Posts Tagged ‘sr2013’

Today we’ll be taking a look at the Incursion, aka disappearing flags, aka “the flag I want to stay always disappears” scenario.

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This is an “Invade” scenario. Near as I can tell the characteristics of this type of scenario are that the warcasters are intended to be active participants in the game and for that reason dominating is a bit more common than in some of the other scenarios.

This scenario is another standard scenario that you will see quite often at scenarios and seeing 3 flags across the middle of the table will let you start planning your win condition.

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There are no zones in this one, just the flags. Let’s do a quick refresher of what flags are in SR2013.

Flag (40 mm base): All flags are models with the following qualities: Incorporeal, stationary, immune to all game effects. They do not activate and cannot be targeted, damaged, moved, placed, or removed from play.

So, flags are incorporeal models. What that means in a nutshell is that you can move through it and see through it, you just can’t end your movement on top of it. You also can’t target it, which means you can’t scatter an AOE off of it or use a spell like Hellmouth targeting it. You can’t charge it for extra movement.

Okay so we know all the things we CAN’T do to/with it, how about seeing what we can?

Well, we can control a flag by having a model in base to base with it. If the model is a single thing (such as solo, warbeast, warjack, etc) as long as there are no contesting models it is controlled. If the controlling model is a part of a unit it must be at least 50% strong and every model must be within 4″ of the flag. The flag is “contested” if even a single enemy model is within 4″ of the flag unless that model happens to be the enemy warcaster/warlock.

We can also “dominate” a flag by having a warcaster/warlock base to base with the flag with no enemy models within 4″ of it.

That is pretty much it. Now that we have the generic rules for it down, let’s take a look at the conditions specific to Incursion.

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One of the first things we notice is that this scenario does not have the killbox artifice. This means if you want your caster to hug the back table edge all game, you can. You might not WANT to do that though, as the victory condition for this scenario (in addition to caster kill of course) is getting to 5 control points.

How are these control points gained? Well, you get 1 point for controlling a flag and 2 for dominating it. That means in a single turn you can get a max of 3 control points (2 for dominating one flag and 1 for controlling the other). Why only 3 you ask when it should be 4 since there are 3 flags?

Well because we don’t start getting control points until the end of the 2nd player’s second turn (remember that this is the rule with scoring in all SR2013 scenarios) and at the end of the 2nd player’s first turn one of those flags, generated randomly, will disappear.

And that, as they say, is that. The rules are really basic on this one and there is a legitimate scenario victory condition in this one which makes it very popular. This is also one of the scenarios that I recommend for generic games store pickup games. It is easy to set up with no zones required and there is no interaction with them beyond control/dominate unlike the objectives. All you need is 3 40mm (medium sized) bases and you are good to go.

Now we know what we are trying to do, so what is the best way to do it?

Well, this scenario is extremely “live”. This game can actually be won as early as the end of top of turn 3 with one caster getting 2-3 points at the end of round 2 and the remainder at the end of the first player’s activation on turn 3.

The uncertainty as to which flag will disappear means that in general you want to deploy much of your stuff centrally so you can slide left or right as necessary depending on which flag disappears. Fast moving models have an advantage here – I have seen some slower models/units spend 2-3 turns redeploying when one of the flanking flags that they were planning on claiming/contesting disappears.

This scenario is one of the big reasons that fast jam units are so valuable in SR2013. If you can run through the flags and put the back of your models’ bases about 4″ from the flags you can make it difficult for the opponent to contest these flags. You can then dominate or control and be done with the game super fast. Obviously this has it’s risks but there are times that you might be able to get a unit like the Boomhowlers to jam the enemy out of the flags and just walk the game in.

Casters with strong control elements to either their spell list or their feats are really good here – models like Haley2 and Kreuger2 can use telekinesis to push their enemy back and then feat to slow down or negate their ability to get back into control range so be aware of it. I personally have lost on turn3 to a Kreuger2 list by not paying attention and failing to saturate the area around the flags well enough and then got shoved out and jammed.

That isn’t to say that the only way to win this one is with speed and going for that early game win. This scenario can also be won with solid attrition play just grinding out your opponent’s ability to contest it snatching 1 or 2 control points as they get chance.

Some of the more tanky casters are also good at this scenario with the ability to dominate. Butcher1 is good at this as is Terminus. They just hulk out as much as possible and then stand there dominating as they can. Typically they will kill their opponent’s models and only get the dominate on their own turn, but sometimes they can pick up a quick 4 points in rapid succession.

Remember that while you cannot contest with a caster, the tooltip informs us that when multiple warcasters dominate the same flag, only the active one scores. If you are desperate to stop a win and can’t get any other models over there you can at least stop them from winning on your turn. Granted, they will likely win on their own turn if you were doing that move out of desperation, but you can also get a sneaky win that way if you are at 3 points and they were planning on winning on your turn or something. It is edge case, but it is an important one.

My final point on this scenario is that it is a fun one, which is another reason I recommend it for pickup games. It tends to be very dynamic with a lot of strategic movement as well as just outright killing.

Scenario 4, aka Ammunition Run, is another fairly common scenario at tourneys so it pays to spend a bit of practice time with it. Let’s take a look at the this and plan our path to victory.

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This is another Assault Scenario which typically means a mashup in the middle. In fact, there is just a single rectangle zone that is 6″x12″ in the dead center of the table. There are also 3 objectives in this scenario –  a friendly objective to each player which is a bit off on the right flank and near the middle of the table (20″ from deployment table edge) as well as an objective in the middle of the table that is an enemy to both players.

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As the tactical tip so helpfully informs us this “enemy” objective in the zone means that neither player can control the zone until it has been destroyed. Since I brought it up, let’s take a look at the objectives next (all three are the same).

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I made the card big because there is a lot of text on this one and my eyes are old.

Like all objectives in sr2013 they are models on large (50mm) bases. The other generally shared characteristics of objectives, are immobile so it cannot be knocked down or moved, is automatically hit in melee, cannot be engaged nor can it engage, immune to continuous effects, and cannot be damaged or targeted until the 2nd players 2nd turn.  Again, those are not really unique to this scenario, just to all objectives so it is worth remembering.

As an ammo dump it is only fitting that if your caster dominates the objective (pop quiz: how close do we need the caster to be to the objective and how far must enemies be to dominate? *see below) that ranged weapons of friendly models within 2″ of the objective gain +1 RNG. I know that +1″ doesn’t seem like a huge boon but ranges tend to be so short in this game that it can often mean the difference between being in charge range of an enemy or not. You shouldn’t risk yourself going for it, but it can be a nice bonus and is certainly worth considering.

Speaking of risks, we note that this objective has the rule “Explosive”. When the objective is destroyed models within 2″ (the same distance as those who were getting the bonus range) suffer a POW 12 magical damage roll and the Fire continuous effect. For those of you fortunate enough never to have seen the horror of a model set on fire before, let me tell you from first hand experience that it kills casters dead. In a nutshell, you test during the maintenance phase but only after your have dumped your focus to 0 if you are warcaster (you knew that happened, right?) On a 1 or a 2 it goes out, if not you take a pow 12 damage roll. Don’t think you warlocks get off much better than casters – remember you don’t leach fury until your control phase so if your beasts are maxed out you can’t transfer to them and you still have to have a fury on yourself. It is a very high risk proposition and since in this particular scenario you can’t get control points by dominating the friendly objective, unless you really think that 1″ will make the difference in the game, I would suggest you not dominate the objective. Dying from fire in a game you are otherwise winning is very frustrating. You don’t even get control points for dominating the enemy objective so just destroy it (which is how you get the control points).

How hard is it to destroy you may ask? This particular objective is not too hard at all. It is armor 15 with 15 boxes. It will take some effort, but not a ton. Also, this is an objective you really want to destroy with ranged weapons since, with a few exceptions, the longest ranged melee weapons are reach weapons at 2″ which means that they take a pow 12 hit and get set on fire when destroying the objective. It might be worth it to sacrifice a model or two but make sure that decision is intentional, not an “oops, I just killed 5 of my own Iron Fang Pikemen” move.

So, how do we actually get control points and win this one (without fiery death of a caster)? Let’s look at the rules.

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You only get control points based on the objectives being destroyed if they are enemy objectives. The practical application of this is that generally you should try and take out the middle one first. You can always get the far enemy objective later and that gives you a control point that they can’t make up by destroying yours. The exception to this is if their warlock/warcaster (or some other low or medium armor high value target)  is within 2″ of the objective it might be worth it to try and blow it up to set them on fire (assuming they aren’t immune).

The other two ways to get control points, of course, are by either controlling or dominating the zone. Remember you can’t do this while the objective is there, so don’t forget that, but also remember that it is fairly fragile and your opponent might waste an infantry model or two wrecking it and then dominating the zone, so don’t count on it to be your linebacker.

You get 1 control point for controlling the zone and 2 control points for dominating the zone. Remember, the first to 5 control points wins. That means there can be an incredible 4 points gained on a single turn – destroy both enemy objectives and dominate the zone. That 4 point swing could put you up so far that your opponent has to scramble just to not lose immediately.

*Answer to the pop quiz “an objective is dominated if there is a warcaster/warlock within 2″ of an objective that an opponent does not contest (any enemy models within 2” of an objective contest it). But you knew that, of course. Give yourself a gold star.

We are looking at one of the classic sr2013 scenarios today – Close Quarters. Close quarters is a a staple scenario for tournament play and is a great scenario for pickup games against a new opponent. It doesn’t require any zones nor does it have interactable objectives – just two 40mm flags.

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Close Quarters is one of only two scenarios that have neither zones nor objectives. The table setup for this one looks like this:

Scenario3 Deployment

As mentioned in the previous post on the Supply and Demand scenario one of the first things you want to look at when you see a scenario are the scenario win conditions. In a 2 (or more) caster tourney, the win conditions will often inform your choice of caster almost as much as your opponent’s force.

Look for things like hills, walls, forests, and other defensive options within 4″ of a flag (since that is the range to contest). Also you might want to look at the approach to the flags – if you are playing melee heavy with few pathfinder options you might prefer to take the clearer side to get you across the table quicker since you know you aren’t going to have to go much further than the center line for most games. Conversely, if you are a shooting force you might want to look at fire lanes and where you want to end up on turn 2 in order to give you maximum coverage. As always, remember that the player going second will have the first opportunity to score the flags and plan accordingly.

Let’s look at the specific rules for this scenario now:

Scenario3 Rules

Like the previous  scenario this one also has the Kill Box artifice. Basically, this means if you end your turn with your caster completely within 14″ of ANY table edge that your opponent immediately gets 2 Control Points. Sometimes it can be worth it to give up 2 points to save your caster, but make sure if you do that it is a conscious decision and not a game changing accident. It is also worth noting that, unlike CPs gained via control or domination of flags/objectives that Kill Box is only scored once per round.

This scenario uses “flags”. Let’s take a look at what the means in sr2013:

Flag (40 mm base): All flags are models with the following qualities: Incorporeal, stationary, immune to all game effects. They do not activate and cannot be targeted, damaged, moved, placed, or removed from play.

A player controls a flag if he owns one or more models that are not immobile, fleeing, wild, or inert B2B with a flag that an opponent does not contest. There are no additional requirements for solos, warjacks, or warbeasts.

If the model B2B with the flag is a member of a unit, the unit must contain 50% or more of its starting number (rounding up) and all those remaining models must also be within 4 ̋ of the flag. 

So controlling a flag with a full unit can be problematic as the entire group must be within 4″ of the flag AND be at or above 50% of the starting size. Solos and small units are good choices for controlling a flag, but aren’t typically great at clearing out contesting models which still having one in base to base with the flag. Ranged solos are a decent option for controlling once the area is cleared out as they will still be able to influence the game while scoring on a flag. Solos also tend to be kind of quick and you can often get a surprise control by running the solo to claim the flag if it the zone is cleared or just unmanned – keep that in mind as you are moving your solo on the flank – it is worth setting it up for a turn or two down the road. The down side of using a solo for this is that they tend to be much more fragile.

A warbeast or warjack is also a decent idea for controlling an enemy flag since they are usually a bit more resilient, but often your opponent will be able to see this coming and will direct more energy to killing a warbeast or warjack.

To dominate the flag a caster needs to be in base to base with it and no enemy models (other than other casters) within 4″. Since flags are models, another model cannot end their movement on it. This really helps mitigate the threat of assault from non-reach troopers since the number of models that can end up in melee with them is reduced by 40mm worth of space. The flag doesn’t block LOS and is incorporeal so it doesn’t do anything vs. shooting, and it also means that models can move completely through it and still attack you as long as your model doesn’t leave their melee range before they move through it. This is an odd interaction of charging that is worth knowing. Once a charging model has its target in melee in must keep it in melee until the end of the charge. In a nutshell, what that means is since LOS is typically the front arc a model can only move until the middle of their base is at the point furthest from its initial charge. Models always move directly forward on a charge. If there isn’t room to place their base in that location due to the flag the charge is likely a fail.

This scenario is a staple for a reason. It is a lot of fun to play and the combination of Kill Box, the ability to dominate one’s own flag for control points, and the central-ish location of the 2 flags typically mean there will be a big mashup in the middle. This is one of the scenarios that it really pays to think of the long game in. Once you get the number of models down dominating the zone gets pretty powerful and since enemy casters are unable to contest and it is possible to score on both flags getting an actual model advantage is extremely valuable.

As always, thanks for reading, I hope it has been useful, and feel free to add any other tips or corrections to the comments!

 

 

Today in the SR2013 Primer Series we’ll be going over Scenario 2: Supply and Demand.

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You’ll notice that this a Guard Scenario. That doesn’t really mean anything for all practical purposes other than the bucket that the scenario is in.

Usually when you belly up to table the first thing that will stand out to you in the table setup, which is why I have chosen to cover the layout first. You can often get your first hint as to what scenario you are playing by taking a look at what is set up on the table.

In the case of Supply and Demand you will notice (in addition to the terrain) a circular zone and 2 objectives.

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So looking at the table lets us know that we will be able to score control points in three different ways; controlling the zone, dominating the zone, and destroying the enemy objective. In a multi-list environment before you have even seen the specific scenario being played, just taking a look at the table can give you hints for which caster to choose as well as whether you will want to go first or second. Going second gives you the option of choosing table side and while it is common to just choose the side you are at, this is a great opportunity to really look at what the table terrain offers you. Is there a piece of terrain on one side that will give you an opportunity to dominate with your caster from the relative safety of a wall or hill? Are there any LOS issues or places you can hide a solo completely yet still impact the game by digging in and contesting the zone? Are there any choke points that will affect your ability to bring your forces to bear?

A single zone is often more difficult to get control points out of than multiple zones and this is especially true with the large circular zone. It won’t tell you which to go for, but it can help inform your choices. It can also give you a bit of insight into how your opponent will want to win.

Now that we have taken in the table layout, let’s take a look at the special rules for Supply and Demand.

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The first thing we notice in the rule box is that this scenario has the Kill Box artifice. What this means is that if, starting at the end of the first player’s second turn, your caster is completely within 14″ of any table edge your opponent immediately scores 2 control points. Kill box combined with the single circular zone typically means that there will be quite a scrum near the middle of the table. The fact that your caster must be within 10″ of the center of the table also means that you must usually take additional precautions to protect your caster.

The active ways to get control points are to control the zone (1), dominate the zone (2), destroy the enemy objective (1), or dominate the enemy objective (2).

Let’s review the specific requirements:

The first player to get to at least 5 control points wins the game. To control a zone we need to have at least one model in the zone with no enemy non-caster models. Additionally, if that model is part of a unit it must be at least 50% in strength and all of the models must be in that zone.

To dominate the zone the caster must be in the zone with no enemy non-caster models.

Destroying an objective is fairly straight forward – starting with the second players second turn you can attack the objective like any other model. A card is included with the scenario because the objectives are slightly different in each one. The one below is the stat card for the Supply and Demand objective, (aka Supply Cache).

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The Supply Cache is armor 15 with 15 wounds making it the easiest to destroy. A warcaster dominating this objective (by being within 2″ with no enemy models within 2″) can have a warjack within 2″ charge or run for free. Of interesting note, you can dominate an objective starting on turn 1.

This objective also has a special rule with doesn’t allow a caster to dominate the zone if the enemy supply cache is in their control area which means you are probably going to want to destroy the enemy one. While there is the opportunity to score 2 control points by dominating the enemy objective this is unlikely unless you have a caster with a fairly crazy movement range and/or are willing to run to it – this will likely put you behind enemy lines but if you have a chance and are 2 control points from winning, it is worth remembering.

Conversely, if you think your opponent might try and pull this it can be worthwhile to destroy your own objective. Please note that this will give your opponent 1 control point, but if you feel that they can dominate that objective it might be better to give up that one control point than two.

In general with this scenario you can expect mass casualties. The combination of a single central zone, kill box, and single objective per player means that both players will be concentrating their forces and typically you are going to have to just grind out the win on scenario. It also means that there is a higher than average danger of your caster being threatened by an assassination. This also means if you have an assassination caster you might see some good opportunities.

It can be possible to “jam” your opponent out of the zone with particularly fast or possibly resilient pieces to score an early control point or two so be aware that is a possibility.

This is a good scenario for those  casters who like to move up and get stuff done in person anyway. Good candidates are the brick casters like Xerxis or Butcher or the ranged assassins like Ravyn or Lylyth2. Finally, since it is a single zone, some of the control casters can bounce enemy models out of the zone and win fairly quickly with a 6 point control point swing over 3 player turns which gives enough to win. Magnus2 and Kreuger2 both have feats to watch out for.

Remember that control points are tallied on each players turn and that both players can earn those points so if you can dominate the zone your opponent absolutely MUST either get a model into the zone at any cost (possibly even running and sacrificing an otherwise active piece’s activation opportunity).

Thanks for taking the time to read this and If you have any questions, tips, or want to point out something I screwed up please do!