Tuesday, August 28, 2012

I Need An Air Brush and Tournaments This Saturday!

Well I have started to paint the Dark Eldar. I finally found a blue that is dark enough for my taste. Only trouble is its an old foundation paint, Necron Abyssal. So now I will begin the hunt to find pots of paint at local and not so local shops to make sure I can get enough. This also means I need to finally suck it up and buy an air brush. I made the mistake of assembling most of my vehicles a little to much. So as much as I like free handing everything, trying to get paint into the nooks and crannies of a Raider is really not feasible with a brush. This is especially true if I want the Raiders to look presentable. I would also like to add that I am lazy when it comes to painting so I need an express method of base coating.

That said I need an air brush. I have it narrowed down to two different brands of air brush. Iwata and Badger. I have seen the Badger airbrushes demonstrated at Adepticon and thought they were pretty nice. I have used a couple different Iwata brushes. The most recent one I have used is an Iwata Eclipse hp cs. Sadly this belongs to Samsquatch Monster and He is not keen on letting me borrow it to base an entire army. I have been looking through the Badger 100 series airbrushes.

So I am looking online and offline for starter kits from both companies and trying to find a good deal. So I ask you, my readers for advice and suggestions. I am trying to keep my cost down as I have limited funds at the moment.

I am also going to be picking up some Dust Warfare stuff hopefully this weekend. The Rulebook is a certain thing. The Dust Tactics Core set, Which includes a bunch of models, seems to be out of stock.  Fantasy Flight is doing a revised Core set that costs less but does not include as many models.  The counters and such are usable in Dust Warfare so I want to pick it up.  IF I find the first core set just sitting somewhere for a good price I may snag that.

 I have a 2000 point tournament to prepare for at Evolution games this Saturday. Its a dual force org with Forgeworld 40k approved units allowed. I will be rolling out the Eldar for this tourney. I may have to make some list changes though. It depends on if I can get the Storm Guardians built. This is dependent on the mount of close combat weapons I have floating around in the bits box.  

So for those interested in the Tournament,  its at Evolution Games in Lansing.  The dice roll at 12 and registration starts at 11.  Its $10 to play and Farseer Re-Rolls will be selling raffle tickets for a dollar for some prizes.  You get one for entering the tournament.  You also get to use them as a re-roll during the tournament.

I would also like to plug the Tournament on the same day at AFK Games in  South Lansing / Holt.  It is an 1850 point tournament with no fortifications allowed.  There will be 3 rounds and entry is $15.  Space is limited to 16 players.  Registration starts at 10 am and dice roll at 11.  So you have your choice of tournament this Saturday in Lansing.  Prepare 2 lists so if you choose AFK you can still make Evo's tournament if it fills up.  I will be at Evo running Dual Seers and an Avatar.......Giggity!

I will have more later in the week. The week has been quite hectic and I have been writing some more on Eldar tactics in 6th edition. I need more games though to really get a handle on what has been going through my mind.

Until next time................

Blood Runs, Anger Rises, Death Wakes, War Calls!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

That Fine Ass Dust: Seerk Tries Out Dust Warfare

Last night I was late getting to the FLGS thanks to that thing called a job. CVinton was at the shop playing one of the newbs when I arrived. The Store has been closing earlier than it normally does thanks to the guy they have working that day. Although I was not going to get a game of 40K in I knew I was going to try out something new to the area.

CVinton and Old School Terminator have been delving into the realm of Dust Warfare by Fantasy Flight Games. I am a fan of Fantasy Flights products and you may be familiar with them if you play the 40K RPGs Rogue Trader, Dark Heresy, Death Watch and Black Crusade. I am always intrigued by other war games, especially when they are done by ex GW game designers. In this case the lead designer on Dust Warfare is none other than Andy Chambers.

For those of you unfamiliar with Dust Warfare it is a War Game much the same as Warhammer 40K. It is derived from Dust Tactics which is a board game after a fashion. It is played on tiles that make up the game board. Dust Warfare is played on a table top like 40K. That is where the similarities end. The system is very easy to learn and has a lot of depth to it. There is no weird language and rules that are open to interpretation. This is a major thing that has plagued 40k for years. It would also seem that Fantasy Flight is much more in tune with its customers and is working to make the game easier to play and get into. The best example is that there are some characters for Dust Tactics, that you can use in Dust Warfare, that are currently only available in $60 expansion boxes that are meant for use with Dust Tactics. They are planing on releasing these characters in blisters for Warfare players. Can you see GW doing that with any of their products?

I digress though. The Game itself is set in the Historical era of World War 2. The key differences is that the German killed Hitler and there was a discovery of a strange alien power source. This lead to the development of new weapons, many outstripping our current technology, and Walkers. Having started my war gaming hobby in Battle Tech I was intrigued by the walkers. In the game you have currently 3 factions. The Allies, The Russians and of course The Germans.

After playing like 3 small introductory games with CVinton I am hooked. There is a lot of depth in tactics and rules that are very clear. The models are nice and come for the most part pre assembled and even pre primed and ready to paint. They can also be about a 1/3 the cost of GW models.

This gets em to how the products are sold. Squads are sold whole. As in you get a whole squad with nothing else to buy. CVinton gave the example of a command squad that had an alternate option to it and the 5 man squad came with a 6th guy that was equipped with the alternate option. It also didn't cost any more. The walkers and vehicles come with all the weapon options available to them. I would also point out that they actually have models out that don’t have rules. This is of course the opposite of what GW does. The book expansions, the Russian one to be exact, also has Allied and German units in it. Oh did I mention there are no codexes and all the rules for the Factions, with the exception of the Russians which is the first expansion for the game, is contained in the main rulebook which costs $30 bucks less than the 6th edition Rulebook. In fact I am pretty sure you can get Dust Tactics, which contains 2 legit and playable armies which are balanced, and the rule book for just slightly more than the 6th edition rulebook. If you split the tactics box with a friend you can have the rulebook and an Army to go with it for about the cost of just the Warhammer 40,000 6th edition rulebook.

As I am looking into this game and the products more it is blowing my mind. I have been abused by GW and their haphazard way of releasing products and so use to the abusive relationship they have with their customers that this all seems to good to be true. So look for some Dust articles as I progress with the game. I see some Germans in my future.

I have also gotten in one game with the new Footdar. The outcome was very promising. The Judges Grey Knights cried uncle after 4 turns. Very promising indeed. I am going to be testing them against CVintons Space Wolves soon. We will see if I can get a new streak going.

Until next time.........

Blood Runs, Anger Rises, Death Wakes, War Calls!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Changing Gears With The Craftworlders

6th Edition has been rough for me so far. The Dark Eldar are getting some wins, much needed wins as I am feeling pretty down trodden in the 40K arena. I am trying to salvage what I can when it comes to the Eldar. I am up to my eyes in Necrons, Imperial Guard and Space Marines. I find it funny that 6th edition was toted in many circles as being the Xenos edition. It is in part as the Necrons have probably the most powerful and adaptive codex currently followed by those tank junkies the Imperial Guard. The Tau are seeing improvement as the game has really turned into a shooting game. The speed of many armies has also increased, which has taken away some advantage the Eldar and especially the Dark Eldar have enjoyed. The tone is being set with 6th early with the starter set being composed of Dark Angels and The forces of Chaos. I don't say Chaos Marines because it would appear cultists make up a part of the army and with the allies rules in place you can run a proper Chaos army. True Daemons, Traitor Legions and frothing Cultists all in one force. Truly a sight to behold and one that has not been seen on the table in literally decades. I hear the call of the Great Enemy once again. Fulgrims sons will be gracing my hobby table very soon me thinks. Its been a while since I had the forces of Chaos in my hands. Its been 3 years since I sold off the last of my Legion. A legion I have had since 1996.

I digress though. The Eldar are fighting even harder to survive. I have been experimenting like crazy with different lists and unit combinations. So much so I think I have lost focus. I have been looking for a new combination or new tactic to give the Craftworlders an edge. The way units function has changed and as I am relearning them I am starting to realize it may be time to brush off some old tactics.

That said I have been running Footdar with a vengeance. I am going back to my themed Ulthwe lists and as fate would have it they are functioning better than my wonky and gimmicky new lists. Guardians supported by Aspect Warriors. Farseers and The Avatar of Khaine leading the forces of Ulthwe into battle. I have left the Warlocks on the bench. The points they suck up are better spent on keeping the list balanced. Building a list to take on the book missions is essential. If you ask any successful tournament player they will tell you building a list around the missions is how you win. This is the true take all comers list. Building a list to dominate the missions you are playing. Keeping the list balanced to maximize your ability to take objectives and deprive your opponent of the objectives, be it an actual objective or strait victory points, should be your only goal.

It seems like common sense. The concept is so basic that most people just roll their eyes and utter “dur I know!” The real issue is that most people don't get it. Look at the codexes that currently are really at the top of the game right now. Necrons and Imperial Guard. I will argue Grey Knights being in the top three despite what the internet is clinging to. Both of these codexes are built to be flexible. Although the Necron codex is obviously purpose built for 6th edition, it was still powerful in 5th. You have stout Troop choices with a variety of very effective, albeit kinda short ranged, fire power and real resiliency. You have support units that enhance the troops. Ghost Arks replenish Warrior squads. Lords on command barges sweep through the enemies ranks causing massive damage as its soulless legions march forward. Doom Scythes fly into he fray delivering Colombian like death squads into the enemies midst. You can bring the fight to your opponent while still being able to hold objectives.

The same is true for the Imperial Guard. You have hordes of scoring infantry squads with the fire power to fend off just about any opponent. There is overwhelming force and ability to play to the missions. Flexibility.

This is what I am doing with the Eldar. A minimum of 4 troop choices in every list is where I am starting. The Eldar have a decent amount of variety when it comes to Troop choices. I am going heavy on Guardians with Dire Avenger and Pathfinder support. Loading up on troops gets you objectives and it also meets the minimum requirements of using 2 force organization charts at 2000 points and above. If you have this built into your default list you can build on a firm base. Balance. Balance is the key to the game now.

I am going to role out the 1850 and 2000 point versions of my list this week sometime. There is a 2000 point tournament at Evolution games on September 1st. There is also a tournament at AFK games on the same day that is 1850 points. Decisions decisions. Regardless I am going to try and get back in the groove and rack up some wins with the Craftworlders. More on that as it happens.

Until next time..............

Blood Runs, Anger Rises, Death Wakes, War Calls!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

This Old House, I Mean Old: Eldar and Fortifications.

So as I get in more games I am exploring all the options at my disposal. A good Seer or Autarch looks at all possibilities before accepting or dismissing them. As I have found allies in my Craftworld armies dubious I have been looking at fortifications.

The rulebook gives us a few options. The Skysheild Landing pad, The Fortress of Redemption and The Aegis Defense Line.  Its a shame really the GW has never really produced xenos themed terrain. I am hoping this changes with the new rules. I am not holding my breath though. Currently with the exception of the Necrons, Xenos players are still getting the shaft. I will expand on that later this week, as I am here. To talk fortifications.

Ok so as I see it the only real cost effective fortification the Eldar can take is the Aegis Defense Line. Clocking in at 100 points with a quad gun its pretty cheap and gives units a nice cover save. Essentially you build a 1750 Eldar list and add in the Defense line.  You want to build your list maximized at 100 points less than your target total. So you build an optimized 1750 list if you are playing an 1850 point game. This is really why Skysheild pads and especially A fortress of Redemption is not a great addition to an Eldar list. They eat up to many points in an army that already has a points premium. The Skysheilds invulnerably save is nice, but its big and placement can be an issue.

The Aegis line can be put in and around terrain bolstering natural defenses. The Aegis can also be put around objectives, which basically allows you to ensure that and Rangers or Pathfinders you have can benefit from cover and hold an objective. Taking the Quad gun is so far the Eldars only real air defense save for Dark Kin allies.

Now this next bit may be FAQed in the near future, but as I read the rules the quad gun can benefit from a Fire Dragon or Dark Reaper Exarch manning it. Not only do you get the BS of 5, but you also get to use the Exarch powers. So your quad gun could deny cover and have tank hunter special rules applied to it. Or in the case of a Dar Reaper Exarch an extra shot. This also let's you benefit from precision shots when firing at units. I know it seems beardy, but hey The Eldar need everything they can get right now.

 I have not dismissed all the other fortifications, but I can't see myself using anything but a defense line with the Craftworlders. Now in larger games, those exceeding 2000 points, A fotress of redemption may be a nice anchor point for an army.  It has a lot of firepower and gives a couple units a very nice firebase to take out ranged targets.  I  don't see fortifications making it into any of  the Dark Eldar lists I am running,  as they seem very out of theme for the army. Also they are a major drag for points and army momentum. The Dark Kin are a raiding force and should be played as such.

 Well there's my two cents. I am sure most of the readership has been seeing the rumors coming out about GWs apparent release schdule. There are lots of new Eldar kits slated for the next year, including a new Codex. I see major changes on the horizon. Exodites, new Phoenix Lords, flyers oh my!  In fact GW seems to be actually supporting the new fortifications as the list I saw has several race specific fortifications.  The Craftworlders would seem to be getting a webway portal.  how it works or what it does remains to be seen.  If it is a new and improved version of the portable ones used by the Dark Kin, the possibilities that present themselves are tantalizing  The one thing on my list that did catch my eye in release list that got me excited and even a little nostalgic was the Harlequin Solitaire....... Good.  Very Good. Me likey.

The future looks bright.  I hope we can take hold of it and drive the Mon-Keigh to their knees and drive the Necrons back to their slumber.....for good.

Until next time....

 Blood Runs, Anger Rises, Death Wakes, War Calls!!!!!!