Ok to start with this is a bit of a side step from how this series will go in general. Yes I know it is only part 2 and I am already off pissed… Sorry I meant piste (Parkers pissed). But I wanted to share some thoughts from the games we played yesterday, whilst they were still fresh in my mind. Therefore I won’t be going over anything in specific detail, but there are some definite things I learnt and certainly the guys learnt about the Brewers. Yesterday was a real step in the development of my progression as a Brewers player and I can really see why Jay and Chris at Guildball informer cite the Brewers as a bogey team for them, once the Brewers are on top of you, it’s like Parker after a few beers and he wants a struggle snuggle! Throughout the day I really got into the rhythm of my play and the synergies that this team has. I will also be posting a Battlehammer Bugle report on this soon (hopefully)
So yesterday was the first officially Sectioned event to be held in the battle cave. The next one is already booked for the 9th April and is the Northern invasion. This was a 6 person event with Sporty Hamster (Myself) using the Brewers, Sexy Hammer (Parker) concocting some shenanigans with Alchemists, Baby Hamster (Grant) Rocking fish, girly Hamster (Tara) taking Masons, Why the fuck can’t Mist score & your all a bunch of cunts Hammer (Straw) using the Spooks and Fuck my head feels like it has been hit with a Hammer (Spoony) playing Engineers. We each played 4 games, with the first couple of these being off the clock and then as time moved on we brought in the clocks. I have to say personally I really enjoyed the whole day and not just because I won (don’t worry we will most certainly be getting to that)! But it was great fun, lots of laughter, a fair bit of crying and definitely some drinking.
For me personally if you are planning to play tournaments practicing on the clock is invaluable. The game is played in such a different way when you have the pressure of the clocks counting down as opposed to a “friendly” game. Knowing what your team does and what you want it to do is such a benefit when you have the pressure of the clock. I remember on a Guildball informer episode (no idea which one) where a question was asked about tournament play and should you practice with your own team, or use the other teams to find out what they can do. Chris I believe answered it (sorry if that’s wrong Jay, but tough shit!!) by saying use your own team as much as possible and figure out your first turn sequence for if you are going to kick or receive the ball. This is in my opinion is absolutely true, if possible use your own team as much as you can and play against as many different opponents as possible. Obviously if you are a member of a club this is a lot easier, but try make the effort to get that variety in. Why? Because I promise you that as good as it is to know what your opponent can do, it is such a massive advantage if you know what you can do! Sounds obvious I know, but believe me if you know what you can do and what you want to do, getting your activation done quickly puts the pressure right back onto your opponent. The last thing someone wants to do after negotiating an 8 point Obulus activation is to then have to go again. Now the caveat to this is that I don’t just mean let Dr Obnoxious do all his trickery and then shunt your mascot an inch. Your activation needs to be concise and where possible have a wow factor. Then not only will your opponent have to go again they will also be reacting to “what the fuck just happened” I thought my team where dicks (yeah digging at you Morticians (check my bad ass pun and or play on words))!!
I don’t want to let this run into too much of a tournament tactical analysis as that is not what I was intended to write about. However one thing that I think is important to remember is have a plan! But also have another plan!! Well Totes you idiot this is obvious. Is it? Remember plan A maybe a really good plan, a really really good plan. But really good plans that statistically will work, often don’t work. An example of this was in the last gameof the day against Straw. Early doors turn 2 (I think) Mist was through on goal, he took the shot and…
… He missed. Now I don’t believe Straw will mind me saying this, but it really did take the wind out of his sails. It may have been 0-0 or possibly I had a takeout so 2-0. However missing this shot really messed him up, I think he will be the first to admit that from then on it went downhill fairly rapidly for him and I won 12-0. Straw as you will all know is a very experienced player he knows what his team can do. However in this instance I don’t think he knew what the Brewers can do, largely because I don’t think he has come up against them much before. So as a result of Plan A failing and statistically it shouldn’t of. He was in a position where he didn’t really know what to do next…
…As usual I have run away with my thoughts and need to bring it back to the point of this piece, which is what have I learnt about the Brewers? To put it simply they can absolutely without a doubt smack the living snot out of everyone! They make the Butchers look like new born kittens!, Ok maybe not quite that extreme and before all you Butchers players get a little excited and start sharpening your blades and getting your burning torches to hunt me down. There are discussions to film a game between myself and Sexy hammer; we are just sorting out the prise purse and TV rights. But it will be happening at some point. So how much hurt can they really put out? Every seen the site of Straws jaw hitting the table (and to be fair mine) when Fangtooth is taken out in a single activation on full health by Tapper? Yeah I have. Do you remember the time when Hooper knocked Midas for 11hp in one swing? Yeah I do. These two cases are the extremes of what can happen and do require some setup, although in fairness I think in Fangtooths case it was only that GM had already been removed.
What I will do now is break down each game as I remember it and what I learned with a bit of a conclusion at the end. In all 4 games I used exactly the same team: Tapper, Scum, Hooper, Spigot, Friday and Mash. Now I know in the last article I wrote I was waxing lyrical about Avarisse and to be fair I would have taken him. However he was currently unavailable due to getting a new suit fitted on Straws painting table. So Mash was in and for once he really got some work done for me!
Game 1 Fish
Corsair, Kraken, Angel, Salt, Jac, Sakana.
So in this game Grant took Corsair to try him out and to be fair he is much more experienced with Shark so I had a bit of an advantage here. I tried something slightly different for the kick off, which was to use Tapper. He has a 3/6 kick basic which is actually pretty good and if he is near Spigot this becomes 4/7. What I did forget at least once (against Straw) was to make sure he still remained within 4” of the cat! By using Tapper to kick off he has then got himself 4” up the pitch already, which is pretty sweet sauce as we are a slow team. Grant collected the ball with Sakana who then passed to Corsair who dodged 4” up the pitch. Now I can’t remember the exact in’s and out’s of what happened suffice to say either turn 1 or early turn 2 Corsair got hit by the Tapper train and then the following turn the same happened to Kraken. Which was pretty important, taking out any team’s captain early doors is pretty significant. But when it’s a slow character like Corsair you have effectively removed them from the game, it just takes him so long to waddle back into a useful position, that often the game is well on its way to being over. The game finished 12-0 with Tapper getting 2 take outs, Hooper getting 1 and Friday scored and I can’t remember who got the other take out.
What did I learn from this game? Tapper and Commanding aura are just amazing. The question is do you spend influence or try get it off the playbook? I will look at this in more depth in a Tapper specific article. Also Friday… wow! This girl can seriously hurt face. Now her short playbook is awesome for getting hits granted, but for me Dirty knives is where it is at! More on this in a bit!
Game 2 Alchemists
Midas, Flask, Vitriol, Compound, Calculus, Mercury.
To start with I haven’t gone up against the Alchemists before when used by an experienced player and to be fair I was a little concerned. The only previous occasion I have faced them is at a club against a guy who was very new to the game. Having never faced blind when it was an AOE is probably a good thing, but I still had my reservations as the one thing that is really a weakness in the Brewers (other than speed) is there innately low defence. All your key central players are 3+ defence which means getting character plays off of them is generally quite easy. Fortunately I think Parkers brain was a bit fried from his first game which was against the engineers, which he lost to the clock. He was 10-2 up and clocked out. There was no way he could get the 2 points before giving away vp’s (Chris also scored), which left him a bit frustrated and flustered going into are game. The basic swing of this game was that Vitriol scored knee slid back up the pitch. Brewers knocked the snot out of the Alchemists 12-4. Blind I am guessing isn’t as crazy as before but along with heavy burden it really caused me some problems. In this game I used Friday a lot more aggressively, she got right in the mix and was dishing out dirty knives like it was going out of fashion!! King Midas replicated it for himself so impressed was he with their effect. In truth it was more because he engaged Hooped who then used don’t touch the hair to get out of Midas’s melee range, therefore leaving the king without much else he could do.
Now to go into a little more detail about the hit that did 11 points of damage on Midas. It would appear I have found a chink in the Kings armour… it’s the fact he doesn’t have any! So in turn he is actually quite squishy when you get into him. 14hp doesn’t go that far when someone is knocking the snot out of you. If I remember rightly Friday had got Dirty knives on him from an attack she had done on someone else, therefore his defence is down to 4+. For the life of me I can’t remember if he was knocked down already or if Hooper had done it with his first attack, but he was on the ground, def 3+. So then the bonuses start to stack up.. TAC 5 + true grit (+2) + commanding aura (+1) = 8 dice, there may have been a ganging up as well. The dice are rolled and I can’t remember what I got exactly but 7 successes = 3 momentous +1 commanding aura, +1 shove the boot in, +1 tooled up ( from column 5) & 2 non-momentous +1 commanding aura, +1 shove the boot in, +1 tooled up ( from column 2) for a total of 11. It actually didn’t take him out; the poison finished him off in the maintenance phase.
From this game I really learned the value of Dirty knives. I have never really used it before this tournament but in the first 2 games it was really starting to get work done. Also Hooper is an absolute machine. He can’t quite hit the heights that Tapper can, but he really isn’t far off them. Also players like Compound, Tenderiser and Brick are just amazing! Being able to counter charge someone really gives you some great board control. I even moved into range of Compounds threat having just discussed it with Parker! What a dick (she said… snigger snigger). Also a shout out to Parker and a great use of Horrific Odour to deny me a goal scoring opportunity!
Game 3 Engineers
Balista, Mainspring, Colossus, Salvo, Compound, Velocity (I think).
Now I am going to skip over this one a bit as I don’t think I learnt anything that we didn’t already know about the Engineers and this has already gone on a lot longer than intended. They are annoying at range and then you get into them and they fall apart like a Jenga tower! Tapper did his thing and took Balista out early doors. It finished 12-0 the Brewers, Chris was a bit shell shocked I think. He admitted that he just didn’t know what was going on, players where getting knocked all over the place and my Brewers just got on top of him really quickly.
Game 4 Morticians!!!!! Aaarrrggggghhhhhhh
Obulous, Dirge, Fangtooth, Ghast, Silence, Mist.
Ok… right… Morticians… here is a thought… I FUCKING HATE PLAYING THE MORTICIANS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They simply have so many ways of dealing with the Brewers: Shut out Tapper or Puppet master him out of the way if this fails. They also have annoying tricks like Fear and re-animate that require extra influence to deal with.
I have already talked about Mist and the spectacular miss he did. So I won’t go back over that other than to say I genuinely did feel for Straw at this point. It may not have looked like it as I was rolling around on the floor laughing (HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA)! But it really did leave him in a pickle. I decided to take a bit of a different approach in this game, normally I am a bit afraid of Obulous he has so many tricks for messing up are plans as we have such low defence. Plus he is really hard to pin down with Unpredictable movement. So I made him a target priority and went after him. I can’t fault Straws initial plan it is pretty much exactly what I expected. Hold the centre with Fangtooth and Ghast, score with Mist and do irritating shit with Dr Obnoxious and Silence. Good plan, solid plan! Then the thing happened that neither of us expected… Fangtooth got Tappered. We were both in a state of shock! Like what the actual fuck happened? One minute big stinky Fangtooth is there, the next Tapper is on his own taking a swig of Old Jakes. I will wrap this up fairly quickly now as I have written far more than I intended and I don’t want you to be put off from reading future articles. The final outcome was 12-0 and all the guys you would expect to survive where taken out (Ghast, Obnoxious and Fangtooth). Not only did Mash score he even managed a 6 point activation (he finished of Ghast who was on 5 points).
In this game I definitely learnt that if you are going to do damage to Ghast you need to take him out in a turn. Otherwise you are giving your opponent momentum from Anger rising and also wasting the point of influence on Fear. I must confess that the tactic I used was to remove Fear with Dirty knives. Yes it requires 3 influence to get 1 3+, but that then means Ghast is defence 2+ Tapper now can use him as a battery to generate Commanding aura. Then you knock him down (if he isn’t already) and you are getting +2 TAC, 1 from commanding aura and one from attacking a knocked down def. 2+ model (Dirty knives). Tappers on 8 dice, Spigot and Hooper can be on 9 dice and this is without ganging up! I think you are starting to get my point. Also I learnt not to fear Dr Obnoxious but to just knock the snot out of him (if only it was always that simple)!
Conclusions from the day.
Ok I really need to wrap this up now(I know keep saying that) you probably have a life you need to get back to! So some brief points that I have learnt, there will definitely be more in depth analysis coming as I develop my game further.
- I honestly don’t think there is another player currently in the game that can dish out the pain like Tapper can on his own. Sure there are powerful combinations available, but genuinely this guy is a machine. He is an assassin pure and simple; yes he lacks the finesse of a Chisel. But point him at any player out there and he will remove it. As mentioned before he took down Fangtooth in 1 activation! There will definitely be a more in depth write up coming soon on this guy. But I can’t emphasise enough how hard he hits. Off the top of my head throughout the day he took out at least 2 players every game and every captain except Midas. There just simply isn’t anyone else who can do that. Ox and Blackheart come close but in a straight up fight Tapper will take them out and I don’t think they could do the same to him (love you Tough Hide). Also he really wants to be first activation or going second on someone Friday has got Dirty knives on.
- Friday… wow can she do so much more than score! Yes she is currently the fastest guild player and the most likely to score. But I used her much more aggressively than before and it really paid off. Her short playbook really helps get damage done. Also if you are going to commit her to the fight make sure she is within 4” of Spiggot. That defence 5+ with 1 armour is really solid. If you can get her into a position where she can generate Dirty knives off her play, preferably a low defence knocked down opponent. She can start dishing it out around the team and believe me this makes Tapper very happy.
- Mash I am sorry big guy, I have been a little down on you before and I have now seen the error of my ways and I apologise. For too long I have been trying to play him as an out-n-out striker which he just isn’t. What he is really good at is giving that ganging up bonus due to 2” melee, or holding onto the ball behind your lines. I don’t know how but he has unpredictable movement which makes him as slippery as Dr Obnoxious (but not quite as big dick, shame! With super shot he is great at waiting for the a hole to appear in the opponents line and making a break for a long shot.
- Final point I promise… Hooper. Boy is this man solid. He is great going mid to late activation and finishing off the broken scraps that Tapper has left over. He has tough hide so won’t go down easily (unlike Straw). Also his heroic play is almost as good as Tappers! Now +2 tac is amazing on its own for 1 momentum, you will always get this back. But the bit I always forget is that it clears all conditions currently on him (WTF)! Meaning that if he is going late in the turn to finish people he will usually be at around +3/4 (true grit, commanding aura)TAC and +1/2 damage (commanding aura, shove the boot in)
There is so much more I would like to add but I will spare you more brain farts for now. Thank you so much for sticking it out through this one. I know it was long, but I really wanted to just get my thoughts out there. In future I will really try to real it in a bit I promise. As always please drop in some comments and your thoughts either below or through twitter. Hell yeah the Battle hammer maybe in a cave but we knows all about the tinternet (Parker I hope you have deleted your search history). Thanks again and as always Love and kisses xxx Totes
Did you really think I had forgotten??
I won Bitches hells muther fucking yeahs, I am fucking amaze balls!!!!!