Ghostly Fiends strike again!
Fresh off of last week’s tournament games I was ready for Marquee Models in Harlow. I had won their last event back in November and was setting my sights on winning there for my 3rd time. They always run great events so I was looking forwards to it. To make it better the event pulled 10 players again!
Warband-wise I was using Magore’s Fiends. I’m still on my path to win with every warband but now I’m motivated again with tournament passion!
Magore’s Fiends gained a lot from the latest wave of expansions. Keep Chopping is made for them. You just need to perform 4 or more attack actions in an action phase. Normally it means you need to charge or attack for each of your activations but the Gorefists make this so much easier. Make a reaction attack off an opponent’s failed attack. Amazing.
Giant Slayer was in for VD and fairly easy to score. What Armour? is a no-brainer and I almost put in Get Thee Hence because Zharkus has knockback 1!! I didn’t even know that until I checked the fighter cards. Still his damage of 2 meant he would be killing most expected targets (Chainrasps and Grotz) so I passed.
I also dislike Extreme Flanks especially for aggro warbands so I took Fired Up instead. Faking scoring Extreme Flanks is amazing when your opponent burns all their push cards for the wrong thing.
Commanding Stride was in there so Magore could slide around the board as well as laugh off Transfixing Stare. Haymaker was chosen because this warband lives on dice so you need all the dice you can throw. It along with Mighty Swing were my tech cards. Ghartok or Zharkus inspired with Mighty Swing are horde blenders and get around the instance where Magore or Riptooth inspire and end Mighty Swing because their inspired weapons have different names and thus become different weapons rules wise.
Gory Visage and Trophy Hunter are my Fiends staples. Coupled with Daemonic Resilience and you can stall out your opponent against their high damage fighters. Great Speed and Faneway Crystal are there along with Spectral Wings and Hidden Paths to counter players who sit back so there is no escaping me.
As a side note, I also planned to stack Trophy Hunter with Tome of Offerings for amazing glory gain. Now there’s been a lot of demand for Tome of Offerings to be restricted (or even banned) but the card is way too dice dependant. It’s not like Keys where you’re guaranteed the glory for sitting on objectives. The card certainly gives you a glory mid-game boost but it helps against warbands like Thorns and Cursebreakers who use passive score immediate objectives while you advance up the board.
So with that all out-of-the-way, it’s time for the most important thing *clears throat* MOVEMENT AND POSITIONING. As veteran Magore (and aggro) players will know, it’s all great when your opponent is in charge range. The big issue is players sitting back and starving you while you move up the board. I know because that’s how I beat every Magore player.
This is why I included so many movement and push cards. Even with movement 5 or 4, opponents can still hide safely. Not when you appear from the opposite end of the board or get boosted up to movement 6/7. It can make playing Fiends very stressful if you can’t deal with being starved whether it be by including more objectives to score while you’re simply moving up to movement cards.
Now before we start, welcome the amazing Underworlds combat key of warhammering:
For the first round I was paired up with David. I sighed in relief when he placed down his Ironskull’s Boyz. Now David was very new to the game but had come down to the event for some experience which was perfect as that’s the best way to learn the game. It’s just unfortunate he was facing me with my Fiends.
Winning boards I placed down the Katophrane’s Reliquary and put all my fighters down in the face of the Orruks.
Winning priority, I let David go first as I had Keep Chopping. Gurzag immediately charged into Ghartok rolling a single smash. I rolled a block and responded with a Gorefist to the face which left Gurzag down to 4 wounds. Riptooth then charged in with a crit and 2 supports to inspire himself while pushing Gurzag (now with 2 wounds) away. Bonekutta charged into Ghartok but failed as well. He took a Gorefist to the face but managed to roll. a block. Pushing him out-of-the-way for Magore, my leader ran in and cleaved apart the Orruk leader with 2 smashes scoring me Show of Strength and No Escape. Closing the round I was able to also score Escalation, Keep Chopping (with 6 attacks in activations) and Shinning Example.
I was already quite ahead so put Trophy Hunter and Potion of Rage onto Magore. I put Magore on Guard while Basha charged into Riptooth but failed to roll and fury. Ghartok charged into Bonekutta and missed. The Orruk hit back for 2 damage but he was stuck there thanks to Ghartok being a bloody rock. Using Commanding Stride to push him into range, Magore then attacked after drinking Potion of Rage. Bonekutta was quickly cut down as I only rolled supports but that’s all I needed to score 3 glory with What Armour? Magore then charged to score Change of Tactics.
Phase 3 was rather short as Orruks won priority, charging into Riptooth but missing again. Magore, now with Tome of Offerings, charged Basha and cut him up good for 3 glory. Riptooth charged and rolled a crit against Hakka so thanks to Concealed Weapon he shredded the Orruk. After the blood had settled, I won 20-0 score all my objectives bar Giant Slayer.
Game 2 had me win boards again so layout remained the same. Bonekutta charged into Ghartok using 2 smashes to bring him down to 2 wounds. Ghartok attacked back but his smash was met with a block. Gurzag then rolled in and smashed Ghartok apart. Riptooth then charged into Gurzag, his attacked succeeded with a crit allowing me to score What Armour? The rest of the Orruks moved up while Magore charged into Gurzag, killing him with a single smash and Twist the Knife. Zharkus closed things off by wounding a nearby Basha. My exploits allowed me to score Keep Chopping, Escalation and Fired Up.
Now round 2 was were things got a bit silly. Magore was equipped with Trophy Hunter and Tome of Offerings AND Great Strength. I started off by putting him on guard. Bonkutta charged Zharkus, bringing him down to a single wound. Now with my bait set I played Mighty Swing. Magore charged both the wounded Bonekutta and Hakka. Hakka took 2 smashes and died which scored me Change of Tactics, Show of Strength and Strong Start for 6 glory. I next rolled a single smash against Bonekutta and scored another 3.
Phase 3 was once again won by the Orruks. Basha charged Riptooth then used Brutal But Kunnin’ to move him deep into my board edge. Riptooth (being the only fighter in range) charged but failed to roll any hits. All seemed lost. Until I started off by giving Magore Potion of Rage. Ready for Action moved me 4 hexes then I played Commanding Stride to put him next to Basha. Discard the Potion of rage I rolled my 4 dice and rolled nothing but double supports and furies. There was an awkward silence between the 2 fighters. Then Magore attacked in the next activation and was crit’d back in defence. After all that the game ended on a 20/2 win to me.
David was a great opponent but he said he learned a lot despite the carnage. Even in game 2 he learned not to commit Gurzag too early and was getting more effective with his board control. He was just reaaaally unlucky with dice.
Now I was up against Robbie and his Cursebreakers. He’s a regular London tournament goer so it was good to see him again.
Winning boards again I went with the Katophrane’s Reliquary again.
The Cursebreakers deployed a little far back and I was given priority to go first. As I had to score No Escape, Ghartok Charged into Stormsire and Rastus. My 2 smashes knocked back Stormsire onto an objective adjacent to a lethal hex. Robbie inspired Rastus via Empower and put Deathly Fortitude on Stormsire. He then used Stormsire to cast Abasoth’s withering on Ghartok but rolled 2 crits. Now on 3 wounds, Riptooth charged in. With a single fury the Khorne doggo pushed Stormsire into his doom and scored me Strong Start. Rastus then attacked Ghartok and missed allowing me to react attack but fail. Magore charged in (after inspiring) to wound Rastus down to 1 wound. Rastus then charged Riptooth, leaving my doggo on 2 wounds.
Luckily winning priority, Riptooth charged away into Ammis. Rolling a crit and a fury, she took 3 damage and was pushed into a lethal hex. I then played Daemonic Resilience. Rastus Empowered himself again and Magore went on guard. He charged Ghartok, killing him and then equipped Sudden Growth. Magore charged rollling a support and a smash. Scoring Change of Tactics, I played Potion of Rage and Ready for Action to properly cut him down for What Armour?, Show of Strength and Giant Slayer. Phase 3 was all about that shuffling and it ended 17/5 to me.
Game 2 had me losing boards so I placed the Penitent’s Throne. Normally I use it as a reaction board but I actually wanted the board to be spun around, which is what I got! Having 2 forward starting hexes is better for me than having 1.
Going second, Rastus casted Empower. Ghartok charged into Stormsire. 2 smashes did 2 damage and I pushed him away. Rastus then killed Ghartok thanks to Abasoth’s Withering, Harness the Storm and Great Strength. Riptooth next charged in to kill Stormsire but failed with his dice. Ammis then got Empower off too. Next I drew a power card and Stormsire rolled 2 channels for his Fulmination. Magore, with supports and inspired via Furious Inspiration, charged into Stormsire next to a lethal hex but rolled a fury and a double support. Down 3 glory to nothing I kept my objectives.
Winning priority Magore swung at Stormsire. A smash cleaved through his 2 defence dice giving me What Armour? and Strong Start (finally). Magore was given Sudden Growth and Great Strength. Rastus then charged Riptooth but his single smash was beaten by a dodge. I played Commanding Stride to push Magore next to Rastus. Using Trophy Hunter and Ready for Action, Magore killed Rastus to secure Show of Strength for 3 glory. Ammis charged into Magore and left him on 3 wounds thanks to 3 smashes. Riptooth closed the round by charging in. With a crit, a fury and a support, I used Twist the Knife to finish off the last Stormcast.
Phase 3 was another quick shuffle of cards and it ended on a 16/5 win to me. Once again like in game 1 I was able to cover ground quickly to get my kills backed up by strong dice. Also Trophy Hunter.
It was finale time. Round 3 was against Steven and his Cursebreakers. Being 10 players I had to win this 2-0 to guarantee victory thanks to my huge glory differential. Losing boards I placed the Ruptured Seal.
Luckily for me Steven was inexperienced against Magore’s so kept things wide on but deployed a bit away. Given priority, I put Riptooth on guard. Rastus failed to Empower so Riptooth charged in and brought Rastus down to 2 wounds with 2 fury to score me Change of Tactics. Ammis then tried inspiring but failed. Using Furious Inspiration on Magore, he charged in to kill Rastus and score me What Armour? Stormsire then inspired via Inspiration Strikes and shot Riptooth who defended. After giving him Deathly Fortitude Stormsire shot Riptooth for 2 damage with 2 focuses. I drew a card and Stormsire’s Fulmination did another 2 damage to Riptooth. I played great speed on Ghartok then Ready for Action to put him adjacent to Ammis. With 2 smashes she took 2 damage but hit him back for 2.
Winning priority, I charged Magore out of harms way and into Ammis. With crits she died scoring me Strong Start and Show of Strength boosted by Tome of Offerings. Riptooth was sadly blown apart by Fulmination with a focus and a crit. Now with Sudden Growth, I couldn’t actually kill Stormsire with losing fighters so to preserve glory and stick together. Phase 3 was quick and I gave Magore Sudden Growth as insurance. Scoring the rest of my passives and denying objectives allowed me to win 13/3.
For game 2 I lost boards and was going to go with Arcane Nexus against long boards but thought “Nahhh, he wouldn’t do that” so I played the Shyishian Stardial. He then setup long. Always listen to your gut 😭
For my first 2 activations I drew cards while Ammis and Rastus Inspired. I moved Riptooth 4 hexes away from Ammis. Stormsire charged in doing 2 damage with Fulmination then played Champion’s Fortitude and Ready for Action to kill him. Oh. Still I inspired Magore with Inspiration Strikes and moved up. I was at least able to score 1 glory via Shining Example but I was down 6 glory to 1. I ditched Tome of Offerings to give Magore Great Strength and ditched Keep Chopping to draw into Change of Tactics and Strong Start.
Winning priority, I had a chance! Going first I put Magore on guard and played Daemonic Resilience. Stormsire tried shooting but failed. Seeing chance, I played Mighty Swing then Spectal Wings. Taking flight like a bloody raging phoenix, Magore attacked Ammis AND Stormsire! Ammis took a single smash to the face and rolled a double support which got me Strong Start. Stormsire next got hit by 2 smashes and exploded even with his re-roll which got me Change of Tactics and the newly drawn Show of Strength. 5 glory off of a single charge, GORIOUS. After that janky performance, Magore was equipped with Deathly Fortitude. Rastus charged in doing 2 damage and knocking him back while I moved up Ghartok after inspiring him. Going into the end phase I scored Escalation so we were tied.
Winning priority again, Magore drunk his potion of rage and rolled 4 supports. No What Armour? then… Rastus hit back with Great Strength and Glory Seeker to kill Magore and take the lead. Realising my objectives were now useless I used Hidden Paths to move Ghartok onto my opponent’s top right corner via the objective I placed there. Unable to kill each other, we cycled. I ditched What Armour? to get Master of War. I then realised I had scored 4 objectives and had Superior Tactician in-hand with 1 objective to draw. Feigning that it was over I cycled Giant Slayer to draw Fired Up. I quickly played Faneway Crystal and faked a bad Extreme Flank with Zharkus.
Going to scoring I achieved Fired Up, then Master of War and Superior Tactician to put me on 11. Steven who was on 7 scored 4 glory but I won due to being on an objective! He had Distraction in his hand but didn’t use it as he thought he would win via his glory lead and assumed I was all about killing. Phew. With that we played a 3rd game for fun where I used Arcane Nexus against long boards but then lost as my dice failed to roll any hits. Great games where we both learned a lot.
It was final results time! Me and fellow competitor Rob were tied on glory at scoring 97 each and both being unbeaten. However when they remembered it was glory difference I won with a glory difference of +72 vs +40. All them kills.
Victory! It was very tough near the end but thanks to crits, Trophy Hunter and Mighty Swing I was victorious. I was glad to get these guys done as I dislike playing Fiends. They’re too aggro for my liking even with all the passive objectives I put in. It got really tough when opponents sat back but I was prepared, I just don’t enjoy doing that for nearly every game with Fiends. Remember to check out Marquee Models if you’re in the area or interested in a tournament. They run amazing events and have awesome attendees too.
For those interested, here are the warbands left for me to win with:
Only 1 more Shadespire warband left. Can I win with the last 6 warbands before the final 2 Nightvault ones are released? Will I ever even try to use Eyes of the Nine again? Will I get injured in a tragic Shadeglass Trophy accident involving their shelf collapsing on me? Find out all this and more on the next article of Can You Roll a Crit?