Monday, March 6, 2017

Into the Wild Blue Yonder - Episode 7: STEAMAPECONBALLS

I have been rather busy since the end of February between work+family+study+entertainment/minimal socializing, but thought I should do a quick write up of this neat little event, for the Watch.

As was alluded in my lead up articles, I ended up running Fish with the 9 man roster of:

Shark, Corsair, Salt, Kraken, A+G, Greyscales, Sakana, Siren1 and Siren2

In the end, I ran Corsair, Salt, Kraken, A+G & Greyscales in all 3 games, only switching Sirens around.

Game 1: Alchemists (Martina)

The lineup here was Midas, Flask, Harry, Vitriol, Compound & Mercury.

The real key factors for me in this matchup were that the room was freakishly cold (the A/C was fixed reasonably quickly, but the frost remained till the end of my game) and the ceiling lights blinding me via glare. I dunno if it was the particular spot I was sitting at but I am quite certain I went partially blind for a few minutes after I left the room.

Anyway, I ended up having to kick the ball and was super not confident in my Shark game for some reason, so decided to play a grind game and go 4-1 with Corsair and Siren1 just to give me a little more ball grab ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°).  In retrospect, an aggressive Shark game would have been WAY better.

The actual outcome of the game was that I ended up beating on Harry and hiding the ball from Midas/ Vitriol with Salt on a flank behind a wall of manly Tough Hide meat. What a shameful way for a Fish to play.

The main highlight in this game for me was when I specifically pointed out that Compound had Gluttonous Mass so Luring him in would be a waste, but I then proceeded to do exactly that less than 2 minutes later. Classic.

Anyway, very little happened due to my cageyness and I just ended up winning via 3 takeouts (2x Harry + Midas) and clock, while I lost Salt once and let through a Vitriol goal very early on.

12 - 5 shameful victory.

Game 2: Morticians (Peter)

Scalpel, Dirge, Cosset, Graves1, Ghast, Silence

Pete and I had played a practice game a few days earlier, where he just put the ball on Dirge and kept running away while slowly killing my guys, and I wasn't aggressive enough with Shark to just go get the ball, and kept trying to find an ideal time to Legendary & run away (12 -8 in the end).

This time I picked Corsair with Siren2 and went full into fight mode with the occasional speed run at the goal.

The general story (if I recall correctly) was that I received, scored a Salt goal turn 1, and then we fought around a wall the entire game. I lost Corsair really early, followed by A+G later on in the match, and I also lost Siren2 twice. I did manage a Cosset takeout and Greyscales goal in there as well. 12 - 10 loss in the end.

Silence was definitely the MVP in this game with his successful use of character plays - I think on turn 3, I won initiative and chose to go second, with Greyscales holding the ball about 7" from the enemy goal and not really anyone near him. Silence managed to get 2 hits on Salt for a momentous result, then bonus timed a Shutout at Greyscales, effectively turning a good chance at 2 back to back goals for me into a grind in the middle of the pitch and only 1 goal that turn. He also got some pro Fire Blasts that made me burn some momentum to stay in the fight.

The two crucial mistakes in this game were bringing vet Siren back on way too close to the board edge (Scalpel's low push dodge made short work of that in 2 attacks - she is pretty fast that one), and my choice of target after winning initiative on the last turn at 10 - 8 score in my favour. Facing clock pressure, I made the retroactively very poor decision to beat on a nearly full health Graves1 behind a wall with Corsair, rather than killing Ghast on 12 health (Ghast always seems unkillable to me, but it is a mere illusion!). Statistically, Corsair with 6 INF should kill Ghast safely - momentous KD with first 2 INF, then bonus time every roll from there for an average of 5 hits = 3 momentous damage + push. Get 1-2 wraps for 4 damage should make up for slightly below average rolls that result in only 2 damage or 3 non-momentous).

With this failure, Scalpel just put one in the net and took the Morticians to 12. GG

Game 3: Alchemists (Stent)

Midas, Naja, Vitriol, Harry, Katalyst1, Compound

Pretty good game. I went with Siren1. You can watch it here in all its glory, with commentary from Luke "Savagelord" Brimblecombe:

Biggest mistakes on my part were:
  1. Not pulling in Katalyst turn 2 while destroying Vitriol start of turn 2. This opened up Katalyst to charge and shit fire all over my team, which ate up a decent amount of momentum. I probably should have focused more on damaging Katalyst with Kraken & Avarisse throughout the game as well, he was mostly left out to dry after the charge and could have easily been my 2nd takeout without too much sacrifice.
  2. Not so much a mistake as a scrubtastic tragedy, namely of kicking the ball into a wall with Seduced Midas. I think the best play would either have been to dump the ball in the middle (via a kick out of bounds) and hope for a good scatter. Otherwise Midas is almost guaranteed a goal if the ball ends somewhere on that quarter of the pitch, thanks to a 10" kick.

I was pretty proud of that Salt setting up Greyscales Snap Shot play though. Even if Compound had rolled decent with the Counter Charge, Salt's Close Control would have saved it. so really the only way to stop it was to hit 4 times for a KD (unlikely vs DEF 5+). I did make a mistake on the video saying I needed 4s to make the pass, it was really a 5 (Compound engaging Greyscales) which I got anyway.

Also happy with the way I conga lined the ball to Corsair using multiple players with no INF near the end. It gave me what I think was probably the best shot at preventing an Alchemist goal next turn given the circumstances. But Stent played better in the end and chipmunked his way to ultimate victory - I guess that's what relentless Guild Ball practice does to a man.

Nice to win something by popular vote over actually
deserving it.

So one pretty uneventful win, two really close loses. No Shark games at all - although he probably would have been a good choice when I was kicking. Good tournament - smoothly run with a relaxed schedule in a nice venue (my round 1 issues not withstanding) and I even won best painted! God knows how that happened with a team literally covered in corpse paint.

Looking forward to benching the Fish for a couple of months and playing some Fillet / veteran Ox aka 'the Voice'! It'll make coming back to Fish even better after the Hag is out (Hag + Siren seems wrong).