Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Imperial Armour Tau Units Troops

As I said in the last post, there are a number of new units in IA2, and in the recent update “approved” for 40k. Now, I’m not going to discuss whether this means you are “allowed” to play them, or whether tournaments should allow them in general play. It seems to me the answers to these questions are pretty obvious (“yes” and “yes” respectively, but that’s just me!)

First up we will look at the new troops choices. There are 2 – Sentry Turrets, and Sensor Towers.

Sentry Turrets

For 25 points you get a sentry turret, which is an immobile AV12 vehicle with BS2 twin linked burst cannons. You can upgrade it with plasma rifles, missile pods or Fusion Guns. You can also give it a disruption pod, a shield generator (4+ invulnerable save!), or the ability to deep strike. They come in units of 1-4.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Blood Angels Renaissance: Razorspam

Hello and welcome to part one of my Blood Angels Renaissance, today we’ll be looking at one of the most common Blood Angels builds; Razorspam

So we’re all on the same page a typical razorspam will look a little like this:

Librarian: Shield of Sanguinius, Unleash Rage
Honour Guard: Meltagun
Razorback: Lascannon, Twin-Linked Plasma Gun
5 Assault Marines: Meltagun
Razorback: Lascannon, Twin-Linked Plasma Gun
5 Assault Marines: Flamer
Razorback: Lascannon, Twin-Linked Plasma Gun
5 Assault Marines: Flamer
Razorback: Lascannon, Twin-Linked Plasma Gun
5 Assault Marines: Flamer
Razorback: Lascannon, Twin-Linked Plasma Gun
5 Assault Marines: Flamer
Razorback: Lascannon, Twin-Linked Plasma Gun
2 Land Speeders: Multi-meltas
2 Land Speeders: Multi-meltas
2 Land Speeders: Multi-meltas
Predator: Autocannon, Lascannon Sponsons
Predator: Autocannon, Lascannon Sponsons

Imperial Armour Tau Units

OK – this will be an odd one. I wanted to talk about the Imperial Armour Tau units now “approved” for 40k. I’ve been thinking about them a lot recently, and I’m pretty excited about how they can change the way the army plays. I was going to share some thoughts on the various units, but got a bit bogged down in drafting the post. The reason why I think is that I needed to do a “pre review” post with some more general thoughts, before getting into the detail.
So this is the “pre review” post.

Monday, 19 March 2012

Blood Angels Renaissance

I’ve been playing Dark Eldar for nine months now. They’ve been to four tournaments and enjoyed some pretty decent success. Nine months is a long time though and I think I need a change.

Enter Blood Angels!

Monday, 12 March 2012

Why does this hobby attract idiots?

Last Christmas I organised a narrative campaign for my local games store. There were 3 linked games, the effect of one having an impact on the other, with a story running through all of them. I wrote background and my brother put together power point slides etc. We had about 12 people participating, and I think (hope) everybody had a good time.

Except me. One of the people who came was an idiot. Loud, opinionated, a know it all and insulting. I overheard him in other games and I played him once. Possibly the worst game of 40k I’ve ever had. He spoiled my day.

Sir#67 at Games of War Day 2

Games of War Day 2:
I turned up at Games of War early Sunday morning. I must admit I was feeling the effects of the previous night’s festivities.

Game 1: I was playing Bede’s Grey Knights.

His army list can be found here:

This game was pretty intense. I can’t remember the turn by turn moves but Bede took some photos so he might be able to give a better account.

The mission was kill points (I had destroy 50% of enemy armour for my secret mission, Bede had kill the enemy’s commander)

Deployment was spearhead.

I won the roll off and after spending a fair bit of time weighing up all the options chose to give Bede first turn.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Soft Scoring in Tournaments

Soft scoring in tournaments irritates me.

There I’ve said it – shoot me down. What particularly annoys me is when “sportsmanship” scores are used to determine overall ranking.

Now I need to “declare an interest”. I’ve attended 2 tournaments this year so far where I would have been top Tau Player, but for sportsmanship scores. I’m not complaining about those tournaments. I knew sports scoring was included before I went. I paid my money and made my choice. What I’m complaining about is sports scoring generally. The “principal” of the thing if you will.

The whole point of sports scoring is (I assume) that it encourages sporting behaviour. Well let’s think about that for a moment. As far as I can see there are broadly 2 elements to “sporting behaviour” - how much “fun” you had playing your opponent and sticking by the rules. My contention is that sports scoring is irrelevant in both cases.

More Tau List Thoughts

So how can I change my list, taking into account the lessons learned in the last 8 games. The Key changes I want to make are

· Include 2 Piranhas
· Include some marker lights
· Lose the Burning Eyes
· Keep the Ethereal
· Keep Gun Drones
· Keep 3 Scoring Units (ignoring 2 units of Kroot who will always die, so 3 units of Kroot and 2 units of Fire Warriors in ‘Fish)
· Keep the Positional Relay.
· Maybe include Hammerheads.

I’m going to talk about the last point first, because I think it’s fundamental. The decision between Hammerheads or Broadsides fundamentally influences other choices in your army. If you take Hammerheads then your suits are less vulnerable. Sounds odd, but it isn’t. If you have Hammerheads people will shoot at them rather than your suits. They also give your suits something to hide behind. On the other hand, if you have no Hammerheads then there is nothing else to shoot at other than your suits. Also it is often hard to block LOS without them. As a result, it seems to me that, if you do not take Hammerheads, then you need to take gun drones to protect your suits. If you take Hammerheads, you can probably get away without gun drones. In addition, if you are taking more shots on your suits, then an Ethereal makes more sense.

In summary

· If you take Hammerheads no need for Gun Drones and (probably) no need for an Ethereal
· If you take Broadsides, then Gun Drones are necessary, and an Ethereal very helpful.

The 2 other points that need discussion are XV8 load out, and marker lights

As I said in the last post, the Burning Eyes simply didn’t work because they were so often out of range. The only way to solve that problem is to give the suits missile pods. I think the question then simply becomes whether you twin link the pod, or add a plasma rifle – i.e. Deathrains or Fireknifes. And (oddly) the answer to that question comes back to the perennial one of Hammerheads versus Broadsides! If I was running 6 Broadsides, I would be tempted to put plasma rifles on the Broadsides and run Deathrains. If I was running Hammerheads, 2 (or 3) plasma rifles just aren’t enough so I would go with Fireknifes.

As for Marker Lights, I struggle to see a more logical alternative than Pathfinders. You can get 3 on a Stealth suit team, but they are only BS3 and cost a lot of points. Marker Drones are too expensive (and are BS2!), and a Skyray is just a waste of a Heavy support slot. I’m afraid you are just stuck with Pathfinders.

Remember the problems with Pathfinders are

· They can’t move and shoot their marker lights
· They are vulnerable to both shooting and running away, and;
· You must take a Devilfish with them.

I can’t think of anything I can do about the first one. As for the second one, an Ethereal will help. As for the second one having the Positional Relay and the Second scoring D’fish also helps.

So, taking all this into account, I can see 2 lists forming.

· Hammerhead List. This one has 2 (or 3 at higher points) Broadsides, 2 Hammerheads and Fireknifes. Add pathfinders and piranhas to taste.
· Broadside List. This one has 4-6 Broadsides with plasma rifles, Deathrains with gun drones and an Ethereal. Add pathfinders and piranhas to taste.

My next Tournament is Throne of Skulls, which is 1500pts again. I doubt I’ll have enough points to do all of the above. I need to think about it and do some play testing.

More thoughts to follow.


Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Sir#67 at Games of War

Hello Sir#67 here again, with yet more battle reports. This time from the Games of War tourney.

Before I get into the reports a bit of background:
Games of War is an independent games store located in Seaham, North East England. They have a massive gaming area and plenty of terrain and run tournaments roughly every quarter.

Points were 1750 first day, 2250 second. This tourney started out as a bit of fun but the armies have been getting more and more competitive over the past 12 months. With all the authors of Apostates Anonymous in attendance this was looking to be a good weekend. Bede is also defending champion so no pressure there!

Tournament Round-up

Well! Over the past two weeks I've played 8 games of 40k and have come out with five wins and three losses.

The last day of the Games of War tournament started well with a victory over Sir67 in dawn of war/ kill points but because of tournament scoring we came out even on points. I then proceeded to lose the next game which was king of the hill, pitched battle against competitive guard. So although I went 4-0-1, I ended up fourth.

Last weekend, I travelled down to Stafford with Sir67 to play in Throne of Blades, a tournament organised by Mercer of the Imperious Dominatus blog.

I started off well, beating a Draigowing list ran by an awesome player, but then I crumbled. I played against another acolyte based list in game two and was subjected to the worst defeat I have ever suffered. By turn two, I had one razorback left and it was weapon destroyed. His list had two ravens and one landraider, not something I would personally consider optimised but it sure worked for him.
The last game was against necrons and was a close game that was changed because I didn't know my opponents rules. Never the less, it was a fun game and an awesome weekend that I would undoubtedly attend again! I would have to fight to regain some honour after being beaten so convincingly at the last one!

I have pictures of most of Games of War but I didn't take any at Throne of Blades, Sorry!

Up next, a battle report against Razorwolves!

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Re worked Tau List - the Results

So in the last 2 weeks I have played 8 games with my new look tau list – 3 at 1750pts, 2 at 2250pts and 3 at 2000pts. I’ve gone 4-1-3. At Chaos of the Warp at the weekend I went 1-0-2.
I’m not going to put up detailed battle reports. They take too long, and to do them properly you need to take notes and photos, which I always think spoils the game. It’s hard to immerse yourself in the experience when you’re taking photos and make notes.

But the burning question – how did the list perform?

Well – sadly, after all that analysis, it didn’t perform that much better than the old lists( L), but there were some stand out performances. Let’s look at the major changes I made and assess them.


At the weekend I played an Ethereal for the first time. Frankly the rerolls to leadership tests were fantastic. They saved suits running on numerous occasions. It also allowed me to re roll passed tests if units got locked in combat, so I could break away in my opponents turn, and dakka the assaulting unti down in my turn. He was only killed once, and believe it or not everything passed their leadership!

My only concern would be vindicare assassins picking him out. But if I’m facing a vindicare I would keep him in reserve.

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Sir#67 at Throne of Skulls Part 2

Hello, Sir#67 here,

Sorry for the delay, life decided I had more important things to do than type up my remaining battle reports. He teamed up with work there was no way I could stop them both!!

The following will not be as detailed as my previous reports because frankly I can’t remember exactly what happened in each game anymore.