Podcast 027 – Menoth vs Trolls, pKreoss vs Borka: Weaponmaster Mosh Pit…

For the first time ever on Combo Smite, we managed to get a game against Trolls! Woo!

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Todd, a recent addition to our local weekly game nights and a Press Ganger for the London Area (“Gingerstein” on the PP Forums), is a Retribution and Circle player by choice, but he’s dabbled in several other factions… and for this week, he decided to try out Trolls for the first time! Sweet! I jumped on the opportunity to play against trolls… I was trying out two new warcasters in Menoth, and out of all the Factions, I have the *least* practice against Trollbloods, and I suspect that they’re one of the hardest match ups for Protectorate, and the only way to get better against a Faction? Practice!


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Preamble

With the Youngblood tournament finished, it’s time to go back to the glory that is 50 points… I love 35 point games (and 15 and 25, for the record), but 50 points are really my favourite. My plan was to start trying out some of the other Protectorate warcasters (I’ve used the Harbinger and eFeora often enough that I’m pretty confident with them… I’ve used pReznik once and pFeora once, but that’s it!). And of the warcasters I own… pKreoss seems super-cool (Defender’s Ward alone is worth the price of admission), and pFeora is really neat. So I made a list for each.

Todd was rockin’ a Borka Kegslayer list, and a Determined Cow list (that’s “Grim Angus”, for the unaware). However, the Kegslayer list had both the Stone with the Stonescribe Elder (ie: No Fire), and a Pyre troll (REALLY no Fire), while the Grim Angus list had a Bomber (immunity to blast damage). So… pFeora was very much out. Todd really wanted to play the Borka “Family Reunion” tier, and so with our lists picked, we rolled for initiative… which Todd won and chose the table side without as much rough terrain (smart). I was happy to go first, though!

My pKreoss list was as follows:

High Exemplar Kreoss (pKreoss, Kreoss1)
– Hierophant
– Reckoner
– Redeemer
Exemplar Errants (max)
– Officer and Standard
Exemplar Bastions (max)
Exemplar Bastion Seneschal (“Senny”)
– Vanquisher
Choir of Menoth (min)
Vassal of Menoth
Vassal of Menoth
Wracks
High Paladin Vilmon

Overall… not a bad list. Not a fantastic list, but not a bad list. I love Vilmon, but he kinda wants another Paladin or two to hang out with him… and the Vanquisher on the Bastion Senny worked *okay*, but I think maybe 2 Revengers, or a Revenger and a Dervish… anyway, for a first try, I’m pretty happy with it.

As for Todd’s List:

Borka Kegslayer
– Pyg Keg Carrier (“Kenny”)
– Earthborn Dire Troll
– Pyre Troll
Trollkin Champions (min)
– Skaldi Bonehammer
Trollkin Champions (min)
Trollkin Champions (min)
Trollkin Champion Hero
Trollkin Champion Hero
Krielstone Bearer and Stone Scribes (“The Bank”, “The Stone”)
– Stone Scribe Elder
Trollkin Chronicler
Greygore Boomhowler and Co (max, some proxied by other Trollkin models, but all unpainted… if it’s an unpainted troll in this batrep, it’s a Boomhowler!)

The tier benefits include being able to take Greygore (Todd is a huge fan, as am I… the Boomhowlers are an incredible unit, and one of the best infantry options in the game), “Tale of Mists” first turn (basically useless since he didn’t go first, but whatev’), and 1 unit with “Advanced Move” for every Champion Hero he fielded.

The scenario we rolled was “Into the Breach”, which has a zone, 2 objectives, and a flag. You get 1 CP for either controlling the zone, dominating the flag, or destroying the enemy objective, and 2CPs for dominating the zone… the objectives also grant “Inspiration” (solos grant Fearless within their CMD range), which is neat, but both of our armies are full of fearless troops and so not a huge deal.

I set up my army with Kreoss and his warjacks on the left side with the Choir and Vassals nearby and Vilmon on the far left (his job was to hold down the flag for the entire game so I could focus on clearing the zone with everything else), the Bastions towards the middle (and as far from the forest as I could jam them) and the Senny and Vanquisher near Kreoss. My Errants and Wracks got Advanced Deployed near the middle, with the wracks spread out for ease of Focus-pulling (and hopefully no exploding-killing-my-own-guys!).

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(Sorry Kreoss is unpainted… working on him at the same time as my Judicator!)

Todd’s deployment was with Borka, the Earthborn, and Kenny near the middle, flanked on either side by Champion Heroes. The Pyre troll went to the left side near the Chronicler, while the Boomhowlers went near the middle. One unit of Champions went to the far left (with Skaldi), while the other two went to the far right.

Skaldi’s unit of Champions and Greygore both got Advanced Moves and headed up the field a bit.

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With that, we were ready to start! Go team Meno… I mean, may the best player win… yes… that’s it…

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Menoth Turn 1
I’m just happy I get to go first! Not much to say at this point… my plan was to have Vilmon contest the flag and the Errants and Bastions clear out the zone to let Kreoss (protected by his warjacks) dominate it while lobbing long range firepower onto the Trolls. So, towards this end, Kreoss allocates 1 Focus to both the Reckoner and Redeemer.

The Errants run forward and spread out, heading towards the middle of the table.
Kreoss goes next, walking forward and *just barely* getting the Errant Standard within range to cast “Defender’s Ward” on them. He then casts Lamentation on himself, and I realize that I forgot to activate the the Hierophant first because I’m an idiot.

The Bastions, Senny, and Vanquisher all run up (the Seneschal and Vanquisher in B2B to give him the +2 ARM bonus). Both of my other warjacks spend their Focus to run forward, with the Redeemer going onto the hill to give it effective “arcing fire” from elevation.
Lastly, the Choir, Vilmon, and the Vassals all run forward.
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Trolls Turn 1
Keep in mind that this is the first time Todd has ever played trolls… and getting used to that many Medium bases is going to take time. Still, he’s way more experienced than I am, so not too much sympathy for the guy, okay?

With that aside, the Boomhowlers go first, get “Super Tough” (Call of Defiance, for the officially-minded of you) and then run forward.
Borka gets Topped Off by Kenny, moves up, and casts “Iron Flesh” on the Boomhowlers. He then dumps the rest of his Fury into the Bank (4 Fury)

Both of his warbeasts rile and run forward.
The Stone pops ARM-bonus and No Fire and then run forward.
Likewise, all the Champions run up, getting in B2B with each other. The Heroes run up on either side of the Objective.
The Chronicler moves up and gives “Hero’s Tragedy”to Skaldi’s unit of Champions. With that, Todd’s turn is done.
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Menoth Turn 2
I’m looking at the “Iron Flesh”-protected Boomhowlers, and running some mental numbers. DEF15 against MAT7 means 8s to hit with my Errants… that’s not so good. I decide that I’m going to have to Purify it away… which is a massive use of Kreoss’s resources, since I’ll have to recast all his Upkeep spells… but oh well. Kreoss drops everything and camps his full stack of Focus (he’s going to need it!).
I remember to use the Hierophant first, moving him up and giving Kreoss “Harmonious Exaltation”.
Kreoss goes next. He walks up as far as he can (SPD5 on a warcaster is *sad*), checks his CTRL to make sure that he’s got at least 1 Boomhowler in range (he does), and then casts Purify, removing Iron Flesh. He then casts Defender’s Ward on the Errants again, and Lamentation on himself again. Just for safety, I pull a Focus from a Wrack, which I will declare will explode on a 1, 2, or 3… and it doesn’t explode! Nice.
The Errants activate and Charge. I manage to get 2 on Champions and then 4 on Boomhowlers. I manage to outright kill 1 Boomhowler but 3 successfully Tough… and the 2 Champions both take some damage, but neither take an enormous amount. I get 1 Quickwork shot from the 1 (ONE) Troll I killed, which goes flying towards Boomhowler himself… but I flub the hit roll, and so miss. Boo.

The Choir goes next, shuffling up and singing “Battle” onto all my warjacks.
The Bastions go next, running forward up behind the Errants and spreading out a bit. The Seneschal also runs up, and the Vanquisher runs up into B2B with him again.

Kreoss is kinda flappin’ in the breeze… theoretically nothing is close to him, but I figure it’s better safe, and I move the Reckoner up to be between him and the approaching hordes of inhuman monstrosities. The Reckoner fires a shot at Skaldi, and actually manages to ping him (“Defence: Troll” and Todd affectionately referred to it, is not very high). I tank the damage roll, though, but do light him on fire with a Critical Hit! So, that’s not bad.
The Redeemer stands, aims, and fires at Skaldi… DEF10 due to Flare from the Reckoner means that my Redeemer actually hits! And I don’t flub this roll, and Skaldi fails his Tough-check… So long, Skaldi!
My first Vassal gives an Ancillary Attack to the Reckoner, which goes at the Champion Skaldi was previously B2B with, but sadly he’s *just barely* under Cover, and so my shot flies wide.
The other Vassal gives the Vanquisher an Ancillary Attack, which flies towards Boomhowler himself… but sadly scatters away onto one of the other Boomhowlers. I do manage to kill it, though, and he fails his Tough… so there’s that, I suppose?
Lastly, Vilmon moves up to be B2B with the flag and drops into “Impervious Wall” (Immunity to non-magical weapons).
Anyway, with that, my turn is done… and I’m pretty confident with how things are going so far.
Which is normally an indication that things are about to go horribly, horribly awry…
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Trolls Turn 2
I managed to get 1 Boomhowler lit on Fire, just outside of the Protective Aura of the Krielstone… the fire doesn’t go out, but then he refuses to die (I flub the damage roll, damnit!).
Borka reeves back up to full Fury, and has nothing to upkeep due to the Purify. So no worries there.
The Champions on the left (bereft of Skaldi) activate first and Charge: 1 goes for an Errant on the left side, while the other 2 are already engaged by the Errants that Charged them. The charging model hits the Errant twice, both of which I self-sac off to the other nearby Errants… and since those Champions can’t reach that other Errant… success! Only 2 deaths from 3 charging Champions is happy-times for Menoth.
Todd then activates the Chronicler and gives “Hero’s Tragedy” to the Boomhowlers.
Greygore gives Super Tough again, and the unit charges.

I’m going to interject here for a moment: Todd technically is cheating here, since 3 or 4 of his Boomhowlers were Knocked Down and, on Charge Orders, aren’t allowed to do more than a full advance. Instead, Todd had those Knocked Down models just stand up and make regular attacks: this isn’t correct, but at the time I was only 85% sure I was right and so let him do it. But for all the readers, keep that in mind… knocked down models are unable to attack on turns when the rest of the unit charges!

Okay, back to the battle!

Regardless, the Boomhowlers have some difficulty hitting my guys (Defender’s Ward FTW), and they kill a few which I use Self-Sac to deny attacks to other Boomhowlers.

The Pyre Troll goes next. It walks up behind some Champions and takes a shot at my Standard Bearer… the shot misses, but scatters to hit both my Officer and Standard Bearer. He boosts damage on the Officer but only inflicts 2 damage, and fails to wound the Standard. However, both of them are on Fire… which I’m pretty sure can’t be legal since I’m playing Menoth, but I don’t seem to be able to find the appropriate rules entry where it says “No Burninating Menoth Models”.

Borka gets Topped Off by Kenny again. He then activates, walks forward, casts “Windwall” (stupid not-an-upkeep spells!), and tosses 3 Fury into the Stones.
The Krielstone walks up a bit and uses the Aura for ARM and No Fire, which extinguishes the one burning Boomhowler (but not MY burning models, because apparently the Stone is picky about who to deny burning to!
The Earthborn walks up behind his infantry and riles for a few Fury.
Lastly, the closer unit of Champions on the far right charge my Errants closest to them, but due to the forest can’t get the distance. The other Champions run up and pack into Defensive Line formations. Todd is now done his turn…
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Menoth Turn 3
We start doing something that no Menite warcaster ever has to do… Fire checks on his own models. The Officer burns, dies, and Self-Sacs off the death… and then the Standard *also* burns, dies… but I choose to let him die, since I don’t really need to worry too much about being targeted by spells this game. Still, this leaves me with a total of 3 Errants on the table… ouch.
Kreoss upkeeps drops Defender’s Ward and upkeeps Lamentation, since there’s no need to Purify anything off the table (only 1 of my models is on fire, and I suspect he won’t survive long enough to need to worry about it!). He then allocates 2 Focus to the Reckoner and 3 to the Redeemer.
My remaining Errants activate and take swings at the Boomhowlers and Champions nearby. I get 1 on Greygore (who has moved up to the front lines), who hits, but Greygore Toughs… I kill one other Boomhowler (and get the Errant Knocked Down as a result), and a swing at a Champion and missing (boo!).
The Bastions go next and charge in. I charge 2 on the Pyre Troll, but only 1 manages to get the distance needed, 2 charge Greygore, and 1 Charges a Champion. The Pyre Troll is hit but I flub the damage roll (noticing a trend, folks?) and only inflict 5 points. Both hit Greygore, killing him twice… aaaaannnnd… he Toughs twice (BOO!). And the one swinging at the Champion hits, kills, but the Troll Toughs!

Why have you abandoned me, oh Menoth?!

I really want Greygore dead, since *regular* Tough is hard enough to deal with… so I send my Seneschal in. He hits and finally puts Greygore down for good, but correspondingly gets Knocked Down as a result. Gah! Forgot about that…
The Choir sings Battle, since it’s about to be “Go Time” for my warjacks.

For a few moments, I consider about whether I should run the Vanquisher up to be B2B with my Knocked Down Seneschal to give him the +2ARM bonus or not… in the end, I decide not to because, and you’ll have to excuse my stupidity here, I was going to swap Defender’s Ward onto the Bastions and so therefore the Seneschal will get that.

Yeah. Derp-ahdee-doodah… Derp-ahdee-day… anyhoo.

As a result, the Vanquisher just walks up and takes a shot at the Earthborn which auto-misses due to Windwall: the shot scatters onto 2 Boomhowlers and 2 Errants. I manage to kill one of the Boomhowlers (who doesn’t Tough), but not the other one… but I DO manage to kill both my Errants… sooo… yay? Anyway, I give the Vanquisher an Ancillary Attack, and it scatters *to exactly the same spot!). Curses! And I fail to kill that Boomhowler again! Gah!

The Hierophant Harmoniously Exalts.
Kreoss activates next and pulls a Focus off a Wrack (no earth-shattering kaboom), and then puts Defender’s Ward on Bastions. There are only 2 Errants left at this point, and I need my Bastions to last as long as humanly possible…

The Reckoner then activates, aims and shoots the Chronicler. I’ve had about enough of the “Knocking my Guys Down For Doing Their Job” shenanigans of “Hero’s Tragedy”, thank you very much! He hits and kills but the Chronicler Toughs! I give the Reckoner an Ancillary attack: Hits again, kills for good this time (tell a story about THAT, ya limey bastard!).

Vilmon walks forward in Impervious Wall towards the Champions on the left… if they want to charge my Reckoner, they’re going to need to survive a POW15 Weaponmaster free strike on their way.

The Redeemer activates, walks forward and sights a Stone Scribe through a gap in the front lines. The first shot scatters away harmlessly. The second shot scatters onto the Krielstone Bearer and 2 of his scribe-lackeys: I boost damage on the Bearer and kill him (and he doesn’t Tough), spend my last Focus to boost damage on 1 of the lackeys and kill him, and the last roll doesn’t kill the last one: The Krielstone Bearer self-sacs his death off to a different dude, keeping up the aura and, more importantly, keeping the Krielstone in the game!
With that, my turn is over!
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Trolls Turn 3
Todd’s army is still standing strong… I’ve whittled it down a bit, but the majority of the hitting power is still there in the Heroes and Champions. Borka pulls in his fill of Fury, and we’re off.
THe Prye Troll walks up and does a 2-handed throw to lob one of my Errants into another Errant. The throw itself kills one, but the collateral damage fails to kill the other.
The left unit of Champions activate and wipe out that surviving Errant (who, technically, is no longer surviving). This leaves me with 2 Errants left.
The left-most Hero activates and charges a Bastion. He manages to hit and inflict 5 damage, which I spread out uniformly over the unit.

(Brief aside: I think Todd forgot that the Hero has “Thresher”… but alternatively, maybe there was always friendly models within Thresher range and so he didn’t want to risk it? Either way I don’t think he Threshered with either of them at any point all game)

The Boomhowlers activate and walk, killing 1 of the Errants and smacking a few of the Bastions with CMAs.
The Right-most Champions charge some Bastions and the Seneschal, hitting the Senny for 4 damage (woo! Not dead!) and 5 more damage on the Bastions (for a total of 15 points spread over the unit at this point).
The last unit of Champions abuse the “Tactician” ability of the nearby Hero to get another successful charge on the Seneschal, and this time put him down for good. The other 2 Champions just run up into B2B with that guy.
The other Hero charges a Bastion and misses (woo!).
Borka gets Topped Off again (heavy drinker, that one… does Madrak have to stage an intervention?) and walks into the zone, and then protectively casts Windwall and the Pyre Troll animus on himself (I forget about Lamentation because I’m an idiot).
The Earthborn walks up and riles for 3.
Lastly, the Stone walks over a bit and gives the ARM bonus and No Fire.
With that Todd finishes his turn. I’m still contesting the zone with a Bastion and an Errant, so no points yet.
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Menoth Turn 4
Hmmmm… trading Greygore for my Seneschal isn’t looking like such a good trade any more… but oh well. Gotta work with the cards Menoth deals you…
Kreoss upkeeps both spells (at this point remembering that I have Lamentation up and Borka was within range: too late to go back and make him pay double, damns it!). I allocates 3 to Redeemer and 2 to Reckoner again.
The last Errant activates and kills a Boomhowler, who fails to Tough. At least he’s going to go down swinging…
The Bastions go next and shuffle around a bit to open space for Reckoner to get to Pyre Troll. In the process, their attacks kill both Heroes and one Champion (one on the far right), none of which Tough.

Okay, this is better…

The Choir sings Battle again, but a semitone higher.

With the gap opened by my Bastions, my Reckoner walks up and destroys the Pyre troll with 3 attacks (Initial plus both bought). Todd is somewhat grateful, since he messed up his Fury allocation on his turn and was over by 2 Fury… he lets the Fury on the Pyre Troll vapourize as the warbeast dies.
A vassal moves up a bit and gives an Ancillary Attack to the Reckoner to hit the Objective and does 8 damage.
Next, the now autonomous Vanquisher moves up and fires shot at the Krielstone Bearer, but misses. The scatter manages to hit Kenny for 2 damage and wounds the Stone Scribe Elder also for 2 damage and then kills 1 Scribe.
The other Vassal gives an Ancillary Attack to the Vanquisher, which scatters onto Kenny and Elder again… but I again flub both damage rolls and fail to kill either.

Okay, there’s my luck again… oh well. It was nice while it lasted!

Vilmon activates, walks up to engage all 3 Champions on left side and gives himself Impervious Wall. What’s that you say? Champions don’t have magic weapons, and you have no way to GIVE them magic weapons in this list?
That’s okay… Vilmon is just there to talk a little bit about the Book of Menoth. This book will change your life…

The Redeemer walks up and shoots at a pair of Boomhowlers close to the Krielstone, hoping for a good scatter to kill either the Krielstone itself or at least more of the Scribes. The shot misses and scatters onto just the 2 Boomhowlers, and I choose not to boost. I crank the damage, killing 1 outright and the other Toughs. The Redeemer then buys another attack on the now knocked down Boomhowler, hitting him directly and the Scribe behind him in the blast. He Boomhowler Toughs again and I choose not to boost damage on the Scribe (stupid) and he fails to die. I spend my last Focus to buy another attack on the Scribe himself, but since he has Cover from a nearby rocky outcropping the shot misses and scatters away to nowhere. Blast.
Lastly, Kreoss activates and walks forward a little, just to stay relevant and hip with the kids (but mostly because now I remembered I had Lamentation and wanted to make it difficult/impossible for Borka to cast anything), and I’m done.
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Trolls Turn 4
All Todd needs to do this turn is kill 3 Bastions protected by Defender’s Ward and an Errant, and he can start dominating the zone. How difficult could that possibly be?
Borka pulls in all the Fury from the Earthborn and we’re off.
The Stone activates and gives its +2ARM and STR bonus to help with the war effort.
The remaining Boomhowlers move up and do a 2-man CMA to kill last Errant. Todd leaves a few near the back without moving them (either by design or by accident, I’m unsure… either way, only 2 of them did anything this turn).
The two Champions on far right hit a Bastion hard enough that I have him die rather than spreading out the damage (12 points in the first blow, I believe…). On the plus side, that means 1 of the Champions got to do nothing, since there was nothing else nearby.
The other unit of Champions kills another Bastion in the zone with a massive damage spike (10-12 points) but I spread out some more of the damage. This leaves me with 1 Bastions outside the zone, and 1 Bastion inside with 2 boxes.
The last unit of Champions, even engaged by Vilmon, are able to shuffle around a little and get a couple attacks on that last Bastion outside the zone, killing him handily… leaving just the 1 in the zone.
Toddd goes into the tank for a bit, and then comes up with a devious plan… Borka gets Topped Off first.
Borka activates and lobs a grenade at Boomhowler in B2B with last Bastion! Clever girl… the grenade actually manages to hit! The direct blast kills the Boomhowler (who fails to Tough), and then boosts damage but doesn’t wound the Bastion… on the other hand neither of the Champions hit by the blast are damaged either. He then pays the double-cost to cast Iron Flesh on himself and camps the last Focus (or two? I forget).
Lastly, the Earthborn walks up and riles, keeping him between my heavy warjacks and Borka.
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Menoth Turn 5
My Bastions have held the line, albeit by the thinnest of margins… but maybe it’s enough. If I can clear out a few more of Todd’s “functional” heavy hitters (ie: those not nicely tied up in theological discussions with Vilmon), I can probably pull this off… probably…
So, Kreoss upkeeps Lamentation and drops Defender’s Ward from the last Bastion (again, it ain’t gonna save him). I figure I’ll put Defender’s Ward on Kreoss (help keep him safe) or maybe my Reckoner (DEF14 and ARM21 is pretty solid for a heavy warjack!)… either way, I allocate 2 to the Reckoner and 3 to the Redeemer.

We start with the last Bastion taking a swing at a Champion… he hits! Sadly, I flub the damage roll (anyone want to count how many times I’ve said “flub the damage” in regards to my rolls this game!?) and only inflict 4.

Vilmon goes into Impervious Wall again, and smacks one of the Champions for blaspheming (I’m pretty sure that Menoth didn’t have a mother, and if he did, I doubt she was capable of doing the things that Champion implied)… he strikes him down with a great force, but the thick-skinned bastard Toughs.
The Choir sings Battle (this time in a minor key) and one of them walks into the zone. One Bastion with 2 boxes isn’t going to keep the zone contested, but if I can tie up more of Todd’s resources, maybe I can buy myself the time I need to clear those boys out…

The Vanquisher walks up and Threshers while engaging a Champion and the Objective. It destroys the Objective and kills the Champion, who fails to Tough.
This may seem somewhat random, but my Reckoner was engaging both of those Champions (the one discussing things with Vilmon and the recently-Threshered one). It is thus free to shoot, which it promptly does so, sending a flaming bolt of salvation into Borka. I boost to hit (Iron Flesh, yo), and manage to hit! Sweet… I also manage to roll a critical, lighting the Trollkin warlock on fire (bo-and-ya, my friends). But… say it with me… flub the damage roll and only inflict 2 points.
The Vassal gives an Ancillary Attack to the Reckoner, which also hits (I love Flare)… and
maybe writing it backwards will make it sting less? I bulf eht egamad llor.
Nope. Still stings. Anyway, 3 points of damage on the sturdy alcoholic.

My Redeemer activates, walks to get LoS to Borka, and opens fire. The first volley misses despite boosting to hit, but scatters onto him, so I elect to boost damage on Borka and inflict 3 more (leaving him on 7)… the blast also hits Kenny, who I boost against… and finally kills him! Hey, Kreoss might have a Feat this game after all!
For the record, while I’m pinging flaming bolts of glory off Borka’s forehead, the drunken master stumbles back and forth a couple fractions of an inch, ping-ponging off models nearby.

The Hierophant activates moves over a little and does Harmonious Exaltation.

I decide to see if I can’t thin the ranks a little. Kreoss walks up to the Champion that Vilmon knocked down and hits him with his mighty mace… and he Toughs again. I pull a Focus from a Wrack (declaring it will explode on a 2, 3, or 4… and not rolling any of those!)s and camps the last 3 Focus (and forgets to cast Defender’s Ward on Kreoss like I was planning, because I’m an idiot). Score 1 CP for destroying the Objective, and Menoth now leads in points 1-0!
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Trolls Turn 5
First things first… Borka’s fire doesn’t go out! WOO! I roll damage and get… nothing.

Some days I don’t know why I even bother burning warlocks…

Faced with the prospect of having to pay 2 Fury to upkeep “Iron Flesh” and without Kenny to be an enabler to Borka’s drinking problem, Todd drops the spell and pulls back in his 5 Fury.
The Champions get “Super Vengeance” from the death of Kenny and Todd gets cute… one blocks Vilmon’s LoS so the other can skirt around behind him. The knocked down one stays knocked down (although, technically, I think it has to stay knocked down). This puts that one Champion right in Kreoss’s back arc… and easily within range.
Can’t say I’m liking THAT…

The few remaining Boomhowlers activate and try to shoot the Choir close to Kreoss (the one between him and the Champion) but their RAT4 fails them and they all miss.
Todd activates the central unit of Champions, who take a couple attacks to finally kill my last Bastion.
The right-most unit charges my one Choir in the zone and a Vassal that had wandered a little too close… their attacks hit and gib both of them.

Do people still know “gibs”? It’s from my old Quake days… Menoth, I’m so old… anyway!

The far left unit of Champions activate… thanks to Todd’s brilliant stratagem,  the 1 that is no longer engaged by Vilmon walks up to Kreoss. Thankfully, he can’t engage my warcaster without being within 2″ of my Reckoner, giving Kreoss an effective DEF16… the first attack swings… and misses! He swings his second attack and hits… but finally feels the sting of my dice this game and only rolls 3 damage.

Borka activates and backs up but can’t get out of the 14″ bubble of Lamentation. As a result, he camps all 5 Fury.
The Krielstone walks up, does the aura for ARM and No Fire, which extinguishes the fire on Borka (damnation).
Lastly, the Earthborn walks a little and doesn’t rile. He does pretty effectively block LoS to Borka, though.
Still, with the zone cleared effectively, the Trolls score 2CP, making it 2-1 for them.
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Menoth Turn 6
On the plus side, Kreoss is still alive… and against a POW11 Weaponmaster, that’s not insignificant (theoretically he could inflict 11 points of damage in a single blow if he rolled triple 6s… unlikely, but Kreoss is still kinda lucky to have received so little damage!). I decide that it’s time to drop Lamentation (since I want to put Defender’s Ward on Kreoss anyway), and I allocate 3 Focus to Reckoner.

We start with Vilmon, who once again goes into Impervious Wall again is forced to apply corrective behavioral measures to one of the Champions… who does not Tough this time.

The Choir sings Battle (going into a minor key).

The Vanquisher walks up to engage 2 Stonebearers and a Champion and applies POW18 Threshers to their faces. The blow kills 1 Scribe, 1 Scribe manages to Tough, and damages a Champion (but doesn’t kill because Menoth hates my dice).

Next, the Reckoner activates and shoots the Earthborn, boosting both to hit and damage, and inflicts 5 points. At this point I verbally wonder what possessed me to give the Reckoner 3 Focus, since there’s no possible way it could actually use all of it… oh well.

The remaining Vassal walks into zone and gives Ancillary Attack to the Vanquisher, which smacks the damaged Champion it hit on its own turn, and kills it. No Tough, thankfully!

The Redeemer moves up in front of my Objective because I realize that if Todd “somehow” manages to kill that one lonely Vassal in the zone and destroy my objective, he’ll win on the spot… the Redeemer then shoots Borka but without Focus he misses. The shot clips the Earthborn… but can’t possibly wound it on a blast damage roll.

The Hierophant Harmonious Exalts. Also in a minor key, because why not?

Lastly, Kreoss activates, shuffles a little to get both remaining Champions from the left unit in his front arc and spends his initial attacks plus all his remaining Focus killing both (who Tough a couple times each, of course).
Still, the score is frozen at 2-1 for the Trolls… but the odds of my Vassal surviving the 3 remaining Champions? Let’s just say “slim”.
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Trolls Turn 6
This battle has gone on for awhile, but Todd can see the end in sight… Borka stays on his 5 Fury, and we start.
The unit of Champions with 2 remaining activates first and charge my Redeemer: 1 gets distance, hits both times, and cripples its mace.

Sure. Make HIS rolls good… I tell ya, dice these days!

The other Champion (technically a unit of 1 right now) charges the Vassal in the zone, but places himself to engage him and another Choir. He hits and vapourizes both (predictably).

The Earthborn finally gets into the fight! He slams my Vanquisher into the Reckoner, knocking both down and inflicting light damage on the Vanquisher.

The last of the Boomhowlers run up to tie-up Vanquisher, Redeemer, and Reckoner, and basically just make a nuisance of themselves.

Borka moves into middle of zone for “safety”. He spends 3 of his Fury to heal, and then camps the last 2.
Lastly, the Stone runs up and gives ARM and No Fire, but it’s a small radius with so few Scribes left and so doesn’t reach Borka. Todd scores 2 more CPs for dominating the zone, bringing the game to 4-1 for the Trolls.
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Menoth Turn 7
It is officially do-or-die time. Either I kill Borka and win, or I fail and lose. As a result, Kreoss drops everything, allocates 3 Focus to the Redeemer, 3 to the Reckoner (which immediately spends 1 to stand), and camps the last one.

One more time, the Choir sings Battle… sadly, I’m down to 2 members, so I have to chose between the Redeemer and the Vanquisher to get Menoth’s blessing. I elect to go with the Reckoner and Redeemer.

Next, the Hierophant Harmoniously Exalts.

Kreoss activates and walks into middle of Trolls… not his full movement, but close to it… and pops his Feat.
Menoth says “SIT”, and all the Trolls obligingly sit.

He then pulls in Focus from Wrack (which I finally roll as I’m supposed to, with it exploding on a 4, 5, or 6… and it promptly explodes), and I forget to cast a spell at Borka because I’m an idiot.

The Redeemer, now standing in a pile of sitting Trolls (probably singing Kumbaya or something like that) shoots at the knocked-down Borka. The first volley hits… and I decide to boost damage. I’m hitting at dice – 3… and I roll…….. 1, 1, 2.
1 point of damage.

Okay. I get it. Menoth doesn’t want me to win this game. Fine.
I buy an attack which hits and inflicts 4 damage. I spend the last Focus to buy one more attack which also hits and inflicts 3. Borka is now sitting on 2 Fury and 2 hitpoints.

The Vanquisher activates and gives up his movement to stand. He shoots, *just barely* getting Borka in range… he hits! I inflict 10 points of damage, which obviously Borka transfers over to the Earthborn. He’s also lit on fire, for what it’s worth…

The Reckoner activates and walks closer to Borka. He shoots… hits! Inflicts 7 damage, which Borka transfers over to the Earthborn again…

There is one slim ray of hope… if I can run Vilmon into the zone, I can keep Todd from scoring this round. THEN, if I’m really lucky (ha), Borka might continue to burn (ha), and I might inflict the needed 2 points of damage to kill him without any Fury to transfer (ha!).

Vilmon activates! He runs!
He ends up 0.5″ out of the zone!

That’s all she wrote… Todd scores 2 more CPs (well, technically scoring caps at 5, but whatever), and takes the game!

Victory to the Trollbloods!

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Post Game Analysis
Just for kicks, we rabbit-chase to see if Borka would’ve burned… and sure enough, the fire doesn’t go out and I inflict enough damage to kill him Gah! So close!

But also my own damn fault. Forgetting Lamentation one turn was awful, but forgetting to take the shot with Kreoss (either a boosted-damage POW12 or an unboosted POW14) was stupid. Also, my dice just weren’t having any of it… too many awful, awful damage rolls. I don’t like blaming my dice, though, and if I were on my game I still had this game. But still, a little help woulda been nice!

I want to thank Todd for agreeing to be on the podcast and for playing a new Faction we’ve never had the joy of getting on Combo Smite (well, aside from the 2 times I’ve played Trolls in tournaments and the one or two times I’ve played against them on VASSAL online), and for being such an awesome opponent.

I’m still going to burn all your stuff next time, Gingerstein… just so we’re clear on that.

Comments, questions, and mockery goes in the comments!

Scores:
Todd,

Feat Use: N/A
Tactics: 3
Scenario: 4
Luck: 4
Time Use: N/A
Derptitude: 1

Marc,

Feat Use: 4
Tactics: 3
Scenario: 3
Luck: 2
Time Use: N/A
Derptitude: 2

8 thoughts on “Podcast 027 – Menoth vs Trolls, pKreoss vs Borka: Weaponmaster Mosh Pit…

  1. Great battle there!
    Careful with destroying your own objective, I think that scores your opponent a point (citation needed) – gonna look that one up.
    Also: Borka love! Borka would probably be the reason why I could pick up Trolls ^^ Bonus points for tier!

    • I’m pretty sure you only get points if you destroy the enemy objective… but maybe they changed it in 2014 and I didn’t notice? I’ll look into it.

      And Borka does seem like a lot of fun… the “Stumbling Drunk” rule is… interesting? Potentially life-saving from melee attacks, but otherwise just kinda weird… but I like it! And his immunity to Knock Down certainly helped this game!

      Thanks for the comment!

  2. Thanks for the report.

    If you don’t like Hero’s Tragedy, try Kreoss 2 and Sacrosanct. Apply to Daughters of the Flame, run into opposing army, annoy opponent in exactly the same way.

    In terms of your list, I’d agree about removing the Vanquisher from the Bastion Seneschal. I’ve been playing against one and found he’s good with a light that doesn’t need much focus: Repenter is good, but Vigilant can be really nice, just as a self-contained module of high-ARM objective claiming and being annoying.

    Maybe shift the Vanquisher to Kreoss instead of the Revenger (it nothing else it’s a focus hog, but also with ancillary attack you’ve got a fair amount of AoE anyway)? Give the Seneschal a 4 point light and drop Vilmon. Use the saved points for Daughters of the Flame (2 anatomical precision attacks each is great on Kresoss’s feat turn, and they’re generally useful all the time).

    • Thanks for the feedback! Some excellent suggestions… I’m really looking forward to Sacrosanct on Kreoss2! Heck, I’m really looking forward to Kreoss2 in general… awesome Feat, some neat spells, and he himself has some utility (and Armour Piercing!).

      I actually don’t own a Vigilant yet… or a Dervish, now that I think about it. 2 Revengers (or 3?), 1 Redeemer, a Revenger, and a Devout… so for lights, it’s the Revenger or nothing. I’m actually thinking that a Sanctifier would work wonders with the Seneschal and a unit of Zealots for fuel… maybe 2… on a warcaster that doesn’t want to share Focus (which I admit I can’t think of one in the Protectorate right now… maybe the High Reclaimer?).

      I also don’t own Daughters yet… DX
      But I’m trying! I’m holding off on buying new units until I finish painting the stuff I’ve got (Judicator, Vessel, 2 units of Knight Exemplars and a Knight Exemplar Seneschal, Holy Zealots, Tristen, and Temple Flameguard… not that bad, actually!). But Daughters are top of the list for acquisitions (them and Nicia, who looks interesting!)

      Thanks for the comments and suggestions! I really appreciate!

  3. A few wrong rules here. Ancillary Attack only works on a model once. So, no double Ancillaries on that Vanquisher. You also can’t use focus on a Jack when you Ancillary, as the attack is during the Vassals activation, not the Jacks. Wracks only explode on a 1, 2, or 3, you don’t declare what they explode on. And, the most important rule, which you did get punished heavily for “If you don’t truly believe in Menoth, he will burn you.” And your dice showed it.

    Good report, regardless, I love ComboSmite!

    • Thanks for the feedback and the props!

      I don’t think I double-Ancillary Attacked the Vanquisher at any point… I’m normally pretty careful about that. Usually I use one with the Reckoner, and one with the Vanquisher… helps to get “Flare” onto two models!

      Technically, yes, Wracks explode (on a 4,5,6 I believe), but statistically it’s just 50/50. I normally pick 3 numbers because I could never remember if they exploded on 1-3 or 4-6 and so I would declare it out loud to remove any confusion, but after Todd complained this game (and with good reason) I’ve been sticking to the 4-6 = Boom written on the card!

      And yes, my faith in Menoth was weak this game… ^_^

      Thanks for the comments! Glad you’re enjoying the podcast and battle reports!

      • Yeah, I misread one paragraph and it looked like a double Anc’d Vanquisher. That’s internet dyslexia, for you. Wracks explode on a 1,2 or 3, as it says on the card. I was thinking of how much more engaging picking the numbers would be, though, and it would be like a mini-game of “test your faith.” Though I don’t care for a MK 3 or 2.5 or whatever the new forum vogue is, if they come out with it, I’d like that on the card.

        I’m curious, though, how often, and when, you enliven, because I still haven’t figured out a good time to do that over ancillarying the jack that charged in and needs that one last hit to kill something.

      • @Internet Nomad: No worries about the double Ancillary… it’s certainly not impossible that I mistype or misremembered it!

        As for the Death Blast on 1-3… see, THIS is why I always announce instead! Even after “correcting” it, I was getting it wrong! Gah! Oh well. At least now I know (again!), and will do it correctly from now on.

        As for “Enliven”… yeah, that’s a tough one. Normally, it’s a question for me on whether the warjack will be within “Ancillary” range after it’s activation or not. For example, if I’m charging a Reckoner away from my Vassal, there’s a very good chance that I won’t be close enough to use an Ancillary Attack afterwards… so I put up Enliven first. There are other situations (my shot was out of range, nothing worth killing nearby, etc…), but I’m normally not good enough of a player to identify them all the time!

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