Friday, 2 September 2016

MAD Wargaming 30k Tale of Gamers - first games played


Greetings all, I'm glad to announce that my gaming club's first ever 30k tale of gamers is underway! Last night 6 of us came together to initiate hostilities, several of use embarking on only our first or second games of 30k.

Here's a brief rundown of the results - we're using the planetary empires tiles to depict how the tale is unfolding, but in a departure to normal methods, we're not imposing any particular deadlines or rewards on the participants over painting models, and last night included a fair few proxies too (so no photos of the actual games).

My Emperor's Children went up against Howard's Ultramarines first of all, my list consisting of Eidolon, some palatine blades, a 6-man tactical support squad (in a rhino) and two kakophoni squads (one in a rhino as a last minute addition when I realised the recent books have reduced the price of some of my other units). My opponent had warlord on his own, two tactical squads in rhinos, a storm squad with artificer armour, a predator and a twin lascannon contemptor.

The game started relatively well, as the ultramarine warlord's bombardment failed to destroy anything, the contemptor and predator only managed two hull points on the rhino and everything else bounced off. In return, my kakophoni squads managed to avoid boiling themselves alive, killing two of the storm squad (though they passed their leadership test) but despite a bucketful of wounds (I want to say seven?) on the enemy warlord his 2+ armour kept him safe.

That was when things went downhill. I foolishly split Eidolon off from the Palatine blades in an effort to provide multiple threats to the tactical and storm squads that were bearing down on me, but neglected to check lines of sight, leaving him open to the contemptor, who duly obliged by pointing two lascannons at him and pulling the trigger. I saved one of them... As my opponent later testified, this is also the point where my dice rolling deserted me, and I managed to fail the vast majority of 3+ saves I was called on to make. With Eidolon gone, the storm squad were free to charge the kakophoni, and made short work of them, though in return the palatine blades made the elite of the ultramarines pay for their victory in blood. It was all over bar the shouting really by now though, and the predator and contemptor took out the second kakophoni squad while the tactical marines finished off the palatine blades in a hail of bolt rounds.

Not the most auspicious start for the 3rd legion and their pretentions to 'perfection in the art of war'. I can't deny that even though my dice weren't rolling well for most of the game (turn 1 excepted), the biggest reason for the loss however was my own. My selected army has limited access to anti tank weaponry, with Eidolon himself being the most reliable solution. Splitting him off from the Palatine Blades was intended to allow me to not only distract them with a nasty combat threat and therefore discourage them from advancing on the kakophoni (not a single 6 from 10 attempts on overwatch from them btw) but also divide my anti tank weapons to allow me to deal with two rhinos and the predator. Rushing his placement though meant my opponent had a clear line of sight and though the dice owed me by that point inevitably I only passed a single invulnerable save. From that point I must admit I was struggling, the number of guns pointing my way meant that I was bound to fail saves (though 3 out of 4 including a 2+ hurt me rather more than the shooting that forced them should have). Quite honestly destroying the Storm Squad was more petulance than tactically sound as by that point I'd resigned myself to getting wiped off the board.

Things to learn from then!

  1. Eidolon and the Palatine Blades are a combat unit, so they should waste as little time as possible getting there, even if that means being charged rather than doing the charging (I think, though clearly the latter is preferable).
  2. Leaving your warlord without the fallback of a 2+ look out sir roll is a very, very foolish thing to do, especially if there's guns that can ignore his 2+ armour save.
  3. Focus fire is important. The Kakophoni have a good range, and pointing both units at a single enemy target is always going to be more successful than splitting their fire and achieving nothing.
So, what happened in the other two games? Well Dave P's Sons of Horus got ambushed by Jon's Raven Guard, and though they put up some stern resistance, they succumbed in the end, whilst Ryan's Alpha Legion took the fight to Tom's Mechanicum, weathering a brutal storm of fire from his Krios tanks to pull out a win for the traitor legions.

Next time I'll get a picture of the map for you all so you can see what's actually happening, whilst Martin is aiming his Death Guard at the Salamanders controlled by Mj to try and even the win count up.

I'll leave you then with a little snapshot of the first little parts of the paint job I'm aiming for with the Emperor's Children.

As you can see, I'm steering clear of the 'typical' brighter purples of the Emperor's Children and going for a more sombre, threatening tone. Hopefully next hobby update will have some more progress to showcase for you in this regard!

Till next time,
TBE