6 Nov 2012

Tuesday Table Top Fun - SR2012 and getting ready

Well folks I’ve done ok in my Warmachine/Hordes battles and I came in third at the last tournament I played at. So, I’m no expert but I’ve been able to handle myself.

I think my greatest achievement is almost killing eHailey on her feat turn when played by the resident Cygnar expert.

Another event lies ahead so I decided to go over my thoughts on prepping for the tournament.

Tournament play has restrictions. Steamroller 2012 (SR2012) is very specific with what you can bring compared to ‘normal’ or ‘fun’ play. The largest being the need of two different lists with a single FA:C (Field Allowance: Character) choice in each list that can’t be in the other. So if you’re dependent on Merc’s to get the job done. You’ll be hurting.

If I had my way SR 2013 will allow an exclusion from the current restriction. Allowing FA:C if the list meets the restrictions of a Tier list. By I'm getting onto a new topic for another day...

With the new larger base models with Gargantuans, Colossals and Battle Engines the meta has changed in the tournament scene. As far as I can tell I’m looking at the following four list types.

1. Infantry Heavy - Having lots of troops and unit choices with normally low ARM/Wounds and low survivability. Of course, Heavy Infantry spam is like this only harder to kill and lower numbers.

2. ‘Jack/’Beast Heavy - Using more then one, supported hard to kill versatile ‘jacks/’beasts.

3. Mix Bag - This is one you can guess for unless you know the faction and the player well enough.

4. Huge Base - By using a hard to kill huge base model with supporting units and topped off with options from the other three lists above.

My two lists have to be able to deal with some if not all of these army types. I just faced a Man-O-War spam with a 'jack heavy list and once I lost three of my five 'jacks with not a single kill on the other side, I forfit the match. No point in wasting time, but I had to go over the list since it had some glarring weaknesses.

Of course picking your army is important and knowing how to deal with your enemy should support your goals. Goals are the most important part of the whole list building. The military term is ‘selection and maintenance of the aim’, figure out how you expect to win and do it.

I’ll be writing a whole post solely on that subject but for now lets just keep it simple for the tournament.

There are two ways to win in a tournament for WarmaHordes.

1. ‘Caster/’Lock Kill aka the assassination run, and
2. Scenario.

So when you put together your lists, look at the type of scenarios that will be coming at you. Some tournament organizers will pre post the scenario selections and give players a heads up on what to expect.

So when building your lists you need to know how you’re going to win.

Think of it like chess, you win by killing the king, not pawns or pulling off fancy combinations of manoeuvres. So just because you can pull off a neat combo and make your dudes invulnerable to all fire and magic (I’m looking at you Zealots), it doesn’t mean it wins you a game. You need to understand how that can be applied towards the victory conditions. The reason I like this game so much is sometimes those applications appear on the fly and its awesome to witness.

Having the ability to move huge distances and get yourslef in a place to challange a objective early in the game, or line up a shot on the opponents's 'caster/'lock is a bit better when you put it to the test of how this will win you a game. With the Zealots mentioned earlier they would great to hold an objective and their AOE spam is pretty nifty to drop infantry lists.

So look at how each of your lists are expecting to win the various matches. Understand that you’ll have to forgo, ignore the scenario completely and go for the caster kill because your list can at most simply challenge or bide you the time needed in the scenario to pull the kill off.

So that’s a general overview on two things you need to keep an eye out when you put together a list for a tournament. What you’re looking at across the table and how you expect to deal with it, and how your list is expected to pull a win from the hat.