My Twatifaux – Day 1

I’m playing in Twatifaux this weekend. It’s my first Malifaux tournament and it will end up doubling the number of Malifaux games I’ve played from 5 to 11. Before starting I’m going to note a couple of things.

  • First a big thanks to everyone I played. Great sports and very tolerant of my bumbling, and rules questions.
  • The venue. House of War is pretty impressive, a good size space, licensed, food, nice terrain and tables (not sure how much was theirs vs donated). The only knock is AC, it got pretty hot, 50 sweaty wargamers are tough to cool, but it was only about 25 out.
  • The Twats, free shit is awesome, well run deal. Punctual, professional and smoothly run.
  • I’m running Ramos all the way through, the only Master I have painted and I don’t think I could handle the thinking to try and learn a second master while I’m still getting familiar with the game.
  • I’m green, so green. Twatifaux will more than double the games I’ve played. Every master has been new to me so far.

Game 1 – The High Water Mark

I played Tim who was running Shen Long. His deal seems to be everything anyone does is focused and his a hers get to shoot at the endothelial turn. The strategy was Interference, out of the schemes I took Exhaust Their Forces and Neutralize The Leader. The big thing in my favour for these is that I have the spider factory Ramos (Interference should be fairly easy and an Exhaust action is better than a spider’s attack). Plus I have Johanna and Chen is a Tyrant, so I get ++ on the damage flips if I can line it all up. I’m also running a heap of upgrades as I got confused and thought Show Of Force was in the pool.

We both played pretty cautiously. He balled up a group around the archers and sent a Ninja off on a big scheme run down the left flank: Leave Your Mark was in the pool and I figured – correctly – he was running this scheme. I sent Johanna to spoil that plan (if you are within 4″ you can’t claim the VP). He sent Chen, I added Joss who had been a bit mauled by the archers to help. The rest of my force (Ramos + Howard + Electrical creation) headed up the middle, but biased to the other flank. I blew up the Creation and started making Spiders; Tim liked killing them and that was fine with me.

The first action was me killing the big undead thing on a 50mm base. That was all that was facing me on the right flank. Those 2 quarters were mine for the rest of the game. A couple of spiders ran off to make sure I kept control of things while Ramos with some spiders moved to the far left quarter to mess his life up. I think I may have lost Howard at some point (he didn’t have a great day to be honest). This strategy netted me 2 VP for the game (we only made 4 turns).

In the other battle, I had run Joss in to engage and block the schemes, but that lead to his death. However I had Imbued Energies on him and that got me 4 cards (including the Rec Joker). Johanna then ran in to make a mess of Chen. Which she did wonderfully. 2 attacks later, the red joker cheated in for damage, Chen was dead and I had another 3 VP. However Johanna was killed by the Ninja which left me with nothing to stop his scheme runner
That gave me the win. Tim had been able to get a point for Interference and 2 for Leave Your Mark. 5-3 victory to me and I’m the baby seal in the Shark Pool.

Game 2 – Welcome to Reality
This game was against Phil’s Gremlins. My local opponent who is far more connected to the scene described Phil as the #1 player. Zoraida was his master and the strategy was Turf War. Given it was going to be a ballzup in the centre I also took Show of Force and Frame For Murder on Johanna (she almost never survives, everyone is terrified of her and she’s not hard to kill).

Everything starts fairly cordially, my opponent links his Vodoo doll to Johanna and proceeds to destroy her. He threw some damage and some burning on and it was only a reactivated Howard that got rid of +4 burning on her. Seriously, burning on the Voodoo Doll is broken. You get the damage and the burning: so Burning +1 is actually 2 damage, 1 of which you can do absolutely nothing about. Plus the doll is just relenting, so once it’s tied to a model there’s not much you can do to not get whaled upon. Anyway I kept Johanna alive, as I didn’t want her killed by a condition (frame for murder). Next turn someone shoots the doll, and Johanna died. I think – that sucks but she’s my sucker so I at least get 3 points. What the fuck – I don’t even get that. Some shit about the damage being from a condition. This is soooo powerful, why would you take anything else? I can essentially ignore all the triggers and defense of a model, do double damage on all conditions and never get done on frame for murder. Anyway, maybe I’m just not experienced enough, but I can’t see how this isn’t taking out almost any model a turn (wtf – heals don’t transfer either).

Anyway, the 3 points for frame for murder wouldn’t have changed much. My opponent was better than me and losing Johanna lost me a fair bit of my hitting power and upgrades. As a result I never won the upgrade war (Phil had taken the same scheme) and all I really got out was a couple of points from Turf War. The final fuck me was Zoraida moving 18″ on the final turn to get Occupy Their Turf. So as well as being able to kill any model a turn she can move fast and has crazy defensive shit (did I mention the only way I damaged her was blowing up spiders after they missed attacks?).

The final result was 9-1 (I think) and I was out of the shark pool.

Game 3 – Grinding It Out

Another master I’d not seen before. My opponent, Nick, was running a Hoffman crew. His list had this incredible offensive capability: Howard, Peacekeeper and the Brutal Emmissary. A couple of upgrades, an Austringer, the flying guild construct, and some peon who I didn’t really notice rounded things out. My understanding of Howard is that he obeys stuff and makes everyone’s stats 6. With Headhunter as the strategy and Hunting Party in the scheme list meant his was a sensible choice. My running Ramos wasn’t such a good choice, but also wasn’t really a choice. I went with a schemey bent and took Inspection and Search the Ruins.

He killed my crew, at the end of turn 3 I’d lost Howard, Joss, a few Spiders and Johanna was in a box to be popped out on the other side of the board and irrelevant. In return I’d killed his Howard. This was not enough and I’d given him almost full points for Headhunter and Hunting Party. For my part I’d stuffed up turn 2, but I got 3+2 for Search the Ruins and Inspection plus a head to get me 6 points. However my opponent has gotten 3 heads, a couple of points for killing spiders and another 3 for Leave Your Mark. So a 6-8 loss that should have been 7-8.

I made a few significant errors this game:

  • I engaging his bubble of doom, I should have just avoided it and forced him to come at me piece-meal. He would then have struggled to get so many points for killing.
  • I need something fast to catch his scheme runner. The thing had a walk of 6 and nimble. This meant it was dropping to many scheme markers for me to be able to combat. Engaging it would have been good.
  • I was using Johanna as a scheme runner guardian. This was dumb, she could have been doing so much more good with her ++ to damage vs constructs. Plus the scheme runner guard wasn’t really necessary.
  • I forgot to finish Ramos’ activation on turn 2 or 3. I stopped after placing my spiders, but I still had another activation. Which I’d normally use for Arcing screen (+ Defense flips) which may have kept Joss and a spider alive.
  • However, I was fairly happy with my play, I didn’t realise how deadly Hoffman’s bubble was. It’s pretty rude getting 6 or 7 on every stat and adding upgrades to stuff. The slow from the Peacebringer hurt as he was using it on Ramos which was a killer. That said I got into shit, but fought it out and kept view of my schemes. 6 was my highest score for the day, and while I threw a point away and let him get 8 I fought it to the end and turned what could have been a trouncing into a close run thing.

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    We meet every Monday night at the Auburn Bowls club in Hawthorn East, Victoria, from 6pm onwards.

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