On the Kromac 2 train still, this time into a matchup that I think pre-CID is very nearly unwinnable. Arkadius is a caster who I had never personally played against before this game, although I have certainly done a lot of dojo on him in the past. He can make his speed 5 models threaten something like 19 inches at MAT 8, up to PS 24, and ignoring most terrain thanks to the Gatorman Witch Doctor.
It's also in the Will Work for Food theme, so if he gets to go first, Arkadius' beasts are on the 21 inch line turn 1 and then threaten 2 inches into your deployment turn 2.
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.
- War Hog
- War Hog
- Road Hog
- Road Hog
- Battle Boar
Kwaak Slickspine and Gub, Attorneys at Law
Bog Trog Mistspeaker
Gatorman Witch Doctor
Farrow Bone Grinders
- Storm Raptor
- Warpwolf Stalker
- Feral Warpwolf
- Shadowhorn Satyr
- Shadowhorn Satyr
Blackclad Wayfarer (proxied by Druid)
Lord of the Feast
Farrow Valkyries (Troll models)
Andrew's list is probably my favorite version that I have seen, with Brun and Lug being insanely dark horsey and potent in their own right, Dahlia shutting down a lot of armies on her own, and the other solos giving you Magic protection, Ghost Walk on a stick, magical weapons to deal with Wraith Engines, and either double Venom or Enliven with the Attorneys.
I sadly lost the roll to go first, and Andrew happily let me choose sides. I knew there was almost literally nothing I could do to avoid the alpha strike, so I took the side of the table with the house close to the objective to limit the number of heavies that could get to me.
Minions turn 1:
With the theme force benefit, the beasts are all in my face right away.
Forced Evolution ends up on the War Hog to my right, another War Hog goes and hides behind the wall. Andrew has to respect the potential 14 inch threat range of the Storm Raptor here, so models do not go quite as far as they can.
Brun puts up Stonehold and charges up the table with Lug ahead of him. Dahlia puts Haunting Melody up and Mist Walker on Skareth so he can get through the puddle.
Circle turn 1:
I really cannot stay out of threat range of all of his beasts, but I can make sure that he only gets to me with the two War Hogs and hope that they cannot kill enough to let me go into the post-feat phase of the game.
As such, Kromac puts Vengeful on the Storm Raptor since he still has reasonable odds of knocking out an aspect with a Retaliatory Strike plus Skyfire Plasma Nimbus. He also puts Awakened Spirit on the Feral, and then he moves up a couple of inches.
The Shadowhorns lead the way, casting Evasive on themselves for free from the theme benefit, and blocking landing zones to the Storm Raptor, who also moves up, casts Skyfire, and puts two shots into the left hand War Hog. The first misses, and the second I cannot boost damage for, so it plinks for a couple.
The Stalker moves up ahead of the Feral and Kromac, and Lord of the Feast runs wayyyy off to the side to maybe come in and contest next turn if I cannot with anything else.
Minions turn 2:
The objective gives the right hand War Hog Pathfinder, and Andrew upkeeps all of his spells.
The Gatorman Witch Doctor moves up and gives the left Road Hog Ghostly, and the Battle Boar Primals the left War Hog.
Arkadius moves up, Primals the other Road Hog, and feats. Both War Hogs frenzy at the Storm Raptor thanks to the feat, and nothing else opts to.
The right side War Hog moves up and kills the Stalker off with initials and a bought attack. It swings into the Satyr and misses, so I get to Dodge away thanks to Elusive.
The other War Hog opts to put up Unstoppable Force to try and bulldoze the Satyr closer to the Storm Raptor and be able to overtake into it. This means that he drops to Mat 6 as Primal goes away, and the Satyr is able to Dodge away before dying (barely).
Lug and Skareth both move up fairly aggressively, and both Road Hogs move up to do some sprays. They get Enliven from the Attorneys at Law, and after a few more solo movements, Andrew passes the turn.
Circle turn 2:
I didn't lose nearly so much as I or Andrew expected, and that means that I get to have a reasonable offensive feat turn here.
The first thing I notice is that Lug is within charge range of Kromac if I can land the Hunters' Mark. Further, after a quick check, I can keep my Warbeasts in control by doing so. The Hunters' Mark lands, and Kromac Feats and charges in on the hapless bear, killing him with three Fury to spare.
The Feral puts Primal on the headless Shadowhorn, and then kills the War Hog in his way. That Satyr is in range to walk, jump, and then start beating on Skareth at effective MAT 10 PS 18/17/17, which has a really good chance at kill him him. This is only possible because of the Pathfinder added by CID rules.
However, after a quick check, we realize that it can also jump onto Arkadius and throw him back at the Storm Raptor. I do forget about Guardian Beast, but the tusks don't cripple anything, nor do they get a Critical to knock me down, so the Shadowhorn is able to jump onto Arkadius and throw him seven inches towards the Storm Raptor. Again, the Pathfinder change is the only reason this was possible.
The other Satyr jumps over the War Hog in front of him and beats on Arkadius until he runs out of attacks, at which point the Blackclad on the side moves up, casts a Hunters' Mark on Arkadius, and the Storm Raptor charges over the other War Hog to electrocute the Good Doctor to death.
Victory for the Druids!
Orange: Nothing Again:
Light Green: Shadowhorn Satyrs feel a touch overtuned at this moment. The Elusive animus is extremely strong on this model, since it is almost always DEF 15 against charges, and DEF 13 in melee means that most MAT 6 Warbeasts and Warjacks are not going to kill it.
The addition of pathfinder is also making it much better at the job it already did, namely jumping on an opposing heavy and allowing you to piece trade initiate with a cheaper model.
Now, this could easily be the result of many, many games with Circle pre-CID and getting used to the feeling of terrain really restricting my placement and also not being able to fit efficient heavies into lists because they tend to be too expensive, and it is difficult for me to separate that past experience from this present one. I think the Shadowhorn is probably okay given the state of the game and the new Steamroller terrain requirements, but it was the standout model of this game.
Green: Everything else seemed good to go!