Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Cold War

I am running my very first Warhammer Fantasy tournament in January, at Pandemonium in Garden City MI. The tournament package is posted at Pandemonium Game Store and at Shenanigans Hobby and Game Center, but here it is as well:

We've all had some time to get used to the new edition of Warhammer, now lets get to bashin! This is a 2500 point Warhammer Fantasy Battles tournament. The tournament will consist of THREE rounds of gaming. Tournament scoring will be based on battle points earned during your games, as well as scoring for your army composition, painting and appearance, and sportsmanship during games.

January 22, 2011

Pandemonium, Garden City, Michigan. Pandemonium is located at 1858 Middlebelt, which is 2 blocks south of Ford Road, on the east side of the street. Pandemonium's phone number is (734) 427-2451.

Brad Schwandt

Tournament Registration / Fee
The maximum size of the event is 30 players. Registration is $15 due on the day of the event. Army lists MUST be preregistered with the organizer by 11:59PM January 15th. Event sign-up and list registration may be done by emailing

Awards and/or prizes will be awarded for the following categories:
Best Overall (Tournament Champion)
Best General (Combined Battle Points and Composition)
Best Sportsman
Best Army (Combined Appearance and Composition)

Players must bring all materials needed to play including: Dice, measuring device, templates, models, rule books, army books, FAQs, etc. Bring a pen or pencil and a calculator to figure out victory points.

10:00am to 10:45am Registration
11:00am to 1:30pm Round 1
1:30pm to 2:30pm Lunch break, Appearance Judging
2:30pm to 5:00pm Round 2
5:15pm to 7:45pm Round 3
7:45pm to 8:00pm Calculate Final Scores
8:00pm to 8:15pm Awards

Army Lists
You must bring at least FIVE copies of your army list that are clearly legible and lists out all the details of your characters and units. Players must hand one copy into the judges and provide a copy of their list to their opponents at the conclusion of each round. Army Builder printouts are acceptable (but players are responsible for double checking points costs there are sometimes errors in the files especially for newer armies!).

The default in regards to army lists for this tournament is that army lists will be exchanged for review with your opponent before each game (e.g. this is a open list tournament). If you are using hidden models (e.g. assassins, fanatics, etc) you must include them on your army list, but do not have to assign them to a specific unit on the army list. Prior to the start of each game you must write down which unit the hidden models are assigned to and hand it in to the judges. Alternatively, if both players agree, games may be played using closed army lists.

Army Requirements and Restrictions
(A) You must use the same army list for each game.
(B) Players may field an army of up to 2,500 points and not a point more! Regardless of size, the armies will use the requirements and allowances for 2,500 point armies (i.e. 25% Core Choices, no more than 25% Lords allowed, etc.)
(C) Armies do not have to be painted (but players are highly encouraged to do so as painting / appearance is part of the tournament scoring!)
(D) WYSIWYG (What you see is what you get) is in effect. For characters all weapons and armour should be modeled. Units must have a majority of the models making up a unit armed correctly (it is permissible per the main rules to have a minority of the models armed differently).
(E) Remember that for wizards with a choice of magic lores, you must indicate which lore each wizard will be using for the entire tournament on your army list.
(F) No Special, Named, or Unique characters are allowed (Teclis, Queek, Archaon, etc). If you have any questions about specific characters, contact the tournament organizer.
(G) There are 2 banned items: Power Scroll and Book of Hoeth

Each participant in the tournament will play three battles. These scenarios will be based out of the 8th Edition rulebook and it is encouraged that players create lists that will be able to run operate within those scenarios. Players may earn up to 20 points each battle, based on a 20-0 scoring system. There will also be bonus points based on scenario modifiers worth up to 4 points each round.

Nobody likes to participate in Warhammer events with people who behave (or smell!) like River Trolls. To encourage everyone who participates in the tournament to act in an appropriate manner, each participant may earn up to 15 points for good sportsmanship. Your opponents will be scoring you in this category.

Armies do not have to be painted, however, each participant may earn up to 15 points for the appearance and completion of their army. The points are awarded by the judges and may include the following criteria: Is your entire army painted? Is your entire army based? How much conversion work is done in the army? Are there details in the army that bring it together as a cohesive force? Was extra time and effort put into the character models? Is the army on a display board?

Each player will also be rated on his army composition after each match by his opponent. This will earn up to 10 points towards your tournament score, based on the criteria: Is this a well balanced and enjoyable list? Is this an average list that I would play against regularly? Is this list utter cheese / filth / beardiness?

Only the following armies are permitted at this tournament. Note that players may only field armies from the current version of each of the Warhammer Army Supplements.

- Warhammer Armies: Beastmen
- Warhammer Armies: Bretonnia
Daemons of Chaos
- Warhammer Armies: Daemons of Chaos
Dark Elves
- Warhammer Armies: Dark Elves
- Warhammer Armies: Dwarfs
- Warhammer Armies: Empire
High Elves
- Warhammer Armies: High Elves
- Warhammer Armies: Lizardmen
Ogre Kingdoms
- Warhammer Armies: Ogre Kingdoms
Orcs & Goblins
- Warhammer Armies: Orcs & Goblins
- Warhammer Armies: Skaven
Tomb Kings
- Warhammer Armies: Tomb Kings
Vampire Counts
- Warhammer Armies: Vampire Counts
Warriors of Chaos
- Warhammer Armies: Warriors of Chaos
Wood Elves
- Warhammer Armies: Wood Elves

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Adepticon 2011

Have you signed up for Adepticon yet? Because I have. AdeptiCon 2011 will take place on April 1st through the 3rd at the Westin Lombard Yorktown Center in Lombard, IL. I will be playing in Friday's 3000 point 'Ard Boyz style Big Brawl, as well as the Saturday 4-game 2200 point Warhammer Championships. I am very interested in both tournaments, because last year there were huge comp restrictions, and this year with the new edition there are almost none. I will be playing Skaven in both tournaments. I have already slowly started my High Elves, but I don't know if I will have a completed and competitive army before next April.

I am also hoping to put together a team for Sunday's Warhammer Team Tournament as well to keep me busy all weekend, but if not I may look into some modeling and painting workshops. This will be my first Adepticon ever after having to cancel plans last year.

If any other Skaven players are interested in teaming up for the Tournament, let me know.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Results are in, 2010 Ard Boyz


1st - Skaven + Dark Elves (tie)
2nd - Dark Elves
3rd - Skaven


1st - Dark Elves
2nd - Dwarfs
3rd - Skaven


1st - Daemons of Chaos
2nd - ???
3rd - Daemons of Chaos

Sunday, October 24, 2010

2010 Ard Boyz Finals Chicago

3 days and 650 miles later, Ard Boyz 2010 is over. Thank you to anyone who helped me playtest against specific match ups, character combos, offered to let me borrow miniatures, and hooked me up on short notice so everything went smoothly for me. To say that the tournament went off without a hitch would be a lie, so I will get into that later, but first the results. I got third place overall, and the placings for the tournament were 1st (tie) Skaven and Dark Elves, 2nd Dark Elves, and 3rd Skaven (me). I got a nifty dagger trophy, zero prize support (for anyone at the tournament), and I guess a ticket/invitation to the Las Vegas GT in 2011.

 The third place trophy dagger.

To start, let me explain the battle points. The TO stated he hadn't gotten the rules pack for 'Ard Boyz until the morning of, and he had already printed out all the scoring sheets, so we were going to be using his scoring for the 'Ard Boyz Finals. 5 points for a Massacre, 4 points for a Major, 3 points for a Minor, and 2 for a Draw or something similar. There were the normal 4 points bonus per scenario. There were also no Victory Points scored, so there was no tie breaker.

 The Bunker and the Tournament hall.

Game 1, table 14.

 None of his Marauders were wysiwyg, but I didn't complain.

Game 1 I drew a Warriors of Chaos player from Georgia. In his list was 2 Sorcerer Lords (one on a disc with tzeentch and one on foot with shadow magic), 2 blocks of 50 marauders of khorne with great weapons, 2 blocks of 18 Warriors (nurgle and tzeentch), and 2 warshrines of tzeentch. My deployment was fine enough. I set my cannons back far enough but with line of sight. My Bell had clan rats, storm vermin, and both hell pits around it on the right side of the board. On the other side of a watchtower that was directly in the center of the board I place my other slaves and plague furnace unit. I forgot to scout my night runners, and then forgot to infiltrate them until turn 3 (one unit never came in).

I made sure to even post in my pregame post I wanted to remember the Screaming Bell ringing. I forgot the entire game until the last 2 turns! On top of that, it was probably the worst game of magic I have played in 8th edition, though I didn't lose any casters to the warp. Major props to my opponent for using his Infernal Puppet FLAWLESSLY. First turn, miscast Plague, and my foot Grey Seer loses 1 magic level. Second turn, miscast warp lightning with the bell seer on TWO DICE, lose THREE magic levels and I am left only with crack's call. Turn three, miscast with the foot seer again with the thirteenth spell, and lose his remaining 3 magic levels! Amazing. Amazingly bad.

The rest of the army sure picked up the slack though. I charged a large unit of slaves (to deny steadfast) and both Hell Pit Abominations to the right side horde of Marauders. I annihilated them and one abomination overruns into the Tzeentch Warriors. Next turn the second Abom charges the Tzeentch Warriors and the two finish the unit and the foot lord. They later kill a warshrine, though one dies.

On the other side of the board, the Plague Furnace cut through the other Marauders before getting smashed my the Nurgle Warriors. I then use Slaves and multiple Warlock Engineer speedbumps to keep the unit from doing anymore damage to my army.

The game ends and I lost the Furnace unit, an Abomination, and a couple Warlock Engineers. Major Win with two bonus battle points.

Game 2, Table 4.

 Half the army was not wysiwyg, but again, no complaints.

For this game, I played a cool kid who brought his Daemons of Chaos led by a Bloodthirster, with 40 Bloodletters with a Herald, 30 Horrors with a Herald and The Changeling, 26 Plaguebearers with a palanquin herald bsb, 5 hounds, 3 flamers, and The Masque.

I set up first and the majority of my army was deployed in the center, with a building splitting my deployement zone. I had a WLC in the building, a WLC on the far right flank, and everything else in the center. My opponent rolled and placed his horde of Bloodletters on the right flank and the Bloodthirster on the left. Most other units were in the center.

I used slaves and Warlock speedbumps again to slow and angle the Bloodletters until the final 2 turns of the game. They were the biggest threat to me. The Bloodthirster was similarly slowed with the Storm Banner, and then by sacrificing units of Storm Vermin and Clan Rats to it, keeping it away from my important unit. My opponents biggest mistake was charging his Plaguebearers into my Plague Monks and Plague Furnace... who had the Banner of Eternal Flame. They smashed through the unit and his bsb in 2 rounds, and things fell apart from there. Though I will say he vaporized one Hell Pit Abomination because we forgot to roll the sight distance as per the scenario both first turns! All the forgetting was hurting me. Though I did remember to ring the bell every time this game, and rolled Scorch ever single turn after the first!

After I cut through the Plaguebearers and BSB, my Abomination, a giant unit of Slaves, and the Plague Monks were able to multi charge the Horrors to destroy them. MNore magic and the amazing Doomrocket was able to waste away Bloodletters until a Slave/Hell Pit multi charge finished them off and finished the game.

I had lost Storm Vermin, some Warlocks, one WLC, and a Hell Pit again, but Massacred my opponent and recieved full bonus points.

Game 3, Table 1!

This game was marred for me because of a few things. My opponent and I had an argument for about 30 minutes when he cast Dwellers Below. PAGE 10 of the rulebook states: where a model has more than one value for the same characteristic, a characteristic test is always taken at the highest value. He cast Dwellers on my Bell unit. I lost 20 of 40 Clan Rats, but when I rolled a 5 for the Bell (the Strength of the Rat Ogres), he claimed the Grey Seer should be killed because he is only Strength three (which is incorrect). The judge would not rule in either players favor because he didn't want to effect the outcome of the tournament (WHAT?!), and after arguing for over 25 minutes, we diced off for it and I won.

In addition to this the rounds were cut short to 2 hours and 30 minutes, because the TO wanted to leave early. Combined with the argument, we only played THREE TURNS on table one of the 'Ard Boyz finals final game.

My opponent set up and left his flank exposed to my Gutter Runner scouts, and I set up all 10 at exactly 12" away from his war machine gunline. He placed a unit of 10 Flagellants in the building that represented our tower. I flanked the tower in my own deployment zone with each Abom and Slave unit, with my Bell in the dead center. It was honestly the best deployment I could have asked for, as the Aboms and SLaves multi charge through his units, taking out the large unit of halberdiers, and the other Abom on his own flank charging the Greatswords and wiping them out. At the end of the game, my opponent had 6 knights on the board, 2 cannons, his popemobile, and the unit in the tower. I had lost a unit of Gutter Runners and 2 Cannons, no other full units lost.

Where I lost the game was the first turn magic phase. I cast the 13th Spell on the tower, killed all 10 flagellants, and placed my own Clan Rats in the tower. I should have set up to cast Crack's Call and just destroy the building from the get go like I had designed my list around!!! After that, I was unable to ring the bell or cast Crack's call in the rest of the limited game. A giant unit of swordsmen overtook the Clan Rats in the tower, and won the game as the rest of the Empire army was massacred around them.

I still scored all 4 bonus points for the final scenario. After the results were tabulated, there was a THREE WAY TIE FOR FIRST. The judge then went back after the tournament was over, and we had been playing one way all day, and redid the battle points according to the original rules. There was still a tie for first, but I guess that is better than a three way tie. The results were:

1st- Skaven
1st- Dark Elves
2nd- Dark ELves
3rd- Skaven

On a lighter note, results and the final game aside, I had a great trip and met a lot of great people. I played games with fellow Warhammer nerds from across the country, went drinking with new friends from Minnesota and Louisiana, and got to play at an amazing venue. Next time hopefully they actually run an event as advertised... with correct battle points, tie breakers, correct game time limits, and judges who will actually rule on something to prevent the loss of game turns to a rules disagreement.

Here are some more Skaven-related pictures. I would have liked to get more of everything, but was busy.

Awesome Abomination custom build.

Great custom display board for some Skaven. They are under ground!

Saturday, October 23, 2010


What better to do when you wake up at 7am the day of the tournament, than to blog in your hotel room! Here is the final list for today. I was able to get a practice game in yesterday to get a feel for the location and what I have on the table. I have to say, the Chicago Battle Bunker is COOL. I already met a few guys I "know" from different forums on the internet and went drinking with a guy who flew in from New Orleans, so before even playing a single torunament game I am having a great time. There were a few things I need to correct for today's games, like forgetting to ring the Screaming Bell, but I am confident in my list and ready to go. Good luck to anyone else playing in the 'Ard Boyz finals today.

Hotel Room Skaven!

The List:

Grey Seer, screaming bell, dispel scroll
Grey Seer, power scroll

Plague Priest, plague furnace, ironcurse icon
Chieftain, bsb, halberd, shield, standard of discipline
Warlock Engineer, doomrocket
Warlock Engineer
Warlock Engineer
Warlock Engineer

20 Storm Vermin, full command, storm banner
40 Clan Rats, full command
30 Clan Rats, full command
45 Slaves
45 Slaves

30 Plague Monks, full command, banner of eternal flame
5 Gutter Runners, poison, slings
5 Gutter Runners, poison, slings

Hell Pit Abomination
Hell Pit Abomination
Warp Lightning Cannon
Warp Lightning Cannon

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Tournament Rankings for 8th edition so far

I browsed through all of the 8th edition tournaments posted by Rankings HQ on Twitter and their site that I could find. That is 22 total tournament results posted using 8th edition rules. I awarded 5 points for first place, 3 points for second place, and 1 point for a third place finish. This is of course limited to the results I am presented with, and doesn't include every 8th edition tournament across the world, but gives us a look at the general field. Lets have a look at how 8th edition is treating our armies:

40: Daemons of Chaos
34: Dark Elves
32: Lizardmen
27: Vampire Counts
20: Warriors of Chaos
11: Skaven
11: Empire
7: High Elves
6: Dwarfs
6: Beastmen
3: Orcs and Goblins
3: Wood Elves
1: Dogs of War

Starting High Elves

I picked up a box of the new and amazing looking White Lions this weekend, and used my 'Ard Boyz round 2 prize support for more White Lions and Dragon Princes... so High Elves are my next Fantasy army! I like the idea of an elite army to be a break from the massive Skaven hordes. There seem to be a good amount of High Elf players in my area lately after the new edition and Island of Blood, but with the new miniatures I couldn't resist.

The plan is for a White Lion heavy list. They really are my favorite unit. And today there is a great new article on Games Workshop's website with the Color's of Ulthuan. I was already thinking about a nice red and gold color scheme for my army. But the article makes it perfect to run them as Aryth Pass Guard! The Aryth Pass is one of the secret pathways through the mountains of Chrace, and the 4th Company of the Aryth Pass Guard's color's are red!

As for a preliminary army, take a look at this and please critique. This is to fit with the Chrace and  the 4th Company Aryth Pass Guard.

290 Archmage, level 4 Shadow, seerstaff of saphery (mindrazor, pit of shades, miasma, withering)
184 Noble, bsb, dragon armor, great weapon, banner of the world dragon
145 Noble, barded steed, dragon armor, great weapon, potion of strength, dragonhelm
335 25 Lothern Sea Guard, full command, banner of eternal flame
295 30 Spearmen, full command
480 30 White Lions, full command
380 20 Phoenix Guard, full command, banner of sorcery
200 5 Dragon Princes, full command
140 Lion Chariot
050 Great Eagle


Monday, October 18, 2010

Finals Scenarios are out

GW has released the scenarios for Saturday's finals. At the very least it gives me some time to practice one or two before Saturday.

Scenario 1: The Pass is Ours!

Great. Battle for the Pass. The scenario bonuses add a battle point for killing the enemy General and BSB, as well as for having more Core units alive, and for the largest Core unit within 6" of the center of the board. All hills are Scree Slopes as well. Against a non-gunline army I will have the advantage to wait on the rear board edge with my cannons and magic, and wait out the other army. Of course, if I draw an enemy hunline I will have to rush everything forward and hope the Storm Banner gives me enough time to get to them.

Scenario 2: I Hate the Mornings

Dawn Attack, with some "night fight" rules. At the start of each of the first two turns, roll an artillery die and multiple by 3. This is how far each of your units can see that turn. If a misfire is rolled, the sun clears up both army's visibility for the rest of the game. I've played a few Dawn Attack practice games, and while it does throw off your game if you have a poor deployment, I am not worried about this scenario. Bonus points are for a unit in your opponents left flank, having more core units alive, killing all enemy wizards, and for casting a spell with irresistible force.

Scenario 3: We've got to get the Watchtower... (etc)

And of all the scenarios to be the final round, they pick Watchtower. I don't think they could have picked a worse scenario to end 'Ard Boyz. So you automatically win for the watchtower at the end of the game, and the game length is random. How horrible of an idea for the largest national tournament in the country. At least I can destroy the tower and force the game to end on my terms. I have both the Bell's Deafening Peals and Crack's Call to handle that for me. I also have one unit of 20 Storm Vermin to hold the tower if I win it through deployment. Bonus points for the scenario are for having no units in your deployment zone, for taking the center from your opponent, for having your General alive and not fleeing at the end of the battle, and for destroying a unit that was in horde formation at any time.

And there we go. I think my list is built well enough to handle all three scenarios. Now I need to read up on the building rules...

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Beat this list.

At least I am hoping this is a list to beat, because I am planning on taking it next weekend. Have a look and let me know what you think. It is nasty, that is for sure, but I'm hoping it also has an answer for everything so long as I don't screw up my chances to use those answers! Scenarios aren't released yet, but this is otherwise my final list unless there are drastic scenarios. I may try to get a game in with it this weekend or next Tuesday, but next Thursday night my models will be packed and I will be driving to Chicago on Friday! If anyone else will be there, shoot me an email.

3000 point 'Ard Boyz Skaven

305 Grey Seer (G), lvl 4: ruin and plague, talisman of preservation, warp energy condenser
305 Grey Seer, lvl 4: plague and ruin, power scroll, foul pendant

280 Plague Priest, lvl 1: plague, plague furnace, ironcurse icon, dispel scroll
100 Chieftain, bsb, talisman of endurance
065 Warlock Engineer, brass orb
045 Warlock Engineer, obsidian amulet
045 Warlock Engineer, doomrocket

285 30 Storm Vermin, full command, storm banner
155 30 Clan Rats, full command, shields
155 30 Clan Rats, full command, shields
092 45 Slaves, musician
092 45 Slaves, musician

245 30 Plague Monks, full command, banner of eternal flame
090 5 Gutter Runners, slings, poisoned attacks
090 5 Gutter Runners, slings, poisoned attacks

235 Hell Pit Abomination
235 Hell Pit Abomination
090 Warp Lightning Cannon
090 Warp Lightning Cannon


20% Lord - 610
18% Hero - 535
26% Core - 779
14% Spec - 425
22% Rare - 650

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Triple Hydra + Cauldron

The best games are the ones you lose, have fun, and learn a lot. Last night mi_whplayers of the Great Lakes Warhammer League was kind enough to proxy a horrendous Dark Elf list with 3 Hydras, Cauldron of Blood, a level 4 and a level 2 Dark mage, Lord on cold one, BSB on cold one with ASF banner, a giant cold one deathstar, 2 units of shades, 2 units of spearmen, and 2 units of crossbowmen. It would be a good practice before 'Ard Boyz coming up. I have to say, while intimidating as the list sounds, my list did have answers for everything he had... I just made enough mistakes by a small margin that I lost my chances to really capitalize.

First mistake, I was really looking forward to Crack's Calling a Hydra. I decided to drop Crack's Call when I rolled it with my General to give it to the Power Scroll wielding Grey Seer. I should have kept it on my General and do what I normally do by rolling 4 Plague Spells with the second Grey Seer. Not having Plague was the biggest mistake I made, denying myself the tool I needed to deal with the cold one deathstar. I really thought my deployment was excellent, and how much it helped me in the beginning (until I started screwing things up for myself) is showing experience of a lot of 8th Edition games in that regard.

My cannon was great until it blew up second shot. That's why we roll the dice though. Then my second Grey Seer miscast and instantly died. Damn, that one hurt, as I had power dice left, my power scroll left, and hadn't cast any of those nasty spells! Also first turn, my Hell Pit ran a whopping 16 inches (!) right into my own Gutter Runners, killing an entire unit. I had to laugh at that one, because they were exactly 16 inches away from it. After that I was a bit too timid with the Abominations, when I should have just ran them down the Dark Elves' throats.

I did use some good tactics to kill one Hydra in combat with Storm Vermin and an Assassin with flaming attacks, and sneaking my Brass Orb Warlock in between 2 Hydras to kill another. The Slave buses were great in their role of holding up the cold ones for most of the game, until the very end when they broke through and tore up the last of my army.

The only thing I regretted was not putting my Assassin in with a unit of Gutter Runners and Infiltrating to go after the Cauldron. The Assassin had The Other Trickster's Shard, which would have had the Cauldron rerolling ALL of its ward saves vs the poison wielding Assassin and Gutter Runners.

The game was a Major Loss, but a major learning experience and a great look at a truly 'Ard Boyz Dark Elf list. Now I know what to expect and how to counter things I didn't do well against, and what did work. I'm going to try to get a game in against Kairos Daemons next week, and I think I will be ready.

I made some more revisions to my list as well. No Assassin after this game. I gave him a try but he isn't for me in this format. I added more Plague Monks and the Furnace back as well. I really needed another strong hammer to really kill stuff. As for a ranged hammer, I dropped the Doomwheel for another Warp Lightning Cannon. The WLC is almost as good for killing monsters, but is much much MUCH better at killing any sort of infantry as well.

Monday, October 11, 2010

New WFB FAQs released.

GW has released version 1.2 of many of the armybook FAQ's. Head over to Games Workshop to download your new FAQ.

The new addition to the Skaven FAQ clears up the Screaming Bell's Scorch result, and now casts it for FREE with no expended power dice. That is a nice boost for the Bell.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Questions about my list

I was answering questions about my 'Ard Boyz list for a fellow Skaven player planning a GT (no comp) list, so I figured I would post it up as a blog post. Here goes.

What exactly was your approach in your games?  Did you play a hold back strategy and use the 13th spell, Plague, Scorch, and the Warp Lighting Cannon to do damage, then finish off units with combo charges from the Abominations/Doomwheel/ranked units? 

I charge forward with the Hell Pits and Slaves, and hang back with most everything else to shoot and go heavy on magic. The Doomwheel is a mobile firing platform. I rarely charge it if possible. Otherwise the HPA's and magic do most of the work, supported by shooting.

What roll did the Storm Vermin play, and do you feel they are making up their extra points over standard clanrats? 

I do feel they make up their points. They also hold a magic banner. Usually it is the Storm Banner, but in the finals I am running them with the flaming attacks banner. I5 WS5 is damn good in the new edition.

How did you place your characters?  I guess it depends on what you are facing, but with limited units and the danger of facing Dwellers, I’m having trouble deciding how to divide up their placement on the lists I’ve made so far.  Did you spread out both the Grey Seers and the BsB if facing that?  I also noticed that your second list pulled in the magic resist/ward save combo.  Did you have assassination issues with Death Magic in your first round?

It depends on what army. I really only fear Dwellers as far as spreading my characters around. I definitely want my BSB in range of the HPA's and Slaves, but in my finals list my BSB actually has MR3 to protect both Grey Seers (unless I am facing Life magic). I didn't have issues with Death, but better to have and not need than need and not have. I run naked Warlocks in Slave units, and them run them out as redirectors or speedbumps.

Did you use your Gutter Runners for war machine hunting?  I have trouble getting excited about them in that roll, considering the earliest you can hope to charge is turn 3.  What else did you use them for in your games?

Yes, almost exclusively war machine hunters and monster hunters (they love to kill Eagles). I actually never really charge with them, always keep back and shoot with them and their poisoned slings. They are also great for scouting to block enemy vanguard moves, and killing the fast cavalry.

My rare selections will likely be 2 hellpits, 2 cannons, and 1 Catapult.  What did you find the Doomwheel useful for in your games? 

I do. It loves to kill monsters and monstrous infantry. I have playtested the PCC a few times and haven't liked it. I like the reliability of the Doomwheel (even if its movement is unreliable, it auto hits 3 times every turn).

I loved the Priest/Furnace in 7th, but have trouble getting excited about it in 8th.  In the games I’ve run in 8th, the one use 3+ ward save for the Priest has paid dividends since both he and the Furnace are hit by a single cannon ball.  Did you find you had enough other priority targets that kept the Furnace from going down, or did it often die in your second round games?

I had PLENTY of targets with 2 Hell Pits and a Doomwheel, but I am still dropping the Furnace for the finals. It's a whole lot of points. I am replacing it with 6 Rat Ogres who are faster, and I think more killy. Better on the opposite flank of the Doomwheel to assist the Hell Pits.

Did you take the 2 clanrat units specifically to fill out your standards, or did you find another use for them?  Slaves just seem like a better investment if you won’t have to face a match needing standards.  

Yes for banners, and for units to place my characters. I love using my Slaves to rush forward and tie up units for my HPA's to smash into. I need somewhere safe to store my Grey Seers.

My character setup is close to yours, I’ll just be using Engineers with magic resists to keep all 3 important characters at 3+ ward vs. magic.  One will have have MR1 with the general with 4+ base save giving 3+, and the other will have MR2 to add to the BsB and other Seer’s 5+ ward saves for a 3+ total as well.

In my 'Ard Boys finals list I am running my BSB with MR3, and he will be hiding in the second rank of one or both Grey Seer's unit.

I'll be posting up my final round 'Ard Boyz list in the next couple of weeks after I get some more time in play testing the changes I am dreaming up.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Top Five Skaven Units

I was checking out Warseer this morning, and in the new ETC Comp Restriction thread there was a mini debate sidetrack over the ranking of powerful Skaven units. While writing my list for the final round of 'Ard Boyz this is definitely something I have been thinking about with every version of the list I write. So, lets have a look at what I believe the top 5 most powerful units and/or items are in the Skaven army.

5. Warlock Engineer with a Doomrocket. For 45 points you get easily one of the best point return units in the game. This little guy is one-use-only, but he about always makes his points back and sometimes makes upwards of ten times his points back! The Doomrocket is a weapon that is random range, you have to guess between 4d6 and 10d6 for range then roll randomly. It must fly in a straight line but you do not have to have line of sight. If you roll 3 or more 1's you will misfire, but you're never misfiring because you should always be holding on to your Doomrocket until your enemy is within a minimum of 5d6 range (preferably the average of 4d6), or even better use it to shoot down the flank of the entire army after you're Skitterleaped this cheap kamikaze. The payload is a large blast at strength 5, which is enough to remove entire units of Elves and do serious damage to anything else.

4. Warp Lightning Cannon. I honestly think this the best artillery piece in the Skaven army, and one of the best in all of Warhammer. It is basically a stone thrower and cannon combined (it effects a line and then also a template at the end of the line), and is much more accurate than previously. It automatically denies armor saves, even if you roll strength 2 on the bounce for the hit strength. Combined with the Doomrocket, I have taken out an entire unit of 40 Halberdiers with good shots, because this thing does massive damage. I prefer it against infantry and to rely on a Doomwheel for killing monsters, but remember that templates hit all parts of a monster. Even if I roll a 2 for strength when I hit your Stegadon, a 6 will wound, you will get no armor save, and I will do d6 wounds. Harsh.

3. Gutter Runners. Scouts are much, much better in the new edition. Gutter Runners are some of the best, but you need to upgrade them. Scouting is excellent with poison weapons, because any 6 to hit on war machines will wound. Combine that with a minimum size unit, upgrade to slings, and the new skirmish rules that allow you to march and fire, and you are throwing 10 dice per unit of Gutter Runners to possibly wipe a war machine turn 1. 2 sixes means a dead bolt thrower, 3 sixes usually a dead cannon. Not only can they scout and be 12 inches away, but if you are worried about getting killed first turn, Gutter Runners can infiltrate instead and come in on turn 2 or later from your opponents board edge and wipe out all of his war machines then.

2. Hell Pit Abomination. Yes, I rated the Hell Pit number 2 and not number 1. The Hell Pit is "weaker" in 8th edition, it's true. But, he will still win entire games by himself with some good dice rolling, and maybe even some good tactics. I like to run mine on the flank and to double charge with Skaven Slaves. Random Movement rule of 3d6 means you can only "Hold" vs his charges, and he also pursues and overruns 3d6. He does impact hits, random attacks, and thunderstomp. He tears through heavy knights, can wound other monsters with multiple wounds, and if you charge him into an infantry unit and roll Avalanche of Flesh, you're opponent is pulling off models by the entire rank after 4d6 s6 hits (d6 impact hits, 2d6 hits, and then d6 thunderstomp hits). He still is very vulnerable to any sort of flaming attack that will deny hit regeneration, and not many people will ever take warp spikes with the changes to magic resistance.

1. Grey Seer with the 13th Spell. The Grey Seer is my number one choice. He starts the game with d3 Warpstone Tokens for free power dice. Anything that generates extra power dice in 8th edition is worth its weight in gold. He also has access to one of the most powerful spells in Warhammer as a signature spell! He can always have the Dreaded 13th Spell, which is amazing vs any small units with characters in them or elite armies where every model counts. You can cast with up to 6 dice at any spell, and if you throw 6 dice at the 13th spell, you have a 50% chance of getting it off, not counting the chance of rolling double 6's (1,2,3,4,5,6 = 21 + magic level 4 = 25). Combined with that power, you have plenty of items to heal wounds, more warpstoen tokens that don't take arcane item slots, and access to both powerful Skaven Lores of magic. Throw in some level 1 or 2 casters and your Grey Seer will have exactly the spells you want for him.

Honorable mention goes to Skaven Slaves. They are the rock of the Skaven army. Possible leadership 10 huge and steadfast units are what the rest of this list do what they are meant to do to win you the game. Better yet the huge unit of 40 Slaves with a musician is only 82 points. Expendable, long lasting tar-pits, and to make it better you can shoot and cast spells into enemies in combat with them! But Slaves by themselves are not powerful though, which is why they are an honorable mention. The fit in perfectly with the overall synergy of the Skaven army, and are a must-have. If the list was a "Top 6" they would be number 6!

Yes the Skaven are strong in the new edition. I believe they are top 3 along with Lizardmen and Dark Elves. Maybe you can use this list to tailor your Skaven to be the best rats on the block, or maybe you can read up on exactly what you should be killing first when you see that ratty horde across the table from you!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Hobby update: Plagueclaw Catapult, etc

I changed my list for the final 'Ard Boyz round, so I needed to do some modeling! Particularly a Plagueclaw Catapult. I decided to use an Orc and Goblin Rock Lobba with minor modifications, and I also needed more Plague Monks to fill out my newly expanded Furnace unit and to act as crew. I also went ahead an put together a couple unit filler bases to break the unit up a bit and look a little more interesting. I definitely have enough models, so it's not to cheat the expensive horde! Heh. Here is a look at all the newly assembled stuff I spent tonight working on. Also, I've organized my bits! Mostly 40K bits, but also now I am getting use out of my Skaven bits (a couple on the Plagueclaw). It is also a big help for sorting my Dungeons and Dragons miniature collection.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Tournament Report

 Our Game 2 deployment...

Well I'm home from the 2v2 Tournament at Shenanigans Hobby Shop, and my team came away with 1st place. My partner decided the last minute to bring his Dark Eldar, and our combined ranged superiority proved too much for our opponents. My list was a Rune Priest, 5 Wolf Guard (2 power fists, combi melta, cyclone missile termy), 5 Wolf Scouts, 2 Grey Hunter squads, and 3 Squads of missile launcher Long Fangs. My partner brought 2 Homunculus, 2 Squads of Wyches in Raiders, 5 Warrior Squads in Raiders, and 2 Ravagers. Lots of Lances.

In game 1 we faced off against Space Wolves and Blood Angels. The Wolves had 2 Rune Priests, 2 Grey Hunter squads, 2 Long Fang squads, and a Land Speeder. The Blood Angels has Mephiston, 2 Assault Squads with Priests, and a Storm Raven. We opened up the first turn and took out an entire Assault Squad and the Storm Raven in the first round of shooting. The Wolf Scouts came on turn 2 and took out a squyad of Long Fangs and we wrapped it up from there. We win 20-0 with 2315 points.

Game 2 we faced Blood Angels again and Sisters of Battle. The Sisters had 2 Exorcists, an Immolater with the HQ unit inside, and 2 Rhinos with squads. The Blood Angels had a Librarian and retinue unit in a Rhino, a Baal, a Vindicator, an Assault squad, and an Assault squad with a Priest. Our turn 1 shooting was less effective, but our numbers overwhelmed again even in the Kill Point scenario where I though we would be at a disadvantage. We win the game 16-0 with 2500 points.

Game 3 on table 1 against a double Eldar list, played by our new friends from Toledo. Their list was exceptional and they played it very well, if not a little too cautiously. In the end it could have been what won us the game, because I was aggressive with my Grey Hunters and I captured the objective on turn 5, with a lucky roll of a 1 for the game to end and give us the tournament win. The Eldar combined lists consisted of Eldrad, Maugan Ra, a large unit of Wraithguard with a warlock, a squad of 3 War Walkers with double scatter lasers, 5 Wraith Lords, 2 Dire Avenger squads, a big unit of Warp Spiders, and 2 units of 3 Jetbikes. The timely end of the game gave us a 16-0 win and no points calculated, as we were the only team to win out and with just about full battle points.

Thanks to Shenanigans for hosting, and to Eternalchaos99 (Brandon) for running the tournament. I haven't played much 40k lately and I have never played a team event, so it was an interesting experience. I also got to play 6 people I have never played 40k against before, and that is always a good thing. And thanks to my teammate Mike for sending me a text on Tuesday to ask me to be on his team. Not bad for 4 days notice!