Warmachine / Hordes battle report: Minions vs Cygnar (75 points); 08Sep2020

I managed to squeeze in another game of Warmachine / Hordes, this time with Gareth. Spoiler alert – there is some seriously poor play from me here as I got confused on a rule.

Game 23 – King of the Hill (scenario 1) vs Gareth’s Cygnar


[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)]
Dahlia Hallyr [17]
Dhunian Archon [0(6)]
Hermit of Henge Hold [0(5)]
Rorsh [15]
Void Archon [8]
Void Archon [8]
Farrow Valkyries [8]

It turns out that Void Archons aren’t quite as good as I had thought since they can’t actually buy attacks using Soul tokens, but they’re definitely still good enough to put a pair of them in my list. I decided that a single Dhunian Archon was enough and swapped the second for the Hermit, who should hopefully assist with armour cracking a bit.


[Theme] Flame in the Darkness

[Stryker 2] Lord Commander Stryker [+28]
– Charger [9]
– Lancer [10]
– Ol’ Rowdy [18]
Alexia, The Undying [0(5)]
Black Bella, Duchess of Dread [4]
Grand Master Gabriel Throne [7]
Hermit of Henge Hold [5]
Thamarite Archon [8]
Thamarite Archon [8]
Field Mechaniks (min) [3]
– Morrowan Battle Priest (3) [0(6)]
Legion of Lost Souls (max) [18]
– Morrowan Battle Priest (3) [0(6)]
Order of Illumination Resolutes (max) [13]

This is the same list as Gareth’s last play with Flame in the Darkness. This time he was adamant not to give away a cheap assassination by just leaving Stryker too far forward. I’m actually not so worried about this list now as the lack of infantry on my side makes the Legion much less punishing – the ones I kill will mostly stay that way.

I win the roll off and decide to move first. Gareth gives me the bottom side which I think I would have picked anyway with the objective of hiding Jaga-Jaga in that neat pocket within the central zone but behind the forest. I put a lesser on each side to at least threaten to score the rectangular zones and the rest of my force stays central; I need to keep Jaga-Jaga able to cover as much ground as possible with Signs and Portents. Gareth puts the Legion on the right so that they can at least eat the Valkyries. The Resolutes take a position on the far right, presumably to cover for whichever light Warjack gets assigned to sit in there.

Turn 1: Minions
Needless to say, all my stuff runs up the board. In theory I stay out of threat range of the Resolutes’ shooting but in practice I don’t think that I can get in range anyway. The lesser Warlocks cast their upkeep spells and I’m sad to note that Dahlia’s will be of no use whatsoever against the onrushing Legion of Lost Souls. Jaga-Jaga casts Battle Host and puts Grave Wind on the left Void Archon.

Turn 1: Cygnar
Gareth’s stuff does likewise, moving up the board and spreading out a bit to minimise the number of models I can spray to death. Throne makes the Legion Tough and Stryker casts Deceleration.

Turn 2: Minions
I need to contest the central flag and make sure that the left zone isn’t too easy to score. Gareth helpfully has no Warjacks on the right so I don’t have to worry about bleeding points over there. I have to decide how to play the left zone. If I put Brine in there he’ll die for no gain so in the end I figure I’ll throw him forward and try to cause a bit of chaos. Jaga-Jaga upkeeps her spells, strolls forward and casts Signs and Portents. Skarath, the Valkyries and the Void Archon on the left kill a decent number of the Legion; the latter also Void Walks back to safety. The Void Archon on the right sprays across the Lancer, doing trivial damage to it but at least dropping one of the Battle Priests over there; it then Void Walks back behind the cloud (before I find that the Resolutes ignore clouds anyway). Brine get Rage, Rorsh uses Diversionary tactics to move him forward and then I throw him away. He scraps the Lancer and one of the Resolutes before accepting his inevitable fate. In the centre I out-threat Rowdy (apart from under Stryker’s Feat) so my battlegroup mainly hangs back. I also make a mistake with the Hermit, putting him 4.1” away from the Flag which is pretty stupid of me.

Turn 2: Cygnar
Vengeance attacks from the Resolutes hurt Brine and the Morrowan Archon eventually finishes him off. Stryker allocates two Focus to Ol’ Rowdy. The Resolutes shoot the Void Archon who thought that it was safe behind the cloud. The Charger considers lining up a shot to deal with it until I remind Gareth that he can score the left zone just by running into it. Stryker shuffles forward, Feats and casts Positive Charge on Ol’ Rowdy who runs to prepare for a Feat attack. Throne puts Stir The Blood on the Legion and they come forward (along with the Morrowan Archon) to beat up my Objective, Skarath and kill a Valkyrie. Gareth’s Hermit runs to the flag and thumbs his nose at my Hermit from 4.1” away. Feat attacks hurt the left Swamp Horror and both Valkyries and finish off my Objective; I get very lucky not to lose either Valkyrie to this. Gareth scores the left zone, Flag and Objective; 3 – 0.

Turn 3: Minions
I’m going to end up bleeding points on the left so I need to contest it now to get enough time to play the rest of this game. On the other hand, I can probably score on the right without too much trouble. Finally, I have to deal with Ol’ Rowdy before it kills Jaga-Jaga and I want to tidy up the rest of the Legion so that I don’t have to worry about those annoying buggers. I upkeep everything and Vengeance kills one of the Legion. Jaga-Jaga casts Signs and Portents and kills another. My Hermit risks the free strike moving past Ol’ Rowdy who, of course, gets the critical knockdown. At least he made it to within 4” of the Flag now. Over on the right, Skarath clears the zone and remembers to cast Counterblast this turn; the Void Archon and Valkyries finish off the last of the Legion so I ‘just’ have the Archon and Throne to worry about on that side. Rorsh moves to be just within the left zone and hucks some Dynamite at a Resolute. The Archon takes it with Shield Guard and I decide to change priority and boost damage on him with the Pig Irons too, leaving it on a couple of boxes. The Void Archon kills it but ends up with its back to the Resolutes which I sense will end poorly next turn. Then comes a huge error as I send the Wrastler in to eat the Hermit which of course triggers Dark Shroud and messes up the rest of my plans. To compound this, I get mixed up on how this works* and spend the rest of my turn fumbling Swamp Horrors around the place and still not quite finishing off Ol’ Rowdy, though I do cripple everything except the buckler. I score the right zone; 3 – 1 to Gareth.

*We left the Hermit icon in place with an aura marking what was affected by Dark Prophecy so it was clear what was in it. I got confused and played as though this was an actual aura and made moves to get out of this aura so that I could buy extra attacks. Gareth didn’t spot that this was my intention and instead assumed that I was trying some shenanigans with Pull.

Turn 3: Cygnar
Stryker camps all his Focus since the Charger is out of Control and Ol’ Rowdy’s Cortex is crippled. Bella hurts the Void Archon but doesn’t finish it off; the Resolutes can’t do it either but they do at least deal with Rorsh to clear that zone. On the right the Morrowan Archon kills my Void Archon and contests the zone. Throne tells Stryker to March, and then it’s go time. Stryker uses Velocity three times to get toward Jaga-Jaga, then Overloads. Hilariously, he rolls 1,1,1 for the strength boost, which not surprisingly is not enough to kill Jaga-Jaga especially as he also misses a couple of attacks. I figure that this is karma for my errors and misunderstandings next turn. We don’t both rolling out my entire army murdering a no-camp Stryker next turn; Minions win. For completeness, we re-rolled the strength boost and re-ran the assassination and a Str25 Stryker made short work of Jaga-Jaga.

That was a very fun game, as is every game I play with Gareth. My colossal blunder on turn 3 with Gareth’s Hermit was annoying and easily avoidable, but not nearly as annoying as my misunderstanding of the rules causing me to make a mess of the rest of my turn. Oh well, maybe it’ll help me to remember for next time. As a result, perhaps there isn’t a great deal to learn from the outcome here, but there are still lots of things that I did wrong during the game.

Things I learned:

  • Stryker’s personal threat is much further than I had understood. Admittedly I was planning to have something (probably a Swamp Horror) a bit further forward to body-block him but even so that is a scary distance that he can move and explode my Warlock.
  • My positioning of the Void Archons was not great. I feel like I should be Void Walking them to make better use of Dark Shroud, especially turn 3 onward.
  • This list really misses something cheap and disposable that I can use to contest scenario elements. Having to give up Rorsh in turn 3 just to avoid ceding a CP in the left zone felt very painful. I’m not sure if there is an easy answer here or if I need to rejig the list entirely to include some Gobbers or something.
Categories: Battle reports, Hordes, Warmachine | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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