LVO 2020: Warhammer Underworlds Wrap up

At the Las Vegas open, I had the pleasure of being the Tournament Organizer for the Warhammer Underworlds events let me walk you through them. 

(Side note: due to a little oops we did not hold a two-day Grand Clash, as has been the model at the larger events and a few smaller ones this year. Next year I hope to run a true two-day Grand Clash).

On Friday and Saturday, we ran separate Grand Skirmishes. 

As suspected, Friday’s Grand Skirmish has the lowest attendance with 37 players out of the 44 registered. Our first, issue unbeknown to me, popped up like a zit on prom night, was two different start times. One listed on the LVO site (10am) while the tournament pack from GW started at (9am).  We decided to cut the day by one round to give those slackers, (I mean lovely people) who didn’t read the GW pack a chance to get to the hall, and ten people snuck in. We made it through rounds one and two before real trouble started. And trouble did show up.  Like Star Wars nerds freaking out about The Last Jedi the tsunami hit hard. I was able to pair round three on BCP, and in my haste to stay on schedule (while the app was struggling with pairing) I restarted it a couple of times. As the round was underway ghost pairings started to populate. I would have had time to repair the round, but being a bee my bonnet, BCP wouldn’t let me reset to round two. Taking one for the crew I ran the rest of the day on paper – a simple task compared to the almost 800 player 40K champs. According to the pack we should have run eight rounds, but we ran seven to accommodate the start time confusion. After seven rounds there was one player with an undefeated record. With one tie, Aman Khusro of Path to Glory, and Hexes & Warbands fame stood head and shoulders above the rest of the fighters. 

One contender at 5-2-0, unfortunately, while sharing his deck with another competitor discovered that he was playing with a seventh surge card. A truer gentleman I have never met while in contention for a top 4 finish he disqualified himself. I was heart broken for him. 

After all my chicken scratching (yes I ran out of fingers and toes) to calculate the standings we were only a half hour behind schedule. My teammates and I enjoyed an Italian dinner at Battista’s Hole in the Wall and a few adult beverages. 

  • Top 4 Friday Grand Skirmish:
  • Aman Khusro – Skaeth’s Wild Hunt.
  • Duncan Bilz – Mollog’s Mob.
  • Arthur Nicholson – Skaeth’s Wild Hunt.
  • Tim Casey – Rippa’s Snarlfangs.
  • Best painted:
  • Victor Szafranski – Thundrik’s Profiteers. 

Saturday Grand Skirmish the Return.  

After a ton of paper and pencil math Friday, I was up early on Saturday with fingers crossed that BCP would work. Thankfully the app worked great for the rest of the weekend. We started at 9:00 to get all eight rounds in (Skirmish clashes are best of one at 40 minutes/round, versus the championship format which runs best of three games in 90 minutes) and be done by 5:30. 38 of 46 registered players rolled dice round one. I have to thank my ringer Josue Ibarra. After he heard we had byes Friday he dropped the AOS tournament to help out the rest of the weekend. My Han Solo swooping in to blast Vader out of the trench. Saturday started out with an upset when Aman lost in the second game. Devastated he fought hard for the rest of the day. Our longest undefeated run lasted six games when SoCal player Mike Corse lost to a Vegas local Peter Rivera in round seven. Mike handed Aman his second lose of the day in round six and was in command of the day. Unfortunately, Mike went on to loose his eighth game as well, which catapulted Aman back in to first place. Which goes to show … wait for the cliché, never stop fighting. 

While not as exciting as Friday, I liked not having to pair rounds manually, it was a great day hanging out with some fierce competitors. Saturday night at LVO means Coop’s Pub Crawl, I never miss it. After dinner and a nap latter a herd of nerds converged on the bars around Bally’s. It’s the best event at LVO. I love seeing old friends from around the world and making new ones. 

  • Top four Saturday Grand Skirmish:
  • Aman Khusro – Thorns of the Briar Queen. 
  • Philip Santa Maria – Thorns of the Briar Queen. 
  • Victor Szafranski – Thundrik’s Profiteers.
  • Arthur Nicholson – Rippa’s Snarlfangs.
  • Best Painted:
  • Arthur Nicholson – Rippa’s Snarlfangs.

Finally Sunday came the Grand Clash.

Threre were 64 players registered for the event, but Las Vegas can be tough on the faint of heart or the overly excited and we started play with 46 bloodthirsty competitors (ok we are a bunch of nerds who play a card game with awesome miniatures, no one’s actually a vampire). It was nice to see a a good showing from outside the USA, with at least eight Canadians and five Brits.

We played four rounds of Swiss (the pack states pairing is done randomly amongst players with the same record), and a cut to the top four. Someone with a less than perfect record would scratch their way into the semi-finals.

Unfortunately, as with lots of major events, there was a bit of list drama. Despite the pack rules which required lists to be submitted on Friday, a fair few players decided to upload their lists at the last minute, just before the start of the event. This made it difficult for me to check lists on-time and coordinate the tournament. As the day rolled on, it became apparent that there were a few players without a list uploaded at all. Most played with the same list Friday or Saturday and I told them not to worry about it. However, at least six players had incomplete, illegible, or blank deck lists, one of which I uploaded for a player. All of the players had green lists in BCP, and with the busy day it was tough to find time to check everything manually. I apologize for any trouble this may have caused, but this was my third tournament in a row and there were lots of things to stay on top-of throughout the day. Remember to help out your TO by reading the pack carefully and sticking to the guidelines.

With that hiccup out of the way, the-sort-of-Swiss rounds went smoothly. After lunch, we voted for the best-painted warband, and by a landslide Arthur Nicholson’s Skaeth’s Wild Hunt with a beautiful display board took the trophy. Going into the cut Aman Khusro was in the lead, local Peter Rivera was in second followed by Victor Szafranski, and sneaking in like a good British colonizer Rob Howard (I called Rob, Ron every time I read his name, sorry dude) in fourth.

Both semi-final games went to three games, and they were fiercely competitive and close. The underdog Rob lost to Aman. The Rippa’s are nasty, but the Briar Queen is an old lady who swings above her weight class. Mean while Peter and his Grymwatch fended off the feisty Sky Dwarves piloted by Victor. Setting up Aman in his fifth Grand Clash final, versus Peter in his first. 

The opening game ended with 12 glory each but, in the end, Aman was standing on an objective to break the tie. Game two was a landslide in Peter’s favor as Aman’s dice decided to stop rolling successes. They called it at the end of the second action phase. There was no way for Aman to catch up and it was the final, so Peter didn’t need the glory for differential. Peter had won the first two roll offs for objectives and took them to his advantage. This time Aman won the off and wisely took objectives. From the first activation Peter was in command of the game, and Aman’s dice continued to be uncooperative. It was an impossible task for Aman. Like a champion he continued to fight and kept within four glory of Peter, but it wasn’t enough. For the second year in a row a Las Vegas local won the LVO Grand Clash upsetting the front runner and stopping Aman from sweeping the events this year.

  • Top four:
  • Peter Rivera – The Grymwatch.
  • Aman Khusro – Thorns of the Briar Queen. 
  • Victor Szafranski – Thundrik’s Profiteers.
  • Rob Howard – Rippa’s Snarlfangs.
  • Best Painted:
  • Arthur Nicholson – Skaeth’s Wild Hunt.

Peter Rivera

I would like to thank Reece and Frankie at Frontline Gaming for asking me to TO. I met a ton of new friends and enjoyed giving up playing so we could run smooth events. It has reenergized my Love of Warhammer Underworlds and I can’t wait until next year.

If you were at this year’s Warhammer Underworlds events let us know what you thought. I’d love to hear from you.

And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!

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About Big Dave

He’s taller, and more handsome than you, but also a little over weight. He helps raise two wild little ladies with his wife and runs a little place called Gamer’s Haven in Colton, CA.

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