Today, as promised, I’ll be talking about my experiences at Jimmyfaux (seriously, what was the tournament actually called!?). For those of you who don’t know how I got on, I’ll leave the end result till the end (like any great wordsmith, I know how to build suspense).
It was held at the outpost in Sheffield (my home store), by that lovely Jimmy bloke. After a few teething problems (the guy who was supposed to be sorting tables etc fell off his bike on the way there and spent the day in hospital!), the day ran pretty smoothly with few issues (that I noticed). So props to Jimmy for running another ace tournament (which he didn’t win this time!!!). There were 18 players there, with a few new faces, and many of the regulars.
So without further ado, let’s get to the games…
Urghhhh, reckoning. If I had my way, reckoning would be put in a barrel with an assortment of bricks, lead weights, and cement, and would be thrown into the deepest part of the ocean… on fire (just in case). I really don’t like this strategy. I mean REALLY don’t like it. Did you get the gist of the paragraph? Then I’ll move on.
For reckoning I was drawn against Graham, who is very new to the scene. He was using Lynch, Huggy (I may pass comment on my opinions about Huggy later, or in another post if they get too verbose), 2 Beckoners, 2 illuminated, a young nephalim, and 2 terror tots (and maybe some other bits) and 3ss in cache. I took Marcus (trail, hunger, feral), Myranda (Imbued E), Acolyte, RSR, 2 molemen, and Miss step (Imbued E) and 7ss in cache. We both took breakthrough and protect territory.
I went for a strong left flank to push for schemes (I had little way to stop him getting his as he was faster and more numerous than me), and then was planning to drop in with Marcus and Miss step as and when they were needed to kill stuff. Unfortunately I suffered a few issues. One was temporarily forgetting the plan, and sending Myranda and the RSR the wrong way. That was my bad, I’ll accept responsibility for that. However…
Disclaimer: here follows a rant which closely fits an analogy about workmen and tools.
… My deck had been bribed, and was working from turn 1 for the enemy. I had 7ss in my cache and used 5 of them on drawing cards at the start of the turns, and my hands were STILL awful. Every flip was 1 below what I needed. It got to the stage that Miss Step targeted an illuminated (wp 6 vs terrifying 10), failed the flip, and with 4 cards in hand (after using a SS at the draw step) still couldn’t cheat in the 4 she needed to pass! Then in the final turn, with Marcus on 10 wounds, and a moleman left, I’m losing 8-7, a young nephalim saunters over, and just triggers extra attacks from every flip (including a red joker damage) to kill Marcus, leaving the moleman open to 100 lures and Jacob ready to munch him (taking me to a 9-4 loss! Which will become significant later on… see the conclusion).
Oh did I not mention how Huggy (the 0ss model) survived 4, 4/4/6 attacks from Marcus, a 1/4/6 attack from an acolyte, and 2 2/3/6 +poison attacks from RSR… WHILE HE WAS ON NEGATIVE FLIPS FOR ALL DUELS!!!! Indeed it was only the RSR which did any damage at all thanks to 3 severe soulstone preventions, and a miss from Marcus and the acolyte!
The jackalope seems very expensive for 2ss, that’s all I’ll say (that’s a lie, expect a rant about free models… one free model in particular… in a post in the not too distant future).
Anyway, back on track. That was all a rant about my luck (and a little bit about Huggy). Graham was a really great opponent, and I think if I hadn’t been betrayed by fate itself, the game would have been much closer, and a great challenge for both of us (though I think he did outplay me, and deserved the win). Hopefully we can have another game at another tournament, as I thoroughly enjoyed playing against him. I was also very disappointed in myself for getting frustrated at the unadulterated awful luck (I may even have sworn once…), so apologies to Graham as I seemed quite a duck (vowel censoring) particularly toward the end of the game. It wasn’t aimed at you, promise. … No, seriously, all of that ranting was about the fickle nature of random chance, Graham’s a top bloke.
In terms of my crew, I was pretty happy at my choices. I was very tempted to take Joss instead of Miss Step, but in the end the board being fairly sparse across the whole centre, combined with Miss Step’s nimble (potentially helping to put out scheme markers) forced my hand. I think I would have taken the same crew again for that setup. I’m really starting to like my base crew. Though it’s a little pricey, it does a lot for me, and there’s still 13-14 stones to play with.
Next up was Reconoiter, and at a glorious -5 VP difference, I was hoping to be up against someone of “my skill level” (ie somewhat laid back). I wasn’t let down, as (yet again) I was up against Adrian from my local group (I played against his Ophelia at Halifaux). I was really in 2 minds about this one. I could either take Marcus and try to kill gremlins, or I could take Ramos and produce spiders. In the end I went for Ramos, as Gremlins are surprisingly good at killing big expensive stuff, and I fancied trying him out again.
Adrian took Sommer, Lenny, Pigapult, slop hauler, and the rest of the points in bog standard gremlins. He took distract and plant explosives. I went for Ramos, Electric creation, Acolyte, metal gamin, 2 molemen, 5 ice gamin. I really didn’t like the scheme pool for this one, but opted for outflank and distract (hopefully I’d have models to spare for outflank, and distract was obvious).
This was another model mill. Over the course of 4 turns (it took a while, so we didn’t get to 5) I made 10 extra spiders, and Adrian made a ton of gremlins/pigs. We both got full points for schemes (Adrian showed me exactly how easy plant explosives is… I may well be using that in the future), and I managed to overwhelm the gremlins in their half on turns 3 and 4, netting me a 9-7 win. Not a single Gremlin foot (or trotter) set foot on my half of the board all game.
It would have been much closer (maybe even a win for Adrian) if Ramos and the metal gamin hadn’t been able to magnetise to the pigapult and kill it, preventing gremlins from being flung into other board quarters. Man of the match for me was the acolyte… oh no, wait, that’s a lie. The acolyte did precisely nob all. It held a quarter for me and walked 4 inches once… because it could.
This game Ramos seemed a bit more interesting, pulling various little tricks (shooting gamin to blow them up, to kill gremlins, and provide scrap for spiders all in 1 go etc) and generally being rather handy. He still needs more table time, but I think I could grow to like him quite a bit. I was fairly happy with the crew, but I’m intrigued to see how he works with some bigger models.
This left me on a win and a loss, with -3vp difference… the bottom end of mid table mediocrity beckons.
In contrast to reckoning, I like turf war quite a bit. This one was particularly intriguing because of the schemes. They were line in the sand, assassinate, bodyguard, frame for murder, and make them suffer. Why are they intriguing? Well only line in the sand benefits from being announced. There’s lots of potential espionage to be had when you don’t announce any schemes.
Anyway, this game was against Greg. He’s one person who’s been at most of the tournaments I’ve been to, but I’d never actually played against him, so I was really pleased to be playing against him at last. Greg had been playing Lynch all day, but decided to crack out Lilith for this game (his second game with her in second edition I think) for a change. I contemplated Ramos, looked again at the schemes, and went for Marcus. As a disclaimer, I think if Greg had used Lynch, this game would have ended very differently, and if we hadn’t both been on the verge of collapse, the game would’ve gone very differently too. I really hope I can play Greg at the start of a tournament and see how we get on with functioning minds, as he was stupendous fun to play against.
Greg took Lilith, Barbados (what’s his real name?), Mature nephalim, Kade, a terror tot, and teddy. He then took frame for murder (mature nephalim), and line in the sand, which he announced. I went for Marcus (trail, hunger, feral), Joss (Imbued E, recharge soulstone), Myranda (pack leader, imbued E), RSR, acolyte, 2 molemen, make them suffer and frame for murder (acolyte).
At this point you can see that neither of us was quite pin sharp by the final game of the day. I think Greg took line in the sand to see if he could do it, and I took 2 molemen… when there weren’t any schemes on offer which molemen would help with (except line in the sand I guess). Also as you’ll quickly discover, Greg misreading make them suffer gave me… quite an advantage.
The first 2 activations of turn 2 basically won me the game. The acolyte shot the terror tot, guaranteeing me all 3 points from make them suffer, then Lilith went for a vengeance killing, and sliced the acolyte apart, guaranteeing me all 3 points for frame for murder. As soon as the tot died, Greg said “oh pants, I forgot the ‘no minions on the table’ clause of make them suffer”. Obviously if he’d remembered that, the tot would’ve hidden at the back of the board all game. From there on it was an uphill struggle for Greg (and we definitely weren’t playing “intense Malifaux”). I think Last game of the day syndrome for both of us, combined with a very long journey to the venue (for Greg) were starting to tell.
I was really pleased with Joss this game. I finally fulfilled “the Marcus dream” (or near enough). I out activated Greg enough to be left with Marcus and Myranda unactivated, and joss in a position to attack. Marcus then cast feral on Joss (making him a beast), darzhee’s chaunt (+ve attack and damage flips… the -ve defense flips didn’t matter as there was nothing to attack him), then alpha. Joss got a free activation, discarding imbued energies, and ripping into teddy. Myranda then funneled even more AP into him, getting (I think) 7 AP through Joss in 1 turn, 5 of which were attacks at +ve to hit and damage. In a later turn he survived the attentions of the mature nephalim and even got to use his reactivate ability. Very impressed with his resilience and hitting power, and he’s not as slow as I thought either. Expect to hear more from the chronicles of Joss.
It was pure luck which stopped Greg from getting frame for murder. Joss engaged in an orgy of destruction, killing Teddy and Kade, then got reduced to 1 wound by the mature nephalim (and so got reactivate) but was stood close enough to the neph that any attack would kill him with black blood. Logically, I should’ve moved away, then attacked. Instead, I thought “choke-slam sounds like a trigger I want to try”. In went the attack, failed to kill the neph, killed Joss (and missed the trigger)… ah well.
Molemen and Marcus then cleared up some scheme markers, and it ended a 10-3 win for Marcus.
I was pretty happy with the crew here too. Many of you might be thinking “it’s turf war, where the badgers is Cojo!?”. Well the scenery was not conducive to Gorilla antics. The turf marker was on top of a big height 2 climbable hill thing, and I figured it would be better to stop Greg from scoring points by killing his crew, rather than pushing them out (Play it like beatdown). If I did need Cojo, Myranda could always *BAMPF* into him anyway.
Ideally I would have dropped pack leader and recharge soulstone and brought in the Jackalope, but with make them suffer available, and plenty of models able to kill a small rabbit, it was too risky.
I think the acolyte might actually be the ideal model for frame for murder. It’s sufficiently horrendous that the opponent needs to kill it or take it out of the game somehow, but it’s immune to paralyzed, and is good enough in melee that it’s difficult to tie up without risking the blocking model getting killed.
It actually did very little in the first 2 games (got killed early first game, didn’t do anything second game) but is a fantastic threat.
So at the end of all that, I came in 8th/18, which is 6 higher than I’ve ever managed before (the 14th place glass ceiling comes crashing down)! What was really interesting though, is that if Marcus had survived in the first game (or at least taken more effort to kill) or if I’d remembered the moleman’s other 0 action (preventing him being moved by pushes/”moves”) so that I got protect territory and Graham didn’t get a point for reckoning, I would’ve been 6th (the difference between 8th and 6th was 3VP difference!)! More importantly, that would’ve put me above Jimmy (my local henchman, and destroyer of dreams). Well, there’s a target for next time.
Anyway, I was really happy with this tournament, and really enjoyed all my games (even getting slightly frustrated in the first one), Graham made it an enjoyable experience). Annoyingly, I’d really like to play in some more tournaments now, but unfortunately that just isn’t going to happen for quite a while. I’ll just have to resign myself to learning Ramos (and Raspy and Kaeris) better for whenever the next one is.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this little (massive) report. As ever, if you have any questions or comments, give me a shout on twitter, or post a comment here (questions are always good, as they give me a blog post without having to think of a topic).
Until next time
p.s. It’s now a day after I wrote the Huggy bit, so gut reaction has now died down. Unfortunately I’m still filled with rant rage, so expect that post sometime in the near future…