Clash of the Titans

So I attended a great 2 day 5 game 1850 tourney over the bank holiday weekend called Clash of the Titans.

Let me first say that this was an excellent event thanks to the combination of the number of people that attended, the venue and the quality of the other players there – and by quality I mean quality of character, not having mad 40k skillz!

I took a list that was considered not too dirty as I wanted to test a couple of things in a competitive environment, namely: Many small units of Thunderwolf Cavalry (MSU TWC) and the Ulrik firebase!

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My list 

CAD – Codex: Space Wolves

HQ1 – Ulrik the Slayer, Warlord [145]

HQ2 – Rune Priest (60), Helm of Durfast (20) [80]

Elite1 – 5 Wolf Scouts (70), Sniper Rifles (5) [75]

Elite2 – Iron Priest (55), Thunderwolf Mount (50), Bolt Pistol (-), 2 Cyberwolves (30) [135]

Elite3 – Iron Priest (55), Thunderwolf Mount (50), Bolt Pistol (-), 2 Cyberwolves (30) [135]

Troop1 – 5 Bloodclaws (60), Stormwolf (215), 2 TL Multi-Meltas (20) [295]

Troop2 – 5 Bloodclaws (60) [60]

Fast1 – 3 Thunderwolf Cavalry (120), Bolt Pistol + Chainsword (-) [120]

Fast2 – 3 Thunderwolf Cavalry (120), Bolt Pistol + Chainsword (-) [120]

Fast3 – 3 Thunderwolf Cavalry (120), Bolt Pistol + Chainsword (-) [120]

Heavy1 – 6 Long Fangs (90), 5 Lascannon (100) [190]

Heavy2 – Predator (75), 2 Lascannon Sponsons (40), Autocannon (-) [115]

Heavy3 – Predator (75), 2 Lascannon Sponsons (40), Autocannon (-) [115]

Fortification: Stronghold Assault

Imperial Bastion (50), Quad-Gun (50), 2 Barricades (20) [145]

Total: 1850 points

The Tactics

The Ulrik Firebase was the bastion at the back end of my deployment zone usually hugging the table edge with a barricade on either side. Barricades would provide 4+ cover to a pred on each side.  Lascannon Long Fangs and sniper Scouts inside and on the battlements.  Ulrik would join the squad inside and the Helm of Durfast Rune Priest would attach himself to the unit on top and man the Quad-Gun.  If facing a lot of Monsterous Creatures the snipers would instead go inside to give monster hunter to them via Ulrik.

Because of Ulrik this Firebase ALL had Prefered Enemy (Everything) from Ulrik, a 6″ bubble which extended from the hull off the Bastion. Furthermore there was a 12″ stubborn bubble emanating also.

The MSU TWC had the options of starting off all separate or joining together and some of them could be held in reserve if desired.  They were playing off their inherent value for money at 40 points per base model.

So the idea would be I would shoot stuff like crazy to whittle down my opponents, let them come to me if they were better at combat or go to them otherwise.  TWC would be so feared they would take all the firepower (fine), leaving my Blood Claws and StormGrr to sweep in turn 2+ to claim objectives etc.

Post Game Thoughts

The Firebase was epic.  Truly.  Ulrik via his rerolls probably caused more deaths than all the TWC put together!  He was easily MVP.  Granted the whole Firebase costs 865 points so it should be capable of doing something.

In all but one of my games the Bastion itself was largely ignored, with it only getting destroyed once by some lucky Wraithknight turn 1 D (using previous codex).  The sheer volume of lascannons with PE ruined most things.  The preds being preds were ignored with 4 deaths the whole touny.

The Rune Priest was lackluster TBH.  I rolled him on Divination and found that prescience was largely duplicative considering BS4, PE and the already twin-linked Quad-Gun.  The other buffs were so short range that there was rarely a good target.  Furthermore, against any psyker heavy army I was just dispelled for fun – Demons!

Whilst on paper the ignores cover, twin-linked, prefered enemy, S7 AP4 quad-gun looks great, there were many armies that just weren’t scared of it. Yes it wrecked Venoms.  Yes it kept Eldar jet bikes 48″+ away from me. Yes it scared my opponents.  However really it did nothing of any note. Snap shooting at ground targets sucks.  There are not many fliers in the meta.  And hiding from it with your squishy objective takers was too easy. I consider the RP+QG to have been a sub-par use of 130 points – especially when the Bastion blew up!

The only good thing about the RP was the deny rolls however.  IF only i’d taken a psychic hood and the whole Firebase would have had a 4+ deny which would have helped a lot against all those flickering fires, melta beams and Eldritch Storms hitting me!

The MSU TWC were good and bad.  Because they were bare bones I quickly found them to be no hard enough to take most things on. Consequently the first 2 turns were spent with me hiding them near to my deployment zone and using them as a counter attack force.  This they excelled at actually.  However, they NEED storm shields.  Their regular attacks rock a S5 rending so my intention in future is to give them all a shield. 7 1/2 points for a 3++ per wound is well worth it.  Their ability to Look Out Sir wounds all over the place was brilliant too as I was able to save so many models from death with this.  THC combined with Thunderwolf Iron Priests and Cyberwolves are brilliant but this is nothing new.

The fear factor of the TWC really played into my hands though as my opponents were chucking everything at them leaving my Firebase unscathed. Played reservedly they proved very resilient, T5 and 3+ with 4+ cover when not rushed straight into the fray was tougher for my opponents to deal with that I expected.

Oh and IP Runic Armour rocks.  They can at times tank like a boss.

My second MVP was surprisingly the StormGrr.  Now whilst it did not kill a lot, the fact that it was an Objective Secured flier straight out won me two games that I would have lost if it hadn’t have been for this surprising little devil with last turn objective grabbing/stealing!  This was partly because my opponents didn’t factor this into their plans.

Weaknesses

It became apparent to me that this list had some significant weakness above what I have already mentioned above.

No first turn scalpel – In most games you can really use a T1 pod of plasma/melta death in your opponent’s deployment zone to get that scary tank / Wraith Knight / Keeper of Secrets.

Limited access to the backfield – You need units that can rock up in your opponent’s backfield unopposed to clear him off objectives.  I’m thinking outflanking, deep striking etc.  The TWC just didn’t get that far without hitting something on the way.

Demons – My 2 losses were both to demons.  Some combination of Plague Drones, Heralds, Flying Demon Princes, Keeper of Secrets and Screamers in my face with cheap backfield objective hunters in the form of Nurglings or infinitely summoned Horrors!  I got totally owned from T1 on both occassions.  It was too hard to hurt them through their invisibility (even comped so you can only hit on a 6), Endurance (4+ FNP), Shrouded+jinking 2+ cover, toe in terrain 2+ cover and 2++ rerollable Tzeench invulnerable saves.  Other than getting into his back field I do not know at this time how to best face demons and I will probably ask for help on this in another thread.

+++++

All in all a brilliant tourney which saw me firmly beating a Dark Eldar ravager, venom, jet bike, deepstriking winged haywire / melta things and raiders with Slith and blasterborn. A Deathwing Terminator and Landraider army, a tactical victory over an Eldar triple Wraith Knight with Serpents list and losing to the aforementioned two demon players.

All the players were great fun to play with and I must apologise again to Matt Edmonds who had to wait 30 minutes for me to turn up for my game LATE!  I apologised at the time by letting him wipe me……… er yeah.

Also a thanks to Sam who introduced me to Turkish Pizza when 10 of us went for food together in Finchley after the 1st day of gaming and to Overlordian Jason who aptly inferred that I was a ball bag when I suggested he may have enjoyed the lamb testicles on the menu.

Thanks again to Titan Chris who organised the even at Titans Wargaming Club and thanks to everyone else there.

See you all next time.

Be sure to check out the Titan’s facebook page where they have posted a lot of fantastic pictures from the weekend.  Chris does some amazing work that beats much of what even Visions created! My StormGrr bearing down on Paulie’s Dark Eldar Raider full of Slith for example!

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Procrastination, my destiny…

“Everything changed with the arrival of the Traveller…”

Yes all hobby has come to a grinding halt due to my shiny new Xbox One!

I’m hooked playing Destiny even though it’s not a great game – where’s the social element Bungie?!

Currently blasting through undecided as the Warlock and Titan, hopefully it isn’t too long of a story so I can get back to the hobby.

Doesn’t help that I can’t make a game for nearly 2 weeks so there goes some urgency!

Back to it…

Escalation League: Pakeshi Sector Maximus

tank-winter

No one remembers how the conflict started at Haven but we all know what happened. The fall of one planet triggered a new war at Maximus.  Something that looked like an insignificant clash of small skirmishing bands soon escalated into full sector conflict.  For some mysterious reason all major forces are driven to this cold, frozen world.  At this time the planet is just about habitable.  Its equator has what is best described as bad winter conditions; its poles require years of training to operate in.  This is the largest planet in the Pakeshi System and is a hive world.  There are 5 hive cities and very little other than wilderness between them…the-overlords

So at my local gaming club The Overlords in London we’re starting a new Escalation League next month!

The league has a blog on wordpress here.

This will be my inspiration to paint up a very wolfy army full of Thunder, Fenrisian and Cyber Wolves!  This army:

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Champions of Fenris (500)

Rune Priest – Runic Armour, Rune Axe, Bike

Iron Priest – Thunderwolf Mount, Bolt Pistol, 2x Cyberwolves

5x Wolf Guard – Bikes

3x Thunderwolves – 1x Storm Shield

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Inspired by the new supplement I think this stands to be a great fun army to play with the sheer ferocity these fanged furies can bring down upon their foes!

I’ve clearly got a lot of work ahead of me and for some reason I started with my HQ, I usually leave these till last but oh well.

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Note the icicles on the base thanks to “GirlPainting” on YouTube here.  Love it…

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Still got to do his company markings and work out how to use snow flock but there’s time!

Also can’t wait to paint this guy up:

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Oh and for those tactical geniuses out there amongst you, check out this special rule for the league…

Veterans of the Frozen Wastes

Fighting for a long time in winter environment made those warriors capable of developing their logistics and combat skills to the extraordinary level.

  • every unit with winter theme base modelling and painting scheme gets re-roll for Difficult Terrain tests;


MFDTEBW7F23QLNSFISVBZ3TG765NYSZO

More information about The Overlords can be found on their Facebook page here!

Shadowsun and the trials of painting white!

So this is the result of what started out as a desire to paint a Fire Warrior combined with providing my Tau playing friend – Andy – with something he can use.

The white with red details is his personal colour scheme, quite striking on a dark table but what a ball-ache to paint!

White is the DEVIL!

Wary of building up from my usual black primer I went with The Fang – a dark blue – and built up with layers of grey until I got to the primary white of the armour which is white with the tiniest drop of grey in it to make it “off-white” and to provide a contrast for my pure white edge highlighting.

 

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Now Shadowsun has a lot of nooks and crannies between the plates of her armour.  At first I left them black but because there were so many and the contrast with the black it made her look like a cartoon which wasn’t the look I was going for.  So I filled in some of these nooks with the off-white I was using and instead gave her a very thin purple wash.  I hoped this colour would provide an ethereal edge to the model which might suggest the stealth armour/femininity.

IMAG0689The usual fun was had on the base (my favourite bit atm) with fallen leaves, green lychen washed brown/dark green (to remove uniformity) and a light sprinkling of a yellow turf – all from Basecrafts.

I also used the Nihilakh Oxide again on the thing she is standing on but found the blue too bright after application so I toned it down with a black wash.

 

This little red markings were fun to paint.  I googled “Tau symbols” for my inspiration and went to town.  I even managed to sneak my initials in there… Let’s see if Andy ever notices my mark haha!

Shasowsun TC
Oh and 100 points to anyone that knows which Lord thinks he decapitated her?!

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Thunderwolves Endure

Simple concept.

Thunderwolves with storm shields, Thunderlord with runic armour and storm shield, Rune Priest + Biomancy Endurance =

Rock hard unit crackling with Fenrisian killing power!

I finally ran these guys the other day and they rocked.  The 4+ FNP is amazing on TWC and lords.  Biomancy just helps so much if you can get this.  Also Lifeleach so they can regain wounds is worth a mention.

Your unit is 2+/3++/4+++FNP with the lord out front.  Now add champions of fenris too and get warlord trait 1 (reroll one failed save a turn) and you have:

One very dangerous Anvil.

And cheap(ish) too!

Now I ran a Rune Priest with a jump pack in the unit buffing it and we came across some difficult rules questions about how the jump pack member effects the movement and charging ability of the cavalry.  Basically one of the TWC had to charge through cover at one point and we decided that they lose fleet because not all members have it, but because the cavalry ignore terrain (no -2 modifier) and the jumppack does the same if used to assault, there was no negative to the charge range.

I wonder how this would work if Runey was on a bike?  I don’t think regular bikes ignore terrain.  White Scars however…

Tactical thoughts about Space Wolves/Champions of Fenris in 7th

So i’ve played a couple of games in 7th now with my new wolves and i’d like to share with you some of my thoughts so far.

  • Wolf Guard Battle Leader

Equipped with a thunderwolf mount, runic armour, storm shield and the Krakenbone sword, this gent is a potent character.  Coming in at 175 points he’s not ludicrous for cavalry with T5, W3, 2+/3++ with 4 attacks at WS6, S6, AP2, rending and preferred enemy (characters).  Having used him however you have to really remember that he is only S6 so don’t go wasting him against anything T5+ because he doesn’t have the attacks for it.  4 attacks is wanting in my opinion and whilst he makes a decent tank (especially if you can get the Warlord Trait allowing you to reroll a failed save) his killing potential is limited.  Do not allow Typhus to challenge him as I once did!  Send him after grubs… the real stuff of sagas!  Next i’ll be swapping him for the Thunderwolf Lord, runic, fist+claw combo for more attacks, -1 to my invuln save, +1 would and S10 when required.

  • Rune Priest

I tried this guy mastery level 2, runic armour and a hood for 120 points.  Taking Tempestas discipline I discovered very quickly that he is a short range unreliable nuker.  He NEEDS mobility and sat in a rhino didn’t cut it for me.  Put him on a bike and you might do well and if you take him in the standard codex consider the Helm of Durfast for the twin-linking and ignores cover.  Don’t expect too much from him like this however.  Next i’ll be playing him on a bike with biomancy buffing my thunderwolves.

 

  • Arjac Rockfist

I tried something silly with old Arjac, I ran him solo and teleported him into the fight!  Fortunately my opponent at the time (CSM) weren’t very shooty so he didn’t get shot to pieces instantly!  He did scatter too far away to use his hammer on arrival which was a real blow but then succeeded in running into combat with a hellbrute and smashing his face in.  Really needs to be in challenges because of the PE and mere 3 attacks base.  Next time i’m going to buy him a fast attack drop pod to guarantee the hammertime.

  • Lone Wolf

I played this guy in terminator armour with a storm shield, wolf claw and melta bomb deepstriking in for 70 points.  Scared the crap out of my opponent however he is only 2 attacks base so I wouldn’t be that bothered if I were facing him.  A wolf claw is designed to cut through infantry but with the mere 2 attacks you’re not going to be doing that very well and you cant run units down in your TDA so I could suggest the thunderhammer and send him hunting bigger things: vehicles, monsterous creatures and of course the ubiquitous tar pit.  I could see these guys being fun deepstriking in next to a locator beaconed drop pod, shame the wolves don’t teleport with him!

  • Grey Hunters

Ran as 10 hunters in a pod with 2x meltagun, close combat weapons, a wolf guard leader with combi melta for 233 points.  It’s great we can now drop 3 melta shots in our hunter pods but it’s still not a cert against armour.  6 plasma shots will be equally as awesome.  Without the banner now (no more rerolling 1s *sad face*) the unit has lost much of its durability and I still find them pathetic in combat against most things that get into combat. I used mine to pop a Land Raider which the contents of then wiped out the squad.  I’m leaning towards using them more for midfield objective holding with plasma taking advantage of obsec for the pod if in a Combined Arms Detachment (CAD).

  • Thunderwolves

I’ve only got 3 of these guys but I feel good about them especially now rending applies to all melee attacks even with a special weapon!  I think they all need stormshields even though people say you can position them so the enemy can’t target those without I find that your enemies are often capable of moving.  I would expect to take losses because people are scared of them so I will need to be buying more but there are so many wonderful options I can’t yet advise on all of them.  Powerfists are obviously immense for the S10 AP2 – I know there’s an argument for them being only S9 but its a crap one that will get FAQd out just like every time GW has written the rules for TWC.  The wolfclaw deserves a special mention for S6, rending with shred.  That’s a take all comers weapon on a 4A model if a bit pricey.  Some friends of mine are suggesting all power mauls for S7 AP4 rending or S8 with Harald, sounds great we’ll have to see about that one.  The big question is to run them cheap or not.  I’m leaning towards large squads with a couple of powerfists and all stormshields.

  • Predator

I’ve tried the tri-las pattern now that it’s cheaper for us – 140 points.  I think this is a “meh” unit; nothing special.  It doesn’t provide enough shots for a serious threat and many things you’ll be shooting at that range will have a cover save so there goes half your shots potentially to “aiming between opposing models”.  I think you need more mobility on this kind of weapon or use melta.

  • Longfangs

Only played the missile/lascannon variants and I feel the same about these as I do the predator above.  I feel we do anti-tank better in melta/melee range.  I’m looking forward however to trying the anti-infantry options (plasma cannons and heavy bolters) maybe supported by Ulric for the PE bubble when I can be bothered painting more power armour!

 

A modelling life story from birth to death, grown from an inexperienced fingerpainting adolescent into the most powerful wargamer in the world. Dare I choose the path of righteousness or dedicate my brush to evil?!