Monday, March 29, 2010

Back from Adepticon: Part 1

I had intended to post something about me prepping for Adepticon before I left for it, but time was much more in demand than I had previously anticipated.  Suffice it to say that I went to Adepticon in Chicago (after a 15-hour drive), and now I'm back, somewhat exhausted, from it all.  It was a pretty intense trip.

Adepticon was huge.  I had imagined it to be pretty big, and it in no way disappointed as far as attendance goes.  Lots of people in every event- they even had to divide the 40k 'singles' tournament into two tournaments of 120 people each.  The team tourney had 109 teams, which means 436 players in the same tournament.  Even the combat patrol was maxed with 60 people.  Craziness!

So, I guess I'll take the plunge and start with battle reports, and finish later (in Part 2) with my overall thoughts of the con.  The battle reports aren't going to be that long this time, since after 10 games so many things kind of blurred together.  Sorry if you expected more, I'm just tired, lol.  I might end up writing a longer report of the various tournaments a little later.  Suppose we'll see...

A Note:  There are like 10 mini-reports here, so it might be kinda long.

Friday- Combat Patrol

I started the weekend playing in the combat patrol tournament with 60 people, instead of trying my hand in the gladiator.  It's not that I love combat patrol that much more than Gladiator (I don't really like either of them, to be honest), I just wanted to have some time in the day to walk around and look at the cool stuff in the various rooms, and see some ridiculousness in the Gladiator.  The combat patrol was 4 hours total, the gladiator is like 12+ hours.  No brainer in my opinion.

My army list was roughly: 

Veterans w/ 3 melta, demo charge, shotguns, chimera
Platoon Command squad w/ 4 flamers, chimera
Guard Squad w/ grenade launcher
Guard Squad w/ grenade launcher

Nothing too competitive.  I literally spent 5 minutes making it before I printed it out.

Game 1- vs. Steve's Dark Angels

Steve brought a devestator squad w/ heavy bolters, some scouts, a razorback, 5 tac marines and... I think thats it.  The objective was kill points. 

It was a fun game, though I felt a little sad because his only tank killing ability was with his razorback's TWLC.  He started off well shooting one of my infantry squads off the board turn 1, but I was able to rush my chimeras up quickly and throw a demo charge into the devestators, killing them all in one shot.  I also flamered the 5 marines, and killed 4, before he wiped the junior officer squad with his lone marine in a ridiculously effective charge.  A chimera was able to bring down the scouts with its heavy flamer, and the vets also killed the razorback.  I ended up getting almost all the points, though not ALL of them.  Cool guy, very enjoyable game.

Game 2- vs. Fast Eldar

I regrettably don't remember this opponenet's name (I'm terrible at them), but here's his list: 

9 Eldar Jetbikes w/ Warlock on bike

The mission was objectives and kill your opponenets' most expensive unit.  Suffice it to say that I failed at killing his bikes, but I DID kill his vipers.  In the end, it was just a big dance we went through with very few casualties, and I was able to hold enough objectives for the win, though I like I said, I failed at killing his bikes.  Not full points in a tournament this size means you're not in the running anymore for best overall, but I figured I'd try hard in the next mission.  My opponent was a cool guy, and I wish I had gotten his list from him so I could remember his name, lol.

Game 3- vs. Chris' Black Templars

He had one huge squad with a chaplain, a fist, a few neophytes, some cenobye servitors, and... I'm not exactly sure what all.  20 total models I think.  He lined his guys up in the middle and just walked up to me and in one super-effective multi-charge, essentially destroyed me.  The way he charged me looks like it was alright from a rules standpoint, it really seemed jenky at the time though.  Chris was a nice guy, and made sure I didn't have problems, though it did sort of make me grumpy that I didn't really understand exactly what his army could do.  I didn't play it right, and it was my fault, but it still kinda stung.  I don't think I've had that bad of an ass-kicking in 40k for a long, long time.  Cool army though, interesting to think that Templars are actually good at 400 points.

I'm not sure what my overall score was (I assume middle of the pack somewhere), but my last opponent ended up with best sportsmanship.  It was a fun event, though I don't think I'll play it again unless they increase prize support more.  3 or 4 prizes for a 60 person event seems pretty darn small.  More on that in part 2.

Saturday- Team Tournament

Our team was called 'Nine Wounds' and our theme was from the Gaunt's Ghosts books by Dan Abnett.  We all had a traitor guard army that the Ghosts had annihilated in various books.  Maybe not the best premise going into an Imperial Guard-heavy tournament, but we had cool display boards and stuff.  I was happy with our overall theme, though we didn't have 'uniforms' like every other team seemed to have.  Why couldn't we just wear normal clothes?  heh, 'team spirit' is a big deal, apparently.

My list was an expansion of my earlier one:

Veterans in a Chimera
Company Command Squad w/ 4 meltas and astropath, bodyguards, in a Chimera
Flamer Squad
Infantry Squad
Infantry Squad
x2 Hydras

Game 1- vs. BOLS- Orange

Our opponents were one of the Bell of Lost Souls teams.  They had a pre-heresy theme with the 4 various Chaos Gods (using Chaos Marines) and we drew Slannesh/Nurgle, (Big Red and Steve).  The objective was to get 'vital supplies' to the other end of the board, with a single squad from each 'coalition member' carrying the supplies.  There was also a 'hold the center of the table objective'.

My friend CJ and I failed pretty hard the first few turns, killing only one obliterator and one rhino with lots and lots of shooting.  They killed lots of our stuff in return, and got ready to wreck our faces.  We were able to hold on for a long time though, and eventually killed their nurgle demon prince (with flamers!), a bike squad, 3 terminators, 4 rhinos, a noise and plague marine squad (both carrying the supplies), slannesh chaos lord, and a couple more oblits (in exchange for most of our armies). 

I was ALMOST! able to sneak my 'vital supplies' squad into their backfield, but one (very, very invincible) obliterator was able to get a 6 on both terrain and charging tests on the last turn, and wiped the squad.  In the end we drew on all three objectives.  Our teammates had a similar result, and we got paired with another army with the same theme as ours!

Game 2-  vs. Traitor Guard!

 These guys were a blast to play with, who didn't even really want to see our army lists when we offered them to them.  They had a completely gunline style army with a ton of foot-sloggers everywhere, as well as 2 leman russes.  The game went in our favor quickly, with my teammate Richard's 2 demolisher shots CRUSHING a squad of 5 Ogryn on turn 1, and soon after that our outflanking flamers, vendettas, and penal legion we able to bring on the hurt to their various squads.  My command squad was able to kill both their leman russes turn 2, and it was essentially game over after turn 3.  Actually, I don't think we played past turn 3, but we ended up with 27/30 possible battle points.  Our teammates had maxed their game as well.  Our opponents rocked, they were very cool, and took their loss with good grace.

Game 3- vs. IG and Templars!

Me and Richard (we had 2 Richards on our team) were pretty grossly outmatched here.  The guard army looked very very similar to my own in terms of effectiveness (2 melta squads, 2 hydras, 1 vendetta, 3 or 4 chimeras) and the templars had 3 squad w/ the Emperor's Champion, a Marshall w/ lightning claws, and a techmarine accompanied by 3 squads of 8 templars each.  The crappy part:  Richard had a close-combat themed army that really had no business messing with the templars.

They basically tabled Richard pretty quick, and I was ALMOST able to take/contest enough objectives for it to be a draw, but we basically got tabled.  They played it well, though one jenky thing that we allowed (since we knew we were going to lose at that point) was his techmarine declaring a charge on one of my models, and placing himself (he was alone) in base contact with that model AND the vendetta that was right next to it.  I decided not to make a huge deal out of it, but is that even mathematically possible?  They seemed to be FOR SURE that it was allowed.  I thought you had to move a model in the shortest possible route, wouldn't it be even micro-meters short?  I don't know, figured I'd ask.  The combat resulted in him killing the squad AND the vendetta (who had moved 12").  Blah!

Other than that, they were fun oppponents, though the templar guy got real sad when I was finally able to kill his Marshall after he had made like 7 insta-death invulnerable saves on him, and like 4 others on the EC and techmarine.  Heh, not the best dice results for us this game, though I think even if it had been average we still would have lost.  They played it well, and we had no real synergy in our armies to speak of that game. 

Game 4- vs. Demon Hunters and Space Marines

They had an army that consisted of a Land Raider, some Grey Knights, Grey Knight Termies, an inquisitor lord, a predator, some various marines, 2 las cannon razorbacks and... I think thats it.

We reserved lots fof stuff, and they did too.  The mission was to select one of the other team's members to have 'kill points' and the other team didn't count for kill points.  Whoever had the most kill points got that objective.  We picked the marines, and they placed all of their marines in reserve except for the predator. 

We got off to a good start with the first shots of the turn coming from demollishers killing the land raider.  We were also able to kill the entire inquisitor and retinue except for a single gun drone guy, who died the next turn.  The rest of the game went back and forth, and we were eventually able to grab nearly full points, though it was very close.  Cool guys from (Virginia?), they were a good 'final game' for us to play against, since we were obviously out of the runnings for best overall by then.  Our teammates had a fail in their game, and got zeroed.  So we figured we were pretty darn close to the middle of the pack.

Our final result was 29th overall out of 109 teams, which really isn't bad for our first try there.  We had some enjoyable games for sure, and it was just a good day of wargaming in general.  I'm not sure how close we were to winning 'Best Heretical', but we were a little disappointed, since none of the heretical armies were really SUPER awesome. 

Sunday- 40k Championships

At this point in the weekend, I was pretty tired.  Getting up at 7 for the team tournamnet that lasted until like midnight, and then doing the same for the championships was pretty dragging on me.  I didn't want to play really, and I had a headache/stomachache.  So I ate some advil, pop tarts, mountain dew, and tums.  Wow, tournaments are bad for my health, ha.  I got some energy, and was starting to feel happy when:

Game 1- vs. Rob's IG

When I got to the table, me and Rob shook hands and I went to get my army.  We started discussing rules, and he was pretty direct about stuff, which was fine.  When we rolled off and starting deploying things, he asked me which vendetta I was using for my veterans, and I explained to him (a little long-windedly, apparently) that I hadn't really assigned each vendetta to each specific squad outflanking, and since they were all the same, I would just tell him which one they were in before I rolled to see if they came in.  His response:  "The clock's ticking."

This sort of set the mood for the game.  I like to play fast, and I did.  I felt like we resolved rules issues easily enough, and though he was never really cheerful, the game progressed quickly.  He rolled poorly from the start and only continued in it, and the mission was kill points (secondary was kill all your opponent's troops) and I was able to get both objectives without losing a single kill point.  I ended up with 44/45 total points.  I suppose what I didn't understand was why he docked me 3 sportsmanship (out of 12).  I'll be the first to admit that I'm not the most engaging person to strangers, but I try to be courteous throughout the game.  I really didn't see a reason for him to dock me, but dock me he did.  Ah well, guess sometimes ya gotta just take it or something.

As for the battle, it was fairly straightforward IG battle:  trading shots until one team gets the advantage.  Not really much of a report for it, since he rolled poorly enough that even though I made my share of mistakes, I was still able to win handily.

Game 2- vs. Brad Chester's Eldar

Well, I got paired with what I thought would be a 'perfect' game for me.  He had lots of wraithguard (10), Eldrad, Maugan Ra, 2 Dire Avenger Squads footslogging, 4 jetbikes w/ warlock, some warwalkers outflanking, some warpspiders, and 2 wraithlords with 2 S6 weapons each.  No transports, no weapons higher than S6 (I guess there's a spear at S9).  Easy button, right?  Not so much.

I made him deply frist, and he put Eldrad and the wraithlord as far forward on my left side as he could in DOW.  Instead of relying on superior range and putting my guys one the right corner, I instead walked my guys onto the table as close to his huge squad as possible, wanting to get the secondary as quickly as I could (kill both of their HQs).  Huge huge mistake on my part, and I paid for it with most of my army getting its ass handed to it, hard.  I had one turn of complete fail shooting (lots and lots of 1's) and then his wraithguard w/ Maugan Ra and Eldrad schooled me.  I really think that if I had deployed on the opposite side of the table from where he was and just shot him for round after round while taking very little return fire, I would have gotten almost full points.

I'm not saying this to bash him on his generalship:  he DID after all wreck my face.  He played his army the way he should have, and deserved to smush me like that.  In the end, I was able to draw on the primary, but he won the secondary and tertiary.  I got 12/45 points on this one.  Ouch!

Game 3-  vs. Tyranids!

Well, seeing as I had just been knocked out of the tournament, I went and got a beer and decided to just relax some.  The weekend was essentially over (except for the 15 hour drive back) and there was nothing I could really win at this point.  I got to play a 'nid player for my second game vs. the new codex ever!  It was somewhat exciting, should be fun!

He had a Mawloc, Tervigon, Deathleaper, 3 Zoanthropes, 3 Hive Guard, 3x23 Guants, 2x11 Genestealers w/ Broodlord.

I deployed everything, and tried to sieze but failed.  Danigt!  His shooting failed somehow though, and I was able to kill all 3 Zoanthropes, the tervigon, and a TON of gaunts, making one of the squads flee off the table.  The Mawloc showed up, stunned some stuff, the deathleaper shot and didn't do much, and I killed both them and more gaunts, and the hive guard.  Turn 3 he had been tabled, somehow.  I wasn't really trying to be super aggressive or crazy, it just turned out that killing his 2 synapse units was catastrophic for him.  He was a really nice guy, and ended up giving me one of his dice. 

I ended up with getting 12th place overall, which wasn't too bad.  I was hoping for something a little closer (the goal was 10th or better), but with a loss as bad as I had had against the eldar guy (who ended up with 9th overall), I guess I can't complain.  12th in a 120 person tournament is in the top 10%, and I'm happy enough to be there after 3 games, one of which was a loss.  I should note I got perfect sportsmanship on the other 2 games.  Sad to me that I failed to help Rob enjoy the game.

I had a good enough time at the events- they were all well-run and prompt, I just didn't really like the format of having 120 people play 3 games and only have like 4 prizes for 120 people.  The team tournament was the exact same- only a few awards were given out.  No 'second overall' awards or anything like that.  Anyways, I'll call it quits for a little.  TTFN!

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