by: Kirk W Buckendorf
Last week I talked about how the League was structured and what my game plan was to develop a list. This last Sunday I finally got to play and learn a bit about the game. Being a card player, I’m used to having all of the information in front of me. I know all my cards, but if I’m unfamiliar with my opponent’s cards, they are always in play for me to quickly reference. Warmachine/Hordes uses cards to track models’ stats as well, but playing on a 4’x4′ table puts them a little farther away. With processing all the new rules, it’s difficult for me to remember basic stats of my opponent’s models, but I suppose that will come with time. I’m thinking about taking notes on a few of those stats this weekend, because I feel bad constantly asking my opponents for Defense, Armor, etc. even when I’ve just asked about it last turn. My brain just is terrible at all that kind of record keeping.
That said, everyone I played was great and helped me every chance they could. I played the League max of 4 Matches against 3 players but they all happened to be playing Khador with Heavy Warjacks. This was good for learning in a repetition way, but also difficult for me to figure out how to crack so many damage boxes!
With the League starting on Sunday, I spent that Saturday getting my models assembled and put together. Upon suggestion from the Trollbloods Facebook Group I magnetized a Dire Troll model to be configurable into it’s three versions: Mauler, Bomber and Blitzer.
To the left you can see the Magnets on the Back piece to hold the Bomber’s Fuse lighting Pygmy Troll or Blitzer’s gunner Pygmy. Also pictured are one of the three heads and the Bomber’s fists with magnets. I used a sharpie to mark the negative side of all the little magnets so I could keep track of which direction to glue them in.
Below are the 3 configurations of the Dire troll, The big claw & toothed Mauler, the machine gun Blitzer and the Powder Keg slinging Bomber. For the League I’m going to use the Bomber for his potential to take out multi-model Units with his AoE bombs:
With the Dire Troll and the Models from my Battle group box assembled, I packed everything up in the box since I don’t have a nice carrying case yet. I also spent most of Sunday morning making a cheat sheet of the basic rules to remember as I played. Having played Warhammer and 40 back in the ’90s I do remember them giving you something similar in quick reference sheets and cards for beginners, and I’ REALLY surprised that Privateer Press doesn’t do something similar. Especially for these Battle Group Boxes that are meant to help new players get into the game. At least print a quick reference on the back of the Primal Rules Digest on how to role for Combat and Damage, and a few basic things like Cover, Concealment and other basic rules that beginners need to reference quickly, as the huge rules set is pretty overwhelming to try and digest all at once.
With that all packed up, I headed to Empire Games to join the league and get a game or two in before heading to a friend’s house for a BBQ/Early 4th of July celebration. There were about 8 or so people there for the first day, so they paired us up randomly. I got play Dean playing Khador. He was especially patient and helpful for my first ever game. Here’s a shot of Ragnor with his Troll Axer and Dire Troll Bomber stairing across the field at their soon to be executioners:
With no idea what I’m doing I quickly rushed across the field to engage but not before lobbing a Powder Keg or two at the Heavy Jacks. I think the Troll Axer went down early, and here is Ragnor trying to assist the Bomber in taking down the enemy Warjack to no avail, before passing the turn and having the Jack take out my Bomber winning the game by taking out both members of my Warlock’s Battle group. I also learned not to use the dry erase marker straight on the cards themselves to mark damage. Pro-Tip: alcohol on a cotton swab can remove the black ink from the cards. (actually, I guess it’s a Noob-Tip) I acquired some plastic top-loaders for the next time I would play.
I wanted to play at least one more game, but was excited to get some BBQ in my belly, so I left to pick up my wife and head over to my friend’s house for some food and board games. The next day was Monday the 4th and Empire Games was going to be open for a bit in the afternoon for anyone that wanted to come in and play, so with the day off I spent the morning priming my models and showed up with the dudes all dressed in black:
With that, I got my 2nd League game in against Aaron, playing Khador. He was great to talk and play with, and helped me with some strategy advice in addition to being patient and helpful with the basic rules. Here’s a picture of his guys right before the bloodbath occurred, decimating my team:
After that game, I walked around the store waiting for another match and found a Trollbloods Pack of token markers, so I picked it up as bling is the only way to play games! Goodbye ugly gray PP Tokens that don’t show black dry erase marker very well! Steve was my third match, also playing Khador. He warned me about how some of his Warcaster’s powers worked, of which I tried to understand and take heed, but I think I just ran my trolls straight into his guys again like Leeroy Jenkins. Here is a shot of his models doubling up on my Bomber just after they took out the Axer:
I think my biggest mistake was concentrating all of my attacks on the guy with the Spike Face, he has the most Armor, so it was all for not leaving him with two guys to my one. Lesson learned, avoid spikey faced guys until you can double up on him without anyone to back him up. One last game for the day and Aaron and I decided to give it another go. He changed up his list a bit, so I thought I’d try the Troll Bouncer in place of the Troll Axer. I found that I was always rushing the Axer into Melee Combat while trying to lob kegs with the Bomber. The Bouncer has a little more armor and can act to take some of the ranged damage off of Ragnor if needed. Maybe I needed a little more control-centric group until I learn better what I’m doing.
This time I held back a little bit and lobbed Kegs with the Bomber’s Far Strike Animus giving him Snipe and +4 to his Range. I also got a few shots off with Ragnor’s Shockwave from a distance while he had everyone dug in with Earth’s Sanctuary. I was trying to keep the Bouncer back to absorb any ranged attacks with his Shield Guard, but he got antsy when the Khador models got close to the land bridge. He took a Pulverizer Spell from Ragnor to add some strength to his Ball & Chain and ran after the jack wielding what I think was an Ice-Axe. He got a few shots in, and lasted a little longer than the Axer was able to. I used Ragnor’s Stone Fortitude Feat to hold off the Khador killing me for one more turn so I could try to finally finish off one enemy model.
I think Aaron humored me and I got to finally take out a Warjack before getting finished off by his Warlock and remaining jack. I took this picture as a trophy of my first kill:
So I lost all 4 of my league’s first week of games, but I learned a lot and had fun. I’ll finish up painting the Dire Troll Bomber this morning, to get my one painting point for the week. Then I’ll hopefully have my Unit of Fennblades in to battle with on Sunday. Have a great week everyone!