Archive for May, 2010

Flamestorm Baal

Been a while since I put up a post. Been busy. Here’s the completed Baal Predator, Flamestorm version.

Haven’t touched my Libby Dread for weeks. Need to get back to finishing it…


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Warmachines – Intro Game

Was at Hobby Forge last Sunday, where a friendly denizen gave me an intro game to Warmachines by Privateer Press. I’ve been hearing about this highly acclaimed game for years, but have yet to try it.

Anyway, Alif was nice enough to guide me in a small game. I played the Khador Faction, and faced Cygnar. Each player controlled only 1 Warcaster and 2 Warjacks. My Faction was 1 point smaller, but I was playing Alif’s own Faction. He knew all the tricks in his own army, and taught me to use it to great effect… I won against the Cyngar force, which he borrowed from someone else to play with me.

Initial Impressions: Warmachines is a skirmish level wargame. Game mechanics revolve around individual models, instead of units of models. Also, significantly, play is not conducted by ‘phases’, like 40k. Instead of moving your entire army in the ‘Movement Phase’, then shooting with the whole army in the ‘Shooting Phase’, etc… You move and activate individual models in your army, in turns. This is a huge difference in gameplay, as the sequence and manner you use each model in your army completely changes the battlescape and the options available to the rest of the army that has yet to move. It calls for a change in tactics…

Miniatures: OK, I’m not overwhelmed by the minis. They are good, but not significantly better than GW stuff. But as the game is a skirmish, there are less models to buy, resulting in a smaller monetary investment to get into the game.

Conculsion: I may consider starting up a barebones warband. After my Blood Angels are more or less completed, of course.

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Yup. Finally, the Ironclads have arrived. So now I can proceed with my Librarian Dreadnought project. And also do a couple of Furiosos after.

Thanks for nothing, Eyjafjallajökull!

The Icelandic volcano being blamed for all sorts of shipping delays since 27th March 2010.

Oh, well. Stuffs here, so… moving on.

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Time for another TheoryHammer post. When the Stormraven model becomes available, how would I field it?

At 200 points without any upgrades, the Stormraven Gunship is frightfully expensive for an armour 12 transport. Expect it to go down without much effort from enemy fire. And, for those who are clueless, Ceramite Plating isn’t going to save it from melta when your armour is only 12. Heck, you don’t even need melta, autocannons will kill it just fine…

But, apart from having a hull made of paper, it’s pretty awesome. It’s a fast skimmer, so it’s about the fastest thing this side of the Imperial lines that has full transport capacity (12, which puts it on equal footing to the Redeemer’s transport capacity) and then some (it can also transport a Dreadnought on top of the aforementioned 12).

(For purposes of comparison, the Valkyrie, also armour 12, is only half the points cost)

The Stormraven also has the ‘Grav Chute Insertion’ rule (except it’s called ‘Skies of Blood’). In addition, it’s an Assault Vehicle. Plus you can transport your jump marines (counting as 2 infantry each). Which means, you can deliver your jump guys at unprecedented speeds (24 inches a go) in relative safety, then assault out of the Gunship at the opportune moment (but not if you’ve moved ‘flat-out’). Your guys won’t look utterly stupid after they wipe the enemy in close combat and can’t reach the next enemy due to moving just 6″ a turn (they have jump packs), because you simply can’t rely on your transport to be there always. This makes your Sanguinary Guard pretty attractive (for once), especially if you have the usual buffs from your Priest / Chaplain / Librarian. Watch as almost anything get massacred under their charge…

Tactica -wise, the charge won’t be that easy to pull-off (without undesirable consequences, see below)…

Here’s the dilemma. If you make use of the Assault Vehicle rule, you’ll end up close to your opponent with little cover, and the Gunship will get shot up or assaulted. If you use Skies of Blood to deliver your ‘payload’ of psycho-head-case marines (I’m looking at you, Furious Charging nutcases that Ignore Injury and re-roll misses to hit) to the enemy lines, you’ll be able to pot shot from a far with your Gunship later and avoid virtually certain destruction, BUT your assault elements will end up being shot up instead (since they haven’t charged into close combat).

In terms of weaponry, the Gunship is no pushover either. It comes with Twin-Linked Heavy Bolter, Twin-linked Assault Cannon and 4 Bloodstrike missiles, standard. That’s some serious firepower, but you can further add in Hurricane Bolter sponsons for a modest points cost, and/or exchange existing guns with even sexier apparel, such as Typhoon Missiles and/or (all twin-linked) Multi-melta, Plasmacannons, Lascannons… (for free except the Typhoon and Lascannons)

Unfortunately, you probably won’t be able to get off more than 1 or 2 shots before your opponent decides he’s had enough, and downs your Gunship with little more than a stern look (it’s so dem fragile).

Conclusion: The Stormraven is NOT easy to use. And at such a high cost, a wrong play in the game will really hurt you.

All right, that’s it for unit analysis. Let’s do some list-fu:

I’ve this crazy idea. Take Dante to make Sanguinary Guard Troops. Take a Sanguinary Guard with some melta upgrades, accompanied by Sanguinary Priest with Jump Pack. Load them into the Stormraven. Also carry with the Stormraven a Librarian Dread, with Shield of Sanguinius and either Blood Lance or Might of Heroes.  This combo costs a staggering  700+ points. Have Dante lead another Sanguinary Guard loaded with melta. They’ll deepstrike (without scatter). Now take another Stormraven with similar set-up to the first, and/or load up with Baals and Sanguinary Guard until you reach the points limit.

Tactica: The Stormraven(s) deploy in cover or out of sight. The Baals Scout forward into as much cover as possible, and the rest of the army are in reserves. There shouldn’t be anything (or much of anything) for the enemy to shoot at, if you’re not going first. On your turn, fly the Stormraven(s) 12″ and let go with all its firepower (remember that you can target more than 1 enemy unit because of Power of the Machine Spirit). If you did it right, you should also be able to manouvre your Baals to obscure the Stormraven(s). Shoot everything on your Baals while enjoying 5+ cover, courtesy of the Libby Dread (remember that you measure from the hull of the Stormraven, so you should be good). Hopefully you can weather the enemy return fire on his turn. On your second turn, you should be in range to charge whatever you want with the contents of your Stormraven (Guard + Dread). Continue keeping them close so everyone benefits from the Twin Bubbles of Awesome (TM) generated by the Libby and the Priest. Try to position so that the enemy can’t assault your vehicles no matter what.

The Guard and the Dread can handle almost anything in close combat. With a Priest, the Guard are also next to impossible to kill without AP2 weapons. 2+ armour save with 4+ Ignore Injury (Feel No Pain), and in close combat, the enemy probably needs a 5 to hit them (reduced to WS1 because of Death Mask). Expect to receive about 72 lasgun shots for each wound taken. When they charge, even enemy marines will quake. It’s 15 attacks (without banner buff) hitting on 3s, re-rolling 1 miss each, wounding at Strength 5 and ignoring armour, not including the Priest, who will have a power weapon at least. Expect 9 dead marines, without assistance from the Priest (he should stay in the transport anyway).

The Dread is there to make sure that horde or monstrous creatures don’t trouble you overmuch. It can also destroy armour 14 with impunity (meltagun, Blood Lance for multiple targets, and 4(+D3) Strength 10 assaults), and can instant kill with its Strength 6 force weapon if needs be (in case Strength 10 can’t do the job). The Dread has armour 13, so ordinary Guardsmen can’t touch him, even with a fist or krak grenades. Marines have a small chance with a fist (pen only on 6). With Meltabombs, you need a 6 to even hit (only one attack per meltabomb equipped guy at that). The Dread will most likely hit on 3s, in return (WS6), and can benefit from Furious Charge (thereby hitting marines first) if within 6″ of the Priest.

Everyone and their pet bat has Furious Charge, Ignore Injury (Feel No Pain) and minimum 5+ cover save. The rest of the army (that’s the Baals and the Sanguinary Guard squads without Transports) will act more in a supporting shooty (Baals mostly, though Angelus Boltguns and Infernus Pistols are decent too) cum assault role (Guard).

The main weakness is that this army has too few bodies. It can’t take a pounding, so you’ll have to play with the utmost care, to avoid getting slaughtered.

I think I’ll try building something like this when the Stormraven model comes out.

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All right, here’s the list I’ve been fooling around with:

Mephiston, Lord of Death

Librarian in Terminator Armour and Stormshield (Shield of Sanguinius and Unleash Rage)
7 Assault Terminators (3 with Thunderhammers + Stormshields)
Dedicated Transport: Land Raider Crusader (Multi melta & Extra Armour)

5-man Assault Squad (Meltagun, Powerfist, Infernus Pistol)
Sanguinary Priest
Razorback with Assault Cannon and Stormbolter

5-man Assault Squad (Meltagun, Powerfist, Infernus Pistol)
Razorback with Assault Cannon and Stormbolter

5 Scouts with Camo Cloaks (Sniper Rifles)

Baal Predator (Assault Cannon + Heavy Bolter sponsons)

Baal Predator (Flamestorn, Stormbolter and Dozer Blade)

5-man Devastators (3 Plasma Cannons)

Furioso (Magna Grapple, Extra Armour and Drop Pod)

Points: around 1,990

There are 5 tanks, 1 Walker, 5 Infantry squads, 2 HQs. 14 Kill points to concede, 3 scoring units. Except for the Scouts (who infiltrate) and the Devastators (who shouldn’t be moving around), everyone is fully mobile or has a drop pod. Problem? Troops are few and fragile. I would like to squeeze in some jump infantry, for fluff. Still playing around with the possibilities…

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I’ve yet to receive my Ironclads, which would enable me to proceed with my ‘Psyker Entombed: Librarian Dreadnought’ project, presenting my SlamDunk (TM) pose for the first time on a Walker! The Razorback, Assault Squad and accompanying Sanguinary Priest were painted last week. Now, the Sanguinary Guard are finished. Will the whole freaking army be completed before the dem Ironclads finally reach me?!?! Jeez.

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