What did we learn?

Steam-punk fantasy 'skirmish' igra z 28 mm modeli in večjimi roboti / zvermi namesto tankov :)

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Baffo
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What did we learn?

Post by Baffo » Wed Aug 17, 2016 4:11 pm

So, this past weekend we've been at the Austria masters 2016 in Vienna and there we discovered a couple less obvious rules that changed between mk2 and 3:
. Removing a Warbeast from play does not prevent its controller from Reaving the fury on it.

Besides that I had a chance to see a few scary lists on the table:
- Tannith (new circle Battlebox lock) is absolutely murderous with Reeves of Orboros and Sentry stones: the main focus of her combo is in her spell Affliction (Offensive upkeep that lowers Def by 2 and attacks on affected models will always do at least 1 damage), meaning that manikin sprays or reeve's 22 shots per unit can totally obliterate any infantry and severely cripple most jacks.
- Iron Mother (CoC) has a pretty scary gunline as well: I've faced a list with Prime Axiom, 3x Assimilators, Corollary and assorted support and I barely managed to scrape a scenario win due to lucky tough rolls on some key models in my Irusk2 list; the combo is that Iron Mother has Fire group (+2'' of range) and her feat makes her vectors Rat8; the Axiom has 2 autopoint Dragging harpoons, while the assimilators all have Rng 13 (including the range extension from the spell) Pow 13 Ground pounder guns (which means they ignore Line of sight, stealth and concealment); Also keep in mind Mother has her Harm servitors to give her gunline +2 dmg and Attunment servitors for +2 to hit... I believe Erich got the tourney's fastest caster kill (20-ish minutes from start of the round) using this list (he shot dead a caster with no camp hiding behind a forest or building).
- There is a lot of Khador in the European meta atm (5 out of the top 10 spots were Khador and Khador was the most represented faction with 6-7 out f 25 players there); from what I could see Butcher3 seems to still be the most popular Khador caster, Irusk 2 being the second most popular; I believe I was the only player playing Vlad1 (most other people seem to prefer Vlad3 cav lists).

Austrian masters 2016 final standings:
https://www.facebook.com/TemplatesAndWi ... =3&theater
Austrian masters lists:
https://www.facebook.com/TemplatesAndWi ... 7340904184

maxvonlaibach
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Re: What did we learn?

Post by maxvonlaibach » Thu Aug 18, 2016 9:57 am

There's a couple of things that spring to mind:
- pSkarre is not as scary as she used to be, mostly due to the changes to FOC camping. That applies to Cryx in general, albeit to a much smaller extent.
- I think that Kell is the new Gorman. Previously he could kill single wound infantry. He still does that, but also threatens warjacks, multi wound infantry, and disables tough. Amazing value for money.
- The meta here hasn't shifted much. I'd say the most popular factions are Circle, PoM and Legion, but there's a lot more variety when it comes to lists.
- That scenario wherein you can just dominate your own flag to win is silly.

wizard
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Re: What did we learn?

Post by wizard » Thu Aug 18, 2016 12:49 pm

Malo sem gledal liste, pa praktično težko najdeš kakšno brez vsaj 3 heavy beastov/jackov (do 6-7 jackov). A je to tendenca zaradi PP-ja, ki je začel prodajat večje količine teh modelov ali je to dejansko tolikša sprememba pravil, da so to najbolj "optimalne" liste in se bodo posledično tudi najbolj prodajale? Ker sprememba pravil za teren (LoS blocking in več terena) bi morala po logiki ohraniti enako kompozicijo vojsk oziroma še bolj favorizirati enote. A so jacki dobili tolikšen boost z power up? Ali so samo enote toliko znerfane?

Ker za circle se mi zdi, da so določene enote veliko izgubile, samo so druge veliko dobile, tako da se nekako poravna. Pa pri circlu že prej enote niso bile premočne, tako da ni neke velike spremembe. Je pa res, da je visok armor postal večji problem na splošno kot prej, razen za določene casterje (Tanith in Reevsi recimo). Se pravi se je največ igralo ali beast/jack heavy armor liste in shooting liste?

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Baffo
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Re: What did we learn?

Post by Baffo » Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:39 pm

Keep in mind we're still in the first 3 months of Mk3, the meta hasn't settled completely yet, but from what I've seen and heard from assorted podcasts:
- Jack spam lists are more of a 'knee jerk reaction' to power up, as in 'now that jacks are finally playable' many players want to try spamming them with casters that support their battle group well. Spamming cheap jacks will eventually fade out in favor of 3-4 quality heavies lists for the heavy jack/beast armor brick archetype, but for now you can expect to see 25% of lists being Jack spams that invest 80% of their points in jacks and their support.
- What I would consider a 'balanced combined arms' list in mk3 is: 2-3 heavies and 1-2 combat units with 2-4 solos/support units (like shifting stones and such) and I'd say 50% of lists fall under this category (mainly because the 30-ish warjack/beast points you get with your caster forces you to get at least 2 heavies as opposed to mk2 where you got 1 jack/beast and spent the rest into infantry).
- As for guns, yes, most list pairings tend to have a ranged focused list in the pair or a list specifically made to counter gunlines (line of sight blocking cloud/forest walls are much more frequent than in mk2). As a general rule your list must be able to remove either 1 full infantry unit or 1 Heavy jack/beast per turn to be 'worth the investment' and handle a wide range of opposing armies. My optimized Vlad1 gunline can usually remove 2 un-buffed heavies or 2 units per turn staying 14-ish inches away.

As for the question about Jacks/beasts Vs infantry effectivness: jacks got power up and some other smaller stat changes (some jacks/beasts got +1 Mat); most ranged heavies that had 3'' AoEs were increased to 4'', which makes them significantly better at catching more infantry models in the blast. At the same time most infantry units lost a little of damage output (in Khador for example, all the Doom reavers and the Great bears lost 1 pow) and/or defensive stats (Kayazi assassins, IFPs, Black dragons, Uhulans, Man-o-Wars all lost 1 point on defense); all the small buffs to jacks/beasts and the small de-buffs to infantry combined into making jacks much more effective than before at killing off swarms of infantry. Anyway, there are still casters in the game that buff infantry high enough to make them worthwile, but in mk3 an infantry swarm is a much more skewed (and rare) archetype than it was in mk2.

If you have a melee focused army, you must also bring some solid defensive tech to deliver them (Line of sight blocking with clouds/forests, mass stealth or Blast damage immunity, and so on) or alternatively be fast enough to give the opponent only 1 turn of shooting at you (pretty hard to achieve due to pre-measuring). For Circle, one of their most important new tricks is to make big Forest walls with Sentry stones, caster spells and models with Fertilizer killing cheap friendly infantry (usually Swamp shamblers) to generate 6-16'' uninterrupted forests anywhere on the table. Wurmwood and Baldur1 have a spell to place a 4'' forest in their Ctrl, Cassius and the Woldwatchers have Fertilizer on their weapons and you can take up to 2 Sentry stones in any list you want. If you have any other forests on the table you can easily hide your entire army from the opponent for 2-3 rounds of the game, untill you get you melee heavies/units in range to charge the enemy line and start working at full force (or alternatively shoot the enemy and put up the forest wall to prevent them from shooting/charging back at you).

Weefsat
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Re: What did we learn?

Post by Weefsat » Mon Sep 05, 2016 5:28 pm

So lately I've been watching a lot of video battle reports on youtube so I can familiarize myself a bit more with the factions that don't have much presence in our meta (and also to study the play styles of other metas). I'm going to write some of my thinking about them in this thread to make it a bit more clear and analytical.

I'm not sure if this is the best place to have this writeup, but to avoid cluttering the forum with new threads I'm just going to hijack this one because it seems the most like a general strategy discussion thread.

1. Wrong Eye and Snapjaw get played a LOT (I would say they are in about one of three lists that I see). Their presence is so prevalent I would actually consider building my lists in a way that has a clear counter for them. Of course it's too late for that now but I think it's still worthwhile to think about what you can put in a list that counters them (and isn't useless even if they aren't present) while also considering what you can do about them with the tools you have.

Now you can treat them as you would a regular heavy and solo. Snapjaw is not terribly resilient in melee (a lot depends on starcrossed and hit rolls though) and once he's gone Wrong Eye won't be doing much for long. The problem of course is that while Snapjaw isn't the most resilient model (def 12/arm 18/ 27 wounds) for a heavy he still requires some commitment. And at less than 17 points of individual worth that can turn out to be a very bad piece trade for you. Sometimes it's all you can do, and those times you probably just have to play it smart as far as positioning goes.

The second option is to just keep away from them and shoot up everything else around them. Snapjaw's threat range isn't exactly formidable and Wrong Eye has to keep out of melee threat ranges so they usually won't be able to take aggressive positioning. This is very effective, but requires a specific list, a heavy gunline.

Thirdly, you can set up a pseudo melee assassination run on Wrong Eye. If you can pull it off an option like this might be extremely potent. A heavy beast will most likely finish Wrong Eye in about two attacks, gaining 17 points and it still has to be removed from the board after it's done. The main problem with this line of play is that usually you can throw caution to the wind in an assassination run, since the game will end anyway, however in this case you obviously can't. You have to pull it off but still manage your resources and not expose your caster. I think this is not a viable option for every list, but both my troll lists can probably pull it off in a lot of cases. It can probably be made easier by giving Wrong eye a low value charge target and thus drawing Wrong Eye forward, but at this point it's simply down to who piece trades better which was already under point one.

Fourth, you can damage Wrong Eye with a spray, a throw, blast damage and collateral damage. Blast damage and collateral are going to be too low most of the time, but in some lists and positions it might stack up. Sprays are quite situational but when you have them they are simply perfect in my opinion. The idea I like the most is the one with the throw. A lot of lists might have problems with it, as the damage from a boosted pow 12 is not enough to kill Wrong Eye on average rolls. However, he probably has to stay within about 6 inches of Wrong Eye, as starcrossed won't work for him if he doesn't and even a slight buff to the throws damage can make it lethal. Something like trolls or a colossal, that can easily get to str 16 has a good chance of pulling this off and the knockdown even denies Wrong Eye a tough roll. It's a strategy that is definitely worth considering.

Fifth, as for how you can build lists that counter them, you can use: purify + shooting, strong sprays like the Khador light cav, MK (I think the number of Wrong Eyes in the game actually really increases his value), Discordia, Jack spam or other nonliving models that deny Snapjaw the free and longer charge, Things that stop leeching (since Snapjaw has to be full of fury every turn.)

P.S. If wrong eye doesn't submerge for a turn because he was busy killing something Alten only needs to roll 4+ to destroy his mind. This is a reminder to Baffo that this is one of the rare beasts where you usually don't aim for the spirit first.

maxvonlaibach
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Re: What did we learn?

Post by maxvonlaibach » Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:39 am

Good writeup, although I'd say that wrong eye can do quite a bit without the snappy puppy (or another warbeast. He can always take another beast). Remember that he now gets 1 fury for each dead warbeast under his ctrl, so he can keep up castnig SC for 3 turns after Snapjaw bites it.
To me, the most dangerous list with WE&SJ is something like Baldur 2, with a submerged wrong eye sitting 5" behind two warp wolves, who are behind a wall, and Snapjaw just as a backup heavy way behind. This was actually a consideration when I was building my list, hence 2x purebloods with the tree. The problem is, if he camps 1 instead of casting submerge, that "assassination" probably falls through, since I'd need two good damage rolls to force a tough check. Mannikins are an option I guess, he's only DEF 12...

I've learned that I need practice unpacking Wurmwood under pressure (i.e. when I go 2nd). With everything but 4 beasts in AD, that's more difficult than it sounds.

Weefsat
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Re: What did we learn?

Post by Weefsat » Wed Sep 07, 2016 12:39 am

Here's 2 more things that I learned from watching video battle reports.

1. The clock is still very important in most mk3 metas.

I feel like our meta always naturally tends towards a single bombastic alpha strike turn. After it most of the opposing army is gone or you rolled badly and got seriously out of position. Afterwards the game will be quickly decided either through an assassination run or a devastating counterattack that will leave few models on the tables making turns short and time plentiful.

However in most videos I watch games don't work like that. People very rarely commit their arm even when the opportunity seems good to me. For example, if a heavy has the possibility to charge another heavy they will often choose to just shoot instead while I would usually choose to try and kill it. Or, instead of moving the whole unit forward to try and do as much damage as possible they instead choose to only send forward maybe a third of it. Often they choose to rather try to hit a high defense/armor model in the front and hope for spikes than expose their position and target something jucier in the back. Overall this leads to games that have a lot more conservative piece trades, consequently games last longer and about one in three in my estimate gets decided on time.

So what does this mean? Apart from just generally being careful of that playstyle it means that it's possible to win a game by playing it cleanly. If you make piece trades fairly fast and keep your caster fairly you can sometimes afford to actually go down a bit in both army and scenario points and still pull out a win simply by enduring long enough. Now this is probably impossible in the upper brackets of wtc play, but since it seems unlikely that we will be stuck there its probably worthwhile to stick through every game and try to outclock your opponent even if things go badly on dice rolls.

This isn't really so much a strategy as it is a mentality. If I can keep cool while playing and if I can visualize decent plays fast (instead of spending a lot if thinking time on the perfect play) I can probably increase my win percentage without actually playing "better" in a traditional way. It's also important to have armies with low model counts and clear deployments here. Luckily this is something I knew and kept in mind from before, but even by simply having lower model counts I might b eable to get a clock advantage on my opponent (or at the least it buys me thinking time for the assassination run).

2. I feel bad I have to type this out, but people are not below cheating. I've seen plenty of people who were very shifty with threat ranges and rules. This however is not the worst. It's possible (though unlikely) that overlooking certain rules was just a mistake since mk3 is still new. It's also possible that the threat ranges were actually more legit than they looked, but I simply couldn't make them out well through the camera. The worst though, is the people I've seen straight up lying about their dice results.

For example: Opponents tell them what the defensive stats of their model are, their roll is too low by one, and they claim they hit or something similar. I find it impossible that they wouldn't know the base MAT of their jack (and some banter from before implied they indeed do know how much they need to roll to hit). There was also no modifiers in play I made sure of that. The only way to avoid this is to know the rules of your opponent's models. When it happened, the opponent was always a newer or less active player. HE never figured out he was cheated because he simply trusted his well versed opponent when he claimed he rolled high enough.

This is a big issue and I've seen at least one tournament game that was straight up decided by cheating. It's important to stay vigilant as to what your opponent is doing and not to be afraid of being a dick when you ask him to see stats on a card or for rule clarifications.

P.S. 3. After writing that whole thing about cheating I just wanted to add that most people I see have a great attitude and are truly willing to help their opponents if it makes the game more enjoyable. I haven't seen real rule or threat range disputes and not even a lot of whining about bad dice. Most of the time people not only give the correct information but give more of it than you ask for. I would say that most games should be very enjoyable but it still pays to be on the lookout for the occasional sour apple.

maxvonlaibach
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Re: What did we learn?

Post by maxvonlaibach » Wed Sep 07, 2016 11:20 am

What batreps do you watch?
I like to get my WM fix from Advanced Maneuvers, since their formula suits me the most. They generally don't make mistakes like you've mentioned and if they do, they are quickly commented on. They are not competitive games though.

Fun fact: incorporeal models cannot be pushed with hellmouths.

Weefsat
Posts: 43
Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 9:16 am

Re: What did we learn?

Post by Weefsat » Wed Sep 07, 2016 2:41 pm

I watch all that I can get my hands on so it's hard for me to remember where exactly I saw each mistake/cheat but it happens rarely but often enough to stick in my mind. The one I had specifically in mind when writing the post though was this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3athangVcMM .

The Vyros player is playing against an obviously newer siege player. The Vyros player starts the game off fairly well. He pulls off a charge with Imperatus on Siege's jack brick (already here I was doubting if he had the exact range since he measured shiftily, but I wrote it off as a weird camera angle.) and kills 2 jacks. He also does some questionable plays during the game, like aiming with EEyriss even though she was KDed (and the KD token was right next to her for the rest of the game so its not liek he forgot). He then proceeds to miss the jack that was engaged with a halberdier, but doesn't try if the shot hits the halberdier as if he forgot even though he made a big deal about the extra defense the jack gets from being engaged so its not like he didn't know. If the halberdier died, which it likely would, the PVyros feat would be screwed and the game would be very very different.

There are some other things, but the worst one comes at the very end, about 1:30:00. There are two models contesting the flag that he needs to dominate to win. He charges in with the Griffon and kills one of them, then uses his last focus to buy an atatck on the other. This is the last actiavtion he gets before his Warcaster, that needs to run to his flag. Now its obvious that a lot is down to this roll. If the model doesn't die the siege player gets another turn to grind and it wasn't looking all that good for Vyros.

At 1:30 35 the Vyros player says out loud MAT 6 DEF 13 and proceeds to roll a 6 on his dice.

So at this point the newer SIege player has a spiel where he tries to explain that the remaining model (a precursor knight) doesn't get the shield wall bonus since he isn't base to base, but mistakenly says that he gets extra defense (it sounds ridiculous if I type it here, but if you watched the video you would understand that he is obviously just learning WMH at this point and is trying to be helpful). Either way they clear the confusion up and in the process the defensive stats of the precursor knight are made very clear, 13/14.

The Vyros player scoops the dice up at about 1:31:00 and just says: ".... so .... hits... " even though he clearly missed. To top it off he proceeds to cast mobility and runs afterwards, but at that point I was way too pissed at that play to even care about the additional cheating.

Keep in mind that this is byy far the worst case I've seen, but there have been other players who did stuff like nudging forward models and smaller stuff like that. If you don't know the rules you're liable to get screwed.

S'tan
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Re: What did we learn?

Post by S'tan » Wed Sep 07, 2016 3:25 pm

Playing like that is simply unacceptable. Wtf?! O_o

What's your breakdown on Hellmouth and Tree?

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