10 February 2011

Ghost town clash about treasures and turf

A battle report of a Malifaux game played last night at a friends house (the guy that got me into Malifaux to begin with and my most frequent Malifaux opponent).

Resurrectionists vs Arcanist crew



Location - Ghost town

Event – Heat Wave (-1 Wk/-1 Charge on 10+ at the end of each turn)


Resurrectionist objective: Reconnoiter . 4 VP for having models in all 4 quarters of the table at the end of the game. 2VP forhaving models in 3 quarters of the table at the end of the game.
Arcanist objective:  Treasure hunt. Capture the treasurein the middle of the board and bring it back to friendly deployment area to earn 4VP if carried by a friendly model.  2VP if the treasure is in friendly deployment but not carried by a model.
Crew composition

Arcanist
Marcus – Master
2x Ice Gamins
1x Ice Golem
2x Sillerud
1x Sabretooth Cerberus

Resurrectionists
McMourning –Master
Sebastian the morgue assistant
Mortimer the gravedigger
Bete Noir
1xRotten Belle
1xCanince Remains
1xCrooked Man


Comments on composition of both crews.

Arcanist,
Marcus and Arcanist units in general have the ability to cast two “0” cost actions, usually you are only allowed one such free action. Beside that the beast abilities of Marcus making are often a source of concern since he can cast various boost abilities upon himself to enhance his persona to fit specific situations better. Making him faster, more durable etc. In terms of enemy Masters I would rate him as “Good”. Good mix of abilities and actions that can be used both by himself and on friendly Arcanist units. The Ice Golem is a paint in the balls. It has “Armor 2” meaning it reduces all damage by 2 points. Making it VERY hard to bring down in regular combat with pretty much anything in the Resurrectionist crew. Ice Gamins (and Ice Golem) are another pain in the balls since they explode upon death and inflict 2 damage points (3 for Ice Golem) to anyone  standing within 2” from them. So you want to take care of these minions with ranged attacks – something the Resurrectionist kind of lack, being a close combat oriented crew. Sillerud beasts are VERY fast, since they can leap a long distance, and then use their remaining 2 actions to move at regular speed (or charge). Being companions they activate at the same time making them dangerous should they get into charge range from a low- mid level unit. Sabretooth is also very potent, it has lots of attacks, and is fast as hell. It’s not that hard to kill if you can start hitting it over the head. But timed right it can take care of most mid level units on its own.

Resurrectionist,
McMourning  is a superb close combat oriented master. McMourning cannot raise any undead except Canine Remains and the Flesh Golem. The trick is to exchange enough soul stones from his cache for Body Parts to be able to raise a Flesh Golem for free once you get the chance to do so. And as you work your way through enemies you will acquire even more body parts – used to speed up your own master or raise a second Flesh Golem if you are lucky (in one game I started with a Flesh Golem, got it killed, then raised 2 more before the game was over!). But the most important thing with McMourning is to get him into close combat fast, as he inflicts damage he heals himself. He should however not be left unsupported or charge into numerous enemy models on his own, or he will be in deep trouble. Ranged attacks are also dangerous. Bete Noir is a unit I used for the 2nd time this game around. First time I had no idea I could use her special rule to “bury” herself as her last “Slow to die” action upon being killed. This made her more durable.  Turned her into a very potent if somewhat expensive unit which requires lots of high end cards to keep her abilities supplied. You also need to babysit this unit a lot, with 4 wounds she dies VERY fast once she starts to take hits (1-2 hits and she’s dead).

About markers seen on the pictures. Grave markers = Corpse Counters, D10 dice to show number of wounds inflicted. D6 to show amount of Body Parts in models posession.

Turn 1
Corner deployment.
No heat wave. Resurrectionist initiative.

Not much happens. The Silleruds are quickly on top of the building with the objective. Remaining units of both factions make their way towards the middle of the board. My Rotten Belle manage to cast 1 Lure spell and move one Sillerud a bit closer to her general direction.

Turn 2
No heat wave. Arcanist initiative.


Silleruds snatch the treasure and jump away with it. Out of reach from anything the Resurrectionist gang can do. The Belle tries to lure the Sillerud with the treasure in his hands towards her but fails to cast the spell.

McMourning summons the Flesh Golem in peace, out of range from any enemy models charge range to take advantage of the slowed state of the newly summoned monstrosity. He then casts “Wrecked with pain” against one small Ice Gamin, inflicting 1 damage point due to armor. But gains one body part which will come in handy.

Since Bete Noir cannot be deployed in regular fashion but needs something to die before being “Drawn to death” the canine remains are sent on a suicide run vs the Sabretooth Cerberus – my intention was to get the dog killed and quickly kill the Sabretooth with Bete Noir once she appeared. However the Arcanist master Marcus charges the Canine remains and kills it! Even better – now Bete Noir appears and starts stabbing at Marcus, a much juicier target. She hits him twice out of three attempts, and inflicts a total of 7 damage!  Leaving the Arcanist master well bled, and with 3 wounds left to go before death.

Turn 3
No heat wave. Arcanist Initiative


Marcus heals himself regaining 2 wounds, bringing him up to 5/10 wounds. Bete Noir tries her best to slice him to pieces, and almost succeeds as the Arcanist master is left with one single wound after her attacks. The Sillerurds hand over the treasure to a Ice Gamin and turn back to attack Bete Noir. Hitting Bete Noir but failing to kill her. Sebastian the morgue assistant in turn charges and quickly kills the nearest sillerud with his excellent close combat skills, chopping off body parts in the process  to add to his own collection.

The Sabretooth charges and quickly manages to kill Bete Noir with a flurry of attacks from those 3 heads of his, but she manages to “bury” herself as part of her Slow to Die action and heal all wounds. She will reappear next time something dies.
Meamwhile a few yards back McMourning kills the previously wounded Ice Gamin. The Ice Golem fires off an ranged attack vs the Flesh Golem which takes 3 wounds. The Flesh Golem moves a bit closer to Marcus – ending within close combat range from the badly wounded master and uses its second action to slay him with a well placed blow. This attracts the attention of Bete Noir who is once again “Drawn to death”, appearing near Marcus corpse and immediately manages to slay the Sabretooth Cerberus  outright with the “Slit Juggular” trigger as the Arcanist opponent doesn’t have enough control cards or soul stones left to bypass the effect! This would be the first out of two brutal kills in this encounter.

Turn 4
No heat wave. Arcanist Initiative.


The Ice Gamin holding the treasure dodges back towards the friendly deployment, doing his part to secure the victory for his faction. Things look grim for the remaining Arcanist units. Master gone, and half minions slayed while the enemy force is intact albeit slightly beaten up.

The Ice Golem just stands in the middle of the patch, intimidating as hell with its 10 wounds and Armor 2. McMourning takes a deep breath and decides that he has the best chance to knock off some of those wounds, moving into close combat range he manages to pull off the “Dissection spell” which would inflict 1/5/10 wounds depending on whether weak/moderate/severe  card is drawn after a successful casting. The spell is cast, Ice Golem Fails to protect itself but the hit is weak enough to force McMourning to draw to damage cards and pick the lowest. McMourning draw 2x 13 (Severe damge)! And with his special skill to bypass Armor he actually manages to kill the behemoth on one blow – gathering 3 body parts and ending his activation outright!
The Flesh Golem then makes short work of the Sillerud beating it to death.

Turn 5
Heat wave! Resurrectionist initiative


The Resurrectionist units spread out to cover all 4 quarters of the table. Bete Noir and McMourning move after the Ice Gamin which has reached its own deployment zone. McMourning uses his gathered body parts to enhance speed and runs like the devil after the small Ice minion. Flinging his scalpel and inflicting a hit he manages to pull himself the last few yards into base contact with the Ice Gamin before his activation ends.

Turn 6
No heat wave. Arcanist initiative

Final turn. Both crews have 4VP at the moment. Killing the Ice Gamin would make for a 4-2 VP victory for the Resurrectionist faction though. Ice Gamin reduces McMourning to 1 single wound!

McMourning fails to kill the little bastard in his activation and the games ends a very VERY close Draw in terms of VP. Though the Arcanist crew was annihilated.

.........................
Some thoughts on my Resurrectionists.
OK so I’m now convinced that Bete Noir IS worth her 9 points but is very difficult to handle and requires a good set of cards in your Cheat Fate hand to pull off her abilities. But man does she kick ass. Her combat and defense stats are very high compared to most Malifaux units. Her main drawback is her pathethic 4 wound stad. She dies fast! And ranged combat/spells in combination with no cards on your hand to bury her will cripple your faction of 9 Soul Stones worth of units!
Handle her with care and it might pay off well.

Sebastian is the best unique character in the Resurrectionist crew that can be bought. He is a super reliable close combat monster, able to kill low/mid/high end monsters on his own with the amounts of attacks and damage he can dish out. This can become a drawback for the Resurrectionist faction where most minions have weak/moderate closecombat abilities. You tend to rely on Sebastian getting into close combat a lot to clear the way and create corpse counters / gather body parts.

I don’t really have a favorite master for my faction. McMourning, Nicodem and Seamus are all good in their own way and I like all 3. All 3 work differently and focus on different aspects, Close Combat/Spellcasting/Ranged attacks. Without having all that detailed knowledge about the masters of other factions I would still dare to say that the Resurrectionist faction does sport a very good lineup in terms of leadership.

Mortimer. This Unique character, I don’t get at all. What is his deal, how do you use him and for what? He seems to have a lot of so-so abilities. And frankly his cost of 7 Soul Stones compared to Sebastian’s 6 is a joke. He can’t fight as good, his spellcasting is average, his abilities don’t really give you that much of an tactical advantage. I will probably not use this guy again. I’ve tried him in a few games but it ends up being a 7Soul Stone handicap.

My Resurrectionists will face the Guild this weekend as my friend has become frustrated with his Arcanist crew. And honestly my crew has more trouble with the ranged attack oriented Guild then the spellcasting/close combat oriented Arcanist faction. At least in terms of what I have been facing so far.

No nagging about the rules this time around, pretty much settled for the silly “straight line charge” from last game. The only thing that was discussed was whether or not Bete Noir could use her "Drawn to Death" two times per turn or not. There is nothing about her not being able to do so in the rulebook, the FAQ or the Errata document. Sure it feels a bit too powerful - but at the same time this requires perfect timing and good cards in your hand to make use of her and actually keep her in play.

Finding the explanation for small special rules such as “Paralyzed” is still a bloody nightmare and takes WAY too much time. For this weekend I’ll prepare myself for this by printing out the Wyrd Games official Crib Sheet. Hopefully that will save us half an hour or more.


I will write a guide to Malifaux this month so that those of you who know little or nothing about this game will get an idea what it's all about.




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