- pGrim Angus
- Troll Impaler
- Bertt Snowgel (Glacier King)
- Trollkin scattergunners (min + UA)
- Krielstone Bearer (min + UA)
- Croak Raiders (max) x2
- Gatorman Witch Doctor
- For IG: Viktor Pendrake + swamp gobbers bellows crew
- For Masters: Dhunia Knot (couldn’t get them painted for IG in time)
Runes of War - Stock-standard, you probably know it by now
pGrissel was my third for IG, but I never actually played her.
First up was the IG.
Round 1: Emanuel Class with eKrueger/Brad/eMorvahna
This game was recorded, I believe. Essentially, the way this game goes is that eMorv can trivially kill off all the runeshapers, then starts grinding down the heavies, but is really trying to win on deathclock. Runes needs to win before that happens, probably by scenario, since eMorv is basically impossible to catch in melee.
Emon committed pretty hard to the zone on my left, so I swapped Mulg over to the right side, and started clearing that zone over and over - while a Mauler and Runeshaper toed into the other zone and survived incredible amounts of attacks to contest. The game eventually ended when Emon forgot to feat to jam the zone, and I rampaged a stalker out, and killed the three other contesting models to win.
Round 2: Dan Yount with eKrueger/pMorvahna?/Brad
Hah, this is the first of two games I played against Dan this weekend, and the first of two that ended on a stupid early-game assassination (spoilers). Nothing much to learn here, except that Dan’s ultra-aggresive style is actually really good if Runes can only get a single wall (he got up to 5 synergy when I was expecting him to only get 1). Doomy dies trying to bodyblock for a horribly misplaced Janissa.
Round 3: Andy with something/something/eKromac
I saw eKromac, he saw I had Runes, so he dropped eKromac tier (with a couple argii, Stalker and Ghetorix) and I dropped Grim.
This game started off very excitingly, when I tried to shoot down a heavy with Beast Lore’d croaks, but it hyper aggressived into melee, and I left it on 3 boxes, and of course the fire went out. Since it was like 4” away from my caster, I was pretty much dead, but a hero croak took a free strike, and killed it - phew!
The rest of the game played out pretty standardly. Grim would Bola a heavy, then the croaks and Glacier king would shoot it to death. Repeat until everything but Kromac is dead (barring a couple of close ranged assassinations from paralysis and crit freeze on the argii guns)
Round 4: Josh? (I lost my sheet…) with Harby/pSevvy/eFeora
I lost my sheet, so I quickly glanced at his casters and told him I was playing Grim (since he couldn’t make an educated choice about my other lists). He decided to play jack-heavy eFeora, since it had several fire immune models, not least of which, his caster.
This game was super interesting! Between passage and immunity to fire, the croaks were almost useless in the early game, so I just ran them forward, attacking zealots and random support models (and Grim picked off the monolith bearer before they could mini-feat). Whenever he battled, I’d send in the croaks to scratch up the Avatar, then when the Avatar was passaged/enlivened and gazing to try to mess with my movement, I sent in the glacier king to stationary it and finish it off. I then feated with Grim to prevent the judicator from absolutely obliterating my glacier king. He battled this turn, but hand of judgement couldn’t find a spot where his reach weapon wasn’t engaging one of the croaks that ran past him, so he just bopped one rather than spraying down like four. Then I got to live the dream - the hand of judgement was within 5” of the judicator, so the croaks got to be pow 14 with their darts, and did like 40 damage to the judicator, and the glacier king easily finished it off. At this point, hand of judgement couldn’t realistically kill my glacier king, so I just blocked my caster from assassination, and finished off the remaining models.
Round 1: Nathan with eMorv/eKromac
A leyline listener! And also, my fourth game against Circle - somebody was apparently upset about me switching to trolls.
I dropped pGrim, since I’m well aware of how good eKromac is into Runes. As predicted, druids were a huge problem for Grim, since only him and the scatergunners could even damage them, and Nathan did a great job at keeping the UA and leader behind cloud walls at all times. Unfortunately, his shifting stones were not as well protected, so the glacier king broke one set a turn. After the game, he mentioned that he didn’t have much experience into trolls, but recognizing it as a strong gunline, he applied his cool anti-legion tech, namely charging into a bunch of croaks, then sprinting forward and engaging some more. This didn’t quite work out, since Grim aimed, far struck himself and just needed a boosted (puppet strings) 9 to knock them down in melee. He lost two heavies that way, and then a third who wandered too close to the glacier king and got feated on and frozen. Kromac without heavies didn’t have a great chance of killing the glacier king, so he went forward into charge range of the king and that was that.
Round 2: Scott with eMakeda/pMorghoul
I dropped pGrim again here, and he dropped pMorghoul - who actually has a pretty decent matchup into both my lists, I believe. The game started out great, with the croaks nearly killing both the titan gladiator and bronzeback, and the feat holding the rest of his speed 3~4 models in place. He responded by feating on the Glacier King, and jamming with the Cyclops Brute, and I couldn’t quite come up with a plan that would allow me to kill both aradii without immediately losing my Glacer King (and therefore the game). Unfortunately, he forgot to cast safeguard on himself, so the glacier king backed out of the feat, shot Morghoul and pushed him away from his only shield guard. Grim then advanced, bola’ed him, and 10 croaks killed Morghoul easily.
Round 3: Jeff with Denny3/Goreshade3
This game was also streamed. Essentially, the way this game went down was that he flanked super hard with his cav and sent everything else down the cener. I focused into a tight formation in the center, and focused on the scenario (recon). On the bottom of 2, I managed to clear the zone, kill all but one of the blackbanes and feat on a couple cav models, though he had managed to kill around 10 of my croaks, and even managed to turn two of them into ghosts in the previous turn. I put my caster in the zone and scored three points - I guess this is the Grim gambit? It feels very similar to the Krueger gambit. Anyways, he went for the assassination, but Goreshade was hanging so far back that he wasn’t in range to get his free spell, and since he forgot to light cav, he had to use two mockery of lifes to stationary Grim, meaning he got 2 unboosted 12s from siphon bolt and and unboosted 13 and 14 on me from the nyss, which left me on about 9 boxes. I counter assassinated pretty easily, since Goreshade was like 8” away from grim.
Round 4: Trenton with eVlad/Harkevitch
Whelp, I was locked in to Runes of War, but both of his lists were actually decent matchups for Runes (I thought). He dropped Harkevitch with double conquests, and the first four turns of the game can be summarized by runeshapers and boomhowlers uselessly flailing at each other while the conquests kept shooting, and my heavies advanced up the table way too cautiously. Eventually it came to a point where I sent Mulg and the Earthborn far enough forward to threaten the entire zone, and he decided to charge and pick up Mulg. He got both conquests on Mulg (though if Janissa would have been 0.25” to the right, he would have gotten stuck on force lock and immediately lost) and killed him. I responded by sending a raged earthborn onto one conquest and strangleholding another. Unfortunately, I sent the Earthborn too close to the strangleheld conquest since I was borrowing Boomhowler’s melee weapon. I left the conquest on four boxes when all was said and done (and after Janissa did almost no damage with her armor-piercing charge), but he repaired 10 damage on it from the mechanics, and was able to kill my Earthborn with the other one. At this point I’m pretty screwed, so I sent in the axer to finish off the heavily damaged conquest, and the mauler to wail on the more healthy one (it had taken some incidental damage from Doomy’s feat, but I think that’s it). My plan was to break one side and stranglehold it so that hopefully the mechanics would fail their repair and the mauler would live. Instead, the mauler rolled fire and killed the conquest basically by himself. One razorwind assassination attempt later, and I won the game and got into the master’s finals.
Round 1: Tom Guan with Haley3/eHaley
I saw Cygnar, so followed my troll guru’s advice and immediately dropped Runes. He dropped Haley2. Tom, being Tom, went for a top of 2 assassination, but backed out belatedly when he remembered protective fit, and just casually killed Mulg and feated on most of my army instead. This game, I remembered I had Stranglehold, and spent the entire rest of the game Strangleholding his Stormclad, while my battlegroup bumbled around doing almost nothing and dying spectacularly (especially with how badly I mishandled trying to kill thorn on Haley2’s feat turn) - and the frigging Runeshapers killed everything on the table. Seriously, over three turns, my ~8 surviving Runeshapers killed every gun mage, every B13 member, every stormlance, most of the support and most of the Stormclad, and won me the game on scenario. There was an exciting incident where a full camp Haley just ran towards Doomy, but I pinned her in, and walked behind a wall, and that was that.
Round 2: Dan Yount (again) with eKrueger/Brad
Hah, Runes vs Brad again, and yet again there’s not too much to learn from this game. This time around, I wasn’t as screwed by terrain (both sides of the table would have let me have a wall in the recon zone), so I actually properly constructed Fort Doomshaper. I even killed my own objective just to make sure he couldn’t get synergy from it (and light my Earthborn on fire, though he deserved it for requiring 7 attacks to kill an objective). Most of my Runeshapers flanked super hard, but ended up being completely irrelevant. Dan saw a chance to take a scenario lead, so he ported Brad onto the flag, and backed his entire army up to barely contest the flag. Unfortunately, it looked like Brad was approximately within 11” of my Mauler (and I didn’t like my odds of playing the scenario game), so I set up both of my heavies to push the Mauler, put Fortune and Rush on him and caught Brad in Doomy’s feat. The Mauler was about 10” away after the push, so charged, and killed him with a fury to spare.
Round 3: Jordan Nach with Durgen/Macbain!!!
I decided to drop Runes, since I absolutely live in terror of the Earthbreaker, but Jordan decided to drop Macbain!!! instead, since he felt it was fine into Runes, and he wanted to be unlocked for the finals.
I love the plan of his list - he goes first (because of anastasia), his entire army ADs (thanks to Highborn), then runs full speed. The next turn he feats on the 8 most brutal solos (and especially the steady ones) and runs again into your entire army. Then you have to deal with invulnerable weaponmasters in your face for the rest of the game, and a Galleon shooting and dragging in heavies.
I responded to this gameplan… poorly. The Runeshapers did good work (and I must have made 60% or more of my tough rolls, where he only made like 5 or so the whole game), but I sent Mulg and Janissa in on a cute Tectonic Shift + Runebreaker plan, which allowed him to drag in and kill Mulg. Then I absolutely had to kill eAlexia, which cost me the Mauler, and brought him up to 3 scenario points, whereas I failed to clear the zone and didn’t even got to 1. The next turn, I scored to 2 points and killed most of his army (except hawk, who spent the rest of the game punching the kriesltone - it made like 7 tough checks in a row) - and I mention that my only out is if my EBDT and Axer (without the armor bonus from the Krielstone) somehow manage to survive and contest for 2 whole rounds against a Galleon I couldn’t do anything about. The Galleon made 7 attacks per turn (thanks to jackhammer), and managed to miss 8 of them against my def 12 Earthborn (and didn’t roll great on the damage he did get), so I contested twice, killed his two models that he sent in to contest and won on scenario, despite being obviously outplayed.
Round 4: Jeff Everitt with Issyria/Ravyn
This game was horrible. Absolutely not worth watching - and not just because I was locked in to Grim (though that didn’t help). I’d been talking with Jeff and the other Canadians and I just couldn’t come up with a plan to beat his pairing, even with Runes, so I was hoping to dodge (and I hear that Ryan came within 4 seconds or a tough roll of making it to the final and at least letting me play a game).
Ravyn tier shot a bunch, all my infantry died, I screwed up the one out I had, Glacier king died to slightly above average dice. I made 2 attacks, killed 0 models, lost all but the impaler and the Krielstone and conceded after 3 turns. There, now you don’t have to watch it either.