Friday, 31 December 2010

A year in Statistics...

So this year I kept a tally of the games of 40k and fantasy I played. I wasn't particularly planning to do anything with it, it was out of idle curiosity. As we've come to the years end, I decided just to sort through and tot up some totals for the interest of myself and some friends. It's looking at it like this that makes the whole rigmarole worthwhile throughout the year! :oP

So, basics. I played 75 games of 40k or fantasy last year. Some were competitive, most were friendly. Some were apocalyptic, and some mere combat patrols. Most were with my own army, but I occassionally borrowed someone elses, and in an interesting fun tourney came up with a dreamteam comprising Orks, Guard and Nids! It's been an interesting year I'll give it that!

Of those 75, I've won 41, drawn 12 and lost 22. After so many years of being the poor guy in the corner who, bless him, brought GUARD of all things week in week out, and duly got his backside kicked - well, suffice to say this win record is unprecedented for me, and I am somewhat proud of it! I even managed a 16 game undefeated streak, and an 11 game winning streak!

Breaking it down into 40k and fantasy, I find where I have more talent/luck/bribe money* (delete as applicable) I played only 19 games of fantasy, yet just over half of them (10) were losses, along with 4 draws and a mere 5 wins. This of course did leave the 40k stats looking all the better. Of 56 games, I had 36 wins, 8 draws, and 12 losses. And yes, that is where the 16 game undefeated streak came from by the looks of it!

Looking deeper and comparing my two main armies of Guard and Orks, I discovered a shocking and indeed troubling fact - I got in more games with my orks than guard this year! However, given at the start of the year the Orks were being built up as part of a Tale of Four Gamers and were then part of a campaign and taken to a tournament, I suppose I can forgive them. This year I have already planned to do Guard for tale of four gamers, ready in time for a tournament, so they should get some more love. This decision was made before this discovery was made I will say now though! :oP

I did have more success with the Orks, winning 19 of 28, whilst suffering only 5 losses and 4 draws. They established an undefeated streak of 17 games! The guard managed to win 13 of 23, drawing 4 and losing 6. They didn't get up much of a streak though, only managing to remain undefeated for 6 games at most!

Oh, and in case you're wondering why I didn't mention the undefeated streak for fantasy, it's cos it's a measly three... which matched my losing streak for fantasy! So not a good year for the swords and shields!

And finally on to personal friends. Chris went from being my nemesis last year (whose plague marines I just could not touch, in every sense of the word) to being a bit of a whipping boy this year as he switched to guard. My knowledge of that army allowed me to pick him apart on 6 out of 7 occassions, with him clinging to some pride with a solitary victory to deny me inflicting pool-hall rules punishment on him. Ken and I also played 7 games, and he seems to have slipped from being a permanent annoyance into being someone more manageable, with 5 wins out of 7 (1 loss and 1 draw accounting for the other results.) I've played far less games against Nige than I realised this year, only facing him 4 times. I scored 2 victories a loss and a draw there. Have to get more games in against him next year. And then there's Rich. He complains that he has bad luck against me, that I always cause him problems... well the statistics tell the lie of that! Of 14 games I won a mere 3! And no, we aren't well matched opponents who regularly draw - there were no draws. He beat me 11 times out of 14! And some of them were rather irritating ones, such as the recent Tau that managed to pass 4 armour saves to hold my squad in combat away from the objective, gifting Rich the game. It's not like I can look for ways to raise my game against him, he just seems to be my nemesis - whether it's my Stompa refusing to turn up and face him, or a man who can survive getting run over by a deff rolla 5 times, or genestealers that break from Ld10, run through dangerous terrain and lose enough of their numbers not to rally... my point is something uncanny always seems to happen in his games against me to bely the odds. I don't see that ending any time soon!

Anyway, this post is a little dry, so will hopefully replace it with something better soon. But it may be of interest to the people mentioned, so I'll post it anyway :oP

Hope your 2010 was as good as mine, hope your 2011 looks better than mine does :oP

Sunday, 26 December 2010

How much is too much?

I've just added up my guard army for a mega apocalypse battle. Now normally against my usually opponents I'll have about 5k to play with and I'll carefully pick and choose what I want to take. This time I have been invited to play down the local workshop, and they said they were trying to set a record for how big a game they can play. I said I might pop down with my baneblades, to which the staff member inquired "Plural?" to which I gently reply "eight"

His eyes sort of boggled, a feat I've only ever seen in rats before.

"P-p-p-please come"

So having totted up every thing i have (with the exception of a few unbuilt bits and plenty of special weapon options - I have more special options than I can use so I can use the same basic troopers but vary the squad loadout with ease) I've come to about 17,000 points. This is such a total that I am actually assembling a team of wargamers to assist me with this army, to take control of some of the force to speed up gameplay. These guys either haven't got 40k armies of their own anymore or are down visiting family in the area and have not brought it with them. Or just don't want to pack up all their models for the trip, who knows.

Now most of these forces are old models that I'm not particularly fond of anymore (paint scheme wise) and will only bring out to bolster forces where necessary. I do plan to do some updated units so I can play my Catachans to my current painting standard, but that is a work in progress. I also want to build a 3k or so Aircav army for those Catachans (of which I have about 1k of the flyers so far, included in the above total) I am also about to start a special themed guard army for an October tournament as part of a tale of four gamers style campaign. So within the next couple of years I "hope" to have somewhere in the region of 22,000 points. And given a few thousand of that will be stuff that wasn't available in the last guard codex, who knows what I may add the next time they release the codex and bring out a new toy as awesome as the valkyrie/vendetta. And heavy forbid what is coming for the imperials in this so called "summer of flyers."

But seriously, how much is too much? I like nothing better than to see this mass force forging it's way across the battlefield, though I think this will be the first time I've seen this since my very first game of apocalypse (my baneblade collection was much smaller back then) I do have to admit, whilst I rarely get to see the force in full, the ability to chop and change my army as I see fit is very enjoyable - my opponents never know if I'm going to bring an armoured company or foot guard, even in apocalypse! This has earned me a reputation as the most unpredictable guard player anyone has ever met, to the extent that one of my friends once said playing a game like me was stressful for anybody, as a hive tyrant could march towards me, and I will charge it, and the hive tyrant will die at the sheer shock of the situation! This reputation pleases me, as there are far worse reputations for gamers to develop :oP

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Tis the season and all that...

I'm more of a bah humbug person myself, but thought I'd share this regardless.

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

It's that time again... time for a tale!

Yes, I've decided to run another Tale of X Gamers campaign for my friends and I. I've done Tale of Four Gamers before, but as yet I haven't got an exact number and it exceeds 4 in any case, so for now it's just X gamers :oP

My planned rules for it are written below. This is a collection of the various posts made throughout last years campaign, with updated dates and clarifications.

Even better, I'm planning to use this to get my Escalation 11 army ready and painted.

Anyway, the rules are below.

Tale of X Gamers

Starts Monday January 31st.
Phase 1 lasts till last Monday of March
Phase 2 lasts till last Monday of May
Phase 3 lasts till last Monday of July
Phase 4 lasts till last Monday of September
Phase 5 will last an as yet undetermined time...

Phase 1 - 500 points. 5 points for on time, 3 for late (painted by first Monday of April) , 0 for unpainted. Bonus 1 point available for getting a combat patrol game in. (not necessarily a ToFG competitor, anyone will do. Get a couple of pics if possible.)

Phase 2 - 500 points. 5 points for on time, 3 for late (painted by first Monday of June), 0 for unpainted. Bonus 3 points available for getting a test game against someone (not necessarily a ToFG competitor, anyone will do. Get a couple of pics if possible.)

Phase 3 - 500 points. 5 points for on time, 3 for late (painted by first Monday of August), 0 for unpainted. Also, will play a mini-league with each competitor playing each other competitor. League rankings will determine bonus points. This will take place early August (date TBD) We will look to book the club for a Sunday to get the games in.

Phase 4 - 500 points. 5 points for on time, 3 points for late (painted by first Monday of October), 0 for unpainted. Bonus 2 points for modelling an objective marker. Further bonus 1 point for a further objective marker.

Phase 5 - As much extra as you wish for Apoc. Legendary Units, Super Heavies, whatever you like. Deadline is the day of the apoc game, probably late October or early November (date TBD). There will be no points available for painting, but simply put if it isn't painted you can't use it. Any units dropped from earlier 500 point blocks can be put back in here. All forces will join our standing 2000 point armies. The sides will be determined by the challenge organiser along the best lines he sees fit. Hopefully we’ll have some clear “goodies” and “baddies” that can team up, neutrals being assigned as needed... however if there are no clear easy sides to draw we will find another method, at random if necessary. Any difference in points will be covered by additional strategic assets for the poorer party. Scoring for this month will be 5 points for each person on the winning team. There will be an additional 5 points for the "Champion" of each team. This will be decided by completing a secret personal objective (so secret even their team mates aren't allowed to know!)

Additional Rules and Clarifications

The 500 points is the target. Give or take a few points that can be made up or dropped with wargear this is fine. Of course, in your test games you must have a legal army and the correct army value so bear that in mind when planning your forces. Your 1500 point army for the mini tournament will be made up of what you have painted thus far.

If anyone chooses to paint extra throughout the challenge that is their prerogative. However you can’t hold it off against next month. If you present 650 points in phase 1 you still have to present 500 in phase 2. The advantages for doing extra are more tactical flexibility when planning for the phase 3 tournament and more forces ready for the final apocalypse game.

Imperial armour books are acceptable sources for miniatures, unit entries and army lists. Anything found within those pages shall be allowed to be entered as part of the contest and used in games therein (though obviously apoc only formations can’t be used till the apoc game) The person wishing to do this however MUST possess (or have access to) the Imperial Armour books required.

If anyone wishes to use this as an exercise to add more models to an army that already has the core forces painted then this can be arranged, do ask for more details if this is relevant to you. I have a working solution in mind but I’m an idealist, I won’t go into it unless I have to :oP

When it comes to games, weapons on models and anything that would normally be represented needs to be. Wargear that doesn't need to be represented can be varied.

If you go to the effort of making your weapons alterable, through magnets or whatever, you can make use of this flexibility. The conversion work and painting the extra guns is the price you pay. Note though that in the mini tournament you must stick to one weapon loadout throughout.

Finally, while wargear can be changed, when it comes to the mini tournament we will each submit a list. That is what we play to for ALL games.

Apocalyptic Finale

To finish our Tale of X Gamers we're having an apocalyptic showdown, and I thought I'd give fair warning of the rules we are using for this one.

For starters, all models MUST be painted. It is a painting challenge we've just finished after all. It doesn't matter when you painted them, or whether you're missing something you should have finished earlier, if it's painted you can use it, if it isn't then it doesn't exist as far as we're concerned.

Second, scoring. Imperial Armour apocalypse rules will be used here. I will reproduce them below...

"The following model types are NOT able to claim objectives:

Independant Characters
Immobilised Vehicles or immobile models
Flyers (including those using Hover Mode to act as skimmers)
Units which are fleeing or pinned

Other than this all other units and models can both claim and contest objectives unless stated within the mission rules.

To claim or contest an objective, a model must be within 5 inches of the edge of the objective marker. No model or unit may claim or contest more than one objective regardless of size. Owning player picks if this becomes a factor.

Objectives themselves are counted as impassable terrain but do not block line of sight at all. It is not permissable for vehicles or walkers to 'park' on top of objectives for any reason.

Note also that owing to these modified rules the strategic asset Hold At All Costs is no longer relevant as listed and should not be used"

There will be a couple of additional objectives, again taking inspiration from IAA2.

Kill Score.
Kill points will be added up for any unit destroyed. Gargantuan creatures are worth 3 kill points, super heavy vehicles are worth as many as their starting structure points. Keep track of the kill points, whichever army holds most at the end counts as holding an additional objective.

In addition to this, we'll be using the Lord Of War rule. This makes the commander of the army worth 3 kill points instead of 1. For this, we will be using the characters that have been with us through thick and thin. These will be determined during the campaign by the mutual loathing of the enemy commanders, and will be made clear before the showdown. To give fair warning though, this will not necessarily be your BEST character - it wasn’t mine last time. It’ll be the one who’s built up the best “rapport” shall we say with your opponents. Opinions will be taken into account but the organisers judgement is final. The points for killing this Lord of War will be added to our kill points score to decide the additional objective. If it is a tie neither side gains the advantage.

For fun, I'm including the rule for crashing flyers from IAA2. I don't think there'll be many of these, but it could be a bit of fun to spice things up.

The basic rules will be for a standard apoc game, though we will have personal missions. These will be written in advance and will be secret (even from our teammates) Revealing the mission before the end of the game means your mission is void. You will have the choice of three.

Claim most objectives in the enemy deployment zone.
Kill the highest value enemy independant character.
Destroy the highest value enemy legendary formation.

In the kill/destroy ones, the person who takes the last wound takes the prize, as keeping track of who did what damage is far too much work. If both players on a team complete their mission, whoever did the harder mission is named that sides champion.

The winning team will get 5 points each. The champion of each team will get 5 points each. Thus each player can score 0, 5, or 10. Only one player will score 10.

Anyway, gamers, let me know your thoughts or queries on these rules. I've tried to keep things fluffy, balanced, and to use some input from Imperial Armour Apocalypse 2 to make it work with 5th edition and still be fun and quite a lot of carnage.

Anyway, let me know either here or on the club forum who's definitely up for it and what army you wish to do. I'll need answers by... mid january say, to give me a couple of weeks to finalise details. I'll be running the campaign through here again, with rules and queries cross posted to the club forum.

Good Luck

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Tenacious Tau!

Last night at my club I played against a Tau player. It was Sieze ground, spearhead deployment. My army was entirely in reserve, as I wanted to try something different. Two vendettas, a valkyrie, a couple of outflanking penal legion, Harker leading a squad of vets round the flank, marbo appearing... whereever he damn well pleases, and storm troopers deep striking in for the fun of it. I was struggling to make up the points without putting something on the table (and with only that to fire at for the first turn I figured anything I put down would DIE) so ended up chucking yarrick into my straken command. Sure it's pverkill, but it finished off my points...

The game was really close, though a few things annoyed me. I don't know whether to blame my rolling or the disruption pods, but you'd think that over the course of 5 turns shooting a total of 9 twin linked lascannon shots at a hammerhead I'd do more than shake it once. At the end of turn 5 I wasn't in position (my army had turned up in 2 halves, despite the +1 to reserves the astropath gives) and Rich was winning one nil. Turn 6 comes, and I'm poised to sieze the draw. All I need is for my veteran squad to beat up one tau and consolidate onto the objective for the draw. They wound him four times... he passes all four armour saves. Drawn combat. We roll for the turn - it's over, Rich wins. Gah!

We played a turn seven out of idle curiosity and the veterans did eventually finish off the tau to claim the objective, and yarrick managed to get in and contest another one, giving me a one nil victory if there'd been a seventh turn. But bloody irritating that I have to chalk that one up as a loss cos he managed to pass FOUR 4+ armour saves. I suppose it calls for equipping sergeants with power swords, but to do that across the army would be a bit of a waste to me for how rarely combat matters to guard.

I could have perhaps helped myself if I'd learned the rules for Harker properly. It was only turn 6 I realised he gave his squad stealth, so they would have been +1 cover for half the game. And it was only as I was putting the models away I realised he gave them move through cover. Given that I moved on 6, then tried to move into the building on a 1 + 2 three turns in a row, knowing that ability sooner may have been useful for getting to the objective. Or, I'd have rolled 1 + 1 + 2. Who knows.

Anyway, a good close game, but irritating to chalk it up as a loss when I feel I should have got a turn 6 draw turn 7 victory.

Monday, 13 December 2010

Painting Contest

I wasn't gonna post the finished picture of this till after the contest but the "judge" popped by my house and saw it anyway, so I might as well.

This is my conversion of a tzeentch herald on chariot of tzeentch. I'm hoping to get some better pictures done at some point, but for now i'm happy with the result. The horror wasn't too bad, but getting the tails to stick on those screamers was a real chore. In the end I had to flesh them out with green stuff to a) keep them in place and b) cover the gap where the two parts didn't quite meet. At 20 quid for 3 you somehow expect better, especially when the plastics are so top notch.

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Let's go round again...

Looks like my Winds of War 10 force will get another outing!

My local GW are hosting a small tournament a week tomorrow, and having a fair amount of free time at the moment I've decided I'll pop along to it. I decided to take my 500 point combat patrol from last years winds of war out for a spin. However, this time it's 600 points... so I have 100 (technically 105 cos winds of war 10 I had 495 points) to spend.

Now I was wondering what I could put in that would still fit the theme of my force when I learned that it's not using combat patrol rules... So technically someone could turn up with a land raider. I have nothing in my force that could do more than tickle that, so that kinda forces my hand with those last few points. Especially as I now have to follow a standard FOC - I need an HQ choice.

As it is I've squeazed in a command squad with melta guns and a power fist, and transferred the storm troopers chimera to them. Their job will be to deal with any tanks the rest of my fluffy force can't handle. This also only gives me 5 figures to paint in the next week. I can manage that!

With a bit more time, and maybe a slightly higher points allowance (750 perhaps) I'd have loved to put a valkyrie in this force... heavily converted naturally, with the wings bent upwards and rocket pods on the wing tips - something like this really.

Maybe I will expand this force in the future to include a valkyrie, but I know I was struggling to stretch the ideas to 500 points in the first place (hence borrowing penal legion, effectively from Alien 3, to bolster my forces) so think I will only do that if a specific 750 point tournament comes up.

Monday, 6 December 2010

Armoured Might

So been doing some more painting recently, and finally picked up this lot that have been sat base coated for oh 18 months or more...

A basilisk, 4 chimera and a chimera with a raised roof for ogryns. Still got a bunch more tanks that are either unpainted or in the wrong colour scheme (second hand) but this bulks out the amount of vehicles in the right colour scheme giving my army somewhat more consistency. Which is good.

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Bitz Box Bonanza

Had a reorganise of my bitzbox and found I had more sentinal bitz than I thought I had (namely two complete cabs) so I took a stab at making heli-sentinals. I've seen a few similar things around the blogosphere, so can't really give credit for this one, i'll just admit this one was inspired by others rather than myself.

I think these things will fit in nicely with my guard air cav army I mentioned in my last post. I hadn't intended to include sentinals, I wanted it to be entirely airborne, but these should fit in nicely.

Just letting the green stuff dry, and then I've got to find a way to mount them on flying bases. That should be "fun" :-S

Thursday, 2 December 2010

First valkyrie...

Finally finished this little beauty. It's my first so won't be my best, as I made a couple of assembly mistakes (meaning one of the rocket pods is wonky and the cockpit window doesn't sit perfectly) but overall i'm happy. So, the first of my aircav is ready to fly - now got another valkyrie, 2 vendettas and 2 vultures to paint, before buying the rest of the wing... :-S