Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Time of Legends Campaign - Part One

Overview: 6 week Warhammer Fantasy campaign set in an alternate universe from the Old World. Players start with a 750 point army and each week get 150-250 points of extra units depending on the results of the battle. Players also roll on the exploration chart each week to see if they find any magic items or other relics.

Background: There was a terrible time of turmoil and war that apocalyptically shattered their magnificent crystal cities, which were split into thousands of shards that scattered across the lands. Without the wisdom and the abilities of the Hiasars these shards corrupted the surrounding landscape and blighted most of the idyllic lands. On the fringe of this blighted and broken landscape small settlements grew into fledgling nations. The different races adapted to their peripheral settlements and only ventured into the Broken Lands in the desperate attempt to find the much sought after crystal shards.

These shards can still harness the elemental powers of the Hiasars, though in a greatly diminished capacity. Going into the Broken Lands for any extended time warps and corrupts those that enter and now various tribes of foul beasts and monsters roam the lands preying on desperate shard miners. Besides the mining activities there is only one other time any of the races would dare enter the Blasted Lands and that is during the Time of Legends.

There remains an enduring generational prophecy across all of the races which foretells of the rebuilding of the Hiasars crystal city in the heart of the Blasted Lands. Every fifty years when the three moons align during the lunar eclipse, the crystal city is reformed awaiting a new master to sit upon its grand crystal throne. It is rumored that whoever sits upon the throne will be able to restore the Blaster Lands and reinstate control of the lands and thus rule the world. Every fifty years each nation has sent large armies into the Blasted Lands to try to find and fight their way to the heart of the mirage-like crystal city but none have succeeded. The nations have stopped sending one large army into the Lands for this quest and instead now hope that smaller strike forces have a better chance of reaching the crystal throne. There has also been a connecting ancient prophesy which states that it will not be a famous and well known general who finally sits on the crystal throne but an unknown who endures the trials and becomes a legend in the making...


With a little bit of poetic licence here is the first two battle reports...

Prince Morkin of the moon-kin looked out at the devastation. The cavalry thundering over the barrow had disturbed there centuries long rest. Then the cannon balls had blasted open the sacred chamber spilling his fathers bones across the green fields. Servants were still out looking for his leg.

Unable to stand the King looked up at his son. As their eyes met Morkin felt the projection of his fathers voice inside his head. These are troubled times when men do not show respect to their ancestors graves. Gather warriors and go seek vengeance for this attack. The shades say tracks lead into the broken lands. Take my enchanted helm with you.

750 Barrow Kings
114 Prince Morkin w/ Great Weapon, Dragonhelm
70 Liche Priest Rorthan
135 Casket of Souls
130 Archers x20 w/ Champion Longshot
66 Skeleton Warriors x14 w/ Champion Boney
235 Tomb Guard x15 w/ Champion Yohan, Standard, Banner of Undying

Week One: Battle vs Chaos Warriors

Sorcerer with 15 Chaos Warriors
40 Maurders with Great Weapons
15 Chaos Warriors
5 Dogs of war

Rorthan the Liche Priest looked at Morkin. They had spent ten days in the wastelands and their was still no sine of the defilers. He thought this was a worthless quest but he was bound by blood and magic to follow the Prince, to the ends of the earth if needed, enacting the Kings will.

Morkin finished talking with the shades and informed Rorthan of the approaching band of warriors. He formed the ranks of warriors up into a defensive formation and ordered the archers to shoot down the horde charging over the hill towards them. At the same time Rorthan focused the might of the ancient casket to blast bolts of lighting into the warriors on the right flank. He watched it arc from one unit to the next searing away flesh as it did so. In response the Sorcerer blasted away skeletons with arcane fire faster than Rorthan could reassemble them.

The archers unleashed four volleys of arrows into the Chaos horde before the two armies clashed. Leading his Warriors in a glorious charge the Sorcerer assaulted Morkin's unit. A blast of arcane power burnt away one of Morkin's eyes. As he staggard backwards Yoric stepped up and decapitated the Sorcerer. Seeing their leader dead the warriors turned to run but were cut down by the Tomb Guard.

Rorthan and his archers were not so lucky as they were ground down by the other unit of Warriors. The dogs of war ripped apart the casket crew and then, together with the last few Maurders, charged at Morkin; where they died to the striking blades of the Tomb Guard. Having taken the measure of each other the last few warriors of Chaos gathered their wounded and retreated leaving Morkin the victor.

It took Rorthan some time after the battle to reassemble himself and the rest of the moon-kin. While he waited Morkin ordered his guard to cut down the trees and assemble catapults. Once this was all done Rorthan drained the power from the sorcerers charms infusing it into himself and used rituals of binding to place some of the loyal shades inside the lifeless husks of the enemy so that they could once more walk the lands.

Additions: 2x Catapults, 2 Warriors, 2 Tomb Guard, Musian for Archers. Lvl 2 Wizard.
Morkin gained Regeneration, -BS. Yohan +WS


Week Two: Battle vs Vampire Counts
Vampire leading 20 Ghouls
20 Revenants
3 Wraiths

Morkin's empty eye socket still ached from the magical wound that would not regenerate. The dying minstral his scouts had picked up told him how a vampire had attacked his caravan and he was the only one to get away. The vile vampire was using his arcane might to bind the dead into his eternal service. This was the perfect opportunity to try out the new catapults on an ancient enemy.

Channelling the mighty power of the casket Rorthan blasted the wraiths off the material plane while the catapuls smashed ghouls and revenants to dust. The Vampire used his powers to summon more ghouls while the catapults turned their attention to the Varghulf. The mighty creature lithely dodged the giant flaming stones that rained down around it. Stumbling forward across the rough ground the Varghulf eventually managed to rip the skeletal warriors and a catapult apart. The vampire lead his ghouls into a mighty charge destroying the casket and then tirning to face off against Morkin and his guards. Rorthan was charged by the last few revenants but a giant stone flew off target and crushed the last revenant leaving Rorthan and a few scattered archers alive.

As neither general wanted to risk more of there troops against the other both retreated to lick their wounds. Rorthan used his powers to pull the scattered bones of the defeated back together and bound the dead minstrels soul to his bones so he too could join the expedition.

Additions: Morkin +Att, Longshot +Att, Rowthan +W & Wizard Lvl 3.
Gained a Bard. Warriors x10, Tomb Guardx10

Mantic Undead, Undead 1 - WIP
Tactics: It was not my original intent but playing against two armies with no ranged attacks I ended up using my undead as a gun-line army. While my shooting was weak I was able to do enough damage to approaching units to then actually win some combats! I did forget though that the casket explodes when it dies. I was quite lucky with the entire Vampire army failing charges for a couple of turns.

Image Credits: Wenzel Hablik, Wonder of the Sea, 1917

Sunday, 24 July 2011

More Metrics (for Tyranids)

Well it has been a busy month for me. I failed my Uni course and spent a lot of time getting a job sorted. The good news is I have got one sorted and it starts next month. So I have few loose ends to tidy up before I start; one of which was doing the metrics for Kirby's Tyranid army...

Kirby's 2k Tyranids
2x Prime w/LW, Bonesword, Toxin, Regen
2x3 Hive Guard
1x3 Zoanthrope
2x Tervgion w/Catalyst, Toxin, Adrenal, Cluster, Scything Talons
2x10 Termagant
2x4 Ravener w/Rending
2x T-Fex w/Rupture, Cluster, Dess

Now Purgatus pointed out that working out dead Land Raiders with a 4+ to hit in melee was a bit misleading since they will always go fast to avoid melee damage. As such I have redone all the numbers for AV 14. APC's on the other hand will often stick at 6" movement since they still want to fire guns so I have left those numbers unchanged.

So lets look at all the previous five lists again and add Kirby's too.
List. DMS .. DMCC .. DR pG .. DLR pG .

For wrecking Land Raiders a pair of Carnifex (with 6.02) are just ahead of two T-fex (with 5.19) in raw numbers but the T-fex has the advantage of being able to shoot as well as rip them apart with teeth and claws. What is very noticeable is how much of a difference Zoantrhopes now make to the DLRpG score. I could ramble on but I do not think their is a lot more to say. If we use these six as the guide for offensive metrics our golden ratio for a 2k army would be - Shooting 19+; Melee 47+; APC's 100+; Raiders 10+

Is this achievable? I am not sure but I will let you know if I find one..

Saturday, 9 July 2011

Mantic Open Day 2011

Salutations everyone,

Today was Mantic's second open day. We got into Mantic Towers just after ten o'clock and were greeted by Chris, Ronnie and the rest of the gang. There were a variety of events happening including a tour of the warehouse (where Ronnie showed us the content of the secret room); a massive eight player King of War game; painting competition; demo games and of course the shop! We were not allowed to take photos of the new stuff but here are the shots I did get during the day...

I love the Dark Elf, if only I could paint this good...
Ronnie said during the tour that they are shipping out 60,000 figures a week at the moment. The next edition of Kings of War rules will have three new races - Human, Goblins and Twilight Kin (Dark Elves). They are also looking into the cost of remaking the byssal Dwarf in plastic to see if it is feasible.

Orky was guarding the secret room. Inside were the first moulds of the Forgefarther Space Dwarfs which Golum Studios are going to be painting in a nice blue colour (with a possible yellow trim) and concept sketches for the vehicles (one for each race). Forgefarthers get a quad barrels gun platform and the Pirates get a dune buggy. The painters were also kind enough to give me some painting tips so maybe next year I will have a model to enter in the competition. Overall I had a great time. I got to play a couple of more games of KoW (during which there were several comparisons to another well known fantasy game) as well as pick up a few more figures for my army.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

40k Metrics - Tyranid Fex-star

Carrying on with looking at the 40k Metrics of different Tyranid lists this time we will analyses a couple of Fex-star builds. Lists and full numbers are below. For those adding up at home remember that the Genestealers melee damage against APC's is capped at 15. Carnifex scores have not been capped as some of it is from shooting.

Two Fexstar's and Purgatus' T-fex/Prime Nidzilla comparison
List. DMS .. DMCC .. DR pG .. DLR pG .

The Addition of the Zoantrhopes really helps to boost MEQ Shooting and Raider killing power but the list loses significant close combat potential. That said at over 40 it is still an amazing high figure contending with the Orks. Carnifex give us a much better Land Raider killing score than T-fex but are limited to only doing do in melee which means they will most likely have delivered their cargo.

Working from just these numbers I would be tempted to replace the Raveners with Zoanthropes in Hulksmash's army and use the last few points for upgrading the primes to give us -

.. DMS .. DMCC .. DR pG .. DLR pG .

My thoughts on Ghostin's list would be to drop one Biovore and probably the Broodlord to get the second prime. That way you can play the Carnifex as two broods for better treat saturation and they each get easy cover saves due to the Primes. I like the idea of Bioplasma I am just not sure how effective it is actually going to be?

Hulksmash's Fexstar @2000 Points
200 - Prime w/ Dual Boneswords, Toxin Sacs 2x1
300 - Hive Guard 3x2
390 - Tervigon w/ Adrenals, Toxins, Catalyst, Clusters 2x1
100 - Termagants 2 x10
420 - Genestealers 2x15
210 - Raveners x6 Rending Claws
190 - Carnifex Quad Twin-Linked Devourers
190 - Carnifex Quad Twin-Linked Devourers
14 Kill Points: 50 Bugs, 14 Large Bugs, 4 Monsters

Unit. DMS .. DMCC .. DR pG .. DLR pG .
Prime x20.6754.170
Hive Guard x62.222200
Tervigon x22.223.3316.675.56
Spawn x453.7511.2500
Gaunts x100.832.500
Gaunts x100.832.500
Genestealers x30016.6737.50
Raveners x6 RC05.5614.580
Carnifex x254.174018.06

Ghostin's proposed NOVA list @1999 Points
100 - Prime Regen, Twin Boneswords
300 - Hive Guard 2x3
180 - zoanthropes x3
420 - Tervigon x2 - cat, onslaught, tox, ag, cluster
100 - Devilgaunts x10
050 - termagants x10
284 - genestealers x14 w/ Toxic sacs, Broodlord
135 - biovore x3
430 - carnifex x2 - TL devs/brainleech, bioplasma, frag spines
11 Kill Points: 33 Bugs, 14 Large Bugs, 4 Monsters
Unit. DMS .. DMCC .. DR pG .. DLR pG .
Prime x10.332.222.080
Hive Guard x62.222200
Zoanthropes x35.50.57.646.11
Tervigon x22.223.3316.115.56
Spawn x453.7511.2500
Dev-Gaunts x102.52.500
Gaunts x100.832.500
Stealers x13011.816.250
biovore x31.670.500
Carnifex x27.54.174018.06

Prime, Lashwhip/Bonesword, Regeneration, Rending Claws
Prime, Lashwhip/Bonesword, Regeneration, Scything Talons
Hive Guard x 2x2
Zoanthrope x 2
Tervigon, Catalyst, Onslaught, Adrenals, Toxins, Scything Talons, Cluster Spines 2x1
Termagants 2 x 10
Genestealers 2x 12, Toxins
Tyrannofex, Rupture Cannon, Dessicator, Cluster Spines 2x1

Unit. DMS .. DMCC .. DR pG .. DLR pG .
Rending Prime01.672.080
Sything Prime01.942.430
Hive Guard x41.481.3313.330
Zoanthropes x23.670.335.094.07
Tervigon x22.223.3316.675.56
Spawn x453.7511.2500
Gaunts x201.67500
Tox-stealers x24020300
t-Fex RC/DL x253.33258.89

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

40k Metrics - Tyranid Edition

Nikephoros over on Bringer of Victory has posted up about 40k Metrics. His idea was to work out sum statistics for the whole army and see how that compared to other competitive armies. There were four scores he has been working out -

DMS - Dead Marines in one shooting phase.
DMCC - Dead Marines in one assault phase (assuming you charge)
DRpG - Penetrating hits on Rhinos in five turns of shooting.
DLRpG - Penetrating hits on Land Raiders in five turns of shooting.
Those armies he looked at got scores in the following ranges.
DMS = 19-22, DMCC 15-45, DRpG 60-82, DLRpG 17-34.

As Kirby suggested I have added in the average Spawn of the Tervigon which does help to bolster the MEQ killing of the lists. Since we are generating numbers assuming best possible conditions all Gaunts are assumed to have Poison and Furious Charge from mummy.

So lets see how the Tyranids compare...
Unit. DMS .. DMCC .. DR pG .. DLR pG .
Tyrant 2.53.717.923.47
Guard x303.5650
Hive Guard x62.222200
Tervigon x22.223.3316.675.56
Spawn x453.7511.2500
Stealers 2x508.338.330
T-Fex x24.563.33258.89
Weak at shooting Marines (no surprise there). We only just outstrip the Space Wolves in melee and fall woefully short of the Orks score of 45 MEQ in a turn. The one surprising feature is the ability to kill APC's and a score matching the Wolves on killing Raiders. So both the numbers and experience show we can get them out of their tin cans and eat them in combat.
EDIT: Adding the Spawn has taken our MEQ killing (shooting and melee) score up to almost the same level as Dashofpepper's Ork list.

I used Jay Woodcock's Adepticon 2011 list and to take it up to a 2k list for comparison added more Genestealers; Toxic Sacs to one brood & Gargoyles; Talons to the second Tervigon.
Unit. DMS .. DMCC .. DR pG .. DLR pG .
Tervigon x22.223.3322.217.4
Spawn x453.7511.2500
Hive Guard x62.222200
Stealers x40022.22300
Tox-stealers x20016.67150
Gargoyes x252.087.7800
Well we finally get a good score for Melee and our shooting does not suffer much thanks to the Zoanthropes having AP 3. The list is still good at killing APC's but really suffers against Raiders (especially once Psy-hoods come into play) with only two units that can penetrate them. Hive Guard do have a chance of immobilising Raiders, but it is still not great.

Tyranid Fex-star Analysis here.

Ultramarine Battle Reports

I have spent the last week painting up the tanks I got off ebay over the last year. They are now all a uniform Ultramarine blue. Next I need to add some detail. Doing so made me want to play my marines again since they had not been out of the box for almost two years. Here is My helper setting up terrain before she goes off to bed and a couple of quick battle reports to keep you entertained.

Game 1: 1500 points Ultramarines vs Space Wolves
Dawn of War, Seize Ground

objectives: Eldar Graveyard (NW)), Webway Dialer (SW), 2 Power relays (NE & SE)
In am attempt to get his enemy to turn on each other Vect has leaked the location of an Elder Webway portal to two Space Marine companies. He had also told them a band of renegade marines were looting the area. This resulted in both armies sending an armoured company to secure the location. With the rain lashing down around them in the darkness both forces opened fire, in typical marine fashion, as soon as they saw the lights of the opposing vehicles...

Space Wolves (not all gear listed)
Rune Priest Penda leading 8 Grey Hunters & Wolf Guard w/ Fist in Rhino
Rune Priest Ozur & Wolf Priest Tola leading 9 Grey Hunters & Wolf Guard w/ Fist in Land Raider Crusader
Five Long Fangs in Lazerback
Dreadnought Vandrad
Land speeder w/ HF, MM

Librarian Bolland (Avenger & Null Zone) leading ASM x5 with Flamer in Rhino
Armitage & Steel Rifleman Dreadnaughts
Dreadnaught Dante with Plasma Cannon, Heavy Flamer
Tactical Squad Alpha - Melta, MM, Rhino
Tactical Squad Beta - Flamer, Missile, Rhino
2 Squadrons x1 MM/HF Landspeeder
AutoLas Predator x3

Rune Priest Penda drove his APC into the graveyard and it sunk into the soft mud unable to move further. The Fangs zoomed forward to get a good firing position but an accurate burst of laser fire from the Ultramarines exploded the Razorback and killed four of the fangs. Trooper Sven grabbed the Lazer-cannon from the wreckage and hoisting it to his shoulder detonated Dante's power pack and arced the beam across the enemy APC's ripping the tracking from two of them. Bolland lead his troops forward and charged into Penda depleted force and the two units wiped each other out leaving the graveyard full of bones.

Driving around the eastern side of the central ruins the Land raider came under attack from the landspeeders buts was saved by its smoke. Return fire ripped the guns off the speeders and Vandrad stomped over and crushed one when it tried to roast him with its flamer. Laser fire glancing off its armoured hull the raider rolled forward with Ozur leading his forced forward to wipe out Alpha squad and Beta-gravis. The raider fired its guns at Beta-pugnus but could not dislodge the troops who were huddled around the webway dialler. Armitage charged into Ozurs troops keeping them occupied.

Aftermath: It was a fun game but quite static with the Wolves holding back until they had blasted away the melta's and my APC's getting immobilised quickly (one by terrain). I had five turns of 6 lasers shooting the Raider and all I got was one stun and an immobilised turn six! We played the extra turn at the end to see if the Wolves could kill the last 3 tacical marines on the objective but they did not have enough firepower with only the raider and Dread.

Game 2: 1500 Points Ultramarines vs Grey Knights
Pitched Battle Annihilation

I try not to proxy too much stuff but as I had to take all my folders into University for moderation I wanted an army that I could carry around easily and 27 terminators fit that bill very well. Despite being annihilation the Ultramarines used combat squads to get best use of the heavy weapons and set up in as a static gun-line ready to receive the Knights charge. Going second I put all the Knights into the SW corner behind a hill blocking line of sight from most of the marines.

Ultramarines (11 Kill Points due to Combat Squads)
Chaplain Caecilius with Jump Pack, Melta Bombs
Purpureus Tactical Squad with Melta, Lascannon & power-gauntlet
Albus Tactical Squad with Melta, Plasma Cannon & power-gauntlet in a Rhino
Plumbeus Devastator Squad with 4 Missile Launchers in Razorback with TL Lascannon
Tripudio 5 man Assault Squad with Power-gauntlet and Plasma Pistol.
Tempestas Terminator Squad with assault cannon & CML
Brother Grumio Dreadnought
Grey Knights (5 Kill Points)
Librarian with Shrouding, Sanctuary, Might
Inquisitor with TDA, Psycannon and Hammer
2x10 Tactical Terminators with 2 Cannons and mixed weapons
1x5 Paladins with 2 Cannons and mixed weapons

The Librarian lead his Squad into the ruins at the top of the hill and between Terminator armour and shrouding only three of them died (all in turn two). After wiping out Tripudio on the first turn they spent four turns exchanging fire with the Terminators killing nine of them.

The Paladins hugged the ridge of the hill for cover as they advanced before charging forward to crush marines and the Razorback in melee. The Inquisitor split off and wrecked the Rhino. They only took a single wound all game but I was constantly worried every time they got shot by a melta or laser.

The second unit of Terminator Knights did very little due to my target denial strategy. They lost one man to a scattering plasma cannon and killed the Chaplin and Dreadnought. This left the Ultramarine with 15 Marines and 1 Terminator at the end of turn five.

Losing four Knights in the second turn made me worried I would be torrented to death. However I only failed one more save in the next three turns making the final score 7-0 to the Knights. I liked playing the army but it would have been a lot harder with objectives since I barely moved any of the units forward.

Thursday, 16 June 2011

21: Tales of a Splinter Fleet

Game 21: 2000 Points vs Horde Orks
Scenario - Seize Ground (Five objectives), Spearhead deployment

So I am busy wrapping up pass the parcels and making party bags for my daughters third birthday so just a quick battle report about my monday night game against Horde Orks. I played a full drop pod army again so nothing arrive until the bottom of turn two.

Tyranid Air Assault
Hive Tyrant (Old Adversary, Hive Commander, Wings, TL Devs x2)
Zoanthropes x2 in Spore Pod w/ TL Deathspitter
Zoanthropes x2 in Spore Pod w/ TL Deathspitter
Termagants w/ Devourers x20 in Spore Pod w/ TL Deathspitter
Mummy Tervigon (Toxic,Adreanl,Catalysis) [Outflanking]
Broodlord (Toxic) & 6 Genestealers w/ Toxic
Gargoyle Brood x15 w /AG,TS
Carnifex with TL Devs x2, in Spore Pod with TL Deathspitter
Carnifex with TL Devs x2, in Spore Pod with TL Deathspitter

Horde Orks
Ghazghkull Thraka
Big Mek with Kustom Force Field
Da Shoota Boys 3x30
Da Slugga Boys 2x20
Da Grots
Da Stormboys
Da Lootas
Stompy Death Robots (Killa Kans) 3x3

I knew with six troops against my three and five objectives this was going to be difficult...

Battlefield: There is a central building and ruins in each corner with some scatter craters between them. Objectives are the central building, NE, NW & SW Ruins and a NW crater. Orks win the roll off and take the NW quarter to get two objectives in there starting zone. 140 Boys spread out behind a wall of 9 Stompy Death Robots and push east and south filling the table so there is no space for my pods to drop.

Turn Two:
Hive Tyrant swoops in from reserves charging into Stompy Death Robots and manages to stun all three of them! Zoanthropes drop in an crispy fry three Robots; Fex drop in and shoot. Gargoyles dive from the sky charge into a wounded boyz squad and promptly all die. Genestealers charge into Boyz kill half of them but only the Broodlord lives. I really underestimated the damage a few Orks with a Power Klaw will cause...

Turn Three:
Da Lootas shoot up a Spore, Yeah! Boyz and Stormboys assault the Zoanthropes (one unit dies). Broodlord sweeps the Boyz and moves on to the next unit. Mummy arrived and hides behind the SW ruin ready to spew forth babies. The First fex charges into combat with the Stormboys and the second attacks the Stompy Death Robots and crushes them. Devilgaunts arrive and shoot some boyz.

Turn Four:
The one remaining Stompy Death Robot (with no arms) charges the Devilgaunts and they can not do anything about it! Hive Tyrant finally manages to kill the third robot having been constantly stunning them but is assaulted by Boyz and dies at the end of the turn. Ghazghkull and is boyz Warg for a 15" charge into Mummy and cuts her head off (I forgot to roll my FNP saves too! Sob!).

Turn Five:
Carnifex Dies; Stormboyz die; Devilgaunts die; Broodlord dies. Da Grots claim an objective. Deathleaper contests an objective and ...

Turn Six:
... Ghazghkull kills him. More Spores get shot up.

Aftermath: Win for the Orks with two objectives to zero; all I have left is two Spore Pods! There is still ~50 Boyz, Da Lootas, one Stompy Death Robot and both Ork HQ. I was completely out played by a better swarm army.

I am so used to fighting 5-10 man Marines that I forgot what damage Boyz can put out even when reduced in number. I also could not deal with Claws that were ripping through my monsters with 2 wounds a turn. This was a game where I really needed the cluster spines to kill large numbers of Boyz. I am glad I tried out pod-fex; The conclusion though is - never again. They are louse in melee and the one turn of shooting does not make up for it. I will proxy them up as Trygons for another game as some point and see if they fair any better. Deathleaper was there for Psi protection (worthless against Orks). He was fun for contesting an objective but not as useful as the Ymgarls would have been.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Tyranid Army Lists

Discussing Tyranids elsewhere I wanted to post a link to Jay Woodcock Adepticon list to show that you could do well with something other than Nidzilla. I then spent ten minutes trying to find it! Given that there were also a few other recent army ideas I wanted to be able to come back too I thought I would put them all in one place for reference.

Tyranid armies fall into three flavours so I shall look at each in turn.

Nidzilla - It is all about taking as many Monsters and Toughness 6 as you can fit in. Lists are build around 6-9 Hive Guard; 2 Tervigons and required Gaunts to make them score; Either a pair of Tyrannofex or 3 Trygons and some Venomthropes. It does not leave a lot of points for anything else.

Swarm - The goal here is to have one hundred little bugs swarm the opponent and overwhelm them with more models than they can destroy. A couple of monsters are often included to give some support. Usually based around Genestealers but Gargoyles, Raveners and Hormagaunts work too.

Air Assault - Everything starts in reserves and arrives via deep strike or outflanking. Army is lead by a Hive Tyrant with Hive Commander for the reserve bonus. Not as good as it was since the FAQ stopped Hive Commander stacking for a +2 reserve bonus but still a playable army.

First off I would like to give a shout out to my friend Steve Deare who took his Tyranids to the UK Students Nationals 2011 over Easter and finished joint sixth out of 40 players (3 wins, 2 draws) with the following list -

Nidzilla @1500 - UK Student Nationals 2011 6th Place
100 - Prime w/ Boneswords, regen
110 - venomthrops x2 [prime attached for wound allocation]
200 - Hive Guard 2 Broods x2
390 - Tevigon w/ AG,TS, Catalyst x2
100 - Gaunts 2 Broods x10
600 - Trygons x3
11 Kill Points: 20 Bugs, 7 Large Bugs, 5 Monsters

A lot of armies are using T-fex for heavy support since a strength ten cannon can crack any egg in the game. When supported by Old Adversary for re-rolls they are not too bad in combat. They also have a breath weapon with Rending which helps with killing all those Feel no Paint Marines that are cropping up.

Nidzilla @2k
265 - Hive Tyrant w/ Quad Devourers, Armoured Shell, Old Adversary
195 - Tyrant Guard w/ Whips x3
300 - Hive Guard 3 Broods x2
390 - Tervigon w/ Adrenals, Toxins, Catalyst, Clusters 2x1
100 - Termagant Brood w/ Devourer x10
050 - Termagant Brood x10
170 - Genestelaers w/ Toxic 2x5
265 - Tyrannofex w/ Rupture Cannon, Cluster Spines, Thorax Swarm (Beatles)
265 - Tyrannofex w/ Rupture Cannon, Cluster Spines, Thorax Swarm (Beatles)
13 Kill Points: 30 Bugs, 9 Large Bugs, 5 Monsters

Since they cost the same you could also ditched the Tyrant + Guard in favour of a third T-fex and third Tervigon. - http://yesthetruthhurts.com/2011/05/evolution-steleks-tyranids/

hyv3mynd has gone for making the second Tervigon HQ and dropping a T-fex to get the points for two large broods of Genestealers. - http://synaps3.blogspot.com/2011/05/atc-game-1.html

The Fexstar involves putting Tyranid Primes with Carnifex to abuse wound allocation and cover rules. Hulksmash posted up the following 2k list http://hulksmash-homeplace.blogspot.com/2011/05/2k-tyranids-for-kon.html

Fexstar @2000 Points
200 - Prime w/ Dual Boneswords, Toxin Sacs 2x1
300 - Hive Guard 3x2
390 - Tervigon w/ Adrenals, Toxins, Catalyst, Clusters 2x1
100 - Termagants 2 x10
420 - Genestealers 2x15
210 - Raveners x6 Rending Claws
190 - Carnifex Quad Twin-Linked Devourers
190 - Carnifex Quad Twin-Linked Devourers
14 Kill Points: 50 Bugs, 14 Large Bugs, 4 Monsters

The swarmlord is the best melee unit Tyranids have thanks to actually having an Invulnerable save in melee and making opponents re-roll their own. He is a bit weak against missile spam thanks to only having a 3+ Armour save but that can be mitigated with cover saves.

Best overall posted a 2.5k Swarmlord List

Ghostin has posted up some Swarmlord lists -
I am not a fan of regeneration on the T-fex and like to see some Genestealers to really make use of Swarmies re-roll to outflank so my variation is the following.

Swarmlord @2k points
280 - Swarmlord
130 - Tyrant Guard w/ Whips x2
300 - Hive Guard 3x2
400 - Tervigon w/ Adrenals, Toxins, Catalyst, Clusters, Talons 2x1
100 - Termagant Brood 2 x10
140 - Genestealers 2x5
120 - Gargoyles x20
265 - Tyrannofex w/ Rupture Cannon, Cluster Spines, Thorax Swarm (Beatles)
265 - Tyrannofex w/ Rupture Cannon, Cluster Spines, Thorax Swarm (Beatles)
14 Kill Points: 50 Bugs, 8 Large Bugs, 5 Monsters

Swarm Armies
Jay Woodcock went 6-0-2 climbing all the way up to 4th out of 256 players in the Adepticon 40k Championships with a Stealershock list featuring 55 Genestealers.

Swarm @1847 Adepticon 2011
220 - Tevigon w/ adrenals, toxic sacs, catalyst, crushing claws
195 - Tervigon w/ adrenals, toxic sacs, catalyst
300 - Hive Guard 2 Broods x3
180 - Zoanthropes x3
560 - Genestealers 2 Broods x20
210 - Genestealers x15
182 - Gargoyles w/ adrenal glands x26
9 Kill Points: 81 Bugs, 9 Large Bugs, 2 Monsters

Hulksmask posted up a nice swarm list using the Parasite that does away with all the Inititive one units so that it more resistant to Jaws of the Wolf. If I ran the list I would boost the prime with regen (since it is so cheap).

Swarm @2000 Points
160 - HQ: Parasite
090 - HQ: Prime w/ Dual Bone Swords
450 - Hive Guard 3x3
120 - Hormagants x20
630 - Genestealers 3x15
350 - Raveners w/ Rending Claws 2 Broods x5
200 - Gargoyles w/ Toxic Sacs & Adrenal Glands x25
12 Kill Points: 90 Bugs, 21 Large Bugs.

Yermon posted a swarm army with a pair of Tervigon as the HQ similar to the Adepticon list. I just swapped the pod to have the Deathspitter as it is another anti-tank weapon.

Tyranid Swarm @2000 points
195 - Tervigon w/ Adrenals, Toxic sacs, Catalyst, Clusters
195 - Tervigon w/ Adrenals, Toxic sacs, Catalyst, Clusters
300 - Hive Guard 2 Broods x3
170 - Zoanthropes x2 in Spore Pod w/ Deathspitter
680 - Genestealers w/ Toxic sacs 2 Broods x20
140 - Genestealers 2 Broods x5
320 - Gargoyles w/ Adrenals, Toxic sacs 2x20
12 Kill Points: 90 Bugs, 8 Large Bugs, 2 Monsters

Air Assault
Not a very popular Tyranid build at the moment so I do not have any lists to link too.  I have decided that Gargoyles really need to have Adrenal glands so they can glance APC's and I am not really happy with a Hive Tyrant that costs over 300 points so thinking about replacing him with a walking tyrant with big gun.  Still this is my current list -

Tyranid Air Assault @1500 points
310 - Hive Tyrant w/ Old Adversary, Hive Commander, Wings, TL Devs x2
170 - Zoanthropes x2 in Spore Pod w/ TL Deathspitter
170 - Zoanthropes x2 in Spore Pod w/ TL Deathspitter
161 - Ymgarl Xenomorphs x7
250 - Termagants w/ Devourers x20 in Spore Pod w/ TL Deathspitter
195 - Tervigon: adrenals, toxic sacs, catalyst [Outflanking]
148 - Broodlord & 5 Genestealers w/ Toxic
096 - Gargoyle Brood x12 w /AG,TS
11 Kill Points: 44 Bugs, 5 Large Bugs, 2 Monsters, 3 Pods

Image Credits: Olovni, goofeegrins & Lord Hannu on Deviantart.

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Grey Knights vs Ultramarines

Game 1: 1500 Points vs Ultramarines
Scenario - Capture & Control (4 objectives), Spearhead deployment

With the new codex I can no longer add my two squads of Knights into my Ultramarine force. They have to be played as a faction in their own right. Only having 25 Knights I do not have enough Psycannons for a full army so I proxied them with missile launchers and power-gauntlets for the Hammers. I at least had some time this week to to start work on my Riflemen arms so the Dreads were correctly armed.

Grey Knights @1500
Castellan Crowe in the Henchmen's Razorback w/ Psi ammo
Cardinal Ximinez, Inquisitor; Power Armor, Psychotroke, Rad grenades, 3 Survo-Skulls
Mega-City Judges (Warriors) x3 with a Meltagun
Alpha Purifiers x8; 2 Psycannons, Hammer, 5 Halberds, Rhino
Gamma Purifiers x8; 2 Psycannons, Hammer, 5 Halberds, Rhino
Omega Purifiers x8; 2 Psycannons, Hammer, 5 Halberds, Rhino
Rifleman Dreadnought x2; Quad Autocannons w/ Psi Ammo
Rifleman Dreadnought; Assault Cannon and TL Autocannons w/ Psi Ammo
Kill Points 13; 29 Men, 7 Vehicles

Chaplain Caecilius with Jump Pack, Melta Bombs
Purpureus Tactical Squad with Melta, Lascannon & power-gauntlet
Albus Tactical Squad with Melta, Plasma Cannon & power-gauntlet in a Rhino
Plumbeus Devastator Squad with 4 Missile Launchers in Razorback with TL Lascannon
Tripudio 5 man Assault Squad with Power-gauntlet and Plasma Pistol.
Tempestas Terminator Squad with assault cannon & CML
Brother Grumio Dreadnought

stardate: 901.M41
The planet had official been declaired clensed of Lugft Huron's renegades for three days. However reports kept coming in of small pockets of resistence remaining. Responding to these reports Cardinal Ximinez came across a small detachment of marines. These loyalist marines failed to recognise the cardinals mixed force and opened fire...

The Cardinals forces arrived from the south-east heading towards the central ruins (objective). Gamma squad stopped on a small hill (objective) to get a good shooting position. The Ultramarines had been repairing a power generator in the west and a second in the south west (objectives) but had been searching some ruins in the north-east when they spotted the dust cloud of approaching vehicles.

Turn One:
Seizing the initiative Purpureus Squad ran into the central ruins. Albus-gravis drove their APC to the South-Western Power generator while Albus-Pugnus headed to the western power generators (5 marines at each). Missiles shattered the drive motor of the first Rifleman and detonated Omega Squads APC killing four Knights.

Ximinez lead Alpha Knights to the west to protect the power generator; the Judges ran into cover while everything else opened fire on the renegades. When the smoke cleared 14 marines were dead leaving just a single Lascannon from Purpureus squad in the ruins and an empty APC in the south-west.

Turn Two:
Supported by Purpureus's lascannon Brother Grumio and the Terminators stomped around the northern side of the central ruins and opened fire on Gamma Knights. The APC seemed to lead a charmed life; with only its storm bolter destoyed. Caecilius and his troops jumped over the ruins and charged into combat with the third Rifleman. The Castellan jumped out of the APC and charged into the Assault Marines swinging wildly. Two Judges are killed. The cardinals men turned their attention to the second power generator and killed four marines (just the melta gun left).

Turn Three:
The Terminators continue their relentless march but Brother Grumio is immobilised and shaken; the other Rifleman is wrecked. Purpureus Squad is wiped out but the last man from Albus will not die! Three Knights from Alpha squad are killed by missiles. Caecilius can not attach meltabombs to the Rifleman and Crowe finally kills some assault marines.

Turn Four:
Gamma's APC continues to lead a charmed life. Crowe finishes off the Assault Marines and Caecilius with cleansing flame and runs towards Brother Grumio. Judge Dread takes out the last tactical marine with his meltagun. Alpha Knights exchange fire with the Devastators; both squads lose a couple of men. A couple of Terminators fall to the combined fire of Gamma & Omega Knights.

Turn Five:
The Terminators finally destroy Gamma's APC! Return fire from four Psycannons & stormbolters kills four including both heavy weapons (snake eyes on the saves). Alpha Knights surge forward to protect the Power Generator and wipe out the last of Plumbeus Devastators. The Knight's Razorback glances the damaged Rhino into a wrecked state.

Victory to the Knights: Two objective to zero.
Ultramarines have - 2 Terminators, Dreadnought (immobilised), Razorback (Immobilised, no gun).
Knights have - Dreadnought, Razorback, 13 Purifers (including all 6 Psycannons), 1 Warrior, both HQ.

I was expecting more from Crowe. However the assault squad was spread out around the Dread so he could not make use of his sweep attack and kept rolling one for his D3 attacks. I did not get to try out the funky grenades or Halberds in combat as there was so little melee in the game. Psycannons were amazing at putting wounds on the Terminators and the Str 7 was useful for dealing with armour.

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Barrow Kings Battle Report: Game 1

With a little bit of help from a Space Marine Dreadnought (Colossus) my Mantic Undead graduated from Tomb King school for their first game last night. Since I am not a fan of random spells I went for Khatap the special character with loremaster so I could try all the spells in the new lore. We rolled the Watch tower scenario but as my smallest unit was 21 Archers I could not start anyone in the tower.

Barrow Kings @2000 points
High Liche Khatap
Prince w/ Armour of Destiny, Great Weapon
Necrotech w/ Silver Steel Armour, Dragonbane Gem
Archers x21 w/ Banner, Musician
Warriors x30 w/ Light Armour, Full Command
Warriors x30 w/ Light Armour, Full Command
Tomb Guard x30 w/ Full Command, Undying Banner
Skull Catapult x2
Casket of Souls
Colossus w/ extra hand weapon

Skaven Army @2000 points
Warlock Engineer leading 40 slaves
Battle Standard Bearer leading 40 Clan Rats with Warpfire thrower
Plague Priest leading 40 Plague monks
Grey Seer leading 40 Clan Rats with Warpfire thrower
40 Slaves with slings

The plague monks held the centre of the Skaven lines. The Engineer and Standard bearer were on the left flank with the cannon, wheel, Seer and Sling slaves on the right flank.

The Casket and one catapult started in the graveyard on the right flank while the Prince took centre with a unit of warriors on either flank and the archers and colossus behind them. The second catapul was on the far right flank.

Turn One:
The Skaven bombarded the risen dead with magic and warpfire. However all the injuries were easily healed by the Liches magic as he protected the whole army with spells of protection and marched them forward. The graveyard catapult misfired and the other missed.

Turn Two:
The Plague Monks garrisoned the tower and withered the Tomb Guard. The Doomwheel managed an 18" charge straight into my catapult crushing it completely! On the left flank the Warriors charged into the clan rats. On the right flank the Tomb Guard failed their charge. The cannon shot bounced off the Colossus as it battered into the Seers bodyguards for a single wound that was parried. The Liche irresistibly gave the undead a ward save and promptly lost the rest of the power dice and a few archers in the ensuring explosion.

Turn Three:
The Seer continued to detonate skeletons with magic while weight of numbers dragged the Colossus to its doom (curse you crumbling). On the left flank the slaves charged into the Warriors flank. While on the right the other slaves charged into the Tomb Guards flank and were defeated by the Prince and overrun. Unable to swiftly reform the Guard lost time reforming. The Doomwheel rolled into the other Warrior unit and crushed several. The catapult and archers killed some Plague monks but the horde held fast in the tower. Once more the Liche irresistibly gave the undead a ward save and promptly lost most of the power dice due to feedback! This allowed the Seer to easily dispel the Caskets light of death.

Turn Four.
The Seer fluffed his spell but the Plague Priest continued to wither the Tomb Guard who were trudging slowly back towards the tower under heavy cannon fire. In shooting the catapult misfired and destroyed itself. The rats overran on the left flank while the Warriors on right destroyed the doomwheel but failed to swiftly reform leaving them too far away to be of any further use in the battle. The Liche sent a vortex of screaming skulls through the rats and promptly forgot his most important spells as he was reduced to a level two wizard!

Turn Five:
Guess what? The Liche irresistibly gives the Archers extra attacks and is prevented from casting any more spells. The undying banner fails to cast making the casket an easy target for the seers counter spell. Plague winds consume several archers as they continue to pepper the monks with arrows. The prince fails to charge into the tower (by one inch). The Skaven did not do much better with one warpfire thrower exploding and the other burning plague monks.

Turn Six:
Accompanied by six guard the Prince charges into the tower. His Necrotech companion having been felled by a cannon shot. He slaughters some plague monks and then promptly died to crumbling. At least the Liche was able to enhance him with some magic during the final turn...

With twenty Monks still in the tower and two units of Clan Rats the Skaven drive off the remaining Barrow King back to their mounds to regenerate.

When I got him into combat the Prince did very well. Perhaps I should take a pair of them next time rather than a Necrotech? For the extra one hundred points over a normal level four with dispel scroll I do not think Khatap was that useful. I did make use of his re-roll a couple of times but it just does not seem enough. My opponent kept his dispel dice for the Casket and since I lost most of my power dice each turn it did nothing other than generate a couple of extra dice each turn. The colossus can not take a unit on his own; I need to hold him back as a counter-charge unit next time.

EDIT: I have just found out the Colossus has a Thunderstomp attack for an extra d6 hits each turn! Do not think it would have changed the overall result but he would have been able to chew through the Clan Rats and and Seer rather than just dying.

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Project: Casket of Souls

I am working on a Casket of Souls using Mantic Game's Undead models.

A Liche King Keeper is casting spells from the spell book held by the elf slave.  The casket is behind him with the body of a scarified victim whose life blood is powering the spell.  At the front the two casket guard are directing the newly raised skeletons into the battle.

I have mocked up my design on a movement tray and it seems to fit well on a 75-80mm square base.  So what do people think?  Do you think when painted up this will be a nice looking Casket of Souls?  You can see the official casket picture above. I have tried aa few different layouts; I think having the slave on the Keepers left (picture 3) is the best.

Liche King, dead elf & Wraiths from Mantic Games.
Elf Slave from Shadowforge miniatures.
Casket, something I purchased so many years ago I have no idea who made it!