I got to play some games with actual models this last week at the lovely Mox Boarding House in Bellevue, and I took a Circle pairing and a Trolls pairing and then ended up playing Circle nearly every game.
I was, once again, using spoiled CID rules from Lock and Load for this game and it is the exact same list as last time. For reference, here are the changes to the current rules that I was playtesting.
These are unreleased rules that I am playing with in order to prep feedback for the upcoming CID, if you are not interested in reading a report featuring them you should stop reading now.
Mat up to 6
Skyfire Animus reduced to cost 1, affects models within 10"
Gains Deceptively Mobile (basically reposition 3)
Points reduced by 1 to 37
Points reduced by 2 to 19
Points reduced by 2 to 16
Points reduced by 1 to 11
Animus changed to Elusive
I had a couple of proxies, as I am still assembling my Circle collection again. The Troll models were Farrow Valkyries, and the lone Druid was a second Blackclad.
Taryn di la Rovissi
Gorman Di Wulfe
Thorn Gun Mages
- Storm Raptor
- Warpwolf Stalker
- Feral Warpwolf
- Shadowhorn Satyr
- Shadowhorn Satyr
Blackclad Wayfarer (proxied by Druid)
Lord of the Feast
Farrow Valkyries (Troll models)
I was able to win the roll to go first with the +1 benefit from Call of the Wild and opted to go first, since neither table edge was particularly advantageous for me. My opponent picked the side with a trench to hide all of his valuable solos in, and we were off!
Circle turn 1:
There are two main spells Kromac casts turn one in this list and then upkeeps every turn. Vengeful goes on the Storm Raptor, especially against Warmachine factions since he has Disruption on the beak attack. Awakened Spirit goes on the Feral because he is the only beast in the list without a 1 cost animus, and feels left out when all the other guys get to cast theirs for free.
After that, everything runs up. I think pretty hard about doing a cross swap here and sending the Storm Raptor to the side of the table where the Temple Flameguard will be. If they come in to attack it, they get to take a POW 12 electro leap from Plasma Nimbus if Skyfire is up, and they are not likely to kill a colossal at PS 10.
I decide that I want to test out the gun it brings to the table this game though, so it runs up across from the Vengers.
I set up my Shifting Stones so that they can teleport Kromac or a Blackclad next turn, and the Blackclad will be able to get deep into the forest and Hunters' Mark basically anything if I need to.
Everything else runs up at full speed and I call it a turn.
Mercenaries turn 1:
Without Hunters Mark, the Vengers actually threaten farther on the charge than the Storm Raptor does, and they set up just outside 12 inches from the Big Bird with the front pair.
Gastone puts Dauntless Resolve on that unit (+3 ARM and tough) and Lifebound on the Flameguard (the entire unit gains Shield Guard and Gastone gets their souls if they die).
His army shuffles up, and Reinholdt strips the Lord of the Feasts stealth so Taryn can take a couple of shots at him. DEF 14 from the hill means she misses one, and so he survives on five boxes.
Circle turn 2:
I see a couple of interesting plays here. Kromac upkeeps both of his spells.
On the left, Lord of the Feast shoots his Raven into the backlines so that he can get melee on Rhupert, Gorman, and Ragman.
Sadly, he misses the 5 he needs to hit Rhupert, so all three solos live. We also remember later that my opponent could have just Shield Guarded the Raven somewhere else in the Flameguard unit.
On the right, I decide to try out the gun on Stormy, and so he moves up to within ten inches of both front Vengers and casts Skyfire for free. At RAT 8 effectively, he hits the first Venger and boosts the now POW 16 shot into him. At dice off 5, it kills the Cavalry model. I reload for one, shoot the second Venger, and boost again, rolling the 12 I need to kill him. Then, the Storm Raptor repositions backwards out of range of the Vengers.
My left hand Shadowhorn gets brave and walks and jumps into the zone, throwing the Rover back towards the Storm Raptor. He casts Evasive for free. The Stalker charges the Rover for free after a Hunters' Mark is applied and kills it on the last attack before casting Lightning Strike for free and Sprinting back to the zone.
The Feral moves up and goes central, and the other Shadowhorn moves up and casts Evasive.
Kromac decides he can take one Venger Charge, and moves up to the Flag.
Mercenaries turn 2:
Gastone upkeeps both spells. He allocates two to the Toro and also activates first, Feating and getting away from the second Shadowhorn. He kills a Shifting Stone and Run and Guns back.
On the right, the Vengers get two charges into my Shadowhorn, which leaves it on about eight boxes, and the other runs to contest my flag.
His solo boat eventually murders Lord of the Feast, and his Flameguard Shield Wall and Reposition into my zone thanks to Gibbs. Taryn takes over his flag, and his support jacks hang out in the way of Gastone.
I forgot to take a picture of this turn, but my opponent scored his flag. I believe the reason Gastone was not in the zone is because the Shadowhorn could have jumped to him if he was.
Score: 0 - 1
Circle turn 3:
I drop Awakened Spirit because I think Kromac is gonna have to do work this turn and I don't want him to die.
The Stealth part of Gastone's feat is really problematic here, as I cannot land a Hunters' Mark on his Toro, and without it I cannot get there with the Storm Raptor.
Kromac feats and kills the Venger engaging the Storm Raptor before healing the Shadowhorn for three.
The Feral warps Armor and kills the left hand Venger in the way of the Shadowhorn. The Shadowhorn, now unencumbered by two engaging models walks to within six of the Toro BUT not within three inches of the forest edge so the Jack cannot countercharge, and then leaps next to it. A second throw, and the Jack is knocked down and 6 inches closer to the Storm Raptor. The Shadowhorn casts Elusive for free.
The central Blackclad gets a Hunters Mark on the now toppled Toro and the Storm Raptor charges it, killing him and the last Venger and then using Deceptively Mobile to get into the zone after casting Skyfire.
The Stalker warps Berserk and kills the three contesting Flameguard before sprinting back to his place by the wall. This allows one Shifting Stone to contest the flag. The Valkyries run up the middle to Shield Guard the most things they can, and this time I score a point.
Score: 1 - 1
Mercenaries turn 3:
Lifebound stays up, and the Vanguard gets two focus.
The Flameguard Shield Wall up and hit the Feral for a few points with CMAs.
Gastone puts damage into the Storm Raptor even through Shield Guards thanks to the amazing gun he has, and then Repositions away thanks to Gibbs.
Both remaining Shifting Stones die, sadly, and the Buccaneer charges in and hits the Storm Raptor. The Retaliatory Strike from Vengeful half kills the poor light and disrupts it.
Mercenaries score yet again. as does Circle since Kromac is hanging out on the flag.
Score: 2 - 2
Circle turn 4:
Between Vengeance and regular attacks, the Valkyries kill three Flameguard. Kromac charges in and kills a few more with nothing but Corpse Tokens and casts Carnage and Lightning Strike in order to get back behind the forest to safety.
The Feral kills the remaining TFG, Ragman, and the Vanguard, while the Storm Raptor kills the objective and the Buccaneer before using Deceptively Mobile to reposition and block Line of Sight to Kromac from that side of the table, as Gastone is now on max souls.
I score one for the objective, one for my zone, and two for flags, while my opponent scores one for his flag.
Score: 6 - 3
Mercenaries turn 4:
"I'm gonna try and kill Kromac this turn."
Oh right, Thorn Gunmages have Thunderbolt.
The Gunmages push Kromac away from the forest, while Taryn puts Shadow Fire into the Storm Raptor.
Gastone moves up and puts all four shots into Kromac, but dice off 6 and three transfers keeps me alive. He uses a soul to make himself DEF 18 and casts Dauntless Resolve on himself to make himself ARM 18.
He contests the central flag and my zone, so we both score again.
Score: 7 - 4
Circle turn 5:
The Stalker kills the contesting Gunmage and Sprints to engage the other two. The Feral kills Rutger Shaw and a Thorn Gunmage, clearing my flag and contesting his.
Kromac casts Carnage and moves up to catch everything left.
The Storm Raptor charges Rhupert, killing him with a Talon which Electroleaps into Gibbs and kills him. A second initial kills Taryn and the Electro Leap kills Reinholdt. I reposition to engage Gastone, and I score three more points to win on Scenario.
Victory for the Druids!
Yellow: Both my opponent and I think Skyfire feels very strong now. For no cost in Call of the Wild, the Storm Raptor becomes a RAT 8 POW 16 gun with lightning generator that then moves back to be 13 inches away from what it shot at. This is arguably the best gun any of the Gargantuans have at this point, and it might warrant a closer look.
Green: The Pathfinder beasts feel extremely good in a very "this is what they always should have been way". Being able to fit a couple of "light" heavies into the list pushes this Kromac list into the same area of other beast spam lists as far as model count goes.
Deceptively mobile on the Storm Raptor and MAT 6 innately make this Gargantuan feel like it is worth the 37 points. I certainly wouldn't complain at a further points drop, but the combination of abilities, in this list at least, feel like they are worth the cost.