Saturday, 1 May 2021

Hobby Diary Part 5: Iron Snakes and Blood Angels vs Chaos Daemons (1500 points)


Hi folks,

Last night I had a 1500 point game of 9th Edition 40K with Sgt Waz and The Trooper. Wade and I each had 750 points worth of Space Marines. Wade had some of his usual Blood Angels, including Mephiston, Hellblasters, Agressors and Intercessors, as well as a Librarian Dreadnought. I know from experience how fast and hard the two psykers could be, so I was happy to have them on my side for once. I took my Iron Snakes, including my Master of the Forge, Relic Contemptor, Intercessors, Sternguard with combi-plasma and an Eversor Assassin. The Master of the Forge and Contemptor have proven to be a powerful combo in previous games, so I wanted to get some more practise in with them.

We never quite know what Sgt Waz is going to bring to the table. He is often painting new armies for close friends/family and will sometimes bring something weird along. I was thinking that he may bring some kind of Chaos Marine soup with Abaddon, marines and maybe even a Knight. So when he rocked up with a full Daemon World army I was not surprised by my surprise! The list had a large Slaanesh contingent supported by two large blobs of Bloodletters (led by U'Zhul the Skulltaker). The Slaanesh contingent included several medium sized blobs of Daemonettes, with a Keeper of Secrets, Shalaxi Helbane (a Keeper of Secrets special character) and Syll'Eske, a daemon prince/daemonette duo that doubles down on buffs, fights twice in the fight phase (usually at the start and at the end, unless you target them for shenanigans) and a whopping great strength 8 axe.

We decided on the Eternal War Mission "Hold the Centre", with four objectives arranged in a Z configuration, with two down the centreline. Victory point are gained progressively, 5 per objective controlled to a cap of 15, with a bonus 3 or 5 points up for grabs if you can perform an action at one or two of the objectives along that centreline. The Trooper and I started to formulate strategies and deploy accordingly. Which was a complete waste of time. 

You can see my Iron Snakes to the left, positioned to hold an objective, direct fire through the gate and flank/take the high-ground with my Intercessors, with perhaps a late game capture of loose objectives. The Blood Angels had a small force anchored by Mephiston holding a centre objective, and a potent left flank in position to challenge an objective in the back field. I deployed my Eversor in a position that would help deny the Keeper of Secrets from blocking this force. I didn't have any idea at this stage just how damn fast they are...

Sgt Waz won the first turn and after moving his forces, it was clear that we would be receiving charges on turn one, in our deployment zone. My tactic with the Eversor worked, meaning I had two greater daemons heading my way. I judged that I would probably have better luck firing overwatch with my Intercessors, and with the help of Bolter Fusillades, managed to cut the incoming Daemonettes down a bit.

Everything except the second Keeper made its charge roll. The daemonettes hit me first, taking down some of my Intercessors, but nothing too bad. I immediately burned two CP to choose the next fight and got my Contemptor to hit Shalaxi, causing 9 wounds. The return attacks brought my Drednought down to 1 wound, which I considered a win! I lost two Sternguard to Daemonette attacks and the Blood Angels Intercessors were cut down by the axe of Syll'Eske.

The Daemonettes on my flank failed their morale check and, being below half strength, suffered two more deaths due to attrition. It just shows how fragile they are, despite being so fast and deadly. I would have been really happy with the result, if I hadn't remembered at that moment that I still hadn't even had a turn yet and I was stuck in my deployment zone trying to strip wounds off two Greater Daemons.

As our first turn started, Shalaxi used a special ability to paralyse Mephiston for a turn. With my Contemptor under the effects of the Witstealer sword, and my Master of the Forge really not cut-out for close combat, our reasonable options for dealing with these huge threats were all but spent. The Master healed 3 wounds on the Dreadnought, which I hoped would see it through another round of combat. I fired A LOT of pistol shots, whittling down even more daemonettes.  My Eversor, now the only friendly unit likely to ever make it out of the deployment zone, headed for a pack of daemonettes in the middle of the board, taking a few out with his pistol and then charging later in the turn. Wade's Blood Angels poured out as much firepower as they could, while his Librarian Dreadnought grew psychic wings and charged Syll'Eske. Shalaxi destroyed my Dreadnought easily, Syll'Eske copped a bunch of wounds but gave a lot of punishment in return. The Eversor dodged all of the daemonette attacks and took down 7 with its Neuro gauntlet.

During Sgt Waz's turn, Skulltaker charged my Eversor, Shalaxi and the second Keeper of secrets attacked the Blood Angels and the close combat phase was brutal. The Eversor died, blew up and took three Bloodletters and two Daemonettes with him. The two Keepers wrecked everything they touched, though the Dreadnought Librarian did cause some wounds before crumbling under the weight of over twenty unsaved wounds itself. Syll'Eske never made it out of that combat; having a less than inspiring save was their downfall.

In our second and last turn, my Master of the Forge stepped out and took off the last wounds from Shalaxi, with his FLAMER of all things. Try as we might, we just could not take down the second Keeper of Secrets. If it fell, the handful of Hellblasters, my remaining Intercessor and the Agressors may have been able to get some victory points over the next two turns, but with that monster stomping our backline, we were ready to call the game.

The game was fun to play, and I can see that it is possible to bring an army like this down, but it was a complete rout for us, the moment the armies were chosen. Small boards certainly do make the game go faster, but several armies gain a huge advantage form this, and Slaanesh daemons are one of them. They have high movement, can advance and charge on the same turn, and their Greater Daemons are very hard to take down due to their de-buffs and saves. I would definitely play against them again, but perhaps on a bigger board! MVP award this game goes to my Eversor Assassin: 12 individual kills and the closest we ever got to contesting an enemy objective.

See you across the table,



Thursday, 29 April 2021

2nd Edition Army Challenge: Dark Angels Predator Annihilator TO-DONE!!!


Hi folks,

April has been a particularly hectic month, in which I have been navigating a whole bunch of family and work commitments. Don't get me wrong, most of it has been great, but it has pinched most of my hobby time. I spent two weeks on holidays at the beach, a couple of days in the mountains running a school camp and a week with my wonderful sister just catching up. Somewhere, in the midst of all that, I managed to finish this Predator off for the challenge. 

This model was lying in way too many parts in my bitz box, after a moving house catastrophe about 10 years ago. To see it all (well... mostly) restored makes me very happy. It was originally a gift from my sister, back when I was 14 years old, and it was a regular feature in my armies for a long time. There are a few things I still need to touch up, but for the sake of meeting the deadline, I'm calling it done.

I have posted some photos of it in the 2nd Edition Facebook group, and people seem to really like the positioning of the hunter-killer missile. I remember when I went to do the conversion, my main motivation was to stop it from drawing too much attention! By mounting it on the hull it helps to preserve the classic silhouette of the Predator. The only thing it is missing is the classic stormbolter mount on the hatch. Amazingly, Jon from the 2nd Ed. Challenge has offered to send me one; I think we have set a record for the lightest trans-pacific bitz postage! Once I receive it I will be replacing the hatch, hopefully in time for the reveal at the end of the challenge.

Here are some final shots:

And here is a photo of the tank squadron I have built up so far. I would love to have an old Whirlwind one day, but that will have to wait for a special occasion. I am eBay cold turkey for the foreseeable future!

See you across the table,


Sunday, 18 April 2021

Hobby Diary Part 4: Armour in April and Holiday


Hi folks,

The past couple of weeks I have been on school holidays, staying at to different locations on the south coast of NSW. Lake Tabourie is a place my family has always gone to; the past 58 years anyway. It was also the place where I learned how to play 40K back in the 90's, using cardboard cutouts on a camping table! I didn't bring any hobby materials with me, apart from some Magic the Gathering cards to keep up my MtG Friday appointments with The Boi. Because of this, I have not had much to report in my hobby diary. Now that I am at home, I have been busy stripping, reassembling and painting my old school Predator Annihilator for Armour in April and the 2nd Edition Army Challenge. 

This model was a gift, of sorts, from my sister. When I started painting 40K figures she sent me some money for my Birthday one year. It was significantly more than I had ever had control over in my life! I had a lot of sensible things I could have spent it on, even from a list-building perspective, but ultimately decided to sink it into a Predator Annihilator. I never regretted the decision; this monster has been the end of several Eldar Avatars, Grav Tanks, Greater Daemons and Ork Warbosses in its time, including Ghazghkull Thraka TWICE. It broke really badly two moves ago, so it is well overdue for the love its gaming record deserves. Enough talk, here are some WIPs: 

See you across the table,


Sunday, 4 April 2021

Hobby Diary Part 3: Monster March TO-DONE!!!


Hi folks,

Monster March has come to an end I managed to get my Forest Dragon finished just in time. To achieve this I had to graft a more modern elf rider onto the old metal legs. I kept the classic Wood Elf shield with the S shaped glyph on it, but swapped the spear for a Sisters of the Thorn wand. I imagine that would be a more useful weapon to use from the back of a dragon. I used a bunch of bright colours on the rider that I wouldn't use, inspired by some artwork of the elf-like Sitha from Tad William's Memory Sorrow and Thorn trilogy, which I love. 

I painted the hair a very dark brown, which was a suggested by my daughter. Apart from that, I used a lot of metallics, but tried to match them with the colours of the dragon as much as possible. Overall, I am very happy with how the project has turned out. It has earned a prized position on my daughter's model shelf, with the rest of her Wood Elves.  Here are some final photos:

See you across the table,