Battle Report 62: Las Vegas Open Invitational Round 2 - Wurmwood vs. Stryker 1


Round two, guaranteed top 8, and another really hard matchup.

Julien is another one of those incredible Warmachine players from Texas (why are there so darn many?) and he was playing a really nasty pair - Haley 2 in theme and a Stryker 1 list in a theme that he called "Janky Crap".

We were playing Take and Hold, and I figured Wurmwood was probably the right play into both of his lists (so many eLeaps), and was delighted when he dropped Stryker instead of Haley. Haley is a scary lady, and while Stryker does have a time walk feat, it's a manageable game if I can make him do that on my feat turn.

Stryker 1
- Reinholdt
- Stormwall
- Firefly

Alain Runewood
- Dynamo
Strangeways
Laddermore

Max Storm Lances


And my Wurmwood list, for those of you who haven't read the last few reports:

Wurmwood
- Cassius
- Megalith
- Pureblood
- Woldwyrd x3

Gallows Grove
Lanyssa

Shifting Stones x2
Sentry Stones x2
Min Bonegrinders
Gatormen Bokur and Shamblers


I won the roll off, and since we were playing Take and Hold, I windmill slammed going second on side with a reasonable chance to build forest walls in.


I made a massive mistake on deployment here - I put Cassius on the wrong side of the table. I was intending to use him to kill a Shambler turn 1 and complete my LOS denial, but then I randomly was like "nah, he's good on this side instead.

Derp.

Cygnar turn 1:

This is a pretty standard turn. Arcane Shield goes on the Stormlances, Snipe goes on the Stormwall.

Things durdle on up. Julien does quite a bit of premeasuring for his next turn with Reinholdt and Stryker here, so I have no illusions that one of my Sentry Stones is dying no matter what I do.


Circle turn 1:

I'd realized my deployment mistake the second I clocked back over to Julien, and now I was going to pay for it.

I build a forest wall as best I can, and then use the forest on my left to give Lanyssa and my Grove stealth, as well as to hide my Woldwyrd in but still within striking range of the hill.

Everything else advances up onto the hill to make it problematic for lances to hit things.


Cygnar turn 2:

What I'm expecting is a feat and jam play, but what happens instead is a turn of shooting. I somehow don't have a picture for this turn though.

Stryker drops Snipe and upkeeps Arcane Shield.

He re-casts Snipe on Dynamo, and then moves over behind the Firefly.

Reinholdt moves up and strips Stealth off a Sentry Stone, and the Stormwall blasts it to death and puts down covering fire.

The Stormlances back off slightly to stay out of range of things.

Dynamo gets the +2 to hit from Jack Marshal, and murders the Bokur and a few Shamblers.

Circle turn 2:

I craft Wurmwood a talisman, and then port him up on the hill.

Cassius runs to make sure Wurmwood can Dark Path back to the flag.

My two right hand Woldwyrds nearly kill the Firefly, but keep missing those sevens to hit.

Megalith durdles up in charge range of the Stormwall, for next turn, and casts Stranglehold at the Firefly.

Wurmwood activates, Strangleholds the Stormwall and then casts Curse of Shadows on Dynamo before porting back to Cassius and popping his Feat.

This is a nice little break. I finish things off by moving the Woldwyrd on the left up and casually killing Dynamo in two shots. Yeah.....

All of a sudden I felt really, really good about the game.

Lanyssa moves up and casts Winter Storm at max command, catching just the Stormwall.

I score one point.

Score 1-0
Advantage Circle

 Cygnar turn 3:

Julien is in a bit of a spot here. Dynamo wasn't supposed to die like that (although the math says he does only live through a Woldwyrd shooting him with three boxes), and I've been much more aggressive on Scenario than I think he was expecting.

He allocates nothing and upkeeps Arcane Shield. 

It's Feat turn. Stryker moves over and pops his Feat.

Stormwall moves to contest the flag on the left, and the Stormlances get pathfinder from Alain before walking up, killing some dudes, and then repositioning into the flag.

Laddermore runs to get inside the feat.


Score 1-0
Advantage Circle

Circle turn 3:

Time to try and murder everything?

Wurmwood goes first and casts Curse of Shadows at the Stormlances, and then puts Wraithbane on both Woldwyrds.

Between two Woldywrds and the Pureblood spraying, I kill off three Stormlances.

Cassius runs away so Wurmwood has somewhere to go if things get rough.

I look at the table and decide I need to sacrifice Megalith to the Stormwall this turn.

If I can force him to turn the Stormwall to the left, he won't be able to shoot as effectively when I inevitably start Strangleholding him every turn. Also, with Weight of Stone, the Stormwall becomes speed 2, and won't be able to contest the important flag.

I run lots of guys around the flag on the left, and the Woldwyrd over there takes 5 out of Arlan's 8 health.

I port one unit of stones up so they are within healing field range of Woldwyrds, and I port the other unit out to make it impossible for the Stormwall to trample and land near Wurmwood.

I score again.

Score 2-0
Advantage Circle

 Cygnar turn 4:

He can't ignore Megalith, so the Stormwall gets a focus, and Arcane Shield stays up.

Lances charge in and fail to kill anything, but do knock out a few systems.

Runewood charges and kills my Sentry Stone.

Arlan gives the Stormwall a focus, and the Stormwall misses one attack, leaving Megalith on one. Stryker moves up and kills Megalith, and Julien passes the turn.


Score 2-0
Advantage Circle


 Circle turn 4:

I upkeep Curse of Shadows and go to ten fury.

Stormlances die to Woldwyrds, but I can't dismount Laddermore without committing the Pureblood, who fails to kill her dismount. At least she's not contesting.

I get Curse of Shadows on the Stormwall, and charging Shamblers do about twenty damage to it. Nice!

The remaining Bone Grinder charges and kills Runewood, and I use the far side Woldwyrd to kill off Arlan so the Stormwall can't be repaired.

I port the Shifting Stones around the Pureblood and Wurmwood, in easy range to leach fury and then either heal or teleport.

I score another point.



Score 3-0
Advantage Circle

Cygnar turn 5:

The grind continues.

The Stormwall kills all of the Shamblers easily. Stryker moves up and nearly kills the Woldwyrd, but decides to camp a couple of focus in case I get cheeky and try a spell assassination.

Laddermore walks up and pokes a Woldwyrd, but doesn't cripple anything.



Score 3-0
Advantage Circle

Circle turn 5:

I upkeep Curse of Shadows and use the Woldywrd engaging Laddermore to put her down.

The other one boosts some damage shots into the Stormwall, doing something like 10 more damage.

The Pureblood gets ported into the Stormwalls back arc and Warps Strength. The Stormwall has about 25 boxes left, and the Pureblood easily takes it down.

I score another point, and Julien calls the game.


Victory for the Druids!


Post-Game Thoughts:

What a grind. This game really showcased the power of Woldwyrds. Between them, they killed an entire unit of Stormlances, Dynamo, Arlan, and 1/3 of a Stormwall. Not bad at all!

Julien and I talked about the game at length afterwards, and basically we decided that upkeeping Arcane Shield on his feat turn was the wrong play. Without Purgation, the Woldwyrds are much less likely to kill them, and I can ignore it with Wraithbane anyway. 

This was another excellent, excellent game. Julien was a great opponent, and really pushed both me and my list to the edge of what I could handle. 

On to round three!

Battle Report 60: Las Vegas Open Round 4 - Wurmwood vs. MacBain

Prologue:

Well one of the things you really don't want to have happen at a big tournament like this, after 6-7 hours of straight Warmachine is to run smack dab into a faction you have only played against 2-3 times before. 

Well...that would be Mercs for me. I've played or played against every other faction in the game a TON, but this one...nope. 

I didn't quite get what my opponents' lists were supposed to do, but they both had dudes in them and I figured Hellmouth would solve all of my problems that Sentry Stones couldn't. 

Oh how wrong was I. 

My opponent dropped MacBain, and once I started seeing how the puzzle pieces fit together, I started to get very, very scared. Add to that the fact that we are playing Linebreaker, not a Scenario I can just win, and I knew this was going to be close. 

The only saving grace was the Woldwyrds - if I hadn't have had them, he could have played his army with all the tricks online, and I don't know if I could have beaten that. 

MacBain
- Madelyn Corbeau
- Mangler
- Rover

Dahlia
- Skareth

Orin
Ragman
Rhupert
Eiryss 2
Lanyssa Ryssyl

Min Boomhowlers
Kayazy with CA

vs. 

Wurmwood
- Cassius
- Megalith
- Brennos
- Woldwyrd x3

Blackclad
Gallows Grove

Shifting Stones x2
Sentry Stones x2
Min Bone Grinders
Gatorman Bokur and Shamblers


So why was I so screwed? Let's look at a couple of things. 

Boomhowler: Cacophony is a gross ability, and Wurmwood relies on spells SO much that it's almost impossible to ignore this guy. Couple that with...

Orin: Who also seriously messes with spells, and I'm in real trouble. 

But Jaden, I hear you say, you have lots of shooting, shouldn't that be a non-issue?

Well....no, because MacBain has Countermeasures which prevents models from making ranged attacks within 5 inches of whatever has the spell on it. Kayazy have Stealth, so shooting at them from farther than 5 inches in my list means Wurmwood casting spells, which Orin can negate. 

All of this is still okay until you add in MacBain's feat, which quite simply says "Unless you have Grievous Wounds or some other way to prevent healing, you cannot kill d6+5 warrior models for a turn". Note how it's not non-character models. 

Yeah I had no idea how screwed I was. 

Also I lost the roll, so I had to go second and pick side. 




The game plan is to turtle around the forest and obstacle on the table and then slowly win an attrition war with the Bokur. I can probably pick off Dahlia at some point with Woldwyrds, and I can throw enough Strangleholds to eventually burn through Orin. 

Mercs turn 1:

Countermeasures goes up on the Kayazy, and everything runs at me. 

He puts Eiryss and Lanyssa on the side to contest, and basically starts shoving his army at me. 


Circle turn 1:

I've started to get a feeling for how screwed I am now, and I'm scared. I play this turn pretty well, making a massive forest wall and turtling BUT....

Look at that Gallows Grove....way off in no man's land being useless. If he was central on the hill, I would have had a way easier next turn since I could have actually dealt with his feat. Alas, experience. 



Mercs turn 2:

He upkeeps Countermeasures and just shoves his army down my throat, popping Feat to keep 6 Kayazy, Boomhowler, and Orin alive, and all outside of the ten inch "threat" of my tree.

Boomhowler screams Cacophony and catches Wurmwood inside it (EEK!).

He is also able to kill a Sentry Stone between Skareth and the Shield jack...who apparently has a gun? 




Circle turn 2:

Time for desperate measures? 

He lets me land a Stranglehold on the non-chain weapon jack, and I port Wurmwood out of the Cacophony bubble. 

Cassius runs, the remaining Bone Grinder Crafts Talisman, Wurmwood casts Dark Path and gets over by Cassius.

A boosted Stranglehold takes Eiryss down, and I pop feat. I run a Woldwyrd to control the flag and snag a point. 


Score 1-0
Advantage Circle

Mers turn 3:

My opponent is a bit taken aback, but decides that he can run his jack, move MacBain up, and cast Jackhammer a few times to try and kill the tree. He can also move Boomhowler and Orin over to catch me in Cacophany again. Sighhhhh.

He drops Countermeasures to do more Jackhammer attacks.

He does this, and I transfer a lot of damage before MacBain decides to camp two.

He contests the flag with Rhupert, and kills a bunch of Shamblers with Kayazy.

Skareth tries in vain to kill the far right Woldwyrd.



Score 1-0
Advantage Circle

Circle turn 3:

I can finally kill things again. I place a Mannikin base to base with Orin and start things off by murdering him. 

I then use a Woldwyrd to kill Boomhowler, and the Shamblers eat through a TON of guys, leaving the Bokur with seven corpses. 

I should have used Wurmwood to kill off Rhupert by casting Hellmouth at Madelyn, but I was panicked from nearly getting assassinated, so instead Cassius runs so a Dark Path gets Wurmwood into the Stones. 

The Woldwyrd boosts shots at Rhupert but misses horribly. 

Wurmwood casts Stranglehold on the Chain Jack, and gets out. The Stones then port him way back. 

Brennos and Megalith both cast spells at the shield jack in the middle, leaving him on a bare handful of boxes and basically unable to do anything. 

I put Shifting Stones between Megs and Skareth just in case. 


The base with the Souls on it at the bottom is Wurmwood.
Score 1-0
Advantage Circle
 Mercs turn 4:

My opponent is on the back foot now, and I can feel the game starting to slowly swing my way.

The Strangleheld chain jack goes in and kills the Sentry Stone with Jackhammer.

Kayazy charge Brennos and beat him up pretty badly, and Skareth finishes off a Woldwyrd.

Madelyn and Rhupert switch spots.


Score 1-0
Advantage Circle

Circle turn 4:

Alright, I finally am starting to feel like I can win this game. Shamblers do more work, freeing up Brennos. 

Cassius runs, and Wurmwood casts Curse of Shadows on the Chain Jack. 

Megalith finishes off the other jack with a Stranglehold

Brennos kills the Chain Jack. 

The poor Woldwyrd off to the left shoots in vain. 


Score 1-0
Advantage Circle

Mercs turn 5:

MacBain double barrels Brennos off the table, and Skareth shoots the Bokur down with help from Kayazy, and then puts up Counterblast. I don't have a picture for this turn, but it's pretty close to what the next turn picture looks like.



Circle turn 5:

Skareth finally has a thing on him, so the Woldwyrd moves up and casually one rounds the beast. I kill off the rest of the Kayazy. I still can't hit Madelyn or Rhupert.



Score 1-0
Advantage Circle

Mercs turn 6:

My opponent....runs MacBain to the flag. Uh oh. Ragman also runs to my flag, but it's contested from the Gallows Grove.


Score 1-2
Advantage Mercs

Circle turn 5:

I'm in panic mode, but I'm finally able to kill off Madelyn and Rhupert by Dark Pathing Wurmwood up the table and shooting them with a Hellmouth.

I contest the flag with 3 models, thinking MacBain can't clear them all, and Megalith is in range to go after the objective next turn.

The Woldwyrd blasts Ragman to death.


Score 2-2
Tie!
 Mercs turn 6:

Time is down to a couple minutes per side, so I don't have pics from this turn, but MacBain walks over to the Shifting Stone, casts Jackhammer on himself to kill it, and then shoots both Shamblers to death and Energizers back to the flag. I was not expecting this in the slightest, and even though I see a clear path to victory, I'm still a bit in panic mode.

Score 3-4
Advantage Mercenaries

Circle turn 6:

I contest again, kill the objective, and go to five points. What a game!



Post-Game Thoughts:

I have never felt so powerless when playing Wurmwood. The fact that his army was able to completely neutralize mine for several turns was insane!

What was even more shocking is the idea that this list has been ridiculed by Mercenary players on the forums (Rory and I had a long talk about it after this game). I think it has some insane potential, especially since he told me it's tooled as a primarily Circle and Lylyth 3 drop. Countermeasures on models that can't die for a round is brutally good.

I'm very happy with how I played this game (other than the placement of the Gallows Grove, that was unacceptably bad), and I was very excited to qualify for day two, the Invitational!

Those Batreps will be forthcoming, thanks for reading!

Battle Report 59: Las Vegas Open Masters Qualifier Round 3 - Wurmwood vs. Zerkova 2

Prologue:

I have a bit of a curse when it comes to big events - if I lose, it's always round three. I haven't lost in round one or two in years, and whenever I make it to the finals, I nearly always win. Round three though....round three is my weakness.

I got paired with a very nice guy playing Khador. He had a Butcher 3 Jack Spam and a Zerkova 2 list with double Outriders and stuff. We were playing Incursion, and I figured he'd go with Zerkova, so I decided to play Wurmwood.

This may or may not have been out of a desire to trigger Witch Mark as many times as possible with the Woldwyrds.

Zerkova
- Bodyguards
- Sylyss
- Behemoth

Gun Carriage
Gobber Tinker

Greylord Outriders max
Greylord Outriders min
Ayanna and Holt
- Valachev

And my Wurmwood list again:

Wurmwood
- Cassius
- Brennos
- Megalith
- Woldwyrd x3

Blackclad
Gallows Grove

Shifting Stones x2
Sentry Stone x2
Min Bone Grinders
Gatorman Bokur


I lost the roll and got to choose sides, so I picked the one with the big forest.



My game plane was pretty simple. I was gonna use Brennos and Megalith to control Behemoth and the Gun Carriage. Woldwyrds and Sentry Stones would dual with Greylord Cav, and eventually I'd win a side really hard and pop my feat to get 2 points. 

Khador turn 1:

The Gun Carriage trampled up and....killed three Mannikins??? What?? okay then. 

Telegash Mark went up on a Greylord, and Banishing Ward went on the unit of outriders that was on my left. Curses. 

Zerkova and her buddies charged and ran. Behemoth ran. Valachev and friends advanced and Zephyred. 

Outriders on the left respected my Sentry Stone and stayed well back. 


Circle turn 1:

Huh...

The plan is to gum up the left side with a Wild Growth, put all three Woldwyrds into the cover on the right (it's not a hill, it's rubble) and Stranglehold and Ravaging Winds the Gun Carriage.

I place a Mannikin and move it up as a firing beacon for Brennos....but then he countercharges with a Doom Reaver. Whoops....

I get lucky and drift Brennos' AOE onto the Gun Carriage, and I do land the Stranglehold with Megalith after he tramples up.

Forest wall goes up in front of Wurmwood.

I swarm the middle with the Bokur. I also have the Bone Grinders kill each other to fuel the tree and the Gator.



Khador turn 2:

My opponent didn't realize what Brennos' spell did, so he allocated two to Behemoth, aimed, and shot some damage into the Wyrds.

Then he activated the Gun Carriage and found out what the spell does, so he just moved it off to the right to contest.

Zerkova had the arc node pony run up, and between a bunch of sprays, was able to kill a Sentry Stone and nearly kill the second one.

Unfortunately, she parked herself on the other side of the obstruction.



Circle turn 2:

Well, not much to do but try it I suppose. 

The Bokur makes Shamblers. 

One Wyrd kills the models in the way of the Shamblers running. 

Shamblers run to be within 3 of Zerkova and Megalith. 

Hellmouth on both Shamblers drags her out in the open (camping two) and Megalith to within Charge Range. 

Two Wyrds nearly kill Zerkova, and Megalith charges in to seal the deal. 


Victory for the Druids!

Post Game Thoughts:

I felt like I had this game pretty solidly under control. Even if Zerkova hadn't gone out front like that, I could have Strangleholded Behemoth, killed most of his cav on the left, and put Megalith into the Gun Carriage with Curse of Shadows. Once the Gun Carriage is gone and Behemoth can't do anything, I slowly grind down his models, since assassinating Wurmwood with POW 12s is never going to work unless I drop all fury and don't have any souls. 

On to round four!

Battle Report 57: Las Vegas Open Master Qualifier Round 1 - Wurmwood vs. Jaga-Jaga



Prologue: 

I was able to attend the Las Vegas Open this last weekend, and man is that an amazing event. I have to give a shout out to the TOs and EOs, the guys were able to run scrambles, spell draft, who's the boss, Iron Gauntlet, Masters, and Iron Arena all with only three or four judges. Simply incredible.

Not only that, but each event fired on time and ran on schedule, and for those of you who haven't been to a big convention style event before, that is nothing short of a miracle, especially with so few people running the show.

I decided that since I was flying down and only able to make Saturday and Sunday, that I'd bring the big guns to play with - Una and Wurmwood.

Una 2
- Pureblood
- Gorax
- Scarsfell x7

Blackclad Wayfarer x2
Sentry Stone x2
Shifting Stone x2

Pretty standard Una list. Double Shifting Stone is there 100% to keep Fury manageable and also to occasionally let me advance Una up and trigger sprint a couple of times before porting her back to safety.

Wurmwood
- Cassius
- Megalith
- Brennos
- Woldwyrd x3

Blackclad Wayfarer
Gallows Grove

Sentry Stone x2
Shifting Stone x2
Gatorman Bokur
Min Bone Grinders

This is my favorite build with Wurmwood up until last weekend. Brennos and Megalith combine to make shooting warjacks or colossals miserable. Woldwyrds are incredible workhorses, doing far more damage than they have any right to do.

The Bokur lets me play attrition really well and also lets me put my Hellmouths wherever I want them.


Game 1 of Masters and I found myself paired into Rask and Jaga-Jaga. I opted to play Wurmwood since the Scenario was Outlast and I like that one a lot with the tree.

I won the roll off and chose side.

Jaga-Jaga
- Wrastler
- Spitter x3

Dahlia and Skareth
Mist Speaker x2
Croak Raiders




The plan was pretty simple. Gun hard for whichever zone he puts the least models into and have the Woldwyrds on the side opposite Dahlia hunt her since she's definitely putting up Haunting Melody and upkeeping it.

I also have an eye out for assassination every turn if Jaga-Jaga upkeeps either of her spells.

Minions turn 1:

Jaga-Jaga puts up Escort on herself and Grave Wind on Skareth.

Everything runs up.


Circle turn 1:

I think this turn I'm just going to forest wall, kill some croaks, and hope he doesn't roll really hot with his Spitters. If he rolls average, it will take two to kill one Sentry Stone, leaving me with plenty of options for the next turn.

Sentry Mannikins murder some Croaks, Wurmwood makes a forest wall and gets ported into it. Stones port around him. Bone Grinders murder each-other and make souls and corpses aplenty.

At the end of the turn I'm very well positioned to alpha on either zone if I need to, and most of his models can't do anything this turn.


Minions turn 1:

He drops Grave Wind. 

Both Spitters that get Eyeless sight roll very hot and both of my Sentry Stones die.

He contests each zone with one heavy, and then casts Grave Wind on Jaga-Jaga, camping two and on a hill.


Circle turn 2:

I see the opening and I decide to go for it.

All three of my Woldywrds are within range to get Jaga-Jaga if I Hellmouth her forward with a Shambler, and that should be game. She's camping two, she's DEF 16 ARM 16 with 16 boxes, and I can get 6 attacks with three dice to hit and four for damage, and then I can get three more with 3 dice to hit and damage. I can also boost the Hellmouth damage.

First things first, I establish with my opponent that a small based model can fit between the two Croak Raiders without taking a free strike. After I place my Shamblers, they all run. One gets to exactly three from Jaga-Jaga, and the other two go and make it so that the heavies won't get dragged in when I Hellmouth.

Cassius runs, and I cast Hellmouth through him at the Shambler, then Curse of Shadows at Jaga-Jaga.

Two Woldywrds shoot her down.


Victory for the Druids!

Post Game Thoughts:

Well that wasn't how I expected to win, but I sure was happy to take it. 

If he hadn't kept an upkeep on Jaga- Jaga, I would have had a very strong Scenario play here. 

Wurmwood Hellmouths both the Spitter closer (and kills the Croaks near him) and Skareth closer. The Gatorman Bokur moves up and makes Skareth Stationary, and does a bunch of CMA's to kill Croak Raiders. 

Hunters Mark on the Spitter, Megalith charges in and puts him down. Two Woldwyrds do 28 damage to Skareth on average if they don't need to boost to  hit, and Brennos does another 8, easily killing the snake, and I would control both zones, leaving him with nothing to get at Wurmwood with but two Spitter shots, and nothing on the table but three heavies. From there, it's a simple matter to Stranglehold things until I can piece trade favorably, and Jaga-Jaga has to cast Battle Host to make her beasts threat ranges good enough to compete with me.

Ah well, I took the win fairly happily and moved to round two.