After a long (LONG long) hiatus, we’re finally back! With apologies for the delay (due to power outages, a massive bout of flu which floored 1/3rd of our hosts, and invasions of family!), we’re proud to offer a new battle report!
In a small break from tradition, I threw this podcast up BEFORE I finished writing the battle report itself (gasp of indignation!). But now I’ve gone through and finished the write-up, so if you didn’t see it before, you would never know it wasn’t a complete Battle Report at the time! Ah, temporal mechanics… anyway! Listen, read, enjoy!
This week’s battle report saw my noble forces of Cygnar against the fanatical forces of Nick’s Retribution. Nick is still trying to come to grips with Garryth, and I wanted a nice, fun game that I wouldn’t beat myself up too much if I lost, so I went with one of my favourite warcasters, the beautiful Kara Sloan. I love her, but I knew that she’s not a great match-up against a lot of Retribution… but that awesome rifle of hers can get work done, so I was happy to throw her on the table!
The scenario we rolled was “Supply and Demand” (one central 12″ zone and 2 objectives that can be destroyed for 1 CP and give free Charges when dominated), and I won the initiative, letting me go first. Nick picked table side, and I began to set up my army.
Not a lot of models, I admit, but an awful lot of both heavy hitters (Stormwall, Avenger, Katherine, and her Lances), accurate firepower (Sloan herself, the Stormcallers), and on Feat turn? F’getaboutit… Deadeye and Feat would make sure nothing missed.
Plus, my Boomhowlers… I can’t wait to see how they perform!
The Stormwall went smack in the middle, with Kara, her entourage, and the Avenger to my right, Boomhowlers all to the left, and Katherine and the Lances FAR to the left. The two Stormcallers went behind the Stormwall, and I tried my best not to look nervous as Nick set up wave after wave of his men.
Garryth, Blade of Ios
Battle Mage Magister
Houseguard Halberdiers (max) with UA
Mage Hunter Infiltrators (MHI), (max)
Mage Hunter Strike Force (MHSF), (max) with UA
Mage Hunter Assassin (MHA)
No Narn, which surprised me a little… but I suppose he didn’t have the extra point for him. Anyway! Nick set up the block of Halberdiers with Garryth and Sylys near the middle, the Phoenix to the left and the Chimera to the right. The MHI (gaining Advanced Deploy due to Eiryss) went opposite my Boomhowlers and Lances, and the Strike Force went across from Kara and the Avenger.
For the record, Aaron hand-crafted those concrete blocks to have small magnets in each of the pieces so that they can be blown apart by stray shots. The current rules for them have them as ARM25 with 1 hp… anything over that value obliterates the piece (and possibly removes the Cover for whatever is cowering behind them!).
Anyways, the table was set, the armies were ready… it was time to rumble!
Cygnar Turn 1
So, my first priority was to get all my guns up the table without dying. You know, trickier than it sounds!
Sloan allocates 1 to the Avenger.
Avenger goes first and runs forward 8″. I forget sometimes how slow the lumbering Avenger/Centurion/Hammersmith chasis is… Nick’s Halberdiers can actually walk further in Shield Wall than my Avenger can run (and with Reform afterwards, can actually move considerably further!).
The Stormwall walks up 5″, fires out a lightning pod towards my right side, and then drops Covering Fire templates (I doubt that Nick has anything that can or will get in them, but you know… better to use it and not need it than to forget it when I DO need it!).
Sloan activates next. She walks forward, casts “Refuge” on herself… and that’s it. She camps the rest. I know that she’s got to be out of the Killbox by the end of my next turn, but as it stands she’s only 1″ from the edge of the Killbox so she has plenty of options.
My Squire and Reinholdt follow.
Next, the Boomhowlers get super-tough (that’s 4+ Tough for those of you who are unfamiliar with the term) and run forward. I tried to spread them out so that next turn I could Assault most of them forward between the gaps in the ruins and Objective towards Nick’s army.
Both of my Stormcallers activate and move towards the left side of the table (away from the MHSF and towards the MHI… I figured they would be slightly safer and more useful on that side of the table).
Lastly, my Storm Lances and Katherine Laddermore run from west side of table to the middle. Basically, this was the opposite to the Stormcallers… I know Cygnar’s cavalry is designed to remove units exactly like the MHSF from the table, and I doubted my Avenger would be able to hold them off on its own (at least not for long… ARM19 is more resistant to the MHSF, but not by a lot).
Retribution Turn 1
Nick starts his turn with Garryth allocating 1 to his Chimera and none to the Phoenix. Must be nice to have Arcanists… sure, I have Arlan, but he’s a character and costs 2 points, unlike the Retribution’s equally awesome 1-point Arcanists. But ya can’t have everything!
His MHA activates and runs down the right side of the table. Speedy little daemon, she is…
The MHSF walk forward, spreading out a little but mostly cowering behind the right-side jack traps. The 1st shoots my Avenger and hits but inflicts no damage (dice-9, even against boosted dice, is pretty okay). His second hits and destroys the lightning pod (which I would’ve SWORN was out of range of his troops… turns out I’m very bad at judging 18″!). The 3rd hits a Boomhowler and wounds, but my Boomhowler Toughs (first Boomhowler Tough roll ever!). The 4th hits the same knocked-down Boomhowler, wounds, and kills. The last one in range of anything hits another Boomhowler but fails to wound.
That… went okay…
Next, the MHI run forward. One of them runs straight towards a ‘Howler but fails to engage… turns out even the speedy elves come up short occasionally. Who knew!?
Next, Nick activates his Houseguard Thane, who gives Desperate Pace to his Halberdiers and then doesn’t move.
The Halberdiers receive their “Shield Wall” Order and then walk up 8″ and Reform further forward another 3″. 11″ on Shield Wall… ridiculous. Cool, but ridiculous.
The Chimera activates and runs directly forward. It pauses momentarily to laugh at my Avenger “running” 8″.
The Arcanist activates, moves up a bit and gives the Phoenix a Focus.
Which the Phoenix promptly uses to run.
Next, Sylys wanders towards the middle of the table.
Lastly, Garryth activates, and arcs “Mirage” through the Phoenix onto the Infiltrators. With that, Nick is done!
Cygnar Turn 2
There are a few pre-turn considerations for this round. I quickly confirm that just about everything Nick has in his front lines are going to be within range of my guns this turn… the Stormwall and Avenger can both easily get range to targets with Fire Group active (great spell, that one), while the Assaulting Boomhowlers shouldn’t have any difficulty getting within 5″ (at least) of handfuls of Halberdiers, MHIs, and MHSF. The Storm Lances are out of the fight for another round, sadly, due to their position at the back of my lines near the middle of the table, but that’s okay… saving them for a later-game heavy punch isn’t a bad thing. The one fly in the ointment is Nick’s Assassin… it’s actually moved so far down the board that I think it’s slightly behind Sloan! And she does NOT have the stats to withstand a single Charge attack from those elven warriors… that things has gotta die. Problem is that while it IS within Range of Sloan (assuming she doesn’t move she gets to ignore Stealth), it is also currently out of LoS due to my Avenger having its fat butt right in the way. So I know I want to Feat, but I want to activate the Avenger before the Feat so I can shoot the Assassin, but I want to have the Avenger activate after the Feat to get the bonus… annoying!After a bit more stalling, Kara takes 1 from the Squire, upkeeps Refuge, and gives 2 to the Stormwall.
My Avenger goes first. It walks up its full 4″ and fires at a clump of Mage Hunters (out of range): it deviates to hit 2 but only kills 1. Sucky luck there, but the deviation could’ve gone much worse (or better… there were at least a few places that a 4″ AoE would’ve hit at least 4 MHSF!).
Next, Sloan activates and pops her Feat. She casts “Fire Group” so that she can get range on the Assassin (just out of 14″ from Sloan). She then shoots at the Assassin, hits, rolling dice damage needs a 5 to kill on 3d6, rolls a 4! NOOOOooooOOOOOoooOOOooo!
The Avenger takes an out of activation shot at a clump of Halberdiers: hits (boosted from the Feat), knocks down 4 and kills 1 on a direct hit. That’s not too shabby, I suppose…
Sloan then takes her Refuge move towards the ruins and out of the Killbox, and lastly casts “Deadeye” on Boomhowlers.
Because if 3d6 helps hit stuff… 4d6 hits LOTS of stuff!
Reinholdt activates and runs behind Sloan. And why didn’t I activate Reinholdt first to give Sloan a 2nd shot, you ask?
Because I’m an idiot, dear reader. Moving along.
The Boomhowlers Assault! My first ever Assault with Boomhowlers… I’m so excited I’m almost bouncing. 1 Assaults a MHSF, but sadly goes WAY out of CMD-range. Why was he out of CMD? Well, remember how I mentioned that I wanted to allow the Boomhowlers to be able to Assault through the ruins and the Objective? Yeah, that didn’t happen… the center group of Boomhowlers (including Greygore himself) got stuck behind the objective and couldn’t get far enough forward to do anything useful! Very annoying. The rest kill 3 Infiltrators, 2 Halberdiers, and a MHSF. So I can’t complain too much (no misses for those who got their shots off!). The one that went charing out of CMD passes his CMD-2 check. Oh, and they get super-tough again (which is good, since the one that forces CMD-checks wouldn’t have worked on the Fearless MHI and Halberdiers!).
Next, the Stormwall activates, walks up 5″ (slightly out of zone, curses), launches the pod behind an Infiltrator (kills it) but also out of the zone (whoops). It then drops the Covering Fire to protect the Avenger from the MHA (I hope) and the other one to stop a group of Halberdiers from moving forward. It’s around this point that I realize I won’t be able to get anything else in to contest the zone aside from the 3 Boomhowlers that are already in there… I hope their super-tough lives up to its reputation! The Stormwall’s first big shot goes into Phoenix, and boosting damage inflicts 9 (all taken on the shield). Kara takes her out of activation shot from the Feat, also at the Phoenix, hits, and inflicts 7 more damage (drops shield, light damage to the warjack itself). Not bad, not bad… and now I realize that I should’ve had the Stormwall looking at the Phoenix to get a second big gun shot, but since I forgot about the whole “Field of Fire” thing Colossi have, that didn’t happen. Instead, the second big gun shot from the Stormwall hits the Chimera, boosts damage and inflicts 11 on the light warjack (but doesn’t cripple anything).
Next, both my Stormcallers activate and zap 1 MHI each. Because Cygnar ain’t got time for no “Stealth”.
The Storm Lances run, and I decide to use 2 tp block the charge-lane between the MH Assassin and the Avenger, and also putting them in prime position to attack the MHSF next turn. Laddermore follows behind them.
Lastly, my little Squire runs up behind Sloan.
Retribution Turn 2
Nick allocate 3 to the Phoenix. Upkeep Mirage for free from Sylys and take the Mirage move to shuffle the MHIs around a little… none were engaged to start with (everything I charged successfully had already died), but it let them get better charge lanes set up for many of them. Neat spell.He starts his turn with the Arcanist giving “Concentrated Power” to Phoenix. Which I thought was weird… the Phoenix was at least 12-13″ away from the Stormwall, which is considerably out of his charge range… right? SPD6 plus 3 for charging plus 2 for Reach… Nick had to know I was out by at least an inch… right?
I asked my worthy opponent this very question… and he smiled and passed me the Magister card. Ah. Whip Snap. Neat ability, that… completely forget he had it! Huh. This… well, a fully boosted, full charge Phoenix smacking my Stormwall PROBABLY wouldn’t kill it… probably… hmmm.
But first! He had to clear out 1 Boomhowler blocking the charge lane between the Phoenix and the Stormwall, and then had to hit something with Whip Snap while still within 3″ of the Phoenix… it might not happen… maybe…
The Halberdiers get Shield Wall orders again, walk up and pop their Mini-Feat. That 1 Boomhowler needed to die… 4 attacks on him.
First hits… wounds… Toughs!
Second hits… wounds… Toughs!
Third hits… wounds… Toughs!
FOURTH hits… wounds… TOUGHS! WOO! Nick is angry enough to chew glass, but I’m grinning like an idiot.
There are 2 more attacks that land on the out-of-Formation Boomhowler: second attack kills. But that’s okay!
In frustration, Nick has the MHIs Charge: 4 succeed (including Eiryss3), 2 run behind my lines to engage a Boomhowler and a Stormcaller. Eiryss hits both times (Boomhowler Toughs both times, more cursing and stomping-of-feet from my worthy opponent), but then the other Infiltrators kill (successfully) 2 Boomhowlers and then hit the objective twice for no damage.
Okay, back to the central zone… the Magister activates, tries to Whip-snap the Boomhowler blocking the charge lane: he’s hitting on anything but Snake Eyes since the Boomhowler is knocked down… and Nick rolls Snake Eyes! Woo! Well, that ends Nick’s hope to send his Phoenix careening into my Stormwall once and for all. Still, he just has to kill that knocked down Boomhowler and 1 other in the zone to be able to contest and/or dominate it… which would be a poor position to be in on my side.
Towards that end, the Chimera activates, moves up, and takes 2 melee attacks against the same Boomhowler. First swing auto-hits and wounds… and is Toughed! Nice… second attack auto-hits and wounds… and is ALSO Toughed! 6 in a row, baby! Nice, very nice…
The Houseguard Thane moves up a bit and shoots that same Boomhowler: he hits and wounds. And… Toughs! We’re at 7 now.
The MHSF activate and move up into the zone. The first shoots that same Boomhowler… hits, but then fails to wound! Second shoots that same Boomhowler… hits, wounds… Toughs again (EIGHT!). It’s hard not to grin like an idiot… I can’t remember at this point if Nick acknowledges the futility of trying to kill that Boomhowler, or if he ran out of MHSF that had him in their front arcs. Either way, the other MHSFs kill 1 Storm Lance and fail to wound the other Boomhowler in the zone.
The MHA charges a Lance, hits, and needing a 9 to wound (on 4d6) rolls an 8. Almost (but not quite) as bad as rolling 4 points of damage on 3d6 to kill a 5 wound model, I would say…
Garryth activates and moves into the zone. In an act of 2 parts frustration to 1 part tactics, his first shot hits the knocked down Boomhowler… wounds… and the noble, lucky Boomhowler doesn’t Tough.
Hey, 8 times… certainly can’t complain!
Second shot at the other Boomhowler in the zone hits, and needs a 5 to kill… rolls a 4 for damage. So no Control Points. He does, however, remember to pop his Feat.
Lastly, Sylys walks up a little.
Cygnar Turn 3
I quickly measure the distance from Sloan to the edge of the zone (4″). Garryth is inside the zone, which means he’s about 12″ from Sloan on the other side of that zone… which puts him JUST inside 16″. Perfect!
Now, I have a history of failing “sure thing” assassination attempts, so I wasn’t going to over commit. But there’s only 1 model blocking LoS to Garryth… a Halberdier. If I can kill him without risking Sloan or the game, I’ll take the shot… otherwise, we continue to attrition the snot out of the pointy-ears.So! I take 1 Focus from Squire, upkeep Refuge, and camp the rest.
This time I remember to use Reinholdt FIRST! He activates and gives Sloan a 2nd shot.
My Avenger activates. He walks into the zone and shoots only Halberdier blocking LoS to Garryth. In my brain, this is a good plan… even if I don’t kill him, I can knock him down! Perfect! Of course, I forget that I need to beat DEF13 with a RAT4… So I need a 9 to hit. I roll a 10! Woo! The shot knocks down 4 Halberdiers, 2 MHSF, and the Chimera. Kills the LoS blocking Halberdier and both MHSF, but inflicts no other damage.
But that’s enough. Sloan activates. She casts “Fire Group” and shoots Garryth (who is JUST in range). Boost to hit, hits, boost damage, roll damage (dice – 4), and inflict 8 wounds. That takes him down to 1/2 health… the second shot, boost to hit, hits, boost damage, and bury the Retribution assassin.
Victory to Cygnar!
I’m not POSITIVE I deserved that win… but I’ll take it anyway! Nick over extended Garryth, but since this is only the 2nd time he’s ever used him, that’s not too surprising. It’s hard to keep warcasters with good ranged guns really safe… the temptation is always to have them just a little bit too far forward (I speak from years of Caine-experience on this!). Other than that, he played a solid game and had a good, interesting plan to get that charge off on my Stormwall… the true MVPs of this match were the Boomhowlers. That one… he’s getting a little painted roman numerial VIII on his arm… that was awesome.
Thanks for reading!