Sunday, October 15, 2017

Another Crack at 40K 8th


We had another crack at Warhammer 40,000 (8th Edition) on Saturday. I had hoped to write a fluff-filled reproof the desperate defence on Tractabon IV or a hopeless assault on  Fwick's World... But then things ended up running late and we started the game late and were playing with too many things with too many people who had not read any of the rules or their Indices and we ran out of time just after finishing the FIRST TURN?! So... I'm not going to bother with fluff... But here are a few pictures of how the game went.

We'd invited a friend of the kids over to play (we shall call him "General Beavis"). General Beavis is pretty excited about 40K and had been painting away at not one, but TWO armies for the last couple of years, but never really got to PLAY with them. His brother and dad both have armies, but neither are motivated enough or seem to be able to find the time to paint or play with their armies. So I invited General Beavis to come over hand play with us on Saturday and told him to pick one of his armies and bring anything he wanted that was painted - we'd have something to match it. What he ended upbringing was 71 Power Level of Necrons. Finnegan doesn't quite have enough Orks to match that so I rolled out with my Guaiacan Commandoes.

We took way too much time going over the rules and differences between 7th and 8th edition and then trying to figure out a scenario to play that wouldn't be too unbalanced for one side or the other (which was pretty much a hopeless endeavour in itself) and eventually settled on the "Meat Grinder" scenario - largely because the name and object (utterly destroy every last one of your foes!) was more appealing to 11-year-old boy than the "Ambush" scenario where the object is to escape and evade your foes!

FORCES

Elements of B Squadron, 4 Commando, 222nd Guaiacan Commando Regiment



Brigade Detachment +9 Command Points

HQ
1x Company Commander PL3 + Command Squad PL3 = PL 6
1x Lord Commissar PL 4
1x Primaris Psyker PL 2

Troops
6x Infantry Squad @3 = PL 18

Elites
2x Platoon Commander @PL 2 + 2 Command Squads @PL3 = PL 10
3x Special Weapons Squad @PL 2 = PL 6
1x Railing Squad -10 - PL 4
1x Ogryn Squad PL 5

Fast Attack
3x Scout Sentinel @2 = PL 6

Heavy Support
3x Heavy Weapon Squads @3 = PL9


Power Level 70
Command Points 12


Necrons under the Command of General Beavis and Tarzan the Invincible (or... something like that...) 

Patrol Detachment +0 Command Points

HQ
1x Tarzan the Infinite - HQ - PL 7
1x Overlord (General Beavis) - HQ - PL 7

Troops
1x Necron Warriors (10) - PL 6

Elites
1x Deathmarks (3) - PL5

Fast Attack
1x Canoptek Scarabs (3) - PL 2

Heavy Support
1x Monolith - PL 19
1x Annihilation Barge - PL 7

Flyer 
1x Doom Scythe - PL 10

Tranport
1x Ghost Ark  - PL 8

Power Level 71
Command Points 3 


Basically an almost entirely infantry force (126 infantry, to be precise, and 3 walkers) versus a bunch of high powered characters and vehicles. Kind of felt like I'd brought I knife to a tank fight...

SCENARIO

We played the Meat Grinder scenario straight out of the 40K 8th rulebook. 

The Necrons were attacking and got to drop a preliminary bombardment on the defending forces of the Astra Militarum. They also got the Sustained Assault rule - which means if any of their forces were destroyed, they would roll for them on their next turn and come back on. Not that that was all that useful or necessary as the Necrons just keep reanimating on their own anyway. 

The Necrons had a variable amount of turns 5-7 to utterly wipe out their opponents. If there was a single Astra Militarum soldier standing on the battlefield at the end of the last turn the Astra Militarum would call it a major victory and the Necrons would be defeated...!? There was no doubt my force was out gunned by a way more powerful force - but could they kill all of my guys fast enough!? 


DEPLOYMENT

I set up a PILE of markers to show where my 25 units were starting... 


Then the Necrons set up - General Beavis let Finnegan play half of his force (Tarzan the Impudent, the Deathmarks, the Scarabs, and the Annihilation Barge).


Then I revealed my force - The Girl decided to help me out and took control of the Scout Sentinels and the Ratling snipers. 


I really had no idea how to deal with this mess - I had kind of hoped to concentrate fire on the Monolith and snipe at the characters - hoping to damage the Monolith Enough damage would lower it's Movement and Ballistic Skill - making it less effective. Killing it would simply mean a new one comes back on the next turn (well... 50% chance of a replacement coming on each turn). I was also hoping to maybe draw them into the jungle and then unleash some Catachan Vicious Traps on them... 


PRELIMINARY BOMBARDMENT



BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! Starting to sound like the war poetry of Pte. S. Baldrick!) 

The preliminary bombardment took out 15% of my force! I lost a lascannon, the entire special weapon section armed with snipers, 2 members of the demolition team, BOTH platoon command sections - less one Heavy Flamer (but not the platoon commanders themselves - who are, in 8th edition, independent characters), and a few grunts from regular Infantry Sections.

The first time a platoon command team got hit I used a command point to used a scenario stratagem that would lower the number of mortal wounds cause from d6 to d3 - he still rolled a 6 and three of the four-man team were wiped out anyway, after that I didn't waste anymore command points on trying to save any of the. I suppose I could have had some of the guys in the rear that were hit got to ground (which also reduce the number of wounds taken). Ah well... 


TURN ONE

From the outset I knew there was NO WAY we were going to finish this game. we started two hours later than I'd intended and had a little over an hour to play before I needed to call it and get to work on some other stuff. 


the Necron leaders plot the DOOM OF HUMANITY!


The Necron force went first and on their turn they trundled forward and lit up the AM front line!

The Doom Scythe took out another lascannon and hit the Company command Squad (but they miraculously saved at hits!?) The Ghost Ark shot at an Infantry squad and knocked out half the squad. The Warriors shot up another infantry squad and knocked another 6 out of action. The Deathmarks shot up yet another infantry squad causing four casualties. The crew of the Annihilation Barge were apparently playing Candy Crush on their smartphones, because they couldn't hit a damned thing!? The Monolith wiped out another 7 infantry in various squads it targeted as well as causing a wound on the remaining lascannon team! 

Two squads lost another 4 due to morale roles (effectively finishing off two squads), a third squad WOULD have, but they were close enough to the Lord Commissar and so he shot one with his bolt pistol and the rest of the squad stayed put! 


On my turn this fellow, being the sole survivor of his unit, charged out in a suicidal attempt to get within 12" of the Annihilation Barge and unleashed a blast of supercharged plasma (risking self-immolation if he rolled a 1). Her rolled a pair of twos. I suppose at this point I should have used some command points to re-roll one (or both) of those... ah well.. 

I did use command points in the Psychic Phase. My Primaris Psyker tried to charge up a Smite on the Doom Scythe flying over head and rolled a 3 and a 1 - it's got a warp charge of 5 all I needed to do was re-roll that on and get ANYTHING BUT A ONE. I rolled another one... 

Between that wounded lascannon team and assorted surviving missile launchers we did cause 12 wounds on the Monolith... (and took out two neurone Warriors). I just could not roll.... The Mortar Squad fired three Heavy d6 weapons firing - I rolled 13 for the number of attacks I got to make (slightly better than average) hitting on 4+ I should have scored six hits... I got two...  neither wounded their target...

We had to call it at that point - we'd already gone way longer than I'd intended as I still needed to prepare and review some stuff for the role-playing game I was running in the evening. 

I do like the game better than the few games of 7th edition we played. So much stuff is streamlined, by comparison. It does still suffer from a lot of problems all editions have suffered from - long ponderous turns where one side moves and shoots and charges and fights with ALL of their stuff... (Okay there wasn't any charging and fighting in THIS game). And I feel the whole I-bring-my-stuff-and-you-bring-your stuff-and-let's-battle style of play leads has a sort of rock-paper-scissors situation where he brought his rock army and I've got a scissors army and pretty much no matter how you play it rock is always going to beat down scissors... 

I think it will go quicker when everyone has actually READ all the rules and knows what all of their stuff does. It was a mistake to play with such large forces while we're still (re)learning the game. We need to go back and do what we did with first game and play with 20-25 Power Level forces.  Although I'm not sure if Tarzan + Monolith versus Astra Militarum Infantry platoon is going to be any different (other than we might actually FINISH the game...). 

We'll have to get General Beavis to bring over his Tyranids - at least with that army he has a FEW more troops... 


Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I have another squad of Tallarn Special Weapons on the workbench along with the last Heavy Weapons Squad for the Guaiacan Commandoes. Expect pictures of those in the not-too-distant future. 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

40K More Astra Militarum Specialist Infantry


A few more Astra Militarum rolling off the paint desk...



Okay... I'll admit, I DID paint these Tallarn Infantrymen first... 


But it was to finish off a Special Weapon Squad including these snipers I finished on the weekend... 


I did, however, concurrently paint (okay, ALMOST concurrently...) (okay, I painted them AFTER - but I waited until they were done before posting pictures...) a pair of jungle-fighting mortar teams  - to add to the existing team to form a Heavy Weapon Squad armed with mortars. 

 I think the only thing I need to finish off to complete the completely reorganized for 8th Edition Guaiacan Commandoes are a pair of auto-cannon-armed heavy weapon teams! I should easily get those cranked out over the weekend.

I'd go paint them right now, but I need to prepare a couple of games for the weekend. I'm actually PLAYING with the Guaiacan Commandoes on Saturday. This will be their baptism of fire in 8th edition. Being a list based on fluff and not optimized for competition and facing a Necron army that's all characters and heavy support.... I expect them to be utterly annihilated. I think their only hope is that the Necrons can't kill them all fast enough to satisfy the victory conditions... Ah, well... we shall see. Stay tuned for the battle report.

I'm actually hoping to get in a few games of 40K this month. In November I think I might start a Shadow War: Armageddon campaign with the family and a few friends..


Coming Soon To Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

A GEN-U-INE miniature wargaming battle report - the Astra Militarum defends humanity against the deathless legions of the Necrons!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

40K Imperial Soldiers and Agents

I realized I haven't been updating the tally over to the left for some time - since I got the new computer and changed how I draft posts for this blog... Ah well...

I've been down with a cold since Wednesday so I haven't made much progress in painting toys, playing games, or rebuilding kitchens. In fact though we played at least one game every day in the month of September, we haven't played a single game this first week of October. Hopefully we'll get one in tomorrow. I also hope I'll get the pony wall in the kitchen built this week - assuming at some point I'm feeling more like a human and less like a festering, gurgling puddle of putrid shoggoth.

Here are a few things I DID manage to finish up over the last week....



Four Tallarn snipers - these are actually Cadian snipers that I simple converted by carving off part of their heads and adding the head scarves. I was thinking of fielding three in a Special Weapons Section and add the remaining one to the Company Command Section, but I think now I might just pick up another pack of them and field TWO Sniper Sections. I have no idea if this is useful in the game, but it seems to fit with the sneaky-beaky nature of Tallarn Desert Raiders...



Imperial Assassin. I actually had one of these miniatures waaaaaaaaay back, but was lost in one of the great purges (and I have been kicking myself ever since). I was picking up a few Catachan Heavy weapon teams off eBay and a seller happened to have one, so I picked it up. In the current 40K universe I think this guy would be called an Eversor Assassin - seems like they like to deal with stuff up close and personal - that huge gun thing he's carrying is a PISTOL!?

I also have an Inquisitor - that I have kept since waaaaaaaaay back and am currently repainting.

I wish I'd picked up Dark Heresy when it was still available in the FFG Black Friday sales... drat.



the Girl wanted to play a Psyker in the Only War campaign I'm planning to get going this month, so I went looking for a suitable girly-psyker figure and found one on Bad Squiddo Games website... and then realized I HAVE THAT FIGURE ALREADY!? Sure enough we received it as part of our Bones 3 rewards from Reaper Miniatures earlier this year - and I was utterly shocked when The Girl didn't even claim it for herself (she usually grabs everything that looks remotely female!)



To make her look the bit I thought I'd make the short cape look like a large bit of parchment, perhaps declaring her a GOOD PSYKER - NOT WITCH!



And here are some of the aforementioned Catachan (Guaiacan!) Heavy Weapon teams. With the 8th Edition re-org. I took most of the heavy weapons OUT of the command sections and formed them into Heavy Weapon Sections (to fill out the Heavy Support role). I have two more mortars and two more auto-cannons to finish up and then my Guaiacan Commandoes will be once again complete.

BARGAINING

Because the Tallarn are all flash and new and I'm super excited about painting them, I'm having a hard time motivating myself to finish up the Guaiacan Heavy Weapon teams - even though the rational thing would be to finish off the force that is so very, very close to being finished. So I've had to make a deal with myself - NO MORE TALLARN UNTIL I FINISH THE GUAIACAN HEAVY WEAPON TEAMS!! For that matter, I'm also not going to paint any Tallarn until I finish up the Space Hulk miniatures that have been sitting in a box lurking near my painting station for WAY TOO LONG!!!

Perhaps that's a bit Draconian... I'll just end up resenting myself and rebelling against my own authority and just painting whatever I want willy-nilly! So how about this... Finish the Guaiacan Heavy Weapon Teams, then paint a unit of Tallarn. Finish the Genestealers from the Space Hulk set (because they're half painted already), Then paint another unit of Tallarn. Finish all the damned terminators from the Space Hulk set - then I can go crazy and paint all the Tallarn I want...

Yeah, that might work...


Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Guaiacan Commando Heavy Weapon Teams!

Perhaps a game report -as I am getting anxious to put these guys all into the field!

Space Hulk miniatures!

Tallarn minis! I'm pretty excited to get painting the roughriders, but I want to add some kit to them - saddle bags, large water skins, etc...

Monday, October 2, 2017

Faustus Furius: 3000 at ToonCon 2017

Welcome to the underground world of illegal jet bike racing in the dusty streets of the outer colonies... This is one of the longest posts I've ever put up on my blog - so strap yourselves in and put on your helmet and dust goggles - it's a long ride to the finish!

This past weekend I attended ToonCon 2017. For a full report of the weekend and all the games I played check out the previous post:

Tim's ToonCon 2017 Report

This post, however, is focusing in on the event that I ran Saturday evening - Faustus Furius: 3000!

Now Faustus Furius, is "a fast and furious, tongue in cheek table-top racing game based very loosely around the chariot races of the ancient world and adaptable to any racing situation". For this event I adapted it for racing JET BIKES! Late last year, shortly after I picked up Faustus Furius, I backed Ramshackle Games Jet Bike construction Kit Kickstarter and have been assembling and painting jet bikes since they arrived in May.



There was a lot of terrain and miniatures to haul to the convention. I almost didn't get out of my front gate in the morning!



Upon the appointed hour, six people turned up to play FF3K (from left to right: Pat, Chris, James, John, Gary, and Morgan) - all fine gentlemen and a totally fun group of guys to race jet bikes with! I'd set the limit at 8, but was very happy with six. It was the first time I'd played with that many players and eight might have been just enough to bog the game down a bit...

Now I believe in thoroughly play-testing a game before unleashing it upon unsuspecting participants at a convention. But I think it was Sun Tzu that said "the best laid plans never survive first contact with convention participants..." or... something like that. 

The first player that went - I think it was James - really set the tone for the entire evening when he rolled his dice to see how many actions he had and before moving his bike asked "now, HOW do I attack another jet bike...?" I was quite surprised to see how very combative all the participants were throughout the game - not disappointed or anything, and there wasn't really any vicious maliciousness to it - it was all in the spirit of the game - but, like I was saying in the previous post, the people we meet at conventions have entirely different (not wrong, just very different) styles of plays than how we tend to play games at home. 

I DID manage to convince them that it was not really in their best interests to NOT attack others in the starting line-up as the victim of said attacks could very easily crash into their attacker - setting everyone back... 


So the first few shot out of the starting line-up. 


By the end of the first turn, pretty much everyone was still in a nice neat line... except Morgan, who tucked in behind the line...? Perhaps he was drafting?


The next turn Gary's Purple 37 shot out in front of the group. 


Others tried to follow, but Morgan went before the bikes in front of himself which meant he crashed into them from behind causing a short chain-reaction of collisions with Jame's and John's bikes. Morgan didn't actually crash, but spun out and ended up facing WRONG WAY! 


Pat's Grease Lightening pulled ahead, followed by Chris' ToonCon Express. Gary's bike seems to have veered off-course (I'm guessing someone attacked him and his bike spun out of control - hard to remember details of how exactly things went down early in the race - thank goodness I took so many pictures!) 


Morgan, John and James trying to get their jet bikes turned around and back in the race! 


Pat's Grease Lightening still in the lead followed by Chris' ToonCon Express. Gary's managed to turn his bike around and John is in the process of doing so... but it looks like Morgan collided with the camera crew and rolled another spin out - turning him around AGAIN!?


Looks like someone either incited (or angered) the mob and some rowdy fans poured out onto the track! 


Trying to sort out the chaos and confusion. 


Grease Lightening still in the lead as everyone else seems to be spinning out of control trying desperately to get back in the race. 


Grease Lightening rounding the first hill and James and Chris giving chase. Gary and John still trying to get back in the race and Morgan...?


 I think he's still back in the town... trying to get his bike started again...


ZWOOOOSH!!


Morgan's bike getting started. Very slowly. In the wrong direction. 


Pat's Grease Lightening almost half done his first lap! 


John's bike punching it, trying to get back into it. 


Okay, now THIS is starting to look like a jet bike race - everyone facing in the right direction and going forward! 


And then Morgan decided to say "Screw it" and cut the course in an attempt to get back in the game! 

Around this time James posted a live video of the action to Facebook...





Chris' ToonCon Express caught up to Pat's Grease Lightning... and crashed into him! Pats jet bike crashed and The ToonCon Express spun out!



James' bike then slipped through the carnage to take the lead! Meanwhile Morgan's bike was still slipping through the ruins on the edge of town to sneak back into the race.



Nothing to see here!



Pat got his bike up and running again quickly, but Chris couldn't seem to be able to bring his bike under control and went careening off towards the table edge!?



Pat would not suffer anyone taking the lead and promptly crashed into James bike!



John and Gary's bike trying to dodge around the wreckage of James and Pat's, while Chris' still heading out to towards the desert beyond the table...



John sneaks into the lead while Morgan comes out of the wilderness, Pat gets his bike going again, and Gary gives chase. It also looks like Chris managed to get his bike turned around and is heading back towards the race course.



All of a sudden it was looking like a race again...



...and then bikes were flying every which way attacking and trying to dodge each other. Morgan got turned around again after colliding with some a mob of unruly fans!



John making a very precise maneuver.



and then Chris decided to cut the course. Morgan trying to bring his bike about again while everyone else was steering their bikes back into town.



John's googly-eyed love bug in the lead as they return to the town.



My son Finnegan has been playing Small World and found it very difficult to concentrate on his game when he could hear us all laughing and shouting. As soon as he was done he rushed over to join us again.



You can also see John is wearing the medal representing "The People's Favourite" - rolling three successes grants you the title and allows you to dodge a single collision later in the game. While John held it for a while, Pat scooped it from him and made good use of it.



John's "Love Bug" still in the lead as they re-enter the town.



More collisions as the bikes got a bit bottle-necked at the edge of town.



Which gave John some time to steal ahead a bit.



John starting to build up his lead as the others try to sort themselves out.



Other bikes get going again as John nears the end of the first lap!



The bikes swoop through town to finish up their first lap. Morgan seems to be off course again...?



Morgan ended up having to leave so he parked his bike behind some buildings and dropped out of the race.



The rest of them just couldn't seem to get through town without a few more collisions and crashes.



Which gave John a pretty commanding lead.

Around this point Chris also parked his bike and dropped out as he had to take off.



I think at this point he actually started rolling less dice - so he couldn't possibly roll three failures and anger the mob and have them storm out onto the track in front of him!



Which ultimately slowed him some and allowed the others to slowly reel him in...



Halfway through his second lap and still way out ahead!



That couldn't last forever, however. Grease Lightning eventually caught up.



But John wasn't entirely above dirty tricks - he incited the mob to charge out onto the race course and block Grease Lightning!



And this is where Pat first made use of "The People's Favourite" and swooped straight on through the mob (which would have otherwise caused a collision).



And then he collided with John's bike... Pat's bike spun out and John's careened (or ricocheted?) to the right.



Gary had caught up by this point, but pat got his bike going again quickly and swooped back into the lead.





Somebody had thrown another mob in front of him, but for a second time he used "the People's Favourite" to swoop past his creeping fans!



Gary enraged the crowd... or... in this case some Riot Police...? I think they were trying to arrest him for a series of unpaid parking tickets in eleven systems...



Gary, not having the love of the crowd, just simply crashed into them.



Grease Lightning slipped past and into the lead again.



The others raced into the town to try and catch him!



Pat executed a death defying hard turn, narrowly avoiding a building and a couple of market stalls....



...and rocketed across the finish line for the win!



At this point I would have just called it, but the others were having so much fun and they wanted to fight it out for second place (or, First Loser, depending on how you want to look at it?)



Fighting for second place, of course, involved a few more collisions...



Jus two show off, Pat decided to start a victory lap. he started off by rolling three successes and, gaining "the People's Favourite" again, used it to swoop through another mob without crashing into any of them!



Gary's bike slipped out of the tangle of bikes in town and across the finish line second.



It seemed as if John was going to be third.



I think James decided if he couldn't be third, no one would and crashed into John's bike... and THAT's where I called it.

Congratulations to Pat and thanks to all that participated making a truly epic evening.

The game played really well. I think six should really be the upper limit for playing. Any more and there would have been a lot more waiting to go and the game would have been a lot longer (and there would have been a LOT MORE collisions). Things really sped up after Morgan and Chris dropped out.

Now... what to do for NEXT YEAR?!

If I run this again, I'll do a figure-eight loop for the course!