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Month: March 2011

The R0ot of All Evil Vol. 10 (Retcon/Vatiretcon)

* Shed a tear folks as this is the last R0ot of All Evil written for the foreseeable future *


I better suit up for this event, since we are in the D Even numbers for the weekend. I don’t know if they’ll let my culchie kind in here to be honest. I managed to pass the posh check and I’m in the venue …. before anyone else. So we are waiting for the venue to open and get ready to go. Since the organizer is chilling in bed it’s up to me to provide the refreshments here. Tea and coffee from me yo!

Jesus lads you know the whole thing about best foot forward? Start the way you plan to do the whole damn event, quite a later start than planned which is going to come back to haunt you (it will you know, see later at 6). Awesome first game I get raped so bad I think I might apply for counselling.

Awesome now I get to see where I am and how everyone else did…. oh wait no I don’t. Where the feck are the scores lads? It’s all well and good telling me what table I’m on and playing next but how am I going to know my score and my opponents scores are correct and the match is correct? Telepathy? Tarot cards? No…. a fecking list of everybody’s scores! Right maybe it’s just a hiccup, let us move on.

So our third game comes round and I’m setting up to play my old friend Ulick the Slayer* (please read the sarcasm here) when suddenly we are told to wait and not continue just yet, scores might be entered wrong (see earlier NO ROUND SCORES DISPLAYED gripe), 10 minutes later and we are now quite late into the day, don’t worry I’m getting somewhere with this. So we are almost finished our game and over the intercom comes a voice saying along the lines of ‘Place closing at 6 (20 mins away) get the feck out’ … well isn’t that fantastic we are late into 2 games and now we are getting pushed to finish 2 hours into game time.

Day 2 ah hopefully all the issues are ironed out and oh yes they finally have the standings listed on the big screen hurrah but no that’s not light at the end of the tunnel… it’s…. another …. delay and on top of this just wait…. the tables are assigned wrong but not wait there’s more the tables were wrong TWICE?! Okay okay it’s fine now 3rd times a charm, yes you can play yay!

As the 5th game ends, 4 of which were objective games…. yes I said 4 games of objectives. 4 objective games (pre-determined) in a 5 round tournament is a just a tad bit frustrating lads so either randomize the mission choices or have 2 KP games because otherwise I’m brining horde orcs k thanks bye!

Oh before I forget, TERRAIN more of it please, I played on some tables that I think the wrecks of my vehicles created more line of site blocking terrain that was on the table!

Right I am leaving the scores until last as I have a whole load to say after that bile I’ve spilled above.

So I’ll start with a big thank you to Tristram, Trget, Baz, Brian, Padraic (I can’t spell your name man) anyone I am forgetting that helped set up and run this tournament as it was top class and I had an awesome time!

Right so I stood up and provided the Tea, coffee and milk (you’re welcome Eoin!) for this event and thank you to John for the hot water dispensers saves the kettle usage. From what I saw the water ran out at the end of Day 2, so sorry for whoever didn’t get that last cup of tea/coffee as I was busy lucking out with my hero rhino against some thunder wolf cavalry.

Day 1 has a few hiccups there and Trget while I have a massive amount of respect and appreciation for you and your patience/work at Retcon please use the ETC scoring program and not your own until it works without any other assistance necessary. Yes it’s fantastic and does things like table display great but there was just too many issues that came up and while I understand it wasn’t the programs fault in this case the ETC one wouldn’t have ran into these issues. So the R0ot seal of approval shall not be awarded to the program used at Retcon, in fact I would have preferred excel.

The score sheets were nice (hopefully you have some mention of Johnny somewhere as they were quite similar, read as the same minus the picture at the front) and it’s a good move that I’d recommend to all tournaments in the future as I’ve mentioned before because not only do you have a reliable hard copy of the scores but you have a nice bit of memories for each gamer to retain (I still have my DDII one).

Oh man, the prizes! Well done here lads the trophies were stunning + a box set (thank you to Gamers World’s Martin and the Arkham crew for these, correct me if I am wrong here) and of course the spot prizes although I didn’t see any for game 5 and I’m pretty sure game 4 didn’t have any either. It’s nice to note similarities that are good popping up in other tournaments around the country as it’s moving as all to an almost Standard format!

A huge Thank You to all my opponents over the course of the weekend, Phil, Eoin, Ulick, Peter and Phil (again) you were all great fun to play and win/lose against and very few rules issues came up. (REMEMBER THE POWERS ULICK!)

Right the rules pack…. It was good, the painting scores while I don’t like them were properly enforced so fair play there. Personally again the 4 objective games out of 5 seemed a bit much but at the end of the day it was all still very fun and good to at least try something new. The terrain and tables were of very high quality as well as the venue so congrats there just try and get all the tables to the same degree of excellence as there were 1-2 that could be absolute death traps to whoever went second in games i.e. no area terrain around.

Last but not least the price was just magic, fantastically low and the local shops/café’s were decent quality for a good price so you get a gold star for all this even though some of it is out of your control. To the retcon organizers I thank you from the bottom of my hear (and wallet) for the price that was the same for everything, no discrimination of wargamers here!

Once again this was a fantastic event and while the score is lower than others I’ll say you did well and if you take anything from this review on board remember this, transparency is key. Display the scores being input, display the scores for each round, display the standings and remember there is a no fuss no mess program available for this just a click away.

Congrats to John Stowe for winning Retcon with Space Wolves!

Opponents 5/5
Venue 5/5
Food 3/5
Rules Pack 5*/5
Terrain/Tables 4*/5
Organization 3*/5
Prizes 5/5
Value for Money 5/5

Overall 17/20

A score of 52/60 which should ultimately been higher but repeat delays/redo’s caused a fair bit of frustration but overall it was a great event.

Next Up: There will be no more R0ot of All Evil’s written by myself apart from my summary of all events coming soon™ but we will hopefully have a special guest review for the Irish masters in under 2 weeks time!

Thank you to everyone that has taken the time to read the last 10 reviews of mine and I hope you enjoyed reading them as I enjoyed attending the events and writing about them.

Rankings Updated


And the Irish tournament season draws to a close with Retcon in UCD this weekend. Here are the final standings on RHQ hot off the presses.

Many congratulations to the top 20 players! It was the hardest fought year since 40k started being played competitively in Ireland and it’s great to see such close competitive play!

What does this mean for the ETC team selection? Well, the Captain (Richard Flood of Cork) now offers places to the players and they state if they want to be on the team. So watch closely and we should hear whom they are soon.

J

The R0ot of All Evil Vol. 9 (Itzacon 2011)

* A rather fine run tournament last weekend and apologies for the late post *

Well well well, Mr. Craig I see we meet again as you’ve decided to give running another tournament a go (see Gaelcon ROFE).

So here I am stuck in a car with nordies and DGGers…. this should be an interesting trip. So after a long and eventful journey, thanks for eating those beans Rowan!, we settle in for a few pints and the lads attempt to poison me with beer, instead of cider, to take me out of the running for the tournament. Tricky tricky nordies.

So game one was a little tardy starting off, for shame Craig, and each table was missing a key piece of terrain. Not that I was complaining with me pew pew! [Ed: I assume he has a shooty list] I’ve actually found something almost as annoying the empty promise of free tea and coffee – optional donation tea and coffee! Yeah thanks for guilt tripping me into that one lads!

At this point I would like to make a complaint to the club known as the Warheads, you should not allow Maynard to stretch out Floody’s Warpcon t-shirt, thus making it unwearable by Floody and giving Warpcon free advertising where they pay for everything else (and then some).

Now back to Itzacon…

Jesus lads, what’s with the price? I could find a cheaper polish hooker and she’d only steal my kidneys. Strangely I feel like the discount is more of a slap in the face, because the more people we con (pardon the pun) [Ed: The joke is in the convention name, Itz-a-con (hyphens added for clarity)] into coming the better the discount gets. I would expect at least a 10% royalty payment for each person someone brings in a group.

Ah Sunday morning wargaming! Nothing beats it you know… except when the pub isn’t and doesn’t open…. What the fudge? Are you actively trying to piss wargamers off this weekend or something? I really hope that late opening fee for the bar wasn’t just for Saturday night because if it was you guys just got pwned by some council/college official who’s probably laughing all the way to his heroine dealer or the non-Dublin equivalent.

I’d like to end this post with the following, I hate my dice (GG Keavney).

* Now a dedication to the winner of Itzacon 40k last weekend – Peter ‘Good Show’ Scott *

Opponents 5/5
Venue 5/5
Food 2/5
Rules Pack 5/5
Terrain/Tables 4/5
Organization 5/5
Prizes 4/5
Value for Money 2/5

Overall 18/20

That gives a decent score of 50/60.

So, first off my apologies for the short and late review this time. A slight technical glitch and real world shite caused my notes and time to vanish.

So once again a stunning bunch of opponents and sorry to my first opponent Eanna, who was the first person to face the new BT list I was running combined with the fantastic dice rolls I had, as it did not fair well for him. Thanks for the great and challenging games go to: Eanna (as above), Phil, Nick, Rowan and Mark. Damn the dice gods!

The venue was great but there could have been a much more efficient use of the space that was all around us. On the whole the space + area + proximity to the bar was great. The food on site was really good but again no kind of snacks for the gamers (see DDIV + III + Warpcon 2011) to keep those blood sugar levels high. The tea and coffee was free, if you could find a cup. There was a lovely donation option when you got this. I actually had Itzacon down for 3/5 for food however after the poison attempt of the Mars/caramel squares for charity I had to deduct a point. Fire the baker.

Again I’d like to state I have no problem with the 2 Kill points difference thing that you use at Itzacon Craig hence the 5/5 for the rules pack and I’d like someone that actually has an issue with it to explain (plainly) why they do without using sentences like “my army is borked by this change” as I could say the same thing of objective missions and tyranid players using Tervigons. It’s nice to see new missions being tried and maybe if we see a couple more attempts at new spins to old mission types it could be better for the tournament scene.

The terrain, while sufficient, really does need one more piece of LOS blocking terrain per table. I have no issues with the quality/standard of the terrain, as it’s of a high calibre but really it should be 25% of the table not 20%-22% with a decent LOS blocking piece somewhere. Randomizing tables instead of having “top tables” is something I’d like to see it avoid playing on the same table twice (I believe the program Johnny gave you Craig has this ability).

Organization was fantastic but watch those round times. The prizes could also have been a bit better for the price overall.

Okay, so the whole price issue is probably a touchy subject at this point, given the whole mess that ensued and while it is nice to see where the money is going it is clearly being mis-managed in some way, shape or form. This is more directed at all tournaments/cons, especially the few that have come to the communities attention lately, where there is a very large gaping hole between the price wargamers pay into the event and the amount of funds spent on them for the weekend but I digress and will leave this argument to the finer minds of our community.

Overall the entire weekend was fantastically run by Craig and fun was had by all. The pizza was great, although my stomach had a bit of a “don’t bloody try it” moment so I had to stop eating half way through. It’s also always good to get change when you buy drinks!

Thank you to all for the fun weekend and hope to see you all again soon.

Next Up: Vatiretcon and my first review on a fellow club member (oh joy)! So grab the popcorn and sit back and watch the gloves come off and sparks fly.

Grey Knights Codex Cover

The new Codex Grey Knights cover for all to see:

Click for full image.

Join the discussion on onthestep.net!

The Lesser Spotted Vanguard Veterans


Since this was discussed recently over on onthestep.net I thought I’d post up a few thoughts I had lying around in the old noggin regarding some of the least used and most expensive units in Codices Space Marines and Blood Angels.

Well first of all what do Vanguard Vets have that makes them different from assault marines, they both occupy the fast attack slot (except in Codex Blood Angels where they occupy the troops slot). Well here are some important differences:

  • +1A
  • +1Ld
  • Jump Packs are not included
  • The Sergeant comes with a power sword
  • Heroic Intervention

“But Joe, what the fudge is Heroic Intervention?!”

Gather round beleaguered wargamer and I shall give unto thee this information:

Heroic Intervention
If the squad has jump packs and arrives by deep strike the player can elect to perform a Heroic Intervention before the scatter dice are rolled.

If it is declared the squad cannot run or shoot but may assault that turn.

This ability cannot be used if an Independent Character joins the squad.

So there you have it, risky stuff eh?!

Well not as risky as you might think. Let’s look at what Codex Blood Angels can do to rectify this riskiness…

Codex Blood Angels

Well first off Corbulo has the “Far Seeing Eye” which he either uses to pick up hot Sisters of Battle at Imperial Bars/Clubs and also allows you to reroll one dice per game including the all important scatter dice…

And as per the rule book rerolling the scatter dice also includes rerolling the distance dice along with it.

Suddenly your risky deep strike isn’t too bad at all and combined with Descent of Angels allows for a pretty well timed critical assault to hit bang on time.

Put on top of this Commander Dante and we’ve got a nice little mixture in here. And it goes a little something like this

Dante

Corbulo

Assault Squad (10)
2xMeltaguns
Infernus Pistol
Power Fist

Vanguard Veteran Squad (10)
10 Jump Packs
3 Power Fists
5 Meltabombs

Yes this is an absurdly points heavy combination and we begin to see immediately why many competitive players don’t use Vanguard Veterans much, redundancy is important in competitive lists and points heavy combos leave little room for redundancy.

Here’s how it works:

So it’s turn two, your opponent is advancing towards you and isn’t far off doing what they will likely do to shift the balance of the game.

Your turn two, you roll your reserve rolls, Dante and his assault squad come on, the vanguard veterans don’t, you want them both in so you reroll the reserve roll (Blood Angels) and they arrive (lucky you).

Place the Vanguard Veterans first, placing one bolt pistol guy (who can afford to DS within 4″ of the enemy due to the 10 man squad size) and watch him scatter.

He scatters onto the enemy, “Mishap!” Your ridiculously uninformed opponent says.

Au contraire!” You exclaim, using Corbulo’s timely reroll to now roll a hit,

“That was so wise!” You say.

“That’s fuckin bullshit” your Blood Angel opponent responds.

So now you’re all set up for the sweetest multi charge of all time, 5 meltabombs and 9 power fist attacks going wherever you want them to.

Here comes phase two.

Dante’s squad and their turn.

Dante has Tactical Precision which means him and his doods don’t scatter when they deepstrike using jump packs. Now that you know where your Vanguard squad has ended up you can plop down Dante and his infernus pistol, your sergeant’s infernus pistol and the two meltaguns in the squad all within double penetration range (safely too) of the most expensive mechanised unit your opponent has.

Then the sneaky tricksiness begins.

Dante’s Death Mask reduces the Weapon Skill, Wound, Initiative and Attacks characteristics of an enemy independent character for the whole game.

If the enemy has a character in the open (Kustom Force Field Big Mek, Farseer on a jetbike) i.e. the type of characters who can swing the game, you get to reduce their characteristics and very quickly make mince meat of them with the impending Vanguard unit.

Something like this happening could throw even an experienced player off quite easily.

By now your opponent has seen a wild display of special abilities but knows that he/she can weather the storm.

Their next turn comes, they’ve lost 3 tanks, no big deal, pull back with some units, shoot the Vanguard and Dante’s squad (just normal old assault marines) now get assaulted by something fairly mean (a mob of boyz etc.). The opponent has them locked down, this squad has a lot of anti tank and can move fast no one wants them roaming freely. And besides there are only 2 Vanguard vets left now. It won’t be long until the opponent will move onto killing those razorbacks that have just come on from reserve.

Here’s where your special rules continue to dazzle. Dante gives his squad Hit and Run so at the end of your opponent’s counter assault suddenly you’re (if you don’t roll a 5+) 3D6″ away.

Then it’s your turn and you get to move 12″ on top of that to reach whatever your opponent has on the table.

Well that’s a nice trick, at least I think so.

Codex Space Marines

Let’s look at some differences between Codex Blood Angels Vanguard Veterans and Codex Space Marines Vanguard Veterans:

  • Blood Angels Vanguard Veterans are 10 points cheaper!
  • Blood Angels Vanguard Veterans have access to more equipment in the form of Infernus Pistols and Hand Flamers
  • Space Marine Vanguard Veterans have Combat Tactics
  • Blood Angels Vanguard Squads have the Red Thirst
  • Space Marines Vanguard Squads have access to cheaper Storm Shields (5 points less)

Some notable differences in there but nothing game breakingly different for sure.

Now let’s see what Codex Space Marines can muster. Well with cheaper storm shields you’d be as well to throw some in there.

Here are some units you could take to find some nice little combinations:

Tigurius

Scout Squad
Telion

Legion of the Damned
Multi Melta
Meltagun
Combi Melta

Vanguard Squad
3 power fists
4 meltabombs
3 storm shields

Here’s how it works:

Use Tigurius’ Gift of Prescience to ensure the Legion of the Damned and Vanguard come in together.

Again since only the Legion of the Damned (LotD) will be rerolling their scatter dice deep strike the Vanguard Squad first, placing the risky squad first and the safer squad based on where the first one ends up.

Having ten in that LotD squad will make sure you get to place them in such a way that they’ll always (almost) end up in double penetration range with all three melta weapons (remembering of course that they’re relentless so that Multi Melta can pop one off when it lands).

These guys crack open an expensive tank while the Vanguard can either assault what’s inside (after Telion has made sure to allocate a tasty wound on it and perhaps Tigurius has cast Null Zone <—another character maiming combo) or set up a sweet ass multi assault.

This also results in quite a few 3+ invulnerable saves staring your opponent in the face on turn 2.

I should also point out that both codices have access to infiltrating, scout moving, locator beacon carrying scout bikers, but that would just be too easy.

It’s probably a good time to point out that you can deep strike Lysander with the LotD….

And on that bomb shell,

I’ll see you soon for another Lesser Spotted, this time hopefully on the much more commonly spotted Sternguard Veterans.

Hope you’ve enjoyed!

Joe

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