Hola my dudes and dudettes, Scott Horras “Heresy” here with my first article in a completely unplanned series that may or may not get off the ground: Doubles Therapy. Where Katie, Mother of Corgi, Rightful Queen of the Horras Household, First of Her Name and I explore and strengthen our relationship through Ham.
The Killa Kanz Event
On November 2nd, my Better Half and I attended the Killa Kanz 2019 event at Redcap’s Corner Gaming Emporium in Philadelphia, PA. Killa Kanz is an annual event hosted at Redcap’s Corner in early November by Colin K. and Joe K. (not related), who notably have also both partnered on hosting the Narrative Events at the NOVA Open.
As you may have noticed, there ins’t really a ‘doubles meta’ for 40k. Or at least, not one that I’m aware of. So if you’re looking to this report to try and help you build lists to help you absolutely crush your local doubles scene, you may want to check out another source of doubles tournament reports… but if you find any, let me know. Don’t worry though! I’m always absolutely going to be trying my best to bring the most abusive thing I can to any given format!
Before we begin, a couple of important format notes on Killa Kanz: Killa Kanz is a charity event first and foremost which is super rad and results in some ultra chill vibes. The hallmark of the Killa Kanz and its namesake is that, for every dollar (50 cents depending on quantity) or canned good you donate to the event, you receive a ticket. These tickets can be spent throughout the event for what amounts to event-specific stratagems. For you shrewd readers out there about to ask — yes, it’s a shamelessly donate-to-win event. But all of the donated dollars and cans go to Philabundance at the conclusion of the event so you can feel great about rerolling every single save and shot on your Castellan Knight.
Here’s a quick rundown of the ‘Killa Kanz’ Event-specific Stratagems:
Note: with the exception of the Re-roll, each of these may only be used once per battle
- (1 Kan) Re-roll – The classic. Re-roll a dice. Note that this can be used at any time, even before the game begins
- (20 Kanz) Have gun, will travel – Used at the beginning of deployment. Add a single unit worth up to 150 points to your army for this battle. They are added in an Auxiliary Support Detachment.
- (4 Kanz) They’ve gone to plaid! – Use at the start of the charge phase. Choose a friendly non-TITANIC unit; double its charge rolls this phase. This unit may declare charges up to 24″ this during this phase.
- (3 Kanz) Some call me Tim – Use at the beginning of deployment. Choose a PSYKER model from your army. That model knows all psychic powers from one discipline which they would normally have access to.
- (5 Kanz) Kan-Fu Hustle – Use at the start of the fight phase. Choose a friendly non-TITANIC unit; that unit may reroll all failed hit and wound rolls for the duration of this fight phase.
- (6 Kanz) Can’t touch this! – Use at the start of the shooting of fight phase. Choose a friendly non-TITANIC unit; that unit may either treat its armor save as an invulnerable save, or gain a 4+ invulnerable save for the duration of this phase.
- (15 Kanz) Game over man, game over! – Use at the start of the shooting phase. Choose a point on the battlefield visible to your warlord. Roll a dice for each unit within D6″ of that point, subtracting 1 if that unit has the CHARACTER keyword; on a 4+ that unit suffers 3D3 mortal wounds. This may not be used during the first battle round
These stratagems change from year to year, but one thing about this event is super consistent: BRING SOME KANZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ so you can use these super slick game-breaking stratagems and also feed the hungry.
Other than that, Killa Kanz 2019 used pretty much straight-up NOVA missions, with the exception of one modified deployment. There’s already been plenty written about the NOVA missions, so I’m going to go light on those elements for y’all.
Katie and I brought her Eldar and my brand new Space Marines. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get our hands on the event packet ahead of time, which caused a little bit of a snafu after our first game. Originally, we had Katie’s army organized into two Patrols; one Uthwe with Eldrad, a Warlock, and Rangers, and another Alaitoc Patrol with the rest of her units. Unfortunately, this was not a legal army for her according to the event restrictions, so we had to decant her army into a single Alaitoc Battalion, which is reflected in the army list below. We adjusted by demoting Eldad to a normal Farseer, dropping a single Shining Spear, and picking up another Ranger squad. That being said, this probably ended up making our army overall stronger. We ended up using Some call me Tim, Unparalleled Mastery (with our newfound CP), and an appropriate amount of Kanz to turn her Farseer into an effective budget Eldad.
If I told you I had a gameplan, I’d be lying to you. I had stayed up painting through the night until 6:00 AM before the event so… I was… barely functional in peak performance mode for slamming ‘hams. To demonstrate to My Better Half just how ready I was to slam a full day of ‘hams, I cracked the eggs weshe was going to scramble for breakfast directly into the garbage can before handing her a bowl full of eggshells. I don’t remember doing this at all, but I can assure you if it did really happen the way it has been retold to me, it was some sort of 4-dimensional motivational message about us not needing breakfast before we left to test our relationship on the Warhammer tables for a full 9+ hours.
In reality, well-slept Scott was looking out for us when he madecoordinated with The Moon of His Life to craft this beautiful list, as there was some semblance of game plan baked into this thing. The basic idea being:
- Go first. <—- THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT
- Buff up the Shining Spears
- Kill stuff with preposterous amounts of shooting
Is this a good game plan? No. Would I recommend anyone bring a list that absolutely super must go first to a serious event? No. Are we completely and utterly screwed if we go second? Probably. Is this whole “go first or be in a tough spot” something we should maybe get used to in this Space Marine Meta? I think so.
But fear not, dear reader! I have recently been informed by all of Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, every single cable news network, and Spongebob that there’s a very simple solution to all of your problems in this utterly lethal Space Marine Meta:
Scott and Katie's Army - Click to expand Iron Hams Patrol (0 CP) Iron Father Guy Feirros Alaitoc Battalion (+5 CP) Farseer (Warlord)
Primaris Lieutenant (Warlord) – Stalker Bolt Rifle
6x Infiltrators – Helix Adept
2x Repulsor Executioner – Heavy Laser Destroyer, Ironhail Heavy Stubber, Icarus Rocket Pod
5x Dire Avengers
8x Shining Spears – Withdraw
2x Crimson Hunter Exarch – Star Cannons, Hawkeye
Iron Hams Patrol (0 CP)
Iron Father Guy Feirros
Alaitoc Battalion (+5 CP)
For each round we’ll cover the following:
- The Competition – Details of our opponents’ armies
- The Mission – Details of mission and deployment
- The Plan – how we aimed to play out the game and target priorities.
- The Summary – how the game played out at a high level
- The Takeaways – points of interest and things we learned from the game
- The Score – our score after the game.
Round 1 – T’au and Primaris Marines
Carlo and John's List - Click to expand Opponents: Carlo (T’au) and John (Primaris) Bork Bork Vanguard Coldstar Commander (Warlord) – ATS, 3xMissile Pods, 2xDrones Bork Bork Auxilary Support (Kan Strat) Coldstar Commander – ATS, 3xMissile Pods Iron Hands Spearhead Captain (Warlord) – Chapter Master
Y’Vahra – 2x Drones
2x 8 Drones
3x Crisis Suits – ATS, 3x Plasma Rifles, 2x Drones
5x Intercessors – Stalker Bolt Rifles, Power Fist
3x Eliminators – Bolt Sniper Rifle
3x Eliminators – Bolt Sniper Rifle
Redemptor Dreadnought – Heavy Onslaught Gatling Cannon, Onslaught Gatling Cannon
Repulsor Executioner – Heavy Laser Destroyer, Ironhail Heavy Stubber
Opponents: Carlo (T’au) and John (Primaris)
Bork Bork Vanguard
Coldstar Commander (Warlord) – ATS, 3xMissile Pods, 2xDrones
Bork Bork Auxilary Support (Kan Strat)
Coldstar Commander – ATS, 3xMissile Pods
Iron Hands Spearhead
Captain (Warlord) – Chapter Master
NOVA: Scenario 1 – Invasion
Deployment: Dawn of War
Carlo’s got a nasty Y’Vahra and John’s got his own Executioner. For Katie and I, we knew we were probably going to be smooth sailing so long as we could knock those two units over with the bulk of our forces intact. Given time constraints no clocks, and the fact that it was a doubles game doubles games take significantly longer than singles, we went with Endgame scoring to make sure we could rack up a large number of points even if the game ended fairly early. It’s worth noting that, while I love clocks. I don’t think they’d work well at all in a doubles format, so the lack of clock isn’t a knock on the event, just something we had considered when choosing our objectives.
Given the terrain and deployment. If we didn’t go first, we were prepared to lose an Executioner and probably a Crimson Hunter. That would obviously put us at a huge disadvantage. We were going into the event pretty much resigned to the fact that if we went second to a list with legitimate firepower, we were probably hosed. Sometimes it truly do be that way.
- Moment of Bloodshed
- Marked for Death – Y’Vahra, Repulsor Executioner, Crisis Suits, Supressors
- Old School
- Strike the Rank and File
- Marked for Death – 2xRepulsor Executioner, 2xCrimson Hunter Exarchs
- Old School
Being a NOVA mission, we had alternating deployment. Katie and I had very few units to deploy by design so we were going to be able to get a +1 to our first turn roll.
We deployed emphasizing the right side of the board, with the Spears center, the Executioners to the right of them, and a Crimson Hunter anchor at each extreme. If I recall correctly Carlo, ended up putting down a squad of drones pretty early on our right which prompted our decision to deploy in the manner. We wanted to make sure the Executioners could get their secondary guns into range of the drone mobs to make sure we squeezed out every bit of value from those two tanks as possible.
Carlo and John didn’t really intermix their forces. Carlo deployed to our right, and John deployed everything of his our left behind a building. With his intention being to protect his Executioner from getting destroyed if they didn’t manage to pull first turn.
Katie and I got first turn. We immediately swung the board to the right, away from John’s marine battle pile. We wanted to try and fight this army piecemeal by killing the isolated T’au elements first, and then turning the corner all at once to get concentrate on the Marine force. Our first turn shooting went pretty well, we were unable to kill all of Carlo’s Riptide, but he used a Kan to re-roll every single failed Savior Protocol roll, Shield Drone save, and Shield Drone invulnerable save. That being said, we were able to clear out his drones, which ended up being a big win for us. Katie’s buffed up Spears (with Conceal, Protect, and Fortune) dove into the mob for some extra melee as well.
Carlo and John answered by diving the Y’Varha diving into our planes and tanks, while having the marine pour everything they could into the Spears. This resulted in a dead Crimson Hunter from the Y’Varha, and no real damage of note to the Spears.
Our Turn 2, we swing the spears into the Marine mob to disrupt their movement towards our Repulsors, and kill as many Primaris bodies as they could, which they did extraordinarily well at… Katie really shined this turn as she picked up the rest of the Primaris bodies on the board, and wrapped up a Lieutenant for some shooting protection. On the other hand, I poured all of my shooting from both Repulsors into Carlo’s naked Y’Varha… leaving it on 2 wounds at the end of the shooting phase. Many rerolls on both side were involved in this result. I charge it with my lead Ironstone’d Repulsor and Irondaddi, in an attempt to finish it off in the charge phase. Due to some good Overwatch, and some horrible saving throws, the Repulsor took 12 wounds on the way in. Yes, a great many more Kanz were involved in this result. Irondaddi fails to kill the Y’Varha in combat.
The Y’Varha backs out and blows up the Failpulsor, and Carlo’s suits drop down and do a few wounds to Irondaddi. John is really only able to fire his Heavy Laser Destroyer from his Repulsor and attempts to swat away some shinning spears with his Dreadnought. The Crimson Hunter Exarch survives, and the Spears lose 1 or 2 bikes.
On our Turn 3, Katie’s character ball comes and finishes the job that Repulsors could not, and smites down the Y’Varha. Between shooting and Spears melee, she is able to destroy John’s Executioner, and wrap up the Dreadnought. While my Executioner is relegated to Crisis Suit and Coldstar cleanup. We end the game in a tabling on Turn 4.
Rerolls are bae. We had literally hundreds of tickets thrown at us by Carlo and John that was extremely difficult to overcome. We definitely showed up with our own pile of cash to reroll everything that we thought would be neccessary, but never expected any absolute mad lad throw Kanz at rerolling every single roll relating to drones and his Y’Varha. That being said, our boi Carlo was the guy to do it, and you know what… it felt great the entire time because I knew all that money was going somewhere good.
Despite the event shenanigans, this game played out about what we thought it would. We were able to go first and start doing work on diminishing targets that threatened our firepower. If we had gone second, I doubt we could pulled off a win here because that invincible Y’Varha may have been able to destroy an Executioner right off the bat which probably would have snowballed into a tabling on our end instead of the other way around.
Scott and Katie: 33 – John and Carlo: 8
Round 2 – Mechanized Eldar and Necrons
Army List - Click to expand Opponents: Ben (Necrons) and Jake (Eldar) Sautekh Spearhead Lord Alaitoc Battalion Farseer Skyrunner (Warlord)
2x Annihilation Barge
2x Doomsday Ark
2x Doom Croissant
20x Guardians – 2xShuriken Cannon Platforms
2x Fire Prisms
1x Nightspinner (Event Stratagem Reinforcement)
1x Crimson Hunter Exarch – Bright Lances
Opponents: Ben (Necrons) and Jake (Eldar)
Farseer Skyrunner (Warlord)
NOVA: Scenario 2 – Invasion
Deployment: Hammer and Anvil
Much like the last one, this one was going to be a shootout sorry it’s just the list we brought this time. We really have no range issues to speak of here, and we were able to pick the side of the board with all of the Line of Sight blocking terrain. They’ve got a bunch of tanks and a plane, we’ve got a few tanks and a plane… shoot them dead, and we win. Easy as that. Ideally, we can kill a Fire Prism to get rid of the Linked Fire threat right away, and catch the Crimson Hunter with Katie’s Crimson Hunter as all of our vehicles have fly. Past that, use the weirdly greater mobility on the Repulsors to keep the Doomsday Arks from firing on them.
Lastly, buff up the Spears, and shove them in their face to pull as much firepower as possible off of our damage dealers.
- Moment of Bloodshed
- Marked for Death – 2xDoom Croissant, 2xFire Prisms
- Old School
- Marked for Death – Shining Spears, Infiltrators, Dire Avengers, Warlock
- Old School
Katie and I more or less deployed our entire army in a centrally-located ruin in our deployment zone. It was large enough to at least grant both Repulsors cover and hide her Spears and characters. Having little to no Line of Sight blocking terrain on their side of the board, Ben and Jake more or less deployed their tanks straight across the back line of their deployment zone, with Doomsday Arks being on our left, and their Fire Prisms on our right.
Ben and Jake decided to let us go first. We promptly destroyed a Fire Prism and Doom Croissant with the Repulsors. Jake had given their Crimson Hunter an Invulnerable Save for the turn using the event stratagem. Katie destroyed a Doomsday Ark, and wounded another with her Crimson Hunters. She buffed up the shining spears and advanced them as quickly as possible up the center of the board. On the bottom of the turn Ben and Jake poured all of their shooting into the Spears, killing 2 of them. Shooting -3 to hit buffed shining spears is tough business fellas.
Top of 2, I tag the Doom Croissant and the Fire Prism with the Heavy Laser Destroyers, while Katie finished the wounded Doomsday Ark and wounded the other. The remaining Shining spears charge the Crimson Hunter, leaving it with 2 wounds remaining. In their turn, Jake managed to Jinx and Doom the Spears, which again with copious amounts of rerolls allows them to kill 6 of them, and wound one of Katie’s Crimson Hunters.
At the top of 3, Jake brings up that he would like us to agree to end the game at the end of this turn due to time concerns, as we had 20 or so minutes left in the round. I tell him that I’m uncomfortable with that because of their large number of Objective Secured deep strikers, bottom of the turn, and endgame objectives. I eventually asked Colin the TO if an even number of turns was always guaranteed to both players, with this Jake agreed to a turn 4 so long as we quickly resolved our turn 3. Katie and I rip through the third turn in about 3 minutes flat, forgoing all movement except for her Crimson Hunters, and manage to destroy everything remaining on the board except for Ben’s Lord, and Jake’s Farseer Skyrunner.
Bottom of 3 Jake brings down his Rangers onto two naked objectives in their backfield, and charges and kills some Dire Avengers which he had failed to wrap holding one of our backfield objectives. Our turn 4 consisted of shooting a Ranger squad off of one of the backfield objectives, and dumping all of our shooting and charging into the Guardians on our leftmost backfield objective. With Celestial Shield, and Insane Bravery and probably 40 to 50 more rerolls the Guardians held that objective with about 6 Guardians remaining. With the bottom of their turn Jake and Ben cover their backfield objectives with their characters. With some jaw clenching score calculation, Katie and I pull out the win by a single point, by scoring relatively enough on our secondaries and tertiary to overcome a 2 to 4 endgame objective differential in Jake and Ben’s favor.
In hindsight, with Jake and Ben being able to flip our objective with their Guardian bomb and being able to survive our shooting, turn 4 did not end up effecting the score of the game whatsoever we weren’t able to pull out Moment of Bloodshed on turn 4 anyways. That being said, I’m really glad that Jake and Ben were willing to go to turn 4. I think I’ve talked bout how much I love clocks in the past on Goon because of the fact that it guarantees natural conclusions to your games. While clocks are almost never going to work in a doubles format, this game would have been one I thought about for a few days afterward because for whatever reason… 3 turn 40k games just don’t sit right with me at all. Feel free to disagree with me if I’m being a giant baby about game length. I know I’m a bit weird about it.
Really the only thing I would’ve done differently in this game if I could play it again is play faster. If we had turns 5 and 6, it was abundantly clear that we had a tabling lined up. I think Katie and I got a bit of goal line fever after our first two turns in the game having eliminated every major threat to our armies and having effectively undamaged Repulsors and Crimson Hunters to wrap up the rest of the game with. All in all, I’m not surprised that it happened. It’s been 2 months since my last event and I feel like that one of the most frequent lessons I have to relearn, and one I’ve had to keep in mind in both hamm and sports: Never get comfortable with a lead; win more.
Scott and Katie: 23 – Ben and Jake: 22
Round 3 -Death Guard and Raptors (Raven Guard Successors)
Sam and Nick's List - Click to expand Opponents: Sam (Death Guard) and Nick (Raptors) Death Guard Vanguard Chaos Lord – Jump Pack *budget Chainlord Raptors Battalion Techmarine – Conversion Beamer
7x Plague Marines
5x Plague Marines
2x Foul Blightspawn
Contemptor Dreadnought – Butcher Cannons(Event Stratagem Reinforcement)
Land Speeder Storm
Opponents: Sam (Death Guard) and Nick (Raptors)
Death Guard Vanguard
Chaos Lord – Jump Pack *budget Chainlord
Techmarine – Conversion Beamer
NOVA: Scenario 3 – Confrontation
Deployment: Modified Search and Destroy
Fitting with the theme of this event, Katie and I were still pretty convinced we wanted to go first in this match. We weren’t overly concerned about the firepower coming out of this list to start, but we figured it was almost always better to go first with our extremely skewed list. The modified Search and Destroy deployment meant that each team had two separate 12″ x 18″ deployment boxes diagonal from each other. This meant that you could split your army diagonally across the board if you so chose.
I was in quite a funk at this point because of literally staying up all night painting the night before. So about the only thing that was able to spill out of my mouth this game as far as pre game discussion goes was, “Those Plaguemarines have some mortal wound shenanigans with grenades… so we should just kill them so your spears don’t have to worry about it”. Otherwise, there wasn’t a crazy amount of shooting to threaten the Repulsors or the Crimson Hunters, so we could just grind down the list if the game went longer.
- Moment of Bloodshed
- Marked for Death – Storm Talon, Rhino, Land Speeder Storm, Plagueburst Crawler
- Old School
- Moment of Bloodshed
- Old School
Both teams chose endgame objective scoring and as is typical for the NOVA packet, we had alternating deployment. We started deploying some of Katie’s stuff in the top left corner of the board, with the intention of maybe getting Sam and Nick to split their forces. Ideally that would’ve happened and we could Phantasm once to move her Spears and casters were she really wanted them, or leave them in the protected corner to help weather the first round of shooting. Sam and Nick however, did not take the bait made and it pretty clear early on that they intended to deploy their entire force in the top right 12″x18″ deployment corner. I responded by building Fort Repulsor in the bottom right deployment corner.
Katie and I got to go first, and Phantasm her Spears over to our corner of the board. Our first turn consisted of diving the buffed up Spears into Sam and Nick’s battle pile. As is tradition. We used the event specific stratagems to give her double charge range and reroll hits and wounds in combat for the phase. Between that and our shooting we were able to kill all of the Plaguemarines, the Rhino, and damage the Redemptor. With her combat, Katie was able to boop all of the major sources of shooting. On their turn Sam and Nick primarily focused on killing the Spears with their combat power, while clearing my Infiltrators from the center of the board, and moving the Plagueburst Crawler up the center.
Turn 2, Katie and I picked up the Storm Talon, Redemptor, Contemptor, Land Speeder Storm, and some Scouts. On their turn, Sam began continued his Plagueburst Crawler, Bloatdrone and Characters up center field while Nicks Aggressors and Sam’s Foul Blightspawn killed all of the Spears except for the Exarch. If I recall correctly, there wasn’t much shooting coming out of their army at this point so I don’t think they were able to apply much meaningful shooting to anything.
On our third turn we began switching gears and focusing on killing Nick and Sam’s board control. Katie ended up aiming both of her Crimson Hunter’s at Nicks Infiltrators that were controlling a center Objective while I aimed my Heavy Laser Destroyers at the Plagueburst Crawler, failing to kill it. Turn 3 Sam was able to line up a charge with his Crawler, Bloatdrone, and Diet Chainlord onto my rightmost Repulsor, killing it in a single round of combat with a flurry of brutal mortal wounds from the Chainlord.
The last turn consisted of us finishing the Crawler, Bloatdrone, and objective holding Infiltrators with our Crimson Hunters and remaining Repulsor. Sam and Nick fell onto their objectives, shot off 4 out of 5 Dire Avengers from our top left objective, and shot my Warlord in the face with their Eliminators for good measure. We tied on primary, and Katie and I took the game on Secondary and Tertiary scoring.
It was a pretty typical game in the thunderdome, we both just lined up our armies and let loose as soon as we could. If Katie and I were playing a little better, we probably could’ve held back the Spears for a turn or two and reduced their army through Repulsor and Crimson Hunter shooting before diving them, but we had no idea how long the game was going to go. I did have a pretty major misplay this game by letting the Diet Chainlord merch an entire Repulsor more or less by himself. I definitely fell asleep at the wheel and leaned a bit too hard into the Repulsor’s -2 to charge rule, combined with Iron Hamm over watch and allowed myself to get lazy. I like to think that if I had gotten a legitimate night sleep that I wouldn’t have made that mistake, but I can’t say for certain… maybe I’m just bad at this game.
Scott and Katie: 24 – Sam and Nick: 18
Katie and I won the event with the Best Battle Score, Hobby Score, and Best Overall. Sam and Nick won “Player’s Choice” aka: The Real Best Painted, and Ben and Jake from our second game came in second with Battle, Hobby, and Overall Score.
There’s not a whole lot to say other than that I was happy to finish the day undefeated. Frankly, I was more happy about our Hobby Score being so high because of the amount of blood, sweat, and tears lots of them that went into my Repulsors the week before. Killa Kanz is always a ton of fun and Katie and I will definitely be there next year. Killa Kanz has a bit of a magical intersection of charity, 40hamms, comradery, and competition for Katie and I. It ends up being the perfect timing after NOVA for some painting goals and a good event to kick off the winter event-going season.
Killa Kanz 2019 had a draw of 14 Doubles Teams and a total donation of: 650 Canned Goods, and $1127, which works out to an average of 23 Kanz AND $40 per player. Killa Kanz is a true force of good in the world and I’m elated to be able to participate in it every year.
If I haven’t made it clear, there’s something special about charity 40k hams events, and I encourage anyone reading this to make a big effort to support charity events in the hobby if you have the means. It was nice to get a small amount of score credit out of this event, but I have to say — and I really do mean it this time — that at Killa Kanz 2019, the real prize was the Kanz all we all donated along the way.