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Thursday, 10 November 2011

Send in the Warriors

I'm just back from my first game with 5th Edition Necrons (or should I say 6th Edition?), and I'm totally convinced that this is a fun army to play.

The game was 6000 points each side, Necrons took on Grey Knights, Space Marines and Chaos Space Marines in an Annihilate mission. I don't think a single turn went by without some special rule or another ruining our opponents' plans, and by the end of turn 4 the Necrons were ahead 14 kill points to 7.

Because all three of us with Necron armies were building on forces we already had there was in excess of 100 Necron Warriors on the table. I was the only one to put Crypteks (or any Royal Court members, for that matter) into mine, but was glad of it. The combination of Transmogrification Crypteks and a Writhing Worldscape C'tan is absolutely phenomenal. I spent a good part of the game taking pot-shots at a unit of 20 Khorne Bezerkers, killing a couple of guys to dangerous terrain each turn, and even took a wound off of Abaddon when his unit of Terminators was forced to test.

One of the Necron armys included Imotekh, and his night fighting rule meant we could engage the enemy right at the range we wanted. The extra chances for lightning strikes in a game this size helped out too!

Most Necron units are still vulnerable to combat though, as you would expect. I managed to avoid this for the most part, but several squads of Warriors further down the table were removed in the assault phases. Fortunately the new codex has tricks and units that meant we were almost always in a position to offer some kind of counter-attack in our own turn, typically wiping out the offending unit.

And let's talk about Deathmarks briefly. Mine spent the first few turns hanging back, as I didn't want to be over-eager and throw them away just for one round of shooting. Instead they waited until the enemy reached our line, then combined Veil of Darkness, Hunters from Hyperspace, and some rending that I was reminded of to really tear into a unit of Terminators. The next turn they were able to use the same trick to warp half way across the field and hit a different terminator unit.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Pimp My Codex

Well the Necron codex hasn't been out long enough to break properly, but here's my first attempt at a 2000pt list.

Necron Overlord - Weave, Phase Shifter, Res Orb, Scarabs, Warscythe

Necron Lord 1 - Weave, Phase Shifter, Warscythe, Scarabs
Necron Lord 2 - Weave, Phase Shifter, Warscythe, Scarabs
Cryptek - Eternity, Chronometron

C’tan - Writhing World, Grand Illusion

Cryptek - Despair, Veil of Darkness
10 Deathmarks

Cryptek - Transmogrification
10 Necron Warriors

Cryptek - Transmogrification
10 Necron Warriors

Cryptek - Transmogrification
10 Necron Warriors

5 Scarabs

4 Destroyers


Canoptek Spyder - Fabricator Claw, Particle Beamer

1995 pts

And here's why I think it's going to be fun;

Writhing Worldscape
The C'tan ability Writhing Worldscape levels up the effect of difficult terrain on enemy units. This is welcome enough, as I'd be hoping to hide my units in cover most of the time anyway, but once you add a few Crypteks to the mix it becomes a lot of fun. See, the Tremorstave that comes with Transmogrification Crypteks forces hit units to act as if they're in difficult terrain. And the C'tan upgrades this to dangerous terrain. Not only do I slow them down, but my opponent is now removing models in his own turn, which is something everyone hates to do.

Hunters from Hyperspace
This one's a bit nasty, and I do wonder if it'll be FAQ'd out of existence. When a unit of Deathmarks deploys they place a targeting marker next to an enemy unit on the table. That targeting marker means any Deathmarks have a hugely improved chance to wound that unit. Now adding a Cryptek to the unit means that they can't deploy by deep strike any more, but will still place their targeting marker if you deploy second. Then the C'tan's Grand Illusion lets you deploy the Deathmarks a second time, targeting an additional unit. Then Veil of Darkness to deep strike every turn, targeting another unit each time. You should always be able to wound any unit you're after now!

So that's my earliest attempt to break Codex: Necrons. I should be giving this list (or something quite like it) a test on Thursday, so will let you all know how it goes.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

We'll Be Back!

What better time to get back to blogging than with the release of the new Necrons?

Necrons were the first army I played, back when they had an army list in White Dwarf and a handful of metal models. A brief check online tells me that was all the way back in 1998, which actually scares me a bit.

Apart from that first little foray I didn't go back anywhere near Necrons until recently. About a year ago I bought some second hand Necrons from a friend, planning on starting a robotic horde of my own. With the rumours approaching I added a Monolith to the list, bringing me up to 1500 points, and left it at that.

Despite the old codex Necrons had some fun tricks, most of which I picked up from reading Fritz40k's blog. Now with a 5th Edition codex several of the clever bits of wargear used for these tactics is changed, so the race is on to find the new combos. And from a brief flick through the codex I've already spotted one or two ideas that I'm looking forward to testing.

So, without much further ado I'm away to read my new codex and work on my army list. After all, I've got a galaxy to conquer.

Friday, 7 January 2011

Horus Heresy board game

The advantage of having a girlfriend who's a bit of a geek herself is that she's really good at choosing presents. That meant that on Christmas day I opened a copy of Fantasy Flight's Horus Heresy board game.

First impression was that this is a big game. A hefty box, and most of the space inside is used. There's a large board with a map of the area surrounding the Imperial Palace, plastic fortifications for the map, decks of cards and of course a hefty bundle of plastic models.

So box in hand I went along the the club last night with a game lined up. We got the board set up, and mighty impressive it looks too. A few fortifications and areas of the Imperial Palace could barely hold the number of troops they needed, but we managed to squeeze them all in. Rather than drawing side randomly we settled on me playing Traitor while my opponenet took the Loyalists.

Since no one had played it before it was a bit slow to get going, not helped by my head being full of the cold, but we managed to get through the opening phases reasonably easily. Traitors had what look to be fairly average results on both betrayal and bombardment, weakening the Loyalist hold on the outer areas of the board.

While the setup phase was pretty straight forward it took a bit of reading and re-reading sections of the rules to figure out how the core gameplay works. This was particularly the case because Traitor betrayal led to a few battles of coexistance straight off, so we were plunged straight into combat. In one area to the west of the board Traitors outnumbered Loyalists and quickly wiped them out, but over to the east it was a closer match, and both sides struggled to do any damage.

Traitor first turn brought some reinforcements in to one of the spaceports, then the Loyalists took over and decided to try for a decisive strike against Horus himself! The Emperor and his Custodes teleported up to the Vengeful Spirit where they made quick work of the cultists and demons there. Traitors were taken aback by a bold move like this, but with no way to get any reinforcements the Warmaster would have to fend for himself. Meanwhile Mortarion led his Death Guard against the walls of the Imperial Palace, where the Imperial Fists did what Imperial Fists do best - run scared!

To the south two Loyalist titans backed by tanks, White Scar space marines and the Fabricator General attacked Angron and his troops holding the spaceport. However the Traitor forces managed to hold off the Loyalists, and a good draw of combat cards pushed the Imperial initiative marker several spaces ahead allowing the Traitors some breathing room.

At the same time the Emperor was pushing further into the Vengeful Spirit, now attacking the bridge. This time the combat cards seemed to be favouring the Emperor, pushing Horus about half way up the damage track. However while the Warmaster was suffering his troops were fighting strong, and had soon wiped out the Custodes. The combat ended with the Emperor alone against Horus and his troops.

With plenty of initiative to play around with the Traitors carried out four seperate drop pod attacks, focussed mainly on taking and holding the spaceports. However this wasn't much more than a formality as the battle on the Vengeful Spirit was soon over. The Emperor was dead, Horus had triumphed and all that was left was to mop up the remaining Loyalists.

All in all a good fun game. We messed up on a few different things, and probably missed a lot out, but by the end of the game we were getting the hang of the rules and things were moving more quickly. What I've seen so far impressed me, and I'm looking forward to playing some more of this game in future.