It was quite a strange feeling facing a master you consider your own; a master you've learned inside-out and have great affection for. Last night my Kirai crew got to face Perdita for a totally different experience to normal – Fugs didn't have his models with him so had the choice of any of my Guild army.
Everything is a little bit of a blur. We had a very small window of opportunity in which to have a game last night, so we flew through it. Despite Fugs not playing any Guild models before, he had faced them often enough so knew their potential.
He flipped Reconnoiter for his Strategy and took Kill Protegee and Perdita's specific Schemes. His final choice for crew consisted of Perdita, Enslaved Nephilim, Abuela Ortega, Papa Loco, Watcher and 3x Witchling Stalkers.
|Sneaky, sneaky guild|
I flipped Turf War for Strategy and decided upon Stake a Claim and Grudge (Papa Loco). My crew lineup looked familiar – Kirai, Lost Love, Datsue-Ba, Desperate Merc, Canine Remains, 2x Insidious Madness, 3x Seishin. The Guild opponents have quite high WP, Perdita being Immune to Influence so I would not need the Insidious Madness for the usual negative WP flips (though this was still viable). I decided to include them for their low cost and speed. If I could get them into Fugs deployment zone they would provide a strong distraction – if he didn't kill them he would potentially be handing me 2VP on a plate. I had chosen a wood near his deployment zone for Stake a Claim, and Papa was the obvious choice for Grudge given the damage he could do to my grouped spirits.
I was both confident and wary going into this game, knowing the enemy models as I do. As luck would have it the cards were largely on my side, getting the Black Joker in my hand in the first turn as well as FOUR crows and a mask. I did only have one card higher than an 8 but that was not so much of an issue early on.
|Kirai, flanked by her bodyguard Seishin, surveys the battle|
The game started with me doing my summoning and the dog and merc continuing their 'Looney Tunes' style beating on each other. I managed to summon Ikiryo (for no reason other than I could and I wanted to lose the summoning Slow in time for turn 2) as well as a Shikome who homed in on the Watcher who was perched on top of a building in the middle of the board. He died, much to Fugs disappointment, and the rest of the Guild shuffled forwards.
Turn 2 saw Papa Loco Obeyed forward into the ruined warehouse, he then moved forward to just a few inches away from (which was a mistake by Fugs who should have Obeyed him a second and even a third time into position, leaving Papa his activation in tact). Perdita lurked in the background covering the warehouse in case of any intrusions.
This threat was a little close to home and I had Datsue-Ba Guide my Gaki (who was Slow due to summon) through the wall next to Papa. Perdita charged in but, thanks to some solid Defensive flips and a Corpse Counter, failed to kill him off. Kirai summoned a second Shikome into base contact with Perdita and the first Shikome moved in to attack the Guild master. Despite multiple plus flips on the attack the combined Shikome attacks failed to wound Perdita at all, although Fugs had expended most of his control hand and a Soulstone or two. The Gaki hit Papa for no result, then I moved Ikiryo through the wall and hit Papa a couple of times for 4 wounds or so. I was a little underwhelmed by the result but was still in a commanding position.
|The turning point of the game|
Turn 3 saw me win initiative, despite Fug flipping an 11. Ikiryo punched Papa who exploded causing all kinds of chaos, inflicting wounds everywhere and killing the Gaki. Perdita, intent on revenge, turned and killed off one Shikome then inflicted more wounds on the other. The Shikome was swirled away for healing, being replaced by Datsue-Ba who only managed to inflict 1 wound on Perdita. Another Shikome was summoned into melee with Perdita, and it was pretty much over. Perdita dropped leaving the Guild master-less. In the mean time, all this carnage had refilled Kirai's Seishin count and wounds.
We finished off turn 3 and, with a few minutes remaining, dived into turn 4. Abuela blew a few holes in Ikiryo but failed to kill him. On the other side of the warehouse wall two of the Witchlings had engaged the Onryo, with wounds dealt out on both sides. The wounded Shikome then moved in and finished off one of the Witchlings, who inflicted additional wounds all round when he exploded.
At this point, half way through turn 4, we had run out of time and we called it. The two Insidious Madness were sitting pretty in Fug's deployment zone, well out of reach, and the Guild had lost their master. Kirai was in a 6-0 winning position, with 2 more VP easily achieveable. The Guild survivors had a potential 2vp and another, somewhat unlikely, 4vp possible but the game was essentially over.
|The birds just keep coming…|
The Kirai summoning machine had achieved another victory – I'll take them all. Despite the fact that Fugs was playing with a crew he didn't know, I was quite pleased with the way things went. I had a plan to achieve my VPs and that went pretty much as hoped. Whilst I don't think I learned anything new about Kirai (aside from Datsue really is all or nothing) my gameplay was nicely underlined and I felt confident in my decision making. It was a very pleasant change facing a different master, but the signs are that Lilith will make her return next week, with the Nephilim twins, so that will be a totally different challenge indeed.