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Monday, May 29, 2017

Austin Malifaux Tourney 5/20/17


Good day internet!

Jeez, I've really neglected this blog as of late. My page views definitely show this, as I was going from 300 views a day down to 20 now. I'll do my best to keep this more up to date, especially now that I'm getting into my groove at work and don't have to stay so late anymore. Hopefully.

Earlier when I had heard the date for the upcoming tournament in Austin I started to do some real evaluation of my current lists and felt I needed to make some changes. I no longer felt any love for Leve, his nerf just sucked the fun right out of his play (not to mention his viability). I tried to branch out to other masters like Jack Daw and Parker Barrows, even made Parker get a win or two by making his lists semi-viable. I'm getting close to having an alternate master through Hamelin, as he's actually fun to play but still competetive. In the end, though, my attempts to find a second master to bring as a tech list made me start to think more about my main list, the Viktorias, and how to make it better.

Long story short: my disgusting dislike to the Hodgepodge Emissary's model kept me from actually reading the card until recently without realizing it. Once I'd read it I threw out my disdain for the thing and immediately swapped out the Strongarm Suit for it. A future post may come around explaining how he's absolutely perfect for the list, and how he's my favorite scheme runner in Outcasts.

So with the addition of the Hodgepodge Emissary I went to the tournament with only one list and no fears. Okay, some fears, but mostly confidence.

Game 1

Standard
Extraction

  • Claim Jump
  • Dig Their Graves
  • Leave Your Mark
  • Tail 'Em
  • A Quick Murder
Opponent: Patrick (Molly - Rezzers)


Getting ready to rumble...

My first match was set up against Patrick, an awesome dude who has a great attitude about the game. I've faced his Molly before, using Leveticus I believe but I can't quite remember. Knowing what was across the table, I chose A Quick Murder on Phillip and Leave Your Mark. 


I deployed first and got my crew right in the middle bunched together. When he deployed he was right in the middle as well, except for three Crooligans he placed to my near a building. From what I could tell these three models were his main scheme runners and I immediately thought of aiming the Viks at them rather than the main crew in order to deny VP. The Viks are fast enough to get right back into the fight, but only if they can dispatch the Crooligans fast enough. I held off activating them until I saw what he planned on doing with the Crooligans and moved everyone else up the middle to entice him to leave the Crooligans unsupported as if they were unopposed.

Sorry so blurry, but you can see where the Crooligans were by where the Corpse Markers are...

When it came time for the Viks the Crooligans had already activated and got fairly close together. Using the Student I teleported Ashes closer, who then teleported Blood closer, walked, and teleported again. Blood then chain activated and killed two Crooligans, leaving the third for next turn. When my opponent saw that happen he started to realize his scheme running is going to be challenging, as I assumed he chose Leave Your Mark due to the proximity to my line.


The turn ended with Molly summoning a Necrotic Machine right in the middle of my main crew as a distraction as well as to throw some duels on me. One of his Crooligans got away from me, but I used the Winged Plague to get on top of the scheme marker to deny next turn.


Turn two is where the magic happened. I got initiative and went to work.


The Student walked and teleported Ashes closer to the fray in the middle. Ashes teleports Blood, buffs her, and unleashes her into the back area of his crew. I couldn't quite reach Phillip but got a few models taken down leaving Phillip vulnerable and not many models capable of killing Blood. 


There was a scuffle in the middle, but ultimately I didn't lose anyone. My Winged Plague ran up the right for Leave Your Mark, while the other one picked up the enemy marker and chased down the Crooligan to deny VP again.

Turn three saw the death of Phillip and me scoring for A Quick Murder, as well as a few other casualties. I had forgotten to take pictures at this point so I don't recall much. In the end the Hodgepodge had to replace the Winged Plague at scheme running because the Belle was doing a good job at denial, and the Hodgepodge was doing an excellent job at it. That guy is just so darn mobile in this crew and makes scheme running a breeze, not to mention the utility he brings to the crew.

At the end of turn 4 the game was over, I had won 7-5, with him surprising me by getting Dig Their Graves and Leave Your Mark. Considering I had his crew on the ropes for most of the game he had made it a much closer game than I would have anticipated on turn one.

Game 2

Flank
Guard the Stash

  • Claim Jump
  • Frame For Murder
  • Accusation!
  • Covert Breakthrough
  • Mark For Death
Opponent: Hans (Lilith Neverborn)


Glorious!

So I had only taken one picture of this game, but it was a memorable one! I was facing Lilith, a bane for this list as Dreads has knocked my confidence of this match up. On top of that he was using Wicked Vines as his main ability, something I've never seen myself on the table but have read about. I ended up choosing Frame For Murder (Blood) thinking Lilith will certainly kill her, as well as Covert Breakthrough considering how close the deployment zones are in Flank Deployment.

We both creeped to the center, while Lilith used Tangled Shadows to place my Winged Plague near her and killed him for Mark For Death, which wasn't a good start. He also started placing markers from the Mysterious Emissary that would injure me when on or nearby. I could tell he was trying to bottleneck me from having a direct route to Lilith, and Lilith placed her forest markers right next to the Stash marker making it even harder to approach her.

On turn two he moved closer and bogged up my left lane up the center with Depleted. He placed more markers on the right center lane in front of my Viks to keep them from coming closer. When Lilith activated she managed to get Wicked Vines on both my Viktorias which was super frustrating, but when I asked about the ability he mentioned that the condition would go away if they're pushed which was something I forgot. When I heard that I remembered why Dreads prefers Tangle Shadows over Wicked Vines and had to do some clever stuff to get out of it. I had Big Jake charge Ashes to get his trigger to push her 3" getting rid of her Wicked Vines. Then I had the Hodgepodge use his (0) to push Blood 3" and both sisters were free to move, if a little bloodied by the end of it. I think Blood had 2 HP left while Ashes had 4, it was a bit scary.

With my sisters free I decided to go around the markers he made, something that surprised him as he didn't expect that mobility. Ashes, being pushed from Big Jake toward the left-center, moved and teleported Blood to the left side and buffed her damage. Blood, who was given Fast by the Student, let loose and Whirlwinded right into his main crew. This resulted in bloody glory, as Blood managed to kill the Emissary, two Changelings, a Tot (I think) and LILITH.

Yes, I finally managed to kill Lilith, which is a tall order to fill considering how hard Lilith is to kill traditionally.

In the end, though, it wasn't enough and I lost 8-9. It was mostly due to screw ups on my part because I was so focused on killing Lilith that I made some dumb decisions that made me miss some Strategy VP for being out of position. Had I just made some clear decisions with Hannah and the Hodgepodge I would have gotten all my VP and won the game, or at least tie it. Oh well, lessons learned, and dead Lilith.

Game 3

Close
Reconnoiter
  • Claim Jump
  • Eliminate the Leadership
  • Accusation!
  • Search the Ruins
  • Undercover Entourage
Opponent: Josh (Marcus Arcanists)

This is gonna get messy...

My last game proved to be very interesting. With Close deployment I saw an advantage, but then he decided to use Marcus and I saw that Close can work for either of us and would come down to positioning and initiative. While I was very comfortable with my crew and he was unfamiliar with Viks I felt more confident but still wary. He initially had his crew right on the line all bunched up, but then asked me what my crew did and decided to spread out rightfully. Because I chose Eliminate the Leadership and Search The Ruins I knew it would be a toss up if I didn't kill Marcus fast, and I was really relying on the Hodgepodge living long enough to place markers for Search the Ruins.

Marcus' ridiculous walk range...

With close deployment I knew the action was going to start right away, and after a few moves to throw out activations we started getting to it. He moved Cojo right into my lines with Marcus in tow close behind to the right. I threw Blood right into them, killed Cojo, but didn't manage to hurt Marcus as he passed off all the damage onto his nearby friendlies. As predicted, this game is going to go down to initiative.



Needless to say I lost initiative... 

Long story short, Marcus killed Blood. I thought I had the resources to weather the storm, I had 3 stones for damage prevention, the Red Joker to stop at least one attack, positives to defense to have him cheat first for the most part, everything was in order. In his last attack I had only two damage left and flipped the Black Joker for damage prevention. If only a moderate card showed up, which was a decent chance considering my hand and how many weak cards were flipped, I would have lived through it and just went to town. Alas, it didn't, and I had to become creative.

I had Ashes eventually get in there and do the work Blood usually did. She managed to kill Marcus at the end of turn two. Throughout the game I had dominated Reconnoiter, something I don't think I would have been able to do without the Hodgepodge and Big Jake - the newest additions to my Viks crew. 

Despite losing Blood early on I managed to get a win 7-3! It was a great game full of surprises, with our best fights happening to our worst models - a Winged Plague and Jackalope were flipping face cards like it was going out of style.


At the end of the tournament I found that I had reached 3rd place, not bad at all! I used my store credit to buy more Descent stuff, for some reason I'd reawakened my love for the game and want to get it on the table.

Speaking of Descent...


I've finally started to get this game organized and easier to get on the table. I consolidated all my Descent stuff, putting expansion cards and stuff with my main box and got all the minis together. I took a container I bought with this idea in mind, cut some magnetic sheets I bought a while back on Amazon for cheap, and placed it in the container. The sheet is adhesive so no gluing was needed.

I had the idea to put some small rare earth magnets on the bottom of the bases, but saw that it would be more of a chore than I anticipated. I'd need to drill holes for every model to place the magnets, and it didn't seem to be a strong magnet considering how small it was. Being that a bigger magnet wouldn't be as universal depending on the model size and it would elevate the base way more than I wanted I had to think of a better solution. I remembered seeing people use washers, and it was kind of like how I used nickels for my old Orks, and thought that would be a good solution. I traced each different sized base and went to Home Depot, bought some washers and glued them on.

Success!

It worked like a charm! I've got most of the models magnetized, but the ones I bought for the heroes turned out to be too large and I'll have to figure out a different sized washer for them. The big models have warped bases, which normally don't matter for the smaller bases but these ones look like floppy pizzas. I'll have to fix them before I place washers on them in order for the base to be flush with the washers.

I really want to get working on these guys because I absolutely love this game, it's by far my favorite board game and is the closest offering to a light RPG as I've seen. The rules are very approachable and every game has a memorable moment. I'll keep this blog posted as to my progress, I feel that this project will have me much more motivated to finish than usual!

Until next time, keep gaming!