Sunday, June 4, 2017

3 Games, 4 Archidons, 0 Wins - I Hate You Guys: My Month of Xekaar, Part 2

So I recently picked up 3 archidons, bringing my total of them to 4. I had a few plans, mainly because I had only started running Naaresh near the end of Mk 2 and Archidon Spam - a mostly terrible idea that seemed to gain a lot of traction post-errata - actually seemed fun with him. P+S 20 defense 14 armor 19 beasts that threaten 13"? Yes Please!

Instead, I fielded them with Xekaar.

Skorne Army - 75 / 75 points

(Xekaar 1) Beast Master Xekaar [+31]
 - Archidon [10]
 - Archidon [10]
 - Archidon [10]
 - Archidon [10]
 - Basilisk Krea [7]
 - Chiron [19]
 - Cyclops Shaman [8]
 - Titan Gladiator [15]
 - Aptimus Marketh [5]
Orin Midwinter, Rogue Inquisitor [5]
Paingiver Beast Handlers (max) [7]

Game 1

Into Scaverous, running a mix of bane riders, bane warriors, wraith engine, and some desecrators. Not in theme, to take the Withershadow.

My opponent runs up pretty fast and far top of 1, and I realize I can jam up the right side of the board and feat to hard block him in. I figure between concealment, a krea aura, and Orin, I should be pretty safe with the two archidons standing in the way (Chiron is covering the left with his animus, actually assaulted and took out a war witch and broke the arc node off a chicken jack).

Scaverous feats and I die to a feast of worms and some Cephalyx sprays.

Game 2

A friend of mine is working on Midas, a caster he picked up a bit of interest in recently after being down on him for awhile (assassination run flubbing and leaving an opponent on 1 box can do that to you). From memory, his list was 1 battle boar, 2 road hogs, 4 razor boars, Meat Thresher, 3 units of grinders, Moorclaw and 2 efaarit scouts.

My list is still that pile of garbage up top.

Nothing like smelly garbage lists in the morning

Round 1 shit runs fast on both sides. I pop a bunch of protective spells and leave archidons to threaten well past contesting range of the objectives.

Round 2

My opponent advances his warhogs and meat thresher, being all cheeky with 'em and shit. I know his games! I kill a warhog, then lose my heavies to stupid bone grinders. Then I get assassinated by Midas' feat on top of it. No way am I falling for this shit again!

Then some commandos ambush on and do a CRA into my left Archidon, and actually fuck him up pretty bad. Remember how I gave his list from memory? Welcome to the hell that is random ambushing shit in themes.

Okay, so now I have a fucked up archidon, and his army is baring down on me begging me to trade heavies. This list kinda is meant to do that, though, since I'm bringing so many garbage heavies. Archidons on the right get enraged, some rushing, and they fly out to bring down the meat thresher with the help of a mortality from Marketh(CID rules on it, for the curious).

On the left I decide to play Cygnar and zap the messed up bird with Orin. I get 1 leap and pop a commando with it, toughing the guy on the flag. Skorne sucks at this. Other 'don charges a road hog, crits, and throws him into some bone grinders. Chiron flings out and drops a road hog, pops animus. Defensive stuff goes up, including feat.

Round 3

Some grinders get battle lust and charge Chiron, counter blast saves him from some of the damage but he loses about half his boxes. The archidon on the left goes down to grinders and Commandos. Some more grinders swing onto the other leftward Don. Feat goes pretty heavily in my favor, though, and I only lose 1 archidon during it.

My rebuttal involves killing a boatload of bone grinders, and spraying Midas along with a bunch of them (dealing a big chunk to his battle boar). At this point, I'm basically praying for Frenzies on my stuff, though, and nothing does (Except the gladiator, who punches the fuck out of my krea, leaving me with 3 archidons full on fury for the next turn. Basically just Chiron and the shaman get work done, as Orin throws out some lightning at Commandos and manages to trigger tough on the guy on the flag, no deaths.

Orin is gonna get got

Round 4

Midas feats, and a bunch of grinders wipe out the left archidon, Chiron barely survives some brought back beasts and bone grinders, (dice whiffed a lot of attacks on him). Orin gets got. We go to 3-3.

Still no frenzies on my turn. Shaman, archidon, and Chiron kill a few brought back beasts and bone grinders. Marketh tries to pop the pig on the flag, and causes a tough roll (3rd one for this guy). We go to 4-4.

Round 5

Shaman gets popped, razor boar runs to the flag I'm controlling, commandos hang out on their flag.


So the feat worked well here, partially thanks to how average the Archidon stats are I think. 17/19 is a decent statline, and they did manage a solid alpha run. Just... Beast Master Xekaar really can't run a lot of beasts. Ferox could be good, even though he doesn't do much for them and they're run way better elsewhere. Or if he had less of a joke way to apply spells (witch mark on a 2" melee with no defensive tech? Really?). Or maybe a teleport, arch node... or hell, I'd trade my left Archidon for soothing song.

Game 3

Cryx again, same opponent. This time he's dropping bane theme, run by Gaspy 2.

I'm still running Xekaar with 4 archidons. Because if you guys hate me, maybe I should hate me a little, too.

Nothing like facing down a solid theme with a caster that synergizes well with it
while running a garbage caster with no theme in a joke list.

Round 1

Stuff moves fast across the board (see above for top of 1 move).

Round 2

Banes jam me up by running (fuck that corpse fucker on a horse).
I contemplate a new dadaist approach to list building, and have begun writing the names of models on scrap paper.

I punch back a bit, wiping out the bane knights (leaving 1 left) and half the bane unit on the right. Some Archidons jam up the Desecrators and I pop feat. Other defensive stuff happens.

Round 4

I get my shit kicked in, bad. Feat doesn't do much to help me, realistically I only lose an archidon to a desecrator outside of the bubble. Could be worse.

I begin swallowing the scraps of paper. I have become not unlike a bird, storing nesting materials to help with that which I shall spawn.

Everything frenzies except my Shaman and one Archidon.

Marketh hits Gaspy with Mortality.

Xekaar mortalities the Desecrator, rushes the don, and then fails to kill a bane so he can spring, leaving him engaged with a desecrator and surrounded.

Shaman gets enraged and prodded, charges the desecrator. He deals a ton of damage to it, breaking movement. Swings, boosts damage, doing more good works. Buying my final attack, probably gonna break it... or not, double 1's to hit. Archidon is still engaged, rest of my beasts are out of service, and the Desecrator still has both arms. Xekaar gonna die, though, so the Archidon walks up to Gaspy. Free strike from the Desecrator breaks his mind. I fill 'er up, fail to assassinate, and concede.

I vomit a small pile of paper, and begin unfolding the pieces in order to divine my next list idea. Surely it cannot be worse than this.

Final Thoughts

I really, really don't think Xekaar can run beasts worth a piss. He is, at best, a decent anti-melee turn in an army that is either slow as dirt or investing tons of resources to speed up beasts. That is, we can either run a lot of beasts slowly, or a few of them quickly - choose one (Or Play X2)- and he wants to engage too soon to really take advantage of a handful of Skorne heavies. 

His feat is still amazing, psycho surgery is still fantastic if you run beast heavy (which he shouldn't), and mortality is still a fantastic spell. Deadweight, likewise, is ball busting, but it was damned near impossible to actually have a chance to use it with him. Same with Pursuit, except it doesn't even really make sense as a threat extender when you have a caster with that short of range anyway. What, did he run for 2 rounds?

I might bring out Zaadesh1 into my lists in the future as a Rush bot. I found him great at that before, as well as running a few brutes. Brute spam worked by just overwhelming an opponent with things you didn't really care about attacking - which is boring as all hell but effective. I think maybe.... Karax? Karax with UA? I had a ton of fun running a bunch of infantry with him on Friday, so I might keep investigating that niche. A few durable heavies (sentry x2 and a bronzeback maybe?), fill with Ferox, swordsmen, keltarii, legends etc. If we had a Praetorian theme, I actually think Xekaar might really sing there - flinging himself down field behind a few shield guard beasts and feating, protecting a massive wave of infantry. Game night is tomorrow, so I'll see about doing a ton of infantry with him (I just picked up a second nihilator unit, maybe I'll try some jank with a tough flood).

Anyway, I have one more report to write up on a vassal game (that game on the aforementioned Friday). It was pretty dumb, and involved a lot of double and triple ones on both sides of the... screen? Ended on a scenario win, though I think I was positioned to take out all but a Conquest and Sorcha if I had played out the last turn. I'm gonna keep on keeping on, and trying to figure out if there is something to unlock here (there isn't).


  1. As weird as it sounds I think you are onto something with the few shield guard heavies and infantry. That is what I am going to run with him. I have swordsmen, karax, bronzeback, gladiator, sentry, krea, agonizer, pgbh, and I dont remember what other fillers. My thought is walk up the board with krea animus and then feat with agonizer and see if they can kill stuff. super attrition heavy list and in sr 2017 I think it can be ok(we play that in our leage)

    1. Yeah, that sounds like a solid gameplan, though right now I'm feeling a little more push towards Chiron and a few basilisks, followed by a spam of infantry. I like the swordsmen and Karax idea, and with SR 2017 It should be easy to protect most of your army with his feat while still projecting threat from swordsmen.