Monday, 22 December 2014

Looking in all the wrong places

So after all my failed efforts to try and make Xerxis2 work with a stable of heavy warbeasts, I feel I should discuss the game I had the very next day with Xerxis 1. Last Wednesday I visited Greg out in the scenic Waitakere ranges, and dropped a pXerxis troop heavy list against a combined arms eThagrosh list.

Along with the need to practice X in tier, I've been playing around with a bunch of different lists to get the feel of the guy. I had largely avoided playing him, the reasons of which I'll get into soon, but for this game I decided to try a list I had been sitting on for a wee while:

Tyrant Xerxis 
- Aptimus Marketh
- Basilisk Krea
- Basilisk Drake 
Paingiver Task Master 
Orin Midwinter, Rogue Inquisitor
Hakaar the Destroyer
Max Immortals 
Max Gatorman Posse
Max Cataphract Cetrati 
Max Nihilators

The idea is to get as much work out of Xerxis' feat and Fury as I could, while still holding onto a fair amount of beef. The beast package is just for a bit of versatility, and potentially chase the dream of one-rounding a gargossal with a 4pt light beast, but otherwise they largely operate as X's fury battery.

Greg's eThags list included 2 Scytheans, Shredder, Seraph, Raek, Succubus, Spawning Vessel, Max Legionnaires and UA, other misc support. I had heard of how versions of eThags had been tearing up around the place, with a powerful beast package and a core of Legionnaires to act as a stumbling block.

The game was an interesting one with the both of us feeling our respective casters out. My Nihilators acted as a jam, that Greg very deftly unstuck himself from. He was also looking for opportunities for Scourges, where he managed to arc one over a group of 6 Immortals, thus effectively neutering any vengeance tricks. I attempted to catch Greg unawares by pushing Orin up to use Null Magic and prevent Manifest Destiny being used. I didn't push him forward enough  unfortunately.

After eating Greg's alpha however, came the Xerxis counter punch. Holy crap, it was nuts. First Orin made up for dawdling by zapping a Spell Martyr and electro-leaping on to both Greg's Swamp Gobbers and tickling his Shredder. then X feated and combo-smited a Scythean into its sister.


Two gators with Fury happily chowed on one Scythean, and the Cetrati finished off the other. Hakaar schmacked the Raek to pieces, and even Marketh had the chance to be a melee beast, essentially being a MAT 6, P+S 11 weapon master with 4 souls. What a boss.

There wasn't too much Greg could do from there, he had a go dropping another Scourge on my Cetrati to knock them down and clear room to try and get the drop on Xerxis after getting slip-streamed forward. Unfortunately he didn't have distance and we called it after he failed his charge.

Post-game discussion included talk of how Greg felt it wasn't a great match up due to having all my infantry to deal with. Just like my game against his eMorvhanna list, he wasn't able to clear enough infantry to get enough of an advantage especially after I can hit him back as hard as I did. Beyond that I want to make the point of how good it feels to use Xerxis after the last two games I have played with him (ell, truthfully it'd be the last three games, the first being against 3Goreshade + Kraken, where Molik Karn was free to run rampant all over the show).

Here I have a case of a Warlock that I feel is easy to build lists for, and play in games. Yet I was reluctant to use him initially. A big part of this was when I listened to the opinion of a friend who said that he wouldn't want to play Xerxis because of his bricky style, and subsequent predictability. But I've found Xerxis to be way more dynamic than I first gave him credit for; Martial Discipline is MASSIVE for him, giving him a flexibility I've never experienced in the game before. I have another situation where my play has been influenced by the opinions of others to the point where I was essentially fighting myself. Again, I am not saying their opinions are not valid, just that I took them too literally for myself. I sure as shit am going to play a whole heap more with pXerxis.

In the search of the lists and Warlocks that I work with the best, I may have been looking in all the wrong places.

I'm also in the process of scrapping a bunch of lists and rebuilding them from scratch, with some discussions that I've had with others in mind. I wanted to have secured my second list for Valleycon sooner than this, but there's a couple more lists I want to test before I make that call. Hopefully I'm not changing my mind right up till the week of the event. I got a heap of shit to get painted :/
my dry brushing needs work

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