ToMB post 3: Rumble under the gaslight game 2 – the clash of the titans

Hi folks,

We return to game 2 of Rumble under the gaslight 2. Due to some ridiculous quirk of fate, I found myself on the top table. I was playing against Brooks, who I’ve met a few times, but never played before, that’s always a good thing. Brooks and I are both fairly…er… “laid back”, players. This was certainly going to be an interesting matchup. I don’t think anyone at the event could quite believe that 2 players who’re usually somewhere between midtable mediocrity and the spoon contest were on the top table, but there you go.

 Game 2 – Reconnoiter vs Rasputina

Crew/Scheme selection

The strategy and scheme pool had me somewhat worried. Reconnoiter doesn’t feel like something Perdita should want to do, as she doesn’t have many models to play with (certainly not using the starter box). The plan was therefore simple. Play it like beatdown. Once again, to get control of the game, I’d have to take off as many enemy models as possible, as quickly as possible in order to balance things out.

I went with the same set up as in game 1, except Perdita had the upgrade which improves family willpower nearby, and makes her immune to tests required to target models. Brooks took Rasputina with a ton of upgrades (armour of December, black jokers are red jokers, and arcane reservoir), the Wendigo, an ice golem with imbued energies, 3 ice gamin, and a December acolyte.

“Make them suffer” (kill enemy minions and peons) was available, and as the only qualifying model in the Perdita boxset is the enslaved nephilim (with rubbish defence and wounds), I knew he would be hunted for the whole game (as he was basically worth 3 VPs). On the plus side, game 1 had shown me that Perdita and Francisco were perfectly capable of killing minions, and as I wanted to get his models off the board asap anyway, I figured I’d take “make them suffer” as well to balance the equation. Once again, Assassinate was available this game, and with the Ortegas having shown me just how well they kill things in game 1, I thought it was a fair idea to try to kill Rasputina this game too. As it happened, Brooks also went for Assassinate on Perdita, which would later turn into a proper climactic western style showdown… but we’ll get to that in due time.

 

The game

The game opened up fairly cagey, with no one making any particularly big plays, until I ran Perdita into the middle of the board to shoot the December acolyte (see my post on acolytes to see why it needed to die in turn 1). This was the first demonstration of why I think trick shooting is a very good upgrade for Perdita. The Acolyte was partially behind a building, so she chose to ignore the cover, and annihilated it in fairly short order. This also limited Rasputina’s range for turn 1 (as she can cast spells through friendly models).

Turn 2 saw Santiago (who had somewhat foolishly pushed forward a bit too far) get a big pile of freezy spells to the face, his hard to kill and some very lucky card flips being the only thing which kept him alive. Perdita then continued as she meant to go on, and used trick shooting to ignore armour, and annihilated the ice golem. I then planned to critically damage an ice gamin using Nino, so that Francisco could finish it off (to get me a VP for “make them suffer”), but Nino selfishly got a double critical strike trigger (+2 damage), and then a double severe on a negative flip, to annihilate the gamin in 1 shot… jerk. This also left Francisco free to double walk into one of Brooks’ quarters, contesting it with a Wendigo, and denying him the point for the strategy.

Turns 3 and 4 saw various bits of manouvering and the death of Santiago and Nino (Rasputina is rather killy), but not before Nino had given her a darn good shooting. Perdita performed some hit and run attacks, walking into the non-scoring zone in the middle of the board to shoot a gamin, and then running away again. Unfortunately, in turn 4 she failed to 1 shot a gamin, so she was left with the choice of staying in the non-scoring zone (leaving her exposed to all kinds of nasty death), but shoot the gamin again, or else run away to safety, but not get make them suffer. Eventually I decided that fortune favoured the brave, so shot it. This left Rasputina able to wander forward to zap Perdita repeatedly. After a barrage of icy death, Perdita still stood, with no soulstones, and 2 wounds left, but Rasputina was also out of soulstones, and not looking too healthy after Nino had shot her earlier.

Turn 5, no soulstones, both masters damaged, staring at each other over the centre of the board, both with assassinate… the quick draw. Unfortunately for Rasputina, Perdita is the quick draw queen, and hastily drew a 13 for initiative. Two distinctly mediocre shots later, and Rasputina was hurt bad, but still standing. I looked at my hand and saw the highest card I had was an 8. It’s not awful, but not a certainty by any stretch of the imagination. Time for hero’s gamble (discard the cards in your hand and draw that many new cards), because I like to live life on the edge.

I’m pretty sure I managed to keep a straight face as I drew a severe, something else, and a red joker (having discarded the black joker at the start of the turn), and proceeded to get to ridiculously high scores… because I could. Suffice to say Rasputina died pretty quickly. Francisco then managed to hunt down the wendigo (eventually) and bagged me the last point for make them suffer.

As the dust settled, I had full points for the strategy, full points for make them suffer, and 2 points for assassinate (Raspy only died on turn 5). Brooks had 1 point for the strategy, Perdita was badly wounded, but still alive, and the nephilim had cowered behind a big hill all game. A 9-1 win for team Perdita. On a side note, I had now killed everything which had been set up against me all tournament. I had managed to totally wipe out both opposing crews, and both times, I’d only lost Nino and Santiago. Who says playing it like beatdown doesn’t work?

It was only chatting afterwards that I realised precisely how much this game could’ve swung the other way. I knew the Rasputina – Perdita shoot out was a big 2 point swing (indeed Brooks nearly got 3 points for it in turn 4) where it could’ve gone either way purely on initiative, giving the winner of that duel control of the rest of the game. However there were a lot of other points I didn’t even notice. In turn 1, if Perdita hadn’t killed off the Acolyte, she was going to get shot by the Acolyte and have all sorts of spells thrown at her through the acolyte in the next activation. Brooks also had another nasty ice mirror plan set up using the gamin which nino accidentally killed (I didn’t even want to kill that one!) in the activation immediately after I accidentally killed it. If either of these situations had gone the other way, Perdita could’ve been blasted off the face of the board, and then most of the killing I did through the game wouldn’t have happened, and it would’ve been a very different story.

 Crew thoughts

Looking at the crew again, not much had changed in my opinions from game 1. Perdita and Francisco (particularly Perdita) seem to be pretty nice powerhouses (having stats with 7s is MASSIVE), relatively slow at getting places, but with good range it’s not so important (if you’re just trying to kill things). Nino still seemed to be lacking somewhat in the shooting front. It feels like he can fairly reliably hand out 3 or 4 damage, but without much need for his spotter ability (to stop people interacting) I was really struggling to find his soulstones worth in him. Papa just never got going in this game. If he had gone out in the open Rasputina would’ve killed him (or paralyzed him) faster than you can say “I really really really really really hate paralyze”. The nephilim cowered, but even if it hadn’t been cowering, it would’ve been left behind by turn 2. The nephilim seems to suggest that maybe I should be doing more side to side movement, rather than forward movement. Definitely requires further investigation.

Then we get to Santiago. I just don’t think I understand him. He took some pot shots at things, but did very little productive damage, then he got munched again (admittedly, by the opposing master… again). One thing I thought of since last post, is that I don’t have any “standard” minions (eg death marshalls or witchling stalkers) to chuck around, so I may have subconsciously been using Santiago as one of those (as he’s a bit survivable, and a fairly good “all rounder”). Further investigation required.

Back to the tournament anyway, and I’m now sitting on 2 wins and lots of VPs, which leaves me on the top table again for the final game. In fact, not only am I back on the top table, but I’m leading the whole tournament by a couple of VP difference!

… no, I don’t know what’s going on either.

We’ll return to game 3, and an overall summary of my thoughts on my crew in the next instalment (maybe even with the ever-promised pictures of the crew).

Until next time

Dave/sssk

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