Malifaux BatRep: Disguised Misaki vs. Ironsides

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Malifaux BatRep: Disguised Misaki vs. Ironsides

Postby afeinman » Fri Apr 29, 2016 12:48 pm

(this is for you, tinfoil. Where's yours?)

Malifaux BatRep: Disguised Misaki vs. Ironsides

Strats/Schemes:
Stake a Claim, Close Deployment; Convict Labor, Show of Force, Take Prisoner, Search the Ruins, Covert Breakthrough


My crew:

Misaki (Disguised, Pilfer, Hidden Agenda)
Ama No Zako (Recalled Training)
Mr. Graves (Smoke Grenades)
Mr. Tannen (Recalled Training)
Katanaka Sniper
Oiran
Oiran
6(!!!) soulstones

JR's Crew:
Ironsides (some stuff)
Mechanical Rider (upgrade?)
The Captain (Casting Expert)
Johan
Gunsmith
Mouse
Arcane Effigy
6ish soulstones

I wanted to play around with Hidden Agenda again--it'd been useful in a previous game--and then Show of Force came up so I decided to play lots of upgrades. Tannen/Graves seemed like a nice match for the Oiran, and I was hoping for center control; this only sort of worked, because Ironsides became such an effective tarpit.

I chose Show of Force and Covert Breakthrough; he chose Search the Ruins and Covert Breakthrough. We played on a "suburban wild west" board, with buildings in each corner, lots of height-two crates including a line of them near the middle, and a forest opposite those.


Turns One-Two

With close deployment, I surveyed the clogged board carefully. He let me choose sides, which were pretty even, but I went for the one where I could hide in a forest and still contest the center. Misaki, an Oiran, and Graves set up in the middle behind some crates; Tannen on the left; the other Oiran wide right; and the Sniper inside the jail shooting out the windows. (Not my best move.) Zako perched in a forest deeper in my zone as reserves.

He set up in a ragged line, using the crates for cover, with the Mech Rider hard right, the gunsmith left, and everyone else center.

The opening flip, the right-hand Oiran got a Red Joker to lure Ironsides forward and out of position. I took that as a sign, and started to shift right for an attempt at an early death. This almost worked.

He moved forward and charged my idiot sniper, who was took close to the windows and became engaged; the oiran was right there but was behind crates (no LoS), and hence was not engaged, but he used the Captain to airburst her into combat. I'd lured Tannen sideways, then he walked over to spread his "no cheating" bubble to include Ironsides; but the Captain blew him straight back too.

Misaki charged in, scoring an excellent hit (severe damage), but I tried for Pilfer instead of disengaging; a 5 stat just makes that useless. Her second attack failed, and she got stuck in with Ironsides. The sniper tried to slice twice, but couldn't (a theme all game), and with him and the Oiran on fire from the airburst, things were grim.

The Mech Rider came zooming in and carved a scheme marker out of the sniper, also leaving behind a Gamin to drop some further back. JR laid some markers along the center line, setting up what looked like Convict Labor.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the board, Graves and the other Oiran were advancing in to the forest, backed up by Ama No Zako. Zako flew up for one turn and spent the second dropping a Claim marker to earn me one point. The center presence of Graves and Zako meant I also got a point for Show Of Force.

Turns Three-Four

Johan and The Captain moved forward, as did Tannen, spreading his style of Boredom around the board. He was very effective at stymieing JR's plans, costing him cards to cheat and generally being a pain.

Misaki was able to make effective use of Airburst to clear packs around Ironsides, but the Captain blew the sniper right back into engagement. Misaki then charged crashing out of combat, past Johan, but wasn't able to do much damage. Assassinate (I was blowing stones like made) did rob JR of 4 cards; I opted not to disengage with Next Target at the end of the action.

This did mean the oiran got fast and focused, and one tried to take down Ironsides with mixed results. The other charged Johan, putting a bunch of wounds and some poison on him. Sadly JR managed to heal a critical wound on him with Mouse, and so I had to devote a lot more attention to make sure he died.

One oiran died of flame wounds, and I lured Ironsides sideways with the other one (good cards in my hand, and I wanted her out of her tarpit). Sadly I lured her TOO far and she ended up engaged with Tannen, so I lured her _again_ right into the oiran and Graves. He didn't activate her next, so I used Graves to Show The Oiran The Door, pushing them both out of contact with Ironsides, and set up Keep The Peace; but JR was more than willing to spend Ironsides' entire turn walking through woods to regain engagement. This also meant Graves did a total of 3 points of damage to the oiran due to Black Blood over these turns...which later led to her demise.

Zako dropped a scheme marker and floated in to ensure I wasn't out-Upgraded for Show of Force, not a good use of her time.

The sniper finally died after doing nothing for four turns (but surviving 3 of them at one wound); the other oiran put a bunch of wounds and poison on Johan, and then Zako whispered to her to kill the big guy rather than see what other trick JR had to keep him alive.

Turn Five

With approximately 1 bazillion scheme markers in my zone, and the requisite three in the center, JR had 6 points sown up. He also had two or three Claim markers in my back corner.

So I concentrated on trying to earn some points from Covert. Sadly he had my crew pretty locked up--disengaging was NOT happening, as he had four Kings in his hand!--and he was trying to lift my markers instead. Tannen did manage to prevent one marker loss (using his ability to block Interacts), but Ironsides pulled up the other one so that I only netted one VP from Covert.

I'd robbed JR of one point of Claim (on turn 2), but that was it, so the final was 9-5.

Overall

A mixed game; both crews felt stumbling. The crates broke up his advance, as did the Lures pulling people out of position, but the Captain was even more disruptive. Mediocre flipping by Misaki made it much more expensive to make her effective--I was spending a stone on each attack (since I had them) and still only flipping 6s and 8s. He had strong hands and used them to good effect, except the turn where I got him down to two cards in the first activation. (Darn that Arcane Reservoir!)

Pilfer still seems more useful on paper than it is in practice. Because you have to target the enemy leader, and the stat is only a 5, it's really tough to have it land. Add the trigger requirement and it's just not feasible most of the time.

Ama No Zako was probably a mistake in this crew; two Ten Thunders Brothers or one and a Torakage (plus fewer stones) would have been better. She took care of herself--Terrifying plus Flight into terrain helped--but she didn't do enough to pay off.

The Captain, especially with casting expert, is really annoying to play against. That's a huge push, and the Burning is a bonus afterwards, and it's a high stat too. Ironsides was a super effective tarpit, made worse because I had things that made me clump up (Show Ya The Door, notably).

Graves and Tannen share the MVP, being way more frustrating and effective than their prices should suggest--especially together. And Shenlong, with his wind gust ability, is probably an auto-take if I suspect my opponent of taking Search The Ruins. One well-placed model can move all three scheme markers out of scoring.

Overall, a good game and closer than the score indicated.
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