My gaming group usually shares battle reports in email form after a tournament and I thought it might make a good article instead! I’m going to do a brief summary in the introduction, then after each Bat Rep and finally a summary at the end.
Okay, I took my new pairing to a Store Wars tournament at Black Knight. The were 28 players with a strong Skorne presence and only a single Cryx (there were more mercs!).
My Cassius list is designed to tackle trolls and skorne so I looked forward to giving that a good test. My krueger list was focused on scenario and assasination, cygnar with stormwall worried me, especially if Seige was in there, but it was a good testing ground for the pair.
Krueger the Stormlord - WB: +5 - Brennos the Elderhorn - PC: 9 - Wold Guardian - PC: 9 - Gorax - PC: 4 - Warpwolf Stalker - PC: 10 Una the Falconer - PC: 3 - Rotterhorn Griffon - PC: 3 - Rotterhorn Griffon - PC: 3 Blackclad Wayfarer - PC: 2 Shifting Stones - Leader & 2 Grunts: 2 - Stone Keeper - Keeper 1 Druids of Orboros - Leader & 5 Grunts: 7 - Druid of Orboros Overseer - Overseer 2
Cassius the Oathkeeper - WB: +6 - Wurmwood, Tree of Fate - Druid Wilder - Gorax - PC: 4 - Warpwolf Stalker - PC: 10 - Ghetorix - PC: 11 Gallows Grove - PC: 1 Gallows Grove - PC: 1 Shifting Stones - Leader & 2 Grunts: 2 - Stone Keeper - Keeper 1 Swamp Gobbers Bellows Crew - Leader & 1 Grunt: 1 Tharn Ravagers - Leader & 5 Grunts: 9 - Tharn Ravager Chieftain - Chieftain 2 Druids of Orboros - Leader & 5 Grunts: 7 - Druid of Orboros Overseer - Overseer 2 Farrow Bone Grinders - Leader & 5 Grunts: 3
ROUND 1 vs RETRIBUTION- Chris Heggmann
Scenario: Two Fronts
Chris had evyros out of tier with 2 units of mittens and an Ossyan list. I knew he’d drop evyros and with birdseye and pathfinder available Cassius wouldn’t do.
I won inititative and deployed with the intention of either making a play for scenario or more likely assassinating. Chris’ battle group was deployed in line in the center with mittens and Erryis flanking. Counter magic would protect against the mittens.
I pushed up and Chris did his turn forgetting to put up synergy.
On the top of two I knew I would be feating so I pulled in a griffon with force bolts and beat on it a bit with Brennos before throwing it away with a rotterhorn. I pushed everything back but Kreueger was not positioned to dominate either zone.
Chris moved up as best he could and continued flanking with the mittens and feated.
Turn 3 and my choice was to clear his zone and dominate or go for assassination. Impertatus was lingering dangerously close to his zone and I didnt like the long game over there. My riphorn was in range of Vyros campoing two with a TK but an Aspis and an arcanist were in the way. I shifted up a gallows and knew I was in range to TK the Aspis out of the lane but the arcanist was not and he was on a hill. Here I was posed an interesting problem, if I killed the arcanist Vyros could make a feat move away. I decided to do my other moves and think about it. Stupidly I primalled the riphorn with the gorax in anticipation. Rotterhorns two handed threw griffons at each other to keep vyros using resources or deny synergy and Una cleared off a few mittens.
When I got around to the real problem again I realized I would either have to go chips in and charge kreuger up to TK the arcanist out or put up Rites of Dawn and let the Riphorn bulldoze his way through. This was where I realized primalling the riphorn so early was a big mistake.
I didn’t feel comfortable with the odds of either missing the TK or the Riphorns capacity to put vyros down at dice minus 2 so I put up Rites and bulldozed the riphorn in even though it meant I lost primals benefits but would still pay the cost.
The riphorn missed his charge and only hit for 3 damage overall. I finished by positioning Brennos in threat range of vyros if he happened to be standing there in my following turn.
Chris built synergy as best he could but with Imperatus being out of control (force bolted him out in my turn) and the number of knocked down griffons made it difficult. In the end I lost a few druids and the Riphorn was damaged but still functional.
My turn and the riphorn frenzied on vyros doing 8.
There were a number of models around vyros but most problematic was annysa who was standing where I’d like to put Brennos. I decided if I based her with Brennos I should be in reach range and went about the process of delivering him. Gorax Primalled Brennos and stones ported him up. Kreuger charged to get range and TK’d Brennos as close as I could get him but when we checked he was out by the smallest of fractions. Frazzled I moved on to Una and forgot to TK Krueger back leaving him on 5 fury. I did what I could with the other pieces but it was most likely that Chris could get enough attacks on Kreuger to finish it.
Chris’ turn and he put one unit of mittens onto kreuger then a loaded griffon (after building synergy to 4) and easily finished kreuger.
GOAT THOUGHTS: I was happy with the way I played the game overall, I had a clear plan from the start and executed it quite well. If the riphorn had frenzied on Annysa or Chris had positioned her 1/32 of an inch closer to vyros, Brennos would have finished it. In the meanwhile Brennos did some work with his gun and stayed safe. Even if I had a traditional Kreuger battle group of Ghetorix/Stalker I seriously think attrition was a no go. Scenario MAY have been more playable but I have my doubts that I could play keep away long enough. That said I would have loved for the riphorn to be a Stalker as I could have just charged into reach range with primal onto vyros on the top of 3. That and Bulldoze does not offer as much scenario play as I may have first thought.
ROUND 2: vs Cygnar- Justin Knot
Justin had Seige and Ehaley, both with stormwall and I’ve played the Cassius/ Seige match and its not good, so I dropped Kreuger again knowing that the Stormwall would cause me a lot of trouble. Justin went with Haley.
I took first and was relieved at Justins deploy. Haley was on the left of the corner of my zone with his ATGMs even further left, so I knew the only scoring opportunities he’d have would be to dominate my zone. His hammer dwarves were all the way right on his zone and gorman even further right of that. I AD’d the druids on my far right to mess with the dwarves and stay as far away from the ATGMs as possible. I used my first turn to re-arrange my battle group around the end of my zone knowing he’d feat bottom of two and I would have to counter feat top of three. I also put up stormwall and flesh of clay.
Justin decided since I charged Una up the table he would be able to Temporal Accelerate the Stormwall and shoot her, forgetting about stormwall. Regardless he positioned the boom howlers in front of stormwall and ran stuff up.
My turn and I take down a couple boom howlers and position my battle group at the far end of my zone screening them with the rotterhorns and my objective.
Justin charges up the Boom howlers and the other infantry run/reposition. Storm wall takes out the objective and puts a boosted pod into Una. Haley feats. At this point the objective is gone and both rotter are on life support. I need to put something in front of stromwall. I TK the guardian up and he advances to be my speed bump. I kill a couple more booms and the druids continue to harass the dwarves, and I counter feat.
Justin kills the guardian and makes a play for a stone to shut down my teleport but with the feat and storm wall its hard and he fails. He really is in a dominant position now. All I have is Brennos and a rip horn to tackle an arcane shielded storm wall and that’s not good odds! The plan would have been to put a primalled rip horn in and do about 25 damage then see what happens but Justin must have been feeling overconfident because he moved Haley up to TK Brennos out of the stones and was out of range. He TK’d Haley back but I knew he was still in range and only camping 2.
My turn, gorax primals Brennos, stones teleport him up, Krueger charges Storm wall and TK’s Haley around and into melee with Brennos. Two hits and she’s dead.
GOAT THOUGHTS: Brennos kills casters, yes so can ghettorix but Brennos can do more than stand around and posture in the meantime. Yes Justin made a mistake, a pretty big one but it happens all the time when you are feeling in control. That said I was certainly feeling like I needed something with better damage output than the rip horn and I was really missing lightning strike.
ROUND 3: Cygnar (again!)- Heinky (call me Skippy)
Argh, ehaley and Siege again! I decided I would just use Cassius and experiment, Skippy just rolled random and Siege it was! This was all bad and no good, storm wall, nyss and black 13th, dear god.
I went first and since Skippy deployed his storm wall to the right of his objective I decided I’d try to make a play to dominate the outside left flag. I was certain I could kill the storm wall, I was just pretty sure that neither of my heavies would make it there. The flag was also on a hill, which would help a little bit against certain types of shooting.
Without getting into too much detail, my ravagers got pretty shot up but they did kill a few rangers and a black 13th by turn 2. I felt like Colonel Custard up on that hill facing all those guns.
Skippy’s turn 2 saw ghettorix take 15 damage from storm wall and all but the chieftan from the ravages killed. Oh and the stalker took 8 damage from a ground pounder and he still hadn’t feated!
My turn 3 and I clear the rangers from the flag and charge the stalker into the objective to score 2.
Skippy one shots the stalker with Seige under feat, storm wall misses Ghetto but I’m down to a few druids.
My turn 4 and I notice Skippy has put arcane shield on Siege. Probably a good idea, a well placed hellmouth and Ghetto could probably get to him. I clear the flag again with Cassius (who also Curse of Shadows the Storm wall) and try to kill Gorman but no luck. The Gorax primals Ghetto and the stones port him in, this is where I realize that I haven’t healed Ghettos mind or body, d’oh! Skippy says that’s pretty much game and then I remember the druids have medicate, so I move one over and heal his body. Ghetto destroys the storm wall even though he misses an attack.
Skippy kills Ghetto, Gorman black oils Cassius and I have no pieces that can deal with the 3 DEF 14 models contesting the flag never mind the 9 nyss storming through the zone.
My turn and Cassius does his best but can’t hit a single boosted 12, the gorax goes in to be blade practice for the nyss.
Skippys turn and the tree takes a pounding and Cassius dies.
THOUGHTS: Yup, that match is as bad as it looks on paper. My Kruger list needs to deal with cygnar if I am to keep this pairing. I was happy with my inventive scenario ploy but it was pretty hopeless.
ROUND 4: Khador vs Justin K
Scenario: Close Quarters
Justin had Epic Sorcha and Vlad3 tier. I was worried about Sorcha into Cassius and I had just played a game vs a very similar Vlad3 list the day before with Krueger, so I dropped Krueger. Justin went with Vlad. Oh, I hate this scenario with Krueger so I knew I would have to attrition or assassinate.
Justin went first and everything went right up to the half line, yup, turn 1 feat time!
I tried to do a bit of damage before feating but just put some damage on the Koldun ponies. I feated and got ready to try and kill things next turn.
Justin turn 2 and he did what he could, the ponies sprayed each other doing some damage to the rotter and the battle engine put out some difficult terrain. Justin positioned his Ulhans very well, two up front and the other 3 behind about 8 to 9″. I couldn’t get to them but they would kill whatever went in on the front two.
My turn 2 and the guardian charges the battle engine and kills it. I try to eliminate the two front Ulhans without melee but I have to put in the rip horn to deal with them. Krueger TK’s the guardian and Rip horn back. I know the rip horn is in serious trouble but I hope the Guardian is out of range of Draigo.
Justins turn 3 and Draigo is in but comes up 5 boxes shy of killing the guardian. Vlad feats and the Ulhans charge in killing the guardian and put a ton of hurt on the rip horn. The Ulhans then sidestep and sprint into the rest of my force. The solo finishes the rip horn and I’m feeling some serious pressure.
My turn and I kill 2 Ulhans leaving 1, bottle up Draigo with stones and Una and her birds go on a rampage killing the ponies down to 1 and removing Fenris completely. I think I also kill the character solo with Kruegers gun.
Justins turn 5 and he does a bit of damage but he’s not liking the attrition options and recognizes that I don’t have much anywhere near my flag. He camps 6 (upkeeps a spell) and runs to dominate my flag. He also runs a Draken to shield Vlad with.
My turn and I want to kill Vlad, I feel like the attrition situation isn’t too bad but scenario is falling apart. I can make it with Brennos, despite the woods (which Ghetto, lacking pathfinder, wouldn’t be able to do) but I need to remove the Draken. I primal a rotter and it charges and dismounts the Draken (yah 360 LOS), then UNA puts him down with bird shots. Krueger TK’s Brennos and then advances and TK’s himself to TK Vlad around and closer. Brennos charges and the first hit does 8, the second damage roll is 21 (at dice minus 6) and he’s dead.
GOAT THOUGHTS: Okay in this situation I can say with certainty that ghetto would have not done it because he lacks pathfinder. Would a Stalker have done as well? Depends, on average it does 15pts where Brennos does 16 but Brennos has that opportunity to spike on 4 dice. That said I would have killed for lightning strike in this game as I could have backed up the guardian further and still had it.
For an initial outing I was satisfied, the first 3 rounds were challenging for my pair but it gave me a lot of valuable experience with the Krueger list vs storm wall. That and the other games have convinced me I am going to drop the rip horn for a stalker and fit in a wilder somehow, Lightning Strike might be just too integral to how Circle plays!
Oh and as far as Brennos goes, I am optimistic as to his potential. I like being able to put flesh of clay on him and the ability to cast an additional lightning strike while still doing a fully boosted gun is reasonable for his cost.