Salt City Gladiator Games Event Overview

I had the opportunity to play in a local Masters event at a smaller, growing gaming convention in Salt Lake City, the Salt City Gladiator Games. 

It has been a little while since I've hit an event, about six months at this point, and felt a bit out of practice but... luckily Protectorate is a pretty fun faction to be playing right now, with such a wide variety of options and I was excited to get out there. I've been working on an Amon/Thyra pairing for a little bit, and this was the first event I was able to get it to. The two lists are: 

High Allegiant Amon Ad-Raza (Creator's Might)
-Indictor
-Templar x2
-Reckoner x2
-Dervish
-Devout
The Covenant of Menoth
min Choir x2
Vassal x2
Mechanik
Wrack x2

Thyra, Flame of Sorrow (Guardians of the Temple)
-Blood of Martyrs
-Sanctifier
-Dervish
Temple Flameguard w/CA x2
Flame Bringers
Daughters of the Flame
Nicia
Pyyrhus
Eilish Garrity
Wrack
min Choir

This essentially acts as a Question/Answer pair; Amon typically does play more flexibly with a handful of Dervishes, but I wanted a seriously tough brick of metal to chew through and Dervishes don't really lend to that, and went with triple shield 'jack instead. Thyra is just an extremely flexible list with a ton of options turn by turn. Very little shooting between the two lists, but they're pretty resistant to guns and can deliver themselves well. 

I won't be doing full battle reports, unfortunately, between a bit of dehydration fatigue and a tight clock in one round, I was really bad about pictures and frankly don't remember a bunch of aspects of the games. That said, I want to go over them a bit in general. 

Round 1: 

Round 1 I was paired into a player from Salt Lake who I typically don't see until late into events, and is definitely the person I concern myself most when doing an event in the city. So... we're hitting the ground running. His pairing was Stryker1 Heavy Metal with two colossals and Stryker2 Storm Division. Thyra has basically no chance of getting through the double colossals, so I drop Amon and he goes with Stryker2. 

This game was a mess on my part. There was some really huge obstructions on this table (I should have known he wasn't running double colossal for exactly that reason, I need to get back into the swing of thinking properly for events) which I could have used to an extreme advantage to reduce the mobility of his Storm Lances, but just... didn't. I also could have positioned better to keep the cavalry from wrapping my 'jacks up to keep Enliven on the field. On top of that, my opponent's damage rolls were vicious and I had some seriously bad luck (mixed with poor play). Luckily, he got a bit aggressive with Overload on Stryker and I was able to catch him out and kill him. This game didn't feel great, it wasn't a good start to the day, but... we're through to round 2. 

Round 2: 

The second round I got dropped into the Trollbloods opponent I'd been practicing against earlier in the week. There's not a ton to say about this one, to be honest; we knew this matchup was seriously bad for him going in, he knew exactly who I was going to play and it didn't matter which list he chose it was going to be bad. This is the third time we've played Amon vs. Horgle a:nd Horgle just can not hold up. To make matters worse, he got a bit laser focused on avoiding my Indictor's threat range and sort of forgot about the rest of my army, which lead to his Mountain King standing just barely outside the Indictor's threat range... but in range of two reckoners, a templar, the devout, and the dervish. Not a good place to be. Didn't even need the second Reckoner, who charged Mulg and nearly killed him. In the end, I'd lost my Dervish, nearly lost my Reckoner, and I'd lost a bit of support but he had no damage output left to handle the ARM 23 Indictor and all the other 'jacks coming up the field. 

Round 3: 

Round 3 was an opponent I had never played, he lives a good ways north of me and we've both been at events a few times but never quite crossed paths. He was running Cryx, with a Scaverous Black Industries and Asphyxious2 Dark Host list. Amon would have been pretty rough on his Scaverous list, with the enormous amount of spell hate and just sheer amount of metal in the list, but Asphyxious probably would have been an issue. However, neither list had enough armor for Thyra to be too concerned and she would tear through the Asphyxious list pretty well (he doesn't love tons of RFP) so I went with her. My opponent dropped Scaverous. 

Tough/Steady TFG are just godlike. They were an absolute menace, tough rules messing up almost every plan my opponent had. However, my inexperience with my own list was a problem, and a couple turns took far longer than they should have. Unfortunately that lead to my death clock running out this round, for the first time in years. That said, I was dominating the table; Blood of Martyrs killed the Deathjack, Snapjaw, and a Reaper in two activations, all under Star Crossed, Erebus had died to a mess of attacks earlier, his whole left side of the table was dead... it was essentially Scaverous and some support against my entire army when my clock ran through. A bit better turn planning and more focus on just clearing the zones and taking scenario probably would have lead to a victory here but... aside from my piloting, the list performed beautifully. 

Round 4: 

More Cygnar! My opponent here was running Haley3/Stryker1 as his pair. Haley3 was in Storm Division with a bunch of Stormblades, Stryker1 was Heavy Metal with a Stormwall, Storm Strider, and a bunch of light 'jacks. Similar to round 1, Stryker1's addition to the pairing forced me into Amon a bit. Game would have been a little rougher into Haley3, but I think still quite playable. He ended up going with Stryker1, so I lucked out. 

So... this gets a bit into how tournaments work. I'm usually very forthcoming with people I play about every aspect of my list; defensive tech I have, surprising things that might get them, etc. I went first and had Fortify on my Indictor, and had packed him, one Templar, and the Devout up in front of Amon. Amon was just barely behind the Templar. My opponent asked if a 5" template hitting the Templar would hit Amon, which I confirmed. He asked if the Book had run, which it had. He executed plan 'shoot at Amon a bunch while he's knocked down' and had his Lancer run to get range on the Templar, then shot an Earthquake into it. The AOE connected with the Templar, Indictor, and Amon.... but the Templar was base to base with the Indictor, giving it Steady through Fortify, and of course Amon himself has innate steady. 

This is kind of an unfortunate thing with tournaments, and it's kind of against my nature to keep quiet about defensive tech when not asked directly, but is what it is. Thing is, it also had basically no effect on the game aside from the Lancer being exposed; Stryker had nothing else to do with his focus that turn really aside from maybe shoot an AOE out and put some damage on something but he was really going for the KD assassination out of opportunity... but my opponent got a bit flustered and popped his feat, and the Stormwall moved up and shot at my Templar a bit. I think the Storm Strider ran (Strangeways had let the Stormwall shoot at my 'jacks, who all had Passage, but the Strider had no such luck.) Thing is, at the point that he feated, the only thing in my range was his lancer; he'd feated in his frustration but hadn't really gained anything out of it. I went into the Lancer anyway, just throwing most of my army into the Stormwall's charge range and putting Enliven on a couple key heavies because frankly it just wasn't going to kill enough anyway, even if I went into its threat. His next couple turns were basically spent trying to disrupt my 'jacks and get an assassination angle on Amon while everything around him exploded; in the end he was down to Stryker and some support against... every 'jack in my army with no broken systems. That said, my support was eliminated down to a wrack and one choir member so... that was some work done. Rough game for my opponent. 

Conclusion

I wish I had played better round 1, I wish I had played faster round 3. That said, this pair has an enormous amount of options; Thyra in Guardians just has a crazy amount of utility and options turn by turn and plays scenario extremely well, and this Amon list, against the grain of the usual 3-5 (or more) Dervish builds, has performed absolutely beautifully. 

Couple notable things: the Indictor was an absolute monster. This hasn't been a well loved 'jack in Protectorate, and is definitely one I haven't seen around much, but his inclusion into this Amon build was one of the best things I could have done for the list. Adding a Blessed option into the mix is fantastic for a caster with no upkeep outs, Sacred Ward means with Passage and Fortify he's basically impossible to move out of zones or really just do anything about, and the anti-spell aura has come up consistently as he's pushed further and further up the table. I may eventually try some builds running double Indictor, although admittedly his speed is a concern and I do like having him in with a bunch of 'jacks that threaten a bit further than he does. 

Blood of Martyrs was a terror in the game against Scaverous; taking DJ, the Reaper, and Snapjaw off the table in two activations, all while under star crossed, all while Scaverous is forcing rerolls on things with souls, at MAT 11 PS 22 it's just hard to care. 

Overall, was a good event! I placed second overall, and the other Protectorate player was somewhere in the top 8 (I never saw the full standings, I think he was fourth or fifth.) A bit of better play and I'd have been into the finals against Ghost Fleet... maybe I dodged a bullet? 

I wish I could have taken better pictures and whatnot but it just didn't play out that way, but at the very least, that's my general overview of the how my rounds went. Thanks for reading!