This is it bois. 9 games of ham slamming with goons and my fellow Warhog Chase. Thankfully we flew in early Thursday and were able to check out the sights that evening with Liam and show him how cool Freedom(TM) is.
Corrode’s Note: A mere 3 layers of fences between us and the White House. Freedom!
Anyway I’ve talked a bunch about this list already in my last report, but here it is for reference.
Army List - Click to Expand Mars Battalion Cawl, Warlord Mars Battalion Enginseer Operative Requisition Sanctioned
Enginseer, Reroll Repairs Relic
10x Fulgurite Priests
10x Fulgurite Priests
Dunecrawler, Icarus Array, Stubber
Dunecrawler, Icarus Array, Stubber
Dunecrawler, Icarus Array, Stubber
Operative Requisition Sanctioned
Game 1: Imperium
The Opposition Player: Nick A
Army List - Click to Expand
Tank Commander with plasma sponsons and Hammer of Sunderance
4×10 Infantry Squads
Player: Nick A
As TheChirurgeon pointed out, these were Caladius tanks on their final beta ride. The list has a ton of shooting and on Dawn of War deployment I couldn’t outrange anything. However, L blockers do exist, and I have melee threats that can charge out from behind walls so as his melee units move up I should be able to tag them.
Callidus Assassin for all the usual CP stealing reasons, and since she will have the chance to gank the Company Commander. Progressive Primary, Secondary Objectives were Strike the Rank and File, Recon, and Shoot the Big Ones.
He sets up mainly in the NE corner of the board, with troops hiding the best they can behind hills and small rubble piles. His CC is in the NW with the Knights deployed broadly right on the line. I setup my crawlers pretty broad, but try to hide my Disintegrators as best as I can. The troop transports are set to drive right at the midfield objectives and the priests are centered behind the L blockers. Drill and assassin in reserve.
He wins the roll off, and as we are tied for drops he gets the +1, but I go for the seize and get it! I try to focus down the Russ but do not do nearly enough and only degrade it. Honestly I should have lined up on a Caladius. It has an invulnerable save, but with my crawlers I would have been hitting on 2s and doing the majority of wounding on 4s and probably would have taken one down. However, I do kill 35 infantry or so and get loaded transports on objectives. His return was pretty rough, easily killing the E transport with his Knight and Warglaive. He also takes out a dunecrawler and I think a Disintegrator. His W Warglaive fails to kill the priest ride in shooting and is forced to charge it, but kills zero as they disembark.
My turn two the drill comes in to threaten the middle of the board, the Vanguard and Tech Priests hide in the buildings to rush out and grab objectives, the assassin drops in on the Company Commander, both sets of priests get out to threaten both Warglaives, and the remaining troops on my E flank form a line to prevent his melee presence from coming at my Cawl castle which shifts W to LOS the Russ and get shots on a Caladius while the remaining transports come around the NW corner to contribute stubber fire. My shooting takes down a Caladius and the Russ with indirect fire, the remaining infantry, and start chipping at the glaves to help the priests. Both priests charge and kill their Warglaive targets, and consolidate to threaten a hidden charge at the Knight. He responds by moving the Knight back NE to charge and kill the drill and proceeds to pick up both crawlers and one priest squad. The drill does go down, but now the Knight is near some walls to protect my priests from overwatch.
On my turn 3 everyone shifts to take out the Knight, while some tech priests grab objectives. All of my shooting unloads into it, including the Callidus’ MW gun. The Knight goes down after my W priests charge and double fight to finish it off. He responds by throwing up his bike captain to attempt to get Cawl, but fails to kill him on the charge. Cawl heals up on 4 and the bulk of my shooting turns and cuts down the biker. After that we dance around a bit trying to pick up secondaries, but he is down to 2 Caladius tanks and I have all my secondaries and primary on lock. We add up points killed and shake hands on the end of 6. He commented on how much shooting I had and was very excited for a pure Ad Mech list to be doing well.
Final Score 33-20ish?
All my pregame decisions were correct. I should have focused a Caladius down turn one, but slaughtering his troops was key to helping me lock up primary early.
Game 2: Genestealer Cult/Tyranids
Army List - Click to Expand Player: Dallas R. Twisted Helix Battalon Four-Armed Emperor+ Bladed Cog mixed Battalion
2x 17 Genestealers
1x 3 Rippers
3×10 Brood Brothers
10 Brood Brothers
18 Acolyte Hybrids with hand flamers
5 Acolyte Hybrids with hand flamers
Player: Dallas R.
Twisted Helix Battalon
Four-Armed Emperor+ Bladed Cog mixed Battalion
Oh man Genestealers. I’ve had some bad experience with them in the past, playing Nick Nanavati back in May at SpringCon, and it didn’t go well. This has some of the same bones, but also has two bricks of real Genestealers with huge movement and great terrain to hide behind.
Endgame Primary, Secondary Objectives were Strike the Rank and File, Headhunter, Cull the Horde, assassin choice was Callidus to sneak in a couple kills and steal CP.
We have Hammer and Anvil deployment and I try to take advantage of it. A few transports up front to eat the charge including the drill, and setup to not be wrapped, and everyone else on the back line. He setups hiding behind L blockers as hard as possible and infantry hiding behind hills. I feel I win the roll off and let him go first. His one set of Genestealers gets Catalyst and runs right up to my N transport line, charges and kills one transport and gets the wrap on the second ride. My counter punch is kill all the ‘stealers with my priests while making as much space as possible. He was very successful at hiding out of LOS and I super didn’t remember Swarmy was 12 wounds so I did not drop artillery on him like a scrub.
On his turn two, the other brick of Genestealers comes out along with the Aberrants, and that all crashes into my front line of transports and my now exposed set of priests. He wraps me on my S front while the priests get blown up. I counter punch almost killing Swarmy and all the Genestealers and start working on stopping the Aberrants from rolling up my S line. The assassin comes down to kill the banner guy hiding on a back objective and completely flubs her swings. One set of priests charged the Aberrants as well and not only did not kill them, but ate it when a bunch of them did a bunch of swings as they died. All my Vanguard charge in to try to finish Swarmlord but fail, however he dies on top of three when my canticles trigger the Electromancer and do d3 mortals to him.
On his turn three his flamer brick drops in and kills my assassin, while the second Aberrants squad lines up in my back line… and fails his charge. This puts me back in the game and over the next two turns I am able to shoot my way out, and he pulls his flamer brick on 4 to Return to the Shadows. Now I rush up as far as I can because I am playing end game but am woefully short of holding 4 to max primary. In addition I only have two points on Strike the Rank and File so I’m playing pretty behind, however I have also denied him 2 points on his secondaries so it is very close. On the top of six he drops his brick of 15 dudes in a huge line 3″ away from my tanks to deny me getting close enough to his objectives. I shoot my way out of it, killing the other unit holding his middle E placed objective and make the charge into the last two guys with a Skorpius, fail to kill them and lose by two.
Final Score 29-31
After our game I was talking it through with the goons and realized he owed me a morale check! If he’d failed it his guys would have died and I win. I ran back down to the hall, got the judge to call him to the desk and explained what happened. Dallas flat told me “I have two CP left” which I instantly remembered and shook his hand one more time. The assassin was the correct pick, but I should have chosen Marked for Death on the Aberrants and Genestealers instead of Strike the Rank and File. I also probably should have picked progressive as I had time in the end to earn points back. Finally, the drill should have stayed in reserve to crush his backline. Also the assassin didn’t steal a single CP off of him and even one would have caused him to be out of CP and then I win the game when they pop on morale. A fun and super close game ultimately.
Game 3: Chaos
Army List - Click to Expand Player: Kelsey H. Chaos Daemons Battalion Thousand Sons Battalion
Chaos Space Marines Supreme Command
Soulforged Pack of 3 Disco Lords
Herald of Slannesh
Prince of Tzeentch
Player: Kelsey H.
Chaos Daemons Battalion
Thousand Sons Battalion
My Vindicare makes it off the tray for the first time in 50+ games. The Chaos Smite Spam(tm) wants to be close and out in the open. Otherwise I chose Progressive primary with an easy 3-4 objectives I can get to on Vanguard Strike deployment, with Secondaries being Cull the Hordes, Headhunter, and Marked for death on the 3 Disco Lords and Ahriman. The drill starts on the table to threaten the disco lords on the N flank.
I was pretty wound up after my intense game with Dallas and Kelsey was a little drunk and was generously offering me rum or vodka but I was having none of it. We setup pretty fast and get the game going. My first turn of shooting is pretty awful. Turns out a 1+ save and all my missiles failing to do a damn thing means I barely kill a Disco Lord and he double six’d his saves from my Vindicare shots. While he is moving his horde I tell him my brain space and why I’m being pretty shitty. After a bit of chatting I tell him I will take a drink and he pours me a bit of straight rum. His turn one involves blowing up both my transports that his disco lords charge, and one set of Tzaangors comes over to hug my drill but doesn’t do much to the priests or my shooting. On my turn two all my shooting kills one lord and the other gets taken down by the priests, and I continue to not kill characters with the Vindi. Now his second squad of Tzaangors come down from deep strike but miss the charge, however his E set of Plaguebearers wrap up some Rangers, trying their best not to get shot. My top of three involves the sniper turning off the suck and acing Ahriman and a Sorcerer, while the rest of my shooting kills all of his Tzangors and all but three of the N/NW Plaguebearers. On his go his Prince comes out to try to kill Cawl but fails his charge, while the now SE Plaguebearers catch another set of Rangers. I finish off the rest of his characters with more Vindicare shooting, and he shakes my hand as all he has is a handful of Plaguebearers.
Final Score: 33-15ish
I am extremely thankful for Kelsey being a bro and getting me out of my funk. The Vindicare wound up doing his job very well, but I feel like it could have gone worse for him as he didn’t have the best LOS. Prepared positions really make disco lords difficult to take down with my mass -1/-2 shooting and I gave him a wrap on my drill that I didn’t need to with bad positioning. The Tzaangors shouldn’t have been there but I didn’t throw enough up in the NW corner to keep them screened out. 1ksons Smite spam certainly struggles against the layered boat/troop defenses since the boats can use the FNP stratagem.
Game 4: Genestealers
Army List - Click to Expand Nick Nanavati Twisted Helix Battalion – Anointed Throng Mixed Creed Battalion – Broodsurge Rusted Cog Battalion
3×10 Brood Bros
19 Acolytes with hand flamers
15 Acolytes with 4 rock saws
10 Brood Bros
5 Atalan Jackals with demo charges
4×10 neophytes, 2 laser, 2 webber
Twisted Helix Battalion – Anointed Throng
Mixed Creed Battalion – Broodsurge
Rusted Cog Battalion
Didn’t I just get done complaining about losing to Genestealer Cult piloted by Nick? Anyway, we are on Search and Destroy. I pick end game primary, Cull the Hordes, Headhunter, and Mark for Death secondary, marking his bikes, Aberrants, and his hand flamer Acolytes, which was cheating in hindsight. I bring the Callidus along and let him go first.
His Aberrants are in the east L blocker, most of everything else is off the table. He uses the “can’t target unless closest and visible” to make them untouchable while I clear out some Brood Brothers. We get through the early turn quickly, and on his two the shooting comes down and opens up a few rides while the other Aberrants come in on the S side and start charging tanks. This game is a little hazy to me, but I know I was able to clear all the Aberrants on 3 in addition to killing all of his shooting and taking out his banner guy with the Callidus. I do take apart his hand flamer unit but never get to the bikes that hide in the far back corner. I try to commit units to shoot them but having to push so far forward they got wrapped and killed. My stuff has been dying off in droves all game, and eventually I was out of materiel and wasn’t able to hold a single end game objective.
Final Score: 10-33
I played this almost exactly wrong. I needed to play progressive and just accept the midgame is going to get away from me. I need to not throw priests at Aberrants since they can fight again as they die. I need to remember the Cognis Overwatch strat so my transports do 12 shots hitting on 3s. Nick was super fun to play again and I feel I’m close to making Genestealers not an auto loss. The assassin was still the correct pick at least.
Game 5: Lieutenant Commander Boon’s Eldar
Army List - Click to Expand Player: Lieutenant Commander Boon Alaitoc Battalion Ynnari Supreme Command Alaitoc Air Wing
Autarch on Bike
2×5 Dire Avengers
9x Shadow Specters
2x Crimson Hunter Exarchs
Player: Lieutenant Commander Boon
Ynnari Supreme Command
Alaitoc Air Wing
It’s a goon fight! I’ve played Lieutenant Commander Boon twice before and had seized both times. We were both expecting a three-peat. I picked Progressive, Shoot the Big Ones, Headhunter, and Recon. The “a warcrime against Eldar” -Wings Callidus was the assassin pick.
We setup, Lieutenant Commander Boon gets the first turn, and despite the fanfare the seize die only came up a 5. Womp womp. Lieutenant Commander Boon’s Hemlock comes up and burns a crawler, and the rest of Lieutenant Commander Boon’s planes finish it off. The Wraithseers walk forward and grab the middle, while the Specters put 6 wounds on my E transport. On my return, the priests get out to charge both Wraithseers, and my shooting tears down the Hemlock and half a Crimson Hunter while all my stubber fire kills a single Specter. The priests have to fight twice but manage to kill one of the seers, and the other is wrapped up with priests. Lieutenant Commander Boon moves his planes back towards his characters to screen out the assassin and his Smites and Specters kill my free priests. The Wave Serpent leaves a squad of Dire Avengers on his NE objective then runs S to threaten mine and tie up a tank,his Autarch comes forward, doesn’t kill a Disintegrator with shooting, but charges and kills it and ties up another. Lieutenant Commander Boon’s Slicy Bois charge out of deep strike and kill the wrapped up priests.
On my two the drill and troops come down in the NE, my assassin threads the needle with a 4″ deep strike, and and Lieutenant Commander Boon’s Farseer just happens to be out of range from the planes to intercept her – eveything is 6.1″ away. I wall off the Wraithseer with my priest transports while lining up as much fire as I can on Specters, and I launch some Rangers to threaten his Avengers in the NE. My shooting takes down a plane and a half, kills the Autarch, puts some hurt on the Wave Serpent, and finishes off by clearing him off his NE objective. The Callidus charges and kills Yvraine.
Lieutenant Commander Boon is now very thin on the ground. The Wraithseer kills a transport and the Shadow Specters delete the Callidus while the plane fails to put down the drill. The Wave Serpent heads back to the NE to try to bully me off the objective but fails. I finish the plane, kill the Warlock with a fun “advance and use assault weapons” around the Specters with my Vanguard and the drill charges the remaining Specters. Lieutenant Commander Boon is basically out of gas at this point and calls it.
Final Score: 33-21
The Eldar air matchup is very hard for my opponents since I have three crawlers and a reroll all hits bubble. The Wratihseers were tougher than expected, but the Slicy Bois were very underwhelming. Still a very fun goon on Lieutenant Commander goon game.
Game 6: Ad Mech
Army List - Click to Expand Player: David
6x 5 Rangers
10x Jazzhands Priests
2x Icarus Crawlers
It’s a robot fight! I picked progressive primary, Shoot the Big Ones, Marked for Death (Rangers, Priests, Dragoons, Hoplites), and Recon since we were on table quarters. The assassin was the Callidus because he had like 5CP and stealing them would be nice.
We set up and I go first so he scout moves his Dragoons backwards. I do the usual grab all the objectives movement with the priest rides moving to work around the L blockers. My shooting is absolute trash: I do 4 wounds through the Knight of the Cog’d 1+ save Knight, and a little bit to a Dunecrawler. He repairs the crawler and moves up. Only killing two rides after all his shooting (one with a Valiant Harpoon!) and is able to move his Knight around to avoid the L blockers. I go, the drill gets into his DZ, my one set of priests line up a 9″ charge through the L blocker and I unload onto the Knight, bringing it to 12 wounds. I make my charges, including the Callidus into a Dunecrawler to tie up both of them, the drill into a crawler, and the Vanguard make an 11″ charge to touch both crawlers and a set of Breachers. The Knight dies, the crawler is alive at 2HP, and the majority of his army now cannot shoot. The drills come down and unload but never kill my drill nor stop much of my shooting. His Breachers try to keep my drill from running rampant but get killed in combat and it’s free. We grind out to 6 but it was a pretty forgone conclusion.
Final Score: 33-15ish
Going first helped a ton for board presence, and the assassin was good. Honestly his biggest issue is his army is super well converted and getting things like 7x Skorpius chassis converted up in a reasonable time just isn’t happening. We talked about what could be better and are both excited for the new Combat Patrol guy. Otherwise a pretty tic tac toe game but a very fun opponent. David did take me to school on a bunch of things I have been playing wrong. Priests MW are not in addition to their damage (but we both forgot the MW on 6s thing), drills do not get canticles, and disembarking after the drill comes down is not the same as disembark and moving. However the Manipulus is not as cool as he thinks, and servo arms are only one swing. So we are probably even. 😉
With two days and six games down, I decided I was going all the way through to game 9.
Corrode’s Note: I’m sure me having to edit this article was the absolute bottom consideration in deciding to whether or not to add 3 more games.
Game 7: Orks
Army List - Click to Expand Player: Matt
6 Smasha Guns
2 Big Meks, one with the relic shokk attack gun
2 Warboss, one the FW one
Matt knew me when I walked up, asking about a couple of my teammates. I’ve bumped into him a couple times, but we have never played. I picked Vindicare, progressive, Cull, Head Hunter, Old School.
I setup broadly on Hammer and Anvil, but well within range of the hill he is clearly going to setup his guns on. The sniper has clear LOS to a cluster of characters and I don’t go first. His turn one he jumps his FW bike Warboss over to a spot I left pointlessly open and shift the character pile NE to hide behind the L blocker and blows up a couple tanks with the shock attack and Smasha Guns. I shift to the SE to hide from the guns, shoot all the Gretchin off an objective, and kill his bike boss, to hold more. He deep strikes in a brick of Boyz to tie and wrap up the NW flank requiring the priests to get out and kill them, they get counter charged by his central Boyz from behind a his blocker. My drill comes up in his SE to threaten his backline, kills a character and then gets charged by his warboss but I quad 6 my saves and kill him on the back swing. The drill then gets buried in Boyz while the last squad gets jumped into the SW and proceeds to tie up my entire gun line. I call it there.
Final Score: 33-25
I played this completely wrong. I didn’t screen correctly, assumed my priests would kill more Boyz , started too close to the doom hill, played the sniper when a Callidus would have been way better to steal CP, and generally did not respect the Orks and got punished for it.
Game 8: Drukhari
Army List - Click to Expand Player: Jason
Haemonculus w/ Vexator Mask
Callidus, Progressive, BGH, recon, Mark: Reapers, Talos, Grotesques
Honestly a pretty onesided affair. I have the SE corner and go first, he castles up on a hill. I kill a plane, 2 sets of Wracks, and a Reaper on turn one. He punches back and wraps a troop Dunerider but does not kill it. The guys are able to get out, all the priests pile out and I try to shoot the Vexator Mask guy into tiny pieces but fail. On turn two I take down 2 planes, a Ravager, and the rest of the Wracks and double charge the Grotesques with my priests. He forces one set to fight last (and they get smoked), but takes a pile of damage from the other group and I tag the Talos to keep them from charging into my lines. On his two he doesn’t have much left, and fails to kill himself out from the priests that are tagging both his Talos and Grotesques so they are forced to keep fighting them. On my three I finish off all the other vehicles and start moving away to give myself shooting on the melee when it breaks out when he calls it.
Final Score: 33-10
He was tired and had to field a couple phone calls but with my shooting and going first there wasn’t much of a game. A fun guy and I’d certainly play him again.
Game 9: Genestealer Cult
Army List - Click to Expand Player: Justin Acolyte Iconward
4x mining laser/2 webber Neophyte Hybrids
15 flamer Acolyte Hybrids
40 Brood Brothes
GSC stuff. It’s Game 9 and I didn’t take a picture, and BCP doesn’t know whats up
Genestealers. UUGHHHH. I walk up to the table and he was ready to already shake my hand. He mistakenly thought he was playing my Ork opponent from earlier and didn’t want to do horde on horde again for a game that doesn’t matter, nor did he want to play against Ad Mech for the third time this weekend. I told him I’d love to take the offer but I need reps against GSC and I’ve bounced off of Nick and Dallas. He replied saying they are all pretty good friends. GOOD. I want a game. Let’s make all the different decisions and do this.
Callidus. Progressive this time, Cull, HH, Recon, put the drill in reserve because it’s Dawn of War.
I take the first turn! He doesn’t seize. Instead of turtling I rush forward grabbing objectives (and get too close to his Aberrants on the NW hill) and shoot all the Brood Bros off the table that are screening the Aberrants. On his turn he wraps my transport I gave him but purposely doesn’t kill it. I continue to spread out to force him into basically only the N central area of the board, including putting the drill in near the NW hill.The W priests get out and charge his Patriarch up there and the last 4 Brood Brothers. I only barely kill the Patriarch and choose not to pile into the Aberrants, who choose to fight again and wipe the priests as I fail all my 3++ saves. He comes down with all his mining lasers and blows up my drill, while the second squad of Aberrants make it into my middle empty transport but can’t wrap it so they just kill it. The W Aberrants charge a Dunecrawler and touch a Disintegrator, but do not kill either nor do they wrap. Meanwhile the flamer bros come down and start occupying and wrapping the NE transport and guys.
On my turn 3 my middle priests crash into the Aberrants in my SW, while the rest of my army works on thinning out the middle Aberrants and a few mining lasers. Thankfully they are pretty out of position after I move around to get at my shooting. My Callidus comes in and ganks the Kelermorph but fails to kill the Primus and fails to get killed in return. I kill literally every Acolyte, including the now free flamer dudes, and I dump what I can into the SE Abberants. On his 3 the SW Aberrants get killed by priests, but the SE Aberrants get free but aren’t really in place to do anything. I kill them on 4 leaving him with literally 4 characters left on the table. We talk out the last little bit and call it.
Final Score: 33-25
Heeeyyyy! We got there! I had to play against a lot of my instincts, but I think I have a path for this game now: spread out more than you think, grab objectives while you can, and don’t let back to back wraps happen. If GSC gets exposed they die real fast. Aberrants are probably the biggest problem, but there are only 20 of them, and I have enough single damage shooting that can tear them down, you just have to do it.
The list felt real good honestly. So many squads and just oceans of shooting help solve a lot of problems. The priests are fine. Not having the MW in addition to the d3 damage makes them a lot less dangerous, but they did handle the Valiant game 6 and got stuck in against Aberrants/Genestealers/Orks where it’s hard to pull them off once they reach contact. I also went through my book again and have finally realized overwatching 12 stubber shots at full BS is pretty good. I also want to have a couple of decent intercepting units to help thin out the deep striking charges as they come in. Finding room for those changes may be problematic. I do have my Hoplites now, but in the game I really remember the priests helping the Hoplites would not have got there since they do not fight twice and are only -1 AP. Finally, getting the +1 hit guy out of Combat Patrol really turns the math of Mars on it’s head. Now that Icarus Dunecrawlers can hit on 3s on ground targets maybe Stygies VIII or Graia could be on the table. Will that make the eldar match now unwinnable? Can neutron lasers be good? Does any of it help against GSC? We’ll find out at Iron Halo.