Tournament Report – Seeds of Destruction

Last week we looked at three lists from the Seeds of Destruction GT in Wales, and the event is now in the books so it’s time for a write-up. If you want to see my list before we jump into the report it’s in the preview as well.

We were hoping to use today to bring you some list reviews from the Glasshammer Open (which I’m attending this coming weekend) but unfortuately at the time of writing the lists haven’t been released as there’s still a few players yet to submit. Given that we will also be bringing you more Psychic Awakening: Phoenix Rising content later in the week, that means there’s probably no slot to get those done, but we know you appreciate them so if there’s any way to sneak some into the schedule we will.

As a quick note for Seeds, while the missions were down the line ITC, there was a modified version of ETC-style differential scoring in place for determining standings. That doesn’t really affect the report much, but if you go and look at the standings on DUP that’s why they might look a bit weird (especially as there was a minor issue with how it processed some of the scores).

For each round we’ll cover the following:

  • The Competition – Details of my opponent’s army
  • The Mission – Details of mission and deployment
  • The Plan – how I 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 I learnt from the game
  • The Score – my score after the game.

Because our schedule is extremely tight this week, I’m going to try and blast through all five games a bit more quickly than normal, and focus on the key tactical takeaways from each game. Let’s dive right in with round one!

Round 1 – Chaos

The Competition

Army List - Click to expand

ARMY FACTIONS USED: Chaos Daemons, Thousand Sons, Death Guard

== Battalion Detachment == Chaos Daemons , Chaos Undivided [42 PL,] 5 CP 745pts)

HQ: Sloppity Bilepiper (60) [3 PL] [60 pts] 
HQ: Herald of Slaanesh (60) [3 PL] [60 pts]

Troop: 20 Pink Horror (140), Instrument of Chaos (10) [8 PL] [150 pts]
Troop: 27 Plague Bearer (189), Plague Ridden (7), Instrument of Chaos (10), Daemonic Icon (15) [12 PL] [221 pts]
Troop: 24 Plague Bearer (168), Plague Ridden (7), Instrument of Chaos (10), Daemonic Icon (15) [12 PL] [200 pts]
Troop: 3 Nurglings (54) [3 PL] (54 pts)

== Supreme Command Detachment == Thousand Sons [25 PL, 491 pts] 1 CP

HQ: Ahriman (131) [ 7 PL ] [ 131 pts]
HQ: Daemon Prince (146), Wings (24), Malefic talons (10) = [9 PL] [180 pts]
HQ: Daemon Prince (146), Wings (24), Malefic talons (10) = [9 PL] [180 pts] Warlord

== Vanguard Detachment == Death Guard [44 PL, 624 pts] 1 CP

HQ: Nurgle Daemon Prince (146), Wings (24), Malefic talons (10) = [9 PL] [180 pts]
Elite: 6 Blightlord Terminators (204), 6 Combi-Bolter & Bubotic Axe (42), 1 Flail of Corruption (10), Blightlord Champion (34) [27 PL] [290 pts]
Elite: Foul Blightspawn (77) [4 PL] [77 pts]
Elite: Foul Blightspawn (77) [4 PL] [77 pts]


The Mission

ITC Mission One – Seize Ground (six objectives, bonus for holding/contesting five).

We rolled up Vanguard Strike Deployment. This is decidedly mixed for me – the mission favours his list a bit, but the deployment helps me steal early turns of hold more, especially as we agreed to play the central rock formations as hills.

The Plan

Plaguebearers is a matchup I’ve historically managed to repeatedly faceplant in, but I was somewhat optimistic coming into this – he’s missing some of the stuff that I really hate facing, such as a khorne axe prince, and has a few more soft targets than otherwise. Dark Reapers are also extremely good at killing Plaguebearers, to the point where with a bit of luck alphaing the smaller unit here off the board is just about possible.

He does have some other tricks that could be an issue though. If a Blightspawn rolls well it can just blow a plane straight out of the sky, and give me some real headaches. The Terminators can also threaten my stuff if I don’t screen, forcing me to be a bit more cautious than I might like.

My Secondaries

  • Reaper
  • Headhunter
  • A third

Their Secondaries

  • Ground Control
  • Engineers (2x Plaguebearers)
  • Big Game Hunter

The Summary

Seeds Round 1 - My Setup
My deployment. Photo: Wings

Seeds Round 1 - My Opponent's Deployment
Sinister Nurgle Horde. Photo: Wings

He took the first turn and sprawled forwards. His Blightlords and Horrors were in reserve, and he summoned in a Poxbringer to put Miasma on the larger Plaguebearer unit. He threw a few smites at a Wave Serpent, but didn’t kill it.

In retaliation, I chucked Doom and Jinx on the smaller unit, Vected the Warp Surge and killed all but one Plaguebearer from the small unit. He needed to try and get some back, but had had to remove the one that was in the Bilepiper’s aura for positioning purposes, and didn’t get a one on either his initial roll and a re-roll.

Reapers do work
Reapers get picked off by psychic, but they’ve done a lot. Photo: Wings

That put me substantially ahead in the game, as I took both kill and hold more for T1, and had removed a big unit. I’d also been very careful not to leave an easy wrap for horrors – my Dire Avengers had lined up against the wall of the building with my Reapers on it.

His second turn didn’t punch him back into the game, and left me substantially in control of proceedings, although it had some bright points for him. His horrors came in and quite a few got blown away by the Reapers via Forewarned. He did then get some decent psychic on them, killing four with a high-rolled firestorm, but losing a plaguebearer unit straight away left him struggling to control the board. His horrors did a bit, and one of his princes did double back and trash my Hemlock, but having the horrors on the board and depleted let me kill them off easily in my turn, securing a kill and letting me focus on taking out a decent handful of Plaguebearers from the next squad, while continuing to secure hold more.

My stuff is still dying, but the game is sewn up.
My stuff is still dying, but the game is sewn up. Photo: Wings

The nails in the coffin were then him failing miasma on turn 3 combined with, on the right flank, my roving archon going absolutely bonkers and taking out four Blightlord terminators over the course of several turns before finally being put down. That delayed him being able to bring round enough forces to properly threaten me, and the collapse of the remaining plaguebearers let me take start killing off his characters with impunity. While I was a little slow at this, as my army had taken a beating and was somewhat depleted, I’d built up an early lead on primary and a decent secondary score, so while he stayed on the board to the end, even going through enough units to take kill more in turn 6, I had the game locked in.

The Takeaways

I love Dark Reapers now. I do still think they could bear to come down a few points (witness here how painful it is when you’re confronted with things that can just bypass their save) but boy oh boy I’d forgotten just how appallingly potent they are when a full guided squad lets rip into a debuffed target. They only got one full turn here but that did a massive amount, as taking out a Plaguebearer squad on one is the dream start here. Vect also immediately proved its usefulness.

Very happy with how this played out. I think in hindsight we shouldn’t have used the rocks as hills (I did offer to move them and put objectives on the ground instead pre-game) as that helped me a bit, although given how fast I took out the first blob I don’t think it made a gigantic difference to his ability to seize them. I was also basically just happy with how I played this and it immediately felt like an invigorating return after the disappointing LGT

The Score

Primary: 21-13

Secondary: 12-8

Total: 33-21

Match Score: 1-0

Round 2 – Chaos

The Competition

Army List - Click to expand

Faction: Chaos Space Marines; Chaos Knights

Total CP: 11

Total Points: 2000pts (110PL)

Battalion Detachment: Red Corsairs (+3CP), Detachment CP = 5

Specialist Detachment: Soulforged Pack (-1CP)

Field Commander (-1CP)

HQ1: Lord Discordant on Helstalker (150); Autocannon (10), Mark of Tzeentch, Master of the Soulforges. [9PL, 160pts]

HQ2: Lord Discordant on Helstalker (150); Autocannon (10), Mark of Tzeentch [9PL, 160pts]

HQ3: Lord Discordant on Helstalker (150); Autocannon (10), Mark of Slaanesh [9PL, 160pts]

TROOPS1: Chaos Space Marines (65); 4x Bolter (0), 4x Bolt Pistol (0), Aspiring Champion; Chainaxe (1), Combi-bolter (2) Mark of Slaanesh [4PL, 68pt]

TROOPS2: Chaos Space Marines (65); 4x Bolter (0), 4x Bolt Pistol (0), Aspiring Champion; Chainaxe (1), Bolter (0) Mark of Slaanesh [4PL, 67pts]

TROOPS3: Chaos Space Marines (65); 4x Bolter (0), 4x Bolt Pistol (0), Aspiring Champion; Chainaxe (1), Bolter (0) Mark of Slaanesh [4PL, 67pts]

HS1: Maulerfiend (120); Lasher Tendrils (12) Mark of Tzeentch [7PL, 132pts]

HS2: Maulerfiend (120); Lasher Tendrils (12) Mark of Slaanesh [7PL, 132pts]

Flyer: Heldrake (120); Heldrake Claws (17), Baleflamer (30) Mark of Slaanesh [9PL, 167pts]

DT1: Chaos Rhino (70); Combi-bolter (2) Mark of Slaanesh [4PL, 72pts]

Supreme Command Detachment: Red Corsairs (+1CP), Detachment CP = 1

HQ1: Master of Possession (90); Force Stave (8) Mark of Tzeentch, Psychic Powers: Smite +2 Malefic, Warlord [5PL, 98pts]

HQ2: Daemon Prince with Wings (170); Malefic Talon (10), Warp Bolter (3) Mark of Slaanesh, Psychic Powers: Smite + 1 Hereticus [9PL, 180pts]

HQ3: Exalted Champion (70); Chainsword (0), Power Fist (9) Mark of Khorne [5PL, 79pts]

Super Heavy Auxiliary Detachment: Chaos Knights; Iconoclast

LOW1: Knight Despoiler (285); Heavy Stubber (2), Ironstorm Missile Pod (16), Avenger Gatling Cannon (85), Heavy Flamer (14), Thermal Cannon (55), Dreadblade [25PL, 457pts]

ARMY TOTAL: 110PL, 2000pts


A previous nemesis returns! Regular readers will recognise most of this list, as it’s Michael Costello’s updated version of the list with which he thoroughly pushed me in at the London Open, taking advantage of some sloppy play from me. This time I was determined to make a better go of it!

He obviously added the Hat of Ruining my Day Helm of Warpsight to the Knight.

The Mission

ITC Mission Two – Cut to the Heart. Three objectives, once central, two placed, bonus for holding central and the one your opponent placed.

We rolled Hammer and Anvil deployment. Good for me, as I want to backline like crazy, and means I can probably even keep the fliers out of Knight range with a Phantasm.

The Plan

The very good news here is that I “lost” the pre-game roll off, so would get to deploy and go first, unless I got seized on. At that point the plan, obviously, is to use Phantasm to ensure my reapers can line up shots on the Knight and alpha it off the board. At that point this should be pretty good for me, as he has nothing other than the Heldrake after that which can really threaten my fliers as long as I’m careful, and it’s going to kill one at most before getting killed itself.

With the pressure from the knight off, the game is all about using my sacrificial units to gently slow him down while I bring my forces to bear. Starcannon Hunters are great at killing Discolords and Princes, because they’re both only T6, and the latter flies. The Reapers should also do work, and there were some lovely ruins for them to fire and fade in and out of.

Maybe this time?

My Secondaries

  • Kingslayer
  • Headhunter
  • Big Game Hunter

Their Secondaries

  • Marked for Death
  • Recon
  • Big Game Hunter

The Summary

Seeds Wound 2 - Opponent's Deployment
Chaos Horde Number 2 Lines Up. Photo: Wings

Seeds Round 2 - My Deployment
Appropriate levels of cowering. Photo: Wings.

I got seized on. Curses.

With Hammer and Anvil that at least meant things weren’t unsalvageable, as I was indeed able to Phantasm my planes out of Knight range. On his turn 1 he blew up a Serpent and eviscerated a bunch of Dire Avengers that fell out with a Helldrake, but nothing super outrageous.

I needed at least a couple of turns of shooting with the Reapers, so castled up and focused on getting him out of my lines. My storm guardians and one of the remaining serpents took up positions, the latter behind a wall of planes so that he’d have to kill them first in order to fit a large base into melee. The Helldrake was then blown to bits by a mixture of psychic and my Autarch, and the Reapers and my other fire took out the lead Discordant. All in all, about the best I could hope for, and while I was likely to take some pain on the following turn, it might keep me in the game.

It didn’t. The rest of this game was a hilarious series of dice disasters that had us both in absolute stitches.

Archon Wings Starts to Worry
Archon Wings becomes increasingly concerned by the strange noises coming from the rest of the field. Photo: Wings


  • Three different vehicles blew up in my lines. The last one was after a re-roll. It killed my Bikelock from full.
  • I got not a single one of the 21CP we spent over the game back with Labyrinthine.
  • A squad of guided Dark Reapers shot a Discolord and did zero damage.
  • I took three shadow field saves this game on my two Archons. I invite you to calculate the implied fail rate.
  • Towards the end of the game my remaining Crimson Hunter spent three turns trying to get me a BGH point by killing a 4W Rhino. It did not do any damage.

Archon Wings is Cornered
Ah. Photo: Wings

I did not win this game.

The Takeaways

Honestly this was still an absolute blast because the dice went so far off the deep end so quickly after my first turn that it was just hilarious, and Michael is always a pleasure to play. I made a minor mistake early on with underestimating the speed of the Heldrake and not screening my warlock from a possible charge, but him killing my serpent and letting the Dire Avengers out let me fix that before it was critical. I need to pay attention to that this week.

Otherwise, I played this right but the dice weren’t to be. Ah well.

Next tiiiiimmmeeee!

The Score

Primary: 8-24

Secondary: 4-12

Total: 12-36

Match Score: 1-1

Round 3 – Chaos

The Competition

Army List - Click to expand

+ARMY FACTION:  Chaos Knights




+ARMY FACTIONS USED: Chaos Space Marines, Chaos Knights, Renegades & Heretics


Super-Heavy Detachment +3CP (Chaos - Chaos Knights) [59 PL, 3CP, 1120pts]

Household: Iconoclast

SH:  War Dog [9 PL, 162pts]: Iconoclast, Thermal spear and reaper chain-cleaver [free]

SH:  Knight Despoiler [25 PL, 442pts]: Iconoclast, Character (Traitoris Lance), 2 Thermal Cannon [110pts], Heavy stubber [2pts], Stormspear Rocket Pod [45pts]

SH:  Knight Despoiler [25 PL, 516pts]: Iconoclast, Dreadblade, 2 Rapid fire battle cannon with heavy stubber [184pts], Heavy stubber [2pts], Stormspear Rocket Pod [45pts]

Vanguard Detachment +1CP (Chaos - Chaos Space Marines) [48 PL, 1CP, 810pts]

Legion: The Purge

HQ:  Warpsmith [4 PL, 62pts]: WARLORD Nurgle, Blessed Mission, Orb of Unlife, power axe, melta gun, flamer, Combi Bolter [2pts]

EL:  Hellforged Contemptor Dreadnought [10 PL, 188pts]: Nurgle, 2 Hellforged deathclaw [40pts], 2 Soulburner [60pts]

EL:  Hellforged Contemptor Dreadnought [10 PL, 188pts]: Nurgle, 2 Hellforged deathclaw [40pts], 2 Soulburner [60pts]

EL:  Hellforged Contemptor Dreadnought [10 PL, 174pts]: Nurgle, Havoc launcher [6pts], 2 Twin lascannon [80pts]

HS:  Hellforged Deredeo Dreadnought [14 PL, 198pts]: Nurgle, Butcher cannon array, Greater havoc launcher, Twin heavy bolter [78pts]

Spearhead Detachment +1CP (Chaos – Renegades & Heretics) [12 PL, 1CP, 70pts]

HQ:  Renegade Commander [3 PL, 25pts]: Brutal assault weapon, Laspistol [free]

HS:  Renegade heavy weapons squad [3PL 15pts]: 3 Renegade heavy weapon teams, Heavy stubber, Lasgun [2pts]

HS:  Renegade heavy weapons squad [3PL 15pts]: 3 Renegade heavy weapon teams, Heavy stubber, Lasgun [2pts]

HS:  Renegade heavy weapons squad [3PL 15pts]: 3 Renegade heavy weapon teams, Heavy stubber, Lasgun [2pts]

The Mission

ITC Mission 4 – What’s Yours is Mine (5 objectives, 1 central, 2 placed each, one in your opponent’s deployment zone, bonus for holding the two you placed)

Search and Destroy deployment. Both the mission and deployment favour me a bit here – this mission is good for my army as I can usually take the bonus from two, and being on quarters lets me swing away from his army if he pushes unevenly.

The Plan

Ooof, I do not like this matchup, because there’s a Knight with That Darned Hat again (he added it to the battle cannon one) and also a bunch of BS2+ Purge units, whose re-rolls basically neuter my defensive gimmick. The upside is that his heavy weapons teams are a huge liability against me for kills, and several of his dreads are very vulnerable to being tagged by my Autarch, a serpent or some Kabalites coming in on the back line.

Sadly, we were on another “full deployment” mission and he got to deploy first, meaning that unless I seized he was going to get a crack at blowing my off the board. With the volume of stuff he had the best I could do was backline far enough back that the soulburners weren’t goikng to reach me, and hope I had enough stuff left after his first turn to counterattack a knight off the board. At least the Reapers help a lot against this, and I had a convenient place to hide them and their Serpent.

I took the unusual decision to deep strike the Raider with my spare Archon and a squad of Kabalites in rather than the usual two squads, mostly because the Archon’s relic pistol is so good at butchering the heavy weapons teams and totally useless against the stuff he’s going to push with. The second Kabalite squad set up to move to an easy safe Recon spot instead.

My Secondaries

  • Kingslayer
  • Big Game Hunter
  • Recon

Their Secondaries

  • Big Game Hunter
  • Recon
  • Marked for Death

The Summary

I seized! I then poured a bunch of CP into alpha striking his Helm knight off the table (the full Doom, Jinx, Vect Rotate extravaganza), which succeeded. That left me low on resources but in a very good spot.

It wasn’t absolute game over – his first turn was pretty good, taking out seeral of my units and pushing up to hold the objectives. My second turn was also a flop – I failed every psychic cast, so my plan of rolling on to kill his second knight was out and I had to clear up some of the smaller targets instead. However, I’d made sure to push an infantry screen forward to minimise the consequences if this happened, and was able to take out the armiger and hurt a contemptor, while my Raider dropped in and started picking up HWT bases. With my slightly weak turn 2 a significant high roll turn from him could maybe have put him back in it, but instead he low-rolled, leaving my forces mildly depleted but basically fine.

Seeds Round 3 - Full Flow
Battle in full flow. Photo: Wings

With that, I was able to close the noose entirely, killing off the second knight on my turn 3 while tagging the Deredeo and Las Contemptor in melee, while seizing a tonne of objectives. That left him with almost no offensive presence, so while it took me a few turns to pick everything up (and he took kill more on turn 4 after his Warpsmith managed to waste my Archon), the game was over and I maxed out points on 5 and 6 as I finished off his stuff.

Seeds Round 3 - Conclusion
The board is fully conquered. Photo: Wings

The Takeaways

I’m really starting to hate the Eldar vs. Chaos Knights matchup, as the Helm is such a swing element that it basically does just come down to first turn wins. With that in mind, it may actually have been correct, given I was probably going second here, to do the same tactic you’ll see in the next match to minimise my exposure turn one, but that does leave me light on the board, and that gets punished much worse here than there, as he has a lot of push elements that are going to be right in my face thanks to the deployment.

Still, I did play this pretty well on the board after the game started – I had a plan for exactly how I was going to get to and lock down his threats where possible, and was making sure I was getting to objectives and racking up easy kills where safe to avoid him building up too much of an early lead in case of a later disaster. Careful setup on turn 2 also meant failing psychic completely was mitigated – the Reapers were in the Autarch bubble and I had a screen out to stop him charging me.

The Score

Primary: 25-15

Secondary: 12-4

Total: 37-19

Match Score: 2-1

Round 4 – Custodes

The Competition

Army List - Click to expand







Spearhead Detachment, Adeptus Custodes (103 power points) (2000 points) +1cp

HQ: Captain-General Trajann Valoris, (185)

(10pls) (185pts)

EL: Vexillus Praetor (80), Castellan Axe (14), Vexilla Magnifica (30), Eagle's Eye (free)

(6pls) (124pts) - WARLORD

FA: x6 Vertus Praetors (480), x6 Hurricane Bolters (60), x6 Interceptor Lances (0), x4 Misericordia (16)

(30pls) (556pts)

HS: Caladius Grav-Tank (120), Twin Arachnus Heavy Blaze Cannon (100), Twin Lastrum Bolt Cannon (20)

(12pls) (240pts)

HS: Caladius Grav-Tank (120), Twin Arachnus Heavy Blaze Cannon (100), Twin Lastrum Bolt Cannon (20)

(12pls) (240pts)

HS: Caladius Grav-Tank (120), Twin Arachnus Heavy Blaze Cannon (100), Twin Lastrum Bolt Cannon (20)

(12pls) (240pts)

FL: Ares Gunship (315), x2 Arachnus Heavy Blaze cannons (100), Arachnus Magna-Blaze Cannon (0)

(21pls) (415pts)

The Mission

ITC Mission 5 – Precious Cargo (4 objectives, each player moves one, bonus for holding the one your opponent moved)

Hammer and Anvil deployment.

The mission here helps me a lot – Precious Cargo is one my list is good at and that punishes low model-count lists. The deployment is a complete disaster though – it gives him tonnes of space to backline and blast me off the table.. The board was also pretty light, compounding this issue, although I was able to pick the end with the one good Reaper hiding spot (behind a spacecraft I’m not convinced belongs in this universe). All in all this would be uphill.

Time for a cunning plan…

The Plan

So. Right. Playing Alaitoc at the moment is a real up and down experience, because there’s a few armies that, to a greater or lesser extent, no-sell your bullshit defensive gimmick of stacking hit modifiers by being sufficiently accurate that it doesn’t stop them deleting you. Custodes are one of them – because they start on BS2+, even at -2 they’re hitting way more of the time than is comfortable, and when blaze cannons are involved those hits almost always turn into wounds, and take a huge chunk out of us. They’re also long ranged and mounted on fast platforms that ignore move/shoot penalties. All this adds up to a problem – if I start my planes on the board and this list goes first against me, I won’t have planes any more, and then I won’t be able to kill their stuff. This is a “roll off” first turn mission, but he massively under-drops me, so he’s going to take the first turn more often than not.

With that in mind, the plan I’d come up with for this matchup (and also Iron Hands) was to just deep strike my planes. Unlike some lists, I only have three, so while 3CP is a lot, it’s a very reasonable price to pay to actually give me a chance in the game. Crimson Hunters and Caladiuses are really good at killing each other, so by making sure that I can bring my hunters in and have them attempt to delete one (ideally Jinxed by the Hemlock which also turns up). The other thing I have is the reapers – they can take aim at one tank turn one and maybe delete it with a high roll, and if not at least finish it off turn 2. If I can get two Caladiuses down before they have a shooting phase against my planes then I’m in with a good shot – he can definitely still just point the Orion and the last tank at them and delete several, but if he swings and misses that’s probably then game over for him, as his stuff will start being picked up.

With that in mind, I need to backline far enough early on that his bikes can’t easily come and get me without taking a turn of being blown apart by all my close ranged stuff.

This is going to be a tough one and I expect it to look dire early on – he’s going to kill quite a bit of what i have on the board before I can hit back. We just have to stick to the plan and hope it works.

After making the call to deep strike the planes, I also decided to put the Raider on the board just as another target, especially as it actually has a decent shot of tanking one Caladius’s shooting because of its invuln and FNP. I put a five-model kabalite squad in deep strike to put on an objective in an emergency.

My Secondaries

  • Big Game Hunter
  • Gangbusters
  • Ground Control (we’re all in on the plan working here and tabling them)

Their Secondaries

  • Butcher’s Bill
  • Marked for Death
  • Big Game Hunter

The Summary

Seeds Round 4 - The Golden Horde
The golden horde deploys. Photo: Wings

The plan pretty much went off without a hitch. He deployed relatively defensively, so I couldn’t bring my Farseer up for a Doom without opening up to a bike charge, and I just kept it nice and defensive too. On his first turn he blew apart my Raider and a Wave Serpent (with Storm Guardians in it). I popped the Reapers out of their transport and had a go at blowing away a Caladius, but annoyingly only took it down to 4W (I’d thrown in a Starhawk Missile because it substantially upped the chance of a kill or taking it to min bracket, but inevitably rolled and re-rolled a 1 for the number of MWs). They faded into cover, while Wave Serpents cautiously moved up, the one the Reapers had jumped out of picking up the Storm Guardians. He then blew up the remaining two Serpents, so my turn two hammer blow was going to have to be big.

Seeds Round 4 - The Hammer Drops
The hammer falls. Photo: Wings

It was OK – I low rolled a bit, but he’d moved a Caladius out of the banner bubble to take an objective, and the planes managed to take this one out, while the Reapers finished off their earlier target. I also moved all my exposed infantry as far out of LOS as I could However, he then proceeded to low roll in what turned out to be a terminal fashion on turn 3 – one Caladius completely missed my planes, while the Orion was baited to move up to bomb my reapers and low rolled on MWs, only killing one and putting a wound on the Exarch. That gave me the opening I needed to go for the throat – the Orion was in the Doom/Jinx danger zone and got torn to pieces by a hail of Shurikens, the Autarch and the Hemlock, with enough shooting left to put the last Caladius into its bottom bracket, leaving it a vastly less relevant threat to my planes. My deep striking kabalites also slunk out of the webway near an exposed objective, ready to seize ground control now he could no longer afford to divert anything to deal with them.

Seeds Round 4 - No More Orion
An absence where once there was an Orion. Photo: Wings

That forced him to bring his bikes up to see if they could cut a swathe through my army and salvage something, but couldn’t close to melee in a single turn and had to deal with a turn of Doom-enhanced shooting.

Seeds Round 4 - Finale
The Autarch leads a glorious counter charge. Photo: Wings

I did miss the jinx so that didn’t kill all of them, but their attempt at a counter charge after my autarch failed his lead to one dying to overwatch, leaving too few to make a meaningful impact on the next turn. From there, I was able to pick up his remaining models over the next few turns, finishing the job on 6, having just elegantly put my bike warlock on the bonus objective to control all four.

The Takeaways

Yup, this is now my plan for the super inclement shooting matchups – it’s basically the best option I’ve got and it’s about to get even bettter thanks to Phoenix Rising, as I’ll cover in my review on Saturday. I felt extremely pleased with how this plays out – it’s a real hard mindset to get into to just accept that a quarter of your army is going in the bin over the first two turns and there’s nothing to do about it, but I had a plan and stuck to it rigorously and it really paid off.

The Orion is a very nasty model though. Yikes.

The Score

Primary: 19-13

Secondary: 12-5

Total: 31-18

Match Score: 3-1

Round 5 – Chaos

The Competition

Army List - Click to expand



TOTAL ARMY POINTS: pl 114pts 1991 pts


FREE RELIC: the helm of the 3rd eye 

nurgle chaos daemons battalion  pl 38pts   749pts  +5cp

HQ. poxbringer  PL 4  70 pts

balesword (free)

HQ. sloppity bilepiper PL3 60pts

marotter  (free)

HQ.  spoilpox scrvener PL4 95pts 

balesword (free), Distended maw (free), Disgusting sneezes (free)

TR.  3 X NURGLINGS PL 3 54pts 

3x nurglings 54pts 3xDiseased claws and teeth (free)

TR. Plaguebearers pl 12 235 pts

29x plaguebearers (203pts) 29x Plaguesword (free), 1x plagueridden (7pts) Plaguesword (free), daemonic icon (15pts), instrument of chaos (10pts)

TR. Plaguebearers pl 12 235 pts

29x plaguebearers (203pts) 29x Plaguesword (free), 1x plagueridden (7pts) Plaguesword (free), daemonic icon (15pts), instrument of chaos (10pts)

chaos Thousand sons  battalion  pl 53pts 797 pts 5 cp

HQ. Ahriman pl 7 (131pts)  Warlord

HQ. Deamon Prince Of tzeentch pl 9 (180 pts)

wings  (24 pts ), malefic talon (10pts), malefic talon  (free)

HQ. Deamon Prince Of tzeentch pl 9 (180 pts)

wings  (24 pts ), malefic talon (10pts), malefic talon  (free)

Tr. 5x Rubic marines pl7 96pts

4x Rubic marines (72pts), 4x inferno boltgun (free), aspiring sorcerer (24pts), force stave (free) ,inferno blot pistol (free)

 Magnus the red pl 23pts  (445pts)

Tr. 5x Rubic marines pl7 96pts

4x Rubic marines (72pts), 4x inferno boltgun (free), aspiring sorcerer (24pts), force stave (free) , inferno blot pistol (free)

Tr. 6x Rubic marines pl14 114pts

5x Rubic marines (90pts), 5x inferno boltgun (free), aspiring sorcerer (24pts), force stave (free) , inferno blot pistol (free)

super-heavy auxiliary  Detachment 23pl 445pts

LOW Magnus the Red

The Mission

ITC Mission 6 – Crucible of Champions

Search and Destroy deployment

Normally this is a substantially friendlier chaos list for me than the first one, having fewer nasty threats to deal with outside of Magnus, who is extremely dead if I take the first turn (and thanks to the Reapers, quite plausibly even if I don’t). However, this is about the worst possible mission/deployment combo to play this on – he can set up to score the bonus from one and there’s not much I can do to stop him till I’ve chewed through a lot of his stuff.

The Plan

The plan here is basically:

  • Kill Magnus
  • Kill everything else

While desperately trying to avoid falling too far behind on the primary, where he is heavily favoured early-mid game. Having the Thousand Sons units around helps, as I can divert fire from planes to take them out as and when needed, but this is still an extremely loseable game because of how uphill this mission is.

My intent is to send my spare Archon roving around one flank to threaten to disrupt his bonus – it’ll probably be the Nurgle characters sitting on them, and he’s very dangerous to them with the relic pistol.

My Secondaries

  • Kingslayer
  • Reaper
  • Headhunter

Their Secondaries

  • Big Game Hunter
  • Marked for Death
  • Recon

The Summary

Seeds Round 5 - Opponent's Deployment
Final boss Chaos horde. Photo: Wings

Seeds Round 5 - My Deployment
Can our plucky heroes do it? Photo: Wings

This just about held together but it was touch and go at points as i had a few real bad down spikes. I went first and deleted Magnus and things looked pretty good. However, he quickly flayed through my infantry screens with psychic and my shooting was pretty consistently dismal mid game (a particular low point being two Crimsons failing to kill two Nurgling bases) – the Reapers didn’t seem inclined to repeat their earlier performance of deleting whole swathes of Plaguebearers at once. I think this ended up a lot more painful again because of the mission – other than flowing his Plaguebearers forward onto the central objective, he was under basically no pressured to do anything other than bombard me with psychic death.

Still, with Magnus out of the way and my planes flying free I was gradually able to get the upper hand, taking out the Plaguebearers with the Reapers and Serpents, importantly managing to blow the second squad below the 20 threshold with a coordinated burst of shield discharges on a key turn. Things looked good, and I had a turn where the Hemlock was set up to try and take down one character off an objective and my Archon the other, leaving him unable to rack up the bonus. Unfortunately both failed, and things suddenly looked super dicey, especially as some Rubricae burst from an enclosed ruin to join a pile on against my Archon. Hero that he is, he managed to cling to his last wound with a clutch 6+ FNP against my opponent’s last attack, letting him turn round and finish off the Bilepiper, then fall out into hiding still near the objective, while my planes flew over and killed the Rubrics (which were at this point nearly the last things he had left, with the Princes having fought my army and lost after the Plaguebearers went down). That secured me hold more for the rest of the game an let me take the bonus on 6. His last remaining model was Ahriman, who cowered in an enclosed ruin until he could warptime out for a hold on 6.

The Takeaways

Another game I’m super pleased with – I cannot stress enough what a bastard of a mission/deployment combo this is against this army, and while going first and deleting Magnus is obviously huge, it was still always going to be a tough game. In the end I would still have won without that clutch FNP from the Archon, but it would only have been by a hair’s breadth rather than the relatively comfortable margin I ended up with (largely down to maxing my secondaries and denying him a lot).

I’m glad this tournament went well too, because honestly I should be super mad at my Crimson Hunters -they suuuuucked a lot of the time. I think failing to wipe two Nurgling bases is even more shameful than the earlier Rhino failure.

The Score

Primary: 19-18

Secondary: 12-5

Total: 31-23

Match Score: 4-1

Final Score

Match Score: 4-1

5th Place

Best Aeldari

I would have loved to make 4th so I could be on the 40kstats roundup (I got pipped by one point) but I also pipped fellow Goonhammer author Corrode to 5th place and best Aeldari by a single point, so I can’t complain. I have been told “my plaque will turn to ashes in my mouth” and that in any just universe (or at least, 5/6 of them) my Archon failed that 6+++ and lost me enough points to put him ahead.

More seriously, this felt like a refreshing return to form after the LGT – the army operated very well and I felt like I was on top of my game and making much bettter tactical choices.

Army Thoughts

Unfortunately we’re working with very constrained timescales this week I don’t have enough time to really dig into the army, but suffice it to say I like it enough that I’ve basically submitted the same list for Glasshammer this weekend, with the only real change being that Index options aren’t allowed, so the Autarch is missing some toys. I did consider making some deeper swaps, but with the Reapers around having him is super important (you make sure they’re in his bubble in case Guide fails).

He also helps against horde lists, as sitting with a Runes of Witnessing Farseer in a bubble of all the Serpents and DAs can really up the output there, especially if the Reapers are rocking in too. I almost chose to give him a fusion gun rather than a lance (the codex sheet can take either or) as I think he did more with that over this event but my model isn’t easily WYSIWYG for that and I’m away on business with no painting ability in the intervening week. In the end I stuck with the lance and added a storm guardian with a flamer to that squad – it was a relatively useful incidental nice-to-have at the London Open and LGT.

99% of the list remains the same, so I’ll have some more developed thoughts after another outing.

Dark Reapers felt really, really good in every game, and I’m struggling to think of too many matchups where they wouldn’t have done good work. Maybe it was a fluke – I guess we’ll see next week!

Wrap Up

I hope you’ve enjoyed this write up, and rest assured there are more to come – I should have a report from Glasshammer next week, followed by a preview for Blood and Glory the week after that. In the meantime, I’ll also be pulling together our thoughts for the Craftworlds part of Psychic Awakening: Phoenix Rising on Saturday, so elf fans check back in then!

If you want to let us know what you think about this report, talk to us about pretty much anything else or tell me Dark Reapers are costed just fine at 34PPM you can reach us at or via our Facebook Page.