Friday, November 29, 2013

Change of plan, I am running next League... So a short one...

So, the next League will probably be pushed back to February...  So, I'll throw something together to keep the local excitement going I hope.  Looking like a few new books coming out and so a few changes perhaps...

In any case, I am looking at running it as a 1500 point event, I'll match up the participants as best I can and have a transparent long running "tournament" of sorts.  Keeping things pretty simple, I'll have a set mission, terrain setup and deployment so everyone is at least on terms as equal as I can manage.

Still digesting some of the expansion things, so at this point I am thinking that the Eldar/Tau builds are going to remain somewhat overpowered.  Looking over the FW reprint for their Imperial Armor Apoc book...  Looking like there are a LOT of the Heresy Era things that are coming to 40K...  So, Spartan will be fielded at least locally...  And I suspect it will become the norm if I attend Tournaments elsewhere...  No Flare Shield I did notice though :-)  So, the stupidly overpowered things look like they are going away...

Found a good reference picture for my Legion paint scheme...

 So, it appears as if I either saw something like this or simply stumbled upon my current VI/Wolf scheme...

 My own lads are looking frighteningly similar to that...  Just have to figure out the markings will be...  Thinking the red markings will be it.  I never liked the almost Mardi Gras Marine look of he 2nd Edition with the baby blue armor and bright yellow and red markings.  So, I had stripped a LOT of ancient Marines and repainting them like this...  Of course, manufacturing shields for me Siege Breachers to fill in the holes...  It is amazing comparing the modern minis to the ones I have from the 80's...  Damn, some of those ancient minis are craptastic...

Monday, November 25, 2013

Leagues, Expansions and just random "waiting for responses" time killing rants...

So, with the League looking like it will be a start...  Eventually :-)...  Whatever, it is creating some good chatter and looking like it might bring out a fair number of the players.  Guessing again, but I am kind of looking forward to playing my Legion lists against the modern things.  There are some things I am fairly certain that will be difficult to handle but overall I have a fairly strong list.  Strong but I think certainly not overpowered.  Still no fliers of my own, and AV 14 really isn't THAT hard to take down for most forces especially when you realize it is really just 3 Land Raiders, more or less...  But I DO field a LOT of standard Marines or Siege Breachers in the Legion lists I play, and FnP and good Cover/crap Invulnerable saves all around make for a difficult Squad to pull off the table quickly.  Nothing at all subtle, playing the VI Legion the way I used to play my wolves in the ancient times...  Roll straight at them, kill as many as you can and hold what you have taken.  So, pretty much just like I play every army I normally play, FT, Wolves, Eldar, etc...  Except maybe my Praetorian IG...  They are more of a "Hold the Line, Shoot them off the table" sort of Army, not a lot of mobility.

Barring my Legion list?  Well, I have a strong Marine army and my Eldar would be brutally overpowered.  I HAVE the flier now, albeit a paper model a buddy of mine built for me.  I can field a force that can easily take down the annoying Tau lists with either of those I am sure...  Eldar with the WS mounted force are just too good I think but if that's the way the local group wants to go I can...  And with a lot of the forces I am seeing out there it will be at least a fight.  Still, I'd RATHER go with the Legion force and play just for fun. 

My Marine list is a Crimson Fist one so using the Imperial Fist chapter tactics.  Centurion Devastators backed by Hunter AA tank and/or a Thunderfire Cannon for the "base" unit.  Scouts for scoring Troops, maybe Sternguard and Pedro...  Been liking the Storm Raven for a dogfighter/air superiority fighter.  200 points though...  Still, it works really well keeping me at least even with enemy fliers and can also do quite a number on tanks or heavy Infantry it catches in the open.  If I really want to cheese it up I can call it a "3rd Company" list and use the expansion to take the Centurions as Elite instead of Heavy.  Get a slightly different "Bolter Drill" as well....  Frankly I prefer the one in the expansion's drill, but either works well enough for me. 

So, that brings me to the expansions...  As of now, there are six?  It is looking more like the expansions are becoming the norm for the uber competitive forces...  The simple ability to"ally" with your base list and break the FOC is a problem for me.  The extra HQ slot is no big deal, it really seems that the Heavy slot is the problem.  So a legal list with four Riptides is the new rage...  Honestly haven't looked much at the Inquisition or Iron Hands ones...  Not armies I have any interest in playing.  But it appears that the Inquisition book is just a cut and paste rush job.  One of the bigger issues I have with the move to digital is that the local game store sees nothing from these books.  Yes, a few months later they might print limited numbers of physical books that they can jump through the appropriate hoops to buy to maybe sell...  But with the pace of the releases?  Why bother buying the physical book six months late when the next big thing in the power cycle is out?  So, other than the potential extra miniature sales as the latest uber net list hits the tables, nothing for anyone but GW...  And not much of that I'd think frankly...  Not sure what the margins are for a cut and paste PDF, but would think it would be good given the ownership of the original material and the fact that an intern could throw this together in an afternoon...  That and they are REALLY a PITA for tournament play as not everyone would have access to the full rules, so they have to take their opponent at their word as to the interpretation of the few new rules and FOC modifications in each book...  Or the TO has to know them all and keep a watchful eye out for "mistakes" being made.  Might well be honest ones, but when there is money on the table...  Well, have to say I am less enthused about the potential Adepticon trip, and likely will not bother trying to play in that mess.  Looking like at least one more REAL Codex will be out by then, likely 2 and some unknown number of digital supplements to all have the potential of further throwing the game's balance out of whack...  Think I'll just sit back and see what happens.  

So, the unofficial announcement has hit about the fortifications and escalation expansions...  Another wait and see I guess.  Really hoping that the Skyshield is fixed and the rules are cleared up...  But of course, if they are not freely available to everyone, this is a huge problem for me at least...  Having to pay a LOT for broken rules and then having to pay even more to get the fixes?  How very Apple of them.  I know that they will be available via "alternate" methods, and so will VERY likely be dissimulated locally at least (at least the relevant "you need to know the actual rules sections")...  I dunno, thinking of picking up some X-Wing and maybe Malifoux (sp?)...  Just concerned about getting into another "Confrontation" situation where I have huge armies of amazing miniatures for a game system that is dead and gone.  Been burned a few times too many in the past...  Perhaps Warmachine?  Hell, I already HAVE a Cygnar and Circle army from the 1st edition, so a trivial investment...  Maybe :-)...

Friday, November 22, 2013

League coming up, Superheavies and a few pics...

So, looking like a League is starting back up in the Champaign area again…  And with Bill stepping in to run it I do not have to J… Crazy schedule and of course that whole “real life” thing getting in the way…  He is making mention of a painting contest to get things started.  Mkay, repainting my ancient Wolves and I have another squad of the Cataphractii Terminators unassembled to go with the Siege Breachers…  So, nothing is going to be winning any sort of painting competition, but I have a bunch of “painted to tabletop standard” stuff almost ready to go.  Depending on the size of the game I may already have my heavy vehicles assembled…  OK, not the new Spartan…  That will be one thing that I order if there is the money after getting that whole Christmas thing dealt with for Maggie and the girls.  Unless of course someone wants to pick up say, an ancient Lugar or the like cheap(ish)…  And of course there are the issues of whether the locals will allow the use of 30K/Heresy Era lists and whether GW will be pushing out the rumored expansion with “Lords of War” or superheavies.  For the first, we’ve had no problem with them overall, and as I have been “play testing” the exact lists I will be playing in the League (more or less) to good effect overall I think that part will not be an issue. 

Superheavies on the field, and I honestly count the Spartans as an “almost” superheavies, are things that could potentially be a problem for some armies.  With immunity to Melta and 5 Hull Points, the Spartan can be almost impossible for some armies to deal with.  OTOH, it is just a big, expensive dead box for other armies who do not care about AV 14 or the like…  Tau specifically I think will have a horribly difficult time without Eldar allies if they build a…  Let’s call it “tightly focused” army to kill off Marines are going to have almost nothing capable of realistically threatening ANY AV 14, much less the Ceremite plated AV 14 I field…  To be fair though, the AV 14 of the Land Raider has never been all that difficult to get through for the last few editions a least, so most people are simply not bringing them these days.  I however have 2 MK I Land raiders done up as original Spartans to become either Proteus or Phobos Land Raiders.  Depends I guess how I end up going with my Wolves.  But in any case, I can see the addition of big nasties as something that should seriously shake up things from a “meta” build perspective.  Might not, who knows.  Really is a rumor at this point in any case, so nothing solid known.  But with plastic kits to sell for things like IG Baneblades, Ork Stompas, Chaos Khorne blood Zambonis or whatever it is called…  It would be unsurprising to find the game expanding to allow their use and incidentally the increased sales that this would presumably bring.  So, just thinking that the Superheavies are coming, might be a good thing to be ready…  The TL LC is what passes for AA support for my lists at the moment, so having the 4 shots/turn is nice…

So, here's the Cataphractii I have been working on, but having just gotten back from Vegas with Maggie for out Anniversary, not a lot of painting this week...

So, that's what my VI Legion color scheme will be...

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Long ramble about the current balance and the local 40K scene...

Ok, got to thinking about some of the more difficult balance issues...  Reading the excellent post on the Jawaballs site (, it kind of crystallized some of how I have been feeling with respect to a lot of the balance issues.  There are some armies that I have that are simply unplayable at the moment.  Well, to be entirely honest, I could PLAY the army, but barring some crazy luck actually winning with the army is nigh impossible.  These days you only hear about people fielding the Wolves as an ally because they still have the 5th edition rules for psychic defenses and some silly over the top powers.  They cannot stand on their own without major support.  Lacking antiaircraft or any Fliers of their own unless you play with Forgeworld as "40K legal" (like we do) they are still a mid 5th ed army that has been passed by... My Fleshtearers are not AS bad in some ways but they were written when the game was very different.  They DO have a single good flyer that can at least dogfight to contest air superiority...  But their HQ elements are now overpriced and the Troops are mediocre at best, despite the large number of potential choices...  Some cannot score, so are useless to win games, others are just expensive Marines who cannot survive the modern environment with Heldrakes, Tau and Eldar out there in force.  The standard Marine was once the measure by which you could compare everything else against, but now I would not bother making that comparison. By and large, all of the 3+ save Codices prior to the current Marine one are vastly overshadowed by the Eldar and Tau.  The current Marine book can at least fight against some of the "net lists" on somewhat even or better footing, but that means tailoring your army to be one element of the Rock-Paper-Scissors...  And therefore just expensive and boring to play.  Or play against.  The game is difficult to justify as a competitive one these days, thus the exodus in many places or the rise in popularity for 30K "Heresy Era" games that we are seeing locally.  Saying that, there were  5-6 games at the Gopher Monday for "40K night"...  So, chances are that locally at least the game is doing well enough after a bit of a lull.  I simply do not have the spare time to run a League well at the moment, and the other guys who in the past ran them have likewise been buried in a similar fashion...

Too many of the current "top tier" armies have a large number of special cases or things which ignore or worse break basic rules of the game.  For instance, the Necron book made an amazing transition to sixth edition with the extremely poorly ported rules for "chariots" and the en masse translation of all of their transports to Fliers from fast skimmers...  Suddenly the perhaps slightly overpriced transport is now a massively under priced monstrosity.  Flying around, deploying Troops precisely on the Field with no risk of deviation, loaded out with pretty decent firepower on their own and with massive defensive bonuses.  And for this ONE Flier, getting shot down has no real ill effect for the embarked Troops, they simply come in on your table edge from Reserves as if nothing happened.  No possibility of casualties (5/6 chance for everyone else), no Pin check, no deploying at a potentially "bad" location to be assaulted immediately...  Just the minor inconvenience of having to walk on to the field.  

The rules for firing at fliers are badly written...  Just my opinion of course, but saying a genetically engineered superhuman with centuries of experience firing advanced weaponry can hit a flier no better than a mindless Ork or untrained conscript with let's call them "less advanced weapons"?  Insane, and clearly not balanced in any way.  As more Codices come out, overall the Fliers are balanced against each other with the glaring exceptions of the Heldrake and the ones "grandfathered in".  The IG Vendetta/Valkyrie and the Necron Croissant of Doom being the big ones.  Ironically, the Marine fliers were massively overpriced before and so seem fairly balanced in the case of the Storm Raven or still overpriced in the case of the Storm Talon.  But saying that, if that's what you have, use it.  I have used both to decent effect as straight out "Air Superiority fighters".  Nothing great, but they at least left me feeling not totally outclassed by what the other player could field, and that is pretty much all I am asking for.

Saying that, the rules, such as they are, for Fortifications are the game breaker for me.  This alone is the main reason I have almost zero interest in trying to get a team together for Adepticon.  Really, the current RAW interpretation for the Skyshield Landing Pad being that it does grant a 3+ cover save as a Fortification in addition to the 4++ save for everything on it against all shooting attacks.  Coupled with a strict RAW interpretation of "Ignores cover" (RAW: Wounds taken, so no effect vs. Vehicles), Eldar Wave Serpents sitting on one covering a Wraith Knight to give 25% cover to it?  Well, the WS has a 2+ cover save that cannot be ignored even if it does not move.  The WK gets a 2+ or 3+ depending and a 4++...  Oh, and nothing can get up there physically to engage in HtH because the whole surface is full.  So, they have a fire base that can pour out SO MUCH fire that most other forces simply melt away...  The only thing I thought of was to drop in a Sternguard Squad or the like and simply target the Building.  But I haven't seen a good ruling for what happens if the Building is "degraded" or destroyed...  Does the fortification lose that status and the ++ save generated by it?  Should, I would think but that is not necessarily the case of course...

So, I have at least one army I feel bad playing...  Eldar.  Simply TOO good these days.  Playing against a mirror force or against the legal but silly ally with yourself things like Tau/Tau or Marine/Marine just does not interest me at all.  Yes, I can build a proxy army using ancient Planetstorm Fantasian Armor, and build the specific Rock to that Scissors, but that REALLY does not interest me at all.  And the actual figures in question...  Sorry, I REALLY do not like them at all.  So, no "GW Official" Tournaments for me it would seem with my Centurion Devastator proxies, despite being WYSIWYG and painted the correct colors :-)  No big deal for me really, I'd be shocked if GW came back to the big tournament scene...  

And saying I have one army too powerful to play, I have 2 that are unplayable in the other direction.  Fleshtearers are a lost cause currently.  Fun to surprise some folks with on a rare occasion, but against all but the silliest and most unbalanced lists they are just bad.  Wolves are being repainted and I am fielding the VI Legion as a Heresy Era force.  They are doing fairly well there, and I am having fun playing that...  Shame that FW can bring out balanced and fun forces while GW fails miserably...  The figures are amazing, but really pricey...  But saying that, the amazing Forgeworld minis are at about the same price point as the new GW Plastics/crap resin stuff.  Maybe FW will be sold through GW's distribution channels and we can get it at the local stores some day, but for now it is mostly beyond my reach...

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Veteran Squads out and more Legion "stuff"

Ok, so I’ve tried the Veteran Tactical Squad as Troops a few times…  Have to say I’m not liking it overall.  Yes, occasionally it does some neat things like placing a number of Wounds on say, a Spirit Seer or maybe even rends to get a Glance on a Wave Serpent…  But the Squad cost 270 points + 65 for the Medic for what was essentially a Tactical Squad with 2 Heavy Bolters.  Hiding in a Ruin and lacking real Transport meant that in this case we were pretty much SOL…  I SHOULD have flanked them and had them cause havoc in the Eldar backfield like my 40K Wolves…  Then at least they might have dealt with a few Guardian Squads before they died…  But still, 335 points for 11 Marines is a bit much.  2 of them have Artificer Armor and they have FnP until I lose the Medic, but for that cost I can get 10 Terminator suits onto the field.  And in 30K lists, Terminators ARE scoring units, Troops or no.  So 2+/4++ saves and Power Weapons for everyone seems like a better buy overall.  Fortunate that I happen to HAVE 5 Cataphractii assembled now and another 5 getting ready…  The 10 man Squad with the Spartan as a Dedicated Transport would be an insanely expensive thing, but Scoring Terminators joined by either a Centurion or the Praetor?  Nothing subtle, just rolling across the table to smash things.

But, overall?  I have to say I am liking the Armored Spearhead concept…  Just having a harder time actually fitting in all that I want into the 1850 lists J…  Running multiple Land Raiders is fun, and sometimes even works J…  It IS a surprise for a lot of folks who have not seen them used in a very long time due to the Melta overload in the last edition…  But having a bunch of them immune to Melta rolling across the table?  Not bad I think…  Still need a better way to deal with fliers, but the TL Las Cannons are actually not doing badly for me at the moment.

Guessing I will look at the Siege Breaker again at some point as I am thinking that Artillery might be nice and granting Tank Hunter to a Squad all armed with say, Missile Launchers or the like might be amusing…  And to upgrade the “whole Squad” to Flak missiles is 50 points…  Tank Hunting Flak missiles might be a good “Sky Sweeper” option for me.  340 points for 10 ML seems a bit high, but Interceptor against Deep Strikers means that the Sternguard suicide squad really just does not work well…  I do not know though, this seems a LOT of points given I will likely have to hide them in a Ruin/Bastion or buy them a Rhino.  Might look at the smaller squad in a Bastion?  And/or do I field the Mortis class DN?  The Mortis with the TL Las Cannon the other DA player locally fields seems like it does well, and the Interceptor NOT being limited means that at the least it can put two Las Cannon shots into a lot of things just showing up on the field.  And I have been looking at fielding a Whirlwind Scorpius as Heavy Support…  If the Wolves or any 40K Marine force has access to it, it will likely be one of the longer term purchases for my lads…  Str 8 AP 3 Barrage blast, and if I stand still it is 1 + d3 shots…  THAT could be devastating against parking lots or massed blobs of Heavy Infantry…  Well, NOT Terminator armor, but who plays massed Terminators.  Well, besides me J

REALLY liking the Siege Breachers Infantry I am putting together...  Will need to trade for more of the "Night Hunter" Wolves decals...  They come something like 10 on the "Wolves" sheet, so I'll have plenty of other ones to give away...

Monday, November 11, 2013

"Pride of the Legion" for this week...

Trying Legion again…  Sticking with my Wolves as VI Legion, and using “Pride of the Legion”…  The disadvantages of “No Allies” and “Lose and extra point if you lose ALL of your Vet/Terminator Squads”…  Eh, if I have lost all of my Troops, I have likely lost big in any case, so nothing for me to be concerned about.  No Allies?  Mkay, I have none in any case in a 30K Environment until I get a specific Legion list and that is a few books down the road.  So, I get to count my Terminators which are scoring in any case but to count them as Troops…  The Veteran Squad getting Sniper is pretty darn cool.  The Heavy Bolter with the suspensor web is another neat thing…  Yes, counting on Rending sucks, but the fact that I can start placing shots onto specific models and every shot is potentially rending…  Not entirely convinced that this is a winning Squad, but it is fun to play.  EXPENSIVE to field, but they should do a fair amount of damage on the table.

So, looking to field:
1850 Legion 11850 Pts  -   ~ Horus Heresy (THH1) Army

1 Legion Praetor (HQ) @ 155 Pts
     Independent Character; Legiones Astartes; Master of the Legion; Rite of
     War: Pride of the Legion; #Cataphractii TDA; Combi-Bolter; Paragon Blade;

1 Forge Lord (Legion Centurion) (HQ) @ 105 Pts
     Independent Character; Legiones Astartes; Consul; Battlesmith; #Frag
     Grenades; #Krak Grenades; #Artificer Armour; Rad Grenades; Bolt Pistol
     (x1); Charnabal Sabre; Servo-arm

4 Legion Terminator Squad (Troops) @ 485 Pts
     Legiones Astartes; Implacable Advance; Prototype Weaponry; #Cataphractii
     TDA; Chainfist (x1); Lightning Claws (x2) (x1); Power Weapon (x2);
     Combi-Bolter (x2); Reaper Autocannon (x1)

     1 Legion Terminator Sergeant @ [55] Pts
          #Cataphractii TDA; Combi-Bolter; Power Weapon (x1)

     1 Legion Phobos @ [270] Pts
          Vehicle (Tank); Capacity: 10; Access Points: 3; Assault Vehicle;
          #Searchlight; #Smoke Launchers; #Machine Spirit; Armoured Ceremite;
          TL Lascannon Sponsons (x2)

9 Legion Veteran Tactical Squad (Troops) @ 270 Pts
     Legiones Astartes; Veteran Tactics; Power Armour; Chainsword (x8); Bolt
     Pistol (x9); Bolter (x7); Heavy Bolter w/Suspensor Web (x2); Power Weapon
     (x1); Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades

     1 Legion Veteran Sergeant @ [85] Pts
          (character); Artificer Armour; Bolt Pistol; Power Weapon (x1); Bolter

19 Legion Breacher Siege Squad (Troops) @ 395 Pts
     Legiones Astartes; Hardened Armour; #Boarding Shield; Power Armour; Bolt
     Pistol (x19); Bolter (x15); Flamer (x2); Graviton Gun (x2); Frag Grenades;
     Krak Grenades

     1 Legion Sergeant @ [155] Pts
          (character); #Boarding Shield; Artificer Armour; Bolter; Power Weapon

1 Legion Apothecary (Elites) @ 125 Pts
     (character); Legiones Astartes; #Narthecium; Augury Scanner; Artificer
     Armour; Bolt Pistol; Power Sword; Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades

     1 Legion Apothecary #1 @ [55] Pts
          (character); Legiones Astartes; #Narthecium; Artificer Armour;
          Chainsword; Bolt Pistol; Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades

1 Legion Spartan Assault Tank (Heavy Support) @ 315 Pts
     Vehicle (Tank); Capacity: 25; Access Points: 3; Assault Vehicle; #Machine
     Spirit; #Extra Armour; #Searchlight; #Smoke Launchers; Armoured Ceremite;
     TL Heavy Bolters; Quad Lascannon Sponsons (x2)

Models in Army: 41

Total Army Cost: 1850

So, another REALLY simple force…  Essentially, the Spartan loaded up with the Breachers, the Praetor, the Forge Lord and a Medic to give them all FnP.  Immune to Melta, roll forward and hopefully take an objective.  The second Raider runs as “security” or as a “wingman” to the primary force…  Break off if needed, but looking at the Tau/Eldar MC builds.  6 TL Las Cannon to fire each turn, the Vets with Sniper sitting back and camping an Objective.  With the FAQ allowing Cataphractii Terminator armor NOT preventing a squad from funning down someone beaten in HtH…  Yes, the Breachers are REALLY unlikely to ever do this with the complete lack of HtH ability and -1” on the attempt….  But still J…  Initiative 5 with the Praetor/Forge Lord and the number of CC monsters “hidden” in the giant Squad makes for a very real threat…  Loads of weird special rules like Rad Grenades, Defensive Grenades, etc…  But in general, we roll up and shoot…  A LOT.  Hope for the best and hope that you simply outlast the other side… 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Plasma Everywhere? And the 30K/40K interactions...

So, started the post on my tablet running the mobile Blogger app....  Have to say that was a failure.  No automatic saving of what you are typing, and flipping between apps on the device apparently does at some random point simply erase everything you have typed...  Lesson learned.  Blogging from the mobile device is emergency only, and the web site itself does not work on Chrome , so...  Woo Hoo!  Guess Google is behind on their own standards :-)  ah well...

So, after playing a fair number of games with the Heresy era Legion...  The one thing I am looking at changing is to bring a Tactical Support Squad loaded out with Plasma guns.  Yes, a 15 point upgrade per Trooper, but...  It is a Plasma Gun, so Str 7, AP 2 and likely 2 shots each at 12" range?  Yes, I will take some casualties from my own weapons, but the Medic (Apothecary) for the FnP roll should help...  And provide another 2+ save body to help for the inevitable HtH...

Thus far, I have been running EVERY SGT...  OK, EVERY body I can get into Artificer Armor in that armor.  The big squads with 2-4 of them in the Squad make for an annoyingly difficult thing to take off the table.  Power Weapons where I can as well.  Finding that there is a LOT more HtH when everyone is fielding Marines and thus not a lot of weapons that efficiently deal with 3+ armor.  Challenges, massed attacks, etc. are all pretty important, but the simple ability to deny an Armor save is the thing that is winning more combats for my lads in the 6th...

Which leads to another sort of observation...  The Legions are REALLY well focused on dealing with Xenos.  Well, 5+ armor and to a great extent 4+ and worse really...  Things like the Volkite weapons are BRUTAL against IG, Tyranid or Eldar swarm type armies, but mostly an afterthought against 3+ bodies.  Yes, eventually they cause a few casualties, but so often I have a 10 man Tactical Support Squad (TSS) open up on a group of Marines in the open and...  Do effectively nothing, maybe get 1-3 casualties out of the massed Volkite fire.  One reason I am looking at swapping for Plasma.  At least with the Plasma I get some casualties and take out a big chunk of most squads that are trying to assault my position.  And I can overload with things like the Havoc Launchers for a lot of Str 5 AP 5 blast markers...  Yes, I intend to build a few to put on my Rhino Hulls (magnetized)...  Something about having 30+ Rhino Hulls, repainting a bunch of them in the old Wolves Legion colors is not going to have ANY impact on my other Marine armies.  But again, AP 5, so unlikely to actually DO much against my primary Heresy Era enemies...

Think that is probably the biggest issue I have with the Legion lists.  Everything is so focused, nothing is really a generalist or "Swiss Army Knife".  Tactical Squads are just Bolters, no Heavy/Special weapons at all.  The Heavy and Support Squads are all armed with the same weapons, so all Volkite Calvers, Plasma Guns, Missile Launchers or whatever...  On one level, that makes it simple and if you KNOW what you are facing, you can build a specific counter.  But I MUCH prefer a more generalist approach.  My Grey Hunter squads in 40K have a little of everything.  Rifle, Pistol, Sword, a Flamer or Melta in the Squad, likely a Power Weapon and/or a hidden Werewolf to multiply their HtH presence and riding in a Razorback for Heavy Weapon support.  So, the small squad has the ability to move independently, support others like themselves and actually DO a fair amount of damage on the field...  Yes, far less resilient than the giant 20 man squads, but standing off and firing the Las Cannon/Plasma into them, the new Wolves will cause a few casualties without any possibility of taking any until the Legion gets into Assault range or has something else deal with the Razorback.  Having said all of that, I still believe that the 40K Tactical Squad is mostly useless except for it's ability to camp Objectives, and armies with other Scoring options are almost always doing better overall without the "tax" required to actually try to win some games based on the Missions themselves.  One reason I bring Scouts in my Crimson Fist lists, frankly they are simply cheaper scoring bodies that I can try to flank or otherwise hide to keep alive.  3+ armor is simply NOT enough these days to try and stay alive when other armies like the Eldar and Tau have so many weapons on their basic, common units that simply ignore your Armor and in a lot of cases any potential Cover saves you might have had....

And so, back to Rock-Paper-Scissors I guess...  Marines (40K) deal well enough with the 4 Tau Riptide if they build specifically for it, as do the Eldar with the same caveat.  Tau/Eldar are pretty much dominating the competitive scene otherwise...  And ironically, the 30K Heresy era things seem fairly well balanced against all of the above...  For the moment, with the breakneck speed of releases in 6th Edition these days, who knows what will happen when the Tyranids hit the field with a new book or the IG, or...  :-)  Whatever comes next frankly...

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

30K and 40K so far...

So...  Got in a fair number of 30k games now, and I have to say it is a refreshing change.  Balanced, fun and so far nothing too over the top.  Well, there are a few things that are close :-) ....  Spartan decked out is close, but mid 300 point range?  Neat, but almost never gets back its points on its own....  Transporting a giant unit of whatever across the table....  THAT wins games. 

Major downside of the 30k stuff I have seen is that everyone is a Marine.  So 3+ saves all over the place.  Things that ignore 3+ armor are rare and expensive.  Weight of fire works, but you have to be aware that sometimes you get 20 wounds on a squad and they do not lose a single model...  FnP all over the place, Artificer Armor for the 2+ in almost every squad for the SGTs...

Biggest down side to 40k locally at least is the broken FOC that the supplements and allies get you.  Playing one Army is actually a DISADVANTAGE now that it is legal to field armies allied with themselves for the extra slots...  4 Riptides or 4 Heldrakes is just silly.  Legal, and playable of course but...  So, I have to have my Centurion Devastator squads ready as the hard counter I think...  For the Riptides or Eldar Wraith Knights...  Just not liking the extreme"rock - paper - scissors" feel the game has devolved into.  I have a good Marine army, just gets kind of boring playing that way.  Fielding my VI Legion Wolves, and having fun...  NOT winning all the time, but I think both players enjoy the game this way.

Not sure how I feel about the "rumored" expansions coming...  Building rules and the ability to field "Lords of War" in 40k games.  So, more expensive books to a) fix rules that they failed to do right in the base game and b) giant, expensive kits that were never intended for this scale of the game...  If the fortification rules are free downloads publicly available that is one thing, but given who we are talking about?  Not holding my breath.  Right now, the Skyshield if played as written is stupidly broken, making the Eldar a no brainer to win most tournaments...  So, it is killing the game from a competitive standpoint...  And that in turn seems to be driving sales lower and attendance at our local store...  I am having a harder time getting the motivation to play in a tournament, or even keep playing 40k frankly.  REALLY like the Forge World models, just wish the Gopher carried them :-)   Picked up a few Cataphractii Terminator suits, amazing models.  Spartan is on the list for eventually pick up, even more if the bigger things hit the table in general.  Slowly getting more, but...  Just hoping the game itself continues...

Monday, November 4, 2013

2000 point Heresy game this week...

Bringing my VI Legion (Wolves) out to play again against Word Bearers I think...  I am fielding the following:

2000 Legion 12000 Pts  -   ~ Horus Heresy (THH1) Army

1 Legion Praetor (HQ) @ 155 Pts
     Independent Character; Legiones Astartes; Master of the Legion; #Artificer
     Armour; #Frag Grenades; #Krak Grenades; Refractor Field; Rite of War:
     Pride of the Legion; Archaeotech Pistol; Paragon Blade; Warlord

1 Forge Lord (Legion Centurion) (HQ) @ 130 Pts
     Independent Character; Legiones Astartes; Consul; Battlesmith; #Frag
     Grenades; #Krak Grenades; #Artificer Armour; Rad Grenades; Refractor
     Field; Bolt Pistol (x1); Charnabal Sabre; Servo-arm; Graviton Gun

19 Legion Breacher Siege Squad (Troops) @ 395 Pts
     Legiones Astartes; Hardened Armour; #Boarding Shield; Power Armour; Bolt
     Pistol (x19); Bolter (x15); Flamer (x2); Graviton Gun (x2); Frag Grenades;
     Krak Grenades

     1 Legion Sergeant @ [155] Pts
          (character); #Boarding Shield; Artificer Armour; Bolter; Power Weapon

9 Legion Veteran Tactical Squad (Troops) @ 275 Pts
     Legiones Astartes; Veteran Tactics; Power Armour; Chainsword (x8); Bolt
     Pistol (x9); Bolter (x7); Heavy Bolter w/Suspensor Web (x1); Missile
     Launcher w/Susp. Web (x1); Power Weapon (x1); Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades

     1 Legion Veteran Sergeant @ [85] Pts
          (character); Artificer Armour; Bolt Pistol; Power Weapon (x1); Bolter

1 Legion Apothecary (Elites) @ 210 Pts
     (character); Legiones Astartes; #Narthecium; Augury Scanner; Artificer
     Armour; Bolt Pistol; Power Sword; Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades

     1 Legion Apothecary #1 @ [70] Pts
          (character); Legiones Astartes; #Narthecium; Augury Scanner;
          Artificer Armour; Bolt Pistol; Power Sword; Frag Grenades; Krak

     1 Legion Apothecary #2 @ [70] Pts
          (character); Legiones Astartes; #Narthecium; Augury Scanner;
          Artificer Armour; Bolt Pistol; Power Sword; Frag Grenades; Krak

4 Legion Terminator Squad (Troops) @ 460 Pts
     Legiones Astartes; Implacable Advance; Prototype Weaponry; #Cataphractii
     TDA; Power Weapon (x4); Combi-Bolter (x3); Reaper Autocannon (x1)

     1 Legion Terminator Sergeant @ [55] Pts
          #Cataphractii TDA; Combi-Bolter; Power Weapon (x1)

     1 Legion Phobos @ [270] Pts
          Vehicle (Tank); Capacity: 10; Access Points: 3; Assault Vehicle;
          #Searchlight; #Smoke Launchers; #Machine Spirit; Armoured Ceremite;
          TL Lascannon Sponsons (x2)

9 Legion Tactical Support Squad (Troops) @ 235 Pts
     Legiones Astartes; Support Squad; Power Armour; Bolt Pistol (x9); Volkite
     Caliver; Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades

     1 Legion Sergeant @ [55] Pts
          (character); Artificer Armour; Augury Scanner; Bolt Pistol;

1 Legion Artillery Tank Squadron (Legion Basilisk) (Heavy Support) @ 140 Pts
     Vehicle (Tank); #Searchlight; #Smoke Launchers; Earthshaker Cannon; Hull
     Heavy Bolter

Models in Army: 52

Total Army Cost: 2000

So, NOT bringing my Spartan of Doom...  That seems like a simple enough choice, and I know damn good and well that it works.  Let's see what the lads can do like this.  The Siege Squad joined by the Tech and Praetor seems like a pretty tough nut to crack, especially if I plant them in some sort of cover.  Have to admit the Conversion Beam on the Tech is VERY tempting in this setup, and could be easy enough to get if I feel it will work...  Seems one of the good ways to put down a Str 10 AP 1 blast to help deal with the Land Raiders being immune to Melta, or the big MCs...

The Basilisk is there to root out things hiding, and with it being a Str 9 AP 3 large blast Ord weapon...  Well, barring area terrain, I am hoping to see some large squads of Infantry in the open, or bomb them out of cover...  In a pinch I think it also has a decent chance against most Vehicles, even Land Raiders I guess...  Thinking it will be able to drop the template on the folks piling out of a Rhino the Volkites destroy...  You know, if things go the way I'd like them to...  We'll see I guess.  Not 100% sure it will be worth the 140 points for a BS 4 Basilisk, but...

Vets will either be Snipers of Flankers, depending on the setup...  Both Heavy Weapons have suspensors allowing them to fire on the move, and Sniper for the Unit is just brutal...

So, 4 "Troops" choices, 1 Heavy and 2 HQ elements...  A lot of Infantry, hoping that this does not bite me in the ass...  But a LOT of FnP for the lads...  We'll see if that works at all.  Since I know I will not face a Heldrake, I am less concerned...  Thinking that a Bastion and/or Mortis DN will become a standard piece of equipment for me going forward...

Friday, November 1, 2013

VI Legion, Wolves

So, going back to the old Wolves, or more correctly at this point the VI Legion.  I HAVE a bunch of stuff painted up in what was the original paint scheme for the Wolves, some of that fits in quite well with the current Forgeworld Heresy era stuff…  I am liking how the Cataphractii are coming together and the “new” color scheme is looking pretty good so far.  Running a lot of just basic stuff at this point, the VI’s specific rules won’t be out for quite some time.  Still there is a LOT of “basic” stuff to use.

For instance, Veteran Squads have a number of rules they choose at the start of each game:
Fearless, Sniper, Furious Charge, Outflank, Tank Hunter

Choosing one, guessing I’ll be using Sniper or Outflank…  Not enough in the range of AT weapons to make the Bolters really effective.  Sniper gives me the ability to Wound on at worst a 4+ regardless of Toughness, Precision Shots and Rending on all shooting attacks…  Not seeing a downside, especially as this is likely my answer to the big MC type things out there.  Flank of course is just a pretty good thing all around for a bunch of the Lads…  As they’ll likely be Troops in my lists, being able to put them in my enemy’s back field seems like a good thing.

So, like I said the Cataphractii are coming along...

Happy how the test model is coming along...  5 assembled so far, ready for the next 5...  More Troops for the 6th...