basically a turn in which I tend to commit a large portion of my army. In this game this is clearly that turn. What I try to accomplish here is to move to 3-0 and keep enough threats on both flags to possibly move to 5-0 next turn. To do that I send in all the lances, some to kill a couple of Outriders, some to jam Rifles. I have to commit an Ironclad as well to kill the objective but to be honest that's fine: I don't really need more power here. He really, really needs to take out all of my things in his lines.

Vlad feats. Torch tries to clear up on the left flank with the WGRC and Behemoth kills the Ironclad. Outriders try and do a number on the Lances but 13/17 is legit, even against Signs and Portents.

This mop-up is fairly straight-forward. Ragman pops death field and camps the flag, Stryker pops feat and kills an Outrider. Ironclad kills Torch, Lances kill the remaining two Outriders.

Victory to the Swans!

:: Evaluation ::

As some may notice this is not my army. At least not most of it. I forgot to bring my models today, but luckily enough one of my club mates, Christian, let me borrow his. Christian is also obviously a swan and you can read his blog here.

Model-issues aside: Playing into shooting with Stryker3 is hard. He does very little to help my army against it. However Thorn was huge here. He disrupted the Khador lines (no pun intended) which bought me the time and space I needed to set up for the scenario take down. I am of course afraid that these changes will mean I have too little meat. I would really have loved in-faction Alexia1 here but I simply can't afford 14 points.

I have multiple other lists I want to try out. For now though this felt good to play. Stryker3 does a single thing for his army and that is ensuring things hit, hard. Escort is his saving grace and I think a list needs to be designed around this. I have considered ridiculous skews with him as well and indeed that might be the most legit approach for him. We'll see!

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