Over christmas I convinced myself to go ahead and buy the models I was thinking of because well, I liked them. And I keep waiting for my children to get old enough for full on RPG's, though almost 2 and almost 4 is just not quite there yet. Especially not with models.
I digress though, so I stopped in at my old LGS while on vacation, as they have 20% off coupons when purchasing over $100 and well. I knew that was going to be easy. So here's what I found and purchased:
- Borka Kegslayer - I originally had planned on maybe a Madrak or Hoarluk list but in all my work prior building up a variety of lists I actually found that I became very intrigued by Borka's Family Reunion List.
- Mulg the Ancient - So there I was going to do a Borka theme list and Mulg appeared.. Okay theme out the window, unless I proxy him for something else. He's just so cool looking and his stats really intrigued me.
- Dire Troll Mauler - In an in your face army +3 strength animus combined with his own stats just spoke for themselves.
- Janissa Stonetide - Okay I'm already off theme and the more I looked at her the more intrigued I felt by what she brought and she's a very interesting looking model too. Nothing to prevent her from being a Trollkin Champion Hero sometime when I want a female champion either.
- Trollkin Champion Hero - Sadly they only had 1 at the store and for a Borka theme list I will want 2, but for now Janissa will be the second when I feel like running a theme. And the Hero is just well great.
- Trollkin Champions(5 man squad) - 2 attacks, weapon master, armor 18, 8 wounds each, enough said.
- Skaldi Bonehammer - Want those champions to be even more tasty angry eat them up? For 3 points you add in relentless charge and overtake, and you also pick up a model with counter charge. With the hero around he can even counter charge through his own guys.
- Stone Scribe Chronicler - He's not used in the non-proxied list but when Mulg is used as an Earthborn Dire Troll or a Dire Troll Bomber, and Janissa is a Champion hero he slots in perfectly bringing the theme to Tier 3. And the bonuses he brings along as well are just a little taste of something extra.
Strangely enough I didn't actually plan. I just said, "What looks interesting that I think I want." Luckily for me what they had and what I liked worked out to a perfect 35 point army without proxying. And also gives me a theme army with only a minimum of proxy(mulg as a dire troll, janissa as hero) and gives me a somewhat different feel to the army even.
So all the units are together but not painted. That's still to do but painted models have never been a requirement for me to play, and I've got a lot of painting ahead of me, between my Cygnar, which is just starting to get color, and this army it's going to be a while before they all get completed. Until then I wanted to try them out and see if this worked so down to my LGS I went today. I ran the list with models 1-7 exactly as they are. No theme in use.
I found there a perfect gentleman of an opponent who brought a cryxian army to the table. I'll be honest, I don't remember all of what he had, trying to rebuild the army for this article I'm sure I must be missing something but here's what I put together as what I faced:
- Lich Lord Venethrax
- Skarlock Thrall(I think that was what was hiding back there)
- Seether x 2
- General Gerlak Slaughterborn
- Bloodgorgers(6 man squad)
- Pistol Wraiths x 2
- Necrosurgeon & Stitch Thralls
First off, a good cryxian theme list, but I think I'm missing something. I'm not sure what and whatever it was it was hiding in back. All that advance deploymente and advanced move was going to give him quite the edge. Little did I realize, not having fully reviewed Venethrax, that I was also facing a caster who was really well designed to take on Horde armies. That Dragonslayer spell, combined with Dismember was going to make me unhappy.
The setup was pretty clean, there were some forests and terrain but our armies were small enough that it was going to be a pretty straight run at each other. I was going first, and had Mulg(Left) and the Mauler(Right) flanking Janissa in the center. The Champions were to the left of Mulg lined up in a double line. Shoulder to Shoulder with the Mauler was the Champion Healer and Borka and his Pyg were behind the center a little towards the Left.
|Approximate Layout of Clan Kilbride at the Start|
My opponent had most of his army lined up similarly. With the advance deployment/move the Bloodgorgers and Seethers were out in front. The Pistol Wraiths were going for my flank on the left(my left) and the Defiler was trying the same on the right.
First turn was pretty obvious. We all move up a bunch. I moved up 8", keeping everybody in line with Mulg, and Janissa gave the champions a wall in case I encountered some surprise I wasn't expecting. Borka tossed Iron Flesh on the Champions, something I was going to thank my stars I did. My inexperience showed here though since I originally expected a spell called 'Iron Flesh' to add to armor. But Defense seemed an okay choice. And I had done it, I couldn't undo it. I would never regret this mistake though.
My opponents turn went similarly. He tossed some soul sucking spell on the blood gorgers, and they stayed a little back from the Seether's who had the lead in the army. He didn't move his full distance and so I was staring at the distance between us trying to figure out if I had the charge or not.
Finally I said, "Go big or Go home." an adage my gaming group and I have maintained for many a year.
I maintained Iron Flesh but other than that didn't have a lot of clear ideas. Janissa started me off trying to gain me a range, moving up her distance through the space between the mauler and mulg(since she was a bit back) and just barely missed 8" on the lead Seether with her spell. Sadly it scattered backwards, doing nothing. Okay, maybe I've got this. Borka went next, popped his feat, lined up behind Janissa and tossed a bomb, definitely short but scatter could.. never mind.. back towards me.. hits nothing. So the dice arn't quite in my favor right now. but we can do this. And toss the Mauler Animus on Mulg. I probably should have discarded some Fury here to have room later. Oh well.
Time to Go Big.. Mulg charges, and yes indeed he's got range all the way to melee.
Mulg proceeded to beat down the seether and I got to 3 Fury and the Seether was at something like 1 point left. I thought about it a bit and decided, why not. Toss out runebreaker instead. So I didn't know if it would be useful, but wanted to make sure his caster didn't get into range and toss some spells on me somehow.
Leaving the Seether alive also meant that my Mauler could get into range, one hit and the Seether is down. And the Mauler's looking around for targets without any in sight. His animus is on as well so he's got a bit of fury.
Unfortunately the distances didn't quite work out so well for my champions. The Iron Flesh seems like a really bad idea now as they miss melee range by the smallest of fractions. But they miss it. Instead I get them set up shoulder to shoulder and, in a bit of insight on my part, I leave Skaldi behind them and close to the center. This will turn out to be useful later, as will his ability to move through his brethren thanks to the hero.
The hero runs on up but hasn't got any targets. And I'm done. One Seether is down, and I'm up in his face.
The remaining Seether starts it off, he's not engaged so he charges Mulg, grab and smashing him throwing Mulg back torward Janissa, only doing moderate damage to her and none to Mulg(dice still hate me..). This is going to prove problematic next turn. I don't have room for Mulg's 5 fury and he's on the ground at Janissa's feet. Her not being knocked down is critical here though.
But this has also left me a critical opening. He's within 6" of Skaldi and there's space now. Into which Skaldi charges with his axe. He pops the jack for some moderate damage and I can only wish he could get the second attack out of sequence. I'll still settle for this though as he's in the fight and further more still shoulder to shoulder with his brother's.
But this is quickly ignored in favor of the champion's plight, they are charged by the Bloodgorger's but here is where my defense comes into play, Defense 15 is really pretty good and the Bloodgorger's attacks mostly miss. One luck guy hits with a charge attack downing one of the champions leaving a hole in the line. The General charges Skaldi and manages to put 6 damage on the Trollkin Champion but doesn't drop him. The pistol wraiths come around the corner and with one of my champion's unengaged they open up on him... only to find that Iron Flesh meets Pistol, Iron Flesh wins. Only 1 attack hits and against their armor 18 he only does 2 damage.
His Defiler also moves in, getting my champion hero for 5 damage and corroding away at him.
And here's where it gets a little unnerving. Up runs Venethrax and my Mauler is starting to look a little... concerned. Attack after attack rips into the mauler and when it is all done he's standing there at 1 life and Venethrax is looking.. perturbed.
And it's back over to me. So first off I've got an issue. I don't have enough fury capacity to suck up all of what's there and I'll be honest I'm not sure I fully understand the fury rules yet. But I pull what I can off of Mulg and then roll for both him and the mauler. Sadly.. the dice are really against me. I roll 9 on Mulg's dice, which plus the 2 fury puts him at 11, he's going off of me, and the maul similarly rolls 9 also spacing out.
The mauler goes ape on Venethrax, proving that rage does not equal hitting and doing not a single point of damage or even hitting. Mulg on the other hand turns on Janissa and beats her down with his 'stick'. Bam bam.. Hard to miss her, and he doesn't. And he crushes her into the ground. He lifts his club, having sated his anger and there is Janissa, holding it up. Tough enough to take it and be annoyed. That's going to be lucky.
Now I start trying to figure out my moves. Janissa moves on over and gets to just within range of the Pistol Wraiths who are just close enough for her AOE 3 to hit both. Which she does, killing the first one and then rolling snake eyes for damage on the second, doing nothing. My hero corrodes a little but charges into Venethrax, hitting for some significant damage(something on the order of 6-10 I forget the exact number).
My champions explain, with axes, why serving Cryx is a bad career move for the Trollkin, and when they are done the only one left standing is one lone survivor standing outside melee range. One of the Champions takes Gerlak down as well and tough rolls are not in the works for my foe. This leaves Skaldi to put some more damage on the Seether, though it's relatively minimal, 2 hits for 4 damage, but it's enough to make one fist useless. Borka and his Pyg move around Mulg and toss a bomb at the jack, missing but barely scattering. the resulting damage though requires box cars to damage anything and fails to do anything(to my mauler, who I was actually sort of wanting to kill, nor to skaldi) and I was done. With full fury on Borka, the Mauler about to die and Mulg clean of fury.
My opponent wasted no time killing the mauler with Venethrax, his defiler moved in and sprayed Borka and the Pyg, missing Borka but he killed the Pyg, PARTY FOUL!.
The movement of Borka, along with the death of the mauler has also opened up another lane and taking the free strike from Skaldi(4 more damage, pattern here?) his final seether, with full focus, charges Borka.
Mistake from both my opponent and I. Apparently neither of us knows the rules great. I through Free strikes had some bonus, he didn't. Neither of us had rules in front of us and I couldn't find it in the app(apparently it's called a free strike so it would be under F doctor.. duh..) so we went with no bonuses. The boosted damage might have made some difference here, but as we'll see in a bit, since we played it the same both times it occurred I won't argue with the outcome.
Ouch. Here's where I start tossing damage over to Mulg, and amazingly despite having Mulg suck up 16 damage and keeping 10 to myself, Mulg has not a single spiral boxed. He's at full effectiveness.. and like 4 life. Borka also avoided being hit with the second attack so no chain and smash against him, but he's still going to have to finish this.
Here's another mistake I made. I forgot that Mulg has protective fit for his warcaster and so I forgot to make my advance/attack with Mulg. I knew I liked Mulg.
His Necrosurgeon also moved up, healed Venethrax to full, and wraith opened up on Janissa, hitting her, dropping her, Tough again!, then repeating with the second shot finally putting Janissa down for the count. His final Bloodgorger charged Skaldi, hitting once with but not breaking through his armor. There may have been a spell cast in there somewhere as I think as Borka got hit with a Bloodrain which is how he ended up with Corrosion and some extra damage.
He finishes up at this point and I look things over. Mulg's injured but he's still completely effective and my champions are strangely undamaged for the most part, my champion hero is on venethrax, and Borka's got a Seether up in his face. And I've got a party foul to run.
And here again my inexperience shows. I read it as model, not unit. And this would only have picked me up additional attacks. I gave the foul to Skaldi(which meant the Champion unit) and only advanced Skaldi, not the entire unit. I've kept up Iron Flesh and so the attack free strike from the Bloodgorger missed. Skaldi managed to get into melee with the Seether, hitting it again for 4 damage. Borka opens up next and puts the Seether down, burning through all but 1 of his remaining focus to do it. I forgot I could burn some life during maintenance to pick up additional focus and since I knew the fight was over one way or another this turn I should have picked up the extra focus so I could at least cast mosh pit(would have had it). Oh well.
Mulg goes next, charges Venethrax and beats him pretty severally with his first two attacks, leaving the Lich Lord at 1 life. 4 fury left! But it takes an 8 to hit him, so I buy the extra attack and boost the attack.. and roll.. a 7 on 3 dice.. no problem, 2 left, do the same thing.. 7.. again.. Seriously? Well this is why I have the rest of the army. Skaldi, now unengaged and able to take his turn, along with his unit, charges into Venethrax. Skaldi takes the first shot, hits and the Lich Lord is down. Borka limps off the field and the Fell Singers have another tail to tell of his power, though he dedicates this win to his Pyg Keg Carrier, "All hail the Pyg Kilbride!"
Overall I'm really happy with this army. The combination of Iron Flesh with the champions high armor made them a tough nut for my foe to crack. And with the hero around so they can charge through each other, they can have lanes when nobody else does. Defense 15/Armor 18 is pretty crazy. Mulg's deep fury, along with the Mauler also gives you the power you need to hammer into those tough models. And Janissa is that little extra something that can give you the wrench when all you've got is hammers. I'm definitely keeping this list. And despite the lack of theme, it will stay on my rotation for some time to come.