Battle Report 7: Vice Scrutator Vindictus vs. Midas

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to yet another Truth & Consequence battle report, this time featuring the might of Vice Scrutator Vindictus! Having dropped his Jaga Jaga gunline in favor of an ADR pairing, my opponent gave me an opportunity to get a rep in with my Vindictus build, so time to have at it! 

I run Vindictus in Exemplar Interdiction, and it has proven to be one of the more fun list builds I've used in Mk. 3. I love that Vindictus is such a fun option now, going from the almost undisputably worst warcaster in Protectorate to being, I think, one of our best options basically overnight. I always said the Exemplar theme would be the final piece to unlocking Vindictus and... well, here we are. 

Vice Scrutator Vindictus - Exemplar Interdiction
-Reckoner x2
Exemplar Vengers x2
Knights Exemplar w/Officer
Knights Exemplar
min Choir of Menoth
Knight Exemplar Seneschal x2
High Exemplar Gravus
Wrack

My opponent dropped Midas. 

Midas
-Road Hog
-War Hog x2
-Razor Boar x2
Farrow Slaughterhousers x2
Farrow Brigands w/Warlord
Gatorman Bokor & Swamp Shamblers

That's off the top of my head, but I believe that was it. 

Our scenario today was The Pit II. I don't remember what objective he chose, I chose the healing one but... it never came up for either of us, so not really important. 

We played on an odd shaped table; really it had no effect on the game, it was a 44" long table so we just shaved 2" off measurements off either side to compensate (2" shorter deployment zones) and the rounded sides just sort of clipped off the very corners of a normally square table that never really get used anyway. Homemachine is good times!

I won the starting roll and opted to go first. My opponent chose his side based on terrain, I didn't really care because True Path is awesome. 

I deployed pretty much symmetrically, there's not really a reason not to. My front row in order from left to right was Vengers, Knights Exemplar, Seneschal, Vindictus, Seneschal, Knights Exemplar w/Officer, Vengers. The Reckoners stood on either side of Gravus right behind the front line, choir behind that, and a Wrack was deployed just ahead of my army (picture below is before I deployed it, so it's a bit out there). 

It's beginning to look a lot like Mk 2!

It's beginning to look a lot like Mk 2!

My opponent's deployment from my left to right was a unit of Slaughterhousers, War Hog, Road Hog, Razor Boar, Midas, Brigands, Razor Boar, War Hog, Slaughterhousers. The Shamblers stood just behind the Road Hog and War Hog to my left. His Brigands chose my Knights Exemplar w/Officer as their Prey.

Two infantry builds. Haven't played this kind of matchup in a bit. 

Two infantry builds. Haven't played this kind of matchup in a bit. 

Protectorate Turn 1: 

Vindictus allocates nothing. He puts Penitence onto the Knights Exemplar unit that the Brigands have Prey on, casts True Path, and advances up. Everything then runs. I don't run as far as I can, since I can nearly stand on the far edges of the rectangle zones with the Vengers, instead opting to just crowd up the very back edge of the zones. My threat distance is so extreme, I'm already threatening an inch or two out of his deployment zone and figure there's not much reason to go too crazy. 

Gravus and the two Seneschals lean a bit left, but otherwise everything runs a bit symmetrically. I need those three solos over there to help add some punch, since he has weighted more of his heavies over in that direction. Mostly just setting up to box him out of the game as much as possible.

Going from playing my 'mostly SPD 4' Reznik list to this one sure feels good. 

Going from playing my 'mostly SPD 4' Reznik list to this one sure feels good. 

Minions Turn 1: 

He doesn't have a lot of room, but... 2" melee gives good opportunity to screen. 

Midas puts Death March onto the Slaughterhousers to my right and moves up a little. Razor Boars move up and activate their animus, everything else just runs. Two Slaughterhousers run out front of both units to screen them from charges, and the Brigands use the forest as cover, although they move pretty far forward. Shamblers run, keeping a bit to my left. 

So many duuuudes

So many duuuudes

Protectorate Turn 2: 

Well, it's obviously feat turn. Need to make good use of Reposition to get my whole army into Vinny's feat. I upkeep Penitence.

Vindictus moves up and casts True Path. He also casts Defenders Ward onto the Vengers on the right. He pops his feat. 

Two Vengers on the right charge, and between impacts and their charge attacks kill a brigand and the two screening Slaughterhousers. All the Vengers run or reposition over into Vinny's control. I should note, the Razor Boar would typically be able to counter charge, but due to the feat is not able to. Fun to get that part of the feat during my turn as well. 

Vengers on the left charge, clearing the two Slaughterhousers and forcing a successful tough check on a Brigand before repositioning back and staying in Vindictus' feat range. 

Knights Exemplar walk up and cut down a couple brigands. I believe in total I kill four this turn, and have one knocked down from the tough check. Reckoners move up to be useful later, feeding through two tiny spaces in between rough terrain features. Choir does Passage on them. Gravus and the Seneschals position even more to the left. 

Being this close without a care in the world is a thing. 

Being this close without a care in the world is a thing. 

Minions Turn 2: 

He's got to get a bit of work done this turn, but unfortunately he can't do a lot. The Slaughterhousers on the right Vengeance forward. One kills a Knight Exemplar with his attack, triggering Penitence and killing himself. The others just move forward to go try and poke my Vengers. 

Midas pulls all his fury and drops Death March. The Bokor places a few Shamblers within walking distance of my Vengers on the left. Midas puts Battle Lust and Death March onto the Bokor unit, which moves forward to start putting attacks into my Vengers. However, he messed up positioning here a little, and after moving the Shamblers realizes the Bokor can't actually move up to get them into command. They just durdle around a bit instead of trying to kill a Venger. 

The Slaughterhousers on my right walk up to fight my Vengers, but with Defenders Ward up, they are unable to land any hits. Brigands kill some Knights Exemplar in melee, a couple dying to Penitence. His Road Hog moves up a bit and sprays his own Shambler, killing it and hitting a Venger, three Knights Exemplar, and a Seneschal. The Venger is left on one, all three Knights die, and the Seneschal is disabled. This bit is interesting though: based on the timing of the Seneschal's healing ability, he heals 3 wounds from all the Knights that died, and Gravus keeps him on his feet. He is, however, on fire. 

His Razor Boars move up and position aggressively with Counter Charge up. He passes his turn. 

I took some losses but...I get a full, unstopped turn into his army now. Time to get some work done.

I took some losses but...I get a full, unstopped turn into his army now. Time to get some work done.

Protectorate Turn 3: 

I upkeep Penitence and Defenders Ward. The Venger and Seneschal are on fire, neither of which go out but neither breaks armor, either. 

Vindictus scoots back a bit and casts True Path (Pathfinder is a thing, rough terrain everywhere.) Vengers on the right use their regular attacks and mounts to clear off the Slaughterhousers, and reposition to spread out against possible counter attack from the War Hog. 

The Knights Exemplar with an Officer move up and minifeat, using it to one-shot the Warlord and cleave through a few more Brigands, basically finishing the unit off (I think one is left alive.) The couple remaining members of the other unit clear off the Seneschal so he can have a charge lane into the Road Hog. 

Between the Reckoner and Vengers, I'm able to clear off all the Shamblers in my way and engage the Razor Boar, using Reposition to get out of my own way. One Seneschal charges his Road Hog. I mis-angle this somewhat, as I wanted to Smite him into the Bokor as well as his Road Hog, but after my three attacks, the Road Hog and War Hog are knocked down and the Road Hog only has 5 wounds left. What a boss solo. 

Gravus charges the War Hog at fully loaded souls, leaving the heavy on 8 before repositioning out of the way. My remaining Seneschal charges the War Hog, killing it, then takes his second attack on the Road Hog, killing it. 9 points + 2 free solos killing 31 points of heavies... seems alright. 

I end my turn, scoring the right side zone for 1 point, making it 1-0. 

Attritiooooon!

Attritiooooon!

Minions Turn 3: 

My opponent figures he'll go for a bit of an attrition play before trying an assassination. His Bokor goes into Gravus, dismounting him but the dismount puts him out of melee. Two Slaughterhousers charge a Venger on the left and kill it. I think after the Bokor didn't do enough, he decides that just isn't going to go his way. 

His War Hog moves over and kills a couple Knights Exemplar, taking 2 damage for his troubles. Midas charges my Knight Exemplar near the center of the table, Curses Vindictus, and hits him with Calamity. He then Hex Blasts for a good chunk of damage, which I reduce a bit with my one focus. He feats, dropping a Road Hog and War Hog in melee with Vindictus. 

Dice almost fail him here, but the very last attack, needing a 7, connects and kills Vinny. Game ends on assassination. Sadly I didn't take a picture at this point, I thought I did but it's not in my phone :(

Conclusion

This list is seriously so much fun. Exemplar Interdiction has already started looking a bit samey from one build to the next but... well, you bring the good models for it, and that's what is in this build. I've debated swapping Gravus out for a third unit of Knights, swapping my free points over to just three CAs, but I like Gravus' speed and potential here. He did great in this one, and he can be a serious pain to deal with in the right situation. 

Attrition was going fine, being able to feat and just shrug off a turn that close to your opponent feels pretty good. I'm not sure I could have played this a whole lot better *except* for obviously just keeping Vindictus further back. Too much Reznik cruising up getting work done; once the feat turn is done, Vinny has no business being anywhere except just close enough to clip necessary models with True Path. Definitely a lesson learned here that I'll need to take into the future. 

Also, while terrain didn't necessarily allow for it, I think the Reckoners could have just moved over to go hang out with Vinny. Ashen Veil would have no effect on Midas' returned beasts, but really I should have just recognized I didn't need them to be involved in the attrition game and packed them in front of my caster. That said, at the end of the day just straight up distance would have saved me and I should have used that, especially since even if I had cleared that zone, I already had a unit in there so Vinny being touching it had no real purpose. 

Was a great game, though, with some lessons learned! Vindictus is tougher than you'd think, but still a Warcaster that can still definitely die. 

Thanks all, see you next time!