Monday, January 18, 2010

Playtesting- Adepticon Fantasy Championships.

That's certainly one way to deal with a Steam Tank!

So Steve and I got down to some playtesting for Adepticon last Saturday, trying out some different armies and lists. Both of us having difficultly deciding who and what to run.
As previously posted my choices are my Empire and my Daemons of Chaos, while Empire are the old standby at this point, 2000 points and the WPS comp score being directly added to your overall as the comp score has thrown a different strategic element into the mix. I have a couple different Empire Lists, both in the 14-15 WPS range, While my DoC list is a 10 (9.65)
Steve brought a low WPS Daemon list in the 6 range, and a Lizardmen list that was a whopping WPS 21 (25 being max). We decided to play Empire vs Daemons and Lizards vs Daemons..but after the fact I realized that a DoC vs DoC then an Empire vs Lizardmen match up is what we should have done because they are more realistic 1st round match ups given the comp scores.

Game 1 Daemons of Chaos vs The Empire
Arch Lector on a Barded WarHorse
2 Level 2 Wizards
44 Swordsmen broken into 26 and 2-9 man detachements
2 x 10 handgunners with HLR's
2 10 man units of Freecompany
20 Flagellants
5 Pistoliers with Champ
2 Cannons
Steam Tank

Daemons of Chaos-
2 Khorne Heralds on Juggernauts (Aoc/FB kit)
one is the General one is BSB with Unholy victory
Herald of Slannesh

2 x 15 Bloodletters
15 Daemonettes
2 x 5 Flesh hounds
unit of 3 Fiends

I went the MSU route with an actual Magic Phase for change, much different than my last couple years of tournament Empire. Not taking a BSB is hard change for me..but I am getting used to it. My setup had one unit of handgunners and a Freecompany unit in the backfield looking to protect each cannon on different ends of the table, I had my Stank, Flaggies and my Swordsman up the middle. The Swordsman block had my Arch Lector and one Wizard in it, the Other wizard was in the back field and couple move around freely between handgunner and freecompany units. I had the Lore of Light and Lore of Fire and lucky rolled and "6" and "1" for both wizards..meaning both Cleansing Flare and Wall of Fire.

Things where definitely in my favor most of the game..with only 2 dispel dice for the Daemons I got alot of spells off even with the Magic Resistance, Steve charged both Heralds out into the Stank..I saved off all but one wound 1st turn and but despite 7, strength 6 attacks a the heralds I only managed 1 wound on the BSB, subsequent turns then destroyed the Stank, but I ended up putting 1 wound on the general and killing the BSB with a cannon. On my right side I shot up steve's hounds and killed Herald of Slannesh on a Stand and Shoot..I thinned out the Daemonettes a bit, but even flanking them my free company's dice were shit and I could get them. I put a serious hurt on both units of Bloodletters..tying one up with a Wall a Fire really saved me from getting charged on numerous fronts, and shooting the blazes out of the other with both my pistoliers. I put myself in the best position I could charging 7 Bloodletter with 45 Swordsmen and two static res alone was +6, I totally wiffed on the dice only killed a couple steve was popping on a 7 on the break rolls a 5, loses 3 more and sticks with two models..which allows his General and fiends to Flank charge me next turn. If I had killed those two bloodletters I would have overrun and escaped the flank charge and most likely have won the game..but it didn't happen. Trying to salvage things I had a turn 6 screw up trying to kill the Daemonettes with my Free Company, figuring If can get them below half (only 1 model) and stick I pick up some points..I wiff again, lose the unit and the table quarter..stupid move I could have held and kept 150 points. In the end I lose with Solid Victory to Steve..I could have very easily won this game but didn't because of two things.


The list is pretty good, my magic phase was great, shooting was great, my pistoliers combined with the other shooting were so much more useful..then they usually are with alot less shooting. My problem was combat, and Arch Lector while great for leadership and prayers..just sucks in combat.needing support and survirability items over weapons he's got 2, Strength 4 attacks when other character in the unit is a wizard and you have a S3, T3're screwed if you not fighting Skinks or Rats..I've reconfigured this list dropping the Arch Lector for a Empire General and Warrior priest..both on foot you still get leadership 9, a prayer..with you might actuall get off with two level '2's on the board. and giving me 5 Str 6 attacks in close combat..way more useful, plus I still get hatred from the Warrior priest. trade off is I have to cut 100 points somewhere else. switching up the Handgunners to Crossbows...saves me 50 points, I lose the HLR's but gain 6 inches of range. I also drop one unit of Free company and changing my detachments from Swordsmen back to free company (the extra attacks are worth it). This allows me to keep one unit of free company in the back field plus give it a Standard...I'll be trying this list out next time to compare. The other issue is- I need to learn not give points away last turn on gambles..I always do this and I get burned 4 out of 5 times. leave the points on the table, dummy. In a tourney...if your losing to a Solid...keeping it to minor isnt a big deal but a Draw is..even after losing my main block..I could have kept this to draw if I managed my last 2 turns better. (of course the problem unless you know your opponents army very well, your unlikely to know what you're losing by).
Steve's list is solid hard hitting DoC list..he's really going only going to run into problems against heavy magic and shooting lists...and he can still manage it well with a little luck.

Game 2 Daemons of Chaos vs Lizardmen

Daemons of Chaos
Great Unclean One, Trappings, Nurgle Infestation, Level 3 Wiz
Nurgle of Herald, BSB (Sundering) Palaquin, Slime Trail

15 Plagebearers FC
15 Bloodletters FC x 2
5 Flesh hound
3 nurgling bases
2 beasts of Nurgle

2- Saurus Hero one on Foot, One a Cold One
Skink Chief
Lv 2 Skink Priest
15 Saurus Warriors w/ Spears x 2
3 Krogigors
5 Cold One Cav
4 Terradons
Salamander Pack
Razordon Pack
Chameleon Skinks
3-4 other units of Skinks..mixed rank and skirmish.

Ok, WPS 21 Lizardmen, No Slaan, No Engines, No Stegadons versus a 10-ish WPS DoC list with a Greater Deamon, should be a blow out right?, Nope...One thing I am sure of is I don't know what the hell I am doing with Daemons and I am running a list solely based on wanting to use my FW GUO- but the the reality is in the numbers. Steve's list is 130 models versus my 57, and that 73 model difference is all shooting!. My GUO rolls some nasty spells, Rancid Visitation, the Pox, plus I have Miasma if I every get into CC. Steve blows my Dogs off the table 1st turn throwing about 100 shots into them along with the rock drop. My Beasts (one on each flank) are a huge pain for Steve plus my Nurgling unit is growing by one base a turn..Steve charges the Flank of my Herald and his Plaguebearers and bounces off- getting run down..he then goes into point denial mode kills off all the easier stuff he can, (my Bloodletters). I do have alot of his army running at various time, but cold blooded absolutely can save your but against any psychology army, and only one unit runs off the board. I did make a couple tactical errors..I should have charged my GUO a few times into some smaller units for easy points instead I held choosing to cast spells. trying to take down heroes for bigger points..Steve killed his magic phase putting dice in Diadem for the dispeling my spells, and even though I got alot of Rancid Visitations and Pox's off he kept making alot of the 50/50 toughness i came up short...after he took my beast down from constant nurglings died on a wiffed combat and bad break test (an 11 or 12) and popped against Skinks!.
Shooting got my Herald and his unit down 1/2 with Everything else dead, even my 635 point GUO untouched..I couldn't kill enough to get any leverage..easily controling 3 table quarters for a bonus 300..gave Steve a solid victory over a marginal on kill points alone., I was baffled it wasnt closer but there were just too many units.


This list is tough, but is going to have problems against any tough magic phase or or heavy shooting MSU, even against Empire multiple cannons into the GUO even with my extra save could be disasterous. I tweaked list a bit to try to get more out of it, but came to conclusion to really be effective it needs to be an all nurgle list bumping the WPS to 13, ideally 15 so your get a good first round match up. With more magic and two heralds, and lots of stuff rengenerating it some legs..since I dont have the models or the inclanation to do this I think, my GUO is going to be staying on the Shelf this year..I'll give it couple more games before I seal the deal.


Contrary to popular opinion on some forums I frequent, The popular theory of taking as low a WPS score as possible and trying to outgun/outmuscle your opponent, while still viable has a definite flipside. High WPS, MSU armies with some pychology protection and either strong shooting /magic or a balance are going to do very well, Steve's list is great example, he got the win with a 11 point WPS lead on me..looking at that game as a potential round 2 match up, Steve could easily be in the top tables round 3. Contrary to popular opinion I think high WPS Scoring MSU armies are going to be something to watch out for I see Lizards, Dark Elves and Skaven all doing very well with various configurations outside the normal "big monster/s" plus army concept. More playtesting is required but I think I am going this route with the Empire. Steve and I still need to throw down Lizards vs Empire for a general round 1 match list analysis..more soon, we're going to keep playtesting


Michael said...

Interesting. I am planning on heading to Adepticon as well. I will probably be running a Lizardmen list in the low 20s. I had it at 25 for a while, but have been tweaking it.

Where was the diadem at in that list. I didn't see skink priest, but I am assuming he had one somewhere, also it would have to be a level 2 in order to store both dice as the new book says he can only store his own dice.

John@Plastic Legions said...

yes, thanks for pointing out that oversight. Steve's list included a level 2 Skink Priest with the Diadem..I had forgotten him as Steve had him running loose hiding in some forests..even thou he had the Comet ..he choose never to cast it..saving the dice with the Diadem to dispel the GUO's nastiness.

Michael said...

I look forward to seeing more reports on your preparation for Adepticon. The current list I am playing with is aprox:
3 Scar Vets
Skink Priest on EotG
2 x 10 Skink Skirmishers
2 x 18 Saurus with spears
3 Terradons
5 CO Cav.
1 Salamander with extra handler

I think the Lizardmen can really get a fairly solid build with a fairly high WPS score.

TrekkerYu said...

Good read. Steve is always on top of this game, so practice games with him are well worth it.

Hopefully we can get a game in - at the A-con primer or otherwise.


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