Today, as we gear up for the 2012 FFG World Championship Weekend, we’re pleased to present the tale of one international champion who earned the right to compete among the world’s best in the Warhammer: Invasion The Card Game World Championship tournament.
Additionally, we want to send our thanks to PrzemysÅ‚aw “Przemo” Zub for submitting this report and to send our congratulations to everyone who helped make the 2012 Warhammer: Invasion Polish Open Championship a tremendous success.
Note: Przemo names players in this report by their forum handles rather than their proper names.
PrzemysÅ‚aw “Przemo” Zub on the 2012 Polish Open Championship:
The 2012 Polish Open Championship was held during the weekend of August 24th – 26th. On the first day of the tournament, eighty-two players showed up in Krakow, setting a new record for our tournament attendance. Also, I have never, ever seen such an even distribution of power among the races, and I’ve been playing Warhammer: Invasion since the beginning. The current, balanced meta meant there was no one dominant decktype and, thus, players faced new challenges starting at the moment of choosing their capitals. Thanks to the tough choices and huge rewards offered by the organizers, I could see insecurity in the eyes of even the best players, and I knew this meant that some really great battles were soon to be seen…
Blood on the Battlefield
The sun shone on the battlefield where the fight between the forces of Order and Destruction was to take place. Calm winds cooled the warriors as they waited for the very first skirmishes to be announced. In the tournament’s four huge rooms, players prepared their capitals and tokens as they looked to serve as generals of the hordes, powerful sorcerers and cunning scouts, all rallied for one common goal – to defeat the enemy sent against them by fate.
The day’s odds definitely favored Destruction. Chaos and Orcs lured most of the players, thanks to the possibilities they offered for control and offense. Dark Elves numbered just behind them, supported by the new Temple of Spite (Vessel of the Winds, 75). Among the ranks of Order, only the High Elves kept pace with the top races, thanks to the many powerful boosts they received during recent months that made them one of the top three factions in Warhammer: Invasion. The Dwarves and the Empire were in retreat, especially the Empire, largely due to the restriction given to Will of the Electors (Core Set, 44).
A dedicated fan of Orcs
The Top 16 decks included four Orcs, four Chaos, three Dark Elves, and five High Elves. To understand how pleasant such a balanced distribution was, you just need to look at last year’s Stahleck results, or those from last year’s Polish Championship, where Empire counted as many as 70 – 80% of the top decks. While control decks dominated, Troll tore through the opening rounds with his Orc combo deck that paired the standard Fists of Mork (City of Winter, 82), Urguck (Core Set, 62), and Lord of Change (March of the Damned, 21) with the addition of Heroic Task (Rising Dawn, 20) and The Liber Mortis (The Accursed Dead, 41). He lost only one round during the Swiss pairings, but was ultimately defeated by Chaos during the quarterfinals. Awojdi played another deck that was also worth mentioning: a Chaos deck with the inclusion of nine quests. The deck placed sixth overall.
Heroes and Legends
On day two, the remaining players showed up on the battleground to play the tournament’s final matches. In the semifinals, Deer Dance faced S.O.S., and Teokrata opposed ALAN.
S.O.S. played Dark Elves with help from Blood Dragon Knight (Legends, 53) and Drakenhof Castle (The Accursed Dead, 56). His deck focused around generating fast and powerful starts and controlling his opponent’s hand with Shades (Assault on Ulthuan, 25) and Hag Queen (City of Winter, 91). Every single card was a threat to his enemy. His opponent, Deer Dance, used a deck that focused on control…with a somewhat unconventional composition. Every key tactic was included in duplicate, not triplicate, which meant he had a greater variety of options. Two things that helped him immensely against the tournament’s Destruction decks were the Blood Dragon Knight and the large number of support cards in his deck. The inclusion of Branded By Khorne (The Eclipse of Hope, 93) is also worth noting because it helped him remove his opponent’s most resilient units whenever it was necessary. The result of the match played by these titans of control only resolved after time was called. After all the damage on the capitals was counted, Chaos won the day.
The second semifinal highlighted the bitter battles between ancient enemies. The High Elves, led by ALAN, were showering their opponent with indirect damage thanks to Eltharion the Grim (Rising Dawn, 1) and the Lothern Sea Master (Rising Dawn, 9). They were paired against Teokrata’s Dark Elves. Their fleet of Black Arks was led by Maranith (Rising Dawn, 14) and Mannfred von Carstein (The Inevitable City, 18), along with the Witch Hag (Omens of Ruin, 15). After a long battle, the Dark Elves had to concede to their cousins' power.
Teokrata during a tough match
Thus, the great portal opened over Ulthuan, bringing the bloodthirsty sorcerers and warriors of Chaos to the High Elves’ island for the tournament’s final attack. There, they would determine a single winner and tournament champion.
The stakes were great. Among a wealth of other prizes that included board games and trophies, the winner would be sent to World Championships as Poland’s representative.
ALAN during the finals
Accordingly, the finals were a great spectacle, and they showed off decks from two different races, possibly the most powerful factions currently in Warhammer: Invasion The Card Game. ALAN played without any restricted cards, showing both how powerful the High Elves have become and how prepared the player was, and he bombarded Chaos' capital with indirect damage. Any single misstep by Deer Dance would mean that Eltharion would show up, and the game would be over, and every High Elf attack without defenders ended up pushing more damage onto the Chaos capital.
However, Khorne and Tzeentch finally showed their support to their faithful follower and brought the High Elves’ economy to ruin. Chaos slowly gained card advantage and brought defeat to ALAN. Although Deer Dance barely made it out alive, his powerhouse control deck stopped the efficient High Elf machine to finally earn him the title of the new Polish Champion.
Congratulations to Deer Dance, who climbed to the very top thanks to a wonderful deck and superb play! Congratulations to ALAN, who showed the finesse and strength of the High Elves! Congratulations to S.O.S. and Teokrata, who showed the power of the Dark Elves!
The top four: Teokrata, Deer Dance, ALAN, and S.O.S.
To Conquer the Old World
On Sunday afternoon, while the dust was finally settling and players were packing to return home, they had lots of new ideas in their minds and were thinking about how, next time, they could be the winners. The organizers knew they did a great job, and the participants would remember them for it. Finally, the new Champion was surely thinking about his upcoming trip to the FFG World Championship Weekend, the Warhammer: Invasion The Card Game World Championship tournament, and the great new challenge awaiting him.
Deer Dance, the 2012 Warhammer: Invasion Polish Champion
Remember, the invasion of the Old World is still ongoing!
–PrzemysÅ‚aw “Przemo” Zub