It’s clash time at UKGE 2019!
I’m back with another Grand Clash review. This time I was at UK Game Expo 2019 again. Last year I had placed 5th so was interested to see how I would do again now. Going into the event there were 114 tickets sold so it was going to bigger than last year’s 80ish players. For warbands I would be using Thunkdrik’s Profiteers. Nothing had changed since I used them 3 weeks ago at Warhammer Fest although I had not played them since then. That was my own choice however as I’ve been focusing on winning with every warband over Grand Clash practice. Still I was confident in my usage of the Profiteers, it was going to be a fun event!
Playstyle: Flex (Aggro and control)
The name of the game is getting the warband inspired by the end of action phase 1. I can also score the whole deck in basically 1 action phase too. Thundrik’s Profiteers rely on a really strong and fast objective deck otherwise the gameplan kinda falls apart.
For score immediately objectives I have: What Armour? (Lund and promoted Thundrik), Get Thee Hence (Ironhail), Death From Afar, Seeking Advancement, The Bigger they Are (Ironhail, Alensen, melee Thundrik and Drakkskewer’s amazing pistol), Calculated Risk, (boom) Headshot and then the restricted Change of Tactics. I only have 3 objectives related to kill which can all be scored at once. The rest require me just being able to attack my opponent, not kill. Change of Tactics and Calculated Risk are guaranteed glory that give you 2 inspired fighters off the bat.
Next I have 4 end phase objectives. Live by the Code is what makes the deck work really. 1 glory you will always get. Yes you can’t discard objectives during the action phase then end phase but you automatically get 1 glory. Meaning I can sit back and draw cards or do whatever I want really. Helps so much in the mirror and against aggro players. Keep Them Guessing is basically always 2 glory. With the fact fighter caed reactions count as actions it means I can effectively use Thundrik and do 3 charges, an attack and then move via a ploy to score it. Silly. But combines with Live by the Code to let met stall for a turn. Combination Strike is a win more card but generally scoring 2 objectives during the action phase is easy. Finally Superior Tactician is the end game.
With Thundrik’s Profiteers my deckbuilding has evolved. The plan is being able to score this deck without needing to discard any objectives and being able to score it in a single round for surprise comebacks or forcing dominating positions. Because of this I looked at what my worst hand was. It is Superior Tactician, Combination Strike and Live by the Code. Remember you can’t mulligan this as it reduces your deck by 6 glory which means you might as well as concede at that point. You can either sit back and get 1 glory from Live by the Code or spend an activation to ditch it into a score immediate objective or Keep Them Guessing. Either option is fine and depends on the matchup.
For gambits Seek the Skyvessel is so important. Helps with Keep Them Guessing, moving after charging or using Hidden Paths, scoring Calculated Risk during a power step to setup a next activation kill. Just really strong. Toxic Gasses is another favourite of mine. Be pushes 2 hexes or take 1 damage, all with unlimited range! Distraction helps messing with objectives and sets up kills for Death From Afar. Fuelled By Fury is there because Haymaker has too huge a downside and I pump out a lot of dice on average anyway. Rebound keeps me alive. Stand and Shoot is a free attack that helps score Keep Them Guessing and combines with Duellist’s Speed to make a pseudo Quick Thinker. Hidden Paths is just amazing too by synergising with Keep Them Guessing and allowing sneak attacks. Ready for Action because. Trap and Pit Trap are the last of my restricted cards. They allow me to kill 4 wound fighters easily and helps score Seeking Advancement.
Ancestral Might is there for Drakkskewer. Gives me reliable 4 damage while he is inspired. Rapid Reload is there for Ironhail as it allows him to attack 3 times in a row once per game withe Ready for Action. Also helps with Keep Them Guessing. Archer’s Focus is basically Awakened Weapon. Challenge Seeker goes on Ironhail but helps in the Mollog matchup too. Faneway Crystal is for mobility and surprise attacks. Fighter’s Ferocity is mainly for Ironghail but I just love crits. Gloryseeker is ranged Great Strength pretty much. Tome of Offerings is an auto include. Duellist’s Speed is broken with Stand and Shoot but still a good upgrade in general. Potion of Rage helps with Headshot and getting a needed attack off.
Captain’s Log, Combatical:
Game 1 would be against Ylthari’s Guardians played by Jacob. I really didn’t want to play against Guardians or Mollog but such is fate. Winning the roll-off, Jacob placed the Penitent’s Throne while I set the Arcane Nexus in long configuration. I did this as everyone runs Calculated Risk and thus this forces the Guardians player near to me. I also effectively neuter their speed too.
I had Keep Them Guessing, What Armour and Calculated Risk in-hand. Going first I put Thundrik on guard then used his reaction to make everything lethal (2 actions). Ahnslaine charged through a lethal hex and scored Calculated Risk. She then attacked Lund but rolled double fury. Passing, I played Seek the Sky Vessel (1 action) to move Alensen through a lethal hex and scored Calculated Risk to then promote Lund while drawing into Combination Strike. I then attacked with Lund rolling 2 smashes to kill Ahnslaine scoring What Armour then drawing Live by the Code and promoting Drakkskewer. Gallanghan moved onto objective 2. Now with Keep Them Guessing scored, I charged Gallanghan with Drakkskewer byt missed. Skhathael moved onto objective 1. I played Distraction. Going into the end phase I scored Keep Them Guessing, Combination Strike and Live by the Code putting me on 8 glory to my opponent’s 1.
Jacob won priority and charged with Skhathael into Lund through a lethal hex. I reacted with Stand and Shoot, rolling a crit to score Headshot then kill him due to being inspired. Next I put Ironhail on guard. Jacob used Hidden Paths and put Gallanghan in between Alensen and Thundruk. He then killed Alensen with a crit and a smash. With Rapid Reload Ironhail charged Gallanghan. The first volley missed but I scored Change of Tactics. I then attacked again rolling 2 crits and a fury, taking 1 damage in return but driving back Gallanghan 2 hexes to score me Get Thee Hence. Jacob drew a card while Thundrik charged in with Archer’s Focus and Glorseeker. With 2 smashes Gallanghan died to score me Death From Afar. Jacob drew another card while I moved up Drakkskewer.
Phase 3 had Drakkskewer then charged and kill Ylthari with 2 crits. We cycled cards and the game ended 18/3 to me.
Game 2 had me win the board roll-off again so boards remained the same although Jacob put an objective in no man’s land this time.
Going first, Drakkskewer charged Gallanghan but rolled double fury. Jacob went first and put Gallanghan on guard. I then ditched Death From Afar as I wouldn’t be able to kill anyone now. Then I drew Seeking Advancement. Gallanghan charged Thundrik but my block cancelled out his smash although he did score Change of Tactics. Thundrik shot back for 1 damage then made everything around him lethal. Skhathael then had Healing Potion played to inspire him then gave him Potion of Rage so I used Distraction to push him onto objective 1 and out of charge range. He then moved Ylthari up. I played Seek the Skyvessel to move Lund in range of Gallanghan. I attacked rolling a single support to go through and score What Armour? to promote Lund. Ahnslaine then charged up but missed. Phase 1 ended with only me scoring Keep Them Guessing to promote Drakkskewer.
Winning priority, Lund with Gloryseeker shot and killed Gallanghan to score Seeking Advancement then promote Thundrik. Skhathael charged Drakkskewer with 4 dice and rolled a single smash so did only 2 damage. Lund shot the Sylvaneth warrior rolling a crit and a smash to score Headshot. I then drove him back and played Pit Trap to kill him. Ylthari charged through a lethal hex to score Calculated Risk but her Reaping was defended with a successful block. Drakkskewer charged with Potion of Rage. Thanks to 3 smashes, Ylthari was dead.
In phase 3 Drakkskewer charged Ahnslaine but she rolled a crit. She then moved as far away as possible. Unable to catch her we cycled cards. I had only scored 5 objectives in the end phase so I was short 1 of Superior Tactician. Still I ended up winning 8/2.
Guardians again. This time against my friend and regular opponent Martin. Losing the roll-off, I set the Arcane Nexus while Martin placed the Penitent’s Throne in diagonal configuration.
Going first Martin moved Ahnslaine through a legal hex to score Calculated Risk. I did the same with Alensen and promoted Lund. He then put Gallanghan on guard. I did the same with Thundrik and made all the hexes around him lethal. Gallanghan charged Drakkskewer but his smash was met with my block although he did score Change off Tactics. Lund simply shot him doing 2 damage with a smash and scoring What Armour? then promoting Drakkskewer. Ylthari then charged but failed to cast. Lund shot again at Gallanghan but he rolled a crit so I took 1 damage. I then went on to score Keep Them Guessing.
Phase 2 had me win priority. Lund shot at Gallanghan again with 2 smashes and killed him to score Seeking Advancement. Next we continued to try and kill each other but all our attacks and spells failed. Phase 3 had a similar effect. We were able to wound each other but no kills. Going into a tense end phase I was once again only on 5 objectives but managed to beat Martin by 1 glory to win 9/8.
Game 2 had me lose the board roll again. Boards remained the same but Martin set them slightly less diagonal.
Being made to go first I moved Alensen through a lethal hex and scored Calculated Risk to promote Lund. Gallanghan then went on guard. I then put Lund on guard. Gallnghan then charged Lund but missed although once again he scored Change of Tactics. Lund rolled a smash doing 2 damage to Gallanghan and driving him back. Ahnslaine then moved onto objective 4 through a lethal hex, scoring What Armour? Lund charged Gallanghan but missed. Ylthari charged up at Drakkskewer but missed. I once again scored Keep Them Guessing and promoted Thundrik.
Phase 2 had Gallanghan charge Lund, doing 2 damage with 2 smashes. Lund charged Gallanghan but missed. Ylthari shot Drakksekwer with 2 focuses doing 1 damage then proceeded to kill him with Sphere of Aqshy then Pangs of the Great Lack. I played Seek the Skyvessel and moved Thundrik in range of Gallanghan. I attacked, rolling 2 smashes but was met with a crit in return. Ahnsliane moved through a lethal hex to score Calculated Risk. Thundrik attacked Gallanghan again who rolled another crit. Skhathael then charged my leader with a single smash that beat my 2 defence dice leaving him on 1 wound.
Winning priority for phase 3 Thundrik attacked Gallanghan again rolling a smash and a crit. Success! Gallanghan then rolled 2 crits and killed my leader. Sigh. He then charged Lund but missed. Lund shot back and killed Gallanghan with 2 smashes to score What Armour? and Seeking Advancement. He was then blasted apart by magic. I tried to keep up but Gallanghan’s endless crits meant I lost 11/14.
Game 3 had me win boards again but this time I set them full on wide configuration.
Going first, Martin put Gallanghan on guard and I did the same with Lund. Gallanghan then moved up into the hex right of the 2 blocked hexes. Lund shot but missed. Ahnslaine then moved through a lethal hex to score Calculated Risk. Lund shot Gallanghan again to score What Armour and then Headshot thanks to rolling a single crit to hit, promoting first Ironhail then Lund. Ylthari, after damaging Drakkskewer with Pangs of the Great Lack, shot him with a crit to inspire then killed him with Sphere of Aqshy. Equipped with Rapid Reload, Ironhail charged Ahnslaine. I rolled 3 fury to drive her back 2 hexes then killed her with Pit Trap to score Get Thee Hence. Skhathael then moved up and Lund proceeded to shoot him down to 1 wound via a single smash.
Going first, Gallanghan charged into Lund but rolled only supports. Lund shot back with a crit and a smash doing 3 damage thanks to Gloryseeker and killing Gallanghan to score Seeking Advancement. Skhathael then charged in but his single smash was deflected by a block from Lund. Ironhail charged backwards and shot Skhathael, rolling multiple crits to kill him scoring Death From Afar and The Bigger They Are. Ylthari charged but missed. Thundrik moved up then did his reaction. Martin drew a card. I then played Seek the Skyvessel to move Alensen through a lethal hex and score Calculated Risk while also moving Thundrik up. Putting Thundrik on guard, I then went on to score Keep Them Guessing.
For phase 3 I put Thundrik on guard. Ylthari shot Lund but missed. Thundrik charged. With a crit and a smash Ytlhari took 2 damage then was killed with Trap to score me Change of Tactics. After cycling cards the game ended in an 18/4 win to me.
Next round saw me pair off against Jamie Giblin from Katophrane Relic and his Profiteers. I had a feeling we would play due to the predictable pairing system at a Grand Clash. We had last played each other at Warhammer Fest in 2018 where my Skaven proved triumphant in the mirror so it would be interesting to see how I’d do now. It was a shame we were paired together but I guess I’m just not allowed to play new opponents at Grand Clashes 😂😭
Winning the roll-off Jamie placed the Arcane Nexus so I set the Shattered Refractor in diagonal configuration.
Letting Jamie go first, he put Drakkskewer on guard. I drew a card. He then charged Ironhail, killing him with a single smash and scoring Change of Tactics as I failed to dodge. He then played Illusory Fighter to bring Drakkskewer back. I drew another power card. Jamie moved Alensen through a lethal hex to score Calculated Risk and promoted Thundrik. I then played Fueled by Fury. Drakkskewer charged Alensen and attacked with his pistol. I rolled 2 fury after re-rolls. Jamie failed his dodge roll and I scored Death From Afar along with The Bigger They Are, promoting Thundrik and Lund. Jamie’s Lund then charged forwards but missed. I played Hidden Paths playing Thundrik right of objective 1. He then shot Ironhail, killing him with 2 smashes to score What Armour? and then used his reaction to make all adjacent hexes lethal. In the end phase I went on to score Keep Them Guessing and Live by the Code thanks to drawing into them putting me on 8 glory with the warband inspired.
Going first I ditched Get Thee Hence. Jamie’s Drakkskewer attacked mine but I failed to block. I attacked back, knocking his down to 1 wound. His Drakkskewer then charged mine, killing him. I moved Alensen through a lethal hex to score Calculated Risk. His Thundrik then charged and killed mine. Lund shot the enemy leader but missed. Jamie drew a card while I missed then did the same again. Going into the end phase I scored nothing but gave my leader Faneway Crystal while Jamie put Hero’s Mantle on Thundrik and was now ahead in glory.
Going first I shot Lund into Thundrik but missed again. I then played Seek the Skyvessel to move him behind the pyramid blocked hex so that Thundrik had to charge me. Jamie charged his leader onto objective 5 but rolled supports. I had a plan. I drew a card. Jamie did the same. I then put Thundrik on guard. Jamie drew a card. I equipped Thundri with Archer’s Focus, no response. I then played Distraction to push his leader off of objective 5 and next to Lund. No response. Thundrik charged and rolled a support with a crit. I scored Headshot and Change of Tactics then played Trap and Pit Trap to leave the enemy Thundrik on 1 wound as he had Ancestral Fortitude. I then equipped Thundrik with Potion of Rage, reacting with Ready for Action I rolled 3 smashes. No crits meant he died which scored me Seeking Advancement. In the end phase I scored Combination Strike and Superior Tactician to win 16/11.
Game 2 had me win boards. This time we both played the Arcane Nexus and I set them wide.
Jamie went first and Alensen through a lethal hex to score Calculated Risk, promoting his leader. I moved Alensen through a lethal hex and scored Calculated Risk to promote Lund. Jamie charged Drakkskewer into Iornhail but missed. I used Seek the Skyvessel to move my Lund away from the lethal hex and move my Alensen in range. I played Fueled by Fury. Empowered by the rage of red-shirts everywhere, my Alensen rolled double crits naturally to score Headshot and The Bigger They Are while killing the opposing Alensen. Jamie then killed him with his leader. I then put Ironhail on guard and charged after Jamie drew a card. Ironhail charged enemy Lund. With 3 fury I drove him back to score Get The Hence and Change of Tactics. In the end phase I score Live by the Code, Keep Them Guessing and Combination Strike which put me on 10 glory to 4 with 7 objectives scored.
Going first I charged Drakkskewer into Thundrik doing 3 damage to him. I equipped Potion of Rage and reacted with Ready for Action to kill him. Jamie then equipped Potion of Grace to Drakkskewer then used Hidden Paths to place him away and remove the move token. Then moved Drakkskewer to score Longstrider. I proceed to charge but miss with Lund. In the end phase I scored nothing.
Going first I shot Lund into enemy Lund and killed him with Trap to score What Armour? I managed to score Get The Hence with Ironhail. I was playing pretty lax because I had Superior Tactician guaranteed and was still ahead. In the end phase I lost as Jamie scored Escalation, Alone in the Darkness and Victory After Victory to put him on 21 to my 18. Complacency had cost me the game.
Game had me lose boards. I set the Arcane Nexus while Jamie set the Amber Catacomb in diagonal configuration.
Going into the final game I was now determined not to fail again. Jamie wanted me to come to him so I was going to sit back and deny Alone in the Darkness as as his passive objectives depended on momentum while I had Live by the Code. He ditched Distraction in his opening hand which helped too.
Going first Jamie put Drakkskewer on guard. I moved Alensen through a lethal hex to score Change of Tactics, promoting Lund. He then played Toxic Gases on Alensen, so I chose to let him be pushed into the lethal hex and die. His Drakkskewer charged mine but missed although did score Calculated Risk. My Lund shot and killed Alensen with 2 smashes after playing Distraction so that he was in range to score Death From Afar and What Armour? Jamie’s Lund charged mine and I failed the defence roll. I decided to play Rebound to stop a potential What Armour? and rolled a dodge. I charged Drakkskewer into enemy Lund and killed him with a smash. Playing Seek the Syvkessel I moved Ironhail next to Lund then moved Thundrik through a lethal hex behind Ironhail so that they were all in a diagonal line. Jamie then played Hidden Paths to place Ironhail in my bottom left corner to shoot my Ironhail out of position but realised I could just move Lund then kill his trapped and uninspired fighter. I let him take it back then he drew a card. I put Rapid Reload on Ironhail and shot into enemy Drakkskewer. I drove him back with the first volley and scored Get The Hence. In the end phase I scored Live by the Code with Combination Strike while Jamie just got Escalation.
Jamie went first and charged his Drakkskewer into mine but missed. I then played Hidden Paths and put my Drakkskewer between his Ironhail and Thundrik. Jamie played Hidden Paths to place Ironhail at the bottom left of the pyramid blocked hex (putting him out of the game which was what I wanted), then played Seek the Skyvessel to move his leader to be 3 hexes away from Drakkskewer. I put Lund on Guard. Jamie shot my Drakkskewer but missed. My Lund then charged and killed the other Drakkskewer to score Seeking Advancement and Change of Tactics. Jamie finally shot and killed my Drakkskewer. I then moved Thundrik 1 hex so he was still adjacent to my Ironhail, followed by the use of his reaction. Then we both drew cards and I scored Keep Them Guessing.
For phase 3 I just stood still and drew a card. Jamie then ditched Alone in the Darkness. I drew another card. Heethen played Spectral Wings and charged but missed. Thundrik then proceeded to shoot his double to death. After scoring Superior Tactician, the game ended 18/11 to me.
Mollog. Not only that but he was being played by Paul who I had previously beaten in round 4 at the Tabletop Scotland Grand Clash back in August last year. Anyway it turns out Paul was the top player currently while I was ranked bottom of winners but the only remaining undefeated Profiteers player. I was unaware of both facts.
I lost boards so placed the Arcane Nexus while Paul set the Shattered Refractor in wide configuration.
Going first I moved Alensen through a lethal hex and scored Calculated Risk to promote Drakkskewer. Paul then played Inspiration Strikes, charged Mollog and missed. Drakkskewer, equipped with Ancestral Might charged back with 2 smashes. He did 4 damage then drove Mollog into a lethal hex and played Trap. Mollog charged and killed Lund scoring Longstrider. Normal Ironhail charged and rolled a crit with 2 fury. Mollog took 1 damage and died scoring me Headshot, The Bigger They Are and Death From Afar. I scored Combination Strike in the end phase.
For phases 2 and 3 Paul cycled cards while I wiped out the warband and scored 18 glory to Paul’s 4.
I won boards for game 2. Boards remained the same but I flipped the Shattered Reactor around.
I started off by scoring Calculated Risk with Alensen, promoting Drakkskewer. Spiteshroom then scored Calculated Risk. I put Drakkskewer on guard. He then drew a card and gave Mollog Tome of Offerings. I used Hidden Paths on Ironhail but then he used Commanding Stride on Mollog to push him 2 hexes away. I attacked with Ironhail and he reacted with Aggressive Defence so I could not drive him back then he killed Ironhail. He then played Light Armour to kill Lund.
In phase 2 he played Haymaker with Great Strength to kill Thundrik. I did 4 damage back with Drakkskewer and left him on 1 wound. He then killed Drakkskewer. Alensen shot Mollog but his Soul Trap saved him so I pushed him back into the lethal hex to kill him. We then cycled cards and I lost 5/15.
Game 3 remained the same board-wise but Paul chose alignment.
I scored Calculated Risk with Alensen. Paul played Inspiration Strikes and used Spoils of Battle to give Mollog Tome of Offerings. He charged Drakkskewer but missed. I shot Lund into the Troggoth and missed so used Seek the Skyvessel to move both my fighters away. Mollog charged Drakkskewer scoring Longstrider but missing.
Going first Drakkskewer attacked Mollog doing 3 damage. I equipped him with Potion of Rage then played Ready for Action. Paul reacted with Forceful Denial. He rolled a block and won the game. Pit Trap and Trap were useless now as no one else was inspired. He then healed 2 wounds with Healing Potion. Sigh. At that point I just went on to score Keep Them Guessing as Mollog went on to succeed with every attack and almost wiped me out. Thanks to Tome of Offerings I lost 5/17. Paul played well but it just sucks losing to Mollog in that way.
In the end I finished 25th out of 109, not bad but not great either. The warband worked well but The Bigger They Are bricked too much as you basically can’t score it against Ylthari’s Guardians and more people are running healing cards. The deck is still a glory machine but it will take a while for me to figure out what’s the optimum objective to swap in for.
The next Grand Clash will be a proper 2 day format with a top 16 Sunday cut which I’m really looking forwards to. No more multiple undefeated players with a true winner after a gruelling 9 rounds, all for £25! Remember you can buy your tickets here. There will be glory and, most importantly, crits!