Sonntag, 20. Dezember 2015

Khador 2015, Part 19 - ClogCon Roundup

Most important things first: Harkevich and Krüger1 fall to Lady pZ. That's two things crossed of the World Domination List, boo-ya! *cough*

Yeah, so ClogCon happened from the 11th to the 13th, and which lists I brought, you're probably already aware if you read any of the lasts posts on this blog. ;)

Follow on to read about my games, thoughts and observations on these, as well as an evaluation of the list pair, mixed with potential changes.

Mind the gap.
Friday

   My original plan was to participate in the LCQ for the European Invitational and either get my shit kicked back in or luck out really hard (80:20). However, I was saved from potential disgrace and disappointment because there was a mix-up with my ride, so I arrived at about 5 o'clock pm, warmed up to the location, chatted up people I know, you know, the best thing about cons.

Game 1: pZ v. pKrüger - Incursion
   Admittedly, it was my opponent's first game with Circle, but then again, it also was my first game in God knows how long. This basically came down to him misjudging Krüger personal assassination potential (thought it was eKrüger), which led to pZ landing Icy Grip, Conquest blowing away the transfers, and the Outriders spraying him down.

Game 2: eZ v. eTwins - Incursion
    This game didn't really get finished (the location closed), even though it did - he was like "I think I can kill you from here" and I'm like "Ok, I want to see that" (I wasn't doubting it - I wanted to see it unfold). And yeah, did it unfold - just that he left Zerkova alive, and then it would have been my turn. A few thoughts: eTwins is a horrible matchup for my eZ list. Double Croak Raiders, one of them gets Banishing Ward, the other Occultation (obviously depending on what they're facing). I can also make the assassination a lot harder by NOT countercharging, leaning more on Self-Sac. Although I gotta say: That 6-6-5-4 on the countercharge damage roll was really nice (and cost a fury point).

Saturday

   Basically: Scrambler Day! I spent most of the time at Gamers of the West, thusly. (I also found a supermarket nearby, which is really great for Cons, too)

Game 3: eZ v. Barnabas - Recon
   In this game, the dice voted in favour of my opponent twice - once when my Bear's Strength'ed Riflecorps charged into the GMP (and failed command), and then again when a single Gatorman (the other having been successfully countercharged by a Reaverguardian) killed eZ. Okay, there was also a Wrastler surviving more than probably should, and TAC missing easy attack rolls under OW, but that wasn't as memorable. Biggest learning curve here was that a) AD Widowmakers can reach out and touch AD Croaks, which becomes important when there's twenty of those. b) the Feat works on a model-by-model basis, which is HUGE. I've yet to break out of the trap of going unit by unit, which cost me this game since one Ternion grunt died to a scattering fireblast, which he wouldn't have had to, and could've frozen a GMP leader. Also: keep firing at Gatorman & equivalents. It works better than going into melee.

Game 4: eZ v. eMorvahna - Outflank
   I just listened to an episode of The Leyline where they covered eMorvahna in particular and knew that I was pretty muched busted. Which wasn't that bad, game experience-wise - I had no need to get angry at good dice, because she'll never have bad ones. The only moment of tension was when I chose eZ and prayed to God he's not taking eKrüger so it'll at least be fun while it lasts. Main reason I lost was getting the turns mixed up, so he went to 3-0 really easy, and it was basically over from thereon out. Also, I'm apparently no good a threatening the hoarfrost assassination yet. Must've missed an opportunity there.

Game 5: pZ v. el Vlad - Fire Support
   This was really tense. I went for a very early charge/feat (w/o Watcher, because I'm dumb at times), which left Zerkova the foremost model of the Army, and Vlad was originally considering charging Conquest and sidestepping over to Zerkova - but a) the range was dubious in the first place, and b) Zerkova was in rough terrain, so the assassination was off the board. I got lucky with my objective not dying when it statistically should've, but failed to capitalize on that when I did charge his Spriggan with Conquest (who got gently destroyed), but not in such a manner that Conquest was contesting his flag. He managed to work out a way to score three points in a single turn and won. All in all, I could've probably won that game, which is encouraging.

Game 6: pZ v. Harkevich - Destruction
   His theme force was Conquest, Demolisher, Black Ivan, Double Fieldgun, Double Mechanics, WGI+UA and Joe. That's a lot of metal. This game drove home for me how good Eiryss2 is with pZ. Yes, you could buy back Ranged Attacks. But not without focus. Eiryss2 was the Star of the show - which was mainly the case because she just refused to die (was on 2 HP from two turns of ranged attacks when Conquest finally had it and punched her off the board). I used my feat to stall his advance, set up my own alpha and then went in with Ragman + Great Bears and Conquest onto his Conquest (which was narrowly within range). And they managed to take Conquest down, which doesn't sound like much lest I mention that it was Harkevich's feat turn. So yeah, the dice went "Right Hook!" "Left Hook!" "Uppercut!" "Elbow Rocket!" "Anvil PUNCH!" and killed him on the dot. Afterwards, it was a measure of keeping Zerkova from being shot (to which he came very close), and then mopping up all that could threaten Conquest, which included Harkevich.

Game 7: eZ v. pDeneghra - Two Fronts
   Two words: Tom Guan. Or, more CLUEDO like: Denny, In the killbox, with Venoms through an arcnode. I most certainly made a mistake by focusing on the Stitch Thralls to hard, and not lighting that Arcnode up further, which then ran into the wall of clouds provided by the TAC. Hm. I guess I forgot to Self Sac at least one Reaverguard. Eh. Another smart thing to have done (I was barely in the kill box) would have been: Place a Reaverguard thusly that anything entering the cloud wall is taking a Doomy to the face. Also, spacing out models to make his attrition a little more difficult, drawing the game out.
   In a certain way, Tom is like a Legion player, I guess: Every turn he hasn't won, he's one step closer to losing. (The game he lost in the LCQ went on for longer than 15 minutes, which may have been a factor) ;)

Game 8: pZ v. el Asphyxious - Close Quarters
   This game, I totally blanked on Mobility. See, there was this forest in the middle, behind which Asphyxious was. I knew he could see Conquest, and charge him, so I had to make sure not to present either Conquest to him, nor Zerkova by standing her too close to the big lug. And while he could've just, on my feat turn, walked through the forest with Mobility, and kill me, he (graciously) chose to go for scenario, by which way he also won. Dice were okay this game - I got two crits with the gun which helped keep DJ out of the game - but man, there's some silly stuff in Cryx. First off, Necrosurgeons, who are probably the most BS 2 points in existence, but aren't so tough when pZ can just Razor Wind them, which works well enough. My opponent also had four Soul Collectors, who, besides two great melee showings (killed Eiryss and Aiyana), didn't do stuff except collect souls and then die. And then there's Soul Hunters, who collect souls with only one of their two weapons, which can do stuff like leave those souls for DJ to grab. So not funny.

Sunday

Originally, I was thinking of merely going for pick-up games, but then they got me to join another Scrambler. Eh, 'tis not so bad. ;) Was only 35 points, though, and that certainly hurt listbuilding wise.

Game 9: pZ v. eKromac - Outflank
   Great. eKromac, two Stalkers, Gethorix, Gorax, Wilder. I need to get better with regards to Aggravator, because this game emphasised the importance of Guns with pZ - a Control Feat is only half as awesome if your enemy can just back up and still be out of your threat range, i.e. suffers no repercussions from doing so (especially with a scenario like Outflank). It also helps to not have the side with wall, because that and Colossals don't mix. After a single Great Bear did a serious number on a Stalker, he went for the trample assassination with Gethorix, which worked.

Game 10: pZ v. pThagrosh - Incursion
   Now I should mention that my 35pt list included Harlan Versh - my opponent has had bad experiences with him, and therefor was really afraid of putting any upkeeps anywhere. My menace this game was that bloody Death Shroud, which resulted in a Carnivean not dying when it should've, and therefor blocked Conquest from getting to what it should've gotten to. (I could've helped that by piling the Bears onto the hurt Carnivean instead of spreading them out.) Warspears are great. In this match - probably emphasised by the smaller points value - it became clear that I can use the IFP to deliver Conquest, but they will suffer too great losses to make an impact afterwards. So I'd better have something to deliver THEM, too. Something that can just go and die. Hmmm...

Game 11: pZ v. pAbsylonia - Recon
   This game once again taught two things: Distance is the best Defense, and: Warlocks don't give a shit about freestrikes, no matter the P&S. Basically, when then game was, say, still at 50:50, I chose to keep Zerkova by the Conquest instead of abandoning it (having just killed Typhon (brought him to three boxes with two swings and no focus (because of Blightfield!). Get rekt!), leaving only an Angelius and a Seraph), so Abby was able to warp Flight, and come over to punch me down. There was still enough game left when I chose to give it away. Also, Versh lit up the Angelius while it was on a hill, under Tenacity and Forced Evolution. He didn't kill it, but it still was awesome.

And that concluded my ClogCon gaming experiences, with me finishing 2:9. On that note: pZ remains the most successful Caster here. ;) Time to update that graphic.

General Observations:
 - Conquest needs to run first turn, or he will never ever get to those parts of the fight where he is needed.
 - Nobody expects Pathfinder on pZ.
 - Every time you end Conquest's activation where he either hit all his attacks or critically hit on his main gun, don't forget to point at the victimised model and go "GET REKT!" ;)
 - As it stands, Volkov, Kolsk and Yarovich are the "YOLO Bears of Gallowswood", while Versh is still "Harlan Motherfuckin' Versh"
 - The reasoning that Conquest can protect pZ with his gun is flawed. In general, if a model commits to going there (lest it be by mistake), it will engage something, which makes hitting a real problem, and severely lowers the odds of being an effective method of stopping assassinations.
 - Distance is the best defense.
 - Conquest IS 2500 tons of awesome. And I feel that the Viktor's minimum range can be a real detriment. I might elaborate on this next year, but in a nutshell: He doesn't contribute to the fight the way Conquest does, which might leave some of his huge-based advantages to be non-factors for a game.

Lists/List Pair considerations:

   From my observations, the lists work well in tandem, with me probably being the weakest link due to my lack of practice. With regards to my eZ list, here's a couple of non-sweeping changes I could see working:
 - Swap the Koldun Lord for Alten Ashley. Eiryss1 does embarassingly little against Hordes, but her Death Bolt should work small miracles when teamed up with Alten Ashley's Monster Hunter Ability, potentially taking off small aspects wholesale. However, THAT is more ARM cracking, kinda, and might be better off in the other list.
 - On that note, you could also go with the full Rifle Brigade, and bring in the Marksman as well as Kell Bailoch, maybe in exchange for the GL Ternion.

   Having played it in the majority of games, my thoughts on the pZ ARM cracking list are obviously a little more numerous:
 - This list could do even better with a Casterswap. I'd expect equal-to-better performance with Old Witch, and likely better performance with Sorscha2 or Butcher3 - any Caster that's not to reliant on directly affecting his army (though Irusk1 is a serious consideration, too).
 - The bottom-line swap would be taking out the minimum Outriders (a size which doesn't really work out that well) and putting in Pressgangers - chaff to deliver the IFP, which deliver the Conquest. I'll definitely implement this.
 - Another simple consideration is swapping out Conquest (as sad as that is) for a Spriggan and a Grolar.
 - The last easy consideration is swapping Gorman (who was mainly there for rust, though the Smoke is also nice) and Reinholdt for Hutchuck, Ogrun Bounty Hunter. This gives me a Rust that's easier&safer to deliver, and really frees up the real estate around pZ, which was kinda cluttered at times. And he brings a P&S 14 Mace. And further Grenades.
 - Other ideas are including Rorsh&Brine with a Splatterboar - psychoactive gas might just be nuts, and between you, me, and the kids, Brine will be at virtual P&S 20. There's also Malakov to consider, but preferably with a Reach Jack or Grolar (see comment about the enemy backing away w/o problems above).
 - On the topic of the Hordes matchup, including Eiryss1 and Alten might be an option, though in light of a such a definitive skew, Butcher3 might actually be the very best consideration here.

And that concludes this article. The last article for this year will be a wrap-up of 2015, coming sometime between Christmas and New Year's Eve.

But until then,
farewell.