Saturday, December 29, 2012

Batrep: Necrons Vs Chaos Space Marines, 1750 pts

Figured I'd get in one more batrep for 2012, this time with my Necrons, because I just wanted an excuse to go to battle with my lovely new Necron T-shirt. The Crimson King marches!

My List:
Overlord with Mindshackle Scarabs, Warscythe, Sempiternal Weave, Phase Shifter and Resurrection Orb
Destroyer Lord with Sempiternal Weave and Mindshackle Scarabs

20 Warriors and a Ghost Ark with a Harbinger of Eternity, Chronometron
9 Warriors and a Ghost Ark with a Harbinger of Destruction, Solar Pulse
9 Warriors with a Harbinger of Destruction

6 Canoptek Wraiths, 2 with Whip Coils and a Particle Caster
5 Scarabs
5 Scarabs

Warlord Trait: Master of the Vanguard (pfft...)

 I've taken this list out once before, against CK's Chaos Marines, and they performed admirably, essentially ending the game in 3 turns. This time round, though I aimed to put the Destroyer Lord's Preferred Enemy USR to good use, letting him hang with the Crimson King and the Warrior blob.

Ian's List:
Chaos Lord on a Bike, with Mark of Slaanesh, Veterans of the Long War, Sigil of Corruption and the Murder Sword (aiming at the Crimson King)
5 Chaos Bikers with Mark of Slaanesh, VotLW, 2 meltaguns and combimelta and powerfist for the Champion

12 Noise Marines with VotLW, Blastmaster, 8 Sonic Blasters
12 Noise Marines with VotLW, Blastmaster, 7 Sonic Blasters
6 Chaos Marines with Mark of Slaanesh, VotLW, 1 meltagun and combimelta and power sword for the Champion, all in a Rhino

3 x Predators with Lascannon sponsons and Twin-linked Lascannon turret
2 x Hell Blade

Warlord Trait: The Dust of a Thousand Worlds

I'd encountered Ian's Chaos Marines twice before. The first time was one of my first outings with my Mechanized Angels, and was a valuable education for me as I learnt just how to move with a mechanized army. The second time I faced them with my Necrons, and the pink marines were lain low by a combination of horrible luck and overwhelming firepower. Now the pink marines were back with a vengeance and, notably 8 twin-linked autocannon shots worth of airborne support. And here I am, caught with not a single flyer! Ah, well. Nothing to deter the Crimson King. To battle, I say!

Mission: The Relic
Deployment: Dawn of War. I won the roll off and deployed first. Night fighting was not active on the first turn.

Nothing fancy about either deployments. My Necrons were arrayed in the usual fashion - The Crimson King and his blob, marching down the centre, flanked by the Ghost Arks and Annihilation Barges, and a team of Scarabs on each flank. I kept the Wraiths and Destroyer Lord close to the centre, so I could send the Destroyer Lord to join the Warriors and put that Preferred Enemy to good use.

Interestingly, Ian opted to face my formation head on with his Noise Marines. Granted, he had a pretty hefty amount of anti-infantry firepower, but nothing to compare with Sean's Dark Eldar, so I wasn't really worried about them posing any real threat to my Warriors. The Predators were clustered in a corner, no doubt looking to start chewing into my vehicles from one end and work their way to the other end.

My plan on seeing our deployments was simple enough. My Warrior blob would engulf the Relic and walk away with it. Anything that came close would get shredded by massed gauss fire. All other elements of my army, notably the Scarabs and the Wraiths, were expendable and were there to draw hostile attention away from the Crimson King and the blob. So, here we go...

Friday, December 28, 2012

Looking forward: Projects for 2013!

Ah, well it's been a good year for gaming, but man, my worktable is a mess! So much stuff to work on, and so little time! Here's an army-by-army lowdown on my grande plannes for 2013, starting with the 40k side.

Blood Angels
No plans whatsoever for any expansion. I am happy with the state of my Blood Angels, especially when they're paired with the Crimson Guard. What I'd like to work on now with the Blood Angels is:
a) a workable Descent of Angels list; and
b) putting Terminators and my lovely Land Raider Redeemer to good use.


Dark Angels

Back then, Space Marine anatomy was subject to... artistic license.

Deathwing, hell yeah! It was 1st edition Space Hulk that first drew me to 40k and it's because of that that my first army is Blood Angels. Naturally, I've been interested in Deathwing for the longest time, but never got round to it, mostly because I didn't like having to muck about with a clunky 4th ed codex. Now the Dark Angels are making a comeback, I'm most eager to put together a Dark Angels army, starting with a small continget to ally with my Blood Angels...

I've had 2 flyers waiting for me for quite a while now, and for the moment I'm looking to field either 2 Doom Scythes or one Night Scythe and one Doom Scythe. Still thinking a bit on this one. I do love my good old Necron Warrior horde, but it's high time this list moved with the times and got some air support.

My Black Legion army currently holds a special place in my heart for being both the least successful and the most entertaining and characterful of all my armies. I don't know if I've mentioned it before but I'm a big fan of the new codex and the possibilities it opens up.

The tremendous versatility of the basic Chaos Marines have made for a pretty solid troops choice which has thus far performed brilliantly in every battle. The Bikers and the Spikey Bikey Lord have also been consistent performers (mostly) and the promise of insane bloody violence that they carry in every game guarantees that they'll get a LOT of attention any time they take to the field.

The Defiler is probably going to be shelved for a while, in favour of cheaper, more reliable dakka, i.e. Autocannon Havocs!

That having been said, they performed atrociously on their first outing, killing a total of 2 (!) of Ian's Traitor Guardsmen before getting pinged to pieces by lasguns. Admittedly, these guys don't quite fit with my playstyle, as I tend to favour a more in-your-face strategy. Still, I like the maths of it, and given that it's only 115 pts for the team of 5 Havocs, I figure I can afford to experiment with them.

Another expansion I've got on the way is a Helldrake, which should be arriving next year. Keep an eye out for that...

And lastly, the other direction in which I'm looking to expand the Black Legion is with the addition of Chaos Terminators, led by a Sorceror in Terminator Armour.

Also, I might want to make use of this guy:

 Still a work in progress, but it's an excellent model and I'm looking for an excuse to put it on the board.

Grey Knights
What Grey Knights? No, seriously, I've no reason to touch my little contingent of Grey Knights for a long, long time...

Imperial Guard
No plans for any major expansion, as I've no intention of building up the Crimson Guard into a real army just yet.  They just function so well as an allied contingent! Maybe I'll put together a Company Command Squad with some mean-ass guns on them, but the Crimson Guard are excellent as they are now, with the Lord Commissar and the Veterans in a Chimera, accompanied by a Vendetta and either a Manticore or a Leman Russ, depending on my mood.

Now the Warmachine...

Well, the Dark Prince just arrived in the mail, so I'll be getting him painted up ASAP. Add 1 Devastator and 1 Spriggan and I daresay that's it for my involvement with Khador, at least until the day arrives that Privateer Press decides to produce plastic Iron Fangs. 

I've been dabbing bits of paint on my Knights Exemplar and Cinerators for months now and you know what? White is the most fricking tedious colour to paint, EVER! I've had enough, and I'm going to get started on them again, with a nice can of Krylon... This is probably the major project for 2013: The Exemplar army...

Monday, December 24, 2012

IG: Sabres vs Heavy Weapon Squads

Got in a game yesterday against Ian's Traitor Guard. He uses massive swarms of painstakingly converted Infantry Squads and it's always a pleasure to take on an army with so much effort put into it. The last time I faced this army was with my Necrons in 5th Ed, I think, at which point Ian quickly learnt the horrors of facing Tesla weapons with masses of infantry.

This time round, I used Chaos Space Marines with IG allies (for the Vendetta and a Leman Russ, of course) and got defeated after a good close scrap. Ian's army has received a massive upgrade in the form of 8(!!!) Sabre Weapon Platforms (see Imperial Armour Aeronautica). If you're a Guard player, these are a seriously powerful upgrade to your army. These things can be taken in batteries of 1-3 guns instead of a Heavy Weapons Squad in an Infantry Platoon. Now let's take a look at the numbers:

Heavy Weapons Squad with 3 Lascannons
105 pts
3 stands of T3 W2 flak armoured infantry.
3 shots of BS3 Lascannons.
Probability of missing completely = 12.50%

2 Lascannon Sabres with extra crewmen
104 pts
2 x T7 W2 artillery pieces with a 3+ armour save and 2 plain Guardsmen crew members each
2 twin-linked BS3 Lascannons WITH Skyfire AND Interceptor AND free Defense Searchlights. Oh, and the Scout USR.
Probability of missing completely = 6.25%

The sheer disparity in bang for your buck is staggering. Honestly, with Sabres, what possible reason is there to ever field plain Heavy Weapons Squads? You can also kit them out with Heavy Bolters, Autocannons and, for some inexplicable reason, Heavy Stubbers. All twin-linked, Skyfire, Interceptor and what-have-you.

The only downside to the Sabre is the price tag. GBP 22 for one, compared to the Heavy Weapons Squad's GBP 24 for 3 bases. But think about it: without the extra crewman, you can put 15 of these things on the board for 750 pts. 30 T7 wounds. 15 twin-linked lascannon shots with Skyfire and Interceptor to maul any Flyer that dares come onto the board. That leaves you 1000 pts to devote to other threats, like infantry swarms or AV14 rudeness, and as we all know the Imperial Guard has a gun for every occasion.

So, what do you think? Is there any point to Heavy Weapon Teams when you can have Sabres?

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Hobby: Cheapass forests

I like nice scenery and everything, but when we're talking tabletop wargaming terrain, there's always the trade-off between aesthetics and practicality to consider. One thing I've always found lacking in the FLGS's that I frequent is the lack of forest terrain that shows a nice, clearly defined patch of forest that doesn't really interfere with the model's movement in any way. Here's a cheap (MYR 13.50, to be precise) way to get some foliage that your precious models can stand on and, even if your big, metal Dreadnought falls all over it, won't chip your beautiful paint job.

Step one, get a green rubber doormat:

Step two, draw out some suitably shaped patches on the back with a handy dandy Sharpie:

Step three, cut them shapes out and battle! Note how even my most top-heavy models, the Sanguinary Guard, can easily stand on this stuff... 

Anyways, hope this helps. Happy wargaming,y'all...

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

From the depths of the internet... Dark Angels incoming!

Saw these floating around the intertoobs. That can of ivory paint is looking like a very worthwhile investment right about now. I'm not so sure about the new Land Speeder, though...

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Brief Batrep: Blood Angels vs Dark Eldar, 1750pts

Finally got a chance to play against Sean's Dark Eldar - a Venomspam list with an insane amount of anti-infantry firepower. In this battle, I kind of returned to my roots with mechanized Blood Angels. This one's going to be somewhat abbreviated from my usual batreps as it was so gloriously fast violent I neglected to take nearly enough photos. My bad...

My Mech Angels:

The Razorbacks go to war again!

3 x 5-man Assault squads with 2 Infernus Pistols and a meltagun in a Razorback with Lascannon & twin-linked plasmagun
5-man Devastator squad with 4 missile launchers in a Razorback with twin-linked assault cannon
2 x Predators with autocannon and lascannon sponsons
Stormraven with hurricane bolters
Squadron of 2 Land Speeder Typhoons
Baal Predator

I only just realized on writing this batrep that I'd mixed up the Stormraven's place in the Force Organization Chart; I thought it was a Fast Attack choice! And this list comes to 1,730 pts only! Ah, well... Note to self: Switch out a Combipred for another Baal Predator next time. I only brought 1 Stormraven this time, seeing as 2 Stormravens is often a little more flying firepower than is sporting at my FLGS. The general strategy with this list is as follows:

- Librarian rides alone in the Stormraven, using Prescience and whatever Divination powers come in handy to make sure the Stormraven hurts stuff.
- the Razorback squads zip around and generally make a nuisance of themselves, choosing the right moment to dart forward and let the Assault squads within nuke something with their melta weapons when the opportunity arises. The Devastators' Razorback will be following closely and just tearing into whatever it can with that assault cannon.
- long range fire support will be provided by the Devastators and the Combipreds.
- the Baal and Typhoons wait in reserve for a chance to put their firepower where it really hurts.

Sean's Venomspam:

 2 Haemonculi with Liquifiers
3 x 4 Kaballite Trueborn with 4 blasters in a Venom with 2 Splinter Cannons
6 x 5 Warriors with a blaster in a Venom with 2 Splinter Cannons
3 x Ravagers with 3 Dark Lances and flickerfields

1,734 pts, by my reckoning. Those Venoms are toting 108 shots of splintery death and maiming, and the rest of the army has 36 S8 Lance shots. Vicious as hell. With that volume of shots, I'm not sure even my Stormraven could handle that. I'd never fought Dark Eldar before this battle, and this list is quite typical of many Dark Eldar lists I'd seen floating on the Net in the age of 5th Edition, so I was pretty sure it would be a solid match for my Angels.

Mission: The Scouring
Deployment: Vanguard Strike. I won the roll off and deployed first. Night fighting was not active on the first turn.

No Nightfighting and lots of targets. Those who know my playstyle will know I've little interest in objectives and mostly play to cause maximum carnage. I've a fair amount of gunishment at my disposal and with the Dark Eldar's speed, I figured there's no point in hanging back but would do better to send the Razorbacks in for a vicious scrum in the centre with my heavy support elements smashing targets of opportunity. The Typhoons, Baal and Stormraven waited in reserve and were set to arrive with a bang. So... here we go...

Other hobby updates

My Blood Angels have been seeing quite a bit of action lately as I experiment with getting the right balance of killy and fun. Hobby-wise, however, they are at a near-total standstill, other than the occasional dab of paint every now and then. Anyway, never mind them, here's what's been going on on other fronts...

Monday, December 10, 2012

Delivering the wrath of the Emperor...

... and the Crimson King! Christmas came early in my feline-infested household. Behold! The Mug of Righteous Wrath!

This here T-shirt confers a 6+ armour save and 5+ Reanimation Protocols... 

And here's a little something for when the Stormravens arrive, guns blazing...

And something to keep the dice and counters happy as the Winter Guard march for the glory of Khador...

That flag was a work in progress for months. Busy people, we are...
Ah, I love my girlfriend... :-)

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Batrep: Blood Angels & Guard vs Chaos Space Marines, 1750pts

Given the resounding success of my Blood Angel & Guard list against Edwin's Tyranids, I figured I'd had enough of that list and would really rather not inflict that level of killiness on anyone, at least no-one without some way to deal with my flyers. That having been said, it's still pretty weak in terms of claiming primary objectives, and 6th ed really is a game of objectives. So, I figured I'd give it one more spin against a list CK was putting together. Regardless of the objective actually rolled, my purpose in playing this game was to see how my list would be able handle a more conventional MEQ list. 

My List:
The Blood Angels
Reclusiarch with infernus pistol and melta bombs
Furioso Dreadnought with frag cannon and heavy flamer
7 Death Company with 2 infernus pistols and 2 power axes
Death Company Dreadnought with Blood Talons
2 Stormravens with twin-linked multimelta, twin-linked assault cannon and hurricane bolters

Land Speeder Typhoon
Land Speeder Typhoon

The Crimson Guard
Lord Commissar
Sly Marbo
Veteran Squad with 3 Grenade Launchers in a Chimera

Warlord Trait:Strategic Genius

Nothing new to this list. I've used it before, and it does what it does with startling brutality. The Warlord Trait I rolled made it even more reliable, meaning very bad news for CK in Turn 2.

CK's Iron Warriors:
Chaos Lord with Mark of Khorne, Axe of Blind Fury, Gift of Mutation and Sigil of Corruption, on a Juggernaut
10 Khorne Berserkers with Icon of Wrath, champion with Gift of Mutation and power sword
Land Raider
10 Chaos Marines in a Rhino with 2 plasma guns, champion with power fist
9 Chaos Marines in a Rhino with 1 meltagun, champion with power fist
2 Chaos Spawn with the Mark of Khorne
Maulerfiend with lasher tendrils 
5 Havocs with 4 missile launchers and flakk missile upgrades

*Note: By my reckoning, this comes to 1,791 pts.*

Warlord Trait: Master of Maneuvre

The 5 Havocs certainly caught my eye. I had done the maths before, and a salvo of 4 flakk missiles has a 7% chance of nuking a Stormraven. Fine by me. The Hellbrutes struck me as interesting, and given CK's leanings towards close combat brutality in his previous list, this list seemed pretty solid to me, with sufficient numbers of power-armoured bodies for holding objectives and enough close combat punch to give even the Death Company a run for their money.

Mission: Purge the Alien
Deployment: Dawn of War. I won the roll off and deployed first. Night fighting was active on the first turn.

Well, given the mission we rolled for, CK wasn't too optimistic about the outcome, and who can blame him? My army is designed to kill with almost no regard for taking and holding primary objectives. As such, this was a simple exercise in survival for CK and for me, it was about wiping every trace of his army off the table...

As usual, the Furioso Dreadnought rode in one Stormraven, now dubbed Goldraven since I've given it yellow stripes on its wings. The Death Company elements rode in the other, dubbed Blackraven.  This time, just because I could, I kept a Typhoon in reserve. Alrighty, then, the stage was set, lets roll some dice!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

My 2 Khador Armies: pButcher and pSorscha, 35 pts

This is just a quick post detailing the 2 army lists which I've been using with reasonable success. Now, I'm no tournament champion and I'm not in any way claiming these armies will maul everything they come up against. What I will say, however, is that these armies have evolved over several games at the FLGS where I get my weekly Warmahordes fix and, to date, they've performed well enough to have a good fighting chance against pretty much any army I've encountered. These armies are pretty straightforward in their strategies, with relatively little in the way of diabolical shenanigans and as such, lend themselves very well to introducing the art of Warmachine to newbies.

Basic Butchery

 This is the first list I can say I got proficient with, and the one that has won me the most victories. Quite conveniently, I've a batrep showing this list in action.

The general strategy is pretty much the same in all engagements. Close in carefully, with the Winter Guard taking the fore and Drakhun, Manhunter and Widowmakers on the flanks. The jacks form the 2nd wave, advancing close by the Butcher and his dog. Then push forward using the feat and a flurry of CRAs from the Winter Guard as the main punch. If possible, use the Drakhun or Manhunter to get a good charge in, because rolling 5 dice to damage is just awesome. I find that, under the influence of the feat, the Winter Guard are best used firing their CRAs in pairs; 5 or 6 shots of POW 14 + 3d6 damage is often quite enough to deal crippling damage to a heavy warjack or warbeast. And if the opponent decided to lead with his light, high-DEF infantry, just switch to grapeshot, let Kovnik Joe boost the attack rolls and watch as everything within 8" of the mighty Winter Guard just disintegrates in killer shrapnel.

An alternative strategy to use against a more aggressive opponent would be to use the Winter Guard as a cushion to catch the opponent's charge, then countercharge with the feat, Full Throttle and 2 very angry jacks. Taking the enemy's charge on the Winter Guard isn't as painful as it sounds. Put Iron Flesh and Bob n' Weave on the Guard, you've got 15 DEF 17 infantry as your screen. With Kovnik Joe, they're Tough, too! As for the countercharge, with the Butcher's feat and Full Throttle, that's boosted attack and damage rolls and charges for the meagre price of 3 Focus, with not a single one placed on the jacks themselves.

Whichever of the two strategies are used, both converge towards the same endgame. The Butcher has no interesting spells to execute flashy maneuvres or assassination runs from hitherto unforeseen angles. After popping the feat, the objective is simply to kill everything within reach. Against most competent players, this will result in the two armies being depleted to just a few models, and this is pretty much where the Butcher shines. With his excellent armour (and DEF, with Iron Flesh) and tremendous melee power, there are very few single models in Warmahordes that can stand up to a one-on-one fight with the Butcher. 

 Red Gunishment

This is a list geared towards ranged assassination. If, like me, you're wont to checking points totals, you will find this list comes to 37 pts. Note, however, that this is pSorscha's Tier 1 list, which allows me to pick up Kovnik Joe for free.

As usual, the Winter Guard form the screen. The Widowmakers will loiter around a flank, picking off targets of opportunity and generally being a nuisance. Following closely behind the Winter Guard are the Destroyers and Sorscha. At the rear, the Mortar Crews. The initial stages, while closing with the enemy, are spent pounding anything that gets within range with the many guns at my disposal. Of course, these guns aren't anywhere as precise as those of say, Cygnar or Scyrah. So, the trick is to keep Sorscha close to the front lines, moving forward, firing her Tempest and hopefully knocking something down for the Destroyers and mortars to brutalize, then darting back with Wind Rush. Alternatively, feed the Destroyers some Focus to deal some heavy hits. All this is simply a build-up to the good-bit: Sorscha darts forward, pops her feat, freezes the enemy caster, then the Destroyers and Mortar Crew go to work. If the enemy caster has some models crowded round to block line of sight, just feat anyway and whack something nearby with Tempest.

Thanks to Wind Rush and Boundless Charge, it can be surprisingly difficult for an opposing caster to escape Sorscha's feat. And of course, anyone wielding this list would do well to remember that Sorscha herself has a pretty decent weapon with Reach. If guns are not an option, Sorscha can zip up to 19" away to deal a killing blow to the more fragile breed of caster.

And that's the way my two Khadoran armies roll. I'm pretty pleased with how they've turned out. A strong core of Winter Guard and Widowmakers, and I've 2 armies with dramatically different strategies from one another, which is rather awesome, because I do get bored pretty quickly. My only regret with these 2 lists is that only after I'd acquired them, Privateer Press released this. I have to say, they look excellent, and now I find myself tempted to try putting together Supreme Kommandant Irusk's list with 2 Winter Guard Deathstars....

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Batrep: Necrons Vs CSM, 1750 pts

It's been a while since I'd last put together a battle report with the Necrons, so here's a quick one against CK's Iron Warriors. I was particularly curious how my Necrons would do against his list, seeing as its clearly made for close-range violence

My List:
Overlord with Mindshackle Scarabs, Warscythe, Sempiternal Weave, Phase Shifter and Resurrection Orb
Destroyer Lord with Sempiternal Weave and Mindshackle Scarabs

20 Warriors and a Ghost Ark with a Harbinger of Eternity, Chronometron
9 Warriors and a Ghost Ark with a Harbinger of Destruction, Solar Pulse
9 Warriors with a Harbinger of Destruction

6 Canoptek Wraiths, 2 with Whip Coils
5 Scarabs
5 Scarabs

Annihilation Barge
Annihilation Barge

Warlord Trait: Inspiring Presence, which, to Necrons, is about as useful as a box of band-aids...

Instead of the 10 Immortals and their Lord, I opted for a Destroyer Lord and 2 small Scarab swarms. I really wanted to test drive the Destroyer Lord as the numbers just looked really good to me. 160 pts for 3 T6 wounds and a 2+ armour save, zipping about at jump infantry speed, swinging a great, horrible warscythe. That's pretty awesome as it is, and Preferred Enemy and Reanimation Protocols is really just icing on the cake. Oh, and its got mindshackle scarabs, so no matter how mean the opponent, there's at least a 50% chance (even at Ld10) that the poor sucker is going to end up stabbing himself.

CK's Siege Breakers:
CK's list this time was almost identical to his original list; the squad of Cultists was left out in favour of some more bells and whistles for the CSM squads, I think. For this scrap, CK chose to roll for a Personal Trait from the rulebook, getting Master of Offence, which is absolutely useless for a Khornate Chaos Lord walking with Terminators carrying an Icon of Wrath.

Mission: The Emperor's Will
Deployment: Dawn of War. I won the roll off and deployed first. Night fighting was active on the first turn.

I placed my objective in the open, a little in front of my line, where I planned to advance. CK placed his a little behind his lines and used the Warpsmith to lower the cover save on the ruins

Because of the terrain I'd deployed over a wider front than I usually would. The Crimson King and his Warriors and Arks deployed in the usual fashion with the blob in between the 2 arks. The faster elements of the army, i.e. the Scarabs, Wraiths and Destroyer Lord sat on the flanks. At each end of the line, a nice big gun: an Annihilation Barge. The idea was to present a clear and imposing front (the Warriors) that CK would try to hurl the bulk of his forces towards.  This would absorb the abuse, all the while softening CK's army with a deluge of Gauss weapon fire while the flanks close in. The biggest threat I was worried about was the Lord and his retinue of Terminators. It was a reasonably strong close combat Deathstar unit which I think could reliably hit my Warrior blob in close combat hard enough to cause them to break and run, even assuming the Crimson King manages to have the Chaos Lord succumb to Mindshackle Scarabs.

Read on for how it played out...

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Batrep: Blood Angels & Guard vs Tyranids, 1750 pts

Right! This weekend, I had a naughty, naughty list I was itching to try...  Why naughty? Well, at my 40k FLGS of choice, flyers and anti-flyer tactics still aren't that common. Having seen the brutality of my Blood Angels FTO list, I figured I'd pair them up with the Crimson Guard to fill in the gaps in the list, i.e.:

1) To have a reasonably costed scoring unit without seriously compromising the killing power and overall strategy of the Blood Angels.

2) To have another Flyer in the skies which was cheapish and could reliably hunt enemy flyers and

3) To have a massively powerful, indiscriminately destructive piece of artillery. Whirlwinds are for pansies - give me my MANTICORE!

The result was a list designed to level massive amounts of firepower in all forms; S10 pie plates, anti-vehicle lascannons and melta weapons, anti-infantry hurricane bolters, assault cannons and frag and flame templates, general purpose shooting with typhoons and the veterans in their chimera. And just in case the need arose, a good solid close-combat punch in the form of the Death Company. All I needed was someone to test it on. Edwin kindly obliged with his Nids...

My List:
The Blood Angels
Reclusiarch with infernus pistol and melta bombs
Furioso Dreadnought with frag cannon and heavy flamer
7 Death Company with 2 infernus pistols and 2 power axes
Death Company Dreadnought with Blood Talons
2 Stormravens with twin-linked multimelta, twin-linked assault cannon and hurricane bolters

Land Speeder Typhoon
Land Speeder Typhoon

The Crimson Guard
Lord Commissar
Sly Marbo
Veteran Squad with 3 Grenade Launchers in a Chimera

Warlord Trait: Princeps of Deceit (which I didn't really use)

This is a distillation of the most lethal elements of both my Blood Angels and my Guard. As usual, the Death Company elements will be in DCRaven and the Furioso will be in Furyraven. The mobility of the flyers coupled with the range of the Typhoons and Manticore mean I can focus an insane amount of punishment pretty much anywhere I want, regardless of deployment. I do believe this is the killiest list I've concocted yet. Now to put it to the test... 

Edwin's Nids:
Hive Tyrant with Heavy Venom Cannon, Bonesabre & Lashwhip, Old Adversary, Regeneration and Armoured Shell
Tyranid Prime with 2 Bonesabres, Devourer and Regeneration
3 Tyrant Guard
3 Hive Guard
3 Hive Guard
2 Zoanthropes
Tervigon with Crushing Claws, Toxin Sacs, Regeneration and 2 psychic powers: Onslaught & Catalyst
17 Termagants with Devourers (hereinafter referred to as "Deathgaunts") in a Mycetic Spore with twin-linked deathspitter.
Tyrannofex with Rupture Cannon and Regeneration

Warlord Trait: Tenacity

Phew... 34 T6 wounds to get through... I had encountered this list (or a variant of it using the Doom of Malantai) before and the results were usually pretty dire. This is what usually happens:

1) The Tyrannofex will soak up an obscene amount of firepower. Its monstrously powerful gun demands my attention and I end up having to devote large volumes of firepower to killing it or it'll pick off key elements of my army.

2) The Hive Guard will lay down a punishing barrage of shooty death. 2 S8 shots each, ignoring cover, just really, really hurts.

3) The Tyrantstar will kill anything it touches. Nuff said.

4) The Deathgaunts will drop right in the middle of the opposing army and quite likely wipe out any infantry unit they fire at. Mostly a disrupting tactic to let the Tyrantstar close unhindered.

And against this backdrop, the Tyrant, the Tervigon and the Zoanthropes will be casting their nasty little psychic powers all over the place, buffing themselves and withering any poor sot that comes within range.

In this FLGS, this list has proven brutally effective, and every regular there has suffered at the claws of that wretched Tyrannofex. More often than not, my own encounters with this list resulted in a slow, brutal death as I try and fail to kill the big horrible beasties without getting overrun by wee little beasties....

Mission: The Relic
Deployment: Dawn of War. I won the roll off and deployed first. Night fighting was not active on the first turn.

The lack of night fighting was quite a lucky break for me, short as I was on searchlights. I knew what the Tyrantstar was capable of and I was pretty sure my Death Company wouldn't be enough to break it in one charge. So, the Grande Planne: First, alpha strike the Tyrannofex with every flyer that comes in. 2+ armour had thwarted my previous lists, but this time, I was toting multimeltas, assault cannons, lascannons and Bloodstrike missiles. That Tyrannofex was too powerful to be allowed to live. After the Tyrannofex, my next target would be his other guns - the Hive Guard. If possible, I'd send the DC Dreadnought on a mission to kill at least one squad of them. The Furioso would be sent to erase the Deathgaunts when they turned up. After that, it would simply be a matter of kiting around and overwhelming the Tyrantstar with superior flying firepower.

Sound solid? Well, here's how it played out.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Batrep: CSM & Guard Vs CSM, 1750 pts

I'd finally put enough paint on my Crimson Guard not to be ashamed of putting them on a wargaming table and was itching for a scrap. Fortunately, I found a worthy one in the form of 1750 pts of Iron Warriors. So, straight to business...

My List:
The Black Legion
Chaos Lord on bike, with Mark of Khorne, Sigil of Corruption, Axe of Blind Fury, gift of mutation (Blademaster)
10 Chaos Marines with 2 meltaguns, extra close combat weapons and a lightning claw and meltabombs for the champion, all in a Rhino ("Melta Squad 1")
10 Chaos Marines with 2 meltaguns and a lightning claw and meltabombs for the champion, all in a Rhino ("Melta Squad 2")
7 Bikers with Mark of Khorne, 2 meltaguns, Icon of Wrath and a lightning claw and gift of mutation (fail!) for the champion
Forgefiend with 2 Hades Autocannons
Vindicator with Siege Shield

The Crimson Guard
Lord Commissar
Sly Marbo
Veteran Squad with 2 Grenade Launchers in a Chimera

Warlord Trait: Hatred Incarnate

CK's Iron Warriors (the Siege Breakers)
The full list and its intended usage can be found on CK's blog. I have to say, it looks nice and solid, geared to close quickly and deal massive damage around Turns 2 and 3 with assault and medium range gunishment. Those 2 Vindicators and the Maulerfiend could prove to be a problem if left alone, so I'd target them first, hopefully leaving me free to take control of the field with superior firepower. As he mentioned in his write-up of this list, it is susceptible to flyers, having no flyers of any sort or any Skyfire weapons. Good news for my Vendetta, then...

Warlord Trait: Black Crusader (haha!)

Mission: The Relic
Deployment: Hammer and Anvil. I won the roll off and deployed first. Night fighting was active on the first turn.

I suppose you could pretty much guess my plan from my deployment. The Rhinos and Chimera move up 12" on turn 1, lighting up targets of opportunity with their searchlights. My big guns, i.e. the Forgefiend, Vindicator and Manticore will then proceed to nuke anything that gets lit up. The Guard will be lumped with the task of grabbing the relic and making a break for it, after which all other elements are just there to cover their retreat. Here's how it actually went...

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

KR Multicases are tough...

... and comfortable. So attests my cat.

WIP: The Crimson Guard

I swear, one the greatest strokes of marketing genius on GW's part was making Allies an official (and controlled) part of 6th ed list building. For the longest time, I'd been sitting on my Guard, wondering when in blazes I'd get the energy to paint enough of those horrible hordes of flashlight-armed mere mortals to actually see them in action. Now, with the option of allies, I get to attach the glorious, mighty guns of the Imperial Guard without having to while away absurd amounts of time churning out enough Troops to field a legal army.

So, I've finally gotten properly started on getting the Guard on the table and here's what's cooking:

Simple stuff, really. A little injection of pure brutality for any army I field:

Lord Comissar
Sly Marbo
Veterans in a Chimera
Vendetta Gunship

Haven't settled on the loadouts for the Commissar and the Veterans yet, but a Vendetta is always a solid choice. And I just love the sheer ludicrous firepower the Manticore has. Yes, I know it's fragile and squishy and is just inviting some nawty trick from my foes... That's kind of the point. There's a few ways to play this:

1) I could castle up and protect it, making it more trouble than it's worth to attack it. With the right primary detachment, one can draw the opponent into a horrible game of attrition, running into my guns while the Manticore piles on the pressure in the form of Strength 10 pie plates.

2) I could deliberately leave it unprotected. Doing this leaves an enticing target for the enemy, taking attention from the rest of the army. How unprotected kind of depends on what I'm facing and what I can expect the enemy to throw at it.

Of course, there's always the off-chance that, me being me, I'll throw all cunning plans out the window and revel in the joy of bring big honking explodey rocket death to the battlefield...

I also figured I'd make use of Sly Marbo. Always useful to have one BS5 AP2 battlecannon shell tucked aside, just in case, yeah?

Anyway, that's it for this update. There's painting to be done...

Btw, that colour is Krylon Burgundy, drybrushed with Mephiston Red. The Guardsmen haven't been drybrushed yet, so you can see the difference a little drybrushing makes.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Chronicles of the Spikey Bikey Lord

One of the big advantages I feel 40k has over Warmachine is the sense of narrative. Since 6th edition came out it just seems to me that 40k isn't so much a deeply cerebral duel of cunning and finesse as Warmachine but is more simply about fun and watching an awesome story unfold on the board. I find what really adds to this is the way characters work.

I don't know about the rest of you 40k players out there, but I like the Look Out Sir! and challenge rules. It really gives a sense of the characters in your army standing out from the crowd. They don't feel like faceless grunts anymore, you can kit your sergeants and captains and lords and what-have-yous out so each is a minor hero in your army. The wound allocation rules force you to be that little bit more careful with them. Characters have made the game more characterful.

Anyway, what brought this about was the way my Chaos Marines have been playing lately. Around the time I created him, I'd also been toying with the idea of Space Wolves. On reading the Space Wolf codex, I loved the idea of an army centered around sagas and telling the story of whatever great hero (or 4, in the case of Space Wolves) you've lovingly crafted to lead your army. I've always been attached to that idea, and my Necrons and Chaos Marines, while not my most lethal armies, have always been a little special to me for being my more characterful. My Necrons, with the Crimson King marching with rank upon rank of relentless, implacable Warriors. My Spikey Bikey Lord, hurtling into battle with his cohorts, ever questing for Daemonhood, and somehow falling behind his bike.

The new Chaos Space Marine Codex has been very kind in this respect. 40k feels like more than a game. It feels like something from the Black Library. Across the battlefield, you're drawn into the myriad of little stories that play out as each aspiring champion fights tooth and nail for daemonhood, and at the head of it all, SBL the Cursed. I haven't figured out a name for him yet, but he will most certainly have the words, "the Cursed" behind his name. For the moment, we'll call him SBL for short. Why? Here's how his first 2 battles went.

Battle 1: 1750 pts vs Jun Tseng's Chaos.
SBL takes the lead, first blazing away with his bike's guns at some nearby hostiles as they spilled out from their shattered transport. Seeking a foe worthier of the attentions of the Axe of Blind Fury, he and his squad roared across the battlefield to smash into none other than Huron Blackheart, the Tyrant of Badab! They dueled mightily to a standstill, both reduced to their last wounds and then, the fates turned their backs on SBL. The daemon in the Axe of Blind Fury turned on him, and SBL fell most ignominiously to his own weapon...

Later in the battle Huron was slain by overwatch fire from SBL's squad. 

Battle 2: 1750 vs Red's Blood Angels and Tau alliance
Once again, SBL and his squad zoom into the teeth of the enemy's guns. This time, though, those guns included 3 demolisher cannons belonging to Blood Angel Vindicators. Still, in the manner of a true Lord with the patronage of the Ruinous Powers, his squad were there as mere meatshields for him to get close enough bring the Axe of Blind Fury the blood of his foes. A team of Crisis Suits were first to face his wrath. Overwatch fire from plasma rifles and a lucky swing took 2 wounds off SBL, but he tore them and their drones to pieces while the rest of the bikes held the attention of other big guns. After finishing with them, a nearby squad of 5 assault marines found themselves on the nasty end of SBL's daemon weapon. And as he ripped the hapless marines to shred, the Ruinous Powers saw fit to touch their enterprising son with a blessing of change! Bike, rider and diabolical weapon were twisted and melded together as hellish powers wrought them anew... into a spawn. Moments later a squad of Fire Warriors arrived from reserve and blasted the abomination that used to be SBL to pieces. 

And that's the story so far of SBL the Cursed. I expect there will be many more similarly entertaining, albeit pathetic tales to be told, but for now I'll leave you with just the two. Happy wargaming, all...

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Batrep: Chaos Marines vs Chaos Marines, 1750 pts

Civil war has come to the Black Legion! Got a game in against Jun Tseng with my Black Legion against his Black Legion. Neither of us have Heldrakes ready, so it's mostly groundpounding all round.

My List:
Chaos Lord on bike, with Mark of Khorne, Sigil of Corruption, Axe of BlindFury, gift of mutation (Meteoric Charge)
Plain old Hellbrute
10 Chaos Marines with 2 plasmaguns, extra close combat weapons and a lightning claw and gift of mutation (Witch Eater) for the champion, all in a Rhino ("Plasma Squad")
10 Chaos Marines with 2 meltaguns, extra close combat weapons and a lightning claw and gift of mutation (fail!) for the champion, all in a Rhino ("Melta Squad 1")
10 Chaos Marines with 2 meltaguns and a lightning claw and gift of mutation (+1 Attack) for the champion, all in a Rhino ("Melta Squad 2")
7 Bikers with Mark of Khorne, 2 meltaguns, Icon of Wrath and a lightning claw and gift of mutation (fail!) for the champion
Forgefiend with 2 Hades Autocannons
Defiler with Havoc Launcher
Vindicator with Siege Shield

Warlord Trait: Master of Deception (3 units)

1,747 pts in total. Note that in my list, wherever possible to take Veterans of the Long War, I took it. It's bad enough that these twits don't even have And They Shall Know No Fear. I was a bit disappointed with the gifts of mutation, seeing as ALL FIVE turned out to be nigh useless in my army.

Jun Tseng's list:
Huron Blackheart
Khornate Daemon Prince with wings, power armour,  Axe of Blind Fury, ichor blood and the Burning Brand of Skalathrax (285 pts!!!)
Plain old Hellbrute (Yeah, we both got Dark Vengeance 'brutes...)
10 Khorne Berserkers with powerfist and meltabombs for the champion, all in a Rhino with havoc launcher
10 Chaos Marines with Mark of Khorne, Veterans of the Long War, 1 flamer and powerfist and meltabombs for the champion, all in a Rhino with havoc launcher
10 Chaos Marines with Mark of Khorne, 1 flamer and powerfist and meltabombs for the champion, all in a Rhino with havoc launcher
5 Warp Talons with Mark of Khorne and 2 gifts of mutation (Fleet and +1 wound) for the champion
1 Obliterator
1 more Obliterator
5 Havocs with 4 Autocannons

Warlord Trait: Master of Deception (2 units)

1,771 pts, by my reckoning. Bear in mind that, unlike myself, Jun Tseng has elected to give Veterans of the Long War to only ONE of the Chaos Marine squads. Also, his Chaos Marines are all armed with bolt pistols and chainswords. Those troops were completely geared for close combat, and could easily achieve 4 attacks each on the charge. I'd have to take care to avoid that...

Mission: Crusade. 4 objectives.
Deployment: Hammer and Anvil. I won the roll off and deployed first. Night fighting was active on the first turn.

Okay, I haven't played to objectives for a while, no thanks to my ludicrous Blood Angel FTO list, so I need a better plan than "kill everything in sight". My plan this time round was for the Spikey Bikey Lord to take the center, advancing under close fire support from the Daemon Engines (the Forgefiend and Defiler). If all went well, the onslaught would hit hard enough for my Chaos Marine squads to roll forward along each flank as a second wave, mopping up after the boss and the beasts. Even if the intial onslaught didn't quite deal as much damage as I'd like, 30 MEQs with melta and plasma weapons should be able to do something, right?

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Batrep: Blood Angels Vs Space Marines & Guard Allies, 1750 pts

It had been a long, long time since I'd gotten a good game in against Wong, so I was rather pleased to get a chance this weekend. At first, I was looking to get an excuse to try out my fledgeling Chaos Marines, but I figured this would be an excellent opportunity to try out my most lethal list to date against one of the most experienced and solid players I know, so, out came the Angels...

My slightly tweaked Blood Angels FTO list:

Reclusiarch with plasma pistol and melta bombs
Furioso Dreadnought with frag cannon and heavy flamer
10 Death Company with 2 power swords and 2 power axes
Death Company Dreadnought with Blood Talons
5 Devastators with 4 missile launchers
2 Stormravens with twin-linked multimelta, twin-linked assault cannon and hurricane bolters
2 Baal Predators with heavy bolter sponsons
2 Land Speeder Typhoons

Only a slight alteration from my previous list - I switched out the Devastators' weapons for missile launchers and used the extra points to give my Reclusiarch a plasma pistol and meltabombs. I also dropped the Land Raider Redeemer to bring it down to good old 1750 pts.

Wong's Marines and Guard:
Cato Sicarius
5 Assault Terminators with Hammers and Shields
Land Raider with multimelta and extra armour
10-man Tactical Squad with lascannon, plasmagun and the Tank Hunter USR
5-man Scout Squad with boltguns, and a Sergeant carrying a combi-plasma and sniper rifle
Land Speeder Storm
Storm Talon with twin-linked heavy bolter
Company Command Squad with Astropath and Master of Ordnance
Veteran Squad with 3 grenade launchers, led by Gunnery Sgt Harker
2 Vendettas with heavy bolter sponsons

This is the list as far as I could remember, though there's a couple of bits of wargear that I'm forgetting. That's mostly coz I slew the poor devil carrying said wargear before he got a chance to use it.

Just looking at the list, I knew this promised to be interesting. Troops choices clearly meant for holding and stealing objectives, a Terminator Deathstar in the traditional Land Raider, and some serious air superiority firepower, which is to say, guns which could concievably knock one of my Stormravens out of the sky before they unleash their cargo.

Mission: Crusade. 3 objectives.
Deployment: Dawn of War. Wong won the roll-off and let me deploy first.

As usual, I kept a Furioso in one Stormraven (Furyraven) and the Death Company elements in the other (DCRaven). On Wong's side, Sly Marbo, the Stormtalon, the Land Speeder Storm carrying the Scouts, the Vendetta squadron and Harker's squad were in reserve.

I knew this wasn't going to be an easy fight, especially given what my list was designed to do. I had deliberately placed the two of the three objectives in the open, where I could easily blast or charge anything that tried to claim it. Being unable to claim objectives myself, I knew I had to kill all his scoring units. After that, my only path to victory lay in the secondary objectives. Is my list killy enough? Only one way to find out...

Thursday, October 18, 2012


So... much... gold...

Man, I can't even imagine what painting a Heldrake will be like...

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Just a couple of pics of some stuff I'm painting up for my first 6th ed CSM list...

8 S8 AP4 shots. I don't care that it's only at BS3, that kind of dakka, with a model that looks this cool is simply going to find a way into this army. Since my Helbrute, I've kind of decided that all daemonic fleshy bits will be done in Mephiston Red and Devlan Mud.  Speaking of the Helbrute...

Here he is, in all his glory. Just some minor touching up left to do, like highlights and sticking more stuff on the base, but I'm perfectly happy to let him on the board as is. Here's a look at the back:

I swear, Devlan Mud/Agrax Earthshade is just magic. 

The new Chaos Space Marines are quite possibly the most flexible troops choices in the game. As such, I've bulked up the ranks with some more plug n' play marines. You may notice there are two shades of black here. After spraying I noticed that Krylon's Matt Black was a little too Matt, almost grey. So I pulled out a pot of old, old Undercoat Black, which I found gave a deeper, slightly glossy black finish.

Here's another Dark Vengeance model that just looks too cool not to play. At bare minimum, you're looking at 100 pts worth of Chaos Lord with a plasma pistol, power sword and Veterans of the Long War.  One could easily give him a Sigil of Corruption and Mark of Tzeentch. A 40 pt 3++ save, compared to 20 pts for the loyalist Captain's Storm Shield, BUT you get to have 2 close combat weapons... And let's say that sword is the Murder Sword. 160 pts of badass, and woe betide the target of the Murder Sword. He hasn't got a place in my army yet, seeing as the position of Warlord is taken by the Spikey Bikey Lord.

Man, I love Mephiston Red... 

I've neglected the Defiler for many months now. He's another model which I field coz it looks cool, though back in 5th, AV 12 was pretty crap for the points you pay. Now, however, he's stomping around with 4 hull points, a 5++ save and It Will Not Die. And the battlecannon is even more hurty on vehicles. Hell, yes...

One thing I noticed about the new Codex and the buzz all over the net is that the Chosen are rubbish. Well, they're crazy expensive to field, and there are simply better options in the codex. Still, no point letting those lovely Dark Vengeance sculpts go to waste, eh? I think they'll look absolutely stunning as Aspiring Champions. They certainly look nice and bulky compared to my current ones.

Warmachine batrep: Khador vs Skorne, 35 pts

It's been a while since I'd done one of these. It's not that I'd stopped Warmachine, it's just that my last couple of games were:

1) Using Irusk. Badly. Long, stupidly draggy game, too boring to record in a battle report. Completely my fault for mistiming my feat and reducing the game to a long ugly slugfest of attrition.

2) A doubles game, totalling 70 pts a side. Even longer and draggy-er and boring.This is where I found that Warmachine's system of model-by-model combat, while more detailed, more intuitive and generally fairer than 40k, is just slow as hell in larger games.

They weren't a complete waste of time, though. In those games I'd learnt that 35 pts is the absolute limit of my interest in Warmachine. At any higher points value, the game system is simply too slow to keep my attention. Also, I've established that I have no interest whatsoever in the use of Colossals. At 35 pts they unbalance the game, so I hear. Any higher number of points in a game is too slow, as I'd mentioned. And, at the end of the day, if I deign to purchase, assemble, paint and put a model on the table purely for its awesomeness... It's going to be in 40k.Colossals look nice and all, but seriously, at that price for something that size, just gimme a Heldrake or Land Raider Crusader or something. At least I'd get more mileage out of them.

Don't get me wrong here. I appreciate Warmachine as a quicker, smarter and deeper game at smaller scale engagements. But in terms of the fun of the fluff, the depth of the mythos and the raw awesome of the models... Warmachine cannot hold a candle to 40k. A Cygnar Cyclone, though it fulfills the same battlefield role, is a tinkertoy compared to a Forgefiend. A Winter Guard Deathstar is a small scruffy mob compared to a Valhallan Infantry Platoon. Lich Lord Terminus is a mewling child compared to Anggarath the Unbound.

What I'm saying is, I like Warmachine for a very different reason from why I like 40k. I like Warmachine because it's a very good, deep and engaging game at 35 pts. I like 40k because I like watching pure, unreasoning, epic sci-fi violence unfold.

Anyway, I got in a game of Warmachine against Lexiss' Skorne. I'd gotten murdered using Irusk against that list, and was most eager to try out my Butcher against it, mostly to assure myself that I hadn't suddenly gotten really crap at this game...

My army:
Orsus Zoktavir, the Butcher of Khardov
10-man Winter Guard Infantry, with 3 Rocketeers and Unit Attachment
Kovnik Joe
Widowmaker Marksman
Man-O-War Drakhun

Ah, my good old Butcher list. Nice and straightforward, with a good, righteous kick to it on feat turn. Against high DEF infantry, there's nothing quite like the Butcher's feat and Kovnik Joe's speeches with the Winter Guard's grapeshot. Against high ARM targets with lotsa hitboxes, just switch to solid slug CRAs, for boosted POW 14 goodness. A good opening salvo from the Guard generally softens up an opposing army enough that the ensuing close quarter violence ends with the Butcher on top. 

Lexiss' army:
Master Tormentor Morghoul
Bronzeback Titan
Titan Gladiator
Molik Karn
4-strong Paingiver Beast Handlers
Paingiver Task Master
5-strong Gatorman Posse

I had encountered this list once before, and that was the game in which I used pIrusk, which I mentioned earlier. I had gotten so used to the Butcher's way of sudden, vicious carnage and pSorscha's  assassination methods that Irusk was something of an engima to me. As such, I hesitated somewhat and found to my dismay that outside of feat turn, it was really hard to squeeze out the hitting power to kill Lexiss' list before it killed me.

We played a simple caster killing game. I forgot to take a pic of our deployment, so just read on for Turn One...

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Black Legion stirs...

Just got my hands on a copy of the new Chaos Space Marine Codex, and I have to say, I like it. 3 things in particular stand out:

1) BIKES! Seriously, these have gotten SO much better! In the past, my 7-man bike squad with 2 meltaguns, a powerfist champion and an icon of Khorne was 321 pts. Now, I can get the same, plus Veterans of the Long War, Furious Charge and rerolling charge distance for 236 pts! Spikey Bikey Lord is pleased, too. With a Mark of Khorne, the Axe of Blind Fury and his posse rolling with him, he's hurtling at the foe with 6 + 1d6 S7 I5 AP2 attacks on the charge! This is NOT something you want to face in a challenge!

2) Troops choices - The basic Chaos Marine has gotten a LOT more versatile. Starting at a paltry 13 pts for a basic MEQ statline and equipment, there's a crazy tonne of options for a Chaos general to get just the right flavour out of your CSM squads. Also of note are the Cultists. I've always liked the image of swarms of screaming, psychotic Cultists running willy-nilly into the enemy's guns as Chaos Marines march in steady, disciplined ranks behind them. At last, Chaos players have a codex that actually makes such a thing viable on the tabletop! The question is... could I be bothered to paint that many Cultists?

3) Daemon engines - I'd always loved the whole concept of the Chaos Marines marching alongside diabolical constructs blending technology and sorcery in equal measure. As such, I'd fielded a Defiler and a Daemonically possessed Vindicator. Now, there are even more daemon-haunted freaks in the Chaos army, notably the Forgefiend/Maulerfiend and the Heldrake. Now, together with the Defiler, all of these have Daemon, Daemonforge and It Will Not Die. A 5+ invulnerable save at all times PLUS the ability to regenerate lost hull points each friendly turn on a 5+! Sounds pretty good to me. I've already put it my order for a Forgefiend, and can't wait to unleash its gunishment...

Well, that's enough ecstasizing for now. Stay tuned and we'll see if I can put a Chaos army through its paces...

Sunday, October 7, 2012

WIP: Hellbrute progress

Dabbed a little more paint on. I like how it's turning out, and just can't wait to see it in battle, even though I get the feeling it'll perform pathetically. Still, if I've a spare slot and the points costs isn't too prohibitive...

The horny, boney, toothy bits were all based in Screaming Skull, washed with Devlan Mud, then touched up again with Screaming Skull.

I'm still thinking about what colour to paint the all that piping. Stay tuned, and we'll see the finished product soon enough...

Friday, October 5, 2012

Batrep: Blood Angels Vs Black Templars, 2000 pts

Vengeance! The Blood Angels demand vengeance! Got a game in against Louis' Black Templars on Friday night. From my last scrap against Louis' Black Templars, I figured they were a most worthy foe that I didn't need to pull my punches against, so I threw together the meanest, most vicious list I could concoct. Naturally, this meant the Grey Knights could just bugger off and stay the hell away from the battlefield... 

My Blood Angels FTO list:
Furioso Dreadnought with frag cannon and heavy flamer
10 Death Company with a power sword, a power axe and a thunder hammer
Land Raider Redeemer with multimelta and extra armour
Death Company Dreadnought with Blood Talons
5 Devastators with 4 plasma cannons
2 Stormravens with twin-linked multimelta, twin-linked assault cannon and hurricane bolters
2 Baal Predators with heavy bolter sponsons
2 Land Speeder Typhoons

This is a variant of the list I'd fielded against Ian, with a little change in overall strategy. Basically, I've decided to ignore all this objective-taking silliness and just go for maximum killing power. Hence, FTO (F*** the Objectives).  The 2 dreadnoughts and the Death Company would come in on the Stormravens, of course, and do their thing, charging where it hurts most. I was most interested to see if the sheer volume of attacks from the Death Company would be enough to overwhelm Louis' Assault Terminators. At I4, I was hitting with 35 S5 attacks with rerolls to hit and wound on the charge, and a power axe and thunder hammer still waiting to go. Other than a serious Tyrantstar, I can think of very few things in the game that can withstand that kind of abuse. Let's put it to the test...

Louis' Black Templars:
Reclusiarch with Thunder hammer and 2 cenobyte servitors, one with a Holy Relic
Reclusiarch with Thunder Hammer and jump pack
Emperor's Champion
Venerable Dreadnought with Assault Cannons and Tank Hunter
5 Sword Brethren Terminators with 2 Assault Cannons and Tank Hunters
7 Sword Brethren Assault Terminators with 4 Lightning Claws, 3 shields & hammers and Furious Charge
8 Initiates and 3 Neophtes all with bolt pistols and close combat weapons, 2 Initiates with flamers
8 Initiates and 3 Neophtes all with bolt pistols and close combat weapons, 2 Initiates with meltaguns
10-man Assault squad with 2 flamers and 1 power fist, all with meltabombs
Land Raider Crusader

Vow: Accept any challenge, no matter the cost (Preferred Enemy)

This is as much of Louis' list as I could remember at the time of writing. I tried to look up what's what and tally up the points with my copy of the BT codex, but man, that thing is such a pain to read! I noted 2 mistakes with the army composition on preparing this batrep:

1) One cannot have 2 Reclusiarchs, since the Emperor's Champion is a compulsory HQ choice.
2) A Holy Relic may not be borne by a cenobyte servitor. It has to come with a Standard Bearer in a Command Squad.

I'm not sure if there are any more such errors, or even if the points tally up. My eyes hurt to even look upon that abomination of a codex...

Mission: Crusade. 4 objectives.
Deployment: Vanguard Strike. I won the roll-off and deployed first. Nightfighting was active for the first turn.

My cunning plan was simple enough. I have no scoring units, therefore everything on the table not in red armour must DIE. How? Like this:

1) Turn 1: Shoot, shoot, shoot!
2) Turn 2: Stormravens! Shoot, shoot, shoot!
3) Turn 3: DEATH COMPANY!! GRAAAARRRGGGHH!!! Shoot, shoot, shoot!
4) Turn 4 and above: Why are you still on my table?! CHARGE! SHOOT! KILL!!!

And that's the plan. All Louis had to do was get an objective and stay alive. Our tasks were exceedingly simple in theory. As for how the story played out, read on...

WIP: Hellbrute!

I got started painting this guy and I have to say, I love this model. The detail is excellent, the mould lines are easy to remove, it fits together beautifully and it's just nice to paint a nice, big, whopping monster after months and months of Angels, Knights, Khador and Necrons. Here's how he looks now:

Started with the fleshy bits first. Quite simple, really. Just Mephiston Red and a Devlan Mud wash, with a little layering of Mephiston Red to bring out the shape more. Like any Chaos Marine kit, there's loads of gold banding to paint. Still, he'll get done sooner or later.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the new codex is reasonably kind to him - I really want to field this guy! And the Defiler. And the Forgefiend. I don't know about the rest of the Chaos players out there, but I'm really excited about the prospect of daemon engines and cultists and the possibility that my Spikey Bikey Lord can possibly do some serious damage...

Anyway, enough of that. Will post more pics when the Hellbrute is done. Next up, a batrep - Vengeance of the Blood Angels!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Batrep: Blood Angels vs Orks, 1750 pts

After the hideous drubbing I'd taken at the hands of Louis' Black Templar, I was in the mood to build a list of as much gun-based brutality as I could throw together. This most certainly meant that a pair of Stormravens was a must. Anyways, I put together said list - a nice vehicle heavy list - and got in a game against Ian's Orks. Excellent! He plays a nice big horde of Orks - perfect for finding out if I had the right volume of firepower...

My Blood Angels:
6 Sternguard with combiweapons
10 Death Company with a power sword, a power axe and a thunder hammer
10 Scouts with sniper rifles, camo cloaks and a missile launcher
5 Devastators with missile launchers
2 Stormravens with twin-linked multimelta, twin-linked assault cannon, hurricane bolters and extra armour
2 Baal Predators with heavy bolter sponsons
Land Speeder Typhoon

This list is a variant of a list I'd inflicted on Louis' Thousand Sons a couple of batreps ago. The previous one was designed to get the first strike in with the Drop Pod. This one forgoes the Drop Pod and just concentrates on pure firepower, with a staggering volume of shots, and the speed to bring the army to bear where it counts. The Death Company are there to provide a great big close combat punch, with a good number of bodies to hit with 40 attacks on the charge, with rerolls to hit and wound, thanks to the Reclusiarch.

Warboss with 'Eavy Armour, Cybork Body, Power Klaw
Wierd Boy with Warp 'ead upgrade
30 'Ard Boyz with 3 Rokkit Launchas and a Nob with boss pole and power klaw
30 Shoota Boyz with 3 Rokkit Launchas and a Nob with boss pole and power klaw
30 Slugga Boyz with 3 Rokkit Launchas and a Nob with boss pole and power klaw
10 Tankbusta Boyz with 2 bomb Squigs
7 Flash Gitz
2 War Buggies with twin-linked Rokkit Launchas
Dakkajet with additional twin-linked Supa Shoota
Looted Wagon with big shoota

There were a LOT of boyz on the board, so forgive me if I don't quite remember all the details of this army. There's a little more stuff in there but for the life of me, I have no idea what. I'd faced Ian's Orks once before, using my Necrons in 5th ed. Pretty straightforward battle. He just moved as quickly as he could towards my line, ignoring the horrific casualties was taking and, after about two thirds of his army was blown away by gauss blasts and lightning death, he smashed into my lines and that was that.

Mission: Purge the Alien
Deployment: Hammer and Anvil. I won the roll-off and deployed first. Nightfighting was active for the first turn.

One Stormraven was full of Death Company and the Reclusiarch, the other held the Sternguard.

The strategies of each player were simple enough. Mine was to bring in the Stormravens and let the Death Company rip up the biggest, meanest unit they could find, i.e. the Warboss', all the while laying down salvos of shooty death with the rest of the army. Ian's was to go forward and hit things til they stop shooting at him. Utterly artless and wonderfully Orky. Here's how it went...

Batrep: Knights & Angels Vs Black Templars, 1750 pts

I'd been toying with the idea of a full-infantry list incorporating some Grey Knights,and earlier this weekend I tried out a new list. Having taken my lessons from an earlier engagement against Deathwing, I figured I needed to kit out my Grey Knights to better combat Terminators. So I put together a list, this time with a few more bodies, and hurled them against Louis' Black Templars.

My Knights & Angels:

Librarian with jump pack, Prescience and Iron Arm
Honor Guard with Storm Shield, Thunder Hammer, 2 Lightning Claws and jump packs
Sanguinary Guard with 2 Infernus pistols, 2 Plasma pistols and power fist
Sanguinary Priest with jump pack
10 Assault Marines with 2 meltaguns, Sgt power weapon and meltabombs
10 Assault Marines with 2 flamers, Sgt power weapon and meltabombs
5 Devastators with 4 missile launchers
Grey Knight Brother-Captain with master-crafted daemonhammer and master-crafted psycannon
5 Grey Knight Terminators with Brotherhood Banner, Warding Stave, Psycannon and 2 Daemonhammers

When you get down to it, a Paladin's 2 Wounds don't really make much difference when you're about to get thumped by power fists, thunder hammers, power klaws, and the like. So I figured I'd use a smaller force of plain Grey Knight Terminators and place the bulk of my points on the Blood Angels instead.

Louis' BlackTemplars:

Chaplain Grimaldus and Retinue
Emperor's Champion
5 Sword Brethren Terminators with 2 Assault Cannons
7 Sword Brethren Assault Terminators with 4 Lightning Claws and 3 shields & hammers
8 Initiates and 3 Neophtes all with bolt pistols and close combat weapons, 2 Initiates with flamers
8 Initiates and 3 Neophtes all with bolt pistols and close combat weapons, 2 Initiates with meltaguns
10-man Assault squad with 2 flamers and 1 power fist
Land Raider Crusader

Vow: Suffer not the unclean to live (+1 Strength, -1 Initiative)

Wow, this army is quite a relic! Still, in its day (and even in 5th ed) Black Templars were amongst the most lethal close combat armies in 40k. Does that still hold true in 6th? Only one way to find out...

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Batrep: Blood Angels vs Chaos, 1750 pts

This time round I tried piecing together a list that concentrates some serious Blood Angel violence in a happy little package. Louis fielded a combined force of Chaos Marines (the Thousand Sons march again, hungrey for vengeance) and Daemons. Coincidentally, I've been listening to the Fear to Tread audiobook. It's excellent stuff and I find it's a perfect accompaniment to painting my good old Blood Angels.  Anyway, the lists.

My Blood Angels: 

Librarian with force axe and plasma pistol, Warlord Trait: Princeps of Deceit
5 Sternguard veterans with 4 combimeltas and heavy flamer, in a Drop Pod
10 Death Company, with 1 each of power sword, power axe and Thunder Hammer
Death Company Dreadnought with Blood Talons
10 Scouts with sniper rifles, camo cloaks and a missile launcher
2 x Stormravens with extra armour, hurricane bolters, twin-linked assault cannons and twin-linked multimeltas
2 x Baal Predators with heavy bolter sponsons

This list has a fairly simple strategy to it.  The Scouts would combat squad and, together with the Baal Predators, take up positions on the board and basically survive. The Sternguard would drop in on the first turn and gun down either the biggest threat to my Stormravens or the most expensive thing they can reasonably be expected to seriously hurt.  With 4 combi-meltas, no single vehicle is safe, and hellfire rounds and a heavy flamer mean lots of anti infantry brutality, too. The Stormravens are each there to dive in and maul infantry with their hurricane bolters the turn they arrive. Of course, the Power of the Machine Spirit means I can let one gun - either the assault cannon or the multimelta - blast a nearby vehicle, too.  The turn after that, the Stormravens go into hover mode and unleash their cargoes where it hurts most.

There's really not much thought put into objectives in this list, other than the token Scouts. This list is designed to kill. For things with a Toughness value, there's massive amounts of infantry erasing firepower in the Stormravens, the Baal Predators, the Dreadnought and the fearsome charge of the Death Company.  For vehicles, I'm trusting in the Stormravens and the Sternguard to do their jobs and woe betide anything which isn't a Land Raider that gets charged by the Death Company...

Louis' Chaos Alliance:
11 Thousand Sons and their Aspiring Sorcerer
10 Chaos Marines with a champion with powerfist, 2 meltaguns and an Icon of Chaos Glory in a Rhino

Bloodthirster with Unholy Might and Blessing of the Blood God, Warlord trait: Target priority
15 Plaguebearers with an icon bearer
6 Flamers of Tzeentch
Daemon Prince with wings, the Mark of Tzeentch Breath of Chaos and Soul Devourer

I'm not sure what diabolical power the aspiring sorcerer was toting but it didn't matter, as we'll soon see.

Mission: The Emperor's Will
Deployment: Dawn of War. I won the roll-off and deployed first. Nightfighting was active on Turn 1.

I know it looks like I've deployed a little further ahead than Dawn of War would allow, but don't forget, all four of my units have the Scout USR. And my Warlord Trait was Princeps of Deceit.

Quick discussion on reserves:
I'm going to lay out the disposition of my forces in reserve, just so I can be sure I read the reserve rules (pg 124 of the Rulebook) right. Here's my summary of the key points of the reserve rules.

1) Half your units (rounding up) may be held in Reserve.
2) A unit and its Dedicated Transport count as a single unit for this purpose.
3) Units that MUST begin the game in reserve do not count towards the total number of units in your army for this purpose.
4) An Independent Character counts as a separate unit for this purpose, regardless of whether it has joined a unit.

Bearing in mind the above, this is how my forces break down:
In reserve (4 units):
Death Company
Death Company Dreadnought

On the table (4 units):
2 x Baal Predators
2 x combat squads of Scouts

Not counted for the purpose of calculating reserves (3 units):
2 x Stormravens (because they're Flyers. Rule 3 above.)
Sternguard Veterans in a Drop Pod (See Rules 2 & 3 above.)

That said, here's two questions I'd like to hear opinions on:
1) Did I allocate my Sternguard Veterans to the right slot?
2) Is it all right to field an army that's competely in Drop Pods (i.e. one starts the game with nothing on the table)?

Right, enough talk, let's battle!