Thursday, 25 April 2013

Relic - Magnetic bases

Relic is a fun, but silly game. If you have played Talisman, it's that, IN SPACE!!!!!!!!!!

Well, grimdark 40k space anyway.

It's not a game that rewards amazing strategy or tactical foresight. It's a roll and move, draw cards, have fun and watch the madness game.

It does have some very nice character busts I want to paint, unfortunately the pegs for the busts are unbelievably tight and the process of putting them in and taking them out would eventually damage the paint.

So i decided to magnetise the bases.

It's a pretty simple process. Get some rare earth magnets, some green stuff, pack the sockets on the busts, lop the top off the pegs and Viola! it's done!

Just make sure the magnets are pointing the right way or you will feel like a complete idiot.

These busts are really pretty and im looking forward to painting them. They have a date with the spray can later today.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

How to "come 5th" at Warmachine - The final day of NZ nationals

Day three - eNemo laughs at your collosals!

I decided after day two that I had no show of winning the tournament (not that that had figured in to my calculations, but on day one I was looking pretty good), so I decided to play eNemo in both games this day, regardless of what my opponents list was. It turned out to be an awesome decision and eNemo turned out to be a blast to play with.

5 warjacks, with a potential 23 focus to spend on his feat turn, how can you not like this.

Game eight vs Magnus the traitor with Mercs (Scott A)

Artists impression of Scott at his old job
Scott is a very good Warmachine player (ranked 3rd in NZ) and a damm fine bloke too. He could be described as a big square jawed ex-copper..... cause that's what is.

Anyway, when I ran into Scott in the morning he was in bad shape. Two things had happened to him in this tournament.

One, his dice rolls were so bad on day two that he threw them away and bought new ones.

Two, he had commiserated his bad day two by having a few too many brews the night before. A couple a laughs and the game is under way.

Scott had the first turn and ran his force forward. Nyss hunters on the left flank, Galleon in centre, Magnus and jacks to the right. I decided to do something midnumbingly ballsy to see if it worked.

On my first turn eNemo advanced forward as far as he could and shot Galleon. he was standing, uncovered on a hill 10 inches away from Galleon, but critically he was in the left arc. I fired my tractor beam effect that locked Galleon in place and then tried to cover Nemo with jacks to prevent the eventual counter attack.

The Warmachine gods clearly did not like Scott this day as absolutely nothing went his way, and I mean nothing.

On his turn everything missed or did minimal damage asides from Galleon impaling the Minuteman that hadnt got out of his left flank. The Nyss hunters completely missed my trencher commandos in melee. Not one hit on 6+ with 6 or 7 attempts (some Nyss got grenaded earlier). The nomad couldnt kill my Ironcad and the Renegades wiffed with their rockets. 

It was well sad.

In my turn I fluffed about trying to be clever before realising an assassination was on the cards. Under Nemos feat he scratched the Nomad before giving up and letting the Ironclad kill it. Magnus was behind a cloud effect and i moved my charger into the cloud to shoot him. Then my 2nd ironclad charged the renegade and earthquaked it, nemo and gorman down. (yep, realised i should have done that first). Minuteman then flak fielded Gorman to death.

Magnus was knocked down and on about 3 or 4 boxes, one good hit and he was smoked. I had one jack left and it was the stormclad and I was out of charge range. Then i remembered the damm thing has a short range gun. Advanced and kill Magnus. 

Total causalities were one Trencher Commando who died on my turn to a free strike to free up the Stormclad's move. 
The finale - Sorry about the blurry shot but you can see magnus surrounded by Warjacks just to the right of galleon
I would bet on Scott to win nine times out of ten in a match up with me. He's very very good, but it doesn't matter how good you are when absolutely nothing works out for you. 

Took the loss like a champ, always got time to play against Scott as its always fun.

Result - Magnus get pack mauled by warjacks Score 2-2 for this competition (4-3 overall)

Game Nine vs Kraye and Cygnar (Richard T)

The battle for Cygnar supremacy came down to an unlikely matchup. Super horseman Kraye vs Electro-nutcase-Geriatric eNemo!

I play and talk to Richard a fair bit as he's one of the other Cygnar players in Wellington. We are one spot apart on Rankings HQ and tend to finish in similar positions in tournaments, so it seemed only fair that we would throw down to determine who was the CHAMPION CYGNAR PLAYER!!!!!!!

Seriously though, neither Richard or I think we are particularly good at this game and were both surprised to see the other had done so well at the weekend. 

I image a lot of Cygnar vs Cygnar games are dull affairs with each side staying just on the edge of shooting threat range and exchanging defender/gun mage/long gunner fire.

This was nothing like that, it was a swinging game of move and counter move with one really annoying bit of forest to jump around.

The game settled down into an attritional affair, with me trying to slow down the Stormclad by feeding him Ironclads, and Richard trying to lock down an Assassination run on Nemo.

In the end, attrition went my way with some good tactical strikes. The turn below shows the decisive round.

The stormcaller on the left kept disrupting the hunter by the objective. From here on in, that jack never gained focus, which caused Richard no end of annoyance. Nemo energized the charger left around the forest, stormclad forwards and the barely functional ironclad into the rubble in-front of Richards Stormclad.

The charger boosted two shots into the Journeyman caster, hitting with the 2nd and blowing him away. This dropped arcane shield from Stormwall. My Stormclad, with +2 strength now engaged the 19 armour Stormwall. 4 hits later and one entire side was wrecked. oh, and lightning had murdered all the support crews in b2b with Stormwall.

Richard then rolled the dice on an assassination run with Kraye and missed his shots. It wasn't a high percentage run and I think Richard had psyched himself out a little. He could have used the focus to absolutely destroy my Stormclad with his, but went for the harder quick win. One more turn of attrition and I would have been reduced to nemo and the charger.
Stormclad eyes up Stormwall - you ain't so tough

Result - Richard concedes and does not play the final turn  Score 3-2 for this competition (5-3 overall)


A good time had by all.... well by most.... one of my friends had a pretty dire weekend and played some games that did not sound remotely fun. He was pretty unimpressed with the attitude of some of the players, and from what was said, i completely understand why. I'm glad I didn't play them as the vast majority of my games were good times. (Except round 3 where I brain farted vs Mike T and probably made that round not much fun at all).

Thanks again to Chris O (Palerel) for doing the mostly thankless task of geek wrangling, and to Mike for driving me all three days to the tourney!

So good enough for 5th place apparently! Go me! That's like a pewter medal or something? Tin? Aluminium?

Can I make my own medal out of a coke can?

Friday, 12 April 2013

Convergence - Battlegroup box and book!

New stuff coming from PP, It's only the box cover and the model boxes for the heavy Vectors, but I must admit, this looks pretty damm cool.

Quite excited to see the contents of the Cyriss book, they could be a good option for a 2nd faction for me.

These models just look so damm cool, and i've had a soft-spot for this style of design ever since "City of heroes" and the Clockwork faction from that game.  

Thursday, 11 April 2013

How to "win" at Warmachine? The NZ Nationals Day Two

Day Two - The day of fail

So when we left our intrepid adventurer he had somehow managed to beat three really good players and burgle his way into the top tier for days two and three.

personally, I think the reason I made it to day two was that my eCaine list is very good against certain match-ups, and I got to play those match-ups (and not fail)

Round Five vs eSorcha and Khador (Rick T)

Turtle vs Death star...... that doesn't sound fair at all. 

This was a very close game and by far the longest game I played in the tournament. Rick needs to tighten up his time management skills a smidge, as he was deathclocked in one game and came perilously close to be clocked against me.

My list was a little wacky but loads of fun. pHaley sitting inside her bubble with a defender and a stormstrider, with Precursor Knights as the counter punch unit. Out in front of the bubble ranges a hunter, a grenadier and some chain guns. For 2 points the humble chain gun is an annoyance that is very difficult to remove with shooting, and on occasion, does a bucket load of damage.

The grenadier had a bit of a blinder in this game, accounting for an awful lot of the Death Star with its incredibly accurate blast weapons. Temp bubble + Trencher Gunner + Standing still gives the Grenadier effectively rat 12??? and 3 shots at pow 12 (with focus for boosts from haley) and you have a pretty cheap, very effectively little package.

I adopted my standard anti-collosal tactic is this game...... ignore the big stupid thing and shoot the caster instead.

Lordy that worked well here, Sorcha ran forward, used her feat, wiffed most of her armies attacks asides from one good shot on the Storm Strider (which blew it up in one shot..... ouch). Then, stuff happened, and not good stuff.....

Die you frigid cow DIE!

You see this pic... this is the second round of shooting I had against Sorcha. You see on turn one I hit her with everything, including the kitchen sink under blitz. Shot after shot smacked into her and did a whopping X-1 damage (X being her life total).

Yep, 1 life left and then the turn above. Rick, at this point is on 4 minutes time left.

After going for Glory, Haley got collosal fist to face. 
I ask myself the question, do I go for the kill shot? Or do I run Haley away, camp focus and be a giant douche and let Rick time himself out.

Kill shot ordered! One damage needed, 5 rolls on 3 dice needing one 12 to hit.......

Miss, miss, reroll, miss, miss.  GODDAMIT TO HELL!!!!!!!!!

Next round Conquest applies fist to face, Rick ends with 90 secs on the clock.

Result: Haley gets big fist to face, Rick wins : Score 0-1 for this comp (3-2 overall)

Round Six Vs. The Coven and Cryx (Sean Lincoln)

So apparently the coven suck....... Lies I tell you, freaking lies.

What an amazing "caster" the coven is, something truly unique in the game. Sure, they aren't "blow you pants of OMFG awesome" like some top tier casters, but they allow for some very interesting timing rules as they can split their casting across multiple phases of one turn.

Sean used this to great effect one turn by activating one witch, casting a spell that granted ghostly to a  unit, charging with them, then activating the 2nd witch and casting the spell on another unit. Very clever, and very effective.

This game was attrition, pure and simple. Turn by turn, Sean and I dismantled each others forces until very little was left. The picture below shows all the models left in the battle on the last turn (asides from the coven, who were hiding far far away). Sean punched through with his barely alive arc node to deliver the final kill blow to haley, who had run out of focus trying to boost attacks to kill said arc-node.

Arc node..... why wont you die!

Sean and I both learned a lot from this game. Here are some of the key lessons.

  • Terrain does not stop Cryx from doing anything ever. Ghostly units move through buildings....
  • Don't forget chain guns, under temporal barrier they are effectively Rat 10 with 4-6 shots. 
  • Pistol Wraiths suck.... shoot them in the face early and often. 
  • However, having your pistol wraith shoot the Stormstrider just powers it up, it wasn't moving anywhere anyway and has 360 degree fire. Boosted striders are scary scary things.
  • Explodey thralls make expensive units of precursors very very sad. 
  • Haley has chain lightning, and always rolls a 6 for the number of jumps it makes. Satyxis do not enjoy this. 
  • Always keep some focus on Haley so she can't be spelled to death. 

Result: Haley gets spell to face, Sean wins : Score 0-2 for this competition (3-3 overall)

Round three - Bye (Bonus pics)

Having lost both games I drew the bye round (we had a player go home sick, he came back for Day three though). I was quite tired and sore (I had been having tooth ache all weekend, three days after the tourney I got 3 wisdom teeth out... FUN!).

I used the time to take pics of the other players and stuff going on.

Oh yeah, I lsot every game i played this day..... so how to win at warmachine is still a long way away.

Chris P (legion) vs Sean (with venethrax this time)

Dans Awesome Hyperion vs one of the many Cygnar armies (not sure who's)

Trolls vs Mercs (M.White)  Poor Mr White had a horrid tournament

Gators vs Mercs
Another Cygnar player vs Petes Circle 
Richards Cygnar vs Matts Circle
Caseys gators vs Skorne (Chris Ford?)
Skorne vs  Menoth (Snook?)
More Cygnar vs Toms Khador

Theocratic crisis as Pope Chong takes on Cardinal Ginge 
More freaking Cygnar (Thomas C) vs Robs Legion


Why 40k sucks in one pic. Spam list, not painted...... this was the 40k tourney in a nutshell. 

Saturday, 6 April 2013

How to lose at Warmachine - Nationals edition (Day one)

Well, this is going to be less of a "how to lose" session than normal, as I actually won more games than I lost.

Against my expectations, and probably that of a few others, I played pretty darned well and did pretty darned well. There was only one game where I thought "I have no freaking clue what i'm doing.... and in that game i was thoroughly roflstomped into the ground in no time flat".

Asides from that one horrid round, I thought I played competitively, and had a genuine chance at winning all the games I played.... Feeling groovy about the whole experience.

First up, a shout out to our local PG Chris O (Palarel) for a well run event. He had to wrangle 26 gamers, answer rules questions, do the draw and demo games to interested parties. Chris was sharp all weekend, so my thanks to him.

If I have a gripe at all, its about the venues ONE TOILET, WITH NO LOO PAPER! Yeah..... not the best plan when you have over 100 gamers in one building. I'd go as far to say it was "pants on head retarded".


Fly my pretties! 

So just a reminder, day one was pools of 6 player, top 3 went on to the big boys league, bottom 3 played for the wooden spoon. Strangely enough, this turned out to be a day of surprises and many people picked to get through to the top tables crashed and burned.

Honestly, it was nice to see the upsets happen and I think it's good for the hobby having different people winning.

To view my lists, see here.

Round one vs. Vayl2 and the Legion of Everblight (Rob VDW)

A brief bit of history. I suck against hordes factions most of the time. For the longest time I tried playing them the same way I would a Warmachine Faction: I would focus on creating an attack vector on the caster and try to blow his head off.

Time and again this didn't work vs. Hordes with their transfers, so I went back to the drawing board.

The answer: kill the beasts first, then assassinate the caster. With this in mind my eCaine list was born.

The plan was simple, attrition the enemy army with Caine and the gun mages, hold a zone with the Centurion and wait for an opening.

The key was the use of an early feat with Pendrakes creature targeting buff. In my second turn Caine shot down one heavy beast and virtually crippled a 2nd. This blunted Robs initial thrust and he never recovered.
Caine was a Warbeast slaying machine, accounting for 3 heavies and about 4 lights (Spawning pool was simply generating army points for Caine at the end)

This list was pretty much designed to kill legion, and it did a fantastic job of it (legion have been my nemesis). 

See that pile of legion on the right..... yeah... they're all dead...... 
This was probably Rob's worst game of the weekend. He is an exceedingly good player but this is a real example of how one list can be a perfect counter to another.

Result: Vayl runs away from Caine and we win on control points 6-0. Rob is left with Vayl, a shepard and a spawned Harrier....OUCH!  (Score so far 1-0)

Round two - Morvanna2 and the Circle of Orboros (Pete W)

Pete ended up winning the whole tournament, and is another excellent player. Unfortunately for him, I turned up with possibly Morvanna2's worst match up and it was still a very very close game.

Morvanna2 revolves around an endless stream of hurting and healing in order to power a lot of her awesome buffs.
Wolves to the left of me, Tharn to the right, Here I am, Stuck in the middle with you!

eCaine's feat on turn two destroyed Petes wolf men squad and "removed them from game". This was a big deal as it meant Morvanna couldn't bring them back with her feat. Without that, I seriously think Pete would have won this game comfortably.

I have a new respect for Tharn javelin chuckers with Prey, they ate my high defence infantry for breakfast. In the end the Tharn accounted for about 75% of my army with their accurate multiple attacks. Nasty stuff.
The picture below shows the finale. Caines def 20 vs Ranged and Magic attacks proving too hard to hit, and Morvanna eventually falling to the 5th pow 12 shot on Caine's activation.

All that remains at the end of the battle!

Any other match-up and I think Pete would have had my number, but the eCaine "HORDESLAYER" list comes up trumps again.

Result: Caine gets a non-feat assassination (Score so far 2-0)

Round Three - Gorten and Mercs (Mike T)

This was a total roflstomping on Mike’s part.

Have you ever played a game where as soon as you set up you go "wow, what the heck am I doing?"

Mikes amazing army, note, this is not from the game we played!

That was this game for me, the list simply didn't do anything and Mike played perfectly in the face of my ineptitude. He may only have killed 2 sword knights, but he won by 5 CP to Zero in round 3.

YEP, note to self. Stormwall needs support, also, against Gorten at least try to put it near an objective.... this will stop him pushing your entire army off the objectives during his feat turn.

Result: Gorten pushes my army off the objectives and has a snack, Mike wins!  (Score so far 2-1)

Round Four - Rask and the Blindwater Covenant (Casey)

Three Gatormen posse at 35 points, Yikes!

I've never asked why people call Casey the Italian Spiderman, but they do. It’s a unique nickname and you have to respect someone called the Italian Spiderman. You also have to respect that he is a sharp player who consistently places high in the NZ tournament scene.

We played once before, in a game that I thought I played out of my skin in (even though I lost). I was looking forward to the rematch and chose my HORDES REPELLANT list for 2 reasons.

Reason One!  I had won both games with it against good players

Reason Two! The previous game proved to me that my Stormwall list was not fun to play.

This game played remarkably like the game against Pete. There was some manoeuvring, the enemy Warlock tried to stay away from Caine, and Caine accounted for half the enemy army by himself.  This time however, the Centurion got to prove its value by taking out the Swamp horror (a critter very resilient to shooting) with a good solid spear to the face.

Caine is free, Rask isnt protected enough and rangers with the assist. 
In a repeat of the game vs. Pete the attrition game wore Casey down to the point where he had to bring his caster forward to help turn the tide of the battle, or at least to score some point.

Result:  Rask comes forward to try and score and cripple the Centurion, Caine wiggles free and shoot him down.  (Score so far 3-1)

Conclusion of Day One

So I ended up in the top pool, going 3-1 on the day. Pretty pleased with this and I’ve knocked over three of the better players in the tournament. Really enjoyed playing epic Caine, and still cannot win a game with Stormwall. 

eCaine worked really well, using his feat early to get an attrition edge and using caine himself as a deterrent to keep the enemy caster back was great. Rangers were gold with him, as were gun mages, and the Centurion proved to be a tough rock to move. Really looking forward to running him again!

Part two, coming soon!

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