Mission Accomplished: Ralshenik Says Goodbye

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Like his Shaqness, I leave with no regrets.

 

Hello again readers, once again it’s your absentee blog contributor Ralshenik!  Today unfortunately my writing is taking a more somber tone as I have made the extremely difficult decision to leave the hobby I have loved so much for the last several years.  This choice comes at a time in my life where I am looking to explore new personal ventures and honestly just don’t have the free time available to wargame like I want to.

As I said, this is not an easy choice, for the last 5-6 years I have thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of this hobby while making friends and memories that will last a lifetime.  I was exceptionally blessed with one of the most friendly and welcoming  group of gamers any nerd could ask for.

Though my writing experience for this blog was short-lived, it was an absolute blast to be able to share my thoughts with you guys and engage fellow gamers in conversation all throughout the world.  Severus and Co. are a great bunch of guys, I wish them and this blog nothing but happiness and prosperity.

There won’t be any gnashing of teeth or angry lamentations in this article; i’m not going to sit here and tell you the reason i’m leaving is cause the game of 40k has jumped the shark or GW is just a bunch of money hungry English devils.  I’m not going to champion some other system and explain to you why it is so much better than 40k and why you should make the choice to leave like me.  None of that is true, this is simply a personal choice made due to various circumstances in my life currently.

Consider this a goodbye letter to a game that has thoroughly entertained me over the last 6 years, as I walk out the proverbial door I do it with my head high and a bright optimism about the future.

Perhaps the cold lure of the grim dark will pull me back someday? Perhaps I (like many 40k players before me) am only experiencing the first of many retirements and un-retirements?  I would never bet against that.

For at least the foreseeable future however,  I say goodbye Warhammer 40,000, thanks for the friends and fun times.  I wish all the readers of this blog the best in their hobby times, I hope the game is as good to you as it was to me.

Farewell Twenty First Legion and the 41st Millennium!   Till the day we meet again…..

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Maelific Daemonology: For Why?

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My face for the better part of my test game against Severus

Hello folks, Ralshenik here to discuss one of the most absurd things I’ve ever witnessed in a game of 40k.  This weekend I got a chance to test out Maelific Daemonology and Oh…..my…..god……..

In that game I was able to summon over 1700 pts of extra models in an 1850 pt game, no that wasn’t a typo.  1700 pts.  15+ Plague Drones, 2 monstrous creatures, and about 40 daemonettes.  Leading to a sweeping victory in a game I had no business winning, and when I say no business winning, I REALLY mean it.

The game was long ways deployment, on a table that was sparse when it came to LoS blocking terrain against a very refined Tau list that featured a plethora of deadly shooting units (Buff Commander’d Missilesides, plasma/burst cannon crisis suits, Ion Tide, etc).  The first three turns were literally Severus’s tau shooting fish in a barrel (fish shooting fish in a barrel…..the irony).  Hell, he was even able to beat me in assault more times than I would care to mention (the highlight being Fire Warriors beating up a Plague Drone).  He was out rolling and out shooting me in a game where I had no cover to hide behind and had to take the longest possible route across the table at his army.  Given the fact me and Severus are at an equal skill level our games usually are decided by things like this; who rolls better, who does the mission/deployment favor more, etc.

None of that mattered though as he literally had no answer for my psychic powers, during each psychic phase i constantly had 20+ dice more than him, allowing me to bring in 6 plague drones and 10 daemonettes almost every turn.  As much shooting as Severus dumped in my army he probably should of tabled me almost twice over, but the fact was most of the units he was killing cost me 0 points so strategically it didn’t even matter.

Summoning is the spell everyone is talking about (and it’s stupid good) but Incursion is ridiculous at least the fact it lets you make Plague Drones is.  I was able to generate over 50 wounds worth of T5 jetpack infantry…..50 WOUNDS!!!!!  No army can deal with that much T5 except for Dark Eldar (but if you fight them you just keep making daemonettes and overwhelm them as without Eldar allies they will have NO psychic defense).  Eventually my Plague Drone conga line just overwhelmed the Tau, locked down all of his units, and grinned them down in assault.

By this time I felt like Aladdin in this scene https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7R9eHA6YiP8 and my Tzeentch heralds/Pink Horrors were the genie.  Fast forward to 2:05 to get the jist of the last few turns.

 

Daemons absolutely dominate the psychic phase, if you’re not Eldar or Grey Knights and didn’t bring a Rune Priest you don’t have a chance of stopping summons.  If you can’t stop summons you are automatically at a 1000pt disadvantage with models.  Tabling a summoning army without getting a BIG alpha strike on them will be nigh impossible.  Question being, is it too much?

Right now i’m saying yes, it’s too much in a “Necron Flyer Spam back in 6th” kind of way, meaning I see this as a list that is ridiculously overpowered currently but will be brought down to earth, much like ‘Crons where when Tau came out and had skyfire available in mass that allowed them to toast the croissants which had trolled people for so many months.

My gaming group has been discussing house rule nerfs and i’m a little iffy on the subject. House rules tend to be biased (usually unintentionally) and I don’t think it’s fair to limit an armies capability at something when it’s what they’re designed to do.  Capping psychic dice, limiting spell uses, etc is the same principle as telling a Deathwing player they can only bring so many Terminators because you don’t have that many Ap2 weapons, in my opinion.

I predict this list will be brought down to normal soon as Space Wolves are set to be released this year and I envision them being a very potent anti-psyker army (imagine if they keep Rune Priests the same O.O).  Blood Angels will probably follow suit as they are supposed to be an army of talented psykers themselves and who the hell knows what Orks will bring to the table.

The solution here is to just be selective about who you play, if you spammed night scythes at the beginning of 6th edition you eventually ran out of people to play.  No one wants to deal with a headache like that on a consistent basis and after 2-3 games of going “can I beat it?” most people will give up and realize you’re just a douche.  If you do nothing in your daemon lists for the next 3 months except spam Maelific you will run out of opponents (no one wants to fight that BS all the time)

I plan to abuse summoning for a week or two more, just to find out who (if anyone) is a bad matchup for the army and how to beat it.  Nothing would make me happier than to take a loss with it.  After that I will venture back to the flying circus as I feel rumors of it’s demise are greatly exaggerated!

Thanks for reading everyone, be back next time with some more 7th edition info!

A Brief History of My Hobby Life

I guess this will sort of a greeting to the internet at large as well as a little background about me as it relates to the hobby.  I was introduced to the world of 40k when I was in high school.  At that time the game was in its third edition.  I was sold a second hand mix of chaos space marines by a friend and so I began.

I was initially drawn to the hobby purely for the game.  At that time the fluff provided in the codices and main rule book was minimal by comparison now and I was not immediately drawn to it.  My painting skills at the time were quite poor (although there are times I feel like I haven’t improved much over the years).  Plus on a limited budget like I had at that time, I would rather spend my money on models than paints.

Overtime I end up trading that chaos army for a fantasy army (vampire counts).  The vampire counts were traded for empire.  Then the Tau came out.  A whole new race; and I fell in love with the aesthetic of the army.  I started my first army from scratch at that time, the Tau.   In terms of my love of the game, it was a competitive army, and that is what I wanted at the time.

I got bored of the tau, they succeeded with the winning aspect of the game, but there was no variety.  I was drawn back to power armor so I started a space marine army.  This was my first army that I really tried to paint well.  And I failed miserably at this.  I didn’t have the money to collect many models, so often my friends and I would proxy new units to see if we liked them before buying them.  There was no friendly local game store, so all orders were direct orders from GW.

It was at this point that my involvement in the hobby went into stasis.  I went off to college.  My armies were eventually boxed up and put into the garage at home. I had zero involvement in the world of 40k and fantasy for 7 years.  I left 40k during the beginning of 4th edition and 6th edition fantasy.

Upon leaving college and moving to Maryland I discovered a games workshop store in White Marsh.  Thus my love of the hobby was restored.  This is where I met the other members of this blog and our gaming group was forged.  Many of my Saturday’s were spent in that tiny 3 table store.  My fiancé was not to move up for a year and I lived in a tiny 1 bedroom apartment.  So I had a little disposable income, which the hobby was grateful to take.

I literally got back into the game a month before 6th edition dropped.  The manager of the GW store was kind of enough to tell me to not bother buying and learning 5th edition and just wait for 6th edition to drop.  I used that time to get my armies back up to par.  I got the old space marines and tau back from my mother’s.  To be honest, I was embraced by the poor quality of the painting, modeling, and even the priming.  Eventually I was able to salvage most of my tau army.  Ultimately, the space marines were not salvageable.

Shortly after 6th edition dropped I grew bored of my armies (again).  Tau was not appealing to play at the time, as I would need to buy a lot of models to fill out the army.  Space marines were generally considered week, and I had about 1000 points of poorly painted stuff.  I added a few units (terminators and rhinos I believe), but still yearned for something new.  It was then that I heard the voice of gork (or possibly mork) and set out to start an ork army.

I acquired the vast majority of my orks second.  I got a huge lot from a fellow gamer at the white marsh store.  I picked up several lots through craigslist.  I added several new units of course.  The orks were the first army that I really got into the painting, converting, and the underlying story.

My orks are freebooters.  I loved the pirate theme to the army.  All my orks have red striped pants.  There is a smattering of eye patches, great coats, parrots, and other pirate bits throughout the army.  Looking back, the paint scheme I choose is very colorful, perhaps to colorful.  It takes far too long for me to paint a single boy and I have hundreds of them.  Sometime I will do a better army feature article on them.

After starting my orks I still felt like I wanted something different.  This is where I get back into fantasy.  I pick up a vampire counts army.  I set standards for myself with this army.  I could only buy a box once I had painted the previous purchase.  It turns out I can paint them very quickly.  I have rapidly accumulated about 2500pts of painted VC, with about 500 more points waiting to be painted.  I have put fantasy on hold for the time being, but more on that in another article.

At this point I was feeling a little overwhelmed with my hobby.  I had acquired nearly 3000 points in orks, all of which needed repainted in my freebooter scheme.  The new tau codex had dropped and I went hog wild with new models for them.  And of course, I stripped down the old tau to start a new color scheme for the army.  I was steadily working on my VC, box by box.  The space marines weren’t getting any love.  So I sold the army.  Stupid mistake.

Since then the lovely little store in white marsh has closed.  I gaming group was displaced initially to Titan Games and Hobbies.  We have recently re-located to critical hit games.  There are pros and cons to both shops, something else I can go into later.

I have steadily progressed on both the tau and orks.  The VC was “completed” and had been shelved for the time being.  I have moved to a town house now that my fiancé is here.  Overall my hobby budget took a severe hit, so I don’t often make big purchases anymore.  I recently experienced a little hobby burn out.  I had always liked the Iron Hands, and after they finally got some rules in the new codex, so I took this as my opportunity to re-invigorate myself and start a new army.  I can cover the army and hobby burn out later.

And there you have it.  A little long winded, but that is my hobby history in a nutshell.  Hopefully this will serve to let any of you readers understand my background when I give my opinion.