Posts tagged ‘golem arcana’

Golem Arcana Indy

Blaugust 2015 Day 30

Saturday was my day to meet up with the Indy Golem Arcana group. Only four of us could makes it, which is about half as many people as usually show up, but it was enough to have two games running. We used 100 point armies rather than the usual 500. If you’re not familiar with miniatures war games, every unit has a point cost to it. So game scenarios are usually designed with a certain amount of units in mind, and it also helps to make sure that teams are evenly matched.

I had some trouble initially putting an army together since I hadn’t put together a large build in a couple of months. Having a large pool of points to spend might not sound like a big deal, but it can make it harder to build good synergies in when you have a larger number of units. Once I finally got my mental gears switched over though I actually ended up putting two different armies together that I played with.

Zikia – Fen Prowlers

Zikia - Fen Prowlers

With three Titans (Fen Lord, Wildwood Dryad, and Fend Lord) and three Ogres (all Prowlers), this is a big army. The three Prowlers are so mobile though that I wan’t too worried about getting out maneuvered. I also really liked having three Prowlers in this build since they generally end up destroyed pretty quick, as most opposing players will attack them first because of their Caustic Spray attack and their passive ability which gives them a 5 point damage-over-time for three rounds after they move. Combine that with the two Fen Lords’ ability to pull enemies in and melee, the Dryad’s ranged abilities, and I ended up with a pretty well rounded army and enough points left over for some relics and an Ancient One.

This army went up against a Durani build with a couple of Winged Preservers (very mobile Titans), a Jeweled Harpy, and a trio of Fire Rams (think artillery). I ended up losing two Prowlers early on as I wasn’t careful about staying out of range of the Fire Rams. At the midpoint of the match I was down two Prowlers, my remaining one was highly damaged as were both Fen Lords. The Dryad was the only golem undamaged. My opponent hadn’t lost any units although two of his Preservers and his Harpy were heavily damaged.

Fortunately for me, the match turned around pretty sharply when I destroyed both of his Preservers before he destroyed one of my Fen Lords. He moved in his Rams to try and get range on the rest of my units, but I moved my remaining Prowler in originally intended to soften them up and then follow up with the remaining Fen Lord pulling out the Rams individually and destroying them in melee. I had forgotten about the special effect on Caustic Spray though. I very rarely get to use it against a group of enemies in the same region, so I had forgotten that the Spray bounces and causes each golem in the region to do 10 damage to every other golem in the region. So instead of doing 8 damage to each golem with a 15 DoT over the following three rounds, I actually did 28 damage plus the DoT. Rams only have 60 hit points to begin with and I had gotten in some attacks early on so all three were reduced to 4 hit points and then died at the beginning of my opponents turn.

That was basically the end of the game. I did have to contend with his Warsprite Harpy, but with two Titans and an Ogre remaining it was quickly over.

2015-08-29 14.17.05

Urugal – Dread Vanguard

Urugal - Dread Vanguard

The Ashmogh Colossus in the back, then left to right in the front are the Corpse Collector (Ogre), two Crypt Ticks (Warsprites), and the Morrow Witch (Ogre). The Ashmogh is the newest Colossus released for the game, and one of the reasons why the group wanted to play 1000 point armies. I basically threw this one together by picking the Ashmogh and most of the units from the most recent Urugal release. I left out the Relentless Brute (Titan) since it’s a melee powerhouse which I didn’t need with a Colossus on the field. Instead I went with a Corpse Collector because it was more mobile and had a nice ability to drag enemies to neighboring regions.

My Urugal army went up against a Durani army containing a Jagara Colossus, one Titan a Growling Phalanx, two Ogres a Prowler and a Fire Ram, and one Warsprite Vigilant Sentinel.

2015-08-29 15.35.40

With two Colossi on the field, this turned out to be a pretty long match. I started out with a really nice combo by using a relic on my Morrow Witch that added 10 regions to her range, and which let her use her ranged attack, Surging Hex, all the way across the board. Surging Hex is a damage-over-time attack that does no damage initially. Instead it does 5 damage the first round, 10 the second, and 15 the third. Even better, unlike most effects, this one stacks, and I hit his Jagara with it three times. So the Witch’s hex did 15 damage to the Jagara on my opponents first turn, 30 on the second, and 45 on the third. That’s 90 damage against the Jagara’s 250 hit points.

The next round my opponent led by bringing his Prowler across the board to get some early Caustic Sprays on my army, and I countered on my second turn by pulling his Prowler in with my Corpse Collector and bringing both Ticks in for melee. If I hadn’t missed, I would have been able to destroy his Ogre with their healing attacks, but sometimes the Random Number Generator likes me and sometimes it doesn’t and early in this game it definitely did not.

I ended up losing both Crypt Ticks and the Corpse Collector in the first half of the game, while my opponent had only list his Fire Ram. But all of his other units were heavily damaged between the Ashmogh wading into the middle of the combat and the Witch staying at the edges and throwing out Hexes. Usually Morrow Witches are the only units with a bigger target on their backs than Prowlers because their DoT is so nasty, but my opponent was so focused on my Ashmogh that she managed to hang around for most of the game and I think that made the difference in my win.

This was a tricky army for me to play. The Urugal faction is powerful but most of their abilities are fueled by sacrificing hit points, which is counter to my normal play style. This was also the first time I had used the Morrow Witch or the Crypt Ticks in a real match. Surprisingly to me, I think I played better in this match than the previous one as I didn’t have any unintentional good moves like the one I pulled with the Prowler against the Fire Rams. I think because I’m not as familiar with Urugal as I am with Zikia, I’m more careful and pay better attention to what abilities I have available.

Almost There

Blaugust 2015 Day 16

Guilt and Joy

About two or three Saturdays a month since March, I’ve been heading down to my local gaming store and playing Golem Arcana. Usually I feel a little guilty because I’m gone for about five hours and leaving my wife to deal with Thing 1 and Thing 2 solo. This weekend though, my dad was taking Ting 1 for the day, and Thing 2 is much easier to handle without his older brother winding him up. So I was able to have a nice guilt-free wargaming visit yesterday.

I got three games in, didn’t win any off them but they were still fun. Afterwards while we were packing up and chatting I realized that everyone was thrilled to be there and playing. It seemed like a stark contrast to what I usually see in MMO forums and chat.

So far the only downside to being part of an active group is that it has finally pulled me into using Facebook regularly. I’ve had an account for years but used it very little, like nearly never.

Blaugust Midpoint

August is now half gone, and while I’ve had a few days that were tough for me to get something written overall I’ve been totally happy with my writing. I have seen posts from some people that aren’t joining the event or have already dropped out. It’s understandable. I’ve certainly considered it myself a few times, especially when I sit down and think I’ve got nothing to say. But for me, that’s really the point of this. I start writing and after getting a few hundred words of drivel out of the way, something usually comes out that I didn’t realize that I’d been thinking about. I find that experience pretty cool.

So if you’re participating and worried you run out of steam now that we’re halfway through, I think you should look at it as a good thing. It’s a chance to see what happens when you sit down and just start typing. Even if you don’t actually post it.

 

Hodge Podge

Blaugust 2015 Day 11

I’m feeling a scattered tonight and figured I’d just shotgun some random thoughts rather than try for any kind of coherency. Enjoy.

Kerbal Space Program

Kerbal Space Program definitely provides Civ and Minecraft moments. Just finished a mission, “That went well, what time is it? Oh it’s after midnight, I’ll just plan out this next mission then go to bed.” Three missions later… “What time is it? Oh it’s almost 3 am, I need to go to bed immediately.”

One of the few downsides to KSP is that it’s limited to 32-bit because the 64-bit version of Unity it runs on isn’t stable on Windows. For the stock game this isn’t much of an issue, but it causes problems once you get into modding the game. I’ve several times had to start pruning parts from the game because I had so many mods installed the game was becoming unstable.

Tools Inheritance

When my grandfather passed away, my dad inherited grandpa’s sizable tool collection and home-made workshop cabinets. When my dad sold his house to RV full-time, I inherited them. Looking through the drawers makes me feel like one of the monkeys from the start of 2001: A Space Odyssey. Not only do I not know how to use some of these tools, I kind even identify what some of this stuff is.

Competition

I’m not a competitive person. I suppose that comes from having little to no athleticism as a kid. So I feel very lucky that I ended up with such a friendly group to play Golem Arcana with. Even though it is a competitive game, and everyone likes to win, there’s no cutthroat behavior. Everyone’s more interested in losing a good game than winning on a technicality or poor play. We’re all in the habit of suggesting moves, pointing out missed opportunities (when there’s still time for the other player to capitalize on it), and sharing strategies and builds.

GenCon 2015 Part 3

Blaugust 2015 Day 04

2015-08-01 09.17.27On Saturday, started out back in the Golem Arcana area of the play hall. Enough of the east and west coast regional players hadn’t been able to come to GenCon, that most of the midwest regional players got into the national tournament, including me. So I got to play far more than I expected.

2015-08-01 11.23.22My first round was against the ten year old son of one of the other players, Alex76. The game started off badly for me but I managed to tie it up, and then we ended up going back and forth both trying to get the last point we needed to win. In the end it came down to our last two golems, each down to their few hitpoints when I managed to get a successful attack and win the game. While I like to win, I’m not a super competitive person. Most of my favorite games of Golem Arcana were super close ones like this one, some of which I’ve lost and some I’ve one. This one has some great close calls one both sides.

The other thing I really enjoy about this game is the community that’s building up around it. Likely because the game is so new and the player community is small, but everyone is very friendly. Case in point being in this match, where partway through I noticed Alex was having trouble thinking through all of the moves in a turn and I told Alex’s dad he could help him out. I didn’t want to do it myself because I didn’t want to accidentally give him bad advice. There were a lot of instances like this of players helping each other out, and while I hope that the game continues to grow, I really want this friendliness in the community to continue.

Unfortunately for me the next round in the tournament wasn’t nearly that close and I lost about four turns in. As it would turn out on Sunday though, I lost to the play who ended up winning the entire tournament.

Fleet Captains MeetupBesides the Golem Arcana tournament, the other big thing I had planned for Saturday was a meetup with Wininoid, Todd, and Greendragoon, fellow Star Trek Online player and Foundry fanatic, for a game of Star Trek Fleet Captains.

We had a lot of fun and what turned out to be nearly a four hour game flew by. This was the first time I’d gotten a chance to actually get the game out and really play aside from a brief solo attempt to learn the rules. I was really impressed by how well the game captured the different feels of the Federation, Klingons, and Romulans, something Todd commented on as well. I’m already hoping to get a chance to play this again with them next year.

Tomorrow I’ll wrap up my GenCon recap. If you’re curious about this Blaugust craziness go check out the Blaugust Initiate Page.

GenCon 2015 Part 1

Blaugust 2015 Day 02

GenCon kicked off on Thursday morning and I started off the convention in the giant Will Call line. It stretched across the length of the convention center and looked pretty daunting, but I had been through the same thing the year before and found that the line moved pretty quickly. I ended up getting through and picking up my event tickets in about fifteen minutes.

I passed even that short of a time pretty quickly by talking to the people in front of and behind me in line. That isn’t the kind of thing I normally do, but it’s part of the magic of GenCon for me. It’s four days surrounded by thousands of people who are at least as weird as I am. It’s a very liberating experience.

Lone Wold 1 SignedThe high point of the first day for me and possible the whole convention was getting to meet Joe Dever and getting my copy of Lone Wolf #1 signed. He was super friendly and very generous with his time. The Lone Wolf gamebooks were a big part of my childhood, second only to Tolkien’s Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, and it was a complete thrill to get to meet Mr. Dever and tell him that. I was giddy the rest of the day and thinking about it still makes me grin.

2015-07-30 13.56.34Most of the rest of the day I spent in Hall F which is where Harebrained Scheme’s Golem Arcana play area was. I had signed up for the Midwest Tournament and a large number of the other people in it were from my playgroup here in Indy (note the bowling shirts), so there were plenty of other games to watch when I wasn’t playing myself. I had a bye for the first round as a result of League Play earlier in the year, and I managed to narrowly win my Round Two game. Unfortunately I lost my Round Three game so I didn’t play in the semi-finals on Friday, but it was a super close game.

2015-07-30 16.41.27By the way, I say “super close” not cause I’m trying to mitigate losing. I really enjoyed that game. Both myself and my opponent played extremely well, and the game literally game down to dice rolls on the last two rounds. Had I’d rolled a hit, or had my opponent rolls a miss on the following turn, the outcome would’ve reversed. I totally prefer games like that over just steamrolling someone. Although winning is always nice.

I capped off the day by meeting up with my friend Todd (Wininoid) and playing games in the convention center until they shut the lights off in the play hall at midnight. We had to pack up by cell phone flashlight.

I’d gotten up at 7 am Thursday and didn’t get home and get to bed until 2:30 am. I was pretty amped up from the day even though I was exhausted, so it took me an hour to wind down enough to sleep.

One last thing! It’s not too late to join in, unless you’re reading this after August 31st. Visit the Blaugust Initiate Page to see how.