Jun 26, Texicon, Cryx Chris Masters Tournament

Author: Chris Leake

Hi! I'm Chris; I played the Texicon tournament weekend and managed to scrape my way into top 8 for the Masters tourney. First off, holy crap, it was a great Con. Apollo Harden, the mastermind behind the event, is a genius. The local warmachine community will be lessened by his absence as he rides into the sunset, shiny and chrome. I played a total of about 15 games over the weekend against a variety of opponents with much the same armies. Ret, Cygnar, Khador and Menoth were very much in force. I was frequently one of the few, if not only players rocking the undead forces (not to mention a large lack of Hordes players in general). First, broad view:

Cryx isn't garbage.

We may not be amazing anymore, and there's more than a little salt when I look at the shiny toys the other factions got, but we're not unplayable by any stretch of the imagination. My biggest lament is how little we actually changed in the process; all of the tech that used to work for us, still does. All of the gameplans and all the practice that people have had against Cryx in the past are still mostly relevant.

Infantry spam is still a skew that has to be answered.

Almost every one of the list I brought had at least 20 infantry, sometimes up to 40+. Most lists I ran into still have some problems dealing with that many models, especially if they had some sort of defensive tech such as stealth or incorporeal.

We have problems with upkeeps.

With the loss of Withershadow's Unbinding, we are woefully exposed to defensively minded upkeeps. Orin, Blood Witch Hags, and the handful of casters with Hex Blast are the few things we have available to rid ourselves of upkeeps. Beware, it’s even worse than I expected it to be.
Ranged weaponry is almost required.

I feel like every single list should have a token ranged unit, it's far too important for zoning against enemy infantry and for skirmishing in general. Having a full melee list that isn't rocking some pretty crazy defensive tech will not survive contact with the enemy. Anti-infantry tech is cheap and plentiful and easy to apply across almost all factions.

But all that said...

You guys, Scaverous is super legit good.

He has a huge tool box, and with the souls available (even a handful) he gets out of hand very quickly. Telekinesis is just as crazy a spell as it ever was, and the rest of his kit is just fantastic.
And you might want to get some Croe’s Cutthroats. These guys are deceptive. At only 16 points they’re not terribly expensive for a character unit, and their stats are actually pretty bad, but with any assistance whatsoever, they will quickly beat some face or fill it full of crossbow bolts. I haven’t had a chance to try and snipe a caster to stop them from casting spells yet, but the option is there. Don’t field them front and center; their ideal location is on a flank midboard with a forest to bounce back and forth through with Reposition[5]. AD is very valuable on them.

And now, on to the actual battle reports!

CHAMPIONS

First day format was Champions Season 4 (Agathia, Skarre1, Denny1, Lich1

My lists:

  • Denny1
    • Madelyn
    • Deathripper
    • Deathripper
    • Nightmare
  • Croe's Cutthroats
  • Satyxis Blood Witches + Hag
  • Satyxis Blood Witches + Hag
  • Nyss Hunters
  • Skarre1
    • Skarlock
    • Kraken
  • Aiakos
    • Kraken
  • Darragh
  • Orin
  • Ragman
  • Necrotech
  • Scrap Thralls
  • Soul Trapper (not included, as I didn't have one painted)

Skarre1 vs Kaelyssa – Linebreaker

Two krakens against Kaelyssa with Discordia, a Hydra, and Invictors with all the trimmings. I put the two krakens in the midboard on turn 2 and one is reduced to a single box by 6 Sentinels, a huge CRA from Invictors, and a shot each from Discordia and the Hydra. It all kinda went downhill from there, with the terrain not being particularly navigable by huge bases and blocking in my undamaged Kraken. Ended the game pretty lamely, mostly got ground out and eventually he won on scenario.

Skarre1 vs Iron Mother – Extraction(?)

I cannot remember the specifics of this game at all; All I know is that I managed to pull off a scenario win with 5 cp from my sheet. (derp.)

Denny1 vs Rahn – Recon

This game was an absolute slugfest against a friend of mine that I’ve played many times, Nick Leland. He shows up later in the finals at Texicon Masters, getting 3rd place. This list was double Battlemages, Phoenix, Discordia, Invictors, and the assorted support staff that I seem to be seeing in every list these days (Arcanists, Silly Willy, soulless, etc). Highlights included getting up to 4 CP by running Denny back and forth between the two outside flags, with the last CP only failing because of a Sphinx that was barely within 4” of the flag, and too thick for Denny to kill herself. Great game, and a nailbiter. I had 2 Croe’s Cutthroats remaining and Denny herself at the end of the game.

Skarre1 vs Vyros1 – Entrenched

This game was a great example of a brain fart on my opponent's part. He put 4 heavies within reach of my Krakens, and I killed all four of them with an offensive feat with focus to spare. Great friend, and was a good sport about pulling a derp in the final round.

Ended the day 2-2, not qualifying.


STEAMROLLER

The dawn of the second day saw the format go to 75 point 2016 Steamroller without any painting requirements! SCAVEROUS AHOY!

  • Denny1
    • Madelyn
    • Deathripper
    • Deathripper
    • Nightmare
  • Croe's Cutthroats
  • Satyxis Blood Witches + Hag
  • Satyxis Blood Witches + Hag
  • Nyss Hunters
  • Scaverous
    • Skarlock
    • Deathripper
    • Deathripper
    • Erebus
  • Croe's Cutthroats
  • Bane Warriors
  • Satyxis Raiders + Witch
  • Cephalyx Overlords
  • Cephalyx Overlords
  • Machine Wraith

This time around I played against Caine2 twice, and Ossyan twice. I dropped the same army each time into the opponent, and things worked out pretty well.

Scaverous vs Caine2 – Entrenched

This was a great game against a very new opponent, and it let me test some things with Scaverous. Just FYI, TK + Arc Node run can get you a Feast of Worms into the AD line of your opponent turn one. I just made sure I measured 19” away from Caine2 at all times, and stayed 19.5 away from him. Collected CP, eventually won scenario.

Scaverous vs Caine2 – Extraction

This was a nailbiter of a game, and had me lose to a WITNESS ME! moment (at Texicon, you get bonus points for yelling "WITNESS ME!" just before attempting a daring assassination and having the TO proclaim you shiny and chrome, or mediocre). Albert Hanna (another great local, shows up in the finals as well) put the nails in the coffin for Scaverous with his feat through 8 focus camp - definitely not mediocre. Notably I could have won, as I could have just dominated one of the flags the turn before his final one, but I’m a huge moron and mispositioned. Highlights from the game: turn one he moves double murderponies up the flanks very aggressively, and I eat 8 of the 10 Cygnar light cav, gaining 3 souls in the process; TK x 5 for 4 banes and his dynamo and killed it with 4 backstrike bane charges. Overlords and Croe’s Cutthroats continue to impress the hell out of me by doing so, so, much work on the flank.

Denny1 vs Ossyan – Outlast

Ossyan is super strong now you guys. Denny did her best to stay outside of the range of Riflemen shooting her in the face (from 24 damn inches away!). The assassination failed on the Ossyan feat turn with me camping 4. The new reinforce rules are pretty great for Denny. Nightmare moved up opposite his Hyperion (Preyed) to hopefully knock it out. Feat turn saw the Hype move forward to just within 5” of Denny after getting crippling grasp removed and then getting quickened. Rolled a boxcars for the hit (he needed a 16) and nearly one shot her. Thankfully her def 16+Concealment managed to save her the rest of her 4 boxes. Next turn Nightmare kills the Hype with the assistance of some 4 dice charges from Croe’s and a Parasite. Clean up, get up to 5 CP the final turn. Madelyn made her first appearance of being amazing at keeping Denny safe here, that’ll show back up in the first finals game.

Denny1 vs Ossyan – Linebreaker

This is the scenario our meta has affectionately named “Roll Dice and Tie” in honor of a certain old 40k scenario. I was facing off against Ossyan, with so much gun. He had gun, then used more gun. I quickly surmised that the only way I was winning this was on the scenario, and with all of the stealth I had, and with him having no real way to bypass it, I knew my path forward was clear. Everything ran forward every turn as far as possible into the waiting arms of his gun line. He turtled up as hard as he could, but did not eliminate enough of my infantry on the approach. On my second turn I get everything in place, and on the third turn, I clear off both his flags, kill the objective with Nightmare, and dominate one flag with Denny, and feat on nearly his entire army. 4CP, pass turn. He looks at me, and jovially calls me an asshole and shakes my hand.

MASTERS

End the day 3-1 and just BARELY slipping by to qualify on account of my strong tiebreakers.
Finals! I made it! I only made it past the first round, playing a Kaelyssa player, and then I ran into a Menoth player that some of you may have heard of, Mike Puryear. I hear he’s kind of a big deal ;) This was a three list format.

  • Denny1
    • Madelyn
    • Deathripper
    • Deathripper
    • Nightmare
  • Croe's Cutthroats
  • Satyxis Blood Witches + Hag
  • Satyxis Blood Witches + Hag
  • Nyss Hunters
  • Scaverous
    • Skarlock
    • Deathripper
    • Deathripper
    • Erebus
  • Croe's Cutthroats
  • Bane Warriors
  • Satyxis Raiders + Witch
  • Cephalyx Overlords
  • Cephalyx Overlords
  • Machine Wraith
  • Skarre2
    • Withershadow
    • Deathripper
    • Kraken
  • Machine Wraith
  • Necrotech
  • Satyxis Raiders + Witch
  • Satyxis Raiders + Witch
  • Raider Capt
  • Raider Capt

I regret taking Skarre2 in this instance, as if I had Skarre1, I might have been able to pull off a victory against Puryear, and functionally they do much the same thing. I expected to see more infantry today, after the ripples of talk about the spammy lists I and others took the two days before.


Denny1 vs Kaelyssa – The Pit

A fantastic game against my opponent, who I unfortunately cannot remember! This was a grindy game, ending with me only having 2 minutes remaining on deathclock, and winning on assassination. His list was Kae, Hydra, Imperatus, Discordia, 3 Arcanists, Fane Knight Skeryth Issyen, full Sentinels, 2 Soulless Escorts, and a unit of Stormfall Archers (to best of memory).  I went first, moving aggressively up the table with a bunch of stealth and high defense infantry. Imperatus was preyed by Nightmare, and Nightmare found a cozy spot opposite him behind a wall. His turn one gets him a couple of my Nyss from Stormfall scatters and a single Croe’s. He feats defensively, places the Sentinels under minifeat in the zone and passes turn, wanting the alpha strike. My turn, I think for a bit, and put Denny on a hill just inside the zone, and counter feat. Witches move up on either side of the zone, just outside Sentinel threat range even with Vengeance, Croe’s continues to move up the left flank, dancing with the Hydra that is over there. Nightmare leaves the comfort of his wall to get 6.5 inches away from Imperatus making him safe next turn and making Imperatus the opposite of that. Nyss manage to get a single shot at an Arcanist through stealth, and miss him. I move Madelyn up for next turn’s shenanigans. His turn he moves Discordia and Hydra further out on flanks to get Nyss and Croe’s respectively, Imperatus durdles, unable to really do much of anything because of the feat. Stormfalls manage to ping another couple Nyss with scatters. More Sentinels in the zone. My next turn, Denny and the Witches get in there and wipe out all but a handful of Sentinels, even collecting some souls, and now that the heavies are out on the flanks, I move Madelyn up and Parlay to seal the deal for next turn. She’s in range of nearly all his infantry, making both of them nigh-invulnerable. Nightmare handily takes out Imperatus with the help of the ‘no heal’ bubble from one Hag, Croe’s continue playing on my opponent’s side of the board, dancing with the Hydra. His turn, Disco takes out more Nyss, remaining Sentinels take out what Witches they can in the middle and try and block LOS to Kae, as Denny is now only about 8” away from her. A couple more Cutthroats die when he takes off to get away from Denny and she shoots some of them. Final turn has Denny get within range of Scourge, full boost it, toss a venom for good measure and then the Cutthroats fill her full of bolts until she dies. Win!

Skarre2 vs Severius2 – Linebreaker

Mike Puryear is an obviously great competitor, so this one was going to be tough no matter what. With the scenario being what it was, I knew this was only going to be won on assassination, if it was even possible. I choose Skarre2, hoping that I can get something up there to seal the deal. He gets an early Rebuke on one of my units of Raiders, making them all but useless, clears the other unit with a combination of jacks and his feat (omg his feat), leaving only Skarre herself and her unhurt Kraken to try and get in there to punch Sevy to death. Spoiler alert! It didn’t work. I was dice +6 and managed the unlikely event of rolling 2 out of 3 8s to hit him, but his ability to spend a focus and cancel a damage roll, and the remaining focus he had and my bad damage rolls got him through. Sevy2 is super, super rough. I want to devote a whole article about how bonkers good this guy is. Seriously, Cryx players, or any person who plays this game, check out his card and the interactions he can get through the various bonded models and battlegroup. You WILL be seeing him, probably in every Menoth pairing. I am refraining from listing Mike’s list in deference to his request as he’s on the WTC team this year for the US.


And so ends Texicon. Again, I want to thank Apollo for putting on a great event, and the staff of Texicon for putting up with our ridiculousness. Ride Shiny and Eternal Always!