Monday, June 2, 2014

Warmachine Batrep #6: Circle Baldur1 vs. Cryx, Mercs, and Skorne 25 points - Grow League Week 3 (with pictures!!)

Howdy folks! Today I've got Week 3 of my Journeyman Grow League for you! This week we went up to 25 points, though we are still not allowed to change our original battle box contents. I've been using Baldur1,  whose battleforce has two models: Wold Guardian and Wold Warden.

Week 2 allowed me to add a set of Shifting Stones + UA.

Week 3 (this week) I've added something I've really been excited to try out: Bloodtrackers + Nuala. Let's see how good they are/aren't after the break :)

Baldur1 is a fun caster, though I've learned that Purification is really a tough thing for him to deal with. It wouldn't be as much of an issue if he wasn't such a low Fury caster (yes, I'm a spoiled Circle player and consider 6 to be "low"), but because he's forced to be so close to the action due to his spell effects, Purification can really mess with him. Not only can it take away his "Solid Ground" spell (which is really his bread and butter if you ask me), it also wipes away Stone Skin (his "other" bread and butter spell) along with   any forests, Animi the beasts are using (which are all generally important), and ... yeah. You get the picture. Purification can negate any of his formidable defenses he provides to his army in one fell swoop.

But, I'm stuck with him in this format. I was hoping not to get any games in with Kreoss1 or Doomshaper1 this round, because next round I can take a different caster, which will likely be Baldur2, who isn't screwed nearly as bad by Purification. :)

Please note that this isn't to say that Baldur1 sucks - he's pretty good if the enemy doesn't have Purification. I would definitely take him to a tournament. I just hate being stuck with only him in a "Take All Comers" setup. At least, the competitive side of me hates it. I need to learn to win regardless of my matchup though. That's what being a competitive player is all about, right? heh.

Let's get on to the games now!

Game 1: Circle Baldur1 vs. Cryx Gaspy1

Baldur1 List:

-Wold Guardian
-Wold Warden

Shifting Stones
Tharn Bloodtrackers
-Nuala the Huntress

Gaspy1 List:


Withershadow Combine

Machine Wraith
Pistol Wraith
Pistol Wraith
Satyxis Raider Captain

The Mission:

We played with two flags on opposing sides of the board. You could dominate your own flag for 1 CP, hold the opponent's flag for 1 CP, for dominate your opponent's flag for 2 CP. This was the same scenario in all three games I played.

*We rolled off to see who went first, and I won, giving him first turn. Probably just an old 40k habit I need to break, heh. My reasoning was that at least then I wouldn't have to worry about him using his Arc Nodes to mess with me on his own Turn 1.

Pre-game thoughts:

I wasn't sure exactly what to do. I knew that the Pistol Wraiths were going to be able to mess with my beasts, so I wanted to put them at risk should they decide to shoot them. Thing is, I knew they could make me forfeit my move or action, and I really needed my big guys to perform. I put the Warden on the side closest to them so that if he was stopped, he could at least cast Earth Spikes and kill the damn thing.

Otherwise, I just thought I'd play it in stride. I wanted to remove those Arc Nodes, so I chose one of them as Prey, knowing they'd be closest to my lines.


Fun when most of your army is advance deploy :)
Cryx Turn 1:

He moved forward. Pistol Wraiths are hanging out in some ruins to the right, which I thought might have been a small mistake - I thought that one on either side would help Craig's cause more, since then he could conceivably shut down both of my heavies in the same turn. I wasn't about to complain though.

He's already threatening both objectives. Cryx are so quick :)

Circle Turn 1:

I ran the Bloodtrackers forward, put Flesh of Clay on the Guardian and charged, moved the Warden up and put a forest on him, and then put up Solid Ground with Baldur, along with a random forest in the middle to protect Nuala. I also put Stone Skin on the Guardian, which was a mistake. The Bloodtrackers were more likely to use the +2 STR, and Gaspy's feat would have been much less scary if they had an extra 2 ARM (every model in his control takes a STR 5 hit).

It is what it is though.

What can Craig do to crack my (obviously) perfect defenses? /sarcasm
Cryx Turn 2:

He Craig moved his guys up, and drew a bead on some of my Bloodtrackers. Between arcing and shooting, then popping his feat, Craig was able to kill 7 Bloodtrackers. I had saved Nuala from everything but his feat, and Craig needed an 11 or 12 to kill her (on 2 dice), BUT HE DID, and she died before I could use her.

Looking back, they didn't need to be so close to Craig's lines. I was too aggressive, and paid the price for my lack of vision :)

OH YEAH, then the Bloodtrackers failed their panic test and started fleeing. Because I needed that to happen :-p
Circle Turn 2:

I was in a bad position. Craig had essentially taken my Bloodtrackers away from me for no real cost, and I had yet to do any damage to him. I needed that to change ASAP.

Warden moved up and used Earth Spikes on a Pistol Wraith, killing it.
Stones teleported my Guardian into B2B with the Ripjaw, and the Watcher shot and killed the Satyxis Raider Captain.
Guardian killed Ripjaw in two hits, then cast Flesh of Clay.
Bloodtrackers rallied, but I ran them backwards to keep them from being targeted further.
Baldur upkept Solid Ground, then cast Stone Skin on the Guardian *after* the Guardian had killed the Ripjaw) then put a forest up in front of himself to hide from the Leviathan.

I still need to get better at my order of activations.

I killed a Pistol Wraith, Satyxis Captain, and Arc Node. Not enough damage, but a little at least :)
Cryx Turn 3:

Craig decided to try and end my Guardian with the Stalker, so he put Scything Touch on the Stalker, and used Pupper Master on the Nightwretch.

Nightwretch did a ridiculous amount of damage to the Warden, rolling 6,6,5 for his boosted damage roll. Haha, Puppermaster worked!

Pistol Wraith did minimal damage to the Warden but hit all three times, forcing him to forfeit either movement or action.

Leviathan charged the Guardian (I should have remembered to pop my feat, doh!) and did some damage, but not enough to kill him.

This was the first time my Guardian lived after something charged it, haha!

He didn't do much damage to me this turn, but my Heavies are hurting pretty badly. What will become of me?
Circle Turn 3:

Due to poor placement, my Bloodtrackers wouldn't be in range to do anything this turn. Need to get better at that!

Baldur put Stone Skin on the Guardian, and put a forest in front of himself to protect vs. Withershadow Combine.

Guardian punched the Stalker and... well, he tried to punch him. He needed a "6" to hit, but only managed a single hit, despite 5 attempts. He therefore did very little damage to the Jack :-/

Warden activated, boosted to hit with Earth Spikes vs. the Pistol Wraith, and killed him.

That was pretty much it. The Stones warped around a little, and the Druid missed with his AOE on the Nightwretch (needed a "9" to hit, so no real surprise).

Not nearly enough damage done this turn. Kind of unlucky -  but what's a man to do?
Cryx Turn 4:

Craig killed my nearly-dead Guardian easily. Then, he shot and did a ridiculous amount of damage to my Warden with Asphixious, who expended all of his Focus on the final shot through his Arc Node.

I was in a world of hurt - both heavies dead, and only a couple of my own models could actually do damage.

Yet, there was still hope.

Poor old Baldur... only one chance to win now.
Circle Turn 4:

I had no choice but to go for the assassination. It all hinged on me getting a Crit Knockdown on Asphyxious with Earth Spikes from Baldur.

Baldur started and cut himself for 2 to get back to 6 Fury. Then, he moved forward and cast Earth Spikes on Asphyxious. If I got a Crit, it would knock him down.

I rolled and...


Did some damage too, but decided not to boost this time.

Instead, Baldur then cast Stone Skin on the Bloodtrackers.

Bloodtrackers moved up and, only needing 3's to hit the knocked down Asphyxious, proceeded to feather him with arrows. I didn't even need all 4 of them to kill him.

Bloodtrackers finally make their presence felt!

Results: Win for Circle Orboros via desperate assassination!!

Post-game thoughts:

Well, I could have played much better. I thought I did passably well at the end, but wow - the Guardian failed SO HARD against that Leviathan. Needing 6's, I should have hit at least 3 times, doing Dice +1 damage. Ah well, that's just how it goes, I suppose. If he could be knocked down, I'd have boosted my first attempt to hit just to knock him down to auto-hit him.

At any rate, the Bloodtrackers were too far up, I didn't put the right spells on the right units, and I forgot to pop my feat the whole game! Lots of things to improve on next game, but hey - a win is a win!

Game 2: Circle Baldur1 vs.  Mercs' Bart!

Baldur1 List:

-Wold Guardian
-Wold Warden

Shifting Stones
Tharn Bloodtrackers
-Nuala the Huntress


Buccaneer (not in battlegroup due to Jack Marshalling something or other?)

Arcane Tempest Gun Mages

Gunmage Captain Adept
Gorman di Wolfe
Dougal McNaile

**I won the roll to go first, but instead decided to pick the table side I wanted - my own objective was in a forest, which would be nice for Baldur to hang out in :)

Pre-game thoughts:

Josh is the local Press Ganger, and this would be the first time we played. I had never played against Mercs, and it was interesting to see that he took the Gun Mages as well - I would get some experience against Cygnar units too, haha!

I had looked at the cards, and knew that Bart's feat was good, but not really against Baldur1, since nobody can be knocked down and Bart doesn't have Purification.

So, I just wanted to minimize the damage that the Gun Mages could do, while attempting to score on my objective. It didn't seem like any of his models would do a lot of damage to my own, and most of them were pretty slow. I figured if I could kill a few of Josh's forward models, it would force him to move in with his more shooty models, where I could deal with them more reasonably.

That was the plan at least, heh.

His Deployment:

Mercs Turn 1:

Josh moved everyone up, and made sure to keep his Gun Mages behind a wall, making them DEF 19. lol

Circle Turn 1:

I moved forward, less aggressively this turn. I wanted to make sure that all the Bloodtrackers were within Baldur's bubble of no-blast damage.

Baldur gave Stone Skin to the Warden, and cast Solid Ground (would upkeep the rest of the game, FYI). Everyone made all sorts of silly forests everywhere.

Oh yeah, Bloodtrackers chose the Buccaneer as Prey.

Mercs Turn 2:

I really wasn't prepared for the ridiculous range on the Gun Mages, or for their crazy accuracy, or for Dougal's mini-feat making it even longer. Haha, I honestly thought that the Bloodtrackers would be safe. Silly me :)

He moved forward and shot at some Bloodtrackers, needing 7's to hit most of them due to his aiming bonus. Luckily for me, Josh only managed to kill 3 of the Bloodtrackers. Otherwise, he didn't do much damage, as most of my stuff was stealthed and his AOEs scattered off me, causing zero blast damage.

Bart cast "Batten down the Hatches" this turn, and most of his other turns.

His Buccaneer decided to play coy this turn, since the Bloodtrackers would probably kill him if he went farther up.
Circle Turn 2:

I wasn't the happiest that his Gun Mages could ignore stealth - I had read the cards, but not thoroughly enough, apparently. I needed to keep the Bloodtrackers away from them.

First, I had the Warden cast Earth Spikes on his Freebooter, and boosted damage, doing some.

The Stones shifted around, but the Druid was able to hit the Freebooter and did some damage as well.

Baldur activated and cast Stone Skin on the Bloodtrackers, putting up a few forests as well. Then, he popped his feat.

Guardian cast Flesh of Clay and walked into the Stones' Triangle.

Bloodtrackers moved up and some of them were able to do a few points of damage to the Freebooter. I don't believe I knocked out any systems, but I did manage to hurt the poor bastard some.

I was hoping that forest on his objective would save me from some of the shooting. It was also this game that I realized that Baldur's feat gave me cover, not concealment. Huge huge upgrade. I actually think Josh was the one who pointed it out. Helpful fellow, haha0 :)
Mercs Turn 3:

His Freebooter moved up some to threaten my stuff, and the Gun Mages came out from their rock wall to shoot me some.

He managed to kill a Bloodtracker or two, but the biggest thing Josh accomplished was that he managed to kill the Shifting Stones UA. Don't remember how he accomplished this, but he did and it gave me sads :-/

I believe this was the turn that Bart popped his feat.

Gorman also threw some Black Oil on a Bloodtracker and the Guardian. Yikes. I would need to kill him next turn if at all possible.

Yikes - now the Stones were out of their command bubble and wouldn't be able to shift any of my guys. I need to protect that UA more. Stealth doesn't work against some armies - I need to learn which ones haha :)

Circle Turn 3:

I really didn't have a whole lot I could do - Josh was playing coy with his Buccaneer, but I knew I needed to keep hurting the Freebooter. So,

Stones warped into coherency.

Warden walked up and tried to use Earth Spikes to finish Gorman off, but even with a boosted roll to hit, failed to hit. Doh!

Bloodtrackers (with Stone Skin on) decided to try hurting the Freebooter, and did some more damage. Then they used Reform and one of them walked into combat with him.

Baldur cast a forest on himself and Forest Walked into B2B with his Objective.

Guardian cast Flesh of Clay and stood there.

I scored 1 CP. Score: 1-0, Advantage Circle.

Well, I'm ahead so far on the objective points. Still a long ways to go, however.
Mercs Turn 4:

Josh allocated 3 CP to the Freebooter, then walked up with Bart and used his spray to get rid of the Bloodtracker. The spray hit the Freebooter, who then took more damage than was altogether reasonable and took out his Cortex, getting rid of the focus allocated. Big deal for me! He also managed to kill the Bloodtracker, but the damage was done.

Instead, the Freebooter walked toward my objective, contesting it.

Gorman backed up a little and threw some oil on the Warden.

Buccaneer charged the Guardian, but didn't do much to it.

Going reasonably well for me right now - I need to kill the Buccaneer and Freebooter next turn though. Also, Gorman.

Circle Turn 4:

First, the Guardian charged the Buccaneer (who was 2" away) and killed him in 3 hits (boosted one, knocked him down because he wasn't in the battlegroup, then hit him with 2 more).

Bloodtrackers cycled Prey to the Freebooter, then activated and killed it. They then cycled prey to Gorman, but missed two shots (didn't need much to hit).

Warden shuffled back into the Stone's radius, forfeiting his action but casting his Animus.

I scored another point. Score: 2-0, advantage Circle.

Who can get into contesting range of my objective?

Mercs Turn 5:

Josh ran Reinholt up to contest the objective.

Dougal ran up and couldn't quite kill the Bloodtracker he was shooting at.

Gun Mages rolled a lot of really high damage results on my Guardian, but he was still over half alive. This was impressive (the damage results) because he was using the POW 10 shots to push the Guardian backwards and out of contesting range of his own objective. POW 10 vs. ARM 20 means Josh got several 11's and 12's for damage. Of course, when his big guy decided to shoot him, he did no damage. Go figure, lol.

Bart moved over and scored on his own objective.

Score: 2-1, Advantage Circle.

Oh yeah, Gorman made sure to put some oil on my Guardian.
Circle Turn 5:

Bloodtrackers shot Gorman down, finally, and cycled Prey to Reinholt. They killed Reinholt and shifted Prey to Bart. Then they reformed and engaged Dougal to keep him from contesting my objective.

Stones warped the Warden forward into 4" range of his objective.

Guardian cast Flesh of Clay and walked forward 4" to contest his objective.

Warden cast Earth Spikes on Bart, doing some damage.

I scored on my objective.

Score: 3-1, advantage Circle

What does he have left to contest my objective?

Mercs Turn 6:

Josh tried to do the only thing he could: get Dougal out of combat with the Bloodtrackers. I got him on Free Strikes, and with that, Josh conceded, since I would score on this turn, then auto-win on my own turn.

For fun, he tried to kill my Warden with Bart, but failed.

Results: Win for Circle via Scenario!!

Post-game thoughts:

Well, this was the first time I've won a game via scenario in this grow league. We finally have enough models to work toward scenario, and I love it! I'm generally a "scenario is more important than just killing stuff" kind of guy, and this game exemplified that.

I also really liked the terrain we had - my previous games have been kind of surrounded by terrain, but nobody actually used it. I like having that added element to games - I must be getting more comfortable with my playing, since I'm starting to appreciate more complexity :)

Game 3: Baldur1 vs. Xerxes1

Baldur1 List:

-Wold Guardian
-Wold Warden

Shifting Stones
Tharn Bloodtrackers
-Nuala the Huntress

Xerxes1 List:


Arcuraii (min)
Pain Givers (max)

Void Spirit

I won the roll to go first (all three today, woo!) and decided I liked the forest objective too much to forfeit that advantage. So, I took 2nd and chose my side.

Pre-game Thoughts:

Man, Skorne is always a lot tougher than they seem like they should be. With the shooting debuffs from the Krea and the Beast debuffs from the Agonizer, their guys are always super resilient.

I just wanted to control the board and kill some stuff. I knew that his army would be slow - no movement buff shenanigans, so maybe I could win via scenario again. I knew that Bloodtrackers might be money this game, so I wanted to make sure I was a little more conservative with them.


Heh, Xerxes is a cool model. Love his weird club things :)

Here's the girl I played last week. She really wanted a picture of herself in this report for some reason. Leighanna or something. I forget how to spell it. Heh.

Skorne Turn 1:

He moved forward and buffed his Arcuraii as much as possible, including giving them Defender's Ward.

Awkward sideways shot. Not sure why some of them come out this way.

Circle Turn 1:

I threw Stone Skin up on the Bloodtrackers and Solid Ground up on Baldur. I made some forests and advanced some. Pretty standard stuff.

My first Prey target was the Arcuraii, FYI.

Skorne Turn 2:

His guys moved up and Vince popped his feat, giving the lot of them altogether too much armor and defense. He didn't do much (if any) damage, but his guys were in place to really mess with me.

Of note, he decided not to use the Agonizer's aura this turn, since he didn't think any of my beasts would be close enough to do anything and he wanted to save the fury.

Well, he's got a ridiculous amount of DEF and ARM right now, but I need to do something to stop him or he'll put some hurt on me next turn.
Circle Turn 2:

I didn't want to, but felt that I needed to kill some of the Arcuraii this turn. So, first the Stones went and warped the Guardian into B2B with the front two Arcuraii.

Guardian then pounded those two Arcuraii into dust.

Warden moved forward and cast Earth Spikes on the Krea, boosted, and got a Crit! It knocked down the Krea, Agonizer, and an Arcuraii.

Baldur activated, used the Woldwarden's Animus on himself and Forest Walked into B2B with my objective. He also cast Stone Skin on the Bloodtrackers and made a forest the Bloodtrackers could run into for fun with their reform move.

Bloodtrackers then went and killed the Knocked Down Arcuraii, doing a little damage to the Agonizer, but not enough to kill it.

Loving Nuala so far - Reform is so much better than I had previously thought it would be!

Skorne Turn 3:

I had forgotten to pop my feat, so his Arcuraii charged and did like 11 damage to my Guardian. The Cannoneer charged the Guardian and barely killed him. Very preventable if I had only popped my feat! Doh :)

His Void Spirit charged the Bloodtrackers and took a swing, missing. Bloodtrackers passed the panic check.

Drake spray-killed two Bloodtrackers.

Xerxes walked up and dominated his own objective for a point.

I scored another point in his turn as well.

Score: 2-1, Advantage Circle.

Nice to be getting some points in my opponent's turn :)

Circle Turn 3:

Bloodtrackers needed to do more work, I thought.

Warden walked up and shot Earth Spikes into the Krea, knocking it down and doing some significant damage.

Bloodtrackers moved around, and shot down the final Arcuraii, cycling Prey to the Void Spirit. Two of the Bloodtrackers hit the Void Spirit and killed him. They cycled Prey to the Krea and killed it, cycling prey to the Drake. They then somehow managed to also kill the Drake.

They then cycled Prey to Xerxes, but were out of spears. A couple of them engaged the Cannoneer for funsies.

Pretty good turn for the Bloodtrackers. POW/STR 13 Weaponmasters at range is ridiculous!

I also scored another point.

Score: 3-1, Advantage Circle.

I needed a good turn, and got one. Bloodtrackers are silly :)

Skorne Turn 4:

Vince killed as many Bloodtrackers as he could, and ran Xerxes over to stay away from the Bloodtrackers.

Cannoneer killed some Bloodtrackers and contested the objective, as did the Agonizer.

That Cannoneer is going to make things really tough - I can't really kill it very easily. Gotta try to win the game this turn.

Circle Turn 4:

I noticed something: only a couple pain givers were contesting his objective. If I could kill them and get Baldur to the objective, I'd be golden.

So, I started with the Bloodtrackers and managed to kill all the Paingivers near the enemy objective.

Baldur walked into the Stones' Radius.

Stones teleported him into B2B with the enemy objective, which he dominated for 2 points.

Dominating the opponent's objective, FTW!

Results: Win for Circle Orboros via Scenario!!

Post-game thoughts:

Well, I made things harder on myself by not popping my feat, but otherwise I felt like I played a fairly solid game! I'm starting to get better at paying attention to the scenario, and I'm getting smoother at figuring out what order my activations need to go in.

Overall, this game went well, and all my games showed a (I thought) marked improvement over how I've been operating thus far.

Next Week:

People are getting new casters to go with their battlegroup. I'd take Baldur2, but I won't be there next week. Sorry to disappoint - I've got a Warhammer Fantasy GT to play up in Omaha. Expect some reports from that coming up, along with some reports from the local 2000 point tournament I played in last weekend as well.

Let me know what you think - do you like these reports? Are they helpful/informative enough? I always appreciate input.

See you all sometime soon!

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