Monday, 8 July 2013

Clan Wars Tournament Report

Just back from Clan Wars, great tournament at a fantastic new facility in Stirling, Scotland (Common Ground Gaming). Five very varied games against cool opponents. New Tau’s second tournament.

Although it wasn’t a big field (about 20 or so people) Competition was pretty tough, with a good few of the Scottish ETC team among the 20.

So, usual format, brief summary of games, and lessons learned.

Game 1

Was against Chaos Space Marines. A combination of the Relic and Emperor’s Will, with Vanguard Strike Deployment. His list was a Lord in terminator armour with a bunch of Terminators, 3 squads of Chaos Marines in Rhinos, 4 Obliterators and 2 Helldrakes. He got first turn (I never got first turn all tournament, and never seized once!)

Vanguard strike is good for me. I’ve got room to deploy and space to put distance between my forces and the enemy. There was a big LOS blocking piece of terrain in the middle of the board, on top of which we placed the relic. So I deploy reasonably bunched up and hunker down to try and duck lazcannon fire from the Oblits and prepare to receive Deep Striking Terminators … which I do reasonably effectively. In my turn I Nova charge both Riptides and bounce them forward ready to intercept the Helldrakes and/or terminators when they come in.

Here’s a rules question – go read the rules on Ripple Firing secondary weapons when you Nova charge your Riptide…. can you ripple fire when you intercept? The main rule says if it works

“you can choose one of the abilities listed below for the Riptide Shas’vre to have (until the start of its next Movement Phase)”

However, the ripple fire effect says that you can fire the secondary weapon “twice this turn”. The question is, which turn?

If the ability lasts until the next movement phase, then can I fire it twice at a Helldrake using interceptor? I know  that “a turn” means “player turn” unless specified, but is this not different? I guess it boils down to which turn is “this’ turn? You could argue that if the effect lasts until the next movement phase, then it is game turn, not player turn.

Not sure what the answer to this one is. I mention it because, before I was even aware of the issue,  I used Ripple Fire to intercept one of my opponent’s Helldrakes …. the issue only came up after our game in discussions with somebody else!

TBH, don’t’ think it would have made much of a difference in our game. Over the course of the next few turns I tabled my opponent. Highlight (for me at least) was intercepting his terminators with both Riptides and killing all of them before they were able to do anything.

Game 2,

Kill points against Newdar, Dawn of War against one of the Scottish ETC players . His list was Farseer on a Bike with Mantle of the Laughing God, 2 squads of Dire Avengers in serpents, 2 squads of 10 guardians in serpents, 2 Nighspinners, and Geoff, the Wraithknight!

My opponent had first turn, and deployed spread out across the board. Hmmmm … 6 AV12 hulls with 4+ cover saves, and a T 8 monstrous creature ….. hmmmm …..  not sure how I’m going to kill all of that! I need to protect my double death rain squad and their marker lights, so I attach the Commander to them, to gain maximum advantage from Tank Hunter from the Puretide chip, and spread out. I was worried about Geoff getting to my tanks and beating them up.  I kept the Kroot and the Fire Warriors in their fish, off the board. I was worried about the serpent shields taking out my Devilfish, and then mowing down the Fire Warriors.

So my opponent moves his serpents around and bounces Geoff forward. He then opens up and kills a couple of marker drones and puts 3 wounds on one Riptide ….. wave serpents are pretty horrible, but the Riptdies and the Skyrays shrug of most of their fire power, and the Commander tanks wounds like a hero.

In response I have one of the most devastating rounds of shooting I’ve had in a while. I needed to kill Geoff, so I drown him in marker lights, fully expecting to use at least one Skyray and both Riptides to kill him. I kill him with one Skyray! I pick up 2 marker lights to ignore cover, and all 6 Seeker Missiles hit and wound, killing him in one salvo…! I then kill one Night Spinner with the death rain team (tank hunter makes them absolutely deadly against armour) and, with the help of a couple of marker lights, the other Skyray kills a wave serpent.

At this point things were looking up! However, over the course of the next few turns he managed to claw his way back in a very close game. He schooled me on how good Guardians are now (Riptides really don’t like bladestorm, and Battle Focus extends the range of guardians more than you would think). He killed my Riptides and the death rain squad by the end of turn 4  and then I had nothing that could even scratch the paintwork on his tanks. Turns 5 and 6 involved me hiding in my tanks, hoping he wouldn’t kill me! He did!

In the end I think he won something like 13 VP to 9 … three of those 13 came from killing my Ethereal! I almost drew even at the end. His Farseer was getting pelted by skeer missiles and was on one wound, but then he killed the Skyray that was in range.

Great game, though, and I learned a lot about Newdar. In particular, Scatter Laser, Shri Cannon Wave Serpents are pretty deadly, particularly the serpent shield shot, and Guardians are now also pretty deadly. I think we’re going to see a lot more elder (there were 4 Eldar players at the tournament!) running mechanised lists. Think I’m going to need more missile pods!

Game 3

Big Guns, hammer and anvil against Grey Knights. Coteaz 3 squads of acolytes in Psybacks, 2 strike squads, 3 Psyfilman Dreadnaughts and 2 Stormravens. Another ETC player!

This was one of the most one sided displays of dice rolling I’ve every seen! My opponent’s dice were stone cold. He could have been the reincarnation of Alexander the Great, but Little Geek would have wiped him off the board, in fact Little Geek’s youngest sister would have tabled him – hell Little Geek’s sister’s Gold Fish could have done the job …..  and he died last week!

It got to a point where I was hoping I would fail some saves, things were so one sided. Big win to me.

Game 4

Scouring, Vanguard strike, against Newdar (again). Farseer on a jet bike with Mantle, 3 Wave Serpents, one with Guardians, one with Fire Dragons and one with Dire Avengers, Swooping Hawks, Warp Spiders, a fire Prism, 2 War Walkers, a Wraithknight, and 3 squads of 3 Jet Bikes. Another ETC player, but admittedly using an experimental list. My opponent gets first turn (again!). TBH, I think he should have taken 2nd turn, but I guess he was worried about my alpha strike.

So I set up like before, with everything on the board except the Fire Warriors in their Fish, and the Kroot. He unleashes pretty much everything at my Commander (who was with the Deathrains again) and Kills him, after he tanks a heroic number of 2+ saves …… HOWEVER, the last unit to fire at the commander were the war walkers. The war walkers had twin scatter lazers and poured 16 shots into my Commander. He explains that if one scatter laser on the war walker hits, it makes the other one twin linked, and he causes something like 13 wounds. At this point the Commander has 2 wounds left. However, I’ve “looked out sir” so many wounds onto drones that there are only 2 more drones that are within 6 inches. Once these 2 are dead, I need to take a bundle of wounds on the commander and he fails 2 saves and dies.

The problem is, that’s not how laser lock works … it only effects the 2nd weapons on the walker if it is not a scatter laser, so the second scatter laser on each walker shouldn’t have bee twin linked. This was pointed out by one of the players on the next table, after hearing me groan, and my opponents cheer at the death of my Commander. So back the Commander goes on the table with 2 wounds left and the war walkers try again. This time he takes 9 wounds and saves them all. Props to my opponent for letting me take that back.

In my turn, the Wraithknight dies along with a Waveserpent. Over the next few turns I smash my opponent’s army, but it was very, very close in the end because of his damn jet bikes and the last turn objective grabbing threat they pose. I just managed to kill enough of them to stop him snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. The SMS on the Skyrays were pretty amazing at this!

What neither of us remembered was that my opponent’s warlord trait was to make the Farseer scoring! We only remembered after lunch! If he had remembered, that would probably have won it for him!

Game 5

Last game and I’m on top table against another ETC player, playing Crusade (5 Objectives), dawn of war against demons, with CSM allies. Sigh…. I really hate playing new demons. I can never keep track of all the power and gifts, let alone understand what they do, I never have any idea what’s going on … and the Warp Storm table is just stupid.

So, anyway, his list was Fateweaver, Demon Prince, Plague Drones with a Herald, Khorne Dogs with a Herald, Horrors, Plague Bearers, a Sorcerer on a bike with some Spawn and a small unit of cultists. Long story short, I made a mistake in deployment by deploying the Fire warriors out of their fish. I underestimated Fatweaver’s shooting range (to be fair I had no idea what his range was because it was some weird psychic thing, but I should have asked!). So Fateweaver gets a 2+ re rollable invulnerable save from the Book of True Names, flies across and kills a unit of Fire warriors….duh!

So, with depleted fire power I eventually mange to kill everything in his army except 2 units of plague bearers holding 2 objectives, a unit of cultists holding one (that I contest with a 4d6 Nova Charged Riptide, thrust move in the last turn, which also snags me line breaker!), and Fateweaver. However, by then I only have 3 scoring models left – 3 Fire Warriors cowering on an objective. He had first blood and line breaker (Fateweaver) – so an 8 points to 4 loss.

I made some mistakes, I should have started the Fire Warriors in their ‘fish. Also, I got my target priorities wrong. I didn’t realise until it was too late that it was the Herald of Nurgle with the plague drones that had the Book. If I had killed them/him sooner, I might have had a chance of killing Fateweaver. Ultimately it was probably Big Bird that did the most damage.

Need to play more games against Little Geek’s demons!

So in the end I came 3rd, but pleasingly won “best painted” for my new tau army (finished at about 1am on Saturday morning!).

Learning points to follow.


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