Gunum Presents: Hear Me out, Cyle! The Hogs’ Road to LVO

These Little Piggies are Going to Vegas

Hey everyone! Gunum here and we are getting close to the big show. The big bamboozie. The Superbowl of the 40k Season.  The start of the true New Year. The Las Vegas Open! This will be my… 6th?  Las Vegas open I have attended. I’ve brought all kinds of lists from 26 inferno pistol Blood Angels, 120 Hormagaunts Tyranids, and my big finish as Khorne Daemonking with my meta* doggo block. Every single year the sounder of Warhogs makes their yearly pilgrimage to the city of American lights to finally hone our drinking skills and show how we have all developed in the game.

This year, for the big pig fans keeping track at home, the Hogs to look out for are as follows:

Ryan Olson #66 ITC

Nicolas Weiss#106 ITC

Cyle Thompson #122 ITC (Currently playing for #1 Admech.)

AND ME!!! Chase Garber. (Pay no attention to the factions I’ve played. Please. Don’t look.) #365 ITC, but #1 Chase. (Playing for #1 Dark Angels)

TheChirurgeon’s Note: I am adding a few editor comments, because no one can stop me. Things Chase refused to write about in this article: The time he played a FALLEN army at a recent RTT in order to try and become the top-ranked ITC player for the faction, only to find out, after several phone calls, that the ITC does not actually track Fallen as a faction in its rankings. This isn’t really related to the article at hand other than the dubious loyalties of the chapter Chase has chosen to play, but damn if it isn’t one of my favorite stories to come out of working on Goonhammer over the past six months. Chase, I love you. Never change.

All of us will be playing for different things. Some for pride, some for personal goals, others for BEST IN FACTIONS BAEBEEE. Cyle has a real shot at his, whereas, for mine, I need to score like 190 points or something to get to where I need to be. That’s going to look like winning my first 3 games in a row, then a lot of praying as I ride this wild Dark Angel train to the end of the rails.

So, let’s get into the format we all know and love! Me, pitching my LVO winning ideas at Cyle. Though in this case, instead of Cyle, this week I’m bringing a little twist, instead of pitching to -actual- Cyle, I’ll be playing him in the game instead! I’ll be having our guest author, Jack “BenBooley” Hunter. to play the part of Cyle hearing us both out! Two-for-one hear me out, baby!

+++Cyle “Naramyth” Thompson: LVO 6: Where We Are Going, We Don’t Have Diehard Titles to Spoof. I feel like I’ve been in Vegas so many times I’m now the old pig shepherding the new hogs around all the traps Vegas has to offer. Last year I was also hot on the Dark Angel thing and used Lame Faction Soup Rules to try to steal best DA for the season by using 15 scouts and three HQ speeders plugged into a Castellan/Guard framework. I wound up going 5-1 and while missing the best overall for the season, I at least stole it for the event.

This year though, the faction rules have changed, but I’ve been a good robopig: dutifully playing Admech all season trying to rack up those ITC points. I’m currently 50ish points behind the lead but have quite a few folks on my heels. The plan is what it always is: Gotta do good in Vegas or none of this matters. However! That is not the story today. Today’s story is how I’m gonna use my Ravenguard to push Chase off his home table before watching some SPORTSPUCK*+++

*TheChirurgeon’s Note: I believe this is what they call “ice hockey” in North Dakota, much like how they call soda “pop” like madmen. Weird place, those Dakotas.

+++I call it soda.+++

I say pop. I’m a monster.

As stated, these will be lists run the filter of my first-time guest, Jack “BenBooley” Hunter. Jack is one of the best painters we have here at Goonhammer. (Observe ART) I also know that he plays Marines of the Yellow variety out on the west coast. Jack tends to run reasonable competitive lists with a little bit of a twist.

Jack “BenBooley” Hunter: Oh boy. Why did I agree to this? Hi, I’m Jack, hero (maybe) of actually winning my previous entry in this series. I do tend to stick towards fairly competitive lists, but I’ve got very high paint standards for myself, so I’m constantly running a list a step or two behind the current meta while I frantically try to paint. I’m also a big fan of putting my twist on lists – while a choice of units matters a ton in winning games, it’s not everything, so I’ll throw a gigantic Astraeus in my list for shits and giggles.

I’m going to be providing a voice here that’s somewhere in the middle of Chase’s complete insanity and Cyle’s relentless sanity.


Now for the Grand Reveal. This week, we are going to be focusing on…


Chase’s Super-Good A++ Award-Winning* Army

Gunum’s List: Hear me out, Cyle and/or Booley! [126 PL, 9CP, 1,984pts]

Battalion Detachment +5CP (Imperium – Dark Angels) [68 PL, 1,051pts]

  • HQ +
    Master in Phobos Armour [6 PL, 99pts]: Camo cloak, Master-crafted instigator bolt carbine

Techmarine [5 PL, 61pts]: Bolt pistol, Power axe, Servo-arm
. Servo-harness: Flamer, Plasma cutter

  • Troops +
    5x Infiltrator Squad [5 PL, 110pts]
    5x Scout (Bolter) Scout Squad [4 PL, 55pts]
    5x Scout (Bolter) Scout Squad [4 PL, 55pts]
  • Fast Attack +
    3x Ravenwing Land Speeders [18 PL, 261pts] Heavy bolter, Typhoon missile launcher

  • Heavy Support +
    Land Raider Achilles [21 PL, 325pts]
    Whirlwind [5 PL, 85pts]

Spearhead Detachment +1CP (Imperium – Dark Angels) [46 PL, 939pts]

  • HQ +

Lieutenant in Phobos Armour [5 PL, 75pts]: Target Priority, Warlord
Heavy Bolt Pistol & Smoke Grenade

  • Heavy Support +
    Eliminator Squad [3 PL, 72pts]
    Eliminator Squad [3 PL, 72pts]
    Eliminator Squad [3 PL, 72pts]
    Relic Leviathan Dreadnought [16 PL, 321pts]: 3x Hunter-killer missile, 2x Storm cannon array,
    Relic Leviathan Dreadnought [16 PL, 321pts]: 3x Hunter-killer missile, 2x Storm cannon array

Cyle’s Lame-ass Bad Army of Idiots

Cyle’s List: Sneaky Pigs

Sneaky Pigs, Ravenguard Successor (Hungry for Battle, Stealthy) Battalion

  • HQ +
    Chaplain Dread, Lascannons
    Chaplain Dread, Lascannons

  • Troops +
    5x Intercessors, Bolt Rifles, Aux Grenade
    5x Intercessors, Bolt Rifles, Aux Grenade
    5x Intercessors, Bolt Rifles, Aux Grenade

  • Elites +
    6x Aggressors
    6x Aggressors

  • Heavy Support +
    5x Grav Cents, Hurricane Bolters
    Thunderfire Cannon
    Thunderfire Cannon

Sneaky Pigs, Ravenguard Successor (Hungry for Battle, Stealthy) Battalion

  • HQ +
    Librarian, Warlord, Master of Ambush
    Captain, Hammer, Shield, Jump Pack

  • Troops +
    5x Intercessors, Bolt Rifles
    5x Scouts, Bolters, Storm Bolter
    5x Scouts, Bolters, Storm Bolter


The Tactics

So what do Marines have a lot of? AP! Everything in the world of Marines seems to be AP-2 or higher and there just aren’t enough Invulnerable saves in the world to protect us from such doom as mere normal* players. So this list may look pretty familiar to my time at the Renegade Open where I tried to bring majorly durable Dark Angels onto the field to help put up with these issues. It met with… generous success I’d say so myself. So I currently find this version to be putting my best foot forward with this list. The biggest issue I had with it before was that although it had the shooting to put the hurt on all kinds of factions, the 24″ range lost me two of my games. So, I’ve been on a hunt to fix that issue. I thought by cutting the Invuln-less Executioner from my list and adding in some Ravenwing elements to target with Speed of the Raven I would have quite an edge. Not only that, but the Raven Wing Speeders coming with their new* (cheaper) and improved* (only by like 6 points or something) Typhoon Missle Launchers I thought would give me some much needed anti-tank at the ranges that had killed me at Renegade.

+++I hate the Ravenwing Speeders because they are so fragile and needing to go first for a defensive play feels bad man, but I’m doing the same nonsense in a way with Aggressors so whatever man. Up is down, cats and dogs living together, you know the rest+++

+++I knew this was a bad idea. I think Cyle’s list here has a lot more legs. It’s got a huge volume of fire, enough screening to keep those chaplains dreads shooting all game, and plenty of mobility. Three land speeders are carrying more weight than I think makes sense in Chase’s list, they’re the only repeatable long-range anti-tank, so anything that can take them out (which is most armies) can dance around outside leviathan threat range, especially if it’s another marine army tagging both with a Thunderfire to slow them down. The land raider is an interesting choice, three toughness 8 units with a 2+/4++ save are going to be tough to kill, but they’re expensive. I think I’d prefer a third leviathan over the land raider, as they double up nicely on antitank and anti-infantry. I don’t rate 4 multi-meltas as tremendously strong.+++

Thanks to Booley for his uh….  feedback? While you digest his -deep- thoughts, Cyle and I will talk about our stand-out units!

For me, it is going to be without a doubt, the big papas themselves: The Leviathan Dreadnought.

Would you just look at it? This thing has been the donkey carrying my Dark Angels up the steep competitive mountains of the ITC-alayas. These things are mighty at a powerful T8 with a 2+, 4++. The 4++ is the key because you can’t kill anything if you are dead. There is a bunch of different versions you can run your Leviathan as, but we all know there are those wrong options and the Dual Storm Cannon is the truth. With a withering amount of fire at 20 shots at S7, -2, 2D I have torn planes out of the skies. Killed hordes of Guardsmen and their accompanying armor. Oh, and its 24″ range, I have been outplayed and outranged with them. Though they move 8″, sometimes that’s just not far enough when it comes to needing to tear down well…. anything.

+++The Mighty Bolt Rifle Intercessor

That’s right, I’m not going to talk about the 12 aggressors, the Centstar or even the nexus of awful rules that is the Chaplain dread. I’m going to talk about why I have 20 Intercessors instead of 30 scouts and something worthwhile. Intercessors are awful in most respects: 2 wounds a guy is a great way to lose models efficiently. 2 incidental shots for 17 points are just awful points to shots conversion and even 17 close combat swings out of 5 guys are not anything, It’s still only S4 and AP-.

So why Intercessors? Because they are way more durable than Scouts in this “60% of the field has Thunderfires and Kill/Kill more is a thing” meta. They hide behind cover, cowering on objectives, using that sweet 2+ save outside of 12″ to just hang on while the rest of the army locks up, shoots, or punches the other guy to death. One Intercessor hanging on can mean the difference between Kill and Kill more. And after the scouts, the next squishy target in units of Intercessors that are just annoying to deal with using indirect fire. The idea of this army is to act like Genestealers in a way: Give the opponent zero options to shoot at and force movement into the waiting (powered) hands of the aggressors, or castle up and secede the board to 600 points of powerhouse units in reserve.+++

+++I continue to agree with Cyle here, Intercessors are amazing. As a loyal Imperial Fist player, I’m a firm believer in the Stalker Bolt Rifle – it combines everything Cyle says here about how Intercessors manage to hang on with being a pretty respectable gun. Leviathans are great – tons of firepower and durability, but they just don’t have mobility, get tied up in combat, and are expensive enough to eat big chunks of your army+++

Being as we are going to the BIGGEST ITC EVENT EVER, AGAIN! I always think it’s important to talk about what we can do to win this dumb game in the first place.  The cool thing about my list is that there are some hard secondaries choices here. The only ones I see people choosing are the defensive ones, as Head Hunter and Big Game Hunter kinda suck. Also, the big pull away from the Ravenwing speeders I’ve had is they are easy Gangbusters points, but since there are only 3 points here I think people would avoid that as well. My list is built to be durable and avoid most of the secondaries people will want to pick and if they pick things like recon? Well, it’s time to go to bullet town to keep people off those objectives! I think I’ll be picking Butcher’s Bill, Engineers, or Recon as well.

+++With this list I put my opponents in a similar situation. I lean super hard into Gangbusters then after that life gets hard. Butcher’s Bill feels real bad, Old School means digging out my Librarian. I do have 6 characters so Headhunter I’m sure will be common but most of the HQs are tanky or in my literal backfield. Finally, positional secondaries are also tricky: I bet I can get to most Engineers, and spreading out for Recon will give me wrap targets. Generally, I can pick kill secondaries, I am good at Recon, and for maps that support it, Intercessors as Engineers isn’t horrible. +++

+++More people are going to take Gangbusters against Chase than I think he thinks will happen – 3 nearly guaranteed points are a better call than 4 risky points until you get to the very top tables. Engineers and Recon are also pretty easy to score against him given the lack of much screening, but at least Recon will push things into range of his Leviathans. Against Cyle everyone’s going to be taking, and probably maxing Gangbusters. Other secondaries are harder with the weight of LOS ignoring fire and enough models to effectively screen out his deployment zone, but I can see a lot of armies going for headhunter. While Chase losing out on secondaries may decide games, I think Cyle’s opponents will mostly score high on secondaries if they’d be winning anyways.+++

The Pre-Game Show

As we do here at “Hear me out, Cyle!”. I like to ask my partner in crime (or in this case, our guest Booley) to give his prediction of the game, before the game.

So Mr.Booley, JUST looking at the lists, how do you think this is going to go?

+++Cyle has this. I don’t see any way that Chase’s list can compete with his. The land speeder gimmick is cool, but it’s 18w of T5 models, which are just going to die to the volume of fire. I’d certainly rather see Chase’s interesting list than Cyle’s blandness, but he’s got an uphill slog to get there.+++

Well. Fine. That’s the kind of glowing response that I would only expect from you. Everyone votes for Cyle, but that’s why I’m here! To upset that status quo. Let’s make it happen!

The Mission


Okay, everyone, it’s time to deal with the big problem at hand. That big problem is CYLE! We roll off the mission and with that, he wins the opportunity to deploy first. Cyle had a ton of 3 wound models, so picking Gangbusters was the go-to choice I also went with Head Hunter and Old School. The man had enough characters and I felt there would be no way he could hide from all my shooting. Cyle ended up picking Recon due to the aggressive nature of his army. He also picked The Butcher’s Bill and Old School, which did seem to make sense. Since he was playing with a double battalion he had a lot of units I’d be able to kill, so he would want to lean into that and try and kill as many as I would! BB can be a very motivating choice. With that, I start to compare the drops and see that I will, more than likely, go first. As we drop, I realize I have much fewer drops then him. So clearly, victory is in my hands. Then my next major realization is Cyle deploys very well. As in, he hides like a COWARD. Putting everything he has out of LOS of my army, making sure his TFC’s are waaaaayyy oveeerrr theerrreee and behind a tower. I was not a fan.

Cyle’s mega LAME deployment for cowards

Chase’s Bad Ass Deployment for Brave Warriors

So seeing this issue I now had to deal with, the only options I could think of is to win the roll-off to get first, box out his entire deep strike game the best I could and start to own some table presence. So that’s just what I did! Cyle started his Cents and a squad of aggressors off the table. I tore up the table with my speeders to try and see over these 6″ castle walls Cyle had dug out of some odd playset. I also moved my Leviathan and Land Raider up the South end of the table to try and just peek around the edge of his L blocker. The north Leviathan also got a great eye on the very tip of an Intercessors squad’s gun. With that and the boys on the bottom, I thought I had exactly what I needed to start cleaning up some dudes.

Once I started shooting, one intercessor squad was gone, the rest were all alive with one model left. I have rarely been so frustrated. I was going to use my snipers to put shots into those -crazy- Chaplain Dreads but instead I needed to use them to pick up a second intercessor squad leaving one alive. The speeders had popped up and I had to use them to put damage on that final guy to get the last of the three units.

Move up the Table – Featuring Speeders in Towers!

So then it was Cyle’s turn and well… I must say I learned a lot about what you can do with the Raven Guard book. First off, did you all know there was a Warlord trait that provides the ability to charge after advancing and the Hungry for Battle trait is +1 Charge AND Advance?! Cyle ran his deployed aggressor unit through the wall, then opened up with some cheeky shooting, using his thunder fires to kill two units of scouts. He left one alive on the north objective which at the time I couldn’t figure out why right away then I saw it… I also saw he had run some scouts up as well…

Hold onnnnnn…

Hoooold on one second…

Everything I Have is Wrapped.

So. This was pretty much the game…..

I could go into how his Centurions came down and punked my Phobos Captain, Infiltrators, and a Whirlwind or how my Speeders jumped up and assassinated his librarian and made it back to try and kill his Thunderfires, dying in the effort. Or how he dropped his Aggressors right behind my lines to kill my warlord, only to get murdered by a Leviathan Dreadnought.

But the game came down to him wrapping my scouts on the north objective with his Aggressors, instead of swinging with power fists they just slapped them in the face, killing none of them. This then led to him killing them in my turn, then going to touch my N Leviathan who got caught out. On the South end, his scouts touching my entire firebase and not getting run over allowed his Chaplin dreadnoughts to punch me into little pieces.

I fought as hard as I could, scoring points all over the gosh-darn place but I just couldn’t hold pace to the 4-point turns he was able to put onto me at the start of the game. The moral of the story is to always be playing for points, even if it looks like you’re losing you still just might pull it off.

End Score: 25 – 29

~The Winner~

Booley. And also Cyle I guess…

So like, Cyle’s good no matter what army he is playing. There’s not much to say about that. He knew my shooting was filthy and he played around it, locking up all of my stuff right away, then just continuing to apply that pressure. He had made some poor choices, putting his Aggressors in a very vulnerable spot and he had dropped his Grav Cents in an area that allowed him to kill my Whirlwind and my Phobos cap, but then after that, they just didn’t do much.

Booley called it. It was mega uphill for me and I think it has a lot to do with the deployment. If we had Dawn of war or even Corners he wouldn’t have been able to hide his entire army behind an L blocker, which would have given my crazy shooting a real chance to do some damage.

I still liked the idea behind my list. The durability is still -aggressively- a thing, but I noticed a big miss without having any Psykers to counter his or to even support my guys. The Speeders were fine. They had made it turn four and had really tried to get some work done, but once again heavy weapons and a fast platform sometimes just sucks. I loved the Land Raider, I loved the Leviathans.

God, now I just need to find something that can support these units without being hot garbage.

+++I’m not surprised by this outcome. I’d agree not having any form of psychic can be problematic – what about dropping the Speeders for a second whirlwind, Inquisitor Hector Rex, and as many more scout squads as you can fit? That’ll give you a bit more screening to hopefully keep things from bad touching your Leviathans, a bit more heavy LOS ignoring shooting, and a whole bunch of casts/denies.+++

 +++++Mercy is for the weak.+++++

Wait… Cyle. What about…..Hold on…

Okay, Hear me out… 

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