Monday, 26 July 2010

Guilty Pleasures

Coming back home from a day out in Birmingham, the Top Gun soundtrack shuffled to the top of my iPod playlist. Now; I know it’s VERY “80’s” and even though singing along to the songs (yes, I know all the words) makes me cringe because of how cheesy the lyrics are, but there’s just something about hearing those songs which brings back the over-excited 12 year old in me running, round the room “at Mach 2 with my hair on fire”! At that age I was oblivious to the homo-erotic subtext and all I cared about was how cool everyone was and the fantastically filmed dog-fights. Just as an aside if they were to make Top Gun in the 00’s how much of that film would be CGI and how much would it take away from the thrill of the movie … But I digress, and I am going to link this back to 40k in a minute, it’s tenuous but I really wanted to confess to a limited internet audience that I love Top Gun and most of the Soundtrack (Lead me On? Really?).

Anyway, guilty pleasures. I also love the Space Marine Codex. Sure, Blood Angels have done it faster and Space Wolves have just plain done it better for less, but what still makes the Space Marine Codex first, in my mind, over both of those ‘dexes is the Special Characters. Depending on who I pick I get a completely different flavour to my list-build and subsequent play-style, and these are game changing differences. Running a list with Khan in it I can’t resist taking a Raider-load of Combat Blade equipped Scouts with him to make the most of Furious Charge and Hit and Run, but I could also take Assault Termies to allow them to Outflank in their Land Raider, very nasty and not something you can do with anyone else. Pedro is great too because you can get away with loading up on Elite Sternguard units that are actually good at killing stuff and not have to worry too much about taking the bare minimum of troops, his aura also gives any units in range some much needed close assault punch! The list goes on but each Character allows you to do something unique with you list and this really appeals to me.

The Open War team have, unfortunately, decided to ban special or unique characters from their next tournament. Now I’m not against this, and I think that it will level the playing field in some respects but, for me, this means that I will not be fielding a Vanilla Space Marine army in this tournament. I just cannot write a list that I like without a special character in it, it seems to take away everything that appeals to me in a Space Marine list. I’ve written a few lists to see if I can get to something I like the look of but the HQ section always leaves me feeling cold. Librarians with Null Zone and GoI are no doubt useful, a Captain with a Relic Blade is a cost effective close combat monster and taking Dreads as Heavy Support choices with a Master of the Forge is fun. But none of them pack the same level of unpredictable excitement as stuffing 10 Sternguard and Lysander into a Drop Pod for a 1st turn Alpha Strike of Doom - could be doom for you or your opponent, in a dice game you can never tell!

So to keep things fun for me I think I’m going to go ahead with an Ork list for this Open War, although I’ve got a Blood Angels list on the back burner just in case I can’t tear myself away from the guys in Power Armour!! For your consideration, here’s the list I’m currently contemplating (and painting):

HQ: Warboss Muttmasha
Power Klaw, Cybork Body; Warbike

HQ: Big Mek Shokkolla
Kustom Force Field

Elite: Lootas
6 Lootas

Elite: Lootas
6 Lootas

Troops: Nob Bikers
1 Painboy
1 Nob: Shoota/Skorcha Kombi-weapon
1 Nob: Power Klaw
1 Nob: Big Choppa
1 Nob: Waaagh! Banner, Power Klaw
1 Nob: Bosspole
1 Nob

Troops: Straycatcha's Boyz
19 Boyz: Choppa & Slugga
1 Boyz Nob: Bosspole, Power Klaw

Troops: Chokechain's Boyz
18 Boyz: Choppa & Slugga
1 Boyz Nob: Bosspole, Power Klaw

Troops: Boyz
29 Boyz: Shootas, Big Shoota x3
1 Boyz Nob: Bosspole, Power Klaw

Heavy Support: Battlewagon
Deff Rolla; Red Paint Job; Big Shoota

Heavy Support: Battlewagon
Deff Rolla; Red Paint Job; Big Shoota

Heavy Support: Killer Kans
3 Killer Kans: Grotzooka x3

In lieu of an over-costed Special Character I’m going with an over costed killer unit (Nob Bikers). Potentially a seriously dangerous unit but also a huge point sink that could be vaporised by a suitably placed S8+ template. I think the randomness of this game is what really appeals to me so when that one “super unit” actually does what it’s supposed to rather than flubbing the crucial dice rolls it makes it all worth-while. In a tournament this may mean that I only win (or do well) in one game but I will enjoy that game so much more because my hair-brained scheme paid off, so the other games won’t really matter. To me that’s what makes this game fun.


  1. Ooh, should I start my comment with, "you can be my wingman anytime" or "Khaaaaan!!!!!"

    I worry that the Lootas would get taken out in the first turn and then you'd lose a good chunk of your anti-mech. I'd be tempted to run some Warbuggies (or even your new Deffcoptas) for some anti-tank and also for blocking (let's see how the TH/SS Termies like that!)

  2. Wrath of Khan was neither cheesy or homo-erotic, in fact I still think it stands up well to today's best sci-fi ... what a movie!!

    tbh the Lootas are a distraction I'm hoping people are going to shoot at them because they will not be shooting at he Nob Bikers, the Battle Wagons or the Foot Sloggers behind the Kanz and if they leave the Lootas alone they can soften up some units Turn 1, by turn 2 I hope most of the army will be in Assault. As far as Tank Busting goes, I'm confident the Battle Wagons and Nob Bikers can get the job done against anything but Blood Angels ... damn fast everything!

  3. Ah, come on that bit at the end with Kirk and Spock ;-) I can never decide whether I prefer II or VI to be honest, by far the best Star Trek films.

    Back to the list, I think my target priority would go Lootas - Nob Bikers - Battlewagons - Everything else. If I had the time I'd draw a threat/time graph lol


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