The Cygnar advance continues as Kraye lines up one of the most interesting lists I’ve ever had the pleasure of facing. I did wonder about some of his choices but as he said “the list is meant to be entertaining, not necessarily powerful“.
Captain Jeremiah Kraye
Black 13th Gun Mage Strike Team
Captain Arlan Strangewayes
Eight Warjacks and a grand total of four relevant souls seemed a bit daunting. I had a fairly clear end game though, because taking out the Ironclad would mean an almost guaranteed win.
Lich Lord Terminus– ErebusBane Thralls (Leader and 9 Grunts)– Bane Thrall Officer & StandardBile Thralls (Leader and 5 Grunts)The Withershadow CombineBane Lord TartarusDarragh WratheMachine WraithMachine WraithMadelyn CorbeauSaxon Orrik
The same list as last time because I felt it performed really well despite everything, but the lack of ranged attacks would be an issue in this game. Kraye makes light warjacks perform as light cavalry and heavy warjacks as heavy cavalry, which means they’re absurdly hard to catch.
Kraye also has the ability to send the Ironclad charging from 15.5″ away which meant I couldn’t afford to power Erebus and weaken Terminus, so another game where he would put on his “hit me” sign and run full speed at the enemy.
I won the roll and decided to go second (and for some reason Kris is giving Terminus bunny ears… Jetlag is a SoB but he did bring me back casino dice so he’s forgiven). This was really a decision based on terrain as the other side of the table was cluttered and I didn’t feel like delaying my advance against the most mobile list in the game. Bile Thralls had a new job assignment since they had almost nothing to do and would never catch anything: BULLET SHIELD!
His lights were AD and his Ironclad can run frigging 20″ in the first round so there would be nothing I could do except advance and hope for the best.
Erebus is assigned a Focus and moves up to the front and prepares to receive. Bile Thralls run out in front and makes a circle around him because SOMEONE forgot about Mage Storm again. Saxon Orrik goes out in front of the pile of “you’re not doing anything anyway” models I would force him to shoot, which would have been a great plan if B13 hadn’t been standing there.
The Machine Wraith on the right flank takes the hill and though it didn’t go as planned last game it’s a tactic worth repeating. WE & SJ lines up to violate the Ironclad if it comes for Erebus and I prepare for the storm.
Having talked so much about the incoming Mage Storm my opponent forgets that it’s a cloud effect and though it wipes a pile of models it also makes Erebus defense 16 and the Hunters fail to kill him (epic). The Machine Wraith gamble pays of when B13 misses him and there’s a Minuteman within range. The Bane Thralls make a boatload of tough checks and I lose very few.
If it hadn’t been for that Cyclone I would have ripped him apart but Cyclones are like kryptonite to the list and with the Mage Storm I was going nowhere fast.
I decide to shift my main force right and spread out so at least something could get to him when my next turn came around. I shuffled around and made Madelyn run away screaming (the one model in my list that takes Abomination checks and I put her right next to terminus).
The Bile Thralls actually manage to inflict some damage to a Minuteman (blowing out the Cortex) and the other Minuteman is grabbed by the machine Wraith which took a load of my shoulders (no jumping flak fielding maniacs next turn). I run the second Machine Wraith up and forget about Mage Storm again (is there somewhere I can write that down so I’ll remember the damn thing).
Tartarus takes heavy damage running through the Mage Storm already in play because I messed up activations with WE & SJ who were supposed to move up and block the lanes, and a few Bane Thralls fail charge or run around the covering fire templates. Erebus fails his charge against the B13 by 0.2″ but manages to engage the Cyclone, but that turned out to be a big fat waste of time since the bastard can still lay down covering fire when engaged.
This round hurt more and a lot of Bane Thralls died, but Admonia makes it through on tough, and so does the remaining Bile Thrall. Darragh Wrathe is unhorsed but alive and spreading out is turning out to be the right choice. He also fails to get the Machine Wraith out of the Minuteman so for the first time ever I have an actual enemy jack to play with! (the Gun Bunny I managed to grab a year ago was worthless). Tartarus dies.
Since I forgot the Mage Storm again my second Machine Wraith dies when Erebus is targeted by the thing and it clips the MW. Erebus survives the Ironclad, shooting, sprays and whatever else was thrown at him but is left with three boxes left and only movement active. Still it was interesting to see how much punishment he could take this time since he usually just turns into a wreck when someone looks at him hard.
I do some thinking and reluctantly choose to evacuate the Minuteman. Erebus finally succumbs to the Mage Storm when he tries to waddle over to Arlan and kill him. Terminus is in charge range of B13 so he charges in and feats, collects the three souls and at ARM 27 I bet on the Ironclad failing to hurt him.
The Machine Wraith that evacuated walks over and grabs the god damn annoying Cyclone instead, because if I manage to hold on to that my troubles are over. The Bane Thralls wreck the now hostile Minuteman. The WSC nukes Arlan but I fail to do much damage to anything else. I’ve pushed Kraye well back and he can’t keep running so he has to do something this round or he’s in trouble.
The Sentinel brings down Admonia and I was wondering why that was so important until someone mentioned the words “Pursuit” and “Terminus” in the same sentence: Uh oh!
The Ironclad tremors and knocks down Terminus so now it’s a wee bit unlikely that I’ll avoid being pursued, and Kraye charges his own Cyclone but ends up having to boot the MW with a Focus when I keep making my CMD checks. Interestingly I was close to losing WE & SJ when Madelyn was to close to Wrong Eye and he circumvented the Submerge by shooting at her and suckering the shots to Wrong Eye, but a timely snake eyes prevented their deaths.
Pursuit goes up on Terminus and the Cyclone is free to move away. The Machine Wraith emerges behind Kraye and the above picture is how the Cyclone SHOULD have been placed… the next picture is how it was actually placed since he got caught up in the optimal placement of covering fire.
Pursuit isn’t worth much when you can’t actually move anywhere and we shook hands when he discovered how he’d placed the Cyclone and lost the game. Another game won due to Machine Wraiths ability to be exceptionally annoying and disruptive.
I LOVE that Kraye list. It’s like trying to catch liquid metal with your bare hands: It’s futile and it hurts like a @#£$€¤@€. It’s not really all that powerful against a camper caster but a while back I lost eGaspy to a line of lights moving up to fire and then moving away after he had made an opening by slamming from 15″ away with a Firefly (another version of the list).
The game itself took more than three hours and we were both exceptionally confused about the correct way to fight the opposing lists. If he hadn’t messed up placement and allowed me to negate Pursuit he could have wiped me as long as he could bring down WE & SJ and keep away from my slower units.