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Gaston's Neverborn Dojo and Battle Reports

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With a new edition on the horizon, it seems like a good time to jump into a new (old?) faction. I knew I wanted Neverborn as I like the look and feel of the models, as well as the concepts of dangerous flora and fauna. When it came down to what master to start with, I consulted the oracle that is eBay and found a sweet $20 deal on a Pandora box set. So...looks like Pandora is first up! Kinda full circle as my first box in 2010 was S’omer Teeth Jones and my regular opponent only had the Pandora box...so many memories of farting her to death...

Moving from there, I knew I wanted to start out with two masters whose boxes complimented each other, so I selected Titania. It feels like both crews have a lot of willpower targeting overlap, but are different when comparing durability and approach. Additionally, I suspect that Pandora can benefit from the increased hardiness of Titania’s crew (armor and hard to wound).

I also benefit from having been around for a long time, so I had a random grab bag collection of models that I could already leverage in order to flesh out my master choices:

  • x2 Beckoner
  • x2 Stitched Together
  • Hooded Rider
  • Bishop
  • Freikorps Trapper
  • Johan
  • Aionus

Seriously random, but it covers a lot of bases. One thing I did feel that I was missing out on was a 4-5 ss model to act as a scheme runner. I waffled a bit over Gupps, Insidious Madness, and Changelings, but ultimately settled on Changelings. They feel very flexible across a range of situations, and also help pre-plan purchasing the Mysterious Emissary.

One thing I do try to pre-plan is a paint scheme. In addition to trying to get models that catch the eye, I try to focus on making it easy to paint, as I am all about the adulting and having a job and family now, meaning less nerdy bachelor time. With that in mind, I zeroed in on the idea that the Neverborn are the local flora and fauna of Malifaux and wanted something reminiscent of seeing a fox at night--the shadow, the outline, and the glowing red eyes. I had an old metal Hooded Rider, so I did a test scheme on him with two different glow techniques, white paint with a red wash and then just paint layers. Needless to say the wash wins the day for being faster and way more effective.

With that in mind, I later on did these guys too:

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Unfortunately my ordering did not exactly go as planned, so I ended up with just the Pandora box and the grab bag of random other models that I already had to work with. Poor Poltergeist didn’t even have a base yet!

 

Pandora (Neverborn)

-Woe is Me

-Rile Them Up

-Aether Connection

Candy

Baby Kade

-Depression

Beckoner

Beckoner

Stitched Together

Bishop

 

Misaki (Ten Thunders)

-Recalled Training

-Misdirection

-Untouchable

Ototo

Yamaziko

-Smoke and Shadows

Torakage

Torakage

Fermented River Monk

Fermented River Monk

Thunder Archer

 

Strategy: Turf War

Schemes:

  • Outflank (Misaki, Pandora)
  • Assassinate (Misaki, Pandora)
  • Distract
  • Plant Evidence
  • Vendetta

As always I’ll do my best to remember the order things happened, but it is from memory so please bear with me.

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Turn 1: Stitched moves up and uses Creepy Fog. Ototo leads the charge. Beckoner goes to Lure him, learns the hard way that he cannot be lured. Yamaziko drops smoke bombs. A Torakage moves up to help Ototo. Pandora moves up, Incite on Torakage (miss), discard Incite on Torakage (miss), Self Harm Torakage, weak damage. Everything else just moves up on both sides, River Monks gain Poison.

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Turn 2: Pandora puts Incite on the Torakage, summons a Sorrow on him, Incites again (miss), Self Harms the River Monk. Ototo moves up and swings on Pandora, she cheats up to make him miss and let her scoot away. Archer shoots at Baby Kade, misses. Beckoner walks over, Lures the River Monk forward and kills him with Misery. A Poltergeist is summoned. Torakage charges Beckoner, 2 damage. Baby Kade charges Ototo, takes him down to Hard to Kill. Torakage charges Beckoner, 1 damage. Stitched Kills Ototo. Misaki moves up to assassinate Bishop, after the dust settles she manages to discard my hand and do 3 damage to him. Bishop does 3 damage in return. Yamaziko moves up and swings on Bishop. Candy fails to heal Bishop. Beckoner uses Lure to put more Misery damage on the other River Monk. We both score Turf War. VP: 1-1

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Turn 3: Pandora goes, applies Incite to a Torakage, summons a second Sorrow, pumps both Torakage with Inflict (they were in range of the Poltergeist aura), and takes them out. Misaki takes out Bishop (we hardly knew you). Poltergeist moves to engage the Archer and River Monk, hits the monk with Melancholy to triple down on Misery and kill him. Yamaziko goes for the poor Beckoner, still fails to kill her, puts up Brace. Baby Kade moves up to engage Yamaziko for next turn. Archer sneaks away from Poltergeist, shoots at Pandora (misses). A Beckoner Lures the Archer forward, back into range of the Poltergeist aura, Misery and Stitched kill him. VP: 2-1

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Turn 4: Baby Kade activates and kills Yamaziko. Misaki kills Kade in revenge, concedes.

Lessons Learned: I think a big one right off the bat is a difference in information. I read forums like crazy whereas my opponent was less in tune, so I came to the game with a better idea of my crew synergies despite this being a first game for both of us with our respective crews.

That being said, there were so many mistakes and learning moments here. I was constantly forgetting to push Pandora with Incite so that she would be in melee, then I was looking to her projectile spell to get her into dodge so to speak, but that required shooting in combat...it was a mess every time I activated her. So I need to focus on learning my master better (go figure). I was also terrible at managing stones and cards (go figure) so need to work on that better too. Basically just gave away poor Bishop, he really didn’t deserve that.

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Got in another game, trying to get these written and posted up before M3E wipes out everything. One thing I did want to make sure I did was explore a little bit all of a master, so not just Summon Pandora, but Voices and Boxes Pandora as well.

 

Pandora (Neverborn)

-Voices

-Rile Them Up

-Depression

Poltergeist

Candy

Baby Kade

Beckoner

Beckoner

Stitched Together

The Tooth

 

The core concept behind her upgrades is pretty simple: discard a card for Crows with Depression, use Rile Them Up for Incite as a (1) Action, then two Paralyzes as needed.

 

Von Schill (Outcasts)

-Nythera Aftermath

-Oath of the Freikorps

Steam Trunk

Hannah

Lazarus

-Scramble

Pride

Talos

Freikorps Engineer

 

Strategy: Ours

Schemes:

  • Guarded Treasure (Von Schill)
  • Set Up (Pandora on Talos)
  • Undercover Entourage (Pandora, Von Schill)
  • Recover Evidence
  • Search the Ruins

Pandora wins the flip, Von Schill deploys first.

As always I’ll do my best to remember the order things happened, but it is from memory so please bear with me.

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Turn 1: Mostly indeterminate moving forward. The Engineer gets a scheme marker and puts extra armor and hard to hit on Talos. Hannah is able to copy it and do the same to herself. Von Schill attaches 3 Oathkeepers. Stitched together puts up creeping fog. Pandora activates towards the end, double walks up and Incites the Steam Trunk.

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Turn 2: Steamtrunk gets Incite’d to go first. Stitched puts up Creeping Fog. Engineer gives a Rams to Lazarus, moves up. Pandora Incites the Steam Trunk, burns a stone for a positive flip, Paralyzes Lazarus with Self Harm, Incites the Engineer as a (1) Action, scoots back behind the house. Pride walks up, tries to serenade Pandora, misses. Beckoner Lures Lazarus out of the woods to make hitting him with Self Harm a bit easier. Talos walks up, drops scheme marker. Candy advances, hits Talos with Wail and gets the Mood Swing trigger. Hannah copies the serenade from Pride, advances and pops the Stitched with it. Poltergeist walks to engage Hannah. Von Schill burns an Oathkeeper, walks twices, charges and kills the Stitched. Beckoner fails to Lure Talos up. Tooth double walks over. Baby Kade hides. I score Ours, he scores Guarded Treasure. 1-1

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Turn 3: Pandora wins Initiative. Poltergeist walks to engage both Hannah and Von Schill. I force Talos to go first, he is paralyzed by Sweets. Pandora activates, Incites Von Schill and Hannah for (1) with trigger, gets Crows with Depression, Paralyzes both of them. Incite’d Steam Trunk is next, it moves up. Beckoner successfully Lures up Talos. Incited Hannah goes next, Paralyzed. The Tooth charges Talos, drops 2 scheme markers with her triggers. Incited Von Schill goes next, Paralyzed. Baby Kade pokes Talos twice for a couple damage, Talos is down to 6 HP. Incite’d Engineer goes next, advances, drops a scheme marker, buffs Talos’s armor. Beckoner tries to pick on Hannah, fails. Lazarus charges Poltergeist, only 1 damage gets through. Pride sings 2 damage onto Pandora. Candy tries to escape the Talos, but fails the disengaging strike. I score 2 for Set-Up, he scores 1 for Ours. 3-2

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Turn 4: I flip a 1 for initiative, he flips a 2. I soul stone to reflip, get a 3. How’s that for efficiency? Pandora immediately goes first, locks down Von Schill and Hannah. Incite’d Steam Trunk goes next, does Steam Trunky things. Baby Kade drops Talos down to 1 HP. Talos gobbles up Candy, heals all the way back (bastard). Poltergeist swings on Lazarus, gives him slow. Pride sings at someone, but misses I think. Beckoner starts in on Von Schill with Despicable Promises. Lazarus swings on Poltergeist to no avail. Beckoner #2 brings Von Schill down to 2 HP. Engineer charges The Tooth. The Tooth swings back for some damage, drops a scheme marker with the trigger. He scores Ours, 3-3.

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Turn 5: Big initiative flip...he gets a 12 and goes first! Von Schill makes a break for it to finally get out of dodge, he burns Oathkeeper, charges and kills a Beckoner, and double walks to my deployment zone. Pandora goes, locks down Hannah, kills Lazarus with a Red Joker flip on Self Loathing. Incite’d Steam Trunk spins its treads. Baby Kade jabs Talos. Pride walks around and drops a scheme marker. Poltergeist moves to engage Talos and the Engineer. Distraction creates a fun interaction where he cannot cheat to keep Candy in the tank, so she pops out. Talos then just swings a few times. Candy Self Harms the Engineer. He then activates and dies to Sours. I score Ours, he scores Entourage, 4-5.

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Lessons Learned: This was a crazy game, I did come out of it feeling like I learned so much. First off, Voices Pandora seems to be quite strong right out of the box, but I can very much see her being a bad NPE. It will be interesting seeing how she functions going forward into M3E, as I would assume that her hard control playstyle will be toned down, but they appear to be focusing more on a soft control style for her?

Other learning points/mistakes:

-I did a very poor job understanding and reading the strategies, that resulted in me playing them wrong and cheating myself points (especially on Entourage)

-I did a poor job setting up to score on Set-Up, with the Beckoner placing the scheme marker. The concept was to pull the Talos into range of it, but I ended up setting it too far back so that Baby Kade could not place another marker in the correct spot.

-Conversely, the Tooth was awesome at Set-Up!

-I also played Candy poorly in several respects there, not keeping in mind what attacks have a projectile and which do not. I had burned a red joker to get Mood Swings off, I could have dropped a scheme marker then for Set-Up. Also when I Lured the Talos I pulled him into engagement range of Candy which prevented her from Mood Swinging the Talos again.

-I think a big thing is that I had a perfect set up for Turn 3, which I was pretty solidly behind the wheel….but did nothing with it. I failed to kill off any models, to really score much in the way of points. I think this may be a combination of crew and poor gameplay, I did find myself struggling to get damage to stick on a lot of his models. It wasn’t until Turn 5 when I actually killed anything.

Overall, it makes me really excited to get deeper into the game, faction, master and new edition. I am grateful for my opponent’s patience with all my newness and playing a Paralyze caster too.

I have been kind of trying to filter down which Pandora is best when, and was thinking:

  • Voices - Spread strategy, elite crew
  • Box - Central Strategy, mob crew (perhaps summoners)
  • Summon - Central Strategy, non-mob crew

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@Gaston would you happen to be the same Gaston that played a pig faction in another miniatures game and held a podcast on them?

Bishop is solid but I would suggest looking into the hooded rider if possible for a similar point model. Also it gives you another avenue to get Panda up the board if needed or out of melee. Also he can help pull your stitched up the board. To keep Panda even safer the effigy is a cute model to add if you can find one.

Candy is a tough model to play. The beckoners help her out a lot by pulling things for her to give candy to or be around for sweets and sours. With Panda playing voices I've found Candy and her are trying to do a similar thing and Panda is just beating candy to the punch and I'm missing opportunities to use candy's AP effectively. Box opens Panda can use Candy because then you're just trying to nuke things down and Candy's wailing shots start doing a bit more damage since they're willpower shots.

I'm excited to see what exploration you take with Panda next, I'll direct some of our locals that recently picked her up this way for a second opinion!

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8 hours ago, Sc4rpelli said:

I'm struggling with candy too. Nice to know I'm not alone in that! 

Never alone!

I will say what a difference a game makes. In my first game I was floundering a bit, in my second I found the niche for her to function in (until she got buried). My knee jerk was to actually leave her at home until I started fiddling with her a bit, she definitely seems to take practice. It feels like she is a piece that wants to go last-ish, toss her trigger on something big that has already activated, then get within 3". My learning moments were of course actually figuring that out (go figure!) and then the painful realization that the trigger is on a projectile attack, so engagement is a thing. I feel like if I am playing Voices Pandora I would want to keep her in, whereas if I am playing Box or Woe Pandora I was looking much harder at Aeslin who does similar things, but has more reliable damage and is more durable? Maybe? It sounds like @Rionnay knows better than I, but I may experiment with it anyways just for fun!

@Rionnay Not past tense, we still pig it up. ;) I do have the Hooded Rider done up, I was just trying to be cute with Bishop and target willpower and the the trigger to push models into Pandora's swirl in the middle.

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1 hour ago, Gaston said:

 It sounds like @Rionnay knows better than I, but I may experiment with it anyways just for fun!

 

I don't know that much more lol I always find the most creative way to get her killed and never get a return on her. I've been playing her in Woe mostly so I've been taking her there for the paralyze when possible.

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2 hours ago, Gaston said:

I will say what a difference a game makes. In my first game I was floundering a bit, in my second I found the niche for her to function in (until she got buried). My knee jerk was to actually leave her at home until I started fiddling with her a bit, she definitely seems to take practice.

Agree! She requires some finesse. I'm playing her with the summoning Pandora, not sure if its the best place for candy, I'm often in the situation where the only condition I manage to put on my enemies is mood swing so I can't summon to save the activation control for candy. Also I play most of my games against resser or acanists, the arcanists keep trying to shoot from a distance and the resser throw the summoned units to candy's face so I can't paralyze the units I really want to. I'm a begginer in malifaux, I'm guessing it will take some time before I can make good use of her crew, but anyway I always have a great time playing Pandora!

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With the Beta wrapped up (I guess?) it’s time to get back to this. I have been working my way through the Neverborn masters, playing them until I get comfortable. Thus far has been Lucius, Pandora, Euripidies, Titania, and now Marcus. I must confess I am hitting a bit of a wall with him, something is just not firing right for me. 

In that vein, I have been trying to plan and think through Marcus a bit more, and come up some “rules” to how to play him better.

One thing I definitely have noticed is that the target numbers can be a significant drain on your hand. This surprised me a little, as they are fairly low, and I was dismissive of the impact, but maybe I just suck at flipping 4’s and 5’s. To that end, I was looking to really up my card draw game, by adding in Ancient Pact for two instances of Nefarious Pact, as well as focusing on the Surge trigger on Primal Roar and cycling Myranda’s upgrades to trigger Primal Domain. 

In addition to the built in card draw mechanics, I was trying to get further use from the Jackalope. While I conceptually understand its place in the crew as a useless pile of garbage...I mean charge blocker...I was also wondering if it would be possible to cut it up into little pieces. To that end I looked into Lilitu for Sadistic Glee (as well as growing into a Mature Nephilim mid/late game and the Lure) and the Black Blood Shaman for Blood Clot, Blood Sacrifice, and Blasphemous Ritual. 

For Marcus himself, my basic rule of thumb is only bother to set up Mutations on Turn 1, then Turn 2 onwards he goes combat master. I am particularly keen on combining Pouncing Strike with Serrated Teeth and Claws to apply Adversary to opponents and then have the beasts key off of that (it also makes them more efficient without cheating from my poor hand). 
 
Beast-wise I have previously tried Rougarou and Cerberii, and I wanted to explore Rattlers a bit. From a stat perspective, Rougarou are Def 4/Wp 5, Cerberii are 5/4, and Rattlers are 6/5. I hoped that combining Def 6 with the positive flip from Huntress would yield good results. I also wanted the explore the Poison theme with Scorpius (and +2 Armor). 

All that in mind, time for a game!

Reckoning

Claim Jump
Deliver a Message (Marcus, Zipp)
Assassinate
Power Ritual (Zipp)
Take Prisoner (Marcus--Iron Skeeter)

Zipp, 3ss
-Earl Burns
Mancho Roja
Burt
Gracie
Flying Piglet
First Mate
Iron Skeeter
-12 Cups of Coffee

Marcus, 5ss
-Inhuman Reflexes
Jackalope
Lilitu
Scorpius
Razorspine Rattler
-Ancient Pact
Razorspine Rattler (Proxied by Rougarou)
-Ancient Pact
Myranda

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Turn 1 Summary

Gracie uses Ride with Me on Burt, then walks and Concentrates. Marcus mutates Feathers onto the right Snake, Armored Plates onto the Scorpius, Camouflage onto the left Snake, and Horns on Myranda. He uses Primal Roar, and gets Surge, then he uses Call of the Wild to walk the right Rattler. Zipp builds a Piano fort and Earl helps! Myranda, cycles her upgrade to Feathered Wings for card draw, walks. Most everything else walks or positions and uses Concentrate as needed.

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Turn 2 Summary

Marcus walks, adds Thick Horns onto Scorpius. He uses Primal Roar, Call of Wild to make Scorpius charge Gracie, Severe damage (down to 2), Poison. Gracie activates, takes 1 damage, uses Ride with Me on Burt, charges Scorpius, does 5 damage (down to 3), attacks again, 2 damage (down to 1). Scorpius, focus attacks Gracie, gets her down to 2 health, attacks again and misses. First Mate walks, Leaps, kills Rattler in two swings. Lilitu draws off Sadistic Glee, walk/charges Gracie, 1 damage. Zipp makes 2 Pianos. Jackalope walks, Leaps, and does 2 damage to Flying Piglet. Skeeter uses Ride with Me on FIrst Mate, Walks, schemes. Myranda transforms into Cerberus, walk/charge Roja for 3 damage. She takes 2 back from Cage Fighter. Earl makes a Piano marker, attacks Jackalope for 3 damage. Rattler uses Ambush, then charges and kills the Flying Piglet. Roja heals, attacks Cerberus for 4 damage, Injured 1. He then charges Rattler, but misses. Burt tosses a Grenade which does 1 damage to Scorpius. He charges and kills it. The he does another 4 damage to Lilitu and gives her Slow.

Gracie dies to Poison.

Marcus: 1 VP (Reckoning)
Zipp: 2 VP (Reckoning, Power Ritual)

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Turn 3 Summary

Marcus charges in and kills Burt. He uses Chimeracy to attach Armored Plates to Cerberus and heal it 2. Zipp charges and kills Lilitu, shoots Cerberus for 1 damage. Rattler walks and charges Earl, kills him and Repositions. Roja walks, charges and kills the Cerberus. First Mate Delivers a Message to Marcus, does 4 damage to Rattler. 

Marcus: 2 VP (Reckoning)
Zipp: 4 VP (Reckoning, Deliver a Message)

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Turn 4 Summary

Rattler Delivers a Message and does 4 damage to First Mate. Roja kills the Jackalope...twice. Marcus chases down the First Mate and finishes him off. Skeeter schemes, Zipp makes all the Pianos. 

Marcus: 3 VP
Zipp: 4 VP

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Turn 5 Summary

Zipp escapes Marcus using Blast Off and the Rattler cannot catch up with the Iron Skeeter.

Marcus: 3 VP
Zipp: 4 VP

Lessons Learned

My opponent definitely outplayed me by deploying on the right flank and then withdrawing once I had committed a Rattler and Myranda. I had the speed to bring them back in, but made a mistake setting them into Roja rather then supporting other models. I failed to score Take Prisoner, as I thought I was fast enough to keep up with the Iron Skeeter, but that ended up being untrue. 

I was pleased with Marcus’s offensive performance, as he managed to pick off Burt and the First Mate, although I did not get to leverage Teeth and Claws as I had hoped to do so. I was also disappointed in my ability to take damage and more importantly make my opponent miss critical attacks. I also under used Lilitu, although with the Pianos it was difficult to get solid LoS. It is a bit frustrating that there is no access to Blow It Away in Neverborn, instead I would need to pay to hire both Pandora and the Poltergeist to get access to Telekinesis. 

Final mistake was putting attacks into Zipp rather than working to the the Rattler over to the Skeeter. Cost me a VP and a tied game. Retrospectively, Claim Jump or Power Ritual would have been better choices.

Mistakes aside, thus far this was my best outing with Marcus which I think gives hope for the future?
 

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Some more time wearing my favorite Chimera skin!

Plant Explosives

Take Prisoner [Marcus: kneeling Bandido]
Harness the Leyline [Parker]
Vendetta [Marcus: Crockett, Sue]
Search the Ruins
Dig Their Graves [Parker]

Marcus, 5ss
-Jackalope
Paul Crockett
Iggy
Serena
Sabertooth Cerberus
Sabertooth Cerberus
Lilitu

Parker, 3ss
-Doc Mitchell
Mad Dog
Hodgepodge Emissary
Sue
Bandido
Bandido
Ashes and Dust

Going into this game, I wanted to put a lot more self-emphasis on finishing Schemes, getting that second point. Once my opponent announced Parker, I knew anything with scheme markers was a bad idea as he will just gobble them up, so that pushed me to the only two options, Vendetta and Take Prisoner. I was pretty ok with these, as I love Crockett and his 14” gun is great for Vendetta, and I wanted to experiment more with a solid Lure in a Marcus crew, which suits Take Prisoner well. I also added in Iggy for Arson to blow away scheme markers at range, to counter Parker’s inevitable scheming. 

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Turn 1 Summary

Parker stones cards, Marcus attaches Feathered Wings. Parker wins Initiative.

Marcus attaches Camouflage on both Cerberus, fail Chimeracy another two times, and uses Primal Roar (stone for Surge trigger). Bandido charges Crockett for 2 damage and to make him drop scheme. Crockett, walks, focuses, and Kicks Up Dust. Sue misses Crockett and uses Man in Black. Jackalope and Doc mope around and focus. Serena removes the scheme marker and heals Crockett to full. Emissary gives a Floral Bonnet Ashes and Dust (conversion incoming). Lilitu pokes the Jackalope for a card. Ashes and Dust and Iggy walk around. Bandido charges Crockett and misses. Cerberus and Mad Dog move around, Mad Dog drops a Blow it to Hell marker to get rid of my cover. Cerberus leaps, charges Bandido, kills, gets bomb, walks back. Parker puts 2 damage into the Cerberus. 

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Turn 2 Summary

Marcus stones for cards, keeps Feathered Wings. Parker wins Initiative.

Parker shoots down the Cerberus, uses Draw Attention twice to make Ashes and Dust drop a Bomb and a scheme on the centerline. Marcus uses Primal Roar and triggers Surge, attaches Camouflage onto Paul and Armored Plates onto Cerberus. He walks and drops a bomb. Sue puts no damage onto Marcus, Jackalope does nothing.Emissary pushes a Bandido, walks and attacks Marcus, miss. Serena charges Parker for 4 damage, 2 soulstoned away. Bandido goes fast, puts 4 damage on Marcus, (soulstone away 2). Marcus uses Butterfly Jump to engage and prevent shooting. So instead they use At Gunpoint on the Cerberus, to make it charge Lilitu, burn its Focus, but fortunately for me hits the Black Joker on damage.
Cerberus charges Sue for 3 damage.
Mad Dog attacks Cerberus with Cigar, does 1 damage, burning, injured. He tries to shoot, but fails terror. Paul shoots Sue, scores Vendetta and uses Forage to remove a Parker scheme marker from the centerline. Doc heals Sue 2. Lilitu uses Sadistic Glee on the Sweet Rabbit, Lures the Bandito. Ashes charges Iggy, Red Joker hit, Black Joker damage. Iggy punches Ashes, Black Joker damage. He then uses Arson to pick off the other scheme marker on the centerline.

Marcus: 3 VP (Plant Explosives, Take Prisoner, Vendetta)
Parker: 1 VP (Plant Explosives)

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Turn 3 Summary

Marcus stones cards, keeps Feathered Wings. Parker wins initiative.

Parker uses Stick Up on Serena for 2 damage, gets Ashes to place another Bomb. He then Sticks Up Crockett, 2 damage. Gets Sue to place a scheme marker. He uses Bandit Raid to push the Bandido and shoot Crockett for 2 damage. Marcus uses Primal Roar with Surge, charges Sue, hits twice to kill. He triggers Pouncing Strike on Mad Dog, but misses both remaining attacks. Bandito, tries to At Gunpoint the Cerberus again, but the cat is able to avoid it via discard. Cerberus instead leaps and kills Doc. Emissary does 2 damage to the Cerberus.
Serena drops a Bomb, charges Parker, but misses. Then she heals Crockett 1 damage. Mad Dog puts 3 damage on the Cerberus. Jackalope...walks. Ashes uses focus to attack iggy, kills him and makes an Abomination. Lilitu, kills da Wabbit, grabs 2 Corpses, and grows up into a Mature Nephilim. Crockett decides to miss the Emissary twice, out of politeness.

Game ends on time.

Marcus: 6 VP (Plant Explosives, Take Prisoner, Vendetta)
Parker: 2 VP (Plant Explosives)

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Lessons Learned: Don’t let the score fool you, ending on Turn 3 is way different than Turn 5. Crockett needed to make it out alive (and was on 3 health), not to mention he still had time for Leyline and Dig Graves. I --highly-- doubt I could keep him locked out of schemes completely.

That being said, the game ended better than it felt. It really did feel like I was kinda barely hanging on and got a lot of lucky breaks to keep me going (he hit Black Joker on damage 3 times for example). Marcus also got off to a reallllly rough start with Chimeracy (literally did not get it off without cheating all game). Something about him and low target numbers just trips me up so bad. I also did miss Ancient Pact and the card draw aspects quite a bit too. 

It also still feels rough defensive stat wise on the Cerberusii (pretty sure my opponent thought I was being dramatic). That WP 4 just keeps getting picked on, the Bandido gave me flashbacks to Amina obeying them to attack each other. It kinda pushes me back towards the Rattlers, with better defensive stats, and potentially Huntress off Myranda. Also kinda makes you ask the question: is Marcus secretly a brick master? Keep everyone together and use Lures to pull victims in?

@Kolath
 

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Based on how you wrote it, it sounds like you attached Mutation upgrade to Marcus at start of the turn. Guided Evolution says to do it at the start of Marcus' activation.

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1 hour ago, Nikodemus said:

Based on how you wrote it, it sounds like you attached Mutation upgrade to Marcus at start of the turn. Guided Evolution says to do it at the start of Marcus' activation.

The best part of write ups is I get to learn all the embarrassing mistakes I didn't know I was making... :)

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On 5/8/2019 at 7:39 PM, Gaston said:

Don’t let the score fool you, ending on Turn 3 is way different than Turn 5.

One of these days when you don't have a 10pm cut off we will finish an actual 5 turn game and see how it goes :)

That said, while I was killing things, I was definitely on the ropes scheme-wise. I should absolutely have been able to predict his schemes and the fact that I didn't meant I gave up easy points that should have been somewhat preventable. I thought Dig would be a little easier with the potential scheme marker placement, but ended up continuing to be a hard scheme to time right. Bringing in Ashes as an out of keyword hire though was I think a good call. The ability to get the bonnet and the free interacts off Parker was really solid for this particular mission.

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4 minutes ago, Kolath said:

Bringing in Ashes as an out of keyword hire though was I think a good call. The ability to get the bonnet and the free interacts off Parker was really solid for this particular mission.

As an Outcast player, what does Ashes fear? Bc I fear him.

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Things that turn off Demise abilities, ranged damage, debuffs, things that can move my models (to disrupt the rebirth cycle), and finally he fears any place on the board that is more than like 13 inches from a table side.

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Game night!

The pool was:

Reckoning

Search the Ruins
Breakthrough
Power Ritual
Assassinate
Claim Jump 

I declared Marcus, and my opponent declared McMourning. Fortunately I have basically no M3E experience versus Ressers and haven’t seen McMourning since 1st Ed. Nor have I really read any of their cards. I kinda sorta remember McMourning does poison stuff, so I grab the Scorpius. Since it is Reckoning, I grab Adze for Lure to split a sucker out of the pack, and Iggy to up the Burning damage, also to scheme block (3 of 5 have markers). Serena is my go to gal for Claim Jump, and I added Cojo into the mix (he can push models away, and also brings a ton of wounds which I hope make him more durable than previous beasts have been). Finally a Rattler to do snake things.

Marcus, 4ss
-Jackalope
Cojo
Adze
Scorpius
Serena
Iggy
Rattler

McMorning, 5ss
-Chihuahua
Rafkin
Rogue Necromancy
Canine Remains
Canine Remains
Flesh Construct
Nurse
Sebastian

For deployment, Marcus has to split his crew.

-JDubtOSnXZ6x8AoeNvc0HQhkGjlKrCXB_uV4AsF

Turn 1 Summary

Marcus stones for cards, McMourning wins Initiative.

The Canine Remains walks, Marcus hands out 4 mutations (please don’t ask me to remember which, Rattler, Cojo, Scorpius, Jackalope), Roars, and Walks. Another Canine farts some poison out, while the Jackalope leaps into battle. Rafkin makes more poison. Iggy walks, Rogue Necromancy walks. Adze Lures the Rogue Necromancy forward, as the Flesh Construct triple walks to back it up. The Rattler is able to get a bite in on the Necromancy and does 2 damage. Scorpius creeps up and misses a The Feeding on the Rogue Necromancy, everything else basically walks around.

BE-A5smQyEDBiSyBXxLPtwLKw0-kAZbQ_0cdaSGl

Turn 2 Summary

Marcus and McMourning both stone for cards. Marcus wins initiative. 

Rattler the charges and kills the Canine Remains. It gets the Reposition trigger, drops a scheme marker, and scoots with ambush. McMourning scoots on up and drops the Scorpius in 2 hits, ignoring armor (gets a Red Joker on damage, Scorpius flips a Black Joker on defense). The good Doctor then hides behind the Necromancy. Marcus upgrades the Adze (wings) and Cojo (Horn), gives himself Teeth and Claws. He pushes up, charges Sebastian for 2 damage and Adversary. He gets Cojo to charge (misses). He then accomplices Cojo to beat on Sebastian for another 8 damage, 4 of which is prevented with soulstones. Cojo gets Shielded because he didn’t move in his activation. Sebastian heals and gets 2 licks in on Marcus for 5 damage and blast onto Cojo (no damage). The Jackalope charges in on the Flesh Construct, does 6 damage over 2 attacks, including a Red Joker flip. He hops on over to engage McMourning and the Rogue Necromancy. Rogue Necromancy does 7 damage to Cojo, but Serena heals Cojo for 2. The Nurse counter heals Sebastian for 2 also! Iggy goes Reckless, charges Sebastian for 2 damage, Burning, and Misery. Most everything else walks along. The Adze drops a scheme marker and uses Firefly to put Burning and 1 damage on the Flesh Construct. Rafkin tosses a flask to poison Marcus and Cojo. The poison does the final point of damage to trigger Assassinate on Marcus.

Marcus: 3VP (Reckoning, Claim Jump, Search the Ruins)
McMourning: 2 VP (Reckoning, Assassinate)

Sorry, forgot to take a photo.

Turn 3 Summary

McMourning stones for cards, Marcus gets initiative.

Marcus kills Sebastian, triggers Pouncing Leap to the Flesh Construct, kills him too. He uses Primal Roar to push back, then attaches Natural Camouflage to heal Cojo and has him charge Rogue Necromancy. He then accomplices Cojo, who lands a total of 4 damage on the Necromancy (and then gains Shielded). McMourning pushes the Rogue Necromancy away, but cannot escape the deadly clutches of the Jackalope. He does Rancid Transplant on Cojo to give him Injured and Poison 6 (4 moved from Necromancy), then kills the silly rabbit once. Rattler schemes, charges Nurse. Chihuahua tries to work over the rabbit, but misses. Adze ambushes, drops a Scheme marker, charges and kills the other Canine Remains. Rafkin charges in and does 3 damage to the Rattler, then moves 3 poison from the Nurse onto it. Serena heals Cojo back to full and removes Poison from him. The Necromancy walks and pops Marcus for 3 damage, Pounces and hits Serena for 3 damage. Iggy goes Reckless, drops a scheme marker, walks, charges the Necromancy. He pops it for Red Joker damage (4+1), puts Burning on it, triggers Misery for another 1 damage, and then would ping it again for 1 Burning damage at the end of the turn, netting 7 damage off of one swing. Not too shabby, Necromancy goes down. The Nurse fails to seduce the Snake, probably good for all our sakes.

Game ends on time.

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Marcus: 6 VP (Reckoning, Claim Jump, Search the Ruins)
McM: 2 VP

Lessons Learned: As with 90% of my games, we called it for time on Turn 3. I’ve been working really hard to laser focus on scheming and getting points, so it is nice to see it reflected in the score, even if it is premature. Seems quite likely my opponent would have gotten Assassinate and at least 1 more Reckoning, I am really not sure if I could have gotten my 3rd Reckoning point or not. He also had Power Ritual, but with the Canine Remains out of the game, that seems difficult for him to score. McMourning seems really solid, but I lost track of what in the world was going on with poison so quickly. Too many tokens!!! :)

The Jackalope really came into his own this game. He charged in to prevent the Flesh Construct from charging poor Cojo, and then further locked up McMourning (and technically the Rogue Necromancy despite the push). He can be really tanky, but requires at least two turns of investment it seems--that gets him up to effective Stat 6 across the board and 12 health (not to mention overkill damage is wasted). I do like to put Teeth and Claws on him for Adversary then try to plink around and trigger it.

Marcus Zootopia Buddy Cop worked quite well too. The idea was he gets Teeth and Claws, charges in, applies Adversary, pushes back, makes another beast charge in, then accomplices over to that other beast. In this case I was working with Cojo, having 11 health, Armor +1, and then charging on Marcus’s activation meant he didn’t need to move on his activation, giving him Shielded +2 as well. But I can also see combinations like Inhuman Reflexes and Horns where you just keep charging across a model for extra extra damage (maybe Cerberus?). I also wanted to play a lot more with the positive flips from Adversary (another reason to include Cojo), but I didn’t manage to get that deep into applying them. Also doing this nearly got Marcus killed, so it is tough to balance if you want Teeth or Wings for defense.

I do feel like I have a lot more efficiencies that I can explore, with multiple Onslaughts, better application of Adversary, Grootslang, and the other Chimera models like Order Initiates, Slate Ridge Mauler, and that lawyer bro. Also models like Hinamatsu were in high consideration for Lure and survivability. I didn't quite get to the the Adze/Iggy combo of Firefly and Misery that I was hoping for, but it is definitely in the back of my mind. There seem to be a lot of buddy combos available within the Neverborn Chimera keyword specifically, which is neat and opens up a lot of exploration potential.

But feeling increasingly better now about Marcus (seriously the learning curve on him has been incredibly steep), I have 3 masters left in Neverborn that I haven’t explored at all in 3rd: 

  • Nekima
  • Zoraida
  • Dreamer 

Any requests?
 

@Kolath

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1 hour ago, thewrathchilde said:

Marcus can't push back with Primal Road; it's a pulse so he isn't affected like he would be from an aura that generates from him. Auras specifically state they can affect the model generating them (P.30) Pulses do not (P.310.

 

@Gaston who was the McM player?

$%#@!!! Always screwing up something. Obviously they need to just change Marcus. ;)

He was new to the area, a former henchman IIRC. I don't know his forum name.

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Changing gears in a new Neverborny direction! First game trying out the Dreamer!

Reckoning

Search the Ruins [x]
Breakthrough [x]
Power Ritual 
Assassinate 
Claim Jump

Dreamer, 5ss
-Lord Chompy Bits
Serena Bowman
Teddy
Doppleganger
Daydream
Coppelius
Iggy

Leveticus, 4ss
-Waif
-Waif
Rusty Alyce
Ashes and Dust
Hodgepodge Emissary
Marlena Webster
Nothing Beast

Deployment was corners, the boxes on the centerline are destructible individually.

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Turn 1 Summary

Levi wins initiative.

Daydream moves up, pulls Teddy, and uses Lucid Dreams. A Hollow Waif walks and focuses. Dreamer uses a Red Joker to summon 2 Alps, hands out Shielding, walks and focuses. The Nothing Beast promptly attacks the buried Alps, doing 3 damage to one. Chompy uses Lucid Dreams and walks. Levi burns a pass token, Coppelius pushes Teddy some more, then walks. Alyce walks and summons a trap, Iggy counter walks! Waif, both Alps, and a pass token all go in short order. Most everything else walks or is boring, Teddy removes a box, Marlena gains a vitality potion from the Emissary.

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Turn 2 Summary

Leveticus and Dreamer stone for cards. Leveticus wins initiative.

Doppleganger Lures Rusty through her own trap; this pops out an Alp who uses his free attack to give Rusty Alyce slow. The Emissary pushes Alyce out of combat, heals her to full, and gives her a Momento. She is then companioned; she shoots and kills the Alp, but misses the shot on Teddy. She makes another trap. Daydream, Waif, Iggy, Waif all wander about. Dreamer walks twice, misses a Twist Reality on Rusty, then pops a Bad Dreams bubble. Nothing Beast does a walk/charge on Coppelius, does 3 damage. Teddy scraps through 2 more boxes. Leveticus pops Teddy for 8 damage. Serena heals Teddy up 4 damage, walks and drops a scheme marker. Ashes and Dust charges Teddy and kills him on the second swing. Chompy charges Alyce to no effect. At some point Coppelius had laid a scheme marker and Leveticus had burned a pass token too

Leveticus: 2 VP (Reckoning, Stake a Claim [Marlena])
Dreamer: 1 VP (Search the Ruins) 

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Turn 3 Summary

Dreamer stones for cards. Leveticus wins initiative.

The Emissary heals Rusty to full, pushes her and drops marker. Rusty activates with companion, shoots Chompy for 4 damage (soulstone prevent 1), misses the next shot. Chompy responds in kind by charging Rusty, popping her for severe damage (3 is prevented) and healing himself 2 damage. Nothing Beast fails to Stutter Time Coppelius, fails his Terror. This pops out an Alp who swings and slows him. Dreamer shoots Ashes and Dust twice, and drops him to 4 health. Ashes heals himself, but fails a terror check on Chompy and heals Chompy. Coppelius rips into The Nothing Beast, 7 damage down to 5 from incorporeal across 2 attacks. Leveticus swaps 4 wounds from a Waif onto the Nothing Beast and Focuses. Serena charges and kills Marlena. Waifs, Alp, and Iggy all have uninteresting activations. Doppleganger drops a scheme marker.

Leveticus: 2 VP
Dreamer: 2 VP (Reckoning)

Sorry, forgot to take a photo.

Turn 4 Summary

Dreamer wins initiative.

Chompy attacks Alyce for 4 damage and heals himself again. Emissary heals Rusty 3, gives Ashes and Dust a pretty bonnet, pushes Rusty and companions her. Rusty shoots Chompy for 5 damage, he prevents 1. Serena charges and puts 4 damage on the Emissary, heals Chompy 3. Leveticus burns a pass token, so Coppelius goes ahead and kills the Nothing Beast. Leveticus is grumpy, so he kills Chompy and the Alp. Ashes fails his charge attacks on the Dreamer, but Iggy puts 4 damage and Burning on the Emissary. A Waif kills Leveticus who pops into her and heals to full. Dreamer fails to damage the Emissary, but Doppleganger charges and kills it. 

Levi: 3 VP (Reckoning)
Dreamer: 3 VP (Reckoning)

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Turn 5 Summary

Leveticus cheats for Initiative. 

Leveticus charges in, kills Iggy and Doppleganger and converts them both into Abominations. Daydream pushes Coppelius, walks to engage Ashes and Dust. An Abomination walks over to Dreamer, who disengages and kills the other Waif. Another Abomination walks, and Serena tries to finish off a damaged Leveticus, but fails. Ashes and Dust disengages to drop a scheme marker. Coppelius walks and schemes to score Breakthrough, but Alyce guns him down in 3 shots.

Leveticus: 5 VP (Reckoning, Search the Ruins)
Dreamer: 3 VP

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Lessons Learned: First time with a new master, so, so very much to unpack. First, complete credit to my opponent, his Turn 5 was a thing of beauty, out playing the hell out of me and crushing any (day)dreams I had of a comeback. I thought I had done a better job preventing scoring with my manipulative models and engaging Ashes and Dust. Turns out that Floral Bonnet is amazingly strong!

I also feel like there was a LOT I could have done better in this game to try to improve my chances of victory:

--Breakthrough was the wrong scheme to pick for corner deployment (the email said Corner, he said Corner, I schemed Flank)
--Dreamer needed to wait until after The Nothing Beast went, and possibly summon an Insidious Madness instead of Alps. That would be much harder to kill and handing out the Distracted candy would have helped survival a ton. 
--On the turn Iggy went in on the Emissary, I forgot about Misery. This would have dropped him to 1 wound and let burning finish him without Doppleganger charging in. In turn, Doppleganger could have then done Search the Ruins instead.
--I forgot I got 2 pass tokens from the Abomination summons, this would have let me delay Coppelius’s run into the deployment zone, and possibly kept him alive versus Rusty.

Lucid Dreams wasn’t super duper hugely helpful, I pulled a 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, and 11 from the deck. Obviously a Stitched would have been terribly helpful here as well. Another thing of interesting note is that Injured comes into play for terrifying duels, something worth considering in the future…..

@Kolath

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