Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Life, Warmahordes, and Everything. Wait what?

So a bit has happened since I've posted last, I got engaged (woohoo!), and uh, I purchased about 77 points and every 'Lock that the Legion of Everblight has (outside of Bethayne & Belphegore) from a gentleman at my FLGS.

I know what you're thinking, "Here we go again, another post crying about how GW's too expensive. Another one jumping ship." Well, you'd be wrong. Why did I buy (and intend on playing) this, allegedly, flavor of the month game? Because I'm bored.

Truth be told, I haven't played a game of 40k since early June (took 2nd place in a local Con tourney). I enjoyed myself a fair amount, and I still do well with my Black Legion, but as BB King would say, "the thrill is gone." Before SoonerCon, I had played one tune up game and hadn't played for months before that. Since the Blood Angel codex has come out, colors seem more dull, light seems dimmer, food less flavorful. Or maybe Daemon Princes and Plague Marines just don't get it done with the same *oomph* they used to have.

After watching basic Grey Hunters get as many attacks as my Khorne Berzerkers, and getting my face ripped off by Incubi and endless squads of Wyches with Haywire Grenades and Hydra Gauntlets, I've wanted something with a bit more bite. I genuinely considered starting a Dark Eldar army, but thought better of it.

It hasn't been all bad though, I've been playing a lot of Fantasy and enjoying the hell out of it. I play a solid army and my tactics are pretty sound too. In short, Lizardmen get it done. Fantasy has become my game of choice. But I do watch some Dark Elf and other Fantasy "glass cannon" style lists and I'm jealous. I've seen it in 40k for a year and I think to myself "I want that!"

It's kind of lingered with me for a while. It's just so different from the elite style of army that I run in 40k and Fantasy. I wanted to play Orks for a few months because they were just so different.

So I've decided to kill two birds with one stone: try a new system, and play a glass cannon. It's perfect, I not only love the models, but it's a style of play I've been pretty envious of for about a year now as well. I'm hoping it works out.

Oh and I'm also set to play my first game of Warmahordes, after watching all of one game, tonight.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Why Saurus Unit Champions are a Total Waste

So yeah, quick post. In my various games running a Life Slann, I've finally come to the realization that the unit champion for Saurus Warriors is a complete waste*.

For the incredible bargain that is 23 points you get the same ol' Saurus Warrior stat line, and, wait for it...


Surely, you say, then they must be able to take an extra weapon, piece of gear, additional wound, better weapon skill, or higher initiative right?
**** no! They don't get anything. The only benefit you get from paying the extra 12 points to upgrade (on top of the 11 you already paid), for which you could buy another Saurus and still save a point (or give it a spear), is the ability to challenge an opponent's champion or character. That's it. Oh and if you went ahead and just bought a regular Saurus instead, you'd net +1 attack and +1 wound.

The only real benefit to buying this upgrade is the fact that you can challenge opponent's champions or characters. Except for the fact that your Champ is going last the overwhelming majority of the time. You may get lucky and the opponent might whiff, then you get to make your 3 attacks back, and hope your average of 1.5 hits (against most) can wound the jerk.

Alternatively, if your opponent accepts with most Lords or Heroes you're going to need to be scraped off his boot. Thankfully, the points you just gave to your opponent towards combat resolution probably won't matter a ton since cold blooded makes breaking combat not-so-easy.

There is some benefit to upgrading and being able to challenge, namely trying to get Teclis or some other Wizard to decline the challenge, tie up a character for a turn or so, or get a nice string of luck and kill their Champion/Hero/Lord. Or to protect an Old Blood or Scar Vet (if you have one).

However, since challenges can be issued by either player in any close combat, regardless of whose turn it is, odds are pretty good that you'll end up losing a champion and possibly some overkill wounds to combat resolution. The nice thing about not having a champion? You don't have anyone for an intelligent opponent to challenge, and you gain 12 points per Saurus block that otherwise would have taken one.

I run 3 blocks of Saurus in a 2000 point army, so I end up gaining 36 points that can be spent adding Chameleons, upgrading my TG's magic banner, etc.

*Of course, if you're running a Light Slann, Saurus champions issuing challenges are much more effective. Speed of Light and/or Birona's Timewarp can make issuing challenges offensively pay off. With both, your champ is WS10, Initiative 10, ASF (rerolling missed hits), and 4 attacks. Very potent indeed.

Friday, April 1, 2011

StillCon '11 Wrap Up

Alrighty, so the Fantasy tournament at StillCon was a pretty cool time. My first impression was "Wow this is much smaller than I was expecting." I guess I didn't notice, or they edited it on their website, but the max for the Fantasy tourney was only 15 people. However, there were all of 7 of us (5 competitors, 1 TO, 1 judge). Evidently it was a better turn out than last year (2 people), so hey maybe next year there will be another 300% growth in players.

There were only 3 tables set up (talking to the TO before hand, he knew it was going to be a small turn out), all of them set up pretty similarly. One peice about 6" in from each corner with 1 big/medium sized piece dead-center, or 2 smaller ones dead-center.

Being that we only had 5 people there signed up, the TO and judge took alternating turns to play the TO's army so someone wouldn't have a complete bye. I don't know if they received max points playing the "bye" army, as I was one of two that did not play him. What I do know is that he took a fantastically painted Skaven army, and ended up going 2-1 on the day, oops!

The army breakdown was 2 Skaven, 2 Lizardmen, 1 Dark Elf, and 1 Chaos ****ing Dwarf army. What?!?!?! I'd thought Chaos Dwarves were the stuff of legends, myths you hear about, tales sown far and wide across the 7 internets to scare Fantasy players. When was the last time you could say you heard of a tournament where Chaos Dwarves made up 16.67% of the damn thing? Never, that's when.

I ended up taking 2nd place, going 2-1-0 with a major loss, major victory, and massacre. Played against Dark Elves (Meeting Engagement), Chaos Dwarves (Dawn Attack), and Lizardmen (Blood and Glory) respectively. I think I did pretty well all things considered. The Dark Elf player ended up winning the entire thing, and pretty much sat back on his board edge and shot me until I got to him. There were 3 things I wish I had done in that game:

1. Placed my Chameleons better, one group managed to take his Sorc down to 1 wound late in the game. Had I killed her, I may have been able to pull out a win. I ended up losing like 460-175 VP. As it was, he pretty much deployed in groups and protected his vulnerable targets. I ended up shooting at his forward most group of Crossbowmen. I should have placed them on the flank of his Black Guard so he'd have to waste a turn reforming if he wanted to try to charge me. Or tried to blow up his Shades.
2. Charged/Flamed/Whatever'd his small unit of shades, would have given me some extra points.
3. Been more patient. I kept pressing the issue with Throne of Vines, and he kept dispelling it. In what proved to be my biggest mistake, I finally got Throne off with Irresistible Force, but had already used my Cupped Hands. Had it not IF'ed, he had little to no dispel dice, and I had like 5 left to use on a Regrowth on a unit of 12 Saurus I had just that turn charged his ~12-15 Black Guard with. So my IF roll came up Power Drain, FML. So my Saurus proceed to get cut down, and I give up a 250 point block (+victory points for banners etc.). Had it gone on another turn or two I had that Black Guard squad in combat again, had wiped 1 of 2 Hydras, and was probably going to sweep that entire flank. I also didn't cast Dwellers as much as I should have (once maybe?), especially when you consider he used his dispel scroll on something turn 1.

I did end up learning from my loss and I exceeded my expectations, can't ask for a whole lot more than that can you?

Now it's time to go prime some Lizardmen before the OKC Thunder game tonight!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Down but Not Out

Apologies for the lack of posts since, well, forever. Nursing school owns me.

Fortunately, I am going to be able to make it to StillCon 2011.

The thing that sucks is that I will only be able to make it for one day this year, instead of two like I planned. I will be playing in the 2000 point WHFB tournament on Sunday, and will miss the 40k tournament Saturday. Having done a couple tournaments now, I know what to expect. The rub is that I've been playing Fantasy for all of 3 months with just under a dozen games under my belt (never playing any other mission than the standard 12" deployment). That and I'm not super solid on the rules like in 40k. Oh and I've played against or watched games with approximately 9 of the 14 armies.

Having said that I still think I will do well, though not as well as I did last year in 40k. I believe in setting realistic goals, and hopefully surprising the hell out of myself. The goal this year is to win one of the three games. Totally do-able.

I have play tested this army and it has done well. The only thing that was disappointing to me was how Light performed for me. I'm sure most of it is user error and not being 100% solid on all the mechanics. It's something I intend to try again sometime. That said, Life is incredibly easy to use, completely point-and-click. Let's do it:

General, BSB, Standard of Discipline, Cupped Hands of the Old Ones, Focus of Mystery (Life), The Becalming Cognition, Focused Rumination

3 blocks of 20 Saurus Warriors
Full Command

Temple Guard x 20
Full Command, Banner of Eternal Flame

2 groups of 5 Chameleon Skinks

2 sets of 2 Salamanders
1 with 1 extra handler (to be placed on the flank with the most targets as an added insurance policy)

Total: 2000 Points on the nose.

Honestly, I'd love to include a Skink Priest on an Engine of the Gods, but at 2000 points it's kinda hard to squeeze in without dropping a block of Saurus (leaving me 3 groups that can fight with any sort of staying power). That and I won't be getting that model in from my FLGS until tomorrow at the earliest.

I have sort of tweaked it a bit, originally I loved the idea of have the Temple Guard block having a Razor Standard (-3 to opponents armor save) paired with Light to give me a Flaming Magic missile.
Initiative 10/ASF to eliminate those cringe-inducing re-rollable hits from High Elves and turn the Lizzie's weakness into a strength? Check.
Can deal with heavily armored/deathstar blocks? Check.
Flaming magic missile for the super lame Hydras/other Regen or Flammable creature? Check.

Seems like a match made in heaven, and probably is in point values over 2000 points or for people who know what the hell they're doing. Unfortunately the Banner costs 35 more points (2 Temple Guard, though not a big deal - I know) and the Razor Standard was also a bit overkill. Strength 5 is street sweeping whatever it's hitting anyway, and my Temple Guard have yet to come across something they couldn't at least have enough staying power to not get through a game.

The 2 small groups of Chameleons give me the flexibility of one maxed unit of 10, while being able to take out multiple targets if necessary. The Chameleon Brave is not worth the 6 points for 1 point better BS.

Anyways I've droned on for entirely too long, but I would be remiss without plugging Dethron's regular "column" Friday Night Internet Fight, every Friday. It's hilarious (and a good blog too!). Give it a read.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

First Dinosaurz List (2000 points)

So I'm a jerk and I like "hard" lists, but this is my first attempt at one and will change over time (they always do). I like hand to hand and this is one thing this list does well, but its glaring weakness is not enough dakka. Anyways here it is:

Slann Mage-Priest
General, BSB, Sun Standard of Chotec, Cupped Hands of the Old ones, Becalming Cognition, Focused Rumination, Focus of Mystery (Life)

Temple Guard x 20
Full command, Banner of Eternal Flame

3 groups of 20 Saurus warriors
Full command

Chameleon Skins x 7
Full command (inasmuch as a Stalker can be considered full command)

2 groups of 2 Salamanders
1 extra handler per group (squad?)

I'm also unsure on the banners my Temple Guard and Slann are carrying, but that will get changed around as I play some more games. Other than that the only other thing I'm on the fence about is the Lore of Life, I really like what Speed of Light and a few other things do in Light, but life seems to be a more useful lore top to bottom. The only real drawback I see to Life is that it's incredibly easy to dispel things like Throne of vines. I really wish I could remember where I found an article talking about the virtues of Chameleon skinks, but basically what won me over to them instead of skink skirmishers is that they force shooting opponents to get at least -2 to their to hit roll for being skirmishers and for the chameleon special rule. If they're in hard cover that's -4. That and their ballistic skill is higher so I can get some extra wounds when moving and shooting.

Comments, advice, criticism?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Earthquakes, Dinosaurs, and Dark Eldar (Oh My!)

As some of you may know, I live in Norman, Oklahoma. We are pretty versed in the whole natural disasters thing, however, earthquakes isn't something Oklahomans are used to. Yesterday we had one rated either 4.5 or 5.1 depending on who you ask. Definitely an interesting day. At first I thought a truck had run into my apartment building, then I figured it was an earthquake moments later when I looked out my window and saw the other building moving too.

In other news, I've started my first step in building my Lizardmen army. Even though the iPhone camera quality is shotty at best, Sid approves of the Lizardmen battalion. I'm not quite through all the rules in the BRB (still have Special Rules and everything beyond that) but I do like the system. It's similar enough to 40k that I grasp things well without having to re-read, but it has that je ne se quoi of difference. Also for those of you who are strictly 40k players, go pick up a Fantasy BRB and flip through it! For someone who has played a geeky game or two, I wish every book could be this well done. The full color on every page is wonderful, the quality of the paper is good, hell even the ribbon that comes with it is a nice addition.

What's that? Complaining of me reviewing something that's months old? Well let's get behind the times again, only this time to the tune of weeks! I had a chance to flip through the new Dark Eldar codex today and I have to say they look wicked. Definitely not the army for me (as I like something not quite so fragile) but at a cursory glance I can say that I believe that they will indeed impact the meta game. If they can get up in your face they will rip you to shreds. Unfortunately for the IG parking lot, they have a number of ways to do so. I look forward to this shift, as my lack of long range options with CSM has left me bitter and cold.

Wait Lizardmen don't have much in the way of ranged shooting either?

Friday, October 1, 2010

Status Update & Tuck Fexas

Sorry for the lack of posts. I've been busy with Nursing School (read: studying for Pharmacology) and playing a bit of League of Legends.

In other news the OU-Texas game is this weekend. UT eat your heart out. But in all seriousness condolences to anyone in and around Austin for the gunman on their campus.

I'll try to get something of substance up tomorrow or Sunday.

Boomer Sooner!