Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Closer Look: Part I

Welcome to this edition of A Closer Look. After interests in rules inspections were announced by many of the readers, I have decided to write on the subject. I have found in my readings of the tomb of knowledge that there are indeed several interesting quirks in the way rules are worded, as well as the general understandings of the player base on these. Long ago I wrote an article over the rolling of snake eyes and assaults through cover titles Pesky Snakes. These articles will follow the idea set forth by that and the readers to help bring a better understand of the rules.

In homage to the original post, I will make this article a double feature as well, both of which dictating the rules in depth. So without further a due, lets hit the books. Now If you will please open your Big Rule Books to page 33.

1. The Assault Phase
Now this is an entire section of rules directing players to act in a specific order and make crucial decisions which very well could decide the outcome of entire battles in the course of about 15 seconds. With that in mind we can understand that there are several things that need to be done, and simplifying this in our brains can often lead to misinterpreting of how actions should be done. So lets look how it all plays out in order.

Declare the assault
the player chooses who his unit(s) will strike, and measures after the declaration is made. If he's within (6" or less) from the target, he/she makes it and the assault continues.

Moving Assaulting Units
This is where the tricky parts start setting in. First off, remember all models from one assaulting unit must be moved before moving to another unit, and following all the normal rules for movement save the "1 inch from enemy models" rule. Start with the closest model to model distance, then proceed in any order. Remember that when assaulting, "Assaulting units must attempt to engage as many opposing models as possible with as many of their models as possible - no holding back!" This means when assaulting, you must base as many models as possible with as many of your own. This can lead to some interesting tactics when it comes to double and triple assaults.

Defenders React
The models here must move up to 6" in an attempt to close the gap. It does state that this move is identical to the assaulting move, so you must attempt to base as many possible, with as many of your own.

Now we have seen how the pre-fight goes. Let us skip now to the end. If the fight is still raging on even after the first round of the fight, a Pile In Move is required. This says that all non-based models must move up to 6" in the same way as the before mentioned assault move. The unit that assaulted in piles in first, followed by the defending player.

After a fight is over, and the winner is determined, they generally have to make a consolidate move. This is an option movement that happens immediately after the combat is resolved. It is a D6" movement in any direction (not slowed by terrain). Other rules like the "1 inch from enemies" rules still apply.

These are the movements required for the assault phase. Simple and easy once the reading has taken place, but the actual movement of specific models is always a factor. A character usually finds a little reluctance in the assault when the daunting threat of the power fist looms. However, if the unit wielding the Fist is based by a member of the assaulting unit, the threat to the character is eliminated. Movement may have it's own section of the game, but do not underestimate it's use in all three of the battle's phases.

2. Disembarking
This is an interesting point that I found intriguing as I read through the Big Rule Book. On page 67 of the BRB it talks about disembarking from a transport vehicle. After reading this several times to myself, and speaking with both Heretic and Ishamael on the matter, we found an interesting use of words which leads to an interesting way to play.

First off let us debunk the example picture listed. It depicts a rhino and the 2" markers for each point. However, after taking several measurements with multiple types of measuring devices, the picture is in fact incorrect. So moving on, lets get to the meat and taters.

The rule for disembarking reads as follows:

"When the unit disembarks, each model is deployed within 2" of one of the vehicles access points, and within unit coherency.

Stop! Lets read this more closely. The disembarkation is not movement, nor does it follow or is it bound to the rules of movement. The models are "Deployed" and as such this follows the rules for Placement, not Movement. Now as I mentioned above, the picture in the big rule book isn't exactly correct. After measuring the hull of a rhino, it is possible to place a model smack dab in the center of the front of the vehicle if you measure over the hull itself. Since the unit is not moving that distance, but rather is being deployed within the distance stated (2") it may deploy there as it is following the rules as written. It is uncommon that this will come up, but it is an interesting possibility the rules allow.

I hope you enjoyed this edition of A Closer Look.


Sunday, August 29, 2010

Reader Choice.

I want to get the readers involved here at RoB, so while pondering on the idea of my next topic I had an epiphany. I want you guys to give me a topic (or several topics) you'd like to hear / read about.

Please remember to keep things appropriate if possible, but other than that I leave this open to anyone. If you are one of the many people who read but never comment (our Lurking Members if you will :P ), I encourage you to join in here. Remember this can be anything (conversation, rules topic, unit review, and even battle reports). So with that I look forward to the topics you all bring to the table, and I will do my best to write on all subjects brought up.


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

What Next?

So as my Templar are nearing completion, I have been pondering on my next move. I really enjoy my army, and I still plan to add little bits here and there to really finish up the army for just about every play style I am wanting to fill. The last units on my list are these.

Scibor Templar Marshal Model, storm shields, and vehicle upgrades
Land Raider Crusader
Sword Brethren Models (The old metal ones... love em)
Tactical Squad w/ Templar Upgrades

Once all these models are complete and finished I will be finished with my Templar... or at least as far as I want to take them at the moment. So with that I've been looking around for ideas on what my next move is... these are the options I have chosen.

1. Waaaaaaaagh!
So I do Love me some Orks. I know there are a few people around here selling off some of them for cheaps, and I could snag a black reach to help get off the ground.

I am also diggin' the ridiculous amount of Forgeworld support this army has as I would plan to buy a few of their pieces to use as standard models. I would probably snag the boss on bike as I am a huge fan of the speed freekz and I would love to grab some of the rumored new buggies coming soon.

2. The Nords
I had an idea to make a pseudo pirate/raiders army. It would involve the use of the fantasy chaos models as a base, and adding some nice Scibor models for Lords and for detailed spice. The idea isn't that they are marines, but rather they are Celtic warriors who have no true home.. so they ravage the wastes of the edge of the galaxy preying on weak settlements and the like. They are broad and bulky humans with nothing to loose and they have no fear of death... as life for them is hard. They survive by looting what they need to battle the next enemy and take their spoils of war. Think orcs/Wolves/chaos for them. To answer a nagging question, they would run out of the Chaos Space Marines codex.

It would also allow me to use the above mentioned Scibor minis as lords... I really like this one :)

3. From the Tombs of the Ancient Race.
Always have loved these robotic killing machines, I just have not enjoyed the lack of support by both GW and forgeworld. I'm not sure what makes me want to try this army yet again, but I suspect it may have to do with the rumor that they are on the horizon for an update. I love the feel, and the look... just not the lack of hobby that I find with them. I would try to play them in an unconventional manner, which uses a lot of smaller units of warriors spread out and hidden, while using 1 or 2 monoliths and some alternative units to give the army some kick. I like Scarabs, destroyers, and I had thought of running pariahs since they never seem to see play. I do like these guys and they are seriously vying for my attention.

4. The Dark Eldar!
Yes I know these guys are old, and the only way I would run them is with the new codex... as I am not terribly fond of the older models, nor the only tactic that seems rather forced on the army itself.

That being said, they were my first army and I do extremely love their fluff, as well as their feel of fast but vulnerable. Archons are my favorite unit in the entire game... but then again the rest of the army as a whole still fails to have much GW or Forgeworld support yet. As of now they are on the back burner since I have heard talk from others in my group that they may be interested in starting these pirates as well, and I enjoy running unique armies :P

So what do I do. I'll take a poll here and now, asking you the readers. What army do you think your friendly Loki should undertake next? This may not happen for a little bit, but i want to know what you all think. Have at it!


Friday, August 20, 2010

Plastic vs. Pewter!

So during an adventure to the keep this afternoon I had an interesting conversation over the differences of Pewter and Plastic (besides the obvious fact that they are indeed different material). While I am a staunch believer that Pewter has a place (i.e. Independent Characters... and nothing more) some believe that the material is better as a whole for the hobby community. So trying to be as objective as I can lets delve into the world of materials!

First off we'll take a look at detail. Pewter being a denser and harder metal it is a great way to get every little detail that makes those beautiful character models shine. Of course it is necessary for the characters amongst the sometimes endless hordes of models to be highly detailed as it adds a nice breath of detail. But even though the pewter models tend to have more detail involved within the model, is it not possible to reach a high level of quality with the use of plastic? I would argue a resounding yes to this question. I have two specific examples of situations in which plastic models have a beautiful level of detail. First being the new Blood Angels models including both the Death Company and Sanguinary Guard boxes. Both have an exquisite level of detail involved. The second being the Space Hulk Terminators. Now I know they are made from a different, softer plastic, however they are still plastic (and the reason for my first more "relevant" example), but I don't think there is a 40k enthusiast out there that can say those models aren't of some of the highest quality models (in the realm of detail mind you) around. Now again Pewter has an incredibly high level of detail to bring to the table, but with the new quality level of models coming from GW being on the level of the new Blood Angels and Space Wolf models, I have high hopes for the future of models to come.

Score out of 10
Pewter: 8
Plastic: 7

Next I'll take a look at cost. This is a hands down win for plastic. The relative cost gap per model between the two is shrinking, but plastic still maintains a better average. Most plastic boxes players need to look into for army building contain about 10 models for around $35. Metal models that are used to make units (such as the Sternguard Veterans or Tank Busta Orks) average at about $35 for 5. Easy math here as that shows pewter going in about double the cost. And as many of us are aware, these metal models offer little options, if any... This is a major down side for those boxes, where the plastic kits are not only jam packed with options, they also allow the modeler an easier time in the conversion side of things. Though metal units hold a high level of detail in most cases, as well as the fact armies generally require less of these units, it is not enough. In my opinion plastic is a hands down winner when it comes to cost.

Score out of 10
Pewter: 4
Plastic: 8

Next lets ponder about the idea of customization. Once again, I find plastic to be a much more user friendly material in this case. The softer and more mailable nature allows us to customize with little effort, where metal models require a bit of concentration and work to make even the slightest of changes. Though people have made some beautiful models from both metal and plastic frames, from my experience the plastic generally works much better as a starting point for making a custom model.

It is possible however, to make a good custom model from a metal frame. Here is one shining and badass example.

In a game that is about 50/50 between hobby and game, I look at plastic as a generally helpful and easy to use material when it comes to making models look like they belong to my army, and with that in mind I find the use of the old metal as something that is really hindering the process of expanding to newer and more beautiful details.

Score out of 10
Pewter: 3
Plastic: 9

Another aspect I want to delve into is the concept of durability. Now before I go on you should put on a helmet and faceplate to help keep a clean room when your mind is blown... or not. Metal models are the extreme definition of fail in this category! Even though the material itself doesn't break nearly as easily, it's ability to be a hardy model is lacking severely. Metal models tend to chip very easily as the hard metal doesn't fuse with the base coat nearly as well as its more porous plastic counterpart. This is rather odd as the game itself demands a large amount of durability when it comes to paint jobs. As a model is used more and more, it may be needed to occasionally refurbish a little detail here and there.

Dropping a model is also very common with some players, and where plastic (much like the base coat) tends to fuse with the glue... metal simply holds on till the pressure becomes to great, and in a horrifying "for f*ck sake!" moment... when you drop a model, the plastic ones tend to bounce a little, have a scratch in the paint, but keep on going. Metal ones hit the ground... and an explosion of bits sprays in every direction.

As shocked as I am saying this... metal has a hard time keeping pace with plastic in this field as well.

Score out of 10
Pewter: 2
Plastic: 7

So I know this seems like a one sided argument coming from me, but from my years of gaming, and research into the topic... I do find a consistent difference between the two with plastic holding up the 1st place ribbon in the end. As a hobby material, and one that is subject to the wear and tear of game play, it holds up as a more valuable asset to have. I enjoy Plastic models both in hobby, and game play form. What are your thoughts and opinions on the matter? And do either hold much of a chance with the rise of resin? Just food for thought.


Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Comparing Apples and Oranges Part 1

by Ishamael

So, this is going to be a quick overview of what I've experienced so far playing a little trial of Star Craft 2. Once I purchase the game and get some time under by belt, I'll be expanding on this.

So, I've decided to bring myself to do a difficult thing, as has been shown in the title. How do I compare two fruits of different variety? Since this is a preliminary consideration, this is going to be very rough. For the purposes of consideration, I'll be breaking this review into two sections: Campaign and Multi-player. For Dawn of War 2 it will be the Chaos Rising campaign.


When it comes to a recap of what happened before one begins either campaign, the presentation of Dawn of War 2 feels as if anyone can pick up the game and know what is happening. For Starcraft 2, however, the backstory is told during the installation process with a voice-over, and the subsequent cinematics don't do much to get someone that did not play the original game (me) fired up about playing. Some spesh mehreen doing something...space rednecks. Yet, when the campaign finally begins, Blizzard's powers of presentation and characterization come forth in a huge way. You're an outlaw in a bar, who is sitting drinking, and there is a T.V., video box, and a few other random things to click to get information. Also, Blizzard's ability to make jokes shines through with a Tyrazerg's skull hanging on the wall...with festive lights dangling from it. When it comes to the way DoW2 handles this...you've a planetary overview, with your various options of deployment and wargear shown, and there's a newer feature with the option of hearing what your brothers think on the situation you're being thrown into. It's far better than the way it was done in DoW2's first campaign, but the inside of a Battle Cruiser would be better...or the inside of a Drop Pod...or a Thunderhawk...or anything. Straight up, the mission selection window in Starcraft 2 far surpasses what was done for Chaos Rising. Did I mention you get to go to different levels of the ship in SC2? Y'know, to the bar to buy mercenaries? Unfortunately, until I purchase the full game I can't go much beyond this, but so far the presentation of Starcraft 2 is by far more immersive than in Chaos Rising.


I can speak a little more on this than the campaign. And by that I mean compare. For the reader, ask yourself this: when it comes to the Real-Time Strategy genre, do you like resource gathering and base building, or do you prefer getting into the action immediately, where battlefield control is how you gain resources? This is the first hurdle for the gamer trying to compare these two very different games. Let me start with declaring that what little I played of the Starcraft 2 campaign does, in NO way useful, help me play the multi-player. At least I play with the same units in the Dawn of War 2 multi-player. Anyway, let's start with how each game begins. As soon as you're in DoW, you send your units to capture two forward points, and make another unit to help capture/fight another point. In SC2, you send your builder units to start harvesting, and make another builder to help your resource rate. Then you build your barracks, then build your basic infantry, and let me tell you, it takes a long time to build any unit in this game. This holds true to everything, especially when one researches unit upgrades. Once those units get produced, when combat finally happens the player notices one major thing: units die really quickly in SC2, and certain units are Super Effective! against others. Also, only certain units can fire at flying units. It's like playing Pokemon with paper cutouts. In DoW2, there are weapons that give advantages against certain other units, but at least you have the option to purchase a flamer or missile launcher. Along with this, regardless of whether you've Space Marines or Guardians, there's at least a feeling that the unit can survive a bit of combat, which is a farcry from the squishies of SC2. Also, DoW2's cover system greatly affects this, extending a squad's potential lifespan greatly whether or not they're in heavy/light cover, or within the confines of a building. At any rate, I think this basic overview of the Campaign and Multi-Player will suffice for now.

Next time I'll talk more on analyzing the multi-player, with emphasis on the character/suppression system for DoW2, and the importance of build-order in SC2.

Non-sequitur: Brandon Sanderson has completed Towers of Midnight! On November 2nd, the real lead up to Tarmon Gai'don begins!

Messias non est,

Monday, August 16, 2010

Dark Eldar Poison

I am sure that everyone has heard the rumors about the new Dark Eldar that said to be coming out soon. Personally I’m looking forward to seeing all the new toys the Dark Eldar get as they haven’t gotten a new codex since 1999. For perspective the Tau have come into existence and gotten a new codex during the time that the DE have been running off the same version. So today I’m going to take a look at what is one of the most basic core parts of any army: the basic gun. The marines have the bolt weaponry, the IG their flashlights, the elder their shurikens, and the Tau have the fancy S5 guns. First up you guys have to understand that I don’t have any fancy insider sources (yet) so all the information here is based on the rumors already floating around the net and therefore must be taken with a grain of salt. The rumors about the basic weapons seem to be pretty much confirmed at this point, but nothing is certain until the codex is actually out.

Now onto the actual discussion: poisoned weapons. It seems that the standard shot will be a S3 poisoned (4+) AP5 that comes in a sidearm 12” pistol version, the standard 24” rapid fire version, and a heavy versions. So what does this mean? It’s the poisoned part that matters. The 4+ means that the shot will always wound on a 4+ regardless of the targets toughness, but if the target’s toughness is equal to or less than the strength of the weapon (3) then the failed rolls to wound can be rerolled. This is a pretty big improvement over the old splinter weaponry set which was a rather plain S3 AP5 with no gimmicks.

So what does this mean for the game? It depends on the race being shot. Marines and Orks won’t care at all, albeit for different reasons. Marines (and Necrons too) because they are used to being wounded on a 4+ and their power armor lets them shrug it off and Orks because they are used to being outright killed on a 4+. IG infantry are going to hate it because while they be used to being killed on a 4+ or even a 3+ they aren’t used to being killed on a 4+ that rerolls, increasing the kill rate to 75% of all hits compared to the 50% of non poisoned S3 and the 66% of S4. The Eldar and Tau aren’t going to be terribly pleased either, because while they do still get their armor saves, the reroll due to poisoned means that they are going to be making a lot more of them. Even the Tyranids have reason to worry as their defense is typically based on their high toughness rather than their armor save. And to poison weapons T6 might as well be T4. Tyranid warriors in particular could be feeling a lot of pain when they start taking wounds on 4+ from the most basic gun in the army.

So what do you guys think that this means for your army and style of play? For me and my BAs I don’t think much will change, but then again I am considering starting a DE army if I like the final feel of the army so maybe I’ll have to come up with some new tactics to work this new type of gun.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Double Header Weekends

So the folks here are gearing up for something we've never had before. We have not one but two tournaments approaching, hints the double header. We have usually been able to host our events with a fair bit of time between us and our friendly rival group down in Bloomington. However, due to a scheduling conflict with many of our local gamers, we had to postpone the event until this coming weekend. With only a week between our event and Bloomington's, we're sure to have some grand stories of battle fatigue... or maybe not :D

We hope to see everyone there, and we invite any of our readers (near or far) to join us. Check out the link to our gamer group, and look for more detailed stories to come in soon.


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Get to the Choppa!

Hello Everyone! I thought I would give you guys a sneak peek at the latest addition to my Templar Crusade. I have always wanted to do a simple mod to a unit of bikes that would really make them stand out on the table top. I wanted them to look like a little more personality was added to them than just the standard bikers that one sees in many Space Marine armies out there. And I must say I think it worked out rather well.

I started with the basic components to make the bikes using the Space Marine Bike box (which comes with enough to make 3 bikers, and includes 3 metal torsos [a sergeant with power weapon, a plasma gun, and a melta gun]) and added a few extra bits from my Templar conversion sprues. The real addition was the inclusion of the plastic tubes about 1/8 inch in diameter.

After removing the bits from the sprues, I cut the front wheel housing from the main body and cleaned off the original poles down to a flat even surface on both sides. I then cut the plastic tube into 1" long segments and attached them to the bikes to increase the length of the poles and attached the front wheel. And presto chango I now have Choppers!

Now I has added an addition light between the bars at the base of the front armor plate that houses the twin linked bolters as I felt the bars looked to flimsy to be on bikes for war. It adds some bulk to the front and I really like how it turned out. I am working on an attack bike to add to the unit, but I may not run it as it is an expensive upgrade for the unit. I can't wait to get the paint on these guys and get them on the table. I may try them out in the lesser point games and the really high point games, but my 1500-2000 lists are pretty solid right now. But who knows. I may fall madly in love with them and run them all the time :D


Monday, August 9, 2010

The Forgeworld Wish List

So I know there is a lot of love that we the 40k gaming community have for this company, and of course the hatred we have when they flaunt those beautiful models with the price tag that would make a flash git cry. Having choices ranging from simple accessories, to amazing looking single units, clear up to entire armies, it seems that this company has everything one could wish for. Or do they?

I have been pondering a few little models that they have as a starting point for the next army I may start, but as of right now I'm not happy. I haven't found any real must have units for a long time. I know there are things that I wish could be on there from some of the fluff, as well as the chance for them to make beautiful models for older units (the old GW Sword Brethren models still look great, but having new resin ones would make me a very happy panda... in fact any real Templar options besides doors would be great), and other older types like the warp spiders, and perhaps more Necron love than just the pylon (which require more to be constructed of course).

And of course we all know that there are certain armies that seem to be the very core of this company's being. For instances... Orks. It seems the line up for their production is something along the lines of Orks, Space Marines, Orks, Eldar, Orks, Orks, Space Marines, Orks, Orks, Tau, Orks, Orks, Orks, Space Marines, Orks, Orks, Orks, Orks... Orks.

I know they have some fun features to look at, and each bit has a story to tell... but I think they have more than enough options as it is I would personally like to see some armies out there get something other than one or two options, of which one or both of which being rhino doors.

Then there are some options that are now just not really worth it. That's right, I'm looking at you Eldar! With the new Prism/Spinner boxes put out by GW (which are beautiful!) these Forgeworld alternatives are only expensive bad decisions. For a quick comparison, let's take a look

Now while the Forgeworld option doesn't look "bad" it's more expensive, more hassle, and in my opinion not even as good looking as the new plastic version. And the Spinner isn't the only unit that felt this hit. This means that many of the options for Eldar are just not worth the time (baring the amazing looking Avatar).

As it all comes down to what they decide to make next, we can only hope it will be for our army. Their recent production of older marine armor is a great chance for those pre-heresy armies to get some accurate models. But I really hope it is over soon, and the production of more usable and varied units hits us soon.

Do you have any hopes for future Forgeworld merchandise? My personal hope is for just about anything Black Templar related, as I think Forgeworld could make a beautiful character or unit regardless. But, until they do, I can only hope.


Friday, August 6, 2010

It's all coming back to me...

Though I'd like to I'm not talking about the world's most famous bent stick weapon, an old cartoon network spin off nor a great Magic card. No, this is just putting out my thoughts about an interesting trend in the 40k Metagame that I've seen around the Keep and the internet to some degree: the return of the foot based army.

Now some people, most vocally Stelek, have proclaimed foot armies dead, long live mech! For the purposes of this article Mechanization will refer to the idea of mechanized infantry, units of foot soldiers in some type of transport. Mechanization has some serious advantages and disadvantages that our own Loki has covered recently, but I am here to neither to bury mechanized armies nor to praise them. A relatively new member of our group plays one of the nastiest foot based lists I've seen and looking at how he runs it will help me illustrate what I think a good foot based army needs to bring down King Mech.

First let's look at what the list included (before it incorporated vehicles): twenty or thirty harlequins, three wraithlords, pathfinders and a farseer and Eldrad. The most apparent advantage that mechanization provides an army is protection from shooting and assaults, but there are ways around this. Harlequins are a fantastic example of how this is not necessarily exclusive to mechanization. The Shadowseer's Veil of Tears rule can almost entirely protect the unit from shooting by forcing units to roll 2D6x2 for a spotting distance to shoot at the unit while their initiative 6 means they strike before most anyone else. But let's say you don't have such an amazing rule; how do you keep your units alive then?

Well, having a high toughness value helps. Toughness 4 is just about par for 40k, but there are a lot of units like bikers, plague marines and wraithguard that can rely on their higher toughness to protect them from most small arms fire. This is the simplest way to avoid getting hurt by small arms fire while getting across the board, but can be very restrictive if this is how your troops plan to survive as these units are usually rather expensive, both in dollars and points. The more common approach is illustrated by the pathfinders.

While they do have special rule that allows them to take peculiarly great advantage of cover, any unit can be moved in such a way as to generally get a cover save. A guardsman is usually easy to kill but if that guardsman is standing behind a conscript they can be almost as difficult to kill as a space marine if they go to ground. A well built board should have at least 25%, some say more, of its area declared difficult or area terrain in order to provide cover saves. This gives a foot army a place to stay if they want to gain some protection while slowing them, and most anyone down.

The other advantage of mechanization is mobility, which effects shooting armies and assault armies differently. An assault foot army can use bikes and jump packs to move just as fast, and in the case of bikes faster, as they could in a mechanized army. Admittedly, these units usually use assault or open topped transports so they can assault out of it, gaining about two inches from their disembarkation. Until they are in assault range, these units and any others can forgo their shooting to run D6 inches. The Black Templar have their own twist on this as their Righteous Zeal allows them to "run" in the enemy shooting phase if they take a casualty. Usually running means that the unit cannot assault, but several codices have access to units with the Fleet USR that allows assaults after running. Against another assault army, congratulations, whether mechanized or on foot two assault armies will help each other get closer and mobility for the foot assault army becomes less important.

For a shooting army mobility is important not to necessarily defeat enemies, but usually to escape from them or to take midfield objectives in Seize Ground games. Getting assaulted is not a horrible thing if you can control who gets assaulted. For the Tau and Imperial Guard the Kroot and Conscript squads serve the same role of meat shields. If done properly, an assault unit will assault this unit, kill it and promptly be shot with rapid fire shots from the rest of the shooting army. These units will provide cover saves going either way until they die, but that is a worthwhile trade off to prevent the first assault hitting units that actually matter. A foot shooting army does not need to necessarily be mobile, at least not more than to get a squad or three onto a point late game. They stand and shoot, rinse and repeat until the enemy is off the table or they are.

I hope this long winded article has given you something to think about in regards to the viability of a foot based army list in the current 40k metagame landscape where you play. I would love to hear what you think, even if you think I'm an idiot for thinking foot armies are still viable.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Into the Black Library: Helsreach

So I have been enthralled by a new purchase of mine. After a trip to the bustling city of Indianapolis, I snagged Black Library's Helsreach novel. It is the first time I have ever purchased a book from the 40k universe... and I must say it has been one of the most rewarding experiences and best reads I've had since the old Halo novels came out.

Helsreach covers the Black Templars during their time in the Armageddon campaign, and more specifically it follows Grimaldus during his rise to the rank of Reclusiarch and his actions on the surface of the industrial world.

I have had a hard time putting this one down, and even though I am a slow reader, it has been simply amazing so far, and I haven't even reached the conflict yet. Black Library has really done a beautiful job capturing the feeling of the universe, and I feel like I have gotten a more intimate understanding of the Grimaldus character. I own the model, and will more than likely be painting it soon after this read... not to mention this book had a hefty hand in shaping my list for an upcoming tournament (Guess which HQ I'll be using [along with the Emperor's Champion of course :P]).

If this book is anything like the others, and I would assume it is, they are defiantly worth the price tag. If you know of a book Black Library has done concerning your army of choice, I would highly recommend them if nothing else to get a great first hand feeling of what makes your army tick. If you have any recommendations I would love to hear them here. Till then, I must get back to the book. I'm stoked to see this war start!


Sunday, August 1, 2010

Alternative Options

Hello everyone. With GW's continual raising of prices I think we're all wondering when the day comes they'll be asking triple digits for the Land Raider... That being said, I will give them props for the quality level of their products. Having played since second I was used to the old "gimme a hug" feeling models... you know the ones... the ones with the weapons on each side of their body making them feel very 2-dimensional. Now looking at the new models like the Blood Angels Death Company box, and the Space Wolf boxes, it's easy to see the quality is improving.

But all of these models suffer from the GW price tag. That being said there are a number of great sites to fall back on. One such site is the Scibor website. They have a number of models that (unfortunately for us) are not available for sale, however, there are a good number of items that are. These models range from fantasy to sci-fi (40k) and have a unique feel that is just amazing. They have bases for models that are simply incredible, and conversion parts that cover both tanks and infantry.

The quality is second to none and I have placed an order for some of the Templar items on their list as they are just too pretty to ignore. I will say that without a doubt this site should be one of your first stops when looking for alternative models to fit into your army. They're adding more and more every day to their already impressive store so it may not be to far away before an item for your army comes around (if it isn't already there).

For your consideration I've posted a link to their website and a few pictures for you to view.


Scibor Main Page