Monday, 13 January 2020

Seven days of Hobby - Week 2

After a long (very long) break, I’m making a real effort to get back into blogging, I really have missed sharing the interaction with you guys and the opportunity to share my views to a wide audience.

Things have changed rather a lot since my last consistent posting, not least of which a new space marine codex has been released, so let’s take a quick look at where I am in the hobby now shall we?


When I last posted regularly I was working on three projects, the Swords of Dawn Primaris Marines, Craftworld Mael Dannan, and Hive Fleet Echidna.

Well, things have changed a little since then, as I’ve sold the Eldar stuff to a friend. I had a very specific picture in my head of where I wanted that army to go, and even with the release of the new howling banshees, it’s safe to say that I think it’ll be a while before the units I wanted to bulk the collection out with will be re-done.

That leaves two projects on the go. I’m still very committed to building out a Tyranid collection, and even though I’ve only added a unit of three warriors during my hiatus from posting, pretty much everything I have is now painted (except those warriors and old one eye).

The main focus of everything I’ve done since has been on the Swords of Dawn marines. I worked out the other day that I now have just shy of 5000pts in the collection, although there’s still plenty more that I want to add! Given that, that’s where I’m going to focus the rest of this post.


The army is centred around two companies of the Chapter, 3rd (Rapier Company) and 5th (Sabre Company). I have another Captain who is the commander of 4th (Scimitar Company) but only because he came in one of the army boxes I bought in 2018, he’s unlikely to see use anytime soon (until GW starts releasing another type of marines that is! 4th Company may well be designated a Gravis Company if that happens!)

I’ll do a quick run-down of the stuff in the collection then along with a brief suggestion of what I’d like to add - in time I’ll be setting up some new pages on the blog covering the narrative side of things (there you go Marc! I’ve written it down so I need to do it!) but for now this will have to do!


Chapter Master Lox Kaitana - standard Gravis Captain model.

5th Captain Janus Darke - standard Captain model with stalker bolt rifle and power sword.

4th Captain Nero Vanderling - Standard Captain model, part built.

3rd Captain Sorren Valdir - Phobos Captain model, converted head and removed the servo skull.

Chaplain Morren Vespasian - Standard Chaplain model, converted Crozius

Epistolary Hossan Kadjar - Standard Tacticus Armour Librarian

Chief Librarian Garrandol Pallas - Standard Phobos Librarian

Lieutenant Dante Terios - Standard Lt with a Stalker Bolt Rifle.

Lieutenant Kitt Sebring - Standard Lt with power sword

Lieutenant Endo Blaize - Standard Phobos Lt with Occulus Carbine and knife.

In addition to the above, I’d like to add:

-another Phobos Librarian, converted with some of the Eliminators kit to appear as though he’s drawing power from the ground and expending it simultaneously towards the enemy.

-another Phobos Lt, the newer Reiver style kit, although I’d do a head swap I think.


30 Intercessors - 10 Stalker Bolt Rifles and 20 standard Bolt Rifles.

30 Infiltrators - 20 from the Shadowspear kit and 10 from the multipart version, a few bits mixed in to give variety.

I’d also like to add 30 Incursors and another 30 Intercessors, some more stalker bolt rifles and 20 with auto bolt rifles to give me flexibility in troops choices, in particular giving me a close-ranged option.


6 Aggressors - flamestorm gauntlets. Standard easy to build kit.

3 Aggressors - boltstorm gauntlets. Full kit.

Primaris Ancient - standard starter set kit.

Primaris Apothecary - standard kit.

Redemptor Dreadnought - Full kit, both gatlings, rocket pod and storm bolters, plasma option switchable.

Redemptor Dreadnought - EtB kit, gatling, heavy flamer, fragstorms.

10 Reivers - full kit, grav chutes and cut down grapnels included to allow those options in game.

I’d like to add another 3 boltstorm aggressors, and a third full-kit dreadnought, as well as another 10-15 Reivers with a mix of weapons.

I’d also like to add a pair of tactical warsuits and magnetise the weapon options, as I do quite like the autocannon variant for long range firepower and counter-assault.


6 Inceptors - full kit variant with plasma exterminators

3 Inceptors - start kit variant with assault bolters

3 Suppressors - Shadowspear kit with accelerator autocannons

Given these are the only two primaris FA choices, I’m expecting more releases for them this year. I’d like to add another 3 Assault bolter Inceptors and some more suppressors, particularly if they get a weapon variant.


3 Eliminators - shadowspear kit, bolt sniper rifles

3 Eliminators (coming soon) - full kit, will be las-fusils

Repulsor executioner (coming soon) - full kit, will be the laser destroyer

10 Hellblasters - mix of starter kit and full kit

I’d like to add a couple more eliminator squads, one of each type for variety or focusing on a particular style.


Repulsor - full kit, magnetised (main options)

Impulsor - full kit, top option magnetised.

Certainly looking for another Impulsor, and eagerly awaiting what other transport options might be forthcoming, perhaps one with a higher transport capacity but not as many guns as the repulsor?

Yes, I have to admit, I’m a thorough marine fanboy through and through, and I’ll never stop collecting them, meaning any other armies I have will have to take a back seat to that as my priority, but I’m fully aware of that as a situation and it won’t stop me picking up other armies for variety as I go.

So, that’s the collection itself, how about the narrative behind the army, what’s that about? As I said earlier, this will be a quite brief overview that will be expanded in more detail in time on specific pages on the blog.

First up, it’s now more significant than ever as to where your collection hails from in game terms.

For the Swords of Dawn, I’ve always seen them as being a Raven Guard successor (yes, I’ve run them as that ever since release day for 8th edition) as Corax is one of my two very favourite Primarchs (Sanguinius being the other so there was no choice once I went with the main marine codex).

That being said, the new Chapter Traits gave me the scope to personalise my force a little more than previously, so I had a good deep dive into the tactics section of the codex to try and figure out which direction I went in.

Given the tie-in to Raven Guard, I decided from the outset that I would use the available half of their Chapter Tactics regardless, so Stealthy was in (and again, I’ve never deviated from this one, even if it’s not always the most relevant for the type of force I’m playing).

As for the second part, I wanted somehow to reflect the idea that the Swords of Dawn venerate close combat ability as well as stealth, so I was immediately drawn to the Duellists tactic. Something about it still wasn’t quite right though, it didn’t sit well, and so instead I looked elsewhere. My eyes settled on the Hungry for Battle tactic, which allows me to add 1 to advance and charge rolls. Narratively speaking, I see this as combining really well with both the fluff in my head and tabletop effectiveness (I do play a lot so this does matter though it will always be secondary to the narrative). Essentially therefore, I have a chapter who uses their skills in stealth and covert warfare to infiltrate a battlefield before launching a devastating close assault that overwhelms their foes before they are aware of what’s happening. It also helps to mitigate my terrible charge rolls! In game terms, the Hungry for Battle tactic is less useful - the Swords of Dawn are a Primaris-only chapter and there is a distinct lack of serious combat units in the ranks of the Primaris at present. What that actually means therefore is that in more ‘competitive’ environments, I tend to run Inheritors of the Primarch as my Chapter Tactic, since the modifier to hit is pretty powerful in a lot of situations.

I’ve got a knockout tournament coming up in my club over the next month or two, so I’ve been working hard to get a list written to give me the best chance of getting through to the main final (first round losers go through to play for a ‘B’ final).

With that in mind, my next post will be a breakdown of what I’ve come up with after a few refinements, a test game against the Death Guard, and then more refinements (aka ripping up and starting again!).

Till then, may all your dice roll sixes


  1. Thats a lot of reinforcements! How many scouts (first born marines) do you have? These are great area denial and cheap squads to fill out army lists. And glad you've looked at Stalker Bolt Rifles, they seem the nuts.

  2. Hey Siph! Yeah I could probably remortgage my house and not afford all the stuff I want!

    I’ve not got any scouts at the moment, I’m waiting to see what GW do about resolving that part of the Primaris process, from my reading of the codex whilst Primaris scouts kind of exist they’ve been swallowed up by the vanguard elements of the chapter and don’t seem to have a particular place anymore. I might have missed it but there isn’t a great breakdown on typical chapter structure anymore following the Primaris introduction and the changes to the codex, might need to investigate my RG supplement fluff more to see what’s in there.

    Until then however I’m committed to not using/buying more scouts as the SoD are pure Primaris.

  3. Nice to see how your Primaris force is coming along! I've been slowly working on my own Dark Angels Primaris force. Sad to say that the new rules previews do not have me that excited.

    1. I started work on a progress spreadsheet for them last night. Currently it has me terrified at how much needs to be done and how few models are completely finished! Hopefully I'll get a screenshot of it for next week's post.

      I must admit I don't know very much about the Dark Angels, I went the other way with Blood Angels with that ancient Angels of Death codex and haven't really paid too much attention since. It's a shame they didn't come up with something a bit more universal for the army though, seems like the basic tactics really shaft you if you take anything other than Green Wing.

    2. Yeah, the Chapter Tactic is pretty useless for Deathwing or Ravenwing. Plus, the bonus range on the Doctrine is pretty useless for much of my army. I would much rather be in the Tactical Doctrine for the extra -1AP on most units, rather than an extra 6" on the guns.