11/30/2011

Back in the Action

So after months of being unable to play, I'm happy to say I've finally gotten a game in. It was way overdue, and I'd been craving it for so long.

Despite my rustiness, I actually won the game last night facing both Black Templars and Ultramarines in a 2,000-point 2v1 battle.

Here are some pictures taken by the Ultramarines player, Frank, with his iPhone.

Surprise!

"Objectives captured!"

"Stand your ground!"

Terminators teleport flawlessly into battle.

Rock 'Em, Sock 'Em Robots!
The highlight of the battle was Frank's Assault Terminators and Chaplain disembarking from the Land Raider Crusader but falling short of their assault distance by about half an inch, turning them into sitting ducks before my massive gunline and full Assault Marine squad. They were shot to ribbons quite quickly.

Hopefully I'll be able to game again next week, providing I don't have to work again. Until then!

10/12/2011

Moving (Part 2)

Unfortunately, moving has taken considerably longer than anticipated. I have not forgotten about this blog, and believe me when I say I've wanted to game so badly this past month.

I really have nothing more to add right now, but I hope to be back to my normal gaming self relatively soon.

Until then!

9/13/2011

Moving

I want to apologize for my lack of updates recently. It's not because I lost interest in the hobby or this blog, but due to moving. For the past couple weeks, I've had to box up all my stuff in preparation.


So, all my hobby stuff is packaged and ready for movement. As much as I'd love to be doing some painting at night, or playing a game on Tuesdays, I'm unable to do so at the moment.

And coincidentally, during this same time frame, my local gaming store (the Whiz) has also moved.

On the bright side, once the moving is done, I'll be able to unpack my stuff and start gaming again. Hooray!

But for now, just sit tight, the updates will flow again soon. Until then, I'll be playing Space Marine and Dawn of War to hold me over.

9/08/2011

Review: Space Marine

About a month ago, I preordered Space Marine from Walmart.com (so I could get the 'relic bolter' skin in multiplayer). As the first game I've ever bought on its release day, Space Marine did not disappoint.

Space Marine: Go hard or go home!
The plot centers around three Ultramarines sent to the forge world planet of Graia, after receiving a distress call from an Inquisitor named Drogan warning of an Ork invasion.

As expected, there are some twists and turns in the story. But this is pretty normal for anything 40K.

One of the interesting notes about the Xbox 360 achievements is that there is only one for beating the game... and it requires hard mode. So unlike Halo 3, Batman: Arkham Asylum, Aliens vs. Predator, Call of Duty: Black Ops, and so many other games, it has no achievement for completing it on easy or normal.

That being said, I decided to go for it and try it on hard mode. Surprisingly, it wasn't too bad. A bit of a challenge, but not as hard as I had feared.

However, I did notice that the two Ultramarines that travel alongside you actually do very little in terms of help. In fact, if we were to focus this review solely on them, they'd be the game's entire downfall. They literally stand around until attacked. When a horde of Orks swarmed us, they'd stand still, fire a few bursts of bolter fire, and be overwhelmed in a matter of seconds. Then once they had four or five Orks hitting them with choppas, they'd pull out chainswords and slash at them a couple of times. Even their bolts seem to do less damage than mine, and they have horrendous aim.

Thankfully, the companions are invincible, but when turrets are involved, they're not targeted. This makes tactical decisions such as having an ally distract the turret while you destroy it impossible.

Inquisitor Drogan himself says in the game, "[The turrets] will target anything unfortunate enough to move," and yet there's your companions just walking around like absolute dolts directly in front of turrets neither shooting at them nor being shot at, like it's a warm sunny day and they're on the beach.

These are supposed to be battle-hungry Space Marines! The Emperor's fury! Major facepalm in this area.

But I digress, that minor gameplay irritation barely affects the game as a whole. And I doubt most players would even notice it.

Inquisitor Drogan

The controls are, for the most part, pretty easy and basic. The only difficulty I've had so far, which appears to be shared by others, is controlling my character when he's wearing a jump pack. The jump pack provides a quick, two-shot burst from its engines, sending you high into the air, but jump distance and flight steering is much more limited than a player would expect.

That, and landing is incredibly annoying. Sure, you could land with a "ground pound" with enemies nearby, but multiplayer seems to be a mass confusion of "Where'd he go? He was right under me a second ago!" followed by spamming the X button (melee attack) and rotating in circles hoping to hit someone that has apparently disappeared. And usually upon landing, you'll die in a hail of bullets before your combat weapon even strikes your intended opponent.

The weapons are your typical Imperial arsenal: chainsword, power axe, power sword, thunder hammer, bolt bistol, plasma pistol, bolter, stalker-pattern bolter, storm bolter, meltagun, plasmagun, heavy bolter, lascannon, plasmacannon, and autocannon. The NPC Guardsmen use standard lasguns.

The only new weapon they introduced is the 'vengeance launcher', which I didn't like at all. Basically, it just fires up to five mines onto the ground, to which you can remotely detonate with each tap of a button, in reverse order from when they were laid out. To be effective, enemies must be charging at you. Using it for shoot outs is useless. Who knows, it could be a really helpful weapon, but I went through the entire campaign on hard mode and never needed it once.

The plasma weaponry was also implemented poorly. They overheat quickly, which is appropriate, but their damage output is pathetic. It often takes four to six shots at an Ork Boy to kill him, and by that point your plasma pistol will have reached 50% of its heatsink cap. I personally preferred using bolt weapons over any plasma technology because of this.

The pros:
-Fantastic, 40K-worthy story.
-Amazing graphics.
-Badass execution kills.
-Massive customization in multiplayer.
-Many Imperial weapon options.

The cons:
-Somewhat clunky controls in multiplayer.
-Friendly AI rarely attacks (ranged or melee).
-Allies aren't targeted by enemy turrets.
-Very linear campaign (no exploration).
-Disappointing plasma weaponry, and the vengeance launcher.

Score: 4/5

8/30/2011

Analysis: Eternal Warrior

I've come to realize that Eternal Warrior is such a game-breaking USR. And probably my biggest annoyance of playing the game. There's few things I can think of, in 40K's game mechanics, that bother me as much as Eternal Warrior.

I hate, hate, hate having to whittle down three- or four-wound units that typically have incredible armor/invulnerable saves to begin with. Does Games Workshop even realize how difficult it is to land a shot, inflict a wound, and have the opponent fail his save?


The worst part about Eternal Warrior is it's typically only granted to special characters. There are rare exceptions though, such as Daemon Princes. It can't be taken as an upgrade choice either, so if you plan on making your own badass Chapter Master or Chaos Lord or Autarch or Warboss or Hive Tyrant then you're out of luck.

Whenever I see an Eternal Warrior model on the table, I have to make a choice: Focus firepower at it or completely ignore it.

Considering the only way to kill an Eternal Warrior creature is to target the majority of your shots at it and hope for the best, while the rest of your opponent's army moves in on you unopposed, I usually choose to ignore it for as long as possible. And then, once I've destroyed most of my enemy's forces, that one remaining Eternal Warrior model is left unscratched and kills off my army unit-by-unit in close combats.

So here are my solutions: Rather than completely negating Instant Death, Eternal Warrior should either A) provide a 2+ invulnerable save or B) allow the unit to re-roll any failed saves. That way, they retain their longevity on the battlefield while there's still a chance they can be killed off with a super lucky shot from the proper weapon. And even if we have to pay 100 points for the USR, give us the option to do so!

8/09/2011

Round Six: Pizza is Good

At last, the Summer League is over. I'm both disappointed and relieved.

Disappointed because my team didn't win any games. The closest we got to winning was my one draw. And relieved because now I can actually stray on the occasional Tuesday night and stay home if I feel lazy. I can finally focus more on my models and less on any upcoming games.

Deployment... we all had so many reserves!
But anyway. The final game of the league was insane. Three boards linked together, a bunch of special rules (IE, infiltrating from one table to another but can't return; teleporting from one table randomly onto another or back on itself, each player having his own secret goals, capturing a frig-load of objectives, etc.).

My team was creamed. I am quite proud though, considering my force was able to hold its own pretty well against Grey Knights until they were reinforced by another player's Grey Knights. I was able to get some assistance from a couple of Daemons units, but it wasn't enough to change the tide.

That's all, folks!
The pizza was Papa Gino's, and it was delicious. Having spent $20 to get into the Summer League, I figured I'd try to get my money's worth and had four slices and a can of Mountain Dew (still not a $20 value but made me feel slightly better about my horrendous losses).

Trophies, awards and gift certificates were given out at the end of the night. My team got an award for "Most Dedicated Team", and my teammate Dan took home the trophy for "Best Sportsman".

For now, I'm going to take it easy. Since the league is over I can chill out and relax, and work casually on my models at a leisurely pace. Feels good.

8/02/2011

Round Five: No Chance

Guess what! Yup, another loss. Both Daniel and I got massacred. I was tabled by the end of turn four by Imperial Guard.

"Open fire!"
I did manage to blow up a tank and a kill off a Command Squad though. Aside from that, I didn't stand much of a chance to begin with.

In my defense, I used the exact same anti-Ork list as last week. Go on, ask me why I didn't take any anti-mech.

First, I just don't care anymore. It's at the point now in the league where my team hasn't won a single game, and we're in dead last. There's no chance of making a comeback, so I simply wanted to see how long my force could last unprepared against mechanized Guard.

And second, my opponent Willem is almost impossible to beat. He just builds spammy, tank-heavy lists that are practically unstoppable.

Next week is the final game for our team in the Summer League. I believe there will also be a pizza party, so that's about the only thing to look forward to for me.

I'm not a sore loser, but I certainly won't be doing another league/tournament again. If it was free, I wouldn't be so bothered by it. But I paid $20 to get in, and now I see what a waste it was. Oh well. You live and you learn, right?

7/27/2011

Round Four: Nothing

The Summer League isn't going well for my team. At all. We have yet to win a single match. The closest we've come to winning is a tie I had with my opponent in the first round.

We officially suck. And last night's game fared no better for me.

Just after deployment, I stole the initiative!

I was eradicating my opponent Matt's Orks in the first few turns, but eventually my army lost steam and my rolls began to fail me.

Using flamers, a heavy flamer on a deep-striking Dreadnought, orbital bombardment, Deathwind missile launcher on my Drop Pod, and Vengeance missiles from my Whirlwind, I took out massive chunks of his Boyz.

My Terminators didn't arrive until turn four, which was much too late at that point to do anything.

It wasn't enough though. My eventual doom was handed to me by Ghazghkull Thraka and a squad of whatever the Ork version of Terminators are called.

Matt was able to capture two of the three objectives on the field and win the game.

Terminators arrive too late. The battle is lost.

I really don't think I'll be doing another league or tournament again until they update the Space Marines codex to be at least somewhat viable. I blame the majority of my losses on the current edition for being so underpowered. It's annoying, really.

I have two make up games to do this week, so hopefully I can find time to fit those into my schedule. There's a pizza party on August 9th, and I think my team will only be celebrating how terribly we lost. At least I was named our team champion though!

7/21/2011

Help is on the Way

Went to the Whiz today to vote for my model in the Summer League, and there was a $10 certificate waiting for me there. I immediately decided to use it to buy a second Drop Pod.

My list of 40K projects is getting pretty long now. And that's not a good thing.

I often warn newcomers to the hobby that it's easy to overwhelm yourself. And right now, I'm not exactly motivated. Plus I've been rather busy.

Some of my current projects.

My list of in-the-works projects:
01) Super-secret project.
02) Second Drop Pod.
03) Two meltagun Marines.
04) Terminator Librarian.
05) Regular Terminator.
06) Land Raider Crusader.
07) Planetary Empires tiles.
08) Cities of Death buildings.
09) Haunted forest terrain piece.
10) The broken Aquila terrain piece.
11) Over a dozen barricades and walls.
12) Numerous craters and assorted terrain pieces.

I don't regret buying or starting any of these projects though. They're very much needed.

The second Drop Pod is essential, as are the meltagun Marines, my secret project and Terminator Librarian. My army is lacking these things, and they would help so much.

Terrain can wait for now, but the actual army projects need to be finished soon. But like I said, motivation is such an issue.

7/19/2011

Feuer Frei

My scheduled opponent wasn't available to battle for the league tonight, so instead I faced a new non-League player: Tim.

Tim has a beautifully painted Tau army, and I mean it is gorgeous. The color scheme plays on blues, and he added so many freehand details to his models such as stripes and electricity bolts. Great skills.

Shortly after deployment.
Stealth Suits fired eighteen shots but inflicted only one casualty.
Sandwiching his forces.
My Drop Pod contesting the objective (circled).

I won the game, 1-0. I knew I had the game once I realized his tactic of deploy in a corner and form a spearhead of tanks shielding his troops. All I had to do was approach him from three angles, dividing his firepower and making him unable to avoid my units in melee. Initially, I was attacking him from four angles, but my Dreadnought that arrived via Drop Pod behind his army died shortly after inflicting only one casualty.

Overall, it was a really good game. Tim's a great player and very fun to play against.

Somehow I need to make up my Summer League match this week before Tuesday, but I have work almost every day and I'll be gone for most of Saturday. Oh well, we'll see what happens. Until next time!

7/15/2011

Review: Kill Team

Probably one of the most fun arcade games I've played in a while, I must hand it to THQ that this was better than expected.

The game itself is an odd mix of 40K and third-person shooter. The controls take only a few minutes to adapt to, and after that you're ready to go.

The leveling system is easy enough. The more points you accumulate by killing creatures or destroying things, the more stuff you unlock or upgrade. You can even replay the previous mission, or any prior missions, with your freshly leveled character.

I'm currently playing as the Librarian, waiting to start the fourth mission once I find the last two tokens on the third which repeatedly escape my perception. I've pretty much unlocked everything for my character already.

The only complaints I can really come up with are that there's only five missions in total, no online co-op, and frequently bad camera angles. But for $9.99, you get your money's worth - especially considering it unlocks the power sword in the upcoming Space Marine game.

Score: 4/5

7/12/2011

Round Three: Fall Back

Once again, my camera's batteries died, so I have but only one picture to post. And it's not even that good.

The blue circles and crater represented Drop Pod explosions.
I faced a Black Templar army this week. My opponent, Tyler, was once again a fantastic enemy to battle against. Very fun and I look forward to facing him again.

The rules of this week's scenario were very odd. Basically, every piece of terrain was an objective, and any unit had to be wholly within or atop it in order for it to be captured (or contested). There were other factors too, like keeping your HQs alive and destroying your opponent's most expensive unit.

At first, I was leading. With my army fully deployed and positioned, Tyler's Drop Pods were always landing in my kill zones. But then Lady Luck decided I wasn't attractive enough for her, and my rolls became horrendously bad. Yup, I caught the "all ones and twos" bug. Around turn three is when the table flipped, and Tyler had the upper hand. He soon wiped out my forces with his Terminators.

I lost so miserably, I won't even disclose the score.

Alright, I will. It ended at 30-9. Yeah, it was that bad.

I did, however, come in third place (officially) in the painting competition with my Whirlwind. So yay for me on that.

In creativity news, I've also begun writing the names of my characters on their bases in white. So far so good. I really dig having my own chapter with my own characters and fluff. The only downside is I named my Librarian as Dante, which is also the name of the Blood Angels' infamous Chaplain. People are starting to pick up on the Red Dragons name though.

Oh well. Hopefully I'll do better next week.

7/05/2011

Practice Makes Imperfect

My team wasn't able to play this week due to our scheduled opponents having to battle their opponents from last week. I guess they went to Canada for vacation so they weren't around to partake in the previous round.

However, I still got a throwdown game in tonight against one of the judges: Dorian and his Space Wolves. Have I mentioned how much I hate Space Wolves?

Despite not being a Summer League match, we still used this week's scenario rules so I could practice for my match. The rules were odd, to say the least: Pitched Battle, Kill Points, and factoring Victory Points and other score modifiers.

Regardless, Dorian absolutely creamed my army.

He fielded Logan Grimnar, Njal Stormcaller, a squad of Terminators, a Venerable Dreadnought, and two Drop Pods packed with Wolf Guard Terminators.

With that many 2+ saves, all with invulnerables, you can imagine just how badly things went for me.

Things that make a grown man cry!

Scouts never stood a chance...

Dreadnought vs Venerable Dreadnought.

On the plus side, I was able to kill both Njal and Logan, and one of his Wolf Guard Terminator squads. But I won't deny his kills far outweighed whatever casualties I could inflict upon him.

It was a fun game. The majority of my rolls were horrendously bad, once again. Hope this will help my tactics for my upcoming battle.

Oh, and I also bought four mini-dice, which will make for excellent wound counters. They're roughly half the size of GW's standard D6, and red, so they won't be confused with anything else, and they're small enough to blend in unlike most fat, ugly dice blocks do next to models. I'm also contemplating getting a few D3s too, but unfortunately I've only seen them online.

Until next time!

6/30/2011

Round Two: Winning Isn't Everything

To begin with, I must apologize for my late post. I've been putting this post off for a couple days now because I had to rethink the events of the night and put them into perspective before reporting them.

For starters, my Chaplain tied for third place in the painting competition. Sort of. He actually placed fourth because his competitor had a painted base and knocked him out of the top three bracket. I can understand, to an extent. Overall, sure, the other model was about the same quality but with a done-up base.

However, they never notified us that bases would be a factor of the painting competition. And I refuse to paint or decorate my bases. It's not a matter of laziness or lack of creativity, I just feel like the bases better represent the model's shadow. Black matches everything, from volcanic lava fields to snowy plains. I don't want to put grass on a base and have him play a desert game. Does this make sense?

I also don't want to take away from the model. The black base makes the model itself stand out more, like a picture frame would for a painting. I like that.

But I will not put down those who do their bases. It's a matter of preference, and if someone wants to do it, go for it.

My biggest issue is the summer league's main rule is all models must be fully painted. They made no mention of the basing. So I was clearly not expecting to be downgraded because of my choice in modeling.

And to add to the frustration of it, it seems rather lazy or cheap on the organizers' part to not accept a draw. It's not like I came in first or even second.

But anyway, had I been a judge, I would've chosen the other kid's model as well. Honestly I think his was better to begin with and I'm amazed I "tied" with him. I just wish they informed us that bases would be considered in painting score.

The games themselves went pretty bad. Dan and Jack lost (they did last week, too). I lost, and had probably one of the worst games I've played in a while. Tactically, I did well. Rolling, I did even better. My opponent, however, brought a tournament mindset to the event which wasn't fun at all.

It was my understanding that the summer league is about two things: having fun playing 40K in a pseudo-competitive series of games, and fielding fully painted armies. Last week's game was fun. I rolled almost all ones and twos, but I had a good time doing it.

The whole "win at all costs" mentality is the reason I stray from tournaments. I like to win, but I don't mind losing either. I play this game for fun, not for anything else. I know most people assume I play 40K for the chicks, but I can assure you it's for the laughs.

Regardless, the end score was 12-9 (KP). I did pretty well but fell short. Oh well.

We'll see how next week's game goes. Hopefully it's a better experience. So far I'm contemplating not joining the next league.

6/23/2011

Round One: Fight!

Summer League kicked off this week and I signed up without hesitation. In a bit of a paradox, we have more participants but less teams than last time; but it can attributed to the rules changing to allow up to four players per team. My teammates are Jack (Daemons) and Dan (Chaos Marines).

Unfortunately my match was postponed and we had to reschedule it for earlier tonight. On the bright side, my match ended in a draw. In truth, I would've won had it not been for my Land Speeder falling short a friggin' inch from contesting an objective.

I have to admit, I love playing against a fully painted army. My opponent, Sam, was an excellent sportsman and avid player, fielding Chaos Marines (painted as Iron Warriors).

Pictures of the match:
Majority of his force, clustered around the objective.
Infiltrating seemed like a good idea at the time.
Both objectives held, a melee in the center.
End-game.
An inch away from victory.
Somewhere around the third turn I got lucky as I vaporized Sam's Chaos Lord with a lascannon shot before it could reinforce an ongoing assault against my Marines.

I must also point out that Sergeant Alistair was able to kill a Possessed model with a single bolt pistol shot while voluntarily falling back from a close combat with a Defiler.

Great game. I had some absolutely horrendous rolls but I'll gladly accept a tie over a loss. Next week's league match should be interesting. Until then!

6/07/2011

Game Over, Man

Made it to the Whiz tonight, and I had a damn good game. I lost, but it was so close. My opponent was fielding Chaos Marines. He hadn't played 40K in roughly five years, he said, so he was a bit rusty.

Mission was Annihilation. Deployment was Spearhead. I got first turn.

Deployment.
My trusty Drop Pod and Dreadnought arrive.
My Dreadnought took out both a five-man squad and a Defiler!
"Brace for impact!"

I must make a few quick notes about this game, because some pretty cool stuff happened.

First, my Dreadnought took out five Chaos Marines (one of which had a meltagun) in two rounds of melee without suffering any damage. Then, on the following turn, the Dreadnought's assault cannon opened fire on the Defiler's side armor, penetrated it and caused it to explode!

Second, after 10 Khorne Berserkers shredded the majority of my 10-man tactical squad, my Chapter Master and retinue charged them and wrecked house.

And third, my opponent's Rhino was unstoppable. I fired at least seven lascannon and five krak missile shots into it. The only thing closest to a real damage result I was able to achieve was a friggin' weapon destroyed. To make matters worse, after it unloaded its Berserker cargo, it was used on the last turn to ram my immobilized and weaponless Land Speeder, making an easy kill point to win my opponent the game!

I believe my opponent's name was Ryan. I look forward to playing him again. I led the match by about two kill points above him until the last two turns, where he was able to make three kills with some incredible luck and unexpected-yet-brilliant tactical decisions. We ended at 5-4 KPs. Insane.

6/06/2011

Break the Chains

The last two weeks I haven't been to the Whiz for a game. Sorry folks. I'll be there tomorrow though, ready to throw down. And I'm going to try to be early, because the very last time I went the place was packed.

The new summer league starts June 21st, roughly two weeks from now. I'll be joining this one for sure. I don't think Jesse or Erica will have finished painting their armies by then, so I'm looking for a partner. Shouldn't be too difficult to find one.

In other news, I started boringly painting my Land Raider Crusader but stopped after sudden inspiration hit me. I won't say yet what my new super-secret project is, but I'm painting it now and it's actually pretty close to being done. I'll give you a hint: it's in memory of one of my heroes.

Oh, and I am absolutely pumped for the Space Marine and Kill Team video games. I'll be getting both for the Xbox 360.

Since Kill Team unlocks the power sword in Space Marine, I'm going to pre-order Space Marine from Walmart so I can also get the golden bolter for it. How sweet would that look?

On a side note, despite it being unnoticeable for the most part, my blog has received a few upgrades and enhancements in certain areas. It's all behind the scenes stuff, but it betters the site overall.

I'll make a post tomorrow or later this week with the results of tomorrow's game.

5/19/2011

Side Project

Let it be known at the beginning of this post: I am not boycotting Games Workshop or quitting Warhammer 40,000. I'm still very much into 40K now as I ever have been before. That being said, Warhammer 40,000 is a game of medium to large scale battles, with no true progression. In it you essentially play a general, sending your forces to war.

What I'm currently interested in is being a character. That's right, I'm looking to get back into RPGs.

Yes, I know there's Rogue Trader, Dark Heresy, and Deathwatch, but if I'm to start something different, I'd like it to be in an entirely separate universe.

I already own Dungeons & Dragons v3.5 and Rifts. My problems are the communities. Dungeons & Dragons and Rifts can be amazingly fun, but it's relatively hard to find a good gaming group. Especially for Rifts, which in my opinion is a better system and universe than D&D has to offer. But that's just my opinion.

I'm thinking about getting into BattleTech. I like the concept of having giant robot vehicles battling it out, and then progressing my character through the MechWarrior system.

Call me crazy, but I don't always want to be the commander overlooking a battlefield. Sometimes I want to be the guy on the front lines risking life or limb for my faction.

I've ordered the BattleTech 25th Anniversary boxed set, so we'll see what comes of it, if anything. For all I know, it could end up like my Magic: The Gathering gaming: non-existent.

5/17/2011

The Folly of Games Workshop


Honestly, I'm not one to rant against GW, nor am I a fanboy. I've been in the hobby for five years now, so I'm fairly used to the price hikes and absurd business tactics. But for the longest time, I knew that tabletop gaming was a niche hobby that was expensive to begin with. I realized that we don't buy Land Raiders weekly, nor add 10-man squads to our forces on a monthly basis.

However, this time I think they've managed to sink their ship, and my frustration with them has peaked to the point where I must vocally condemn their marketing decisions.

Let me explain why I believe that this year could easily be the financial downfall of Games Workshop.

1) Introducing Citadel Finecast. Yes, we're all happy that metals are being replaced with some form of plastic or resin. It'll be much easier to work with, and should've been cheaper for the consumer. This is not the case, sadly, as GW has decided to increase their prices yet again on all previously metal blisters for the convenience of re-casting them as plastic.

2) Another annual price increase on everything else. From codices to box sets, and even starter kits, the prices are increasing from 25¢ to $15. When I started this hobby, in early 2006, I bought the fourth edition starter kit (Battle for Macragge) for an affordable $45. Now the price for fifth edition's starter kit (Assault on Black Reach) will be increased to $99. That's more than double the cost! And yes, I realize it comes with "so much more", but this is a starter kit, not a "value box". GW should've realized this when deciding what models to put in it.

3) Forcing European stores to stop selling outside the EU. Before, GW had stopped online retailers from doing many things: having shopping carts, underselling their products, using GW's images on their store's site. But now they've taken it a step too far, I feel. They shouldn't really care who the independent retailers are selling to, so long as their product is selling and they're still getting their large chunk of the profit.

4) Killing the hype. For some bizarre reason, GW has decided not to inform retailers ahead of time about new releases. This is a poor decision all around. First, there's no hype for the new product. Second, the store won't be able to take preorders and thus won't be able to inventory their shelves correctly. Third, considering how expensive this hobby is becoming, people won't be able to save up for the product to buy it on release day. Think of how many teens play this hobby and have to do chores, or save their allowance, to afford anything. Even us adults usually have to skip a few meals or cut back in other areas, or even work overtime, to purchase any new stuff these days.

It's not that I'm tired of GW. I love their games and their products, especially their novels and books. I would prefer to see them continue developing the games I enjoy playing. And no, I'm not switching over to Warmachine or Hordes out of frustration. But I feel like Games Workshop aren't just shooting themselves in the foot, they're practically swallowing a live grenade with these decisions. I'm just hoping they'll survive such foolish actions.

5/10/2011

Never Despair

Tonight's game was too close for comfort. Yes, I won, which is fantastic because now I've won more games than I've lost (see Battle Tally); but it was barely won.

To start with, I think this was my first game against Space Wolves since their redone codex. A lot of people are saying Space Wolves are overpowered. They also said that about Blood Angels and Imperial Guard.

The Blood Angels are a fair challenge to me, but I can beat them. With the Imperial Guard, I'm going to have to agree they're a bit overpowered. The Space Wolves, on the other hand, are undoubtedly the most overpowered force I've ever seen!

Space Wolves and Imperial Guard are the only forces I've faced so far that are stupidly overpowered. I really don't want to play either of them again, unless it's a mega-battle or team game.

I don't remember too many specifics of his 2,000-point force, but I believe it was comprised of three or four Wolf Priests, a few squads of Grey Hunters in Rhinos, a Drop Pod with more Grey Hunters, two squads of Long Fangs (mostly with missile launchers), a Dreadnought, a squad of three Thunderwolves, a single Thunderwolf, and a squad of scouts.

In absolute honesty, if we weren't playing objectives (with a Dawn of War deployment), he would've tabled me with ease. I also lucked out by destroying his Rhinos early on.

Red Dragons versus red Space Wolves?!

Thankfully, in the last turn, his only Troops choice within 3" of the objective marker was falling back. I won by a technicality, 1-0.

Unfortunately my camera's batteries died at the beginning of turn two, so I didn't really get any pictures tonight. Next time I'll be sure to bring spares!

5/05/2011

Bring It On

I won. Again. I'm having a difficult time believing it. Are my tactics improving? Is it luck? Who knows. What I do know is I nearly tabled another opponent, this time playing as Tyranids.

Deployment as usual.

There were three Hive Guard but they died rather quickly.

My Commander probably wouldn't have survived this...

...But my Devastators neutralized the Warriors before they could assault.

By turn five, I had captured two of the three objectives, and all that remained of his force was a Hive Tyrant accompanied by a Tyrant Guard, and a couple Zoanthropes locked in close combat with my Dreadnought.

When rolling to see if the game would go on, we rolled a one. Game over. Victory is mine!

4/26/2011

I Bring the Suffering

My luck has to run out pretty soon because, for the second week in a row, I won tonight's game by tabling my opponent.

Although, I have to clarify a few things first. My opponent, Tobin, was fielding Blood Angels. And it was his first game of Warhammer 40,000. However, he's migrating to 40K from Warmachine, so he has a pretty good grasp already of how tabletop games work.

This was my first game using Captain Killmatic. To my surprise, he managed to absolutely tear through Tobin's 10-man Assault Squad and most of a 5-man Tactical Squad before finally going down from a Librarian's force staff.

And I finally managed to battle the new Stormraven unit too. When all was said and done, though, the Stormraven was shaken, shaken, and then blew up without doing so much as move halfway across the board. Shame, really. It did drop a Furioso Dreadnought onto the table after, though.

Different angles tell the story best.

The only real flaw I saw in his tactics was how he deep struck his reserves. He had a squad of Death Company and a squad of Sanguinary Guard in reserve, and they came in on different turns. Well, actually, both came in the same turn, but one scattered into impassable terrain and misshapped, luckily getting a 'delayed' result. Regardless, he dropped the squads right into the middle of my forces. While this is usually a good tactic for something like my Dreadnought in a Drop Pod, his melee-oriented squads were unable to assault, making them sitting ducks to my entire army's fire power.

And so, they didn't last more than a turn each. I explained to him after that - since they have jump packs - they could've deep struck behind some kind of cover that hid them (like a building wall), and then moved up to 12" and assaulted another 6" on his next turn.

It was a good game overall though. And he went down like a true trooper and not a sore loser.

4/19/2011

Sweet Dreams

Today will go down in my personal history as the first, and possibly only, time I have ever tabled someone. Not only did I table my opponent, but he fielded Chaos Marines - a faction I've always struggled to defeat.

Deployment.

Sniper squad Zodiac managed to wreck a Rhino!

Burn, heretics!

Enemy neutralized.

It was an annihilation match, too. The end score was 9-1. My only loss being my scout squad, which was massacred by my opponent's Chaos Lord.

I celebrated by buying some terrain pieces for my table. I hope to get started on them later tonight. Until next time!

4/13/2011

Throw Down

Last night's game was a fun one, against one of my favorite opponents: Rob and his Witch Hunters. It was great seeing him again, as he's rarely able to make it to games. Always a good time when he's there though.

Spearhead deployment.

Beautiful.

Highlights of the game were:
-Rob destroying my Dreadnought after it took out a chunk of his Battle Sisters.
-Saint Celestine assaulting my Chapter Master and retinue, inflicting only two casualties, and then Commander Shinra striking back and cutting her down. Adding insult to injury, she failed her leadership roll and was permanently removed from the game!

After all was said and done, it ended it a tie. I look forward to playing him again.

4/05/2011

For the Emperor

Tonight's game of 40K went much better than anticipated. It's been a while since I've won a match, and even longer since I've inflicted such a crushing defeat.

Deployment.

I only managed to take pictures of the deployment tonight. Not entirely sure why; I think it was because of how messy the table became shortly after starting.

Basically, there were five objectives on the table, and we ended at 3-1. Both of our lists were experimental and new, and only 1,500pts.

I'd never used a Rhino before, but I must say I definitely enjoy the shielding and mobility it provides to my infantry.

On the first turn, I fired my Predator at Jesse's Defiler, destroying its battle cannon and immobilizing it. On the second turn, I blew off its reaper autocannon. On the third turn, the walker got wrecked.

Tonight was the first time he had fielded a Greater Daemon too. It arrived early (second turn) and destroyed a Dreadnought and a Land Speeder.

His Daemon Prince and Abaddon, however, weren't as lucky. While the Daemon Prince did manage to take out my Chapter Master and retinue in melee, the rest of my forces tore through them with gunfire.

In truth, I had wiped out most of his forces. By turn five, an onlooker noted that "the table looks pretty red."

Overall, I'm quite happy with my tactics.