Saturday, June 22, 2013

I don't know what is right anymore?

I picked up everything from my army except for the commander.  I have been looking for a Tau commander for my NOVA list.  I was thinking of picking up a Shadowsun since the weapon loadout is what my commander is running (two fusion).  The issue is I can't get it from my FLGS.

I was thinking of going to my local GW and ordering it this week. I decided to look at Forgeworld for a good laugh after some of the Beltway Gamers said they were using them for their HQ.  What I saw shocked me.

Commander Farsight is $50 at GW. IShipping is free if I add some paint but I can have it shipped to my local GW and pay $53 with tax.  Not bad and I like the model.  It's Finecast.

TAU BATTLESUIT COMMANDER SHAS'O R'ALAI WITH DRONES from Forgeworld is $57.61 shipped and the 1% from my bank to change funds to pounds.  I really like this model and you get two drones.  It's NOT Finecast.

So, I can have a better model for $4.61 and skip Finecast.

Now, for my commander I can get the generic commander for $43.46 from my local GW.  Meh...I don't really like the model and it's Finecast and really static.

I can order from Forgeworld a XV9 with Fusion Cascades to have it as a count as a Commander with Fusion Blasters for $54.01 shipped and all.  It's $11 more but I really like the model.

This week I will order the XV9 this week.  Not sure when I am going to get the other yet.  Need a bunch of other parts for my Farsight bomb first.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Road to NOVA: Test Run Complete

Play Todd (SincaiN40k) Saturday.  We got to a late start and we called it early due to time issues (and his lack of sleep due to a teething baby, ouch).  It was an interesting game.  I can see why the "Skytide" list is so good.  While I wasn't running it, the parts that are auto-include (Skyray and Riptide) are beasts.

I was playing fast and loose with one riptide and was impressed with the maneuverability and firepower.  It put wounds on most things without incident and then took a licking and kept on kicking.  It also made them a massive target.  I think three would be optimum for most tournaments. Intercept with Skyfire was nice to have.  Took out an Eldar flyer and made the other jink. 

While I wasn't too impressed with how I handled the Skyray on my first outing, I will be making some minor adjustments with my play style to be more effective.  I also should be more aggressive with them.  Where I was fast and loose with the Riptide, I was reserve with the Skytide.  That hurt me but since this was against Todd's unit test it wasn't much of an issue since winning wasn't on either of our minds.

Hammerhead w/Rail and Submunition
I really liked it.  Nice long range attacks and could switch between devastating AV and pie plates to take out troops.  Longstrike was nice but not needed.  He did make it so I didn't have to rely on markerlights.

I had a squad in area terrain and they were quickly targeted (as expected).  Didn't do much but are needed for the marker lights.  I may swap them out for drones since I can move and shoot.

I used Missile-sides.  Really nice and a lot of firepower (on paper).  Too bad they did nothing but take up space and shoot up three warpspiders..  I will be using them in the future but probably not in NOVA. Get missile drones for add pain.

They were an acceptable troop choice.  Killed a jetbike and

Go big or go home.  You really need full squads.  You don't need hounds or sniper rounds with each but it helps.

Looking at Tau they have a lot of different synergy.  It also has a lot of different combinations that work.  Some funner than others.  I still think a Farsight Bomb list would be pretty fun to play.

The one issue is NOVA seems to favor spammy armies.  Just due to the missions and terrain layout.  I think this may be the NOVA that flyer spam dies.  I expect to see a lot of drakes and some Stormtalons (Thunderfury, Maybe?).  There will probably be a bit of Necron flyer spam and maybe a daemonic flying circus.  Should be fun.  I plan to get another demo game July 6th.  Should be fun.

Friday, June 14, 2013

The Road to NOVA: Net Listing Your Way to Victory

One of my earlier posts I talk about getting lists off the net and using them.  I need to start clarifying that.  The net can be a great place to gather ideas on what works and what doesn't.  It can also be a place of much fail.  That brings up when and how to use a net list.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

One of the things I do when I start list building is to look at successful lists.  Most of these come from tournament reports and blogs.  They can also come from boards (like DakkaDakka).  The issue is quality.  It's difficult to find.  Some lists just make sense and some make none.  Some require a better knowledge of the rules than you may have.

How do you tell the wheat from the chaff?  Hitting the books help.  Looking at the lists and determining what it does, what it requires and what are the strengths and weaknesses.  You can do this by playtesting the list but I think that rushes the process.  The best thing to do is study it and compare it to other successful lists.  It should be noted that just because someone posted something doesn't mean it's successful in your meta or at all.

When I decided on what I wanted to bring to NOVA (originally Marines and then Tau), I wanted something that worked with my idea of fun.  I like shooting armies and both fit it.  I also looked at lists I liked.  For marines, it was the Thunderfury.  This was due to my time spent being beat in the head by Dameon Green with his Thunderfire cannons and how successful my single Stormtalon was last year.  I took the framework that Mike Brandt laid out in his blog and started warping it.  I came up with a multi-LR list, a Lysander list and a few IG variants.

Tau was a little more difficult of a process.  I took multiple lists and started dissecting them.  I took Mike Brandt's Skytide list and compared it to the the Bell of Lost Souls list from their podcast.  Then I looked at the Farsight bomb.  I picked and choose what I liked and made some tweaks based on what I think would be fun and deal with the items on my list. The list is more BoLS then Skytide but I think it works more with my style.

Taste from the Well of Forbidden Knowledge

The main point in each evaluation was understanding what parts did what.  While I liked the BoLS list more for my play style, there were parts of the Farsight Bomb list that I had to use.  Why? Because it made sense with what I was going for.

The pieces should meld properly.  Last, NOVA I cobbled together a MotF list with only two dreads.  Not very good is it?  This year I looked at the synergy.  The list below is my current test list.  I am trying it out tomorrow.  I have 6 variants of this list that have slight modifications.  I think my 6th variant will be the final list but I will give this one a try first.  Many of the variants may not see the light of day.

Commander  - BSF, MT, CnCN, PEN, MSSS, Irdium Battlesuit, marker drones x2

Kroot x20 - Sniper rounds and Hound
Kroot x20 - Sniper rounds and Hound
Fire Warriors x6
Fire Warriors x6
Fire Warriors x6
Fire Warriors x6

Fast Attack
Pathfinders x5
Pathfinders x5

Riptide  - Ion, TL SMS, EWO, VT
Riptide  - Ion, TL SMS, EWO, VT

Broadside x3, BKR, TL HYMP x3, TL SMS x3, VT x3, missile drones x6
Skyray - BSF
Hammerhead - TL SMS, Railgun w/Sub, Longstrike

The Commander goes with the missile-sides or a Riptide granting them ignore cover and TL the weapon.  TL doesn't matter on the sides but the Riptide can work with them. 

The Etheral stays with the troops and make the SUPER.  Everything else shoot things.   I will try this list to see if I like the synergy and the play style.

I will try to do a battle report after the match and decide what needs to change. 

Blog Exchange

It's simple and fun.  You have a blog and I have a blog.  Let's exchange links.  Just post your link in the comments and I will add you.

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Hobby: Murphy's Law

I have been happy that everything has been going great with getting the Tau built and painted.  My first Riptide is coming along well. As are my Kroot.

I lucked out and bought some kroot off of Dameon Green.  Some pre-painted.  Some needing TLC. Some posed pretty awesomely with dead IG.  I also bought some Crisis suits off of him.  I started building them and then saw this video.  I like the idea of doing a red camo and this was pretty close.  So I started on the Crisis suits.  I got to the part when I was going to spray the Ghost Tint.  I opened the bottle of Fresh Blood Ghost Tint and said, "That's purple."  I opened magenta and it was magenta.  I emailed their customer support asking if I can exchange my mislabeled one for an actual one.  It puts me a little behind.  

The idea is to have both Riptides built by next weekend.  This way I can buy the other stuff I need.  Kind of move the stuff off of the assembly line and into the paint shop when the new models come in.  I figure I can be doing most of the building done and paint in between.  It will also let me get some playtesting in.

I sort of opened my big mouth and challenged a guy at the shop.  He is one of our better players.  He wants to prove that an assault army can beat Tau.  I said not only won't he beat me but he won't get line breaker.  Stupid move on my part but the game will be fun.  

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Same Path, Different Direction

Hey guys. Sean was nice enough to let me use his platform to post my thoughts on the new and improved (I think) Eldar. I won't be doing a unit-byt-unit breakdown in this article. Instead, I'll give a more "big picture" kind of opinion on the latest incarnation of the Eldar.

I've been playing the space elves since Second Edition. Back then they were fabulous and deadly in equal measure. They've toned down the fabulous for the most part over the years. Their big thing is that they can move very, very quickly, have extremely specialized units and are expert psykers. As such, jetbikes, grav-tanks, wraith constructs and Farseers have always been key components to the Eldar identity.

The ruleset in 6th edition has seen many people to declare that any army that relies on vehicles will be at a severe disadvantage. This is true, to a degree. The advent of hull points has made it near impossible for vehicles to be nigh immortal machines of death. Assaulting from a vehicle is now the exception rather than the norm, unless you play Orks or Dark Eldar. And finally, the way the missions in the rulebook are written will most of the time not allow vehicles to claim/contest objectives.

The new Eldar codex seems to be a throwback to some of the older editions while giving the finger to some of the preconceptions about 6th. A MechDar list is actually viable. Not overpowered, but viable. Wave Serpents have fun new rules to ensure they deliver their payload, holo-fields are back, and some of the best units in the codex are tanks. Jetbikes are better than they were before (and they were great before), the army as a whole is faster, units that were ok and crap are now good if not great (though some are still crap - sorry, Banshees), and there is a huge emphasis on Wraith-constructs.

For me though, the biggest changes happened in the HQ slots. Avatars got quite awesome, Autarchs are useful, Farseers are the psychic beasts they should be, Spiritseers allow for FOC shenanigans while bringing some potent psychic ability, and Phoenix Lords could be interesting. Given that Eldar are spoiled for choice, only picking two HQ options does not allow for the player to fully take advantage of everything on offer. I think for best results, play 2000+ points and use the dual-FOC. 2x Farseer, Spiritseer and Avatar anyone?

Once I have more games in I may start to go into more specific detail regarding various army builds, how the army plays, and the effect on the meta (if any).


Monday, June 03, 2013

BWG Summer Showdown 2013 - July 6th

Thats right!  The 3rd Annual Summer Showdown is here!  If you remember last years summer showdown, you will remember the crazy missions with debris falling from the sky and the world cracking apart.   In true BWG and RTT spirit, this year will we will be returning to that format (as voted on the forums).

Here are the details:

Beltway Gamers presents  SUMMER SHOWDOWN 2013
1850pt 40K RTT, 3 Rounds.  W/L scoring with VP's as tie breaker. 24 slots are available.

Sat. July 6th, 2013

Hosted by Dream Wizards in Rockville MD

Dice Roll at 11am, Event should run until about 730pm

Cost: $15 per entry to go towards prize support and raffles.  Please pre pay via PAYPAL to reserve your spot.   Send PM to Psybilliah for PAYPAL info.

Awards:   Best General, Second Best General
   Best Painted, Second Best Painted
   CYBO SKULL!!!!!!!!!!!!

ALSO:   Donate a piece of painted terrain (on a base and no smaller than 5x5 but no larger than 12x12) and receive 5 bonus points to either your Best General Score or your Best Painted Score AND you will be entered into a "I donated terrain" raffle.

FINALLY:  Prepare yourself because MARC SMITH will be the organizer and he is out to put the smack down upon any fools who are gonna get stupid.

-No Forgeworld
-No Skyshield or Fortress of Redemption
-New Eldar are in


Few updates.  I am currently without AC.  Luckily, I hang out in the basement and it's cool.  I have been slaving away on my Riptide.  I am pretty psyched about how it is coming out.  Going to post some pics on a separate post.

This past Saturday, I ran a 1000 pt tournament at Chuck's Comics.  It was the perfect turn out for the space they have.  Very cool mix of people.  Two Tau players and both made it to the top 3 and one of them (Ryan) took the prize. Beating out a green tide foot Ork list.  Being my first tournament, I was a nervous wreck but the players were cool and most of the questions were pretty simple.  A lot of experienced players helped.

I actually may have a guest blogger coming on to talk about the Eldar release.  I am not a big Eldar fan so it will be good to have someone that plays actual Eldar talk about it.

Next month looks to be the Apocalypse release.  Should be good.  I will have all my Tau stuff and need to blow cash until Marines drop.

That's all folks!

Sunday, June 02, 2013

Road to NOVA: Looking into the Recent Past

Beltway Gamers just finished up their "Slaying the Spring Flowers" league and it was pretty fun.  It seemed like I was the bane of IG but DE/Eldar ate my lunch.  Even though I don't plan to play Chaos for NOVA, I thought it would be a good idea to run this list through the list building requirements and see how it stacked up.  The list is below:

1850 Pts - Chaos Space Marines Roster - Khorne Juggernaut Sorcerer  1850

Total Roster Cost: 1835

HQ: Chaos Lord (1#, 180 pts)
   1 Chaos Lord, 150 pts = (base cost 65 + Mark of Khorne 10 + Power Axe x1 15 + Sigil of Corruption 25 + Juggernaut of Khorne 35)
      1 Burning Brand of Skalathrax, 30 pts

HQ: Sorcerer (1#, 170 pts)
   1 Sorcerer, 170 pts = (base cost 60 + Increase Mastery Level x2 50 + Sigil of Corruption 25 + Spell Familiar 15) + Chaos Bike 20

Troops: Chaos Cultists (10#, 50 pts)
   9 Chaos Cultists, 36 pts = 9 * 4
      1 Cultist Champion, 14 pts

Troops: Chaos Cultists (10#, 50 pts)
   9 Chaos Cultists, 36 pts = 9 * 4
      1 Cultist Champion, 14 pts

Troops: Chaos Cultists (10#, 50 pts)
   9 Chaos Cultists, 36 pts = 9 * 4
      1 Cultist Champion, 14 pts

Troops: Chaos Cultists (10#, 50 pts)
   9 Chaos Cultists, 36 pts = 9 * 4
      1 Cultist Champion, 14 pts

Troops: Chaos Cultists (10#, 50 pts)
   9 Chaos Cultists, 36 pts = 9 * 4
      1 Cultist Champion, 14 pts

Fast Attack: Chaos Spawn (5#, 150 pts)
   5 Chaos Spawn, 150 pts = 5 * 30

Fast Attack: Heldrake (1#, 170 pts)
   1 Heldrake, 170 pts

Fast Attack: Heldrake (1#, 170 pts)
   1 Heldrake, 170 pts

Heavy Support: Obliterator (3#, 237 pts)
   3 Obliterator, 237 pts = 3 * 79 (base cost 70 + Mark of Nurgle 6 + Veterans of the Long War 3)

Heavy Support: Maulerfiend (1#, 125 pts)
   1 Maulerfiend, 125 pts

Heavy Support: Maulerfiend (1#, 125 pts)
   1 Maulerfiend, 125 pts

Elite: Chosen (5#, 173 pts)
   4 Chosen, 144 pts = 4 * 21 (base cost 18 + Mark of Nurgle 3) + Plasma gun x4 60
      1 Chosen Champion, 29 pts = (base cost 18 + Melta Bombs 5 + Mark of Nurgle 3 + Combi-Boltgun 3)

Aegis Defence Lines (2#, 85 pts)
   1 Aegis Defence Lines, 50 pts
      1 Gun Emplacement, 35 pts = (base cost 0 + Icarus Lascannon 35)

  1. Cheap Durable Scoring Units: Well...kinda sort of.  The units are cheap.  Stock cultists are as cheap as the get but they aren't durable.  The Aegis gives them some survivability but they are designed to just get to objectives and pray they the rest of the list keeps things busy. They didn't do too well.  Only really surviving against the two IG armies I faced and one SM.
  2. Something to Deal with Hordes/Blobs: Drakes primarily.  Oblitz can serve that as well and mauler fiends to a lesser extent.  Drakes are built for this.
  3. Something to Deal with LOW AV (10-12): Lots can handle this. The Chosen I threw in there were designed for this.
  4. AV 13 and 14: Man oh man does this list suck at that.  Maulerfiends and Oblitz are the only items I have that can deal that much pain. Icarus and Chosen but that requires a degree of luck.
  5. Monstrous Creatures: Again, not much.
  6. Flyers: The best defense are the cultists and the Icarus.  Cultists spread out and the gun shoots them down.  Drakes and Oblitz can be successful as well.  
In the six games, how did it do? I went two and 4 giving up a close game to Mike's Marines and getting smacked in the face by Eldar/DEldar twice. Like I said it shined against IG.  

The main issue is I went for a Maximum Threat Overload (MTO) list but most of my threats relied on CC.  I had to get up close and personal and it didn't work most of the time.  I had to pray the drakes came on in time but when they didn't my lines folded.

How would I improve this list after 6 games?  Easiest way is to add allies. Since Chaos is buds with everyone's favorite allies, let's add IG.  

1850 Pts - Chaos Space Marines Roster - Khorne Juggernaught IG  Sorcerer remix 1850

Total Roster Cost: 1846

HQ: Chaos Lord (1#, 170 pts)
   1 Chaos Lord, 135 pts = (base cost 65 + Mark of Khorne 10 + Sigil of Corruption 25 + Juggernaut of Khorne 35)
      1 Axe of Blind Fury, 35 pts

HQ: Sorcerer (1#, 175 pts)
   1 Sorcerer, 175 pts = (base cost 60 + Melta Bombs 5 + Increase Mastery Level x2 50 + Sigil of Corruption 25 + Spell Familiar 15) + Chaos Bike 20

Troops: Chaos Cultists (10#, 50 pts)
   9 Chaos Cultists, 36 pts = 9 * 4
      1 Cultist Champion, 14 pts

Troops: Chaos Cultists (10#, 50 pts)
   9 Chaos Cultists, 36 pts = 9 * 4
      1 Cultist Champion, 14 pts

Fast Attack: Chaos Spawn (5#, 150 pts)
   5 Chaos Spawn, 150 pts = 5 * 30

Fast Attack: Heldrake (1#, 170 pts)
   1 Heldrake, 170 pts

Fast Attack: Heldrake (1#, 170 pts)
   1 Heldrake, 170 pts

Heavy Support: Obliterator (2#, 158 pts)
   2 Obliterator, 158 pts = 2 * 79 (base cost 70 + Mark of Nurgle 6 + Veterans of the Long War 3)

Heavy Support: Obliterator (2#, 158 pts)
   2 Obliterator, 158 pts = 2 * 79 (base cost 70 + Mark of Nurgle 6 + Veterans of the Long War 3)

Heavy Support: Forgefiend (1#, 175 pts)
   1 Forgefiend, 175 pts

HQ: Lord Commissar (1#, 70 pts)
   1 Lord Commissar (HQ) [Guard], 70 pts

Troops: Infantry Platoon (35#, 190 pts)
   1 Infantry Platoon (Troops) [Guard], 0 pts
      4 Platoon Command Squad [Guard], 24 pts = 4 * 6
         1 Platoon Commander [Guard], 11 pts = (base cost 6 + Melta Bombs 5)
      9 Infantry Squad [Guard], 45 pts = 9 * 5
         1 Sergeant [Guard], 10 pts = (base cost 5 + Melta Bombs 5)
      9 Infantry Squad [Guard], 45 pts = 9 * 5
         1 Sergeant [Guard], 5 pts
      9 Infantry Squad [Guard], 45 pts = 9 * 5
         1 Sergeant [Guard], 5 pts

Heavy Support: Manticore Rocket Launcher (1#, 160 pts)
   1 Manticore Rocket Launcher (Heavy) [Guard], 160 pts

Here we get a better scoring option with the guard and add some real anti-AV13/14.  The Forgefiend provides some nice shots down range and then we got two Oblitz for multi-purpose attacks.  I took off the power axe from the Lord and gave him the Axe of Blind Fury.  He attacks at initiative and has the potential for more attacks.  Yes, one 6th of the time he gets a wound but that is acceptable.

The one area of concern is the HQs and Spawn.  They are a big target and have to be in your face.  I think for this list, that is what we want though.

Next week, I plan to talk a little about meta.  It's pretty big when you deal with tournaments and list building. Plus the 11th Company podcast had a nice segment on it.