Asking for a Loss

Yesterday I had a game with my Tyranids against the mighty Tau. I asked for the beating I took. I mean that, I literally asked for a competitive game, and was thumped. I knew it was going to happen, but I wanted to see competitive Tau.

image1

The only point when all of my army was on the table.

My list consisted of 2 CADs at 2500 points. Only limitation was I asked for no Lord of War. My list contained the following:

Swarmlord w/ 3 Tyrant Guard
3 Flying Hive Tyrants w/ Brainleech worms
4 Zonathropes w/ Neurothrope (in a Tryannocyte)
Malanthrope
2 Units of 10 Termagants
1 Ripperswarm w/ Deepstrike
1 Mucolid Spore
2 Hive Crones
9 Raveners w/Rending Claws
Exocrine

The Tau list contained the Ghostkeel Formation, The Riptide Formation, Markerlight drones Formation, Breacher squads in transports, Broadsides, stealth suits, and a commander and guards. There were probably other units too, but these are the units that stick out in my mind.

I am not going to do a normal brief summary of what happened, because it was ugly.

The Tau player deployed first, and I was not able to seize the initiative. We had Dawn of War deployment and the Big Guns Never Tire mission. On the roll, we only had three objective markers.

In the Tau player’s first round of shooting, the beating commenced. He killed both Hive Crones. Slaughtered 2 of the Hive Guard (and wounded the third). Put three wounds on of the Flying Hive Tyrants (the Warlord). He slaughtered six of the nine Raveners. The Malanthrope was dead. I could cover what I did, but not much happened. I got feel no pain off on a couple of units, and wounded some Tau, but not much else happened.

image4

Deadpile turn 1.

Turn Two continued the beating. Two of the three Flying Hive Tyrants were put down (including the Warlord). Relatively speaking, this was the least painful turn since that was all they my opponent killed. However, it still was painful. All of my reserves entered the game. Maybe how I would have a chance.

Nope, I managed to accomplish very little in this turn. This was due to some poor rolling on my part, and some good rolling on my opponents.

It just went down hill from here. I had nothing for the Tau. In fact, by turn 6 I was tabled (at least I lasted that long). It was just an ugly ugly game. This is not to say I didn’t have fun. I did, I had a blast. I just had nothing to bring against this army. I did kill some units, but it wasn’t much. A few wounds on the Ghostkeels, a broadside, some of the commander’s squad. I did have some success, but not a lot.

Da Crunch – Ork Perspective Battle Report

Howdy everyone!  Professor Severus here.  It is time to bring you the ork perspective of the big nid fight Shorereaper and I had last week.  In case you missed it you can find his list and deployment here, my list and deployment here, and his perspective on the battle here.  Let’s jump right in!

TURN 1

The setup

The setup

As I stated in the first article, my warboss wanted nothing to do with the swarmlord who happened to be sitting directly across the board from him.  I knew the Ravengers were going to catch up to me sooner or later.  So, I decided to be aggressive. The biker mob moved up to the hill in front of them.  The left flank battlewagon and trukk of boys move towards the center of my lines (they were useless against those carnifexes).  The right flank advanced to try to take on the zoanthropes, with the trukk driving flat out to get right in front of them.  The middle unit of battlewagon and trukk boyz moved up to get ready to engage some of the little bugs or the swarmlord.

I was hopeful that I could do some damage in the shooting phase.  The flashgitz lined up a shot on the biovores, rolled a 1 for the ap value, and let loose with da dakka. They killed one for their efforts. The bike shooting went into thinning out the central unit of hormagaunts.  After that, the orks braced for impact.

On shorereaper’s turn, the nids rolled forward.  He did a bunch of psychic shenanigans and killed the trukk in front of the zoanthropes, dropped the warbosses unit’s WS and BS by 3, and got off feel no pain.  Then the shooting happened.

The crone flamed the left flank battlewagon and trukk roasting a few boys each.  Then the flying hive tyrant popped the left flank trukk.  The boys got out in a terrible position and blocked the battlewagon from brining it’s load to bear.  The biovore toasted the gretching.  And the unit of termaguants on the right flank shot up the boyz infront of the zoanthropes.  The loan boy left promptly broke and fled.

Then the ravengeres charged up the hill into the biker squad.  I was actually okay with this.  The bikers are the only unit I had that could take a charge from those snake nids.  Even with the reduced WS, the nobz won the fight.  The problem was we were now locked in combat within charge range of swarmy.

The Biker Nobz hold on against the Ravengers as the Swarmlord approaches

The Biker Nobz hold on against the Ravengers as the Swarmlord approaches

TURN 2

Turn 2 had one goal.  Get the warboss free of combat.  One dakka jet came in (da red barron), who promptly lined up an attack run on the flying hive tyrant/crone.  The now unsupported right flank battlewagon rolled up and dumped it’s boys out with the hope of charging the zoanthropes.  The center trukk rolled up and dumped it’s boys out to engage the hormagaunts (better to charge than be charged). The center flank battlewagon rolled up and dumped it’s boys out in an attempt to engage the ravengers and shield the warboss.  The trukk boys on the left, now without their beloved trukk, scrambled into the position to get at the ravengers as well. The left flank battlewagon threw it into reverse and started moving towards the center of my lines, around the hill the bike were stuck on.

Shooting phase was critical.  Da red barron lined up his shots on the crone and killed it.  That flamer was going to be a huge problem as all these transports start to unload.  The flash gitz took aim at the flying hive tyrant.  Shorereaper chose to jink, and the flash gitz only landed a wound that he saved.  The jink was all that mattered though.  Otherwise most of the boys ran to get into position.

The assault phase was where the real shennanigans began. The two units of boys (totaling around 25 bodies) charged the ravengers.  They did so in such a manner that would prevent the swarmlord from being able to engage the warbosses unit.  He could only get to the boyz if he charged next turn.  The trukk boyz in the center charged the hormagaunts.  The battlewagon boyz on the right FAILED to charge the zoanthropes.  That left them out in the open between 30 termingaunts with fleshboarers and a exorcine.

After throwing buckets of dice around, the orks beat the hormagaunts, who held. The combined might of the nobz, warboss, and a bucket full of boys killed off the ravengers.  The boy units consolidated towards the nid lines to act as a screen, while the warboss and bikers fell back.

Da Red Barron faces off with the Flyrant after finishing off the Crone

Da Red Barron faces off with the Flyrant after finishing off the Crone

Then Shorereaper struck back.  Nid movement still consisted of a bunch of bodies running at me.  The flyrant came around to try to engage the big blob of boys in swarmy’s way.  The center termingaunts got into position to charge the boyz/hormagaunt fight.  The right flank termingaunts moved up to engage the boyz who failed their zoanthrope charge.

Psychic phase was a bitch. The flyrant got off psychic scream and cleared out some boyz around the swarmlord.  The neurothrope ate a bunch of boyz and then used the warp charges to take out a battlewagon.  Catalyst went off everywhere that mattered. And the warboss had his WS and BS reduced by 1.  Stupid bugs and their stupid mind tricks.

Kilo Nob lives through the self inflicted wounds!

Kilo Nob lives through the self inflicted wounds!

Shooting phase was worse. The PYROVORES actually got into range and roast the left flank trukk squad down to a single 1 wound nob.  The nob proceeded to pull a Kylo Ren, punch himself in the chest and cause 3 wounds and them made three 6+ saves to live.  He was pumped up and ready to go!  More shooting killed off some of the right flank boyz and wiped out the screening boyz in front of swarmy.

Kilo Nob stands alone after the devastation of the pyrovers

Kilo Nob stands alone after the devastation of the pyrovers

Assualt phase wasn’t bad.  The termagaunts in the center charged into the hormagaunt/boyz fight, which ended in the orks favor. The right flank termingaunts charged into the battlewagon boyz, which ended in a draw.

TURN 3

Turn’s three objective was get rid of the flyrant while staying away from swarmy.  Another dakka jet came in, and lined up some shots on the  flyrant. Da red barron moved to engage the exocrine.  The bikes moved back towards my board edge to be in position to shoot/charge the flyrant.  Kylo Nob ran forward with all his rage to engage the malenthrope.  The last battlewagon of boyz unloaded in the center to help with the moshpit that was the boyz/termigaunt/hormaguant melee.

The flahsgitz, bikers, and a dakka jet let loose into the flyrant.  They caused 2 wounds, the flyrant failed his grounding check, and lost a third.  Da red barron chipped a wound of the exorcine.  Other than that, everything was engaged.

Kaptain Waaaa and the biker nobz that were left (two I think) charged into the downed flyrant.  The center unit of battlewagon boyz charged the gaunt/boy melee.  And Kylo Nob charged the Malenthrope.  The center melee ended in the orks favor, but those damned fearless bugs held.  Warboss survived the required Ghazzy challenged, killed the flyrant, but was left with a single wound.  And brave Kylo Nob died to the probing tentacles of the malenthrope.

Kilo Nob seeks to vent his rage on the malenthrope

Kilo Nob seeks to vent his rage on the malenthrope

The nids retaliated with more of the same.  Swarmy and the Carnifexes kept on the move, trying to get into position for charges. I had been using the now empty battlewagons as walls to block Swarmy.  Zoanthropes shot at said battlewagons.  Nothing big happened in combat during Shorereapers turn.  Gaunts and Boyz died, but everyone held.

Trukk Boyz hanging on against the press of nid bodies

Trukk Boyz hanging on against the press of nid bodies

TURN 4

Turn 4 was starting to look grim.  Da orks were going into survival mode.  The warboss and remaining nobz drove for the right flank to get away from Swarmy and maybe free those battlewagon boyz.  Da red barron ran out of airspace, so left the table.  The last dakka jet came on.  Both dakka jets and the flashgitz lined up shots on Swarmy.  It was time to try to take him down.  A few battlewagons moved to make nuisances of themselves.

In the shooting phase, the orks unloaded every bullet they had at Swarmy. I knew I wouldn’t kill him, but I was hoping to get rid of the guard.  We accounted for one guard with all da dakka.  Not what I was hoping for.

In assault, the warboss charged in against the termagaunts on the right flank engaged with the battlewagon boyz.  They killed enough to make a deathwatch marine proud, but still failed to obliterate the unit.  Fortunately, a battlewagon was in position to shield the combat from Swarmy, but Shorereaper had other plans.  The center melee kept on grinding, with the advantage still going to the orks.

Shorereaper retaliated with more nid brutality.  The zoanthropes moved up to engage the warboss in a tarpit tactic.  Swarmy moved to clear out the blocking battlewagon. The carnifexes lumbered around looking bored.  Psychic once again saw catalyst go off, but for once, the warbosses unit did not have their WS or BS reduced.  The battlewagon died to the swarmlord and the zoanthropes/guant/boyz/warboss melee held.  The center ground on, but the was a light at the end o the tunnel, the boyz were almost free.

Battlewagon Boyz have almost finished clearing out the center

Battlewagon Boyz have almost finished clearing out the center

TURN 5

Things were starting to get desperate.  All the dakka jets were on the field, but getting shot angles was becoming increasingly difficult.  The only free ork unit was the flashgitz, who moved back to stay out of carnifex charge range.

Shooting was a scattered mess.  The orks couldn’t concentrate fire on any one target. They took aim at the lone biovore, the pyrovore, and the malenthrope.  The pyrovers lost a model, the biovore was killed, and a few wounds were chipped of the malenthrope.

The warboss fought like an ork possessed in a struggle to break free from the zoanthropes.  The orks were finally running low on battlewagons, and had nothing to block swarmy with.  The center melee finally resolved with 5 boyz and a nob surrounded by a mountain of gaunt corpses.  Unfortunately, they were now staring at two bored carnifexes.

Then it finally happened in Shorereaper’s turn. Swarmy finally got his charge on the warboss.  The carnifexes ran into the boyz in the center.  Due to the Ghazzy rules, Kaptain Waaaa had to accept the Swarmlords Challenge.  Mind you, he has one wound left, a 4+ armor save, feel no pain, and swings at initiative 1.  Oh, and the nids dropped his WS by 3 in the psychic phase.

Swarmy turned the poor Kaptain Waaa into green paste, killed the rest of the nobz, pain boy, and da boyz.  After the feeding frenzy, he consolidate towards the last threat on the table, the flashgitz.  The carnifexes frolicked liked excited puppies and smashed the center boyz.

The zoanthropes sacrifice themselves on the buzzing saw of Kaptain Waaaa to buy the Swarmlord more time

The zoanthropes sacrifice themselves on the buzzing saw of Kaptain Waaaa to buy the Swarmlord more time

TURN 6

Well ladz, things were looking grim.  So what does an ork do?  DAKKA!!!!!!!  Instead of turning tail and running lie some cowardly gitz, the flash gitz sat still to get +1BS.  The other battlewagon moved to block up the carnifexes.  Da dakka jet’s buzzed overhead but still couldn’t get an angle on anything worthwhile.

The final moment of truth. The flashgitz could do some real damage to swarmy.  He was out in the open, down to two guard.  They had +1 BS.  And swarmy for once didn’t have catalyst on.  Then they rolled a 5 for AP.  The volley of fire proceeded to bounce of the carapace of the guard, wounding one.

And that was it.  Swarmy and the carnifexes smashed the battlewagons, leaving the flash gitz on foot. In turn 7 they tried to shoot again, but still failed at doing anything.  Then swarmy killed 5.  After that the game ended.

The Flash Gitz decide that they are not getting paid enough for this nonsense

The Flash Gitz decide that they are not getting paid enough for this nonsense

When we sat down to calculate victory points, the orks wracked up a mighty 11 points.  Unfortunately, the nids devoured a monstrous 19 points.  So the match went to the nids.

And there you have it lads.  Shorereaper both saved Swarmy’s head and crushed the orks mob.  It was a blast, with lots of ork kunnin and nid brutality to keep the game going back and forth.  Until next time this is Severus saying have a good one and take it easy.

The Return of the Horde!

Howdy Everyone!  Professor Severus here.  This past week, Shorereaper made a trip down to the south to fulfill his duties as my groomsmen.  One of those many duties was to haul down his nids so Kaptain Klaw could have one more chance at taking the Swarmlord’s head as a trophy!

03 Red BarronWe worked up our lists before the game.  I really wanted to try out the new decurion style detachment for the orks.  So, I wrote up a list and got the models dug out of the closet.  As a side note, I REALLY need more storage space at my current house.  Here is what I came up with:

Great Waagh!-Band:

  1. Painboy on Warbike
  2. Waaagh!-band
    1. 11 Boyz, Nob with Power Klaw and Bosspole, Trukk
    2. 11 Boyz, Nob with Power Klaw and Bosspole, Trukk
    3. 11 Boyz, Nob with Power Klaw and Bosspole, Trukk
    4. 19 Boyz, Nob with Power Klaw and Bosspole
    5. 19 Boyz, Nob with Power Klaw and Bosspole
    6. 19 Boyz, Nob with Power Klaw and Bosspole
    7. 10 Gretchin, Runtherd
    8. Mek
    9. 6 Nobz on Warbikes
    10. Warboss on Warbike, Power Klaw, Big Bosspole
  3. Dakkajet Skawdron
    1. 3 Dakka Jets with Extra Supa Shoota
  4. Battlewagon with Big Shoota
  5. Battlewagon with Big Shoota
  6. Battlewagon with Big Shoota
  7. 10 Flashgitz with Battlewagon with Big Shoota

Total: 2501pts

As I have stated before, I think the Great Waaagh!-Band detachment has a fundamental flaw.  All the benefits rely on the warboss living, and the warboss must issue and accept challenges.  It really pains me to say this, but unless you are taking Ghazzy, most standard warbosses won’t survive many challenges against combat characters.  The idea with the biker warboss was to keep him mobile and try to keep him alive as long as possible.  If he gets anywhere near the Swarmlord, he is dead. The plan was to try to kill the inevitable tyrant guard with shooting and then swamp ole Swarmy with a ton of boys until he falls under the weight of bodies.  I went with a mounted force to keep thing more mobile and to let me pick my fight easier.  Or at least that was the plan…

Shorereaper and I made our way out to Moxie Games and began the setup.  We agreed on kill points as the mission.  Mainly because when we go orks vs nids, we pretty much focus on killing each other and forget the rest of the objectives.  We set up a table with some nice line of sight blocking terrain, rolled up dawn of war deployment, and got to work.

I had first deployment.  Since I had no idea how Shorereaper would deploy, I went for a balance approach.  I put a battlewagon and a trukk full of boys on each flank and one set in the center.  I put the warbikes and flashgitz near the center as well.  The gretchin hid in a corner.  The idea was that wherever Shorereaper put his scary units (mainly Swarmy and the Ravengers), I could hopefully use my speed to redeploy.

04 Ork DeploymentAfter Shorereaper deployed, I realized I had a problem.  He had Swarmy and the Ravengers (great name for a metal band) directly across from the biker boss, Kaptain Waaaaaaa.  Shorereaper decided to not try to seize.  Pro Tip:  If you opponent doesn’t want to seize, it means he has you right where he wants you.

07 Zoanthropes in the distanceAnd with that, I will leave it here.  This is going to be a multi-part battlereport.  We still have Shorereapers list and deployment to go over.  Then we can get into each of our perspectives on the game itself.  Until next time this is Professor Severus saying have a good one and take it easy.

Orks v Tyranids – Nid Perspective

So, now that we have seen my list and deployment here, I am going to get into the actual game. *I apologize, I am writing this a week late, and I am not sure I am 100% correct on the following*

Right off the bat, I opted not to try and seize the initiative. My logic was that if I move forward, I would have limited shooting, and everything would have to run forward. This would put me in a position to get charged on turn one. If I let Severus go first, I might be in a position to get a charge off in the first turn with the Raveners.

Turn 1 –
Severus did the Orky thing and quickly moved forward. It was actually a little scary seeing that many ork vehicles head in my direction. He did get off some shooting, killing one of the two biovores and a couple of hormaguants, but he mostly seemed to use that turn in order to get into a position where he could charge and protect some of his more important units.

In my turn, I moved into a position to start getting charges off. My Raveners made a move towards the Warboss and his Squad. Swarmlord slowly moved forward (because that is what he does). The HT and the Hive Crone headed towards the nearest ork vehicles.

In the psychic phase I got Catalyst off and gave feel no pain to the Swarmlord and the Raveners. I reduced the Warbosses BS and WS. Finally, the Zoanthropes blew up a Trukk, giving me first blood.

09 Nid Center Flank

In the shooting phase, my Biovore bombed the unit of Gretchen (killing all but 2), the Exocrine shot at another Trukk, the Hive Crone burned some boys in a pair of vehicles (not many, I caused 1 wound in one and 4 in the other). But mostly I ran units forward that would not have been able to get off a charge.

In the assault phase, I had the Raveners charge the bikes. While I did get a few wounds on them, killing 2, Severus caused more to the Raveners, killing three of them. However, I was fearless, so I was just happy getting them tied up.

15 Turn 1 over

Turn 2 –
In Turn two, only one of the three Ork flyers entered the game from reserves. Severus positioned some boys to charge the Raveners. More of his boys were put into a place where they could shoot and charge the Zoanthropes. In the shooting phase he killed the Hive Crone (which was a significant loss for me) and caused me to jink the Flying HT.

In the assault phase, the boys charged the Raveners, and proceeded to slaughter most of them. The other boys failed their charge on the Zoanthropes.

In my Turn two, I continued to move forward. The Carnifexes continued to try to get into a position where they could do something (that was a theme for them through this game). The Swarmlord again didn’t move that far forward. At this point in time, I was just trying to get him into combat with the Warboss. But the fact that the boss was on a bike, and that the Swarmlord does not have fleet (plus my move through cover rolling was terrible), I was not having any luck catching him.

In the shooting phase, the Pyrovores managed to kill off some boys (that were no longer in combat since they killed the Raveners), so they were actually productive.

I sent more troops into combat, trying to tie up and kill some boys. While it worked, it didn’t work as well as I had hoped.

18 Turn 1 Over

Turn 3 –

In Turn three, another one of the Ork jets came in on the table. And this time, after some serious firepower, a failed grounding check, and a charge from the Warboss, the Flying HT was brought down and killed. I also lost more little bugs and one of the pyrovores (which did not explode). The Warboss consolidated away from me, making the swarmlord have to go even further.

In my turn, the Swarmlord continued to try and run down the Warboss. Actually, most of my units were trying to get into better positions. I didn’t have anything to deal with the flyers, so I proceeded to ignore them except for the random snapfire from the Exocrine (and he always failed to cause any damage). Malanthrope and Carnifex units continued to try and position themselves differently. By this time the Hormaguants and one of the Termagant units were very much reduced in size. Even the second Termagant unit was reduced. I was taking losses left and right.

25 Turn 3

Turn 4 –

Severus used his turn four to try and rack up some kill points. One flyer shot at the Malanthrope and killed it. The warboss charged into combat with the left flank Termaguants in order to support the boys that were tied up.

Turn 4 is where I realized that if I were ever going to catch the Warboss, I would have to sacrifice my Zoanthropes. I put them into a position to charge into the combat that the Warboss was in. A couple of Termagants wouldn’t hold out long enough. The Thropes, while terrible in close combat, are survivable with a 3+ invulnerable save. The Warboss slaughtered the Neurothrope in close combat, and I took more losses, but the Warboss could not get away. The Swarmlord was going to get him.

30 Turn 3

Turn 5 –

The turns picked up the pace as the game went on, but that because both Severus and I were taking heavy losses. But turn 5 was the hardest for Severus. He did complete some shooting, took out a few small units, but he was taking a beating. He charged the exocrine (after taking off some wounds with a flyer) but lost combat. He killed a more of the Zoanthrope unit, but not enough to flee. And that is when the Swarmlord charged in a killed the boss in a challenge. From there his game collapsed completely.

35 Turn 4

 Turn five was the first turn where the Carnifexes were able to do anything. They charged and destroyed a battlewagon. The game did go on to a turn 6, but by this time there was not much left in either one of us. The Tyranids feasted on a lot of Orks. And I have to say, the new detachment that the Orks have is not one of the better ones.

34 Turn 4

Orks v Tyranids List and Set Up – Nid Perspective

This past Thursday, I was privileged enough to get another game in against Professor Severus and his Orks at Moxie Games. I was down in Alabama for his wedding, and the Tyranids unwillingly made the trip with me. We were discussing this game for a while and I settled in on the following 2500-point list.

01 Nid Army

HQ –
Swarmlord (Warlord)
3 Tyrant Guards
Flying Hive Tyrant w/ devourers w/ Brainleech worms

Troops –
30 Termagants
30 Termagants
30 Hormaguants

Elite –
Malanthrope
2 Pyrovores
4 Zoanthropes and 1 Neurothrope

Fast –
Hive Crone
9 Raveners w/ Rending Claws

Heavy –
2 Biovores
2 Carnifexes w/ Adrenal Glands and Scything Talons
Exocrine

02 Nid Army

I felt this list brought some solid synapse creatures, a pair of flying MCs to deal with flyers, large numbers of troops, and some solid blast templates. Ok, I had two pyrovores, but they look good. I brought the Carnifexes for some tank killing ability, although I am not used to running them in pairs.

For psychic powers, the Swarmlord had Catalyst, Psychic Scream, and Horror. The HT had Psychic Scream and Paroxysm. The Zoanthrops had Warp Blast/Lance and Onslaught. Of course, they all had Donimion as well.

05 Nid Deployment

We decided on a kill-points game, and had the Dawn of War deployment. The professor won the roll off and deployed first. You will be able to read his list and perspective, but the short version is that he had a unit of bikes (with his warlord and a painboy), a bunch of boys in trukks and battlewagons, and three flyers.

09 Nid Center Flank

On my left flank, I deployed the Exocrine, a unit of termagants, and the Zoantrhopes to shore up my psynapse on that side. Zoanthropes, while terrible in close combat (and have no shooting) are very survivable. I didn’t think I would need to worry about them. In the center, I had the Biovores in terrain, the Swarmlord, the hormaguants, and the other termagant unit. This gave me a solid center. On my right flank I placed the flying HT and the Hive Crone in terrain, along with the Raveners, Malanthrope, and the Carnifexes (which was a poor decision on my part). The Carnifexes were all the way to the right flank and spent most of the game trying to get into a useful position.

08 Nid Left Flank

06 Nid Deployment

The Malanethrope gave cover saves to that flank nicely, including the Swarmlord (although just barely). The Crone and the HT had a nice 2+ cover save, making sure that they would make it to the next round.

Commissar’s Grit – No Retreat, No Surrender!

The mighty prize in it's new resting place.

The mighty prize in it’s new resting place.

Howdy everyone, it’s Professor Severus here.  I had the chance to get out of the house this weekend and get away to the FLGS, Moxie Games.  Stephen, one of the active members of the community, decided to organize a bad list tournament.  You can take a look at my past post to see the Tau list I put together for the tournament.

So, as a refresher, the rules of the tournament are as follows.  You write the worst legal list possible using an army of your choice.  You bring those models and that list to the tournament.  When you are paired up with an opponent, you swap armies.  You then have to use the bad list they gave you to beat the bad list you brought.  I have played this format before and it is a blast.  The tournament used malestorm missions 1, 4, and 6 using the standard tactical objective deck.

Round one I paired with an opponent I never had played before, RT.  He brought in a list of Dark Angels.  Standard CAD (none of that new shennanigans they got with their 7th edition update), composed of two tactical squads, a scout squad, a vet squad, a terminator squad, a rhino, a razorback, a predator, a captain, and a chaplain.  The captain was the warlord.  I setup to go first, but that dang Mirrorcodex allowed RT to seize the initiative.

The game started out close, but in the end massed bolter fire and 3+ saves carried the day.  I really felt like space marines could conquer the galaxy after that game (as long as no one shot back).  I focused on keeping the suits with the commander contained.  The suits only use was close combat, so quickly the commander was named Leroy Jenkins.  One of the highlights was the scout squad taking the charge from the mob of suits and holding their own.  Eventually some tactical marines came in and helped break the suits.

Malestorm points really went in my favor.  My opponent didn’t have much luck with cards.  I also focused on taking out his fast moving vespid first to minimize the amount of objectives he could grab.  In then end, the Dark Angels emerged victorious.  I believed I managed to rack up 9 points to RT’s 1.

Getting set up with the Dark Angels.  Not sure why the think a fallen is hiding in the tau, but whatever motivates them was fine by this commissar.

Getting set up with the Dark Angels. Not sure why the think a fallen is hiding in the tau, but whatever motivates them was fine by this commissar.

Round two saw me taking the helm of Khorne Chaos Space Marines against another opponent I had never played, Cathy.  She gave me an army containing 2 units of cultists, 2 units of khorne berzerkers, 2 units of chaos space marines with bolters, a unit of chaos space marines with close combat weapons, a unit of bikers, a dark apostles (as warlord), a chaos lord, and a unit of obliterators.  The biggest weakness in this list was the cultists.  I put the characters in those units to give them fearless.  Then I stuck them on the back field to hold objectives.  I was all prepped to go first, but the dang Mirrorcodex reared it’s ugly head again and I was seized on (both RT and Kathy rolled 5’s).

This was the malestrom mission where you could steal an opponents “score objective x card”.  That forced each player to get aggressive and get on objectives quickly, which played right into Khorne’s battle plan.  The berserkers carried the day.  They took a charge from the suit mob led by Leroy, then proceeded to butcher everything in their path (counter attack, rage, and furious charge is a great combo).  The bolter marines helped clean up a few squads as well.  In the end I had Cathy tabled by turn 4.  11 points to the Professor.  No epic moments in this one, just lots of dead tau and tau allies.  I really felt bad playing that game.  It was becoming clear things were going in chaos’ favor by turn 2 or 3.  I had to keep at it and score points as battle points were used for any tie breakers.  Sorry Cathy.

The Blood God was really disappointed in the offering the drones made.  They had neither blood nor skull for the great lord.

The Blood God was really disappointed in the offering the drones made. They had neither blood nor skull for the great lord.

Finally, onto the last round of the tournament.  I was paired up with Anthony, an opponent I have played before.  He is a frequent player to local tournaments, so he know his way around an army.  He brought me by far my worst list of the day.  It was a Dark Eldar list composed of 2 archons (one acting as warlord), 2 units of wracks, 6 units of wyches, a unit of bloodbrides, an ur-ghul, and 3 units of khymarea.  All on foot.  The tau list definitely had the advantage on maneuverability, durability, and range.  I had second turn, so I set up a bit back to try to mitigate any turn 1 shooting.  Of course when I tried to seize, it didn’t work.

The malestrom mission was deadlock, the mission where your number of cards decrease each turn.  That meant you had to get out onto the field early and start scoring.  My original plan was to hold back with most of the force and wait for army wide feel no pain to kick in on turn 3.  Anthony got a good first hand, so I had to start getting after those points if I wanted to keep up.

I decided to break the army into three waves.  The khymarea were the first, scoring kingslayer, blood and guts, slay the warlord, and scoring objective 5 in the first turn (poor darkstrider never knew what hit him).  The bloodbrides tied up the Leroy mob in the center of the field.  While those units soaked up the firepower in turn 2, the wracks go into position.  They weathered the fire power from turn 3.  Finally in turn 4, most of the wyches were in places to make charges and I started taking down units.  That is really when things started to swing.  The archons were putting down suits and kroot, wyches were chasing around drones and vespid.  All sorts of chaos was breaking loose on the field.  Heck, even the Ur-Ghul scored a few points by sitting on a back field objective.

This game was a close one.  I think I had it on turn 5, but the game went on.  Anthony had a chance to tie it up in turn 6.  In the end, the brave drone unit failed a 4 inch charge into my warlords second unit of wyches (the first were used as fodder to protect him).  This saved me from giving up slay the warlord.  I ended up taking it 15 to 13 I think.  Time expired after that.

And with that, I was the lone commissar left on the battle field.  I went 3-0 and racked up a healthy pile of battle points.  Anthony took second.  Overall, it was a blast.  These types of games always make you stretch your brain tactically to try to figure out a solution to the mission.  Plus with some many ridiculous list in the field, dumb funny things are bound to happen.  Although you could make the argument that I won because I own the most crappy models.  Not going to argue that one.

I really appreciate Stephen for running this tournament.  It was a blast and the chainsword prize was so worth the effort of painting up all those vespid, hounds, drones, and suit. So, what do you guys think?  Anyone ever play in a tournament like this before?  What sort of list would you bring.  Until next time this is Professor Severus saying have a good one and take it easy.

Weekend in Review

Well, this was a rough week for my Warhammer record and me. My Carcharodons faced my Tyranids (not played by me) and lost. My Alpha Legion faced the Sisters of Silence…. I mean, Sisters of Battle… and lost. It was a fun and productive weekend though, so I count that as a win.

In the first game, I loaned my Tyranids to my opponent since he flew out from California (for some sort of training) and didn’t bring his Army. Since I hardly ever face the Nids, I asked him if I could be the Sharks. I wrote a pair of lists that were moderately competitive, but I hindered my side by not taking drop pods or Grav-centurions. Ok, I admit he didn’t have the toughest list either, so I would say it was a fair match.

I forgot how fast those Nids could move. It was a blood bath. I thought a good tactic would be to wait for him to come to me as I shot at him. And it might have worked if the sharks could actually hit something. Before I knew it, Raveners were in close combat shredding my army. I felt brave and charged the Swarmlord with my Captain and his command squad. They did tie the swarmlord up for a while, but in the end they just couldn’t stand up to that many attacks (11, right?). Sorry, inside joke.

In the end, I just couldn’t score enough Tactical Supremacy cards to be competitive… which leads us to game two.

Sister of Battle or an Alpha Legion Saboteur?

Sister of Battle or an Alpha Legion Saboteur?

Sisters of Battle vs. the Alpha Legion. 40K vs 30K… but it is the Sisters, right? Well, maybe not. While the Alpha Legion did have some good moments, they just didn’t hold up. The Saboteur destroyed an organ grinder (Exorcist) on the turn it came in. Headhunters did work with their AP3 (semi-rending?) shots. Dynat slayed Celestine twice in close combat thanks to his Thunder Hammer. But I was using the Tactical Supremacy again (damn those are tough to score) and while I had an amazing turn one (scored 8 points), the rest of the turns were a struggle to score anything. In the end I had 13 points while my opponent had over twenty (using the regular tactical cards). In the end I had about 5 headhunters left, Dynat, and an Apothecary left on the board.

On the hobby side of things, I managed to build 9 of my 10 Headhunters for my Alpha Legion. I even managed to paint one almost to finish. So, again, with the fun that was had, and the painting and building that was done, I would declare this a successful weekend.

Heavy Bolter Headhunter

Heavy Bolter Headhunter

First Tournament of the Year

Hello all, Shorereaper here, and it has been a while. While I really should start my return to blogging with a “What have I been up to while I was gone” I am instead going to summarize a small tournament I entered today. I hope this will be my triumphant return to blogging, after taking months off, but I am not making any promises.

First, I will start with a brief summary of the rules of the tournament. It was an escalation tournament, with round 1 being 500 points, round 2 being 1000 points, and round 3 being 2000 points. You were allowed 1 CAD, no allies or formations, and no Lords of War. Your 500-point list had to be included in your 1000-point list with now changes, and the 1000-point list had to be a part of your 2000-point list. So, if you had 7 Tac marines with a Melta gun in your 500 point list, that until would be in the 1000 and 2000 point list with no changes. It made for some interesting list building.

Most of my Painted Nids... and three random objective markers

Most of my Painted Nids… and three random objective markers

The three missions were as follows:

Round 1:
Table size: 4×4
Deployment: Dawn of War
Mission: 1 Objective will be placed by each player in their own deployment zone, 1 objective placed in the center of the table (which functions as a relic with all of the Relic special rules). The Relic is with three points; the other objectives are worth 2 points each.
Secondary Objectives: Slay the Warlord, Line Breaker

Round 2:
Table size:
6×4
Deployment: Clash of the line (Arrowhead. Short Table edge, form a triangle, furthest point is 24 inches from the center of the short table edge).
Mission: Players set up 5 objectives in “No man’s land” following standard objective deployment rules. These objectives are scored at the start of the player turn and gain the controlling player 1 point.
Secondary Objectives: Slay the Warlord, Attrition (Army which has destroyed the most enemy units gains a victory point)

Round 3:
Table size: 6×4
Deployment: Dawn of War
Mission: Crusade (each objective is worth 3 points)
Secondary Objective: Slay the Warlord, Line Breaker, Last-man standing (The army with the most surviving units gains one additional victory point)

Ok, now onto the “amazing” lists I decided to field. My 500-point list consisted of a Flying Hive Tyrant with 2 twin-linked devourers w/ Brainleech worms, 2 units of 10 Termagants, and an Exocrine. This was probably my most competitive list. At the 1000 point level, I added the Swarmlord, a Hive Crone, and 2 Biovores, and this is where my list started getting a little wacky, and not all that competitive. Though, at 1000 points, two flying MCs are pretty tough… or should have been, but I will get to that later.

At 2000 points, I thought I wrote a list that was more fun than competitive. Added to the 1000 point list was a full Tyrant Guard Brood to make the Swarmlord a little more survivable. I also added an Haruspex, a close combat MC that isn’t all that good at close combat. 2 Pyrovores… yea, I have no idea why. A venomthrope to give some units a cover save. Next I added a full brood of Raveners with rending claws because I love playing them and they are so very pretty. And the last addition was a Trygon Prime with adrenal glands. The theme was for my army to be fully painted and fun. Not so competitive.

My first round was a bye, but I got to play my 500 points against the Whit (the store owner) and his Chaos Marines. My two termagant squads fled off the board after failing a synapse check, and the Flying HT periled causing himself a wound. However, the only wound not cause by me on my own army was against the Exocrine in Close Combat. Really it was a fun, if silly game.

Load survivors of the 500-point game.

Loan survivors of the 500-point game.

My second round paired me up against the Tau player. This did not go well. He had a unit of three Skyrays, some broadsides, and 2 breacher squads. I know he had other units, but these three wrecked me. The Flying HT was hit with 12 missiles and just disappeared. A breacher squad shot the Swarmlord in the face, eliminating my other synapse creature. Everthing else seemed determined to fail leadership tests and just plant themselves on the board. I wasn’t tabled, but it was a bad loss. It was not a close game. I did score some points, but not enough to really call it a close game.

An Eldar army I never had to face.

An Eldar army I never had to face… thankfully.

Round three was a bit of a surprise. Space Marines arrived via Drop Pod in my face. Neither of us thought we were going to have a good game. My opponent used ignores cover rounds on my venomthrope (and gave them rending, which I didn’t get), and took away my cover save bonus in turn 1. The hive guard brood disappeared shortly after (and the Swarmlord was left with 1 wound) thanks to three Grav-Centurions. After that though, things went very well for me. I took out the Grav-Centurions by making them take hits with the psychic scream. Biovores actually cause 2 wounds on his jump unit. The Swarmlord and the Raveners slaughtered his veteran squad in close combat (The Raveners were almost wiped out by his Ironclad Dred in the next few rounds of Close Combat). But really, after that first round of losses, my army stepped up and did a lot of damage. The Haruspex killed a drop pod and…. Well, that’s it really. My hive crone used vector strike on his flyer, giving me the advantage in aerial combat. It wasn’t pretty for the marines, even with all the grav weapons he had. Honestly, I think he deployed them a little close to me.

It was a fun tournament, and I managed to pull out second place (out of 5). Thank you to my opponents for some fun games… even when I was nearly tabled.

Fear of the Unknown

This past weekend a friend from New Jersey decided to make a last minute trip to visit me and get in a game of 40K. Now, it’s been quite a while since I last played him, and he is the only person I play who uses the Space Puppies. I had no idea what I was getting into. I had no idea what the new codex plays like. I had no idea what units my friend likes to field. I had no idea how good he is.

I spent a lot of time writing lists for this game. I wrote very competitive lists. I wrote lists that were fun, but not competitive. I wrote lists for the Tyranids, the Carcharodons, and I am pretty sure I even wrote a list for my Tau. I really had no clue what to take into this game.

Sadly, I settled on taking the Tyranids and a very competitive list (not the most competitive, but close). Having no idea what I would be facing, I took a double CAD list that had 2 Flying Hive Tyrants, 2 Hive Crones, the Swarmlord and his Guard, a total of 40 Gaunts, 2 Venomthrope units, and Exocrine, and 9 Raveners with rending claws. The mission had three objectives… that never really came into play.

It really was a one sided game. We did make it to turn five, but it was turn five where I tabled him. You name it; I was able to remove the unit from play. 2 units of Terminators? Raveners and the Swarmlord took them out. Puppies to absorb some wounds? Hive Crone flame templates. He took Long Fangs for his anti-air and I proceeded to pick them off a little at a time with the Hive Tyrants. He did make some target priority decisions that I may not have made, but even if he did attack the units I would have, I am not sure it would have made much of a difference.

By the end of the top of turn 5, I had two of the three objectives, line breaker, and slay the warlord. The wolves took first blood. That last objective? The final terminator was standing on it, while in close combat with the Swarmlord. My opponent admitted that the last round of combat would have probably killed that terminator.

I over compensated, and I feel really bad about that. It was not my intent to have such a one sided game. Yes, I asked if he had flyers, and he said no, but he had said that he had anti-air. If I had known that it was just one unit of Long Fangs, I would have dropped two flyers at least.

Competitive games are what I like, not lopsided victories. I can’t even say “At least I took Raveners”, since those Raveners tore through 5 Terminators, one drop pod, and about 30 Blood Claws. Sure, then ended up feeling off the board in turn 5, but they more than tore through the marines.

Maybe next time I will take a softer list… or at least let him decide if my list is tougher than her want to face.

At least through out the game he kept his good humor.

Nurse Sharks vs. Tau

Today I got my first game in with my Carcharodon and Sisters allies lists. I did have to borrow the sisters from my opponent (I did have the Rhino and Immolater). This was my fluffy list, with the Sisters being sent by the Imperium to spy on the Carcharodons after the Badab War. My list consisted of the following (2000 points):

HQ –
Tyberos
Captain Isurus w/ Bike, Teeth of Terra, Artifcer Armour

Troops –
8 Bikers w/ 2 Grav-guns
Tactical Squad w/ Melta, Rhino
Tactical Squad w/ Melta, Rhino

Fast –
Stormtalon w/ Skyhammer Missiles

Elite –
Honorguard w/ 8 marines, Chapter Banner, Land Raider (w/ Multi-melta)

HQ (Allies) –
Canoness w/ Rosarius, Powersword, Book of St. Lucius
Sisters Command Squad w/ 4 Sisters, one Hospitaler, 4 flamers, Immolator (Multi-Melta)

Troops (Allies) –
Battle Sister Squad w/ Melta, Rhino

Our mission was Deadlock from the Malestrom mission set with the Vanguard Strike deployment map. I deployed first, and went first.

Since I didn’t take notes, I am going to have to go off memory here. Turn one consisted of my moving everything forward, getting off a few shots, killing a few models, and scoring a grand total of zero objectives. My opponent, however, was able to destroy two of my Rhinos, gaining first blood, shot up some other units, and scored four objectives. However, this is where the weird rolling started. The bike squad took a lot of firepower in turn one, but only lost one bike thanks to a combination of low hits, low wounds, and a lot of Armour saves. It was very much above average rolling for me and below for my opponent.

In Turn two, I was not able to draw any objective cards. Again, I moved the bike squad up and got them into range of the Riptide. In the shooting phase, I knocked the Riptide down 3 wounds (and knocked off the drones), killed the sniper unit, and took off a hull point off of the Hammerhead. This time, I was able to score 4 objectives. My opponent got one of his two drone units, his skyshark flyer, and a unit of Crisis Suits out of reserve this turn. I forgot about the sheer amount of firepower that the Tau can bring to bear. I lost a hull point on the flyer, took more hits to my bike squad (but thanks to some insane rolling, not that many wounds), lost a few more troops, and lost a large chunk of my Honor Guard.

From here, things get a little fuzzy with my memory. I know that my sisters charged the crisis suits. The Immolator was glanced out, but the Sisters Command Squad inside wrecked the drones that did it. Isurus and his bike squad caused the Riptide to flee off the table, but were finally put down by the Tau.

By the end of the game Tybers, the Land Raider, 5 Marines, the Canoness, and some sister will still on the board. My opponent still had the Broadsides, a lot of Firewarriors, and his HQ was still among the living. Even the Land Raider shows the luck of my opponent. In one turn he hit it with three rail guns from the Broadsides, but rolled three 1’s when rolling for armour pen.

The final tally was 9 (including line breaker) for me, and 7 (Including first blood) for my opponent. It was a close game, and a lot of fun.