And now we have the member of the team who is not actually from Northern Ireland: it’s a-me! For reasons too silly to explore now I usually don’t use my real name in gaming circles, but thanks to online registration and payment for various tournaments around Europe it’s surfacing more and more, sometimes even with my middle name thrown in for good measure. Take it away, me!
The Seven-Month Itch
My name is Siskey and I am a Kreoss player. Any kind of Kreoss, it doesn’t matter( there are only three…Ed.), I’ve played him lots of times now. I’ve used every spell on those cards, feated, charged, whiffed, been assassinated and assassinated others. I’ve done it all, with those three. In the run-up to the Irish Masters this year, I decided to play the three incarnations of Kreoss and so played nearly nothing else for four months. Now, with the World Team Championships looming close, my natural choice for lists has settled on my two most familiar casters. It helps that they’re very good in their own right.
But as a Protectorate player, I’m feeling limited. Committing to playing nothing but Kreoss in competitive play has started to grate a little. The High Exemplar and the Intercessor are great, don’t get me wrong. But there are twelve other warcasters out there that I haven’t played in a serious game in months now. I’ve begun thinking of the aftermath of the WTC as my post-Kreoss phase.
Game 4 vs Mat playing Skorne – Zaal
You know you’re playing members of a different meta when you set your army down and their reaction is unexpected. For a little while I was the only player playing Protectorate in Dublin, and I am not one to strike fear into my opponents’ hearts. So when I put them down and Mat’s reaction is “Oh great, Menoth!” it’s a bit of an eye-opener. We haven’t met before so we have a little talk. Mat is from the North, and plays Skorne and Protectorate, and is thinking of playing Convergence. Today, though, it’s Skorne, which is not a faction I have much experience against since all our local Skorne players keep selling off the faction wholesale to each other every three months.
Game 3 vs Adam playing Minions – Rask
Adam is one of those players who switches faction quite often but always gravitates back to one, and in his case that’s Minions. I’ve played against Minions a handful of times – always Blindwater Congregation – but it’s a different warlock every time. His pair is Barnabus and Rask, neither of whom I’ve faced before. I have a look at my little green book and it says Kreoss1 for Minions. Also Adam asks which of my lists have magical weapons, so all signs point to Errants and Vessel and Aiyana and Holt! Still, I’ve heard Rask is pretty nasty, I’m starting to think a dance-off for the game might be a better idea.
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.
Heading Beyond The Wall
On this Emerald Isle of ours, conventions are most often run by college gaming societies, with some notable exceptions. These have great advantages to them, they can often get a space for less than the going rate, and they have a ready stable of volunteers to help run the thing. The risk with them is that priorities and expectations among the organisers can change. Up in Belfast, the Queen’s University convention is called Q-Con. Back when I went to it first in 2007 it was mainly a gaming convention, but with quite a lot of anime and cosplay going on. Last year, the convention had grown but only in terms of these two elements. Wargaming in particular as a space-heavy pastime was feeling marginalised. So they broke away and formed their own convention just for them, called Nordicon. It uses the same amazing space as Q-Con, but instead of people in Sailor Moon costumes it’s exclusively wargamers.
As a member of Team Northern Ireland for the upcoming WTC, it was my duty and delight to attend. Bright and early on Saturday morning, Stu Who Learns From Forums and I were collected by Noel and we began the journey. Talk on the way up was about the Northern Irish meta, what lists we were bringing, and previous misadventures regarding the North. We got up to Belfast in good time, and then proceeded to drive at random (I had unwisely proclaimed I knew the way to Queen’s) until we found our location. Convenient parking and a short walk brought us to the fantastic Student Union building, and we were ready to go!
Chapter Two: The Brown Land
Part Six: What The Thunder Said
Battle lines had been drawn, and what had been isolated skirmishes was now all out war for the Darkfen. Unless they can push the Trollbloods and their allies out of the marsh, the Menites’ plans lie in ruins, and the city of Merwynn could be under threat. The United Kriels need to show their strength to gain allies in their constant quest for survival.
They clash in the Darkholm, the forbidding forest which clings to the Darkhills which surround Merwynn. Grand Scrutator Severius leads his men without fear, but is this a fight the Menites can win?