Game 2 vs VagrantPoet playing Protectorate
The the major downside of winning your first round, in the second round you have to try to do it again, and against someone you know was good enough to win the first time! At least I had a whole lunch break to decide what I was going to put on the table for this game. VP was playing Feora2 and the High Reclaimer.
The Feora2 list has the Judicator, a Reckoner, a Vanquisher and a Devout, Rhoven & Co and some Zealots and support elements including a maximum Choir. The High Reclaimer list includes Bastions, Idrians and lots of other nasty surprises. The way I see it, my Kreoss3 list should do well against his Feora2, and my Kreoss1 list is necessary if he puts High Reclaimer down. If we mix and match outside of these two match-ups, things could get real messy. In the end, however, I consult my little green book and I see that neither of these warcasters are the Harbinger of Menoth (it’s always worth checking), and so it says Kreoss3. I bite the bullet and put him down, figuring that I need the heavy-hitting either way.
Et voila! It’s Feora2 versus Kreoss3.
The scenario this round is Incursion, which I’m happy with as Kreoss is mobile enough to end up pretty much anywhere on the board, and the rest of the list can get places in a hurry too. I’m starting to feel a bit nervous however as VP is one of the better players on the island. But then I remember a discussion we were having over lunch about a presentation skills seminar, where we were encouraged to adopt a power stance to increase testosterone and decrease stress hormones. The answer to my nerves is clear: pose.
I go first, and VP pre-deploys his Judicator to his right. My Vengers go down opposite it, with my Flameguard in the centre with the warjacks behind them. There’s a slanted wall to my right, and Kreoss lines up to go in behind that. VP’s Zealots are in the centre with Feora behind them, and the Reckoner and Vanquisher line up on the left. His enormous Choir are ranged across the back of the board.
In my turn, everything runs bar Kreoss and the Choir. Kreoss puts Holy Ward on the Vengers, and does not quite make it in behind the wall. The Choir sing Passage on the three warjacks.
VP is playing cautiously, and he doesn’t do what I would do and try to attack everything in sight. Instead the Zealots run up in front of the Judicator and put Greater Destiny on themselves, blocking my charges from the Vengers. Everything else runs up, ready to unleash havoc next turn.
I drop Holy Ward on the Vengers. This is Kreoss’ feat turn, so once the Flameguard have Iron Zeal’d and run up around the centre flag, he moves to the centre. Ignite goes on the Vengers, Holy Ward on the Flameguard, Warpath on Kreoss and despite Spiritual Channelling I have no Death Sentence target. Two of the Vengers still get a charge on the Judicator and take about half of its right-hand box, nudging in amongst the Zealots. The warjacks move up with Passage on them once again, hopefully in position to get some charges next turn.
VP’s Vanquisher places a pie-plate on top of the Flameguard, setting nearly half of them on fire and killing the central target. He has no reason to fear ranged attacks or spells, so the Choir sing Battle every turn. The Zealots spread themselves out and throw some bombs into the Flameguard and the Vengers, killing one or two Flameguard but leaving the Vengers more or less intact. Judicator shoots at the Vengers this turn, killing 1 and leaving the rest Battle-Driven.
The Fire of Salvation was annoyed about its comrades being killed (mostly burned to death, pesky Corrosive Presence!), so it moved up into position to hopefully wreck VP’s Devout this turn. Kreoss upkept all his spells, and handed 2 focus to the Templar and 1 to the Reckoner. The Vengers, surprisingly alive, charged the Judicator again, who was looking a little worse for wear. The Reclaimer loaded up the Fire of Salvation with focus, and he went on a bit of a spree, charging and destroying the Devout, and then Warpathing himself into combat with VP’s Reckoner. I fluffed the Templar’s activation, I had meant to Warpath him first and then charge Rhoven & the Honour Guard, leaving him engaging the Vanquisher. However this was not to be so he ended up swinging in the wind. The Flameguard cleared off the centre flag, and the Reckoner ran over to control the left-hand flag, leaving me 2 points up.
In VP’s turn, having cleared off the remaining Vengers, the Judicator charged my Reckoner and destroyed him, but he wasn’t quite B2B with the flag. The Fire of Salvation was destroyed by VP’s Reckoner, and the Templar was destroyed by a mix of the Honour Guard and his Vanquisher. So much for my warjacks! He contested the centre flag but the remnants of my Flameguard were still hanging on so no score for him there. Feora meanwhile backed up and around the Judicator.
Time for Kreoss3 to shine! With some Reconnaissance work from Saxon, Kreoss charged the Judicator and ended up B2B with the flag. Thanks to the earlier work from the Vengers, he finished off the Judicator with 3 focus left, having cast Ignite on himself with Harmonious Exaltation from the Hierophant. The Vassal tried to punk out Rhoven with an Arcane Bolt, but his attack roll missed. The other flag-contesting bits and pieces tried to clear off the middle flag, but it looked like I’d have to weather one more turn on 4 points!
In VP’s turn, Feora cowboy’d up, Fire Stepped to the other side of the wall she was hiding behind and then charged Kreoss, dealing him 9 damage and lighting him on fire. Rhoven charged him too, doing another 7 damage on a massive damage roll. But the Intercessor was still standing, and the immortal words were uttered. “Barring a ridiculous fire roll, he’ll still be alive.” Still 4-0 on control points.
Ridiculous fire roll ensues, Kreoss burns to death. C’est la vie!
We were really surprised after this game to find we were the first ones finished. Every game this round was grindy as all hell, and nearly half went down to Deathclock, which shows how close they were I suppose!
I was pleased with how I played in this game. I would of course have been delighted to have won it but this tournament I finally felt I was getting to grips with how the list works. Everything in it is pretty expendable, you have enough different elements that have an effect on the game to feel comfortable with losing almost everything. VP was really helpful in this game helping me clarify what victory condition I was aiming for, and hinting how I might enable scenario victory (e.g. Force Hammering his Reckoner away from the centre flag).
Since lunch had gone a bit long we were straight into the next round. This time my opponent was none other but the main man, the whole package, the furry heart and soul of the crew, the one and only Adam, my fellow Team Northern Ireland member. He suggested a dance-off, but since I knew I could never defeat him I opted to play some Warmachine. Check back tomorrow for Round 3!