Interview with Henry Kay, Steamcon UK LCQ winner
by midwestwargaming · Published · Updated
This past weekend was one of the most exciting weekends for Guild Ball fans ever! SteamCon UK dropped a lot of exciting news on us: new players, new guilds, new leagues, new roster sizes and so much more. (if you missed the keynote you can listen to a recap here) In addition to excellent news we also got to watch some excellent games of Guild Ball played thanks to their constant streaming. The premiere tournament to watch was definitely the Steamcon UK World Championship Qualifier. The world championship tournament is just two weeks away and it is the essentially the Super Bowl of Guild Ball (or for our friend’s across the pond we can call it the World Cup equivalent).
Only eight people get to participate in the world championships, seven earn their spot by winning their respective national championship tournament and the eighth earned their spot from this recent SteamCon UK qualifier. The winner of that qualifier was Henry Kay and he won with Union.
For those who know Henry, it’s not a big surprise that he won. In the relatively brief amount of time Guild Ball has been around, Henry Kay has already built up an impressive resume. In addition to this recent win Henry was the 2017 British Nationals finalist, the 2016 Irish Nationals winner and he is also currently the 3rd highest ranked player in the world.
Unfortunately, due to logistical reasons, Henry will not be able to make it Chicago to compete at worlds. However, despite this setback he has been gracious enough to permit an interview and share his experiences. But first, here’s a look at Henry Kay’s roster and his match reports:
Henry Kay’s Tournament Ten
Henry Kay’s matches
Interview with Henry Kay
DAN: What made you choose Union for the LCQ?
HK: I’ve been playing them for a while and I consider them to be one of the stronger ~5 teams available right now. They have a lot of good niche tech options for specific matchups and a deep stable of players which are individually solid, so you don’t depend on synergy to get anything done. This means you are less vulnerable to your plans being disrupted than most other teams because your models are usually reasonably useful even when the best case scenario isn’t available
DAN: I see you leaned heavily on Vet Rage for this tournament. Can you explain why Vet Rage is your go-to-captain?
HK: He’s very hard to control and puts a lot of pressure on the opponent to respect him. He has potential for very big payoff activations while only needing 4 influence, so the rest of the team gets to do things too. He has a linear plan which is very effective but there are lots of clever tricks you can do – primarily with Red Fury – which can catch people off guard.
DAN: Has that ever happened? I don’t see Thousand Cuts trigger very often from Decimates non-charge attacks because it is on the end of her playbook.
*Decimate had been taken out a 2nd time*
DAN: Is there any situation where you would actually consider bringing Fangtooth? I’m a sucker for the model so I’m sad to see him unused.
HK: I don’t think there is right now. In a Rage lineup, his 1 inf contribution is a big issue because Rage’s team is already quite influence hungry. Gutter does what Fangers does better, right now. The only advantage he has is possibly being somewhere to kill the ball, but his 1″ melee and DEF2+ means he’s never going to do so very well. If you wanted a reliably hide the ball against Shark etc, Snakeskin probably would be the model to add to the lineup. He just isn’t good enough for the Union lineup right now – the roster is already quite deep and every model does something, so his high points / matchups he does well in would need to be more prevalent than they are currently.
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