Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The LATCS Event, Tyranids Win!

On Monday the LATCS Podcast guys hosted a tournament (sort of) at Battlegrounds, our local store.  I say sort of, because the prizes were not dependent on your placing in the tournament.  There was an entry fee of $5 which put you in a drawing for several prizes.  I hadn't played a game of 40k in over two months due to all my Fantasy preparations, and the events of the 'Ard Boyz semifinals left me soured on over-competitiveness so I decided to just take a "whatever" Tyranid list.  That meant I took whatever I had painted or mostly painted, or even just converted.

Here's what I took.  The tournament was 1500 points.

Parasite of Mortrex

2x Hive Guard
Doom of Malan'tai (I used my Malanthrope)
Mycetic Spore

11 Termagants
10 Genestealers + Broodlord

30 Gargoyles (I borrowed these)

Tyrannofex (I used my Barbed Hierodule)

The missions were a bit unusual.  Each game had 5 objectives and what are called "Destruction Points."  For every 200 pts killed, you get one destruction point.  It doesn't work like victory points in that you have to kill the whole unit; if you kill one model from a squad its points add into the Destruction Point total.  It's an unusual system and I have mixed feelings on it.

The third facet of the missions was the secret objective.  With this one, you drew a secret objective out of a hat and tried to accomplish this during the game.  I really liked this idea, it was a lot of fun.

My first game put me up against the frakkin' toasters, the Necrons.  The Tyrannofex took out his Monolith on the second turn and pretty much sealed the game.  The Doom didn't show up until turn 4 and then proceeded to mop up with his blast.  I won although it was not a large victory.

My second game was against Deathwing.  I have been playing against Deathwing for a very long time so I knew exactly what to expect.  He was running an all-foot Deathwing list.  We all know how much Tyranids love foot lists.  I tabled him, the first time I've tabled someone in a very long time and got all possible battle points.

My previous victory gave me enough points to contend for first.  I was tied in battle points with the other Tyranid player.  His list was a Mycetic Spore list with everything capable of arriving via Deep Strike.  The final scenario screwed with Deep Strike in that you always scatter even if you rolled a hit.  Mycetic Spores mitigate most of that problem, but it kept some of his units away from mine a bit longer than they would have otherwise.

The battle was a hard-fought bloody combat.  I had more shooting than him, and we both had the Doom of Malan'tai.  His killed a few gargoyles and mine killed two of his pods instantly so he was up to 10 wounds immediately.  My gargs and the Parasite charged him and finished him off in one round.  My Doom chased down some scattered Warriors and took a few turns to finish them off.  He had a Trygon Prime in my flank that was chewing up my units.  I fed it Termagants for two turns but then he got my Tyrannofex.  I charged a mass of Termagants into it boosted by the Tervigon's Adrenal Glands and Toxin Sacs and nearly killed it.

In the end I held more objectives and my opponent got more Destruction Points, while neither of us got our secret objectives.  So we tied for first place.

I like the scoring system that they used though I think that they could have used a bit more mission variety concerning the 5 objectives that were used every round.  As it was I think it was a great success for the LATCS Podcast's first event.  It wasn't the most competitive of tournaments, but it wasn't supposed to be.  I had fun and learned a lot about Tyranids.  I also got some Black Library books as a door prize.

Monday, May 23, 2011

'Ard Boyz Semi Finals Results

I went down to GMI games in Riverside for the 'Ard Boyz Semifinals.  Here's my list and how the games went.

Grey Seer on Bell
Grey Seer on foot

Plague Priest with Furnace
Engineer with Doomrocket

45 Clanrats with PWM
30 Stormvermin with WFT
10 Stormvermin with WFT
50 Slaves

5 Gutter Runners with poisoned slings
5 Gutter Runners with poisoned slings


My first game was against Daemons.  He had Fateweaver, a big block of horrors and a big block of bloodletters, plus two units of flamers.  I have never played against Daemons before and my opponent was really cool and helped explain what everything was and even offered me useful advice on what to do.  With the wonky Kill Points in the scenario I was massacred, but if it had been victory points the game would have been a tie.

All win/losses in that round were Massacre/Massacred.  The kill points saw to that as giving up 8 for a rare choice is ridiculous.

I was against Warriors of Chaos for the second round.  My opponent only had two level 2 wizards, plus Archaeon.  We advanced and I had him tabled by turn three thanks to my magic and shooting running amok.  I grabbed the Fanatic on the first turn with my Slaves and passed my strength test.  They spent the rest of the game getting away from the action.  He was a pretty cool guy as well and I learned that Warshrines are nice if you roll well.  I got a Massacre with full battle points.

For round three I was on table three.  Have a look at what my opponent brought:

I've got me a tower, it seats about infinity so hurry up and bring your Slann Shack money! *
 Yes, that is a cardboard tube representing the Folding Fortress.  It doesn't even have a roof.  My opponent told me that it has 10 stories.  He said he was going to make it 12 stories but he didn't want to be cheesy.  I wish I was making that up.  This is sketchy rules wise, as the Fortress says it has to be the same size as a Watchtower building, or a similar scratch-built structure.  This is scratch built but it's twice as high as a Watchtower.

His army had 148 Skinks plus a dozen heroes in the tower with two Slann, both with Becalming Cogitation.  They had poisoned Javelins and the flaming banner.  He also had the dagger that causes Fear in Skaven.  Then he had four Stegadons outside the tower.  His whole plan was, "Come at me bro."

I considered holding back and simply playing for the draw.  However, I had to get a massacre if I wanted to place so I decided to try and destroy the building either via Crack's Call or the Bell.  If I could destroy the building I would probably win by a landslide.  If I couldn't destroy the building I was in for a world of hurt.

I advanced everything and after turn 1 I seriously considered turning back and simply playing to a draw. I decided to persevere, weathering the dwellers and the fiery darts of the adversary.  Turn two I rolled a 14 on the Bell and my hopes went up but I failed to destroy the building as I rolled a 3.  On turn three I rolled a 14 again and this time rolled a 6!  The fortress went crumbling down and killed both Slann and 1/3 of the skinks.  That still left a sizable amount, even after getting doomrocketed.

At this point it took us about an hour to determine how to place the unit.  The Skaven FAQ clears it up but he insisted on being within 1" of my models.  The confusing thing was that I had charged them with my Furnace but we decided that they were not in combat because they have to abandon the building which would remove them from combat.  It was a really sticky rules situation.

At that point the game took a major turn for the sour.  After disagreeing strongly on issues for about an hour everything was tense after that.  Because we had taken so long to decide what happened we only got to turn 4.  I didn't break his big unit so I wasn't able to get a massacre.  I got a major victory and got 6th place.

If I had charged the HPA into the Skinks I may have broken his unit, come to think about it now as I look at the picture below.  That's how they came out of the building.  Hindsight is always 20/20.  Furthermore if he had a proper watchtower I would have had A LOT more models alive.

I got me a Slann Shack, it's full of fail and it just set sail!*

*To be sung (spoken) in the voice of Fred Schneider from the B-52s if that wasn't clear.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Who Says GW Is Losing New Gamers?

It seems that the 40k blog network is raging about how GW is dying and the evidence is that every time they go to their LGS, all they see is Warmachine/Hordes gamers and Magic players.  This then constitutes solid proof that they are right, and we as the internet collective audience are to believe them implicitly, feel sad for ourselves and sell our collection at Rogue Market.

Let me tell you a bit about my local gaming scene.  We have a fast-growing scene.  We've added lots of new players since our store moved into a larger location.  Some of these ended up dropping the game after a few months but others have stayed on and expanded their forces.  In the end, we're gaining more players than we're losing.  Even our Fantasy players have increased.  We're almost at the point that we need a bigger store.

There is not a single WM/H player at my store that I'm aware of (and I've been gaming at that store since near its inception).  They sell the product, and it used to be given equal billing to the GW stuff, but it's now been moved over to a smaller section while the GW section has expanded several times.  Perhaps there's some embittered ex-GW fanboy who buys the stuff but he must stay in his basement* struggling to glue together those metal paperweights because we never see him.**

Now that I have that irrefutable data, I need to go e-rage on some forum.

However, the plural of anecdote is not data.

*We actually don't have basements out here.  Stupid earthquake codes and all that.  How am I supposed to get my nerd credibility rating?

**Did I come down too hard on PP players?  Good.  I meant to.

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