Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Deathwatch Codex Review: Part 6- Elites

Part 6 of my Deathwatch Codex review will look at the Elites section of the codex. This is an area which has seen a few new units added and some improvements to some existing units from the codex. 

Primaris Apothecary
The Deathwatch finally get access to an Apothecary! You only get the Primaris version, though it would have been nice to have a normal version to join units in transports or take a Jump Pack. I'm not sure why they didn't include the normal option, it's not like the models are not available or the Primaris Apothecary is specific to the Deathwatch.

I'm not a big fan of taking the Apothecary in a "normal" Space Marine army, but I think there is a place for them in the Deathwatch. With such a small, elite army, every casualty counts, so having an Apothecary to revive members of squads or heal other Primaris models is a nice bonus to the army.

I see the Apothecary supporting backfield units, such as objective holding Veterans or models armed with long range firepower, such as Missile Launchers or Stalker Bolters. I have actually purchased a Primaris Apothecary to add to my Deathwatch army.

Tuesday, 22 May 2018

London 40k GT Shaming Player- Disgraceful

I really thought I was done with the London GT. Apologies to those who have no interest in this, normal blogging will resume tomorrow with my review of the Elites section of the new Deathwatch codex. 

Several hours ago, the London GT facebook page posted, publicly calling out one of the players on the stream for cheating and have banned him from all of their future events (we should all be so lucky). 

This is absolutely disgraceful!

First off, let me say that cheating or poor sportsmanship should be called out at these events. HOWEVER, to focus on this when they have not, to this point, issued a single statement or apology on the shambolic and disgraceful event that they have just run is an outrage.

I haven't watched the video, so don't know who is in the right or the wrong in the examples they have given. BUT, this game was played after game 3 on the Saturday, some of which didn't finish till 9.30 pm. At this point, both players had been gaming for over 12 hours each, on top of Friday's gaming, so I would have expected them to both be exhausted. I've played four games in one day at a tournament and was barely conscious by the fourth game.

Publicly shaming a single player to cover for your own gross incompetence is shameful. The 40k GT 2018 was an embarrassment to competitive 40k in the UK.

I don't often get mad about 40k, it is just a game we play for fun. However, having spent the time, effort and money to go to this sad excuse for a tournament has left me livid.

As a result the player has been banned from their events, so will not be attending next year's GT. I imagine many of the competitors at this year's GT will joining him. 

As I said, normal service will resume on the blog tomorrow, be sure to like and follow the Facebook page to keep up to date on all the news on the blog. 

Sunday, 20 May 2018

London 40k GT 2018 Review- Worst Tournament I've Attended

This past weekend, I attended the London 40k GT for the first time. Here is my review of the event, needless to say from the title, I did not think it went well!

Since moving down to Oxfordshire, I have been fortunate to find a lot of local 40k tournaments to attend, as well as a couple of great gaming clubs. With my close proximity to London, I figured I would attend the 40k GT, one of the biggest 40k events in the UK, if not europe, and test my skills against other great Warhammer players. 

I normally do these reviews after all my battle reports from the event and my own army review. However, you may have seen some of the controversy regarding the GT this weekend, so I thought I would share my own opinions on how it went and my experiences at the GT. 

I shared some of these over the weekend as they were occurring on my facebook page, so be sure to follow and like it to keep up to date on all the info on the blog. 

Opening Woes
The GT was held at the Olympic Stadium in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. 

I set off from Oxfordshire at 7.00 am on Saturday morning. The satnav said it would take about an hour and a half to get to the venue, with registration starting at 9.15 am. I set off so early due to the Royal wedding and FA cup final being on the same day in or near London. I was unsure how traffic would be that morning, so wanted to give myself plenty of time in case it was bad. I needed have bothered. 

There was little to no traffic on the way, so I arrived at the car park I was using (there is no parking facilities at the venue itself) about 8.45 am and headed over to the stadium. There was already a reasonably sized queue of gamers waiting to get in. 

As the doors opened at 9 am, there wasn't much movement from the line. It turns out that security were carrying out searches of all bag and miniature cases. At the start of the day, there were two people at the front door carrying this out. For hundreds of gamers, each with at least one backpack and miniatures case. They eventually added more staff to help with this, but it didn't speed things up too much. 

Friday, 18 May 2018

Battle Report 148- Deathwatch vs Aeldari

Today's battle report is the first outing for my Deathwatch with the new codex, taking on Doug and his Aeldari force, a mixture of Eldar and Dark Eldar units. 

I was excited for the new Deathwatch codex. I really like the look of the army and was excited to see what the new codex could do. For my first use of the army, I took a nice mix of units to test them out. I didn't take any Primaris Deathwatch yet, as I haven't had a chance to assemble and paint them up yet. 
I did a video preview of the army, going over the units I was taking and some of my thinking behind the list. 

My army consisted of:
Battalion Detachment
Watch Master- Guardian Spear, Banebolts of Xeryia (Relic), Lord of Hidden Knowledge (warlord trait) (M)
Watch Captain- Relic Blade, Jump Pack, Bolt Pistol (C1)
Kill Team 1- 8 Deathwatch Veterans, 2 Frag Cannons, 2 Storm Shields, Blackshield with Power Sword and Bolter, Bolters, Chainswords, Vanguard Veteran with Pair of Lightning Claws (KT1)
Kill Team 2- 5 Deathwatch Veterans with Stalker Pattern Bolters and Chainswords (KT2)
Kill Team 3- 5 Deathwatch Veterans with 2 Missile Launchers, Bolters and Chainswords (KT3)
5 Bikers- Twin Bolters, Storm Bolter (B)
Corvus Blackstar- Twin Assault Cannon, Hurricane Bolter, Blackstar Rocket Launcher, Infernum Halo Launcher. (CB)

Battalion Detachment
Librarian- Force Sword, Bolt Pistol, Null Zone, Might of Heroes (L)
Chaplain- Jump Pack, Crozius Arcanum, Bolt Pistol (C2)
Kill Team 4- 5 Deathwatch Veterans with Shotguns, Storm Shield and Chainswords (KT4)
Kill Team 5- 9 Vanguard Veterans with 3 Frag Cannons, Bolters and Chainswords. Terminator with Power Fist and Storm Bolter (KT5)
Kill Team 6- 5 Deathwatch Veterans with 2 Missile Launchers, Bolters and Chainswords (KT6)
Kill Team 7- 5 Deathwatch Veterans with 3 Meltaguns, Bolters and Chainswords (KT7)
5 Vanguard Veterans- Bolt Pistols, Chainswords (VV)

A good spread of units and Kill Teams to mix out the force. I went for two battalions to give me 13 command points in total. 
I went for all four characters to test them out and see how they performed in the list. I took a mix of kill teams, with many to teleport in using the Teleportarium stratagem. 

The Watch Master and Librarian would accompany Kill Team 1 in the Corvus Blackstar. I had three units of Veterans as backfield objective holders, two with Missile Launchers and one with Stalker Bolters. 

I was going to put the Meltagun Kill Team, Shotgun Kill Team and Terminator Kill Team in reserve, with the option to put the Vanguard Veterans and Chaplain in reserve. 

Thursday, 17 May 2018

Dark Angels Army List Analysis- London GT

With the London 40k Grand Tournament coming up this weekend, I thought I'd take a look at the list I am taking and how the army has been performing in practice games so far. 

The list that I am taking is:
Battalion Detachment, Dark Angels [1078 pts] +5 CP
HQ1: Azrael (180)- WARLORD- [180 pts] +1 CP
HQ2: Primaris Lieutenant (70)- Master-crafted Auto Bolt Rifle (4), Bolt Pistol (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0), Eye fo the Unseen (Relic)- [74 pts]
Troop1: 5 Scouts (55)- 4 Boltguns (0), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0). Sergeant has Boltgun (0) and Chainsword (0)- [55 pts]
Troop2: 5 Scouts (55)- 4 Boltguns (0), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0). Sergeant has Boltgun (0) and Chainsword (0)- [55 pts]
Troop3: 5 Scouts (55)- 5 Astartes Shotguns (0), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [55 pts]
Troop4: 5 Intercessors (90)- 5 Bolt Rifles (0), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [90 pts]
Troop5: 5 Intercessors (90)- 5 Bolt Rifles (0), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [90 pts]
Elites1: Primaris Ancient (69)- Bolt Rifle (0), Bolt Pistol (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [69 pts]
Heavy Support1: 10 Hellblasters (180)- 10 Plasma Incinerators (150), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [330 pts]
Heavy Support2: 5 Devastators (65)- Bolters (0), Heavy Bolter (10), Armorium Cherub (5), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [80 pts]

Outrider Detachment, Dark Angels [922 pts] +1 CP
HQ1: Sammael (183 pts)- [183 pts]
Fast Attack1: 5 Ravenwing Black Knights (230)- Plasma Talons (0), Corvus Hammers (0), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [230 pts]
Fast Attack2: Ravenwing Darkshroud (128)- Assault Cannon (22)- [150 pts]
Fast Attack3: 4 Ravenwing Bikers (100)- Twin Boltguns (8), Chainswords (0), 2 Meltaguns (34), Sergeant with Storm Bolter (2), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [144 pts]
Fast Attack4: 4 Ravenwing Bikers (100)- Twin Boltguns (8), Chainswords (0), Flamer (9), Sergeant with Storm Bolter (2), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [119 pts]
Fast Attack5: 3 Ravenwing Bikers (75)- Twin Boltguns (6), Chainswords (0), Plasma Gun (13), Sergeant with Storm Bolter (2), Bolt Pistols (0), Frag and Krak Grenades (0)- [96 pts]

10 Command Points total

Quite a balanced army, I feel. It has a lot of fire support elements, as well as some faster moving units for grabbing objectives and going after the enemy forces. Let's take a look at the units and see how they have been performing.

Army Special Rules
Grim Resolve is a great Chapter Tactics to have. Getting re-rolls of 1's to hit in the shooting phase if I didn't move is great for most of my army. A lot of the squads don't move around much, so getting free re-rolls helps to boost their damage output in the shooting phase. It's not of much use to my Bikers, but my infantry units benefit from it a fair bit.

The morale mitigation is also great. I can't lose more than one model to a failed morale test. In most units, this is not an issue, but it is great for the Hellblasters, meaning I can take a unit of 10 with little to fear from morale.

Jink is also great on the Bikers. While advancing reduces their firepower significantly (for the most part), the 4+ invulnerable save can more than make up for this. This allows my Bikers to focus on going after objectives and gives them a measure of protection against the enemy firepower. 

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Deathwatch Codex Review: Part 5- Fast Attack

Part 5 of my Deathwatch Codex review will take a look at the Fast Attack choices available to the army. 

Fast Attack
The Bike Squad got a nice points reduction from the index, going down to 29 pts each. That is only a couple of points over a normal Space Marine Biker, for which you get an extra attack and special issue ammunition.

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Deathwatch Codex Review: Part 4- Troops

Today's section of the Codex Deathwatch review will look at the Troops section. I imagine most of the Deathwatch army will be comprised of Kill Teams, so there will be a lot to talk about in this section. 

Deathwatch Veterans/Kill Team
In 7th edition, the Kill Team/Deathwatch Veterans were the core of the army. In 8th edition, they are still a strong choice, but have a bit of the shine knocked off them by the new boys in the codex, the Primaris Kill Team.

The good news is that the Deathwatch Veterans have got a bit cheaper. They were seriously overcosted in the index. Each Veteran now costs 16 pts per model (down from 19 pts per model). However, they now need to pay 1 pt for their Boltgun, taking each Veteran up to 17 pts. The cost of the Special Issue Ammunition (SIA) has now been folded into the wargear costs. This is great, as you now no longer need to pay for SIA if you take another weapon that doesn't use it.

Some of the more common weapon choices have now gone down in points. A Deathwatch Veteran with a Frag Cannon now comes in at 41 pts (down from 49 pts) and a Veteran with a Shotgun now comes in at 19 pts (down from 24 pts).

The Veteran squad has gotten a bit cheaper, meaning you can field a few more models in your army or take some extra wargear. A nice trick to look out for is that you can replace each Veterans Bolter with a Bolter and a Chainsword in the equipment list, essentially giving each Veteran 3 attacks in combat. You can also take a Shotgun and Chainsword, Combi-weapon and Chainsword, etc.

Monday, 14 May 2018

Deathwatch Codex Review: Part 3- HQ Units

Part 3 of my Deathwatch codex review will take a look at the HQ options that are available to the Deathwatch army.

HQ Units
The Deathwatch units are pretty much unchanged in choices, with the addition of some Primaris characters to the army. One of the big boosts in the HQ section is that more units can now take a Jump Pack. In the index, only the Watch Master had this option, leading to a serious lack of mobility for the characters outside of transport vehicles. Now, the Librarian and Chaplain have access to the Jump Pack, making it easier for them to support your units.

Watch Master
The Watch Master is pretty much unchanged from the Index version and still a pretty good option to lead the army.

He comes in at 130 pts, and has a Space Marine Chapter Master's stats, along with a 2+ armour save and 4+ invulnerable save, great for his durability. His Guardian Spear is a solid weapon. In shooting, it is a Bolter with S4, AP-1 and 2 damage per shot, plus it can use Special Issue Ammunition. This gives you the option of going up to AP-3, or AP-2 at longer range, or wounding on a 2+. In combat, he is S5, AP-3 and D3 damage per wound.

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Deathwatch Codex Review: Part 2- Stratagems

Welcome to part 2 of my Deathwatch Codex review. This part will take a look at the Stratagems now available for the Deathwatch army. 

The Deathwatch gain access to a number of the useful common stratagems available to the Space Marines, as well as some great new ones of their own. 

Armour of Contempt (1CP)- Use when a Deathwatch vehicle suffers a mortal wound. On a 5+, it ignores that mortal wound and any further mortal wounds suffered for the rest of the phase. 

One that probably won't be used all that often, but could come in useful every once in a while. I can see it being of use to the Corvus Blackstar. This vehicle is more likely to range ahead of the army, so will be the target of Smite attacks more often than other vehicles. If your opponent has a lot of smite or other mortal-wound dealing psychic powers, I can see this being a nice way to help the Corvus survive for a bit longer in a game. 

Auxpex Scan (2CP)- Use when an enemy unit arrives from reserve within 12" of a Deathwatch Infantry unit. The unit may shoot as if it was the shooting phase, but at -1 to hit. 

This is a powerful stratagem that gets even better when you factor in Special Issue Ammunition. Has the ability to seriously harm an enemy unit that arrives from reserve, damaging a potent threat before it has the chance to shoot or charge you. 

Armoury of the Watch Fortress (1CP/3CP)- Allows you to take one additional Relic (1CP) or two additional Relics (3CP). 

The standard stratagem allowing you to take extra Relics. I think this one could be quite useful to taking one extra Relic. As I said in the first part of the review, there are a couple of good relics worth taking, so I think it might be worth the command point. 

Saturday, 12 May 2018

Codex Deathwatch- Video Review

Thought I'd try something new on the blog today. I made a video review for the new Deathwatch codex. 

Don't worry, I'll still be doing my written reviews for the codex, the first part of which published today. If you are interested, take a look at the videos and see if you like them. I'll be looking for feedback on them as I move forward.