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Old May 3rd, 2011, 12:41 PM
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Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Report)

Way back when I joined the site nearly four years ago, I was a bit annoyed that I started playing Heroscape just a month before GenCon. I had to live vicariously through battle reports. One that stuck out was spider's championship winning report from the year before. I really liked the Arrow Gruts, and tried to get them as soon as I could. I even wrote one of my first session reports involving them.

I eventually met Joe right before the TTO, and managed to beat him! But not in the tourney. He took it down the day of, while I went 4-2. I still had a bit to learn.

Not too long after, I tried out the Arrow Gruts in Austin, MN. It went terribly! I wasn't the only Arrow Grut player to do poorly. That and other things going on at the time convinced Joe to drop the Arrow Gruts from A all the way down to B+.

Fast forward a couple years later, and any kind of Grut Army, be it Heavy, Blade, or Arrow remain among my favorites to play, but I am often scared to take them to tourneys. They aren't as good as Stingers, Mass, Knights, and Q9, right? But then I sort of won two tourneys with Heavies in tow. Orcs can't be that bad.

So, in preparation for the Gamers Reunion, the first army that popped in to my mind was... wait for it... 5x 4th Massachusetts Line and Sgt. Drake II! I told my friend Kaboomboomboom to play it. He took 2nd place.

But the 2nd army I came up with was the Arrow Grut build that I took:

4x Arrow Gruts
Krug
Raelin
3x Swog Rider

Ice Troll Berserker

Which was exactly 520 points, taking up 22/24 spaces. The only difference between this and Joe's 2006 build was one extra squad of Gruts and the Ice Troll. I often advocate people having more swogs than this, but I figured with this many bonding options, it would make sense to have more Gruts around, just in case.

Since Kyle hadn't played scape since the TTO VI, and I hadn't played since my two games at that Warren HS/SW tourney, we decided to play a couple practice games on Hot Heights this Wednesday.

In the first game, I just crushed his Mass. I'm not entirely sure how it happened. He conceded about 20 minutes in. I had lost 1 arrow grut and Krug, while he had 5 guys and Drake left.

The second game was really close, essentially coming down to an initiative roll, or even the berserker charge roll immediately before it. Drake was on low ground (wound glyph) at the end of a round, while my fully healed Troll was one move away from getting a 6 on 4 on him (who only had 4 lives left). I lost the init. roll and got clobbered by Drake who grappled up.

The games showed me two things: 1. the army was still pretty competitive, and 2. the ITB was decent in the cleanup role.

Even still, I wasn't being too optimistic about my chances. I had my eyes on the Summoner Wars prize the next day. I just thought that it'd be fun to play Arrow Gruts.

Kyle and I hopped in my car at 8:45 PM Friday and rode off to Iowa City to meet up with Clarissimus and spider at his apartment. spider was already asleep, and we laid out our sleeping bags and moved furniture carefully and quietly at 1:00 AM so as not to wake anyone.

We woke up around 6:00 AM. In the car, Kyle made the prediction that out of the people in the car, we'd collectively go 16-4, and that one of us would win it all. Clarissimus then piped up, asserting that at least 2 of those 4 losses would be to each other. Despite our early start, we still ended up being kind of late to the show. (Around 10:26). As punishment for our tardiness (and to keep things going smoothly), we all had to play each other in the first round.



Me v. spider up top, Clarissimus and kaboomboomboom in the foreground.

Rather than extensive play-by-play analysis, I think I'll try to keep the actual report pretty short and highlight important points.

Round 1 - Searing Pass by Hasbro
Spider playing 4x Gladiatrons, 2x Blastatrons, Raelin

It's just the GenCon champ playing the army he last used to win the whole thing and go 9-0, and very similar to the army he used to go 5-0 when I did horribly with Arrow Gruts. Whatever.

He was super rusty. He hadn't played the game at all in the last 18 months. Apparently he has played Agricola a lot, and pwns at that, winning 43% of his 4 player games online.

Key plays- he used the Summoning glyph to pull my Raelin down to a watery death, but attacked her right way, instead of taking pot shots at low defense gruts or swogs. I used Krug early, and got him out there to do some business. I think he ultimately took out Krug, Raelin and about a squad of guys. I also recall being able to roll 10 dice- height + lots of rage, baby!

W (+280)
1-0 (+280)


Round 2 - Just Passing Through by Dignan
LeviOfDoom playing 4x Redcoats, Kaemon Awa, Syvarris

Krug is still a pimp, after all these years- he backhanded both Syvarris and plenty of Redcoats. Similar to the last game, I moved Krug up early to dispense some beat downs. It's a lesson I actually read in Joe's report from the top of this post. Against Redcoats and Mass, valiant or not, you want to get Krug in there so you can match them on numbers of attacks. 5 attacks of 2 per turn beats 4 of them, and Krug can engage lots of guys to take the heat off of your Gruts and Swogs (especially if you only have 3, as I did).

Late game, my swogs and arrows were able to pop around the map and get height advantaged shots to take down the Samurai hero for the win.

I forget what I had but I think it added up to 360. I think. I must have lost Krug and 1x squad of Arrows.

W (+ 360)
2-0 (+640)


Round 3 - ┐a road map?
Luke playing Nilfheim, Major Q9, 2x Deathreavers, James Murphy

KRUG SMASH!

He opened by putting 2 OM's on Deathreavers taking what turned out to be the Summoning Glyph (yoinking Raelin again) and the Brandar (dud/artifact) glyph.

Early to mid game, I actually took Nilfheim down just with some Arrow Gruts and Swogs from height. The first shot was probably particularly demoralizing, where I went 3/3 with an AG and Nilfheim whiffed his defense. He toughened up after that and took a round or two more to take out.

But then I sent Krug straight at Major metal pants.

At the end of the first round of their sparring match, I had only scored one wound on Q9, with exactly 5 wounds on Krug. Then it was a very important initiative roll.

Which I won. That was the game, right?

But on my first two attacks, I got 3/7 skulls and he blocked it easily on 8 dice.

Uh oh. Queglix time.



Cripes, that's the game!



6 wounds on Krug!



No. NO! NOOO!!!



Phew. Still alive. <--- Warning, Portal 1 spoiler.



Take a deep breath, roll the dice carefully...



YES!

My turn.





All his OM's were on Q9. Krug walked across the river and backhanded Murphy and then some rats. They tried to nibble at his ankles, but they failed to kill him, but did take down 3 swogs and a full squad of Arrow for points.

W (+405)
3-0 (+1045)


Round 4 - Searing Pass by Hasbro
Richard O. playing 4x Redcoats, Raelin, Marcus, Guilty McCreech

Richard had just beaten Kyle's Mass on Just Passing Through. Sounds like attack glyph + height + bayonet was brutal there. I had to get revenge for Team Elgin.

So I did.

I put my 1 on AG's, 2 on Raelin, and 3 on AG's.

1st move, I put Krug up on the plateau right away.

His first move was Marcus, moving him onto a little bump 4 spaces away from Raelin. Apparently he wasn't gonna move her at all.

I moved Raelin towards one of the glyphs, 4 spaces from it, but 8 spaces from Marcus so that a guy couldn't be adjacent to him and still WtF her. That'd be lame. My overall plan was to try to get height advantage as much as I can while pounding away with Krug.

The glyph on the non-raelin side turned out to be Crevcor. And I had no way to get on it, really. Next to Marcus and height and whatnot, they put 4 wounds on Krug in a hurry.

I charged Krug in and killed Marcus in two swings, while he missed a leaving engagement.

The glyph near Raelin turned out to be Brandar (dud). Awesome. I still had another attack left that OM, so I managed to take out the guy on the attack glyph with some 2 on 2's. That was a clutch turn. No one got on the Crevcor glyph for the rest of the game. Searing Pass makes it take 3 turns, even for 6-move squads.

From there, Krug stuck around long enough to help me get more arrows and swogs into position, and they did their thing. Raelin ended the game with just 2 wound markers, which is always a good sign- it means that she was a distraction and she boosted guys with her aura successfully.

W +360
4-0 (+1405)


Round 5 - a 1x TJ/ SotM map that I'll look up
Ben playing Acolarh, 4x Aubrien Archers, 2x Warriors of Ashra, Kyntela Gwyn, Isamu

Talk about an unlikely final. Final tables like this (in a field that included a 7x Stingers army, a 5x Mass army, a 4x rats/Q9/Krav/Raelin army, and spider's 4x glads/2x blasts/raelin army) show that you never know what'll happen at a tourney until you sit down and actually play the games.

Apparently Ben is Richard's friend, so it was his turn to try for some revenge. But it was not to be. This was the closest match of my day, and went on all the way to time, pretty much. They called for time and said do one more round just as we had finished a round, but he had just one Aubrien left at that point, so we decided we had to play it out, it was the Championship game, after all.

The ITB didn't quite get a charge roll to win it for me, but some AG's firing up from low ground sealed the deal. Got that whiff.

This game was actually really interesting with a lot of tactical choices to make when it came to height, jungle, and who to strike, to the point that it'd take me quite some time to list them all. There was an interesting push and pull between the AA's and AG's, and I was in constant fear that the WoA would lock the game down at the end with their Defensive Agility. His dice went cold at the end and I won by a mere 190 points (just 4 AG's, an ITB, and a Swog left).

W +190
5-0 (+1595) 1st out of 40


Thanks a bunch for hosting the tourney and weekend, Jormi and Darkwind! Winning a trip to this year's TTO means I guess I have to go again, huh?


Quote:
Originally Posted by fomox View Post
(I've also played many matches with great, fun people who were using Q9. So using Q9 doesn't make you a tool. But being a tool sure seems to make you use Q9.)

Last edited by Jexik; May 3rd, 2011 at 09:07 PM.
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 12:54 PM
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Re: Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Repo

Long before I found any online sites, the AGs were my favorite, esp. with Krug. I've learned a lot since then (though I'm still mostly an enthusiast rather than a strategist, I'll admit), but I still love these guys. So glad to see they can still own the maps. Nicely done, Jexik.
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 01:54 PM
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Re: Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Repo

That championship match against you was one of my favorites I've ever played in a tourney. I was expecting Acolarh and his buddies to get crushed, but I was happy to see it ended up being as close as it was. Congrats on the win, and it was great finally getting to play you. I'll eagerly be awaiting a rematch.

Last edited by PCServbot; May 3rd, 2011 at 06:06 PM.
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 05:25 PM
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Re: Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Repo

Just when I was thinking of bringing a Krug + Arrow Grut army to a tourney, you go ahead and steal all the glory. Now I won't look as cool if I win.

My version of the army was completely different though, so I still might do it. It was a combo of Krug + Cyprien and Sonya + Arrow Gruts just for bonding really... It`s a very Hero based army but my tournament scene has a lot of Nilfhiem`s in it, who Cyprien can eat for dinner and some Q9`s which Krug can back hand.

Also, I started to notice the armies in my tournaments to not be so competitive, so this army can do better in Toronto than anywhere else I think.

Anyway, Congrats, I`m glad to see your still alive and kickin`it.
(in Heroscape at least, I know your kickin`the hell outta SW)

I Came, I Dropped, I Conquered.
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 05:31 PM
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Re: Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Repo

What the?...a spider sighting?

I love me some Arrow Gruts; that army actually works for the parameters in the up coming Richardson Open here in Texas...

hmmm......

Congrats on the big win, Jexik!!

A must read for all 'Scapers!

Last edited by R chean; May 3rd, 2011 at 05:33 PM. Reason: though I am much more likely to go with Kaboomboomboom's army
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 09:01 PM
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Re: Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Repo

Thankyaverymuch.
(For showing me that me and my comrades-in-arms still get play in tournaments by big leaugers such as yourself.)

Mimring>Krug. 'Nuff said.

Last edited by Arrow Grut; May 3rd, 2011 at 09:02 PM. Reason: That, and it helps you won...
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Old May 4th, 2011, 07:31 AM
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Re: Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Repo

What James won't tell you is that testing took forever because every time he moved the ice troll he got up to do the hammerslide.
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Old May 4th, 2011, 05:38 PM
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Re: Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Repo

Nice report.
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Old May 4th, 2011, 09:16 PM
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Re: Arrow Gruts Still Alive and Kickin' (Gamers Reunion Repo

Quote:
Originally Posted by KaBoomboomBoom View Post
What James won't tell you is that testing took forever because every time he moved the ice troll he got up to do the hammerslide.
Arrow gruts are too legit to quit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fomox View Post
(I've also played many matches with great, fun people who were using Q9. So using Q9 doesn't make you a tool. But being a tool sure seems to make you use Q9.)
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