For round 2, I was paired with a gentleman named Adam. I've seen him at many events before this, but this was our first introduction.
He had Helynna with a pile of Warjacks out of theme and Rahn in forges. Into both of these, I felt like Borka was a better drop. The battlegroup heavy Helynna list wouldn't like trying to play into my feat and Rahn doesn't like a caster that can selectively be immune to KD, drags, and placements and is also really, really hard to kill.
Adam picked Rahn, and I won the roll off for this game and opted to go first. Adam took the side which did NOT have the sweltering window blazing onto his back and away we went!
House Shyeel Artificer
- Northkin Elder
His theme benefits let him start with Polarity Shield on the Helios, and I opted to ambush both units of Battle Bears.
Trolls turn 1:
He has some pretty spectacular threat ranges in that list. The Helios can trample 8 and tractor beam a model around from 12 inches away. His Battle Mages threaten 18 inches under Rahn's feat, and they hit really hard.
Fortunately for me, I had ambushing Bears to force the engagement, and I felt like I could bait out his feat with two units of Fire Eaters. Adam later told me he would have feated for one unit, which just demonstrates how powerful these units are.
I ran both units up in a clump to bait out Force Blasts, although one unit got to be on a hill and with concealment to be DEF 17.
The Earthborn and Borka both put up Earth's Blessing, which I knew would be key to this matchup.
Retribution turn 1:
Adam went for it, and after both of his Arc Nodes ran up, he threw a Chain Blast into the unit of Fire Eaters on the hill on my right. It missed and scattered harmlessly.
His second Chain Blast also missed, leaving the Fire Eaters untouched.
On the left, his Battle Mages successfully killed all three Fire Eaters, but had to get pretty close to his table edge to do so. On the right, he had less success as many of them were outside of Rahn's feat. He did block a charge line to the Hydra with one Battle Mage though.
He killed a couple Raiders with Battle Mages and forced tough on another.
Trollbloods turn 2:
After having weathered his feat almost completely intact, I felt pretty good about my chances. I ambushed a unit of Bears on both sides.
I had a nice easy charge lane onto the Chimera with multiple Raiders under stone, but I whiffed damage on many of them and failed to kill it.
Bears on the left killed four of six Battle Mages. Bears on the right waited for Fire Eaters to try and get the Battle Mage out of the way, but I missed the unboosted nine and only got one Bear into the Hydra. I did kill three Battle Mages though.
I moved Borka up and Feated with Earth's Blessing up, and then moved the Earthborn up behind the forest and also put up Earth's Blessing.
Valka took over the snow shroud on the hill, within five inches of the back Fire Eater to trigger Righteous Vengeance.
Retribution turn 2:
There were two things that I really needed to happen this game. First, I needed to survive Rahn's feat. Second, I needed to kill Helios without losing too much on my side.
I had left Adam a charge onto a Raider with Helios, who could then attack the Earthborn with three attacks.
Adam went for it, and left the Earthborn on life support.
The Chimera whacked a Raider and went stationary, and on the right side of the board, he killed off my Raiders and Bears. I got to counter-charge Valka at..something after all of that had happened, but I was contesting with him in the first place so his exact placement wasn't hugely important.
Rahn ran away from my Bears on the left, and his Battle Mages tried, in vain, to kill them.
Sylyss put on his hero pants and charged and kill the wounded Bear.
We scored nothing, and the clock went to me.
Trollbloods turn 3:
The Stone popped for Strength, and Raiders slaughtered the poor Chimera. Quickwork let one of them kill Sylyss as well, and the Bears finished off the Battle Mages.
The Earthborn got healed up from Borka and Raged as well. Valka charged into the Helios back arc and whiffed both damage rolls really badly. The Earthborn walked up and left the Colossal on about 18 boxes. I contested the right zone with a Bear Handler and scored a point.
Score: 1 - 0
Retribution turn 3:
It takes a lot of resources to kill Valka, but he eventually dies, as does every other contesting model in the central zone. Helios puts up the Repulser Field, and Adam contests my zone with a Mechanik.
His models on the right move over to the middle of the table, and Adam scores two points.
Score: 1 - 2
Trollbloods turn 4:
Helios' facing means that I can charge him with a bunch of stuff this turn, so the stone pops Strength and three Raiders and a Bear get into Helios. They kill him dead, so Borka moves up and sprays down the Artificer to clear the central zone.
I score two points to one here for an even game.
Score: 3 - 3
Retribution turn 4:
I've left the Mauler too far from the Phoenix for Adam to get a charge into him, so he settles for moving the Phoenix up and Telekinising him around and backwards into the forest. He makes a wall of dudes between our zones and says go as we both score one.
Score: 4 - 4
Trollbloods turn 5:
Fortunately for me, Borka has pathfinder and hits just as hard as Mauler. A free Pyre animus on Bearka and the Krielstone makes him MAT 8 PS 19, and he thrashes the Phoenix with two transfers left. He repositions backwards.
Raiders move up and shoot down the Mechaniks in the zone, and I can run a Bear Handler to contest his zone.
I'm scoring one to nothing here.
Score: 6 - 4
Retribution turn 5:
Adam needs to try and kill Borka here, so he charges my Bear Handler with Rahn and casts Force Hammer at my caster. I take something like 3 damage and get stronger from it.
His Battle Mages pull Borka closer to the Hydra, but the Hydra doesn't hit very hard and after all of it's attacks, I haven't transferred and I've taken about 8 damage. Adam opts to call it here, as I can easily kill the rest of the models in his army and score three points to win on Scenario next turn.
Victory for the Trolls!
This was a very strange game. Both Adam and I had dice go super cold on us several times here, and both of our armies ended way more spread out than I think we expected.
In the end, I think the overwhelming amount of Pathfinder in my army gave me the edge here, as the water feature in the middle of the table forced Adam to spread out instead of centralizing his threats, and this let me use my ambushing bears to good effect and also take over one side of the table.
I was really impressed with the Northkin Raiders this game. Quickwork came up several times, allowing me to get shots into the backline that Adam wasn't expecting, and under Northkin Stone they hit at PS 13 which is nothing to sneeze at.
Ret is a really scary faction, I'm very excited to see what their CID does for them. Even with Earth's Blessing and a very tanky caster, I was constantly afraid of getting Borka killed until the Helios died.
On to round three!