Learning the inns and outs of eHaley as an opponent is tedious work, but it has to be done so I challenged another eHaley player last night and brought my revised Terminus list.
Major Victoria Haley
Arcane Tempest Gun Mages (Leader and 5 Grunts)
– Arcane Tempest Gun Mage Officer
Black 13th Gun Mage Strike Team
Cylena Raefyll & Nyss Hunters (Cylena and 9 Grunts)
– Captain Jonas Murdoch
Stormblade Infantry (Leader and 5 Grunts)
– Stormblade Infantry Officer & Standard
– 3 Stormblade Infantry Storm Gunner
I wondered a bit about the missing Eiryss and Rhupert/Archduke but it he was interested in seeing how he did without them in order to squeeze in more offense.
Lich Lord Terminus
Bane Thralls (Leader and 9 Grunts)
– Bane Thrall Officer & Standard
Bile Thralls (Leader and 5 Grunts)
The Withershadow Combine
Bane Lord Tartarus
I won the roll and decided to go first. I was pretty sure I knew which side he would pick and it was fine with me as the woods he would camp with his Nyss Hunters only mattered if I was aiming to win on scenario.
I ran up the Machine Wraith to attract his Time Bombs since something was going to get hit and a defense 16 Machine Wraith had a chance of surviving. Then I forgot that it’s an AoE 4 and put Tartarus up there with him.
Captain Croc and his handler took the left flank where I knew the Nyss Hunters would show up, since they’re perfectly suited to handle the Nyss Hunter issue. Submerge allows them immunity to the Assault order shot and Snapjaw out-threats them. I placed the second Machine Wraith up front with Snapjaw with the intention of getting Mad Murdoch out of the game if I could.
The main list pressed up the center but I knew it would be a long and hard game since I had no way of forcing him to feat and no way to force him to come within range of my assault. Saxon Orrik decided to go make sure the Gun Mages had something to shoot at and it was his turn.
The Nyss Hunters take the woods as I knew they would. Thorn moves up and does his hit and run with eHaley leaving Tartarus Time Bombed (due to my brain fart) and the Machine Wraith dead.
B13 throws out a Mage Storm that lucks out and scatters 5″ in the right direction killing two Bane Thralls but the Gun Mages move up and fail to bring down Saxon Orrik which leaves me some options.
So I’m stuck in an impossible situation and I know it… what to do. I noticed that Jonas Murdoch was having trouble keeping all the Nyss Hunters in his CMD range so I ran the Machine Wraith down to threaten free strikes and keep him from moving. If it worked I could keep the entire unit of Nyss Hunters from moving (since they would be assaulting out of coherency) or get to swing at Jonas Murdoch and a couple of Nyss Hunters.
I put Captain Croc up on the hill to lure in a couple of Nyss Hunters so he had something to do when feat round came, and Darragh Wrathe rode up on the top and popped Beyond Death to make his shooting a little less problematic. Then Erebus took one for the team and ran up front to force his Stormclad to deal with it.
The Bane Thralls just scattered to make him work for it at least, and Terminus stayed back out of Stormclad range (my opponent could probably have taken down Erebus with the Stormblades and brought Terminus down since I had to throw Erebus a Focus to make him run and was only at armor 23). Saxon Orrik ran to engage the Gun Mages but I couldn’t make it to melee with more than one of them and I was royally screwed.
The Nyss Hunters and Murdoch all make it away from the Machine Wraith, and the roll on the image above is the first damage roll on Snapjaw. Hilarity then ensued when I remembered that Tartarus has Terror (it says so on the back of his base) and Snapjaw didn’t die horribly. Neither did the Machine Wraith and the left flank suddenly looked winnable.
Darragh Wrathe was gunned down, Madelyn died to a Time Bomb, most of the Bane Thralls died, half the Bile Thralls died, Erebus died, Maelovus died and my entire army basically evaporated into thin air (making three out of twenty tough checks didn’t help me much) and when that feat popped I had my doubts.
Tartarus makes another Bane Thrall (back to three now, and that was the first model I killed in his army) and they move to engage the Stormclad. Snapjaw eats the two Nyss Hunters he can reach. The WSC kills a Stormblade. Then Terminus gets to activate and charges a member of the B13 that got to close, he feats and steals a soul, then B13 fails their abomination check (awesome).
The Skarlock manages another Stormblade with a Hellfire, and Saxon Orrik charges and manages not to die from two free strikes and kills a Gun Mage but fails to break armor on a B13 member (PS 8 and snake eyes). That was my round with a grand total of six kills, but Terminus is at armor 27 and the Stormclad can’t break that.
The Stormblade assaulting Saxon Orrik is my new hero. He assaults, misses Saxon, directly hits the B13 that Saxon is fighting, out comes the AoE 3 and Terminus eats another three souls. Then he flunks his melee attack against Saxon leaving me a happy man.
I forgot to take a picture this round because I was way busy thinking. At that point I was just fighting because I never surrender but my opponent made a huge mistake activating the Stormblades first and they got in the way of the Stormclad so it couldn’t get to Snapjaw.
B13 failed to regroup and while the Nyss Hunters regrouped they were doing nothing that round. The Gun Mages wiped the last Bile Thralls (very good thinking there), and Terminus was Time Bombed to keep him out of the fight. The thing is that with Snapjaw alive I had a shot and completely turning the table(s), and Terminus was sitting on 12 Focus.
Snapjaw completely annihilates the Stormclad (he’s staying in the list) with a little assistance from Tartarus, and the WSC & Skarlock grind the Gun Mages further down. Saxon Orrik manages to kill another Gun Mage but again fails to break armor on his second attack (snake eyes again).
In a fit of enthusiasm I throw an Annihilation that missed and kills my own Machine Wraith, but Terminus does manage to grab a soul, he’s standing in the wreck of Erebus, he’s still armor 26, and there’s no Stormclad (good times).
My opponent looks at the table and it’s not looking good. He can kite Terminus for a while but he needs a couple of things to work this round to stand a real chance. The first is crowd control on Terminus but defense 18 in the wreck means his Telekinesis misses, but as long as he can take out Snapjaw it’s still doable. Nyss Hunters charge, one gets in melee with Tartarus, Terror check comes up 11 and my opponent surrenders.
Holy crap that was intense, despite going a million rounds, and had he not bungled the Stormclad/Stormblade activation I think I would have lost. The game was basically one continuous exercise in failing tough checks and removing models without ever getting to hurt him back, but the list did what it does best and just kept on grinding.
I probably wouldn’t have won without the failed morale checks either but that’s why I write it on the back of the bases because occasionally remembering that you cause Terror can win you games. I think he’ll be bringing Rhupert/Archduke again next time but that’s three points that won’t be going into offense so that’s fine with me.
Erebus actually helped me a lot since his wreck was vital to dodging Haleys spells, and if he had not been TK’ed and turned around the Stormclad would have failed it’s run on him. I quite like the list as it is now but I really find myself lacking something that can shoot.