My FLGS (The Foundry in Huntsville, Alabama) had a mini tournament this weekend....but lets rewind a bit for the full story.
During the Flames of War Tournament last month I organized last month I was talking with Bethany (Store Owners wife and Malifaux aficionado) while the games were going. She mentioned that there was a mini tournament that was noob friendly and that I should come out and play.
I had always viewed Malifaux as that "Wierd" game (It is a Wyrd game since they are the publishers of it) with really cool models. I have a passing interest in Steam Punk....but Bethany's enthusiasm was infectious and she spurred by interest so that the next week I borrowed a rulebook (Big mistake I know!!!!!!) Add to that the store has made some cool terrain for the game...first off is thier village board:
Well... I got hooked on the fluff and the weirdness (or wyrdness) of the game made since. The game blends steam punk with daemons with zombies with goblins with cowboys....and soon with martial artists! The mechanics are really slick. No dice...random actions are determined by a deck of cards and deck manipulation is a big part of the game. Each model is a character with special abilities and triggers based on the card suites. Every faction and crew has a very distinct flavor and character. I have to say it was a lot of fun.
Fast forward to this weekend...the Mini tournament. I learned a lot about running a tournament. Tera (The lead organizer) and Bethany did a great job. The prizes were themed and very slick. There were 3 "qualifying rounds" and the top four of those went to the semi finals and the top two would play a final match on a new board (sewer board) made just for the tournament. The games played also went to Wyrd's Dead Heat campaign.
Well, suffice to say I was nervous. This was my first tournament playing since 1990 (Yes I am an old fart). I ran the Perdita Ortega crew...a cowboy themed crew with a hot chick leading her family. Lots of shootie goodness.
My first game was against Alex and a Seamus crew (Think undead pimp and hooker zombies). Great opponent and surprise surprise...I won. It boiled down to an initiative flip. Who one that flip would get first action and have the first chance to win...I got the initiative and won my attack.
My Second game was against Angel...she ran a Victoria's crew. Think steam punk street gang lead by twin girls with swords...but are they REALLY twins? She was a lot of fun to play against and it was another close one. Malifaux is all about your missions...not necessarily killing the other crew. This mission was "Destroy the Evidence" where there are 3 objectives on my side that she has to destroy, 3 on her side for me and one in the middle for both of us. she got the middle on and the 2 closest in my side REAL quick and I thought that was it. But we still had 4 turns for sure (game ends at 6 turns unless the last person moving wants to go longer and flips a high card each turn thereafter). My shootie crew started and I got some really good damage flips and cleared out enough of her crew so my guys could make a break for the objectives. I got the overall mission (Strategy) and my 2 side missions (Schemes)...I won again.
My third mission was against Will who ran the same crew as Angel. Hers was a quick and agile force, his was a beefy smash in your face version. He was great player and am still reeling over the beating. but get this....We are tied for third place...and we both advance to the semi finals.
Next game was versus Mike who ran Perdita as well. Great opponent and I learned a lot from him...special thanks to him for taking time to teach along the way. Our mission was "Deliver the Message" where one of your characters has to be adjacent to the other team's leader for a full turn. It boiled down to we killed everything off except our leaders and they weren't going near the other one, but he was able to get one of his secondary missions (Called Schemes) and he went on to the finals.
At this point final totals were tallied and Angel won best theme (She also dressed up to match her crew), I got best Sportsman and cool themed leather ledger (had to say that)...and for third place it went to...what? Will and I are STILL tied?!?!?!? Well, first tie break was total victory points...we were still tied! But, Will came ahead on the second tie break of head to head since he beat me in the qualifying round. So, he got third and I came in a respectable 4th.
I had to leave after that and didn't get to watch Adrien (Store Owner and overall Game God) take on Mike. But it was 2 Guild crews facing off....Mike's Perdita crew versus Adrien's Sonia crew (Think fire magic user and witch hunter). I heard that Adrien was able to come out ahead in the game and take first place. Guild wins!
So, I am hooked. It is a great game. Easy to get into as well with a low model count for games. A Crew Starter box is roughly $35 on average and is what we played in the tournie for the most part...extra models are about $10 a blister. Great community too....so I see myself playing some more for sure.