Warmachine and Hordes Circle Battle Report: Grayle (Dev Host) vs. Vlad 1 (Winterguard)

Another day, another CID report! Grayle has always been one of my favorite Warlocks. He's got a pretty huge non-linear threat range himself (charge 10, 2 side steps) and he has anti shooting, anti clouds, a good statline, Storm Rager, etc. 

This was played with week one rules, but the only things that really changed (Rapid Healing on Ghetorix, Battle Wizard on Shaman) did not come up. 

We were testing out Vlad 1 Rocket Spam today, because it seems like something that would generally prey on a list full of dudes. Let's go!

Vlad 1
- Victor

Artillery Captain
Kovnik Joe
Widowmaker Marksman
Gobber Tinker

Winter Guard Infantry (min)
- CA
- Rocket x3
Winter Guard Rifle Corps (min)
- Rocket x3
Winter Guard Rifle Corps (min)
- Rocket x3
Field Gun
Mortar Crew
Ayanna and Holt
- Valachev

Grayle
- Blood Shaman
- Ghetorix
- Feral

Lord of the Feast
Whitemane
Ravager Shaman

Brighid and Caul
Tharn Ravagers
- Chieftain
Tharn Ravagers
- Chieftain
Tharn Bloodweavers
- Haruspex
Shifting Stones
- Stone Keeper
 

I won the roll off (big deal!) and my opponent took the side with the trench away from me. I opt to Ambush my Bloodweavers. Three corpses go on Caul and three go on Lord of the Feast. Brighid and Caul put Prey on the Victor.

Circle turn 1:

Everything runs up conservatively, checking threat ranges and trying to threaten a big chunk of the table. I can't really do a lot about the Victor gun, so I just spread out to avoid it as best I can on the right. 

The Blood Shaman uses Harmonious Exaltation on Grayle. 

Storm Rager goes on Caul and Death March goes on the left hand unit of Ravagers, mainly to make them MAT 9. 

Lord of the Feast runs wayyy off to the side. 

Khador turn 1:

Phil clumps up in the middle of the field to avoid the Bloodweaver ambush as much as possible. They launch a couple of rockets and kill a Ravager with their shots on the right, triggering Vengeance. 

On the left, my opponent debates popping a Widowmaker shot off until he realizes it'll trigger Vengeance there as well, and probably end the game with the amount of models I could then get to. 

The Victor misses and deviates harmlessly away. 

I don't have a picture for this turn, but the setup is similar to the next turn. 

Circle turn 2:

I ambush the Bloodweavers on the right. 

I am able to Vengeance and charge one Winterguard with a Ravager, and the rest spread out in the zone. The Lord of the Feast whiffs his shot, but he's far enough off to the side so that he might survive. 

On the left, I scoot things up. Grayle has upkept both spells and then casts Wind Blast in an inconvenient location. He also pops his Feat to catch most of the left side of the table. Ghetorix casts Spiny Growth, and stays out of the 13 inch threat range of the Victor. 

The Bloodweavers run in and engage almost an entire unit of Winterguard. 

I put Brighid back pretty ridiculously far to prevent her from dying and making Caul almost worthless.

Khador turn 2:

Vlad gives the Conquest two focus, and he goes first to cast Signs and Portents. Joe gives the blue unit +2 to hit, and they butcher the Bloodweaver unit and kill a Ravager. 

Ayanna, Holt, and Valachev get harm on the right Ravager unit and kill off two Ravagers and then the Chieftain. 

Opponent: "Wait that gets rid of Vengeance too?"

Me: "Yup, sure does! Gonna make that side interesting."

Opponent: "That's ridiculous! That needs to get fixed!"

I concur. 

Anyway, in the middle, the WGI kill off the Ravager in the forest, and on the left nothing gets shot at to avoid Vengeance since everything has Stealth and blast damage will do almost nothing thanks to Rapid Healing.

Neither of us scores. 

Circle turn 3:

Well, there's a MAT 9 unit of Ravagers in charge range of multiple Winterguard. The Mini-Feat lets two Ravagers chew through about 15 Winterguard models and the Field Gun before they each double ones and miss. 

Ghetorix charges the objective and wrecks it before putting up Spiny Growth.

I keep Grayle hecka safe and move the Feral and Brighid and Caul up to retaliate when the Victor murders Ghetorix. 

Lord of the Feast hits his Raven this time, and kills 5 Winterguard Rifle dudes and the Mortar Crew.

Score: 2 - 0
Advantage Circle

Khador turn 3:

The Conquest gets loaded, Vlad feats for a free charge and puts up Signs and Portents. At dice +4, the Conquest kills Ghetorix with initials and splats the Ravager next to him. He takes 3 damage from Spiny Growth

Various other shots are taken, Ayanna and Holt take the right zone. 

Score: 2 - 1
Advantage Circle

Circle turn 4:

Caul gets Divine Inspiration and the twins charge the Conquest, rolling a little hot (something like 1.5 over average per hit) to leave the Conquest on 5 boxes. 

The Whitemane charges it next and puts it down. 

My opponent call it here, as I still have three Ravager charges and a Warped Speed Primaled Feral to charge Vlad with. 

Victory for the Circle. 

CID-Thoughts:

Red: Granted Vengeance really needs to become Tactics Vengeance. This was explicitly called out as a poor play experience in the Dawnguard Sentinels and it is no less so here. This is both my opponent and my own feedback. 

Orange/Yellow: Top end damage output from Brighid and Caul is kind of silly. Admittedly, losing Brighid completely kills that dream off, but when they both get to something, they wreck it. Most non-Victor/Conquest colossals would not have survived even the pair of them. 

Other than that, we played an infantry blending army into a pile of infantry. The Bloodweavers coralled the enemy troops into the middle, a good defensive Feat let them deliver on one side at least, and as long as there's a mini-feat up, you only need two Ravagers to kill swathes of dudes.