On Sunday, Team Claws & Fists visited Maelstrom Games for not only the inagural, but also the first, BloG Wars tournament. And a very good day we had too! The tournament itself ran faultlessly, so well done to Alex of 'From the Fang' to arranging an entertaining day. The best part of the day was chatting to so many like-minded guys with a real love of the hobby.
The worst part of the day was my performance in the three games! I variously played Orks (hordes in Battlewagons), Imperial Guard (mortar-toting hordes on foot with minimal tank support) and Grey Knights (psyker heaven/hell). The three games (all of which I lost) highlighted a problem endemic to all my recent lists - that is, lack of infantry models on the table. Over the last few months I've played with a few different armies, specifically Eldar, CSMs and counts-as Blood Angels, and all those lists have had a model count of less than thirty, including transports and tanks. Having played two tournaments in the last week, plus practise games, it has led me to some conclusions:
1. I need to start taking the game seriously. It's not that I don't consciously play to win, it's more that I always treat all games as friendlies, and help my opponents with ideas and suggestions (eg. '...why don't you shoot my transport with that spare gun? It might work! Oh. It did...").
2. I need to use my own special rules. I seem to have a bit of a reluctance to use psychic powers and special rules, even though everyone else uses them and they are an accepted part of the game nowadays.
3. I need to write competitive and cohesive lists instead of using whatever I have available at the time.
4. I need to 'splash the cash' as my old woodwork teacher used to say. Rather than continuing to simply use the models that I have in my collection (bought and painted 'cos I like them') I really need to invest in the units that will make for a competitive list, even though I don't necessarily love that particular model or set of special rules.
So my plan is now to put the Chaos Space Marines to one side for a while, and concentrate on finishing two works-in-progress. The first project will be to field 1,750pts of Tyranids. I started working on the army last year for our club's 500pt challenge, but then other things became a priority and I never completed them. So I will resurrect Hive-Fleet Nemesis, consisting of Genestealer broods and Tervigons with Hive Guard for firepower.
My second project is to finish off my Squats-as-IG. They are nearly done - all the models are assembled and undercoated, most of the infantry have been finished and only the tanks need to be painted. This will take a lower priority than the Tyranids, however, as I won't be able to use this army at Warhammer World or any GW store, as it contains a number of non-GW resin models which are not acceptable there (and fair enough, it's their house and they make the rules!).
As each new army nears completion, I will write myself a set of play-notes to help me utilise the special rules and powers that that codex allows. Then it'll be time to practise, and hopefully some wins may eventually come my way!