Sunday, 3 June 2012

After Action Review - Blog Wars 3

So this weekend I attended Blog Wars 3 with my 1750 Star Wars Guard list. Blog Wars 3 is a slightly comped tournament in that you have to have a special character in your force... now my force includes Marbo who is basically a mandatory pop-up demo charge in most guard lists, so it seems like I may have gone for a sneaky option in this list... but anyone who has seen my Star Wars guard army will know it's bristling with character...

Anyway, I had been planning to take my new Necron army to Blog Wars, but then I saw that someone was taking the army pictured below...

So I brought out the Star Wars Guard and hoped the froce was strong with this one.

First up was pitched battle kill points... I was against a grey knights player. Happily, it wasn't an evil grey knights player - his army actually had, for the first time ever in the couple dozen times I've played grey knights... actualy grey knights. As in marines. In power armour. Without cleansing flame! I mean sure he had a couple psyfleman dreads and a squad of purifiers, but he also had a dread knight and an interceptor squad. His character was Mordrak and the ghost knights.

This game started ok. He shunted the dread knight and interceptors over and dropped mordrak in front of me to give me plenty of immediate threats. My vendetta ignored all this to try to take down one of the dreads - only managing an immobilised result. That would, in the next turn, cost my vendetta it's life. Meanwhile, the rest of my army killed the dreadknight, and neutered the interceptors. Mordrak however was not to be stopped. His generating additional terminators for ever wound kept him in it - he didn't fail a single one. He ploughed through the vast majority of my army. I dragged him down eventually though, and it was quite a close game. I edged the VP by about 50 points in fact... however the cheap kill points available in a guard army had him enough of a lead to get maximum points. Marbo bagged himself some purifiers, but a scatter on the demo charge meant they gunned him down in return. The special character being worth double kill points made that far from a fair trade. Game 1 - loss. 5 TP.

Next we broke for lunch, and judging of the armies for best painted army and best painted character. There were some nice armies on show, my friend Ken from Ignatum had some beautiful just finished tyranids. I also saw a more organic looking tyranid army that was quite nice (Pictured below)

Game two was spearhead, capture table quarters. I was facing necrons. In this game my opponent blinded me turn one so there was no shooting of note there. He then plodded towards the centre with most of his force, with his squads of destroyers sweeping around the outside. Personally, I don't take destroyers with my necrons, as I use Trazyn. I can't imagine a collector such as he would work with destroyers in case they, well, destroyed, that which he was trying to collect. However my opponent was running a destroyer lord and 9 destroyers in his trazyn lead army, so clearly not everyone shares my opinion. I really thought I was doing well in this one. Marbo turned up and destroyed one of the destroyer squads plus a few immortals with his demo charge (tesla'd in return though, so no table quarter claiming for him today - special rule of the mission, your character can claim) and while my heavy weapons fire found his two triarch stalkers far too difficult to take down (vendetta not showing up till turn 5 didn't help) I felt I was steadily cutting through them. My outflanked penal legion and infiltrated ratlings were keeping his home quarter contested, so all was going well as far as I was concerned. At the end of turn 5 we had 3 contested quarters and I owned one, but we had turn 6 to play. Seeing that he'd killed my penal legion and was advancing on my ratlings, I figured he'd be reclaiming his home quarter, so turbo boosted the vendetta to contest. Meanwhile, a squad ran towards the empty quarter. I held my position in the other neutral quarter while still trying to bring down the destroyer lord locked in combat. I felled Trazyn, and had taken away all his possible refuges... but the git passed his 5+ ever living roll. Damn you trazyn! In turn 6 my opponent advanced his necron warriors to contest the neutral quarter that was mine, while the other squad finished off the ratlings in his quarter. The necron lord and traztn took refuge in long combats, contesting my home quarter. End of turn 6, a single wound trazyn and 2 wound lord are successfully contesting my home quarter. 4 warriors are contesting the neutral quarter I have 3 scoring units in. The vendetta... is about 2 inches shy of getting into his home quarter to contest. The squad headed for the other neutral quarter... in, but majority of the models still in my home quarter, and when straddling majority rules. An extra inch or 2 would have sufficed. Giving him a 1-0 lead. The game ended turn 6. I was gutted! I honestly believe it would have been 2-0 to me end of turn 7 if not tabled, so to lose in such circumstances was galling (particularly as I had a healthy vp lead too) but such is the way of wargaming at times.

On the bright side, I'd matched the Star Wars Rebel armys game one result, so if he lost there would be a good chance we'd be playing each other... not to be though, he drew his game.

So in game three I'm fighting for last place against Kens friend Jon. He has Space Marines, and is a little rusty. The mission, Dawn of War sieze ground. I feel my opponent should have used his drop pods to contest objectives. He should have used his land raider more aggressively. When my vendetta showed up and killed his land raider, he should have used his termies more conservatively - running them into charge range of my rough riders was the last mistake they made. These mistakes were made horrendously worse by appallingly bad luck. Now Marbo showing up turn 2, just after a sternguard squad and Kantor had exited a drop pod, that's a fifty fifty chance that worked in my favour to devastating effect. His scout bikers charging my half squad of guard and only winning by two, leaving the survivors locked in combat, I thought had worked out well for him. He'd kill them next turn and move on in his turn. That would be the plan. But they didn't. They fought on. After they'd stayed locked in combat for a third successive round I moved my sentinals in to bail my men out... but I forgot to charge them! the men fought on regardless, and my sentinals chipped in in the fifth round of comabt, eventually my squad finishing the bikers off in the sixth round of combat. 6 rounds of combat during which I lost 3 guardsmen. Now that was bad luck. I tabled my opponent turn 6, the storming result giving me a massive tournament points boost (taking me up to 14th overall) and a hell of a vp score (1750 - 213)

So I was happy with how the tournament went, a little disappointed with the necron game, but wasn't like it would have cost me the title or anything. Now from the prize giving, it seems that my boy Marbo Fett had been tied for best painted special character, which is nice. I love my Star Wars Guard and think they're a wonderfully converted force, but I don't rate them as a well painted force - they're just too bland. So much white, bit of grey, bit of red. Boooring. About the only model I think is well painted of the entire army is Marbo Fett, so to tie that (with the one given the prize, the Swarmlord from the tyranids army pictured earlier) was quite nice. Why did the prize go to him, not me? Because my army had been awarded the "Best Army Theme" prize, and a battleforce of my choice. AWESOME! There were apparently some other contenders (a cool ape theme jokaero army pictured below  - i personally love the Statue of Liberty rising from the display tray) but the Tournament Organiser felt that I had done best, my army having many cool conversions and "you thought of pretty much everything" so with words of praise ringing in my ears and a cool battleforce under my arm I left a very happy man.

The army was well recieved by the rest of the attendees also, and has received many compliments this past week. Almost a shame to put it back in it's box for a while, but I've just built and painted 2k of Necrons, I wanna get some games with them now - especially as I painted them for Blog Wars and didn't end up taking them!

Many thanks to Alex of From the Fang for organising a cracking tournament. I'm not sure I can make Blog Wars 4, but 5 may be a possibility...


  1. Congratulations on winning best themed army mate, your star wars guard is awesome.

  2. It was a very difficult thing to judge and I probably won't include it again for that reason! The other Star Wars army was also excellent and it was a shame that only one of them could win.

    Congratulations again and hopefully see you at the next Blog Wars

    1. If it is not to be included again then that makes the prize all the more of an honour, so thank you very much. And while I'm sorry to give you a dilemma, it is so much more satisfying to win against illustrious opposition than if it had been "a star wars army among a typical collection of warhammer armies - automatic winner"

      I'm not sure i'll make number 4 but I will endeaver to make 5... I seem to like the odd numbered Blog Wars for some reason :oP