Thursday, December 30, 2010

On holiday break!

I'm in Sydney, Australia right now and my wife and I are getting ready for the New Year!  New Years is Sydney is going to be crazy, but it'll be a blast for sure.  I spent the last week in Auckland with my family and it was great seeing everyone.  Hope all is well for you guys.  Later!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

WM: Cygnar Tricks

This will be the first of many mini-articles that I'm putting out for Warmachine.  The purpose of these articles is to teach players all the "tricks" that each faction can put out.  Keep in mind that I'll only speak from the factions and warcasters that I have experience with.  By experience, I mean combat experience either on the table or in Vassal.  You won't find any theory hammer here.

Oh and yes, I'm also going to need your input on how I can format this better.  For now, I'll start with the warcasters and what kind of units you'll see with them.

Playstyle: Massive ranged damage.
Feat: The first time a model takes damage in his control area, it's at half armor.
Gimmick: The complete and utter destruction of the opposing army on feat turn.
Units: Defenders, Stormclad, Rangers

On feat turn, Siege and his army can wipe out an entire opposing army.  Every single model taking damage will be at half armor means that ATGM will be doing straight dice to Khador 'jacks.  A Stormclad will be hitting at dice +9 and each POW10 Electro-leap will be killing any infantry around him.  Ground Pounder will also do massive amounts of damage to infantry coming in range of Siege and on feat turn, it's going to absolutely destroy shield walls.  Due to Siege's fantastic assortment of spells, he can make Defenders do magical AOE3 shots and give his ranged army constant cover and immunity to blast damage.  Mage Sight reveals stealth and Foxhole can drop enemy 'jacks into a hole and open LoS to the enemy caster for ranged assassination.

Playstyle: Using spells to move units into advantageous positions.
Feat: She controls the order of activations of enemy models in her control range.  Those models effected have to forfeit their movement or combat action.
Gimmick: Jack Bullet or Bullet Jack.
Units: Defender, Stormclad, Stormblades, Lancer

eHaley has the ability to inflict massive damage to your opponents and then deny them any chance of retaliation.  Her Feat allows her to control the order of activations for your opponent's models and they have to either forfeit their movement or combat action.  That's absolutely huge; especially if nothing is in combat reach.  You can also use her feat to completely deny your opponent's chances of an assassination or successful jack kill.  With Telekensis and Temporal Acceleration, she can launch her Stormclad at her opponents with a threat range of 16" with Reach.  This is her ideal jack bullet and her other is the Defender.  By casting TA on the Defender and moving stuff around with TK, the Defender can claim a aiming bonus with two boosted shots at the enemy warcaster for an assassination.  Haley also likes to run with Stormblades because she has access to Deadeye and can increase their chances to hit dramatically.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Time for some feedback

Alright guys, it's been a while since I got this whole thing started.

Let's reflect all the things I've done this year:
  • Got my Space Marine section going; doing strategy, army lists and guides on C:SM, Blood Angels and Space Wolves.
  • Got my Warmachine section going; the same thing to my Cygnar and Retribution armies.
  • Got my High Elves and Dwarfs going; but don't have as much going for it as I would like.
  • Got my Dark Eldar section going; from start to finish and covering a lot of army lists and strategic analysis.
  • Joined a shit ton of blogging networks to get my blog out there and share my ideas with other bloggers world wide.
  • Lastly, I've obtained over 130k visits and frequent viewers from around the world.  I started this blog in March and worked like a crazy man all year.. so this I'm especially proud at.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

BR: 35pt eCaine vs. eFeora

Played a 35pt standard caster kill game vs. Patrick's Menoth tonight and it's the first time we've played in months.  He was fielding eFeora and I knew instantly this was going to be a tough game.  In this game, Caine doesn't have much to assassinate because of eFeora's Escort and placement, but you'll see that I do just fine.  This will be another game where target priority is more important than the caster kill.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Dark Eldar at 2000 pts

20 kp

Asdrubael Vect = 240
2x Haemonculi (VB, Liquidfier) = 130

9x Wyches (Raider NS, Hekatrix/Agonizer) = 190
9x Wyches (Raider NS, Hekatrix/Agonizer) = 190
9x Wracks (Raider NS, Acothyst/Agonizer) = 200
10x Wracks (Raider NS, Acothyst/VB, 2x Liquidfiers) = 205

3x Trueborn (Venom NS/2x SC, 3x Blaster) = 156
3x Trueborn (Venom NS/2x SC, 3x Blaster) = 156
3x Trueborn (Venom NS/2x SC, 3x Blaster) = 156

Ravager (NS/FF) = 125
Ravager (NS/FF) = 125
Ravager (NS/FF) = 125

Make sure you guys check out my article about my recent Dark Eldar experiences here.  It pretty much sums up everything that have experienced with Dark Eldar so far.  In addition, my friend Nick also showcased a lot of his units and what kind of success he's been having with them.

Friday, December 3, 2010

When ahead, stay ahead

This is a RTS philosophy that I've used, learned and experienced the hard way in many years of practice.  Typically in StarCraft, once you get ahead of your opponents in terms of economy and expansions, it's very easy to stay ahead as long as you control the money game.  If you kill one of his expansions with a push, you can take another expansion and you'll be infinitely be more ahead than he is.  Chances are that no matter what he does, you'll remain ahead for the rest of the game.  This is a mentality that I took with me to miniatures gaming.

BR: 35pt eCaine vs. pGaspy

OK, a quick BR on a 35pt game of WM I played last night.  It was standard caster kill format with my eCaine list vs. Chad's pGaspy.  This game showcases the options offered in a Cygnar list and all the different tools a player can use to his disposal when fielding eCaine.  Even though the assassination run didn't go as planned, careful target priority on feat turn can still make for a devastating turn.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Contemplating Grey Knights

Grey Knights were my first army and all this rumor stuff is getting me excited.  I want to be able to field a small and elite force with the best that the Imperium has to offer.  Because of the model count and my familiarity with the paint scheme of Grey Knights, I might be able to finally force myself to paint an entire army in a few sittings.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Things I still need to try

First, I'd like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving day in the US.  It's actually tomorrow but I'm not going to be here.  I'll be flying back to Jersey to celebrate with my family and friends so no more killing for a while (except for the Turkey).

So here's what I tried out in the codex so far:
  • Asdrubael Vect - Good if you can afford the points.  You're really paying for the 4+ to seize and the better Agonizer.  His blast weapon definitely rocks if you can hit a chunk of units with it.
  • Archon w/ the Huskblade, Soul Trap combo - Too many points to be worth it.
  • Archon w/ SF, Agonizer - Great use of points right here.
  • Succubus w/ Agonizer - Basically the same thing as the Archon, but cheaper points wise.  You basically take her if you can't afford the Archon listed above.
  • 10x Warriors w/ Blaster and Splinter Cannon - Great unit, a lot of anti-infantry shots and the Blaster shot from 18" makes it the DE's version of the Grey Hunter squad.
  • 10x Wyches w/ Agonizer and Blast Pistol - Great unit so far.  With the right combat drugs, you can tear a lot of things apart, even MEQ.  Vs. GEQ, you will tear them apart without an issue.
  • Wyches with Haywire Grenades - Not sure if they're worth the points yet because I plan on using Wyches for CC specialists and keeping things in combat.  Haywire Grenades is 20pts in the wrong direction but it does increase their versatility.
  • 4x Trueborn in a Raider - Great!  They're really useful because you can't ignore these guys if you're running mech.  I would definitely take them in a Venom if there's f'n models for these.
  • Ravagers - Absolutely worth it with Night Shields and Flicker Fields.  Adds a lot of firepower to your army and has the same slim profile as the Raider.  Great for working around LoS, gaining cover and opening optimal fire lanes.

Some more battle reps

Played 2 games today against Vanilla Marines.

I got two pictures with me today, one of the first game's end game and one of the second game's 1st turn (after I moved).  I bet you can tell which game worked out better for me:

First game had terrain that I can work with; play LoS games, use cover and use my superior speed as an advantage.

Second game had no such thing.  To make it worse, my opponent tailored slightly with a list that consisted of 3x Typhoon Speeders in separate FA slots, 2x TLAC Dreads, a AC/LC Predator and Hunter-Killer missiles on every single one of his vehicles.  I'll tell you right now this is the last time I'm playing on a map that looks like this.  It was a turkey shoot.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

DE Tactics: The Glass Cannon

Pictures are worth a thousand words.. even if it's a crappy MS Paint drawn one.

Rathstar asked in my tournament blog post:
Could you give more information on how you were able to fire at the Tau battlesuits while still getting cover from their return firepower. I suppose the raiders were just poking their front past a building, but how did the ravagers get cover while still firing all three weapons?

As a Dark Eldar, being able to inflict maximum damage while preserving your delicate units is vital.  Since DE is the premiere glass cannon army in the game, we're not supposed to be able to slug it out with the other races.  We must use our cunning, our guile and our superior intellect to triumph over our enemies.

Monday, November 22, 2010

DE: What are my troop options?

Based on the games I've played so far, I'm going to say that I absolutely need at least 5 troop units.  With MEQ armies, I don't feel comfortable playing without at least 30 scoring boots on the table.  For example, I always go with 3 squads of 10 full Grey Hunters for my Space Wolves and 3x10 ASM for my Blood Angels.  In the recent tournament that I played, the fact that a exploding Raider can kill half my dudes confirms my predictions.

For this reason, I don't see min squads of troops working.  Unless...

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The tournament results are in!

First, the list:

17 kp

Asdrubael Vect = 240
Succubus (Agonizer, Haywire) = 90

9x Wyches (Raider FF, Hekatrix/Agnoizer/BP) = 205
9x Wyches (Raider FF, Hekatrix/Agnoizer/BP) = 205
10x Warriors (Raider NS, Blaster, SC) = 185
10x Warriors (Raider NS, Blaster, SC) = 185
10x Warriors (Raider NS, Blaster, SC) = 185

4x Trueborn (Raider NS, 4x Blaster) = 178

Ravager (NS/FF) = 125
Ravager (NS/FF) = 125
Ravager (NS/FF) = 125

This is the list I eventually went with and I'm very satisfied with it.  Before I say anything else, let me outline the mission types that we played.

1st Round
Spearhead Deployment
Seize Ground 5 Objectives
At the beginning of turn 2 and 4, roll a scatter dice for 2d6 and replace the objectives (except for the middle one)
Nominate a HQ; killing that one gives you bonus points
You get bonus points if the HQ he nominates lives when the game is over

2nd Round
Pitched Battle
All HQ, MCs and Vehicles (including Dreads) are worth 3 points (Squadrons count as 1 choice)
All Troop choices (not including vehicles) are worth 2 points
All Elites, Heavies and Fast Attack are worth 1 point.
Killing double his kill points gives you a decisive victory.

3rd Round
Spearhead Deployment
Seize Ground (3 Objectives)
One objective is in the middle and each player places an objective in the quadrant to the left or right of him.
Capturing all the objectives gives you a decisive victory.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Kabal is finished

This is a full army view.

Totals up to:
3x 10x Warriors w/ Blaster and Splinter Cannon
3x 10x Wyches w/ Hekatrix w/ Agonizer and PGL
2x 7x Trueborn w/ 4x Blasters
1x Archon, built with Huskblade and Soul Trap
1x Duke, using the DE Lokir Felheart model
6x Raiders, using the Shark Fin sails
3x Ravagers, using the barbed thorns

Thursday, November 18, 2010

1850 Tournament this weekend

It's going to be quite sick.  I haven't played in a tournament for quite sometime because of this ridiculous OT.. but as of today, I'm done with that!  Not only is this going to be my first couple of games with Dark Eldar, but it's also going to be a tournament.  Hopefully my 4th Ed. Eldar-ish skills haven't worn out completely.

Here's the list I plan on using:

15 kp

Asdrubael Vect = 240
Succubus (Agonizer) = 85

9x Wyches (Raider FF/AS, Hekatrix/Agnoizer/PGL) = 205
9x Wyches (Raider FF/AS, Hekatrix/Agnoizer) = 195
10x Warriors (Raider NS, Blaster, SC) = 185
10x Warriors (Raider NS, Blaster, SC) = 185

5x Trueborn (Raider NS, 4x Blaster) = 190
5x Trueborn (Raider NS, 4x Blaster) = 190

Ravager (NS/FF) = 125
Ravager (NS/FF) = 125
Ravager (NS/FF) = 125

I will make another post Sunday or Monday night with the tournament results.  Tomorrow/Saturday night will consist of me putting together 3x Ravagers in preparation.  Go me!

PS - The picture has nothing to do with 40K, but the first person to tell me where that's from gets a cyber cookie.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

My Swarmlord Tyranids list

Here's the list:


Swarmlord = 280
+2x Tyrant Guard w/ Lash Whips = 130
Warrior Prime (BS/LW) = 95

10x Genestealers = 140
10x Genestealers = 140
14x Termagaunts = 70
14x Termagaunts = 70
+Trevigon (Catalyst, Onslaught) = 190

3x Raveners (Rending) = 105

2x Hive Guard = 100
2x Hive Guard = 100
2x Hive Guard = 100

Trygon Prime = 240
Trygon Prime = 240

Strategy, deployment and game plan:

  • Termagaunts form a wall of cover in 2 14x1 formations.
  • They will cover the Hive Guard who will in turn, cover the Swarmlord & Co.
  • The Warrior Prime will be moving from the Swarmlord's unit to absorb wounds with T5.
  • Genestealers will deploy in reserve and will outflank with the help from the Swarmlord.
  • A single Gene unit can also opt to deploy behind the Swarmlord and offer a strong counter-charge unit.
  • Trevigon will be behind the Hive Guard ~around the Swarmlord and generate more cover.
  • Catalyst will be cast on the Termagaunts giving the cover or be used on the Swarmlord's unit.
  • Raveners will be a distraction/harassment unit that will apply pressure on any long range guns.
  • Hive Guard will shoot at everything that needs to be shot and can-opened.
  • Tyrgons will be in reserve and will come in to apply pressure on the opponent's flanks or rear.
  • Hopefully things don't suck for me and I roll my opponents off the board.

Let me know what you guys think.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Summing up the IG Codex

The most realistic way to analyze IG from a competitive standpoint:

  • Cheap CCS with options to take Plasmas, Meltas
  • Colonel Straken with his ridiculous 12" bubble of Furious Charge and Counter-attack
  • Astropath for +1 reserves and re-rolls to outflank
  • Officer of the Fleet for -1 opponent reserves and re-roll his outflank
  • BS4 Veterans as troops with Plasmas, Meltas or Demo Packs (S8 AP2 large blast)
  • Dirt cheap HWTs and Guardsman that can be spammed
  • Dirt cheap Chimeras for AV12 everywhere for everything
  • Vendetta Gunships for 3 TLLC shots, fast, scouting, skimmer with transport options
  • Valkyrie does the same thing but has missiles
  • Psyker Battle Squad, full squad, 10 dudes, auto-rape morale
  • Marbo surprise rape with a demo pack, anywhere you want
  • Tanks, tanks and more tanks.  Tanks in squads too.
  • S8 AP3 large blast everywhere.  Eat shit marines.
  • Hydra Flaks for DE, Deathstrike for Rhinos and Basilisk for anything else.
  • All the competitive options are questionably priced (by that, I mean underpriced).
  • Everything else not mentioned is shit and need not apply.

Really makes you wonder what Robin Cruddace was smoking when he wrote the Tyranids codex.  He gave IG players everything they ever wanted to be competitive for years to come.  Good job, now everyone else has to catch up.

Also note that I'm not saying that IG are unstoppable or that they're overpowered.  They're just.. really good.. and this list is to show people why.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

DE vs. Mech IG and Tyranids

I don't normally take anything from Warseer seriously because most of that forum is filled with terribads and trigger happy mods.  Good thing that once in a while, I'll run across a thread or two that's actually worth a damn.

The topic of the day here is about footslogging IG being a problem for Dark Eldar.  Umm.. no.  I don't know how many times people have tried to talk across the table in 5th Ed. and have lost.  If you're not playing Castle Eldar or Horde Orks w/ Killakanz then I have no idea what you're doing outside of transports.  The only time I've seen Horde IG work was against 50/50 Blood Angels list because there's too many IG dudes to kill before they shoot you to death.  Seriously, one of the worst things to happen to assault units this edition is not being able to consolidate back into assault.  You know what, I really hope next edition features some kind of "overrun" option for assault troops winning combat.  In this edition, you almost always want to stay in combat so you don't get fucking shot in the face by Mech IG's 3 billion AP3/2 blast weapons before you can do anything heroic.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

How do you paint Dark Eldar?

I was thinking of something really simple and easy, but looks nice.  Definitely something table-top ready but nothing too competition like.  I just to be presented nicely on the table and to say I have a fully painted army.  I'm used to bright, awesome looking Grey Knights.. so this is pretty alien to me.

So here's what I was thinking:

1. GW Primer Black
2. Drybrush Liche Purple
3. Wash with Badab Black on the dark shaded areas
4. Highlight those surface edges with Liche Purple

I'm trying for a sinister looking, dark army with hints of purple.  Does anyone have experience doing such things?

What about that Leviathan Purple wash from GW.  Is that any good?

Sunday, November 7, 2010

ER: Wracks worth it?

ER = Email Response:

Hey there,

I was curious what your thoughts are on Wracks?  Do you plan on using them at all?  And how would you go about modelling them?  Haven't played 40k in a long while, but the new codex has me wanting to dust off all of my DE in the closet and stealing some souls.

The wracks look pretty beefy with a heamonculus with them.  Instant FNP/FC with double poison weapons.  Seem almost better than wyches, barring cover because of no plasma.

Also have you done any play testing or have any thoughts regarding the new talos/cronos. If I do go this Wracks route I could stick a webway on the heamonculus.

Just curious of your thoughts.



Saturday, November 6, 2010

And so it begins..

My Dark Eldar boxes have arrived and today begins the long trek of assembling them.  I don't believe in painting before playing anymore, so as soon as I get these boys assembled they're going to see never-ending bloodshed on the tabletop.  Here we go..

Friday, November 5, 2010

BR: 2K BA vs. Air Cav IG

I looked across the table in fear when Chris pulled out 2 Valks and 4 Vendettas...

2 objectives - one in mid, one on the far top left (from my side of the table)
Dawn of War - 1st round is night fighting.

My list:

Blood Angels Expeditionary Force
Mephiston = 250
10x ASM (PF/Infernus, 2x Meltaguns) = 250
10x ASM (PF/Infernus, 2x Meltaguns) = 250
10x ASM (PF/Infernus, 2x Meltaguns) = 250
2x Sanguinary Priest (JP, MB) = 160
Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145
Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145
Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145
Predator (AC/LC) = 135
Predator (AC/LC) = 135
Predator (AC/LC) = 135

Thank you Chris for supplying your army list!

Steel Legion Air Drop
CCS, Astro, OotF, 4x Plasma in Chimera
Vets 3x Melta in Vendetta, Heavy Bolters
PCS 4x Plasma in Valkyrie, MRP, 2x HBs
Infantry Melta in Vendetta, Heavy Bolters
Infantry Melta in Vendetta, Heavy Bolters
HWT Autocannons
HWT Missile Launcher
SWS 2 Flamer, Demo in Valkyrie, MRP, 2x HBs
SWS 2 Flamer, Demo in Chimera
2x Leman Russ, 2x Lascannons, HB Sponson

I was a little fuzzy on my DoW deployment rules but my opponent was a champ and refreshed my memory.  Dawn of War deployment kind of sucks and there's no way in hell I'm going to reserve vs. an IG list with an Astropath and Officer of the Fleet.  I win the roll to go first but I let him take first turn.  He chooses to hold everything in reserve while I keep everything off the board so I can roll up from the board edge when the game starts.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Revisiting Asdrubael Vect

I was brainstorming today on how my Dark Eldar lists will play out if I went for more Warriors over Wyches.  Sure, Wyches are nice, but how do they compare to Warriors overall?  Warriors have the ability to inflict a lot of wounds at range as opposed to close combat.  Wounding on 4+ vs. everything is better than S3 in close combat for the most part.  Sure, the 4++ invulnerable in close combat is nice from the Wyches, but at the end of the day, killing things for that fast FNP is a must.  Plus, Warriors can take more AT from range and have the option to go either Dark Lances or Splinter Cannons depending on role.

Then it came to me.. what if I take a list with Warriors, Trueborn and Vect.  Just Vect, no other character is needed, but I'll also take his Dais of Destruction for a lovely AV13/13/13 shell for a 9-model retinue.  Since Vect has to come with 9 other models, I decided to gear them for dedicated CC.  Here's what the list looks like:

14 kp

Asdrubael Vect = 240
+Dais = 200

9x Wyches (Hekatrix/Agnoizer/PGL) = 130
10x Warriors (Raider NS, Blaster, SC) = 185
10x Warriors (Raider NS, Blaster, SC) = 185
10x Warriors (Raider NS, Blaster, SC) = 185

10x Trueborn (Raider NS, 4x Blaster) = 250

Ravager (NS/FF) = 125
Ravager (NS/FF) = 125
Ravager (NS/FF) = 125

Monday, November 1, 2010

My 1750 BA, SW and DE

Blood Angels

11 kp

Librarian (JP) = 125

10x ASM (PF/Infernus, 2x Meltaguns) = 250
10x ASM (PF/Infernus, 2x Meltaguns) = 250
10x ASM (PF/Infernus, 2x Meltaguns) = 250

2x Sanguinary Priest (JP, 2x HFlamer) = 170

Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145
Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145
Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145

Predator (AC/LC) = 135
Predator (AC/LC) = 135

I could run Mephiston at this point level, but then I would only have 20 boots on the table.  I don't know about you guys, but I get really shaky when 2 groups of 10x ASM is all I have for scoring.  By dropping Meph and a AC/LC Predator, I can fit another squad of 10x ASM in there with the same melta-loving configuration as the other ones.  I find that to be a much safer option.  The 2x Sanguinary Priests on JPs will carry around some Hand Flamers and call it a day.  They're there only to spread the 6" bubble of FC/FNP love.  With 5 AV13 tanks on the table, I'll have plenty of shielding and cover against my enemies as I advance up the field in full speed.  The 11 kill points is also very low since I'm making my enemies work extra hard for each 10-man T4 3+ FNP unit kill.  As for psychic powers, I'll probably take Sanguine Sword and Shield of Sanguinius.  Unleash Rage can work as well since there's no such thing as overkill for Blood Angels.  At 2K, the Librarian disappears and Mep-shit-on you takes his place.  Add one extra AC/LC Pred and we're good to go.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A wide range of enemies

The best part about my gaming club is that there's a huge variety of players to play against.  I'm actually quite lucky to have a club of gamers that offers up so many practice scenarios.  When I get all my Dark Eldar kits next week, I know I'll have all the motivation I need to get the models assembled.  As much as I hate assembling endless amounts of models, I know that at the end of the day, I'll have plenty of opponents to sink my teeth into.

Here's what kind of players I have in my area and what kind of lists they take:

  • Mech Guard Steel Legion player
  • Eldar player that can play Seer Council, Jetbike, Mechdar and Castle Eldar
  • The same player also owns Thousand Sons and all kinds of Tyranids
  • Another Eldar player that plays Mechdar or Castle
  • Space Wolves player that takes a balanced list
  • Space Wolf player that likes TWC and Grey Hunters
  • The same player also plays Necrons.. but Necrons are bleh
  • Blood Angels player that plays balanced but can take all kinds of other lists
  • Ork player that can go hordes or Speed Freakz, the same player also has Ultras
  • Dark Angels player that can go Deathwing, Daemonhunters or normal Marines
  • A lot of Tyranid players that sports all kinds of lists and configurations
  • Lastly, I have enough Marines, BA, SW and Death Guard to lend out for practice

The list above is just players at my local gaming club.  I also live very close to the LA Bunker so I'll be able to get games there as well when I'm not at work.  The plan is to play against all of these lists and then BR back here so you guys know how my Dark Eldar are doing.  No tailoring allowed, I don't believe in sissy play.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Only the best will survive

I'm probably going to get thrashed for saying this; but I think Dark Eldar are going to be a master-class army.  I've read through the entire codex multiple times now and I'm convinced that only the best generals are going to have any success with them.  Dark Eldar, by design are going to be the hardest army to play in 40K.

Everything they have is paper thin and in this edition, paper thin is just dangerous.  Some say that Eldar is a delicate army to play but that's really just bullshit.  Eldar is actually one of the most durable races in the game.  They have access to 3+ re-rollable cover saves, Energy Shields on their transports and Holofields on their tanks.  T3 means very little when everything is well protected and taken care of with re-rolls or staying power.  Dark Eldar does not have this luxury.  Not at all.  They are built based on speed and precision.  Since there's no staying power at all; you have to make things happen in perfect unison or fall apart.  There's no sitting around and waiting for your opponents to make a mistake.  If you make a mistake in any of your phases, you will die.

Movement and positioning is absolutely critical for being successful as Dark Eldar.  You need to outrange your opponent's weapons, claim cover saves whenever you can, and know which units to move and which to commit.  How you move your units will be the only way you will keep them alive and keep them successful.  Two thirds There's no such thing as T4, 3+ armor saves or AV14 transports.  There's only AV10 open-top and a bunch of T3 girls wearing battle-thongs.  I know this more than anybody; I play Space Wolves, Blood Angels and Death Guard.

There is going to be a huge influx of Dark Eldar players, that I'm sure.  I'm also sure that most of these players will crash and burn and sell their models within a year.  I say this with confidence because that's exactly what happened years ago when Dark Eldar got their new book and players wanted to give them a whirl.  After getting stomped, beaten and destroyed by other armies, they jumped ship and went back to their boring MEQ.  How fitting that the weak get filtered out and only the most cunning, evil and arrogant remain.  Natural selection at its finest.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

BR: 1750 BA vs. CSM

Long table sides
6 objectives, terrain was medium

My list looked like the following:

11 kp

Mephiston = 250

10x ASM (PF/Infernus, 2x Meltaguns) = 250
10x ASM (PF/Infernus, 2x Meltaguns) = 250

2x Sanguinary Priest (JP, MB) = 160

Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145
Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145
Baal Predator (TLAC/HB) = 145

Predator (AC/LC) = 135
Predator (AC/LC) = 135
Predator (AC/LC) = 135

His army:

Chaos Lord of Slaneesh in TDA w/ Daemon Weapon
Flying DP of Nurgle
5x4 squads of Noise Marines with Blaster Masters
10x Khorne Berserkers in a Rhino w/ Fist and PP
5x Chaos Raptors w/ Meltaguns and Plasma Pistol
Possessed Vindicator
Chaos LR with CSM Termies w/ Fists, cbM
2x Chaos Dreads w/ Autocannons, Heavy Flamer

The problem with this list is how ridiculously few troops I have on the field.  If I wasn't a lazy bastard, I would probably have more ASM, but since I'm reluctant to build any, I just decided to field 20 of them.  In short, this is probably the worst case scenario for me since it was max objectives and he had loads of troops everywhere (Noise Marines) in min squads.

Monday, October 25, 2010

1750 Dark Royalty

I think this list will do solid in terms of competitive play.  First, you'll notice that I swapped out the combat Archon for Baron Sathonyx and a bunch of Hellions.  In terms of mobility, jump troops with shooting weapons are very good at picking away at the enemy.  I can dictate which combats I want to be in (a theme with Dark Eldar), shoot whatever is outside of transports and assault the leftovers.  By hugging as much cover as I can, I get 3+ cover all around on my Hellions and await for the rest of my army to pick away at my opponents.  I then use my Hellions to swoop in for the kill, obtain a PT for FNP and then get back into cover.

I see Hellions like vultures.  They are fantastic at picking away at lesser targets and since they're troops, they can score as well.  To correctly use these guys, you must hug as much cover as you can and set as many objectives in your back/mid field as possible.  Your hellions will be able to defend these while the rest of your army contests and captures his.  Don't be afraid to leave cover every now and then to obtain an easy Pain Token for your dudes.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

None will survive my cunning

Since list building is a hobby of mine, I can't help but notice all the different kinds of lists you can build from a well-written army book.  The Dark Eldar codex is a thing of beauty, really.  There's loads and loads of synergy between the units in the book and I find that to be extremely attractive.  I mean after all, variety is the spice of life!  If a codex supplies the player with a lot of options, he'll be more intrigued to try new things and buy more minis.  This is a good thing for the hobby.

So exactly what kind of units will Dark Eldar players take in their lists?  Let's take a look:

  • Combat Archon with his Kabal in Raiders
  • Min-maxed squads in Venoms, Trueborn with Blasters
  • Pirate themed army with the Duke
  • Wych-cult armies with Lelith and Wyches
  • Hellion themed army led by the Baron
  • First strike army based around Vect
  • Haemonculi based army with Wracks and Cronos

Every single one of those list components have their own strengths and weaknesses.  Not only do they compliment each other very well, but they can be mixed and matched with the other elements in the list to form really powerful armies!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Dark Eldar's Power Rating

My favorite aspect of this hobby is analyzing army potential and building army lists.  Some like to paint, some like to model, but I like the game for its core mechanics more than anything.  I am first and foremost a gamer.. and a competitive gamer at that.  Every time a new book comes out, I go into my LGS 3-4 times a week and analyze the book to its core.  I read, I ponder and I write a ton of articles to catalog my thoughts and keep track of my predictions.  I've been doing this for the last 10 years.

It's been a long time since I was wrong about a codex or army book.  Every single army book that I've done research on has fallen on the scale of what I predicted months ago.  I predicted the latest CSM book would be stale with very limited builds, Eldar will be good even past their 4th Ed. dominance and that the new IG will simply roll face.  Of course when I talked it over to my friends at the LGS, it was a little more analytical than that (more in lines of what you see here), but the overall gist of it has been the same.

Enough of the history lesson and ego-stroking, let's get down to business.  How would I rank the Dark Eldar book?  Let's see.  This is my first internet blogged entry for a successful prediction (even though I have evidence I said Tyranids would suck), so let's make it accurate.  I think Dark Eldar will have a army power rating of 7/10.  It will be on par with what Blood Angels are right now.  Of course, certain power builds will have a increased power rating, but overall I think they'll fall on the fairly average scale.  The book is very well balanced internally with a lot of acceptable and fair options.  Nothing stands out as wtf-broken and nothing is a auto-include from what I can see.  What puts Dark Eldar down is the fact that none of their troops can reliably hold objectives unless you take Wracks.  If you take Wracks as troops, then you must take Haemonculi and thus you go into this slippery slope of fixed army lists.  The mass array of AV10 open-top vehicles in this current metagame is also quite tricky since there's a lot more spammable armor now with heavy weapons.  Despite how well the book is balanced internally, external factors will limit its power.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

My 1750 list vs. the metagame

So I'm pretty satisfied with this list I'm building.  The theme of the army will be a mix between the Archon's Kabal and the Duke's horny drugged-up wyches.  That in itself is motive to go this army.


Archon (SF, Husk Blade, Drugs, Soul Trap, Haywire) = 150
Duke Sliscus the Serpent = 150

9x Warriors (Raider NS/AS/SR, Blaster) = 181
9x Wyches (Raider NS/AS, Hekatrix/Agnoizer, Shardnet) = 205
10x Wyches (Raider NS/AS, Hekatrix/Agnoizer, Shardnet) = 215
10x Wyches (Raider NS/AS, Hekatrix/Agnoizer, Shardnet) = 215

10x Trueborn (Raider NS/AS, 4x Blaster) = 255

Ravager (FF, NS) = 125
Ravager (FF, NS) = 125
Ravager (FF, NS) = 125

Like I said before, I find the Duke to be one of the best buys in the book.  To recap, the guy's 150 points and comes with a Shadow Field and Blast Pistol.  In addition to this, he gives the entire army Contraband that allows you to roll 2 dice for your combat drugs and pick one.  He also provides the entire army with the option to Deep Strike your Raiders, Venoms and Ravagers.  Sure, you might not want to do this, but the option being there is always a good thing.  Even though he's not as beastly in combat as the Archon, he can still wound things on 2+ and on 5 and 6s, he ignores armor saves.  Besides, he'll be riding shotgun in the Warrior squad with Splinter Racks.  This allows them to re-roll their poisoned shots and wound on 3s.  MCs beware.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Need more pain please

Took a nap earlier in the day and now I can't sleep.  That's OK, I have some thought provoking questions on the Haemonculi option in the DE book.  Well, for one, they cost something like 50 points per pop with the Ancient costing 80 instead.  They can be fielded in a 1-3 slot choice similarly like the BA Sanguinary Priests and they come with Pain Tokens to add to your army.  They can also carry Arcane Items that boost their effectiveness.

The thing about these guys is that they can be spread out everywhere in your army and provide your units with FNP.  That means the second these units kill something, they'll end up receiving Furious Charge.  I guess if you want these two right off the top, you can take a unit of Wracks that start with a Pain Token and take a Haemonculus in the unit for a cheap FNP/FC unit.  Personally, I'm a big Kabal/Wych fan so I'll probably stick to those even though FNP/FC Wracks are pretty deadly with their WS4, I4, 2 attacks each with Poisoned attacks.

So the question I have is:  Are Haemonculi worth it?  They're fragile as all hell, have below average combat stats (WS/BS4 for the Haemonculi and 5 for the Ancient) and act as ICs.  Sure, they have 2W and 3W a piece, but they die really easy when swung at for an easy KP.  Don't get me wrong, the FNP is great to have in any army, but is having him in a squad of Warriors or Wyches or something else really that needed?  On the first kill, regardless of whether you shot something to death or ripped its head off in melee, you get a Pain Token.  Would it be worth it just to have a Haemonculi in a unit for that extra FNP bonus at the start of the game?  A Warrior squad with 9 dudes can't take a Splinter Cannon or Dark Lance.  The same applies to a unit of Wyches since they miss out on their second special weapon.  The only reasonable unit I can see them accompanying (outside of Wracks of course) is a 9x squad of Trueborn with Blasters.  Give the Haemonculi a Liquidfier and call it a day.  In fact, how would you equip yours?  Another weapon layout can be Venom Blade (2+ to wound) and Animae Vitro (or something?) that turns each unsaved wound into a Pain Token.

Someone on another forum brought up the fact that you can take some Haemonculi with Incubi, an Archon and a unit of Wracks and play token games.  I guess if you like deploying on foot and miss out on an entire turn's worth of movement, this is cool, but the gist of it is this:  The Archon is in a unit of Wracks at the start of the game that has a Pain Token already attached.  He leaves the unit, taking the Pain Token with him and then join a unit of Incubi or something.  Since the Incubi already have FNP because of the Haemonculus, the Archon joining will give them FC.  On your second turn, you can drop the Haemonculus from the Incubi's unit and they can go ride a Raider into victory.  Will this work wonders?  I doubt it.  I'd much rather take a Raider with Aethersails and get these Incubi into charge position for turn 2.  Killing is my method of getting Pain Tokens, no matter how attractive (or unattractive) Haemonculi can be.

What do you guys think?  Haemonculi or gtfo or what?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Must-takes and configurations

I have a confession to make:  I am going Dark Eldar when they come out.  Not because I'm a band-wagoner thinking they're going to be amazing, but because I have "space elf" roots.  I used to be a Eldar player back in 4th Ed. and they were utterly ridiculous.  In a way, I feel cheated of my experience because they were so good.  That pissed me off, so I sold the army and picked up Space Wolves.  Now that Dark Eldar is here, I think it's time to feed my heart's dark side and mental perversions and just go for it.  I always wanted to play Dark Elves in Fantasy, and now I finally get that chance.. in space!  To be honest, I think Dark Eldar are going to be the perfect balance between deadliness and expertise.  Only the best generals will be able to win consistently and I personally see this as a skill test to myself.

So now the cat's out of the bag, I'm going to go through some must take units and weapon configurations.  Below is my updated unit bucket with units that I like.  Keep in mind that even though the units I like are normally based on cost effectiveness, I also like to preserve a certain theme.  For that reason, I'm missing Haemonculii and their furry friends in the list below.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Dark Eldar: First turn or lose?

So I ran into a pretty interesting conversation today with an experienced gamer on how Dark Eldar will play.  I can't say I was happy to hear what he had to say.  Hypothetically, Dark Eldar will be the strongest if they take first turn and get to apply pressure early on.  What if they don't?  If they don't or if someone manages to seize the initiative from you, then you've got yourself a serious problem.  Let's quickly examine some common lists we see on the table.

Take these 3 armies for example:

  • IG Mech list with Chimeras.
  • Space Wolf RB spam lists.
  • Blood Angels 3/3 Baals and AC/LC Preds

All of these armies are capable of putting out an incredible amount of shooting in their first turn.  Mech IG can shoot out of their hulls and their basic Chimeras can put a serious amount of hurt on AV10 open-top vehicles.  Space Wolf lists can put out 15 S8 rockets per turn and a obscene number of Lascannon/Plasma shots.  Then there's Blood Angels:  Their vehicles are Fast so their AC/LC Preds can move 6" and shoot everything and their Baals can also blow their load at 6-12".  In terms of firepower, these armies are no joke since their purpose is to deliver game-changing results with their first round of shooting.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Tough Dark Eldar decisions

So let's look at a couple of debates floating around the interwebz for what's the most cost effective option for Dark Eldar in a all-comers list.  When I build my lists, I always build for all-comers because I think the strongest list is also the most flexible.  I don't believe in list tailoring but I do believe adapting to your metagame.  There's no point taking the same crappy list, getting your face-rolled, understanding why you lost and what you need to do, but too stubborn to change.  That is doing it wrong.

Anyways, let's start with heavy support choices!  For simplicity sakes, let's talk about a direct comparison between two of the best choices for anti-armor.  In one corner, we have the Ravager and in the other corner, we have the Voidraven Bomber.  Here are some stats:

- The model kit is coming out in the near future.
- Has 3x S8 AP2 Lance weapons that can move 12" and shoot all.
- Can swap all its Dark Lances for Disentagrators for free.. so 9x S5 AP2 shots from each.
- Costs 105 points stock so it's 40 points cheaper than the Bomber stock.
- AV11/11/10 open-top, making it slightly less armored than the Voidraven.

Voidraven Bomber:
- No model at all.
- 2x S9 AP2 Lance Weapons that can move 12" and shoot all.
- Has a S9 AP2 Lance 3" blast mine but you can only drop it when moving 12".
- Can take some pretty killer missiles but further increases the cost of the bomber.
- AV11/11/10 closed top, so slightly more armored than the Ravager.
- Supersonic, can go flat out at 36".

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Asdrubal Vect: Worth it or not?

First, let's look at Vect's combat stats.  He's WS8, BS8, I8 with 4W, 5 attacks base and comes stock with a Shadow Field.  Not only that, but he has Preferred Enemy vs. everyone, re-rolls to wound vs. Eldar and Dark Eldar and have a power weapon that always wounds on a 3+.  For shooting, he has a cube that shoots out a S10 AP3 Assault 1 Blast from 12" and each wound it does restores his wounds.  The thing about this weapon is that for wounding purposes, the S10 is matched against the target's leadership.  That means it's utterly worthless against vehicles.

What is the best thing about Vect?  He gives Dark Eldar the ability to Seize the Initiative on a 4+.  Just in case you roll low and your opponent thinks he's going first, Vect makes you take away your opponent's first round of shooting and passes it onto you.  Not only that, but he he can take a AV13/13/13 Raider that's open-topped so he can load 9x Trueborns in there and have 4x Blasters.  The Dais of Destruction also comes with 3x Dark Lances.. but it's a damn shame that it can't move 12" and fire everything like a Ravager.  Oh well, it's still a pretty solid firing platform once you go flat out on turn 1 and plant it close to your opponents.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My 1850 Dark Eldar list

It's time to write out my Dark Eldar list.  I'm gearing it for 1850 points for now, but I'll most likely go back here and tweak it up to 2K in the future.  The thing about this list is that I'm not running Vect yet.  I probably will in the future because I think he can offer a lot of 1st turn potential.


Archon (SF, Husk Blade, Drugs, Soul Trap) = 145
Duke Sliscus the Serpent = 150

9x Warriors (Raider NS/SR, Blaster) = 176
9x Wyches (Raider AS, Hekatrix/Phantasm/Agnoizer, HG) = 205
10x Wyches (Raider AS, Hekatrix/Phantasm/Agnoizer, HG) = 215
10x Wyches (Raider AS, Hekatrix/Phantasm/Agnoizer, HG) = 215

10x Trueborn (Raider NS, 4x Blaster) = 250

Voidraven Bomber (FF, NS) = 165
Voidraven Bomber (FF, NS) = 165
Voidraven Bomber (FF, NS) = 165

The Archon here is the Archon I would take if I wanted something really killy.  The Husk Blade is a power weapon that causes Instant Death and with the help of the Duke's Contraband, I might get the drugs I want.  I see Duke as an auto-include in most lists simply because he offers a ridiculous amount of benefits to the army.  Notice the amount of Combat Drugs I have floating around - that's because Contraband allows everyone to roll two dice when selecting drugs instead of 1, and you get to pick which one to take.  Wyches just got hell of a lot scarier and re-rolls to wound with a Husk Blade is no joke.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

More Dark Eldar stuff

Alright, so I went into my LGS and spent a ridiculously good amount of time with the Dark Eldar book.  I basically barked and bit anyone who got close to me so all this info I'm about to tell you is pretty good.  First, I'd like to correct a few things from my previous post.  Well, not really correct, but to confirm on a few things:  Razorflails are indeed that, Shatterfield Missiles are the missiles that I liked and Flickerfields are what the 5++ invulnerable upgrade on vehicles are called.

So I didn't get to look too indepth into the FA choices last time I had the book, but this time, I analyzed them to the bone.  Out of all the FA choices, I'm only sold on Scourge.  They are Jump Troops and have ridiculous options for weapons.  At 22ppm, for every 5 models, 2 of them can replace their Shard Carbines with special weapons.  That means in a squad of 10, they can have 5 special weapons ranging from Splinter Cannons (yes, Cannons), Haywire Blasters, Heatlances, Blasters and Dark Lances.  Imagine a full squad of 10 running around with 4x Haywire Blasters or Heatlances messing around with vehicles.  Now imagine 10 with 4x Splinter Cannons pouring out a ridiculous amount of poison shots per squad.  Start the game with an attached Haemonculus with a Hexfire Rifle just so the squad can get FNP (along their 4+ save) and then run off to do his own thing.  With enough targets to saturate the field, these guys might actually get some field time.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

What's good in Dark Eldar

I know.. I haven't posted in forever.  If you worked as much as me you'd understand, but thank god most people don't have to.  Anyways, I finally managed to drag my ass into my LGS and check out the Dark Eldar codex in person.  I have to say; I'm impressed.

First, I have some notes I want to share with you.  Like most of you already know, my brain only works one way:  I go through a codex and point out what I consider to be the best, top tier, the most cost effective yata yata and discard the rest.  Well, I didn't get too much time with the book since there was a good number of people in there, but I do have what I consider to be the "gist" of it.  In short, the entire army is fast -- much faster than Blood Angels.  That's perfectly fine, I mean for god's sakes they're elves.  I can't imagine my High Elves being slower than Empire, hell no.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Dark Eldar and some updates

So Dark Eldar is coming..

The metagame right now is basically Space Wolves, IG, a few Eldar lists here and there, some Orks and Blood Angels.  Now I don't know how to say this without just saying this, but it looks like that Dark Eldar are going to shit all over MEQ.  For BA, I can see us taking the standard 3/3 Baal/ACLC Pred to counter the threat of long range triple Dark Lances on the move, and Space Wolf players just shoot RBs all day.  3x groups of 6 Long Fangs with 5x ML and 3x RBs with TLLCs is going to crap all over DE vehicles.  That and the fact that Rune Priests with Living Lightning will have a field day with Split Fire.  Never, ever, ever go MSU and 5-man bodies.  You're too easily destroyed by Dark Eldar and that only fuels their combat drugs.

The only problem I'm seeing here is the DE close combat.  They get Harlequins and Wyches are going to rape some face when they get in close combat.    Marines, even Blood Angels and Space Wolves who are some of the most powerful CC armies right now, can't really hold up to DE CC.  Yes, we get FNP and 3+ AS as Blood Angels, but with enough wounds, rending and combat drugs, things are looking bad for you.  You know what that means right?  Shoot the shit out for their AV-craptastic, open-top vehicles and murder everything with rapid fire Bolters.  I would rather get out of my vehicles and shoot everything to death to minimize on CC death later than getting into CC with Dark Eldar.  NEVER, get into CC with Dark Eldar and expect good things.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Article: Do or Die Scenarios are Bad

Here's a teaser of an article I wrote recently for Bell of Lost Souls:

Warmachine is a game where if you play carelessly with your warcaster, you can lose the game immediately.  When I read battle reports from other players, I shake my head every time I read the dreaded "do or die" scenario.  What does this scenario mean?  It means that if you don't do something big this turn, you will lose the game.  It's literally do or die.  This is exactly the type of scenario that you should avoid.

Recently, I read a battle report where someone got himself in close proximity to pButcher.  He was trying to pull off a kill on pButcher but when all things failed, he figured his warcaster should go try!  Now I don't know about you guys, but I can't fathom why you would ever get anywhere near a MAT9 Reach POW16 Weapon Master.  To make matters worse, you're not running eEiryss and the Butcher is camping focus with Iron Flesh on himself.  For those of you that are not familiar with Warmachine, pButcher is a slaughterhouse on two legs.  He's the size of most armies' light 'jacks and his melee swings as strong as most heavies.  Under no circumstance you should ever be near him unless you're prepared.  If you're running a melee beast warcaster yourself, you still might want to invest in another strategy since going up against Butcher with camped focus and buffs is going to be tough.  If you're ranged or a spellcaster and you're going for it, you're doing it wrong.

You can find the rest here.

Monday, September 20, 2010

League of Legends

You guys are probably wondering what the hell have I been doing lately.  Well, I'm playing League of Legends and trying not to suck at it.  I mean, I don't really suck at it.. I'm just trying to get wtf gosu pro.  It's a little different than DotA for those who's played it, and the RPG elements of it makes it something really unique.  The biggest thing for me is that it's a new game with a lot of new things for me to learn, and I dig that kind of stuff.

I'm currently experimenting with ranged carries since that's what I enjoyed playing back in DotA.  My favorites right now is Miss Fortune, Ashe and Annie.  I haven't really gotten a foothold on Annie yet.. and I'm going to try playing with Ryze today.  For those who are unfamiliar with the game, my characters can be broken up into 3 categories.  Miss Fortune, is a character who is ranged, does physical damage and is considered a carry.  A carry is basically any character who can make a lot of money (therefore getting uber items) and have deal enough damage to rape the other team.  Annie, for example, is a ranged, spellcaster carry.

I play carries because I like blowing things up for big damage and dominating people.  Tanks, healers and support classes need not apply.

PS - This game is free to play.

Monday, September 13, 2010

My Tier2 Rahn list

Cygnar is a great faction and I love playing with them, but sometimes you just need something different!  That's why I chose Retribution as my second army.  Nobody around here really plays them, no one understands them and the rarity of the faction is what really appealed to me.  Just because no one really plays them (there's like 5 Cygnar players here) doesn't mean they're bad.  In fact, I find Retribution to be one of the trickiest factions to play against.  They have strong shooting in the form of Invictors and MHSF, powerful melee thanks to Sentinels and Halberdiers, and ridiculous manipulation in the form of Battle Mages (mittens).

Sunday, September 12, 2010

BR: 35pt Siege vs. eGaspy

The battle begins with a map with a fair share of terrain.  This battle highlights the importance of utilizing knockdown and positioning so Breach turn can inflict the most damage.  By destroying and severely crippling my opponent's warjacks, I can stay ahead in the attrition game and deliver game-winning results.  The guy with the last warjack is always ahead.

My list looks like this:

Points: 35
Major Markus 'Siege' Brisbane (*5pts)
* Defender (9pts)
* Defender (9pts)
* Ol' Rowdy (9pts)
* Squire (2pts)
Black 13th Gun Mage Strike Team (4pts)
Captain Arlan Strangewayes (2pts)
Eiryss, Angel of Retribution (3pts)
Reinholdt, Gobber Speculator (1pts)
Stormsmith Stormcaller (1pts)