Bummer Bowl 3

Bummer Bowl 3

It’s that time again. Time to lose some games in the cold weather. So what better way to do so than to host the third annual Warmachine and Hordes Bummer Bowl? But before I get into that, the non-bummer is that I finished a ton of painting. Still going strong with all the Minions.

minions calaban the gravewalker

First up, I finished Calaban, the Grave Walker, for the Bummer Bowl itself. Part of playing in the Bummer Bowl means bringing a less good warcaster or warlock, so Calaban fit that bill well. He was fun to paint, and I like the way the mask really ties the red color scheme together. 

minions sacral vault

Next up, I finished a Sacral Vault. This was a beast of a model to get done, but I’m really pleased with how it looks overall. Definitely an army centerpiece kind of model. 

minions max gatorman posse 2

Not content there, I also painted up a maximum unit of Gatormen Posse. This brings me to a fully painted 75 points list for my Maelok force, which alone makes me very happy to have completed.

minions bog trog mist speaker

Not to be outdone I also got some pieces done for my Jaga-Jaga list as well… a Bog Trog Mist Speaker being the first of them. Though honestly he’s for many lists, as one of the most ubiquitous of Minions pieces. 

minions ironback spitter

And last but not least: an Ironback Spitter. I managed to get him shaped up and finished. Was unsure about making him red but matching the shell to the more prominent ridge on my gators, but I think it turned out really nicely. 

That’s more than enough painting for now (well, not really as I’m painting like crazy to get things into a semblance of order for the tournament this coming weekend. What’s more exciting than painting, though, is the official return of the Bummer Bowl.

The bummer bowl began in 2016, when Steve, Ryan, Brad, and I tried to head down to a tournament in Charleston, WV, on a snowy winter morning. We had a series of poor happenstance occur that left us entirely unable to go. So instead we hung around Ryan’s place and played what we called “the Bummer Bowl” (owing to the series of complications). We decided to flip the story of a usual tournament: instead, the people who lose each round continue on toward the championship*. Thus, the person who had the worst time of the day won* the prize*. And what a glorious prize it was: we wrote the words “Bummer Bowl” on a plastic spoon we found in the trash.

bummer bowl 3 round one

Enough about the past, on to this year’s Bummer Bowl. First round was Mike’s Cygnar, using Maddox, facing Ryan’s Skorne, using Makeda1, and my Minions Calaban clashed with Steve’s Retribution Thyron. The battle lines were drawn, and the war to see who was least bad began–as no one wants the shame of the Bummer Bowl trophy after all.

My first game was pretty effective, with Calaban proving to be a slow Warlock but a fairly effective one. I managed to harass Steve’s stuff enough to build a strong position–it got me the scenario lead and then he clocked out. Bummer! That meant I knew I was spared from being the Bummer Bowl 3 champion this time. Phew! Second round I played just a fun winner’s bracket game against Mike, who had triumphed narrowly in his first game. His Maddox list faced some serious hitting power with Calaban, and I managed to win via assassination.

bummer bowl 3 victor

Steve, the Retribution player, managed to win* the championship yet again (3rd time in a row, even). This time, Enrico Nardini at Drawbridge Games was generous, and he bought and helped construct a championship belt for the event. Note that we incorporated the “used spoon from the trash” plan, and made sure the belt held all three plastic trash spoons.

Overall the Bummer Bowl 3 was a great time. We’ll be planning a Bummer Bowl 4 soon enough. It’s always a great time, and a fun chance to play the game for laughs rather than more hardcore competition. Speaking of hardcore competition, my next post will likely cover my time at the ATC. So stay tuned for that fun!

365 Points Challenge Progress (2019):

99/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2019: 6 (Win/Loss 6/0); 2018: 129 (Win/Loss 78/51); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

6 Wins (Nemo1 x2, Irusk2, Helynna, Maddox, Thyron) / 0 Losses (___)

New Year: New Models

New Year: New Models

Well, it’s a new year so a fresh blog. Back to 0 models painted and a 0/0 Win/Loss record. I’m starting the year reasonably committed to the Minions plan, and I’ve made some pretty strong strides with them in comfort and composition.

Another big thing this year is that I’m endeavoring to play fully painted. That means minimum progress on anything that I’m fielding, tho ideally fully completed forces. In keeping with that, I’ve joined the Brush Wielders Union: an organization that is designed to promote some specific hobby-focused values that I found to be quite compelling.

brush wielders pledge

So given that, here’s all the stuff that I completed. I’m still putting the bases on one final unit of Gatormen Posse, so the games were painted enough but not completely done. Once I finish those bases I’ll have my entire Maelok army fully painted to 75 points. Pretty exciting!

minions bone shrine

One of my favorites was this Bone Shrine. It’s simple, but I really like it. I think it bodes well for how the Sacral Vault will turn out in my paint scheme (coming soon). 

minions totem hunter

The Totem Hunter, which I did in the style that I’ll be using for my Thrullgs and my Bog Trogs: red skin, with a dull copper and metal armor and some bone pieces. Pretty pleased with him. 

minions kwaak and gub

Another solo: Kwaak & Gub. I love this guy, and the little frog emerging from his belly to cast spells to is just adorable. 

minions minimum gatorman posse 3

I’ve been trying to get the mix right on Maelok, and I settled on two max Posse and three min Posse. That gives me 19 Gatorman bodies, and the points work out for three solos. Having finished this unit (the purple unit), I have just one maximum Posse unit to go. 

minions blackhide wrastler 2

A second Blackhide Wrastler, finished up. I swapped around the colors of his facemask from the other one, but otherwise they’re really similar. Makes for a good pair. 

In addition to a heap of painting to start the new year, I also got in a few games.

(Clockwise from top left) All four games I used Maelok, as he’s my painted list currently. So he’s what I’m running. And spoiler alert: all four games were wins by scenario, which is exactly what Maelok wants to be doing. I faced Andy’s Irusk2 list, which was a serious grind. I got up on points because of the scenario, able to clear my own rectangle zone and the left circle zone enough times to win. Second game was against Steve’s Helynna double colossal list. Again, a scenario win thanks to terrain and jamming with Gatormen. They really can be frightening if you’ve got a live scenario. Third and fourth games were against Mike’s Nemo1 Cygnar list. They took place a week apart, and he made some changes from the list after the first game. First time I managed to kill a junior warcaster, which left him short on the left side and enabled a scenario win. Second game I had to be careful as his list had more heavy hitters, but I got lucky in collapsing the right side this time. Nemo1 had to try an assassination with spells that came up short, and I scored the rest of what I needed to win. They were a good set of games to get me more comfortable with unpacking my force and thinking about when Feat is best used. 

I don’t think there’s a need for the Warlock tracker any longer, as I’ve gotten to the point where I have enough reps with the front-runners to be comfortable with them. Back to just the basic points-painted and wins/losses record from before I started down the Minions path.

365 Points Challenge Progress (2019):

38/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2019: 4 (Win/Loss 4/0); 2018: 129 (Win/Loss 78/51); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

4 Wins (Nemo1 x2, Irusk2, Helynna) / 0 Losses (___)

Snake Charmer

Snake Charmer

Given my experience with the test weekend against the Mollywhoppers, I decided to settle in on giving Jaga-Jaga some serious consideration as a pair to Maelok. That meant a bunch of games in rapid succession, but also ample amounts of painting. First as always, the painting:

1 Longchops Minions

First up, Longchops and his little Kingfisher bird buddy. I’m really pleased with how he turned out, and especially with the little bird. Hah. 

2 Minions Gatorman Soul Slave

Gatorman Soul Slave was another fun model to do up. It may be my favorite Privateer Press model in a funny way. This image doesn’t show it, but the way he is bound up and decorated is just really intriguing as a notion: the unwilling warlock attachment. 

3 Gatorman Husk 2nd

I did up a second Gatorman Husk as well, as I’ve toyed with the idea of running two of them with Maelok (likely to settle on just one, sadly). Definitely enjoy this model as a model, and it’s fun but inconsistent in the game. 

4 Minons Gatorman Witch Doctor

Last but not least, a Gatorman Witch Doctor. They’re a bit skinny compared to the other Gatorman models, and doesn’t have quite the facial character of the others. I’m pleased with how it turned out though. 

As for games, I knew that I needed to give Jaga-Jaga a much more thorough testing. So I got in a whole heap of games!

 

(Clockwise left to right) I played two games over a two day stretch against Larry, fielding Makeda3 (a brief break from Circle to dip into Skorne). In both games I took Jaga-Jaga, which doesn’t have exactly the greatest match-up against Madeka3’s high defense and armor. In the first game, I had to go for the kill after Molik Kharn took out my Wrestler due to poor placement on my part. I managed to use the Cauldron to get her away from shield guards, and then managed to survive a Kharn free strike with the turtle after a bit more shooting (and an Oil hit). Brought her down to just a couple of boxes, and she died to fire the start of her turn. Second game again it hinged around a Molik Kharn missile, which this time my warlock managed to survive thanks to absurdly crummy dice on my opponent’s part. Next I played Jaga-Jaga into Larry IV’s Ossrum list. It was a monumental grind-fest, but the Sacral Vault really shined. It took out so many foes, from hammer dwarves to Kayazy Assassins. Gets so much work done against living infantry. Wow. I won on scenario 7-2 at the bottom of turn 6. 

 

(Clockwise Left to Right) Another three games, all with Jaga-Jaga. First up was a pair of games against Ryan, trying out a Kromac2 beast brick list. We split them, both times on assassination. Jaga died the first time to an unexpected path werewolf, and managed to live through an assault the next game and answer with a kill of Kromac2 herself. Third game was against Steve’s Retribution list. It was Helynna with double colossals, and a very tough match for Jaga-Jaga because her shooting was very limited in destructive power. I managed to win on time and scenario advantage. I’m reminded how envious I am of Retribution’s pieces every time I face it. 

 

(Left to Right) I forgot to take a photo of the first game of this set, Jaga-Jaga into Larry’s Iona list. It was a brutal match, I lost far too much early and simply had no answers to what I was facing and simply lost on scenario. Second game was a brief interlude of Maelok, again into Larry’s Iona. It was a scenario loss for me as well. I need to do much better at spacing my Gatormen Posse members. Final game of this series was Jaga-Jaga into Justin’s Barnabas2 Minions list. It was a win for me, though much of it was that it was his first time using the lesser warlocks. Jaga-Jaga ended up with enough shooting to take even Barnabas2 out of action.

Overall it’s a start to seeing what Jaga-Jaga can do. I’m pleased to start delving into her more deeply as a warlock. Looking at my chart (below), she is now the Warlock that I’ve had the most reps with–and I’m feeling reasonably competent about much of her game. Now to work on spacing the Croak Raiders just so to get the most out of them without losing them all.

Primary Warlocks Games Secondary Warlocks Games
Maelok 7 Barnabas1 6
Jaga-Jaga 10 Dr. Arkadius 3
Rask 7 Midas 2
Barnabas2 1

365 Points Challenge Progress (2018):

404/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2018: 129 (Win/Loss 78/51); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

20 Wins (Vlad1, Issyria, Kromac2 x2, Maddox x2, Magnus2, Kryssa, Helynna x2, Irusk2, Amon, Feora3 x2, Siege2, Vlad2, Ossrum, Makeda3 x2, Barnabas2) / 16 Losses (Venethrax, Ossrum, Syvestro, Madrak3, Krueger2 x2, Iona x6, Rahn, High Reclaimer, Terminus, Kromac2)

Convergence of Cyriss:

3 Wins (Haley3, Vlad1, Caine2) / 11 Losses (Heretic, Rask, Kaelyssa, Xerxis, Siege2, Testament, Bradigus, Vyros2, Ossrum, Stryker2, Vlad2)

Legion of Everblight:

38 Wins (Denny1 x2, Scaverous x2, Issyria, Wanderer, Skarre1, Sloan, Naaresh, Gaspy2, Madrak1 x2, Strakov2, Kaya3 x2, Helynna x3, Sorscha2, Kaelyssa, Dreamer, Jaga-Jaga, Denny3, Elara2 x2, Thexus, Sorscha1, Maelok x3, Heretic, Strakov1, Borka2, Caine2, Karchev, Baldur2, Gaspy3, Gaspy1) / 18 Losses (Denny1, Krueger2, Dreamer, Sorscha1, Jaga-Jaga, Old Witch3, Caine1, Issyria, Child, Helynna, Gaspy3 x2, Karchev, Vlad1, Barnabas, Heretic x2, Madrak1)

Skorne:

10 Wins (Anamag, Sorscha3, Kolgrima, Gaspy2, Feora1, High Reclaimer, Vlad1 x2, Haley2, Skarre3) / 5 Losses (Rahn, Magnus1, Denny1, Haley2, Syvestro)

Protectorate of Menoth:

8 Wins (Gaspy2, Helynna, Vlad2, Sorscha1, Vlad1, Kraye, Garryth, Naaresh) / 1 Loss (Madrak1)

All Fall Down

All Fall Down

Like I said last time, I wanted to do some Barnabas1 testing. I think he and Rask are the two potential choices to pair with my Maelok list. I really like the way his Feat helps handle a variety of infantry forces, and his Swamp Pit spell remains pretty nasty against gunline armies. While Rask protects on the advance as well, after Rask’s Feat turn and alpha there isn’t as much play left in him. It’s one of those “you better have such a clear winning situation on turn 3” kind of lists. I think Barnabas1 sacrifices some of the force protection Rask gives, and instead permits longer term force protection for some of his pieces. And then there’s always the dark horse of Jaga-Jaga, which means that Maelok would need to be the one to power thru gunlines–but she could give some destructive power on both cracking armor and killing swaths of infantry that both Maelok and Barnabas1 lack.

My team for the America’s Team Championship in January has arranged a practice event this month against five other Teams from Pennsylvania and Maryland. Like I will for the ATC, I prepared a match-up sheet for this one. Good lord so many Circle players (8 of the 30 are Circle), but was pleased to see that Minions ties for second-most-represented with Cryx. I’m feeling a little iffy on my match-ups, so you’ll see a lot of yellow squares. But this is what the breakdown looks like with Maelok and Barnabas1 as my committed choices.

5 Player Team Tournament Match Up Sheet Example

Out of the 25 potential opponents, I’m seeing only two that don’t have a clear choice for me to make (I think). That helps a lot with my decision-making. And I only have two where I’m feeling like it’s really list chicken. It’s also about 65% Maelok as a choice, so that helps too: the list I’m feeling is my main list is the one I’ll be playing more.

Proviso: I might be totally wrong on these match ups, and my team helped me on some of them (especially the Circle ones). But it’s a good experiment to go thru and think about how I’d do these with my given lists. That in itself gives feedback on Barnabas1 and my current build of him.

In advance of the practice event, I got in some more painting and practice games of my own to be ready (practicing for practice, hah). First up painting:

1 Minions Blind Walker

Finished a Blind Walker. I really like this warmest for Maelok, both aesthetically and in the game. Being able to arc Mortality is a huge boon for him. I think he turned out great. 

1 Minions Thrullg

Maelok’s list also has a Thrullg, which was a good way to paint something slightly different. I’m planning on doing my Bog Trogs in this red, to compliment the way that the Gators are brown and the frogs will be brown and orange. The Thrullg has that sorta trog “feel” to it, minus scales, so I gave it a whirl. Really liked how it turned out. Will bring out the reds that are more rare on the rest of my stuff really well. 

Like I said above, I got in a few practice games in the week before the practice event:

(Clockwise left to right) First up, a Barnabas1 loss to Larry’s Iona. That caster is a meta-bender to be sure, and I still haven’t solved it–though I got closer this time than I have in the past. Next up I got a pop-and-drop assassination win against Chad’s Feora3. Being able to walk out of jam after the Feat enabled me to get pieces to clear a path and then a wrastler onto a knocked-down Feora. Finally, I snuck in a game with Barnabas2 against Mike’s Cygnar with Maddox. It was a sort of a palate-cleanser game, as I just wanted to try something different quick–and had just assembled Barnabas2 (who is such a cool model). I won the game, tho I expect the next time I use him against Mike he’ll do much better. I fear Barnabas2 may be a one trick pony. 

The practice event itself was a lot of fun. It was organized by the Mollywhoppers, and we ended up facing both of their teams (Baltimore area) as well as another group from New Jersey (Team Meat).

(Clockwise left to right) First I faced Chris, from Mollywhoppers Lincoln. He dropped High Reclaimer with double Judicators, and I dropped Barnabas1. It was a tough game, and I managed to take out one of the two Judicators, but it still wasn’t enough and he killed Barnabas. Our team went 2-3 this round, but we also didn’t get the exact match-ups pairings that we were looking for. Second round I played Maelok into Anthony’s Vlad2 Armored Corps. I had Barnabas1 as my drop for this one, but I re-thought it because it was a relatively small AC list (few units). I managed to win on scenario by killing enough to score and denying him scores on his turns thanks to effectively sturdy gators. Our team went 5-0 this round, as we got the match-ups we were generally looking for (mine was probably the roughest). Final round was against the Mollywhoppers Booth, and I took Barnabas1 into Brad Park’s Terminus Ghost Fleet. I definitely adjusted my sense of the match-up on the advice of my team captain, Rob, but I still felt it wasn’t as bad as he suggested it was. I managed to get an assassination run that left Terminus with only three boxes, after it was clear I was on the losing end of the attrition game. So a loss, but not as problematic as it could have been. Definitely felt the limitations of Barnabas1 across this one and the HR match up in round one. 

Overall, I fear that my Barnabas1 list is more reactive: that it’s me responding to others’ threats and hoping to answer them. I asked Brad after our game what he’d fear to see from a Minions list, and he said that Jaga-Jaga is a straight up red match for many Cryx lists, and we talked through reasons why that might be good. Left me feeling better about my performance and the weekend. I’m thinking that maybe with Jaga-Jaga I can move to where I’ve got more green match ups, and it’ll just mean that a few match ups are clearly red (otherwise known as “play Maelok and count on the armor plus scenario”).

Primary Warlocks Games Secondary Warlocks Games
Maelok 6 Barnabas1 6
Jaga-Jaga 2 Dr. Arkadius 3
Rask 7 Midas 2
Barnabas2 1

365 Points Challenge Progress (2018):

391/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2018: 120 (Win/Loss 72/48); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

14 Wins (Vlad1, Issyria, Kromac2, Maddox x2, Magnus2, Kryssa, Helynna, Irusk2, Amon, Feora3 x2, Siege2, Vlad2) / 13 Losses (Venethrax, Ossrum, Syvestro, Madrak3, Krueger2 x2, Iona x4, Rahn, High Reclaimer, Terminus)

Convergence of Cyriss:

3 Wins (Haley3, Vlad1, Caine2) / 11 Losses (Heretic, Rask, Kaelyssa, Xerxis, Siege2, Testament, Bradigus, Vyros2, Ossrum, Stryker2, Vlad2)

Legion of Everblight:

38 Wins (Denny1 x2, Scaverous x2, Issyria, Wanderer, Skarre1, Sloan, Naaresh, Gaspy2, Madrak1 x2, Strakov2, Kaya3 x2, Helynna x3, Sorscha2, Kaelyssa, Dreamer, Jaga-Jaga, Denny3, Elara2 x2, Thexus, Sorscha1, Maelok x3, Heretic, Strakov1, Borka2, Caine2, Karchev, Baldur2, Gaspy3, Gaspy1) / 18 Losses (Denny1, Krueger2, Dreamer, Sorscha1, Jaga-Jaga, Old Witch3, Caine1, Issyria, Child, Helynna, Gaspy3 x2, Karchev, Vlad1, Barnabas, Heretic x2, Madrak1)

Skorne:

10 Wins (Anamag, Sorscha3, Kolgrima, Gaspy2, Feora1, High Reclaimer, Vlad1 x2, Haley2, Skarre3) / 5 Losses (Rahn, Magnus1, Denny1, Haley2, Syvestro)

Protectorate of Menoth:

8 Wins (Gaspy2, Helynna, Vlad2, Sorscha1, Vlad1, Kraye, Garryth, Naaresh) / 1 Loss (Madrak1)

Maelok and Rask-terisk

Maelok and Rask-terisk

Well, I’m close to settled on my Minions pairing to do a deep dive with in practice. I’ll put an asterisk on one warlock, as I still have a few ideas I want to test with Jaga-Jaga and Barnabas1 and could maybe, maybe still move to Dr. Arkadius. The Jaga-Jaga idea probably more cute than good, but still want to check it out (need to assemble a few more models for it). And Arkadius is great, but pulling up those relatively poopy Farrow warbeasts is a chore.

So for right now it looks like Maelok and Rask* will be my Warlocks that I’ll seek depth of practice with. But first up, more painting:

Hordes Minions Gatormen Posse Minimum Posse Maelok List

Finished up the first two of my many minimum Gatorman Posse units. Two more minimum units to go, but I’m going to change up some of the bits I’m painting before tackling the next set. There are markings on the back of each of the units to keep them separate–and those correspond to the feather colors of their leaders. 

I at least got a number of chances to test varieties of a Rask list once I started to get games in.

(Clockwise from Left) Started a mini Rask-a-thon with a game against Siege2, piloted by Mike. Was a good game, and I felt that I had some answers to the trenchers and traded well as I went with the game. Won by assassination after Siege had to get much more personally involved in the battle. Second game was against Chad’s Feora3. I didn’t feel like I played this one particularly well, sorta fumbled more than a few things. But I managed to clear his battlegroup pretty effectively, to the point scenario became a smooth win. Was fun, and staying safe from Feora3 was a huge part of the challenge. Final game of the set was against Steve’s Rahn. I was ahead on scenario, but as always: where there’s a Rahn, there’s a way. A personal charge to clear Orrin Midwinter, then some careful chain blasts to free up the TK lanes, and Rask was dead. Yikes. Even after dispatching both arc nodes early and effectively, you still need to play it super-conservative. 

(Left to Right). I wanted to give Jaga-Jaga at least one more go, but I definitely don’t think Larry’s Iona list was a good test. It punched my ticket pretty well, top-to-bottom (was a clear attrition loss about to get ugly). We did a rematch because that game was pretty quick: this time Maelok took the field. Better, but still abysmal. Iona is a serious, serious list and I need to think more about how to face her. 

So far so good-ish with Rask, as I’ve played him more than any other warlock in the faction. 21 games in to Minions and still liking their overall options and play, which alone is a win. Gonna do a bit of Barnabas1 testing, and then settle (finally) on a pairing.

Primary Warlocks Games Secondary Warlocks Games
Rask 7 Barnabas1 2
Maelok 5 Jaga-Jaga 2
Dr. Arkadius 3 Midas 2

365 Points Challenge Progress (2018):

376/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2018: 114 (Win/Loss 69/45); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

11 Wins (Vlad1, Issyria, Kromac2, Maddox, Magnus2, Kryssa, Helynna, Irusk2, Amon, Feora3, Siege2) / 10 Losses (Venethrax, Ossrum, Syvestro, Madrak3, Krueger2 x2, Iona x3, Rahn)

Convergence of Cyriss:

3 Wins (Haley3, Vlad1, Caine2) / 11 Losses (Heretic, Rask, Kaelyssa, Xerxis, Siege2, Testament, Bradigus, Vyros2, Ossrum, Stryker2, Vlad2)

Legion of Everblight:

38 Wins (Denny1 x2, Scaverous x2, Issyria, Wanderer, Skarre1, Sloan, Naaresh, Gaspy2, Madrak1 x2, Strakov2, Kaya3 x2, Helynna x3, Sorscha2, Kaelyssa, Dreamer, Jaga-Jaga, Denny3, Elara2 x2, Thexus, Sorscha1, Maelok x3, Heretic, Strakov1, Borka2, Caine2, Karchev, Baldur2, Gaspy3, Gaspy1) / 18 Losses (Denny1, Krueger2, Dreamer, Sorscha1, Jaga-Jaga, Old Witch3, Caine1, Issyria, Child, Helynna, Gaspy3 x2, Karchev, Vlad1, Barnabas, Heretic x2, Madrak1)

Skorne:

10 Wins (Anamag, Sorscha3, Kolgrima, Gaspy2, Feora1, High Reclaimer, Vlad1 x2, Haley2, Skarre3) / 5 Losses (Rahn, Magnus1, Denny1, Haley2, Syvestro)

Protectorate of Menoth:

8 Wins (Gaspy2, Helynna, Vlad2, Sorscha1, Vlad1, Kraye, Garryth, Naaresh) / 1 Loss (Madrak1)

Gators and Pigs

Gators and Pigs

I got in a bunch more games, to keep trying out various Warlocks in preparation for some team tournaments I’m attending in early Spring. But first, painting: I completed my first full Gatorman Posse unit.

Minions Gatorman Posse

I’m still pleased with the look of these models. There’s more work in getting the scales just-so than I thought, but it’s worth it. I’m pretty pleased with the results so far. 

For games, I’m still tracking my different Warlock experiences to kind of get a sense for how deep I’m going in the faction. After this set, I’m at six different warlocks at least hitting the table–but certainly some more than others.

(Clockwise from Left) First up, I played Maelok into Cornelius’ Kryssa list in Legion. Thanks to the pressure that the Gatorman Husks put on his list, I was able to get far too sizeable a lead early on for him to catch up in a meaningful way. Second, it was Maelok again–this time into Steve’s Helynna list. I didn’t crack much armor (especially on Feat), but the scenario pressure was enough to get my the win. Opponents really seem to need to adjust their game plan against Maelok–avoiding the scenario getting out-of-hand seems critical. Third game was my first outing for Dr. Arkadius. I faced Jonas’s Irusk2 Khador list in the Winterguard theme. Arkadius’ threat ranges and silly feat are something I’m going to need a lot of practice with, but I won this game largely due to Jonas being a relatively new player. I’m sure soon enough that Irusk2 list will be causing fits for my force. 

(Clockwise from Left) More Dr. Arkadius games! I faced Ben’s Protectorate running an odd Amon list (two units of Idrians rather than all battlegroup). After my alpha strike, he killed four of my five heavies, which made me have to go for an assassination with the fifth. I managed to do so, which was good. It was a game marked by poor plays be me–need to sort out all the bits of the Doc’s technicalities (while also thinking about opponents’ abilities). Next I got in a game against Ryan’s Madrak3 list with my Arkadius force. This list was a real solid one, and while I did a good job clearing the infantry the durability of what was left was a real struggle to get thru. We were tied on control points at the end of 7 turns (8 each!), and it came down to army points destroyed where he hedged me out by 7 points. What a close game! Finally I played Rask into Larry’s Krueger2 in Bones. Was a pretty fierce game, and I expect that if I had gone first it would have come down differently. It was a clear loss on scenario for me. 

(Again, clockwise from Left) My final two games to report on were both against Larry and his Circle forces. First against Krueger2 again, then against Iona–the new warlock. I dropped a Barnabas1 list that I wanted to at least try out in both lists. I learned a few things. First, I’m unsold on Underchief Mire, the Minions lesser. Free animus distribution is good, but keeping him safe and keeping the warbeast relevant gets much harder to manage. Second, while I like Will Work for Food, I don’t know if Barnabas brings exactly what I need. I’m thinking that Rask is where I want to spend a bit more of my time and thought (though I did have a Jaga-Jaga in WWFF flash of insight that I’m going to at least try). 

Overall a great set of games, and definitely feeling like each one I play I’m learning more and more about the faction’s strengths and weaknesses. I definitely am feeling more connected to this faction than others I’ve played. Not sure why. But yeah, I think this is a groove that will last a while.

Primary Warlocks Games Secondary Warlocks Games
Maelok 4 Midas 2
Rask 4 Jaga-Jaga 1
Dr. Arkadius 3 Barnabas1 2

365 Points Challenge Progress (2018):

356/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2018: 109 (Win/Loss 67/42); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

9 Wins (Vlad1, Issyria, Kromac2, Maddox, Magnus2, Kryssa, Helynna, Irusk2, Amon) / 7 Losses (Venethrax, Ossrum, Syvestro, Madrak3, Krueger2 x2, Iona)

Convergence of Cyriss:

3 Wins (Haley3, Vlad1, Caine2) / 11 Losses (Heretic, Rask, Kaelyssa, Xerxis, Siege2, Testament, Bradigus, Vyros2, Ossrum, Stryker2, Vlad2)

Legion of Everblight:

38 Wins (Denny1 x2, Scaverous x2, Issyria, Wanderer, Skarre1, Sloan, Naaresh, Gaspy2, Madrak1 x2, Strakov2, Kaya3 x2, Helynna x3, Sorscha2, Kaelyssa, Dreamer, Jaga-Jaga, Denny3, Elara2 x2, Thexus, Sorscha1, Maelok x3, Heretic, Strakov1, Borka2, Caine2, Karchev, Baldur2, Gaspy3, Gaspy1) / 18 Losses (Denny1, Krueger2, Dreamer, Sorscha1, Jaga-Jaga, Old Witch3, Caine1, Issyria, Child, Helynna, Gaspy3 x2, Karchev, Vlad1, Barnabas, Heretic x2, Madrak1)

Skorne:

10 Wins (Anamag, Sorscha3, Kolgrima, Gaspy2, Feora1, High Reclaimer, Vlad1 x2, Haley2, Skarre3) / 5 Losses (Rahn, Magnus1, Denny1, Haley2, Syvestro)

Protectorate of Menoth:

8 Wins (Gaspy2, Helynna, Vlad2, Sorscha1, Vlad1, Kraye, Garryth, Naaresh) / 1 Loss (Madrak1)

Blindingly Blindwater

Blindingly Blindwater

Progress continues on my Blindwater side of my Minions project, both in painting and list creation. I’m fiddling with three different Warlocks to begin my serious inquiry into the faction: Jaga-Jaga, Maelok, and Rask. I think each of them bring some solid tools and effective play styles for me to work with.

On the painting side, I am working toward a fully-painted core of a force, and exploring the various types of model that I’ll be fielding. To that end, here’s some progress:

Minions Maelok the Dreadbound

Maelok the Dreadbound is the first Minions warlock that I’ve finished. He was an intimidating model to paint, as there’s a lot going on with him. But I think it turned out really nicely–special bonus Mr. Meeseeks voodoo doll in his pouch to torment any Trollbloods with. 

Minions Blackhide Wrastler

This Blackhide Wrastler shows a lot of what the faction will be looking like from an alligators side. Red cords, two-tone skin “top” and “bottom”, slight trend toward yellow on the more prominent spikes and scales. I’m really pleased with this one!

Hordes Minions Boneswarm

The Boneswarm was honestly pretty easy. My technique for painting bone is quick enough, so he went fast. Maybe I should play some Barnabas2 just because I could get his kit painted faster than most everything else!

Bullsnapper Minions

The Bullsnapper painted up pretty easy as well. He doesn’t have quite as many sharp scales, so is a more simple thing with a bit less yellow along the top (it’s very fait, just on his head and tips of the darker spine scales). 

Despite focusing my painting efforts on Maelok first, I started experimenting with Rask and Jaga-Jaga as well in my first two games. But quickly broke out Maelok as well.

(Clockwise from left). First took Jaga-Jaga vs Savage’s Kromac2. Managed to survive two rounds of assassination attempts due to mostly luck and some positioning mistakes, won on scenario after that. The new Circle Thunderbird is a scary piece to face! Then took on Steve’s Issyria with a “Neomodern Rask” list (all credit to Matter of Pact Minions Podcast for coming up with the list). Managed to win on scenario with this one as well. Finally dropped Maelok into Larry’s Ossrum list. He forfeited near the end of the game due to needing to run to an appointment, but it was going to be an assassination kill of Maelok unless the dice were exceptionally poor–so I’m going to count this one as a loss. 

 

(Again, clockwise from left) Fielded Maelok vs Mike’s Cygnar and Major Beth Maddox. Was a good learning game, and while Maddox got a shot to assassinate Maelok she came up a bit short and he was able to finish her off personally. Next took Rask vs. Larry IV’s Mercenaries Magnus2 list. Managed to stave off scenario pressure with some key placements and ambushing husks, which let me get to the point where I was able to assassinate Magnus2. Finally took Rask into Syvestro, which taught me that I definitely need more practice into Crucible Guard and more experience playing into infantry swarms with these lists. Was a solid scenario loss for me. 

 

As I was doing with Skorne, I am going to sorta do with Minions as well. I’m going to track number of games I get in with my chosen focus warlocks leading up to the America’s Team Championship (ATC) and Ontario Team Championship (OTC) coming up at the start of the year. Hoping to hold myself to 30 games played of each of the two warlocks that I end up bringing to those events.

Primary Warlocks Games Secondary Warlocks Games
Maelok 2 Midas 2
Rask 3
Jaga-Jaga 1

365 Points Challenge Progress (2018):

340/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2018: 101 (Win/Loss 63/38); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

5 Wins (Vlad1, Issyria, Kromac2, Maddox, Magnus2) / 3 Losses (Venethrax, Ossrum, Syvestro)

Convergence of Cyriss:

3 Wins (Haley3, Vlad1, Caine2) / 11 Losses (Heretic, Rask, Kaelyssa, Xerxis, Siege2, Testament, Bradigus, Vyros2, Ossrum, Stryker2, Vlad2)

Legion of Everblight:

38 Wins (Denny1 x2, Scaverous x2, Issyria, Wanderer, Skarre1, Sloan, Naaresh, Gaspy2, Madrak1 x2, Strakov2, Kaya3 x2, Helynna x3, Sorscha2, Kaelyssa, Dreamer, Jaga-Jaga, Denny3, Elara2 x2, Thexus, Sorscha1, Maelok x3, Heretic, Strakov1, Borka2, Caine2, Karchev, Baldur2, Gaspy3, Gaspy1) / 18 Losses (Denny1, Krueger2, Dreamer, Sorscha1, Jaga-Jaga, Old Witch3, Caine1, Issyria, Child, Helynna, Gaspy3 x2, Karchev, Vlad1, Barnabas, Heretic x2, Madrak1)

Skorne:

10 Wins (Anamag, Sorscha3, Kolgrima, Gaspy2, Feora1, High Reclaimer, Vlad1 x2, Haley2, Skarre3) / 5 Losses (Rahn, Magnus1, Denny1, Haley2, Syvestro)

Protectorate of Menoth:

8 Wins (Gaspy2, Helynna, Vlad2, Sorscha1, Vlad1, Kraye, Garryth, Naaresh) / 1 Loss (Madrak1)

Shameless Borrowing

Shameless Borrowing

So in the process of looking at Skorne, I assembled a fair number of Minions models to play in the Disciples of Agony theme. And I’ve had even more that have run with my Legion and Trollbloods in the past. And I realized that while the Skorne CID might be underwhelming me (mostly–the change to the Bronzeback is pretty sweet), I had some core components of some Minons lists ready to roll. So I nabbed a few Warlocks (and unpacked a couple old ones that I had stashed away), and thought I’d try my hand at some games with them.

Because this fits within my aim to have ample reps of lists before the ATC in January, that also meant that I don’t have quite the time to tinker with lists. So it’s shameless borrowing time! I did a pretty deep dive into what the effective lists are for Minions out there, and there’s surprising diversity that seems to be working. Going to give some of them a try (roughly).

On the painting side, I’m doing some shameless borrowing as well. This painting guide from Bell of Lost Souls is what I followed roughly for the look of my models. I tend to like Citadel paints for most colors, so I used some color matches. But I’m still pleased with the basic formula of two-tone sandy brown-to-yellow scales, with red cord accents and neutral cloth colors. I did up a Gator first to see how it worked. I’m still experimenting with the Croak solo and the Bog Trog–wanted to get all my colors for the three major types of model in Blindwater lists sorted out.

Minions Gatorman Husk

Despite painting first toward the Blindwater, my first games came with some Farrow. I had more Farrow than anything else from the Skorne DoA project, so it was the first spot that I had an assembled list: Midas with infantry in the Farrow theme. The games are not much to look at because my force is almost completely unpainted (just one Splatter Boar and a Gobber Chef, and the Splatter Boar colors may or may not be what I settle on for the force). But it’s a start to trying them out.

Minions Midas versus Cryx Venethrax

My first game was Midas into Venethrax Black Industries played by Justin. Not only was I on the learning curve with a new warlock, it was a warlock with some limitations–which Venethrax exploited pretty well. Definitely a learning game, but a healthy and solid loss for me. 

Minions Midas vs Khador Vlad1

Second game with Midas went better. Took him into Larry IV’s Vlad1 Winterguard list. Even scattering the Splatter Boar blasts around still took out plenty of Winterguard with corrosion. I found that this list can indeed hit hard and shoot well, but it cannot stand up to firepower particularly well either. Definitely a list to bring into a mostly-melee force. 

So that’s a start to Minions at least. I’m definitely hoping to make progress on the painting side, and have a full slate of Gators to work on. This weekend I should get my first games with Blindwater forces in, which will be a welcome start (as I think my interest is hovering more there than with Midas).

365 Points Challenge Progress (2018):

302/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2018: 95 (Win/Loss 59/36); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

1 Win (Vlad1) / 1 Loss (Venethrax)

Convergence of Cyriss:

3 Wins (Haley3, Vlad1, Caine2) / 11 Losses (Heretic, Rask, Kaelyssa, Xerxis, Siege2, Testament, Bradigus, Vyros2, Ossrum, Stryker2, Vlad2)

Legion of Everblight:

38 Wins (Denny1 x2, Scaverous x2, Issyria, Wanderer, Skarre1, Sloan, Naaresh, Gaspy2, Madrak1 x2, Strakov2, Kaya3 x2, Helynna x3, Sorscha2, Kaelyssa, Dreamer, Jaga-Jaga, Denny3, Elara2 x2, Thexus, Sorscha1, Maelok x3, Heretic, Strakov1, Borka2, Caine2, Karchev, Baldur2, Gaspy3, Gaspy1) / 18 Losses (Denny1, Krueger2, Dreamer, Sorscha1, Jaga-Jaga, Old Witch3, Caine1, Issyria, Child, Helynna, Gaspy3 x2, Karchev, Vlad1, Barnabas, Heretic x2, Madrak1)

Skorne:

10 Wins (Anamag, Sorscha3, Kolgrima, Gaspy2, Feora1, High Reclaimer, Vlad1 x2, Haley2, Skarre3) / 5 Losses (Rahn, Magnus1, Denny1, Haley2, Syvestro)

Protectorate of Menoth:

8 Wins (Gaspy2, Helynna, Vlad2, Sorscha1, Vlad1, Kraye, Garryth, Naaresh) / 1 Loss (Madrak1)

A Calculated Approach

A Calculated Approach

So I attended the Michigan Warmachine Grand Tournament Masters this past weekend, which was a great experience overall. Because it had a painting requirement, I was more limited in my selection of army than I would like to be. I had the most (and most effective) painted models within my Convergence of Cyriss force. So with the completion of a second Transfinite Emergence Projector I was ready to go. You can see the fully painted forces on my tray in the photo above!

Transfinite Emergence Projector Convergence of Cyriss

This Transfinite Emergence Projector (TEP) got my Convergence of Cyriss force to hit two fully-painted lists. I like this paint scheme still a great deal when it’s done, even if it isn’t particularly fun to paint itself in the process. 

Unfortunately, Convergence is not where my game repetitions were located. Which led me to not the best results at the event. I didn’t do terribly, but I also didn’t set the world on fire. Overall I went 1-2, and blame myself and not understanding where my matchup strengths would have been with my lists.

1 Convergence of Cyriss Orion vs Cygnar Stryker 2

First round I faced a Isaiah Thompson, from the Detroit-area meta. He fielded Stryker2 from Cygnar, and I dropped Orion with Prime Axiom. It was probably the wrong choice on my part, and a miscalculation–but I also wanted to see what Orion could do. Answer: not much. The prime had a good kill of Ole’ Rowdy, but other than that the Stormlances were just too much pressure to handle. I still nearly killed Stryker2 after his Feat turn, but the dice didn’t go my way. Honestly tho, there were lots of decision points that could have made it so I didn’t need to rely on dice. A fun opponent but a loss for me. 

2 Convergence of Cyriss Orion vs Khador Vlad2

Second game was against Adam M. from the Buffalo meta. He and I have actually played before in a tourney in Rochester, which was fun. He dropped Vlad2 Armored Corps. I should have dropped Lucant, but again felt like I could learn some with Orion (and was already out of the running with a round one loss). What I learned is that Orion was even worse into this match-up. I managed to keep the game to seven rounds and score enough points to stay in it, but it was just a losing effort the whole way. Orion doesn’t have the oomph to handle heavier armored infantry, and his stuff cannot take the punch either. Was a good game, as he’s a great player and a fun guy to chat with, but again a pretty hefty loss for me. 

3 Convergence of Cyriss Lucant vs Cygnar Caine2

Third game was against Tom Dryfuse, a nice guy from the Flint meta. He dropped Caine2 into my Lucant. It was a tough match-up for him, and while he finally finished off the two TEPs that were causing him serious grief, I managed to get the scenario win by that point. This game was a really good learning game in lots of ways for me–in particular that while Lucant is strong with two TEPs, I fear that my interest in playing a caster who does a lot more–is more dynamic–is what balances my decision to play him sometimes. 

All told it was a good learning experience. I played some good games against fun opponents, and I thought pretty hard about my own lists (even while making some mistakes with them). I emerged from it realizing that I need to select dynamic casters for my pairing, and have a real PAIR to play with–not some feeble strategy of a scary list designed to push other sorts of lists into it. I need to stop building answers and start asking questions to move to the next level. So that’s my goal.

365 Points Challenge Progress (2018):

299/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2018: 93 (Win/Loss 58/35); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Convergence of Cyriss:

3 Wins (Haley3, Vlad1, Caine2) / 11 Losses (Heretic, Rask, Kaelyssa, Xerxis, Siege2, Testament, Bradigus, Vyros2, Ossrum, Stryker2, Vlad2)

Skorne:

10 Wins (Anamag, Sorscha3, Kolgrima, Gaspy2, Feora1, High Reclaimer, Vlad1 x2, Haley2, Skarre3) / 5 Losses (Rahn, Magnus1, Denny1, Haley2, Syvestro)

Legion of Everblight:

38 Wins (Denny1 x2, Scaverous x2, Issyria, Wanderer, Skarre1, Sloan, Naaresh, Gaspy2, Madrak1 x2, Strakov2, Kaya3 x2, Helynna x3, Sorscha2, Kaelyssa, Dreamer, Jaga-Jaga, Denny3, Elara2 x2, Thexus, Sorscha1, Maelok x3, Heretic, Strakov1, Borka2, Caine2, Karchev, Baldur2, Gaspy3, Gaspy1) / 18 Losses (Denny1, Krueger2, Dreamer, Sorscha1, Jaga-Jaga, Old Witch3, Caine1, Issyria, Child, Helynna, Gaspy3 x2, Karchev, Vlad1, Barnabas, Heretic x2, Madrak1)

Protectorate of Menoth:

8 Wins (Gaspy2, Helynna, Vlad2, Sorscha1, Vlad1, Kraye, Garryth, Naaresh) / 1 Loss (Madrak1)

Practice (and Painting) Makes Perfect

Practice (and Painting) Makes Perfect

So I’m prepping for the Michigan GT in mid-October, which requires some practice with lists and also both lists to be fully painted. And while I’m making decent progress on painting my Skorne (see below), I am worried that I won’t have two viable lists. Playing both lists as Immortals seems like it would really limit my options, so it was time to dig out a faction that I haven’t played in quite some time–not since the America’s Team Championship in January: Convergence of Cyriss. I thought I would get in a couple of practice games with them just to knock the rust off, in case I wanted to bring a group with more options (and fewer items I need to complete painting to field).

But first, as always, painting:

1 Skorne Immortals Jade Color Scheme

Finished up a third unit of Skorne Immortals. These have some more special bases, and I’m really pleased with the jade scheme. Turned out quite effective as the scenic bases add that little touch. Going to mix these guys in with my other units to spread out the look (and maybe eventually decor-up some of those bases). 

Skorne Extoller Advocate

Also finished an Extoller Advocate to go with the unit. These guys are neat, and I had fun doing the glowing eye. Picture doesn’t quite have the right focus to show it, but I’m pleased at least. 

1 Convergence Orion vs Khador Vlad1

First game with Convergence was exactly like riding a bicycle. Yes, I had the knack but I was still pretty wobbly. Faced off against Andy’s Khador, led by Vlad1. That makes three different Vlad1 games in about the last five outings. It was a good clash, and I managed to win on scenario with Orion. 

1 Convergence Locke vs Mercenaries Ossrum

Second game was with Locke, taking on Larry’s Ossrum Mercenaries list. Not only is the Ossrum list super-solid, and Larry a great player, but I was tripping all over myself with this warcaster as I played this match. Locke has a deceptive number of moving parts in her playstyle–which will be super fun to unlock, but meant that the first outing was a bit of a disaster. Needless to say I lost this one. 

1 Convergence Axis vs Retribution Vyros2

Third game was with Axis vs Pat’s Vyros2 list. I made a key mistake with one servitor’s positioning, which led to having a bit too much loss on my side. So I had to go for an assassination–that was pretty likely, until my dice decided to be outside the curve. While I ended up losing, it was a fun game, and it definitely showed me the power that Axis can have in scenario play.

I’m still not sure if I’m going to take Convergence or Skorne to the Michigan GT. The lure of playing my new Immortals lists are sure tempting, but they just may not have the depth to be effective for a strongly competitive tournament. That said, I’m definitely still rusty with the Convergence–and that has me questioning taking them to a big tournament as well. Plus they don’t have good answers for one of the boogeymen lists of the meta right now (Primal Terrors)–which doesn’t excite me.

365 Points Challenge Progress (2018):

280/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2018: 90 (Win/Loss 57/33); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Convergence of Cyriss:

2 Wins (Haley3, Vlad1) / 9 Losses (Heretic, Rask, Kaelyssa, Xerxis, Siege2, Testament, Bradigus, Vyros2, Ossrum)

Skorne:

10 Wins (Anamag, Sorscha3, Kolgrima, Gaspy2, Feora1, High Reclaimer, Vlad1 x2, Haley2, Skarre3) / 5 Losses (Rahn, Magnus1, Denny1, Haley2, Syvestro)

Legion of Everblight:

38 Wins (Denny1 x2, Scaverous x2, Issyria, Wanderer, Skarre1, Sloan, Naaresh, Gaspy2, Madrak1 x2, Strakov2, Kaya3 x2, Helynna x3, Sorscha2, Kaelyssa, Dreamer, Jaga-Jaga, Denny3, Elara2 x2, Thexus, Sorscha1, Maelok x3, Heretic, Strakov1, Borka2, Caine2, Karchev, Baldur2, Gaspy3, Gaspy1) / 18 Losses (Denny1, Krueger2, Dreamer, Sorscha1, Jaga-Jaga, Old Witch3, Caine1, Issyria, Child, Helynna, Gaspy3 x2, Karchev, Vlad1, Barnabas, Heretic x2, Madrak1)

Protectorate of Menoth:

8 Wins (Gaspy2, Helynna, Vlad2, Sorscha1, Vlad1, Kraye, Garryth, Naaresh) / 1 Loss (Madrak1)