Monday, 8 June 2015

Blog Wars 9 - the Dust has settled

Well, I attended my first tournament on Saturday, BlogWars9 run by Alex over at From the Fang, and a fantastically enjoyable day it was too - thanks to Alex for organising!

Now those loyal readers may recall that back in January I made a load of hobby resolutions for the coming year, and one of those was to place in the top half of the competitors at blogwars. Tick! I achieved that resolution this weekend, coming 22nd out of 48 players (with a comfortable margin of 5/99pts ahead of 25th place). I also managed to place 4th in the voting for best painted army, which I am taking as a very great compliment, since a lot of the armies there were seriously stunning - congrats to Dave Weston for his Tyranid army that won the prize, they're absolutely incredible and I can't wait to see what he's working on next!

Game 1
I played an army form the new Eldar codex (never faced new codex Eldar before), which included Karandras and some striking scorpions, warp spiders, two wave serpents with fire dragons and dire avengers, a wraithknight, hemlock, a couple of ranger units and a fire prism. The game awards unit cost points for destroyed units (and half points for half units) plus 100pts for killing the enemy special character, but I'm afraid to say it was a sound thrashing. I went into the game reasonably positive, but when my lances failed to scratch the wraithknight on turn 1 (there was a prize available for the first player to kill a superheavy/gargantuan) the writing was on the wall. Added to that, my Talos died to bladestorm overwatch, Karandras and his scorpions battered everything they faced and the wave serpents ruined my skimmers. Later turns saw me come back into it a bit when my razorwing arrived and wiped out a dire avenger squad but that was token resistance really, as you can see from the first game results above I lost by a mighty 1670-801.

Game 2
Another Eldar army, aargh! Very different this one, a farseer, three jetbike units with scatter lasers (urgh), squadron of falcons, two units of dark reapers, one of warp spiders, one swooping hawks, one fire dragons and maugan ra. Game was based around three objectives with scaling victory points depending on how far they are from your deployment zone (5pts within, 10pts middle and 15 in enemy dz). This one went right to the wire, the early turns went quite well as i silenced the falcons and stripped down most of the dark reapers (thank you razorwing once more) and some bikes, including farseer. Maugan Ra fell to a kamikaze drop by my Archon and heat lance scourges. Later turns things began to fall apart however, my deep striking warriors got hampered/killed meaning I couldn't claim my enemy's objective marker and vehicles started to drop. On the last turn, my opponent fired everything he had at Urien Rakarth (who'd gained back a wound thanks to It Will Not Die) taking out his grotesque bodyguard and bring the main man down to a single wound, but they failed their charge (twice) to push him off the objective (the mission grants him ObSec) thanks to them having to charge through terrain and into the face of a grav wave generator. I won 15-5. This was definitely the most tense game I've ever played, as every dice roll centred on Urien was making me twitch by the end.

Game 3
Finally, something I know about - I faced a mech guard list with Pask and two punisher companions, a wyvern, 6 chimeras filled with guardsmen and a pair of vendettas (awesomely modelled as airships! The guardsmen themselves were great too, using the old squad models). We played a modified maelstrom mission over a stunning looking scenery piece, a huge railway bridge spanning the entire 6x4 table. This was possibly the weirdest game of 40k I've played. The dice and objective deck began in my favour, giving me choice of sides (so I obviously chose the one with 3 objectives in easy reach!) and plenty of early achievable objectives (after 2 turns I was 9-1 ahead). Things got less successful from there as my haywire scourges failed to hit much, my archon was swamped by guardsmen after he lost his shadowfield save, and those tanks and flyers started to cause casualties to mount. The biggest problem was that all my AI firepower had been stranded on my own table edge by damage results, and all the enemy infantry was over the other side of the table. Probably my favourite game of the day however, a great opponent to play against, really good fun and played firmly within the spirit of the tournament.

Added to all that fun, when the raffle was drawn, I even won a (second) copy of the new knights codex - which I've managed to sell on already at a price that covered the cost of my ticket in the first place.

So to wrap things up then, I had a great fun day's gaming, met some really nice people, many of whom I've bumped into online in various places, and I'd thoroughly recommend it to anyone in the future. I'm yet to completely rule out attending the next one due to new arrival (I had ruled it out, though last night my wife did open the door to it just a little bit) but will definitely be in attendance at BW11!

Thanks once again to Alex (and to Mj for driving), and just a quick note to say that one of the guys from my club who attended (Mj) has also now started a blog (Vulkan's Fireborn) so keep an eye out for that in the future!

Painting progress will be updated in a couple of days so as to let this post get its time in the limelight (and obviously because having been away at the weekend, I've barely done any).