Monday, 6 June 2011

The View From The Bottom Tables (Deja Vu)

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!


  1. Sounds like a plan dude.

    If you feel you improved in any way from the experience then thats a bonus.

    If your getting used to the special rules - grab a couple of your other codex's - make up typical units and just run mini skirmishes on your desk - I find it just helps me remember rules for units that I am unfamiliar with. Paired with your notes you'll be golden. I know the feeling - when I was running my blood angels I near enough had to write "REMEMBER RED THIRST" on my hand before the game - out of about 40 or 50 games with them I think I remembered to do it less than 50% of the time (I also never actually roll a 1 for RT either ...)

    As the Squats as IG - all I say is DAMN YOU. Thats my idea ... ;D I really want to do it - but I don't think I can bring myself to do a IG army lol Would love to see how you do the models as I have a few idea's myself - I've looked at a bit of the Dwarf fantasy range and there are some good models - I have some old RT ones in my bits box - and eBay was going to be the rest lol.

  2. Kenneth morley6 June 2011 at 22:32

    Sorry to hear about the three losses I've been there before and it does get a little demoralising. 
    I agree though that crib notes would be handy for remembering special rules, although gaming experience is also handy :oP

  3. Good to see you there, if it wasn't for my final game against Scott (friend of From the Fang), I too would have been bottom. But I wouldn't let it get to you, play how you want to play to enjoy, don't jump on the competitive BoLS lists bandwagon just yet. Hope to see you soon 

  4. I'm going to tell you what I told Dave. Firstly pick a list. It doesn't matter whether it is filled with "competitive" choices or just stuff you like. However, make sure that you have a plan for each unit (look at Darren - he has some units I'm his list that "the internet" will tell you are rubbish but he knows exactly what they're all going to do)

    Play with that list for 10 games. Try and play against as many different types of army as possible - horde, gunline, mech etc. After each game, make a note of what went well and what didn't.

    Then make some tweaks based on those 10 games. Try and keep the core of the list the same though.

    I'm the same as you in that I like to run different lists all the time but it's not helpful in learning the strengths and weaknesses of your army...

  5. Hmmm those words of wis

  6. You can probably do better with what you have just by thinking more about the mission. I'm the Ork player from game one, and I know you used your lash rules to good effect. About the only thing I could fault about your game was that while we had a very close battle for your objective that was really on a knife edge, at my objective... nothing happened. With your list I'd have been tempted to stick some beserkers in the Land Raider with Kharn to fight in midfield, have a unit of beserkers in a rhino on your objective, and use the empty rhino to just generally get in my way and slow my advance. The termies I'd have deep striked near my objective to kill my scoring unit. Don't worry about if the lootas take you out in retaliation, kill that scoring unit and who cares what else happens.

    With that kind of game you generally need some dynamic entry in the list to get better than a draw. If you had something in reserve that could potentially threaten my objective, I wouldn't have been able to go hell for leather at yours - I'd have had to have held something back myself, just in case.


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