Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Toggog's Marauders: Chaos 2000 pts


Demon Prince - mark of khorne, demonic aura, demonic flight, demonic stature, demonic strength, demonic visage, demon armor, furious charge, feel no pain, frag grenades, axe of khorne, CCW


7 Chosen Terminators - furious charge, 4 with combi-bolter and power weapon, 2 with reaper autocannon and chainfist, 1 with combi-flamer and power fist
1 Chosen Champion - furious charge, demonic strength, kai gun, power weapon

5 Possessed - demonic flight, mark of khorne, khornate chainaxes, bolt pistols
1 Aspiring Champion - demonic flight, mark of khorne, khornate chainaxe, powerfist

2 Obliterators


7 Khorne Berzerkers - mark of khorne, furious charge, frag grenades, khornate chainaxes
1 Aspiring Champion - mark of khorne, furious charge, demonic strength, frag grenades, axe of khorne
Rhino - extra armor, smoke launchers

8 Bloodletters


3 Chaos Bikers - mark of khorne, khornate chainaxes
1 Aspiring Champion - mark of khorne, furious charge, axe of khorne


8 Havocs - tank hunters, infiltrate, 2 heavy bolters, 1 lascannon, 1 missile launcher

This army includes some of the oldest models in my collection, namely the possessed (old berzerkers) and the demon prince (bloodthirster). The terminator champion is a mix of an ahriman headpiece, a terminator champion body, an older terminator autocannon arm, Abaddon's left shoulder and trophy racks, and Jain Zar's glaive. The obliterators are the most recent addition. I never liked the heads that come with the models, so I switched those out with a couple of the plastic helmet-less berzerker heads. The demon prince has a rod going from his foot, through the prone space wolf, into the foam "rock" and the plastic base, where it's bent over and glued and taped. I heart pinning.

Against static turtles this force rocks pretty hard, but it has trouble with more mobile lists. It does have a low scoring unit and model count but in coordination they can start at one end and chew through quite a bit. Since c2 plays this as her main army, I've learned the most about their potential through 3rd party observation or by playing against them. The berzerkers and bikes run together toward concentrations of enemy infantry and hopefully away from vehicles. If they have an avenue of unmolested advance, the DP and possessed can really tear ass on vehicles or infantry, especially in combination with the bloodletters. Terminators, havocs, and obliterators are a stable, moderately charge-resistant firebase and usually do best overwatching the berzerkers and bikes as they make their assault runs.

I've heard almost all of the new codex rumors in bits and pieces but I haven't seen them collected in a meaningful way, so I'm not 100% on how these units will transition into the new list. My possessed will hopefully become khorne raptors, and the demon prince may have to switcho-chango a little bit... Can't wait to find out, in any case.

14th Tiefwalder: Imperial Guard 2000 pts

Iron Discipline
Drop Troops


Command HQ – 1 veteran with company standard, 1 grenade launcher, 1 missile launcher team
Junior Officer – bolter, iron discipline
Anti-tank squad – sharpshooters, 3 lascannon teams
Fire support squad – sharpshooters, 3 heavy bolter teams
Sentinel - lascannon


4 Hardened Veterans – 2 plasma guns, 1 meltagun
Veteran Sergeant – bolter

4 Hardened Veterans – 2 plasma guns, 1 meltagun
Veteran Sergeant – bolter

6 Ratlings


Infantry Platoon 1
Command Squad - 1 meltagun, 1 grenade launcher, 1 missile launcher team
Junior Officer - bolter, iron discipline
Chimera - hull heavy bolter, turret multilaser, extra armor, smoke launchers
Infantry Squad 1 - 1 plasma gun, 1 missile launcher team
Infantry Squad 2 - 1 plasma gun, 1 missile launcher team

Infantry Platoon 2
Command Squad - 1 meltagun, 1 grenade launcher, 1 missile launcher team
Junior Officer - bolter, iron discipline
Chimera - hull heavy bolter, turret multilaser, extra armor, smoke launchers
Infantry Squad 1 - sharpshooters, light infantry, 1 plasma gun, 1 missile launcher team
Infantry Squad 2 - sharpshooters, light infantry, 1 plasma gun, 1 missile launcher team


Sentinel – lascannon

Sentinel – lascannon

Hellhound – extra armor, pintle heavy stubber


Leman Russ – extra armor, 3 heavy bolters, pintle heavy stubber

Leman Russ Demolisher – extra armor, 2 plasma cannons, lascannon

Basilisk – extra armor, indirect fire

The picture isn't accurate just yet but this is my most recent guard list. I think it's pretty solid, and I would really only change it to incorporate units that interest me, like those new plastic ogryns, or my piggy rough riders.

Problems With Your Order

TO: Barney the Blood Guzzler, High Commander and “King Mack” of the Rending Angels
FROM: Imperial Supply Depot 286, Beryl VII

Commander Barney,

Congratulations on your recent founding from all the staff here at ISD 286! We know that the first five hundred years of a space marine chapter’s founding can be a stressful time, and logistics and supply are often the last things a new commander wants to think about. We at ISD 286 pledge to consistently provide high quality merchandise and expedient delivery to those forces stationed in our sector.

We received your supply order on 42.092812. Thank you for contacting ISD 286 for your chapter’s needs! Unfortunately there were a few problems with your order, which are listed below:

* Order Format: Handwritten orders are accepted in certain limited circumstances, such as emergency re-deployment (ISD FORM 188-ERD) or feral forced service requisitions (ISD FORM 152-FFS); however, our standard ordering procedures require the usage of our requisition e-form (ISD FORM 101).

* Item #1: “SPAM ASSCANNON.” We were not able to comply with this request as this is a non-existent item.

* Item #2: “CHAIN AND CUFFS LIKE TEMPLARS GOTS.” We were unable to comply with this request as this is a non-existent item. Please be advised that forces deployed on the outer galactic fringes may have access to unusual items that are normally unavailable in core systems like our own.

* Item #3: “SPIKY BITZ” We were unable to comply with this request as this is a non-existent item. Please consult our catalog, page 2556 section 82, for the “dos and don’ts” on ordering corrupted, blasphemous, heretical, or unofficially licensed materials.

* Item #4 through Item #52: The majority of these items were illegible or obscured by a large opaque drink stain on your order.

* Payment Method: In the payment method section, you wrote “TEH CH3Z.” This is not a recognized payment method. Please consult our catalog, page 1820, for our payment options, including COD, layaway purchase plans, fair trade, slave tithes, and eternal pledges of fealty. If you would like to apply for financial assistance, ISD 286 also offers low-interest emergency supply loans for qualified chapters. See page 2015 of our catalog for terms and conditions.

Please adjust those items indicated above and resubmit your order using our standard requisition e-form (ISD FORM 101). Once again, congratulations on your new founding and thank you again for choosing ISD 286 for your supply needs. We look forward to doing business with you!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Some weekend work

I made a few conversions today after tweaking my 14th Tiefwalder Combined Arms regiment list. The main list change was replacing both the 3 sentinels' lascannons and the fire support team's heavy bolters with autocannons. I switched out the storm bolters on the Chimeras for hunter killer missiles, added a heavy stubber gunner to the hellhound, and switched out the meltagun in the command HQ for a grenade launcher.

I adapted a few backpacks for my veteran squad and created a vet sergeant with the legs and torso from a vehicle sprue, catachan arms, and genestealer upgrade sprue (extended carapace shoulder pads and scything talon knife). He also has a genestealer skull on his belt and a toothed bolter (from a Space Wolves accessory sprue). I envision him as the sole survivor of a different Tiefwalder regiment wiped out by an encounter with my own splinter fleet. The 14th itself has not yet faced tyranids and hopefully "Patch" will give me some good juju going into such a battle.

I've also been working on the hive tyrant's paint job. He's in the final highlighting stages now. I finished the lictor and after going over lightly with 90:10 white:yellow highlights, I went back and applied the same look to the prototype genestealer and gaunt. It improved their appearance quite a bit so I continued on with the tyrant. Now I'm considering using some ultra-thin ink pens to add scores of tiny black spots in the yellow just around the solid black armored areas. I need to go pick up the pens this week.

Friday, June 22, 2007

New Hotness

Cool pics of upcoming kits on this spanish website, La Posada del Friki Pisador, mostly chaos:
Color pics of chaos spawn, the codex front, lord in terminator armor, jumppack lord, khorne lord, and CSMs
Marine sprues, terminator sprues, champion sprues
Photos from the last WD
Color pic of the chaos terminator lord/champion

and most exciting, in my opinion, new guard stuff:
Ogryn and commissars

I take it that's a bonehead, seeing as how his hand appears to be gesturing others forward. This is definitely a good sign that the new plastic Ogs will be less cartooney. Hopefully they won't paint them with those horrible 5 o'clock shadows anymore. The chaos dex cover looks badass overall, but the central figure's pose does seem a bit awkward. Part of him looks like he's wearing terminator armor, part of him is kind of puny (his head and the plasma pistol arm). Is that a titan in the background? I definitely like the firey reds and yellows.

Chaos spawns, I never really used them much myself; perhaps the new list will make them more common. The terminator lord helmet makes him look really anonymous. I guess I just prefer unique helmets or faces. The jump pack lord appears to match raptors fairly well. The possessed sprues are intruiging but based on what I know so far, my old flying possessed will be able to segue into khornate raptors, hopefully for a more reasonable price. I just don't know about that khorne lord. The pose has the effect of making him look like he's bringing down that axe reaaaaalllyy slowwwwllyy. As for the regular marines, eh ok. They're more poseable and detailed than the old metals I guess.

Looks like most of the chaos stuff, including the new codex, hits September 19.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


As the mass of dark figures approached, their corrupted weapons snarling with increasing fury, Trefain the Elder spoke quietly to himself in the ancient tongue. In his mind he recalled once again the darkest storm he had ever seen – one of the six-year typhoons that had come to his old home at Caer Nyss, the one that had taken his entire family – and felt the sudden buildup and release of pressure in his skull that always followed the invocation. Wisps of fog issued from the earth, the atmosphere thickening and expressing depth with moisture, and the wind began to scream as it wove paths around his armored frame and those of his battle brothers. Just as the storm became distinctly visible, taking the form of a swirling gray column amongst them, it whipped and pulsed outwards, towards their oncoming foe. They would need whatever advantage they could take against hardened savages such as these – Trefain had encountered such berzerkers before, and he knew they could be quite persistent in their endless pursuit of skulls for their patron. Through the fog and rain came several small objects, and though Trefain and his Wolf Guard identified them immediately, it was too late to substantively react. The fragmentation grenades exploded, scattering shards of fire and metal into the group, giving them pause ever so slightly, negating the precious few moments they might have otherwise stolen before the cresting wave of deadly madness descended and drowned them all.

Monday, June 18, 2007

14th Tiefwalder Combined... Now With Vets!

I'm messing about with a new guard list, switching out the special weapons squad for a deep-striking (or infiltrating) veteran squad. Despite my better judgement I brought sharpshooters back in, ditching the mortars from last game. What can I say, I roll a lot of ones and I'm tired of picking them out as losers. The close order drill is also sticking around, and anyways the price is right! I still don't particularly like the non-infiltrating command squads in the chimeras, but I'm backed up on modelling projects (nids, witch hunter retinue) and it will be some time before I even think about more guard minis. I think with BS4 and 3 anti-tank/MEQ weapons the vets will be more reliable than the old demo pack squad. They'll be trying to drop in and take out the backsides of big vehicles or walkers, or maybe harass small units of heavy infantry. I could throw in a hidden powerfist and honorifica on the vet sergeant (and use the old Ahhnold catachan captain model) but I'd have to lose one of the sentinels, and after recently painting up that third one I don't want to put it right back on the shelf just yet - I love that little pack of wolves! I already had a searchlight or two painted up so I filled in one last point giving one to a sentinel. In case of dawn I'll gladly sacrifice him so that everyone else can fire through the darkness.

Attention, All You Catachan Ladies Out There!

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Commendation: Elias Jakob

Private First Class Elias Jakob of the Tiefwald 14th Combined Arms Regiment received the Nikolaus Star for bravery, marksmanship, and perseverance in battle against the foes of mankind on Tiefwald, M41.61607. As his platoon attempted to secure defensive positions in the Wertherwald, his squad came under heavy fire and every other trooper in his unit was killed. Even after his nearby command element was wiped out in vicious hand-to-hand fighting by horrifying warp spawn, Private Jakob held his position and continued to engage the enemy with his plasma rifle, wounding a powerful demonic entity and destroying a traitor champion. He even survived a potentially dangerous weapon malfunction. For his inspiring display of skill and heroism, Private Jakob has been recommended to his commanding officer for HP (hinterhaltspflicht).

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Battle Report: Chaos vs. Imperial Guard 6-16-07

Bully vs c2 - 2000 points - Secure and Control

For this game I switched out sharpshooters for a mortar squad. My other doctrines were light infantry, iron discipline, close order drill, and special weapons squads. C2 fielded her now classic khorne/black legion force: flying khorne demon prince, flying khorne possessed, big terminator squad, berzerkers, bloodletters, khorne bikes, obliterators, and havocs. We played a random standard mission, which turned out to be secure and control with 4 objectives.

Turn 1

Chaos: The bikes roar forward and gain an invulnerable save. The Terminators shoot up one of the infantry squads across the field and kill five of them. They hold their ground, encouraged by the nearby command squad. The Havocs destroy the chimera facing them down on the other side of the battle and the command squad inside tumbles out, entangled in the wreckage.

Imperial Guard: The basilisk fires indirectly across the battle and blows up the berzerkers' rhino, pinning the passengers. The hellhound and special weapons squad moves up to put their all into killing the approaching bikes. Somehow they survive numerous blasts of gunfire and different templates; at least the demo pack didn't fall back on the squad! The last chimera and the right side guard wing opens up on the terminators, killing 4. The tanks on the other side try to shoot up the havocs but only one or two are downed. Already by this point I'd already rolled plenty of ones that could have used a reroll.

Turn 2

Chaos: The demon prince decides to join the fight, heading towards the main infantry formation. The bikes charge the special weapons squad, wipe them out, and consolidate further into cover. The bloodletters arrive next to the berzerkers and they erupt from the forest, charging into the nearest infantry squad. Losing but one of their own number, they kill all of their opponents and consolidate into another 10-man squad. The terminators open fire on the members of a further infantry squad, killing everyone but the plasma gunner, who stands his ground!

Imperial Guard: The Leman Russ demolisher moves up to reach the havocs with his main gun; unfortunately his shot goes stray and misses the chaos heavy weapons completely. The command squad from the broken chimera climbs onto the wreckage to get cover and shoot at the havocs next turn. The sentinels, hellhound, and Leman Russ open up on the bikes, killing only two of them. Mass infantry shooting kills another terminator. The basilisk drops an ordnance round on the berzerkers and kills 6 of them. Lascannon teams and chimera shoot up the approaching demon prince but can't do any damage. However, the lone plasma gunner passes his last-man-standing test and fires his weapon, inflicting a single wound on the prince! The bloodletters wipe out another infantry squad in assault (my guys killed another one though - thanks, COD!). The demons position themselves to move into another squad in their own turn.

Turn 3

Chaos: The terminators move behind the hill and shoot up the infantry squad they can see, killing three more with reaper fire. The havocs and obliterators shoot up the front of the demolisher, destroying the main weapon and shaking the crew. The demon prince flies over a forest and lands behind the hellhound, exploding it with a swing of his enormous axe of khorne. The bikes and possessed again hold tight in forested cover near objectives. The bloodletters charge into the command HQ and lascannon squad, killing them all and consolidating into the second command squad just behind them. The last 2 berzerkers roll blood rage and charge out into the open.

Imperial Guard: The command squad rethinks their position and dismounts from the wrecked chimera. The demolisher rethinks its foolhardy charge and pulls its shaken ass back behind the forest. The last surviving infantry squads shoot the berzerkers, killing only one, with the plasma gunner barely surviving an overheat. Everyone else brings their weapons to bear on the demon prince and he is brought down in a hail of mass lascannon and heavy bolter fire from the sentinels, chimera, leman russ, and fire support squad.

Turn 4:

Chaos: The bikes retreat back behind their forest, passing their dangerous terrain tests (damn!), and the possessed further consolidate onto the nearby loot counter. The terminators kill off the infantry squad they've been firing at to a man, but the man in question fails leadership (the command squads were all dead too!) and falls back screaming with terror. The havocs and obliterators fire on the sentinel in the open, shaking it. The bloodletters finish off their last infantry squad but their consolidation roll isn't enough to take them into the heavy bolter teams nearby!

Imperial Guard: The stubborn plasma gunner passes another last-man-standing and shoots down the berzerker aspiring champion. The Leman Russ kills two havocs with ordnance. The mortars, chimera, fire support team and one sentinel wipe out the bloodletters. Couldn't have done it without those two close combat kills I got earlier thanks to COD!

Turn 5:

Chaos: The terminators climb aboard the rhino wreckage and into the forest. The havocs explode one sentinel on their side of the field, leaving only a crater behind. The obliterators destroy the main weapon on the leman russ.

Imperial Guard: The Chimera kills one more khorne biker, leaving only the aspiring champion. Shooting from the heavy bolter teams (just barely too far away!) and nearby sentinel can't bring down the terminator champion visible in the woods. The second sentinel on the far side climbs into the crater made by his dead colleague.

Turn 6:

Chaos: The biker champion zooms away back into his deployment zone to deny the kill. The havocs somehow pick out the basilisk's obscured side in the distance and wreck it. The other two terminators climb into the forest and open up on the close sentinel, destroying it as well.

Imperial Guard: The tanks move to grab the nearby loot counter, demolisher and sentinel manage to drop one of the obliterators.

The game ends with c2 controlling one more objective than me, and together with the victory points she earns a solid victory!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Vivax Revisited #3

Excited about the psychic scream choir I’m building into Splinter Fleet Vivax, I refreshed myself on all things leadership. I couldn’t remember whether leadership was a kind of morale check or vice versa; fortunately it’s the other way around and all morale checks are specific types of leadership tests. That means those negative modifiers should work wonders when the enemy gets shot up, defeated in assault, whittled down to the last man, takes pinning tests from barbed strangler kills (yessss), or tries to shoot at the warriors or zopes hiding behind the mass gaunts. Even fearless troops have to worry about being pinned and subsequently rended.

Today I realized I actually over-counted the number of genestealers I own when making my last list, and was pleased to find that removing two from the broodlord’s retinue freed up enough points to give the sniperfex (ordered and on his way!) the reinforced chitin and bonded exoskeleton biomorphs. Sure, he would cost 208 points, but what a bad motherfucker! He’s got one pinning S8 AP5 large blast shot, two S10 AP4 shots, toughness 7, and 5 wounds. At initiative 1, I suppose his weakness would be powerfists, but if someone manages to maneuver an expensive multiple powerfist squad into a swarm of high-initiative rending bugs to get at him, they’re more than welcome to hack away at the big fella (I think I’m gonna call him Bumble). It’s also nice to have a smaller squad with the broodlord, as it will make things easier when I’m trying to infiltrate them behind cover 12” away from an enemy.

I painted up one trial genestealer and gaunt over the last couple of evenings, just to see how my paint scheme was going to come out. Here they are:

These are early versions, though, as I still want to brighten the yellow as well as add various black markings to certain skin areas to differentiate squads and give them more of a yellowjacket look. The gloss on the carapace is GW’s gloss varnish, which is really nasty looking stuff while it’s in the jar, but I definitely liked the finished effect. It does dry out pretty quickly, so I’m going to have to water it down more in the future. After I finish these, I've only got 97 more models to go!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Gazak's Ruse

Captain Josias nervously thumbed the camera control stick as the grim scene unfolded on the vidscreen. He had already dismissed his orderlies; they didn’t need to see this. With rank came responsibility. Josias wasn’t himself eager to watch the inevitable massacre, but he had to follow SOP and collect as much information as possible about the invading forces. They had repulsed three such raids in the last month and Josias was confident that with good intel, they could withstand many more. The camera’s point of view looked out past their eastern perimeter, towards the dust-shrouded Ghogan desert. It didn’t hurt matters that they always came from the Ghogan, he thought with a smirk. It was the only place left on the planet where landers could descend without being detected – the old radiation storms still blew through the Ghogan and on any given day they created a blind spot 500 kilometers wide and twice as long. Good cover for an assault, but anything that made it to the outpost gates had been whittled down by the elements, not to mention their forward guns. And yet here they were again.

He panned the view downward, twisting the top of the stick to zoom. A Rhino-frame transport vehicle and several armored warriors on bikes had smashed through the outer gate just minutes earlier. Once inside, the Rhino had disgorged a full squad of traitor marines, and now they were running rampant inside the outer perimeter, taking his men apart for their own sadistic pleasure. As he watched, some of them could be clearly seen removing and collecting the heads of their victims. Only followers of Khorne were bloodthirsty enough to brave the Ghogan radstorms. While they were extremely dangerous up close, they were too small in number and could be quickly surrounded. A judicious application of fire supremacy and it would be over. It had been the same story three times already. With his eyes still glued to the horrific images on the monitor, his other hand calmly reached for the nearby commlink.

“Sergeant Gregory, Sergeant Tooms, prepare to counterattack on my signal.” The speakerbox crackled with static for a moment before he heard the two answer in affirmatives. “Captain Yueh, keep your armor on standby until my order.” He waited, and after thirty seconds with no response he repeated his message. Then, after thirty more seconds, “Yueh, pull your head out of your ass and come back already. What the hell is going on down there?”

Suddenly, the shielded port windows to his left side shattered inward, and a shockwave threw him out of his chair. Josias opened his eyes groggily and found himself on the floor. He blinked his eyes and shook his head to clear that familiar cotton-stuffing feeling he knew signaled a concussion. All sound had been reduced to a thin whine. Taking a deep breath, he willed himself to his feet. Looking in the direction from whence the explosion had come, he saw that the large armored company complex was bulging on all sides, with flame and smoke billowing from the bay doors, themselves blown open. Suddenly, his hearing was restored.

“Captain!” Someone was calling him on the comlink. Yueh? What was happening? He felt like he was moving through molasses. Some of it was dripping down his face, he noticed absently.

“Captain – saboteurs in the hangar and foundry – all units destroyed. I don’t know where my crews are, I don’t…”

The comlink connection was dropped and the speaker went silent. Josias could hear the pop and boom of boltgun fire from somewhere below his command tower. He limped over to the shattered window frame and peered down through the cracks of the viewshield. Space marines in black armor were crouching near the base of the tower, affixing something to the side. Stylized yellow eyes on their hulking shoulder pads stared back up at him. Black Legion! Where could they have come from? This sector wasn’t even a…

He watched, confused, as the infiltrators finished with their task and scattered backwards, away from the tower. “Oh hell,” Josias had time to mutter, before the meltacharge exploded and brought the command spindle down in a shower of fire and plascrete. It was going to be a long day for the Imperial forces stationed at Jaswin. A very long day.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Sherwood Forest Landed On Us

At the Battleforge tournament I heard a lot about the changes coming in the new chaos codex, to be released sometime later this year. This Bell of Lost Souls blog installment describes some of the major stuff. Tonight I was reading through the Eye of Terror codex, specifically the quote from Eldrad at the beginning, and I was thinking how much more entertaining it would be if they actually wrote the fluff and unit descriptions in the new chaos book from the point of view of a traitor marine. The classic story of the heresy has always maintained the good (emperor loyalists) vs. evil (chaos-warped traitors) framework; what if instead they emphasized the betrayal or weakness Horus and his disciples perceived leading up to the whole debacle?

As far as the structure, I still don't really know how I feel about the new codex layouts (Eldar, Dark Angels). This fellow Andy Hoare, who is apparently involved in development at GW, discussed in his interview here how the big plan behind the new codex structure intends to "rationalize all the lists," but honestly I really don't get what he means by rationalize. Does he mean rationalize, as in, to make rational? What was so irrational about the old lists, I mean, besides them being completely fantastical works of fiction that augment a complicated system for simulating battle between a multitude of factions represented by science-fiction miniatures using dice to determine the major sequence of events? I think all of the books since fourth edition have been just fine, outside of a few missteps where they could have (and sometimes did) fix things up with a note in a faq. How exactly does putting the unit/wargear descriptions and their cost/statistics in two separate places make the books more rational? I'll say this, it's rationally a pain in my ass to flip back and forth until I memorize all the shit, which depending on how much they've changed can take a while.

Vivax Revisited #2

After some thoughtful consideration and a few tips from the 40k Online Tyranid forum, I've changed up my 2000 point tyranid list a bit, and I completed necessary conversions on 8 genestealers (used to have scything talons) and the dakka tyrant today. Now I need 2 more zoanthropes, a new plastic carnifex, and one more Macragge set of bugs.

The main point of this list will be to busy the opponent with 86 gaunts and genestealers while the scream choir/dakka elements move up and start "encouraging" reduced leadership checks. The sniperfex and zopes try to bring down mobile armor as they advance. I'm really excited about the first time I'll get to shoot with the tyrant. 12 twin-linked shots at BS 4, S5, AP5 that reroll to hit and to wound! Beautimous. The only thing I might do later is switch the lictor out for something else, maybe 2 raveners, tyrant guard, or a cheap living wall/screamer-killer 'fex so that I can put my beloved old model to use. I did change up the lictor's arms so that the rending claws are the top-most limbs, with the talons moved down underneath them. The look is a little different from the classic lictor pose but it matches the rending claws on my old warrior models as well as the genestealers. I had to do the same thing to the warriors because the newer devourer arm set didn't fit well on the top of the old pewter bodies. I think they all came out pretty cool. Everyone's waving their big ass claws around in the air. Hopefully when the time comes, they're going to party like it's their birthday, maybe even drink bacardi like it's their birthday.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Tournament: Battleforge Games 6-09-07

I played in a tournament at Battleforge Games today. It was my first time playing there, all in all a positive experience. I took a 2000 point Imperial Guard list, heavy on the armor and light infantry. Well, fuck light infantry. Only two of the three missions even allowed infiltration and while it is nice to move more easily through terrain, I don't think I should be moving much anyway. Sharpshooters, on the other hand, worked like a charm. I think I would keep it even if it was proven to me that it isn't statistically worth the points. It works wonders for those times when a fistful of ones would otherwise ruin your morale. It turns a frown upside down, is what I'm saying.

There were quite a few people present, something like 12 or 13, including Pat, who brought his mess of greenskins. I walked by his table a few times and his big mobs seemed to be hanging in there pretty well. I myself held a draw for the first two matches and then lost my third game by a decent margin.

Game 1: Space Marines

A. was rocking the Black Templars paint scheme but was playing a vanilla marine list, with a good mix of infantry and armored units supporting the centerpiece: a 12-man squad of terminators. It was probably going my way until his terminators rolled up my left flank. I saw it coming but had a few bad turns with shooting. Even with tons of lascannons and ordnance, it takes a long time for guard to kill 12 terminators (I only managed to get 6 or so before they started chewing up my line). In the end I think I was a little ahead in points but not enough for a victory. My favorite moment was when his 3 (just 3!) attack bikes absorbed shooting from over half of my forces for two turns before finally dying. I just barely saved my demolisher from meltadeath, even though it would be destroyed later.

Game 2: Space Marines

I had faced F.'s Ultramarines once before, and I knew about what to expect - a lot of heavy weapons fire from a lot of space marine infantry, followed up by assaulting veterans and jump troops. I think both of our plans were foiled when the mission was announced: patrol. Each army deployed only one troops unit with everything else arriving from reserve. That meant that most of our squads had to take at least one turn to move into position from off the table before they could do their jobs: shooting the hell out. Still, it made for an interesting pace, early turns blowing by with things thickening up late in the game. One assault team made it into my deployment zone in the final turn (a game objective), and I just barely had time to bring it down below scoring. It took a while, but I also enjoyed bringing down the lightning-clawed jump captain. Light infantry never came in too handy for this game and I began to regret not switching in mortars when I was thinking about it before the tournament.

Game 3: Thousand Sons (Chaos)

My last game was against C.'s uncomplicated but effective thousand sons force, consisting of several decent-sized rubric marine squads, two tricked-out defilers, and a 3-man obliterator team. It's always fun to drop tons of MEQs with my rocket launchers, but I made a huge error in allowing one of his defilers to scuttle up my left flank. I've never seen one fielded as an assault vehicle before and it took me a little by surprise. We called it a little early because he had to go to work but it would have just gotten worse for me anyway. Cool terrain in any case. The objective was a mite screwy but it kept things interesting.

Overall I think the guard did OK, they lived up to their strengths but unfortunately they aso lived up to their weaknesses. I had plenty of frustratingly poor rounds of shooting, even after I bought some new dice to match the guard green. Fuck! I'm hooked on this silly shit! At least they were on the cheap side. After my first Battleforge tournament I'm almost positive I'll be playing there regularly now; everyone I talked with was friendly and really into the hobby. Plus there's a lot more open space, the prizes for winning are more generous, and maybe most importantly it appears to be the most popular spot in town right now for 40k gaming.

Friday, June 8, 2007


After this loss and another just like it, I was finally able to defeat c2’s witch hunters last night with my space wolves drop pod force (the 1500 point version). I was going to switch the terminators out for a venerable dreadnought and 5 long fangs, and that still might be the best way to go, but I wanted to give the 3-pod list one more chance. For the first two games, I think I was concentrating the surprise attackers too much in one place. The terminators, grey hunters, and wolf scouts can do good damage on their first turn, but often the surviving elements of the witch hunters would swarm me with flamers and divine guidance, reducing my best units to dust in less than 2 turns. One-on-one, the wolves are easily superior, but if the more numerous witch hunters gang up on isolated or crowded elements, they can combo almost anyone to death very quickly. For the last game, an annihilation scenario, I was a little more careful with my deep-striking. I tried to land them just far enough away from the sisters swarms, my major goal being to split up the major threats and refrain from needlessly sacrificing anyone to the mass flameage. In the end the wolf guard terminators were destroyed, but the rune priest hobbled away wounded and the blood claws and vindicator cleaned up the offending seraphim and cannoness to make it a crushing victory for the sons of Russ.

If I did switch out the terminators for a ven dred and long fangs, I would still have two drop pods of grey hunters, but it would amount to a much different kind of force. In that case I think the main strategy would be to hold back and snipe, make the enemy come to me, and then use the deep-striking grey hunters to capture objectives or join the wolf scouts for rear-echelon disruption attacks.

I changed out the 5 ratlings in my 2000 point imperial guard force (the 14th Tiefwalder) for a third sentinel, to be attached to the command HQ squad. That gives me three lascannon sentinels that operate independently, sniping at vehicles and heavy infantry and grabbing objectives at the last minute (if they survive). I eschewed any vehicle upgrades for them, so they’re still pretty vulnerable, but if folks are shooting at them and not the tanks, it’s all gravy anyway. That gives me 9 armored units and 73 infiltrating or deep-striking infantry, 3 ordinance weapons, 7 lascannons, 7 missile launchers, 9 heavy bolters, 5 meltaguns, 4 plasma guns, a couple of multilasers and flamers, and finally, a demolition charge in a pear tree. Mmm, that's good squishy.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Imagifer, Uragifer

Imagifers cost 20 points per squad for Battle Sister squads. Squads of seraphim count as having one if led by a veteran sister superior. I was curious as to their exact benefit, so I did a little math (for the odds on 2d6 see this post) Here are the odds for Acts of Faith that require you to roll squad size or below, such as divine guidance:

2 ... 7% chance of success (4% more than 2d6)
3 ... 20% (+12%)
4 ... 36% (+19%)
5 ... 52% (+24%)
6 ... 68% (+26%)
7 ... 81% (+23%)
8 ... 89% (+17%)
9 ... 95% (+12%)
10 ... 98% (+6%)
11 & 12 ... 100% (+3%)

For those Acts that require you to roll squad size or greater, it's the same numbers the other way around (2 & 3 is 100%, 12 is 7%). Imagifers are most helpful at a squad size of 6 or 7.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

The Saga of Lors the Grim: Space Wolves 2000 pts


1 Venerable Dreadnought - plasma cannon, heavy flamer, extra armor, smoke launchers

1 Rune Priest - terminator armor, lightning claws, wolf pelt
4 Wolf Guard (retinue) - 4 terminator armor, 2 assault cannons, 2 bolter/plasma, 2 power weapons (combi guys), 1 chainfist (AC guy), 1 powerfist (other AC guy)
Drop Pod

1 Wolf Guard Battle Leader - frost blade, bolt pistol, wolf pelt, frags


4 Wolf Scouts - 2 power weapons, 1 meltagun, frags


8 Grey Hunters - 2 powerfists, 1 plasma gun, 1 plasma pistol/ccw
Wolf Guard Leader - power weapon, bolter, wolf pelt
Drop Pod

8 Grey Hunters - 2 powerfists, 1 plasma gun, 1 plasma pistol/ccw, wolf totem
Wolf Guard Leader - power weapon, bolter, wolf pelt
Drop Pod

8 Blood Claws - 1 powerfist, 1 power weapon, 1 flamer
Wolf Guard Leader - power weapon, bolt pistol, wolf pelt, frag grenades


2 Attack Bikes - 2 multimeltas


4 Long Fangs - 3 rocket launchers, 1 lascannon
Pack Leader - bolter/ccw

1 Vindicator - power of the machine spirit

The list tries to take advantage of the whole bag of Space Wolves tricks: spring into action, do moderate damage, and hold on tight: venerable dreadnought leader re-rolls for first turn, wolf scouts attack from behind, true grit, the mediocre yet enthusiastic blood claws, no Ld modifiers from being outnumbered, and counterattack, augmented by wolf-pelted squad leaders with power weapons. I will also typically use the drop pods to restructure the battlefield and close bothersome firing lanes.

There's two elements to this force: the ground contingent and the reserves. The ground forces are my heavy weapons, plus a squad of assault buggers in a rhino. I will typically break them down further into pack elements: dreadnought supporting the long fangs, vindicator and bikes supporting the rhino. The blood claws are the only ones in the army I really need to worry about charging, since all the other infantry units perform the same in assault whether they charge or not. Usually I'll try to grab an early objective with them while the rest of the elements take heat.

The drop pod elements (see this old post) are best against light to medium armored foes, and are almost guaranteed to get at least one good round of shooting, but they are always vulnerable to high initiative power weapon (also chainaxe/choppa) attacks. The multiple powerfists have to survive and triumph in the first round of CC or else they're usually finished off before they get a second chance to hit.

The main problems with this list? Low model count, everyone's on the expensive side (especially the Rune Priest's squad - 393!), plasma overheats (ouch), ever-present vunerability to high-initiative power weapons, and the Long Fangs only have one (expensive) buffer before I have to start removing heavy weapons. These are all issues I have to overcome with strategy, since the list includes virtually every Wolf model I own (excepting the land raider and a few others), and I'm pretty loathe to convert or paint any more of them.

A guy I met playing at Funny Papers back in the day hooked me up with a big box of old pewter Wolves models on the cheap, and I augmented that collection over the years with vehicles and bikes, as well as some of the new plastics. It's a mix of model generations - all but two of the bolter models are the new style, and the vehicles are all the old style - but I kinda like it that way. I converted the bolter-plasma guns from storm bolters, and used a catachan sword to turn an older generation terminator powerfist into a wrist-mounted power weapon, and the dreadnought's plasma cannon is actually ex-chaos gear. I actually did a decent job on my Ulrik the Slayer model (not pictured), but I never used him as the special character and I stopped using Wolf Priests after just a couple of games. Without all the special gotchas that other marine chaplains get, I don't really see the point. Rune priests and their cover generation ability are a much better value.