Ruthless Casual: Am I Scythe-Blind? (Part 1)

Here I am again, writing my gaming column. Today's topic revolves around an interesting point 'Scape made at the end of our last game. Am I Scythe blind? Am I too focused on killing Scythes and not focused enough on actually trying to win? Let's find out, after the jump.

I suppose I'd better give you some context. We played a 1250 Purge The Alien, Hammer & Anvil game. 'Scape brought another dual-Scythe concept, this time with:

Cyberscape7's Necrons
Overlord with warscythe and sempiternal weave
Royal Court: 4 Crypteks with Harbinger of Despair and 1 Veil of Darkness
5 Lychguard with hyperphase sword and dispersion shield
10 Warriors
10 Warriors
10 Warriors
Doom Scythe
Doom Scythe

Bryssnotes: In Hammer & Anvil, this list relies on the Doom Scythes and Crypteks to linebreak and mess up my home base, whilst the 30 Warriors and Lychguard hold the fort. This is a surprisingly effective way of keeping hold of what you want, even if it does seem unbalanced.

Because neither of us had tried Flying Monsters yet, I brought:

Master Bryss' Orkmons of Chaos
Big Mek on warbike with burna and bosspole
10 Boyz with slugga and choppa and 1 rokkit launcha
10 Boyz with slugga and choppa and 1 rokkit launcha
10 Boyz with slugga and choppa and 1 rokkit launcha
10 Boyz with shoota and 1 rokkit launcha
5 Lootas and 3 Meks with big shoota
3 Warbikes with Nob with power klaw
3 Deffkoptas with twin-linked rokkit launcha
Herald of Khorne with Iron Hide and Unholy Might
5 Horrors with 1 Bolt of Tzeentch
5 Horrors with 1 Bolt of Tzeentch
3 Flamers of Tzeentch
Daemon Prince with Daemonic Flight, Iron Hide, Unholy Might and Breath of Chaos

For 1250 I thought I was doing rather well...

Bryssnotes: In this deployment, my Boyz are wasted, as they'd be shot to death trying to march up the board. I therefore need to rely mainly on the Daemons to wipe out the Warriors. The Daemon Prince is too expensive for my liking (and I really wanted a Mark of Nurgle too), but we agreed that Unholy Might boosts Vector Strikes as it's not a bonus, it replaces the original Strength, and flying around breathing people to death sounded like fun.

I declared the Herald, Flamers and one Horror squad to be my preferred section, and reserved the Koptas and all the Boyz along with the Prince and other Horror squad. Thankfully I got my preferred Daemons for once. 'Scape reserved two Warrior Squads and the Scythes.

Basic game summary goes:

  • I opt to go second, ensuring 'Scape's first turn is utterly wasted. I then embark the Lootas into the empty Trukk for protection, and Deep Strike the Herald close to the Necron Warriors 'Scape deployed, in an Archeotech building that was Difficult and Dangerous terrain, to scare him into shooting it and not the Horrors and Flamers. I manage to kill off three of his Crypteks (cheers AP4 Warpfire), including the Veil one, shutting down some of his anti-Ork measures, and also kill 1 Warrior with Deffguns (some others got back up).
  • All of 'Scape's Reserves get in, but the Scythes are unable to do much this round and one of them goes Supersonic. The Warriors on the other hand knock a wound off a Flamer and kill a Horror, not to mention kill the Herald of Khorne. The Abyssal Stave Cryptek proves next to worthless against small squads of Ld10 Daemons.
  • I fail to get any of my 'good' Reserves, only the Boyz and Horrors. At this point, I initiate anti-flyer measures, which because I am an Ork player involves barraging them with rokkits, dakkaguns, big shootas and deffguns until something sticks. This works rather well, as a lucky Penetrating Hit from a rokkit Immobilises and crashes one Scythe, while the other loses a Hull Point. Meanwhile, my Flamers make short work of half a Warrior Squad, while my two squads of Horrors down the Cryptek (who gets up again), and pick off a few Warriors.
  • This turn 'Scape vows to kill all of my Daemons. He succeeeds. He even gets to do the 'Riot Shield Manoevre' with Lychguard, bouncing my Wall of Breath (see what I did there?) back onto me. I also lose a Boyz mob, as they run away after a depleting from the Death Ray, and a few Boyz from another mob.
  • I get my Koptas in, and my Prince emerges from the Warp in full flight mode (nothing as far as I know says I can't Deep Strike in flying). His death breath breaks the Warrior unit in the building, and the last one standing flees. Meanwhile, my Pile O'Gunz knocks a Hull Point off the last Doom Scythe (would have downed it if it weren't for Jink saves).
  • For the next few turns all of 'Scape's Warriors try to down the Prince. Each time I ended up making two Iron Hide saves, which I passed consistently. Meanwhile, the Prince downed a few each round with Breath, also killing some Lychguard with Vector Strike and wiping out the fleeing Warrior. On Turn 5, the last Doom Scythe was dead, although in the process my Mek lost his Biker retinue and went down to one Wound. Oh, and at some point I killed the last Cryptek.
  • Stupidly, I decided to try for Slay the Warlord, and my Prince descended from above to Challenge the Overlord. Unfortunately, I forgot you could refuse a Challenge, and without his Iron Hide to protect him, Prince Ng'mnmarci the Anagrammic was taken down to one wound in Round 1, and then to add insult to injury he was sucked into a Tesseract Labyrinth in Round 2, losing me the Linebreaker bonus. I promptly took it back with the Deffkoptas, but it was all over.
  • The game went into Turn 6 and then Turn 7. By this point I had somehow killed all the Lychguard, but the Overlord went into hiding in a Warrior team. With the power of Look Out, Sir! at his disposal, and my utter lack of AP2, there was nothing I could do to force a draw.
Final Score:
Bryss: 5 KPs plus Linebreaker: 6
'Scape: 7 KPs plus First Blood: 8

Winner: 'Scape

Final Thoughts: I really lost the moment the Prince died. Had I remembered it was possible to refuse a Challenge, I would have kept him airborne and breathed on the Warriors some more. A combination of Vector Strike and Death Breath would have probably killed a squad, while my Lootas and Koptas moved up to provide fire support.

The points I spent upgrading the Herald of Khorne (who is my only Daemon HQ) were an utter waste, and he probably would still have been shot at without them. I could have used those points to buy the Mark I wanted on the Prince, or possibly the Mark of Tzeentch to make combat more feasible. Same goes for Bolt on the Horrors, but then I was expecting a few land vehicles and Deep Striking AP1 Bolt would have worked wonders on them.

The lack of mobility in my Ork force, and the small size of the Warbiker squad, hurt them bad here. I was really unable to assist the Daemons in any way, and considering how well the twin-linked dakkaguns did at Scythe hunting, I could have done with more of them instead of 4 useless Boyz mobs. But then, in another mission I might have wanted the Boyz...

Incidentally, our Warlord traits were useless. I got '1 VP per character slain in a challenge' on the Mek, and 'Scape got 'Scoring Unit' on the Over.

Anyway, I still have a question to answer. Has the fear of Scythes prevented me from being able to mount a proper offensive in Sixth? I'll tell you what I think about that tomorrow.

Oh, and my copy of Dark Vengeance has shipped! Here's hoping it comes early.


Cyberscape7 said…
I believe you forgot to mention something. The Daemon survived its first round of combat. It was, however, slain by the power of my tesseract labyrinth. BEST. UPGRADE. EVER!!! XD
Master Bryss said…
Bother, I forgot about that. Edit time!