Sunday, February 27, 2011

Vanguard Veterans

Thought I would put up some pics of my Vanguard Veterans, since I am gonna start playtesting them. Turns out my camera memory card has crapped out, so I had to snap em with my phone, sorry about the quality.

This was the paint scheme I used on my Storm Shields, finished them off with a blue ink.


Sergeant w/ LC/SS




Paint scheme - 
-Black Basecoat
-Mechrite Red
-Red Gore Drybrush
-Blood Red Drybrush
-Badab Black Wash
-Tabards got a Devlan Mud Wash on top of everything

Still have to base 'em, and still not sure how much playin time they'll get, but I think that they turned out ok, regardless. Storm Shields are from GW bitz.

So what do you think? Hit or miss?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Vindicator...Pie Plates of Doom

The Vindicator. Just saying the word can drain the color from an opponents face. Simply placing the little stubby thing on the board automatically changes the way the person on the other side deploys/plays. From turn one, they are playing reactively. So why is it that we don't see these little bulldogs on the table as much as we used to?

Part of it is the survivability of vehicles in 5th. This has encouraged many to dust off their Landraiders and use up all of their HS choices. I have seen 4 Raider lists in tournament play out of C:SM. I think another is the 24" range. When a lot of people get to selecting their HS, they look for range. Las Cannons, Missile Launchers, anything with a 36"+ range. While powerful, it is not as reliable for poppin armor due to range and scatter.

When it comes to Blood Angels, you tend to see a lot of Preds due to the Fast rule. Everyone and their mama are runnin Autocannon/Las Cannon preds, and why not? Move 6" and fire 2 S7 AND 2 S9 shots?? Yes please! Also the BA vindy has to share FOC slots with not only preds, but drop pod dreads, cheapy cheap dev squads, and Stormravens!

Space Wolves players have Long Fangs.......moving on.
Space Wolves' Default Heavy Support choice

Now, after I have brought all these defects and issues to the surface, surely I can't be trying to convince you to take one of these little suckers, can I? Of course I am. One of the most important parts of Warhammer 40,000 is knowing your units and how to use them properly. You must know their weaknesses, as well as their strengths. 

Looking at this end has been known
 to cause sweats,  irrational behavior,
instant vacation of the bowels,
screaming, crying, paralysis, and death.
The number one rule to Vindicators was voiced by my good friend Pariah.Stevo, "If they're good enough to run one of, they are good enough to run two of ". One of the biggest beefs people have with Vindys is that they tend to go down turn one, as they are so terrifying. Running two is an insurance policy. The opponent will kill one and leave the rest of the army unscathed or try and split up their fire, giving you a better chance either way of having a tank left. If they both survive, then you can reek some real havoc. Everyone is afraid of a S10 AP2 large blast, and I mean everyone. Running them in a pair also helps when a scatter die doesn't go your way, basically giving you a second chance. As said before, A Vindicator makes your opponent play into your hands. Two Vindicators makes them fill their pants. All for a petite price tag, weighing in at a cool 115pts a piece.


Now, for BA players, the Vindicator becomes an even better option, as it has the Fast rule Cause Da Red Ones Go Fasta!!. That means that a Red Vindy has an effective 36" range, moving 12" then throwing that template. On a pitched battle deployment, if you have first turn, you can throw 2 Vindys 12" up and have range to pretty much your opponents entire deployment zone. Can you say "Bye Bye Nob Bikers"? The sheer devastation that these bad boys can cause, as well as the psychological effect they have on your opponent, can be yours for a cool 145 pts.

The Vindy can also take some nifty equipment, as they are the only tank that can take the awesome lookin siege shield, which allows you to ignore dangerous terrain tests. Not sure if it is worth 10 pts, but it could save you some grief when that 1 drops. 

Space Wolves can also bene..........oh yeah, Long Fangs.

Now, For You Black Templars out there, your Vindicators can take the almighty POTMS, essentially making it fast, and ignoring Crew Shaken/Stunned. Definitely something to consider.

Now, I am not saying that the Vindicator is the end all be all HS choice, or that every list should take them. I am just trying to give those who haven't ever used or considered it an idea of the game changer it can be. They can be truly deadly, if given the chance.

So, how many of you guys regularly take Vindicators? When has that S10 template saved your rear end?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Dustin' Off the Grey Knights

Well, if you haven't heard, Codex: Grey Knights will be coming to us within the next 2 months. Also, for those of you living under a rock, they are going to be the epitome of elite armies. 20-30 models at 2000pts. Also, there has been a "leaked" codex, with speculation to its authenticity ranging from complete fraud to a cover art away from your nearest FLGS shelf, with the truth probably somewhere in between.

As I have glanced through the pdf and read the rumors, I must say that if the codex ends up with half of this stuff then it is going to be awesome. It will bring a whole new style of play to our beloved game. Never before have we had an army so elitist, so many psychic powers, a small army with the ability to take on the hordes. Grey Knights offer us all this, and more. 2++ saves, 2 wound terminators, 30" teleporters, I can't wait! 

This has prompted me to pull out my old Grey Knights force and survey the damage that 3 moves and a year in storage can cause. Surprisingly, they aren't that bad. What I have;

Brother Captain Stern
10 GK Termies
30 PAGK's - 3 Justicars, 5 psycannons, 6 Incinerators

Oh, yeah, well you just wait till April, then i'll really show you whats up!!
Not a bad lot, as I should have enough PAGK's to use, as well as enough psycannons/incinerators for the purgation squads. I will prolly buy a Stormraven, some dread kits, and a boox of the new plastic termies rumored to run as my paladin termies. I'll have to get a better look at the Dreadnight before I make my final decision to run him. 

I am just excited, as this is an army that I will be able to get up and running with very little added cost. Plannin on tryin to get them finished paint wise before the codex drops. Will update as I go along

So what do y'all think about the rumors? How excited are you about Codex: Grey Knights? Is GW headed in the right direction?

Monday, February 21, 2011

The Grizz's fabled past featured on Intl House of Paincakes

1,000 Page Views W00T!!!

Cause for Celebration!!!! We've made it to 1,000 page views! Thanks to all the followers/readers who have kept this little blog rollin right along! Without you, I would just be blabbering to noone, or my wife, who I am sure could care less about my 40k habit. Anyways, thanks for reading!!

Here is where i need your help. Tell me your comments, criticisms, what you like or don't like, what you would like to see more of, or just whatever you are thinkin!

The Grizz Hates Ghazghkull...

just looking at him brings so many words to mind, not one of them child friendly
Played a 2500pt game against Pariah.Stevo Saturday, both of us trying to get ready for the big tournament at the Barn in mid March. I took the list I posted last week, Stevo took-


 Big Mek -Kustom Force field, Power Klaw, Cybork Body 

 15 Lootas
 15 Lootas   

 10 Nobs - Waaagh!! Banner, Painboy, Power Klaw ,Stikkbombz 
Battlewagon - deffrolla ,Red Paint ,2 X Big Shoota, Amour Plates 

7 Nobs Bikers - Cybork Bodies, 4 Power Klaws,  2 Big Choppas ,Painboy 2, Combi-Skorchas,  2 bosspoles,  Waaagh!!! Banner   

18 orks nob Pk Bosspole   

18 orks nob Pk Bosspole   

11 grots   

2 Deffkoptas-  2 TL Rokkit Launcha, 2 Buzzsaws   


BattleWagon- Deffrolla, 2 Big Shootas, Red Paint  

BattleWagon- Deffrolla, 2 Big Shootas, Red Paint     


we played 5 obj's Pitched Battle. The game was very interesting, cause for the 1st 3 turns, we kinda danced around each other, both waiting for the other to move so we could gain the charge, waiting for that one misstep to put a unit in charge range. The game had a lot of suck come my way. First, the one new unit that I wanted to try (assembled and painted on friday so I could use them Saturday), the Vanguard Vets, Deep Sruck in on turn 3, scattered into dangerous terrain, and out of charge range. They subsequently took 30 loota shots to the face. 350pts that never saw combat. Next would definitely be the straw that broke the camel's back. He drove 2 battlewagons across the board and dumped Ghazzy, Naked Nobs, and 19 boys on me. 

I guess this counts for their armor save rolls too...
The nobs killed the DC, Ghazz whomped the DC Dread, and the boys were tied in assault with an assault squad. Next turn I was going to kill Ghazghkull, I had already decided . He had WAAAGHed last turn, so his 2++ was in effect, so I knew it would take a lot of dice to lay him low. So I shot and charged him with Sanguinor, A Librarian w/ Sanguine Sword, and 20 assault marines w/ the Blessed sergeant. That is a total of 88 attacks, with Sanguinor rerolling to hit and wound. Now, Mathhammer says that just the assault squads should have caused 5 and change unsaved wounds, not counting PF's,Sang. Sword, and Sanguinor. Stevo never rolled a 1. Not one. Ghazghkull was unwounded. 

This was the beginning of the end for me, as I got charged by the nobs next turn and pretty much got chomped to little bits. We called it on turn 5, as he had 2 objectives and I had 2 models. It was one of those games where one or two events decide the entire outcome. I think I played well, just didnt have the dice go my way.

I am gonna keep trying the VVs, see if they are worth their hefty price tag or too big of a gamble. Look forward to the next one, we'll see if Ghazghkull's luck has run out...

Thursday, February 17, 2011

List Buildin

Cause the Red ones DO go fasta....
Well, gettin ready for Game Day Saturday, and tryin to get a list together. We are preparing for a big 2500 pt. tourney goin on in March, so a lot of guys are bringin in some lists to try them out. I am no different, and have thrown together a list to give a go.

The Sanguinor!!!1!1!!!1!one!!!1!!eleven!!!!1!!11!!!
---jump pack, Shield of Sang., Sang. Sword

Sanguinary Priest
---Jump Pack, Power Weapon

3x 10 man RAS
---Melta, Flamer, Fisty Sarge
10x Death Co.
---3x Power Weapon, 1x Power Fist
DC Dread
---Blood Talons

5x Vanguard Vets
--- Jump Packs, 5x Storm Shields, 1x LC, 1x PW, 1x TH, 1x PF, LC Sarge

Storm Raven
---TL Ass Cannon, MM, EA
2x Dev. Squads
---4x ML

2500pts on the nose.

The idea is to run all the RAS, the libby, and the Sang Priest in one big blob, DSing the VV to knock out/tie up key units in assault, shoot the poop out of em w/ the ML Dev Squads, and bring the Storm Raven on the board from reserve as usual.

The VV are a new unit that I just put together yesterday, and this will be my first time playing with them. Expensive? Yes, but I am eager to see how good they do. I think that their ability to assault out of DS along with the DoA rule makes for an almost guaranteed assault the turn they come in, and they are packin a wallop. It is one of those units that makes your opponent switch into reactive mode, which is right where you want them.

God Bless The 80s
Questions? Comments? Concerns? lets hear em.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The New GW

Sorry for the slight delay in updates, had a busy weekend (by busy I mean Monster Truck Rally) So lets get into it, shall we?

This was the way we used to react to new codexes
Having played 40k since 1998, I have become very accustomed to the way that they do things. I remember getting the 2nd C:SM for 3rd Ed and just comparing it to the previous codex, the only difference being less models and more points per. The 4th Ed Guard Codex only had 3 heavy support choices. Then came the 4th Ed. Chaos Space Marine Codex......blech. GW's greatest blunder came in the form of a 2 part article in White Dwarf that they tried to pass off as a new Blood Angel Codex. The move to cookie cutter, boring, crappy codexes had finally reached its lowest. This was the GW that I knew, the one i was accustomed to. Then came the 4th Ed Orks codex, bringing with it a glimmer of hope, followed shortly by the great 5th. edition. 

If memory serves me correctly, next was our own dear C:SM, with new units, new models, and special characters that we can actually use! The nice thing was, this wasn't a passing fad, this was their new direction. They targeted the armies that need it most (excluding necrons) with the Blood Angels and Space Wolves, and now with the Grey Knights. Armies that were unusable and the butt of jokes are now on the top tables an the tourney scene. Armies are getting new codexes and complete new ranges (Dark Eldar anyone??). This is unheard of from the GW I knew. 

What has sparked this rambling you ask? I guess it must be the new Grey Knights coming out. From all the rumors over at BOLS, they are looking to be the epitome of elite, low model count forces. The new rules are looking different, flavorful, and most of all, fun. It's just nice to know that armies/codexes are being written with fun and theme in mind, and with sweet model ranges to match. As much as we moan about GW, in my opinion, they have come a long way from the boring vehicleless gunlines of 3rd/4th.

So, what do you think of the new Codexes that have come out, or about 5th in general?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Best Saturday Ever

Pure. Unadulterated. Testosterone.
No this post has nothing to do with 40k at all, but i thought i would wish a happy Saturday to everybody as I am on my way to the Georgia Dome to Watch Monster Jam. A day full of big trucks, squashed cars, and Grave Digger! Y'all have a good one, cause i know I will!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Rules...

Yes, the entire premise of this blog post came about because I needed an excuse to post this picture
The rules; they are the guiding light of our hobby. Without them, Warhammer would be nothing more than a cool back story, some pictures, and a whole bunch of awesome looking (yet completely worthless) models. So, in a small way (sarcasm intended) the rules are kind of important. Yet, some people still are not satisfied, their hatred for specific rules filling the forums and covering blogs. TLOS here, Wound allocation there, everyone has that one they love to hate. Most of them, i don't really have an issue with. A select few, however, have earned my contempt.

Night Fighting

Apparently, just cause it's standard issue today doesn't mean jack.
Night fight has to be one of my least favorite rules in the history of Warhammer 40,000, mostly because I always forget about it. 

How many people have rolled to hit, wound, got that glorious penetrating hit, and then Lady Luck shines on you and that 6 rolls on the table for the damage chart. You jump up and down, thanking the powers that be, until your opponent utters those dreaded words, "hey can you see that? Isn't it night fighting?" Your emotions do a 180, you mutter every curse you can think of, sometimes making new ones up. You roll your to see dice, and you aren't even close.

I think my biggest thing with night fighting is that it really doesn't bring anything to the game. I have no problem with rules that encourage a certain style of play or bring something new. Night fighting does nothing except piss you off and hurt shooty armies. It is one of those rules that has been around forever, and just keeps getting put into the books out of habit.

Defensive Weapons

No matter how beautiful your tank is,
 2/3rds of it is useless
In my honest opinion, one of the dumbest things GW ever did was change defensive weapons to 4 and under, as opposed to the previous 5 and under. This basically made heavy bolters pointless. 

Yeah, GW I am gonna pay 25 points for those heavy bolter sponsons that I can't shoot unless I sit still. Retarded. Maybe my hatred for this rule change is based solely around me playing Blood Angels and their fast vehicles all the time and then being constantly frustrated when i go back to C:SM and can't move and shoot crap. Either way, it is mildly irritating, and didn't improve the game at all.

Pivoting and assaults

Who pivoted now?!?!
I remember the first time I heard this rule. I had moved 2 rhinos up the last turn at full speed. The next turn, i spun those bad boys around and unloaded two full squads of plague marines and charged them into a big squad of orks. Ol' Pariah Stevo quickly informed me that I couldn't do that. 

I was confused, i said "pivoting doesn't count as moving".  Then he showed me the rule. Stupid. So wait, if you pivot you can fire 300 lascannons but that 5 man scout squad can't walk or punch a grot, all because the Vehicle TURNED AROUND?!?!?!?! Another seemingly pointless rule that adds nothing to the game.

Jet Packs

Tau - So terrible in Assault, we have to
model us being good at it to make us feel better.
This rule is not necessarily flawed, or a game breaker, or the result of a poor thought process. I think the only reason that i dislike jet packs is because this single rule basically defines the only army that has access to them. 

The assault phase is my personal favorite part of 40k. It separates the men from the boys, it puts hair all over your nether regions, it is the epitome of my phallus is larger than your phallus. 

And how do the almighty vaginal faced, blue skinned 3 toed communist aliens spend this phase? By running away. Really? How could any one play an army that completely sucks at a part of the game so bad that the best thing they can do during it is run away??? I mean even non assaulty armies have some decent assault units. Guard have Straken Mobs/ogryn, Eldar have Banshees, Tau have.............kroot? Pitiful, just pitiful. Hide behind your guns, Tau wiener heads, cause even a railgun turns into nothing more than a S5 beat stick when i get close enough...

Typical results of Tau assaults
Now, don't think that I have a hatred toward 5th edition or anything. In fact, my sentiments toward the rule set is the opposite. 5th is, imho, the best, most complete set of rules GW has released, and it has definitely made the game more enjoyable. There is always, however, a few imperfections in even the best made product. These are just a few of my personal gripes.

So, what rules piss you off? what makes you cringe every time you read it, or makes you throw a codex/brick of dice every time it comes up?

Monday, February 7, 2011

Well, at least we had fun...

Bob Barker = Con Nooga
Happy Gilmore = Team Awesomesauce
Well, we made it back from Cleveland, and the self named "Team Awesomesauce" had a great time hangin out and playin in the Con Nooga 2400pt team tourney down at Dicehead Games & Comics. We had a blast, yes, but as for how we fared, it was not quite as we had hoped. We went 1-2-0, not nearly the finish we had hoped for, bringing Team Awesomesauce to an incredible 1-4-1 record in team tournament play. Before going any farther, I encourage you to go over to Stevo's blog for a complete game breakdown (otherwise what I typed won't make sense), and then below I will throw in my color commentations.

Game One

The Good

- Opponent was wiped from the board on turn 5
- Steve and I had a good plan, and we executed well
- We were able to take advantage of opponents mistakes.

The Bad
- Really everything went our way, can't complain too much.

Game Two

The Good
- Even with luck against us, had my reserves come in even on turn 4 we would have had a chance to win/tie
- our opponents were both Auburn fans. (War Eagle!!)

The Bad
- My entire army was in reserve. First Blood Angel unit to show up was the Assault squad on turn 3. The Baal came in on turn 4. The 730pt Stormraven Squad didnt show up till turn 5. We basically fought 2400pts of DE/Nids with 1200 pts for half a game. Never Good.
- The Dice. They hated me. Real Bad. Its hard to beat good opponents/lists on good days, even harder when you are fightin lady luck as well.

Game Three

The Good
- We got to play against some good gamers/friends, so win/lose/draw it was set up to be a lot of fun.
- I got to see first hand what the new FAQ has done for Black Templar *shudder*

Flicker Field!!
The Bad
- After getting the ever living dog poop knocked out of his army due to no BA support because of my reserve rolls the game before, Stevo "encouraged" (read: made) me deploy my entire army on the board, no reserves. That meant that Baal Pred and Stormraven were starin down the bad end of about 20 Missile Launcher/Dark Lances. And they had first turn. Needless to say, they never moved, both going down turn one.
- Nowhere to hide. The table was a desert scene, with little to no cover big enough to hide behind. And boy was the opponent shooty.
- Spearhead Deployment. I hate spearhead more than anything, especially against multiple fast skimmers. Its a hard enough mission as it is, and when fighting a quick army, it just gets worse.

Even though we got butt whooped, Stevo and I left with smiles. All you can eat steak and ribs at Logan's never hurts either. The important thing is that we learned a lot from this tourney, a lot of things that we can take with us and use to improve for the next go round. One thing it has done as well is that it gave me the tournament bug somethin fierce. After being out of it since last September, The Con Nooga Team Tournament was a great way to dive back in and get me ready for more. As of tonight I am already workin on a 2500pt list for a tourney in March, and am entertaining thoughts of playing in a couple more between now and then.

As the old saying goes, "There is always next time". Maybe The Grizz and Stevo can learn from their mistakes, or they might repeat 'em!! 

Friday, February 4, 2011

Little Rituals

This has nothing to do with the actual content of this blog, it was just the first thing to pop up in Google Images and it looked too awesome to pass up. I apologize, now carry on!

Last night I began going through all of my things and getting them in order for the Con Nooga 2400pt Team Tourney Saturday at Dicehead Games and Comics in Cleveland, TN. I began to go into auto pilot, running through the motions of getting everything packed, and I began to notice the little things that are so familiar to me,all the things that i do consciously and subconsciously during my preparation. I began to watch my ritual.

Everyone's ritual is...different
Ritual before a tournament - Everyone has one, in some form or fashion.That little something that must be done, rubbing that little good luck charm, whatever it is, no matter how pointless or "dumb", you do it anyway, every time, without question. This is not something that is relegated to wargaming. Look at professional sports. The playoff beard in the NFL, LeBron's powder clap in the NBA, and pretty much everything in baseball (if you've seen the Major League films, you know exactly what i am talkin about), all these are good luck charms or simple rituals that you do to get your head in the game.

Cause nothing says I love you like bein a dick.
Also has nothing to do with the Blog
I am no exception. When I get ready for a tourney, I have to go about it a certain way.The first thing I do is build a list. once I have it on paper, i get out the casualty board and I set the whole list out, just as I would if I was showing it off at a tournament. I am a very visual learning type of person, I have to see it in order to understand it. Therefore, by getting the army out and set up, I am able to then take all the numbers and letters from the list and merge it with the visual picture of my army. I then have a much better idea of whether I am happy with the list, or if it is back to the drawing boards. I then run through the list to check for WYSIWYG. Afterwards, I pack it all into my Battlefoam and then run through the list again, to ensure that I haven't forgotten anything.

Then comes packing of the gaming aids. Tape measure, TAC measuring tool, templates, wound markers, etc get packed neatly into a tray. When it comes to small/large blast and flamer templates, i always grab two of each, and stack them neatly on top of each other; don't really know why, as soon as i pick it up they are gonna slide and scatter, but I do it anyway.

Finally, we come to the good luck charm; rolling out the ones. Now, this may sound crazy and lack any logical sense, but hey, its a good luck charm, it doesn't have to. I take my dice bag, and pour it out onto the table. I  then separate them all by colors. Then i pick up all the dice from one pile and begin to roll them, picking up every die that lands on a one and put it back in the bag. I keep rolling the dice until every die's last roll was a one. I then move to the next group of dice and start over. That way, the last roll that every die in my dice bag rolled was 1, and so hopefully, it won't roll 1's back to back. I know, it is stupid and really has no bearing on how my dice will roll the next time out of the bag, but I do it anyway, before every tournament, without fail.

So, what are y'all's before tournament rituals? How do you prepare for "The Big Game"?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Tourney Time in Tennessee!

For no other reason than it makes me laugh every time i see it
Well, the Pariah.Stevo and myself have hurriedly decided as of yesterday that we were gonna go down to Cleveland, TN and participate in a 2400pt team tournament at one of my favorite big tournament venues, Dicehead Games & Comics. This decision came about as we were talkin about how we don't go and play in tourneys like we used to, and how much fun we used to have when we hit the circuit pretty hard. 

Stevo was all like "well lets find us a tourney to go to" and i am like "ok sounds good". So after a few strikeouts, we came across the team tournament, and got all excited about how it would be a great way to kick off the year and how much fun we were gonna have and how we were gonna redeem ourselves from our 0-1-2 finish at the last team tourney we went to and...well crap that was last weekend. We hang our heads in disappointment. 

Well, to make a long story short, i get a phone call yesterday from the Stevo, and did he have some good news there. Apparently, your favorite new blogger, yours truly, and his tournament partner ,the Stevo, are incapable of the basic concept of reading numbers. The tournament was this coming Saturday, and it is game on!

So we have been workin on trying to feverishly throw together 2 1200pt lists that can play together as one list. Last year, Steve and I just took the nastiest stuff we could think of - Warboss on a bike and Nob Bikers and Abaddon and plague marines. after a first round tie, a second round wipe, and a third round drubbing by some high school freshmen, we felt quite worthless. Tired and weak, we left that tourney a little bowlegged, but with some valuable experience. 

So this year, we are trying to build a more "balanced" list. Thus far, this is what we have come up with

Big Mek
---Kustom Force Field, Cybork Body, Boss Pole, 'eavy armor, Power Klaw

2x squads of 15 Lootas

2x squads - 19 boys, Nob w/ Boss pole & Power Klaw
2x Battlewagons - Red Paint, Extra Armor, Deffrolla, 2 Big shootas

10 Grots

Blood Angels
Librarian - Jump Pack, Shield of Sang., The Sanguine Sword
Sang. Priest - Power Weapon, Jump Pack
2x 10 man RAS - Flamer, Melta, Fisty Sarge

5x Scout Squad - 4x Sniper Rifles, 1x Heavy Bolter

2x Baal Preds - Ass. Cannons, Heavy Bolters

Predator - Autocannon, Lascannons

For a grand total of 2493 pts.

Stevo may trade out the Grots and some equip on the mek for a deff dread, but we will see. Either way, we shall see how everything goes on Saturday! List critiques, comments, or criticisms welcome!

Well there you have it. Will The Grizz and Stevo come back from Cleveland victorious? Or will they walk that familiar Road of Shame in a repeat of last year? Look for updates and a full tourney run down soon!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

If you are into that kind of thing...

It's not biased if it's the truth!
Well, my good buddy Pariah.Stevo has just started a blog, Tainted By Xenos. It is a blog dedicated to covering the Xenos armies in all forms. He is quite the experienced gamer (a little Stevo background HERE), having played Xenos races since the inception of 3rd. ed Necrons. So if you are looking for something a little different, if you have a xenos itch that needs to be scratched (I scratch 'em with a flamethrower...), give it a look, you won't be disappointed!

Space Marines

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Storm Raven. The Ugly Duckling of the Adeptus Astartes

Since the release of the latest White Dwarf, and with the model coming out Feb. 5th (or now for some lucky people) much discussion has been brought up about the Stormraven. Some love it, some hate it, but everyone is talking about it. The new model, to me, is very exciting, because it will let a lot of people who have never used it before or who are afraid to scratchbuild the chance to try something new, opening a part of their codex and new tactics that they have never tried before. As someone who ha been playing with the SR for quite some time now, I thought that I would offer a little insight into the world that is, the Blood Angels Stormraven.


The Mighty Thunderhawk...
I have not had the opportunity to hold/play with/see in real life the new kit. The pictures, though, have really got me excited. A lot of people aren't a fan of the aesthetics of the kit. Too boxy, they say, too ugly they say. Has anybody looked at our mighty Astartes' motor pool lately? Rhino - box. Predator - box. Land Raider - you guessed it, box. Even the closest thing to compare it to, the Thunderhawk, is a giant refrigerator box with wings on it. So i am not really sure what people were expecting. I think all the sleek, smooth scratchbuilds everyone made from the valkyrie kit really ruined it for some people. For over a year, people became accustomed to the Valk/raven look, and their minds began seeing this as what the kit should be.

So when GW released the sneak peeks of their model, people were shocked. It would be like if all of your life you thought you knew what a horse looked like and all of a sudden the "official people" changed the horse to look like a cow. 

Games Workshop's Horse
Now in my mind, the new kit from Games Workshop is a perfect representation of what a Stormraven is. It looks like it belongs in the 40k universe, as well as in a Space Marine army. It is square, bare, and is made for one purpose, bein killy. It is a tool with which the Angels of Death carry out the will of the Emperor, and nothing more.

Another cool thing about the kit is the ability to build any load out without any conversions. All the options are in the box (wait, did I just say that GW actually is releasing a COMPLETE kit with ALL the available upgrades??). So you can make it however you want to make it. All this for the low price of.....umm....ok the kit ain't cheap, weighing in at a hefty 66 clams. But with the enormity of the kit, and all the options it comes with, I don't think it is TOO terrible. 

For Play

Ok, on the table is where this bad boy really shines. Lets go through the options one by one.

Standard Loadout
-Twin Linked Heavy Bolter
-Twin Linked Assault Cannon
-4 Bloodstrike Missiles

This thing can really throw out the Firepower. Now, as far as extras, you can swap out the Heavy Bolter for a  Twin linked Multi Melta or for a little extra, a typhoon missile launcher. The top Ass.Cannon can be swapped for either twin linked Plasma cannons or twin linked las cannons. You can also, for a little extra lettuce, throw some hurricane bolters on the sides, adding some defensive firepower to the mix.

I tend to favor the multi melta, ass. cannon, extra armour setup on mine. Comes in at cheaper than a land raider, and still has plenty of shots. And with POTMS, that bad boy is quite capable of truckin 24" across the board and still doin work on enemy tanks/transports. And with Skies of Blood, your fellas can always disembark, no matter the distance moved, much like the Valkyrie.

Now the cool part about the Stormraven is its transport capacity. This thing can haul! 12 marines or 6 termies/Assault troops! Thats right, this baby is the only vehicle in the 40k universe that can tote our hoppy little friends all across the board. Oh yeah, did I mention it can throw a dread in the back?! Now we are talkin about some serious killy! This is the best way to ensure that your nastiest stuff gets into combat safe and sound.


What your stormraven does to the enemy's plans.
Now is where people tend to disagree. How many do you take? How do you use them? Well here is my take  on it. I tend to use the Stormraven much like I run my Land Raiders in my C:SM lists. Put the nastiest thing you have in it and throw it down someone's throat. I tend to run one of them and leave mine in reserve and move it off from the board edge, allowing me to #1, see my opponent's plan and try to disrupt it and #2 put my killiness to use best. If you go 2nd, it is almost a must to leave it in reserve, as it will most surely get blasted in your deployment zone if you don't. Also, this allows the rest of your army to pop some transports/threats to your stormraven, giving the assaulty units inside more targets. The vehicle is fast, so it can make up for lost time if it comes in on turn 3/4, crossing halfway across the board in one turn, and gaining that beautiful all important 4+ save. The Stormraven will then most certainly become a fire magnet the turn it shows up, which is ok, if it has the obscured save, in my experiences it can take it, saving the rest of your army from harm

You will hear a lot of people talking about how it is only armor 12 and will be dead in no time, but I encourage all you doubting thomases to do the rolls. With Extra armor, immunity to melta, and a 4+ save, very rarely will it not make it to the other side. And even if it goes down, your killiest unit is already halfway across the board! Not too shabby if you ask me.

After unloading, the stormraven makes a great firebase in the opponent's deployment zone. with all its guns, it can tear an enemy's heavy support slots wide open. This plus the unit you disgorged are too big of a issue for the fella on the other side of the table to ignore. Now the opponent is having to adjust to you, which is the way you want it. Now the cards are in your hands.

The Stormraven is great for stopping mobile armies in their tracks. If someone tries to maneuver around/away from you, just throw your stormraven/assault unit at them, then they have to deal with you (which most times they cant) then you can surround and bottle up even the quickest armies.

Now, here is an example of my typical loadout
-10x Death Company
---6x BP/CCW, 3x PW, 1x PF
-Death. Co. Dread
---Blood Talons

Very few things can go toe to toe with this unit and still be of any effectiveness afterwards. By using the tactics i have described, one should be able to gain that mobility they may be looking for, or find that way to get stuff into the fray.

The most important thing is, however, that this is not the only way to do it, just one of the many. So i encourage you, go out, get one or proxy one, and just try it out. You may find that you have just discovered your new bread and butter!
mmm, toast
Now, a lot that I know about the Stormraven and its many tactics i picked up from  Green Blow Fly over at Terminus Est, a great blog about DoA Blood Angels and Stormraven tactica, so you may wanna check it out. I know, a bit long winded, and I apologize, but hopefully y'all gained something out of it. Until next time, OMNOMNOM TOAST!