Marvel Chroma Crisis – MCP Launch Event

Marvel Chroma Crisis – MCP Launch Event

Marvel Crisis Protocol, from Atomic Mass Games is releasing in a week, and Drawbridge Games in Pittsburgh, PA is hosting a Launch Event Demo for the system on Saturday, November 16th.

Story: M.O.D.O.K. and a collection of other villains have collaborated to create a device that filters the color spectrum out of light wave radiation. They’re using this “Color Canceller” to hold the governments of the world hostage, demanding relinquishing money to Swiss accounts and nuclear codes to known A.I.M. operatives. Unknown to them, the device isn’t just making things unpleasant in the world (disrupting everything from fashion to traffic lights)–but it’s subtly affecting the very radiation patterns of the sun. Left on too long, and the Sun will be irrevocably damaged: dooming the earth. 

Only by teaming up can the heroes of Earth stop this menace. Will you join the heroes and fight against it, or join with the short-sighted villains who imperil all terrestrial life itself?

Launch Event: Given that we’re all just going to be getting our sets on launch day together, we cannot expect anyone to have painted minis. Hence the “Color Canceller”! The idea is come out, pick up some models, assemble one and get it on the table right away that day to learn the rules. Note that the Rules for Marvel Crisis Protocol are available for free download already. Players will field one hero or villain of their choice, unpainted, and team up with their side to protect or to destroy the Color Canceller. Participants who purchased any Marvel Crisis Protocol product from Drawbridge games will get first option for selecting the character that they’ll play (benefits of buying in)–hero or villain. But there should be ample other heroes available so that anyone is welcome to get in a try of the game too.

Timings: Players are welcome to come by Drawbridge anytime on Saturday, November 16th. We’ll be there, getting our models assembled–to bring some clippers and glue and get a model assembled yourself. Otherwise players who are just trying the game are welcome to come by the store before 6:00pm–as the battle for the Color Canceller begins at 6:00pm.

Escape from Hulk 13 – Rules

Escape from Hulk 13 – Rules

This event is a Kill Team-based narrative event for 1-12 players, run exclusively for  Drawbridge Games’ “Extra Life” 24 hours of gaming marathon fundraiser. Players take the role of a single trooper, and fight their way through massed opposition to escape from a dangerous space hulk. Expected play time is 3 hours, and the event starts at 8:30am to kick off Extra Life!

Players can pick any of the characters off the following list. The requirement is that players bring one single painted Warhammer 40k miniature that correctly represents the model that they are fielding. Players will do equipping of the model during the game, so any wargear depicted on the model is fine for the event. Players should also bring dice of their own, any tokens, and a measuring tool for the game.

Space Marine Scout Sergeant
Space Marine Tactical Marine
Space Marine Reiver
Space Marine Intercessor
Astra Militarum Infantry Guardsman Sergeant
Astra Militarum Tempestus Scion
Ad Mech Skitarii Ranger Alpha
Ad Mech Skitarii Vanguard Alpha
Chaos Cultist Champion
Poxwalker
Tzaangor Twistbray
Asuryani Guardian Defender
Asuryani Storm Guardian
Asuryani Ranger
Asuryani Dire Avenger
Drukhari Kabalite Warrior Sybarite
Drukhari Wych Hekatrix
Necron Warrior
T’au Fire Warrior Shas’ui
T’au Fire Warrior Breacher Shas’ui
Termagant (tho I would not recommend that choice)
Genestealer Cult Acolyte Hybrid
Genestealer Cult Neophyte Hybrid

Nothing else is needed to prep for the event, other than having the rules handy for your model and reflecting on this opening to the event’s story:

The last thing you remember is the war against the Orks. They were retreating from your force, and then it happened. You rounded a corner, and saw a strange Ork in a mechanized metal frame. The Ork had a strange device hanging over its shoulder, and the final thing you saw was a strange blue light burst from the device and fill your entire field of vision. 

Lucky Git

Lucky Git

This is a 40k story battle report featuring my Bad Moons Ork army versus Andy’s Tzeentch Daemons force. We’re gearing up for a big event, and Andy’s been painting up a storm, so we wanted to get some models on the table for a scrum.

Skizzit had never been a lucky git. Skizzit worked hard on his Warboss’ trukk, mostly repairin’ the whatnots and makin’ sure that the yellow paint was fresh. Skizzit’s Warboss was a Bad Moon, and that meant an eye for style and sumthin’ he called “sofikstikation”–which Skizzit understood mostly as lots of fresh yellow paint.

Orks vs Tzeentch Daemons 1

The Orks in Skizzit’s warband had been muckin’ around some ancient ruins, lookin’ for good loot amid the vacated humie structures that had been built. All Skizzit knew was that the humies had been here, and built some stuff to explore the ruins, but the humes weren’t around when the Orks arrived. It wasn’t long until one of the more knowy mekboyz got to turnin’ on some of the equipment the humies left, and then the fightin’ began.

Orks vs Tzeentch Daemons 3

Skizzit didn’t understand the things that came pouring out of the central chamber of the ruin, up into the abandoned work zone. They were fleshy odd things, in pinks and blues, with all sorts of flames everywhere. The Orks dove into battle with the things, but the fires were hot and when the Orks krumped ’em, they just came back with more.

Orks vs Tzeentch Daemons 2

The biggest of the squishy things was more massive than a Warboss, and had big old wings that carried him from fight to fight. Da Warboss got both his Big Mek and his Weirdboy to lead the attack on the thing, tho it was hard for Skizzit to tell if the thing was damaged at all by their attacks–as he barely understood what the Mek and Weirdboy did themselves. He did know that as the big thing killed its way through all the Orks and his fellow grots, things were getting out of control. What’s worse, is that Skizzit fled to the top of a building, only to find the big winged thing landing up there with him. He was trapped between the unsettling Weirdboy (who he always tried to avoid) and the great winged thing itself! The creature roared a massive roar as it sought to get at the Weirdboy, whose own eyes were glowing green with power. Skizzit fumbled in his bag for the small slugga he had nicked, vainly hoping to protect himself. The great bluish creature rushed forward, reality itself warping where his clawed feet treaded.

Orks vs Tzeentch Daemons 4

Skizzit raised his slugga and fired vainly, hoping that the noise would at least cause the thing to slow down or move away or something. Somehow, some way, the round from his slugga managed to catch the creature in the thigh. A hole appeared there, blistering with fire, and as Skizzit stood watching the air around the creature burst with sparks. The flaming hole in the thing’s thigh expanded and expanded, and after but a moment it was consumed in strange energy and reduced to ashes.

That was when Skizzit was taken from the Warboss’ Trukk work crew, and became part of the Weirdboy’s personal detail. He had defended the strange Ork once, and the whole crew said he’d have to keep doing it again. He was the blue giant killer, after all.

That’s how Skizzit found himself huddled in the shadows of the Weirdboy’s hut, suffering strange dreams and the Weirdboy’s frightening ranting every day, reflecting on how he never had been a lucky git.

Fungal Infection

Fungal Infection

This is a 40k battle report featuring my Bad Moons Ork army versus Mike’s Adeptus Mechanicus force, and used an opportunity to start fiddling with an effects filter app. Enjoy! 

The last transmission from the staff of the inter-system missile silo on Eomycot Secundus had been in status “filed but awaiting review” for two years before the logician got to it. There was nothing special in the transmission itself: a list of maintenance duties being performed on the tiny planet’s sole missile defense base. It was routine stuff: repairs from dust storms, a particularly resilient fungus in the subterranean levels, and other housekeeping tasks. Yet the next update was almost a year overdue. The logician flagged a inquiry, and in-system transmissions began to attempt connection. When no response was received for 10 iterations, a dispatch inquiry was sent to the closest Tech Priest Dominus with a request to investigate.

After a month of space transit away from the main exploration fleet in a Falchion escort, the Dominus arrived at Eomycot Secundus. An initial dispatch of scans showed that the settlement that surrounded the missile silo on the small planet was in complete ruins, but the silo was intact (complete with missiles ready in tubes). A servitor-piloted lander released a host of inspection servo-skulls, and the picts relayed back showed a disturbing sight: Orks and Gretchin were moving about the planet. With the missile silo in Ork hands, no fleets were safe passing by–yet the missiles had not been launched at their Escort, so the Dominus had to take a gamble. He detailed a personal guard to help him capture the silo.

Orks vs Ad Mech 2

As the Mechanicus landers made their way to the surface and began unloading troops, the Orks began to rally together. Long range picts displayed the Orks emerging from the silo itself, using the old imperial defense network as their own bastion for defense. Meanwhile Trukks, bikes, and more screamed toward where the Dominus’ force was deploying. At the center of the silo, literally perched amid the missile warheads, was a strange Ork shaman. Green power flowed from two bones he clashed together, and that seemed to energize the Ork forces. The Dominus wondered if the superstitious Ork perhaps thought of the missiles as a kind of standing stones of sacred technological ground, the way that the beast moved to defend them.

Orks vs Ad Mech 1

The first wave of Orks rushed from their ramshackle Trukks and into the Mechanicus lines. The Skitarii Rangers opened fire, and while the Ork numbers were thinned, the Ork assault still hit the Mechanicus lines hard. Slowly the heavier elements of the force–two Dunecrawlers–blasted their way through the Ork lines, the Orks who had so easily cut the Skitarii down until only two remained withered under the stubber fire. A rampaging Warboss tried to engage after jumping out of a Trukk, but one of the Dunecrawlers’ Neutron Lasers managed to zero in on him as he charged, turning the Ork leader into a smoking crater.

Orks vs Ad Mech 3

The Dominius himself had to engage the bothersome Ork Trukks that were tying up his Dunecrawlers and stalling the advance on the silo. One with a massive wrecking ball was finally felled by supporting fire, while the Dominus engaged another in combat. Firing up the energy field of his massive Ominissian Axe, the broad swipes eventually managed to cleave the engine of the Trukk in twain as it raced around him. A massive squig in the vehicle managed to chew some of his wires and dendrites, but the self-repair process allowed him to triumph.

 

Orks vs Ad Mech 5

The Orks delayed the Mechanicum heavy forces, but not quite long enough. While only the Dominus, two Dunecrawlers (one reasonably damaged and one intact), and two somewhat shell-shocked Skitarii rangers survived, they managed to clear out the complex of the primary Ork defenders. Despite the Orks ravaging the buildings all around the facility, the missile silo site was oddly untouched and undamaged. The usual Ork looting of such a technological place wasn’t even evident. The Dominus reviewed the evidence from the silo’s last transmissions, and it seemed to be utter silence. Two years ago the staff had been going down into the depths of the silo to clear out a spread of mildew, and two years later a strange Ork shaman was protecting the place like some strange holy site, almost a perverse parody of praising Terra for being the origin of mankind.

The Dominus shrugged. Xenos oddities were not his foray, and the vile greenskins had been eradicated. He requisitioned a replacement staff, who would arrive in a year’s time to the remote planet. He thought for a moment, and tagged an additional item on their task list for when they arrived: tunnel mildew. It wouldn’t do for them to refrain from cleaning the Omnissiah’s carefully constructed facilities when they arrived.

 

Orktober 2019: Git Race!!!

Orktober 2019: Git Race!!!

The month of Orktober is fast approaching, and the crazy Big Meks down at Drawbridge Games have decided to invite all the gits across the galaxy to the Drawbridge Mektown to participate in a little racing event. Thursday October 24th, 40k players are invited to Drawbridge Games to set a vehicle down and see if they have what it takes to win the Git Race 2019!

Bad Moons Warboss

Oi! You gitz! Callin’ ever one across da galaxy ta come race yer buggies, skiffs, and speedaz fer glory and da Git Race trophy! Wese Orks is gonna hold off on krumpin’ long enuf ter watch da race, so come get yer ‘umie, pansy, tinboy, an fishead vehicles into da starting line alongside da proppa Ork wagons. 

Race: The race will be held on Thursday, October 24th from 7pm to 10pm. The basics will be that you’re racing your vehicle around an Ork-built track, blasting at each other with your weapons, stopping at the Mek Pit to repair, and just plain trying to win the race. See the expanded rules below.

Prizes, Entry Fee, and Registration: There will be a trophy for the first place finisher, and a Mek Workshop terrain kit as a prize as well. The entry fee will be minimal, and registration is easy: just let the staff at Drawbridge know that you plan on attending and they’ll record ya.

Allowed Vehicles: Each faction (except Tyranids, sorry chums) has vehicle or vehicles that are permitted in the race. They’re generally light vehicles and transports: no walkers, flyers, or heavy stuff permitted. If there’s something we missed that you wanted to field and think would be appropriate for the race, let us know and we can see about adding it to the list. The table below is arranged by faction:

Faction Available Racing Vehicles
Orks Trukk, Kustom Boosta-Blasta, Shokkjump Dragsta, Boomdakka Snazzwagon, Megatrakk Scrapjet, Rukkatrukk Squigbuggy, Deffkilla Wartrike
Space Marines (all chapters) Rhino, Razorback, Primaris Repulsor
Adeptus Mechanicus Skorpius Dunerider
Astra Militarum Taurox (all variants), Chimera, Hellhound
Sisters of Battle Rhino, Immolator
CSM, Thousand Sons, and Death Guard Rhino, Plagueburst Crawler, Blight Hauler, Blight Drone
Chaos Daemons Skullcannon, Burning Chariot of Tzeentch, Exalted Seeker Chariot or regular Seeker Chariot, Horticulous Slimux (I mean, if you really want to… but he’s really slow and cannot plant any trees)
Eldar (all sorts) Wave Serpent, Raider, Venom, Starweaver, Vyper
Genestealer Cult Goliath Truck, Achilles Ridgerunner
Necrons Ghost Ark
Tau Devilfish, Piranha (all variants)

Rules: There will be an extensive oval track that will be raced upon set up on Drawbridge’s main table–including Orkish onlookers and even a snack bar. There will be a starting line, as well as a Mek Pit on one side of the track. Racers must move their speed each round, and can choose to advance as normal (note that Shockjump Dragstas and other models that have peculiar advance rules have those disabled, and advance as normal). If there isn’t space for your model to move past other vehicles, then it must stay behind them and maneuver for an opening. All vehicles must remain on the track or in the Mek Pit. Move order will be determined by place in the race (first to last). After the movement phase, every vehicle will get to either shoot or conduct melee attacks. Shooting can target any model AHEAD or beside the racer in the race (no picking on people behind, everyone guns for the models in the lead), and the model fires its weapons as normal using current 8th edition profiles. The normal “within one inch” rule is ignored in all ways, and instead a model can choose to melee any model within 3″ instead of shooting on its turn (representing the two vehicles jockeying for position). Shooting (or melee-ing) will also be done by place, but working last to first in order.

When a model is reduced to half its wounds, it rolls on the damage effects table below. Note that this happens every time a model is reduced to that point, and the new roll replaces the prior roll.

Half Damage Effects Table – Result Effect
1- Fuel Ignition A minor explosion causes a more volatile mixture. Until the vehicle is repaired for any reason, it gains +2″ to its Movement characteristic.
2- Crew Spooked The crew compartment suffered much of the damage, making them nervous and prone to putting more effort into racing. Until the vehicle is repaired for any reason, it MUST advance and adds an additional d6″ to its advance distance each time, but it cannot shoot any weapons.
3- Superficial Damage The damage done is all to the vehicle’s superstructure, no effect on its rules. When repaired for any reason this result is removed.
4- Suspension Battered The shocks of the vehicle (or it’s stability control in a hover vehicle) are damaged, making minor collisions on the track more damaging. Until it is repaired for any reason, the vehicle doubles the number of wounds it takes from melee attacks.
5- Fire in Fire Control Damage to the vehicle affects the weapons systems. Until it is repaired for any reason, the vehicle suffers a -1 penalty to all shooting attacks.
6- Engine Holed A round must have caught the engine! Until the vehicle is repaired for any reason, the vehicle suffers a -1″ penalty to both its movement characteristic and to Advance rolls.

When a model is reduced to zero wounds, it can only move at 2/3 its speed (rounding up) each turn (no advancing) and cannot shoot or melee. It must stop at the Mek Pit at the first opportunity. Models in the Mek Pit regain 2d6 wounds per turn they spend there rather than on the track (cannot exceed their maximum)–and may not shoot or melee while in the Mek Pit. Regaining wounds in the Mek Pit count as being “repaired” for purposes of the table above.

Squigs: Because of rolls on the Cheers and Jeers tables, Squigs may appear on the track. After all vehicles have moved, all squigs left on the track move 1d6″ toward the nearest vehicle. A vehicle that contacts a squig for any reason is hit by an attack with the following profile: Str 6, AP -2, D d3. The squig is then removed from the track. If all available squig models are on the track, no new squigs are thrown (count as the “a lot of yelling” result on the tables).

Cheers and Jeers: While the event is open to everyone, being an Ork crowd has a bit of an effect for Ork racers (and other participants lucky enough to be mistaken as looted vehicles). At various times, Cheers and Jeers will be announced. Every player, in order of their position in the race, then will roll on the Cheers table (if an Ork vehicle) or the Jeers table (for all non-Orks). Note that certain vehicles are clearly not Orkish and not looted, and must add +1 or +2 to their rolls, as indicated in this list: +1 to roll vehicles are the Skorpius Dunerider, Plagueburst Crawler, Wave Serpent, Raider, Venom, Starweaver, Devilfish, and Piranha; +2 to roll vehicles are the Primaris Repulsor and all of the Daemon choices, Blight Hauler and Blight Drone.

First the Cheers:

Cheers Table – Result Effect
1-    Encouraging Stikkbomb! A stikkbomb of encouragement gets flung from the crowd. Vehicle is hit by a single Str 3, AP -, D 1 attack. The vehicle also gets a bonus +1” to its movement this round due to the encouragement
2-    A lot of yelling! No effect
3-    Steer for da crowd! The Orks love a bit of a show. You can steer off the track this turn, rather than remaining on the track. However, you MUST collide with at least one Ork or Gretchen onlooker (bonus for more) in that movement, and must be wholly back on the track by the end of the movement (plan the move before moving the model).
4-    Dakka applause The crowd picks this vehicle as a favorite, and takes pot-shots at the closest other vehicle behind it. That vehicle suffers d6 Str 4, AP -, D 1 hits.
5-    Throw a squig! The driver of the vehicle can either catch and eat it (regaining 1 lost wound, counting as a “repair”) or drop it behind him, placing the squig d6” directly behind the vehicle
6-    Thunderous applause! Due to the psychic energy of all the cheers for them, the vehicle gets +2 to movement this turn

Then the Jeers

Jeers Table – Result Effect
1-    Mistaken for an Ork! Immediately roll 1d3 on the Cheers table instead
2-    A lot of yelling! No effect
3-    More yelling! No effect, but louder
4-    Oi, get dat one! Pointed out by the crowd, all players that shoot at this vehicle get +1 to hit this vehicle in the next shooting phase
5-    Throw a squig! Place a squig model 2d6” directly in front of this vehicle’s location
6-    Shoot ‘em! Vehicle is hit by d6 Str 4, AP -, D 1 shots from the crowd’s random firing
7-    Hit ‘em wit da trash! Vehicle is pelted with trash (and a chorus of boos) that gets into the workings of the vehicle (mashed into treads, sucked into intakes, etc). Reduce Vehicle to half speed and half results on advance rolls the next time that it moves.
8-    Gargant Kommand? Kill dat Git! Vehicle is hit by a single Str 10, AP -4, D d6 shot from the Gargant

 

Chili Con-Quest-o

Chili Con-Quest-o

Another cycle in our campaign of the Warhammer 40k Urban Conquest game has been completed. My joint Nurgle force of Daemons and Gellerpox Infected again took the battlefield against the Imperium.

Nurgle Beasts of Nurgle Kromlech Alternative Sculpt

In preparation I painted up three new Beasts of Nurgle, using sculpts from Kromlech miniatures. The snail-shell aesthetic matches Hortiuculus Slimux, and they’re a good variant for the list. 

Nurgle Death Guard Sample Paint Scheme

I also finished up my first test Death Guard Plague Marine, as I’m going to be expanding from Daemons to that force as I go. Figured the test paint job was worth sharing as well. He’s not perfect, but I think I’ll get better with the techniques as I practice more of the armor. 

The game we set up was a mission from the Urban Conquest book, and my opponent was again Ryan’s Astra Militarum. His mission was to get to various buildings in my half of the board, and use a free strategem to detonate the building and destroy it. There was a bit of a hide and seek element to it, as one building was secretly denoted as my headquarters–and victory hinged on my protecting it.

Nurgle Beast of Nurgle Daemon versus Astra Militarum Punisher

A Beast of Nurgle reaches Ryan’s tank line. He chose to sit and fire, which increased his shot effectiveness but left him very little to seek out the objectives in buildings. Being able to deploy up to the midway point of the board, plus Slimux’s boost to let beasts re-roll their charge distance when they were close to him, let me flood his side of the board rather quickly and bog down his offensive. 

Nurgle Daemons and Gellerpox Grubs versus Leman Russ Tank

This tank was the one that made the most progress, getting close to one of my buildings (that line in the terrain is the center line, and the edge of the building is just visible in the lower right). It wasn’t my key command building, but it was progress. Ryan’s armored sentinel was the only thing that managed to detonate any buildings, but they were not the correct ones and I managed to carry the day with the aggressive daemon stall. A triumph for the pestilent one, though my beasts took a real beating–I lost four of the six–and almost my entire Gellerpox were wiped out besides their leader and a CP-summoned new unit of flies.

Urban Conquest Segment Two Points

After round two of the campaign, my points lead increased again (I’m the green skull). While I don’t get as many resource points as the other factions, investing in campaign-point sources from the start so far is paying off. I know that opponents can equalize quickly–so I’ve got to keep being successful. And lucky–Ryan took the resource item that gave him an immediate d6 campaign points, only to roll a 1. He could have closed the gap to only 3 points with a different roll!

I’m aiming to play against the Xenos side and attack some Eldar in the next round, but also want to get a game in against the Imperials again to try and capture one of their critical sectors of the campaign map–as I used my resources to buy the strongpoint assault benefit to let me try it.

Before next time, I hope to make considerably more progress on painting Nurgle Daemons–getting 20 Plaguebearers and a unit of Nurglings done to start to flesh out my forces with troops. I’m too elite-heavy right now and it shows. More fiddling with Death Guard models is likely to happen as well. And there are bigger projects on the horizon, that coincide with the Chaos Knights codex just being released. More disease to come!

Warhammer 40k Power Points Painted

Nurgle Daemons: 21

Death Guard: 9 (I decided that model is going to be a Death Guard daemon prince rather than Nurgle daemons daemon prince as the list grows–I’ll eventually do up a suitably daemonic Daemon Price as well)

Gellerpox Infected: 18

Chaos Titans and Knights: 0

Conquest Begins

Conquest Begins

So the few followers of this blog may have noted that my painting and playing of Warmachine and Hordes has slowed to a glacial pace. The good news is that a new set of painting, and now finally playing, endeavors have filled the void. I’ve been working very hard on a Nurgle combined force, spanning Daemons, Death Guard, and even Gellerpox Infected. I’m really enjoying moving back to modeling and painting Games Workshop miniatures–working with their plastic kits and the level of detail and nuance they provide for painting is just great.

I’m really pleased with how the big guys turned out, both Vulgrar Thrice-Cursed and the large mutants. These were a good start to my experimenting with Nurgle, as I’m wanting to use a limited color palate for the skin, tentacles, boils, and pustules, and a rotation of flesh tone, Nurgle flesh, and a pale lavender seem to be perfect.

The other half of the Gellerpox: all the bugs and bits. I’m liking the blue tone for scales and for wings, and think it gives some good balance to the models. Clearly I’m doing lava bases again, as I really like the effect and it ties together armies nicely. 

Horticulus Slimux, a cluster of Beasts of Nurgle, three Feculent Gnarlmaws, and a Daemon Prince (right now he’s running with the Daemons, but can be Death Guard as I grow my forces).

To get some games played, I’m joining a group of friends and participating in the Urban Conquest campaign rules. The groups are divided into Imperial, Chaos, and Xenos, with Imperial being the most diverse set of armies and players, me carrying the Chaos banner with our Slaanesh player, and the Xenos being a solitary Eldar player (well, Craftworlds/Aelderi these days).

Our first night of games saw my force, led by Vulgrar Thrice-Cursed, get trapped between an Astra Militarum (Imperial Guard) Cadian army. The mission required me to get a certain number of my units out of the ambush and off the far table edge. Nurgle may be slow, but my resilience and diversity of units really helped me get enough to safety. The only trace that Nurgle’s minions had been present were a few cultists’ singed robes, some dead flies and fleas, and a row of feculent gnarlmaws planted by the Grand Cultivator himself. A win for Nurgle’s forces!

Some shots from the game. A mutant stops for a snack. The Astra Militarum tanks fend off the tiny flying swarms. And Horticulus Slimux manages to shepherd off enough models to win the game. 

The urban conquest campaign rules are a pretty neat kit. Games Workshop continues to get more and more effective in their campaign structures. This one is great because it really focuses you in on the games–play them, and have fun, and get missions based upon your sort of grand intentions as a force each round (e.g. “we’re on the attack,” “we’re staying defensive,” “we’re scouting,” or “we’re reinforcing”). The sticker sets are more like window clings, so they let you reuse the cards perfectly. I ended up aiming at victory points over resources, which I’m regretting after the first round of the campaign phase. A bit more balance may have been more flexible. In any case, I’m looking forward to more games and more fun with these models and this story.

The other game of the evening saw the Astra Militarum going up against the Eldar. The Guard just narrowly edged them out for a win. The campaign system uses a set of cards to represent the city in which the conflict is happening–the skulls in the lower left indicate when they’re owned by a faction. Mine are hard to see–green for Nurgle!

Warhammer 40k Power Points Painted

Nurgle Daemons: 24

Death Guard: 0

Gellerpox Infected: 18

Winter Rampage / Sturm & Dracodile

Winter Rampage / Sturm & Dracodile

Some local gaming updates, my own list progression, some shots from games, and painting progress all to share in this post.

Recently our local store, Drawbridge Games, hosted a Winter Rampage event. We had two tables where two different team-ups happened, and it was a lot of fun to run the event and watch the carnage.

Top are shots from the big Khador versus Circle, two-vs-two game. The Winter Rampage scenario had defenders in the middle with attackers coming from all sides. Circle chose to stick to one side, so the Khador wedge formed in the middle. The lower shot is from Cygnar versus Skorne. Despite some big heavies coming in and destroying a lot of stuff, defenders win when model count drops too low on the attackers, and they managed to stave off Skorne and triumph. Was a very close thing!

As for my gaming, I’ve been reading through an extensive forum blog about Minions that Nicholas in the Minions facebook group put me on to: Azahul’s Experiments with Sturm & Drang and a Dracodile. I’ve been starting to paint up some Farrow to explore that side of the faction, and this was a perfect way to enter that side while still using some of the pieces I’ve already done. I really like the combo of Sturm & Drang with a Dracodile, all the more now that I’ve played it some. I got in three matches, and I think I’m going to keep experimenting with them going forward for a while.

(Clockwise from Left) First up, I had a good game against Ryan’s Cryx, and Gaspy2. Their access to ghostly was tough to manage, but the Farrow warbeasts did a great job cleaning up threats so that there wasn’t enough on the board to stop the Dracodile from getting to Gaspy. Ended with assassination and no points scored by either side. Second game was against Mike’s Cygnar and Siege1. I took a lot of losses in the game, but got to the point where Siege1 had committed his feat and resources to taking out all my stuff. Sturm & Drang had to get the job done themselves. So they switched to Drang mode, rumbled in, and smashed Siege1 pretty handily. I’m definitely liking the pocket potential for personal assassination. Having Puppet Master and Hunter’s Mark from solos can turn up Drang as well as any of the beasts in the list. Finally a match against Patrick’s Retribution and Kaelyssa list. With two standoff sorts of abilities on each side, this became a positioning game. The Dawnmower battle engine was one that I couldn’t effectively cope with, and it got to the point where I couldn’t stop it from getting to Mire. That effectively ended the game despite the Dracodile being able to guard much of the board well. My first loss with S&D. 

Minions Maelok vs Trollbloods Horgle2

I also got in one non-Sturm & Drang game. I tried out a Maelok list with a Sacral Vault, against Michael’s Trollbloods led by Horgle2. The Sacral Vault is just no good with Maelok, at least the Gatormen Posse version of his list. They get in each others’ way, and it doesn’t gain their souls as they die (because they’re undead). Just not enough clicking there. There were some abysmal dice on both sides, but I managed to get to a stronger spot thanks in part to Enliven letting me back away from Mulg, to heal and go back another round. Ultimately I won, but it was a slog–a fun slog!

Finally my painting progress. There’s a lot here, and while I have the last couple parts of Sturm & Drang’s battlegroup to tabletop quality, I still need to touch them up to complete them. Until then, here’s what I’ve got complete:

Minions Sturm and Drang

Sturm & Drang. Really like how the model turned out. I’m realizing that I just plain like painting red colors, and love the red armor portions. So far they’ve been fun to run too, so I’m really pleased I got them done and onto the table. 

Minions Battle Boar

The one part of Sturm & Drang’s battlegroup that I’ve completed: a Battle Boar. I use yellow as my “energy” color for this faction, so felt that it was a good choice for the Battle Boar’s “rage liquid” apparatus as well. Definitely pleased by the outcome. Makes the model part of my faction, but still draws the eye. 

Minions Underchief Mire

Can’t run Sturm & Drang with a Dracodile without Underchief Mire! Great model, and I definitely like the scheme I chose for my Croaks. Have I said enough how happy my painting of this faction is making me? Because they really are fun. And I’ve been able to play tabletop painted all year so far. 

Minions Dracodile

The Dracodile itself. This big beastie was fun to paint up, and I really like the way it looks on the table. Excited to find other spots for it. Definitely want to try it with some of the other Warlocks soon. 

Minions Orin Midwinter

Finally, Orin Midwinter. Had fun doing him, and I like his one “wild” left eye. He’s a pretty integral part of the Sturm & Drang list. If the Dracodile gets rebuffed in a way that keeps him from being effective, things can go pretty bad pretty fast. So Orin got painted up to help with that problem. 

All told a good couple of weeks of gaming and painting. More updates to come as I finish up some Farrow and get more reps with Sturm & Drang.

365 Points Challenge Progress (2019):

230/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2019: 21 (Win/Loss 15/6); 2018: 129 (Win/Loss 78/51); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

15 Wins (Nemo1 x2, Irusk2 x2, Helynna, Maddox, Thyron, Harbinger, Magnus2, Rahn, Madrak1, Gaspy3, Siege1, Gaspy2, Horgle2) / 6 Losses (Xerxis1, Goreshade4, Dreamer, Makeda3, Irusk2, Kaelyssa)

Minions 2×2

Minions 2×2

So I’ve been toying around with the idea of running Rask without all the Lesser Warlocks, but still pretty beast-heavy. I’m working on getting Underchief Mire painted up, as I think he may bring a lot to Rask’s flexibility. Till then, I’m running what I think of as a 2×2 idea: two Swamp Horrors leading the way, backed up by two Wrastlers.

So far it’s working okay, if a bit slow. Rask actually takes more time to run than I expected, as there’s a lot of positioning concern in the early turns–making certain that the Feat ranges are complete protection isn’t always as easy as it seems.

I’ve really liked the one-two punch of two Swamp Horrors with Enliven and Admonition going in first, with two lingering Wrastlers waiting behind. Dahlia & Skarath is the one lesser I’m running now, and they’re designed to help swing whatever side I put them on, clear out infantry threats with sprays, and be a late-game assassination piece. It’s not an ideal list, as there are some things it can really struggle into, but it’s a fun list to play–and as I get the speed down on it I think it can leverage clock decently, as there are lots of decisions opponents need to be careful about when facing it.

Five of the six games I played recently were with variations of this Rask 2×2 list. First three were from a local steamroller, and then some practice games with opponents.

(Clockwise from Left) First round I got matched into Justin’s Irusk2 36 Doom Reavers list. I didn’t like either Rask or Maelok into this one particularly well. I probably should have worked armor and spacing with Maelok, but I opted for Rask as part of what I’m looking for in that list is infantry clearing. He wasn’t particularly effective at that, and I got far too pressed by scenario and ultimately lost the game on control points. Round two I faced Bill’s Madrak1 in Band of Heroes. Again, took Rask to leverage threat range and keep me safe from charges a turn. It worked better here, and I was able to open a corridor to Madrak1 and assassinate him. I almost bungled it a couple of times, but managed to get the job done. Third round was against Charles’ Gaspy3 list with Satyxis. This time I took Maelok, and that was an effective choice–Gaspy3 might run the few jacks in that list pretty scary, but does little to support the infantry. And they needed support to get thru the herd of gatormen. He had to get extrememly aggressive with Gaspy3, so Maelok himself was able to finish him off (with a Wrastler waiting in the wings as well if he came up short). All-in-all a fun tournament but hardly my best performance. Definitely need to get more practice with spacing and timing Rask’s attack. 

(Clockwise from Left) As for my practice games, I started with Rask into Makeda3, played by Larry. I got really close to assassinating her, which was good learning in what is a workable assassination run and what isn’t. Getting space for multiple heavies to stand is key, as I came up short because I could only fit the Snake into her after the Swamp Horror’s drag. Next I faced Steve’s Rahn list. Was another grindy game, this time with heavies trading into each other. I managed to win on scenario thanks to early presence and the way that Rask’s feat slows opponents’ ability to get to the rear scoring zones without sacrificing models. Final game was against Andy’s Irsuk2 running Iron Fangs. Andy put Irusk2 pretty close, and we paused the game to work out an assassination run with proxy bases where a Swamp Horror supported by a Wrastler both got onto the warcaster. It was pretty likely, but we were interested in a more extended game so we played it out. I ended up winning on scenario, but to be fair Swamp Horrors match up super-well into Iron Fangs so it was a tough slog from list selection for him. I’m definitely looking forward to the rematch on this one someday. 

Finally, I got a ton of painting done. I decided to swap the order on my painting progress, as I’m endeavoring to write more thoughtful articles about the lists I’m running–and putting that first. But I don’t want to neglect the painting progress, so here we go.

Minions Rask Warlock

Rask turned out really nice, I think. I love painting reds (no surprise), and it was fun to do some of the various highlights on him I definitely think my look for the Bog Trogs is my favorite (above Gatormen and Croaks). 

Both Swamp Horrors to go in my 2×2 list idea. These were also fun to paint, and pretty easy overall. They used techniques from the Gatormen but also from the Bog Trogs, so were nicely a middle ground model in that sense. 

Minions Dahlia and Skarath

Dahlia and Skarath were more of  challenge, and the picture doesn’t quite do them justice here. I liked the yellow snake motif I’ve done on things like the Sacral Vault (and will be on Jaga-Jaga), so finding how to fit that onto Skarath was a challenge. I went for the flesh between the front and back armor plates, and think it worked out nicely. They fit the rest of the army but still definitely stand out. 

Lanyssa Ryssyl Nyss Sorceress Minions Solo

Lanyssa Ryssyl, Nyss Sorceress, is probably the model I’m most proud of in this set. I really like the look of how she turned out, and I’m happy with her face and some of the lines of her more than anything else. A lot of the things I struggle with are on this model, so I felt definite accomplishment in getting her not only done, but looking pretty good. 

Targ Farrow Solo

Finally good, old Targ. He took far longer than he would seem to, as he’s got patchwork skin all sewn together on his arms and also composing his apron. I’m pleased how he came out, and I really liked making his red armored accent his eyepatch (he also has little bracers on his hooves and a bar across his back that are red, that you cannot see in this image). He’s ready to help out with my next project list… that’s right, some Farrow are coming soon. 

365 Points Challenge Progress (2019):

168/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2019: 17 (Win/Loss 12/5); 2018: 129 (Win/Loss 78/51); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

12 Wins (Nemo1 x2, Irusk2 x2, Helynna, Maddox, Thyron, Harbinger, Magnus2, Rahn, Madrak1, Gaspy3) / 5 Losses (Xerxis1, Goreshade4, Dreamer, Makeda3, Irusk2)

ATC 2019

ATC 2019

This past weekend I traveled to Wisconsin for the America’s Team Championship for Warmachine and Hordes. My team, Iron City, is composed of players from here in the Pittsburgh meta, and I don’t think I’m speaking out of turn to say we all had a pretty great time–even with the -1 degree weather in lovely January Wisconsin.

iron city americas team championship warmachine hordes 2019

Team Iron City for 2019. And if you’re not from Pittsburgh, and don’t know what Iron City is or means, this video is a pretty good start. Our team captain, Rob McCarty loves his conversion of the Skarre3 boat to have the full ship so much he carried it everywhere… even our team photo. 

Our team focused on us bringing a combination of things we felt strong and comfortable with, as well as some anticipation of various lists. I have been playing Minions for the past few months, and have really felt that this is the faction for me for both fun and competitive play. Because I’m relatively recent to Minions, I don’t have a ton of practice under my belt–I got 42 games in with Minions in preparation for the event, though many of those were with Warlocks I didn’t end up taking as my final pairing. That definitely showed in my record and play, but it’s something I can work on.

I clearly wanted to bring a Maelok list, as I feel that’s one of the strongest in the faction right now (and one I enjoy playing). So the question was pairing. I finally settled on a Jaga-Jaga list to help me cover some specific match-ups that are bad for Maelok (tho I bungled one in my time at the ATC, see below). In particular, things that brought high defense infantry and massed weaponmaster infantry were a concern. Maelok’s gators have strong armor, but not that strong. I made my Maelok list around two Wrastlers to crack armor, so I didn’t have quite the problem with hitting power that some Maelok builds can have. All in all, I felt like it was a good pair for me at least, and it definitely improved my match-ups chart over the other Warlocks I had been considering.

atc 2019 final standings

The event ended up being a good one for the Iron City team, as we finished 4-1 for record and in 5th place overall as a team out of a field of 32. Not too shabby. My aim was to go 3-2 for the event, and I didn’t quite get there, ending 2-3. I’m probably the weakest player on the team in terms of experience and preparation (again, only started Minions recently), so that wasn’t entirely surprising for me. I did feel good about how I did overall, when considering the matchups and the games.

It was a great event, and huge thanks to Travis Marg and Nathan Hoffman for running a smooth and effective tournament. Was fun to see all the games, all the great armies, and to play some seriously great opponents.

Here’s a more detailed breakdown of my games in each round, for those interested in a bit of underwhelming battle reporting. I’ll discuss the pairing options, outcomes for our team, and how my game went with each.

atc 2019 round 1 minions jagajaga vs skorne xerxis1

First round my pairing sheet was kind of ugly, because I don’t have a ton of readiness for some of the Skorne drops and their team had double Skorne. Both Maelok and Jaga-Jaga are iffy at best into them, tho the fewer heavy hitters the more Maelok may shine. Unfortunately first round I got paired against a player running a Xerxis1 Immortals list with Tiberion and double Supreme Guardians Certainly qualify as too many heavy hitters. I took Jaga-Jaga and hoped it would be enough shooting. It wasn’t. The list projects Tiberion far faster than you ever expect, and having a better plan for it than I had is critical. The shield guard solo was a huge deal, making me have to oil twice against targets often. My opponent was Phil, from the Bottom of Three, Grab a Brewski team from California. He was a great opponent to play against, and we had a good discussion of just how effective Xerxis1 can be–kudos for him for a good list piloted well. Even though I lost, my team ended up winning the round 4-1.

atc 2019 round 2 minions maelok vs retribution goreshade4

Second round we faced Florida Meta, a great team, and my opponent was Rean and his Retribution (Goreshade4). I felt like my Jaga-Jaga list would just be diced by either of his Dawnmowers, so I went for Maelok even though I also didn’t care for him into this particular matchup. This was a tough match from the start for me, as the shooting of the Dawnmower was well applied, and I was just coming a bit short on some of my distances in both the relative threat range and the positioning I was using. There was a large woods and a building that made a narrow corridor, and while on my feat turn I could use it that gap turned out to be a bit of a pain for the rest of the game–I definitely played my starting positioning wrong on this scenario/matchup. With a scenario that was hard to score points on and a great player running a solid list, it ended pretty ugly for me. Still had a fun game, but starting 0-2 wasn’t the look I was hoping for. This time our team just narrowly was beaten. We won 2 of our games (Iona over Vlad2 and Goreshade4 over High Reclaimer), but our Gaspy3 player lost him to an assassination that was pretty streaky on dice. If one of Holt’s two damage rolls weren’t 10’s or better on two dice Gaspy3 would have survived. So a pretty close round.

atc 2019 round 3 minions maelok vs mercenaries magnus2

Third round we faced our first cold-weather team, The Trolls from Felix’s Basement from the Chicago area. I had some good match-ups and bad into this team, and got one I was at least confident into: Magnus2 (run by Ben). He could only catch 4 lead gators and the Totem Hunter with his feat, which meant the ones behind them on my feat turn could get into the action with ease, and it was a reasonably quick scenario for points to be scored. I wasn’t locked out of stopping his scoring, but he couldn’t stop mine as easily. That meant I got the gradual lead, and was able to just keep re-filling my units to grind his force down. It was a scenario victory for me, and what I needed that weekend–that first win makes everything feel a lot better when playing on a team event. Our team also won this round 4-1, so we kept the pace on the positive side of things.

atc 2019 round 4 minions maelok vs protectorate of menoth harbinger

Fourth round I was starting to drag just a bit as it was a long day, so of course it proved to be my most grind-y matchup. We were paired against the other Florida team: Snooty’s Chosen. Again, there were a couple of lists in this that I was comfortable at least playing, and a few I was less interested in facing, but I got set out early to help other match ups. I got paired against Jeff and his Protectorate of Menoth. He went for Harbinger, and I took Maelok. And it was exactly the slug-fest you expect it was. It came down to clock, during turn six of the game. I was up on scenario 3-0 thanks to protecting my flag and clearing the left zone once, but things were getting ugly. The faithful were definitely wearing through my force, and I was increasingly having to summon 1 heath gators with Revive back to block lanes of advance. The real advantage in this game was that Soul Harvester paid off in a big way. I was able to collect a lot of solos and infantry on my left flank thanks to it, after they eventually died. Harbinger used Martyrdom a lot–to the point where one turn she had only 3 health left (and the objective and the hierophant were healing her up). It was a fun game, and the only downside was that I bungled the clock once (passed to him for what I thought was him taking time to decide on a Martyrdom). We noted it about 2 minutes later, called a judge, and they luckily got it reset–bleeding an extra 2 minutes off my clock and adding 2 minutes back on his. Overall a great game, and my opponent played it really well. It was extra great as a game, because our team won that round 3-2. It’s a weird feeling being the final game to finish when the teams are 2-2, but good if you win.

atc 2019 round 5 minions maelok vs grymkin dreamer

Fifth round pairings were announced late that night, so we could discuss them the next morning over breakfast. In talking through my matchups, my teammates were insistent that I was wrong to think Jaga-Jaga was my choice into Grymkin, and that I use Maelok to grind for scenario (on a reasonably fast scenario). I have experience into Grymkin with other factions, and I was reasonably confident into the match regardless. My only problem was that I’ve never played against Grymkin with a Warlock so reliant upon specific rules Incorporeal, Undead, and Tough. Yeah. Totally spaced that there was an arcana that simply strips Maelok of everything that his force needs. Add that to the RFP effect on the heavies, and that will tell you what you need to know. I did get a scenario lead at the start, but soon it equalized and it ended with a scenario win for him and all but my Warlock and one unit of Gators dead. I chalk this one up to my inexperience with the faction more than anything else. Jaga-Jaga still may well have lost, as my opponent (Dan from Team: Faction Hoppers Inc. And Steve) was a very good player, far more experienced than me. So it was a major learning flub for me, and the worst possible time for such a flub (final round of a big event). Thankfully my teammates were effective, and we ended up winning the match 3-2.

Overall a good event, with more than few take-aways for me as a relatively novice Minions player. I think the critical things I learned were:

  1. Have a better answer to shooting and infantry than Maelok.
  2. Figure out what opponents’ abilities are simply back-breaking for your lists and your faction–don’t count on prior faction knowledge to give you a sense about what you’re currently playing. I even reviewed major arcana when doing my pairings sheet two weeks before, but totally spaced that the minor arcana held something that was a silver bullet against one of my lists–because it never came up with my Legion or Convergence in all the times they’ve faced Grymkin.
  3. I still need to work on my spacing. I’m getting much better, but there were moments where I’ve lost 3 rather than 2 gators, or 2 rather than 1, that could have been avoided if I conceptualize the battlefield a bit better.
  4. I definitely enjoy playing Minions as a faction more than any other I’ve tried in quite some time. I played 65 games with Legion last year, but it never clicked like this faction did almost immediately. I’m very excited to get better as a player with them.

I also managed to paint a bit more of my force when I got to the hotel on Friday night. Jaga-Jaga wasn’t finished but had enough colors to be fine, and I borrowed the two units of Croak Raiders and a min unit of Bog Trog ambushers from my teammate Justin. But I did finish some other stuff.

1 gobber tinker minions

A Gobber Tinker, who is carrying the repair parts that would be appropriate for repairing the Sacral Vault (skulls and candles).

1 void leech minions

A Void Leech for my one unit of Croaks. Glad to have him done, as it means that I can swap in this one-point item in Blindwater lists as needed to make points work. 

1 boil master and spirit cauldron minions

And finally, a Boil Master and Spirit Cauldron. I absolutely love that the crocodile has a little salt and pepper shakers set on his belt. Given that I wanted to keep the flame motif of the force, I didn’t want to do any magical bubbling liquid or anything, so I made the runny stuff coming out of the pot just skin tone–like boiling flesh. 

365 Points Challenge Progress (2019):

107/365

Battles (Privateer Press):

Overall Totals 2019: 11 (Win/Loss 8/3); 2018: 129 (Win/Loss 78/51); 2017: 120 (Win/Loss 86/34): 2016: 123 (Win/Loss: 74/49); 2015: 43 (Win/Loss: 29/14)

Minions: 

8 Wins (Nemo1 x2, Irusk2, Helynna, Maddox, Thyron, Harbinger, Magnus2) / 3 Losses (Xerxis1, Goreshade4, Dreamer)