Last weekend I participated in easily one of the most fun tournaments I have ever played in. It was very different from pretty much any event that I have played in the fact that it was set up as a campign. The way it worked was all the armies were split up into one of two main factions (Imperial or Destruction) and then a third "flex" faction (for armies that have their own agenda aka Eldar, Tau and Necrons, and more importantly to make sure the two sides had an equal amount of people). There were 15 tables, split into 5 different sectors around the Cadian gate at the eye of terror all with appropriate scenery to match that sector. All the factions in your sector were playing the same mission, and depending on how many people on your faction completed the secondary objectives you would get bonus' in the next round. So that meant lots of planning and it was as much of a group effort as a solo effort which gave you a greater overall sense of purpose which in my mind greatly added to the experienced.
The overall goal for the tournament for the Imperial side was to make sure that they held off the Chaos advance and the Chaos goal was to watch Cadia burn. The other really cool thing with the tournament is that you didnt just have your one army list that you played through all 6 games. You had to create a "core" 1400pts list then a 1650pts and 1900pts list that included your 1400pts list. Depending on how each faction did that round and what secondary objectives were met determined which list you would be playing. One last monkey to throw into the wrench is there were NO special characters allowed, period. What they did do was make any "army changing" character's abilities available as purchasable upgrades. So if you played a Vulka list, you could buy his ability for points. All the Special Characters were all put to the side and again, depending on which secondary objectives you completed meant you might get a bonus special character added to your army in the next game...for free! With both of these factors combined it sometimes meant that you were up 250pts+ on your opponent or you were down the by same margin. I know initally that sounds totally messed and you would think it was like a free pass in that round, but you would be surprised how many people who were down won their games. I for one actually REALLY liked this aspect of the game since it really did change things up and made you think somewhat outside the box and focus much more on those secondary objectives (which were as important as winning the game...sometimes more-so). One last thing that I really like that Kyle implemented were no verying degrees in victory/losses. So, if you table your opponent you get the same battle score as someone who wins by 1 kill point. So, without further adieu here is Hive Fleet Leviathon.
1400pts - Core List
Hive Tyrant - Bonesword, Lash Whip, Scything Talons, Hive Commander, Paroxysm and Leech Essence (as if there are any other powers to take :P )
Zoanthropes (3) - Mycetic Spore
Hive Guard (2)
Hormagaunts (20) - Toxin Sacs
Tyranid Warriors (5) - Dual Boneswords, Scything Talons, Toxin Sacs
Trygon - Adrenal Glands
+ Armored Shell on the Hive Tyrant
+ Fast Attack - Raveners(6) - Scything Talons, Rending Claws
* The Raveners were removed
* Adrenal Glands were removed from the Trygon
+ Tyranid Prime - Dual Boneswords, Scything Talons
+ Carnifex Brood (2) - 2xBrain Leech Devourers
My first game was against a Blood Angels player named Matt. This game we were to use our 1400pts list and we had a rather interesting mission. Basically the game was played in the aftermath of a huge bombardment so all the terrain was either burning or a charred husk of what it used to be. What this means in games terms is that all terrain blocks LOS (due to smoke) and about half of the terrain counts as dangerous (due to being on FIRE lol), so naturally I was quite pleased. Matt's army was 100% mech with a mixture of rhinos w/ tact squads and razorbacks /w assault squads.
- Matt had moved all his assault squads into a building and then I managed to roll a direct hit with the Mawloc when he came in. I got about 11 marines under the template, sadly though since they were in terrain he didnt really kill all that many
- My hive guard managed to blow up his 2 razorbacks and immobilize 1 of them.
- The Trygon killed about half of his army single handedly. He killed 18 marines including killing off the Space Marine Commander's squad which paved the way for him to be killed by regular old Termagants :D
- I played this game about as well as I could of and really there wasn't much Matt could of done based on the scenario. With that being said there was a huge melee on the large building he was holding that had all his assault squads and his commander in combat with the Mawloc, 24 Termagants and the 20 Hormagaunts. It really was back and forth for a while there then the Mawloc did in his Sang Priest which greatly turned the tide of battle. He ended the game with an immobilized razorback and a rhino
Final Result:Victory. The mission was objectives and I managed to get 1 to his 0. I also managed to score 3 of the 5 secondary missions...one of which was add a special character for the next game! Matt was a really good sport and there was quite a bit of back and forth before the tyranid menace prevailed.
MEGA WORM KILL COUNTER!
Trygon - 18 Mawloc - 5
My second game is against a really nicely painted Imperial Fists army being played by a chap named Thomas. The mission was modified kill points. How it works is each army gets 12 Kill Points and assigns which units will be worth points, and which won't, or if you dont have 12 kill points in your army then some of your units will be worth 2. I was at 11 kill points so I had to double up on something...and since I got to take a special character I decided I might as well make the SWARMLORD 2 kill points. This mission had a very strange deployment. Basically the person who won the dice roll got to choose with the long table edge, or setting up in the corner, the loser of the dice roll set up in the opposite. Thomas won the roll so he chose the long table edge and set his army up in the middle of the board. I in turned played a special even card which allowed me to go first and have 1D3 of my troops infiltrate. I rolled a "3" so all my troops infiltrated (as I have Hive Commander). So, I was able to bring everything in on turn 2 on a "2+" and was able to re-roll which side things came in on. Man I love the Swarmlord. Despite having all this stacked against him Thomas did a really good job at fending me off.
- Just being able to use the Swarmlord. I have never used him before and I have to say he is super fun. He has an ability to give one other unit within 18" either Furious Charge, Preferred Enemy or Acute Senses. When looking at those abilities you would assume you would NEVER use acute senses...but I proved many wrong as the first turn of the game was night fight and I used it on my Hive Guard. That special rule made them go from hitting nothing to blowing up the Space Marine Commanders Rhino.
- Having two Tyrants on the board was dealy. I was able to throw up 2 Paroxysms a turn, which was incredible.
- The Mawloc really did amazing this game. He came up hitting 2 squads of marines (about 6 marines in total) and a land speeder. I was super agressive and placed him about 5" from the board edge and managed to roll a "hit"
- The Zoans managed to really pull their weight this game. They came down on turn 2 and managed to "Hadoken" a Dread, Rhino and a whole slew of marines into the next Century
- The Hive Guard were also amazing this game. They blew up a Rhino, Land Speeder and a Dreadnought
- The warriors literally did NOTHING this game. The came in on the wrong side, this is even including the re-roll and were also a turn late. They were about 20" out at least from any action so I just had to hide them.
- This one belongs to Thomas 100%. Twice he rolled for difficult terrain to go up a level to get into hand to hand combat with my Zoanthropes. First a Dreadnought with a power fist and then a tact squad with a power fist. Each time he rolled he rolled a "1+2" so he couldnt make it up the level lol
Final Result: Victory. Despite having all the advantages in this game it was quite a bit closer then the final results show. If we were playing on even footing I have no doubt in my mind that Thomas would of beaten me. Thomas was a great player, did his turns quite quickly, was fun to play against and was really easy going, I voted him "Best Sport".
MEGA WORM KILL COUNTER
This game was a bit strange in both my mission and opponent. My opponent was an Ork player named Steve. We both thought it was really weird that both destruction armies were playing each other but because of what happened last mission he was taken over by an inquisitor so had to play for the good side. The mission divided up the board into 4 quarters and my deployment zones were the two opposite sides (from corner to corner) and his were the other two quarters. All but 500pts of my army could be set up in my main deployment area, while the rest was held in reserve. Anything that was held in reserve came in from the corner on the opposite side were I had 3 objectives. Steve was able to set up his entire army on the board except he was only able to have one vehicle. So naturally he took the trukk with a 10 man nob squad + the warboss (ugh lol) and his killa kans had to be held in reserve. Like a complete tard I opted to hold my entire army in reserve and have everything basically come out on the objective. When initially thinking about it, it SOUNDS like a great idea (aka play for the objective) but then when you see just how small of an area your guys com in on, it is almost impossible for stuff to fit on the field. Another thing of note is that the forces of Destruction did so well in the previous game that we unlocked our 1650pts lists. Since Steve was playing for Chaos he got it as well, so we were on 100% even footing.
- For the first time this tournament the warriors got into hand to hand combat and man o man they didnt disapoint. The unfortunate squad they assaulted was the Ork Nobs. On the turn they charged they killed 6 nobs (every last one failed their LD test on 3d6, so all instant death). After that they killed off a boyz squad, although the lone nob in the squad with a power fist managed to kill 3 (yes 3) of them before he bit it.
- My Spore Pod did the first bit of damage to something in all the games I have used it...it blew up the Nobs Trukk lol. Of course it "Kareend" like 8 inches away from my Mawloc and the rest of my army, so not the greatest result
- The Trygon really pulled his weight this game as he decimated the Warboss in hand to hand (did 5 unsaved wounds...god I love Adrenal Glands on this guy)
- Finally got to see the "Shokk Attack Gun" in action. It seemed to alternate being awesome, then being crap. First round it hit 16 (yes...16) Termagants. The second round it malfunctioned and hit his own squad. All in all, quite awesome.
- My Zoans did nothing this game. They did like 2 wounds to the Nobs and then proceeded to get assaulted by a squad of 30 boyz. This is the first game since the codex came out where I have actually lost this unit (so in over 20 games)
- The Raveners did NOTHING. They whittled down a bit of a boyz squad before the Ork Nob turned them into a fine paste with his power claw.
- Mawloc also did nothing. He popped up, killed 5 boyz, then got punked by the nobs (they did SOOO many wounds to him lol)
Final Result: Victory. By the end of the game Steve just couldnt get any of his scoring units to my side of the board. He did manage to complete a bunch of the secondary objectives though, so his next game (being back on Chaos' side) would be much improved. While I won the game I completed only 1 of the secondary objectives, so I had a feeling my next game was going to be very much up-hill.
MEGA WORM KILL COUNTER!
Trygon - 33 Mawloc - 15
The last game of Day 1 and it is of course against my Nemisis...the dreaded Space Puppies. This is the army I have been dreading all day, then I saw that Lawrence DIDN'T have a Rune Priest, so right off the bat I knew I had a chance. The main downside is the Imperial side completed almost all their objectives while the Chaos side dropped the ball, so he was playing at 1650pts while I was playing at 1400pts. Not a good start being down 250pts against your "Rock" army. This mission was a lot more straight forward then the last as it was just a Table Quarter's capture mission with the deployment being along the full board edge.
- The Trygon was a complete BEAST this game. By the games end he destoryed a Venerable Dreadnought, a unit that had 7 Grey Hunters and the Wolf Lord, then ran across the table and wiped out the last remaining scoring squad.
- The Mawloc also had a great game. He managed to actually DO something in hand to hand hitting all 4 attacks on a Sky Wolf pack.
- Warriors also did really well this game almost fully killing 2 x 10 man grey hunter squads
- 100% forgetting about the secondary objectives. The biggest one was all I needed to do was contest both of his objectives. So...instead of just deep striking the mawloc on the one quarter that was left wide open I opted to try and kill a land speeder that was immobilized. This was actually the single most bone headed thing I did the entire tournament, because if I did deep strike him like I had planned, I would of actually completed the two most important secondary missions. Having a model that was in each quarter and contesting both enemy quarters...sigh. The worst part is if I HAD contested them I would be playing at 1900pts the next game and would of been able to FINALLY see the Fex Unit in battle.
- The Hive Guard were just rubbish this game. They shot at a single land speeder 3 turns in a row and managed to just immobilize it and blow off the heavy flamer. Sigh lol
Final Result: Victory. Despite playing against my nemisis army and despite being down 250pts I actually ended up being exactly 2 models away from completely tabling him (just had 2 Rhinos left). I had only one scoring unit left (my untouched Termagants that were cowering in a building).
MEGA WORM KILL COUNTER!
Trygon - 43 Mawloc - 20
This game was played on the same table as my first game, so again, the entire place was burning, all terrain blocked line of sight and there were 3 objectives. Stefan was playing a Black Templars army which I have never played against, so this should be good. I was getting ready for the army wide "Preferred Enemy" vow then found out he had one that meant his army couldnt take cover saves and instead got a 6+ Invuln save. I also noticed his army was set up way more like a standard Ultramarines army, which seemed to 100% go against the strength of the Templars. I have to say after seeing what he had I thought I was going to roll him...but the strange thing is he really made it work. I was quite impressed with how well all the "strange" choices he made for his army actually seemed to work together. As far as the mission goes I also thought I was going to table him since he was such a shooting based army vs. a Tyranid horde that can hide all their MCs. Both sides last game managed to get enough objectives that we were playing at 1650pts this game. He did have an ace up his sleeve though as he got a secondary objective last game that allowed him to take a Special Character...and that was Brother Captain Stern. He is actually one of the Characters I wanted to see the LEAST as he has a table wide Psychic Hood that negates powers on a 4+, he can insta kill any of my models in hand to hand as he has a str 6 force weapon and he also has a power were he places the large blast template in hand to hand and it is str 5.
- Both the Mawloc and Trygon won me this game. The Trygon killed another huge swath of marines including the emporers champ, and the Mawloc managed to free up the Zoanthropes who were locked in combat which was the game winning move on my part.
- The Warriors really pulled their weight this game. They killed off the remains of the terminator squad that the Hormagants started in on (they would of killed them off but Stern blew them into the next century with Cataclysm), they also killed a 10 man squad that had a chaplain in it.
- By the end of the game I managed to kill every last troop model, so there was nothing he could do to win the game
- My Tyrant did a whole lot of just getting shot lol. He DID finish off stern, but didnt do anything else. Sadly this is what he has been doing pretty much the entire tournament, although his paroxysms have been quite awesome.
Final Result: Victory...just. So far pretty much every game this tournament was fairly evident that the nids were going to come out on top after about turn 2. Not this game though. If the game ended on turn 5 it would of been a draw. The only reason I won was because the Mawloc freed the Zoans up so they could warpblast the last 3 troops that were holding the objective so by the end of turn 6 he didnt have a single scoring model left on the board. It was a great game, super close as well. The most important thing is that both sides completed enough objectives that we would be able to use our 1900pts list for the last game.
MEGA WORM KILL COUNTER!
Trygon - 50 Mawloc - 21
The last game of the tournament with everyone playing their 1900pts list. At this point there were only 3 people in the entire tournament that have gone 5-0. Myself, a Demon player (i know right?) and a Space Wolf player name Nick. So, you can guess who I was playing. This time I wasn't going to luck out against the Space Wolves as Nick had easily one of the hardest lists in the entire tournament, for either side. He DID have a Rune Priest. He also had a lord on a Thunderwolf and a Wolf Priest that went in the Land Raider with his tooled out Wolf Guard Squad. To top it all off we were playing a mission that was incredibly hard for me to win, if not almost impossible. Basically, as the defender Nick had 3 armor 14 bunkers (aka they are basically immobile tanks) and he placed them about 10" away from his board edge while I was able to set up only 10" in (so we were 28" apart). All the while I had virtually NO terrain in between myself and him. I set up my army to make a push towards the far right bunker that had a unit of 10 Grey Hunters in it, then I was going to swing left into the rest of his army. The objective was kill points with bonus points for surviving Bunkers and I got bonus points for killing them.
- My Hormagaunts killed the 10 man Grey Hunter Squad without taking a casualty then almost managed to kill the Thunder Wolf Squad (which is sooo over powered lol)
- My Mawloc finally got a really good direct hit on the 15 strong Blood Claw pack that was out in the open and killed half the squad the turn he came up...that felt nice since it was the only thing he could attack for pretty much the whole game (everything else was in AV 14 bunkers)
- Sigh...where to begin? First off, I couldn't make a 3+ Save on my Carnifex Squad to SAVE MY LIFE. They died soley to living lightning and a small hand full of crack missiles (the squad was 2 Fexs and the Tyranid Prime).
- I placed my Spore Pod 11" in from my table edge to try and keep it out of harms way and I managed to roll 12" STRAIGHT BACK towards my table, it mis-happed and I rolled a '1'
- I was a millimeter out from getting the charge off for my warriors on the thunder wolf cav. When I looked at it I was for sure in, but Nick disagreed so I just let the matter drop. This allowed the Wolf Lord who was striking at Initiative 1 because of my Tyrant to get 6 wounds on the Tyrant (as he saved all 3 invuln saves on his last wound). The next round the warriors killed off the squad, but it was too little, too late.
Final Result: Loss. The final score was 7-6 for the Space Wolves. So, my pod scattering off of the table literally lost me the game. All in all it was a good game, super tight, and there were many places I could of taken it despite having everything stacked against my army. The only thing that bothered me about the game was the fact that I didnt get to fire a full salvo with my Carnifexs. It was the ONLY thing in the tournament I wanted to do...sigh lol. One thing I will say for Nick is that he is a really good player. He was patient, and very perceptive on my red herrings. I intentially moved a couple of units up, to hopefully draw out the Thunder Wolf cav so my hard hitters could take them out (namely the Hormagants and Warriors). He played his game very well and there is a reason he was one of only 2 players to go 6-0 for his games.
MEGA WORM KILL COUNTER!
Trygon - 54 Mawloc - 28
Final Faction Results - Chaos finished the tournament with a Major Victory. There were only a couple sectors that we didnt crush underneath our mighty heels. We also completed the only objective our players wanted to complete and that was to see Cadia BURN! If you look at the overall scores one thing you will notice is just how many more secondary objectives we accomplished. It is the main thing that seperated Chaos and the Imperium this tourney. We played as a team, they played as individuals like they were in a standard tournament...which this of course was not.
Final Tournament Result - First place on the Chaos side, and first place overall. Even though I lost my last game I still did very well in pretty much all the categories. I placed very high in Battle, Sports and Secondary missions and I also had the best painted score. One other thing I wanted to mention is that the 3 tyranid players placed 1st, 2nd and 4th overall and we took home Best Overall, Best Painted and Best General (so basically a clean sweep for Chaos). The 3 Tyranid armies had a combined battle score of 15 wins and 3 losses. After seeing this I find it funny how often you read on the web that the Nids are a second Teir army and aren't really competitive. From what I have experienced and seen from others I would have to disagree. One super classy thing that the organizers did is give the standard prizes for people who took the top spots, then they brought out a surprise table with prizes for everyone on the winning side. So all the chaos players got a $30 GW plastic kit. Very cool!
- My Army. Every tournament I go to I learn more and more about this army. I tried doing the Carnifex unit with easily the single best load out for their weapons and they were STILL trash. 470pts worth of models killed 28pts worth of marines. Awesome. I know I rolled poorly for them but I just can't see a world where they would do even remotely well. I mean, for only 70pts more I can have 2 Mawlocs AND a Trygon (so 18 MC wounds vs. 11..3 of which are T5)...and that set up is WAY better. After playing in this tournament I have done up my "final" list for competitive tournaments. I have a lot I need to paint but I think it will do very well.
- The Imerpial side should of been called "Space Wolves and Friends!". Seriously, of all the Imperium armies the most numerous were Space Wolves, followed very closely by Blood Angels. I am finding more and more the numbers of regular marine armies are going way down (other then Vulkan lists) and the numbers of Space Wolves are just going through the roof. I personally dislike this trend as Space Wolves are easily my least fav army to play against (well, them and Guard...*shudder* lol). They do everything regular Marine Armies do, but do it better, and in most cases cheaper. Thunderwolf Cav with a Lord is such an incredibly powerful unit (I had to dedidcate 620pts of my army just to get rid of 3 Thunder Wolves and a Lord) and only having to pay 140pts for a Long Fang squad with 5 Missile Launchers that can split fire is just silly. This of course is just my personal opinion :)
- The Tournament. This is the most fun I have had at a tournament. Period. I love the group feel as it really feels like you are playing for a larger goal...not just for winning your game. I found I was just as happy to see my fellow chaos players win their games as when I won my games. I also liked how you are voting for people that you aren't competing against (so chaos votes for the Imperial, and vice versa), so you never really run into "Zero Bombers" that you sometimes get at Hobby Tournaments. It was also cool how each game had little things that changed it up either with special event cards or army size. As I mentioned before it really makes you think on your feet and by no way puts the game out of reach for the people who are down on points (I won both my games were I was down on points). My only two complaints (if you could even call them that) would be to just iron out the missions a little bit. There were a couple that were a bit lop sided and very difficult for one side or the other to win. The second thing would be toning down just how powerful some of the event cards are. They should be minor, cool little buffs, not cards that basically hose your opponent (I had one were I made my opponent set up first, I went first AND I got to outflank/infiltrate an extra d3 troops...oh, and he COULDN'T steal the initiative). These are minor beefs though. Kyle said the next one will be in February and you can bet I will be there :)