Battle Report 149 - Bellingham Masters Round 3: The Child (Menagerie) vs. Kaelyssa (Defenders)

Prologue:

Round three enough people had dropped that I was one of the two undefeated players. My opponent for this round was not playing Grymkin! Unfortunately, he was playing Ret, and he had both Kaelyssa and Issyria. 

Looking back, this might have been a better Heretic drop, but I wanted to be able to score the Scenario (it was Recon II) and so I dropped the Child. 

My opponent picked Kaelyssa, and I picked the Sacrifice and Pandemonium Arcana in addition to the Child's Trump of Wrath. 

I opted to ADR out my unit of Dread Rots and put in another pair of Crabbits. Unfortunately my opponent won the roll (disastrous against double Advanced Moving Halberdiers) and chose to go first. Naturally I gave him the side with the crummiest terrain possible. 

Kaelyssa
- Hydra
- Hydra

Arcantrik Force Generator
Arcantrik Force Generator

Arcanist
Arcanist
Houseguard Thane
Houseguard Thane
Fane Knight Issyan

Houseguard Halberdiers
- CA
- Soulless
Houseguard Halberdiers
- CA
- Soulless

The Child
- Skin and Moans
- Skin and Moans
- Skin and Moans
- Cage Rager
- Rattler
- Gorehound
- Crabbit x2
- Crabbit x2
- Crabbit

Death Knell

Karianna Rose
Gremlin Swarm
Gremlin Swarm
Gremlin Swarm
Gremlin Swarm

 
 

Retribution turn 1:

After advance moving his Halbs, the entire army runs at me. Kaelyssa puts Refuge on the right hand AFG. 

Note how he has carefully marked my threat ranges and is staying behind them because he could have run a few more inches if he wanted to.

 
 

Grymkin turn 1:

I'm gong to get charged, but I have Pandemonium so I don't think it will be too bad. I can't do anything about his threat ranges without losing on Scenario, so I don't bother and just move things up the table with Crabbits behind to Shield Guard shots away from things I care about. 

The Child has Tantrum and Silence of Death up.

 
 

Retribution turn 2:

The Shooting begins, but Crabbits keep me pretty safe. 

At a certain point, Kaelyssa moves up and Feats, and then another shot goes into one of my Crabbits. 

I take a quick measurement, and Kaelyssa is within 14 inches of one of my Skin and Moans. I have one critical piece of information wrong here, and it leads me to make a poor decision. I thought that Field Marshal [Pain Response] only let you run and charge for free. In fact, it lets you also make power attacks for free. As a result, I trigger Wrath instead of waiting for Pandemonium. 

This instantly bites me in the butt as his left unit of Halbs can get five guys into the Death Knell. I counter charge the first with the Child and kill it, and then the two mini-feated 2 man CMAs take out my Death Knell. 

His other unit comes in and beats on my Skin and Moans pretty hard and then repositions to max melee. 

 
 

Grymkin turn 2:

The loss of my Death Knell is a massive problem, and only the assassination threat I have open keeps me from tilting. 

I trigger Tantrum on my Skin and Moans, and also give it pathfinder from Fuel Cache. 

I am able to clear all the Halbs around it off, Abuse it, Heal it, and then have it trample up to Kaelyssa, for free as I'd just read the Field Marshal. 

I buy and boost an attack, needing nines and dice plus six. Damage is good, and she's on four. I buy and boost again, and miss. I buy and miss. I move my Gremlin Swarm to control my flag, I run another to contest both the zone and his flag, and that's the turn. 

 
 

Score: 1 - 0
Advantage Grymkin

Retribution turn 3:

HIs right hand Hydra kills off the Skin and Moans. He shoots the painted one in the zone with his AFG, and then again. I shield guard that shot, and then shield guard it from the first Crabbit to a nearly dead Crabbit and trigger Sacrifice to heal the Skin and Moans back to full. 

His remaining attacks on it, including a few boosted ones from Kaelyssa and one from the Hydra leave it on 17 boxes. 

Issyan charges in at dice off three and kills it in a single hit. 

His AFG kills the Gremlin Swarm engaging it and his Halbs back away from my Rattler. 

He scores three to my none. 

 
 

Score: 1 - 3
Advantage Retribution

Grymkin turn 3:

I have to target prioritize like mad here. The Skin and Moans gets to tantrum up, killing the Soulless, and then gets Pathfinder from the objective.

With Enrage, it gets to trample up to the Hydra and kill it. The Child murders Issyan and my Gorehound kills the Standard bearer and sprints up.

I put one Crabbit close to my Skin and Moans and have both in range of the Child. 

I contest his zone and score my flag as he scores his. 

 
 

Score: 2 - 4
Advantage Retribution

Retribution turn 4:

My opponent decides to go for Assassination, but Kaelyssa misses an attack on the Child so I don't have to lose a Fury. She Refuges behind the AFG. The Hydra then misses a boosted attack on the Skin and Moans, so it lives through the AFG. 

The left hand AFG takes huge damage chunks out of the Rager, and his Halbs come in to jam. 

We both score again.

 
 

Score: 3 - 5
Advantage Retribution

Grymkin turn 4:

My Skin and Moans gets to Tantrum, and so it kills off the Houseguard Thane on itself. 

We measure, and I'm a half inch shy of getting to Kaelyssa with him, and so it kills the AFG. 

The Child moves up and murders the Arcanist Mechani. 

My Rattler is way out of control, but it clears all the Halbs on the Cage Rager and gets back behind the forest. 

My Cage Rager moves up behind the house and uses its corpse tokens to heal 5 damage or so. 

I score two to his one. 

 
 

Score: 5 - 6
Advantage Retribution

Retribution turn 5:

My opponent decides to go for assassination again here, which is looking like his only real out at this point. Kaelyssa is on four boxes, is already toeing the killbox, and he cannot leverage his other AFG since it can't move over the flag and still have range and Line of Sight to any of my models. 

Kaelyssa scratches the Child up for a couple damage, leaving me with a transfer left. The Hydra charges in to contest and we both score again after the AFG nearly kills the Cage Rager. 

 
 

Score: 6 - 7
Advantage Retribution

Grymkin turn 5:

Enrage on the Skin and Moans and it walks up to Kaelyssa and murders her. 

If that hadn't have worked, the Child was right behind waiting to come seal the game. 

 
 

Victory for the Grymkin!

Post-Game Thoughts:

What a scary list that Ret list is. I absolutely think Retribution is one of the factions that people are not prepared to face right now. It has a ton of strong casters, excellent infantry, jacks, and a monstrous battle engine. 

As for this game, I think (I hope) that I did not communicate at the time how hard I was working to stay off tilt. I am very happy with my ability to fight through the severely swingy early times and grind down the game until I had an advantage. 

My opponent and I tossed around a couple of ideas for having Kaelyssa simply run away that last turn, but I think if he does that then I get to take a solid scenario lead over a short period of time as I clear my zone repeatedly and kill his objective. This is all theory machine of course, so I do not know how the game would have played out had that been the line of play. 

I was absurdly grateful that I had ADRed in my Crabbits. Two extra Crabbits sticking around made me very confidant in my ability to play the Child extremely far forward once the right hand Hydra was down, since I could Shield Guard nearly half  of my opponents shots at that point.

Aaron was a great opponent, and I'm looking forward to seeing him (and both of my earlier opponents) at Attack X this next weekend where I will be playing...something! Who knows?! 

Thanks for reading!