Battle Report 168 - WMW Champions Round 1: The Dreamer (Menagerie) vs. The Heretic (Bump)

I did not realize coming into Warmachine Weekend already qualified for the invitational that the Champions event was going to be a gigantic shark tank. 

Tim Banky, Jason Watt, Jay Larson, Charles Soong - these and many other WTC level players were present and raring to go. 

Bret was originally going to watch and maybe play a scramble, since he had only brought his invitational lists, neither of which were on ADR for Minions. 

At my urging, we cobbled together two Grymkin pairs that used neither of the same models from my collection, and registered us both. We even ran back to the hotel so that I could paint up a borrowed Trapperkin for his lists in the 30 minutes we had to spare. 

Naturally, we ended up playing round one. 

He had the Heretic (his good list) and the King of Leftovers (his very bad list), and I was playing the Dreamer and Child. I knew he was dropping Heretic, and I also knew that I had to play Dreamer since my Child list didn't have a Rattler in it. 

The Heretic
- Cage Rager
- Frightmare
- Gorehound

Witchwood
Lord Longfellow
Eilish Garrity
Trapperkin

Hollowmen
- CA
Hollowmen
- CA
Dread Rots
Dread Rots
Mad Caps
Mad Caps
Twilight Sisters

The Dreamer
- Phantasms
- Skin and Moans
- Skin and Moans
- Cage Rager
- Cage Rager
- Rattler
- Frightmare
- Crabbit
- Crabbit
- Crabbit

Death Knell

Gremlin Swarm
Gremlin Swarm
Gremlin Swarm
Gremlin Swarm
Eilish Garrity
Karianna Rose

It's been a week and change, but I believe that I took the Pandemonium and Sacrifice Arcana, and Bret took the Ruin and Fortune's Path Arcana. 

I won the roll off and opted to go first. 

 
 

The Dreamer turn 1:

Everything runs up. I put Mirage on my Rattler and apparently thought it would be fun to cast an Artifice of Deviation for no reason. Ah well. 

 
 

The Heretic turn 1:

His army similarly runs at me, with some apparitioning Hollowmen and spawned Cask Imps for good measure. 

Side Note: Bret made an absurd number of Cask Imps this game. 

The Heretic stuck Fury on the right hand unit of Dread Rots and put down a Wall of Fire in front of my Rattler as a deterrent. 

 
 

The Dreamer turn 2:

That Wall of Fire turned out to be less of a deterrent than either of us had thought. Between Enrage, Manifest Destiny, and some awesome overtaking action, my Rattler killed a Mad Cap unit, a Witchwood, and over half of a unit of Dread Rots and Hollowmen. 

Woot!

Everything else I have shuffled up and I stuck an Artifice of Deviation down to keep myself from getting charged by anything. 

I also put a Gremlin Swarm on a flag in case Bret decided not to contest. 

 
 

The Heretic turn 2:

My Rattler dies, but it takes a lot of work for that to happen. 

Bret advances into the zone and takes a shot at my left Gremlin Swarm, which gets Shield Guarded. 

He spawns a Cask Imp on his flag, and contests mine with another. 

The Twilight Sisters make some Dread Rots. I can't really afford to let the game go long because of this. 

He scores a point.

 
 

Score: 0 - 1
Advantage Heretic

The Dreamer turn 3:

I was feeling really good about the game last turn, but suddenly I'm not so sure that I'm ahead in this game. I send a Cage Rager in that can only get charged by about three Dread Rots, and I clear my flag, spawn a mouse, and have that mouse go contest. 

I put the Frightmare in the right zone and kill the Lantern Man with him (important). 

I score and Bret does not. 

 
 

Score: 2 - 0
Tie!

The Heretic turn 3:

As expected, he comes at me. Three Dread Rots bounce off my Cage Rager, and some really good dice let him kill Eilish through a Shield Guard with two single Hollowmen shots. 

I believe he fails to contest my flag by a small fraction of an inch here, so we both score again. 

 
 

Score: 2 - 2
Tie!

The Dreamer turn 4:

I think this is a flex point. I still have Pandemonium, so I can make one of his Dread Rots into something that's very unlikely to kill (or reach) a heavy. 

I decide to push on the left side, clearing off my Cage Rager with stuff, charging it to contest his flag (he triggers Reckoning here), and then charging my left side Skin and Moans into his Dread Rots to kill as many as possible. 

The Dreamer moves up to get the other Dread Rots in control, and I position my other beasts to come in and clean up the mess. 

I score again. 

 
 

Score: 3 - 2
Advantage Dreamer

The Heretic turn 4:

As Bret said, "Let's get Pandemonium out of the way."

His right unit of Rots tries to charge and I cancel the order. The Heretic gets Fury on himself and charges the Cage Rager, putting it down with all but one Fury, and casts Lightning Strike to get back out of my central Skin and Moans' threat range. 

He gets a pair of Dread Rots into my other Skin and Moans, and then his Cage Rager comes in, but it's dice off 2 and he misses one of his fives to hit, leaving the Skin and Moans alive. 

We both score. 

 
 

Score: 4 - 3
Advantage Dreamer

The Dreamer turn 5:

I wasn't expecting to have a Skin and Moans alive, and since it had Mirage on it, it apparates away from the Cage Rager. 

I move the Dreamer up, Stationary the Heretic, heal the Skin and Moans, and cast Manifest Destiny. 

My remaining Cage Rager tramples up and kills the Mad Cap, which explodes nowhere. 

The now free Skin and Moans charges the Stationary Heretic and puts him down. 

 
 

Victory for the Dreamer!

Post-Game Thoughts:

It sucked to play against Bret round 1 - it never fails, you go to an event somewhere and you play your buddy round 1. 

It especially sucked since our brilliant plan was for both of us to lose round one, drop, and go see Thor: Ragnarok. 

Ah well, on to round 2!