Monday, September 15, 2008

‘ard Boyz Round 1 list and Battle Reports

‘ard Boyz Army Comp
Here is what I played for the first round of the ‘ard Boyz Tourney.

Ghazghull Thraka 225 pts
1 Big Mek SAG, Power Klaw, ‘eavy armor, bosspole, Cybork Body, Ammo Runt 143 pts
8 Nobz ‘eavy armor, stikbombz, Bosspole, Painboy, grot orderly, Waaagh! Banner, 2x Power
Klaw, Truk w/ Armour Plates, Grot riggers, Boarding Plank, Reinforced Ram, Wrecking Ball, 383 pts
12 Kommandos w/ 2x Burnaz and Boss Snikrot 235 pts
15 Burnaz 225 pts
15 Lootas 225 pts
12 Ork Trukk Slugga Boyz w/ Rokkit, Stikbombz, Nob w/ Power Klaw, ‘eavy armor, bosspole, Truk w/ Armour Plates, Grot riggers, Boarding Plank, Reinforced Ram, Wrecking Ball, Red Paint Job 214 pts
30 ‘ard Slugga Boyz w/ 3x Rokkitz, Nob w/ Power Klaw, bosspole 370
30 Shoota Boyz w/ 3x Shootaz, Nob w/ Power Klaw, ‘eavy armor, bosspole 240 pts
30 Shoota Boyz w/ 3x Shootaz, Nob w/ Power Klaw, ‘eavy armor, bosspole 240 pts

Brief Synopsis of Game play

Game 1 vs. Black Templars: Massacre +1 battle point
This game was fun and I enjoyed my opponent. This was as close to a “flawless victory” that I got. I garnered 21 points from this round. The main lesson that was reinforced for me was stick to your plan. Since this mission was “Seize Ground”, I decided to focus on securing each of the five objectives and keeping them clear of the enemy presence. I also knew that since I was playing a horde army I would have to play each round as if it were my last.

My opponent was foolhardy enough to run his entire army at me, and I took advantage of this by moving my forces forward. Once my forces were where I wanted them, I shot at him and caused all of his forward troops to move towards my lines. This allowed me to assault him on turn 1.

My ‘ard Boyz managed to turn out casualties against his chaplain and command squad and ended up locked in combat because of the Templar’s fearless in hand to hand rule. Ghazghull, the Nobz, and the truk boyz hit two squads of sword brethren and when the dust cleared a lone Templar stood, which I was able to consolidate into with both units because he poorly choose who lived. He was trying to pull casualties so as to disengage Ghazghull, but 1 model from old Thraka’s unit was able to consolidate into base to base thus dragging the whole unit along.

Turn 2 was where my opponent attempted a weak retaliation and brought in 2 of his three deep striking units. Luckily for me all of his shooting was being made by Star Wars Storm Troopers and I was left fairly unscathed. As we launched into the assault phase it was announced that we had 30 minutes left.

This time the tables turned for my ‘ard Boyz as they were charged by the Emperor’s Champion and friends. The fight was bloody and the ‘ard Boyz lost and were run down. The lone Templar was cut down but he at least took two Orks with him, after which the Truk Boyz ducked behind the hill out of sight, but within 3” of the objective. Ghazghull consolidated towards an objective near the Templar lines.

On my part of turn two Ghazghull and his squad moved to capture an objective. Both of my Shoota mobs moved in and captured 2 more objectives, while the Burna boyz moved up to clear my opponent off the fifth objective. Once the boyz had moved into position they opened up to gun down nearby targets. Between the Lootas, SAG, and two units of Shoota Boyz I managed to thin the EC and his unit down to just the EC and a mook. As I began my assault moves time was called. Oh well maybe next time I will be able to secure all of the objectives instead of all but 1. I was a little annoyed that Snikrot and his Kommandoes didn’t make it out of reserve.

Game 2 vs. Imperial Guard: Tie no extra battle points 597 VP Orks to 587 VP IG

Game 2 got started after lunch. Interesting note during our 1 hour lunch the kids playing in the tournament decided to have an impromptu who brought the best character throw down. It was fun to watch, and in my opinion really in the spirit of the tourney and the game.

Game 2 began with the IG player going first. My opponent was a teenager who was a very excellent opponent. Thankfully the dawn of war rules saved my keester in this turn, but he did get off a lucky shot which threw Ghazghull and his gang out of their truck. However he forgot to bring in his forces, which I also did for a few of my units on my first turn.

When my turn 1 came I brought my Burnaz on but forgot about the Lootaz. GRRR!!! I then moved just about everything toward his lines. I did get a bit luckier than my opponent and managed enough shots to cause two squads to take morale checks, which one squad failed. Not bad for an opening salvo.

When turn 2 hit, the Hellhound, 2 Russes, and storm troopers rolled on along with a flamer special weapons squad being deployed behind my firing line. It was impressive, and it managed to kill the SAG, take out half a Shoota Boyz squad and immobilize the last remaining Trukk.

Then the hurtin’ time came for the poor IG. Once againg Snikrot thought that Ghazghull had the battle handled, and sat on the bench. The Lootas came on and got into a position to assault the Flame throwers that were in my lines. All but one unit moved up in preparation of an assault. Ghazghull declared a Waaagh! and the IG were immediately knee deep in Orks. The Orks had assaulted six units, and only managed to get 2 kill points. I knew that the KP rules were going to anger me greatly. Needless to say, he was now down six squads.

His turn 3 came and well the other Hellhound rolled on, but not his last Russ (whew.) I was able to withstand the fusillade of fire that came towards my orks, but as it became my turn game was called. Curses! Snikrot benched by my dice again!

Game 3 vs. Orks: Minor Loss
This like the last game was an evenly matched brawl against a great opponent. There was so much occurring I could not relate it all. The balance swung on the second half of the second turn where I dusted his fire base off of his objective with Snikrot and contested it, but he captured mine with his Nobz Squad. The pivotal battle was where Ghazghull and his unit rolled snake eyes on the difficult terrain check and they were more than an inch away. Curses! That stopped me cold from earning 5 KPs.

Wrap Up
I tied for fourth, but won on VP so fourth place was mine. The nice thing is that the second place player will be unable to attend the next round, so I will be going to regionals.

The biggest thing that I learned was that speed is an Ork’s friend. I also had “remember the mission rules” lesson pounded into my skull. Hopefully it will stick. I may also see if I can round up a rules runt to help me look up pertinent questions in the book and to deflect all questions away from me that slow down my game play. Hope you enjoyed my ‘ard Boyz wrap up.

Cross Posted at

Tactical Rock
Austin Miniature Minions

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Just got Black Reach!

So, I just got Black Reach at the midnight event for our local game store (which actually wasn't an event but that's neither here nor there).

So the big question is: who wants to trade their Marines for my Orks? :)

Besides that, in a few days, I'll be ready to begin writing about our new terrain project. :) I think it's gonna be awesome...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Oh, you Beast!

Having played my first 5th-ed game I came across one really surprising and irritating rule:
Moving within ruins (page 83): "Only certain troops are capable of clambering to the upper levels of ruins. Accordingly, only infantry, jump infantry, jetbikes, monstrous creatures and walkers may move on the upper levels of a ruin - and only if the model can physically be placed there. Other units may only move on the ground level of the ruin."

I play 'Nids. My favorite units are the Raveners and Homogaunts both of which are beasts as described in the 'Nid codex.

Well, my first game was against Democratus and his Chaos. He had placed all his beginning troops on the second floor of a ruin. It gave the humorous look of "woman on a chair afraid of mice".

Aside from that, I am a little peeved at this rule. I understand not wanting bikes on the upper floor of a ruin, but have GW not heard of "dismounting"? I mean, if the ruin is strong enough to hold a walker can 14 homogaunts be any heavier?

So far other than this little peeve, I like 5th-ed rules so far. Being the casual player the game does go faster and I like that I had a draw even with one of the better players of our group.

Now if Witch Hunters and 'Nids can get an updated Codex all will be well...

Friday, August 22, 2008

AA Represents at Orkpocalypse!

So Battleforge, one of our favorite local game stores, held an Apocalypse event on Thursday night. 3K points per player, 13 players (IIRC), one big table with my Marines on one side and Psyberwolfe's Orks on the other.

So we all lined up on the field, the Holy Imperium of Man versus those most foul and foreign Greenskins!

I managed to put together a Battle Company...

...while Psyberwolfe brought a Green Tide (among other things).

There was planning both strategic and tactical, fighting both ranged and hand to hand...

In the end, the Imperium won, not only because we were hard and stalwart, but also because Dante failed a morale check and had to fall back...

...keeping the Tide from getting close enough to claim an objective!

Nice Waaaagh!, Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thraka. Too bad you @$$ got sacked!!!

And, for the record, it was an excellent game and some very cool players on both sides. I completely look forward to the next one! Game on!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Magic of the Multi-Melta

A commonly fielded unit in my marine army is a multi-melta Devastator unit. I have considered them a fairly effective unit and they have usually performed admirably. They have usually acted in the deterrent role because of their ability punch through armor, so my opponents would typically give them wide berth or present lower armor targets.
This new edition has vindicated my faith in the multi-melta, but it has made this unit a bit of a fire magnet. In my first 5th edition game Bulwark, of Bell of Lost Souls fame, made a b-line towards this unit and allowed my Devastators a single turn of firing. By turn two he had managed to tie them up in close combat and dispatched them in subsequent rounds.
The lesson learned from this game is that Devastator multi-meltas are a liability because they tend to draw unnecessary attention and in one turn a large portion of anti tank firepower can be removed. This event caused me to wonder what role, if any, would the multi-melta play in future game of 5th edition. Then it occurred to me that my error was in fielding them as Devastators. I decided that more wasn’t better with these because one usually accomplished the job.
My new paradigm is multi-meltas are best in tactical squads, and since I play Dark Angels, they will come into their own with combat squads. They will excel in Combat Squads because they will be able to use the run rule behind the cover of my armored fighting vehicles (AFVs.) Once they have moved up they will have a decent command of the field and will be able to deliver effective anti tank firepower. The new run rule also increases their flexibility by allowing them a chance to take up a decent field position.
What excites me most about multi-meltas is their armor penetration of 1, and what that does in this new edition. Admittedly, they are a poor man’s lascannon, but there aren’t many AV 14 targets in the game. This is what will make these weapons feared and will cause many players to re-examine their tactics. I am fairly confident that here in the near future this weapon will become as common as the lascannon.

Friday, July 25, 2008

The Hills Are Alive With The Sound Of Gunfire…

So, you got the new 5th Edition Manual and you get out on the battlefield. You’re doing alright except for one thing: you have no suitable hills now. In 4th, things were a little more abstract. If you and your opponent agreed that a hill was a hill, it probably blocked line of sight. Now, with the true line of sight rules in 5th, you’ve got nothing to hide a squad behind, much less a tank. Well, never fear! A lot of people are going to be building real hills so I think it’s time for me to show you how!

For our hill building, you are going to need the following tools:

Hot wire foam cutter ($6-15 from a hobby store)
Batteries (the foam cutter will suck them up a bit)
A marker or highlighter

You will also need the following supplies:

Glue (Good old school white glue is fine)
¾” Pink insulation foam board ($9 for a 4’x 8’ sheet)

The foam board is where it all begins. I use ¾” pink foam board (which actually, isn’t foam. It’s fiberglass). Some people use blue foam because it’s thicker, but I think pink foam has more uses for crafting so it’s better in my opinion to have more pink foam that you will use than to have two separate types of foam for different things. Of course, if you’re more serious than I am, that may work for you. On the other hand, if you’re more serious than I am, you probably already have hills! If you use the pink foam, I recommend you prepare it before use. You’ll notice that there’s a clear thin plastic sheet on each side of the foam. Peel it off. You’ll smell a chemical scent from the newly exposed foam. That’s why you’ll want to put it into a well ventilated area for a while to dry out. As far as I know, it’s not dangerous but I don’t want to take that chance with any of our loyal readers. Once it’s dried out (and you don’t smell it [trust me, you’ll know what I mean]), we can begin.

Cut the foam into smaller sheets. Then glue several sheets together.

Scale is something to think about. Most everything states that 3” up is equivalent to going up a level/upstairs/whatever. That would mean four sheets would be one level up. However, I use 3 as a level. It’s a bit of an aesthetic thing. I think the slightly smaller hill looks better and the disparity doesn’t become obvious unless you have 4 or five levels up or down. And with true line of sight, the disparity actually has no actual meaning any longer. Go a little taller if you want, I’ll stay a little shorter. As Bob Ross might have said, it’s your hill and you can make it as tall or as small as you want it.

I use toothpicks to provide stability and keep the sheets from slipping. Put them in at multiple angles but not far enough to poke out the other sides and keep them more towards the center if you can. Use cutters of something to cut off any ends that might still be sticking out. You may also want to put some glue into the toothpick holes if you can. Once it’s glued, let if sit for a while and dry. An hour or two should suffice, but you know your conditions a little better than I do.

When you’re ready, you want to take your glued stacks outside or into a well ventilated area (trust me, you want to do this outside). Take your marker and draw a ring around the area you want to be the top of your hill. A rough representation will do, but you want to make sure that it is away from the edges.

Take the hot knife and start cutting around the ring. You’re probably not going to want to do this straight on. You want to do it more at an angle which is why you don’t want the ring you draw to be too close to the edges. That way the hills you make will slope. Of course, you’re not entirely bound to that. Cutting it straight creates cliffs and dropoffs. You might want to vary up the angle you’re cutting at to create more interesting looking hills, sloping from one direction but sheer cliff on another side. Another thing you’ll notice is that as you cut, it’ll sometimes seem to drag and cut a little raggedly. That’s fine. In fact, I think it’s preferred. That way, the sloping will look a little more like the rough sides of many hills. Remember, the cutting will release fumes, but this isn’t Styrofoam, it’s fiberglass. As a result, it won’t be anywhere near as bad but fumes will still occur. Also don’t think you have to cut this all in one continuously perfect piece. Cut off a piece and then cut off some more. If you don’t like the way something is looking, cut until you like it. Pull out a utility knife or an exacto and gouge it up further it you want. Only you know what you want it to look like. Once you’re done, you may want to take some fine sandpaper around the edges to knock off any look strands of fiberglass. I personally just rub my finger around the edge to clean it up. If you do this, remember that fiberglass can pierce your skin or get on you and be really uncomfortable (if you’ve ever cut fiberglass duct, you know what I mean) so be careful.

You should end up with something that looks kinda like this:

It’s a hill! Note you can easily put a squad on top of it.

Notice how it looks from a sergeant's eyeview...

Too bad he can't see the Land Raider supporting them. What Land Raider?

THAT Land Raider.

If you make it big enough in area, you can place smaller hills on top of it to make bigger hills and still have places to stand buildings or vehicles.

If you have something with a cliff side, you can not only represent hard climbs, but you can also combine with buildings to give a mountain village kind of look. This is the best argument for your building and hills to be at a uniform level.

But who wants a pink hill? That’s why you get your favorite color of craft paint for such things (I use golden brown Delta Ceramcoat) and paint the muther some color other than pink as you probably noticed I did with the second hill. You’ll probably want to use more than one coat because the bright pink will show through a thin coat. Or, if you want, you can spray paint it! It’s not foam! It’s fiberglass! The spray paint won’t melt the hill!

Flock or don’t flock. Base or don’t base. It’s up to you. All that matters is that you have a hill that has a chance of actually hiding units. Now make some more!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Tyrus Campaign Finished

After many months of manuver and battle, the Tyrus campaign has drawn to a close.

Here are the victory points earned by each force as of the end of the 11th week:

Chaos: 3200
Grey Knights: 3100
Necrons: 1400
Astramalleus: 900
Sisters of Battle: 800
Anger Sharks: 800

As can be seen, the top slot was hotly contested and only narrowly won.

Having captured the massive artifact at the center of the Tyus system, Typhus is going to attempt to create a new warp storm so he can claim a kingdom for his own.

It has been suggested that a final Apocalypse battle be fought to determine if this scheme can come to fruition. We await input from all the players to see if this will happen.

All in all, it was a noble experiment in map-based campaign play. For a first attempt at creating a dynamic system where all players had maximum choice I think it went rather well. Should we try again, there are several changes I think could be made.

Hopefully everyone had as much fun with this as I did. I really enjoyed not knowing who I would fight or where until battle was upon me. I also had much fun with the meta-gaming and scheming - as many will attest.

The big question now is....what is next for our intrepid League?