It’s been a while since I did a battle report, so when my wife and I set up a game a few weeks ago I thought I might as well get back into the habit of trying to write and play at the same time! I’m also trying out using bold for actions and abilities to try and balance my thematic-style of writing I prefer with an informative description of what was happening. Let me know if you like it or not.
The stage was set for the classic versus-the-wife showdown of Guild against Arcanists. The Strategy was Stake a Claim, with the scheme pool sitting at Breakthrough, Make Them Suffer, Bodyguard, Outflank, and the ubiquitous A Line in the Sand.
Lady Justice – Thalarian Stone
The Judge – Lead-Lined Coat
Francisco Ortega – Wade In, Plant Evidence
The Lone Marshal
Marcus – Arcane Reservoir, The Trail Of The Gods
Myranda – Imbued Energies
Arcane Emissary – Raging Conflux
I chose A Line in the Sand and Outflank, both revealed, while Kathryn took Outflank and Bodyguard on the Judge – choosing to reveal Outflank and keep Bodyguard secret.
Turn one saw Francisco bestow El Mayor on Lady Justice before moving up the left flank, accompanied by Lady Justice and The Judge. The Lone Marshal spurred his horse forward and galloped down the right flank, making a beeline for one of the Squat markers. Marcus took on the Agility of the Hare, walking forward before exerting his dominance and using Alpha on the Waldgeist, the indigenous creature walking forward before plunging its roots into the ground, using Germinate to engage the lawman and prevent him from interacting to claim the Squat marker. Seeing that the Guild were advancing cautiously, one of the Silurids Leapt forward to claim a Squat marker for the Arcanists.
Gunfire pierced the dusk as turn 2 began. Experience and skill honed over long years, the Lone Marshal spurred his horse out of the razor-thicket of vines the Waldgeist had summoned with Germinte, using his famed Trick Shooting. All the experience and skill in the world couldn’t defy fate, however, as the Black Joker made an early appearance for his damage flip, leaving the Waldgeist unharmed. Cursing under his breath, the Marshal rode his horse back into the Waldgeist, engaging the creature to prevent it from claiming the nearby Squat marker. Seeing the Marshal abandon the farthest Squat marker, my Silurid Leapt forward to mark it for the Arcanists.
On the other flank, my second Waldgeist walked forward, using Germinate to summon a thicket of vegetation to engage both Francisco Ortega and the Lady Justice. Not to be deterred, Justice strode forward, her razor-edged Greatsword cutting through the Waldgeist in one stroke as Kathryn flipped the Red Joker for damage with a double Critical Strike. Following her lead, Francisco walked forward, preparing to claim the other farthest Squat marker next turn.
In the centre of the board, the Arcane Emissary charged into one of the Death Marshals standing on the station platform. His Elemental Rage sent the Guild officer reeling, and the primal fury of his Relentless Charge sent the marshal sprawling to the floor. Using Rage Forth, it moved towards the Silurid on the left flank.
Planting the symbol of the Guild on the Squat marker next to him, the Judge turned his attention to the Emissary, attempting to pull it towards him for retribution. The Emissary resisted the Judge’s attempt to make it Stand For Judgement, stubbornly holding its ground. Meanwhile, Myranda moved to the central Squat marker, claiming it for Marcus while on the platform above her the Guild Rifleman Focused twice, scanning the area through his clockwork scope.
On the right flank, the Waldgeist managed to Walk away from the Lone Marshal, the tangle of vines and thorns it had summoned disappearing as it moved. Leaving the Marshal’s engagement, the forest spirit Interacted to take the final Squat marker. In response, the remaining Death Marshal leapt off the station platform to Charge. As he neared the ground, he spun, kicking his enchanted Pine Box towards the Waldgeist. His aim was true, and the forest spirit didn’t even have time to react before the box slammed shut, trapping it inside. In response, Marcus channelled the Strength Of The Bear through his body, feeling its primal force well up inside him. A sharp crack split the air as the Guild Rifleman fired as Marcus Charged into the Death Marshal, wounding but not stopping the Beastmaster as he barrelled forward. Despite having just landed from a flying leap, the Marshal reacted quickly, bringing up his Peacebringer. Fast as he was, though, Marcus was faster, his Shillelagh smashing the lawman to the ground. As the Marshal collapsed, his willpower holding the box shut waned, and the Waldgeist stumbled out. I scored one VP from the strategy, and the third turn began…
Ben: 1 Kathryn: 0
Taking the initiative in Turn 3 and hoping to neutralise the threat before she could act, the Arcane Emissary Charged into Lady Justice. Its Elemental Rage hit true, Slowing the Lady, but its attempt to push her into the nearby Hazardous swamp with Relentless Charge failed. Pushing back towards Myranda, the Emissary used Of Flesh And Metal, letting Marcus’s mate Interact to drop a scheme marker on the centreline.
Seeking to assist Lady Justice and reclaim the nearby Squat marker, the Judge attacked the Emissary, his Long Arm Blade cutting into the creature. Expertly handling the unique weapon, he fired the built-in pistol at short range, damaging the Emissary again. Seeing the creature still standing he tried to disengage, but the Emissary held him in place.
Seeing the Lone Marshal spurring his horse, Marcus summoned the Strength of the Bear, dropping a scheme marker before moving towards the lawman. His Shillelagh knocked the man from the horse, leaving him unconscious on the ground. The Rifleman drew a bead on the Arcanist, but before he could fire the Waldgeist moved into melee, attacking the guardsman but only wounding him. The man backed off, firing his rifle at the nearby Silurid. The shot hit true, killing the creature in one shot. Seeing another one of their beasts fall, Myranda charged into the Rifleman before he could reposition, her Cobra Fang cutting deep and leaving the man lying on the floor. Her bones cracked and fur sprouted along her back as she transformed, her ability to Shapechange letting her into a Sabretooth Cerberus.
Meanwhile, at the other end of the table, Francisco claimed a Squat marker for the Guild. The Judge charged into the Emissary, wounding the creature but not managing to land the killing blow. The surviving Silurid Leapt forward (flipping the Red Joker) to drop a scheme marker, while the Sabretooth Cerberus was unable to propel itself into the air, failing to Leap after the Silurid.
Ben: 2 Kathryn: 1
Turn 4 saw the Arcanists taking the initiative, with the Emissary charging Lady Justice in an attempt to pre-emptively neuter the threat. Both attacks did weak damage, with his Relentless Charge pushing Justice away. In response her lieutenant tried to Walk away, but a lucky Red Joker flip by the Arcane Emissary kept him held in place. Not to be deterred, the Judge managed to escape the Emissary on his second attempt, using Stand For Judgement to draw Lady Justice back into the fight.
Attempting to complete the Emissary’s work before she could heal, Marcus’s Sabretooth Cerberus Charged into Lady Justice, dealing severe damage on its first strike. The Guild’s juggernaut was ready for the second, however, expertly parrying the creature with a Riposte and cutting it deep. She retaliated, crushing the Thalarian stone in one hand and summoning the power locked inside to bind her wounds shut. Ducking under the massive paws, her Greatsword attack hit true, with the Red Joker finishing the Sabretooth in one mighty strike.
While the Guild were distracted, the nearby Silurid Leapt into position, dropping a scheme marker before claiming the nearby Squat marker. Seeing the swampfiend, Francisco took aim, his Peacebringer barking and wounding the creature, but not killing it. Seeing his beasts wounded, Marcus took on the Agility of the Hare, bounding across the table before exerting his Alpha power over the Silurid. Spurred on by Marcus, the creature disappeared towards the corner of the board, hoping to return at the end of the next turn for my hidden Outflank scheme. And, as the turn ended, the Guild revealed the Bodyguard scheme on the Judge.
Ben: 3 Kathryn: 2
Seeking to stop the Judge now his strategic importance had been revealed, the Arcane Emissary charged into him. Its Elemental Rage only scratched him, but its Relentless Charge was enough to send the Judge flying backwards, landing in the hazardous terrain of a nearby swamp. Quick to retaliate, Francisco fanned his Peacebringer into the Emissary, damaging the creature but not managing to kill it.
Attempting to intervene, Marcus called upon the Fury Of The Tiger, walking to the Emissary before attacking it with his Shillelagh and granting it the Beast characteristic. Urging the now-bestial Emissary to new heights, Marcus exerted his Alpha strength, and the Emissary attacked again, charging the Judge in one final attempt to finish him. Despite both attacks striking the lawman, the Judge was made of stern stuff and stood standing defiantly after the dust settled. Justice moved to support him, Interacting to pat down the flames and save her lieutenant from burning to death. The stalwart Judge moved further into the Arcanists half of the board, while the badly wounded Silurid tried to reach the centreline for Outflank, only to find that he’d positioned himself too far and couldn’t reach it in time…
Ben: 4 Kathryn: 3
And with that the game ended. I scored the full three points for A Line In The Sand and two more for partially completing Outflank, while Kathryn scored another two points for Bodyguard – leaving the final scores at 9 for the Arcanists, and 5 for the Guild.
So what did I learn from the game? I haven’t been using The Law Of Meat enough – it’s a very powerful action with a high Ca, and I’m a firm believer in the notion that shutting a model down is just as good as killing it in a game where AP is such a valuable resource.
In other news, I’ll be attending Shattered Heart in Doncaster, and running a demo day of my own around the Lancaster area soon.