Thursday, 9 July 2015

ADR in action; expectations, assumptions, cold ruthless reality at Wolfcry

Another post, another rundown of my attendance at a local event: the third incarnation of a thing called Wolfcry.

Wolfcry seems to also be a pretty terrible looking metal band
Well, terrible as in they look like they'd sound terrible. They may be quite attractive guys, I can't tell past all the photoshopped smoke.

The Warmachine event there was run by Big Daddy-o Daryl Painter, and hosted a field of 25 players. It was also the first chance many Auckland players got to try out the Masters format and use ADR. Checking out Season 2 of the Skorne ADR roster I was all-in on eXerxis, feeling I had a solid grip on how to use him. The rest of the roster looked solid too, with my eye on Rasheth or Makeda as an off-list. Discussion with Adam Oakson, who plays Skorne way better than I do, involved agreeing eXerxis as a main-list, but needing a Cryx-drop. His initial ideas were to roll with pMakeda, and leverage off yo-yoing out Molik and Rhadiem across the board to scalpel out key Cryx pieces, using the feat to get an attrition advantage.

I think since then Adam has decided to go other routes, finding his feet with Xerxis and multiple Drakes, but exploring a different off list. Meanwhile, I was feeling quite smug with my own Xerxis list, and had cobbled together a Makeda list that I was practicing with and enjoying a fair deal. But while I had great fun playing it I kept losing my games, often misplacing Makeda and leaving her far too exposed on little camp. But seriously, why have I not used the 22" Rhadiem bullet with sprint before? That shit RID-DICK 8===D 

Come the weekend I got a chance to flex my muscles, and boy did things not go as planned. I dropped eXerxis into 4 of my 7 games, and face-planted three times. Pitching him against Butcher3, and subbing out my triple Brutes for triple Drakes, I quickly realised I had no idea what I was doing with the list having not practiced it with the specialist substitutions. The best play I had was creating a gap for a Drake to get the drop on pAlexia with a cheeky spray at the top of 2. Against eVyros, I made a sloppy attempt at an alpha, and could not recover from the counter attack. The third loss was against a very well played pDoomy list that was out of tier, using double Warders instead of massed Runeshapers. I tried to bank off setting up a variety of decent threat vectors, then lost all semblance of control when Dave Cameron dominated on the bottom of two rampaging my contesting Brute out of the zone. 

Who's got the most beef? Dave's got the most beef. He's just way too beefy. So much meat

The one game that X2 won was against Graeme Watts' eHayley list, getting a decent alpha that messed up his jacks, and ending the game slinging Xerxis himself into eHayley and one-shotting her.

On the flipside, every game I used pMakeda was like 

I know there are several other factors to consider, but I'd like to think I figured her game and my list out sufficiently in the losses leading up to the event. I think part of that is figuring out when to leverage her feat, usually around turn two when I can threaten and position appropriately, and also when swapping savagery and d-ward is important, particularly on the Keltarii. I also got pretty damn lucky with dice too, with my opponent's rolls abandoning them at key moments. But all that aside, the games were great fun for myself (and I hope my opponents). After the weekend, I got a 4-3 win ratio, and placed 10 out of 25. 

Its meant I've walked away from the whole event with a very much reversed opinion of my lists; Xerxis = bad, Makeda = pure gold. But there's also the whole factor of ADR in all this, and what it meant for my games. Which I am very ambivalent about now. Six of my seven games few changes occurred for my lists, with minimal swaps here and there. The Makeda list saw no changes whatsoever in her three games; but then, I keep forgetting having the sideboard in these cases meant my opponent may have had to consider what I could sub in and out. Makeda was clearly my Cryx drop, and Mike Thorn my one Cryx opponent, accurately spotted that was the list I would drop against him. He did check and see I had a Cyclops Shaman to cope with upkeeps in both  my sideboards, but whether this was the deciding factor for him to use Gaspy3 instead of Body & Soul I'm unsure of.

Admittedly, I'm a bit dark on ADR right now. Initially I was hopeful it would give me the leverage I needed to make Skorne lists dynamic and competitive. However, I didn't feel it gave me any real advantage, which probably says nothing about the format, but more about me as a player and how I need more practice; particularly as the game where my army did change significantly meant I had a list I was unfamiliar with, playing into a powerful caster I had little experience against anyways. Playing with the sideboard became more a case of practicing with different units, where the experience of the event means I will probably try to slip in two feralgheists with the lists I run with multiple Cyclops Brutes. But overall I'll leave ADR for now because I don't feel it gives me the advantages it may yield, at this point of my playing ability. The concept behind ADR still appeals to me, but I am probably a bad fit for it.

Or I need to sing more Bubba Sparxx. The only games I lost were the ones I stopped yodeling this
It'll be like Age of Sigmar


  1. No song so perfectly encapsulates your fascination with playing skorne as well as this.

    1. Skorne are pretty much the shitty nu-metal outcasts of yester-year.

  2. my eyes/brain/ears/will to live.