Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Weekend Games

Between Thursday, Friday, and Saturday last weekend, I managed to play 4 games at 2500 points with my Blood Angels.  I've been studying like crazy for finals these last couple days, which is why I haven't really posted much except for the random flamer Tactica, but now that those are over (3 finals on Monday is brutal!) I have time to give recaps on the games I played.  Be forewarned- this is a pretty long post.

Here's what I took, basically:


Sternguard w/ combi-plas in rhino
Death Company in rhino
2 other assault squads in rhino

2x 10 jump marines
3 priests (one Corbulo)
Chaplain for Death Company

2x2 attack bikes
5 Useless Vanguard

The first game was against a Tyranid player, who hadn't played in a couple months.  He had a list I'd never really seen before:

Tyrant w/ 2 Guard, Ancient Adversary, venom cannon, some other random stuff
Prime w/ Bone Swords and Lash Whip

2x Tervigon
2x 20 Gaunts
5 Warriors w/ 1 Venom Cannon and Bone Swords

2x3 Zoanthropes
2 Venomthropes

20 Gargoyles

I think that's about it.  It was an interesting list, and I'm glad I let him go first, because I figured he'd just advance and that would be his turn.  It was kill points, so no objectives to worry about.  Instead he just... castled his guys up and stood there, shooting one thing that was in range, which didn't do much.  His gaunts surrounded his little fortress, and the Venomthropes were in the center, giving off good vibes to the rest of his army.

So, I jumped in, took some dangerous terrain tests, and rocked the gaunts (by now he had spawned 3 more squads, so he had a total of 5), killed a few spores that the 'thropes normally came down in, and took potshots at his warriors.  His return attack was somewhat crazy, with his remaining gaunts all shooting like 60 shots from 20 guys, then charging.  My lone assault squad who had murdered 3 full squads the turn before, lost all but the Chaplain, Priest, and 2 guys, by the end of the asssault afterwards.  FNP for the win!

In the end, we called it before the end of turn 4, since I was going to table him otherwise.  It was an interesting army, and in an army like that, the venomthropes were pretty awesome.  They probably ended up killing more of my guys than the rest of his army, through terrain checks, and giving everyone defensive grendes.  That being said, I think he had too little long-range shooting, and I wonder what he would have done if it had been objectives.  Still, I like to play against things I haven't ever seen before :)

What I learned:

Hoods vs. Zoanthropes are really awesome.  He has to roll to cast, roll to not get blocked by my hood, roll to hit, roll to pen, then I roll my smoke.  Too many rolls, and his 'thropes didn't do hardly anything this whole game. 

The next game was against Zac, who has decided to run Grey Knight Termies in Storm Ravens.  Here's the list, as I remember it:

Grey Knight Grand Master w/ Termie Retinue
Honor Guard w/ 4x Melta

10-man assault squad w/ 2 melta, PF
10-man assault squad w/ 2 melta, PF

5-man assault squad w/ melta, infernus, TL Flamer Razor
5-man assault squad w/ melta, infernus, TL Flamer Razor
5-man assault squad w/ melta, infernus, TL Flamer Razor
Sanguinary Priests somewhere, I think
Corbulo w/ Grey Knight Termies
Blood Raven w/ LC&MM
Blood Raven w/ LC&MM

We played Capture and Control, and both set our objectives up as far forward as the scenario would allow it.  Turn 2 he decided to do a make or break move, and sent his ravens in, disembarking his guys, and banking on my rhinos dying.  2 of them did die, and his Termies ate the contents pretty easily.  I was able to get a counter-charge after a flurry of melta shots, and the termies bit the dust.  After that, it was a random game of trying to kill everything of eachother's, and in the end, if a Reclusiarch with a nearly full assault squad (including a power fist) had been able to kill a 5-man assault squad w/ priest, I'd have won 1-0, but alas, the fist whiffed all 6 rolls (because I charged that turn, the chaplain allowed me) and we drew.  I'm just as happy with a draw though.

What I took from the game:

-Grey Knight Termies with FNP are really hard to deal with, unless you're using melta, in which case they drop pretty quick.

-Death Company with 5 power weapons (6 if you count the chaplain) and a fist is pretty good, even against vehicles.  They laid waste to a few vehicles this game, and happily slaughtered through a grey knight squad all on their lonesome.

-I'm tired of using sternguard.  They just really haven't done too much other than die.  Yeah, they have more attacks, and the plasma *could* be cool, if someone would ever let their rhino not die turn 1.  Leaving them in reserve has done me no good, and so far, they've done almost nothing but die tragically.  I think their days are numbered.

-Storm Ravens are REALLY AWESOME when all you really have to deal with them is melta.  Las Cannons will drag them down easily enough I think, but wow was I hurting to kill those stupid things with only melta.

My second game that night (I played a double-header on Friday) was against Vince's Termies in Raiders again, with Khan.  We played 3 objectives in the middle (mostly because I asked if we could, since I haven't had a regular objective game for a really long time)

His list:

Librarian w/ Null Zone

2x10 tactical marines w/ melta/combi-melta, Las cannon, LC/TLP Razors, combat squadded
2x5 tactical marines w/ combi-flamer, LC/TLP Razors
TH/SS Termies is Crusader
TH/SS Termies is Crusader

2 MM/HF Speeders
2 AC/LC Preds

This was a really fun game, most likely because I just missed playing for Objectives- it makes games so much more interesting when you have a ton of things that both generals have to worry about, instead of in capture and control where one guy sits on his objective, and the other guy tries to take him completely off it, while hoping the other guy fails his outflank rolls.

So, we played, and he popped my rhinos fairly quickly, but not before my guys got into the middle of the board.  Death Company went on a rampage and killed a razor, 10 marines (from 2 separate squads) and were closing in on some termies by the time the game ended.  Khan outflanked in a corner near my board edge (murdering my poor 'forcibly disembarked' Librarian squad) and I was able to bring a rhino squad w/ Infernus and melta in and wreck his ride.  The termies then just sat there and took that poor squad apart, piece by piece, at the expense of not being relevant to the rest of the game.

Everything else was a bit cat-and-mouse, since he didn't want to sacrifice his remaining Raider, and my assault squads didn't want to sacrifice themselves.  In the end, it was in my favor not to sacrifice my guys, since then I could contest or control every objective at the end of the game.  It ended turn 5, with the score of 2-0 in my favor.

What I took from it:

-As always, it's tough to know how what to do in a game when an opponent can outflank a Land Raider with a special character and very killy squad.  Just gotta set traps, if you can.

-Jump Assault Squads with a Chaplain is really where it's at.  I can't describe how worth it they've been every game I've played- their crazy versatility and hard-hittingness makes me happy.  The fact they don't have to disembark from a rhino, makes a world of difference, I think.

-If an opponent fears melta bikes, it's a somewhat good thing, because then he's not shooting the rest of your army.  He's likely correct to fear the bikes, it just makes the rest of your army better off.  Yet another reason bikes rock.

My last game I played against yet another GK Termie variant.  This guy was the one who 'invented' the list, and inspired Zac to build his GK Termie list.  Before this weekend, they were both undefeated with their lists, curb-stomping just about everyone with them.  I was somewhat reluctant to face them, since everyone was screaming 'broken' about it, but it's always good to play against a list you're not sure about how well you'll do, so I'm happy it went forth :)

Here's his list (pretty different in overall makeup than Zac's):

GK Grand Master w/ Retinue

4x 7 Assault Marines w/ Melta, Infernus Pistol, Power Sword

2x Land Raider Crusaders
2x Storm Ravens

1 Sanguinary Priest

We decided to roll for a 'real' 'Ard Boyz mission, and got the 2nd one (Victory Points)

Kyle decided to play the 'you can't catch me' game, and destroyed my rhinos extremely quickly (as I've discovered is pretty normal in my games, lol).  I was smart enough to leave my melta bikes in reserve, and and my jump troops were still pretty mobile. 

A few turns of annoying 'I move, then get shot by him' turns, I was finally in position to threaten him.  An assault squad of mine jumped from behind the cover they were waiting in and popped a raider, also killing the termies inside with a nasty charge.  He counter-charged with his other GKT squad, and wiped mine, and I responded by counter-charging that squad with my other assault squad, killing them.  I was able to also kill a Storm Raven with reserved bikes, and his assault troops were being slowly whittled down by my FNP assault troops in rhinos (his priest died somewhat early) and he threw in the towel.  We didn't add up the victory points, but we agreed it would have been a win on my side.

What I took from this game:

-I changed the composition of my list somewhat, for this game.  I took death company w/ jump packs this time, with Lemartes, and also went with 'Infernus Pistol Spam' where every sergeant and IC that can have an Infernus got one.

-The infernus pistol changes were good, since my assault squad w/ Reclusiarch had 5 meltas, they could reliably pop a Land Raider.

-The Lemartes with jump troops wasn't as awesome, because they just jumped forward, and slowly got whittled down.  However, Lemartes DID manage to finally make it into the combat against the GK Grand Master, and almost single-handedly smoked the whole retinue.  S6 I7 A7 (power) on the charge is just too nasty.  Too bad it's uncontrollable.  I'd be happy to spend the points for that squad if it was controllable.

-GKT aren't as nasty as the people at my shop seem to think they are.  They're sort of like regular termies- they kill everything they charge.  If you treat them that way, you'll be okay.  They DO die to AP1 and 2 pretty easily, and with a squad that rapes face that hard, it's tough for them to NOT wipe a squad out entirely.

-Simply destroying my rhinos won't force me to lose the game, apparently.  In the old PDF, that used to be the case (with my army), and most of the reason I decided to wait until the new book came out before playing it anymore.  I now just need to learn ways to keep my rhinos from dying (like reserving them sometimes, etc.)

-Death Company really are pretty cool.  I think if I run them in the future, it'll be with a few infernus pistols, and more fists.  That way, when someone decides to 'flag' them with a vehicle, they'll simply kill it and move on.  Also, it's good insurance against a Storm Raven, since the rear AV12 can really hamper the effectiveness of my army.

Wow, this post was long.  I hope that you could learn something from this all- my days of playtesting the BA are almost over.  I think I know what I like now and what I don't like.  I'll post something up sometime soon about my overall thoughts on the codex, and how I think it should be played, overall.

Expect battle reports from 'Ard Boyz, unless I fail hard.  I'll still give recaps though, and how I should have played it different.  Well, have a good one!


Zac Pauga said...

I think your list is just really optimized vs the grey knights. Its a waste for them to paste any of your assault squads but in reverse your squads will kill them on the charge.

Anyone running any sort of death star has a lot to fear from GKT. also we've already discussed what I could have done instead of balls out 2nd turn.

ours was a good game I can honestly say though that I hope we don't get a rematch at ard boys :)

Chumbalaya said...

Wow, somebody's been a busy bee.

Glad to hear those BA are working out for you.

I like the idea of GKs in Ravens, but it's a metric ton of points. If anybody brings a decent number of autocannons/missile launchers, those Ravens get taken apart quick.