Tuesday, December 29, 2009

And the Winner is...

Yes, that's right folks. The tour is over! At least, as far as I know it is over but I have unfortunately had my gaming somewhat curtailed due to some minor medical problems. Ah, the appendix... What's it good for anyway?

Does this mean that the Kegslayer's Kriel is finished? No, I think not! After all, I still have a battle report for my last game to post along with pictures of how the painting has gone. The army is still not done but I have been enjoying painting them so I plan on finishing them up and getting them all up on the blog.

So, be sure to come back soon for a look at the Battle of the Stones along with some pictures of how the army is shaping up and also just who won what in the last Mark I tour at BattleZone Comics. See you soon!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Round Four... No, Wait a Minute. Is This Four? Maybe Three? Hmmm...

As you can probably tell, chaos is ensuing at BattleZone Comics as the weeks of the tour are starting to blur together! Actually, this is just because of my own wacky schedule but why take all the blame myself? This weekend, I played Shi in one of the games that I was supposed to play last weekend. All in all, I am really glad that I was able to make this one up as it was a blast and we also used the new mosh pit stone circle that I had made.

Battle of the Stones
Cryx vs. Trollbloods

For this game, I was facing off against Shi in one of my make up games for Week Three. Instead of just playing a 'caster kill scenario, we decided to play a mosh pit game using the expanded stone circle that I had made. Rolling off for set up, I actually won the roll but decided to deploy second so I could get an idea what I was up against.

On Shi's side of the table was Terminus, two Deathrippers, one Stalker, a unit of Revenants, and a unit of mechanithralls with the necrosugeon attachment.

Meanwhile, I decided to field the same Borka list that I did in the last game. Borka with the keg, two axers, one impaler, one unit of champions, one unit of kriel warriors with two extra warriors, and a fell caller.

With the both our sides deployed, Shi quickly set his undead horde in motion advancing toward the stone circle. The Deathrippers were able to make some headway onto the circle while the rest of the army could just move far enough to get into position for the next turn.

I followed suit, advancing my kriel warriors up the steps with the champions following behind them and the beasts flanking each side of my line.

Going into the second turn, Shi moved the mechanithralls around the side of the circle while his revenants moved into the center of the circle and opened fire on my warriors. Most of the shots went wide but one of the two that didn't managed to kill the shaman! Losing his rites was definitely a set back but one that I could work around.

For my turn, I charged my warriors forward and engaged as many targets as I could, which turned out to be not very many. Gotta love those medium bases! Even so, between the warriors and one of my axers I was able to disable one of Shi's Deathrippers and damage the other. Then there was the impaler. I forced him to charge so that I could try to take out the necrosurgeon but this put him out of my control zone. Still, it's only defense 12, there's no way he could miss... unless I roll snake eyes! Argh!!! Needless to say I am already making plans to replace him in future games. Meanwhile, the champions had split up as three moved up behind the warriors and the other two had moved with the fell caller toward the Slayer on the far side of the circle.

Heading into turn three, Shi moved the Slayer up to attack the champions but failed to connect with any of his attacks. The Stalker fared quite a bit better as it ripped apart one of the axers, easily taking him down. The mechanithralls moved to surround the impaler but only one of them managed to do any real damage. The Revenants fared just as poorly as they only managed to kill one of the warriors. Even so, it didn't do anything to stop the steady advance of Terminus into the center of the circle.

For my half of the turn, my warriors were able to take out three of the revenants but none of them could reach the quarter master. The three champions on the stairs moved over to one side to open a charge lane for the axer who failed to complete his charge. Again with the medium bases! Argh!!! Need to get myself some pygs so I don't need to worry about that anymore... On the far side of the circle, the other two champions and the fell caller all moved around the slayer and then let into it with a serious pounding! Borka also managed to get in on the action as he bounced a bomb off the disabled Deathripper and right onto Terminus' head. Blam!!! This was followed by the impaler actually managing to redeem himself, killing not only the necrosurgeon but another mechanithrall as well. Finally that beast was able to do something effective! Even so, it was not the MVP of the turn. That award would have to go to the keg carrier who walked up to the revenant quarter master and pounded him into the ground with the keg.

Turn four and Shi's army was rapidly disappearing but Terminus was still in pretty good shape. The last three mechanithralls again tried to attack the impaler with little luck while the last Revenant was just as effective against the warriors. The Slayer managed to hit the fell caller but barely did any damage. Next Shi had Terminus fly over to face Borka. After some luck on my part (and a couple of damage transfers), Terminus ended his activation by picking Borka up and throwing him at one of the standing stones. This knocked Borka down but other than that it just pissed him off!

My turn rolled around and I have to say I was feeling pretty confident at this point. Most of the Cryx army had been crushed and Terminus was right there begging for a smack down! The two remaining Kriel warriors moved forward and finished off the last of the Revenant crew while the Fell Caller smashed the Slayer into a pile of scrap! With nothing left to fight, I headed the champions over toward Terminus and Borka in the hopes of being able to get some support in the next turn. The impaler also managed to take out one of the remaining mechanithralls but failed to connect when I forced him to try to finish them off. This just left Borka, who was ready to put some hurt onto Terminus. Standing up, he started swinging Trauma and though a couple of hits did connect, Terminus was still standing at the end of the turn while Borka was sitting on a couple of fury so I could transfer damage.

Turn five and it was time for Terminus to bring the pain The hits that I had scored with Trauma last turn meant that he couldn't cast any spells so there was nothing for Shi to do except sit on all his focus. That meant a lot of attacks would be coming at Borka but I still felt confident that I could survive it with a couple of transfers... at least until I realized that I couldn't actually transfer! I had maxed out my remaining beasts the turn before leaving me with nowhere to send that pummeling that Borka received from Terminus.

So close and yet so far... Still, the game was a ton of fun and it was great to get my new terrain piece onto the table! The scenario really made you get right in there and this was actually one of the short games of Warmachine that I have played in a while. And when you have a bunch of pillars to maneuver around, medium bases can be a real bitch.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Round Three... Fi... Wait... Where Did Everyone Go?

Round three has come and gone but I have yet to play any games.  Kind of a bummer because I was really looking forward to these games but with my schedule it isn't likely that I will be able to make them up.  Ah well, I at least got a really cool piece of terrain out of it.

Wait, what?  Terrain for not playing games?  Crazy I know so maybe I should explain.

Earlier in the week, I finally broke open Evolution and started reading some of the scenarios.  Right off, the bat the Mosh Pit scenario really caught my eye.  It just sounds like it would be a ton of fun but how to mark the perimeter?  That is when inspiration struck!

I had built a stone circle years ago but the problem was it only measured 12" across.  The solution; make it bigger!  I cut out a 18" diameter circle from a spare piece of blue foam board that I had a after some shaping with a utility blade it was looking pretty nice.  A base coat of black, dry brush with some grey, add some moss and then screw the two pieces together and voila!  "Instant" mosh pit!

As I said, I still haven't been able to play a game on it but a lot of the guys are really interested in giving it a try so I'm sure to get some games in with it soon.  I am going to run it as a special event at BattleZone Comics using a variation on the 1/1/1/1 format that will focus on beasts and 'jacks.  One 'caster or 'lock, one light, and one non-unique heavy taking on all comers in a giant smackdown!  No date is set for this one but I'll definitely be posting more about this so be sure to check back to find out more.

So with all of this, it sounds like I haven't done any painting but that is not the case.  I actually started working on my axers, fell caller, Borka and his keg but I have only been able to really get anything done with Borka.  Still have yet to do his base but overall he is looking pretty sweet IMO.

He is done using the same techniques and paints that I used for the champions, except I added a little bit more detail to him.  Still not done but I really like how he is coming out.  Now I just have to paint the rest of them...

Monday, November 30, 2009

Round Two... Fight!

Round two of the League has come and gone with some surprising results.  This week I was scheduled to face off against Andy (a new Khador player) and Clinton (an old Khador player).  Man, is it just me or there a lot of Khador at the store now?

Andy was first up with his 'jack heavy list commanded by Sorscha which included two Juggernauts, a Destroyer, a Kovnik, a war dog, and Boson Grogspar.  On my side of the table, I fielded Borka with a few changes to his list.  I switched out an axer for the second impaler and dropped the krielstone bearer  for some kriel warriors.  The reasons for both of these changes were pretty straight forward.

The only ranged attack my army has besides the impaler is Borka's bomb which makes the far strike animus very limited while the axer has the thresher attack and a better MAT.  Combine that with the effects of Mosh Pit and you are looking at some pretty potent infantry killers.

For the krielstone I was a little more hesitant.  Being able to bank away Fury just seems like a handy ability and as I mentioned before, in a pinch the scribes can pack a punch.  The main benefit that I was looking for was the larger number of warriors that I would be able to field.  I also liked the idea of fielding the warriors in front of the champions as it would block LoS for most ranged attacks and would make the champions a little more survivable.

Unlike my last game against Sorscha, this game went somewhat differently.  Even during the her feat turn, about half of my army was still able to activate because she couldn't get line of sight to freeze them all.  Admittedly it was just a bunch of kriel warriors but they were really pulling their weight against the Devastator and the Boson and let's be honest; being able to use part of the army is better than just sitting around doing nothing for a turn.  In the end, I had to rely on Borka's bounce to save the day as I just could not get a direct hit to finish her off.

All and all, it was a good game but really, really long, clocking in at just over three hours for a 500 point battle.  Even so, I like the feel of the new list much more than what I had been running and I am looking forward to putting it to the test again next week.

So what about that second game?  Well, Clinton had unfortunately had to leave before Andy and I were done and he said he would just give me the win.  In a way, I am kind of glad otherwise who knows how long I would have still been there fighting yet another Khador player.  Don't get me wrong; it would have been fun but I don't know if I would have been up to dealing with another three hour battle in one night.

I think that these two wins might actually push me up to the middle of the field, which was not something that I expected.  Then again, there are still a few more weeks to get through before the end so we will just have to see what happens.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

There Is Ice Running Through Their Veins...

With round one behind me, it was time to start painting!  Looking at my units, I decided to go ahead with the Champions first.  Not only are they a good chuck of my army at 106 points, they were also the only unit that was already primed, making the choice that much easier.

For me, the first step is always to paint and highlight the skin.  This tends to be the messiest part of my painting process so it's best to get it over with before painting anything else.  For a base colors, I have used the Trollblood Base followed with highlights using Underbelly Blue and then Trollblood Highlight, all from the P3 paint line  This gives them a nice highlight but still leaves their skin with a very cold color which is what I am aiming for since they are supposed to represent members of the northern kriels.

I carried this cold feel through with their armor which I painted another P3 paint,  Cold Steel.  This metallic seems to have a touch of silver to it, making it brighter than I normally use for armor but helping to  keep the cold feel.  To tone this down a little, I went over the armor with a Smoke wash which is made by Tamiya.  This stuff was actually recommended in the original copy of Prime as good way to finish off metal parts and I have to say that I love the stuff!  Quick and easy to use and gives great results.  What more can you ask for?

Next, I painted their boots and any leather straps I could find with Bootstrap Leather followed by some Flesh wash, which is produced by Citadel.  This was all of the major parts painted so I went ahead and based them so part of my army is ready to go!  I plan on adding some more details later on but for now they definitely look good enough for table top quality.

So what's next?  Probably some of the warbeasts.  Like the Champions, these represent a good chunk of the army so getting these out of the way will leave me with more time for the rest of the troops.  But more on that later.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Round one... Fight!

And week one is over!  After my first two games with "Borka", I am currently 0-2.  That's right, Borka was owned both times last night.

The first game was against Pat with Sorcha and her Winter Guard elite cadre.  It came down to a suicide run that left Borka dangerously close to the only 'jack on the table but unfortunately it was enough.  After failing to do enough damage to kill her, Sorcha feated and the Jugger walked over and chopped Borka into tiny little pieces.

The next game was against Matt-Matt with Striker and Rowdy and there was just no way to get past Ol' Rowdy with what I have.  I sent Champions, a Fell Caller, and even Borka himself against Rowdy but all of my damage rolls were ridiculously bad.  In the end, Rowdy hit the ground and then proceeded to beat Borka into a Troll shaped smear.

The only question left is what went wrong?  In the first game, the medium bases caused me some trouble.  Maneuvering around each other can quickly get rather cumbersome if you are not careful.  There were also two mistakes made regarding free strikes and the thresher special attack for the axer.  After looking through the rulebooks and checking the errata, it turns out you can make a free strike against any models that moves out of melee range, not just one of them.  This makes mosh pit that much more dangerous because now the Trolls can attack everyone instead of just one target.  As for thresher, it turns out you can make special attacks on a charge, just not power attacks.  Combined with his animus this makes the axer that much deadlier.  Still, it was a fun game and a definite learning experience which is always a good thing.

The second game had some different problems to contend with, specifically my lack of heavy warbeasts.  This was not much of an issue against Pat with his one vanilla Juggernaut, but when Matt-Matt put Ol' Rowdy on the table it was a different story.  With my current list, it is very difficult to deal with heavies effectively.  The incredibly low rolls that I was making for my damage didn't help but having something that could have gone toe to toe with Rowdy would have helped.  The only question is how to best address the situation.  Matt, the owner of BattleZone, recommended that I get a dire troll blitzer.  I told him that I didn't want to because I don't like the model but after looking more at his stats, I am thinking that maybe I should reconsider.

Similar in many ways to the mauler, the blitzer also has a gun on his back with a 12" range.  Put the animus from the impaler on his and suddenly you are looking at a 16" POW 13 weapon that fires d3 shots.  The RAT is quite low but I can still see some serious potential there.  Have the dire troll slam or throw and then light up the knocked down target with the gun.

Overall, both games were a lot of fun and a great way to start the League.  Of course 0-2 puts me in a pretty bad position as far as winning anything but that's not what this tour is about for me.  A lot of the "old crew" are playing and that makes it worthwhile for me.  Winning or loosing doesn't really matter, as long as I can have some fun butting heads in the process.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The First Steps to Raising the Kriel

And it's official!  One of the medals for the last tour will be based on painting!  Huzzah!!!  Another shiny medal = even more motivation for me to paint up my Troll army.  Further proof that I really am a geek...

But back to the point at hand...

The first step to putting together an army is to do just that.  Since I already have a good number of Trollblood minis, I want to use those first when I put together my list.  The first step is of course the warlock, in this case Borka.  That part is easy enough but what should I put with him?

I am fairly limited when it comes to my warbeasts as I only have axers and impalers, but thankfully these are still pretty solid beasts.  Since Borka does actually have a ranged weapon, I decide to go with two impalers and one axer.  Having the impalers means that I will be able to use their animus to increase Borka's range which could be handy with the bounce special rules.  Hit something with a low DEF and then bounce it into a high DEF target for an autohit.  Plus the impalers will give my army some heavy ranged punch as well since that is something that my list is lacking.  Meanwhile the axer is just there to beat the crap out of things, a role that he seems well suited for, plus I love the mini for it as well!  Big old troll with a big old axe, great combination in my opinion.

Next up are the actual troops for my army.  Trollblood champions are a give for any Troll list so they go right in.  To back them up I am also including a fell caller.  His fell calls give me easy access to boosts for the champions and he is not a slouch in melee either, making him the ideal support for them as they charge into combat.  To round things out, I decided to add a full Krielstone bearer unit to get the added protection that this unit can offer, not to mention the ability to store up fury.  This is probably not going to be too much of a problem with Borka considering his spell list but it's better to be safe then sorry.  As an added bonus, the stone scribes are actually pretty good warriors in a pinch so having them around serves double duty.

And there you have it!  500 points of Trollblood goodness, ready to smack down all comers.  I actually have used this list before with Madrak and was not too happy with it but I was also playing it differently.  Then I had been using the old Troll block with the champions in the front, then the krielstone, and Madrak in the middle of them.  This formation used to drive me nuts because there is no maneuverability at all and it really limits how you can activate your units.  To get around this, I am going to try something a little different.  The champions will go in the front by themselves with the fell caller following close behind.  Meanwhile, Borka will hang back slightly with the krielstone behind and around him.  This will let me charge the champions forward while the rest of the army advances as a block with Borka in the lead.  The champions will probably not be able to benefit from the additional protection of the stone but since they are some of the toughest troops in the game I think they will be okay.  Will this work?  Well, we'll find out soon enough as the League starts on Saturday.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Welcome to the Kriel!

Hello and welcome to the Kegslayer's Kriel!

This blog is all about my Trollblood army for the Hordes miniature game produced by Privateer Press and all of it's exploits. So why blog about this? What makes it so special?

Some of my Trollblood minis have passed through several hands on the way to mine, and to be honest I had even tried to sell them myself! After listing them twice on eBay and there being virtually no interest in them whatsoever, I decided to break out this army for the last tour of the Mark I rules at my FLGS, BattleZone Comics.

The Trolls have a bad reputation locally as being a very bland army which is ironic when you consider how full of character the minis are. I also think that the fact that the only Troll player in the store was also one of the worst players didn't help the situation. He managed to take rules lawyering to a new level by loudly arguing about rules that only existed in his own little world.

As for myself, I am first and foremost a Cryx player so I do have to say that the Troll style of play does seem kind of bland. The Cryx are tricksy while the Trolls... well, let's just say not so much. So how do you make an army like this interesting? Well, by fielding the only leader in the game that come with his own keg!

Instead of just making a Trollblood army, I am actually going to make Borka's Kriel, right down to the tartans they are wearing. Fluff based armies tend to have a bad reputation as they are not necessarily the best tactically but I think it is going to be a lot of fun regardless. And to make things even more interesting, I am determined to paint the entire thing as well. Bare metal to fully painted in four weeks. Is it possible? We're just gonna have to see if I can pull this one off.