Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Marching on the Western Reaches - Skorne Progression with Mordikaar and Makeda1, AdeptiCon thoughts

You may have noticed recently that the blog has been slow. Unfortunately this time of the year is one of our busiest. School is in session for our education-related job dudes and my work has been extremely busy with a lot of different projects.

We also went to AdeptiCon, the largest pure miniatures gaming convention in the MidWest. I had a great time and previously talked about my experience with the Big Brawl in the WHFB room. I'm going to detail out what I thought of my PP experience there in this article, but first I'm going to talk about some of the Warlocks I'm working on.

I had previously posted that I was going to work on three warlocks in 2014: Xerxis, pMorghoul, and Hexeris2. This was a little overzealous; I really like these warlocks but I don't think I can use them for the rest of 2014. I feel like I've been playing Skorne long enough now (since about November 2012) that I can probably try out Warlocks for a few weeks and learn them. Hexeris2 is really powerful but I had a few poor experiences with him at MICUP, so I am down on him right now. Morghoul is really fun but I feel like I've learned him pretty well now; he has a shtick for sure.

I'm still sticking by Xerxis because he's my favorite and he's very competitive. I'm now trying Makeda1 and Mordikaar. I really like Mordikaar mainly because the new character heavy warbeast Despoiler is finally out. Despoiler's model has been much maligned but I actually used a regular ole' rhinodon head for it and I think it looks a lot better. I also moved his arms as much as I could to avoid the surfing pose.

Not a great picture, and I think I may add some OSL to his lanterns, but you get the idea. I am really excited for this dude because it is another character warbeast in a faction that doesn't have many. He also has a sweet sweet interaction with Mordikaar - for every living dude he kills a void spirit is produced that can then activate normally (once per turn). Mordikaar boosts attack rolls for void spirits. Dirty D can also allow a warlock to upkeep a spell for free (always amazing) and his animus doubles the cost of upkeeps or cast spells within 10" of him. He is only Def11 and Arm18 which is rough but you probably don't want him going up against heavies anyway.

Mordikaar's list is as such:
Void Seer Mordikaar - WB: +5
-    Despoiler - PC: 10
-    Basilisk Krea - PC: 4
-    Cyclops Shaman - PC: 5
Nihilators - Leader & 9 Grunts: 8
Paingiver Beast Handlers - Leader 3 Grunts: 2
Cataphract Cetrati - Leader & 5 Grunts: 11
-    Tyrant Vorkesh - PC: 3
Cataphract Incindiarii - Leader &; 5 Grunts: 9
Tyrant Commander & Standard Bearer - Tyrant and Standard: 3
Mordikaar and Despoiler hang back a bit to provide support. The krea and shaman are front line support; shaman casts Despoiler or Krea animus when necessary. Nihilators receive Hollow ASAP to jam across the field with undead and tough, providing souls for Mordikaar and being key revive targets. Cetrati cannot be targeted by spells because of Vorkesh; the incindiarii receive Mordy's no spell targeting spell. This is definitely my anti-Cryx drop with so many ways to stop spells. This is also great for super solos like Makeda3, Caine?, Butcher, Strkyer2, etc. 

The only thing I'd worry about in this list is timed turns. It has shooting with Incindiarii and scatters and a lot of spell casting from Mordy. I can attrition peeps down but I better score some points for dice down.

Makeda is interesting to me in all her forms. I've played Makeda3 extensively, Makeda2 about a half dozen times, and Makeda1 never. I really like her fluff; she's a strong woman who wants to lead her empire to glory and take back the reins of their dominance in the west. She has really sweet rules in all her incarnations, but Mak1 and Mak2 really provide more of an army buffer type game instead of the super solo game that Mak3 provides. She has also done really well with the mammoth in Jason Watt's list so I am going to test out a variant of that.

The list I'm bringing with Makeda1 is fairly simple.
Archdomina Makeda - WB: +5
-    Aptimus Marketh
-    Mammoth - PC: 20
-    Basilisk Krea - PC: 4
-    Cyclops Raider - PC: 5
Cataphract Cetrati - Leader & 5 Grunts: 11
Nihilators - Leader & 9 Grunts: 8
Mortitheurge Willbreaker - PC: 2
Paingiver Beast Handlers - Leader & 3 Grunts: 2
Makeda casts Savagery on the Mammoth first turn so it can move 9". The raider casts snipe on the Mammoth. Willbreaker does ancillary attack allowing mammy to shoot one AOE4 up to 23" from my starting deployment line. This can really help you do some early attrition or snipe out key support stuff if you get lucky. The mammy casts Counterblast animus just in case before it ends its activation to counter jam stuff.

Marketh is there to upkeep spells and cast Savagery on extra units so you can speed everywhere up the board. Nihilators have a walking threat of 13" with Savagery which is really intense. Cetrati can shield wall, move 9", then threat another 2" with weapon master pow11s. It is fairly straight forward. It has no infantry based ranged threat; I really wanted to shoehorn in some incindiarii but it just didn't work. The mammy hopefully provides what I need. Krea + Defenders Ward if necessary can really keep that dude around a long time.

If mammy doesn't work out I'd probably switch in Molik Karn, a gladiator, and a two point solo.

The final list I have for today is an update on my Xerxis list. I shouldn't really say 'my' as there are tons of variations of basically the same list, but I have a few things in mine that I really like.
Tyrant Xerxis - WB: +5
-    Tiberion - PC: 11
-    Basilisk Krea - PC: 4
Tyrant Zaadesh - PC: 3
-    Titan Gladiator - PC: 8
-    Reptile Hound - PC: 2
Mortitheurge Willbreaker - PC: 2
Paingiver Beast Handlers - Leader & 3 Grunts: 2
Cataphract Cetrati - Leader & 5 Grunts: 11
Cataphract Incindiarii - Leader &; 5 Grunts: 9
Nihilators - Leader & 9 Grunts: 8
Swamp Gobbers Bellows Crew - Leader & 1 Grunt: 1
Tyrant Commander & Standard Bearer - Tyrant and Standard: 3
The main variation I have on this list from what I've used before is Zaadesh. I am really pumped to try to get this guy to work. I think he will, it'll just take a bit of time to figure him out. Pairing a really important beast like the gladiator with him makes him a huge target, but he can pawn off one shot on a beast and then put a hit on Tiberion as well with shield guard. Zaadesh wants to get his beasts forward so they can use the gang bonus; with the +2 mat and +2 str his beasts are hitting super hard. The willbreaker provides the extra control radius so they can be forced outside of his measly 8".

The rest is pretty bog standard except for the TyCom. Xerxis can already Press Forward (2" extra movement on a full advance) one unit, so I hope to provide more speed for another unit with TyCom. You'll notice no bronzeback :( I felt really bad once I noticed that. I just didn't have a place for him at this time. pMorghoul, eHexeris, and 3Makeda all love him so he'll be on the board soon.

I've really fallen in love with incindiarii and Xerxis. He provides Martial Discipline in his command range so they can just shoot through each other and other warrior models. Amazing.

The one thing most dudes have to think about with Skorne is where to put Aptimus Marketh. He's a Warlock attachment that allows you to cast free spells and upkeep stuff. Xerxis has two upkeep spells and only five fury, but he doesn't really use his fury much until late game. I do like cycling Fury between two units, though. Makeda has two different upkeep spells so being able to upkeep spells for her for free with souls is nice. You can also cycle spells like Savagery or even Muzzle a warbeast to save Makeda.

Mordikaar would like to use Marketh to upkeep spells like Hollow, Banishing Ward, or cycle Ghost Walk onto dudes so they can move around twice in a turn. As much as I'd like to Ghost Walk more than one unit / model I have to say pMakeda wins it in this 'trio'. She wants to upkeep two spells a turn and probably cast Carnage, so she's only camping one. Add to that the ability to cycle Savagery and it is just a great placement in my opinion.

Adepticon and Privateer Press / Warmachine / Hordes

AdeptiCon has largely been a 40k convention for a long time. I'm really happy to see the support coming not only from PP and WMH, but also Fantasy, Infinity, X-Wing, and numerous other smaller games. More people being exposed to more games is always a good thing.

I didn't actually get much time in the WMH room =/. I was signed up for Iron Gauntlet on Friday but chose to go to the PP store instead. How amazing is that the company released brand new models that everyone wanted way early?

This game constantly amazes me. I've been playing Skorne and only Skorne since November 2012 and I have no inkling to try another faction right now. I feel like my faction could be top dog if played right. There is no other game out right now that I feel like that. We constantly get new GOOD releases and all the factions get the same caliber of releases. Perhaps it is because we don't get a re-do of the faction all at once but it never feels like you're playing in an uphill battle for 3-4 years. It is also possible that all the playtesting they do actually helps.

One takeaway from Adepticon: alternate the IG / Masters on Thursday and Friday. It kinda sucked that all my bros were playing in the Masters on Thursday but I had to play in an all day Fantasy event. I really enjoyed it, but I would have liked to try a Masters qualifier on Friday. Perhaps next year I'll just do a 1,000 point fantasy thing.

Stay tuned for more Skorne chat in the next few weeks. I plan to really focus hard on competitive Skorne this summer. Also keep your eyes peeled for a token review...

1 comment:

  1. I know this is a bit old by now. Under current errata the Shaman is unable to use character animi. So it would be unable to use the Despoilers animi.