Sunday, 31 March 2013

NATCON 2013 Tournament Report (Day 1)

Well I've ma naged an agonising night's sleep to reflect on the highs and lows of NATCON 2013 and am now ready to punch out my tournament report before the agony and the ecstasy subsides. The tournament was a 2500 point, 8 game event with a field of 18 players using very little comp. This meant there would be no easy ride once the points started adding up and it would be impossible to avoid the top players and the uber lists.Going into the tournament I was confident I had one of the best lists at the event but I felt I'd find it difficult to get big wins due to lack of experience (3rd tournament ever and only playing 3 games with lizardmen to practice), the nature of my list and the relative harshness of the painting scores. As such I set my sights on a top 5 finish.

My Army List:

Slann - BSB, General, Cupped Hands, Becalming Cogitation, Lore of Death
Slann - The Focused Rumination, Lore of Metal

Skink Priest - L1, Dispel Scroll
Skink Priest - L1, Cube of Darkness
Saurus Scar Vet - Cold One, Light Armour, Shield, Great Weapon, Dragonhelm, Venom of the Firefly Frog

10x Skink Cohort - Muso
10x Skink Cohort - Muso
11x Skink Cohort - Muso
10x Skink Skirmishers - Javelin+Shield
10x Skink Skirmishers - Javelin+Shield
11x Skink Skirmishers - Javelin + Shield
17x Saurus Warriors - Muso+Standard

9x Chameleon Skinks
9x Chameleon Skinks
9x Chameleon Skinks
3x Terradons
3x Terrradons
3x Terradons

2x Salamanders
2x Salamanders

Game 1 vs. Aaron Hodson (OK, Eventual Placing 13th) Dawn Attack:

Aaron was running a very solid ogre list but has only been to a handful of tournaments so was lacking in experience as to how to deal with Lizards. His army was:

Firebelly - L2, Scroll
Firebelly -  L2, Hellheart
Bruiser - BSB, some other stuff

9 Ironguts - FCG, Standard of Discipline
9 Buls - FCG

4 Leadbelchers
4 Mournfang
1 Sabretusk
1 Sabretusk
1 Sabretusk

Ironblaster
Ironblaster
Thundertusk

The game immediately started well with myself winning the roll for table side and selecting a side with two buildings close together which should allow my Slann general to be unreachable to the Ogres. My deployment went as well as could be hoped in Dawn Attack while he did not roll anything into his right flank (he had two sixes but used them to maintain a certain battle formation). This allowed me to scout my Chameleon Skinks around his flank and set me up to control the game.

The game worked very similarly to my past game against Ogres with myself killing the sabretusks early and then denying the Ogres the ability to move whilst whittling the blocks down. The Gutstar was the first to go to the combined efforts of the camo skinks and Final Transmutation, while I death sniped the second Firebelly. On my right flank my Salamanders and some skinks danced the dance of death with his leadbelchers as the Terradons wreaked havoc in his back line and paralyzed the Mournfang. My Scar Vet also managed a rear charge into the Thundertusk which he killed.

At the end of the game I was virtually untouched but had managed to claim all of his characters, the gutstar, the leadbelchers, the thundertusk, sabretusks, and an Iron blaster
Result: 17-3 Win

Thoughts: I was off to a good start but it was due largely to Aaron's lack of familiarity with the lizardmen. Once the camo skinks managed to scout in nearly behind him and he failed to take immediate action to clear them out (I did win first turn though) the game was pretty much a certain thing.

Game 2 vs. Mal Patel (Lizardmen, Eventual Placing 2nd) Watchtower

Mal is one of the top players in NZ and definitely a chief Lizardmen, He has played at the ETC and to be honest I felt a bit out of my depth taking him on and was almost resigned to treating it as a learning experience. Mal was running:

Slann - Soul of Stone, Focused Rumination, Becalming Cogitation, BSB, Standard of Discipline, Dispel Scroll, Plaque of Protection, Aura of Quetzl

Skink Priest - Lvl 1, Cube of Darkness, Ironcurse Icon
Skink Priest, Lvl1, Dragonbane Gem, Curse Charm of Topek, Diadem of Power
Scar Vet - Cold One, Great Weapon, Light Armour, Talisman of Preservation, Charmed Shield
Scar Vet - Cold One, Great Weapon, Light Armour, Dragonhelm, Dawnstone, Venom of the Firefly Frog

21x Skink Cohort- Muso +Standard
21x Skink Cohort - Muso+Standard
21x Skink Cohort - Muso +Standard
12x Skink Skirmishers - Javelins +Shield
12x Skink Skirmishers - Javelins + Shield
12x Skink Skirmishers - Javelins + Shield

6x Chameleon Skinks
6x Chameleon Skinks
6x Chameleon Skinks
3x Terradons
3x Terradons
3x Terradons

2x Salamanders
1x Salamander
1x Razordon

I began the game with control of the watchtower and elected to place my Saurus in there seeing as how I felt they'd be best able to weather the storm and it would prevent him from trying to assault with his larger cohorts until they were much smaller. Deployment though went poorly as Mal out-deployed, out-scouted and out vanguarded me in such a way that see my hit by a brutal volley of fire on the first turn.

The rest of the game saw me being generally outplayed as both Saurus managed to slam into my Slann bunker after some poor positioning on my part. Fortunately Slann are very hard to kill so I had plenty of turns before I had to worry too much. The game devolved into a swirling mass of skinks shooting eachother to death with Mal having the upper hand due to 1st turn, better deployment and experience. Eventualy the Saurus in the building panicked out with only 2 warriors remaining. With the clock running out of time I took desperate steps to try and get the win, flicking 6 Camo Skinks into the building to control it and casting a Purple Sun through his Scar Vet, 2 units of Skinks and into his Slann. I was becalmed but still managed to get it off and his dispel roll failed to get rid of the nuke. The vortex than travelled through his lines killing said Scar Vet and his Slann, earning me nearly 800 points in one go. Mal's final turn saw him assault the building, win the combat and myself make the break test to stay in control of the building.

Result: 15-5

Thoughts: I got lucky and that's all there was too it. Mal completely out-deployed me as I lacked knowledge both of the mirror match-up (I've never fought against a skink cloud before) and the scenario. Once the game actually started I felt my play was as good as it could be and I never lost sight of the requirement to get something into the tower, no matter the losses my army took. In the end though it was a great game and I learnt a lot just watching the way Mal moved his toys around and deployed.

Game 3 vs. Hamish Gordon (Skaven, Eventual Placing 6th) Battleline:

Hamish was running a pretty brutal Skaven Bell list that I did not at all fancy having to play due to its random movers and very high leadership. The possibility of getting Dreaded 13th was also ever present. To make matters worse I had never played against Skaven before. Hamish had:

Greyseer- Screaming Bell, Fencer's Blades, Skalm, Earthing Rod

Warplock Engineer - Doomrocket, Warp Lightning Condenser, Lvl 1
Warplock Engineer - Dispel Scroll, Lvl1 1
Warplock Engineer

40 Slaves
40 Slaves
40 Slaves
35 Stormvermin - FCG, Stormbanner
39 Clanrats - FCG

7 Gutter Runners - Slings/Poison
7 Gutter Runners - Slings/Poison
5 Gutter Runners - Slings/Poison

Warp Lightning Cannon
Warp Lightning Cannon
Doomwheel
Hellpit Abomination - Spikes

Hamish made the unusual choice to deploy his hordes in bus formations which game me hope that he would not be able to sweep me away and meant there would be more space for my army to work in. The Doomwheel was on his left flank with the HPA on his right. His Gutter Runners scouted very aggressively while I was more cautions.

I won the first turn and he instantly used the Storm Banner, buying time for his Gutter Runners who he now realised were very exposed.I achieved very little initially but in the 2nd and 3rd turns managed to destroy the gutter runners with shooting, destroy the Doomwheel who became isolated by using poison and metal magic, and execute a full zulu dawn attack on the HPA who managed to get surrounded by 8 or 9 units? Having claimed these points I realised I was up by about as much as I could hope to be and started just keeping my distance while trying to flick a miscast onto the seer or a final transmutation, but time ran out. I had killed off his chaff and 2 big rares for minimal loss and thus had found victory in a pretty bad match-up.

Result: 14-6 Win

Thoughts: Hamish really let me off the hook in this game. Had he deployed into horde formations and marched forward the first two turns I would have been screwed. However he gave me the breathing space and I took it which allowed me to concentrate fire onto his random movers as they came into range and claim the gutter runners who should never have deployed aggressively so close to a skink cloud. All in all though I was happy with my play.


So at the end of Day 1 I was sitting in second place with 46 battle points and already having played some of the lists I feared most. However I knew things would only get tougher as Day 2 would bring Blood and Glory where I was brutally close to auto-losing and Battle for the Pass where I wouldn't have very much room to use the army and would probably be pushed off the board.

To be continued........

No comments:

Post a Comment