I was fortunate enough to play in the Masters event for Lock and Load a couple of weeks ago. I took a pairing that you will probably find really similar to Chandler’s simply because we both agree that it’s the best pairing in the faction (game?) right now and we’ve been keen to play it.
Rasheth (Imperial Warhost)
Beast Handlers (min)
Beast Handlers (min)
Zaal 2 (Exalted)
Round one, I was paired with John Fairs of WTC Canada who had a rather nasty Ossyan/Rahn pairing in prep for Iron Gauntlet. I knew he would be dropping Ossyan, so I couldn’t drop Rasheth or I get obliterated, and so it was that I put Zaal down into the expected Ossyan.
- Fane Guardian
He won the roll off to go first, so I took the side of the table with tons of cover as my only real out against his models and we deployed.
Retribution Turn 1:
Ossyan sticks Quicken on the Sentinels, Shatterstorm on the Destors, and Admonition on Hypnos and everything runs at me either full speed or just out of walk and shoot range on the Supreme Guardians.
Skorne turn 1:
I spend a little time considering a turn 1 feat and then decide solidly against it.
Instead, I create little bunkers for my Ancestral Advocates with Immortals and terrain and pop Grave Mist with both units.
The Supremes make sure that basically only one Trident can get on either one, and that Ossyan will have to charge to get them in feat range.
Vision goes on the Mammoth and Zaal puts up Aura of Power.
Note the Ancestral Guardian and two Immortals hanging out on the back edge of the table - I need to keep Resonance active the entire game or I can’t threaten far enough, so the answer to not losing my AG is to just never move him up ever.
Retribution turn 1:
John goes into the tank for a very long time, as he was hoping that I would feat and run at him. He eventually opts to basically do nothing but bait vengeance with his Sentinels and hang back with everything else. Both of his Tridents get Force Barrier from their power tokens an the Sentinel unit gets it from the Artificer.
Skorne turn 2:
I see a good opportunity to Feat and do some good work here, and I also see a way to get a coinflip on his Trident in the zone.
The left unit of Immortals charges in, landing several good hits on the Trident and leaving it on, I think, 15.
The Mammoth aims, spins up 4 shots and….misses every single one of them into the Trident.
My right side Supreme Guardian charges in and kills a Sentinel or two. Zaal walks up and Feats. Unfortunately, due to the parallax of the massive Mammoth base, my initial measurement of where in on the Feat for the right side Supreme is was off by about 1/4 of an inch, so he is out of the Feat.
I panic a bit here, and don’t do the smart thing of running my right side Supreme up to threaten literally everything, and instead just move it out of the way so the Gobber Chef can run to the flag. If the other Supreme is in John’s face, I think I’m in a pretty good position even with the inevitable loss on the right.
I score two to nothing.
Score: 2 - 0
Retribution turn 3:
John moves Ossyan up, gets the Supreme in control range and Feats. The first Trident rolls up 8 shots and handily takes down the only ARM 19 battle engine.
His Destors and other Trident clear off a bunch of Immortals, and the Sentinels charge in and kill a bunch of Immortals there.
John runs his Fane Guardian to the flag and controls his zone for two points to my none.
Score: 2 - 2
Skorne turn 3:
My dice take a bit of a dice this turn, but I am able to kill the damage Trident with charging Immortals, and clear off my flag with Zaal.
On the right, far fewer Sentinels die than I would like, even with boosted damage rolls from Zaal. The Mammoth tries and fails to cripple anything on Hypnos significant enough to scare him off. I run my Supreme Guardian up to the zone but critically forget to spend souls to bring back Immortals first.
I score two to one this turn.
Score: 4 - 3
Retribution turn 4:
Three Destors and the Sphinx kill off my Supreme Guardian, and Sentinels plus Trident shots leave my Mammoth on 6 boxes. John doesn’t move some of his models meaningfully this turn because he’s down to under three minutes left, but he scores 2 - 0 this turn.
Score: 4 - 5
Skorne turn 4:
I am able to Trample the Mammoth through his entire unit of Sentinels, killing most and then flailing miserably at the Trident.
The three remaining left Immortals kill off some Cavalry duders and the Novitiate runs up to give them tough.
Hakaar and the AG hang out behind the wall, and I score 2 - 1 to bring it back to parity.
Score: 6 - 6
Retribution turn 5:
I have no more pictures, the time was too crunchy, but this turn Hypnos kills off the Mammoth and the Trident moves into my Zone and tries to kill Hakaar but fails.
The entire unit of Immortals on the left gets obliterated and so does the Chef.
John scores 3 points to my none, but he’s down to 4 seconds on his clock.
Score: 6 - 9
Skorne turn 5:
Zaal, with Righteous Vengeance and a ton of souls, is able to get into the far zone and kill the Sphinx and the remaining Destors.
The AG plus the remaining Sentinel kill off the damaged Trident, and Hakaar contests the middle zone. I score a single point to John’s single point, but the writing is on the wall if he sees his win.
Score: 7 - 10
Retribution turn 6:
John scoops seven focus onto Ossyan and runs Hypnos into the zone that Zaal has taken over. The clock dings, an he scores 2 - 0 to win the game on points.
Score: 7 - 12
Victory for Retribution!
This felt like a very winnable game, even with going second and making the huge Feat mistake. If I had had 3 more Immortals from reviving through the Supreme, I could have been contesting the left zone with two of them in the far corner, and him running in Hypnos would not have score him any points there, so he would have clocked.
Overall, I was pretty happy with my play, not tilting and forcing John to a very close end game.
Sadly, I got the bye next round, so I went and got some food and then got roped into Judgement and dropped. Fortunately, I have several Iron Gauntlet battle reports for you coming down the pipe soon :)
Thanks for reading!