Friday, February 18, 2011

Tourney Report: Warpcon Game 3

Remember: there's no such thing as bad press.
After the two wins I was put up on Table 3 for my 3rd game and I was up against Beasts of War's own Darrell. I had my eye on his army for a while as I figured it would be a tough nut to crack but if I played well I'd take it.

Despite it being a tough list I was happy that I didn't end up playing one of the 4 Mech-Guard (should that hyphenated?) lists that made up the Top 8 players at that stage. I'm well able to handle it but I really didn't want to have to play 2 or even 3 of them in a row.

Enough babbling, onto the game...

Darrell's list was:

Darrell shows his good side/feigns disinterest.
Rune Priest with Jaws, Lightning, Chooser

Arjac with 5 TDA Wolf Guard with Storm Shield and Wolf Claw
3 Wolf Guard
Lasplas Razor
3 Wolf Guard
Lasplas Razor
3 Wolf Guard

6 Long Fangs with 5 Rockets with Cyclone TDA Wolf Guard
Lasplas Razor
6 Long Fangs with 5 Rockets
6 Long Fangs with 5 Rockets

So a Wolf Guard list that had lots of firepower and an Arjac Deathstar. I'd have to hide or go first in order to silence his ranged threats and as long as Arjac was walking I'd simply avoid him until he got all up in my grille and I had to deal with him. With shooting.

Deployment (side shot)
My decision was made for me when Darrell won the roll off and elected to go first. No surprises there, especially when he built Mt. Long Fang in the centre of his deployment zone.

I have to admit that for the first time I saw all those Long Fangs go down I felt dread and knew this was what my opponents usually felt when they saw this: now I understand why Brian pees his pants.

Darrell's set up in the pic up above from L to R was:

Arjac & Wolf Guard, Long Fangs, Long Fangs with Cyclone WG and Logan and Rune Priest, 3 Wolf Guard, Lasplas Razor (it belonged to Long Fangs so that's why they didn't deploy in it), Moar Long Fangs, 2 Wolf Guard Lasplas Razors. 

Meanwhile my deployment was:
Long Fangs, Long Fangs, Long Fangs, Thunderlord (all out of LOS of Mt. Long Fang). Everything else was in reserve.

I ended up taking about 20 mins with my deployment to make sure everything was out of LOS of the central unit so I have to apologise to Darrell for taking so long. In the end I realised it would be faster to just ask him if he could see my stuff and I would simply move them until they were hidden.

I was willing to take the first turn of shooting and then ram all my Troops down his throat to grab the objective on my right. I was going to ignore Arjac and co as they were on foot and would be pinned in place by their objective so that left me with my army being able to focus all of its attention on the right-hand one defended by 2 Razors with 6 Wolf Guard and 6 Long Fangs. I figured I should be able to take that on and overwhelm it with Grey Hunters and the Lord as long as Logan and co don't move toward it to support it.

I rolled to seize the initiative.
Mistake - I rolled to seize the initiative.

I got a 6 and took the first turn. Just after I rolled it I remembered that going first in an objective isn't always a good idea. In fact, going 2nd against a shooty army is usually a good thing to do (especially Mech Guard) as it denies them one of their main advantages - being able to bring all their firepower to bear against a variety of targets and reducing enemy mobility. I had set up to go 2nd after being shot for a turn and had now hamstrung myself by having 1/3 of my firepower out of range of my intended target: the objective on the right. Whoopee.

Turn 1 
I can see you...but it doesn't matter if I can't hit for shit.
My shooting was abysmal as two of my units did nothing to their Razorback and Long Fang targets respectively although the unit on my left managed to save some face and destroy the Razor in the centre before the Wolf Guard behind it could hop into it.

Darrell's response was for his army to sit still and unload where possible which basically meant killing a pair of my central Long Fangs and one of the Lord's Wolves but having little effect otherwise.

So both of us had shooty armies that had both had pitiful 1st turn shooting phases. I was thankful to be still in the game despite rolling a spate of 1's and 2's in my 1st turn.

Turn 2
One thing I was worried about after taking the 1st turn was having my reserves arrive too early and get shot up preventing me from getting across the table. The other fear was that I'd have nothing til turn 4 or 5 and again, not get across the table. As a result, I wasn't too pushed about having my stuff arrive piecemeal as I'd simply push it all down one side and try give Darrell a few problems with target priority.

I got a single Speeder, two Rhinos (one with Rune Priest) and a Razor to come on: half went right and hid waiting for me to build up more units to push down that way while the latter half moved onto my objective to back up the Long Fangs.

In my shooting phase I managed to stun one Razor and take the lascannon off another while I scared Arjac and co with my left-hand squad of Fangs by peppering them with Frag missiles. At least they wouldn't be marching straight toward my central objective with their fecking 2+/3++ soaking up my Rocket shots.

Darrell shifted both of his central Long Fangs a bit and that was it. Oh, apart from my central Long Fangs being dismantled, reduced to two. One of which was the Pack Leader. Always first to die my ass...

Turn 3
Another Speeder showed up as did the final Rhino both of which went right. The Lord, a Rhino and a Speeder all pushed forward on the right-hand side so that I'd be able to at least get one of them across the board and hope to contest the objective at the end of the game.

I was hoping the Fangs would be able to put down some suppression fire but it was still more like impression fire. At least they manged to stop one of the fecking Razors shooting the Lord while the Rune Priest with Lightning, the last Rocket and the Razor in the centre managed to tag two of the Fangs on the right. One of which was the Pack Leader. I was not amused.

Logan's central unit moved back up the building while his mobile Razor shifted a bit. The Lord took a wound from Rockets, the Rhino was fine and the Speeder was taken out. Not too bad overall.

Turn 4
Now that the Lord was across the board I was able to throw him into combat with something. Finally. I needed a good Fleet roll to give me a choice of targets but rolled poorly so I was confined to attacking the Long Fangs. At least I'd be able to silence some enemy firepower. My Rhino was still moving too so it pushed forward but the lads stayed inside. It was a choice between staying inside, hopping out to take Melta shots at a Razor from behind the Rhino or hopping out and sprinting toward the objective.

The latter might see the unit shot at by exposing themselves, the penultimate one might dick me if the tank died as the unit could be tied up or cockblocked by the unit spilling out so it was the first option I went with as the Rhino had to be popped first before the unit could be shot. I could even hide them behind the tank if it got wrecked so they couldn't be shot by any other unit. There was also another unit in a Rhino pushing forward to support them.

My shooting was still pretty crap although I finally managed to silence his Razors (they had no guns left) and Immobilised them too. At least they wouldn't be able to shoot my Rhino. Neither would the Long Fangs as the Lord mangled them. I was hoping to put him out of LOS with a good consolidation roll but again I rolled poorly so knowing he would get gunned won I pushed him toward the central Fangs to draw fire away from the Rhino to buy time for the Grey Hunters.

Dobbsky (that reminds me of Ivan Dobksy actually) pounded the Lord until he fell over and shot a bit at my Razor but I passed the cover saves and suffered no damage.

Turn 5
Having sacrificed the Lord for the Grey Hunter's survival (as its an Objective game and the Lord wasn't scoring) I had a unit in a prime position and all I had to do was keep them alive. I hopped them out of their Rhino so they could assault the tanks and push both Wolf Guard units away from the objective. The Rhino then moved behind a Razor for some reason and I left the right-hand side open instead of blocking off access. I can't remember my reasoning but it must have seemed a good idea. It wasn't a good idea.

Mistake - I hopped the Grey Hunters out of their Rhino instead of parking it on the objective or getting them out and using it to park on the objective and block LOS to the unit.

I had another unit in a Rhino pushing forward so I was hoping for another turn to get them into position. Again my shooting was pitiful, mainly because I couldn't see anything but I wasn't that worried as things were out of their hands now anyway.

I had a dilemma here:
1. Attack both Razors with the Grey Hunters in combat and take them both out maybe pinning/killing the units inside and sitting on the objective with a cover save from missiles.
2. Shoot a Razor and assault the squad that fell out and although I was worried about the distance but at least I'd force the unit away from the objective.

In the end I went for the second option.
Mistake - I went for the second option.

I wrecked the Razor and the unit spilled out but ended up too far away for me to assault. They weren't pinned either.

Darrell's turn began with his Wolf Guard running around the side of their tank and assaulting the Grey Hunters after they were shot at by the Long Fangs (only one dead as I sucked dirt for a 3+ save).

In the photo on the left you can see the angle the 3 Wolf Guard are approaching from but what you can't see is the objective which is near the Razor on the left. Darrell very cleverly assaulted the unit and pulled them away from the objective so I had to win combat and force the unit to run away or be destroyed for me to at least contest it this turn. Having popped the unit's Wolf Standard I was confident of winning but we only caused 1 wound each with the Wolf Guard fluffing his attacks completely and the unit staying there.

I offered to roll for the game to end and I rolled a 2. Darrell had 2 objectives and I had one. It turned out I was out from the right-hand objectives by a few inches.

I was a bit gutted at the time but it was a great game that was well-played by Darrell that could have gone either way until the end so I wasn't complaining too much. I did pick up 5 points for my troubles so I hoped that would make a difference at the end. They all add up...

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