Hex and Boon Tournament Re-Cap
Updated: Aug 21, 2020
This was my second attempt at Godtear tournament play. In my first tournament, I went 2-2, winning the first two and losing the final two matches. Being in the 2-0 bracket meant that I got to see how some of the better players operated, though, and I was determined to learn form that experience.
We were asked to compose our list from the Godtear Arena Final list on Tabletopia. This means that our choices were: Rangosh, Lorsann, Titus, Grimgut, Halftusk, Rodhri, Mourneblade, Nia, Raith’Marid, and Shayle.
The game that stuck with me most from the previous tournament was against the gentleman who won the first two online tournaments. In it, he played a double slayer lineup. In another post, I have argued that two slayers are better than one, and this game was formative for my belief that this is so. The entire game against a double-slayer lineup, I felt like I was under constant pressure and that each of my choices was risky. In putting together my list for Hex and Boon, I decided to see what it was like to make other people feel that way.
Here’s was my thought process in putting together the list:
If I’m committed to playing two slayers, I guess I have to take the two available. Not that I mind…
Rangosh - If you want to slay, he is the best. Mobility, huge attacks, plot phase damage, the big guy has it all. He is one of the best champions in the game. I have not yet put Keera on the table, so I don’t know if Rangosh is the best slayer, but he’s got to be in the conversation. The Red Bandits are also more than Brutal Master food because plot phase damage and range 3 attacks are both very impactful things.
Lorsann - She is very subtly powerful. I’ve heard some debate about her, but I am squarely in the pro-Lorsann camp. Range 3 attacks are a big deal. She can attack twice and move two hexes in the clash phase, which makes her very efficient. Yes, she tends to kill followers sometimes, but that’s not a bad thing. She’s also great at pressuring champions with low health pools, and I was expecting a bit of Titus and Shayle. The Misties are a very specialized but very effective gun platform.
With my slayers in hand, I now have to consider how best to support them. Essentially, I was creating two lists which each would have Lorsann and Rangosh. To this end, I chose two more champions who would give me different tools to adjust to scenarios.
Raith’Marid - He’s just good. The most mobile champion in the game also has the best ultimate. For scenarios where the objective is to hold ground, he is tremendously disruptive. Most people think he’s the most powerful champion. I think that’s overstating it, but we all know he is very good.
Mourneblade - I had not actually used Mourneblade much, and I wanted to get a bit of experience with him. His toolkit is a fascinating combination of indifference to being KO’d, ranged banner placement, and movement control. I figured his Knightshades would be a good way to keep maelstroms off of my ranged minions and that his ranged banners would be useful in scenarios that called for speeding out. He brings yet more ranged attacking to the list as well.
Here are my best recollections of how the games went. I might be getting some of this wrong, as I lacked the presence of mind to take notes and screenshots along the way (I’ll do better in the future). I have more to say about the last round because it was the most recent; we were playing one game per week.
Round 1 - Death
I played into an excellent gentleman from Texas. He brought Rangosh, Raith, and Titus. I brought Rangosh, Raith, and Mourneblade. It was almost a mirror! I thought it would be a good idea to use the nightshades to try to control Titus. It was not; he simply feasted on the nightshades for points. However, I have a long tradition of one-shooting Titus with Rangosh, and that tradition continued here. I was a bit too cute in this game about spreading around wounds in the hopes of “cashing in” in crucial future turns. My opponent ended up scoring in ways I didn’t expect, and I nearly lost turn 2 as a result of this. In the future, I decided I would take kills when I could and not take turns for granted. Still, I did manage to pull this one out by winning turns 2 and 3.
Lifetime Tournament Record: 3-2
Round 2 - Life
I was matched up with the excellent host of the Clash and Claim podcast (he also does Schemes and Stones). I took Rangosh, Lorsann, and Raith’Marid. He took Halftusk, Titus, and Raith’Marid. This game was a bit silly because my dice were positively on fire. I think I played fairly well, but sweet Rodhri’s beard, I just could not stop rolling doubles. My opponent did forget that he should place banners instead of purely repositioning for kills, though. After I won turn 2, my opponent grew some hexes on his side of the board only to ignore them by charging into me during the plot phase. I snuck Raith’Marid behind him and scored for the win.
Lifetime Tournament Record: 4-2
Round 3 - Knowledge
Going into this, my opponent and I were the only 2-0 players left, which I think was a bit flukey given the size of the tournament. My opponent mentioned that he had only played a game or two prior to the tournament, which is awesome. Kudos to him for getting to the final table on his first try. I think it also speaks thaw new this game still is and how much we are all still figuring it out. I took Rangosh, Lorsann, and Mourneblade. He took Titus, Shayle, and Mourneblade.
I won turn 1. He chose to go first at the top of turn 2 and trapped Rangosh, Lorsann, the Red Bandits and the Mistwood Rangers with the Nightshades. Yikes. My inexperience with Mourneblade had put me in a pretty bad position heading into my turn 2 clash phase. Lorsann and Rangosh could not get to the objectives (or his banners), and the minions were about to be puree’d by Titus.
I decided to be a bit wild. After the Bandits failed their ambush attempt (because of course), I burned Rangosh’s and Lorsann’s ultimates killing the nightshades. This lat me stomp banners and get back into the turn. It was a very expensive plot phase and I had not done any damage to champions despite blowing two slayer utlimates, but I was back in the turn despite my mistake.
This somewhat risky maneuver by me also created a fascinating opportunity. Believing himself more or less free to maneuver because I was pinned down, he had thrown Landslide all the way downfield, leaving Shayle outside of Runecaller range.
Perhaps fearing that Rangosh might one-shot Titus if he did not, my opponent activated Mr. Swordey McSworderson first and ulted all over my minions’ faces. There were elf and bandit parts everywhere. Titus was wearing what Piece Hal might have called “A garment all of blood.”
Shayle was still out of range to move Landslide. Bowing my THIRD ultimate of the turn, I surrounded Shayle with Nightshades. This both made Mourneblade’s banner unreachable and neutralized 1/3 of my opponent’s forces. Still, the turn was not a sure thing. If my opponent could kill anything, I would need to take out Titus with Rangosh in order to claim the turn. I did not think my odds of this were bad since Rangosh had two Bandits in range and a damage boon with Titus already adjacent.
Then dice things happened. My opponent killed nothing. Then I missed Titus twice. I won turn two, but barely.
Turn Three was a bloody affair. Rangosh kicked things off in the clash phase by one-shooting Titus (re-establishng the tradition).The Glory Seekers managed to free up Shayle with a combination of Roar of Battle and surround pounding a Knightshade. My opponent’s hopes to win rested on getting shale back in Range of Landslide and allowing Landslide to kill someone. He never got a chance, though, because I recognized this, moved Mourneblade next to Shayle, Soul-cleaved a Glory Seeker, and used the hit effect from Soul Cleave to recruit a new Knightshade next to the little Wizard.
Lifetime Tournament Record: 5-2
I was lucky to eke this out. It was incredibly fun. We have a really nice community emerging around this game, and I truly hope that continues. Everyone I played in both of my tournaments so far was just aces in terms of sportsmanship, scheduling, and overall awesomeness. If you are on the fence about tournament play, I highly encourage you to try it. You’ll find a warm, inviting atmosphere and some good competition.
Thanks for Reading!