As I've finally finished painting the Collodi starter box, I thought it was time to give Malifaux 2e a try. I arranged to pop down to Dark Sphere on a Tuesday night, where there's a thriving Malifaux community. It's also where you might be able to find some of the AbnorMALifaux crew, should you know the fell arts necessary to summon them.
So, I can scrap together a 30 soul stone crew with every model I have painted and assembled. We draw Squatter's Rights (capture at least two of five markers for a number of turns) as the Strategy. You get to pick two Schemes from a randomly generated list of five. I choose "Frame for Murder" and "Assassinate". This means I've sewn someone important up inside the Wicked Doll on the far right flank so if the Gremlins kill it, the Guild will come down hard on the green scum - and meanwhile, I'm trying to put a bunch of holes in Somer Tooth Jones. Clearly he made a nasty comment that shows he didn't appreciate the culture of puppet shows...
NOTE: Assassinate was a terrible decision from a tactical point of view. I should totally have picked a different option.
The coloured tokens you see are to keep track of which model is which, kindly loaned to me by my opponent. Here is my force of Wicked Dolls on the left flank.
A learning point: My opponent had some old metals too, and he'd taped replacement pictures over the relevant cards for his models. I may have to follow his lead...
I start off running the Wicked Doll for "Frame for Murder" off on his own, making it look like he's aiming to take control of a Strategy marker on the weak side of the board.
Meanwhile the Wicked Dolls potter up the left flank. Malifaux has you take it in turns to move a model (with a few exceptions, written on the cards themselves). There are beautifully painted Gremlins moving in response to these moves, but I didn't take enough photos...
While Collodi and his Marionettes head up the centre. I'm already realising that Collodi has all sorts of clever "activate stuff in this order" nonsense which I don't yet understand. My hope of victory in this game is pretty slim.
A giant mosquito buzzes over to cause trouble - I need to kill it because it has a nasty trick that turns off "triggers" - a type of power that you get with a really good card draw, that Collodi and his crew seem to have a lot of.
One of the Wicked Dolls claims one of the Squatter's Rights scheme markers.
Mosquito dead, objective claimed in the centre, and Wicked Doll swung right out to the left to claim me some more markers.
A Gremlin helpfully shoots the Wicked Doll into a pile of scrap, is Framed For Murder, but claims the Squatter's Rights Scheme Marker back.
If yo look closely up towards the top you'll see a Gremlin in a fight with a Marionette, while I claim the two left hand Scheme markers.
A Mosquito kills my puppet, and activates a trigger to make a new giant Mosquito. Nooo!!!
In revenge, I take the scrap pieces from the dead Marionette, and sew them up into a Wicked Doll.
A piglet charges into a Wicked Doll on the left and reduces it to Scrap. Collodi is shot up by Gremlin shotguns and is running out of puppets to toss in the way.
Eventually, I'm left cowering in the corner and a shotgun blast takes out everyone in a final shot.
Interestingly, the game doesn't finish at this point! You keep playing, and I'd scored quite a few points. My opponent was successful in scoring more than me to win the game, but it's interesting that you can lose all your models and still have a convincing win, as long as you have the right Schemes and Strategies.