Thursday, 28 May 2009

Progress Report

Just a few pics of what I've done tonight...


Monday, 25 May 2009

Selection Dilemma...

ok, so I'm building three shadowsords (well, three variants anyway)

Currently looking at Shadowsword, Stormlord and Banehammer.

And it comes to the sponson options. I have a spare set of sponsons and side plates from my Ork Baneblade (I haven't built it yet but I'm going for an understandably ramshackle look so those bits will most likely be surplus) so have some flexibility when it comes to extra armour, sponsons, or extra sponsons. Which leaves me wondeing what to do for each.

My first thought for extra armour would be the Stormlord. It's an assault tank when all is said and done, so chances are it wants to move forward, which opens it up to more side shots. The downside of this is that with the massive amount of str D weaponry thrown around in apoc, it doesn't really matter about upgrading my side armour from 13 to 14, I could drop it to 10, it's just as easy to get a penetrating hit when you're firing Str D. In which case, surely it's better to have MORE sponsons on (that way, if I'm lucky and he doesn't roll to lose structure points, any weapon destroyed results won't swiftly roll over to becoming drive damaged. A static assault tank isn't very impressive. At least with sponsons I have an extra 4 lives before my chance of immobilisation doubles. In fact the tank is more likely to be dead before immobilised!) If I could take heavy bolter sponsons on the Stormlord I would, I'd take 4. But I can only take heavy flamer. And the chance of getting in range to do anything with it is pretty slim. Even slimmer to get the chance to use 4 of the bastards, if the enemy is that close I'm gonna be unloading troops and THEN where do I flame?

The Shadowsword I'd like to be able to use as The Iron Saint from time to time, so that loadout is already dictated to me.

Which leaves the Banehammer. This has a 60" range Tremor cannon, and will be doing it's best to slow the enemy down and keep them away. Therefore I am more likely to be sitting it back, and less likely to need improved side armour. In this situation, the extra sponsons could prove handy.

Which just leaves us back with my old pal the Stormlord. Extra sponsons seems impractical given I can only have flamers, so really the choice is between the side armour 14, or the extra 4 guns for the enemy to shoot off. And yes the lascannons will at least give the Stormlord a smidgen of anti tank capability. Right now I'm leaning towards a single set of sponsons on Stormlord and Shadowsword, with a dual set on the Banehammer. What do you think?

Works in Progress

So have done a little painting at work this weekend. Basically did a couple of things that were only part assembled until I could get interiors and other hard to reach places at least partly done. Now they've been mostly assembled. Here are some shots of what I have been up to the last few days.

This looks like the start of a MEGA battle Wagon conversion :oP


And here's a normal one


The door makes the gap a bit narrower... I hope I can still get that gunner in position when I'm finished :oS


Man at back, pointing and presumably yelling "GET TO THE CHOPPER, cough, ahem, VALKYRIE!!!"

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

What's this Royal Mail has brought me?


Hmmm... I wonder what this could be?


Oooh, isn't THAT nice!


Mwha ha ha ha ha ha ha haaah! My God I LOVE ebay! Ironically my first plan is to build these for the apoc scenario, so chances are the first game they get they'll be in the hands of someone else. Oh well, these things are set to try us :oP

Saturday, 16 May 2009

Apoc Scenario

Somewhat inspired by the white dwarf scenario, I've been tweaking this for a potential upcoming event. There are also some random events, but as referee I'll be the only one aware of those for the time being. Still a work in progress, but I thought I'd publish it to try to address your fears (Ken!)


Outline

A sort of semi apoc game using rules from apoc and from basic 40k. No super heavies will be allowed in force selection, instead there will be a stock of super heavies on the table waiting for people to claim them. This will be a multi team event, a sort of doubles game if you will, with Ginge providing the super heavies, being the ref, and controlling any random events that spring up to keep the participants on their toes.

Setup

Setup will take place similar to a normal 40k Dawn of War scenario, with 2 troops and an HQ allowed up to 12” on to the table from their respective table corner. This will be per player, hopefully we will have 8 players. The game board will be set up by the referee, a 6’ x 8’ board with several super heavies in the centre of the table, facing out.

Force Selection

Each team will consist of two players. The team must make sense. Thus Imperial cannot work with Chaos, or Orks or whatever. Ideally the teams will be of the one side, but if we’re stuck for basic sides the referee will appoint teams to the best of his ability. (Perhaps Eldar and Tau would choose to work together for the survival of the craftworld/greater good. Perhaps Orks and a Khornate warband realise quite how much they have in common etc)

Each team will consist of 5000 points. This can be split between the two players however they see fit, though it is recommended to keep it as fair as possible.

No superheavies or Gargantuan creatures will be allowed.

Force selection follows apoc rules. There is no minimum troops allowance (though bear in mind the dawn of war restrictions already mentioned) players can select whatever they wish.

Legendary Formations are allowed, and can use any strategic assets which affect JUST that formation. Other supporting assets (such as those added to the players asset pool) will not count. Each player will receive one asset from a restricted list. (The armies won’t have had time to prepare the battlefield for starters) The referees decision is final.

The same special character cannot fight alongside his “twin” brother. Hopefully all similar armies will be working together anyway, so it should be easy enough for two ork players to decide which of them has Ghazzkull and which one has Wazzdakka.

Tyranids and Daemons will not be involved in this game. The daemons have no need to salvage lost tech, and the Nids would just want to eat them…

Deployment


Armies will deploy similarly to Dawn of War as already mentioned. They will be allowed to deploy anywhere within 12” of their table edge, which will extend 24” from their team corner in each direction. Any forces not left in reserve arrive on turn 1, reserves arrive using apoc reserve rules.

Capturing a Super Heavy

Any unit that is within assault range of a super heavy can assault it in it’s turn. Declare before assaulting whether you are trying to capture it or destroy it. If it has already been captured there is no option to capture. The tank can only be claimed once. If they have any surviving models in base contact by the start of their next turn, the tank is claimed. Any surviving models are then removed from the table (assumed to be in the tank – they will be destroyed with the tank so are effectively removed from the game) While claiming a unit benefits from the tank blocking many avenues of LOS. The tank grants a 3+ cover save to the unit. If assaulted the unit will fight as normal, and if they repulse the enemy before the start of their next turn they can claim the tank. Otherwise they will continue to fight and wait for the next opportunity.

A second unit can attempt to capture the same tank if they can reach the tank but not the unit – they have the same option of trying to attack or capture. The trouble is they would then be hoping someone else finished off the enemy – otherwise they’ll just drive off in their own turn. Perhaps it would be better to attempt to damage the tank before it falls into enemy hands.

Note – only infantry can capture a tank. Bikes and Jump Troops are far too bulky to capture a tank. Models in Terminator Armour are similarly disadvantaged. Any questions on what could feasibly crew a baneblade, the referees decision is final.

Once the tank is captured a piece of paper will be revealed explaining the status of the tank – they’ve been left on a battlefield, we can’t guarantee these will all be in perfect working order! Only the referee will know what the papers entail (and he will have placed most of them randomly so it should surprise him to a certain degree too!)

Winning the Game

The game will run for a set number of turns (determined by the time factor which will be judged after the first couple of turns) an equal number of turns per team. Each team will have one objective in their deployment zone. Each surviving super heavy will count as an additional objective to the player that controls it. Normal apoc rules apply for scoring units and objectives.

Monday, 11 May 2009

Damn those Kill Points

Well having now had the real acid test and played a guard game of annihalation (back to work next week, had three games since the new codex came out, one of each... that's quite lucky) and as I lined up my 25 kill points and looked at the 11 facing me, I felt the familiar guard routine of Annihalation = Lose was set to continue. It still feels like it is, but at least what I had on the table performed better, and it was a much closer game overall, and thus more fun. I still would have had to wipe the enemy out to win, (and it was one of those annoying results where you have majority of the forces left but kil points are what count) but at least he wasn't so far ahead that it wasn't close, the game finishing on turn 6 at 12-8. We then played another turn to see if I could have pulled it back. Yarrick got back up, I finished off his thousand sons, but the chimeras taking shots at his rhino and dread failed. His dread then pegged another chimera, giving us a game turn 7 score of 12-9 to Rich.

Adding up under the old victory points rules, I had 747 left to Richs 180. Thus it was particularly annoying to lose. But his dread had come barrelling down the flank (with another dread in tow) and while I'd got one the other had rather uncoperatively always left it's front armour on show. My right flank had gone far better, limiting the defiler to a single chimera before killing it. Unfortunately this left me trying to get the surviving meltaguns from one side of the field to the other, and with a combat raging in the middle of the field (plus the bulk of the terrain being within my own lines) I couldn't get the men across. They ended up joining in with the massacre of the thousand sons.

Yarrick proved far easier to kill, but as tenacious as his reputation suggests. He was dragged down by lesser deamons, but he regained consciousness as they moved on to other targets. He was then struck down by a chaos sorcerer, only to rise to his feet once more. He then charged the marines again, taking a few of them with him this time before being dragged down. But he got to his feet once again, ready to charge the survivng marines once more, before combined fire from 3 squads, 3 chimeras, and a hellhound denied him his target.

Straken proved an asset again, his gung ho attitude inspiring his men to take the lesser daemons down over several rounds of combat. Also, an interesting case cropped up. Straken replaces the company commander. He is part of the command squad. Nowhere on either the company commander entry, or the Straken entry, does it say he is an independent character. He is part of the squad. This has two benefits. The first is stopping each guard command section costing 2 kill points for 5 guardsmen. The other interesting one that cropped up tonight - as he isn't an independant character he can't be targetted in combat. They must simply engage the squad and let the wounds fall where they may. This kept him in the fight a round longer, helping the guard to overcome the daemonic presence in the end.

Overall this army list was lacking in long range anti tank. Against an army that wanted to sit back and shoot (and had armour 13 or better) i'd have trouble closing to meltagun range. On the flip side, against an opponent not expecting to face 12 armour 12 vehicles, it was slow goign trying to crack open the tanks and let the soft juicy guardsmen fall out. I think this is what kept Richs score relatively low. I will have to see how an infantry heavy army and a balanced army face up to the annihalation challenge at some point. But I'll still take an objective based game any day of the week.

Mount Up!

Well after the success of last weeks infantry horde, it's a possibility they will be waiting for me to turn up and try the same army again this week... don't they know me at all?!?

Tonight Straken will be leading the force again (I had originally intended to leave Straken and the Orders system at home today, but I wanted a mechanised force and once I realised penal legion squads couldn't have chimeras my idea for a penal battallian was put on hold...) this time he will have a chimera. As will the ogryns, accompanied by Yarrick. As will the 2 platoon commands and their 3 squads each (all squads have a meltagun to give me something for the tougher stuff)

So all in all 10 chimeras. Plus a couple of hellhounds for shits and giggles. In fact, the only person on foot is that man Marbo again, who went behind enemy lines weeks ago, and while we get the occassional report of an entire squad being wiped out without firing a shot, enemy prison camps being bust open, and some idiot running round with a bandanna and a bow and arrow, thus far high command have been unable to take any of these ridiculous rumours seriously...

Friday, 8 May 2009

Valkyrie Modelling

I have started to assemble my first valkyrie. I have previously mentioned great plans for squads of these things, this is a basic one for now. I am planning to position the Catachan tank rider in the open side door though.



I have assembled several chunks of the model. I am going to need to paint the interior before I continue construction. I shall also paint the sliding doors (the internal side at least) so that they are ready to be held in position when I continue assembling the model. My vague plan is to put some masking tape on the inside to prevent my painted interior from catching spray paint when I base coat the exterior. These can be removed once the spray can is safely packed away.



I have one door gunner at his heavy bolter, while the other is folded away to allow the Catachan to sit at the doorway. I have used some spare bits from a Cadian heavy weapon sprue to turn the other gunner into an additional crewman who will be poised at the rear ramp (no doubt encouraging any storm troopers to "GO! GO! GO!" The Catachan will stop one of the doors from being closed, so he will have to be one of the last things I add to the model.



Going to go with the colour scheme that has become the predominant one for tanks in my army, and am debating the jaws paint scheme near the nose that looks quite cool. Get a feeling that will be a popular one though :oS

Pictures will be posted to this entry as soon as I find the lead that connects my mobile to my PC :oP

Monday, 4 May 2009

Imperial Triumph

The imperium triumphed against the blue invader tonight, winning an objective based mission 2-1 (with the objective in the middle of the battlefield, in the open, surrounded by nothing but the remnants of a charnel house)

Using the army list displayed in guardsman guardsman guardsman, I set up a bastion of fire in a building near one of the objectives. I'd cunningly placed two of the objectives at the top of buildings, while Rich went for ground floor targets. When I got to choose deployment zone, I chose the best defendable of his targets. Rich was astounded by how many men I was putting out, and was quite relieved when I revelaed there were no tanks joining them today.

I had sent Marbo in to take up position several days before, and a penal legion of hardened fighters had advanced around to the flank of the army. The other penal legion, armed with assault lasguns, took up position in the building with the highest objective, and scout moved into a better position. We must assume they were assault lasguns, there was no way to be sure as they didn't fire a shot all game. The squad in fact over the course of the game hunkered down early on, suffered too mcuh and legged it almost to the byeline, before being ordered back into the fray by one of the command squads and making thier way steadily back to their objective. By the end of turn 6, with some good run moves, they had reclaimed the top of the building where they started. I iamagine they were somewhat breathless.

The first turn went quite badly as Rich siezed the initiative. My men were clustered at the starting blocks ready to diffuse towards the enemy, meaning they were tightly packed for his ordnance. Particularly his commander, who had a devastating ordnance barrage weapon that ignored cover saves. In the first turn alone I must have lost 40 guardsmen. Luckily in the imperial guard you soon learn life is cheap, and the squads held firm. They then advanced as planned, with Richs annoying stealth suits and commander popping out, shooting to devastating effect, then popping back into cover again.

It was in turn three that the game truly turned. My outflanking penal legion arrived and advanced towards one of the elusive stealth teams. More importantly, Richs commander, who had hopped out of cover so he could correct his ordnance barrage by his BS, had lingered too long. Rich having forgotten to withdraw him, several giardsmen squads advanced with murderous revenge in mind. Sadly for them all they got was showered with viscera as Straken had spotted his opposite numbers error, and brought it to the attention of one of his lascannon teams. Their prize may have been taken, but with the devastating weapon now silenced the guard advanced towards the central objective in greater confidence. Sadly the penal legion (with furious charge) were relying on me for their dice rolls... they managed to inflict one casualty, and lost 1 in return. Over the course of the next couple of rounds of combat they were dragged down, but at least they kept the stealth suits away from attacking my flank for a couple of turns.

The course of the game was generally two entrenched forces in buildings firing across the open space trying in vain to dislodge each other. The brave imperial forces had the advantage of being sat on an additional objective deep in their deployment zone. While every time they advanced into the central objective the squads were cut down, this was at least drawing the bulk of the Tau fire, leaving the heavy weapon teams free to exact a punishing revenge of their own. The Hammerhead that shot to such great effect on the first turn was immobilised and stunned in return, then every single turn it was stunned once more, until turn 5 when the gun was eventually dislodged after the sheer amount of hits it had taken. At the end of the game, the guard had lost a tremendous amount of men, but still had 6 out of 7 heavy weapon teams firing (5 to full effect) Not knowing if there would be an additional turn or not, Straken attacked and wiped out one of the stealth teams that had proved so elusive until the pressing time matter forced them to be more bold. The other team, under similar pressures, decided to attack the other command section. They hadn't realised the commander was wielding a power fist, and suffered for their mistake.

Marbo once again appeared at a brilliant time. A battlesuit team had deep striked in, done some damage, then withdrawn from the line of fire. Little did they realise they had withdrawn right next to Marbo, whose demo charge took out two of them. Sadly the survivor gunned him down before moving on to get locked in combat against 3 guardsmen for about 3 turns. This wasn't the only display of fighting ineptitude, as a squad and command section of guardsmen were locked in combat by a solitary flying dinner plate for about 5 rounds of combat. It's a good thing Straken was too busy beating down the enemies of the imperium to see htis, otherwise the troopers involved would no doubt be in serious trouble.

At the end of turn 6 the dust settled to reveal the tau clinging tenaciously to one objective, a guard squad and a penal legion holding another, and the heavy weapon teams still ocnfidently holding their bastion of fire around an objective. The central objective was in a bloodsoaked mess, with only Straken and his command anywhere within sight of the objective. They don't count as scoring anyway.

On a more interesting note, the orders system was yet again dominated by the heavy weapon squads. The 70 points I spent on vox links yielded a single re-roll. On the ability to run a bit further. I think in any game where I will have heavy weapon squads, vox links are likely to be a needless expense. If I go for an army that is more infantry based and mobile, with less reliance on static heavy weapon squads, then it may be worth it. The downside of this then being that more mobile forces are less likely to stay within range of their commanders orders. Personally, in most of my army lists I see vox links as being a thing of the past. Incidentally, the only truly disasterous roll, of double 6, happened once. Typically, it was on a heavy squad so couldn't be rerolled.

Anyway, back to that valkyrie...

Friday, 1 May 2009

Guardsman, guardsman, guardsman...

Monday I am playing a game, but do not yet know who my opponent will be. Chris has promised Stu a game of fantasy if he gets his Warriors of Chaos ready in time, if he doesn't Rich will bring High Elves to face him. Whoever doesn't play Stu is playing me at 40K. Which means I could face Tau, Tau, Chaos, Chaos, or marines. In the chaos sense there are the options of a Tzeentch force, a Nurgle army, or if I play Rich a nurgle plus Lash Prince and probably Tzeentch as well just for shits and giggles. If marines it's Raven Guard, often a drop pod marine army. Led by Vulkan Hestan and Tygerius (obviously they've been transferred from the Salamanders and Ultramarines respectively... guess they got the Dawn of War bug.)

Anyway, I decided to draw up my army now. As far as I know none of them read this blog, so it should be a surprise. I decided to go for what the imperial guard is all about. The common soldier. And lot's of them.

So, here's a basic run down of my army.

HQ: Command Squad, led by Straken again (I like the guy what can I say) set up to assault any gribblies that get in my lines as best they can. Officer of the fleet, and a couple bits to improve their cover save and give them feel no pain (in case someone decides quite wisely that they should shoot the commander first.)

HQ: Another Command Squad, equipped with power fist and the same upgrades to try to minimise the chance of them getting pasted first. Again an officer of the fleet (knowing my potential opponents make use of the dreaded drop pod marine army and annoying deep strike straight into assault lesser daemons I figured it was a wise investment. If I face Tau I expect it'll be an unwise point sink, and I wouldn't put two in a balanced army. But in this case it's worth it.

E: Sly Marbo. Plenty of fun and cheap, and again it's a character I've missed from the old Catachan codex.

T: Infantry Platoon 1. Command with vox. 5 infantry squads with vox and meltagun. 2 mortar heavy weapon squads, 1 lascannon heavy weapon squad.

T: Infantry platoon 2. Command with vox. 5 infantry squads with vox and meltagun. 1 lascannon heavy weapon squad, 3 missile launcher heavy weapon squads.

T: Penal Legion Squad

T: Penal Legion Sqaud

I've included the penal legions as they proved quite useful last time, and I want to see how they perform with more chance to get a variety of results. This is a test case. I went with plenty of heavy weapons, and I'll build a bastian around the command squads so I can get the best effect from the orders system. Another thing I noticed. It specifically states in the codex, in the infantry platoon heading "Each Infantry Platoon counts as a single Troops choice on the force organisation chart when deploying, and is rolled for collectively when rolling for reserves." I may have to ask in GW what they think that means in the Dawn of War scenario, it would be interesting to put down over 100 troops as my starting force.

The final thing up for evaluation will be the value of voxes. A double 6 that renders the orders phase over is a ngihtmare to be avoided at all costs, and that is where the vox comes in. But thus far I have noticed that most of my orders have been to heavy weapon squads, which can't have vox. In the last game the only other squad I ordered was a penal legion, and they can't have vox either. I think I'll keep a track in my next game how many times I actually get a re-roll. This army has spent 70 points on voxes. If I only get a couple of rerolls in the game, that 70 points may be better spent on yet another squad of infantry. Not entirely necessary in THIS list perhaps... but an interesting test of whether voxes will be mch use to me in future.

Anyway, a review of this will come on Monday evening. As for the weekend, payday has arrived so I shall be heading to the workshop. I intend to get a Catachan command squad, and the first of many Valkyries. I also want to pick up a box of catachan troops to utilise more of the command squad sprue, and may pick up a couple more sentinal models, as they just made my favourite model even cooler. Gotta love payday :oD