In late January, I attended an Age of Sigmar tournament. Now that isn’t too noteworthy, but this event was Call to Glory 2023. As far as I know, it is the largest Age of Sigmar event in the southern hemisphere, with over 200 players registered! I had an absolute blast of weekend, so decided to do a proper writeup off it, rather than just a quick post.
Now, anyone who knows me, knows I’ve been playing Seraphon for my entire Age of Sigmar experience. This was mainly because I already had some of the models ready to go when I started, but I’ve always been a fan of the lizardmen, since back in my fantasy days. But recently I’ve been craving a change, so I decided that this would be there last hurrah for a while. I also really wanted to use the Krondspine proxy that I got printed, so forced myself to write a list that used that model. It wasn’t a hard choice, as Krondspine is very powerful, but taking him did mean that my list building was quite restricted. The list I settled on was much more competitive than I usually play, but I figured if I was going to go hard, I’d go all the way.
– Constellation: Fangs of Sotek
– Grand Strategy: Take What’s Theirs
- Triumphs: Inspired
Slann Starmaster (285)*
- Command Trait: Arcane Might
- Spell: Stellar Tempest
Skink Starpriest (130)*
- Spell: Hand of Glory
Saurus Astrolith Bearer (155)*
- Artefact: Serpent God Dagger
30 x Skinks (225)*
- Boltspitters & Moonstone Clubs
- Reinforced x 2
10 x Skinks (75)*
- Boltspitters Celestite Daggers & Star Bucklers
10 x Skinks (75)*
- Boltspitters Celestite Daggers & Star Bucklers
2 x Salamander Hunting Pack (280)*
- Reinforced x 1
2 x Salamander Hunting Pack (280)*
- Reinforced x 1
Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (480)*
Total: 1985 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 4 / 4
Allies: 480 / 400
This list is an absolute powerhouse. It has some amazing magical support and pressure from the Slann, Astrolith, and Starpriest, whilst having some ridiculous shooting and, with Krondspine, a really powerful anvil and combat presence. Combine that with Seraphon’s almost unparalleled mobility with teleporting and summoning, and you’ve got yourself a list. And so, let’s get into the games!
Round 1 – Nicole – Nighthaunt – Prize of Gallet
Now, I have a real problem when I travel for a tournament, and it’s that I usually end up playing someone from the local scene for the first round. And that’s exactly what happened. Disappointing, but I always have a fun time playing against Nicole, so I wasn’t too unhappy. She is a well-known Nighthaunt player, and our last game was ridiculously close, so I was looking forward to a rematch.
Her list was built around two big units, one of Dreadsycthe Harridans, and one of Grimghast Reapers. She had a couple of small units of Chainrasps, some Spirit Hosts, and a big unit of Banshees. Rounding out the list was Lady Olynder, a Cruciator, a Guardian of Souls, and a Spirit Torment with some Chainghasts.
We both deployed centrally, with my bunkering everything around my pyramid, and Nicole setting up a solid core of her heroes, flanked by both big units. Her Chainrasps were spread out to screen and stop some teleports, with Olynder and the Spirit Hosts vanishing to prepare an ambush. As my list was a one drop, I gave her first turn.
Nicole knew that charging across the board was a mistake, so moved her bunker forward all together. Her Dreadscythes tagged the active objective, whilst her Chainrasps moved to better screens the flanks and rear. Unfortunately for her, there was a large piece of terrain that she ended up having cluster around.
My dice were ridiculously hot for my first turn. Between a Comet’s Call from the Slann, and the Realmshaper targeting the terrain Nicole’s army was on, most of her heroes ended up either dead, or heavily wounded. I then did some more damage with the salamanders shooting, with one unit teleporting to get into a better position. Between the salamanders and skinks shooting, and a few spells, most of the Dreadscythes were killed.
I won the priority roll for turn two and continued pushing across the table. Between another round of spells and the Realmshaper activating again meant that Nicole lost the rest of her heroes this turn. Then after a quick teleport, a unit of salamanders got into her backline, and with the rest of my shooting killed off the Dreadscythes and a unit of Chainrasps. Then Krondspine made his charge, and ate the rest of the Grimghast Reapears, and really locked down the centre. Nicole had her back to the wall at this point but continued regardless. She summoned Lady Olynder and the Spirit Hosts and used them to put some pressure on my backline, but they only killed a couple of skinks.
Nicole got the double into turn three, but a disappointing charge phase meant that she only killed a small unit of skinks. Olynder and her Spirit Hosts were threatening my Realmshaper, but with a teleport and a big charge roll, I was able to bring most of my army to bear on them and ended the game.
After the game we chatted, and agreed that this was going to be a rough game for Nicole, with Krondspine shutting down so much of her army’s power and flexibility. My dice rolling ridiculously hot early didn’t help matters in the slightest, and without her support heroes, there wasn’t that much she could do. But Nicole is always a fantastic opponent, so it was a great first game of the tournament.
Round 2 – Dean – Soulblight – Realmstone Cache
So hot off a win in Round One, I’m feeling good. I always find the first round sets the tone for my performance at a tournament, so I was keen to get into Round Two. My opponent was Dean, who was playing Soulblight Gravelords. I was pretty okay with this, two of the local guys I play regularly play them, so I was fairly familiar with how they all work.
Dean was playing Legion of Night, with Mannfred, a Necromancer, and a Vampire Lord. Supporting his three heroes were a big unit of Skeletons, a small unit of Skeletons, some Dire Wolves, some Black Knights, two units of Blood Knights, and a big unit of Grave Guard.
Dean deployed some of his army in centrally on the board, with each flank covered from some knights. He had both his units of Skeletons, the Grave Guard, and a unit of Blood Knights, ambushing in, either from a gravesite, or via a board edge. I deployed everything bunkered around the realmshaper again, with both sides screened out from any ambushing shenanigans. Once again, the one drop gave me the option, so I gave first turn to Dean.
Dean moved up aggressively with the Dire wolves, claiming the objective, whilst Knights spread out to their respective flanks. Mannfred moved up to support the Blood Knights, and the other heroes moved out to limit my teleporting options. With no combat or shooting, it was a very quick turn. My turn saw some a Salamander unit teleport to snipe out the Vampire lord, whilst chip damage was done to Mannfred and the Blood Knights. Krondspine made a big charge to get into the Dire Wolves, and he subsequently ate them, to claim the objective back.
Dean won the roll for priority and elected to take it, otherwise Krondspine would have been munching on the Blood Knights. He brought a big unit of skeletons up in his backline, to help protect the Necromancer, whilst the Black Knights moved to engage the recently teleported Salamanders. Mannfred and the Blood Knight both moved up to face off against the rest of my forces. Mannfred and the Blood Knights charged in, and killed my other Salamander unit, and killed quite a few skinks as well. The Black Knights and the restored Dire Wolves charged into the other Salamanders, and killed all the handlers, but failed to kill one of them. My turn saw more chip damage on everything, but quite a bit was thrown at Mannfred. And after a big shooting phase, saw the Lord of Night himself ended permanently, as well as the unit of Blood Knights with him. Krondspine charged off and into the big unit of Skeletons, destroying the bony warriors.
Dean won the priority again, and the rest of his reserves were brought in, with more Blood Knights on the flank, and skeletons of the other. The Black Knight pressured on flank, whilst a horde of undead threatened the other. In my turn, I knew I had to keep the pressure on. I’ve seen how easily the game could turn if Dean made a couple of important rolls to bring units back, so I couldn’t let up at all. Krondspine came back to threaten the reserves, whilst the rest of my shooting was brought to bear on the other flank. After the dust had cleared, the Black Knight were severely reduced, and Krondspine has imposed himself between the remaining Grave Guard and Blood Knights, and the rest of my army.
I won the priority in turn four, and that sealed the game. Between my magic and shooting, the rest of Dean’s forces were killed, with the Grave Guard being left alone to be dealt with by Krondspine. We talked out the next couple of turns, and made a couple of important dice rolls, but it ended with another victory to the lizards!
I love and hate playing against Soulblight, at least have experience into them, but I know that you can’t let up at all. Dean took the beating like a champion, and losing both Mannfred and the Blood Knights in a turn was brutal and really the game-defining point. He kept playing until right up until the end, and I have nothing but respect for him after that game.
Round 3 – Kieron – Skaven – Close to the Chest
Okay, so two wins down, only one more game left for day one. Unfortunately, I got matched up against Kieron, who was playing Skaven. Not that I didn’t like him, it actually was his birthday, and he was a great opponent, but Skaven is one of those factions I have very little experience against. I was sweating bullets because I just knew that I couldn’t rely on experience for this game, it would come down to skill and luck.
Kieron had a very aggressive list from my perspective. Thanquol backed up by an Engineer and an Arch-Warlock were the heroes, and these were supporting a big unit of Stormfiends, some Clanrats, some Gutter Runners, a few Skyre Acolytes, and two Warp Lightning Cannons.
I deployed in my usual bunker, which was slightly limited due to some dense terrain on my side of the table, with the screens going quite far out and a Salamander unit a little vulnerable. Kieron deployed very aggressively, with both cannons lined up against one of my screens, and his Arch-Warlock and the Skyre Acolytes threatening that flank. I gave Kieron first turn, hoping to whether the storm.
Kieron started with moving up defensively. He was definitely worried about Krondspine locking down either the Stormfiends or Thanquol, so both stayed well back, and outside of Krondspine’s threat. The Arch-Warlock and his Acolytes moved up quite far, really threatening one flank, whilst the gutter runners appeared and threatened the other. Kieron’s shooting phase started with a bang, quite literally as one the Warp Lightning Cannons exploded whilst wiping out a small unit of Skinks. The gutter runners wiped out the other small unit of Skinks, depriving me of screens completely. My turn started and knew I needed to get the tempo of the game back under my control. I moved most of my army up to start threatening Kieron, with one unit of Salamanders teleporting behind his lines. They almost got the remaining Warp Lightning Cannon, leaving it on 1 wound. The other Salamanders targeted the Arch-Warlock and melted him away. Unfortunately, the skinks couldn’t shoot anything, as a smart redeploy from Kieron, saw them without any targets in range. With Krondspine out of range for the charge, I ended the turn.
And I got the double! Kieron was definitely sweating bullets at this point, as the double turn saw me remove the Gutter Runners, and the remaining Cannon with a combination of magic and shooting. I also teleported some Salamanders near Thanquol and put a good chunk of damage on him. Then Krondspine charged into the Stormfiends, and killed 4 outright, although he did lose a level in the process. After that turn Kieron was happy to call it, as there wasn’t too much left that he could do.
I felt a bad calling it so early, but my list did exactly what I had built it to do. Go second, and with a devasting double turn secure me the game. Kieron was a trooper, and despite taking hits left, right and center, still was a wonderful opponent.
Round 4 – Dave – Kruelboyz – Nidus Paths
Day Two, haven’t made a mistake yet. I was feeling pretty good going into day two. I haven’t messed up yet, and my overall goal was a 4-1, so definitely within my grasp. Then I saw I was matched up against Dave, and I knew this was going to be a tough game. Dave was running Kruelboyz, as a bit of a challenge to himself, but I had seen him play them at other events recently, and do quite well, so this wasn’t going to be easy. I knew that I would only need to make a couple of mistakes for Dave to get ahead and his experience meant that it would be unlikely that he would be returning that favour.
His list had a Killaboss on Vulture, Killaboss on Gnashtoof, a couple of Shamans, two units of Gutrippas, three units of Hobgrots, and two unit of reinforced Boltboys.
I deployed quite aggressively with Krondspine, as I knew Dave would be able to easily knock a level off before he got to combat, whilst the rest of my army was behind him. Dave deployed very defensively, with everything important going behind an impressive number of screens. I gave Dave first turn, and we began the game in earnest.
Dave began his turn with moving his screens out to lock down the objectives. I thought I had a great counterplay and redeployed my Krondspine to stop his battle tactic (Desecrate their lands) and thought I was a genius, until I remembered his Hobgrots were in “Expert Conquerors” and all I had done was waste a command point. He then proceeded to knock a level off Krondspine with some accurate Boltboyz shooting and passed the turn. My first turn had one objective, killed those Boltboyz. If I left them alive then they would most likely kill Krondspine before he could achieve anything, so I teleported a unit of Salamanders near one unit and moved the rest of my forces to face off against the other. My dice absolutely exploded in the shooting phase, with the entire unit being melted by the Salamanders. The other unit was mostly out of range, so didn’t take many casualties, so a few Hobgrots and Gutrippas are targeted instead.
Dave won priority going into turn two and took it. He moved up his Gutrippas to pin down my smaller skink units, and the boltboyz into range of the Salamanders in the centre. His Gnashtoof moved over to counter the Salamanders in the backfield, whilst the rest of his force ambled up. Unfortunately for Dave he had some bad dice in both the shooting and combat phase, with both units of Salamanders surviving with minimal casualties. He did kill off the skink units, but they weren’t the big threat. My turn saw the Gnashtoof killed with some magical support, and then everything was targeted into the rest of Dave’s Boltboyz. After the shooting phase, the remaining Boltboyz, as well as more of the Gutrippas and Hobgrots that were threatening me were all dealt with. Krondspine had moved up into the centre of the board to threaten the rest of Dave’s forces.
I got the double into turn three, and immediately took it. A big turn here could see the tempo of the game drastically swing into my favour. A unit of Salamanders were teleported behind Dave’s lines, and they did some considerable damage to his Killaboss on Vulture, while the rest of my shooting cleaned up the remaining units near me. Krondspine moved up to finish off the Vulture, but failed the charge, so the Salamander went in. With a lucky charge and some spiky dice, they ended the bird.
Dave then conceded, as he really didn’t have much left to be able to play out the game. A couple of big rolls early for me really got me up on attrition and swung the game into my favour.
Round 5 – Matt – Stormcast – The Silksteel Nests
Okay, final game, and the chance to go undefeated. No pressure. I haven’t gone undefeated at a big AoS tournament before, so I was feeling the nerves. And when I saw my opponent was Matt, they double downed. I’ve seen Matt play a lot, and I knew his list fairly well. We actually were discussing it and its matchups at the airport waiting for our flight. After we found our table, we both agreed that this game would come down to a few really important rolls. The only blessing to playing Matt, was that I was playing Matt, he’s a pretty nice guy, and I knew that I was in for a good clean game. But despite how friendly Matt is, his list was anything but.
Matt was running 11 Stormcast dragons. That’s it, he had the Knight Draconis as his general, then two units of four dragons, and one unit of 2 dragons. Nice and simple, and an absolute nightmare for opponents.
Matt won the first important roll, deployment. Since we were both a one-drop list, then whoever won this roll could choose who went first. Matt won it and deployed his little unit and character in one corner, with the other two big units going into the sky to ambush me later. I deployed defensively overall, with one exception. I placed a unit of Salamanders within range of this unit. This caused him all kinds of issues, as before I did that, he was confident in giving me first and then counter punching. He ended up giving me first turn, figuring he could whether the firestorm.
So, I went first and played passively. Screens went out, Krondspine moved up, but nothing to crazy, except for the Salamanders. One unit was in range, and the other was teleported, so I could get 4 Salamanders into his small unit. I was hoping to kill one, as that meant that next turn, I had a much higher chance of surviving. Unfortunately, my dice failed me, and I did a total of 6 damage. Matt then started his turn, with both his small unit and character moving up to killed off the Salamanders, whilst both big units dropped out of the sky to threaten my castle. Luck was on Matt’s side this turn, as the little unit killed one Salamander unit, his character killed the other Salamander unit, and one of his big units made their charge and did considerable damage.
And then Matt got the double (this was the second, probably most important, roll of the game that we agreed would decide the game). His dragons converged and did an immense amount of damage. A lucky retreat from one unit of Skinks meant that his character got locked into combat with Krondspine, who then ate him. But apart from that, Matt dealt with most of my remaining forces, even destroying my Realmshaper. I knew I needed big plays to be able to stay in the game. I teleported my Slann to the other side of the table and summoned a unit of Skinks to tag another objective, whilst Krondspine made a big charge, and locked down one of the big units of dragons. He then ate one of them, and severely hurt another. We then held our breath for the priority roll.
Matt won priority again and took it to try and fully wipe me out . His other big unit of dragons flew back across the board to capture some objectives, whilst his little unit moved in on the Slann. A few fire breaths later and the frog is dead, the little unit is into the brand-new skinks, and my chances for winning are dwindling. The only plus side was that Krondspine ate another two dragons, freeing him up to hunt the rest of Matt’s army.
I managed to steal the priority here, but I was down to two models, Krondspine and a Skink Starpriest. Krondspine charged back across the board to get to the remaining big unit, whilst the Starpriest was teleported to grab back an objective. Krondspine made the charge, and ate another 2 dragons, locking them down properly this time. Matt’s counter play was stymied by a lucky pile in move, which negated him a battle tactic, whilst Krondspine ate the remaining two dragons.
I managed to win priority again for the final turn, and it ended quickly. The starpriest teleported onto another objective, whilst Krondspine moved to intercept Matt’s remaining little unit of dragons. He redeployed them, got lucky and got a 6, but Krondspine would not be denied, made the nine-inch charge, and put the last of the dragons in the ground.
After we calculated the final scores, it worked out that I had won by a measly three points.
This game was intense, there was never a roll that didn’t matter, never a decision that was easy. It was a fantastic game, and Matt was a fantastic opponent. We both were absolutely wrecked after that game, and it was exactly what I expected for a top table game at Cancon.
So, after an amazing weekend, I managed to place 4th out the 202 people who played. I’m still ecstatic about it, this is an achievement that I never thought I’d make, which has made it even more special. I’m pumped to have been able to play, and after 5 great games, I’m very happy with my performance. Unfortunately, I don’t think I’ll be repeating this anytime soon, as I told myself I’d switch over to a new army, but who knows. Maybe next year, I’ll manage the same feat with Sylvaneth?
Until Next Time,