Warmachine / Hordes battle report: Minions vs Mercenaries (75 points); 17Jun2019

For various reasons I haven’t been playing Warmachine for several months, but I got the opportunity to head over to Joe’s place again and get another game in with my Minions.

Game 5 – King of the Hill vs Joe’s Mercenaries


Minion Army – 75 / 75 points
[Theme] Will Work for Food

[Jaga-Jaga 1] Jaga-Jaga, the Death Charmer [+27]
– Blackhide Wrastler [16]
– Swamp Horror [15]
– Swamp Horror [15]
– Gatorman Soul Slave [0(5)]
Brun Cragback [16]
Orin Midwinter, Rogue Inquisitor [0(5)]
Rorsh [15]
Totem Hunter [0(6)]
Farrow Valkyries [8]
Greygore Boomhowler & Co. (max) [17]

It’s the same list as before, except that now I actually have the correct miniatures for everything (though some of them are borrowed). At least in theory I have a Dr Arkadius list to pair with it, but I haven’t actually put that on the table at yet and didn’t really plan to, regardless of what Joe was bringing here.


Mercenary Army – 75 / 75 points
[Theme] The Irregulars

[Fiona 1] Fiona the Black [+27]
– Toro [13]
– Toro [13]
Alten Ashley [0(6)]
Eilish Garrity, the Occultist [0(5)]
J.A.I.M.s [0(5)]
Alexia Ciannor & the Risen [10]
Idrian Skirmishers (max) [15]
– Idrian Skirmisher Chieftain & Guide [5]
Idrian Skirmishers (max) [15]
– Idrian Skirmisher Chieftain & Guide [5]
Kayazy Eliminators [5]
Kayazy Eliminators [5]
Lady Aiyana & Master Holt [8]
The Commodore Cannon & Crew [7]

Joe is at least as much of a faction butterfly as me. In the time since I last played even a single game of Warmachine, he has spun through Khador and Circle before coming back to Mercenaries.

I win the roll off and choose to go first. My vague plan is to hide Jaga Jaga behind the house, hold the right zone with the Wrastler and the left with the two lesser Warlocks, then bully the centre with anything I have left. My Totem Hunter Preys the right Idrians. They Prey the right Swamp Horror, the left Idrians Prey Brine and JAIMS Preys the Totem Hunter. This might get messy…

Turn 1: Minions
Everyone runs forward. Brun casts Stonehold, Jaga Jaga casts Battle Host on herself and Grave Wind on the Totem Hunter. Brun and Rorsh are a bit circumspect and decide to make some use of the cloud for this turn before being forced to advance into the teeth of the Idrian guns.

Turn 1: Mercenaries
Alten Ashley saunters forward and slaps Grievous Wounds on Lug, and some of the leading Idrians take pot shots at it too. Fiona puts Roth’s Mercy on the right Idrians and Occultation on herself. Everything moves up but Joe is careful not to offer me anything too juicy.

Turn 2: Minions
Jaga Jaga and Brun upkeep their spells. The Totem Hunter cuts down the two lead Idrians and Sprints off to hide behind the forest. Jaga Jaga casts Signs and Portents from the comfort of her little shelter behind the house (obviously I should have done this before using the Totem Hunter but I guess he didn’t need the help). The Boomhowlers mostly run; one misses an opportunistic swing at a nearby Idrian. Lug kills one and moves back to the edge of the Zone with Return, and finally Orin zaps three Idrians on my right.

Turn 2: Mercenaries
Fiona upkeeps Roth’s Mercy but drops Occultation. The Commodore Cannon kills a couple of Boomhowlers by slamming one into another. The right Idrians get a few models into the range to do a CRA on the Totem Hunter and roll the exact number of boxes to kill him in one go (JAIMS swaps Prey to the right Swamp Horror). Alten Ashley continues to pump bullets into Lug, crippling his Spirit and making me sad. Over on the left, the Idrian and a Thrall kill a few more Boomhowlers; Lug does get an entertaining Countercharge / Return combo to eat a cheeky Idrian though. Fiona goes quite far forward and Feats. No-one scores.

Turn 3: Minions
It would be quite nice to get at Fiona while she’s so close but I can’t think of any realistic way to do it under her Feat and with a bunch of Risen in the way. Brun upkeeps Stonehold (in retrospect, I’m not sure why I bothered since nothing was looking like knocking him down) and Jaga Jaga upkeeps Battle Host. The Soul Slave sticks Ghost Walk on the Boomhowlers and they move in and deal with a couple of Risen (the only targets they were likely to hit under Fiona’s Feat). Jaga Jaga casts Signs and Portents and uses her Feat to kill all five remaining Boomhowlers in exchange for some tasty damage on Alexia and all four Kayazy Eliminators. On the right my Swamp Horror clears all the contesting Idrians since it is far enough away from Fiona to avoid her Feat. Rorsh kills a couple of Idrians on the left but mainly I back off on that side. I’m going to lose Lug so I just end up leaving him in the zone to contest it. I score the right zone; 1 – 0 to me.

Turn 3: Mercenaries
Fiona drops all her spells. Alten Ashley takes his customary shot at Lug and eventually the Idrians on that side of the board kill it. Eilish puts Puppet Master on Fiona. She drops a Valkyrie to Tough with Chasten (burning the Puppet Master re-roll on damage) then puts Curse of Veils on the Swamp Horror and backs right away. Sadly, taking down the Valkyrie means that I can’t Shield Guard the Commodore Cannon’s shot so it slams the Swamp Horror back out of the zone. A random shot from an Idrian deals with the knocked down Valkyrie and JAIMS comes in to kill a second on the other side of the building. Joe scores for the left zone, centre zone and flag; 3 – 1 to him.

Turn 4: Minions
I finally realise the Stonehold is not helping me so drop it. Jaga Jaga upkeeps Battle Host though; it is free, after all. She heals the crippled system on the left Swamp Horror and casts Signs and Portents. The right Swamp Horror kills the contesting Idrians but apparently rolling an 8 und Signs and Portents to hit JAIMS is just out of the question so eventually the Blackhide Wrastler has to come in and deal with her. Orin zaps the Toro just to get an electroleap to kill a couple of Risen; I’m also sort of hoping that the Toro will take the bait to get Orin so I can have the Wrastler deal with it. The Soul Slave tags a Thrall with Bone Shaker but sadly a Risen free-strike kills it before I can take a cheeky swing at Holt. The other Swamp Horror comes back into the zone and goes through a highly satisfying chain of pulls and overtakes to eventually kill both Aiyana and Holt. I probably would have been better dealing with the last Risen within 4” of the Flag so I could score, but I was on a roll and probably killing Holt was more useful in the long run. Brun kills a few Idrians and gets a lucky critical Stationary on the left Toro; sadly Brine can’t do more than scratch the paint on it. I score the right Zone; 3 – 2 to Joe.

Turn 4: Mercenaries
Fiona upkeeps Curse of Veils and allocates two Focus to the left Toro, which then shakes Stationary. Alten Ashley, a load of Risen and the right Toro combine to kill the Swamp Horror in the zone. Eilish puts Puppet Master on Fiona and teleports to the Flag. Fiona swaps Curse of Veils onto Brine and the combined efforts of the Toro and Idrians kill him off (the Idrians choose the last Valkyrie as their new Prey). The Commodore blows away the Soul Slave. Joe scores the left Zone and the Flag; 5 – 2 to him.

Turn 5: Minions
Jaga Jaga upkeeps Battle Host, paying an actual Fury for it this time like a peasant; she then casts Signs and Portents. Orin has had enough of the Toro ignoring him and the Commodore Cannon blowing up all my stuff so he kills two of the crew and toughs the third. The Swamp Horror kills the contesting Thrall. The last Valkyrie (hidden behind the building in the photos) kills two of the Risen she’s surrounded by to clear a lane for the Wrastler to get to Alexia. It only takes a single bite to end Alexia, then the Wrastler overtakes to kill a third Risen (Joe let me do this after I’d activated some other stuff because I couldn’t actually see the Risen doe to the building). Brun, clearly not in the mood for anyone’s nonsense after Lug’s demise, walks into the centre zone and combines Frost Hammer and his gun to kill five Risen and Eilish and get a cheeky critical Stationary on the central Toro. Rorsh gets to be the contesting piece on the left; he does finally gun down Alten Ashley though. I score the right Zone; 5 – 3 to Joe.

Turn 5: Mercenaries
Fiona allocates two Focus to the central Toro, which shrugs off Stationary. She planned to put Curse of Veils on the Wrastler but Orin’s presence will stymie that plan. Instead the Commodore takes a shot at Orin but luckily for me it misses. Fiona instead kills Brun with Chasten. The left Toro kills Rorsh and the loaded Toro combines with the remaining Idrians to put some damage into the Wrastler. Joe scores the left Zone and I get the right Zone; 6 – 4 to Joe.

Turn 6: Minions
Hmm, I am feeling like I’m in trouble here with so much of my army gone. On the other hand, the Mercenaries force isn’t looking much better. Jaga Jaga drops Battle Host and walks round to apply Ghost Walk to the Wrastler. She also applies Signs and Portents just to be sure. Orin boosts some Chain Lightning into Fiona to burn one of her camped Focus (and kill an Idrian in the process). Finally the Wrastler charges into Fiona and eats her in a single bite. Yummy. Minions win by assassination.

I’ve really missed playing Warmachine, especially against Joe. He was taking it pretty easy on me since I’m quite rusty and very kindly pointed out some obvious things that I was missing; this is really helpful for my learning as it allows me to see how things look from his side of the board too. Things I learned:

  • Lug is a massive bullet-sponge against Joe and yet again didn’t really get to do anything. I guess that I was taking those shots (especially Alten Ashley’s) anyway so someone was going have to take them.
  • Contesting Zones seems to be a problem for me since most of my pieces are quite valuable. And the only jamming I have (Boomhowler and company) tend to get any survivors of the opening rounds evaporated by my own Feat on either turn 2 or 3. On the basis that I theoretically would use Dr Arkadius to cover a more elite Battlegroup-heavy match-up, perhaps I should consider dropping one of the lesser Warlocks to load up on some more infantry. I am considering either Nyss Hunters or yet more Valkyries for this role. I would be happy to read any advice from others.
  • Positioning for the Valkyries (and Orin) is quite precise and important. I’m still working on this but I did feel that at least in this game Joe had to work around them a little; therefore they must be closer to being the right places.
Categories: Battle reports, Hordes, Warmachine | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Warmachine / Hordes battle report: Minions vs Mercenaries (75 points); 17Jun2019

  1. Never played or heard of warmachine but after reading this I definitely will check It out.

    • It’s a good game. It’s well-enough known that if you look around on the internet you’ll find plenty of grognards stating that the game is terrible and in the final death-spiral, but I’ve been reading that about Warhammer 40K for about 20 years and it’s doing fine. Locally (Scotland) there is quite a big Warmachine scene.

      You should definitely give it a go; I’d love to read your take on it.

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