Thursday, March 31, 2011

"End Around" 1500pt Contest of Champions BATTLE REPORT

ORKS! vs Dark Eldar. Round 3 of The Contest Of Champions, March 26th.
Modified Pitched Battle, Annihilation!

Orks force the Dark Eldar to go first... Killpoints on the top table....

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"Divide and Conquer" 1500pt Contest of Champions BATTLE REPORT

Chaos Space Marines vs Dark Eldar. Round 2 of The Contest Of Champions, March 26th.
Spearhead, Multiple Weighted Objectives

Dark Eldar deploy in Reserve and CSM go first...

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

"First Responders" 1500pt Contest of Champions BATTLE REPORT

Space Marines vs Dark Eldar. Round 1 of The Contest Of Champions, March 26th. Dawn of War, Capture and Control modified.

The first three units you deployed on the table counted as an additional objective when destroyed.

Space Marines win the roll off and go first....

Monday, March 28, 2011


In my first few articles about Warhammer 40,000 I talked mostly to beginners and people beginning a new army. Now I'd like to take a moment and reflect upon my experiences at the Contest of Champions in Sacramento.

Firstly and most importantly, I had a blast. As usual Great Escape Games in Sacramento does the MOST incredible job of attracting 80+ people to a Warhammer 40k tournament. Gary & Sirus(and admin staff) run this tournament very smoothly and have been doing it for so long that it shows. I cannot thank them enough for their efforts.

Secondly, I learned a lot. This is a key element to becoming competitive(especially at the CoC level) and staying there amongst a group of ultra competitive people. I have no shame in believing that the average IQ amongst tournament Warhammer 40k players is WELL above average(on the other hand so is the level of adult virgins). You have to be somewhat cerebral just to have read the rule book and desired to actually play after consuming so much out of context jargon. On a personal note what I learned may not be what I expected to take away from this tournament but that doesn't mean that it was any less valuable.

Thirdly...My friends did SUPER well and that is always a small consolation. Shotdownmind got 3rd overall(out of 82) and General Bass(Chaos666) went 3-0 with all 3 bonus objectives.

All that being said there was one very sad disappointment. The opponent I encountered for my second round, his initials are the same as the first name of a certain female country singer that he also shared physical resemblance with, wasn't very fun. On top of not being very fun, he was blunt and pragmatic in a bad way. His countenance was dreary from the start and at no time did he make an attempt to create rapport. He didn't crack a joke, he didn't smile, he didn't try to explain rules about his army to me, he made comments under his breath and worst of all he SLOW PLAYED ME BIG TIME! So, the lessons I learned from this particular tournament were not about deployment strategy or the strengths and weaknesses of my army. The lesson I learned at this tournament is that SLOW PLAY is a very real obstacle to a fair game. I used to hear my local shop owner talk about(and give very valid advice on) SLOW PLAY and his experiences with it. I guess I should have taken him more seriously. General Oadius is not feeling sorry for himself here, I just want you to learn from my mistakes. The simple fact that I have encountered only one such individual in my years of playing 40k, means that 99.9% of you are fantastically sincere and warm. Playing Warhammer 40k means a lot to me and I'll be damned if an underhanded general presents more than an opportunity to learn on my road to apex generalship.

I think that a certain clarification needs to take place. There are several types of SLOW PLAY. One is where you have a new or inexperienced general who needs time to play the game properly. In these cases a lot of rules will be talked about and discussed in a very innocent and friendly way. There is the type of SLOW PLAY where a horde player will have 100+ models and the sheer time to move models is the obstacle. There is the type of SLOW PLAY that is done so with ill intention but is done so smoothly that the enemy general is unaware(I really don't have a problem with this as it is impossible to prove and requires cunning). There is the type of SLOW PLAY where you matched up against a very garrulous(typically very friendly) person that wants to talk more than he wants to win. These are some of the nicest people you will meet and they enjoy the interaction between strangers. Warhammer is wonderful in it's ability to bring people of all types together. Then there is the type of SLOW PLAY I had the pleasure of playing against, where your opponent picks one topic per phase to find something to debate fiercely and uses completely erroneous information to consume your valuable time.

Here are my examples: Enemy monstrous creature deep strikes onto a wrecked rhino, next turn another rhino with access hatches wants to shoot at the giant model with melta and melta pistols. SLOW PLAY general says "well he is in cover." General Oadius says "that doesn't matter, you are a MC and therefore require 50% obscurity to gain a cover save." SLOW PLAY says "well I'm down here on the floor of the table not on top of the rhino because I blew it up." GEN Oadius says "no you wrecked it, therefore it is a 3-Dimensional object that you are standing on top of, it doesn't matter anyways because I can see your entire model without obscurity here or there(keep in mind a melta pistol only has a 6" range..the fact that he is in range pretty much means it is impossible to get a cover save). This continues for like 3 to 4 minutes before I go off to get a judge, SLOW PLAY stops me and says that it's OK. He mutters under his breath that I am probably right. OK... he is definitely not the only person to believe that a MC in cover gains a 4+ but to argue for 5 minutes that my rhino is not there and therefore he is obscured....there is no basis in logic for that argument. I didn't get that he was SLOW PLAYING me yet but the proof was coming soon.

The real proof is when he assaulted my Reclusiarch, Priest and 8 man assault marines with some out flankers that were outnumbered and sure to die. I was in cover, he had no grenades and so the argument began....I said I have an initiative 5 HQ do you have grenades? No, he says but you go at initiative 10, I go at my normal initiative and then your Thunder hammer goes last... I blink in disbelief for a moment, gather my wits and reply, "No.". He repeats his last statement exactly and doesn't change expression. I ask him how he got through his first game without this coming up. He said it didn't. I tell him that I have never heard that before but it doesn't even matter. I am confident that at any initiative order(even him going first)I'm going to kill those 4 guys and consolidate. I tell him to proceed how he wishes but that I am now sure that he is arguing to eat up the clock and that I'd like to move on. Now at this point when somebody accuses me of doing something less than scrupulous, I typically change expression of sorts and reply with indignation. He did not. That to me is a further mark of his pragmatism and ignorance OR proof positive that he was trying to slow the game down. Either way at this point in the game I'm done with the guy and definitely blowing his sportsmanship score down to the underground plumbing. That means that he cannot possibly win best overall or even place because the point margin at the top DEFINITELY requires perfect sportsmanship scores. So in the end his efforts are just as counter productive as they were emotionally draining on me. He wouldn't let it go, so I went over to Shotdownmind who was playing a table away and asked him If I had been smoking crack my entire 40k career. He told me that I had been smoking crack but that even so this initiative 10 is SHENANIGANS. Right off the bat he says that. Not having met my competitor nor gone through all the previous arguments he knew right off the bat....SHENANIGANS. Initiative 10? WTF man. It was too late, he had the game because there wasn't a turn 5 MUCH LESS A 6 or 7!! He'd been playing for that from the beginning. I planned(as usual) to assault by 5 with enough force to wipe his troop in one turn if the game ended on 5. I'd have sufficient forces remaining to survive shooting and even a resulting counter charge when I camped the middle objective(I had 1st turn). Game ends before turn 4 is even over and I'm about an inch away from contesting middle objective for tie. He didn't get his personal objective and therefore was out of the running for best general too. I did get my personal objective(killed his deep striking HQ, no problem).

Up to this point I've made a few broad generalizations when I referred to the Initiative 10 thing as "Proof Positive". I'd like to clarify here as well. Previously I mentioned the several different types of SLOW PLAY, i.e. newbies, horde, super smooth, talkative/friendly and of course the intentional SLOW PLAYER. With those 5 categories in mind all I had to do was narrow it down to which one he was.

1. Newbie - Nope, guy had fully painted army, he knew his codex and he knew mine.

2. Horde - Nope, he was playing bugs but his model count was only 66. He reserved things and my shooting eliminated so much of his army by the second turn that there wasn't much to move(7 frags shooting into 30 Termagents & 10 warriors).

3. Cunning/Devious - Nope, he used erroneous arguments that were baffling for their audacity in insulting my intelligence and was just plain wrong on several occasions. He didn't get his personal objective and lost sportsmanship scores to me. So, not only was I aware of my discomfort at the time...I'm writing about it now.

4. Garrulous/Talkative/Loquacious/Friendly(whatever you want to call it) - Nope, guy didn't say a word to me on a personal note the entire time. No kidding, not once. Never in life have I played such a sterile game.

5. SLOW PLAYER - well friends...this is all that's left isn't it. Here in lies my "Proof Positive".

Now the thing to do here is just recognize some of the tell-tale signs of a conscious SLOW PLAYER and do your best to avoid them. Minimize arguments that don't have significant impact on the game one way or the other by just giving them their way. Bring judges into disagreement quicker and possibly ask for their continued observance of the game until things are going smoother. You will need to compensate by finishing your turn quicker. You will also need to readjust your strategy for the limited number of turns you will play through. Finally, DON'T GET DISCOURAGED. This type of general is few and far between. They aren't clever enough to win with their army or their tactics so they will try to bring you down with them. Just remember to try and have fun, no matter what.

So now that I have vented my frustrations here on this blog(better here than on his face). I can focus on May's CoC and be a better general for the experience. At least for that I can thank him. In my next article I will do my best to return to objectivity and give you some solid advice on cover saves, going to ground and keeping your vehicles and Monstrous Creatures alive as long as possible. UNTIL THEN...PLAY WELL, ROLL BETTER!!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

"Military Action"

Wolfbrothers ATTACK Sacramento
1500pt Warhammer 40k Escalation Tournament

Through the STORM!

Great Escape Games, Sacramento - Contest of Champions 2011 - The 2nd Event of the year so far, and what a Storm it was in all ways! We had a blast - the energy and competition were amazing! Thanks to Gary, Sirus, and the rest of the awesome GeG staff for another excellent Tournament!

Friday, March 25, 2011



1500pts of Brutal Warhammer 40k competition at Great Escape Games, Sacramento.

We are on our way!

Prophet 15k
1 Ravager, 105 pts
1 Ravager, 105 pts
1 Razorwing Jetfighter, 155 pts (Splinter Cannon x1)

1 Archon, 145 pts (Plasma Grenades; Agoniser; Combat Drugs; Phantasm Grenade Launcher; Shadow Field)
5 Incubi, 180 pts
1 Raider (Enhanced Aethersails; Grisly Trophies)

1 Haemonculus, 120 pts (Liquifier Gun x1)
1 Haemonculus (Liquifier Gun x1)

8 Wyches, 213 pts (Shardnet & Impaler x1; Haywire Grenades)
1 Hekatrix (Haywire Grenades; Agoniser)
1 Raider (Enhanced Aethersails)

8 Wyches, 213 pts (Shardnet & Impaler x1; Haywire Grenades)
1 Hekatrix (Haywire Grenades; Agoniser)
1 Raider (Enhanced Aethersails)

5 Wracks, 130 pts (Liquifier Gun x1)
1 Venom (Splinter Cannon x1; Grisly Trophies)
5 Wracks, 130 pts (Liquifier Gun x1)
1 Venom (Splinter Cannon x1; Grisly Trophies)

Total Roster Cost: 1496

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


It's time to play Warhammer 40,000 with your masterly created army. I'm here to help any way I can and get you over the threshold to more wins. Today I'm going to talk about the Force Organization Chart, unit use and some deployment.

The Force Organization Chart or FoC, as you know is the guideline for how many units of what type you can bring onto the battlefield. There is the compulsory 1 HQ and 2 Troops and the optional(up to) 2 HQ's, 3 Elites, 6 Troops, 3 Fast & 3 Heavy Supports. There are some codex exceptions to the FoC. Knowing how your codex manipulates the FoC can be one of your army's biggest strengths. For instance, the Space Wolves are allowed up to 4 HQ choices. You can also move some units from one FoC slot to another by taking a certain HQ. Taking Belial in your Dark Angel army allows your Elite Terminators choices to become Troops. Chaos Lesser Demons do not occupy an FoC slot but are considered troops. Commander Dante moves Sanguinary guard from Elite to Troops. Haemonculous' make wracks troops etc..etc...etc...The rules for these unit swaps and FoC exceptions aren't always easy to find. Typically these rules revolve around the troop slot, probably because it is the most important. How these rule affect your game play varies from one codex and play style to another, but they should be learned.

Understanding each(FoC) slot as it relates to the strengths and weaknesses of your army is very important. I could also say: understanding each slot as it relates to the strength and weaknesses of your troops is very important. 2 of the 3 possible victory condition scenarios involve holding one or multiple objectives(uncontested) with a TROOP at the end of the game. Yes annihilation is ALL about killing the other guy, YES if you table your opponent in an objective match up you still win...BUT, you can't realistically expect to do that. So, get used to caudling your precious troops like newborn children.

Using each unit for it's intended purpose is typically a good idea. I would take it a step farther and say that using each unit for supporting your troops is typically a good idea. Take lots of troops and employ tactics and rules to keep those troops alive by the end of the game. Each FoC slot and even each unit will have varying degrees of success doing different things, but ONLY A TROOP CAN HOLD AN OBJECTIVE.

Ironically, I typically charge a portion of my troops headlong into enemy lines. Primarily because Blood Angel Assault marines are my anchor point and they can be toughened up by bringing chaplains for Fearlessness and priests for Feel No Pain. I would not recommend this course of action for a Tau player however(not with any build that I could conceive) but for my particuliar army it works.

Deployment is super vital and maybe not my strong point, but I do have a few tips for you. Just like the FoC rules, each Codex will typically have exceptions to deployment guidelines. Some HQ's will allow themselves and others to deploy differently then their normal profile. Taking a certain DarkEldar HQ allows your troop transports(fast skimmers) to deepstrike. Taking an IG Master of the Fleet increases the required roll for enemy reserves to increase by 1. A certain item on a Tau commander will allow one unit at a time to arrive on a roll of 2+ regarless of turn. Lady Malys(DE) gives you a redeployment after the enemy has set up. Comb through your codex and find out what type of deployment options you have. Deployment strategy will mostly likely change from one scenario and deployment type to another, so keeping your options open is vital.

These are just some general things to keep in mind as you begin to field your army. Winning at Warhammer 40,000 takes some time and may not happen right away(there are few games, if any, that are more complicated), but a well earned win will get you hooked and a well earned tournament win will addict you entirely. TILL THEN....PLAY WELL, ROLL BETTER.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Chat with 40k Nation

Game the Mission, Win the War!

The mission variations available at the Contest of Champions are impressive. Simple enough to fall into the standard mission formats - but a serious effort has been made to force hard decisions on the players each game, each round. Additional Victory Conditions and the Personal Bonus Objectives compound the possibilities. Its the grim darkness of the far future over there in Sacramento, and there is only war!

The Generals encountered at CoC are brutal and amazing. Careful thought and practice and plenty of pain/time has gone into the army lists there. The Tournament format, mission layout, and all the other etcs will force a hard thought list - to be successful on almost any level players will need a deep understanding of their own list as well as great skill at breaking down the opponents forces.

Know your list. Know the mission. Know the rules!

Now that we are familiar with the missions and understand things like the personal bonus objective, composition scoring, and the like, we can get into the business of Winning the War.

Build an Army for the Task at hand. Have a plan, at least a basic strategy to win the missions. EACH of the missions. Earlier we categorized the missions into three categories much like the Big Rule Book. Work out the various tactics, specific or not, that the units in the list will use to defeat other probable units and obstacles.

Paint the Army! The CoC uses a Checklist format, dont leave points OFF the Table! Dont be a jerk, pick your battles on and off the table, there is sportsmanship at this event. These are the bare minimums to stand a chance. This is where we begin!

The mission categories we identified earlier were Annihilation (3), Dawn of War (3), and Standard (4). 

We fully expect some mixing and matching of these mission formats and deployments, and even Additional Victory Conditions. Personal Bonus Objectives are worth mentioning once more because you cannot choose the same Bonus Objective as the Additional Victory Conditions. These are the three tiers for victory each round, and many can be accomplished without killing much of the opponents forces.

Further breakdown of the missions gives us the following:

* One Objective each, Table Quarters x 2
** Multiple Objectives x 4
*** Annihilation x 3
**** One Objective with VIP unit x 1

The reasoning for this further breakdown is to help matrix out which personal bonus objectives will be most likely and most beneficial for YOUR ARMY, as well as draw a big fat arrow right at the basic strategies YOUR ARMY will need to win the majority of missions.

These info bits combined with a careful understanding of each mission/deployment/additional/bonus tell us that Troops - good Troops and Proper Deployment and Use of Troops will WIN these Missions and that HQs of all sorts become more of a liability then usual. Although neither of points should be a surprise, we think that troop strength is even more important for the CoC format then many other Tournament formats because of the overall arrangement of scoring and the various victory conditions.

The next main considerations are the same as usual but require proper mention.

- Alpha Strike: Strategy and Tactics to deliver and survive - and does YOUR ARMY actually have an alpha strike against many of the army archetypes it is likely to encounter.

- Reserves: Army and Mission match up specific obviously. There are still strategy and tactical generics to be worked through and considered long before each battle. Reserve deployment options for each mission type on down the line of victory tiers. Hybrid reserve options for deployment like Spearhead or Refused Flank offensive/defensive strategies. For many lists we could be making considerations on only one or two units - others, the entire army!

This mental and physical preparation will improve performance on the victory tiers!

Here is a quick example breakdown of MY ARMY:

++ Sticky (FnP) Troops x 4
+ In fast Skimmers (some Aether sails!)
+ Reserve deployment advantages
+ Archon/Incubi SWOOPY KILLY: Hard hitting, fast, hard to kill, full of power weapons.
- No Real Alpha Strike vs Mech. Anti-Tank at a medium level (at best) overall.
- 16 Kill Points available in regular Annihilation
- Surgical Requirements for victory
- Tell my opponents my plan to win.... a future article.

To the Wolf, there is only the Hunt and the Joy of the Kill.

... end transmission ...

Friday, March 18, 2011

Building your First Army - FOR THE WIN

Yesterday, I talked about choosing your army and how to buy it. Today is all about putting it together properly with an emphasis on Strategy and tactics. Yes, there are modelling techniques that relate to strategy. Knowing just a few will make your army more effective and your gameplay go smoother.

I mentioned "What You See Is What You Get." is referred to as WYSIWYG, yesterday. This is a really important rule/idea to keep in mind when you begin planning your army. You don't want to just start throwing weapons on guys because it looks cool, everything needs to match up to the lists you intend to play. Typically each unit and each sargeant within the unit will have different weapons options. Make sure you set aside the weapons for the models and place them accordingly. Missile launcher on a troop and power weapon on the sargeant for example(not Vice Versa). Just taking some time to match up the models with the list you intend to play will save you from spending more($$ & time) later.

The same principle applies to tanks and transports as well. You need to look at the standard wargear for each unit you are modeling AND the weapon/armor upgrades. With tanks the main things are of course the weapons, but little things like searchlights and smoke launchers must be represented on the actual model as well.

WYSIWYG may seem a little overwhelming at first, but you will pick it up quick. Games Workshop does a good job of supplying most of the weapons upgrades and options available with the applicable kit. Having all your models actually represent the wargear on your army list will make gameplay easier and more accurate. Keeping track of an ambiguous melta gun(not modelled) in a squad makes you pretty dubious when you are within hairs of double penetrating a Land Raider.

Now that you've matched up your lists with the actual models and weapons they come with you'll need to plan a few more things before building. I've learned that there are a few general things you can do to make your army easier to play and thusly more effective. Primarily is putting in modelling queues for identifying one, similiar unit, from another. For instance, Blood Angel Assault Marines are a troop choice and come with a chainsword, boltpistol & grenades as standard wargear. I have several identical units of Assault marines and until they are painted with squad markings(pretty much the last thing you paint) how will I tell them apart when I assault with 2 or more of my squads? Well, what I did is made all the guys in one unit Left handed chainswords, another right handed chainswords and yet another all with pointy helmets. You could do another with no helmets, all with the swords in the air, another with the pistols in the air, one squad all looking left another looking get the idea. Believe me when I tell you, this helps a lot(especially in close combat).

Another big modelling tip I can give you is Banners. Yeah, banners.... Place them strategically, use a lot of them. Now this is bit of a nuance technique, but I feel it bears talking about now. Depending on what army you are playing is what models you may have that are in desperate need of cover saves. Typically this refers to: Demon Princes, Dreadnoughts(smoke is only one turn), Wraithlords, Rhinos, Mephiston and a lot of other things. Specifically what I mean is confering a cover save to a unit that is not in cover or does not normally benefit from being in cover(i.e. monstrous creatures or vehicles). Remember, that TRUE line of sight from the models eyes you are shooting from to a Monstrous Creature or Vehicle requires 50% + obscurity to gain a cover save. You can use a few well placed banners, say on the back of a Chaos Rhino or two to COMPLETLY obscure a properly modelled Demon Prince, getting a 4+ cover should be easy. A few banners properly placed on the backs of Ork Boyz could obscure a Truck or Can. Banners are not the only way to do this either. This principle does go both ways, so if you have obscured the vision of a Dreadnought who wants to fire then the enemy may benefit from a save they may or may not normally get.

Don't Flail. This is a simple one but keep your profile low. Don't mount your troops or walkers on tall bases, there will be times you want to hide them. Don't wave the arms of your Wraithlords around or in the air. Don't stand your larger units on their toes or elaborate pedestals. This will cost you cover saves. I don't even use the pintle mounted bolters marines that come with Rhino kits.

I'm getting long winded...Finally MAGNETS!! I can't say this enough, magnets! In my last article I talked about buying them before assembling your army to save you time and money. In this article I talked about units having different weapon and armor options and how they may be interchangeable at times. The fact of the matter is: you will change lists more than you change underwear(way more, possibly). Having said that you, you will be a lot happier if you take the time to put in some magnets from the starts. If you had one guy in a Dark Eldar Warrior squad who could switch between a Dark Lance and a Splinter Cannon( or whatever other long/medium range weapon they could switch with), then you wouldn't need to buy another unit of models or make your unit sizes smaller. My friend magnetized the arm of his Thunderwolves to switch between Storm Shields and Lightning Claws and on the other hand he did Frost blades, Thunder hammers and Lightning claws interchangeable via magnets. Now he doesn't have to spend $500 in Canis models. Tactical marines can have the Las Cannon and Missile Launcher guy Magnetized or the sargeant's power weapon arm interchangeable with a power fist.

So these are some common sense tips for modelling your armies for ease of play, combat effectiveness and budget smarts. In the next article I'll go into actually playing this army you've lovingly taken the time to decide upon, purchase and assemble so sensibly. TILL THEN...PLAY WELL, ROLL BETTER!

Thursday, March 17, 2011


In this article, I'll review my experiences on building armies. A lot of money and precious time can be saved by avoiding some mistakes I've made and tips I've picked up along the way so here we go.

First things first... You should review the rule book and get a general notion of how the game is really played. I would suggest thoroughly reviewing the 3 steps(move, shoot, assault) and the universal rules.

Secondly, do not just haul off and buy an army just for it's background story or fluff. Go down to the store and ask if it's ok to read through some(or all) of the codex's a little. Tell them you are wanting to buy an army but are undecided. At this point the store owner or employee may want to inject his or her opinion. Be nice and nod... Make sure you make this decision for yourself, you are going to be spending some time with this army.

There is a lot of information to consume in the various codexes that you'll be interested in. Ask yourself a few questions about how you want to play the game of Warhammer 40,000. For instance... Do you want to play a mechanized army or do you like the Foot Sloggers like Nids and Necrons? Are you more interested in firing big guns or do you want to trade blows toe to toe? Are you interested in balance, symmetry or aesthetics? Look at the codex and make sure that the rules for the army and their weaponry play the way you want. If you are seriously into some type of background story or fluff to an army then make sure that actually manifests into the game play.

If you really wanted to be prudent, then Proxy the armies you've narrowed it down to a few times. Proxy meaning to play something(chess/checkers peices, coins or anything really) in place of the models you'll be needing for the army you want. You don't have to conduct 2500 point games with a bunch of chess peices and used toilet rolls, but play a few units out against an enemy(that you can proxy too)in moving, shooting and assault. Use some special rules and see how they play out.

Ok so now you've decided for yourself what army to play and are ready to buy. My advice is don't. Buy the codex and take it home. Read it, absorb it...possibly memorize most of it. Really get to know your Force Organization Chart choices and weapons. Make some lists and look at your troops choices carefully. Troops win two thirds of your game types(unless you are looking to table your opponents everytime). So you will need lots of troops and troop transports.

Now that you've got some lists together, it's time to budget for your big purchase. Ideally you'll want to buy the bulk of your army at once so you can ask for a discount. Depending on how much you spend is how much discount you can expect. If you are spending less than $200 then your best bet is to buy online. There are some of the really reputable ebay sellers or online stores that offer discounts AND have reasonable shipping. If you are spending $200 - $1000+ then you can get as much as 20% off(even from your local store). Most shop owners won't offer you a discount, so you'll have to ask for it. I like to call ahead and make sure they have the stuff I need. Be polite and say something like "Hello, I wanted to come down and clean you out of Blood Angel models. Is there a chance for a bulk purchase discount?" The picture in my first article( + a large GW hardcase) was bought in one shot and I got a 20% discount.

Try not to go too crazy on Elites and Fast or even HQ's choices. Buy the few units that are too much fun to resist, but base your army on troop strength and supporting those troops. Most of the time the generic HQ choices are going to be your best bet. If you want to splurge anywhere but Troops then I would suggest buying some extra Heavy Support options(especially if you are a Space Marine player). Make sure to get the weapon upgrades(like Melta guns and plasma guns)that you may need from the start. You'll want to model your army so "What you see is what you get" or WYSIWYG'd.

Consider a hard case for carrying your army safely. Get a few different colors of dice. If you can find magnets at the same place you are buying your army then buy them there too. Magnets can save you a lot of time and money by allowing a single unit or tank to be equipped with multiple weapon formats. A Land Raider could have it's side sponsons magnetized so as to represent a Redeemer or Crusader Variant. A tactical unit can have magnetized flamer or melta gun. You can magnetize whole arms on HQ choices and make your weapons interchangeable or magnetize jump packs and back packs onto assault marines( my favorite ).

Now that you have your army....DON'T haul off and just throw it together. I'll weigh in tomorrow on some tips for assembling your models(from a tactics and budgetary viewpoint). TILL THEN...PLAY WELL, ROLL BETTER

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Vassal 40k: How-to and 40kNation Tournament

Getting Started in Warhammer 40,000 and the evolution to apex generalship.

I started playing Warhammer 40,000 about 3 years ago. I was spurred on by a friend who was picking the game back up in a big way. I gave him $120.00 and he came back with a whole slew of Dark Angel and generic space marine stuff.

I was super excited to build, paint and play those models. Ironically 90% of them(dark angels)are still unbuilt to this day.

From there I started to get into some Black Library books by Dan Abnett about Gaunt's Ghosts(Imperial Guard) and that lead to me picking up an Ultramarine Omnibus.

After that hefty book it was all over for me and the only color I wanted my Space Marines wearing was codex blue. I thought that the ultra rigid, super disciplined boys in blue would bring me victory on the battlefield everytime. I was dead wrong. My friend had developed a complete Nurgle list that he was perfecting and it would win everytime. Granted we weren't playing the rules right(so many rules) and that I just wasn't very good in the beginning, but he stomped me GOOD..A LOT. That got really old, especially since I'm a really poor loser and fiercely competitive (great for Warhammer 40k right? wrong.)

Eventually I just gave up on the Ultramarines and started buying Chaos models. That worked out pretty good, I could understand the clear strengths of my troops and employ them properly. I had crazy HQ choices and Defilers are just plain fun.Things started to get really going when I entered a few tournaments. My friend the Chaos player was sick or busy and I borrowed his Nurgle list and went 3-0, won best general and I have never looked back from that moment. Ard Boyz came soon after and I didn't make the Semi Finals but someone who did gave me their spot.

Using the Ard Boyz Substitution clause I went with my Chaos friend(who made Semi's)to Great Escape games in Sacramento. HOLY SHIT. What a great time...I got to see so many armies on so many tables and mix with so many more people that I had access to in Reno. Ard Boyz was really the nail in the coffin, my addiction was complete. I was and am a Warhammer 40,000 zealot. I've continued growth and involvement with the game and things keep moving forward. Games Workshop released the Blood Angel codex and i'm back to playing Space Marines again(happily).

My path lead me to meeting a Tau General named Doug. Poor Doug was a lot like my Ultramarines at first, couldn't win a game to save his life. [He tried hard! - sic] Then Doug caught the Warhammer 40,000 bug full on and now he is a dominate general with 3 armies(Tau, SW and now DE). My friends and I play as many games in a week as our wives will allow(and then a few more). Now Doug has syndicated the WolfBrothers Club Chapter and we've even had a fantastic tournament to Prime us for the Sacramento CoC.

So now that you know where I'm coming from I wanted to start writing some articles about Warhammer 40,000. I want to discuss getting started playing Warhammer all the way to the evolution into end game generalship.

I am sympathetic to the learning curve of this game and how expensive and sometimes frustrating it can be. I am not the guy to discuss painting or modeling, much less write about it. I can help you win more games, avoid the mistakes I've made and make sure you don't go broke trying to figure out what armies and units work best for you -  Till well, roll better.

Countdown to Contest of Champions

The last few days available to us to play and paint are ticking by. The Contest of Champions is upon us!

The Wolfbrothers of 40kNation:

Monday, March 14, 2011

Wolfbrothers 40kNation CoC PRIMER Event!

Kicking off the final two weeks of preparations for the March 26th CONTEST OF CHAMPIONS Tournament at Great Escape Games, Sacramento. We are doing our best to become experts at the mission and format, and to up the competition level amongst our club members. For the Glory, For The WOLFBROTHERS!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Contest of Champions: Personal Bonus Objective

 PRIZES, Prizes, Prizes! At the end of the year FOUR (of six possible) Contest of Champions Event scores are added up for the final glory! Accomplishing the personal goal throughout each event is Significant!

Battle Points are earned each round each mission. A Loss is worth 5 points, Draw 10pts, and a Win 15 - additionally, and very importantly, each round both opponents secretly select a PERSONAL BONUS OBJECTIVE from a list of six. Achieving this objective is worth an additional 5 Battle Points for a total for 20 available points each mission.
These bonus objectives are an important part of the plan for victory each round. They are worth a lot of points. Competitors are not allowed to choose an objective that matches the mission. To really win the battle and the war you will need to plan ahead and capture these points each and every round.
Know your list. Know the mission. Know the rules!
The Personal Bonus Objectives are:
- Capture more table quarters than opponent.
- Destroy opponents most expensive HQ.
- Have more scoring units above half strength in enemy deploy than opponent.
- Eliminate over half of opponents army.
- Keep your most expensive unit above half strength.
- Destroy your opponents most expensive unit.

Episode Seven

100 Subscribers on YouTube, CoC Primer Tournament this weekend, Dark Eldar Update soon....

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Contest of Champions: Mission Book Summary

Players participating in the Contest of Champions Tournament are asked to be familiar with these missions. We have been doing our best since the end of January to become experts. You are encouraged to visit the Great Escape Games forums and get the mission book directly from the source.

This tournament is year long with an event every other month. Its an Escalation League, starting at 1250 in January, notching up each competition by another 250pts to finish at 2500 in December. There is battle, sportsmanship, paint, and composition scoring each event.

Our club, the Wolfbrothers 40kNation Chapter, will host a CoC Primer Tournament on March 12th, mirroring the event format. With $100 in Prizes and FREE Entry it promises to be an exciting way to kick-off final preparations for the real fight on the 26th.

Although we are by no means finished, we sure have played the hell out of these scenarios as of late, and in the next few posts we will provide some insight on the task at hand in Sacramento:

This group of missions/scenarios are fairly straight forward. Each uses a standard deployment and a standard mission format. There are very few additional special rules and modifications - no limits on scouts and infiltrators and no surprise special outflankers (etc.) Each mission is really defined by its Additional Victory Conditions although the standard mission format is often modified.

We have identified 11 separate scenarios. Please read the actual mission book as it is subject to change and update. We have separated the missions into three categories: Annihilation, Dawn of War, and Standard:

Annihilation Missions:

#1 Capture the Enemy Camp: Pitched Battled, Killpoints - Each unit in your enemy deployment zone is worth an additional killpoint.

#3 Intelligent Design: Spearhead, Killpoints - Units are worth additional killpoints based on FoC and Points Value. (For Example, HQs are worth 1kp for each 50points.)

#9 Choices, Choices: Spearhead, Killpoints - 1 objective in center of table worth 2 killpoints.

Dawn of War

#2 Consume: Command & Control - Each table quarter is worth an additional objective.

#8 To Kill A Snake: Command & Control - HQ units are worth an additional objective.

#11 Ontime, Ontarget: Command & Control - Enemy VIP unit can score an additional objective.


#4 Head Hunters: Spearhead, Sieze Ground - Designated HQ is worth additional objectives.

#5 Storm Rising: Spearhead, Command & Control - Table Quarters are worth additional objectives.

#6 Shifting Sands: Pitched Battle, Three Objectives worth d3 Objective points each game turn.

#7 Unstable: Pitched Battle, Five Objectives - One in center, four others that might explode.

#10 Walk the Line: Pitched Battle, Three Objectives worth d3 each

Notes: #10 Walk the Line has replaced #6 Shifting Sands in the official mission book.

"Be familiar..." -- be prepared for these missions, in any order, but also any hybrid-combo of the mission elements. For example, we have seen #4 Head Hunters with Dawn of War deployment.

Friday, March 4, 2011

"Ontime, Ontarget" DE vs DE 1500pts VIDEO Battle Report

Dark Eldar vs Dark Eldar 1500pt Video Battle Report. Playing one of the Great Escape Games Contest of Champion missions called "Ontime, Ontarget." DoW, C&C modified.

Each player got to choose the enemy VIP unit. That unit could score on either objective and couldent be contested.

Our Dark Eldar Turf War continues...

Thursday, March 3, 2011

March 12th WOLFBROTHERS CoC Primer Event

Saturday, March 12th at 10am:

Wolfbrothers Chapter will be hosting a CoC Primer Tournament on March 12th. Kicking off final preparations for the March 26th Contest of Champions Escalation Tournament at Great Escape Games, Sacramento.

Location will be announced shortly as final arrangements are being hammered out now.

 This Tournament is Invite Only, but Everyone is Invited! Best of all its FREE! We will have at least $100 in prizes for Best General/Favorite Army as well as random fun prizes during the event.

We will of course be using the Great Escape Games mission book and format for the CoC tournament.

If you cannot participate in the tournament then plan to drop by anyways. You will not be disappointed!

Stay tuned for details, or contact me with any questions!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

"Choices, Choices" DE vs DE 1500pt BATTLE REPORT

Dark Eldar vs Dark Eldar 1500pt Video Battle Report. Playing one of the Great Escape Games Contest of Champion missions called "Choices, Choices." Spearhead, kill points modified.