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Scenario Discussion

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So, let's discuss the Storm that Castle Scenario.

 

This is one of those scenarios that invokes all sorts of reactions from me. I can dance the contradiction dance for about 10 minutes on what I like and what I dislike about it. I think this scenario gives a heavy advantage to the attacker when they bring very specific lists (like a Necropolis Non-corporeal Death Rider list). I think this list gives the defense an at least a bit of an advantage when specifically they bring a horde list to block all the cracks and tie up enemy models forever.

 

But, as with any scenario, there are lots of exceptions and contradictions. For example, An all hover or blink list would negate at least to a degree the horde list.

 

The real meat and potatoes questions really revolve around those factions that dont have access to lots of Non-corporeal, hover, blink, teleport, etc.. For them, it will come down to the fact that they can bring the weight of their entire army build down on subsection of the defender's list at a time. I think overall, this does give the offense the overall advantage to "win" the scenario. But, its the win by how much type of thing that i guess is the one area that bothers me so to speak.

 

As I said, I think for certain factions that can create certain builds (non-corporeal death riders) they should have very little problems raking in all of the "stand here" points in only a couple of turns if they can play it right. Where as someone who has to bludgeon their way along, might get the win but they probably wont be able to get those last few precious throne points when they do it.

 

On the flip side, all of this seems to get negative for the defense as you spend as much time as you can holding models up and casting distraction spells, moreso than actually trying to kill models which does more affectively tie up your own models more than stop the enemy (again depending on the ratio of attacker to defender models involved).

 

Its a great scenario that really makes you argue with yourself indeed.

 

I guess the overall balancer for this scenario is not this scenario itself, but rather the fact that most of the time, you will be playing it amongst several scenarios in a tourney setting where you have to build your army lists to handle other situations as well. That or the players' willingness to play a faction suited for this scenario rather than simply forcing the faction they usually play to fit this scenario as best it can.

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Ok, so as I said those were my thoughts on the initial reading.

 

I have played it a couple of times and pretty much stand bassed on the final analysis of my first post.

 

I raked in the points when I was able to be the attacker and build specifically for this scenario.

 

When I attacked with non scenario specific lists, I won 2 out of 3 but with much lower pointed struggled victories.

 

As defender, I was 0-1 against an opponent that built specifically for this scenario but i was able to keep him from getting near as many points as i had done when i had built specifically for this scenario.

 

And I was 1-3 on defense when using non-specific scenario lists.

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I'm glad you find it interesting Jason, I enjoy seeing what other people think about the scenarios. Since the tournament rulebook is still in production and is not yet published for everyone, I'll throw in a few more factors that you can take into account in your analysis:

 

  1. As part of the core Tournament Rules, when a tournament match begins, the player with the lowest cumulative scenario point total for the event gets to pick which side they want to play on. In the context of Storm the Palace, this means that one player will be choosing who plays defense and who plays offense. If you are performing very well in the tournament, you will very likely not get to choose whether you attack or defend, and your custom built army to deep strike as the attacker may be a lot less effective when your opponent chooses to put you on defense... so knowing this, do you still risk bringing an army custom built for attacking (or defending)? Do you instead try to make an army more balanced on offense and defense?
  2. While the defender has time and terrain to his advantage, the attacker is able to bring his entire army to bear at the same time while the defender must spread his 1000 points of troops amongst 3 separate rooms. If the attacker strikes deep and fast with a non-corporeal/blink/etc army as you suggest, the defender has a much easier time mopping up the spread out attacking troops by surrounding and eliminating the forces cut off from their peers thus the defender loses points for holding rooms, but gains more points for killing enemy models. If the attacker uses a "non-specific scenario" army as you suggest, I've found they usually assault in a much more traditional manner, taking rooms in sequence surrounding and eliminating the defenders smaller forces (since no more than 450 points of the defenders troops can start in any single room) thus gaining more points in kills, but losing points to the defender by taking less overall rooms. With both of these play styles, the winner or loser is often determined by 1 or 2 scenario points between them making for very close games.
  3. As you pointed out, the tournament scenarios are not played individually to determine a winner, but rather your cumulative score over all 3 scenarios is what is used to determine the final rankings in the tournament. How do these armies which are custom built for the Storm the Palace scenario perform on the other 2 scenarios chosen for any given tournament? Check out the other 8 scenarios and let me know if any of your Storm the Palace specific armies will also work optimally on each of these :)

 

Tim has posted the rules for this scenario in his Origins thread in case anyone else is keen to hop in on the discussion I would love to hear feedback :)

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My opinion is that this is not a good tournament scenario, its a good campaign scenario though. With the wrong list in a tournament this can really brutalize your list. While I realize that everything cannot always be fair (and in some cases shouldn't be) in a tournament I could see some lists just getting slammed in this one. In a campaign setting where both players can adjust forces to accomodate such a scenario then I think its good.

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My opinion is that this is not a good tournament scenario, its a good campaign scenario though. With the wrong list in a tournament this can really brutalize your list. While I realize that everything cannot always be fair (and in some cases shouldn't be) in a tournament I could see some lists just getting slammed in this one. In a campaign setting where both players can adjust forces to accomodate such a scenario then I think its good.

 

I agree. Tournament scenarios should not be this terrain specific, unless you give the players an opportunity to field armies designed for it. There's an interesting thought. The players bring three lists: 1) Non-scenario specific for the rounds other than the Castle; 2) Defending the Castle; and 3) Attacking the Castle. That way it minimizes potential animosity. I've never tried this so I don't know how it would work.

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There's an interesting thought. The players bring three lists: 1) Non-scenario specific for the rounds other than the Castle; 2) Defending the Castle; and 3) Attacking the Castle. That way it minimizes potential animosity. I've never tried this so I don't know how it would work.

And are you going to volunteer to review all those army lists before the tournament starts? Besides the review hassles, I would be totally against an army per scenario. It bugs me even letting the players know the scenario ahead of time.

 

Anyways, to get back on topic. When we playtested the scenarios for Origins, this same topic came up. Initially we discussed how certain combos can gain an edge in this scenario. The more I looked at it, the more angles I found. There are several spells & SA's that really rock in this scenario. Teleport, Non-Coporeal, and Hover for starters. I think that most armies have access to at least one of these. The more I've thought about Storm the Castle the more I've relaxed about it.

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I think that most armies have access to at least one of these.

 

Dwarves have none of those if I am not mistaken.

 

Wait they have one caster that can cast teleport but she is not worth fielding in any other scenerio.

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I think that most armies have access to at least one of these.

 

Dwarves have none of those if I am not mistaken.

 

Wait they have one caster that can cast teleport but she is not worth fielding in any other scenerio.

 

Certainly Non-Corporeal, Blink, Hover and Teleport are not an exhaustive list of Spells/SA that are beneficial on this scenario. In fact, the Dwarves are very strong defenders on this scenario having two very good Earth Tome spell casters which can cover the choke points with Molten Earth pits that remain in effect for the entire game as well as two casters with Wall of Fire which can significantly slow the progress of any attacker's advancement.

 

The Shockwave spell can also be extremely effective on both offense and defense in this scenario, and the Dwarves have 3 casters with access to it.

 

They may not have every offensive trick, but one of the objectives I had in putting together the scenario book was to force people out of their comfort zone in army building. If you don't include Margara Firetongue in your normal dwarf lists you may find yourself considering using her if this scenario is included at your next tournament. You may find you like her more on the field then you had thought upon first inspection of the data card, and I think encouraging players to try new things is ultimately good for both the game and players enjoyment of it. I can confidently say that Teleport (and the Arcane Tome in general) is very beneficial in several other scenarios besides just this one.

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I have not played this scenario yet, but I have watched two games so far. Both times I was very surprised by how balanced it actually was.

Even with an elven player blocking door ways with cat walls and launching Lightning Storms through closed doors, the games were still close and decided by skill not placement.

 

It seems that one of the concerns is that people who build armies specifically for this scenario will win it hands down. That just isn't the case from what I've seen. An attacking army focused on getting to the point objectives seems to spread itself out, giving the defender combat advantages. It all seems to balance out by the last round.

 

Carrying one list through the entire tournament is what makes building the army exciting. You have to try and cram all your combos and tricks into one cohesive list, so that you can pull out what you need in all 3 games.

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Wedge I wasn't saying they are bad at this scenario. I was just poiting out that they had none of those abilities in their list.

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Wedge I wasn't saying they are bad at this scenario. I was just poiting out that they had none of those abilities in their list.

 

Ah yes I see now :;):

 

I am looking forward to seeing how your Dwarves handle it this weekend :devil:

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i still think you need to tweak the cost on the thrown and final area. 5 2 2 1 instead of 4 3 2 1. If you did this all the deathriders or what ever non-corp, blink, teleport you do will only make it an even 5-5 on points. To gain an advantage the throne would have to be taken.

 

wedge, you said "If the attacker strikes deep and fast with a non-corporeal/blink/etc army as you suggest, the defender has a much easier time mopping up the spread out attacking troops by surrounding and eliminating the forces cut off from their peers thus the defender loses points for holding rooms, but gains more points for killing enemy models."

 

the point of the non corporeal/blink/ect isnt to attack the rooms. My death rider idea works well becase its one of the ones fast enough to reach the last room on its first turn. Any unit could with a little support magic as well. At the end of the turn all you need to do is get one rider into the room and then at the end of the turn you get the points. And if possible you move it back out beginning of round 2. even if you lose them both you lose very little of your army(while gaining at least 6 points giving you the advantage) and the first round of combat will be about 900points vs the defenders 300ish. A well constructed army with provoke/shock/stun will kill the 300 points and lose very little.

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As someone that has played, and won in both rolls with this scenario I've got no beefs with it. People can talk specific builds for scenarios but if you don't build a list that can handle the tournament as a whole it doesn't really matter.

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This is all true, I just wanted to spark some decent discussion and also maybe see some play lists or play results or whatnot..

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