Sunday, June 24, 2012

Steampunk Sunday - Warmachine "Coming of the Colossals" Tournament

This past Saturday I played in my first 50 point Warmachine/Hordes Steamroller tournament at Gamer's Sanctuary. This tournament used the 2012 Privateer Press Steamroller rules and scenarios. Each player was required to bring two different casters/50pt-lists with no repeat named characters/units. You also had to use each list at list once in the three round tournament. The first place prize was a certificate for one of the new Colossals (or Gargantuans) coming out later this year.

I have been playing a lot of smaller point games with my Retribution army in Gamer Sanctuary's Steamroller escalation league. But I found building 50 points lists challenging for this tournament.  Also, the tournament used a turn timer with 10 minutes per player turn and one 5 minute extension. I had low expectations for my first big tournament, but I ended up doing pretty well. I certainly feel like every game provides a lot of learning as I try and remember all my units special rules and the best activation sequence.
My two 50 points lists were fully painted and shared some non unique units
I decided to keep it simple and build two similar lists. There is probably some more strategy required when attending a tournament to build two diverse lists so you do not get a bad match up.  However, I was concerned about completing my turns within the time limit so I went two fairly shoot-first lists.

  List #1                                                                      List#2
  Army Name: Ossyan 50 pts                                     Army Name: Ravyn 50
  Retribution of Scyrah                                                Retribution of Scyrah 
  50+6 points, 35 models                                             50+6 points, 34 models

  Lord Arcanist Ossyan  +6 points                             Ravyn, Eternal Light  +6 points
    * Banshee  10 points                                               * Discordia  10 points
    * Hypnos  9 points                                                 Arcanist  1 point
    * Sylys Wyshnalyrr, The Seeker  2 points             Arcantrik Force Generator  10 points
  Arcanist  1 point                                                       10 Dawnguard Sentinels  9 points
  10 Dawnguard Sentinels  9 points                            * Sentinel Officer & Standard  2 points
   * Griffon  4 points                                                    * 1 Soulless Escort  1 point       
   * Sentinel Officer & Standard  2 points                 Fane Knight Skeryth Issyen  5 points
   * 1 Soulless Escort  1 point                                    House Shyeel Artificer  3 points
  Eiryss, Angel of Retribution  3 points                    10 Mage Hunter Strike Force  8 points
  10 Mage Hunter Strike Force  8 points                   * Mage Hunter Commander  2 points
   * Mage Hunter Commander  2 points                   Stormfall Archers  5 points
Stormfall Archers  5 points

Reinforcements: *Manticore 8 points                       Reinforcements: *Phoenix 10 points
          Mage Hunter Assassin 2 points

So both lists have a lot of shooting with some melee punch to back it them up.  Ossyan and Ravyn have good feats and spells for shooting lists.   I do not have enough of the models required to run any tier lists but generally they limit your options too much.  There were two other RoS players at the tournament and it was fun to discuss the merits of of various units that we have as our favorites.

In my first game I faced off against a Cygnar player using Major Markus 'Siege' Brisbane.  I don't have all hist list details, but he was running a Storm Strider.  I decided to use my Ravyn list and have a Battle-Engine face off.  We were playing a scenario that required interactive objectives that had to be claimed and dragged into control zones by the warcaster.  My opponent went first and I could tell his strategy was to try and destroy my objective.  On turn two he brought it down below half strength from one turn of shooting.  Fortunately for me I was able to get lucky and knock his caster down with a shot from my battle engine which slammed a nearby medium jack into him.  With his caster on the ground, Ravyn gave the MHSF snipe and popped her feat for insurance.  The MHSF was able to take Brisbane down at range and I won on caster kill in turn 2.  I got a bit lucky this game, but I was surprised my opponent didn't use his other list that had the Cygnar colossal in it!
My first opponent had a Stormwall in the list he didn't use against me
In my second game I played against Vogrin from Dark Future Games in Lansing.  He was playing a heavy infantry Khador list with Epic Sorscha.  I decided to run Ossyan this time and hope for my shooting blasts to hit home. The scenario we played involved two central control zones that could only be claimed once each.  I realized quickly this game that I positioned several units poorly.  Most of my shooting units only covered one of the control zones and my melee infantry were bogged down in terrain without pathfinder.  Vogrin did a good job of pushing me out of the control zones for a scenario win against me.  I had a hard time dealing with infantry that had Tough or Shieldwall Arm 18+.  Definitely a learning experience for me that 50 points games will include a lot of infantry.

In my third game I played against another Retribution player running Ossyan.  His list was very similar to my Ossyan list.  I decided to play my Rayvn list again and see if I could out-range him in shooting.  We were playing another control zone scenario on a board that had a lot of rivers to cross.  This game also used the reinforcements rule.   I was able to win on scenario scoring 3-1 on control points.  It was a tough game as we were matched up well, but I was able to contest his zone longer and claim my objective to score the win.

So I went 2-1 on the day and ended up in sixth place.  A Cryx player from Lansing went 3-0 and won his choice of Colossal. I did win "best-painted" though I was the only person with a fully painted army.  It was a fun day of games.  Thanks to Michael Stokes for setting up the tournament and doing a lot of preparation work.  The control zones he cut out were really helpful for determining objectives.
Control zones were changed per scenario and clearly marked before terrain was placed

I had a lot of fun. My MVPs of the day were definitely the Mage Hunter Strike Force and surprisingly my Battle Engine. Looking forward to more list tweaking for the next one!


  1. Makes me wish I had come, if nothing else than to give you a run for Best Painted! That seems to be one of the biggest differences between 40k and Warma/Hordes players; I think competitive 40K players are more likely to also have completely painted stuff.

    1. Yeah. There was a lot of nicely painted models but no other fully painted army. Winning by default wasn't my intention, but I did get a lot of painting in the week in preparation for the tournament.

  2. @tau4eva - I didn't get to see all the armies that were out there on Saturday but, I have seen your army before Adam (up close and personal as they were putting the boots to my Blindwater Congregation) and I would have to say that even if there were more fully painted armies, yours would still have been a force to reckon with in the painting category. Your army looks really good. It's easily one of the best Retribution armies I've seen.

  3. I am looking forward to painting up my Trolls and trying to make it to one of these 50 point tournaments. I played my first 35 point game this weekend while I was at my Warhammer GT and it was pretty fun to get to have a lot more on the table.